January 22, 2016

National Review is right: Trump represents the death of the American conservative movement

John InglisRebel Blogger

For a long time I have known not to trust the media in the United States or Canada. I am now losing trust in the conservative media in the States as well.

This has only become apparent now that the race for the Republican nomination has come down to Trump against Cruz.

A lot of Canadians don't realize that Trump is not conservative. Yes, he supports a handful of issues that conservatives care about (depending on which audience he is trying to impress.) Otherwise, he has no discernible policy other than that his Trumpiness will “Make America Great Again."

Now he has begun actively campaigning for the Establishment Republican vote, too, rather than limiting his appeals to the conservatives in the party -- and he is bragging about it.

Cruz, on the other hand, is clearly the most conservative candidate in the race. Mark Levin calls him "Mr. Conservative," a label once applied to Barry Goldwater. Conservative Review gives Cruz a 97% rating. Polls say he is more likely to beat Hillary than Trump.

How has the American conservative media reacted to this state of affairs?

Probably the most visible and dramatic reaction has come from the venerable National Review, which has just released a special issue denouncing Donald Trump, calling him "a menace to American conservatism."

Some veteran conservative media figures, however, have thrown their support behind Trump, likely to increase their ratings or popularity. This support ranges outright endorsements to adoring coverage of Trump to the exclusion of other conservative candidates.

Many of these media figures know, and admit, that Trump is not particularly conservative. For example, Ann Coulter joked that she didn't care if Trump performed abortions in the White House, as long as he did what she wanted on immigration. Coulter ought to remember that conservatives are the ones who buy her books, or used to at least.

There are non-establishment conservatives who are standing by their principles however, including Dennis Prager, Joel Pollak, Ben Shapiro, Adam Carolla, Jonah Goldberg, Glenn Beck, and -- probably the finest thinker on the right -- Mark Levin. In the video below, Stephen Crowder says some conservatives have told him privately that they are only supporting Trump to increase their audience, and realize he is not a true conservative.

In an earlier article for National Review, David French described the three camps in the Republican Party: the corporatist movement ( a.k.a., the establishment); the tea-party constitutionalists; and those who simply oppose what liberalism is doing to the country. French puts Trump's supporters in the third category, and believes the establishment will back him against Cruz when the time comes. This suggests that it is not anti-establishment sentiment alone that accounts for Trump's support.

Conservative Americans should survey the media battlefield to see who is still fighting for the things they believe in. When the election is over and you have choice about which conservative media outlets you devote time to, remember where these pundits stood when the race was between a true conservative and Trump.

We are witnessing the death of the conservative movement in the United States. I can count far more “conservatives” who are backing Trump against Cruz than the other way around. These Trumpeters are losing all credibility with conservatives. Now that Trump is gaining Establishment support, he will turn on conservatives, including the conservative media, since he will then have all he needs: Power.

Julius Caesar's famous statement applies here:

"It is easier to find men who will volunteer to die, than to find those who are willing to endure pain with patience."

Mark Levin, who has been an absolute warrior for conservatism all his life, opened his Wednesday show by saying, “It’s alright. I’ll stand in the breach. I’ll be the conservative." He has not endorsed a candidate yet, but he spent his entire show demonstrating that Trump is using liberal tactics and positions to attack Cruz, and explaining why the Establishment is getting behind Trump.

He also explained that Trump's rise doesn't represent some new Jacksonian populist movement, but that it is, in fact, Nixonian. The fight within the GOP has come down to one between the Nixonian Republicans and the Reagan conservatives, not "outsiders."

The good news is that Levin vows he will deal with all those people pretending to be conservatives in the media, right after this election cycle.


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commented 2016-01-28 16:21:31 -0500
Thanks for debating John. I enjoyed it. Tell Ezra to get Disqus. I would comment here more often if the system were better, others would too. This system sucks.
commented 2016-01-28 16:03:35 -0500
I am not saying they should censor, but what they are doing attracts a certain type of audience.

Lots of people like Ann, I am not one, she seems like a very nice person when she is with her fans, s I can understand the appreciation people have for her.
commented 2016-01-28 14:23:53 -0500
Ann Coulter is a phenomenal researcher and her arguments are thunderous in their power and truth. I LOVE Ann Coulter. And listen, I like Ted Cruz. If Trump weren’t in the race, Cruz would be the guy. But Trump is doing it better. That’s why Jeff Sessions is working with Trump right now, and not Cruz. Ann’s argument is that when Cruz could have and should have spoken up … he didn’t. Trump speaks up and he does it every chance he gets. That’s the difference. And the difference is YUGE. You’re slinging some pretty specious allegations at Breitbart buddy. Holding them responsible for the comments is pretty dubious. I’m starting to sense you’re being disingenuous here, and that’s disappointing. Are you saying they should censor their comments section? That would be a terribly sad argument for a member of The Rebel to make. Andrew Breitbart would have NEVER censored his comments sections. And during the early part of this election cycle, many pundits were accusing Breitbart of being in the tank for Cruz. Breitbart writer John Nolte was highly critical of Trump until very recently. Your analysis of Breitbart is either an error or its disingenuous, either way its troubling. And your dismissal of the lovely Lady Ann Coulter is ridiculous. You should check with your fellow Rebel Gavin McInnes regarding his opinion of lovely Lady Ann. He agrees with me 100%.
commented 2016-01-28 12:56:31 -0500
Goldwater said John Wayne was as conservative than he was, and Wayne was for the same position as Reagan. Reagan actually did a radio address on the issue at the time, but it not available for free so you would have to buy the collection of radio addresses he did to hear it, but believe me, it is a fantastic series. More of his addresses were made into a book, by the same authors that made the last book I mentioned. America has never been a nationalist or imperialist country, it has been a patriotic country.
Ann Coulter is really not a good example of someone you should listen to this cycle, she has completely sold her integrity. She wrote a book (Demonic) about how conservatives do not go crazy for a savoir candidate like the left does, ie. Obama, Trudeau. She is doing the same for Trump, who (Trump) during the Amnesty fight, was calling for Amnesty for the illegals. And he slammed Romney’s position on self-deportation. Coulter has become what Eric Hoffer called a “true believer”.
Cruz was fighting Amnesty in 2013 with Jeff Sessions and Sessions’ integrity on this issue is impeccable. He said Cruz was on his side. I actually wonder how long you have followed Cruz, I have followed him since his interview with the Hoover Institution in January 2013, I’m sure if we were to check out Breitbart.com we could find dozens of articles from the Gang of 8 days saying Cruz was fighting against Amnesty. Because I followed that site a lot at the time.
The awkward thing about you posting a Breitbart article is that they are an organization which has accusations from their own staff of taking money from Trump to pump him. And this is sad, because Andrew Breitbart continues to be a great inspiration for me even after his death, and despite him being Jewish there are a ton of anti-Semites on the site now. Check out their comments section, there, as well as actual KKK-like groups are getting behind Trump, ironically Ivanka Trump is an Orthodox Jew. Breitbart still has some fantastic writers but Bannon has taken the site in a completely different direction, Breitbart.com under Andrew broke stories and made the media change their narrative. It does not do that anymore. It is just click-bait all the way through, the hints Levin has been dropping suggests that there is more to the Breitbart.com story, he is suggesting that they are one of the groups he would write about in his book on this topic.
commented 2016-01-28 10:34:09 -0500
Ann Coulter writes at Breitbart:

“At the three-day Conservative Political Action Conference in March 2013 — about the same time the Republican National Committee was paying $10 million for a report instructing the GOP to “embrace and champion comprehensive immigration reform” — there were only two speakers who opposed amnesty: moi — and Trump. (And that was only because the organizers didn’t know what we were going to say, so they couldn’t stop us.)

Sen. Ted Cruz spoke at that CPAC. But not a word against amnesty."

commented 2016-01-28 10:28:19 -0500
Reagan and Buckley were friends but they were bitter rivals over the Panama Canal issue, which was a defining issue of American nationalism. Buckley sided with JImmy Carter and the globalists, Reagan sided with America and Americans. Buckley liked Reagan, but he openly wished Reagan was more like Goldwater. In other words, a loser and a cuck. Reagan was far more of a social conservative than Goldwater. Goldwater was pro-abortion and pro-gay marriage. The American people loved Reagan because he was one of them and he had the courage to stand for his values, just like Trump. Up like Trump!
commented 2016-01-27 22:03:54 -0500
Ghost Tiger: Cruz has a harder stance than Trump on immigration, check the CR website, it tracks statements.
Also Bill Buckley and Reagan were friends, I have a book of letters written by Ronald Reagan to his friends called A Life in Letters, which includes their writings together. I am currently writing an article related to the Trump-thumping going on online, I think you will appreciate it.
Btw, not too long ago Donald was talking about how much he loved National Review. I am not a big fan of them, but what they did here was right.
commented 2016-01-27 15:44:19 -0500
You’re wrong on this one John. This is a one-issue election and that issue is immigration. People don’t care about conservatism, true or otherwise, and the definition keeps changing anyway. People care about nationalism, and Trump is Captain America. Cruz is a slimy Canadian who is using his slick trial lawyer techniques to appear as if he is the great conservative hope. Cruz is no American nationalist. Cruz is a politician and he is beholden to his sponsors. Trump is owned by no one. National Review has imploded. It was founded by Bill Buckley who was wrong on the Panama Canal when Reagan was right. You think Barry Goldwater is some kind of ultimate conservative? Buckley felt the same way John. He loved Goldwater and sneered at Reagan, just like you’re sneering at Trump. Goldwater lost John. Reagan won, just like Trump is going to. Trump 2016
commented 2016-01-26 18:05:11 -0500
Trump is definitely appealing the way he cuts through political correctness, but in the end I don’t trust him. I think he simply is an attention whore, and really don’t know what we will get once in power. Cruz is the most consistently conservative of all the candidates – just hoping the whole Canadian birth thing doesn’t destroy him.
commented 2016-01-23 19:22:45 -0500
Conservatives should form their own party and stop trying to dictate to the Republicans, maybe.
commented 2016-01-23 03:43:45 -0500
Trump is a liberal as far as Cruz is concerned, so he is not going to be Vice President and support Trump’s socially liberal positions, unless of course he doesn’t mind selling out to just get elected.
commented 2016-01-23 00:46:44 -0500
I’d like to see a Trump/Cruz ticket on the Republican side, in the next election: first, it would distinguish Trump from the “establishment” Republicans, and put a conservative in line to be president after 8 years of Trump rebuilding the USA after ’Bama’s mess.
commented 2016-01-23 00:15:38 -0500
The days of a fair election in the USA are over. In 2008 George Soros ensured Obama beat Billary Clinton for the nomination, even though Clinton had more support. Soros unleashed tons of money and his organization MovOn.Org to help Obama win the presidency. Soros supports Bernie Sanders as he is more left leaning than Killary, and fits in nicely with his Chapter 21 world domination plan. Maybe everyone will get lucky and George will kick the bucket.
commented 2016-01-23 00:12:48 -0500
Maybe this is what Barack Obama meant when he said he would fundamentally transform America. It’s interesting to see who comes out on what side of the Trump conundrum. Should be a fiery year for politics.
commented 2016-01-22 19:39:44 -0500
I think conservatives are slowly learning that a hard core conservative is completely unelectable in America and Canada.

Hell, just being pro-life will make you unelectable in America and Canada.

Conservatives need to cut their losses and accept a center right politician. The candidate that you really want – will never ever see the inside of the White House.
commented 2016-01-22 17:28:26 -0500
Sorry, I disagree. Mark Levin just doesn’t get it. People are sick of the Establishment. There are too many Trump haters because he is telling it how people think. I for one do not agree with the media party. It seems to get it tentacles into every election and seem to be able to convince even the most conservative thinkers. Lots of Lies seem to be being sent out there and I am kind of wondering if there is any truth anywhere? Let’s try and get others opinions on this before you jump the gun. I am afraid of what the media party is going to do for our Conservative party. Well, I am sorry but if it is the same old same old then we are in for a hard time in the future. I am for someone who wants to fight for all of Canadians and for Canada.