A Fine Whiskey with Victor Davis Hanson

 

In this great interview with Victor Davis Hanson, Dave Sussman makes a startling observation of Donald Trump and the erudite classicist Victor Davis Hanson, two men who would seem to differ as much as any in the public sphere in their character, background, and intellect, that each is “the everyman,” someone who speaks clearly to everyone and evinces a plainspoken authenticity.

He’s right. I think that, in Trump’s case, it is a matter of confidence and a willingness to engage any opponent. In Hanson’s, I suspect it’s an expression of deep integrity and a desire to understand and communicate carefully considered truths. But the impression is the same: an appealing lack of pretense, a blunt and compelling frankness, and a sense that the chaff of political correctness and poll-tested caution has been brushed aside in favor of simply telling it like it is.

Terrific guest, fine interview.

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There are 54 comments.

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  1. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette Post author

    Dave wins the Understatement of The Week award at 44:45 when he says “It’s almost as if [the Democrats] are apologetic for American exceptionalism.”

    Indeed. ;)

    • #1
    • March 26, 2019, at 8:32 PM PDT
    • 11 likes
  2. James Lileks Contributor

    Donald Trump and the erudite classicist Victor Davis Hanson, two men who would seem to differ as much as any in the public sphere in their character, background, and intellect, that each is “the everyman,” someone who speaks clearly to everyone and evinces a plainspoken authenticity.

    Eeeeeyeeeeahhh, I don’t know. Part of Trump’s “authentic” appeal derives from his New Yawk smash mouth style, and the need to demean and belittle – often justified, off-putting to some, rarely presidential in the accustomed sense – strikes me as the sign of someone who sees everything through the prism of his own ego. It’s hard for a narcissist to be an everyman. 

    On the other hand, he can strike those notes in a SOTU, and carry it off, because he’s the center of attention and feeling generous, and like all good pols, he has the ability to enter the script and the moment and buy his own BS. 

    VDH has a quiet, intense authenticity earned by experience and study; there’s something Lincolnesque about the man. Trump was a rich playboy real-estate developer. Yes, yes, Reagan was a movie actor, but he spent years in the wilderness studying and thinking, and calling in to Howard Stern is opine is not exactly the same. 

    I’m not saying Trump doesn’t connect with people, or that he doesn’t have an elemental grasp on basic issues that resonates with millions, but “everyman” is a stretch. For me. 

    Before anyone gets het up and calls me a NeverTrumper, none of the observations above would prevent me from voting for Trump in 2020. 

    • #2
    • March 26, 2019, at 9:53 PM PDT
    • 16 likes
  3. James Lileks Contributor

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    “It’s almost as if [the Democrats] are apologetic for American exceptionalism.”

    Apologetic? I’d say they’re apoplectic. 

    • #3
    • March 26, 2019, at 9:54 PM PDT
    • 14 likes
  4. Douglas Pratt Member

    James Lileks (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    “It’s almost as if [the Democrats] are apologetic for American exceptionalism.”

    Apologetic? I’d say they’re apoplectic.

    Beat me to it. American exceptionalism has been the prime target of progressives since they decided TR was not one of their crowd. If you can convince Americans that they are arrogant they will cease to be proud, and thereby cease defending themselves.

    • #4
    • March 27, 2019, at 3:05 AM PDT
    • 7 likes
  5. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette Post author

    James Lileks (View Comment):

    Donald Trump and the erudite classicist Victor Davis Hanson, two men who would seem to differ as much as any in the public sphere in their character, background, and intellect, that each is “the everyman,” someone who speaks clearly to everyone and evinces a plainspoken authenticity.

    Eeeeeyeeeeahhh, I don’t know. Part of Trump’s “authentic” appeal derives from his New Yawk smash mouth style, and the need to demean and belittle – often justified, off-putting to some, rarely presidential in the accustomed sense – strikes me as the sign of someone who sees everything through the prism of his own ego. It’s hard for a narcissist to be an everyman.

    James, I know: I wondered how that would read in the sober light of day.

    But, while I have a low opinion of Trump and a high opinion of Hanson, I think millions of Trump’s biggest enthusiasts appreciate precisely that unfiltered quality that, while revealing so much that’s unflattering about him, suggests that what you’re seeing is what he really is.

    To borrow from Lincoln: If he were two-faced, would he be wearing that one in public?

    • #5
    • March 27, 2019, at 4:56 AM PDT
    • 8 likes
  6. Songwriter Member

    Douglas Pratt (View Comment):

    James Lileks (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    “It’s almost as if [the Democrats] are apologetic for American exceptionalism.”

    Apologetic? I’d say they’re apoplectic.

    Beat me to it. American exceptionalism has been the prime target of progressives since they decided TR was not one of their crowd. If you can convince Americans that they are arrogant they will cease to be proud, and thereby cease defending themselves.

    I sum it up this way: Conservatives are proud to be American. Liberals are embarrassed to be American.

    • #6
    • March 27, 2019, at 5:37 AM PDT
    • 5 likes
  7. WI Con Member

    I feel that so much of VDH’s appeal and credibility to me vs. a typical academic is that that he still is involved in his family farm, he relays the contemporary view of life from the forgotten ‘heartland’, that he taught students at a non-elite institution, that he’s named in honor of a fallen uncle from WWII and that he chose a field of study that examines our (the ‘West’s) history and basis of its institutions.

    It is an often abused moniker, but VDH truly is a Renaissance Man.

    • #7
    • March 27, 2019, at 5:49 AM PDT
    • 10 likes
  8. Vectorman Thatcher

    Songwriter (View Comment):
    I sum it up this way: Conservatives are proud to be American. Liberals Leftists are embarrassed to be American.

    FIFY.

    • #8
    • March 27, 2019, at 5:53 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  9. Stad Thatcher

    James Lileks (View Comment):
    none of the observations above would prevent me from voting for Trump in 2020.

    What about Rob crying, begging you not to?

    • #9
    • March 27, 2019, at 6:05 AM PDT
    • 6 likes
  10. Stad Thatcher

    I look forward to listening to the podcast while I wheeze and grunt on the treadmill. Another podcast I recommend is Andrew Klavan #675, How The Left Fuels White Supremacy. Well worth a listen . . .

    • #10
    • March 27, 2019, at 6:07 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
  11. Jim McConnell Member

    Just a strange post to me; I can’t imagine two people more different in character than VDH and President Trump.

    • #11
    • March 27, 2019, at 6:26 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  12. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette Post author

    Jim McConnell (View Comment):

    Just a strange post to me; I can’t imagine two people more different in character than VDH and President Trump.

    I agree.

    I’m reminded of something Steven Hayward said in a recent speech at Yale. He described a study that found that liberals talk down to blacks more often than conservatives do. I have a hard time imagining either Hanson or Trump changing their style of delivery to pander to a black audience: Hanson because he wouldn’t, and Trump because he doesn’t care — and probably can’t anyway.

    • #12
    • March 27, 2019, at 6:41 AM PDT
    • 8 likes
  13. rgbact Member

    A 2 paragraph summary of VDH’s interview, with zero actual content, and heaping amounts of adjectives. Not your best.

    Anyway, I listened to a bit. Sussman at least attempts to push back(barely) on some of VDH’s Trumpian monologues, which is rare for these interviews that VDH has been doing. There still really isn’t a “Case for Trump”, but more just a “Case for why Trump isn’t any worse than any normal Republican president would be”. I still haven’t heard his compelling case for why we needed a crazy man to push thru these oh so normal Republican policies. Mostly, VDH just pushes his typical NT strawman arguments (they called me a Nazi!, they went Russia crazy, the midterms never happened) and Sussman eats it all up.

     

    • #13
    • March 27, 2019, at 10:10 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  14. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette Post author

    rgbact (View Comment):

    A 2 paragraph summary of VDH’s interview, with zero actual content, and heaping amounts of adjectives. Not your best.

    Thank you. I appreciate the feedback. There actually was a point to the post, beyond simply suggesting that people listen to the interview. I quoted Dave’s “everyman” comment, which I thought illustrated an interesting and ironic truth: in entirely different ways, these two very different men represent authenticity. In Hanson’s case, it’s the simple authenticity of a man who knows and speaks the truth. In Trump’s case, it’s the peculiar authenticity of a man who is himself, warts and all, regardless of what people think. As I thought about how often I’ve heard people say one or another version of “Trump says what we’re all thinking,” it occurred to me that Dave was right. (Trump doesn’t say what we’re all thinking, but he says what a lot of people are thinking, and I think that’s the essence of his appeal to his most stalwart supporters.)

    Anyway, I listened to a bit. Sussman at least attempts to push back(barely) on some of VDH’s Trumpian monologues, which is rare for these interviews that VDH has been doing. There still really isn’t a “Case for Trump”, but more just a “Case for why Trump isn’t any worse than any normal Republican president would be”. I still haven’t heard his compelling case for why we needed a crazy man to push thru these oh so normal Republican policies. Mostly, VDH just pushes his typical NT strawman arguments (they called me a Nazi!, they went Russia crazy, the midterms never happened) and Sussman eats it all up.

    I don’t care for the title of The Case for Trump, because I think Hanson offers more of an explanation than a defense. (As I think he has said elsewhere, he didn’t choose the title.) Part of that explanation helps us understand why we “needed a crazy man,” rather than a normal Republican. It wasn’t that only Trump could deregulate, move the embassy in Israel, secure the border, and appoint good judges. It was that Trump spoke to people who weren’t going to hear the message from any other Republican candidate, because the other candidates were not focused on the middle American working class demographic with which Trump chose to establish rapport.

    I don’t like arguing counterfactuals, don’t think it accomplishes much, and so I avoid the “only Trump could have won” kinds of debates. But, when trying to explain the strangely intense popularity, within his base, of a strange and often off-putting man, it’s worth trying to understand the demographic to which he addressed himself. I think Hanson does a fine job of describing that demographic, and describing how Trump managed to connect with it.

     

     

     

    • #14
    • March 27, 2019, at 11:02 AM PDT
    • 6 likes
  15. Henry Castaigne Member

    I wrote a post awhile back about why Trump was necessary. One time at a martial arts tournament, in a light touch to sparring match a member of my school was just being wailed on by someone from another school. My honorable Teacher asked to judges to intervene but the judges were from the same same school as the wailer so no can do. After a few rounds, my honorable Teacher told his student to also start wailing on the guy. Immediately, the judges intervened and a resumption of the decent rules were followed. 

    In a similar fashion, I can’t blame Trump for boasting about how is completely exonerated he is on twitter and to anyone who will listen. The media won’t do their job so what else can Trump do but bypass the media and in a loud and not very polite voice? I like rules and decorum and politeness but that doesn’t work if the rules only apply to one side. VDH has been accussed of what-aboutism but how do you intend to advocate for decent principles if you excuse half of the political spectrum for misbehaviour. 

    • #15
    • March 27, 2019, at 11:27 AM PDT
    • 9 likes
  16. rgbact Member

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    I don’t care for the title of The Case for Trump, because I think Hanson offers more of an explanation than a defense.

    So now there is no case for Trump. He’s just a normal Republican. In previous podcasts, VDH made the case for nasty politics. He is an admirer of Lee Atwater and nasty politicos of the past. He has this weird notion that the hapless Republicans were way too nice (I guess they won landslides in 2010 and 2014 despite their weakness) and we really needed a nasty guy not so obsessed with facts to have any hope against the superior Left. That seems like his lone “Case for Trump”….and I think its bad. Its done nothing but drive political discourse ever lower.

    Also, VDH seems completely oblivious of the losses in the midterm and Trump’s inability to connect with educated voters. In his mind, the economy solves all, and Trumpism is riding high and it really doesn’t matter that Trump has zero agenda for the rest of his presidency.

     

     

     

    • #16
    • March 27, 2019, at 12:23 PM PDT
    • Like
  17. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette Post author

    rgbact (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    I don’t care for the title of The Case for Trump, because I think Hanson offers more of an explanation than a defense.

    So now there is no case for Trump.

    That word “so” implies that you see a causal link between my statement and your conclusion — between the suggestion that Hanson did not write a case for Trump and the assertion that, therefore, a case for Trump does not exist. That would be to grant the formidable man of letters more authority than even I can accept: I’m sure there are a great many very real and extant things about which Victor Davis Hanson has not yet taken pen to paper.

    But seriously, I think there is a very good case to be made for Trump — specifically, for re-electing him in 2020. Put most briefly: I think the only plausible alternative to Trump in 2020 is either a Democrat or Bernie Sanders, and I think Trump is vastly superior to either.

    He’s just a normal Republican.

    I don’t think so. I think he’s quite an anomaly, a man with the crudity and lack of character of a Democrat but, for the most part, the governing style of a conservative Republican. He wasn’t what I’d have chosen, but I’m generally pleased with the job he’s doing.

    In previous podcasts, VDH made the case for nasty politics. He is an admirer of Lee Atwater and nasty politicos of the past. He has this weird notion that the hapless Republicans were way too nice (I guess they won landslides in 2010 and 2014 despite their weakness) and we really needed a nasty guy not so obsessed with facts to have any hope against the superior Left. That seems like his lone “Case for Trump”….and I think its bad. Its done nothing but drive political discourse ever lower.

    I don’t like nasty politics. I strive for civility and graciousness, and I’d prefer it in my politicians as well. However, I’m willing to vote for someone who lacks those qualities if the alternative is someone who will lurch us ever closer to socialism and disaster, and, as I said above, I think that’s the choice we have in 2020.

    Incidentally, I think that “done nothing but drive political discourse ever lower” bit is mistaken. I think any Republican is going to be savaged by the press, as Bush was savaged, as McCain and Romney were savaged, as Trump was savaged. Back in 2000 I remarked that we had seen the gloves come off of the mainstream media: any effort to retain the pretense of impartiality was over, and we’d be pitted against a leftist, activist press essentially forevermore. I believe that’s true.

    I think the choice now is either to push back against the press and other elite opinion-shaping organizations, or to yield to them. Pushing back effectively and graciously is very difficult, likely more than all but the best communicators can manage. Reagan could probably do it, no one since him has had the skill. Trump doesn’t either; he has the effective part down, the gracious bit not at all. I can live with that, if that’s the best I can get, and it seems to be.

    Also, VDH seems completely oblivious of the losses in the midterm and Trump’s inability to connect with educated voters. In his mind, the economy solves all, and Trumpism is riding high and it really doesn’t matter that Trump has zero agenda for the rest of his presidency.

    I suspect Hanson is aware that we took a hard hit in the midterms — not a catastrophically hard hit, but a loss nonetheless. (He might even share my view that at least part of it was self-inflicted by conservatives who, for reasons I think are ill-considered and misguided, made themselves part of the opposition and called for even larger Democratic victories. But I can’t speak for Hanson.)

    The economy is doing quite well, and I think the President deserves a lot of credit for that. He went into office saying that we had to deregulate, and he’s deregulated wonderfully. If he’ll continue that for two more years, and get a bunch more judges appointed, and improve border security a bit, and clean out a bit more of the corruption in the justice department, I’ll be pretty content with that agenda. Making government less obtrusive isn’t rocket science, and doesn’t require anything more than what he’s already announced he’s interested in doing.


    I do think that many people are mistaken about what exactly is the uniqueness of Trump. I think a lot of people believe that all the acrimony and vitriol is a consequence of Trump’s character and his flaws. I disagree. I think it’s a consequence of Trump’s failure to collapse in the face of a hostile press and hostile opinion-shaping elite, and that anyone, however gracious and saintly, would experience the same if he didn’t acquiesce. Trump adds his own ugliness because that’s his style, but the anger and the hostility is inspired by his unwillingness to surrender, and will be inflicted on any Republican who doesn’t back down in the face of it.

    Consider that abuse that the extraordinarily anodyne Romney and Kavanaugh experienced, if you don’t think that’s true.

     

     

     

     

    • #17
    • March 27, 2019, at 2:06 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  18. Dave Sussman Contributor

    Henry Racette: In this great interview with Victor Davis Hanson, Dave Sussman makes a startling observation of Donald Trump and the erudite classicist Victor Davis Hanson, two men who would seem to differ as much as any in the public sphere in their character, background, and intellect, that each is “the everyman,” someone who speaks clearly to everyone and evinces a plainspoken authenticity.

    Thanks Hank, once again. Appreciate your words.

    First, I like VDH and don’t pretend to be unbiased. His books, perpetual clarity on the issues of the day and ability to take what so many conservatives. libertarians and classic liberals innately feel and put in concise spoken and written word is a rare talent.

    Regarding the comment on the everyman, I am not suggesting VDH is Trump or Dangerfield in Caddyshack. I think you nailed it, but for others, it’s about both their abilities to communicate.

    VDH, a man with a superior intellect, is surrounded by brilliant minds but many of those colleagues’ ability to communicate ideas may be constrained by the cozy confines of academia and a patrician disposition whereby to say something considered controversial or political could be viewed as gauche. VDH is the honey badger of conservative intellect. He doesn’t give a blank.

    It’s not hard to understand why. He was born, raised and still chooses to live on a farm in a place most sophisticates would only rapidly drive through on their way to the Bay Area or LA. This has allowed Victor to successfully straddle the divide between both camps.

    Trump, whatever your thoughts of the man, is a billionaire, has met with the most powerful people on earth, succeeded in many categories (and yes failed too, which is not a bad thing as long as he got back up again) and when he speaks, he is speaking to every hard-working, honest person out there who put their trust in previous Republicans, only to watch them A. Never fight back when attacked and B. Usually end up in the squishy middle on issues. Democrat-lite Republicanism has disappointed many conservatives and we were looking for a bare-knuckle street brawler who would not be deterred by the dirty cheaters he has to fight.

    Case in point: The recent and ongoing episode VDH has had to endure from his own side, former political allies. Victor responded, much like Trump would have and for most people, it was exactly how they wished they could have themselves.

    • #18
    • March 27, 2019, at 2:35 PM PDT
    • 13 likes
  19. Songwriter Member

    Vectorman (View Comment):

    Songwriter (View Comment):
    I sum it up this way: Conservatives are proud to be American. Liberals Leftists are embarrassed to be American.

    FIFY.

    Liberal. Leftist. Progressive. Democrat. Socialist. etc…

    • #19
    • March 27, 2019, at 3:06 PM PDT
    • Like
  20. Vectorman Thatcher

    Songwriter (View Comment):

    Vectorman (View Comment):

    Songwriter (View Comment):
    I sum it up this way: Conservatives are proud to be American. Liberals Leftists are embarrassed to be American.

    FIFY.

    Liberal. Leftist. Progressive. Democrat. Socialist. etc…

    There have been proud Americans of the Liberal / Democrat persuasion: Scoop Jackson, Zell Miller, JFK, even Daniel Patrick Moynihan. You could discuss issues with them and come to a compromise. The other three labels are hopeless.

    • #20
    • March 27, 2019, at 3:48 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  21. rgbact Member

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Consider that abuse that the extraordinarily anodyne Romney and Kavanaugh experienced, if you don’t think that’s true.

    IDK, I don’t think in the entire 2008 campaign the Democrats were as nasty to John McCain as Donald Trump has been. I’m not even sure Kavanaugh would have been treated as bad if another Republican had nominated him.

    As for the rest, I’m simply trying to assess all these “cases” for Trump:. I’m not seeing many policy cases from Trumpers, in fact they make a point to say Trump is pushing normal GOP ideas. You mentioned “authenticity”, which is fine. Then we go back to VDH’s case for nasty politics and that Trump is Shane to the GOP, the guy willing to fight nasty because the cowards won’t. Honestly, I see that as the worst “case” of all. Its embarassing that this is the way an “intellectual” thinks. Nasty politics is desperate politics. Its devoid of ideas and persuades nobody.

     

     

     

     

     

    • #21
    • March 27, 2019, at 6:29 PM PDT
    • Like
  22. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette Post author

    rgbact (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Consider that abuse that the extraordinarily anodyne Romney and Kavanaugh experienced, if you don’t think that’s true.

    IDK, I don’t think in the entire 2008 campaign the Democrats were as nasty to John McCain as Donald Trump has been. I’m not even sure Kavanaugh would have been treated as bad if another Republican had nominated him.

    As for the rest, I’m simply trying to assess all these “cases” for Trump:. I’m not seeing many policy cases from Trumpers, in fact they make a point to say Trump is pushing normal GOP ideas. You mentioned “authenticity”, which is fine. Then we go back to VDH’s case for nasty politics and that Trump is Shane to the GOP, the guy willing to fight nasty because the cowards won’t. Honestly, I see that as the worst “case” of all. Its embarassing that this is the way an “intellectual” thinks. Nasty politics is desperate politics. Its devoid of ideas and persuades nobody.

    I suppose it depends on what the options are.

    If the choice is between someone who is rude and abrasive and petty, but pushes back hard and embarrasses the press, and someone who achieves the same thing while being gracious and thoughtful about it, I’ll take gracious and thoughtful.

    On the other hand, if it’s between someone who is rude and abrasive and petty, but pushes back hard and embarrasses the press, and someone who is unwilling to directly engage the press and so is batted around by it, then I guess I’ll take rude and abrasive and petty.

    My impression of McCain is that he cared quite a bit about what the press thought, and enjoyed his reputation as the “maverick” who was willing to poke his own party in the eye. The press loved that as well.

    And Romney, bless his heart, let the press walk all over him.

    I worked for the McCain campaign and I enthusiastically voted for Romney. I’d have appreciated either as President. But Trump won, and I like what he’s doing — and also how the public opinion of the press is shifting as it reveals itself ever more clearly under Trump’s often crude and petty prompting.


    None of which matters to me as much as preventing a Democratic victory in 2020, which gets me back to the main point: it will almost certainly be Trump or a Democrat. I’ll take Trump.

     

     

     

     

    • #22
    • March 27, 2019, at 6:50 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  23. Songwriter Member

    Vectorman (View Comment):

    Songwriter (View Comment):

    Vectorman (View Comment):

    Songwriter (View Comment):
    I sum it up this way: Conservatives are proud to be American. Liberals Leftists are embarrassed to be American.

    FIFY.

    Liberal. Leftist. Progressive. Democrat. Socialist. etc…

    There have been proud Americans of the Liberal / Democrat persuasion: Scoop Jackson, Zell Miller, JFK, even Daniel Patrick Moynihan. You could discuss issues with them and come to a compromise. The other three labels are hopeless.

    Agreed. But as you said – “Have been.” That’s all in the past now.

    • #23
    • March 28, 2019, at 5:32 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  24. CarolJoy, Above Top Secret Coolidge

    James Lileks (View Comment):

    Donald Trump and the erudite classicist Victor Davis Hanson, two men who would seem to differ as much as any in the public sphere in their character, background, and intellect, that each is “the everyman,” someone who speaks clearly to everyone and evinces a plainspoken authenticity.

    Eeeeeyeeeeahhh, I don’t know. Part of Trump’s “authentic” appeal derives from his New Yawk smash mouth style, and the need to demean and belittle – often justified, off-putting to some, rarely presidential in the accustomed sense – strikes me as the sign of someone who sees everything through the prism of his own ego. It’s hard for a narcissist to be an everyman.

    On the other hand, he can strike those notes in a SOTU, and carry it off, because he’s the center of attention and feeling generous, and like all good pols, he has the ability to enter the script and the moment and buy his own BS.

    SNIP

    I’m not saying Trump doesn’t connect with people, or that he doesn’t have an elemental grasp on basic issues that resonates with millions, SNIP

    Before anyone gets het up and calls me a NeverTrumper, none of the observations above would prevent me from voting for Trump in 2020.

    If Trump was the narcissist that every other pundit in America claims him to be, he would be putting his energy into setting up a Bank Of Trump, rather than his attempting to put things in order with regards to America’s trade deals, rather than his pulling us out of the disastrous climate change drains on our businesses and tax dollars, rather than his meeting with North Korea’s leader to prevent the incineration of Hawai’i, and on and on. Oh and he made the right decision in seeing that the Boeing airliners were grounded as well, with even the heroic pilot Sully saying that needed to happen.

    Consider also that almost everything he does is lambasted by the media. As he once quipped, it could be announced that he singlehandedly cured cancer, and the press would either say he did it for profit, or else smear him with their question of “why the hell did it take you so long?”

    I can’t help but think that any president who answers a shouted out query of “Will you celebrate when you are given a Nobel Prize for your work with Kim Jung-un?” and the man replies with “Peace itself is the prize and it is the prize for everyone,” is hardly a narcissist. From time to time he may play at being one. But it is always for some advantage that most pundits do not see.

    • #24
    • March 28, 2019, at 11:31 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
  25. Jim Beck Member

    “It is almost as if (the Democrats) are apologetic for American Exceptionalism”, that is unless like the media they are denying that America was ever exceptional or great, thank you Eric Holder for making it clear, again. Trump is unlike many even in the Republican Party, he is for our country, our workers, our way of life, and he makes this clear both at home and abroad, thankfully. Concerning Trump’s language, I have worked in factories, doing hot tar roofing, in foundries and with foundries for 50 years, Trump talks like the men at those job sites. I would trust those men any day.

    • #25
    • March 28, 2019, at 12:48 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  26. Petty Boozswha Member

    I’ve only read down to Lilek’s comment but I have to take a break. I really think you must have written this with the intent to make my eyes pinwheel and smoke come out of my ears – Trump described in the same paragraph with authenticity and character? I guess once you learn how to fake that you’ve got it made.

    • #26
    • March 28, 2019, at 12:50 PM PDT
    • Like
  27. Stad Thatcher

    rgbact (View Comment):
    IDK, I don’t think in the entire 2008 campaign the Democrats were as nasty to John McCain as Donald Trump has been.

    They were pretty nasty, but once McCain lost, they fell in love with him again. More so when Trump won. I suspect McCain put up with the hate because maybe he knew he was going to lose, and would soon be back in good graces with the MSM.

    • #27
    • March 28, 2019, at 12:50 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  28. Sweezle Member

    Oh my! VDH explained succinctly all that is wrong with Bill Kristol, Charlie Sykes and The Bulwark.

    • #28
    • March 28, 2019, at 1:05 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  29. Petty Boozswha Member

    Dave Sussman (View Comment):

    Trump, whatever your thoughts of the man, is a billionaire, has met with the most powerful people on earth, succeeded in many categories (and yes failed too, which is not a bad thing as long as he got back up again) and when he speaks, he is speaking to every hard-working, honest person out there who put their trust in previous Republicans, only to watch them A. Never fight back when attacked and B. Usually end up in the squishy middle on issues. Democrat-lite Republicanism has disappointed many conservatives and we were looking for a bare-knuckle street brawler who would not be deterred by the dirty cheaters he has to fight.

    Trump is a billionaire only because the bankruptcy laws of this country, as applied to big banks and massively brazen creditors in ‘”pre-packaged filings,” would make Jussie Smollett blush at their corruption. Trump has skated his whole life, he has complete contempt for the hard-working honest person out there. You can tell when he smirks his way through saying “we love the poorly educated” or “I could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and these Trumpkins would support me.” He is not Shane, he’s Edward G. Robinson’s Dathan in The Ten Commandments, an unredeemable demagogue.

    • #29
    • March 28, 2019, at 1:24 PM PDT
    • Like
  30. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette Post author

    CarolJoy, Above Top Secret (View Comment):
    If Trump was the narcissist that every other pundit in America claims him to be

    Oh, I think he is. I thought he was when I voted for him. I expect him to be when I vote for him again.

    I can live with that.

    • #30
    • March 28, 2019, at 2:26 PM PDT
    • 1 like
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