Victor Davis Hanson Private Papers

Angry Reader 01-08-2020

From An Angry Reader:

You are doing the same thing you claim Maddow is doing. Aren’t you an elite grouper, just on the other side of Maddow? You left out many facts in your article. You need to look in the mirror. You are old enough to know better. America needs to unite, what are you thinking? How are you making things better?

Dear Angry Reader Dr. Stady,

If you would just list one example in which I have erred about the dossier or the impeachment melodrama, you might be more believable. When I have appeared on television, I have tried to provide examples and facts to support what I have said, and I have done so without ad hominem attacks. Rachel Maddow, in contrast, invested her credibility in the Steele dossier for months; during that period a variety of disinterested journalists and observers had pointed out that Steele’s main contentions, from Mr. Cohen going to Prague to Carter Page being promised a huge multimillion payoff from the Russians, were simply false, well aside from the salacious fables. But Maddow and others continued to peddle such fantasies because they found them useful to their larger agendas of removing Trump. Don’t believe me, simply read the current series in the liberal Washington Post about the unprofessionalism of the media in its use of the dossier and the “collusion” fabrications.

Again, when you accuse me of omitting facts, and yet cannot produce a single example, then you fall into the same fallacy as all the others who refuse to look at unpleasant realities. As far as uniting the country, I think you need to look at the Left for the present acrimony. I opposed most of Obama’s policies, but I never would consider calling for violence against him, as is now a common Hollywood trope in the case of Trump. Obama used the DOJ to go after journalists, the IRS to hound political opponents, and allowed the FBI and CIA to surveil a political opponent in his last year in office. He bypassed the Senate to ram through the disastrous Iran treaty, and empowered Vladimir Putin with 5 years of disastrous reset appeasement, which included a hot mic quid pro quo deal with the Russians about dismantling US missile defense in Europe in exchange for Putin’s good behavior during his own reelection. All that was reprehensible and yet I don’t think impeachable—at least I never called for Obama’s impeachment or censure, even when by executive fiat he simply granted amnesties and stopped enforcing immigration laws—in a manner he had earlier warned was either illegal or unethical.

The country is disunited. But the venom came from those who called the middle classes, deplorables, irredeemables, crazies, and dregs. And thus I suggest you redirect your concerns to the Left and ask them to turn down the heat and simply seek to persuade Americans of their cause in November 2020, rather than engage in the current celebrity assassination chic, the psychodramas of invoking the 25th Amendment, the Mueller circus, and now the suspended-in-animation impeachment.

Victor Davis Hanson

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About Victor Davis Hanson

Victor Davis Hanson is the Martin and Illie Anderson Senior Fellow in Residence in Classics and Military History at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, a professor of Classics Emeritus at California State University, Fresno, and a nationally syndicated columnist for Tribune Media Services. He is also the Wayne & Marcia Buske Distinguished Fellow in History, Hillsdale College, where he teaches each fall semester courses in military history and classical culture.

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