When Normalcy Is Revolution

Written by Victor David Hanson, published at Patriot Post, 2-2-17:

america-divided

By 2008, America was politically split nearly 50/50 as it had been in 2000 and 2004. The Democrats took a gamble and nominated Barack Obama, who became the first young, northern, liberal president since John F. Kennedy narrowly won in 1960.

Democrats had believed that the unique racial heritage, youth and rhetorical skills of Obama would help him avoid the fate of previous failed Northern liberal candidates Hubert Humphrey, George McGovern, Walter Mondale, Michael Dukakis and John Kerry.

Instead, what followed was a veritable “hope and change” revolution not seen since the 1930s. Obama pursued a staunchly progressive agenda — one that went well beyond the relatively centrist policies upon which he had campaigned. The media cheered and signed on.

Soon, the border effectively was left open. Pen-and-phone executive orders offered immigrant amnesties. The Senate was bypassed on a treaty with Iran and an intervention in Libya.

Political correctness under the Obama administration led to euphemisms that no longer reflected reality.

Culturally, the iconic symbols of the Obama revolution were the “you didn’t build that” approach to businesses and an assumption that race/class/gender would forever drive American politics, favorably so for the Democrats.

Then, Hillary Clinton’s unexpected defeat and the election of outsider Donald Trump sealed the fate of the Obama Revolution.

For all the hysteria over the bluntness of the mercurial Trump, his agenda marks a return to what used to be seen as fairly normal, as the U.S. goes from hard left back to the populist center.

Trump promises not just to reverse almost immediately all of Obama’s policies but to do so in a pragmatic fashion that does not seem to be guided by any orthodox or consistently conservative ideology.

Trade deals and jobs are Trump’s obsessions — mostly for the benefit of blue-collar America.

He calls for full-bore gas and oil development, a common culture in lieu of identity politics, secure borders, deregulation, tax reform, a Jacksonian foreign policy, nationalist trade deals in places of globalization, and traditionalist values.

In normal times, Trumpism — again, the agenda as opposed to Trump the person — might be old hat. But after the last eight years, his correction has enraged millions.

Yet securing national borders seems pretty orthodox. In an age of anti-Western terrorism, placing temporary holds on would-be immigrants from war-torn zones until they can be vetted is hardly radical. Expecting “sanctuary cities” to follow federal laws rather than embrace the nullification strategies of the secessionist Old Confederacy is a return to the laws of the Constitution.

Using the term “radical Islamic terror” in place of “workplace violence” or “man-caused disasters” is sensible, not subversive.

Insisting that NATO members meet their long-ignored defense-spending obligations is not provocative but overdue. Assuming that both the European Union and the United Nations are imploding is empirical, not unhinged.

Questioning the secret side agreements of the Iran deal or failed Russian reset is facing reality. Making the Environmental Protection Agency follow laws rather than make laws is the way it always was supposed to be.

Unapologetically siding with Israel, the only free and democratic country in the Middle East, used to be standard U.S. policy until Obama was elected.

Issuing executive orders has not been seen as revolutionary for the past few years — until now.

Expecting the media to report the news rather than massage it to fit progressive agendas makes sense. In the past, proclaiming the Obama a “sort of god” or the smartest man ever to enter the presidency was not normal journalistic practice.

Freezing federal hiring, clamping down on lobbyists and auditing big bureaucracies — after the Obama-era IRS, VA, GSA, EPA, State Department and Secret Service scandals — are overdue.

Half the country is having a hard time adjusting to Trumpism, confusing Trump’s often unorthodox and grating style with his otherwise practical and mostly centrist agenda.

In sum, Trump seems a revolutionary, but that is only because he is loudly undoing a revolution.

 

~~~~~~~~~

In 2008 the Democrats gambled and America lost. With the help of the media, they spent the next eight years sugar-coating that bet to make it look like a win, and a lot of people bought it. That’s what happens when you give away free stuff.

The media hyped up Hillary’s campaign to a point where most all Americans thought she had it won before the ballots were even cast. The Democrats were so wrapped up their own hype, they forgot to listen to Americans and they underestimated their opponent. When Trump won the election Americans were shocked, so much so that some still aren’t over it.

So naturally, when Trump started righting the wrongs the Dems had perpetrated, it’s no wonder it seemed revolutionary, instead of what it is – a return to sanity.

~Kathy



Categories: Political

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10 replies

  1. As always Victor Davis Hanson writes a great essay and your comments are spot-on too, Kathy.

    It’s definitely a sign of sick times that Donald Trump is considered to be a revolutionary. The original revolutionaries in this country were men of great principle who would have laid down their lives for liberty. Donald Trump is an opportunist and former liberal (hopefully former) who apparently woke up one day and thought, “This is bullsh*t! I think I’ll run for president and undo it.” I think he’s grown up in the process and I’ll give him credit that what he’s doing requires courage but he’ll never be a great man relative to historical standards. Anyone who is 70 years old and still on the low side of the learning curve of conservatism is never going to be great, no matter what anyone says.

    Nudging people back to sanity isn’t going to be easy apparently. Insanity was too much fun and too lucrative. The children don’t like it that the adults are re-asserting control. I would predict that things would settle down in good time because Americans are famous for their short memories but for one thing: Barack Obama. The devil is still out there and he has every intention of making sure sanity does not return.

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    • True, CW, when judged by those standards, Trump’s no revolutionary, but then I don’t know of anyone who would hold up in comparison to them.

      For someone whose campaign started out like a contestant on a reality show, he seems to have come full circle and now has a deeper appreciation for the job and the associated responsibilities. One of the things that concerns me is the number of EOs/actions he’s pumping out. He’s ‘ruling’ just like O did except that we happen to approve of the direction he’s going. Maybe it’s too early, but I want to see some solid legislation coming out of his term.

      What’s more worrisome to me than the devil O still being out there, is George Soros is still out there pulling strings. I don’t know if he’s behind some of the riots we’re seeing, but it sure smacks of his handiwork. As long as he’s allowed to continue the agitation, things will never settle down.

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      • Don’t fret the EO count just yet. DJT has issued only 7 to BHO’s 9 for the same period. There are also 11 Presidential Memoranda, so some people place his count at 18. PMs are not logged in the Federal Regestry like EOs unless the President directs it. Since the most transparent president in history didn’t have many of his PMs published, the count for BHO is hard to verify.

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      • Good info Salty, thanks. I did not remember that O had popped out so many so early. I found this list of them at Fox…

        http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2017/02/03/list-trumps-executive-orders.html

        Other than the snowflakes, I’ve not seen or heard anyone complain about them being unconstitutional, so at least he’s within his authority, unlike O was.

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      • I did get a link that shows Presidential Actions (EOs, PMs, Proclamations, and the like). It currently lists every publicly revealed edict from DJT’s latest to BHO’s first – in reverse order. I skipped ahead (back) to the first 2 weeks of Obama (Feb 5, 2009), so you can check yourself. If you hit the ‘Prev’ link at the bottom, to move forward in time, you will see BHO really got on a roll starting Feb 6, 2009. No wonder the Obamapologists want to stick with the “first 10 days” meme.
        https://obamawhitehouse.archives.gov/briefing-room/presidential-actions?term_node_tid_depth=46&page=208

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      • I see what you mean, Salty, and March was a pretty busy month too. Just listing the titles of them takes 212 pages, so I’d say Trump is just getting started good. Still, legislation would be better, so the next guy to come along can’t simply reverse them.

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    • Under the circumstances I’m willing to give Trump some leeway here. It’s not the number of EO’s that matters, it’s the substance and whether or not there is an attempt to rewrite the law. Unprecedented acts beget more unprecedented acts, unfortunately. The Obama mess is driving much of what Trump does.

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  2. In many ways it is a revolution — a revolution against the whims of politically pampered potentates. Right or wrong, Trump is leading that revolution. Allow me a short parable.

    There was a man named Obama, who craved adulation To this end, he waved at distant, green pastures and cities of riches, telling his followers it was theirs for the taking. For eight years, his hordes pillaged all that was before them. Many were left behind, or fell victim to that wave of greed, but that mattered not to Obama’s admirers. They praised him for their bounty, especially those at the front, where looting was best.

    His designated heir promised to continue that destructive march across the landscape, indefinitely. Then came Donald J. Trump, who pointed to nearing shorelines where the land ended. He told them there was nothing left to plunder. He made them look back along the path they had traveled, and the destruction they had wrought. His message was brutal, yet simple.

    “If you want to eat, we must replant those scorched fields. If you want shelter, we must rebuild those razed cities. If you want dignity, we must no longer beg alms from those enriching themselves at our expense. If you want freedom, turn and come with me. What have you got to lose?”

    True, many chose not to go with Trump. However, they have already began to fight among themselves over diminishing power and prestige, as their former serfs abandon them in search of their own destinies. Those who did return with Trump have begun to sow barren fields, tend to neglected orchards, clear rubble from vacant streets, and once again breath the air of free people.

    Is Trump really the correct person for the job? That remains to be determined. Yet, the steps he has taken to date are in the right direction.

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    • A great story, Salty and thanks for the input. I agree he is going in the right direction and with sanity so far out of reach for so long, it would be seen as a revolution just to return to normal.

      While working on this post, I wondered if all this hysteria is for Trump specifically, or would the lefties’ reactions been the same for one of the other Republican candidates, had they won instead of Trump.

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      • I suspect they would raise the same complaints, but to a lesser degree. The their rancor is exacerbated because Trump might actually accomplish what others only would only talk about. Babies may only whimper if you threaten to take their candy, but will wail mightily if you do.

        Liked by 1 person

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