Back in 2004 when this blog had a vastly larger audience than it does today, it occurred to me that the sure-fire way for us to become instantly rich and famous would be to pick a day and announce we were switching sides. Remember, that was the heat of the 2004 election season and this blog was originally built to support President Bush’s re-election effort. Had we, say, announced our switch in September of 2004, it would have made a splash – quite a large one. The specific issue to break over would have been the war, and the follow up would have been our denouncing the racist dog-whistles Bush was using to stir up white voters and get them to the polls. Naturally, we did no such thing: honorable people don’t set about lying to just to make a buck and get famous. Dishonorable people take a different view of the matter. And that brings us to Max Boot.
He’s written an article – part of a marketing effort for his book – in the Washington Post explaining his rejection of the Republican Party. Here’s the flavor:
…it’s obvious that the history of modern conservative is permeated with racism, extremism, conspiracy-mongering, isolationism and know-nothingism. I disagree with progressives who argue that these disfigurations define the totality of conservatism; conservatives have also espoused high-minded principles that I still believe in, and the bigotry on the right appeared to be ameliorating in recent decades. But there has always been a dark underside to conservatism that I chose for most of my life to ignore. It’s amazing how little you can see when your eyes are closed!
What he means by that is that the GOP embraced things like limitations on federal power, muscular opposition to the Soviet Union and its agents in the West, not wanting the power of the United States tied to the approval of the relentlessly anti-American UN and such. And that is fine: it is ok to be in favor of expansive federal power and to desire that the US get in step with the UN, but Boot doesn’t stop there. Our views are not informed by a different, rational view of the world…but in Boot’s view are the mere result of our ignorance, bigotry and racism. I said that the longer a Never Trumper remains Never Trump, the more likely that person will adopt outright Progressive views. And there you go.
Boot goes on to note that the Conservatism of modern America emerged not just in opposition to the Democrats’ New Deal liberalism, but also against Eisenhower’s moderate Republicanism. And in that he does have a point. Eisenhower – and the “Rockefeller Republicans” who followed him – was a disaster for the United States. Nearly as much as he was a disaster as Supreme Allied Commander in WWII (don’t get me started – but anyone who wants to argue against me will first have to justify the dead at Kasserine and the Bulge). The New Deal wasn’t an organic development of American politics, but an affront to the very ideals America was founded upon: the idea that a remote, federal bureaucracy can dictate the actions of people thousands of miles away is simply un-American (it is also immoral). It was (and remains) the ultimate duty of all right-of-center Americans to seek the undoing of FDR’s work and all that resulted from it. People like Ike – who seems to only have chosen the GOP out of convenience – wanted none of that. They made their peace with FDR and only asserted they would manage his un-American federal behemoth better than the Democrats would. But, what is the point of that? Why even have an opposition if it won’t, you know?, oppose what the other side is doing?
We’ve seen the result of having an opposition which doesn’t oppose: in the time since Buckley first raised the Conservative banner in opposition, we’ve gone from (officially) wanting to roll back the New Deal to being within an ace of having single-payer healthcare. And let’s not forget the rest of it: overall, it seems that about half of America’s births are out-of-wedlock. This didn’t just happen. We didn’t just slide from Social Security to Obamacare, nor did we accidentally forget to get married before having kids. This was deliberately advanced by the left – they wanted these results. Yes, even the out-of-wedlock births were desired by the left. Don’t fool yourself: the left hates the traditional family. The left sees it as a mere vehicle for the transmission of cis-hetero, patriarchal norms which perpetuate injustice.
There’s a book out there worth your reading: The Good Years, by Walter Lord. It covers American history from 1900 to the start of the First World War. This was America at flood tide. We were free. We were little taxed. Little regulated. The federal government took most of the Summer off each year. We only had a small standing army. We had no alliances with anyone in the world. We were growing richer and more powerful by the minute. There were problems and injustices, of course, and Lord notes them. Certainly the most egregious injustice in the United States in those days was the increasingly bad treatment of the African-American minority. But even that injustice was being effectively attacked. There was no doubt given time that America’s innate sense of fairness would have eventually cured the problems – and there was also no doubt that America was already the most powerful nation in the world.
The left essentially looked at that America and said, “it has to go”.
One of the events Lord goes over is the murder trial of labor leader Bill Haywood in 1907. Haywood was a far-left labor activist and the former governor of Idaho was murdered (via a bomb) by a man connected to Haywood’s organization. Now, during the trial, the American left went it’s usual full-blown nuts over the issue, asserting that justice couldn’t be had and that America was an oppressive, Capitalist dictatorship and that only socialist revolution could save us. They were rather deflated when the jury came back with a not guilty in the matter (it seems that while it was clear Haywood wasn’t opposed to blowing people up, the jury couldn’t find any evidence that he had a hand in the particular explosion which killed the former governor). But the main thing to understand is that even way back then, the left hated America and everything about it. The left was already ok with using violence to achieve its ends and it was already saying that America was irredeemable short of socialist revolution. Nothing has fundamentally changed from that day to this – and from that day to this, the efforts of the left have been directed at getting rid of America as it was back at flood tide.
Not just parts of it: the whole thing. That is what must be grasped. The left really is revolutionary. They might moderate their tone, but they never moderate their ends, and their end is a complete revision of the American order. Nothing which existed in, say, 1910, is to remain in place once the left has completed its task. Not the family. Not Christianity/religion. Not the free market. Not federalism. Not the Constitution. Not dissent from leftwing views. Nothing. Nada. Zilch. Zippo. Not one thing is to remain. In its place the left has been erecting what they view as the correct morality. You and I say that, on the whole, it is better to get married first and then have kids. The left says otherwise, and has worked diligently (and with remarkable success) to impose its view. And, once again, this is all fine: people are allowed to press for the views they think best. But there are a couple things which aren’t ok:
1. Not actually opposing the left even though you say you are opposed to the left.
2. When you give up and switch sides, start using all the slanders of the left against your former compatriots.
The first is treason, the second is dishonest. I don’t know why some people said they were on a side, but not really and I just don’t know how anyone can simply insult – with lies they know to be lies – the people they were lately allied with. Because I’m not buying this “I now see they are racist” nonsense. It is a stupid lie on the part of people who are switching – but it is also integral to the switch. Remember, they are going left and the left is opposed to everything that is or was America – including such things as adherence to truth. The Never Trumpers have been told the price of admission, and it is to become opposed to everything they used to say they support. As part of a package, giving up being a truth-teller probably seems like small beans.
The truth of the matter is vastly different, as you’d expect. While the left – and their brand new, Never Trump adherents – are floating nonsense about “dog whistles” and such, the reality is that we on the right haven’t a racist bone in our body. In fact, as Conservatives, we can’t be other than opposed to injustice in all its forms. We’re American Conservatives, for crying out loud – what we’re trying to conserve is America. You know, all that bit about all men being created equal and government of, by and for the people shall not perish from the Earth? That’s us – that is what we want. To be sure, the left twists that around because that is what the left does. Because we want the laws obeyed, the left says this means we want a return to unjust laws of the past. You know: “you only want to be strict constructionists because then you can consider black people to be 3/5th of a person”. Garbage takes like that – which only a nitwit unversed in history could believe. No: what we want is the system of self government which allowed us to continually remake America into a place where ever large portions of the people had an equal say in government and were ever more able to work and build for themselves. The left rejects that; and so we oppose the left.
Remember what I said: the left wants all of what America was destroyed. Including those bits which you’d think everyone would like. You know: the ability of the people to change things. The left hates that aspect of America as much as any other and may, indeed, hate it the most. You think the left wants people to retain the ability to remake things? That once they have enacted their vision fully into American law and custom they’re going to allow people to come up and change it again? Give me a break! The purpose of the left allegedly championing the rights of oppressed minorities is not to get those minorities to be free and independent people, it is merely to use their plight to de-legitimize the United States (“how can you say America is good when Injustice X is allowed to exist!”). As far as that goes, leftists don’t give a tinker’s dam about what happens to black people or any other people: the fate of any individual person is inconsequential in the left’s view. The left, in power, wouldn’t hold a black man down because he’s black, but they’d sure in heck hold him down if he decided he didn’t want leftism. You might want to argue that it is better to be oppressed on account of opinion rather than race, but I don’t see the difference…and as I’m in favor of allowing everyone to be free regardless of race or creed, I think I’m on firmer ground here.
To give you an idea of how far the left is willing to go to change every last thing about America, the city council of Madison, WI recently voted to remove the gravestone atop the graves of Confederate soldiers who died in Wisconsin as POW’s. Click the link: it isn’t a heroic statue. Its nothing but a gravestone with the names of the dead inscribed. I’ll bet not one in a thousand Madison residents even knew it was there. But some leftist found it and made an issue about it. Because every, last thing which was America has to go. The dead, if they are the wrong dead, shall not even have a marker letting you know where they are. America is the left’s Carthage and it is to be destroyed and the ground sown with salt to ensure it never revives. And the Never Trumpers are ok with this. And, in truth, they likely always have been.
And I’m betting they are feeling relief. I’ve seen some Never Trump social media comments. They very much sound as if they come from people who, for years, heard their liberal friends shout “racist” at any dissenting voice and in their minds they were going, “I wish I could do that!”. It is hard to stand against the current – especially if your milieu is the media, where almost everyone is a leftist. I mean, think about it: you’re at a party or social gathering and 95 out of the 100 people there are of one view while you and four others are of a different view. Are you really going to stand tall? Or are you going to concede to the views of the overwhelming majority? Likely, most of them conceded…and now they’re just doing in public what they long ago did in private.
To be sure, for a while the Never Trumpers will make mild statements in favor of some vestigial, conservative view the left (temporarily) allows them to retain. You might get a rumbling about low taxes here and there; a small bit about de-regulation; maybe even a mild defense of freedom of conscience from these guys. But, it’ll be muted and, eventually, gone. They won’t be permitted to have it otherwise. Their new friends are not interested in hearing dissent, at all…and they certainly won’t put up with a Boot or a Nichols disturbing the waters with a heterodox view. Remember, the left is at war with all of America; and you can’t be friends with the left, for long, without subscribing to the whole lot of it.
It really is good riddance, here. Upon reflection, you start to realize why we on the right failed to make a strong appeal to minority voters: because making those appeals would involve speaking some truth. Truth is always denounced by the left, but they denounce with especially fury anyone who questions the left’s dogma about matters of race. Nothing scared these now-Never Trumpers more than an accusation of racism. We, on the other hand, ceased caring about such accusations long ago. Once you’ve been falsely called a racist a few hundred times, it loses it’s sting. For some years, now, we’ve wondered where is the bold plan to help lift up all those Americans who have been crushed by the imposition of leftism. Freed from any need to worry what hang-wringing do-nothings will say, we’ll be able to advance a much more bold series of proposals to reverse the errors of this past century. In return for this new-found freedom, the only downside is a few more braying asses on the left shouting false charges at us.
And, so, off we go into the future. It amuses me to watch these Never Trumpers. They are like people rushing to get the last ticket on the Titanic. Don’t worry, guys, the new CNN poll shows Democrats winning in a blowout next month! You’ll be fine! CNN is never wrong, you know? It’ll be fun to watch them realize they’ve joined the losers. And, of course, they will be welcome back, if they so choose – we don’t hold grudges over here (be careful, Never Trumpers: you’re liberal friends never let go a grudge). But we will require an apology, I think. You know: for lying about us.