Since Tuesday night, many lefty pundits have been mostly (though not completely) distracted from President Trump by Roy Moore’s win in Alabama’s Republican U.S. Senate primary. Their message: Just when you thought the GOP had hit bottom, the bottom dropped out. Two especially noteworthy commentaries came from Esquire’s Charles Pierce and New York’s Jonathan Chait.
Starring in movies about politics allegedly gives celebrities a political background. At least, that’s what Robert Redford thought in his latest interview.
Was Ronald Reagan the original Washington wizard? Esquire’s Charles Pierce seems to think so. Pierce argued on Wednesday that in the 1980s, an ideological “spell…was cast” by the Gipper and his allies, and that as a result of various right-wing policies enacted since then, Harvey-related damage to the Houston area will be a lot worse than it should have been. “The spell…was cast 30 years ago, when conservative movement politics pitched deregulation as a panacea,” wrote Pierce. “It was cast 30 years ago when conservative movement politics declared that important decisions on things like the environment and public health were better left to the states, despite the fact that many states, like Texas, were unable or unwilling to pay to do these jobs properly.”
On Saturday afternoon, an act of racist terrorism was committed in Charlottesville, Virginia. Among those responsible, according to Esquire’s Charles Pierce, were Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush. “Every Republican who ever played footsie with the militias out west owns this bloodshed,” disgorged Pierce in a Sunday post. “Every Republican president -- actually, there's only one -- who began a campaign in Philadelphia, Mississippi, to talk about states rights...owns this bloodshed…Every Republican politician who followed the late Lee Atwater into the woods in search of poisoned treasure owns this bloodshed…Every conservative journalist who saw this happening and who encouraged it, or ignored it, or pretended that it wasn't happening, owns this bloodshed.”
Be careful how you get your hair cut. If it is a little too high and tight it could cause the obsessed members of the mainstream media to call you a "fascist" or "white nationalist." Such was the case with Eric Trump who recently got his sidewalls cut a little too tight to pass political scrutiny by Esquire magazine. When you look at his haircut you will wonder what all the fuss is about. It is not that high nor even that tight. In fact, it is a haircut style favored by millions of men yet Esquire (and other liberal outlets) detect nascent fascism as you can see in a laughable June 26 hit piece by Chistine Flammia titled, Eric Trump's New Haircut Is a Little Too 'White Nationalist' for Comfort:
To Esquire’s Pierce, the Clintons’ image as scandal-plagued is in large part attributable to the Times, which since the early ’90s has reported extensively on stories that “were, by and large, complete bullshit, inflated by Republicans and a willing and timid elite political press into a Questions Remain culture of faux-scandal that persisted through the entirety of the 2016 campaign. And it began long before the Times ran seven stories about [James] Comey's release of his 11th hour letter to Congress on its front page.”
Esquire’s Charles Pierce is accusing President Trump of adding to something he vowed to subtract from. In a Thursday post, Pierce called the White House’s proposed federal budget a “vast, noxious swamp into which all those tributaries of modern conservative thought have emptied themselves. People die in there, swallowed up in deep sinkholes of empowered bigotry and class anger.”
John McCain’s 2008 campaign slogan, “Country First,” does not describe the worldview of Republicans, suggested Pierce on Monday. For them, the Esquire blogger implied, it’s more like “GOP über alles.” The peg for the post was chit-chat in the political and media worlds about whether President Trump is of sound mind, or, as Pierce put it, about “the possibility that the presidential trolley has left whatever tracks it had in the first place.”
Esquire’s Pierce readily concedes that Ben Carson (“an elite neurosurgeon”) and Mike Pompeo (“graduated at the top of his class at West Point”) are smart guys. In a way, though, they’re also tragic figures, he suggests, since they’ve “had to tailor their politics and their public personae to cater to the anti-rational, theocratic, anti-intellectual Id of modern conservatism…This means that both Carson and Pompeo have long histories of saying and writing things that sound like transmissions coming through their molars from Planet X.”
The Hamilton electors, whatever their number, are being cheered on by Hamilton bloggers, one of whom is Esquire’s Pierce. In a Saturday post, Pierce argued that in the country the Founding Fathers envisioned, the Electoral College would vote down a Donald Trump presidency. Pierce wrote, “Let us assume for a moment that our constitutional institutions are as strong and functional as they are supposed to be, and let's assume for a moment that we, as a self-governing people, are as strong and as functional as we need to be. What would happen next is that the Electoral College would function as it was designed to function and as its function was explained by Alexander Hamilton in Federalist 68…The electors would look at the accumulated evidence and deny the president-elect his mandate.”
If you asked a hundred conservatives to name the de facto flagship publication of American liberalism, The New York Times probably would get more mentions than any other. Still, it hasn’t been hard to find lefties upset with the paper about matters such as its supposed longstanding hostility toward Bill and Hillary Clinton. How the Times, especially its coverage of the e-mail story, may have made Hillary’s defeat more likely has been a post-election buzz topic on the left. Liberal strategist Jamison Foser, whose affiliations have included the Democratic National Committee and, currently, the Tom Steyer-led NextGen Climate, crystallized the lefty disgruntlement with the Times in a tweetstorm in response to a fellow liberal who argued that “we have to support the NYTimes right now more than ever.”
In a Tuesday post, Esquire blogger Pierce complained that Ronald Reagan’s anti-government rhetoric discouraged many from voting, thereby benefiting Republicans, but Donald Trump’s anti-government rhetoric encouraged many to vote, thereby benefiting Republicans. Pierce noted that Reagan, in his first inaugural address, declared “that government was not a solution to the problem, that government was the problem.” The government-bashing, Pierce charged, was meant “not just to convert voters to conservative policies that were otherwise unpopular, it also was [meant] to frustrate people into apathy and non-participation.”