How’s Trump Doing?

The president is doing as well as I expected. I think he’s doing fine. I am not disappointed.

Comments at Steve Sailer:

* A president can’t get much done without some support in Congress and inside government offices. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that this president has support just because the Republican party has majorities in both houses. He doesn’t.

Remember: He won the nomination against the wishes of those in power in “his/our” party. They would be almost as happy as the Left to see him fail or go.

He needs to somehow help, where he can, to get Trumpists elected to Congress in 2018. (And Trumpists need to step up and run for Republican nominations for those upcoming congressional races.) He also needs to remind himself every day that his enemies wear both letters, D and R.

With or without party elite support, President Trump needs to get back to the basics of why we voted for him, in order of importance:

1) Immigration: For we his supporters — we who are more numerous than media and social norms will allow to be heard — for us the past half-century has been a disaster. For President Donald J. Trump to truly accomplish what he has been chosen by history to do, he must reverse the demographic trends that have been changing the United States since The Immigration Act of 1965.

Trump needs to realize that his people and his nation are engaged in an existential struggle to assert the same right to existence that pretty much every other nation of people on Earth takes for granted: namely, the right to be who we are, without shame or doubt, distinct from others.

If he and we do not assert this right, we will suffer the same fate as a herd of sheep in a world of wolves, for every other people are doing what is best for their posterity. Only our kind holds onto relativistic illustions.

2) Trade, or as I like to call it, Imports = Cheap Foreign Labor: Trump is now president because he won votes from Americans in places like Michigan, where good jobs were exported to foreign countries. Part of Donald Trump’s support comes from the victims of over-importation of foreign goods. He knows this. This was the part of his campaign strategy that everyone else overlooked. Well, Donald, you need to focus on those good, American workers who put you in the White House. You need to hang tough on imports. If you can do this, those folks will vote for you again in 2020.

3) Foreign entanglements: Here is a conundrum. So far, we Trump voters kind of like Donald’s give ‘em hell attitude and realpolitik, but we see him continuing America’s expensive “Invade the World” strategy. He needs to show us that defending the likes of South Korea and Israel is really in our national interest. Otherwise, he needs to show us that he is just working with this existing order in the most advantageous way possible.

4) PC culture and the Racist Campaign Against White Americans: Trump needs to continue to insert tweets and other things often enough to let us know he still cares about his own kind. This includes continued support for cops, border patrol, etc. Keep being Donald Trump. Don’t listen to those who would tell you to stop. Be yourself. You won, remember?

* Apparently Trump’s poll numbers have improved after his first world trip, something I find remarkable since from the European perspective it seems to have been a complete and unprecedented disaster. To his credit Trump is certainly “putting America first”. Whether it is really in America’s long term interest to buddy up to Saudi Arabia and alienate the Europeans is a different question. The funny thing is that Trump is actually executing the pivot towards Asia that the Obama team kept talking about but couldn’t really pull off.

Trump’s foreign policy moves make no sense if he were really a “white nationalist” but make a lot of sense if he and his team are cynical realists who see the world this way:

1. China is clearly the next world power.
2. Europe is in terminal decline, and the EU is doomed to failure
3. Russia will remain a strong regional player but has no hope of regaining superpower status and becoming an equal player with China and the US.
4. China’s Achilles heel is energy. Controlling energy resources will keep the US dominant for the foreseeable future.

If you accept those premises than Trump’s seemingly crazy actions all makes sense. It makes sense to cozy up to Saudi Arabia and Russia in order to keep them out of Chinese orbit. It also makes sense to cut Europe loose in order to strengthen ties with Russia.. If you need Erdogan to help keep order in the Middle East and watch Saudi Arabia’s flank, then you make friends with Erdogan and let him continue to blackmail Europeans with refugees and to fund Islamic cells throughout Germany.

This suggests Trump has really been a great power conservative all along, which is probably why the military seems to be solidly behind him. If true then Trump is going to disappoint idealists – both leftists who want the US to stand for human rights and “progressive” values, as well as white nationalists and fundamentalist Christians who want the US to stand up for “traditional” values.

* I think it’s becoming clear that Trump is not the great managerial force he claimed to be during the campaign. The perceived chaos in the WH scares traditional GOPers who are always on edge with the media. It causes them to retreat even more.

Trump needs to allow skilled advisors to take greater reins in his administration. That would mean jettisoning his son-in-law and allowing Bannon to reassert control. The Sessions/Miller/Bannon wing have been consistent and have delivered results. Their one perceived misstep, the travel ban, really wasn’t one.

* Trump needs to firmly internalize the fact that the MSM will screech every day of his administration about something or other.

The MSM will screech on the beaches, they will screech on the landing grounds, they will screech in the fields and in the streets, they will screech in the hills; they will never surrender.

Once he admits this to himself, he can stop trying to make them like him.

Most importantly, when he is planning something, the strategy discussion will be “what do we do when they screech about this,” rather than “how can we play this so the media won’t screech about it?”

Yes, there are a few things the MSM won’t screech about, but if they don’t screech about Trump-move A, they will find an imaginary flea of an issue to screech about instead.

I recommend Trump specifically start referring to MSM reactions as “screeching”. It’s a pithy Trump-style label.

* Trump is going slowly from being the hunted to being the hunter. I think we will look back at the Comey firing as the beginning of the end of the soft coup. Both Brennan and Clapper have washed their hands. The Democrats are still throwing rocks but are rhetorically backing away from impeachment knowing that is a loser. Pretty soon we will see the very public frog marching of culprits, both in the government and the press, who were smoked out by a combination of Trump Trolling and counter espionage. There is still danger to Trump because of the uncontrollably of the Special Counsel but it is now a problem for Democrats tied to the past administration as well, probably even more so. Susan Rice, Loretta Lynch, Hillary Clinton, and the rest might finally get their rewards, not to mention their boss who so skillfully insulated himself by using them as foils.

The Russians were a good straw man but by throwing false allegations as a way of smearing Trump means that the Democrats have done their worst and they will be no further real harm other than General Flynn’s scalp. In the big picture, he is quite expendable. In fact, by inadvertently stumbling into the minefield first, Flynn probably saved a lot more casualties within the Trump administration.

* Not one single person who believed in the Trump campaign should be satisfied with his performance. You ought to be infuriated. You ought to be leading the charge to remove him from office. Why? Because he stole our last chance. We had one, final opportunity to change the system from within. We organized, we networked, we campaigned, we gave money, we voted—I know I and many of you as well did literally everything we could to drag Trump over goal line because we understood what was at stake in this election. And against all odds, we did it. We actually won. It never ceases to fill my heart with pride and hope when I think about what we accomplished on November 8th. On that fine day, the Nationalists actually defeated the Deep State and the Globalist cabal. Did you have tears in your eyes at 2 AM when President Elect Trump appeared on television? I know I did. I still do.

But then our candidate cucked out on us. It was not even 24 hours before he said that he “did not want to hurt” Hillary Clinton and was therefore backing off his promise to investigate her. This is literally unsupportable. Anyone with an accurate sense of law and justice knows that it would not be at all hyperbolic to say that Hillary Clinton’s head belongs on a pike in front of the White House. The state has not only the right but the duty to prosecute crimes such as hers, especially when the head of that state wishes to be known as the “law and order president.” To simply let her off the hook is not magnanimity but dereliction of duty, and this cannot be tolerated. But in the afterglow of the election, we were all too willing to interpret Trump using the hermeneutic of 4D chess. “He just needs to play it safe until he consolidates his power,” we thought. “Then he’ll throw the book at her.”
Sadly, that situation has still not been remedied, and it was only the first in a long line of Trumpian cuck-outs. I won’t belabor the point by going through the whole litany, but suffice it to say that the hermeneutic of 4D chess died an ignoble death the moment the 59 cruise missiles flew at Syria. That was a crushing blow to all hope that Trump would be a sane, nationalist leader. It was also outrageous, incompetent, criminal, and deeply immoral. Now add to that the hundred-billion dollar arms deal with the despicable House of Saud. Add to that the fact that not one, not two, but three carrier groups (a significant fraction of the entire US Navy) have been sent to menace North Korea, who simply laughs it off. I am imagining at this moment a parody of the old “this is your brain in drugs” public service announcements. It begins with an aerial shot of the Pentagon and the voice-over saying, “This is fecklessness and corruption.” Then it cuts to a video of Trump swinging swords with Saudis and the voice-over saying, “This is fecklessness and corruption on steroids.”

Our situation, at the moment, is dire. If we are to have any hope of salvaging the opportunity afforded by the Trump presidency, the effort cannot be left up to Trump. It is in ourselves, the captains of the True Right, whom we must repose confidence. We won the previous battle and we can win this one as well.

One is not thinking politically unless he has a clearly definable goal and the reasonable means of attaining it. The goal must be to take over the Trump presidency. Not to “support the president,” but to make Trump our bitch and force him to do what we elected him for. The means of attaining it is for the “Deplorables” (God I hate that word) to rise up with one voice and let Trump know that he’s on notice. The expression of that voice must be a primary challenger who will run against Trump from the Right, and congressional and local candidates who will run on the Trump platform but actually mean it. Their message should be very simple: “I mean what Trump says. I believe in it, but I was let down. He isn’t doing it, I will.”

We’ve already seen that this approach would work. It is the only thing that will work; it is the right thing to do; and it’s our next, best hope.

* Trump got himself a little bit of breathing room with his “big trip” away from the terrible press around the Comey sacking, the appointment of Mueller as special counsel, and the mishandled meeting with the Russians. It’s hard to tell, however, how much of this reprieve was just because of fewer opportunities for either Trump himself to commit another gaffe, or maybe possibly one or several people on his staff less able to leak something to the press (it could be possible, if anyone in the White House had enough sense, that the trip provided an opportunity to identify leakers: see if a source drops off from anyone on the trip being less willing to chance things to overseas communications).

(As far as the supposed falling out with Merkel, et al, on the trip, a couple things to keep in mind are (1) Merkel has an election to deal with this year, so some of what she says and does is for domestic consumption; and (2) Trump has been, in this and likely many other ways, accelerating trends that would have been coming anyway. 25 years after the end of the Cold War and the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the U.S. has much less reason to be interested in NATO, given that the enemy it was established to face no longer exists and its successor is a paltry military threat to the rest of Europe, and the fact that the major European members of NATO show no interest in protecting themselves from the actual threat posed by mass Muslim and African immigration.)

Now that Trump and his camp are back in Washington, and there’s talk of a “shake-up,” we will have to see what happens in the next couple of weeks. The big question mark with this presidency has always been Trump’s ability and character, and that was clear even as far back as the campaign, when he would regularly drag his campaign off into the weeds with one or another provocative public statement or controversy. It seems clear that he needs to change at least in some respect, even if to the minimal degree of appointing a few key core staffers whom he will listen to when they tell him “no” about something, whom he won’t publicly cut the legs out from under, who are able to do the heavy lifting he either can’t or won’t, and who want the job. The problem is still that probably anyone with the competence and ability to get this presidency (and this President) on a sounder footing who isn’t already working there probably already has a decent job, and probably isn’t interested in what has come to look like a toxic work environment under a toxic boss that is likely to leave their career and reputation damaged (and likely with both terrible hours and a government-level salary to boot, not to mention an ongoing Justice Department investigation that has everyone lawyering up). Somebody needs to be there to tell him to STFU, stop with the off-message tweeting, the weird and inappropriate statements to foreign dignitaries, etc. Hopefully, maybe, the special counsel investigation will have lawyers necessarily taking charge of the communications to some degree, so it might be a blessing in disguise.

Politically, Trump is going to have to deliver something to his base, probably on immigration, this year, in order to avoid the Democrats taking over at least one house of Congress (which will kill any hope of legislating anything stone dead and will open up the floodgates of investigations). I can’t imagine how anyone who watches the immigration issue didn’t have steam coming out of their ears last week with the announcement of the increase in refugee admissions by the State Department this year. Nate Silver last week or so at Fivethirtyeight wrote up some poll findings that Trump’s base was softening, mostly by a shift of “enthusiastic support” towards “somewhat support,” and I have to see that as failures to deliver and stumbles on issues like immigration (which has been the core of Trump’s “enthusiastic support” from the beginning). If his base shrinks or loses interest significantly as the midterms approach and Republicans in Congress and establishment conservatism feel the leash slackening, Trump will have some major problems.

Bottom line: still Flight 93, the cockpit was breached, but still not clear whether the guy in the seat can fly the plane.

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see My work has been followed by the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (
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