The Nub of It

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So I'm reading my FB feed and the word came down that Scott Pruitt was out at EPA. Many of my college classmates were on the thread and the common theme was the physical violence they wanted to inflict on Pruitt. I'm not going to reproduce it here, but apparently Pruitt needs to be kicked in the head, throat-punched, and more. Mind you, most of the people proposing such a course of action are in their mid-50s.

Then you have this guy:

This happened at a Whataburger in Texas. Charming fellow.

So why are people behaving this way? As usual, Victor Davis Hanson gets to the nub of it:

In 2009, Obama seemed to usher in a progressive revolution for a generation.

Democrats controlled the House. They had a supermajority in the Senate. Obama had a chance to ensure a liberal majority on the Supreme Court for years.

Democrats had gained on Republicans at the state and local levels. The media, universities, professional sports, Hollywood, and popular culture were all solidly left-wing.

A Republican had not won 51 percent of the popular vote in a presidential election since George H.W. Bush’s 1988 defeat of Democrat Michael Dukakis. Before 2016, Republicans had lost the popular vote in five of the previous six presidential elections.

And then visions of a generation of progressive grandeur abruptly vanished.

It was all supposed to have gone so differently. The Democrats had a tremendous opportunity, but it all went wrong. And the Democrats aren't taking things well, primarily because they're nursing rage more than anything else. Back to Hanson:

To progressives, Trump became not an opponent to be beaten with a better agenda, but an evil to be destroyed. Moderate Democrats were written off as dense; left-wing fringe elements were praised as clever.

Voters in 2016 bristled at redistribution, open borders, bigger government, and higher taxes, but progressives are now promising those voters even more of what they didn’t want.

Furious over the sudden and unexpected loss of power, enraged progressives have so far done almost everything to lose even more of it.

If the Democrats had a better agenda, they'd offer it. Instead, they're letting their freak flag fly and embracing full-on socialism. And they're harassing people. Even in 2009, when all looked lost, I never felt the rage or underlying despair that I'm seeing today. Put simply, like many conservatives I hold the tragic view of mankind (original sin, all that rot) but I am generally optimistic in my own worldview. The liberals I know think mankind can be perfected but seem to be falling into rage and despair because they can't break enough eggs to get that tasty omelet they ordered 9 years ago.