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Why I Am Having Nightmares About the Coming Election

I have often wondered what it must have been like to be a citizen of the European continent in the 1930s. Sure, you could still vote in elections. But increasingly, Europeans had to choose between voting for fascists like Hitler and voting for communists like Stalin. It was a nightmarish choice.

Let me be clear. I am not saying that Donald Trump is a new Hitler or Hillary Clinton is a new Stalin. At least, for America’s sake, I hope they aren’t. (Only time will tell.) But certain characteristics of both major-party candidates this year are ominously un-American, reflecting more 1930s Europe than the America we want to remember.

I think this is why so many Americans are distressed about the election this year. They sense something dramatic has changed, and not for the good. More than ever, they have to choose not just the less-evil, but the worst evil—whom to vote against.

Most Americans have vague or no recollections of what went on in Europe in the 1930s. But I was born in the late 1930s, and I feel that what happened “over there” has shaped America for the worse during my lifetime. Thus my nightmares about the coming election. Consider:

Trump: He promises to “make America great again.” (“Deutschland uber alles,” anyone?) He rants against immigrants and Muslims and conniving foreign nations like Mexico and China. (Jews and gypsies get a pass this time.) He is a bully. He promises hope to those who have been left behind economically and socially. He attracts huge and very devoted crowds at his rallies. He has no coherent program, at least yet—you have to believe in him as a great leader.

Whom does he remind you of, at least vaguely?

Clinton: She is secretive to a fault, perhaps paranoid in her pursuit of power. There are hints of hidden illnesses, so reminiscent of Uncle Joe. An unhidden lust for money at any cost. Considering “two for the price of one” (Bill and Hill), there are the key operatives who conveniently die when in disfavor. They do not hesitate to use the Justice Department, and especially the IRS, to persecute opponents. She runs a tight operation, as secretive as she is personally, and has an ideological platform for totally transforming America.

Whom does she remind you of, at least vaguely?

Again, let me be clear. I do not think Trump has a holocaust in mind; he is just an opportunist using “the other” both domestically and abroad to gain power. And I do not think Clinton has the stamina for sustained great purges and great gulags. Yes, she has a lust for power, but she has even more lust for getting rich through politics. She can be bought, and has been, constantly.

It is these characteristics, however, that are so disturbing. They build on what has come before, but suggest a revolutionary escalation. Every president during my lifetime has added to the power of the American empire and the deep state, but now we seem to be at an unprecedented and transformative junction.

In 1930s Europe, the opposition to totalitarianism disappeared. For whatever reasons we wish to ascribe to them, the “classical liberals” who believed in limited government and peace were never able to achieve power. The great intellectuals of the Austrian School of political economy, like Mises and Hayek, became refugees from both fascism and communism.

In 21st-century America, this classical-liberal tradition was carried on by the Ron Paul movement. Paul waged a valiant fight for the ideals that once made America exceptional, but by this late date he was a voice in the wilderness in the political environment of perpetual war and a police state. The hard evidence is that he never had the support of even 10 percent of American voters, and now with his retirement the political movement centered on his leadership has disappeared. (The intellectual movement, thankfully, is prospering under the leadership of the Mises Institute.) We are left politically with the distressing choice of 2016—a limited (for now) version of the choices that Europeans faced in the 1930s, pitting “right” against “left,” but both of them totalitarian.

There is no way that someone with my political disposition could have voted in the early 1930s for the communists—that way led to open and total destruction of Western civilization. So could I have taken a chance with the fascism that had not yet unveiled its worst characteristics, hoping at best for a refuge like Franco Spain, where, after a horrible and inevitable civil war, some semblance of European civilization remained intact? Or would I have just not voted? Or fled?

Fast forward to America in 2016. At this point, my choice seems to be between a buffoon and an evil woman. But there are those haunting characteristics of the two candidates that point at what may be coming.

I know I cannot vote for Clinton, but do I take a chance with Trump? Yes, he is disgusting personally, but at least he offers some chance of preserving some semblance of constitutional governance—we would still have free speech and the Second Amendment in relatively good shape. Yes, increasing civil strife is inevitably on the horizon, as the militarism budget and entitlements increasingly crowd out the welfare goodies now expected by much of the population. But, at least, there is some hope that “our side” could prevail in some tattered form.

Or do I flee? Lucky or insightful Europeans of the 1930s could flee to England, then America. But what options are available to Americans as things get worse? Panama, as the redoubt of the hemisphere’s wealthy (like Switzerland in Europe)? Costa Rica, as a fairly close refuge of peace and neutrality (like Sweden in Europe)? Some Caribbean island too small and unimportant to be noticed by the empire? (Are you prepared to be a modern Robinson Crusoe?) Or maybe Canada, where just being less belligerent than the United States may be the best we can hope for? But how can we be sure that any of these will not end up like Norway or Hungary—occupied?

At any rate, most Americans (myself included, probably) will not consider these options, just as most continental Europeans in 1930 did not consider their flight options until it was too late.

This is why I am having nightmares as November 8 approaches.

David Franke was a founder of the conservative movement in the late 1950s and early 1960s. He is currently writing his magnum opus on the trajectory of conservatism and American politics during his lifetime.

41 Comments (Open | Close)

41 Comments To "Why I Am Having Nightmares About the Coming Election"

#1 Comment By My Stalin On October 6, 2016 @ 1:50 am

” I am not saying that Donald Trump is a new Hitler or Hillary Clinton is a new Stalin.”

Of course not. But Hillary’s more like Stalin than Trump is like Hitler. She even looks a little like him. Squat. Clever and calculating but not brilliant. Stiff. Cold fish. At any rate it’s not difficult to imagine her passing down life-at-hard-labor sentences for trifling PC violations in some Commie kangaroo court.

If I recall correctly, Bob Tyrell was the first to notice her affinity with Papa Joe, way back in the 1990s.

But Trump as Hitler? I don’t see it. No stirring oratory, no psychotic desire to exterminate people, and, crucially, no body count. Unlike Hillary, who already racked up a tidy score in that very competitive sport – indeed, there must already be at least a few thousand innocent dead because of what she did at State, a few tens of thousands of casualties, and of course a few million refugees and migrants.

“We could obliterate Iran!” – Hillary Clinton, 2008. Sounds a little like Stalin, but more like Kim Jong Il or Ahmedinejad really. And in any case Stalin specialized in scourging his own people, not foreigners. Which brings us to 2016’s “[irredeemable] basket of deplorables”, which again sounds a bit like Stalin. Trump wants to round up illegals, but he wants to deport them, not put them in concentration camps. But what does Hillary have in mind for the irredeemable deplorables? Who knows? I mean, she can’t deport them because they’re Americans. Is she really going to let all those millions of racists, bigots and neo-Nazis remain at liberty? Isn’t that kind of inflammatory rhetoric calculated to pave the way to use the police power of the state against her political enemies? And is that not, well, “Stalinesque”?

So do I vote for not-quite-Stalin, who might throw me and my kind in the Gulag, establish a decadent PC imperium, and unleash a succession of wars that bleed us dry because of her known bad judgment and incompetence, or not-really-Hitler, who is a roll of the dice but might actually do something about out-of-control immigration, the endless wars, and the foul effects of globalism, even as he appalls us with his tastelessness and vanity?

The question answers itself.

#2 Comment By St Louisan On October 6, 2016 @ 1:51 am

Unless you have some sort of evidence that everyone else somehow missed, insinuations that the Clintons have had people killed is on the same level as insinuations that George W Bush ordered 9/11.

#3 Comment By JonF On October 6, 2016 @ 6:09 am

Re: there are the key operatives who conveniently die when in disfavor.

Your piece is ruined by stooping to tin-foil hattery from “The Clinton Chronicles”.

#4 Comment By Kirt Higdon On October 6, 2016 @ 7:28 am

Ridiculous. You could find some such vague similarities between any pair of politicians and Stalin and Hitler. Why do so many people need to compare an average politician to Stalin or Hitler to justify not voting for them? That’s an awfully low bar. We should all strive for higher standards. Besides, the Trump and Hilly have plenty of defects of their own.

#5 Comment By Kurt Gayle On October 6, 2016 @ 8:01 am

Mr. Franke: In a TAC essay entitled “Won By One” (Feb. 23, 2007) you describe yourself this way: “I am a religious agnostic and, in political terms, a libertarian, classical liberal, individualist, or radical — anything but conservative.”

Back on February 19th in an essay about the Republican candidates (“What I Learned from CNN’s Town Hall”) you set forth “Two Ways to Decide Who to Vote For” – the first being “Who would you most like to have a beer with?”

“Maybe Kasich, if he’s not a complete phony about being a regular guy. But none of them, really. Heck, I voted for Obama but his beer guzzling session was as phony as his birth certificate. (That’s a joke, Donald!) I prefer vodka martinis, Moscow mules, or wine to beer at this stage of my life. I can see comparing wine vintages with Jeb — he’s a Bush, after all — but I wouldn’t trust any of them offering me the harder stuff before they handed me a blank check with their name as beneficiary. Especially Donald. One of the nice things about the two town halls was how Anderson Cooper would end the interviews with some personal questions of the candidates, all in the effort to make them seem like human beings. It turns out Trump insists he does not drink liquor, smoke, or do drugs. I can understand the last two, but I was surprised at the first…”

Fast forward to the last four weeks of the Trump vs. Clinton campaign for President. Today your essay uses a lot of scary imagery from the 1930s and you complain “I am having nightmares as November 8 approaches.”

But nightmares or not, you have decided who you’ll vote for on November 8th:

“I know I cannot vote for Clinton, but do I take a chance with Trump? Yes, he is disgusting personally, but at least he offers some chance of preserving some semblance of constitutional governance—we would still have free speech and the Second Amendment in relatively good shape. Yes, increasing civil strife is inevitably on the horizon, as the militarism budget and entitlements increasingly crowd out the welfare goodies now expected by much of the population. But, at least, there is some hope that ‘our side’ could prevail in some tattered form.”

#6 Comment By mle detroit On October 6, 2016 @ 8:06 am

This would almost be persuasive had you not lifted the portrait of Hillary Clinton straight from Fox News. And frankly, especially after last week, more and more American women are coming to share her lust for power.

#7 Comment By Rob On October 6, 2016 @ 9:12 am

I expected better of this publication than “vague” comparisons to Hitler. One could turn to any number of left-wing organs for that sort of thing.

#8 Comment By Jack Shifflett On October 6, 2016 @ 9:24 am

“Whom does she remind you of, at least vaguely?”

Setting aside the accuracy (or inaccuracy) of your description of Ms. Clinton, the correct answer to your question is: Richard Nixon.

Likewise, the correct answer to your identical question about Donald Trump is: Benito Mussolini, or perhaps Bozo the Clown.

“Let me be clear.” I am not saying, Mr. Franke, that your arguments are logically and historically absurd. I am simply saying that I happen to know something about Hitler and Stalin; and believe me, Mr. Franke, Trump and Clinton are no Hitler and Stalin. America today is not Europe in the 1930’s,

As to your nightmares: I suggest a glass of warm milk before bed.

#9 Comment By Ray On October 6, 2016 @ 9:28 am

Your implied equivalence between these two candidates is ridiculous.
Mr Trump is a mendacious buffoon (though comparing him to Hitler is just silly).
Mrs Clinton is a typical, but very competent politician. She is about as honest or dishonest as most US politicians. Same for her ambition. She is not paranoid. She is not somehow implicated in anyone’s death. She is not a criminal. She actually pays taxes. She is definitely not ideological. She is definitely to the right of President Obama, and indeed partisans within her own party fault her for being too much of a centrist.
For all her faults, Mrs Clinton is clearly a credible and reasonable candidate for President, and would in all probability be a good, or at least average one. Despite what Fox News says, she is not Armageddon in a pant suit.
Mr Trump is a surreal caricature of the worst in America. His election might or might not do great harm, but it would certainly bring lasting shame to a great nation.

#10 Comment By Brooklyn Blue Dog On October 6, 2016 @ 10:11 am

Hillary’s not Stalin. She’s Nixon. In politics as well as personality.

#11 Comment By collin On October 6, 2016 @ 10:13 am

What if Trump ends up reminds people of Reagan or HRC reminds people of her husband all while the economy continues to improve? (I remember 1992 when everyone said Clinton or Bush were terrible candidates.) Anyway, wasn’t the Saint Ronald Reagan the leader in monetizing his Post-Presidency in the early 1990s?

#12 Comment By mrscracker On October 6, 2016 @ 10:46 am

Lady Macbeth & Citizen Kane come to mind.

#13 Comment By LouisM On October 6, 2016 @ 11:00 am

I have read warnings that Australia / New Zealand would have a very difficult time in a Pan Asian conflict having to fend off both Chinese and fend off Islam. From history, Maoist and Japanese torture exceeded even European history.

Central America is the preferred gateway for the 2nd and 3rd world wishing to enter the US as well as terrorists. Also the Chinese are heavily involved in Panama Canal and the new Canal in Nicaragua. Don’t expect peace, flowers and chocolates if China wants an official colony (as the Soviets had in Cuba & Venezuela) in the Americas.

Obama/Hillary Clinton remind me of Mao & Stalin. Obama’s seems very relatable to the Cultural Revolution involved leftist thought indoctrination and persecution for wrong think. Stalin was a perpetual warmongerer like BushII and Hillary Clinton.

As far as Trump is concerned, there are powers higher than the president of the US and like Hitler if Trump goes too far outside of their narrative then those power brokers will force Trumps hand. Read history and Hitler inherited a bankrupt and demilitarized Germany facing invasive leftist revolutionaries from Russia. Russia was the covert and overt aggressor with a history of mass murder and starvation in Russia and throughout eastern Europe. Hitler made peace to stall for time to secure its defenses against Stalin. Hitler attacked the jews only after the jews attacked Hitler in the media, law, govt, education, etc but initially he was only targeting anarchists and revolutionaries and those fighting Hitlers domestic programs. Stalin was trying to spread communism as if it were a disease. Hitler and national socialism was just as its name said “it was nationalist” and it primarily fought with those elites who were against nationalization of ethnic germans. It did not want to invade france or England or Russia but did so because of the mass murders of ethnic germans by Poles in Prussia (which England and France were backing the Poles). Hitler invaded Russia only after it was revealed that Stalin was massing tanks to invade Germany. Trump is also reactionary. I will grant that.

The parallel that I see is that the world is faced with a battle between globalism which is too big and is failing vs a resurgence of nationalism because nations want more control over the uncertainties they are facing.

#14 Comment By The The On October 6, 2016 @ 11:06 am

Wow what lazy thinking. Trump hasn’t said anything bad about immigrants but he has said the truth about illegal immigrants.

And immigration needs to be refuced. A million legal immigrants was never voted for by the American people. And what good does out immigration policy do for struggling nations like Sierra Leone which has 5 doctors for the entire nation when we allow their doctors to immigrate to the US?! We are just taking the best people and letting thousands die for lack of skilled labor that their communities paid for!

Immigration in small numbers can be great. But it needs to be in small numbers. And it needs to be regulated.

The federal government should be focused on our borders and not our pocketbooks! We should be working towards abolishing the income tax and replacing it with a flat tariff on imports.

That is how we shrink the federal government and secure the borders and make the US safe
again.

#15 Comment By Alex (the one that likes Ike) On October 6, 2016 @ 11:11 am

Ray,

Ah. The competence. Dead American ambassador. The whole Middle East aflame. The reaction of a five-year-old girl tormenting a beetle when watching a savage crowd tearing apart an old man. The social stability of European allies totally destroyed due to all mentioned.

Kim Kardashian would be more competent SoS.

#16 Comment By Johann On October 6, 2016 @ 11:14 am

History is not repeating itself. After WW1 and the Bolshevik revolution in Russia, there were communist riots in the streets of most European countries. Fascism was a reaction to the turbulence and violence of communism. European politicians turned to the appeal of nationalism to counteract the communists. It wasn’t just Germany, but most of Europe which turned to fascism in varying degrees.

While it is true that Trump’s success is due to a reaction to decades of disastrous neoliberal globalism, neoliberal ideology is considerably milder than the international communist ideology, and Trump’s nationalism is considerably milder than fascism.

We have seen what neoliberalism has done to our country and economy, and it doesn’t take a genius to know that continuing down that path will continue a gradual decline into economic stagnation and third world living conditions for a majority of Americans.

We don’t really know what a Trump administration will be. It could be an unmitigated disaster or an improvement from the neocon/neoliberal unholy alliance. I’m pessimistic. Unless there is some way to destroy the think tank cesspool that surrounds DC, a Trump administration will probably be full of neocon/neoliberal hacks and they will win anyway.

#17 Comment By bad but not THAT bad On October 6, 2016 @ 11:15 am

“Likewise, the correct answer to your identical question about Donald Trump is: Benito Mussolini, or perhaps Bozo the Clown.”

Or Silvio Berlusconi.

Just as Clinton is more Dilma Rousseff (i.e. corrupt, incompetent), Imelda Marcos, or Benazir Bhutto than Stalin.

#18 Comment By VikingLs On October 6, 2016 @ 12:56 pm

@Ray

There thousands of Libyans, Syrians, and even Ukrainians that might beg to differ with you on Clinton’s competence and lack of ideology.

#19 Comment By AG On October 6, 2016 @ 1:24 pm

If the unfounded wish that Trump will “at least” uphold the first and second amendments is the tipping factor, consider that he has vowed vengeance against journalists who speak out against him (so much for the first) and has come out strongly in the not-so-distant past for gun control, (you really trust him on the second?), voting for a man whom you most likely wouldn’t consider leaving alone with your 13 year old granddaughter seems like a capitulation not worthy of your stature as a political philosopher.
The past eight years have seen zero movement on changing gun laws, so, given that Clinton isn’t making that a top priority either, none of this holds water.

#20 Comment By Joe the Plutocrat On October 6, 2016 @ 1:26 pm

Ray nails it, save his final sentence. “a great nation” by definition nations are somewhat shameless (ironically, this would made Trump a Reality TV star). it’s funny, in a hyperbolic 21st century zeitgeist kind of way, the author advocates for a “buffoon” who cribbed Hitler’s playbook, over an “evil woman”. For my money, “evil” is somewhat subjective in use – I find it more of an epithet than personality trait. Whereas, a buffoon is a more objective assessment. HRC is a ruthless and focused politician. I’m not a fan, but at least her resume suggests she is prepared and interested in the job (as opposed to popularity/ratings)

#21 Comment By Colonel Bogey On October 6, 2016 @ 1:36 pm

“Deutschland uber Alles” is still the German national anthem, as it was long before the rule of the unlamented Adolf. If you want to talk about hysterical songs, try “The Battle Hymn of the Republic”.
Mussolini, obviously, was a fascist, and so were Dollfuss and Jose Antonio Primo de Rivera. But Franco was a military ruler, under whom the Spanish Falange party was mere window dressing, and Adolph was a National Socialist, something much worse than mere ‘fascism’. (To call him a fascist is a libel–against fascists.)
If you really think you need a foreign refuge, forget Costa Rica. Russia might be OK.

#22 Comment By Myron Hudson On October 6, 2016 @ 2:27 pm

I agree with Jack Shifflett; Hillary is a Richard M. Nixon (or, at her possible best, a Margaret Thatcher). Trump…

I’ve been in construction for more than forty years, the early decades spent in PA and NJ. Trump, as a shyster developer, has been on my radar a long time. I would not trust him to look out for anything but himself. I would expect him to be his own worst enemy on a regular basis, and blame others for it.

#23 Comment By jeff On October 6, 2016 @ 2:28 pm

Two points of contention that other commenters have not addressed:

One, you suggest that something immediate and drastic is occurring the U.S. On the other hand, these two candidates are the logical outcomes of ongoing trends in politics. We have seen Clinton’s candidacy coming for at least two decades, and she advances step for step with Obama’s last 8 years. There is nothing new nor drastic that she is proposing, which is part of why her polling drags so badly. Trump, on the other hand, may have emerged as a political candidate only recently, but his ideas are the product a continual stream of feigned outrage and conscious misdirection from the political and media right for at least two decades as well.

Two, you suggest that Trump will adhere to the Constitution. There is nothing to suggest that Trump has any idea, or any interest, in what is constitutional. No candidate in generations has gone as far as he has in his megalomania: “Only I can fix it.” He has no regard for the Constitution.

#24 Comment By Dakarian On October 6, 2016 @ 4:40 pm

To try to give some defense towards this article, which feels a bit tongue in cheek, I think I get the idea behind it.

On Trump’s side, you have a voting group that is struggling and doing horrible due to forces they have little control over. They want answers and solutions and to be back to the strength that they once were. Trump, adn the person you link him with, offered all of that and, along with it, a way to rebel against the forces holding them down. He also provided concrete threats to rally against and put blame towards as hindering the cause.

Along with it, the group mentality had a large dose of capitalist spirits and conservative morality but the religious link is heavily downplayed. There’s also a large drive of exceptionalism and a willingness to tell it as it is from the viewpoint of someone who is fed up.

As for Clinton, that voting bloc is concerned of a wealthy elite who abuses and leeches off of the working poor. This block holds an ideal that relies on equality and good naturedness and is willing to heavily gut the system and remake it into this image, but those in control will have nothing to do with it. In Clinton they see, not that dream, but the first major steps towards establishing that dream. Use someone powerful to overcome the original elite, then use that new power to empower the dream.

Along with this, capitalism is downplayed over attempting to equalize the playing field and religion is, at best, out of the picture and, in some circles, part of the problem.

Combined, both felt that a stronger military force against their enemies are in order and that those who disagree are not to be listened to.

For small touches, Trump and his ‘link’ politician was willing to work with Russia but turned against him when it seemed convenient. Meanwhile, Clinton is in love of secrets.

Now, yes, there’s a big difference between “oh, there’s some similar things” and “Oh, they are..” A Trump presidency won’t bring about a Latino Holocaust. A Clinton presidency won’t turn the country into the USSA. And those suggesting it (especially the “oh, (my candidate) really isn’t like that, but (other person) might be” is flat out silly.

Any extreme event can be seen in more moderated elements, and the other way around. Healthy game playing turns into a life-ruining addiction in the extreme. A healthy concern over crime, taken into the extreme, turns into an authoritarian police state.

That you can find politicans, when taken into extremes, fitting the mold of horrible parts of history is natural, and also a good warning. ALL ideas result in this same problem, including your own and my own. That’s why our country was designed to make it difficult for one pure idea to lock down the country and why it’s so important for us to have political opponents. We get Trump instead of Hitler and Clinton instead of Stalin, because the country is too divided, and forced to work together in the middle of that divide, to purify and go extreme. It’s why I hate to see the republican party so torn up right now, because I do NOT want them too weak to push back the Democrats, just like how I was happy to see Democrats revive in 2006 to push back Republicans.

So no. Don’t run. Well, do if you want but really, so long as one side doesn’t fold we’ll be fine. If Clinton wins, republicans will push back anything she does (and if not, I doubt the folks voting for Trump will be asleep in 2018). If Trump wins Democrats may pull back as they tend to be less…..direct, but they’ll disrupt in their own way so long as the entire country doesn’t go into Mindless Patriotism Mode.

This election is stupid. I’ll be blunt about it. but this country is equipped to handle stupidity. We’ll suffer for it, maybe in permanent ways, but we’re also too fickle and argument loving to stay that way.

Just make sure that the other side doesn’t WIN. And realize your side shouldn’t WIN either (because Communism or Nazism, or whatever extreme your idea turns into, it’ll suck for all) and, with that in mind, keep up the fight.

#25 Comment By David Naas On October 6, 2016 @ 5:54 pm

Sir,
Your essay is regrettably a fine example of plausible nonsense.
As others have said, Clinton (Hillary) is not Stalin, more like Nixon (in all his paranoid glory). Trump is certainly not like Hitler, even Benny the Moose. More of a combination of P. T. Barnum and Don Rickles — except that Rickles’ insults were marginally funny.
Nor, finally, is 2016 America anywhere near like Weimar Germany. To suggest it is contains a rather contemptuous dismissal of America.
In the end, you seem to maintain an unknown quantity which could destroy the United States (your suggestion) is a better choice than the Spawn of Satan? Just how “conservative” is that idea? It strikes me evermore that some people will try and identify as “conservatives” when their program is pure radical nihilism. And the ancienticity of your credentials is of no import. Right-wing does not make for Conservative. Lawrence Dennis also had Right-wing credentials (to utilize your own logic).

#26 Comment By sglover On October 6, 2016 @ 5:59 pm

Obama/Hillary Clinton remind me of Mao & Stalin. Obama’s seems very relatable to the Cultural Revolution involved leftist thought indoctrination and persecution for wrong think.

And yet even after this running dog bark-bark, the Red Guards still haven’t caught LouisM. Wily LouisM! Like all deviationist wreckers, LouisM’s wiliness can never be overestimated. Practice greater diligence for Our Leader Obama, comrades!

#27 Comment By Alex (the one that likes Ike) On October 6, 2016 @ 6:47 pm

Just wonder how many progressives ever bothered to actually read something about social nationalism and fascism before using the words “Hitler” and “fascist” in the same sentence.

#28 Comment By tzx4 On October 6, 2016 @ 7:20 pm

An essay this hyperbolic and far fetched is beneath this website. That the author is a Trump supporter comes as no surprise, as Mr. Trump is far fetched and hyperbolic.
My immediate thought reading the author’s assertion that Mrs. Clinton is secretive, is that at this time it is not discernible whether her alleged secretiveness is a built in character fault, or if it is a defensive response to over 20 years of fierce unprincipled hounding by a vociferous group of right wing opponents.
His assertion that Mr. Trump is more likely to better preserve the Constitution is debatable. Mr. Trump is publicly weaseling on whether or not he will accept the outcome of the election as legitimate. How is that for protecting the Constitution?

#29 Comment By Matt On October 6, 2016 @ 8:16 pm

Communism and fascism are both on the left side of the spectrum, unless you think the Nazis were small government free market libertarians.
The Nazis were big government socialists, had a cradle to grave welfare state, authoritarian government. There was nothing identifiably Right about them, they were thoroughly Left.
People might say they were nationalist, and that’s why they are placed on the Right side of the spectrum, but this is stupid, many leftist totalitarian regimes had hard nationalism.

There is no such thing as a tyrannical right wing government, small government doesn’t have the resources to inflict a tyranny, and people on the Right aren’t interested in a tyranny.

Fascists and communists are big government leftists just different flavours of Authoritarian Left.
There has never been a right wing government in recent history, and it would be nice if someone tried it for a change.

Tyranny comes from the Left, always has.

#30 Comment By Nick Stuart On October 6, 2016 @ 9:05 pm

It is impossible to predict whether Trump will live up to the promises he has made that have garnered him pro-life endorsements by the likes of Troy Newman (Operation Rescue), National Right to Life Committee PAC, West Virginians for Life PAC, Ben Carson, Marjorie Dannenfelser (pro-life activist and president of the Susan B. Anthony List), Frank Pavone (National Director of Priests for Life) and others.

It is virtually certain that Clinton will live down to the promises that have garnered her the endorsement of pro-abortion endorsements like Ilyse Hogue (President: NARAL), Cecile Richards (President: Planned Parenthood), Eleanor Smeal (President: Feminist Majority), NARAL Pro-Choice America, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, and others.

Promises like the promise to repeal the Hyde Amendment that has been estimated to have saved over 2,000,000 lives since enacted.

While Trump’s pro-life position is recent and sketchy, it is immeasurably better for the cause of life than Clinton’s longtime abortion at any time for any reason stance.

Stand on your Principles™ and vote for neither if this is what you have determined to do. In doing so you will cooperate with evil by passively helping elect Clinton. The blood of the unborn who die in consequence will be on your hands.

#31 Comment By Matt On October 6, 2016 @ 10:53 pm

I don’t see evil policies on the Trump side, what’s this ” evil ” people are talking about.

Is it evil to enforce border security and immigration law? In a time of lawlessness I suppose it could be seen as evil to enforce the law.
Is it evil to put walls and barriers on your countries border? No, it’s actually common sense and a protective measure for your citizens, if they are still important. Countries have done this for thousands of years.

Is it evil to deport overstayers and illegal immigrants ? No, countries do this all the time.

There is nothing ” Evil ” in Trumps plans or policies, they are just common sense.

#32 Comment By sglover On October 7, 2016 @ 11:00 am

@David Naas — all said very well, except that Franke’s “article” isn’t “plausible nonsense”, it’s just nonsense.

And the ancienticity of your credentials is of no import. Right-wing does not make for Conservative.

I think that if Franke had any self-awareness, he’d have written that little capsule autobiography to emphasize something else. Anything else, like say his fondness for keeping goldfish. As it stands it reads like the description of a guy who hasn’t had a new thought in 50+ years, and is proud of it.

#33 Comment By Joshua B On October 7, 2016 @ 2:12 pm

“Yes, he is disgusting personally, but at least he offers some chance of preserving some semblance of constitutional governance—we would still have free speech and the Second Amendment in relatively good shape.”

Yeah, okay…

#34 Comment By DancerGirl On October 7, 2016 @ 5:22 pm

The insinuation that Hillary may have had people killed; the notion that the First Amendment might be safe under a President who has shown his propensity to punish the press; critiquing Hillary as having a “lust for power,” but refusing to do the same for a guy who (unlike Hillary) has no record of service and no inclination toward the same — this piece is appalling.

#35 Comment By Deb C On October 7, 2016 @ 7:52 pm

What absolute rubbish. I once would have thought such unrelieved nonsense to be beneath this publication.

When I discovered this publication and website a few years ago, I was delighted. The tone of the articles and, especially, of the comment sections was head and shoulders above most of the political magazines out there. But this magazine seems to be another casualty of the election. I won’t be renewing my support. This piece of drivel is just too much.

#36 Comment By J.R. On October 7, 2016 @ 10:19 pm

I find it amusing to see Conservative pundits, of every degree of augustness, claim that their free speech is being stifled and the Second Amendment is under attack. In the first instance, the very act of saying this and having an audience gives it the lie. In the second, one need only look at the historic record to see that this is the best time to be a gun owner in America since 1927.

A private citizen taking exception to what you say isn’t “censorship.” If you feel you must defend your ideology, then learn to construct a defeasible argument free of strawmen, logical fallacies, and outright untruths.

#37 Comment By I Use A Cane On October 7, 2016 @ 11:38 pm

My nightmares about this election tend to ebb and flow with Clinton’s poll numbers. I wouldn’t let Trump onto my property, but I’ll vote for him over Clinton any day of the week.

#38 Comment By cecelia On October 8, 2016 @ 2:32 am

this is nonsense well below the usual standard here at TAC

#39 Comment By Fran Macadam On October 9, 2016 @ 9:18 am

Canada’s increasingly signed on to become a nation economically dependent on selling warfare, as its own peaceful manufacturing was offshored. The unprecedented recent fifteen billion dollar sale of weaponry to Saudi Arabia for its war of choice in Yemen was hailed as necessary for “jobs, jobs, jobs.” The country’s war bark certainly doesn’t match the U.S. bite, but it is even more unhinged in its warmongering anti-Russian hysteria than even the McCain “bomb-bomb” hot warriors of America.

This is not your grandfather’s “honest broker” Canada, but a neocon satrapy driven by bankster appetite, Wall Street’s Bay Street subsidiary.

#40 Comment By Jim On October 9, 2016 @ 9:32 am

TRUMP: I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything. BUSH: Whatever you want. TRUMP: Grab ’em by the pussy. You can do anything. BUSH: Uh, yeah, those legs, all I can see is the legs. TRUMP: Oh, it looks good.

And that is about the “worst” of it and you will hear far “worse” about men at any hens’ night with male strippers. Talking about grabbing a pussy with another male seems boringly normal pub talk.

US media were prepared to report with some semblance of impartiality, that is until Trump surged ahead in the polls. Then everything changed drastically as The New York Times and Washington Post threw dozens of reporters on to digging up dirt on Trump to be released at a time it would most benefit Hillary.

I have never seen such a sneakily biased approach taken at any election.The media clearly want Trump gone this time. And those in the Republican Party feigning indignant rage are appealing only to their wives.

But has Trump just initiated himself into a long line of Presidents who behaved “badly”?
Bush senior and junior were accused of all sorts of sexual shenanigans.
Frank Sinatra supplied Jack Kennedy and his Administration with a steady supply of willing women.

The United States fifteenth President, James Buchanan was the country’s only life-long bachelor President. He had a continuous homosexual affair over a decade with William Rufus King, a former vice-president under Millard Fillmore. The pair were secretly referred to as, Miss Nancy and Aunt Fancy.

Grover Cleveland had a chorus line of extra marital ladies. One was Maria Crofts Halpin who later accused Cleveland of fathering her son, Oscar. Cleveland, while never admitting paternity, sent her regular child support cheques. When he ran for president in 1884, his opponents taunted him with the slogan, “Ma Ma, where’s my pa?…. gone to the White House, ha ha ha.” Cleveland still prevailed as President in the ensuing election.

Even Franklin Roosevelt’s wheel chair copped a right ol’ hammering and his paralysis proved no impediment to his womanising. He had a life-long affair with Lucy Mercer, his wife’s social secretary. When his wife Eleanor stumbled upon some sexually explicit love letters between her husband and Lucy she threatened to divorce him, but that didn’t happen and Eleanor remained FDR’s partner, if not lover, for life. Undaunted, FDR continued his relationship with Mercer until his death in 1945 (Lucy Mercer was actually at the President’s bedside when he died.) Other affairs included his secretary, Missy Le Hand, and another with the Crown Princess Marta of Norway. Eleanor, like a peeved Hillary Clinton, got even with her own extramarital soirees with Nancy Cook, Marion Dickerman and Lorena Hickok.

It’s no secret that Uma Abedin and Hillary have been playing stinky finger for over a decade.

Lyndon B Johnson, when referring to JFK’s sexual exploits, claimed,

“I have had more women by accident than he’s had on purpose.”

A woman named Madeline Brown claimed to have had a 20-year affair with Johnson, which, although she said was purely physical, produced her a son. If so, LBJ was working her on the side, as he also, according to Johnson’s biographer Robert Caro, was conducting a 30-year affair with a woman named Alice Glass, beginning in 1937. Alice was the wife of a newspaper magnate who owned papers that strongly supported Johnson.

Andrew Jackson married his wife Rachel before she was divorced from her husband, making him the first President to be guilty of bigamy.

According to Ronald Reagan’s biographer, Kitty Kelley, he was accused of raping a woman called Selene Walters in her home when he was serving as president of the Screen Actors Guild. “I opened the door,” she said, “then it was the battle of the couch. I was fighting him. I didn’t want him to make love to me. He’s a very big man, and he just had his way.” Kelley also claims the much vaunted story about Reagan’s wife Nancy was true in that she did have a lengthy affair with Frank Sinatra. Ronald Reagan seemed to confirm the rumour by refusing to speak to Sinatra from that point on.

President Warren Harding was known to have mounted various women in the White House closet. Besides having a long affair with Carrie Fulton Phillips, the wife of his friend James Phillips, Harding was also screwing Nan Britton, a woman 30 years his junior, who produced him an illegitimate daughter. When Harding died, his wife Florence was accused of poisoning him.

Even the squeakily clean and miniature, bible-bashing, hapless Jimmy Carter said, “I’ve committed adultery in my heart many times.” And don’t bother mentioning Bill Clinton’s testosterone flushes… in fact over the past two hundred years the Presidency has been riddled with sex scandals. Not one president seems to have escaped a sex scandal of some sort.

Donald Trump appears not to have committed anything of substance just yet. You could say he is all talk!

And US media, believing they have finally sunk Trump, may actually have unintentionally anointed him into the club of sexually qualified Presidents.

#41 Comment By DGJ On October 9, 2016 @ 3:36 pm

Maybe you should follow Elon Musk to Mars. After this election he’s going to find a lot of volunteers for his colony.

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