Mark Reardon for Mayor: Make St. Louis Fun Again

Reading Time: 5 minutes

Nobody likes traffic, but St. Louis was built to hold a million people. And it once did, back in the days when Democrats and Republicans took turns being mayor.

[Free Offer for Business Owners at Bottom] (read the small print)

Now, in this foul year of our Lord twenty-sixteen, just over 300,000 people call the city home. A 70 percent decline!

And I’m not one of them. For several reasons that no reasonable person could argue with.

First, the city has a crime problem. Actually, the city has a remarkable skill for crime. Everybody I know who lives or lived in the City of St. Louis has had a car stolen or broken into, myself included. (I was also robbed at knifepoint during a Spirtits of St. Louis basketball game in 1975, but I’m over that. Really, I’m over it.)

Next, the city has a terrible reputation. Terrible. I’ll tell you a story about just how terrible.

We were in an Uber SUV going from a client visit in Redmond back to our hotel in Seattle. It was about 8 p.m. and dark. January. I sat in the front passenger’s seat where I could banter playfully with the driver, ensuring a 4-star review. My two colleagues sat in back in silence, worried that I’d reveal too much.

At one point, the driver asked, “where are you guys from.”

“St. Louis,” I said proudly.

The driver’s face looked like he suddenly felt a major gas issue coming on. His eyes widened and his jowls stretched freakishly as if the force of gravity suddenly doubled. He fell silent and began nervously glancing into the rearview mirror at my colleagues. No doubt wondering, “will they ever find my body?”

To ease the tension, I chuckled. Probably a bit too forcefully, judging by the poor man’s reaction.

“Seattle’s a peaceful city,” he said. “We don’t want any trouble.” His voice was tight and clipped.

“Trouble?” I said. “Do we look like trouble? We’re just here for a good time.”

Why the hell did I say that? We were in Seattle on serious business. I must have been overcompensating for the man’s terror and disgust at the mere mention of St. Louis.

“I know about the riots,” he said, his voice now a cross between Gilbert Godfried and Carol Channing. The poor devil was petrified.

“What riots?” I asked.

After a darting glance in the rearview mirror looking for signs of weapons or sudden movements, he answered, “Ferguson.”

“Oh that,” my colleague said. “That’s nothing. Out of towners get all freaked about that stuff. Don’t pay attention. It’s just good times.”

Now the man was terrified.

Wait. This was supposed to be about Mark Reardon.

Did you hear Mark Reardon’s running for mayor of St. Louis? You will. And you’ll love it.

Mark can make St. Louis politics fun again. We all need that, don’t we? And we want our reputation back. St. Louis used to be fun and relatively risk-free. Let’s do it again.

Some people thought Donald Trump announced his candidacy for president just to boost his private businesses. Now we know that thinking was wrong. Trump believes America needs his leadership, and he’s decided to make the last chapter of his life a mission to fix a troubled nation.

With KMOX’s Mark Reardon now running for mayor of St. Louis, you might be thinking Reardon’s run is a publicity stunt. Skepticism is natural, especially about politics. In time, you’ll see what Mark can do for the city.

Don’t be surprised as things change for the better. Reardon has a real shot at the GOP nomination, and in the era of the outsider, anything’s possible. Smart libertarians, conservatives, and disaffected Democrats in St. Louis should get behind Mark’s run. It can only help, because Mark Reardon will make a great mayor.

The more you hear from Mark, the more you’ll see what he can do for the city. Luckily, he’s on the radio every day from 2:00 until . . .  after I get home and stop listening to the radio. After 5:00, anyway. Plus, the Reardon Round Table every Friday at 2:15 has been called “the best broadcast entertainment since Jack Benny died,” or something. That’s probably because I’m on it, as are John Lamping and Eric Schmidt. Not to mention the great Jane Dueker. And other Democrats.

Speaking of Democrats, Democratic in-breeding has produced several generations of mutated and sickly city leadership. A fresh Democrat can only introduce fresh diseases to an already weak and failing host. St. Louis city government does little well, as you know. Part of the reason for St. Louis’s dysfunction is one-party, one-view leadership. Although, “leadership” is stretching it. But Mark Reardon will make a great mayor.

Now, St. Louisans have a chance to turn this city around. I wholeheartedly endorse Mark. Mark will make a great Mayor.

He’s the voice of St. Louis afternoons, and St. Louis needs him. In fact, St. Louis desperately needs his brand of libertarian, civic-minded leadership. Most importantly, the city needs a leader who can communicate a vision of what St. Louis can be.  Even Uber drivers in Seattle want that.

Mark’s campaign team includes some amazing political geniuses from all factions of St. Louis politics. He’s already shown a unique ability to unify Republicans and Democrats with his choice of Jane Dueker as campaign manager.

The deeper Mark goes into this race, the higher he’ll lift the city’s hopes. And its reputation. 

Keep an eye on Hennessy’s View and listen in to Mark’s show every day at 2:00 as this amazing story develops. You’re going to love it.

Let’s make St. Louis politics fun again.

If you found any of this entertaining or useful, you’ll find my book at this link.


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Caution: Identifying as ‘NeverTrump’ Changes Your Brain

Reading Time: 5 minutes

When a person declares himself “NeverTrump,” he thinks he’s making a political statement. Or a moral one. But he’s not. He’s making a psychological commitment that’s very difficult and painful to break.

Identity is the highest, most powerful form of persuasion. Identity also drives our decisions in parts of the brain we don’t really have conscious control over. I realize many conservatives reject brain science, but, for those of you who are open to learning, I’ll explain as best I can in a moment.

Before that, I’ll tell you that I am not a brain scientist. I’m a persuasive design strategist, and I study this stuff every day. I even work with some brain scientists. But I’m not one. So I’ll have to quote some of those professional, certified scientists to show you how this works.

Our Brains Decide Before We Do

First, our brains decide before we do. In a famous study by neuroscientists at the Max Planck Institute, researchers watched brain activity while subjects responded to images with either their left hand or their right, depending on the image. The images slowly resolved, so it took a while for the subjects to get enough information to make the decision. Here’s what happened:

By monitoring the micro patterns of activity in the frontopolar cortex, the researchers could predict which hand the participant would choose 7 SECONDS before the participant was aware of the decision.

“Your decisions are strongly prepared by brain activity. By the time consciousness kicks in, most of the work has already been done,” said study co-author John-Dylan Haynes, a Max Planck Institute neuroscientist.

Those subjects felt like they made a conscious decision, but they really didn’t. The brain decides before we do. And the brain makes its decisions, in part, based on defaults and filters we consciously implant.

Identity Is Everything to the Brain

One of the most powerful defaults we implant in our minds is identity. For example, I identify as a Blues hockey fan. I don’t know all the ways this affects my behavior, but I know it does. And I now know, after years of studying brain science, that my Blues fan identity affects my behavior in ways I will never be aware of. I’m okay with that. It’s how we’re wired.

But what does that have to do with NeverTrump? Everything.

NeverTrump is not a slogan. It’s an identity claim. Sam Gosling, a personality psychologist at the University of Texas, puts it this way on Eric Barker’s Barking Up The Wrong Tree blog:

Identity claims are deliberate statements we make about our attitudes, goals, values, etc… One of the things that’s really important to keep in mind about identity statements is because these are deliberate, many people assume we are being manipulative with them and we’re being disingenuous, but I think there’s little evidence to suggest that that goes on. I think, generally, people really do want to be known. They’ll even do that at the expense of looking good. They’d rather be seen authentically than positively if it came down to that choice.

Some people think I look like an idiot when I wear a Blues hockey sweater. I’m 52 and I haven’t played ice hockey for 15 years. But I wear it anyway because I’d rather be seen as a Blues fan than positively.

The Brain Wants to be Consistent

When someone publicly identifies as NeverTrump, he makes a commitment. And most people behave consistently with their prior commitments.

My favorite persuasion scientist, Dr. Robert Cialdini, demonstrated this phenomenon in a famous experiment.

In one posh neighborhood, very few residents were willing to place a rather ugly Drive Safely sign in their front yards. But in a similar neighborhood nearby, four times as many residents said “yes” to the sign.

The only difference between the two neighborhoods: a week before, the residents of the second neighborhood were asked to place a small postcard in their windows that read “Drive Safely.” Many of these residents agreed to the postcard. Almost all of the people who accepted the postcard also accepted the sign.

These folks had made a prior, public commitment to safe driving, so they had to “yes” to the big sign. They behaved consistently with that commitment even though they probably didn’t know why they said “yes” to the big, garish sign. They identified as pro-safe driving.

NeverTrump Is Dangerous

In my morning post, I came down pretty hard on the consequences of NeverTrumpism: increased abortions, increased racial violence, and potential assassinations. It’s all true, but I know people didn’t want to read it. If you think I was just lashing out at people I disagree with, this post might change your mind. Here’s why.

NeverTrumpers identify as NeverTrump. Some, like Jonah Goldberg and Bill Kristol, make NeverTrump their primary identity claim. In their brains, all decisions are filtered through the NeverTrump lens. We’ve already seen the science on this, so you know this is true.

As the election gets closer, their fantastical hopes of a viable third choice for president–someone other than Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump–will fade. They will realize what you and I already know and have known: the choice for president is binary. It’s crooked Hillary or Donald Trump for president. There will be no third way. 

When that happens, most NeverTrumpers will choose consistency. It won’t be a conscious choice. They’ve already surrendered their conscious decisions to the NeverTrump filter in their brains. They will feel like they’re making conscious decisions about how to vote, but they won’t be. They’ll just obey the defaults and filters they’ve implanted.

Unless they turn soon.

There’s Still Some Time

So those NeverTrumpers, to be consistent, will actively work against Donald Trump. In the voting booth, that will mean wasting their votes on a non-viable candidate. But before that, they will do whatever it takes to throw the election to Hillary Clinton. Their identity claim will demand it.

The reason I wrote such a powerful statement this morning is to warn others: be careful when making identity claims because you will become that identity. You’ll probably lose control of your decisions. And you will suffer serious emotional pain if you break from that identity, especially if you value consistency. Remember, the brain decides before we do, and the brain decides based on prior commitments. One of the most powerful commitments a person can make is an identity claim, like “NeverTrump.”

You can call my other post “tough love” if you wish, or you can call it me being a dick. I don’t care. But I do care about the damage Hillary Clinton has done and will do to this country with the help of NeverTrumpers.

After all the good they’ve done in their lives, it’d be a shame for Jonah Goldberg and Bill Kristol to be remembered as the Republicans who fed America to the Clinton wood-chipper. The NeverTrumpers are in for four emotionally painful years unless they break their self-defeating identity claims soon. And they will blame the voters, never themselves.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. NeverTrumpers can go through the pain of breaking their commitment to NeverTrumpism before the election and work to influence Trump’s administration and Congress. It will hurt for a moment, but they will be heroes in the end. I wrote a book to help them.

There’s time to turn, but that time is draining away fast. Choose wisely.


How NeverTrump Promotes Race Violence

Reading Time: 4 minutes

NeverTrumpers who don’t cross over stand to get a lot of blood on their hands. I’m not the only one noticing. If anything, I’m understating the case. Now we know: to be anti-Trump is to be pro-abortion and pro-race war. To be anti-Trump is to support violence against police officers, especially white police officers. That’s because Hillary is all those things, and to be anti-Trump is, logically, to be pro-Hillary. (If they both live until January 20, either Clinton or Trump will be the next president. No one else has a chance.) And, now, someone else has the guts to agree with me.

Back in June, I pointed out that Democrats actively encourage racial violence against Trump supporters because they think it helps their crooked Hillary Clinton. Here’s what I wrote on June 22:

Not all Democrats are evil people. I know some of them, and the ones I know are not really evil. A lot of Democrats never killed anyone or even encouraged others to murder people for them. But Democrats do have a cozy relationship with death, especially the violent kind. They like abortion, they excuse terrorism, and they realize the only way to keep Trump from winning is to kill him.

NeverTrumpers have said they will work to get Crooked Hillary elected if Trump is the Republican Presidential nominee, so they’re helping push her racial violence, too. You can’t have one without the other. Maybe they say they are outraged by the murders of police officers, but they’ll let it go on if it helps Hillary whether they realize it or not. That’s how the mind works.

Now, persuasion expert Scott Adams really hammers home the message of just how dangerous these NeverTrump Hillary surrogates are. Read this carefully.

First, Scott Adams publicly endorsed Hillary Clinton for his personal safety. Even though he never endorsed Trump, NeverTrumpers and Democrats sent him and his family death threats for saying things about Trump the Hillary supporters interpreted as positive.

Here’s how Adams defends that endorsement:

If you didn’t believe me that I endorsed Clinton for my safety, perhaps the recent shooting of police officers changed your mind. That’s the sort of tragedy you expect to happen when Team Clinton frames the national debate as a race war. 

Then, Adams goes on to explain how Team Hillary and her NeverTrump surrogates encourage people to shoot cops:

So now we have a situation in which Team Clinton has scared citizens into thinking the threat to their lives is mostly domestic, coming from Trump, Trump supporters, and anyone who looks like them. People who are scared will act. And we see those actions now in terms of violence against police, violence against Trump supporters, and death threats to bloggers such as me. And we already have one attempted Trump assassination.

Adams explains that, contrary to what the NeverTrumpers pretend they’re not lying to you, Trump never mentions race in a negative way. Only Hillary and her NeverTrump surrogates do that:

You can blame Trump for Trump University, and for his uncivil language. You can blame Trump for lots of stuff. But the police shootings and the recent uptick in domestic racial violence are mostly Clinton’s doings to win the election. And it is working. Unless Trump finds a way to counter Clinton’s racial persuasion, he will lose in November.

Then, Adams, like me, recognizes that Team Hillary will try to kill Trump if they have to to win:

I expect Trump to go full-attack after the conventions. It would take the world’s greatest persuader to redefine Trump in a way that he can win the election. But as it turns out, Trump is probably the world’s greatest persuader. That’s why I predict he will win in a landslide. Unless someone kills him first.

Ever hear of Ron Brown?


Before I let you go, I’ll give NeverTrumpers the same defense I gave Democrats who support Hillary. NeverTrumpers are not all evil people. I know some NeverTrumpers, and the ones I know are not really evil. A lot of NeverTrumpers never killed anyone or even encouraged others to murder people for them. But NeverTrumpers do have a cozy relationship with death, especially the violent kind. NeverTrumpers will allow an increase in abortion, and they realize the only way to keep Trump from winning is to kill him.

Maybe NeverTrumpers will get their way, but they’ll lose their souls in the process. And more.

Ironically, if anything happens to Trump, NeverTrumpers will get the blame. Do they really believe the media and a Hillary administration would blame anyone but some faction of the GOP for such a crime?  Hillary jailed some hapless video maker for her Benghazi debacle, did she not? It would be a piece of cake to pin a Trump assassination on conservatives. Conservatives Brad Thor and Glenn Beck have both and together threatened or encouraged others to make attempts on Trump’s life. Beck had to face Secret Service scrutiny for his on-air threats. And Beck has Joe Carroll-like cult followers planted all around the country.

If NeverTrumpers think they wouldn’t get framed for Trump’s demise, they’re pretending they’re not lying to themselves.

Of course, as I said, NeverTrumpers are not necessarily bad people. Some of them will realize that Trump is a much better person than Hillary. Much better person. And they’ll vote for Trump.

It’s not too late to cross over to the light side, but it will be soon. My new book will make your turning easy and effortless.