National Review’s Neocons and The Bulwark’s Bidenistas: Reviling Trump, Rejoicing in Biden

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National Review’s Neocons and The Bulwark’s Bidenistas: Reviling Trump, Rejoicing in Biden


By William F. Jasper


Olga Khazan, a reporter for The Atlantic, sat in as an invited observer for an Election Night Zoom panel of a certain media organization. Her report will serve as an eye-opener for many conservatives and Republicans. As the evening progressed and President Trump won Florida and appeared to be leading Biden in North Carolina, the panelists were muttering, moaning, and cursing. When it appeared that Biden might also be losing Pennsylvania, anxiety turned into desperation, dread, and despair. The thought of losing Pennsylvania to Trump was just too much to bear. A prominent panelist cried out: “Right now, we are facing the possibility of not only not getting that, but having that f***er in office for four years!” (Though, naturally, The Atlantic, being a liberal-left, virulently anti-Trump publication — and thoroughly sophisticated to boot — didn’t bother to bleep the expletive, as we have done above.)


No, Khazan was not sitting in with Rachel Maddow, Joy Reid, and Joe Scarborough for MSNBC. Nor was she with Don Lemon, Anderson Cooper, and Brooke Baldwin at CNN — or any of the other Big Media mouthpieces that President Trump rightly denounced as Fake News and “enemies of the American people.” She was reporting from the Election Night meltdown at The Bulwark, Bill Kristol’s latest neoconservative, online venture. And the f-bombing individual was The Bulwark’s policy editor, Mona Charen, one of the most venomous Never-Trumpers, which therefore qualifies her as a “responsible” conservative in the eyes of the leftists and globalists who run Big Media. Khazan was observing the meltdown via remote video hookup as an invitee to the home of Charen.


Rooting for Biden and Dems; Hoping GOP Loses Senate


Mona Charen, like many of her neoconservative colleagues at National Review, The Bulwark, and Jonah Goldberg’s more recently launched vanity publishing effort, The Dispatch, has been a fixture among the chattering classes of Big Media for decades: syndicated columnist (carried by mostly “progressive” newspapers); CNN commentator; and guest on network talking-head programs. She currently hosts The Bulwark’s “Beg to Differ” podcast. Not all of the neocon Never-Trumpers have gone as far as Mona Charen and Bill Kristol (shown). They and much of their Bulwark crew not only hate Trump — passionately — but have gone so far as to root for Biden, endorse Biden, vote for Biden, even campaign for Biden. According to The Atlantic’s Olga Khazan, “Charen even phone-banked for Biden” and “even voted for Democrats in down-ballot races this year.”


Khazan expressed surprise at Charen’s profane outburst. “This surprised me because although the Bulwarkers had been dropping more f-bombs as more states went for Trump, Charen, a nice Jewish woman in her 60s, seemed too prim for that,” she wrote. “She had done her makeup and dressed in a blazer. She had corralled her dog, Ike — like Dwight D. Eisenhower — away from the camera. She had made printouts of various polls and bellwether counties.”


“I want the Republican Party to feel spanked, so that it reforms and makes a U-turn,” she told Khazan. Hmm. What kind of “reform” does the rankled pundit have in mind? And a “U-turn” from what? Well, we can suggest that among the many things she has in mind is expelling all the Trump deplorables from the Grand Old Party and restoring the glory days of the Bush dynasty — along with its embrace of globalism, the United Nations, Big Government, perpetual war, more taxes, more regulation, expanded immigration, expanded “refugee” acceptance, and continued GOP surrender on abortion, gun rights, LGBTQ issues, China trade, and environmental extremism. In other words, she and her fellow neocons want to restore all of the things that alienated millions of Republicans who have been brought back to the party (along with many Democrats) by Trump’s “America First” MAGA policies and rhetoric, which the internationalist-minded neocons despise.


The Romney, McCain, Bush, Kasich RINOs


“If a more typical Republican runs in 2024, people like Charen may simply migrate back to the GOP — she’s fond of Senator Mitt Romney and Maryland Governor Larry Hogan,” Khazan writes. Yes, the Romney-Hogan-Bush-McCain-Collins “moderates” have always been the prescription of the neocons. Real conservatives (also known as paleocons) and constitutionalists have long regarded the neocons as fake conservatives, RINOs (Republican In Name Only), and Democrat-Lite. Like “progressive” Democrats, ACLU activists, and most denizens of the Left, neocons like to sing hymns of praise to the U.S. Constitution, while simultaneously promoting policies that undercut its restraints on government and its protections of liberty.


Before Trump, Charen, Kristol, and their coterie of Beltway neocons ruled the roost — not only as the senior “thought leaders” of the GOP, but also as the favored pundits of the Fake News media so despised by President Trump and his growing throng of followers. For the past four years, however, the Never Trump neocons have been knocked from their prideful perches and exiled, relegated to irrelevance. That has been a blow too low. “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned,” playwright William Congreve famously noted, and the banished neocons have nourished their rejection into a hellish wrath.


Since November 3, the faux conservative pundits at The Bulwark, National Review, and The Dispatch have been working in tandem with their boon companions at the New York Times, Washington Post, CNN, PBS, NBC, and the rest of the Big Media herd to convince America that Biden-Harris beat Trump-Pence in a “free, fair, secure” election. Like the Fake News outlets, they rushed to falsely hail Joe Biden as “president-elect,” ignoring the fact that he could only legitimately be referred to as such if and when that title is officially bestowed upon him. The Electoral College, not Fox News, the Associated Press, or National Review-Bulwark-Dispatch, makes that call. Writers and editors for the neocon apparatuses have done their best to ratify the stolen election and to sneer at every effort by the Trump campaign to demonstrate massive voter fraud.


Parroting the Fake-news Narrative


National Review editor Rich Lowry must be taking immense pleasure at the prospect of seeing his antagonist, President Trump, being evicted (Lowry hopes) from the White House. In his syndicated column for November 30, entitled “Trump’s ugly exit not unexpected,” Lowry wrote: “No one expected Donald Trump to handle a defeat in the 2020 election well. It was predictable he’d deny that he really lost and allege the vote was rigged, that he’d tweet wild and misleading things, and that he’d lash out in absurd and sophomoric ways.”


“All that was inevitable,” said Lowry. “What’s been more disturbing is how far he and his allies have been willing to push it, not content only to delegitimize the election, but actively seeking to invalidate it.” Like his liberal-left counterparts in Big Media, Lowry scoffed at Trump’s charges of election fraud and claimed the president is disseminating “a constant flow of bad information and conspiracy theories.”


On the same day, November 30, “The Editors” of National Review (presumably including Rich Lowry) issued a similar collective attack entitled “Trump’s Disgraceful Endgame.” The NR editors slammed “Trump’s disgraceful conduct since losing his bid for reelection to Joe Biden on November 3.” Disgraceful? How? Well, he has refused to concede to Joe Biden, who has already been anointed and crowned — by the media. “The president can’t stand to admit that he lost and so has insisted since the wee hours of Election Night that he really won — and won ‘by a lot,’” says the editorial collective.


“There are legitimate issues to consider after the 2020 vote,” say the editors, “but make no mistake: The chief driver of the post-election contention of the past several weeks is the petulant refusal of one man to accept the verdict of the American people. The Trump team (and much of the GOP) is working backwards, desperately trying to find something, anything to support the president’s aggrieved feelings, rather than objectively considering the evidence and reacting as warranted.”


Big Media Echo Chamber: “No Evidence,” “Baseless”


As we have detailed in these pages and online, the evidence of blatant election fraud on an unprecedented, massive scale should be more than sufficient to convince all but the willfully blind that there is good reason to challenge the results. Nevertheless, the National Review scribblers declare: “Almost nothing that the Trump team has alleged has withstood the slightest scrutiny. In particular, it’s hard to find much that is remotely true in the president’s Twitter feed these days. It is full of already-debunked claims and crackpot conspiracy theories about Dominion voting systems.”


“Trump’s most reprehensible tactic,” National Review insists, “has been to attempt, somewhat shamefacedly, to get local Republican officials to block the certification of votes and state legislatures to appoint Trump electors in clear violation of the public will.” Reprehensible? How so? It is his duty, as president, to employ all legal, moral, constitutional avenues to ensure that the election was truly fair and free of massive corruption.


“Getting defeated in a national election is a blow to the ego of even the most thick-skinned politicians and inevitably engenders personal feelings of bitterness and anger,” the editors write, before concluding with this swipe: “What America has long expected is that losing candidates swallow those feelings and at least pretend to be gracious. If Trump’s not capable of it, he should at least stop waging war on the outcome.”


Yes, they insist, Trump’s refusal to concede is solely about ego. It is an editorial that would have been at home at the New York Times, The Atlantic, The Daily Beast, or any of the other myriad belchers of anti-Trump vitriol. Well, Lowry and “The Editors” at National Review know a thing or two about ego, bitterness, and anger; and their smoldering anger against Donald Trump is finally giving way to full rage. Lowry, who is also a columnist for left-leaning Politico and a welcome guest on all the establishment media gabfests, launched the hate-Trump neocon vendetta with a 2016 special issue of National Review dedicated to “Against Trump.” It featured more than 20 neocon luminaries, from Lowry, Bill Kristol, and syndicated columnist Cal Thomas, to Ben Domenech, publisher of The Federalist, Yuval Levin, editor of National Affairs, and John Podhoretz, editor of Commentary. After four years in exile, they are more than ready to reclaim their spots as the controlled opposition, the Judas goats that lead conservatives into gradual acceptance of all that is the antithesis of the beliefs they once held dear.


The neocons, who fashion themselves as “intellectual conservatives,” despise not only Trump and Trump supporters, but all of the ordinary, hardworking, common-sense conservatives of middle America, rural America, and small-town America. Like the Beltway Democrat-Left, the neocons have nothing in common with the conservative residents of Red State “flyover country,” or with the hapless inhabitants trapped inside the increasingly oppressive, Democrat-controlled, Blue State hellholes. They gleefully support Biden-Harris in order to rid themselves of Trump-Pence, and then, they expect, to resume their rightful places as the babbling brain trust that will help the Republican Party “reform” itself into a pale reflection of the party of Obama-Clinton-Pelosi, and continue to “gracefully” surrender on all fronts.


Their desperation to regain power is evinced in their relentless attacks on Trump, which compete with CNN and MSNBC for intensity and spleen. According to National Review’s Michael Brendan Dougherty, Trump “represents a social-media age, which fixes a digital sewage pipe to the brains of every single person on earth and allows the mental diarrhea to gush upon an unready world.”


In a November 24 article snidely titled “It’s Only ‘Free and Fair’ When We Win,” National Review senior writer and syndicated columnist David Harsanyi declares: “There is no credible evidence Barack Obama is a foreigner. There is no credible evidence that Donald Trump was a Russian asset. And so far, there is no credible evidence that widespread cheating gave Joe Biden the presidency this year.”


Obsessed With Opposing “Conspiracy Theory.”


So it goes also over at The Dispatch, where Jonah Goldberg, Stephen Hayes, David French, and other assorted comrades from National Review and The Weekly Standard (Bill Kristol’s former bilge dispenser before founding The Bulwark) are celebrating what they hope will be President Trump’s ouster and the new Neocon Age under Biden-Harris. Yuval Levin, in a December 14 post titled “The Path Back from Conspiracy,” tells Dispatch readers: “It should be no surprise that [Trump] is now concluding his presidency by insisting the election was stolen and beckoning his supporters down a rabbit hole of unreality and grievance. Trump has been our conspiracy monger in chief, and this has brought into sharp relief the illusion at the heart of a certain kind of populist disposition.”


In a December 11 post, titled “Release the Kraken,” Goldberg couldn’t contain his loathing of Trump lawyer Sidney Powell and the voters, governors, congressmen, state legislators, and state attorney generals that are supporting the president’s challenges of election fraud. Goldberg, a pompous, preening poseur, charges that Powell and her supporters swim in the “fetid waters” of an “ocean of conspiratorial groupthink.” Not only are they imbeciles and paranoid conspiratorialists, says Goldberg, but they are also contemptible cowards for not standing against Trump rather than for him. “But the cowardice is so much worse than that,” Goldberg continues. “Right now, people are threatening to kill election officials. People who believe Limbaugh, Hannity, Metaxas, and the Pillow Dude are showing up with guns at the homes of local officials.” Then, as if to prove his point, he linked to a story from The Phoenix Times, a far-left “alternative news” tabloid that breathlessly reported on the Arizona GOP’s retweet of a militant tweet by someone named “Ali.” What did Ali say? Referring to the “Stop the steal” effort on vote fraud, Ali said, “I am willing to give my life for this fight.” Melodramatic perhaps, but hardly the same as “threatening to kill election officials,” as Goldberg claims. Yet, Goldberg joins The Daily Beast, The Phoenix Times, and the rest of the national media in pouncing on this nothing-burger as dispositive evidence that President Trump and his supporters are very, very dangerous miscreants that are inciting murder of the opposition.


Yes, we could all benefit if all sides would dial back the inflammatory rhetoric. But the civility scolds have zero credibility. Goldberg — like his progressive colleagues at CNN and MSNBC, where he is a regular commentator — seem to wet their pants in fear at every edgy tweet from the “Right,” while ignoring the open appeals for violence by Democrat politicians and party officials, and while even extolling and supporting the thugs of Antifa and Black Lives Matter who are carrying out actual violence and terrorism.


The Neocon Heresy


Many Trump supporters have only recently become more fully aware of the extent to which the neoconservative cabal has hijacked conservatism, as well as the Republican Party. But it is a stealth project that has been underway for decades.


In his 1996 book entitled The Essential Neoconservative Reader, editor Mark Gerson triumphantly noted: “The neoconservatives have so changed conservatism that what we now identify as conservatism is largely what was once neoconservatism. And in so doing, they have defined the way that vast numbers of Americans view their economy, their polity, and their society.”


Gerson’s boastful assertion is certainly, and unfortunately, true. With the help of America’s archenemy globalists, the neocons were ensconced in places of prominence in the GOP and the media.


But what is “neoconservatism”? Even many of those familiar with the term are rather fuzzy on just what it is that neocons believe and propose. That is as intended. For the most part, neocons are adept at sounding conservative, which they mostly accomplish by playing the foil to the most radical Democrat proposals. It’s relatively easy to pull it off when one is allowed to pose as the champion against the nostrums of Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Maxine Waters, and The Squad. But what do the virulently anti-Trump neocons say they believe? Well, for starters we can look to the man known as the “godfather of neconservatism,” Irving Kristol, father of The Bulwark’s Bill Kristol.


In his 1995 book Neoconservatism: The Autobiography of an Idea, Kristol explained neoconservatism thusly: “[We] are conservative, but different in certain respects from the conservatism of the Republican Party. We accepted the New Deal in principle, and had little affection for the kind of isolationism that then permeated American conservatism.”


“So, neocons are for the New Deal — which is socialism,” explained John F. McManus, author of William F. Buckley Jr.: Pied Piper for the Establishment, the most thorough exposé of neoconservatism. “And,” McManus continued, “they despise ‘isolationism,’ which means Kristol and his neocon friends are internationalists. In a 1993 article appearing in the Wall Street Journal, Kristol expressed his enthusiasm for Social Security, Medicare, food stamps, Medicaid, even cash allowances for unwed mothers. You won’t find a neocon opposing the UN, although he might issue a recommendation merely to reform the world organization. And you certainly won’t find any neocon challenging the growth of big government because they love big government.”


The late Robert Bartley, a longtime editor of the Wall Street Journal, was an ardent neocon internationalist who once declared, “I think the nation-state is finished.” A member of the globalist Council on Foreign Relations, he saw the end of America’s national sovereignty and independence as a good thing. And he promoted fellow neocons from National Review, including those now at The Bulwark and The Dispatch.


Trotskyites and “Big Government Conservatism”


But it gets worse. Because, you see, amazingly, neoconservatism sprang from Trotskyite communists who only partially gave up their Marxist vision. In 1995, neocon godfather Kristol candidly stated, “I regard myself to have been a young Trotskyite and I have not a single bitter memory.” Trotsky, remember, was the ruthless Bolshevik leader who was the Soviet Union’s first war commissar. As such, he created the Red Army and deployed it mercilessly against the Russian people. Yes, he broke with Stalin, but he didn’t become a peaceful Democrat; his umbrage with the equally ruthless dictator Stalin was more along the lines of Mafiosi quarreling among themselves. He provided ideologues in the West — such as Kristol — with the excuse to cling to their collectivist dogma while reviling the “excesses” of Stalin.


Thus could Kristol make the oxymoronic statement that “a conservative welfare state … is perfectly consistent with the neoconservative perspective?” Likewise neocon Fred Barnes, a regular at National Review, the Wall Street Journal, and the network talking-head shows, could later take conservatives to task for criticizing President George W. Bush’s liberal-left policies. “Sure, some conservatives are upset because he has tolerated a surge in federal spending,” etc., and “fashioned an alliance of sorts with Teddy Kennedy on education and Medicare.” “But the real gripe, Barnes continued, “is that Bush isn’t their kind of conventional conservative. Rather, he’s a big government conservative.” Barnes then went on to defend Big Government Conservatism as a rational, authentic version of conservatism. Yes, like dry water or a wise fool.


Glazer’s Noteworthy Admission


Nathan Glazer was one of the founding fathers of neoconservatism and co-editor with Irving Kristol of The Public Interest, a journal funded by the CIA. Both Glazer and Kristol were longtime members of the Council on Foreign Relations. Glazer made a telling admission in that publication’s final issue in spring 2005, recalling: “All of us had voted for Lyndon Johnson in 1964, for Hubert Humphrey in 1968, and I would hazard that most of the original stalwarts of The Public Interest, editors and regular contributors, continued to vote for Democratic presidential candidates all the way to the present. Recall that the original definition of the neoconservatives was that they fully embraced the reforms of the New Deal, and indeed the major programs of Johnson’s Great Society…. Had we not defended the major social programs, from Social Security to Medicare, there would have been no need for the ‘neo’ before ‘conservatism.’” (Emphasis added.) Yes it is an odd, oxymoronic sort of “conservatism” that embraces the central planning and redistributive nostrums of FDR and LBJ.


Deep State Establishment Flacks


Max Boot is, perhaps, the quintessential neocon. For the past 18 years, he has been employed as a senior fellow in national security studies at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). Additionally, he is a columnist for the Washington Post (a longtime channel of CFR propaganda and a Deep State fount of the CIA’s Operation Mockingbird) and a commentator for CNN, and is a regular honored guest of Big Media. He previously wrote for Kristol’s now-defunct Weekly Standard, and is a major warmonger, urging U.S. military “engagement” virtually everywhere. The Big Media herd rushed to acclaim his 2018 book The Corrosion of Conservatism: Why I Left the Right. The Washington Post called it “One of the 50 Notable Works of Nonfiction in 2018.” The New York Times designated it as an “Editors’ Choice” book. The CFR praised Boot as a heroic Republican standing up to evil, as the Trump-led “nativism, xenophobia, vile racism, and assaults on the rule of law threaten the very fabric of our nation.” Naturally, Mr. Boot is a big fan and defender of Anthony Fauci, as well as a big promoter of COVID hysteria. That is to be expected, since his employer, the CFR, is the premier driver of the effort to use the virus as a pretext for “global health governance.”


Like their brethren at the CFR and Big Media, the neocon NeverTrump media mavens also celebrated Boot’s The Corrosion of Conservatism, along with his columns and media appearances attacking President Trump. Like him, they love Anthony Fauci and welcome face-diaper mandates and Mao-style lockdowns. Like Max Boot, they are bootlickers for the Deep State shadow government that will “cancel” the American Republic if allowed to steal the election and enthrone Joe Biden and Kamala Harris.


The role of the neocons today is to assist the globalist elites and the operatives in the major media, the Democrat Party, and the establishment GOP in ousting President Trump from the White House. That is precisely what the neocons of the Bulwark-National Review-Dispatch cabal are attempting to do.


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William F. Jasper is senior editor of The New American magazine and


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