QED

We May Never See his Like Again

Greg Gutfeld is a conservative host on Fox News. He started off some years ago when Donald Trump was first elected as being something of a Trump sceptic. He has been won over. I think there are two ways to be won over, if you need be won over. First, consider Trump’s policies and his achievements.

To mention a few: lower business taxes; massive and continuing deregulation; 6.7 million new jobs created; unemployment rate down to 3.5 per cent; the lowest unemployment rate on record for African-Americans and Hispanic-Americans; real earnings up 2.5 per cent; poverty down; stock prices and home prices way up; energy sufficiency; the ISIS caliphate destroyed; the US embassy in Israel moved to Jerusalem; new trade deals negotiated with South Korea, Mexico, Canada and first-phase deals with Japan and China, with Europe and the UK to come; border security tightened; over 180 new (literalist) federal judges appointed and two supreme court justices; freeloading NATO countries heavied to pay more for their own defence; extracting the US from the flawed Iranian nuclear deal and imposing tough sanctions on Iran, opting out of the ineffective Paris (climate) Agreement designed to penalise Western industrial countries while giving those countries whose emissions are growing the fastest – China and India prominently – a free pass.

It would be possible to go on and on but my drift is clear. This is a presidency without precedent. He will go down as the most successful president ever, particularly if, as seems certain in view of the calibre of those jockeying to oppose him, he is given another four-year term. And all this, so far, while being continuously pelted with rotten eggs by the rampantly biased and dishonest media and being continually investigated for non-crimes, ending up with the current hollow impeachment trial.

The likes of him we have never seen before, unlike any previous president or political leader in the history of the world. And this provides a bridge into the second way to be won over by Trump.

He is a billionaire, the president and yet the common man. What you see is what you get. And how refreshing it is.

He gave a campaign rally in Milwaukee on January 14. Among his usual material he turned to household appliances, showers, toilets and light bulbs. He complained, as we might, about environmental rules which make life less convenient. Showers which produced too little water to wash his abundant hair properly; light bulbs which made one’s skin look orange. It was lovely, implicitly, self-deprecating stuff with the hard edge that he was relaxing pointless environmental rules which simply make life harder with no real end product. “Anybody have a new dishwasher? He asked. “I’m sorry for that,” he said, promising dishes will be beautifully clean in the future.

Greg Gutfeld played this part of Trumps’ speech on his show. “Are we good enough for him,” he queried. True, he was joking and playing to his enthusiastic Trump-supporting audience. But it is a good question.

Certainly, many people that I come into contact with would not be good enough for him if they lived in America. They whine about his character without knowing anything about him other than through the hateful filter of the ABC and other lefty media or, at best, through holier-than-thou conservative commentators who inevitably can’t praise Trump’s policies without virtue signaling their own disdain for some of his alleged peccadillos. Somehow or other I find them more distasteful than the lefties who openly despise everything about Trump and what he doing.

And where was Trump while the Democrats were engaging in their futile machinations to fit him up in the Senate trial? He wasn’t conferring desperately with his lawyers. He was at Davos reminding the assembled woke of past scares that proved to be empty, as will this one.

It’s hard to grasp the fawning which goes on when Greta Thunberg is on show. Grown men willingly berated by a sixteen-year-old schoolgirl. Hmm, think about that for a minute. Better not. She is now seventeen, by the way, so will soon exceed her use-by date. Expect a fourteen- or fifteen-year-old girl to pop up to carry the alarmists’ torch.

Some dopey reporter at Davos challenged Trump about Thunberg criticizing his policies. “How old is she,” he responded. Now use some imagination. Name any other world leader who would have the temerity to put into words what anyone of common sense thinks.

And back home, lickety-split, before you think can he can’t possibly add to the derangement of his political and media opponents he is becoming the first president to attend the March for Life in Washington DC. Cometh the need, and the need has never been greater, cometh the man.

19 comments
  • wayne.cooper

    One of the more hilarious and notable things about the media’s constant criticism of Trump is that it seems to revolve around two axes: (a) his alleged unpopularity, and (b) his alleged stupidity. He is allegedly the “most unpopular and (indeed) hated President in history” they say, without seeming to recall that Abraham Lincoln was so unpopular and truly hated that his election prompted cessation of the Southern Democratic States and a Civil War. Trump is also supposedly as stupid as a person can be, again with no reference to the Lincoln was described by his contemporaries, including “an Ape” and “the original Gorilla.” I wonder if it could be that 100 years from now Trump and Lincoln will be more generally seen to have some positive qualities in common.

  • Doubting Thomas

    I’ve been on Usenet and/or Facebook in a variety of groups for the last 25 years or so. These groups are numerically dominated by American “liberals” (in their sense of the term. Almost without exception they are tertiary-educated professionals, eg teachers, psychologists, lawyers. Again, almost without exception, like leftists everywhere, their most common trait is an almost total lack of a sense of proportion. If they like something/someone, they declare the boundless depth of their affection in the most florid, emotional terms. No fault is recognised, no criticism – however slight – is tolerated. Conversely, their contempt and rabid hatred for those whose opinion differs from theirs is awesome, indeed terrifying if anyone were to take their language literally.
    This is the more private face of modern Democratic Party. Obama was, and remains, a saint despite his demonstrated faults and failures. Hillary did no wrong because she, as the “liberal” embodiment of all feminist conceivable virtues, could not possibly do wrong.
    Trump is, to them, literally Satan personified.
    They are barking mad, and simply refuse to accept that their behaviour since Trumps election is in any way beyond the pale. Even more stupidly, they refuse to see that the precedent they are setting with this farcical impeachment nonsense will come back to bite the next Democratic President who does not control both houses. As for their corrupt prostitution of the FBI, and other government agencies, words fail me.

  • Alice Thermopolis

    Well said, Peter.

    Mark Steyn attended a Trump rally in Burlington, Vermont, in January 2016. He too came away convinced he could win the Republican nomination and the election.

    “I don’t claim to be right about everything,” he later wrote, “except when I’m very drunk at three in the morning, but I was right about Trump, and very early on.”

    https://www.steynonline.com/9993/notes-on-a-phenomenon

    “Trump has no prompters. He walks out, pulls a couple of pieces of folded paper from his pocket, and then starts talking. Somewhere in there is the germ of a stump speech, but it would bore him to do the same poll-tested focus-grouped thing night after night, so he basically riffs on whatever’s on his mind. This can lead to some odd juxtapositions: One minute he’s talking about the Iran deal, the next he detours into how Macy’s stock is in the toilet since they dumped Trump ties. But in a strange way it all hangs together: It’s both a political speech, and a simultaneous running commentary on his own campaign.

    It’s also hilarious. I’ve seen no end of really mediocre shows at the Flynn in the last quarter-century, and I would have to account this the best night’s entertainment I’ve had there with the exception of the great jazz singer Dianne Reeves a few years back. He’s way funnier than half the stand-up acts I’ve seen at the Juste pour rires comedy festival a couple of hours north in Montreal. And I can guarantee that he was funnier than any of the guys trying their hand at Trump Improv night at the Vermont Comedy Club a couple of blocks away. He has a natural comic timing.”

    “He has a natural instinct for where the comedy lies. He has a zest for the comedy of life.”

  • Doubting Thomas

    The nearest Australian analogy I can think of is the ALP and its sympathisers in the immediate aftermath of the Whitlam sacking. I know many people who will go to their graves believing that Whitlam was the latter day embodiment of Jesus Christ. As I said, utterly bereft of any sense of proportion.

  • phicul19

    I believe that they are still looking for Gough’s two stone tablets.

  • PT

    Actually, DT, the dismissal was the best thing for the “Whitlam Legend”. Without it his ramshackle government may have fallen apart within 12 months, and would certainly have been savaged in the next election even worse than it was in Dec ‘75! This way, they can pretend that “evil forces” “stuck against democracy” by “removing the elected government”! They always ignore the fact that Whitlam lost the election heavily, and yet he probably got quite a few votes because of the way the election was forced. A few have convinced themselves that Whitlam would have somehow win if he’d still held the title of Prime Minister, Keating seems to be one of these with his ridiculous “house arrest” nonsense. But the truth is that it was the dismissal that made Whitlam the “martyred PM” rather than the failed PM.

  • Stephen Due

    “The likes of him we have never seen before, unlike any previous president or political leader in the history of the world”.
    Peter! Please! This sentence is ungrammatical. In addition, it makes an exaggerated claim (about leaders in world history) that is unconvincing.
    Otherwise I agree with you about Trump. He is undoing the Progressive program as fast as he can go, and the people are loving it. We need a Donald Trump here. Morrison is proving to be a sad disappointment. Prevaricating. Directionless. Unwilling to to take a stand, even on abortion.

  • Peter Smith

    Stephen, Ungrammatical, I think not. Exaggerated, I’m shocked. Please explain with examples.

  • Doubting Thomas

    I’ll back you on the grammatical question, Peter, and I’ll also be keen to see his nomination as having been comparable to Trump. Margaret Thatcher, perhaps?

  • pgang

    Peter, with you all the way. Couldn’t believe my eyes and ears when I listened to his March for Life speech. He makes our Sco-Mo look like Gollum murmuring in the shadows about sweet nothing. Although I do accept that there is a world of difference between a party PM and the president of a republic.

    I am now determined to visit the USA within the next four years. What better time to go?

  • Stephen Due

    Peter Smith, Doubting Thomas. Gosh you guys are ganging up on me! Who is “unlike any president…”? Answer (from your sentence) “The likes of him”.
    Correct wording (Option 1): “The likes of him we have never seen before, HE IS unlike…..”.
    Correct wording (Option 2) “The likes of him we have never seen before IN any previous president….”
    And then you are actually asking me to refute your bizarre, totally unsubstantiated claim that Trump is “unlike any previous political leader in the history of the world”. You provide no evidence. Now you want evidence from me? You must be kidding! I really find it hard to believe that either of you want to be taken seriously. Sorry! No deal – as Trump would say. You are kidding me, surely?

  • Doubting Thomas

    Stephen, your option 1 needs a full stop after “before”, and a new sentence for the second phrase. Option 2 is fine, but no better than Peter’s which, imho, in the context of the informal tenor of his article, ought to be allowed a certain leeway, even if a pedant such as your very own good self, might question its grammatical correctness. (It’s bad enough that we quarrel over “political correctness”. Let’s not get all twisted about minor differences of grammatical correctness.)
    It’s axiomatic that one cannot prove a negative. You can’t reasonably expect us to prove that Trump has no predecessors such as he. If you dispute that assertion, then you need to provide the necessary evidence.
    Over to you.

  • Mohsen

    Stephen Due,
    The answer to your question, “Who is “unlike any president?” is: Him. The “him” that was mentioned in “The likes of him”!
    .
    I think Peter Smith’s sentence is grammatical! The device used in that sentence is referred to as “ellipsis’ or” reduction”. As pointed out by Doubting Thomas, you should have used period (Macquarie Dictionary indicates “period” to be the same as “full stop”!) after “before”; nevertheless, your sentence is one way for recovering what was removed by Peter Smith which was done by him for the intention of reduction.
    .
    But in fact, I think, the complete sentence which Peter Smith has reduced is this: The likes of him we have never seen before, unlike any previous president or political leader in the history of the world the likes of which we have seen before!

    I quote an example from Longman Grammar by Quirk et al:
    “The girls swam faster than expected.” What comes after conjunction “than” is the reduction of originally a full clause: The girls swam faster than it was expected that the girls would swim.

  • Doubting Thomas

    Mohsen, thank you for your explanation.
    On the question of “full stops” v “periods”, I see the latter as an Americanism and an unwelcome intrusion on Australia’s idiom. As an unreconstructed auld phart in all things grammatical, I have long detested the Macquarie Dictionary as an incompetent work of the Devil. I have in my copious records somewhere a newspaper clipping of a scathing review of the Macquarie’s 2nd Edition by David Malouf whose contempt for its very existence surpasses even mine.
    In a land where we had for many decades been well-served by the various Oxford dictionaries and others, including quite competent if not comprehensive Australian versions, in the late 70s some bureaucratic genius decided to encourage the creation of the Macquarie monstrosity.
    Those of us employed to write by any of the Commonwealth’s numerous departments were suddenly told that the Concise Oxford Dictionary was no longer to be the arbiter of correct spelling and usage. Hitherto, we were to refer to the Macquarie whose publishers seem to have enjoyed a suspiciously incestuous relationship with the Australian Government Punishing Service, the publisher of the Commonwealth Style Manual. Evidence of this close relationship could be found in the Introduction to each of the publications. On the one hand, the editors of the Macquarie acknowledged and praised the Editors of the Style Manual for their advice and cooperation. On the other, the Editors of the latest edition of the Style Manual returned the compliment. Thus, almost immediately, it became almost impossible to use words previously spelt with an -ize ending without being accused of being a closet “Yank” or worse. The Macquarie had dictated that we were to standardise on -ise, regardless of the Oxford’s presumably old-fashioned prior views on the issue, eg Latin or Greek roots or some such scholarly distinctions.
    Previously, the first of any alternate spelling listed in the Concise Oxford was to be used.
    It was ironic that the most appropriate descriptor of the Macquarie – “otiose” – was not to be found in its early Concise editions.
    The whole thing was a scandalous waste of money.

  • Mohsen

    Thanks, Doubting Thomas !

  • Stephen Due

    Doubting T. et al. Thank you for the comprehensive lesson in grammar, which I’m now trying to digest. You’ve made me nervous. I’ll keep my sentences short in future and hope for the best!

  • Stephen Due

    Trump’s most recent speeches include some beauties. The one to the Pro-Life rally a week ago was a corker. So was the speech announcing his peace plan for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which included the wonderful line “I was not elected to do small things”.
    One columnist has written that Trump is “America’s first wartime president in the culture wars”. Several commentators have likened Trump’s style to that of General Ulysses S. Grant, commander of the Union Army, of whom Abraham Lincoln said “I cannot spare this man. He fights”.

  • Geoffrey Luck

    Bravo, DT! The dictionary substitution has permeated to the lowest level – Council libraries. Not so long ago I went to look something up in the multi-volume full Oxford Dictionary in the Ku-ring-gai Council library. Gone! In its place a variety of cheesy Macquarie “dictionaries”. Where had all their Oxford volumes gone? I asked. “Oh to some charity or other – we wanted to make room for people to do personal history searches.”

    Once, at a function of the Sydney Institute at which the Editor of the Macquarie proudly announced the new edition, I tried to ask her views of the epicene pronoun, but was quickly shut down by Gerard Henderson. I am one of those pedants who cannot abide the use of “their” as a one-word-fits-all pronoun by those desperate to avoid the supposed sexism of the masculine form. As my old copy of Fowler so adroitly puts it: “Having no real function in English grammar, the word is kept alive chiefly as a more contemptuous synonym for ‘effeminate’, implying physical as well as moral sexlessness.

  • Mohsen

    Mr. Luck,
    The dictionaries are—so they say—either prescriptive or descriptive; as far as I know all major dictionaries are (they didn’t use to) descriptive (describing the language as it is used) including Macquarie’s , Merriam Webster’s, and even the OED; and dictionaries compiled for the students are prescriptive (prescribing the language as it should be used [the so-called proper usage and proper language]). Descriptive dictionaries see themselves as authorities who accurately only report on the language. Fowler’s dictionary of usage is a prescriptive one. I suspect the best references for checking the current usage status of words would be the ones produced locally.
    .
    As for “period”, while it is not as widely used in Britain and Australia as “full stop”, apparently it is accepted as standard (Collins, Chambers, The Shorter OED, the OED itself and Macquarie don’t say otherwise! [but ironically Pam Peters, one of Macquarie dictionary editors, in The Cambridge Guide to English Usage, points out that the “full stop” is the usual name in Britain, and that Australian usage echoes the British on this, while in North America (the U.S. and Canada) the mark goes by the name “period])
    .
    This is one sense of “period” by the OED (it is without any label!): The point or character that marks the end of a complete sentence; a full stop (.). Also added to a statement to emphasize a place where there is or should be a full stop, freq. (colloq.) with the implication ‘and that is all there is to say about it’, ‘and it is as simple as that’. 1609 J. Davies Holy Roode (1878) 20/2 No Commaes but thy Stripes; no Periods But thy Nailes. 1612 Brinsley Lud. Lit. 95 In reading, that he [the scholar] doe it distinctly, reading to a Period or full point, and there to stay. 1748 J. Mason Elocut. 24 A Comma stops the Voice while we may privately tell one, a Semi-colon two; a Colon three: and a Period four. 1824 L. Murray Eng. Gram. (ed. 5) I. 405 When a sentence is complete and independent‥it is marked with a Period. 1866 Mason Eng. Gram. (ed. 7) 121 Punctuation‥4 The Full stop or Period. 1934 J. O’Hara Appointment in Samarra (1935) viii. 248 ‘An unscrupulous woman can make a man— ’ ‘Period.’ 1946 Sun (Baltimore) 2 Oct. 8 (Advt.), A cigarette is supposed to give you pleasure. Period.
    .
    As an aside—and it being my personal view—I see the OED as “great but useless”. It is a useless and worthless dictionary by virtue of being multi-volume (it has 23 volumes including the addenda). A dictionary is barely useful (understanding that we all agree what “usefulness” means and how a dictionary is thought of being used and utilized!) if it is even a two-volume book! Especially considering the fact that part of that book is full of useful examples like: c 1290 Becket 2421 in S. Eng. Leg. I. 176 Þe pope ȝaf alle pardon þat þudere wolden gon, Þat men nusten in Engelonde suuych pardon non. a 1300 Cursor M. 21614 (Edin.) Þe quene wiþ hir menie [went] apon þe fridai eftirwarde Of perdun [v.rr. pardun, -doun] for to serue hir parte.

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