I never thought I’d see such a bonding between the two polar opposites of the political spectrum, but Donald Trump has pulled it off. Back in the Bush days not long after 9/11 we saw something called “Bush derangement syndrome,” which was the irrational hatred liberals had for George W. Bush. He literally drove them nuts. Now we have Donald Trump and what appears to me to be Trump derangement syndrome, but he’s an equal opportunity offender. And surprisingly, or not, liberals and conservatives despise him for pretty much the same reasons.
The examples are legion, but after Super Tuesday and his seven wins, the vitriol seems more pointed, and desperate than ever. Jonah Goldberg, who if he is not part of the Republican establishment at least lives near there, calls Trump “an intellectually and ideologically unqualified, and often unhinged, demagogue.” The Washington Examiner, conservative rag, pulls no punches:
Donald Trump is not just another Republican candidate. His clear pandering to racist voters, his over-the-top sexism, his unapologetic vulgarity, and, perhaps more than anything else, his cynical lack of principle and substance now threaten to become defining features of the Republican Party.
Gosh, you’d almost think Satan himself was running for president. Some are so panicked, that they’ve even called for a nuclear option. At Anti-Trump Headquarters, National Review, they’re calling for “an Anti-Trump Manhattan Project.” I’ve seen statements about Trump by his detractors that can only come from a syndrome that can only be called deranged. They’ve decided based on his public performances, that the man has no private character, at all. As much as I might agree with these people on many things, thus far I’m not buying it. I could be wrong, of course, but when I came across this piece by Conrad Black, who has a different take on Trump, it didn’t surprise me:
Donald Trump horrifies Canadians as a caricature of an Ugly American of the 1950s vintage: loud, boastful, boorish, ignorant, obscenely materialistic, and illiberal in every respect, as nauseating a personality as he is reassuring to us of our comparative civility, culture, and equability, our inoffensiveness and niceness, if not exactly our style. There is some reason for this judgment of Trump from what we have generally seen of him in public now for 30 years. In private, he is charming, solicitous, engaging, and companionable, never pompous, devoid of prejudice, abstemious, and a traditional and conscientious family man. He is a generous civic leader in New York, a quality builder, and a generous employer and philanthropist and friend. His company and ours had a joint venture in Chicago and he delivered on every clause, managed the redevelopment of our property there with great skill and it was a very satisfactory experience all round.
So which is it, Jekyll or Hyde? The reason his detractors have increasingly turned me off is that they think they know everything about the man and ALL of it is unmitigated evil. And they absolutely know EVERY thing he would do, and it would ALL be a disaster. Such absolutely certainty will only convince the converted. Rush Limbaugh, whom I trust, says Trump is much more the private man Conrad Black knows, than the public caricature he obviously wants to convey. He also has great kids who run his businesses, which tells me a very lot. If he gets the nomination and conservatives, as many are warning, sit out the race and Hillary gets elected, they will only have themselves to blame for how much deeper the liberal/progressive rot enervates the United States of America.