Posts by William Hennessy

Co-founder of St. Louis Tea Party Coalition and Nationwide Chicago Tea Party Persuasive design expert Latest book: Turning On Trump: An Evolution (2016) Author of The Conservative Manifest (1993), Zen Conservatism (2009), Weaving the Roots (2011), and Fight to Evolve (2016) I believe every person deserves the dignity of meaningful work as the only path to human flourishing.

2018: The beginning of the end of the Fourth Turning in America

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Regardless of its ideology, that new leadership will assert public authority and demand private sacrifice. Where leaders had once been inclined to alleviate societal pressures, they will now aggravate them to command the nation’s attention.

—William Strauss and Neil Howe: The Fourth Turning: What the Cycles of History Tell Us About America’s Next Rendezvous with Destiny

Donald Trump can’t stand festering problems. Trump forces problems to the surface, into the daylight, where they can be fought and settled. So he can move on.

Trump seems less concerned with the outcome than with getting an outcome. A loss is better than a tie to our president.

And William Strauss and Neil Howe prophesied just such a leader in their 1997 book The Fourth Turning. You should read it. Again. Especially chapter 10: A Fourth Turning Prophecy.

Soon after the catalyst, a national election will produce a sweeping political realignment, as one faction or coalition capitalizes on a new public demand for decisive action.

The old Republican Party is dead. The new GOP is a populist-conservative coalition. Establishment Republicans cannot win without their populist wing, just as the GOP of the 1970s and 1980s could not win without its Evangelical Christian wing. We will never see that old establishment return in our lifetimes.

And The Fourth Turning saw all of this coming.

In foreign affairs, 2018 will see larger swaths of the American public, academia, and media turn against globalization and toward nationalism. They won’t call it “nationalism,” but the results will be nationalistic. Just as Strauss and Howe predicted:

In foreign affairs, America’s initial Fourth Turning instinct will be to look away from other countries and focus total energy on the domestic birth of a new order. Later, provoked by real or imagined outside provocations, the society will turn newly martial. America will become more isolationist than today in its unwillingness to coordinate its affairs with other countries but less isolationist in its insistence that vital national interests not be compromised.

The US economy, as we saw yesterday, will surge. Just as Strauss and Howe predicted:

The economy will in time recover from its early and vertiginous reversals. Late in the Crisis, with trust and hope and urgency growing fast, it may even achieve unprecedented levels of efficiency and production. But, by then, the economy will have changed fundamentally. Compared to today, it will be less globally dependent, with smaller cross-border trade and capital flows. . . .

The Fourth Turning even saw Trump’s massive infrastructure bill coming 21 years ahead of time:

Fourth Turning America will begin to lay out the next saeculum’s infrastructure grid— some higher-tech facsimile of turnpikes, railroads, or highways.

And a shift away from entitlements that benefit individuals over society, toward large projects that benefit society over the individual. I.e., the general welfare:

The economic role of government will shift toward far more spending on survival and future promises (defense, public works) and far less on amenities and past promises (elder care, debt service). The organization of both business and government will be simpler and more centralized, with fewer administrative layers, fewer job titles, and fewer types of goods and services transacted.

We are already seeing this prophecy play out. Globalism is officially in decline. Paul Ryan plans to reform entitlements in 2018. President Trump is promising a huge investment in defense and public works, paid for by growth and entitlement reform.

But these deep cultural changes will create intense conflict in the United States. The society shaped after World War II will be replaced by a new society. Just as Franklin Roosevelt laid the groundwork for the last American era, Donald J. Trump is laying the groundwork for the next.

And one generation will provide the grit and toughness to drive all this change. That generation is the least talked-about generation in history. It’s the generation of slackers. It’s the generation of dangerous children. It’s the generation that grew up with Donald J. Trump: Generation X. The change that’s coming is a direct result of America’s first Gen X Election.

Soon, but not now, we’ll take a deeper look at Generation X’s role in the next era of history.

2018 will change American culture at its core

Reading Time: 4 minutes

If you’re wondering how things will change in 2018, you might think back the mid-1980s.

In the 1980s, leftist professors, leftist news media, and leftist entertainers were angry. For years, they’d preached that Ronald Reagan was a neo-Nazi buffoon whose incompetence and malice would destroy America. Maybe even wipe out the human species. “I believe Ronald Reagan can turn America back into what it once was,” said comedian Steve Martin on Saturday Night Live in 1980, “a vast wasteland covered with ice.”

By 1986, though, the left’s dire predictions were ruined. Unemployment was low. Gasoline was under $1 a gallon in many places. The Iron Curtain showed signs of cracking. Stocks were soaring. Ronald Reagan was re-elected in one of the largest landslides ever. It was Morning in America.

So what did the left do? Did they grudgingly admit their errors? Did the credit Ronald Reagan for America’s miraculous turnaround?

Of course not. These are leftists we’re talking about. Admitting error takes character, a quality prohibited on the left.

Instead, the left found alternative heroes. The left created a narrative to explain America’s resurgence in which Reagan became the beneficiary of other people’s efforts.

Those other people: American workers.

In the left’s view, the American worker recognized Reagan’s wicked ineptness and took the country on its shoulders. Blue collar heroes sacrificed and scratched to remake America in spite of Reagan’s terrible, awful policies and blundering, dangerous style. Ted Turner made friends with the Soviet Union, conducting his own foreign policy to save the world.

This narrative preserved the left’s biases while explaining Morning in America. The left was wrong, but they didn’t mind. Their hallucinations, their self-images, were intact.

Look ahead to 2018, now. The US economy is poised to explode never before since Reagan. There’s a possibility of 7%+ GDP growth in at least one quarter of 2018. The Dow Jones Industrial Average could double by years end, approaching 50,000.

Will Democrats and the media credit Trump?

If you answered “yes” or hesitated in answering “no,” you don’t understand the leftist mind. The left will never admit Trump made America great again.

Instead, they’ll create an alternative explanation for surging American greatness. That explanation will be the same one they used in 1986: the American worker.

Here’s how 2018 will play out:

  1. President Trump will work with Democrats to hammer out an enormous infrastructure bill. Democrats will go along because they need votes in November. They’ll see the infrastructure bill as a way of driving a wedge between the president and the House Freedom Caucus while giving Democrat incumbents a bragging point in their districts.
  2. The tax reform bill will fuel a late-spring, early-summer rally like you’ve never seen before. Employers will complain about a huge, historic shortage of quality labor and about the rapidly rising wage problem. (Yes, wage growth will officially become a problem in May 2018, when Krugman declares “wages are out of control.”)
  3. The Justice Department will begin anti-trust investigations of Amazon, Google, Facebook, Apple, and Microsoft as both conservatives and leftists attack Silicon Valley’s unchecked power and abuses.
  4. By late summer and early fall, economists will project 2018’s economy to one of the best on record.
  5. By early fall, the infrastructure bill passed early in 2018 will see a slew of new construction across the country. People will take note of all the cranes on America’s skyline. They’ll complain about highway construction as commutes and road trips grow longer.
  6. Just before the 2018 elections, the left will need a new narrative to explain American greatness. That new narrative: America’s workers.

What will this narrative look like?

Bon Jovi and Bruce Springsteen’s working-class music will return with a vengeance. But a new blue-collar music star will emerge. Movies and television shows worshipping blue collar workers will premiere. (Trump fan Rosanne returns in the fall.)

Economists will explain how labor turned America around despite Trump’s malicious ineptness. Specifically, how American consumers decided to stop paying down debt and start living a little after recovering from the post-financial crisis trauma. These economists will carefully explain that Trump’s policies of lower taxes, less regulation, and strong foreign policy, actually hindered economic growth.

Feminists will tell us that successful women can best express their feminity by choosing a blue-collar mate. (Seriously, this will happen.) Meanwhile, anti-Trump and NeverTrump pundits will warn that both America’s economic resurgence and its growing popular support for President Trump (above 50% by the end of summer) are “a mile wide and an inch deep.”

Of course, many things could derail all this. There’s North Korea and Iran. There’s Russia. There’s China. There’s Bob Mueller. But those are all low-probability risks. And even if one of those risks materializes, we can’t be sure whether it will help or hurt the scenario I’ve just laid out.

In the end, 2018 will be seen by most American voters as the year things turned around in America. Just like 1984. The change will be broad and deep, affecting education, entertainment, news, fashion, marriage rates (rising), birth rates (rising), and attitudes.

How much credit belongs to Trump will never be settled. But the truth will lie somewhere between the narratives offered by Trump’s strongest critics and his strongest supporters.

We are entering the second half of the Fourth Turning. Trump was as much a result of the cycles of history as a catalyst. But without his style and substance, the enormous social change sweeping America could not have happened.

Tomorrow, we’ll look deeper into that Fourth Turning prophecy. For now, think about how your life will change with growing wages, a retreat from technomania, and a revitalization of both American manufacturing and blue collar workers. You might like what you see.

4 Years Ago Today, I Predicted de Blasio Would Ruin New York City

Reading Time: 1

I’m scheduling this blog on December 26, 2013. I’m predicting Bill de Blasio will be as bad for New York City as Mayor John Lindsay (1967-1974).

Read the original blog here.

Now, let’s look back at the New York City de Blasio inherited. According to ZeroHedge blog:

 New York crime rates are at historic lows, the $72.7 billion budget is balanced, jobs are at an all-time high and a record 54 million tourists pumped money into the economy this year. Homicides have declined by almost 50 percent since Bloomberg became mayor in 2002, and this year’s total of 333 through Dec. 29 is 20 percent below last year’s record low.

Ask yourself these questions:

  1. Is crime in NYC better or worse than in 2013?
  2. Is the budget still balanced?
  3. How many tourists visited NYC compared to the 54 million in 2013?
  4. Were there more or fewer homicides than the 333 in 2013?
  5. Is NYC on the right track?

Write your comments below.

 

Liberals Are Not the Enemy

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Forgive me. I say “liberal” sometimes when I mean something else.

My mistake is habit, not irony. (Irony would require some intent on my part.)

I grew up disparaging liberalism. I grew up reading and watching William F. Buckley Jr., for whom liberalism was the enemy.

In the post-WWII era, the liberalism of the day was a problem. But it was never the problem.

The problem in Western Civilization was a faction that used liberalism as cover. This faction crossed party lines. This faction actively sought and seeks the elimination of the US Constitution.

This dangerous faction included Republicans John Lindsay, George Romney, Lowell Weiker, and Nelson Rockefeller. Plus, many, many Democrats, communists, and others.

That dangerous faction goes by the deceptive name “progressive.”

A few weeks ago, I wrote about the difference between liberals and progressives:

Liberals.

Liberals who believe in the power of ideas.

Liberals who believe their ideas are so excellent that open debate can only help their cause.

Liberals who say “I’m okay; you’re okay.” (Progressives say, “I’m okay, you’re wrong, and you’ll be punished for your wrongness.”)

Oh, how I long for the liberalism of my youth.

A few days after I wrote that post, progressives turned against Nancy Pelosi, driving her from the stage. More proof that progressives, not liberals, are the enemies of freedom.

I previously warned that leftists are not liberals. Today, Nancy Pelosi learned that lesson. The hard way.

Nancy Pelosi had to be rushed off stage for her own safety. Safety from a mob. A mob of angry leftists. Leftists angry because Nancy condemned Antifa and ate dinner with Trump.

St. Louis Post-Dispatch writer Bill McClellan, a liberal, wrote an excellent column today. He reminds us that he’s like the liberals of my youth. The ones who might save us from the progressives. From the Antifa terrorists.

McClellan’s excellent column draws a bright line between liberal and progressive. You will enjoy reading it.

Regarding the recent progressive violence following Stockley’s acquittal, McClellan explains the difference between liberals and progressives:

I am still skeptical, but a conviction requires proof beyond a reasonable doubt.

Progressives seem to believe that skepticism ought to be sufficient for conviction.

After reading McClellan’s column, you’ll probably agree that we on the right can find common cause with liberals like Bill McClellan. We can find common cause in fighting back against anti-American progressives like Antifa. Those Antifa progressives are our common enemy.

Trump Instigates NFL Labor Dispute

Reading Time: 1

Yesterday, I predicted the NFL would suffer a season-shortening labor dispute this season or next.

The reason: President Trump’s pressure on owners to crack down on anthem haters will stir up a fight between NFL Players Association and the owners.

As if on cue:

President Trump, in an exclusive interview with “Fox & Friends,” said that NFL owners are “afraid” to act against their players protesting the national anthem at games across the country.

“The NFL is in a box and they have to do something about it,” Trump told Fox News’ Pete Hegseth, in the interview aired Thursday morning.

Trump essentially questioned the owners’ manhood. The owners are wealthy business people. Huge egos. Extremely competitive. They will not resist Trump’s challenge.

Watch for two things before Sunday:

  1. Several owners will break with their teams and the league by threatening to fine or fire any player who refuses to stand for the national anthem.
  2. The NFLPA will issue a statement threatening to strike if any player is fined or fired for disrespecting the flag.

Healing won’t begin until all the pus is out of the zit.

NFL Losing a Laugher (Video)

Reading Time: 1

Blowout. Embarrassment. Lopsided. Laugher.

Humiliation.

Fans are doing to the NFL what Ray Rice did to his girlfriend in that elevator.

Bars are banning football.

The VFW has condemned the NFL. 

Fans are burning jerseys.

American Sniper’s widow livid.

Viewership is down 11% year-over-year.

Fans boo players they recognize.

Baltimore fans demanding Ray Lewis statue come down like he’s General Lee.

Major NFL sponsors are under increasing pressure to pull ads.

The anthem-haters are becoming the biggest sports PR disaster since the Black Sox scandal.

Up Next for the NFL: labor dispute will shorten either 2017 or 2018 season, or both. Owners will take a stand against anthem protests. Players’ union will object. All hell will break loose.

Pass the popcorn. Trump is #winning.