Thursday, May 18, 2017

In the ongoing flurry of arcane details about a number of DJT-related crises, his character must remain the focus

Yes, the "mainstream" media are gunning for him. Yes, there's lots of over-the-top talk from Hill Dems. Yes, there seem to be moles in the administration. Yes, probing for US weakness is a core tenet of Russian foreign policy.

Still, Donald Trump's biggest problem is himself.

I don't presently care to weigh in on whether the appointment of Mueller as special counsel is a good or bad move. Nor is whether Congress ought to subpoena any or perhaps all of Comey's after-the-fact memos to himself about meetings with the president the main point for me.

It remains DJT's deep and egregious flaws.

Scott Johnson at Power Line says it well:

President Trump’s death struggle with his invisible opponents, however, has arrived early in his first term in office. In this death struggle, moreover, President Trump is mismatched. His flaws of temperament and character have aggravated the situation roughly since day one. He has burned through the credibility of his White House staff, and he thinks it’s their fault. Republicans on Capitol Hill have mostly gone to ground, and not just John McCain.
In an otherwise admirable commencement speech at the Coast Guard Academy yesterday (transcript here), President Trump complained about his treatment by the media: “[N]o politician in history, and I say this with great surety, has been treated worse or more unfairly.” I doubt the essential accuracy of this statement — I don’t think it’s even close — but it would be difficult to verify and is in any event undignified coming from an incumbent president.
Trump doubled down on the whininess today, with a tweet about a "witch hunt."

I caught a few minutes of Laura Ingraham's show this morning, and her line was one I've heard her feel compelled to trot out myriad times since the summer of 2015: Trump needs to stop getting mired in distractions and stay on message regarding the big policy orientations that enthuse his base.

She's not stupid, so what is it?  Even if she thinks her show content gets back to the inner circle at the White House, can she not see that these exhortations aren't being heeded?

No small part of listening to her is the implicit assumption that, except for his penchant for taking the bait, everything is fine. It's not. Stories about his staff being on knife-edge waiting to see what they'll have to clean up next abound.

I can be fairly dismissive of her increasingly awkward position, though, because she was one of the original Kool-Aid swallowers, along with Hannity, Conrtad Black, Wayne Allen Root, Ann Coulter and Jim Hoft.

What saddens me is the spectacle of those who didn't imbibe the Kool-Aid until after they'd been on record fully acknowledging DJT's vulgarity and narcissism.

Bookworm comes to mind. Her latest post focuses on the slings and arrows arrayed against Trump. In
fact, it's titled, "The Slow Motion Assassination of Donald Trump." In the course of it, she recommends a piece she recently ran across that she deems the last word in Trump-defense:

A full-throated intellectual defense of Donald Trump. This articlecame out in January and I’m just shocked that I missed it. Daniel Bonevac, an academic (yes! an academic) from the Univesrity of Texas in Austin (where he’s the only conservative in his department), explains precisely why he voted for Donald Trump. And he gets it. He totally gets it.
The article is long and I can’t find a specific quotable quote because it’s so dense with ideas (although never stuffy, confusing, pompous, or boring). I can assure you that you’ll feel smart, happy, patriotic, and reasonable once you read it. Then you should share it with your fellow Trump supporters because, in the face of months of sustained attack, it’s a real morale booster. I’m not exaggerating. Bonevac’s post one of the best things I’ve read in I don’t know how long and every non-Leftist, whether a Trump supporter or not, should read it.
Well, I read it, and found it glaringly lacking. You see, for all its emphasis on the he's-not-Hillary angle, the people-in-flyover-country-who-work-with-their-hands-are-tired-of-the-elites-looking-down-their-noses-at-them angle, and the precarious-state-of-the-world angle, there is not one word about what I would consider the front-and-center aspect of the current juncture: Trump's own personality and character flaws.

As Bookworm says, the essay came out in January, and one line of Bonevac's defense looks a little dated now: the idea that Trump was going to be some kind of marked departure from the Most Equal Comrade's phone-and-a-pen style of presiding.

No, more than ever, the idea that to speak clearly and loudly about how doubtful it is that Trump is really fit for this job makes one a villain barely distinguishable from some shrill leftist rings very hollow.

With each new unfolding in the array of dramas, it becomes more clear that his troubles are largely of his own making.

1 comment:

  1. Maybe if we offer him a big check he will go away.