dailybeast.com: (Matt Lewis excerpt)
…[F]awning praise isn’t limited to the partisans in the White House or at Fox News. Over at National Review, Dennis Prager has authored a controversial column criticizing “Never-Trumpers” for not falling in line. He describes Trump as “our general” and theorizes that conservatives who oppose Trump “do not believe that America is engaged in a civil war, with the survival of America as we know it at stake.”
He concludes, “I beg them: Please report for duty.”
In fairness, there’s a lot of truth to Prager’s theory. Yes, a common denominator for Trump backers might be a belief in an apocalyptic future—lacking their Trumpian savior, of course. Likewise, Never Trumpers did not see a Trump loss as the end of America. But that is only one of the differences that separate the pro-Trump conservatives from the Never Trumpers.
Trump supporters, it seems to me, are more disposed to prize authoritarian traits like loyalty and hierarchy. For these Trump apologists, the analogies never end. He is our general. Sometimes he’s our daddy. Sometimes he’s our CEO. Whether it’s paternalistic, militaristic, or capitalistic, there are numerous ways to be subservient to him. Pick your favorite!
Conservatives who are viscerally turned off by the Trump cult of personality prize things like the rule of law and balance of powers. Part of what this means is that the idea of a ruling class repels us. We believe the maxim that absolute power corrupts absolutely, and we instead celebrate the system and institutions that check the accumulation of power. We see dissent as patriotic. We see the messianic impulse of some Americans as a very dangerous tendency. We believe that it’s not healthy to put politicians on a pedestal. We believe you should respect your leaders and pray for them—but not to them.
I’ll confess that sometimes skepticism gets mixed up with cynicism. There is also sometimes a smugness associated with being a rebellious contrarian. Most of us small-r republicans find sycophants and brown-nosers repulsive.
Still, it’s one thing to suck up to your boss at the office. It’s another thing entirely to suck up to a president. Part of the reason for this is that Trump’s team views him as the boss—as the CEO of the country. This is a destructive tendency. It also undermines the system America’s Founding Fathers put in place to keep any one person from gaining too much power.
The people who suck up to him might work for Trump, but we do not. In fact, he works for us. And we shouldn’t ever let him forget it.
Lewis’ words are music to my ears. He reaffirms what I thought being a conservative meant. I thought I used to be one. I still have some vestiges from that era.
Why do people seem to worship Trump? Why do they fawn over him? It has to be more than keeping a job. I personally don’t know anyone who fawns over Trump. I do see people on this blog defending him in general but not over specifics.
To me, the Trump worship seems cult like. I have watched the rallies. My assessment of the situation has not changed. Someone here fill me in over what’s really going on. It just makes no sense to me.