This is my quick reply to a member of my discussion group.
I think your comparison to an effective doctor whom you would want even if he is a jerk is kind of what I have been trying to say, if less well.
The first thing I ask people apoplectic about Trump – a question almost none are able to answer – is this:
“Which would you vote for: A) a President with a wonderful personality who is taking your country down. Or B), a President with an irascible, jarring character, who is saving it?”
They stop. Look at me flustered, and then try to slip out of the question.
Sad to say, most people suffering from TDS can’t answer because they have never thought about it.
If we think of a box-graph where right is on the right side of the box, and left is on the left, and imagine America starting at the bottom right in 1776 with its Declaration of Independence, then its Constitution in 1787 – both of which laid out guiding principles for a conservative-style classical liberalism for the entire Western world, I think America, like Canada, and all other Western democracies has been moving in a Zig-Zag fashion upward to the left hand top corner ever since.
The Zags by such as Eisenhower, Nixon, and Reagan, get offset by the larger leftward Zigs of such as Roosevelt, Clinton, Carter, and now Biden [I have left out a lot of Zigs and Zags].
My concern is the Zig-Zag direction of this process, leaning to the left upper corner. So I say to so many who can’t see this: “Take your eye off the ball. It isn’t telling us much, because the whole field is moving to the left.”
That is why I have easily overlooked Trump’s character faults. Because he has been moving the whole field back to the right. Of his fiscal/economic moves, foreign policy gutsiness, and so many other moves, his biggest and most enduring legacy is his many court appointments at the local level and especially on the SC.
I believe historians of the future commenting on efforts to move the whole field back to the right will applaud a great many of his moves as of historical importance
Some of them may even argue that without his brassy, jarring inelegant character, he could never had done it. Why? Because the elegant political class in the coastal regions had fallen into such disrepute among the almost 70 million “deplorables” that they turned off politics completely, having lost all hope.
Those citizens were drop-outs until brassy, tell-it-like-it-is Trump came along and woke them up again with his direct Tweets to them, his unscripted speeches (and yes, frequent untruths, exaggerations – what Huck Finn called “Stretchers”). I don’t think as a polished, Ivy-league style man he would have got their attention. It took a politician whom they recognized as “one of them.” They got excited by his frank truth-telling, even when he wandered into untruth. And their previously dormant patriotic, flag-hugging, freedom-loving feelings for a country that they had felt was slipping away from them were revived. They loved feeling those feelings again. And they loved the man who made them feel that way.