Back in 2012, I knew Romney would lose. His path to victory was narrow, and I could sense that Florida was going to go for Obama. There were Obama bumper stickers everywhere, and people talking about what a great guy he was (“he speaks so well,” they’d say). There was no enthusiasm for Mitt Romney. To us, he was a perfunctory vote, no more, no less.
There were no scandals for Romney. The worst they came up with was something about his dog, a comment about binders, and this notion that his corporate work was somehow anti-American. But to a Leftist, anything a Republican does is Anti-American. He could eat a cheeseburger, and it would somehow be a fascist cheeseburger.
The Left didn’t even call him a Nazi very often — a theme that had been blasted strongly at Sarah Palin, and Bush II before her (McCain, of course, was tarred by proximity to his VP candidate). The reason for this, of course, was that everyone knew he was going to lose.
In fact, that was Mitt Romney’s designated role, to be the graceful loser, and to bow out to the inevitability of Hopey-Changey Obamaness. He was the Queen, sacrificed in a game of chess, but to no particular purpose. “Give up your strongest piece,” said the Left, “it will make the game more fair.” Nobody was surprised, then, when Romney went down in graceful defeat, made his concession call, and Facebook flooded with seemingly positive messages from the 51% to the 49%.
Remember that? The Left sent out pictures of authentic-looking handwritten messages on paper saying “we’re one people, from the 51% to the 49%.” Nobody believed it, of course, we all knew things were swirling the ideological drain, but it was a time when the Left still pretended they thought Right-wingers were actually people.
After GamerGate, Donald Trump, attacks on the second amendment, Social Justice ascendancy on college campuses, and censorship culture… does anyone believe they will write nice messages to us this time around if they win?
No, the gloves have come off. The mask is slipping now. Donald Trump has done us one great service already, for his bombastic bluster has caused the Left to reveal themselves in their final form: the totalitarian SJWs. The Boss Fight has come at last.
Donald Trump isn’t the knight in shining armor we might have wanted for that fight, but he fights nonetheless. We all know that November the 8th is going to go down into chaotic insanity no matter how things turn out.
There is no predicting the outcome of this election. I don’t get the sense of impending loss I did for Romney in 2012. The Hopey Changey bumper stickers that flooded the state are pointedly missing. The Hillary signs are few, and her rallies thin on the ground. But if Trump can fill a stadium with supporters, his bumper stickers and street signs are also missing, albeit for different reasons. Nobody wants their truck burned for a Trump/Pence sticker. Signs, of course, are stolen with high frequency.
The polls are wildly off kilter with one another. Read them, and you will see everything from a 12 point Clinton landslide to a 6 point Trump landslide. Even Nate Silver got into it with the Huffington Post for thinking they had the right of the thing.
Trump, meanwhile, is the clear favorite in Iowa and Ohio, states where Romney disappointed, and whatever the polls may or may not say, one thing IS clear: Trump is doing better than Romney did. Even the most intellectually dishonest of Leftists understands that. That is why their opposition to him is so strong.
Nazi comparisons only come out when someone is a genuine threat. Actual Nazi-ness is completely irrelevant.
Comey reopening the investigation tanked Hillary’s campaign, but will his stance on the thing now save her campaign? Or will it be seen as proof of collusion and corruption at the highest levels?
I have no predictions for you tomorrow, but I urge you to vote. Even if you are NeverTrump, I want you to consider something very carefully: neither candidate is exactly a role model for children, but one candidate may very well be the end of the United States of America.
While I have no specific predictions about tomorrow’s results, I do have some predictions if Hillary wins:
The Second Amendment will be attacked when Hillary gets her nominee in the Supreme Court.
There will be Civil War if she does this.
Amnesty will turn Texas blue.
No Right-of-Center politician will ever win the Presidency again.
Such a split would be the OPTIMISTIC scenario. The pessimistic one would be a complete and total Leftist victory – and worldwide Socialism.
If Trump wins, here are my predictions:
Riots in the streets of most major cities.
Violence against Trump supporters.
Agitations for Trump to be assassinated.
Beyond that, I cannot say. If Trump does even half of what he claims, it will be a great relief and breath of fresh air. If he doesn’t, he is still unlikely to be any worse than Hillary.
We all saw McCain and Romney going down in flames from miles away. But for Trump, the best we can say is “who the Hell knows?”
As I’ve said before, vote Donald Trump tomorrow, even if you can’t stand him. It’s not a vote for the man — it’s merely a vote for a few extra years of life for our American Republic, and a slim chance to turn the Titanic around before the end.
Roughly contemporaneously with the establishment of our once-proud Republic, Edward Gibbon penned his magnum opus, a grand work that occupied much of his life. Much of that voluminous affair was crude and ineffectual from our modern standpoint. Yet he will forever remain the first to make that grand attempt to discover the underlying reasons why the greatest of all ancient empires disappeared from the face of the Earth forever.
That such a work was composed during the rise of the American Experiment is, perhaps, a historical irony.
All of my life I have sensed the decline of my own country, its fall from the present, the slow slide into irrelevancy soon experienced by all great nations. Each day, the country seemed just slightly less than it had been the day before. It was not a thing measured in statistics and economic indicators, though they too often show the same. No. It can be seen in the streets of any major city, it can be seen in the decaying structures of the country, the abandoned factories, the great skyscrapers half-full, the rotting homes in subdivisions once filled with the laughing of children.
I remember when race relations were better than they are today, when though there was some animosity between blacks and whites, things were nonetheless a far cry from the division we face today. In those days, we were all Americans. I think my first indication that the racial train was coming off the rails was the riots in Los Angeles. I lived in California during much of my childhood, my father being in the military and all, and I saw the decay that began there. When I was born, California was the beautiful state bathed in eternal sun. There were surfers and moviestars, beautiful homes and quiet suburbs. It was a quintessentially Republican state in those days, a far cry from what it is today.
So in my mind, though likely not in fact, that decline began in Southern California, late in the 1980s. Some kind of malaise had infected the state. The roads crumbled, and the trash piled up along the oil-mixed brim on the side of the freeways. Dysfunction crept into everything, from Valley Girl vapidness to Compton’s home as the capital of the criminals-turned-rap-stars. Illegals were everywhere, as the first signs were posted on the freeways showing families running across the I-5 corridor. Watch out, they told us, you might run over a little girl running across 22 lanes of freeway at 2 o’clock in the morning.
Movies of the period show us this declining phase from what was, perhaps, the most beautiful and robust state in the entire Union. Watch this scene from Falling Down and see if you can’t feel it:
California felt like this in the late 80s, and still felt that way when I left for good in 2004. I would never go back there.
But the decline was not confined to California. It follows you wherever you go, you only gain, perhaps, a temporary respite while the malaise catches up with you. Central Florida is starting to feel as LA did 30 years ago. Yes, the sun is shining, and the weather is beautiful. The cruise ships and the tourists come and go. Suburbia crawls forward into the rural zones.
But behind that wave, a festering wound is opening. Ethnic violence, self-segregated ghettos, the expansion of the welfare state, and a sense that no neighborhood is safe for more than a couple decades. And as it ate California, and turned it from a solidly Conservative state to something approximating the Third World in places, so now is it eating my new home.
It even creeps forward in that great bastion of freedom: Texas. Oh yes, Texas remains safe for the GOP, but each year the margins thin a little, and the hovering guillotine of amnesty threatens to permanently shift the demographics of the state.
When Texas goes, there will be no possible way to halt the decline even supposing such a path remains to us today.
Donald Trump tells us to Make America Great Again. I’m not sure it’s possible, for the rot is so ubiquitous, so omnipresent, that the people often fail to notice it’s there at all. They have, like the frog in the pot, become accustomed to the dysfunction and malaise spreading forth like a cancer from most major cities.
The corruption of Hillary Clinton, having reached stratospheric levels even LBJ and Nixon could never have hoped to imagine is par for the course in modern America. It hurts her a little, but not much, and perhaps not enough to keep her from the Oval Office.
It’s unclear that a Donald Trump presidency could conceivably slow this decline, much less reverse it. But it is on us to try anyway. You go to battle with the army you have, not the army you wish for.
I look back on California before the toxic malaise spread as a sort of dream from which I was awakened. It will never be again. That place is destroyed, and what took up the same name was but a cruel mockery of the original. Los Angeles has more in common with Mexico City, now, than any American city, perhaps.
The elites, of course, maintain their islands of prosperity, fastidiously guarded by fences, walls, and guys with guns. All things, I should note, that they claim won’t work on our southern border.
And so I returned to the South, where my family had originated… only to watch it slide slowly into the same cesspit. Do you understand how profoundly depressing this can be? Not for myself, mind you, but for my son, who will almost certainly live in a far more hostile world than I did.
Lena Dunham gleefully extols the extinction of people like me, and she is far from the only one. Yet it is I, and those like me, who wear the labels racist, sexist, et. al. I have never in my life called for the extinction of an entire people, and she has. Yet it is I who plays the part of the villain in this story.
Hillary Clinton’s people can, quite literally, casually conduct Satanic rituals, and not an eyebrow is raised. Not a single critical thought is expressed, nor word spoken against it. Yes, they have their rights, same as I do. And yet here it is that in this day and age, the Christian is the villain, and the worshipers of… whatever it was they were doing, are given praise and attention from celebrities and world leaders around the globe.
If you think this is almost too weird to be true, consider that Anthony Weiner, a pedophile who sticks his… wiener in the wrong places may have torpedoed Hillary Clinton’s campaign (we’ll see if the new Comey ruling will save her, I have doubts) in the same year the Libertarian candidate is running under the slogan “feel the Johnson” and a major Republican primary topic was, apparently, the size of Donald Trump’s penis.
Look back objectively in your mind. Go back to previous elections and see if you can spot the trend, the slow debasement of national politics, a subject never exactly in the highest regard, but to which we have bravely sought new roads in our never-ending quest to find the intellectual bottom.
Hope and Change brought us none of the above. Eight more years of this may be the very end.
Who shall write The History of the Decline and Fall of the United States of America?
Some of my readers have explained to me that the rural areas in the flyover states are still good places, with good people, a real piece of old America-that-was. I believe them. But now let me tell you this: the rot won’t stop here. It will continue forth. It will come and destroy your homes even as it has destroyed one of mine, and seeks to annihilate the other.
As bad as Hillary Clinton is today, somebody worse will come after her, and someone even less moral and less competent will follow that individual. Honorius tended to his chickens as the Visigoths sacked Rome. What will Hillary do? Attend Spirit Cooking sessions with Podesta and chant to Bahomet about how it was totally unfair that Trump made her work for victory?
The flyover states and rural enclaves are all that’s left of the America I once knew. And even they will soon find themselves mired in the same quagmire of regulatory nonsense and mass unrestricted demographic replacement the cities and suburbs now suffer under.
Lena Dunham admitted a truth in her video: they don’t want us subjugated, or our empire shorn from underneath us. They want us exterminated, to preclude any possible survival of our ideals. They want Western Civilization annihilated forever, replaced by a monopolitical force, with no borders except those between elites and plebeians. There is to be nothing in between.
Los Angles will be writ large upon the country. Coming soon to a neighborhood near you. I had a place to go back then. But where will you go when the disease reaches your environs? The time is fast coming when we will all be backed against a wall, and the only choice is fighting or dying, or perhaps both.
Ann Coulter will tell you that it is mass immigration that is to blame. Many Conservatives will tell you it is economics and the perpetual drive toward Socialism. Many Trumpites speak of Globalism and the drive to world government. Zero Hedge will speak of the Deep State. Many tell us of the dangers of Islam. And the Lena Dunhams will speak of racial extermination and replacement.
The truth is something like all of the above, to varying degrees. Like any form of warfare, there are multiple angles of attack, a sort of combined arms theory for politics. Any method will do for the elites, so long as the America, and indeed the Western civilization, we all know is buried forever.
I don’t know if we can even salvage what’s left of this country… much less make it great again. I’m not sure if the army we have is sufficient for the job. All I know is, if we don’t try, we lose.
Vote Donald Trump for President, even if you hate his guts. Like it or not, it may be our last chance to salvage this country.
The thing that is most worrisome and poignant here is a reply someone posted with an archived screenshot from 2014. Observe:
This reads exactly like Orwell’s Animal Farm. All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others. This man considered the media to be more important, and more protected by the Constitution than actual citizens. I presume he refers to the first amendment.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
Note that the there is nothing here which grants freedom of the press a higher status than freedom of speech. Indeed, freedom of speech comes first, and the press is accounted as a mere expansion on this general concept. There is no text that says “freedom of the press supersedes freedom of speech.” The two are one and the same. Quid pro quo. If the media has the right to do a thing then I, as a private citizen, also have that right, and in at least equal measure.
But the media and the elitists running things really believe they are more equal than you, that their rights take precedence, even supposing they deign to grant us any rights whatsoever.
Wake up, people. We’re coming up on the fucking end. I don’t know that electing Donald Trump will prevent Civil War. It may be too late to stop that. But I know, with as much certainty as any human being can claim, that Hillary Clinton means war.
I will reiterate and repeat: Hillary Clinton means WAR.
A vote for Hillary Clinton is a vote for Civil War. No exaggeration, no rhetoric, no bullshit. Just truth. Because as Ace of Spades told us in one of those tweets:
“People are sick of being bullied.” — a simple but very astute observation on why people are in near-open rebellion
Consider what happens when Hillary bullies them more for eight years. Near-open rebellion will lose any vestige of peacefulness, because the vote will have been deemed worthless to effecting change. Look at Brexit, denied by the high courts in Britain, despite a very clear referendum. Tom Kratman has told us in the comments in his column at EveryJoe, that the vote is a stand-in for violence. It is an agreement to solve our differences peacefully, and compromise together.
When we are not allowed to use the vote, when the results are thrown out whenever the elite takes issue with them, when blatant corruption and media manipulation as shown in the Wikileaks emails are employed to destroy our voting power… all you leave us with is violence.
So it’s time for a day-by-day breakdown of how things are going in the clusterfuck of an election. All along I’ve distrusted the polling data, because it conflicts so obviously with what I’ve actually seen. But at the same time, the polls are tracking something even if they have, in my opinion, underestimated the Trump Closet.
Contrary to my last election post, Trump may have a shot at this thing now. The email scandal has, by itself, moved the FiveThirtyEight election odds by 7% in the last few hours alone. Nate Silver had him at around 13% odds only a few days ago. Trump now hovers around 30%. If we figure the Trump Closet exists, then he has good odds. If it doesn’t, it’s 1 in 3. Not good, but not entirely hopeless.
Something struck me today, though, about how Hillary and the Democrats operate. Leftism is a subtle disease. You rarely get the sort of self-constructed Bolshevik revolutions that took over Russia and Cuba. Rather, Leftism slowly works on people, breaking down their defenses, using everything from focus group data to tactics of ideological subversion to slowly convince people to come to the Leftist banner.
Meanwhile, Leftism fights against reality, which periodically intrudes in epic proportions. Take 9/11, for instance. For a time, NYC, Babylon-on-the-Hudson, started spewing Conservative-sounding rhetoric. An Islamic attack has a tendency to do that. Or take the crime wave that hit New York prior to Giuliani taking office there. Again, reality intruded, and required someone who wasn’t a complete Leftist to deal with it.
We see the same in the polls in this election. Hillary slowly builds up support through advertising, campaigning, media stumping, propaganda, etc… and periodically reality will intrude and sharply reverse her progress, such as the drop of this latest email scandal with Weiner. Suddenly polls that were saying Hillary had a 12 point lead, now say she has a 1 point lead. One even reversed so far as to give Trump the advantage.
Of course, how believable the +12 Clinton polls were to begin with is a matter of some skepticism. Nonetheless, while they have likely been way off all along, the movement, the tracking, is noteworthy.
Leftism is an exercise in the denial of reality, but reality still gets a vote, and when those hammers drop they are usually quite severe, and take years to reverse. Nonetheless, and perhaps most disturbingly, the Leftists do appear to manage that reversal. Imagine asking New Yorkers about Syrian refugees with possible terror connections on, say, 9/12? Now ask them today.
See what I mean? That didn’t happen overnight, and it cost Democrat operatives like Podesta immense time, money, connections, and effort to achieve.
This is one reason why I remain consistent in my discussion of Trump as a lesser evil. He has his flaws, but a Trump presidency is unlikely to continue the trend of systemic reality denial on the part of the people. His bombastic behavior will either be true, in which case he will do some good by shedding light on it, or will be wrong… and promptly pounced on by every self-anointed fact checker on the Internet.
But Hillary’s political machine will slowly but surely bend the people in the direction she wants to go. Or, at least enough of them to hold on to power, at any rate. There’s a strong percentage, but still far short of a majority in this country, who will not be propagandized. Eventually Hillary will run up against a wall she can’t move. And being a consummate denier of reality, she may just attempt to make it move. To whip the sea of gun owners, so to speak.
But by the time we come to that, it may be too far gone to save this country from Civil War.
Trump is a vote for a delay, maybe enough to give us some time to turn the Titanic around before the iceberg, maybe not. But I feel like we have to try.
One thing is clear to me, and it’s more or less the only thing with such clarity, we’re approaching a strange sort of historical nexus point. I wonder if this is how folks in Europe felt in the days leading up to the death of Archduke Franz Ferdinand. It’s not just in America, for Brexit and the various secession movements in Europe show us that the old order is breaking down.
With the collapse of the Soviet Union, the sort of post-World War II geopolitical stability evaporated. The Cold War had a certain consistency to it. It was a game with rules, perpetuated by rival Empires with no interest in actually going to war. Neither state was under the illusion that it was invincible.
Today listening to Democrats talking about how Russia would be an easy rollover if Hillary was in office… I don’t even know what to say to that except to note that everyone else in history who thought that wound up on the losing side except for, perhaps, Genghis Khan.
No, I don’t worship Russian military prowess, mind you. I’m not really qualified to comment on that anyway. But Russia is locally ascendant and remains one of the strongest Great Powers. Trying to defeat them in their own backyard would be idiotic and, in any event, not worth the lives expended on the endeavor, regardless of the outcome.
For Democrats to agitate for war against Russia is one of the most bizarre reversals I’ve ever seen in American politics. They wanted to surrender to Russia only a few decades ago. But it is not only in this that American politics have mutated into absurdity.
Legislation of morality used to be a feature of radicals on the Right. You would have people saying that video games were the work of Satan, or some such. And most of us more reasonable Right-wingers would point and laugh at them. Fortunately, most Conservatives grew out of this nonsense, but now the Left has embraced it instead. Video games are sexist, or racist, or some such. SocJus is the Religion of the Left, and it tolerates no competitors (except Islam).
The Left took the worst features of the Right — the ones we were usually embarrassed about, like moral puritanism and armchair generalship, and grafted them onto the Left, creating a political Frankenstein’s monster. That is what Hillary Clinton is running under. Maximum stupidity and willful delusion.
Political normalcy has been defenestrated. I see dedicated Right-wing intellectuals going Hillary, and rank-and-file Lefties going Trump. I see massive enthusiasm for Trump, and little for Hillary… but also a firestorm of hate for Trump in the higher circles. Polls are widely split and seem to have little correlation with reality. I don’t trust any of them, regardless of whom they claim will win. Between Wikileaks, and the finally-open propagandizing from the media, almost anything is possible at this point.
You could have anything from an unforeseen Trump landslide, along the lines of the unpredictability of Brexit, to a Hillary mandate which controls the entire Federal Government at all levels. This is not business as usual. There could be violence unseen in any election in historical memory, or the whole thing could go down with a whimper, and no bang.
And if Trump wins, he could turn out to be just as bad as Hillary, or do what he’s saying and drain the swamp and shake up the political alignments even further. One of my friends is worried that Trump would actually govern from the Left and not the Right, and I suppose that is possible too.
I literally have no idea, and don’t really trust anyone who says that he does know. The only thing I know for certain is that Hillary represents the end. If she gets that mandate, we’re heading to the same toilet bowl Venezuela finds itself swirling in.
So I’ll vote for the revolver with three bullets instead of six. But I really have no idea which one the American voters are going to hand us.
So I attended a Trump rally yesterday. First, let me assure my readers that this isn’t a reversal on my Trump-as-lesser-evil position. I continue to maintain that Trump is not a positive so much as Hillary is a negative. However, I was curious to see what kind of people are supporting this man, and why they were doing so. Why speculate when you can actually see for yourself? Thus I went to the rally and talked to people there to find out what was going on.
Here are my observations.
First, there was an older lady of clear Mexican ancestry who was interviewing with the media talking heads just outside the gates. She was angry and clearly agitated at some of the questions. At first I thought she might be an anti-Trump protester.
No. She was a Trump supporter, and was expressing how pissed off she was that she spent all this time and money coming into the country through the legal channels, and other Mexicans just walked across the border for free. She was saying that they didn’t want to be Americans, and that they just wanted to make money and go back to Mexico. She never wanted to return to that hellhole, and didn’t understand why they did. Other Trump supporters extolled her virtues for coming in the right way.
Second, there were lots of women in the crowd, much more than I expected. Someone had been distributing pink “women for Trump” signs, and I saw a lot of those — more than the regular Trump/Pence signage, actually. The women were louder and more energized than the men. This despite there being an anti-Trump protester outside the venue with a megaphone and a loudspeaker constantly playing back Trump’s “grab ’em by the pussy” comment on repeat.
I talked to one woman about it and she said she didn’t care about the comment, because she’s said worse about men when hanging out with her girlfriends. It may be that Trump lost marginal/borderline supporters for the comment, but it is clear that it didn’t make a dent in his base.
Overall, the anti-Trump protesters were few, and not particularly well-organized. I honestly expected a lot more of them given the media’s focus on them. Either Hillary thinks she has this election in the bag, or they have moved on to other tactics. The First Amendment area was mostly empty.
The people there were nice, peaceful, and nothing at all like what I expected. The area off the Florida State Fairgrounds, where there was parking, was cash-only. $10 to park there. Naturally, I failed to bring cash. The parking attendant let me in anyway, and told me there was an ATM inside where I could get money and come back to pay her. Unfortunately, this ATM was very well-hidden. I asked one of the campaign workers if she knew where it was, and instead of pointing me toward it, she just offered me the $10. I politely declined, and continued my search for the ATM (which I eventually found), but I was impressed nonetheless.
There were no incidents of violence, no craziness, none of the stuff the media has been reporting on. In fact, it was quite the opposite. The rally was held at the amphitheater, which is a venue for a lot of concerts and big events, and I have *never* seen a crowd so well behaved as this one. Usually people are all up in your personal space, jostling, bumping up against you. There would be spilled drinks, screaming people, dirty looks and occasional fights. Not at the Trump rally.
When the rally ended, everyone filed out in orderly fashion, personal space was respected, there was no jostling, or the usual hostile folks trying to force their way out. For me, the contrast was staggering. All this despite the fact that the amphitheater was packed to the gills, and there was a whole crowd outside the venue. The amphitheater has seating for approximately 20,000, plus an additional space for around 1,000 to stand up front (usually a mosh pit when bands are in town). So there was around 21,000 in the venue, and an indeterminate number outside.
There were two people at the rally that I suspect were plants. Again, the crowd was exceptionally well behaved, and so these two women (who appeared to me rather like SJWs) screaming and exaggerating everything Trump said were very out of place. They seemed to be agitating for something, but to the crowd’s credit, everybody ignored them. A man seated next to me wondered if Soros paid them to be there.
I expressed to a few people there that I wasn’t really a Trump supporter, and I didn’t personally care for the man. I expected people to get in my face about that. Certainly there’s been a lot of that on Facebook. Instead I received mostly sympathetic responses. A number of people felt likewise. One man said that he still didn’t like Trump, but that America deserved someone who at least wasn’t a felon.
Another man said he was an immigrant from Hungary, and that he didn’t care much for Trump’s boisterous attitude, but that he was very worried about militant Islamics getting in and causing trouble. He said that Eastern Europe has long memories in that regard. More than a few cited wikileaks as their reason for going Trump. I was surprised how many people had actually read through many of the emails.
The crowd itself was a blend from all walks of American life. There were Working Class folks in large numbers, who I still think comprise Trump’s base. But there were a lot more Upper-Middle class folks in the audience than I expected. I may have underestimated his support there. There were more minorities than I expected, also. Especially blacks. It was still more white than America-at-large, but contrary to media spin, Hispanics and blacks were very well represented.
The rally itself was strange. I have very little to compare it to, because I don’t usually attend these sorts of things as I don’t go in for this politician worship. They had a smattering of guest speakers, and went with a strongly anti-Obamacare message, overall. The guest speakers included a doctor of Cuban descent, a local black bishop, and a number of Republican party politicians from the area, most of whom I recognized.
It was very high energy, in terms of the music they played, and the way Trump spoke. It is clear that whatever Trump’s other faults (and they are legion), he is a good public speaker and knows how to work a crowd. The crowd occasionally burst out into spontaneous chants of “USA” and “Lock Her Up.” There was an awkward moment when Trump said that the media would not pan the cameras and show how big the crowd was, and when he said this, only one camera did (I presume that was Fox, but I don’t know). The rest of the media just sort of stood there awkwardly and did nothing. They never did show the crowd. Of course, the crowd booing them probably didn’t make them any more willing.
I was wondering if the populism would feel wrong. I’m a big skeptic when it comes to populism, though I don’t care for elitism either. And a number of folks have worried that Trump could spin his populist appeal into tyranny. It didn’t feel that way. The crowd was very normal, for lack of a better way to put it. I got no sense that this man was being held up as some kind of demigod or demagogue. I did, however, get a very strong sense that they absolutely loathed Hillary Clinton. That seems to be the big unifying factor for them. I doubt that Jeb would have commanded the same kind of strong support, but at the same time, I don’t think Trump would have been received like this if it weren’t for the fact that Hillary was so terrible. Thus I am less worried of a populist-backed tyrant in the form of Trump than I was before attending this rally. It didn’t feel like a fascist thing in any way, regardless of how the media spins it. And bear in mind, I’m a career cynic in this regard. I would most definitely tell you if I got even a whiff of that sort of thing.
None of this changes my opinion of Donald Trump, mind you. I don’t like him, and I don’t think I ever will. I’ll vote for him because my hatred of Hillary is so strong. But that’s as far as I will go. Yet my opinion of his supporters has changed somewhat. Certainly the media portrayal of them as violent racists and sexists is complete bullshit. The old Mexican woman who came in legally was held up as a model by other Trumpites. His black supporters were welcomed, and one guy said of the black bishop “nobody preaches to a crowd better than a black man of God.” And the women were louder and more supportive than the men. There was no violence, and in fact there was a considerably bizarre level of respect for personal space that I’ve not experienced in a very long time. These people were genuinely nice, and the two hecklers were largely ignored.
At this point, I have nothing to compare between Trump’s campaign and Hillary’s campaign. And I’m not sure I can find the stomach to attend a Hillary rally. But if I can, it would be interesting to compare.