In the latest of his ongoing series on Jewish angst about Trump as President, Kevin MacDonald first looks at the red herring arguments:
This sort of anger is hardly likely to come from Trump’s supposed lack of concern about “limited government,” or “commitment to the Constitution,” “true conservatism,” or even his personal qualities.
In unpacking these talking points, it’s useful to separate the red herrings from more fundamental concerns. For real conservatives, such as Mike Huckabee, Rick Perry, and Newt Gingrich, this election is a simple choice between someone who would be far better than Hillary Clinton on fundamental issues conservatives claim to hold dear. There is in fact a long list of Trump policies and proposals that are conservative by any reckoning—promising Scalia-like Supreme Court appointments, securing the border and deporting illegals, supporting the police against the Black Lives Matter movement, promising to end Obamacare, doing away with Common Core, taking strong pro-life and pro-Second Amendment stands, and supporting the military and veterans. [Trump unveils his potential Supreme Court nominees, by Jeremy Diamond, CNN, May 28, 2016]
Neocons never threatened to run a third-party candidate against “compassionate conservative” George W. Bush even though he was far more liberal than Trump—proposing Amnesty for illegals, expanding Medicare entitlements, signing No Child Left Behind, and racking up huge budget deficits—what some have called “Big Government Conservatism” [The liberal leanings of George W. Bush, by John Ibbitson, The Globe and Mail, April 3, 2009]. Nor was Mitt Romney a small-government candidate. [Back to Bush’s Big-Government Conservatism, by Michael Tanner, National Review, November 30, 2011]
For neocons, the huge expansion of entitlements, promotion of culture-destroying immigration, and rampaging budget deficits were not offenses against “conservatism.” These policies didn’t even register as a problem. It was more important that Bush carried out their (disastrous) neoconservative foreign policy
So why are neocons so upset? MacDonald notes:
1.) Trump has rejected basic neocon foreign policy positions on the Middle East.
Trump opposed the Iraq war which was promoted by the neocons, calling it a “complete disaster.”… Trump has also supported friendly relations with Vladimir Putin’s Russia and supported an effort to achieve stability in the Middle East by propping up the Assad government in Syria. Assad and Putin are very high on the neocon hate list. And Trump has given mixed signals on Israel, speaking about neutrality in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and avoiding money from the Republican Jewish Coalition…. Trump has given no indication that he would appoint any neocons to his administration.
2.) Trump represents the undoing of elite consensus on immigration, multiculturalism, and the moral imperative that white Americans become a minority in a country they created.
On this point, Kmac quotes the Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin, who writes: “Trump’s nativism and xenophobia make him toxic with a good deal of the American Jewish community for whom such sentiments have invariably been associated with governments hostile to Jews.” He also quotes the WSJ’s Bret Stephens who writes: “[Trumpism] is a regression to the conservatism of blood and soil, of ethnic polarization and bullying nationalism.” MacDonald adds:
Stephens is correct in that there was an older tradition of conservatism based on the ethno-national interests of the traditional American majority. This was purged by the neocons. They are now afraid it is returning, perhaps in the form of the Alt Right—the only recognizable intellectual constituency that supports Trump.