Learning the Lesson of History

Saturday, February 25, 2017
by Patrick Dorinson

This weekend Democrats are meeting in Atlanta to elect their new Chairman, commiserate and plot their return to power.

And in Maryland conservatives and Republicans are meeting at the Conservative Political Action Conference or CPAC to hail the new president and celebrate their return to power.

What a stunning role reversal to say the least.

As President Trump moves forward by shockingly doing exactly what he promised during the campaign, the Democrats brief period of self-reflection has ended.

For a moment after the 2016 election there were some voices within the Democrat Party who understood that in order to survive they would need to finally listen to the needs of the forgotten Americans of the Rust Belt and rural America and not the liberal urban and coastal elites.

 That silly notion was quickly brushed aside by the Bernie Sanders/Elizabeth Warren wing of the party who believe that the only reason they lost was that their voters didn’t turn out for Hillary. It was simply a numbers problem because after all they won California by 4 million votes.

It had nothing to do with their message of identity politics, open borders, transgender bathrooms and anemic economic growth.

In 1968 at the height of the Vietnam War Democrats lost a close election to Richard Nixon whom they vilified almost as much as they now vilify President Trump.

Their candidate in that election was then Vice President Hubert Humphrey an establishment figure much like Hillary Clinton was.

After their defeat Democrats went even further left so that when it came time for Nixon’s re-election campaign in 1972 they nominated extremely liberal George McGovern who was buried in a Nixon landslide.

Then came Watergate which happened during the 1972 campaign but didn’t really explode until 1973. And then all hell broke loose.

It finally brought down Richard Nixon.

But Nixon was not brought down by Democrats. Nor was it the media although they like to claim credit for his scalp that now hangs in the newsroom of the Washington Post.

He was brought down by his own hubris and the unethical and in some cases illegal actions of a cabal of advisers. When even his allies told him he needed to resign he swallowed the bitter pill and went into exile.

Nixon was elected and then re-elected by many of the same voters who later became “Reagan Democrats” or Trump’s “forgotten Americans”.

He called them the “silent majority”.

And in 2016 that “silent majority”, many of whom had voted twice for Barack Obama, voted for Donald Trump.

Now just like post 1968, Democrats are telling themselves that by moving farther to the left they can reclaim power.

The two main candidates for party chair are really left and really, really left so whoever wins this prize will mean that Democrats have decided to double down on the agenda that lost them the presidency in 2016.

 Good luck with that.

So here is your Cowboy Wisdom for the Week.

“When you lose don’t lose the lesson”.

Democrats not only lost they never accepted that they needed to learn a lesson.

And until they do they will continue to lose.