As the political death march of the GOP enters its final stretch and a disintegrating nation bears witness to its downfall, the cable news network of corporate accomplices finally faces its own Götterdämmerung
By Mark Cromer
You can see the fear in their eyes each night now.
And you can hear it in their voices, even as they attempt to conceal their congealing dread with cheap on-air shticks and routines such as Laura Ingraham’s slurring her giddy declarations and throwing in ‘That’s wild! Wild!’ through her fixed smile and fake laugh played up as an impression of Johnny Carson-meets-Dean Martin five martinis into it. You can hear it in Sean Hannity’s breathless machine gun mouth as he rakes his audience with a mix of canned jargon rattled off at political adversaries followed by mantra-like adulation chanted for President Trump in what often appears to actually be an attempt at televised mass hypnosis.
The Great Buck Howard would not be impressed.
And it’s Hannity’s nightly high velocity spray—kicked off with a warning to ‘buckle up’ but closed out with a faux-paternal reassurance of ‘let not your heart be troubled’ from John:14—that perhaps best betrays the brave face that Fox News is attempting to put on as the electoral death rattle wracks the Republican Party’s withering body politic across a convulsing America. Simply put, Hannity apparently believes if he just talks faster and louder and spews ever longer and more lurid streams of Carny-esque adjectives that he can make the nightmare that is descending simply disappear.
But it’s far too late for that and the Democrats so-called ‘progressive’ Peoples Temple cult members that have been incubating and hatching like pod people undisturbed for four decades have emerged to do more than just roost contentedly on the Fox & Friends farm.
These are heady days indeed for the cultural revolutionaries within the mass media infrastructure that the progressive cultists have seized during their long march and as America burns the firelight captures the glowing faces on MSNBC, CNN, PBS and the legacy broadcast networks as well as down channel offerings such as ESPN and assorted smaller cable networks that have virtually all raised their fists and little red books either in support or nervous compliance.
Yet even as the American construct collapses into what most likely will resemble something along the lines of Lebanon in the mid-to-late 1970s or Yugoslavia in the 1990s, it is Fox News that is becoming simultaneously ever more fascinating and, quite frankly, darkly funny to watch as it finally dawns on their on-air staff ever more so each day what their relentless shilling and whorish submission to the Republicans’ corporatist leadership will now pay them and their own children and grandchildren.
To be sure, there are still some contented faces to be found around the Fox News studios, perhaps none more so than Neil Cavuto’s cherubic mug that has been a programing staple by the network since its inception in the fall of 1996. As a Wall Street cutout that reliably hits his marks for the markets on every broadcast of his shows (he has at least two), the violent chaos now sweeping the nation’s cities and the assimilation of the government into a soulless corporation is surely a sustained jasmine-scented breeze that billows the satin sails of Cavuto’s abject contempt for the lingering remnants of America as a nation-state and working Americans as a once culturally cohesive people. So these must invigorating days indeed for ‘Ne-Ne C.,’ as he’s reportedly known around the studio.
But for the weekday prime time opinion show line-up of Tucker Carlson, Hannity and Ingraham, the dog days of August 2020 offered little more than a perpetual state of high anxiety and panic attacks as the GOP teeters on the edge of political oblivion and with it the end of the world that has succored their success for so long.
This long, hot August was capped off by a Republican National Convention that played out in a parade of personalities that populate the Fox News universe, including former employee Kimberly Guilfoyle, who delivered what appeared to be her own version of Dwight Schrute’s podium pounding acceptance speech as Salesman of the Year for Northeastern Pennsylvania, only far more bizarrely surreal than funny. The GOP convention could have used an assist from The Office’s Michael Scott, taking the stage to shout into the mic: “Good Morning, Vietnam!”
Fox News viewers might be forgiven if they thought the convention looked like a Christopher Guest mockumentary, as almost immediately after Trump had regaled his assembled garden party audience and the 23 million more Americans who were tuned in with a declaration that under his watch citizens will always walk freely and safely on the nation’s streets, attendees leaving the White House were set upon by mobs of urban berserkers and street terrorists and even Senator Rand Paul and his wife admitted they felt they were going to be killed.
The discomfort in the Fox News studios must have been palpable as they reeled from the televised spectacle of a sitting U.S. Senator and his wife cowering behind two police officers apparently armed with little more than bicycles to fend off the savages that circled them just outside the President’s mansion. How to best explain this to their viewers? Well, Fox News reverted to its own brand of ‘Never Trump’—in that it’s never Trump’s responsibility. It’s never Trump who must be held accountable. Since the District of Columbia doesn’t have a governor to blame, they went right for the mayor of the city. While Trump has the authority to put as many troops on the streets of the nation’s capital to do whatever it takes to restore and preserve order—it’s the mayor’s fault. To be sure, Mayor Muriel Bowser is indeed a proud facilitator of the violent chaos, but the buck inevitably ends up on Trump’s desk.
And so it goes for the powerful network that Rog Ailes and Rupe Murdoch built to reach white middle America—lets be clear that’s the primary programming demographic for Fox News and it’s as legitimate a programming focus as BET’s is for black America or Univision’s is for Latinos.
But Fox News has also spent a quarter century serving as the communications department of the Republican Party, coming on-air just as the GOP-led estate sale of the American enterprise was really kicking into high-gear. The Republican leadership understood that the Democrats long-term plans called for the demolition of the United States, but they were committed to ensuring everything and anything of financial value was cataloged, parceled and sold before the so-called progressives were allowed to set the torch to the gutted structure.
Yet now as that dark day finally arrives, the A-Team hunkered down at 1211 Avenue of the Americas in the Fox News HQ that’s so wonderfully planted smack-dab in the middle of Warren Wilhelm ‘Bill’ (ha!) de Blasio’s real life Night of The Living Dead set in what used to be called New York City, well they seem caught flat-footed at best.
Even Carlson, who at least seemingly has come the closest to calling out the high treason the Republican Party’s leadership has been insidiously engaged in since well before a young Tucker was padding across the grounds of Trinity College in Connecticut for what it is, seems stunned by the successive cultural body blows that have landed across America since the dawn of 2020 and he can often be found opening his show in recent months with candid declarations of disbelief that the country is disintegrating with such rapidity. Carlson is indeed alone among the marquee players at the cable network to accuse the GOP leadership in at least a semi-meaningful way—to the extent he has done it at all is notable for Fox News—and yet each and every time he does he quickly retreats into standard-issue bromides targeting the Democratic Party’s progressive cult leaders and their vast array of support mechanisms they have spent the better part of the past half-century building undisturbed by the corporate looters running the GOP’s self-dealing operation.
It’s a shame that when mainline GOP honchos and hucksters come on his show for a chat Carlson never manages to muster the animated contempt or raw testosterone he throttled up for public consumption during his aggressive questioning of disgraced attorney Michael Avenatti. Considering that Avenatti was and remains virtually insignificant—make that utterly irrelevant—in the scheme of America’s fate, it’s odd that Carlson would dedicate the airtime and energy to his frequent and impassioned denunciations of him, complete with the Trumpesque nickname he bestowed on Avenatti for belittling purposes alone: ‘Creepy Porn Lawyer.’
That Avenatti was entertained by some in the media as a plausible Democratic candidate for president and fêted by yet others as some altruistic social justice lawyer out to defeat the Great Orange Ogre only speaks to their journalistic malpractice in the first instance and brazen disingenuous motives in the second; but it does not explain why Carlson relentlessly expressed his distaste for Avenatti and yet somehow couldn’t stop talking about him. What does explain it is a simple, four letter word that Carlson could also not stop using: ‘porn.’ Avenatti provided cover for Carlson to tease the term ‘porn’ throughout his show, i.e. ‘Porn Star Stormy Daniels’ ‘Porn Lawyer’ and ‘Porn, Porn and More Porn’ all ‘coming up right after the break’ throughout his show in a tried and true tactic that news stations around the nation developed back in the 1980s for sweeps week. The term ‘porn’ is to television viewers what chum is to sharks: a cattle call.
Thus while Carlson can perhaps be forgiven for shamelessly employing the cheap ratings-grabbing tactic that Avenatti’s bizarre performance on the crumbling American stage provided, the truly damning indictment of his opinion show ethos can be found in what he doesn’t do or say when someone like Dana Perino appears on his show. One must remember that Carlson declares himself virtually every night at the closing of his show, lest anyone forget for even a single news cycle, that he and he alone is: “The sworn enemy of lying, pomposity, smugness and group think.”
If you have to tell people every single night via a cheap and cheesy slogan what it is you ostensibly stand for, then perhaps its veracity should be stress-tested. And what better a quality control measure than to review Dana Perino’s frequent appearances on Tucker Carlson Tonight, where Carlson indulges nothing more than friendly banter that often sounds like he is crushing on Perino and doesn’t want to blow his chances. He reliably delivers her open-ended questions as if the two were stretched out on a picnic blanket and he was feeding her grapes about insider political jockeying in which Perino answers in her trademark meandering semi-stammer while Carlson nods in smiling agreement.
And Carlson doesn’t seem the slightest bit perturbed by Perino’s breezy musings on politics and the state of American life, unfazed that these airy utterances are flowing forth from the former official mouth of the Bush Administration—one of the most viscerally corrupt regimes in the history of the republic. The very same Bush Administration that launched a failed and endless war in Afghanistan and a catastrophic war based on lies in Iraq while simultaneously overseeing an open-border policy that brought no less than 30 million more migrants from foreign shores into the United States as the national treasury was running dry and the robber barons of Wall Street were running amok even as they ran the nation into the ground in a drunken orgy of sheer greed.
Yes, that Dana Perino of that Bush Administration.
Yet it’s all smiles and giggles with Carlson a’ blush over his lil’ honey bunny on the screen in front of him, dutifully nodding and remarking with sweet nothings like: “You are so right. No one can say it better.”
But if he really was the ‘sworn enemy’ of the subterfuge, deceit and endemic corruption that has progressively maimed and now fatally wounded America, Carlson would happily invite her on the show and open with a question like: “Dana, thanks so much for coming on tonight as it’s always a treat to have you. Let’s just get started with something I have been wondering ever since your days back in the White House—do you ever feel like a vampire? Or maybe even a cannibal? I mean what with the endless ocean of our soldiers’ blood and guts W. & Co. plunged the nation into for ‘nation-building’ in Afghanistan and ‘weapons of mass destruction’ in Iraq, wink-wink, uh, I just have to wonder that if as the former public face of the Bush Administration and its parent company Cheney Corp., well, when you see a vet hobbling along missing all of one leg and half of the other, or maybe just standing there in a Oxy haze with half of his face blown off, do you suddenly feel thirsty, Dana? Hungry perhaps? How about horny? When you see a vet that was nearly blown in half by an IED outside of Fallujah but somehow survived, does your barometer chart a perceptible rise in humidity south of your equator?”
If Carlson felt so giddy at the prospect of relentlessly trolling someone so utterly irrelevant to America as Michael Avenatti as the ‘Creepy Porn Lawyer,’ one might think he could at least bestir himself on a single occasion to dub the Bush Administration’s Press Secretary what, judging by Carlson’s very own metrics, she most surely is: a ‘Blood-guzzling War Whore.’
But since she is his colleague at Fox News and has more shows than he does and because Perino is in relentless rotation across most of the network’s other shows he demurs in favor of feeding her those plump grapes while Perino giggles her way through America’s collapse.
Yet it isn’t just Carlson’s crush Perino that brings out the simpering host in him.
Carlson also just recently indulged the same grotesquely deferential game with White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, a frequently combative tough-talker from North Carolina that served in Congress and chaired the GOP’s Freedom Caucus before getting the nod from Trump earlier this year. Meadows appeared on Carlson’s show in an A-block segment to pound the Democrats on the issue of public safety—an issue that has seized Fox News as much as it has most other bipedal, cognizant Americans with even a modicum of situational awareness.
The level of coordinated mob violence exploding in cities across the nation in recent months as police forces have been held back or ordered to retreat has reached such a level that even Fox News has been unable to ignore the fact that Trump and the GOP have done nothing to stop it. Unable to deny the obvious, they seek to deflect the disgusting abrogation of sworn duty and echo Trump’s transparent excuses.
So as Americans are being beaten and killed on the streets by fast-moving and well-organized terror squads amid waves of unprecedented looting and arson, Trump has played classic Trump: tweeting ‘Law and Order!’ and burping out bravado now and again that he could “stop it so fast, so easily” if the governors in the carnage-wracked states were only to appeal to him to intervene. This is what passes for presidential leadership in the republic’s hour of maximum danger, in lieu of immediately putting 150,000 heavily armed combat troops on the ground in Portland, Seattle and wherever else is necessary with orders to restore order and authorizing overwhelming deadly force if the troops are attacked. Governors and mayors who aid, abet and encourage continuation or escalation of the street terror should be swiftly taken into custody for insurrection and with the same deadly force protocols in place should they decide to play Salvador Allende.
Yet when Meadows, who as Trump’s Chief of Staff is arguably the second most powerful person in the White House by controlling access to the President and effectively setting the agenda, appeared on Carlson’s show all Carlson could really muster was to meekly ask Meadows what he made of all the violent chaos and then, following a full-speed filibuster deflection by Meadows, Carlson meowed something about why hadn’t the Justice Department stepped in yet?
He didn’t ask Meadows the obvious: “If it was Ivanka who was getting her face slammed repeatedly into the pavement by black-garbed terror squads roaming the street at will, or if it was Don Jr. that was pelted with fireworks and set ablaze like a human scarecrow, or say if it was Jared who was chased and knocked to the ground and stomped repeatedly in his head, would the President still be waiting for an invitation to intervene from the governors and mayors? And as a follow-up, Mr. Meadows, can you describe for our audience what would happen to a mob that attempted to surround the Presidential Limousine and drag the President from it? What would that footage look like? Break it down for us.”
But Carlson was clearly playing T-ball with the Chief of Staff and Meadows appeared almost fondly amused by Carlson’s neutered mutterings.
So while Tucker Carlson occasionally has a go at taking passionless potshots at the Republicans who have been political co-conspirators in the Murder of America, he inevitably returns to the familiar chant of: “It’s the Democrats!” and thus does what clearly is expected of him by the suits who sign his paychecks. Carlson makes the case that Americans must cast their ballots for the Republican Party this fall—otherwise the country is dead. It’s a tinny echo of the Trump campaign’s entire platform: vote for me or you’ll all be living in Portland and forced to learn Mandarin. (Or as Trump would phrase it: “You’ll all be forced to speak China words from DragonLand!”)
Yet for whatever shortcomings Carlson demonstrates on his ostensibly nationalistic show, he’s certainly no Sean Hannity or Laura Ingraham. No, Hannity and Ingraham have devolved into a swinish class of their own when it comes to running cover for the looters that wear suits and the robbers armed with briefcases, blowing chaff into the screen nightly in an effort to cloud and confuse the American people’s political radar.
Since January 21, 2017, Hannity has engaged in the most stunning feat of political analingus ever programmed for public viewing, nightly burying his tongue so deep into Trump’s tuchus that he is unable to extract it and object as The Donald repeatedly veers 180-degrees away from what he pledged to voters in 2015 and 2016 and delivers precisely the opposite of the campaign vows that ushered him into the White House. With the tone of an indignant cattle auction caller, Hannity spews forth nightly the fantastical claims that have become the Trump brand in the White House: the wall is built and the border is secured, the endless wars have finally been ended and the troops are coming home, the vast American manufacturing base that was dismantled and sold off to foreign shores has been returned to America along with their union-scale wages and benefits, evil Obamacare is being replaced with a bigger, better and more ‘beautiful’ healthcare plan, and on and on and on. That virtually none of it is actually true means nothing to Hannity, of course, who like Trump seems to be attempting some rudimentary form of Neuro-Linguistic Programming.
The hard fact is that following nearly four years of Donald Trump in the White House, including two full years when the GOP had total control of Congress, the southern frontier remains in actual reality wide open and penetrable by anyone just mildly committed to crossing it sans permission even as the United States continues to legally admit more than a million immigrants annually. The hard fact is the Republican Party’s leadership—with Trump’s blessing—has worked feverishly to expand visa allotments for skilled labor applicants in high-tech fields, ensuring Americans with STEM backgrounds are forced to ‘compete’ in the ‘free market’ of saturated labor pools and struggle through life on the suppressed and stagnant wages they are designed to achieve. Just as grotesque is the hard fact that America’s eternal combat abroad rages on as always. America’s soldiers remain strewn across battlefields and unknown war zones around the globe defending countries that constitute no national security interest for the United States and often defending corrupt governments in faraway lands that actually hate America and its people.
None of that has changed in any meaningful way under Trump.
Six months since the Coronavirus pandemic exposed the gutted medical manufacturing base in the United States and revealed that the vast bulk of key medicines millions of Americans rely upon are made overseas and still a massive crash-course, Marshall Plan-scale initiative to return and restore the nation’s vital medical production base has not materialized. In spite of Trump’s fictional blather to the contrary, more than 70-percent of all medical manufacturing facilities producing active pharmaceutical ingredients used by the United States remain on foreign shores.
The collective consciousness at Fox News understands this very well, and yet it programs an inverse reality where Bush’s perverse ‘Mission Accomplished’ declaration has been updated to Trump’s fantasy roleplaying: ‘Promises Made. Promises Kept.’
It’s worth noting that as Trump’s chief resident handmaiden at Fox News, Hannity has also apparently taken on the duties of show screener for the network at Trump’s behest, the most immediate result of which was the cashiering of Ann Coulter and Michelle Malkin as frequent guests across the network’s shows. A pretend author like his old competitor at the network Bill O’Reilly, Hannity was likely gleeful as he cut Coulter and Malkin—two real best-selling authors who actually research and write their own books—have been declared heretics for factually calling out that Emperor Trump not only has no clothes but appears to be obsessed with routinely streaking on camera.
Coulter’s pounding of Trump’s shameless betrayal (an important distinction from failure of policy initiatives that were attempted but not achieved) by frequently tweeting “Wall Updates” that reported on how many miles of new wall had been completed (Hint: “Zero”) or replying to Trump’s tweet storms over whatever outrage of the moment he was spiraling over: “Gee, I wish Trump were President” so infuriated Trump that he ‘unfollowed’ Coulter and reportedly called Hannity and ordered him to see that Coulter was blackballed from Fox News.
The network eighty-sixed Malkin after she, like Coulter, refused to back down from calling out so-called ‘mainstream’ Republican leaders for their limp-wristed complicity in the ongoing arson of the American construct.
So with Coulter and Malkin, two of the most intellectually deft and tantalizing effective writers and speakers when it comes to defending American citizens and the American ideal, blacklisted at Fox News, just who is the network regularly running as its on-air brain trust?
As MAD magazine would have phrased it: The usual gang of idiots.
And it is perhaps a dark comedy when one considers that the lineup of Fox News contributors and frequent guests is something of a Who’s Who of Republicans who have happily led the party to its grave and the nation to the brink, including such GOP soothsayers as Karl Rove, Bill Bennett, Newt Gingrich, Rudy Giuliani and Ari Fleischer to name but a few and all of them men who played key roles in ensuring that America would find itself where it is today.
While these Wall Street bagmen long ago participated in the GOP’s bloodless surrender of every institutional pillar to the progressive cultists who converted them into ideological breeding hives where ‘social justice’ larvae are laid, hatched, groomed before being secreted into corporations or dispatched into the streets or kept on campus and swallowed once more by the ever-expanding franchises of the academic wormholes, Fox News summons them forth on a near daily basis to hold forth on the best way out of this unfolding disaster.
Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich recently told a nodding Laura Ingraham that it was time for Americans to “take back academia.” And he said it with a straight face. Universities and colleges across most of America were systematically abandoned to the radical Left forty years ago (this writer was on campus at the time) and the public K-12 education system was essentially handed over in the succeeding years, effectively disappearing as actual functioning schools by the dawn of the millennium at the latest.
But there’s Newt Gingrich playing make-believe on Fox News and declaring its finally time to take back the academy. But that’s the game at Fox News. Gingrich knew he could utter such rubbish without the slightest worry that Ingraham would ask him a simple question like: “Take it back with what, Newt? Your party surrendered academia nearly two generations ago, that train left the station when Reagan was still in his first term. So what are you talking about?”
No, Gingrich knew that Ingraham would nod and smile and concur and thank him for all his wit and wisdom.
On July 2, Gingrich appeared on Martha McCallum’s news hour to discuss Trump’s reelection bid and more specifically the buzz in GOP circles that Marc Tieson, Peggy Noonan and Karl Rove had created with their published warnings to Trump that very week that he needed to ‘moderate’ his campaign rhetoric. Gingrich, of course, did not disappoint the Wall Street monitors as he called for Trump to run on further tax cuts and to preach GDP growth; never mind the millions of foreign nationals imported directly or indirectly (legally or otherwise) on America’s smoldering shores despite the vast seas of unemployed citizens. And never mind the Forever Wars that Trump vowed to end if elected in 2016 that continue to rage, for Gingrich concluded that few if any in Trump’s base seemed to have noticed or cared that American GI’s around the globe continue to get their arms and legs blown off for no discernible purpose or coherent objective. Ending mass immigration, bringing the troops home and locking up street thugs and criminals was not a winning pitch, Gingrich insisted. Instead, he urged Trump to expand a campaign based on the Holy Grail of tax cuts and that would provide the recipe to sweep large numbers of the black electorate into the Republicans’ ranks and carry the GOP to victory in November.
That’s how far mentally gone Newt Gingrich was by July 2020. And Fox News keeps him talking front and center. And they say Biden has a deteriorating mental state.
It was the classic corporatist pitch that has steered the Republican’s electioneering efforts for 40 years so perhaps it is appropriate they keep chanting it in a bronchial death rattle as the GOP finally gives up the ghost.
Consider for a moment Republican Congressman Dan Crenshaw, that eye-patch sporting Texan who was propelled into the national limelight following faux moral outrage of over a harmless goof by SNL’s Pete Davidson. Crenshaw has become a standard-bearer for the Republicans and frequently appears on Fox News to prognosticate for the party. And just like Mark Meadows, Karl Rove, Newt Gingrich and every other GOP player, Crenshaw holds forth unchallenged on Fox News, even when his publicly-stated views amount to spitting in the face of the American people.
Speaking to the Leadership Institute on May 13, 2020, Crenshaw made the case for continued mass immigration (even as 40 million Americans were heading into the unemployment lines) as it comported with the needs of business:
“We need to balance [security] with business, they are not lying to us, they can’t hire Americans. They just can’t. These construction companies, these farmers, they have tried. There have been studies where, I think in Alabama, this happened, where if you get rid of all the immigrants no one will work there,” Crenshaw said. “And that’s an American cultural problem I wish we could fix. I wish our teenagers would go to work. But they don’t, so I have to be sympathetic to some of these business owners who are creating jobs, creating wealth in America and creating growth, building things, they can’t do it without anyone working there. And for some reason, people who speak English just won’t work there.”
Crenshaw’s riff, delivered casually and in an almost slightly bemused manner, perfectly encapsulates the Republican Party’s leadership’s long-held position on the American worker—or as Crenshaw frames them: “People who speak English”—who have found themselves undercut, outsourced and cutout from skilled and unskilled industries by the likes of Crenshaw working at the behest of his corporate benefactors. When Crenshaw was born in 1984, English-speaking workers were framing, roofing, plastering, dry-walling and laying cement at construction sites all over the nation for union or comparable wages. By the time Crenshaw graduated from Tuft’s University in 2006, the labor force replacement policies carried out by two Bushes and a Clinton had largely eradicated the English-speaking American from those job sites and sent developer profits skyrocketing.
But on Fox News, Crenshaw is never challenged about his views but rather presented as Nick Fury come to life, a Navy Seal Team 3 commando who nearly defeated the Taliban all by his lonesome.
Fox News’ programming heritage is littered with wild-eyed, open-border zealots who attempt to cloak their corporate agenda in the guise of a patriotic love of freedom. The former Wall Street commodities trader Eric Bolling cut an imposing presence on the network and rarely missed an opportunity to conceal his true intent behind loud denunciations of illegal immigration. But during one broadcast shortly before the network canned him in the fall of 2017, Bolling let loose with an almost ecstatic endorsement of relentless mass immigration into the United States. Bolling declared into the cameras that while illegal immigration should be halted, America should increase its net legal immigration into the country from more than a million a year to “three or four or five million immigrants a year!”
And there it is, again. Again.
A Fox News personality gleefully declaring the United States should pour literally 50 million more foreign economic refugees into the country within but a decade at the latest, all while knowing the result would annihilate any remnant of the American Dream for Americans and finalize for eternity the country’s forced conversion into a Third World crockpot—which is and always has been the end goal of Wall Street’s investor class.
Bolling’s euphoric plea for the floodgates to burst under a tide of humanity from all corners of the globe was keeping with Fox News editorial doctrine to reflect the policy initiatives of the Republican Party. As such, that he was fired at all is probably the most damning evidence supporting the allegations against him.
One was reminded of that on January 22, 2020, when The New York Times published an oddly damning indictment of just how degenerate and detached the GOP’s leadership has become—oddly because the former newspaper-turned-agitprop platform framed the story’s moral as something of a homage to the Republicans who were also fighting to pour more foreign refugees into Amarillo, Texas. Real estate broker Daniel L. Rogers, the 57-year-old Chairman of the Potter County GOP, blanched then bristled at the American citizens who described their communities, neighborhoods and quality of life being rendered unrecognizable by the flow of refugees.
As The Times reported: “Inevitably, culture clashes between longtime white and Hispanic residents (read Americans) and refugees from Africa, the Middle East and Asia are almost a daily occurrence. City Hall staff members have fielded angry phone calls from residents [reporting] that refugees were barbecuing dogs in their front yards. Newcomers unfamiliar with local laws have hunted ranchers cattle for food.”
Dogs slaughtered by migrant refugees and roasted in the front yard and the Republican Party’s response is the more the merrier.
“Bring us 10 million of those a year, if they want to be productive members and make America great and be American, not a hyphenated American,” Rogers told The Times. “Nobody cares what color somebody is or where they came from. Nobody cares.”
Well, not exactly nobody.
Sonia Rios, a 45-year-old Amarillo resident said she and her wife were fleeing the city as a result of the crime wave they had witnessed as a result of the influx of refugees, including vandalism and break-ins and what she described as refugees running wild in the streets. “We’re done,” Rios said.
But from the Republican leadership in Potter County, Texas, to the GOP servants at the Fox News studios in Manhattan, the battle cry continues: “Brings us 10 million of those a year!”
Rogers and his Republican leadership brethren may well indeed get those millions of economic refugees from all corners of the globe setting up their camp of the saints in Amarillo and around the nation, and perhaps sooner than they might imagine as the collapse of the Republic accelerates. And that in turn may produce some interesting spectacles that Rogers and the Republicans didn’t exactly bargain for even after all these decades of desertion and betrayal, like say the day they are the ones being spit-roasted over the open coals of a front yard migrant refugee barbecue blowout block party.
And that’s not sheer hyperbole, either.
In the mid-1980s this writer had friends who were in Haiti when second-generation dictator Jean-Claude ‘Baby Doc’ Duvalier fled the impoverished island nation and in the whirlwind of retribution that followed they witnessed members—or suspected members—of Duvalier’s dreaded Tonton Macoute security apparatus being hunted down, overwhelmed and literally roasted in the street by mobs. So perhaps Rogers and the Republicans should have been a little more discerning in their long-running global flier party, but it’s a little late for that now.
Which returns us to the penultimate predicament that Fox News now finds itself in as the steaming shit sandwich of consequences is finally placed on the table in front of it. The network, like the nation, is most surely screwed no matter who wins in November.
Trump certainly could pull off another legitimate win—there are possibly even more voters now who will cast their ballot for him without admitting it than there were in 2016. And despite the media narrative regarding the black vote, in actual reality the sole determining factor of whether Donald Trump remains in office rests exclusively once more with the white vote. It will once more simply come down to whether he can not just turn out the working class white vote but enlarge it in the key Midwest battlegrounds and in states like North Carolina while holding on to suburban whites in the Sunbelt and picking more of them up in states like Colorado and New Hampshire.
But it won’t matter even if he does win reelection. The fundamentals for the GOP are all pointing in the same direction, whether it arrives in 2020 or 2024 isn’t of much consequence. And the fate of the nation will follow it quickly.
Trump and the Republicans have done nothing—nothing—over the past four years as the cultural Maoists have unleashed their withering campaign at silencing dissenting views across virtually all social media and other tech platforms. Brazen and mass censorship carried out in the bright light of day has been celebrated by the progressive cult members as ‘deplatforming hate’ (and as Kafka could tell ya, arguing that it’s actually an authoritarian purge only proves to the progressive cultists that you are a ‘hatemonger,’ ‘racist,’ ‘[fill in the blank]-aphobe,’ etc.), while Trump and the Republican caucus have essentially sat back and watched this circular logic devour dissent online, on campus, at the workplace and in the public square. And it won’t stop there.
And they don’t care.
In order for Trump to actually do something of consequence, Jack Dorsey would have to deactivate Trump’s Twitter account. And make no mistake about it, that day is indeed coming, but Dorsey is too savvy a trimmer to act prematurely when Trump and the GOP still retain some significant powers. So he’ll bide his time and strike when the fortunes of the fall become clearer.
It’s a dereliction of duty and a betrayal that predates the digital debacle by decades, as conservative or culturally protectionist viewpoints were systematically eliminated over a long campaign of control at newspapers, magazines and across traditional television broadcast networks. The only viable platform for conservative and traditional cultural protectionist viewpoints that survived the purge was talk radio and it became a national redoubt of sorts for primarily white populist perspectives and also wildly successful. As such, practically the entire format of am talk radio en banc was immediately dubbed ‘hate radio’ (again, to the progressive cult members, opposition of any sort in any format is by their stated definition a matter of ‘hate’ and must be labeled and attacked as such) and targeted for destruction, with Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity prioritized trophies in the big game hunt to shut them down.
The cultural Maoists that makeup the progressive People’s Temple political death cult that’s on the march from sea to shining sea in America today have assembled a powerful attack strategy that focuses on the advertising base of formats and platforms they’ve identified as political heretics or potentially effective opponents.
Fox News has not been spared, the attacks against it will only escalate in the coming months and years, assuming it takes that long, and it will not survive in any way that resembles what it claims to be today.
And the network’s ratings will not save it, any more than Mike Lindell and My Pillow will.
A Trump return to the White House and even if the GOP holds the Senate will change nothing of the fundamental dynamics facing Fox News and all other media outlets that have shilled for the GOP for decades as the Republican Party sat idly by over the past four years as hundreds of prominent naysayers were blatantly banned, shadow banned, downgraded and disappeared in a very public manner by Big Tech.
So imagine what it all looks like for Fox News if the Ghost Ship of Joe Biden wins in November.
Trump’s inaction will be supplanted by the Jacobian horde behind Biden and their final drive to seize total control will kick into slaughter house mode. Any delusions that Fox News will be allowed to exist as it has for the past generation will be quickly put to the sword through a variety of means and measures directed at the network, its staff and its advertisers.
But if Biden wins in November, watch the Republican ratlines for some very familiar faces as previously seen on TV scurry like hell for safety that they are unlikely to ever find again.
And maybe that’s justice, of the cosmic variety, after all.
As human waste runs into Seattle’s waterfront and wasted humans continue to run amok throughout the seaside city’s streets, the glittering skyline above casts an ominous glow on the festering boil of dysfunction below
By Mark Cromer
It’s an early autumn evening and having returned across Puget Sound from a pleasant day spent out on Bainbridge Island I am heading out of Seattle and making my way back to Issaquah, driving south on 1st Avenue toward its slow curve at Pioneer Square that runs from Cherry Street down toward Yester Way and further south the city’s sister sports stadium-temples where the masses gather for high-priced sacrificial rites when I notice the cars in front of me are beginning to break intermittently; slowing before suddenly gunning it once more.
Debris in the roadway?
Then I see him. A lone man walking northbound through the middle of the street with his arms raised at his sides, fists clenched, staring into each car as it approaches him before launching a half-lunge toward the vehicles, as if he were going to start a fight with every passing auto, though seemingly careful not to make contact. As each car passes, each car gets the same treatment even as he keeps walking northbound, chest-puffed like he just scored a UFC knockout in the first 12 seconds.
As my turn with him arrives I catch his face for a moment as he approaches the hood of my mid-sized SUV and it looks familiar, well, at least to the extent that I have seen it before worn by thousands of other men and women all over this city and its surrounding environs for the past six years: heavily weathered and pocked with the debris of hard living and yet ablaze with a pair of eyes that burn like a wildfire from some ethereal plane none of us would care to see. He performs his ‘I’ll kick your car’s ass!’ maneuver as I pass and while I don’t hear a word I can see his lips are moving as fast as a tentpole preacher struck by the Holy Spirit at a backwoods gospel revival and almost certainly making as much sense as if he were speaking in tongues. He’s not dressed in ceremonial robes or sporting a religious collar, but he is wrapped in the multilayered uniform patched and melded together over what surely appears to be years of handouts and shoplifts.
I accelerate and slide safely past the madman and as I make my way down to the I-90 for the short cruise east into the hillside suburbs I ponder that in Pamplona crazy adventurers run with the bulls but in Seattle the homeless urban berserkers now charge the cars. Well, all things considered in late 2019, that’s neither an outlier nor a surprise in Seattle and the social ill’s intransience and expansion is a sign of a tide that continues to rise amid political acrimony and accusation that’s simply a dead giveaway that the government at every level has no idea what to do and the corporations that own this city don’t really care as long as their shareholders don’t.
A short while later I settled comfortably in with a nightcap and contemplated how Seattle—just like its sister cities of any size up and down America’s Western shoreline—has indeed become the proverbial ‘tale of two cities,’ a not so empty cliché rooted in the brilliance of Charles Dickens classic novel that’s been too easily tossed casually about in the past during dinner party badinage among the finely feathered class about Dickens’ epic opener of it being the best of times and the worst of times, an era of wisdom and foolishness, of belief and incredulity.
Timeless words for sure and too easily applied ever since he penned them, but no, Seattle really is a tale of two cities in the 21stCentury that embodies an age of extreme wealth and stupefying poverty, of vast knowledge and fevered idiocy, of cultish belief and rabid denunciation. Except it’s not a tale. It’s all too true.
A few months ago I was out on the Salish Sea for what has become a summertime ritual of mine that takes me out of Anacortes and past the San Juan Islands and often into Canadian waters where Humpback whales and Orca are still to be found for now, though the fate of the resident killer whale pods in and around Puget Sound have teetered ever closer to oblivion as the pressures of humankind’s relentless growth as manifested in commercial shipping, fleet fishing and the ground war of development that has rolled across Northern Washington and slammed into its rivers that transport the salmon runs the resident Orca pods rely upon. This particular sojourn turned into quite a treat as a transient pod of killer whales swept in to hunt seals that had sought shelter on an outcropping of rocks. While the resident Orcas of the J,K and L pods feed on salmon, transient killer whales that visit these waters hunt sea mammals and watching them circle and loiter off the islet before rushing it, sometimes in pairs and from different directions was an awe-inspiring sight to behold.
They are iconic creatures across much of the globe but perhaps nowhere more so than the Pacific Northwest, where they have enjoyed a spiritual connection with the indigenous peoples for centuries and long before they became a tragic theme park attraction and an evergreen giftshop keepsake.
But just as the streets of Seattle have gone quite literally to shit of the human strain, so too has much of the complex and fragile ecosystem supporting the Orcas up and down the state, as its continually buffeted by human deuces of every conceivable variety—including the real deal. On July 19 of this year, more than 3 million gallons of raw human sewage poured from the West Point Treatment Plant, a sprawling facility in the city’s northwest Magnolia neighborhood, into Puget Sound. It was a massive shit slush that prompted authorities to immediately close beaches and, as The Seattle Times dryly noted: “banning [people] from making direct contact with the water.”
Gee, don’t take a dip in poop harbor? Put off that kayaking trip in bacteria bay? Good idea! But what of the creatures for whom the sound is home, the creatures for whom a massive wave of human fecal sludge rolling into their neighborhood is just the latest in a long and bitter history of defilements? Where are they supposed to go? According to the Washington State Department of Ecology, mere contact with the polluted seawater or its inflows in estuaries could result for humans in upper respiratory infections, skin ailments and gastroenteritis (a bacterial infection that results in…wait for it: the shits) among other mild to more serious maladies, so then imagine what the average harbor seal was looking at in his home waters. Or the fish they feed on and all manner of sea-reliant birds.
And while massive raw human sewage spills are not entirely rare events up in Northern Washington—one previously struck in June that closed Golden Gardens Park on the shoreline of Ballard—they are hardly the only hammer blows the ecosystem is suffering.
In a five-part special section published by The Seattle Times this fall that offered an in-depth look at where the human-fueled crisis has led the struggling resident Orca pods—and in doing so once again demonstrated what an old broadsheet still holding on from the glory days of legacy print media can accomplish when it wants to—summed it up in its closing installment Hostile Waters: Chasing A Memory, complete with a powerful shot of an Orca exploding from the water in full breach, and posing the question: “In California, Orcas and salmon have become so scarce, people have forgotten what once was. Will the Northwest be next?”
The answer seems quite obvious: yes, it will be. In fact, it already is.
Well not so much that what once was will soon be forgotten, for enough of it is still here to easily remember, but Washington’s becoming California has been long in the making, and as a writer who has lived in both states I have witnessed the transition of Northern Washington into a knock-off of my native Southern California for years now. Orcas still appear along the shorelines of Southern California, but it’s an event of such rarity that it garners news coverage when they’re seen. To understand the fate of the Orca in California and Washington one only need to consider that the North American Gray Wolf prowled with pride across California, along with the cougar and of course the California Grizzly Bear which still adorns the state’s flag as something of a memorial to a once wonderous creature the state hunted to extinction a century ago. Efforts to reintroduce the Grizzly into the Sierra Nevada mountain range has been met with resistance from developers and civic officials.
The Gray Wolf was also hunted completely out of the state about a century ago, but in 2011 a single radio-collared male managed to make his way down from Oregon into Northern California and over time his offspring followed and also spread into Nevada. In May of 2018, the San Francisco Chronicle reported the suspected eventual fate of a breeding pair of wolves that settled into Northern California in 2015 and began a pack, one of the first in a century and known to biologists for their distinctive coats. The ‘Shasta Pack’ as they were dubbed killed and ate domestic livestock and, as the newspaper reported, all but one disappeared completely from California shortly afterward, with a single male from the young pack straggling into Nevada. Amaroq Weiss at the Center for Biological Diversity who studies wolf migration, told The Chronicle that the rest of the new wolf pack had been hunted down by ranchers hellbent on never allowing the Gray Wolf to return to the state. Local ranchers had bragged, Weiss told the newspaper, they would “employ the Three-S solution” if the wolves appeared around their ranches: “Shoot. Shovel. Shut-up.”
So in California just a few years ago, a cow is killed and eaten by a small pack of returning wolves and area ranchers form a posse and gleefully ride out to track down and slaughter the entire pack. What chance do you think the Grizzly stands should they be returned to even a fraction of their former range in California?
As for the California Cougar, which faced its own century-long firing squad in the Golden State until voters finally turned a moratorium on hunting the mountain lion into a complete ban (aside from the usual caveats for permitted killings for big cats that inconvenience humans, er, ‘ranchers’), the real threat for its continued existence today, particularly in Southern California, is not from gunfire but rather the loss of contiguous, viable habitat. Collared cats are monitored on websites and cheered by viewers not unlike a video game as they successfully cross the I-405 and other paved strings of the traffic spiderweb that is the Southland, until of course they don’t make it.
How does all of this correspond with the fate of the Orca in the waters of Northern Washington? Well, consider the fate of the Gray Wolf in Washington, where like in California it was hunted to near extinction at the dawn of the 20th Century. Nearly a century after the Gray Wolf population in Washington State was hovering somewhere between a handful and zero, biologists in the state today are heralding the return of the wolf, with somewhere between 126 wolves to perhaps more than 200 currently in the Evergreen State, depending on the source. Officially, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife reported in April of this year that in 2018 the state was home to 126 wolves across 27 packs with 15 successfully breeding pairs. The numbers certainly suggest a surge back from the brink in less than a decade ago, when according to Conservation Northwest the Gray Wolf in Washington numbered just 27 wolves in five packs with three breeding pairs.
But that recovery, as promising as it may look on paper, is just about as thin and durable. In the 1800s, the Gray Wolf could be found in virtually every region of Washington, their actual numbers unknown much beyond the anecdotal reports from settlers that they encountered them pretty much everywhere. Today, a mere 126 or more wolves with 15 breeding pairs that have held on in some places and are returning to others in Washington is considered a stunning success.
For public agencies to boast that ‘the wolf is back and here to stay’ in Washington is little more than empty rhetoric that while as hopeful as it may be is ultimately dangerous as it provides the public with a false sense of problem solved. As development explodes and ranchers continue to poach effectively at will, legally or otherwise, the reproductive nucleus of 15 breeding pairs of wolves in a state the size of Washington should inspire nothing more than continued angst, at least among the few up here who aren’t sporting their ‘12th Man’ jersey most days of the week, particularly when it’s viewed through the prism of the state’s leadership in Olympia and the collective brain trust that prevails in Seattle and their combined success in protecting the Orca by implementing policies that at least might work in this late hour when the killer whales face what may well be their sudden end.
Which brings me back to the homeless urban berserker walking through traffic and challenging all manner of vehicles that passed him as he lurched his way to either a shelter bed, a jail bunk, a hospital gurney or a sleeping bag in or outside of a tent somewhere on a street around waterfront Seattle. As I’ve watched the city finally dispatch its garish Alaskan Way Viaduct this year, the double-decker of a dump bathed an inviting vomit gray that shunted drivers along its prime waterfront and provided a solid roof for the stretch of homeless encampments underneath, I realize that while the city managed to demolish this historic eyesore it remains paralyzed when confronted with the concrete-hard question of what to do with the thousands of men and women that continue to dance their wild-eyed waltz around town.
They have no idea what to do, at least beyond declaring that they do and then watching it continue unabated. If they can’t—and they clearly can’t—figure out what to do about thousands of people unloading their bowels in public around town each day, what chance do the Orcas really have as 3 million gallons of human waste pour into Puget Sound now and again? If they can’t figure out what to do as the junkies turn Seattle into Needle Park, then do you really think they can rise to the occasion of handling the vital salmon runs that numbered more than 53,000 in the early 1970s but by 2017 had evaporated to just around 977? If they can’t keep a habitual criminal with plenty of violent crimes on his rap sheet off the street for more than 24-hours after he’s committed yet another crime against a fellow citizen, is it likely they actually can actually come through for the killer whales, wolves, cougars and bears that don’t vote?
On Tuesday, Seattle voters will go to the polls for what The Seattle Times has declared will be a ‘gut check’ moment for the city’s residents. I disagree. Puget Sound is rapidly becoming Poop Harbor, out on the water and onshore. This is not the time for a civic gut check, but rather a brain scan.
Speaking of which, I don’t need a nightcap to take the edge off this, but it does help.
The Republican Party’s long funeral procession, led by its corporate pimps turned pallbearers, is now on final approach to its electoral gravesite where it will be politically buried along with the country and culture it completely betrayed
By Mark Cromer
“Western civilization is going down the tubes and we don’t even need an earthquake to finish it. We’re performing music for the final dance of death and…aw, you know what? Truth lies beyond the grave.”
— Jim Morrison to Ian Whitcomb, Summer 1967
The old American warlord John McCain discovered last year whether or not Morrison’s observation on the veritas of oblivion proved to be a cosmically cogent estimate of what we are all destined to find on ‘the other side,’ but Morrison’s take on the self-immolation of Western civilization in the here and now of this world was and remains undeniably on the money.
The jazz funeral for the West that Morrison described during that gilded Summer of Love more than 52-years ago has continued its long parade, devolving as it has into a tech device-lit bloody spectacle replete with mass consumer gluttony that’s self-administered as a morphine drip to numb the creeping sense of dread that has spread across America and its cultural cousins. But even the ever escalating doses of dope and digital distractions aren’t enough to quell the percolating sense of doom that now transcends mere partisan affiliation as the national prognosis becomes ever more clear that the jig is just about up.
But of course, as Morrison’s observation to British one-hit wonder Whitcomb in a Sunset Boulevard diner back during the Johnson Administration attests, this long funeral procession is marking the death of a culture—and the nation states it once breathed life into—that has been terminally ill for decades.
The unfolding collapse of the West has been an epic demolition on such a mass scale that it surely rivals the collapse of Imperial Rome in antiquity and surpasses it with the swiftness of its death. And like the fall of Rome, the death of the West is a massive re-landscaping that was made possible by the deep and expansive veins of greed-fed corruption that its ruling elites have woven throughout the power structures from which they govern, like deadly spiders spinning a powerful web of self-dealing and unjust enrichment at the expense of those who labor futilely under their profit centers presented as social policy initiatives. In the mid-1980s Jello Biafra of the seminal punk band Dead Kennedys remarked rather glibly to an audience of students (this writer was in the crowd that night) at SUNY Stony Brook: “If voting really worked, they’d never allow it.” It was a throwaway line probably cribbed from some earlier figure in history that yet sounded at least somewhat clever in that era marked by the prevalence of Bolivian powder and passion for its jet-fueled excess. But Biafra’s smug utterance has oddly proved to be resilient enough to not only stand the test of time, but like a fine wine it has aged quite well. For today it is simply undeniable that the corrosion and rot infecting the eventual successor empire to ancient Rome has resulted in a vast if somewhat slow motion sociopolitical implosion that has continued despite the electoral wailing and raging of the Vox populi at the ballot box in protest. More than three years after voters in the United Kingdom cast their ballots to leave the European Union the yoke of the globalist confederation remains firmly over the once proud island nation.The fate of Brexit spotlights not only the insidious subjugation of the British through bureaucratic obfuscation and delay, a very public murder of the popular will through process and protocol, but in its glare is also revealed the true motives of those who wield power and the hour of reckoning that now arrives for the Western world.
And that is but one of the many grim hallmarks of the total disconnect between the governing and governed—more aptly described now as the ruling and the ruled—that punctuate a cultural disintegration as the geographic borders that once outlined and meaningfully defined the sovereign states of the West are simply erased amid the relentless stampede of the aided and abetted mass migrations across them.
From public gang rapes in Cologne to the beheading of a British soldier on the streets of London, from the explosion of cartel-related kidnappings in Phoenix to the teeming and violently chaotic No-Go Zones of Paris and Malmö where France and Sweden have become dangerous places for ethnic French and Swedes (and, it turns out, a 60 Minutes film crew dispatched there to ‘debunk’ the myth of No-Go Zones—which was promptly attacked in the street by a migrant gang as the cameras rolled) and even more perilous for any who would dare wear a Yarmulke and to the former universities across the United States that have been repurposed as cloistered five-star ideological grooming spas which are now intellectual No-Go Zones for American citizens who believe in the nation as a nation and are even more perilous for those who would risk the political fashion outrage of sporting a MAGA ball cap, the Death of The West is a very public affair.
In Germany, that old and once proud nation that was brutally bifurcated by a grand alliance that had quickly soured after the shooting stopped into the post-war Mexican standoff of East versus West with the bristling guns of the Warsaw Pact and NATO pointed at each other as the world held its breath, well, today that reunified and semi-sovereign-on-paper ‘country’ can’t even meet basic recruitment rates to fill the ranks of its own military enough to adequately defend its own reconstituted body. Understandably, headlines even now in late 2019 datelined Berlin and heralding ‘Germany Re-Arms!’ might still trigger hurried evacuations in Paris and London and prompt Moscow to declare a state of emergency and mobilize to war-footing, but the fact is the Kremlin need not worry about the Germany that rolled into Russia twice during the 20th Century. It simply no longer exists—and not just as a darkly antagonistic state hell bent on mass-murder in delusional pursuit of some ethnic-based lebensraum. It has vanished as a nation state that’s able to defend its own country’s frontiers and the nation’s interior from either perceived threats or very real ones. It relies instead on paperwork and the generous largess of the American people, quite content to live under a ‘security guarantee’ provided by America’s sons and daughters. The memo-waving moneyed bureaucratic worm that squirms west across the Vistula today makes the flaccid Weimar Republic look like Europa’s dangerously roaring lion of old.
In Paris, President Emmanuel Macron—the French version of Robert Francis O’Rourke (better known by his nom de pop crush: ‘Beto!’)—has remained steadfast in his commitment to the effective erasure of the nation that was revolutionary America’s older sister-in-arms, with his administration merely the latest in a long bureaucratic shuffle that has collaborated with those seeking its dissolution, a betrayal of a vintage not seen since the dark days of Vichy, for the French appear to have again evacuated Paris without much of a fight. France, that beautiful beacon of fundamental human freedoms that she has evidenced in everything from her culinary menu to her talent for coitus, is being washed away in a treacherously ministerial manner filled with doublespeak and double-dares that would surely have de Gaulle, to say nothing of Napoléon (who while remembered for the feats of his Grande Armée left an enduring legacy across France and much of Europe that includes a civil code, secular education and he codified French as the nation’s official language), wondering what the hell has happened?
Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité? Well, as Camus once wrote: “Dream, monsieur, cheap dream. A trip to the Indies!”
And as for Britannia, well London has indeed fallen.
Today Her Majesty’s crown of a capital has seen its ethnic British population be reduced to under 30% by a relentless immigration blitz that has forever remade it in the image of those whose eyes light up at the euphemism: ‘world city.’ It’s a demographic carpet bombing that left The Who’s legendary Union Jack-sporting frontman Roger Daltrey smoldering with rage as he considered it on-the-record in 2013, no longer stuttering when he’s talkin’ bout his generation’s greatest betrayal, telling The Sunday Times: “I will never, ever forgive the Labour Party for allowing this mass immigration with no demands put on what people should be paid when they come to this country. I will never forgive them for destroying the jobs of my mates, because they allowed their jobs to be undercut with stupid thinking on Europe, letting them all in, so they can live 10 to a room, working for Polish wages.”
Steven Morrissey, the former frontman for The Smiths who achieved an iconic rock status nearly as equal to what Daltry managed with The Who, has weighed in repeatedly as well to the smoldering chagrin of the lockstep Left: “England is a memory now,” Morrisesey told the venerable New Musical Express back in 2007. “The gates are flooded and anybody can have access to England and join in…Although I don’t have anything against people from other countries, the higher the influx into England the more the British identity disappears. So the price is enormous. Travel to England and you have no idea where you are. It matters because the British identity is very attractive.”
As The New York Times recently reported, the United Kingdom’s military has atrophied so much over the past two decades it has reached a point where analysts have determined it can no longer adequately protect the island nation from another hostile nation-state without resorting to its nuclear umbrella. Of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council—the über-exclusive World War II winner’s club—Britain and France no longer possess militaries capable of carrying the fight to a foreign adversary of any note and would not be able to long sustain a successful defense of their respective homelands. If Argentina wants to militarily reassert their historic claim to the Malvinas (or as Margaret Thatcher reminded the world in 1982 of what the UK considers them: ‘The Falkland Islands’), well, now would be the time.
And in America, the makeover that has rolled through Europe looks like little more than a touch-up when contrasted against the mass population renovation Washington kicked off with the Immigration and Naturalization Act of 1965 and subsequently supplemented two decades later with the Simpson-Mazzoli Act, a mass amnesty which triggered an earthquake across Mexico that produced a tsunami of mass illegal immigration that rolled across the southern frontier of the United States that has yet to subside more than three decades later.
Back in the day when Morrison caught a whiff of this funeral pyre when it was still quite early in the burn, he knew an inevitable three-alarm house fire when he saw one—and determined there was little to do but lyrically document it, put a score to it and dance amid the firelight. In the United States, the political sabotage that has led to the passing of an American way of life has been largely orchestrated and managed by the business interests that effectively completed their takeover of the Republican Party during the Reagan era and has ever since carefully led it down a path of shedding national identity and interest in exchange for a world order that enshrined global markets offering a dividend of a glittering empire for its shareholders that make up the governing class.
But like a virus that infects and feeds off a host organism until it is dead, the looming electoral fate of the GOP now suggests the disease of unadulterated greed that defines the Republican Party’s leadership is now entering its end stage.
The Republican Party’s death ride into political irrelevance on the national stage and the subsequent consequences that will clearly befall American citizens of every stripe as the former republic dissolves into a polyglot, balkanized mess that’s subject to one-party rule has stoked a bitter sense of betrayal throughout much of what constituted the foundation of the GOP since 1972: working class and middle class whites. While the great exodus of white working class voters from their century old political roost in the Democratic Party started with a dribble in 1964 and then began in earnest in 1968—just enough so to reward Richard Nixon’s appeals to them with a squeaker of a win over Vice President Hubert Humphrey while southern firebrand George Wallace carried five states and swiped 10 million voters from the two parties—by 1980 Ronald Reagan was able to roll up staggering margins among the very voters that had been the Democrats’ bedrock bloc since industrialization, trouncing President Jimmy Carter by a nearly 10 million ballot margin in a 478 electoral vote blowout.
Four years later, the political realignment of ‘the hard hats’ (and rednecks) appeared complete and Reagan buried Walter Mondale by winning nearly 17 million more votes than the former vice president and reaching 525 electoral votes, leaving the Democratic standard-bearer with a single state win and 13 electoral votes—a political annihilation more stunning in its scope and depth than LBJ’s obliteration of Barry Goldwater in 1964, an election when Johnson was still able to carry more of the states that had made up the Confederacy than Goldwater even while his administration expanded its commitment in legislative deed to the Civil Rights movement.
In 1988, the Republicans were able to score their third consecutive presidential victory and make George H. W. Bush the first incumbent vice president since Martin Van Buren in 1836 to win. But while the Democrats seemed on the brink of literally unraveling as a viable national political party following Massachusetts Governor Michael Dukakis’s bloodless apparatchik campaign, underneath the sea of familiar red that was painted across the United States election map were some very telling numbers.
For starters, while Bush was largely able to run most of the electoral board from coast to coast, including rolling up wins in the big enchiladas of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Ohio, Florida, Texas and California, the white working and middle class popular vote juggernaut that Reagan had commanded in 1980 and 1984 lost notable steam with Bush on the ballot. Dukakis was able to narrow the popular vote loss by more than half—to a mere crushing 6 million voters. But it proved to be, in fact, the very real silver lining the Democrats needed to see (as an activist Democrat at the time, this writer was one of them), as illusory as it may have appeared in that dark winter of January 1989.
In the coming decade, after the Republican Party has been buried as a relevant player nationally, political historians may well look back at the period between the swearing in of Bush as the 1980s came to a close and the dawn of 1992 as something of an emergency protocol period for the Democrats, a pivot in which the national party’s heavyweights decided that the demographic complexion of the electorate had yet to be sufficiently altered enough to abandon white working and middle class voters altogether.
And in that moment of the Democrats’ existential panic lay the live birth of William Jefferson Clinton’s presidency.
The advent of Bill Clinton’s improbable 1992 campaign and its repeated resurrections on the road to victory that November was and remains nothing short of a pilot able to pull a jetliner out of a death spiral and not only safely land the plane but pull up to the gate on time and with a courtesy round on the captain. And all of that happened—indeed it only happened—because Clinton and Gore navigated the party back to a political agenda that appealed to working class and middle class whites as almost as candidly as Nixon’s 1968 and ’72 runs did. Thus the Boston-to-Austin axis of the party’s 1988 ticket was jettisoned for two Southern everymen who could speak effectively with—not just down to—white Americans. Make no mistake about it: that was the very core of the Democrats so-called ‘Third Way’ and it worked, saving the life of the Democratic Party and its national viability while the mass immigration that was by then reshaping much of America well outside the southwest continued to run its course. In essence, the Democrats’ ticket of Clinton/Gore in 1992 and again in 1996 and all the policy measures and social signaling it entailed were designed to buy desperately needed time for the Democrats with white voters while the remaking of America continued apace.
This was critical because America in 1990 was a much different place than it is now, three decades down the road, having still more in common in several vital respects to the America of 1970 than it does with an approaching 2020 in the United States. Thirty years ago, America’s population had reached 248 million people, of which nearly 76% were classified by the U.S. Census Bureau as ‘white, non-Hispanic.’ More than three out of every four Americans identified as ethnically white when Clinton hit the campaign trail—a fact that was never lost on him and his good ‘ole boy sensibilities were summoned on demand and to impressive effect. In contrast, Bush seemed to drift about the hustings at times bewildered but more often just bored, having already taken a series of unexpectedly powerful punches throughout the primaries by the renegade candidacy of Patrick J. Buchanan, who had the cast iron stones to take on a sitting president whose approval ratings had pierced 90% in the aftermath of Desert Storm. While Bush’s road to the nomination was never really in doubt, Buchanan’s populist plank proved devastatingly effective at painting Bush & Co. as hopelessly detached from the common American, finishing the detail on the composite sketch of the Kennebunkport yachtsman that Texas Governor Ann Richards had started back in ’88 when she drawled that Bush had been born with a silver foot in his mouth.
Buchanan drew blood as he railed against a ‘King George’ that was comfortably out-of-touch in Imperial Washington and surrounded by a congressional cohort that was equally dismissive of the average American citizen.
At its fundamental essence, Buchanan’s fire-breathing run in 1992 drafted much of what would become the basic blueprint for Trump’s 2016 campaign, a campaign that unapologetically made naked appeals to white working and middle class voters based on their cultural values and laced them with dire warnings of what the future held if the elites in Washington were allowed to continue plotting the course of the nation with no real regard for the fate of the American people. It was a message that earned Buchanan nearly 25% of the total GOP primary voters that year (clocking more than 35% in some key states) and by the time the campaign arrived at the convention Bush had clearly been gored. Enraged by Buchanan’s costly challenge but deathly afraid of the consequences that would ensue if they were to deny him entrée at the convention, Bush and the GOP establishment swallowed hard and offered Buchanan a prized opening night speech at the Republican National Convention in Houston. Already despised by the Bush clan and its East Coast power structure for the gleefully unvarnished mockery Buchanan had leveled while on the stump at the blue-blooded ‘country club crowd’ that Bush epitomized, the GOP establishment’s blood ran arctic cold as Buchanan made it clear there was no love lost, unleashing a primetime stem-winder that would be instantly immortalized as the ‘Culture Wars speech’ for its clarion call to the battlements over what he declared was a war for more than just America’s future, but for the very soul of the nation itself.
“My friends, this election is about much more than who gets what. It is about who we are. It is about what we believe. It is about what we stand for as Americans,” Buchanan told a packed Astrodome. “There is a religious war going on in our country for the soul of America. It is a cultural war, as critical to the kind of nation we will one day be as was the Cold War itself. And in that struggle for the soul of America, Clinton & Clinton are on the other side, and George Bush is on our side. And so, we have to come home, and stand beside him.”
The appeal to the white working and middle class voters that Buchanan had keenly sensed were increasingly feeling dismissively ignored by Bush and the establishment to ‘come home’ was the required boilerplate Buchanan had to offer, but if it seemed incongruous that was because it was undeniably clear as to what animated Buchanan’s passion as he recounted the America and the Americans he encountered while out on the stump.
“There were the workers at the James River Paper Mill, in the frozen North Country of New Hampshire—hard, tough men, one of whom was silent, until I shook his hand. Then he looked up in my eyes and said, ‘Save our jobs!’ There was the legal secretary at the Manchester airport on Christmas Day who told me she was going to vote for me, then broke down crying, saying, ‘I’ve lost my job, I don’t have any money; they’ve going to take away my daughter. What am I going to do?’
My friends, even in tough times, these people are with us. They don’t read Adam Smith or Edmund Burke, but they came from the same schoolyards and playgrounds and towns as we did. They share our beliefs and convictions, our hopes and our dreams. They are the conservatives of the heart.”
It was Buchanan’s clear warning offered as an appeal to the Bush cronies that glared down at him from their skyboxes in the stadium that if the party continued down the path of supporting not just a business-first agenda but a business-only agenda, surrendering the sovereignty of the nation as well as retreating utterly from the cultural battlefields of academia, the popular media, the entertainment industry and other critical fronts, then the collapse of the party would inevitably precede the disintegration of the American nation. Buchanan knew that Clinton was connecting on a very basic, human level with white working class and middle class voters, and that his numerous peccadillos were insignificant to a critical bloc of voters that were beginning to slide into a sense of embittered abandonment. He may have pegged Clinton as something of a charlatan, but he knew simply dismissing Clinton as ‘Slick Willie’ was a recipe for disaster. Buchanan knew that Clinton was actually campaigning where and with whom it still counted and he was talking their talk and listening to white voters—not just lecturing or ignoring them.
“They are our people. And we need to reconnect with them,” Buchanan told the crowd. “We need to let them know we know they’re hurting. They don’t expect miracles, but they need to know we care.”
It was a seminal moment in American political history and it proved to be a prescient foretelling of what lay ahead for the nation. And it also marked the last time that a true believer of America as a nation state and as a democratic republic founded on Western ideals and values would be allowed to speak at either major parties national convention. Senator Zell Miller’s blazing keynote speech at the Republican National convention in 2004 has been compared with Buchanan’s 1992 barnburner, but the old Georgia Democrat bolted his party in 2004 not to raise the general alarm on the home front but rather to endorse continued American intervention abroad. When Miller stood at the dais in Madison Square Garden to deliver his scathing rebuke of Sen. John Kerry and the national Democratic Party he spoke relentlessly of who could be trusted to wage a global war against terrorism. At a moment in history when hundreds of thousands of American combat troops were locked in the bloody morasses of Afghanistan and Iraq even as millions of illegal immigrants were successfully crossing the United States’ southern frontier each year and exploding communities under the sheer weight of the migration, nary a word about mass immigration or border security was uttered by Miller. The words ‘immigration,’ ‘border,’ ‘sovereignty,’ and ‘culture’ do not appear at all in Miller’s speech and the word ‘nation’ appears only once.
Pat Buchanan’s 1992 appeal was focused on saving a nation and its dominant culture, but by 2004 Zell Miller’s speech was a stark cry for continued American military intervention across the globe. It was a telling evolution and one that reflected just who controlled the Republican Party and indeed to what end.
The Democratic Party’s Hail Mary pass with Clinton in 1992 paid off and the GOP didn’t see red so much as they did blue in critical states that Clinton/Gore managed not only to recapture, but in fact drop a heavy enough anchor in that it would see the Republicans driven from them in national contests to come. Clinton was able to mount electoral rich trophies like New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Ohio, Michigan and California on the walls of the Democrats’ War Room, alongside the spiffy desk decorations of Georgia, Louisiana, Arizona, Colorado, Montana and Nevada. It was a major conquest and a dizzying reversal of fortune that was rooted in appeals to the white working voter that delivered a margin of victory for Clinton/Gore of more than 100 Electoral College votes along with 5 million more popular vote ballots than Bush/Quayle. While a narrative has emerged in certain circles in the aftermath of the 1992 election that it was the independent campaign of billionaire H. Ross Perot that cost Bush his reelection, that’s little more than pure speculation dressed up as a conclusion and one that unsurprisingly seemed to comfort the Republican power players. A plainspoken Texan with a Texas-sized wallet, Perot shocked the political duopoly by managing to do something in 1992 that hadn’t been done since 1968: run a viable ‘third party’ candidacy nationally. Perot’s entry into the general election race shook Washington because his message—not unlike George Wallace’s in 1968 and to a somewhat lesser degree John Anderson’s in 1980—was a populist appeal (Perot was a billionaire but he spoke the language of the common man and organized labor) but unlike his fellow Son of The South’s campaign in 1968, Perot’s campaign was matched with a checkbook that made him a viable national player out of the gate. And anyone who was there and paying attention remembers the sea of United We Stand lawn signs that suddenly sprang up across the nation like California wild flowers after an unusual rainy season. Veteran political observers at the time comforted themselves amid this unexpected turn of events by noting Perot was drawing support from polar opposites of the established political spectrum, drawing prospective voters from the camps of liberal Democrat Sen. Howard Metzenbaum to conservative Republican Sen. Jesse Helms, and they surmised that such a wildly divergent appeal couldn’t possibly last come that November. But they were likely wrong, as they calculated Perot’s ultimate election day appeal though the only prism they were familiar with: a label-laden affair of ‘conservative Republicans’ and ‘liberal Democrats’ and the so called ‘moderate’ middle that would break to one party or another on election day.
Maybe it would have, but perhaps Perot would have pulled off Trump’s astounding feat a quarter century before the Manhattan apparent billionaire managed it.
But we’ll never know what Perot might have managed to do come election day had he not self-sabotaged his campaign along the way; first by falling asleep at the wheel and selecting Admiral James Stockdale as his placeholder running mate that then became his permanent running mate after Perot suffered some sort of mid-campaign nervous breakdown and withdrew from the race while bizarrely accusing the Republicans of attempting to ruin his daughter’s wedding. Yes, that actually happened. Returning to sanity or maybe sobering up, at least for awhile, Perot jumped back into the race in time to make the debates where he clearly provided Clinton cover and unloaded effectively on Bush, who during one of them made the fatal but revealing mistake of looking at his watch as an everyday American black woman posed a poignant question that working white America was also wondering about the national debt. Bush actually responded with more than a hint of grinning disgust as he sarcastically suggested that maybe she should be in the White House and read the mail that he got from citizens that were worried about it. After Bush’s snarky answer its quite likely that millions of working and middle class Americans of every racial and ethnic stripe thought the black woman asking the question might be a better selection to occupy the Oval Office as well, particularly when it came to reading their letters and understanding the challenges they confronted and what endless debt ultimately meant for their future.
An indignant Bush also slipped up and gave the nation a glimpse of the Republicans’ policy of ‘engaging China’—rather than isolating it diplomatically and economically—following the wanton slaughter that Beijing unleashed on peaceful demonstrators in Tiananmen Square in the summer of 1989 that had dared to display models of the Statue of Liberty during their collective cry for freedom. Bush was quite ill-advisedly to the point: “But you isolate China, and turn them inward, and then we’ve made a tremendous mistake and I am not going to do it and I have had to fight a lot of people that were saying ‘human rights’…We are the ones who put sanctions on and stood for it. And [Clinton] can insult General Scowcroft if he wants to, they didn’t go over to coddle, he went over to say they must make the changes they are making now.”
Perhaps not surprisingly, while Clinton took what was then seen as a more hawkish stance toward China and its brutal totalitarian regime, Bush’s business-first agenda was a policy that both parties have come follow with near religious fervor since. Clinton wasn’t in the White House for even two years before he reversed his campaign pledge to deny China a return to the coveted Most Favored Nation trading status (first granted to China in 1980 and reviewed for renewal annually) that had been suspended following the massacre of pro-democracy demonstrators and a massive wave of arrests and executions.
But in the fall of 1992, Clinton could at least play tough on China and appear sincere, for who could know any better? Bush was ultimately relegated to the role of an irritated and not particularly interested incumbent and Perot, following his own head-spinning stumbles, ended up cast as the spoiler who netted nearly 20 million votes and yet didn’t win a single state in the process. After conceding on election night, Perot was nonetheless all smiles as he took his wife for a spin around the dance floor to the tune of Patsy Cline’s ‘Crazy’ while Clinton emerged jubilant as Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Don’t Stop (Thinking About Tomorrow)’ blared away onstage as both a celebration and a battle plan—one the GOP didn’t seem to either grasp or chose not to care to.
If 1992 was the epic and exhilarating election when Clinton rescued the Democrats as they dangled from the edge of political oblivion, the 1996 race would be something of a pro forma affair with the GOP looking oddly like the Democrats had in 1984, uncertain what to do save nominate Sen. Bob Dole as the next old establishment player in line to serve as the sacrificial goat on the altar of Clinton’s reelection. It was a strange campaign, coming across at times like a weak Hollywood reboot of 1992, complete with a returning cast of players. Buchanan once more dashed through the primaries, coming within an eyelash of victory in the opening Iowa caucuses. He then scored an early victory in New Hampshire and again sent waves of panic and rage through the Republican establishment and prompted Dole to grimly declare the primaries would be a clash pitting “the mainstream against the extreme”—a straw man storyline the GOP elites have never really retired since. But the early primary field among the Republicans in 1996 was more crowded than four years earlier and Buchanan found himself running against not just the Midwesterner Dole but also scion Malcolm Stevenson Forbes Jr.—an epitome of East Coast Old Money—as well as former Gov. Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, Sen. Richard Lugar of Indiana and a garden variety of other regional vanity candidates that sprouted across the ballot. Despite his early win in The Granite State and clocking more than 30% of the votes across other key states—including beating Alexander in the former governor’s home state of Tennessee—Buchanan was again an inspired insurgent facing an establishment horse whose victory was never really in doubt after March of that year. When the GOP landed at the San Diego Convention Center in August 1996, the blood between Buchanan and the Republican establishment had putrefied to the point of no return, with the happy renegade refusing to endorse Dole and the cigar lounge leaders of the party—along with California Governor Pete Wilson—banishing him from the convention hall.
Buchanan didn’t miss much of a party in 1996, and he knew it.
Meanwhile, amid the balloon drop in San Diego, Dole also realized he didn’t have much of a victory lap to savor that hot August. Sensing that he was likely to be seen as something more of a reanimated political cadaver than a viable candidate on the campaign trail against a virile Clinton that fall, Dole tapped native Californian turned former New York Congressman Jack Kemp as his running mate, who at 61-years-old at the time appeared like a spring chicken alongside a 73-year-old wounded Dole. Cast from a GI Joe mold, but unlike Dole’s very real and courageous battlefield bona fides that he earned during the closing weeks of World War II in Italy, Kemp had understudied in America’s professional football leagues as a quarterback for both the San Diego Chargers and the Buffalo Bills before making his way into Congress in 1971 where he embraced and evangelically espoused a religious faith in the radical theology of so-called free market economics; a belief system that subverts the nation-state and its people to economic considerations alone and declares its Holy Trinity as: Open Markets, Open Borders and Open Loopholes in the Tax Codes for the seven-digit annual income and higher crowd. While the rationale for Dole to run the play with Kemp was obvious, what was evidently missed in the decision to put the former pro quarterback on the field is the fact that the joyful fanaticism with which he proselytized for the privatization of everything from the U.S. Post Office to AmTrak to Social Security and the Gospel of the Global Marketplace that he preached along with the power of private enterprise as the miracle water that could cure the entrenched and multigenerational poverty that gripped America’s Great Cities had never really, well, actually worked. Relentless academic war games and prototypes of his beloved ‘Enterprise Zones’ to establish proof of concept aside, Kemp was something of a Republican Jerry Brown—a cheerfully earnest enough fella that was a fount of ideas that never produced anything that could be described as a breakthrough success.
On the other hand, the Dole/Kemp ticket was an academic enterprise itself, a doomed march to election day that saw the Republicans even acknowledge the futility of their national duo by running ad buys in key markets asking voters to split their tickets and vote GOP down ballot so as to ‘not write Clinton and the Democrats a blank check in November.’
While the election of 1996 might not have seemed neither much of a surprise or even such a disaster for the Republicans at face value—even if its outcome was not much in question despite the 1994 mid-term trouncing the Democrats had taken—looking a little closer at the map revealed the continued amazing return from the brink for the Democrats and hinted at a remaking of the American body politic that, left unchecked, would ultimately portend the politically fatal event the Republicans have marched steadily toward ever since. Though Clinton only added a net gain of nine electoral votes to his roster in 1996, up to 379 from 370, he turned his 5 million ballot margin in the popular vote tally in 1992 to a 7.7 million vote spread in 1996—with Perot again in the race. Perot’s nearly 20 million votes in 1992 had withered to a still respectable 8 million ballots in 1996. The outcome offers some evidence that Perot’s 1992 campaign did not cost Bush his reelection after all but rather limited the extent of Clinton’s first national triumph. While Clinton lost Georgia, Colorado and Montana in 1996—all states he carried in 1992—he flipped Florida and Arizona into his column which more than made up for them. And underneath an electoral map that looked relatively static there were some profoundly disturbing takeaways for the GOP to consider, chief among them was the cold fact that Clinton could have lost Georgia, Colorado and Montana and not picked up Florida or Arizona and then even lost Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Kentucky and still gone to bed on election night with 270 electoral votes in his pocket.
Such was the electoral depth of the Democrats national resurgence in a nation where just two decades earlier the GOP had managed to paint virtually the entire country crimson red.
The great Republican floodwaters of the 1980s that had appeared so Biblical in their sheer scale were now receding and as the party’s leadership continued to morph into a Wall Street driven global market annex it seemed precious little attention was being paid to how much vast electoral territory the Republicans had so quickly squandered. The first atomic blast of Richard Nixon’s 1972 re-election that had been built entirely on his successful appeal to white working and middle class voters might have been a fond but somewhat distant memory, but the successive Reagan tidal waves of 1980 and 1984 had to have been so fresh that even the hangover of Bush’s less enthusiastic win in 1988 couldn’t have masked how much they had so recently won and how much had slipped through their grasp once more.
And as it turned out vital states had become lost to the GOP forever: California, New York, Illinois and New Jersey.
Reagan won all four in 1980 and again in 1984, and he did so in a walk. Bush Sr. carried California, Illinois and New Jersey in 1988 without too much trouble, but New York fell from the GOP’s grasp. But since 1992 all four of those critical voter rich states and their combined 118 electoral votes—approaching nearly half of the 270 electoral votes needed to win the White House—have gone for the Democrats and its difficult to imagine a realistic political circumstance in this era that would put them in play for the Republicans once again.
Those states are gone for the Republicans and unless the Democrats nominate Congresswoman Ilhan Omar as their standard-bearer in 2020 or 2024, they are not coming back. And by 2028, Omar could well be able to carry not only those states but numerous others as well, but that’s making the assumption the United States as even now constructed and sputtering on is still in actual existence as a functional First World nation-state by the end of the next decade. On the other hand, if the Democrats were to run the already three letter acronym-worthy Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in 2020, good money could be placed on her picking up California and New York, and possibly run the board in Illinois and New Jersey as well. And that cold fact speaks volumes of not only how psychotically unspooled the Democrats have become but it paints in high relief the grim fate now fast approaching the GOP. In several respects, Ocasio-Cortez is the progressive left’s current political It Girl that by today’s metric for a growing strain of the voting public checks more than a few critical boxes: she can dance a rooftop like nobody’s business, brazen hypocrisy and faux outrage are second nature to her, she possesses a command of method acting that is Tony Award caliber, she’s fluent in Progressive psycho-babble, English and Spanish and, oh yeah, she’s hot. Librarian hot. (Cue the outrage…)
The dawn of the Millennium saw the Republicans recover the Chief Executive’s office that November by the whisper of a margin of victory in which the GOP carried just enough states to prevail over Vice President Al Gore and his running mate Connecticut Senator Joe Lieberman, snatching an electoral college victory made possible not by Ralph Nader running on the Green Party ticket in Florida or by Pat Buchanan’s purportedly confusing placement on the Sunshine State’s ballot, but rather clearly by Gore’s inept campaign that saw him lose his own home state of Tennessee. And that’s to say nothing of the Gore/Lieberman campaign’s inability to win a single state in the former Confederacy—unlike LBJ, Carter and Clinton before them. For all the hysterics about Florida in the 2000 election, had Gore/Lieberman been able to pluck just a single state south of the Mason-Dixon Line the election—and history—would have been changed.
Victory granted by your opponent’s incompetence is worthy of a sigh of relief, but it’s certainly nothing to cheer about or gloat over. Yet the suits running the GOP hardly seemed to notice that Bush ultimately prevailed via litigation. He was handed the keys to the White House effectively by court order. Had they studied the map with an eye to long-term strategic prospects as filtered through continued mass immigration rates and declining assimilation standards, the Republicans would have seen they had in fact very little to comfort them as the new century fell over the land. They had won the election but actually lost the popular vote by a margin of several hundred thousand ballots. And that was not even the bleakest indicator by a stretch, far from it. While the high altitude view of the national map in 2000 looked comfortably red and the GOP carried once again the bedrock of The South, the five electoral vote margin by which Bush/Cheney managed to win in spite of the popular vote was a grim forecast indeed.
Whether one supported or opposed Bush, the first year of his presidency was not something one would wish upon a political opponent let alone the nation he led. Bush was in office hardly two months before an American Navy spy plane collided with a Chinese fighter plane over the South China Sea, killing the Chinese fighter pilot and forcing the badly damaged American spy plane to land on China’s Hainan Island. And thus began a tense standoff not really seen since the days when Moscow and Washington would tango on the global dance floor as the world nervously looked on while a diplomatic solution was brokered. While not carrying the world to the brink of the nuclear abyss, the situation tested the mettle and instincts of the new president right out of the gate and shortly before true catastrophe struck.
A little over four months later came September 11thand the world shuddered as the World Trade Center’s iconic twin towers collapsed and the reverberations of its carnage that day was destined to change the world along with America’s place in it.
Or perhaps it cemented America’s place in it.
In the rubble of south Manhattan came what would be widely seen as George W. Bush’s finest moment. Clad in little more than a windbreaker and wielding nothing more than a bullhorn, the new president stood amid the wreckage with his arm draped around New York City Firefighter Bob Beckwith and declared: “I can hear you. The rest of the world hears you and the people…the people who knocked these buildings down will hear all of us soon.” And the crowd of first-responders roared, as perhaps well they should have. Yet hindsight must bear witness: just what were they roaring for? Vengeance of course—and understandably—but harnessed and aimed where and to what ultimate end? If there was ever a moment since World War II that called for an American President and Congress to fulfill their constitutional duties and formally declare a state of war, the September 11th attacks were surely it. It was true that America faced a mercurial enemy it had not yet encountered on such a scale before: a transnational guerilla force that was able to infiltrate the nation and inflict more casualties and chaos on the American homeland than Nazi Germany, Imperial Japan, Fascist Italy and any single nation-state enemy or adversary since WWII had been able to combined. And yet Afghanistan was clearly the home base of al Qaeda, a Taliban-sanctioned operational headquarters for the global jihadist network.
So it’s hard to imagine that roar of cheers from the emergency personnel gathered around Bush and literally standing among the still scattered and smoldering remains of their fellow Americans, was not in part emerging from a full-throated belief that America was heading into an old school righteous war of the variety that had the destruction of the enemy’s ability to carryout further attacks as its primary objective and with more mass devastation administered to Afghanistan as a punitive measure that would be duly noted around the world as an unmistakable message: ‘This is what happens when you let al Qaeda open up shop in your country.’
But when Bush stood before Congress on September 20, 2001, it was not to seek a declaration of war to avenge a gravely wounded nation, to launch a massive campaign to punish its attackers and to protect American citizens and ensure American sovereignty. He did not rise in the well of the Capitol to speak of such things. Rather, Bush spoke of a global imperative brought to life as a result of the attacks against America. He thanked Congress for singing God Bless America on the steps of the Capitol and thanked the Congressional leadership for their “friendship.” He spoke of the world’s sympathetic reaction to the carnage on America’s shores—from Europe to Asia to Latin America—and of the loss of life in Lower Manhattan that extended well beyond that of Americans alone. He spoke of the importance of understanding Islam and implored Americans to not confuse the mass terror attacks as a product of true Islam or a reflection of American Muslims.
And he did speak briefly of war. Bush declared that the “enemies of freedom committed an act of war against our country.” Yet he remarkably sought no declaration of one in return. Instead, he issued what sounded like a court order.
“Tonight, the United States of America makes the following demands on the Taliban,” Bush declared, after noting there was indeed little discernable difference between the government of Afghanistan and the terror organization it housed. “Deliver to United States authorities all the leaders of al Qaeda who hide in your land. Release all foreign nationals, including American citizens, you have unjustly imprisoned. Protect foreign journalists, diplomats, and aid workers in your country. Close immediately and permanently every terrorist training camp in Afghanistan, and hand over every terrorist, and every person in their support structure, to appropriate authorities. Give the United States full access to terrorist training camps, so we can make sure they are no longer operating. These demands are not open to negotiation or discussion. The Taliban must act, and act immediately. They will hand over the terrorists, or they will share in their fate.”
And then after making such a ‘you better or else’ demand even as the Taliban and al Qaeda were hurriedly evacuating their leadership structures through Tora Bora and into the decidedly safer environs of Pakistan and then regions around the globe, Bush informed the American people that while a true war was not about to start, an era of what would prove to be endless combat around the world with no end in sight was about to begin, even if he did finesse the perpetual nature of it a tad.
“Now this war will not be like the war against Iraq a decade ago, with a decisive liberation of territory and a swift conclusion,” Bush said. “It will not look like the air war above Kosovo two years ago, where no ground troops were used and not a single American was lost in combat. Our response involves far more than instant retaliation and isolated strikes. Americans should not expect one battle, but a lengthy campaign, unlike any other we have ever seen. It may include dramatic strikes, visible on TV, and covert operations, secret even in success. We will starve terrorists of funding, turn them one against another, drive them from place to place, until there is no refuge or no rest. And we will pursue nations that provide aid or safe haven to terrorism. Every nation, in every region, now has a decision to make. Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists. From this day forward, any nation that continues to harbor or support terrorism will be regarded by the United States as a hostile regime.”
And Bush posed a rhetorical question to his fellow Americans: “Americans are asking ‘what is expected of us?’” His answer to his own question proved quite telling. In summation, he told them to hug their children, go back to work and keep spending money. He told Americans to be resolute and calm, to have faith in American principles, and then told them to remain confident in prosperity and the economy—a word he used three times in his national address before Congress that night.
Bush didn’t use the word sovereignty even once.
Eighteen months later, with American combat troops deeply embroiled in a so-called ‘nation building’ exercise that had swallowed them ever deeper into Afghanistan, Bush ordered the invasion of Iraq and thus plunged the nation’s soldiers and its people’s bullion into a bloody quagmire from which it has yet to emerge from and now perhaps never will. When the invasion of Iraq began, more than 13,000 U.S. troops were in combat in Afghanistan. By 2009, American troops in Afghanistan topped 100,000 soldiers—not exactly a sign of success.
A decade ago there was no end in sight in either Afghanistan or Iraq and a decade later there still isn’t. Whether one believes this was a terrible miscalculation by the Bush Administration that was compounded by its total incompetence or rather just sheer calculation of imperial realpolitik, Bush’s decision to not seek a declaration of war and wage one but to instead launch a police action-meets-social experiment while seeking franchise rights in two ancient death traps would have profound effects on the eventual fate of the political fortunes and lifespan of the Republican Party while exacerbating the already deteriorating prospects for the United States as a nation and the West as a coherent culture writ large.
With America locked in dual major military conflicts overseas, the outcome of the election of 2004 certainly appeared at the outset as anyone’s guess, with the national sensibility of sticking with the Commander in Chief during a time of even pseudo-war competing with what was by then an equally undeniable pervasive sense among the American public that Bush & Co. had reached a level of malfeasance so grim it had become darkly comedic, complete with a Made For Hollywood scene of Bush arriving on the flight deck of super carrier USS Abraham Lincoln in a Navy S-3B Viking to declare ‘Mission Accomplished’ on May 1, 2003. May Day.
Or as Americans were looking at it by the campaign of 2004: Mayday.
And so the Democratic Party’s leadership saw an opportunity to avenge what they felt was at least a semi-stolen election four years earlier and once more melded a New England-meets-Dixie ticket that must have seemed more out of central casting than Dukakis/Benson or Gore/Lieberman combined. Senator John Forbes Kerry, the stoic-looking statesman who had seen combat in Vietnam was paired with slick Southern trial lawyer John Edwards, a man that possessed none of the authentic charm and little of the intellectual depth and dexterity of Bill Clinton and yet all of his sexual proclivities and ethical deformities.
The election of 2004 was clearly going to be a referendum on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the GOP was clearly nervous that the Texas Air National Guard pilot topping their ticket was facing an actual combat veteran who had returned from Vietnam scarred by not only the horrific nature of war but also deeply troubled by the policies of multiple administrations in Washington that led America into such a nightmare and had kept it there. And Dick Cheney’s record-breaking five draft deferments that he arranged to avoid the war in Vietnam naturally didn’t help ease the Republicans fears.
Unable to compete with Kerry’s combat service record, Karl Rove, the Republican’s chief political strategist who himself used multiple deferments throughout the height of the Vietnam War to avoid serving in it even as he supported its continued prosecution, decided the GOP should instead sully Kerry’s military record and accuse him of turning on the very troops he had fought alongside. And thus was launched a smear campaign that would be effective enough in 2004 to become a verb in political parlance ever since: ‘swiftboating.’
Yet such dirty political trolling was not what carried the day for the GOP in 2004, though it surely helped contaminate enough of the atmosphere surrounding Kerry that it effectively blunted Kerry’s chief appeal to voters that he could extricate America from another foreign adventure-turned-disaster, but rather Bush was returned to office by holding almost his entire map of 2000—save New Hampshire—and adding New Mexico and Iowa to it. When the dust settled as the sun rose on November 3rd Bush had collected 286 electoral votes, hardly a resounding margin of victory by any historical measure. But Bush had the oh-so-sweet pleasure of racking up a 3 million popular vote margin that stunned Democrats, who believed they had the election safely in hand.
Following Bush’s second round of inaugural balls, the real festivities started for the corporate elites that by then had assumed virtually total control of the Republican Party’s national apparatus, kicking off a nearly four-year blowout marked by wild spending sprees, Wall Street’s meth-like subprime mortgage addiction and the delusions of wealth it fostered and wide open borders that saw millions of immigrants successfully crossing illegally into the United States with ease, dislocating millions of working class Americans from their jobs, disrupting the affordable housing stocks available to them and seriously compromising—and in some regions just outright destroying—the public education system their kids relied upon and trampling under foot other key signatures of the American social compact, such as a healthcare system accessible to virtually every American and some semblance of a safety net for the less fortunate that ideally helps people recover economically and emotionally from hardship.
While the disaster of mass immigration had been building for more than two decades before he took office, for eight long years after George W. Bush placed his hand upon Bible and swore to defend the nation the Republican Party flooded the zone with cheap labor for its corporate owners that would quite literally be subsidized by the American taxpayers they were replacing all while the GOP went about proselytizing their religion of consumption without end.
This orgy of dysfunctional consumption raged on even while American soldiers sank ever-deeper into the gore-filled quagmires of Iraq and Afghanistan, their open-ended engagement with misery an afterthought to America’s political masters and apparently forgotten by the American people who increasingly contented themselves by ‘Remembering The Troops’ for three minutes at a time amid vast sporting spectacles staged in corporate stadiums and arenas where they lined up like a well tended herd for the privilege to buy $12 hot dogs and $15 beers and a chance to gaze up at the luxury boxes they dreamed of one day occupying all while obscenely compensated ‘athletes’ danced their little shuffles and jigs in the end zones and raced across the courts and fields mouths agape and faces fixed in mock rage-meets-ecstasy as if their touchdown, goal or dunk had liberated humankind from some pox or plague.
And thus the band played on all the way through the mortgage crisis, when the house lights were turned back up at least momentarily during the Great Recession just for a quick glimpse of the wreckage scattered across the American homeland, before dimming again for the opening of this third and final act. The successive elections of freshman Senator Barack Obama and the old salt tapped to be his reassuring running mate, Senator Joe Biden, in both 2008 and 2012 demonstrated the truly precarious state the GOP had stumbled into and how—no matter how dire conditions become—the perfect storm of continued mass migration, the total occupation of the academy and the perverse corruption of what now might be best described as the media-entertainment complex will most assuredly advance the Democratic Party to a political pantheon of one party national rule within the next three national election cycles—and quite possibly sooner.
By the dawn of 2008, the Republicans quandary was coming into focus. While the markets hadn’t yet collapsed under the weight of the vast mortgage schemes that like the dark art of some lost Medieval alchemy was able cook home values into real gold for a few and fools gold for the rest, the floodgates were creaking and the bulkheads had begun to ominously groan as the national debt approached $11 trillion and America’s imperial wars dragged on.
After eight years of Republican rule in the White House and violently storming seas ahead, it might have seemed that whatever remained of the party’s top tier contenders would have taken a momentary powder and intentionally let the Democrats captain the ship into the maelstrom and then blame them for it.
But power always beckons those who seek it.
Thus as the curtain opened on the 2008 campaign, a field of relatively A-List candidates emerged from within the Republican Party’s establishment to succeed Bush; not the least of which was Rudy Giuliani, the former federal prosecutor who managed to become a Republican mayor of New York City and win reelection despite the Democrats overwhelming advantage among Gotham’s registered voters. Along with Giuliani was former Sen. Fred Thompson from Tennessee who had first been introduced to the television-viewing public in 1974 when he served as counsel to the Senate Watergate Committee but by 2008 had become much better known for his role as Manhattan District Attorney Arthur Branch on NBC’s Law & Order. Thompson’s well-established political bona fides, his Southern charm and his career as an accomplished actor on both a television hit series like the Law & Order franchise and big screen blockbusters like The Hunt For Red October made him a formidable contender.
Joining Giuliani and Thompson among the GOP’s starting bench in 2008 was Mitt Romney, the coiffed private equity player that had proudly funded Staples Inc.’s drive to wipeout the smaller, service friendly office supply stores on Main Street, USA, and replace them with effectively self-service warehouses stocked deep with cheap foreign sourced products that were frequently defective in the box or quickly broken during assembly. Romney was fresh from a surprise term as Governor of Massachusetts—the hunger for power is more prevalent in Romney’s genes than Beto O’Rourke’s, his father George Romney was the governor of Michigan that ran unsuccessfully for president while his mother ran unsuccessfully for a Senate seat in Michigan—and his time in the Massachusetts statehouse solidified his image as a deft and dapperly dressed carpetbagger, considering Romney didn’t actually live in Massachusetts when he decided that he needed to run the state.
Three other undercard players seemed to have at least a potentially plausible long-shot that year; Senator Sam Brownback of Kansas, Governor Tommy Thompson of Wisconsin and Governor Mike Huckabee of Arkansas, with the oddity and amusement factor being offered by the likes of Alan Keyes (of which Tim Meadows did a terrific send-up of on SNL), Rand Paul, Duncan Hunter and Tom Tancredo.
And then of course there was the Senator from Arizona, John McCain, who still seemed to carry an angry grudge from his defeat in the 2000 GOP primary at the hands of Bush. Eight years after that stinging loss which was crafted in no small measure by another carefully orchestrated smear designed by Karl Rove and unleashed in the critical South Carolina primary, McCain was in his 70s and looked at the outset like political road kill on a retreaded tire. But McCain was undoubtedly the globalists’ globalist, proudly standing shoulder to shoulder with Sen. Ted Kennedy to sponsor the disastrous Kennedy-McCain mass immigration amnesty bill just a couple of years earlier. Dubiously entitled the ‘Secure America and Orderly Immigration Act,’ McCain teamed with Teddy early in Bush’s second term to introduce what would have been the largest mass amnesty ever recorded in the history of nation-states, ultimately giving citizenship to as many as 30-plus million immigrants illegally in the country and kicking off the final phase of swamping and then sinking America as a recognizably Western nation.
Perhaps believing at the time that his shot at the presidency had come and gone in 2000, McCain had gone all in with Kennedy and the so-called ‘Gang of Eight’ plan in 2005 to not just ensure the borders remained wide open, but rather forever eliminate them in any meaningful sense whatsoever. In the process, McCain had taken to taunting working Americans with the old libel that they won’t and don’t work the jobs that immigrants work, an overtly antagonistic stance that might not have seemed terribly prudent for someone who then decided to hit the campaign trail once more for a second swipe at the Oval Office.
But as previously noted: power always beckons those who seek it.
While McCain’s boosters have long portrayed his support for mass immigration as a virtue of his character, a sign of his placing principle above what’s popular among the citizenry, in actual fact McCain’s position on mass immigration was merely in keeping with what had by then become orthodox doctrine among the Republican Party’s leadership. Sustained mass immigration was foundational to the profit centers of the corporate and business interests that the GOP by then existed exclusively to serve. Therefore whatever action—or inaction—that elevated and ensured the primacy of continued mass immigration into the United States was always paramount and securing the border from illegal crossings was merely one element amid a significant range of responsibilities that the Republican Party either abandoned or sabotaged in order to achieve their goals of eliminating American labor and ushering in a replacement population, from workplace enforcement of laws to ensure a legal labor force to laws that ensured housing and healthcare were prioritized to the benefit of American citizens. The fate of the nation and its white working and middle class people were completely inconsequential in the end game but it mattered in the meantime only to the extent that they could still be harnessed like an electoral mule and used until the date arrived when they were simply no longer necessary and could be put to pasture, or otherwise disposed.
To that end, as McCain entered a surprisingly populated primary season he reverted back to performing his little Vaudeville routine of pretending to offer the bedrock of the GOP voter base “some straight talk” that was salted by his writers with the required folksy asides, the faux humility and the transparently false assurances that he was just like them—even as he was actually dismissively lecturing them yet again on how their ‘concerns’ about what was happening to the country were neither legitimate nor rational. Only ‘the crazies’ were worried that America was dangerously overextended abroad and literally overwhelmed at home.
But it’s hard to say whether McCain was actually running at least initially in 2008 with the thought that he might actually win the very nomination he had been denied eight years earlier, or rather whether he merely hoped to increase his national profile (which is why even sure losers run for president) and further elevate his stature among the GOP’s elite and perhaps gather enough delegates along the way to become a kingmaker at the convention if no one rolled into St. Paul, Minnesota, with enough steam to seal the nomination on the first ballot.
Across the aisle, the Democrats were also seeing number of old warhorses file into the starting gate, including five sitting senators and one sitting governor that were all very plausible presidents. Among them were Sen. Joe Biden of Delaware, Sen. Chris Dodd of Connecticut, Sen. John Edwards of South Carolina, Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois and Gov. Bill Richardson on New Mexico. And joining that Boys Club was the Madame herself, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, who like Romney had moved to another state, New York, to run safely for a senate seat in order to position herself for a run for the White House. Clinton brought one of the few true distinctions to the table on either of the parties’ racing form: biological sex and gender—a very real distinction that was transcended by the pure lust for power that bound them all.
As surprising as the Democratic primary race turned out to be, with Hillary Clinton outmaneuvered and then overturned by the implausible rise and triumph of Barack Obama’s lean and nimble campaign that delivered a historic stunner of an upset that would be overshadowed only by her encore of destruction at the polls delivered at the hands of Donald Trump eight years later, McCain’s ability to stumble into the nomination was a head-turner as well. Despite months of building anticipation throughout 2007, Fred Thompson seemed to lose interest in his own campaign almost immediately after he formerly announced his candidacy during an appearance on The Tonight Show in September. By January 2008, following performances throughout the frontloaded primaries that ranged from lackluster to piss poor, Thompson pulled the plug. Fellow heavyweight turned dud Rudy Giuliani also expired on the launch pad, with the self-declared ‘America’s Mayor’ reduced to a meandering campaign that saw him performing a cheap stump shtick in which he pretended to take a cell phone call from his wife during campaign stops, a gimmick that proved about as effective as he was as a candidate. Apparently believing that he wouldn’t have much of a shot in either Iowa or New Hampshire, Giuliani decided to bet everything on Florida’s winner-take all primary that had been bumped into January that year. He tanked, trailing McCain and Romney by hundreds of thousands of ballots and was nearly beaten by Huckabee. Like Thompson a week earlier, Giuliani euthanized his campaign before February 2008 had even dawned.
There were some interesting moments to follow, with the Iowa caucuses again proving it’s a strange process long-succored in that heartland state (as well as still practiced in some others) that few other Americans really understand and a place where Huckabee pulled out a win and the media pretended, along with seven more states after his surprise Iowa victory, that a governor from Arkansas who was not named Bill Clinton was somehow going to be president.
But what was more telling was that Romney, Huckabee and Rep. Ron Paul from Texas between them won as many votes throughout the primary as McCain, meaning McCain was crowned the nominee after winning less than 47% of primary voters. For those listening to McCain carefully, the ghosts of the Mondale and Dole campaigns could heard rustling.
Obama facing McCain in the general election was a rout in the making, and it wasn’t one of simply a vibrant and young black senator from Illinois overtaking an old and wounded white man in the imagination of voters, though that surely played a significant role in the ultimate outcome. Running as a war hero might have had a nice ring to it during the focus groups, but the fact was McCain ran as a war hero eight years earlier—when he still had at least some residual vim and vigor—and he lost to a decidedly non-war hero (well, all about war, just no hero), so it’s unclear why the corporate brain trust running McCain 2008 really thought that was going to work nearly a decade later. Of course they tried to dress the war hero in the cloak of an elder statesman who would be just the captain for the rough seas into which the ship of state was clearly sailing. It was from that desperate script McCain was reading when he ‘suspended’ his campaign and flew back to Washington to consult with President Bush along with Obama to discuss the nuclear meltdown of the financial markets, but Obama along with the rest of the nation recognized pathetic political stagecraft as performed by McCain and the campaign wound down whether McCain was looking to pause it or not.
And with good reason.
If the country held an election in 1944 as World War II raged across the globe and American soldiers were being killed by the thousands every week, with the electorate ill-advisedly returning a clearly ailing FDR to the White House for his fourth consecutive term, as grim as the financial crisis proved to be in the fall of 2008 the election was not going to wait nor should it. McCain’s late hour stunt merely demonstrated how doomed he clearly understood his campaign to actually be.
The only glimmer of hope that ever flashed across the radar screen tracking McCain’s flaccid general election campaign came in the beautiful form of Sarah Palin, that American Girl (cue Tom Petty) and governor of Alaska who appeared at the convention that summer to jolt the GOP faithful like a double dose of Viagra, stirring to life however briefly an otherwise impotent campaign. Palin’s genuine appeal was recognized immediately by the national press corps which properly identified it as the only viable threat McCain’s otherwise limp presence posed to the newly christened Democratic standard-bearer Barack Obama. The establishment media responded accordingly, launching a frenetic and visceral multi-front attack on Palin and her family (which Washington Post writer Dana Milbank eventually took to a stalker-grade pathology) while simultaneously pretending to maintain an honest respect for McCain, a tenuous charade that they were prepared to play as long as Obama seemed poised to win. While McCain may have hoped to bottle Palin’s lightning at the convention, it wasn’t long before she had stolen the campaign’s thunder along with the hearts of many more people than the Senator and his staff could ever abide and McCain’s rage and fury quickly mounted as he watched Palin draw thousands of energized and cheering supporters out on the stump while he more often than not drew merely hundreds of people during his solo appearances that were noted for the scattered and awkward applause that would later become a hallmark of the Jeb Bush 2016 campaign.
And so America was treated to the surreal spectacle of the GOP’s machine turning on its own vice presidential candidate in 2008 during the election for the offense of being far more genuinely popular than its ailing and stumbling presidential candidate and in doing so self-immolating literally the only real thing their campaign had going for it. Sarah had ‘gone rogue,’ the Republican suits fumed, disgusted at her brazen nationalist appeals against ‘crony capitalism’ and her commitment to secure America’s borders. And in a sense she certainly had gone rogue, and in doing so foreshadowed a campaign yet to come, but Palin’s bucking a traditional role of tuchus-smoocher for McCain’s ambulance ride into November is what made her, well, Sarah. But while the pure pettiness of McCain’s intermural political envy was suddenly on vivid display, Palin’s sheer appeal—and who found her appealing—once more demonstrated the Republican Party’s reliance on the white working and working middle class as the only voting bloc that could deliver them November.
Despite her plain-spoken intellectual depth which so rabidly infuriated her establishment critics, as most memorably evidenced by ABC’s Charles deWolf Gibson and CBS’s Katherine Anne Couric’s cold sweat of contempt for Palin’s actual working class existence that was caught on camera, to Sarah’s unflinching anchor in and her candid commitment to core American values and her unvarnished holistic beauty that by all accounts triggered screaming fits of jealous rage in McCain’s second corporate ‘wife’ Cindy McCain, the medicinal brew of Americana roots that Palin provided to McCain’s campaign was simply not enough to save the cadaver from its fate with the senator at the helm.
Simply put, the Republican machine unsurprisingly got it backwards, as the only chance the GOP probably really had at all in 2008 would have been with a Palin/McCain ticket emerging from the convention—and that’s assuming McCain had to be on the ticket at all.
By the time the voters left the polling booths the reality of McCain’s electoral erection dysfunction finally struck the GOP hard, so to speak, as Obama ran the board. While McCain managed to hold on to a near identical popular vote that Bush garnered in his 2004 reelection, meaning nearly 60 million votes, Obama trumped that by an almost 10 million popular margin and in the process rolled up 365 electoral votes to McCain’s stagnant 173 electoral votes. Despite Palin’s best efforts on a doomed ticket headed by a doddering candidate and sabotaged by the old man’s corrupt cabal, the national map confronting the Republicans in 2008 reflected the erosion the party had suffered among its base.
Obama’s win echoed the success of Clinton before him as he recaptured Virginia, Florida and North Carolina in the Old South and rolled through Ohio and Indiana in the Rust Belt, Iowa in the Midwest and Colorado, Nevada and New Mexico in the Sunbelt, all states that had fallen to Bush only four years earlier. McCain performed only slightly better than John Kerry had in 2004, but managed to lose those nine states because he could not make an effective case to working white Americans that they should stick with the Republicans—or just turn out for them even if they weren’t going to vote for Obama. He simply didn’t have any credibility throughout much of a voting bloc that he had spent years dismissively denouncing and lecturing and the one element of his campaign that did resonate with such voters, Sarah Palin, was accordingly scuttled.
Thus came to an inglorious end McCain’s lifelong endeavor to wield power from the Oval Office, a warlord vaunted by the Beltway Establishment for his total commitment to global empire completely obliterated at the ballot box by a community organizer from Chicago who had been a Senate backbencher only a couple years earlier.
And while it was ultimately a predictable defeat it was yet nonetheless crushing to McCain and his family, a personal humiliation that only filled the McCain clan with an even greater reservoir of bitter hatred for the American nation-state and the white working class that had forged so much of it. Glowing with that radioactive animus, McCain himself slunk back to his Senate seat where he would dedicate the rest of his life to ensuring America would not long survive him.
Despite the GOP’s hemorrhaging voters and states in 2008, the first midterms that followed Obama’s election delivered a stunning rebuke to the Democrats at the hands of a white working and middle class electorate that began to better understand the party of FDR, JFK and LBJ was not really how they remembered it, that it had changed considerably since even Clinton had saved it, and they unleashed a grassroots rejoinder that resulted in the largest Congressional realignment in more than 60 years. It was a comeuppance that momentarily terrified the Democratic Party’s power players and its media assets, who descended into a frenzied meltdown that would serve as a teaser of attacks against white voters yet to come, but the ballot blowback of 2010 was ultimately harnessed by Establishment Republicans who spent it to further their own corporate agenda—a profiteers to-do list that had nothing of merit to offer all those angry voters who were tired of watching their quality of life, indeed their way of life, continue to erode by the week if not the day.
By the time the card was being drawn up for the 2012 election, the GOP’s leadership thought they had arrived at a workable plan for victory: run a younger version of McCain. And so Willard Mitt Romney’s moment had finally arrived. After galloping through an uninspired primary season in which he rolled up wins in 37 states but tellingly only claimed 52% of the primary votes, Romney tapped former Jack Kemp acolyte Paul Ryan as his running mate in the misguided belief that white working and middle class voters would be drawn back to the Republican fold if two visually white and supposedly moderate males were on the ticket—no matter what they really represented. Romney had managed to sew up the primaries amid an uninspired collection of opponents that was most notable for who was not among them: Sarah Palin. While the former governor of Alaska admirably decided that slogging through another national campaign was not worth it for her family—her youngest son Trig, who was born during the 2008 primary season, was just four years old—professional political glutton and former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich just couldn’t resist making a last run at the Washington trough he had fed so long at and presented himself to voters as a professorial statesman and leading intellect in the GOP that was ready to return the party to presidential power. Unfortunately for his campaign, as a career congressman from Georgia dating back to the Carter Administration, Gingrich had spent two decades diligently working round-the-clock for the corporate interests that have profited mightily from the Republican Party as they’ve rode it to its death and the disintegration of the nation and Gingrich was a trusted foot soldier for Wall Street to ensure the borders remained wide open while immigration enforcement at worksites in the interior of the country remained unenforced. Gingrich was the legislative point man to protect the vast flow of mass immigration of cheap replacement workers that was pouring into to what business defined merely as ‘labor markets’ while decimating working class jobs in construction, installation, manufacturing, assembly, auto works, hospitality and across numerous other industries that once paid living wages to American citizens. Gingrich’s attempted makeover and his revisionist historical take that he had attempted to staunch illegal immigration didn’t pass the laugh test with voters and the former speaker of the house tanked early and took his talent for error-prone prognosticating to Fox News.
There’s no question that as summer faded into fall in 2012 the GOP could look past the deep corrosion of credibility it had suffered among the American people and reasonably convince itself that it had an even shot at overtaking Obama on election day. The metrics for the incumbent were troubling, to say the least. The Great Recession remained a black hole which consumed the jobs, homes and, in a more figurative respect, the lives of millions of Americans. Many Americans remained in financial anguish while tens of millions more confronted economic uncertainty everyday. The launch of the Affordable Care Act, so-called ‘Obamacare,’ proved fitful at best and demonstrated the president’s assurance that Americans who liked their doctors and their health plans could keep them was a lie. Mass migration into America continued at a brisk clip even as the nation struggled to help its own citizens. Overseas the news wasn’t much better. With American combat troops still mired in Afghanistan, Obama had decided on a ‘surge’ of reinforcements to keep the Taliban on the defensive, but the 30,000 troops that were ultimately deployed were nowhere near enough to defeat the enemy or accomplish really anything other than the maintain the status quo. It would later be revealed that Gen. Stanley McChrystal provided a classified briefing to the then new president in September 2009 informing Obama that a successful campaign against the Taliban would take 500,000 combat troops and a relentless all-out-for-victory approach expected to last about five years. Obama blanched, then took a pass, but in the fine tradition of wanting to seem to be doing something (versus getting the hell out of there), he agreed to put a fractional amount of more boots on the ground in Afghanistan.
If that weren’t problematic enough, while the landmass formerly known as the nation of Iraq continued its dissolution into tribal fiefdoms and terrorist redoubts with a corrupt make-believe central government succored on American dollars and a supported by American troops, Obama decided to run a regime change play that echoed the Bush Administration’s brilliant calculations, first by throwing Hosni Mubarak under the bus in Cairo despite the Egyptian strongman’s three decades of supporting the West and then, with John McCain at his side, ordered the air campaign that would eventually knockout Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi. Despite Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s gleeful boast of “We saw. We came. He died!” the reality was the homicidally eccentric Gaddafi had held the country together much in the same manner Saddam Hussein indisputably had in Iraq. With Gaddafi gone, what was once Libya completely disappeared into a violent churn of competing governments that run little more than neighborhoods in cities with more than 300 militias spread across the former nation-state. Just as Bush effectively erased Iraq as a functioning nation, Obama had managed to make Libya vanish and in doing so offered fresh territories ripe for ISIS and Al Qaeda’s career development centers.
This was the record Romney got to run against, and there’s no question that Obama was nervous about some his weaknesses (he didn’t mention the ‘victory’ in Libya much during that campaign), but an interesting thing happened on the way to Election Day.
Romney didn’t seem to know much of what to do beyond run a lifeless campaign based on what by then had become the Republican Mass: tax cuts, deregulation and privatization. Oh, yeah, and about that whole illegal immigration thing, um, well, people who broke into the country and then broke into jobs often using stolen Social Security numbers can just “self-deport.”
It probably didn’t help that he came out of the gate believing he had no shot whatsoever with nearly half the country. During comments made at a Boca Raton fundraiser that September that was leaked to Mother Jones, Romney declared to wealthy donors: “There are 47% of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47% of the people who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe they are entitled to healthcare, to food, to housing, to you name it—that’s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what,” Romney said. “I mean the president starts out with 48 or 49%…he starts off with a huge number. These people pay no income tax. Forty-seven percent of Americans pay no income tax, so our message of low taxes doesn’t connect. So [Obama] will be out there talking about tax cuts for the rich. I mean that’s what they sell every four years. And so my job is not to worry about those people. I’ll never convince them that they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.”
While he sought to quickly recover the pseudo-gaffe by expressing regret for the comments and it is not clear at all that they did any lasting damage to an otherwise bland campaign, it was actually a profound observation that revealed the GOP’s elite and their corporate owners understand that the electoral tipping point into their oblivion draws near. Equally profound was what Romney left unsaid: just how the Republican Party found itself in a country which by their own description was now no less than half-populated by ‘people’ who in lieu of not paying taxes want a cradled-to-grave system of handouts? Just who are these ‘people’ and where did they come from? While denounced by the usual suspects as a racial dog-whistle the cold arithmetic doesn’t support that as whites in 2012 were by far the dominant voting bloc and there’s no way half of the American voting populace is comprised of anything less than tens of millions of white Americans of every economic strata and cultural caste. In January of this year the Pew Research Center projected that in 2020 the so-called ‘Boomers’ (of which this writer is a member) of the post-war ‘Baby Boom’ generation, which is overwhelmingly Anglo, will still comprise the single largest generational bloc of eligible voters who—or may not—amble over to the polling place on Election Day next fall. And even among Gen Z (appropriately entitled to signal The End) voters who may cast ballots in 2020, the Pew Center notes, more than 55% of these potential voters will be white. And yet in the most generic of assessments it is Gen Z that embodies the most privileged and pampered generation in American history.
So Romney’s caught on candid camera kiss-off to half the electorate was not so much a farewell to, in the parlance of today, ‘voters of color’ (but them, too) as much as it surely was a recognition of the GOPs precarious position among a broader range of white Americans who don’t see Social Security as a giveaway or FHA home loan guarantees as a socialist plot, they may dread the DMV but they are rather fond of their local U.S. Post Office (don’t think so, just try to close one) and don’t believe in privatization as a religious cure for every bureaucratic ill. And they are even less enthused about academic theorems that advance the hypothetical glories of free trade, open labor markets and the mass immigration that fuel vast profits for so few while ‘displacing’ so many.
In any case, while Romney and tag along Paul Ryan may have appeared to be the best shot the GOP had at unseating Obama and his understudy Joe Biden, the Republican’s refusal—and by this time perhaps its politically genetic inability—to run candidates and a campaign that spoke directly to the concerns of the single largest voting demographic in the nation likely doomed the effort from the start.
Like McCain just four years before him: no one was excited about a Romney presidency, least of all the people he needed to be the most.
And so it was that while Obama shed about 4 million votes in November 2012, he still cruised to reelection, picking up a comfortable 332 electoral vote spread and ceding only North Carolina and Indiana from his 2008 roster. The Republicans cerebral hemorrhaging was evident in Karl Rove’s state of denial on Fox News as he insisted Ohio was still in play and the election was still up for grabs even as Obama was perusing the invite list for his Second Inaugural. Obama had beaten Romney by more than 100 electoral votes and by 5 million popular votes. It wasn’t even close.
And like John McCain before him, post-defeat Romney too would make plans to slip into the Senate from a safe state like Utah where, filled with an icy rage for the white working and middle class that rejected him, he’s diligently pursued his plans to wreck terrible vengeance upon them. Like McCain before him, Romney has always believed that he was born to be president, and the denial of his perceived destiny by a motley rabble that shares little more with him than also being white has stirred in Romney—just as it did in McCain—a jihadist-zeal to see America as a sovereign nation state utterly erased into a borderless mass consumer market. That was the endgame intent all along, of course, but in defeat Romney has found an even greater sense of imperative purpose.
In an amazingly comical display of dark humor, the GOP’s establishment as led by Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus drafted a ‘postmortem’ on just what went wrong for the party in November 2012. It was and remains a manuscript of grotesque beauty presented as a map to the future with the word ‘DOOM!’ crossed out and ‘future’ scrawled above it. According to the GOP management team, the only way the Republican Party had a workable future as a national political force following the 2012 debacle was, well, more of the same. The media had a field day cavorting through the GOP’s letter to itself, which Talking Points Memo summarized in six key points, the first of which said everything: Pass Immigration Reform Yesterday. That’s right. The Republicans have lost multiple elections as its base of a working and middle class white voting bloc abandons it—in no small measure due to mass immigration and particularly illegal immigration—and Priority One is to grant another sweeping amnesty to illegal immigrants and expand the legal avenues in which millions of migrants can arrive in the United States in vast numbers irrespective of the impact on American citizens, including the struggling black and Chicano Americans who like their white American brethren desperately need a hand from Uncle Sam.
After losing in 2012, the Republican Party’s leadership, as directed by Wall Street and associated business-first entities, determined that the problem with Romney was he didn’t push open borders and mass amnesty strongly enough. The underlying message of the so-called postmortem was the GOP had to plunge even deeper and faster into the playbook that the California Republican Party had been running its ground game from since well before the Millennium: jettison any cultural connection to white working America and offer snappy econo-sops to black and Latino voters in the fever-dream that they may somehow wheel around into the GOP’s corner.
And this actually passed as a plan for a political party’s future, when it really was the playbill for its funeral.
Well, that free market, open border prescription was once more dutifully swallowed inside the Beltway by the bulk of the GOP’s Congressional cohort and the media establishment that cheers it all the way over the cliff, but the sweep of working white America didn’t need to reject it as they didn’t really bother to pay attention long enough to read it following Romney’s implosion.
Despite the second consecutive loss of the White House, the Republicans could take some significant solace in the 2014 midterm elections, where they saw net gains in the Senate, the House and in Gubernatorial races across the country, albeit gains that had virtually nothing to do with the Priebus-penned postmortem. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s loss in the Virginia primaries to an unknown professor who effectively ran a one-issue campaign—taking a hardline on mass immigration—demonstrated once more how out of touch the GOP’s leadership had become to the will of their constituents. Yet their nine-seat Senate pickups was the spear-point in an advance that heralded yet another moment that should have given the Democrats a chilling pause, as while Obama remained securely in the Oval Office the map nearly everywhere outside the District of Columbia looked somewhere between ugly and downright grim. In short, by 2014 the GOP’s electoral holdings outside of the presidency—judging by any map—appeared overwhelming.
But while maps provide useful charts of topography, they are not the geological survey that studies what’s actually happening underneath the surface. As journalist-turned-historian William Shirer chronicled with meticulous detail in his seminal tome The Rise and Fall of The Third Reich, when 1942 came to a close the scope of Germany’s conquest seemed almost terrifyingly unimaginable when evaluated from a map, encompassing a portfolio of real estate surpassing the height of the Roman Empire and stretching from the English Channel to the Volga River, from the Norwegian Sea to the southern shoreline of the Mediterranean and deep into the Caucasus. And yet as history would reveal in its own epic postmortem: the Germans were already toast by the dawn of 1943. The map said one thing but the fundamentals underneath it spoke to something else altogether and as that fateful year of 1943 got underway, much of the German High Command sensed it. The Germans were sitting on this vast bounty of conquered soil and were meticulously looting its spoils yet with every passing day the creeping feeling that they had reached high tide and shot their last real effective bolt could not be shaken and by the late summer of 1943 it could not be denied, if still not spoken so openly. The Germans slogged on for two more carnage-filled years, but by September 1943 the outcome was never really in doubt.
It’s not too much to say that 2014-16 was quite likely the GOP’s electoral 1942-43, a high tide that preceded its total collapse.
Like the Germans of WWII before them they will attempt to trade some real estate for time, writing off some states and shifting resources to others that they hope to put or keep in play, but soon enough they will no longer be able to deny they are increasingly in short supply of both—and precious little in the way of reliable voters to make it up with—much like the rest of the Western world today. It’s worth noting that in the cold winter of January 1942, even a brooding Adolf Hitler, whom weeks earlier had pounded another nail into his nation’s coffin by declaring war on the United States, pondered America’s future when considering its construct and rhetorically asked his generals: “It’s a decayed country…How can one expect a state like that to hold together—a country where everything is built on the dollar?” The answer turned out to be long enough to wipe Nazi Germany and the Axis powers off the map, but his observation that an all-consuming adherence to a currency versus a culture to define a country can not allow a coherent nation-state to long survive seems more relevant for the United States today than when Hitler stewed on it in the gathering gloom of his own murderous regime’s doom.
The meteoric ascendance of Trump fueled a firestorm of hysterical yet obscenely inaccurate (and intentionally so) comparisons of the duly elected 45th President of the United States to the rise of Hitler and Germany’s subsequent descent into its twelve-year nightmare of Nazi party rule as the horrors of it unfolded across Europe and much of the globe. The analogies tying Trump’s stated policy objectives (as empty as they ultimately proved to be) to Hitler and the Nazis were not a particularly new tactic from the progressive playbook nor was the regurgitation of it across the nightly news cycles, but the vehemence and volume of the smear in this iteration was jolting, as was the ‘legs’ it picked up in anchor seats and the class of punditry that affords various networks and shows prepaid positions on particular issues. Finding someone to muse aloud whether Trump’s election was a prelude to migrant round-ups, media shutdowns and inevitably, concentration camps for illegal immigrants, has not been terribly difficult since about mid-2016 after it became apparent Trump was going to be the Republican nominee and even easier following his election that November.
But for all the outrageous mischaracterizations of Trump and the brazen manipulation of historical facts in an effort to make Trump and the GOP’s base seem at least something akin to a close relative of the Nazis—carriers of a bad gene in their political DNA that should make them suspect at all times—there is of course no meaningful comparison for anyone even tenuously tethered to historical reality. Naturally that caveat places an increasing swath of the emerging generation of Democratic Party activists in play as they not only routinely make the comparison but actually believe there is an ethically honest correlation between the Republican Party and the National Socialists that seized power in Germany and brought genocide into the Industrial Age by committing it with all the bloodlust of antiquity but with a conveyor belt efficiency that heralded the arrival of the 20thCentury.
While there is no sane equivalence between the GOP and the Nazis in their philosophy or practice, nor in their motives or methods, if there is a similarity to be glimpsed anywhere between the Nazis and the GOP it can be found amidst the reactions of both parties’ true believers as the roof is caving in on them.
Richard J. Evans, a professor of Modern History at Cambridge University whose exhaustive account of wartime Germany, The Third Reich At War, was published in 2008 to become a New York Times bestseller and includes an account from a young woman who toiled away in Berlin with at a frenetic pace even as the downfall of the Nazi regime grew ever closer.
“Every one of us worked with hectic energy. Countless projects were started up, knocked out by the effects of the war, abandoned, taken up again, cancelled, altered, rejected once again and so on,” wrote Melita Maschmann. “During the last months of this, the feeling crept over us that all this feverish activity…was hardly producing the slightest response in the country. Our office was like a termites nest, gradually pervaded by the sense of the coming collapse without a single person daring to breathe a syllable about it…Our brains gave birth to plans and still more plans, lest we should have a moment to stop and think and then to have to recognize that all this bustle was already beginning to resemble the convulsions of a dance of death.”
The sort of frenetic, hive-like mentality Maschmann recalled as the young automatons busied themselves in end-stage delusions can be found throughout the GOP today, with its college outreach initiatives that are not just dead on arrival but actually met with frenzied mob violence on campus and its dead-end ethnic minority outreach efforts—which at times still seem to be little more than appearances by the duo ‘Diamond & Silk’ on Fox News and Candace Owens’ Twitter account—and ever more bizarre declarations from the Republican leadership that Americans are a people united in their values and beliefs and priorities when, in fact, the country is dissolving into Babylon on the Balkans all around them.
When the respective primaries got underway for the presidential election of 2016, America was faced at the outset with the very unsavory prospect that dynasty—just another word for entrenched corruption—was going to deal its hand in a rematch of another iteration of Clinton v. Bush, with former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton poised to make the title bout and square off with former Florida Governor Jeb Bush (pronounced ‘Yeb Boosh’ among his detractors) and for a few months in late 2015 it appeared that America was destined to be led for the sixth time by a member of one of two family’s that had held power in the White House for twenty consecutive years since January 1989. If that were the case and either Hillary or Jeb were then reelected, it would mean two families ran the executive branch of the United States for twenty-eight of the past thirty-six years.
And this is the reality from a nation whose elites routinely rail against the Russian oligarchy without the slightest whiff of irony.
But as fate would have it, Bush v.3 proved to be more amazingly feeble than even McCain’s general election run eight years earlier. Despite having amassed a deep $200 million-plus war chest and having built/inherited a national campaign structure populated by career establishment figures with ties stretching back to his dad’s CIA days, Jeb managed to do little more than burp, cry and fart on the stump until his family begged him to abort his campaign in the first trimester, which he did in late February 2016. The patriarch George H. W. Bush is said to have sobbed in his wheelchair at his family’s total humiliation at watching his son Jeb plead to an audience: “please clap.”
As for the hundreds of millions of dollars that were funneled into Bush’s stillbirth of a campaign, it’s doubtful the donors saw a dime of it back, which one must wonder how that went over when all that cold cash bought the players was approximately 286,000 votes for Bush while Ben ‘Who?’ Carson running on shoestring, wax paper and a jar of paste wracked up nearly a million votes. Senators Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio along with Governor John Kasich pulled together more than 14 million ballots between them and carried a considerable number of states, but it was the odd man out from the beginning, Donald J. Trump, who would go on to garner more than 14 million votes alone and had the nomination in hand by May 2016, a precursor political upset that begat the most profound political upset in the history of American presidential elections.
Enough has been written and more still will be as to just how this happened, but it is worth revisiting for a moment in this late hour of what remains of the Republican Party’s life and the in-progress collapse of America and the Western world itself, particularly to provide context to the debacle that would soon follow Trump’s inauguration. Oceans of ink, both real and digital, have been expended since Trump descended on that now legendary elevator on June 16, 2015, to announce his candidacy. And almost all of it focused on what journalists understood, innately it seems, to be his punch line: mass immigration, particularly of the illegal variety, essentially because no one else was talking about it in the terms that he used, save perhaps more than 200 million actual everyday Americans. And he got right down to it, in his manner of speaking, which between his vocabulary, syntax and linear coherency seemed even at that early date to peg him at possessing between a 6th or 7th grade intellect. His announcement was a sure sign that Trump either freestyles his own ‘speeches’ or veers wildly off whatever was actually written for him.
“When Mexico sends its people, they are not sending their best,” Trump declared. “They are not sending you. They are not sending you. They are sending people that have lots of problems, and they are bringing those problems with us. They are bringing drugs. They are bringing crime. They are rapists. And some I assume are good people. But I speak to the border guards and they tell us what we are getting. And it only makes common sense. It only makes common sense. They are sending us not the right people.”
Amid his opening ramble were two sentences that would take on greater importance later: “When was the last time anybody saw us beating, let’s say China in a trade deal? I beat China all the time. All the time.” and “Islamic terrorism is eating up large portions of the Middle East. They’ve become rich. I’m in competition all the time.”
China? “I beat China all the time.”
ISIS? “I’m in competition with them.”
While it was an oddity for many reasons—and thus laughed off by most in news and punditry as a momentary sideshow to the Main Event—the emergence of Trump’s campaign from its Manhattan womb was immediately notable for primarily two things: Trump spoke much in the manner of a developmentally disabled student trying to recite memorized CliffsNotes on his keynote issues; and the challenges facing America always came back to him personally. America is losing to China—but he beats them all the time. ISIS is getting rich—but not as rich as he is. It’s unlikely that any president from George Washington through Barack Obama ever spoke in a manner even remotely akin to such self-serving word gruel, but that apparently was the rub, or more specifically, beside the point. A dominant swath of the American body politic had by 2015 unraveled to the point of desperation where they were willing to listen to a brazen braggart hold forth in bizarre cycles of conversational repetition that would try the patience of even the most experienced parent simply because he was actually talking about the key issues that mattered to them most and in a manner they considered at least forthright if not exactly couth.
Trump’s supporters back then, and those that still remain, were and still are routinely fond of referring to his amazing ‘instincts,’ his deft skill at playing something they call ‘3D Chess’ (as if the guy who struggles to speak in complete sentences is suddenly transformed into a Garry Kasparov when confronted with a foggy American landscape populated with the political pawns, rooks, bishops, knights, queens and kings of his opponents in every direction) and even those that will acknowledge his obvious difficulty in maintaining an attention span past that of an infant surrounded by colored lights and blown bubbles still insist he’s some sort of a card-counting savant a la Raymond from Rain Man or Alan in The Hangover.
Trump is neither a political Grand Master or an insurgent savant that’s beating the house at its own game, but he did manage to grasp something in the summer of 2015 that the other candidates in either major party did not: what the majority of white working Americans—as well as significant numbers of blacks, Chicanos and virtually every other racial and ethnic strata of American there is—wanted in terms of immigration. He also was able to demonstrate a layman’s understanding of their weariness of foreign wars without end and their escalating contempt for a globalist construct that had in every real sense left them behind.
This did not make Trump a genius. Nor did it mean he was a mad scientist or a crypto-Fascist in a developer’s garb. Ann Coulter likely summed it up best when she observed that Trump was simply the guy who looked down and picked up the $1,000 bill on the ground that everyone else had walked by.
After fending off fantastical efforts to deny him the nomination by the GOP Establishment and emerging from the convention as the nominee, he hit the ground running against Clinton who had survived her own much-too-close-for-comfort brush with another backbench challenger who nearly denied her the Democratic nomination a second time—and arguably would have had she not ginned the DNC deck with enough cards planted in her favor.
Throughout the general election campaign of 2016 Trump, for the most part, clung to that $1,000 bill that Coulter noted he had picked up and waved it around from the podium as he framed the election as the last chance to save the United States of America as the country had been primarily constituted in broad strokes for generations. And for the first time since Reagan and in a candid manner not really seen since Nixon, Trump appealed directly to the white working Americans and at least appeared to understand that they were really the only chance he—and his party of choice—had at landing back in the White House. He became the first candidate since Nixon and Reagan who didn’t get drawn into the Democratic Party’s game of trying to make the Republicans apologize for speaking directly to a majority of Americans in almost the same fashion the Democrats appeal to their own ethnic base of black and Latino voters, just less stridently and not nearly as venomously framing the opposition’s voting bloc. The difference, of course, was still clearly evident on the campaign trail as Clinton could and did speak directly to what she would deliver for blacks and Latinos—by name—while Trump still never said something along the lines of “This is my plan to help ease the disastrous impacts that open borders have brought working class and lower income white Americans,” but everyone knew he was speaking to the racial category that was and still remains a solid majority in the nation. Instead of saying the term ‘white America’ the Trump campaign settled on ‘rural America,’ but his audience was clear.
Naturally, the Democrats defecated themselves in outrage, or at least pretended to, as they’d grown accustomed to a GOP leadership (Bush, Dole, Bush II, McCain & Romney, et al) that would mostly ignore white Americans even as they fed off them and even when they did make appeals that appeared to be directed at white voters they were generally understood to be transparently half-hearted and of no particular value.
Yet by 2016, the Democratic Party considered its demographic realignment nearly complete and the Clinton that ran in 2016 didn’t need to have let alone want to have anything much to do with the essential bloc that her husband harnessed enough of when he ran in 1992—the working white voters Bill Clinton had tapped to save it back then. By the fall of 2016, the Democrats had come to believe the transformation of America was close enough to ‘finished’ that its coalition of blacks, Latinos and Millennial whites of the college-educated variety were enough to carry them to not only victory, but the first landslide in what they believed would be a perpetual series of electoral tidal waves. So carried away in fact had the hubris swept so many Democrats, including old pols among them whom should have know better, that veteran political observers in California were projecting Clinton victories in Texas, Georgia, Florida, Arizona and North Carolina—all states she would have been hard-pressed to confidently expect to carry on election night—and they never dreamed that their fabled ‘Blue Wall’ of overwhelmingly working class white states anchored in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin would fall to Trump. Not only did their Blue Wall crumble, but Trump also picked up Florida and Iowa as well and held on to North Carolina. The tidal surge of white voters in the polling stations also brought Trump to near victories in Minnesota and New Hampshire. According to a Pew Research Center analysis of the 2016 election complexion, Trump rolled up insurmountable margins among the white working class, drawing 64% of their vote to Clinton’s 28%. And according to Pew, working class whites accounted for more than 44% of all ballots cast in 2016. That Trump trounced Clinton among all white male voters in 2016 was not a surprise (though the 30-point spread turned the Democrats stomach), the fact that Trump also won the majority of ballots cast by white women voters—particularly considering Madelyn Albright’s dire warning of that “special place in hell” allotted for female voters who would dare not vote for Hillary—is likely what prompted Clinton’s election night psychotic break that left her unable to appear and graciously thank her stunned supporters (the campaign tasked John Podesta for that classless act) and explains her enduring public bitterness.
While the Democrats were expecting a ‘blue wave’ in 2016, what showed up at the polls was in fact a red-faced white wave. Or as author and cable commentator Van Jones framed it: “a whitelash.”
However it’s phrased, one thing is clear: that’s how utterly wrong the Democrats got it in November 2016. But that doesn’t mean they were wrong in the long game. In fact, they were likely just a tad premature, off the mark by only an election cycle or two if the demographic and cultural trend lines that have clearly emerged since the dawn of the 1990s continue unabated.
Which is what makes Trump’s transition and first 100 days such a fantastic fumble in the penultimate clutch moment so amazing, a bizarre act of pure political malfeasance of such magnitude that it’s akin to watching a quarterback at the Super Bowl in scoring position on fourth down with 10-seconds left on the clock take possession of the ball at the snap and then start hurtling the wrong way down the field while his ‘teammates’ cheer him on. There were of course some immediate signs of what was coming from a Trump presidency, such as Trump’s obsession with the crowd size at his inaugural address and other random, petty fixations with what were really meaningless distractions that seemed like the soulless babble of a reality television show. The starring roles doled out to Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner also premiered the nepotistic rot that had taken root in the White House on Day One of Trump’s arrival. But nothing was more of a dead giveaway that Trump either really didn’t know what he was doing or he never actually intended to act decisively to bring mass immigration under heel, restore lawful order to America’s immigration laws and secure the sovereign borders of the nation than when he effectively handed the critical opening act of his administration over to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Speaker of the House Paul Ryan—two men who epitomized the status quo of the GOP’s Business Class leadership that are committed to strip-mining everything possible from the country as they oversee its death. That and his nearly as fast distancing from and then his disgraceful long-running denouncement of the honorable gentleman from Alabama: Attorney General Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III. His dispatching of Steve Bannon in August 2017 was another clue as to the authenticity of Trump v. 2015-2016.
In the most fundamental of senses, and by no hand but his own, the Trump presidency, at least as advertised, was dead on arrival.
Trump didn’t drain the swamp at all, rather he slipped into it on a floating chaise lounge, told Paul and Mitch he was happy to let them keep running the national agenda and promptly started Tweeting about his unfolding legacy as the greatest president in the history of the United States of America.
The Trump Show, and that’s exactly what it has proved to be, has seen him zigzag all over the proverbial map, posing in front of prototypes of a wall that would never be built and issuing proclamations that would never be carried out, all while embarking on an arena U.S. concert tour in celebration of himself—a roadshow that has yet to end. As the 2020 election draws closer, in lieu of governing in a coherent and effective manner, Trump instead has attempted to continually rattle his political opponents by riffing wide-eyed boastful taunts much in the vein that Muhammad Ali would hurl at opponents back in the day when truly towering adversaries like Smokin’ Joe Frazier stood stoically ready to dance when the bell rang—and the Democrats would be smart to channel a little of Frazier’s calm demeanor that betrayed none of his deadly power in the ring (Frazier could take brutal punishment for eight rounds and then come out raining nuclear bombs on the boxer in front of him)—but while they were both fond of declaring “I’m the Greatest!” it is clear that Trump is no Ali.
The Champ often talked vividly poetic smack and then, with a few epic exceptions* (*see Smokin’ Joe Frazier and George Foreman for further details) he delivered and often dazzlingly so in the ring. He could float like a butterfly and sting like a bee. In contrast, since January 21, 2017, Trump has stumbled around tragically sober but looking increasingly punch-drunk as he’s rambled a raft of low rent smack-talk while delivering absolutely nothingin terms of his core campaign promises. Nothing.
Not one single mile of the real wall he vowed to build has been funded let alone actually built—and that includes the two solid years when the Republicans held the House, the Senate and the Oval Office. Not one mile. Not. One. Mile.
Trump’s rampant vows of issuing ‘Day One’ instructions to the GOP leadership—which again at the time held the entire legislative and executive branches and all while there was a so-called ‘conservative’ majority on the Supreme Court—died the very day he set foot in the Oval Office.
And none perhaps more glaringly so than the prospect of ensuring that workers who had no legal right to be on the job, or even in the country, would be identified and administratively removed through E-Verify. Even more than Trump’s mythical wall, the refusal of the American President and his cronies in the Republican leadership to institute a mandatory comprehensive verification system for employers to ensure that workers employed in America actually have a legal right to compete with American citizens for any job whatsoever is the benchmark sign of the GOP’s total and irreversible corruption. When the easiest, most common sense legislative step to protect American workers languishes in Congress and Trump does absolutely nothing to secure its passage but rather whines on Twitter at 3 a.m. (again, sober, which in and of itself is revealing) then it was undeniably clear even well within his first critical 100 days that the jig was up.
For all the weeping and wailing from the Left, one thing had to be clear come Christmas 2017: Trump was actually a splendidly wrapped early gift to the Democratic Party—as well as to the GOP establishment that had so desperately sought to kill his candidacy once it became clear its core messaging was resonating with a huge bloc of the American people that fateful summer of 2015. Trump has not been transformational in the slightest—he has been the status quo on steroids. He has been a bad goof. A loud-mouthed gag. A face-melting fart in a full elevator. While the Left insisted he was a Kluxster suited up in Brooks Brothers instead of a hood and robe courtesy of a repurposed WalMart bedsheet, in actuality Trump has proven to be little more than a carnival huckster who conned more than 63 million voters into buying his miracle water as he regaled them with his tales of extraordinary feats and accomplishments.
Faced with such brazen political domestic abuse by the head of the national household, many of the working and middle class white voters who cast their ballots for Trump appear to have retreated into a deep state of denial that borders on comatose; a virtual shutdown of their intellectual capacity to process and accept the horrifying depth of their betrayal at the hands of Trump. A common refrain now heard and read across social media maintains that Trump “is doing everything he can” and “he’s just one man against a horde of swamp-dwellers” and, even more hallucinatory: “He’s winning!” It’s a delusional estimation that’s something akin to members of Custer’s 7th Calvary Regiment telling each other its not as bad as it looks as they faced complete annihilation at Little Big Horn.
In order to restore the nation’s sovereignty by restoring sanity to its immigration policies, Trump could have summoned Ryan and McConnell to the White House on January 22, 2017, and informed them of the following: That without immediate Congressional approval for $100 billion-plus in funding for a 60-foot concrete blast barrier that would traverse the entire southern border, an immediate passage of E-Verify, an immediate quadrupling of the DHS/ICE/CBP budget and an immediate legislative fix to the bad policy of so-called ‘birthright citizenship’ (one that would ‘grandfather’ in all who have been granted citizenship under it but decisively ending the practice from a set date going forward), then any action on the GOP leadership’s ongoing agenda of corporate tax breaks, ending the Affordable Care Act, deregulation, etc., etc., etc., was simply dead on arrival in the Oval Office. Trump could have made it clear that the single greatest political upset in the history of American presidential elections was indeed going to have massive legislative consequences. Trump could have made it abundantly clear that failure by Ryan, McConnell and the GOP caucus to get in line and pass the clear-cut immigration agenda that he ran on would not only mean he would veto every single piece of legislation that Congress did deliver but that he would also immediately denounce the GOP leadership—and the members that supported their obfuscation on immigration—as betraying the American people in favor of their corporately delivered thirty pieces of silver. Trump could have told them that unless they moved and moved quickly on a dramatic and restrictive overhaul of mass immigration into the United States that he would begin holding his political rock shows in their districts—no matter what size the venue—where he would denounce them as craven traitors beholden to nothing more than the glint of bullion as the country disintegrates around them.
Trump could have done all of that and much, much more. He wielded immense power that the voters invested him with and in the earliest weeks of his administration that political capital was at its zenith. Ryan and McConnell would have had to deliver up what Trump demanded on behalf of the American people or faced total political annihilation at the hands of the president within months of him taking office.
Instead, Trump did nothing of the sort, rather he surrendered his leadership in favor of a Twitter show and signed a blindingly massive budget ‘deal’ that explicitly enshrined the policy of open-borders and explosive mass immigration rates. Ryan and McConnell must have shared a chuckle as they so easily rolled him during his first year in office.
With virtually every single one of his mass immigration-related policy vows either abandoned, punted, killed or altered to the point of irrelevance, Trump has spent much of his presidency on the links—147 days as of August 31, 2019, according to the detailed tee-time log maintained at TrumpGolfCount.com—and online: on August 31, 2019, Trump had already posted 11 Tweets by midday alone, all part of a 44,000 Tweet tsunami that he has unleashed since March 2009. Even if spread over the past decade that Trump has been on the platform he has averaged 4,400 Tweets per annum or nearly a dozen Tweets every single day of the year. But its far more likely that most of Trump’s Twitter storm actually broke and has poured forth unabated since June 2015. And unlike some other public figures or corporate execs that employ social media marketing teams to produce their brand content, Trump is clearly solely responsible for his Twitter feed. And in that respect it resembles just another one of his gaudy and garish properties; a mirrored world that feeds his ego while white-glove catering to his extremely limited vocabulary.
Trump and Twitter, togetha 4’eva! #TrueLove.
With Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell and their respective Business Class caucuses left completely in charge of the Republican’s national agenda, the GOP returned to its business as usual practices, which is to say the facilitation of the accelerating mass looting of the country. The ongoing firework displays of events like Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearings or the gun control ‘debate’ that’s rolled out in the wake of every mass casualty shooting (yet rarely if ever in relation to mass casualty cities where under one-party progressive governance Democrats have long instituted European-grade gun controls to no effect whatsoever on the annual body count), while instructive in that they reaffirm the undeniable reality that the end of America’s days is now at hand, ultimately they are merely Polaroids from the larger grim picture. The Democrats have plunged into an absolute psychosis that has turned them against working and middle class white Americans on a breathtaking scale and with a vehemence that increasingly is approaching something close to the dark days that were precursors to some of the 20th Century’s mass murder movements, all while the Republican Party’s leadership remains laser-focused on monetizing every element of the country that can be harnessed for profit while letting the rest of it burn down to the foundations.
If America is in the midst of a raging cultural and political riot—and it is—then the Democratic Party’s leadership are the wild-eyed arsonists who are setting fire to every building they can and the Republican Party’s leadership are the determined looters who trail behind them and race from building to building, leaping over the flames and dashing through them not to extinguish the fires but to haul off everything of value that they can, right down to the old fixtures that they might be able to get something for on the global bazaar.
And like looters exhausted from running amok for so long as the town burns down around them, the GOP’s corporate leadership now appears to at least suspect that the hour grows late for them and that soon they will have to make a break for it, an epic getaway that will be assisted by helipads and fortified yacht clubs where Jordan Belfort-worthy Naomi-class superyachts wait dockside with engines idling as the Wolves of Wall Street plan to split for parts unknown.
Even Trump’s reelection in 2020, assuming he survives the Democrats impeachment effort, is immaterial to the fate that now looms large for the Republican Party.
The dye indeed is cast.
If he survives what the effort to remove him from office that with every passing day appears to take on momentum that could carry it from an impeachment vote in the House to a Senate trial where the outcome is far less certain than it was during the Mueller investigation, Trump’s reelection bid will remain clearly predicated on—unsurprisingly—simple math and a simple assumption. The basic arithmetic is that Trump merely has to hold the states he won in 2016 and if possible pick up a couple of spares that he came close to last time around, namely Minnesota, where Trump lost by less than two-percent of the vote and New Hampshire, where Trump lost by less than one-percent. That formula is underpinned by the rudimentary assumption that the white working and middle class voters that handed him victory in 2016—including the simultaneously vaunted and reviled independent white women voters—will survey the group psychosis that’s currently in-progress among the Democratic field of candidates and conclude that four more years of a belligerent, nauseatingly boastful, Attention Deficit Disorder-suffering, Twitter-addicted Trump is tragically more desirable than the Jonestown progressive paradise the Democrats are currently stirring up in their ideological Kool-Aid vats.
Trump is counting on the oldest and coldest of pure cynical political calculation: ‘They have nowhere else to go.’
Yet it remains a roll of the dice for Trump in 2020, particularly given his translucently thin margins across critical Rust Belt and Midwestern states the last time around, since it wouldn’t take that many working white voters at all to decide on another equally old election day adage—to go fishin’ instead of voting—to set the GOP’s last blimp ablaze and signal the end of the Republicans as a national party.
Whether the polls rolling in through the autumn of 2019 are any more of an accurate bellwether then the polling data that filled the air throughout the fall of 2016 proved to be is not yet known, but even assuming there is a greater pool of Trump voters awaiting election day to emerge from the shadows and into the voting booth to make their presence felt once more, the political landscape continues to shift and shake around the GOP as the demographic floodwaters from foreign shores continue to rise and the cultural institutions long ago surrendered en total by the Republicans continue to narratively program the waves of ‘students’ that emerge each spring from an academia also equally abandoned to the radical progressive Left. Not that long ago the Republican leadership and their handmaidens in the media could still be heard chortling about the college students who’d majored in what they presumed to be useless or at least politically harmless ethnocentric studies and other, more bizarre curricula that they assumed assured them a future of nothing more threatening than a lifetime of living in their parents spa in between shifts at Starbucks.
What the GOP either didn’t count on or, more likely, care about was the reality that while some broke students happily returned to the home spa where they could be more conveniently catered to by their parent-servants, legions of others were quickly recycled back into academia while many more did in fact fan out across virtually every industry and market imaginable and set up their ideological shop inside established corporations and start-ups of every variety. There’s a reason that more companies each year publish and promote so-called ‘value statements’ that often read as if they were cribbed near-verbatim from the cultural Maoist talking points that are now standard issue in academia. Their is a reason that more CEOs and other corporate executives are politicizing and indeed weaponizing their brands in alignment and alliance with progressive Left virtue signaling (or what used to be called ‘marching orders’) on issues ranging from the Second Amendment to abortion to gender identity to race relations—unsurprisingly in lockstep uniformity. The GOP’s leadership, on camera at any rate, professes to be shocked, confused and occasionally even ‘concerned’ about the brazen and accelerating elimination from digital platforms of not just what are described as conservative voices but indeed increasingly really any voicethat does not present an adequate adherence to the progressive Left orthodox dogma—and yet as with the legacy media, the nation’s universities, its K-12 public education system, its entertainment industry and so many other critical venues for public discourse, the Republican Party’s leadership has been an idle spectator to its own demise on this front as well.
All of the trend lines marking the demographic shifts and cultural programming that will doom the GOP and destroy the nation as it existed have only escalated since Trump was elected nearly three years ago, and their pace has only accelerated.
By 2017, while America had surged to more than 325 million people—a rising population tide driven by mass immigration and births to immigrants—the U.S. Census Bureau reported the classification of the ‘white, non-Hispanic’ demographic had dropped by more than 15% to ‘just’ 60.7% of the population share. That is still a dominant ethnic majority by any measure and far too white of a country in any respect for the progressive Left to ever accept and thus they continue their round-the-clock efforts to pummel it into silent submission. But while Trump and the GOP are still hoping that there are enough working and middle class whites in the country pissed off enough and frightened enough to turn out in numbers that will carry the day once more—and they just might—they lose sight of the fact that for many of those voters Trump’s election in 2016 was the last ballot cast for what once again proved to be a total betrayal, if this time a significantly more freakish one.
It’s not that there aren’t enough working and middle class white voters left in America to keep Trump and the GOP politically breathing for four more years, there certainly are, it’s just whether there are enough left who decide it’s worth it.
Trump’s prospects of holding Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and even Ohio are probably an even bet at best—he prevailed in Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania by razor-thin margins and he can’t afford to lose even one of them—though he may hold onto Iowa where he trounced Clinton by nearly double digits and will almost certainly score again in Indiana, where he blew Clinton out by a nearly 20% margin. All six of those states range from preponderantly white to overwhelmingly white and all have varying degrees of significant manufacturing footprints and deep reservoirs of rural culture—critical ingredients to keeping Trump in office and delaying however briefly the GOP’s entry into political hospice care.
The states where Trump is clearly in trouble in 2020 are North Carolina, Georgia, Florida and Arizona, four states he carried in 2016 that accounted for 71 electoral votes and four states where he might well wave goodbye to, along with his reelection, in 2020. The demographics in all four of these states have continued to shift and the only real question come next November will be whether Trump and the GOP are able to not only return all of their 2016 voters for a repeat performance at the ballot box—including the considerable number of white Democrats that Trump managed to flip in key states—but to expand overall white voter turnout and further enlarge their share of it. In Florida, non-Hispanic whites now account for 53% of the population, in Georgia that number is now 52% of the populace and in Arizona the number of non-Hispanic whites account for about 54% of the state’s population. In North Carolina, ethnic whites still account for approximately 63% of the state population, but Trump’s four-percent margin of victory there in 2016 reflected the shrinking fortunes of the Republicans from even 2004, when Bush beat Kerry like a bongo drum, running up a 13% margin of victory in the Tar Heel State.
If Trump were to lose any one of those four states, a combination of them or all of them, it’s hard to see where he could make it up across the electoral map in 2020. Virginia, a state that the Republicans could reliably count on for more than a generation—the GOP won the Commonwealth in seven consecutive presidential elections from 1980 through 2004—has been denied them since 2008 and is almost certainly gone for good, yet another Appomattox on the Republicans trail of retreat having surrendered the nation’s borders and its public school systems. Southwestern states like Nevada, Colorado and New Mexico that had long been competitive for the GOP—Bush carried all of them in 2004—fell like Virginia in 2008 and haven’t swung red since and given the demographically-driven political genetics now dominant in those states its likely they too are gone for good.
The halcyon days when the Republicans were power players up and down the Western and Eastern seaboards are but a faded memory, for forty years after Ronald Reagan’s triumph had once more heralded the depth and sweep of the white working and middle class vote from California to New York the GOP has long since completed its mass political suicide in those electoral rich anchors that once propelled it to 500-electoral vote, mushroom cloud bombings of Democratic contenders. The extinction-level event of the Republicans in California, which has seen the GOP completely annihilated as a relevant political force in the state and reduced to relic status that fields candidates as sideshow curiosities, has offered powerful portents of what one party rule under a radical progressive Left will look like for the rest of the country by the end of the coming decade.
Gavin Newsom, the San Francisco pretty boy and social scene-maker who was treated to his own Harper’s Bazaar photo spread that highlighted the carcinogenic amalgamation of politics and celebrity that is now ubiquitous in twilight America, decimated the GOP’s sacrificial goat in November 2018 by a three million vote, 23%-percent margin of victory. While 4.7 million Californians cast their ballots for a Republican named John H. Cox, their election day would have been better spent out on the beach drinking a long chain of Mai Tais in remembrance of a Golden State that is long, long gone, sleeping off the hangover and then booking the U-haul for their escape. While Newsom’s victory was never in question—California hasn’t had a Republican governor in a decade, hasn’t had a Republican senator in nearly three decades and the party has been eliminated from virtually all statewide offices—the absolute impunity with which Democrats now lord over the collapsing state was exemplified not by his election but by Newsom’s nearly immediate and brazen reversal of the will of Californians by his decreeing a moratorium on all executions. Newsom’s imperial decree came hardly a year after California’s voters had once again convincingly affirmed their support for the death penalty and, with but a stroke of his pen, it radiated the cold contempt he harbors for the plebs.
Less than a generation ago such a move on the death penalty would have been politically fatal—and quickly so—for Newsom in California, a state where three California Supreme Court justices were removed from office by a popular uprising at the ballot box for their obstinate refusal to allow capital punishment for the most heinous of convicted killers housed on San Quentin’s death row. Yet in 2019, Newsom can defy the will of the people of California without any perceptible sense of foreboding whatsoever. The GOP has been politically exterminated, the media is in the bag, Hollywood is onboard, the campuses have transitioned into ideological grooming centers and most of what remains of the once mighty middle class in California is plotting their departure.
Faced with a staggering homeless crisis, crumbling infrastructure from Yreka to San Ysidro, exploding rents and home prices, permanent gridlock on the traffic arterials that connect residents with their work, failed schools and a chronic water shortage in the face of surging populations even as the most violent breed of criminal prowls the streets of California today fearless of official reprisal, Newsom has unveiled a radically different set of progressive priorities since taking office in January: he has ordered a halt to the death penalty, declared California a sanctuary state and has granted clemency to illegal immigrants convicted of crimes in order to prevent their deportation, targeted legal gun owners with an escalating plethora of restrictions designed to disarm them while unleashing developers to launch a massive campaign of high-density developments even as he retires for the weekends to his comfortable spread in rural Marin County.
This is the face and the fact of what one party rule in California looks like today and it is indeed what is about to finish falling across the nation by no later than the end of this decade.
And Gavin Newsom’s view of California leading the nation into the abyss of dissolution and violent chaos has been slow cooking inside the beltway for nearly two generations. And at the heart of this stunning makeover has always been mass immigration. A quarter-century ago veteran financial writer Peter Brimelow described in his 1995 groundbreaking work on mass immigration Alien Nation this so very telling exchange between Sam Donaldson of ABC News and NPR’s Cokie Roberts on the July 25, 1993, broadcast of This Week With David Brinkley:
“[Native-born Americans] don’t have any more right to this country, in my view, than people who came here yesterday,” Donaldson breezily opined. Roberts didn’t miss a beat: “That’s right!”
Eight years after Brimelow’s cogent deconstruction of what mass immigration at the behest of the markets meant for the American people, Sen. Zell Miller’s 2003 book A National Party No More: The Conscience Of A Conservative Democrat hit bookstores and heralded what he saw as the end of the Democratic Party. Its dust jacket peppered with glowing plugs from the likes of GOP open-border stalwarts Jack Kemp, Larry Kudlow and Newt Gingrich as well as their nightly man-servant Sean Hannity, Zell’s eulogy for the Democrats was, unsurprisingly, not just premature but completely wrong. While Miller mourned the transition of his political party from a home that he recognized and felt welcome in to a progressive cult compound that would ultimately come to despise his very existence—he started out in a Democratic Party that reminded him of Tara but shuffled off this planet last year gazing upon a party that resembles Jonestown—Miller missed the mark about the Democrats fortunes, apparently unable to grasp that the open border and mass immigration policies to which he himself was accomplice to in actual fact guaranteed that a rabidly balkanized Democratic Party would be the only party left standing to wield power unchecked from Imperial Washington. While Miller finally bestirred himself to offer some canned commentary in his book about how he is opposed to illegal immigration and he belatedly bemoans some of the more notable havoc it has wrecked across the country, he still refused to come to grips with the staggering weight that mass immigration en total had delivered the nation.
“Legal immigration? Certainly,” Miller writes. “It’s what helped make this country great. There are immigrants waiting in line to come into this country and they are obeying the law. Give them a chance to become American citizens, instead of illegals who have made a mockery of the American Dream.” Actually, what made America work as well as it did across much of the 20th Century was a profound reduction in all immigration to the nation, a moratorium that allowed for a great period of assimilation into a largely shared American ideal and national values conveyed and expressed in the English language. By the mid-1960s the American nation was probably more culturally cohesive in the broader sense than at any time since its inception.
And virtually all of that has since been steadily eroded as men like Miller looked on, said one thing and did nothing. A year after his book was published, Miller delivered the keynote address at the Republican National Convention and did not mention the word ‘immigration’ of any variety even once—in the middle of a Bush Administration that was allowing more than 3 million immigrants to illegally cross the Southern border annually. Miller instead hit all the cues that Bush Inc. demanded, calling for American soldiers to be flung into countries all across the globe but to never stand a watch on our own nation’s frontier.
The Democrats were certainly by then not at any real risk of being wiped off the national stage but even as Miller spoke in 2004 the Republican Party was indisputably flying directly into its turbulent date with destiny.
The cancer that had been lustily gorging on McCain’s brain for quite some time may have finally laid him six-feet low in August of 2018, but even Stage IV Glioblastoma couldn’t knock him out of his Senate seat while he still had a detectable pulse. And that’s because McCain & Co. were damned sure determined that deadly malignancy or no, America had better understand that McCain had a Senate seat for life.
And so it is for the American aristocracy that continues to rise and rule amid the rubble. As the cities collapse and the heartland overdoses, the imperial elites flaunt a tenure they consider irrevocable.
But what, you may ask, of McCain’s capably serving the seven million-plus people of Arizona, of reflecting their values and advancing their voice in the upper-chamber of Congress and making sure their interests are skillfully represented? Surely the needs of the citizens whom he was charged with representing—and paid a handsome $174,000 base salary of tax dollars annually to carry out—would mandate that a terminally ill old man accept that his long run was at an end and prompt him to gracefully step down from the Senate to allow the governor to appoint a healthy replacement who could immediately focus full-time on Arizona and the nation—as opposed to hastily getting their affairs in order, making personal farewells and settling some old political scores.
After all, considering that McCain was quite willing to surrender to an enemy on the battlefield in Vietnam for an extended engagement at the notorious Hanoi Hilton, surely giving up power in Washington was something that would come so much easier. No?
Ahhhhh, well, in the summer of 2018 the cold retort from McCain’s ranch outside of Sedona to any suggestion that he and his family not cling to power to the truly bitter end was unmistakably clear and summed up rather simply: ‘Let them not eat cake, but rather let the pathetic proletariat rabble that dare call themselves Americanswith any sense of national meaning gaze with hungry eyes at the glory of true power and the sweet indulgences it affords. Let them behold the majesty of Imperial Washington and in their dumbstruck awe let them then understand their true lot in life.’
Thus the weeklong parade of Deep State pseudo-grief flowed forth from The Grand Canyon State to Washington in a tide of garish pomp and grim frills for the fallen imperial warlord amid choreographed proceedings that were filled with black Cadillac SUV motorcades complete with the Secret Service ‘war wagons,’ military honor guards, surreal on-air eulogies delivered by MDMA-dosed media players throughout the Beltway grid and, of course, that now most ubiquitous calling card of the governing-elite: the stone-faced security teams sporting ear-pieces and designer shades that serve as another silent but potent reminder to working Americans everywhere of just who possesses power—and who doesn’t.
The ultimate measure of real power in America today is the presence of the Praetorian Guard; armored-up and packing immense firepower even as Jane & Joe Public’s right to legally hold just enough heat to protect what little is theirs is eroding daily.
John McCain’s state funeral was a watershed event in 21st Century America, as it highlighted in the starkest of terms the vast gulf that now divides the infinitesimal ruling class, the Romanesque global empire they have spun and woven and the common American citizens whose labor, blood and treasure they have spent so lavishly—indeed so wantonly—to assemble it.
And nothing was left to chance, nothing was left unscripted, in the cortège that Americans were reminded over and over again that McCain himself had spent the last year of his life meticulously planning (versus say going to work). Thus with the nuclei of America’s self-declared political royalty assembled in the National Cathedral in what they surely believed was an awe-inspiring congregation of raw power, the first order of business was to demonstrate the true meaning of power by not only highlighting who was on the guest list and visible in the pecking order of pews, but by underscoring who was not invitedas well—and making a show of it.
That Trump was not invited as the sitting President was hardly a surprise but still poor form on behalf of the McCains, and some may argue that it was a classless move that sank to a petty depth that was simply, well, Trumpian. Yet it was McCain’s decision to not only besmirch his former running mate Sarah Palin in his near-posthumous book The Restless Wave by letting ghostwriters spell out his regret at choosing Palin instead of Sen. Joe Lieberman for his Vice President (his fellow ‘let’s go to war bro’ Sen. Lindsey Graham was assuredly McCain’s instinctive choice as Veep, but Graham’s personal life would not have survived the scrutiny a national ticket draws), but to then also 86-her from the invited guest list at his funeral that once more revealed the sheer hatred of working white Americans that boiled inside of McCain even on his death bed. Sarah Palin provided the McCain campaign its shot of adrenaline to the heart of the American white working class and in doing so offered its only if fleeting chance to turn the corner on Obama in 2008, and in return of that service McCain—along with his wife Cindy and daughter Meghan—enraged that Palin stole McCain’s lackluster show, repaid her by erasing her from the imperial rites that would mark his passage to eternity. It was meant as a cold slap in the face of Sarah to be sure, but even more so to the tens of millions of working white voters she politically embodied.
McCain simply no longer had any use for Palin or Americans like her and his death bed was his last chance to take another dump on them.
To say there was no love lost between the McCain clan in the immediate aftermath of his death and the white working class Americans that McCain and his family so despised would be an understatement. Even as McCain’s corpse was laying cold in the National Cathedral while his daughter Meghan weaponized her weepy eulogy in honor of her father, across the spectrum of digital media that ran from right wing to independent to the avowedly populist left, McCain was excoriated in real time for his fundamental roles in the wars without end, the rotten corruption of the Keating Five and his membership in it and, of course, his hellbent commitment to keep America’s borders wide open to ensure the ongoing mass migration that is building a vast and foreign supplied underclass in America will continue unabated.
In a blizzard of toxicity, McCain’s name was gleefully dragged through the mud and sewer by millions of Americans who were clearly sickened by his royal send-off and the untethered and completely tone-deaf pomp that accompanied it all. While the networks were glued to McCain’s long procession, much of the rest of America could be found on the ‘comments’ sections across digital platforms across the political spectrum, yet mostly authored by working class whites on sites that would be classified as on the right side of aisle.
Even as Meghan McCain was tearfully spitting her fantastical homage to her father—whom she does literally owe everything to, not the least of which is her paycheck and alleged relevance (Hunter Biden, anyone?)—the web was on fire with jubilant denunciations of her as ‘Porker McCain’ and recommending mourners send the McCain estate a baker’s dozen of Krispy Kreme doughnuts in lieu of flowers. The McCain family’s icy contempt for working white Americans was openly repaid during the funeral with unvarnished disrespect conveyed in a vast blast of popular disparagement, unlikely as it was to be paid any mind by the legacy media let alone the elites who sound-proofed themselves from the masses long ago.
As America’s descent into one-party rule now fast approaches, what the post-Republican era must be considered, at least briefly, for the Democrats’ ability to hold the nation together is not in doubt: they can’t, nor actually do they intend to, but it’s worth noting that as mass migration from all corners of the globe continues and accelerates into the fatally gored and badly listing United States of America, it is likely that the ruling elites that accomplished this epic scuttling of a ship of state will begin to feel their own sense of dread as the human tide begins to reach and breach their captain’s quarters.
For the correlation between the pursuit of empire and its inevitable exploitation of mass immigration to the benefit of the imperial ruling class is well established throughout history, from Rome to Napoleon’s French Empire that Monsieur Bonaparte and his Grande Armée established across Europe in a breathtakingly short time as the 19th Century dawned. Acclaimed biographer Frank McLynn’s 700-page exploration of the watershed French statesman-turned-Emperor, first published in the United States in 2002 and succinctly entitled Napoleon, paints a portrait of the Frenchman that reveals Bonaparte’s dazzling achievements as he led France to its continental apogee and the destructive ends it ultimately wrought. The Paris of the opening decade of the 1800s, McLynn points out, was a thriving economic center that was fed by fourteen ‘thoroughfares’ that snaked throughout the continent and its 80 million inhabitants that fell under its imperial rule.
As the French army flowed out of France—like the American Interstate Highway system, Napoleon’s road network was designed to facilitate the rapid deployment of troops—more than just ‘goods’ flowed into the bustling City of Light as the empire swelled.
“Particular beneficiaries where the cotton, chemical and mechanical industries, where the impact of war stimulated new technologies,” McLynn writes. “The influx of foreigners to Paris in this period encouraged the manufacturing of luxury goods. Another, less welcome, influx was the annual immigration of 40,000 seasonal workers, many of whom stayed on in the city in the dead season to form the kernel of the ‘dangerous classes’ that are such a feature of 19th Century French literature. This aspect if the economic boom worried employers and the authorities, who did not want a concentration of workers in the capital, fearing overcrowding, famine, disease, unemployment and riots.”
Overcrowding, famine, disease, unemployment and riots. Sound familiar? As the underlying overpopulation and population density issues drive those factors abroad on virtually every continent, they act as a massive push-factor for the masses toward America, where they are already manifesting here and will increase in scope and frequency and will eventually reach a degree that even its architects cannot escape.
As for the fate of Europe, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s recent public declaration that if the EU were to even describe Turkey’s offensive into Kurdish-held areas of Syria as an ‘occupation’ he would unleash more than 3 million refugees toward Europe’s southern frontiers lays bare the reality that mass immigration is indeed an atomic-grade weapon—something political scientists in Mexico discovered long ago. Whether it is sooner or later, with millions of refugees now planted in Turkey, Syria, the former nation-state of Libya, Morocco or any number of other states and regions, that trigger will be pulled. That button will be pushed. And thus the day of Europe’s own reckoning as a result of its policies is effectively at hand.
In America, the death throes of the Republican Party is not without its comic relief, as Fox News programs reflect with a fascinatingly reliable frequency these days with the network putting Karl Rove—the GOP’s ‘architect’ turned undertaker—in high rotation across virtually all of its news and opinion shows alongside the Congressional Republican caucus’s aptly-named minority leader, Kevin McCarthy from California. Or as they are frequently referred to by millions of Americans prowling the web and venting their political spleens: ‘Pig-Man & The Cuck.’ The reference to Rove as ‘Pig-Man’ seems an amalgamation of the infamous if only briefly glimpsed character from Seinfeld that Kramer rescued from a government experiment and Rove’s actual real-life passing resemblance to Porky Pig. The ridicule of McCarthy, a plain-spoken Congressman from Bakersfield, seems to be anchored in the sense that he’s a caretaker tapped by former Speaker of the House Paul Ryan to settle into a compliant role of clean-up duty in the oozie aftermath of the Ryan-led final gang-bang of the American working class.
These two men, along with various walk-on appearances from the GOP’s veteran All-Star lineup that led the party to this moment of political obliteration, are featured as soothsayers of what should be done next. The fact that the Republicans elected McCarthy as their leader at all speaks volumes: the California Congressional delegation numbers 52 seats in the lower House in 2019—45 of which are held by Democrats, just seven by the Republicans. Clearly the GOP leadership knows success when they see it. It seems likely that by 2028 at the latest the last lingering Republican remnants of its Congressional footprint will be washed away forever, a permanent erasure the GOP signed on for with its embrace of mass immigration.
California’s one-party state fate, such as it foreshadows what awaits the nation, remains on full display in the nightly news cycle as the autumn of 2019 proceeds, with much of the state literally ablaze and the rest of it smoldering on the brink of explosion, calls to mind a passing glance of the Golden State’s precarious national perch that author Scott Spencer reflected on in his brilliant novel River Under The Road in 2017, which captured the devolving cultural zeitgeist through the eyes of two couples across a series of garden parties and city soirees that unfold from the 1970s through the 1980s, carrying the reader from New York to Los Angeles. Spencer, who hit big when he penned Endless Love in 1979, delivers a delicious estimation of LA’s eventual certain doom through the eyes of a screenwriter who would soon detonate his career at a party gone awry in the Hollywood Hills:
“Put that hole in the ozone on hold, put those geological squeaks and twitters along the shit-eating grin of the San Andreas on hold. Put those wildfires in the hills of Santa Monica on hold…And by all means put on hold the sense of impending doom that seized Thaddeus the moment his plane touched the runway at LAX, the sense that here was the place that one day was going to blow up or burn down or be swallowed whole, and when it happened no one in all the world would be terribly surprised—sad, yes, horrified, naturally, but there would not be the slightest element of surprise. The city would become a vast screaming ward of suffering survivors and the great unanswerable would follow them to their mass grave: What did they expect? How could they have built those multi-million dollar houses where they could not stand? The city was like a display of Fabergé eggs set up on an escalator.”
Thirty-eight years after Endless Love and Spencer is still offering deadly live fire on the pages: How could they have built those multi-million dollar houses where they could not stand? The city was like a display of Fabergé eggs set up on an escalator.
The apocalyptic ‘Big One’ that has long been forecasted to explode the Richter scale and lay Los Angeles to waste while sending California careening into the sea as America’s Madagascar has not yet struck, but the high tide of mass immigration will indeed eventually rise to swallow all those fine Fabergé eggs at the top of the escalator to drown them in the violent chaos of dysfunction and corruption that had consumed the quality of life for everyone else below them.
And on that note, the political extermination of the Republican Party and the ensuing self-inflicted death of the West brings to mind once more another moment when Jim Morrison offered his casually delivered yet eviscerating perspective on the changing landscape around him, though this time not uttered in a Hollywood café to a British one-and-done pop prop like Ian Whitcomb, but rather a flash caught on film a couple years later in his never commercially released HWY: An American Pastoral.(Note: This writer obtained a bootleg copy of the film decades ago.) Shot in mid-to-late 1969, the meandering amateur art film’s story arc, if one could call it that, would go on to serve as the outline of The Door’s song Riders On The Storm that was featured on their final 1971 album LA Woman.But a brief scene toward the end of the film that had carried a hitchhiking Morrison from the Mojave desert into Los Angeles finds Jim in front of what looks like a skidrow bar at night, briefly bartering with the doorman over an apparent cover charge and pondering aloud: “Do they have girls in there?” Then as he looks around the street, he offers almost in dejected passing: “Is this LA or TJ? Some days it’s getting kind of hard to tell.” It was a casually dismissive comment tinged with the low-octane racism that was itself a product of the era, yet one imbued with irony given that Los Angeles in 1970 had one of the largest white populations among the Great Cities in America. Yet his caustic balking at Chicanos on the street captured an outlier of the racial divisions to come.
Less than two years later Morrison would make his way over to Paris for his own farewell, a Paris he surely wouldn’t recognize today any more than he would his adopted hometown of Los Angeles now.
But his long-form observations transcribed on vinyl nonetheless captured the heartbeats of the Western world as it danced along the cliff of its own demise still ring true today, and when it comes to America in late 2019, Mojo’s taunt to the crowd on The Doors Roadhouse Blues tour one night in 1970, possibly at The Felt Forum in Madison Square Garden, probably best sums up the end game of the West now in progress:
“But I tell you this man, I tell you this, I don’t know what’s gonna happen man, but I wanna have my kicks before the whole shithouse goes up in flames. Alright!”
With the GOP leadership now voluntarily standing at their political gallows as America disintegrates and as Europe’s bureaucrats put Western civilization’s final affairs pleasantly in order, it seems like ol’ Jimbo may have been right on the money once again on the way out of his own door all those years ago.
The sharp-witted writer’s meltdown on her Netflix show is a disappointing but perfectly fitting tribute to Hollywood’s self-righteous, vainglorious and hermetically sealed daisy chain
By Mark Cromer
[Author’s Note: With Chelsea Handler now debuting her faux self-flagellation in the film Are You There Privilege, It’s Me, Chelsea, for this writer it was a depressing moment as the sharp woman who seemed rather comfortable confronting America’s culture psychosis with at least a casual and fearless honesty, I was reminded of this column I wrote on her post-election on-air meltdown. I hoped it wasn’t a sign of things to come for her. I was wrong.]
“We lived in this nice Jewish neighborhood. Everyone had Mercedeses and Jaguars, and I was going to school in a Pinto.”
— Chelsea Handler to W. Magazine, December 2008
Let me just start by saying that as a kid from a not-that-nice of a neighborhood in Pomona, California, who spent some of my early high school years driving my mom’s hand-me-down, decade-old 1972 candy orange Pinto that sported a powder blue hood that we had found at Pik-a-Part, well, Chelsea, I can relate.
Pulling into the student parking lot at Pomona High School in 1982 wasn’t so bad, since a lot of my fellow Red Devils didn’t even have a car yet, but driving my hood fabulous ride up to Claremont High, Alta Loma High or Glendora High for an away tennis match and seeing my fellow young WASPs in their Bimmers and Jags was a bitch.
And so was flipping burgers at Carl’s Jr. on Indian Hill Boulevard back then, wearing a paper hat courtesy of Carl Karcher Enterprises as a Frank Burns-type manager named ‘Ed’ threatened to fire me from my $3.35-an-hour job if he had to wait for one more order of fries, and yet somehow I managed to endure the hardships and self-inflicted humiliations of growing up a white working class boy in P-Towne.
And I made my way.
By all accounts, Chelsea Handler did too, and then on the sheer power of her own intellect and resourcefulness she rose through Hollywood across the multi-platforms of writing, stand-up comedy and acting just to land at that Tranquility Base of her own show, which is where most of us discovered her. An electric bundle of brains and natural beauty, Handler was the female counterpart to Bill Maher, but perhaps with a tad more balls, or so at least it seemed at the time.
Like most of us, I suspect, I had stumbled upon her earlier but didn’t really start paying attention until Chelsea Lately on E! in 2007, when she really came out as a double shot, smart counterpoint to all the ass-kissing celebrity guest shows. A ‘saucy Jane’ slashing her way through virtually every Hollywood whore on their way to Tinseltown after parties.
What was not to admire?
Then in 2008 Simon & Schuster published Are You There, Vodka? It’s Me, Chelsea and along with millions of other American readers, and perhaps more than most of them, I was completely smitten. I’d long had a crush on Ann Coulter for essentially the same reasons: I found them both sharp as all hell, untethered to the ideological Home Offices of either major party, fearless free thinkers and both quite pretty.
Ahhhh, could that have been almost a decade ago? Well, evidently.
So the night after the election and Trump’s triumph, Handler went on her show and instead of a nuanced and reasoned take on Trump’s victory, akin to what Dave Chappell riffed during his cold open of Saturday Night Live just a few nights later, she instead turned into something that I, at least, hadn’t seen before: Chelsea the sniveling, self-serving, bawling victim.
Her opening got it started. She said she was sad, ok, disappointed, um, sure, and then she said she was confused. Confused? Confused. Uh, about what, Chelsea, that you were wrong?
Oh no, not that!
“So the election is over and the result is not what was I was hoping for, so I think today’s show is going to be a little different for all of us, because like a lot of people in this country I am sad, I’m disappointed and I’m confused. But if Hillary can make it through a concession then I can make it through a stupid television show. And I’m taking her lead, she said we can do it so I’m going to do it for every woman out there.”
And her studio audience broke into applause, on cue. Because you know, she’s doing this “for every woman out there.” Alright, Joan of Arc.
But digest that for a moment. And then lets start with the actual facts.
Hillary Clinton did not give a concession speech, at least on election night when she had clearly lost, which is when concession speeches are traditionally given. To the contrary, after a lifetime speechifying about the inherent power of Feminism, the Madame Sister sent a man—a man—named John Podesta down to what was left of her sobbing minions to deliver the obvious bad news: SHE lost. But evidently it took a man to say so.
Word to Mills College: suck on that.
And in that moment alone there were millions of American women who channeled a little Madeline Albright in thinking “There’s a special place in hell for a woman who doesn’t have enough estrogen to face the music, congratulate the winner publicly and thank us tonight in front of the country for all that we did for her.” It was yet another particular act of entitled Hillary Clinton cowardice that had Shirley Chisholm rolling over in her grave. By hiding in her penthouse, Hillary said, in no uncertain terms, “I lost, so thanks for nothing, you unworthy proles!”
Reports now circulate that after Wisconsin turned red Hillary realized the jig was up and a little later managed the nightmare call to Trump before she suffered a psychotic break and began shrieking about the FBI’s Jim Comey torpedoing her campaign and then projectile vomiting high voltage indictments against everyone but herself, then accordingly collapsed in a smoldering heap and poor Bobby Mook decided Podesta would have to atone for his Wikileaks infamy and carry news of the Appomattox surrender to the troops.
Then there’s Handler’s declaration that she was “taking her lead” and was intent on “doing it for every woman out there.”
Well how gracious of you Chelsea, um, but what about the 30 million women that voted for Trump? Oh, snap!
As the tears began to well in her eyes, Handler introduced, with a fleeting moment of class I should add, her guest for the evening, California Sen. Barbara Boxer, an old Liberal that I’m still proud to say I voted for twice, in her first two times on the senatorial ballot, before I eventually had to pull the plug. But I still like her. She’s no Golden State legend like Dianne Feinstein, mind you, but like Dianne, Boxer has class, smarts and moxie. I’ve come to disagree with her as all hell on most issues, but I appreciate her resilience and I respect her commitment to try to better our fellow Americans lives, even as I think she’s running the wrong way down the field. I know it might sound confusing, but such is life. And so unsurprisingly, to me, Boxer comported herself on Handler’s show with a calm display of cogent class and the wisdom of her life experience, truly a woman of her years.
Of course, as I can still feel that way about a Liberal Democrat, now I have to wonder if Chelsea has ever felt that way and/or said recently and explicitly that about a Conservative Republican?
As I watched Chelsea start to cry on her show, perhaps I should wonder not, as she unspooled in a most un-Chelsea Lately way. Or just in a way that a smart, tough chick should know is very unbecoming for the woman we, or at least me, thought she was.
Yet there she was, looking like she just got spanked.
“I know for a woman, as a woman, it feels so sexist, and I think, I guess the message I want to spread out to other women is, is exactly what you’re saying, not to give up, [as she wept and fanned herself like Scarlett O’Hara on Terra as the Confederacy collapsed] sorry, I hate fucking crying on camera, is not to give up because this is so important, because it is so easy to say throw in the towel and that we’re gonna leave, or I want to move to Spain, because I want to move to Spain. I really, really want to move to Spain right now.”
And Sen. Boxer, to her credit, remained rather stoic during Handler’s pathetic bawling, clearly if silently looking at the unexpected amateur sitting across from her, as Chelsea continued “And everyone in my office is like you have a responsibility and you have a voice and you need to use it, and you have to be here.”
Wow. Alright then. That settles that, cancel your one-way American Airlines ticket out of town.
Boxer started clapping with the crowd but the distant look on her face projected what everyone outside of that audience was thinking: “So you threatened to leave the country if America elected Trump. You vowed to go, Chelsea, when the rolling polls called Hillary as much as 12 points up, but then Trump won and suddenly that multi-million dollar kickball you swore you’d march off the playground with if the game didn’t break your way, well suddenly America seemed like a nicer place to stay and try again.”
Granted, I am projecting, yet it is now, unfortunately, informed speculation.
And how convenient it was that Chelsea’s staff convinced her to stay here in the homeland, yet one more of the Hollywood jihadi, raising her victim banner and eager to dedicate her show to the fatwa against Trump and the America that elected him, to urge college students across the nation to don ideological martyrdom vests and explode themselves in shrieking seizures all over campuses that mask $50,000-a-year wombs.
Well, I’m just saying, it’s a drag. She seemed like such a cool chick.
I guess I expected to tune in to find Chelsea with that bottle of Blue Label Stolichnaya, pouring doubles for her and Sen. Boxer, lighting a smoke and leaning back into her chair to announce something like “Well I don’t know about you, Hillary voters, but I feel like I just got fucked. Royally. In which case, let’s put on some Marvin Gaye, I’m thinking ‘What’s Goin’ On?’, let’s drink for a week and then drunk dial Trump’s America and tell them ‘We love you baby, what happened? Please come home!’ and then let’s start looking at 2018.”
Are you there, Chelsea? It’s me, vodka.
Get back in the Pinto and get the hell out of Hollywood for awhile.
From riches held on layaway at birth to VIP seating at Denny’s, the benefits of whiteness in America are apparently endless and yet somehow only visible to a select group of academics and activists
Mark Cromer mulls over America’s secret menu for white people
[Author’s Note: First published more than three years ago, the cultish psychobabble leveled as an indictment of white Americans has continued apace, and thus this reflection seems as appropriate as ever.]
In Philadelphia last Sunday, the 17th annual White Privilege Conference wrapped up its conclave on a surreal-if-hilarious note: activists and academics bemoaned that the conference itself had become not only too white, but had buckled under the burden of discovering that ‘white supremacy’ had become pervasive in virtually every corner of the conference.
Exhibit A: When a white woman at the conference asked a black woman at the conference if she would shut the door behind her, alert cultural guards sprang into action across social media to decry “another example of #WPCsowhite @Got_Privilege.”
Exhibit B: When a white speaker went over his allotted time—albeit in a long apology for the evils of white people—he was informed his willingness to exceed the time he was given was a glaring example of his commitment to white supremacy. It didn’t matter whether he consciously spoke a little long, nor his intent, only that he did. His attempts to apologize were cited as only further examples of his racism.
Yes, there are people who actually think and speak and act like this—and they can be found counting white people attending ‘white privilege’ conferences and monitoring their every gesture and utterance. And in the event they were overcome by so many anti-whiteness white people, the White Privilege Conference had identity crisis counselors on standby: “[The WPC] can stir a range of emotions during one’s participation…if you are feeling confused, upset or distressed, the United to End Racism delegation may be able to help.”
And thus the ‘activists of color’ squared off with their white liberal ‘allies’ in what had to have been a priceless sadomasochistic dungeon game—with white ‘Racial Justice warriors’ figuratively cowering in front of the dog bowls prepared for them as they were force-fed their own self-loathing psychobabble and collectively moaning ‘Thank you, Dear Marginalized Person, may we have another?’
Meanwhile, the other 197 million white Americans were doing what most working Americans of every shade have always done in their day-to-day: went on living their lives.
And nothing enrages those academics and activists more than the thought that white Americans aren’t just going about their daily lives unimpeded by a smothering sense of collective shame, burden and guilt; but that they actually might be enjoying life. As they see it, even relatively happy white people is a big part of the problem. In this age when anger is all the rage, white people appear to be not only still too content, but too disconnected from the churning and burning that smolders across the streets of what they characterize as ‘oppressed and marginalized peoples of color.’
These professors, activists and organizers reflect behavior patterns that could be clinically diagnosed as Paranoid Schizophrenic: living in a state of constant grievance, convinced the world around them is plotting against them, or worse, ignoring them. They are obsessed with delusional claims against their ‘enemies’ while bestowing upon themselves grandiose notions of ‘[Fill In The Blank] Justice Warriors.’
It’s a tragic comedy.
There was once an era in the American academy and other arenas of intellectual discourse when reasoned discussion and vigorous debate could be had on critical issues of cultural relevance, including race, but those days have long since passed and been supplanted by a New McCarthyism that demands whites not only surrender to its every posited position on their collective guilt, but demands their proactive submission to it.
It’s no longer enough for whites to politely listen to people call them ‘racists’ before disagreeing and defending themselves or, God forbid, offer a retort that calls out another racial group for their own race-related transgressions. No, and it is no longer enough for whites to sit silently and just take it either.
Now whites are expected to invite a dressing down, accept it, agree with it—and then ask for more.
Robin DiAngelo, a white Seattle-based consultant that for more than two decades has made her career as a professional ‘consultant and trainer’ that companies hire to lead sensitivity workshops that help white employees understand that they are bigots, offered a black-letter template of how peoples of color should approach her when calling her a racist:
“Racism is the norm rather than an aberration. Feedback is key to our ability to recognize and repair our inevitable and often unaware collusion. In recognition of this, I follow these guidelines: 1) Where and when you give me feedback is irrelevant—it is the feedback I want and need. Understanding that it is hard to give, I will take it any way I can get it. From my position of social, cultural and institutional white power and privilege, I am perfectly safe and can handle it. If I cannot handle it, it’s on me to build my racial stamina. 2) Thank you. (The above guidelines rest on the understanding that there is no face to save and the jig is up; I know that I have blind spots and unconscious investments in white superiority.)”
Yes, there are people that actually speak like that—and like DiAngelo, most of them have spent decades surrounded by fellow travelers that are always ready to solemnly drop their heads, raise their clenched fists and then break into whatever group loyalty oath is required at the moment.
They see, hear and experience racism everywhere. The ‘Red Scare’ of the 1950s has become the ‘White Scare’ of the Millennial Generation.
Disagreeing is ignorance. Objecting is oppression. Dissenting is hate.
The industry surrounding the Wicker Man of White Privilege is now big money, with more than a few of its captains pulling in plush six-figure annual incomes by lecturing students and employees that are forced to listen to them hold forth on the evils of a racially-rigged system—of which wage inequality is a hallmark, a fact clearly lost on them. But to challenge their own profiteering of racial grievance would be, well, racist.
Indeed, Dr. DiAngelo, PhD, is also a tenured professor at Westfield State University in Massachusetts, where tax dollars fund her ‘research’ into “explicating how Whiteness is reproduced in everyday narratives.” She and her fellow travelers in academia continue to work on chemotherapy treatments to drive into remission if not eradication the cancer they’ve identified as white America; even as the vast population of white America continues on with their lives undeterred.
From the vantage point of the WPC in Philadelphia in April 2016, the prognosis of America remains grim, as from the Ozarks to Oahu white people continue to enjoy each others company and engage in pastimes that don’t revolve around obsessing over what’s happening in South Chicago or Baltimore or anyplace else whites left decades ago.
They seethe at the prospect that whites are talking amongst themselves about things that don’t involve hashtags that end in ‘#…sowhite.’
The fact that the vast majority of black folks, Latinos and Asians in the rich mosaic of America are also living lives that don’t revolve around obsessive-compulsive indictments of other racial groups is also very troubling to the WPC’s ideological compliance squads, but that fact doesn’t provoke the same bitter animus that happy white people ignites in them.
So in light of this and in advance of the WPC’s 2017 Pow Wow (to culturally appropriate a Native American term), a few suggested topics for their schedule of panels and workshops:
Denny’s and In-n-Out: White America’s Festungs: One eatery built an empire by serving breakfast 24-hours-a-day, the other by serving amazing burgers, fries and shakes with cryptic Christian numerology hidden on their cups—urban white colonialism at its most insidious. Breakout workshops could include discussions on how to confront the threat and while Denny’s has to be destroyed outright, a workshop on the fate of In-n-Out should include potential strategies to get the white family owned chain to apologize and convert their operations to Roscoe’s Chicken & Waffles. (Note: Olive Garden and Applebee’s will have to wait until 2018’s conference.)
The Beach Boys: A California Klan: A look back at a musical legacy of white supremacy not seen since Andy Williams crooned ‘Moon River,’ a panel session on the lingering threat posed by the five Pendleton-clad young white men from Torrance, California, who sang about girls, cars and good times with all the aplomb of a genocidal choir. A breakout workshop should deal with bands of color that have been influenced by them and other white bands of the period, with a special focus on Los Lobos, the quintessential East LA band whose jangling guitars, bass runs and harmonies are infused with the Byrds and Buffalo Springfield, two other dangerously Anglo bands of note.
The Gap: With more than 2,500 stores nationally where white America continues to enjoy shopping, a panel discussion on what draws Anglos to this clothier and how best to destroy it, including a concerted effort to force the chain to hire greeters of color and cashiers of color to remind white folks on their way into and out of the store that they are oppressive racist pigs.
The National Hockey League: A century of white ice can’t be left unanswered, yet just how to defrost it remains unclear and affirmative action may have the tragic unintended consequence of allowing the white supremacist power structure to integrate the NBA. Panelists should address a media messaging campaign that draws increased scrutiny to a ‘sport’ where white men with sticks chase and strike something black.
James Bond: The penultimate of understated white cool (admittedly a contradiction of terms for the WPC), white supremacists Sean Connery, George Lanzby, Roger Moore, Timothy Dalton, Pierce Brosnan and now Daniel Craig (albeit a Jewish white supremacist) have all carried Ian Fleming’s torch of white imperialism on the big screen for more than a half-century. Panelists will discuss the best way forward to turn white to black, with a special emphasis on how Marvel Comics was pressured into elevating the dosage of melanin in characters such as S.H.IE.L.D.’s Nick Fury and the Fantastic Four’s Johnny Storm. Director J.J. Abrams to lead the discussion.
The Tonight Show: Another regrettable historic roster of white males broadcast five days-a-week that result in white America (and too many marginalized peoples of color) not only feeling comfortable on their couches, but affording them a few chuckles to boot. From Steve Allen to Jimmy Fallon, NBC has aired more than 11,400 white power rallies since 1954, when that white golfer ‘Ike’ was in the ‘White House.’ Breakout sessions should include a reconsideration of whether the poisoning of Johnny Carson would have been morally justifiable.
Dead Presidents: Alexander Hamilton may not have dodged Aaron Burr’s bullet, but he apparently will survive the best efforts to blow him off the ten spot. Sellouts posing as racial justice activists will satisfy themselves that Andrew Jackson’s semi-replacement by Harriet Tubman on the twenty dollar bill will somehow suffice as a reasoned and proper step of inclusiveness. In doing so, they only appease the white oppressor by suggesting inclusiveness is somehow the point. It’s not. Erasure of whiteness is the point. Accordingly, panelists will take up the issue that if dead white presidents must continue to be featured on currency is there not a more appropriate manner to present them? Ulysses S. Grant on the fifty dollar bill, by example, could be depicted face down in his own stomach stew, as he was a well known alcoholic. Breakout workshops can focus on Ben Franklin’s whoremonger days among the Parisian elite, with careful attention given to the prospect this may only make him more popular.
White People Calculators: Not made by Texas Instruments, but rather produced from the fermenting bowels of the American academy, WPC 2017 should further coordinate young racial justice activists to fan out across the nation and count white people at any and every event and locale. A heavy metal concert? Why so white? (Workshop on what happened to Living Colour and was Corey Glover only posing as black?) White people sans sunscreen on the beach? Are they trying to pass?! WTF! The social media universe beckons for virtually any place or thing that is #…sowhite.
And so are but a few suggestions for upcoming panels at the White Privilege Conference in 2017 as the arbiters of racial correctness gaze down upon the target-rich environment that is nearly 200 million white Americans doing what they’ve always done—getting on with their lives and doing the best they can.