For years, conservatives claimed that Barack Obama’s administration trafficked in lying to the American public, tyrannical use of executive authority, and social justice warrior virtue signaling at the expense of conservatives. Leftists complained that conservatives only objected to these things because they were racists – that if the shoe were on the other foot, they’d be happy to champion all of those things.
Leftists are wrong. But Donald Trump and his ardent supporters are making a solid case for the leftists when they pretend to be conservatives rather than Trump-worshipping loyalists.
Here are three ways that’s been happening in the last 24 hours:
1. Use Of The IRS And DOJ As Political Tools. Conservatives rightly cried bloody murder when President Obama’s IRS charitable 501(c)3 division, led by leftist Lois Lerner, cracked down on conservative charities. Obama first claimed ignorance, then condemned such activity (if, he said, it took place), and then finally pretended that nothing bad had happened at the IRS in the first place. Conservatives used the IRS scandal as a perfect example of federal government authoritarianism run amok.
Conservatives similarly complained about the politicization of the Department of Justice under Eric Holder and Loretta Lynch, and their attempts to sic their dogs on businesses like Exxon in order to silence anti-global warming viewpoints.
Along came Donald Trump.
This week, even as Trump announced that he wouldn’t release his tax returns because as his supporter Jeffrey Lord said, “the IRS is a very political agency,” Trump announced that he would use the IRS and DOJ to target his political adversaries. Upon learning that The Washington Post would assign 20 reporters to him, Trump told Sean Hannity, “this is owned as a toy by Jeff Bezos…Amazon is getting away with murder, tax-wise. He’s using The Washington Post for power so that the politicians in Washington don’t tax Amazon like they should be taxed.” Trump, who apparently knows nothing about law, then continued, “He thinks I’ll go after him for antitrust. Because he’s got a huge antitrust problem because he’s controlling so much, Amazon is controlling so much of what they are doing. He’s using The Washington Post, which is peanuts, he’s using that for political purposes to save Amazon in terms of taxes and in terms of antitrust.”
And Trump loyalists think all of this is hunky dory.
2. Social Justice Warrior Activism. Barack Obama has made a career out of race-baiting, class-baiting, and sex-baiting. His conservative opponents accuse him, rightly, of dividing America by group – by catering to extreme left-wing propaganda mills like Black Lives Matter and justifying violence in places like Ferguson and Baltimore, conservative say, Obama has destroyed the social fabric. Furthermore, Obama has postured on social issues like same-sex marriage to stoke resentment against religious Americans.
Trump has done precisely the same thing on race – he goes soft on his alt-right base. But more frustrating, the same Trump supporters who claim that he’s the ultimate warrior against political incorrectness absolutely disappear when Trump goes silent on social issues of importance. Today, for example, the Obama administration unilaterally revoked Genesis 5:2 and announced that boys would be girls, and vice versa for purposes of public school locker rooms and bathrooms. Here was Trump’s response: “Right now I just don’t have an opinion.” That follows hard on Trump ripping North Carolina for protecting businesses from the transgender tyranny of the left. You can’t complain about Obama’s social justice warrior divisiveness, then cheer Trump’s own divisiveness by group and silence on major social issues.
Trump followers who call him "Daddy" have nothing to say about their SJW god-hero going full SJW.
3. Lying To Americans About His Supposed Policies. Barack Obama, conservatives have said, is a liar. He promised that if you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor; he said his negotiations with Iran were designed to keep them from going nuclear; he pledged to end the war in Iraq peacefully, knowing it would not; he pledged transparency in government; he flipped on same-sex marriage after campaigning on traditional marriage. All of these were lies.
Trump lies openly. Appearing on NBC’s Today, Trump said that he was “flexible” on his Muslim immigration ban, adding, “I am totally flexible on very, very many issues, and I think you have to be that way.” He then told Fox News Radio’s Kilmeade and Friends, “Well, I’m not the president right now so anything I suggest is really a suggestion, and if I were president, I’d put in legislation and do what I have to do.”
It’s terrible when Obama lies to you. It’s fine when Trump does.
Trump exposes all those conservatives who said they were principled opponents of President Obama, yet look the other way when Trump mirrors his sins. And Trump will repeat those sins, over and over, coopting the conservative brand as he does so.