Tag: Populism

Vin Diesel Arguing in Clinton v. Trump

 

I’ve been comparing Vin Diesel to Stallone over at The Federalist. That’s my beat, manliness and American culture. But I have more things to say about Vin Diesel than fit into that piece. He is successful, neglected, and misunderstood all at once. And he has made the relationship between the promise of success in America and the anguish of manliness a big subject in movies. At the same time, this has become a subject in politics, too, so let’s look at its clearest, most vulgar statement on the matter. Having already written about his major franchise, the Fast and Furious, I want to talk about his minor franchise, Triple X, which had another success earlier this year.

The American audience ignored it, because it’s so obviously a B picture. The worldwide audience liked it much better for much the same reason–the film made $300 million, half in China. The story shows something lots of people want to see: An anti-liberal, anti-globalization ideology. Vin Diesel starts by presenting himself as the champion of third-world kids who love soccer–the game of globalized democracy. He ends up the successful, defiant enemy of the government-tech oligarchy. The antagonist you could call the establishment–evil, treacherous, but undeniably powerful and sophisticated people that secretly run American foreign policy. Vin Diesel’s against the evils of espionage, war, and the surveillance state. How could you not admire him, nay, even love!

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Our favorite Navy Fighter Pilot, @BrentB67 (let’s get him back on Rico!) joins this week’s Whiskey Politics podcast to discuss the current economy. Brent Berarducci of BlackLion Capital Management shares his unique and timely perspective as we talk about the trend towards populism, the U.S. debt, trade protectionism, and just what the heck is happening in Saudi […]

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How Important Is the Nation-State?

 

Today I’ve been reading over the first issue of American Affairs, a new intellectual journal that appears to have grown out of the (largely Claremont-based) American Greatness movement. American Affairs seems to understand itself as a possible seed-ground for exploring an intellectual foundation to Trumpism.

I should admit forthrightly that I look on this project as a skeptic, and as one who considers that the founders of this project have taken a large (not to say foolhardy) burden on themselves. I’m not, in general, the sort of person who seeks to shut down ambitious intellectual projects. But to my mind, the trouble with American Greatness was always the extent to which it understood itself in rejectionist terms. The spirit of the thing seemed not to be, “The right could use some fresh ideas around now, so let’s explore,” so much as, “The whole conservative movement is intellectually and (probably) morally bankrupt, so we’re starting over. Sign onto our program or be rendered irrelevant.”

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A Dissenting Voice

 

I want to ask you a question. Do you gravitate to news that agrees with your point of view, be it political or other? Do you want to hear the dissenting voice? How important, as a Ricochet paying customer, is it important to you? While Ricochet promotes itself as a conservative blog, we know that the many members that make up this site are from varying backgrounds, to say the least.

We have all faiths or no faith, we have different education levels, incomes levels, political views. This site is promoted as primarily politically-leaning, yet we enjoy poets, photographers, comedians, artists, doctors, lawyers, journalists, TV personalities, military, and so forth. What makes it such an interesting site is there is a community atmosphere, where all views are welcome. You get to know personalities, personal challenges. We even pray for each other – that’s right. There are groups within groups, on every interest you can imagine. It’s all monitored by a code of conduct – called respect. The sky is the limit with regards to topic and discussion, but there are no personal attacks allowed. People become friends, and support each other.

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Is Trumpism Sustainable?

 

Victor Davis Hanson examines the early initiatives coming out of the Trump Administration and reflects on whether the new president’s momentum is sustainable over the long run.

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What is Trumpism?

 

Victor Davis Hanson examines the constituent parts of Donald Trump’s political beliefs and attempts to deduce the animating principles of Trumpism.

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How Far Back Do the Populists Want to Turn the Clock?

 
The old Heinz factory, now a combination of residential lofts and a manufacturing facility, sits among houses in Pittsburgh.

From Janan Ganesh in the Financial Times:

What western electorates seem to want is a correction of the liberal model, not its extinction. The marginal British voter, who braved EU exit, but only just, can worry that freedom — to migrate, to trade, to avoid taxes — has run away with itself since the millennium without pining for Ye Olde Worlde rigidities.

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It’s been over two weeks since election night. But many of us are still wondering how to interpret the results and what those results will mean for the conservative movement. I was surprised t0 read that Stephen Moore, a supply sider and free trader, is open to a trillion dollar “stimulus” package, even though he […]

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Niall Ferguson has an essay out hypothesizing a new world order based on an alliance between America, Russia, China, and a Marine Le Pen-led France: As a corollary, the three powers might agree on the demotion of Europe from great power status, taking advantage not only of Brexit but the increasingly fragmented and introspective character […]

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Trump’s historic accomplishment is to be a populist who actually succeeds in becoming president. As Ricochet member and Hillsdale Professor of History Paul Rahe has noted- the US has had a populist movement every 24 years since the 1890s. Starting with William Jennings Bryan in the 1890s, Teddy Roosevelt in the WWI era, then with […]

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America the Alienated

 

Victor Davis Hanson explains why many Americans are increasingly removed from the nation’s core political, economic, and cultural institutions.

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I just finished watching tonight’s Greg Gutfeld Show, and was struck by just how much populism reared its ugly head. Tyrus, a TNA wrestler who has become a regular panelist complained that the problem with Obamacare and the medical system in our country is because of pharmaceutical companies and their quest for profits. Martin Shkreli […]

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The Journal of American Greatness, or as we also know it, the PIT, has now reached its 12th volume. I refer you to pages 890 et seq. for one of the more revealing discussions of what’s going on with the Republican party, its electorate, & its political principles. It is fully deserving of your attention, […]

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Brexit Should Be a Good Sign for American Conservatives (But It Won’t Be)

 
shutterstock_260134352
Chris Ioannou / Shutterstock.com

In the wake of the Brexit vote, it is natural to consider what the populist victory — unexpected by elite officials and opinionmakers — might mean for elections elsewhere. Does polling underestimate Donald Trump’s true level of support? Is Trump a US equivalent of Boris Johnson? Will nationalist movements on the European continent be able to make headway too?

Certainly there are similarities, lessons, and areas of overlap. However, I believe those areas of overlap are insufficient in a critical way. The vote for UK sovereignty hinged on two separate questions: 1) Does the European Union make decisions that are good for the UK? and 2) Should the EU make decisions for the UK? Most of us at Ricochet might consider those questions indistinguishable, but the distinction is important. Some UK voters didn’t mind belonging to the EU as long as the UK continued to benefit. Others objected on principle to ceding decisions to Brussels. These are both forms of populism, but are founded on different sets of values. For years, the UK Independence Party argued against tighter integration on the basis of constitutional nationalism, and could garner only limited support. The success of the Leave movement is that its leaders formed an electoral coalition of both the pragmatic nationalists and the constitutional nationalists.

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What will be the implications of Britain’s leaving the EU for nationalist parties in France and Germany. France has the ‘National Front,’ (and the much smaller Euroskeptic parties ‘Movement for France,’ and ‘France Arise’) and Germany has the Euroskeptic ‘Alternative for Germany’ and the fascist ‘National Democratic Party.’ Afaik, they all are more or less […]

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The analysts of the Brexit vote have noted that the areas of Great Britain that voted for it most strongly had poor economies, and that concerns about immigration were also a major factor. Given the anemic American economic recovery under Obama, and the concerns many have that large cohorts of immigrants may include terrorists, I […]

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Minnesota recently switched from an open caucus to an open primary, which I thought was lunacy. I immediately shot off an email to my brother (who works for state government as a legislative liason) blaming him for the whole thing, and also implicating salty Hillary supporters (Bernie won big here). I got a chance to talk with […]

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