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One weird trick to make sympathisers turn against you
Be as stupid and nasty as the thing you complain about, thereby proving that you really are all the things they say you are
This has been a while brewing. A rant about the political right.
There are several reasons why I've focused mainly on airing scepticism about modern left/liberal tendencies since this newsletter started.
One is that left liberalism was my lifelong tradition - one that I never questioned until seeing everyone's brains melt in 2016 (and being one of those melting brain people too, for a time).
It's easy to criticise the other side, but ultimately boring. We all know that actual nazism or white supremacist culture is a fringe stupidity, mostly blown out of proportion due to base human incentives. The left needs ogres to oppose and the security apparatus needs compelling budget cases.
The 21st century iteration of the left is stupid. It's a sitting duck. For reasons we've all grown used to, relating to censoriousness, cruelty, hypocrisy, incoherence, lying and so on.
But, every now and then I'm catapulted back to those comforting moments of thinking that the political right is just too thick, bigoted, ignorant and mad to take seriously. Except as a threat of some kind.
It's a shame that the idiots always float to the surface, like shit, but it will ever be thus.
It is the way of all ideologies.
So, although the lions share of intelligent and thoughtful commentary that I've been weighing and often absorbing over the past couple of years originates on the right, I'm reminded that I don't belong there any more than I belong among the milquetoast centre or the galaxy-brain postmodern identity-obsessed leftish.
It was a mentally unstable woman shaking a tambourine and screaming at a man 'repent, motherfucker' for liking a mainstream comedian that flicked a switch for me marked 'Fuck the leftish'.
But, for every action there really is an equal and opposite reaction and this time it's the unhinged response on the right to a 'transwoman' being given some beers.
Some readers will know the story of Dylan Mulvaney and the Bud Light beers. For those who don't, a recap:
Mulvaney is a presumably gay man who now identifies as a 'girl' and talks about it all the time on TikTok. He/she (I can't be bothered getting into pronoun protocol) was sent some beers because they're an 'influencer' and Budweiser marketing people thought that seeing Mulvaney drinking their beers would encourage the sort of people who like Mulvaney to drink them too.
I was vaguely aware of Mulvaney already, after a weird clip from a talk show conversation he/she had with Drew Barrymore, where they end up sitting on the floor like a pair of small children ("the floor always feels safer", says Barrymore, inexplicably, at one point, while a studio audience looks on with beatifically glazed expressions. Honestly, you have to see it).
So Budweiser sends Mulvaney some beers and the right loses its mind.
An influential conservative called Matt Walsh fills - then empties - his nappy, the contents of which are a diatribe about how ugly Mulvaney is and the video is demonetised by YouTube. Reasonably, if you ask me, because it's shit. Walsh, who has previously made a film sensibly highlighting the incoherence of gender ideology and the madness of academics who can't say what a woman is, goes full tonto.
Even I feel like putting some slap on and punching him in the mouth. And my disdain for gender ideology is rarely matched by anyone else I know, in the real world.
What a wanker, is all I can think. What an absolute car crash of a human being.
And a naff (why are conservative musical icons always so naff? I mean, Ted fucking Nugent, for gods sake) purveyor of limp pastiche rock/rap called Kid Rock (I'm not making this up, European readers) buys a case of Buds and proceeds to shoot it up with an automatic weapon.
And I can't help suspecting that 'Kid' might really just be taking out some guilt over his suppressed desire for Mulvaney on those cans.
What a sad old sap he seems.
Amazingly (to me) the only person in this saga that I can imagine enjoying a beer with (though it would have to be one of my favourite French or Belgian tipples - not that industrial crap, which probably actually does deserve shooting up on quality grounds alone) is Mulvaney. Himself or herself. I don't care. It's just a human being undergoing a spectacular barrage of hatred for not being the way some other people think they should be.
Fuck you, angry conservatives. But also, thank you for reminding me that I'm not quite post-liberal yet.
Mulvaney is just a person surfing the zeitgeist. An archetypal theatre gay pursuing a personal identity adventure. An 'influencer' in an empty world of consumer choice, with gender as the latest off-the-shelf promotion. But also someone with the balls (this is not intended as a pun) to have the facial reconstruction surgery to look more womanlike than before. I have a kind of respect for this person that I cannot muster for an old bloke discharging an assault rifle because he's upset about who's advertising something.
Yes, I know that transgender ideology is the leftish's version of post-truth. I share the concerns about atomising dimorphic sex into scores of vacuous identities. No, of course I don't think of Mulvaney as a woman. Yes, Mulvaney represents a cartoonish idea of femininity.
Oh, I've seen those sinister 'transwomen' warning actual women about the penalties for not accepting them. I'm aware of the sickness and rampant misogyny in that world of 'lady dicks' and so forth.
You're going to have to have more than very strong feelings about Mulvaney, though, to convince me that he/she is harming women. Your feelings about this are going to have to translate to more than 'this is insulting to women' because, honestly, you can't criticise the leftish for relying on semantic theories of power while coopting the same when it suits you.
Also, congratulations on getting someone fired from their job.
No, seriously. It takes chutzpah to moan all the time about cancel culture and then celebrate because you took down a Woke executive.
What pisses me off most about the right's reaction to Mulvaney is this.
You conservatives have a case when you point out a lot of the concerns you have about modern western liberal culture. And some of us who don't come from your tradition can see that. We try to carry that case into the light, outside of your echo chambers. We try to have conversations with the incurious, who merely accept how things are now by pointing out that there's more to it than they may have considered.
There is obviously more to the transgender ideology issue than it’s not my business or live and let live. And when we try to talk about it we too get called bigots and transphobes or seen as fusty and reactionary.
You just made those conversations harder to have.
By getting your tiny little dicks in such a twist and behaving so ineffably stupidly you have indelibly projected 'hates trans people' onto the forehead of anyone who refuses to monotonously intone transwomen are women and prefers to explain how it's really not a good idea to have self-declaration, with no independent oversight. Especially in places like women's prisons.
Listen, you lot. You obviously love to lose. I get that. I was once part of a similar tradition. Pro-socialism and anti-capitalism, maaan. It's a great place to be. You can be right about everything, without the responsibility of ever making the thing you want really happen. Feel free to keep losing. You already lost the culture war and it's time you got over it instead of wringing your hands all the time about how bad everything is.
But, know this.
You're going to be on your own if you keep behaving that way.
Any 'allies' you had will desert you because you make us look bad.
The Woke are wrong about many things. But they turn out to be right about you.
Well done, guys. Just as real progress was being made on the complex issues around gender identity rights (at least here in Europe) you just handed a useful stick to the Woke and you deserve to be beaten with it.
The trouble is, so will I.
That's it. That's the rant. I enjoyed it. I needed it.
Or, better still…
Normal service resumes shortly. With more on the coming unreality (courtesy of AI warfare, which I just learned about and kind of wish I hadn’t).