Response to “Why Trump is Weakening”
Ross Douthat in today’s New York Times makes the following case:
“In Donald Trump’s quest to sustain his dominance over the Republican Party, his claim to have been robbed of victory in 2020 has been a crucial talisman, lending him powers denied to previous defeated presidential candidates. By insisting that he was cheated out of victory, Trump fashioned himself into a king-in-exile rather than a loser — an Arthur betrayed by the Mordreds of his own party, waiting in the Avalon of Mar-a-Lago to make his prophesied return.”
A ‘talisman’ is it, Ross? Well, only if you and your pompous "All the News That's Fit to Print" newspaper says so, I guess it must be true. And, of course, the NYT never fails to carry anything Trump. Like Ivory Soap, it not only sells well, it floats. Just exactly what powers did he get that were denied to previous defeated presidential candidates? And why would you presume or even think that a sitting president denying an obviously lost election is anything other than an act of anarchy, if not sedition?
So, I’m making the counter-case that Trump could never have fashioned himself as anything other than the liar and crook he is—and has always been— without criminally cringe-worthy media attention
This racist ex-president, who found it politically convenient to turn Americans against one another, told over 35,000 documented lies in a brief four-year term and convinced a large part of the voting public that he was screwed out of winning a second term, should be a legitimate target of every honest newspaper. That’s not an accusation I make lightly.
I apologize. I’m pretty angry about the continuing media coverage of my nominee for the worst president in American history and I try not to show my anger on paper.
Trump was intellectually raised in his crooked business life by Roy Cohn, a snake of a lawyer who worked for Trump’s father and stayed on when the old man retired and the Donald took over. Earlier, Cohn was also the general counsel for the McCarthy Hearings, one of America’s most heated and destructive Senate investigations—serial lynchings would be a more accurate description. Cohn worked for the Donald until he was disbarred in 1986. Cohn was variously described by people who knew him as a snake, a scoundrel and a new strain of son of a bitch. He was famous among lawyers for winning cases by delays, evasions, and lies.
If you really want to understand the effect Cohn had on Trump, take a moment (after you’ve finished this) to check out The Final Lesson Donald Trump Never Learned From Roy Cohn.
President Richard Nixon lied about a break-in of the Democratic Headquarters and was driven from office
That was a lie on Dicky’s part. One lie. A serious lie and he was made to pay for it.
Donald Trump lied about (aside from 34,999 other matters) losing a national election. He then improperly tried to induce various states to ‘find’ enough votes to keep him in office. No dice there, but he got 79 Republicans in the House and Senate to support that lie.
On January 6th, he very nearly followed up Hitler’s burning down of the Reichstad (home of the German Parliament) in 1933 by encouraging the sacking of the U.S. Congress and a threat to overturn the United States government by force. He publicly stated that hanging Vice-president Mike Pence wasn’t all that bad an idea.
Consider, just for a moment, if Nixon had encouraged an armed insurrection to remain in power
Consider further if Tricky Dick had convinced Republicans in the House and Senate to agree that the Democratic Headquarters was planning to take over the country by force and only he could stop them.
Then consider, if you’re not too worn out from considering, that national media had wondered publicly if Tricky Dick might have been right
Why is the national media still paying attention to this man?
Why does the NYT give Ross Douthat space to speculate on Why Trump Is Weakening? Weakening? Are we really supposed to care? Is this a soap opera, contrived to sell shampoo?
Donald Trump is a demagogue, a thief, a crook and a fraud, whose business plan was to promise anything and settle for 20%. He ruined many a contractor, fleeced many a bank and bankrupted many a project—but always shielded himself personally by intimidation and a blizzard of lawsuits.
He’s a master of Joseph Goebbels (Hitler’s Minister of Propaganda) Big Lie. According to Goebbels, “It’s the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it’s always a simple matter to drag the people along whether it’s a democracy, a fascist dictatorship, a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked.”
Well, Donald certainly told us that often enough.
The formula of mass propaganda to dominate a people is simple, elegant and very dangerous
It has five key steps:
1. Conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the people;
2. Endless telling of the “Big Lies”;
3. Relentless fear mongering and denunciation of the “Enemies of the People” who are harming the “good” people;
4. Exhaust our capacity to think critically and to annihilate the truth; and
5. Do it quickly, always attack and never back down.
Well, it’s impossible to exhaust our capacity to think critically, unless the media stops thinking critically and serves up a daily ration of Trump on toast
FOX News changed the whole ballgame by outrageous right-wing coverage that brought them the single largest audience in media. I have absolutely no problem with that, it’s a business that maximizes profit. Why not? Hearst Newspapers did pretty much the same thing back in the thirties and now we have the conservative Sinclair syndicate buying up local papers across America.
My problem is that MSNBC, CNN, the NYTimes and other more liberal outlets, including international newspapers, absolutely shit their pants and threw their credibility overboard for fear of losing income. Where would you go to find an Edward R. Murrow, David Brinkley or Walter Cronkite today?
Is endlessly picking at the scab that is Donald Trump an example of ‘all the news that’s fit to print?’ More to the point, does it serve the American public, or only the bottom line. I don’t remember you media moguls giving Tricky Dick Nixon any space at all after his resignation. But Hearst wasn’t running you guys out of business like FOX News and “what’s a guy to do when honest reportage no longer pays the bills?”
Ross, you’re no doubt a nice guy and pleasingly literate, but you are guilty of serving up another helping of the Big Lie and, by association, having your readers actually consider another term by the most dishonest president this nation has ever suffered. A proven liar and fraud as a candidate? Again? I thought we’d seen that movie once and decided once was more than enough and twice simply a bridge too far.
In an attempt to sell-out again for money, the media is actually considering mega-racist Tucker Carlson as Trump’s philosophical standard-bearer.
It seems the new standard for standard-bearers is to have no standards
Jim Freeman Wake-up Call is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support my work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.