Monday, April 20, 2020

on Trump and politics (email excerpt)

On March 29, I sent an email to a friend, part of which is reprinted (in slightly edited form) below. Read, enjoy (or despise), and feel free to comment.

re: Trump

I don't know whether you read my "mea culpa" blog post from 2016, after Trump got elected. That post talked a lot about my intellectual blindness, which was largely aided by a mainstream media that had been determined to give us a pre-prepped narrative instead of simply reporting the facts. I know this makes me sound like some sort of rightie lunatic, but after the way the media kept chanting "Hillary in a landslide!" until a day before the election, I simply can't trust the regular media anymore. They lied and lied right up until they couldn't, and then they manufactured a bunch of nonsense about Russia and Ukraine. Several official investigations later—by Democrats, no less—and no substantive evidence was found... but you'd never know that if all you listened to was the mainstream media, which swore up and down that Trump—was—guilty! Sigh...

So these days, I ignore pretty much all the "alphabet soup" outlets (e.g., ABC, NBC, CBS, MSNBC, CNN, CNBC, etc.) in favor of the so-called "alt media." This alt media has nothing to do with the "alt-right," which may very well contain—as liberals claim—a high percentage of Nazis and bigots. The alt media is composed of people from various political leanings who are all committed to relaying facts and engaging in evidence-based speculation and commentary—a far cry from the trash that CNN is relentlessly peddling.

One of my favorite alt-media commentators is Tim Pool, who is unabashedly liberal. He regularly voices his dislike of Trump, but he's absolutely disgusted with what the left has become in recent years. Pool is constantly critical of the shoddy journalism happening around him, and that's one of the reasons why I bother listening to him (his YouTube channel is here if you're interested). Pool is regularly accused, by the left, of being a rightie wolf in leftie sheep's clothing because he is so consistently critical of the left, but the way I see it, he's constantly critical because elements on the left constantly act in a way that merits criticism. Were they to stop being so duplicitous, Pool would be left with nothing to complain about.

As a middle-of-the-roader myself, I appreciate the Tim Pools of the world who try to strike a balance in how they view news and politics. Unfortunately, the left has pulled so far left that we middle-of-the-roaders aren't seen as moderate: we're seen as nasty, bigoted alt-righters. I may have already lost a couple leftie friends because their extremism causes them to see me as extreme. (Losing friends over politics has to be one of the dumbest things ever. Politics should never be a substitute for religion.)

Anyway, Pool's take on Trump—and I happen to agree—is that the left has spent more time and energy trying vainly to take Trump down than trying to find solutions to major problems, e.g., gun violence, border control, Syria and Afghanistan, and now the virus. So the way Pool sees it, Trump is going to skate to reelection, probably with a much larger electoral-vote margin than in 2016. While some people on the right are confidently predicting a victory on the order of Reagan/Mondale, I don't think it'll be quite that huge of a margin. Still, it seems pretty likely that, because the left can't help itself when it comes to un-constructive Trump-bashing, it's going to lose big in November, and the GOP will also win back the seats it lost in the House of Representatives, which means Trump won't have any more obstacles to receiving funds for his pet projects.

It's good to remember, though, that as fractured and chaotic as the left is these days, the right was in the same situation under Obama for eight years. It seems to be the fate of the loser party to spend a lot of time in internal conflict, then to get its act together and refocus after the eight-year period of darkness is over. So my prediction is that, after Trump wins a second term, the next president will almost definitely be a Democrat, and we'll have eight years of that. And the right/GOP will be back to being chaotic again. Back out in the wilderness.

Sorry for the rant. I don't actually like Trump as a person (he's a vain asshole, as far as I'm concerned, and if it turns out he did assault any of the 24 women currently lined up to accuse him, I won't shed a tear if he's punished), but I'm also objective enough to realize that he's not Satan or Hitler, the way so many on the left insanely claim. If Trump truly were Hitler, people would be terrified to say that out loud because they'd be worried about being tossed into a black van and carted off to a concentration camp in the desert. If Trump truly were such a dictator, then the journalists who openly accuse him—to his face—of racism would be tossed in the deepest, remotest prisons. Instead, the press is free to continue to loudly and proudly misinform the public. That's not what one finds in a dictatorship.

Upshot: I take it for granted that Trump will win reelection. Joe Biden seems to have creeping dementia, not to mention a reputation as someone who gets too "handsy" with women and young girls (see parody website here). Even most Democrats are terrified of Bernie Sanders's overt socialism, and Sanders is way behind Biden in the current delegate count, anyway. I hear rumors that Andrew Cuomo might be "drafted" into the presidential race, but it's not going to look good for a governor—who's currently handling a major epidemic—to leave his duties in order to campaign. Whatever admiration Cuomo has now will go down the toilet if he throws his hat into the ring.

Fookin' politics. My take is that I can fundamentally disagree with someone politically and still be friends with that person. I don't view my liberal friends as enemies just because I think they might be wrong or misguided. They're free to view me as wrong or misguided as well! That's the beauty of having an opinion and thinking freely, in the spirit of tolerance.

Over at Instapundit, a libertarian blog, it's been observed several times that most normal Americans are not like what you see on Twitter: people of different political stripes actually get along just fine, thank you very much. The country isn't really as polarized as all that, and when disaster strikes, fellow Americans will do what they can to help each other, not leave each other hanging because one is (D) and the other is (R). Or so I want to believe, anyway.

I think we'll all get through the pandemic, and we'll all get through the election. Feelings will be hurt; long resentments will simmer. But in the end, we'll hang together as a country because ultimately, we all want to make this project work.


John Mac said...

Well said. I'm not believing that creepy Joe is really the candidate the Dems will run with. My cynical side thinks he's merely the tool used to derail Bernie and later Joe will reluctantly withdraw due to his mental incapacity (or maybe some other health issue). Will the Dems go with someone like Cuomo? Maybe, but given that they can basically pick whomever they want at that point I expect they'll go with a more PC choice--a woman, or better yet, a woman of color.

I think Trump's chances for reelection are strong, but a lot is riding on how this pandemic plays outs and how well the economy recovers prior to November. It should be interesting to watch from afar.

John from Daejeon said...

John Mac, Trump doesn't stand a chance if the woman of color is married to the previous president.