From Maureen Dowd’s 2.11 N.Y.Times column, “Trump’s Gold Lining”: “Donald Trump has indeed already made some of America Great Again. Just not the aspects he intended. He has breathed new zest into a wide range of things: feminism, liberalism, student activism, newspapers, cable news, protesters, bartenders, shrinks, Twitter, the A.C.L.U., S.N.L., town halls, George Orwell, Margaret Atwood, Hannah Arendt, Stephen Colbert, Nordstrom, the Federalist Papers, separation of powers, division of church and state, athletes and coaches taking political stands and Frederick Douglass.
“As Trump blusters about repealing Obamacare, many Americans have come to appreciate the benefits of the law more. Lena Dunham credited the ‘soul-crushing pain and devastation and hopelessness‘ of Trump with helping her get a svelte new figure. Trump may even have pierced the millennial malaise, as we see more millennials showing interest in running for office.
“Every time our daft new president tweets about the ‘failing’ New York Times, our digital subscriptions and stock price jump, driven by readers eager for help negotiating the disorienting Trumpeana Oceana Upside Down dimension rife with gaslighting, trolling, leaking, lying and conflicts.
“Similarly, whenever Trump rants about Alec Baldwin’s portrayal of him and tweets that Saturday Night Live is ‘not funny,’ ‘always a complete hit job’ and ‘really bad television!,’ the show’s ratings go up. They’re now at a 20-year high.
“Ordinarily staid Senate hearings for cabinet choices are now destination TV. As Trump puts forth people who want to plant Acme dynamite in the agencies they will head and as Republicans at the federal and state levels push their conservative agenda, Americans have a refreshed vigor for debating what’s at stake for the environment, education, civil rights and health insurance — and a new taste for passionate, cacophonous town halls.
“Trump has made facts great again. By distorting reality so relentlessly, he has put everyone on alert for alternative facts. As he alarms and exhausts, the Short-Fingered Vulgarian deserves this credit at least: We’re all on our toes now.”