A Coming Realignment in American Politics?

A couple of months ago, @Old_Dog posted the following short missive:

In case you haven’t noticed, the Democrats and Republicans are both in the midst of an INTERNAL civil war. Establishment Ds versus Radical Ds; Establishment R’s versus Trump’s Rs. It’s going to take a few years for the dust to settle but one way or another both parties are realigning.

It got buried in discussions about other things on that thread, but I thought it was such an important issue, that I decided to give it a thread of its own.

I won’t add anything to it, because that would make this post longer than it should optimally be, and I don’t want to mar my reputation for making brief, pithy, to-the-point posts.

But I would be grateful for the comments of others.

So will you be voting for the My Pillow guy?

I would vote for him before I would vote for Biden, Pelosi and Schumer. Biden is a puppet and a liar; the other two are haters.

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I don’t know what the ‘My Pillow’ guy believes in politically.
However, here are some Democrats – or people who are Democrats at the moment – whom I would vote for in a flash.

Major Tulsi Gabbard. [ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tulsi_Gabbard ] Good sense with respect to the PC insanity, and hits all the right notes for the race- and gender-obsessed.

Jim Webb.[ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jim_Webb ] Ex-Republican, and a very senior one too; opposed the invasion of Iraq. Novelist. Did some things in Vietnam that got him the Navy Cross, a Silver Star, Bronze Stars, Purple Hearts — so he’s another Democrat who knows what he’s talking about when it comes to war. And not someone who despises white rednecks and hillbillies, they being his ancestors:[https://www.amazon.com/Born-Fighting-Scots-Irish-Shaped-America/dp/0767916891/ ]

Michael Lind [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Lind] Like Jim Webb, an ex-conservative (of the neocon flavor) and one who has written some powerful things against our side. Never mind. He’s got good sense, sees what’s happening to America, and is not afraid of speaking the truth, regardless of the leftist academic witchfinders. And a fellow Texan. Anyone reading this who hasn’t yet seen his most recent book, The New Class War, has got a treat coming if he’s a reader: [ https://www.amazon.com/New-Class-War-Democracy-Managerial/dp/0593083695/ ]

Those are three from the top of my head. There are thousands, tens of thousands more Democratic leaders at various levels, including people who just keep their mouths shut when the PC insanity is raging, but who don’t buy into it.

The objective basis for a massive realignment is there. Our side has to ignore the snotty trendy-Left kids who are just reflecting their white-middle-class privilege when they sneer at ordinary church-goers and workers who didn’t go to college, and look to the mass of Democratic voters who want a sensible welfare state, and are willing to cast off the chains of empire.

On our side, we’ve got to politely explain to our good Libertarian friends – including those who have been colonized by Libertarian ideology but who just think of themselves a rockhard conservtives – that, no, we don’t want to abolish Social Security, and no, we are not going to sell off the National Parks, and … hey … didn’t you notice when you embraced Trump and economic protectionism, that you thereby rejected the whole argument of Libertarian economics, that the pure free market always results in the best of all possible worlds?

Leon Trotsky noted that human consciousness is the most conservative of all historical factors. But the objective basis for a massive shift in American politics is there. We’ll see if the subjective can align to the objective.

Well … ahem… surely, it’s the political program that Biden, Pelosi and Schumer are pushing that’s the problem. And would still be a problem if they were utterly independent-minded truth-telling love-infused people. (And there have been some saints on the other side – look at any biography of the Socialist leader Eugene Victor Debs.)

And on the other hand, can we really put our hands on our hearts and say, with a straight face, that everyone on our side is a 100% truth-teller, and suffused with nothing but love for everyone? Surely there’s a minor exception or two?

Sometimes our side tries to use the weapons of the other side: faux indignation over something utterly trivial in someone’s past, like the ‘Governor Blackface’ business. It just legitimizes their bullshit if we take it seriously, as opposed to just pointing out the hypocrisy.

Actually, the three Democrats in question strike me as mainly just hacks, ie ordinary politicians. You have to go further down, or up, to find the real haters. And if you look at the journalism profession, and how it’s moved, fast and far, from even a pretense at objectivity … they really should be called, after Orwell, our ‘Ministry of Truth’.

As for being ‘puppets’. Maybe … but I think we should be cautious here – that was a charge the Left used a lot, with little substance, against Trump. I have no doubt that money, or the promise of it, changed hands in the case of the Bidens, the Clintons, and maybe even Trump himself. But … were they ‘honest politicians’, ie did they ‘stay bought’?

A couple of years ago the conservative (but anti-Trump) journal National Review had a hilarious make-believe phone call between Putin and Trump, allegedly recorded by the NSA just after Trump took office.

Here’s how it starts:

111016: 00:45GMT

Surveillance Transcript

Begin Extract:

Static. Buzzing.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE VOICE: Donald! I am already trying to call you since three days! To say for that I am happy about election and then it goes to voicemail and voicemail and voicemail and I am wondering presently how comes this, because for I see you tweeting. You are tweeting but not picking up when I call which confuses me. The device is the same!

POTUS-ELECT: Hey, look, it’s been crazy. I’ve been crazy busy. Stuff to read, people to hire, it’s endless. There’s stuff, let me tell you, stuff I didn’t — no one told me about, not that I’m surprised, of course, because I know what’s happening and what needs to be done. But you’re still surprised, you know? You know a thing is happening but it’s still crazy that it’s happening. And then, you know, I’m still working on my screenplay, so there’s that. Anyway. Nice to connect.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE VOICE: Not you understanding. Do not me weasel talk.

POTUS-ELECT: This isn’t that. Really. Look, I gotta be honest here, and I do not mean this to sound in any way argumentative or rude or anything because I really do believe I have a fine temperament. But see, here’s the thing, Vlad –

UNIDENTIFIED MALE VOICE: What thing? The thing for what is this?

POTUS-ELECT: It’s an expression. What I’m trying to say is that, hey, I’m president now. Things are different. Maybe when you call, I don’t know, when you call it’s a little more like you’re calling an equal here. Maybe it’s an I-call-you-back situation, when-time-permits type thing. Instead of –

UNIDENTIFIED MALE VOICE: Mouth closing! For this is not agreement part! This is not agreement part! I do what I promised. E-mails, those things and others were done with as discussed and now president you are and now is time for the back pay!

POTUS-ELECT: Back pay? Not following you. …

Read the whole thing here … you’ll be falling out of your chair laughing:

Sorry @Doug1943, but you are underestimating the damage that those three intend to do. If Schumer were not under the influence of Pelosi, who is controlled by AOC and the Squad in an effort to keep her position, you could negotiate with him. He does have a Wall Street constituency to consider.

As I said before, Pelosi is extreme and in fear of her position. She is a true hater, and the worst person in government with great power. No one could say the things that she says day after day and not believe it. She is very dangerous.

Biden is a puppet. He was the straw man the Democrats ran in place of the candidate the true believers in the party really wanted, Bernie Sanders. Sanders is unelectable as a national candidate and that’s why the Democrats have put he down twice.

Have you seen what the Democrats really want? They want end the two party system and make this into a de facto dictatorship. What do you think cancel culture and the retraining centers are all about?

P.S. I would never consider Eugene V. Debs to be “a saint.” The best I can say for him is “misguided.” Anyone who thinks that state control of every aspect of the economy is dangerous and opposed to freedom and democracy.

Yes, total socialism would have been a disaster. But Gene Debs was not an enemy of democracy, did not hate his own people, and was a good man. That’s why a self-righteous haughty man like the liberal Democrat Woodrow Wilson refused to pardon him after the war (Wilson’s government had sentenced Debs to ten years in prison for urging young men to resist the draft), and why the man liberals love to demonize, President Warren Harding (a bit of Trump, in fact) did pardon Debs, and even invited him to the White House for a chat.

It’s painfully clear that Mr Biden cannot be relied on to comprehend the complex situation he is in and then make informed decisions about what to do about it, so I desperately hope is IS a puppet of someone! More or less anyone.

We’re going down an unknown path. If all that was in our future was the sort of super-welfare state plus lots of nationalized industries conrolled by powerful industrial unions … ie what happened in Europe from about 1950 - 1980 … that would be one thing. Bad, but reversible, as all the European countries did. (And as we did, starting, actually with Jimmy Carter – another candidate for (minor) sainthood in my book – who began the deregulation of the airline industry.)

But I think we’re heading for something much worse. The European list towards socialism did not involve an attack on their own culture. Swedes weren’t told they were evil because they had tried to conquer Europe, or Danes that they had to expiate the sins of their raping-robbing Viking ancestors.

Even the Communists instilled patriotism in their people, and promoted virtuous behavior, in their own way, among their young people. (Okay, you were supposed to inform on Mommy and Daddy if they expressed deviant thoughts, so in that respect they were like today’s Left, but basically, you could have transferred the ‘personal behavior rules’ of the Young Pioneers to the Boy Scouts and vice versa without many changes. Those people weren’t fools: they didn’t want to wreck the societies they had taken over. But, yes, there was Pavel Morozov: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pavlik_Morozov )

And as we descend into the darkness, the old hacks who run the Democratic Party, go along with it. But I don’t think they know what they’re doing. They’re hoping if they throw a few bones – us – to the raging radicals of the PC Left, that they’ll be spared.

I see it like the golden years in Europe before World War I. There were a few people who were worried about a serious war between the Great Powers, although generally the mood was optimistic and with good reason: things were getting better every year.

The pessimistics turned out to be right, far more right than even they had predicted, since the huge scale of the killing and destruction was really unprecedented, and had a profound effect on the worldview of the intelligentsia afterwards, softening them up to support fascism and/or communism.

But no one predicted the latter. No one predicted the emergence of totalitarianism. It was something new in the world.

Similarly with Islamism. Before 1979, radical Islam as a powerful mass movement, capable of running a state as in Iran … was not predicted, at least not by anyone I’m familiar with.

I think we’re moving into something like that now, something new in the world. I don’t know what rough beast, its hour come round at last, slouches towards Bethlehem to be born, but we’d better try to destroy it while we can.

Who needs to slobber over a flag all day to be happy and run a good government?

Why would Republicans vote if they think the elections are all rigged against them?
Because they know they really aren’t.

No doubt if the entire world were like you – utterly pure and kind and intelligent – then states (by here I mean the permanent parts of government, and in particular the armed bodies of men that underpin every state) – would not be necessary. We would all be happy and have ‘good government’.

Everyone would be kind and generous and caring and sharing.

But the world isn’t like that. George Orwell – a courageous socialist – is often quoted – how accurately is questionable [https://checkyourfact.com/2019/08/09/george-orwell-rough-men/], but it’s absolutely in his spirit – as noting that,
"“People sleep peacefully in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.”

Now those “rough men” – mainly the sons of people you would sneer at as uneducated deplorables – guard you in your sleep for a variety of reasons. It’s a paycheck, after all.

But in the crunch – when it comes to crawling up Omaha Beach under German machine-gun fire – it’s not for the paycheck. It’s for an idea, an ideal in fact. And ideals need symbols. The flag is a symbol.

If symbols were just meaningless, why would your friends on the Left burn the flag? If they want to burn a piece of cloth, a dishcloth would be cheaper.

If symbols were just meaningless, then you and your friends wouldn’t be triggered by the sight of a Confederate Flag.

You wouldn’t freak out if someone joined a party you were at, wearing a swastika. It’s just a symbol after all, with no inherent meaning. (In fact, in India in the past it was a symbol for health and prosperity.)

Symbols are a way that human beings convey meaning. Simples.

You sneer at the American flag, not because you don’t understand this obvious fact, but because you have been taught to despise what it stands for.

But you’re here, living in freedom, because others were willing to die for what the American flag, in their minds, stood for.

Here’s something you can have a good laugh at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y83REbEBD8o&t=193s

Others don’t despise it. As here:

so Jessop’s speech in “a few good men” went right over your head

Not sure of your point here. Maybe it did. I recall that movie as one of Hollywood’s attempts to subtly spread contempt for the armed forces, despite the presence of ‘Good Marines’ in that film.

The Lingering Appeal Of Col Jessup’s Courtroom Tirade In ‘A Few Good Men’ (taskandpurpose.com)

Interesting, thanks for the link. Although I am signed up to Task & Purpose I 've never seen that particular entry.

But … having read it … I don’t disagree with it. I would have assumed your attitude would be, simply, to condemn Jessup – all that silly stuff about honor, etc.

The reality is, there are very few pure people, pure struggles. Read in any depth about ‘uprisings of the oppressed’ – the Peasant Revolt in the 14th Century, the revolt of the Haitian slaves against the French, of Nat Turner’s uprising (one of several in the US), of the Algerians against their French rulers … and you will find that the oppressed were not gentlemen: they raped women and slaughtered children. We can discuss why, but that’s the reality.

And so with the people who have fought on our side in our wars. We call WWII ‘the Good War’, but Americans committed war crimes in all theatres there … and I’m not talking about area bombing of German cities or the nuking of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, but crimes that the military itself recognized as crimes. And of course there is My Lai.

So? Although we should condemn the crimes committed by our side, the reality is, these things will happen, and the people sitting comfortably at home will feel reluctant to condemn men putting their own lives on the line to protect them. Same attitude governs our response to claims of police brutality.

Sometimes justice is served by covering up an injustice.

A true story. I was involved in a voter registration project in the South in the summer of 1964. Towards the end of the project, sometime in August, there was an incident. A young woman went home early. Everyone in the project knew what had happened, but none of us talked about it, then or, to my knowledge ever, except in the most general terms as I am doing now. Why? Because if we had, at the time, let it get out – much less going to the police – it would have been headline news among the white racists who would have been overcome with joy to have learned about what happened. So we covered it up then and we still do.

There are things which are done, and not said. There are things which are said, and not done. And there are things everyone knows about, but which no one talks about.

As the article states, the world is complicated and can’t be condensed into the silliness of Maga culture.

Yes, she is a genuine Democrat, not a secret conservative plant.
But we will have to find ways to ally with genuine Democrats, on issues where we agree. We might even have to make those alliances within a common political party. This doesn’t mean we have to agree with all of our allies’ political positions, or vice versa.

The most important issue we face today is what to do about our position in the world in general, and about a rising China in particular. Major Gabbard has a very good understanding of the insanity of meddling in Third World snakepits. In this she reflects the view of millions of ordinary working class Democrats, and runs squarely up against the bi-partisan Washington foreign policy consensus, which is why Hillary hates her.

She is also not at all Politically Correct, which is, more and more, a split issue within the Democratic Party.

Furthermore, peoples’ political positions are not set in stone. We should see if we can move her away from some of the worst positions she has – now that she is not representing her presumably very liberal Hawaian base, she might be open to a re-think, over time.

After all, I know of a guy who was a Democrat, hung out with Democrats, donated money to Democrats … and then changed.
Why did he do this? I don’t know for sure … here’s one line of speculation: https://www.patheos.com/blogs/felixculpa/2020/02/when-trump-was-a-democrat.html

But I would definitely want to see if Major Gabbard could have the same thing happen to her. I doubt it will … but if the Gabbards, the Webbs, people like Michael Lind end up splitting with the hard Left in their own party … i want our side to hold out the hand of friendship and offer to talk.

And Trump was wrong about the effects. We didn’t get companies reshoring, we got companies setting up shop in other countries to avoid the tariffs.

You can argue “political effects” – “We’re trying to punish China”, but that’s different from saying this has economic merit.

Equally, the trade war had a domestic political cost because of the economic fallout:

Or “woke” culture.

Or maybe they know there are degrees of rigging, and enough votes can offset the cheating.