Lev Radin



November is Really About the 1980s, and 2028.

Put aside the neon fashion and bad cars for a moment, the United States during the 1980s, specifically the latter half of the decade, was an enjoyable time. To quote The Notorious B.I.G., we had all the Mikes: Tyson, Jordan, Jackson. We had Indiana Jones, Rocky Balboa, and the real American, the WWF’s Hulk Hogan. We had Maverick and Iceman hitting the highway to the danger zone. Kids had G.I. Joe, Transformers, He-Man and She-Ra, even Care Bears when we needed them.

Former U.S. President Ronald Reagan understood these good times well. America had scars from Vietnam and the Iranian hostage crisis. America needed a good communicator with some humor thrown in, but this person needed a sense of strength. I was a huge Tom Clancy fan, and his books were flooded with Reagan rhetoric and themes of American values, technology, and superiority. After winning the Cold War in real life, America once again became a stabilizing force for the world.

The 1980s were also a good time for Donald Trump. He published The Art of the Deal in 1987. He bought the Plaza Hotel. Trump attended his first Republican National Convention in 1988 “to see how it works.” He was invited by the Bush family.

As he often says on social media and in public, Trump wants to return to this era. Many Generation X and older millennial Americans growing up in the 1980s want to return to this. We yearn for it. We hunger for the time before cell phones, social media, and disinformation. A time where we can “knock on the door and we will be waiting for you.” People were more relaxed, and calmer. The decade had a sense of optimism and excitement about the future. We had fun, we dreamed big, and we laughed.

Today, we are no longer laughing in a good way. When it comes to American politics, it’s one of those laughs that slowly turns into tears then turns into wailing screams.

A Biden-Trump rematch? Seriously?

At the deepest core of our being, Americans are tired of the negativity. We are tired of the noise. We are tired of the blaming and the bickering. To use Paul Graham’s Hierarchy of Disagreement, we are tired of our politicians using the bottom of the pyramid – name-calling and ad hominem- attacking the individual without addressing the substance of the argument.

People are also getting the wrong idea about politics. It’s not the soundbites on YouTube shorts, TikTok or X. Americans don’t want an authoritarian leader like Putin. You better believe we deeply value our freedoms. One must never forget this fact or I’m sure a Texan will remind you.

Trump finds support with a significant chunk of the electorate because of those shared words, that shared “vision” with Reagan: “Make America Great Again.” This doesn’t mean we as America support a new style of brutalism. We don’t want the Trump who wants to get even, or on the flip side, the Democrats trying every tactic imaginable to destroy the former president. We don’t want a Washington where no one can agree on anything. We want the Trump like former U.S. President Barack Obama said about Reagan, where the Gipper: “tapped into what people were already feeling, which was, we want clarity, we want optimism, we want a return to that sense of dynamism and entrepreneurship that had been missing.” We want that Trump, but moreover, we want this positivity and philosophy in 2028 and further into the 21st century.

I want the above so badly that I’m running for public office for the first time. I’m on the ballot for the Texas House of Representatives in November.

I’m your classical old-style GOP-er, but one who grew up in the 1980s. The world needs an America that is a stabilizing presence. We don’t want a country that is weak, that can’t even pass spending bills and is nine trillion dollars in debt. I lean towards the more Arnold Schwarzenegger type, minus the money, muscles, and accent. “Former Governor” Arnold Schwarzenegger has admirable aspects. His upbeat attitude is a highly beneficial trait that we don’t see in today’s polarized politics. I believe Schwarzenegger and others want to make democracy work the way our Founding Fathers intended.

America needs leaders who care about our freedoms and our country, not about lining their pockets with riches. In Austin alone, you get a sense that more well-known people like Elon Musk and Joe Rogan are slowly getting more involved in the political realm. What starts with a podcast or buying Twitter must lead to more. They have children, they love Texas and America, and they care about humanity.

Whoever ends up taking the reins and helps America ride into the future, let them remember the wise words of the one Lance Morrow who said our country is mourning “for the moral clarity that has been lost, a sense of common purpose that has all but evaporated.”