By Jack Holmes
While the stock market tumbles, even after a tremendous tax cut that led to $1 trillion in corporate stock buybacks and a two-cent-per-hour raise for workers, there is no disputing one victory for Donald Trump, American president: he won The War on Christmas. Granted, The War was not real—it was an outbreak of mass delusion that escaped from the fever swamps of right-wing resentment programming on Fox News and talk radio. Nobody stopped saying “Merry Christmas” just because some malls changed their signs to say “Happy Holidays.” And because only some people believed this was happening, only those people were truly fighting The War.
Still, The War does appear to be over—if only because the people who made it up don’t talk about it nearly as much anymore. Fox News gave the game away almost two years ago now when the network sent out holiday cards that read “Seasons Greetings”—an egregious break with the channel’s totally good-faith programming on-air. (Perhaps it was an attempt to make Fox employees of all faiths and backgrounds feel included. Weird!) But nobody can match Donald Trump’s commitment to cultural resentment.
This is the guy who debuted an improbable Americana mashup this year with The War on Christmas in July. And now his 2020 re-election campaign—which has already been cooking for close to two years—is fundraising off The War.
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