It’s not the plot of a new gay teen drama on Nickelodeon, it’s merely Caleb Q. Washington explaining the intergenerational conflict within the Right:
Liberal Fascism attacked left-wing identity in its very title and cover. It was an attack that demanded rebuttal by the left. In effect, it benefited from the forces which people like Milo Yiannopoulos and, dare I say it, Donald Trump, have explicitly made use of for their advantage.
If The Tyranny of Cliches had been re-titled, and I’m just spit-balling here, “The Left’s Biggest Lies” with a cartoon of Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama dressed as Pinocchio, it might have been more of a success.
Milo Yiannopoulos, on the other hand, has risen to prominence (eclipsing Goldberg’s Twitter follower count this spring) by harnessing these very same forces to his benefit. Milo first came to my attention when he dropped the first supportive piece on GamerGate from any well-known news outlet.
The political genius of this was entirely lost on the rest of the right. Becoming the champion of gamers against the worst elements of the left, he forced people on the left to defend their most despicable elements, stay silent, or join him. It forced the left to fight on its own turf.
He’s done the same thing with the zaniness on college campuses. With his speaking tour, Milo has repeatedly stirred controversy. This has led to forcing people on the left to distance itself from the worst of the craziness in a way no other conservative has done.
Milo has reaped huge dividends from this strategy, both as a proponent for the right, and personally.
So, why is there conflict?
The simple answer is that Jonah and Milo are avatars for each side of the generational schism on the right. While not an old man himself, Jonah is their representative. The old men on the right seek to hold the line in a conflict of attrition with the left over disputed ground. The young men seek to fight on what the left thought was safe turf.
This brings us to the specific conflict today.
There are two groups of people on the right Jonah, and the rest of the old men revile. The first are agitators who knowingly say extreme things aimed to upset the old men. They are getting trolled, and are looking bad as a result. The whole point of the activity is to make the old men angry, and in their anger for them to act in a way that turns people off from them. It’s a classical rhetorical move explained by Aristotle. They seek to inspire anger in their targets and succeed. The other group are simply people who take a more extreme right-wing view than is considered socially acceptable.
The old men and Jonah Goldberg hate these people more than they hate the left, as they seek a monopoly of right wing though, and Milo Yiannopoulos has no interest in condemning them. He even delivers apologia for them.
This also explains why I am on Milo’s side, despite being of an age with Jonah. Now, I actually like Jonah. I understand him, and I think his Liberal Fascism was a very good and important book. I even paid homage to it with the cover of SJWs Always Lie.
But being an editor at National Review, Jonah has always been allied with the Old Men of National Review, while I have always been Too Extreme for them despite being identified as the most talented right-wing columnist of my generation by Universal Press Syndicate and being signed as a prospective replacement for William F. Buckley by them.
And wow, did that ever fail!
I am middle-aged, but being a game designer, my heart is with the brash young gamers of #GamerGate, not the aging cuckservatives of National Review. I don’t pretend to be with it – I have no idea what the equivalent of early techno in the 1990s might be these days – and considering how long it took me to recover from an intra-club scrimmage with the prima squadra and having to defend 19-year-old wingers, I am VERY aware of my age these days.
But Jonah, Rod Lowry, Rod Dreher, and other 40-somethings need to realize that we are no longer the Young Turks of the Right, and it is time to either get with the #AltRight and support the up-and-coming new guys or wander off into the pastures of political irrelevance.