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May 05, 2021

The Conservative Case for Treating Conservatives Like Enemies and Leftists Like Lovers

Doc_Zero discusses the great schism between the Capitol Class pseudoright and actual conservatives: The absolute preference for the Capitol Class pseudoright for the company of leftists, and their absolute dedication to remaining personally within the left's zone of acceptability, no matter what it might cost politically or nationally.

John Hayward @Doc_0

One of the great schisms in conservatism and GOP politics - a key difference between passive and active conservatism, peacetime vs. wartime - is whether or not the Left is credited with having good intentions. The Left, of course, never reciprocates this concession.

Unfortunately, the Left is dedicated to attacking the very moral and philosophical pillars of the American republic and Western civilization, and they utterly dominate culture and academia, so conceding good intentions is a zero-sum game.

This is why so many GOP politicians and conservative pundits are of little use in pitched political battle, or eagerly turn against other conservatives. Having conceded the good intentions of the Left, they have also tacitly agreed to question the intentions of their own side.
John Hayward

Some of the more absurd pronouncements of NeverTrump types over the past few years can be viewed in this light. They made their peace with left-wing radicalism and do what they can to apologize for it. They internalize the Left's critique of less pliable conservatives.

Some of this is cynical self-interest, a desire to keep booking options open in Left-dominated media, to remain marketable as a "acceptable conservative" who politely critiques the dominant left-wing ideology without seriously threatening it.
Some of this is cultural, a consequence of living in the Beltway, coastal media hubs, or academic strongholds and inheriting their assumptions about the Deplorables out in flyover country. Some is personal, as friendships are made with influential left-wingers.

Whatever the reasons, it all boils down to that fundamental concession that the Left means well, that its civilization-destroying agenda is somehow justified or understandable, that its policy ideas might be a little wrong-headed but its heart is in the right place.

That wouldn't be so bad if the sentiment was reciprocated - but it most certainly is not. Not even a little. The Left institutionally believes that all conservative ideas, all resistance to the progressive agenda, is evil. They routinely question the humanity of opponents.

That's why the Left is fluent at using populism, while the Right was bullied and intimidated into disdaining it. The Left speaks with the utter conviction of a perpetual moral crusade, treating politics like a religion. Its enemies are devils and sinners, dissent is sacrilege.

The Left wins by any means necessary and uses compulsive force to shape politics. If they lose a battle, it's because evil forces lied and cheated, and it's only a temporary setback. You can't maintain that worldview while conceding your opponents are good people who mean well.

Passive conservatives accept the Left's moral framework, abandoning the most important momentum-shifting battles as irrevocably lost, and focus on a few policy quibbles that can be debated without challenging the Left's core premises.
John Hayward

They speak of wanting what the Left wants, but having different ideas about the best way to get there. They are fluent in the language of the Left and accept its judgments about which people, ideas, and tactics are out of bounds for the Right. They see no hills worth dying on.
John Hayward

Having conceded righteousness to the Left, they can imagine no righteous conservative crusade, no uncompromising conservative position, nothing that would shift the momentum of politics away from its perpetual swing to the Left. Everything the Right holds is negotiable.

"Standing athwart history and yelling stop" meant something very different at the beginning of that history. Decades on, it means yelling stop instead of DOING anything that would stop it. The difference between argument and action is belief in your own intentions. /end

National Review continues to sell out the right for their own personal advantage in remaining acceptable to the wealthy urban Progressive Yuppie set who are their peers (or at least the people who they wish to make their peers).

What do we gain from this transaction? I understand what the National Review cucklings gain; what do we gain?

Happening now: Thanks to You Don't Want to Know, the SN15 is getting closer to launch... maybe. It's been scrubbed a few times for weather.

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