Post's Ron Charles spots President Lear!


Dangerously, this is apt:
Ron Charles is the editor of the Washington Post's Book World.

In Monday morning's paper, he said that he had spotted our own version of Lear:
CHARLES (5/29/17): By now it should be clear that the Trump administration is nothing like the ruling power of Orwell's Oceania or—another common claim—like Margaret Atwood's Gilead in "The Handmaid's Tale." The repressive governments of those imagined hellscapes are marked, primarily, not by their vast deception but by their absolute order. Flawless message control and meticulous image manipulation are the foundations of their sovereignty. Nothing could be further from the continuous upheaval that Trump wreaks.

For literary precedent, we should skip over the dystopian novels of the 20th century, which were predicated on terrifyingly invasive management. The most prominent characteristic of our era is not the monolithic power of one party, but the erratic personality of one man. Every morning, all sides of the political establishment—his family and friends, along with "the haters and losers"—must contend with Trump's zigzagging proclamations, his grandiose promises, his spasmodic attachments.

Consequently, the best literary precedent for what we're enduring now is not the static image of Big Brother but the turbulent eruptions of King Lear. In Shakespeare's immortal tragedy, composed around 1605, we see a kingdom entirely in thrall to the fitful mentality of its leader with his "unconstant starts."
As we've noted before, we think this comparison is apt.

To our fitful ear, Charles treats this as maybe a bit of a lark. We're more strongly inclined to see the danger here.


  1. Was today's two minutes hate on Rachel canceled? I must have missed the memo.


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  2. My own literary parallel is a little bit less classic. I see Trump as Zaphod Beeblebrox. As Adams said "the job of the President is not to wield power - it is to draw attention away from it. Zaphod was good at his job." (not an exact quote)

    Charles writes that we "must contend" with every little thing that Trump tweets or does. I disagree. I think there is an industry that makes their living looking for something or somebody to get outraged about. If they were not micro-focusing on Trump they would find somebody else. Maybe the owner of the Clippers or a pitcher for the Braves (who did Rocker pitch for? Only the google knows (Okay, baseball fans too)) or the man who shot Trayvon Valance.

    On the one side we have people who make a good living whipping up the hate, and on the other side we have people who want their daily dose of haterade. They lap it up and then call Shirona to "talk about the teachers that they hate".

    Well I supposed everybody's gotta make a living and everybody should have some hobbies, but there is no MUST about it.

  3. Trump is pulling us out of the Paris agreement. That makes this no fit subject for effete amusement.

  4. Anyone who worries about global warming should hate the Paris Agreement. It's virtually a fake. It amounts to bailing out the Titanic with tea cups.

    1. Client-change denier pollutes the com-box

      Your concern is noted, concern troll.

    2. DinC,
      If your point is that fossil fuel subsidies should have ended during the Nixon era, right on!

      BTW, Reagan ripped Carter's solar panels out of the White House because he's an evil asshole, not because he was an addled Alzheimer's patient who couldn't understand right from wrong.

  5. It looks like Trump wasn't the only paranoid candidate.

    Hillary launches astonishing conspiracy claim that Trump won the election because he 'colluded' with 1,000 Russian agents who filled Facebook with 'lies' and Twitter with 'bots'

    1. Dear miserable troll,
      Your problem is that everything she actually said is true. Why don't you read a real publication instead of that fishwrap you cited to.

    2. Well, Anon, you are are correct that Hillary didn't make it up. She was quoting Sen. Warner.

      But, was Sen. Warner correct? He asserted,"that there were upwards of a thousand internet trolls working out of a facility in Russia" spreading malicious lies about Hillary. How Sen. Warner could have known this was not apparent to me. He didn't provide a source. The Russians would seem to be the only ones who could have confirmed this story.

    3. Shorter David troll: "Look, the goalposts are over there."

    4. How Sen. Warner could have known this was not apparent to me.

      That's cause you're a lying bastard, trollscum. You just can't think of a way a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee would know this.

      We have now reached the point where tRump supporters are literally attacking our intelligence agencies while defending fucking Russian spies. The orange pervert pussygrabber just yesterday continued his campaign of obstruction of justice by accusing the former FBI Director and the former Director of the CIA of committing perjury.

      So now it is reported that the Democrats, who have excoriated Carter Page about Russia, don't want him to testify. He blows away against him & now wants to clear his name by showing "the false or misleading testimony by James Comey, John Brennan..." Witch Hunt!

      Unbelievably, that was the President of the United States speaking.

      It's being reported now that Comey will testify under oath "to confirm bombshell accusations that President Donald Trump pressured him to end his investigation into a top Trump aide's ties to Russia, a source close to the issue said Wednesday."

      Just think of that. Comrade DinC is on record as defending this attempt to obstruct the investigation. Pay close attention to this trollscum. As the walls close in on his hero the pervert pussygrabber lying bastard fraud conman traitor tRump, Comrade DinC is going to get more and more nasty.

    5. "Play close attention to this trollscum."

      I prefer that he/she/it crawl back under the rock he/she/it crawled out of.

    6. The Daily Caller? Again, comrade?

      Isn't that the same source you used about a week ago who wrote a completely dishonest account of Brennan's testimony which, trollscum that you are, you rushed over here to dump onto our carpet.

      Why yes, yes it is indeed.

      David in Cal May 23, 2017 at 8:51 PM

      Brennan's position is clear, according to today's testimony:

      Former CIA Director John Brennan said Tuesday President Donald Trump did not attempt to enlist the help of any official in the intelligence community to kill the investigation of his former national security advisor, Michael T. Flynn.

      Brennan’s comment in a congressional hearing contradicts widespread media reports charging the Trump White House attempted to derail an investigation of Flynn, who is facing multiple probes about his relationship with Russian officials and business dealings with the government of Turkey.

      Comrade DinC doesn't care that the source he uses is pure bullshit, just as long as it advances his agenda. There is no way to break through to people like this. They are not shamed, embarrassed to use questionable sources after being burned numerous times. Proving the point that Comrade DinC is not here for honest discussion but rather just to spam and troll. Comrade DinC is a phony trollscum.

    7. DNC Data Director: Hillary Claims Are ‘F**king Bulls**t’

    8. Here is how a dishonest troll operates. The troll takes a dishonest headline about one thing from a proven dishonest blog as support for the troll's dishonest claim about another thing.

      First of all, Therriault is not the DNC Data Director. Instead, he is employed by the City of Boston. Secondarily, the dishonest troll begins his attack on Hillary Clinton by claiming that she is baselessly "paranoid" about Russian intervention in the election and then cites a headline by the Daily Caller in which Therriault disputes Clinton's claim that she was saddled with poor data from the DNC. Do you see the dishonesty at work here?

      Therriault certainly understands how his emotional defense of the DNC data team he directed (and that he left in June or July 2016)is being played by dishonest trolls and wingnut blogs:

      [6/1/17 Wapo]
      "Update: Therriault comments to the Post: 'Even if they weren't meant to be taken personally, yesterday's comments were hurtful to a lot of people, and it really upset me to see that happen to my team. After posting, my tweets got way more attention than I'd expected, and most of it wasn't from people who actually cared about DNC data; it was from people who either wanted to re-argue last year's elections or enjoyed watching Dems fight amongst themselves. I'm not interested in providing material for either of those, so I took them down to avoid further drama.'”

      Guess which camp dishonest troll David in Cal is from?

    9. David in Cal,
      Remember last Summer and Fall when you used to spend your time on the internet making believe you had a problem with corruption?
      It was almost like there was an iota of seriousness to it.

    10. DinC isn't falling for any of Hillary's BS. He KNOWS she lost the election because she murdered Seth Rich in cold blood, and he's got the proof from the Daily Caller.

    11. 8 official GOP-led investigations (and many, many more unofficial ones) to come up with Hillary's corruption, and all they could find was she's sloppy with her emails.
      C'mon David, repeat it with me: "Hillary Clinton is easily the least corrupt major-party Presidential nominee in at least 4 decades."

    12. 9:12.
      I assume David in Cal knows Trump won due to America's white supremacy problem, like anyone not paid by the corporate media to make believe it was anything else.

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