THURSDAY, APRIL 21, 2022
No additional fish at this time: We're off on that mission of national import. We won't have further fish today. Quite possibly, no fish tomorrow as well.
In the meantime, we'll recommend this new post by Kevin Drum—a post in which Drum explores the return of the super-predator theme.
How unwise does our blue tribe get? This zombie theme qualifies as a recurring example.
During the 2016 campaign, Candidate Clinton was widely attacked, from within our own tribe, because she had used that term, on one occasion, back in the 1990s. (The term was judged to be presumptively racist.)
Did Trump end up reaching the White House on the force of that critique? There's no way to prove that he didn't!
This morning, the moral panic surrounding that term has returned to the New York Times. Drum provides some context from the 1990s. For the record, there's quite a bit more where that comes from.
We'll also suggest that you ponder this new piece by Jonathan Chait. Pleasingly snarky headline included, the essay begins as shown:
Trump Sees Very Fine People on Both Sides of Ukraine War
Last night [on April 18], Donald Trump issued one of his periodic official statements, expressing his regret about the course of Vladimir Putin’s attack on Ukraine. He did not use the name Putin. Nor, for that matter, did he use the word attack. Instead, Trump framed the invasion as a problem the two countries have tragically failed to work out together:
[Latest dumb, self-serving statement by Trump]
This remarkable construction deserves closer analysis, but first it’s worth understanding the context. Trump infamously described Putin as a “genius” for massing troops on Ukraine’s border. He has repeatedly declined efforts by allies such as Sean Hannity to coax him into condemning the invasion.
From that, a reader will almost surely get the impression that Trump has never condemned Mr. Putin's invasion. As we've noted again and again, that is simply untrue.
He has condemned the invasion, in very stark terms, on at least three separate occasions. We've posted those statements, and provided the links, again and again and again.
This doesn't mean that Trump's various statements make some sort of ultimate sense. His wandering, inane presentations almost never do.
But even as Trump wanders about, Chait engages in classic selective presentation. He mentions the statements which fit a pleasing, simplified cartoon. He disappears, or at least he seems to disappear, all the rest.
Donald J. Trump is deeply disordered. Hard though it may be for us blue tribals to understand, the daily performance of our own elites is remarkably pitiful too.
It's like this at times of moral panic. Or at least, so the experts have said.