Editorial by Political Arena editor Chuck Norton
The Sean Hannity Interview with Donald Trump and it is worth viewing as they have a good policy discussion, especially in the second half of the interview:
One of my worthy academic friends sent me the following note:
Chuck, Trump is a complete buffoon.And his comments in this interview are garbage even compared to his usual bleats…why promote this? Cheers!
I can understand why someone might think this way. Trump is a showman, he knows all about television timing and hype and to some people the hype can certainly be viewed as buffoonery.
But as someone who is trained in communications, which includes journalism, classic rhetoric, manipulation, politics and propaganda, I have learned to separate hype and emotionalism from the substance of any message and I encourage all readers of Political Arena to learn to do the same.
So I respond:
Professor, the thing is, even though he is a showman who is over the top (I mean look at the HAIR), he is an over the top showman who has a policy point of view that connects with voters.
I, as a student of propaganda, tend to strip away the hype and examine the message, and right now Trump is the only one saying what he is saying, and that is why it is news.
Don’t prejudge, just listen. Laura Ingraham with Donald Trump on the derisive comments of pundits like Charles Krauthammer.
OK. I listened. Where’s the beef? I hear15 minutes of him dumping on Rove and Krauthammer. Rove is someone I would pay some attention to on strategies and tactics for winning elections, not political philosophy. Krauthammer usually has interesting things to say on politics and culture, but sometimes gets things wrong. I hear repeated boasting that he is a business success, saying that he understands economics…what is the audio supposed to convince me of?
One of the points being that the pundit class thinks they can pick our nominee.
Think of it this way, yo do real research in physics as well as teach. If you put out crappy research being whoppingly wrong, it would affect you. You have a stake in what you do.
But what if you just taught high school physics and nothing else? You could be glaringly wrong and wrong often and there would be no consequences (just as we see with public school teachers and the textbooks they use).
These pundits who talk and talk (Krauthammer opposed Reagan) are wrong about plenty of things (George Will even once called the Second Amendment an embarrassment) and yet where are the consequences? Yet they act as though they are entitled to dictate to us who our nominee is and anyone else who “butts in” can “butt out” as far as they are concerned.
For someone like Donald Trump, when he is wrong it affects him very directly, the credibility he has for his TV show, not to mention his credibility as a deal maker and a business man.
When Donald Trump makes a mistake it tarnishes his entire brand, his children who are a part of that brand, each move he makes has the potential to cost many millions of dollars of his personal wealth and those who invest in him, and the many thousands of jobs that he provides.
All of this is on the line with every move Trump makes. When Karl Rove or Charles Krauthammer say something stupid does it endanger the entire Fox brand? Of course not, in fact people will likely forget it two weeks later.
So who is more qualified to offer on opinion? Who has more at stake in America and in Americans? The answer is obvious, and that is why if anyone has MORE of a place to speak out as a pundit as the chattering class, it is Donald Trump, and ever other business owner who risked everything to have a chance at success. And that is the point which Laura understands and demonstrates to some degree on her show.
Where is the plan to fix America from Charles Krauthammer? Trump just wrote a book on how to do it. In fact, Charles Krauthammer’s entire life’s work is not as influential or as substantive as Donald Trump’s iconic book “The Art of the Deal”.
This brings me back to my previous point about separating the hype and emotion from the raw substance. We are so used to hype without substance from the elite media, that we start to believe that when we see hype that it automatically means there is no substance.
Did you see Mika Brzezinski tell Boon Pickens that he doesn’t pay enough in taxes? Boon is 83, he goes to work every day and he has paid $665 million in taxes since he turned age 70, and Mika went after him for not paying enough. Yet look at who holds up Mika as someone who actually matters.
Regardless of what you think about Rove or Krauthammer, the question is: “Is Trump a useful person for the Republican candidates to elevate by attending his debate?” I say ‘no’ (Not R. or K., *I* say this.). I say that Trump is not a serious man. He is a successful real-estate mogul. He is also a vain braggart with too many stupid and non-conservative ideas for me to want him to be a ‘blessed’ voice for American conservatism. I don’t think the roof will fall in if this happens, but I think that the candidates will muddy themselves by association.
There is much truth to what you just said, but in fairness, Trump never claimed to be a a “‘blessed’ voice for American conservatism” like Rush Limbaugh or as implied by Krauthammer. Trump speaks as a businessman who sees a government that is stupid with money, corrupt in it’s regulations, killing jobs, and is foolish in managing our resources. Almost every business owner in the country can identify with Donald Trump at some level. Besides, how many reporters moderating a primary debate are anything but a mouthpiece for the extremist wing of the Democratic Party?
Trump will ask questions no one in the media would think to ask, he will address issues they will not bring up, and it will give us an opportunity to see how the candidates react in a very different environment.
[Editor’s Note – It is not that I do not respect Krauthammer, Will, or Rove, it is the entire idea of “butt out” that I really take exception to.]