Friday, September 23, 2016

Reticent Voter? I Don't Think So

The guardian of the conventional wisdom, Peggy Noonan, says that 2016 is "The Year of the Reticent Voter."

Not after this CBS News item about rust-belt Democrats leaving the sinking ship.

And not after yesterday. I was in line at the supermarket and a 50-ish white guy started rambling pro-Trump asides about Trump and Clinton. In the heart of Washington State's 7th Congressional District, one of the most Democratic districts in Congress! With women and minorities present!

Imagine someone daring to mention the name of Trump in the middle of Liberalville! Where the special snowflakes and the SJWs roam! The noive!

After leaving the store I realized that I should have sat him down, bought him a cup of coffee, and de-briefed him for the benefit of my readers.

No. I don't think this is the year of the reticent voter. I think this is the year that the Republican Party truly becomes the party of Middle America.

They used to talk about "country-club Republicans," and I suppose the insult had a grain of truth in it. Certainly, the GOP was heavily influenced by Buckley's National Review, by free-enterprise advocates, and latterly by the Religious Right.

And that meant that the "Reagan Democrats" could never really belong to the GOP, because, as we are seeing this year, the white working class wants the government to take care of it. It wants a degree of Patron/Client relationship, and if the old GOP stood for anything it was that it stood against Patron/Client politics.

(If you want an unsettling comparison of Patron/Client with Master/Slave and Lord/Serf, you could read this piece that a lefty calls a defense of slavery.)

But the truth is that in a country where the Patron/Client government programs of Social Security, Medicare, and government education are sacrosanct, then the championing of a government of personal responsibility is a dead letter.

That is what Donald Trump has demonstrated. And that is why the NeverTrumpers are so annoyed.

I've been watching recent Trump speeches, such as this one in Chester Township, PA, and can appreciate what he is doing. He is saying that when he is president he will care for everyone. He riffs off the Charlotte Riots by advocating for the decent folks that have to live in the riot-torn cities, trying to build a life of work and raising and educating children. Think of them, he says.

This line was startling to me, because the default conventional wisdom of the past decade has been to care about minorities and women -- as minorities and women -- and completely leaving out the ordinary non-minority-and-women people that are also struggling in these times. For Trump "inclusivity" means everyone, not just outreach to the previously "excluded."

You can see why the white guy at the supermarket would have been touched by this. Democrats haven't cared about people like him since before Archie Bunker was dispatched to Outer Slobbovia as a racist sexist bigot. But Republicans haven't cared either. They have appealed to people that obeyed the law, went to work, and followed the rules and didn't expect nuttin' from government. But people like my white guy want the government to care about people like him.

Well, Donald Trump has changed that, and he has changed the Republican Party.

It means, in the future, that the Republican Party won't be trying to do serious reform of the welfare state. Not until it is well and truly broken and the people demand that the government "do something" about it.

That's a pity, because when the welfare state breaks, it will be women and minorities -- and the white working class -- hardest hit. As usual.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Charlotte Riots: But the MSM Calls Them "Protesters"

Let's start by telling it like it is. The last two nights were "The Charlotte Riots." Yet well into last night, September 21, the mainstream media were talking about "protesters."

This is the result of our center-left ruling class allowing the rhetoric of the left to colonize our political discourse.

It is simply misleading to characterize any street action as a "peaceful protest." All street action -- in fact all political activity -- is at least a show of force. Back in the day, in the Sixties, they used to call the street actions "demos" or "demonstrations." That at least had the virtue of being semi-honest. Demonstration does actually mean "show." It just misses out the force aspect.

We know how we got from "marching" to "demonstrations" to "peaceful protests." The ordinary woman in the street doesn't like street action. She understands, at a gut level, that street action is not good for women, because young men released from restraint turn quickly to raping and pillaging. Not because they are evil, but because that is how they are wired. The great achievement of civilization, and particularly capitalism, is to tame young men from the dawn raid to work and to sports.

But the problem with a successful social and cultural revolution like capitalism is that pretty soon a Pharaoh arises that knew not Joseph. Dull minds like Obama and Clinton arise in the political arena and don't get how fragile the peace is. So the young Obama gets all edgy about "community organizing," what used to be called street agitation. And good little girl Hillary Clinton goes all goo-goo about Saul Alinsky and writes a thesis about him.

And I run into good little girl liberal friends who say that they always wanted to get into "activism." Truly, these people know not what they say.

It really is a ridiculous hypocrisy that these people, that talk about peace processes and disarmament on one side of their mouths, can advocate domestic turbulence and riots out of the other side.

But that is nothing new. We humans are famously capable of complete mental blindness. Conservatives have our own blind spots.

The problem with the whole political project of the left is its politics. Politics is division; politics is violence. You can say that you are fighting for justice all you like, but the fact is that when you implement your government program to fight inequality or the rape culture or the minimum wage you are taking money, by force, from some people and giving it to other people. It cannot be any other way. Government is force, from the moment that the insurgent rebels take up arms against the evil old regime and take the capital to the annual budget where the ruling party decides who is to get what from the taxes it enforces, to the daily show of force by policemen and the daily show of force by the national armed forces.

The whole point of modern political science prior to Marx and Co. was to limit political power to the minimum needed to keep the peace. All those Hobbeses and Lockes and Humes and Montesquieux and Tocquevilles and whatnot were trying to discover just how much politics was needed to keep the peace. The great argument of The Federalist Papers was to argue that the new Constitution and its increased powers for the central United States government were the minimum necessary for a nation state to survive in the world.

The 200 year fantasy of the left has been to ignore the lessons learned by its predecessors. The left believes in a politics that would transform the world, a one final outburst of political power after which a world of peace and justice would obtain. But this is madness. Politics is power; politics is division. Government is force; government is injustice. And ever will be.

So, in the utter failure of the Obama years we are reduced to Donald Trump, a mere real-estate developer, becoming the voice of reason, saying after the Charlotte Riots:
Well, there really has to be – you have to have law and order, at the same time you have to have a certain spirit, a certain unity. There’s no unity. You look at the level of hatred – you know the rocks being thrown and everything happening, it’s so sad to see, you know, that this is so sad to see that this is the United States of America. And it’s so sad to see. But there’s just no unity. There has to be a unity message that has to get out and it starts with leadership.
Golly. Where are all the wise men when it takes an amateur to state the obvious?

I will tell you. The problem is that a ton of people in the liberal bubble do not understand that it is the president's job at all times to symbolize the unity of the American people, and to speak always against divisive voices. Because the unity of the nation is in fact a fragile thing; humans are always half a step from starting a quarrel, especially with their nearest and dearest. Obama is a fool; he thinks he can play one group off against another, divide and conquer. Maybe so, but you need to do it with the talent and the flair of a Bismarck or a Bill Clinton; otherwise, don't even start.

Our national elections are civil war by other means. The point of an election and its votes are to symbolize a fight over who gets to rule; we say that the candidate with the most votes wins. The election contest is a sublimation of an actual fight into a sham fight, and we declare the victor the candidate with the most votes rather than the winner of a bloody battle for the keys to the kingdom.

But after the election, the victor and the vanquished must get up and say that the election wars are all over, that we are not warring Democrats and Republicans, but Americans. And so each candidate congratulates the other candidate for a well-fought campaign, and they tell their supporters to stand down and resume normal life as Americans that all salute the same flag and the national anthem.

It shouldn't take a Donald Trump to remind us of that. And it shouldn't take riots to remind us that the first duty of every citizen is to keep the peace.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Everything the Left Believes is Wrong

I was thinking deep thoughts in the early morning today. Or rather, deep thoughts were suggesting themselves to me, in the sense that Puccini meant when he said that the music of Madama Butterfly "was dictated to me by God."

What came to me in the morning was this: Everything that the left advocates is poison for its clients.

The Working Class. The left invited the working class to rise up against the employers that had drawn starving peasants into the cities to jobs that, in the fullness of time, brought them to a decent competence. It steered the working class away from working with capitalism to fighting against it; it encouraged the working class in tribalism and a patron/client culture rather than to help the working class learn the ways of the responsibility culture of the bourgeoisie.

Blacks and Minorities. Let us just look at the latest outrage, the campaign against policing. The fact is that the police in inner cities represent the official government fighting against the unofficial government of the gangs. It is bound to be a war, and it has been ever since the Brits created the Metropolitan Police in London in 1829. Blacks and minorities cannot get ahead into the middle class until the gang culture is defeated, and peace is declared in the inner cities.

Women. The sexual revolution, abortion and divorce on demand, and the forced march of women into careers are all profoundly anti-woman. No woman that has been spared the full-on ideological training of the left likes a sexual free-for-all, or killing babies, or breaking up marriages, or forsaking her children for paid work. Yes, but what do women want? I hope that women get a chance to find out.

Gays. I get it. I get that sexual creativity kinda goes with the German cult of the creative, and my whole notion of the People of the Creative Self. The thing to remember is that most efforts at creativity fail: most business startups fail; most artists never have a career; most writers are forgettable; most scientists never produce anything original. Many are called but few are chosen. In other words, don't start out on a creative life unless you can handle rejection and failure. For liberals to pretend that LGBT is natural and physical is to lead millions of young people into the wilderness.

Force. Government is force, and the recipients of government action experience it as injustice. Now the two areas in which force is inevitable and necessary are defense: against enemies foreign and domestic. But liberals stigmatize national defense as imperialism, and policing as oppression. But it is perfectly OK to reduce the entire economy to rigid administrative systems directed by government force. Everyone must be driven into a single government pension plan; everyone must be corralled in a single government health plan; every child must be sent to a government school. Everyone must work according to centralized work-place rules set up by liberals. So liberals have the thing completely upside-down. They want to use force where it is optional, and they stigmatize force where it is essential.

Liberals. Yes, liberals are not just leading other people into the wilderness, but themselves as well. First of all there is the idea that they, liberals, should govern the rest of us because of their education and expertise. Then there is the conceit that liberals should be given lifetime sinecures as scholars and professors. Then there is the conceit that liberals should all be "activists" advocating political solutions to all problems. All this is a really bad idea, because liberals get the money for all this by taxing productive citizens so liberals can hang out enjoying comfortable sinecures that empower them to order the rest of us around. It will not end well, for us or for liberals.

I suppose that the unimaginable revolution we call capitalism and industrialism that has birthed the Great Enrichment of the last 200 years was bound to throw up a reactionary movement of resistance, and nostalgia for the old days of patrons and clients, slavery and serfdom (see Moldbug for heretical thoughts on this). I just wish it hadn't been so successful.

Because there is an awful lot of stuff that will have to be undone in the coming years. And unfortunately, nothing gets "undone" without a lot of misery and bloodshed.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Never Mind NeverTrump

Today's little dust devil seems to be the NeverTrump crowd and the news that Bush 41 is probably voting for Clinton.

A lot of people are rather cross with the NeverTrumpers but I am not. I understand their situation; I feel their pain.

The best way to understand the whole thing is to shine the light of Mencius Moldbug's Cathedral concept on the 2016 situation. Moldbug's real name is Curtis Yarvin.

Moldbug's notion is that our present ruling class is a kind of Cathedral, a big church of which the universities, the media and the entertainment folks are the bishops and deans. And all the deans in their stalls in the Cathedral sing from the same hymnal and pray from the same prayer book. Politics, as Andrew Breitbart said, is downstream from culture, so politicians have to conform to the orthodoxies issued and enforced by the bishops at the Cathedral.

Under the rule, ideological and political, of the Cathedral there are two political parties. The Democrats are the Inner Party; when they are in power they rule. The Republicans are the Outer Party; when they are in office they govern.

The consequence of all this is that the Cathedral and the Inner Party decide what the Outer Party and its minions are allowed to say. They define, as we say, the Overton Window of acceptable discourse. Step outside the window and you are a racist sexist homophobe and may lose your job.

You can see where the NeverTrumpers fit in all this. They are intelligent people that have learned how to stoll around politely in the sacred precincts of the Cathedral close saying semi-conservative stuff knowing that their privileges could be withdrawn at any moment. Their careers depended on their good behavior and their proper genuflections before the altar of political correctness.

The point is that if they go with Trump and Trump loses, then what happens to the TV appearances and the book contracts? And as for the NeverTrump politicians, they have managed their careers in the knowledge that a careless word could be a career-ender. So why throw in with Trump? The potential downsides are too big.

So I understand the NeverTrumpers. They are just being careful, making the calculation that their careers depend more on sucking up to the Cathedral than taking a flyer on Trump.

And really. If Trump wins will the NeverTrumpers be out of a job? Probably not. But many of them probably won't get the plum jobs in the new administration. The A-listers will get jobs, because their presence in a Trump administration will add gravitas, but the mid-listers may miss out and molder away at their present policy-analyst jobs.

This is the way a revolution works, of course. Everything goes on in the good old way, with the wise heads of the old regime wisely stumbling from one mess to another and calling it progress. Everything goes on as before until the music stops, and the wise heads of the old regime are suddenly out of the swim, and new men, that nobody ever heard of, that were saying wild things that it was best not to know about, are suddenly in the saddle.

All of a sudden the place-holders of the old regime are scurrying around trying to find a berth in the new regime and trying to convince the new rulers that they are loyal and reliable.

Is that what is happening in 2016? Nobody knows, because we won't know what is happening until it has happened.

But meanwhile the prudent thing for Outer Party functionaries is to do the NeverTrump. They know the depth of cruelty in the present ruling class. The cruelty of the new ruling class is still just a possibility.

And Trump or no Trump, the Cathedral will still stand and the deans will still be singing in their old stalls.

Monday, September 19, 2016

The Left: Teaching People How to Hate

Ever since a liberal friend mentioned, in the context of 2016 politics, the embarrassing Trumpian memes of "hate" and "xenophobia" my mind has been in overdrive.

Because we typical Americans need the language to push back against liberal condescension and virtue-shaming.

For instance, what in the world does Hillary Clinton get away with condescending against half of the Republican voters as a basket of deplorables?

Finally, last night, the light-bulb went off. The problem of the left is that it has taught its followers to hate.

That is bad enough. But the real crime -- and it is the crime of the century -- is that the leftist culture of hate has hived off its supporters from the mainstream of American life and monstrously betrayed them.

Let us count the ways of the war of hate.

First of all, the left mobilized the working class. Hey, there was a problem, for the working class, that was up until yesterday starving on the farm, came up to the city and suffered for a few decades in factories and slums.

The way that the left mobilized the working class politically was to teach the working class to hate their employers. That was bad enough, but in addition it taught the working class that it didn't need to acquire the culture of the city, the culture of trust and responsibility and surrender to the market that is the magic bullet that enables people to thrive in the city.

And then the left fell out of love for the working class, and left it to molder away in decaying factory towns. It took the white working class 50 years to find a champion in Donald Trump.

Then the left mobilized African Americans in the civil-rights era. It all started out innocently enough, especially with the non-violent protest culture that Dr. Martin Luther King borrowed from Mohandas Gandhi.

But with the civil rights laws passed, what was the left to do then? Perfectly simple. It would teach African Americans to hate, and so today African Americans are the angriest racists in America, as in Black Lives Matter.

Then the left mobilized women in the second-wave feminist era. Sexual liberation for women! With no more double standard, and abortion on demand. And how did the left mobilize women for this movement? It taught women how to hate men and the patriarchy. It assumed that the grass was greener on the other side and that women needed to be force-marched in the world of career and paid work and farm their children out to child-care just like rich women down the ages. Well, the result is that college women have to drink half a bottle of vodka before going out to college parties, and they find that they have to submit to cringing sexual humiliation in order to get the attention of high-status males. It is not surprising that feminists are the angriest sexists in America, as in female college diversity administrators.

Then the left mobilized gays and lesbians. I don't know how much gays and lesbians were oppressed in the bad old days. All I know, from personal experience, is that when I was a young man in the 1960s it was the left that was stigmatizing gays as upper-class poofters. Talk about hate. Now of course the left has turned 180 degrees. Instead of combining sexual and class hate in a war on upper-class poofters it has taught an entire generation of sexual experimenters to hate the straight world. Now we have government-empowered gays hatefully teaching Christian bakers and pizza parlors and wedding photographers that they will be made to care. So liberals have taught gays to be hetero-phobes, terrified that the straight world is out to crush them.

The big thing to understand about all this is not that liberals are scum. It is worse than that. It is that liberals have a fundamental misunderstanding about the uses and the scope of politics.

The basic faith of the left is that politics can be used to liberate the world, and that this liberated world can be structured and organized on political principles using political power.

But this is a lie. Politics is division, and political actors are people leading a political war in a war-by-other-means. How do you mobilize people for a political war? You teach them to hate the opposition, just like the leaders of World War I taught their people to hate the Brutal Hun.

So, the more politics you have, the more division you have, and the more hate you teach to your supporters.

That is why, in the aftermath of the Protestant Reformation and its religious wars, wise heads started to think about how to dial down the hatred and the violence. They came up with a couple of genius ideas. One was the idea of the separation of church and state. It just was not a good idea to give ideological warriors the keys to the kingdom, because they would start religious wars.

But the wars of the Reformation were nothing to the wars of the secular reformation of the last 100 years, when ideological prophets and thugs got to lead Russia, and China, and Germany, and Italy, and plunged the world into two gigantic wars. And how did they mobilize their peoples for global war? They taught them to hate: the kulaks and the landlords and the Jews.

The second idea that the wise heads came up with was limited government and the separation of powers within government. What was the point? Well, I have explained it with my catchphrases that government is force, and government is injustice.

It doesn't matter what the ruling class and its supporters think about the government's agenda. The people on the receiving end will experience its program as brute force, making them pay taxes and submit to government initiatives that do nothing for them and their children. In fact, these victims of government force experience government as injustice, and they learn to hate the the people that oppress and exploit them.

So you can see what comes next. It is our response to the brutal put-down, so thoughtfully enunciated by Hillary Clinton, that we rubes are a bunch of racist, sexist, homophobes.

If only this latest from Hillary Clinton weren't a bunch of lies.

Hey, you ain't seen a racist until you've been on the receiving end of the racist thugs at Black Lives Matter.

You ain't seen a sexist until you've been bullied around by a sexist feminist college diversity administrator.

You ain't seen hate until you have been on the receiving end of the gay mafia and its corrosive war on bakers, pizza parlors, and wedding photographers.

And you ain't seen classism until you have seen the disdain from a politician like Hillary Clinton and her bribed apologists in the media for the people they all hate as "deplorables."

Friday, September 16, 2016

An Age of Atheists That Ignores Secular Religion

I have been over to Third Place Books a couple of times to look at Peter Watson's Age of Atheists. According to the publisher blurb on Amazon:
In 1882, Friedrich Nietzche declared that “God is dead” and ever since tens of thousands of brilliant, courageous, thoughtful individuals have devoted their creative energies to devising ways to live without God with self-reliance, invention, hope, wit, and enthusiasm. Now, for the first time, their story is revealed...

[It] sweeps up William James and the pragmatists; Sigmund Freud and psychoanalysis; Pablo Picasso, James Joyce, and Albert Camus; the poets of World War One and the novelists of World War Two; scientists, from Albert Einstein to Stephen Hawking; and the rise of the new Atheists—Dawkins, Harris, and Hitchens.
So I decided not to buy it.

Because the issue of the Age of Atheists, to me, is the question of the secular religious movements that have swept the globe like nothing else in history.

I mean, seriously. Sixty years after the publication of The Communist Manifesto Russia determined to try it, and 100 years after the Manifesto China tried it out, and India kinda, sorta tried it out.

When has there ever been an intellectual, or religious, or political movement that conquered the two most populous nations on the earth within a century?

Look, I am sure it is great fun to check out Picasso, Freud, Joyce, and even the second tier chaps like Dawkins and Harris and their courageousness. As if. As if they weren't boosted and celebrated in all the right places.

I've just finished a harrowing book about the youth of a believer, a believer in the secular religion of socialism. Child of the Revolution is the memoir of Wolfgang Leonhard, the son of a communist activist who fled Nazi Germany in 1935. This kid got the full indoctrination treatment at special schools, and he became enough of a true believer in the Marxist-Leninist theoretical system to become a member of the "Ulbricht Group" that followed the Red Army into eastern Germany and set up the communist East German state.

Yes, but what about freedom? To Leonhard, the west had no idea.
For us freedom meant insight into historical necessity. We were free because we were the only ones who possessed this insight on the basis of scientific theory[.]
The point is that for Leonhard and for many like him, ten years of the study of Marxism-Leninism provided him with a complete answer to life, the universe, and everything. He was appalled by the brutality of Stalinism but continued to believe in Marx's idea of every people finding its own independent way to socialism. But socialism was truth and truth socialism.

I have written that one aspect of this new secular religion is that today every well-born youth, male or female, wants to get into "activism," to do something for social justice. And that such activism gives meaning to their lives. You know, just like religion.

I want to read more about this, and understand it more. Because one thing I believe, that British social scientist Steve Bruce is wrong when he says in God is Dead that secularization means that "shared ideas are no longer as persuasive as they once were" and "a long-term decline in the power, popularity and prestige of religious beliefs and rituals."

Hum. If you confine "religious beliefs" to belief in God, I agree. But that misses the point completely. The question is, if God dies, then what takes His place. The answer is pretty obvious: transcendental religion gets replaced by secular religion that replaces a god-based religion with a secular religion that satisfies all the needs of what Nicholas Wade calls The Faith Instinct without actually enthroning a god in heaven.

And I want to know more about how this works.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Not Just Obama, But Liberals Created Trump

There is a lot of good clean commentary on the rise of Trump, keyed into Hillary Clinton's "deplorables" speech. Here's a good piece by Laura Hollis on the ten things that Obama did to create him, with advice on what not to do, including:
Stop pitting Americans against each other; focus on the positive; don't apologize for America.
And so on.

But let us cut to the chase. The reason the white working and middle class have gone for Trump is that his slogan, Make America Great Again, provides them with a place to belong.

Marx wrote, famously, that "The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles."

No it isn't. That is complete rubbish. The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of tribal warfare.

The class struggle arose in the context of the rise of the cities and the market economy, where the lower class migrated to the cities and their jobs, and there achieved enough strategic concentration that they could combine, for almost the first time in history since the fall of Rome, to agitate for their interests. The genius of Marx was to articulate this truth, and to teach the sons of the bourgeoisie that they could mobilize the working class for their own educated-class power project.

The rise of the bourgeoisie coincided with the rise of the nation state. I'm not sure that the bourgeoisie planned it that way. More likely the interests of the bourgeoisie coincided with the interests of the absolute monarchs because bourgeois merchant credit could be used to finance nation-state armies, and nation-state armies and navies could protect international bourgeois commerce.

I think it is fair to say that in the bourgeois era, the political question was who best deserved to represent the nation: the old landed aristocracy or the new merchant bourgeoisie.

In the last century the liberals, progressives, left, whatever, has tried to marginalize nation-state politics and replace it with class politics and now identity politics.

So the point of Hillary Clinton and her "basket of deplorables" is to marginalize the old nation-state politics and elevate the identity politics that the Democratic Party uses to gain power. Instead of doing a politics that heightens the idea of nation, and all people living in the United States as Americans united as one people, Hillary Clinton subscribes to a politics of identity, a race politics that heightens race identity, a gender politics that heightens the identity of women and LGBTs. The other side of this politics was to marginalize and anathematize nationalism as equivalent to Nazism or white identity politics.

And you have to give liberals credit on this. They have done an amazing job on a lot of Americans to get them to move their allegiance from America to their race or their gender.

But there is a problem with this. The United States is a nation state. The President of the United States is not just the administrative head of government, he is also the chief priest, if you like, of the national cult. There are, you will notice, several holidays -- holy days for the celebration of the national cult -- at which the president is expected to preside. He is expected to utter words that dignify the occasion and stir the national soul with the three principles of the national cult: that America is the best country in the world, and the American people are the best people in the world, and the American way of life is the best way of life in the world.

This is something that President Obama has not done. This is something that Hillary Clinton has not done. And so they have left a yuge opportunity for some fool candidate to run a campaign to Make America Great Again, and celebrate America as one nation and the American people as one people.

The point is that for the ordinary white middle class they have nowhere else to go. The ruling class has stopped celebrating the working class, and whites are not allowed to have a white identity politics. But what the white middle class can do is rally to the banner of America. And so they have.

This is the point to blame the GOP establishment that has failed to rally Americans to the flag in the last 20 years. But I am prepared to give them the benefit of the doubt. The liberals and the media have made life very difficult for them, because, as Hillary Clinton has said, you are with us or against us. If you are with us you are all in favor of our identity politics. If not, you are a deplorable, and a racist, sexist homophobe besides.

It is not easy to figure out how to counter people that will stigmatize you as a racist for all time if you beg to differ with the liberal agenda. But in the end, someone would figure it out and that someone has done so. His name is Donald Trump.

Liberals like to think that they are beyond and above nationalism and the flummeries of celebrating America. To replace it they have chosen identity politics, which they will manage at home, balanced by a cosmopolitan globalism abroad. But that leaves the average American with nothing to believe in.

Maybe that is why a large majority of the American people have come to believe that America is on the "wrong track." Per David French it goes beyond a sour economy. He quotes Kellyanne Conway:
We noticed a number of years ago that the responses to the wrong track question are not purely economic . . . In fact, for many Americans, they are not connected to politics or policy at all.
Kellyanne Conway is now with the Trump campaign. Ahem.

When Al Gore lost the 2000 election I noticed that Gore, and following him, liberals, did not concede the election and say, OK, now we are all Americans. Instead they put bumper stickers on their cars to "ReDefeat Bush." But Bush sat down with Ted Kennedy to pass No Child Left Behind. Then in 2008 President-elect Obama did not reach out to Republicans and develop a program that both parties could support. He said "we won" and developed a program in Congress without a single Republican vote.

In the old days the candidates would say after the election that we are now all Americans and call for unity.

I am not saying that this sort of thing is bad for Republicans. I am not even saying that it is bad for America. Although it is. I am saying it is bad for Democrats.

It is bad for Democrats not to embrace the national cult. It is bad for Democrats not to say, after the election: we are now all Americans together. It is bad for Democrats to stigmatize your opponents as deplorables and racists.

This is something that progressivism, going back to Marx, does not appreciate. That's because Marxism and progressivism are really secular religions; they are using politics to implement their heaven on earth. There is a reason why the Founders proposed no establishment of religion, and Thomas Jefferson talked about a wall of separation between church and state. It is much harder to compromise questions of religious faith than to compromise questions of law and distribution of loot.

And the whole point of politics is to avoid civil war and compromise differences instead of fighting to the death.

Democrats and liberals are blind to this, probably because they do not understand that their progressive faith is in fact a religion.

My dearest hope is that African Americans and Hispanic Americans will rally to Trump's banner, and decide to think of themselves as Americans who happen to be black or Latino. Because then they will start to enjoy life in America instead of being shock troops for the liberal agenda.

One fine day, perhaps, we humans will rally worldwide, as merely humans, and not as tribes, or classes, or nations, or identities. But until that day the best thing going is the nation state and its supporting cult of the nation, the national people and the national homeland and the national government. The alternative that liberals propose, of warring sub-national identities presided over by a global elite of the educated and the evolved, is a royal road to conflict and the killing fields.