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In The American Conservative magazine, F.H. Buckley opines on Donald Trump’s popularity and the political elites who reject him. He writes:
The falcon cannot hear the falconer, wrote William Butler Yeats. Political leaders, like the falcon, were meant to obey their minders, but Yeats’s falcon had soared above them and loosed mere anarchy on the world. Today, Donald Trump’s campaign soars above our conservative elites, who in their foundations, their little magazines, their think tanks, define what conservatives may do or say. Trump ignores them, they tell us, and disorder and chaos must follow.
Mere anarchy is a fair description of the state of the Republican Party, at least amongst those who purport to be its falconers. Mimicking the vulgarity they decry in Trump, they employ every vile epithet to describe him and his followers. National Review’s Rich Lowry enthused that Carly Fiorina had “cut his balls off.” For Lowry’s colleague Kevin Williamson, Trump is a “witless ape … not just an ass, but an ass of exceptionally intense asininity.” As for Trump’s followers, George Will calls them “invertebrates,” while John Hood describes them as “a motley crew of simpletons, bigots, and cynical manipulators.” In their hatred of Trump, they have come to resemble the man they despise.
It’s not hard to see a little wounded self-love in all this. The conservative elites thought they had ownership rights to the Republican Party, at least to its thinking component, and it’s a psychic shock to be quite ignored. Trump boasts that he is a winner, but the party had settled into a comfortable second-class status, more concerned with the purity of its policies than with winning anything. In 2012 George Will said that if the Republicans lost that year’s election they should get out of the business, but that showed that he didn’t understand the party of beautiful losers. Romney lost, but let’s not forget that he had a very pretty 59-point plan.
There is, I fancy, one more thing that troubles our falconers. Worse still than Trump is the fact that so many Americans like him, ripping apart the imagined America of the elites, a preppy, mid-Atlantic country south of Iceland and east of The New Yorker. Their America has no monster-truck races, no hip-hop, no reality TV, no Donald Trump; and yet Trump is authentically American. He is Sam Slick the Clockmaker, Thomas Chandler Haliburton’s fast-talking, Yankee peddler, whom Haliburton’s Canadian and British readers saw as the archetypal American. He is, like Johnny Cash and Muhammad Ali, a person who could only be American, and whom Americans will recognize as one of their own. At some level, our elites must recognize this too, and in their anger experience the rage of Caliban seeing his face in the mirror.
Mike points out that Trump is popular because he is not speaking the holy writ language of Washington and the Constitution. He is speaking the language of the ‘Murican people.
This is a revolt. Trump may be the last chance we have to right our sinking ship using the constitutional tools we have at our disposal.
Written by: Audrey Sutton
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