On the eve of the New Year, it’s traditional to review the last year, take stock, celebrate, and maybe make some resolutions. Since I have a good memory, I often think back to many New Year’s Eves in the past, several decades ago in some cases – reflecting on what life was like then, what I was doing and thinking, who were the friends I was spending time with, etc.
It’s both sobering and troubling to think of how far we have come – or not – in recent years. America in the middle of the last century was a really special place – no question about it. In the wake of our hard fought victories against powerful fascist regimes in World War II, America was the “shining city on a hill,” the unchallenged leader of the Free World. And then came the quiet triumph of the defeat of Soviet and Eastern Bloc Communism in 1989-’91. With our fears of another world war seemingly put to rest, and the promise of the Internet’s information superhighway looming large, the 1990s seemed like “the end of [bad] history” was at hand.
But look at us today! After the reign of the Clintons (1993-2001), the Neocon empire building of George W. Bush (2001-2009), and the ascent to power of Obama (2009-2017) with our country now defined by corruption and “leading from behind,” we appear to be withering in the face of a rising Red China, an Islamist insurgency bent on world domination, and profoundly toxic societal, racial, class, and political divisions here at home.
Will we be able to weather the storms that we sense are coming in 2018 and make America great again?
I don’t have an easy answer to that question, other than to say that I honestly feel that there is considerable cause for optimism when assessing our immediate future. Little more than a year ago, almost everyone was predicting a Hillary Clinton victory in the 2016 presidential election. Somehow we were spared and that nightmare did not come to pass. It’s possible that the common sense conservatism that carried the day in 2016 could play a vital role again as new and even more daunting challenges emerge in 2018 and beyond.
One large unknowable that escaped the notice of the cognoscenti in 2016 is the rising tide of people in this country and around the world who are fed up with the sclerotic political status quo. Helping to accelerate this long overdue sea change in ordinary people’s opinions and attitudes are a wide variety of factors that didn’t exist until recently. These factors include the rise of independent alternative and citizen journalism made possible by new developments like social media whose viral influences can breach previous insurmountable boundaries, and the proliferation of smart handheld devices that have further democratized the flow of information. This entire emergent alternative information matrix did an end run around the mainstream media and helped to upend the political process and install insurgent candidate Donald Trump in the White House. A question now is, Can this tide of rising awareness defeat the forces of globalism in the ongoing infowar of attrition?
As a life long journalist, I have been trying to make sense of that and other related questions during the past year – writing for American Thinker and The Hagmann Report, and appearing regularly on The Hagmann Report prime time broadcast. In fact, my being welcomed into the Hagmann family of contributors and getting to work closely with Doug and Joe have been high points of the past year for me.
To shift these musings a bit more in a personal direction, I wanted to take this opportunity on the last day of 2017 to thank everyone who has followed me on Twitter, read my articles at American Thinker and The Hagmann Report, and watched or listened to my appearances on The Hagmann Report broadcasts.
As of today, 12/31/2017, I’ve been on Twitter for only 92 days, starting on the afternoon of the big solar eclipse last August. It was a tentative beginning, but it’s been an interesting and increasingly wild social media ride since then, and an inspiration for many new insights, as well.
I am humbled that almost 2,400 people have chosen to “follow” me on Twitter. I have tried to reach out by direct message to many of my new Twitter friends, and I always do my best to respond to messages that I receive. I am honored that Sean Hannity has retweeted me a number of times, and I have been retweeted as well by at least three other notable people who I also admire – Charles V. Payne, Mark Levin and – on two occasions – President Donald J. Trump.
My Twitter “followers” (I don’t really like that term but I don’t know of a better one) are a really interesting group of individuals. I always try to get a sense of who my new followers are by visiting their Twitter pages. It’s a diverse group of people representing many different backgrounds and walks of life, but mostly united by a love for our country and a hope that it can be cleansed of the corruption and decay that have taken root in the political and social fabric in recent decades.
Whatever our faith – and many of us are Christians – we all appear to be working hard to understand and come to grips with what exactly is going on in our upside down world – in the context of the unseen world where our Creator resides. It’s a life’s work to try to figure it all out in the midst of the disinformation and propaganda that are aimed at us in an unceasing full spectrum assault on our minds, bodies, and spirit.
The truth is out there but it can be hard to find. We’re frustrated by our country being sold out and apologized for during the 8+ years that preceded Donald Trump’s election. And wouldn’t it be nice if that frustration could be replaced by the joy of experiencing life in the USA as it once was, not that long ago, at the height of the American Century – great again, united again, populated by loyal un-hyphenated Americans and newcomers who really want to become Americans. Respecting our country’s traditions, history, heritage, laws, and Constitution – and our unique freedoms – without the bitter acrimony and toxic political polarization that currently divide us.
I hope to have the energy and stamina to continue into the new year doing what I have been doing for so many years – researching and writing as much as I can, as well as speaking out, about the important issues of the day. With a respect for accuracy, fairness, and balance – while trying to expose the truth in situations. I’ve had a lot of experience in this work but no one is perfect and I don’t claim to be infallible. I try to do my best, which is why researching, writing, and speaking are extremely time consuming, taking up almost every waking moment in the typical 7-day work week. Your prayers for all of us who are engaged in this work are much appreciated.
I truly hope that each one of you who is reading this is getting something worthwhile out of my efforts. And if you are, for those of you on Twitter I hope that you will consider retweeting some of my tweets that interest you to your followers so that my audience of readers can continue to grow. A writer like myself writes so that people will read him – and the more the merrier, especially since the subjects that I cover are so important. It’s not celebrities or other inane fluff that we’re talking about here but the present and future course – if not the very survival – of our beloved country.
On that note, my sincere thanks to each one of you for accompanying me in this journey. Best wishes for a happy, healthy, and productive New Year 2018! I hope to see you here on The Hagmann Report, at American Thinker, and at my Twitter page in the coming year.
Peter Barry Chowka is a veteran reporter and analyst of news on national politics, media, and popular culture. He writes most often these days for American Thinker and The Hagmann Report. A selection of Peter’s recent video Skype interviews on The Hagmann Report video broadcast is available at his new YouTube playlist “Between the Lines” here. For announcements and links to a wide selection of Peter’s published work, follow him on Twitter @pchowka.