© 2024 Blaze Media LLC. All rights reserved.
David French, the man for our season
Andrii Zorii/Getty Images

David French, the man for our season

While real-world ruin lurks all over the map, newspaper columnists and social media spin toddler tales about mean Republicans not being nice.

Ideology and reality-focused debate aren’t dead; they’re just hiding behind a deliberately manufactured cloud of rhetorical flak.

Consider the deep thoughts of David French, a sentence that I type up in the spirit of a cat clearing a hairball. In a recent diatribe against “MAGA Man,” French went on at great length about the way Donald Trump’s bad personality rubbed itself onto Rudy Giuliani’s bad personality, producing a worse personality:

A MAGA Man such as Giuliani supplements his lies with rage. To watch him pushing Trump’s election lies was to watch a man become unglued with anger. The rage merged with the lie. The rage helped make the lie stick.

And so on, like a pop psychology article from Woman’s Day in 1974. “Know Your Sagittarius and His Emotional Triggers,” by relationship columnist David French.

Go look at the list of David French column headlines at the New York Times:

  • “Why Fundamentalists Love Trump”
  • “An Old Hate Cracks Open on the New Right”
  • “Love Can Win Trump the Nomination. It Will Take Hate to Win Back the White House”
  • “‘MAGA Mike Johnson’ and Our Broken Christian Politics”

And my personal favorite: “House Republicans Need to Grow Up.”

Republicans are bad, Republicans are bad, Republicans are bad.

What’s the point of the act? You know the point.

Federal debt is growing explosively, leaping from $33 trillion to $34 trillion in a matter of a few months. The national debt clock nears the moment when the numbers spin so quickly they blur. The war in Ukraine is trending from a lost cause to a disastrous cause, after so profound a sacrifice of young men in that beleaguered country that the average age of a Ukrainian soldier now hovers around 43.

And a commentary in the Wall Street Journal last week pointed to the warning behind the Houthi war on shipping in the Red Sea: the growing inability of the U.S. Navy, long the world’s guarantor of free and open global ocean commerce, to provide credible and consistent deterrence. Our near-trillion-dollar military can’t produce peace through strength, and the world notices.

Add your own items to the list — it isn’t like we have a shortage of crises.

While real-world ruin lurks all over the map, the news and social media spin toddler tales about mean Republicans not being nice. The news media is an obfuscatory rhetorical empire that makes noise to cover for the waning political empire, obscuring crisis with personality journalism. Is Mike Johnson a true Christian?

We’re not going to solve any of our real-world problems because we’re only going to talk at the edges of them, in a manufactured narrative that focuses on made-up stories to take space and oxygen from the real ones.

Trump, Trump, Trump, Trump, Trump. Insurrection!

The news functions like wallpaper over a stain. Why did the United States fight the Taliban for 20 years only to leave the Taliban in charge of Afghanistan and even more powerful than it was in 2001?

MAGA very mean, sources reveal.

Where the cover fails, the lying appears. National Security Council spokesman John Kirby recently ridiculed the “fallacy” and the “farce” that the American military “left a bunch of weapons in Afghanistan.” You can watch video of Taliban pilots crashing a U.S. military helicopter, but remember that the video only appears to depict reality because John Kirby says we didn't leave it there.

The failures of discourse become failures of action; the inability to speak clearly on a foundation of defensible fact becomes stupid and reckless action.

And so the Colorado Supreme Court convenes itself as a star chamber, the panel that has the authority to decide who may be permitted to become the president of the United States, and builds its pretend decision on the farcical report of the January 6 committee. The dumb legislative branch performance becomes a dumb judicial performance, compounding an absurd narrative with an absurd order, with covering fire from an empty news media.

A justice of that court, Carlos Samour, pivoted to reality in a dissenting opinion that touched bedrock. The decision by the majority of the Colorado Supreme Court, he wrote,

sanctions these makeshift proceedings employed by the district court below — which lacked basic discovery, the ability to subpoena documents and compel witnesses, workable timeframes to adequately investigate and develop defenses, and the opportunity for a fair trial — to adjudicate a federal constitutional claim (a complicated one at that) masquerading as a run-of-the-mill state Election Code claim.

It was, Samour concluded, a choice that “flies in the face of the due process doctrine.”

But Samour’s opinion comes to us like a ghost from a dead world, speaking of legal standards and procedural rules in a world of personality-focused babbling. MAGA is mean and weird, declares top Colorado court. They all, like, insurrectioned and stuff. Real trial not needed.

We have no institutions that are performing the substance of their roles and no institutions that respond to the inputs that once steered them. If you doubt the brokenness of America’s institutional compasses, go read David French.

Want to leave a tip?

We answer to you. Help keep our content free of advertisers and big tech censorship by leaving a tip today.
Want to join the conversation?
Already a subscriber?