Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Conservative Media Shakeout and Misguided Price Points

 

I generally read and follow most right-of-center media endeavors, except for those that consistently offer very little (e.g., Heritage Signal, etc.). I have long had a high regard for Jonah Goldberg, usually appreciating his former stance of self-deprecating good humor; I have all of his books, some even autographed. I would have voted for David French for president had he run.

But I do not see the purpose of The Dispatch, Jonah’s new venture with Steve Hayes (former Weekly Standard editor; his book on The Connection is criminally neglected by all of the isolationists out there), and a few others (including David French lured away from National Review). I am not speaking here only as one who believes that the Green Bay Packers are Evil (they are, and Aaron Rodgers is one of the biggest jerks in professional sports; if you know Steve Hayes, you understand why it was necessary for me to point that out about Rodgers and the Packers).

Jonah’s writings are obviously the hoped-for attraction and were, in the past very good, more recently usually OK, except that he seems to have great difficulty finding a column or G-File topic these days that isn’t yet another stale rehash of why Trump is the worst evah. Even for those of us who are not big Trump fans, the broken-record reiteration of the same story, especially when accompanied by shallow “analysis” or simple parroting of the Ben Wittes Lawfare line, gets very old. Very fast. And very tedious.

So, for me, the problem based on what I see so far from The Dispatch, is that I don’t see any compelling value proposition – no space in the market for them to occupy, no value-added that is not there already in multiple places doing the same thing (all too often, drearily repetitive pieces on Bad Trump; Charlie Sykes’ stuff is the worst out there these days) – usually for a lot less or no money. The Dispatch is basically The Bulwark, but at $10 a month. The two operations could be combined with no loss in editorial quality, except that each is run by a different group of otherwise like-minded people who each want to be in charge of her/his own publication.

Why, exactly, would anyone spend $100 a year to read yet another screed against “populism” (Trump) that you read at The Bulwark? If I want to get that steady diet, I can read a special talent like Kevin Williamson (who does roughly the same thing these days). And how is the value offered better than competitors for roughly the same amount of your money, such as the other conservative media organizations, or other non-political competitors for the same pot of money, such as Amazon Prime or Netflix? Ricochet is priced about right, NR Plus when you get the introductory digital subscription for about $59 is fine (incidentally the NR Plus auto-renew at $100 a year is not the prevailing substitution value correct price). Daily Wire is selling Ben Shapiro to his biggest fans at $100 a year; I do not subscribe, Ben is perfectly OK these days, but not to me at that price.

As the industry tries now to backfill a sellable paywall model in the internet media shakeout, conservative media – not just The Dispatch – is guilty of pricing to their perceived revenue need rather than to the market value filling an actual niche. It is like those who after the 2007 financial crisis found their home values underwater and their adjustable mortgage rates increased, so they needed to sell. Lots of people were trying to sell houses that they had unwisely bought at peak prices, and they put them up for sale at prices intended to get them “whole” out of bad mortgages. “I need $500,000, so price this $400,000 home at $525,000.” The market did not cooperate, and the actual prices reverted to pre-bubble vakues, not what would service the debt load.

And, when explaining the mission and positioning for the new media company, Steve Hayes said that the goal was not to be just another place for opinion writing, but to add the all-too-often missing reporting of stories, to add facts, not just viewpoints. So their first move was to add David French from National Review, whose metier is opinion writing, with added analytical pieces on Constitutional law. No shoe-leather reporting there. Then, early-hire Sarah Isgur was a guest on Area 45, the Hoover Institution podcast, and she explained that facts are all out there in this Twitter world of instant reporting, so her most important contribution would be to explain what the facts mean, presumably a la Vox Explainers. No shoe-leather reporting there, in fact, the description was roughly opposite Steve Hayes’ described mission.

Then Declan Garvey visited The Remnant just after the Horowitz Report was released, and a) he had not read it, so b) he and Jonah quoted David French, who seemed to have gotten his spin from reading the NYT – “There was no bias in the FBI, so there was a legitimate reason to run the investigation (and deceive the FISA court to get spy warrants looking anywhere possible for something to verify Steele).” Unlike Byron York, he apparently never got around to reading past the first paragraph of the report itself, nor has he, as far as I can see, acknowledged Horowitz’s Congressional testimony, which substantively contradicts virtually every statement or assumption that Schiff and French and Lawfare have relied on for the last two years.

David says roughly the same thing in every single column in a less entertaining style. His “legal analysis” of the Ukraine issue (published on 12/5/2019 in his newsletter) reads like Andrew Weissmann wrote it, not an allegedly fair-minded lawyer:

I’ve made my position on the House impeachment inquiry quite clear. It’s absolutely impeachable conduct for a president to distort international diplomacy in a strategically vital region of the world to attempt to coerce a desperate, dependent ally into investigating a crackpot conspiracy theory and a domestic political opponent. The president put his own interests above the country—and not in a minor matter. It’s important to set a precedent that such conduct is intolerable.

The statement above simply asserts a conclusion, without support for it, apparently based on the fact that Trump is such an unspeakably horrible person that he must be guilty. This is not reporting, nor is it analysis. It is a set of lazy, bald assertions made based on personal aesthetic distaste. It reflects as little intellectual content and insight as we get from most of Donald Trump’s tweets on policy matters.

Why pay the highest price in conservative media to subscribe to read this?

I think that the market will settle out eventually to the stage where people subscribe to one or two favorite, good value media purveyors at roughly $5 per month each, and use an excellent aggregator for supplemental information. The best of these is probably Real Clear Politics.

Then, after the shakeout is more mature, and the surviving startups have learned the value proposition lesson, someone will create a good value paywall aggregator, where you subscribe to the aggregator for $5 per month, and get a limited number of clicks per month (total for all month perhaps 100 articles including a very few at WSJ, etc.) over and above the two or three free reads now permitted. The administrative model is there already in the way music royalties are handled.

Of course, I could be dead wrong, and The Dispatch could sell a whole bunch of subscriptions at the rates they desire. If so, I will follow the CNN, NYT, and WaPo precedent and pretend that I did not spend the last three years peddling utter nonsense and spoon-fed propaganda, freeing me to be righteously opinionated about everything else.

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There are 196 comments.

  1. MichaelKennedy Coolidge

    I have assumed that National Review and Weekly Standard were following the dictates of their funders. If there is one group more hostile to Trump than the Media, it is the big funders in DC who have run things pretty much their own way for years. Even now, I see the remaining Koch brother teaming up with George Soros to fund a new venture.

    • #1
    • January 17, 2020, at 2:00 PM PST
    • 8 likes
  2. Arahant Member

    Agreed. It is unfortunate that so many have decided to let Trump rent out their brains at no cost to him. Jonah used to be interesting. He still occasionally is. So many others I have fallen away from, because interesting people started playing the one-note samba, and once you’ve heard it, there is no reason to hear it again.

    I get a lot for my money here at Ricochet. Would I get twice as much for my money at The Dispatch? I can’t see how I would. It’s not like I could spend twice as much of my time there. Besides, I can get those same opinions here from @garyrobbins, and he has kept his sense of humor better.

    • #2
    • January 17, 2020, at 2:07 PM PST
    • 15 likes
  3. Arahant Member

    Also, I would far rather have all the voices on Ricochet rather than the handful of voices on these other sites. I would rather read the Duane Oyens, Michael Kennedys, Zafars, and even Gary Robbinses of the world than be in an isolated space of like-minded people.

    • #3
    • January 17, 2020, at 2:12 PM PST
    • 11 likes
  4. Hoyacon Member

    My sense is that The Dispatch (and perhaps The Bulwark) exist on the basis of “Hey, why not?” Would they exist if the need to actually print something and send it to a subscriber base was still the prevailing model? I’m admittedly not informed enough to know with precision what the financial barriers to entry are in digital publishing, but it strikes that they’re not prohibitive if one has a name and can line up a few stakeholders. After that, let’s see what happens.

    • #4
    • January 17, 2020, at 2:15 PM PST
    • Like
  5. Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… Member

    I wonder if these sites actually make money, or if the subscription fees are mostly for show. I seem to recall a Remnant podcast many months ago in which Goldberg discussed having obtained contributions from “investors,” or something like that.

    I’m not making a conspiracy claim (I hope), just floating a hypothesis. If there were some wealthy individuals who wanted to promote the viewpoint of the Bulwark or Disptach, one way to do it would be to make non-recourse loans to the entity, and perhaps plan to eventually forgive the loans.

    I’m not a tax expert, but it strikes me that such an investor could even claim a tax deduction for the loss.

    • #5
    • January 17, 2020, at 2:35 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  6. Blondie Thatcher

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Also, I would far rather have all the voices on Ricochet rather than the handful of voices on these other sites. I would rather read the Duane Oyens, Michael Kennedys, Zafars, and even Gary Robbinses of the world than be in an isolated space of like-minded people.

    This is exactly what I was going to say. We have great writers here on the member feed. I’m not a paying member of The Dispatch but is get their stuff in my email. So far it’s just as Duane has said. Given what Jonah and Mr. Hayes stayed as their goals for the site, I was expecting more things like Byron York, Kim Strassel, and Catherine Herridge. 

    • #6
    • January 17, 2020, at 2:54 PM PST
    • 7 likes
  7. Jdetente Member

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Agreed. It is unfortunate that so many have decided to let Trump rent out their brains at no cost to him.

    This is quite plainly the greatest real estate deal in Trump’s career…

    • #7
    • January 17, 2020, at 2:57 PM PST
    • 18 likes
  8. Franco Member
    Franco Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Jdetente (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Agreed. It is unfortunate that so many have decided to let Trump rent out their brains at no cost to him.

    This is quite plainly the greatest real estate deal in Trump’s career…

    Except those brains are not exactly Boardwalk and Park Place, more like Baltic Avenue and Mediterranean. Still the $6 rents add up over time…

    • #8
    • January 17, 2020, at 4:28 PM PST
    • 11 likes
  9. Franco Member
    Franco Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):

    I wonder if these sites actually make money, or if the subscription fees are mostly for show. I seem to recall a Remnant podcast many months ago in which Goldberg discussed having obtained contributions from “investors,” or something like that.

    I’m not making a conspiracy claim (I hope), just floating a hypothesis. If there were some wealthy individuals who wanted to promote the viewpoint of the Bulwark or Disptach, one way to do it would be to make non-recourse loans to the entity, and perhaps plan to eventually forgive the loans.

    I’m not a tax expert, but it strikes me that such an investor could even claim a tax deduction for the loss.

    Since you asked:

    The organization’s 501(c)(4) advocacy counterpart, Defending Democracy Together, has been criticized for accepting at least $600,000 in two grants from Democracy Fund Voice, a 501(c)(4) group created and funded by left-wing mega-donor Pierre Omidyar. [10]According to Democracy Fund Voice’s website, in May 2018 it “approved two grants to Defending Democracy Together: first in the amount of up to $100,000 over one year and then in the amount of up to $500,000 over one year,” with specific mention of DDT’s Republicans for the Rule of Law project.

    —————————————————————

    Another organization that helps fund The Bulwark is the Hewlett Foundation which purports to be non-partisan but has given over 100 million dollars to Planned Patenthood and is their second largest finder. Also supports Catholics for Choice

    https://www.influencewatch.org/non-profit/william-and-flora-hewlett-foundation/

    … so, yeah.

    • #9
    • January 17, 2020, at 4:41 PM PST
    • 14 likes
  10. Hoyacon Member

    Franco (View Comment):

    Jdetente (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Agreed. It is unfortunate that so many have decided to let Trump rent out their brains at no cost to him.

    This is quite plainly the greatest real estate deal in Trump’s career…

    Except those brains are not exactly Boardwalk and Park Place, more like Baltic Avenue and Mediterranean. Still the $6 rents add up over time…

    I should probably keep this to myself, but reading this made me wish Monopoly would introduce a brain and a cell phone as game pieces. The top hat and little car are very twentieth century.

    • #10
    • January 17, 2020, at 4:49 PM PST
    • 1 like
  11. rgbact Member

    Theres just no 3 Trump “intellectuals” that can stack up with Jonah, Hayes, and French. Admit it. Just listening to them all on a podcast is gold. So, enjoy the intellectual also rans Kurt Schlicter, Mollie Hemingway, and Ahmari whats his face. TownHall is charging about $90 and they don’t have even one person that ranks with those 3. Just a bunch of Trumper lightweights throwing out the daily low grade red meat. You can hire fresh college grads for that game.

     

    • #11
    • January 17, 2020, at 5:44 PM PST
    • Like
  12. Gumby Mark (R-Meth Lab of Demo… Thatcher

    MichaelKennedy (View Comment):

    I have assumed that National Review and Weekly Standard were following the dictates of their funders. If there is one group more hostile to Trump than the Media, it is the big funders in DC who have run things pretty much their own way for years. Even now, I see the remaining Koch brother teaming up with George Soros to fund a new venture.

    I think that has it backwards. Bill Kristol is a world class fool who’s managed to go through his adult life without learning from experience but, let’s face it, The Weekly Standard represented his thinking. I think the same for the variety of viewpoints at NR, whether I agree with them or not.

    • #12
    • January 17, 2020, at 5:55 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  13. Petty Boozswha Member

    I disagree with the thrust of this piece but would like to argue with the narrower idea that Jonah has sold out for filthy $$$ and betrayed the obviously true conservative MAGA path. I think Jonah sincerely believes what he says because I believe the same things. Jonah has undoubtedly sacrificed millions of dollars by not capitulating to Trumpkinism, his bookings for speaking engagements alone have gone down that much. It would have been a natural transition for him to take over Charles Krauthammer’s permanent seat on The Fox Report except he no longer toed the party line. I think he wants to hire independent reporters and fill the niche he has described, you have to have some known quantities at the roll out.

    • #13
    • January 17, 2020, at 6:00 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  14. Hoyacon Member

    Petty Boozswha (View Comment):

    Jonah has undoubtedly sacrificed millions of dollars by not capitulating to Trumpkinism, his bookings for speaking engagements alone have gone down that much. 

    Link?

     

    • #14
    • January 17, 2020, at 6:16 PM PST
    • 1 like
  15. Petty Boozswha Member

    Hoyacon (View Comment):

    Petty Boozswha (View Comment):

    Jonah has undoubtedly sacrificed millions of dollars by not capitulating to Trumpkinism, his bookings for speaking engagements alone have gone down that much.

    Link?

     

    Jonah has said it several times when dealing with this charge on his podcasts, but I haven’t audited his contracts with the speaker’s bureau, so it could all be a big lie. If he were on Fox daily that would be worth a substantial amount in and of itself. If you don’t want to believe me that’s your privilege, we used to have a lot more trust around here, but ETTD.

    • #15
    • January 17, 2020, at 6:24 PM PST
    • Like
  16. MichaelKennedy Coolidge

    Maybe if Jonah’s booking are collapsing, he should get a hint.

    • #16
    • January 17, 2020, at 6:30 PM PST
    • 5 likes
  17. Hoyacon Member

    Petty Boozswha (View Comment):

    Hoyacon (View Comment):

    Petty Boozswha (View Comment):

    Jonah has undoubtedly sacrificed millions of dollars by not capitulating to Trumpkinism, his bookings for speaking engagements alone have gone down that much.

    Link?

     

    Jonah has said it several times when dealing with this charge on his podcasts, but I haven’t audited his contracts with the speaker’s bureau, so it could all be a big lie. If he were on Fox daily that would be worth a substantial amount in and of itself. If you don’t want to believe me that’s your privilege, we used to have a lot more trust around here, but ETTD.

    Sorry if I have this penchant for supporting evidence when I read the self-serving. So no link? We’ll just accept what Jonah said, whatever that was.

     

    • #17
    • January 17, 2020, at 6:48 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  18. Jdetente Member

    Petty Boozswha (View Comment):

    I disagree with the thrust of this piece but would like to argue with the narrower idea that Jonah has sold out for filthy $$$ and betrayed the obviously true conservative MAGA path. I think Jonah sincerely believes what he says because I believe the same things. Jonah has undoubtedly sacrificed millions of dollars by not capitulating to Trumpkinism, his bookings for speaking engagements alone have gone down that much. It would have been a natural transition for him to take over Charles Krauthammer’s permanent seat on The Fox Report except he no longer toed the party line. I think he wants to hire independent reporters and fill the niche he has described, you have to have some known quantities at the roll out.

    I don’t think Jonah and Hayes are in it for the money. They are doing this because they are “political eunuchs” (as VDH stated on another podcast). So part of what you said rings true to me…they have fallen out of favor and their influence within the established outlets has diminished so they needed to seek out their own platform. Not sure who the deep pockets are keeping the enterprise afloat but most likely it is someone who wants a return to the good ol’ days.

    • #18
    • January 17, 2020, at 6:48 PM PST
    • 7 likes
  19. Hoyacon Member

    Jdetente (View Comment):

    Petty Boozswha (View Comment):

    I disagree with the thrust of this piece but would like to argue with the narrower idea that Jonah has sold out for filthy $$$ and betrayed the obviously true conservative MAGA path. I think Jonah sincerely believes what he says because I believe the same things. Jonah has undoubtedly sacrificed millions of dollars by not capitulating to Trumpkinism, his bookings for speaking engagements alone have gone down that much. It would have been a natural transition for him to take over Charles Krauthammer’s permanent seat on The Fox Report except he no longer toed the party line. I think he wants to hire independent reporters and fill the niche he has described, you have to have some known quantities at the roll out.

    I don’t think Jonah and Hayes are in it for the money. They are doing this because they are “political eunuchs” (as VDH stated on another podcast). So part of what you said rings true to me…they have fallen out of favor and their influence within the established outlets has diminished so they needed to seek out their own platform. Not sure who the deep pockets are keeping the enterprise afloat but it most likely it is someone who wants a return to the good ol’ days.

    Query whether their “influence” on an established platform would still be greater than on wherever they’ve ended up. Hayes had little choice since The Weekly Standard went away. Jonah, on the other hand, didn’t have to unless he had a hidden desire to go full Bulwark where the true believers could claim he’d lost “millions” of dollars. :)

    • #19
    • January 17, 2020, at 7:21 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  20. DonG (skeptic) Coolidge

    TDS has ruined so many minds….

    • #20
    • January 17, 2020, at 7:30 PM PST
    • 7 likes
  21. Jon1979 Lincoln

    I’d say the difference between The Bulwark and The Dispatch at the moment is that the latter has been populated by people who have a passionate dislike for Trump, but not to the point that he owns their ideological beliefs lock, stock and barrel — i.e., they might grumble a little about being on the same side of an argument as Trump, but they won’t abandon those beliefs simply because Trump is supporting them. Too many people at The Bulwark treat their supposed core ideological beliefs prior to 2015 as if they now have cooties because they’ve been favorably spoken about by the president (Jonah might deduct style points from Trump based on the idea that Trump can’t explain why he’s supporting some conservative position, but that’s still better than Bill Kristol’s Twitter feed over the past three years, where his loathing of Trump has made him come out against a number of things, like tax cuts or Brett Kavanaugh, that were only opposed because of the guy who was supporting them).

    But overall, yeah, what Jonah and Stephen Hayes said they wanted to do with The Dispatch when they announced it 11 months ago still isn’t what The Dispatch is yet, as far as new reporting goes. Content is still along the lines of paid punditry, where your decision on whether or not to shell out the $10 a month depends on how compelling a group of punditeers you think the site has gathered. Until they start getting people to talk about new information in their stories, as opposed to simply talking about what they said about other peoples’ stories, there’s not that much to make The Dispatch stand out from the rest of the “Will Pundit for Cash” websites out there.

    • #21
    • January 17, 2020, at 9:28 PM PST
    • 11 likes
  22. Franco Member
    Franco Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    rgbact (View Comment):

    Theres just no 3 Trump “intellectuals” that can stack up with Jonah, Hayes, and French. Admit it. Just listening to them all on a podcast is gold. So, enjoy the intellectual also rans Kurt Schlicter, Mollie Hemingway, and Ahmari whats his face. TownHall is charging about $90 and they don’t have even one person that ranks with those 3. Just a bunch of Trumper lightweights throwing out the daily low grade red meat. You can hire fresh college grads for that game.

    Victor Davis Hanson. That’s three right there. Or equivalent to three.

    Jonah is a lightweight compared to him. I don’t even know the other two very well. Of course stipulating there is some extra value in having “intellectuals” on your side in these matters. They haven’t done too well in general. And if you want to play that game, the liberals and leftists have us all beat. I won’t name names.

    But to fil out your insipid challenge there’s Larry Arn, Michael Anton, Angelo Codevilla and Conrad Black. Guess you don’t go outside your bubble much…

     

    • #22
    • January 18, 2020, at 4:01 AM PST
    • 8 likes
  23. MichaelKennedy Coolidge

    rgbact (View Comment):

    Theres just no 3 Trump “intellectuals” that can stack up with Jonah, Hayes, and French. Admit it. Just listening to them all on a podcast is gold. So, enjoy the intellectual also rans Kurt Schlicter, Mollie Hemingway, and Ahmari whats his face. TownHall is charging about $90 and they don’t have even one person that ranks with those 3. Just a bunch of Trumper lightweights throwing out the daily low grade red meat. You can hire fresh college grads for that game.

     

    Speaking of hate.

    • #23
    • January 18, 2020, at 5:14 AM PST
    • 6 likes
  24. MichaelKennedy Coolidge

    Petty Boozswha (View Comment):

    I disagree with the thrust of this piece but would like to argue with the narrower idea that Jonah has sold out for filthy $$$ and betrayed the obviously true conservative MAGA path. I think Jonah sincerely believes what he says because I believe the same things. Jonah has undoubtedly sacrificed millions of dollars by not capitulating to Trumpkinism, his bookings for speaking engagements alone have gone down that much. It would have been a natural transition for him to take over Charles Krauthammer’s permanent seat on The Fox Report except he no longer toed the party line. I think he wants to hire independent reporters and fill the niche he has described, you have to have some known quantities at the roll out.

    I would call the collapse of his public support a “hint.”

    • #24
    • January 18, 2020, at 5:15 AM PST
    • 4 likes
  25. MichaelKennedy Coolidge

    As far as intellectual support for Trump’s ideas, I would say Codevilla and add Steve Bannon.

    https://spectator.org/americas-ruling-class/

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pm5xxlajTW0

    Jonah Goldberg’s “Liberal Fascism” was great but he has gone along trying to be a sort of political humorist and it was not all that attractive. I quit reading his emailed “newsletter” which seemed to be more about his dog. The times have passed him by. The Republican Party is no long the Washington Generals watching the Globetrotters run off with the prizes.

    • #25
    • January 18, 2020, at 5:23 AM PST
    • 6 likes
  26. Franco Member
    Franco Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    MichaelKennedy (View Comment):

    As far as intellectual support for Trump’s ideas, I would say Codevilla and add Steve Bannon.

    https://spectator.org/americas-ruling-class/

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pm5xxlajTW0

    Jonah Goldberg’s “Liberal Fascism” was great but he has gone along trying to be a sort of political humorist and it was not all that attractive. I quit reading his emailed “newsletter” which seemed to be more about his dog. The times have passed him by. The Republican Party is no long the Washington Generals watching the Globetrotters run off with the prizes.

    Seconded on Bannon. And realistically how many ‘ intellectuals’ have the humility to entertain the tenets of populism? It’s a dirty word to them that comes pre-demonized. But I’ll tell you who I think were the quintessential populists: Our founders.

     

    • #26
    • January 18, 2020, at 6:37 AM PST
    • 4 likes
  27. rgbact Member

    Franco (View Comment):

    rgbact (View Comment):

    Theres just no 3 Trump “intellectuals” that can stack up with Jonah, Hayes, and French. Admit it. Just listening to them all on a podcast is gold. So, enjoy the intellectual also rans Kurt Schlicter, Mollie Hemingway, and Ahmari whats his face. TownHall is charging about $90 and they don’t have even one person that ranks with those 3. Just a bunch of Trumper lightweights throwing out the daily low grade red meat. You can hire fresh college grads for that game.

    Victor Davis Hanson. That’s three right there. Or equivalent to three.

    Jonah is a lightweight compared to him. I don’t even know the other two very well. Of course stipulating there is some extra value in having “intellectuals” on your side in these matters.

    But to fil out your insipid challenge there’s Larry Arn, Michael Anton, Angelo Codevilla and Conrad Black.

    Speaking with a calm soothing voice doesn’t make you an intellectual. I get less impressed with VDH everytime I hear him. He may just be a hack. Those other 4 guys I don’t even know. Didn’t the one guy write a “Flight 93” essay to encourage people to vote for Trump? Yeesh. Thats the opposite of intellectual.

    The reason I think being “intellectual” matters is that it justifies higher fees for a political website. Thats what you’re paying for. Political porn after all is cheap and easy to produce by even college kids. If thats all you want….then you shouldn’t be paying for it imo.

    • #27
    • January 18, 2020, at 6:47 AM PST
    • 1 like
  28. Franco Member
    Franco Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    rgbact (View Comment):

    Franco (View Comment):

    rgbact (View Comment):

    Theres just no 3 Trump “intellectuals” that can stack up with Jonah, Hayes, and French. Admit it. Just listening to them all on a podcast is gold. So, enjoy the intellectual also rans Kurt Schlicter, Mollie Hemingway, and Ahmari whats his face. TownHall is charging about $90 and they don’t have even one person that ranks with those 3. Just a bunch of Trumper lightweights throwing out the daily low grade red meat. You can hire fresh college grads for that game.

    Victor Davis Hanson. That’s three right there. Or equivalent to three.

    Jonah is a lightweight compared to him. I don’t even know the other two very well. Of course stipulating there is some extra value in having “intellectuals” on your side in these matters.

    But to fil out your insipid challenge there’s Larry Arn, Michael Anton, Angelo Codevilla and Conrad Black.

    Speaking with a calm soothing voice doesn’t make you an intellectual. I get less impressed with VDH everytime I hear him. He may just be a hack. Those other 4 guys I don’t even know. Didn’t the one guy write a “Flight 93” essay to encourage people to vote for Trump? Yeesh. Thats the opposite of intellectual.

    The reason I think being “intellectual” matters is that it justifies higher fees for a political website. Thats what you’re paying for. Political porn after all is cheap and easy to produce by even college kids. If thats all you want….then you shouldn’t be paying for it imo.

    Ok, you really stepped in it. VDH is more than a soothing voice. Read any of his books.

    And I venture you don’t even know what an intellectual is judging by your tautology that anyone who recommends Trump can’t be an intellectual. Do you know what a tautology is? Probably not, otherwise you wouldn’t have tried to employ one when trying to make a case for your intellectuals.

    As to porn, some of the very best porn is *free. Sorry have to pay for it.

    *( I’m citing my lovely wife… okay not exactly free…) but I’ve heard also that there are free web sites, only hearsay of course…

     

    • #28
    • January 18, 2020, at 7:05 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  29. DrewInWisconsin, Influencer Coolidge

    Hoyacon (View Comment):
    My sense is that The Dispatch (and perhaps The Bulwark) exist on the basis of “Hey, why not?”

    The Bulwark exists because of the funding of a left-wing billionaire. Not entirely sure whose deep pockets fund The Dispatch.

    • #29
    • January 18, 2020, at 8:11 AM PST
    • 5 likes
  30. DrewInWisconsin, Influencer Coolidge

    Jdetente (View Comment):
    Not sure who the deep pockets are keeping the enterprise afloat but most likely it is someone who wants a return to the good ol’ days.

    When Republicans “lost with dignity” and used those losses to fill their coffers by fundraising on promises they never intended to keep.

    • #30
    • January 18, 2020, at 8:15 AM PST
    • 8 likes