The Versailles metaphor has gone mainstream
It’s as if he were writing about the Bourbon court of the 1750s but doing so in 1791 while pretending that not much had really changed.
I would say 1788, the big blow up has yet to occur. The Bastille fortress still stands.
In my opinion Leibovich has written an unintentionally brilliant book. 500 years from now when people are trying to puzzle out what it was like they will turn to Leibovich and stare that any power elite could have been so vain and useless.
And clearly the Corrente community's analysis of Washington's power elite, that they resemble the French aristocracy has been accepted by the mainstream.