Wednesday, September 05, 2018


I am a stone skeptic when it comes to conservatives who claim to be anti-Trump. I mean, it's taken me more than a year to acknowledge that Max Boot, for example, is sincere about opposing the guy. Boot remains a war-mongering monster, of course, but he's not pretending to be anything else -- he even admits that he can't approve of Trump's saber-rattling, not because Boot has turned pacifist, but because he thinks Trump lacks the belly (figuratively speaking) to follow through with the civilizational slaughter Boot's approval would require.

So when Boot says he's hoping the Democrats take over to teach Republicans a lesson, I believe he means it, because he's not trying to snow me about why he wants it. Thus, if he and his comrades of convenience get rid of Trump and eventually install President Mattis, I won't be stuck with my thumb up my ass blubbering "B-b-b-but I thought we was pals" as America blows up half the Middle East and Boot orgasms voluptuously.

But this anonymous New York Times op-ed author is full of shit:
I Am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration
I work for the president but like-minded colleagues and I have vowed to thwart parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations.
When I saw that I thought, okay, I just got back from lunch, maybe this is bigger than I thought -- maybe this person just blew up a Trump cabinet meeting, a la Operation Valkyrie. Alas, it was just this:
To be clear, ours is not the popular “resistance” of the left. We want the administration to succeed and think that many of its policies have already made America safer and more prosperous. 
But we believe our first duty is to this country, and the president continues to act in a manner that is detrimental to the health of our republic.
What does this resistance fighter think are Trump's -- excuse me, the Resistance's -- good policies? "Effective deregulation, historic tax reform, a more robust military and more." So: the destruction of the EPA, HUD, et alia; massive tax breaks for the rich; and a wasteful and dangerous increase in military spending. The resistance fighter doesn't say anything one way or the other about the administration's other controversial policies, such as the Muslim ban, the ongoing attempt to stack SCOTUS to kill Roe, or the ICE child-stealing atrocities. You think that's because this person doesn't have an opinion about them -- or because this person doesn't want you to know what it is?

As for what Trump's doing wrong, the resistance fighter does mention his "enemy of the people" attacks on the press -- which is smart if you're trying to get the New York Times to run a rare anonymous op-ed! And the resistance fighter notes Trump was "reluctant to expel so many of Mr. Putin’s spies" over the Skripal case as real conservatives wanted -- but wait, didn't he expel them anyway? Ah, the resistance fighter tells us, that wasn't Trump -- "his national security team knew better — such actions had to be taken, to hold Moscow accountable." And so they drugged Trump, and used a professional forger the resistance fighter knew in his or her previous life as a Navy SEAL to sign the order. Presumably. (Really, this thing is so bogus it's got me questioning even the entertaining Woodward book excerpts about Trump's staff hiding papers from him to prevent him from doing what he wants. Say, I wonder who the source was on that?)

And there's not much more of an anti-Trump brief than that, policy-wise; the resistance fighter says "President Trump’s impulses are generally anti-trade and anti-democratic," but doesn't say how he or she feels about his policies, as opposed to his "impulses." In fact nearly all of the criticism of Trump is temperamental -- his "leadership style" is "impetuous, adversarial, petty and ineffective... his impulsiveness results in half-baked, ill-informed and occasionally reckless decisions," which decisions are left unnamed. That is, they're the same sort of complaints you get from weaselly former NeverTrump doofuses like Jonah Goldberg -- though Trump is giving them nearly everything they want, he's, like, really gross and embarrassing.

This leaves the question of why this resistance fighter is telling us all this. Won't it tip off Trump, and make manipulation of him more difficult in the future? Perhaps the resistance fighter feels his or her fellow countrymen are frustrated and badly need a signal that all's well in the Resistance White House so they can have the courage to hold on. Or maybe it's a false flag -- the author is Stephen Miller, and he's trying to rouse the base by giving them more treachery to be mad at.

Or maybe it's as simple as this: When the Trump shitshow blows over, someone at the White House is gonna want a job on the outside. Maybe a lot of someones do. True, our "liberal media" being what it is, the more high-profile Trumpkins will, if they escape jail, haunt the Sunday morning talk shows and executive boards, but some of them may not be so well-connected. If one were in such a predicament, why not plant this op-ed and, when Americans are hunting Republicans down with dogs, reveal oneself to be the author -- or co-author -- of this self-exonerating document? And if Trump doesn't go down, they can always just keep their mouths shut.

I favor this theory because this person's prose positively screams snow job. Rather than tell us, as Max Boot did, what their competing conservative vision is, the resistance fighter tells us he or she and the others are "choosing to put country first... rising above politics, reaching across the aisle and resolving to shed the labels in favor of a single one: Americans." Did your hand instinctually check to see if your wallet was still on your person? Mine too. Don't piss on my leg and tell me it's resistance.

UPDATE. I have further thoughts of this at my newsletter. Did I tell you good people I have a newsletter? It just started and it is a paid newsletter, as you will find when you try to log in. But well worth it! Fresh content every day Mon-Fri! And maybe even some bonus content as soon as I work out the kinks.

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