Historian Victor Davis Hanson's New Book Defends TrumpBreaking News
tags: books, Victor Davis Hanson, Donald Trump
I had expected that “The Case for Trump” would be an argument for why Donald Trump has been a good president, but it’s mostly about why Trump won in 2016, and its analysis, based on old polling and news clips, is interminable, marred by some cable-news-style exaggeration (Trump’s election foes are repeatedly characterized as being for “open borders”) and not particularly original. Victor Davis Hanson does, however, explain in passing and in the book’s concluding two chapters why he thinks Trump has been a good president, and this argument has some genuine merit and originality.
In his preface, Hanson quotes approvingly Henry Kissinger’s judgment of Trump: “I think Trump may be one of those figures in history who appears from time to time to mark the end of an era and to force it to give up its old pretense.” That is true of Trump, as it was of Kissinger’s boss, Richard Nixon. Trump took office at a time when the early promise of globalization had foundered; when the purpose of the American alliance system was in doubt; when glowing projections of liberal democracy in Russia and China had proved dead wrong; and when America was mired in unwinnable wars.
He spoke to these challenges in his campaign. His language was brutal, crude and sometimes racist or xenophobic, but in contrast to some of his opponents, he acknowledged the loss of more than two million manufacturing jobs to Chinese competition, the propensity of American companies to move abroad in search of lower wages and the continued difficulty of policing the country’s southern border. But the question is: What as president has he done about these things?
comments powered by Disqus
- Trump administration says joint UNC, Duke Middle East Studies program portrays Islam too positively
- What White Kids Learn About Race in School
- Frederick Douglass photos smashed stereotypes. Could Elizabeth Warren selfies do the same?
- Chronicling New York’s Muslim History
- New Documents Illuminate The University of Texas’s Secret Strategy to Keep Out Black Students
- Women Scientists Were Written Out of History. It’s Margaret Rossiter’s Lifelong Mission to Fix That
- Allen C. Guelzo Reviews Sidney Blumenthal's Latest Installment of His Biography of Lincoln
- What Reconstruction-Era Laws Can Teach Our Democracy: The NY Times Reviews Eric Foner's Latest Book
- Should historians read their own book?
- Cokie Roberts, Pioneering Journalist Who Helped Shape NPR, Dies At 75