Live from Trumpland: David Frum: Donald Trump and the Seven Broken Guardrails of Democracy:
Many conservatives and Republicans recognize Trump as a disaster for their institutions and their ideals. Yet they have found it impossible to protect things they hold dear...
...in large part because they have continued to fix all blame outward and elsewhere. “President Obama created Donald Trump,” charged Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal in a March 3, 2016, op-ed. To the extent that Donald Trump has policies, I’m probably more sympathetic to them than Jindal is. Much of the traditional conservative ideology was obsolete. Migration should be reduced. Americans reasonably depend on Medicare and Social Security. It’s time to move past culture wars on private sexual behavior.
Policy, however, is not the first or second or third impetus of the Trump campaign. It’s driven by something else—and the source of that something is found inside the conservative and Republican world, not outside. The Trump phenomenon is the effect of many causes. Yet overhanging all the causes is the central question: Why did Republicans and conservatives react to those causes as they did? There were alternatives. Of all the alternatives for their post-Obama future, Republicans and conservatives selected the most self-destructive of the options before them. Why? What went wrong? That will be the excruciating mystery to ponder during the long and difficult work of reconstruction ahead.