The Epiphany MAGA-Style

I don't have much to say about what happened yesterday.  The people who organized the demonstration and those, like the President, who merely agitated for it, must have known that whatever took place would play into the hands of the incoming administration and the media that represents them.  Even if not a single law had been broken, they would have been portrayed as sore losers who cannot accept the results of  a free and fair election.

Of course you will say, "It wasn't fair!  We wuz cheated."  Of course you were.  That is the history of electoral politics here and everywhere.  Ask Caesar and his honorable nemesis Cato.  The ancient Athenians knew that elections would insure the electoral victory of the wealthier parties.  "Don't get mad, get even" is a reasonable political maxim, but it requires more self-discipline and maturity than Donald Trump and his supporters are capable of.

There is a reason I have been mostly silent on the election results and wrote only to caution people against the counsels of despair.  There are enough unhinged people in America, on both sides,  to match all the Muslim terrorists in the world.  Getting people worked up enough to take their grievances to the street is not only stupid:  It is evil.  The woman who was shot is praised by her husband for being a patriot.  This is populism at its best--hooliganism in the service of republican virtue.

"Oh, but if she were black, there would be Hell to pay," we hear on all sides, and even at the breakfast table.  So what?  As Clyde Wilson said years ago, in response to people complaining that a disproportionate number of white murderers received the death penalty:  Who cares?  It is always a good thing when serial killers are executed.  If otherwise respectable white Republicans want to act like Antifa agents of chaos and destruction, what else can they expect.

A few days ago, a Facebook friend I know personally, asked what choice I left honest Americans except armed insurrection.  I answered with a joke:  slingshots against F-16's armed with nuclear weapons?  There has been altogether too much foolish talk of this sort from Maga-hat wearing sports fans and TV watchers, who think they can rise up in a Velvet Revolution and defeat the forces of evil.  They cannot.  Indeed, they cannot even manage to steal back an election.

I am  sorry--as I can be for a perfect stranger--for the dead woman and her family, but her death was the point at which the illusions of populist revolt ran into the gigantic wall of state power.

Before the delusions of populist uprising become set in stone, consider a few plain truths:
1. Political demonstrations to protest results of elections or trials is a technique of the left.
2.  While most people who join such demonstrations may be decent people, such events will always attract those who are not wrapped too tight.
3.  Those who organize and agitate for these demonstrations are responsible for what the fringe element does, especially if they have not taken any of the necessary precautions.
4.  What these demonstrators succeeded in proving is the lack of difference between themselves and BLM/Antifa.
5.  What a great way for Christian conservatives to celebrate Epiphany.
6.  Finally, more evidence--if we needed it-- of the complete idiocy of the American people.


Avatar photo

Thomas Fleming

Thomas Fleming is president of the Fleming Foundation. He is the author of six books, including The Morality of Everyday Life and The Politics of Human Nature, as well as many articles and columns for newspapers, magazines,and learned journals. He holds a Ph.D. in Classics from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and a B.A. in Greek from the College of Charleston. He served as editor of Chronicles: a Magazine of American Culture from 1984 to 2015 and president of The Rockford Institute from 1997-2014. In a previous life he taught classics at several colleges and served as a school headmaster in South Carolina

40 Responses

  1. Jacob Johnson says:

    I would have figures the controversy surrounding this event would be something like a left wing agitator getting killed, but since all that Jefferson Airplane/Rage Against The Machine stuff has been promoted as a value by the synthetic culture industry for fifty years, I find none of it terribly surprising. There is much talk from right wingers/moderate jacobins about taking the “country” back. Taking power would not be a desirable thing to do because modern man is too stupid to exercise it. The best to be hoped for is a situation where non-revolutionaries have their own decently constructed cocoons in which hopefully they can take control of themselves and their own minds as the leftists coalition sits at the steering wheel of The Big Stupid. This episode fits well into the fable of a botched civilization where a large economic zone with the window dressing of a nation state happens to have the largest military in the world, available for hire to the highest bidder. I won’t be loosing sleep over any of it.

  2. Robert Reavis says:

    Our political leaders from both sides like Chuck Schumer and Mitch McConnell to Bill Clinton and Bush Younger were accurately described years ago by Evelyn Waugh. And “Anyone” who could put their hope in a political party that elected them or even a reform of a party that elected them, is beyond hope and deserves the current, but only apparent, period of despair.

    “He wasn’t a complete human being at all. He was a tiny bit of one, unnaturally developed; something in a bottle, an organ kept alive in a laboratory. I thought he was a sort of primitive savage, but he was something absolutely modern and up-to-date that only this ghastly age could produce. A tiny bit of a man pretending he was the whole.”
    Evelyn Waugh, Brideshead Revisited

  3. Dom says:

    Point #4 seems a little generous. From the pictures I have seen, I wouldn’t put the damage (broken doors and windows) past a few thousand bucks. BLM/Antifa probably top that just getting out of their SUVs. And those outfits manage to profit by their events in looted merchandise and government concessions. Not sure what yesterday’s event could have benefited any of those involved.
    The whole thing is disgraceful, but given the death and destruction we have witnessed these last few years it is difficult to care much.

  4. Avatar photo Thomas Fleming says:

    You are certainly correct as to the quantity of damage, but what in the world were they thinking of? I suppose the more radical imagined they could stand up to electoral fraud and judicial weakness and corruption by taking direct action. It is an ancient maxim that we can easily become the mirror-image of what we think we hate. For decades, conservatives have deplored the misbehavior of a certain minority group, which has now become the model for their own actions. Yes, it is difficult to care, and
    I don’t. But it is one more sign, if we needed any, that so-called conservatives and racialists are transforming themselves into washed out knock-offs of the groups they despise. Benefits? I suppose the great benefit is the feeling of solidarity and importance they derive from putting on the uniform and acting as a mob. I remember a neurotic graduate student I knew in the late 60’s. For weeks, he expressed his contempt for the anti-war demonstrators until one day they asked him to join them. He was hooked in a minute.

  5. Avatar photo Thomas Fleming says:

    What was it Max Beerbohm says in Zuleika Dobson? You can’t turn a sheep into a man by standing it on its hind legs, but a crowd of men could be turned into a flock of sheep.

  6. Jacob Johnson says:

    The grifters from MAGA inc. lost control of their cannon fodder. Those people are misled by charlatans who do not deserve their support. Everyone who entered the building is toast ( queue Price Is Right music and announcer saying “Free baloney sandwiches for life!”)but they made their choices. Reasonable people have warned the American public , but who listens. Sending hundreds from a political faction to con college will help with the egalitarian dream of third-worldization. Once you have a picture of a grinning, shirtless man in a viking helmet at the head of the house chamber there is no going back from that. When for decades McDonald’s employs teams of neuroscientists to develop ways to break down the public’s self-control in order to get them to buy things, should it shock anyone?

  7. Allen Wilson says:

    Wow. I hadn’t paid any attention to the rally or the news. I didn’t know until now that they actually made it all the way in.

    This will just give the bolshevik rulers an excuse to increase “security” nationwide.

  8. Allen Wilson says:

    But I must say that seeing pictures of scared congress”men” and congressesses was quite satisfying. At least the Jacobins got a taste of their own medicine for a change.

  9. Robert Reavis says:

    Mr Johnson,
    Your comments are wise in my opinion. The current anger is more pronounced but will continue growing because the left has a plan, they are organized and experienced in countering every reaction or ignoring the reaction, whichever best advances the revolution. Also they are audacious and have no fear because the herd is running wild alongside them. This is how one of them put it years ago to their betters who even then were just barely a part of the public thing. It was unusually honest and open but none the less descriptive in its methods and purposes.

    “Creative destruction is our middle name, both within our own society and abroad. We tear down the old order every day, from business to science, literature, art, architecture, and cinema to politics and the law. Our enemies have always hated this whirlwind of energy and creativity, which menaces their traditions (whatever they may be) and shames them for their inability to keep pace. Seeing America undo traditional societies, they fear us, for they do not wish to be undone. They cannot feel secure so long as we are there, for our very existence—our existence, not our politics—threatens their legitimacy. They must attack us in order to survive, just as we must destroy them to advance our historic mission.”

  10. Gregory Fogg says:

    I am an opponent of public “civil disobedience”. That being said, it was interesting that the news sources I have seen referred to yesterday’s participants as “rioters” and not “demonstrators” and that no one wanted to emphasize that the participants were “mostly peaceful”.

  11. Josh Doggrell says:

    It’s good to see intelligent exchanges about this after suffering through the mass media’s accounts.

  12. Dot says:

    I think it is wrong to call out the American people as idiots. Biden was and is beholden to high tech, and social media like Facebook, Amazon and Twitter. They contributed billions towards his election. In addition, the media throughout this entire election cycle wasted no time denigrating Pres. Trump. I wish media could be called to task for this because it is a high responsibility to the people and yet they freely slanted their opinions by reporting in favor of Biden. Meanwhile, media was quiet about Biden and son’s dealings with China.
    We don’t know exactly where the demonstrators came from. I am guessing they came from that large swarth of states in the middle of the country. It was obvious they were angry. Angry because of the leftist Marxist direction of where this country is headed and it’s affect on our freedoms. They were wrong to damage property but I can still understand the anger of the moment and the thousands who were their lead to this destruction.
    These people who demonstrated were not like the elite members of the Democratic party who can also claim the minions who want or need government assistance. This group of elite Democrats actually need the needy to actualize their agenda. This class is the professorial class and it is taking over the working class instead of vice/versa. They are all those who can influence others and change minds especially in the classroom.
    Already, Biden is moving to make laws to quell descent and the voice of the people.
    Worst of all are the Republicans who have distanced themselves from Trump for their own selfish reasons to remain in office.
    Politics is dirty and it was shown in 2020.

  13. Harry Colin says:

    When this nonsense was happening Wednesday I turned to a couple of supposedly “conservative outlets” on TV. I heard all about Facebook and Twitter censoring or blocking Trump, and how Antifa and BLM behavior was worse than this protest at the capitol. Perhaps it is just me, but I thought “so what?” Yes, the rioters in the streets were worse – they are disgusting excuses for civilized people – but such comments are like complaining to the officer about to write you a ticket for speeding that you were passed by a guy going 100. It doesn’t excuse you.

    Why worry about these social media platforms; why are we even using these commercial enterprises run by geeky billionaires who despise Western Civilization? Why play with their bat and ball? Not long ago there was much ado about Netflix and their disgusting content. Why use them? Our complaining about these platforms while continuing to utilize and enrich their owners is madness.

    As for armed insurrection, I know of dozens of people who have told me they support the idea and sound very bold in their defiance. Yet, they do not currently own any firearms, or if they do, never go to the range and practice. Most of them would not be able to load and fire my Kimber .45, nor hit my neighbor’s garage door from 15 feet if they could pull the trigger.

  14. Robert Geraci says:

    I have just read, coincidental to what is occurring since it was written in 1978 but seems as if it was written just this past year, John Senior’s The Death of Christian Culture recommended to me for an entirely different reason by good friend Chris Check – I had asked him if he could recommend a list of books for children to read that are being home-schooled and Senior provides such a list at the end of that book. I am in the middle of the sequel, The Restoration of Christian Culture. I am indebted to Chris for recommending these books to me because the diagnosis that Senior provides and certainly his remedy echoes much of what Dr. Fleming has been advising for quite a long time. I’ll paraphrase. We walked away from God with unbridled hubris and adopted all the evil that Modernism presents. Remedy. Throw a brick into the television set, have dinner with your family, sit in front of the fireplace and talk to one another, grow a garden and prepare food together, and put God back into your life. It’s not a despairing thing to do to admit that current society is lost; it’s despairing if you let that determine how you live. I would be foolish to say there won’t be more and more constraints put on us in how we are permitted to live our lives, but whatever these may be we have the tools and brains to figure out how to live regardless of what these may be. Senior’s thesis is that however more difficult life was like in its roughness, disease and hardships just a few centuries ago, life was richer then for it existed in small communities whose inhabitants knew how to value what was important. We have no choice but to do all we can to emulate such behavior. In that we are luckier than any of the fools who like being sheep whose defining feature is they don’t know they are sheep. We are lucky indeed.

  15. Mark Atkins says:

    Tom, you can be depressing as hell. oxoxo

  16. Avatar photo Thomas Fleming says:

    What is depressing is the naive idiocy of the American people, left and right, who have allowed themselves to be deceived by preposterous lies and to burn incense to the idols the regime has made. I have maintained my cheerfulness for the past 50 years in which I have maintained a clear vision of what the country is and is becoming. Today in Gibbon (last volume) we read of the Mongol eruption into Russia, Poland, and Hungary–after the destruction of hundreds of cities in China, Persia, Syria, Iraq. A knowledge of history gives the student a perspective on his own problems.

  17. Kellen Buckles says:

    The guy in the viking hat on the House podium is being used by some on the Right as proof that he was an Antifa plant, even with pictures of him at a BLM protest. But just so none of us are fooled by this, it must be stated that the cropping of that BLM photo excised the fact that he was a counter-protester. In fact, he is one of those Q-Anon fanatics who have poisoned the minds of so many on the Right. I only add this so you can caution your well-meaning family and friends.

  18. Christopher Check says:

    “What a great way for Christian conservatives to celebrate Epiphany.”

    Bullseye, Tom.

    When I took the helm of Catholic Answers, I took a page from The Rockford Institute playbook and moved our office Christmas party to Epiphany. Because the ideologue in Sacramento seeks to destroy every livelihood he can to cement the dependence of the California working class on government largesse, all the bars and restaurants are shuttered. No matter. We started with a midday Latin Mass after which we convened in our back parking lot, which my events crew had most festively transformed complete with canopies, a full bar, a fire pit, and a street-taco station manned by a crew from St. Anne’s in Bario Logan. Alas, no lengua or tripa, but superb nonetheless. In full SoCal mode we played the Ventures’ Christmas album, sang karaoke (which, I think, Tom likes to call, “Care Oh Kee”), and had a white elephant gift exchange. For some reason, more than half the gifts this year were fermented or distilled—must be the office culture. The evening went on into the night around the fire with guitars and folk songs. One of my video guys broke out the cigarettes. Reminded I was and very much of our Summer School parking lot parties at 928 North Main.

    At one point in the evening, I turned to the bright young hippy kid who manages our Twitter and Facebook and all the rest of that noise and asked him if he had posted cool pictures of our Epiphany celebration.

    “Do you think I should?” he asked me “given what’s going on at the Capitol.”

    What’s going on at the Capitol?” I asked him.

    Robert has it right. Put a brick through the TV and start living the liturgical calendar. Here’s a concrete suggestion, a practice Fr. Hugh introduced at CA: Start praying Lauds and Vespers every day. The more you do the more you will tune out of the enervating din and more into the divine order.

  19. Robert Reavis says:

    Dear Mr. Geraci,
    Your observations are correct in my opinion. I have had the privilege and blessing to know both of the men you mention, Tom Fleming and John Senior, they were both educated in the classics of their civilization and knew the importance of culture and tradition compared to the hype of the passing national news or politics of the day which is only a reflection of our decadence.
    Their lives are also an example of the variety of characters one finds in a educational culture that passes on their traditions by understanding them instead of destroying them. The fear that a real study of our classical curriculum would lead to uniformity or lack creative genius or lead to systematic …… ( just fill in the blank!) is pure nonsense rebutted by thousands of years of art, architecture, history, poetry, music theology and literature. It’s been my greatest reward in the life long experience of education and friendship to have known men like Tom Fleming and John Senior. It would seem ungrateful to pay more attention on the feast of Epiphany to some poor misguided soul wearing Viking horns and animal skins visiting “the people’s house” to the visit of the Kings from the East visiting the house if God.

  20. Andrew G Van Sant says:

    Just a variation of the 80-20 rule. 80 percent of the population is being manipulated by the elite 20 percent.

  21. Andrew G Van Sant says:

    The Kirk organization has one of Russell Kirk’s essays about Humane Literature for young readers available on its website.

  22. Robert Reavis says:

    Dear Mr. Van Zant,
    It is good to see your posts pop up here. I enjoy your frank and earnest comments. I suppose manipulation is part of it but forced compliance is gathering steam too.

  23. Andrew G Van Sant says:

    But acceptance of forced compliance is achieved by manipulating people into believing the compliance is necessary.

  24. Patrick Kinnell says:

    Thank you Dr. Fleming for this post. What you say should not cause us to be depressed. It is much more akin to having someone give us smelling salts to bring back us to reality.

  25. JD Salyer says:

    I certainly agree with Dr. Fleming that “EverTrumper” is not a viable political brand. The protestors are just angry, and so lack any long term plan. (If we are serious about small-r republican government, then the ultimate goal should not be to get our guy (or gal) in the Supreme Court or White House, but to make a world where we don’t have to fret endlessly about who is on the Court or in the WH. Since we’re dreaming, we might as well dream of dismantling the Beltway apparatus, not of conquering it.)

    Just to be clear, I never even found time to attend a MAGA rally over the past 4+ years, and never for a moment considered going to the protest — I find it hard to speak too sharply about people who did. They have been told over and over again that they live in a democracy, and that their vote counts. What do we expect them to do when they are told that the election was stolen?

    Whether it actually was or not I’ve no idea. I do know that at times it seems as if the Establishment is daring grassroots Middle Americans to take extra-legal action, by de facto excluding them from the political process. Flyover Country elects a senator and he betrays it; a referendum is held, but if the Middle Americans win in the face of massive media and institutional opposition, rest assured there’ll be a “do-over” a couple years later; on the rare occasion when legislators actually follow through, the courts sweep in and declare whatever it is Middle Americans fought to put into law unconstitutional. In effect, the message sent is that who we are is, per se, “unconstitutional.” Meanwhile it is understood by all that whatever the Left wants is always just a matter of time.

    These protests really were mostly peaceful, and while I don’t know anyone who went, my impression is that those who attended are doing their best to work within the system, even though they believe it is rigged against them.

    My inclination is not to blame foot-soldiers, but leadership — i.e., “conservative” establishment intellectuals. For decades, such people have gotten celebrity status by chumming with the Left, even as they unscrupulously exploited the legitimate anxieties of Middle America. These journalists & intellectuals have distorted the truth about the American regime, and ensured that a rather large segment of the American population have no advocate, no real voice. What happened this past week was the logical result, no?

  26. Ken Rosenberger says:

    Dr Fleming, thank you for this column. My own outrage about this election reached a peak last night, watching Tucker Carlson discuss the already-begun crackdown on social media.

    Then, this morning I saw that a Canadian I follow on Twitter, Kevin Michael Grace, speaking with regard to what comes next, was recommending to people a reading of Georges Sorel. I was reminded that I was introduced to Sorel the first time I journeyed to Rockford for one of your schools in 2013. That was a happy occasion for me, when I so much enjoyed the lectures and there began (what I can say with certainly, nearly 8 years later) many of the best friendships in my life. I think a lot of the authors we read for that school are worth revisiting, as we begin the Biden-Harris reign.

    The late Claude Polin gave a lecture on Sorel, of course, he is interesting, but I think of some other works then discussed even more so. Dr Patrick gave a memorable lecture on Tolkien and there is never a bad time to reread LOTR. In fact, weren’t Frodo and Gandalf booted off Twitter along with Trump the other day? Fr Hugh discussed Bernanos, whose heroic and dying young priest sees God’s Grace everywhere. Fr Hugh also introduced me to Gironella’s long and enthralling novel “The Cypresses Believe in God,” about the divided communities in Spain in the five years leading up to the 1936-39 civil war. I have read it twice, and the picture he presents of a Republican Catalonian town is eerily similar (even down to their level of wokeness) to what we are seeing now, although to my knowledge we should not assume that we have a general like Franco organizing even now at one of America’s many distant imperial outposts to restore MAGA (or some other semblance of the better country we think we remember).

    There were other authors discussed who were fascinating: Eliot, Pound, Junger, Barres, Spengler, etc., and we could do worse than to revisit some of those.

    I of course remember Dr Brownlow’s talks on Anthony Powell and his masterpiece A Dance to the Music of Time. Dr Brownlow spoke of Powell’s own ability to remain calm, live his life, focus for 25 years on his 12-novel cycle (I’m on my 4th reading), and take the long view of England’s fifty years of decline and fall.

    And of course there is Powell’s great villain, Kenneth Widmerpool. In Joe Biden, we certainly have our own Widmerpool, about to take his rightful place in the office so long denied him by Deplorables and Xenophobes and small-minded isolationists, and, boy, is he going to make us pay for all those years of underestimating him.

    Of course, at this point in Joe’s life, he is very much in his Scorp Murlock phase, racing to stay at the fore of the movement he pretends to lead (to the dubious skepticism of AOC & the Squad). I doubt that Biden has ever read Dance, because if he had, he would have spoken of having been insulted and traumatized at Oxford, during his Rhodes Scholarship years, for having an overcoat of such unusual cut, in one of his imaginative autobios. I don’t know if anyone in the Secret Service has read Powell, so they may need to be reminded to monitor the new president closely whenever he goes out for his morning run.

  27. Robert Reavis says:

    Lovely reflection Mr . Rosenberg and thank you for posting it. Your reference to “l “The Cypresses Believe in God,” was indeed a blast from the past for me. They were a tough crowd and I remember one line from reading it years ago when a mother tells one of her sons awaiting breakfast at her table but who also is refusing to enlist in the effort to save Spain from the revolutionaries, “ I don’t serve cowards!” Some have dismissed the novel as a Spanish version of America’s Gone with the Wind, but then again, of course they would. Thanks again for the post.

  28. Avatar photo Thomas Fleming says:

    Jerry, it is good to hear from you. I agree with you and basically said so in my first sentence: “The people who organized the demonstration and those, like the President, who merely agitated for it, must have known that whatever took place would play into the hands of the incoming administration and the media that represents them.” Point number 3, also: “Those who organize and agitate for these demonstrations are responsible for what the fringe element does, especially if they have not taken any of the necessary precautions.”

    However, in saying that many, perhaps most, of the demonstrators were ordinary Americans, I am far from praising them for leaving their everyday responsibilities to go to Washington in the absurd hope that they could effect some change. In essence, they were imitating the 60’s kids who protested war and in general the way things are by refusing to bathe and littering the streets of major cities. I am not opposed to a revolution, necessarily, but the rules of just war would apply, e.g., one has to know that one is right–not a one of these good people could prove the election was stolen: They simply believe; the war has to be winnable–that is pretty laughable at this point; and the harm caused by the fighting must outweigh the benefits of a victory. No, despite all the talk of “armed insurrection,” these people were simply imitating the tactics of Thoreau, Gandhi, and ML King–three anti-Christian gurus the world would have been a better without them. They asked for what they got and are getting. We didn’t ask for it, but we shall have to suffer the consequences of their folly.

  29. Jacob Johnson says:

    The left is rather grumpy because the bubble of their revolutionary fervor has been popped and the quotes of Pelosi/Harris etc. encouraging rioting are being held against them. Various right wingers are pouty because their Twitter has gone away and they have to find something productive to do, as if that is tyranny. Personally, I think people would do well to get rid of this notion of liberty in the modern sense. Things like complete freedom of movement I don’t think are a natural condition. For years, one of my favorite recreational activities has been to go for big long walks, wandering randomly into the roads of the countryside. Many times I have been stopped by authorities under suspicion of casing farms out for theft. I would explain what I was doing, ask if there was a reason they would not like me in the area and where they would recommend a better location for walking would be. The exchanges were always friendly and polite and I never had any trouble, but if I had started crying about rights and what they can’t make me do, like the people who stand on the corner with a sign, I would have been held in contempt. Let’s put it this way, it would be interesting to see what would happen if congress passed an amendment stating that all Americans have the right to stand on the street corner and hit themselves in the head with a hammer as many times as they would like.

  30. Jacob Johnson says:

    Mr. Geraci’s paraphrase of that book is very well put and is something I wish all the FOX News watchers were forced to read. In reference to Mr. Wilson’s point of the cowering congressmen, I have seen pictures captioned with “These are the people who send your children to war.” Lets add to that they are also the people who foment color revolutions in other people’s homes and not let them forget that.

  31. Joe Porreca says:

    “These are the people who send your children to war.”

    Maybe a good first step in reform would be to discourage young Americans from becoming canon fodder for these people.

  32. Allen Wilson says:

    Well said, Mr Johnson

    As for Biden, I’m certain that he will be a laughingstock no matter what happens. His stupid antics will only further weaken the legitimacy of the presidency and the government in they eyes of the people. You have to go back a ways to find a head of state so evil yet so incompetent, who is also losing his mind. One might feel sorry for anyone else who was suffering from mental decline, but how can anyone feel sorry for someone so evil?

  33. Dot says:

    We all have it within us to display at least one of the deadly sins. We don’t think of them much but maybe we ought to.

  34. Allen Wilson says:

    I’ve been seeing claims that antifa had infiltrated the crowd, or that there were what amounted to agents provocateur involved, that it was a false flag operation, none of which would be the least bit surprising. I saw one video where it really does look like capitol guards pulled back a barrier and let the crowd through onto the capitol grounds. Another video, which according to the blogger who put it on his site, was of a guard leading protesters into the building, looked more to me like the guard was just retreating before them until he got some backup. In the end it doesn’t matter. Either way, the regime got the Reichstag fire it wanted.

  35. Avatar photo Thomas Fleming says:

    Agents provocateurs from both sides will always gravitate to a social disturbance, but, from what I have been reading from conservatives on Facebook for the past weeks, they were hardly needed. Trump set the example of unbridled egotism and childish indiscipline, and none of his people appear to have been able to talk sense to him. All the sore losers crying foul created the climate for another Great Lie myth, which is exactly what the Democrats needed to justify a power-grab. Let us be reasonable. Take a deep breath and recall that the Republican and Conservative leadership for 40 years has championed the free-trade-open-borders policies that have produced a demographic and social transformation. When my friends–Sam Francis, Peter Brimelow, and others–offered grounds for resistance, the Conservative leadership anathematized us, and the two heads of the biggest GOP think tanks tried hard to get me fired. Back in the days when Gingrich, Kemp, and Bennet were the shining lights of principled conservatism, the party and the movement had sold out the country. All the “kvetching” in the world cannot retrieve the lost opportunities of the 1980s and 1990s. The Democrats now have a power base of government dependents–aliens, African-Americans, promiscuous women, military officers, school teachers, bureaucrats–which gives them nearly 50% of the votes if they run the rotting skeleton of Roy Rogers’ Trigger. Sure, they probably managed to steal enough votes to put them over the top this time around, but it is hardly necessary in the long run, especially when we have the Magats and their single-minded campaign to prove to the world that ordinary Americans cannot be trusted with authority over their own lives. I’m sure everyone knows the old Confucianist parable about the old rulers who realized before they could run the kingdom of China, they had to manage the dukedoms properly, and so on down the line to the level of household and finally to call things by their right name. When a sizable number of Christian Conservatives are willing to face reality, they might have a chance of influencing public policy, but so long as they run after Steve Bannon and his even more preposterous imitators, they can only serve as second bananas to the lead actors in the revolution.

  36. JD Salyer says:

    Dr. Fleming,

    This venue is surely a welcome reprieve from the news — which I am not always able to avoid, more’s the pity. Thank you for reiterating your observations about the organizers, I will mull over them for a while. I suppose one lesson from all this might be that however justified the passion, the strategies of those seeking to keep something alive must necessarily differ from the strategies of those who seek merely to tear things down.

  37. Jacob Johnson says:

    The left said the same thing about their riots. Supposedly the first guy to smash open the window of an Auto Zone was a “Neo-Not-C” Meaning a drug addict who went to prison and got a tattoo, and knows absolutely nothing about world war two or the Shickelgruber regime. The fact that this caused all the leftist destruction and murder after they were put up to it was supposed to excuse them. Teacher it’s not my fault! An older boy told me to do it! He Did it first!

    What did you expect would happen? This is a question both/all sides could be asking themselves. Like when a man dates a woman he met snorting cocaine of a toilet seat at a bar and is shocked when it doesn’t work out. I broke into the capital with a mob and now I’m getting arrested? What did you expect would happen? “There are enough unhinged people in America, on both sides, to match all the Muslim terrorists in the world.” This is certainly true. I went to high school with kids who would do things like stand in front of trains and jump out of the way at the last moment for fun. It’s all over the place. So you encourage mobs to go to middle America and smash it up and then they come to your town and smash up your Temple to Briber……oops, I mean Democracy? What did you expect would happen? Fortunately, everybody I’ve come across in the past few days around town has been completely oblivious to the events. This is a good sign.

  38. Robert Reavis says:

    Mr. Salyer,
    This well said “I suppose one lesson from all this might be that however justified the passion, the strategies of those seeking to keep something alive must necessarily differ from the strategies of those who seek merely to tear things down.”
    As Clyde Wilson has never tired of reminding readers :, if the beginning is more than half the whole, the GOP has demonstrated from their very beginning to this very day , it has let everyone know whether they wish them well or ill, that the GOP shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, betray any friend, support any foe, in order to assure their survival and success.” To paraphrase the late JFK. But regardless of who said it first, it remains true today and Trump told us from the beginning that he loved winning and would win so much that eventually Americans would get tired of his winning ways. And at least enough of those those who matter in our current environment grew tired of his winning ways. As Pat Buchanan recently noted “ and they (The GOP) will never ever allow him back again.”

  39. Allen Wilson says:

    ” to call things by their right name”

    I wouldn’t know where to start with that using Chinese literature, but for us in the west, it means Plato and Aristotle.

    As for the video I mentioned above, I now suspect that the guard and the lead intruder were working together to lure the protesters in the immediate area into the building. It looks like a setup. Nevertheless, that sort of thing happens so often in modern times that it is quite boring to think about and try to decide what really happened. I have a hard time even caring nowadays. We all know the republic is long lost, civilisation is dead, so why get caught up in the details of ephemera?

    Having said that, however, I have a nagging feeling that the regime, both full of hubris and terrified that it is losing it’s grip on power, is overplaying it’s hand, not just with this Reichstag fire but with every thing else, and that this will cause blowback that even the Trumpers can’t see coming. I really don’t believe they will be able to handle a collapse like what happened in the Soviet Union.

  40. Dom says:

    It would be interesting to know what media AOC used to coordinate her attack on Nancy Pelosi’s office once upon a time. Maybe that was done the old fashioned way, leaving AOC protected from online censure. Perhaps I am mistaken, but I seem to recall Pelosi had to barricade herself in her office for some time.

    From Politico 11/13/2018:

    More than 200 youth activists, flanked by Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, flooded House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s office this morning urging Democrats to act more decisively on climate change.

    Capitol Police said they arrested 51 protesters for unlawfully demonstrating outside Pelosi’s office in the Cannon House Office Building. The arrests began a few hours after the demonstration began, when protesters refused to leave the area. Pelosi said she welcomed the protest and called on the police “to allow them to continue to organize and participate in our democracy.”