RUSH: David Gelernter is a computer science professor at Yale. He now has a social media blog and website and his piece at the Wall Street Journal today is: “The Conservative Resistance Is Futile.” He’s talking about conservative/ Republican Never Trumpers here, but his analysis I think also serves to describe the resistance to Trump inside the Beltway. He makes a relevant point as well that the chosen term “the resistance” is designed to slowly seep into our popular culture and be compared to the resistance to the Nazis, say, in France and in the U.K. during World War II.
There is, in his opinion — and he’s right about this — an attempt here to have this term “the resistance” trickle and populate, grow sprouts throughout our pop culture. It’s designed to just, over time, come to mean that the resistance is honorable and decent and good, that the resistance to Trump is akin to the resistance to the Axis Powers. Well, the Germans and the Nazis in World War II. And he’s absolutely right about that. And he points out that there have been many conservatives, establishment intellectual types inside the Beltway who have themselves joined this resistance, and his piece is about how they’re just… They’re too smart by half. They’re missing the boat, and their effort is futile anyway.
RUSH: I want to set it up by sharing some things Gelernter writes in the Wall Street Journal today in “The Conservative ‘Resistance’ Is Futile.” Again, remember, now, he’s targeting his comments here to conservative intellectuals. You know me; I don’t like to name names because that just creates these phony feuds that get started and it makes everything personal, and it camouflages or masks my real intent. I’m not here to call any individual out and to start back-and-forth feuds with people. That’s banal to me, and I’m not interested, and I don’t respond in kind when somebody tries it with me.
The only reason I’m tempted to mention names is to give you an idea, but I don’t think you need names. I think you know who we’re talking about: conservative intellectuals — you know, media types and thinkers and what have you — inside the Beltway. Gelernter says, “Many intellectuals think Mr. Trump is vulgar. That includes conservatives. They think he’s a peasant and talks like one. Every time he opens his mouth, all they hear is a small-time Queens operator who struck it big but has never had a proper education, and embarrasses the country wherever he goes, whatever he says.
“It never dawns on them that the president can’t stand them any more than they can stand him. Yet they expect him to treat them with respectful courtesy if he ever runs into them — as he should, and on the whole does. Conceivably they should treat him the same way,” but they don’t. Gelernter says, look, I’m like everybody else. “I’d love for him to be a more eloquent, elegant speaker. But if I had to choose between deeds and delivery, it wouldn’t be hard. Many conservative intellectuals insist…” By the way, this covers everyone, not just conservative intellectuals. This covers CNN. This covers the New York Times.
Any of these pseudo smartest-people-in-the-world-in-their-own-minds people in the Washington establishment, this accurately portrays and discusses them all. “Many conservative intellectuals insist that Mr. Trump’s wrong policies are what they dislike.” They don’t like his policies. So how about this? “So what if he has restarted the large pipeline projects, scrapped many statist regulations, appointed a fine cabinet and a first-rate Supreme Court justice, asked NATO countries to pay what they owe, re-established solid relations with Israel and Saudi Arabia”?
So what if he’s “signaled an inclination to use troops in Afghanistan to win and not merely cover our retreat, led us out of the Paris Climate Accord, plans to increase military spending … is trying to get rid of Obamacare to the extent possible, proposed to lower taxes significantly and revamp immigration policy and enforcement? What has he done lately?” The point here: Look at this list of achievements that not a single Republican president since Reagan could point to and say, “I’ve done that. I’ve done that. I’ve done that.” These are significant achievements and/or significant movements on the road to achievement.
They represent the fulfillment of campaign promise after campaign promise after campaign promise. And the inside-the-Beltway hordes despise Trump because they think he’s a vulgarian, because they think he’s uneducated, because they don’t like the way he speaks, because he doesn’t comport himself the way they think propriety should dictate. To them, mannerisms and behavior and presentation trump everything, including achievements, including deeds. Gelernter is pointing out: Screw all the rest of that!
If we actually have somebody in the Oval Office who’s gonna try to move this country in the much-needed right direction in as many ways as Trump is doing and is trying to do, then I don’t care if he’s from Queens and doesn’t know how to speak as well as I wish he did. So he’s basically portraying all this conservative intellectual — well, inside-the-Beltway — opposition as a bunch of phony baloney, plastic banana, good-time rock ‘n’ roll superiority condescension that is aimless and will have no chance of defeating Trump, whether they call themselves “the resistance” or not. But then the exclamation point:
“Conservative thinkers…” And again, I think this could apply to any number of Republicans as well who are not just conservatives, but who live in the establishment inside the Beltway or are part of that club. “Conservative thinkers should recall that they helped create President Trump.” Do you know how? “They never blasted President Obama as he deserved. Mr. Obama’s policies punished the economy and made the country and its international standing worse year by year; his patronizing arrogance drove people crazy. He was the perfect embodiment of a one-term president.
“The Tea Party outbreak of 2009-10 made it clear where he was headed. History will record that the press saved him.” Well, the GOP did, too, by not really choosing to align with the Tea Party. “Naturally the mainstream press loved him, but too many conservative commentators never felt equal to taking him on. They had every reason to point out repeatedly that Mr. Obama was the worst president since Jimmy Carter, surrounded by a left-wing cabinet and advisers, hostile to Israel, crazed regarding Iran, and even less competent to deal with the issues than Mr. Carter was — which is saying plenty.
“But these conservative intellectuals didn’t say plenty. They didn’t say much at all. The rank-and-file noticed and got mad.” That’s you and me. “Even their supposed champions didn’t grasp what life under Obama was like,” meaning the inside-the-Beltway crowd didn’t have to live under the gobbledygook that Obama was creating elsewhere in the country. To them everybody was fine and happy. Everybody had their place. The establishment and everybody in it was fine, hunky-dory.
It really is a great indictment of how the conservative intellectualism is now oriented and organized to oppose Trump as part of the resistance and never once got anywhere near this kind of resistance to Obama — and in so doing actually helped create the circumstances that gave us President Trump. I think it’s spot on, and many of these people are now sitting in judgment of who is and who isn’t a real and legitimate conservative, and who is and who isn’t to be tossed out of the so-called movement. You get down to brass tacks.
You compare the achievements of Donald Trump in the first six months compared to the damage of Obama over eight years. Let’s look at North Korea for just one example. I interviewed Ted Cruz yesterday after the program for the next issue of The Limbaugh Letter, and we started talking about North Korea. I said, “Senator, North Korea doesn’t have two cents. Where are they getting the money? Where are they getting all the money to produce, manufacture, and launch all of these missiles and to maintain this military? Their citizenry is starving if they can’t find dogs to eat. Where in the world are they getting the money?”
And Ted Cruz properly pointed out a story I had yesterday in the Stack, didn’t get to. Well, largely they got it from the Clinton administration. And he was right. The Clinton administration, led by none other than Madeleine Albright and others in the Department of Commerce, thought that they could deal with Kim Jong-un’s father, Kim Jong-il, by being nice, by giving them $4 billion seed money to develop a power grid so that North Korea could turn on the lights at night. And instead what North Korea did was take the money and use it to ramp up their military and their nuclear program.
Now they’re allied with Iran, which is also a nation that’s being made nuclear possible by Barack Obama. So the last two Democrat presidents have actually enabled these two primary enemies, North Korea and Iran. And here comes Trump trying to reverse it, take it away, and stop both of these countries by one way or another. And people smart enough to know better continue to act like Donald Trump is the problem that Obama never was.
And if the truth be known, the intellectuals, be they left or right in Washington, never wanted to criticize Obama because he was so eloquent, and he was such a great representative of all of them: Harvard education, Harvard Law. He knew how to speak to make himself sound really smart while never saying anything. That’s a classic requirement of intellectualism, being able to speak and pause and breathe and use the right abbreviations. Never saying anything but making it look like you know everything. But you’re being very judicious in what you admit because the precious few number of people only are capable of knowing whatever it is you’re talking about.
It’s the height of arrogance and the height of condescension. And because Obama reminded so many inside-the-Beltway intellectuals of themselves, the kind of people they’d like to be, the kind of people they would like to be seen as, they couldn’t bring themselves to criticize him, because it was like criticizing themselves. Hence we get David Brooks saying he knew Obama was gonna be a great president when he saw the crease in his slacks at a dinner party. He’s dead serious when he says this kind of stuff.
So naturally these people are gonna think Trump’s a vulgarian, they’re gonna think he’s an embarrassment and so forth. But if you look at the policy ledger, not even close.
RUSH: So I just got a couple emails. “Why did you give that guy in the Wall Street Journal credit? You’ve been saying that stuff for six months here about Trump.” I know, but I always love it when there are Rush echoes out there, folks. I love it when I find in the pages of major publications points that I’ve been making, and Mr. Gelernter wrote it. And it’s fine; I’m happy to credit him. He even goes on to make another point that I make that these conservative intellectuals do what they do hoping for respect and favorable treatment from the publications inside the Beltway — the Post, the New York Times.
Gelernter points out it never works that way, and the reason it doesn’t is that the left wing doesn’t read them! I’ve made this point I don’t know how long. I know more about liberalism than liberalism does. I know more about Jim Acosta than he does, within this current context. Unlike them, I read things they write, I read things they say. I have to. I do a better job of presenting both sides of every issue on this program than they do, because they don’t listen to this program, and they don’t read conservative publications.
So they don’t know what conservative intellectuals are saying, therefore conservative intellectuals cannot be treated with respect because these close minded leftists never expose themselves to conservatism. And Gelernter points that out.