Stop normalizing Republicans
I have been thinking that a piece of the problem with the NYT and other news agencies is that we are so beaten down by the constant barrage of Trump's depravity we need comfort. Anything to soften it up. And we buy their papers. Normalizing Trump's republicans can have the effect of reducing anxiety by giving hope that Republicans will become decent people. It is a sick twist, for sure.
My high school journalism teacher would never let us get away with “'Some Say' Some Said “ journalism. It’s not just that two unnamed sources does not equal a trend, but as you point out, there is no groundswell of opposition; the Times wants a horse race where there is none. The Times is missing out on the biggest story of the new millennium (so far) and that’s one of our two political parties has gone nuts —and remember Trump didn’t just win the nomination, he won it with the most support of any GOP candidate in the history of their party. The GOP is Donald Trump, there is no difference.
The true narrative is that an uncertain number of Republicans, operating in near total obscurity, are infinitesimally embarrassed, almost, by Trump. But they can't be bothered to act on such a weak impulse. It would be a fine story to tell, openly and bravely.
Eric: I’m so confused! Thought the WSJ was conservative and the NYT was liberal. So, why is the NYT normalizing the GOP? How is that in their or their readers’ best interests?!
One of my dearest friends lives in DC and is a policy wonk. He deals with republicans who work in the areas where he works. He mirrors the problem here: New York Times political correspondents are bright and talk with equally bright people, so they really think when The Daily Show interviews Trump supporters, it's comedy and not reality. What The Times's mediocrity of an executive editor decried as not understanding the rest of the country in 2016 continues, except not in the way he thinks: The Times refuses to understand that republicans are not simply factually minded people who disagree on the best policies. They are all Louie Gohmert.
As always-great observations. The Times is almost unreadable these days. Yesterday’s front page piece on the ‘Swagger’ of midtown neighborhoods was a great example of the absurdity of its recent ‘journalism’.
Please also remember the NYT is “ground zero” for the “liberal media” (caps optional) argument.
A better argument is that Trump’s approval ratings among Republicans has dropped about 10%.
Another telling argument will be how tightly Republicans tie themselves to Trump in the general election.