Instead the column was a weird attempt by Podhoretz to link Trump to the mob with a hint of weirdness with lawyer Ray Cohn. The Sinatra angle, though, is worth pursuing. But of course not for the reason Podhoretz gave.
For that we must turn to Camille Paglia in March:
Nevertheless, Trump’s fearless candor and brash energy feel like a great gust of fresh air, sweeping the tedious clichés and constant guilt-tripping of political correctness out to sea. Unlike Hillary Clinton, whose every word and policy statement on the campaign trail are spoon-fed to her by a giant paid staff and army of shadowy advisors, Trump is his own man, with a steely “damn the torpedoes” attitude. He has a swaggering retro machismo that will give hives to the Steinem cabal. He lives large, with the urban flash and bling of a Frank Sinatra. But Trump is a workaholic who doesn't drink and who has an interesting penchant for sophisticated, strong-willed European women.Now that is a starting point only. Trump as Sinatra falls short because they are of two different worlds. One was a saloon singer (his words), the other a developer. They learned to play the press, sure, and of course between them they had seven marriages, plus countless other wives. Sinatra was even arrested for criminal adultery in the 1930s when he dallied with the wrong man's wife. But while Sinatra's image may have helped shape a teenage Trump, the influence in no way compares to Trump's healthy relationship with his own father.
What Trump represents in this election is testosterone, a substance more maligned than heroin in modern society. About a half century ago feminists outlawed testosterone, which they blamed for war, crime, and an unfair society.
Gun control passed in 1968. Car engines shrank. Hats disappeared. Men dressed more and more casual. Trump soldiered on. He did manly things like building hotels while dressed like a businessman. Casual Friday is when he wears a two-piece suit instead of three.
America's decline in masculinity was confined largely to urban settings with their metrosexuals. Europe was worse. And after two generations of the emasculation of society we are paying for it. Muslim men invaded Germany and raped their women, and the Germans did nothing. In fact, they aided and abetted in the coverup. The Muslims are bringing testosterone. And guess what? The world needs testosterone.
However, the good news is the United States still has an ample supply of testosterone. Men in this country are not all Bruce Jenners driven by their overpowering wives to become Caitlyn. On 9/11 the heroes were those firemen, policemen, paramedics, and transit authority workers who went inside the burning buildings to save civilian lives. Yes, there were women working alongside them. But the image was masculine.
And then the next day, there were the hardhats working in the cellar of Ground Zero and raising the American flag over the ruble. Who else does that? Who else defiantly raises the flag after an enemy has destroyed the heart of their city? But there they were.
After eight years of President Kanye West mocking his country, apologizing for our exceptionalism, and giving nukes to his Muslim buddies in Iran,
Americans have had enough.
They want adult leadership. Preferably male. But a Margaret Thatcher or Golda Meir are perfectly acceptable. Between them, they led their nations to success in three wars.
But Hillary is not Thatcher or Meir. Hillary is a weak woman. She is a hippie. She is of the privileged class. She is sneaky and greedy like Barack Obama, who as president of the choom club bogarted that joint, my friend.
Trump is a teetotaling, non-smoker who never did drugs. His sober approach as commander-in-chief will be a tonic to much of what ails the world.
Sinatra versus the hippie. I remember when Sinatra at 75 threatened to spank that harpy Sinead O'Connor for ripping the pope's picture on national TV. She has her problems, though. So does Hillary. Her 40-year marriage left her humiliated and abused. Obama schlonged her in 2008. Now she heads eyes downcast toward another humiliation on November 8.
Trump's masculinity stands in contrast to Obama's passivity. Obama likes to talk about being on the right side of history. Trump's plan is to make history An overwhelming majority of Americans sense that now, nearly a year after he entered the race. It scares the hippies and the privileged right-wingers. But it excites most people.
Maybe it is a longing for the past, but more likely a fear for the future. We are not that far from being Merkelized.
Anyway, if Podhoretz and his fellow Never Trump pundits ever get off their butt hurt, their insights may be useful again. Lord knows we need them too.
Coming in June -- "Trump the Press: Don Surber's take on how the pundits blew the 2016 Republican race."