The Intercept has a banner headline today that represents everything I find unsettling about that site's occasional queasy flirtation with a vaguely pro-Trump angle in its political coverage. I get that Glenn Greenwald and the other leftists at Intercept are not going to end up endorsing Trump for president-- which I think would actually cause a tear in the fabric of space and time. I assume the spirit behind all this is simply something like: "Listen up, you self-righteous mainstream liberals, we get that Trump is awful and xenophobic and Islamophobic and all the rest of it, but so are most of the U.S.'s policies with regard to the civil liberties and human rights of Muslim people and the border, and we never seem to hear from you when the Establishment people are doing it -- and weirdly enough Trump actually seems better on a couple points than Hilary Clinton or the mainline GOP candidates do."
That's the idea, I think. I'm here today to remind us, though, that there have got to be limits to how much one toys with contrarian positions in the interests of unmasking hypocrisy. Doing so can lead to some scary places. As we are now a matter of hours away from a potential massive wave of Trump wins on Super Tuesday, and living in the wake of a raft of fresh obscenities from Trump-- including his recent refusal to condemn the KKK and white supremacist leader David Duke when asked to do so and his promise to change the nation's libel laws in order to be able to sue journalists who depict him negatively -- the time has long since passed for this kind of contrarian provocation. We are entering a world in which the possibility of Trump becoming an actual fascist dictator is less of a colorful journalistic point, less of a joke, less of a piece of alarmist rhetoric than it ever was before. What we need now is to circle the wagons, to form ranks. On this one we need all the forces of bourgeois democracy to pull together, plus the forces of Old Europe and Metternich and Guizot to boot-- and Lindsay Graham and whoever else we can get. Come one, come all! This is Popular Front time.