Friday, December 15, 2017

The Trumpies Just Don't Get It

As many of you know, I am a globalist, FRINO (former Republican in name only), cuck who adhere's to the dying ideology of Kirk and Burke. Jonah Goldberg is also part of my tribe, although he is far more famous and well-read than I am. I've taken a few Tweet exchanges that he had this morning as a means to illustrate conversations that I find myself in more frequently these days, with my few remaining Trumpy correspondents.


By way of nuancing "Jason Colonge" a bit, I do believe Trump is doing a good job on ISIS (but his approach is not terribly different in form from what Obama was doing, nor is it much different than what we could have expected from any of the other major Republicans running in 2016). I do believe he has appointed some excellent judges -- but again -- his judicial picks are--get ready for it--establishment Republican favorites with the exception of some of the lesser lights he has nominated. For an example, feast your eyes on this video. Yes, it is tweeted by a liberal, Democratic Senator--but the QUESTIONS are posed by a conservative, Republican Senator:

And yes, I believe the economy is doing great--in no small part because Wall Street has priced in an (wait--here it comes again) establishment GOP tax cut, and also because Wall Street has priced in the sense that really very little damaging is going to occur from the gridlock we now see (if nothing happens, nothing bad happens). Had Jeb, Ted, Marco, or Ben won the nomination and the election, the economy would be---here it comes--right where it is today.

At the heart of Mr. Colange's (and my other correspondents') arguments is the classic "the ends justify the means". Or, what is actually happening in this Presidency is aligned with your political preferences, so why are you so dead-set against it?  The answer is of course, the ends do not justify the means. Because I like an active deregulation approach does not mean I approve of the constant stream of untruths spewing from the President and his toadies. Because I like some judicial (and other) appointments does not mean I approve of the reckless manner in which the President offends our friends and allies in the world. Because I am fattened by a growing economy does not mean I all of a sudden elevate the conduct of a schoolyard bully to that of a wise statesman. 

In other words--policy and politics are NOT ALL THERE IS. There are also norms of behavior and civil conduct that guide the way we interact with other human beings. These are being daily whittled away. And just because Trump is carrying out policies I generally like does not mean I should just ignore the other important parts of what make up a civil society.


Robert said...

I hear you, and I am weary of our lower public standards. But President Trump is more the end result of continued incivility than anything truly new in our public realm.

I was a neverTrumper until election day, and reluctantly voted for the party because of living in a key swing state. As time goes on, my perspective has shifted a bit.

There is a freak show Trump, and a cagey politician Trump, both stepping on each others' performances. Filter out the noise, and there are a lot of serious changes happening, some of which were given lip service by the Republican establishment. In the real world, they rarely could deliver.

Mr Trump has scrambled the playing board, which his core supporters were hoping and expecting. While his opponents go full hysterical, I see him taking bold actions that I can't see any of the others in the 2016 field actually following through. They would all, maybe even Cruz, have withered under the incoming, and turned from the battle.

I think the rest of the world is less offended than the WaPo and NYT crowds, and more likely to regard USA as a determined and confident great power unafraid to assert its cold, realist interests. We lost that sense abroad the last dozen years or so.

History takes a while to catch up with the delusions of the prior administration, and the fawning coverage that insisted there was no corruption in the Obama team. We are still early in reassessing and realizing the deep corruption and Chicago machine incivility that a partisan press refused to recognize.

So I am in wait and see mode with the Trump Administration, willing to overlook the cringe-producing processes if the outcomes seem to be coming together. The changes in the world are happening fast, and Trump is only one symptom, in only one country, we will see much else happening around the world. Trump may be better positioned to ride this tiger, compared to any of the other sixteen from 2016.

The Conservative Wahoo said...

I simply could not disagree more.

The Conservative Wahoo said...

I read through Robert's column a second time, and except for the more tempered language, it is the same argument one gets from all Trump fans. I like what he is doing, so I'll ignore the stuff I don't like. Oh, and also, I hate the people he pisses off, so I don't mind that stuff. As for the "bold actions"--this is rubbish. The only bold POSITIVE bold action Trump has taken that I'm not sure his 2016 foes would have--is the big splashy statement about Jerusalem. Now--if it is followed through, if the embassy actually moves, this will have been bold. For now, it was a bold statement with real meaning. But NOTHING else Trump has done that is worth a damn would not also have been done by his 2016 opponents.

Newer Post Older Post Home