Amidst the latest Trumpstorm (“Trumpenkampf“?), let’s revisit one of John Marini’s sage observations from way back in 2016 that is especially useful to keep in mind just now:
It is possible that the Trump phenomenon cannot be understood merely by trying to make sense of Trump himself. Rather, it is the seriousness of the need for Trump that must be understood in order to make sense of his candidacy. Those most likely to be receptive of Trump are those who believe America is in the midst of a great crisis in terms of its economy, its chaotic civil society, its political corruption, and its inability to defend any kind of tradition—or a way of life derived from any kind of tradition—because of the transformation of its culture by the intellectual elites. This sweeping cultural transformation occurred almost completely outside the political process of mobilizing public opinion and political majorities. The American people themselves did not participate or consent to the wholesale undermining of their way of life, which government and the bureaucracy helped to facilitate by undermining those institutions of civil society that were dependent upon a public defense of the old morality. This great crisis has created the need for a Trump, or someone like Trump, and only those who recognize it as a crisis can be receptive to his candidacy.
How many people are “someone like Trump” on the scene just now? Gov. DeSantis, the nation turns its eyes to you.