by Paul Gottfried
Looking at the multiple indictments against Trump, culminating in the former president’s humiliating arrest procedure in Fulton County, Georgia on August 24, some of us may feel dismayed by these highhanded actions. Both the Democrats and their allies in the Deep State and media are working, or so it seems, to create a one-party dictatorship, one in which the opposition party functions as an ineffectual check on the wielders of power.
Democrats are trying to prevent Republicans from ever again challenging elections in which the Dems can have the upper hand and roll out their bag of tricks undisturbed. Trump and his advisors have been indicted for racketeering and other criminal offenses for questioning the legitimacy of the 2020 election. Such a harsh response did not occur when Democrats contested past Republican victories. Now morality is being reduced, as Socrates’ interlocutor Thrasymachus put it, to the “advantage of the strong.”
The, for me, most intriguing question is why the Left is moving right now to crush its opposition. It is no mystery that aggressive powers throughout history will pounce on what they crave. But the big question is why they act at one time rather than another. The Hellenistic historian Polybius distinguished long range causes, like the Roman striving for empire, from occasions for particular wars, e.g., the circumstances leading up to the struggles between Rome and Carthage. In the present case we might ask why the Left is going after total power at this point in time.
The Republican media offer some of the more obvious reasons. Those in power are diverting public attention from the crimes of the Biden family, by making the story about Trump and his multiple indictments. Thus, the Democratic Party, with the help of a weaponized Department of Justice, has moved against Biden’s likely opponent in the presidential race next year. Merrick Garland and his collaborators hope to make sure that Trump will be so entangled in criminal proceedings that he won’t be able to compete effectively against a mentally debilitated president, whom the Left is now shielding from attack. Both the trials and the negative publicity generated by the media for Biden’s opponent will allow the incumbent to remain full-time in his basement while his handlers win re-election for this plainly unfit officeholder.
But perhaps even more significant in explaining what’s happening is that the Democrats believe they can carry out their coup d’état with public support. This is something my fellow-conservatives often try not to notice, the massive electoral bloc held by the Left, which can be activated when needed. College students, unmarried women fixated on abortion, wokeified soccer moms, and inner-city blacks, whom the Democrats stir up by talking about white racism and evil policemen, are not exactly the people who will care if Donald Trump is thrown into jail on questionable charges. According to a recent Pew study, the Democrats not only have a four- point lead over Republicans; they enjoy a two-point lead among independents who lean in a partisan direction. Also influencing the Democrats’ action may be the knowledge that two-thirds of Americans polled believe that the charges leveled against Trump for the events of January 6 were “serious” or “very serious.”
Perhaps most persuasive for the Democrats and the Left were the elections last year. Despite a horrible, inflated economy, sharp rises in energy costs, a totally broken Southern border, and cities overrun by crime, Biden’s party did remarkably well in scaring up votes. Instead of losing an election in an off year, which usually happens to the party occupying the presidency, Democrats increased their strength in the Senate and in many state assemblies. We in Pennsylvania got stuck with a brain damaged social radical as our new senator; and according to polls, John Fetterman still enjoys a 39 percent approval rating in our state. In short, the Democrats and their weaponized government and media echo chamber are doing what they’re doing because they are convinced that a majority of the country stands behind them.
Quite possibly, however, Democrats and their Deep State allies may have overplayed their hand. The MSM seem giddy with rapture as they mockingly report Trump’s arrest. The British Guardian treated Biden’s ridicule of Trump’s mugshot taken during his arrest with gleeful approval. It is ludicrous to pretend that the lapdogs of the ruling class have the slightest interest in justly resolving the indictments against Trump and other Republicans. They are exhilarated by the fruits that their longtime smear campaign is yielding. And for my fellow Pennsylvanians, I have news. According to our PA Fair Elections watchdog, our Democratic Secretary of State is sending out a multitude of ballots to certain overseas voters, without requiring any form of voter identification. No election irregularities! You must be kidding!
Right now, we see the growth of a large indignant opposition to Democratic outrages. The situation could become more combustible if those in the middle started feeling the same anger.
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Paul Edward Gottfried is the editor of Chronicles. An American paleoconservative philosopher, historian, and columnist, Gottfried is a former Horace Raffensperger Professor of Humanities at Elizabethtown College in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania, as well as a Guggenheim recipient.
Photo “Fulton County DA Fani Willis” by Fani Willis.