Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. The Flynn Matter: Distraction or Constitutional Crisis?

 

I refer here to the Andrew Klavan podcast featuring Jonah Goldberg as his guest. If you haven’t listened, I recommend it. It’s revealing of just how the priorities of Principled Conservatism Inc. are distorted and what a low opinion PCI has of people on its own side of policy issues and basic values.

I will try to emulate Andrew Klavan here and give a fair assessment of Goldberg’s views without using the type of loaded language he uses in the interview to accuse his own side of malfeasance. And that’s what he does — accuse. He doesn’t really make arguments for his anti-Trump positions other than his strong opinion that Trump is doing it wrong! Neither does he explain his minimization of the Flynn matter in comparison to the three major crises we face (his list): Pandemic, economic, and social chaos in the streets. 

Let me start by explaining my own prioritization scheme. I fold the Flynn Matter into the entire Russia-Ukraine-Impeachment-Hoax, Obamagate complex. I’ve read enough to believe that, whatever Michael Flynn’s personal and professional failings (that Jonah asserts deserved scrutiny), he posed a threat to Obama administration officials which is why the FBI had to neutralize him. Destroy him. This was of a piece with the Obama administration/DNCs successful subversion of the peaceful transition of power for, arguably, the first time in our nation’s history since the Civil War. Donald Trump didn’t have a single day of honeymoon (remember the pussy hat march the day after?) and the jackals have been at his heels every moment since his inauguration. 

Now, maybe other Trump-supporting right-wingers will put pandemic, economic failure, or social chaos above the crisis in constitutional law and order, but it’s #1 for me. And part of my reasoning — and, yes, I’m going to argue from authority here — is listening to constitutional law professor Hugh Hewitt, and John Yoo, and Richard Epstein — these fellows who are no Trump sycophants. They seem gravely concerned with the January 5, 2017, Oval Office meeting where President Obama seemed not only informed about the subversive operation, but to be actually directing it. Hugh Hewitt says he’s always been reluctant to use the term, “constitutional crisis,” and he’s obviously distressed that it applies in this case. 

The whole idea that Michael Flynn was a Russian agent or that the Trump campaign had the wherewithal (even the organizational competence) to enlist the Russians to influence the election — or that Putin would even have preferred Donald Trump to Hillary “Reset” (“Overcharge” in Russian) Clinton is ludicrous. The Russians wanted to sow chaos in our election process and the Democrats and the Obama cabinet and department heads obliged. 

So here’s my prioritized list of crises:

  1. Subversion of constitutional law and order at the highest levels of our government
  2. Cultural and social decay (Jonah’s riots in the streets) — subversion of (common) law and order at the lowest levels of society
  3. Economic disaster (from which we will not recover without law and order)
  4. Pandemic

Finally, I want to (roughly) transcribe some of what Jonah said and provide my comments. 

In the category of accusation and bad faith assessments of right-wingers who support the President:

“People who love Donald Trump want to give themselves permission structure[?] to just dismiss real criticism.” — this was in response to Klavan saying he understands why Jonah would hate Donald Trump and Jonah being accused of “irrational hatred.” [I don’t even know what “permission structure” means, but I’d say it’s a straw man that supporters consistently dismiss “real” criticism. It’s also condescending to say “people who love” the president rather than call us “Trump supporters.]

[Supporters] “tune out legitimate criticism.” [This presumes Jonah knows what is a “legitimate” criticism and that Trump supporters universally tune them out.]

He said twice, once at the beginning and once near the end: “People get to pick the media outlets that tell them what they want to hear rather than what they need to hear. [Again, presumes that Trump supporters are not hearing the other side (Jonah, I guess) and that Jonah knows what we need to hear. It seems to me it’s almost impossible for any conservative to lack exposure to the opposing side, given the heavy preponderance of progressive media, entertainment, and education outlets.]

[McEnany] “makes things worse. . . When it was in her interest in her career to be anti-Trump, she was anti-Trump. . .” and then the opposite. [presumes that McEnany is a grifter and an opportunist. Jonah makes it sound like no one who works on behalf of this president can be sincerely supportive or ever have changed her mind about him. — almost the definition of bad faith.]

“[McEnany] is a surrogate for Donald Trump and those coronavirus task force press conferences. Trump tried to turn those into mini-rallies for two hours per day. It took weeks for aids to explain it wasn’t helping.” [Wasn’t helping whom? Again, Jonah presumes he knows the right way to conduct the office of the presidency in a pandemic crisis — or at least he knows Donald Trump is just doing it wrong!]

“He was doing a disservice to the country during a pandemic and now Kayleigh gets to go on and do the same shtick and to change the narrative to — not about the pandemic, but about Flynn.” [Yeah, wow. It’s about time someone took control of the narrative from the Left. You would think a conservative would appreciate the effort. Also, Flynn and Obamagate turn out to be way more important than the pandemic — see above. Also see Rod Rosenstein’s Congressional testimony and the reaction to it of Republican senators.]

“Amazing at a time of three crises: pandemic, economic calamity, crazy riots and urban unrest — Donald Trump wants to simply play the same narrative game for the same 34% of the country that sticks with him no matter what.” [When should we NOT stick with the duly elected president who is advancing our agenda? When he subverts the rule of law or turns against us, but otherwise? When he tweets something Jonah finds offensive? I don’t Twitter and maybe Jonah should give it up for his own sanity. Is it always a “cult” to support a president’s actions of which you approve, even when you note his flawed character, and choose not to talk about it much?]

“Whether a strategy or he’s incapable of playing the role of president to the entire country the way the entire MM core celebrates that he’s doing this — tweeting works for him.” [Condescending, offensive, and false. Donald Trump’s policies have benefited the entire country — see pre-COVID unemployment among minorities, for example. Maybe Jonah would rather have someone like Obama “pretend” to be president of the entire country while subverting the rule of law and using identity politics to divide and conquer, but I’ll take Trump’s actions favorable to the entire country, thank you. I don’t care about his tweets!]

“Turns away more voters than he attracts with all of this shtick.” [Maybe, but we won’t know until November. Presumptuous and, frankly, arrogant given how wrong pundits have been about all things Trump (he can’t possibly win, he’s an authoritarian, he’s mentally unstable, . . .)]

“I don’t see why a lot of people can’t see it. It’s all performative. He wants to be a pundit. He keeps talking about how he has total authority, but he doesn’t want any responsibility for all sorts of things. And he’s not acting like a president and she’s there [McEnany] to celebrate that fact.” [He’s not presidenting right!! Yes, we’ve heard this before. He’s affecting changes we want to see, so we’re not terribly concerned about his style. At least, not unless he actually loses because of it in November. But, I still won’t find Biden voters’ choice respectable just because they disapprove of Trump’s style. I’ll believe their decision is ridiculous and dangerous.]

“You’re supposed to, at least, you are now everybody’s president, not just the people who love you the most and excuse all of your wild and ridiculous behavior because it generates liberal tears mugs for you guys. There’s got to be something more to the presidency than that.” [Like policy? Like appointments? Like avoiding foreign wars by targeted shows of force? Like devolving power back to the states? Or encouraging Congress to do its job? Yes, I agree, there’s more to the presidency than style points for making liberal (leftist) cry. That’s just icing.]

“My problem was, you had a reporter asking Kayleigh a very specific question: ‘What authority does the president of the United States have to override governors’ — which the president had just said. He said, ‘I’m gonna override the governors if they don’t reopen the churches’ and reporters asked Kayleigh ‘where does he have that authority?’ SPOILER ALERT: he doesn’t, and she dodged the question. . . she hedged. . shucked and jived about it. She said it must just be because you guys don’t want to see churches reopen and you don’t like religion and went with the boob bait.” [Yes, we’re all such boobs for believing the Left (Democrat governors and mayors) don’t like Christianity and Judaism (ask the Jews in de Blasio’s NYC) and would like to keep our churches and synagogues closed. And, last I checked, the President has authority over the Department of Justice, which is commissioned to protect our Constitutional First Amendment rights. So, yeah, I think he could override governors who won’t let us congregate in our faith communities, but will let us congregate in Costco.]

“Now, the thing is there was a time when cons. . . like all of the stuff that you want the media to do? Properly? All this stuff that Mollie Hemingway and all these people who say the media is so terrible? Asking where the president gets the constitutional authority to be able to override the governors and order churches opened — or closed — is a perfectly legitimate question. And rather than answer it, she pivots to this sort of talk radio nonsense.” [Nonsense. Got it.]

“What I’m not gonna do for this president or the frickin’ GOP is lie for them. Or constantly say, ‘Yeah, what he did was bad, but the real issue is X.’ But X is either a red herring or a distraction or just more fan service.” [Subverting constitutional law and order — a sitting administration of the opposing party using the power of the IC to conduct a counterintelligence operation against its duly elected successor — is not a distraction nor is it “fan service” to prioritize it. It’s the most dangerous thing to have happened in our politics in our lifetimes. It is an attempted coup and an assault on self-rule.]

——————————————————

In the category of painfully obvious assertions:

[Kayleigh McEnany] is a surrogate for Donald Trump. [Well, yes. Why does every president in modern times get a press secretary who is a “surrogate” except Donald Trump?]

“I don’t see myself working either for or against either party. . .” [Yes, noted. If you’re not for us, you’re against us in this life and death struggle to wrest the republic from the Left.]

“I haven’t changed my position on anything![Also noted. Foolish consistency is the hobgoblin. . .]

——————————————–

In the category of offensive terminology:

“Fawning about Trump.” [said about McEnany]

“Fan service” [said about the NYT and Trump supportive outlets]

“Simply looking to have their priors confirmed.” [about Trump supporters]

“Same shtick” [McEnany press conferences compared to coronavirus briefings]

“Plays great in the echo chamber on the Right.” [McEnany press conferences]

“Sticks with him no matter what” and “cult of personality.”

“MM core” [had to look this up, but apparently MM stands for mutual masturbation. Nice.]

“Boob bait”

“Saul Alinsky envy”

————————————————

I will cut Jonah some slack, given that this was not a long-form interview and there were many more questions Klavan could have asked and Jonah could have answered. But, what I heard has provided affirmation of what I have thought about Jonah’s position all along: he finds the President insufferable and he can’t get past it. Too bad, because we’re going to need all hands on deck to defeat the Left this fall. It’s not above cheating and every manner of power play and isn’t inclined to let happen again what happened in 2016 — that is, to let the people decide. Jonah’s priorities are disordered.

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  1. Goldwaterwoman Thatcher

    Western Chauvinist: But, what I heard has provided affirmation of what I have thought about Jonah’s position all along: he finds the President insufferable and he can’t get past it. Too bad, because we’re going to need all hands on deck to defeat the Left this fall.

    So very true. All elections are important, but this one is crucial.

    • #1
    • June 5, 2020, at 5:07 PM PDT
    • 7 likes
  2. RightAngles Member

    Unbelievable.

    • #2
    • June 5, 2020, at 5:10 PM PDT
    • 7 likes
  3. Percival Thatcher
    Percival Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Jonah took up all the slack I could spare with his three-year-old whine-a-thon. It was tired back when the Mueller Report plopped out.

    You don’t like him, Jonah. Fine. Got it. So noted. Anything else?

    You still don’t like him? Imagine my shock.

    You hate the people who love him? Loving politicians is a category error. One shouldn’t; it is a mistake. “Put not your trust in princes” and all that. But hate? That is a little extreme.

    You don’t like people who don’t hate him? Well now you’ve cut me — cut me to the quick. I’ll sob bitter tears of shame and regret into my pillow tonight. Somehow, I’ll soldier on. But your heartfelt disapproval is a heavy weight to bear.

    Do they ever read the stuff that they’ve written? Do they expect anyone else to?

     

    • #3
    • June 5, 2020, at 5:13 PM PDT
    • 15 likes
  4. Goldwaterwoman Thatcher

    Percival (View Comment):
    You don’t like him, Jonah. Fine. Got it. So noted. Anything else?

    Mother’s Day must leave Jonah with quite the conundrum. 

    • #4
    • June 5, 2020, at 5:17 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  5. Ed G. Member
    Ed G. Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Thank you for doing this so thoroughly. I thought about doing it, but I didn’t have the time(or talent) to organize as expertly as you did here. You didn’t leave anything out and you’re correct about everything. This whole episode was a good reminder of just how some on the right went so wrong. In short, Trump hatred has warped those that didn’t start out warped. 

    • #5
    • June 5, 2020, at 5:24 PM PDT
    • 10 likes
  6. DonG (skeptic) Coolidge

    Western Chauvinist: The Russians wanted to sow chaos in our election process and the Democrats and the Obama cabinet and department heads obliged. 

    Is there any proof of that? I have not seen any. The whole Russia Hoas just part of the DNC/MSM propaganda. It continues now with media driven lockdown and now the media and Leftists are stirring up riots.

    Jonah is a weird cat. He understands conservative principles, but he has chosen to make a living though being an elitist grifter. 

    • #6
    • June 5, 2020, at 5:27 PM PDT
    • 9 likes
  7. Bruce Caward Thatcher
    Bruce Caward Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    DonG (skeptic) (View Comment):

    Western Chauvinist: The Russians wanted to sow chaos in our election process and the Democrats and the Obama cabinet and department heads obliged. 

    Is there any proof of that? I have not seen any. The whole Russia Hoas just part of the DNC/MSM propaganda. It continues now with media driven lockdown and now the media and Leftists are stirring up riots.

    Exactly.

    This has become one of those lines at the head of every sentence about Trump, like “Well, he’s obviously a big liar and a thoroughly disagreeable person, but…”. I want to stand athwart opening Trump lines and yell “Stop!” every time. 

    If the Ruskies wanted to sow chaos, just to screw with us, so what? Don’t they do that every time, in some way? Yes, if they’re doing their jobs properly. And we had better be doing it to them, otherwise what the hell are we paying for a CIA and a foreign service for???

    Aren’t the Chinese, Indians, British, Japanese, Indonesians (Lippo Group?), and probably the New Zealanders always poking around, looking for advantage if there is any? And don’t we spy on every one of them too?? We better be.

    And Trump a liar? He’s a freaking salesman! So he promotes, inflates, exaggerates, misdirects, controls the meeting. He’s real real good at it. Tell me some time when he out and out lied about a matter material to the welfare of the US, or to benefit himself at the expense of his oath of office.

    Obama declared that he had no idea Hillary had the private email set-up until he read about it in the papers. No idea. His own SecState, probably the most important member of his team. And zero idea that she was violating several laws and totally the security of sensitive communications vital to his success as president. Then it came out that he had communicated with her through her private set-up under an alias, many times.

    THAT is a lie. That matters.

    • #7
    • June 5, 2020, at 5:55 PM PDT
    • 8 likes
  8. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    DonG (skeptic) (View Comment):

    Western Chauvinist: The Russians wanted to sow chaos in our election process and the Democrats and the Obama cabinet and department heads obliged.

    Is there any proof of that? I have not seen any. The whole Russia Hoas just part of the DNC/MSM propaganda. It continues now with media driven lockdown and now the media and Leftists are stirring up riots.

    Jonah is a weird cat. He understands conservative principles, but he has chosen to make a living though being an elitist grifter.

    I’m only asserting that the Russians wanted to sow chaos in our election process just as they do every election. I don’t think Putin had a preference for Trump or Clinton, although Clinton was more of a known quantity and was well-positioned to be extorted over her corruption. I would guess, if anything, Putin would have preferred her. But, whatever effort the Russians made was minimal and it was the DNC and Obama’s people who generated chaos to spare. 

    • #8
    • June 5, 2020, at 6:48 PM PDT
    • 8 likes
  9. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Bruce Caward (View Comment):
    THAT is a lie. That matters.

    Indeed. As I’ve said before, Trump’s personal failings are inconsequential to my life as a US citizen. I only care about those things he does that affect the country, and he’s shown time and again to have our best interests in mind. 

    • #9
    • June 5, 2020, at 6:54 PM PDT
    • 7 likes
  10. Percival Thatcher
    Percival Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    DonG (skeptic) (View Comment):

    Western Chauvinist: The Russians wanted to sow chaos in our election process and the Democrats and the Obama cabinet and department heads obliged.

    Is there any proof of that? I have not seen any. The whole Russia Hoas just part of the DNC/MSM propaganda. It continues now with media driven lockdown and now the media and Leftists are stirring up riots.

    Jonah is a weird cat. He understands conservative principles, but he has chosen to make a living though being an elitist grifter.

    I’m only asserting that the Russians wanted to sow chaos in our election process just as they do every election. I don’t think Putin had a preference for Trump or Clinton, although Clinton was more of a known quantity and was well-positioned to be extorted over her corruption. I would guess, if anything, Putin would have preferred her. But, whatever effort the Russians made was minimal and it was the DNC and Obama’s people who generated chaos to spare.

    I think that she was better than “well-positioned.” I suspect that the SVR has every jot and tittle of Hillary’s emails, and I don’t mean the ones on the DNC server.

    • #10
    • June 5, 2020, at 7:07 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  11. Flicker Coolidge

    Everything that Goldberg has said or written in the past four years has been founded upon the primacy of an effete political savoir faire that Trump violates. It has nothing to do with policy, or law, or results, just a kick-my-butt-please-and-thank-you politically-courteous correctness masquerading as rectitude.

    • #11
    • June 5, 2020, at 7:31 PM PDT
    • 10 likes
  12. Unsk Member

    Western Chauv: “Subverting constitutional law and order — a sitting administration of the opposing party using the power of the IC to conduct a counterintelligence operation against its duly elected successor — is not a distraction nor is it fan service. It’s the most dangerous thing to have happened in our politics in our lifetimes. It is an attempted coup and an assault on self-rule.]”

    Exactly right. The Bottom Line of it all. 

    • #12
    • June 5, 2020, at 8:03 PM PDT
    • 8 likes
  13. Miffed White Male Member
    Miffed White Male Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Western Chauvinist: “My problem was, you had a reporter asking Kayleigh a very specific question: ‘What authority does the president of the United States have to override governors’ — which the president had just said. He said, ‘I’m gonna override the governors if they don’t reopen the churches’ and reporters asked Kayleigh ‘where does he have that authority?’ SPOILER ALERT: he doesn’t, and she dodged the question. . . she hedged. . shucked and jived about it. She said it must just be because you guys don’t want to see churches reopen and you don’t like religion and went with the boob bait.”

    That’s an easy one. The Supreme Court has ruled that the First Amendment applies to the States as well as the Federal Government. The President (whoever he is) is charged to “Preserve, Protect and Defend the Constitution…”. The First Amendment protects the rights of Free Assembly, and of Religion. The Supremacy clause of the Constitution says that the Constitution is the Supreme law of the land, and that where there is a conflict between the Constitution and state law/policy/edict, the Constitution wins.

    Next question.

     

     

    • #13
    • June 5, 2020, at 8:04 PM PDT
    • 9 likes
  14. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Miffed White Male (View Comment):

    Western Chauvinist: “My problem was, you had a reporter asking Kayleigh a very specific question: ‘What authority does the president of the United States have to override governors’ — which the president had just said. He said, ‘I’m gonna override the governors if they don’t reopen the churches’ and reporters asked Kayleigh ‘where does he have that authority?’ SPOILER ALERT: he doesn’t, and she dodged the question. . . she hedged. . shucked and jived about it. She said it must just be because you guys don’t want to see churches reopen and you don’t like religion and went with the boob bait.”

    That’s an easy one. The Supreme Court has ruled that the First Amendment applies to the States as well as the Federal Government. The President (whoever he is) is charged to “Preserve, Protect and Defend the Constitution…”. The First Amendment protects the rights of Free Assembly, and of Religion. The Supremacy clause of the Constitution says that the Constitution is the Supreme law of the land, and that where there is a conflict between the Constitution and state law/policy/edict, the Constitution wins.

    Next question.

    It would seem obvious, wouldn’t it?

    • #14
    • June 5, 2020, at 8:33 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  15. Miffed White Male Member
    Miffed White Male Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Miffed White Male (View Comment):

    Western Chauvinist: “My problem was, you had a reporter asking Kayleigh a very specific question: ‘What authority does the president of the United States have to override governors’ — which the president had just said. He said, ‘I’m gonna override the governors if they don’t reopen the churches’ and reporters asked Kayleigh ‘where does he have that authority?’ SPOILER ALERT: he doesn’t, and she dodged the question. . . she hedged. . shucked and jived about it. She said it must just be because you guys don’t want to see churches reopen and you don’t like religion and went with the boob bait.”

    That’s an easy one. The Supreme Court has ruled that the First Amendment applies to the States as well as the Federal Government. The President (whoever he is) is charged to “Preserve, Protect and Defend the Constitution…”. The First Amendment protects the rights of Free Assembly, and of Religion. The Supremacy clause of the Constitution says that the Constitution is the Supreme law of the land, and that where there is a conflict between the Constitution and state law/policy/edict, the Constitution wins.

    Next question.

    It would seem obvious, wouldn’t it?

    “Justice” Roberts apparently has a hard time figuring it out as well.

    We’re pretty much screwed.

     

    • #15
    • June 5, 2020, at 8:38 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  16. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Miffed White Male (View Comment):

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Miffed White Male (View Comment):

    Western Chauvinist: “My problem was, you had a reporter asking Kayleigh a very specific question: ‘What authority does the president of the United States have to override governors’ — which the president had just said. He said, ‘I’m gonna override the governors if they don’t reopen the churches’ and reporters asked Kayleigh ‘where does he have that authority?’ SPOILER ALERT: he doesn’t, and she dodged the question. . . she hedged. . shucked and jived about it. She said it must just be because you guys don’t want to see churches reopen and you don’t like religion and went with the boob bait.”

    That’s an easy one. The Supreme Court has ruled that the First Amendment applies to the States as well as the Federal Government. The President (whoever he is) is charged to “Preserve, Protect and Defend the Constitution…”. The First Amendment protects the rights of Free Assembly, and of Religion. The Supremacy clause of the Constitution says that the Constitution is the Supreme law of the land, and that where there is a conflict between the Constitution and state law/policy/edict, the Constitution wins.

    Next question.

    It would seem obvious, wouldn’t it?

    “Justice” Roberts apparently has a hard time figuring it out as well.

    We’re pretty much screwed.

    I still suspect the Left has something on Roberts. 

    • #16
    • June 5, 2020, at 8:40 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  17. Jon1979 Lincoln

    Flicker (View Comment):

    Everything that Goldberg has said or written in the past four years has been founded upon the primacy of an effete political savoir faire that Trump violates. It has nothing to do with policy, or law, or results, just a kick-my-butt-please-and-thank-you politically-courteous correctness masquerading as rectitude.

    I’d say it’s more a Manhattan-centric cynicism for Jonah, in having Trump in your life as an ubiquitous media presence since he was about 8, developing a general distaste for his hucksterism in general and his habit over the years of moving from the Democrats to the Republican and back again, depending on where the swing voters had gone, combined with a certain elitism that sees Trump as having never lost his Queens roughness in terms of taste and decorum.

    Andrew Klavan openly admits to feeling the same way during the 2015-16 period about Trump. But the difference between the two over the past three years has been Klavan has been willing to support Trump based on his political actions and give him credit for it, while realizing 2020 is a bianary choice between Trump and Joe Biden, and that there are stark differences between the two and their parties.

    Jonah has not done a Bill Kristol and allowed Trump to own his past political views — he’s willing to support something even if Trump supports it, which Kristol and other #NeverTrumpers won’t do. But he won’t give Trump any intellectual credit for his actions, basically saying either he doesn’t know why he did something conservative other this his own self-interest, or he’s just letting other people do conservative things for him, as with the Federalist Society and judicial nominees.

    He’s also taken to saying all the bad things he said Trump would do his first term, but didn’t, he’ll do if he’s re-elected, because he won’t have to face the voters again. Comes across as negative projection, while musings about four years under Biden is minimal, at best.

    • #17
    • June 5, 2020, at 9:21 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  18. Flicker Coolidge

    Jon1979 (View Comment):

    I’d say it’s more a Manhattan-centric cynicism for Jonah, in having Trump in your life as an ubiquitous media presence since he was about 8, developing a general distaste for his hucksterism in general and his habit over the years of moving from the Democrats to the Republican and back again, depending on where the swing voters had gone, combined with a certain elitism that sees Trump as having never lost his Queens roughness in terms of taste and decorum.

    Andrew Klavan openly admits to feeling the same way during the 2015-16 period about Trump. But the difference between the two over the past three years has been Klavan has been willing to support Trump based on his political actions and give him credit for it, while realizing 2020 is a bianary choice between Trump and Joe Biden, and that there are stark differences between the two and their parties.

    Jonah has not done a Bill Kristol and allowed Trump to own his past political views — he’s willing to support something even if Trump supports it, which Kristol and other #NeverTrumpers won’t do. But he won’t give Trump any intellectual credit for his actions, basically saying either he doesn’t know why he did something conservative other this his own self-interest, or he’s just letting other people do conservative things for him, as with the Federalist Society and judicial nominees.

    He’s also taken to saying all the bad things he said Trump would do his first term, but didn’t, he’ll do if he’s re-elected, because he won’t have to face the voters again. Comes across as negative projection, while musings about four years under Biden is minimal, at best.

    Well, then that’s Racist!, or at least that’s insufferable class haughtiness. Jonah goldberg was once a great man in my view. That was lost within a few weeks on the election results when goldberg couldn’t suffer to suck up his loss and write about anything (that I read, at least) without insulting Trump, as an aside, and out of context.

    If this is a Manhattan personality type searing itself over the ascension of a president with a Queens personality, then this is no better than anti-trumpers sneering and mocking, with a generic Georgia accent, those supposed hicks who scoff at education and “reading and math, and maps, and stuff”; and it also speaks very poorly of Manhattanites.

    And if it’s hucksterism that offends goldberg, at least Trump is open about his self-aggrandizing hucksterism; and yet goldberg has comparatively nothing personal to say against every other Republican politician who was a well-heeled and outwardly gracious covert huckster, who never really believed what he ran on.

    • #18
    • June 5, 2020, at 10:15 PM PDT
    • 8 likes
  19. Jon1979 Lincoln

    Flicker (View Comment):

    Well, then that’s Racist!, or at least that’s insufferable class haughtiness. Jonah goldberg was once a great man in my view. That was lost within a few weeks on the election results when goldberg couldn’t suffer to suck up his loss and write about anything (that I read, at least) without insulting Trump, as an aside, and out of context.

    If this is a Manhattan personality type searing itself over the ascension of a president with a Queens personality, then this is no better than anti-trumpers sneering and mocking, with a generic Georgia accent, those supposed hicks who scoff at education and “reading and math, and maps, and stuff”; and it also speaks very poorly of Manhattanites.

    And if it’s hucksterism that offends goldberg, at least Trump is open about his self-aggrandizing hucksterism; and yet goldberg has comparatively nothing personal to say against every other Republican politician who was a well-heeled and outwardly gracious covert huckster, who never really believed what he ran on.

    I suppose Trump’s ‘bad pants’ comment also irked Jonah, but I think it comes down to he doesn’t believe Trump’s changed from who he was 35-40 years ago, while Andrew’s willing to be more transactional, in that personality-wise, Trump may be the same ill-mannered person in 2020 he was in 1977, but politically he’s getting things done that should make conservatives happy for the most part (I didn’t vote for Trump in 2016 and shared Jonah’s fear that his support for conservative measures would only last as long as the swing voters looked to be supporting those ideas. But Trump did not move left with the swing voters after the 2018 midterms. You can say he didn’t have a choice thanks to the Dems’ and the media’s psychopathic anger at Trump, but he’s still in the conservative camp, and it seems petty to say unless Trump can diagram his reasoning on a philosophic basis, he doesn’t deserve credit for doing conservative things).

    • #19
    • June 5, 2020, at 10:59 PM PDT
    • 8 likes
    • This comment has been edited.
  20. kedavis Member

    Well what you’re all missing is that Jonah knows what’s best for ALL of us, cuz he be a intelekchul!

    • #20
    • June 5, 2020, at 11:45 PM PDT
    • 8 likes
  21. Flicker Coolidge

    Jon1979 (View Comment):
    I suppose Trump’s ‘bad pants’ comment also irked Jonah

    Trump may be the same ill-mannered person in 2020 he was in 1977

    So this is what it comes down to? A rough remark and a history of ill manners. This kind of stuff? This is why he insults the president and maligns his administration? And why he engaged in that unseemly rant against McEnaney? And why he views Flynn’s behavior as suspicious and bears looking into? No, I think there’s something more that Goldberg finds unacceptable, and gives him an irrational near-hatred of all things Trump.

    He certainly has an emotional inability to accept Trump as even a reasonably good president. If he hadn’t been on Kleven, Klevan, Klaven I wouldn’t have bothered listening.

    • #21
    • June 6, 2020, at 1:29 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
    • This comment has been edited.
  22. kedavis Member

    Flicker (View Comment):

    Jon1979 (View Comment):
    I suppose Trump’s ‘bad pants’ comment also irked Jonah

    Trump may be the same ill-mannered person in 2020 he was in 1977

    So this is what it comes down to? A rough remark and a history of ill manners. This kind of stuff? This is why he insults the president and maligns his administration? And why he engaged in that unseemly rant against McEnaney? And why he views Flynn’s behavior as suspicious and bears looking into? No, I think there’s something more that Goldberg finds unacceptable, and gives him an irrational near-hatred of all things Trump.

    He certainly has an emotional inability to accept Trump as even a reasonably good president. If he hadn’t been on Kleven, Klevan, Klaven I wouldn’t have bothered listening.

    Well, I’ve got that problem licked.

    I didn’t listen to him on Klavan, either.

    • #22
    • June 6, 2020, at 1:39 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  23. Stad Thatcher

    If Trump didn’t hold daily briefings, he’d be accused of lack of leadership, or downplaying the seriousness of the virus. No, the MSM and never-Trumpers put the President in a no-win situation. This means he can do the right thing, because anything he does (or doesn’t do) is going to be criticized . . .

    • #23
    • June 6, 2020, at 6:21 AM PDT
    • 5 likes
  24. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Well what you’re all missing is that Jonah knows what’s best for ALL of us, cuz he be a intelekchul!

    That really stands out, doesn’t it? The lack of intellectual humility. He knows better than conservative law professors across the country that the Flynn matter is a “red herring,” and not part of a dangerous assault on the Constitution and self-rule. 

    He also knows the hearts of soooo many people, including the President, people who work for him, and his supporters. And all our motives are malign, based in ignorance, or self-serving. Donald Trump can’t possibly do what he does out of love for the country, but because “he wants to be a pundit.” Which, in Jonah’s universe is the highest of all beings to which anyone can aspire, apparently. 

    /snort! try not to laugh at that one!! 

     

    • #24
    • June 6, 2020, at 7:00 AM PDT
    • 10 likes
  25. Jon1979 Lincoln

    Flicker (View Comment):

    Jon1979 (View Comment):
    I suppose Trump’s ‘bad pants’ comment also irked Jonah

    Trump may be the same ill-mannered person in 2020 he was in 1977

    So this is what it comes down to? A rough remark and a history of ill manners. This kind of stuff? This is why he insults the president and maligns his administration? And why he engaged in that unseemly rant against McEnaney? And why he views Flynn’s behavior as suspicious and bears looking into? No, I think there’s something more that Goldberg finds unacceptable, and gives him an irrational near-hatred of all things Trump.

    He certainly has an emotional inability to accept Trump as even a reasonably good president. If he hadn’t been on Kleven, Klevan, Klaven I wouldn’t have bothered listening.

    That’s the ‘decorum conservatives’ where the saying “It’s not whether you win or lose. It’s how you play the game,” gets taken to absurd extremes. Jonah’s position is mild compared to someone like George Will, who I’ve noted, was fuming 34 years ago over the boorish behavior of that uncourth vulgarian, George H.W. Bush. For Will, manners on his side is more important than anything … but at the same time, he doesn’t care what the Democrats’ manners are or how they play the game, which is why Will posted that column a week ago repeating his call from 2018 that voters give the Democrats control of Congress, along with giving Joe Biden the White House.

    That’s also where Bill Kristol and The Bulwark crowd are. Comity trumps policy, and all the conservative positions they claimed to have held in the past are unimportant as long as Trump is president. Jonah’s not to the level of riding that crazy train yet, but I do think he was hoping the Mueller probe would get Trump indicted and removed from office, is irked that it didn’t, and still hasn’t explained what he thinks four years of President Biden (or President Biden’s VP) will do to America.

    • #25
    • June 6, 2020, at 7:56 AM PDT
    • 5 likes
  26. Barfly Member

    There are three strategies by which a person may make his way: produce something of value and barter it, persuade someone to support you, or step outside the frame and manipulate the system. Society is powered by the first sort, the second sort are a luxury good, and the third sort are a necessary evil we ought to keep our eye on. 

    Persuasion-oriented individuals instinctively understand the difference. They would have been shaken by the election of any productive individual, but it’s much worse for them that DJT ignores their camouflage narratives. That’s even more true for the class of operators, who’ve grown way beyond their necessary numbers.

    Persuasives know they do not produce. That is the source of “white guilt.”

    Then there’s the fact of their horrible loss. After eight years of the Shadecaster, the persuasive class really thought they had it made. Then the bottom fell out.

    Jonah Goldberg is a persuader, not a producer. Of course he’s angry and afraid. He feels that something rightfully his was taken from him.

    • #26
    • June 6, 2020, at 9:20 AM PDT
    • 8 likes
  27. Flicker Coolidge

    Jon1979 (View Comment):
    That’s the ‘decorum conservatives’ where the saying “It’s not whether you win or lose. It’s how you play the game,” gets taken to absurd extremes.

    Barfly (View Comment):
    Of course he’s angry and afraid. He feels that something rightfully his was taken from him.

    So you two combined think he’s a fop and a kibbitzer who’s been displaced. Hmm. Reminds me of a stereotypical minor British royal whose ultimate disdain is for those of the uppity well-to-do merchant class who’s stepped out of place and gotten too big for his britches.

    • #27
    • June 6, 2020, at 10:13 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
  28. Barfly Member

    Flicker (View Comment):

    Jon1979 (View Comment):
    That’s the ‘decorum conservatives’ where the saying “It’s not whether you win or lose. It’s how you play the game,” gets taken to absurd extremes.

    Barfly (View Comment):
    Of course he’s angry and afraid. He feels that something rightfully his was taken from him.

    So you two combined think he’s a fop and a kibbitzer who’s been displaced. Hmm. Reminds me of a stereotypical minor British royal whose ultimate disdain is for those of the uppity well-to-do merchant class who’s stepped out of place and gotten too big for his britches.

    A fop and a kibbitzer, well said. Why, just typing the phrase conjures the man’s image. Patrician features, loosely cropped blond hair, the signature bow tie … wait a minute.

    • #28
    • June 6, 2020, at 1:22 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  29. Gazpacho Grande' Coolidge

    I stopped listening to The Remnant because as good as Jonah is on some subjects, Trump is something he can’t seem to step away from, and he regularly insults broad swaths of people – many of whom have had real jobs, not jobs typing weird links into a weekly email – on facile assumptions that “pro-Trump” means “not conservative” and “not as smart as I am, after I finally decided to read some books I skipped as an undergrad”.

    A lot of this is too bad. But I grow pretty tired of reading someone, or hearing from someone, who regularly insults me, displays an almost sneering level of disdain, and castigates those who disagree with him by essentially claiming a lower level of conservative enlightenment than he proudly sports.

    It’s pretty tired at this point. I’m not sure where he goes with it. I still enjoy the GLoP podcart, even when some of that Trump mania creeps in, but it’s a weird feeling to listen to people you usually enjoy and can hear the condescension in their voices.

    And I didn’t vote for Trump.

    • #29
    • June 6, 2020, at 1:54 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  30. Jim George Member

    Western Chauvinist: “Fawning about Trump.” [said about McEnany]

    I listened to this entire interview and as it neared the end, at a point I was about to have to pull over to the side of the road and be sick it was so nauseating, I found myself wondering how in the world Andrew Klavan could be so even tempered in the face of some of these truly outlandish statements; in the next podcast, he talked about some messages he had received from some listeners raising the same concern and wondering why he wasn’t “harder” on Goldberg and his answers just made me admire Klavan more than I did before, if that is possible. 

    You did a great job on this post carefully detailing all the sickening passages, but, with all due respect, you left out one of the more outrageous things he said, although maybe not in this specific interview. In making the following observation, I will stipulate upfront, to save anyone from having to bring it up later: I am a certified, official, long-time, died-in-the-wool, dirty Old Man, so I will just haul off and say that anyone who calls Kayleigh McAnany “grotesque” has a disorder of some magnitude, the only question being just how severe it is. 

    There, I said it, and will now wait for the arrival of the large black helicopters bearing loads of PC Police to spirit me away to the nearest reeducation camp. 

    Sincerely, Jim

    • #30
    • June 6, 2020, at 4:09 PM PDT
    • 6 likes