09 December 2016

Fake History Makes Fake News

Screen shot of the New York Times website I took with my iPhone November 8, 2016. Facts are stubborn things.

Kevin Levin has written an interesting post at Smithsonian.com regarding the chattering classes' new mantra in the wake of the 2016 election: "fake news." First of all, we get the broad brush criticism of the American Voter:

"the American voter is woefully lacking in the skills needed to judge the veracity of a news website."

I read that as a not-so-subtle way of saying that Trump will be the new president because stupid people elected him. The statement could be interpreted as just more of the type of elitist attitude that created Trump's populist movement in the first place. As Karol Markowicz writing in the
New York Post put it:

Scrambling for an explanation for Donald Trump’s victory, many in the media and on the left [including academia] have settled on the idea that his supporters were consumers of “fake news” — gullible rubes living in an alternate reality made Trump president. [Emphasis mine]
It's all so predictable, isn't it? But if we take Levin's comment at face value, it's important to note that "most American voters" have been educated by the "education establishment". If the American voter is "lacking in skills", the education establishment is, in large measure, to blame, is it not?

Levin offers up the following examples of Fake News:
Among the many headlines from fake news websites include reports that, Pope Francis endorsed President-elect Trump, Hillary Clinton used a body double throughout the campaign, and sold weapons to ISIS.
Yes, there are real "fake news" sites and, yes, there are many pushing myths about American history. Levin points out several of these in his piece. But what's more interesting to me than the examples Levin provides are the examples Levin leaves out about "Fake News." Mercy, where do we start?

How about Brian Williams (formerly the darling of the lefty nightly news) who made false claims about his experiences covering the war in Iraq?

How about NBC maliciously editing the George Zimmerman 911 call?

How about the recent Rolling Stone rape hoax, for which they've been successfully sued?

I could go on; Dan Rather, Jayson Blair (NYT), NBC's staged truck fire for which they, too, were successfully sued by GM, the outrageous fake polls leading up to this election, - it just never ends. Odd, isn't it, how the left has suddenly had a "come to Jesus" moment regarding "honest" news? It's laughable. It's also absolutely absurd. Fake news sites can be easily discredited. Not so with traditional news outlets pushing an agenda.

While it's obvious that mainstream media organizations have lost a lot of credibility (and it gets worse with each passing day) and influence over the last 10 years, does anyone seriously believe that "fake news" on outlier websites, blogs and Facebook pages have more impact on American voters than do major media outlets?

Levin finishes up his piece by advising that the remedy for "fake news" is better history education:

Teaching our students how to discern the difference will not only help them steer clear of fake history and fake news, but reinforce the importance of a responsible and informed citizenry.
On it's face, I agree with that conclusion. But, as they say, the devil is in the details. At least 50% of Americans believe the "fake news" mantra now being preached is itself "fake" and meant to distract from the real source of "fake news" - the mainstream media - as well as to console those on the left over getting their butts kicked in the recent election. The "fake news" slogan now reverberating through the echo chambers of academia, the mainstream media and elites in government is simply their way of assigning responsibility to anyone or anything other than themselves for their epic defeat. It's all so self-serving and transparent. As predictable as it is, it is also extremely irresponsible. As journalist and attorney Glenn Greenwald recently pointed out, the term "fake news" is often used as a label with nefarious political motivations:
The phrase “Fake News” has exploded in usage since the election, but the term is similar to other malleable political labels such as “terrorism” and “hate speech”; because the phrase lacks any clear definition, it is essentially useless except as an instrument of propaganda and censorship. The most important fact to realize about this new term: those who most loudly denounce Fake News are typically those most aggressively disseminating it.
In other words, the self-appointed "fixers" for "fake news", i.e. the "real" media, the education establishment, big government types and academia, are actually a YUGE part of the problem. Academia is, in many ways, in bed with the mainstream media and share the same systemic faults as their mainstream media soulmates. Professor Victor Davis Hanson recently pointed this out in a brilliant piece titled: "Universities and the media: arrogant, ignorant, and ripe for reform." He writes:
The university and the media share two traits: Both industries have become arrogant and ignorant. We have created a climate, ethically and professionally, in which extremism has bred extremism, and bias is seen not as proof of journalistic and academic corruption, but of political purity. The recent election, and especially its aftermath, embarrassed journalists and academics alike — and should not be forgotten.
In the aftermath, they have learned nothing and forgotten nothing, as they insist that the popular vote alone should have mattered, that the Russians stole the election, that there was voting fraud, but only in the swing states Trump won, or that Democrats did not emphasize identity politics enough — anything other than the truth that a now municipal Democratic party is run by apartheid coastal elites and fueled by identity politics, and that journalists and professors cannot keep society’s trust.
There is, of course, ample proof that journalists "cannot keep society's trust." A recent Gallup poll revealed that Americans' trust in the mainstream media is at an all time low. And Hanson's including of "professors" [academia] same problem is valid as well, and for the same reasons as historian Gordon S. Wood has noted:
The people who came out of the ‘60s are currently in control of the profession and it’s has become essentially race-class-gender issues. Now, a new generation will come along and they’ll want to contest that. . . . But you can’t do much else and still have a career. It’s very difficult for young people to want to work on more traditional subjects. . . . We are cutting ourselves off from the general public [reality] and that's lamentable.
Professor Wood also points out that . . .
College students and many historians have become obsessed with inequality . . . And this obsession has seriously affected the writing of American history. The inequalities of race and gender now permeate much of academic history-writing, so much so that the general reading public that wants to learn about the whole of our nation’s past has had to turn to history books written by nonacademics who have no Ph.D.s and are not involved in the incestuous conversations of the academic scholars.
While I don't want to put words into Wood's mouth and while he does not call what is being taught "fake history", one might infer that as he comes fairly close by noting that many academic historians are not teaching "the whole of our nation's past." Others have been more direct:
What most frustrates Americans is that we are a happy, optimistic, can-do people ceaselessly harangued by media solons, delusional academics, post-sovereign Eurocrats, and the Democrats who love them. While we free and feed the world, they can’t tell us enough that we’re racist, imperialist, torturing louts. We know it’s a libel, an endless stream of slander. But we also know it’s an absurd libel. We’re tired of hearing it, but taking it too seriously would give it power it doesn’t deserve. ~ Andrew McCarthy (National Review)
Bottom line: many academics, "historians" and "journalists" are proposing the wrong solution for the wrong problem. In a very ironic way, both the problem and the solution are staring back at them from the mirror, and yet they can't (or don't want to) see it.

05 December 2016

More on Trump's Historic Upset (Help for the Delusional)

The elites in academia, Hollywood, the media and government are still recovering from Donald J. Trump's historic upset victory last month. After 99% of all the above predicted a Clinton landslide and the death of the Republican Party, the EXACT opposite has transpired. It's an amazing thing to behold. The left continues to have a meltdown. Note the following screen shot from the "History" News Network this morning:

They STILL don't get it. Here's the moronic narrative now coming from academia: White evangelicals are stupid, white women are stupid and Trump voters are Nazis. Unbelievable. (Along these same lines, I'll post some commentary about a recent lecture at Harvard by Civil War historian, David Blight very soon. It's classic.)

While I maintain that most of these elites are so out of touch, that they still can't get their minds around what's happened, there are a few who seem to be making an attempt. This piece at Slate, for example, has some real money quotes about reality:
The Democrats will now control next to nothing above the municipal level. Donald Trump will be president. We are going to be unpacking this night for the rest of our lives, and lives beyond that. We can’t comprehend even 1 percent of what’s just happened. But one aspect of it, minor in the overall sweep, that I’m pretty sure we can comprehend well enough right now: The Democratic Party establishment has beclowned itself and is finished.
And . . .
Think of how wrong the entire national media [and most academic historians in the blogosphere as well - same club] conversation was . . . about how the Republicans were being torn apart as a party. . . . This was wrong. Republicans don’t have a slight edge over Democrats in a decaying political system. Republicans are ascendant. Trump has given them a mission. The country is now theirs.
Memo to academic historians: Remember this about being ‎wrong--almost to the point of being delusional--about so much in America: The first step to recovery is recognizing you need help. And trust me, you need a lot of help. 

02 December 2016

Democrats Channel Calhoun & Embrace Nullification

In regards to sanctuary cities . . .

"We have a massive nullification effort going on in this country. Nullification is what the Confederacy did prior to and during the civil war – nullifying decisions by the federal government. We have now the Left taking a tactic from the Confederacy, from pro-slave states, nullifying federal law." ~ Constitutional attorney, Mark Levin


But, of course, you don't hear anything from Civil War bloggers and historians moral reformers about the left now embracing John C. Calhoun, do you? I'm sure all this has nothing to do with politics. LOL.

30 November 2016

Should Flag-Burners Go to Jail?

Maybe you should start by asking the right person . . . 

A certain Civil War blogger is all-a-twitter over President-elect Trump's recent tweet about jailing flag burners. This is yet one more case of someone taking Trump literally, but not seriously. It's also another example of the "moral outrage of the week club." I think most folks who read the tweet understood it for what it was: attention getting hyperbole. But here's a factoid overlooked by the hand-wringers: Defeated Presidential candidate and former Democrat Senator from New York, Hillary Clinton, actually co-sponsored a bill that would, in fact, have jailed flag-burners: The "Flag Protection Act of 2005", which reads, in part:
Any person who destroys or damages a flag of the United States with the primary purpose and intent to incite or produce imminent violence or a breach of the peace, and under circumstances in which the person knows that it is reasonably likely to produce imminent violence or a breach of the peace, shall be fined not more than $100,000, imprisoned not more than 1 year, or both.
Moreover, the New York Times opined that Clinton's bill was an attempt to equate flag-burning with cross-burning, writing:
The bill attempts to equate flag-burning with cross-burning, which the Supreme Court, in a sensible and carefully considered 2003 decision, said could be prosecuted under certain circumstances as a violation of civil rights law. It's a ridiculous comparison.
You would think these folks would be a bit more concerned about the reality of a bill with teeth filed in the U.S. Senate than they would a tweet by a man who is known for his over the top remarks. Then, again . . .πŸ˜‰ Oh my, it's going to be a very fun 4 (maybe 8) years. LOL.

28 November 2016

Relic Hunting Post #146 - Preserved Hotchkiss Shell

A couple of years ago, I and a friend recovered an unexploded Hotchkiss shell from a river in the Southeastern United States. (Yes, we did so legally with permits.) Since that time I've wanted to preserve it but had not found the time to do so. I did finally find some time over the Thanksgiving holiday.

One of the joys of recovering old relics from our Nation's past is the satisfaction one gets in preserving these artifacts for future generations. Below are the results - before and after.

26 November 2016

PC Deniers Are Flat-Earthers: Part 10 - Laugh at Deniers

A couple of "Civil War bloggers" like to poke fun and mock anyone who points out both the silliness and pervasiveness of political correctness. One blogger in particular refers to me as a "Virginia Whiner" over my PC posts. Clever.

But in denying and downplaying PC, these folks only make my case. With that in mind, I came across this recent skit mocking political correctness and Thanksgiving. What's interesting is that the mocking skit is performed by children. That makes it particularly appropriate. PC is childish and intellectually shallow. When even children can see and laugh at your silliness and "outrage of the month" club, I'd say the gig is about up. You've become a laughing stock.

25 November 2016

History Blogging & Politics

History News Network Screen Shot: 11/23/2016

We often hear from the ostensibly apolitical, objective history and Civil War bloggers that "heritage types" and defenders of American Exceptionalism are politicizing history. Funny, I never hear them criticizing their soul mates on the left for the same thing. When most academic historians are pretty much saying the same thing, we should be highly suspicious, especially when they default to nothing more than name calling and smearing those who disagree with their conformist viewpoints. It's times like these that it's a good idea to recall the words of historian Paul Johnson:
Beware committees, conferences and leagues of intellectuals. Distrust public statements from their serried ranks. Discount their verdicts on political leaders and important events. ~ Historian Paul Johnson

24 November 2016

Recent Relic Recoveries - Happy Thanksgiving

Tomorrow I will spend most of the day cleaning, cataloguing, organizing and displaying many of my relic finds from this year. Here's my haul from 2 recent digs here in Virginia. The items in the first photo were dug in and around the Confederate trenches at Petersburg (on private property of course) during an organized hunt. Several minie balls, one piece of iron grape shot, a shell fragment and a poncho grommet. I also dug what I believe to be an ornate part of a camp stove right in the bottom of one of the trenches. It's taking an apple cider vinegar bath right now. I'll post the results later. The 2nd image is from an all day solo hunt last week on a battlefield here in the Shenandoah Valley - again on private property. Lots of .69's, a Confederate Gardner, shell frags and sabot frags as well, along with a period rivet. Not a bad November thus far. Video to come later. Ah, the life of a relic hunter . . . Happy Thanksgiving! God is good to us, isn't He?

22 November 2016

My Latest Article in North South Trader's Civil War

I've been a reader of the award winning North South Trader's Civil War (on and off) for many years now. And I've been a faithful subscriber for about 6 years. It is, in my opinion, the best WBTS magazine being published today. NSTCW's masthead clearly states it's target audience: "The magazine for collectors & historians." Specifically . . .

North South Trader's Civil War is a bimonthly magazine for collectors, researchers, relic hunters, and historians of the War Between the States. Each heavily illustrated issue contains a host of well-researched articles about a wide variety of artifacts, from uniforms and weaponry to belt plates and buttons. We also offer regular features about events in the field, reproduction and fake alerts, artifact identification, and recently excavated finds. Our format is lively, informative, and scholarly yet eminently readable.

If you're a collector or have an interest in the history and the surviving artifacts of the greatest conflict in American history, you won't want to miss an issue of this award-winning publication!
So it goes without saying that I'm thrilled to have an article published in their most recent issue. An added (and unexpected) honor is that my essay is appearing in the magazine's 40th anniversary issue.

My essay was actually adapted from material in my latest book, The Battle of Waynesboro. I received my comp copies of the magazine today. I have much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving.

Most Academic Historians Are Democrats

And most Democrats are left of the political center. Those are facts. With this in mind, a recent study regarding the political affiliation of college and university professors found:
Among the five fields analyzed, History has the highest ratio of Democrat-to-Republican professors at nearly 34 to one. [Source.]
Yes, you read that correctly. 34 to 1. While I believe it is possible that a history professor (Democrat or Republican) can keep his personal political preferences completely out of the classroom, I also believe that it is highly improbable. You can draw your own conclusions about this reality. Others have already done so. And there have been numerous books written on the topic as well. For example.

Of course, this doesn't necessarily mean one cannot learn from someone of either political preference (right or left), but what one does need to keep in mind is that leftist preferences are dominant among academic historians. There is no political diversity (of any consequence) among academic historians. To pretend that this is not something to both consider and be concerned about is bordering on the delusional.

21 November 2016

Hope For Bubble Dwellers

This would apply to academia as well; especially those historians engaged in what Professor Gordon S. Wood describes as "incestuous conversations." All good humor contains an element of truth. With that in mind . . .

And this piece in the New York Post by George Will is certainly germane. Here are some of the money quotes:
Academia should consider how it contributed to, and reflects Americans’ judgments pertinent to, Donald Trump’s election. The compound of childishness and condescension radiating from campuses is a constant reminder to normal Americans of the decay of protected classes — in this case, tenured faculty and cosseted students.
And . . .
An American Council of Trustees and Alumni study — “No US History? How College History Departments Leave the United States out of the Major,” based on requirements and course offerings at 75 leading colleges and universities — found that “the overwhelming majority of America’s most prestigious institutions do not require even the students who major in history to take a single course on United States history or government.”
And . . .
Small wonder, then, that a recent ACTA-commissioned survey found that less than half of college graduates knew that George Washington was the commanding general at Yorktown; that nearly half didn’t know that Theodore Roosevelt was important to the construction of the Panama Canal; that more than one-third couldn’t place the Civil War in a correct 20-year span or identify Franklin Roosevelt as the architect of the New Deal; that 58 percent didn’t know that the Battle of the Bulge occurred in World War II; and that nearly half didn’t know the lengths of the terms of US senators and representatives.
And yet the people teaching at and running these institutions of "higher learning" expect the rest of us to defer to their expertise. LOL. 😏

16 November 2016

The Historic Legacy of the Last Eight Years

Image source, The Washington Post

From the Washington Post:
. . . Republicans grabbed more of America's statehouses and governor's mansions during the Obama administration than at any time in the modern era. And they held onto those majorities Tuesday. Results are still trickling in, but it looks like Republicans will still control an all-time high 69 of 99 state legislative chambers. They'll hold at least 33 governorships, tying a 94-year-old record.

That means that come 2017, they'll have total control of government in at least 25 states, and partial control in 20 states. According to population calculations by the conservative group Americans for Tax Reform, that translates to roughly 80 percent of the population living in a state either all or partially controlled by Republicans.
And  the WAPO reluctantly admits . . .
Like most of our predictions about the 2016 election, we were wrong. Republicans are still the dominant party in America and likely will be for some time. 

15 November 2016

PC Deniers Are Flat-Earthers: Part 9 - Academia's Intolerance

From USA Today:
Donald Trump’s substantial victory, when most progressives expected a Hillary Clinton landslide, came as a shock to many. . . .The response to the shock has been to turn campuses into kindergarten. The University of Michigan Law School announced a ”post-election self-care” event with “food" and "play,” including “coloring sheets, play dough (sic), positive card-making, Legos and bubbles with your fellow law students.” (Embarrassed by the attention, UM Law scrubbed the announcement from its website, perhaps concerned that people would wonder whether its graduates would require Legos and bubbles in the event of stressful litigation.)
And . . .
Trump is leading the state of Michigan, so there are probably quite a few on campus — aren’t really included in acceptable campus culture. It’s not promoting diversity; it’s enforcing uniformity. It’s not promoting inclusion; it’s practicing exclusion.  And though it pretends to be about nurturing, it’s actually about being mean to those who don’t fall in the nurtured class.
Yet we still have the deniers. Amazing. Read the complete piece here, written by a University professor.

14 November 2016

UVA Professors: "Stop Quoting Thomas Jefferson"

Aren't you all glad that pointing out political correctness is academia is just "whining" and a boogie-man of the right?
“We would like for our administration to understand that although some members of this community may have come to this university because of Thomas Jefferson's legacy, others of us came here in spite of it,” the letter read. “For many of us, the inclusion of Jefferson quotations in these e-mails undermines the message of unity, equality and civility that you are attempting to convey.”
Story here

11 November 2016

Historic Election - The Triumph of the Forgotten Little Man

Image source.
Accusations of elitism dogged Clinton throughout her political campaign, and they came to the fore in a big way in September when she said that half of Trump’s supporters belonged in a “basket of deplorables.” The comment, which she made at a star-studded fundraiser in New York City, was immediately slammed by Republicans. It was a sign of “how little she thinks of the hard-working men and women [the Deplorables] of America,” said Trump campaign communications adviser Jason Miller. ~ Yahoo News
This is an unusually long post for me. I hope you'll stick with me to the end. If you're an open-minded Trump hater, what follows may bring understanding. If you're a closed-minded Trump hater, you should probably move along.

I recently read another Civil War related blog suggest that it is going to take a lot of time to understand President-elect Trump's astonishing and historic victory. For those who've not been living in a bubble over the last 16 years (yes, 16 years) and who aren't completely out of touch, the 2016 election is really quite easy to understand.  

Though it's a little bit more complicated than this, you could fundamentally boil Tuesday's election results down to "the triumph of the forgotten little man." President-elect Trump actually referred to this overlooked demographic in his victory speech: "The forgotten men and women of our country will be forgotten no longer."

The term "forgotten man" is certainly not new in regards to politics. FDR used the term in a speech in 1932:
These unhappy times call for the building of plans that rest upon the forgotten, the unorganized but the indispensable units of economic power, for plans like those of 1917 that build from the bottom up and not from the top down, that put their faith once more in the forgotten man at the bottom of the economic pyramid.
And there are a number of writers who have discussed this overlooked American since Trump's astounding victory. Beverly Cage writing in the New York Times for example:
In 1932, at the darkest moment of the Great Depression, Franklin Roosevelt evoked the “forgotten man” as a reason to rebuild the economy from the “bottom up.” More than three decades later, after Richard Nixon’s 1968 victory, the journalist Peter Schrag identified the “Forgotten American” — the white “lower middle class” voter — as the key to the nation’s apparent rejection of the Great Society and the New Deal order. “In the guise of the working class — or the American yeoman or John Smith — he was once the hero of the civic books, the man that Andrew Jackson called ‘the bone and sinew of the country,’ ” Mr. Schrag wrote. “Now he is ‘the forgotten man,’ perhaps the most alienated [and impugned and despised by the cosmopolitan class] person in America.”
To those who have already ignorantly categorized this movement of "the forgotten man" with the same "George Wallace types" of the 1960's and 1970's: you are sorely mistaken and have learned nothing from the last 16 years, nor from this election. This upsetting of the status quo had nothing to do with race. Regarding this point, it's also important to point out that almost 1/3 of Hispanics voting in 2016, voted for President-elect Donald Trump. And these voters did not reject Hillary Clinton because of her sex. If you really believe that, you're locked into your own political bias beyond anyone's ability to help you. (And if you want to celebrate the breaking of a glass ceiling, you may do so. Donald Trump's campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway, just became the first woman to ever successfully run a presidential campaign. Funny no one on the left has celebrated that accomplishment, huh?)   

Many of the Democrat and independent voters who voted for Obama (especially the first time) have seen their situation and their country decline while the empty promises of the last two campaign cycles still echoed in their ears. They've also watched ruling class elites prosper while all they hold dear is slowly slipping away. This drove them straight into President-elect Trump's camp. As a recent article in the New York Post written by Salena Zito points out:
she [Clinton] won the top 10 populations centers where most of the wealth, commerce and power is located — and lost the bulk of America. . . . “Look, elites don’t understand why America needs to be great again because for them America is great,” . . . Their economy is strong, their lifestyle is comfortable and the communities they live in, in and around New York and Washington, are the wealthiest and most influential in the country. ~ Salena  Zito
These same forgotten voters saw a new champion in Trump.

This election was about the direction of the country - both economically and culturally - pure and simple. Globalization has been a sweet deal for Wall Street, bankers, politicians, and other ruling class elites, but it's been at the expense of many middle and lower middle class voters of all races. On election day, they very plainly voiced their concerns and shouted in one, unified voice, STOP!
The elites’ picture of a typical Trump voter is right out of “The Beverly Hillbillies” — male, white, uneducated and lacking common pleasantries, let alone the skills to better themselves. . . . When Trump voters turn on cable TV, they see their lives and livelihoods disrespected. They don’t want to keep up with the Kardashians; they just want to watch football without a political statement thrown in their faces. ~ Salena  Zito
Even CBS News has published a mea culpa written by Will Rahn about how the mainstream media treated President-elect Trump's supporters. Mr. Rhan may not like what's happened regarding Trump's victory but, at least, he does understand it:
The audience for our glib analysis and contempt for much of the electorate, it turned out, was rather limited. This was particularly true when it came to voters, the ones who turned out by the millions to deliver not only a rebuke to the political system but also the people who cover it. Trump knew what he was doing when he invited his crowds to jeer and hiss the reporters covering him. They hate us, and have for some time. And can you blame them? Journalists [and many historians in the blogosphere] love mocking Trump supporters. We insult their appearances. We dismiss them as racists and sexists. We emote on Twitter about how this or that comment or policy makes us feel one way or the other, and yet we reject their feelings as invalid.
What is really interesting to me about this piece is that much of what Rahn writes about the media is just as true about much of academia, particularly all the leftist "historians" who dismissed Trump supporters as ignorant bigots. For example, just substitute my bracketed words for Rahn's in this excerpt:
We diagnose them as racists in the way Dark Age clerics confused medical problems with demonic possession. Journalists [Historians], at our worst, see ourselves as a priestly caste. We believe we not only have access to the indisputable facts, but also a greater truth, a system of beliefs divined from an advanced understanding of justice [history].
Is this not exactly what we see from many "mainstream" historians, especially in the blogosphere? And, as Rahn notes about his colleagues in the media, the same can be said about many historians analyzing Trump's victory:
You’d think that Trump’s victory – the one we all discounted too far in advance – would lead to a certain newfound humility in the political press. But of course that’s not how it works. To us, speaking broadly, our diagnosis was still basically correct. The demons were just stronger than we realized.

This is all a “whitelash,” you see. Trump voters are racist and sexist, so there must be more racists and sexists than we realized. Tuesday night’s outcome was not a logic-driven rejection of a deeply flawed candidate named Clinton; no, it was a primal scream against fairness, equality, and progress. Let the new tantrums commence! That’s the fantasy, the idea that if we mock them enough, call them racist enough, they’ll eventually shut up and get in line. . . .
it all just somehow leads us to more smugness, more meanness, more certainty from the reporters and pundits. Faced with defeat, we retreat further into our bubble, assumptions left unchecked. No, it’s the voters who are wrong.
We are already seeing this doubling-down attitude expressed on many history related blogs and websites. Their blinders remain intact, their condescending attitudes smugly reassure their own false narratives - even after the storm of the 2016 election.

Yet Rahn expresses a humility and wisdom at the end of his piece that is refreshing:
We have to fix this, and the broken reasoning behind it. There’s a fleeting fun to gang-ups and groupthink. But it’s not worth what we are losing in the process. 
But I must confess, I'm not very optimistic about that, particularly regarding the mainstream media and many (if not most) modern historians. The reasons for that lack of optimism have already been written. It will likely get much worse. Bubble-dwellers don't learn from history, they use it.

Why should this rise of the forgotten man be such a surprise, especially in regards to those former Democrat Obama voters in the Jacksonian belt of Appalachia and the old Rust Belt: Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Western Virginia and most of the South? These are Hillary's "deplorables", President Obama's "bitter clingers", and what a number of comments and posts on "Civil War" blogs and academic-type "history" websites have characterized as little more than ignorant racists - just like the elitists in the media routinely do.

Of course, it's not just liberal Democrat politicians who have forsaken these Americans, the Republican establishment has done the same (which is why Trump quite easily dispatched 16 of them to mere footnotes, one by one, during the Republican primaries). As Dr. Steven Allen Jr. pointed out earlier this year:
Angelo Codevilla, professor emeritus of international relations at Boston University, described the situation this way: “America is now ruled by a uniformly educated class of persons that occupies the commanding heights of the bureaucracy, of the judiciary, education, the media, and of large corporations, and that wields political power through the Democratic Party. Its control of access to prestige, power, privilege, and wealth exerts a gravitational pull that has made the Republican Party’s elites into its satellites.”
Allen adds,
. . . the traditional idea that, while some people might have more money than others, they weren’t intrinsically “better” people. But now, members of the elite think they’re smarter, more sophisticated, more tolerant, more moral than those ignorant folks who work with their hands or never received a college degree.
These "ruled" and disaffected voters felt abandoned. I should know. I'm one of them. We're quite sick of our amoral rulers and the pseudo intellectuals in academia looking down their hypocritical noses at the rest of us while they signal their virtue via the irreligious and false doctrine of political correctness. It's gotten very old, very tired, very ridiculous and we know it's all a lie anyway.

Even so, many of us have long recognized President-elect Trump for much of what he is: a brash, offensive show off in a suit with a Yankee accent. But we also quickly recognized him as something more: a brash, offensive show off in a suit with a Yankee accent who was more than willing to courageously challenge political correctness, globalization, America's economic decline and both the Democrat and Republican establishment cabal in Washington. (How ironic that our standard bearer appears to be, at first glance, much of what we despise. God does have a sense of humor.)

But Donald Trump did not create the issues nor the movement that propelled him to the Presidency. He simply recognized it and got out in front of it to become it's political voice - something ANY Republican (or Democrat for that matter) could have done if they'd had the guts and wisdom to do so. But they didn't. They were too timid, too cowardly, too out of touch, too counseled by their consultants, too blinded by ambition and too lazy. President-elect Trump simply filled the vacuum they had created. If the political establishment in both parties and the rest of the elite in academia and the media want to understand how and why President-elect Trump triumphed, all they need to do is look in the mirror. Your answer is staring back at you. Your arrogance created him. Poetic justice.

Winners in the 2016 election:

American Exceptionalism

The Forgotten Man (and woman) 

Losers in the 2016 election:

Political correctness

Ruling Class Elites (including much of academia)


For more understanding in to what this election means, I recommend the additional commentary to all bubble-dwellers. It really isn't difficult to understand.
Trump Victory is a win for the little guy over the elite (New York Post)

Pollsters suffer huge embarrassment (The Hill)

Absorbing the Impossible (The New York Times)

An Obama Era crashes as Donald Trump takes White House (USA Today)

Fed up with Washington, Trump's 'deplorables' shake up the elite (Reuters)

The Forgotten Man (Lew Rockwell)

And one more thing . . . who's laughing now?