Victor Davis Hanson, brilliantly as usual, discusses the Deep State, Hubris, Nemesis, and Donald Trump.
[T]hey never say to themselves, â€œIâ€™m not elected.â€ The constitution says an elected president sets foreign policy. Period. So thereâ€™s this sense that they, as credential experts, have a value system, and the value system is they have an inordinate respect for an Ivy League degree or a particular alphabetic combination after their name: a J.D., a Ph.D., an MBA, or a particular resume. I worked at the NSC, then I transferred over to the NSA, and then, I went into the State Department. And we saw that in really vivid examples during the Adam Schiff impeachment inquiries, where a series of State Department people, before they could even talk, [they] said, â€œIâ€™m the third generation to serve in my family. This is my resume. This is where I went to school. This is where I was posted.â€ And in the case of Adam Schiff, we saw these law professors, who had gone in and out of government, and they had these academic billets.
And to condense all that, it could be distilled by saying the deep state makes arguments by authority: â€œIâ€™m an authority, and I have credentials, and therefore, ipse dixit, what I say matters.â€ And they donâ€™t want to be cross-examined, they donâ€™t want to have their argument in the arena of ideas and cross-examination. They think it deserves authority, and they have contemptâ€”and I mean that literallyâ€”contempt for elected officials. [They think:] â€œThese are buffoons in private enterprise. They are the CEO in some company; theyâ€™re some local Rotary Club member. They get elected to Congress, and then we have to school them on the international order or the rules-based order.â€ They have a certain lingo, a proper, sober, and judicious comportment.
So you can imagine that Donald Trumpâ€”to take a metaphor, Rodney Dangerfield out of Caddyshackâ€”comes in as this, what they would say, stereotype buffoon and starts screaming and yelling. And he looks different. He talks different. And he has no respect for these people at all. Maybe thatâ€™s a little extreme that he doesnâ€™t, but he surely doesnâ€™t. And that frightens them. And then they coalesce. And Iâ€™m being literal now. Remember the anonymous Sept. 5, 2018, op-ed writer who said, â€œIâ€™m here actively trying to oppose Donald Trump.â€ He actually said that he wanted him to leave office. Then, Admiral [William] McRaven said, â€œthe sooner, the better.â€ This is a four-star admiral, retired. [He] says a year before the election â€¦ Trump should leave: â€œthe sooner, the better.â€ Thatâ€™s a pretty frightening idea. And when you have Mark Zaid, the lawyer for the whistleblower and also the lawyer for some of the other people involved in thisâ€”I think itâ€™s a conspiracyâ€”saying that one coup leads to another. â€¦ People are talking about a coup, then we have to take them at their own word. …
I think that people feel that for a variety of reasonsâ€”cultural, social, politicalâ€”that Trump is not deserving of the respect that most presidents receive, and therefore any means necessary to get rid of him are justified. And for some, itâ€™s the idea that heâ€™s had neither political or military prior experience. For others, itâ€™s his outlandish appearance, his Queens accent, as I said, his Rodney Dangerfield presence. And for othersâ€”I think this is really underestimatedâ€”he is systematically undoing the progressive agenda of Barack Obama, which remember, was supposed to be not just an eight-year regnum, but 16 years with Hillary Clinton. That wouldâ€™ve reformed the court. It would have shut down fossil fuel exploration, pipelines, more regulationsâ€”well, pretty much what Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders are talking about right now. That was going to happen. And so for a lot of people, they think, â€œWow, if Donald Trump is elected in 2020â€â€”and he will be, according to the fears of Representatives Al Green or [Alexandria] Ocasio-Cortez or Nancy Pelosi; remember, they keep saying this impeachment is about the 2020 [election]â€”â€œweâ€™ve got to ensure the integrity.â€ Thatâ€™s what Nadler said today.
But if Trump is elected, that would mean eventually in five more years, [weâ€™d have a] 7â€“2 Supreme Court, 75 percent of the federal judiciary [would be] conservative and traditional and constructionist. â€¦ We are the worldâ€™s largest oil and gas producer and exporter, but we probably would be even bigger. And when you look at a lot of issues, such as abortion, or identity politics, or the securing of the border, or the nature of the economy or foreign policy, they think America as we know it will beâ€”to use a phrase from Barack Obamaâ€”â€œfundamentally transformed.â€ So thatâ€™s the subtext of it. Stop this man right now before he destroys the whole progressive projectâ€”and with it, the reputation of the media. Because the media saw this happening and they said, â€œYou know what?â€â€”as Jim Rutenberg in the New York Times or Christiane Amanpour have saidâ€”â€œâ€¦ you really donâ€™t need to be disinterested.â€
Trump is beyond the pale, so itâ€™s OK to editorialize in your news coverage. And so the Shorenstein Center has reported that 90 percent of all news coverage [of Trump] is negative. So theyâ€™ve thrown their hat in the ring and said, weâ€™re going to be part of the Democratic progressive agenda to destroy this president. But if they fail, then their reputation goes down with the progressive project. And thatâ€™s happening now. CNN is at all-time low ratings, at least the last four years. And the network news is losing audiences, and most of the major newspapers are, as well. So thereâ€™s a lot of high stakes here. And if Donald Trump survives and were to be reelected, I donâ€™t know what would happen on the left. It would make the 2016 reaction look tame in comparison.
HT: The News Junkie.