Enemies of the (American) People
President Trump has caught a lot of flack about calling the press “enemies of the people.”
The usual suspects and some not quite so usual, people I read and enjoy and who in general are fairly sane and haven’t caught the rabies of "never Trump", have gone out of their way to beat their hairy chests and cry woe onto us because “that phrase has a history.”
What I hear is someone objecting to “tone.” And by the way. this is me rolling my eyes so hard they fell out of my head, rolled on the floor and the cats are playing with them as we speak.
Here is the problem. I see why President Trump said that, and you know what? He was no more and no less than precisely right.
I see why he ignored the history of the phrase to use it too.
First, he’s not a professional politician. Second, he’s the sort of businessman at the sort of level who while trying to be bombastic and upselling is actually neither required to be very good at a verbal marketing level, nor, frankly, very good at it. Smaller-level, retail salesmen are required to choose their words carefully and know how to avoid/inflame the public’s sensitivities. For that matter so are lawyers, who occupy the ranks of most of our politicians.
Trump might know how to encapsulate things in a memorable way (“Make America Great Again). But mostly he goes for short and punchy: “We’ll have a great x, it will be the best x.” “We’ll win so much you’ll get tired of winning.”
And he gets, perhaps better than any of our presidents in the past, that the busy, flooded-with-entertainment American people functionally have ADHD. We need something we can say in one phrase.
Given all that, how would you describe the situation we’re in? Where our media — and most of our intellectual class, at least those who have access to a public-megaphone —are functionally trying to destroy the nation and everything it has stood for?
I’ve described it as: if we had lost the cold war, other than enemy troops in the streets and our economy being looted by Moscow, how would it be different? If you look just at our education, entertainment, and mass information systems, what would be functionally different?
In the schools, our children are being taught that capitalism is bad and that communism and its pale-pink brother, socialism, are the ideal systems. (I had a longer bit on that, but I’m spinning it off into another post, while I concentrate on the press.)
Entertainment is no better.
And then there are our media, which is what Trump has dubbed “Enemy of the People.”