The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Year One—Suck It Up

It is somewhat ironic that one of the best dissections of Trump Derangement Syndrome (TDS) and the people who suffer from it has been written in The Australian:
To be sure, [Trump] is easy to dislike. Brash, egocentric, abusive and petty, he is a personality type we all recognise but have seldom, if ever, seen rise to such heights.

We have heard private conversations and other accounts of him speaking cruelly and offensively about women, immigrants and foreigners. His political rhetoric has been crass and divisive. While an effective communicator, his lexicon is almost monosyllabic, and his style of diplomacy is, well, undiplomatic. Yet if we are to judge him solely on matters of personality and style we would be practising exactly the sort of superficiality his critics assign to him.

It is a mistake to think his supporters necessarily are fond of his personality or style. They love Trump for the pain he causes virtue-signalling liberals whose post-material concerns are a world away from their daily objective of making life better for their families. We have to judge Trump by his performance. His temporary immigration bans aimed at “extreme vetting” for immigrants from troubled Muslim countries have been stalled by state courts but are likely to be enforced after Supreme Court consideration. His tax reform package is monumental — it will be the basis of his success if it supercharges the US economy. Trump withdrew the US from the folly of the Paris climate agreement.

On foreign policy he has imposed decisive action against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq. He has forced NATO to focus on burden sharing, placed Iran under increased pressure as its citizens begin to defy the theocracy and, crucially, forced stronger action by the UN and China against North Korea, triggering tentative but positive signs in this long-running and fraught power play.

The mainstream media has given him virtually zero credit for any of this. Transparently, the political/media class accused Trump of taking the world to the brink of nuclear war by standing up to Kim, then wrote him out of the script when North Korea turned up for its first talks with South Korea in more than two years. They have ignored the defeat of Islamic State in Iraq as diligently as they averted their eyes from Obama’s red lines in Syria. Trump’s critics fall for his rhetorical tricks, delivering his messages for him. His Mexican wall is more a difference of building materials and language than of border security policy. Yet the exaggerated opposition gives him clear differentiation on a strong issue. Likewise, knee-jerk media defensiveness confirms his claim of partisanship. When serious journalists say Trump threatens freedom of the press because he accuses media of “fake news” and bias, they simply demonstrate their antipathy. Suck it up.
Democrats and progressives lost a presidential election they thought they would win easily. And their subsequent behavior over the past year has been unhinged—so unhinged, in fact, that it's noticeable 9,300 miles away in Australia. Progressives and Democrats seem incapable of recognizing that their petulant and infantile behavior is at least as embarrassing to them as Trump's petulant and infantile behavior is sometimes embarrassing to the presidency. The difference is that Donald Trump, despite his behavior, is actually accomplishing things that matter in this country and around the world.

With their marches and protests, Facebook rants and overwrought op-ed pieces, progressives and most Dems have succeeded mightily at moral preening, but have accomplished nothing else. To use The Australian's terminology—it's now been a year, "suck it up."