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Taking Stock of Trumpism: Where It Came From, What It Has Accomplished, and Where It Is Going

May 30, 2021
Good evening, I'm Matthew Spaulding, Associate Vice President, Dean of Educational Programs at Hillsdale College here in Washington DC. Welcome to the Allen P Kirby Center for Constitutional Studies and Citizenship at Hillsdale East, as we like to call it, and I'm very happy tonight. Welcome, a good friend of mine and the university, our students are gone for the semester, although I am currently grading their exams and the summer students have not arrived yet, so you will have to make do with my presentation, Victor, I am especially pleased. Having it here for two reasons: one is as a university, we have continued to proudly teach things like the classics and our speaker tonight is a great classics scholar, someone whose books I hope all of us.
taking stock of trumpism where it came from what it has accomplished and where it is going
I've enjoyed it, but you'll also hear it here in a moment. We share some common roots in terms of

where

we grew up. Victor Davis Hansen is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and professor emeritus of classics in California. fresno state university is also very happy that we have to say that wayne and marcia busk are distinguished members of history at hillsdale college received his bachelor's degree in classics at the university of california santa cruz was a member of the american school of classics studies in athens and received his doctorate in classics from Stanford University is from California, in fact, he was the fifth successful generation to live in the same house on his family's farm in Selma, California, which is located in the central valley of California, which is about 45 40 minutes north of

where

I grew up.
taking stock of trumpism where it came from what it has accomplished and where it is going

More Interesting Facts About,

taking stock of trumpism where it came from what it has accomplished and where it is going...

I lived in a small town called Corcoran and that fact goes a long way to explaining his understanding and way of thinking about many things as we will see he was a full time orchard and vineyard grower right after getting his PhD so I'm glad to see which he put to good use before heading to the csu fresno campus to start its classical language program. In 2000 he received the national medal for humanities. In 2008 he won the Bradley Award. He is a weekly columnist for National Review Online. As well as tribune media services, he has published several magazines, newspapers, magazines, in reality he is one of those people who I often despise with contempt and jealousy.
taking stock of trumpism where it came from what it has accomplished and where it is going
He has written 23 books, including the wars of the ancient Greeks in a war like no other, however, how the Athenians and Spartans. fought in the Peloponnesian War his most recent work will be published in October world war ii how the first global conflict was fought and won as the distinguished history follower at hillsdale regularly teaches our students on campus about military history and classical culture as well teaches in our online courses if you are interested, all free at hillsdale.edu and participated in our course on athens and sparta that

came

out last spring and taught sessions on life in government in athens athens and the persian war and athens in the Peloponnesian War He is recently writing about the current elections What has happened in the United States Donald Trump and Trumpism Foreign policy challenges immigration issues His talk this afternoon is titled Taking

stock

of Trumpism Where comes from

what

has been achieved and where it's

going

please join me In welcoming our guest tonight, Victor Davis Hanson, there are only five thousand classes in the United States, so it's a very small group.
taking stock of trumpism where it came from what it has accomplished and where it is going
I mentioned it because yesterday I received a letter from a very angry classicist and he said that you have become the Enoch Powell of classics. and you have done yourself no good, you wrote that good article on the use of numbers in the seventh book of Thucydides since then, everything has gone downhill and you will regret it on your deathbed, that is the cloud that remembers

what

Churchill said . about classicism they know little Latin and even less Greek and yet they are supposed to be experts in it, but I have had a difficult relationship in the world of classical languages.
I thought I'd talk for about 30 minutes about the phenomenon of Trumpism, where he

came

from how he got elected, what he's trying to do and what the future holds, all of you have encountered that phenomenon or maybe participated in when you had to look at both sides when someone asked them if they voted for Trump or they always said this phrase this is my favorite well it wasn't my first choice or after the primaries I don't agree with everything he does but you hear that a lot it's always the same well hillary clinton the other day gave an interview and/or actually She gave a speech before an international group of women when she said that the elections were stolen from her.
She's like your typical Hillary. I take full responsibility, but I was robbed because of course I'm a woman and of course James Comey stole the election. Do you believe that? They would be angry that he was still there instead of angry that they fired him yesterday, but nevertheless and then of course the Russians did it like I told a group today. The Russians made it as if Gurim went to Hitler. in August 1941 and said, well, we could have taken Moscow, but it was very cold and Milthuen said it's not like we're a tropical town in the German military manual it said how to prepare for snow, but they were blaming everything on the snow. like the red army didn't play a role in his defeat outside moscow that's what hillary i mean that's what the russians are trying to interfere with the election they didn't put a gun to his head and say you know, have a beer homemade server or you know, sell a quarter, approve the sale of a quarter of North America's uranium holdings, but she's still angry and what made her lose, of course, that election and Trump's power was that she was strident and sarcastic, she was not a good candidate and she was Isn't she when she told the truth?
It was less believable than when Trump told a lie and she was a year younger than Trump and physically 10 years older than Trump and Trump violated all the rules of personal fitness. He seemed too heavy. I had a friend who knew him and I told him what he was like and he said he could choose between McDonald's Big Mac and Burger King and then he said for dessert there was Haagen-Dazs in the cup, so Hillary ate well and did it. everything was fine and that she was less healthy than someone who was older and had that cunning and animal energy, so she was not a strong candidate, she had no message other than that I am a woman and I am not Donald Trump, the monster and then the The only key to her election is that she was

going

to win only one way.
We all knew it. We all knew that Barack Obama had signed a suicide pact. I should say that's a wrong metaphor. He had signed a suicide pact with the Democratic party because he basically said that I'm going to win. follow Reverend Wright's lead on identity politics by organizing the community once I'm elected and I'm going to empower identity politics minority groups to come out in unprecedented numbers and vote en masse at levels you can't imagine the 92 percent and well, while the Klinger vote or what we now know are the irredeemable and deplorables will fall, I will appeal to the other groups so much that it won't matter and of course it was true but the problem was that it wasn't transferable to no one more than Barack Obama, so Hillary inherited all the negative signs and none of the positive ones and when Obama finished with that carnage he had ruined the Democratic party and they had lost local elections, governorships, state legislature, senate, but generation. of the supreme court probably and the presidency and yet she doubled down and called a quarter of the united states, you know, basically irredeemable when she said half of her supporters were such and you thought if she was smart she would repeat the role of Annie Oakley. quite effective in 2008, remember she said she shot guns with her father, that she had boilers, that boiled in bold, but then you start to realize that in 2016 it was a different party, Obama had destroyed that Bill Clinton party, that Wow, good boy!
It would be gone and she would inherit a paradigm that would only work for Obama and I think I wrote an article saying, "You know where this is going to go," she's going to lead to very lucrative conferences for Obama as a reward for destroying hers. he will be loved and she will be hated for trying to imitate someone who loses, something she has to be losing and that is exactly why she lost the election and then of course the other reason was that we all thought that Donald Trump had voice and vote. In it we all thought that the February march Donald Trump was the only candidate who could lose to Hillary Clinton remember that and everyone said well many of them knew that Rubio is the ideal candidate or Walker is so we had good governors Jindal Christie Walker we had Senators Rand Paul and Jeb Bush, he had the dynasty, the money, the name, we had outsiders who were more versed in facts like Fiorina and Ben Carson, no one thought Trump had these particular gifts, but now looking back I think which most of you agree that he might have been the only candidate who could have won because unlike john mccain, he wasn't going to take out reverend wright that guy, i'm not going to mention reverend wright and, Unlike Mitt Romney, he was not going to apologize for his position on The Life You Can Imagine if Trump had run in 2008, Reverend Wright would have had 24/7 all the time and if it had been Mitt Romney in 2012 , when Candy Crawley hijacked the microphone, she would have jumped up and grabbed the microphone, so at least she was the first person. who in Lee Out Water stuff reminds us of Lee Outwater, gave us the Boston Harbor ads, er, Tank and Willie Horton, and turned a patrician, aristocratic, sarcastic George H.W Bush into someone who, you know, ate nuts corn and it was one of us and it was very effective and then.
He died, Bush lost, we hadn't seen that kind of guerrilla fighting until Trump came along, so no matter what, for once in all he was going to take on Hillary in a very petty but necessary way, and that's why he would resonate in a way she couldn't imagine and she also understood a couple of things we've all been told that demographics are destiny, but does the electoral college really care who wins a popular vote if certain states are more important than Others a vote in Iowa is worth a lot more in Ohio or Wisconsin a lot more than my vote in California at least nationally and Trump seemed to remember watching CNN when someone said I think they were talking about Jorge Ramos you see. he seems unaware of the ramifications of the Latino vote.
I said yes, because the majority of the Latino vote and I'm going to a place where 90 percent of Mexican-Americans were going to go to two California states that would never turn red. and texas was never going to turn blue and the states that had probably turned maybe colorado and new mexico were going to change no matter who now if he had argued that there are half a million latinos who hate trump in ohio and michigan and wisconsin he would have heard, but what I mean is that he looked at the electoral college and understood that demographics are destiny as it applies to particular states and not the popular vote and then when a final element is added to the election in which Trump He campaigned as if he was going to lose and he was desperate and Hillary campaigned as if she had already won, it was a classic tortoiseshell and that's why she was depressed in places like Georgia and Arizona that were never going to go. red at least in our generation thinking I'm going to get a term without visiting wisconsin once and he had a certain touch, they turned it into a strategic mistake the Clintons made by thinking he's a billionaire therefore he can't be a populist. you can be a populist and a billionaire and you can be broke and be elitist and she has shown that very well, she and her husband, just like the Obamas, and when he had that queen accent and surrounded himself with people like mike tyson people from the world wrestling federation people in these key electoral states I have someone like Donald Trump in my family and I bring him out from time to time I like him but I don't want them to see me but they understood who it was and that queen's accent worked in its favor and I am being very cynical.
I don't want to be sarcastic because I once talked to a developer in New York and he called me and said, "You know, I watch it from my tower." a big skyscraper I shouldn't say skyscraper I guess it's a skyscraper and he said I see Donald Trump and it's true that he deviates from his planned walk when he leaves his lim and goes and talks to cement People and I see people applauding that they are in places of construction, so whatever it is, it's genuine that people like him and I thought about that when Hillary was telling coal miners that they had to learn how to build solar panels, she was using the first person plural pronoun .
When did you realize? I've never heard a candidate in history say our miners, our farmers, our soldiers, no one told him to do that and then when you added Kelly Conway and Steve Bannon to the mix, these are people who seem to have existed. the block and robbie mook and all these guys who to clinton seemed like they came out of the Dupont circle on the Upper West Side, so it was kind of metrosexual against the guys who had been around a long time and who he had known and been very close to. over the years, I havefound infrequently but occasionally Steve Bannon, so as I was telling my wife she asked who that guy is and said you can't always get what you want.
I started playing at a right-wing Trump rally. and I said it's steve bannon, so there were elements that explain why he won trump. I want to add, if I could take a little bit of a tour, there was also a deep-rooted emotional anger in America that you can't really articulate well because it's a We feel an emotional instinct and I guess you could sum it up where there are a lot of people in the United States, the elite In the two coastal strips, you know, they say they're irredeemable or deplorable or we say they're not knowledge-based or they're post-industrial, whatever it is, they're not into it, they're not, but they're very angry at people who don't. it does.
They don't live by the ramifications of their own ideology and by that I mean, if I'm in California and they tell me we have to have high speed rail, it will be built where I live near Hanford and not in Palo Alto where it should start if I They say we have to pay the highest electricity rates in the country. It won't be in Palo Alto where the temperature. I have an office at Stanford. I never turned on the heating or cooling. If I go on August 15 when it is 107 in Fresno, Walmart is full of Hispanics who are there for the air conditioning, they sit there all day as if their children were a playground and people do listen to a conference from colleagues in Stanford and Tell me open borders are a great thing.
I know they put their kids in Castellia or Hark or Menlo school. They don't put them in the Selma public schools and there was an angry feeling when I woke up in the morning. Don't get a letter saying Mr. Hansen your Tribute Media Services column was outsourced to someone in South Korea. He can do it for half the price. It just doesn't occur to me. That happens to a lot of people and that was a summary. this Clinton couple who talked one way and lived another progressive progressive progressive and then they had a crime basically a crime syndicate and they had tastes and appetites that were completely hypocritical and you couldn't square the circle of what they said and how they lived and It was evident to the people that the democratic party had become a party of the elite and a party of the poor and not only had dissidence or interests in the middle, but a real contempt for them and that was fatal for them in these state.
I would say that you can see that the Obamas are very similar to the Clintons, so I don't think that Obama is the avatar of a movement, think about it, take those four people, Bill, Hillary, Michelle and Barack, they are the only couples post-presidential dating back to our era to Washington Carter no Reagan no bushes no mansions they both organized political action groups both with a wink and a nod said my wife may still be around? someday politically active, so you should make a donation to check out the library, check out the foundation, check out the 400,000 speaking engagements.
Both saw marriage perhaps not as an act of love but rather as a business proposition. They were both complaining about how life hadn't treated them. Well, since they deserve more money or more influence or power and people looked at Clinton, I think Obama, that was a really bad image for the Democratic Party, these people can put up with a lot of things, but they don't like being treated like idiots and the idea of that these are people in the trenches or they're good old boys or they're hard-working progressives or they didn't build that it's not time to make profits or that at some point you need enough money and then go make four hundred thousand dollars just doesn't work, so I think it's something to think about in terms of Trump himself, getting elected and how we're going to characterize the first hundred days.
Part of the problem with the media hysteria is again if I have lost the legislatures, the local offices, the governorship, the Senate, then you have no political power and that is why there is anger about it and that is that if you are the party of the very rich, of the suburbs and the educated, which is now the democratic party is: if you look at the per capita income of the blue counties overwhelmingly, these are democratic, then you are angry because stupider people, less talkative, less educated people, are dictating decisions that you think affect your lives and you don't know how to make them. respond because politically there is no way out of it and one of the ironies is that the media is now the other side, so if the media starts using the f-word or the f-word or whatever, then the politicians do the same, not to the setback if the media accumulates. black lives matter or transgender hollywood celebrities create an lgbt movement or global warming emerges from culture then the democrat party reacts to it so this trump hysteria is in the democratic as reactive chuck schumer reacts to it Trump after what he reads in the media about trump and they don't really have a political base because dianne feinstein is 83, nancy pelosi is 79, steny hoyer is 77. jerry brown is 80, bernie sanders is 76 and people who are young are scarier I mean keith ellison and perez so no I don't have a second team coming regardless of what you think about the Republicans they have young people like Paul Ryan and in the house and they have young governors Marco Rubio so there is frustration because politically they don't know what.
What to do and they are angry with this guy who does not fit their image as president, does not speak well, does not have the education that they believe and their way of thinking, if you and I have tried this. conversation that maybe some of you are having with people on the left who hate Trump, I said you think it's easy to make money in Manhattan real estate, corrupt unions, corrupt politicians, corrupt community organizing groups, fast environmentalists and they're going to build a skyscraper in In midtown Manhattan you have to be a genius to survive, they don't see that so they underestimated him in the campaign and now as president they are underestimating them so what is he trying to do basically if you look at the agenda?
In fact, it's an agenda from 1995 to 2005 that says the proposed tax reforms are more like George Bush's reduction from 39 to 35 than Ronald Reagan's reduction to 28. If you look at the Keystone and Dakota pipelines, They were already approved, it was a fairly general decision. Hillary was all for Keystone until the election. If you look at immigration, Trump didn't come up with the idea of ​​the wall that House Republicans had voted for. The entire Senate approved it. A third had been built. Listen sometimes to Bill Clinton in one of his 1994 speeches about illegal immigration, they are very to the right of Donald Trump says that and so is Harry Reids.
The point I'm making is that Trump returned to the medium, but the medium would no longer exist as we knew it. so it was considered radical and revolutionary because they were convinced that this trajectory, whether it was single payer or permanent identity policy or whatever, or leadership from behind foreign policy, was set in stone and trying to bring everyone back It was difficult, the other thing that I think scared them is that they were afraid of that and we are starting to see it in the first hundred days of Trump, is that he is not as stupid as we think, that there is a political paradigm behind many of his economic policies and I think that sums it up. you know, two words, three percent, joe biden said it was three, but maybe four, three percent growth if you get three percent growth because of the simplification of the tax code, the reduction of corporate taxes , uh, deregulation in some key industry, especially the epa, getting interest rates maybe up to one. or two or three percent more than they are now and he can achieve three percent growth that Obama never achieved, we haven't had in 10 years, so Trump's idea is that whatever differences they have between each other regarding their religion, race or skin color. color or ethnicity or any animosity you have toward me is going to disappear and as someone who lived in the Reagan era I can tell you that people hated Ronald Reagan and he was very unpopular in '81 and '82.
I remember there was a congressman named Reagan. and his last name was Vine and he ran for office on Reagan Vineyard and someone fell, I think it was in Southern California, found this obscure failed candidate and ran his campaign and printed thousands of copies and everywhere we were because we had an agricultural collapse when paul volcker broke inflation prices just plummeted and everyone had this sign on their thompson seedless raisin reagan vineyard we had a reagan vineyard reagan vineyard and everyone said this guy can't win and then you turn on the tv and was The day after nuclear winter, I think Carl Sagan told us about the deployment of Pershing missiles in Germany.
He was going to start a nuclear war. He was bombing the invasion of Grenada. It was just that he was Trumpian and suddenly Walter Mondale was out of central casting. tall and handsome liberal, but not a crazy liberal like mcgovern and he was going to win and suddenly, I think the dates are approximately between 1983, let's say, November to October 1984, the economy grew at a dizzying 7.1 and of It suddenly didn't matter that Reagan could have done it. The world exploded and people would have said at least I died rich, so people changed and it was miraculous for me to see all these farmers who hated it and suddenly said they had a guy that I can remember.
This took pruning chairs and cut out the sign for the vineyard and his barn and took it out and said Reagan with this jagged edge at the bottom, so it was no longer Reagan Vineyard, but Reagan and that's what I think has influenced Trump. he feels like as a business person money talks and if we're prosperous and these and so on like this, even if they tell you he's a protectionist or he's a mercantilist or he's fried before Milton, whatever it is if you look at His team current economic situation is more or less their idea is to grow the economy and I think that explains a lot of what they are doing, as well as bringing people back to the center of cultural issues abroad.
It's pretty simple if we were to take a world poll on January 20th I think we would all say that North Korea that Obama bequeathed is not a stable situation, they had been testing, they had been threatening to blow up people and they had been doing it based on the idea that they were crazy. and having one or two nuclear weapons was a good way to extort money and it would continue if you looked at Iran we were starting to discover that there was a side agreement on inspections there was a side agreement on hostages cash for all the hostages that we didn't know about that there was a side agreement for the development of ballistic missiles and again the premise was that Obama would or could not do something about it and that the United States was a power at stake.
If we looked at Russia, we weren't just talking about Crimea or Ukraine. talking about the next acquisition in the baltic states we had agreed that reset had failed dismantling the anti-ballistic missile project in eastern europe or mocking mitt romney to assure putin that you would be more flexible about after the elections all those things had failed and Russia was bowled. China had built these bases on the Spratly Islands. I was on the move. Everything reminded me again. I don't want to go overboard with these images, but remember that Jimmy Carter is gone. No soldier will die under my command.
I do not have an excessive fear of communism like my opponent and human rights will decide my foreign policy positions. He remembers all that and then I remember he sold. He became very loved. He wanted to sell F-15s to Saudi Arabia and the commitments he would get to sell them. but they didn't have bomb racks, so we sold them these things where they had to, you know, improvise bomb placements and then we found out that after three years this therapeutic insight into human nature ended. up with china invading vietnam communist uprisings in central america the russians in afghanistan a revolution iran the shah gan and radical shiite islam and then reagan came in and remember he didn't really say anything there won't be any hostages when he's there What does that mean?
And that point is that he was unpredictable and would restore deterrence and then when he sent missiles to Germany, he put the mayor or Libya or Grenada, as I said before, the loss of deterrence is very dangerous and is only compared to the effort to recapture it so what trump is trying to do i think through mattis and mcmaster and that team is not neocon nation building obviously it's not isolationism it's not even just realism it's some kind of strategic deterrence or realistic deterrence and what they are saying is that the world is an unstable and dangerous place because people have come to incorrect assumptions about the power of the United States and that is a very dangerous time in world history when that happens;
In other words, by any empirical standard, the US military has been reduced as much as it has been under Obama, when we are down almost three percent of GDP investment if you look at our strength.of aircraft carriers, our strategic assets, our nuclear assets, our battle-hardened troops from fighting in places like Afghanistan, there is no army that even comes close to that, there are no two armies together that come close to that, but deterrence is also a state of mind, but if you believe that that army will never be used or that it will be used in a predictable way, then you earn the additional wages of contempt, as Hitler said.
There is no greater disdain for a superior military power than you can ignore. and people kept telling hitler don't go to starland don't screw up sarlan's elections don't go to rhineland the french army could crush us and don't go to poland because you know that great britain and france together have a bigger army they have better tanks the shar b tank it's far superior to marking one two or three the new spitfire has the same features as the mbf 109 don't do this and he said i saw chamberlain in munich i wanted to step on him i wanted to stomp on his stomach and take that stupid umbrella and hit him in the head with him and he called his worms people who had been magnanimous were called worms and so we lost deterrence and so What are wars, wars or a laboratory experiment to prove who was really strong in the first place?
Because once you have misperceptions, reality is usually the control, like I said today, if you're in high school, I went to a very tough high school, I remember that. a guy named armando quintana and he always came like this, i'm going to look for you later and he did this and he was very, he was about 5-1 and there's a guy named geronimo rodriguez who was 6-3 he was from mexico illegally and they listened to everyone five speeches until they learned english and jerome was the nicest guy in the world he just said like that and then he went up and hit him and i'm going to take you out and one day geronimo just crushed him i mean he hit him five feet he didn't say a word, He just hit him, broke his jaw, there was a big commotion those days when they closed the school, everyone couldn't believe it and I thought, wow, that's weird and I think what Geronimo was trying to do. what he needed to do is restore deterrence, but he had to do it in a very violent way that was totally unnecessary if he had said Mr.
Quintana that he would not do that again or he had simply tapped him once he had established the rules when Dean Atchison said that South Korea is not within our scope of capable defensive assistance the North invaded just three months later when April Gillespie said we do not intervene with the border speech between Kuwait and Iraq and then Saddam invaded and we forget that that makes gestures declarations guarantees to unpredictable aggressors that will not react are very, very dangerous. A member of my family told me that when Trump is elected you will be so afraid the world will explode.
I told him no. It will be the first time I will rest in peace because I have been terrified for the last eight years that some weaker power would do something stupid under the premise that the United States would not retaliate and then we would enter a war that would finally prove, after many deaths and a lot of violence, that the United States is really stronger. that Iran, I mean, a group of aircraft carriers has more conventional and nuclear power, of course, nuclear, but that the entire Iranian military, it would be stupid for Iran to hijack a ship or humiliate its crew or send a missile near an aircraft carrier and that's what they did.
They were doing it because they felt they were dismissive of a stronger military power that would never use it and then Trump comes in and one of the things about restoring deterrence is that he is able or thinks or tries to project that image of saying anything to anyone. any day and doing whatever I was seeing this strange media reaction to Comey's firing, one of my Hoover colleagues wrote today well this is terrible, he fired Comey and that's going to upset everyone overseas and I thought No, it won't be like Reagan. fire the plane controllers when Gorbachev said don't screw this guy, he's capable of anything, so I don't think people understand why they don't live outside that coastal bubble, but the world operates according to a tragic vision of Human nature. that this therapeutic view and the therapeutic view is very dangerous and the first Lord Halifax, I think it was in 1785, the great British common law jurist said that when people tried to oppose the death penalty for anything else that they were not capital crimes, he said: well, you know?
We hang horse thieves, not because he, the guy, stole a horse, because we don't want horses stolen from us and that's what deterrence is. We don't like making a crazy mohab bomb or bombing an airline, but that's not the purpose. to remind people with underground capabilities that they shouldn't do that because we're capable of doing something like not announcing it and Trump would probably say that if I have an FBI director it would be helpful for him to know that I can wake one up. tomorrow and fire him because that creates a deterrent attitude and you don't have that complacency or even arrogance in the arrogance that James Comey has because he understood that no one would question that, so I think a lot of the misinterpretations of what Trump is doing abroad are can be summarized as it is very dangerous to try to restore deterrence and I don't know if it is a well thought out Trump doctrine, but I do so as someone who was a colleague of Jim Mattis at Hoover and knows McMasters a little.
I think they are trying to tell Trump that we have to find symbolic iconic moments that don't lead to a broader war and then we have to draw a line on an actual line, not verbally but in reality and after some of these incidents in the that we are going to get a lot of pressure and that they are going to be very dangerous we will restore deterrence and then the world as we knew it in the postwar order will return and this is preferable to the alternative if you wonder what Trump would say he would probably say something if you asked him no I believe in nation building I don't believe we can change the nature of man the world abroad is always going to have bullies it's like your grass is always working to grow and the idea that you are going to wave a wand in the grass will be perfect you will have than to buy artificial grass in Fantasyland because you have to mow the grass and there will always be a Saddam Hussein, there will always be a Noriega there will always be a Milosevic there will always be an Omar and the degree to which they can harm innocent people depends on how well they are deterred and we have to restore deterrence and this is the way to do it where Does all this lead to a conclusion regarding the 2020 elections?
Well, Donald Trump has some inconsistencies in that he ran on certain principles that made these proverbial Reagan Democrats or the white working class or the forgotten Americans or the inner Americans or the reds the blue wall Americans I went out and voted in a way that they didn't do it before. I was a teacher at Hillsdale this year and had taught there in the 2004 elections 12 and uh 16. I had never seen signs like I saw before when I returned to California, Hoover colleagues. He told me, well, my last poll, he's a pollster, he said Trump is going to lose by 11.
And I said, I think he's going to win Michigan, and they said, well, that's because you rely on anecdotes, you watch television and I have analysis, I said. no it's because I was riding my bike for almost 25 days and I saw signs everywhere and at one point I saw a person spray painting his garage and I thought he was a vandal so I got off my bike and ran and said you said you just spray painted make america great who are you? do you know the owner of this? He said I'm the owner He said this is the only time I'm going to vote I'm not voting anymore I'm going to vote for this The guy and everyone who sees here is going to vote for this guy and I thought, wow, if only that could be replicated in everyone. the blue wall states, he could win and then when we got home, I told my wife, who teaches at the university, I think.
He can win, she said, well, you know, he's very funny, I have a mostly Hispanic class. I was making a joke and I said, I guess none of that, no one will vote for Trump and the girl in front said, why don't you vote 26 for? 23 Trump had 23 votes from all Hispanic students in the interior of California. These things started to appear. I know it happened to you all the time too and you told us it was impossible. So Trump appealed to working class people that he was sick and tired of this elite or the media, whatever we call elite and that base is the only thing that matters to him.
We now know that conservative pundits who do what I do have no influence if George Will writes a column. I like him a lot and I respect him. him, but if he writes a column saying that Trump is the satanic figure of our time, no one in Bakersfield is going to change his vote, it just won't happen if Mike is my magazine that I write for the national if they have been published. tire problems say never win, people in Michigan don't get up in the morning, said I just can't vote for him, it's just not going to happen, but what's going to happen is those states have to be motivated. and they voted for him. for four or five topics and you know what they are, one of them was illegal immigration.
Trump was the first candidate to say, "I don't have to do light amnesty, I don't have to do the gang of eight, I don't have to do it." market the law says you can't enter if you're illegal I'm not willing to deport everyone if you're here you don't have a criminal record you've been here for five years you're working maybe it's okay but we have some bad men and that's true we do it and basically said Mexico benefits from remittances, they export to the poor instead of addressing poverty, it's a safety valve for them, race wants to change the demographics of the southwestern United States, the Democratic party wants They don't want Italian Americans that they are assimilated into that paradigm, so it was actually a sophisticated argument that he made: it would be good for Republicans in the long run to try to outdo Democrats on social issues.
Justice for the illegal alien community is not going to work. You'll never be able to outbid a Democrat, but you can say I'm going to build a wall and then you won't be flooded with people who come here with no education or skills. without English and very soon you will be surprised at how quickly you will marry and assimilate and follow patterns from other ethnic groups and if your name is scalia or alito or cuomo we will not know what your politics are lópez rodríguez, it will not matter and that is what was trying to do and he has to stick to that and some of that was iconic that he had to finish some kind of wall or those people would bowl in commerce.
He introduced this idea that we've all talked about about justice. trade is not free trade the republican establishment said I don't know if they said it but I think many of my Hoover colleagues would believe it they would say that accumulating deficits is not bad foreign competition even if it is subsidized on their part it is not sustainable it will weaken to Germany, Japan or China and will make our businesses leaner and meaner and lower prices at Walmart for everyone. It's a big deal and Trump came out and said you say that because you never get fired.
I said it before, I don't get a slip that says dear victor hansen, a person in columbia wrote a much better column in the local paper and they are going to hire him into the tribute media service so they never suffer the consequences of their own ideology and Trump later appealed. I don't think he's thought about whether Milton Friedman's economics or not, but probably in the long run it's not that good for the economy, but he says in the short run there are casualties and we're not going to run. they increase these trade deficits and they are so if they are so good, let's let Germany have them for 10 years, but let Japan have Milton Friedman's, that will be great for them, just try it and see what they say, and if it's so good, why not? them, why don't they do it, why do we do it and I really don't care being a leader of the free world if youngstown ohio is destroyed, that was a very attractive message, so he has to live up to that. and that means that he has to grow the economy and he has to do it, he has to keep unemployment below 5, that is another issue about foreign interventions, he has to be very careful because he did not run as an isolationist but as a Jacksonian pragmatic, we are nationalists.
We pay, we don't whack a mole, they raise their heads, we knock them down, but we don't put boots on the ground and try to change hearts and minds. I think Iraq eventually probably would have worked. It would be like Korea if we hadn't hastily pulled out of 2011. Kind of like Eisenhower ran for re-election 56 and said Truman put those guys on the 38th parallel, not me, I'm bringing them out for a cheap campaign talk. I don't think we have Kia and Samsung today, but that's still not Trump's interest. His trump card is to be punitive and yet Afghanistan is a disaster, if we withdraw there will be a lot of people massacred there and something like South Vietnam circa 1975.
However if you send 5,000 troops and we involve that group more and more of people he promised he wouldn't, will feel deeplydisappointed. The same will happen with some of these trade agreements, such as the Pacific Trade Agreement or NAFTA. He at least has to bring something to the table and although they are very flexible, if they feel that he is the typical politician who promises something and then backtracks and joins Jeb Bush's establishment, he will not be successful in those eight or nine states that He has to win because that margin is very, very small and if he loses 150,000 votes here he will not be re-elected if he does what I suggested, it is not my idea, but if he is faithful to these promises.
For these voters, the Republican Party will win and change if he is re-elected. The Republican Party has already changed it. Now it is a more populist party and it is a more empathetic party, I think, and I like this idea that no one knows who I listen to the most. I like the idea that the writers of the Wall Street Journal National Review or Weekly Standard or Comic are not gospel, that they are people who come online, it is simply a free battle, there is no hierarchy anymore, I think this is much healthier than this geriatric cadre who runs a democratic party or a Hollywood bigot and almost Stalinist, let me finish with the democratic party, you have a choice, right?
You can be empirical and see what if Hillary Clinton had appealed. to the working classes and moderated his rhetoric, he didn't talk about irredeemable things, he didn't sell out to the identity politics movement, he probably wouldn't have lost many of his base and he would have gained some and probably won over three million voters, but by a margin He probably would have gotten close and only one or two states he needed to do and probably would have won, anyone would see that that would be the anecdote, so what you wouldn't want to do is nominate someone like Keith Ellison or Perez Tomper as president of the Democratic National Committee or would not want to continue with this, call it resistance as if these people were French fighters in the maki trying to ambush the Waffen SS, not a good image, it's like in 1968 when the Democratic Party was three tenths of a percentage point from beating a very unpopular, more unpopular than Trump, Richard Nixon, and they were assassinated because George Wallace got 13 percent of the vote, which resulted in the loss of five Southern votes. he tells wallace five to nixon that humphrey would have won and then you add the leftist madness at the chicago convention and they ruined that election and then the anecdote was obviously telling someone like humphrey a muskie or someone who doesn't understand trapped with a group marginal pacifist and make sure wallace doesn't shoot him but make sure he doesn't run in 72 which he did and he got shot and wasn't a successful candidate but try to get him. that working class and what they did they said the 71 voter law gave seven 18 year olds the right to vote this is the kind of new progressive movement we're going to get george mcgovern to win it was the third biggest landslide in the us elections history because they read the law, they doubled down on failure and it took them two elections to realize that no one gets nominated who wins after jfk between jfk and barack obama they were different candidates no one could win unless he had a southern accent nominate a guy how al gore wins a popular vote bill clinton wins president jimmy carter and lbj you nominate someone like mondale or dukakis or kerry they don't win because people didn't trust the democratic party on social issues and they wanted some authentic conservative, they thought with an accent southern, so that was kind of a remedy and Obama brought this new paradigm, it's not, like I said, non-transferable, so they have to make a decision if you don't want to see them elected, so I hope you're very happy about that. stephen colbert and bill meyer are using sea they are using this atrocious language that we see who runs the dnc or they practically can't say a speech without using profanity and hollywood enlist madonna ashley judd all these people are building this image that we saw it at 72 and leads nowhere but to oblivion, so Trump has been given a huge gift in the nature of his opposition, so basically it's whether Trump can please his base and grow the economy by three percent and avoid a major war by restoring deterrence. he is going to win and if the democrat party doesn't he will continue to win if the democrat party goes the mcgovern route thank you very much if you have any questions my name is howard seger mark about 50 years ago nikita khrushchev came to the united nations in a news clip He famously took off his shoe and slammed the table.
One interpretation of that was that Khrushchev wanted to prove that he was crazy enough to possibly use nuclear weapons. Is it possible that Mr. Trump's sometimes irrational tweets have the same kind of effect on our international enemies no, I think it's not only possible, it's almost guaranteed if you read it, it's painful, but you read the art of the deal or the order that comes back or makes an American agree and that you ask for twice what you expect. you get 51 that's a lot you act crazy so you make your opponent nervous we've always known that and henry kissinger wrote that in his book on deterrence that acting unpredictably was an advantage remember in the yom kippur war nixon said now go and Tell the Russians that I'm crazy, I'm a mad bomber and I'm going to put us on alert, stage three, and then you're the sober and judicious voice that has to calm me down and you'll be much more successful.
Nixon said that at work and I think that's what I don't think they want to broadcast that, but when I see McMaster on Sunday night TV or Sunday morning I see Mattis, it's almost like they're telling the world. I don't know what we have to put up with, we are dealing with a guy who wants to get out of NATO, he wants to bomb Pyongyang, he will do anything, but you have to deal with us, help me and then you. It almost feels like they walk into a room with Trump and Trump said, well, how did it go, guys?
The danger of that is that our adversaries are brilliant people and they're trying to say Trump and those guys. They are in that school and this is an apprentice script and do not fall into it, so at some point we have to comply and that is a danger that we will have in restoration, but I think you are absolutely right, yes, thank you for doing this thank you professor thank you very much michael maybach um in the case of North Korea, yes, for many of us, it seems that it is an impossible situation because their troops are very close to Seoul, yes, and so on, even though they send the sixth fleet. etc., at some point, does it become a real problem for him to use influence in the United States?
Well, it's very complicated, but I don't think any situation throughout history is impossible, there is always an answer and North Korea realizes that when is when you act crazy and you have nothing to lose and you have some nuclear weapons, that results in bribes, dango, they get billions of dollars and Iran is following the same script, Pakistan does the same and that when you are Sober and sensible like Israel or France, you get nothing with nuclear weapons, like that that we all understand the game they are playing. The question is: can we find a way to mitigate it without leading to soul loss?
The first thing we have to do is move forward. together with our allies we have to put Japan, Taiwan, Australia and South Korea, the Philippines, all on the same page, so I am not opposed to having the president of the Philippines there, who is already a bit of a bully. I mean, he's not as slow as the president of Iran. we're dealing with, so you have to be on the same page, you can't have South Korea working independently and telling the North that these evil Americans are pressuring us, you can't be doing that and you're doing it now with this new President, the second thing is that we have, as Trump has shown, Trump has been criticized because, like a crazy man, he says that China is manipulating the currency, China is racking up debt, China is cheating on patents and then he quietly says now if it is willing to help us.
Pressure them to cut their coal imports or what, then let's leave all that in Trump's mind. If they help with North Korea, then we will be back where we started economically, not worse, but we are much better off with the North. Korea, so they're trying and that's the only country that can put pressure on them because they have a billion people and I don't think North Korea thinks they're going to do much damage to China, so North China has been playing a dirty game. of having a pitbull on a leash and from time to time they would say where is my leash on my pitbull is missing and they know he goes right into your yard and bites you.
I had a neighbor like that he always said I don't know where my bulls are and always every time I argued they ended up in my garden biting me so that's what North Korea does and we have to say you can't do that anymore and if you you do. If you're going to say we face severe economic ramifications, then we have a final, nasty card and I think Donald Rumsfeld played it once in 2006. We tell China and North Korea that the world is a very dangerous place in your neighborhood. Mexico is not nuclear. Canada is not nuclear, we have two oceans, I know that is a nuclear war, but we give it, we have some preparation time, but you have a nuclear Pakistan, you have a nuclear Pakistan, you have a nuclear Russia, you have a nuclear India, you have American nuclear assets.
You have a new nuclear Iran, right? Do you really want a nuclear Japan, Taiwan, South Korea and Australia around you? Because you're going in that direction because they're going to need deterrence and our customers, nuclear weapons will work like Kia or Toyota, they won. You won't blow up on a launch pad like yours, so you broke your client's agreement that they wouldn't go nuclear and we're going to break ours and they can go nuclear if they want, that's all we have and I hate it. . to say that if you're going to insist on sanctions with North Korea and then people eat grass, you can't be like the Clinton administration, oh my God, they're eating grass, well, they have to eat grass for sanctions to work, I hate doing that.
Say it, but it's better for people to be attacked with nuclear weapons, so we have these limited but necessary but necessary and valuable options. I think they are all being played right now and I hope they work. Thank you and thank you for your speech. I was wondering. You were talking earlier about 2016 and how a lot of Democrats didn't really believe Trump could win at all, and in fact, the media was constantly talking about it. I also noticed they did the same thing in 2012 with Romney and I was very suspicious of that because I never understood why Romney was so deep in the hole that he couldn't win, it's one thing to say he's the underdog and another thing to say he can't win. and they did the same with Trump and me.
I'm wondering if you think it's possible that this is just a strategy they're going to keep trying to use. Well, obviously it is of some use, yes, because then they tell your voters that there is no reason to go out and vote. the san francisco giants in a losing year why would you want out? They're not going to win, why would you want to go see them? not to participate in the losing cause so yeah, I think that was a lot, but they also believed, after eight years of this kind of yuppie identity politics, that this was the trajectory in which the health care law was a prelude to the single-payer system of black lives, was a prelude to gay marriage, transgender bathrooms, and who knows what comes next without gender identification. your life as a driver everything was a logical incremental step towards a progressive paradise and it faded away it was Hegelian it faded away and that's what they believed and they thought the white working class was self-destructive maybe suicidal maybe short lived, we know it and they were doomed , so they were going to make the necessary political adjustments and I think they were going to be 50 years old.
Some people wrote it and miscalculated it horribly because they didn't understand the electoral college, they didn't understand no. Everyone believes that classifying your race is your destiny. There are a growing number of people in my family, for example, who are mixed race, and they don't identify with any race and people want to be American, so identity politics is not necessarily ours. our destiny and they misinterpret many things, but they believe them. They won by three million votes, so they almost won the electoral college. It was about 250,000 brave Americans who said: I've had enough and went out to vote. the first time and they voted against Hillary and you have to give credit to Donald Trump because for someone who did not hold any political office it is the most unique phenomenon in American electoral history, someone with no political experience, the first president who also did not hold any political office nor military. a rank won the presidency and before Bannon and before Conway and before all his strategists came along, he put together that strategy, you can say he just made it up, but he put together a strategy that none of his talented contenders and Republican opponents I realized it was pretty brilliant what he did.
He was telling a group today. I keep saying because I have spoken to a group. I don't want to repeat myself if you're in the audience, but I have a wife who is um. I would say halfwayI walked and she told me you have to come here this man is I'm going to vote for Donald Trump I told him why and he said come and look and what she was referring to was Jorge Ramos of Univision who is a billionaire who fled to the safety of the states united took advantage of great lives in a gated community british children in private schools daughters who work for hillary clinton and says trump is racist in our country was racist for voting for him tried to ruin that The press conference was interrupted several times and then Trump said Donald Trump deported Jorge Ramos from Espresso and said: get out of here.
Nobody has done that to that guy. Don't you know that's what they're going to do to you? he doesn't care and she says no, he doesn't care, I'm going to vote for him and I think a lot of people had that viscerality, I don't know if that's a paradigm of governance, but it sure electrified people when he did that or he pointed and said, look at those media people, they're all liars and I thought and you know, I thought well, tomorrow I'm going to read this opera with a frown and wrinkled brow that this is a threat to our republic, but you know. when glenn Thrush writes to John Podesta and says I'm a hack, we want to review my article or Daniel Milbank says I'm going to attack Trump tomorrow, can you give me some free research?
That's what they are, that's what they are or the New York Times says you can't be disinterested anymore because Trump is unique and therefore you have to be beyond the sword, so it's crude, yes, but it always comes to the essence. I have no idea if it's sustainable or not, okay, so I've been watching the media reaction with a certain amount of attention. It amuses me because I have to tell you it's like dinner and a show every night and I have a little out of curiosity because there are many people like me. I just stopped watching the news.
I get my news in other ways. I get my news through online blogs. I find other things I find other ways to do it Where do you see this going? I mean, do you think I believe what you mean? I wrote an article once called The Monastery of the Mind where we have all retreated to mental monasteries. and I mentioned this before I used to watch espn I like sports but I don't like a sportsman lecturing me I'm out of politics I was ignorant so I just tuned it all out and then I realized there must have been a lot of us because Espn is almost bankrupt and then I realized that about three years ago I went to see a movie.
I did not know what it was. I was buying. I just thought, "Well, it's going to be a person or a diversity person." attack an evil corporation or there will be evil people with South African or Southern accents and indeed it was or it will be a remake of a great movie and it will be a terrible remake so that they don't have, I mean I just saw a great movie, these magnificent seven and I went to see the remake and it was diverse, it was horrible, so I thought: I'm not going to go to the movies anymore and I stopped doing it and I realized that everyone stopped doing it. and I don't mean everyone, but half of the population, I think that's what's happening, that people are disconnecting psychologically.
There was a word in classical Greek called safrasune and it meant not just prudence, but prudence in the sense that you no longer wanted to participate in the realm of a radical Athenian democracy and a guy wrote a book called The Quiet Athenian is about people who just tuned out. from Athens because they thought they had nothing to offer and were not appreciated and in California I see them everywhere as one person. I was just told that I don't mind paying 13 and still getting the 46th and 49th ranked schools and roads, but I don't like it when they call me greedy, greedy and selfish for paying 13, so I think a lot of us We have disconnected. from the media and we are looking for alternative media or news and I think it is healthier again.
I think this chaos is wonderful and I am a quitter like you from many things. I don't watch the Super Bowl anymore if there is a concert on TV 18 and it's Madonna any popular entertainment I turn it off I went I think I found out about this I went to a gas station in Pacheco Pass when I was returning from home in Stanford and a rapper stopped me side and he had this typical rap, kill the pig, shoot the pig real hard and I was listening, I thought I'm not going to accept this, I'm 63 years old, so I had two songs, I had a truck and it took me a while, so that I had That famous folk song, I don't think I know who wrote it, but it was called Colorado Trail, it's a cowboy song and I played it as loud as I could and then I went to the next channel which was Joan Baez, The Pleasures of Love. a famous frank French note and I played it as loud as a boy and then the boy came up to me and said, "wow, that's really good music," so I said, well, you know, we've all been listening to your stuff and we never You listen to ours. things and you never know what you're going to expect, but I don't think we'll have to put up with it anymore.
We no longer have monasteries, but we have them in mind. I go to a Walmart where everyone is basically from Mexico. They are wonderful people, most of them are illegal, but I see things there that you will never believe. Five or six EBT cards. This is all going to sound liberal. I shouldn't say it on tape, but I was there. Yesterday there was an Asian person that was there and he was looking at everyone speaking in Spanish and he was very polite and he said to me Dr. Livingston, I guess and I thought, what does that mean?
It was Asian and what he was saying. It's that I'm Asian, you're white, there are Mexican-American people like us, but we don't have to accept the fact that they all come to the United States and have EBT cards and don't learn the language and are rude and strict and just. Because it's a diversity issue, we're not supposed to say anything. This person was a third-generation Japanese, so I think people are saying, "You know, I don't have to apologize." What drove Trump was the complete absence of blame. I don't apologize for being rich, I don't apologize for being rude, a very prominent editor called me and told me that Trump is going to retire and get into Hollywood because they published it today and we have to get on board.
I told him he won't retire. He was rude, he shouldn't have done it, but he won't, he's not the type to apologize, maybe sometimes he should, but I think it was a shout out and he said, we're not going to apologize anymore, we have nothing to apologize for and the deterrence is a funny thing where I live, I have many, most of my friends are Mexican-American and we have diners along our avenue and they all have Mexican flags two weeks after the election, I am the American flag, the California flag , in everyone I go. to the walmart parking lot my car was hit by people who don't have a license she came from mexico very hardworking but they hit the car and left a woman hit my bumper ready to leave I look at her, she rolls down the window and says please don't tell donald trump I don't want to go back to Mexico I'm serious so the left would say that's a sign of the climate of fear and anxiety in the lives that is ruining a skeptic would say that he created deterrence himself, so I think it's still healthy.
I know there may be darker channels we could turn to, but I think people need to learn that the guy you see on MSNBC or the op-ed you read in the Washington Post or that. The professor on YouTube is not representative of most people and he seems really ridiculous. He is an emperor without clothes. All you have to do is scream and that's what they did in that election.

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