, 8 tweets, 5 min read Read on Twitter
@joshtpm @CharlesPPierce Okay, good faith answer? Yes, the 90s were crucial, and I'll get to that. But I'm going to say this much: the right that I grew up in was grimly envious of the activist success of the Left in the 60s. We won the economic war - markets and investment and capitalism, yay. BUT: /1
@joshtpm @CharlesPPierce We knew we lost the culture war. By 1980, the welfare state was a shambles, and Reagan just didn't have to work that hard to convince people to try a new way. But on *social* issues, the right had lost to the activist left - and knew it. But they didn't know how to respond. /2
@joshtpm @CharlesPPierce I think Charlie and others really underestimate how much Bork seared the right wing. Activism - from the streets to Borking - wasn't yet natural to the right. (Think of a guy like Bob Michel, who was bewildered by the world of 1990). Clinton blew our minds. /3
@joshtpm @CharlesPPierce Bill Clinton poached our economic issues, and also said "Here's the last fuck-you in the culture war: I'm a military-hating, pot-smoking, womanizing douchebag, and you can't touch me." Gingrich, then, knew his time had come. He couldn't sell his shit until that moment. /4
@joshtpm @CharlesPPierce You don't get how dispirited the right was by 1992. We felt we'd won the Cold War, saved the economy, and righted the world, pretty much, and for that, we got Bill Clinton. It was an easy sell for Newt, and Establishment cons were tied to the GOP for the ride. /5
@joshtpm @CharlesPPierce So, Charlie, here's where I agree with you. Our inability to comprehend our own successes, and to understand the Dems successful tack to the center to take us on, gave us a dilemma. Go with the nuts and win, or keep our three-piece suits on and lose. The nuts promised revenge. /6
@joshtpm @CharlesPPierce Revenge on all the people who had somehow outflanked us, after Reagan-Bush. We should not have made a bargain with the loons. But we did. (I didn't: I told Heinz I couldn't work for a Gingrich con in my interview, and that he should know it about me.) I was a squish even then. /7
@joshtpm @CharlesPPierce The elite GOPers winning the economic war and the rank-and-file losing the culture war (which is still lost, no matter what they thing) set up Buchanan, and later Trump. There's more, but to me, the end begins in 1994, accelerates in 2008, hits max in 2010, and here we are. /8x
Missing some Tweet in this thread?
You can try to force a refresh.

Like this thread? Get email updates or save it to PDF!

Subscribe to Tom Nichols
Profile picture

Get real-time email alerts when new unrolls are available from this author!

This content may be removed anytime!

Twitter may remove this content at anytime, convert it as a PDF, save and print for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video

1) Follow Thread Reader App on Twitter so you can easily mention us!

2) Go to a Twitter thread (series of Tweets by the same owner) and mention us with a keyword "unroll" @threadreaderapp unroll

You can practice here first or read more on our help page!

Follow Us on Twitter!

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just three indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3.00/month or $30.00/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!