Trumpenpanic: Or, Elites Lose Their Minds

“Ahhhliooga ooga oogum!” said the reporter.

“Arrrrrgapssft! Framowitz!” agreed his colleague.

“Bwipbwipbwip. Bwip!” added the editor.

“Hoolalahoolalahoo!” insisted the activist.

“Will somebody please change my diaper?” asked the student.

There hasn’t been a traditional source yet reacting to Trump keeping one of his promises that didn’t sound like that mother on the phone in A Christmas Story who has just learned her son said a dirty word. Raging unreasoning incoherence isn’t in it.

Never have Mencken’s words about hobgoblins been more applicable (“The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed, and hence clamorous to be led to safety, by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.”) Except here, it is our elites doing it to themselves. We’re thisclose to having a genuine moral panic on our hands.

There is angst. There is fear. There is anxiety. There is actual running around in circles. The media dared glimpse Trump, the Inverted Gorgon, and then they became (it’s Pop Culture Reference Day today at like those 1940s German officials at the end of Raiders of the Lost Ark.

What a lovely thing to see.

I said German officials, mind, and did not use the N-word, because celebrities—our true heroes—and intellectuals—our finest minds—have rights over this useful and predictive label.

Remember when these kind and thoughtful people called (over and again) the Koch brothers German officials? Well, now Chuck Koch has called Trump a German official. Wait until they hear!

All fixed reference points the elite have relied on for many years have been removed. They are at sea, aghast appalled alarmed. All their worst fears have not been realized, but they are sure they will be at any moment, and so do now want to be caught unprepared, thus they have already assumed crash positions. Maybe they should have listened to Bill Clinton (and Al Gore) on immigration.

Perhaps a vote for Most Absurd Moment is in order. In a top slot is Chucky Schumer manfully bringing out the onion and calling Trump a big meanie. Tied must be the Times scribbler who giggled and goggled and called for Trump’s assassination.

Or how about that female person who was certain sure Trump Photoshopped a picture of his own hands so that they appeared bigger?

Then there’s the American Association of Geographers—Geographers, I say—who have released an official statement “on the recent Trump Executive Order limiting travel to the US from several countries.” Note that is “Trump Executive Order” and not Mister or President Trump. This was their “attempt roll back the restrictions of this Executive Order.” Sure, the opposition party and Democrats are against Trump, but just wait until our President hears the geographers are coming after him!

Maybe those reporters who are screeching about “threats” to the First Amendment because Steve Bannon politely reminded them they haven’t got a thing right about Trump yet and so in humility they had best shut up and listen for awhile.

Incidentally, by “First Amendment” they don’t mean freedom of association, which suggests Diversity quotas and mandatory cake baking should be fundamentally illegal, nor do they mean freedom of religion, because that implies there exists an authority higher than journalists. What they don’t want to lose is the “right” to lie, insinuate, and calumniate with impunity—in order to make the world a better place, of course.

James Cameron says the world is doomed. Well, the man responsible for Avatar ought to know about moral disasters.

Californians are always in the running. Many want to secede. Let ’em, I say. Let them have everything, including the military bases! But make it a condition of their departure that they give those citizens who want to six months to escape, before Jerry Brown builds a wall between us and them.

Then the master stroke. After the grace period, we declare war on them. Invade and destroy! Carpet bomb Hollywood. Drop leaflets on celebrity homes reminding them of the Amalekites. After their unconditional surrender, we arrest the war criminals of Berkeley and forbid any who used to work for the government or education (perhaps half the state) from future public employment for life. Seize the assets of tech companies and sell them off to fill the treasury coffers. Assimilate the rest back into the union, but cut their Electoral College votes in half for 100 years.

Those are only some. Have you noticed any other good ones?

Update What did I say about war criminals in Berkeley?


  1. Michael Dowd

    I have found from personal experience (my son is a political commentator on TV) that even mentioning the name Trump causes near apoplexy. Accordingly, I am trying to think of a suitable aka that will not cause meltdown. Perhaps, ala Kafka he could be known as T or The D. I would appreciate any suggestions.

  2. Alan Watt Climate Denialist, Level 7

    Yesterday we got an email from our former parish with a “call to action” urging us to contact our Senators and Representative and protest President Trump’s Executive Order.

    As Catholic Christians who are called to honor and protect the dignity of all human life, we have a responsibility to stand together with these most vulnerable brothers and sisters across the world. An executive order to turn away victims of violence and poverty is in stark contrast to the values of our faith.

    We at … are supported in peaceful actions against this executive order by a clear Gospel message on this subject, and secondarily by our Catholic leadership:

    United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB)
    Catholic Relief Services
    Jesuit Conference
    Jesuit Refugee Services
    Archbishop Cupich, Chicago

    Did I mention this was our former parish? We’d seen clear indications how they were leaning during the campaign and transferred membership pretty much as a direct result. Our new parish includes a fair number of fellow transplants who left for the same reason.

    As one woman put it: “we’d come home from church on Sunday and be angry the rest of the week, and that’s just wrong.”

  3. Gary

    TDS (Trump Derangement Syndrome) is running riot throughout the land. Although I think his personality is not well-suited to some aspects of his present job, it’s more entertaining than I expected to see the behaviors he sets off. Some people just need to curl up with their blankies and take a nap.

  4. Sheri

    Michael Dowd: Avoiding reality is part of why children become fools as adults. Helping your son remain a fool would qualify as bad parenting, so use the words “President Trump” often in his presence. It’s the kindest thing a parent can do.

    TDS is indeed running rampant. I feel I’m back working daycare with toddlers that throw tantrums, hold their breath, throw food, etc. Except these are adults by age and the ones who will be doing brain surgery on your kid when he gets hit by a car. That should be a sobering thought if anyone still loves their children. How this was allowed to go so far, I do not understand, other than complete denial and/or cowardice on the part of the Right.

    NO—we do not carpet bomb California after it secedes. People need to feel the full consequences of their stupidity. Dead people don’t suffer the consequences of their stupid. It’s like Liberals. Never ask for Liberals to die. Just put them on an island together and let them duke it out. It’s the best punishment/learning experience out there. The survivors can continue their Liberal Utopia on the island away from the rest of the world. Future liberal can be shipped to the island as needed. We need to keep a few for bad examples of what humans can turn out to be when they long to live as wooley farm animals and not the apex predator on the planet. (For further evidence, visit Germany or Sweden. Be sure your will is order before you depart.)

  5. I caught Dennis Miller on O’Reilly last night “joking” (he’s a comedian, in case you didn’t know, because if you weren’t told, you really couldn’t know) about the West Coast and Northeast breaking off from the rest of America to become “Maxico” and “The Bubble” respectively. The trouble, of course, with such a scenario is the rest of the country would be left far poorer indeed. For all the ostensible socialism and Nanny-State-ism of the Liberal Coasts, capitalism does just fine in those places, better than in most of the ostensibly conservative, dutifully capitalistic states.

    Miller called the Northeast “The Bubble,” intimating an ignorance of the rest of the world around them, though they live in one of the most diverse regions on the planet.

    Conservatives should avoid two activities altogether – comedy and sociology. They just aren’t up to the tasks.


  6. Alan D McIntire

    Slightly off topic, but most of the TV and radio commentators say, “The media IS”, which irks me to no end. Marshall McLuhan said,
    “The medium is the message.” Those ignorant commentators should either say,
    “The media are…..”, or “The news medium is….” We is done with our rant.

  7. Sander van der Wal


    New York, Los Angeles et al are richer because they have the whole of the USA to sell to. When the rest of the USA is a different country, the economics will change.

    Further, the Big Data centers of FB, Google and whatnot are not in California. There’s no reason for FB et al to stay in California, when most of their programmers are already from the rest of the world.

  8. Anon

    I used to value the musings of Charles Krauthammer, but these days he seems to be At One with the rest of the legacy media. Charles Crabhammer is more like it.

  9. Uncle Mike

    Dear Matt,

    I know you use the words “carpet bomb” as a joke, but they are ironically unfunny.

    You see, Barky Obummer already carpet bombed my watershed. Real carpet bombs were dropped on 10 square miles of Santiam Pass in Oregon’s Deschutes and Willamette National Forests three summers ago.

    Barky and his “enviro” minions bombed known spotted owl nest sites, heritage old-growth trees, and 10,000 year-old trails and sacred sites. They bombed to the water’s edge and even bombed Big Lake (dead fish and bomb shrapnel in the water testified to the Fed atrocities). A black snag patch is all that remains of a once vibrant forest.

    It’s not funny because it is real. Thank God (or thank Donald) the sick twitch psycho terrorist carpet bombers are gone from our government (or else on their way out). I hope. Send them back to the slime gutter where they belong.

  10. Everyone involved with the insanity at Berkely needs to be ARRESTED now. It’s not as if Donald hasn’t given then time to prove they can be a loyal opposition. No, they are just the opposition. Violent, hate-filled, snarling maniacs. Soon Mike Pence will be deployed with 10,000 volt gloves to clear out the rabble. Here’s hoping!

    By the way, my blog has now moved to WordPress.

  11. Sander, I knew more people from “Flyoverland” in the NYC and LA areas than I ever met in “Flyoverland.” The point is that it is the small-town folk watching too much FOX News who are in the “bubble.” Not people who are exposed to literally ALL of the country’s, and the world’s, diversity.


  12. Sander van der Wal


    But that doesn’t change the economics of having two states. Or three, because NY and LA do not want to be each other’s subordinate.

  13. Ray

    ““The media IS”, which irks me to no end. ” Ditto.
    How about the media types that call the democrat party the democratic party? I see this continually. The reporters obviously don’t know the difference between a noun and adjective or they are liars. The democrats remind me of a little kid whose toy has been snatched away and now they are having a shrieking, screaming temper tantrum.

  14. “How about the media types that call the democrat party the democratic party?”

    Make my day. Take about coming full circle.

  15. Ken

    How about this for a policy: Let’s selectively let into the U.S. a sizable population of a particular demographic that, based on religious convictions, suppresses women to a medieval level (or to the extent they can) and which has values that are irreconcilably in conflict with any tolerance for homosexuals.

    For some reason, the LGBT community & others that as oh-so-pro women’s rights overtly support that — because that’s what letting in all those refugees is doing/will do … never minding that some small number of those will be terrorists holding more extremist views…

    Here’s a shrink’s perspective from about four years ago, every bit as relevant still:

    For those that think that such sub-groups will be too small to matter, think again: (looks interesting based on a skim, can’t yet say I agree, or not…)

  16. Briggs


    ‘WAKE UP & JOIN THE RESISTANCE’: Sarah Silverman calls for a military coup to overthrow President Trump

    Which was echoed here:

    And see Trump tweet inside this:

    “If U.C. Berkeley does not allow free speech and practices violence on innocent people with a different point of view – NO FEDERAL FUNDS?”

    Some prominent female said “Punch Nazis. Riot when your college invites a Nazi. Set it all on fire. In case of doubt, study history.” And then justified, with zero sense of irony, “Hate speech is not free speech It’s called incitement. It’s a crime.” Hilarious. Oh my. Hilarious.


    Congrats on the move. Site looks great.

  17. Andy

    JMJ claims he is not in a bubble.

    Oh the funnies!

  18. It’s amazing. Even when you say things that I could, in general, agree with (“Incidentally, by “First Amendment” they don’t mean freedom of association, which suggests Diversity quotas and mandatory cake baking should be fundamentally illegal, nor do they mean freedom of religion, because that implies there exists an authority higher than journalists” for example), your hyperbolic prose makes me question my agreement.

    That said, it’s also amazing the effect Mr. President Trump (because everyone politely and respectfully referred to his predecessor in office, right?) has on people. I have an employee whom I always regarded as a moral individual (Catholic, no less). And yet his hatred for Obama (in keeping with the tone here with respect to him, I’ve left off any honorific for Obama) and excitement over Mr. President Trump makes him forgive incredible moral lapses. Here’s a guy who brags about grabbing women by the p _ _ _ y, doing whatever he wants with them and is an admitted serial philanderer, then when women come forward to say “yeah, he did that to me” Steve (my employee) says “well, yeah, maybe but….” And when Mr. President Trump engages in obvious, undeniable, total fabrication, Steve says “well, yeah, but….” When I ask him if it’s ok to contract with someone and then stiff them like Mr. President Trump has repeatedly done, Steve says “well, not really but maybe…” When I ask him if he’d accept such behavior from his son or tolerate such behavior toward his daughters, he’s righteously indignant that I’d even ask the question. Yup, Mr. President Trump is an amazing man.

  19. Sander, the Right’s infatuation with “states” and “states rights” shows a deep disregard for our history and the what exactly these “different states” are all about. These “states” are not the historic homelands of indigenous cultures, as you see in the provinces of Old World nations. Really, our “states” are just arbitrary lines today. The common wants, needs, goals, desires of Americans are pretty homogeneous. We’re just not that different. As for states? They are just bull$#!#.


  20. Bulldust

    For a second there, Briggsy, I thought you were quoting Lady Gaga lyrics.

  21. Sander van der Wal


    And how do you think that a country like The Netherlands got its borders?

    In exactly the same way, and later than a lot of the States in the USA. The Kingdom of The Netherlands is 200 years and a bit old within its current borders.

    Anyway, I can see why a bunch of conquering immigrants think immigration is a fine thing. What i cannot understand at all is that firstly the conquerer’s children have no clue about conquering, and secondly, that these are the same people idolizing the people they conquered and the people that are conquering them, and hating their own conquering kind.

  22. Sander van der Wal

    Oops, totally forgot Belgium splitting of because the French-speaking elites in Brussels did not like the French-speaking elites in Den Haag.

    And later Luxembourg splitting of because they did not wanted a girl on the throne.

  23. Stephen

    Rob Ryan, you’ve never dealt with contractors before, huh? That field is rife with serious garbage. And why not ask about the contractors he did pay while you’re at it? Maybe you’ll discover a running theme.

    As for his morals generally, who can begrudge Trump his love of oysters? I didn’t know the left was turning puritanical. We could use more people with Trump’s attitude.

  24. A Nasty Woman

    Those are only some. Have you noticed any other good ones?

    Yes, search for ‘gloom and doom” in this blog.

    What did I say about war criminals in Berkeley?

    So what did you say about war criminals in Berkeley? All Berkeley insiders would tell you that Berkeley didn’t cancel Yiannopoulos’ (an evil person, imo) talk, the police department did because of the violence instigated by some black-clad, non-student evil people.

    How unfortunately that Trump tweeted out a threat to cut UC Berkeley’s federal funding.

    A Chinese philosopher said that a rumor stops at a wise person and that a wise person doesn’t utter untruth. And I’d say a statistician does not make claims without evidence.

    Karma shall keep serving us what we deserve.


  25. Andy

    “Sander, the Right’s infatuation with “states” and “states rights” shows a deep disregard for our history and the what exactly these “different states” are all about. These “states” are not the historic homelands of indigenous cultures, as you see in the provinces of Old World nations. Really, our “states” are just arbitrary lines today. The common wants, needs, goals, desires of Americans are pretty homogeneous. We’re just not that different. As for states? They are just bull$#!#.”

    Yes because Texans and Californians are so alike in their views of the world, hence the common voting patterns in New York state and South Carolina.

    It’s as if nobody fought for those ‘lines on a bit of paper’.


  26. John

    A Nasty Woman,
    Well it’s a good thing your opinion isn’t worth a damn, now isn’t it?

    All of this Trumpaphobia. What a lark.

    I knew he’d be the best good we could possibly get at present, but I didn’t dare hope the mere presence of one “straight CIS-gendered white man” would turn millions of simpletons into flubbering jelly!

    Glorious! If there was any doubt God loved this country before, there is none now.

  27. Bulldust

    What has to break in someone’s brain to acuse a British Catholic homosexual with a penchent for men of the African persuasion of being a Nazi? For good measure there is a dash of Jewish heritage in his family tree.

    Seriously… WTF? I guess it is a pre-requisite for punching people that they be branded a Nazi first …

  28. Brandon Gates

    > What has to break in someone’s brain to acuse a British Catholic homosexual with a penchent for men of the African persuasion of being a Nazi?

    Fury secondary to fear and a sense of betrayal amongst members of those classes could conceivably lead one to forget qualifiers such as “sympathizer” or — even nastier — “collaborator”, Bulldust. I’m quite sure at least one Vichy French was closeted gay.

    I’m not sure that Milo’s open gayness is an improvement. Are you familiar with the concept of tokenism?

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