July 5th, 2017

Tonedeaf bully CNN threatens the gif-giver

This has become the lead story on memeorandum:

Reddit user “HanA**holeSolo” first shared the GIF last Wednesday of Trump pummeling a wrestler with CNN’s logo imposed on his face. CNN could find no earlier instance of the GIF. The GIF was later edited into a video with sound and tweeted by the President on Sunday.

On Reddit, “HanA**holeSolo” took credit for inspiring the tweet. Soon after, “HanA**holeSolo’s” other posts on Reddit, some of which included racist and anti-Semitic imagery, quickly circulated on social media.

Now the user is apologizing, writing in a lengthy post on Reddit that he does not advocate violence against the press and expressing remorse there and in an interview with CNN for other posts he made that were racist and anti-Semitic.

The apology came after CNN’s KFile identified the man behind “HanA**holeSolo.” Using identifying information that “HanA**holeSolo” posted on Reddit, KFile was able to determine key biographical details, to find the man’s name using a Facebook search and ultimately corroborate details he had made available on Reddit.

It’s good to see that incisive and bold investigative reporting is not dead at CNN.

CNN also maintains it didn’t “threaten” the guy. Yeah, right:

After posting his apology, “HanA**holeSolo” called CNN’s KFile and confirmed his identity. In the interview, “HanA**holeSolo” sounded nervous about his identity being revealed and asked to not be named out of fear for his personal safety and for the public embarrassment it would bring to him and his family.

CNN is not publishing “HanA**holeSolo’s” name because he is a private citizen who has issued an extensive statement of apology, showed his remorse by saying he has taken down all his offending posts, and because he said he is not going to repeat this ugly behavior on social media again. In addition, he said his statement could serve as an example to others not to do the same.

CNN reserves the right to publish his identity should any of that change.

No need to threaten him overtly. The message is clear.

So far I haven’t found many people, even those who are rabidly anti-Trump, defending CNN in any but the most lukewarm of fashions. I think this action on the part of CNN has made most people uncomfortable. I called CNN “tonedeaf” in the title of this post because they seem to be very very proud of themselves despite all this.

I suppose it depends what CNN’s goals are. If the goal is good PR, I think they lose on this one. But if the goal is to intimidate other people into refraining from making videos that ridicule CNN (and I think that was the main goal) I think they also lose, because it turns out that a lot of people have reacted by being inspired to follow in HanA’s footsteps:

It was foreseeable that to identify someone on the internet for coming up with a funny meme substituting a CNN logo for Vince McMahon’s head and threaten to doxx him for that meme would generate a reaction not entirely consistent with good public-relations outcomes. Strangely CNN didn’t recognize those foreseeable results in advance; they’re recognizing them now, as smartasses from Maine to Hawaii are now rushing to Photoshop to produce creative ridicule.

If you follow the link I just gave, you can find a compilation of efforts in that vein.

I suppose CNN could throw all its resources into playing whack-a-mole against the proliferation of this mockery, but they wouldn’t have time to do much else. Of course, in CNN’s case that might be a good thing.

And to save them the trouble in my case, I Denounce Myself.

[NOTE: By the way, here’s the example I located of HanA’s anti-Semitism. It’s the sort of thing you see every day from literally millions of sites all around the internet, and many are a lot worse. Obviously I don’t approve of it, but I think it’s ludicrous that the person creating this was threatened to be outed by CNN for this sort of thing, only because he made fun of CNN by portraying them as a WWE wrestler being slammed by Trump.

Let me also remind CNN that this type of wrestling ordinarily does not involve real violence and/or intentional injury. The wrestlers are in good physical shape and trained to do this, and although sometimes accidents do happen and someone is injured—because it’s a very physical activity that uses a lot of force—the goal is entertainment and the wrestlers try to protect each other during the process. Only the gullible think the hatred and the intent to hurt is real.]

134 Responses to “Tonedeaf bully CNN threatens the gif-giver”

  1. Israel Says:

    Yet CNN will still keep their sources anonymous- even the ones that seem to have lied/misled them.

  2. Sam L. Says:

    If I didn’t already find CNN worthless, this is one more reason to do so.

  3. T Says:

    Ann Althouse’s take: “Absolutely despicable.”

    Jon Gabriel’s take (as quoted in AOSHQ): “For all the criticism of Trump’s self-defeating tweets, his steady attacks on CNN have provoked the network to reveal how awful they truly are. Perhaps the President can Tweet a new video in which CNN body-slams itself.”

    Related from Gaypatriot.net (Jeff I Love Capitalism 07-03-17 “They Cant Help Themselves”): “I see Trump’s strategy now. It’s a brand-poisoning exercise. Trump is triggering the media to self-destroy their brand; to put themselves in the political fray, with their own pettiness and weakness on display.”

    Is anyone thinking Hulk Hogan v. Gawker yet?

  4. Dave Says:

    liberals are mostly sinners of pride thinking that their superior ideology makes them perfect people and infallible that they will never become the monsters they vowed to defeat. This unawareness of one’s shortcomings and overconfidence of one’s ability to resist the temptation of powers have always lead to a good liberal’s downfall. In America Sniper Chris’ father tell this to his child “I am gonna kill you if you ever turn into a wolf” Christianity and its child capitalism is better than Socialism because Christianity has a self-correct mechanism based on the belief of the existence of temptation and redemption. Socialism doesn’t have that, Socialists believe they are infallible and whenever something is not working right, instead of retracting and rethinking their positions, believing that they are infallible leads them to double down and march on until tragedy happens.

  5. Somebody Says:

    Agreed that CNN’s behavior here is really atrocious.

    It does make me wonder: which bothers everyone here more, CNN’s behavior or the fact that there’s a small but noisy community of proto-fascists who are explicitly racist and antisemetic who have openly embraced Donald Trump as a vehicle for enacting their world view, and from whom Trump has repeatedly drawn rhetorical inspiration?

    Like, CNN’s behavior is wrong but the other one is a direct threat to liberal democracy.

  6. neo-neocon Says:

    Somebody:

    I think you know the answer to your own question. But I’ll answer it anyway, because I feel like it.

    It’s not an either/or thing. One can be against both quite strongly. The difference, though, between the white supremicists in the alt-right and CNN as a thug is that the latter is far far more powerful at the moment. If at any time a group of Fascists got far far more numerous (it’s a very small group now) and became much more of a force in the US, it would be very very disturbing to most of the people here. I wrote several posts condemning that portion of the alt-right during Trump’s campaign, and people weighed in here too on the subject.

    The vast vast VAST majority of people on the right have no tolerance whatsoever for Fascism. In fact, the left is more allied with Fascism in its “ends justifies the means” philosophy and its support of big government. You might want to read Jonah Goldberg’s book Liberal Fascism if you haven’t already done so. It’s quite fascinating.

    On the other hand, at the moment CNN is in a position of enormous power and control. Actually, it’s not “at the moment.” It’s been true for decades. They are abusing that power, big time. They are to be condemned.

    Oh, and by the way, CNN’s behavior is “a direct threat to liberal democracy.” When the press uses its power to expose a citizen for making a mildly funny protest video against CNN, then that is very much a threat.

  7. T Says:

    “. . . CNN’s behavior is wrong but the other one is a direct threat to liberal democracy.” [Somebody says @ 2:22]

    Not to excuse hatred in any form, one will always find small vocal fringe groups; survivalists, off-gridders, the Branch Davidians, even the Klan. They are hardly a threat to democracy until they morph into something with national/international influence.

    CNN by contrast already has (or at least had until now) national/international influence. Only a CNN apologist could denounce its Mafia-like extortion coupled with its national reach as just wrong but otherwise not threatening to our democracy.

  8. neo-neocon Says:

    T:

    CNN body-slamming itself.

    That’s a good one. That’s really what’s happening here, isn’t it? Give them enough rope and they will reveal themselves.

  9. neo-neocon Says:

    T:

    Please see my reply to “Somebody,” right above yours. You and I were posting comments at approximately the same time.

  10. T Says:

    and a follow up thought:

    I don’t see much of a difference here between CNN’s extortionist threat of doxing compared to the arrest of Nakoula Bassely Nakoula’s arrest for the video “inspiring” the Benghazi disaster.

    Frankly, this makes me believe that we really did dodge a bullet with the defeat of HRC last November. Can one imagine the damage that these two like minds would have caused?

  11. Big Maq Says:

    Neither is looking all that good nowadays.

    One could argue that behaving irresponsibly beyond a threshold, even though within their rights to do so (free speech and all), is a threat to liberal democracy.

    Which should we be most upset or concerned about is not quite the right question, as it comes across as just another blue vs red team type argument.

    What is dangerous is when we all fall for blue vs red team politics and let such things slide when we think it serves our own side, and don’t hold our own accountable.

    This enables and encourages more of the same irresponsibility and it escalates from there.

    There is much more to this, but this is sufficient for now.

  12. Somebody Says:

    I have read the book! I think its argument is facile at best. I realize this is a rabbit hole, but fascism is absolutely in every way a right wing movement, and I suspect Goldberg’s book was a misguided but completely understandable reaction to a bad habit by liberals of painting modern American conservatives as akin to fascists because fascism is a right wing movement, which is of course absurd but is also a lazy ad hominen to make. I’ve repeatedly argued here that people are not responsible for the actions of other people because they’re tangentially connected by ideas or even a shared intellectual history. (As a fun aside, Saladin jihadists have intellectual roots in the works of late 19th century Islamic reform movements that were explicitly modeled on liberal European nationalism, but the two obviously have nothing to do with each other anymore than Paul Ryan has to do with Hitler.)

    I also think you misunderstand the role of force in fascist ideology; fascism didn’t contend that the ends justified the means, but rather that the means were ends in and of themselves, that violence was an ideal and liberating mode of political activity. Umberto Eco’s essay on ur-fascism is a brilliant elucidation, highly recommend.

    Anyhoo, I’m glad that you’re comfortable enough with the threat posed by the alt-right’s proto-fascism, explicit racism, calls to violence, and total embrace of Donald Trump. I’m much more worried! But I think the piece missing from your comment is that Donald Trump himself has repeatedly drawn from the well of their discourse, including but not limited to the CNN gif, which these junior fascists have explicitly treated as an endorsement by the president. Doesn’t that worry you? That Trump has repeatedly used iconography produced by actual fascists who believe the president of the United States has endorsed them? Like, doesn’t that reflect some critically important influence that deserves more attention than if they were a fringe group without the endorsement of a sitting president?

  13. T Says:

    Neo (@ 2:32),

    I couldn’t agree more.

    I also wonder if this could be the coupe de grace of the remaining MSM influence? I don’t expect it will ever stop during Trump’s administration, but It is possible (likely?) that MSM influence will now be even more exponentially lessened from this point on so that instead of a media war, we will see the Trump administration fighting isolated media skirmishes.

    We shall see.

    One thing for sure, Trump has already disproved the old maxim of “never pick a fight with someone who buys ink by the barrel.”

  14. Ymar Sakar Says:

    That’s why I’m not on facebook and have conducted personal opsec since 2001.

    Then again, I was never under the delusion some President I supported would save me from all the terrors and errors of the Leftist alliance. Good luck with that hope and change.

  15. Ymar Sakar Says:

    CNN can punch back 100x harder on you too. And like Joe the Plumber, wishing for some god in the DC sky to save you isn’t going to do you much good.

  16. T Says:

    “fascism is absolutely in every way a right wing movement,” [Somebody Says @ 2:48]

    You are quite simply and decidedly wrong. Period.

    The protptypical 20th century fascists were the Nazis. Nazi is a shoprtened form of Nazional Sozialismus, that is National SOCIALISM. People always respond to that point with the question, “then why were the Nazis and the Communists enemies in WW II?” In fact they weren’t at first (the Molotov/Von Ribbentrop Pact); they became enemies because they were both after the same thing; the domination of Europe.

  17. Ymar Sakar Says:

    We shall see.

    You shall see the great delusion in your life time. And the Alt Right put people from the Bank into power after saying Cruz’s wife had bank connections.

  18. Big Maq Says:

    “CNN’s behavior is “a direct threat to liberal democracy.” When the press uses its power to expose a citizen for making a mildly funny protest video against CNN, then that is very much a threat.” – Neo

    I don’t think it was just about the video. The video is what brought attention to that commenter on Reddit, but, by my understanding, it was the rest of his type of posts that were awful that raised the question about exposing him.

    My guess is the commenter was underage and it looked way too much like bullying, so they pulled back.

    Smartly so, as CNN is deservedly already under fire for many questionable things.

    Would there be a libel suit if CNN did expose him? Other than that, is there a law against this?

    It raises another question. If CNN can track one down so easily, perhaps any motivated group of people could do the same, and imagine somebody with even more resources?

  19. Dave Says:

    Trump didn’t make the people distrust the media, the media did that to themselves.

    When the media’s description of Trump’s speech doesn’t match what they hear on youtude where we can watch the speech ourselves without the added color commentary provided by the media, we know the media were lying or misinterpreting what Trump was saying.

    While Morning Joe was bashing Trump of acting like a thug side by side they were showing footage of Trump smiling, being friendly with other world leaders while giving his signature manly embrace and handshakes. When the images drastically contrast the media’s commentary, how can anyone still trust them seriously?

  20. neo-neocon Says:

    Somebody:

    Facism is not a right-wing movement, much less a completely right-wing movement.

    Unless you deny the facts in Goldberg’s book, you would have to admit that leftists have at times been fascists and/or allied with fascists.

    I wrote some posts about the leftist nature of some fascists and of Nazism here and here. See also this.

  21. Dave Says:

    So the 4th estate is a lie perpetrated by the media to embolden their authority and legitimatize themselves to create power out of nothing so they can get whoever they like elected with their propaganda operating under the protection of free speech? Got it.

  22. Dave Says:

    Facism is antithetical to everything conservatives believe in. conservatives believe in individual thinking individual liberty while facism adopts group think and giving up individual liberties for the good of society, have you seen conservatives marching on the street in unison like the fascists do? I have never seen that. Nazi was socialism replacing class with race, they both vowed to fight the imperialists taking advantage of their people

  23. Dave Says:

    can anyone give me one example of Conservatives or republicans being racist? explain to me the innerworking of how republicans and conservatives benefits financially by keeping the black people down or whatever, I just want to educate myself on how that work? So White business owners give the better jobs to white people and bypassing better and more qualified black candidates? NFL and NBA should be full of white players then if that is true.

  24. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    Liars cannot tolerate mockery. As exposure is what the liar fears most of all.

    Dave,

    “Socialists believe they are infallible”

    Dogmatists cannot tolerate self-doubt for they have invested their identity in the dogma they embrace.

  25. Dave Says:

    capitalism is all about maximize profits, right? if there is racism in capitalism then racism must be profitable, then just show me, explain to me how racism can be monetized, give me a basic outline of how white people in general benefit from racism. black slaves were cheap labors, how does racism benefit white people financially in the modern time?

  26. neo-neocon Says:

    Somebody:

    Do your research and read my posts on the alt-right and Trump, written during the campaign.

  27. Dave Says:

    I just thought of something.

    If Nazi was socialism replacing class with race

    then what happens when a socialist party like the democrats replacing class (union) with race (identity politics), what do they become? yes, the Nazi, the reverse Nazi, Nazi for the minorities vowed to eradicate the whites and Christians because they are the oppressors

  28. Tatterdemalian Says:

    Dave,

    Everyone already knows that Trump was given the Ellis Island Medal for his commitment to minority rights. It also doesn’t matter, because to the media, “racism” is now defined as “anyone that disagrees with a liberal,” which Trump has done quite egregously.

    The first sign of what is now unfolding was when the media was so perfect at convincing everyone that Trump was a “racist” that they got all the neo-Nazis, KKK members, and other actual racists to turn out in numbers they never had before, to vote for Trump alongside all the supporters smart enough not to fall for the media crying “wolf” yet again.

    It would be justice if, from here on out, being called a “racist misogynist anti-semite” became a basic requirement to be elected President.

  29. Cap'n Rusty Says:

    Great Headine!

  30. Cap'n Rusty Says:

    Dang.

    Great Headline.

  31. Ray Says:

    somebody says but fascism is absolutely in every way a right wing movement,
    You must have missed history class the day the teacher explained that fascism was developed by Benito Mussolini, an Italian socialist and communist. He developed it as the Italian version of communism, communism lite, you might say. Mussolini had a problem with communism, how do you have a proletariat revolution when you don’t have the proletariat? Mussolini decided that no revolution was needed.

  32. Somebody Says:

    Oh T, I think I first heard that argument in 7th grade. And, like a 7th grader, it suggests that your historical knowledge is just enough to reach a trite conclusion.

    If you’re really interested in the early development of the Nazi party–which existed as a fringe, vaguely socialist party before Hitler joined and took over–I recommend digging into the Strasser brothers, who were genuine socialists who advocated industrial nationalization (something that never took place under Hitler), and who were murdered by Hitler in the 1934 purges, decisively ending any left-wing intellectual influence on the Nazis.

    None of that reflects badly on modern American conservatives! There’s this profound defensiveness that I sort of understand but don’t really emphasize with, because it has never occurred to me that you could be morally responsible for the actions of monsters who lived before you were born who adhered to a perverted, extremist ideology with a shared historical lineage to yours.

    But anyway, if you’re really interested it a thorough critique of Goldberg’s polemic-masquerading-as-serious-scholarship, I recommend Dave Neiwert. He explained it all years ago, better than I could:

    http://dneiwert.blogspot.com/2008/01/liberal-fascism-response.html?m=1

  33. Tatterdemalian Says:

    Ray,

    “Somebody” says a lot of things. Only reason to pay attention to them is to let them further erode the meaning of the epithets he/she flings about. “Racist,” “misogynist,” and “Nazi” no longer have any meaning, thanks to arguments like “Somebody’s,” lets see how far shi can ruin the meaning of “fascism” now before zhe realizes what ghe’s doing.

  34. Somebody Says:

    Neoneocon,

    The election is over and Trump is president. Does his relationship with alt-right proto-fascists alter at all your analysis?

  35. John Guilfoyle Says:

    Somebody says
    “….which bothers everyone here more, CNN’s behavior or the fact that there’s a small but noisy community of proto-fascists who are explicitly racist and antisemetic who have openly embraced Donald Trump…”

    Somebody translated:
    “Oh fooey…my guys really are fascist free speech killers! Look a squirrel! And…oh yeah….Nazis are right-wingers!”

    Talk about 7th grade…

  36. Tatterdemalian Says:

    Right on cue, the motherlode!

    http://dneiwert.blogspot.com/2008/01/liberal-fascism-response.html?m=1

    Now, can you explain how Obama’s bank bailouts and corporate subsidies fit the definition of “socialism” instead of Neiwert’s definition of “fascism?” Or maybe how Obama was really a conservqtive all along. Either way, comedy goldmine.

  37. n.n Says:

    Left, right… principles matter.

    Americans are not in principle [class] diversitists, do not construct congruences (e.g. “=”), are not advocates for denying life deemed unworthy (or its progressive form at Planned Parenthood), do not indulge in elective wars, do not rationalize catastrophic anthropogenic immigration reform (e.g. anti-nativism), and are not followers of the Pro-Choice Church doctrines of selective religious, moral, legal, and scientific philosophies, and its peculiar twilight faith (e.g. conflation of logical domains).

  38. n.n Says:

    As for CNN, there is precedent for threatening violence. Recall the video that cast an unflattering focus on Obama’s elective wars targeting nationalist Muslim regimes, which was summarily met with deprivation of life and welfare for the producer of the offending video. Well, that, and the Obama/Merkel-backed coup in Kiev, which progressed to Democrats seeing dead Soviets in their Water Closet.

  39. huxley Says:

    Somebody: Presidents are always going to be embraced by sketchy people at one extreme or another. How is this an important matter?

    If Trump were palling around with David Duke, it would be different, but he’s not.

    However, consider Obama. He knowingly launched his political career from Bill Ayers’ and Bernardine Dohrn’s living room.

    Ayers and Dohrn weren’t just obnoxious people expressing obnoxious opinions somewhere on the internet. Ayers and Dohrn were unrepentant domestic terrorists from the Weather Underground. And they were the top Weatherman leaders.

    That was serious, but in 2008 you were an evil troll channeling Joe McCarthy to mention it.

  40. neo-neocon Says:

    Somebody:

    If anything, I’m less concerned now than I was then. If you read my posts, you’ll see I was extremely concerned about it during the campaign. But since he’s been president, he’s actually been less allied with them rather than more, as compared to during the campaign.

    And see huxley’s reply right above mine.

    In an earlier comment of mine, I already linked to a column by Goldberg written in 2015 on the topic of Nazis being left-wing versus right-wing. Did you read it?

  41. Bill Says:

    As I commented on this thread (http://neoneocon.com/2017/07/03/the-new-york-times-2/#comment-2229645)

    It’s a bit frustrating to take a principled stand in favor of a free press (and I still hold to that) but have CNN do stupid things like go after some dumb citizen who posted some atrocious cr@p on reddit. They acted like the Mob.

    Free speech has to be for me and thee, not just one way. Don’t like it when the White House tries to stifle it, really get irritated when news behemoths do the same thing.

  42. Somebody Says:

    Huxley, that’s a reasonable point–it doesn’t necessarily reflect on Trump to be embraced by a deranged fringe element. But imagine if Obama a) was openly endorsed by a domestic jihadist group and b) then used images from jihadist web fora on a semi-regular basis, and then c) the jihadists openly touted their endorsement by Obama to try to enact their vile agenda? Would that not be a reasonable cause for alarm? Because that’s exactly analogous to Trump pulling memes produced by an explicit anti-Semite who repeatedly advocated murder of minorities. (Lol, but it was just a silly joke, he claimed!)

    CNN’s behavior was awful, and CNN is in no way on my “side.” CNN is a private firm devoted to maximizing the profits of its shareholders; I don’t recognize any more affinity with CNN than I do with, say, Conglomerated Toilet Paper.

    Neoneocon, I’d again recommend Neiwert, whose critique I would do a disservice by trying to replicate in a tiny comment box. But I’d like to discuss the Goebbels quote, about echte sozialismus. It feels like such a gotcha, doesn’t it! But quoting Goebbels devoid of any context suggests either a certain dishonesty on your part–the Nazis were pretty clear that they viewed “true socialism” in a way that no socialist ever articulated before or since–or, more likely, a simple lack of knowledge of history, which is pretty common but should also give you pause before you take a handful of words out of context and use them to define one of history’s most awful ideologies. Hitler, et al, were explicitly interested in preserving the industrial class in charge of the economy as long as the economy served the state; wealthy industrialists simply got wealthier under the Nazis. The Nazis, further, were pretty exploit in their view that workers should in no way be in charge of their industries. In 1930, in a discussion with the Strassers (the socialists who Hitler murdered), Hitler had this to say:

    “The great masses of workmen want nothing else than bread and amusement; they have no understanding of idealism; and we can never count on being able to gain any considerable support among them. What we want is a picked number from the new ruling class, who – unlike you – are not troubled with humanitarian feelings, but who are convinced that they have the right to rule as being a superior race, and who will secure and maintain their rule ruthlessly over the broad masses.”

    None of this requires any soul searching on the part of modern conservatices–Nazism has as much to do with you as Stalin does with me or ISIS does to Gamal al-Din al-Afghani. A shared intellectual history doesn’t incur responsibility. But we should at least be intellectually honest.

  43. T Says:

    Somebody,

    There are two kinds of arguments that regularly occur here among us visitors. The first is debate where we argue to win a point. The second is dialectic where we push and question alternatives and opposition arguments to reach a truth. Your responses represent a third alternative: you ignore proffered evidence (see especially Neo’s posts above) and seem only to be interested in irritating people whatever their stated position on a subject. In other words, you are a troll.

    Your condescension to early knowledge in your post above (i.e., if one learned that as a child it can’t be correct) illustrates lack of argument and lack of thought, and regardless of the names you drop, your thinking skills seem sorely lacking.

    Even as a troll, you’re doing it poorly.

  44. Somebody Says:

    Oh, and anyone who wants to poopoo the idea that Trump’s fans in the alt-right are not racist should spend some time over at Reddits The_Donald or mpcdot or heartiste. (I had never, before reviewing the alt-right, heard terms like “she on” or “niggliest” or “dindu,” and I wish I had remained ignorant, because their racism is so virulently obscene that it makes me feel dirty for even having seen it. And these people LOVE Donald Trump.

    Oh, this is a fun one–for some reason, they love referring for any snappy comment as a “shiv” and basically creamed their pants when Steve Bannon publicly used the phrase in that manner.

  45. Somebody Says:

    Neoneocon,

    I still don’t really see any facts to dispute in Goldberg’s argument. His entire polemic seems premised on the idea that if you classify all pro-liberty positions as “right wing” and all anti-liberty arguments as “left wing,” then of course Nazis were left wing. So yes! If you redefine words in ways that no serious student of history or philosophy does, then sure. He’s got it! But it’s a slight of hand, at best.

  46. T Says:

    “It’s a bit frustrating to take a principled stand in favor of a free press (and I still hold to that) but have CNN do stupid things . . . . They acted like the Mob.
    Free speech has to be for me and thee, not just one way.” [Bill @ 5:10]

    BilI understand your frustration. Just remember virtually all of the media think way too highly of themselves. They, and even the public, look back to the “halcyon days” when good journalism was practiced.

    I suggest that such days never even existed. Those glory days are usually cited as the time fo Edward R. Murrow and Walter Cronkite, but remember during WW II the press was simply supporting the government sanctioned position (sound familiar?) and even Walter Cronkite was later revealed to have been reading biased news reports in favor of his own liberal bent (again, sound familiar?).

    In fact, and I have said this before, the press has never been unbiased and has always promoted a point of view from the time when many newspapers were political party organs. The difference today is that the internet has revealed these biases with instantaneous fact-checking ability by consumers, and the reporters themselves try less to obscure that bias.

  47. parker Says:

    It may turn out that CNN is in deep legal trouble. Cruz, who has a razor sharp legal mind, has stated Georgia state laws and NY’s state laws could be used to prosecute CNN employees.

  48. DNW Says:

    “[NOTE: By the way, here’s the example I located of HanA’s anti-Semitism. It’s the sort of thing you see every day from literally millions of sites all around the internet, and many are a lot worse. Obviously I don’t approve of it, but I think it’s ludicrous that the person creating this was threatened …”

    Failure to condemn vociferously enough is evidence of your own guilt … possibly.

    And: Maybe you should be in trouble for this too, Neo.

    You linked to Caroline Glick.

    Caroline Glick said,

    “American Jews vote overwhelmingly for the increasingly anti-Israel Democratic Party. And while making up a mere 2% of the US population, American Jews contributed 50% of the donations to the Democratic Party in the 2016 elections.”

    That looks like it might be open to being, possibly, maybe, construed as an anti-Semitic, or critical, interpretation.

    Guess that makes you guilty of associating yourself with a possible Anti-Semitic remark, from a possible self-hating Semite … or something.

    It’s all very potentially confusing … except for the part where we know you are therefore irredeemably bad and deserve to have your address and social security number broadcast.

    “Extremism in pursuit of virtue, is no vice” Robespierre … or someone.

  49. J.J. Says:

    Shorter CNN: Nice little life ya got there. Want to keep it? STFU. Mafia tactics.

    And, as parker points out, there are laws against such tactics. Good!

  50. Dave Says:

    Conservatives need to thank Trump for promoting the conservative small government principles to a new generation of people that otherwise wouldn’t have an interest to look up the subject. Trump red pilled many people by exposing them including me to the self relying conservative free market anti-rich envy liberty principles of conservative, trump turned my mind upside down. Only liberal belief I still hold though is universal healthcare because I came from a place with universal healthcare in the form of government funded hospitals and it worked very well in Hong Kong.

  51. J.J. Says:

    It seems to me that what Somebody is arguing is that it’s all right to muzzle the speech of those you disagree with. The alt-right says some despicable things. Are we so fragile as a people that we can’t hear such things and know they are despicable? Alternatively, many of the things being said in the MSM are mean, mendacious, and agenda driven. Do we muzzle them? Nope. The proper reaction is to point out their partisan agenda and get on with life.

    Fascism as defined by Mussolini:
    1.Everything in the state.
    2.Nothing outside the state.
    3.Nothing against the state.

    To conservatives it’s obvious that those who believe in a bigger, more powerful central government as the answer to all problems are pretty much aiming for the Mussolini credo. When boiled down to basics, the main difference between Mussolini and Communism was who owns the means of production. Both tyrannies. Both done for the “good of the people” by those who “knew better.”

    As Goldberg said, one of the most frightening things for a conservative are the words, “I’m from the government and I’m here to help you.”

  52. Ymar Sakar Says:

    Ayers and Dohrn weren’t just obnoxious people expressing obnoxious opinions somewhere on the internet. Ayers and Dohrn were unrepentant domestic terrorists from the Weather Underground. And they were the top Weatherman leaders.

    The Watergate reporters fooled like those you quite well. Since their Deepthroat inside FBI source was the vice director that gave the orders to raid Weatherunderground bases illegally, thus exonerating Ayers of all incriminating evidence against him: as the evidence was obtained illegally.

    Jackpot, Leftist operation success. THey not only preserved Leftist assets, they got rid of Nixon, an obstacle to the Deep State. And all those Americans like you swallowed the Kool Aide without a single hesitation.

    The Main Sewer Media propaganda arm of the Left sold Amis the story that it was two intrepid reporters that exposed corruption in the White House. Hah. Americans buying it without a single thought… priceless. Amis now talking about taking the red pill and not trusting in “fake news” as if they were jacked in on what is really going on, hilarious. All that meth, marijuana, and stims really mellowed out the brave American IQ over the generations.

    As for Nazis… again with the Nazis. It’s like they never died out…

    Their roots are closer to the occult and master race theology from the Mystery Babylon religion. Think Aztec blood magic. They believed that the FLood came from an evil and petty god, that didn’t want humanity to have all this technology from the fallen angels, like Lucifer. Which is why they built the Tower of Babel, to attack that god. WHich is why they have ziggurats and blood sacrifices, a sort of way of giving the gods in heaven a middle finger saying “you want some of us, I dare you to come down here and kill us all with a flood again, we are prepared now”.

    Nazi scientists claimed that the reason they were able to build the V2 and other advanced tech was because they had “help”. The occult wasn’t just their philosophy and justification, it was their entire religious basis for the Final Solution as well as their politics of national socialism. The economics didn’t drive their occult beliefs, it was the other way around. Nazis also apparently believed in a hollow Earth, where the denizens there would give the Nazis the technology to rule over the lesser races, as the Aryans were suppose to come from a divine race. Fallen angels mating with humans, producing the Divine line of kings.

    Poppycock? Let’s see if the bible is a bunch of fantasy bullsh too.
    Wickedness in the World
    6 When human beings began to increase in number on the earth and daughters were born to them, 2 the sons of God saw that the daughters of humans were beautiful, and they married any of them they chose. 3 Then the Lord said, “My Spirit will not contend with[a] humans forever, for they are mortal[b]; their days will be a hundred and twenty years.”

    4 The Nephilim were on the earth in those days—and also afterward—when the sons of God went to the daughters of humans and had children by them. They were the heroes of old, men of renown.

    5 The Lord saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time. 6 The Lord regretted that he had made human beings on the earth, and his heart was deeply troubled. 7 So the Lord said, “I will wipe from the face of the earth the human race I have created—and with them the animals, the birds and the creatures that move along the ground—for I regret that I have made them.” 8 But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.

    Apparently the Nazis knew more of Christian history (get it, his story) than anybody imagined at the time.

  53. Irene Says:

    @Somebody re Reddit the Donald

    You lack humor. TD isn’t racist it’s funny.

    Now about your saying people’s thought re history are trite. Actually your thoughts about socialism are…quaint. And really really naive. If you buy into that Marxist crap instead of understanding the inner workings of socialists and socialism, well that just makes you a gullible word thinker.

    It’s always about power. Your “genuine socialism” has as much credibility as “true communism has never been tried.” There is a reason Hitler went with calling it National Socialism which apparently has eluded you.

  54. Somebody Says:

    J.J.,

    I’m absolutely not suggesting muzzling anyone’s free speech; if there’s any one issue on which I’d consider myself an extremist, it’s on the First Amendment, the single most important sentence in human history.

    On the contrary, I’m not advocating, in any way, censoring the alt-right. I’m trying to suss out the relationship between the conservative movement that voted Trump into office with an explicitly fascist movement that Trump has borrowed from. I’d like to imagine that you folks would be just as terrified as I am by this, but you guys seem pretty sanguine about it, which seems pretty telling about either a) how willing you are to let partisan concerns trump (no pun intended!) an issue that, if it were happening with a Democratic president, would have you turning out in the streets with pitchforks or, less likely, b) how sympathefic you are to the alt-right.

    But J.J., I think your comment gets to one of the roots of this problem: it reveals a pretty severe ignorance of history, which is common but also allows people like Goldberg to write caricatures of history that the public eats up uncritically. To the extent the Nazis or Italian fascists had economic ideologies, it was subordination of the economy to the will of the state, without any redistribution from undeserving capitalists to deserving workers (i.e., the root premise of the left wing socialist and communist movements they spent their years in power murdering). This meant they were content to allow private owners to stay in power and exploit workers, as long as they did so in ways conducive to the goals of the state. (This corporatism is a phenomenon independent of political ideology, like populism, and happens in a variety of systems). If you think Mussolini’s quote sums up everything you need to know about his economic policies, then you probably don’t know that his first finance minister, Alberto de Stefani, cut taxes and rent controls and privatized some state-owned industries. Yes, history is really complicated and a quote taken out of context here and there doesn’t constitute an empiricle case.

    But there’s a deeper issue: this idea that “conservative” and “liberal” are monolithic, eternal beasts with fixed and internally consistent sets of beliefs, when in reality they are constantly evolving and contingent to the times and places where they manifest, with lots of partisan fudging. It’s the sort of thing that lets you claim that conservative means “small government” when in imperial Germany it meant “preserving the power and wealth of the landed, Protestant junker aristocracy. And it’s the sort of thing that lets you hold the idea that conservative means small government while Ronald Reagan taxes the wealthy at far higher rates than Obama or George W. Bush oversaw a massive expansion of the federal government’s role in healthcare, education, and domestic security.

    Goldberg wants his cake and to eat it too. (Haha, he’s fat.) If he wants to classify any system that advocates a role for government as “left wing,” then modern American conservatism is left wing. But what he really wants to do is paint fascism as a modern American liberal’s cross to bear, which means ignoring his own criterion and pretending like conservatives throughout history and right now in America have advocated for government interventions, including pretty severe authoritarianism, in the name of right wing ideals.

  55. Somebody Says:

    Irene,

    So when the redditor discovered his gif had been retweeted by Donald Trump, he began furiously deleting his previous racist posts, including one that identified every CNN employee he could find that was Jewish with a Star of David because, you get it? wait for the punchline…Jews control the media!

    lol kek kek comedy gold!

  56. neo-neocon Says:

    DNW:

    Ah, but I covered all that by Denouncing Myself. Didn’t you notice? 🙂

  57. neo-neocon Says:

    Somebody:

    No one here thinks “conservative” always means small government, or means consistently small government. Since it’s not possible to write a book each time someone writes a comment, there is a certain amount of generalization, and that’s understood to be the case. But “conservation” tends to mean much smaller government generally than “socialism.” And Nazis were on the side of BIG government, not small, and of collectivism (which is more of a leftist trait) rather than individualism.

    They were not classic socialists. But they were more socialist than anything else, if you have to make a case for socialist vs. capitalism as the right sees it. The were more left than right.

    But they were also sui generis, and did not fall easily into ANY category. But you began by saying they were completely on the right, not on the left at all. Which is either an ignorant absurdity or a purposeful distortion.

    And of course, you probably think you know far more than the economist von Mises—who fled the Nazis—did about the economic system of the Nazis. But here’s a summary of what von Mises had to say on the subject:

    The identification of Nazi Germany as a socialist state was one of the many great contributions of Ludwig von Mises.

    When one remembers that the word “Nazi” was an abbreviation for “der Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiters Partei — in English translation: the National Socialist German Workers’ Party — Mises’s identification might not appear all that noteworthy. For what should one expect the economic system of a country ruled by a party with “socialist” in its name to be but socialism?

    Nevertheless, apart from Mises and his readers, practically no one thinks of Nazi Germany as a socialist state. It is far more common to believe that it represented a form of capitalism, which is what the Communists and all other Marxists have claimed.

    The basis of the claim that Nazi Germany was capitalist was the fact that most industries in Nazi Germany appeared to be left in private hands.

    What Mises identified was that private ownership of the means of production existed in name only under the Nazis and that the actual substance of ownership of the means of production resided in the German government. For it was the German government and not the nominal private owners that exercised all of the substantive powers of ownership: it, not the nominal private owners, decided what was to be produced, in what quantity, by what methods, and to whom it was to be distributed, as well as what prices would be charged and what wages would be paid, and what dividends or other income the nominal private owners would be permitted to receive. The position of the alleged private owners, Mises showed, was reduced essentially to that of government pensioners.

    De facto government ownership of the means of production, as Mises termed it, was logically implied by such fundamental collectivist principles embraced by the Nazis as that the common good comes before the private good and the individual exists as a means to the ends of the State. If the individual is a means to the ends of the State, so too, of course, is his property. Just as he is owned by the State, his property is also owned by the State.

    But what specifically established de facto socialism in Nazi Germany was the introduction of price and wage controls in 1936. These were imposed in response to the inflation of the money supply carried out by the regime from the time of its coming to power in early 1933. The Nazi regime inflated the money supply as the means of financing the vast increase in government spending required by its programs of public works, subsidies, and rearmament. The price and wage controls were imposed in response to the rise in prices that began to result from the inflation…

    Much, much more at the link.

  58. Somebody Says:

    Neoneocon,

    I’m not well read on von Mises, but I’ll add him to my reading list. But I don’t think that this argument from authority is necessarily the most convincing; if you’re really engaged on this topic, I strongly recommend the Neiwert series of essays.

    I think the crux of my disagreement with your position in that last post is the notion that statism is the most critical component of socialism’s identity: that anything socialist is statist and anything statist is socialist. There are many examples, historically–imperial Germany being the one I know best, which is why I keep going back to it–of states that are very statist, very authoritarian, but also explicitly conservative in a way that would be really comfortably familiar to most modern conservatives. And it elides critically important components of socialism that were intrinsic to the movement, and not just incidental additions tacked on to the statism. Things like: redistribution of means and modes to workers, or cosmopolitan internationalism, or the role that universities and intellectualism and pacifism played, that were key to socialism of the Nazi’s time. (I say “were” because there really aren’t any explicit “workers parties” anymore, and I think our last election would have looked different if there was one.)

    So when fascism identifies itself as statist, but also as explicitly: against the interests of workers, except in a form of extremely racist economic nationalism, against redistribution, against cosmopolitanism, against intellectualism, against pacifism, it’s really hard to square the two.

    Unless you want to redefine the words “socialist” and “fascist” to mean something different than what they mean, but no one else is. It’s sort of like the modern American left’s newfound insistence on pushing the transgender redefinition of man and woman and gender (yeah, I’m really not on board with that), which is to say: you might all agree on the new meanings of those words in your discourse community, but no one else is using those words to mean what you insist they mean.

    Anyway, not a socialist, but to the extent that we need words to carry specificity if we’re trying to understand the world, it doesn’t mean what you’re saying it means. But if “trends towards statism” means “left wing,” then Pinochet and Bismarck and Salazar and a great number of other conservatives were also “left wing” and that’s just nonsense.

  59. T Says:

    Neo,

    I suggest that you save your breath. “Somebody” (see 4:30 pm) undoubtedly first heard that argument in 7th grade and like a 7th grader it suggests that your historical knowledge is just enough to reach a trite conclusion. (/sarc off)

    As they say, one can’t argue rationally with someone whose argument is not based on reason. This is especially true when they throw in sanctimony and condescension as a substitute for informed thought.

    In short, it’s a waste of time to argue with trolls.

  60. AesopFan Says:

    What an interesting round of, umm, dialectic.

    I’m voting for this thesis:
    Tatterdemalian Says:
    July 5th, 2017 at 4:08 pm

    The first sign of what is now unfolding was when the media was so perfect at convincing everyone that Trump was a “racist” that they got all the neo-Nazis, KKK members, and other actual racists to turn out in numbers they never had before, to vote for Trump alongside all the supporters smart enough not to fall for the media crying “wolf” yet again….
    * * *
    The MSM would have set up McCain or Romney as a colleague of the “alt-right”, and any of the 2016 Bench as well, regardless of their actual character, values, and policies, because that’s what the Left does.

    The “alt-right” may be more enthusiastic supporters of Trump than of any other Republican because the MSM convinced them that he was really, truly one of them, but that is not Trump’s responsibility.

    Somebody is trying to establish that, in fact, Trump IS one of them, but his evidence is meager and depends on confirmation bias as much as anything else; IMO, Trump is so all-over-the-map both in character and policy that it is hard to put ANY label on him other than “The Donald”. Or President The Donald to be more precise.

    I doubt if President Trump did any digging, such as CNN spent time and money on, to suss out the rest of the GIFfer’s posts and then decide that he wanted to be seen as “allied with an alt-righter”: he just saw a funny thing on the internet and lifted it, like most people do.
    (Who sent it to him, BTW? or are we going to accept that the President habitually reads Mr. HASolo and glommed onto it directly?)

    Neo is absolutely correct that the spectacle of a major media player and very wealthy corporation threatening to doxx a private citizen over a joke — which was not itself racist, misogynist, homophobic, or Islamophobic despite its creator’s backfile — is far more destabilizing than a president sharing the joke without fretting over where it came from.

    That just makes him kind of like the people who enjoy Wagner’s music without fretting over his ties to Hitler and the Nazis.

    PS I totally dislike the label “alt-right” unless paired unfailingly with the label “ctrl-left”. The use of the label, in the way the media and Dems use it, immediately establishes the subconscious connection that (this despicable group is alt-right) plus (conservatives are The Right) therefore (this despicable group is conservative). Using the term without either “slang quotes” or “sarc tags” means you lose the battle before even taking the field.

    Add that to the remarkably protean character of Conservative and Liberal, which are both used to mean just about whatever anyone wants them to, while ignoring that most conservatives in the US are classical liberals while the Progressives and the Left are blatantly illiberal in all facets, and you really can’t have any kind of productive debate or dialectic.

    PPS Trying to argue whether Nazis were socialist or conservative, Left or Right, is fruitless: ultimately, they weren’t either one, but they co-opted and used adherents of both ideologies in different ways, and threatened and punished anyone who dissented.

    PPSS Somebody is intent on twisting the points in Jonah Goldberg’s book because they hit the target in precisely the way the Left does not want outed. “Fascist” is another Humpty-Dumpty word — today, it means whatever the user wants it to mean, and is essentially void of productive value in partisan discourse — which is why Goldberg titled his book “Liberal Fascism.
    (And I have read it, thankyouverymuch.)

  61. AesopFan Says:

    Somebody Says:
    July 5th, 2017 at 9:30 pm
    Neoneocon,

    I’m not well read on von Mises, but I’ll add him to my reading list. But I don’t think that this argument from authority is necessarily the most convincing; if you’re really engaged on this topic, I strongly recommend the Neiwert series of essays.
    * * *
    You are twisting the meaning of “argument from authority” to imply that Neo cited von Mises as a rebuttal to your points “because he said so” — as in the frequent answer of parents to a child, where they don’t have to explicate reasons because they are “the authority”.

    What she gave you is “an authority” — meaning someone who knows what he is talking about, through experience and study, and thus gives authoritative evidence for his positions.

    I looked at your link: Neiwert’s list of posts about Goldberg’s book is so long that the combined contents is probably about as lengthy as von Mises’ oevre.
    TL:DR, sorry.

  62. parker Says:

    Somebody,

    I admire you dodge ball abilities. Haven’t see that level of skill since 7th grade back in 1959.

  63. neo-neocon Says:

    Somebody:

    It’s not an argument from authority. I didn’t write “von Mises said it, so it must be so.” I said von Mises is indeed an authority, and offered an excerpt about what he actually said for your perusal. And I offered a link to a much longer discussion of what he said. That way you don’t have to rely on “authority.” You can judge for yourself on the merits of the argument itself. If it was Joe Schmo saying it, it wouldn’t have that extra authority of a guy who was an economist and was there at the time, but the argument might be the same argument for you to evaluate and accept or reject on its merits, just as you are welcome to do with von Mises’ arguments.

  64. parker Says:

    A relavent quote from a liberal sage:

    “The only valid censorship of ideas is the right of people not to listen.” -Tommy Smothers

    But then Tommy, Moynihan, Humphrey, JFK, and Scoop would no longer be welcome in the ‘progressive’ party.

  65. Irene Says:

    @Somebody

    “So when the redditor discovered his gif had been retweeted by Donald Trump, he began furiously deleting his previous racist posts, including one that identified every CNN employee he could find that was Jewish with a Star of David because, you get it? wait for the punchline…Jews control the media!”

    Actually, it wasn’t his gif that POTUS tweeted.

    But that aside, I saw the CNN graphic. Tell me, was it incorrect?

    As to whether Jews control the media, it is indisputable that they do control a hugely disproportionate share of it relative to their population size.

    In case you haven’t notice, many, many Americans are waking up to the fact that the MSM has been lying to them for years and years and years. And they’re very, very unhappy about it. And, yes, it would be perfectly normal to look and see who controls the various MSM outlets and who has been spewing this crap instead of reporting and informing the citizenry.

    So, I find the language at TD, etc. not at all offensive compared to what I hear on CNN, MSNBC, the NYC, WaPo and a host of other media outlets. In other words, what really offends me are not the occasional high-testosterone rants on TD but listening to all those high priests and priestesses of the MSM lying to us day in, day out, ignoring lawlessness and scandals at the highest levels, giving comfort and aid to our enemies, etc.

    But sure, go ahead and be shocked at TD if those are your priorities. And instead go listen to some more months worth of MSM Muh Russia or have even you had enough?

  66. Dave Says:

    Even if every business in nazi germany was in private hands with a government that big and powerful what is the difference when Hitler can point a gun at any business owner and force him to do whatever needed to done? the government had ultimate power, no check and balance, law and order can bent can second according to what the supreme leader need, even if it wasn’t socialism it was at most crony capitalism. Conservatives support police doesn’t mean they support police state, conservatives also believe that when the government turns tyrant police being entity of state instead of federal would join them and the tyrant government. There’s absolutely nothing conservative believe in that align with fascism, conservatives believe the absolute uninfringed rights for every private citizen to bear arm while nazi ban guns

  67. Somebody Says:

    Neoneocon,

    This is going to be an unproductive tangent, but you literally introduced von Mises into the conversation by identifying him as an authority by virtue of experience and sarcastically emphasizing his knowledge of that experience over mine. I mean. That’s literally what you did.

  68. Irene Says:

    @Somebody

    (I”m rushing to Neo’s defense here…..)

    “sarcastically emphasizing his knowledge of that experience over mine”

    Are you serious? You don’t even know who von Mises is. He singlehandedly established the Austrian School of Economics and rebutted Keynes. His colleague, Hayek, is world-reknowned for his famous Great Socialist Debate wherein he eviscerated Oscar Langer. What kind of authority are you that you haven’t heard of him?

  69. neo-neocon Says:

    Somebody:

    No one here is saying “anything socialist is statist and anything statist is socialist.” But statism IS a big part of socialism and leftism. And ANTI-statism is a big part of the right in America today.

    By the way, I have no idea what you’re talking about when you say I quoted Goebbels. I cut and pasted some paragraphs from an article about what von Mises said about Nazis being more socialist than anything else, economically speaking. But I don’t see any Goebbels quotes in there. So whatever “gotcha” you’re talking about is a mystery to me.

    In your comment at 2:48 you wrote “fascism is absolutely in every way a right wing movement.” That is why people are pointing out all the reasons it is not true and why your statement is ridiculous. Fascism has some right-wing and some left-wing elements, and (as I wrote before) Nazism was sui generis. But Nazism’s left-wing elements are very real, and the idea that (as you wrote) it was “absolutely in every way a right-wing movement” is preposterous. That fact that it also was not in absolutely every way a left-wing movement, is quite irrelevant, because n one here is asserting that it was. You were the one making the sweeping categorical statement.

    And by the way, Communists weren’t really friendly to the workers either. Socialism and the left pretends to be friendly to the worker but it was a facade and a sham. The same was true of Nazism and fascism in general, although if possible it was even worse for the workers there. Here’s some background on how Hitler tried to pretend to favor the workers:

    When Hitler came to power in January 1933, he saw trade unions as exercising more power over the workers than he could. Therefore, trade unions were seen as a challenge to be dispensed with. Hitler knew that he needed the workers to be on his side but he could not allow trade unions to exert the potential power they had. Therefore, trade unions were banned in Nazi Germany and the state took over the role of looking after the working class…

    Hitler had to be careful. He had only been in power for a few months and there were many members of the working class he had to deal with. If the working class movement in Germany organised itself, it would have presented the new Chancellor with a lot of major issues that would have to be dealt with. Removing trade union leaders helped this but it did not fully guarantee that the working class would ‘behave’ itself. Hitler had to offer the workers something more. Hitler announced that the German Labour Force, headed by Robert Ley, would replace all trade unions and would look after the working class. The title was chosen carefully. The new organisation was deliberately cloaked in patriotism, as it was now a German entity as was seen in its title. The working class was now a ‘labour force’. The Nazi Party did all that it could to ensure the workers felt that they were better off under the guidance of the Nazi Party via the German Labour Front.

    They had to be brought onto the side of the Nazis as Hitler had major plans for the workers. There were simply too many of them to brutalise into submission, so the workers were offered the ‘Strength Through Joy’ movement (Kraft durch Freude’) which offered them subsidised holidays, cheap theatre trips etc.

    The commonality with the Soviets was state control as well as paying lip service to being on the worker’s side while actually exploiting and controlling them.

  70. Somebody Says:

    Irene,

    Since this is an unproductive tangent, I’d like to thank you for your earlier post about The_Donald. Clarity is important! One of the slimiest aspects of the alt-right is its insistence that everything it does, no matter how vile, is just a joke, just trolling. It generates a sufficiently plausible deniability that a great deal of the conversation about the alt-right is over how seriously to take its racism and not over the actual racism. Hence your “aww shuck” approach to an anti-Semitic trope so old the Nazis were cribbing it when they got started. So, hats off for being clever. But it’s also probably the alt-right’s saving grace, because its emphasis on “shitposting” suggests a profound lack of seriousness, a delusion that online media is the equivalent to real world action.

    But have you met Sean? I think you two would get along. You can kek kek kek over some Shlomo Shekelburg memes and then claim ignorance when someone catches you. (“But isn’t it truuuuuue the Jewwwws are disproportionately in finance hmmm it’s just a joke!”)

  71. Irene Says:

    @Somebody

    Goodness, if TD is alt-right, please don’t wander over to 4chan.

    But thanks for not addressing the substance of I brought up. Why did Hitler call it National Socialism? There must have been a reason. Was the graphic anti-Semitic or depicting an MSM reality?

    And, most importantly of all, has the MSM been spewing almost nothing but left-wing propaganda for the last number of decades and misrepresenting what is of vital national importance to the nation’s citizens in order to protect and advance their left-wing agenda? Up to an including trying to unseat the duly elected president of the United States?

  72. Somebody Says:

    Neoneocon,

    When you say “anti-statism is a big part of the right in America today,” I don’t know how that could possibly be true.

    I’ve tried to make that case here that, despite the heated rhetoric, most American politics take place within a fairly narrow band of all possible politics, that most disagreements are about margins, despite the apocalyptic tone. So if you want to cast, let’s say, the ACA (which started out, of course, Mitt Romney’s idea [and, as an aside within an aside, I think would have made a decent president]) as statism, then the counter argument isnt a right wing “anti-statism,” it’s a “marginally less intrusive statism” in the form of our previous system, which entailed huge amounts of state intrusion into the market. What I mean is: modern American liberalism is only marginally more statist than modern American conservatism. You can point to college campus insanity and I can point to the alt-right, but the thing that actually matters–the actual policy debate–is over margins. If a difference of 4.5% in the top marginal tax rate is the difference between liberty and tyranny, then those words have lost all meaning. The right wing in America gets to think of itself as anti-statist by deluding itself into thinking its favored state interventions don’t really count, because we call ours tax breaks and we call theirs welfare, even if they’re the same exact thing.

    The Goebbels quote about echte Sozialismus (my German is rusty!) was in one of your links; in fact, it was the entirety of the argument in one of your links above. It, of course, elides the context of Goebbels’ remarks, which was explicitly contrasting the Soviets’ claims to be a workers’ state with an internationalist outlook to the Nazi’s claim to socialism as hyper-nationalism, in which workers had claim to benefits through membership in a racialist hierarchy but without any rights to challenge the class structure, which the Nazis carefully preserved. (It should surprise no one that the man who came closest to assasinating Hitler was a count.)

    So: the Nazis used the word “socialism” to mean something different from what everyone else meant. This should not be a surprise. The Nazis appropriated a great many words. “Solution,” for example, meant “genocide.”

    So yes, the Nazis were statist, and so were he Soviets, but to argue that the Nazis belong intellectually on the left is like attributing murders to bread, which all murderers have eaten at some point in their lives. The right has produced totalitarianism, but that doesn’t mean the right IS totalitarian.

    Here’s a bigger issue: the right is very carefully building an intellectual cocoon that blocks off any possibility of self-reflection. The Nazis were really leftists! All bad people are really leftists! All news I don’t like is fake news! If the IC has a consensus assessment that Russia intervened in the election, it’s because they’re a corrupt deep state! If a Muslim rejects extremism, it’s taqiyya! And so on. I suspect, without evidence, that this disconnect might have something to do with the Republicans’ struggle to enact a legislative agenda despite controlling all three branches of government.

    And i expect everyone to angrily reject that, which is…sort of the point.

  73. Somebody Says:

    Irene,

    I’m going to elide a lot of historical complexity here, but:

    Hitler joined a party that already existed, with that name, founded by a man named Anton Drexler. Hitler took over that party and eventually drove out or murdered anyone who advocated actual socialism (like nationalization).

    I don’t know why they kept the name, but I suspect it’s probably because of fascism’s insistence on action for action’s sake, and its hostility to introspection. It would have looked weak to change once they staked that claim. Or maybe they didn’t want to pay to reprint all their letterhead.

  74. T Says:

    So far we have seen “Sombody” respond to serious arguments with sanctimony, condescension, tangential argumentation, denial/disregard of opponents proof sources, mischaracterization of proof sources, sarcasm and extreme self-regard.

    = Troll.

    Why waste time engaging “Somebody” when his/her only intention seems to be not what additional information can be uncovered but how long s/he can continue to provoke futile rebuttal.

    Notice “Somebody” no longer responds to my posts since I have identified his/her raison d’etre.

    As I said above: Troll. And you don’t do it very well, either.

  75. parker Says:

    “unprodutive tangent..” Question: did you pull that out ot your special place where the sun don’t shine, or barry’s, reggies, or hillary’s.?” Fool, you need to suffer. But unfortunately in your world learning from reality, history, human nature are forbidden.

  76. Irene Says:

    @Somebody

    Hitler renamed Drexler’s party, which was the Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (DAP).

    My point was really about all your pereginations re: socialism and fascism. What it is, what it isn’t, etc.

    The names really don’t matter, the power structures do. One exception to that is how the left likes to change the meaning of words to confuse people, e.g., they call themselves liberals taking over the term from the classical liberals or they call all people who aren’t leftists “fascists.” That is a very potent strategy, of course.

    But, much of what you’ve been going on about is just surface, not structural.

  77. Somebody Says:

    T,

    I gave your comment a lot of thought, actually. I think you’re wrong, though I’m sufficiently abrasive that I realize I could be easily mistaken for a troll.

    Re: your first point, Brian made a similar argument for a point-counterpoint style debate, but i don’t think those actually work the way people assume they work. For the most part, none of us are experts in these topics, at best enthusiastic amateurs. I count myself among the latter in this topic. (Though one of my many university degrees in modern European history; did I mention I have many degrees? I’m kind of a big deal. I kid!) so, for the most part, we have limited means to critically evaluate the pieces information we offer as points and counterpoints. They become, essentially, totems, objects we lob at each other in the hopes that some critical weight will convince the other side. But it doesn’t really work that way! There’s an infinite number of weightless totems out there, and it’s a race to lob as many as you can. Even Brian, who has so far been the most engaged and generous of anyone here, reached a point in one thread of “it just is.”

    Re: the latter, the dialectical process, I think that’s what I’ve been doing here. I’ve written probably thousands of words on this site so far, and am probably the only one making my points among a really hostile crowd. So politely and meekly making a point seems about as productive as, I don’t know, there has to be some southern phrase about a greased pig than would fit here. Instead, I make it abrasively, precisely because I want people to get engaged on these topics. But not trolling–i didn’t set out to make anyone mad for the sake of making them mad (except Sean). I like to get people angry because I find angry debate energizing but also because I’m hopeful of some slight chance of shocking someone into considering the merest possibility that there’s something to one of my points.

    But the Goldberg debate, I’ve probably been extra-abrasive because this is one of my clearest “I must be taking crazy pills” moments, watching grown people who should know their own history accept uncritically one of the most shoddy “histories” I’ve ever encountered by someone with no background in the subject and clearly no idea how to perform actual scholarship. I want people to get mad! And then I want them to go read actual history! And I know that most people who do will do so looking for data that corroborates what they already believe–looking for those totems–but maybe someone will read enough that they could critically engage with Goldberg’s “work.”

    So yeah.

  78. Somebody Says:

    Also, come on. You’ve seen how long winded I am. These things don’t write themselves. You’re not such a special snowflake that you should get your underthings all in a wad if I don’t respond to every post instantaneously.

  79. neo-neocon Says:

    T:

    I find “somebody” to be a more interesting troll than most.

    He/she is indefatigable, as trolls often are. I admire his work ethic. But he/she (I’ll call him/her “he” from now on, just to save time and effort) also has some interesting things to say.

    I don’t think he’s 100% trolling, either. I think he’s also curious, and I think he sometimes engages in valid argument amidst the trolling.

  80. Somebody Says:

    Irene,

    So that’s half-right on the DAP. Drexler originally had, and dropped, socialism in the name; the name was changed back after Hitler became a member but after he became party leader, at a time when the party was competing with another hyper-nationalist, anti-Semitic party with “socialism” in the name. I honestly couldn’t tell you what role Hitler played in the name change, but I’ll dig into it!

    I disagree that words aren’t important, if you’re actually interested in understanding things. But they’re less relevant in the day-to-day. So here are two things I’d note:

    Goldberg’s book goes to great lengths to paint modern liberals as the American ideological heirs of fascism, which of course ignores the fact that there ARE actual American fascists, and have been since WWII. Guys like George Lincoln Rockwell and groups like Aryan Nations. It sort of undercuts Goldberg’s entire argument, which is probably why he didn’t talk about them at all. This movement is a fringe; liberals who say “all conservatives are fascists” are being mean jerks, and Goldberg is basically trying to be a mean jerk in response. “I know you are, but what am I?” Is essentially his thesis statement.

    Second, let me reframe what I mean by a “liberal consensus” in American politics. Goldberg tries to make the argument that Hitler’s critiques of liberalism were about classical liberalism, not modern American liberalism, which is true–obviously, because modern American liberalism didn’t exist yet–and completely missing the point, which is that (despite all of your protestations), there is no serious disagreement in this country over the basic tenants of Liberalism as it would have been understood at his time: democracy is good, elections should be free and fair, people should have rights and freedoms, etc. (and before someone leaps in with the blah blah, oh liberals think taxes should be marginally higher so they can’t believe in individual freedom and rights, let me point out that in Hitler’s time, Americans were struggling through an apartheid regime in the south, so Liberalism doesn’t have to be maximally absolute to count as Liberalism). Which is to say: if Hitler were here today, we could bicker all we want over what’s liberal and what’s not, but he would almost certainly view us all as decadent Liberals and seek our collective deaths for our Liberalism. I think we’re sommad at each other because we’re so similar, but I don’t think anyone looking from the outside would be confused.

  81. neo-neocon Says:

    Somebody:

    As I wrote earlier, it would be helpful if you were to always designate the person you’re addressing (at 11:52, for example, it’s not completely clear).

    Still waiting for you to explain where I quoted Goebbels.

  82. Somebody Says:

    Yeah, I’m a dude.

  83. Somebody Says:

    It was right here:

    http://neoneocon.com/2014/12/10/the-nazis-were-socialists/

    You provided it in a list of posts you suggested I read on Nazis qua socialists.

  84. om Says:

    T:

    You’ve nailed Mr/Ms Somebody. Insufferable, long winded troll.

  85. Dave Says:

    i am going to explain a cliched tactic the leftists love to use with and example

    Rolex is a brand of watch, but not every watch is a Rolex
    However, the leftist game they play to confuse unsuspecting people is to make them believe that if every Rolex is a watch, then every watch is also a Rolex

    Going back to fascism, according to the the leftist logic, because nazi has patriotic racism element in it, then every ideology with an element of patriotism in it is nazi.

    Leftists are cockroaches living in the gap of logical ambiguity of ideas hiding behind lazy thinking rhetoric. to defeat them you have to detailedly explain every little tiny detail of every idea to expose people to all the logical fallacy they survive on. That is why fighting leftists are so tedious, you have to give detailed explanation to every trivial little thing in life to beat their lies.

  86. neo-neocon Says:

    Somebody:

    Ah, finally I at least know what you’re attempting to refer to! But I didn’t quote Goebbels out of context. I provided several links to older posts of mine I thought might be relevant to the discussion we’re having now. One of those was a link to a post I written in late 2014 that in turn had linked to an article by Daniel Nannan, the British Conservative Party member who is a delegate to the European Parliament. It was Hannan who was quoting Goebbels, and in that original post of mine, if a reader followed the link I provided, there was context in the Hannan article for what Hannan wrote. So at the time I wrote the post, it led the reader to the context.

    Unfortunately, now (two and a half years later) the Hannan article to which I linked has been removed from its original site, and I don’t think it’s available any longer. But it provided context.

    I did find a short video Hannan made on a similar subject. You can find it here. It seems to have been made later, and since I no longer recall the text of the article I linked in my post, I can’t say how much it resembles the Hannan article I linked.

  87. Dave Says:

    Leftism love twisting reality with careful choices of words to swing a disadvantage into their favor. Asking comey to use the word matter instead of investigation is the prime prime example of it.

  88. neo-neocon Says:

    Dave:

    Many leftists are practiced sophists.

  89. Dave Says:

    The danger of misrepresenting nazi is we can’t correctly identify the truly dangerous elements in nazism, so everything we did to prevent the tragedy of nazism to happen again were all futile and fruitless because we have been safeguarding the wrong things and the real elements that made nazi dangerous were ignored and are still out there growing and waiting to strike again. What if what made nazism dangerous was not the race part of it or at least not the major factor but in fact it’s the socialistic element of it that made nazism dangerous? The fact is if you look at all sadistic regimes in the 20th century, the common denominator were either socialism or Islam, no exception. Mussolini was once a socialist, many structures and tactics of his were carry over from his days as a socialist

  90. Dave Says:

    KKK is also a racist organisation like nazi but then why the damage they could do was so minimal in comparison to nazi, it’s because it was the statism of nazi that allow the racism to be amplified to point of causing massive danger to mankind. When the left are promoting statism they are more likely to morph into something as dangerous as nazi than any conservative fraction can every will.

  91. Harry the Extremist Says:

    Somebody: “Here’s a bigger issue: the right is very carefully building an intellectual cocoon that blocks off any possibility of self-reflection.”

    It’s the right thats doing that is it? So who is it that owns academia from the teachers lounges to the administration? Which side is it that throws a fit if somebody they dont agree with is scheduled to speak on campus? Which side is it that threaten violence if people whom they disagree with should have the temerity to march in the streets? Who is it who reduces generally any argument on almost any subject with a single claim of racism? Who is it really who’s afraid of self-reflection?

    I can tell you from where Im sitting, it isnt coming from the “alt-right”. What ever ideology “National Socialism” arose from is irrelevant to me. I can see who the true fascists are right now.

  92. blert Says:

    Hitlerism was Hitlerism, not fascism… which properly belongs to el Duce.

    Hitlerism was Absolutism… and on a whim.

    He wasn’t even consistent within his own dogma.

    The idea that Hitler had ANY conservative political notions is bizarre.

    &&&

    For the record: the term Nazi pre-dated the Nazi party. It started life as an INSULT within the German army aimed at Roman Catholic Austrian volunteers (rubes) … and is best translated as GOMER in the American military lexicon.

    Since Adolf Hitler WAS raised as a Roman Catholic, was an Austrian, was a RUBE of the first water ( his table manners were astoundingly bad — legendary ) and volunteered into the German army — whereas it would’ve made perfect sense for him to join the Austrian army — it’s easy to see why he was INSTANTLY slammed as a Nazi… and his party as the Nazi party.

    ( Nazi is a corruption of Ignatius, as in Ignatius Loyola, deliberately garbled to indicate a rotten accent, of which Germany had so many. )

    Germans do love contractions and word play, so it’s easy to see why those unaware of the German army’s ‘hip talk insult’ would conflate Nazi with the contraction. It’s notable that no Nazi EVER referred to himself as a Nazi. Instead, he’d simply claim to be a “Party Member.” Since there was only the one party, that summed things up rather quickly.

    ‘Nazi’ started life as an insult, and it stayed that way to the end.

    For a so-called conservative orient politician ( hah! ) how to explain Adolf’s wholesale attack on Christianity ? The SS uniforms were parodies of Catholic vestments — not a coincidence at all. Full SS dress uniforms were WHITE. Hollywood never gets this right. You’ll have to watch Italian war period films to see them.

    Hitler was obsessed with destroying the old order// existing society. The Jews were merely one of MANY religions that Adolf slated for total extermination. As for priorities: Hitler wanted to murder everyone as fast as possible, he actually didn’t prioritize Jews.

    Monday and Tuesday it might be Slavs, Wednesday, Thursday it was Jews, by Friday it’d be Seventh Day Adventists and Gypsies, Saturday it’d be priests and nuns, by Sunday it’d be wits and critics. There was no let up. Most victims didn’t even make it into the ‘system.’

    It was the SOVIETS that ‘nominated’ Hitlerism as Fascism. Stalin’s crew CHOKED on the term National Socialist — held by their previous fellow ally — so they re-branded Hitlerism as Fascism… in memory of the Soviet-Fascist fighting in Spain.

    Franco wasn’t a Fascist, either. He really was a conservative. He was also aligned with Mussolini’s volunteer crew of bona fide Fascists, who were merely a faction, a fraction, of his armies. But this was more than sufficient for the Soviets to re-brand Franco a Fascist, himself. It’s a term Franco never adopted or accepted for himself. He’d always position himself as a nationalist — as against internatonalists — as in Bolsheviks// Soviets, et. al.

    The only folks that proudly adopted the sobriquet Fascists were el Duce’s Italians.

  93. Somebody Says:

    The KKK is a wonderful case study for this discussion, because it represented an explicitly conservative ideology (in the sense of conserving or restoring, where possible, the Confederacy’s structures of racial power and economic exploitation) and an insurrectionist movement. If you want to know what the KKK would have looked like in power, just look st the Confederacy–a slave state that started a war that killed hundreds of thousands of Americans in defense of a system that entailed the systematic torture of millions of people–since most of the first wave of KKK leadership was simply Confederate military, political, and economic elite in new uniforms.

    And there was considerable overlap between the later KKK and American fascists. David Chalmers, in his history the Klan, had this to say:

    Not that the Klan and the Bunsh were antagonists — far from it. During the late thirties there was a prolonged flirtation between the Klan and a growing proliferation of fascist organizations. The names of William Dudley Pelley, Mrs. Leslie Fry, James Edward Smythe, Col. E.N. Sanctuary, Gen. Foerge Van Horn Mosley, and many other “front” leaders turned up with Klan associations. Some had gotten their start in the Klan. X-Ray editor Court Asher was once D.C. Stephenson’s lieutenant in Indiana. White Shirt leaders George W. Christians had been a Klansman. So had George Deatherage, founder of the Knights of the White Camellia, who claimed that the Nazis had copied their anti-Jewish policy and their salute from the Klan…

    On August 18, 1940, several hundred robed Klansmen shared the grounds of the Bund’s Camp Nordlund, near Andover, with a similart contingent of uniformed Bundsmen. Clad in yellow robes, Arthur H. Bell, the Bloomfield lawyer, who had led the New Jersey Klansmen in the 1920s, attacked the singing of “God Bless America,” which he described as a Semitic song fit only for the Bowery taverns and brothels.

  94. Ymar Sakar Says:

    safeguarding the wrong things and the real elements that made nazi dangerous were ignored and are still out there growing and waiting to strike again.

    That’s a good point, actually. They’re also in NASA.

    Some boy’s mask is finally dropping. A shred of real human emotion started showing amidst the Hegelian dialectic of engineered social collapse.

    Also, the reason why I’m not a big optimist on some US President saving you all from alt right, ctrl left, or Lucifer’s ctrl alt delete is because of things like geoengineering. Massive planetary scale climate change, designed to “counter anthropomorphic” weather change, but in fact is probably causing total collapses in eco systems, famine food cycles, and weather systems.

    They are literally pushing ctrl alt del on your planet, and you can do nothing about it, because the chem trails are already over your heads. The weather and the planet itself, is being irretrievably transformed. It is not just your nation they wrecked. Humanity won’t have a planet that they can live on, in a few decades, all because of the Leftist alliance. Lucifer is a spirit, he doesn’t actually need air, you know. Last time I checked, humans still do. So they are going to “cull” the weaklings out and reduce the population by a few billion.

    It is the Hegelian Dialectic. Thesis and Anti Thesis forms hyper transcension and the super principle.

    The Leftist alliance produces the Alt Right counter. The Alt Right produces the Trum which produces the Ctrl Left counter. Global Warming by humans requires global climate change by humans. Global climate change by humans creates a wrecked planet, which creates the need for the solutions from Global Warming by humans.

    They’re just going to mash it all together in some super UN government and religion. Everything for the state, nothing outside the state. Mystery Babylon was an old religion which required the sacrifices of the firstborn of every clan and family. That was pretty popular. It will be again.

  95. AesopFan Says:

    Going back to the original topic, which was the gif tweeted by President Trump, several good analyses (much too dignified a term in this context) have surfaced in forums such as American Greatness and Power Line, indicating that even many on the Left think CNN jumped the shark on this one.

    https://amgreatness.com/2017/07/05/cnns-maoism-wakeup-call-leftist-intolerance/
    “To give credit where it’s due, the reaction to this utterly inexcusable behavior has been almost entirely negative from all sides of the aisle. On the Left, Vox’s German Lopez tweeted, “I can’t emphasize how bad this is on CNN’s part. This is basically ‘don’t post stuff we don’t like or we’ll dox you.’ Extremely unethical.”

    For along with everything else, we must admit that HanA**holeSolo was not targeted by CNN because he had posted racist or anti-Semitic things (though he may well have done). He was targeted because he had the gall to create a meme mocking CNN that was so funny that the president of the United States may have adopted it. For his trouble, he was blackmailed ”

    https://amgreatness.com/2017/07/05/trump-provokes-cnns-self-immolation-america-relieved/

    “The media keep telling us how thin-skinned and volatile Donald Trump is….

    The media wheeled out Kathy Griffin, ..They published fantastical stories about alleged connections between Trump surrogates and “the Russians,” ..

    When the avid Bernie Sanders supporter James Hodgkinson goes on a hunting expedition against Republican congressmen, shooting several, the media blame Republicans for creating a “climate of hate.” …
    Then there were the media darlings and prostheses: Madonna, for example—… And let’s not forget the thousands of females who dressed up as female genitalia and paraded about the Washington Mall to complain about Donald Trump’s vulgarity.

    So you can see why these high-minded guardians of public decorum were shocked, shocked when Donald Trump tweeted an altered wrestling video that depicted him pummeling a figure who sported a CNN-logo pasted over his face.

    When it comes to “encouraging violence,” what’s more effective: the round-the-clock assassination porn dispensed by the Left against Trump or a comic altered video of a wrestling prank?

    Those who have observed that Trump’s acrimonious behavior towards the press is not “normal” are quite right. …
    But whatever happened to normality? The Left has been on a campaign to ruin normality since the 1960s. Their dearest wish was to destroy and hollow out and ridicule the bourgeois virtues of good manners and decorum… “

  96. AesopFan Says:

    PowerLine points out that defamation masquerading as News from CNN is not new:

    http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2017/07/cnn-has-been-faking-the-news-for-a-while.php

    “I was surprised, earlier today, to see that people were visiting a post I did in 2009 titled Rush Is Out. A little investigation showed that most of the traffic was coming from a tweet by Dan Riehl. Riehl linked to my post and to a tweet by Andrew Breitbart that simply said “CNN is evil,” with a link to the Power Line post. So here is my 2009 post, in its entirety.”
    Which I won’t copy in its entirety, just the punch lines.
    “Anyone who has ever listened to Limbaugh would immediately recognize this as a hoax; in fact, it was made up out of whole cloth by a little-known left-wing blogger. But it was reported as fact by news outlets that didn’t bother to verify their facts. CNN was especially blameworthy in this regard; it vouched for the blogger-fabrication:…A final observation, perhaps too obvious to require saying: It’s no coincidence that Democratic Party outlets like CNN had to dredge up fake quotes to make their case. Nothing Rush actually said would do the trick, even though he’s been on the radio three hours a day, five days a week, for more than twenty years. That really tells you all you need to know.
    ONE LAST UPDATE: It is worth noting, as a kind of macabre footnote, that CNN found it worthwhile to “fact check” Saturday Night Live when that program had the temerity to ridicule CNN’s President, The One. Maybe CNN could become a respected news organization if it tried to fact check news stories as well as comedy skits, starting with–is this too much to ask?–its own broadcasts.”

    The point being that CNN has a remarkably low thresh-hold for taking the kind of hits they routinely give, although in this case they didn’t have to make up the blackmailed blogger’s words as they did with Rush.

  97. Kyndyll G Says:

    I would not presume to speak for all of the people on this forum, much less millions of people who, for any of a number of reasons, tend to hold the same opinions I have on some subjects or vote for some of the same candidates I choose to vote for. But I will define my political model, which is shared to some extent by many people you would call conservatives.

    Let’s start by saying that American conservatives are conservative because they want to preserve the foundational beliefs and ideals of the United States. What would those be? What makes the United States different from the country it broke away from, or the European countries from which a great majority of its early population immigrated? Our nation was founded by people who put their lives and assets on the line to separate us from the tyranny of a government without representation, and our founding documents literally outline an idealization of individual rights with specifically enumerated and limited rights of the central government. Ours was designed as a nation of individuals, for whom our government works. Understand that: the government was written to be subservient to the American people, not the other way around.

    In “the old country,” with centuries – approaching millennia – of toiling under monarchs and assorted tyrants, the political axis is based on a starting assumption of government control that our founders would have considered unappetizing. The royalty may now be gone or remain just as dusty figureheads, but a cultural mindset accustomed to living under boots measures its world by the tread pattern on the bottom of a boot. It suits those who live under boots to sort statist tyranny by flavors: with the extremes of “right” being characterized by tyrannies of nationalism and religion, and extreme “left” being tyrannies of communism.

    The American political spectrum is different. We lack a history or desire for tyranny. Our true political axis is government vs. governed, with the extremes defined as complete government control on one end and complete lack of government control on the other end. By definition, American conservatives place themselves somewhere on the half that includes less government control, since that was the founding principle of our nation that we are seeking to conserve.

    One of the online debate trends I’ve noticed in recent years is a general creeping into political debate on US-based forums, between largely US-based commentators, of the UK/Euro flavor-of-tyranny political spectrum. I expect this is due to numerous factors, including the globalizing effect of the Internet and the Europhilism that has existed within a certain subset of the US population since before the US was a nation. Part of it, however, is being forced onto conversation by the “Progressive” left, since it suits their purposes to stain their political enemies by conflation of UK/Euro “right-wing” (evil nationalists, personified by Hitler) with US conservatives, aka the “right”, who also tend to be American nationalists. Thus, anyone who is not in favor of every single part of the increasingly wacked-out, big-government ideology of the “Progressive” left is by definition, on the side of Hitler.

    Like so many “Progressive” left ideas, it’s idiotic and absurd, but because it’s part of an incessant drumbeat it’s a lie that becomes truth with pounding repetition; and because conservatives are bullied into complete silence by violent nutjobs that froth at the mouth with their desire to harm physically, financially and in every other way anyone who harbors an unacceptable thought, there’s not much to counter it. But here is what makes it patently stupid to conflate conservatives with Nazis: Nazi Germany represents a literal cliche of unbridled government control and no individual rights. It is the opposite of what American conservatives want or idealize.

    We give exactly zero f%cks if Hitler was a nationalist tyrant, a communist tyrant, a religious tyrant, or a highly inbred, syphilitic tyrant king. The result was a situation featuring murderous and crushing government control over a terrified citizenry lacking rights to live or speak freely, and in some cases, the basic right to exist at all. Anyone who tries to pin that on people who believe in limited power of government and preservation of individual rights, for all citizens, is a drooling moron. We don’t give tyrants the respect of placing them on different points of a political spectrum shared by normal people. We put them all in a box labeled “Evil F’ing Tyrant A’holes” where they can all rot in hell together, and then we put that box on the far end of a political axis that only the “Progressive” left wants to drag our country closer to: powerful central government stifling the life out of its populace.

  98. AesopFan Says:

    I really love it when PowerLine agrees with me.

    AesopFan Says:
    July 5th, 2017 at 9:40 pm
    I doubt if President Trump did any digging, such as CNN spent time and money on, to suss out the rest of the GIFfer’s posts and then decide that he wanted to be seen as “allied with an alt-righter”: he just saw a funny thing on the internet and lifted it, like most people do.
    (Who sent it to him, BTW? or are we going to accept that the President habitually reads Mr. HASolo and glommed onto it directly?)
    * * *
    http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2017/07/did-cnn-out-the-wrong-ahole.php

    “According to BuzzFeed’s analysis, the CNN–WWE GIF that President Donald Trump tweeted last week was not the same as the one created by HanA**holeSolo.

    However, the GIF used by Mr. H.A. Solo is quite similar to the one tweeted by the president. Given the similarity, and Mr. Solo’s abject apology, he’s not the wrong guy by much….BuzzFeed says its revelation that the GIF came to Team Trump from another source is a big deal because it bears on “where Trump and members of his inner circle are getting their memes.” I don’t think this matters. What matters is which memes they embrace.”

    Here I agree with BuzzFeed and not PowerLine (Mirengoff).
    If President Trump himself had found the gif on the admittedly racist etc etc etc sub-reddit, then it would show that he approves of the poster and his cohort, because that would be an habitual “echo chamber of choice” for him.
    If, as it appears, someone else found the gif and massaged it, then insinuated it into a much more “respectable” source — or sent it to President Trump directly — then there is absolutely NO connection between Trump and the original creator, and no implied approval of the associated racist etc etc statements as Somebody alleges: it’s an accident of circumstance.

    The gif itself (“memes they embrace”) is funny to anyone except Mirengoff, CNN, and the Hypocritical Left, and is no more an expression of hate or a condoning of violence than the mayhem of a Saturday morning cartoon — whoever sent it along knew it would appeal to the President because it featured Trump himself in an actual event that was, at the time, perceived as a PR stunt, not a call to violence.
    TV wrestling, as others have pointed out, is acting; kind of like, umm, Shakespeare in the Park — and that was perfectly OK with the Left even though the Trump-Caesar ended up dead.
    You can’t preach symbolism for your side and literalism for the other side all the time — well, you can, but you deserve to be called out for double-standards.

    CNN is a being full-throttle dork here.

  99. AesopFan Says:

    Getting down to the fundamentals, and basically agreeing with and expanding on Neo’s post:

    http://libertyunyielding.com/2017/07/05/doxxing-war-erupts-cnn-blackmails-creator-trumps-cnn-slam-gif-apparently-racist-anti-semite/

    “..CNN pursued the Reddit user, …The report has justifiably prompted a massive social media backlash, because it outlines with startling clarity that CNN is basically blackmailing the individual in question….

    So CNN is using its media power to intimidate a person who posted a bunch of offensive BS online … it appears that the only real individual target was CNN, whose logo was used in the Trump body-slam GIF. CNN couldn’t even get in the front door of a civil court with a complaint about that.

    In the meantime, tweeps are pointing out – fairly, as it happens – that CNN hasn’t been nearly as dogged and diligent about unearthing actual news as it was about tracking down HanA**holeSolo.

    Just a few points about all this. One, as Joel B. Pollak says at Breitbart (link above), the video in question need not have been retrieved for Trump from Reddit, and the White House says it wasn’t.

    CNN, meanwhile, has been exposed as petty, vengeful, and nakedly extortionate in its approach to the unfortunate HanA**holeSolo. Some people may be satisfied to think the proper norms of social discourse are being enforced on such terms. I emphatically am not.

    Inevitably, the power to intimidate people gets used for the wrong things.
    Listen well to what I’m going to say here. The threat posed by these hatreds (by HAS), regardless of which radical fringe they come from, is meaningful when it is organized, and accommodated or even used by the political authorities. There is zero evidence of American political authorities anywhere accommodating or making use of racist, anti-Semitic, or anti-Muslim hatred of the kind expressed by HanA**holeSolo.

    This wasn’t happening before Trump entered office, and it isn’t happening now. There is no evidence whatsoever that it is going to happen.

    This is in contrast, it must be noted, to the evidence that local authorities in some areas have accommodated organized violence and threatening speech by groups like Antifa and BLM-linked groups. ”

    And going to the crucial lesson:
    “I don’t agree with everything Trump does, of course, and I always wish he were a more expressive, systematic thinker. But he’s right on other key things, like the urgent need to roll back economy-strangling regulations, the need to free our schools from the constraints of a hyper-politicized, increasingly radical education establishment, and the need to rebuild the military. These are things the mainstream, big-government left has been ascendant and wrong on for decades. They’re things too many Republicans have been weak-kneed and complicit on.

    Trump also gets that the “mainstream media” are not what the public has reflexively been giving them credit for, and that they haven’t been for some time. The MSM are so far from being outlets of impartial integrity, it’s laughable to even put all those words together in one sentence. The overtly partisan new media, on both the left and the right, are more honest actors in that regard.

    Trump’s understanding about this may come off to some observers as a sort of feral instinct. But the point is that he has it, and he is not playing along with the charade of magisterial MSM objectivity. That matters. …
    But what I cannot do, more than anything else, is pretend that acting like a nicer person than Trump makes someone right on the issues, when it so obviously doesn’t.

    The more polished personas of previous presidents have blinded us for a long time to how far we have strayed into a corrupt, dangerous idea of government and its conventions….
    I wouldn’t have chosen for this moment to involve Twitter and doxxing wars, or fake-wrestling videos and social-media memes. If I had my druthers, it would be all classical music and debates on PBS between Bill Buckley and Pat Moynihan. But we don’t live in that world today, and the most important thing of all is not to sell our lives and liberty out in the effort to pretend we do.”

  100. Irene Says:

    @Kyndyll G

    Lovely presentation and profound. You really nailed it.

    I was not going to come back to this thread, but I’m certainly glad I did after reading your post.

  101. AesopFan Says:

    From a site I haven’t seen referenced here before:
    http://www.whitehousedossier.com/2017/07/03/method-trump/

    “…Trump may just be destroying CNN, as he intends. Or rather, helping them destroy themselves.

    “The fake media tried to stop us from going to the White House, but I’m president and they’re not,” Trump said Saturday.

    “The fact is the press destroyed themselves because they went too far. Instead of being subtle and smart, they used the hatchet and the people saw it right from the beginning.”

    That’s right. The press used to be subtle about its liberalism. Or at least more subtle. Now they’re over the top. And they’ve raised doubts, probably even among independents, about whether they can be trusted. Meanwhile, Trump has inspired his band of followers to fight on, sparking an energy he may need if Republicans in Congress fail to enact the agenda they’ve been promising for nearly a decade.

    Trump recognizes subtlety because he practices it. And one way he does it is by appearing to be unsubtle.”

  102. AesopFan Says:

    Is the Atlantic really this clueless about how the public perceives the press today?

    https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2017/07/the-presss-ineffective-defense/532596/

    “In order to defend itself, the media will have to make the case that Trump’s attacks on the press are bad for the public. The problem with the president’s behavior isn’t that he’s mean to the press, since anyone who signed up for a journalism job in order to be chummy with elected officials chose the wrong career. The problem is that his attacks on the press threaten to undermine public confidence in its work, and its ability to gather and convey information on an independent basis. In a democracy, the press is the means by which ordinary citizens gain the information necessary to make informed decisions and to judge their elected representatives. The president has repeatedly and flagrantly attempted to mislead the American public; those deceptions are well-chronicled, because there is a free press to document them. There’s no way to temper free speech for the media without tempering free speech for the rest of the population.”

    Nice statement of the ideal of a free press; too bad we all know they aren’t living up to it.
    The “free press” itself repeatedly misleads the American public, documents things that never occurred, and retaliates against nobodies – who are, BTW, also members of the public.

    The last sentence quoted is correct, but their solution is to muzzle the population and leave their own jaws unbound. (Remember that the MSM does not consider bloggers to be members of the media.)

  103. Tatterdemalian Says:

    From AesopFan’s Atlantic article:

    “The press may never succeed in eliciting popular sympathy—instead, it needs to convince members of the public that the president’s rhetoric will hurt them, too.”

    Oh please do this. I have a million journalist-sponsored videos of Sarah Palin getting beaten up that will be perfect to take all that convincing of the public you’re doing, and show that the press’s rhetoric has hurt them more.

  104. Sean Says:

    The president has repeatedly and flagrantly attempted to mislead the American public; those deceptions are well-chronicled, because there is a free press to document them. There’s no way to temper free speech for the media without tempering free speech for the rest of the population.”

    What exactly do they think he’s doing to undermine free speech? Is he calling the MSM hate speech and saying it should be banned or something?

  105. Sean Says:

    In case this hasn’t already been posted, CNN’s ratings are in free fall:

    http://www.dailywire.com/news/18181/just-how-badly-cnn-collapsing-look-these-numbers-james-barrett#

  106. Dave Says:

    be carefully those liberal fake journalists may fabricate some fake crimes by hiring some fake hit men to fakely put on a half baked fake attempt of assassination on themselves to frame the president for instigating violence against them. Just like the nazi the liberals love scheming those type of fake hate crimes to smear political opponents

  107. DNW Says:

    neo-neocon Says:
    July 5th, 2017 at 8:47 pm

    DNW:

    Ah, but I covered all that by Denouncing Myself. Didn’t you notice? “

    Let’s make sure we get that on film during the next self-criticism meeting.

  108. Ymar Sakar Says:

    The idea that a bunch of aristocratic inter marrying journalists are the only ones allowed to have a free press to publish what they wish… implicitly means the rest of you are just slave peons that can shut up and sit down.

    Which is what they did, with the support of all those here talking about a “free press”, of course. That’s why the very concept of a 4th estate or a free press of aristos, is treasonous. It’s not American. It’s not Constitution. It makes perfect sense if you were indoctrinated in public education and journalism schools though. Score another one for Gramsci and public indoctrination.

    We lack a history or desire for tyranny.

    Plenty of tyrannical elements in the Demoncrat slave lords of 1830s. The US story just prefers to white wash certain parts of history, to appeal to nationalism or Leftist re education programs. Also plenty of Tyrants in Northern Democrat states, same politics different religion and culture. It got to the point where they thought killing Lincoln was the act of killing a tyrant, refusing to recognize that the God of Abraham and Isaac have already condemned them as being the tyrants that deserved a civil war to wipe out.

    The Left has been on a campaign to ruin normality since the 1960s.

    No, 1930s. And even before, due to Sanger and Demoncrat slave lords. FDR and WIlson were more involved than you realize.

  109. AesopFan Says:

    A few random thoughts since last night:
    (1) CNN is promulgating its media version of The Alien and Sedition Acts, in the Bizarro Universe where it is perfectly okay to leak top-secret national security info (because, Trump!) but not-okay to hit back at the purveyors of said secrets.
    (2) A catchy bon mot that I forgot to include in the quote from https://amgreatness.com/2017/07/05/trump-provokes-cnns-self-immolation-america-relieved/
    “In short, across the wide spectrum of issues that command public attention, Trump is there patiently pursuing his agenda, keeping the campaign promises he made. He may tweet like Milo, but he governs more like Eisenhower. The dogs are barking, but assuredly the caravan is moving on.”
    (PS Eisenhower broke the back of the anti-Civil-Rights South and yet also controlled illegal immigration.)
    (3) Somebody’s rhetorical tactics are very familiar to LDS students of anti-Mormon literature and the groups that comprise the cottage industry publishing it. Some of his dodges have been called out above, but the entire run of his comments here and on other posts is very typical.
    It’s a set of tools that can be deployed to undermine any belief-system, but only works when exercised among civilized and tolerant people willing to engage with the “concerned sceptic” by admitting the “good points” mixed in among the shifting sands of allusion, accusation, and adulteration of the debaters’ actual positions, while the sceptic concentrates on a hand-waving dismissal of any evidence refuting his assertions — roll back through the discussion and you can see a master troll in action, along with some equally masterful push-back.

  110. Tatterdemalian Says:

    “roll back through the discussion and you can see a master troll in action”

    Nah, too wordy. A master troll would do it in 140 characters or less.

  111. Big Maq Says:

    “But then Tommy, Moynihan, Humphrey, JFK, and Scoop would no longer be welcome in the ‘progressive’ party.” – parker

    May be true, as well, it too seems that Reagan would probably be considered a “cuckservative” by today’s standards – with even that term is in frequent enough usage, itself, says a lot of where we are.

  112. DNW Says:

    “Somebody Says:
    July 6th, 2017 at 1:35 am

    The KKK is a wonderful case study for this discussion, because it represented an explicitly conservative ideology (in the sense of conserving or restoring, where possible, the Confederacy’s structures of racial power and economic exploitation) and an insurrectionist movement. If you want to know what the KKK would have looked like in power, just look st the Confederacy–a slave state that started a war that killed hundreds of thousands of Americans in defense of a system that entailed the systematic torture of millions of people–since most of the first wave of KKK leadership was simply Confederate military, political, and economic elite in new uniforms.”

    Nice technique! LOL

  113. Somebody Says:

    Kyndyll G,

    A few thoughts.

    “The royalty may now be gone or remain just as dusty figureheads, but a cultural mindset accustomed to living under boots measures its world by the tread pattern on the bottom of a boot.”

    This seems like a fairly pervasive notion in conservative discourse, and it seems like the sort of thing a person would conclude if they knew roughly two things about Europe. European history is replete with near-constant revolution and struggle against tyranny. Though often tragically unsuccessful, it seems pretty absurd to argue that there’s a tradition of obedience to authority on a continent that was repeatedly swept by revolutionary movements of nearly every stripe. If Europeans seem content with their current systems despite their failings, I’d suggest considering they do so because they spent literally centuries murdering each other on an unimaginable scale until they figured out something that worked just enough so they’d stop murdering each other so much. (Suggest reading up on the Revolutions of 1848 if you’re interested in Europe’s history of revolutionary fervor and the 30 Years War if you’re interested in the sort of history the Europeans are trying to avoid, when 30-40% of Germany’s population died.)

    “But here is what makes it patently stupid to conflate conservatives with Nazis…”

    I agree that this is stupid! But it’s not at all what I’ve argued. Claiming that fascism is intellectually rooted in the right is NOT conflating conservatives with Nazis. I have repeatedly said this. I think this misconception is at the root of much of the rancor in this discussion, but it’s a misdirection. Nazism represents an extremist, maximalist perversion of right wing principles or goals (and I mean “right wing” in the sense of a sweep of history, and not the contingent principles of modern American conservatives). The right is generally nationalist, the left is generally internationalist–and fascism takes nationalism to an extreme of murderous, racialist madness. The right is generally concerned with preserving what works, while the left is generally concerned with overturning what doesn’t work; fascism takes this conservation of the past to an absurd extreme of palingenesis. The right is generally interested in respecting traditional, worthy authority vested by a community; fascism takes this to an extreme worship of violent authority embodied in a single person, vested by a community produced by racialist murder. Do you see what I’m getting at? An extreme perversion of something you hold dear doesn’t besmirch you or the thing you hold dear. You’re not responsible for it. A good idea can be perverted, but it doesn’t stop being a good idea just because a monster perverted it.

    “…Nazi Germany represents a literal cliche of unbridled government control and no individual rights. It is the opposite of what American conservatives want or idealize.”

    It’s funny, because that’s also the opposite of what I want or idealize! It’s almost as if our beliefs are vastly closer to each other than either of our beliefs are to the extreme outliers on either end of the political spectrum.

    “We give exactly zero f%cks if Hitler was a nationalist tyrant…”

    Actually, it seems as if many people here give many fucks! Dave, for example, seems to think I’m a cockroach for suggesting it (ironically, a slur popular among the Nazis and Tutsi genocidaires in Rwanda).

  114. neo-neocon Says:

    Somebody:

    Oh, please. You did NOT merely “claim that fascism is intellectually rooted in the right.” Even if you had said only that, that would be wrong. It is not rooted in the right, intellectually or otherwise, as many people here have made clear—unless you define “the right” in your own especially idiosyncratic way.

    But again: this was not the initial claim you made that got everyone here all riled up. What you wrote—and I quote you exactly here—was this (at 2:48 on July 5):

    …fascism is absolutely in every way a right wing movement…

    That’s not just a stupid comment, it’s an absurd one.

  115. Somebody Says:

    Neoneocon,

    I absolutely stand by the statement, but it seems so innocuous and factually obvious to me–as innocuous and factually obvious as saying “communism is a left wing movement”–that I strongly suspect that we’re talking past each other here.

    When you hear “fascism is a right wing movement,” what do you think I’m trying to say? I’ve spent at least hundreds of words trying to articulate a (mainstream) idea (backed by decades of scholarship on fascism) but I’m still running into this brick wall, so I invite you to explain what you think I mean when I say that, so we can figure out what the disconnect is.

  116. neo-neocon Says:

    Somebody:

    You stand by the statement? Innocuous?

    Bizarre.

    Waste of time at this point to talk to you, I’m afraid.

    By the way, your statement was FAR more absolute than “Communism is a left-wing movement” would be, and FAR more shaky in its foundations.

  117. neo-neocon Says:

    Somebody:

    Look what you did there, by the way—you paraphrased what you wrote as “fascism is a right-wing movement.” That’s not the case; fascism contains both right and left-wing elements, and people have debated the left-right origins of fascism ever since fascism has existed.

    But it’s also not what you wrote. You wrote, “fascism is absolutely in every way a right wing movement.”

    I think you must be pretending to not see the difference.

  118. Somebody Says:

    I mean, I get blowing me off if you’re disinterested, but if you’re blowing me off because you’re misunderstanding something I’ve said, when I’ve repeatedly insisted that fascism as a right wing movement does not reflect on you or any of your beliefs, that’s just pointlessly obtuse. But you do you!

  119. neo-neocon Says:

    Somebody:

    You are an interesting guy, really quite indefatigable. But you are disingenuous and sophistic in your arguments. I and others here have explained quite fully why it is a waste of time to argue with you, and I suggest you take a look also at the comment of mine right above this, at 6:14 PM.

  120. Somebody Says:

    Aight. One last comment: if your disagreement is over as abstract and academic an issue of whether fascism contains just right wing or left-and-right wing elements, then your apparently emotional reaction suggests you’re taking my remarks personally in some way, as a personal accusation of affinity or responsibility with fascism, an idea I have repeatedly and explicitly rejected. And this is what I mean by talking past each other, because we’re both in a position of having to either believe a) we’re obtusely pretending the other person is taking an absurd position or b) we’re not accurately conveying some concept.

    So cheers!

  121. Somebody Says:

    PS (last one, I promise): to the extent that it matters, I have literally not once been disingenuous. If you have perceived me to be disingenuous or engaged in sophistry, I swear that you are completely mistaken, and whatever you think you’re perceiving is a mistake on your part. Which is closely related to my entire thesis with this project: American political discourse can only possibly be as nasty as it is if we’re simply failing to understand that we’re often talking about the same thing in the same way with different words.

    Last one, I swear.

  122. neo-neocon Says:

    Somebody:

    At 6:14 I gave an example of your disingenuousness, a very simple one that’s very easy to understand. If you don’t see what I’m talking about there, I can’t explain it to you any further.

  123. Somebody Says:

    Yup. Got it. Again, the statement is innocuous and factually correct. If you want to redefine “left wing” to exclude critical defining components like “redistribution of control over means and modes of production to workers as an explicit class,” that’s your prerogative, but you should be clear that you’re redefining the term into uselessness, when there are perfectly useful terms–statist, authoritarian, totalitarian–that describe phenomena that manifest on both ends of the political spectrum.

    This is the root of Goldberg’s problem–beyond his absurdly shoddy scholarship–that he sought to redefine “fascism” in a sufficiently vague concept that it could just as easily apply to left or right wing totalitarianism. Scholars have spent decades elucidating the defining characteristics of fascism–its obsession with restoring an imaginary past, its obsession with violent, masculine authority in a single person, its anti-intellectualism, its extreme nationalism and racialism, its obsession with national crisis, and so on–all of which represent right wing precepts carried to a murderous, perverted extreme. None of these, of course, belong intellectually on the left–which has its own set of precepts which, if carried to perverse extremes, gives us totalitarian monstrosities like communism.

    If it helps to understand, I don’t consider myself “on the left” except insofar as we colloquially put modern American liberals on the left, when I don’t adhere to most of the left’s traditional precepts (like redistributing control over means and modes to workers as a class), and modern American conservatives are “on the right” only insofar as we colloquially put you there. You have about as much in common with the classical right–guys like Bismarck–as I do. Unless you secretly long for the days of Protestant Prussian monarchy.

    Just as there’s no classically right wing party in America–devoted to preserving or restoring monarchical and clerics governance, there’s no classically left wing party that is explicitly a workers’ party focused on redistribution of means and modes. And it’s important to remember the intellectual context in Europe during the rise of fascism was exactly that context–a political spectrum that is alien to modern american politics. Mussolini’s embracing of both the Italian king and the pope as tools of his statist rule were examples of embracing the right wing–the classical right wing that doesn’t exist any more–and not anything that could honestly be construed as left wing.

    Right? One of the biggest divides between left and right during the rise of fascism was over clericalism vs anti-clericalism. It’s utterly irrelevant to modern American politics. You can’t separate fascism’s intellectual history from its historical context, which looked very different from ours.

    And look, both modern American liberalism and conservatism bear far more resemblance to each other than they do to either socialism or fascism. Despite hownvociferously most of you will object, both liberals and conservatives descend from the same classically liberal lineage. We’re yelling at each other about the top marginal tax rate, not whether workers should own the means of production or if we should restore the rights of King George.

  124. DNW Says:

    So like, what’s the latest on antifa social justice warrior Eric Clanton?

  125. Somebody Says:

    I have no idea! I’m too white bread middle class to belong to antifa, and my general preference for building actual electoral coalitions to pointless rhetorical one-upmanship (and my position on transgenderism) probably preclude me from counting as an SJW.

    But, um, how’s the John Birch Society? alt-right? Counter-jihad? Stereotype stereotype stereotype?

  126. DNW Says:

    ” neo-neocon Says:
    July 6th, 2017 at 5:52 pm

    Somebody:

    Oh, please. You did NOT merely “claim that fascism is intellectually rooted in the right.” Even if you had said only that, that would be wrong. It is not rooted in the right, intellectually or otherwise, as many people here have made clear—unless you define “the right” in your own especially idiosyncratic way.

    But again: this was not the initial claim you made that got everyone here all riled up. What you wrote—and I quote you exactly here—was this (at 2:48 on July 5):

    …fascism is absolutely in every way a right wing movement…

    That’s not just a stupid comment, it’s an absurd one.”

    On one thread there are no absolutes or precisely defining categories … just thought provoking questions of degree … as befits a man with a nuanced, sophisticated, shades of grey, Dorian or otherwise, mind. When is a “pile” actually a pile?

    Given that camels must carry, or men must pay, how many straws does it take to break a camel’s back, and at what point shall we call it unjust?

    On another? Well, distinctions do seem to imply categorical differences which admit no doubt. The progressive advocates of social security may have found some of their most favored models in Germany and Italy. But none dare call it leftism.

  127. Somebody Says:

    DNW,

    Oh man! If you want to get into the question of the pile, I recommend we start with Nietzsche’s “On Truth and Lies in a Nonmoral Sense” and Derrida’s “Sign, Structure, and Play.”

    But a lot of hay has been made over the distinction between “fascism is absolutely a right wing movement” and “fascism is rooted in the right intellectually.” And I think I just realized why: you’re reading those as two distinct arguments, but they’re just saying the same thing in two different ways. Saying that fascism is a right wing phenomenon is not controversial if you accept that a) the right (just like the left) is primarily an intellectual, discursive phenomenon and b) fascism exists on the extreme fringe of the politics spectrum. I suspect when I say “fascism is a right wing phenomenon” you imagine I’m saying something like “fascists believe what you believe” or “fascists are your intellectual neighbors” or…something, I’m really reaching here, because I think you’ve misunderstood what I’m tying to say so badly that I’m not 100% sure what’s upsetting you but something along those lines? But I haven’t argued any of that.

    And,yes–liberals (and conservatives) who either advocate for or otherwise embrace social security can point to historical models of social security in Germany. But you sound, with your gotcha! question, like you don’t know the origins of the German welfare state has its origins in the arch-conservative government of Otto von Bismarck? Bismarck, whose goal was explicitly to foster worker’s loyalty to the Kaiser and Prussian aristocracy as German nationalists; he was explicitly competing with socialists to preserve a conservative Protestant monarchy in the face of socialists’ appeal to workers as a class.

    It’s a really interesting period in German history! But it definitely wasn’t “leftism.”

  128. Ymar Sakar Says:

    Congrats on giving some boy time in your life you won’t ever get back.

    No wonder conservatives are dog gloried in love with Trum. They need a fighter, not a talker. Then again, Trum also talks on twitter like mad.

  129. AesopFan Says:

    Somebody Says:
    July 6th, 2017 at 7:24 pm
    (numbering added)

    (1).. Scholars have spent decades elucidating the defining characteristics of fascism–its obsession with restoring an imaginary past, its obsession with violent, masculine authority in a single person, its anti-intellectualism, its extreme nationalism and racialism, its obsession with national crisis, and so on–all of which represent right wing precepts carried to a murderous, perverted extreme. None of these, of course, belong intellectually on the left–which has its own set of precepts which, if carried to perverse extremes, gives us totalitarian monstrosities like communism.

    (2) If it helps to understand, I don’t consider myself “on the left” except insofar as we colloquially put modern American liberals on the left, when I don’t adhere to most of the left’s traditional precepts (like redistributing control over means and modes to workers as a class), and modern American conservatives are “on the right” only insofar as we colloquially put you there….

    (3) Just as there’s no classically right wing party in America–devoted to preserving or restoring monarchical and clerics governance, there’s no classically left wing party that is explicitly a workers’ party focused on redistribution of means and modes.

    (4) And it’s important to remember the intellectual context in Europe during the rise of fascism was exactly that context–a political spectrum that is alien to modern american politics.

    (5) Mussolini’s embracing of both the Italian king and the pope as tools of his statist rule were examples of embracing the right wing–the classical right wing that doesn’t exist any more–and not anything that could honestly be construed as left wing.

    (6) Right? One of the biggest divides between left and right during the rise of fascism was over clericalism vs anti-clericalism. It’s utterly irrelevant to modern American politics. You can’t separate fascism’s intellectual history from its historical context, which looked very different from ours.

    (7) And look, both modern American liberalism and conservatism bear far more resemblance to each other than they do to either socialism or fascism
    * *

    Thanks for pointing out so clearly that any arguments over whether or not some current American faction is right-wing, left-wing, or fascist is totally nonsensical: see points (2) – (6).

    You asked somewhere above why the people attributing fascism to the current American conservative “right” (yourself, for instance) seem to be “talking past” people who don’t agree (most of us), and wonder why we don’t see things the same way.

    You gave us a clue in your points (2) & (7): colloquialism that inaccurately identifies ideology.

    No American conservative today is a Monarchist / Clericalist; most modern “conservatives” espouse classical liberal values; most “liberals” do likewise; socialists (who have their own political parties) do not, believing that the liberal values of freedom and individual autonomy are anathema to collective control of the polity; and neither do fascists (no political party identifies itself as such) because they.. believe that the liberal values of freedom and individual autonomy are anathema to the autocratic control of the polity.

    What you have done in this thread, rightly drawing our hostess’s genteel ire, is argue for the Right-wing identification of Mussolini’s fascists (holding in your mind the context of the 1930s as in point (5), which is quite valid), and then declare yourself to be surprised that today’s readers, conditioned by decades of common usage, assumed you meant to imply the colloquial attributions of right-wing as in point (2), and object to that identification because, as you conceded, the current American right and the historical European right have no congruity.

    The thrust of your imputation, of course, is to attach the negative characteristics of fascism to conservatives.

    You do this by an artful sleight-of-hand in point (1) by giving us a list of negative traits that “scholars” attribute to fascism, then assert these to be right-wing characteristics “perverted to the extreme” without citing any evidence to prove that connection.

    The list in (1) sounds about right for Mussolini — although it leaves out all the social and economic fasces that he wanted to bind together — but I don’t think that either the Classical Right-Wingers (Monarchs and Clerics Party) or contemporary conservatives should bear the burden of these “fascist” characteristics:
    Just because they don’t “belong intellectually on the left” doesn’t mean they HAVE TO belong to the right.

    (In fact, they don’t strike me as being particularly descriptive of the French aristocracy of the time, whereas they do sound a lot like the actual historical French Left to me, considering how the Revolution played out.)

    As for describing current ideologies, let’s see: “its obsession with restoring an imaginary past creating an idealistic future, its obsession with violent, masculine authority in a single person elite, its anti-pseudo-intellectualism, its extreme (inter)nationalism and racialism class discrimination, its obsession with national crisis,” describes socialism pretty well, I think.

    Bottom line: conservatives get irritated at being called fascists when we know perfectly well that we aren’t.

  130. blert Says:

    Thank you Aesop.

  131. Somebody Says:

    Aesop,

    It’s literally not at all my implication. On the contrary, I repeatedly and explicitly asserted exactly the opposite. I realize I’m long winded and I can’t expect everyone to read through all my gasbag posts, but if you skim through, you’ll see that I repeatedly expressed my belief that an extremist movement does not reflect on the political beliefs it’s tangentially related to. The entirety of Goldberg, et al’s project is intellectual elucidation; if it feels like I’m making a partisan argument, I think it’s because we’ve been conditioned to treat virtually everything as a partisan argument, but it’s not and never has been and I’ve articulated that repeatedly and clearly.

  132. Somebody Says:

    And hey, it’s hard enough to be a liberal and carry the moral weight of communism! I don’t need fascism too. And that’s what, honestly, Goldberg’s revision feels like–an effort to shift the moral and rhetorical burden from conservatives who feel like they’re unfairly being tarred as fascists onto liberals, so they can feel unfairly tarred.

    Which I would also find irritating if it mattered! But no one is responsible for the actions of monsters who died before we were born who were linked through tangential intellectual connections! The most irritating part, again, is the shoddiness of the revisionism. Compare the way Goldberg dismisses the KKK as a movie- fan subculture (which doesn’t reflect actual history in anyway), dismisses its proto-fascism by way of its hostility to Mussolini (overlooking that he built a case that Hitler’s hostility to communism reflected only and intra-left rivalry AND fascism’s congenital hostility to foreigners, including fascist foreigners), and then insinuates the Nation of Islam is fascist by virtue of its interactions with the Klan. (NoI probably is proto-fascist but not for this reason but even if that were true it would still invalidate a good part of Goldberg’s analysis.) that is, he didn’t know his history and he built a comically inconsistent argument but his work was still the first one that Neoneocon cited and THAT is what annoys me. It’s a polemic, and, worse, it’s sloppy!

  133. Somebody Says:

    Anyway, if anyone wants a handy checklist of traits that define fascism and explain their relationship to the right, I’ll again offer Umberto Eco’s essay on the subject for anyone curious:

    http://www.nybooks.com/articles/1995/06/22/ur-fascism/

  134. Ymar Sakar Says:

    How does some boy who doesn’t even carry the weight of the deaths they helped cause in O care, possibly be worried about carrying the moral weight of communism or any other ism?

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.
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