Somewhere, Driftglass is Laughing…

Presses enter, then spots the typo!

…a cold and bitter laugh.

It’s as if Rick Perlstein just discovered blogs:

I Thought I Understood the American Right. Trump Proved Me Wrong

“The professional guardians of America’s past, in short, had made a mistake. We advanced a narrative of the American right that was far too constricted to anticipate the rise of a man like Trump. Historians, of course, are not called upon to be seers. Our professional canons warn us against presentism – we are supposed to weigh the evidence of the past on its own terms – but at the same time, the questions we ask are conditioned by the present. That is, ultimately, what we are called upon to explain. Which poses a question: If Donald Trump is the latest chapter of conservatism’s story, might historians have been telling that story wrong?”

We foul-mouthed, vituperative DFH of the Left have been telling the Media this for decades, Rick. The big story is not America’s polarization, it’s that one of our two major parties has gone balls-out, hammer-down, mad-monkey terrordome crazy. And you and your colleagues in the press reported nothing.

You want your own Pulitzer? Write that story.

This entry was posted in Death of the Media, media, Wingnuttia. Bookmark the permalink.

18 Responses to Somewhere, Driftglass is Laughing…

  1. roket says:

    Rick Perlstein has an epiphany. But still, it’s not his fault. Thanks Trump.


  2. grs says:

    I read this piece this morning. I had to stop for a second and wonder how any of this was a momentous revelation. Apparently it’s news that the Republican party has a large segment that is violent and racist and has been so for a very long time.


  3. lisahgolden says:

    Talk about a bubble. All you have to do is talk to people who vote Republican to know the extent to which their brains have been rewired by 30 + years of right-wing media narrative. And I’m not talking about the establishment kind of Republican. I’m talking about the people who are barely scraping by and voting for the Rs up and down the ticket because liberals are the root of all evil.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. JTO says:

    Perlstein and David F-ing Brooks both srudied History at UChicago. WTF is wrong with that school? Sure, not everybody can get into the History program at UIdaho, but …


  5. Rick Perlstein says:

    Um, I’ve been writing what you just said for two decades now. Driftglass is a friend, and quotes my work on that very frequently. I was the first writer to call Trump a fascist. What I am doing is called “rhetoric”: you say things in a way that will get audiences who do not already agree with you to grasp something they otherwise would not be able to grasp.

    Anyway, here’s one of literally dozens of examples.

    Liked by 1 person

    • tengrain says:

      Welcome to MPS, Rick, it’s nice to have you with us.

      OK, maybe it was a bit harsh to you (and you are indeed one of the good guys); the breathless headline and subhead just Rick-rolled me, but the point is true: we need the media to stop the false equivalencies. The Republicans have been nuts for years, decades even, and everyone dances around it.



      Liked by 1 person

    • MDavis says:

      Upvote (ok, like) for showing up.

      Liked by 2 people

      • laura says:

        Media ownership is a problem.
        Repeal of the fairness doctrine is a problem.
        The concerted effort to dumb down the citizenry is the result.
        Keep doing your work Mr. Pearlstein, it’s damn good.
        But in a just world Driftglass would have BOTH a regular column in a national newspaper, a Sunday Show and a Steve Gilliard Award for excellence in blogging.


  6. I’ve been following Rick Perlstein’s work for a few years, and believe me: he already understands this all too well. But we all gotta pay the bills, amirite? It’s a sure sign of journalism’s collapse that such breathless declarations can continue to be made periodically, yet never seem to have any staying power. Something something signal-to-noise ratio and all that, I guess…


    • Jim says:

      I agree. Of all the people to be “surprised” at the rise of Trump as the next evolution of the GOP (perhaps regression is a better word), I would not expect it to be Perlstein whose three lauded books were all about the evolution/regression of the GOP from AuH2O through Nixon, Reagan and to the present. (Scratching his head in puzzlement.)


  7. Rick Perlstein says:

    Sure, I certainly thought it was a price of admission to the presidential echelons of Republican politics to artfully distance oneself rhetorically from bigotry at the same time you exploited it. Because, before Trump, it was.


    • tengrain says:

      Lee Atwater certainly showed us this, and of course all the dirty tricks which seem to be the GOP’s real stock in trade, prove the case.

      So what do you think the reason is that the Media won’t discuss the Republicans intransigence? Is it really Chuck Todd’s strange admission that the Republicans would never return to MTP if he called them out? Is it really about access?

      I know you don’t speak for everyone in the media, but still! your opinion counts as someone with insight.




    • Buckley excommunicated the John Birch Society, anti-Semites and supporters of the hyperindividualist Ayn Rand, and his cohort fused the diverse schools of conservative thinking — traditionalist philosophers, militant anti-Communists, libertarian economists — into a coherent ideology, one that eventually came to dominate American politics.

      What planet are you from where that actually happened? I want to live there.

      Liked by 1 person

      • roket says:

        Reminds me of a joke. Zombie Buckley, Zombie Reagan and Zombie Breitbart walk into a bar…..yadda,yadda,yadda…


  8. JTO says:

    TenGrain, As nobody in particular – someone noone will listen to (and I don’t blame them) – why would the media discuss Republican intransigence? Apart from all of the rainbows and unicorns of a more perfect world or able fourth estate. What is in it for them? They aren’t interested in earning or keeping my respect or showing me something I can’t figure out on my own. As Driftglass says, they are there to sell dick pills. They put on a good show. They tell us they are keeping us informed about the state of affairs. At the same time, they give us no tools to change these states, or affairs. People who want to do their civic duty by being an informed electorate, a part of the body politic, tune in. And their takeaway is the same each week – something about hell and handbaskets and both fucking sides. Not exactly sure how dick pills figure into this messaging, but we’re all sure being screwed by it.

    As ever, In Solidarity,



  9. i could go on about the media and their blind eye to the Republican trashing of this country – (can anyone say Merrick Garland?) – but I wont. I have to go eat Matzo

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I read both this post and the full article and thought I needed to speak up. But I see Perlstein has already defended himself!

    Perlstein’s article is very meta: he is politely saying it’s time to take the gloves off and stop being polite.


    • tengrain says:

      Frank –

      I’m amazed you got that out of it, I sure didn’t. After reading your comment, I re-read to the article. I thought I was missing a second part of it if you saw that message; I do see that Perlstein gives a clear history of all the bigotry on the right, but then it sort of stops… I don’t see anything indicating he is suggesting that the Media take off the gloves. I mean he doesn’t even take off his gloves.

      Or maybe I’m dense? Well, of course, yes.

      Opinions Vary! as they say.





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