The mad search for pro-Trump columnists
Failure to notice the obvious is a symptom of denial
Over the weekend some pathetic wretch — obviously a casualty of the Nov. 8 election — writing under the pen name Paul Farhi, filed a column in The Washington Post lamenting that after an extensive search of the newspapers of this great country he could hardly find any pro-Trump columnists. Actually, he could not find any, not even among the alt-right, not even among the KKK or the Neo-Nazis with whom The Post has become so familiar during this election year. Apparently, the pro-Trumpers are nowhere to be found.
Mr. Farhi wrote under the headline “Pro-Trump Columnists Hard to Find.” He went on to confect a comic “want ad” for the missing pro-Trumpers. Then he proceeded with roughly a thousand anguished words devoted to the thesis that “Major newspapers, from The Washington Post to The New York Times, have struggled to find and publish pro-Trump columns for months.” Yes, he (or maybe it is she) actually wrote, “for months.” Then he quoted editors from newspapers around the country, insisting that they had been unable to find a pro-Trump columnist. He even quoted the head of the “editorial department” of the Republican-leaning Arizona Republic, Phil Boas. Mr. Boas said there was not even a pro-Trumper among the “traditional voices on the right.” The newspaper defied a 126-year record of Republicanism to endorse Hillary. It could have done worse. The Chicago Tribune endorsed Gary Johnson who, when asked about Aleppo, said, “What is Aleppo?”
Conservative columnists were cited, among them Ross Douthat and David Brooks. Editors were quoted, The Times’ James Bennet and The Post’s Fred Hiatt. Nothing — no pro-Trump columnists anywhere.
Now allow me to submit Mr. Farhi’s idiotic labors as still more evidence of an establishment in its terminal stages of decay. Thirty or more years ago, a similarly out-of-touch establishment derided those of us who disagreed with them, say, by supporting Ronald Reagan’s candidacy or by favoring peace through strength. Now the present establishment goes beyond deriding us. It ignores us. It claims to be looking for pro-Trump columnists but can come up with not a single one. As Frank Buckley, who actually writes a pro-Trump column for the apparently invisible New York Post, says, “The establishment still can’t figure out what happened on Election Day.” It got clobbered in 2010, 2014 and 2016, but it remembers only 2012, the year Americans could not turn their back on Barack Obama, though in 2016, they turned their back on his legacy.
Curiously, Mr. Buckley and the New York Post were undetectable by Mr. Farhi and his editors. Nor did they detect The Washington Times or The Wall Street Journal, where pro-Trumpers have existed as they exist online. That Mr. Farhi and his editors cannot locate the pro-Trumpers even for a horselaugh is symptomatic of a serious condition. They are suffering from a psychological condition called denial. They need help.
If he had taken the time to read these highly readable commentators, Mr. Farhi would have come up with plenty of writers who were favorable, or at least serene, toward Donald Trump, now the president-elect. For instance, at the New York Post he would have come across Seth Lipsky and the aforementioned Mr. Buckley. At The Wall Street Journal he would have come across Bill McGurn and the inimitable James Taranto. At the Good Times he would have met Wes Pruden, Monica Crowley and, dare I mention him, me.
As a matter of fact, about the time that Mr. Farhi was preparing his fantasy, I was rereading my columns from the last few months, which were heroically published in The Washington Times, at Spectator.org, and various other places. I have not only been writing a pro-Trump column, but in at least a half-dozen, I predicted Mr. Trump’s ultimate victory. I made that prediction for the last time one week before Black Tuesday, Nov. 8. Why does not Mr. Farhi have a good laugh at my expense?
In these columns I wrote about flying with Donald on his campaign plane and covering the campaign a la Teddy White. I weighed the numbers in the forthcoming race. I compared Donald’s robust response to Hillary’s feeble thrusts. In The American Spectator, I also published writers who boldly spoke up for Mr. Trump, including Esther Goldberg, Jeffrey Lord, George Neumayr and, of course, Mr. Buckley. I even published anti-Trump pieces by such columnists as David Catron, Ross Kaminsky and William Murchison. Our readers can make up their own minds. If Mr. Farhi’s editors wanted pro-Trump writers they could have called me. I have a telephone and I am available via the Internet.
In his column, Mr. Farhi blubbers on about what he calls “fake” news, picking up a theme that has become all the rage with the establishment. Supposedly, the lunatic fringe is spreading news of conspiracies in the press and the right is especially susceptible. Well, I do not know about the right, but I have just written a column about the fake news that Mr. Farhi and his kind spread. We shall see what the journalistic community does with it. I say they will ignore my claim that the New York Post and The Washington Times and The Wall Street Journal exist.