To Stop the Train.

I have been using the analogy of pulling the cord to stop the train when it is headed for the cliff, even if you don’t know what happens next. I see that Richard Fernandez has now adopted the analogy.

I don’t see Trump voters as doing anything noble or particularly courageous but it is a risk and many of us are willing to take it.

Fernandez uses the example of Torpedo Squadron 8 which was a factor in the success of the US Navy in the Battle of Midway. John Waldron did not sacrifice his men and his own life voluntarily but he had a mission and he carried it out in spite of everything that stood in his way. The fighters of Fighting 8 that were supposed to provide cover got lost in the confusion. According to Alvin Kernan’s book The Unknown Battle of Midway: The Destruction of the American Torpedo Squadrons, other pilots nearly attacked the leader of Fighting 8 after the battle.

Fernandez uses the sacrifice of Waldron and Torpedo 8 as a metaphor for the 2016 election while remembering the crucial battle fought 74 years ago today.

While the path leading to the present is disputed, no one appears to deny America has now arrived in a critical place whose abnormality is most evident in a contest between two presidential candidates neither of whom is widely supported by their nominating parties. None of the two candidates is actually expected to solve the multiple foreign policy and domestic crises currently besetting the country. In fact one candidate may have helped cause many of the current problems while the other’s main attraction is that he may function as a demolition charge which will clear out the roadblocks that have paralyzed America.

If political columnist Ron Fournier is right about this election cycle, it is less about achieving incremental policy change than precipitating a radical institutional change. In that case the current unpopularity contest can be seen as an deliberate process to increase instability by hoping the worst man wins, not in order to continue the status quo but to tear things down and start afresh.

I think it is more important to stop the trends initiated by Obama and the increasingly radical Democrats than to attempt any serious foreign policy initiative.

the winner of the 2016 contest will likely be a transitional figure rather than a harbinger of a lasting tendency. The winner is more probably going to be overwhelmed by events in this period of flux. But that doesn’t matter. Their task is to stop “the train even if they don’t know what happens next.” And ‘what happens next’ is a question that can only be meaningfully asked once crucial missing piece becomes available. What exactly that is, is unknown.

I have no idea what Trump will do as president but I think it is likely that we will see what that is. Right now, we have to get America moving again and to defend the country from the increasingly unstable and radical elements of the Democrats. China and Russia are both heading into their own rough waters. We have the opportunity to make ourselves immune from the energy crisis that has bedeviled our policies since 1979. To try to understand the behavior of the American Ruling Class right now, I am reading, The Collapse of Complex Societies. Maybe that will help me to understand the seemingly insane policies of the global warming crowd.

The future is a blank slate. We cannot know it, especially in a time like this when logic and common sense seem to be obsolete.

13 thoughts on “To Stop the Train.”

  1. Good analogy. His presence has already energized people, like I haven’t seen since…maybe Reagan? The built in stumbling blocks and trap-doors will be difficult and daunting, but if he’s able to keep his word, and just accomplish a few simple things initially, it’ll go a long ways toward restoration.

  2. Re. Trump supporters attacked and intimidated at rallies: I’m waiting, expecting any time now (sarc), for Dept. of Justice ordered investigations into general thuggery, and possibly organized conspiracies, aimed at the abridgement of the civil liberties of Trump supporters.

    Nah, freedom of assembly and speech just aren’t that important to this administration.

  3. In that case the current unpopularity contest can be seen as an deliberate process to increase instability by hoping the worst man wins, not in order to continue the status quo but to tear things down and start afresh.

    Yes, increasingly the American people want to see the Washington DC establishment power structure burned to the ground.

  4. I may look into “The Collapse of Complex Societies”. I just finished “1177 BC; the Year Civilization Collapsed” by Eric Cline, while examines the end of the Late Bronze Age civilizations all over the eastern Mediterranean.

    We are in a not dissimilar situation.

    Going back to “Wretchard” Fernandez’ metaphor; which of us will be Waldron’s Torpedo 8, and which will be Wade McClusky’s Bombing 6 and Scouting 6? Or will we be Major Loftus Henderson’s Marine Scouting 241?

  5. You either prefer to preserve what is unique about America, or you don’t. You either prefer the Bill of Rights, or you don’t. You either prefer America as a sovereign nation, or you don’t. If you prefer these things then you have only one choice in November. The rest are paid shills. These, things, especially American sovereignty, are incompatible with the interests of the skimming class; the global elites and financial corporatists. This is why nobody else has stepped up to coopt the Trump message; the usual paymasters aren’t about to ante up.

  6. “especially in a time like this when logic and common sense seem to be obsolete” I assume you consider yourself logical and have common sense (nice virtue signaling) despite your complete inability to foresee Trumps rise …

    maybe, just maybe you are a alittle weak in the logic department and you most certainly fail the common sense test when it comes to Trump …

    keep read books about past events in the desperate hope that you can predict what Trump will do … good luck with that … maybe you should read Trumps book first … he tells you exactly what he is doing …

  7. ““1177 BC; the Year Civilization Collapsed” by Eric Cline,”

    I have a copy and it is on my reading pile.

    “Anonymous” says “maybe you are a a little weak in the logic department ”

    Speaking of virtue signaling…..

  8. Thanks for the book tip. I will add it to my list. I know a group that claim they’re descended from the Sea Peoples, who they believe came from Western Europe.

  9. I saw this theory a few weeks ago proposing that the Sea Peoples were really the Trojans from Homer’s Iliad.

    It’s entirely plausible that some came from the northern shores of the Mediterranean or the Aegean. I’ve read some conjectures that others came from Sardinia or even the south of France.

  10. My vote for a Trump vs. Establishment analogy would be Boris Yeltsin. Quit the Politboro and his Party and came back to become the face of the opposition to an encrusted and hopelessly corrupted 75 year regime with such bellicosity and unconventionality (standing on a tank aimed at the party HQ I believe) that it led to a coup and fall of the USSR. As Trump would be, he too was a transitional figure and his Presidency went downhill quickly after that. But having lived my youth during the Cold War – I’d say it was a fair trade.

  11. I keep seeing that we don’t know what Trump will do. Well, although that may be true, we do know what Hillary will do, which is more of the same. The Democrats have decided it’s time to make the constitution read the way it would if they had written it and they’re breaking all the rules, in the hope that the country will end up so bad we’ll have to completely re-write the constitution their way.

    We have 2 choices, we can elect Hillary and watch the destruction continue, or we can elect Trump and pray. Personally, I’d prefer the later.

  12. > keep seeing that we don’t know what Trump will do.

    Agree with that, but past behavior isn’t encouraging. I’ll go out on a limb and project that, in the absence of “events”, Trump will lose the election. My reasoning is based on the observation that every Democrat starts with a base vote of about 45% and the following characteristics of Trump and his campaign.

    * High negatives
    * No campaign organization
    * No money
    * Shallow knowledge of events
    * Little demonstrated executive ability
    * Out of control mouth
    * Closeted skeletons

    I think that Trump is preferable to Hillary, but even so, he needs to be elected.

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