I used to think conservatives were backwards religious fanatics who willingly ignored the evidence before their very eyes, just to maintain their outdated and superstitious ideology. It wasn’t just a coincidence, either. Back then, I thought this was the defining characteristic of conservatism. What I thought they were conserving was an obsolete worldview.
Leftists, I thought during this time, were smarter, but misguided. They were entirely too open minded, and overconfident in their perceived ability to repair the world, the thinking went. Their myriad intellectual pursuits led them down diverse paths of thought, many of which contained bad economic ideas, but at least their hearts were in the right place, and they were open to new ways of looking at things.
Lucky for me, I thought, I was above all these foolish mistakes. I was a libertarian. Fiscally conservative, socially liberal, eventually giving way to the non-aggression principle and truly enlightened political thought.
Luckily for the country, I wasn’t in power during this time. It turns out I was completely wrong, as has so frequently turned out to be the case. One of the things which has stunned me the most over the last four years, is the distribution of intellectual thought across the political spectrum.
Today, Leftists and their libertarian counterparts have sought only to protect their positions, silence their critics, distract from issues, and even resort to violence. Their advocacy went from tolerating differences, to imposing grey uniformity, and crushing dissent. It seemed downright reasonable to say folks ought not treat gay people badly for what went on in their bedrooms, it seemed quite the opposite to tell me that gender was a social construct which could be infinitely altered and expanded by the whims of dissatisfied women, mental patients, and sexual deviants.
Non-Leftist libertarians, what few of them remained, were happy to condemn this demagoguery, but offered no meaningful resistance to it. To them, open borders was a misguided interpretation of the non-aggression principle, because in a private property society there would be no common spaces for immigrants to freely travel across. A fine theory, but absent the abolition of the State did nothing to address the immigration problems empowering the Left. Likewise, they saw hate speech and anti-discrimination laws as misguided, but offered no meaningful resistance for fear of being seen as intolerant.
Putting aside for a moment some meaningful distinctions between “conservativism” and “the Right”, this is where the intellectual power has emerged. Concerns over immigration were well founded in reality, supported by facts and science, and aimed at the preservation of far more important things than outdated superstitions. Homosexuals and transgenderism were no longer about the will of God, but rather the maintenance of society through the cohesion of its constituent parts of families and the individuals within them. Try though the Left and their allies might to make this seem like ignorance, xenophobia, and bigotry, the most cursory examination proved that this is where the cognitive capacity of our political discourse had become concentrated.
Lacking any substantive response to this phenomenon, the Left has devolved into something worse than the caricature they’ve made of Christian fundamentalists. Incapable of defeating the message, they have resorted to attacking the messengers. Meritless legal actions, censorship, character assassination, smear campaigns, and even physical violence have become the norm.
None of this comes as news to the Radical Agenda audience, of course.
Yesterday on the other hand, we saw what I suspect is a new level of anti-intellectualism coming from the Left. As President Trump prepared to deliver an address to the nation from the Oval Office, those who hate the truth scrambled to deal with the inevitable fallout.
There was at first some debate as to whether the TV networks would even carry the address. The three major broadcast news networks — NBC, ABC and CBS — all took time to “deliberate” the subject on Monday. Many on Twitter called for the networks to opt against airing the speech. Arguing from a precedent set in 2014, when they passed on a speech made on immigration by then President Barack Obama that was considered to be too partisan for national broadcast, these users suggested that the President was not entitled to free airtime for his “racist” propaganda.
Charlie Sykes, an MSNBC contributor and Never Trump Republican, floated the idea of airing the speech on a 10-minute delay, giving the networks time to mine the address for newsy nuggets and fact-check some of the president’s claims. “Since Trump has rewritten the rules, the networks should, too,” he said. “The president isn’t entitled to free air time. He needs to earn it. And, since he’s abused it so many times, he doesn’t deserve the benefit of the doubt.”
The networks all eventually gave in and delivered the message to the public without delay or edits, but went into overdrive pissing into the information pool before and after.
Leading up to the address, one talking head after another assured us that there was no crisis at the southern border. Forget the constant stream of propaganda in the weeks and months prior, of dead children, tear gas, human rights abuses, family separations, and all the rest. Everything was fine, and only racists thought the caravans of thousands of Hondurans and others massing at our border and doing battle with border patrol, was a thing worthy of consideration.
After the President spoke, they dutifully delivered us the thoughts of Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi. The Senate Minority Leader, and newly elected Speaker of the House, assured us that, contrary to prevailing notions of physics, walls are incapable of stopping human movement, not to mention sinful.
Outside the White House, protesters held up brightly lit and colored signs which read “Fake Crisis – No Wall” before a cooperative media apparatus anxious to agree with the falsehood.
Others simply determined to discourage the populace from hearing the President’s words in other ways. #BoycottTrumpPrimeTime trended on Twitter, with users providing an abundance of suggestions on how to cope with the 8 minutes their favorite communist propaganda feeds would be occupied by the fascist regime.
A “Mental Health Advocate” going by the name “Manda Posthumously” said “I would rather saw off my own vagina than watch Trump address the nation tonight.” Perhaps if Trump fails, MS-13 will save her the trouble by doing it with machetes.
The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) posted some alternative suggestions for people to watch which “lift up the voices of marginalized people.” The list included ten different options either airing at the same time or available on demand, lauding praise on immigrants, blacks, homosexuals, and transgender people.
Stormy Daniels, who was recently ordered to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal fees for filing a bogus lawsuit against the President, told her followers that she would be “folding laundry in [her] underwear for 8 minutes on Instagram live”.
Rashida Talib, one of the first two Muslim women elected to the US House of Representatives – who recently said of the President, “We’re gonna impeach the motherfucker” – opted to pick up a book on “The revolutionary power of women’s anger”.
This list could get kind of long, but you get the idea. The strategy of the Left these days is to simply avoid exposure to views which contradict their own. They literally cannot even make an argument anymore, because they have dedicated such tremendous effort to ignorance of the subject matter in dispute.
This is not entirely new, come to think about it. In 2015 the Huffington Post decided Trump’s campaign was a “sideshow” and opted to exclude it from their political coverage as a result. Instead putting it in their entertainment section, next to “stories on the Kardashians and The Bachelorette.” They were at some point compelled to reconsider, no later than when he became President of the United States.
One hopes a similar reckoning will be forthcoming on the immigration issue. Perhaps as more reasonable voters see that the people who hope to govern them are busily cramming fingers in their ears and screaming “NANANANANANA” at their television sets, they’ll realize that people who fear the words of an elected president, are unsuited to serve as his replacement.
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