2018’s Top Ten Posts

2018 was a good year for The Portly Politico.  I relaunched the blog back over the summer, when I had more time to write multiple pieces a week.  With the South Carolina primary elections, it’s not surprising that some of the most traffic hit during June.

Just like the 2016 election, I was unable to dedicate the time necessary to covering the 2018 midterm elections; perhaps my greatest deficiency as a blogger is the inability to post regularly during the school year, a function of both a lack of time and focus (and, very likely, a lack of discipline).  While the blog has not gained the traction I’d hoped for six months ago, it’s been an entertaining way to put some of my thoughts to “paper,” as it were, and get some interesting feedback from you, my small coterie of loyal readers.

All navel-gazing aside, here are 2018’s Top Ten Posts, as determined by the number of views:

10.) SC Primary Run-Off Election Results – the title says it all!  I think some wayward Googlers boosted this one into the top ten.

9.) #MAGAWeek2018 – George Washington – during the Fourth of July week, I kicked off what will become an annual observance:  MAGA Week.  Each day featured an essay about some figure or idea that had made America great in his or its own way.  While I’m most proud of my lengthy overview of the career of John Quincy Adams, the post on George Washington gained the most traction with readers—a deserved victory for America’s most influential Founding Father.

8.) A Discourse on Disclaimers – I got so sick of endlessly qualifying every statement, I wrote this protesting post.  One thing the Trump presidency has taught us is that you’re never going to appease the progressives, so you’ve gotta fight back.  You’re never going to able to mollify an emotional, inherently violent beast with an appeal to decency and reason, so why bother?

7.) SCOTUS D&D – one of the lighter works of the Brett Kavanaugh character assassination, this post linked to another author’s attempt to place the Supreme Court justices on the legendary Dungeons and Dragons alignment chart.  Very fun.

6.) Progressivism and Political Violence – one of my best pieces, I would argue.  This post detailed the strong link between the progressive ideology and violence, be it the official use of state violence to enforce its way, or street-level thuggery when it’s been systematically denied the levers of power.  If Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg kicks the bucket in 2019 and President Trump and the Republican Senate successfully appoint and confirm a conservative justice to replace her, I shudder to contemplate the hysterical bloodshed that will result as masked Antifa goons and hipster black boots take to the streets.

5.) #TBT: It’s a Thanksgiving Miracle – the only “Throwback Thursday” post to make the top ten, this was a reposting of the old blog’s 2017 Thanksgiving post, which I wrote with a freshly broken left wrist.  We all have a great deal to thank God for this year.

4.) America Should Expand into Space – one of my early pieces during the 2018 relaunch argued that the United States should make a concerted effort to continue expanding into outer space.  Why get our precious rare-earth metals from China when we can mine them from asteroids?  Speaking of…

3.) Breaking: President Trump Creates Space Force – I whooped with joy when President Trump announced the creation of Space Force.  Apparently, many readers were excited about it, too.  It’s a commonsense move:  space is the next, and final, frontier.  Why cede dominance—military, economic, cultural, or otherwise—to the ChiComs?  Make America Space Again!

2.) 4.8% Economic Growth?! – one of the first posts upon relaunching the blog, this little piece drew a good bit of attention (and probably benefited from the initial curiosity traffic).  Let the good times roll!

1.) Run-Off Elections in SC Primaries Today – this post blew all others away, with (at the time of this writing) 101 more views than its next competitor.  I was shocked, but the blog showed up in several online search results as South Carolinians sought out information about the primary run-off elections this past summer.

So there you have it!  My personal favorites didn’t always gain the traction I hoped—and some of my better essays were nowhere near the top ten—but that’s the fun of blogging:  you never know what’s going to catch readers’ attention.

Thank you all for a wonderful 2018.  Here’s looking forward to bigger and better things in 2019!

God Bless, and Happy New Year!

–The Portly Politico


A Very Dokken Christmas, Part III: Under Lock and Key

My three-part series of Dokken reviews comes to an end—on Christmas!  Thanks to photog, proprietor of Orion’s Cold Fire, for the opportunity to contribute some hard rock/heavy metal reviews.

The final review in the A Very Dokken Christmas series covers 1985’s Under Lock and Key, an excellent album from start to finish:  http://orionscoldfire.com/index.php/2018/12/24/portly-politico-a-very-dokken-christmas-part-iii-under-lock-and-key/

In case you missed them, here are my other recent reviews:

Stay tuned to this blog and www.orionscoldfire.com for more reviews.

Never unchain the night—and have a Merry Christmas!

“Silent Night” turns 200

One of my favorite Christmas carols, “Silent Night,” turns 200 this Christmas season.

The carol was originally written as a poem in the aftermath of the Napoleonic Wars by a village priest, Joseph Mohr, in the village of Oberndorf, Austria, in 1816. Two years later, Mohr approached the town’s choirmaster and organist, Franz Xaver Gruber, to set the poem to music. Gruber agreed, and the carol enjoyed its first performance to a small congregation, which universally enjoyed its simple sweetness.

Since then, the humble hymn has spread far and wide, and is probably the most recognizable Christmas carol globally today. It’s been covered (likely) thousands of times; it’s certainly become a staple of my various Christmas performances.

This simple, sweet, powerful carol beautifully tells the story of Christ’s birth, as well as the import of that transformative moment in history, that point at which God became Flesh, and sent His Son to live among us.

As much as I enjoy classic hard rock and heavy metal, nothing can beat the tenderness of “Silent Night”—except the operatic majesty of “O, Holy Night,” objectively the best Christmas song ever written.

Merry Christmas, and thank God for sending us His Son, Jesus Christ.

Reblog: Who doesn’t like Christmas? — Esther’s Petition

A poignant piece from Esther’s Petition, an excellent blog about faith.  It’s been a tough Christmas season for some friends of mine, with death and heartbreak hovering around and darkening the usual brightness of this season.  Ms. Cox writes beautifully—wrenchingly—about how the holidays can be difficult, and how we should strive to be understanding of that […]

Judge Troll

An amusing story from the 2018 elections:  it’s a humorous, if somewhat reckless, example of a conservative striking back with cheeky aplomb.

After losing to his Democratic opponent, Judge Glenn Devlin of Houston decided to release juvenile defendants, rescheduling their cases to the first week in January 2019, when his opponent takes office.

From the piece linked above:

A day after Judge Glenn Devlin of Houston lost his reelection bid, he released nearly all of the juvenile defendants who appeared before him, as long as they answered no when he asked if they planned to kill anyone.

Devlin, one of the 59 Republican jurists in Harris County who was replaced by Democrats, allegedly said: “This is obviously what the voters wanted,” when he released juveniles who have been charged with a wide range of crimes, according to ABC 10.

The trolling here is brilliant:  Democrats are ever-eager to excuse criminal behavior in an endless cycle of catch-and-release.  So, if the voters want Democratic judges, give them the logical outcome of Democratic criminal justice policies—hoodlums back on the streets.



Patriots Would Pitch In for the Wall

An interesting piece from Breitbart about President Trump’s proposed wall: https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2018/12/19/poll-one-third-of-republicans-would-pitch-in-to-build-wall/

It seems that a third of Republicans surveyed would be willing to make a personal contribution (or pay more in taxes; it’s a bit unclear which) to build the border wall.

Meanwhile, 97% voters opposed to President Trump also oppose funding the border wall.

I’m open to the argument that the wall might not be an effective enforcement tool—to be clear, I disagree with that argument, but I understand where its proponents are coming from—but I suspect that’s not the case for the bulk of that 97%.

A border is one of the most basic elements of what makes a state a state—or a nation a nation. It’s inherent in the definition of what it means to be a sovereign state.

As such, securing the border seems like a logical, natural thing for a nation to pursue. In my mind, that includes the construction of a border wall.

Yes, I’m familiar with the usual objections: it’s expensive; modern air travel would diminish a wall’s effectiveness; technology can fill the same role. But an actual, physical wall is a powerful symbol that America takes border enforcement seriously, that as a nation we not only will build physical barriers to keep out dishonest invaders, we’ll also enforce those laws on the books.

The message to the world for the past thirty years has been “we have laws, but they’re just a suggestion; get here, and we’ll figure out how to keep you in and get you bennies.” A wall sends a different message: “if you’re going to come, you’d better do it right. Don’t think about sneaking in.”

In short, if there’s a GoFundMe or Kickstarter for the border wall, I’ll pitch in. Every patriot should—and would. Or President Trump can stick to his guns, refuse any budget deal that doesn’t fund at least part of the wall, and keep his greatest campaign promise.

Build the Wall!

UPDATE: after writing this post, but before it was published, I happened to receive an e-mail from a friend to a fundraiser to raise $1 billion toward the Border Wall. You can contribute to it here: https://ca.gofundme.com/TheTrumpWall