[EDIT: Updated to conclude more material, re: “shithole]
Okay, a year after I expressed my hopes that Trump would be president of the United States. Time for a review: was I wrong? Would Hillary have been a better president?
What I got wrong about Trump
The main thing I got wrong is that I thought Trump had more self-awareness than he had. Following the Scott Adams analysis, I thought that Trump knew what he was doing and knew how to marry over-the-top rhetoric with more practical points of action. Following Scott Alexander’s brilliant essays on the guy, I thought Trump would be smart enough to employ first rate people and let them get on with things while he was content to reap the adulation and piss off the left.
Well, I was wrong. Trump has revealed himself to be pretty much exactly what he appears to be – a vain and petty man who has severe trouble keeping his mind on anything for more than seconds at a time. His response to Charlottesville was nothing short of disgraceful, and far from surrounding himself with talent, he seems to be surrounding himself with craven yes-men whose only real talent is in ass kissing. He’s also singularly failed to deliver on too many things, the ban on islamic immigration being foremost in my mind. Then there is his appalling grandstanding on the matter of North Korea.
Scott Adams has been saying that this has brought the North Koreans to the negotiation table for the first time.
If they also said, "You bring the donuts," the economic sanctions are working. https://t.co/1jXidTXTkj
— Scott Adams (@ScottAdamsSays) January 5, 2018
He fails to understand what is going on in Korea. B.R. Myers has lived in Korea for fifteen years, and he’s perhaps the best authority on the division. The division isn’t between communists and capitalists, but between moderate ethno-nationalists and howling fanatical enthno-nationalists. South Koreans may not want the Kim tyranny, but they do not want their racial brothers and sisters threatened. These talks play into Pyongyang’s hands, not Washington’s.
For me very much the last straw was his “shithole” comment. I don’t see how even Scott Adams can spin that as ‘master persuasion’. A great deal of empty noise is going about whether this is or is not “racist” – who cares? What is beyond debate is that it is crude, vulgar, vicious and beneath contempt.
I will note this: actual Africans are handling this like adults and not like the hysterical children of the US commentariat. For example:
Good for him. I respect him very much for taking this line. However, it’s not the point. If you’ve been from somewhere and know it, you have a right to dislike it. The point is that no fat bastard who has never been there should talk like that.
Trump has revealed himself to be an appetite in a suit.
What I got wrong about the reaction to him
Last year, I wrote:
At least with Trump there is a chance that the media will do their damn jobs for once
What was I thinking? The media? Do its job? Ha. Ha. Good joke.
Let’s see, we’ve had the media report on the scandal that Trump gets two scoops of ice cream, while everyone else gets one. The Boston Globe complains that last year’s eclipse disproportionately favored Trump voters. Not to be outdone, the Atlantic explained how the very solar system is structurally racist. Meanwhile CNN has been on a roll, claiming that during his visit to Japan, Trump “impatiently” dumped fish food into the Koi pond, while he was only following the Japanese PMs example, and so on, and so on. Here’s a good compendium of 16 fake news stories put forth by the mainstream media.
For all that, Trump’s victory was the only moral option
I didn’t mistype that, and I mean it: Trump defeating Hillary was the only moral option in the 2016 election.
The trouble is that, as bad as Trump is, and he is very bad, the people arraigned against him are the scum of the earth.
Just to repeat the reasons a Clinton Two presidency was morally unacceptable: the green-lighting of the Rwandan genocide. The destruction of Al Shifa. The openly racist racketeering and politicking. The naked corruption affecting even such matters as the world’s main nuclear flashpoint.
People keep trying to dissociate Hillary from Bill, but that will not fly because, firstly, she was an enthusiastic participant in this (and, what people are not entitled to forget, tried to prevent anything being done about the Bosnian genocide while it was in progress), and secondly, because she has her own list of corruption and horror. The airbrushing has been considerable, but before the ascension of Clinton Two to America’s foreign policy, Iraq was a wobbly democracy and Libya had surrendered its WMDs. Following eight years of Clintonian foreign politics, Libya was devastated, and the Islamic State had risen and the main international legacy of America’s first black president was the return of the slave market.
Just to hammer it home that a Clinton Two presidency would have been along these lines, Hillary Clinton openly embraced Henry Kissinger, one of the worst people in the world. Please read the record of Kissinger’s covert actions to prolong the Vietnam war, his sponsorship of General Yahya Khan’s genocide in Bangladesh, his sponsorship of the coup that installed the Shah of Iran (leading to the eventual Islamic revolution for which we are still paying, and on and on it goes “until you can’t eat enough to vomit enough” as Christopher Hitchens said.
So what would have happened in the event of a Clinton Two presidency would have been at least two more nations raped and devastated and two more six figure genocides. Not even a Trump presidency could make that acceptable.
That was simply not morally acceptable. If it took Orange Godzilla to stop that from happening, then so be it.
Let me stress that I wouldn’t have argued this way about Sanders. I certainly wouldn’t have argued this way about Obama. But the Clintons… There was one final thing that convinced me that that dynasty needed to be stopped dead. I would be talking with Clinton supporters and I would explain all of the forgoing points. What I would get in return was a condescending smile that a statement, that, well, we all need to be adults, and this is the choice we have, and if a few hundred thousand – or a few million – dark skinned foreigners needed to be massacred so that Hillary could have the office she so richly deserved, well, that was a price my interlocutor was happy to have someone else pay.
Then they’d go back to typing #blacklivesmatter .
(Update: Mark Steyn, as usual, skewers this. This is the real evil of political correctness is that it substitutes sounding good for doing good – that as long as you don’t use bad words, you can do bad things).
The revulsion I feel towards this attitude is hard to put into words. I simply couldn’t bear to see that smirk succeed. I still can’t.
So what do you think of his time in office so far?
As I say, Trump has turned into something of a fiasco. However, there are two things that deserve to stand in his credit forever.
- The defeat of the Islamic State. Within under a year, Islam’s caliphate has been crushed and cast down. That deserves to fully be placed to Trump’s credit, something I might add, that those who genuinely faced that horror are willing to do. (Meanwhile, the idiot pretty boy and lefty heart-throb Justin Trudeau is apparently fine with welcoming practitioners of slavery into Canada, with no penalty)
- The exposure of the deep state. When I started seeing this term go around, I couldn’t believe it. Yet it was true: people were finally talking openly about the CIA’s role in the subversion of democracy and liberty. Somewhere Nelson Mandela is laughing his head off, joined by Patrice Lumumba, and all the victims of Saddam Hussain and Zia ul-Haq and who knows how many others.
When I say that Trump’s opposition contains some of the worst people in the world, I am dead serious.