The Victor Davis Hanson Interview

 

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Welcome to the Harvard Lunch Club Political Podcast for March 21, 2017, it’s the Victor Davis Hanson Interview edition of the show.

This week we have (a propos of the title of the podcast, i.e. The Victor Davis Hanson Interview edition) Victor Davis Hanson from Stanford and the Hoover Institution and National Review and many other esteemed places as our guest. We talk about North Korea and the strategy of Trump tweets and the media trying to somehow catch up. And then we get into the real red meat: what gives with the #NeverTrumpers? (remember them?). This discussion is worth downloading the podcast all by itself.

Then, the main stream media continues to look like Wily Coyote chasing the Road Runner, or Porky Pig trying to best Bugs Bunny – just beside themselves with ire. They are going to *some* *day* nail that sucker. Some day Trump will apologize. Some day he will get his comeuppance! George Stephanopoulos cannot believe that Trump accused the former President, the sainted Obama, of a felony!!! Doesn’t matter that the Trump was – as is evident to anyone paying attention – quoting the New York Times headline in his tweet about wire tapping. We’ve got seven plus more years of this. Will they continue screeching like this all that time?

We will have our shower thoughts as usual and this week’s hidden gem is Patti Smyth’s cover of the Tom Waits song, Downtown Train, released thirty years ago.

A Propos of our shower thoughts, there is this (Venn’s pi compass):

And, want to know where you birthday first appears in pi? (you know you do) Check out the pi finder here.

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There are 45 comments.

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  1. Quake Voter Inactive
    Quake Voter
    @QuakeVoter

    Tom Meyer, Ed. (View Comment):

    Quake Voter (View Comment):
    There are still many NeverTrump conservative writers; more than a few very vocal and very substantial NeverTrump Ricochet members.

    Again, I can think of people who are reflexively anti-Trump. If they (or others) still describe themselves as “NeverTrump”:

    1. It’s escaped my notice; and
    2. I personally think it’s a foolish label to cling to.

    As I joked a while back, the only time I seem to hear the phrase “NeverTrumpers” these days, it’s usually proceeded by the word “you.”

    Maybe we are hung up on semantics then.  I agree that NeverTrump as a self-description today is rather peculiar and counterproductive, but if you were a vocal NeverTrumper and are today reflexively anti-Trump then I don’t feel I have to accept your rebranding or preference for tactical no-labelling.  You are a NeverTrumper.

    As for seeing the brand discussed proudly, just let Dana Gould drop another “Come on you people are too smart to support this maniac” post and the NeverTrump merit badges get flashed immediately.

    • #31
  2. ClosetSubversive Inactive
    ClosetSubversive
    @ClosetSubversive

    Michael Stopa (View Comment):
    So Closet, the “can’t get past it” thing is true. I am still angry at them. Whenever I meet one-on-one with any of them I find a way through to real communication. People like Rob Long (and many Ricochet people) I deeply respect because he/they struggled to see both sides. There are many in the professional commentariat who, I believe, never did.

    Perhaps you should consider talking to someone and I say that in all seriousness.  I appreciate that you are willing to confess your inability to “get past it”, but you’re doing more than simply “not getting past it”.  You’re feeding and perpetuating it in yourself and others.  It may be satisfying to you on some level but ultimately is it really good for you or anybody else?

     

    Anyway, I like the podcast and look forward to the day when Trump vs Non-Trump ceases to be a topic.

    • #32
  3. Tom Meyer, Ed. Contributor
    Tom Meyer, Ed.
    @tommeyer

    Michael Stopa (View Comment):

    So Closet, the “can’t get past it” thing is true. I am still angry at them.

    @michaelstopa, honesty appreciated. I think a lot folks on both sides of the Trump Wars are struggling with this sort of thing, sometimes effectively, sometimes… less less than effectively.

    And yes, that’s included me at times.

    What I encourage everyone to do is to hope for the best in all this; e.g., that everyone puts away their bitterness, that the president and Congress enact conservative reform that we can all be reasonably happy with, and even that the MSM gets its act together and starts behaving somewhat responsibly, etc. We don’t have to be optimistic about these things to hope for them — and I’m not implying that they’re equally likely  — but we should hope for them.

    • #33
  4. Michael Stopa Contributor
    Michael Stopa
    @MichaelStopa

    ClosetSubversive (View Comment):

    Perhaps you should consider talking to someone and I say that in all seriousness. I appreciate that you are willing to confess your inability to “get past it”, but you’re doing more than simply “not getting past it”. You’re feeding and perpetuating it in yourself and others. It may be satisfying to you on some level but ultimately is it really good for you or anybody else?

    Anyway, I like the podcast and look forward to the day when Trump vs Non-Trump ceases to be a topic.

    I don’t need to talk to anyone…they’re just going to tell me I’m crazy, which I already know!

    In fact, I think we are all motivated to some degree by a real or imagined foe. Without our windmills there’d be no reason to saddle up every morning.

    • #34
  5. Tom Meyer, Ed. Contributor
    Tom Meyer, Ed.
    @tommeyer

    Quake Voter (View Comment):
    Maybe we are hung up on semantics then.

    I agree this is semantic disagreement, but when the semantic touches on descriptions of fellow members, I’d say it matters.

    Quake Voter (View Comment):
    Maybe we are hung up on semantics then. I agree that NeverTrump as a self-description today is rather peculiar and counterproductive, but if you were a vocal NeverTrumper and are today reflexively anti-Trump then I don’t feel I have to accept your rebranding or preference for tactical no-labelling. You are a NeverTrumper.

    I get what you’re saying. Just to be clear, my reason for objecting to the continued use of the label is that (IMHO) most folks who were NeverTrump aren’t reflexively anti-Trump.

    To take one easy example, Trump makes the “Good Martini” rather often on the TML (recent examples here, here, here, and here). Jim definitely was NeverTrump and he’s hardly above hitting Trump really hard (Trump makes the “Bad” or “Crazy” martinis quite often as well), but I sure wouldn’t call him reflexive. Most folks who were NeverTrump seem to me to have similarly mixed feelings about the last two months. That includes me.

    • #35
  6. Columbo Member
    Columbo
    @Columbo

    Tom Meyer, Ed. (View Comment):
    As stated previously, we ask members to avoid using denonyms to describe each other, as it tends to get antagonistic. Neutral terms like “Pro-Trump,” “anti-Trump,” and “Trump-skeptic” cause far fewer problems.

    Since I got caught up in this a little, I have a couple of thoughts. First, this idea of “problems” in conversations because there are differences of opinions, gets overblown as a CoC issue. I didn’t flag anything but did provide a different perspective. That’s what a conversation is.

    Secondly, I would suggest that there is this inferred equivalence between the two denonyms used previously on this conversation that is not in any way equivalent. The one regarding the pro-Trump perspective is one assigned by the opposite side and is intentionally derogatory. It was never a self definition of those so maligned. The second one, that gets this same CoC-assigned equivalence, where there is nothing similar, is a phrase that was self-defined by this anti-Trump group. In fact, many of the people posting on this website put together a very glossy national magazine that coined the term and they proudly personally signed such glossy magazine to fully embrace the term as reflecting themselves exactly, and without term limits.

    That they get to say ‘nevermind’ now seems a tad unfair. Carry on.

    • #36
  7. Tom Meyer, Ed. Contributor
    Tom Meyer, Ed.
    @tommeyer

    Columbo (View Comment):
    Secondly, I would suggest that there is this inferred equivalence between the two denonyms used previously on this conversation that is not in any way equivalent.

    Given that the one was redacted and the other discussed by me after explicitly taking off my editors’ hat, I’d say that the proper inference isn’t one of equivalence.

    • #37
  8. Columbo Member
    Columbo
    @Columbo

    Tom Meyer, Ed. (View Comment):

    Columbo (View Comment):
    Secondly, I would suggest that there is this inferred equivalence between the two denonyms used previously on this conversation that is not in any way equivalent.

    Given that one was redacted and the other discussed by me after explicitly taking off my editors’ hat, I’d say that the proper inference isn’t one of equivalence.

    Apologies. I guess that I didn’t read fully through the conversation. My comment specifically quoted and solely related to comment #21.

    • #38
  9. Tom Meyer, Ed. Contributor
    Tom Meyer, Ed.
    @tommeyer

    Columbo (View Comment):

    Apologies. I guess that I didn’t read fully through the conversation. My comment specifically quoted and solely related to comment #21.

    Appreciated.

    Just for the record, I made the redactions/editors’ notes before adding my own commentary at #21. That sequence isn’t as clear after the fact.

    • #39
  10. Columbo Member
    Columbo
    @Columbo

    Tom Meyer, Ed. (View Comment):

    Columbo (View Comment):

    Apologies. I guess that I didn’t read fully through the conversation. My comment specifically quoted and solely related to comment #21.

    Appreciated.

    Just for the record, I made the redactions/editors’ notes before adding my own commentary at #21. That sequence isn’t as clear after the fact.

    • #40
  11. Quake Voter Inactive
    Quake Voter
    @QuakeVoter

    Tom Meyer, Ed. (View Comment):
    To take one easy example, Trump makes the “Good Martini” rather often on the TML (recent examples here, here, here, and here). Jim definitely was NeverTrump and he’s hardly above hitting Trump really hard (Trump makes the “Bad” or “Crazy” martinis quite often as well), but I sure wouldn’t call him reflexive. Most folks who were NeverTrump seem to me to have similarly mixed feelings about the last two months. That includes me.

    Geraghty and Corombos are very easy examples, I agree.  Trump made their good martini often during the election season as well.  In fairness, they focused most of their positive energy on GOP Senate candidates and never let up with their entertaining crazy-Hillary coverage.  They also never indulged in very much McMullin wishful thinking.  The two of them are also funny, self-effacing guys who don’t indulge in much preening whatsoever.

    Ben Shapiro is a good example of a NeverTrumper who calls them straight.  No alliances of convenience with the MSM, The Altantic/Slate crowd, Graham/McCain et al.  No attempts to blame Trump for the GOP’s signature failure to follow through on conservative promises.  No Hamlet poses complaining about his singularly beset predicament like Mr. Goldberg.

    Many NeverTrumpers haven’t gotten over themselves (and in truth we all struggle to get over ourselves).  Many have.

    Trump doesn’t really seem to care.

     

    • #41
  12. Mike LaRoche Inactive
    Mike LaRoche
    @MikeLaRoche

    Michael Stopa (View Comment):

    Quake Voter (View Comment):
    TRIGGER WARNING: NeverTrumpers should skip the four minutes following the 20 minute mark unless you can bear the brilliant, laconic dissection of your disdain by Dr. Hanson. What a sad turn of events that Andrew Breitbart’s “politics is downstream of culture” was proved by the revolt of Acela conservatives.

    Mike’s “They have the same housekeepers” was the perfect punctuation.

    Astonishing that over the past ten days real entitlement reform was begun, deep budget cuts were proposed, CAFE standards shelved, North Korea finally confronted, climate change spending zeroed out, and Neil Gorsuch formally presented for confirmation and the NeverTrump rump still sneers.

    Another great hour of conservative bonhomie.

    Thanks Quake! Easy to make a good podcast with VDH as your guest.

    Just listened to the podcast.  Loved it.

    • #42
  13. Mike LaRoche Inactive
    Mike LaRoche
    @MikeLaRoche

    Loved the closing song, too:

    https://youtu.be/SsZ4Of9wz0E

    • #43
  14. Annefy Member
    Annefy
    @Annefy

    I wish I could flag this entire podcast and flag it hard.

    My ire and offense know no bounds. I am furious and beginning to question every single thing said.

    Adaptation is a great movie? Are you serious?

    (this is from someone who would happily leave my entire family and everything else I love for Chris Cooper)

    Kidding. Great podcast. Every moment with VDH is a moment well spent and you both conducted a great interview.

    But I still hate Adaptation.

    • #44
  15. Michael Stopa Contributor
    Michael Stopa
    @MichaelStopa

    Annefy (View Comment):
    I wish I could flag this entire podcast and flag it hard.

    My ire and offense know no bounds. I am furious and beginning to question every single thing said.

    Adaptation is a great movie? Are you serious?

    (this is from someone who would happily leave my entire family and everything else I love for Chris Cooper)

    Kidding. Great podcast. Every moment with VDH is a moment well spent and you both conducted a great interview.

    But I still hate Adaptation.

    I, for one, haven’t seen it, Annefy. But Todd’s taste in so many things is so appalling I don’t doubt that you are right. :-)

    • #45
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