Sunday, July 21, 2019

Three Good Reads: The Mueller Circus; Trump Picks Pence

The first article is Michael Goodwin's Dems take desperate final shot at Trump with Mueller testimony. You won't be surprised by a thing Goodwin says, but he says it well--captures the desperation and futility of the whole circus.

The second article fascinated me in a totally different way. It's by Tim Alberta, who is the chief political correspondent at Politico, so if you're guessing that he's not a Trump fan, then you're on to something. And that's part of what makes the article so fascinating.

The article is You Crossed The Rubicon ... There's No Going Back": Karl Rove, Kellyanne Conway, And The Odd Couple Marriage Between Mike Pence And Donald Trump. It's a chapter from the just released American Carnage: On the Front Lines of the Republican Civil War and the Rise of President Trump. Of course Alberta has his own slant, his own agenda, and of course there are repeated efforts at snark, attempts to depict Trump as the buffoonish caricature we're all familiar with. But what keeps coming through the portrait of Trump the person, and especially the positive qualities that suit him as President. His relentless inquisitiveness, his willingness to accept being challenged, his impatience with the BS factor. And his basic humanity and likeability.

Here's the blurb about the overall theme of the book, from which you can readily grasp the author's slant:

Only by viewing Trump as the culmination of a decade-long civil war inside the GOP—and of the parallel sense of cultural, socioeconomic, and technological disruption during that period—can we appreciate how he won the White House and consider the fundamental questions at the center of America’s current turmoil. How did a party once obsessed with national insolvency come to champion trillion-dollar deficits? How did the party of compassionate conservatism become the party of Muslim bans and family separation? How did the party of family values elect a thrice-married philanderer? And, most important, how long can such a party survive?

This chapter doesn't get into much of that, but here's one sample from Kellyanne Conway:

“The Republican Party was always looking for the next Ronald Reagan, but it kept picking Bushes,” Conway says.

It's longish but very interesting. Highly recommended.

Heh, the third is an addon:

Pelosi Can’t Disown Her Political Progeny

The squad was weaned on Pelosi’s mother’s milk of identity politics, bad faith, and fear-mongering. Now, her political offspring make up the face of a party defined by race and gender with a hearty strain of anti-Americanism, animated by name-calling and threats. Diversity, not merit, rules the day. Capitalism is evil, socialism is just. Global warming, not terrorism, is the existential threat to humanity. We are citizens of the world, not to one nation. 
Bullying is a substitute for persuasion. Critics are silenced by smears, not by facts. Imaginary systemic injustices excuse any bad behavior; indignation supersedes hard work. Seniority is a nice word for white patriarchy. Respect flows only one way. 
The squad’s political hubris was a generation in the making, during which time Pelosi was a Democratic Party leader. Aside from her relatively tepid criticism of late, Pelosi, like a bad parent, has mostly accommodated the squad’s tantrums and antics since Election Day. As I wrote in January, it was obvious that Ocasio-Cortez would be the shadow speaker as Pelosi sucked up to her unruly freshman caucus early on.


  1. I sense, and hope, that Americans are about fed up with identity politics. It's getting ridiculous, the number of permutations down to the micro level that one can make about himself. A participant at the local Pride parade was quoted in the paper about being the first black female to lead the parade. Her description was along the lines of "I'm the first black, young, female lesbian..." She could've added, if applicable, Muslim, disabled, dyslexic, immigrant, public school educated, descendant of a slave, etc.

    It's really getting silly.

    I hope that I'm right about my countrymen.