NYT: On the GOP’s Unravelling

The NYT has a piece titled “Republican Party Unravels Over Donald Trump’s Takeover”:

Many Americans still cannot believe that the bombastic Mr. Trump, best known as a reality television star, will be on the ballot in November. Plenty are also anxious about what he would do in office.

But for leading Republicans, the dismay is deeper and darker. They fear their party is on the cusp of an epochal split — a historic cleaving between the familiar form of conservatism forged in the 1960s and popularized in the 1980s and a rekindled, atavistic nationalism, with roots as old as the republic, that has not flared up so intensely since the original America First movement before Pearl Harbor.

Some even point to France and other European countries, where far-right parties like the National Front have gained power because of the sort of resentments that are frequently given voice at rallies for Mr. Trump.

As a news piece, the article has a robust flavor of condescension:

But as a shrewd business tactician, he understood the Republican Party’s customers better than its leaders did and sensed that his brand of populist, pugilistic, anti-establishment politics would meet their needs.


Of the White Death and White Dispossession, Mr. Bowling Alone is briefly quoted:

“The economic deprivation of the last 30 years for working-class whites, combined with growing social isolation, was really dry tinder,” said Robert D. Putnam, the Harvard political scientist who wrote “Bowling Alone.” And Mr. Trump, Mr. Putnam contended, “lit a spark.”

“He constructed a series of scapegoats that these folks would find plausible,” said Mr. Putnam, citing Mr. Trump’s attacks on Muslims and immigrants. “He was willing to say things that might have always been popular, but you couldn’t say it.”

Someday soon, the NYT will be quoting from Alt-Right individuals for responses or interpretations.

We’re not there yet.

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