We Lost: Victory Beckons

Nothing fails like success, you know? To take a couple examples from history:

Chancellorsville is rated as Lee’s greatest success as a general. Historians tend to use it as the justification for calling Lee a commander of genius and stand in awe of his decision to split his smaller army in the face of a larger enemy and slip around the Union flank to roll up a stunning victory. There’s only one problem with it: it was stupid.

It was only Hooker’s indecision which allowed Lee to pull it off. If the Union commander had pretty much just ordered his army forward any time during Lee’s movement to the flank, Lee would have been utterly crushed and his army totally destroyed. No really great commander gambles; great commanders rig the game so they can’t lose no matter what the enemy does. And if they can’t rig it at the moment, they don’t move. Lee’s move was daring – but reckless and no officer training school would ever teach a cadet to do that.

And it was also Lee’s eventual undoing: just two months later at Gettysburg, Lee, memory of Chancellorsville still fresh, sent his army into an attack which his primary subordinate told him was impossible. But his great victory gave him an entirely overinflated idea of what he and his army could do, and too high a level of contempt for what the Union army and its commanders were capable of. The doom of the Confederacy was sealed with Lee’s defeat: any chance of fighting the Union to a negotiated peace was lost when Lee’s foolhardy charge kicked the guts out of some of his best fighting units.

Next example: the German invasion of France in 1940. Once again, it is rated as a genius move by the Germans to send their main force through the Ardennes in a move to cut off the Anglo-French armies in Belgium. Manstein, the architect of it, is credited as a genius – and the fact that it worked tends to obscure the plain fact that it shouldn’t have worked. And I mean not at all. And while Manstein was the man who drew up the plan, he wasn’t the only general who noticed the Ardennes. In fact, nearly everyone did: German, French and English. And everyone discounted it: and not just because of the rough terrain. It also entailed sending a massive, mechanized force on a pencil thin drive supported by secondary roads. Any significant French of English drive against the flanks of such a force would quickly destroy it.

But, the Krauts got lucky. Very lucky. Half a dozen times. The French had plenty of opportunities, and forces in hand, to wreck the German plan. They unfortunately had generals who thought in terms of days rather than hours for response time. The German gamble worked only because a failure of French leadership. Especially in the first 48 hours of the breakthrough, just about any energetic French general at the Corps or Army level could have won the most stupendous French victory since Austerlitz had they just moved.

But it was also the German undoing. The success of their Ardennes gamble gave all of them, from Hitler down to the last Fritz, a massively overinflated idea of what they could accomplish. When Hitler turned his sights on Russia the following year, even the German generals who hated him figured six to eight weeks would be enough to finish off Russia. And it would have been – had the Russian leadership crumpled under pressure like the French leadership had. Stalin and his henchmen were rat bastards…but when the Germans were pounding at the gates, they stayed in Moscow and put up a fight rather than run away. And thus the Germans discovered that Luck isn’t on the side of the Master Race, but (as always) on the side with the biggest battalions.

So, why the history lesson?

Because our success was 1980 and 1984 and I think we sort of expect it to just happen again. That we have the right ideas and so we’ll just win if we get our ideas out there. We’re forever looking for the next Reagan to carry us to victory. We think that politics is just matter of finding the right message alchemy – instead of the hard work of getting voters to vote for us. Our too easy success against feckless opponents never prepared us for Clinton and Obama opponents…nor for the political machine they built and which elevated a senile degenerate to the White House in 2020.

To be sure, some get it: Scott Pressler is the most shining example of the youth of the GOP getting out there and doing the work. You should know: back around September when all of us were expecting a big win in 2022, he pointed out that while he was having some success in certain areas (most notably Florida), in lots of places there was little enthusiasm for the GOP…he was expecting what, in the end, we got: a small and incomplete GOP victory. We need more like Scott and we might just get them. People who are willing to do the hard work of registering voters and talking to them, to find out what might be on their minds.

We need to jettison Reagan. And it might be time to jettison Trump. Without for a moment elevating DeSantis or anyone else to demi-god status. Might RDS be our guy? He might. We’ll see. But if he turns out to not be the best tool to break down the Democrat door, then he gets discarded, quite ruthlessly, in favor of someone else. On and on like that – all the while working at the local level to shore up the real strength of the GOP. In each success is the seed of failure – but in each defeat there is the seed of victory. Our problem is that since 1984, we’ve only haltingly looked for the lessons our defeats are teaching us, and so we’ve lost all along…even during the times we officially came out on top of the vote. It is no good to simply get the office: we have to get all the offices, all at once, and with a firm commitment to certain actions. We can’t coast on Reagan, nor rely on a Trump to win our battle for us. It is time for us, all of us, to fight anew.

16 thoughts on “We Lost: Victory Beckons

  1. Retired Spook January 19, 2023 / 12:24 pm

    Off topic, but there’s an interesting narrative/counter narrative playing out WRT excess deaths. One of our trolls noted several prominent medical sources, including the New England Journal of Medicine, The American Heart Association and the British Journal of Sports Medicine, IIRC, insisting that there is no spike in excess deaths that can be attributed to the vaccine. OTOH, Coffee & Covid devoted about half of yesterday’s post to the subject.

    The drumbeat on the excess deaths problem is becoming deafening. On Monday, former Blackrock executive Ed Dowd told Steve Bannon that insiders say a “narrative shift” on sudden deaths is coming from the White House:

    Twitter avatar for @VigilantFox
    The Vigilant Fox 🦊
    Narrative Collapsing, Unexplained Deaths: A Shift in the Story Is Coming Soon – @DowdEdward

    “One of my sources in the government told me that … the White House is potentially preparing to declare an epidemic of sudden death and that they might blame long COVID …”


    Dowd said the disability data and the spike in deaths in working-age Americans (read: subject to mandates) is getting too big to hide, and White House staff is currently debating announcing an “epidemic” of sudden death, blaming, wait for it, long covid and the horrors of climate change. That’s not a joke.

    I don’t know if it’s true, and I don’t usually run rumors, but Ed’s claim nicely tees up the phenomenon coalescing since New Year’s.

    The Wall Street Journal dipped a timid toe into the excess deaths whirlpool last week, running an op-ed headlined, “How Deadly Were the Covid Lockdowns?” The sub-headline further explained “For Americans under 45, there were more excess deaths without the virus in 2020-21 than with it.”

    Without mentioning the most obvious suspect — the one new thing that 70%+ of Americans have in common — the authors expressed concern over the rising rates of U.S. deaths over the baseline through 2022 — not just higher this year than in 2020-21, but MUCH higher, and which keep on floating upwards. Most alarmingly, and consistent with Fed Chairman Jerome Powell’s goofy notice that for some reason there are fewer employees competing for jobs, deaths are highest among working-age Americans (18-44):

    The CDC data show the rate of non-Covid excess deaths in the first half of 2022 was even higher than 2020 or 2021. These deaths therefore likely already exceed 250,000, disproportionately among young adults. We are witnessing multiple healthcare emergencies, but resources and attention are still directed toward Covid. Non-Covid excess deaths have shown no signs of diminishing, at least through mid-2022.

    The rest is worth reading. I won’t say (although maybe I should) that someone is lying at this point, but, clearly, someone is right and someone is wrong. I just don’t have a lot of faith that we’ll ever learn the truth.

  2. Cluster January 20, 2023 / 8:06 am

    Tucker continues to expose the CIA in ways that may have him removed from the airwaves soon. We all should know by now that the CIA had JFK killed. I think that’s beyond any argument at this point. Well in his report last night, Richard Nixon, one of the most popular Presidents of all time, was also removed by the CIA for having the audacity to warn the public of the CIA’s and security states infestation of government. A few of the men who broke into Watergate were FBI operatives (think: Jan 6), and Bob Woodward, that “award winning journalist” began his career with the CIA before “finding his way” into the media.

    We don’t have an R vs D problem, we have a Deep State totalitarian problem. Unfortunately though, one of our two major political parties has sold out to that security state, and the complicit media is fully on board too. This is a YUGE problem.


    • Retired Spook January 20, 2023 / 9:55 am

      Now you know why millions of patriots have been keeping their heads down and their powder dry.

      • Cluster January 20, 2023 / 10:42 am

        Agreed. Covid has exposed a lot. And none of it has to do with the virus.

  3. Retired Spook January 20, 2023 / 10:12 am

    Bastiat spoke these word over 175 years ago, and it still describes the global elite today. Nothing new under the sun.

    • Cluster January 20, 2023 / 10:44 am

      Human nature NEVER changes. The same lust and greed that resided in the heart of Caligula, resides in the heart of Hunter Biden.

    • Retired Spook January 20, 2023 / 12:13 pm

      I can’t wait for her to be President.//sarc

      • Amazona January 20, 2023 / 3:18 pm

        Why do they ever let her talk?

      • Retired Spook January 20, 2023 / 3:24 pm

        I’m not sure if it’s an effort to make KJP look good, or the other way around.

  4. Retired Spook January 20, 2023 / 2:53 pm

    Here’s something you’re going to see more and more of.

    Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Ivan Provorov refused to wear a rainbow jersey during warm-ups for the team’s Pride Night for LGBTQ inclusion on Tuesday, citing his religious beliefs.

    “I respect everybody, and I respect everybody’s choices. My choice is to stay true to myself and my religion,” he said while taking questions in the Flyers’ locker room after the team’s 5-2 victory over the Anaheim Ducks. “That’s all I’m going to say.”

    • Cluster January 20, 2023 / 6:37 pm

      And I read that his jersey is now a best seller lol

  5. Cluster January 20, 2023 / 8:51 pm

    I’m cautiously optimistic about Kevin McCarthy. He’s made all the right moves so far.

    • Amazona January 20, 2023 / 9:34 pm

      Well, he knows the pitchforks are sharpened and not too far from his backside.

  6. Jeremiah January 20, 2023 / 10:01 pm

    Alan Komisserrof 47 of Fox News News and politics dies following heart attack.

    Like I’ve been saying for a good while, you know when they bring that commercial on TV, they say, “I’ll walk with you, walk with me.” Yeah, they will walk with you alright, they’ll walk with you to the grave..cause that’s where you’re headed if you take that vaccine.

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