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Culture War Roundup for the week of December 12, 2022

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Elon Musk has suspended a slew of liberal journalists and pundits from Twitter. It is, as Benjamin Braddoc puts it, a red wedding for the liberal establishment. I initially believed that he was just the "controlled" opposition of the deep state, obviously he's stepped on way too many toes for that. This imo underscores an important truth to the ultra principled who believe in free speech absolutism and neutral institutions, the overton window won't shift the other way just to punish the "heretics" who've assailed this sacred virtue. Social media, our Frankenstein, has made it insanely easier for mob rule to influence culture (not that it wasn't already).

I still don't believe we're witnessing complete course reversal, but this could just be the first legitimate W for the right.

EDIT: It looks like he's lifting the suspension.

I still don't believe we're witnessing complete course reversal, but this could just be the first legitimate W for the right.

It's not, though, and the people crowing about it don't understand how the game is played. And I'm not saying that because I'm butthurt that some journo I've never heard of that's supposedly 'on my side' is the unlucky ox du jour.

When the left deplatforms someone, they genuinely believe (rightly or wrongly) that they're righteously fighting racism/inequality/injustice. They're saving lives from COVID. They're supporting the downtrodden in society and giving them a chance to improve their lives. Contrary to the conflict theorists, it's neither arbitrary nor intended to make 'disfavored groups' suffer.

When Elon (or some figure on the right) deplatforms someone, 1) best case, he's having to grapple with the realities that many people said he would (thus the smugness) or 2) worst case, he's being driven by petty personal or 'own the libs' revanchism. The small fraction of principled libertarians are slinking off, having lost again, while the conservatives pretending to be principled libertarians are cheering the fact that the libs are getting owned.

They miss the fact that really winning, and not just eking out a transitory term in the white house, requires articulating a vision for the future that wins the hearts and minds of the people. And it needs to be more inspiring than 'we're going to keep things the way they are/turn back the clock to the 1970s/1950s/1776!' People need to believe that tomorrow can be better than today. It needs to be more than 'I'm really angry after the last 5 years and after forfeiting all my morals I just want to hurt my outgroup,' which, I don't mean to pick on that commenter personally, but that's the vibe I get from most of the conservatives here.

And you know what? There's plenty of room to articulate a vision for the future that is better than what democrats have to offer. I wish someone would try, and we could see two visions of utopia competing for popular support rather than the depressing political morass we've been languishing in for the last decade. Something has to change; I'd welcome any thoughts people might have on what that might be.

There's plenty of room to articulate a vision for the future that is better than what democrats have to offer. I wish someone would try, and we could see two visions of utopia competing for popular support rather than the depressing political morass we've been languishing in for the last decade.

I think maybe left type people misunderstanding right type people's vision for the future. The idea isn't that things shouldn't get better, it's that things are already getting better on their own, capitalism and investment are making all of society more wealthy and we need to avoid killing the golden goose responsible. Tomorrow will be better than today just implicitly so long as we don't do some foolish nonsense like destroy the whole system in a frenzied desire to make sure wealth is equally distributed among the different hair colors or dismantling our industrial base because it offends people that those who invested critical dollars early get the biggest return.

To conservatives progress is sound investment and carefully maintained stability for that investment to grow. Like a carefully planted garden. And to conservatives much of the progressive proposals are of the "Brondo has want plants crave" variety. Conservatives see themselves are pleading with angry short sighted people to leave the plants alone, it's better to eat the fruits than the seeds.

Just so you know it's Brawndo*. Good reference though.