Even though Milo is a preening bitch with stupid hair who learned most of his journalistic skills from me but has now disappeared up his own bottom I have to admit that I still love him and that, what’s more, he has taught me a few useful things in return.
The main one is this: concede an inch of territory to the enemy and the enemy will destroy you. They are not reasonable. They are despicable. This is war.
If everyone on our side of the argument understood this we would have won this conflict long ago. Not only are we wittier, cleverer, better informed and more honest, unhypocritical and fundamentally likeable than the opposition – but we also have all the ammunition to win every battle we fight because reality has a conservative bias.
Unfortunately we have long laboured under a fatal weakness which has rendered all our advantages as of naught. Some call it “Cuckservatism”; others “a pathetic urge to be liked”; others “cleaving to the reasonable middle ground,” but however you anatomise it or describe it the result is the same. The enemy feeds on our weakness and gains in strength.
When you’re at Bastogne, surrounded by Nazis, the last thing you need is the guy twenty yards to your left abandoning his foxhole, allowing your entire company position to be outflanked. But this is what our own people do to us all the time.
Today, it’s our gallant comrade Brendan O’Neill’s turn to sell us short.
He has weighed into the Milo/Twitter/Leslie Jones debate and grabbed completely the wrong end of the stick with a piece entitled The Hounding Of Leslie Jones: Anti-PC Gone Mad.
Yep. Instead of recognising the business for what it is – a key battle in the liberal-left’s ongoing war on free speech – O’Neill has quixotically decided that the real villains of the piece are shady figures on the alt-right; and that the victim isn’t the innocent guy who got banned from Twitter, but the race-baiting cry-bully who engineered that ban.
The alt-right, those anti-PC, bedroom-bound fans of Trump and strangers to sexual intercourse, have finally lost the plot. Consider their hounding of Leslie Jones. Jones is a very funny African-American comedian and the only good thing in the otherwise flat, weird and mirth-free Ghostbusters reboot. Yet for the past 48 hours she has been subjected to vile racist abuse by alt-right tweeters and gamers and other assorted saddos for her part in what they view as the feministic crime of remaking Ghostbusters with a female cast. She has left Twitter. This might mark the moment when the alt-right went full racist, full berserk, full unhinged.
The alt-right angries, convinced the world is one big lefty, feminist plot to ruin your average white dude’s life, have been fuming about the new Ghostbusters for months. It’s a crime against their childhood memories of Bill Murray or something. So it was no surprise that following the movie’s release last week, they went on the attack against its director, Paul Feig, and four female stars (on Twitter, of course, not on the streets — most of these people haven’t seen sunlight since the last time Comic Con was in their local town). Theyreserved most of their venom for Ms Jones because… well, because she’s black, and it’s hilarious and super un-PC to abuse a black woman, right?
O’Neill is always worth reading, even when he’s wrong – which most of the time he isn’t. For complicated historical reasons, O’Neill likes to think of himself as a revolutionary Marxist but he’s on the right side of most issues more often than most Conservatives I know. From climate change to political correctness Brendan is invariably bang on the money because he’s intellectually rigorous, he approaches things from first principles and, because, damn it, if only he but knew it, he’s basically a conservatarian trapped in an earnest leftie’s body.
On this occasion, however, he done the equivalent of quitting the Spartan phalanx, sidling up to the Persians and saying: “Guys, guys, let’s patch up our differences, shall we? If I tell you the secret route to get round Thermopylae, how about you all get back into your ships and leave us alone?”
Or, if you prefer to imagine O’Neill’s collected earlier writings as a delicious, alcoholic fruit cocktail blending all sorts of wondrous, original, exquisitely chosen and recherche ingredients, then what he’s just done with this piece is pulled down his flies, whipped out his schlong and taken a good long horse-piss into the punch bowl.
No really. I’m probably being too polite.
In order to accept O’Neill’s bankrupt Belial thesis you would first have to accept things which patently are not true.
One is that Leslie Jones is a paragon of virtue, thespian talent and comedic genius, as well as the most cruelly-put upon person in the entire universe.
This she patently isn’t.
If any white person came up with tweets as racist as Jones’s they’d earn themselves an instant ban. What seems clear is that Jones has manipulated this whole ugly affair and feigned hurt and outrage as a desperate attempt to promote her dull unwatchable Ghostbusters reboot. The Twitter ban, as anyone even half way familiar with the story knows, has nothing to do with Milo’s provocation – and absolutely everything to do with the aversion liberal-lefties like Twitter’s Jack Dorsey have to robust free speech. Or at least, to robust free speech when it’s voiced by conservatives.
The next false assumption you’d have to accept in order for O’Neill’s thesis to work is his glib trivialisation of the whole Culture Wars debate. It suits O’Neill’s rhetorical cheat to belittle the alt-right’s cause – “one big lefty, feminist plot to ruin your average white dude’s life” “crime against their childhood memories of Bill Murray or something” – when, as well he knows, the problem is very real because it has been rigorously anatomised in excellent articles like this one in the Spectator on “Stepford Students“, which I suspect he probably read because he wrote it.
And the last big lie you’d have to swallow to take O’Neill’s sophistry seriously is to accept that there is some kind of moral equivalence between Social Justice Warriors and the people who goad them on Twitter and at sites like 4chan. To believe this you would have to believe that if someone punches you in the face and you defend yourself with equal vigour then you are somehow as bad as your aggressor.
Maybe O’Neill should read up on Gamergate. (Though not, I’d suggest on Wikipedia). What he then might understand is that the kids he chooses to malign as “anti-PC, bedroom-bound fans of Trump and strangers to sexual intercourse” are the people he ought to be defending to the hilt. Most of them, before Gamergate, didn’t even think of themselves as political.
They were just gamers who wanted to get on with playing games they enjoyed rather than be made to feel sexist or racist or homophobic or whatever by an industry hijacked by activists. Like Michael Douglas in Falling Down, they were ordinary guys who’d been pushed too far and decided: enough is enough!
Gamergate was a microcosm of a much broader phenomenon: the strangulation of our culture by creeping political correctness, a manifestation of Cultural Marxism whose essential purpose is to subvert and destroy Western Civilisation. It’s what Vox Day was fighting in his battle with the Hugos – the science fiction awards which discriminated horribly against writers of a right-wing or libertarian persuasion.
It’s what Rod Liddle was objecting to when once he teasingly reviewed a Midsummer Murders episode where the featured gipsies were, of course, charming, raggle-taggle folk in painted horse-drawn caravans rather than skanky, thieving pikies defecating in the villagers’ gardens. It’s what the Guardian and the BBC are sedulously endorsing every time they remind us after yet another terrorist atrocity that it’s “nothing to do with Islam.” It’s the reason for the rise and rise of Donald Trump – and probably for Brexit too.
So tentacular and all-encompassing is its smothering control of every aspect of our society, from the kind of food we eat (let me tell you, Hugh, precisely where you can shove your “sustainable” pollack and whiting) to the clothes it’s acceptable to wear (never mind that sweatshops represent to many in the Far East precisely the same route out of poverty that the woollen mills represented for starving British rural folk during the Industrial Revolution) , to the things we’re allowed to say to the way we travel and heat our homes, to the people we’re supposed to allow to become our fellow nationals, that if I were to list all of them here the piece would never end.
It includes: #blacklivesmatter; campaigners trying to stop rugby being played in schools because boys might get hurt; anything with the word “sustainability” in it; Caroline Criado Perez trying to get a woman, any woman, on British banknotes; the vacuous veneration of Mary Seacole; the fake UVA frat-house rape story; and, yes, the half-baked decision-making process that led to the abomination that is the Ghostbusters remake.
Milo and others focussed on Ghostbusters not because they are puerile, irresponsible, spiteful, show-off troublemakers – well, not only because of that – but because, unlike Brendan O’Neill in his abomination of an exercise in intellectually flabby SJW apologism, they totally get it.
What Milo and his fellow happy warriors totally get is that – as the great Andrew Breitbart was fond of saying – “politics is downstream from culture.”
That is, never mind who’s doing what at any given time in the White House or 10 Downing Street: the stuff that really shapes our lives and influences the behaviour of politicians and also affects our voting choices happens outside the political realm in the cultural one.
So when, for example, a Hollywood studio decides to do a politicised remake of a popular Eighties hit movie with an awful politically correct script and an all-female cast cracking lame jokes about how weak and sucky men are, it becomes a target worthy of destruction by the righteous because of the corrupt values it symbolises.
If you believe that the prime duty of entertainers is to entertain, and of businesses to generate profits for their shareholders, and of actors to be rewarded on the basis of ability and public demand rather than of possession of the correct chromosomes, then clearly abominations like the new Ghostbusters are much more than just a bad movie. They are an affront to several of the most fundamental principles of Western Civilization – including the one that protects our inalienable right not to have feminazi shit shoved down our gullets by PC commissars just because they think it’s good for us…
But Twitter would prefer it if you didn’t point this stuff out. Same goes for Facebook. Same goes for the whole of the liberal establishment and – more’s the pity – a fair chunk of the conservative one too. This has always been the way of intolerant ‘progressive’ types – if there’s an argument you don’t like then shut it down. Which, of course, is what Twitter has attempted to do with this horribly counterproductive ban on Milo. It has censored him not because his arguments were bad but because they were too, damned good.
More to the point they were too damned effective.
More than anyone out there save perhaps Donald Trump, Milo understands that if the right is truly to win the political wars it must first win the culture wars. And in order to that it has to throw out of the window every last piece of conventional wisdom on how to win the conservative argument.
Conventional wisdom, ie old wisdom, has it that conservative politicians should not give straight answers for fear of offending someone; that their arguments should be nuanced and respectful of opposing points of view; that anything that smacks of radicalism, or – heaven forfend – extremism should be shunned; that right wing politics have to be defended and expounded much more sensitively than left wing politics in order to persuade swing voters that they’re not buying anything too nasty…
Milo, Trump, Cernovich, Vox Day, Lauren Southern, @pizzapartyben, Steven Crowder and all the other alt-right crusaders just don’t give a shit about any of that stuff.
They want to offend because the enemy deserves offending – and because it’s funny and fun. They like telling it like it is because it avoids the tedium of having to second guess their every utterance – and anyway their audience prefers it straight. They don’t bother with nuance because people associate it with compromise and equivocation and wanky articles by people like Brendan O’Neill essentially arguing that actually Good is just as bad as Evil because, well it just is, obviously it is, because to argue otherwise wouldn’t be balanced and fair.
Quite a lot of people on the traditional right hate this. They find it embarrassing and cartoonish and unsophisticated and vulgar.
But that’s their problem and it shouldn’t be our problem. In military terms, they’re the equivalent of World War I cavalry officers sneering at the ghastliness of the hideous new thing called a tank. I sympathise with their position – I’m quite old school myself, plus I love horses – and many of them I like and admire, but they’re still an irrelevance because their tactics don’t work any more. If they ever did work, which I’m not sure they did.
For too long the Alinskyite left has run rings round the right by refusing to play nice, invariably hitting below the belt, doing whatever is necessary to win the fight. And for too long the right has responded by going: “C’mon guys. We’re not that bad. We do have our nicer points. Look here’s an article I wrote earlier in which I clearly demonstrate through the medium of saying nice things about black people how totally unracist I am..”
Not any more.