The Wrestlers

This week, we mix it up across a wide variety of views with guests from all over the right side of the ideological map. First up, AEI’s Christina Hoff Sommers, author of The War Against Boys: How Misguided Policies are Harming Our Young Men. She wrote a Tweet this past week that set social media on fire. So we talk about that. Then, the main event: Charlie Sykes is a longtime time talk radio host in Wisconsin and is the newly minted host the The Daily Standard podcast right here on Ricochet. Charlie and our own Peter Robinson get into on the current occupant of the Oval Office, and well, let’s just say they don’t see eye-to-eye. But they do give a master class in how to disagree civilly. Take notes, people.

Music from this week’s podcast: Why Can’t We Be Friends by War

 

 

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  1. EDISONPARKS Member
    EDISONPARKS Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    • #1
    • February 16, 2018, at 6:14 PM PST
    • Like
  2. James Lileks Contributor

    HEAR THE PODCAST YOU TURKEY NECKS

    • #2
    • February 16, 2018, at 6:31 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  3. EDISONPARKS Member
    EDISONPARKS Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    James Lileks (View Comment):
    HEAR THE PODCAST YOU TURKEY NECKS

    • #3
    • February 16, 2018, at 7:56 PM PST
    • Like
  4. DocJay Inactive

    Lots and lots of erroneous assumptions from your last guest. I suspect his belief system is held by a small percentage. As if all gop who aren’t lobbing grenades are drooling sycophants?

    • #4
    • February 16, 2018, at 9:16 PM PST
    • 20 likes
  5. Peter Robinson Founder

    DocJay (View Comment):
    Lots and lots of erroneous assumptions from your last guest. I suspect his belief system is held by a small percentage. As if all gop who aren’t lobbing grenades are drooling sycophants?

    Thank you, DocJay. My view exactly.

    • #5
    • February 16, 2018, at 10:12 PM PST
    • 13 likes
  6. Karen Humiston Member
    Karen Humiston Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Wow. That was unpleasant. What on earth turned the usually affable Peter into such a rude, obnoxious boor? Over and over, he would not let Charlie get two words out before attacking him with more and more sputtering outrage. (Not to mention James being utterly shut out of the conversation.) Charlie Sykes speaks for a lot of us. I don’t agree with everything he says, and I can appreciate that Peter sees things differently, but can’t a guest on your show be treated with just a little civility? Can he be allowed to finish (or even begin) making his point before being shouted down? Isn’t Ricochet supposed to be all about civility? This was not civil. Peter owes an apology to both Charlie Sykes and to the listeners. I’ve been a listener to this podcast since the very beginning, and this is the first time I ever felt so disgusted I want to call it quits.

    • #6
    • February 16, 2018, at 10:53 PM PST
    • 12 likes
  7. Karen Humiston Member
    Karen Humiston Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    DocJay (View Comment):
    Lots and lots of erroneous assumptions from your last guest. I suspect his belief system is held by a small percentage. As if all gop who aren’t lobbing grenades are drooling sycophants?

    He did not say that all GOP who aren’t lobbing grenades are drooling sycophants (as you might have heard more clearly if Peter hadn’t continuously interrupted and shouted him down). He said that there are a disturbing number of people who seem to have abandoned their previously-held principles to support Trump. That is a fact, and it concerns a lot of us. Peter said that nobody is defending Trump’s behavior or his more stupid comments. Now that is an erroneous assumption. Does he ever watch Fox News? There are drooling sycophants as well as grenade-lobbers. I think the great majority of us are in the middle — pleased with the previous year’s policy wins, but deeply disturbed about the president’s character flaws and instability. Just how concerned we are may vary widely — but for God’s sake, can’t we discuss it civilly?

    • #7
    • February 16, 2018, at 11:05 PM PST
    • 9 likes
  8. DocJay Inactive

    Karen Humiston (View Comment):

    DocJay (View Comment):
    Lots and lots of erroneous assumptions from your last guest. I suspect his belief system is held by a small percentage. As if all gop who aren’t lobbing grenades are drooling sycophants?

    He did not say that all GOP who aren’t lobbing grenades are drooling sycophants (as you might have heard more clearly if Peter hadn’t continuously interrupted and shouted him down). He said that there are a disturbing number of people who seem to have abandoned their previously-held principles to support Trump. That is a fact, and it concerns a lot of us. Peter said that nobody is defending Trump’s behavior or his more stupid comments. Now that is an erroneous assumption. Does he ever watch Fox News? There are drooling sycophants as well as grenade-lobbers. I think the great majority of us are in the middle — pleased with the previous year’s policy wins, but deeply disturbed about the president’s character flaws and instability. Just how concerned we are may vary widely — but for God’s sake, can’t we discuss it civilly?

    It’s nice to see Peter passionate. Perhaps he took some issues personally based on the intensity of the issue or perhaps he heard unsubstantiated assumptions or exaggerations he chose to challenge. If interrupting was his normal habit that’s one thing, but it’s not. He took some measure of umbrage to intentional jabs.

    I’ll listen again. Truly. I’ll post on this thread after my wife and I listen. I’ll try it from your perspective as best as I can.

    . My BFF, a Colonel and Judge is not a fan of the president, although he is a conservative. I get along with him just fine.

    • #8
    • February 17, 2018, at 12:26 AM PST
    • 12 likes
  9. RufusRJones Member

    Karen Humiston (View Comment):
    He said that there are a disturbing number of people who seem to have abandoned their previously-held principles

    Like what? Good government?

    • #9
    • February 17, 2018, at 2:06 AM PST
    • 2 likes
  10. Al Kennedy Member
    Al Kennedy Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Peter Robinson (View Comment):
    As if all gop who aren’t lobbing grenades are drooling sycophants?

    @peterrobinson Peter, I think you underestimate the effect of one of President Trump’s character traits: his inability to entertain any form of criticism. Consider the cases of Senators Flake and Corker. They have supported the president’s agenda over 85% of the time. However they occasionally publically criticized Trump and became targets of the president’s anger on Twitter. However Senator Graham and many others whose voting record is almost identical to Flake and Corker’s but who did not publically criticize the president don’t receive the same abuse on Twitter. My dictionary defines sycophant as: “a person who acts obsequiously toward someone important in order to gain advantage or a person who ties to win a person’s favor by flattering them”. These Republican senators who do not criticize the president when they think he is wrong do not want Trump actively working against their next re-election attempt. I think Charlie Sykes is correct. A failure to criticize something you disagree with is a form of acceptance. These senators may not be “drooling”, but they are sycophants along with many other Republicans.

    • #10
    • February 17, 2018, at 4:18 AM PST
    • 4 likes
  11. filmklassik Member

    Wait a minute. Peter wouldn’t unmute himself even to bid Charlie Sykes goodbye?

    What excuse will Peter offer for this kind of juvenile, ungracious behavior? We know an excuse is coming, of course, but what will it be?

    It’s time to play America’s favorite new game show: Predict Peter’s Excuse!

    I’ll start:

    I think it will be: “I went to hit the unmute button and — my hand to God — the button got stuck!”

    Or:

    “An urgent call came in while I was on mute! I had to take it — it was a family emergency!!”

    (The “family emergency” one is most people’s go-to in these situations. Granted, it’s not terribly imaginative, but most folks are reluctant to question it on the 1 in 20 chance it’s legit. In other words it’s lame, but safe).

    Over to you.

    • #11
    • February 17, 2018, at 5:25 AM PST
    • 2 likes
  12. ToryWarWriter Thatcher

    Thanks @peterrobinson for pushing back against that hyperbolic nonsense. Bending the knee to orange haired god. Ugh.

    • #12
    • February 17, 2018, at 6:14 AM PST
    • 25 likes
  13. DocJay Inactive

    We are diving through the desert right now on our way to Death Valley. The sunrise is a bright orange and there’s low lying horizontal cloud wisps. We are passing through Hawthorne , a little Nevada cow town with an Army base. It’s as if the orange god king is smiling on this forgotten corner of America. These people love America and they send their sons in high percentages to serve our country. Most folks in these places are happy to have a president they feel loves our country and isn’t laughing at them.

    I thank God Trump is my son’s Commander In Chief, regardless of his many personal flaws. The price of funding the military was not addressing the debt bomb. If that deters us from another senseless war it will be worth our fiscal insanity we are saddled with. Did the president have an option for this budget when military funding was his number one priority ?

    • #13
    • February 17, 2018, at 6:31 AM PST
    • 12 likes
  14. Quake Voter Inactive

    Thanks Peter. Sometimes it takes some gentlemanly passion to prick the preening bubble of the last remaining conservative men of principle, probity and valor peddling their anti-Trump piecework at MSNBC and the NYT.

    Flake scored an 18% approval rating with Arizona voters after his lefty-celebrated onanistic book tour. Blackburn is beating Corker 2-1 in polls this week. Why?

    Sykes knows: conservatives have lost their minds (that’s his title). All except Sykes, Rubin, Kristol, Will, Goldberg, Hayes and Stephens are unhinged, amoral and utter lacking in principle. (Of course, as Trump helps Kristol to rediscover his “inner socialist”, “inner feminist” and “inner liberal” that is a process of discovery not abandonment. Got it.)

    Supporting Trump over Hillary was a question of practical political judgement for conservatives. I did and 15 months later it seems like the right call. In 4 years it may turn out disastrously.

    Sorry, but claiming that Never Trump conservatives made a practical political mistake and suffer from an excess of pride is not at all equivalent to their claiming that my support of Trump indicates personal craziness, lack of principles and cowardice.

    Thanks again Peter.

    • #14
    • February 17, 2018, at 6:45 AM PST
    • 26 likes
  15. EDISONPARKS Member
    EDISONPARKS Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Quake Voter (View Comment):
    Thanks Peter. Sometimes it takes some gentlemanly passion to prick the preening bubble of the last remaining conservative men of principle, probity and valor peddling their anti-Trump piecework at MSNBC and the NYT.

    Flake scored an 18% approval rating with Arizona voters after his lefty-celebrated onanistic book tour. Blackburn is beating Corker 2-1 in polls this week. Why?

    Sykes knows: conservatives have lost their minds (that’s his title). All except Sykes, Rubin, Kristol, Will, Goldberg, Hayes and Stephens are unhinged, amoral and utter lacking in principle. (Of course, as Trump helps Kristol to rediscover his “inner socialist”, “inner feminist” and “inner liberal” that is a process of discovery not abandonment. Got it.)

    Supporting Trump over Hillary was a question of practical political judgement for conservatives. I did and 15 months later it seems like the right call. In 4 years it may turn out disastrously.

    Sorry, but claiming that Never Trump conservatives made a practical political mistake and suffer from an excess of pride is not at all equivalent to their claiming that my support of Trump indicates personal craziness, lack of principles and cowardice.

    Thanks again Peter.

    Well said! My sentiments exactly.

    Quake Voter body slams NT’s:

    • #15
    • February 17, 2018, at 6:50 AM PST
    • 7 likes
  16. Full Size Tabby Member

    The Democrats are succeeding in getting Republicans to spend more time tearing each other apart than Republicans do attacking the idiotic, unworkable, and in some cases evil ideas of the Democrats.

    If the Republicans who are constantly attacking President Trump (and the voters who voted for him, whether reluctantly or enthusiastically) spent some of that energy attacking Democratic ideas, we’d probably make more progress.

    • #16
    • February 17, 2018, at 6:52 AM PST
    • 15 likes
  17. RufusRJones Member

    I don’t really care if someone is never Trump or anti-trump if they are actually saying things that would improve the regressive Keynesian economy we have and/or fight cultural Marxism. I put all of the National Review people in that category. Jonah Goldberg actually does have a very good policy ideas.

    Bill Kristol is a big government RINO Keynesian moralist. Some of these guys never ever say anything about economics, It’s all about “improving” government and acting civil while the wars drag on and on. They never say anything about identity politics as it affects the typical Trump voter. People are sick of it.

    Plus look at Murkowski and Collins. Why couldn’t the GOP get ready for how they were going to vote on Obamacare? I say it’s because 75% of the Republicans are just John Kasich-style vote buying RINO central planners, Kasich is just honest about it. So people want Trump to get them their cut of the Keynesian stupidity.

    Finally, look at the angles of the debt to GDP ratios since Ronald Reagan. Trust me no one cares, they just want their cut.

    • #17
    • February 17, 2018, at 7:08 AM PST
    • 11 likes
  18. ToryWarWriter Thatcher

    Bill Kristol is a Neo-con and he and his fellow Girondins are on their way back home to the Left where they came from.

    • #18
    • February 17, 2018, at 7:26 AM PST
    • 2 likes
  19. RufusRJones Member

    Quake Voter (View Comment):
    Flake scored an 18% approval rating with Arizona voters after his lefty-celebrated onanistic book tour

    I wish someone would write a a long sophisticated article about the trajectory of Flake’s career. I’m not an expert, but didn’t he go from libertarian to whiny moralist?

    Quake Voter (View Comment):
    (Of course, as Trump helps Kristol to rediscover his “inner socialist”, “inner feminist” and “inner liberal” that is a process of discovery not abandonment. Got it.)

    Kristol doesn’t care about why people need redistribution or why the government is running out of money. He just wants what he wants.

    • #19
    • February 17, 2018, at 7:32 AM PST
    • 6 likes
  20. RufusRJones Member

    I finally have something to complain about. I can’t believe some of my subscription money supports Charlie Sykes.

    If you want to support something new, listen to Problematic Women. I’m more libertarian, but that is a great podcast.

    • #20
    • February 17, 2018, at 7:36 AM PST
    • 6 likes
  21. Fred Houstan Member

    filmklassik (View Comment):
    Wait a minute. Peter wouldn’t unmute himself even to bid Charlie Sykes goodbye?

    What excuse will Peter offer for this kind of juvenile, ungracious behavior? We know an excuse is coming, of course, but what will it be?

    Are you being facetious?

    • #21
    • February 17, 2018, at 7:55 AM PST
    • 1 like
  22. Fred Houstan Member

    I relished hearing Sykes and @peterrobinson go toe-to-toe. The only pro-or-anti side I’m on is pro-passionate-debate, and this episode has it in spades, safe spaces be damned. I believe Peter had the better of it.

    And Christina Hoff Sommer’s was wonderful as well, especially as I work with my 14-year-old son on the life ahead of him.

    And, of course, the mellifluous rudder that is @jameslileks remains the glue that holds it all together.

    • #22
    • February 17, 2018, at 8:03 AM PST
    • 6 likes
  23. Quake Voter Inactive

    Fred Houstan (View Comment):
    And, of course, the mellifluous rudder that is @jameslileks remains the glue that holds it all together.

    Okay, this might be a first: Mr. Lileks reminds me of Wilt Chamberlain.

    Sometimes he wants to score and the slam dunks follow. Sometimes he wants to lead the league is assists and he dishes off to put the points on the board.

    • #23
    • February 17, 2018, at 8:12 AM PST
    • 4 likes
  24. Basil Fawlty Member
    Basil Fawlty Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    How glibly Mr. Sykes plays the race card.

    • #24
    • February 17, 2018, at 8:19 AM PST
    • 14 likes
  25. EDISONPARKS Member
    EDISONPARKS Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Charlie Sykes and others make the claim that the (R) embrace of Trump will damage the Conservative movement for many years into the future.

    While it is possible they are correct, I would suggest any damage to the Conservative movement and (R)’s would be short term.

    First, Sykes assumes the voting public are as engaged politically as himself and knuckleheads like me (Ricocheti) who pay money to read, listen, and comment upon political and cultural issues. Your average Joe would rather watch infomercials all day than engage in politics in their spare time.

    Second, for better or worse, we all have short attention spans and the MSM and culture see to it that as soon as one major news item is mined for all it’s worth, then we’re on to the next. The “Trump is bad for Conservatives” will certainly be used as a cudgel for a time, then it will get old and our detractors will find a new shinier weapon with which to bash Conservatives over the head.

    Lastly, I believe the Trump Presidency is a one time event caused by the incredibly insane decision of the the (D)’s to force feed upon (D) voters, Hillary Clinton, the most corrupt, disingenuous human to ever run for Presidency. Add to that HRC was a terrible candidate offering no stated agenda who came off as aloof, arrogant and entitled (… and it was obvious HRC was physically unwell to boot) …..and we must not forget the Russian collusion of course ….

    Trump won because, to many, the alternative was much, much worse, not because some Conservatives abandoned their conservative principles.

    • #25
    • February 17, 2018, at 8:23 AM PST
    • 8 likes
  26. Blue Yeti Admin

    filmklassik (View Comment):
    Wait a minute. Peter wouldn’t unmute himself even to bid Charlie Sykes goodbye?

    What excuse will Peter offer for this kind of juvenile, ungracious behavior? We know an excuse is coming, of course, but what will it be?

    It’s time to play America’s favorite new game show: Predict Peter’s M.C.,Excuse!

    I’ll start:

    I think it will be: “I went to hit the unmute button and — my hand to God — the button got stuck!”

    Or:

    “An urgent call came in while I was on mute! I had to take it — it was a family emergency!!”

    (The “family emergency” one is most people’s go-to in these situations. Granted, it’s not terribly imaginative, but most folks are reluctant to question it on the 1 in 20 chance it’s legit. In other words it’s lame, but safe).

    Over to you.

    The show ran way long (in addition to this longer than usual segment, we had some technical issue at the start of the show) and Peter had to depart right after Charlie’s segment. James did note this after Charlie left.

    I think this debate, while obviously passionate, mirrors the debate going on in the party at large and is a valuable one to air out every so often. My thanks to Peter and Charlie for putting themselves out there. It’s not easy.

    • #26
    • February 17, 2018, at 9:40 AM PST
    • 19 likes
  27. EDISONPARKS Member
    EDISONPARKS Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Blue Yeti (View Comment):

    filmklassik (View Comment):
    Wait a minute. Peter wouldn’t unmute himself even to bid Charlie Sykes goodbye?

    What excuse will Peter offer for this kind of juvenile, ungracious behavior? We know an excuse is coming, of course, but what will it be?

    It’s time to play America’s favorite new game show: Predict Peter’s M.C.,Excuse!

    I’ll start:

    I think it will be: “I went to hit the unmute button and — my hand to God — the button got stuck!”

    Or:

    “An urgent call came in while I was on mute! I had to take it — it was a family emergency!!”

    (The “family emergency” one is most people’s go-to in these situations. Granted, it’s not terribly imaginative, but most folks are reluctant to question it on the 1 in 20 chance it’s legit. In other words it’s lame, but safe).

    Over to you.

    The show ran way long (in addition to this longer than usual segment, we had some technical issue at the start of the show) and Peter had to depart right after Charlie’s segment. James did note this acre Charlie left.

    I think this debate, while obviously passionate mirrors the debate going on in the party at large

    Or: Peter will enlist Blue Yeti to conjure up some lame “technical issue” nonsense and somehow manage to pull James under the bus as well.

    • #27
    • February 17, 2018, at 9:44 AM PST
    • Like
  28. Blue Yeti Admin

    EDISONPARKS (View Comment):

    Blue Yeti (View Comment):

    Or: Peter will enlist Blue Yeti to conjure up some lame “technical issue” nonsense and somehow manage to pull James under the bus as well.

    Conspiracy theories are in violation of the Code of Conduct.

    • #28
    • February 17, 2018, at 9:47 AM PST
    • 13 likes
  29. Mate De Inactive

    They should have called this podcast “sweeping generalizations”

    • #29
    • February 17, 2018, at 9:51 AM PST
    • 7 likes
  30. JuliaBlaschke Coolidge

    EDISONPARKS (View Comment):
    Trump won because, to many, the alternative was much, much worse, not because some Conservatives abandoned their conservative principles.

    But why did he win in the primaries?

    • #30
    • February 17, 2018, at 9:54 AM PST
    • 3 likes