I’ve got a new podcast up and this post gives you a quick rundown regarding the extraordinary treatment according Trump that makes him incomparable.
To those of my friends who preferring reading over listening, I totally understand. My preferred way of getting information is also through reading. Still, I’ve learned to love podcasts for the times when I can’t read and desperately want something to keep my brain busy (exercising, cleaning, dog walking, etc.).
For my past podcasts, I’ve written a blog post and essentially read it as a podcast. Tonight, though, I was too tired to write, but I still had some thoughts swirling around that I desperately wanted to get out. The result is a podcast that’s based purely on the information in my brain, rather than a post that serves as a podcast script. If you’d like to listen to it, you can find it at Libsyn or Apple podcasts, or you can just listen through the link below.
Here’s the gist of the podcast: A couple of podcasts ago, I mentioned that, even though it’s just me and the mic, I get stage fright. A friend recommended Toastmasters and I checked out our local chapter. Not only did I like it, I was reminded that, while the speaker thinks she’s saying one thing, different members of the audience pick up entirely different things. This goes some way to explaining the wildly different responses among conservatives to Trump. Some hear funny; some hear gross. Some see a true conservative; some see a wild poser.
I explained, though, that I think minds can change. After all, I went from being a born and raised Democrat to becoming a stone-cold conservative. I ran down a bit of my history, something that long-time blog readers know well by now, considering that I mention it often enough. It’s very much a part of who I am and where I’ve now found myself.
Then, in the peculiar way I have of taking a serpentine path from A to B to C via L, Z, and R, I worked my way to what I think is a very important point for those who keep pointing out that Trump is “doing it wrong.” Trump is the first president we’ve seen doing it [meaning behind-the-scenes White House work] at all! No other president has ever been the subject of this kind of leak, one that second guesses his every move after first running his words and actions through the “hate blender.”
The kind of gross analogy I made is that Trump is the first person who’s ever had a daily colonoscopy, with the results shown to the world on a high magnification microscope. Nobody looks good seen this way. Imagine a world in which the New York Times has a headline in 1964 announcing “President Johnson celebrates Civil Rights Act by announcing ‘We’ll have those N****** voting for us for the next 200 years.'” Or imagine if the Washington Post, which had a slobbering love affair with Kennedy, instead announced weekly the number of women he’d seduced, including teenagers. That’s what we’re getting with Trump.
As just one contemporaneous example, no president ever before had to put up with the following kind of thing from that living embodiment of fecal matter, John Brennan:
A reminder to federal officials:
There is no limit on the number of individuals who can use the whistleblower statute.
If you think you were involved in unlawful activity as a result of a directive from Mr. Trump or someone doing his bidding, now is the time to report it.
— John O. Brennan (@JohnBrennan) September 28, 2019
The reality is that we have no way of comparing the virtues of Trump’s phone call to Zelenskyy with how other presidents would have handled the same type of call . . . because no other president has had spies within the White House exposing his every act to a hostile media. It is impossible to judge Trump by the standard of other presidents because the media and his political opponents (who called for his impeachment the day after his election) have never before reported on or responded to a president in the way they have with Trump.
In the podcast, I directly or indirectly referred to these links:
Fascinating little life hack, for doing percentages:
x% of y = y% of x
So, for example, if you needed to work out 4% of 75 in your head, just flip it and and do 75% of 4, which is easier.
— Ben ⧖ Stephens (@stephens_ben) March 3, 2019