It’s Not Us, It’s You

In 2000 I was living in Virginia and not terribly interested in the upcoming election. The reason was twofold. I was not a big fan of Bush and all of the down ticket candidates were uninteresting, but harmless. I think my state rep had been in office for decades and was running unopposed, because no one had a reason to throw him out. He was harmless and sensible, a rare thing in politics.

Even so, I went off the morning of the election to my polling place and I was surprised to see a line. It was one of those times when you suddenly realize you’re wrong about things. Clearly, people were not like me and indifferent to the election. They were engaged, because they thought it was important. Bush won Virginia, but not as handily as one would have expected.

What came next was eight years of Progressive crazies screaming at us that Bush was a mix of Hitler and Satan. On the other side were conservative media defending everything Bush said and did, even the stuff that was contrary to conservative dogma, which was most of it. It was in the Bush years that “conservative” lost all meaning and became a brand label to sell the GOP, as well as ties, coffee mugs and so forth.

Part of the reason Donald Trump has risen to the top of the GOP field is he has largely run against conservative media. It has been an article of faith among media conservatives that the public hated the liberal media. Michelle Malkin has said “lame-stream media” so many times it could be her nickname. Much of what Fox News and talk radio do everyday is rail about the liberal media, seeing that as red meat to their fans.

It turns out that the public actually has grown to hate all political media equally. It’s why the screaming about Trump has backfired. The conservative public has been doing a slow burn for eight years over the Bush debacle. They feel they were sold a pig in a poke. The people selling it were the folks in conservative media, who tried peddling Mitt Romney four years ago. They were ready to sell Jeb Bush this time.

It appears that conservative media may be slowly figuring it out as we see in this article by the neo-con pundit John Podhoretz. He can’t bring himself the admit the invade the world/invite the world ideology of his people is the real problem, but he does inch toward blaming Bush for the current ructions. Now that Hari Seldon’s top lieutenant has said it is OK, I suspect others will begin to plow this ground over the summer.

The gist of the Podhoretz article is that the bank collapse and mortgage meltdown still haunt the GOP because no one was ever brought to account for it. Instead, Republicans blamed Clinton and Democrats blamed greedy bankers, who were never charged. Instead, they were bailed out with borrowed Chinese money. The argument is that this “revolt” of the Dirt People is a delayed response to this.

Well, that’s some of it, but the 2008 nonsense was part of a larger trend we have seen for decades. In the 80’s, many people went to jail over the S&L Crisis. In 2000 hardly anyone went to jail for the dot-com scam and the accounting scandals. People have been watching the rich and powerful avoid the law for a long time now so the mortgage collapse was just part of the larger mosaic.

The bigger issue is that conservatives were told for generations that the only way to roll back the welfare state and restore order was to get control of Congress. That happened for the first time in 50 years when the GOP won the House in 94. They did some good things and slowed spending considerably, but Clinton was still in the White House so rollback was off the table.

That was the argument for Bush from conservative media in 2000. Bush with a GOP House and Senate could pass real reform and big parts of the conservative agenda. Instead, we got wars of choice that staggered on endlessly and a massive expansion of government not seen since LBJ. To top it off, we got the start of the security state in the form of the Department of Homeland Security.

This crap was sold and defended by conservative media for eight years. The warmongering has been defended throughout the Obama years. All the big-shots in conservative media were preparing to sell the voters on Jeb Bush until the Dirt Monster showed up and busted up the party. It’s why the screaming and hooting from conservative media has fallen on deaf ears. No one believes them anymore.

To add insult to injury, the surge of Trump has been cast as racist and prol by the pajama-clad social justice warriors of conservative media. If you are a rank and file conservative, you can’t help but wonder if conservative media is just a big scam run by the DNC. Browse through National Review and you can only assume it is a well coordinated and financed attack on the voters.

People who work with numbers have an old gag, “quantity has a quality of its own.” That’s what’s happening to conservative media. They can be clever and smart and have access to the best media tools. That’s not much use when 99% of the people no longer believe them. Unless and until conservative media comes to terms with the fact they are on the wrong side of their customers, their star will continue to fade.

45 thoughts on “It’s Not Us, It’s You

  1. “Instead, Republicans blamed Clinton and Democrats blamed greedy bankers, who were never charged. Instead, they were bailed out with borrowed Chinese money.”

    The CRA is owned by Bill Clinton. Then the Chinese decided to collateralize their loans and we did. Check that out.

    “Bush with a GOP House and Senate could pass real reform and big parts of the conservative agenda. ”

    We got that and got bupkis of what was promised. In ’10 they said give us the House and we will fight the Prog-Monsters. Bupkis. Then they ran McSame. (Yawn) In ’12 we got Romney which was coma inducing. In ’14 they said we need both houses of Congress and we shall do all the wonderful things we have promised = immigration (close the borders), roll back spending and repeal Obamacare, etc. We gave it to them. Cornyn here in Texas made a big campaign promise of repeal Obamacare. What did we get? Less than bupkis, we got scrod. Well and truly scrod. In fact the eGoP Congress gave Obama all of what he wanted. Took them less than 6 weeks to beat us again and start calling us names.

    Think of Trump as our murder weapon for the eGoP. How could he be worse?

    Oh, and Kristol is not Hari Seldon. Not even close.

    I am R Daneel Olivaw.

  2. Your post is exactly touching the subject of the current Trump appeal by voters who feel as though they don’t count nor do they have a voice ever. Every time elections roll around – politicians come along promising and lying to win only to betray their voters again.
    It is time that America gets its mojo back – sold out by both parties to the global elites and their interest contrary to that of American voters and citizens. The ‘silent’ majority is done with them – enough is enough!
    The current attacks on Trump coming from both parties establishments, the special interests, Wall Street, K Street, Chamber of Commerce, CFR and donors speaks for itself. They plot and scheme behind the scene using the corporate media – incl Fox – to assists them. It’s all so predictable and more so by the day! Who cares what they all have to say – its us or them and I want to end my comment with your post titled “It’s not us – it’s You”! Nothing else needs to be said!

  3. If one equates Fox with MSNBC or the Washington Times with the NY Times, then what is the use of listening to anything you have to say? Clearly in your mind Reagan is the same as Obama.

  4. Thanks for the link to the link the the podohertz article, Z.

    It’s kind of like reading Baghdad Bob if he’d had a better vocabulary and was a little more in touch with American current events.

    What a dog’s breakfast of convoluted reasoning and self delusion that editorial is. And he and his buddies are probably all sitting around telling each other what a brilliant piece of work it was. I’m guessing that the Ceucesus had similar conversations while they were on the lam.

    • You’ve probably seen it, but Belmont Club had the video of Ceaucescu’s last speech, before he was killed. Someone noted the best part wasn’t the bland unawareness on Ceaucescu’s face as he droned on.

      The best part was the look on the faces of his bodyguards… mounting panic.

      • I probably should start reading Fernandez. I’ve never read much of PJ Media simply because it just looks like low-brow flag waving. “Red Team! Yeah Wooohh!” Looking at the Fernandez section, maybe he’s an exception.

        • Fernandez -Belmont Club- is exceptionaly good, as is Victor Hanson. Spengler is also, although his older work at Asia Times is even better.

        • Fernandez is very interesting because he is of the dirt people and gets it. He over reaches with his analogies sometimes, but don’t we all as we try to understand the current mess. Overall a brilliant essayist and thinker.

          VDH is also of the dirt people and has become the chronicler of their extinction in central CA as agribusiness continues to consolidate family farms into corporate latifundia and import ever more low skill immigrants to run them. Less a strategic thinker, more a once in a generation observer of current events with diamond hard insights to accompany his chronicles.

          I find Goldman the most troublesome. In some of his early Asia Times pieces, he took a “FU dirt people” stance. Some of his recent work has been more conciliatory, but within the last two years, he was chiding the dirt people for not investing in STEM education for their kids while promoting more H1B visas in the same essay. He is brilliant smart and insightful, but in a pinch, my gut tells me he would side with the cloud people: that’s been his professional and personal background and I don’t see him abandoning it.

        • Instapundit, Glenn Reynolds appears as a dirt person as well, despite his his Yale Law background. He dishes on the phony-baloney Repubs as much as anyone and skewers their hypocrisy more often that most.

        • I read PJ Media for Fernandez and the others already noted, but also to scan the neocon propaganda. The site is undoubtedly neocon heavy, but what is interesting is that the readers are very clearly not, which can make the comment section amusing. The propagandist have been pounded of late.

          American Thinker is not generally neocon, although they have some of those critters, and the level of writers often demands ignoring, but that is how I read most sites. It’s easy enough to do, and patience has been rewarded.

        • PJ is unreadable now once they changed their format. The Belmont Club stayed the same though.

    • It’s hard to know, but it feels like these people have slipped into a delusional fantasy world. Maybe I’m the one in the rabbit hole and they are the sane ones, but little they say squares with daily reality. Read NRO and it is like stepping into an alternative universe.

      • Too mnay NRO types were angling for fat sinecures in the Jeb! administration. Their frustrations are boiling over!

  5. “If you are a rank and file conservative, you can’t help but wonder if conservative media is just a big scam run by the DNC.”

    There is only one question for the elite: “Its good for the J***?”

  6. I voted for him twice, but I can never forgive GW Bush for saying that Islam is a religion of peace. Or for letting the banksters in effect steal taxpayer money to cover their losses. Or for expanding government. I could go on, but why bother. Obama continued the downward trajectory.

    • I agree. My own mother lost almost $400,000.00 in that bail out. It was enough to break my heart and feel honest to goodness murderous rage. Had she not had a high-paying job and been a savvy saver for all those years, she would’ve been living with me. It’s enough to blacken your heart.

    • How about hating on Dubya for the Homeland Security Act? As unconstitutional a piece of worthless craplegislation as ever existed! That;’s the real tragedy. Of course he wasn’t going to disparage his Wahhabist friends and family partners from the House of Saud. After all, they were all given a free pass out of the country after 9-11!

  7. You can only p** on the electorate’s leg so long while trying to convince them “it’s raining”. Politics isn’t much different from what I’ve seen over more than three decades in the financial industry. You watch firms rot out from within, but the rot is gradual and everyone is still getting paid, so why rock the boat by pointing out the planking has gone spongy? Then a series of events, generally ones that all the “smart guys” thought would never correlate happen, and bingo…a Black Swan.. Didn’t start out a Trump fan, but also believe almost every person in the chattering class badly underestimated him because they bought into the caricature rather than taking the time understand what it takes to survive decades in the real estate development business.

    • You nailed it here, Brew meister ! I’ve been saying all along that the political experience one gains from even a single real estate development in a place like NYC, is worth a hundred years political experience in some rinky-dink State House or the Congress of the US as constituted today! Far too many of this current crop of politicos are merely extensions of their HS student council experiences; phoney-baloney, plastic banana, good time Charlies, all!!!

  8. Trump has the balls to not only punch the bullies (i.e., the progressive/media/Hollywood/academic juggernaut) in the nose, but to spit on them when they’re down and bleeding. The dirt people love him for this, as they can’t do it themselves for fear of having their hearts ripped out by the
    leftist mob. Go Donald!

  9. Zman, you hit a lot of the high points but missed the biggest and most recent one: the Republican Party, when given control of the House AND Senate, simply became Obama’s rubber-stamp political organ. When the Republican leadership openly allied with the democrats in order to pass Obama’s budget– and did so with more democrat votes than republican votes!– and furthermore had the nerve to think that nobody would notice, well, that’s when the republican electorate finally snapped.

  10. “If you are a rank and file conservative, you can’t help but wonder if conservative media is just a big scam run by the DNC.” This is why I talk about caesarism a lot, and I’m not really kidding. We “vote,” but if we “vote” the wrong way, well, that was a practice… now get out there and vote the right way (see also “everything the EU has done,” including Ireland’s vote on whether or not to be a member of the EU). Bill Kristol et al have openly declared that they’d rather lose than win the wrong way, which means the terms “win” and “lose” no longer mean anything anyone outside the ACELA corridor would recognize. It works, because it’s cheaper than a police state (and the optics are better)… but the Principate became the Dominate eventually, as it must. We’re rapidly nearing that point, I’m afraid.

  11. I see Donald J Trump signifies a number of things.
    Rise of the Dirt People. Grass roots baby! Just a little more preference cascade, just a little more determined plurality, a sea change takes place and it won’t matter if Trump is elected or not. It’s on like Donkey Kong. If you got a lick of common sense, you know in your bones this is the last opportunity of peaceful recourse towards some sane semblance of the intended Republic instead of an organized crime syndicate aka banana republic. If you ignore the reality there is no voting our way out of this your gonna be really sorry you kept your head up your arse when the signs where staring you in the face. Sucks to be you. Your gonna be behind the steep learning curve ahead.
    The Pavlov Republican’s aren’t even waiting till after the elections to return to their vomit, they are lapping it up fresh steaming and chunky and gagging on it now. Rinse-Repeat. The GOPe is a headless chicken that hasn’t figured that out. Talk about behind the curve.

    A third dynamic is hard to define, but I think LBJ’s political philosophy explain part of it.
    It is an old yarn about while he was running for some mid-level state position early in his career, close to election day, he told his workers to spread the word that his opponent had carnal relations with barnyard animals.
    They said, “we can’t call him a pig-fucker, it ain’t proveable”.   LBJ said “I don’t care, I just want to hear him deny it in public.”   LBJ won.
    Sound like the strategy of Trump? Yes and No.
    LBJ was a consummate corrupt dirty lying ass politician. A crook and tyrant. The difference here is Trump is using the same tactic’s, but they are predicated on using the revolutionary idea that in a time of universal deciet the truth no matter how outrageous is an extremely potent weapon, almost as powerful a weapon as withdrawal of consent.
    Which in this case the two are almost inextricably intertwined.
    A war of the truth and consent verses lies and tyranny.
    The truth and consent is how the dirt people roll.
    It is snowballing.

    • There is also the theory of 80 year cycles in politics and culture. Current cycle is in the terminal phase.

    • LBJ was a anti-American criminal, the JFK assassination and the israeli attack on the USS Liberty have his dirty fingerprints.

  12. There is no way on god’s green Earth that the “conservative” media or establishment ever regain the trust of their base. They are done and dead. A new party is aborning; that’s the future. The GOP is just a husk, an incubation chamber, soon to be discarded.

    • I woke up to “conservative” media about 10 years ago when Allahpundit banned me from Hot Air for stating that the BMP probably wasn’t as bad as made out to be and a whole lot better than Islamification of Britain. The people who continue to believe “conservative” media are no-kidding crazy Boomers or late GenXers or strivers like Sasse. Crazy Boomers continue to assault me with how Trump is NOT PRESIDENTIAL MATERIAL and these people will eventually die bit there’s no fixing them. Thus, “conservative” media may limp along another 10 years.

      • I always thought conservative’s were for smaller government.
        When Bush II became president we got more government.
        That’s when I knew the R’s were in it for power and money.
        I want Trump to burn it down.
        I want American’s to rebuild what was.

  13. “The gist of the Podhoretz article is that the bank collapse and mortgage meltdown still haunt the GOP because no one was ever brought to account for it.”

    “ People have been watching the rich and powerful avoid the law for a long time now so the mortgage collapse was just part of the larger mosaic.”

    Indeed.
    Hank Paulson and Tim Geithner should be in jail, convicted under RICO, for the shenanigans they did to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. There has been a conspiracy for many years prior to the ’08 meltdown, to destroy and eliminate F&F; the ’08 crisis was not wasted.. they saw it as an opportunity to seize these two private-shareholder-owned companies (they are NOT government owned, nor did they have an explicit/implicit gaurantee against their losses; their securities always explicity stated they were not guarantedd by US Gov.).
    After seizing these companies they used them as a way to funnel money to the large banks, by having F&F buy crap MBS from them. In ’08, they both had plenty of cash reserves and positive cash flow, and profits; any claim to the contrary by Treasury, Paulson, Geithner, or The Whitehouse is a lie.
    The “losses” they were forced to book (by US Treasury’s demand) were fake: long-term cash-flow-positive securities were forced to be “marked to market” at a time when the market had evaporated, yet Fannie and Freddie had no need to sell them at that time, hence there was no need to mark to market.
    The US gov, through FHFA which they control, has seized all the profits, and is also seizing all the accumulated assets of F&F; the billions of dollars that the large banks paid for the fraud that they perpetuated didn’t go to F&F whom they defrauded, but instead have gone into US Treasury’ general funds.
    There are over twenty lawsuits by shareholders pending against US Treasury, FHFA, Deloitte and Touche, the Board of Directors of Fannie Mae, claiming that the seizure and gutting of these companies is a violation of the US Constitution’s Fifth Amendent prohibiting seizure without just compensation.

    More info at GSElinks.com

  14. Unlikely to happen, but now may be a good time for Trump to deliver a major speech on foreign policy.

    • It’s going to be interesting to watch Trump over the next six weeks. The primary schedule in April is heavily tilted toward his strengths, but he still has to campaign and get on TV. At the same time, the public is just about ready to forget about Cruz and Kasish. Trump needs to begin the pivot away from primary candidate to general election candidate, but he still has to campaign in order to keep the party from screwing him at the convention. We got a glimpse of Trump 2.0 in the last debate. His recent radio interviews have been must more President Trump than Candidate Trump.

      He has a speech he is giving to AIPAC so we’ll get another glimpse of Trump 2.0 I suspect. It’s going to be a difficult straddle for a while, but the guy has managed this far so there’s no reason to think he can’t make this transition.

    • curri, there is no “foreign policy” when the current and only foreign policy involves the self interest of the oligarchy and its corporate military and bankster vassals running things.
      Safe the borders, withdraw from foreign entaglements, let Europe defend themselves and fund it themselves too, put every “trade agreement” since NAFTA in front of a firing squad, dump the Saudi’s and their Wahabbist genocidal caliphate, and go back on the gold standard, eliminate the Federal Reserve, which is neither, no more federal income tax or IRS, make States Nullification of federal regulation and “law” so there is no more federal dollar carrot and a stick.
      Then the only foreign policy you need leave it to the rest of the world, or not, with the only choice but to deal economically with a free unfettered American economy based on the intrinsic value of goods and labor. Not fiat or fractional bankster self interest.

      • also-
        don’t allow Fed agencies (EPA, HUD, FEMA, etc) to usurp the power of Congress by writing regulations without having them voted on by Congress. All of these agencies are creating “law” because Congress stupidly abdicated their responsibility, and gave the agencies authority to create the regulations. This must be stopped.. all regulations should be voted on by Congress.

        • There’s something so familiar about this guy . . .

          At any rate, I like the cut of your jibe, sir.

          • I’m a coal miner from WV, I’m not sure why, but when your down in the bowels of the Earth you tend to reflect on things differently than in the light of day.
            Maybe it is your mortality or something being down there.

        • Nunnya,
          Exactly right. It is administrative tyranny your talking about. There are those who believe the US Constitution has almost from its inception evolved into an instrument of that administrative dictatorship. This class of agencies are not unlike the old Soviet Nomenklaturer Class, administrative agents who interfered in every facet of the sphere of peoples lives. Nothing was left to people to self determine. It is a system of administrative totalitarianism. This is a brilliant introduction to a guy named Gary North who wrote a sublime book on centralism. https://revisedhistory.wordpress.com/2014/11/10/if-liberty-was-the-object-why-did-they-give-us-centralism/

          The Declaration of Independence singles out these agents of tyranny as a very specific reason for rebellion and independence.
          In our case, the Amerikan Nomenklature, manipulate the rule of law of the USC to usurp its power and create “laws” out of whole cloth, diktat really, so to rule with impunity, and then on the same coin hide behind the Constitution to protect themselves from the wrath of the people.

      • Although everything you’ve stated is spot on, if you’ve ever read up on the history of our past presidents trying to do away with the Fed, (Central Bank), you’d see that it’s quite deadly. We would have to have a seriously bloody revolt to kick out the Fed. The IRS ain’t goin’ nowhere, either; there’s a reason its employees are well over 50% black Americans. Any country that has attempted to revert back to the gold standard found their leaders either taking permanent dirt naps, or sunk into suspicious wars with countries that were once friendly.

        • My friend, Resistance is never futile, remember, the truth has no agenda.
          Our liberty and freedom is not contingent on past history nor man made laws, or what an oligarchy will or will not permit. It is up to us as individuals, and that is the first thing, because it all begins with each of us. It is contingent on us as a culture to become manifest, define the limits of tyrants and their tyranny, because simply, culture is upstream of politics. It is the motive power of culture which you are witnessing in action right now, it is overcoming and eclipsing the political landscape. It is extremely powerful. It is resistance. It is by no means not futile. And the motive power it is gathering is changing everything, because it is now in control. It can’t be stopped once a plurality of determined people choose not to submit. It is why the political class is loosing its mind, the reason it has lost control. What we think of Trump is secondary, Trump and the other candidates have become secondary. Our culture, it is ascendent. Always has been. It is the motive power of liberty and self determination.
          We weren’t handed a republic, we where handed a legacy to fulfill. It’s a destiny. These are the ebbs and flows of it, its a learning process. No society or culture has ever been involved in such action. Tyranny’s been around a lot longer, way longer than actual liberty. We still have a ways to go. Look at it this way, think of it in terms of the wealth and energy consumed by despots and their oligarchy to deny people and suppress them of their primal freedoms. Think of the enormity of the federal Leviathan and the scope of the Nomenklaturer class which does it’s bidding. And it still can not stop freedom, eliminate liberty.
          It is a pretty darn incredible truth right there.
          Liberty works because it is the idea the glass is always half full and rising.

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