Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Codevilla and Our Revolutionary Spiral

 

Angelo Codevilla isn’t as prolific as, say, Victor Davis Hanson, but when he drops one it’s time to pay attention. The latest is no exception: Our Revolution’s Logic.

His main thesis is that a spiral has begun, away from the American system of resolving political differences, and into a tit-for-tat of using power, fair and foul, not just to be left alone, but to force the other party to conform. Trump, the Resistance, and Kavanaugh all play starring roles. Read the whole thing.

Is he right? Are we past the point of no return? Or is there still an escape from totalitarianism, back to the idea of limited government, individual autonomy, and political process that doesn’t dominate our lives?

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  1. Hang On Member
    Hang On Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Thanks for that. Flight 93 continues.

    • #1
    • October 22, 2018, at 9:55 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  2. RightAngles Member

    I think that Trump will be seen as a turning point in this mess. The people wanted someone who isn’t a politician. Someone who doesn’t know how to weigh his words to the point where he ends up saying nothing, because he’s never had to. I feel hope for the first time in a while, but we still have a lot of work to do if we’re going to stop the madness.

    The Democrats are desperate. Their latest little fiasco, that made-up video of supposedly Trump supporters harassing Nancy Pelosi, is evidence of that.

    • #2
    • October 22, 2018, at 10:24 AM PDT
    • 7 likes
  3. Ekosj Inactive

    Wow. That article is s keeper. And unfortunately I can’t find many flaws in the logic. My only quibble is the identification of the 2008 financial crisis as the kickoff event. I’d go back to the 2000 ‘hanging chad’ election. “The Resistance“ … feelings of illegitimacy, the unreasoning enmity, had their genesis there. I went to college with a person who is now a long term Democrat member of Congress. They were always as far Left as you could go and still call yourself a Democrat, but they’d always been willing to listen and engage in civil debate They could, on some things , even be persuaded.

    After the 2000 election, I was very disturbed by the increasingly angry tone and beligerance and palpable contempt toward middle America coming from their Party. I sent a letter. I was polite but straightforward. I received back a two page hand-written invective filled screed telling me that if I couldn’t see the inherent rightness of their positions then I was part of the problem and had passed beyond the pale. That’s when I knew. They won’t stop. For them it’s now Political jihad. There is no god but Marx and Mao is his Prophet.

    • #3
    • October 22, 2018, at 2:43 PM PDT
    • 20 likes
  4. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Yeah, wow. Life is unpredictable, but Codevilla’s logic is sound. I hope he’s wrong, but I fear he’s right. I have little hope for federalism as long as the Left maintains any power in the institutions it now dominates. Grim.

    • #4
    • October 22, 2018, at 3:20 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  5. Chris O. Coolidge
    Chris O. Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    The answer, then, to nip this “revolution” in the bud is to always let the other side’s words and actions be theirs. We can’t control what they say, and, apparently, they have trouble with it too. Others don’t need to hear our judgments, they have their own. Outrage is exhausting and gets us nowhere.

    Then we pick up the decent middle and watch the decent left stay home during elections. In short, we just keep winning and have the opportunity to establish something less corrosive.

    The only reason politics wasn’t like this in many of our memories is because the D’s controlled Congress for 50+ years. Everyone was civil because the power centers were more or less defined and stable. Some don’t deal well with these more uncertain times, but we had them before and things were pretty ugly then, too. When we have an assault and battery by one elected official that gravely injures another on the Senate or House floor–and it goes unpunished–then we’ll know our something is irretrievable.

    Until then articles like this one (interesting and well written as it is) are just clickbait, and, one might add, seemingly making an effort to make the perception of irreconcilable differences reality. Sells ‘papers, I guess.

    • #5
    • October 23, 2018, at 1:46 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  6. LibertyDefender Member

    Ekosj (View Comment):
    I went to college with a person who is now a long term Democrat member of Congress. They were always as far Left as you could go and still call yourself a Democrat, but they’d always been willing to listen and engage in civil debate. They could, on some things , even be persuaded.

    Is this person a he or a she? I think it would help your story if we knew.

    I miss subject-verb agreement in gender and number.

    I wonder if Steve Hayward could sponsor some graduate research in linguistics/political science/history to investigate the effect that widespread abandonment of subject-verb agreement has had in accelerating the descent into madness that is the LGBTQ movement. Pronouns are a major front in that war. I suspect if English teachers had over the past 20-30 years done their jobs and enforced simple rules of proper sentence structure, it would not be so easy for “gender warriors” to disrupt workplaces, academia, and politics.

    He who controls the language controls the debate, after all. My personal theory is that replacing the term “homosexual” with the word “gay” was the lynchpin. It’s particularly cruel irony that nothing about “gay rights” or “gay activism” involves gaiety. The LGBTQ movement, like feminism, is humorless, joyless.

    Oh BY THE WAY, Codevilla’s column is indeed compelling. It and all three interrelated columns at the American Mind are very powerful. I think Right Angles is correct that Trump is a turning point. In retrospect, I see how powerful – and how necessary – it was to see a Republican candidate actually fight back against smears by the Democrat-Media Complex. (I’m obsessively self-analyzing to determine if I should have recognized it during the primaries.) I don’t know if we’ve passed the point of no return in this spiral. But if Trump hadn’t arrived to turn the spiral, wouldn’t the insane leftward movement of the Democrats have passed a different point of no return?

    I’m relieved that my children are safely out of school I’d surely become a nightly news item if they were still in school and “gender choice” rules were implemented regarding access to bathrooms and locker rooms.

    • #6
    • October 23, 2018, at 3:29 AM PDT
    • 9 likes
  7. Ekosj Inactive

    LibertyDefender (View Comment):
    I miss subject-verb agreement in gender and number.

    Yeah…I knew it was clunky as I was writing it. But that’s what I get for writing on the subway.

    • #7
    • October 23, 2018, at 5:41 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  8. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge

    I think you are missing a point. All Trump does is maybe extend the inevitable. The progressives have been on a decades long March and a little bit of Trump is not going to stop it. When they get back in power, and they will, there is going to be hell to pay as our rightful self appointed leaders use all force to destroy the Deplorables. It it is now bend knee or kill people time, or will be soon. Soon it may be time to water the liberty tree or watch it die.

    • #8
    • October 23, 2018, at 8:17 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  9. MarciN Member

    Ekosj (View Comment):
    There is no god but Marx and Mao is his Prophet.

    This. 

    • #9
    • October 23, 2018, at 9:14 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
  10. Ontheleftcoast Member

    LibertyDefender (View Comment):

    Is this person a he or a she? I think it would help your story if we knew.

    I miss subject-verb agreement in gender and number.

    This person’s name is Legion?

    Or is it that @ekosj has some fear for their job or personal security if their  affiliation with Ricochet, a member of the organized resistance to the Resistance is conveyed by this pol to the wrong people?

    • #10
    • October 23, 2018, at 9:32 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  11. Ontheleftcoast Member

    The constituency for the continued existence of the USA is small, and some people who like to think that they belong to it will be acting against interest if they stand up for it. Phil Gramm and John F. Early from the WSJ two weeks ago (paywall):

    Transfer payments essentially have eliminated poverty in America. Transfers now constitute 84.2% of the disposable income of the poorest quintile of American households and 57.8% of the disposable income of lower-middle-income households. These payments also make up 27.5% of America’s total disposable income.

    The stated goal of the War on Poverty is not just to raise living standards, but also to make America’s poor more self-sufficient and to bring them into the mainstream of the economy. In that effort the war has been an abject failure, increasing dependency and largely severing the bottom fifth of earners from the rewards and responsibilities of work.

    In 1965, before funds were appropriated for War on Poverty programs, all five income quintiles had more families in which at least one person worked than families in which the head of household was of prime working age. So broadly based was the work ethic that the lowest income quintile had only 5.4% more families with working-age heads and no one working than did the middle quintile. The lower-middle quintile actually had proportionately fewer families where no one worked than did the middle quintile.

    The expanding availability of antipoverty transfers has devastated the work effort of poor and lower-middle income families. By 1975 the lowest-earning fifth of families had 24.8% more families with a prime-work age head and no one working than did their middle-income peers. By 2015 this differential had risen to 37.1%. And by that same year, even families in the lower-middle income quintile headed by working-age persons were almost 6% more likely to have no one working than a similar family in the middle-income quintile.

    The only hope – it is just that and not a certainty – lies in returning enough Americans to the workforce and not replacing them, or blocking their reentry, with illegal immigrants. The Democrats know this.

    This is a real question: What part of the continental United States do you think will be the least bad place to be in or after 2021 for a family? For retirees?

    • #11
    • October 23, 2018, at 9:47 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  12. Joseph Eagar Member
    Joseph Eagar Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    This has been obvious for so. . .many. . .years. So many years! Come on people, what Bush and Obama did was not normal politics. I don’t know why, but the post-Clinton political elite–of both parties–have been playing hardball in an incredibly irresponsible and damaging way. Both Bush and Obama wanted to turn America into a one-party state with so-called “permanent majorities”, engineered (in both cases!) by pandering to Hispanics and privileging them above other Americans.

    That’s not the only failing of the 21st century elite, either. Elites fail to understand that America’s economic policy mix–that so benefits them and makes them so freaking wealthy–was instituted in the 90s to prevent Latin American and the Chinese economies from collapsing and dragging us all down to hell. It didn’t happen because American elites are moral supermen who uniquely deserve economic protection from the government, even as they subject the rest of the population to ever-greater competition to their own benefit.

    And no, “policy mix” isn’t a euphemism for “market forces.” Market forces didn’t create the fiscal-deficit-driven “strong dollar policy” (King Dollar!), which acts as a subsidy for Chinese and other foreign goods. They didn’t create the professional guilds and their absurd licensing requirements, or our obscene college-based class system, or an immigration policy that protects skilled workers while flooding the labor market with unskilled workers.

    • #12
    • October 23, 2018, at 10:19 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
  13. RufusRJones Member

    Ep. 843 The Roots of Political Correctness, with Angelo Codevilla

    This one’s a must-listen, both for the topic and also for the guest: the brilliant Angelo Codevilla. What are the true origins of political correctness? Codevilla traces them to sources you’ll find chilling — but when you hear his explanation, everything starts to make sense.

    I keep intending to start this.

    • #13
    • October 23, 2018, at 12:55 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  14. Rodin Member

    Ekosj (View Comment):
    My only quibble is the identification of the 2008 financial crisis as the kickoff event. I’d go back to the 2000 ‘hanging chad’ election. “The Resistance“ … feelings of illegitimacy, the unreasoning enmity, had their genesis there.

    I think Codevilla has it right. In 2000 the resistance seemed to be between two contending political affiliations and not between the Ruling Class and the rest of us. But 2008 and “too big to fail” demonstrated that the people’s economics — capitalism — was too unruly for the Ruling Class. We were told that we were in crisis when only a regulatory system was in crisis. Would there have been bad outcomes for a lot of people? Yes, but even more so for the Ruling Class. That was what was not to be tolerated, not the incremental suffering of people freely restoring a balance in the market place.

    • #14
    • October 24, 2018, at 6:44 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  15. Jim George Member

    Chris O. (View Comment):
    Until then articles like this one (interesting and well written as it is) are just clickbait, and, one might add, seemingly making an effort to make the perception of irreconcilable differences reality. Sells ‘papers, I guess.

    I truly wish I could be as sanguine about this article as you apparently are, but like @ekosj and @westernchauvinist, I find the depth of the research nothing short of astonishing and the logic upon which the conclusions is based to be sound. I wish it were otherwise because, as I just wrote in response to @henryracette‘s great post “American: The Identity Group for the Rest of Us”, I deeply love America, I love Old Glory, and I do pray that perhaps we can nurture back the spirit of brotherhood America The Beautiful sings about and maybe that nurture and love of country will help in the process of healing the white hot hatred of America we see on the far left these days. By the way, after watching the Kavanaugh hearings and the craziness of Pocahontas and Spartacus and the nastiness of Schumer and Pelosi–I could write all afternoon and not get to all of it– is there anything left of the left but the far left? Seems a reasonable question to me; in my more and more humble opinion, almost all of them act like something out of a high school comedy, and I should apologize to producers of high school comedies all across the fruited plain for that comparison! 

    It seems on that score, at least, I’m in good company in view of a great piece by @MollieHemingway a few days ago entitled “Tennessee Senate Race shows there is no such thing as a moderate Democrat in 2018”, in which she sums up, in her usual razor sharp style, how far they have turned left:

    “As the recent Kavanaugh debacle showed, at best the Senate has a grand total of one Democrat who can be labeled moderate: Joe Manchin. Even Democratic senators from all the other states that desired a Kavanaugh confirmation voted against him.”

    ***

    “A new National Republican Senatorial Committee ad dealing with the race understands this issue well:

    “Rather than target Bredesen, who is generally liked, it points out that if he wins, bad things will happen to Tennessee. It makes the case that the majority in the Senate is razor-thin and that Tennessee voters could be responsible for turning the Senate to a Democratic majority. Featuring clips of radical senators Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), and Cory Booker, (D-Spartacus), it notes that “If Bredesen wins, Dianne Feinstein picks your judges, Bernie Sanders runs the budget and Chuck Schumer runs everything.”

    “Cory Booker (D-Spartacus)” — what a perfect touch! Says it all, in my opinion.

    Sincerely, Jim

     

     

     

     

    • #15
    • October 25, 2018, at 2:30 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  16. Chris O. Coolidge
    Chris O. Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Jim George (View Comment):
    By the way, after watching the Kavanaugh hearings and the craziness of Pocahontas and Spartacus and the nastiness of Schumer and Pelosi–I could write all afternoon and not get to all of it

    Thanks, Jim. Just one question: are any of these people your neighbors?

    Many conversations here follow the theme of “Washington doesn’t get it,” and “Washington isn’t the real world.” It’s true again. I mean, none of my D friends have disowned me (yet) despite the best efforts of those trying to divide us. On that point, my last paragraph is a polite dig at Mr. Codevilla for promoting the idea of divide.

    Perception drives reality, and we’re using our observations of a melodramatic caricature (D.C., that is, and purposely redundant) of our society to feed our beliefs of what things are like in the rest of the country. Hogwash! 

    I’m not sure what the D’s are thinking in terms of strategy, maybe it’s “Trump sounds angry when he talks (though he doesn’t, most of the time) and he won, so we’ll also be angry and muscle in on some of this populism.” Really, they’re just throwing it all out there in an effort to hijack the narrative from someone who has finely honed skills in the art.

    Maybe they’re just playing to their donor-class constituency, I don’t know. I do know, or at least perceive, that they’re angering people on their side and driving a fair number away. They don’t get it, and it’s not the real world.

    • #16
    • October 26, 2018, at 2:07 PM PDT
    • 1 like

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