He pretty much is giving these people exactly what they want. Don’t you think?
Trump promised to remake America in the image of its national memories, the ones that get hauled out around the holidays and passed from cousin to cousin. The ones with sepia tones and well-thumbed edges that obscure all the complications. He promised rich white people they wouldn’t have to think, as they’ve been forced to since the world flattened out, about anyone who wasn’t lucky enough to live like them. He promised those same rich and middle-class white people they could forget about the world again, think of themselves only, and speak as though they were the only ones in the room.
Look at that list. Half of it is just conversations they don’t want to have. They don’t want real problems solved. They want to feel better. He’s making them feel better.
Which wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world if real shit wasn’t going on. If Trump was just Bizarro World Mr. Rogers, who comforted the white assholes who watched him nightly as he spewed conspiracies and victimization, yeah that would be awful but it wouldn’t be a crisis.
What’s going on now is a crisis. Trump goes on a Twitter tirade about Puerto Ricans being selfish and ungrateful as they ask to, you know, NOT DIE if possible, that’s not just some celebrity. He’s out there explicitly making it okay not to care about people because, I dunno what the wingnut orthodoxy here is, something something handouts?
And so his followers go and find a reason to make it okay not to give a shit, like, something something unions, because that’s all they need in their minds to make the problem go away.
He’s doing the job he got elected to do. He’s giving them permission to not give a damn. If only we’d thought of that.