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Are we witnessing the birth of a Revolution?


A historian explains the key markings of revolution. It’s a description worth reading.
Jon Miltimore | August 2, 2016

The Modern Era was born with a revolution. So begins Jacques Barzun’s seminal history, From Dawn to Decadence.

Martin Luther might not have intended to ignite a revolution when he pounded his 95 theses into the door of Wittenberg’s All Saints’ Church on Oct. 31, 1517. (This practice was not uncommon in Luther’s day; it was a device used by clergy to start debates.) But that is what he got. The Protestant Reformation upended the moral, social, religious, and political order of the day. Each of the major “revolutions” in the West that transpired in the wake of Luther’s revolution—England’s (1688), America’s (1776), France’s (1789), and all those until Russia’s in 1917—were mere aftershocks of the quake, Barzun argued.

The Protestant Reformation was of course much bigger than Luther. Revolutions have a lifeforce of their own.  Their leaders cannot only not control them; they are often swept away by their currents (see: Robespierre). What precipitates such powerful force?

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The 21st Century American Revolution



This is no ordinary Presidential election. We are experiencing something as close to a revolution as might be possible in America. The outrageous things some of the Presidential candidates are saying have captured the public’s rage, anger, and hate combined with an overwhelming outcry to dismantle the status quo in Washington D.C. At the same time, we are witnessing the evolution of political parties and a redefinition of terms like “liberal” and “conservative.” Donald Scarinci, PolitickerNJRead more

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The media’s Trump reckoning: ‘Everyone was wrong’ , except the Ridgewood blog

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From the New Yorker to FiveThirtyEight, outlets across the spectrum failed to grasp the Trump phenomenon.

By Hadas Gold

03/01/16 04:58 PM EST

Updated 03/01/16 05:28 PM EST

David Remnick, editor of the New Yorker, told his readers last summer that Donald Trump was running for president to promote his own brand and that the “whole con might end well before the first snows in Sioux City and Manchester.”

That was quite measured compared to James Fallows, the national correspondent of more than three decades for the Atlantic, who wrote confidently — and with his own bold for emphasis — “Donald Trump will not be the 45th president of the United States. Nor the 46th, nor any other number you might name. The chance of his winning the nomination and election is exactly zero.”

Those two mandarins weren’t alone in dismissing Trump’s chances. Washington Post blogger Chris Cillizza wrote in July that “Donald Trump is not going to be the Republican presidential nominee in 2016.” And numbers guru Nate Silver told readers as recently as November to “stop freaking out” about Trump’s poll numbers.

Now all these journalists, and more, are coming to grips with their mistaken assessments. And some, too, are freaking out.

In an interview this week, Remnick sounded both shocked and sad at Trump’s success, saying it was “beyond belief” and reflects an “ugliness” that appeals to “every worst instinct” in America.

“The fact that so many of us, all of us, were wrong in predicting anywhere near the extent of his success so far, may be partly due to the fact we didn’t want to believe those currents could be appealed to so well and so deeply and successfully,” Remnick said.

Read more:

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Iowa Will Gauge Ardor to Upend Politics as Usual



DES MOINES — The presidential race hurtled over the weekend toward a watershed moment: voting that will start to reveal the true depth of Americans’ desire to cast aside traditional politicians and Washington-style compromise and embrace disruptive outsiders appealing to their passions.

After a year of countless and often conflicting polls, more than 250,000 Iowans are expected to attend caucuses on a relatively mild Monday night and render judgment on insurgent candidates who would bar Muslims from the country (Donald J. Trump), oppose concessions to Democrats (Senator Ted Cruz of Texas) and pursue a high-tax, big-government agenda (Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont). Voters are poised to bring order to the race, or reorder politics, as in no other recent election.

Money, experience and endorsements — advantages that usually turn candidates like Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush, the former governor of Florida, into inevitable nominees — will be tested against the potent messages of rivals promising upheaval.

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Oregon stand-off militiaman killed in shootout with the FBI

Bundy Ranch

Oregon stand-off militiaman killed in shootout with the FBI: Traffic stop turns into deadly gunfight, ending with militia’s spokesman dead and leader Ammon Bundy arrested along with seven others

Traffic cops stopped the Bundy brothers and seven others on Tuesday
Shots were fired; LaVoy Finicum was killed, Ryan Bundy was wounded
Finicum, 55, a married father of 11 and grandfather of 19, acted as the militia’s spokesman
Told an Oregon paper a day before his death that law enforcement officials ‘have become more hardened’ towards their group
At the start of the occupation, Finicum said he would rather die for freedom than face arrest  
Ammon Bundy and four others were detained at the scene; they have been charged with ‘conspiracy to impede federal officers’
Another three were arrested elsewhere soon after, police confirmed
Not clear who opened fire; the hospital and highway were on lockdown
It comes more than three weeks after the Bundy brothers led an occupation of a federal building in Burns, Oregon, to protest 2 ranchers being jailed


PUBLISHED: 21:10 EST, 26 January 2016 | UPDATED: 10:38 EST, 27 January 2016

Oregon militia spokesman LaVoy Finicum has been shot dead after a traffic stop escalated into a shoot-out that saw Ryan Bundy wounded and eight leaders of the occupation movement arrested.

The group’s leader Ammon Bundy was among the militiamen arrested during the encounter on Tuesday afternoon as they drove to attend a community meeting in the neighboring town.

It was the culmination of a tense stand-off between federal agents and the activists more than three weeks after they took over a government building in Burns, Oregon, to protest two ranchers being jailed.

According to local media, shots were fired within minutes of the traffic stop, killing Finicum and wounding 43-year-old Ryan Bundy.

It is not clear who opened fire first.

Ammon Bundy, Ryan Bundy, and three other leaders of the occupation – Ryan Payne, 32; Brian Cavalier, 44, and Shawna Cox, 59 – were charged with conspiracy to impede federal officers,Oregon Live reports.

All detained militia members were being held at Multnomah County Jail without bail Wednesday

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Americans hate the U.S. government more than ever


A handful of industries are those “love to hate” types of businesses, such as cable-television companies and Internet service providers.

The federal government has joined the ranks of the bottom-of-the-barrel industries, according to a new survey from the American Customer Satisfaction Index. Americans’ satisfaction level in dealing with federal agencies –everything from Treasury to Homeland Security — has fallen for a third consecutive year, reaching an eight-year low.

The declines represent some backsliding for the U.S. government, given that satisfaction saw some improvement in 2011 and 2012, which may have been the result of spending in the wake of the recession. While the comparison with private enterprise isn’t apples to apples given the nature of government services, the findings have some implications for bureaucrats.

“Satisfaction is linked to broader goals in the political system that it wants to maximize, like confidence and trust,” said Forrest Morgeson, director of research at the ACSI. “It’s much more difficult to govern if the entire population dislikes you.”

Although satisfaction is down for the federal government as a whole, the research found that consumers have vastly different views of specific agencies. The department that received the highest score was the Department of the Interior, which received a ranking of 75 points. That could reflect Americans’ positive feelings toward national parks, which many visit while on vacation, Morgeson noted.

The lowest-ranked department may not be much of a surprise to taxpayers: Treasury, which received a score of just 55 points, or 20 points below the Department of the Interior. Treasury, as a reminder, oversees the IRS.

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NJ County Chairmen on 2016’s Continuing Chaos: ‘People Are Fed Up’

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The message from the public has been clear this presidential cycle. Anti-establishment rhetoric has brought avowed socialist Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT) to an equal plane with Hillary Clinton, while Donald Trump has held onto a commanding twenty-point lead against his closest rival, Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX). Dissatisfaction with the Washington status quo has been the only common thread, and some of New Jersey’s most prominent party chairmen think that trend could continue when the primaries begin next month. JT Aregood, PolitickerNJ Read more

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Poll: Self-identified Dems, Republicans near record lows


January 11, 2016, 08:21 am
By Mark Hensch

The percentages of everyday Americans describing themselves as “Democrat” or “Republican” are near historic lows for both political parties, according to a new poll.

Roughly 29 percent of respondents in a Gallup survey released Monday identify as Democrats, marking the lowest point in 27 years. The previous low occurred in 2013, when 30 percent identified as Democrats.

Twenty six percent, meanwhile, defined themselves as Republicans in 2015. That is just 1 point above the party’s low of 25 percent in 2013, Gallup said.

About 4 in 10 U.S. adults now say they are political independents, pollsters found. Approximately 42 percent used that label in 2015, pollsters said.

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The Western Spring : The War on PC Culture



News that CAIR has demanded an apology from Donald Trump for evicting a Muslim protester at his rally and reports that left-wing protesters and police have turned out in force to bottle up “far-right” demonstrators in Germany bookend a single story.  It’s on — the long-awaited fight against PC orthodoxy is finally on. Trump is unlikely to apologize, and CAIR is even more unlikely to back down.  With 3 million Middle Eastern and African refugees due to arrive in Europe this year, the clashes between German protesters are only likely to intensify.

The commotion you hear is not going to stop, it will only get worse. The Western Spring is finally here, and before it’s done it threatens to change everything.

The tension between the forces of political correctness and the pent-up forces of repressed cultural traditions is now bursting like a spring wound up beyond containment.  Things may start slowly at first but ramp up rapidly, mirroring Cornelius Ryan’s famous description of the Berlin Philharmonic’s last performance as the Red Army stood at the gates of Berlin.

The drum beat was almost imperceptible. Softly the tubas answered. The muffled drum roll came again. Low and ominously the tubas replied. Then the massed basses came alive and the awesome grandeur of Die Götterdämmerung rolled out from the Berlin Philharmonic … it told of the evildoing of the gods, of Siegfried on his funeral bed of fire … with cymbals crashing and drums rolling, the orchestra thundered to its climax: the terrible holocaust that destroyed Valhalla

Actually the last performance of the doomed orchestra “was of Brünnhilde’s Immolation Scene at the end of the opera.” Ryan’s word painting may get the history wrong but nevertheless gets the analogy right.  It’s the twilight of the gods.  In 1945 the musicians wore escape clothes under their overcoats because it had been arranged for them to escape toward the American lines as soon as the performance ended.

Seventy years later, the question facing people caught in the middle is where to run. There is nowhere obvious. In Europe, Ross Douthat argues, all exits are temporarily blocked.  The left has destroyed the middle, leaving only a choice of extremes.  “Just last week Merkel rejected a proposal to cap refugee admissions (which topped one million last year) at 200,000 in 2016.”

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The Larger, but Quieter Than Bundy, Push to Take Over Federal Land

Bundy Ranch


DENVER — Ken Ivory, a Republican state representative from Utah, has been roaming the West with an alluring pitch to cattle ranchers, farmers and conservatives upset with how Washington controls the wide-open public spaces out here: This land is your land, he says, and not the federal government’s.

Mr. Ivory, a bespectacled business lawyer from suburban Salt Lake City, does not fit the profile of a sun-scoured sagebrush rebel. But he is part of a growing Republican-led movement pushing the federal government to hand over to the states millions of acres of Western public lands — as well as their rich stores of coal, timber and grazing grass.

“It’s like having your hands on the lever of a modern-day Louisiana Purchase,” said Mr. Ivory, who founded the American Lands Council and until recently was its president. The Utah-based group is funded mostly by donations from county governments, but has received support from Americans for Prosperity, the group backed by the billionaire Koch brothers.

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Revolutions are Messy : Elites and media really hate Donald Trump’s voters

trump trumpkins

By Michael Walsh

December 26, 2015 | 2:55pm

To hear the patronizing wise men of the Republican Party tell it, anyone who would vote for Donald Trump for president must be deranged. “Trumpkins,” they call them, mental midgets and xenophobic troglodytes who’ve crawled out from their survivalist caves in order to destroy the Beltway Establishment.

How their resentful attitude galls the crack cadres of campaign consultants who brought conservatives halfhearted standard-bearers like John McCain and Mitt Romney to do sham battle against Barack Obama in 2008 and ’12, then return to the safety of the US Senate and a beachfront mansion in La Jolla.

The peasants are revolting!

And all on behalf of a bloviating billionaire whose conservatism and party loyalty are suspect.

Now, after months of whistling past the graveyard of Trump’s seemingly inexorable rise and assuring themselves that his candidacy will collapse as voters come to their senses, a CNN poll released Wednesday showing Trump now lapping the field has the GOP establishment in full meltdown mode. The survey shows Trump with nearly 40% of the primary vote, trailed by Ted Cruz at 18%, Ben Carson and Marco Rubio tied at 10%, and the also-rans (including great GOP hope Jeb Bush) limping along far behind.

Their panic was best articulated last week in The Daily Beast by GOP consultant Rick Wilson, who wrote that Trump supporters “put the entire conservative movement at risk of being hijacked and destroyed by a bellowing billionaire with poor impulse control and a profoundly superficial understanding of the world . . . walking, talking comments sections of the fever swamp sites.

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‘America is a bomb waiting to explode’


Sam Gerrans is an English writer, translator, support counselor and activist. He also has professional backgrounds in media, strategic communications and technology. He is driven by commitment to ultimate meaning, and focused on authentic approaches to revelation and realpolitik. He is the founder of – where the Qur’an is explored on the basis of reason rather than tradition – and offers both individual language training and personal support and counseling online at
Published time: 18 Oct, 2015 10:27

The United States is in decline. While not all major shocks to the system will be devastating, when the right one comes along, the outcome may be dramatic.

Not all explosives are the same. We all know you have to be careful with dynamite. Best to handle it gently and not smoke while you’re around it.

Semtex is different. You can drop it. You can throw it. You can put it in the fire. Nothing will happen. Nothing until you put the right detonator in it, that is.

To me, the US – and most of the supposedly free West – increasingly looks like a truck being systematically filled with Semtex.

But it’s easy to counter cries of alarm with the fact that the truck is stable – because it’s true: you can hurl more boxes into the back without any real danger. Absent the right detonator, it is no more dangerous than a truckload of mayonnaise.

But add the right detonator and you’re just one click away from complete devastation.

We can see how fragile the U.S. is now by considering just four tendencies.

1. Destruction of farms and reliable food source

The average American is a long way from food when the shops are closed.

The Washington Post reports that the number of farms in the country has fallen by some 4 million from more than 6 million in 1935 to roughly 2 million in 2012.

And according to the College of Agriculture & Life Sciences, only about 2 percent of the US population live on farms.

That means that around 4.6 million people currently have the means to feed themselves.

Food supply logistics are extended, sometimes stretching thousands of miles. The shops have nothing more than a few days’ stock. A simple break in that supply line would clear the shops out in days.

2. Weak economic system

The American economic system is little more than froth.

The US currency came off the gold standard in 1933 and severed any link with gold in 1971. Since then, the currency has been essentially linked to oil, the value of which has been protected and held together by wars.

The whole world has had enough of the US and its hubris – not least the people of the US themselves, which the massive support currently for Putin’s decision to deal with ISIS demonstrates.

Since pro-active war is what keeps the US going, if it loses the monopoly on that front, its decline is inevitable.

Fiat economies always collapse. They last on average for 37 years. By that metric the US should have already run out of gas.

Once people wake up and smell the Yuan, the Exodus out of the dollar will be unstoppable.

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America is due for a revolution

storm the bastille

By Michael Goodwin

October 17, 2015 | 10:52pm

Here’s the good news: The chaos and upheaval we see all around us have historical precedents and yet America survived. The bad news: Everything likely will get worse before it gets better again.

That’s my chief takeaway from “Shattered Consensus,”a meticulously argued analysis of the growing disorder. Author James Piereson persuasively makes the case there is an inevitable “revolution” coming because our politics, culture, education, economics and even philanthropy are so polarized that the country can no longer resolve its differences.

To my knowledge, no current book makes more sense about the great unraveling we see in each day’s headlines. Piereson captures and explains the alienation arising from the sense that something important in American life is ending, but that nothing better has emerged to replace it.

The impact is not restricted by our borders. Growing global conflict is related to America’s failure to agree on how we should govern ourselves and relate to the world.

Piereson describes the endgame this way: “The problems will mount to a point of crisis where either they will be addressed through a ‘fourth revolution’ or the polity will begin to disintegrate for lack of fundamental agreement.”

He identifies two previous eras where a general consensus prevailed, and collapsed. Each lasted about as long as an individual’s lifetime, was dominated by a single political party and ended dramatically.

First came the era that stretched from 1800 until slavery and sectionalism led to the Civil War. The second consensus, which he calls the capitalist-industrial era, lasted from the end of the Civil War until the Great Depression.

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Revolution: “I’m not too concerned about the thoughts and opinions of opinion writers in newspapers these days. I’m worried about the opinion of our grassroots, our voters, our activists, those who are watching us”…

storm the bastille

 storm the Bastille

“I’m not too concerned about the thoughts and opinions of opinion writers in newspapers these days. I’m worried about the opinion of our grassroots, our voters, our activists, those who are watching us,  Sean Spicer, top strategist for the Republican National Committee (RNC)

Top GOP strategist: House leadership turmoil ‘a good thing’

By Mike Lillis

A leader of the GOP’s campaign arm is defending the current upheaval among House Republicans, saying the turbulent search to replace outgoing Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) will ultimately benefit the party.

“There’s a lot of discussion going on as far as the direction, the vision that our party wants to go and who [is] the best person to lead it. You’ve seen it both in the presidential cycle, in terms of the number of candidates that we have up there and the competition that’s going on, and frankly now you’re seeing it in the House,” Sean Spicer, top strategist for the Republican National Committee (RNC), told CNN Saturday.

“I believe this is a good thing. It’s good for the party to go through these discussions, to have different people put their ideas and their vision out there, and for the best person to win.”

Spicer acknowledged that picking leaders is “not always the prettiest” process, but he rejected the notion that the party is at war with itself and dismissed the charges of Republican “chaos”and “dysfunction” as fantasies of the media.

“I’m not too concerned about the thoughts and opinions of opinion writers in newspapers these days. I’m worried about the opinion of our grassroots, our voters, our activists, those who are watching us,” Spicer said.

He noted that a string of recent victories have given Republicans control over most state houses across the country, and he highlighted the fact that the GOP’s House majority is the largest since the Hoover administration.

“So, as a party, we’re doing pretty well when you look at the actual number [of] wins that we’re getting,” Spicer said.


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Top GOP official seeks McConnell ouster as Senate leader


‘GOP brand is being damaged,’ RNC vice chair says

By Ralph Z. Hallow – The Washington Times – Sunday, September 27, 2015

With John Boehner now departing as House speaker, an influential Republican Party official is now seeking the ouster of another GOP leader who has frustrated conservatives: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

“McConnell needs to resign!!” Louisiana GOP Chairman Roger Villere wrote in a Facebook posting.

Mr. Villere isn’t just any Republican. He’s the longest-serving state GOP chairman in the nation, with 12 years on the job, and is the vice chairman of the Republican National Committee, the GOP’s national governing body. He also serves on the RNC’s executive committee that makes decisions alongside Chairman Reince Priebus.

“Mitch is a good and honorable guy, but the base is leaving our party,” Mr. Villere said in an interview with The Washington Times. “I’m out in the field all the time and we have all our elections this year for state offices, and it’s hurting us tremendously with our elections.”

Aides for Mr. McConnell, Kentucky Republican, did not return repeated calls and emails seeking comment. A spokeswoman for Mr. Priebus said he was unavailable Sunday.