If Only Someone Could Have Warned Them
To be a NeverTrumper these days is to wonder if it is possible to die of smugness. As we watch everything we warned about come true, it’s hard to resist the temptation to go around shouting “I told you so” all the time.
So I haven’t resisted the temptation, not entirely. My reaction to Donald Trump’s now-infamous dinner at Mar-a-Lago with rabid antisemite Kanye West and white nationalist Nick Fuentes recently went up at The Bulwark under the title I’ve been using in place of “I told you so”: “If Only Someone Could Have Warned Them.” That’s what keeps going through my mind as I’ve watched one Republican luminary after another come to a sickening realization about the price they are now paying for refusing to stand against Trump.
Please take advantage of my annual Holiday Sale. Click here to renew at 10% off.
Also, this makes a great gift for someone who values a rational perspective on world events, and Substack makes it easy to give a gift subscription.
Finally, please consider a donation to help keep The Tracinski Letter going. Go to the “Support” page on my old site: https://tracinskiletter.com/support/.
My biggest new observation is this one:
The problem, after all, is not a lack of evidence about who Donald Trump is and how he is hurting the Republican party. The problem is a kind of mental block, a submission, a willingness to not see a thing because it is inconvenient for one’s partisan allegiances. It is a habit of seeing things in terms of what you think the people around you will accept, rather than in terms of what things actually are.
Republicans didn’t just sell out to Trump in a purely pragmatic way. They sold out to him cognitively, and what they need to reclaim is their ability to see the world independently and evaluate it through their own eyes. It’s not too late—it’s never too late—but it gets harder the longer one puts it off.
By the way, the editors at The Bulwark insisted that I refer to West as “Ye,” since he has legally changed his name to that monosyllabic moniker. It doesn’t really matter much, but I won’t be doing that here in my own newsletter, for the same reason I don’t call Bruce Jenner “Caitlin.” Mentally ill celebrities are free to adopt their weird quirks, but there’s no reason I have to humor them.
The only thing I would add is that that events of the past two weeks validate one of the core NeverTrump contentions: that character and intellect matter.