WSJ's Peggy Noonan on the "Drama Queen"-in-Chief

July 27, 2017 6:06 p.m. ET

The president’s primary problem as a leader is not that he is impetuous, brash or naive. It’s not that he is inexperienced, crude, an outsider. It is that he is weak and sniveling. It is that he undermines himself almost daily by ignoring traditional norms and forms of American masculinity.

He’s not strong and self-controlled, not cool and tough, not low-key and determined; he’s whiny, weepy and self-pitying. He throws himself, sobbing, on the body politic. He’s a drama queen. It was once said, sarcastically, of George H.W. Bush that he reminded everyone of her first husband. Trump must remind people of their first wife. Actually his wife, Melania, is tougher than he is with her stoicism and grace, her self-discipline and desire to show the world respect by presenting herself with dignity.

Half the president’s tweets show utter weakness. They are plaintive, shrill little cries, usually just after dawn. “It’s very sad that Republicans, even some that were carried over the line on my back, do very little to protect their president.” The brutes. Actually they’ve been laboring to be loyal to him since Inauguration Day. “The Republicans never discuss how good their health care bill is.” True, but neither does Mr. Trump, who seems unsure of its content. In just the past two weeks, of the press, he complained: “Every story/opinion, even if should be positive, is bad!” Journalists produce “highly slanted & even fraudulent reporting.” They are “DISTORTING DEMOCRACY.” They “fabricate the facts.”

It’s all whimpering accusation and finger-pointing: Nobody’s nice to me. Why don’t they appreciate me?

His public brutalizing of Attorney General Jeff Sessions isn’t strong, cool and deadly; it’s limp, lame and blubbery. “Sessions has taken a VERY weak position on Hillary Clinton crimes,” he tweeted this week. Talk about projection.

He told the Journal’s Michael C. Bender he is disappointed in Mr. Sessions and doesn’t feel any particular loyalty toward him. “He was a senator, he looks at 40,000 people and he probably says, ‘What do I have to lose?’ And he endorsed me. So it’s not like a great loyal thing about the endorsement.” Actually, Mr. Sessions supported him early and put his personal credibility on the line. In Politico, John J. Pitney Jr. of Claremont McKenna College writes: “Loyalty is about strength. It is about sticking with a person, a cause, an idea or a country even when it is costly, difficult or unpopular.” A strong man does that. A weak one would unleash his resentments and derive sadistic pleasure from their unleashing.

The way American men used to like seeing themselves, the template they most admired, was the strong silent type celebrated in classic mid-20th century films—Gary Cooper, John Wayne, Henry Fonda. In time the style shifted, and we wound up with the nervous and chattery. More than a decade ago the producer and writer David Chase had his Tony Soprano mourn the disappearance of the old style: “What they didn’t know is once they got Gary Cooper in touch with his feelings they wouldn’t be able to shut him up!” The new style was more like that of Woody Allen. His characters couldn’t stop talking about their emotions, their resentments and needs. They were self-justifying as they acted out their cowardice and anger.

Views: 158

Comments are closed for this blog post

Comment by Jonathan Wolfman on July 28, 2017 at 6:00am

....

Comment by koshersalaami on July 28, 2017 at 6:13am

Interesting perspective

Comment by Jonathan Wolfman on July 28, 2017 at 6:16am

yes   and while I don't hold w some of her language's implications re: gender,  think it's worth assessing her view

Comment by Ron Powell on July 28, 2017 at 6:25am

Melania Trump’s coat: $51,000 could pay salary for a teacher, police officer, coal miner.....

"...her stoicism and grace, her self-discipline and desire to show the world respect by presenting herself with dignity...."

I don't think so...

 Jackie "O" she ain't!

Comment by Jonathan Wolfman on July 28, 2017 at 6:34am

I have three coats like that.

Comment by Ron Powell on July 28, 2017 at 6:45am

Yeah, but do you wear 'em in public?

Comment by Jonathan Wolfman on July 28, 2017 at 6:46am

Proms and Reunions, but then, I'm among my oldest friends.

Comment by JMac1949 Today on July 28, 2017 at 7:01am

R&L 'Nough said.

Comment by Ron Powell on July 28, 2017 at 7:03am

They'd have to be old to appreciate such sartorial idiosyncracies & impersonations of Liberace:

Comment by Jonathan Wolfman on July 28, 2017 at 7:04am

:)

NEW BLOG POSTS

Seriously???

Posted by koshersalaami on August 23, 2017 at 12:09pm 9 Comments

windows

Posted by ABG 2.0 on August 23, 2017 at 6:27am 1 Comment

LennyDonny

Posted by Jonathan Wolfman on August 23, 2017 at 2:30am 3 Comments

President of Arizona

Posted by moki ikom on August 22, 2017 at 9:30pm 2 Comments

Post Eclipse Blues

Posted by J.P. Hart on August 22, 2017 at 11:34am 4 Comments

Ita nos, qui vere stulti sunt!

Posted by Safe Bet's Amy on August 22, 2017 at 11:30am 8 Comments

a guest post upon my return ...

Posted by ABG 2.0 on August 22, 2017 at 9:31am 7 Comments

Tequila Anyone?

Posted by Ron Powell on August 22, 2017 at 6:30am 27 Comments

© 2017   Created by lorianne.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Privacy Policy  |  Terms of Service