Quote of the day: Trump’s style replaces substance


From Corey Robin, professor of Political Science at Brooklyn College and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, writing in Jacobin:

[I]t was the singular insight of Trump and Bannon to recognize that waning power of conservatism and to act on it. That’s what prompted their critique of the Republican Party; that’s what enabled them to take it over; and that is what remains, to this day, the premise of their rule. While much of the bravado and commotion of the past two weeks, I continue to believe, is more the product of incompetence and artlessness than design, there’s little doubt that a winging-it improvisational style is something Trump has always prized. As he says in the second paragraph of The Art of the Deal — the only passage in this 367-page book in which I could find anything resembling a coherent idea —

Most people are surprised by the way I work. I play it very loose. I don’t carry a briefcase. I try not to schedule too many meetings. I leave my door open. You can’t be imaginative or entrepreneurial if you’ve got too much structure. I prefer to come to work each day and just see what develops.

With that chaotic style, which Trump and Bannon mistake for substance, they’re hoping to turn weakness into strength. I have my doubts that they can do that, as I’ve said many times, but the more important point is that this was the best the Republican Party could do.

In other words, in some very fundamental and palpable way, the Republican Party had no other choice but to nominate Trump. This — this last-ditch gamble of his — was their only hope.

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