It's The Same Old Song: Republican Presidents Are Cuckoo
The verdict on the U.S. president seems conclusive. The Republican dashes from “one thing to another with amazing dispatch… each act of his, and each opinion expressed likely to abolish or contravene some previous act or expressed opinion.” Consistency is a word he abhors, reversing himself on foreign war, the Mexican issue and the role of Congress in his agenda.
The great minds of contemporary psychiatry share the opinion that his actions make him unstable and untrustworthy. No wonder the chattering class thinks he is “clearly insane… and insanest upon war and its supreme glories.”
While this president shuns alcohol, he is clearly “drunk on himself” says one prominent author. He ran as a Republican but acted like a progressive when the mood struck.
An apt description of Donald Trump? No, these comments were all flung at Theodore Roosevelt by his critics in the first decade of the 20th century. That would be the Theodore Roosevelt on Mount Rushmore, considered one of the top three or four presidents of the century. “The most popular human being that has ever existed in the United States,” noted a wry Mark Twain.
Yes, it’s early days to contrast the two presidents in one sentence. But it’s never too early to see the fine hand of liberal scorn when it comes to Republican presidents. In their need to feel superior, the guardians of the progressive cause have long questioned the sanity of their rivals in the most personal manner. And are not shy about employing whatever intellectual cudgel is at hand.
Here’s The Atlantic magazine on Trump last summer: “Narcissism, disagreeableness, grandiosity—a psychologist investigates how Trump’s extraordinary personality might shape his possible presidency”. (https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2016/06/the-mind-of-donald-trump/480771/) A psychologist who was going on public evidence, not any personal interview.
The treatment of 1964 Republican presidential nominee Barry Goldwater is the textbook for liberal takeout. A magazine called Fact asked “Do you believe Barry Goldwater is psychologically fit to serve as president of the United States?” This question produced the diagnoses of 1,189 psychiatrists (none of whom had ever interviewed Goldwater personally) who dismantled Lyndon Johnson’s opponent.
Reports fivethirtyeight.com: “The Republican presidential candidate was called “paranoid” and “a dangerous lunatic.” One respondent suggested that Goldwater had “a stronger identification to his mother than to his father” — fighting words in 1964 America, apparently.” Goldwater successfully sued Fact, which went out of business later
Leaving nothing to chance, the Democrats also produced TV ads that portrayed Goldwater as determined to launch a nuclear war. A little girl picking petals off a flower morphs into a nuclear explosion. (https://video.search.yahoo.com/yhs/search?fr=yhs-mozilla-001&hsimp=yhs-001&hspart=mozilla&p=Youtube+goldwater+TV+ad#id=3&vid=193d68ae200741c1a66a10383662c9a2&action=click) With issues of his mental stability as a backdrop Goldwater was subsequently crushed by LBJ, who went on to commit America to a disastrous war in Viet Nam.
Little wonder the psychiatric sneak attack survives today.
And while the left now cozies up to Ronald Reagan, his treatment at the hands of the swells in 1980 was no more subtle. Don Henley of The Eagles spoke for the McCarthyite wing of the Dems in his apocalyptic Reagan take in The End Of The Innocence: “O' beautiful, for spacious skies/ But now those skies are threatening/ They’re beating plowshares into swords/ For this tired old man that we elected king/ Armchair warriors often fail/ And we've been poisoned by these fairy tales.”
Other than getting everything wrong, it had a nice beat to dance to. (Dont get me started on “New Kid In Town”, the Eagles tribute to epic Dem failure Jimmy Carter.) Then there was the serial dismemberment of the anodyne Mormon, Mitt Romney as psycho killer of former employees.
So daily media insinuations about Trump’s mental stability are nothing new in the Democratic playbook. As John Daniel Davidson of the Federalist writes, “Progressives take it as a matter of faith that history has sides, that it is heading in a certain direction, and that it’s up to us to usher in a secular paradise.”
After the blissful eight years of The Great Equivocator Barack Obama and his “arc of moral history… bends toward justice”, the stark contrast of Trump’s dark vision of history requires particular scrutiny from The Atlantic’s dime-store Dr. Phils and the tender hearts of the MSNBC glee Club. Which are made easier when your historical point of reference is a CNN panel of seven “experts” who believe that nothing like this moment in history has ever occurred before.
Because their cause is pure, progressives can never be wrong; they’re just ahead of their time. Like their hero, progressive Democrat Woodrow Wilson, they “have high ideals and no principles”. At least, that’s the fallback consolation for progressives who have a tough time getting their heads around the idea that a majority of their countrymen think they’re the ones needing a psychiatrist’s couch.
Bruce Dowbiggin @dowbboy.is the host of the podcast The Full Count with Bruce Dowbiggin on anticanetwork.com. He’s also a regular contributor three-times-a-week to Sirius XM Canada Talks Ch. 167. A two-time winner of the Gemini Award as Canada's top television sports broadcaster, he is also the best-selling author of seven books. His website is Not The Public Broadcaster (http://www.notthepublicbroadcaster.com)