That The New York Post Headline intentionally buried this week—”Florida man makes announcement‘ – gets a lot of praise for his skillful trolling of former President Donald Trump. In case you missed it, the very short blurb didn’t even take up a whole column A newspaper page contained lines like: “Just 720 days before the next election, a Florida retiree surprisingly announced that he was running for president.”
I’m a fan of this genre (hats off to the Queen’s Daily Eagle, which started with the headline trend “Queens Man Does X”). With no threat of goading him into another presidential bid (the horse’s out of the stable) and only an idiot would actually underestimate his chances of winning again, ridicule and disdain from this series loser don’t have much of a downside. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, notoriously dour, even gets involved – dismissing Trump’s childish taunts the way an important businessman might shoo away a naughty child. I love it.
But what bothers me: this New York Post does all this without any self-confidence, without admitting “my bad” or expecting his opinion to change or past complicity. There’s no acknowledgment that the Never Trumpers were right about Orange Julius all along. Instead the post seems to remember the last seven years.
Keep in mind, The post endorsed Trump in the 2016 New York Republican primary, writing that he is “an outspoken entrepreneur with a common sense on the outskirts … that reflects the best of ‘New York values’ — and to all Americans who rightly offer the best hope of the.” feel betrayed by the political class.”
An impeachment (and a lot of weirdness) later, that post endorsed Trump again in 2020, writing, “The media is hugely fixated on Trump’s tweets and impromptu remarks and never learns the lesson that most of the time he just riffs.” By supporting him, we focus on the actions and accomplishments of President Trump. He kept his promises.”
Then, just before the election post published an opinion column that said Trump will be “an invincible hero who has not only survived every dirty trick the Democrats have done, but also the Chinese virus.”
And for decades before Trump entered politics, no media outlet was more instrumental in creating the myth of Trump as a fascinating business scholar than the postwho used him as an anonymous source in countless gossip stories and covered every one of his “scandals” on the front page (which he absolutely loved).
In fairness, the post turned on Trump after he lost 2020 (nearly tearing that country in half instead of accepting his defeat), telling him to “give it up.” That deserves an asterisk, but condemning an attempted coup is a low bar for a media outlet founded by Alexander Hamilton.
But the post has turned up the heat over the past few days, and they’re just one of Rupert Murdoch’s outlets to have traversed a similar path since midterms 2022, suggesting these aren’t spontaneous, local, or organic decisions.
As well as The Wall Street Journal and Fox News (both owned by Murdoch and both showing strong early opposition to Trump’s takeover of the GOP) all seemed to get the memo that after he won the 2016 Republican nomination, you had to be on Team Trump if you wanted to keep performing , those outlets (and many of their employees) now appear to be slowly moving away from Trump and embracing DeSantis. Can we trust individuals and organizations who vacillate like this? One has to wonder if people who hugged Trump under duress only to kick him when he’s down don’t fall back into line when his nomination seems inevitable.
“…no media outlet was more instrumental in creating the myth of Trump as a fascinating business scholar than the Post, which used him as an anonymous source in countless gossip stories and covered every one of his “scandals” on the front page (which he absolutely loved).”
This phenomenon also occurs outside of the Murdoch Empire. The Club for Growth, a fiscally conservative organization, was vehemently opposed to Trump (I’ve spoken at their conferences during this period) only to change course and bow to him completely. Now they’ve released a poll showing DeSantis beating Trump.
Likewise, National Review famously released his Against Trump cover in 2016, only to have many of the authors featured in that issue end up embracing Trump. The newest NO Editorial simply titled “No”. begins with this sentence: “To paraphrase Voltaire after attending an orgy, once was an experiment, twice would be perverted.”
Nominate Trump again want be perverted But outside NO and a few other conservative channels, perversity is the business model for many right-wing media today.
Still, I don’t want to discourage potential allies. If we are ever to take back the Conservative Movement and the Republican Party from the forces of MAGA, the first step must be to stop Trump. And that experiment, as Voltaire might appreciate, inevitably requires some flexible positions and odd bedfellows.
My message to the New York Post and other potential Conservative allies is this: It would help if you admitted you were wrong and that non-MAGA Never Trumpers were right.
Regardless of your decision, I’m glad you’re here. You can quote me on this: “New York tabloid is better late than never.”