September 11th, 2017

Dennis Prager on conservatives as the new Marranos

Here’s an excerpt:

For those unfamiliar with the term, Marranos was the name given to Jews in medieval Spain and Portugal who secretly maintained their Judaism while living as Catholics in public, especially in the 15th century during the Spanish Inquisition.

There is, of course, no Spanish Inquisition in America today — no one is being tortured into confessing what they really believe, and no one is being burned at the stake. But there are millions of Marrano-like Americans: Americans who hold conservative views — especially those who hold conservative positions on social issues and those who voted for Donald Trump for president.

Millions of Americans who hold conservative and/or pro-Trump views rationally fear ostracism by their peers, public humiliation, ruined reputations, broken families, job loss and the inability to work in their field. Under these circumstances, they have decided that coming out as conservative or pro-Trump is not worth the persecution they would endure.

Well, it’s not just recent, and it’s not just a post-Trump phenomenon. For over a decade I’ve been hearing from people not just in the US but all over the world (particularly those employed in academia) who feel they have to keep their mouths shut to survive.

I’m not one of them. Not that I go outside wearing a T-shirt proclaiming my politics—I don’t. Nor do I have a bumper sticker on my car. That’s for a number of reasons, among them the fact that I was never in the habit of declaring my politics in those ways even before my political change. Nor do I seek out political discussions; never did. But all of the people who know me at all well—and even some who are only mild acquaintances—know what my politics are. That’s because I “came out” over a decade ago, before I realized there would be any social repercussions at all.

Naive much? Certainly. But I was soon disabused of any naivete I’d had on that score. In recent years I continue to tend to avoid talking about politics much (except with those I know to be simpatico) because it’s just too contentious and divisive. People often get all riled up so that they can’t hear anything that is said, and anyway there is probably too much for me to try to explain in a conversation and the listener has to be at least somewhat receptive. With people who have sent out signals that they are in that latter group, I still do have some political conversations. But not too many; I am easily wearied on the subject at this point.

But even with this general avoidance of political discussions that are almost bound to be fruitless, I can feel a certain amount of tension from some people I know towards me, to different degrees. Those who love me have made their peace with it, but that doesn’t mean they like the situation. Some people—just a few—stopped talking to me years ago, but the vast majority have not. Luckily, I don’t have to deal with academia.

I have come to consider all of this tension to be just part of the territory of being a conservative. Now and then I have even thought of moving. But I never found a place to move to that made sense to me. And even if I were to live in a red state, that wouldn’t change who my old friends are, or who my relatives are.

Whenever I’ve posted that sort of thing in the past, a certain number of people in the comments section have told me to stop talking to all those friends and loved ones who differ with me politically. I strongly feel that such a suggestion shows a lack of understanding of the nature and meaning of love and friendship.

It’s not going to happen, not with me.

66 Responses to “Dennis Prager on conservatives as the new Marranos”

  1. j e Says:

    I have a very strong feeling, although it is not in any sense provable, that those who are inclined to sever a friendship over political differences almost invariably belong to the left. I also believe that one of the most pernicious legacies from the Cultural Revolution of the 1960s is the conflation in all matters of the political with the personal.

  2. texexec Says:

    I wouldn’t have a pro-Trump bumper sticker on my car in Austin for fear of getting the car “keyed”. And I certainly wouldn’t have one in CA.

  3. Griffin Says:

    I refuse to engage. Period. If a conversation starts to drift into Trump Derangement territory I just drift away. If I seem rude then too bad and if that identifies me then who cares. And since I would rather gouge my eye out with a rusty fork than be on Facebook I can pleasantly go along and mostly not know who the nutters really are.

  4. Sam L. Says:

    The Left are the New McCartyites.

  5. Assistant Village Idiot Says:

    @ j e – they are not invariably on the left, but it is more common. There was a FB unfriending study in 2016 that I will try and dig out, which showed liberals much more likely to unfriend over politics. Though even those weren’t a majority – I think it was something like 29% of liberals had unfriended for politics vs 11% of conservatives. I continue to be amazed at the level of general insult that family and old friends will use live, in correspondence, or on social media about what they fancy conservatives’ Real Motives are, knowing that I am within range. I can’t imagine making a general critical comment without hedging it and clarifying it in precise terms.

    I may engage more often than is wise, sometimes seeking a (cynical) point of agreement, or simply registering that there is another side to the story. One online friend says he uses the human equivalent to “nice doggie” while retreating against someone who looks determined to fight. No point.

    I make mild comments mostly to create space for others present, to let them know they are not isolated. If there are no others present I don’t bother.

  6. Kyndyll G Says:

    I had a conversation with an older family member (Family Member A) this past weekend who had another family member (Family Member B) hang up on him during a recent phone call. This happens often. Family Member B, a way-way-way lefty, calls up A and after a few moments of chitchat begins the political harassment of A, known to be a religio-conservative righty. If A debates back or otherwise annoys the patronizing and sanctimonious B, B hangs up on him. Eventually, after some random period of weeks or months, B calls back and engages A in political attack again. This has been going on since around the beginning of the second Obama term, and it appears to being causing a lot of pain, guilt and sense of loss on the part of A, who is at a life stage in which he wants to make peace with friends and family.

    They are both over 70 years old and have known each other their whole lives. The political split has always been there, but only in recent years does B feel the need to seek out and harass A until the point of hostility and abrupt disconnections. This is what the current political divide has done to people, and frankly, if I had no fingers I could count on them the number of times I have seen righties start, instigate or escalate the problem.

    The hard left set is enraged simply because we exist. We don’t have to say or do anything.

  7. Stu Says:

    To the left politics is their life and their world view their religion. The rest of us are considered heretics. How fortunate we are to have a life outside of politics and enjoy cultural, social and physical activities that give meaning to our lives.

  8. Griffin Says:

    My non engagement policy really took hold right after the election when one of my closest blood relatives who I have always been very close to even though we differ politically let loose with some truly shocking comments about Trump voters in general. I’d be lying if I said I don’t think a little less of her but such is life. Since then we keep our conversation focused on other things which of course we are often perfectly aligned.

  9. Cornflour Says:

    Not talking to political opponents is not symmetric. Socialists (aka progressives) don’t talk to conservatives because they hate them. Conservatives don’t talk to socialists because they don’t like the abuse.

    In my experience, this is a rough but accurate generalization, and I think the difference is important. To some extent, the difference–and what lies beneath it–led to the populism of Trump and the extremism of the alt-right.

  10. Lowell Says:

    So what is one to do with dear family members and lifetime friends who cant accept that SHE lost? And what’s worse,apparently, that Trump won? I follow politics very closely but there are still a few things more important. So I bite my tongue and avoid certain topics when with them.

  11. neo-neocon Says:

    Cornflour:

    My experience is that my friends and relatives who are on the left and who don’t talk to me about politics (but do talk to me about other things) do so because they like (or love) me and want to preserve our relationship. They feel that if they talk to me about politics or read my blog, it will damage our relationship.

    On the other hand, the few people who did stop talking to me because of politics (a) aren’t talking to me, so they never explained that the cause of the cutoff was political although I have reasons for concluding it was; and (b) weren’t so very close to me in the first place.

  12. neo-neocon Says:

    Lowell:

    At a recent family event I noticed one member had a sort of compulsion to make nasty “jokes” about Trump every few minutes, even if no one was discussing politics at all. I just ignored it, as did most people (even the liberal listeners) because it was so strange and extreme.

  13. Griffin Says:

    Neo,

    The one major difference for you and other bloggers is that I presume that all or close to all of your family and friends know there is a huge depository filled with your opinions where as for an everyday person unless you are the type that comments on every political issue at every turn then it is somewhat easy to coexist. There are few people IRL that I am really open with politically. It’s just so damn boring and really nothing good comes from in my opinion.

  14. Paul R Says:

    I’m with you Neo…most of my loved ones and many of my friends are liberals….i live in the Northeast (NJ), and I like it here. I also don’t know where I’d go if I moved. some of them I can joke with about politics, others I can’t. I’ve come to understand I’m not going to change any of their minds. So I just enjoy their company and avoid volatile subjects.

    I have a few conservative friends and reserve political discussions for them.

    Truth is, leftism is not logical. So those who abide by it really are a little deficient in the reasoning department. That’s not something to chastise somebody over.

  15. neo-neocon Says:

    Griffin:

    Not only that, but if I meet a new person and that person asks me what I do these days, I have a choice. I can lie, or be vague, or I can say I write. Then they may or may not ask what I write. Then I have another choice of how much I want to explain. Usually I remain very vague, which sounds sort of odd and is probably off-putting. I’ve had people say, “Why so mysterious?”

  16. Cornflour Says:

    Neo:

    Your experience is yours, and mine is mine. Of course, I’d never argue otherwise.

    In my experience, people who’ve undergone a political change from left to right are granted a tentative dispensation by lefties who once knew them as one of their own.

    Nothing is said out loud, but every once in a while, I’ve found out what they say behind my back, and that’s led to no little bitterness.

    The question is whether your experience or mine is more representative. You know what I think.

  17. Dave Says:

    the easiest way to spot a message posted by a liberal on any random message board/forum/facebook is to see if the message starts with the words “you are such a idiot to think….” liberals love personal attacks.

  18. physicsguy Says:

    I was attending a meeting last week of science dept chairs. This group normally is laid back and the main interest is in distributing some funds we have for teaching equipment purchases, and then general promotion of the science departments.

    Since dept chair is a rotating position, each year we get some new chairs for the meeting, and one was the new bio chair. Generally I’ve had good interactions with this woman. At the meeting the new chair of Env Studies said he thought our meetings should be more open and transparent. The rest of us oldies didn’t like the idea as getting things done with 6 people is tough enough and impossible if all the science faculty showed up.

    Well the new bio chair suddenly lashed out at me saying I was against the proposal because I was loaded with privilege as a white “cis” male. She was livid. Well I responded forcefully saying I took her statements to be racist, and sexist, and what the hell did it have to do with the topic at hand of open meetings? She immediately backed down. Of course there were 3 other white “cis” males in the room, but she attacked me of course as a target because of my politics.

    I definitely learned one thing about these academic bullies: treat them as such, attack them back and they wilt. They expect others to immediately become shamed and submissive. When it doesn’t happen, they are flummoxed. Time to fight back even more I think.

  19. Dave Says:

    Obama broke an engagement with a girl after he met Michelle and somehow the liberals praise him for doing that claiming otherwise we wouldn’t have such a perfect first lady in Michelle. I couldn’t believe that there could be people out there praising a man for doing that to a girl, that is some of the most disgusting thing I have heard a guy doing to a girl. That is like real life version of a place in the sun, Robb Stark doing that resulted in the Red Wedding, but still the liberals believe it was an honorable thing Obama did, because he was Obama.

  20. expat Says:

    Dave, That marriage was to give Obama some street creds and to give Michelle a better chance to move beyond Chicago machine politics.

  21. Cornflour Says:

    physicsguy:

    Lucky you have tenure. If you have younger, conservative colleagues, especially cis-males, you might want to counsel more caution.

  22. Chris Says:

    I generally won’t engage in political discussions except with those I know share my beliefs. I have some dear friends and family members who are liberals and who know that I am a conservative, but there seems to be an unspoken agreement among us not to talk politics when we are together.

    If I am in a situation where some rabid liberals are going off on one of their rants I will generally hold my tongue, except when they are attacking someone who has defended Trump or committed some other heresy. In those cases (like Assistant Village Idiot) I will support the person being attacked to defuse the situation and let them know they are not alone. Often, I’ve found that another conservative who has not previously spoken up will then jump in as well.

  23. physicsguy Says:

    Cornflour,

    A few years ago even with tenure and being fully promoted, I wouldn’t have done that. I had two kids in college and wasn’t going to risk anything that would jeopardize that. They are now graduated and I have a retirement date set. Amazing how all of that liberates one’s mouth.

    And I sincerely doubt there are ANY younger faculty who are conservative. They make sure none of those are ever hired.

  24. Gringo Says:

    I tend to steer clear of political discussions. Maybe, with physicsguy as an example, I might speak out some.

    Speaking of Marranos (a.k.a. Conversos– converts) , I have run across some interesting examples. Years ago in a company training course in Houston, one of my fellow students was a Spaniard of the Jewish faith. He informed me that his family had secretly practiced Judaism in the 400+ years after the 1492 expulsion of Jews who wouldn’t convert. Some time in the 20th century they no longer had to hide their faith.

    One of my neighbors is a Tejano, which identifies someone whose family was in Texas before the Anglos came. In doing some research on his family’s ancestry, he found out that he had an ancestor – a Spanish army officer- in northern Mexico who was a Converso. Conversos who wanted to preserve their Spanish roots often went to the outposts of the Spanish Empire, where the hand of church and state would be lighter. When his brother was stationed in Italy during his time in the Navy, he found out that Italian Jews considered his surname to be Jewish. Castro is a surname associated with Conversos, which has led to speculation over the years about Fidel Castro.

  25. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    It has yet to be mentioned that the opprobrium is spreading and escalating.

    It used to be that expressing a nonPC opinion was verbotten.

    Now, an attempt was made to deny a prominent conservative’s participation in a nonpolitical events; “Can a Conservative Conduct an Orchestra?”

    How long will it take before everyday conservatives cannot participate in non-political events without being attacked?

  26. parker Says:

    From my POV refusing to engage is an act of surrender. The left live in a fairy tell bubble. Poking at the bubble rarely produces anything positive. But when I rarely encounter in my face BS from a leftist I calmly explain why they are dangerous to free will. That’s just me.

  27. Griffin Says:

    parker,

    Wanting family events to not devolve into shouting (or worse) fights is not an act of surrender. It is being the adult and knowing the time and place.

  28. Llwddythlw Says:

    On more than one occasion since the election somebody with whom I’m not well acquainted has engaged me in conversation and assumed that I must be open to making ignorant and offensive remarks about Trump. It happened the other day when I was attending a presentation by an intern and which included some rather pointless gibe. I was prompted to point out to the speaker that whatever he or I thought of the President, roughly 50% of the voters had supported him, and I asked if he was confident that all of his potential clients would be in the 50% who had not voted for him.

  29. parker Says:

    Griffin,

    Not a problem in my extended family. Even with the youngsters. Rather sad for those who have that ugly issue. Family should hold the center most place in our lives. When family members can not agree to disagree without anger (or worse) something is seriously wrong within the family. Is that not obvious?

  30. CV Says:

    I work in academia (staff not faculty) and I keep my mouth shut. I truly believe that my job might be jeopardized if my colleagues knew about my social conservative views, and I have two kids still in college. Most of my work friends simply assume that I am a liberal Democrat, as all “right-thinking people” are.

    Trump derangement syndrome is wearying. I endured 8 years of Obama and somehow managed to get through it without lashing out in rage at those around me who voted him into office (not once but twice!) I wish people would return the favor!

  31. parker Says:

    CV,

    That is sad. But the left knows no bounds on their claim of virtue. 1917 Russia, 1932 Germany, and so it goes.

  32. Griffin Says:

    parker,

    Not everybody can be so fortunate as to have a perfect family, I guess. Is that not obvious?

  33. Cornflour Says:

    CV:

    Until I retired, I was also non-faculty professional staff. I’ve worked at four universities in the US and two outside the country. If you’re a conservative, your job, career, reputation, and ability to make a living are all in jeopardy. Speaking carefully becomes a way of life.

    Even more regrettably, if your children attend the university where you work, their lives could also be ruined by leftists who discover your sympathies.

    I had a back-up plan and a second income, so I didn’t feel completely trapped, but I sympathize with your situation.

  34. miklos000rosza Says:

    I’m still hanging on in the literary world, which is connected (through movie and TV options on one’s books) to the showbiz world, both of which are, I daresay, as elitist/Leftist as academia. The literary world in particular is dominated by young females.

  35. steve walsh Says:

    I’m a political conservative, of the libertarian variety, surrounded by liberals and progressives, particularly in my family and among my friends. Other than one of my sisters I do not engage in discussions of politics. The one sister I speak with is quite fair minded and our discussions are always focused on learning rather than political argument and combat.

    Someone here characterizes the refusal to engage as surrender. I say that opining on controversial and divisive topics with family and friends is just rude. There is joy in engaging others in activities of mutual interest – doing so over topics on which we disagree is just destructive. I won’t do it.

    Over the years we have learned who each other is and believes, I’m blessed with a family and with friends that understand and focus on what we share rather than what divides us.

  36. Griffin Says:

    steve walsh,

    Well said!

  37. huxley Says:

    Then there are Trump supporters who 86 conservatives not on the Trump bandwagon.

    I lost a hippie friend I knew from from 1977 who turned Michael Savage conservative then turned on me in 2016 because one day when I was halfway out of my mind in the process of selling my house, packing up and moving on because I didn’t want to talk Donald Trump that Sunday morning.

    I tried to make up but he wouldn’t return any of my overtures.

    In my book Trump people are pretty close to leftists for their vicious, take-no-prisoners partisanship.

    Maybe the math works out in the long run for Trump’s Jacksoniansim. I see the argument.

    But I don’t have to like it. I don’t have to support it.

    I’ve been disabused of my naivete at the level as well.

  38. DNW Says:

    If you work for a big organization, then you are liable to pressure.

    If you don’t you are likely to be despised as being insufficiently capable and socialized and thus per se immoral, as collectivists define moral.

    It’s not new. Allow me to quote from the same articles from which I excerpted some of the earlier Michael Moore quotes.

    It is a social war with these people.

    And yes … they hate you for what you are: because true to Marxist analysis they see progressive “evolution” in terms of class conflict; and if the rich are somehow not accessible enough targets, then the independent operator is.

    And why if you are a leftist are you supposedly justified in hating such a person as a “human”? Because, again on Marxist analysis the “essence” of man or any particular human, that is to say what defines him, is found in and results from his participation in a particular mode of production.

    Listen to Moore as he opens a window into his own mind’s moral framework:

    “When asked by a reporter from the Arcata Eye in 2002 why he wasn’t speaking at independent bookstores rather than at corporate chains, he exploded in a tirade that revealed his willingness to have his principles—in this case, his distrust of corporate power—take a backseat to his personal vengefulness. “You know in my town the small businesses that everyone wanted to protect? They were the people that supported all the right-wing groups,” he ranted. “They were the Republicans in town, they were in Kiwanis, the Chamber of Commerce—people that kept the town all white. The small hardware salesman, the small clothing store sales persons, Jesse the Barber who signed his name three different times on three different petitions to recall me from the school board. Fuck all these small businesses—fuck ’em all. Bring in the chains.”

    It’s not just limited vengeance and accounts keeping with Moore. Instead it is a generalization he has made regarding people who choose to live a certain kind of less beholden life. Which in itself is seen as antisocial per se. Not that Moore was able to adapt to organization life and rule abiding himself. But then the lawgivers of progressivism can hardly be expected to be constrained by the the laws they lay down for others

  39. huxley Says:

    DNW: If I may ask, to what extent is it social war if I disagree with you?

  40. Richard Aubrey Says:

    I have a relation who is quite liberal. She attends a liberal congregation of a liberal denomination. I am thinking of asking what the result would be if someone stood up in a meeting and said they were having doubts about the divinity of Jesus.
    Or doubts about CAGW.

    Maybe I’ll keep my mouth shut, but takes character.

  41. miklos000rosza Says:

    All of my friends are on the Left. My sister (now deceased) and her daughter, my closest younger friends (each might be reasonable on individual issues but feel tremendous to the notion of anything but the Progressive creed. My five best friends in the literary world, three females two males.

    A great deal of completely uncritical Obama worship, mostly I believe because he’s black.

  42. Ymar Sakar Says:

    Religions will usually not marry outside the faith, due to the conflicts of raising families between two religious dogmas that conflict.

    The Roman Catholics, the Amish, the Latter Day Saints, and various others, are high and middle on this aspect. Also J Witnesses.

    As a result, people, including atheist libertarians, talk about shunning or social sanitation circles. Cults also talk about the same thing.

    That’s because no matter what a person’s social status is, society itself has to deal with internal and external enemies and humans being humans, the methods tend to look alike.

    In my book Trump people are pretty close to leftists for their vicious, take-no-prisoners partisanship.

    That has less to do with Trum and more to do with how much weed hippies tended to use, permanently destroying their capability to cultivate, control, and mature in emotions. So when they get offended, they tend to act like teenagers or whatever age group they first started smoking. They never grew out of that, because bio chemically, they’re still stuck on stupid. They should know better, but the moment when they read or react to a stimuli, they have the mind of a 12 year old. They can’t stop themselves.

    Also, former Demoncrats and Leftists, aren’t known for their self control and self discipline either. Even without weed weeding up hippies, they are corrupted by their religious dogma.

    Conservatives have always had to step down and bow down to Leftists, especially in DC and Hollywood.

  43. AesopFan Says:

    Sam L. Says:
    September 11th, 2017 at 3:55 pm
    The Left are the New McCartyites.

    https://i1.wp.com/www.powerlineblog.com/ed-assets/2017/09/Libs-on-Free-Speech-1.jpeg

  44. AesopFan Says:

    The othering of conservatives started before Bush (as CK says earlier in his post, with Reagan, and possibly even Ike). Trump is the fourth time the Democrats lost to a deplorable. No wonder they are apoplectic now.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A37224-2004Aug26.html

    The Pressure-Cooker Theory

    By Charles Krauthammer
    Friday, August 27, 2004; Page A21

    Historians will have a field day trying to fathom the depths of detestation that the Democrats are carrying into this campaign. Vanity is only part of it. What else is at play? First, and most obviously, revenge. Democrats have convinced themselves that Bush stole the last election. They cannot bear suffering not just a bad presidency but an illegitimate one.

    Moreover, against all expectations, it turned out to be a consequential presidency. Bush was not the mild-mannered, Gerald Ford-like Republican he was expected to be — transitional and minor. He turned out to be quite the revolutionary, most especially in his radical reordering of American foreign policy. A usurper is merely offensive; a consequential usurper is intolerable.

    But that is still not enough to account for the level of venom today. It is not often that a losing presidential candidate (Al Gore) compares the man who defeated him to both Hitler and Stalin. It is not often that a senior party leader (Edward Kennedy) accuses a sitting president of starting a war (“cooked up in Texas”) to gain political advantage for his reelection.

    The loathing goes far beyond the politicians. Liberals as a body have gone quite around the twist. I count one all-star rock tour, three movies, four current theatrical productions and five bestsellers (a full one-third of the New York Times list) variously devoted to ridiculing, denigrating, attacking and devaluing this president, this presidency and all who might, God knows why, support it.

    How to explain? With apologies to Dr. Freud, I propose the Pressure Cooker Theory of Hydraulic Release.

    The hostility, resentment, envy and disdain, all superheated in Florida, were not permitted their natural discharge. Came Sept. 11 and a lid was forced down. How can you seek revenge for a stolen election by a nitwit usurper when all of a sudden we are at war and the people, bless them, are rallying around the flag and hailing the commander in chief? With Bush riding high in the polls, with flags flying from pickup trucks (many of the flags, according to Howard Dean, Confederate), the president was untouchable.

    The Democrats fell unnaturally silent. For two long, agonizing years, they had to stifle and suppress. It was the most serious case of repression since Freud’s Anna O. went limp. The forced deference nearly killed them. And then, providentially, they were saved. The clouds parted and bad news rained down like manna: WMDs, Abu Ghraib, Richard Clarke, Paul O’Neill, Joe Wilson and, most important, continued fighting in Iraq.

    With the president stripped of his halo, his ratings went down. The spell was broken. He was finally, once again, human and vulnerable. With immense relief, the critics let loose.

    The result has been volcanic. The subject of one prominent new novel is whether George W. Bush should be assassinated. This is all quite unhinged. Good God. What if Bush is reelected? If they lose to him again, Democrats will need more than just consolation. They’ll need therapy.
    * * *
    Mr. Krauthammer does not appear to like President Trump, but he predicted the reaction to him.

  45. AesopFan Says:

    Not really political but funny. I edited the original, from here:
    https://notalwaysright.com/theres-no-reason-we-cant-be-civil/75579/?fb_action_ids=10152561644376983&fb_action_types=og.likes

    There’s No Reason We Can’t Be Civil
    COMPUTER STORE | DETROIT, MI, USA | RIGHT | NOVEMBER 28, 2012
    (I am a Civil War re-enactor. I am returning home from an event, still in my full Union uniform, and I make a quick stop at a major computer store. On this day people are being distracted by an angry customer who is throwing a loud fit. He is complaining that the store doesn’t carry a transmitter for his 40-year-old receiver.)

    Customer: “I’ve been shuffled from one store after another to find this part! I can’t believe you don’t carry it! You’re all just a bunch of .. nerds caught up in your modern computers! You’re just trying to talk me into buying a computer, but I’m not having anything to do with that!”

    Employee: “Sir, I promise you that I’m not trying to get you to buy a computer. But if you’re looking for an outdated part, we can try and find it for you online.”

    Customer: “You’ll look stuff up online, steal my credit card information and make me buy a computer! I’m on to .. the way you use your nerd skills to rip people off and spy on them! I’m not having anything to do with your modern .. technology!”

    (I finally step up next to the customer and loudly speak to the employee.)

    Me: *to the employee* “I’m sorry, does this mean you can’t help me fix my telegraph?”

    (The angry customer turns and gives me a sharp look. His face flushes between surprise and confusion as he sees me in my Civil War uniform, but as he opens his mouth to continue, most everyone surrounding us starts laughing. He turns red and storms out of the store.)

    Employee: *to me* “God bless the Army of the Potomac!”

  46. Julia Says:

    Someone I work with is a liberal Hispanic from Miami. He informed me that the reason Trump supported some policy about Cuba (sending Cubans back – dry foot? – I don’t recall the exact policy, nor do I care) because it was only going to effect black Cubans since all the white Cubans were already here.

    You see, this is because Trump is racist.

    As we were speaking, I googled it, and it turns out that it was Obama’s policy originally. I mentioned it to him, and asked if that meant it was still racist.

    He stammered, hemmed and hawed. I doubt he changed his mind about this being proof of Trump’s racism.

    I see the same accusations on FB, of people that I know IRL.

    My concern here is that it’s bad, and getting worse. Where does it stop? Leftists never stop with their demands. Look at gun control, gay marriage (“bake the cake”), and all other moral perversions they foist on us. It NEVER stops.

    Quite frankly, new people I meet – if I know they are leftists / liberals, I stop liking them. Why? Because I know that if/when they know my opinions, they WILL stop liking me. Maybe even hate me. Old friends get a pass.

    We are losing the propaganda war, which I think is a subset of the culture wars. We have no ideas on how to win, or even stem or slow the losses.

    I’m with Subotai Bahadur – these people are no longer our countrymen.

  47. arfldgrs Says:

    IT would be a privelege to answer this, but since that is so, and i am white (the race that saved the jews), i am not allowed to. Right now, we are discussing making the same laws of germany against jews but agianst whites.. (1 wants a good genoicide, another says post birth abortions to adult for those unfit for living, and another wants to forbid them to work. (like where i am as they have systematically fired ALL White staff who are not russian or jewish and replaced them with pocs)

  48. Mark30339 Says:

    A like to each of the commenters above for their thoughtful words (and a gold star for PhysicsGuy), but a THOUSAND likes to AesopFan because I’m ROTFLMAO. If we conservatives can hold on to humor and good will, we can endure these apparent difficulties. The left thinks WE are the reason they are unhappy, but it’s just scapegoating to avoid the bitter void at the heart of their post-modern neo-marxism. (Yes, I have become a Jordan Peterson youtube acolyte.)

  49. DNW Says:

    ” huxley Says:
    September 11th, 2017 at 9:07 pm

    DNW: If I may ask, to what extent is it social war if I disagree with you? “

    Well, I can try and explain at least.

    You can disagree with me to any extent at all and it will never be social war, as long as it costs me nothing and troubles me not at all in terms of real world obligations, and involuntary transfers of productive effort. LOL

    But, more seriously, by “social war” I mean what I have meant by that in the past. That is, I mean political action undertaken within a philosophical framework in which persons with a collective minded philosophical anthropology, determine that they will use their positions in whatever institutions they may inhabit, in order to “evolve” all humanity within the polity (or ‘society’ as they prefer) more to their ‘enlightened’ satisfaction.

    In other words they agree with Marx on at least two very important points:

    1, That freedom in the sense of negative liberty is relatively unimportant – as the exigencies of life for some, make that kind of liberty almost useless to them. And thus managerial provision by the state (or society), rather than personal economic unshackling is what is called for.

    The idea is that nature makes slaves of us all, especially those with lesser personal powers. We even see a similar idea in some feminist theory, with references made to the tyranny of biology.

    In other words, what is conceived of by some as a natural order producing a natural identity, is precisely what is to be destroyed in the name of a new humanity.

    And 2, that socialism is identical with (this) humanism, and that those who are not socialist are per definition inhumane.

    The progressive project is not just about unleashing mans’ natural ambitions and powers in order to allow the hidden hand to build a better material world: with the assumption that the social “needs” of men can take care of themselves. But rather it is in establishing a new, less self-interested human committed to the “community” and its evolution. This project is seen as essentially a matter of conflict between classes of persons; some of whom must be removed or rendered null … by, more or less, any means necessary.

    This is nothing new even in so-called “liberalism”. As I have mentioned before, John Rawls in “A Theory of Justice”, supposedly a kind of revisitation of classical liberal principles within a Kantian-like presupposition framework, declares that the esteem of other men, is among the primary needs of man and it must be delivered to him – in the form of unconditional solidarity it seems; and, that eventually, as things progress, some form of eugenics will be necessary (though he prefers not to clutter the original discussion with future oriented details like that).

    If it can be achieved through taxation policies and the restriction of a Neanderthal’s access to the free use of property and the formation of preferential relationships, rather than through gunfire, then well and good.

    But it is war in the classic Darwinian/Marxist sense. Just as the bird that throws the eggs out of a nest built by another is waging a kind of war. And the end result is intended to be that you, if you are a cis-het male with a low tolerance for being told what to do, you will eventually …

    Well, you know what is intended. All you have to do in order to know, is to read their literature.

  50. Irv Says:

    It appears to me that the problem lies with how people view themselves and others.

    Liberals have largely replaced religion with politics and are positive that they have found the one true religion. Therefore, anyone who disagrees with them is, by definition, both a heretic and evil. Since they are positive that their way is the only morally good way and that the people they’re dealing with are evil and motivated by base motives, then the only consideration liberals owe conservatives lies within their efforts to show them the error of their ways and get them to renounce their heresy. If they persist then they must silenced by any means necessary to protect others from their dangerous heretical views. (Think Antifa here.)

    To conservatives, religion and politics are separate entities. It’s possible, religiously speaking, to be a good person and hold many different political views and the same is true of morally bad people. Conservatives judge people based on their motives and judge policies based on their outcomes.

    So when liberals and conservatives come together they have little chance of understanding each other.

    Conservatives think liberals mean well but are defective in their analyses of the best way to achieve their worthy goals. Indeed, conservatives think liberal policies are counterproductive and achieve just the opposite of their intent. They also think that liberals are just too shallow in their thinking to recognize that fact. So when conservatives argue politics they talk about the outcomes of policies and not the motivations of those instituting them.

    Liberals think conservatives are evil and their policies are obviously also evil because they come from the base motivations of those instituting them. Therefore when liberals argue politics they attack the person and their assumed base motives and refuse to discuss the policies or their effects. Liberal policies are good because liberals are good. Conservative policies are bad because conservatives are bad.

    This is how liberals can be against everything conservatives do no matter what their policies might be. Even when conservatives enact policies that liberals want, they get no credit, because they are evil. This is also why liberals feel the need to silence conservatives.

    We have to forget about coming together for the good of all. We have to take power away from them. We have to ignore them when they call us names. We have to do what we think is the right thing to do no matter how many names they call us or how much they whine that we’re not being fair.

    So far Trump is doing a pretty good job of that, but without the support of at least a substantial portion of conservatives, he won’t be able to keep it up. The pressure from the left, the media, the entertainment industry, the teachers’ unions, the government employees’ unions, the Democrat party and the establishment Republicans will eventually wear him down without our support.

    He’s not, and has never been, a staunch conservative, but our fate is inextricably tied to his. His failure will be our failure and the country’s failure because there’s no one to take his place fighting the establishment.

    He’s not a pretty lifeboat but he’s the only one coming before the flood.

  51. Tatterdemalian Says:

    You may not be interested in the war, but the war is still interested in you.

  52. Ymar Sakar Says:

    The sickness in the US is far worse than what Trum or Bush is or isn’t. It also went beyond who Hussein was or wasn’t.

    The people have become corrupt. It’s over. There is no cure to the people other than them repenting and fixing their behaviors. ANd when has that ever happened in human history…

  53. Ymar Sakar Says:

    So far Trump is doing a pretty good job of that, but without the support of at least a substantial portion of conservatives, he won’t be able to keep it up. The pressure from the left, the media, the entertainment industry, the teachers’ unions, the government employees’ unions, the Democrat party and the establishment Republicans will eventually wear him down without our support.

    The Alt Right was never much interested in the luke warm support of you conservatives or even the US patriots. They wanted to go it along, because They Were Not Tired of Winning yet.

    Of course I and others told them that Islamic Jihad, the Deep State, and DC were not enemies Trum could defeat alone… didn’t really convince anyone.

    The Alt Right elected Trum, not the other way around. Let them witness the utopia and the dystopia that they have chosen.

    Tatterdemalian Says:
    September 12th, 2017 at 4:08 pm
    You may not be interested in the war, but the war is still interested in you.

    And the Alt Right says I have to be on their side, irregardless of how they treat me, because I should be afraid of the Left above all else.

    Not much of an option there for equal negotiation.

  54. GRA Says:

    On facebook I sent an old friend a PM attempting to have a discussion about some outlandish post he wrote about white privilege (or something similar). I said I came in good faith but then he attacked me, getting personal, saying that I wasn’t a good friend because of the years that we didn’t talk. A couple of weeks later I met with two other friends who also saw the initial post. Both shook their heads as one said “Vinnie’s an idiot.”

  55. Irv Says:

    The alt-right didn’t elect Trump. There’s not enough of them to elect anybody. The working class elected Trump because they were tired of being screwed over by the establishment of both parties and of being told that the political elite could run their lives better than they could. They knew better and voted accordingly.

    I’m tired of hearing there’s a nazi under every bed. The Antifa bunch is a much greater threat to the country than the alt-right has ever been. The Antifa’s want to gather power to themselves in order to rule over others. The conservatives primary desire is to reduce the size, power and cost of government.

  56. AesopFan Says:

    Germane to the discussion, via PowerLine today:

    http://www.claremont.org/crb/basicpage/fascism-in-america/

    http://theweek.com/articles/723854/rise-trump-isnt-all-about-racism

    http://www.libertylawsite.org/2017/09/12/seek-ye-first-the-political-kingdom/

  57. AesopFan Says:

    Irv Says:
    September 12th, 2017 at 3:56 pm
    It appears to me that the problem lies with how people view themselves and others. … To conservatives, religion and politics are separate entities. It’s possible, religiously speaking, to be a good person and hold many different political views and the same is true of morally bad people. Conservatives judge people based on their motives and judge policies based on their outcomes.
    … (RTWT)
    * *
    A thoughtful essay, and IMO generally hits the target.
    Of course, not all conservatives and liberals can be characterized this way (overlapping distributions and all that stat stuff), and some will complain that it doesn’t address actual policies and ideologies at all, which is the usual mode of distinguishing the two sides, but I think it is now the most accurate descriptor.

  58. AesopFan Says:

    DNW Says:
    September 12th, 2017 at 11:03 am
    ” huxley Says:
    September 11th, 2017 at 9:07 pm

    DNW: If I may ask, to what extent is it social war if I disagree with you? “

    Well, I can try and explain at least.

    You can disagree with me to any extent at all and it will never be social war, as long as it costs me nothing and troubles me not at all in terms of real world obligations, and involuntary transfers of productive effort. LOL
    * * *
    Actually, this isn’t too far off the mark (see Irv’s comment following this one).
    The “conservative” position allows for disagreement without personal rancor; the “liberal” position demands war.

    (I should have made my usual caveat above with my reply to Irv: today’s Left is in no way to be considered liberal in the classical sense. They are authoritarian socialists — proto if not complete fascists.)

  59. huxley Says:

    The “conservative” position allows for disagreement without personal rancor; the “liberal” position demands war.

    AesopFan: That’s a nice theory which is tougher in practice and falls apart entirely when it comes to Trump and his more fervent supporters.

    It felt pretty much the same to me when one old friend dumped me because I supported George W. Bush and another old friend dumped me because I didn’t like Trump.

  60. Irv Says:

    Every side has its fervent supporters. It’s never fair or reasonable to judge a group by the outliers of that group. That’s what liberals and their supporters do to conservatives and Trump often.

    If David Duke says he agrees with any of Trump’s policies then the policies must be racist (argumentum ad populem also known as the genetic fallacy.) I learned about that in a freshman logic class almost 60 years ago. I suspect that most of the media know it too but disregard it in the case of conservatives.

    The media then compounds their error by using a reverse but similar logic to support liberals. They often say that the liberals actions con’t be judged bad because there are some outliers that aren’t bad.

  61. huxley Says:

    Every side has its fervent supporters. It’s never fair or reasonable to judge a group by the outliers of that group.

    Irv: I consider it foolish to ignore the outliers of a group.

    For instance, the outliers of National Review conservatives aren’t the same as Trump outliers.

  62. Irv Says:

    I didn’t say ignore the outliers. I said that you can’t ascribe the actions or motives of the outliers to the group as a whole. That should be obvious from the fact that they are outliers and not the voice of the majority of the group. That is the essence of the fallacy.

  63. Ymar Sakar Says:

    There’s not enough of them to elect anybody.

    Numbers wise they were less than traditional factions, but propaganda wise they were worth far more than the campaign contributions of various pacs put together.

    And it was the propaganda that Democrat “working class” needed to push them into leaving the Democrat party, for one Presidential election at least. This averted the HRC scheme of voter fraud, which was focused on Democrat cities, ignoring the Democrat hinterlands.
    The Antifa bunch is a much greater threat to the country than the alt-right has ever been. The Antifa’s want to gather power to themselves in order to rule over others.

    Those like me already were talking about the AntiFa before the AntiFa.

    People didn’t listen back then, nor are you going to listen now. What else is new.

  64. Ymar Sakar Says:

    https://ymarsakar.wordpress.com/2017/09/13/factions-in-the-alt-right/

    What’s going on in the Ctrl Left vs Alt Right won’t be found from Trum, the news, or the media. The more people here talk about them, the more distracted they are.

    People were the same way in 2007, 2012, which is why they didn’t believe my warnings. Which was fine, since I told them that the Left would stop on their face enough times to convince me, I didn’t have to lift a finger. And guess who Anti Fa just stomped.

  65. DNW Says:

    Amy Vivian Coney Barrett. Law professor, and it seems, mother of seven. The New Marranno of the political world.

    Senator Diane Feinstein detects that Barrett is one within whom the dogmas (of the Catholic Church) live loudly. Or at least loudly enough for the senator to detect. Perhaps it is the number of kids. Or her good looks, as conservatives apparently are better looking after all.

    And this is “of concern” the senator says.

    Barrett’s commitment to ‘our secular faith’ and to an unconditionally shared fate within the context of an ever changing moral hive-mind sensibility, is apparently suspect.

    Well, the Marrannos apparently had no better option or alternative than to live as fellows and political associates with those who despised them for what they were.

    Americans do have alternatives. And cost benefit – or survival – calculations eventually do come into play. The cost of one’s perpetually suffering the projection and offloading of liberal neuroses, and personality deficits, and organic dysfunctions, onto you and everyone else through the agency of the state (“this is how we take care of each other”) does, to put it plainly, exceed the benefits delivered by any political association with them.

    Nature itself will bring about a reckoning, if not man himself. The progressive conceit is that they are good enough at manipulating reality, and know enough about it, so that no matter what happens they will always stay one or two steps head of cause and effect.

    History shows that that is not a good bet.

  66. GRA Says:

    @ DNW: Wasn’t Feinstein the same woman who busted a temple vein when questioning Gorsuch about his originalism approach to the Constitution?

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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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