A Post I Did in Another Forum…


I become daily more and more bemused by the tendency of people to do the following:

Item 1) Observe that SOMETHING IMPORTANT has happened!
Item 2) Eagerly rush to contribute to the general conversational fracas as it pertains to that SOMETHING IMPORTANT (I’ve been guilty!)
Item 3) Stake out a strong position on the SOMETHING IMPORTANT, nearly always based on preconceived notions and biases… and contemporaneous media “reports.” (I’ve been guilty, but far less so in recent years. Of course! So MANY “news” reports have been shown to be pure fabrications in the past few years!)
Item 4) Vigorously defend the initially-stated position
Item 5) Watch in dismay as the position crumbles in light of new facts, and more rational, thoughtful analysis by more rational, thoughtful — and honest! — analysts.
Item 6) Double down on everything anyway, and become even more dismissive of opposing views, regardless of how well-reasoned.
Item 7) Ramp UP the hyperbole and belligerence being used in support of the now disproven belief.
Item 8 ) And all because of a STRONG desire that the INITIAL belief, so passionately believed, so vociferously defended, and now so decisively debunked… be true.
Or, let’s face it, “I’m right because I want to be right, because it’s RIGHT that I be right, because it COULD be true, and because I don’t want to lose face admitting that I was… wrong.
That’s largely a good summary of the progression of my own thoughts and beliefs about Donald Trump starting from the escalator announcement in 2015, and culminating in a vote for Trump in 2016 and 2020. AND incorporating the crucial Item #9:
Item 9) Accepting, finally, that I was wrong about the initial belief.
The above EIGHT steps are also a description of nearly the entire bill of particulars that the NeverTrumpers have been directing at Trump. Without ever allowing themselves to arrive at the final, crucial, evolutionary destination: Item #9.
The sad truth is: REAL criticisms of Trump were perfectly legitimate, numerous, and readily available! Without resort to the tsunami of lies that the Left unleashed against him for years! And the LIST of those lies is massive. The great Sharyl Atkisson catalogued them extensively on her website. But you know the famous ones: “Russian collusion,” “very fine people,” “dead soldiers,” “bleach and ultraviolet light,” “the dossier,” “the ‘pee tape'” and so on and so on and so on.
This is also a description of what people believe about everything that the target of the now irrational beliefs does.
Hence, the stubbornness of the belief that Jan. 6 was anything more than a one-off, ultimately harmless (except to Ashli Babbitt), occasionally rowdy and inappropriate, demonstration by people frustrated at the obvious fact that massive election interference and fraud had taken place in 2020, while an obviously false narrative was rapidly being constructed: “It was the freest, fairest election of all!
Side Note: Find a description of what the people who DID break into the Capitol Building did once inside. They ambled about aimlessly, amiably chatting with security people. There were reports that someone stole a laptop, and that another stood at a lectern for a bit. Someone carried some twist ties around too! Well! All that‘ll certainly bring ANY republic’s current government crashing down, won’t it?!?
Trump was NOT a REAL Conservative. Trump’s policies were NOT Conservative policies. All of them WERE valid targets for REAL, SUBSTANTIVE criticism. Trump DID pull the GOP to the Left. Only temporarily, fortunately, but incorrectly all the same. Trump spent his entire public life as a New York moderate leftist, and so should have been ineligible for the nomination as the GOP candidate for the Presidency.
At the same time, it’s entirely possible that Trump was the only one who could have defeated Hillary Clinton, since the rest of the candidates had bought into the Play Nice With The Democrats state of mind. So, while it’s possible that Trump should never have been the 2016 nominee, it’s equally possible that Trump absolutely HAD to be the GOP nominee in 2016.
It’s NOT easy balancing the FACT that those two massively contrasting (but not opposite, or mutually exclusive) concepts could have been true, and were perfectly valid, entirely plausible perceptions, about Trump at the very same time.
The problem was simple, though: As soon as the Billy Bush recording (grab ’em by the p***y) became public, all valid, SUBSTANTIVE criticism of Trump — at least in the media, as well as in vast swathes of the public — ceased, in favor of slander. And all led by the media. Shame on anyone (including me) who allowed himself to swallow the media narrative!
“He’s a Fascist!” (He’s plainly not) “He’s a racist!” (He’s simply not) “He’s a sexist!” (He’s plainly not) “He’s a Nazi!” (Nope. Clearly.) “He’s a tyrant!” (He’s plainly not) “He’s a liar!” (No more than any other President, and likely a lot less) “He’s a jerk!” (No more than any other President, and a lot less than many). “He’s a lunatic!” (Really? The LEAST war-mongering President in two generations?) And so on. All this when there were PLENTY of perfectly valid, POLICY-focused criticisms that could have been leveled at Trump. That SHOULD have been leveled at Trump.
He WAS a moderate. He WAS a policy squish. He WAS lacking in a coherent vision. He WAS, at best, very much a gamble. He WAS a huge risk, policy-wise. He was NOT remotely a qualified Conservative standard bearer.
(Parenthetical note: If the NeverTrumpers could have kept the criticisms to the substantive, everyone would have arrived at an absolutely inescapable conclusion: Trump’s policies, as flawed or inadequate as they were, were far, far, FAR better than anything that Hillary would have done; and were far, far, FAR better than anything BIDEN’s doing now. And Trump’s policies were ALSO… not all that great. Though the Abraham Accords SHOULD have won him the Nobel Peace Prize. And WOULD have won him that prize if he had been anyone else.)
Oddly enough, if you listen to the Billy Bush recording, it COULD have been a simple statement of fact! At least as it appeared to Trump. In that recording, Trump never said that HE “grabbed anyone,” only that it was that way in Hollywood. With all we know about Hollywood, and about the DECADES during which Harvey Weinstein got away with such grotesqueries, it sure SEEMS plausible.
The point is: if you were to remove all the criticisms of Trump that were based on lies and fabrications, on the irrelevant, and on emotion, you lose more than 99% of all criticism. And you’re left with REAL critiques, REAL objections, REAL disqualifiers for 2024. But, you WON’T have unjustly robbed a man of his humanity, as so many here want so desperately to do.
I know, I know… for not wanting to draw and quarter Trump, the NT’ers in this this audience will sneer that I’m one of THOSE… a vile “TRUMP SUPPORTER!” A lunatic! Even after I’ve said that I’ve disqualified him from 2024 in my mind, that I objected to his being the nominee in 2016, and that I steadily criticized him and his policies throughout his Presidency. Sometimes it’s hard for people to get past Item 8, above.
But Item 9 will set you free.

Here’s a reply from a friend in that forum:

I say this as someone who doesn’t particularly care about Trump’s humanity. But the way his enemies acted was worse. The fact of his enemies and where they revealed themselves to be 2016-2020 was worse. Their victory laps and consolidation of the anti-Trump jihad of 2016-2020 is worse.

Like you say, there’s plenty to disqualify him once you remove that stuff – but don’t remove it! The way Trump was treated and the depth and intensity to which it permeated all things was horrifying, and much more of a clear, present, anti-democratic, fascist, yadda yadda danger than anything else. There were fanatically anti-Trump people inserted just about everywhere, right up to Pence’s staff. It was so wrong on so many levels. Everyone went out of their minds and there’s not enough recognition of that: TDS really DID drive people nuts, and society really DID buckle and warp as a result of IT, not of Trump.

Trump’s been enough of a bonehead where even all the above doesn’t anger me the way it does when it happens to good people. The trolling Susan Collins received during Kavanaugh alone was enough to write off the left, forever, and she deserved it even less. (Betsy DeVos, so many others.) At least as a legit purveyor of resistance and criticism. The left went absolutely insane the last few years – all its insanity went into overdrive and continues to be there. That’s so much worse than Trump. Anyway: you said it. Thank you.

But, my friend said it better.

— xPraetorius

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