Ann Althouse reacts to a Peggy Noonan column.
Throughout the whole political season, Trump was battered with the fear of fear, and now he's won and he's told to pander to the people who said whatever they could to oppose him, the people who stoked the fear that he needs to prioritize calming. As if it could ever be calmed, as if his opponents will ever stop stoking it.
Ah, so it wasn't “high-class”! It wasn't slick in the glossy professionalized style that the elite sell at a high price. These fine people in her circle — the kind of people she'd like Trump to hire on to assuage the fears of the young men and beautiful ladies — these people “lost in a data-filled fog,” who didn't see what was coming — since they weren't running the campaign, the campaign that was run could not be the cause of what happened. “This is how you know” it was a movement of the people: The campaign was bad, and therefore what happened must be understood as the people identifying themselves and getting themselves out to vote.
Trump didn't do that. You didn't build that.
“It was a natural, self-driven eruption.”
Incredible! Trump didn't run a high-class, high-tech campaign. That's correct. But that doesn't mean he did nothing! He did something bold and unique, combining wild social media — tweeting — with big rallies in the manner of an old-time “whistle-stop” campaign — not with a train but that big Trump plane. How many rallies did he do? I couldn't find a list of all the locations, but he spoke rousingly to tens of thousands of people at a time, in all sorts of places, lighting up enthusiasm, touching off word of mouth.
Who is Peggy Noonan to say this is just “bad”? It's bad because it's “unprofessional”? Maybe it was good because it was unprofessional.
Here was one man who looked at America and saw it his own way, jumped into something for the first time, and played it instinctively, screwing up sometimes, but standing strong and barreling on. It's the most amazing political performance I've seen in my life.
And Peggy Noonan would like to deem it nothing and to say it was the people who did it all. And now, as she sees it, Trump threatens to take his nothing performance into the White House. He didn't know how to campaign, and he “doesn’t know how to be president.” So he needs help from the professionals, from Noonan's circle of highly educated, elite, befogged friends. He needed them before, and he's only lucky he won without their help. He stumbled into a people's movement, a “natural” uprising of “normal people.” So he'd better bring in the abnormals who didn't see what was coming but who are finding it “somehow… more beautiful” because they didn't see it coming. They didn't position themselves properly to seem as though they belong close to the new President, but perhaps if Peggy strings enough words together Trump will see the strange, wonderful way that they really do belong.
And don't worry. Those people — the “natural, self-driven eruption” that's the only reason you're there to dole out all these jobs — they won't think you've “gone establishment.” It's “silly to worry”! Those people are so “beside themselves with joy,” they'll accept anything. The idiots. The normal people. The ones who saw what was coming. They'll never notice.
Read more here.