Former Bushie speechwriter, Michael Gerson....
He (Trump) was self-absorbed, prickly, defensive, interrupting, baited by every charge yet unprepared to refute them. During his share of a 90-minute debate, he was horribly out of his depth, incapable of stringing together a coherent three-sentence case. The postmodern quality of Trump’s appeal culminated in an unbalanced rant claiming, “I also have a much better temperament than she has” — an assertion greeted by audience laughter. And Trump concluded his performance by praising himself for his own grace and restraint, during an evening that showed him to be nasty, witless and deceptive.
Okay, so Mike Gerson watched the same debate I, and 84 million others, watched. So...so far, so good. But then, Gerson closes out with a misunderstanding of what motivates Trump supporters....
Trump’s defenders will charge his critics with elitism. The great public, it is argued, gets Trump in a way that the commenting class does not. But this claim is now fully exposed. The expectation of rationality is not elitism. Coherence is not elitism. Knowledge is not elitism. Honoring character is not elitism. And those who claim this are debasing themselves, their party and their country.
I don't know if Gerson has ever taken the time to listen to ElRushbo....or not....but if he did take the time he would realize that "knowledge" is elitism, "coherence" of logic or thought is elitism, "expectation of rationality" is elitism.....for a bigly portion of those who consume conservative hate-media. And...conservative hate-media high priests...Limbaugh, Hannity, Savage, et al....over, at minimum, the past decade, have "educated" their audiences to, yes, "debase" politicians and elected-officials who communicate factual knowledge, coherency and seem rational.
Conservatism, just in general, has been "exposed" as but a faith-based ideology because there has never been any empirical evidence that proves conservative policies have ever worked successfully, or as advertised, for the People. For example: Trickle down economics has never worked and global climate change is, obviously, not a "hoax". Candidate Trump is simply the bizarro embodiment of a Republican Party which has been debasing knowledge, coherence and rationality for a very long time. Funny that Gerson has only noticed this just recently. Or, you know, not.
Anyway, that's Gerson's take...the GOP "establishment" take, if you will. Gerson recognizes the unacceptability of Donald Trump as president, yet has no recollection of the fact that his GOP has been debasing knowledge, coherency and rationality for the past 25 years.
And then there is the enthusiastic-for-Trump Republicans....
"If I were Donald Trump I wouldn't participate in another debate unless I was promised that a journalist would act like a journalist and not an incorrect, ignorant fact checker," Rudy Giuliani said after Monday's debate between Trump and Hillary Clinton.
Here, you see a representative of those Republicans Gerson criticized in his piece. Giuliani represents those conservatives who debase knowledge, coherency and rationality....for political gain. Giuliani, not Gerson, represents the conservative faith-basers who, primarily, defend and support Donald. Giuliani represents those who have been "educated" by people like Limbaugh and Hannity...that "elitist" knowledge, rationality and coherency are vices to be avoided, and countered, at all times....if the conservative movement, or the GOP, is threatened by them.
In the end, what we have on the Party of Lincoln side is two faith-based approaches to the GOP nominee. The one faith-based approach, represented by Gerson, denies the historic reality of the Republican Party. Gerson purposely avoids mentioning anything about the fact-free, anti-science policies of elected-Republicans for the past 25 years. The, apparently, unimportant-to-mention rejections of...knowledge, coherency and rationality...by an entire political party.
Giuliani represents those faith-based Republican voters who enthusiastically, and with prejudice, reject knowledge, coherency and rationality out of hand....and are as proud as they can be, as Trump demonstrated Monday night, to refer to those Americans who think our political leaders should be reasonable, coherent and knowledgeable as politically correct elitists who are destroying the nation with all their science-y stuff.
In other words....when we're discussing today's GOP....it's faith-based....all the way down.
This year's general election isn't exactly a political exercise. Instead, as far as the GOP side goes, this year's presidential contest is a religious exercise. Knowledge, rationality and coherency have no place in a religious exercise. Faith-alone...suffices.
I may be mistaken.....but I still trust that 50 +1% of the U.S. electorate places value in things like being rational, being knowledgeable and being able to speak coherently when addressing the electorate.....like Madame President Clinton demonstrated very convincingly on Monday night.