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President Trump

We live in dangerous times.

America’s intelligentsia—the establishment intellectual and professional class dominating academia, the media, Hollywood, and Silicon Valley—has taken leave of its senses. President Trump, a man who somehow retained his common sense despite a degree from the prestigious Wharton School of Business and a lifetime immersed in America’s elite establishment, is driving them mad.

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Their enmity is understandable. In fifteen months, President Trump has jumpstarted the American economy, enabled millions of new jobs and widespread increases in wages and take-home pay, lifted the standard of living of minorities, squeezed Kim Jong-Un into discussing denuclearization, wrested most of the territorial Caliphate from ISIS, reduced illegal border crossings, and enlisted key Arab allies into the fight against Islamism. In short, he’s accomplishing what the left’s experts have been declaring impossible and he’s succeeded precisely because he’s rejected their expertise.

He also has done it all against a backdrop of relentlessly breathless media misinformation and despite Congressional Democrats who abuse parliamentary rules to block hundreds of his nominees to key positions. Naturally, America’s intelligentsia rate this record a stunning failure.

But, oh how they worshiped President Obama—an elitist who was actually awarded a Nobel Prize as an advance on anticipated greatness. Joe Biden articulated the establishment’s adoration of Obama in candid, degradingly racist terms: who could fail to love “the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy?”

President Obama was indeed a champion of the intelligentsia. He enforced elite establishment preferences by weaponizing the bureaucracy, from the IRS to the FBI to the Department of Education. He damaged the one-sixth of the economy dedicated to health care, inflating costs while curtailing choice. He conferred international recognition on Iran, legitimized its nuclear and missile programs, and injected the massive cash necessary to revive its moribund economy, subsidizing terror and triggering a nuclear arms race in the unstable Middle East. The architects of these disasters bragged of the lies that helped them pull the wool over America’s eyes.

Along the way, his administration terminated due process on college campuses, empowered a violent anti-cop movement, curtailed religious freedom, branded Israel racist and criminal for refusing to ethnically cleanse Jews from Judea, turned Libya from a stable autocracy into a failed state, invited Russia into the Middle East, left a half-million Syrians to die, and helped trigger a refugee crisis that is destabilizing the EU.

President Obama took great pride in these achievements. The intelligentsia cheered them all.

The madness of America’s elitist establishment runs deep; its severance of policy from reality is near-total. For eight years, it extolled a personality cult of central authority, wielded with arbitrary fidelity to the law, as it ran roughshod over the Bill of Rights. Only when President Trump began decentralizing authority, restoring the rule of law, and defending our fundamental rights did establishment complaints about creeping authoritarianism begin.

The establishment rejects Judeo-Christian morality, consequentialism, logic, the historic dialectic, and science—then insists that because its orthodoxies alone are moral, logical, and scientific, all disagreement is not only dangerous but violently criminal. It believes that the Paris Climate Accord, a political document with clear short-term costs and dubious long-term benefits, is an expression of scientific consensus—but regards the unchallenged genetics proving that there are exactly two genders as a repressive social construct.

It denies the causal relationship between incentives and behavior that motivates people to work longer and harder when they keep more of their earnings—but believes that esoteric regulations hidden from public view can force “socially responsible” corporate behavior. It screams about a rape culture dominating its own progressive cultural institutions, but mocks and demonizes anyone suggesting a return to traditional morality.

It categorizes people in strictly racial terms, applies different rules to different races, rejects assertions that all lives matter, and labels as racist anyone who opposes racial discrimination. It observes that almost every gun murder in America occurs in gun-free or gun-controlled zones and advocates for more such zones. It claims that speech is violence and religion is bigotry. It can no longer fathom why someone with “nothing to hide” might value confidentiality.

The establishment cheers unelected judges who act as legislators or executives, justices who believe that ethnicity is a fine basis for deciding lawsuits, mayors who stand strong for violent illegal aliens, law enforcers who elevate their own moral compasses above the law, tech executives who censor speech, journalists who promote bias, and celebrities who show contempt for the country.

All in the name of freedom, justice, and the rule of law.

Take a moment to digest the perversity.

The list is endless. America’s elites are dangerously divorced from reality. When someone, like President Trump, points out that our Emperors have no clothes, it responds the only way it can: with deep denial, slander, and tu quoque attacks.

The battle lines are clear. President Trump champions common sense and a belief in America. America’s establishment promises a deeper descent into authoritarian madness. The outcome is uncertain. The future hangs in the balance.

Dangerous times indeed.

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Bruce Abramson, a technology lawyer in private practice in New York (www.bdabramson.com), is a senior fellow at the London Center for Policy Research. Jeff Ballabon is CEO of B2 Strategic (www.b2strategic.com) and a senior fellow at the Center for Statesmanship and Diplomacy.