I can understand Aaron's argument - that certain ideas won't play in America - in the abstract. But, frankly speaking, the application leaves me a bit dumbfounded. If the examples of presidents "refreshing our institutions to address new challenges" equate to upending the constitutional order, which indeed Lincoln and Roosevelt did, then why would anything be off the table?

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Listen to how Lincoln and FDR talked about what they were doing.

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Having of late discovered the work of Christian and historian David Barton, and before that deeply moved to get active locally in politics here in suburban Phoenix because of Pastors like Rob McCoy, Rick Brown, Voddie Baucham, and writers and pod casters like Eric Metaxas, it certainly seems that the Author enjoys all the fruits of a warm comfortable den to do his heavy contemplations, because he doesn't appear to have spent much time lately in the mean streets or the soup kitchen of any major American city recently.

Not at least since George Bush was doing his pedestrian routine on conservative compassion in New Orleans. Does this new secular barb of a name interfere with your advanced pursuit of Bridge Playing or Crypto investment? Just what wart on your fanny prompted these sagacious distinctions?

And given that since we lost Reagan to Demetia and the nation found itself saddled with the Bush Dynasty, a disaster that arrived with the beginning of the precipitous decline of middle class opportunity, an opportunity likewise battered by another dynasty - the Clintons which followed - whose willingness to sell this country short (as recognized by both Pat Buchanan and Ross Perot) only accelerated once he welcomed China into the WORLD TRADE ORG - and as Trump proved and Steve Bannon continues to elucidate to the nations favor, just how much pain, misery and back to the seventies inflation and insane spending - all due to the unnecessary de-industrializing of America under the ruse of 'free trade' and the unimaginable THEFT of our country into the coffers of privileged few -just what do you need to convince a time out off the hobby horse?

What 'double downs' are you considering? Another 10 trillion in debt by this time next year? Or just plain stupid? Or that Israel loses its first war due in part to the likes of these feckless idiots helping Obama re-establish his fetish that Persia get its just historical props?

Simply put. I don't have any idea what hour you believe we're living in. And as a Christian, what country.

What you fail to understand is Populism rising doesn't care what the coarse secularists on either side of the isle name us. We are going to save this country. With or without you brother.

Why not try and put AMERIFEST on your radar. It's only a little more than a month away. Try it. It just might cure your brain freeze.

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What we should pray for and work for is National Repentance.

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Nov 1, 2023Liked by Aaron M. Renn

The Distributist (Dave Greene) had a take I liked about a month ago and even mentioned yourself in it. It starts at 1:11:30 and goes to 1:43:30 I think. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WOnsEGvgvpM&t=4290s

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Somewhat related on his YouTube, I absolutely love his "C.L.E.A.R." concept.

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I’m not sure what Christian Nationalism is despite all the attempts to describe it or deride it. But what I do take exception to is that we are not facing crises as bad as the Civil War or the Depression. This is not an apocalyptic scenario. Those crises were more overt while ours today is more insidious. Legalized infanticide (abortion) is the slavery issue of our time. But unlike slavery the Civil War and the resulting 14th Amendment brought the nation together. The Dobbs decision - while I applaud it - has and will continue to drive the states apart.

Legalized infanticide is the linchpin of the progressive left. As women are deluded into murdering their infants in the womb they have begun more unhinged from marriage and family. Men escape the responsibility of marriage and the sexes are pinned against each other. Sexual perversion is mainstream and is being institutionalized by law. Natural families are becoming rarer and is resulting in more civilization chaos. If this nation does survive it will be if we come to the realization that unborn babies are human beings that are protected by the Constitution.

If not, the nation will end not in a bang, but with a whimper.

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Roe was far more destructive than ever thought but I would argue that the post 80's Simpson/Mazzoli effect is greatly misunderstood. Abortion - particularly the destructive costs in the black community - where coupled with crime and outright death by (mostly fellow blacks who then go to prison) - is such a major factor in the Californication approach to convert unbridled immigration into the free-for-all 'migration' that the Uniparty has pushed since 2000.

Secularization - via Feminism and the Sexual Revolution - all abetting the kind assault on the two parent family - the destruction we have known of for decades now - has given rise to a resurgent virulent and violent progressivism that mimics the most extreme radicalism that existed in the 60's movements - but now are funded by billionaires (Soros, Omidyar, Zuckerberg, Bloomberg) and instituted as much by Academia & Think Tanks as they are by Centralized National Government in Washington once Democrats hold power.

Since Trump they have pushed the nation into a quazi or even post-constitutional America.

It is a real question if we can land the leadership - and see a renewed vitalization of Congress and the Supreme Court - to restore us to a sane and stable Republic again.

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I think I generally agree with Aaron's position. Which is to say, in spite of everything, I'm still ultimately some sort of conservative. It's better to conserve what is good about American tradition than to pursue some radical program that argues for tossing all of it, from Washington on down. And also, it just seems like bad politics to embrace a label that is both imprecise and essentially a smear.

Though definitions are critical here, and I think it behooves anyone entering into this debate to be extremely clear what he is supporting or opposing.

Initially, I believe the term was used largely to describe what you might think of as "MAGA Christianity," and some people still use it this way, epitomized by the image of Trump speaking at First Baptist Dallas, or various borderline-sacrilegious memes casting Trump as savior. Though prior to Trump, you might think of a Baptist church that celebrates the Fourth of July as if it were Christmas or Easter, festooning itself in US flags and singing "The Star-Spangled Banner" and "God Bless America" among the hymns.

By the left's most expansive definition/slur, I think a Christian Nationalist is anyone right-of-center who argues for Christian values playing some role in the governance of the nation. By this definition, I would imagine Aaron is a Christian Nationalist, as am I, as, at one time, was David French. Most of us are reluctant to own the CN label by this definition, but we do want to be able to assert that, yes, our fundamental values DO inform our politics, and yes, there is very deep basis for this in American and Western tradition, and no, Current Year secular values are NOT rational or impartial.

Nowadays, internal to conservative Christianity, it seems the term is most often understood to apply to Wolfe's book and philosophy. Which, though I've only read reviews of it, apparently has a somewhat negative view of what I'm calling "MAGA Christianity." So it's not surprising that some people thought Aaron's piece was a direct reference to Wolfe. But as I understand it, it's still a sort of indirect reference to Wolfe, or at least those inclined to his general direction of thinking.

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'Nowadays, internal to conservative Christianity, it seems the term is most often understood to apply to Wolfe's book and philosophy.'

These kinds of semantic sideshows are just opportunities for the likes of Rod Dreher and his ilk to profit the secularists attacks on the faithful - and to aid and abet a further decline in faithfulness. What are this people most afraid of? Revival pure and simple. David Barton and Wallbuilders, besides participating in exciting Supreme Court wins (yes important ones beyond Dobbs) has observed that all of America's great Revivals have been local not national.

I believe that is happening, and particularly was breaking out from '16 to '18, unitl Covid and why the Powers in Washington were so unrelenting to destroy Trump from day one - and yet with all those headwinds and turmoil - he and his policy delivered relative global peace - energy independence - and rising wages and standards of living - while destroying most progressive shibboleths - all way deeper and faster than Reagan in his 2 terms.

These revivals have been local and muted in part by how frightened many have been conditioned to live - not just covid - but widespread fear that the Church incorporated to internalize disavowing Politics - a cowardly phase no longer acceptable given the needs of the faithful and the needs of the nation.

Everything has changed. Does Musk bother to buy twitter and deliver X - without Trump?

Does Tucker Carlson even exist without Trump? There is no turning back to the Bush wing, exhibited by this primary and the BILLIONS OF $$$ thrown at the loser class of the consultants for the past thirty years.

We will have Trump in the White House - despite the efforts Dems have financed with many billions more than those wasted on the likes of Desantis, Haley, and Scott - the 'kebbler eleves' as Bannon calls them.

Now no sabotage with Paul Ryan, who deviously refused America 1st, or the weakness of McCarthy, who couldn't raise to the effort. Mike Johnson is smart, openly Christian, young and capable. The freedom caucus has seasoned vets and way better moderates than anything Gingrich had. These inter party fights may prove to be just the ingredient needed to foster the most productive conservative coalitions since the post-Civil War.

Have faith. It is more like 1942 - than Orwell's 1984.

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How would you answer the objection that you need rewrite that one line that as, " It *would have been* better to *have conserved* what is good about American tradition"?

Or, as the more flamboyant phrase puts it: "What use are conservatives? They couldn't even conserve girls' bathrooms!"

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Nov 2, 2023·edited Nov 2, 2023Liked by Aaron M. Renn

I'm an optimist by temperament, and so when I'm just going about my daily life (which to be accurate is pretty fine a la Spouting Thomas) I feel pretty much like Aaron does.

But when I stop and really look at things, I see where the pessimists are coming from. To take just one example, it's not simply the current transgender mania, but rather the force of government increasingly being wielded on the side of the maniacs... yeah that's *not* recognizably the America I grew up in.

So I'd re-ask my question and request that we look, not with a static analysis viewpoint like Spouting's (e.g. "America is still the richest and freest major country in the world. Including freedoms for Christians", which statement I fully agree with FWIW), but rather dynamically: *what is our trajectory*? Looked at from that perspective, I find it somewhat harder to be hopeful. [Edited to add: and then I go back to my daily life and resume feeling pretty good about things.]

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Nov 1, 2023·edited Nov 1, 2023Liked by Aaron M. Renn

Again, agree with Aaron.

My experience with nonreligious people is that they're generally unable to perceive grace. Maybe especially in this era and among my generation (Millennials) -- everything is "crapsack world", despite living very easy lives. It's all so tedious.

But a lot of Christian conservatives seem to have the same blinders when it comes to politics. Unable to see past the degeneracy and decadence to what is still good. America is still the richest and freest major country in the world. Including freedoms for Christians. We also are spoiled for choice of options for worship.

Conservatives have lost more than we've won. Conservatism needs to improve. But this has been an era of rapid technological change. A lot was always going to change. A lot is STILL going to change. So conservatives are naturally on the defensive.

I suppose I also tend to think in terms of civilizations having an arc. If you're Constantine, looking at the Roman Empire circa 330 AD, the idea, "Hey, we've declined a lot, we should go back to the way we were during the Punic Wars," just isn't on the table. Nor is any other radical reform of society, really (the Christianization is the closest thing, but that's proceeding organically). But there's still value in trying to conserve what still works in the Imperial administrative system for as long as possible. There's value in being the Byzantines instead of the Visigoths.

Radical reforms almost always fail. The USSR is what extraordinary success looks like. Someone wrote an alternate history called "The Thousand-Week Reich", and that's the phrase that sticks in my head. If all of Hitler's dreams of success in WW2 came true, the Thousand-Week Reich is the much likelier endpoint than the Thousand-Year Reich. If, by some extraordinary chain of events, America adopts a theonomist constitution, or any other radical rightist idea for reorganizing society, I'm inclined to think that it will be lucky to survive a thousand weeks. And what follows will probably be worse than what we have now, or what we'll naturally have in a few decades' time.

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'Conservatives have lost more than we've won. Conservatism needs to improve.'

You are either too busy to see or a backward 'hopium' Anti-Trumper - improvement is here - by way of the calvary at the 4th turning. Here in Arizona they (Godless secular Dems) used 2020 as a trial run to 'double down' (borrowing a favorite Rennism) in 2022 - and unlike in places like Colorado, or Pennsylvania, or even Michigan, or Georgia, (because in both Wisconsin and Nevada there are continuing fights with real progress) Arizonians fight - (not just Andy Biggs, Paul Gosar & Eli Crane) and the fight by way of court cases, while not giving entire satisfaction to depose an illegit regime, the public disclosure has been vital - and despite an establishment determined to lose their way into a comfortable position - and alucrative one in Washington - there are still vital organizations like Kirks TURNING POINT ACTION here that can be difference makers.

We are going to win in Arizona - using what Louisiana has just done - and with this new Christian House Speaker - Trump is coming back. In Arizona we will in part out vote the cheat by way of new 20's, 30's and Fortysomethings - THROUGH VOTER REGISTRATION DRIVES IN DOZENS UPON DOZENS OF FAITHFUL CHURCHES IN THE MOST FAITFUL STATE IN THE UNION...the disillusioned and battered who will vote their values & pocketbooks & children's futures. (way north of the 250k ballots left uncounted in part by election interference)

In part - using the very DROP BOXES the Dems abused us with in 2K Mules.... many in those church parking lots.

Why? Because of MAGA - and - BECAUSE GOD IS IN CHARGE

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The United States is still recognizably itself, despite many changes that have occurred.

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Because Christian nationalism is ONLY possible in the New Heavens and New Earth, when human sin no longer has a role. Otherwise, it is a manipulative pipe-dream of those that think that they are more wise, elite, pure than more common Christians. Essentially showing themselves to be infested with Pride, and Arrogance. Only God (at this point in time) can discern the true condition of someone's heart, and many are much better liars, deceivers than others, and as 2 Peter 2 warns against, the worst ones are the wolves among the sheep.

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Brother you really need an education on the history of this country before Eisenhower made his self-avowed 'worst mistake' as President and appointing Earl Warren as Chief Justice. There is a good reason why Democrats are so deep into Lawfare with Trump and dozens of others, and they are desperate to try and find some way cheat on elections and try and pack the Supreme Court (or at least discredit Clarence Thomas and his wife non-stop) and have already laid the groundwork to try and Nationalize elections and transfer the franchise to the tens of millions that have been invading since Biden occupied DC with 30k National Guard under the false pretense of an 'insurrection' where nobody in the most armed federal republic in the worlds history even brought a BB Gun.

Yes it's disturbing that avowed Christian faith and participation has dropped. But, as wretched as we all are, WE ARE THE MOST FAITHFUL OF DEVELOPED DEMOCRACIES - AND WHAT HAS GONE DOWN AND RISE YET AGAIN.

Pray for it. It can and will be answered.

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As I said, it isn't possible in a depraved world.

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'can rise again' - sorry.

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