Who can I turn toNow 52 years later, the blue collar class asks the same question. Who can I turn to?
When nobody needs me
My heart wants to know
And so I must go
Where destiny leads me
Two writers of different political stripes and backgrounds grasped this. On the right is Kurt Schlichter is a retired infantry officer (lieutenant colonel) in the infantry who became a civil defense attorney. He wrote a column, "So Conservatives, What Have We Learned From This Trump Thing?"
On the left is T. A. Frank, a Vanity Fair contributor who covers politics and policy. Frank preferred the Democratic convention to the Republican one.
But Frank wrote:
But I must admit, for what the feelings of one viewer are worth, I also found the pageant of Philadelphia alienating. While I’m mostly a caricature of blue-state America—sharing most of its enthusiasms, habits, and tastes—millions of my fellow citizens want to live quite differently, and I suppose, as blue-state America celebrated itself on-screen, I felt their pain. For a long time now, red-state America has been losing the culture wars, steadily, and sometimes quickly. Its people are in a defensive crouch. And, because the losers are seen as defenders of the indefensible, those on the winning side tend to view them with scorn and smugness. There was more of that in Philadelphia than most Democrats seemed to notice.Let me explain that discomfort Frank felt: alienation of the majority of the citizenry by elite governors can have dire consequences.
Now from Schlichter, the better of the two:
Did we ever actually listen to our people? I mean all our people, not just the people who went to the same colleges as us and who hang with us at the same awesome restaurants and read National Review. I mean the actual voters out there in wherever actual GOP voters live. Did we pay attention to them and their concerns? Did we listen to them about illegal immigration, about the impact of free trade, about the wars we supported? And did we fight? I don’t mean just give lip service to how bad and unwashed liberals are, but really get in there and stand up to these flag-hating, gender-inventing, God-booing jerks? Or did we look down on the very people we were depending on at election time?The answer of course is they did not listen. Today's conservatives do not believe this applies to them:
Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.That's from the Declaration of Independence.
The way we throw off bad governments in the 21st century America is through the ballot box. For now. As the conservative commentariat learned, the ballot box works.
So what have we learned about ourselves? Maybe that many of us are snobs. There's a lot of class warfare going on here, a lot of backroom snark, with a lot of conservatives who want to believe that the only people who could ever support Donald Trump are knuckle-dragging morons who can't cut it when it comes to anything besides digging ditches. Too many of us choose cultural solidarity with the liberals we live among over political solidarity with the people we expected to vote with us.
“Gosh,” we tell ourselves. “These people can’t even see what’s in their own best interest.” Except maybe they don’t like what they see. Maybe it’s because they decided we aren’t worth listening to. Maybe they don’t like us conservatives. And maybe we better figure out how to fix that instead of whining.Of course, the political eunuchs at The Weekly Standard and National Review do not see that they now hold dear the same bigotries the Left does. Remember when the Pigs dined with the Farmers at the end of Animal Farm?
Everyone labeled the pigs as sellouts.
What about the farmers?
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