Decius Revealed

Perhaps the most illuminating insight into the agenda of the Trump administration is to be derived from the anonymous writings of Michael Anton, formerly known as “Decius,” in his whimsically titled Journal of American Greatness. This latter fluttered by, enticing and agitating political junkies in something like the the way the anonymous publication of Primary Colors did once upon a time. Part of the fascination of the writings is that they are clearly highly intelligent, of no clear conservative pundit orientation although their author clearly moved among conservative pundits, and yet they present themselves as articulating “Trumpism,” which seemed simply impossible on the assumption that Trump was an unelectable buffoon.


The author of these writings is now a senior national-security official in the Trump White House, and arguably, what he has to say gives us the underlying unity behind the disparate positions we are coming to associate with Trump. The principal interest is that if they reveal the dominant thrust of the administration, what they reveal is not as a form of Putin-hugging isolationism, but nationalism on steroids. I will leave it to my fellow Poseidonians to determine whether we should be worried about that or not.


There’s nothing for it. You simply have to read them, and take comfort, or be harrowed, as your prior commitments dictate. Our new populist president has some intriguingly elitist friends, but at least they’re really angry elitists.