Calling Out the Captains
Militant Normals: How Regular Americans are Rebelling Against the Elite to Reclaim our Democracy by Kurt Schlicter, 2018 Hachette Book Group Inc.
Ship of Fools: How a Selfish Ruling Class is Bringing America to the Brink of Revolution by Tucker Carlson, 2018 Simon & Schuster
I first became familiar with lawyer and former Army Colonel Kurt Schlicter through his Twitter feed, which he uses to cheerfully humiliate gun-grabbers, neocons, and other nuisances, and through his pull-no-punches and often hilarious TownHall column. Occasional Fox News guest Schlicter is a prolific author of both fiction and non-fiction. The book Militant Normals falls (mostly) in the second category.
Schlicter begins by describing his experience of the 2016 campaign season during which he gradually changed from a Trump skeptic to a Trump supporter. He also explains the process by which "Normals," defined as regular, patriotic Americans who would prefer not to think about politics too much, were pushed to supporting Trump by the failures and malfeasance of the elite class as those elites have become more and more openly antagonistic towards everyone else.
Normals, Schlicter explains, are willing to let the elites have the perks of being the elites, as long as they hold up their end of the bargain by honoring their nobless oblige and allowing Normals to have a modicum of safety, opportunity, and respect. As elites have become increasingly disconnected from the rest of the country, they have ceased making even symbolic shows of respect towards the values and contributions of the Normals. Instead, they have begun to display open contempt and to expose their desire to completely dominate their supposed inferiors.
One point that Schlicter makes is that "elite" does not necessarily indicate wealth or high class. Many powerless and unaccomplished people can instantly be, or at least feel, "elite" by adopting the preferred views and pet issues of the powerful. Conversely, wealthy and powerful individuals such as Donald Trump, who champion the values and causes of the common man, may be considered Normals.
In one chapter, a fictional vignette takes you through the life of a "Normal" from a small town who serves in the military after leaving high school, then returns to the United States to find job opportunities gone and his hometown less safe because of illegal immigration. The frustration of this Normal who just wanted to live his life in peace grows as his country inexplicably changes around him. Another fictional vignette helps the reader understand the mindset of the elite in a parallel story told through the eyes of a young man from a wealthy Los Angeles suburb.
Schlicter expounds on the many channels which the elite have used to do injury to Normals: unaccountable "experts," the judiciary, the military, and Hollywood, among others. He reserves a particularly thorough and vicious routing for the pompous shills of "Conservative Inc," which alone is worth the price of the book. The phenomenal and unlikely Trump campaign of 2016 is recounted, quite enjoyably, and explained as the comeuppance of the elites from the once complacent, but now militant, Normals.
Relatable and humorous, Schlicter's book is best suited for an audience of Normals. It would be most enjoyable and informative for moderates and mainstream conservatives who are not usually immersed in politics, but would like to better understand the changes in the country over the past few years that led to the ascendancy of Trump and MAGA.
Tucker Carlson's Ship of Fools takes a different tack on a similar theme. Most people are familiar with Carlson from his highly-rated Fox News show which he uses to dole out as much truth as is allowed on network television - so much truth that he has been the target of left-wing boycott campaigns and even an Antifa mob attack on his home. The book touches on many themes he addresses in his show, but with more breadth and depth than would be allowed in that format.
Carlson grew up surrounded by hippies in California, and though he didn't like them, he explains how today's leftists are much worse. In decades past, their ideas may have been wrong, but they at least cared about others. Now more wealthy and powerful, and with an exaggerated sense of their own virtue and abilities, they lack empathy with the middle class. Chelsea Clinton, for example, is showered with money, praise, and attention despite being wholly unremarkable other than her pedigree. Big businesses, once the nemesis of liberals, now nod to liberal causes in ways that cost them nothing of significance while raking in profits at the expense of exploited workers.
A frequent topic on Carlson's show, immigration, is also discussed in depth. While old-school Democrats might have taken the side of American workers against cheap labor-seeking big business, today their never-ending quest for more "diversity" causes them to ally with big business against the American public in their desire to import a serf class of immigrants. For the insulated wealthy, there is no downside. In fact, because of the moral framing of the issue, the elites even get to pat themselves on the back for being enlightened and compassionate. The once peace-loving hippies abandoned their anti-war stance when they realized force could be used for the "good" of social engineering. Carlson gives a good drubbing to the pundit class who is constantly agitating for others' blood to be spilled in their overseas wars. Liberal institutions like Berkeley and the ACLU that once lauded the principle of free speech have begun to oppose "hate speech," and many leftists now feel justified in using violence to suppress it. Journalists that were meant to hold those in power accountable have now become the gatekeepers of information that protect the ruling class.
Unlike Schlicter, Carlson tackles the issues of race and diversity. He points out that a ruling class that cared about the welfare of the country would work to de-emphasize racial conflicts. Our elite institutions are instead emphasizing them to the point where they are the center of our public conversation. A tsunami of anti-white activism and press has been the result, with the ascension of white identity politics as the predictable response. Elites gain power from identity politics, while the public endures the resulting tensions and conflict. Numerous other examples of the elites' failures and hypocrisy are examined by Carlson.
Both books could serve as a word of caution to the ruling class. As long as you continue to disregard the needs of the population, expect revolt.
The Carolina Contrarian, Anne Wilson Smith, is the author of Charlottesville Untold: Inside Unite the Right. She is a soft-spoken Southern belle by day, opinionated writer by night. She loves Jesus, her family, and her hometown. She enjoys floral dresses and acoustic guitar music. You may contact Carolina Contrarian at CarolinaContrarian@protonmail.com.