Trump is the downside of forty years of WSJ ed page comment too often just like his: outrageous, sulfurous, and, all too often, half-baked.The blog called Economic Principals is often one of my teachers of economic history. Currently, the blogger there is on fire with American politics instead, but his take continues to be original. In this column, he argues that the Republican moral and intellectual collapse began with someone called Robert Bartley, of whom I'd never heard, Bartley edited the Wall Street Journal for a long time, and the quote above sums up EP's impression of his career.
At almost the same time as EP, Paul Krugman, who is more clearly on the progressive side in American politics, offered a similar history of how and when the Republican Party committed itself to dangerous nonsense as policy:
What I want to talk about is when, exactly, the GOP went over the edge. Obviously it didn’t happen all at once. But I think the real watershed came in 1980-81, when supply-side economics became the party’s official doctrine.