A minor but nagging pet peeve: In our view, Andrew Sullivan has done good work in his Friday morning essays for New York Magazine.
That said, this new complaint activates a pet peeve, one we think is significant:
SULLIVAN (9/1/17): Even a week later, the stench of it hangs in the air. The pardon of Sheriff Joe Arpaio is one of the more chilling authoritarian moves that Trump has made so far. I say this not simply because Arpaio treated prisoners in his charge in barbaric ways; not just because the president described this brutality as Arpaio simply “doing his job”; not even because Arpaio proudly and constantly engaged in racial profiling, making Latino citizens and noncitizens alike afraid to leave their own homes. I say it for a simpler reason: because it is Trump’s deepest indication yet that the rule of law means nothing to him.We're puzzled by the constant outraged recitation of Trump's essential nature.
Does the rule of law "mean nothing to him?" People! Everything means nothing to him! That's the essence of the idea that he seems to be mentally ill.
It's our impression that Donald J. Trump seems to be some version of mentally ill. As we've said again and again, we think a more rational society would be discussing that possibility, difficult though such a discussion would be.
To us, it seems like the height of denial to keep expressing shock and surprise when he behaves as he does. He will always behave as he does. That's the essence of this deeply troubling state of affairs.
To his credit, Sullivan does see the ultimate danger here. He expresses it in this paragraph:
SULLIVAN: Is [the Arpaio pardon] also a signal that the president could pardon—even preemptively—anyone caught up in criminality in the Mueller investigation? I suspect so...An instinctual despot like Trump can find even the most benign of the president’s constitutional powers—the pardon—and turn it against the rule of law. We really need to remind ourselves of this on a daily basis if we are not to become numb to it: to advance his own interests, there is nothing this president would not do. If we enter, as we well might, a constitutional crisis, we have been warned all too clearly what this man is capable of.We agree with Sullivan's suggestion! When we see liberals yukking it up and popping the corn about the ongoing probe of Trump, we wonder if they've considered how dangerous the fellow could be if the walls do start closing in.
Something is wrong with Donald J. Trump. In various ways, we think we see a lot of people who haven't quite come to terms with this dangerous fact.