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Indeed, the chronic awfulness of almost every other aspect of the fight with Britain stood in high contrast to Jackson’s part in it.Military ineptitude, political dissent verging on treason, and the humiliation of the sacked capital of Washington, D. all constituted the American story of the war—at least until Jackson won the Creek War of 1813-14 and then proceeded to crush the Duke of Wellington’s veterans on the Chalmette Plain.
But when “animals” attack the US, he rejects virtually any moral limits on America’s response. Sure, because “You’re not going to win if we’re soft and…they have no rules.” Using nuclear weapons? In a quintessentially Jacksonian moment, former Indiana basketball coach Bobby Knight praised Trump last month for being like Truman, who had “the guts to drop the bomb in 1944.”But this alone doesn’t capture Trump’s appeal. He also appears to channel the Jacksonian ethic in his personal conduct.
Trump describes his political struggle in the same Hobbesian terms as he describes America’s struggle in the world.
But in just about all cases I’ve been responding to what they did to me.”It’s a claim Trump has made before. He minds his own business until someone else launches a dastardly attack. To many Republicans, it’s a tremendously appealing self-self-depiction. Because it’s the way they depict the United States.
Jacksonians, Mead argues, view America as a country that just wants to be left alone.
Such deeds reminded Americans of what they had believed during their first fight with Britain: that virtue was more important than martial skill in the winning of wars. He was born, just weeks after his father’s death, into a hardscrabble life worsened by the Revolutionary War, which killed his brothers and mother and very nearly killed him.
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That he survived seemed to make him stronger and more daring and he grew into the kind of self-made man whom Jackson’s fellow countrymen knew firsthand—both in themselves and their neighbors.
They have little interest in the “Hamiltonian” project of prying other countries open to American commerce or the “Wilsonian” project of spreading democracy and liberty across the globe.
But when attacked, especially by what they consider dishonorable foes, Jacksonians believe that “wars must be fought with all available force.
Asked by Kelly why he insults his opponents, Trump responded that, “I view myself as a person who like everyone else is fighting for survival.” He invariably describes himself as an innocent besieged by brutal, unscrupulous assailants.
“I’ve been attacked pretty viciously by some of these guys,” he said last August about his GOP foes.