Clifton just published (again, as it turns out) a call to action for his brand of politics:
Are you frustrated with the current state of the NCGOP? Start organizing your like-minded friends to take over — or at least build a sizeable contingent within — your precinct and your county party organization. The county party organization makes the decisions about who goes to the state convention. That’s where the platform AND the party chairman are decided on. He who shows up, wins. That’s how it works.
Setting aside Brant Clifton and his brand of conservatism, I understand the attractive pull of some of the basic assumptions underpinning economic populism (and the alienation that goes with it):
Culture War is class war.
"Conventional Wisdom" is the path to stagnation.
Big-time "globalization" -- international deals under the banner of "free trade" -- benefit corporations at the expense of workers.
Globalization moved manufacturing jobs to China (and elsewhere).
The deindustrialization of the US because of globalization destroyed working-class families.
I can recognize how much of their alienation I might have shared with many who stormed the Capitol on January 6th a year ago. Minus the fundamentally illiberal impulse to fall in behind a selfish and cruel "strong man" who has promised to right all wrongs if only he can be given all the power.