The Supreme Court Gets it Wrong, Again

This isn’t a popular opinion, but the Supreme Court made a grave mistake in the recent decision striking down affirmative action at Harvard and the University of North Carolina.

I told a colleague the Court was just trimming around the edges. He disagreed. Let me explain.

The Court used 14th Amendment incorporation to invalidate affirmative action admissions policies for Harvard and UNC.

While many conservatives have cheered, the longstanding implications are dangerous, as this piece at points out.

By relying on the 14th Amendment, the Court nationalized the entire education industry. Of course, it could be argued that the federal Department of Education has already accomplished this fact, but this decision is another step in federal overreach.

Incorporation is a cancer.

The Court could have simply invalidated the admissions practices based on the 1964 Civil Rights Act (a law that is also dubious constitutionally, but that is another issue).

But the Court “conservatives” are just as in love with incorporation as the progressives on the bench.

When you play their game on their field, you are going to lose more than you win.

With the exception of the Dobbs decision, the Court has relied on a generally progressive understanding of federal power to strike down previous bad decisions. They could go further, as Justice Thomas explained in his concurring opinion in Dobbs.

This is why I said they are trimming around the edges.

I am not sure the Roberts court has the backbone to tear down incorporation. That would be significant, and while this has been an entertaining Court with the most substantial record in decades, it could do more.

I discuss the Court and the affirmative action decision on Episode 849 of The Brion McClanahan Show.

Mark Levin is Really Bad at History

Mark Levin is really bad at history.

In one of his rants over the weekend, Levin took the time to promote his forthcoming book, The Democrat Party Hates America.

Now, more most American conservatives, this is read meat. I agree with some of his assessment.

But the devil is in the details.

You see, Levin blames every “evil” in American history on Democrats while the Republicans were just good morally righteous saints.

This is important. To Levin and other conservatives, the issue is always R vs. D.

If we just had more Republicans in office, things would be alright.

And to Levin and people like Victor Davis Hanson, the evil bogeyman is always the Confederacy and Jefferson Davis, which makes them exactly like the left whom they seem to despise.

If you are trumpeting Abraham Lincoln as a conservative, you are already playing a losing game.

Republicans worked hard in the 1850s to make it clear they were the real “white man’s party.”

They wanted the western territories for free white labor alone. Blacks were persona non grata.

By law.

Let that sink in.

Lincoln made it clear throughout his political career that while he opposed slavery, he was not interested in racial egalitarianism.

Plus, if you are looking for the origins of “Jim Crow,” don’t look to the South as Levin and others ridiculously claim.

Levin argues that legal segregation only came about because of the evil Southern Democrats hiding under the bed and in the closet. BOO!

That is sophomoric at best and stupid at worst.

As I discussed earlier this year, “Jim Crow” began in Northern States and was promoted by Northerners even after the War. Both Whigs and Democrats believed in racial separation, with perhaps only about 10% of the entire New England population on board with racial equality.

When Levin cites the Plessy v. Ferguson case as the definitive example of Southern DEMOCRAT evil, he omits that the majority opinion was written by a New England born Republican, Henry Brown, and that seven of the nine members of the Supreme Court were nominated by Republicans.

Don’t let facts get in the way of being stupid.

I could go on, but this type of simplistic R vs. D nonsense is the byproduct of a poor American education system.

And the fact that Levin had to state several times that his book is “scholarly” and “well-researched” is cover for the fact that it isn’t.

It did give me some great Podcast fodder.

I take apart dopey Levin on Episode 843 of The Brion McClanahan Show.

Is Trump’s Indictment Good for the GOP?

Could Trump’s indictment be good for the GOP in 2024?

This is a bold assertion based on the belief that Trump will be forced to support whomever gets the nomination–if he doesn’t–because only a Republican president would dare pardon him.

I don’t necessarily buy it.

Trump doesn’t seem to be taking the entire matter seriously, and I’m not certain he would see any jail time regardless of the legal outcome.

And as I have suggested before, if the GOP does move away from Trump, he will run third party.

Trump is and has always been about Trump.

A Republican president still might pardon Trump even if he bolts the GOP, simply because they would be pushing back against a “weaponized” justice department.

Of course, this would imply that the justice department was not weaponized before Biden took office, and anyone who has followed politics for any period of time knows this isn’t true.

Just as anyone with a brain knows that the FBI, CIA, and other “intelligence agencies” have always been used for politically partisan purposes.

Same for the IRS.

That is the point. Power.

Americans on the “right” are waking up to this fact and crying foul.

Those on the “left” who used to worry about being hounded by the FBI are realizing how fun it can be to use it to harm their political opponents.

Calhoun explained that this is always the result of “numerical majoritarianism.” Those in power will use the levers of power to force their agenda while those on the sidelines will squawk about the Constitution–that is until they get power.

The real causalities are ordinary Americans who never have power and won’t get power.

You see, the GOP is just a softer version of the modern Jackasses.

They want power, too, and don’t care much about their constituents once they get it.

See Alabama Representative Mike Rogers and his acceptance of the “Naming Commission”‘s woke agenda because it funneled money into Alabama defense contractors, his real constituents.

Who cares about the thousands of people in his district that oppose the woke stupidity of the “Naming Commission.” They don’t slap down six figures for his toupee fund.

If you feel irrelevant at the federal level, you are.

That’s why I’ve been preaching think locally, act locally for years.

The net takeaway from Trump’s indictment should be simple.

The general government is corrupt and relying on other corrupt people to change it is like throwing gasoline on a fire.

I discuss Trump’s indictment on Episode 841 of The Brion McClanahan Show.

Every Crisis is a “Constitutional Crisis”

It seems every crisis in America is a “Constitutional crisis.”


Because Americans have forgotten–or have never been taught–about federalism.

You see, one size fits all, top down government results in all of the political angst we have in the United States.

It’s quite simple.

The founding generation realized that Connecticut and South Carolina were never going to see eye to eye on a variety of “domestic” issues, so they granted the general government power over foreign policy and commerce.

That’s it.

Not education. Not marriage. Not health care. Not energy. Not agriculture or industry.

Just trade and defense.

And the one paper check on federal power was the 10th Amendment.

Of course, I mean “paper” check. John C. Calhoun understood that it needed teeth.

That has always been the problem. The founding generation believed in nullification and State interposition and used it frequently during the colonial period.

Jeffersonians continued the practice in the early federal republic, but by the time Calhoun began advancing the “concurrent majority” New Englanders began rallying around “nationalism” as a cover for their own sectional interests.

The 10th Amendment no longer mattered because the States could not enforce it, even if members of the founding generation insisted the States would be powerful enough to check federal usurpation of power.

This is our current Lincolnian nationalist nightmare and why every issue is a “Constitutional crisis.”

It doesn’t have to be this way, and the good men at The Tenth Amendment Center have been working hard to make real federalism a possibility in the 21st century.

They also gave me some great Podcast fodder.

I talk about federalism and the Tenth Amendment on Episode 839 of The Brion McClanahan Show.

DeSantis, RFK, Jr., and “Lincoln Conservatives”

According to a Ron DeSantis “rapid response” organizer, you can call yourself a Republican or a conservative if you are anti-Lincoln.

I actually agree with the first part, but the second is just laughable.

Ron DeSantis has been a very good governor in Florida, but as I have said many times, it would be better to have 50 Ron DeSantis governors than DeSantis as president.

You see, if you have his own people arguing that Lincoln was in any way “conservative”, you’ve already conceded the field to the other side.

This is the real problem with the West Coast Straussians. They get some things right, but their full throated support of Lincoln and “equality” as conservative forces the American right to operate from a position of weakness.

You are playing ball on the other team’s home field. More importantly, you are playing their game by their rules. And they can change them if they choose.

The end result? We lose.

Trump’s potential legal issues could make DeSantis the front runner for the Republican nomination, but as I suggested last week, if that happens I think Trump runs third party.

The real wild card is Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.

I don’t trust the Kennedy clan, and I was very hard on the family in my The Politically Incorrect Guide to Real American Heroes, but Kennedy is the most intriguing candidate who has announced so far.

He is good on foreign policy (the only real issue for the presidency), talks about real “reconciliation”, and has made the establishment Democrats squirm.

He has admitted he was wrong for believing establishment lies. That’s a plus.

He might even pick someone equally interesting as his running mate.

I hope Kennedy runs third party, or perhaps FOURTH party in 2024.

A four way race would be the most exciting thing to happen in a long time.

It might actually result in an establishment defeat.

All of this made for good Podcast fodder. I discuss DeSantis, Kennedy, and Lincoln “conservatives” on Episode 835 of The Brion McClanahan Show.

A Trump Appointed Judge Shreds the Constitution

With friends like these.

A Trump appointed judge in Tennessee struck down a Tennessee law that prohibited explicit drag shows in the general public. The bill required such events to be age restricted and indoors.

It did not shut them down. It did not tell drag performers they could not put on a show.

It only mandated that they be behind closed doors to those over 18.

You wonder why these people called it an infringement on their “1st Amendment rights”?


What are they really trying to do?

Regardless, this Trumpian black robe said the bill violated the 1st Amendment.


If this dope of a judge bothered to read any of the debates during the ratification of the Constitution or even the debates regarding the drafting of the 14th Amendment, he would have correctly ruled that this was not a federal issue and could not be heard in federal court. End of story. Case dismissed.

But this is what you get when you vote Republican. Every single time.

“We need more Republican judges” is like saying we need more ice picks in our eyeballs.

We’ve all seen how “Republican” judges keep issuing stupid ruling after stupid ruling. If Tennessee lawmakers and police had any guts, they would continue to enforce the bill and tell the feds to take a hike by invoking the 11th Amendment.

I won’t hold my breath.

The ruling made for a great Brion McClanahan Show episode.

Leftists Are Really Stupid

Sometimes you just have to bathe in the left’s stupidity.

Take for example their current assault on the federal courts.

You see, their entire political agenda has only been possible because of the federal court system.

When the Supreme Court seemed intent on undoing FDR’s New Deal, he pressured the Court to buckle and they did. The entire agenda should have been declared unconstitutional.

Progressive Hugo Black gave us the faulty doctrine of incorporation.

The Warren and Burger Courts codified the Great Society and Civil Rights movement under vague definitions of “constitutional rights.”

In other words, no Supreme Court, no leftist victories.

Which makes their current hand wringing over the Court laughable.

Of course, their attacks have a subtle qualification. Progressives want the Congress to remove the Court’s ability to invalidate federal law, but they also want to ensure that the Court can negate State law.

This is the exact opposite of what was argued during the ratification process.

In fact, the founding generation explicitly rejected a federal negative of State law, which is exactly what these nincompoops want.

They correctly understand that the States have always been the real obstacles to their Utopian idealism. Why? Because States reflect the political culture of their own constituents, not those form others States or sections.

There is a word for this: federalism.

And it’s beautiful.

Unless you are a progressive. Then Yankee imperialism is the only thing that matters. The endgame is power.

I discuss this idiocy on Episode 831 of The Brion McClanahan Show.

We Need to Boot the Neocons

Don’t get conned by the Neocons.

That should be a campaign slogan somewhere. Most Americans probably wouldn’t get it, but unfortunately most Americans have already been conned by the Neocons.

In both parties.

If you talk to people who have been around American politics for some time, they’ll tell you the Neocons weren’t much of a problem until the late 1970s.

Sure, they were around, but they were an almost insignificant minority in American politics, a bunch of disaffected liberals who wanted to go expand the American empire at all costs.

Their ardent Cold Warrior streak appealed to both conservatives and even some on the left. And they embraced at least the framework of the Great Society and the Civil Rights Movement.

You could say the same thing about many establishment Republicans beginning in the 1930s. Alf Landon’s 1936 presidential run didn’t look much different from Franklin Roosevelt’s. Landon even supported the Great Society later in life.

But the Neocons didn’t start playing much of a role in the general government until Ronald Reagan won in 1980. They were around in the Nixon and Ford administrations, but Reagan rolled out the red carpet, particularly after Mel Bradford was snubbed for an appointment to the NEH.

The Neocons always had a nose for power. That is their primary objective, even to this day.

Once embedded in Washington, they began dolling out federal grants and positions of power to their allies which allowed them to take over many of the important “intellectual” positions in the growing “conservative movement.”

One thing that made the neocons attractive to others on the right was their glowing support for Abraham Lincoln and the 1860s Republican Party. You see, only Southern conservatives (a group that has always been the real conservative backbone in America) found fault with “Honest Abe.” Old libertarians joined hands with their Southern brethren, but most other critics of “big government” thought St. Abraham was their patron saint, and they were willing to die on that hill.

They still are.

And that matters. You can’t conserve “conservatism” by supporting a 19th century leftist revolution. That will always circle back to the “remaking of America” in the 1860s.

That includes foreign policy, an area where he Neocons live and breathe.

They have never seen a war they didn’t like, particularly to “make the world safe for democracy.”

And now as Ron Unz points out in this superb piece, they are the establishment in both parties.

They dominate American foreign and domestic policy.

If we want to rid ourselves of the Neocons, we have to rid ourselves of their worthless 19th century progressive ideology. And that includes singing hosannas to Honest Abe.

I discuss Unz’s piece on Episode 816 of The Brion McClanahan Show.

We Should Listen to George Kennan

American foreign policy is a mess and has been since the early 1950s.

If we listened to George Kennan, that would not be the case.

Kennan is famously responsible for the “containment doctrine” following World War II, meaning that the United States should contain communism to the areas where it already existed.

Taken to its extreme, this involved the United States in several hot wars and extensive foreign adventurism during the last half of the twentieth century.

But Kennan was not responsible for the expansion of “containment” or “containment in action.” In fact, he worried that American foreign policy became far too militaristic and aggressive.

He also correctly understood that the American economy had become dependent on the “military industrial complex.”

The left needs the welfare state and the right needs the warfare state.

In both instances, we have a private/public cooperative that props up the economy.

If anyone thinks we are living in the free market, they are delusional.

Progressive “conservatives” like government spending as much as progressive leftists.

Those on the right want the “guns” while the left wants the “butter.”

The establishment likes guns and butter.

We get inflation and oppressive centralization along with a society dependent on government spending and easy credit.

Kennan predicted all of this. He also thought secession should be on the table.

We should have listened to George Kennan.

I discuss Kennan on Episode 815 of The Brion McClanahan Show.

Is Secession Workable?

With secession becoming a much more relevant topic in 2023, the question then becomes can it work?

Syracuse Professor Ryan Griffiths studies the topic from a global perspective. He thinks secession can and does work, but not in the United States.

Yet, this is an amazing development. Griffiths doesn’t use the same tired arguments that secession is illegal or the War settled it.


He just doesn’t think the United States has the right cultural ingredients for it to work.

We can quibble about that point, but I love it that a mainstream academic has abandoned the tired Lincolnian arguments that come from Righteous Cause Mythologists.

Griffiths even produced a college level textbook on secession.

That would have been impossible two decades ago.

This means three things:

1. Secessionists need to be taken seriously.

2. “Decentralization” education is working.

3. The Righteous Cause Myth is facing a decline.

Griffiths also argues that the real solution for American political problems can be found in federalism.

This may also be true, as I’ve argued for a long time.

Regardless, secession and decentralization is now becoming mainstream, and that is a beautiful thing.

I discuss Griffiths’s piece on Episode 814 of The Brion McClanahan Show.