Tuesday, September 01, 2015

not to be left out, the WaPo takes its tuesday editorial whacks at mr. miracle too...,


WaPo |  Trump, on the evidence of past behavior, would take whatever political shape the moment required. But the direction upon which his spinning compass has settled is instructive. His approach has little to do with the Republican Party’s history of religious conservatism. Nor is it rooted primarily in tea party constitutionalism. Trump is pressing a case against corrupt and cosmopolitan elites; against mass and illegal immigration and the dilution of American identity; and against the economic dislocations of free trade and business capitalism. 

Insofar as Trump leads a movement, it is headed in the direction of a more European form of secular, nationalist, right-wing populism. Were Trump to succeed, the GOP would be an anti-immigration party of the white working class. Before he fails — as he certainly will — Americans may long for the good old days of the religious right. 

A number of thoughtful conservatives are attempting to take the good parts of Trump’s message — his unapologetic nationalism, his identification with working-class discontents — while minimizing the parts that appeal to the lowest human instincts. They prefer their Trumpism with a little less Trump. But by leading off with the issue of immigration, by proposing to narrow the protections of the 14th Amendment, by representing undocumented Mexicans as rapists, criminals and sources of infectious disease, by pledging to construct a wall across a continent, by promising the roundup and forced deportation of 11 million people, Trump has made looking on the bright side pretty difficult. In fact, Trump’s political approach is defined by the fomenting of conflict with foreigners: with scheming Mexicans and predatory Chinese. Remove the appeal to base instincts and you are left with little but opposition to entitlement reform.