Some weeks back I wrote to express my support for Donald Trump. I haven’t changed my mind, except that now more than anything I’m anti-anti-Trump. I’m amused by the desperate efforts by people (especially those at another conservative site that will go unnamed) to show just how shocked, shocked they are at a hint of bad taste, and how really much more polite and civilized they are.
I am not so nice as them. I don’t sniff my delicate nose when people talk sharply. I’m not worked up about Trump’s manners. Or of those of the Fox interviewers, for that matter. They asked tough questions, and after all the smarmy, suck-up interviews with Obama it’s refreshing when newsmen do their job for once. By the way, do you remember the grief Chris Wallace got from the Left when he asked Obama semi-tough questions? You want the press to be lapdogs, as almost all of them are for Obama? Sometimes I worry that Americans have lost their gag reflex.
I do have a bone or two to pick with the debate, however. First, it really wasn’t much of a debate, in terms of a sharp exchange of views. The format, 10 people on the stage, prevented that. Better still are one-on-ones, Chris Christie and Rand Paul in the ring, mano-a-mano, body slams and all.
More seriously, I’d like to see more emphasis on the policies the candidates favor, and from his answers I had the sense that I agreed with Trump more than with anyone else.
What Trump understands is that the crucial issue in 2016 will be income inequality and immobility. George Will said in 2011 that if the Republicans lose the 2012 election they should get out of the business. And then they lost the election. Why? Because the issues of inequality and immobility dominated the debate. Obama told voters he had their back, while Romney looked like the boss who’d enjoy giving you the pink slip.
There’s no mystery about what the Democratic 2016 campaign will look like, with people like Hillary and Bernie Sanders. It’s going to be a replay of 2012, and Trump was about the only person who spoke to this, or at least tried to do so. What he recognizes is that the very idea of America, that this is the land of opportunity, has been lost and that an aristocracy has inserted itself in the folds of our democracy. He also recognizes that, if anyone can be blamed, it’s the Left and not the Right. The Left’s nostrums—higher taxes, minimum wage hikes, and the rest—would simply make things worse, and it’s the policies they favor that have betrayed the promise of America.
Our new aristocrats of the Left love a broken school system, which has stalled what should have been an elevator to the middle class. What they don’t want is competition from below, and so they support the teachers’ unions and oppose school choice and aid to parochial schools. Even a bird of prey knows not to foul its own nest, but then for our aristocrats it’s not their nest. It’s the nest of the Other.
We import inequality and immobility with the world’s stupidest immigration policies, admitting illegal aliens who take away jobs from Americans, especially black Americans. At the same time we send immigrants who would create jobs to other countries who value them more. That’s a great system, said no one ever. But if you’re an aristocrat who doesn’t want to admit competitors for his job but does want maids and gardeners for his house, why it’s very Heaven.
The Ragged Dicks who seek to rise from obscurity need a legal system that’s going to help and not hurt them. They’ll want courts to enforce contracts, and they won’t want to be sent to jail for technical, regulatory offenses that no one understands. They’ll be burdened by excessive bureaucratic rules that make it prohibitively costly to start up a new business. That used to be us, but it’s not anymore, and the beneficiary is an aristocracy that stifles competition from below.
Rudeness isn’t a mortal sin, guys. Stupidity is. It’s stupid to fixate over minor points of etiquette when the country is in serious decline. Trump gets that, and I like him for it.
So here’s a suggestion for Trump. If the Republicans don’t do debates, why not challenge Elizabeth Warren to a public debate? Heck, I’d enjoy that even more than seeing Chris Christie do a backflip and land on Rand Paul.
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