Thursday, November 17, 2016

WILL TRUMP REDUCE THE POWER OF THE IMPERIAL PRESIDENCY? If by reducing the power you mean reducing the amount of power the American people grant, then Reason.com's Jacob Sullum argues the answer is yes:
If there is an advantage to electing a preening, petty, thin-skinned, whiny, vindictive, vacuous, mendacious, boorish bully to that office, it may be that he prompts a reconsideration of the absurd hopes and cultish veneration that surround the presidency. Perhaps a ridiculous president will encourage Americans to take the presidency less seriously.

Then again, the deference that is reflexively given the office could rub off on Trump, who is no less buffoonish today than he was on the morning of November 8. Already we see signs of strange new respect, as harsh critics of the authoritarian huckster swallow their revulsion and wish him well.

Chicago Now blogger Brian C. Thomas confesses that "there is a large part of me that wants to drop my pants and flip the double bird to much of the national Republican Party and the people who voted for Donald Trump." But he argues that "being an American demands we respect the office of the President."

How so? "I don't want this country to fail," Thomas explains. "Rooting against Donald Trump—now that he's president—would be like rooting against the country."

But Trump is not the country, and depending on the policies he pursues he can do more damage by succeeding than by failing. When it comes to disrupting trade and immigration, for instance, I will unabashedly root against him. That does not make me less American.

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