You want Trump to shut up. I want him to keep talking.
We are not the same.
Here are some highlights from Donald Trump on Megyn Kelly’s podcast:
And here’s a live look in at his defense team:
There is always some element of risk involved when Donald Trump is given a platform. You’re banking on the number of people remembering his sheer awfulness being greater than the number of people who might be converted to his cause.
Of course, this assumes there is anyone who has until now remained undecided or neutral about Donald Trump. Maybe people who’ve been living off the grid since 2015 and only now coming to the conclusion that living off the grid kind of sucks.
Nostalgia is kind of a funny thing. We tend to look back on the past and remember only the good times, even when our life was actually in complete turmoil back then. It’s now an article of faith that the nineties were kind of a golden age, and I often find myself agreeing in retrospect, but as someone who was there I can assure you we hated it and longed for the fun eighties.
Now, what was my life actually like in the eighties? Put it this way: in 1983 I pretty much assumed nuclear war was inevitable (thanks, The Day After) and then my junior high school years were from 1985 to 1988. I probably would have considered global thermonuclear war a reprieve from grade nine.
It’s sadly common for dictatorship nostalgia to become a thing within a few years of the popular revolution, and that’s how you get former authoritarian rulers or the former authoritarian ruler’s kids being restored to power democratically.
Fast forward to 2023, and God help me, there are people looking back on the Trump Presidency with somewhat rose-tinted shades. Hey, at least inflation was low, and…stuff?
And it’s not just the MAGA red-cap crowd who feels this way. As I get older and deal with a several new crises per day in my personal life and in this newsletter, my own memories of Trump in office have faded somewhat. And, of course, it is an iron law of politics that any new Republican who gains traction - DeSantis, Vivek, Haley (pending) - is automatically deemed even worse!!!!!! than his or her predecessor, which by definition means Trump wasn’t that bad.
So, I think it’s useful to have Trump show up and remind us that, whatever qualms one may have about the Biden Presidency, the alternative is worse by several orders of magnitude.
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