A real hanky-wringer from the NYT. And you guys know I don’t link those lightly—or at all—unless there’s real amusement value to be had.
Every incumbent president looms large over the contest to determine his opponent, but the shadow cast by Trump is bloated beyond measure. He’s not just influencing the Democratic race. He’s perverting it. It looks and sounds little like 2016, 2012, 2008 or any other year that I can easily recall, and the main reason isn’t rising progressivism, increasing diversity or metastasizing social media. It’s Trump.
He’s altering the standards by which candidates are judged. He’s warping the lens through which they’re viewed. Everything is a response to him, a reading of him, a repudiation of him. He’s the reference point, as omnipresent in Democrats’ motivations and calculations as he is on cable news. The Democrat who wins the party’s presidential nomination will be the Democrat who fits most felicitously into a Trump-stamped and Trump-ravaged landscape, and if that Democrat goes all the way, it will be a destiny decreed largely by Trump.
Trump, for example, gets credit for the Democratic primary’s defining aspect, which is the sheer number of candidates — 23. They assessed his underwhelming approval rating,
So “underwhelming” it’s higher than both Obama’s and Clinton’s.
factored in his combustibility and decided that if ever a sitting president looked vulnerable and if any year appeared ripe for a Democratic takeover, that president is Trump and that year is 2020. The many long shots among them weren’t dissuaded by their odds, because Trump took an unconventional route to a victory that stunned him as much as it did anybody else. It suggested that the old rules were out the window and you never really know.
That’s another thing all you staid, old-guard hacks missed: the old rules ARE out the window, yet both you and the Conservative Inc NeverTrumpTards continue to purvey your turgid analyses based on those now-defunct old rules.
But the congested field is suffocating qualified aspirants who would otherwise find oxygen. It’s putting an extra premium on viral moments and supersize conceits. It’s privileging celebrity. All of that will factor into who prevails, and all of that is because of Trump.
“Qualified aspirants”? Name two from out of that pack of rabid, baying hyenas. Just two. Go on, I’ll wait.
“Electability” dominates Democratic voters’ thoughts, because many of them are more horrified by four more years of Trump than they were by four more years of his Republican predecessors.
Remarkably, Bruni just got something right, if only accidentally and not for the reason he thinks. Those Republican predecessors being part of the phony Tame Opposition, willing to roll over and pant for their masters, Democrat-Socialist voters (the ones actually alive, that is) would naturally be more comfortable with the prospect of spending a term pretending to be governed by them. They’d still scream bloody murder about “fascism” and “Hitler” and all the rest, sure. But they wouldn’t have been driven right to Bedlam’s very doorstep by, say, ¡YEB! as they have been by Trump.
There’s more, and it’s the usual noxious hellbrew of lies, distortion, sleazy insinuation, and hypocrisy the dwindling handful who still bother with the NYT at all have come to know and love, so I won’t bother with deconstructing any more of it. But taken as the wailing denunciation of reality from a broken shitlib that it is, it’s still a pleasant read nonetheless.