February 8 2017
Just want to make sure you don't miss Joseph Epstein's Wall Street Journal essay on Trump Trauma, "a sickness that makes sufferers feel terribly good about themselves." Arguably our greatest living essayist, Mr. Epstein outdoes himself:
The first thing the Traumatics tend to attack is Mr. Trump’s looks. “Why is he orange?” an old friend asks over lunch. “I don’t get it.” Or there is his hair. On the New York Review of Books website, Northwestern’s Garry Wills expatiated upon these hirsutical matters: “Does he handle its upkeep all by himself? Has he any kind of regular barber? Does he have some secret and specializing artist who can invent such an artifact?” Mr. Wills came to no satisfying conclusions.
Donald Trump is of course a gift that the gods have bestowed on the left-wing press. He allows it—daily, hourly—to do what it most enjoys to do: express outrage. He allows editors of the Nation and New Republic the frisson of imagining they are living in Germany in 1933. The New Yorker, which my friend Hilton Kramer once called the Nation in Ralph Lauren clothes, has joined the gang. Here are the headlines for its online postings this past Saturday: “Fear and Loathing in Trump’s America,” “The Deep Denialism of Donald Trump,” “From ‘Drain the Swamp’ to Government Sachs,” “Why Trump’s ‘America First’ Policy Is Doomed to Fail,” “For the Protesters at Standing Rock, It’s Back to Pipeline Purgatory,” and “Teaching Southern and Black History Under Trump.”
Trump Traumatics can turn for further reinforcement of their views to the late night talk-show hosts, those noted choir directors Jimmy Kimmel,Stephen Colbert,Jimmy Fallon,Seth Meyers,Bill Maher and Conan O’Brien. On “Saturday Night Live” Alec Baldwin has found a new career doing Trump imitations, and threatens to become to Mr. Trump what Vaughn Meader was to John F. Kennedy.
Out of power, progressives take to the streets. (Conservatives tend to sulk: The only ones I know who march are the pro-lifers.) The anti-Trumpers of the left have found in nearly every executive order, cabinet appointment or Supreme Court nomination an excuse for refreshing out-of-door politics.
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Trump Trauma is a disease with a known cause but no known cure. But Trump Traumatics don’t want treatment. The condition makes those in its grip feel terribly good about themselves, on the right side of things, above all filled with virtue. Like jogging, treadmills, triathlons, Trump Trauma stimulates the release of endorphins. Hard to find all that at such low cost anywhere else.