THE ALT-RIGHT’S PROXY WAR BEHIND DONALD TRUMP … continued
Prior to the presidential candidacy of Trump, the political impact of President Barack Obama and a supporting Democratic majority in the Congress spilled into the domains of pop culture, elevating to mainstream leftist voices that had, in decades past, operated either as token minorities or passive background agents for change.
While legacy conservatives and liberals clashed in Washington, D.C., over repeal of Obamacare, gay marriage and national security, a new conflict for modern culture was emerging online between Alt-Right and social justice warrior activists.
From Anita Sarkeesian’s “GamerGate” controversy, to the reporting of campus rape incidents, to “trigger” boycotts, to the shooting of Trayvon Martin and the trial of George Zimmerman and more, Twitter became a battleground for competing views on the structure and role of American society.
The modern domestic Alt-Right movement is reactionary in that it exists in response to perceived cultural Marxism taking hold of America, and it is populated by predominantly younger, white males who feel excluded by the modern system.
The so-called Alt-Right is distinct from traditional conservatism in that it proceeds from the understanding that Western male culture is an organizing force for human civilization superior to anything or anyone else in the world. This doctrine goes beyond political or religious arguments and goes so far as to pseudointellectually appropriate from Robert MacArthur and E.O. Wilson’s r/K Selection Theory to believe that U.S. liberals are like “rabbits,” — or r-selected reproductive strategists — inferior organisms that live only to reproduce rapidly and consume ecological resources.
This perception of evolutionary, intellectual and cultural superiority is key to understanding why Trump’s inflammatory statements scarcely dent his standing among some of his most die-hard supporters. When Little Bird social media analyst Marshall Kirkpatrick sampled a snapshot of one particular week of @realDonaldTrump tweets in January, he found 28 percent of the re-tweets were “at least one of the top 50 White Nationalist accounts on Twitter” and some “62% of them follow at least 3 people who’ve used the hashtag #WhiteGenocide lately.”
The Alt-Right believes that Trump is the political messiah they have been waiting for. His promises of building a great wall along the U.S./Mexico border, setting a moratorium on Islamic immigration and exacting mercantilist/dependencia trade regimes on the rest of the world translate to disaffected young men as the realization of their long-delayed worldview of America.
When ex-Breitbart reporter Michelle Fields accused Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski of bruising her, Alt-Right personalities on Twitter smeared Fields by recirculating aspersions that Fields was lying about the encounter or even a professional victim. For the online Alt-Right, the Fields incident was less about whether a journalist was improperly handled by campaign staff and more about shaming Fields as a female effigy to attack over chronic anger with feminism in the media in general.
Sadly, when the Alt-Right sees a young woman like Fields reporting an injury at a political event, many among them internally conflate Fields’ police report with the Rolling Stone magazine’s report of alleged rape of “Jackie” on the UVA campus. The more the Trump campaign denied and kicked back with personal attacks on Fields’ character, the more the Alt-Right saw themselves as succeeding in their proxy war against feminism. (In reality, the mistreatment of Fields is a significant setback for conservative culture and traditional gender roles between men and women, as it reinforces the strawman argument among liberals that Republican men are somehow abusive, violent and uncontrollable toward women.)
What Alt-Right supporters of the Trump campaign fail to recognize amidst all their collective projection is that, should he be elected, social justice warriors, feminists, race activists and other leftist groups would thrive on the same kind of political agar that incubated tea party conservatives to victory following the election of President Obama in 2008. As it stands, in many states, Democrats and their partner liberal organizations are already using the Trump campaign’s controversies as a pretext to challenge incumbent conservative Republicans in November.
Writing for the Federalist, national security scholar Tom Nichols says, “President Obama’s cult of personality … sacrificed more than 900 Democratic seats and a passel of governorships on its altar over the past seven years. President Obama won two elections and the Democratic Party lost hundreds. If Trump’s victory means this kind of ‘winning,’ conservatives should want no part of it.” Instead of suppressing their sworn arch-enemies, Alt-Righters would be giving leftists a springboard to take control of local city councils, state legislatures and both chambers of Congress.
One can only find it ironic that the “cuckservative” epithet coined by Alt-Righters to describe Establishment Republicans like Jeb Bush or Marco Rubio has etymological roots in the word “cuckold,” a weak husband whose inability to hold his house results in outsiders’ ravishing what he holds most dear. If Alt-Righters succeed in electing President Trump, their moral weakness and political impatience will allow the very liberal activists they loathe to take control of America as never before.
In international terms, a Trump presidency would likely rally America’s adversaries together into a superalliance of strange bedfellows more bizarre than the Republican #NeverTrump confederacy. Russia — which Alt-Righters foolishly exalt as the purported “enemy” of ISIS — would use a Trump presidency as a pretext to accelerate their resurgent arms race with NATO and the U.S., building even more nuclear weapons and modern strategic platforms even as America works out a “good deal” on the proposed big wall.
In the same way that the Cold War United States organized the West to contain the radical expansionist agenda of the post-WWII Soviet Union, today’s Russia, China and India would likely move to contain the “great” America under Trump. Trump’s belligerence and insulting hyper-nationalism toward Mexico might even result in a scenario where our southern neighbor becomes a client state of China.
Short of absconding to Brazil, Southeast Asia or the Philippines, alpha-male millennial Alt-Righters “left behind” in a such an America would be in a world of … well, you get the idea.
Worse yet, the Alt-Right adoration of Trump as a kind of ideological Batman to mete punishment to their foes reflects a poor understanding of historical cycles and political power. As F.A. Hayek’s “Road to Serfdom” illustrates, when a “strongman with a plan” is appointed by the people to consolidate power on their behalf to fix a nation, such men rarely have need of their supporters after rising to power. Strongmen historically persecute supporters rather than promoting them as promised, as such public spectacles serve as opportunities for enemies and undecideds to submit and find grace — after all, if a dictator can persecute his friends, how would he treat his enemies? (See: Adolf Hitler and his SA, Joseph Stalin and the Communist Party, Saddam Hussein and the Ba’ath Party, et al.)
America has already been given a preview of how Trump “rewards” his allies; like Mickey Rourke’s iconic King Hyperion from the movie “Immortals” who breaks the balls of a defector as the price of his redemption, Chris Christie and Ben Carson hobble around as demoralized, defeated surrogates, reciting confessions of support that evoke more cognitive dissonance than inspiration. This is why the late JFK charged Americans to remember the proverb that “those who foolishly sought power by riding the back of the tiger later ended up inside.”
IT’S LIKE “HEADS THEY WIN, TAILS YOU’RE GONNA LOSE”
Do the rest of us, then, have something to worry about? Not really. Even if Trump advances to the GOP nomination, he faces almost certain electoral defeat against either Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders, both of whom are drooling at the mouth to engage in political judo with the bombastic billionaire. If Mrs. Clinton is the Democratic nominee, Americans might find Trump’s brash, vulgar style to be a turnoff and even vote for the former First Lady out of sympathy.
As it is, even in conservative circles, several prominent Republicans have not been shy to confess they would vote for Mrs. Clinton if forced to choose between her and the reality TV star. How can a party that hates its own nominee possibly win against a formidable, prepared and enthusiastic opponent in November?
Alt-Righters uplifting the Trump Train would do well to recognize their steaming locomotive may be unstoppable at present, but it is also quickly running out of tracks. Their projection of their desires and ideal qualities upon the renegade candidate shows a very limited worldview, one that will only bind them further to the very state of defeat they seek rescue from.
In the final analysis, history will have much to say about the fates of the Democratic and Republican parties and the impact of Mr. Trump and Mrs. Clinton on American history. They will write of the racial tensions, cultural clashes, economic crisis and scourge of international terror that propelled the parties and their candidates. Our children’s children might even read as a minor caption on a historical photo some of the large rallies or protests of Election 2016. But there is one thing that history will omit and lose to the sands of time: Alt-Right millennials.
Now that’s annihilation.