Watching the Trump/Anti-Trump phenomenon is somewhat interesting in terms of popular culture and serious culture. However, we've seen this before - Sarah Palin making her opponents embarrass themselves hating, and the lack of price they paid with their own people comes to mind. There were few voices to cry halt from the left then. With Trump, there are some from the right very willing to criticise him. I'm not sure there are many voices from the left consistently criticising the anti-Trumpsters for going overboard, but then I wouldn't tend to see that in my usual online places anymore. Alan Dershowitz, maybe.
But that's all be fairly predictable, and will likely continue with nothing new to chew on. What has been new has been looking at myself and my own reactions. I have not liked Trump, and while his coarseness has been odious, that hasn't been what bothered me most. He lies, and he lies reflexively. He lies more often than the Clintons (though his style is different). Even habitual liars tell the truth most of the time. When someone asks "where's the butter?" is is a rare pathology which would attempt to consistently mislead people at that point. This is in fact part of how liars succeed. The do tell the truth most of the time and so have a lot of practice looking honest. They mostly lie by leaving things out. Hillary, John Kerry, and Al Gore had strong tendencies to be bullshit artists, making up stuff to look cooler or more important, but their lying about important stuff was usually far more precise and controlled. They would choose words carefully, they would answer related questions in order to avoid the point. They would flat-out deceive at times, but tried to avoid it as much as possible. Trump does some of that, but much less. He is much more blustery, off-the-cuff, and careless.
This bothers me, because you never know how deep this is going to go. He could do this about something very large. (This next part is not central to my main point, but I think needs to be said just for balance, to avoid giving the wrong impression.) To date, however, accusations against him tend to be big news for a little while, but when you push them for what they definitely are versus what they might possibly be they shrink. Trump Jr met with maybe a real spy-person! Therefore, he could have done very bad influenced-by-spy things, and it looks bad! Well yes, that might turn out to be so. But we don't know it to be so. When politicians lie, we immediately suspect - with good reason - that they are covering something big. I don't know if that applies with Donald.
Anyway, the point is about observing myself. I find that my default position in such matters is to look for personal cost, especially social cost, and respect the group that is paying that. Who pays a cost socially for opposing Trump? Almost no one in my entire circle, including my right-wing friends. There has been a nice social niche carved out for some conservatives to deplore Trump. Yes, the Trumpsters are louder, and maybe ruder, but there's nothing new here. Liberals, of course get a lot of support from each other, and even some surprising alliance from centrists and conservatives.
They pay no social cost. No new social cost, anyway.
There are families, and districts, and churches where a liberal can be treated badly, and nearly everyone has someone in their universe who can inflict pain on them for their beliefs. But I don't think being anti-Trump has added to the already-present cost of being anti-Tea Party, anti-Bush, anti-Republican, etc. Being pro-Trump does carry new social costs, however. You get harangued even more than you did for being for Romney or in the Tea Party or whatever. The liberals hate you more and now even some conservatives are making fun of you as well.
Trumpsters do pay a new social cost.
I knew reacting against social reward was part of my makeup, but I had not realised it was this strong. It doesn't logically extend to the outer limits, because some things are unpopular and subject to social cost for very good reasons, after all. Deploring is a weapon that allows us to forego violence or boycott over every little thing. But I don't think I'm going to back away from this position just yet. People will land in the places where it is easy to land, yet congratulate themselves on their courage. I find my sympathies lie in the opposite direction. If you are paying a cost, I want to know about that, and I think I am looking for ways to defend you from unfair criticism.