Trump lacks the facility to govern effectively, but he knows how to command the attention of the highly educated and dominate the news cycle. There is a reason he proved able, in a single election cycle, to vanquish both the entrenched Bush and Clinton dynasties. Trump’s flaws and transgressions are now well documented. Yet he has not perpetrated a catastrophe remotely on the scale of the Iraq war or the global financial crisis.Unfortunately, Mr Kotkin is not quite ready to see that it is the technocrats who laid the foundations for those catastrophes.
The Mueller report models the civic virtues that could enable American leaders to renew the country. The tools they would need are readily at hand, in the form of the country’s formidable democratic institutions and sound underlying mores of moderation, fairness, and common sense. That will not happen, of course, certainly not in the near term. For now, politics trumps technocracy.Moderation, fairness, and common sense are bourgeois virtues that confer evolutionary advantage.
Technocracy has mutated into scolding. The likes of Mr Kotkin might attempt to tell us that it is for our own good, but there's accumulating evidence that often it is not.