And it is for individual freedom, not communism!
Karl Marx was wrong. When at last the working class rises, it is not for socialism, internationalism and equality: it is for capitalism, the nation-state and liberty.
Donald Trump’s movement – he and his followers are calling it a revolution – is a genuine proletarian uprising, perhaps the first in history. It is very hard to find an historical precedent for a downtrodden class actually rising spontaneously in protest against the ruling class without being incited to it by dissident members of the ruling class itself.
The libertarian Ilana Mercer writes at Townhall about “the disenfanchisement of the poor whites of America”:
The present ideology on immigration considers all whites, rich or poor, a privileged, “fungible monolith”. This outlook brooks little or no consideration of lives lived in penury for over a century. In particular: It overlooks the descendants of poor white Southern sharecroppers who did not own slaves, but were devastated by the War Between the States both “in human and economic terms”. Even now, this sizeable segment of the South has yet to recover; its attainments with respect to education and income mirror those of the region’s African-Americans, with one distinction: poor whites are barred from affirmative action programs.
These are the people – this is the DEMOS – whose chosen leader Trump is. Sure, he is a rich man, but he is not a member of the ruling elite – he is a builder. A very successful builder. No, he does not phrase his ideas felicitously. He does not develop an argument. He utters cries, he repeats himself. He expresses the half-formed, inadequately worded, but deeply and painfully felt opinions and desires of unconsidered people.
He speaks often of the plight of the poor blacks in the inner cities of America. And the poor Latinos. He is far from being a “racist” – the favorite boo-word of the Left.
The Ivy-League conservatives and leaders of the Republican party do not, many of them, “get it”. They feel threatened, along with their fellow members of the ruling class in the laughably named “Democratic Party”.
But there are a few who do.
Steven Hayward (yes, the same admirable Steven Hayward of PowerLine) writes at the Weekly Standard:
Win or lose, [Trump] has divided and may yet shatter the conservative movement …
Hayward says he does not believe Trump will win. He is interested in why a number of intellectuals he highly respects wish that he will.
Several Claremont eminentos appear prominently on the recent list of “Scholars and Writers for Trump,” including Charles Kesler, Larry Arnn, Thomas West, Hadley Arkes, Brian Kennedy, and John Eastman. … It is also worth adding that the Claremonsters on this list are typically at odds with many of their fellow signatories who hail from the “paleocon” and libertarian neighborhoods of the right — another indication of the extraordinary ideological scrambling effect of the Trump campaign.
Knowing my own deep Claremont roots — I earned a Ph.D. from the Claremont Graduate School while working at the Claremont Institute in the 1980s — several people have asked me to explain: “How is it that a group known for its emphasis on the idea of high statesmanship, and on the importance of serious political rhetoric, can champion Trump?” …
The Claremont sympathy for Trump needs to be better understood, because it differs fundamentally from the typical candidate scoring mentioned above. If Trump can’t live up to the idiosyncratic Claremont understanding of the meaning of his candidacy, the Trump phenomenon nonetheless opens a window onto the failures of conservatism that made Trump’s candidacy possible and perhaps necessary. Even if you reject Trump, there are vital things to be learned from him if we are to confront the crisis of our time. …
What is that crisis? It’s not the litany of items that usually come to mind—the $20 trillion national debt, economic stagnation, runaway regulation, political correctness and identity politics run amok, unchecked immigration that threatens to work a demographic-political revolution, and confused or unserious policy toward radical Islamic terrorism. These are mere symptoms of a much deeper but poorly understood problem. It can be stated directly in one sentence: Elections no longer change the character of our government. …
The closer source of the Claremont sympathy for Trump (though it should be noted that they are far from unanimous — several Claremonsters are Never Trumpers) is found in another aspect of the Claremont argument about which there is near-complete harmony among East, West, and everyone in-between: the insidious political character of the “administrative state”, a phrase once confined chiefly to the ranks of conservative political scientists, but which has broken out into common parlance. It refers not simply to large bureaucracy, but to the way in which the constitutional separation of powers has been steadily eroded by the delegation of more and more lawmaking to a virtual “fourth branch” of government [the bureaucracy]. …
Who should rule? The premise of the Constitution is that the people should rule. The premise of the administrative state, explicitly expressed by Woodrow Wilson and other Progressive-era theorists, is that experts should rule, in a new administrative form largely sealed off from political influence, i.e., sealed off from the people. At some point, it amounts to government without the consent of the governed, a simple fact that surprisingly few conservative politicians perceive. Ronald Reagan was, naturally, a conspicuous exception, noting in 1981 in his first Inaugural Address, “It is time to check and reverse the growth of government, which shows signs of having grown beyond the consent of the governed.” …
The salient political fact is this: No matter who wins elections nowadays, the experts in the agencies rule and every day extend their rule further, even under Republican presidents ostensibly committed to resisting this advance. We still nominally choose our rulers, but they don’t reflect our majority opinions. No wonder more and more conservatives regard the GOP leadership in Washington as “collaborationists” with Democrats. …
Marini [Prof. John Marini of the University of Nevada, Reno, “a Claremont Institute stalwart”], a Trump supporter, told me last week, “Public opinion is in the hands of a national elite. That public opinion, the whole of the public discourse about what is political in America, is in the hands of very few. There’s no way in which you have genuine diversity of opinion that arises from the offices that are meant to represent it.” A good example of the defensive crouch of Republicans accepting the elite-defined boundaries of acceptable opinion was Sen. Ted Cruz’s comment shortly after the 2012 election that conservative social policy must pass through “a Rawlsian lens”, an astonishing concession to the supercharged egalitarian philosophy at the heart of contemporary leftism. …
Trump’s disruptive potential explains therefore his attraction for Claremonsters. More than just a rebuke to political correctness and identity politics, a Trump victory would be, in their eyes, a vehicle for reasserting the sovereignty of the people and withdrawal of consent for the administrative state and the suffocating boundaries of acceptable opinion backing it up. A large number of Americans have responded positively to Trump’s slogan “Make America Great Again” because they too see Trump as a forceful tribune against the slow-motion desiccation of the country under the steady advance of liberalism. …
The Trump disruption thesis is not held uniquely by the Claremonsters. David Gelernter offered a version of this argument in the Wall Street Journal last weekend, and Victor Davis Hanson has been arguing along these lines for months. …
The exacting demands of statesmanship have seldom been put better than by Hillsdale’s Thomas G. West, one of the most fervent Claremont pro-Trumpers, in a 1986 essay: “A president who would successfully lead the nation back to constitutional government must have the right character, be able to present the right speeches, and undertake the right actions to guide the people to elect a new kind of Congress.” Last week, I asked West whether and how Trump could measure up to this understanding of what is necessary today. West points to what he calls Trump’s “civic courage”, i.e., his intransigence in the face of relentless attacks, his willingness to call out radical Islamic extremism by name while noting the guilt-infused reluctance of Obama and Hillary Clinton to do so, his willingness to question the bipartisan failures of foreign policy over the last 25 years, and his direct rebuke to the collapse of the rule of law in cities with large black populations. West thinks Trump’s breathtaking stubbornness and shocking candor are the ingredients for the kind of restorative statesmanship the times demand. …
That Trump can be made out to be the only candidate since Reagan who has represented a fundamental challenge to the status quo puts in stark relief the attenuation of conservative political thought and action over the last 20 years and the near-complete failure of aspiring Republican presidents to marry their ambition to a serious understanding of why the republic is in danger. …
Lincoln famously said in 1854, “Our republican robe is soiled.” We need only capitalize one word to adapt it to our time: “Our Republican robe is soiled.” The cleanup is going to be excruciating. But nothing is more necessary and important.
As intellectuals ourselves, we heartily agree. And we want Donald Trump to win.
Why was Obama, the Islam-loving communist, twice voted into the presidency of the capitalist, Islam-attacked, United States?
Why do most Americans “think” that Obama is doing a good job – though they know the economy is bad, millions are unemployed, businesses are overburdened with regulations, travelers are manhandled and humiliated at airports, an American ambassador was killed abroad with impunity, the Taliban is back in business in Afghanistan, the Middle East is in flames since Obama assisted the displacement of allied rulers with Islamic fundamentalists … and so on and on?
Why do millions of Americans “think” that economic equality is morally desirable?
Why are tens of millions content to live on state support without attempting to improve their standard of living by their own efforts?
Why do millions of university students in America admire intellectuals who hate America, such as Howard Zinn, Noam Chomsky, Edward Said, and make an icon out of the sadistic mass-murderer Che Guevara?
Why? Because they’ve been told to. They’ve been told that good people do and “think” these things. They want to be good. They believe what they’ve been taught.
The same answer applies to: Why Muslim women believe they must put up with being sexually mutilated and enslaved to men. Why multitudes the world over believe that there was a nation called Palestinians who were driven off their land by aggressive usurping Jews. Why Christians believe that a man who once lived and died lives on as one part of a three-part god. Why Muslims and Christians imagine that when you are dead you are still alive in another place. Why Jews believe that their benign and omnipotent God has some unknowable but just purpose in having six million of them enslaved, starved, tortured and murdered by Nazis.
They believe these things because they were taught them. All this was drummed into them. They were raised to know that that is how it ought to be.
Few if any ideas are easy to spread. To get an idea accepted by large numbers of people takes patience, persistence, conviction, tireless energy on the part of those who want to spread it. The idea need not make good sense, be reasonable, come with proofs that it will work as its advocates say it will. It doesn’t even have to appeal strongly to the emotions. It just needs to become what “everybody” accepts.
If you want your idea to prevail over others, this is what it takes. First the conviction that it is right and everyone should know it. Next, a decision to spread it. Then energy, persistence, patience – and eventually force.
What made Christianity catch on? It wasn’t the life-style – poor, austere, hard, humble. Even the promise of eternal life was not a reliable recommendation as anyone’s eternity could as easily be endless agony as endless bliss (it was and is a 50-50 tossup). The theology was so hard to make sense of that the Church itself to this day has not settled it. And the morality it demanded was against human nature. So what made it succeed? Energy, persistence, patience, indoctrination, force.
See how long it took. From the time St Paul invented “Jesus Christ” to the time the emperor of Rome (Constantine) accepted the new god and the doctrines that had accreted to him, thus making it fashionable to be Christian (just a few decades before force was applied and it became compulsory), nearly three hundred years had passed. Three hundred years of persistent, patient, energetic proselytizing. Even then, it was not securely implanted in the minds of the subjects. One Emperor – Julian – came along and actually tried to reverse the trend by suppressing Christianity and re-instating paganism. He didn’t have enough time. He died in battle, his successors went back to favoring Christianity, and the Emperor Theodosius decreed that Christianity was to be the religion of the state. With him the final phase of force arrived.
Marxist Communism took less time to get a real grip on the minds of multitudes. Means of communications had speeded up considerably between the 4th and the 19th centuries, but still it took half a century (if one arbitrarily dates it from the first publication of Marx’s Das Kapital in 1867 to the success of the Bolshevik revolution in 1917). And still the same method had to be employed: energetic, patient, persistent proselytizing. Much repetition was required. The fever of enthusiasm had to be caught by two generations of intellectuals before the infection became a pandemic. Then came force.
The creed must become the norm. So pervasive must the doctrine be that anybody who does not subscribe to it wholeheartedly will appear egregious; an oddball, a rebel, a danger to everyone else and even to himself. The orthodoxy must be accepted without question as good, so anyone who opposes it is ipso facto a bad person.
By the late 20th century communications had become even faster, so the New Left, rising in 1968, could achieve the peaks of power in Europe in less than thirty years, and in America in forty years. It started as a weak revolutionary movement which brought nothing good with it to Western Europe and America, but much that was bad: recreational drugs, AIDS, and terrorism as self-expression. New Leftists complained that they had too much freedom, too much choice, that tolerance of their politics was repressive. And this irrational case was widely accepted, even while, on the other side of the iron curtain, a young man burnt himself to death to protest against the lack of freedom, choice, and tolerance.
The New Left movement was ignorant, blind, puerile, unreasonable, sadistic – yet it became, it has become, the prevailing belief-system of the greater part of the Western world, and at present in almost all “free” countries the standard ideology (or religion) of the state, no matter what political party is in power. How?
The plan was made. The plan was put into execution. Gramsci supplied the phrase for the overall strategy: “The Long March through the Institutions”. It wasn’t enough that the New Leftists should protest, should threaten and carry out violent attacks, should shout and write and display their slogans. They must take over the institutions of power, everyone of them: the smallest citizens’ groupings – such as library committees – were not too small. But none were too big. Town councils had to be infiltrated and eventually dominated; then newspapers, radio and TV channels; boards of education very importantly; the schools, the universities; the civil service; the law courts; a major political party; then the country’s legislative body, and eventually the pinnacles of power, prime ministerships, presidencies. Police forces and the military were formidable challenges. The tactic was first to discredit them and pressure them from outside by means of public opinion guided by the converted press; then to infiltrate them; finally bend them from within to conform to the doctrine and advance the cause.
Meanwhile books, films, articles, lessons, lectures, systems of reward, prizes must all promote the cause. It took decades, but it succeeded. Even in America now there have been at least two generations raised on New Left doctrine through schools, universities, books, films, the press, and TV.
How otherwise could the free Western world, whose policies and armies opposed the oppressing, enslaving Communist Eastern world, have been successfully converted to the very doctrine that oppressed, enslaved, tortured and mass murdered? It didn’t take reason. It didn’t take persuasion. The idea was no more innately and manifestly true and good than the idea of Christianity. But as in the case of spreading Christianity, it took conviction, decision, planning, energy, persistence, repetition, and finally force.
Only Leftist doctrine – government control of the economy, government provision of welfare, confiscatory and punitive taxation – is politically correct now in America. Collectivist thinking is the norm. Good people vote left. (When, in 2008, a Californian woman came upon a stall set up on a main street to canvass votes for the Republican presidential candidate John McCain, she called the police, and was astonished to learn that to solicit public support for the anti-collectivist Republican Party was not illegal.) Again, as with Christianity, the allegiance to the doctrine has little or nothing to do with its ideas. Most adherents could not explain what the ideas are. But they know that good people find them good, that good people vote for them. And that is all they need to know. Who doesn’t want to think of himself as a good person?
But the question of how did this become the case has not been fully answered. There is another aspect to the story. In order for one doctrine to succeed, it is necessary for other, counter doctrines to fail. If the ancient world had had enough confidence in paganism, enough enthusiasm for it, hadn’t taken it for granted, hadn’t become bored with it, hadn’t ignored the Christian missionaries with their crazy talk, could the weird, obscure, muddled, sorrowful, other-worldly new religion of Christianity have prevailed?
And the success of Leftism now – would it have happened if the conservative Right had been paying attention? Remember that old saying that “the price of liberty is eternal vigilance”? Well, the Right was not being vigilant. It didn’t bother to argue against political correctness. It disregarded the cynical shenanigans going on in the United Nations as if it were nothing but a zoo housing many clamorous beasts who were safely confined and could in no way threaten American life, liberty or happiness. If it was made to feel now and then the bullying, deceitful, sly, sometimes violent tactics of the Left, it shrugged them off. Conservatives went on being civil and preferring honesty when the world’s mood had changed to favoring lies and abuse. They put their confidence in the fact that America had been founded as the political embodiment of the idea of personal freedom; had demonstrated to the world – forever, they believed – that freedom brought prosperity and might and stunning innovation. They assumed that the rightness of individual liberty, the capitalist system, and government by the people had been established forever. So strong and free a country could afford to be tolerant. Let some wild, immature, misguided persons preach despotism (Communism, Socialism, Progressivism, Greenism, whatever), the system was strong enough to be hospitable to alien ideas, and to allow dissent or even rebellion. Tested, it would prove itself inviolable. It could not only withstand opposition, it could absorb it and dissolve it. No special effort was required. American history was on the side of those who would defend freedom and the constitution. The separation of powers would protect them. The free press would dilute propaganda. Open enquiry in the academies would ensure that all points of view were argued and the most rational, the most humane, would persuade serious scholars. But they were wrong.
In their complacency, conservatives did not even notice the Long March. They could not mark its stations of success. Even now there are deluded Republicans who have not absorbed the fact that most Americans like collectivism; that they don’t object to electoral fraud; that they accept a failing economy; that many would rather live on government handouts than become rich; that being rich has become a morally bad thing; that it’s okay for foreign powers to develop weapons that can kill vast numbers of Americans; that the press does not report what is happening in the world but only what it wants to happen; that courts of law are willing to prefer foreign law to the Constitution; that it doesn’t matter if American representatives abroad are attacked and murdered; that freedom has become a term worthy only of contempt; that American history is a trail of shame; that a cruel religion is being allowed to seep through the body politic, and is protected and advanced by the government itself.
But now millions of conservatives are waking up and are asking, how did this happen? It happened because people patiently, energetically, persistently planned it and made it happen.
What can we do about it, they ask themselves and each other.
What they have to do about it is change the minds of the people. First they must be sure that they want the free republic the founders established; that they want to maintain free markets; that they don’t want a welfare state; that they do want to preserve national defenses; that they want indoctrination in the schools to stop; that they want to forbid the application of foreign law; that they do not want to go on funding an institution – the UN – that consistently works against their interests. Then they must decide that their political philosophy is right, uniquely right, and must be implemented at any and all costs. Then they must start teaching it. With energy, persistence, patience and fiery enthusiasm. It will take time. But that is the only way. Teach, preach, argue, use every method that works. Give up the idea that it’s better to be gentlemanly than to sink to using the methods of the opposition; that if you do as they do you will have betrayed the very values that you are fighting for. They have made the fight low and dirty. Get down in the dirt and fight it.
How badly does the conservative right want to win power in America? How important is it to them that they should?
If it is important, tell the voters, tell the children that the free market is the only means of creating general prosperity, and why. Tell them that central planning of an economy cannot work, and why. Tell them why competition is good for everyone, producers and consumers alike.
Tell them what profit is and why it is essential for ensuring abundance.
Tell them that only where people are free can there be discovery and innovation, improvement in everyone’s daily life, better technology, the advance of civilization. Explain why. Show them the proofs of history.
Tell them the truth about life in the Third World. Not politically correct sentimental drivel, but the actual awful facts about life in most other countries.
Tell them why impartial judgment is the only means to justice; why all sane adult citizens must be treated equally by the law; why people must be judged by their actions, not their intentions or feelings.
Tell them why government should be kept small and its powers limited. Tell them what the essential tasks of government are: protection of the nation, of the individual, of liberty, of the rule of law itself. And why governments should not be allowed more power and money than it needs to fulfill its few essential functions.
Shout down the shouters. Tell Muslims what is wrong with their creed and why American secularism is better. Don’t allow them to build a protective wall around themselves to shut out criticism of their absurd and savage beliefs.
Tolerate only the tolerant and tolerable.
It will take time. Start now. Stop short of force. But tell them.
Newton’s Third Law of Motion states: For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.
The Left in power has been brutal. Throughout the West, in government, in the media, in the academy, in the law courts, in society generally, wherever the Left is dominant, it is aggressive, dishonest, unjust, discriminatory, uncivilized. It is dour, it is harsh, it is smug, it is solemn, and with all that it is also boring.
The unmannerly Left has given rise to the unmannerly Alt Right.
These are extracts from a speech by Milo Yiannopoulos, telling the clucking old women of both sexes and all ages who want to get rid of the mocking Alt Right what they must do to achieve that end:
Now, various media and political figures have tried to define the alt-right, with varying degrees of accuracy, over the past few weeks. Which is to say no accuracy at all.
Hillary Clinton, just before reading out some of my headlines, called the alt-right an “emerging racist ideology”. Of course, she also constantly hallucinates about a “vast right wing conspiracy” …
According to Vox, the alt-right is “a movement lurking in Reddit and 4chan threads and in community blogs and forums, a movement of right-wingers who openly argue that democracy is a joke”.
This is typically nonsensical bilge from Vox, given that the alt-right were also apparently responsible for the outcome of the Brexit referendum.
Salon is more succinct. “The alt-right, also known as white nationalism.” …
Almost everything you read about the alt-right is wrong. It isn’t just white nationalists. … And the movement certainly isn’t led by me — although the media seems determined to crown me its queen. …
Just to be clear, I don’t consider myself a member of the alt-right. …
Of course, to the mainstream media, reporting accurately on the alt-right, and understanding the movement’s nuances instead of just shrieking “RACISTS”, is tantamount to leading the movement. …
Yes … there are racists in the alt-right — but the movement is much bigger than just them.
The left’s motivations in branding the alt-right as skinheads with Twitter accounts are easier to understand when you realize that the left is responsible for creating it in the first place, as I’ll explain in a moment.
The problem is, they’re smearing an entire political generation as racist, and they don’t care who gets hurt in the process.
The inability of the establishment right to decipher the movement is slightly different — they just don’t get it. I don’t think any of the people at National Review are bad people — they just don’t understand what they’re seeing. They don’t get cultural politics, they don’t get Millennial politics, and thus they don’t get the alt-right. The only tools they have to understand the movement are those handed to them by the political left. …
The media desperately wants to define the alt-right by the worst 5 percent of its members. They take the genuinely anti-semitic racists … and use them to define the whole movement. The left is obsessed by white supremacy, which in reality makes up an infinitesimally small number of people.
I see two primary motivating factors behind the rise of the alt right.
The first is a millennial generation that’s fed up with identity politics and its hypocrisies.
I see old-school conservatives who have had enough of mainstream politicians ignoring their concerns about immigration and cultural politics. I see intellectuals desperate to discuss dangerous, forbidden ideas as the left tries to make the overton window narrower and narrower.
And millennials are proving phenomenally talented at converting their parents, who might be disaffected republicans or tea partiers with Alt-Right thinking. …
The second is anti-white racism.
Progressives in America today believe that you can’t be racist unless you’re white, or unless you have what they call “prejudice plus power”. This argument, dreamed up in gender and African studies departments, does nothing more than give people an excuse to attack others for their gender, their sexual orientation, or the color of their skin, in the same way that eugenics gave people an excuse to view others as subhuman nearly a century ago.
Ironically so-called white privilege is the privilege to be discriminated against.
The idea that women and minorities, who have advocates for their special status in every university, every political party, and every media organization don’t have power behind their prejudices is also, frankly, absurd.
Racism is everywhere in America today. So is sexism. It’s in our university faculties.
But it’s not the racism you think.
It’s on the pages of the Washington Post. It’s on the pages of The Guardian. It’s in Hollywood. It’s on MSNBC.
Let me read you some statements which highlight the sort of casual racism and sexism that is deemed acceptable by the establishment today.
“The Beginning Of The End For Angry White Males.”
“Feminists Don’t Hate Men, But It Wouldn’t Matter If We Did.”
“When Whites Just Don’t Get It”
“As A White Man, I’m Surprised More Women Aren’t Tweeting The Hashtag #KillAllWhiteMen”
“Women Should Speak First In Class, Says SMU Professor. Really, Do Men Have To Speak At All?”
These are headlines from The Guardian, The New York Times, The Independent, The National Post, and the Chicago Tribune.
The key question behind all this is: are we going to have identity politics for everyone, or identity politics for no-one?
At the moment, we have identity politics for everyone except white men. If you advocate for men’s issues, The Guardian will call you a misogynist and a sexist. If you advocate for whites, The Guardian and National Review, and everyone else will call you a racist.
Meanwhile, other groups – women, gays, blacks, Muslims – are not only allowed to advocate for their group’s interests, but allowed to be openly racist and sexist towards white men.
When they do so, they receive support from the Silicon Valley’s tech giants, who manage an increasing share of our lives. When a parody group called the Feminist Software Foundation tried to create a browser extension that took all instances of “white men” in articles and changed them to “Jews” — making Guardian articles read like Mein Kampf — the extension was banned from both Chrome and Firefox.
Not for antisemitism, you understand. But for showing the Left up as racists.
I’d prefer we had no identity politics at all and that we judged people, as someone once said, not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. But if you’re going to have identity politics, you have to have them for everybody.
You might not like the result.
The younger, millennial members of the alt-right are, for the most part, not white nationalists. But they’re being pushed toward racial humor by the progressive left.
The left is responsible for me. The left is responsible for the rise of Donald Trump. The left created the alt-right.
If you’re on the Left, and you’re looking out at the alt-right with horror, and want to destroy it, guess what? You probably can.
Here’s the bad news: your current tactics aren’t working, and are in fact having the opposite of their intended effect. Name-calling, public shaming, and tearing your hair out over Pepe the Frog* is simply ineffective and is enlarging the ranks of the troll army every day you continue to do it.
Here’s the good news: there are a few simple things you can do to nuke the movement.
I’m happy to tell you what they are, because I know you’re not going to do any of them.
But I want to you to listen, because I want you to understand how your actions created this phenomenon.
The first thing you have to do is stop being hypocrites.
Double standards are everywhere in coverage of the alt-right. Whenever confronted with a left wing or minority- radical movement, the Establishment will wring its hand about addressing the “root causes”. But they accuse anyone who does the same for the alt-right as necessarily endorsing the worst of its proponents.
Just look at the media’s coverage of Black Lives Matter, and how it gives a pass to horrifying behavior, behavior that goes far beyond what the alt-right does on Twitter. Oh, someone with an anime avatar tweeted a racial caricature at you? That’s nice — Black Lives Matter has killed police officers.
And they’re still being championed by the mainstream press. Is it any wonder that people sympathize with the alt-right, when they’re at the losing end of such a blatant double standard?
And again you push older people to the alt-right. Who do you think stopped giving millions of dollars to Mizzou following their Black Lives Matter protests? Here is a hint — it wasn’t jobless gender studies majors, or young engineers whose job was replaced by an H-1B visa holder, it was established donors ranging in age from 40-65.
It’s double standards that are at least in part fuelling the alt-right, and not Donald Trump. If you think the alt-right is going to evaporate with the God Emperor, think again.
The genie is not going back in the bottle. And I don’t care if I just appropriated the culture of some Arab country by saying that, or infringed on a Disney company trademark for that matter.
Here’s one for Hillary Clinton: you gotta stop calling half the country racists.
Establishment columnists argue that responding to racism with racism is wrong, but this is an oversimplification of what’s going on with the alt-right. …
The millennials in particular are simply responding to real racism with trolling, as a means to expose the double standard. When the double standard disappears, I expect this “performative racism” if you like, will too.
Performative racism doesn’t mean racism-lite. It means memes. It means jokes. It means 19 year old boys saying stuff to get a reaction. …
What I do see is a lot of young people trying to get a reaction. That’s the Troll Manifesto: find something that a person in power is sensitive about, rightly or wrongly, and joke about it relentlessly until they acknowledge you. …
People ask why the alt right has to be so mean and why I make mean remarks about people.
Because it’s fun! And progressives made it fun by finger wagging.
The Left has demonized and censored people who speak about taboo issues respectfully and seriously. … If you’re going to get ostracized for having un-PC views no matter how you present them, why not be an asshole about it?
To stop the mayhem, the establishment needs to do one very simple thing: stop punishing people for jokes. Stop punishing people for ideas. And stop other people from doing so as well. The bigger of a taboo you make something, the more attractive it is for young pranksters.
I’m going to read out a quote from early alt-right intellectual, the Jewish entrepreneur and writer Curtis Yarvin:
“If you spend 75 years building a pseudo-religion around anything – an ethnic group, a plaster saint, sexual chastity or the Flying Spaghetti Monster – don’t be surprised when clever 19-year-olds discover that insulting it is now the funniest thing in the world. Because it is”
The establishment has done exactly that. They’ve built a religion around left-wing identity politics, complete with blasphemous words and excommunication. And, surprise surprise, shattering those quasi-religious taboos has become hilarious for a huge section of the youth.
The thing I most hate about the Left is that they want to stop us laughing – to prescribe which jokes are okay and which are not okay to make in public and to draw artificial lines around certain subjects. I find all sorts of inappropriate things funny. Islam, trannies, AIDS.
These are all innately hilarious things. Now and again I even enjoy a good rape joke — especially if I’m the butt of it. Telling me I’m not allowed to laugh at something does not make it unfunny. …
Sir Tim Hunt, a British chemist … was working on the cure for cancer before he abruptly became the target of a feminist sting operation.
They deliberately and maliciously took a section of his speech to a room of female South Korean scientists out of context, in which he jokes about women in laboratories “falling in love and crying all the time”. The comment was meant to mock outdated sexist attitudes, but it was presented by feminists as a serious claim on the part of Tim Hunt.
The lie was swallowed by the academic establishment, which forced Hunt to resign from his position at University College London. It took months and months of relentless efforts from conservatives and moderates to clear his name. ..,
There are countless others. … There was also Razib Khan, a geneticist who lost an opportunity at the New York Times over his views on human biodiversity, and now writes for the alt-right Unz Review.
These are the people being driven into the arms of the alt-right by the excesses of the left.
As well as jokes, there’s something else that establishment elites need to stop demonizing as racism: national pride. During the 2015 election in England, a left-wing candidate for parliament called people who fly the English flag “simpletons and casual racists”. And this is nothing compared to some of the things said by university academics about displays of national pride.
The globalist elites, who assemble in places like Dubai, Davos, and whatever unfortunate country hosts the Bilderberg Conference, don’t have a nation.
Whether they’re from Istanbul, London, or Beijing, global elites tend to dress the same, act the same, talk the same, and think the same. They look at what’s different and unique about their home countries, and squirm in embarrassment.
If you want to draw people away from the alt-right, this has to stop. If you want to identify with the jet setting, cosmopolitan, nationless elite, that’s fine. I like being rich and powerful too.
But stop looking down on people who want to stay true to their roots, and remember the national values and traditions that made our progressive, globalized civilization possible. Because for every national flag you take down to replace it with the faceless and sinister logo of the European Union, the International Olympics Committee or the United Nations, ten more will fly upwards in protest.
This is what and who we are.
Leftists will insist that racism underpins national pride, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Most members of the alt-right, even the serious ones, will agree that they want everyone to have national pride, not just western countries.
And they’re right — the instinct for belonging, for a sense of common identity, is universal. The global elite’s foolish quest to suppress this instinct is one of the reasons why the alt right, as well as the populist nationalist right, have gained so much ground so quickly.
Millennials have grasped an issue that the globalists have been ignoring for a long time: that immigrants should come to America from hellholes to better their family, not to turn America into the hellholes they fled from.
If there’s one thing that fuels anti-establishment sensibilities of all kinds, it’s the idea that the truth is being suppressed.
Sometimes the alt-right gets accused of flirting with conspiracy theories. Sometimes they do, mostly with a nod and a wink.
But other times they are right to be suspicious.
Straight white men have been lied to and lied about in this country for decades, whether it’s the wage gap myth or the hysterical witch hunts and kangaroo courts on campuses that police sexual misunderstandings between horny teenagers.
The politically correct establishment suppresses the facts.
Just look at the way the media behaves after a terrorist attack. Witness the desperation with which they avoid mentioning the name and backgrounds of the attackers, who are nearly universally Islamic. That’s if they can be bothered to interrupt an Obama speech to cover terrorist attacks in the first place.
America just suffered three terror attacks in 12 hours this weekend. Hillary couldn’t decide if it was a bombing, Bill de Blasio wouldn’t call it terrorism, and no one other than right-wingers were willing to label it “Islam”. Once again, everyone but the right look ridiculous.
Meanwhile, these are the same people who call white men racists and rapists without any evidence. …
And, of course there are those truths that are increasingly impossible to ignore. Like the fact that all cultures are not equal. Some are homophobic, anti-semitic. Some, as the German city of Cologne and the English town of Rotherham tragically found out, are rape cultures. And unlike college fraternities, it’s actually real this time.
I am of course referring to the fact of Muslim culture, which as it stands today is utterly incompatible with western liberal values. It amazes me that so many otherwise-sound libertarians and conservatives fail to grasp this simple fact, or brand it racist.
If you want to preserve capitalism, it’s probably unwise to let a million hardline bolsheviks into your communities. Likewise, if you want to preserve what the Left claims are the best things about western culture — tolerance, women’s rights, gay rights, religious freedom — it’s time to close the door on Muslim immigration. There is no gray area.
Everyone’s heard the old cliche: when you attempt to suppress something, you drive it underground. Well it’s true. But it’s even worse when you drive talented, skilled people underground. Because then they find each other. And they start building a rebel army. Everyone fired from their jobs, or suspended from their university, or kicked off social media becomes another soldier in their ranks.
The alt-right is a cultural rebel army. …
The good news is, the alt-right in its broadest definition isn’t in fact to any degree traditional white nationalist …
A huge proportion of the alt-right today are millennials, ranging from teenagers up to the younger members of Generation X. Primarily white, but also consisting of increasing numbers of minorities. Jews fed up with the pro-Islam attitudes of elites. Asians who are now being penalized by affirmative action. Black groups like the Hoteps, fed up with Black Lives Matter.
These aren’t white nationalists — they’re drawn to the alt-right because of the hypocrisies of identity politics, and by the joy breaking the rigid taboos of the establishment. …
White males are responsible for everything that the left have advocated for in the past: gay rights, women’s rights, civil rights, tolerance, the abolition of slavery, the establishment of the welfare state, and so on and so on.
They are right to be confused at being named Satan by the progressive left. …
I’m under no illusions that the left will abandon what have become some of its core operating principles. … What motivates the left now is anti-white hatred, particularly of straight men. …
“Systemic racism and “white privilege” are bullshit, unfalsifiable and bonkers pseudoscientific concepts designed to disempower white men in the societies and civilization they’re primarily responsible for creating.
Unless the left abandons this insane hatred – and as I say, I doubt they will – the alt right will continue to grow, and in the future we can expect to hear more and more about the horrors of cartoon frogs*.
*See the Wikipedia entry on Pepe the Frog. Extract: “The campaign website for Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton released an article stating that Pepe was associated with white nationalism.”
This essay, repeated here almost in full, was first posted on June 11, 2011.
In the new Alternative Right there are many religious believers. The argument for conservatism without religion is the same for the Alternative Right now as it was for the old right then.
(Also see our post, Religion is the problem, April 5, 2016.)
Most (American) conservative writers take it for granted that those who share their political opinions also share their religiousness, and are surprised, even shocked, that some conservatives are atheist.
We look at the matter the other way round. It is a perpetual puzzle to us why so many persons who are clear-sighted and rational enough to be conservatives yet believe in the supernatural.
Writing in the American Thinker, Lloyd Marcus opines:
Without beating around the bush, I believe the battle being fought in America today goes beyond politics; right vs. left. It is a spiritual battle; good vs evil.
We agree that the battle is between good and evil. We think the Left and Islam – in alliance with each other at present – are evil.
But what do the religious mean when they use the word “spiritual”? We understand “spirit” to be adverbial: one does this or that in such and such a spirit. They believe that spirit is a noun, identical with the “soul”. And what is the soul? It’s the ghost inside “you” which will continue to live when “you” die. Christians believe that it will live forever in “heaven” if it was good on earth, and will suffer forever in “hell” if it was naughty.
As if to strengthen his argument, Marcus quotes a passage from the Epistle to the Ephesians, ascribed to St. Paul, but of disputed authorship. Whoever wrote the epistle put into it one of the most egregiously Gnostic passages in the New Testament, and that’s the one Lloyd Marcus quotes:
For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. – Ephesians 6:12*
In Gnostic systems there were layers of heavens between the ascending spirit of the Gnostic and the highest sphere of the good God. In them dwelt powers called Aeons (heavenly beings and ages in time) and principalities (Archons). A low-dwelling, evil god, identical to Jehovah the god of the Jews, created this world and ruled it with his own set of Aeons and Archons.
That is not orthodoxy to any Christian sect. Christians are hard put to interpret the passage in their terms, which is probably why some argue that St Paul didn’t write it.
But Marcus means that flesh and blood Democrats are the “powers and principalities” he and his fellow Christians are wrestling against, and the Senate and the White House are his “high places”. In other words his battle is within the realm of politics. He just vaguely supposes that good and evil are terms that belong only to religion, so quotations from his scriptures leap to his mind:
The mindset of the American left is a spirit of Antichrist which is man making himself God.
Before writing me off as a Bible nut, please hear me out. Understanding this reality will explain much of the left’s behavior. Because they believe man is God, in their insane arrogance, the left think they can fix everything; legislate equal outcomes and even save or destroy the planet.
Now we agree with him that lefties arrogantly “think they can legislate equal outcomes and even save or destroy the planet”. And we know they cannot. Not because they lack divine power, but because equal outcomes cannot be legislated, and because the human beings who “infest” the planet (as H. L. Mencken once put it), cannot affect the thing to any significant extent.
What the religious right cannot or will not see, is that you can believe in the market economy, small government, low taxes, strong defense, individual liberty under the law – all the important conservative ideas – without believing that they issue from, or are sanctioned by, a supernatural source.
Marcus defends Sarah Palin:
Make no mistake about it folks, we are in a spiritual battle. Ask yourself. Specifically, what about Sarah Palin inspires such visceral hatred from the left? The word is “wholesome.”
We agree that she is wholesome. We like her wholesomeness. We like her decency and probity and patriotism and moral strength. We like what we have gathered are her favored policies. We agree with Marcus that the Left hates her for the very things we admire in her. And we are willing to disregard her religious views, as we have to disregard the religious views of all possible presidential candidates because the time has not come when a self-confessed atheist will stand a chance of being elected to the White House. (We suspect, however, that many a presidential candidate is a secret atheist – and perhaps a few presidents have been too.)
Our point is, good values make good sense and don’t require the sanction of a Nobodaddy-in the-sky. All moral ideas, all ideas proceed from the minds of human beings. A person who knows this to be the case is not one who “thinks he is God”; “God” is superfluous to him or her.
Marcus holds that without God to tell us what to think, none of us would ever get it right.
Because liberal elitists think man is God, they assume moral authority to confiscate as much control over our lives as we simple-minded god-fearing peons will allow them, including procreation. I picked up a government-funded brochure at my local library which basically said birthing babies is an irresponsible abuse of the planet.
Folks, this is leftist control-freak hogwash!
Yes it is.
The seven billion people who live on the planet could fit in Texas enjoying about the same amount of living space as residents of New York.
True. But he adds:
God said be fruitful and multiply. But then, what the heck does God know?
Sarcasm of course. But what the heck does “God” know? If there is a being who knows more than man, how can man know that he does?
The rest of the article (see it here) rambles on about this and that – “Christianity only religion not respected, Jesus is divine, true Christians trust God, zz-zzzz” – the points being tied together only by the buzz in his head that they all represent aspects of wrong guidance by “the Antichrist”.
Like an episode of Star Trek, the left believes universal peace can be achieved via America apologizing and admitting to the world that we suck, surrendering our power, signing treaties and singing a few verses of Kumbaya. They believe the greatest source of evil in the world is warmongering Christian white guys like George Bush. If only Bush had “Given peace a chance.” Liberals always cater to man’s lowest base instincts. They hate standards for behavior, labeling all rebuke of bad behavior as being intolerant and judgmental.
We don’t argue with that. But this follows:
And yet, they believe without divine influence, man is capable of someday achieving universal peace. Totally absurd.
Has he not noticed that a great many wars have been fought over religious issues? What has “divine influence” ever done for peace?
Christians believe that though we strive to do the right thing, the heart of man is critically flawed which is why we were in need of a savior, Jesus Christ.
And just when will his “savior” remove the flaws in the human heart?
*From this quotation, the title “The Darkness of This World” was taken for 3 sets of essays under Pages in our margin.
Milo Yiannopoulos on Trump:
We don’t entirely share his views on Marco Rubio, but with everything else he says here we heartily agree.
But here he rants against atheists – only reason given, they have no sense of style. More of this conversation is taken up with his disgust with fellow male homosexuals (“Lesbians don’t exist,” he says) who are unkind to Christians:
Needless to say, we don’t agree with him at all about atheists and atheism, but we find what he says, as always, entertaining.
None of us here at The Atheist Conservative, by the way, looks or dresses or behaves the way he describes the appearance and behavior of his typical atheist. But we all laugh with him at the picture he draws.
Milo is a Jewish Catholic.
It is more than likely now that Donald Trump will be the Republican Party’s nominee in the presidential election this November.
It is therefore very likely that the Republican platform will be what he wants it to be. And many Republicans, especially the go-along-to-get-along pillars of the Grand Old Party, most prominently its leaders in Congress, do not like what he wants. They repudiate him and his ideas. They say he is unfaithful to conservative principles and will alter long-standing Republican policies. But if their choice is between changing principles and policies to those of Trump or breaking the Party asunder by thwarting the will of the millions of voters he attracts, they will accept – are slowly coming round to accepting – Trump and his vision for America. (While probably still planning to knock it into a more familiar and acceptable shape.)
What do his conservative Republican critics object to in particular?
In an article hostile to Donald Trump, but accepting that he is almost certain to be the Republican nominee, Linda Chavez writes at Townhall:
Trump represents a repudiation of the Republican Party’s commitment to smaller government, free trade and an internationalist foreign policy.
Let’s consider these commitments one by one, and assess how far Trump is likely to change them, and how bad the change would be.
Smaller government is certainly a cherished principle of conservative Republicanism. We list it among our core conservative ideals, along with individual freedom, a market economy, and strong defense. Regretfully we admit that government is not likely ever again to be actually small, but does Trump not say anything that suggests he would reduce the hugely overblown bureaucracy oppressing Americans now? He does. He says he will lower taxes. Lower taxes must mean some shrinking of government. And that’s probably the most any conservative Republican could do.
It’s on free trade that we have a difference of opinion with Trump. He has indicated that he would match tariff barriers with tariff barriers. We think that’s counter-productive. But it’s not enough to induce us to call Trump a wrecker of American prosperity. In fact, most of his economic thinking is likely to increase American prosperity very considerably. He would stop foreign aid unless America got something back for it. He would make those countries that want American military protection contribute to the cost of it. And he has plans for job creation which we’re inclined to trust because, as an extremely successful businessman, he has done it.
As for the Republican “internationalist foreign policy” – we’re coming to that.
Here are some points from Charles Krauthammer’s syndicated column on Trump’s recent foreign policy speech. Much as we respect Charles Krauthammer, on this rare occasion we disagree with him.
On the Republican side … foreign policy has been the subject of furious debate. To which Donald Trump has contributed significantly, much of it off-the-cuff, contradictory and confused. Hence his foreign policy speech on Wednesday. It was meant to make him appear consistent, serious and presidential. …
Its major theme, announced right at the top [was]: America First. Classically populist and invariably popular, it is nonetheless quite fraught. On the one hand, it can be meaningless — isn’t every president trying to advance American interests? …
On the other hand, America First does have a history. In 1940, when Britain was fighting for its life and Churchill was begging for U.S. help, it was the name of the group most virulently opposed to U.S. intervention. It disbanded — totally discredited — four days after Pearl Harbor. …
The irony is … it is the underlying theme of [Obama’s] foreign policy — which Trump constantly denounces as a series of disasters. Obama, like Trump, is animated by the view that we are overextended and overinvested abroad. …
Both the left and right have a long history of advocating American retreat and retrenchment. The difference is that liberals want to come home because they think we are not good enough for the world. Conservatives want to wash their hands of the world because they think the world is not good enough for us.
That’s nicely put! Our disagreements will come below.
For Obama, we are morally unworthy to act as world hegemon. Our hands are not clean. He’s gone abroad confessing our various sins — everything from the Iranian coup of 1953 to our unkind treatment of Castro’s Cuba to the ultimate blot, Hiroshima, a penitential visit to which Obama is currently considering.
Trump would be rightly appalled by such a self-indicting trip. His foreign policy stems from a proud nationalism that believes that these recalcitrant tribes and nations are unworthy of American expenditures of blood and treasure.
At least Krauthammer calls it “a proud nationalism”. Linda Chavez, in her article, likens Trump’s nationalism to disreputable [?] European nationalist groups which are better described as tribal. She seems to forget that the United States has for centuries been a melting-pot, and the American nation has been – until very recently under Obama – the least tribal in the world. And Trump’s “nationalism” is better described as patriotism. That’s what an American’s “proud nationalism” really is.
This has been the underlying view of conservative isolationism … It is not without its attractions. Trump’s version, however, is inconsistent and often contradictory. After all, he pledged to bring stability to the Middle East. How do you do that without presence, risk and expenditures (financial and military)? He attacked Obama for letting Iran become a “great power.” But doesn’t resisting that automatically imply engagement?
More incoherent still is Trump’s insistence on being unpredictable. An asset perhaps in real estate deals, but in a Hobbesian world American allies rely on American consistency, often as a matter of life or death. Yet Trump excoriated the Obama-Clinton foreign policy for losing the trust of our allies precisely because of its capriciousness. The tilt toward Iran. The red line in Syria. Canceling the Eastern European missile defense. Abandoning Hosni Mubarak.
Trump’s scripted, telepromptered speech was intended to finally clarify his foreign policy. It produced instead a jumble. The basic principle seems to be this: Continue the inexorable Obama-Clinton retreat, though for reasons of national self-interest, rather than of national self-doubt. And except when, with studied inconsistency, he decides otherwise.
Is Trump’s patriotism a “version of isolationism”? Is it “inconsistent and often contradictory”? By “unpredictable” did he mean what Krauthammer is taking his words to mean?
What did Trump actually say?
We quote his speech in part (find all of it here):
America first will be the major and overriding theme of my administration. But to chart our path forward, we must first briefly take a look back. We have a lot to be proud of.
In the 1940s we saved the world. The greatest generation beat back the Nazis and Japanese imperialists. Then we saved the world again. This time, from totalitarianism and communism. The Cold War lasted for decades but, guess what, we won and we won big. …
Does he regret those American involvements? Not at all. He is proud of them.
Unfortunately, after the Cold War our foreign policy veered badly off course. We failed to develop a new vision for a new time. In fact, as time went on, our foreign policy began to make less and less sense. … We went from mistakes in Iraq to Egypt to Libya, to President Obama’s line in the sand in Syria. Each of these actions have helped to throw the region into chaos and gave ISIS the space it needs to grow and prosper. Very bad. It all began with a dangerous idea that we could make western democracies out of countries that had no experience or interests in becoming a western democracy.
With that we could not agree more strongly. It is not possible to turn states like Iraq and Afghanistan – Arab states, Islamic states – into Western style democracies.
And as for his comment on Obama’s actions – they have been “unpredictable” in that they make no logical sense. Krauthammer chooses them as examples of unpredictability to condemn Trump’s recommendation of it, when in fact Trump means something entirely different – as we shall see.
We tore up what institutions they had and then were surprised at what we unleashed. Civil war, religious fanaticism, thousands of Americans and just killed be lives, lives, lives wasted. Horribly wasted. Many trillions of dollars were lost as a result. The vacuum was created that ISIS would fill. Iran, too, would rush in and fill that void much to their really unjust enrichment.
They have benefited so much, so sadly, for us. Our foreign policy is a complete and total disaster. No vision. No purpose. No direction. No strategy.
Trump goes on to “identify weaknesses in our foreign policy” and to say how he would fix them. Among them (they are worth reading in full) is this:
We’ve had a president who dislikes our friends and bows to our enemies, something that we’ve never seen before in the history of our country. He negotiated a disastrous deal with Iran, and then we watched them ignore its terms even before the ink was dry. Iran cannot be allowed to have a nuclear weapon, cannot be allowed. Remember that, cannot be allowed to have a nuclear weapon. And under a Trump administration, will never, ever be allowed to have that nuclear weapon …
At the end of his analysis and outline of his intentions he promises:
This will all change when I become president.
To our friends and allies, I say America is going to be strong again. America is going to be reliable again. It’s going to be a great and reliable ally again. It’s going to be a friend again. We’re going to finally have a coherent foreign policy based upon American interests and the shared interests of our allies. …
Does that sound isolationist?
We need a long-term plan to halt the spread and reach of radical Islam.Containing the spread of radical Islam must be a major foreign policy goal of the United States and indeed the world. Events may require the use of military force, but it’s also a philosophical struggle, like our long struggle in the Cold War.
Absolutely right! And no other politician, as far as we can recall, has said it before.
He goes on to speak of “working very closely with our allies in the Muslim world”, which is one of the few points on which we disagree. There can be no such thing as an American ally in the Muslim world, precisely because “the philosophical struggle” prohibits it. Islam is ideologically opposed to the West.
… And then there’s ISIS. I have a simple message for them. Their days are numbered. I won’t tell them where and I won’t tell them how. We must as a nation be more unpredictable. We are totally predictable. We tell everything. We’re sending troops. We tell them. We’re sending something else. We have a news conference. We have to be unpredictable. And we have to be unpredictable starting now. But they’re going to be gone. ISIS will be gone if I’m elected president. And they’ll be gone quickly. They will be gone very, very quickly.
So that is what Trump means by “unpredicatble”. A commander-in-chief does not announce to his country’s enemy just when its army will stop fighting and when he will withdraw his troops – as Obama has done. It is a military absurdity!
He goes on to say “we have to rebuild our military and our economy”.
The Russians and Chinese have rapidly expanded their military capability, but look at what’s happened to us. Our nuclear weapons arsenal, our ultimate deterrent, has been allowed to atrophy and is desperately in need of modernization and renewal. And it has to happen immediately. Our active duty armed forces have shrunk from 2 million in 1991 to about 1.3 million today. The Navy has shrunk from over 500 ships to 272 ships during this same period of time. The Air Force is about one-third smaller than 1991. Pilots flying B-52s in combat missions today. These planes are older than virtually everybody in this room.
And what are we doing about this? President Obama has proposed a 2017 defense budget that in real dollars, cuts nearly 25 percent from what we were spending in 2011. Our military is depleted and we’re asking our generals and military leaders to worry about global warming.
We will spend what we need to rebuild our military. It is the cheapest, single investment we can make. We will develop, build and purchase the best equipment known to mankind. Our military dominance must be unquestioned, and I mean unquestioned, by anybody and everybody.
Does that sound “isolationist”?
But we will look for savings and spend our money wisely. In this time of mounting debt, right now we have so much debt that nobody even knows how to address the problem. But I do. No one dollar can be wasted. Not one single dollar can we waste. We’re also going to have to change our trade, immigration and economic policies to make our economy strong again. And to put Americans first again. …
But, he says …
I believe an easing of tensions, and improved relations with Russia from a position of strength only is possible, absolutely possible. Common sense says this cycle, this horrible cycle of hostility must end and ideally will end soon. Good for both countries.
Some say the Russians won’t be reasonable. I intend to find out. If we can’t make a deal under my administration, a deal that’s great — not good, great — for America, but also good for Russia, then we will quickly walk from the table. It’s as simple as that. We’re going to find out.
Fixing our relations with China is another important step — and really toward creating an even more prosperous period of time. China respects strength and by letting them take advantage of us economically, which they are doing like never before, we have lost all of their respect.
We have a massive trade deficit with China, a deficit that we have to find a way quickly, and I mean quickly, to balance. A strong and smart America is an America that will find a better friend in China, better than we have right now. Look at what China is doing in the South China Sea. They’re not supposed to be doing it. …
To be militarily strong again, and at the same time try to negotiate better relations with an aggressive Russia and China – is that “contradictory” or is it speaking softly while carrying a big stick?
I will not hesitate to deploy military force when there is no alternative. But if America fights, it must only fight to win. …
Our power will be used if others do not play by the rules. In other words, if they do not treat us fairly. Our friends and enemies must know that if I draw a line in the sand, I will enforce that line in the sand. Believe me. …
My goal is to establish a foreign policy that will endure for several generations. That’s why I also look and have to look for talented experts with approaches and practical ideas … We have to look to new people because many of the old people frankly don’t know what they’re doing …
No country has ever prospered that failed to put its own interests first. Both our friends and our enemies put their countries above ours and we, while being fair to them, must start doing the same. We will no longer surrender this country or its people to the false song of globalism. The nation-state remains the true foundation for happiness and harmony. I am skeptical of international unions … And under my administration, we will never enter America into any agreement that reduces our ability to control our own affairs. …
I will view as president the world through the clear lens of American interests. I will be America’s greatest defender and most loyal champion. …
The world is most peaceful and most prosperous when America is strongest. America will continue and continue forever to play the role of peacemaker. We will always help save lives and indeed humanity itself, but to play the role, we must make America strong again. … We have to and we will make America great again.
Where are the alleged “inconsistencies”? Where is the “jumble”. (We urge doubters to read the whole speech and tell us if they find any inconsistencies or contradictions that we have overlooked.)
The speech as a whole could be taken as a manifesto of the new Republicanism – what the Republican Party will stand for under the leadership of Donald Trump. He will take the Party forward, but not in the direction it has long wanted to go. It wanted to go, but did not move. He will make both good and bad decisions, as leaders generally do. But he will make them in the interests of a strong and prosperous America, and that is an America that is good for the world.
We are about to make sweeping generalizations, with no attempt to accommodate all shades of opinion. ( Shades of opinion are welcome in comment.)
Left and Right inhabit different universes of discourse. Completely different issues concern them.
The biggest issues on the American Left (in random order) are:
- Climate and the Environment
- Social Justice
To elaborate a little more:
The Left – internationally – holds man-made global warming to be an urgent threat to all life on earth, and tries in the name of saving the planet to force redistribution of wealth over the whole world, the redistributing agent being ideally a world government run according to Leftist values.
The one freedom the Left passionately advocates for is that of Each to seek sexual satisfaction of any kind, and for Each to choose a personal sexual identity, all personal choices connected with sex to be protected by law and subsidized financially, where required, by government.
The Left catalogues all Americans and all foreign nations according to a race analysis, according to which the white race is privileged and oppressive, and all institutions, led by government, have a moral duty to compensate non-whites and handicap whites.
All inequalities between sexes, races, and classes are considered by the Left to be unjust, the injustice being perpetrated by institutions and needing to be corrected by government using any means, including quotas for opportunity and advancement; adjustment of standards for inclusion and compensation; enforced limitations on the expression of dissenting opinion; the redistribution of wealth and power.
The Right does not concern itself with these issues unless compelled to, in which case its dismissive opinion of them is:
Man-made global warming is not true and would not be a bad thing if it were.
Sex is a private matter, only of public concern if it harms children.
Race is irrelevant to all political issues.
All justice is personal, having no meaning apart from the individual; standards must be upheld; power belongs to the powerful and cannot be bestowed; wealth is inescapably unequal in a free society, equality and liberty being mutually exclusive.
The biggest issues on the American Right (also in random order) are:
- Individual freedom
- The economy
- The Constitution
A little more:
The Right holds that individual freedom is the highest value. All innovation, all progress, depends on it. It requires absolute freedom of speech. The prime duty of government is to protect it.
Capitalism is the only system that lifts people out of poverty and secures prosperity. The Right wants the free market to be left to operate without government interference.
The government’s duty of protection requires a strong military to defend the nation from foreign attack; to maintain America’s superpower status of which the Right is proud; and specifically at this time to stop the advance of Islam and its terrorism.
The Constitution established the best possible system of government for a free society and the Right holds that it must be upheld and defended in its entirety.
The Left does not concern itself with these issues unless compelled to, in which case its dismissive opinion of them is:
The individual is less important than the collective, and individual interests are always subordinate to those of the collective.
Capitalism is evil, it values profits above people, it allows some to be rich while it keeps the many poor. The economy needs to be planned centrally by government for the equal good of all.
Wars should never be fought. Spending money on the military is a huge waste. America should not be the world’s policeman. It should not be a superower.
The Constitution is an outdated document. It says nothing about slavery. It stands in the way of an enlightened executive, such as President Obama’s, hampering his laudable efforts to change America into a more equal society.
Plainly, there is no common ground between Left and Right.
Dennis Prager writes at Townhall:
Just about all candidates for president regularly announce their intent to unite Americans, to “bring us together”.
It’s a gimmick.
If they are sincere, they are profoundly naive; if they are just muttering sweet nothings in order to seduce Americans to vote for them, they are manipulative.
In his acceptance speech at the 2004 Democratic National Convention, John Kerry, one of the most polarizing figures in modern American political history, said, “Maybe some just see us divided into those red states and blue states, but I see us as one America: red, white and blue.”
And President Barack Obama, who has disunited Americans by race, class and gender perhaps more than any president since the beginning of the 20th century, regularly campaigned on the theme of uniting Americans.
In his 2008 victory speech, President-elect Barack Obama said: “We have never been just a collection of … red states and blue states. We are, and always will be, the United States of America.”
In their current campaigns for president, Republican Gov. John Kasich and Democrat Hillary Clinton regularly proclaim their intention to bring Americans together. He, one suspects, because he is naive, and she, because she will say pretzels come from Neptune if it will garner votes.
Bringing people together is actually the theme of John Kasich’s entire campaign.
One headline on the “Meet John” page of his website says, “BRINGING PEOPLE TOGETHER, LIFTING PEOPLE UP.”
Senator Rob Portman said of Kasich on Feb. 1, 2016, “I am endorsing John Kasich because I believe he is the person our country needs to bring Americans together.”
And Clinton, who, according to CNN, is tied with Trump for the most negatives in presidential polling for either Republicans or Democrats since 1984, also speaks repeatedly about her ability and desire to bring Americans together.
The “Hillary Clinton for President Supporters” Facebook page has even said, “We’re in the business of bringing people together.”
What’s more, on April 6, 2016, CNN posted a YouTube video titled: “Hillary Clinton — We need a president who can bring people together.”
Lanny Davis, who served as special counsel to former President Bill Clinton, wrote on The Hill website that “Clinton wants to bring us together”.
Beyond Kasich and Clinton, Sen. Bernie Sanders made this a major theme in one of his ads called “Together”, which begins with Sanders saying, “Our job is to bring people together.”
Even Trump, who divides Republicans – not to mention other Americans – like no Republican ever has, uses this mantra.
A January article on The Hill site quoted Trump saying, “I can really bring people together.”
Gov. Chris Christie introduced Trump on Super Tuesday, and a NJ.com column released that night was titled, “Christie on Super Tuesday: Trump is ‘bringing the country together’.”
For the record, Sen. Ted Cruz speaks about uniting Republicans, but not often about uniting all Americans.
All calls for unity by Democrats are particularly fraudulent. Dividing Americans by race, gender and class is how the left views America and how Democratic candidates seek to win elections.
But calls for unity are meaningless no matter who makes them, because no one who calls for unity tells you what they really mean. What they really mean is that they want to unite Americans around their values — and around their values only.
Would Clinton be willing to unite all Americans around recognizing the human rights of the unborn? Would she be willing to unite all Americans around support for widespread gun ownership?
Of course not.
She is willing to unite Americans provided they adopt her views.
Would Sanders like to “bring people together” in support of reducing corporate and individual income taxes in order to spur the economy?
Would Kasich be in favor of “bringing Americans together” by having them all support increasing the size of government and the national debt? One hopes not.
I first realized the dishonesty of just about all calls for unity during a 10-year period in which I engaged in weekly dialogues with clergy of all faiths. Protestant and Catholic clergymen and women would routinely call for Christian unity. When I asked Protestants if they would support such unity if it entailed them adopting the sacraments of the Catholic Church and recognizing the pope as the Vicar of Christ on Earth, the discussion ended. Similarly, when I asked Catholic priests if they would give up the sacraments and the papacy in order to achieve unity with Protestant Christians, all talk of unity stopped. And, of course, the same would hold true for both Orthodox and non-Orthodox Jews who routinely call for Jewish unity.
Even more absurd are the calls of naive Christians and Jews to have all the “children of Abraham” – Jewish, Christian and Muslim – unite.
The calls themselves can even be dangerous. One would be hard-pressed to name a single free society that was ever united outside of wartime. The only truly united countries are totalitarian states.
So, why do presidential candidates repeat this nonsense every four years? Because Americans fall for it every four years.
But it’s time to grow up.
The gap between the left and right is unbridgeable. Their worldviews are mutually exclusive.
The Left is dangerously wrong.
Here is anti-establishment Mark Levin, at CPAC 2016, on the state of the Republican Party. He deplores the fact that its leaders still don’t understand how their failure to use the immense power they’ve been given to oppose Obama, is the cause of the rebellion of millions of Republican voters (expressed in their enthusiasm for Donald Trump – whom Levin does not actually mention).
And we quote from an article by (anti-Trump) Kurt Schlichter at Townhall which says and deplores the same thing: the Republican Party leadership has learnt nothing from all that is happening.
Even morons don’t slap their paws on a hot stove twice, but then the GOP Establishment would have to work pretty hard to rise to the level of “morons”. Exhibit A in the case against the cloistered, sheltered Ruling Class is the latest column from mainstream media conservative catamite David Brooks. I’d link to it, but I don’t want to send traffic to the hateful New York Times. Just Google “David Brooks smug clueless jerk” and it should pop right up.
Brooks opposes Trump for all the wrong reasons. He thinks Trump is low class, which Trump is, but that’s where his analysis really ends. Trump, and his followers, are uncool – and even worse, they refuse to acknowledge the natural right of Brooks and his ilk to command them.
Substantively, except for Trump’s recent conversion to actually enforcing immigration laws (which offends both Brooks’ finely tuned sense of decorum and his desire to underpay his housekeeper), Trump and Brooks often seem to agree on a lot … But while Trump knows his market … Brooks admits he does not actually know anyone who Trump appeals to. For that, he sort of apologizes and promises that in the future he will try harder to do better to comprehend the residents of the country he presumes to write about. …
How condescending. “Oh, I really should have understood the actual people who make up the conservative base better. Duly noted. Now all kneel before me!”
Understand that he’s no fan of Ted Cruz either, mostly because Ted Cruz is so uncouth that he actually presumes to fight the progressive elite that gently pats Brooks on his noggin and invites him to all the best parties, secure in the knowledge that on command he will obediently denounce, disavow and repudiate the same Republicans he is supposed to be representing.
So, Trump gets about 40% of the primary vote and Cruz about 30% and, while I did go to a public school, I still think that adds up to at least 70% of the GOP electorate voting for one or another candidate whose platform is essentially a middle finger to the people like Brooks who ran the party for the last 30 years.
We need to be clear on who the people supporting Trump are. I’m a Trump opponent, though I will vote for him against that evil harpy Hillary Clinton in the general because her combination of unhinged malice and bottomless stupidity will lead her to create a climate that invites lasting damage to the Union, including but not limited to actual violence. But many who agree with me about Trump’s perfidy are seeing what they would like to see rather than what truly is when it comes to the people who support him. …
So let’s understand who Trump’s voters are. … They are not just impoverished victims bitter because they can’t make Buicks anymore. There’s this meme that they are all dirt poor Appalachian oxy addicts, and that’s just silly. … While there is a huge economic displacement component to Trump’s appeal, most of his followers are the “work hard and play by the rules” people who get disrespected by the elite (when people like Brooks bother to notice them at all) but who do much of the work building and defending this country. Note the prominence of American flags [and] veterans’ issues … at Trump rallies. And then there is the talk of prioritizing America’s interests – do not underestimate the appeal to Americans of a politician willing to take America’s side.
Trump fans are not all racists and xenophobes. A lot of conservatives have used the same kind of leftist slanders to tar these people that helped alienate them in the first place, hence the way Trump’s rejection of political correctness is always cited as a yuge part of his appeal. …
“Yuge” has now passed into the English language, because Trump uses it so often – because his ambitions, his plans, his wall … everything about Trump is huge. Or rather, YUGE.
True, Trump’s followers refuse to follow the rules of the PC kabuki dance that coastal elitists instinctively adhere to when discussing issues of race, sex, or Islam. That doesn’t make them terrible – it just makes them honest. Sure, the coastal types who carefully refer to illegal aliens as “undocumented workers” may frown when some guy from Phoenix calls these criminals what they are – you think the kind of citizen who supports Trump would get a pass if he broke the law? – but it’s the elitists who are the liars. It’s the elitists using PC to cover up the truth about the economic disruption and crime illegals cause, not the Trump voters.
The elitists need to change, not the Trump fans.
But, of course, change is the one thing Brooks never even considers. Sure, he now acknowledges the need to socialize with people outside of Manhattan, by which he no doubt means flying to Iowa next time and awkwardly picking at a plate of French toast in some diner adjacent to a couple farmers in John Deere caps, silently wondering if the butter was locally sourced and counting the minutes until his flight back to La Guardia. But Brooks displays no intention whatsoever of altering any of his views based upon what he claims to have learned. Illegal immigration? Nope, he’s still at “Shut up racists”. Guns? Nope, he’s still at “Let me determine what few weapons you hicks should be glad I allow you to keep”. Obama? Nope, he’s still at “We can’t possibly actually oppose him – look at those [pants] creases!”
See Brooks, you and your buddies haven’t really learned anything because you haven’t shown any inclination to change anything.
Deep down – actually, not that deep down – you don’t think you’ve done anything wrong. You think your own base is stupid and easily led, and you’re just mad because they are too smart to let you and your ilk lead them anymore.
Be there? 14
Much can be said against Donald Trump. And much is said against him.
But what if he is the force – the only force on the horizon – that can and will smash “political correctness”? And ISIS? And keep savage Islam from any further invasion of America? And restore the borders?
Roger L. Simon looks on the bright side of a Trump presidency, writing at PJ Media:
Now that Donald Trump has wiped the floor yet again with the other Republican candidates in the Nevada caucuses, it’s time for the GOP to face reality — barring force majeure, they have a presidential candidate, like it or not. The so-called establishment has a choice: Get on the Trump bandwagon or try some desperate maneuver to stop him. But what would that be? A Rubio-Cruz ticket, assuming they would do it? At the time of this writing, the two men added together don’t equal the Trump vote in Nevada — and that’s even assuming their voters would hold, which is a risky assumption, given the current momentum. I mean — Donald won 46% of the Hispanics! Enough already.
A lot of my Republican friends are depressed about this situation. They worry that Trump is not a real conservative. They cringe at his vulgarity. They are concerned he’s a bully, even totalitarian. I’m not. And I am not depressed, even though I admire many of the other candidates in the race. Given the gravity of the situation, what Obama has done to this nation and the candidates being offered by the Democrats, a world class liar and a Eugene V. Debs retread, a personality as large as Donald may be necessary to revive our country. In fact, I think I’ll take the “may” out of that.
This is what I think the electorate senses and what the Republican establishment fears. Rather than being afraid that Donald will lose, many establishment folks, I suspect, are afraid he will win. It will not be business as usual and most human beings seek business as usual, especially successful ones. What, for example, is more conventional and unchanging than the Democratic Party? They have patented stasis under meaningless junk terms like “liberal” and “progressive”. Nothing ever changes. Republicans are at risk of doing the same thing with the word “conservative”. If I hear another candidate claim to be the most “conservative”, I think I’ll bang my head against the table. I can’t be the only one who feels that way.
So if I were a member of the Establishment, whatever that is, I would quit bellyaching, embrace Donald and make him my friend. He’s ready and willing. If you bother to check that ultimate news source the Daily Mail, you’d see that already he is hobnobbing with such Republican stalwarts as Rudy Giuliani, Arthur Laffer and Steve Moore. Unless I missed it, I didn’t notice the article mentioning David Axelrod or James Carville.
And listen to what Trump is actually saying. He’s for lower taxes and a strong defense and he’s not really against free trade. He just wants a better deal. Who wouldn’t and who wouldn’t assume he’d get a better one than the Obama crowd? Or the Bush crowd for that matter, on just about anything. He’s also pro-life, despite soreheads … screaming that Trump supports Planned Parenthood when he has said explicitly he does not support what they do on abortion, only on other women’s health issues. …
Don’t fight Donald. Be smart, co-opt him. Or, as we used to say, be there or be square. Next November depends on it.
Arguments pro and con are invited.
(And please do follow the link to the Daily Mail article, which is worth reading.)
The Democratic Party had gone wholly over to the dark side and had to be toppled from power.
But its only possible replacement, the GOP, had become so boring! Feeble, flaccid, sotto voce, forever falling as if by uncontrollable reflex into the posture of the pre-emptive cringe.
Until suddenly the busy, brash, boisterous, boastful Donald Trump arose in it and above it, roaring out terse insults and extravagant insincere praises.
Arose like a lion, like a leader.
The man with the golden mane.
Whatever conservatives might hold against him is beside the point. He fights to win. And that is so new, so surprising, so revolutionary to Republican politicians that they can’t bring themselves to stand behind him even now that he’s their front runner.
But for as long as he is their front runner – perhaps all the way to the White House – they need to urge him on with thunderous (even if feigned!) enthusiasm.
David Solway writes at the New English Review:
The GOP failed to use its congressional majority to assert its foundational doctrines on the misguided assumption that it could woo Democrat voters away from their traditional loyalties or perceived entitlement advantages by presenting itself as the lite version of the opposition. …
But why would left-leaning voters go for Leftism Lite when the real thing is available to them?
Stark examples of Republican surrender abound. Most recently, a Republican Congress signing on to Obama’s omnibus funding bill has brought itself into tawdry disrepute. Another instance involves the infamous Corker Bill, which could just as easily have been engineered by Harry Reid or Nancy Pelosi. Senate Republicans refused to deal effectively with the deficiencies of the Corker Bill – a bill, as Andrew McCarthy explains, that was totally inadequate from the beginning to counter the Iranian nuclear threat. The affair smacks of RINO business as usual.
As Andrew Bostom writes in a critical blog entry for April 15, 2015, Senate Republicans “have cravenly acquiesced to cynical, perverse Obama Administration bullying so as not to be labeled ‘warmongers’.” Once again, we observe the standard right-wing capitulation from what should have been a position of strength.
One recalls, too, the shameful spectacle of John McCain, a Republican presidential candidate, and the bloviating Lindsay Graham doing Obama’s bidding in Egypt in defense of the Muslim Brotherhood, or of McCain coming to the aid of Hillary Clinton’s Brotherhood-tainted adjunct, Huma Abedin, when she was challenged by Michele Bachmann. Such complicity – voting with or parroting the enemy – is a surefire recipe for yet another Republican electoral defeat …
In an interesting article for American Thinker, James Arlandson comes to the defense of the GOP establishment, which knows that society “moves by degrees”, that “incrementalism is the only way to retransform America”, and that the party must appeal to a majority of undecided voters. It is not an entirely convincing article. Such temperateness as Arlandson recommends sabotaged Mitt Romney’s campaign and did not prevent the installation of the most radical president in American history, whose skin color did not overlay his bred-in-the-bone Marxism. And we recall that Ronald Reagan, arguably the best president of the 20th century, was anything but temperate.
It comes down to this: Republicans need to change their game plan and go on the attack, abide by their core tenets, use their congressional majority to stymie a rogue president on every front without fear of electoral blowback, take on a corrupt and partisan media (as Donald Trump is doing, and as Romney did not when he failed to rein in CNN’s Candy Crowley’s illegitimate intervention during the second presidential debate between Romney and Obama), and stop being polite to their political enemies. They must rally behind their nominated candidate, whoever that turns out to be, turn a deaf ear to the “strategies” of political advisers and so-called experts (who are habitually wrong about everything), counter the debilitating sickness of political correctness, tackle issues like Muslim immigration and cross-border infiltrations on a consensus basis, and, generally speaking, appeal to principle rather than to the opposition.
A tall order, but RINOs [Republicans In Name Only] will not win the 2016 election. Blue Republicans will not convince a partisan, cynical, wavering, or undecided electorate. Canada’s Conservatives lost the [recent] election in part because they shrank from being truly conservative. Similarly, should the Republicans lose in November 2016, it will be because they failed to be truly republican.
Or perhaps because they’ll fail to follow a new leader who is only just republican enough, only just conservative enough, but is above all a mover and shaker, who could lead them to victory.
Will he? Or will the sober and serious Marco Rubio do it? Or the strong steady Ted Cruz? One of them must.
Must beat the Democratic nominee, whether the crook or the commie.
In any case, the unfolding drama is exciting.
An exciting GOP at last!
(Hat-tip for the Solway link to our commenter cogito)