It’s funny how if you listen to the mainstream media every day, you would easily be led to believe that Donald Trump’s first year in office has been apocalyptically atrocious. Why, he is surely on course to go down in history as the worst president of the United States, according to the journalistic gods at the Washington Post and the New York Times.
In reality, Trump is now more popular than a slew of world leaders of the center-left and center-right who closely adhere to the traditional geopolitical global order and want to maintain the economic status quo: Indeed, Europe’s power trio of May, Macron, and Merkel are in dismal shape, according to a recent Zogby poll.
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It puts Angela Merkel at a marginal 40% approval, 49% disapproval, Macron at a troubling 28% approval and 52% disapproval, and May at a truly disturbing 28% approval and a whopping 61% disapproval. And now, even Canada’s boy wonder Justin Trudeau at 37.9% approval. That is a precipitous decline from last year, when he rode a wave of personal popularity to a stunning defeat of Stephen Harper’s Conservative Party, and a nationwide sweep from the Maritime Provinces to British Columbia.
Donald Trump’s approval rating in today’s Rasmussen Poll stands at 43%…hardly impressive, but respectable, particularly considering the quandary in which many of his counterparts find themselves.
So what is going on here? Why is it that Trump now has a higher approval rating from the American public than the leaders of the global order? And why is the American public routinely treated to a daily barrage of unfair and negative media coverage of Trump?
To be fair, some of this Trump has brought upon himself. A business mogul and a reality TV star, one would almost be led to believe that Trump’s mantra is: “All publicity is good publicity.” He shuns carefully crafted speeches for wild and rambling improvisation, and was hesitant to use a teleprompter, which was eventually foisted upon him by campaign manager Kellyanne Conway.
Huffington Post Senior White House Correspondent S.V. Date argues that Trump doesn’t want to act presidential: “Trump’s resistance to the machine [teleprompter] appears tied to his overarching concern to be entertaining and never boring, at all costs. He has said numerous times over his campaign that he could be ‘presidential’ if he wanted to, but his audience wouldn’t like it.”
And of course, what is so baffling to many of his own supporters is that Trump seems woefully ignorant of the reality that we live in an information age where any 12 year old with a smartphone can fact check anything that he says in a matter of seconds. When Trump speaks off-the-cuff he is wont to pepper his remarks with exaggerations, half-truths, and inaccuracies that the mainstream media regularly uses to pillory him.
It is a bit baffling as well that he doesn’t see how he is giving his sharpest critics ammunition by doing so.
That being said, the mainstream media’s treatment of Trump has been anything but unbiased and fair-minded. A recent study by the Media Research Center finds that 91% of recent media coverage of Trump has been negative. That is truly astounding.
It does not appear to be much of an exaggeration to say that the job description for a journalist at a mainstream media outlet in today’s America is as follows:
9am to 5pm: Look for information intended to further the ridicule, denigration, abuse, insulting, vilification, and ultimately impeachment, of Donald Trump.
News reporting now amounts to opinion pieces in disguise. It almost doesn’t matter what Trump does; the media will be all over it.
When Trump tries to live up to his campaign promises, for example draining the swamp and significantly reducing the size and scope of government, the media is there to unleash a howling chorus against it. Washington bureaucrats will fight to the gates of Hell to keep their high-paying jobs and outrageously generous benefits packages.
It’s only natural that the fawning and obsequious mainstream media who writes about their enthralling exploits in trying to regulate and control every day Americans will do everything to defend them as well.
Trump’s budgetary outlets were also based on a shocking idea to many who have been indoctrinated into the social justice cult: the concept that American people should be working and taking care of themselves; not relying on a social safety net and government handouts.
As budget director Mick Mulvaney noted, “If you are on food stamps and you are able-bodied, we need you to go work…If you are on disability insurance and you are not supposed to be — if you are not truly disabled — we need you to go back to work. We need everybody pulling in the same direction.”
The problems that Canada, France, Germany, and the UK are facing are similar to our own problems. We all have too many people who are relying on federal, state, and municipal governments. We all have too many people who are not working, even though they could and should. We have too many “beneficiaries” of government programs, and not enough “contributors” and demographics are a ticking time bomb that will imperil the entire notion of the Western European welfare state.
It is time for the United States, now, to make the painful but necessary changes to our budget and ensure that we do not end up with a permanent American underclass living off of the taxpayers. That is how Trump can serve as en example for his Canadian and European counterparts.
Our labor force participation rate is at 63%. Put another way, 37% of Americans are not working. What percentage of these people are relying largely or even exclusively, on the US taxpayer? What percentage of these people are perfectly capable of holding down a job?
It would be interesting to do a study on the subject.
What is clear: this issue is certain to sharply divide the right and the left…in the US, Canada, and Europe…over the course of coming generations.
The mainstream media will always be there to paint corporations and capitalism as the real global villains when the reality is exactly the opposite: corporations and capitalism, and the entrepreneurship that they thrive on, are the very drivers of eradication of poverty, hunger, disease, illiteracy, and crime.
If Trump can focus on that message, and explain why our free-market capitalism has been the greatest success story in global modern history, he has a good shot at remaining a more popular leader than his big government regulatory-friendly counterparts.
As President Calvin Coolidge once said, “The business of America is business.”
It’s high time we return to that mantra.