I’ve known you for decades. You’re think-tankers, government officials, political journalists, and pundits. …
For a long while, I thought you were the good guys. You talked about individual liberty. Some of you identified as conservatives, others as libertarians, still others as classical liberals. None of you are outright leftists. …
You cheered my books on gay rights. (Many of you are gay.) But when I started writing critically about Islam, you went mum. All of you. You didn’t attack me in public, but you didn’t express support, either.
But that was OK.
Then Donald Trump came along. He spoke of liberty and of putting America First.
Your public rage at him — and his supporters — was instantaneous. It was visceral, full-throated, and constant.
I didn’t remember any of you getting that worked up about Barack Obama. Ever.
For a moment, at the very beginning, I didn’t quite get it. Then I got it. Of course. It was obvious.
Trump represented an existential threat to everything you had — your job security, your social status, your sumptuous lives in places like Chevy Chase, Falls Church, and Georgetown.
You knew — somehow all of you could tell instinctively — that when Trump talked about liberty, he meant it.
But you? However much you talked about liberty, at bottom you weren’t really about liberty at all — at least not the individual liberty of ordinary Americans.
What were you about? Well, for one thing, you were about the “liberty” of giant American corporations to move their factories abroad, even to Communist countries, without penalty.
For those of you who work at think tanks, this position was understandable: owners of giant corporations paid your hefty salaries.
Yes, over the decades, as a result of policies you advocated, countless working Americans lost their jobs to workers in other countries — some of them children, some of them literally slaves, all of them paid little or nothing.
Such losses, you asserted, were regrettable, but in the end everybody would benefit.
Well, look who’s benefited: The Chinese Communist Party. Carlos Slim. The Silicon Valley Billionaire Boys’ Club.
And, of course, you. Because nobody was exporting your jobs to China or Mexico. …
When the Democrats tried to sell the patently phony Russian-collusion narrative and impeachment case, some of you joined in the pile-on. Some didn’t: such matters weren’t in your wheelhouse. Besides, at least some of you had to have realized early on that it was all lies.
But none of you blew the whistle on it.
The Obama people were trying to overturn the 2016 election — a reprehensible betrayal of constitutional principles that put the United States through years of hell.
And what did you do? Even if you didn’t explicitly parrot Rachel Maddow, you nonetheless aided and abetted this coup attempt by staying silent about it while continuing to slam Trump over the trivial outrage du jour. …
Yes, Obama had been unmasked as a felon, a traitor. But you and your pals in the corridors of power in New York, Washington, and Los Angeles just kept on with the usual day-to-day Trump-bashing.
Proof of Obama’s crimes had been placed in front of all of you, and you all swept it aside without a moment’s hesitation. …
None of you cared that Obama and his people were crooks. You didn’t care that this was about the fundamental principles of the American constitutional republic.
You were just that cynical. …
One of you — a longtime friend of mine — even addressed Trump voters directly, telling us that we should be ashamed to have voted for him and ordering us not to do it again.
Sorry, but as a lifelong freelancer who’s never had to write a word at odds with my own conscience, I don’t like taking orders from people who’ve been paid generously to parrot their paymasters’ opinions.
The sheer refusal to engage with reality was breathtaking. …
If you can shrug off the transgressions of Obama and his courtiers so blithely, it’s because you’re all fellow members of the same establishment as Obama, Biden, Brennan, Comey, Clapper, and the Clintons, with the same values and priorities.
Guilt and innocence? Right and wrong? Right and Left? Who cares about such things? That’s for rubes in Flyover Country.
What matters is preserving your privileges as members of the patrician class. …
For a long time, I didn’t realize — or couldn’t realize, or perhaps even chose not to realize — that this was what I was looking at when I looked at you.
No more. The scales have fallen from my eyes, and the sight before me is a sorry thing indeed.
Yep. Follow the money.