I’ve been a bit snowed under preparing for my upcoming move, but I wanted to share with my readers some of the most insightful commentary I’ve heard on dealing with fascism and the alt-right in America in a long time. Both are from Chapo Trap House, which shot to the top of my favorite podcast list while I was in Ukraine this summer.
The first is a full episode. which you can find here. It’s a scathing indictment of mainstream liberals’ behavior in the face of rising neo-Nazism in America, when some liberal commentators decided that the radical left was more of a threat than literal neo-Nazis. Worse still, they brandished their idiotic “horseshoe theory” to help explain why the far left is supposedly the same as the alt-right, and it’s also their fault that Queen Hillary crashed and burned while running against a gelatinous orange blob with the mind of a child. But when the Nazis made their presence impossible to ignore, it wasn’t the middle-aged suburban white moms wearing “pussy hats” on their heads or think tank academics who faced the thugs down in the streets- it was the “unrealistic” radical left.
The other important message in this podcast is that liberalism’s inability to solve the contradictions of the capitalist system inevitably leads to the rise of fascism. Capitalist logic, Malthusian ideology, and an utter lack of ideas or a vision of a better future leads people to formulate terrifying solutions to the real problems we all face. As the hosts point out, the liberal system tells us that our resources are finite and overpopulation is a danger, and because they won’t propose a progressive solution to this issue, thousands of people worldwide see the solution to the problem in wiping out other ethnic groups or “races” so as to secure all the resources for their own group (and by extension, themselves).
The second piece is an excerpt from another episode of the show, featuring Angela Nagle, author of Kill All Normies. Nagle has produced one of the first books on the Alt-Right, and in this interview she explains how the media actually aids alt-right figures like Richard Spencer. In short, many journalists are wholly unable to properly interview neo-Nazis and their fellow travelers because they have little background knowledge about their beliefs.
It’s interesting to speculate as to why so many journalists and politicians fail to understand neo-Nazi ideology and often fail to take them as a serious threat. I’m just taking a stab in the dark here, but it could have to do with the fact that most of the journalists who conduct such interviews tend to be middle class liberals who don’t really hold strong beliefs. A feature of contemporary liberalism today is disdain for any kind of idealistic belief. Liberalism itself is often presented as though it’s not an ideology at all. Well sadly for the think tank crowd- people still believe in things, and some of those things are downright terrible. The only way you’re going to deal with them is to oppose them with counter-ideals, and as I wrote above, liberal centrists simply aren’t up to the task.