The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

The Left’s Pyrrhic Victory (and When Did Everybody Become ‘Alt-Right’?)

Posted on | August 4, 2018 | Comments Off on The Left’s Pyrrhic Victory (and When Did Everybody Become ‘Alt-Right’?)


Let me begin by congratulating Sarah Jeong on becoming America’s most successful young hate-monger. She is arguably more racist than Richard Spencer, and yet is employed by the New York Times, and Vox is celebrating this as a victory over the “alt-right”:

She’s also an outspoken progressive and feminist, making her an obvious target for the right-wing internet mobs that have been especially active of late, launching organized smear campaigns against left-leaning celebrities by weaponizing their old jokes and tweets.
The most high-profile recent example of this is Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn, who was fired by Disney after a concerted push to dredge up and circulate several of Gunn’s old tweets. Many of the tweets contained jokes about topics like rape and pedophilia — but they were also several years old, purposely taken out of context, and pointedly curated and misrepresented to paint a very specific picture of Gunn with the express goal of getting him fired.
A similar thing happened to Jeong, and the resulting fray became something of a test for the New York Times, as well as a test of the power of alt-right internet mobs. In this case, the mob lost — which might be a sign that one of the alt-right’s signature trolling tactics is losing its effectiveness.

This interpretation includes so many wild distortions that I hesitate to begin unpacking them all. For example, there was no “context” for James Gunn’s “jokes” about rape and pedophilia. You can’t take something out of context if there is no context to begin with; what Gunn’s tweets showed is that, before the Internet feminist brigades began their #MeToo crusades, such remarks were acceptable as “edgy” humor on the Left. And given what we know about Hollywood in the wake of the scandals surrounding Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, Bryan Singer, et al., it is by no means certain that Gunn was merely joking.

Furthermore, it is absurd to describe research into a public figure’s past writings — on Twitter or anywhere else — as a “trolling tactic,” which is certainly not limited to the “alt-right.” Media Matters actually made this their “signature” tactic, compiling dossiers on various conservative media personalities in an effort to discredit them. Rush Limbaugh has been doing 15 hours of talk radio for 30 years, and so it is easy for the Left’s Argus-eyed media monitors to accumulate various things he’s said which, when “taken out of context,” make him look like a disreputable ogre.

Ask any conservative hate-listed by the SPLC (me, for example) what it’s like to work for decades to achieve a successful career and then be labeled a menace to society based on some left-wing ideologue’s interpretation. The Left has been smearing the Right this way for so long — they did it to Barry Goldwater, they did it Ronald Reagan, they do it to every conservative — that we scarcely even notice it anymore.

What has happened in recent years is that the Right has begun to fight fire with fire, and the Left calls this “harassment.” This was the basic story of #GamerGate: Videogame enthusiasts had grown tired of their hobby being targeted by “social justice warriors” (SJWs) and decided to fight back. Defending themselves against the organized lobby of politically correct censors and critical-theory busybodies (e.g., Anita Sarkeesian), the #GamerGate crew were accused of “misogyny” and “haraassment.” And this exposes the double-standard: When the Left attacks the videogame industry, this is “activism”; when gamers fight back, this is “harassment.” Likewise, when left-wing outfits use the past words of conservatives to brand them racist, this is “research”; when the tables are turned, liberals call it “trolling.”

As John Sexton at Hot Air notes, the Left is defending Sarah Jeong’s anti-white hatred as simply “the way the social justice left talks”:

“White people” is a shorthand in these communities, one that’s used to capture the way that many whites still act in clueless and/or racist ways. It’s typically used satirically and hyperbolically to emphasize how white people continue to benefit (even unknowingly) from their skin color, or to point out the ways in which a power structure that favors white people continues to exist.

Having engaged in a bit of satirical hyperbole myself, I call bulls–t here. It’s a blatant double-standard — one rule for liberals, another rule for everybody else — that permits “the social justice left” to engage in blatant hate-mongering, while conservatives are compelled to tiptoe carefully and watch every word lest they accidentally say something that might somehow be interpreted as “racism.” What conservatives need to do is to start calling the Left’s rhetoric what it is: hate propaganda.

“Everything is implicitly organized around how men see the world — and not just men, how white men see the world — and this is a problem, this is why so many things suck.”
Sarah Jeong, Oct. 27, 2015

Clay Waters at Newsbusters notes how “alt-right” is used as a smear:

While Jeong’s critics were given the hostile ideological labels and smeared as “alt-right,” her obviously liberal journalistic defenders needed no label besides “journalists.”
The media has defined “alt-right” as racist and violent, so lumping the “alt-right” in with mainstream conservative publications that have called out Jeong’s tweets for racism amounts to a slur.

You see how the “alt-right” label is an attempt to discredit criticism, implying that anyone who objects to Ms. Jeong’s words is some sort of extremist troglodyte, engaged in “bullying” and “harassment.” By this rhetorical device, the vicious hate-monger Sarah Jeong is magically transformed into a heroic victim, a martyr for “social justice.”

We have a way to defeat this. It’s called “voting.”


Donald Trump is president in large measure because millions of Americans are tired of being demonized — racist! sexist! homophobe! — as a rhetorical substitute for any actual policy the Democrats might offer. Americans were expected to vote for Obama to prove they weren’t racist, and many were OK with that, but when it was demanded that they vote for Hillary Clinton to prove they weren’t sexist, they said, “Hell, no.”

Let the Left celebrate its pyrrhic victory, making the New York Times synonymous with the hate propaganda spewed by Sarah Jeong.

Instapundit explains how this should work out:

By keeping her on and defending her, the New York Times — and the blue-check tribe on Twitter that’s been taking her side — is playing into Trump’s hands. See, Trump can say, this is what they really think of you. Because, you know, it is.

November 6 is barely three months away.



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