Saturday, June 29, 2019

the lazy, helpless, victimized right

I'd say I lean right on matters of economics and geopolitics. On social matters (e.g., gay marriage, reproductive rights, etc.), my opinions are, I think, a bit more left-friendly, although I don't see the federal government as a panacea for social problems (e.g., homelessness) that really ought to be solved at the state and local level. I spend more column-inches, these days, castigating the left than castigating the right, and that's mainly because—and I think leftist Tim Pool has concluded the same thing—it's currently the left that's gone more batshit insane. Does the right harbor its own insanity? Of course it does, but that insanity is utterly eclipsed by the torrent of toxic nonsense coming out of the left during the Trump era—and much of it seems to have been provoked by the accession of Trump to the Oval Office. Trump didn't cause all this toxicity: he revealed it.

But there are reasons why I could never declare myself a full-on rightie. Bigotry is one. My rightie readers, who aren't bigots, will probably rush to point out that the righties they know and associate with aren't Nazis, sexists, homophobes, etc. And I'd believe those readers. But the evidence of free-speech platforms like Gab shows that right-wing bigotry, of exactly the sort the left complains about, is alive and well, and possibly also growing and festering. The left is paranoid about a lot of things, but it isn't paranoid to be worried about rightie bigotry. (I've addressed the issue of leftie bigotry multiple times, and that isn't the topic of the current post, so no tu quoque fallacies in the comments, please.)

Below is a moment where my irritation got the better of me on Gab. The /pol/ News Network regularly puts out its slanted posts (tweets are called "gabs" on Gab, but I'm still not comfortable writing "gabs"), some of which I agree with, and many of which I don't. What follows is yet more fodder for Jewish-conspiracy-theory assholes who are convinced—like many radical Muslims—that the Jews have taken over all the major institutions and are soon going to destroy or enslave the world. When I first joined Gab, I was shocked at the number of antisemitic righties there were, all of whom are utterly convinced the Jews are slowly but surely drawing their plans against the rest of us. Behold:

Along with bigotry is the question of rightie hypocrisy, especially when it comes to, say, the notion of a victim mentality. The right constantly beats the left over the head by saying that lefties are pussy-ass whiners who do nothing about their lot in life and act as if the world owes them something. But then along comes Patrick Bet-David, whom I just blogged about, and he says out loud something I've been thinking for at least a year: if the right is blubbering about how the left owns the media, why aren't rich righties buying up those same media outlets instead of letting this shit happen to them? Here—watch. I've cued up the exact moment in Bet-David's exchange with Jordan Peterson where this question comes up (listen through to at least 47:20):

The discussion continues beyond the band of time I've indicated; Peterson says, moments later, that the right has been slow to recognize the necessity of having such media platforms. In my opinion, this may be a flaw inherent in the conservative mentality itself: if you're always looking backward, and you're always suspicious of the new, it's hard to see the dangers that lie ahead. I suspect that a large proportion of conservatives score fairly low on "openness to experience" among the so-called "Big Five" personality traits. Liberals, who are much more open to novelty, are more likely to seize upon new technobaubles simply because they're new. This puts them at an advantage, and it probably explains why so many tech-related phenomena are dominated by the left. (True, the left also dominates moribund, dinosaur media like newspapers, but rest assured that we won't have those in a few decades.)

The Peterson/Bet-David exchange is consistent with the accusation of rightie laziness that I had made in an earlier post:

Alt-tech has no choice but to create an entire parallel market if free speech is to be preserved, and precisely this has been a weakness of the right from the beginning: it often lazily refuses to fight for its own existence, being content to (1) lazily rely on platforms made by people who do not have the right's interests at heart, then to (2) lazily complain when the censorship and deplatforming start.

If the right can't even recognize that it's already in the middle of an existentially important fight, and if individual righties can't be motivated to pick up the same sword and shield of vociferous activism that the left has employed for years, then the right deserves to fade into irrelevance. Too fat and lazy to defend itself, it ought to die a corpulent, indolent loner's bleak and ignoble death—hopefully to make room for something better.

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