Veteran Raleigh-based Publisher/Opinioneer Bernie Reeves has been a longtime regular contributor to National Review’s higher education section.
BR shares his thoughts on National Review’s unprecedented All-Out Assault against Donald Trump which was posted today (Friday).
NOTE: I am a member of an email Roundtable that Bernie “referees” (!!). These remarks were shared Friday afternoon in an e-mail and are not posted other than here…. ergo “an AgentPierce Exclusive !!
I contribute to National Review in their higher education section Phi Beta Cons, yet I have to speak up and comment on the venerable magazine’s decision to dedicate nearly an entire issue – supposedly 22 essays in the hard copy – bashing Donald Trump. I can’t recall a political publication singling out one candidate for attack in a primary race.
It is a portent the GOP is willing to commit hari kari to assure they won’t win the White House in the 2016 presidential horse race (http://www.nationalreview.com/)
In a sense, the National Review has changed from serving Bill Buckley’s conservative agenda to political terrorism. The lead bomb to destroy Trump was detonated by, of all people, Glen Beck, an extremist of the Right even Fox News could not tolerate. His diatribes border on conspiracy theories by the mentally ill, hardly the type for Bill Buckley’s button-down, Brooks Brothers crowd.
Beck says Trump supported Obama’s stimulus plan, bail-outs of the auto industry and protected the banks. Trouble is, Trump was a businessman back then, thinking about his bottom line and shareholders, not the electorate. When president, he will serve his new constituencies.
The second essay, by Erick Erickson, takes the tack that, because Trump is a newcomer to the conservative and Republican faith, he would vote for him over Hillary but will not support him in the primary. This is the weasly excuse I hear every day. As I have said: “Embrace Trump”, you will feel better.
Brent Bozell, a long-time conservative essayist, writes Trump should be judged by the phrase “does he walk with us”, coined by Richard Viguerie as a litmus test to validate genuine Republican values. But that is the rub, there is no longer a codified statement of principles. Viguerie’s list of qualifications comes from his role as a pollster, not a thinker.
Bozell says there was no one to turn to in the presidential barrel until Trump entered the race. Wait a minute, there were 15 other candidates when Trump came along, each with a vision of what being a Republican meant.
Not only is Bozell mistaken there was a wilderness of policy papers and qualified people in place before Trump, he calls him a charlatan, as if he took advantage of the absence of candidates and faked his way to popularity. In other words, to Bozell, Trump crashed the Party and worse, he was not one of us- whichever “us” that may be any given day..
Soon Trump had his own power, the people. Instead of wailing, the Republican establishment (whoever they are) acted immaturely and irrationally by not embracing Trump and molding him to the Party – not attacking their undisputed frontrunner.
Since he was leading the polls, the one disingenuous, desperate accusation in most of the essays available online was the confident prediction that nominating Trump meant Hillary was a cinch to win. How allegedly learned pundits can ignore the proof in the polls – that Trump is actually the only Republican candidate who can win the White House – demonstrates the political IQ in this county has descended to single digits.
There was an essay included by Bill Buckley from 2000, before his death in 2008. Not a good idea. He warns against demagogues (like Trump is to his detractors) but can’t help saying his finest moment was Richard Nixon taking notes from him, not the other around.
Good thing Bill Buckley is not around to witness the worst moment for National Review – conservatives employing Soviet-like tactics to assassinate Donald Trump’s character.
Editor & Publisher, Columnist
Founder, Raleigh Spy Conference