Noah Smith asks how did Alt-right Nativism go Main Stream
This is a brilliant Twitter essay. Click the link, but I think it can be partly summarized with the first and last two tweets.
1/I noticed Brit Hume defending Tucker Carlson’s remarks about diversity today, and it made me think about how ideas go from the political extremes to the political mainstream. I kind of have a model in my head for how this process happens.
if media entrepreneurs like Bannon and Carlson had chosen to focus on things like kneeling football players or trade wars or MeToo, the issue of diversity might have been a side issue, and lots of people on the Right might be pro-immigration libertarians to this day!
20/Thus do media entrepreneurs harness the incredible power of oppositional, tribal thinking to control our minds and tell us what to believe.
I have three thoughts.
1) read Noah not me.
2) It is interesting that some people are so smart that they can overcome the twittyness of Twitter and write well using it as a platform and medium (see also @HeerJeet). Noah is careful to include a link in each tweet, so each point is supported by evidence (one can trust or click) and his typed text is an abstract of a longer essay. Also he has a valid point.
3) Of course he leaves things out.
He focuses on Steve Bannon and Tucker Carlson. The idea (already perfectly summarized in his last tweet) is that conservatives can be made to argue for anything by provacateurs who provoke liberals into arguing against it. He notes that he left Trump out of it. I have to add two things.
His stream doesn’t mention Obama. I think it is clear that the election of a half Kenyan president provoked nativists. They basically said so. The also brilliant Ezra Klein explains here.
I would also mention the research of Theda Scocpal and students. They went to Tea Parties and talked to people. They noted that the kept hearing about illegal immigrants and not about deficits or bailouts.
I think most right wing Americans were nativists ten years ago. The conservative elite are opinion followers as much as opinion leaders. Another story about the mainstreaming of xenophobia is “I must catch up with those people because I am their leader” Ledru-Rollin 1848. Having presented evidence from 1848 that this is nothing new, I still want to suggest that new media make it more possible for ordinary people to guide the leaders with clicks and comments and such.
In conclusion, I suspect that, given the xenophobia of the base, the conservative elit mainstream was bound to follow. entrepreneurs in media and elsewhere find niches, that doesn’t meant they create them. After the jump I will make a strained analogy.
What about the mainstreaming on the left. I was thinking of Medicare for all, and now also the $15 minimum wage. In both cases, pollsters showed that most US adults support policy which the inside the beltway power elite considered radically left wing. What you hear now from Democrats who want to be elected president in 2020 (and really think they have a chance) is what one could have read a decade ago in the work of Ms median poll respondent.
For all three issues, elite opinion was a compromise between the views of ordinary people (fortunately in the case of xenophobia a majority of Republicans but a minority of US adults) and the views of the rich and concentrated interests.
So the “take our country back” Tea Party was presented as motivated by concerns about deficits (hardly anybody cares about the deficit but rich people who are sure that the necessary fiscal correction will cost them millions do). The minimum wage is frowned upon by elite non-economists who haven’t kept up with the literature. The insurance industry has been able to block reforms which are popular and which work in all other developed countries. But not forever.
Il El pueblo unido jamás será vencido also when the people are Volkisch
It’s the internet, social media and the 27%.
Before this current technology, the 27% had to live around the edges, careful not to allow their thoughts to be heard by the other 73%. Though of course another 23% would say or do nothing about the 27% unless everyone else brought it into the open, in which case they would attack the 27%.
Combine that with liberals who were aghast, aghast at Clinton calling deplorables actual deplorables, and the 27% has an open field. Remember Obama’s guns and religion comments? Same thing. In reality, both were stone cold accurate. Yet the left shuddered with political correctness, and the 27% rejoiced.
Here’s a thought. Liberals need to call these people what they are deplorables. Or just stone cold racists. Make them pay a price for their thoughts and votes. But that’s just the 27%, and they wear it ass a badge of honor(though in private when necessary). They are beyond hope, so we need to take it to the 23% who vote with them, telling them hen you vote for stone cold racists, you are a stone cold racist.
Of course they will not vote Dem for any reason, but maybe, just maybe, you can make them embarrassed enough to stay home.
Think that is too much? It is not enough.
“Turns out, there was a reason why DeSantis gave Florida Republicans the shakes. He is more than a bit of a white rider. From The Washington Post.
DeSantis, elected to represent north-central Florida in 2012, appeared at the David Horowitz Freedom Center conferences in Palm Beach, Fla., and Charleston, S.C., in 2013, 2015, 2016 and 2017, said Michael Finch, president of the organization. At the group’s annual Restoration Weekend conferences, hundreds of people gather to hear right-wing provocateurs such as Stephen K. Bannon, Milo Yiannopoulos and Sebastian Gorka sound off on multiculturalism, radical Islam, free speech on college campuses and other issues.
Donald Trump Holds “Make America Great Again” Rally In Tampa
Getty ImagesJoe Raedle
Fellow speakers included a former Google engineer who was fired after arguing that “biological causes” in part explain why there are relatively few women working in tech and leadership; a critic of multiculturalism who has written that “Europe is committing suicide” by welcoming large numbers of refugees and immigrants; and a British media personality who urged the audience to keep the United States from becoming like the United Kingdom, where “discrimination against whites is institutionalized and systemic.”
If this reminds you of a classic op-ed from The Onion, you’re not wrong.
On Aug. 31, the Tallahassee Democrat reported that an unknown number of Florida voters received anti-Gillum robo-calls paid for by a neo-Nazi group in Idaho called the Road to Power. The automated calls were narrated by someone speaking in an exaggerated minstrel dialect who was pretending to be Gillum, with junglelike sounds in the background. Efforts to reach the group for comment were unsuccessful, and the DeSantis campaign denounced the calls as “appalling and disgusting.”
By the way, if you’re one of those sad people who can’t understand how this president* ever happened in the Republican Party, you should take a look at some of the past speakers/attendees at these White Camellia hoedowns.
Guest speakers at its conferences over the past five years have included Republican members of Congress, former governors Rick Perry of Texas and Mike Huckabee of Arkansas, young conservative activists James O’Keefe and Ben Shapiro, and right-wing European politicians Nigel Farage and Geert Wilders.
A sufficient number of people in this country want to be governed by outright white supremacists to force the rest of us to live under them. Chew on that for a while.”
fen governor off florida
Sorry, but this thread is dumb. The “Alt-Right” is financed right out of Israel and the money is cleaned in eastern russia. Noah Smith needs to think about other things to write about. Nativist they are not. Zionist they are. Without Jewish debt expansion, they would not exist as would not the scam of “western civilization”. The great con is, people like Smith create dialects around this.
Diversity or no diversity, DeSantis is a half breed. He is less racially pure than the candidate he is going against. Sorta reminds you of the guy that the electoral college put in the white house.
DNA test the “road to power” people. Please, just DNA test them. You will find will the rainbow ends.
You are a pathetic mole person who should not be permitted to post on this blog.
So I got an e-mail of your latest comment. I honestly read it as
“Bull Shit, you are a pathetic mole person who should not be permitted to post on this blog” and surfed over to check if you were calling me a mole person.
Now I guess BS stands for Bert Schlitz not bull shit.
Robert, it is not you