Austin Peterson Attacks Never Trump Movement And It Backfires

In trying to get Trump people on his side to vote for him in Missouri’s U.S Senate election, Austin Peterson decided to go all in on the Trump kool-aid and attack conservatives who were apart of the Never Trump Movement by calling them, “Neo Cons” and “Trotskyites”. He also accused them of supporting Hillary.





This caused many reactions from those who were part of the Never Trump movement and I have to say, it doesn’t end well for Peterson:


I am not sure why Peterson thought this was a good idea. Attacking Never Trump folks will only make it harder to win the senate seat.

Most importantly, it’s sad to see people like Peterson throw their principles just for the votes.




“NevertRump” is SO 2016 – I’m Just a Conservative

It never fails… one word of opposition in a political group, I’m labeled. If I bear a tone of negativity during a discussion about the (current) president, epithets flow. And the most egregious: if I share a link from an actual news organization, I’m branded a “sheeple.”

How ironic.

For the last 18 months, a scarlet hashtag of political exile has become my Château d’If; I am called “nevertrump,” as though I’m a gentile in a land of puritans.

But seriously, the election was nearly a year ago. The height of the #NevertRump movement was last summer, and frankly, it’s SO 2016 – find a new line.

Give me a hyphenated label if you wish, or call me the opposition. But still, I’m just me: a conservative.

And so are millions of others. Including those who held their nose, closed their eyes, tore off their nametags and quietly voted for the most evil of two lessers last November. We are all STILL conservatives,  even if we criticize the president. And refusing to tow the line and “respect the president” after eight years of unified oppugnancy does not make us the polar opposite of our lifelong convictions. We aren’t “liberals” because we speak up for the same principles we once stood for on capitol lawns and in town halls across the country.

I called Obama – scratch that – YOU called Obama “arrogant,” a “liar,” “authoritarian,” and “secretive.” Now, each of those things are ok, because… “GORSUCH!”

How far we’ve come from the simplicity of the original Tea Party Movement. Now, being a consistent conservative is tantamount to being a Democrat. I’ve been called a traitor, and I bet you have too. Some days, it’s easier to be conservative at Berkeley than in a group of trumpublicans.

I have always been a conservative because of the beliefs that fall under its umbrella: small government, personal responsibility, federalism, republican representation, a moral society.

It was never defined by a single man, nor a single party. It wasn’t prescribed by my single mother as she raised me (she’s more moderate than I am), nor did my friends impress their philosophy upon me (I spent my formative years in Portland, OR). I am a conservative because it is my conviction. Therefore, why must I redefine it because of something less significant? He’s just a man.

Whether Donald Trump finishes four years, is impeached after the midterms or resigns sooner (please?), he will one day disappear.  Perhaps some other equally divisive figure will arise, but generally, such populists only come around every 40 or 50 years.

But conservatism is timeless. The principles that this nation were founded on are at least 400 years old. They will never go away,  because human nature is to progress, and conservatism works.

If my intellectual consistency, which occasionally pits me against even fellow conservatives in debate, gives you heartburn, that’s ok. It’s making it a personal attack and rhetorical fistfight that bores me. I get along more with my liberal friends at times because there are no pretenses. We debate methods more than results, and can usually move onto funny movie references or sports talk while “Tea Parties United” folks are still wishing for Senator McCain’s early death or screaming about procedural terms they never knew about before 2014, like “cloture.”


I understand that some of my conservative brethren made a decision to quietly support Trump against Hillary a year ago, even though I thought it was the wrong choice. Millions of us could not do so. But, saying I have an obligation to support this president after years of opposing a liberal one is ridiculous. I haven’t changed. While Trump was still a registered Democrat, donating to Harry Reid, Kamala Harris, and Chuck Schumer, and declaring Democrats as better stewards of the economy, I was the same as I am now: a constitutional conservative.

And I will be in every election forward.

I’m not #NevertRump anymore. That was then. I’m #NeverDishonest with myself. Im consistent. I’m a conservative.  The question should be, after all this, are you?

For The Last Time: Stop Throwing ‘Never Trump’ Delusions In Our Faces

The latest entry in “you must pick a team and cheer” comes from New Republic’s Jeet Heer, who accuses National Review of “surrender to Trump.” Sigh.

For the last time, can we go through this so even a liberal can understand it?

This Sunday, the Patriots play the Falcons in the Super Bowl. I happen to be a lifelong Pats fan (hate me if you want). I am going to cheer for them without regard to who unfriends me on Facebook or unfollows me on Twitter. If the Falcons win, good for them–I live in Georgia and can happily congratulate them for beating the Best Team in Football, Ever.

But if the Patriots win, would I expect those who vehemently despise the BTiF,E to renounce professional football because they won? Because that’s what Heer and all the others (including, sadly, Evan McMullin and the #AlwaysRubio crowd) suggest we do with political reality and our country’s governance.

Trump won.

The executive branch is his to run, as he sees fit, regardless of our histrionics. Either we can be patriotic in the sense that we respect the government of the United States as it exists, or we can be oppositional to the realities of political life. It’s not unpatriotic to call Trump out for his (many) faults, fumbles, and blunders. But it is unpatriotic to start from the position of “I hate Trump and therefore this government is invalid, illegitimate, and deserving of all scorn for anything it does.”

When David French, who flirted with running just to keep Trump from office, writes that the president’s executive order on refugees is right on substance, then the same careful thought and vetting applied to his many #NeverTrump pieces, plus the fact that a Harvard-trained constitutional lawyer who served in the military in Iraq is saying it’s kosher, should be assumed. Instead, we read how anything Trump does is bad, because Trump did it.

We need not agree on the substance of the immigration ban–some think it’s okay to continue bringing in tens of thousands of refugees from countries with known ties to terrorists (as long as it’s not in their back yard). But we need to agree that the president has the authority and ability to set policy under current law. Simply because we disagree on the policy doesn’t give us some new right to cheer those who defy that authority (such as Susan Yates).

Heer, in the last paragraph, is where the sour grapes of #NeverTrump surfaces–invoking Buckley’s embrace of Reagan as a failure of doctrinal purity.

That’s the same dilemma that National Review confronts today. Trump is not a conservative, but he does many things that the right likes—and above all, he’s a Republican. In some ways, National Review is following the trajectory of the party as a whole: Initially doubtful of Trump, but eventually consolidating behind him as the leader of the GOP. Never Trump is increasingly losing any salience as a real political position. While anti-anti-Trump is the current holding position, there’s ample reason to suspect that for many National Review writers, it’ll become something more full-throated: Forever Trump.

No. A million times no.

Trump is not a conservative. And he’s not a Republican either, other than the fact he bears the party label. In no way should Trump have ever hijacked the GOP to his nationalist, populist ends. But he did. The fate of the party itself is yet to be determined. We’re 12 days into Trump’s term, for Pete’s sake, and somehow doctrinal purity is still based on complete opposition or complete subservience to President Trump.

Does that make sense by any measure? It’s a ridiculous and untenable position without any connection to reality.

So, for the millionth and last time.

  1. #NeverTrump is dead, because the election is over.
  2. Trump won. He is president.
  3. When the president (whoever it is) does something that supports conservative values, we should support that particular thing.
  4. We do not all have to agree on every policy move, on the substance or motives, but we can agree to disagree.
  5. Those who oppose Trump simply because he’s Trump are really opposing our form of government, demanding a “do-over” because they don’t like the outcome.
  6. Being formerly #NeverTrump and now call them as we see them is not unpatriotic or somehow compromised–or Forever Trump.

We have to continue to support the American government and our place in the world. We cannot stop loving football because the team we hate won (did we do that with Obama?). We do not have to pick a team and cheer. We can stand for policies and principles without passing some doctrinal purity test based on our opinion of one man.

Those like New Republic who think we ought to take the ball and go home, that somehow we can win a “do-over” and force Trump to leave office are delusional.

If people want to be delusional, that’s fine. Just stop asking us to agree with fantasy.

Time for #NeverTrump to Die

On November 8, the #NeverTrump movement died – or at least it should have. With the election of Donald Trump, the movement premised on him not becoming president became extraordinarily irrelevant. Conservatives who joined the #NeverTrump cause out of conscience or deep seated skepticism of the candidate’s professed embrace of shared principles now risk becoming enablers of liberal ideology by continuing their anti-Trump cause. Anyone who participates in the #NeverTrump crusade post-Election Day would certainly appear to have much in common with the emotionally fragile liberal protesters who march on college campuses declaring that Trump is “not my president.”

Donald J. Trump is the president of the United States. We live in a democratic republic and the people have spoken at the ballot box.

I write this as someone who was #NeverTrump during the brutal GOP presidential primary, and from just before Iowa onward I backed the one Republican candidate who stood between Trump and the GOP nomination. In the days ahead of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland I hoped that delegates would come to their senses and wage some sort of a floor fight that would deny Trump the nomination. Political parties are allowed to have raucous conventions. I predicted that if Trump was the nominee, he was the only person the Republican Party could nominate who could lose to Hillary Clinton.

I was wrong.

As Erick wrote earlier this week, it is time for conservatives to move on from the electoral politics of #NeverTrump and look for ways to constructively contribute to the policy and political debates that lie ahead. #NeverTrump represents the past, and the lows of this election cycle are worth putting behind us.

Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Nebraska) was a leading member of the #NeverTrump movement, and already he has generously and graciously congratulated the Trump team on their win. “My family and I congratulate President-Elect Trump on his decisive victory, and we pray that he will lead wisely and faithfully keep his oath to a Constitution of limited government,” Sasse wrote in a Facebook post after Election Day.

This doesn’t mean that conservatives should stop holding Trump and his team accountable. Far from it. There may be policies that they propose, nominees they may forward to the Senate, and presidential actions that Trump may take that deserve a swift, strong, clear counter by conservatives. If and when those times come, conservatives have an obligation to propose a better way of doing things. It is not enough to cross our arms and declare “not my problem.”

As Jonah Goldberg – also a #NeverTrumper – pointed out in the hours after Trump’s win, “as an American I have every bit as much ownership of his presidency as anyone. And for that reason alone, I hope I’m proven wrong about all of my deep seated concerns and fears.”

Our collective political discourse is only a reflection of our individual civic involvement. That doesn’t mean that we all bear the responsibility of bad decision-making by government officials. It does mean that if we don’t like the tone of this election year, or if we are skeptical of how this new administration will act, we have an individual responsibility to rationally, thoughtfully and respectfully engage in political actions that would influence policy outcomes for the better.

Conservatives skeptical of Trump experienced something unique this election cycle. Suddenly the mainstream media, which long questioned the legitimacy of our views or the sanity of our perspectives, sought some of us out as sages who could impart words of wisdom to our Trump-supporting peers. The platform was welcome, the experience interesting, but make no mistake: media outlets generate views, readership and page clicks by controversy. Continuing to bask in the spotlight that came our way by virtue of our opposition to the Republican nominee, without offering substantive critiques of such media fabricated non-stories like Trump’s dinner without the press, or his possible request of security clearances for some of his children, only serves to empower the Left.

Many #NeverTrump folks argued before the election that citizenship comes before party membership. Now that the nation has spoken, that still remains true. As citizens we should want a Trump administration to be better than what many of us in the #NeverTrump movement imagined it would be (if we ever thought there would be one). It is our civic duty to stop complaining and start doing our part to constructively advance the principles of individual liberty, personal responsibility, limited government and a strong national defense.

Dear Never Trumpers: What If Trump Wins?

President Trump is about to take office on January 20th, 2017. Do you support him? Do you actively work to see his agenda implemented? Or do you hope he fails and you can ride out the next four years to get to 2020?

This letter, a week ago, would have been totally unnecessary, even to the point of hilarity and absurdity. But now things have changed. Donald Trump’s momentum has swung from six feet under to crawling out of the grave, and Hillary Clinton is doing her best to bury herself, which she really did from 2009-2015. Only the crimes have finally started to catch up with her.

If things continue to change at the velocity, vector and acceleration they have in the past week, it’s very possible we could have a President Trump. Now, possible doesn’t mean highly likely, but FiveThirtyEight’s “polls plus” model has Trump’s chances at 30 percent, up from somewhere in the teens last week. That’s a significant movement.

So let’s dispense with the guessing and get to the point here.

I’m a Never Trumper, and I’m writing to other Never Trumpers. We opposed Trump in the primaries. We opposed Trump as the nominee. We opposed Trump as a candidate for president. We’ve called him unfit. We’ve at times predicted his enormous loss. We’ve speculated about him losing every state (at least I have). We’ve flirted with a third party. We’ve supported the independent Evan McMullin as a sane alternative.

What will we do with President Trump?

First, back up a bit. What will we do with a President Hillary Clinton? Why of course, we will oppose her in just about everything. We will fight her agenda; we will hope she fails; we will hope her Supreme Court appointments are permanently shelved. We will criticize her, mock her, and work actively for her impeachment for corruption and gross negligence with classified intelligence.

If that previous paragraph doesn’t describe you, perhaps you should go read Slate. To hear from some of Trump’s supporters, one would think that every Never Trumper is a secret Hillary admirer, but let’s assume you’re like me and oppose Trump for ideological, spiritual, or simply commonsense reasons. If you opposed him simply because you thought he’d lose to Clinton, well, if he wins, you’re just wrong. Live with it.

Most Never Trumpers thought Trump couldn’t beat Hillary. That doesn’t mean we wanted Hillary to win–we just believed she would because Trump is who he is: a vulgar narcissistic cad with a streak of vengeance as wide as the stripe on the skunk’s back.

But now let’s consider him as our president, as a thought experiment, but not too hypothetical, since in 6 days we will know the answer. November 9th, Trump wins. Let’s assume there are no faithless electors (although if Hillary wins, I hope with all my heart there are). Let’s assume the election isn’t thrown into the House of Representatives (we can wish it, but it’s still a long shot).

President Trump is about to take office on January 20th, 2017. Do you support him? Is he your president–as in not the opposition? Do you actively work to see his agenda implemented and to do your best to influence his decisions? Or do you hope he fails and you can ride out the next four years to get to 2020?

This scenario isn’t new. The Democrats had a dark horse in 1976. Jimmy Carter wasn’t a celebrity billionaire who made his fortune in gambling, with a personal life surrounded by super models, beauty pageant queens, and numerous affairs. He was an evangelical in an increasingly secular party, an engineer in a glad-handing political world filled with larger-than-life characters. He was the opposite of Ted Kennedy. And they all hated his grit-eating, Billy Beer slugging, y’all go sit on the porch, slap-yo-momma guts.

Many will hate Trump’s guts. I can’t imagine he’ll get too many smiling meet-and-greets from Speaker Paul Ryan, Sen. Ted Cruz, or Sen. Kelly Ayotte. But as political allies (in party at least) they will have to work together. Will we work together with Trump for four years? Cruz’s seat will come up in 2018, will Trump back him or work to primary him?

Everything I know about Donald Trump tells me he’ll support most Republicans who go along with him. That’s how he is. If they work with him, he’ll work with them. But “working with Trump” means that Trump gets the credit for success, and never the blame for failure. It’s how he operates (is Obama any different?). I don’t believe for a second that Trump will do half the crazy things he promised as a candidate, half because he didn’t really mean them, and half because he has no idea how to do it.

So if Trump wins, he might be somewhat “malleable” as many of his early surrogates believed. At least he’ll be open to influence. Without having to win an election, Trump will be more free to operate at a political level versus a populist agenda. But he won’t stray too far from “the people” because he simply enjoys being worshipped too much.

Will we give him space to operate and grace to govern?

I think we should. I think it would be a mistake to oppose Trump as president. I think it would do egregious harm to the Republican Party and by extension to the cause of conservatives to oppose a President Trump on principle. But I don’t think he should get a free pass either.

Erick Erickson is famous for tagging President George W. Bush when he tried to appoint Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court. This doesn’t mean Erick opposed Bush, but he did hold his president accountable as a conservative and as a Republican. We should treat a President Trump no differently. If Trump decides to use unconstitutional, authoritarian means to achieve his goals, we should call him out. If he nominates a bad choice for the Supreme Court, we should voice our opposition.

If Trump is a thin-skinned jerk in office who takes the slightest criticism as evidence of treason, and uses the levers of government as his personal revenge machine, we should favor the side of justice and righteousness. But he hasn’t done those things yet. Even if we think he will, we must give Trump the benefit of the doubt.

The torch and pitchfork brigades will be extra-vigilant, watching us for any signs of disloyalty. We should let them know that a President Trump is our president too, and that we support him as long as he stands up in the best traditions of Republican presidents. We might expect a Nixon, but we can’t whine and complain if he’s not a Reagan (he’s not, believe me).

If Trump wins, we have a much larger opportunity for healing and unity within our party. It’s better to have Trump in the White House with his wild-eyed, frothing cult members having to observe the decorum of the office than Clinton in the White House and Trump on the outside whipping up discontent in the media. How much better, we don’t know, but it has to be better in some degree, nuclear war being the great equalizer (let’s not go there).

So we’re now Never Trump. Assuming we have cast our vote elsewhere (I’ve heard Peyton Manning, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, and Adele–who isn’t even American, in addition to McMullin), and Trump wins on Nov. 8, we have to decide if we are Never President Trump or just Never Vote Trump.

I think it’s clear we have to move past that question and support him in office. If he wins, it was without us, but if he’ll accept us, we should accept him as president.

Tomorrow, I’ll ask a similar question to Trump supporters.

DR Radio

DR Radio: Election Special Edition

In this edition of Dead Reckoning Radio, we go all out on our 2016 Election coverage. We talk about the reasons for voting, “throwing away” your vote, the candidates on the top of the ticket, and the nature of down-ballot voting. Note: We experienced some technical difficulties during the first commercial break but the audio *does* correct after a few minutes.

For full show notes or to subscribe to the podcast, visit our site.

American Experiment Is Ending As It Began

Absent from the faux-news, feigned outrage and brain-eating filth of Election 2016, lurks the only certain and unavoidable tragedy for mankind. It’s not Donald Trump with the nuclear football. That’s shocking, I know. And ironically enough, it also isn’t the most-corrupt candidate to ever become the nominee of a major American political party. It’s not the greedy banks or those cold-hearted millionaires and billionaires. Can’t blame climate change, or the looming threat of a major foreign war. It isn’t even the absurdity of pretending we are all an androgynous clump of cells until we (fully!) exit the birth canal, and thus deemed worthy of a soul with the ability to choose our ‘true’ gender.

No, perhaps the most tragic, shameful part of it all is that you won’t even hear the real cause for concern on any cable news channel, or discussed on any mainstream website. That’s because the real tragedy of 2016 is much too sophisticated for the mollified, self-obsessed masses to comprehend. And so, while America tears herself apart over the unsavory reflection of our decrepit civilization, our fundamental liberties are silently embezzled by far lesser beings than the force which endows such powers.

“Virtually every aspect of our lives is to some extent or entirely controlled or regulated by the state. At birth our children are forced into the Social Security system and subjugated to a variety of mandatory tests and vaccines. They start out life owing about $55,000, representing their per capita share of the federal debt imposed on them to pay for the campaign promises of dead politicians. Our children are kidnapped from their homes and placed into daytime juvenile detention and propaganda centers (government schools) at age 6.”– James Ostrowski, November 11, 2014 in article titled ‘State of the Progressive America’

And, like all profound tragedies found in libraries of past empires, there is no way we can politically address the problem. Neither Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump can recognize the encroaching threat of tyranny from the balcony of their heavily fortified castle. Therefore, they will only contribute to the vast suffering it will cause. So yes, please, whine about Trump’s insensitive rhetoric. Go ahead and decry the delusional media crusade to assure Hillary is elected, and their complacency in the Soros-funded leftist effort to manipulate U.S. Elections. None of that, or nearly anything else we choose to debate in this country, will rescue even a single child from starvation or spare one moment of pain for those forced into hard labor. That’s what it’s like to live in a country where you do not have the right to liberty– and the world that emerges after the inward collapse of the freest, most powerful and prosperous nation mankind has ever known.pew-poll-candidates

While society caters to the fat, spoiled brats it has created, the dark army of serfdom draws evermore near. There is no escaping the battlefield, we will be made to fight the enemy. With the reemergence of such harsh realities, the divisions once misguidedly obsessed over like party, race, creed or social status will seem petty and infantile. The only ‘privileges’ which exist where America is going will be a roof over your head and food in your belly. We will pay the full price for our reckless stewardship over that which was fair and just in this world. Now the only decision is how great of a price that will be.

So once again, please ask yourself, ‘What kind of a people would choose Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump as their president?’ People like us. All of us. We are all in some way to blame for the state of our lives, our communities, our cities, our states, our country, and this miracle of a planet. The last hope for America can only be seized if individually and collectively, we admit we caused this mess, then accept responsibility for ourselves and our actions going forward. We must return to embracing the very truth on which this nation was conceived: If you do not take ownership over yourself, somebody else will.


Cheers, Football Fans!

Cheers America! Football season has finally arrived. And yet, if your team sucks as bad as mine, it’s time to find a good beer and a reclining chair. But, what is a ‘good’ beer?
To fans of crappy teams everywhere: You’re welcome!

American Blonde Ale: Big Wave Golden Ale, Kona Brewing Company
4.40% ALC
20 IBU
Perfect craft beer for those settling with bud-light. Crisp, light, refreshing but not overly sweet or hoppy.

India/American Pale Ale: [*Overall Winner*] Anti-Hero, Revolution Brewery
6.5% ALC
70 IBU
My favorite hoppy blend. Not too sweet, bitter or dry, with medium body. Easy and enjoyable to drink.

GringoLandia Super-Pils, 5 Rabbit Cerveceria
7.20% ALC
65 IBU
Great upgrade for those who typically drink Budweiser, Miller, etc. Thick yet moderate pilsner.

Imperial Stout:
Americano Stout, Stone Brewery
8.7% ALC
65 IBU
Superior alternative to Guinness. Strong coffee, dark malts flavor. Dry with moderate bitterness.

Yeah, I’d say that’s enough “winning” for Week 1… Stay thirsty, folks:)