Be Thankful for What Trump Is Not

I sometimes wonder: How many people are really stupid enough to believe in the insane religion of the left? Outside of our idiot intellectual elite, I mean. Outside of the knuckleheads on the New York Times op-ed page, or the buffoons who give literary awards to Ta-Nehisi Coates, or the jackasses who serve as administrators of universities. I can't believe that any substantial number of regular people are as moronic as these folks, that any substantial number really believe that, say, gender is a social construct or Islam is a religion of peace or socialism improves lives or man-made climate change threatens the existence of humanity.

This week, I entertained myself for an idle hour with some leftist reactions to President Trump's withdrawal from the environmentally useless and economically harmful Paris climate accord. "A traitorous act of war against the American people," thoughtfully opined leftist billionaire Tom Steyer. "Your kids are gonna die from climate change," was the sober judgement of Vice News editor Chelsey Coombs. "The United States resigned as leader of the Free World," was the sage assessment of CNN's Fareed Zakaria.

And sure, their leftist tears made a fine salty seasoning for my afternoon omelet. But still, I wonder: how many actual, common sense human beings buy into their silliness? Not many, polls suggest. A lot of people may mouth agreement, but I suspect many even of these know leftism is largely a virtue-signaling, power-grabbing scam.

But the problem is, a few dopey intellectuals and their absurd little notions can have outsized power: the power of the echo chamber, the power of fashionable acceptance, the power of creating the atmosphere within the Beltway Bubble. And while Republicans frequently strut and fret about their opposition to leftist malarkey, they just as frequently acquiesce to it in the event. Witness their inability to stem the disaster of Obamacare now that they finally have the chance.

Which is why this au revoir to Paris is so encouraging. By withdrawing from the accord, Trump proves he is not susceptible to the influence of the usual knuckleheads. He seems deaf to the echo chamber, indifferent to media acceptance, immune to the atmosphere. In fact, some of the very things that make Trump unappealing to gentle folk like me — his belligerence, his recklessness, his bullish and even bullying insistence on his own vision — are also what sometimes lift him above the Leftist Crazy that so addles the intelligentsia.

How important is that? Very.

The other day on my podcast, I interviewed free-speech hero, attorney Floyd Abrams. Abrams earned the hostility of conservatives by working for the right of the New York Times to publish the Pentagon Papers; and he earned the hostility of leftists by successfully arguing for Citizens United. Reading his excellent book The Soul of the First Amendment opened my eyes to the dangers even a few intellectual doofuses can create and (though this is clearly not the book's intention) strengthened my wary support of the president.