Missing Manners

March 11, 2016

I just spent the last thirty minutes or so reading through stories about the cancelation of a D. Trump rally in Chicago this afternoon. Security felt the crowd was too unstable, they feared riots. Apparently, thousands of University students and others mobilized and gathered, inside and out, in peaceful demonstration. Their message: there is no room for Trump’s vitriol in their community. But it quickly became not peaceful. Hundreds of police called in, fights broken up, event canceled.

I’m wondering where all this is going to go. Like everyone else. I’m seeing months of ugly confrontations between Trump diehards and protestors who are soon, I imagine, to ramp up their presence at all of his events. And why not? It’s time to mobilize, people. This bloated ego of a guy and his hysterical minions have been sucking up way too much airtime. What better way to show that, in fact, the country is actually made up of people who care about human rights, civil rights, income equality, the environment (and some of them are actually brown). Trump’s is not the only story here.

Trump, bragging about the size of his rallies, says that he’s generating newfound interest in the presidential campaign which will increase republican voters, and that the party should thank him. We shall see. Republican operatives seem not to want his particular brand of angry, uneducated guys, but maybe they’re desperate enough to take what they can get.

In any case, I think we’re in for lots of scuffles and skirmishes. I wish I could say it was fun to watch. But, it’s just not.

Oh.. anyway. Blechh.

In other news, Trump’s strategy to “look presidential” at last night’s republican debate, to quiet things down and to behave civilly (he even had to draw attention to the fact because, damn, he was working hard at it),  was a good effort. Utterly, laughably transparent, but fine. A few weeks back, he said he was going to tone it down and boasted that he could look more presidential than anybody (direct quote). He trotted the new him out last night. The media bought it.

And the other guys responded by also toning it down.  Their strategy was to stick to policy points, some sillily pandering, and for the most part, a quiet night ensued.

Which sure took the wind out of Kasich’s sails as the other guys, behaving adultly, undermined his best feature. Kasich’s I’m-the-only-guy on stage-acting-like-a-grownup fell flat in the subdued, relatively polite tone of last night’s event. But the truth is, while Kasich has seemed so reasoned and experienced, he’s really only attractive as a candidate because the rest of the field is so bonkers.  And now that the others have assumed these civil demeanors, Kasich’s pretty much got nothing left. He just sounds whiny now. He’s prolly done.  Hoping he kills it in Ohio, though (and Rubio in Florida). That would make things interesting. I want Trump stopped. He could be the best thing ever for the democratic party, but I just can’t stand this.


So, a few weeks back, David Brooks, writing in the NYT, said the below. I know Brooks is considered pretty moderate for a conservative–which is why he’s one of the few conservative commentators I can listen to–but I think it says a lot that he expresses this:


Agree wholeheartedly. No doubt in my mind that history will ably sift through all the hysterical, reactionary, fear-based (and yep, bigoted) garbage and tell an amazing–THE amazing–story about the Obama years.