A view from the outside in doesn’t look pretty. The anonymous sources for the New York Times and the Washington Post tell us that the Priebus’s are at war with the Bannon’s, and the Bannon’s are at war with the Kushner’s. Everyone is trying to amass their power.
Of course, you look at the sources for the New York Times, and they disagree with the sources for the Washington Post. Different factions leak different things for different results, after all.
In the world around us, liberals attack conservatives and conservatives attack liberals. (Liberals are also attacking neo-Nazis, but shed few tears). #TheResistance is simultaneously growing in strength and dropping in numbers.
Once respected, authoritative voices in the conservative movement get reduced to the very type of water carrying they once shredded liberal commentators for being. Liberal commentators get reduced to being the very type of conspiracy theorists they once shredded conservative commentators for being.
The nation, just like the White House, is in a state of absolute chaos. Morals get abandoned for just a little bit more power, more clicks, more ratings, and more support. Ironically, in an era where very few people will claim that Donald Trump represents them, it is evident now that he is perhaps the perfect representation of the country.
What happened to conservatism that its most vocal leaders, its most influential voices, its authorities are all now supportive of the type of chaos that Donald Trump represents? Why is it that a movement that was once a movement of ideas is now content to water-carry for a near lunatic of a President? The instability and the inconsistency that makes Donald Trump what he is is now reflected in the movement that, for reasons that still mostly escape me, supports him.
The last two weeks are the perfect encapsulation of the type of insane bipolarism in this administration. Two weeks ago, the most chaotic series of news cycles that all stemmed from one meeting with Russian diplomats. Last week, a terror attack and a foreign tour that, while not gaffe-free, was still among one of the best of his administration thus far.
However, the good vibes abroad do not overshadow the bad at home. Investigations seem to be targeting Trump’s son-in-law. Kushner seems to have sought some sort of private connection with the Kremlim, and if you were to believe half the rumors in and around Washington, there might just be an actual scandal in the making.
Not to mention, the people who are at home while he was away are still fighting among themselves for hours.
And, his supporters cheer him on, defending every little thing as media hypocrisy, media lies/fake news, and “What about Obama/Hillary?!?!” While some of what they say is certainly valid, it is not an absolute defense of the man and his words and actions.
Trump is chaos, plain and simple. The Republican Party has twisted itself into supporting him, and the conservative movement has embraced the chaos. Both of these entities, which until 2016 made up what we called “The Right,” have turned away from being a movement of ideas. As I mentioned last week, there is no moral authority for the Republican Party anymore. It has been thrown away for this new era of chaos, ushered in by a man we knew good and damn well would be this kind of president.
At some point, we decided that disruption was our calling. We decided we wanted to shake up Washington D.C. rather than elect people who could effectively help turn government around. We wanted to “drain the swamp,” without a care in the world as to whether or not the water we pumped back in was fresh.
This disruption, this chaos, has turned what should have been the single greatest opportunity for the Republican Party into its last, failed stand.
Sure, it is early in the Trump Era and he may yet turn it around. There is certainly the potential for that, after all. The Cabinet picks were, mostly, good. His pick for Supreme Court has promise. However, when it comes to the very things that throw his administration into disarray – the in-fighting, the thin-skinned comments on Twitter, the attempts to validate his manhood, and his increasingly alarming compulsion to undermine his own staff – he is time and again shooting himself in the foot, and conservatives rush to his defense without a care for the fact that, yes, some of this is actually bad.
Saying any of this, however, is taboo. We can’t call Trump out on his mistakes. To do so is sabotage, anti-Republican and anti-American. We can’t call balls and strikes anymore because Trumpism (Chaosim?) is the most important thing we can push.
No thank you.