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Will Congress finally consider some gun control legislation?


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#51
Carrie Mathison

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Let's be fair though, the GOP is made up of terrible faction types too-- the fundamentalist Christians, the family values tea party hate-mongers, and big business lobbyist-slaves.

The idea of a fiscally conservative, socially modern, small-government Republican is just as rare as the perfect Dem you're looking for.

 

Sure, but the difference is those people don't have much power in the party, and they also are not driving popular culture and mainstream society.  Pretty much everyone just sees them as kinda silly, even the rest of the GOP.

 

On the second point (as to influence in culture), I don't think I need to type much on this.  The country is not becoming more religious, especially of the evangelical mold.  This group of people, especially by younger generations, is seen as, at best, a bizarre curiosity.  Now compare that to the increasing influence SJWs have on the national discourse, in the news media, in the entertainment industry, upon popular culture.  There is practically a de facto speech code that now exists due to their influence.  In some industries and areas of the country, you will absolutely not get hired if it becomes known you supported Trump or if you don't support the "acceptable views", you know, like diversity in the workplace is the most important thing ever, multiculturalism is the greatest thing ever, bla bla bla.  Now if you've already been hired, expect to be socially ostracized if your support for Trump becomes known.  Pretty sure that doesn't happen if you admit to not going to church Tank.  No one gives a f-ck.  Actually, on the contrary, it's probably considered a plus.  I've worked in some pretty conservative workplaces and no one has ever given a f-ck that I am not religious.  No one asks, no one cares.  (in liberal workplaces, it would of course be expected).  But can you imagine if I worked for some Bay Area startup or whatever and wore a "Make America Great Again" hat to work?  Well, first thing that would happen is people would get triggered and start having seizures and have to go to safe spaces and start playing with play doh to get their blood pressure down, etc.  And once the excitement passed?  Fired.

 

Now on the first point (that these people don't have influence in the party), Trump proved this.  He didn't even try to pretend to be religious and he still overwhelmingly won the evangelical vote.  Their preferred candidate was actually Huckabee and he didn't even make it past Iowa.

 

Now the big business types do have power, but there's a fair amount of a diversity of thought within that group, and the group itself is split among different factions.  Otherwise Jeb might've won the nomination.

 

In the GOP, there is nothing quite like the Dem militant groupthink on identity politics.  Maybe the closest thing is having to be 'pro-life' to win the GOP nomination, but even on that, you can sorta bullsh-t on the issue and flip flop on it.  Romney did it, Trump did it, Bush Sr did it... sh-t, come to think of it, the only GOP candidate in the last 50 years that might've actually been pro-life was Bush Jr.  Maybe Reagan.



#52
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 CM, I don't know if you are playing Devil's advocate or really believe this, but  so much in your last post I just flat out disagree with you on. 

 

 

 

Sure, but the difference is those people don't have much power in the party, and they also are not driving popular culture and mainstream society.  Pretty much everyone just sees them as kinda silly, even the rest of the GOP.....
Now on the first point (that these people don't have influence in the party), Trump proved this.  He didn't even try to pretend to be religious and he still overwhelmingly won the evangelical vote.  Their preferred candidate was actually Huckabee and he didn't even make it past Iowa. .....Now the big business types do have power, but there's a fair amount of a diversity of thought within that group, and the group itself is split among different factions.  Otherwise Jeb might've won the nomination.

 

 

What? The current Congress pretty much is made up of a lot of Tea Party types, left-overs from 2010 forward.  Trump's current cabinet, and those who advise him are made up of literally nothing BUT big business types.  And I think it is a mistake to think that just because evangelicals voted Trump, they don't care about religion or that they are shrinking in influence.  2012 gave the GOP Romney, and let's not forget Pence, who is very religious, was the compromise for a lot of evangelicals to accept Trump.  Huckabee has been running for president, or the religious types in the GOP have been trying to get him to run since forever.  You still have guys like Santorum, Ted Cruz, Kasich, etc have considerable sway in the GOP.  Hell, if you go back to the campaign, once Trump stumped in certain parts of the country, on went the religious hat.  

 

Also, other than the VA, what has Trump done for the lower and middle class up to this point? EVERYTHING from the XL Pipeline on (to the detriment of the Native American people in Standing Rock I might add....and I was for the pipeline, had it been re-routed) he has signed, has been about big business. So, don't tell me that the GOP isn't influenced by the Christian Right, big business advocates, and the tea party. Trump's election, and beating out the other candidates was more about defeating Hillary at all costs (something all 3 factions agreed on...hell, it got your vote!) and the abysmal, unexciting, and underwhelming candidates that  the GOP fielded in 2016, and has done so since the Bush years.

 

 

 

The country is not becoming more religious, especially of the evangelical mold.  This group of people, especially by younger generations, is seen as, at best, a bizarre curiosity.

Mostly agree with that, but younger generations ARE becoming more conservative, or at least becoming more vocal about being conservative if they already are, in some parts of the country.  

 

 

 

Now compare that to the increasing influence SJWs have on the national discourse, in the news media, in the entertainment industry, upon popular culture.  There is practically a de facto speech code that now exists due to their influence.

 

This is new?  It's been going on since the 1960s.  Mind you, I do not agree with the term SJW here, and what you call SJW, I call political correctness in some instances, in other instances, it's called cultural sensitivity.  Also, the entertainment industry is a lot more diverse and includes points of view other than the dominant culture now than even 20 years ago, so yeah, you are going to get more opinions and points of view, because the industry is less homogeneous.  Now, I grant you that there are some cases where you have let's say, daytime talk shows (IE the View), where it is very slanted to the left.  But guess what?  The people who lay around watching TV when they should be at work, really don't hold much influence, anyway.  And, there aren't just 8 channels any more.  It's not like a republican can't change the channel to Fox news.  

 

 

 

In some industries and areas of the country, you will absolutely not get hired if it becomes known you supported Trump or if you don't support the "acceptable views", you know, like diversity in the workplace is the most important thing ever, multiculturalism is the greatest thing ever, bla bla bla.  Now if you've already been hired, expect to be socially ostracized if your support for Trump becomes known. 

And in some areas of the country, the reverse is true in red states.  It is all unacceptable and discriminatory.  BTW, let's not pretend that only the left is guilty.  We are only a generation or two  (indeed, it still happens) from when if you were the wrong color, sexual orientation, hell voted for the wrong person,  that you were not only ostracized, but there was a good chance of you being KILLED in certain red states.  

 

And really, why does anyone need to know your political views at work, anyway? I have worked with a lot of people over the years, and I have to say people that take their politics to work and feel the need to let you know where they stand  when no one asks them, are just off in some way.  I don't need to know how much you love Trump, or how much you hate abortion.  Just do your job and shut the eff up!  No one cares about political opinion in the work place.  It's like talking about religion, or sex, or blue humor in the work place....most, if not all of the time,  it is highly inappropriate.  

 

 

 

In the GOP, there is nothing quite like the Dem militant groupthink on identity politics.

OMG.....SOOOO not true!  Conservative media and entertainment is ALL ABOUT dissecting who is liberal, or who is conservative enough.  A republican can't be seriously considered unless they pass some sort of faith-based litmus test.  People on the right like to deny it, but I seriously think that a lot of this can be blamed on Limbaugh, Hannity, Glen Beck, and Fox News/conservative news types who are widely watched or listened to by people on the right.  Every single one of those examples are people who hammer day in, day out in almost a sermon like  fashion who to support, who to not support, and literally have transformed politics where you have lower and middle class rural and suburban people who vote for the very party that actively works against their best interests.  And before you start quoting ratings, consider this: each person that listens, passes on that opinion to friends and family members, so ratings don't quite reflect that.  If you want to talk about an interesting political phenomenon, as in how to get someone to vote for you when you represent everything that works against their welfare, volumes could be written on that! 


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#53
Ms. Spam

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On Chalups last post quote I agree. It's all name calling and finger pointing on both sides of the aisle. I hate calling it identity politics. But jeez.



#54
Carrie Mathison

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Chalup- I do appreciate the time and effort put into both of your longer posts, and I wish I had a little more time to put into this... but as I'm out/about on the holiday weekend, I have to keep it to a couple of quick takes (well, quick for me):

 

With your first post, I would certainly agree that I'm glad society in general has come to be more tolerant and accepting of minority groups.  I think that's a good thing obviously.  Remember, you're talking to someone who isn't anti-gay or anything- I've been pro gay marriage for as long as I can remember, even going back 20 years, never saw why it was a big deal.  I do remember how things "used to be."  I'm a bit younger than you, but going through high school in the late 90s, things were just way different back then, particularly towards gays.  Some of it was just normal teenagers-being-awful type of thing, but the viciousness towards guys was certainly several degrees higher back then, and not only was it acceptable, it was actually somewhat expected.  And I grew up in NYC, so I can only imagine it being 2x worse somewhere else.

 

So I don't have an issue with how we've become more tolerant, my issue is more with a) process, and b) the new PC witch-hunt culture.  The process annoyed me, because the way in which it happened upended years of how the Court does things, which could cause all sorts of problems later on, and I grew increasingly frustrated with liberals on this, because they wanted their shiny object now... it was all very infantile and lacked foresight.  And I see this lack of foresight and lack of respect for proper process manifest itself in many other issues, such as gun rights, problems in the criminal justice system, and so on, which has led me to believe that liberals generally have no principles.  As far as the witch-hunt culture, I've already wrote pages upon pages on this, but my disdain is more due to the mobs that go around rooting out dissenters (that are, for the most part, pretty f-cking harmless) and trying to ruin their lives, etc., stuff like that.

 

With your second post, I didn't say the GOP isn't influenced by big business types (it always will be), what I said was that the group has a fair amount of diversity of thought in it.  In regards to the evangelicals and Tea Party types, yeah- you're right that there's a bunch of em in Congress, but my point is that their social agenda isn't going anywhere.  No one is pushing for national legislation on these issues.  Also, their agenda isn't going anywhere in the mainstream culture of the US.  Let's go back to gay marriage for instance- the national opinion on that issue moved quite rapidly over a period of 10 years, and it's certainly not going anywhere now.

 

Yes, you are right that conservatives can just flip to Fox News or whatever, but my point is that the SJW attitude has become increasingly prevalent in sources that are either supposed to be non-partisan, like NPR, or were supposedly centrist, like CNN.  I think this is indicative of a growing problem, and by the way, I actually used to listen to NPR quite a bit.. it was once one of the last few places you could find sober analysis that wasn't presented with a lot of annoying political commentary.  Well, that unfortunately has changed, it's got the same screeching, hysterical SJWs that think every little thing is a new Holocaust now, just like MSNBC.

 

I would agree that people don't need to know political views at work, and if it was up to me, work would be completely free from political discussion, or as close as you can get to it.  But liberals can be pretty obnoxious about bringing it in the workplace, and since Trump was elected it has only gotten worse.  Do you remember reading some of those news stories right after the election about how some people were calling in sick and having emotional breakdowns and crying and sh-t because Trump won?  I was like LOL, what a bunch of goddamn children.  You say the reverse is true in red states- not sure I buy that.  I've lived in red states as well (my entire life hasn't been in NY, DC or on the east coast), and the level of sheer intolerance isn't even close to what you'd find in a place like San Francisco.  If you're a liberal that walks into the office in a Southern city, the conservatives around you are not belittling you and constantly giving you grief every day.  Whereas I'm not even joking that you'd cause people to get all 'triggered' and go into fits like toddlers in an office in SF if you walked in with a "Make America Great Again" hat.  And that's if you just wore the hat and said absolutely nothing.

 

In the past, sure, it was different- if you were a black dude in the South, your chances of getting of nice cushy office job were basically 0.  But that isn't the world that exists anymore.  This is another big problem I have with the SJWs, they're constantly fighting old fights that don't exist anymore (probably because of their narcissistic need to feel victimized, but that's another topic for another time).  But it's not the freaking 1960s anymore.  If you walk into any major corporate office in Nashville, or Atlanta, or Raleigh, or Charleston, you probably wouldn't even know you were in the South unless I told you.  It looks/feels pretty much the same as anywhere else in the country.  The new bastions of intolerance simply don't exist there anymore.. they're in places like San Francisco, Seattle and NYC, which pains me to say it, since I'm from there (and NYC isn't even the worst offender of these... you're still allowed to be a registered Republican in that city.  The west coast on the other hand... god, talk about bizarro 1984, Orwellian land).

 

I don't think I agree that conservative media has the same amount of groupthink either.  A lot of what you're seeing as sermons and litmus tests is really just a lot of bluster.  Otherwise someone like Trump would've never gotten elected.  If someone is popular among the conservative masses, the talking heads will follow.  Take Hannity for example, he's like the biggest Trump cheerleader out there right now, and I can think of probably a dozen positions Trump holds that are diametrically opposed to things Hannity advocated for in the past.

 

Like I said, the only real litmus test that exists for Republicans is that they have to be pro-life, and even that isn't set in stone- see Romney and Trump and Bush Sr, and so on for counter-examples.  But I can't think of a single prominent Dem politician that wasn't all-in on the SJW agenda, can you?



#55
Ms. Spam

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I think liberals have principles but they are different from yours, CM.
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#56
The Kurgan

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This is new?  It's been going on since the 1960s.  Mind you, I do not agree with the term SJW here, and what you call SJW, I call political correctness in some instances, in other instances, it's called cultural sensitivity.  Also, the entertainment industry is a lot more diverse and includes points of view other than the dominant culture now than even 20 years ago, so yeah, you are going to get more opinions and points of view, because the industry is less homogeneous.  Now, I grant you that there are some cases where you have let's say, daytime talk shows (IE the View), where it is very slanted to the left.


Terms like SJW and political correctness do not refer to an absence of bigotry or mere politeness, as some might suggest.  It refers to a set of related dogmas and ideologies that have, in blue-state types of regions, become effectively a kind of state religion.  A kind of ideological purity test that you have to pass in order to not be considered a "bigot" or something such.  The term regressive left refers to a similar sort of thing.  The problem a lot of even liberal minded people have with it is that it tends to be very Manichean in its outlook.  They see everything outside their ideological sphere as being literally Hitler, and they have zero tolerance for dissent and are very nasty towards people who disagree on even relatively minor points of dogma.  This is what is meant by these terms.  They are not meant to be applied to all left leaning people, though the right wing will certainly try to do this for their own political benefit.  
 
Of course, there are red state counterparts to this, which brings me to ..
 

Conservative media and entertainment is ALL ABOUT dissecting who is liberal, or who is conservative enough.  A republican can't be seriously considered unless they pass some sort of faith-based litmus test.  People on the right like to deny it, but I seriously think that a lot of this can be blamed on Limbaugh, Hannity, Glen Beck, and Fox News/conservative news types who are widely watched or listened to by people on the right.  Every single one of those examples are people who hammer day in, day out in almost a sermon like  fashion who to support, who to not support, and literally have transformed politics where you have lower and middle class rural and suburban people who vote for the very party that actively works against their best interests.  And before you start quoting ratings, consider this: each person that listens, passes on that opinion to friends and family members, so ratings don't quite reflect that.  If you want to talk about an interesting political phenomenon, as in how to get someone to vote for you when you represent everything that works against their welfare, volumes could be written on that!


This is where I think El Chalupacabra really nails it.  The right wing is not taking it to the extremes that college antifa groups are right now, but that doesn't mean they don't have the same propensity towards dogmatism and us vs. them reductionism.  They're just going through a kind of an ideological realignment, kind of like what happened on the left in the late 80s and into the 90s.  Today, the right is going through its own phase of angst and irony laden counterculture in the wake of the triumph of feminism, multiculturalism, immigration, etc, at least as mainstream values.  That's what the whole neoreaction thing and the alt-right are really all about.  The so called dark enlightenment, all the people talking about being "redpilled."  It's right wing postmodernism.  The left went through the same kind of thing, first in academia during the 1980s and then more generally in the 90s following the defeat of socialism.  So CM is correct in suggesting that there's less dogmatism and fanaticism on the right than on the left presently.
 
But this doesn't mean the propensity towards the kind of cult like thinking we're seeing among the SJWs cannot and does not exist on the right.  Much of the Tea Party and the religious right, obviously, especially at the heights of their influence.  You simply couldn't have a conversation with those kinds of people because they were so caught up in their bizarre conspiracy theories and Obama derangement.  And if you want to talk about the way it used to be, I remember well the late 1980s when the Moral Majority and groups like that were at their height.  It wasn't pretty.  
 
I think this seems to be a cyclical pattern.  Dumb leftists - again on the west coast, were the worse of the two from the mid to late 1960s sometimes right up into the early 80s.  And back then, you had openly Maoist groups, the Weathermen and so on.  It was almost worse then, though it didn't have mainstream media sympathy then unlike now.  The left coast idiots today have inherited that tradition, partly because it never really died.  Plus, a lot of factors have been driving a push towards greater polarization all around.  The rejection of universal, enlightenment liberalism by postmodern identity politics in academia, media siloing - especially in the social media era, the tendency of rival political factions to sort themselves and live in geographic clusters, congressional gerrymandering which incentivizes ideological purity instead of compromise within the parties, and so on.   
 
The SJW types have peaked in recent years.  They are institutionally dominant - in colleges, mainstream media and so on.  But that actually isn't a good sign for them.  Holding institutional power but lacking in actual cultural vigor is a sign of waning influence.  And don't mistake shrill fanaticism for cultural vigor, they're poles apart.   There's a lot of resentment and discontent with them now.  For most of the 2000s, people like me who were critical of the excesses of political correctness were kind of an odd breed.   The winds of popular opinion and cultural progress were in the sails first of the so called new atheists and their criticisms of conservative Christianity, and then of the massive proliferation of social justice and feminist blogs.  That's not the case anymore, and the social justice crowd would be in a world of trouble if they didn't enjoy such high levels of ideological protectionism in academia and mainstream media.  Their purity spiralling and fanaticism is reflective of deep seated fear - the tide has turned against them and they know it.
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#57
Carrie Mathison

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Outstanding post Kurgan.  Articulated a lot of what I've been trying to say.

 

One quibble though- I'm not sure why you think the tide is turning against the SJWs.  I don't really see any evidence of that.  As I've been saying in this thread (and I know I've become a bit of a broken record on this), but there was not a single prominent Dem politician in the last several national elections that didn't give in completely to the SJWs.  Or take issue stances- say immigration.  We've gone from many on the left making economic arguments against illegal immigration, including people like Greenwald and Obama in the 2000s, to the Dems more-or-less advocating for open borders.  The Dems would only agree to deport felons (not just criminals, but felons), and even then, it was only very hesitantly stated, as if they didn't truly believe it.  Safe spaces are only increasing, not decreasing.  Groups like Antifa are not losing popularity, particularly on the West Coast.  The number of academics that are allowed to have conservative views without being fired is probably at a 50 year low.

 

So where is the evidence things are changing?  Or are you arguing that it's simply an inevitable shift that is yet to come, due to cyclical nature of things and since the SJWs are at peak power?



#58
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CM,

I think that if you compare things to, say, four years ago, there's quite a bit of anger and frustration with the SJWs that simply wasn't there before. In fact, you didn't have terms like SJW or regressive left before, say, 2014 or so.  This was because before then, the kinds of views we associate with the SJWs were hegemonic, at least in their respective theaters of operation, particularly racial and sexual politics.  The hysterics we're seeing out of them now are because they're facing something they haven't faced in a long time, and that's real opposition.  

 

Thing of it is, the inertia of ideas has a long term effect.  Apparently rising popularity of SJW types of ideas and activism is in part due to the inertia of their ideas over the decades.  It's not going to collapse overnight.  Kind of like the religious right, it's going to be a long process.  I think you can compare the SJWs of the Obama era to where the religious right was in George W. Bush's time.  Perhaps maximal in terms of actual institutional power, and their supporters were at a level of peak belief and fanaticism.  But the vigor and vitality had shifted to their opponents.  Anyone under 30 in those days was quoting Harris, Dawkins, Hitchens etc. as if they were gospel.  How ironic.  And you're seeing levels of religiosity declining to this day because of it.   But the religious right is far from dead, given that you have a guy like Mike Pence as VP, for example.  But it is in unmistakable decline.  The SJWs are, I think, headed in the same direction

 

So the SJWs peaked in terms of institutional power during the Obama years, and you can see the results of this in the vitriol shown by mainstream media towards Trump, and so on.  But the mere fact that this vitriol is now visible and ostentatious is itself a sign that we've turned a corner.  If the SJWs were truly hegemonic, Hillary Clinton would now be president and these issues wouldn't be a matter of controversy.  Their shrillness and hysteria is a common reaction of movements when it begins to dawn on them that they ain't gonna pull it off.  As to the democratic party capitulating to the SJWs, well, would this be the same democratic party that lost, if only by a narrow margin, last November.  The same Democratic party that lost the House in 2010, gone from a 60 seat supermajority in '08 to a 46 seat minority today, many hundreds of state legislature seats and how many governorships?  Twelve is the figure I've seen.  Since Trump's win, left leaning media has been very divided over the direction the party has gone in as a result of too much "identity politics" and that sort of thing.  

 

Now, does this mean the Democrats are going to suddenly make a dramatic change of course?   Of course not.  Again, these kinds of changes take a long time to really play themselves out.  Movements as given over to fanaticism as the SJWs don't give in nearly that easily, and institutional change could well have to wait until the current crop retires or moves on from their positions of influence.  The DLC has been almost laughably reluctant to look long and hard at their policy platform, their ideology and their broader political culture since Clinton's defeat.  It's all still the Russian's fault, the last time I checked.  Thing is though, Clinton's loss was narrow, and it's quite possible that Trump could really blow it and push support back in the Dem's direction.  Indeed, Trump's win has given them a cause to rally around.  A lot will depend on how things go in 2018 and 2020.

 

The single greatest factor that continues to work in the favor of the SJWs is that while there are many anti-SJW people out there, especially online, they are not at all well organized and are comprised of the types of people that are poorly disposed to working effectively together over a long term to achieve political goals.  Libertarian party, anyone?  This is where the SJWs really excell: their "long march through the institutions" has and will continue to pay dividends for them for a long time to come yet, and the best their right wing critics seem to be able to come up with in response is paranoid screeds about "cultural Marxism."  

 

So it's going to be a while yet before the SJW tide begins to really recede visibly, but I do think they have passed their peak.  


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#59
Carrie Mathison

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Good post Kurgan, and not unreasonable.  There's something to be said for the fact that there's more opposition than I'm giving credit for, and it's not always immediately apparent when you're at the peak until you've actually crossed it and started going down again.

 

I'm thinking back to the height of the Religious Right... maybe, late 90s, early 00s?  This was the last time the GOP could run on something like the marriage amendment and it was a winning issue for them nationally.  Was it obvious at the time that the religious right was about to begin the decline?  Not necessarily.  The boomers had turned sharply to the right in the 80s and Generation X was also a right-leaning generation.  Only the oldest of millenials had come of age by that time and it was unknown what their voting patterns would be like.

 

Time will tell.  One piece of evidence could be whether the Dems run a Kamala Harris type in 2020 and go all-in on the identity politics campaign again.  An even bigger piece of evidence will be whether it works or not.  And yet even more important may be analyzing demographic trends in 2020 and (more importantly) 2024 and beyond, when the generation after millenials starts voting and we start getting some data on how conservative/liberal this generation will be and what trends will continue/end (is there a name of this generation yet?)



#60
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Go on vacation, Chalup does the work for you.

#61
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Good post Kurgan, and not unreasonable.  There's something to be said for the fact that there's more opposition than I'm giving credit for, and it's not always immediately apparent when you're at the peak until you've actually crossed it and started going down again.


There is a lot of opposition, but like I said, it's unorganized, and it doesn't really know how to organize.  That's the countervailing force, so while I think the SJWs have peaked, they will be around a while yet.  Quite a while.  There's a reason the colleges and most major news outlets are pro-SJW.  The SJWs are directly traceable to the west coast new left of the 1960s.  These guys did not peter out in the 1970s, contrary to popular belief.  They retreated into academia and they did not waste their time when they got there, again contrary to popular belief.  They stopped with the Marxist stance on economics, so the FBI finally left them alone.  They were no longer a threat to the real power after that.  So they didn't matter.  Except when they did.
 
Look at these French postmodernist philosophers they studied.  Derrida, Foucault and that whole crew.  They have a reputation for being a bunch of unintelligible gobbledygook.  And it was true to a fair extent.  But literary deconstruction is not a wasted skill.  It's why academic feminists are so damn good in flame wars.   They don't even bother wasting their time answering their opponent's arguments directly.  They dive right into the assumption that their opponents are merely defending a position of power and privilege, because that's all human behavior ever boils down to as far as they're concerned, and it drives their opponents - usually 4chan or manosphere types, batty.  Studying that stuff also leads to an understanding of narrative and cognitive framing.  They understand media, and they understand it on a social, economic and psychological level, not just its basic workings.  A lot of this goes back to the ideas of Herbert Marcuse, Antonio Gramsci, Rudi Dutschke and others had about a long march through the institutions, which ties into their hegemony in academia.  From there, they learned how to look at the way institutions work and how to coordinate their efforts to strategically apply pressure to get what they want.  The ideas of Saul Alinsky and stuff like that.    
 
Again, to their opponents, typically paleoconservatives, neoreactionaries and the right wing of the so called skeptic community - think YouTubers like Sargon of Akkad and the like, everything I've described above is what they call cultural Marxism.  It's all bad, horrible stuff because it's supposedly Marxism and we all know that didn't work from the history of the USSR.  Well that's just patent nonsense.  Cultural Marxism is a contradiction in terms.  Marx was adamant about the primacy of economic relations and how culture ultimately flowed from that.  And Marx was proven right when this huge shift to the left in academia and the mainstreaming of feminism, multiculturalism, mass immigration and so on coincided with the mainstreaming of neoliberal capitalism.  And it makes sense because rapacious capitalism always needs new markets to expand into, and if women and minorities are going to provide that, then that's what's going to happen.   But the neoreactionaries and the paleocons can't see that.  They're totally fixated on Marx the way the dumb lefties can't get over Hitler.  And what's really funny is that they usually don't have a clue what Marx actually believed.  I suggest Marxist ideas to alt-rightists all the time and they tend to actually like it, as long as it's not recognizably Marx to them.
 
So yes, there's a lot of anger and frustration with the SJW movement, but that's not going to ultimately defeat them.  What will beat them, I think, is a superior version of themselves, and we're nowhere near having anything like that yet.  They won't be defeated by anything on the right, because a lot of the population doesn't trust the right wing, and with good reason I think, and also because mainstream conservatism doesn't really mind the cultural left, truth be told.  It's a steam valve for dissent, for one thing.  Better a bunch of angry feminists than a revitalized trade union movement, for example.  That would be a real threat to corporate power.  Occupy Wall Street unnerved them, and I think it's kind of remarkable that the SJWs emerged so suddenly into the social media mainstream not too long after that.  So the left can have the cultural stuff, since it's actually good for capital anyway, and the right keeps what it really wants: a low tax, deregulated economic structure.  Weak unions and so on, as well as a hawkish foreign policy.  A strong capacity to project power in the middle east to protect petrodollar interests.  The deep state is happy with that, they could give a rat's ass about college feminists being oppressed by privileged white males, and are frankly glad, I suspect, that such things are a huge big hairy deal to the left.  The culture wars distract people from what's really happening at the deep state level, and that's where the real action is.  So this is a perfect arrangement for them.
 

I'm thinking back to the height of the Religious Right... maybe, late 90s, early 00s?  This was the last time the GOP could run on something like the marriage amendment and it was a winning issue for them nationally.  Was it obvious at the time that the religious right was about to begin the decline?  Not necessarily.  The boomers had turned sharply to the right in the 80s and Generation X was also a right-leaning generation.  Only the oldest of millennials had come of age by that time and it was unknown what their voting patterns would be like.


I frankly think the religious right peaked in the late 1980s and kind of plateaued through much of the 1990s.  The 90s were harder on the religious right than you might think.  The big GOP win in 1994 was kind of a last hurrah, so to speak. The Clinton/Lewinsky affair, I think, was an early major signal that moral conservatism was in decline.  There was all kinds of wailing and gnashing of teeth in right wing circles back then over the fact that Clinton was not removed from office because of that.  The death of outrage, I remember conservative pundits calling it.  People just didn't care that much.  It was between Bill and Hillary as far as a lot of people were concerned.  And even during the Bush years, this kind of thinking didn't really change all that much.  The GOP was sitting pretty then when it came to electoral success, but the culture was slipping away from them and they damn well knew it.  But for reasons I mentioned above, this was less an issue for the real centers of power than the paranoid rantings of Fox News and AM talk radio would have you believe.  This was when Dawkins, Harris, Hitchens and that whole crew were topping best seller lists.  The religious right were soon to lose over gay marriage, which was the death blow for the religious right, I think, though it wasn't finalized until the Obama years.  Sure, the religious right is still around and managed to get one of their guys as VP, but frankly, I think they're about as undead as their purported savior at this point.

Time will tell.  One piece of evidence could be whether the Dems run a Kamala Harris type in 2020 and go all-in on the identity politics campaign again.  An even bigger piece of evidence will be whether it works or not.  And yet even more important may be analyzing demographic trends in 2020 and (more importantly) 2024 and beyond, when the generation after millenials starts voting and we start getting some data on how conservative/liberal this generation will be and what trends will continue/end (is there a name of this generation yet?)


Well yes, that will be big.  A lot depends on what happens in 2018.  A lot more depends on 2020.  The post-millennials are quite conservative from what I've heard, but it's too early to tell, like you say.  As for the democrats, it doesn't look like they're going to change all that much.  The mainstream voices on the US left - the HuffPost, Salon and so on, are doubling down on the intersectional feminism, and so on.  It's hard to tell if that's what the base really believes, or if the privilege checking tail is wagging a much more populist dog at this point.  As for the intersectional SJWs, that movement is very self destructive.  Women of color are calling out their white sisters for being "white feminists", black cishet males are being called "the white people of black people" and cisgender gay males are being accused of being more misogynistic than even straight white dudes, if you can believe it.  Plus they're lionizing Islam now, with leaders like Linda Sarsour and the like.  Squaring feminism with the circle of Shari'a law is doubtlessly an irrational fool's errand to a rational person, but irrationality has long since passed critical mass, and there's a lot of woke pink hat wearers that are more than prepared to take the whole thing at face value. 
 
But then, the opposition doesn't win elections.  The incumbent party loses them, so what happens in 2018 and 2020 will have a lot more to do with the performance of the Tweeter in Chief's administration than any kind of shift of the ideological poles that might occur between now and then.  I don't find that a comforting thought.
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I'm still digesting the posts since my last one, so it may take a bit for me to get back to this CM, but specifically to yours (#54),  I do get what you mean about process, and how the far left protests, or in some cases, pushes agenda.  I say this as someone trying to look at how you see the situation, I can absolutely see how someone such as yourself in particular would be particularly annoyed.  Your profession, is ALL ABOUT process, procedure, and protocol all of which is literally the very essence of the legal profession.  

 

The far left protests in such a way that really is a hold over from the counter-culture movements of the 1960s and 1970s.  This was the era of Saul Alinsky and community organizing, the time when socialism became embraced in academia and when the various civil rights movements began, and the rise of post structuralism and the mid-20th century French social and critical theorists like Derrida, Foucault, and Barthes*. All of those movements and trains of thought were instrumental with shaking up the status quo, and indeed, that is what they were all designed to do, because they way the "rules" were set, one had to be part of the system to make a change.   Many of those groups (IE women, minorities) didn't have access to even be part of that system to make needed change, so those "newer" trains of thought and action were developed to change the rules, so to speak, so that they could gain access and have a voice .  Now, at the time, I think much of that movement WAS necessary, and a lot of good DID come out of that.  

 

Now, however, I think what you are arguing, and what I agree with, is that the pendulum has swung too far, and some of those tactics for social debate and change are antiquated, and actually do more harm than good to the cause of the left.  Or the right for that matter, because they have adopted many of the same strategies (IE Tea Party), even if the philosophies and beliefs are different.

 

Indeed, that is what I am arguing, CM.  We see that the left, at least the far left, engages in social debate.   I agree it is not appropriate in this day and age.  Now, I don't pretend to know the answer, and actually, there may not be one, but I don't think the answer is for the right to respond with the same tactics, unless the goal really is stalemate.  In which case, that would be an effective tactic, but not a very productive one.  And in a way, that is also admitting defeat, when you think about it.

 

I will try to pick up from here later, but may take a few days. 

 

* Basically all the stuff I spent the last few years choking down in grad school, LOL!  My focus on museum studies required this for new museology, as there aren't many things more unchanging  or stuck in time and entrenched in process than museums.  And what does that has to do with systems support/tech support, my current job? Nothing!


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#63
Ms. Spam

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HA! I wonder about higher education (Chalups last sentence in the post right above mine). I'm working on a masters of math ed and so far I've done nothing interesting or applicable to actually integrating math in my curriculum because academia and real world classrooms are 1000 miles apart sometimes. 


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