Republicans versus the Republic

If the controversy over the firing of James Comey, the F.B.I. director, has done anything, it has confirmed my decision on Nov. 9 to leave the Republican Party after a lifetime as a loyal member.

While the president has the authority to fire the F.B.I. director, to do so under these circumstances and for these reasons is a gross violation of the trust citizens place in the president to ensure that the laws “be faithfully executed.” If this is not a prima facie case of obstruction of justice — an impeachable offense — it’s hard to know what is.

Republicans would understand this and say so if these actions were taken by President Hillary Clinton. But when it comes to President Trump, they have checked their principles at the Oval Office door.

Are there even three principled Republicans left who will put their devotion to the Republic above their fealty to the Republican Party?

Max Boot: When Will Republicans Stand Up to Trump?

Signs point to no. If Trump bragging about serial sexual assault wasn’t enough to keep them from supporting him, legal abuses of power seem unlikely to do so.

Trolling is All That Remains

But the real heart of anti-anti-Trumpism is the delight in the frustration and anger of his opponents. Mr. Trump’s base is unlikely to hold him either to promises or tangible achievements, because conservative politics is now less about ideas or accomplishments than it is about making the right enemies cry out in anguish.

In many ways anti-anti-Trumpism mirrors Donald Trump himself, because at its core there are no fixed values, no respect for constitutional government or ideas of personal character, only a free-floating nihilism cloaked in insult, mockery and bombast.

Charlie Sykes: If Liberals Hate Him, Then Trump Must Be Doing Something Right

A desire for transgression is all that’s left of the American right.

Our Post-Factual World

Mr. Trump understands that attacking the media is the reddest of meat for his base, which has been conditioned to reject reporting from news sites outside of the conservative media ecosystem.

For years, as a conservative radio talk show host, I played a role in that conditioning by hammering the mainstream media for its bias and double standards. But the price turned out to be far higher than I imagined. The cumulative effect of the attacks was to delegitimize those outlets and essentially destroy much of the right’s immunity to false information. We thought we were creating a savvier, more skeptical audience. Instead, we opened the door for President Trump, who found an audience that could be easily misled.

Charles Sykes: Why Nobody Cares the President is Lying

Some Things Never Go Out of Style

The spokesmen of those earlier movements felt that they stood for causes and personal types that were still in possession of their country — that they were fending off threats to a still established way of life. But the modern right wing, as Daniel Bell has put it, feels dispossessed: America has been largely taken away from them and their kind, though they are determined to try to repossess it and to prevent the final destructive act of subversion. The old American virtues have already been eaten away by cosmopolitans and intellectuals; the old competitive capitalism has been gradually undermined by socialistic and communistic schemers; the old national security and independence have been destroyed by treasonous plots, having as their most powerful agents not merely outsiders and foreigners as of old but major statesmen who are at the very centers of American power. Their predecessors had discovered conspiracies; the modern radical right finds conspiracy to be betrayal from on high.

Richard Hofstadter: The Paranoid Style in American Politics

The Oppressed Majority

In a new poll released by the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) on Tuesday, a whopping 43 percent of Americans told researchers that discrimination against whites has become as large a problem as discrimination against blacks and other minority groups.

White Americans long for the 1950s, when they didn't face so much discrimination — The Washington Post

Absolutely pathetic.

No Such Thing as Cheese

So some doddering chemist emeritus doesn’t believe in climate change. So what, right? But Woodcock’s assertions are noteworthy for just how magnificently bogus they are. And the fact that he has been embraced by influential people in the conservative media-sphere shows both the intellectual bankruptcy of movement conservatism and the way it has poisoned the climate change debate.

— Ryan Cooper: This is a perfect example of why scientists don’t vote Republican