The alt-lite isn’t a gateway to the Alt Right. It takes those who notice the West’s profound problems and directs them back into liberalism.
by L. Rye
In politics, there are those who are noticed because of their natural ability, and those who must constantly strive to be noticed. The strong, with natural ability, tend to be motivated by the desire for truth. The weak are compelled by a desire for fame. It is in their desire for fame that these weaker political commentators will cheat by trying to appear more clever and more reasoned than their betters. It is in this desire for fame that they lead their listeners, readers, and viewers into a position which is meaningless.
To a great degree, a radical’s success within the realm of political commentary is determined by his ability to either demonstrate original thought or to translate higher thought into a more palatable language. Either this person is naturally gifted in discourse, or otherwise has insight into previously unexplored areas. This type of thinker is separated from the mass of political commentary by a compulsion that drives him toward the radical. He creates and tends his own fire and thereby draws others out of the darkness.
Those who are motivated by their desire for fame rely on their ability to craft narratives that appear to challenge a prevailing notion or norm but are ultimately meaningless. This is the foundation upon which the alt-lite stands. It is natural to gravitate toward what is easy. Holding meaningless profundities to be true because they make you feel better is easy. This is what Dan Dennett termed a “deepity.” A deepity appears to be deeply profound, however, it is ultimately intellectually hollow.
“Democrats are the real racists.” is perhaps the most well-known “deepity” on the American right. There is a more dangerous narrative, however. The argument that “anti-fascists are the real fascists” will prove to be the most damaging meme spun out of the alt-lite. We are supposed to believe that the entire philosophy of fascism is the denial of free speech. This narrative serves as a trap and impedes the Alt Right’s growth. Rather than “really making you think,” the deepity acts as a thought stopper. There is no reason for one to think further when they can be comfortable believing that left-wingers are fascists.
From this narrative springs another. In confusing the terminology associated with political positions on the right and left, the alt-lite is able to defame the cause of the Alt Right. SJW’s are the real fascists, and moreover Alt Righters are said to be SJW’s simply because they “play identity politics.” You don’t want to be an SJW do you?
The alt-lite is incapable of making a distinction between the two, because they hold no actual positions of their own. The term SJW is derogatory because it is meant to point out inauthenticity. That is, the SJW’s action is fundamentally virtue-signaling. The alt-lite is trying to paint anyone who stands for anything as being inauthentic. They are a wet blanket thrown over a fire that has just been kindled.
Let’s say that someone has caught a glimpse of the clown world. Maybe a recent terrorist attack, a justified shooting by police, or mass migration has caught the attention of a young person. For a brief moment, the illusion of “one race, the human race” falls. This person is ripe for initiation into our movement if only he could be exposed to the right arguments. Instead, he is treated to the idea that Muslims are violent simply because of their “intolerant religion.” When a Black teen is shot justifiably, he is told Democrat policies have ruined Black areas, causing them to turn to crime. Mass migration is not an identity or racial problem but a problem of assimilation. Whatever happens in clown world, the alt-lite is ready with the easy answer.
Rather than being a reactionary movement, the alt-lite is at best a soft-left movement; at worst it’s a libertine movement. How can a movement that uses homosexual Jews and transexuals to promote itself be considered right wing? The alt-lite uses an old recruiting trick that we have previously seen used in campus Libertarianism—a political movement can enrich its coffers and expand its rolls simply by appealing to the lowest common denominator. A perfect example of this trap is the “dude weed” guy. The alt-lite has the “based” guy. It appeals to those who fancy themselves clever for supposedly being outside of the right-left paradigm. The alt-lite is a bug-light that zaps the minds of potential recruits.
It is easy to sit back and believe that the alt-lite is our “gateway drug.” This would be a grave mistake. Far from being a useful stepping stone, the alt-lite is a wall of misinformation—simply a dumbed down Libertarianism. It is the new centrist position. They are neither hot nor cold; they are lukewarm and uncommitted. Eventually (after Trump exits), the followers of the alt-lite will be reabsorbed into the ruling Western liberal mass.
In all places we must be prepared to combat these narratives. It is not enough to be a bystander and think the right thoughts. It is not enough to remain online. Around coworkers, classmates, and family, proclaim the truth when they are discussing recent events. You never know who is listening or who feels that they are alone. A generation of fanatics must be cultivated. The left are not the real fascists. We are the real fascists. The alt-lite is our enemy.