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Tuesday, May 23, 2017

What a DC conservative is worth

Megan McArdle is a Bloomberg View columnist who fancies herself as a conservative. She wrote for the Daily Beast, Newsweek, the Atlantic and the Economist, which is a reminder that I could call myself a millionaire, but my wallet and bank account would belie that.

She wrote: "What a Conservative Sees From Inside Trump's Washington."

Cue the Hee Haw Gospel Quartet.

From McArdle:
Right-leaning writers are hearing a lot of such accusations these days, even those who never go to cocktail parties, and whose opposition to Trump has cost them readers and opportunities. And yet it’s easy to see where these accusations come from: Washington does tend to blunt the sharper ideological edges of conservatives and libertarians who spend much time here. That doesn’t necessarily happen because their values crumble toward the establishment consensus. It happens because their perspective changes. Certain things about Washington are visible only up close.
Oh, poor thing. She does not socialize with -- shudder -- liberals and yet we people out yonder accuse her of that.

And then she wrote:
Consider the endless debates over last week’s series of leaks. Washington conservatives read the news stories too. But for connected conservatives in DC, the media isn’t the only source of information about this administration. I’d venture to say that most of them have by now heard at least one or two amazing stories attesting to the emerging conventional wisdom: that the president either can’t, or refuses to, follow any kind of policy discussion for more than a few minutes; that the president will not be told no, or corrected about anything, forcing his staff to take their concerns to the media if they want to get his attention; that the infighting within the West Wing is unprecedentedly vicious, and that those sort of failures always stem from the top; and that his own hand-picked staffers “have no respect for him, indeed they seem to palpitate with contempt for him.” They hear these things from conservatives, including people who were Trump supporters or at least, Trump-neutral. They know these folks. They know, to their sorrow, that these people are telling the truth.
Hmm. She hears things, even though she is a social hermit, hermetically sealed in her office, churning out 181-word paragraphs. As we used to say in the Time When We Had Manual Typewriters: hit the damned return, lady.

So unlike conservatives outside Washington, "connected conservatives in DC" have access to other information that is damning about President Trump, and which happens to confirm all the media information fed the rest of us.

She would have us believe that suddenly, after a career built on trust -- after building an empire by annealing talented people to him -- President Trump is hand-picking staffers who “have no respect for him, indeed they seem to palpitate with contempt for him.”

I am not quite sure whom McArdle quotes. Maybe if she trusted her readers enough to disclose something other than an unattributed quote, for example the name of her informant, we might believe her.

And if she had shown any support for Donald Trump last year, we might believe her.

And if she offered us something other than the liberal stereotype of President Trump, we might believe her.

But what she sees -- and I believe her -- is a Washington Establishment with the knives out for the outsider who wants to drain the swamp.

Republicans slow-walked his nominees -- or more accurately, allowed Democrats to slow-walk nominees without consequence -- and have shelved his domestic programs just to show him who is boss. Like the Never Trumpers in the media, they are willing to tear the nation apart just so they can show who owns the Republican Party.

McArdle ended her column: "Are conservatives in Washington missing something through their myopia? Undoubtedly; that’s how they missed the rise of Trump, after all. But the folks outside of Washington are missing things too. The two sides can surely find some better way to share information than shouting past each other."


We won, you lost. Now get lost. 

On November 8, 2016, the American people said, "Trump the Establishment!"

Now read the book that explains how and why the press missed this historic election.

It is available on Kindle, and in paperback.

And then read the original, "Trump the Press," which chronicled and mocked how the media missed Trump's nomination.

It is available on Kindle, and in paperback

Autographed copies of both books are available by writing me at

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  1. As to "the president either can’t, or refuses to, follow any kind of policy discussion for more than a few minutes", may I direct your attention to Scott Adams "Dilbert" blog:

    Sounds like a "Real President", to me.

    1. I read that Adams post last night. It is absolutely correct. To make it easier to get to it: Click here

  2. CEO's rarely get into the weeds on policy - they delegate.

  3. When you have a nice comfortable life of producing agreeable squishy fodder for Trump loathing opinionated milquetoast liberal rags like the Economist ( to which I subscribed for years when it had an editor of intelligence and quality 20 years ago), how shocking an aggressive self assured the barbarian Trump in power must seem. Obama and Clinton held long dithering meetings about everything usually resolved in Obama case by Jarret, who usually advised more golf, or in Clinton's case, some friendly staffer filled the void by ordering more pizza. Trumps problems if he really has any are not with staffers but with the Republicans who have become comfortable lounging on sofas of Bernanke printed cash and do not want to get up.
    Trump showed he has ability to make things happen in this Mid East trip which is why the media is ignoring it. Perhaps he can now make more happen here when he returns. Megan will still not be happy though. She is losing readers, her real complaint, and doesn't know how to fix her problem. A woman adrift.

  4. That woman is about as useless as rubber lips on a woodpecker. - Elric

    1. That's a good one. I'm going to steal it and don't say I can't. When I was growing up, there was a stubby, lone tree in the open field next to our house. It was the domain of a very active woodpecker, who used to go rat-a-tat-tat, rat-a-tat-tat every day every summer. I spent many hours looking out the window, fascinated as I watched him at work on that tree.

    2. Go right ahead. I stole it from Earl Pitts: Uhmerikun. - Elric

  5. WHAT????? Washingtonians listening to and spreading gossip and rumors? The HORROR!! The horror...

  6. Other comments on McArdle discussed here:

  7. Connected conservatives in DC. Only in their minds. They are Both disconnected and not conservative.

  8. Never heard of her, but I'm assuming she's on the same cocktail circuit as the 'Weakly Standard' crew. She needs to visit America!

  9. "As we used to say in the Time When We Had Manual Typewriters: hit the damned return, lady."

    What?! After the typewriter's carriage just called her a "ding-a-ling"? Never!

  10. The faculty loungers vs the operational. Trump has spent a life time getting the facts and making decisions. He likely has little patience for the drama queen academic presentations that are written like a mystery novel.

    Or we can flip over to the "modern journalists" who can't comprehend the idea of giving the most relevant facts at the top, the old inverted pyramid. Every news report has to read like a tear-jerking short story.