Last week in Mumbai, Hillary Clinton declared that the 2016 Trump campaign was “looking backwards.”  The message that followed was utterly predictable.  “I won the places that are optimistic, diverse, dynamic, looking forward,” she said, once again dividing up the country into deplorables and acceptables – except now one would have to throw Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin into the deplorable column.  Hillary’s universe of potential votes is shrinking fast.

What stands out is Madame Secretary’s suggestion that she is “dynamic” and forward-looking while conservatives like President Trump are relics of the past.  This is a remarkable and preposterous claim.  In fact, Hillary’s thinking hasn’t changed since the sixties, and the radicalism of the sixties was itself grounded in ideas that were familiar in the 18th century.    

The sight of a defeated presidential candidate trooping – or stumbling – around the world attempting to undermine a lawfully elected U.S. president was bad enough, but to see this former candidate doing so was especially nauseating.  What right has Hillary Clinton, whose political opinions haven’t changed since she was a toddler, to lecture Donald Trump on looking backward?

What’s wrong with the minds of liberals, anyway, and why can’t they change?

After all, a lot has changed since the 1960s.  The crucial moment was when Richard Nixon won the presidency in 1968 by running against the sixties.  His brilliant campaign recognized that there existed a Silent Majority that loathed the love-ins, drugs, social experimentation, and violent protests of that era.  Leftists detested Richard Nixon, and they could never forgive him for running against their ideas and winning.  Like Hillary-supporters of our time (many of them the same people, just older), they could never accept the fact that the left had lost the battle of ideas.

Through Nixon, Reagan, the Bushes, and Trump, and even with Bill Clinton’s triangulation toward the center (and away from Hillary), America has moved forward, doubling down on its core identity of democratic capitalism.  Nothing summed it up better than Ronald Reagan’s brilliant re-election campaign ad of 1984 – “it’s morning again in America.”  That ad was a checklist of everything the American people cherished and that radicals hated.

Today’s Dems lack new ideas because they are still defending the indefensible.  Is it wise to confiscate all that our most talented individuals earn and distribute it to those who refuse to work?  Is it just to attack police officers in protest against perceived injustices?  Is it right to malign your own country, weaken its defenses, and flit around the world declaring that it is morally at fault while defending regimes like those of communist Cuba, Venezuela, and the Palestinian Authority?

Leftists are not just opposed to free enterprise, freedom of thought, and fundamental liberties – because they have had so little success, they are now frenzied in their opposition.  They wish to tear down America as it has been for centuries and replace it with something resembling what Stalin, Castro, and Chávez “achieved” in their respective countries.

It’s not that the Democratic leadership is old, biologically speaking.  It’s that their ideas are old.  Today’s progressive platform of income equality, suppression of religious expression, and state control is so familiar as to be trite – the kind of stuff one expects from a crazy aunt like Nancy Pelosi.  These core beliefs have been restated verbatim by Vladimir Lenin, Mao Zedong, Adolf Hitler, Fidel Castro, Frantz Fanon, Herbert Marcuse, Pol Pot, Che Guevara, Huey Newton, and thousands of others – by every leftist from Rousseau to Mark Rudd.  And that’s where Hillary got them. 

Leftists like Hillary have been reduced to name-calling because they have nothing to offer in the way of ideas.  With nothing to offer, they keep tossing out the race card, the gender card, and the class card and hope one of them sticks.  That is not the sign of a viable political party.  I keep expecting the Democratic Party to implode and be replaced by something new – perhaps a more libertarian-oriented and mainstream party of the people – but it never happens.  Democrats like Hillary and Pelosi are so stuck in the heady days of the sixties that they seem incapable of entertaining fresh ideas.

Could it be that a major tax reform bill – one that leaves more money in the hands of individuals and businesses – would benefit ordinary Americans?  The Democratic leadership refused even to entertain the thought because it would transfer funds from government back to the people who actually earned it.  That sort of reflexive statist thinking is now mandatory for every Democrat in office.  Back in December, Chuck Schumer declared that Republicans would “rue the day” they passed tax reform, and he has made it clear that a second tax cut bill would be DOA in the Senate.  But according to Axios, most Americans don’t see it that way.  They favor the GOP tax reform passed in December and presumably would favor a second tax reform bill.

The fact is that the American people don’t want revolution – they want smaller government and protection of individual liberties.  That’s what President Trump is providing.  In one year Trump has done more to move our economy forward than any president since Ronald Reagan.  That can hardly be called “looking backwards.”

If you think the message of sixties radicalism still works, go back to Mumbai – though even there it has been repudiated along with Flower Power and groovy dances like the frug.  While the left keeps yapping away about racism, sexism, and income inequality, conservatives are returning this country to greatness.  Every week is a step forward.

Watching Trump in action is breathtaking. Watching Hillary in Mumbai is just sad.

Jeffrey Folks is the author of many books and articles on American culture including Heartland of the Imagination (2011).

Image: edlf345 via Flickr.

Last week in Mumbai, Hillary Clinton declared that the 2016 Trump campaign was “looking backwards.”  The message that followed was utterly predictable.  “I won the places that are optimistic, diverse, dynamic, looking forward,” she said, once again dividing up the country into deplorables and acceptables – except now one would have to throw Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin into the deplorable column.  Hillary’s universe of potential votes is shrinking fast.

What stands out is Madame Secretary’s suggestion that she is “dynamic” and forward-looking while conservatives like President Trump are relics of the past.  This is a remarkable and preposterous claim.  In fact, Hillary’s thinking hasn’t changed since the sixties, and the radicalism of the sixties was itself grounded in ideas that were familiar in the 18th century.    

The sight of a defeated presidential candidate trooping – or stumbling – around the world attempting to undermine a lawfully elected U.S. president was bad enough, but to see this former candidate doing so was especially nauseating.  What right has Hillary Clinton, whose political opinions haven’t changed since she was a toddler, to lecture Donald Trump on looking backward?

What’s wrong with the minds of liberals, anyway, and why can’t they change?

After all, a lot has changed since the 1960s.  The crucial moment was when Richard Nixon won the presidency in 1968 by running against the sixties.  His brilliant campaign recognized that there existed a Silent Majority that loathed the love-ins, drugs, social experimentation, and violent protests of that era.  Leftists detested Richard Nixon, and they could never forgive him for running against their ideas and winning.  Like Hillary-supporters of our time (many of them the same people, just older), they could never accept the fact that the left had lost the battle of ideas.

Through Nixon, Reagan, the Bushes, and Trump, and even with Bill Clinton’s triangulation toward the center (and away from Hillary), America has moved forward, doubling down on its core identity of democratic capitalism.  Nothing summed it up better than Ronald Reagan’s brilliant re-election campaign ad of 1984 – “it’s morning again in America.”  That ad was a checklist of everything the American people cherished and that radicals hated.

Today’s Dems lack new ideas because they are still defending the indefensible.  Is it wise to confiscate all that our most talented individuals earn and distribute it to those who refuse to work?  Is it just to attack police officers in protest against perceived injustices?  Is it right to malign your own country, weaken its defenses, and flit around the world declaring that it is morally at fault while defending regimes like those of communist Cuba, Venezuela, and the Palestinian Authority?

Leftists are not just opposed to free enterprise, freedom of thought, and fundamental liberties – because they have had so little success, they are now frenzied in their opposition.  They wish to tear down America as it has been for centuries and replace it with something resembling what Stalin, Castro, and Chávez “achieved” in their respective countries.

It’s not that the Democratic leadership is old, biologically speaking.  It’s that their ideas are old.  Today’s progressive platform of income equality, suppression of religious expression, and state control is so familiar as to be trite – the kind of stuff one expects from a crazy aunt like Nancy Pelosi.  These core beliefs have been restated verbatim by Vladimir Lenin, Mao Zedong, Adolf Hitler, Fidel Castro, Frantz Fanon, Herbert Marcuse, Pol Pot, Che Guevara, Huey Newton, and thousands of others – by every leftist from Rousseau to Mark Rudd.  And that’s where Hillary got them. 

Leftists like Hillary have been reduced to name-calling because they have nothing to offer in the way of ideas.  With nothing to offer, they keep tossing out the race card, the gender card, and the class card and hope one of them sticks.  That is not the sign of a viable political party.  I keep expecting the Democratic Party to implode and be replaced by something new – perhaps a more libertarian-oriented and mainstream party of the people – but it never happens.  Democrats like Hillary and Pelosi are so stuck in the heady days of the sixties that they seem incapable of entertaining fresh ideas.

Could it be that a major tax reform bill – one that leaves more money in the hands of individuals and businesses – would benefit ordinary Americans?  The Democratic leadership refused even to entertain the thought because it would transfer funds from government back to the people who actually earned it.  That sort of reflexive statist thinking is now mandatory for every Democrat in office.  Back in December, Chuck Schumer declared that Republicans would “rue the day” they passed tax reform, and he has made it clear that a second tax cut bill would be DOA in the Senate.  But according to Axios, most Americans don’t see it that way.  They favor the GOP tax reform passed in December and presumably would favor a second tax reform bill.

The fact is that the American people don’t want revolution – they want smaller government and protection of individual liberties.  That’s what President Trump is providing.  In one year Trump has done more to move our economy forward than any president since Ronald Reagan.  That can hardly be called “looking backwards.”

If you think the message of sixties radicalism still works, go back to Mumbai – though even there it has been repudiated along with Flower Power and groovy dances like the frug.  While the left keeps yapping away about racism, sexism, and income inequality, conservatives are returning this country to greatness.  Every week is a step forward.

Watching Trump in action is breathtaking. Watching Hillary in Mumbai is just sad.

Jeffrey Folks is the author of many books and articles on American culture including Heartland of the Imagination (2011).

Image: edlf345 via Flickr.



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