A Cure for Optimism, an Antidote to Pessimism

sunny day

A Cure for Optimism

If you got up this morning in a bright, sunny mood, you may not want to read the New York Times story As Critics Assail Trump, His Supporters Dig in Deeper. The headline tells it all. I can’t bring myself to quote or summarize it.

An Antidote to Pessimism

Meanwhile, there are indications that the Child Separation Crisis is causing Trump supporters to be read out of polite society. George Will and Steve Schmidt are telling us to vote Democratic in 2018. Young Trump Administration aides in D.C. can’t get dates. Cabinet secretaries can’t have a peaceful meal in D.C. Trump sock puppet spokespeople can’t eat in suburban Virginia restaurants.

I make it a general rule not to give adults advice on etiquette, and I’ll follow that rule here. That said, I think Jennifer Rubin has a pretty good observation this morning on the restaurant issue:

It depends on how you view the child-separation policy. If you think the decision to separate children from parents as a means of deterring other asylum seekers is simply one more policy choice, like tax cuts or negotiations with North Korea, then, yes, screaming at political opponents is inappropriate. Such conduct is contrary to the democratic notion that we do not personally destroy our political opponents but, rather, respect differences and learn to fight and perhaps compromise on another day. If, however, you think the child-separation policy is in a different class — a human rights crime, an inhumane policy for which the public was primed by efforts to dehumanize a group of people (“animals,” “infest,” etc.) — then it is both natural and appropriate for decent human beings to shame and shun the practitioners of such a policy.

This exception to the rule of polite social action should be used sparingly …

Nevertheless, it is not altogether a bad thing to show those who think they’re exempt from personal responsibility that their actions bring scorn, exclusion and rejection. If you don’t want to provoke wrath, don’t continue to work for someone whose cruel and inhumane treatment of others rivals the internment of U.S. citizens and noncitizens of Japanese descent during World War II.

Good points. And here’s a good question: Would it be a constitutionally protected act of religious expression for a Christian baker to refuse to sell Sarah Sanders a birthday cake?

It Evidently Has to Get Worse Before it Gets Better—and it Probably Will Get Worse

In the difficult-to-read New York Times article mentioned at the beginning of the post, some of the remaining, doubling-down Trump supporters mentioned the booming economy, the tax cuts, and the regulatory retreat. But there is a big trade war a-comin’. And these folks are about to get what they and their stock portfolios deserve for their devil’s bargain.