Victor Davis Hanson Private Papers

Author Archives: Victor Davis Hanson

Victor Davis Hanson is the Martin and Illie Anderson Senior Fellow in Residence in Classics and Military History at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, a professor of Classics Emeritus at California State University, Fresno, and a nationally syndicated columnist for Tribune Media Services. He is also the Wayne & Marcia Buske Distinguished Fellow in History, Hillsdale College, where he teaches each fall semester courses in military history and classical culture.

What or Who Decides This Election?

Victor Davis Hanson // National Review

We know where to watch in the next few weeks but have no real idea what we will be watching. Yet pundits, the media, and the Left seem giddy that their polls show a Trump slump, as if they have learned nothing and forgotten nothing from 2016. But in truth, the news cycle over the next three months may well favor Trump — a scenario his opponents no doubt deem preposterous in these dog days of August.

1. The virus. The coronavirus is like an out-of-control grass fire. It dies down only to flare up without much predictability — making fools of yesterday’s experts, proving them yet again today’s geniuses, only to render them idiots tomorrow.

Trump’s polls climbed in May when it looked as if the vicious virus was waning. But after the public relaxed its guard, or protesters gathered for much of June in massive demonstrations that were politically correct mockeries of social distancing, masks, and disinfects, or the virus got its natural second wind, it caught fire again — and abroad as well.

Read the full article here

Steele’s dossier: ‘Clown show’ or the greatest Russian coup?

The following article is from my colleague, Paul Roderick Gregory, in The Hill

The known details of the so-called Steele dossier point to a peculiar ambiguity. To expert analysts, it always appeared to be low-quality political opposition research. Yet, it turned American against American, paralyzed our government — and may be the greatest Russian disinformation coup in history.

On Jan. 10, 2017, BuzzFeed published the dossier. Supposedly written by an ex-MI6 agent turned consultant, Christopher Steele, it charged, among other offenses, that President-elect Trump was a longtime Russian agent and a pervert to boot.

Trump’s many opponents rushed to adopt the dossier as a road map to Putin-Trump collusion. 

At about the same time, the FBI was interrogating a 42-year-old Russian national working in Washington. The interviewee, Igor Danchenko, admitted to being Steele’s primary source for the dossier. The “clueless” Danchenko confirmed that he had collected the dossier’s “raw material” from talking with drinking buddies. For purposes of the dossier, Steele would transform Danchenko’s “sources” into high-level Kremlin insiders.

Read the full article here

John Anderson Direct: With Victor Davis Hanson, Historian and Writer

The New Old Obama

Victor Davis Hanson // American Greatness

In his latest incarnation as president emeritus and corporate multimillionaire community activist, we are reminded of the earlier Barack Obama of “get in their face,” “take a gun to a knife fight,” and “punish our enemies” vintage. From time to time, Obama ventures from his hilltop, seaside, $12 million “you didn’t build that” Martha’s Vineyard Estate or his tony Washington, D.C. $8 million “spread the wealth” mansion to lecture the nation on all of its racist sins, past and present.

In these outings, he seeks to advise lesser folk on how we can still find redemption (make Puerto Rico a state?), given that his own eight years as president apparently proved that the United States remains hopelessly captive to the spirit of Bull Connor and that a president such as himself—starting out with complete control of the Congress—had no power to change much.

His latest weaponization of the funeral of John Lewis revealed all the Obama signature characteristics.

Read the full article here

Victor Davis Hanson: Was there an Ancient Cancel Culture?

Victor Davis Hanson: Trump is ‘protector’ of traditions that Dems want to disrupt

‘They want to change the system rather than work within the system,’ Hanson says of Democrats

Watch the interview here

Our Summer of Cultural Suicide

Victor Davis Hanson // National Review

Cultural suicide used to be a popular diagnosis of why things suddenly just quit.

Historians such as Oswald Spengler and Arnold Toynbee cited social cannibalism to explain why once-successful states, institutions, and cultures simply died off.

Their common explanation was that the arrogance of success ensures lethal consequences. Once elites became pampered and arrogant, they feel exempt from their ancestors’ respect for moral and spiritual laws  — such as the need for thrift, moderation, and transcendence.

Take professional sports. Over the past century, professional football, basketball, and baseball were racially integrated, and they adopted a uniform code of patriotic observance. The three leagues offered fans a pleasant respite from daily barroom politics. As a result, by the 21st century, the NFL, NBA, and MLB had become global multi-billion-dollar enterprises.

Then hubris ensued.

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Angry Reader 08-01-2020

I was really impressed by the article you wrote that was published in the east bay times today. Mostly impressed by the enourmase size of the piece of shit that you are. Inciting violence from the “silent majority” is one of the most irresponsible things one can possibly publish.

FUCK YOU.

Best Jon Viera


Dear Angry Reader Jon Viera,

Within such a brief note, you included a lot of the usual Angry Reader pathologies—the tired emphatic capital letters, sarcasm, grammatical errors, misspellings, scatology, the F-word, and untruth. If you can cite anywhere in the article you referenced that I called for, or incited violence, you would have cited the passage verbatim, since you seem fond of quotation marks. In fact, you cannot, because I wrote no such thing. I have never advocated violence. Like millions of others I have been appalled at the riot, ruin, injuries and deaths we are seeing on the streets of America and those who have abetted it. There is going to be a backlash and pushback from Americans who are confused by and growing angry at the looting, arson, destruction, and random violence of Antifa and BLM. But the reaction will likely be manifested in either one of two ways—at the ballot box or a sort of disengagement from popular culture—or both.

Best, Victor Hanson

Angry Reader 07-31-2020

Hello Professor Hanson,

First let me say, I am a regular reader and viewer of yours. I relish your take on the important issues.

This evening on Tucker Carlson Tonight with Brian Kilmeade 7/16/2020 you used some imprecise language that caused both me and my bride of many years great distress because she is currently teaching and I taught briefly a few years ago.

The subject was Teacher’s Unions demands for among other things defunding the police, Medicare for all, blah blah, and not working until their demands are met. What specifically offended us was the imprecise language you used in saying that it was the Teachers making these demands as opposed to the Teacher’s Unions.

Please differentiate between the Teachers and the Teachers Unions in the future because not all teachers agree with the liberal democrat party line toed by the unions. It sounded to my wife as if you were saying the Teachers were getting paid for not working and want to keep it that way. That is the furthest thing from her mind. She is called to teach and even at a point approaching retirement rather than phone it in, she expends a great deal of imagination and creativity to provide a challenging educational experience for her students daily.

Your attention to this matter will be greatly appreciated.

Respectfully,

Joe Cox


Dear Not So Angry Reader Joe Cox,

I think it is permissible in a brief 3- minute interview to reference “teachers,” as a generic in the manner we do “steel workers”, “administrators”, the “military”, etc. without adding specifications—with the understanding that most realize that not everyone fits into that category. But they are useful generalities: most teachers are in liberal unions, at least until recent court cases, and most tend to be more liberal than conservative. Most professors are too. Most auto workers believe in strong union agendas. And most military, at least among the enlisted and mid-officer ranks, are more conservative.

I am a teacher; my son is a teacher; my son-in-law is a teacher; my father was a teacher. All of us at various times were / are represented by teacher or professor unions, and all probably were at odds with the official union messaging, and our views were probably in a minority among their union peers. When I say “academics”, and I do use that term, I assume most think that I am an academic who does not agree with the majority of the profession, and that there exist also voices out there who don’t either. Obviously, if most teachers felt like your spouse, then the unions would reflect that common-sense perspective; but they are overwhelmingly leftwing, either because teachers are too, or because too many teachers shrug and are not interested in showing up for union voting, or do not have time for the hassle of opposing such a monolithic and well-funded force.

Thank you for your well-written and professional note.

Respectfully,

Victor Hanson

What Antifa Won’t Tell You

The following article is from my colleague, Paul Roderick Gregory, in The American Mind

Observers of the demonstrations, statue toppling, and riots that followed the police killing of George Floyd on May 25 could not help but notice a distinctive pattern of protest. Legitimate demonstrators stood on the frontline, while stones, Molotov cocktails and other objects were hurled from the rear. Police could not move against the true offenders without breaking through the frontline. At universities, protesters appeared like clockwork armed with signs to disrupt “unwelcome” speakers. These actions all speak to a high degree of coordination and control.

The public has learned to associate these tactics with Antifa (a group whose name stands for “anti-fascist”). Images of Antifa demonstrations show a mostly young, male, and white membership, often armed with police batons. They appear at demonstrations, fight with their opponents, and deny speaking platforms to their enemies. Antifa’s reach is world-wide as it captures the imagination of Millennials.

Yet, almost universally, Antifa is described as a makeshift network of organizations united by a common ideology. Sympathetic media characterize Antifa as a loose network of autonomous activists operating without a control center. Is this true?

Read the full article here

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