Some political commentators actually worth reading or listening to:
Jimmy Dore, Chris Hedges, Ben Norton, Caitlin Johnstone, Glenn Greenwald, Tucker Carlson, Brian Becker, Pat Buchanan, Rania Khalek, John Kiriakou, Abby Martin, Robbie Martin, Adam Proctor, Eugene Puryear, Aimee Terese.
From Marxists to paleoconservatives, they offer a range of alternative perspectives to the FOX-CNN-MSNBC axis of bullshit.
This research more or less confirms the findings of the “Hidden Tribes” researchers with some slight variations.
By Carl M. Cannon
Real Clear Politics
“Every difference of opinion,” Thomas Jefferson warned in his first inaugural address, “is not a difference of principle.” Speaking to his countrymen after an election every bit as bitter as the one that put Donald J. Trump in the White House, Jefferson was trying to soothe the reigning animosity between the nation’s two dominant political parties. “We are all Republicans,” he added. “We are all Federalists.”
Not anymore. In 21st century America, any notion that election results end the argument, however temporarily, is an anachronism. So, too, is the conceit that a nation this large and diverse is divided neatly along “50-50” lines, with half of America’s 253 million adults supporting Democrats, and the other half backing Republicans.
Today, slightly more than one-fourth of registered voters in the United States have political views and social attitudes placing them in the camp of the “Resistance” — to President Trump and the Trump-era Republican Party.
This is one of the five American “tribes” identified in a sweeping new public opinion survey conducted by RealClear Opinion Research, a new service offered by RealClearPolitics. The survey of 2,463 registered voters, conducted Sept. 18-28, was overseen by John Della Volpe, co-founder of SocialSphere Inc., a public opinion and analytics firm based in Cambridge, Mass.
The research that is cited in this article, along with the “Hidden Tribes” report that came out recently, seems to confirm what I have long suspected, i.e. that “political correctness” is the ideology of the mostly white, educated, affluent, left-wing of the upper middle class. This is probably one of the more interesting parts of this article:
“In fact, white liberals are well to the left of the black electorate on some racial issues.
Take the issue of discrimination as a factor holding back African-American advancement. White liberals are to the left of black Democrats, placing a much stronger emphasis than African-Americans on the role of discrimination and much less emphasis on the importance of individual effort.
Among white liberals, according to Pew survey data collected in 2017, 79.2 percent agreed that “racial discrimination is the main reason why many black people can’t get ahead these days.” 18.8 percent agreed that “blacks who can’t get ahead in this country are mostly responsible for their own condition,” a 60.4 point difference, according to a detailed analysis of the Pew data provided the Times by Zach Goldberg, a doctoral candidate in political science at Georgia State University.
Among blacks, 59.9 percent identified discrimination as the main deterrent to upward mobility for African-Americans, and 32.0 percent said blacks were responsible for their condition — in other words, blacks are more conservative than white liberals on this issue.?”
By Thomas B. Edsall
New York Times
It seems that the “exhausted majority” would be the natural constituency for ATS…if only the “exhausted majority” had any kind of critique of the state and/or capitalism (and, yes, I’m fine the Karl Hess version of capitalism).
By Michael Sean Winters
National Catholic Reporter
A column by David Brooks this week pointed to an interesting new survey undertaken by the group More in Common. Titled “Hidden Tribes,” the report, as Brooks rightly notes, “understands that American politics is no longer about what health care plan you support. It’s about identity, psychology, moral foundations and the dynamics of tribal resentment.”
Brooks’ central conclusion is correct: He thinks the core problem with American politics is that it is dominated by the two sets of rich white people who inhabit the ideological extremes, groups the report dubs “Progressive Activists” and “Devoted Conservatives.” Unfortunately for those of us on the left, the first group is only 8 percent of the population and while the second group is but 6 percent, the next closest group, “Traditional Conservatives” identifies 19 percent of the nation’s population and tends to side with the “Devoted Conservatives” on almost all issues. These are the “Wings” that set the tone and the parameters of public debate.
By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit
Exile in Happy Valley
This blog is a lot of things to me. It’s art. It’s therapy. It’s a bullhorn from which I can shout my radical diktats to a small horde of loyal followers whom I lovingly refer to as my dearest motherfuckers. Hopefully it’s a launching pad for a future revolution that will liberate poor people once and for all from the shackles of big government and big business (or do I repeat myself.) But when it all comes down to it, lets face it, I’m here to bitch. That’s why once a year I drop all artistic and political pretenses and simply make a list of all the people who piss me off the most. I call it my shitlist and 2018 has provided me with no shortage of shit. Now if I put everyone that chaps my ass on this list it would be longer than fucking Gravity’s Rainbow, so I’ll just pick a handful in no specific order to roast like pigs on a spit. So here it is, dearest motherfuckers, My Shitlist 2018.
John McCain– After a lifetime as America’s most celebrated war monger, the one thing that John could do for the world, the only act of mercy that that rapacious murder junkie should have been capable of performing is to finally do us all a big goddamn favor and just fucking die already. But no, John McCain even has to die like a fucking dick. Over a week, a goddamn week of funerals and parades and tributes and memorials and animal sacrifices and imperial orgies, all of them carefully planned by that ego-drunken light bulb factory bomber, to celebrate his foul legacy of homicide advocacy like a goddamn pharaoh. By day five of this ordeal, I was screaming at the TV set “Just give me a goddamn shovel! I’ll bury the cunt myself!!” All I have left to say to the first dead man to make this list is bon voyage you putrid butcher of civilians. Tell Satan that Armageddon’s going great.
The recently released study indicating the deep unpopularity of political correctness, as well as the marginal nature of both PC partisans and the hard right, carries certain implications for the ATS strategy and program. First, there is no need whatsoever to capitulate or kowtow to PC, and that the strategy that I have been pursing for years now of bashing PC to the max is a winning strategy (in fact, it’s probably brought me a larger audience than anything else I have ever done). However, a second implication is that the far left and far right are only peripheral and unpopular elements that are soundly rejected by most Americans. But the catch is that the rival ruling class factions attempt to build a loyal base for themselves by pandering to far left and far right extremists. Therefore, those of use who are committed to an authentically revolutionary perspective must necessarily position ourselves as a radical center that not only rejects the ruling class in its entirety, but also rejects the marginal right and marginal left with equal fervor. When it comes to the Antifa, “anarcho”-Marxists, neo-Commies, PC progressives, Alt-Right/Lite, WN/NS, neo-fascists, or religious theocrats, our attitude should simply be, “Fuck ’em. We don’t ’em.” Instead, our target audience should be the “exhausted majority” who are tired of both ruling class malfeasance, and the crap on the margins.
Kyle Kulinski offers a good critique of why right-wing critics of the Left typically fail, but regrettably Kyle merely wants to steer the conversation toward his own Berniebro/neo-Rooseveltian perspective.
These Tucker Carlson-types are pretty good at criticizing the Left. But they regrettably use their critique to steer their audience toward the Republican-oriented right-wing. It’s possible to hate Bolsheviks without wanting to preserve the Tsar.
By Umair Haque
America is ripping itself apart. So much so that I couldn’t help but notice another strange, gruesome, and bizarre turning point in American collapse today. On the heels of Trump mocking Dr Ford, many famous and powerful right-wing extremists were bellowing, for the first time I can remember, in unison, a shared, loud, and explicit support of real, physical violence — “I love fighting!! What kind of man hasn’t been in a fight? Not a real one, I’ll tell you that!” Violence is virtuous, healthy, ennobling, in other words. My friends, this is far, far outside the lines of discourse we should expect from a civilized society. These are the kinds of things the sneering thugs and grandees who become the proud lieutenants and captains in the armies of dictators tend to say just before a democracy collapses. So while all that might strike you as inconsequential, I think it’s indicative of a deeper and truer malaise — because, of course, on the heels of the Kavanaugh debacle, it is a justification for the idea that anything should go. But can anything go in a democracy?
Americans don’t agree on two things anymore. Personhood and violence. They don’t agree that all people are people, or should be, or even can be — and therefore, many Americans appear to believe in many or most of the following things. It’s perfectly acceptable to rape women if you can get away with it, it’s perfectly fine to put children in camps, it’s perfectly desirable to suggest, believe, “know that” some groups are inherently superior to others, it’s quite alright to want to ethnically cleanse a society, it’s perfectly healthy to “debate” ideas like authoritarianism and fascism (as if two world wars hadn’t settled the question). Need I go on?
By J.D. Tuccille
After last week’s hearings on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, it became pretty obvious that the questions, answers, tears, and grandstanding had changed few, if any, minds. “Today felt very much like an update of the 1850s: 2 very distinct parts of US that no longer care to even fake that they respect or value the other,” tweeted Ronald Brownstein of CNN and The Atlantic.
The 1850s? We know how that ended: badly. Why not head off continued conflict by letting these “very distinct parts” of the U.S. be even more distinct—so much so that there’s less for them to battle over. We could even break with the past and try political solutions that let people live side by side without submitting to the authority of opponents they neither respect not value.
Brownstein wasn’t the only observer to notice the political breach—a breach that appears to be growing.
“It is hard to believe that Democrats and Republicans were watching the same hearings,” the YouGov polling firm marveled while reporting that Democrats disbelieved Kavanaugh and believed Ford, his accuser, in almost exactly the same numbers that Republicans disbelieved Ford and believed Kavanaugh.
As I have long suspected, PC is primarily the domain of the left-wing of the upper middle class (roughly the same socioeconomic demographic that Jacobinism and Communism came from).
By Yascha Mounk
On social media, the country seems to divide into two neat camps: Call them the woke and the resentful. Team Resentment is manned—pun very much intended—by people who are predominantly old and almost exclusively white. Team Woke is young, likely to be female, and predominantly black, brown, or Asian (though white “allies” do their dutiful part). These teams are roughly equal in number, and they disagree most vehemently, as well as most routinely, about the catchall known as political correctness.
Reality is nothing like this. As scholars Stephen Hawkins, Daniel Yudkin, Miriam Juan-Torres, and Tim Dixon argue in a report published Wednesday, “Hidden Tribes: A Study of America’s Polarized Landscape,” most Americans don’t fit into either of these camps. They also share more common ground than the daily fights on social media might suggest—including a general aversion to PC culture.
By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit
Exile in Happy Valley
I’ve always found it absurd that white nationalists bitch the loudest about identity politics when they’re the winy snowflakes who fucking invented the goddamn concept. White isn’t even a race for Christ sake. There is no Whitestan. There is no traditional white tribe. It’s a class concept designed to justify an oligarchy without a royal bloodline. I’m pretty sure that the first “white” guys were just a bunch of slave owners who settled on the superiority of their lack of melanin after they finished taking inventory on eye color and penis size and came to the conclusion that skin was the one thing they had in common that the field hands couldn’t lay claim to. In today’s divided states of America identity politics are mostly used to keep different genres of poor people at each others throats while the one percent rapes their wives (often literally) and pollutes their land.
By Yascha Mounk
James A. Lindsay, Helen Pluckrose, and Peter Boghossian, the scholars behind the hoax.
Over the past 12 months, three scholars—James Lindsay, Helen Pluckrose, and Peter Boghossian—wrote 20 fake papers using fashionable jargon to argue for ridiculous conclusions, and tried to get them placed in high-profile journals in fields including gender studies, queer studies, and fat studies. Their success rate was remarkable: By the time they took their experiment public late on Tuesday, seven of their articles had been accepted for publication by ostensibly serious peer-reviewed journals. Seven more were still going through various stages of the review process. Only six had been rejected.
We’ve been here before.
The best take on the Kavanaugh mess I’ve seen to date.
By Avens O’Brien
I haven’t commented much on the whole Kavanaugh issue. I have so many thoughts, and they aren’t perfectly organized or suitable for an article. I wrote this rant out last night while really exhausted, I made minor edits this afternoon and I’m just posting it, because it’s burning a hole in my mind and I’m actually like… angry/sad/disappointed, which isn’t very common for me. And yeah, I’m bothered by his confirmation, but more so about the entire process. About how we got here.
Press TV. Watch the interview here.
Trump considering dismissal of Mattis There had been speculations for long that US President Donald Trump does not see eye to eye with his Defense Secretary James Mattis on a series of issues.
They include US ties with NATO, US military presence in South Korea and Trumps decision to pull out of the Iran nuclear deal.
The media in Washington are now quoting informed sources as saying that President Trump is considering a decision to fire his defense chief.
Antony Sammeroff, co-host of the Scottish Liberty Podcast, argues that the idea of a Universal Basic Income is a very bad one, and for reasons you may not have thought of. Listen to Antony’s interview with Tom Woods here. Download the book here.
By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit
Exile in Happy Valley
Regardless of how you feel about the son of a bitch (or his apparently abortion-shy bitch mother), it’s becoming pretty hard to ignore the fact that the establishment, personified by both major parties, the legacy media, and the so called intelligence community, fucking hates President Donald J. Trump. With the New York Times latest revelation of an inter-administration resistance and Bob Woodword’s latest tabloid airport flyswatter, the movement to remove or contain our red-headed stepchild of an Electoral College despot has never been more vibrant. This puts me in a pretty weird position, not just because I’ve devoted my life to bitch slapping bigots like the Donald and upsetting the fanged mandarins of the establishment who so oppose him but because I find it strange that these fellow swamp critters despise each other so damn much.
Some of this is obviously theater. Donald Trump ran a successful campaign largely on trashing the Fourth Estate that Middle-America has come to despise for their impressive track record of fooling them into unwinnable wars and shitty trade deals. And the Fourth Estate made this campaign possible with their round the clock coverage of the free-wheeling MAGA circus. Every time the press attacks Trump he gets to play the role of the anti-establishment victim that his fans identify with. And every time Trump makes some vaguely fascist empty threat against the mass media they get to play the role of the embattled crusaders for truth. In both cases, Trump sees his approval numbers go up and the press sees their ratings go up with them. It’s a mutually abusive, codependent relationship straight out of a Dr. Phil rerun.
By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit
Exile in Happy Land
Political correctness is a fucking bust. It may have started with the best of intentions but so was the Russian Revolution and both ended in bourgeois tyranny. Political correctness has been more or less the law of the zeitgeist since the early Eighties when the radical feminists teamed up with the puritanical Reaganites to poop the raucous party of the Seventies, after the CIA unleashed AIDS to kill all the fun faggots (I’m only half-kidding). And in the proceeding decades the PC revolution has achieved absolutely nothing. Black and brown people are still poor as dirt. Women and femmes are still roundly violated on a daily basis. And the prison state has never been stronger.
The only thing political correctness really achieved was making it easier for bigots to hide behind the facade of good manners. Based on policy alone, the Clintonian Democrats clearly despise brown and queer people as much as those knuckle-draggers in the alt-right, they just know how to cover their ass with careful newspeak like “super-predators” and empty gestures to people who disgusted them three weeks ago when they weren’t politically viable. Personally, I’ll take an open bigot like David Duke over some squishy closet-basher like Alec Baldwin any day of the week. At least that silicone supremacist will call me faggot to my face.
So the current backlash against the malign influence of political correctness in not only totally natural, it’s also totally necessary. But that doesn’t mean you have to be a fucking dick. The reality is that marginalized individuals such as myself do have plenty of reasons to be pissed off and straight white cis-folk could strongly benefit from learning why and realizing that their mainstream cache does afford them some privileges that the rest of us don’t have. I’m willing to bet that most of you can enter a public restroom without having to seriously consider the possibility that somebody might set you on fire for having the wrong genitalia. But nothing gets solved without conversation, so I’ve decided to put together a few suggestions on how to be politically incorrect without being a total dick.