Yesterday The Omnivore exchanged words with a friend who voted for Trump. The nominal discussion was about McMaster--the guy was okay with the decorated general and didn't think he should be fired--but he was also very happy with Trump. He allowed that at some point he might stop defending him--but it would have to be much worse than it is now.
He pointed out that The Omnivore's agenda could be said to be "Working To Erase Every Trace of Dumb Deplorables Like [ him ]." The Omnivore, while certainly not owning that, does agree: He's got things to answer for.
Let's break this down. There are two worlds in play here--two co-existent realities. In one, Trump is a towering success with the small-dogs of the press, RINOS, and, erm, globalists or something nipping at his heels. Sure, he might be delayed--but he hasn't been proven a failure by any stretch.
Seriously?? Trump-Voters Got Things To Answer For??
In this world--World-T--the negative stories about Trump are either #fakenews (that is, wholly made up), or really severe spin augmented by a massive and unchecked bias in the liberal media. In this world some high percentage of the stories about Trump--of the stories in general are really basically false. They are simply a narrative being constructed for rubes.
The Omni-Friend does not live in World-T. A lot of Trump-voters do.
For those that do, The Omnivore's feelings are different.
This guy is a savvy enough, basically smart enough, person to know that Fox & Friends is biased entertainment. He's knows that a lot of what Trump wants to do (or says he wants to do, anyway) is stupid. He also knows that, for example, Trump's inauguration crowd was smaller than Obama's. He knows Hillary won the popular vote. He knows that polling that shows Trump to be incredibly unpopular might be off by some--but is not simply a constructed lie done by nefarious pollsters.
He lives a lot closer to World-R(eal).
What's Going On In World-R?In the real world, the Trump White House is rolling chaos. Tons of leaks, vast swaths of unfilled (and, now, perhaps unfillable--who would go to work for this operation?) positions, prioritization of loyalty or simply combativeness over expertise (Scaramucci), and a pretty good shot of toxic white supremacy (Miller, Gorka, Bannon, etc.).
Oh, and the admin--in large part thanks to Trump's own actions--is now under special counsel investigation for maybe having colluded with Russia.
This guy understands that this is all going on--but he's good with it. Does it stop here?
The Trump administration lies in ways no other administration has ever lied. Obama said "U CUD KEEP YER DOCTOR"--a lie? Yup. Obama told a bunch. Hillary told whoppers. But there are different categories of lie.
Hillary once claimed she came under sniper fire when she totally did not. This was a lie that made her sound braver than she ever actually had to be. It was self-aggrandizing. This is that kind of lie.
Trump tells these lies all the time. He has fake magazine covers with lies to make him look better hanging in his golf clubs. He lies about congratulatory calls from the boy-scouts. About praise from foreign leaders. About how many people came to his inauguration. When photographic evidence refuted him? He got involved personally trying to figure out who had tweeted the picture.
In World-T, lies are just what guys do sometimes--it's just bullshitting, yo. Let's all worry about his policy, right? But in World-R, where this particularly Omni-Friend resides (at least with one foot on that side) he knows that this behavior in the leader of the free world is troubling. He understands that the drive to do this could be linked to something darker than just over-a-beer yapping.
He knows that this behavior is disqualifying for someone with their finger on the nuclear button.
Is that it? Is that enough?
This guy isn't much of a conspiracy theorist. Sure, he thinks that the liberal media is more unified and more intent on "Taking Trump Down" than they probably are--but he doesn't think the Moon Landing was faked. He knows that there isn't a pedophile ring being run out of a pizza parlor in DC.
As such, he knows that if the NSA, the CIA, DHS, and the FBI all agree on something--that Russia targeted our electoral system in a sophisticated way that used cyber-operations to augment Trump's campaign--then it probably happened. Very probably.
The Omnivore will guess that when this guy closes his eyes at night, he knows that Russia used its considerable offensive capabilities to:
- Acquire and then release in the most damaging way possible the Podesta Emails.
- Direct its online bots and (probably) targeted advertising and fake news stories against persuadable Trump voters--possibly with the help of data from Trump's Cambridge Analytics group.
- Worked on both the right and the left to undermine faith in America's democratic process.
He also knows that Russia has paid no significant price for doing this--and, in fact, has a friend in the administration in Donald Trump.
Unlike a lot of people, this guy knows that Russia is capital-E evil--and he's enough of a patriot to know that they're not our friends at all. He knows they are seeking to undermine NATO (and succeeding, with Trump).
He's even smart enough to know that the allegations of Russia giving missile tech to North Korea are, in fact, the kind of thing they might be doing.
He knows all of this--but he's still 100% behind Trump. Even now.
Working To Erase Every Trace of Dumb Deplorables Like [ him ]
In his mind the liberals (or the left or whatever) want to "erase every trace of him." Does he think he's going to be rounded up, put in a camp, and exterminated by the PC-police? No--he's not an idiot. He thinks that he might get scolded for his white privilege (by people he'll never likely meet)--maybe on-line.
For him a worst case scenario would be refugees being moved in next door where their habits from the old country would involve things like unhygienic disposal of trash since they don't understand American Sanitation Engineering. He also thinks that refugees might be terrorists too--but as he's smart enough to understand that the vetting is extreme--he just likely holds that they're not what we'd think of as 1950's Americans in terms of values.
He's not wrong about that.
The Transgendered-person ban? The Omnivore suspects he supports it. He felt that gay-marriage was devaluing his straight-marriage--so it's an educated guess that he thinks that letting transgendered people serve devalues or degrades the service of straight people in some fashion. He thinks that people who oppose interracial marriage should be given a pass because they might just think that "two such different cultures coming together might lead to personal unhappiness in the marital union." Never mind the stacks of writing about racial purity that goes along with those beliefs.
So The Omnivore suspects he's down with the Trump-re-segregation (done on the anniversary date of the racial-desegregation of the US Armed Forces).
What else is Trump doing for this guy--that makes up for the above?
Well, he's pissing off liberals. Absolutely--but is that enough? Naw, says The Omnivore. It's not worth playing bumpercars with America just to upset some liberals. Surely not. So what else?
Well, this guy thinks that Global Warming is overstated and over-politicized. So Trump's erasure of Global [ whatever ] is probably good. Pulling out of the Paris Accord? Omni's going to guess he approves!
But he's also smart enough to know that the Paris Accord was non-binding and that instead of pulling out, Trump could just have released new targets or something.
But that wouldn't have made liberals mad--so we're back to the culture war.
How 'bout that wall? This guy is bright enough to know that (a) a full wall costing 20-60 billion dollars will likely never be built--and that if it was (b) it would not have much of an impact on illegal immigration anyway. He probably doesn't care much about The Wall--but, The Omnivore will guess that he likes the cultural signaling behind it.
Culture war. Again.
How about the Travel Ban--and the Legal Immigration Reduction? Well, Trump fumbled the first epiclly and then the liberal activist courts stepped in--but don't worry: Gorsuch'll come through. Does the Omni-Friend think he blames Trump for the mistakes?
No--The Omnivore is pretty sure this guy gives Team Trump a pass for trying to do the right thing. See, the policy doesn't have to gel in order to piss off liberals. It already worked.
How about the reduction on legal immigration? This guy knows it'll likely never (ever) pass--so, eh. But, again--good signaling. It upsets all the right people. And if it did pass? Well, those guys coming in weren't making America great anyway.
What about Obamacare? The guy is no fan! Now, he's (again) not dumb. He knows the reason the GOP can't repeal it is because it's taking away an entitlement that their base likes. So he's not surprised when it failed (thinks The Omnivore)--but ... Just trying it?
That's got some benefits. Just like The Omnivore expects the guy cheers all the regulatory rollbacks that Trump is doing even though they just help business in the margins--but they're a win for the team. Right? I mean, why not give business a boost.
But there's a trend here--there's a trend through all of this. The Paris Accord. The Transgenderd Troop Ban. The Obamacare Repeal. The reduction in taking in refugees and immigrants.
There's a trend. Do you see it? Look at what this guy said The Omnivore's agenda was. Now apply what you know about psychology.
Erase Every Trace of Obama
All these actions--pretty much everything Trump has done--isn't making "America Great Again." We don't even know what that means (we know what Bannon thinks it means). No--this is all about getting rid of Obama policies. Get rid of his regulations. Get rid of Obamacare. He signed the Paris Accord? Pull out.
The Iran treaty? Trump wants to rip it up--but his generals are like "nooooo." Letting Transgendered Troops serve? Almost no impact at all. The military doesn't care. Some evangelicals care. Nobody else--but it was an Obama policy--so points-for-repeal.
The TPP? That was the deal that could possibly give us regional leverage against China, right? This guy knows that--but chances are he cheered Trump tearing it up. Because it lets foreign countries sue us over trade deals? Nah, fam--this guy is smarter than that. It's good it's gone because it was a signature achievement of Obama.
That's a WIN, son. That's a 'W.'
So does The Omnivore want to get rid of every trace of dumb deplorables like him?
No. Not at all.
But if you're willing to trade that bill of particulars above for kicking Transgendered people out of the military, pulling out of a non-binding accord, and being cozy with Russia?
Then yeah: The Omnivore thinks you've got something to answer for.