Our Revolutionary Times

Victor Davis Hanson
American Greatness

Sometimes unexpected but dramatic events tear off the thin veneer of respectability and convention. What follows is the exposure and repudiation of long-existing but previously covered-up pathologies.

Events like the destruction of the southern border over the last three years, the October 7 massacre and ensuing Gaza war, the campus protests, the COVID-19 epidemic and lockdown, and the systematic efforts to weaponize our bureaucracies and courts have all led to radical reappraisals of American culture and civilization.

Since the 1960s, universities have always been hotbeds of left-wing protests, sometimes violently so.

But the post-October 7 campus eruptions marked a watershed difference.

Masked left-wing protestors were unashamedly and virulently anti-Semitic. Students on elite campuses especially showed contempt for both middle-class police officers tasked with preventing their violence and vandalism and the maintenance workers who had to clean up their garbage.

Mobs took over buildings, assaulted Jewish students, called for the destruction of Israel, and defaced American monuments andanti commentaries.

When pressed by journalists to explain their protests, most students knew nothing of the politics or geography of Palestine, for which they were protesting.

The public concluded that the more elite the campus, the more ignorant, arrogant, and hateful the students seemed.

The Biden administration destroyed the southern border. Ten million illegal aliens swarmed into the U.S. without audit. Almost daily, news accounts detail violent acts committed by illegal aliens or their surreal demands for more free lodging and support.

Simultaneously, thousands of Middle Eastern students, invited by universities on student visas, block traffic, occupy bridges, disrupt graduations, and generally show contempt for the laws of their American hosts.

The net result is that Americans are reappraising their entire attitude toward immigration. Expect the border to be closed soon and immigration to become mostly meritocratic, smaller, and legal, with zero tolerance for immigrants and resident visitors who break the laws of their hosts.

Americans are also reappraising their attitudes toward time-honored bureaucracies, the courts, and government agencies.

The public still cannot digest the truth that the once respected FBI partnered with social media to suppress news stories, to surveil parents at school board meetings, and to conduct performance art swat raids on the homes of supposed political opponents.

After the attempts of the Department of Justice to go easy on the miscreant Hunter Biden but to hound ex-president Donald Trump for supposedly removing files illegally in the same fashion as current President Biden, the public lost confidence not just in Attorney General Merrick Garland but in American jurisprudence itself.

The shenanigans of prosecutors like Fani Willis, Letitia James, and Alvin Bragg, along with overtly biased judges like Juan Merchant and Arthur Engoron, only reinforced the reality that the American legal system has descended into third-world-like tit-for-tat vendettas.

The same politicization has nearly discredited the Pentagon. Its investigations of “white” rage and white supremacy found no such organized cabals in the ranks. But these unicorn hunts likely helped cause a 45,000-recruitment shortfall among precisely the demographic that died at twice their numbers in the general population in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Add in the humiliating flight from Kabul, the abandonment of $50 billion in weapons to the Taliban terrorists, the recent embarrassment of the failed Gaza pier, and the litany of political invective from retired generals and admirals. The result is that the armed forces have an enormous task to restore public faith. They will have to return to meritocracy and emphasize battle efficacy, enforce the uniform code of military justice, and start either winning wars or avoiding those that cannot be won.

Finally, we are witnessing a radical inversion in our two political parties. The old populist Democratic Party that championed lunch-bucket workers has turned into a shrill union of the very rich and subsidized poor. Its support of open borders, illegal immigration, the war on fossil fuels, transgenderism, critical legal and race theories, and the woke agenda are causing the party to lose support.

The Republican Party is likewise rebranding itself from a once-stereotyped brand of aristocratic and corporate grandees to one anchored in the middle class.

Even more radically, the new populist Republicans are beginning to appeal to voters on shared class and cultural concerns rather than on racial and tribal interests.

The results of all these revolutions will shake up the U.S. for decades to come.

Soon we may see a Georgia Tech or Purdue degree as far better proof of an educated and civic-minded citizen than a Harvard or Stanford brand.

We will likely jettison the failed salad bowl approach to immigration and return to the melting pot as immigration becomes exclusively legal, meritocratic, and manageable.

To avoid further loss of public confidence, institutions like the FBI, the CIA, the Pentagon, and the DOJ will have to re-earn rather than just assume the public’s confidence.

And we may soon accept the reality that Democrats reflect the values of Silicon Valley plutocrats, university presidents, and blue-city mayors, while Republicans become the home of an ecumenical black, Hispanic, Asian, and white middle class.

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52 thoughts on “Our Revolutionary Times”

  1. Craig Brookins

    Well stated Victor! For me, and I think for many others, your expertise in listing the many travesties of the biden cabal inflicts on American citizens is essential. I/we need to be continually exposed to these insults. It strengthens resolve!

  2. I’ve never understood the salad bowl analogy. It supposes that people remain the same as the people in their ancestral lands even after living in America for sometime. It’s nonsense. People may retain elements of their culture such as a liking for certain foods or music, etc., but they change. Their kids certainly change. Sooner or later the young Mexican kid notices the cute Vietnamese girl and she notices back. Before you know it there’s a whole lot of melting going on. If you don’t like the melting pot analogy perhaps a stew is better one. After some cooking the original ingredients are still recognizable, but they’re not as they were when they first went into the pot.

    1. David Tavadian

      Yes, but like any salad or stew, there are limits to various ingredients. Pour two pounds of salt into your stew, and see if you like. Nobody is against immigration. People want limited and planned immigration, just like the recipe of time stew has dosages.

    2. Harry,

      This is just great! Thank you for putting a smile on my face. I was a high school French teacher for 40 years. The Academy in France seriously attempts to keep French people from using English words. Good luck, especially with words like: sexy, cool, wifi. They have no control.

      Your description is right on and describes one of the most beautiful things about the United States. People are free, and especially the next generations of immigrants do mix.

      They can’t control it. They’re so silly.

    3. The promotion of salad bowl nationality keeps people distinct while living in the same area. People who do not adopt a common American identity can more easily be controlled politically by appealing to their group’s particular self-interest.

      Also, dividing the people against one another keeps them competing against one another so that the system can be overthrown and replaced.

      Salad bowl nationality may stem from an underlying dissatisfaction with the moral/political/economic culture. My guess is that progressive Marxism is a form of rebellion against biblical morality and principles.

      1. simple country lawyer

        Current situation reflects the fact that despite our democratic republic’s absolute requirement that we share things in “common,” there is neither a “commonwealth” nor an appreciation of the rights of others and the obligations that flow from our rights. Our greatest social intercourse with people we do not know occurs on the highways, and if you drive, you know how much there is “in common” in that arena. Rather than respect and appreciate other drivers, we seem to have nothing in common except the fact that nothing matters but me and how fast I am able to get where I want to go.

        1. Thanks for your observations. We have little affinity for one another including our Constitution and common history.

          Sharing the highways is a humbling experience. I stay in the far-right lane, no pun intended.

  3. Robert B Cherba

    Another great article! I read, listen and agree with you 100%. I suppose that somehow makes me biased.

  4. We should acknowledge several truths that the left has tossed into the trash can.

    Men are not wives.
    Women are not husbands.
    Boys are not girls.
    Girls are not boys.
    Men cannot have babies.
    Illegally entering America is a crime. ( it’s not legal you see )

    Existing in the la-la land of the WOKE has produced a generation of poorly educated, angry, guilt-ridden, inept, rude whiners who stare at their plastic device lovingly clutched at eye level even when walking down the street. Sad.

    1. Pragmaticism – Easier to be leftist in America as one gains acceptance from others and the culture. Acquiescing to Woke dictates may gain standing with others and even a job.

      Spiritually – There is much delusion occurring now in America and the world at large. The inability to reason is a sign of progressive spiritual and moral destruction.

  5. Understanding the rise in anti-Semitism is best approached through a spiritual lens.

    As the Bible predicted, all nations are going to abandon Israel (yes, even the US), and there are things coming down the pike that will make October 7, 2023 seem like a cakewalk.

    The devil knows his time is short and still believes he can thwart the plan of God of ultimately returning to Israel and install His 1,000-year Kingdom.

    All of the Biblical prophetic signs we were told to watch for are either here presently or being foreshadowed and nearing fulfillment.

    Repent and turn to Christ while there is still time.

  6. Michael Terry

    The same politicization has nearly: It should be clearly, not nearly. To avoid further loss…institutions like…will never assume vs, just assume. This country will never recover from these disgraceful events and institutions up to and including and having another civil war. Surprised that no one has written on the anti-American FBI which has been compromised and politicized at least starting in the ’80’s, if not before. To say otherwise would require that we believe in the paragon of virtue of EJ Hoover.

  7. Victor,
    A few things I do not see happening:
    I do not see the demise of the current Immigration fiasco, as it seems we have been conditioned to expect cheap labor, (The Wealthy and Middle Class) for our everyday necessities, like, quick meals, skilled labor, gardening, car washes etc.. These jobs are primarily done by those on the outskirts. It is difficult enough to get Americans into the Construction Trades because we have gotten fat and lazy. Can you provide statistics that show otherwise, we are loosing more tradesman than we are replacing, as the birthrate continues to decline. When was the last time you saw a neighbors kid washing his parents car, they are too busy playing travel ball, or club soccer.
    With regards to Republicans rebranding to a more working class electorate, I don’t trust them as far as I could throw them. They are truly with a few exceptions a Uni-Party that rubber stamps 1950’s era foreign policy. I think Americans are fed up with Foreign Wars and the price we continue to pay. How many died with the lies of the Bush Policies? Beyond Trump,who is an outsider, what is the next Conservative inline do differently, or will we get another RINO line Pence. If they opposed an outsider in Trump how do we make sure the next candidate is also an outsider dedicated to change. Meanwhile 50% of the electorate continue to vote identity Politics. It is truly all depressing on a Grand Scale. I don’t think I am the only one who is cynical about our future.

    1. Shawn – Thanks for vividly illustrating American culture as our youth are dedicated to playing travel ball and club soccer.

      It is surprising that half of the electorate continue to vote identity politics. I would think that people could see through it, but they can’t.

      However, be encouraged that God is still in control. He is working his will in our troubles and by his grace, good can come out of it.

  8. It is sad that a person that earns a living with their hands, a carpenter,plumber,auto tech (mechanic for us old guys) are looked down on. Kids that go to college get a worthless degree & can’t get a job then live a home with their parents (Dad is a plumber) & the rest of the working Americans get stuck with the college debt. The border is wide open & No Congressmen or Senator will help Americans Close the Border. Finish the wall it worked for China for thousands of yrs. I live in a small city in E. TX. & vote in every local,state, federal election. Nothing gets fixed in my city, streets are a mess they tell me wait there is no Money, I pay my property taxes on time. Americans are fed up with lip service from politicians. They Lie to us & the Media lies. I’m retired just trying to survive, the dollar is worthless.

    1. Mustang Mike – Thank you for your post. We are indebted to those who work with their hands and wish that more could be as capable. It is good to know what is happening in east Texas as it helps to know what is going on in our country. Your concerns and practical solutions are shared by others.

  9. Ahh, the good Dr. correctly assesses the current landscape. It is amazing to me that in my almost 50 years if being a legal adult, we have devolved so far. It is as if the 2nd WW never occurred given the collapse in the US of unique American values. And the fact that our elected officials in Washington have incurred $35 trillion in debt in the last 45 years is a testament to how low we have come.

    And the citizens have no one to blame but us. We elected these clowns, including so called conservatives who voted for the increase in debt because of earmarks and other backscratching.

    I fear we have lurched too far leftward, and most people will not pay the price to right the ship.

    But thank you as always Dr. Hanson, you never disappoint with your insight and perspective.

    PS-can I still get a signed copy of TEOE?


    Ed Pulliam

  10. Thanks for your bravery to proclaim the obvious. What’s sad is that the once mainline denominations are right there with the left. Sad!

    1. Ed – Good observation about mainline denominations. It a church does not adhere to the teachings of the Bible then anything can replace it and, in this case, leftist beliefs and morality.

  11. To paraphrase Hillary Clinton “…then why isn’t Trump winning by 50%…”. The break in the system is deeper than the article indicates for Biden and the left to have any significant popular support. Yet they have the Senate, half the House, governors in all but one swing state, state legislators in several swing states, and against Trump Biden still polls either slightly behind or slightly ahead. I just don’t get it how people haven’t had enough. I have.

    1. Exactly! Who are the 40%;who supposedly support Dementia Joe? How can they vote against their own self interests? The mental illness in the country is staggering.

    2. People may not have had enough of the mania because they are unable to reason properly. Please see Romans 1:18-32

  12. Bernard P. Giroux

    Afte =r the verdict in New york, expect a revolution My flag goes up tomorrow upside down.

  13. College-prep teacher for 20+ years here. Students average 30 on the ACT. Elite colleges clearly losing favor among seniors as state schools offer compelling alternatives at much better prices. Employers like this route. More, I also serve on a serious private VoTech college Trustees board, and our grads are 99% employed immediately following their associates degree. 20-year-olds w/ options are making bank, happy. Some becoming pilots. Times are changing, meritocracy will emerge, but we’ll need to hang on for some volatility. Be optimistic!

  14. Stephen A. Hill

    After hearing about the Trial in New York City, I am beginning to understand the old testament warning about those who sow the wind, will reap the whirl wind.

  15. I have never been so consistently compelled to express my gratitude for a writer’s eloquence and clear expression of truth and justice before being introduced to VDH. Your unwavering and pronounced championing of historical, present, and future truths and liberty are humbling and wholly inspiring. I wish I had the verbiage to express more than simply “thanks,” but be assured it is pregnant with its fullest possible meaning.

  16. Mr. Hanson,
    Your assessment is highly accurate with one exception. “ Soon we may see a Georgia Tech or Purdue degree as far better proof of an educated and civic-minded citizen than a Harvard or Stanford brand.” – Many already do. Harvard and Stanford conjure an image of a petulant emotional train wreck with an overdeveloped sense of entitlement bolstered by unrestrained arrogance and fueled by ignorance.

  17. Thank you for your hope inspiring commentary, Mr Hanson. I hope and pray it’s as you so eloquently stated the very worrisome predicament we are facing and what the outcome could be.

  18. Your synthesis of our current situations are always “spot on” and so well articulated. Lately I’ve been left with a sense of doom after reading your work. However, today there is a measure of hope in your thoughts. I pray your predictions are accurate. However, I fear that the majority of our population do not see, understand, or take the time to delve into the complexities of all of this.

  19. John Humphries

    A very optimistic take on the current status of our country. I am part way through your book “The End of Everything” which is by contrast a not as bright an evaluation of our potential future. I am hopeful that your upbeat insightful view comes to fruition.

  20. William M Bean Jr

    In 1935 Sinclair Lewis wrote a novel that was popular at the time but had been relegated more to obscurity these days. During the 1950s and 1960s as conservative commentators, politicians, and others spoke of the dangers of communism the liberal left would udder the simple counter argument that “It Can’t Happen Here!”. That was the title of Lewis’ book, a dystopian novel of how a fascist regime could take over America. There was no foreign invasion, just ignorance, greed, and envy on the part of the nation as a whole. Yesterday in New Your City we saw the complete breakdown of the rule of law and that the only thing that matters is the dominance of one’s ideology.

    1. Lewis’ novel which attributes the overthrow of America to its ignorant, greedy, envious, and lawless population sounds like the selflove that characterizes man in Romans 1:18-32. When man fails to love God, he finds an idol to worship, and that idol is often himself. Selflove characterizes our times. See also 2 Timothy 3:1-5.

  21. Why must the pendulum suffer its pledges so severe a course only to reign in the radical left? It seems the job of the right is too effect the steadying and returning us to moderation .. but always at the result of being pulled further left in the process.. is this the fate of progress ??

    1. It is natural for man to progress toward greater sin and rebellion against God. This is the way of man when God allows him to do what he wants. Please see Romans 1:18-32.

  22. Red city and state attorneys should bring indictments on the lawless left, they’ve looked the other way long enough. It’s time to grow a spine. Give the FBI, the CIA, the Pentagon and the DOJ such a path to re- earn our trust and support.

  23. Mark Bridgeman

    Re. the excellent Purdue/GaTech observation….. My wife is a Stanford PBK. She was an engineering manager at a Fortune top 25 corporation in the late ’80s. I remember her saying that she would rather hire a 3.5 from U. of Dayton (we were in the MidWest) than a 3.0 from Stanford! And that was way back then! (for all the eagle eyes out there, her Bachelor’s was biology, MS in ChemE, both at Stanford. Hence the PBK, which a typical undergrand engineering degree would usually not have enough social studies and life sciences to qualify for….)

  24. Daryl Lafferty

    Mr. Hanson, Your understanding of everything this nation and indeed the world is suffering is remarkable. Hopefully as people learn about you and your knowledge of events a nationwide awakening will occur. To be sure it is monumental to try and understand the gravity of what our eyes are seeing and our ears are hearing. If an awakening doesn’t happen this year in view of the obvious corruption in our judicial system and government, equating us to a banana republic, then we will find ourselves in the position of saying the phrase that will seal our doom and unfortunately is not reversible. That saying is; “I TOLD YOU SO”

  25. Michael Campbell

    “…Expect the border to be closed soon…” Many of us said that after WTC1, 911, several major economic turndowns, and a pandemic. Thirty years is a long time to expect… From your lips to God’s ears.

  26. The pre has stated that the verdict was a victory for the rule of law. I wonder if a not guilty verdict would have evoked the same comment.

  27. I do not think the Biden-Clinton-Obama cabal intend to relinquish power after the next general election. They know all too well what they have done and what real justice would look like – think Nuremberg Tribunals. I believe (though I hope I am wrong) that they will do whatever it takes, whether that is imprisoning/assassinating their opposition’s candidate and close associates, postponing the election because of a manufactured “national emergency”, declaring nationwide martial law, or even starting a war with Russia and/or China. I put nothing past them. I think we will be living in a very different USA a year from now.

  28. So far left protests were just fine when they were violently anti-White but now that they are anti-semetic these riots rebranded as “protests” are no longer to be celebrated and embraced?

  29. Your articles never fail to captivate me. Each one is a testament to your expertise and dedication to your craft. Thank you for sharing your wisdom with the world.

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