Since 2015, perhaps the foremost argument for Trump has been of the but he fights!” variety. By my rough estimate, 100 books, 10,000 op-eds, and a trillion tweets have been dedicated to the proposition that he’s the fighter we need. He’s King David! Red Caesar! Cyrus! He’s a counterpuncher! He takes the gloves off. He’ll go there! He’ll say what others won’t say! When the rules are defined as the stuff of a corrupt establishment, the refrain is he’s not going to play by your rules.” When the rules are defined by a paranoid conviction that the left and the deep state will do anything to hold onto power, the refrain switches to he’ll beat them at their own game!” In short, the argument is that Trump is a juggernaut, an unstoppable force who will do anything until he wins.

Trump even managed to take the fact—and it is a fact, even according to him— that he is an incessant whiner into a strength. I do whine because I want to win, and I’m not happy about not winning, and I am a whiner, and I keep whining and whining until I win.” And, amazingly, his biggest fans—you know the people who talk about the glories of manliness and strength and who think that Cry more, lib” is a mic-drop response to any argument they don’t like—processed this confession of deliberate crybabiness as something to celebrate.   

But here’s the thing: It’s all B.S.

By their own standards, Trump is a staggering weakling and coward.

Jonah Goldberg, The Caver in Chief

January 27, 2024

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