A lot of folks are asking me why I keep harping on liberal authoritarianism. Kidding, one of you is. Look, we know what the rightwing is and stands for, so there’s zero mystery there. They are irredeemables. And, yes, the only group who hasn’t figured this out yet—on the entire planet—is our republican friends themselves. Further proof comes from comedian John Cleese’s recent diatribe, citing the Dunning-Kruger effect as the main culprit (or see my related coverage from the early Pleistocene, here). Cleese said, “If you’re stupid, how could you possibly know how stupid you are? …this explains, not only Hollywood but almost the entirety of Fox News.” Rightwingers, nixed the Fox News part and repackaged the Cleese quote to make it look as if he was solely directing scorn at liberals. Laughably, this reworked meme rifled across rightwing social media, eventually arriving in my box as well. This only proves Cleese’s point, in a rather spectacular fashion. So I understand why liberals are so angry. In 2021, republicans have a lot to atone for and yet seem to be the only ones wholly oblivious to this fact, but that doesn’t mean we can lose sight of the Constitution. The Atlantic is finally covering this rising leftist version of fascism, which means, yeah, it’s happening.
Most psychologists historically deny even the existence of such a personality trait on the left. Sure, basic aspects of fascism seem a better fit for our republican friends, but it doesn’t change the fact that a liberal version is fomenting.
Here’s The Atlantic’s Sally Satel quoting the researcher Thomas Costello:
“Researchers found some common traits between left-wing and right-wing authoritarians, including a ‘preference for social uniformity, prejudice towards different others, willingness to wield group authority to coerce behavior, cognitive rigidity, aggression and punitiveness towards perceived enemies, outsized concern for hierarchy, and moral absolutism.’” And she also quotes Rutgers’ psychologist Lee Jussim, “For 70 years, the lore in the social sciences has been that authoritarianism was to be found exclusively on the political right.”
Satel’s article seems to blame professor-bias (my term) for missing the mark, aka scholars tend to be leftish, so there’s some collegiate implicit bias abound.
I came to a different conclusion:
“What do you focus on, some liberal folks not in power who want to cancel shit, or republican folks who elect a man who very likely stashed a copy of Mein Kempf in the WH nightstand?”
The above bit is unverified, but, like Maher often claims but I know it’s true.
Admittedly, we do need to hold our researchers accountable. I’m certain there is some form of elitism-bias occurring and we do not need the stench of politicization creeping further into academia. I believe there’s two primary factors here: 1.) academic laziness in the peer-review process is on the rise, just as idiocy itself is cresting in every corner of this globe, and 2.) more and more dirty money is now driving research.
Here’s why I personally hyper-focused on the GOP for the last two decades: let’s say Godzilla (R) and his smoke-ring-hurling son, Godzuki (D), are attacking Washington; to which invader would you focus your energy and resources? This is my excuse. I stand by me decision to fear and concentrate on the King of the Monsters.
Andrew Sullivan has waffled on this issue, but even he seemed to agree with the other 99% of his ilk who felt Trump would require two terms to outright destroy our democracy. As for the demise of our institutions, I am about the only one who clearly stated that “one term would suffice.”
Today, Sully gets it:
“The question is not whether Trump has the competence to build a de facto dictatorship, it is whether he has so eroded core democratic values within one of our major parties that this country is likely to enter a period of civil conflict over the very legitimacy of our system in future elections, a period of violence and mayhem and rule-breaking that could so easily lead to the rapid unraveling of the entire system of liberal democracy.”
But the liberal response to this growing threat to our planet and the current assault on our democracy is pathetic. Identity politics? Safe space, culture warriors? These movements are all collapsing under the weight of their own hypocrisy. I understand and support BLM, every American should, but the rest of this stuff really pales in comparison to, well, every other major issue of our time. This is not a coordinated response to a clear and present danger. We are amidst the sixth mass extinction, an extinction that very likely includes humans, and this is your battle cry? #MeToo! WTF? The response of my liberal home team—well, let’s just say they are no longer my home team—is this: please learn to prioritize in the face of our own extinction. My rant against the rise of ‘idiot compassion’, here. If it makes you feel ‘safer’ to paint me as a defender of abusers, please do.
“You probably think this song is about you.”
The mandated vaccines-across-the-globe thing is not a good look for the progressive cause either. It has further delegitimatized and weakened the liberal agenda, not just in the US but elsewhere. Australia is a particularly screaming shitshow. I come from a land brown under? It’s great that most of the industrialized west is poised to hand the keys back over to populists. What’s the worst that can happen? I’m vaccinated and think people holding out are fools, however, mandating this little venture comes with a host of constitutional conundrums. Sure, we all lined up for our polio vaccine in the 1950s, but those Happy Days are over. We are all now in the failed spinoff sequel. Phony Loves Fauci?
There are two major concerns about such mandates. If you haven’t already, please check Naomi Wolf’s warning. Do I think her scenario will happen? Not necessarily, but the scary part is how it could. By coordinating information and technology, the government can make any individual’s life a living hell if so desired. Look, in the old days we just followed the recommendation of The World Health Organization, or the like, but even that is now hopeless as everything is irreparably politicized by this broken nation of ours.
Second, I would never want to line up for a mandatory vaccine under an R president. Here’s how that second scenario might go down:
“Everyone line up for the horse dewormer vaccination.”
—President Cleetus (R-NE)
“Everyone line up for the bleach injection, which will kill that Kung Flu.”
—President Assclown Hitler Jr., who just bought the makers of Clorox (R-TX)
Scenario 3 (the most likely):
“My brother-in-law’s company, Bob Pharma, has a new vackseen approved by the NRA.”
—President Grifty McMafiosotype (R-FL)
Is any of this registering …to vote? A mandatory vaccination issued by a republican commander in chief? No thank you. I don’t trust them as far as I can throw William Barr. This is why, today, we are so dangerously close to an outright civil war, never mind how republicans feel similarly when smart people are in charge.
Why are you so, anti identity politics and cancel, Zano?
For one thing, it’s why Clinton lost. Not the only thing, but it didn’t help …and then, if you recall, 2016 to 2020 really didn’t help. We could have stayed ahead of this curve by simply focusing on our impending doom as a species. For what? Some unconstitutional version of personal development? Brought to you by damaged people? Great idea. Per my last article, liberals want to hijack personal growth, aka egalitarianism done badly.
Alan Watts once said, “If you don’t go crazy at regular intervals, you will eventually go insane.” Today, those regular intervals will land you in HR, or in Facebook jail, or cancelled outright. Soon, when anti-racism tribunals are created, you will also face fines and or imprisonment for any perceived thought crimes, deemed racist. Libs believe themselves to be perfect spiritual animals, who can sense microaggressions down to the pre-neuronal level. This will only trigger a rather dramatic political pendulum swing, which will ring in the next republican president and end us outright. I don’t know how we avoid that outcome at this point, so keep up the good work? If Biden is already toast, so are we. Besides, as Watts also noted, “Part of the joy of life comes from the process of trying to get rid of evil.” Personal development has the word right in there, for your enjoyment.
You already predicted Trump’s term would end us, Zano.
Actually, I didn’t. Back in like 2006 I said the next R president, post Dubya, would end us. Enter The Donald. And in my estimation the wheels of this particular bus have already come off, on cue. If this were a cartoon, the US is hovering in mid-air and dares not look down. But there’s an old saying, hope springs eternal.
But your own headline reads: why there is no hope.
True, but it gives me a chance to crack some jokes *cough*. I suppose I should add some of those.
“Nothing is very much fun, anymore.”