882 Comments

I agree with almost everything in this piece and enjoy your writing as always. Nodding my head in agreement through 95% of this article is kind of sad since I am (likely?) voting Republican in November. My issue here is what a lot of the other commentators have also said - the dare I say sloppy ending to this article, where you basically say that things will go back to "normal" if we can get rid of Trump. I think that ignores how insane the Democrats and the left have been driven and how malignant the new identitarian politics have become over the past several years. As you said, the media and the left have become addicted to the outrage cycle - if Trump is gone they will simply find new people to tar and feather and completely lose their shit on.

I can't support the Dem's insane, racist agenda and I don't believe a vote for them is a vote to go back to the 90s as you seem to hope it is.

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This will be my first vote for a Republican president. I am old and it took me a long time to see how racist and Marxist and anti-American the Dems really are.

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I can concede racism on the part of the Dems, but you cannot be seriously suggesting that the republicans, an almost exclusively white party, is somehow less racist.

Marxist, please. I'd be delighted if this were even 1% true.

Anti-American? All Biden has to do once on office is kill fewer than 200,000 of our citizens and he'll be more "pro-American" than the GOP so far.

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> Anti-American? All Biden has to do once on office is kill fewer than 200,000 of our citizens and he'll be more "pro-American" than the GOP so far.

Serious question, what do you want from the man? Is he supposed to wave a magic wand or kick his heels together and the Wuhan coronavirus will disappear? Was he supposed to just order Andrew Cuomo to shut down 10 days before he did (which would probably have saved a great bulk of the lives lost)? In response to Trump's ban of travel from China, New York City officials called it "racist" and then even in early March encouraged people to ride the subways (according to a recent report, mass transit is probably the strongest vector for disease transmission); Nancy Pelosi gave a press conference urging people to visit Chinatown, San Francisco. Did these things not happen? Just today, Cuomo made some mafia-esque threat about Trump needing an army if he's coming to New York or something. Is that not exactly what would have happened had Trump had a much more authoritarian response to this crisis than what he did?

This is the exact error Matt points out in the essay, by the way. You can't take the genuine failures of Trump's response to COVID (mostly relating to a lack of simple, consistent messaging about the nature of the threat and some reassurance that a steady hand was guiding the ship). If Democrats and the Left criticized Trump for that, they'd probably be set up for a major victory. Instead, he "killed 200,000 of our citizens." It makes those of us reluctant, secret Trump voters that much more at ease with our decision.

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Greetings from Western Europe, where my kids have been back in school for three weeks and (in our region) there were five confirmed cases of covid-19 this month.

Even within Europe, countries that border each other had very different outcomes --- for example, Italy, France and Germany (not to mention Sweden vs. Denmark). These disparate outcomes are not random flukes --- speaking German does not alter how one's immune system responds to a virus --- so clearly public policy makes a difference.

While you can't blame every cluster, every death, every bad outcome on Trump, personally, it is manifestly true that the policies (or lack thereof) of the Trump Administration have an impact and the American outcome is much worse than other rich nations.

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Also, as I noted, the US is a federation. Each state bears primary responsibility for setting policy except for certain things like the military or trade. And the states with the worst case fatality rates have Democrat governments. Again, Trump made mistakes, but statements that any Democrat would have done much better are somewhere between unpersuasive and bullshit.

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You make a lot of good points here. And many people who criticize Trump's response don't address or consider the issue of American culture. Even if we had Merkel, I would wager the American outcome would be vastly different than Germany's simply because of the ingrained American belief in personal liberties. Even if Trump advocated total strict lockdown for 8 weeks starting in March with the national guard delivering food to peoples homes from nearby grocery stores (a politically unviable move for hime to make as you assert) would it have worked? I'm dubious.

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Germany is also a federation. San Marino and the Vatican are different countries embedded in Italy, which itself is a loose collection of states. Switzerland is a federation. Catalonia is an independent state within Spain. Friesland is an independent state within The Netherlands. Scotland, Wales, England and Northern Ireland are part of a federation... the entire EU is a collection of sovereign states.

In every one of those cases, the central government used its tremendous resources to produce guides for the state and local governments to adapt their own needs. (With the possible exception of the UK.) The EU mobilized economic measures within the Eurozone that were passed through to individual member states to deploy locally.

The Trump Administration produced nothing but chaos and competing narratives and pitted states against each other. That was their decision. Post hoc arguments about federalism are just that --- there was no coherent policy from the administration, only blame-shifting.

You seem to have your mind made up, as have I and that is our right --- but for the benefit of anyone reading this thread, case fatality rate is a useless metric. It measure deaths as a function of confirmed cases, which are skewed by factors like when an outbreak occurs, since therapeutics increase in efficacy over time, preventative measures like testing and contact tracing come online later, vulnerable populations are identified, an outbreak in the middle of flu season increases co-morbidity rates, etc. All of the metrics are meaningless when not expressed as a rolling average; New York will have the highest cumulative rate no matter what simple because it was the first hot spot.

People arguing in bad faith (which I am absolutely not accusing you of!) like to conflate metrics that are used in the wake of a pandemic to characterize (like case fatality rates, which become useful in retrospect, when deaths are no longer occurring and we have accurate reporting) with metrics that are useful during a pandemic because they can cherry-pick numbers to serve an existing, politically expedient narrative.

The more meaningful metrics are in hospitalization rates because those directly reflect the impact on local resources and the positive test rate, which gives information about the replication rate. The replication rate is, ultimately, the only measure that matters because only collective action stemming from public policy (and competent leadership) can push it below unity and a pandemic can only end when that situation is sustained. But you cannot measure it directly during a pandemic, so you have to rely on proxies like rolling averages of hospitalizations and positive test rates.

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I mean, the top three are run by Democrats, but the next three are run by Republicans. It has nothing to do with someone's party affiliation. It has only to do with the population density of your cities and the timing of when it hit. New York City will forever and always be hit the hardest by any epidemic or pandemic (as it was in 1918) because of the structure of the city. Prior to mid-March, I hadn't been six feet from another human being in five years.

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Oh, apparently half of my comment didn't post. The case fatality rates in Western Europe are much higher than those in America, but they are all in the same range of one another. France, the Netherlands, Belgium, the UK and Sweden are all near one another. (This is a decent summary table https://www.realclearpolitics.com/coronavirus/)

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"And the states with the worst case fatality rates have Democrat governments."

Even if this weren't true, it would still mean the same thing: people need to hold their local governments, regardless of party, responsible for their response. From governors and mayors to the people who appointed the administrators in the health department. And--god forbid--we honestly look at and talk about the worst policies of those governments with the highest death rates, such as requiring nursing homes to take actively contagious patients without quarantine or separation--mostly because that's what the insurance companies (or state Medicaid administrators) wanted. Which again is local and at least semi-corporate.

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This simply isn’t true. California and NY have Democratic governors and were the first to get hit with the virus, so, yes, with no federal policy in place to help, they had alot of cases, but also good success in curbing it. NY continues to do well, while California’s Governor, unfortunately, gave into pressure, opening too early. Georgia, Arizona, FL, TX, ND, just to name a few that were overwhelmed, all have Republican governors. Mass and MD also have Republican governors and did well, only because they refused to follow Trump’s lead. Where do you get your information?

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Public policy makes a difference, but so does the infection vector. Germany's (and Austria's) infection vector were a bunch of young people at a ski lodge who later went to a rock concert. The disease proliferated around the young segments of the population primarily, making public policy relatively simple: Board up nursing homes until the threat was over. To Merkel's credit, she did just that.

Contrast that to Italy's patient zero: An older man who got on a bus headed to a football stadium. Much wider age range, much larger infection vector in general. Small wonder Italy had more and worse cases than Germany! And how would you construct public policy for that?

Contrast both of those vectors to *America's* patient zero: An Iranian man walking around Midtown in Manhattan for four whole days before being hospitalized. International city, huge crowds, and a staggering vector. How do you create public policy for that? Especially if the government with patient zero refuses to cooperate? Because Cuomo and De Blasio refused until the crisis couldn't be ignored.

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As a fellow European, I'll let you know the world ranking of EU countries with more deaths per 1 mil. population than the US:

1. San Marino (1237) 3. Belgium (853) 4. Andorra (686) 5. Spain (625) 6. UK (611) 8. Italy (587) .... 10. USA (577)

Now please exit the scene. The orange man bad seats are that way ->

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Yes the Orange Man is bad. China has a much larger population and has about 5000 deaths and Russia with a population of about half the US is at 18000 deaths. Even Indonesia and India are doing far better than we are, and their populations are enormous.

We can play this dumb game all day, or you can just concede the obvious point which is also a matter of the recorded historical record: Orange Man pretended the virus was no big deal, didn't listen to his health officials, and as a result tens of thousands of Americans are needlessly dead. Thems the fucking facts.

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I don't know how you could say that when each of the five countries you listed had public policies ranging from "total lockdown" to "nothing." How do we know which one works?

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Certainly, policy (such as the CDC's) regarding what's counted as a COVID death can lead to the appearance of things being worse than perhaps they factually are, but much of the public policy is up to the states and the governors, which is why New York and New Jersey were like a 1/3rd of the COVID cases and deaths. Still, good as thing to vote on as anything. But if folks hold the president responsible then they REALLY need to hold their local politicians accountable.

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Unfortunately, pandemics are more complicated Than this snapshot in time. Many of those countries who successfully suppressed a first wave will get hammered with the second. That’s just how it goes. And the fact is, whether anyone wants to hear it or not, in the USA, the president has little power to manage a pandemic. The decisions to close are made by mayors and governors. The president cannot shut the country down. That’s just not how it works.

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So obvious, R C, but Trump supporters don't want to see what is in front of their eyes, because their reasons for supporting Trump are emotional, not logical. See, for example, https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/sep/02/donald-trump-strategy-republican-national-convention

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If you want to convince people that they should not do something they want to do, may I suggest that psychoanalyzing them as being less than human, or at least less competent of a human than you, is a particularly unpersuasive strategy. Passive aggression makes it doubly so. Just a thought.

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As an American I love hearing the clarity with which Europeans asses our CHAOS SPHERE.

LONG LIVE BAUDRILLARD!

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Five for the whole month? Almost seems like I should move there! 😀

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I don't believe they would let you in. Letting in a bunch of foreigners who want to escape COVID is an excellent way to accidentally let in a few asymptomatic carriers and then all your efforts are shot to hell.

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Oh, right, my substack comment hath driven thee to vote for the tyrant-dummy in office, shame upon me! No, pal, your voting choice is your own, and you will have to live with it. Is Biden a wonderful alternative? No. But he is obviously preferable to vile elitest scumbag moron opportunist sociopath fraud currently destroying our culture and our form of government -- which is decidedly Taibbi's point here. And do read a bit of actual history on covid and Trump. If he'd wanted to, he could have done what Germany, New Zealand, Korea and dozens of other countries did which successfully repressed the outbreak: namely, he could have listened to his health advisors, acted quickly to lockdown the nation for 2-3 months in January (not March, which as too late) then immediately funded massive PPE, testing, tracing, and unemployment programs to keep people from having to work. Instead he constantly pretended the virus was no big deal and even said repeatedly that it would "just go away one day, like magic." Had he acted swiftly like a real man and taken care of business, even just ordered a full lockdown one week earlier, he'd have saved tens of thousands of American lives. Are the Dems faultless in all this? Of course not. But do not pretend that Hillary Clinton wouldn't have been more decisive and effective in her response. And trust me, I despise the Clintons and everything they stand for, but are they and the Bidens preferable to this insanity? Obviously they are.

You vote as you wish, but don't wine to me about being hectored by self rightous Dems when all we've been subjected to for four straight fucking years is winey hectoring self righteous lying rich fucks telling us none of this is really happening while enriching their literal family members as the nation descends into riots and chaos. Fuck the Dems for abandoning working people and being weak and spineless, but fuck the Trumpistas harder for being so sociopathic and illogical as to pretend that Trump is somehow the better option.

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You're telling me that if the big bad cheeto fascist imposed a nationwide lockdown back in January, you would have been fine with it? This is back when De Blasio and Pelosi were telling people to go about their normal lives. This is back when Vox was saying it was just like the flu and calling people racist who were worried it would get worse. This is back when Fauci was lying to all of us about the necessity of masks. Trump hasn't been great, but I don't think it would have made a damn bit of difference if anyone else was in the White House. In case you didn't notice, the response to this crisis has been the same as always. The top few thousand richest people got astronomical amounts of free money within a few days with no questions asked. The rest of us got some scraps after weeks of kicking and screaming about how much it will cost.

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Well, yes, I supported a full federal lockdown of 8-10 weeks. Obviously. And Vox (which I don't read or love at all) was merely pointing out how pandemics often get tied up with racism, in this case anti-Asian racism. Which was true and continues to be true.

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I think you're giving yourself a little too much credit for influencing how I vote. 😁 Also, I hope you're okay. I'm sensing some pretty tense vibes.

It's a bit pointless to argue about counterfactuals like Hillary being in office, but I'll indulge you. I have seen zero evidence that would indicate the CDC or FDA or any other agency would have improved any metric one iota. They all seem generically incompetent and sclerotic, regardless of who's president. (This is the great Progressive world we live in, after all, where the Experts Rule the Earth.)

And since we're playing counterfactuals (I already gave real examples of this kind of reactive tendency), I also submit that the nature of the #Resistance being what it is, the Democrats and the Elite Left would immediately react to it by negating whatever Trump had done. If Trump had tried to order a lockdown, Cuomo may have gone to court to get an injunction (since Trump lacks such power to do any such thing, unlike most state governors). We'd see articles in Jezebel and Teen Vogue about Gretchen Whitmer with such thought-provoking arguments as "YASSSSSSS KWEEN!!!" Nevertheless, I am glad that we agree about the poor messaging. Leading with that might be more persuasive to others in the future.

I guess maybe now I'll go wine - with a glass - and relax for the rest of the evening. Also, I prefer that fucking involving me happens with my consent and that of my partner, if it's not too much trouble.

You seem really upset, but I hope you know life will go on. This, too, shall pass.

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Okay, dude. Seriously? The whole point of quarantining for a month was so that a federal plan could be put in place, i.e. contact tracing etc. Instead, trump decided to do nothing and put the onus on every governor, which is useless when every governor has their own plan contingent on what their constituents want. You can do the whole,”IF Trump had done this, then liberals would’ve reacted THIS way,” if you want, but that’s pointless. Because Trump didn’t do shit. His federal government didn’t do shit. It’s still, six months later, a shitshow. You “submit” how people would’ve reacted if Trump had taken just a little bit of action re: corononavirus? Sweet. Nice submission. Unfortunately, we never got a chance to see what would’ve happened. Because your boy dropped the ball.

Also, Teen Vogue? Really? Cool, good to see where your mind’s at.

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I bet you think you're fascinating. Best of luck.

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Bruh, New Zealand got a second spike so hard when they reopened they're delaying their election.

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Bruh, New Zealand has had to date 23 total deaths and around 1700 total confirmed cases.

Here in the US we're well past 6 million cases and quickly approaching 200,000 deaths.

Do you see the difference there?

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Ummmm ... Germany and New Zealand did not lock down in January. They locked down in March, same time as America. Korea never locked down.

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It was America that never locked down. We did a state by state thing, which did nothing but move the outbreaks around the country. Then many states opened up too soon, exacerbating the problem. Germany and NZ did nationwide enforced lockdowns.

And you are misrepresenting Korea's response:

https://www.csis.org/analysis/timeline-south-koreas-response-covid-19

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If Trump had at least pretended to be governing/representing the entire country and not just his base, he might have become the most popular president in modern history. That’s what he could have done. He has from day one and continues to now stir shit up for no real reason. I hold out hope that a Trump with no worries about being re-elected does just this.

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This is true......buuuuut those not sure n his base were not prepared to give him the courtesy of a congressional olive branch/attempt at bipartisan cooperation. It was #resistance/impeach/Russia gate from day 1-and anyone with any bit of human experience n personal interaction could guess how a normal politician might respond, let alone an egomaniac twitter holic TV celebrity with no governmental experience ever.

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If Trump could channel his personality shown from the SOTU this year or even from his RNC speech, he'd be polling in the 50s. SOTU Trump without things like giving Limbaugh the Medal of Freedom would make him extremely popular. Trump minus the tweeting would get him around 50%. That could translate into enormous political power, and he seems constitutionally incapable of getting disciplined to make it happen.

The only argument for it is that his base likes it and he can't get his message out through the media. It's true that the media is running area denial operations for his message, but the base dislikes the tweets just as much as any other normal person.

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That gets at exactly what Matt is writing about and why the Trump Era sucks and needs to end.

His approach is and has been since the 2016 primaries to throw spaghetti at the wall and see what sticks well enough to get him through the next news cycle. There is no policy, no vision, no plan, no long-term thinking, no conviction --- only sales pitches.

During the 2016 campaign he promised to close the carried interest loophole and raise capital gains taxes, claiming "I know these people and I know what they get away with." The same day he went on Fox to promise tax cuts for all. He promised better, cheaper health care and universal coverage for everyone. He also promised to repeal Obamacare. He literally tells us that he is for protections against preexisting conditions at the same time his own administration is suing to end those protections. He tells us that we should reelect him so that he can use his awesome power to crush dissent and restore order, but that he is powerless against a sinister deep state that keeps enacting all these horrible policies and suing to end protections for preexisting conditions.

At his conventions, he tosses out random brain-farts and then measures their appeal based on applause. Whatever gets the largest applause the most consistently is turned into "policy" in that he demands that someone make it happen and fires people until someone is willing to break the law for him.

What you say is very true, but not just his personality show from SOTU; if you stitched together all the contradictory things he's said and all the trial balloons he's floated, he would appeal to the entire electorate at once. But, of course, that is how sales pitches work, not how presidents work and it is why his polling is so consistent --- either you sift through what he says to find what you agree with and rationalize the rest away or you sift through what he says to find the stuff you disagree with and rationalize the rest away. This is where oddly prescient statements like "take him seriously, but not literally" come from. This is why the comments here oscillate between "Trump is savior of America and no president could have done better" and "Trump is going to end America as we know it and is the worst president in the history of the multiverse."

The man will say literally anything if he thinks you want to hear it; anything to get what he wants; his amorality and transnational approach to life truly makes him the greatest salesman of all time.

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So you are saying that the "genuine failures of Trump's response to COVID", specifically "a lack of simple, consistent messaging about the nature of the threat and some reassurance that a steady hand was guiding the ship" are outweighed by the fact that Biden, in your sole judgement, erred in stating his objection in terms which you disliked? Can't you see how odd that sounds? You are a secret Trump voter who feels better because you think Biden mis-stated an objection which you assert to be valid? To my ears that sounds absurd, an obvious rationalization for something you know is wrong -- voting for Trump -- otherwise why a secret? Your motive are emotional, not logical. You want to vote for Trump without logical reasons. What I want to know is, what kind of emotional reaction do you have to Trump and to Biden? Because clearly that is that factor that makes you consider taking the highly destructive step of voting for Donald Trump in 2020.

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No, I don't accept your premise.

Look, if someone is going to claim anyone "killed" 200k people, as in actively ended their lives, I expect receipts. Instead, we're supposed to believe that so many people were actively murdered because some random assortment of government bureaucrats were fired and/or Trump hurt their feelings, or that Trump listened to certain experts (like Fauci) over others, or that one of the dozen contradictory government "plans" was not followed. It's utter bullshit. Fox News' endless "Benghazi" nonsense parade was a much tighter argument than even this is. I mean, hell, even saying that Cuomo killed 25k people or whatever because of the nursing home thing would be bullshit.

While I don't owe you an explanation for my decision when you clearly are arguing in bad faith and have made up your mind about me (a subject in which I am clearly more knowledgable), I'll play your game. Before I do, though, are you clairvoyant? You claim to read my mind and impute motives just based on some arbitrary Internet comments.

To answer your question, logos, pathos and ethos were the three guiding modes of persuasion that led me to reluctantly vote Trump. Until about four weeks ago, I had decided not to vote. The Israel-UAE peace deal was the thing that made me change my mind. Biden was never really an option, based on his record, and now his ensuing senility. And you may dislike the Ukraine thing (I thought what Trump did was utter sleaze whether or not the Dems did the same thing or worse to him with Russiagate), but it did really demonstrate a level of corruption that I didn't realize Biden was involved in. But the biggest reason I can't vote for any Democrat is their association with the media and academia, which are the fuel for this woke madness sweeping our nation. The Obama administration even explicitly contributed to it in the mid-2010s when the Education Department sent out so-called "Dear Colleague" letters to universities in order to e.g. deprive students of due process rights in hearings or make various "diversity and inclusion" requirements. I can't support it.

Why am I a "secret" Trump voter? Because there's this thing called Cancel Culture. An awesome writer named Matt Taibbi has written about it over the past few months.

I'll be honest, though: you sound like the one whose "motive are emotional, not logical," not me. I'm not the one who is talking about the "highly destructive step of voting for Donald Trump." We've had him for almost four years, we're still here (and 2020 has really tested that), life has gone on. If he's so destructive, he'd have destroyed some things by now.

And, besides, emotions aren't necessarily harmful if they're properly checked by logical reasoning and attempts to find ways where your emotions are misleading you. This has been known going back to Aristotle. I know what I've done to evaluate claims critically, and so I have no problem with my decision. I would only ask that you hold yourself to the same standard you appear to hold me to.

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I like where you are coming from and I am in the same boat. The left is illiberal to me. And beyond that I look to the arguments conservatives, the new ones, have been making about democrat run cities. if they have had the same leadership for decades and the problems they face just get worse, shouldn't the implemented solutions be changed? It's not conservative or liberal in my mind to err on the side of "well, this hasn't work, lets do something knew."

I'll defer to the new, less religious, more classically liberal yet gun-toating freedom loving conservatives over the racist nontheistic religion adopting left any day.

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Feel free to e-mail me, i'd like to get in contact with more people that are much better communicators about whats going on than I am. josephcaskey4@gmail

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Thank you for a thoughtful and searching reply. I am arguing in good faith, which I take to mean I am not intentionally writing anything that is false or trying to hide my motives or ideas. I am seeking a real exchange of views.

You wrote that "the biggest reason I can't vote for any Democrat is their association with the media and academia, which are the fuel for this woke madness sweeping our nation."

I do not use the word "woke" and I do not exactly understand what it is supposed to mean. Actually I'm inclined to think "woke" is a meaningless label of some kind being used by certain young people. I do not think that use of the word is likely to last very long as it does not seem to make any sense.

I am not affiliated with any media organization, now or in the past. I did attend a college but did not finish my college degree. However I was able to work as an electronic engineer and computer programmer, with moderate success. I am now retired and live with my wife in New Jersey.

Would you be willing to explain your concern about "woke madness"? Please believe me that I do not understand what it is that you are so worried about.

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I think the majority of commenters here are right-wingers anyway. Matt's usual subject matter, although I largely agree with him, attracted a lot of right-wingers to this site. You're seeing this reflected in the comments.

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Well they seem to be what I might call thoughtful right-wingers. I'm not sure just how that works out.

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After I retired I went back to the university. Multiculturalism, Diversity-Equity-Inclusion, and the offspring - BLM, Critical Race Theory - these are all racist, neo-Marxists, and un-American.

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I see this where I work. The black people who work here have very specific, reasonable asks about how to better things. However, the "academics" brought in to promote diversity and inclusion sound extremely cult-like.

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YES! How come Asians have none of these problems? Because they believe in the family unit. Only 11% illegitimacy for Blacks it's 69% illegitimacy. Their children need FATHERS instead of street THUGS!

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To which I can only note that America has a long history of deliberately destroying Black families to limit their capacity for banding together in an uprising. To cap it off, the Civil Rights movement was followed by a "Great Society" whose architect couldn't help observing how with any luck it would lock Blacks into voting Democrat to maintain benefits as opposed to seeking a way to make up for centuries of suppressed capital formation so that Blacks would be on a more even footing with whites in seeking financial independence.

In other words, you're absolutely right about why Asians have an advantage. The problem is remedying the damage America did to the formation of the Black family as an institution. We've got generations of damage to unmake.

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You and Al might find Matt’s piece on academics vs administrators at universities interesting. I agree with the piece in a nuanced way that the administrators treated the students/young adults as customers (helicopter moms/dads who insured their kids won participation trophies, had no allowance but instead a credit card, seldom faced adversity/chores, learned second languages from nanny’s, etc). Then in that over administered environment kids from varying different sociodynamic backgrounds arrive on campus and every notion they have is “valid” since the customer is always right. These kids graduate and, well, we’re kind of fucked. I’ve regrettably had to hire a few and it’s been (with a few exceptions who are wonderful) a total shit-show. I blame the shitty parents of my generation who wanted to be friends rather than walk the talk and have difficult discussions.

And then of course there are the universities, whose economic model is bankrupt for all but the top and the bottom. We will all be better off when the crappy minor/middle universities offering quasi-liberal arts degrees are gone. They are akin to modern slavery with their pushing tuition up (and student loans) to support football and salad bars with negligible economics opportunities for all but a few main degrees plans. Geez can we declare the “college for all” era over already?

Rant over but this topic chaps me (not at people discussing but at the mid-level universities and the crappy parents foisting their progeny on the world).

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Higher education is seeming more and more like a bad deal all around, even to the point of undermining the values that enabled America to be .... well, great.

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It's racialist and identitarian, not Marxist. Bring up class to these people and you quickly see there's nothing close to Marxist about them.

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Identity and power replace class and power in the neo-Marxist schema. It's not dissimilar to how extreme nationalism and national power replaced class in Fascism. Mussolini was a lifelong Marxist and even ran the Second International-era Italian Socialist Party newspaper Avanti!, but became disillusioned with the lack of a pan-national class uprising during WWI, and he ultimately pivoted to embracing nationalism as a way to turn the Wheel of History.

Neo-Marxism emerged because academic and activist Leftists in the 60s and 70s were extremely embarrassed by Khrushchev's Secret Speech and Solzhenitsyn's Gulag Archipelago. The New Left then emerged as a fusion of civil rights with the co-emerging critical theory along with the bulk of the power struggle aspects of Marxism.

Sure, the adherents of these things aren't quoting Das Kapital or the Communist Manifesto, but they have a pretty solid genealogy chart back to Marx.

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I take your point about its genesis, but I think the key word is "replace." If you take out a fundamental piece of something (class in the case of Marxism), it's not that thing anymore. And it's not a "new" version of that thing, either. It's something else.

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They are expressly Marxist. One of the co-founders of BLM said, "We are Marxist-trained," and that is their world view. The talk about reparations, if you listen past the slogans, goes to redistribution of wealth and the END of private property. Wake. Up.

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They can type whatever word they want on one website but a race essentialist movement can not be Marxist, period.

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Here here...wake up to the Woke Joke!

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Cultural Marxism...not classical Marxism. Hegemony of Antonio Gramsci. Cultural Structures create oppression. The oppressors were privileged = racists at BIRTH. The oppressed are VICTIMS since BIRTH. The greater the inter-sectionality of the VICTIM, the greater the moral authority. Racists are BORN without any MORAL DIGNITY and can only redeem their humanity through retraining of the culture. Racist Free Speech is canceled / bullied / head bashed / Thought controlled straight from 1984 2 + 2 = 5. Recognize any of this....

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Their attitudes and tactics are definitely Maoist, if not Marxist. Maoism is a whole ‘ nother level of crazy from regular Marxism. Where would you rather be in 1970-Cuba or China?

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Just take our children and place them in the CCP schools. Dreamy!

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Here here...which is the gloss of Antonio Gramsci...to fix Classic Marxism.

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I think the ideological rot started in the universities and then expanded to the media and then the general culture.

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Yes. Started in the 60s. They latched on to Foucault, deconstruction, post-modernism. Rejected the Western canon. They started teaching this upside-down world to students. You want to read how the social justice movement happened, how they have created an entirely new epistomological model, lexicon, which rejects objectivity and facts in favor of "narratives" (e.g. "hands up don't shoot"--grand jury witnesses say it never happened, but that's OK, it's a "narrative"), go to newdiscourses.com and get clued in.

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I have been teaching at a university for 21 years. I can probably count on one hand the number of colleagues I have had who care about working-class people. Those who do, typically care about working-class people in the Global South. The buzzword right now is "BIPOC." If you are not black, indigenous, or a person of color in some way shape or form, your experiences do not count, unless they can be held up as exemplary of white privilege or white racist behavior. Sure, most academics are consumed by the quest to uncover ways that powerful people are oppressing powerless people. But that doesn't make them Marxists. (Heck, the 1619 Project focuses on power and oppression and if that's a Marxis endeavor, I'll eat my flip flops.) In academe today, the definition of power is ALWAYS rooted in racial hierarchy. Even feminism has become a bad word because "white feminism!" Most academics lack the interest and/or the conceptual framework to engage in any type of analysis that can be called Marxist. If they did, they'd have to confront their own complicity in the class system that is the modern, corporate university.

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Yes. The French connection. Which the French call American. But people who keep calling white fragility Marxist are going to keep sounding insane. Regardless of their convoluted and dishonest academic parentage, you’re never going to sell wokies who center race and dismiss old leftism as class reductionism as communists. Frankly we need some class centered politics right now.

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Too many people missed what the 'critical' in critical thinking means and instead of evaluating/analysing, are disaproving and judging. Quite harshly, too. Unable to identify the good in anything, only able to identify the bad.

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You know "multiculturalism" and "diversity-equity-inclusion" are not essentially racial concepts right? You can, for example, have a multicultural, inclusive society that is all one race. Corporate media propaganda is designed to make us confuse the humanity of our fellow citizens with liberal fascism of the ruling elite. So asking that police treat people like human beings - and that is what BLM is fundamentally about (not race) - is very intentionally misrepresented as an ideological imposition. Democrats are right-wing liberals that have no business calling themselves leftists. Marx despised liberals even more than Republicans seem to - they are the famed "bourgeois" you know. And socialism is not a political ideology about using the state to oppress individual liberty, its an economic theory about distributing goods - another common propaganda tool that uses fear to manipulate how we interpret the world around us and, ultimately, treat each other. We can do better than this guys.

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The most important thing you said here, that BLM is essentially about treating people like human beings, is devastatingly wrong. BLM are not classical liberals. They utterly reject liberalism. They expressly embrace Marxism.

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I am all for police reform, especially a de-militarization of weapons, tactics, and mindset. However, you are wrong about BLM - if it were merely asking that police treat people like human beings, they would not insist that saying "all lives matter" is racist - and people have lost their jobs for saying those words.

BLM's website shows they are, in fact, enemies of capitalism and of the family, trained in Marxism, and very, very anti-white.

Socialism is, indeed, an economic concept - but its implementation somehow seems alsways to end with the state supressing individual liberty, as it requires forcible taking of the products of work precisely to give them to those who did not produce them.

If you are not free to use what your work has produced, you are not free.

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I didn't mean to appear supportive of the organization Black Lives Matter, which has conflated a noble cause, fighting racism,with an ignoble one. I said BLM was solipsistic and sucked up the oxygen for everything and everyone else, promoted dehumanizing racial themes, were revolutionaries attacking reason, science, individual rights, private property, the freedom to speak our minds. I didn't the latter directly but thought it had been clear what I meant.Much of the ideology is impenetrably stupid and hateful. The woman who called CNN was not BLM and I do empathize with the law-abiding blacks, the human casualties of the BLM revolution, left behind to deal with the mayhem of riots, shoot outs and abolishing police.

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Multiculturalism and diversity-equity-inclusion aren't necessarily racial concepts. But as practiced by university courses, they have unfortunately become so.

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Yes, that is my point. I went to a program in community mental health counseling and it is a requirement that multiculturalism be integrated into every class as per the credentialing authorities. Concepts like "white privilege" are essentially racist. Concepts like "microagression" appear designed to give rise to racial resentment against white people. Diversity training appears to me to be a human rights violation where whites are re-educated into a correct way of thinking. This ideology is pervasive throughout even to the point that prospective faculty are selected based on their adherence to the ideology. Rather than the class dynamic of Marxism, we now have the oppressor-victimhood dynamic. So, this is a neo-Marxism or Marxism light. The result is the undermining of American society and liberal culture - whether intentional or not.

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Who cares what Marx thought.

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Marx was a *political* economist. As in, he studied (though I use the term loosely) the influence of political arrangements on the production and distribution of goods. Ultimately, I either own the product of my labor or someone else does. Any system in which the product of my labor is under the control of someone besides me thus has an obvious implication on my individual liberty. That doesn't mean that socialists can't work toward trying to reduce power imbalances or defining the scope and limitations of property rights in order to get a more equitable distribution of goods. It's just that socialists (and especially Marxists) seem utterly uninterested in doing that kind of work; only (some) liberals do, which is unsurprising given the whole "liberty"-"liberal" thing. Marxists seem to be mostly interested in debating the finer points of of Marx's thoughts or just pushing talking points that make Marxism seem like less of a totalitarian ideology than it is.

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I have been teaching at a university for 21 years. I can probably count on one hand the number of colleagues I have had who care about working-class people. Those who do, typically care about working-class people in the Global South. The buzzword right now is "BIPOC." If you are not black, indigenous, or a person of color in some way shape or form, your experiences do not count, unless they can be held up as exemplary of white privilege or white racist behavior. Sure, most academics are consumed by the quest to uncover ways that powerful people are oppressing powerless people. But that doesn't make them Marxists. (Heck, the 1619 Project focuses on power and oppression and if that's a Marxis endeavor, I'll eat my flip flops.) In academe today, the definition of power is ALWAYS rooted in racial hierarchy. Even feminism has become a bad word because "white feminism!" Most academics lack the interest and/or the conceptual framework to engage in any type of analysis that can be called Marxist. If they did, they'd have to confront their own complicity in the class system that is the modern, corporate university.

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I have been teaching at a university for 21 years. I can probably count on one hand the number of colleagues I have had who care about working-class people. Those who do, typically care about working-class people in the Global South. The buzzword right now is "BIPOC." If you are not black, indigenous, or a person of color in some way shape or form, your experiences do not count, unless they can be held up as exemplary of white privilege or white racist behavior. Sure, most academics are consumed by the quest to uncover ways that powerful people are oppressing powerless people. But that doesn't make them Marxists. (Heck, the 1619 Project focuses on power and oppression and if that's a Marxis endeavor, I'll eat my flip flops.) In academe today, the definition of power is ALWAYS rooted in racial hierarchy. Even feminism has become a bad word because "white feminism!" Most academics lack the interest and/or the conceptual framework to engage in any type of analysis that can be called Marxist. If they did, they'd have to confront their own complicity in the class system that is the modern, corporate university.

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Exactly what is Marxist about any of these ? Why is everything Marxist ? That's a very lazy catch all label that isn't at all helpful.

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99% of the people who parrot the "Marxist" line have no clue what it means. I'm pretty sure none of them have read Das Kapital lately. And if the academics and consultants were Marxist they wouldn't be charging huge consulting fees. They'd be 'sharing' what they know.

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I've stumped a few by asking how all this inequality and fraud by the elite is Marxist. I guess the elite are going to steal everything and then split it all up with us equally after the fact or something.

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I think post-modernists have attempted to construct an anti-thesis to modernity and see Marx as post-modernist and so latched onto the name at least. There is a lot of debate going on in some political-philosophical areas regarding whether Marx was post-modernist or whether he was in reality a modernist. It is an interesting debate at arms length which is all my post-grad work in Marx encourages me to immerse myself in.

My sense of him is that he had an incredibly expansive mind that excluded very little possibility or potential and that he was not lacking in the odd flurry of whimsy. Also have some areas of agreement with the English philosopher who theorized that Marx might have been dabbling in theodicy and thought there was some odds-on chance that the revolution could produce the paradise. And if that should happen, the misery and suffering of the ages might be seen as justified.

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Anyone that writes so much they get boils on their butt is going to cover a lot of ground and there's no way anyone could be get everything right looking forward from almost 150 years ago.

The elite hate Marx's ideas because it threatens their claim of being superior and God like.

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This seems relevant...and clearly stated:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DdlNIJB9ZVU

Why are mathematicians saying 2+2 doesn’t necessarily equal 4? Why are protestors toppling statues of not only slave owners but also abolitionists? Why were executives at a leading nuclear research lab in America sent to mandatory training that described “focus on hard work” and “striving toward success” as problematic aspects of white male culture?

In this episode, James Lindsay joins us for a deep dive into what’s going on in our culture today. With Helen Pluckrose, he co-wrote “Cynical Theories: How Activist Scholarship Made Everything about Race, Gender, and Identity―and Why This Harms Everybody.”

This is American Thought Leaders 🇺🇸, and I’m Jan Jekielek.

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The entire Democrat party has been a vocal supporter of BLM. Their website states loud and clear that they’re Marxists. Many Democrats, including members of Biden’s campaign, have actually bailed out BLM rioters and thugs. I’d say it’s much more than "1% true".

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If you're going to insist on being this misinformed, I cannot help you. Trump has done nothing but help and support and bail out thugs. The first thing you need to do is actually read Marx, then you might understand that a leaderless anti-racist, anti-police brutality movement that makes zero class-based claims has little to do with Marxism. As for the Dems, has their aggressive support of Trump's judicial picks been particularly Marxist, or their warmongering in the Mideast, or perhaps Obama's attempt to slash and privatize social security was a coup for the Commies? Don't be absurd.

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BLM founder members themselves claimed they are Marxist. And look at the Antifa emblem. I see anarchist and communist flags entwined. Even the name comes from the old German Communist party.

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BLM has never said they are a Marxist movement. Again, if you've read Marx you'd know that the movement has little to do with class-based claims or workers controlling the means of production. It's not relevant to their purely antiracist goals at all. And the name Antifa comes from "ANTI FAscist." And if they're antifascist, I wonder where that puts those who are anti-anti-fascist? Perhaps pro-fascust is the right term? Jees, I dunno.

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None of what I said is a lie. So how am I misinformed? The President can’t afford a Kent State right now, but after he’s re-elected he can deploy the Guard. And I hope they put the BLM and Antifa thugs you’re sticking up for in the fucking ground, en masse.

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So you're saying you don't like US foreign policy being perpetrated in the US ? That's all this is and it isn't the first time and it isn't only the democrats that do it. You may want to try and get around the red team/blue team false paradigm and get a grasp on the fact you live in a plutocracy and have for a very long time.

You can't vote your way out of this.

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What you've articulated here is literal totalitarian fascism. "Put them in the ground" means murder/silence your critics and end free expression and public protest on principle. Just so you know. If you don't like freedom and free expression in America, please move to Brazil or North Korea or some other totalitarian state where you can be happy.

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The Mid-east has more peace now than during Obama's administration. North Korea is behaving it's self as they have not tested a NUKE since 2017.

No new wars..... like training and arming Syrian Rebels and sending US troops to Syria and 33,000 troops to Afghanistan.

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But what are the policies that Sleepy Joe and Creepy Kamala endorse? Senator from MBNA and freakin' author of the crime bill! Senator "Cut Medicare!", Senator "tough on crime", Senator "Lock them up!" If you want to vote for an anti-Marxist candidate, Joe's your man!

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Generalities get troublesome. Real, legit Marxists (as much as any one can be one) are growing in power in the Democratic party. Although keep in mind, once in power, most Marxists tend to be less principled (and certainly less about the people) and more about protecting their own interests. Because humans.

The problem some people have with the left specifically, and the Dems to the degree their skewing left, is the nu-racism of critical race theory which is essentially a form of virulent identitarianism that lauds identifying primarily or only as a member of a particular ethnicity (and sometimes other aggrieved class), and embraces race-based discrimination at all levels, and even segregation, so long as these things are done for the "right" reasons. I will take the GOPs lack of outreach to minority communities or real empathy with the issues minority communities over that.

Anti-American is too broad a term to be useful. There are a lot of folks on the left who want to re-write history, deconstruct the founding, either judge the whole of history by the context of this very moment or reframe or censor history based on current needs, as they judge them. This isn't necessarily the Democrats as a whole, but certainly this reinterpretation of history is getting more traction on the left.

In regards to killing 200k of our citizens--that seems to have causality wrong. In what circumstance is Trump causally responsible for COVID-19? Many of the decisions that resulted in the largest death tolls were the result of governors and their policies (often in response to the demands of insurers, but let's not go too far down that rabbit hole). And many of the deaths were deaths that would have happened pretty much no matter who was president, governor, or mayor. In any case, policy would be set by folks like Birx and Fauci--either of whom might have had a home in a Clinton or Biden administration--so as a causal chain, blaming the president for pandemic fatalities seems logically fallacious.

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Let me tell you what seems fallacious.

Believing that the chief executive of this country and his party are somehow NOT responsible for the consequences of the policies they did or did not enact during their ongoing term of office. Yet also believing that Biden and the Dems (currently only in control of the House and a minority of Governor's seats) ARE somehow responsible for the descent into protest, rioting, violence, rising criminality, and pandemic death this nation is currently experiencing (and which was not happening as of January, 2017).

https://thebulwark.com/warnings-ignored-a-timeline-of-trumps-covid-19-response/

https://www.npr.org/sections/coronavirus-live-updates/2020/05/21/860077940/u-s-could-have-saved-36-000-lives-if-social-distancing-started-1-week-earlier-st

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Since you seem to define white fragility as a leftist concept, I can’t imagine what use this discussion can have.

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The problem with Democrats is that they self-identify as better educated, more aware, and more socially engaged than Republicans. That is, Democrats by all standards should know better.

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Tyson, I think a part of your comment (republicans, an almost exclusively white party) is historically true however not accurate today. I see more African Americans, LGBTQ and Hispanic Americans from all walks in the larger-tent GOP than ever before. I also disagree with the language around excess deaths to Covid as being 'kills' attributable to government policy. In all objective data (transmission rate, fatality rate, et al), the current pandemic is most similar to the 1957-1958 flu pandemic, which killed 110,000 Americans and 1.1 million globally. It was not a political issue, in fact no lockdowns were implemented and it was handled rationally by the American government and by American citizens. I believe a lot of the current pandemic has been unnecessarily politicized by everyone involved (dems, repubs, trump, governors, mayors, etc). I will not attribute deaths to any politician, federal or local, to the disease.

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The event of the pandemic itself and consequent deaths cannot be attributed to any one factor, no. But there has been research on how US policy influenced the death rate.

https://www.npr.org/sections/coronavirus-live-updates/2020/05/21/860077940/u-s-could-have-saved-36-000-lives-if-social-distancing-started-1-week-earlier-st

Social distancing one week earlier, and 36,000 Americans would be alive. Trump was getting official warnings about the virus back in January, which he ignored. Here is a comprehensive run down of the Trump admin ignoring warnings from health officials.

https://thebulwark.com/warnings-ignored-a-timeline-of-trumps-covid-19-response/

Not all, but many of these deaths were avoidable. They were brought about by GOP intransigence, in concert with Democratic neoliberal spinelessness and unwillingness to enact bold public policy.

But aside from all this, why is it so hard for people to look to the success of other countries and see the differences in how they handled it? Why do you think it's a coincidence that the two countries with the most irresponsible far-right administrations—the US and Brazil—have the highest case and death rates right now? If Taiwan and Korea and Germany and New Zealand can have such low death rates, why can't we at least try to admit our faults and pursue a path that replicates their success? The man most responsible for how far this has gotten out of control is Donald J. Trump. He's responsible for those deaths, and I think he could even be criminally charged.

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NPR is the epitome of Leftist thinking that is intolerant of anything else.

Sweden:

Only 10% wore masks

They got COVID after US and got rid of it BEFORE US..

They had no 2nd "SURGE" and

They mostly stayed open.

Countries using Hydroxychloroquine.

Deaths per population:

Cuban .0007%.

UAE .0036%,

Turkey .007%

Russia .009% .

India .002%

Thailand .005%

Countries NOT using Hydroxychloroquine.

US deaths .04%

France .04%

England .08%

Spain .06%

Italy .05%

https://www.barrons.com/news/hydroxychloroquine-a-drug-dividing-the-world-01591006809

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I'm a leftist and I actually hate NPR. Listening to it makes my ears bleed.

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The Ds are openly courting anti-white votes and going all in white guilt for their white base.

Is this different from the alt-right trash glomming onto Trump, yes, but in greater numbers. Both approaches/groups are equally bad, but the Ds have the elite media stamp of approval.

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It doesn't have to conform point-by-point to Marx's social-political theory to be a recognizable and equally corrupt set of behavior principles that work to upset recognized economic and social structures in order to replace them in a re-distributionist way, to create a new politically invulnerable hegemony. The cultural movement here may not be strictly Marxist, but it is equally poisonous to our society, equally parasitic of the benefits of Capitalism, equally dependent upon unsanctioned systems of 'justice' that are arbitrary and for the benefit of its advocates, at the expense of its targeted enemies.

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The Democratic Party is in no way shape or form Marxist. None of its policies are remotely Marxist in any way shape or form. They are a neoliberal pro-corporate party.

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They gonna get the Corporations to pay for the subsidy of 30,000,000 unauthorized in the US? The middle class is already tapped out.

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Unlike, say, tax cuts, immigration pays for itself, especially given that there is no such thing as economic growth on the long term scale in a country with a shrinking population.

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You need to pay attention to facts:

63% Of Non-Citizens Are On Welfare

https://www.investors.com/politics/editorials/non-citizens-uninsured-welfare-census-data

34% of all welfare recipients reside in California 40% Hispanic

https://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/news/politics/sdut-welfare-capital-of-the-us-2012jul28-htmlstory.h

California spends $13,000,000,000 on Special Education: 56.8% of California Special Ed students are Hispanic.

https://www.kidsdata.org › special-needs-education-enrollment-race › table

Seeing that Hispanics are by far the largest foreign born group:

Average Household Income $51,390 to $51,450 with 2,3 kids. They are in the 12% tax bracket where they were supposed to pay $6,000. They immediately get $4,000 beck for Child Credits and another couple thousand for Earned Income Credits. What were you saying?

A growing population no longer has any economic benefit:

https://www.marketwatch.com..  

As automation takes over, manual labor becomes a bunch of dependents. How are you going to employ 70,000,000 tomato pickers?

Switzerland's population

2015 - 8,296,775

2020 - 8,654,622...... 357,800 growth in 5 years. Only 24,847 in the last 2 years.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/steveforbes/2018/12/18/switzerland-is-a-great-economic-success-why-dont-more-countries-follow-its-example/

Thanks to the RACIST CENSUS for keeping tract.

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Well that certainly is a jumble of tangentially-related figures. At least you aren't just making up numbers, as you did with your 30M illegal immigrants.

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Ah yeah Howie's got a good perspective.

‘While it is an important milestone for a campaign to qualify for primary matching funds, unfortunately the two major parties have allowed public campaign financing to lapse into irrelevance. Barack Obama delivered the final death blow when he opted out of financing for the general election in 2008. The result is that America has the worst democracy that Wall Street is allowed to buy,” noted Hawkins.

....

I wonder if he could run a program at non-swing states to increase the spectrum of Democracy.

I personally think Biden is total trash, I live in Montana (RED).

It would be interesting to see a chart showing what could happen in 2024 if "non-swing" states voted Green...

They've really drilled it into us that if there is a 3rd party candidate we will screw the whole system.

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Mine as well. Dems are not just racist, they have an openly racist ideology. It's shocking. That has been socially unacceptable since the Nuremberg Trials.

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Did the Asians suppress the Blacks and Hispanics?

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Both parties are and have been racist from their beginnings. That's how we got to here.

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I think you're missing the distinction. There's nothing like "critical race theory" on the Republican side. It's not since Jim Crow that a mainstream ideology linked morality to ethnicity. That was off limits until these geniuses came along.

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In other words, by their own twisted critical studies ideology, "whiteness" is a moral stain or kind of original sin that taints every institution it touches. And there is no cure for it but to purify whiteness from society. And that's essentially, what the social justice program calls for. It's pretty hard to distinguish that from Nazism other than the Jews were a minority in Germany. I concede, that's a big distinction, but the ideas are still incredibly dangerous. What's to stop "white people" from taking up these same ideas. They've been good at hating before.

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That’s actually a pretty incorrect statement about CRT, and indicates an uninformed criticism. No serious proponents of CRT advocate “purifying whiteness from society”. Where are you reading that? Genuinely curious. CRT and social justice generally is concerned with identifying and dismantling socio-political/economic inequalities. There are plenty of valid criticisms of CRT, but your is not one of them.

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NOPE:

Household Income inequity

Asian (India) $80,000 to $100,000

Whites $69,851 to $70,642

Hispanic $51,390 to $51,450

Black $41,130

Illegitimacy rate:

12% Asians

28% Whites

52% for Latinos

69% Blacks

Two Parents are better than one. Ask Educators.

If men fathered their children the FAMILY would have twice the income.

I saw a Documentary on Black Violence in Chicago. Their lives revolve around drugs, guns, violence & vandetta. they're too busy to work for a living. Brown violence is similar.

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founding

Hawkins/Walker 2020. Green Party.

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I'd prefer Jill Stein or Ralph Nader? Help me understand why Hawkins is special? What about the People's party via Nina / Cornel / Etc ?

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Neither was this year's candidate. I lost confidence in the way the FL electoral votes were divvied up (2008 primary) at a special meeting held in DC because the FL Dems had changed the election date. So Obama got her votes on a technicality winning the primary. You can watch the meeting on c-Span.

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The electoral college is guaranteed insurance that America is not a Democracy.

I meant ideologically I suppose. Nader and Stein seemed to have a vision. I don't see that with Howie?

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founding

Take a look at Hawkins' press release today about campaign financing.

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This is different from even 4 years ago. This is very different from the Obama years (at least in terms of scale) and definitely different from the Bill Clinton era. I've voted for Republicans and Democrats and I've often been a ticket splitter. This is going to be my first straight party ticket vote--Because, frankly, I care less right now if Trump or Biden wins than if Democrats at the state and local level win, or if they gain seats in the senate or congress. I could live with a Biden presidency and a bunch of new Republicans in state and local offices (and in congress). And not because I love the Republicans--I'm less enamored of the GOP than I was twenty years ago, and would gladly vote for a rational Democrat or independent (and have) but this year . . . nah.

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That Dems are playing the race card - ok. But Marxists? C'mon man! Joe's the Senator from MBNA! Dems don't even want to guarantee healthcare for everyone during a pandemic. Karl Marx is turning around in his grave!

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Don't care if they are or not. I would agree that they probably aren't actual Marxists. But they are willing to pretend they are. No thanks.

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They're just MATH brain dead. They never put out a budget to subsidize 30,000,000 unauthorized plus millions of people walking over the border right onto the California Welfare Line. 33% of all Welfare recipients live in California and they only represent 12% of the population. The spend $13,000,000,000 on Special Education but it doesn't matter as they reside in the 3 - 10 bottom most schools in educational ranking.

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Severely identarian. Some, anyway. All the Democrats? I doubt it. But anyone promoting critical race theory is essentially promoting a new-fangled racism with a lot of the old-school anti-minority racism of the bad old days coming back with a vengeance, dressed up in new fancy clothes. But beneath the surface it's still the same old racism. So those on the left who are buying into modern critical race theory . . . yeah, racist is fair. Maybe not the old kind. But if you're for segregation if it's done for the right reasons, it's still racist. If you want to discriminate in hiring and college admissions and contract awards based on race or sex or other grievance category--that is still very racist, no matter how pure the motives supposedly are. And it's the Democrats in California pushing to repeal legal restrictions on race discrimination in college admissions and the awarding of government contracts.

Which one may say is being done for the right reasons (to help previous oppressed minorities) but ultimately ends up looking very much like a paternalistic racism, to me.

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Voted Libertarian every presidential election since 1988. I'll be voting Trump this year. First time I ever felt compelled to vote for the lesser of evils. But there it is. War with Iran and the overwhelming racism and smothering of objectivity in the form of the wokesheviks make it an easy choice. Trump is an asshole. The alternative is far worse.

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Hi Peter- I'm generally with you- Did Jo Jorgensen's decision to join the 'wokesheviks' (can I use that? :) ) affect your thinking? It did for me. At this point above all other issues I would get behind any banner opposing this cultural poison.

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My husband is where you are. He’s voting for the only candidate not pushing identity politics.

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I'm not Peter but the short answer for me is yes. The Libertarian party is dead to me now.

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Exactly, Trump is an asshole. I'll tell you a secret, I act like an asshole too sometimes. So do most people I'm very close to. Matt's argument is that Trump is just a salesman who sells whatever the people want at the time and has no moral center. This is conjecture, his article is mostly conjecture and believing the lies of the MSM (I watch what happens live on C-span, before the MSM spins it). ACTUALLY, the opposite is true. Go and find the half dozen or so videos of Trump being interviewed by Oprah and others, from 3 DECADES ago and he sounds like Trump today, and that was NOT what people wanted "sold" to them back then! Biden, on the other hand, changes with the wind: No Franking, Yes, Franking, tough on crime, easy on crimes, secure borders, no borders/little security (he said "tech" would monitor the border - which means the illegal aliens come in and are lost in the landscape before the Border Patrol gets their jeep there!). Here's why I'm voting for Trump: because IF, yes, IF all the MSM was focused on what Trump has DONE and not on what he said or tweeted (and often LIED about it), it wouldn't even be a contest (What did JFK, FDR, Clinton, Bush, Carter, Lincoln, Eisenhower, etc. say in the oval office everyday?). Here's what Trump's done: he set up opportunity zones that work (by keeping gov out of it as much as possible), he got a "call-in to find out what you are good at" system for people to call in and find out aptitudes, he got the VA straightened out - no more dead vets or vets already dead turning into jell/goo in body bags in the wait to be picked up by loved ones (due to the VA's governmental incompetence), he got NATO to step up and pay more and the USA to pay less, he called Chancellor Mercel on her hypocrisy of having the private oil pipeline from totalitarian Russia, he called out and DID SOMETHING about China, he redid the terrible NAFTA and WHO treaties (which I guess they could have been done better, but it's a start!!!!), he ordered (and I don't think he can do this constitutionally, does anyone know?) all hospitals and clinics to be transparent in their treatments, charges and prices, he made it legal to buy pharma drugs from Canada, he got big Pharma to stop charging Americans a gazillion times more for the same drug (if Congress can get on board with this, as I think they need to pass it in a bill), right after he was in office he got super quick help to two hurricane hit areas within weeks of each other and did well on our territory out in the Atlantic that was hit right after (THWARTED BY DEMOCRATS there as they HID away the aid he sent), he had Black presidents of HBCUs into the oval office for the FIRST TIME and got them aid for a decade (or two?) instead of them coming "hat in hand" every YEAR as past presidents did, he got about 300 miles of a REAL border put up (a combo of replacing old and new), he got the military back in shape and gave soldiers pay increases for the first time in about a decade before (outside of "cost of living inflation increases"), he got ISIS decimated and got Iran and N. Korea to "settle down" by tariffs and got Europe on board, he bombed the Syrian gassers, he's in the process of getting most of our troops out of Iraq and Afghanistan and Europe, he set up defenses in Ukraine, he took away many of the millions (how many are there?) of federal regulations that hold the weight of the LAW. I'm tired of typing, maybe someone else can take over, as there's more.

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Btw, he did all this while being attacked constantly in the "Rules of Radicals" style!

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wokesheviks! Thank you lol.

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If I was a voting citizen, I'd likely vote Republican as well, despite historically being more on the side of Democrats and finding Trump's character and incomprehensible stupidity (in the context of politics, if nothing else) to be off-putting. I, like you, can't stomach the left / liberals / MSM in the Trump-era; they're unbridled and seem to have such a strong sense of entitlement, as if twinning a threat of demographics and the cowing of perceived opponents with baseless allegations of some nebulous bigotry grants them the right to lead.

The one thing I wonder about fits nicely within some of Matt's article; what would another 4 years of Trump do to the country? If the Dems of 2020 are a parody of what they claim to authentically represent, they have reached this point in large part due to Trump's presidency. Biden - Harris are ugly candidates, but they may be a commonsense bulwark against the worsening collective lunacy on the left. If Trump wins another 4 years, the (likely) inevitable Democratic president in 2024 is bound to be magnitudes worse than Biden - Harris. Would there be anyone in the Democratic party even approximating a moderate at that point?

All that being said, the blatant efforts of the media, pols, bureaucrats, et al. to misrepresent, manipulate and misinform in undemocratic efforts against an elected leader should not be forgotten / forgiven. The clear and repeated manufacturing of content / consent should be disconcerting to all. Trump's lasting gift to those willing to notice will be the revelation of these efforts by the 'taste-makers' of society and that these institutions rarely, if ever, deserve our blind reverence.

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Marianne Williamson, like Matt, also said “Biden isn’t a solution, he’s a pause in the action.” I think Matt is saying he’s tired of the constantly traumatic news cycle that centers around trump...I don’t think he’s suggesting our problems as a country will magically go away.

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Exactly. The whole "You had a sloppy ending" part, where Gramps provides his version of Matt's idea of a slower news cycle, is a straw man.

I also think it's odd that people are worried about insane leftists wielding the levers of power if Biden, hardly an avatar for that agenda, wins. I mean, I'm as annoyed by anyone else that fucked-up Millennials decided en masse to, among other things, enter journalism not to do journalism but as a means of publicly enacting and re-enacting their narcissistic psychodramas. Most of these shitmongers are now with the NY Times and various liberal online-only media companies.

Anyway, having badly fumbled the plot, I will end there.

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There you go, blame the millennials that set up the incentives for this mess....

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OH! YES!. If Biden gets in, the MSM will minimize the racial conflict and lie about everything else. They will lull US into the boiling water of Divisive Diversity and quietly kill any European culture, history and economy left.

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I agree with this completely.

I am a liberal guy who voted for Obama twice, am gay and attended a liberal arts college. The identity politics the left pushes should have worked on me and taken root in me. I watched MSNBC, Maddow, The Young Turks, Daily Show, you name the lefty late night or evening new pundits or "comedians" and I drank it all up.

What changed for me though is it infected my hobby, which was video games. Out of nowhere while in college I was getting told online how gamers didn't like gays, women and were patriarchal misogynistic racists. I heard it some much it became too absurd to accept as reality. This wasn't a Trump phenonoma, this was pre-Trump. The culture war began before him and his election was a sympton, a response, to it. It is also why I believe he needs to win because the dangers that come from injecting criitical race theory which demands people view every interaction through racial lenses is built to divide people across identity groups. It will create more racists. The White Supremacists of today with power are not the conservative KKK or neo-nazis or even Richard Spencer alt-rights of the world, they are the Robin D'Angelo's of the world. The anti-racism activists, trainers, and professors that claim that you can only be racist if you belong to a particular identity group and that to deny that you are racist, shows that you are 'fragile' and therefore racist. The left is in a moral panic cult, and the Democrats, while the establishment types don't believe any of it, will use it to their own ends and be crushed by the damn thing themselves.

I'll take the rude, crude, bombastic bull in the china shop that is Trump over them any day. At least he's on my side!

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We should vote for the sane people. And perhaps we can tell who they are. Sane Democrats don't talk about Trump ALL the damned time, and don't talk in Critical Race Theory circles either. Likewise, sane Republicans don't take up Trump's demon-of-the-day talking points against whoever he's mad at, stay on issues that matter.

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I agree with your assessment - in particular of the, "sloppy ending to this article." I think Matt could have productively just left off the last short paragraph. I'm not sure exactly what he meant by it in practical terms. He didn't come right out and say, "vote for Biden/Harris," though that would appear to be the implication. Knowing he is sympathetic to the Unity 2020 movement, I wonder why he ended this piece the way he did.

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Perhaps he simply shied away from stating something that would bring on a state of queasiness if not outright nausea. Have read a number of "vote for Biden" articles by Left (and sometimes outright revolutionary) writers and was shocked by some of them. And speaking of the revolutionary Left, was left wondering after those reads why, if someone really wants the system to come down, they wouldn't recommend leaving Trump in power. He might not be absolutely more destructive than Biden, but would certainly do the job faster.

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That's why I'll be voting for him. I never thought I'd vote republican and especially not for Trump but, the Democrats keep refusing to get the message. The last four years have really made me sick. Liberal hand-wringing and the media have driven me to it.

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I've got to agree, on pretty much all points... although I'm more likely to vote 3rd party. I just don't see us going back to normal after this election. I'm not sure we know what normal is. The bottle has been opened, and the genie is out. Regardless of who wins come November, I anticipate a never-ending flurry of investigations, speculation of wrongdoing, and panic-mongering to be the new normal.

If we manage to avoid an outright civil war, I'll consider 2020 a success despite all of the tragedy and travesty this year has brought.

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I'm with gramps. though I may be younger. Elite institutional America is now organized to promote a possibly addled presidential candidate who has raffled off foreign policy in Ukraine and, worse, China, to enrich his child.

We have many fine upstanding persons in our country. In 2016 and again this year, two of them have not been nominated by our corrupt parties as presidential candidates.

Why don't we have a NONE OF THE ABOVE line on every mailed-out ballot?

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Imagine being a republican and complaining about Democrats being racist...

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Is this more absurd than the inverse, though?

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MAY ALL BEINGS BE HAPPY

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I'm thoroughly enjoying watching Trump credibly blast the hypocrisy of the MSM and Democrats. Holding Trump up to media scrutiny should have been as easy as hitting the broad side of a barn but from the very beginning, they couldn't stop their hysterical non-stop 24/7 freakout. All the non-stop gaslighting, vicious, manipulative, abusive, divisive theatrics was all for nothing, everything they've done has backfired spectacularly. It's comical. No, Trump isn't leaving anytime soon. They've thoroughly ruined their own reputations. Trump isn't winning, he's simply incapable of self-destructing as spectacularly as the Democratic party. Trump is a jackass and a serial bullshitter. What does that make his opponents?

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Exactly. Blaming Trump for the astonishing corruption of the Media and Democrats is condoning their insanity. And let's call it what it is. Evil. Americans have more sense than that.

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They don't. Trump is evil too.

If they were sane, they would have voted for John Kasich or Bernie Sanders or any one of a host of people who are decent, if flawed, people that actually give a damn what happens to Americans.

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Sorry, being a Marxist is beyond "flawed." He is openly, avowedly, unapologetically Marxist. Kasich is just a loser.

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Only an idiot can claim that Sanders is a Marxist

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Cutting to the chase: the end of private property, the end of capitalism. Ultimately, the state controls every aspect of your life...Venezuela. Read how "rule by decree" converted the richest country in SA to a place where people have been reduced to eating out of dumpsters. Marxism always goes hand in hand with corruption. The daughter of the late Hugo Chavez--the guy who ruined the place--has $4.2 billion in offshore banks.

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Am wondering whether the dumpster story is perhaps on the same level as the incubator babies story.

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What about being a Marxist is "beyond flawed?" The history of implementation has been a mixed bag, to say the least. Marxists got one global superpower out of it, which is pretty good. They also got a lot of hard failing states, which is less good. And even more stagnating states than we saw under capitalism, which isn't good either.

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Except the failures were and are helped along by capitalists who don't want to give up their social status and out sized share of money, power, and prestige.

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That's why they cleared the field for Biden on the eve of Super Tuesday. At that point, Bernie was an option. Don't forget that phone calls from the DNC power brokers solidified the vote for Biden for the establishment while the progressives were still divided.

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Dead-on. It's like a Cinderella story turned inside out: a party given two consecutive elections they couldn't possibly lose, only to say, "We'll find a way."

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I think this is what gets me the most. You had Tulsi, Yang, Marianne Williamson... interesting people with interesting ideas. I'm not a Bernie fan, but lots of people were. And yet the Democrat power brokers engineered Biden's Super Tuesday comeback the same way they cleared the field for Hillary. They were so proud of their part in getting Trump to the head of the Republican party and both times they've acted like now that Trump is the GOP guy they're entitled to shove the shittiest standard bearers in the Democrat party down the country's throat. This is how you get the enthusiasm gap.

The biggest thing I enjoy about Trump is the people he pisses off. But that's not really a good reason to vote for someone. Wish the Dems had given us someone more likely to take on corporate America and less likely to start another war than Trump.

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I do too. It makes one feel so angry and hopeless that these people play games with so many millions of lives, and get in the way of others who actually want to do good. After so many defeats it just makes you want to give up and retreat into your corner of the world and live out your life away from it.

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I so agree with your last paragraph. Yet these concerns are the least focused on in the media except the left media (Chris Hedges et al.).

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It's as if the captain of the _Titanic_ heard he was going to be relieved of command, and deliberately rammed the iceberg to prevent that.

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That’s because ultimately, they’re all on the same team. The Plutocraticans. Of course they’d rather see Trump win than to allow a New Deal Democrat like Sanders continue to stir up the working classes. You can’t really mention class in this country on mainstream media. They’re aghast if someone does.

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2016: WTF?

2020: Hold my beer.

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Y'know, every "fact-check" piece I see in my local daily or anywhere on line most often just draws attention to how they are rescrambling all the time to capture and pin down 'truth', mount it on a flagstaff, and lead out in the name of the true truth. A "fact check" is almost always a re-arrangement of "minifacts", and often adds up to less than thE sume of the parts.

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That couldn't be better said. Why are we here as a people in this horrid lurch? It's thanks to the crappiness of our putative betters.

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Spot on perspective.... and people see it... the more you kick the shit out of someone, the more they root for him to win.... think Rocky against Drago....

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I can't say I'm rooting for Trump to win, but I am rooting for the Democrats to lose after four years of Russiagate, and the key election strategy once again being a likely futile effort to woo suburban Republicans (which is really just a smokescreen that enables them to keep placating donors and pretending they don't need the left or progressive/populist economic policies).

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I still think they're taking a dive. They want to implement crappy policy and need a fall guy. That's my theory anyway.

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My thoughts exactly-we need to see the Ds lose, as opposed to seeing Trump win (even if it amounts to the same thing in a practical sense)

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The problem, though, is that presidential elections have now become “I watch CNN/MSNBC/etc” or “I watch Fox/right-wing media” as opposed to,”I like what this candidate stands for.” But I guess that’s to be expected when every candidate stands for nothing.

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The cultural revolution predates Trump by years. It’s a mistake to believe that Trump is somehow responsible for the predations of the identitarian left. They were going to burn us down anyway. He might throw fuel on the fire and I’m glad he does because I’ve been watching the revolution unfold for years and nobody believed me. They do now.

The radicals have gotten a foothold in our major institutions and they aren’t going anywhere. Cultural revolution doesn’t come about in three years because “orange man bad.” It happens because of an organized and deliberate ideological long game campaign that seeks to overthrow the state. Nobody needs to conspire. They only need to learn a few simple strategies and remember that the foal is to seize power for the group, by any means necessary.

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Huh? The identitarian left has already been co-opted by corporate America. It's Nike and Gillette. Overthrow the state? They are the state. Pacify the left and acknowledge the demographic shifts in America without requiring any substantive change to the economic system and established monopolies. It's a veneer to resist systemic change.

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They have co-opted each other because money and power, not actual change, is the goal.

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On certain campuses and sometimes on the streets, the activism looks more like extreme religious fervor. Don’t be so sure that total devotion and relentless action to seize power is off the table.

Critical theory offers a bizarre totalitarian ideology that reminds me of Mao’s cultural revolution.

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You are correct about some people ready for revolution. But I think corporate America and the corporatist wing of the Democrat party are just in it for co-branding.

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It's refreshing to know others can so plainly see this. Cheers, Geoff.

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Nah, no conspiracy is required.

The present-day popularity of Identitarianism is due to the historic tendency of American popular political movements to take the form of Moralist Crusades (for both good and ill.) And the attraction of the appeal is its "four legs good; two legs bad" simplicity. Certainly not its coherence.

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Spot on.

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100% spot on.

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*the goal

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Amen. Watch the Yuri Bezenov lectures and interviews from the 80's... it's all explained .

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Are there transcripts? I don't do rely on video for learning about politics or history.

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As far as I know, only videos from public lectures and several interviews he gave in the 80's - very sober and factual, not montage style - before he was offed. He is really worth listening to, exKGB agent who defected and then revealed the highly detailed Marxist/KGB program by which a society is progressively destroyed from within through the undermining of its social and cultural structures, targeting mainly the younger generation - ie 1968. The 'dumpster fire that is the US today' is the result of eighty odd years of the application of this program.

I believe anyone who wants to understand the deep causes of where we are today must hear what he has to say. It may be history, but it is also actuality, look out your window! If you can't find transcripts, please watch, and pass it on.

Also, it is NOT the Russians ; it was, then, the Soviet Union and their fifth columnists everywhere. They are still recovering from the same thing done to them.

Whittaker Chambers was right after all, pace!

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I don't buy that the Russian Soviets have been carrying out a long game strategy targeting US society by seeding it with decadence since the 1960s, and that today's social Zeitgeist is due to their success at that endeavor. That's just crazy talk. The Cold War era Russians always had a tin ear for the societies they were trying to influence, whether in the 3rd World, or here.

I don't have a problem admitting that they tried. But they were always much, much better at counterintelligence than they were at cultural subversion. The Russians are superb at playing against opposing intelligence agencies. But their cultural interactions in foreign lands were never all that savvy. The Castorite Cubans did better with cultural influence in the 3rd world nations. But in the US, they never had anything like the traction of the right-wing Cuban exiles. That influence extended farther than most people know. And most of those who know don't want to admit it.

Americans got into this mess ourselves. Some of it has to do with the rebound impacts of history- why would anyone think that the U. S. of America is exempt from those? Some of it has to do with the American tendency to frame political movements as absolutist crusades. A whole hell of a lot of it has to do with the War On Drugs, which has a history that just isn't as simple as either the axe-grinding Left or the axe-grinding Right tries to frame it. The warped social condition of Prohibition that has nurtured the booming criminal economy in this country- and around the world, although the US has always led the way in insisting on globalizing the War on Drugs- has impacts that are so powerful that everyone in power is scared to be honest about the facts of that history. You know how people insist that Race is the big Taboo topic in the US? Bollocks. A real Taboo is something that nobody wants to talk about, and when the subject comes up they try and stuff it back in the box as soon as possible. As is the case with trying to have a serious ongoing discussion of the full array of impacts from the illicit drugs trade in this country, at every demographic, cultural, and regional level, in every relevant arena of domestic policy (most of them) and foreign policy (where the impacts have also been significant.)The silence on that issue? That's what a real Taboo looks like.

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"The Cold War era Russians always had a tin ear for the societies they were trying to influence, whether in the 3rd World, or here."

I do have to note that the Internet era does have aspects that are tailor-made for Soviet disinformation, propaganda, and cultural subversion. Russian intelligence has always placed heavy emphasis and value on the behavioral research of Ivan Pavlov. Their view of human behavior is basically a cynically focused adaptation of Pavlovian behaviorism. For example, the entire phenomenon of "triggering"- that's Pavlov. Triggering is real, but people are supposed to learn how to use their self-aware consciousness to debug it instead of reifying it and reinforcing it. Trauma conditioning often leads to a particularly severe form of triggering, and I get that it can be very challenging to get past it. But much of what gets called "triggering" these days is artificially reified and exaggerated, or even entirely phony. The notion that hypersensitivity should be valorized and cultivated is ridiculous.

Pavlov can be defeated, but people have to learn how to think for themselves. Which involves not only learning how to think critically, but how to think critically all the time- even when it challenges ones preconceived notions and ego structures. Lots of people know how to exercise skepticism and think critically, but mastery involves doing it all the time. The result of that is Integrity. Integrity beats Pavlov.

Pavlovian conditioning always involves some level of checking out and compartmentalizing. Better to check oneself than to check out.

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So the left would be sane if only there were no Trump? Speakers wouldn't be run off college campuses and threatened with violence for offering a different point of view? College men wouldn't be stripped of due process based on hysteria? Big Tech wouldn't be controlling discourse? Critical race theory wouldn't be jammed down people's throats? Kids wouldn't be indoctrinated in anti-Western propaganda at universities, to the point where they don't even know where their own ideas of individual rights come from?

Only problem is, all of this was in motion well before Trump took his trip down the escalator. It's why he won. He's the symptom, not the disease.

And as crazy as he can be, if he loses, there will be no restraint whatever on leftist insanity, which controls every major institution.

Matt, this posting it pathetic. I can get this TDS drivel anywhere for free. I subscribed here because I thought you were better than that.

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Who is this 'left' you're referring to? Anyone I know who considers themselves progressive is quite sane and open to discussing opposing ideas. I think the news media is just constantly picking up the most crazy stories they can find and then bombarding us with them so we keep watching and keep fighting. They are making us hate each other based on false images. I'm personally extremely tired of Trump, anti Trump, the media, Twitter - just all of it. I really, really, really just want to focus on addressing real issues and moving forward. We have serious stuff to deal with and it's time we stop indulging in these petty, divisive arguments. How are we going to save our environment? How do we restore our middle class? How do we remake our economy so it serves the majority rather than just a few? How do we reform our justice system including police? I agree Trump is a symptom not a cause but Trump is a clown who has got to go. Biden is no savior but if he's the tool to getting rid of Trump, then so be it. I think Matt is right, we bought a bad product - there's no getting a refund on these lost years so let's just take the loss, learn and move on.

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I used to be a progressive. I left after the Dems started endorsing the riots. I’ve never had TDS. I figured there was a rational reason why half the country voted for him, not because they were racist or “deplorable”. Now, I’ve lost almost all my friends because I’m voting Donald Trump.

You mistake how propagandized the left is. I’ve seen TDS in action in person. My friend went into flight/fight mode physically after I told her that I was voting Trump. Heavy breathing, enlarged eyes, flared nostrils. I was not being aggressive. I was just standing there 5 ft away but just the mention of me being a Trump voter made her perceive me as a physical threat. That is what TDS does to people. They have been brainwashed to believe that Trump supporters are evil and will bring them actual physical harm. How do you deal with that?

It’s frightening to me. Coming out as a conservative or a Trump supporter now is akin to coming out as gay decades ago. It’s very isolating and I know of someone who is staying in the closet for fear of being labeled a racist and losing all his friends. It’s very sad. It’s not as reasonable as you think.

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While I am not a Trump supporter, the liberals have made me say and think things I never would have thought possible in the past because they are driving me away with their crazy. I work in academia where the mere suggestion that you understand where Trump supporters are coming from (which I have done), as you said creates a visceral response that to me is simply sad. People can't even just agree to disagree anymore, or heaven forbid learn something from each other. People in my sector get cancelled and lose their jobs and reputation over it, just as Matt has reported on what's happening in liberal journalism. I belong to Heterodox Academy, which is a group of academics started by Jonathan Haidt that promote and accept viewpoint diversity and can entertain opposing ideas without hating the person who holds them. People like him are our only way forward. Hate must not be allowed to win, from either side.

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Working with Jonathan Haidt sounds awesome. When I hear him talk, he sounds like a very calm and kind man. I’m glad he was one of the people sounding the alarm about the results of helicopter parenting and how it is impacting the “woke” culture. Very insightful.

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Yes, isn't it glorious and somewhat sad when "calm and kind" (and I dare add "reasonable") are attributes we are pleasantly surprised to find. Shouldn't those things be the default??

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Visceral response - positive or negative?

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Sorry for not clarifying, thanks for asking -- truly. It's a negative response. Academia (so I'd assumed it was implied) in America is overwhelmingly Left these days, so visceral in favor of Trump is a non starter there.

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I have got the same treatment. I never treat anyone on the left like that...in fact, I was a liberal before...TDS is real.

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I don't know where to begin - maybe with saying I do not have TDS. I dislike Trump both as a person and as a president for pretty clear reasons. As a person, I don't like his whole emphasis on wealth and money. I was first learned about Trump decades ago and at that time my immediate reaction was that he is an entitled, shallow, egotistical, tacky person who makes his money off of lies and using people. His hotels are beyond ridiculous. This has nothing to do with politics. I just find all of that disgusting.

As president I dislike his policies if you can even call them that because he doesn't seem to even think them through - his actions seem guided only by destruction and division. He shows zero concern for the environment, calls climate change a hoax even though the effects are starting to make themselves very clear. His foreign 'policy' seems guided by breaking treaties and making as many offensive comments as possible to allies. I guess at least he hasn't started any wars but I'm not sure he hasn't laid the foundation for future conflicts. He cares not one bit for the world's poor - remember his 'shithole countries' comment? He's been praised for his China policy but to my mind, China did not steal US jobs they took what American companies gave them to the benefit of their people. China is not responsible for protecting American workers - our government is. (And I do understand this started long before Trump) His COVID response has been an unmitigated disaster - there is no coherence meaning that not only have we had the most cases and the most deaths but he has managed to break the economy causing small businesses to crumble and workers to suffer. The economy is not just the stock market. Maybe the worst aspect of the Trump presidency is the way he's taken what were already divisions in American society and made them worse with his comments - openly siding with the worst factions of the American right and making the left the enemy not just an opposing viewpoint. He's really just bad at his job is the bottom line in my opinion. And even worse than that, he seems to make no attempt to improve or learn.

As for Trump supporters, in my mind they are not Trump. I don't consider them racist or deplorable across the board. I worked with some Trump voters and that didn't determine whether I liked them or not. People are more than their politics. I certainly never considered them scary. I do think however, that it would be hard to deny that to support Trump you have to be at least tolerant of racist and hateful comments and willing to go along with his belligerence toward and stereotyping of those he's decided to blame for all that's wrong with America. Curious - why do you support Trump?

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Glad it’s isolating. It should be, unlike being “gay.”

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Aren’t you nice. No one should be isolated because of their political beliefs. You shouldn’t lose friendships because you have a different opinion. I can see that you’ve lost your ability to be civil. Further proving why so many people are leaving the left.

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Moron.

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@Berta - You must be a new Matt subscriber. I'd like to refer you to his article "The New Puritans". Then get back to me on "sane and open to discussing".

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