Yes, the benefit of the doubt is gone. And I agree with this:
Why on God’s good Earth would you defend any of this? Since I’ve been having this ridiculous argument all week, let me skip ahead. Yes, “Crooked Hillary,” Ted Kennedy, and a host of other liberals did bad things. Whether those bad things were analogous to this is highly debatable. But let’s just concede the point for argument’s sake. Let’s also accept the president’s grotesquely cynical and false claim that pretty much anyone in politics would have done the same thing and taken the meeting. (I for one am perfectly happy to concede that Sidney Blumenthal would happily have done equally sleazy things for his Queen-master. But I have every confidence that if some shady Russian cutouts approached, say, James Baker with a similar scheme to “incriminate” Michael Dukakis, he would become a helicopter of fists.)
But here’s the thing: Who gives a dirty rat’s ass? If you spent years — like I did, by the way — insisting that the Clintons were a corrupt affront to political decency, invoking their venal actions as a moral justification for Team Trump’s actions is the rhetorical equivalent of a remake of Waterworld set entirely in the main vat of a sewage-treatment plant, i.e., the intellectual Mother of Sh*t Shows. This is a point Ben Shapiro made well earlier this week (and which I’ve been writing about for two years now). If you want to make the case that Democrats or the media are hypocrites, whataboutism is perfectly valid (and quite fun). But if you want to say that it’s fine for Trump to do things you considered legally and morally outrageous when Hillary Clinton did them, you should either concede that you believe two wrongs make a right or you should apologize for being angry about what Clinton did. And you should be prepared to have no right to complain when the next Democrat gets into power and does the same thing.
When Trump does something good, I’ll praise him. When he does something stupid and dubious, I’ll call him on it. I am consistent in my insistence that public officials be held to the same standards as the rest of us.
I wouldn’t mind him being impeached and removed, or even prosecuted, but if either of those things happen, I’ll be incandescent in my outrage if the investigation against her is not renewed and finally done properly, so she can finally be accountable to the law. I’m still glad she lost, but I will not worship this gang of ethically challenged incompetents.
Wow, the comments sections is under attack by an army of strawmen.
Here’s what I didn’t say and what I don’t believe. I don’t believe that he is plotting with Putin against the United States. I don’t believe that he’s Hitler. I don’t believe that he is plotting to undermine democracy. I don’t believe he should be impeached (yet). I don’t even believe that he committed a crime (at least with regard to the Russian stuff). If I were as under the sway of the media as some fools fantasize, I would believe all these things.
All I (and Jonah) said is that, for months, we’ve been told by Trump supporters that any suggestion that the campaign had colluded (that is, had meetings with them to discuss how they could help elect Trump) with the Russians was “fake news.” For months, given the absence of evidence, we have given them the benefit of the doubt, despite all of the smoke, and the continuing changing stories (sometimes daily, which continues even now, with the number of attendees at the meeting continuing to grow). So now we know that we can do so no longer on this particular issue. I don’t believe this because I’ve been brainwashed by the media. This is not a position I came to from Trump hatred (though I continue to find him loathesome). I came to this rational, objective position because Trump’s idiot namesake told me that he colluded with the Russians (albeit unsuccessfully in terms of getting the desired Hillary dirt), even if he didn’t use that word.
But apparently (as with Obama) no criticism, no matter how objective, no matter how fact based, of the God King will be brooked by his acolytes. I don’t suffer in any way from Trump derangement, but apparently many of both his opponents and his supporters clearly do.
“This isn’t Watergate. This isn’t treason. And there’s still no smoking gun.”
— Michael Tracey (@mtracey) July 14, 2017
Oops, guess I shouldn’t have noted this, because according to my brilliant commenters, I’ve been brainwashed by the media (which I in fact find even more despicable than Trump).
BTW, this is why I don’t post about Trump all that much. It’s impossible to have a sane conversation about him with both his opponents and defenders.
I see that Ken continues to insult my intelligence in comments because I had and continue to have the temerity to criticize his God King in any way.