A Most Remarkable Year
In the last 12 months, U.S.-backed combat operations drove ISIS from its last bits of territory. America withdrew from the Paris agreement on climate change, UNESCO, and the Trans-Pacific Partnership. The House and Senate have come within sight of overhauling the tax code and dismantling Obamacare. Most recently, Donald Trump -- in a spectacular departure from his predecessor's Middle Eastern diplomacy -- has moved the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem.
It is as if a hurricane has swept through Washington. Each fallen pillar represents a very deliberate reversal of the status quo ante policies of Barack Obama. The entire edifice the former president erected in his eight years in office is in the process of being systematically demolished. Unsurprisingly, Crain's Chicago Business reporter Greg Hinz reported a very unhappy former president warning that Trump was nothing less than a new McCarthy, Nixon, or Hitler while speaking at the Economic Club of Chicago:
Obama said the United States had survived tough times before and could do so again, mentioning the age of McCarthyism and the attempted impeachment of former President Richard Nixon as examples. ...
[He] urged the country not to "grow complacent," saying ... "things could fall apart quickly." Hinz writes Obama then brought up the specter of Adolf Hitler, who came to power in Democratic Germany amid the financial crisis of the 1930s. "Sixty million people died … " he reports Obama said. "So, you've got to pay attention. And vote." ...
Hinz called the comments "remarkable" and framed them as a rebuke of current president Donald Trump.
What Obama understandably neglected to mention was that a substantial percentage of American voters elected Trump precisely to undertake that teardown, an endeavor referred to as draining the swamp, aimed at nothing less than shrinking the size of government and breaking the perceived power of the elite. The commitment to that goal is reflected in the Deplorables' willingness to ignore the media: "Nearly half of voters, 46 percent, believe the news media fabricate news stories about President Donald Trump and his administration, according to a new POLITICO/Morning Consult poll. ... More than 3/4 of Republican voters, 76 percent, think the news media invent stories about Trump and his administration."
Opposed to the Deplorables are "liberals turned radicals" called the "Resistance." In the words of the New York Times, "Donald Trump’s election inspired such moral revulsion and political outrage that ... parts of the American electorate had taken to calling themselves 'the resistance,' evoking the guerrillas who took to the hills and fought the Nazis during World War II ... self-styled revolutionaries."
After a period of sheer disbelief these liberal revolutionaries are now going head to head with the Deplorable rebels. The game's afoot and nobody can easily call it off.