There are plenty of reasons to be concerned about President Donald Trump’s recent meeting with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un in Singapore, but none of them explain why liberals in Congress and the mainstream media have been so critical of Trump’s efforts to denuclearize one of the world’s most dangerous regimes.
Countless left-wing pundits have accused Trump of getting too cozy with Kim and providing his regime with propaganda that might help Kim stay in power. The New York Times editorial board said Trump “gushed” over North Korea. Rolling Stone wrote that “Trump played right into Kim’s hands” and that Trump “got played by a ruthless dictator.” Late-night comedians Seth Myers and Stephen Colbert spent much of their monologues mocking the June summit.
Reasonable people can disagree about whether Trump’s flowery language of the brutal Kim was prudent, or whether Trump should have spent time in his first meeting with Kim discussing North Korea’s abysmal human rights record.
But why didn’t liberals get equally outraged when President Barack Obama cut egregious deals with the murderous and radical regime in Iran? Where was Rolling Stone when Obama provided great economic relief to Cuba and its disturbing leaders? What about the billions upon billions of dollars in debt the United States accumulated during the Obama administration to help pay for Democrats’ massive bailouts and spending sprees?
China, a nation well-known for its violence against innocent citizens, ended up covering much of the debt, which we’re now paying back to the Chinese — with interest.
Less than a year ago, the left was outraged when Trump mocked Kim, a move many said put the world on the brink of war. Some in the media even questioned whether Trump was mentally fit for office. Now, Trump completely reverses course and the left accuses him of being too kind to an evil man.
No matter what Trump does with North Korea, the left will find a reason to complain about it, because the ugly truth is many liberals don’t want Trump to succeed — even if that means the denuclearization of an unstable dictatorship.
The important question isn’t whether the left wants Trump to fail — that much is obvious — it’s why liberals are so eager to prioritize the hatred of the president over the potential for a more peaceful world.
I believe the answer has little to do with national security and everything to do with the future of the left’s administrative state in Washington, D.C. Over the past several decades, proponents of increasing the national government’s power — both in the Democratic and Republican parties — have worked relentlessly to enlarge the already massive welfare state.
From expanding Medicare and creating Obamacare to the government’s takeover of much of the student-lending industry, government’s power was steadily on the rise during the Bush, Clinton, and Obama eras. While Trump’s ideology is hardly akin to GOP Sens. Rand Paul or Ted Cruz, there’s simply no denying that his administration has done more to roll back regulations and dismantle left-wing policies than any president in modern American history — perhaps even more than Ronald Reagan.
Trump has made steps to pull the United States out of the Paris Climate Accord; reduced, along with Republicans in Congress, income taxes and business taxes; conducted a successful “war on regulations”; approved multiple energy pipelines long opposed by leftist environmentalists; gutted the Obamacare individual mandate and granted significant authority to states to scale back their Medicaid programs; and appointed constitutional originalist Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, among many other free-market, pro-liberty achievements.
These actions terrify liberals, especially when you couple them with Trump’s politically incorrect statements, which, to the many on the left who have fully embraced identity politics must feel like a cannonball to the face.
Trump is systematically dismembering Obama’s legacy, and the only hope liberals have of stopping it is a “blue wave” in November and a Democrat in the White House in 2021. If Trump succeeds in denuclearizing North Korea, the likelihood of either happening would be markedly reduced, and the left knows it. That’s precisely why Michelle Wolf, Bill Maher, and other liberals have been so open in recent months about wanting America, not just Trump, to fail.
In June, comedian Michelle Wolf joked on her Netflix show, “Are you sort of hoping we don’t get peace with North Korea so you wouldn’t have to give Trump credit?”
Also in June, Maher quipped, “By the way, I’m hoping for it because one way you get rid of Trump is a crashing economy. So please, bring on the recession. Sorry if that hurts people but it’s either root for a recession or you lose your democracy.”
The left is losing major ground under Trump, and it would sacrifice just about anything to stop the bleeding — even a roaring economy and the potential for peace on the Korean peninsula.