Ivy Day In The Blogosphere

The first election in which I had an emotional investment was the 1976 presidential election. I was only ten years old, but we were Democrats so I got to vote anyway. In fact, I voted several times that day, along with all of my dead relatives and their dead friends. I’m kidding, of course, but it was the first time I cared about an election. I grew up in a Democrat family, but some family members were breaking ranks with the party and that made for some ugly conversations at Sunday dinner.

Despite my Southern sensibilities, I was not a Carter fan. Even at that age, I was a bit of a contrarian. There was just something about Carter that bothered me. There was that and the fact that the hard core Nixon haters in my family were nuts. There was an aunt that always went on and on about her trip to San Francisco in the 60’s. She was well on her way to becoming a cat lady. The big Nixon hater was an uncle, who was big into Kennedy conspiracy stuff. It just seemed to me that Carter people were not all there.

It was also my first lesson in the reality of politics. People don’t vote their interests. They vote for their tribe, their religion, their race, whatever. Carter won in 1976 by carrying the South. He was an Evangelical and a Georgian, so he won on a combination of rust belt states, the South and Appalachia. Even 40 years ago, it was crazy for Southerners to vote for a Democrat, but people convinced themselves he was not a crazy liberal. After all, he was a devout Christian and a Southerner. He could’t be that liberal.

The first election that shocked me was me was the 1988 Democrat primary. I was living in Massachusetts and I knew Dukakis was a joke. How that guy managed to win the nomination still baffles me. There was no chance for the party that year, as Reagan was so popular, even Bush was a shoe in. Still, nominating a guy, who makes the clerks at the DMV sound bright and interesting never made any sense. It just goes to show that determination and luck are what counts in politics.

The thing about that election that will always stick with me is when Bush did his “Read my lips. No new taxes” line. At that moment, I knew he was going to be a fink. The reason he said it was because he knew everyone knew he was going to raise taxes, so he lied. Of course, it did not take Bush long to prove he was liar all along. Little did I know that his presidency was the beginning of the end for the country. The downward trajectory of the GOP and the country started in the ’88 election.

While I’m on the subject of Bush, the first time I thought seriously about not voting was the 2000 election. I was pretty sure Bush would win handily so my boycotting the election would not be irresponsible. For whatever reason I could not go through with it so I stopped at my polling place on the way to work. I was shocked to see so many people voting and the type of people voting. I got the very clear impression that lots of liberals were motivated to vote against Bush. I came away thinking it was going to be a long night.

The funny thing about that election is normals assumed we dodged a bullet, but in retrospect we would have been better off if Gore had won. It would have discredited the neocons and put an end to the Bush dynasty. Gore was having a nervous breakdown, but that could have been handled. We still have no come up with a way to fix the disaster that was the Bush presidency. I don’t know if it will ever be fixed. My bet is a lot of people think back and wish that they had voted the other way back in 2000.

My first non-vote was 2012. I hated Romney, but I wanted to punish Obama so I went off to do my duty. I watched a bus full of little brown guys ushered in by an SEIU worker. They were given provisional ballots and someone who spoke their languages guided them through the process. I stood in line watching it as a fat girl with blue hair tapped at her cell phone. She had a face full of fishing tackle and probably the IQ of a goldfish. Disgusted, I went home without voting. That was a good day.

I’ll head off to vote for the last time in my life tomorrow and I will vote for Trump, even though he has no chance to win my state. It will be the last time we have a chance to vote for someone that is not a nut or a grifter. If Clinton wins, she will amnesty 50 million foreign peasants, creating something close to a one party nation as a result. America will rocket along toward becoming Brazil, if we’re lucky. The crazy bitch could very well start a war with Russia or the Chinese and that could finish us all off.

It was fun while it lasted.

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Lorenzo
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Lorenzo

Thanks for the James Joyce reminder. I will read tomorrow and skip the news.

kokor hekkus
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kokor hekkus

Yes, I think I will reread Dubliners tomorrow, it beats hearing about the election.

Friar Bob
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Friar Bob

The downward trajectory of the GOP (and nation) *RESUMED* in 1988, after a brief attempt at recovery. Not began.

ChiefIlliniCake
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ChiefIlliniCake

True. Ronnie was the only non-One Worlder to slip through the grid since Johnson found out JFK wasn’t down with the plan and had him greased.

Member

I loved Reagan, but in hindsight our downward spiral accelerated under him. Even though we ran deficits before he came in office, we were still reasonably responsible. After he started running up deficits, that’s when the wheels fell off. We have been funding fake prosperity on a credit card ever since. I wonder what this country would look like today if we didn’t rack up 20 trillion dollars in debt. I’m thinking the USA wouldn’t be as modern, but it would be fiscally very sound. Kind of like living in a modest home with no debt and leaving something to… Read more »

Drake
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Drake

Two things were going on in the 80’s. 1. Reagan made the final push to destroy Soviet Empire by engaging them in an arms race they couldn’t possibly afford. It worked, spectacularly. But, it left his successors with a massive military that they decided to use in all sorts of ill-advised foreign adventures. 2. Reagan thought he could just “starve the beast” of federal spending by cutting taxes. He thought the Democrats in Congress would eventually have to get their spending under control. He was wrong in a couple of ways. His tax cuts stimulated the economy to the point… Read more »

MMinLamesa
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MMinLamesa

Don’t forget that the deal he made was $2 in cuts for every $1 of new spending-the dem controlled Congress came through on the new spending and you know the rest of that story.

Richard Ong
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Richard Ong

Ditto on amnesty.

FaCubeItches
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FaCubeItches

It’s amazing how few people see Reagan for what he was – traditional America’s last throw of the dice. He was the Bulge Offensive, and traditional America wasn’t playing the part of the Allies in that movie.

Dr. Mabuse
Guest

I can relate to this. Getting old has not been the stodgy downhill slide into immobility I thought it would be. I’ve been conservative since I was a kid, and I imagined as I got older I’d just get more and more conservative, until I was one of those cranky old people waving my stick at every new idea that came down the pike. Instead, here I am, nearly 60, wandering around to alt-right sites and looking up Wikipedia to find out who Pepe the Frog is. I was a subscriber to National Review when I was a teenager; when… Read more »

Member

“And now I want to see that gaggle of boardroom dandies selling their stuff on ebay to make ends meet.” Funny you should say that. Remember the 1980s and the sitcom Family Ties? Remember the Michael J. Fox character Alex Keaton? (Of course you do, you’re Canadian.) That was my mentality back in those days. I never thought in a million years that I would be as anti big business and anti-establishment as I am today. But like you, I don’t see very many community-minded people stepping up for the greater good. They just want to stuff their pockets with… Read more »

Larry Darrell
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Larry Darrell

One consolation is watching the slow collapse of NR as more and more people recognize it as cuckservative (that term infuriates them, that is reason enough to use it). They always seemed hard-up, I would love to know about their financial backing, were they rescued by a cuckish foundation or mogul?

Dan Kurt
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re: “I would love to know about their financial backing.” Larry Darrell

Read the NR from 1959 in college library until I stopped subscribing when John Derbyshire was fired. For years I received a “personal” letter from WFB asking, no begging, for help. The magazine began as a CIA stunt and probably was kept afloat by some Black Ops money as asking nobodies like me would never have brought in enough money to pay for the ink.

Dan Kurt

Dutch
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Dutch

Look at the revenue streams of the publicly traded newspaper outfits, specifically NYT, GCI, TRNC. There is very little there. They force themselves into the public consciousness out of all proportion to what they actually are. They are all kaput, living on borrowed time and the kindness of strangers.

james wilson
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james wilson

When I was a lad I heard an old lady say “I don’t vote. It just encourages the bastards.”

J Palmer Cass
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J Palmer Cass

“It will be the last time we have a chance to vote for someone that is not a nut or a grifter. If Clinton wins, she will amnesty 50 million foreign peasants, creating something Iclose to a one party nation as a result. America will rocket along toward become Brazil, if we’re lucky. The crazy bitch could very well start a war with Russia or the Chinese and that could finish us all off.” Pretty much my calculation which is why I say “77, no grandchildren, have a nice day.” Oh, and a wonderful life. Made products that sold all… Read more »

Richard Ong
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Richard Ong

AKs?

ChiefIlliniCake
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ChiefIlliniCake

That post made me want a drink.

Honey, where’s the Drano?

kokor hekkus
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kokor hekkus

My thought is that I would like to camp out in Glacier National Park or Yellowstone until WW3 is over….

MMinLamesa
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MMinLamesa

Go for Glacier-more remote

Dan Kurt
Member

re: “I would like to camp out in Glacier National Park.” kokor hekkus

Was in the service in Montana for two years and saw both Glacier & Yellowstone up close and personal. Met an Indian near Glacier and never forgot his words to me on Glacier’s weather: “Enjoy the six weeks each year of cold Summer, the one week of Spring and Fall, but dread the rest of the year’s Winter which is brutal.

Dan Kurt

Ivar
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Ivar

Nice to see a Jack Vance fan in the comments. Only the best people come here!

Monty James
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Monty James

Slogan for the 2016 election:

“It’s Midnight In America–Get Down And Stay Down!”

LetsPlay
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LetsPlay

For this guy it’s “Keep your powder dry and your pecker hard!” It may be midnight but there’s still some fighting to be done. Rage … rage!

Member

I felt the same way last month about voting for Trump, and then all Democrat down ticket. But when push came to shove, I couldn’t bring myself to do it. I voted Trump and mostly Republicans.

james wilson
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james wilson

You’re a damn coward. Me too.

Solomon Honeypickle IV
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Solomon Honeypickle IV

Why not have voted for trump, and just him?

Severian
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Severian

I voted only for Trump, and to turn out all the judges (rotation in office being a once-cherished principle of our former republic). Fuck ’em all. I will only ever vote Republican again if Trump wins and drains the swamp. (If Hillary wins, of course, voting for anyone or anything will no longer be an option).

Kris
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Kris

Seems that yours is a behavior pattern, here. I voted for Trump, voted against all incumbents, and voted against all sitting judges. I suppose mine was a bit of the “drain the swamp” mentality, but I’m disgusted with the R-party in my state. Without a viable alternative — lets start a populist party, no? — I voted strategically.

Old Surfer
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Old Surfer

Same here, and only propositions I voted for was the one to legalize grass and bonds for the local jr. college..

King George III
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King George III

May God help us all.

May Trump have the balls to do what is necessary.

This is it.

MSO
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MSO

It’s really tough to believe that folks are mean spirited enough to vote for Bill’s wife. America’s not what it use to be.

Old Surfer
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Old Surfer

Don’t forget the 15% the media promised to give the dem candidates. Talk about selected not elected.

Member

I did my duty a couple of weeks ago, so today is a little bit of an anticlimax for me. Going to read and do a few chores. Interesting note from Dr. Mabuse. I used to read NR. Started when I was a teenager, too. I guess if I lived in Canada I would see voting as pointless. I don’t think it is yet here, but if Trump isn’t our next president, I will probably be joining her. So get out and vote!

Dr. Mabuse
Guest

Voting’s been pointless for years up here; I just wouldn’t admit it until about 2 years ago. I didn’t bother voting in the election that swept The Little Prince (Trudeau) into power, or the provincial one before that where we got our charming lesbian premier who’s already brought our credit rating down a few notches with her incompetence. It’s not especially that the mechanism is faulty, unlike the U.S. there’s very little fraud. It’s that I realize how degraded our people are. They WANT these malignant morons; they’ll trample anyone who tries to stand in their way as they hurtle… Read more »

Michael Young in Canada
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Michael Young in Canada

As a fellow Ontarian, I would point out two things:
First, we are all outnumbered by the GTA and its teeming millions of ‘instant constituents’.
Second, I don’t care that Wynne is a lesbian, or even that she is a woman. I care that she’s a moron.
I wish our cousins south of the 49th every success today. God Bless America.

meema
Member

Woke up at 4:30 this morning. Couldn’t go back to sleep so I crawled out, hit the coffee button, let the dog out, and opened my laptop. I sat for a good minute staring at my screen saver. It’s an orange/pink photo of sunrise on the lake we love that represents a new day. I thought, ‘new day, indeed’. I am a foaming mixture of conflicting emotions. Anxiety/resolve, fear/peace, dread/excitement. Perhaps it’s time for a true new day. And you know the old saw – it’s always darkest just before the dawn.

Member

From the wit and wisdom of Chairman Mao: “It’s always darkest just before it goes completely black”.

White hat
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White hat

It’s midnight in the garden of good and evil. May God have mercy on your souls.

Solomon Honeypickle IV
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Solomon Honeypickle IV

Shit but old people are gloomy! I smell victory, this morning 🙂

meema
Member

Old people are gloomy because we have been to too many rodeos and got kicked by too many horses. I hope you are right though. Victory would be most welcome. 🙂

Dutch
Guest
Dutch

Watching all the heads explode if The Donald pulls it off will be so worth it. I never thought I might get a chance to relive the 1980 election results in my lifetime.

Member

From your mouth to God’s ear, as they say. I hope you’re right. I have no idea whatsoever what things will look like in twelve hours. The minions of evil tell me it’s a shoe-in for the Dowager Empress of Darkness, while a lot of “dark cathedral” types speak of the impending Trumpocalypse. I just remember what happened four years, when the right were so stoked for Romney, and then at 6pm EST it was all, “Gee, I guess we didn’t see that coming…” As for old people being gloomy, that may be true in general, but did anyone notice… Read more »

thor47
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thor47

zman, I hate to disagree with you, but up to Reagan a great many southerners were Democrats, election results notwithstanding. My mother-in-law once said to my wife, upon being told we were registered Republicans, ” but you were born a Democrat! ” We eventually brought her around, as we did my parents, much to the anguish of my two youngest brothers who hate anything conservative. The wife and I made a trip to see her best friend from high school back in the 90s. The night before we left the conversation turned to the state of the country. I made… Read more »

LetsPlay
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LetsPlay

Godspeed and fair winds my friends. No matter which way the coin tosses, history will record the great unveiling of 2016.

Drake
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Drake

I agree – HW Bush was a disastrous turning point. If only Reagan had picked anyone else – Pete DuPont would be my choice – things would have been so much better.

I heard Ed Rollins talk about the early HW administration. It was basically a reversal of everything Reagan did and stood for – the taxes were just the most obvious betrayal.

ambiguousfrog
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ambiguousfrog

After Comey I felt the bitch is going to be dragged across the finish line by all the miscreants. Last night I realized voting Trump is the middle finger as we go down. Hopefully putting me on a list somewhere. Plan-R gentlemen. Yours truly,

Kong

https://youtu.be/9CRRVZqrRl0

Member

I just got back from voting. As usual it was that middle finger choice. But yet, there may well be a surprise just as there was in 1980. No surrender, and if Trump pulls it off, No prisoners. Long live Trump! Long live Pepe!

MMinLamesa
Guest
MMinLamesa

This too will be the last time I vote if Hillary wins. The toilet I’ve watched our country descend into will never be climbed out of with her victory. in 08, I expected Obama would defeat McCain, the epitome of the “get off my lawn” candidate but in 12, after 4 years of absolute fecklessness(to say the least) I was truly gob smacked that he was reelected.

There will be absolutely no righting the ship in 4 years, it’s now or never.

Severian
Guest
Severian

Ah W…. turns out the terrorists really DID win. President Gore’s response to 9/11 — an open letter to Al Qaeda, probably — would’ve invited more domestic terror attacks, but tighter security from the next Republican would’ve fixed that. Nothing will fix our grand “nation-building” adventure in Afghanistan and the Middle East (if Lord Curzon couldn’t do it, it can’t be done). This is why it frightens me when students ask me what I think will happen, and what to do about it — look, I tell them, I’m the idiot who voted for W. Bush twice. I really did… Read more »

Christopher S. Johns
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Christopher S. Johns

In retrospect, voting for Bush Jr. was voting for a moderate Democrat, albeit one with a Johnson-like ability to get sucked into unwinnable foreign wars. But even in hindsight, I can’t see either Gore or Kerry as the more viable, or less damaging, alternative. All I see with those two is that we would have embarked on 0bama-level progressive crazy a decade earlier. For a little election day relief, try Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 20 in D minor, K. 466 played by the incomparable Murray Perahia and the English Chamber Orchestra: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YaZxgGs8cwg This is good for now. You can switch… Read more »

Member

I agree that this goes at least back to Johnson and the “Kennedy” round of GAAT negotiations and the decision to intervene directly in Vietnam. You could possibly trace it back to the decisions of the 1950s to lower tariffs on shoes, ceramics and clothing and Suez, but every story must have a beginning and c. 1964 works for me. The other piece is the cultural one. As a contemporary observer, how we ended up with a ruling class that preaches libertinism while practicing abstinence (after Charles Murray) is beyond me. Zman has done a better job of this than… Read more »

Member

Just got back from voting. Its not a big line where I live (teutonic efficiency, or at least the Polack version). Usually mostly white where I live but it was all white this time. Coincidentally, we now have voter ID…

We have ‘same day registration’ here and there were 3 or 4 white guys in hoodies registering. Last chance to avoid being sent to the camps. We’ll see.

Rich Whiteman
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Rich Whiteman

My poor wife went emergency supply shopping last night, just filling any holes we might have had in our stockroom. Me, I’m hopeful but resigned to the probability of what, to me and other normals, seems an impossibility – more Clinton, less America. More war. More diluting of the “brand” as the peasants rush in.
At least we’ll eat well as the fires rage.

Guest
Guest
Guest

Why the doom and gloom? Trump is up in Florida this morning in the RCP averages and is clearly leading in all the tossup states he needs to get to 270. Absent massive voting fraud in Broward County Trump will win Florida and the election.

Samuel Adams
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Samuel Adams

I’m not a paranoid, but a) I trust nothing and b) everything about this election is a couple standard deviations off so…I trust nothing

FaCubeItches
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FaCubeItches

“Absent massive voting fraud”

That’s kind of the point….the voting fraud is going to be massive

Samuel Adams
Guest
Samuel Adams

“McGovernment, McGovernment
Where income is work free
We’ll all smoke pot and love a lot
When we get amnesty”

You’ll remember that amnesty and a $1000 for everyone were cornerstones of his campaign.

Sorry, ’72 was my first memorable election. Oddly later took a course with McGovern and found him a stand up guy and very willing to debate different viewpoints in his lectures. But you are right, this may be it and things will go full tribal once Hillary is installed.

Member

They vote for their tribe, their religion, their race, whatever. Ha, puts me in mind of the first election I can remember, that of 1968. My father banked with the Harris Bank, whose logo was Hubert the Harris Lion. So I was a Humphrey man… or child. Luckily, even in Chicago I couldn’t vote. And speaking of being ten, I have a very strong memory of the 1972 election. Nixon ran a commercial in which there were successive images of little toy airplanes and soldiers and ships on a table, and then the announcer would say for each, “McGovern plans… Read more »

Member

I remember that Nixon ad, too. It really made me feel vulnerable.

I’ve come to feel a great deal of kinship with Tricky Dick. After leaving the barrio, our second house was just a mile from his East Whittier home. Like him, I’m always trying to fix messes that smug assholes left behind. Like him, a good portion of the blame has always seemed to accrue to me rather than the smug assholes.

Member

My first election was 1968. I had just signed my enlistment papers and was awaiting my reporting date. I voted for Nixon. Four years later I voted for him again. In January 1977 I swore an oath to bite off my own right hand before allowing it to cast a Democrat vote. If Trump were not on the ballot I would have written in a vote for the dead Reagan.
Defiantly Deplorable.

Member

Z man – I’ve been lurking for several months and always enjoy your essays. I am with you bro – I voted for W in 2000 (my first vote was for Reagan in 1984) and I was so thankful at the time in 2000 that we dodged a bullet and didn’t get Gore. Now I realize that Gore might have been the better choice – who knows? That experience tempers my enthusiasm for Trump – I’ve loved him and supported him since August 2015 – but we all know he is a stop gap measure at best – I don’t… Read more »

anti-gnostic
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anti-gnostic

“It was also my first lesson in the reality of politics. People don’t vote their interests. They vote for their tribe, their religion, their race, whatever. ” Actually, people vote for the interests related to their tribe, or religion, or race. These interests rest on principles, or ideas one puts an earnest effort at living their life accordingly. “America will rocket along toward becoming Brazil, if we’re lucky.” We’re not even remotely close to that nation financially nor racially. Try again. “The crazy bitch could very well start a war with Russia or the Chinese and that could finish us… Read more »

Wilbur Hassenfus
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Wilbur Hassenfus

“people vote for the interests related to their tribe, or religion, or race. These interests rest on principles” Nonsense. The dems I know are voting because Hillary has a vagina, or because they hate “those rednecks” so much they can’t see straight, or because nice respectable white people like them vote democrat to reassure themselves that they’re just like the rich folks who actually benefit from it. Principles? That’s a fantasy. The entire foundation of the modern left is that they have no principles, and that the white ones (except the super-rich) abandon their own interests for the sake of… Read more »

Christopher S. Johns
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Christopher S. Johns

Thank you for that lesson in SJW Poli Sci 101. Sure, your ideas are inane and expressed in a language that isn’t quite English, but everyone can see that your local community college is doing a great job educating you young millennials as you march towards your smugly glorious future.

Notsothoreau
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Notsothoreau

First vote for McGovern, as hatred of Nixon was handed down in the family. Family was Democrats, back when Oklahoma was all Democrats, so I voted the same way. Lasted up into the Clintons, when it finally dawned on me that all Republican candidates weren’t stupid and all Democrats bright. I don’t know why it took me so long, but there you are. It’s a beautiful day. I have my red shirt on and my husband is off to drop the ballots in the drop box. DNR is down taking pictures of my place at the river. The city says… Read more »

michael
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michael

I was a 66 baby as well. I remember the I bicentennial celebrations in my town and how proud I was of my country. Now 40 years later this election has proved that we are a Balkanized people. The elites are shocked that white voters are acting like just another special interest group. Think we will make 250? ZMan if you are ever in burlington vermont I would like to buy you a beer.

Drake
Guest
Drake

Me too. Turned 50 a few months ago.

Member

All of my family is voting for Trump except my obstinate grandma. We have tried and tried to change her mind, but she has voted Dem every election since she died 14 years ago.

Member

On the subject of chief executives illegitimately usurping the power of the people and unilaterally “granting” citizenship to fifty million illegal aliens – from Mexico to Syria and goodness knows where else – we ought to bear in mind the dictum “What can be done by man can be undone by man” ….. In other words, two can play that game – and what’s sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander! Difficult – undoubtedly. Impossible – no, not at all. Force the cultural Marxists on the left and their allies – to live by their own rules!

Richard Ong
Guest
Richard Ong

Jjohhnn. Podhoretz’s Hell of a Ride is very insightful about Bush 41’s nothingness.