Wednesday, November 09, 2016

Hillary: on the wrong side of history

The good news: Hillary lost. The bad news: Trump won.

Trump has consistently outperformed expectations, confounding the pros. Because I don't think like most voters, I can't extrapolate from my personal frame of reference to make reliable predictions. So I turn to the pros. But they were wrong. 

It's a relief that Hillary lost. She posed a more imminent threat than Trump. It's like a situation in which you will have to wage war with two hostile states. The question is the order in which to do it. You make a temporary alliance with one hostile state to defeat a common enemy. That way, you survive to fight another day. Having defeated the common enemy, the next war will be between you and your temporary military ally.  

The GOP will hold the House–as well as the Senate, although I don't know if it will have a working majority. The GOP had some pickups in gubernatorial races. 

Now we'll find out for real how many of Trump's campaign promises he intends to keep. Given that he's been on both sides of most issues, he could simultaneously keep all his campaign promises and break all his campaign promises. 

Seriously, because conservatives probably have little or no direct leverage with Trump, if he reverts to his default liberalism, it will be necessary for conservatives to use whatever leverage they have with Republicans in the House and Senate to counterbalance There's no love lost between Ryan and Trump, so there's no reason to assume Ryan will just roll over. (Not that Ryan is all that great.) In addition, we need to exert whatever leverage we can at the state level. 

I don't know for sure why Hillary lost. Her abrasive personality and her arrogant attitude that she's above the law no doubt contributed. I also suspect that Obamacare is a constant drag on the ticket.

But in addition, the secular progressives overplayed their hand. They felt they were on a winning streak, so they stayed at the table and the kept upping the ante. 

This election gave us a temporary reprieve, but nothing is permanent in politics. A live grenade like Trump is quite capable of leading the GOP to a disaster in 2018 or 2020. 


  1. With President Trump, conservatives are virtually guaranteed to learn how to sympathize with king Pyrrhus of Epirus.

  2. As a Briton, I cannot quite bring myself to say, 'Well done, America!' If I were American, being a conservative at heart, I would not have voted for either Clinton or Trump. But I certainly can say I am pleased the more evil option has failed in her bid to become President.

    On Mr. Trump, I will say one thing in response to an objection I have heard from Christian conservatives who are concerned Trump's marriage covenant-breaking tendencies will be repeated with his pre-election promises. I would tentatively venture that his vanity may well mean he keeps his pre-election promises. I believe Trump's promises before the people will matter far more to him than his promises to his wives before a holy God.

  3. A facebook friend posted the following link to a hillary-ous picture:

    Also, on facebook Ken Gentry posted a link to the scene in The Wizard of Oz where the munchkins sing "Ding Dong the Witch is Dead, the Witch is Dead, the Witch is Dead. Ding Dong the Wicked Witch is Dead!"

    Watching Hillary lose was and is SOOOO satisfying.

  4. I don't know for sure why Hillary lost.

    He worked his butt off and he connected with lots and lots of people who ended up voting for him.

  5. Yep, I was wrong about Trump's prospects of winning. Hindsight is 20/20. I have redneck cousins in Florida who have been life-long Democrat voters. They live on welfare. A few weeks ago they said they were voting for Trump. Why? Because he talks about white people, jobs, and doesn't want to cut any entitlements. I didn't think this would resonate with enough to give Trump any real chances, as I followed the polls. But I was wrong.

    I remain skeptical of the good he will do and I think he won for the wrong reasons (a pipe-dream of bringing back manufacturing, for instance). But at the same time I have to acknowledge that with a Republican Senate and House Trump has the potential to do good. And if nothing else he has already done us the good thing of discrediting the media (it will be interesting to see how long that lasts or whether Trump puts his foot in his mouth and ends up rebuilding their credibility).

    Either way, I'm celebrating today to see the hopes of one of the most corrupt politicians of our era dashed and the leftist elites receive a thumbed nose (or ruder gesture) from the American public.

  6. intra-Left fractures on a variety of issues have not gotten much attention (yet) in the post-mortem analyses. I've been reading just enough stuff left, right and center that one of the recurring complaints of the Old Left against HRC is that her New Left constituencies sold out the working class to the corruptions of the financial sector and then pretended that contempt for the working class could never possible boomerang back on them in the form of an opposition candidate with a relentlessly populist appeal (real or not).