The Importance of Trump

Like Richard Nixon, Donald Trump is the Silent Majority candidate of this election. The more the media howl at his abrasiveness and sheds crocodile tears for those he offends, the stronger he becomes. You can’t understand this without understanding Nixon and the electoral coalition he built that won him a 49-state landslide despite an overwhelmingly hostile media.

Trump’s people aren’t concerned with the minutiae of different tax plans or who gets endorsed by the Beltway think-tanks. They are not necessarily ideological conservatives, much less libertarians. The sight of various dyed in the wool GOPers and the libertarians who usually vote with them calling Trump a ‘RINO’ are stupendously missing the point and sadly oblivious to their own irrelevance.

The Trump base are responding to the erosion of American institutions; a process begun with some malice on the part of the American left but never effectively halted by the Republican Party. This is partly because mass Third World immigration, the greatest factor in America’s undoing, is supported by the Chamber of Commerce faction of the party, so the GOP is pursuing profits in the short-term but actually increasingly hurting it’s chances of winning the national ticket with every electoral cycle as a result of the demographic changes it is fostering.

Trump voters are not fascists or RINO’s or socialists or whatever. They are in the rawest sense just one thing: Americans. It must be noted that they are predominantly the descendants of America’s founding stock, supplemented by the pre-WWI European immigrants, and that they are opposed by a coalition of the fringes that represents a kind of anti-America. So while Trump’s people may not be reading Edmund Burke or Adam Smith, they are still our people. It’s up to the GOP to recognise them and embrace them, as opposed to turning their backs in embarrassment or spitting on them.

My Stance on the Confederate Battle Flag and Public Displays of Confederate Symbols

I wrote this on Facebook soon after the Charleston shooting and the ensuing controversy. But it looks like the issue isn’t receding anytime soon. This is what I said then, and what I stand by now:

There’s been a lot of talk on the matter of the Confederate flag recently.

Is it appropriate to display Dixie’s Battle Flag on public buildings? This flag being the symbol of the *Confederate Army*, not the actual CSA, by the way.

In my view one of the most admirable things about America has been the spirit of magnanimity regarding Confederate symbolism and Southern patriotism.

Plenty of honourable, decent Americans at the time believed that secession was lawful. It so happened that legality of it was never decided in the courtroom, but on the battlefield. The contest of 1861-65 was a matter of might over right. Had the South prevailed, nobody would be questioning its right to exist, no more than we do in regards to Canada today.

Race slavery would have continued for a few decades, but as in every country in the western hemisphere, it would have died a natural death. It’s feasible that several states in the Union could have maintained slavery for a time. Delaware, Kentucky, Maryland, Missouri and West Virginia kept it up during the war and after the Emancipation Proclamation (which only applied to rebel-held territory). Secession might even have speeded up the process. If the Union had no obligation to return escaped slaves without the fugitive slave law, slavery might have collapsed from the number of runaways.

All this is hypothetical, though. The South lost a war, in which many men took up arms against the federal government because they felt it was oppressive and that a new one would suit them better. Rather in the spirit of 1776, isn’t it? From what I have read, there were plenty of legally valid and logical reasons for secession, held by men of honour, intelligence, and principle. Robert E. Lee was one of them. And he wasn’t defeated by the forces of law or logic, but by being out-manned and out-gunned.

I don’t like the modern efforts by some cultural militants to cleanse the South of all patriotic sentiment and Confederate symbolism, from renaming schools to removing the portraits of Confederate generals at the war colleges. They see this as unfinished business and have no shame in stomping on the faces of the defeated all over again.

It’s not in the spirit of consensual, constitutional government to treat such vanquished people like mere bandits. I prefer that old spirit of magnanimity, diversity of opinion, and respect for the ambiguities of the war.