1964, 2016.

The RINO establishment’s Trumpophobia (Trump derangement syndrome) in 2016 is practically identical to the anti-Goldwater hysteria of the “Rockefeller Republicans” in 1964, right down to insane rhetoric, baseless accusations, and the threats not to vote for him. Goldwater was a direct existential threat to the establishment’s cozy arrangement between the New Deal Democrats and the “me-too-but-slower” Republicans. Likewise Trump — but not Cruz, Kasitch or Rubio — is a threat to the cozy arrangement between the social democrats and the RINOs which greatly benefit the political class and the donor class at the expense of the taxpayers.

1968, 2016

No, the cancellation of the Trump rally Friday night on the downtown campus of the University of Illinois is not an exact rerun of the Chicago riots at the Democrat Convention in 1968. For one thing, the Democrats could not call off the Convention, as Trump called off the rally, out of concern for the safety of the people on both sides.

However, the disruption of the event by the protesters is a significant “shot across the bow,” a reminder of the Left’s idea of “free speech” versus ours. I guess they do not teach Voltaire in school anymore; I may disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it. It was obvious that neither the protestors nor the media understand the First Amendment; free speech is not the same thing as your “right” to keep others from speaking, and the freedom of assembly is not the same thing as your “right” to keep others from assembling, by threatening or actually committing violence:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

In 1964 the same rabble savaged U.C. Berkeley, NOT in the name of the “free speech movement” to protest the Vietnam war or the draft (neither had quite kicked into high gear yet, not for another year) but for the right to shout obscenities as part of their speeches to the public. In 1968 they did protest the war and the draft, but they also provoked the police to retaliate with excessive force which itself was reason for more violent protest and confrontations. Was that ever great for the ratings… (As a result, Nixon was elected President with the help of the “hard hats,” a precursor of the “Reagan Democrats” in 1980.)

I think Trump made a serious tactical error in canceling the rally. He missed a chance to stand up for the First Amendment. His staff has also demonstrated a serious lapse in competence by failing to make sure that protestors and disruptors are not issued tickets to get inside the venue.

At best Trump managed to demonstrate the Left’s, the University’s, the student body’s and the Chicago public’s hypocrisy on free speech and tolerance. Instead, he handed the rabble an undeserved victory, which will only embolden them to repeat and escalate. Did he gain popular support from this show of concern for public safety? Not in my book. What’s he going to do, never go out in public and campaign in front the cameras from now on, out of fear for the public’s safety?

1980, 2016

Those of us who lived through the Carter years do not need to be told about the parallels between Carter and 0bama, the depression and malaise of the Carter and 0bama years, and the popular reaction in 1980 to Carter’s gross incompetence and in 2016 to 0bama’s deliberate subversion a.k.a. “fundamental transformation.”

The question is whether Trump in 2016 will turn out to be like Reagan in 1980. It is obvious that Hillary and Bernie are nothing more than Carter reincarnate, except more so. It is also obvious that it is Trump — but not Cruz, Kasitch or Rubio — who generates the badly needed enthusiasm for rejecting the Democrat-RINO establishment and their entrenched special interests (Michael Savage’s Demicans and Republicrats).

If Trump in 2016 is to become what Reagan was in 1980, he will have to study Reagan’s speeches (see speeches of Ronald Reagan – Search results – Wikipedia), as well as Ayn Rand’s The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged, so he will understand his place on the spectrum between a philosophical leader who can explain his decisions to the public, and a practical leader who can successfully lead the public to act on those decisions. But for now, it is obvious that Trump is no Reagan (‘we knew Ronald Reagan, he was a great friend of ours; and you, Mr. Trump, are no Ronald Reagan’), and he certainly is not a Howard Roark or a John Galt. We have yet to see if in today’s political environment a Dagny Taggart or a Francisco D’Anconia can even become President (see List of Atlas Shrugged characters – Wikipedia; see also The Fountainhead, Atlas Shrugged), or if in 2016 we will again go down to defeat with solid establishment candidates as Bush in 1992, Dole in 1996, McCain in 2008 and Romney in 2012. It’s time to get out of the death spiral of the last 24 years.