As an observer from the UK, i’m saddened and amazed to think any sentient journo could credit Biden with anything, when its perfectly obvious he barely knows what day it is. Whoever is pulling his strings would be a great revelatory piece of journalism. Where is it?
I used to read Sullivan’s column about the US in the Sunday Times and considered his opinions of value. In this piece, his portrayal of the self-inflicted wounds of the US is stark enough but his attempt to describe how he’s willing to vote Republican only by holding his nose shows how captured he himself is by the nonsense that now passes for critical journalism.
Once Andrew became starstuck with that ghastly fake Obama, he’d lost it. Not my definition of ‘conservative’ Mr Sullivan.
Exactly – Sullivan is NO conservative. He seems to use his ‘I sometimes have a conservative thought’ to market his brand.
Why does it matter if he isn’t a conservative? Does that disqualify him from writing for Unherd?
You have to read Sullivan’s substack – he’s constantly saying he’s a conservative but he’s not . There’s a certain ‘dishonesty’ or lack of self-awareness. He so much wants to be accepted by both camps but in the end a lot of his thinking comes across as ‘muddy’.
Sullivan never considered himself conservative. He was always a liberal/left of the middle.
Exactly. I thought it was a very good, honest article. I thought UnHerd was about trying to avoid the echo chamber?!…
No-one is seeking an echo chamber. The comments have been valid, rational (in the main!) and without vitriol.
The “echo chamber” accusation is itself becoming quite tiresome. It’s certainly not justified here.
If it’s not justified here why is everyone laying into Sullivan for not being conservative enough? I thought it was an honest attempt to grapple with the madness and more power to him for doing so. But why pay attention to the article when you can just dismiss him?
The article may be an honest attempt, yet Andrew is rigging his argument by ignoring the Democrat Party’s own Election Denying history. This may be evidence of cognitive dissonance for Andrew.
The Wall Street Journal published a good article (before the 2020 election) with evidence laying out the case that since 1968 Democrats have never accepted election results in which they lost unless it was a 49 state landslide for Republicans. I don’t know if I can include links so I’ll just add the article details below that folks can look up themselves if interested. I will say in closing that I expect Election Denying will become fashionable in Democrat circles starting November 9…Hillary Clinton has already started the election-denying ball rolling over the past few weeks.
WSJ Title: “Will Democrats Accept Another Trump Victory?”
Subtitle: “Every time they’ve lost since 1968, they’ve called it illegitimate—except for the 49-state landslides.”
Published: July 10, 2020
Exactly. Election denial isn’t limited to the right side of the aisle. HRC and the Dems pretty much did it from 2016 to 2020, and ginned up the whole fake “Russian collusion” narrative to bolster it.
I’m beyond tired of so-called “journalists” labeling anyone who raises legitimate concerns about US election integrity these days as “election deniers” and “white supremacists,” as well as “extremely extreme right wingers.” My wife pointed out to me that even in blue WA state, our ballots and voters’ pamphlet state that one MUST be a US citizen and a legal resident of our state to vote. But I’m sure that if one advocated either of these, s/he will be excoriated as a racist, extremely extreme right wing threat to democracy.
Journalism died some time ago in the US. Badly educated trust fund babies burdened with white guilt and looking for unrenumerative but interesting careers now staff what is called the prestige legacy press, the NYT, WaPo, Atlantic Monthly, the alphabet network news rooms, etc. Look to the to the oceans for the ashes of journalism.
Jeez fair enough that you pick up on the one point about election rigging but after his comprehensive demolition of the Democrats it makes your accusation of the article being ‘rigged’ seem quite disproportionate.
I’m reading mainly comments that’ve paid attention to the article, and not just dismissed him. I certainly didn’t, and it was to my comment that you replied. It’s a basic question of comprehension!
Ad hominem insults on the commenter now? And you think that’s not echo chamber behaviour?
Because its easier to dismiss people you don’t agree with than to consider and analyse their views.
Steve you diminished the debate as soon as you stated this: “i’m saddened and amazed to think any sentient journo could credit Biden with anything, when its perfectly obvious he barely knows what day it is.”
But you’ll get plaudits for this depth of ‘nuanced’ comment from others who enjoy such ‘insights’. So yes your comment is merely intended to initiate an echo chamber debate.
The main point of the article, that a Democrat leaning journalist is prepared to vote Republican, makes it worthy of Unherd, and worthy of an analysis by Unherd readers.
The articles are not echo-chamber, but the commenters often are – particularly when American politics are under discussion.
Unherd needs to review its list of contributors.
Bingo! The echo chamber lives!
It’s as important to hear from the wayward as it is the clarion calls.
Spot on Jeff – there are many here in the comments who just want to hear from their own side, and forcefully reject alternative views because, I think, they’re too frightened to engage their brains. It’s ironic that Steve thinks Biden lacks sentience!
Why would anyone who isn’t a Putin fan-boy want to vote Republican?
Why would anyone vote for a party where the majority of its candidates refuse to say they will accept the result of the ballot?
More generally, democracy is on the way out. I grew up in a polity where left and right often disagreed, but ultimately worked with each other.
Now, they hate each other, as the comments on these pages bear out.
Americans approve more highly of foreigners than they do of their so-called “fellow Americans” who happen to vote the other way.
That’s no longer a country.
You cannot have a functioning democracy with current levels of extreme polarisation, contempt and hatred.
America is headed for a low-level civil war in the next 10-15 years, and we will not see any sane politics from any side until that blood-letting has occurred.
You cannot have a functioning democracy with current levels of extreme polarisation, contempt and hatred. Why would anyone who isn’t a Putin fan-boy want to vote Republican?
You cannot have a functioning democracy with current levels of extreme polarisation, contempt and hatred.
Why would anyone who isn’t a Putin fan-boy want to vote Republican?
Why? Perhaps because they are horrified at the way children are being railroaded into doing irreparable damage to their own bodies? Perhaps because they don’t want their children being taught to see every setback as evidence of racism or being taught that they are themselves racist solely on account of the colour of their skin? Perhaps because they object to seeing felons walk free even as crime rates are soaring? Perhaps because celebrating abortion makes them sick to their stomach? Perhaps because they are fed up with being smeared as semi-fascists, deplorables, and people who “do not understand”?
Sullivan’s tipping point is Trump. Mine is the transgender lunacy that is destroying so many thousands of children and their families. That’s why Starmer won’t get my vote either.
Precisely. How can I trust any political party that can’t tell the difference between a man and woman? If they can’t even get that simple fact straight what are they going to be like about more complex issues such as economic or foreign policy?
Well put about tipping points. The Democrats thought the Supreme Court ruling on abortion is a tipping point, and it isn’t. But, like you, I’m very concerned about the trans rights activism crushing women’s rights.
So in tipping point terms, it’s obvious that the denial of the existence of women and their rights ‘trumps’ the denial of womens access to abortion. Which is rather ironic given Trumps ‘feelings about pussies’.
“Why would anyone vote for a party where the majority of its candidates refuse to say they will accept the result of the ballot?
Both parties are saying this, wasn’t Hillary just in the news saying that if Dems lose, elections were stolen? Furthermore, as an UnHerd reader, you should know by now that the WaPo is not a source of objective reporting.
The key to this argument is the use of the WAPO as a source. Use as T.P. or fishwrap perhaps but not the truth.
I jogged back to listen to a speech of Biden upon becoming president elect where he emphasised how he intended to bring the country together and that he had built a broad coalition including Republicans. As a UK conservative it all sounded quite positive. I had the impression that Biden had maintained good contacts with Republicans to pass legislation in the past and so assumed he would sideline the extreme left of his party to bring the country together. I was certainly fooled as he seems to have doubled down on the most divisive policies of his authoritarian left wing supporters. Far from seeking to unite he has sought to divide so that a leftist democrat like Sullivan can’t stomach voting Democrat again in the election.
Your bizarre response is to pose the question: Why would anyone who isn’t a Putin fan boy want to vote Republican? And yet you seem to deplore the very polarisation that you embody in your question. Trump may be a vulgarian of limited intellectual tastes but he is surly right to wish to halt the ill controlled immigration from Mexico and his economic policies seem to have been more beneficial for black employment than the racist driven positive discrimination policies of the Democrats. Have the Republicans proposed invading a neighbouring country or imprisoning their political opponents like Putin? If not why pose the inflammatory question and then pretend you care about polarisation when you embody that polarisation? There is nothing moderate that you seem to contribute to the debate.
Who paid you to write this god-awful screed? Furthermore, let’s be honest about what you’re saying. If you’re a republican, then you’re a Putin fanboy. Please explain that logic. Also, when you have serious and egregious discrepancies in vote counting across various states with abundant video anecdotal evidence of ballot stuffing outside of vote boxes and numerous ballot recounts inside ballot counting centers in various states, then how can you vote for a party that dares question these actual events as a function of the final ballot count? It’s a ridiculous supposition.
The US is not a democracy. It never has been. It’s a constitutional representative republic. Left and right always disagreed? Why? Well, the left would always come up with moronic ideas of public policies that had little to no merit, claim they have value and the right would have to spend time dismantling them. Only to see the left infiltrate, through the long game, public education and the university system to churn out two successive generations of radical Marxist SJW’s as their useful idiot tools as a bulwark against the right. The left is always promoting insane ideas and we see the fruits of that today. From CRT to Gender Identity nonsense, the left is constantly trying to redefine society for the worse.
Leftist ideology is weaponized societal cancer. It is corrosive, divisive, demoralizing, depressing, and downright degenerate. Why would anyone vote for an ideology that seeks the worst in humanity, then try to elevate them to their best? The right wins on that front every tie. The left seeks to subjugate the human spirit to an all-powerful government. The right seeks to elevate humans to be free in their self-determination and minimize the power of government to its base powers. To be the champion of people’s rights, not see their rights as a negative consequence of their ability to govern its citizens. That’s what the right in the US fights for. The left has no place in American society. None.
Civil war? Hardly. And remember, the violent left has been in ascension from attempted political assassinations to subversive domestic terrorism via Antifa/BLM and then projects this nonsense on the right. You and your ilk made this mess, we will have to fix it.
Biden is a confused old man, and if he weren’t in the highest executive office of the United States, he ought to be pitied. The bigger question, and one that I have not yet seen addressed, is why he agreed to this shift to the left? Is it opportunism to hold on to power? Genuine conviction? Or is he being manipulated by others? Considering his frequent bouts of confusion, to put it nicely, the last option seems to be the most probable one, but that then begs the question of who is pulling the strings? Every puppet needs a master.
One explanation for Biden’s shift to the left is the number of young(er) staffers with very left-of-centre convictions that feed him information and influence his perception of the world. As we know, it’s not just about what information is presented or not, but also how it is presented. But who put these staffers in their positions? Biden? Political Action Committees? Did Biden’s campaign team simply pander to the extreme left to hoist him into the highest office? The extreme left are a minority in the country, a well-known fact to both parties and critical observers, and I don’t believe for a second that they did not see the alienation and disenchantment of the centrists and swing voters coming.
When you really look closely, a lot of things don’t add up. Perhaps I am simply trying to find something that isn’t there, rationality and logical thought in ideological chaos, but I am deeply disturbed by what I perceive as serious incongruities.
Yes, where are the investigative and revelatory articles about the people behind the scenes?
The main reason for the shift is that he embodies the worst attributes of a politician, and always has for his 50 years of public enrichment service. He has been proven to be a pathological liar and plagiarist. He is a rudderless boat in a sea of money driven wind. The most pathetic form of man.
Everything you say about Biden is correct. The saddest part of all is that The DP put him up as candidate because he was the very best they had! Against Trump !!
So you’re wavering about his qualities then?
Weekend at Bernie’s (1989) springs to mind…See who’s pulling the levers…
Thank you for that tip. I had never heard of it, but found and shall watch it online.
P.S. I just watched it. Point taken. I also laughed so hard that tears were running down my face. The scene where Bernie washes up next to Richard and his date, and then the boating scene with the channel markers…
The press is an integral part of the left with a lot to hide. Look at the Paul Pelosi incident for the latest instance. Do you have another question?
If nothing else in his 50 year political career, Biden is an opportunist.
Sullivan exemplifies what Phil Ochs described as a “liberal”: in good times, ten percent to the left, in bad times ten precent to the right. In Sullivan’s case, go far right. He is a narcissistic no talent hack.
Your first sentence, jm, intelligently illuminates the point he is trying to make; that is, 10% of the voting population (identified as ‘liberal’) is at stake – a massive number no doubt.
I would suggest that the situation is not so very dissimilar in the UK, vis-a-vis Conservative or Labour voters, and the “fall of the Red Wall” in 2019 illustrates that point.
Although, your last two sentences mar what is otherwise a good comment – they do, however, make Sullivan’s case for him; high-minded invective simply alienates people.
Yeah unfortunately he undermines his points by engaging in a personal attack. No doubt some people think Sullivan might be an ok writer, but John can’t contemplate that possibility.
You need to change your glasses or what you read. Three-quarters of Americans in a recent Gallup Poll said they regarded the left-wing news media is a threat to democracy.
“David Brooks wrote last week: “Over the past few years, the Democrats have made heroic efforts to win back working-class voters and white as well as Black and Hispanic voters who have drifted rightward.”
David Brooks capitalises “black” while not capitalising “white”. What a vile, disgusting, woke racist.
Would you rather he capitalised “white” or left them both lower-case? Me, I dislike the capitalisation, but would feel it silly not to capitalise “Hispanic”, because the latter has its roots in historic proper nouns. The argument for capitalised “Black” is that black Americans constitute a sort of nation, forged by the common historical experience of slavery. It’s activist grammar, and I instinctively recoil from it, but it’s not entirely wrong, is it (although obviously it misses out more recent immigrants from the Caribbean and especially Africa)? It may be an inaccurate, unhelpful distinction to say that black Americans are a nation (capitalised) whereas white Americans are a heterogeneous rag-bag of national groups (not capitalised, although obviously you’d capitalise “Irish-American”, “Italian-American,” etc), but it’s hardly “disgusting” or “racist” is it?
I wasn’t aware that all black people came from the same nation. On the map, Africa looks like a pretty big continent with many countries. Several times larger than Europe. You know, that “rag-bag of national groups”?
I think that capitalization works in US but when it’s done in UK to refer to first generation economic migrants from Africa it becomes completely absurd yet of course no one in Guardian land would dare to make the distinction.
It is racist (because if it were the other way around, it certainly would be). It’s also illogical and even worse, from an editor’s point of view, inconsistent. As a former editor, I do find it quite disgusting. Not to mention stupid.
Richard – woke racist is enough, most of us can fill in any extra words required.
I used to read and enjoy Brooks’ writing years ago, but somewhere along the way he lost it. He was a ‘waffling conservative’ but now he just seems confused. It’s hard to write in NYC and be honest if you want to remain in the ‘club’.
Sullivan, Brooks, and most others of their ilk have lived in NYC and other blue bubbles for way too long. There’s a lot of USA beyond the blue slivers on each coast (the “Clinton Archipelago”).
Capitalizing ‘Black’ has become obligatory in Leftistland, where Brooks lives.
I imagine it is an insecurity thing. Black people apparently have higher levels of oestrogen.
Sullivan’s opening here perfectly encapsulates the way that the reality of American politics has become the polar opposite of what the rhetoric claims.
The left trumpets anti-racism whilst doing everything it possibly can to degrade the lives of black people, it parrots support for small business whilst its billionaire backers actually employ criminals to smash up small businesses, it lauds family values whilst its teachers devote themselves to sexualising and physically abusing the children in their charge, it claims to be the voice of the blue collar class whilst driving down wages and pushing poor people out of the housing market.
The terrifying thing for us in the UK is the enthusiasm with which the Labour Party is emulating the US Democrats in employing progressive rhetoric whilst promoting the interests of a rapacious elite.
Mr. Sullivan you should also vote for at least one Libertarian in DC, me, Bruce Majors, running to represent him in Congress.
Especially since I often compliment him on his writing at the local diner.
“There was no choice in 2020, given Trump.”
Andy….it’s the same choice, and if the last two years have not convinced you that no amount of mean tweets were worth what we’ve been through, you might as well run for Senate in Pennsylvania.
This kind of Trump Derangement Syndrome is exactly why the left has gone so insane. They wrote a blank check for the left to adopt anything Trump disagreed with.
Yup. If they hadn’t over reacted we’d still have some politics in the middle. Trump and the Democrats both stood on the end of the seesaw.
You’re not only an idiot for enabling the leftist cabal that propped up the dementia ridden fool in the first place, but a dangerous one because you’d do it again in 2024.
This article hits the nail on the head of many of the issues that afflict America today and accurately identifies many of the issues of the Biden presidency.
However, I must take issue with the use of the phrase “election deniers”. This is not an attempt to defend the conduct of those involved in J6, or of Donald Trump – it is simply a statement of fact that many of the aspects of the 2020 election were unusual, unprecedented and unexplained.
I should know – I managed to make myself a healthy packet by betting on these irregularities. In the run up to the election I bet on the election being closer than most pundits expected, which meant most of the value was on the R side. However, I bet more heavily on R when the state election laws were tight, such as Florida, and on D when the laws were loose and heavily watered down due to Covid, such as Pennsylvania. I bet mostly on Rs in the bellwether districts.
And then – when voting had – in an unprecedented manner – been shut down overnight and it looked all but certain that Trump had done it, I piled as much cash as I could on Biden at ridiculously generous odds, and bet heavily on the Ds overturning their deficits in each of Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Georgia and Arizona. History will tell you I won handsomely.
None of this is to say that the election was fraudulent. Mail in ballots tend to be counted later (I’m not sure why but they are) and they tend to favour Ds. I’m not denying for a second that there could be a straightforward, uncontroversial explanation for the results.
But there is no proof of such, and when I see that the D side has resisted every attempt to bring any cases to court, I have to ask myself “why?”. Add to this in one of the very few, if not only, districts where an election audit was carried out, we see that there were issues (mostly chain of custody) with many times the number of ballots needed to change the result. Something that got buried by the press.
Meanwhile there are massive numbers of questions, which raise from statistical anomalies (how did Trump win 19 of the 20 most accurate Bellwether Districts but lose overall) to events on the night (why were R observers thrown out of counts? Why were windows boarded up with newspaper to stop people observing? What happened with the flood at the Atlanta count?), to the big questions.
1. Why did the vote counting stop when it did, breaking entirely with tradition, and more importantly,
2. Why, if the Ds are so concerned with election integrity, have they fought tooth and nail to prevent any detailed audit of what actually happened?
Poll after poll shows that large proportions of Americans are concerned with election integrity – I’m afraid dismissing these concerns as “election denial” whilst simultaneously refusing to test these claims in court just won’t wash.
Very interesting. Thank you. I have read/heard/known all of this, but have never seen it brought together in such a coherent manner. I remember reading that the Public Interest Legal Foundation won a settlement against Pennsylvania, which led to the removal of more than 20,000 dead registrants from the voter rolls in April 2021. “PILF’s data revealed that 9,212 of these deceased registrants had been dead for at least five years, 1,990 had been dead for at least ten years, and 197 had been dead for at least twenty years. In addition, hundreds of these registrants showed post-death voting credits for the 2016 and/or 2018 elections.” (Source: PILF website)
Several fact-checking sites which haven’t been updated since November 2020 still claim this information to be false. I am not in a position to verify or discredit the numbers PILF presents, but I agree with you that it all looks dubious. People who have nothing to hide, do not need to fear the truth.
You might consider reading the book “Rigged” by Mollie Hemingway, who writes for The Federalist. She goes over the 2020 voting irregularities in detail.
On another thread and another publication one commenter references the Chartists and their insistence on the SECRET ballot. Mail in, drop box, neither are secret.
Who might be in the room, the commenter asks, while the mail in vote is written. Then goes off on a tangent, asking if it might be the local drug dealer or some lowlife.
But the person most likely to be in the room when the vote is filled in will be the political operative who has solicited that vote and in some cases just registered the voter, The person that used to be called a ‘ward healer’.
Most of the voter registration drives have been undertaken in recent decades by the Democrats. And have produced diminishing returns over the years as more of the newly registered don’t show up to vote on election day., So the mail-in voter’s companion is most likely to be a Democrat operative who will ensure that the vote is properly filled in and posted.
Another privacy question over mail-in voting is this. Who is NOT in the room when the voting forms are filled in?
Absent will be other members of the household who may have left signed forms (or not) but whose forms may be completed and posted by the voter who is present with the help of the operative.
Do these theories go some way to explaining how the mail-in votes tend so strongly to the Democrats? Are they, perhaps, more plausible and more human than the nightmares about voting machines?
Not my country old boy, and we have problems of our own, but given that your choice was between Donald Trump and a senile old man with a plastic paddy complex then I suggest that, perhaps, you made the wrong call, unpalatable as it may have seemed.
We can lend you Boris if you are short of candidates – He can burble nonsense in Latin as well as in English.
And was born in the US. One step nearer to being World King?
And French, apparently.
It is my country and Donald Trump was definitely the better choice. Everything in the country was better other than the fragile psyches of the woke left under Trump, and even that was almost entirely due to MSM milking all his asinine comments to stir up outrage non-stop. I don’t like him either but he was definitely a better choice than whatever puppet the DNC put forth.
“The party of Obama” was a sparkly unicorn myth created by media lackeys like yourself, Andrew. And absolutely nothing DJT did – energy independence, border control, booming economy, return of manufacturing, stopping Obama’s insane nuke deal with Iran, no foreign wars, curbing uneven trade deals with China – would ever be acknowledged by your ilk as anything other than a crime against humanity. You all hated him because the cool kids in your 8th Grader tribe said “kill Piggy”. Well, this disastrous sham of an administration is on you, so no Emily Oster-style amnesty will be given no matter who you vote for.
Nailed it Allison.
I am no political pundit, but one thing I was taught a long time ago was that ‘policies not personalities’ were what actually mattered. Like him or loathe him, Trump’s policies were good ones that served the American people.
Now look what you’ve got – a country run into the ground by a bunch of lunatics – all cheered on by the likes of Sullivan and his ‘progressive’ coastal elite pals….
A Never-Trumper lists the vast list of total Anti-American policies destroying the Nation, and the West, and then says he would vote for more it it kept Trump out of office.
This is not Politics, this is a Cult drinking the Kool-Aid and killing themselves because the insanity has captured them to their core.
Trump is the Greatest President in out lifetimes. The Democrats stole the 2020 election by criminal acts. Biden is head of the Biden Family, and is owned by china who have the dirt on him. The Democrat Party are out to destroy USA and the West to bring about the Great Reset. Covid was a military weapon and it was an engineered ‘Plandemic’ to bring in Social Credit Scores and wreck the economy of the workers, and double the Globalists super wealthy power and wealth. The USA giving total real time Military Intelligence, and $80 Billion to Ukraine is to destroy Europe by the energy stranglehold Russia has on them, and to push all the resourced producing nations, with Russia and China into a Axis Power for the WEF’s plan to bring about The Great Reset.
If MAGA in 2022, and Trump in 2024 fail to win a hell will take the world in a 1984 nightmare.
Vote Democrat if you wish to be enslaved in the New World Order.
Just look what TDS did to Sam Harris.
And very entertaining it was!
All utter crap. Enough said
But it isn’t enough is it? If something is indeed “crap” then you need to explain why. This is an adult forum for adults, so try and fit in.
I still hope that the Republican choice will be DeSantis instead of Trump. He will get huge numbers of Independents and moderate Democratic voters. Once the US will get back to sanity, I hope the rest of Europe will follow.
I’d vote for Trump again and was generally happy with him until he rolled over for the covid hysteria, but Desantis is a much better choice.
much much better.
The fact that you don’t see that you’re the same as the extreme lefties is honestly hilarious to me.
Thank you Rachel – the hypocrisy is stunning. Someone actually described this thread as a forum for adults – but it is an echo-chamber, a circle-jerk. Every trick of modern newspeak, cheap rhetoric, and primitive psychological defence is on display – and then projected onto the ‘other’. I’ve loved living in and visiting the States, and it saddens me that such things are happening.
He does have a point about a “Cult drinking the Kool-Aid and killing themselves because the insanity has captured them to their core“.
I do believe the collective hissy fit thrown by our commentariat and the entrenched political class since 2016 is a new phenomenon. And it has entirely transformed the once decent, social-democratic Left in the US. The TDS is apparently terminal. And the irrationality & conspiracy theories persist to this day: Trump was a Russian agent; the Hunter Biden laptop was “Russian disinformation”; and more recently Trump hid nuclear codes in his wife’s underwear at Mar-a-Lago. All relayed to us by highly qualified – and highly paid – people in the corporate media. Seriously … !
…and now, FFS (for fairness sake), list the ridiculous things Republicans have said……
No doubt R’s have many ridiculous statements. The difference is that the Donkeys statements are either trumpeted as truth in the MSM or are hidden away when they are too odious to see the light of day.
So nearly 50 people upvoted that hysterical, conspiracist garbage? And just in case anyone asks, I supported Trump in 2020 and the GOP now (despite some of their extremely questionable candidates, esp. MTG, Herschel Walker and that fool in Wisconsin who said the GOP would never lose another election there).
I see that the left has succeeded in painting everyone who does not agree with them as dangerous, cult-like election deniers. This is propaganda 101. Unbelievable.
Indeed. Labelling opponents “deniers” has been the tactic for some time now.
And the “-denier” suffix is multi-functional – for example ‘covid-”, ‘climate-change’. Of course the intention is to suggest that the holder of such a label is completely beyond the pale, like those who claim the Holocaust never occurred. All you need to smear someone permanently is a pliant corporate media and endless repetition, as Joeseph Goebbels understood last century, and Vladimir Putin understands today.
However, as occurred with other derogatory labels such as “deplorables” and “conspiracy theorist”, the problem with “denier” labels is that they are overused to the point that they become meaningless, and the labellers are no longer taken seriously by the broader public. This is one of the main reasons the corporate media now have such a low standing amongst the population at large.
Still, “cult-like election deniers” do exist. There were a whole lot of them back in 2016, the most insistent being the losing candidate. Funny how that has all been memory-holed!
They are a religious cult.
And in the King James Bible the verb is “you will deny me three times.”
Near perfect article. And I suspect this sentiment is shared right across mainstream America.
With you on the sentiment. Not the near perfection!
Interestingly several media outlets are ‘fact checking’ the things that Biden says so perhaps they see the way the wind is blowing. Musk Derangement Syndrome has started. Andrew Sullivan clearly sees the risk of a totalizating Big Brother government.
Perhaps the USA needs a Hero to roll back the nonsense? In which case even Trump might be necessary. He’s not a pleasant man, but then Heroes seldom are.
What about “The Gentleman”? He was a pleasant hero, wasn’t he?
Fictional heroes are ones who have been produced through the hero narrative, and therefore suspect.
I’d offer in return Winston Churchill. A man of many strengths and weaknesses. He successfully led Britain through WW II, even though he suffered bouts of depression and drinking. He was an Imperialist and racist (by today’s standards). He had strong political views which were at odds with the sentiment of the time.
And yet most people regard him as a hero – he received a State funeral after all.
But we don’t need Trump when the GOP has more palatable candidates. Particularly Ron DeSantis, who, of course, was attacked by Trump in a speech the other day as ‘Ron Desanctimonious’. And why would Trump do this right before the midterms? Because for Trump it is all about Trump and not anything else.
Absolutely true. .
Trump has served his purpose and created a viable alternative to the Globalists, both Democrats and Republicans, who currently run our country.
An egomaniac of his caliber was necessary to plant this seed but his job is done and it’s time to turn to more likeable cadidates like DeSantis and Lake who I belive will make a great team in 2024
I would have thought the million $ question is ‘would Mr Putin have executed his Ukrainian adventure had Mr Trump been in the White House’?
I can’t say I’m sympathetic to this writer. I voted Trump knowing this was going to happen. Unfortunately, many Americans were blinded by the media-hatred for Trump and voted for the other man.
You got what you voted for, I’m afraid, and now we’re all paying the price.
It’s hard to be with ordinary people, isn’t it? It is much more pleasant to consider them deplorable, no matter what nonsense the elite carries.
Like so many moderates, Mr. Sullivan refuses to understand that all that he lists below is exactly why Mr. Trump was necessary. No one else was willing to stand up to these Bolsheviks.
“…the entire far-Left agenda: the biggest expansion in government since LBJ; a massive stimulus that, in a period of supply constraints, fueled durable inflation; a second welfare stimulus was also planned — which would have made inflation even worse; record rates of mass migration, and no end in sight; a policy of almost no legal restrictions on abortion (with public funding as well!); the replacement of biological sex with postmodern “genders”; the imposition of critical race theory in high schools and critical queer theory in kindergarten; an attack on welfare reform; “equity” hiring across the federal government; plans to regulate media “disinformation”; fast-track sex-changes for minors; next-to-no due process in college sex-harassment proceedings; and on and on it went…”
Yes, this. I’m not even an American by birth. I emigrated here seven years ago, but within a few months of arrival I realized something was horribly wrong with the Democrat party.
Duh….where have you been these last two years, Andrew?
Once you’d got over your absurd infatuation for Obama, and your lazy, conformist TDS, at last you have seen sense. well, AREN’T the Republicans going to be honoured with your vote…
oh, and there was never anything ‘moderate’ about Obama. A thoroughly nasty piece of work.
“thoroughly nasty” – explain and justify – enough of the uncorroborated cheap shots
Obama just gave a speech predicting that the Red Wave today would mean journalists in prison and censorship of the media.
But under Biden and Obama we saw Project Veritas and True the Vote journalists and researchers in prison and spying on both James Rosen and James Risen (and no doubt other journalists) and the FBI censoring social media and the IRS and DOJ attacking political opponents.
I was so happy to see public heckling of Obama has begun. The man should end up going down in history as scum.
Ha! You voted for this remember? Well now its time to lay in your bed.
‘He invites the most hardcore trans extremists to the White House’.
The moment that Biden demeaned his own office by meeting that literal capering clown, Dylan ‘girl-bulge’ Mulvaney on tv, in the White House, was the moment my growing realisation that the Democrats are actively and deliberately dragging the dignity and institutions of the United States through the mire … and loving every minute of it … solidified. I’m not American so my view rightly counts for little but to see that proud country in particular allow itself to be so besmirched before its own citizens and the world amazes me. Were I a US citizen, I’d likely have tended to vote Democrat previously but now I’d be joining Andrew Sullivan and voting Republican.
I read 1984 for the first time recently. I was rather shocked by the blatancy of the ‘hate’ session, when everyone focusses on the evil enemy Goldstein. I thought that Orwell was taking his story beyond credible levels. Presented with such prejudice and hostility against a remote figure, surely, I thought, the public would walk away and lose sympathy.
Then I read a review in the Guardian of a new film about Padre Pio. Unrelated to American politics you might think except that near the end there was the usual gratuitous insulting comment about Trump and his followers. Indeed, no matter how irrelevant to the subject, you can barely write anything in the Guardian without broadcasting your anti-Trump credentials. No doubt the same is true of most American newspapers. Andrew Sullivan falls in neatly with his own contribution here.
Trump = Goldstein. Hating him is a mechanism for control. I wonder if there will ever come a point when Andrew Sullivan can agree with me about this.
It seems reasonable to assume the Democrats will take a thrashing in the midterms, but, sadly, I’m not so sure. Where I live, the Republicans seem to be running quite muted campaigns. I see little discussion of the key issues mentioned in the article: CRT in schools, immigration, inflation, ready access to gender reassignment surgery for minors. Of course, the msm will downplay those issues, but I receive pro-Democrat junk mail but nothing pro-Republican.
Then we have, in some states, the appalling Republican candidates. Park MacDougald writes about one such candidate in today’s edition of Unherd. MacDougald concludes that, despite his obvious deficiencies, Herschel Walker will win a senate seat in Georgia. Again, I’m not so sure.
Then there’s the 2024 election. Even the author of the current article states that, while he’s willing to switch from Democrat to Republican for the midterms, he will not vote for Trump under any circumstances if Trump is the Republican candidate in 2024. It looks increasingly like Trump will run. I voted for him in 2016. That was his moment, but his time has passed, imo. We need someone like DeSantis who knows how to play the political game. Trump seems poised to split the Republicans and turn away swing voters, to the Democrats’ benefit.
I reluctantly agree with an earlier article by Joel Kotkin that maybe the Republicans need defeat in 2022 and 2024 as a catalyst to unify around a single, reasonable platform–aligned with the priorities of the majority of Americans–that will finally vanquish the madness of modern Democratic policies.
“I see little discussion of the key issues mentioned in the article: CRT in schools, immigration, inflation, ready access to gender reassignment surgery for minors. Of course, the msm will downplay those issues….”
Maybe because, whilst those issues are real, most people, Dems included, do not care and are not affected by them. The two groups that do ‘care’ and cling onto and exaggerate these issues ad nauseam, are 1) ‘social justice warriors’ (self-serving twerps); and 2) Republican dark-arts manipulators who see votes in whipping up the outrage (self-serving twerps).
The Media destroyed themselves, and you poured gas on the fire.
Conservative (n) – A liberal who has just been mugged
Andrew’s version of conservatism is one formed in the hothouse atmosphere of Magdalen College, Oxford and Harvard: it bears little relationship with most conservative voters’ notion.
And were the Democratic party now fins itself did not start with Clinton and Obama?
The author is deceiving himself
“We are ﬁve days away from fundamentally transforming the United States of America.” – Barack Obama, election eve, 2008
Did it start here? Nope! We have to go further back in time to understand what has been happening in America for decades.
Yuri Bezmenov, an ex-KGB agent, gave an interview in 1984, and predicted, in no uncertain terms WHAT would happen, and HOW it would be done: Use our own Public School System to indoctrinate the future generations into hating the country.
Search for this video: “Former KGB Agent, Yuri Bezmenov, Warns America About Socialist Subversion”
When Saul Alinsky (a Marxist) wrote his book “Rules For Radicals” in 1971; he included the following in the Prologue:
“What I have to say in this book is not the arrogance of unsolicited advice. It is the experience and counsel that so many young people have questioned me about through all-night sessions on hundreds of campuses in America. It is for those young radicals who are committed to the fight,committed to life.Remember we are talking about revolution, not revelation; you can miss the target by shooting too high as well as too low. First, there are no rules for revolution any more than there are rules for love or rules for happiness,but there are rules for radicals who want to change their world;there are certain central concepts of action in human politics that operate regardless of the scene or the time. To know these is basic to a pragmatic attack on the system.These rules make the difference between being a realistic radical and being a rhetorical one who uses the tired old words and slogans…”
The end goal is NOT reformation of our country, it’s the destruction of the whole Capitalist system, and replace it with Marxism.
I have been saying this about “Love Letter to America” for some time. It’s all in there. We see it all around the West. The KGB spent only 20% of its budget on syping, the rest on its support for disruptive groups which undermine the West.
“Many of us who supported Obama are now deemed “white supremacists” for agreeing with him.”
Good. Anyone who could not see through the charade of running a senile, hair sniffing, lying, head of a crime family for President 2 years ago deserves to be swept up in the pain as progressive America eats itself alive.
Sounds like US voters are in the same position as we brits – Hobsons Choice.
Lots of us Brits vote for the least evil on election day..
Yes, as Ed West put it in his book “Small Men on the Wrong Side of History” vote for the party which is least shite.
Just seems so much worse now.
“Can you think of any social issue where the Biden administration hasn’t taken the position of the illiberal “social justice” Left?”
Yet the Republican’s are a threat to democracy. This piece certainly was written by someone other than the Andrew Sullivan that I know. His points come directly from Victor Davis Hanson. Welcome to sanity, Andrew.
Excellent , pithy, clear summary of what ails the US of A thanks Andrew !!_
What kept you?
Andrew Sullivan is a fine example of how TDS leads to permanent psychological damage.
He sees, and apparently understands, the insane and utterly destructive polices of the Biden administration over 2 short years (although he omits the outrageous ongoing protests outside the homes of Supreme Court justices which have also been condoned by the Biden regime; and the humiliating withdrawal from Afghanistan). Yet he still feels comfortable to write: “If he (Trump) runs again, we’ll have no choice one more time“.
One occasionally meets people who seem intelligent and decent enough, & politically of the broad centre. And then at some point they will come out with the most vicious vitriol about “the Jews”. Theirs is a deep-rooted, irrational prejudice – hatred even – which is permanently etched into their psyche and at the most crucial times will mar their judgment or course of action. This is what has happened to the TDS afflicted in 2022: prejudice overrides principle, decency & common sense. And Sullivan’s “we” above is instructive. It sends out a clear message to would-be tyrants. And it’s manna from heaven for people like Biden & his handlers and the obsessives of the hard left. They know that even if the Sullivans of this world will not support them publicly they will remain silent as they go about extinguishing liberty.
Exactly. When the populists won in US and then in UK with Brexit I confidently assumed that the party of reason and compassion would benevolently display its superior approach to problems and in due course win back the critics at least enough of them to go back to normality.
But again and again I didn’t understand the things the liberal left kept doing. Throwing tantrums about Brexit, trying to subvert the vote was the beginning. Just as I was hoping now that’s put of the system we can go back, came the cancel culture, extreme forms of left with defund the police, calling everything and everyone with an opinion racist, suppressing debate on covid, mutilating minors bypassing parents it got crazier and crazier. I came to the very uncomfortable realisation that these people were never really that reasonable or compassionate to start with, at least not nearly to the extent I gave them credit for.
That made me today a resolute moderate unafraid of being seen as conservative (or liberal). And I’m voting conservative as long as the left insists on acting deranged.
Alleged moderate? Biden was never a moderate; he’s been a corrupt hack his entire career; I wrote the man off as such in 1987 and in the interim my opinion has only gotten worse. Joe Biden has been a persistent polyp on American politics for close to half a century and of late he’s become malignant.
A leftist fool that votes and his freedoms are soon parted!
You’re holding your nose at the thought of Trump, yet you nevertheless voted for Biden who has quite clearly been a egregious waste of space throughout his entire political life, a genuinely vile example of a human being?
Jan 6 blah blah blah. Trump blah blah. Well you are getting what you asked for. Good and hard.
Don’t forget that Obama refused to give Ukraine lethal weapons. Granted, we all assumed that the Russian military would live up to its hype instead of showing itself to be overwhelmingly incompetent. But Obama accepted the inevitably of Ukraine being within the Russian sphere of influence, and not becoming part of NATO.
There was no choice in 2020, given Trump. I understand that. If he runs again, we’ll have no choice one more time.
Could we have chapter and verse on why, when Trump runs, there is “no choice?” Corrupt? Racist? Mean tweets? Failing to put Fauci in jail? Bullying the Fed on interest rates? Building the wall? Failing to start a new war?
Inquiring minds would like to kmow.
I too would love an explaination.
Yes, Trump was a loud mouth ego maniac who should have had his phone taken from him but what is with the perpetual Trump Derangement Syndrome that so many suffer from?
What is it that he did that was so bad? He didn’t send troops in anywhere which hadn’t been done in decades. Both Republican AND Democratic presidents have perpetuated our military involvement but Trump didn’t.
The economy was good. He was apprehensive about panicking over Covid. Inflation was low as were gas prices.
Exactly what is it that he did that was so bad? I often ask this of others but I’ve yet to get a detailed reason other than the usual “He’s a mysogynist”.
I didn’t like the guy much either but we’re picking Biden over Trump? Really? Why? I wish people would really ask themselves what it is that they hate about Trump so much.
People in America, me included know that for years now the Democrats and Republicans, for example Nancy Pelosi and Liz Cheney have been colluding against the average American’s best interests, regardless of their political beliefs. Trump gave people a third option. Perhaps not a great option but a real option none the less that appealed to a great number of people.
Trump has served his purpose and shown that the real rulers of America don’t want anyone to question their power but Trump did. I do believe he did it to feed his own insatiable ego but I don’t care about that. I care that he had the ego to do it and pave the way for a new sect of the Republican Party who really do care about our right and liberties and doing what’s best for the majority of Americans. I’ll be voting for DeSantis in 2024 but still thanking Trump for paving the way while still glad he’s gone.
I turned 18 in 1980. I voted for Carter that year and have voted for Democratic candidates in every single election since. But that ends tomorrow. Andrew put into words what I’ve been screaming into the void and the Democrats embrace of Trans ideology was the last straw. I could never vote for Trump, but right now I can’t think of a single Democrat that I would consider voting for in 2024. I have my doubts that the Democratic party is capable of learning anything from what is likely to be a wipeout on Tuesday.
The true election denial is to deny that the national security state wedded to the media they control actually control elections by hook or by crook. Can any sentient creature deny that sans Hunter Biden laptop denial and without Zuckerbux conspiracy Trump would have been elected?
One may descry the potential of Trump being elected but does that fear justify denying the electorate their free choice? When democracy prevails we are a resilient and strong nation. When the majority of voters come to believe their vote doesn’t count due to manipulation and lies we become something much more fragile.
THAT is the true threat to democracy.
This is an excellent article and though Unherd’s readers tend to lean right, I think it’s good that other views are expressed here. I suspect Mr. Sullivan is far from alone in his views. The Democratic party is currently a volatile alliance of several groups. First, mainstream establishment types who are more similar to the Tories in the UK than any of your left parties. Their typical supporters are affluent, urban, upper middle class college grads who have succeeded in the service/information economy and are aided by the status quo. Second, minority voters who vote based on history and the perceived racism of the other side. Third, the hard left social justice warriors who have very little actual support, but are extremely loud and influential in certain highly visible fields like education and media. The problem is that the third group, and I’ll add environmentalists obsessed with climate change to that group, is now demanding policies that are actively undermining the other two groups. The Democrats are between Scylla and Charybdis. The nation is closely divided. Geography already favors the other party. The hard left’s policies are increasingly alienating everyone else. However, the more the Democrats push against the far left, the more they risk having those voters either stay home or vote third party. It is a dynamic that will likely get them beaten in these mid-terms, and barring an improbable economic turnaround, beaten again in 2024 by anyone not named Donald Trump.
I think the problem with Democrats is that they lost faith in liberalism which used to keep them a moderate party give or take in terms of ideology. Now they have become a genuinely leftist party even if it is cultural / identitarian left, meaning now they are an ideologically charged political group unlike in the past. This implies they know now for certain what is right for the world, so there is nothing that stops them going forward with it. In the past the extremists would simply be greedy, now with the ideological polarisation their extremists are the deranged true believers which is what’s causing their influence and the problems that come with it.
I used to puzzle at the American use of the word ‘liberal‘ and thought that in their context it had become meaningless; quite utterly divorced from classical liberalism. Now, however, I think it has regained some meaning, and that in America it has become to embody the exact opposite: a rabid illiberalism and complete inability to deal intellectually with any contrary points of view. Backed up, as we saw in 2019 (BLM and Antifa), with violence and intimidation.
On Twitter this week Sarah Silverman asked how we can know what is accurate information if Twitter has no censors to tell us.
We have an entire generation of “thought leaders,” many of whom in Hollywood are college drop outs (for better? for worse?), who have never read John Stuart Mill.
Neither party really embodies the principals of classical liberalism. Modern Democrats’ version of liberalism is basically an amalgam of globalist and humanist values and policies that have been grafted onto each other more out of political expediency than any coherent overarching philosophy. Republicans more closely resemble classical liberals, but only because of their opposition to neoliberalism and their focus on traditional culture and values. In truth, the Republicans are also a coalition, their factions being nationalists, libertarians, and populists, strongly united by the opposition to globalism naturally shared by all three ideologies. When globalism is mostly defeated, as it eventually will be, the tensions between the various Republican groups will reassert themselves.
Liberalism is a broad church – that’s both its strength and the source of its demise.
Our nation’s founders would be aghast at the hell hole DC has become. Independent of Congress, one sees the creation of African- Americans. “Almost all this hideous violence is inflicted on African-Americans” as well.
The real message of the article is the impotence of Biden and how our nation is adversely affected, which is independent of the DC Council.
The author’s message is spot on, those who do not receive are simply blind. Hopefully tommorow will reflect American’s knowledge of this message.
Washington, D.C. lost 50,000 residents since 2019, dropping from 705,000 to 657,000 residents. The only other nearby urban area to have this type of loss was Baltimore. Philadelphia, Richmond, and all the small cities outside of DC – Arlington, Bethesda, Silver Spring, etc. – actually grew or were static.
I am exactly the same. Finding myself crossing the floor. Doing the unimaginable. Not only switching allegiance to Republicans but literally terrified of what has happened to the Democrats and what it means for America.
Andrew Sullivan used to be an emblematic liberal, a gay intellectual you could respect even if you disagreed with him. His party has veered so far left that now it seems he learned politics at the knee of Ronald Reagan.
Reagan was a Democrat when young.
He makes some valid points.
We do need a strong, common sense, practical, middle. It is only when we have that the system can handle having the extremes.
He is right in that we are fast being faced with a choice between the hard right and the hard left with those of us in the middle being stuck with two poor choices.
And, he is right that given a choice between the hard, authoritarian left, and the right, we will likely pick the right.
The best thing that could happen is that the democrats get demolished today and are forced to abandon the progressive fruitcakes on the side of the road.
Then, pray that somehow DeSantis ends up the republican nominee without Trump having disabled him first.
Amazing that anyone could contemplate voting Republican especially if criminal Trump manages to secure the nomination again.
Fortunately the American electorate is wiser than the far right hacks currently dominating the Republican party and their grotesque buffoon of a leader
What else can we expect from Sullivan? Biden is trying to practic a very soft-form of social democracy which in the U.S. is seen as equivalent to ‘cawmunism’. The U.S. penal system is the harshest on the planet and is overwhelmingly aimed at the poor and statistically eviscerated black communities. Just think for a second: you can get LIFE if found smoking cannabis and charged for a third time. A guy was recently gaoled by a jury who believed a white prosecutor that a line in a rap song about making a rap son was street slang for murder. Sullivan talking about the political centre is a joke. He has been on the right of politics all his life.
Back after a year or so to check what Unherd is like now…… even worse than before.
The author has a well cemented conservative mindset. Every single argument that he makes has it’s origen in conservatism and is a reflection of common conservative talking points easily found in conservative circles. I can easily find a counter argument for each argument, but arguing that will take me a whole article. I encourage Unheard to publish an article from someone who will challenge this person’s viewpoints. Incidentally there are politicians running for office right now that are more dangerous than Trump for our democracy, which was never perfect anyway. Weather this person ever voted democrat seems irrelevant right now, for the Democratic party will never align with his present beliefs. He doesn’t need to make excuses for his change of worldview. He is a conservative now, and that’s what it is.