November 21, 2016


Nazi imagery on full display at alt-right event in Washington (ALEXANDER FULBRIGHT November 21, 2016, Times of Israel)

At an event of the alt-right National Policy Institute on Saturday night, attendees reportedly spouted Nazi propaganda and slogans, yelling "Heil the people! Heil the victory," and extended their arms in Nazi salutes, showcasing the extremist views of the white nationalist group that has been emboldened by Donald Trump's presidential run.

Speakers quoted Nazi propaganda in the original German and described Trump's election victory as "the victory of will," using the name of a famous Nazi propaganda film that championed Hitler and the Nazis' rise to power in 1930s Germany, The New York Times reported.

People at the event also referred to the media as the "Lugenpresse," a term used by Nazis that translates as "lying press." National Policy Institute head Richard Spencer, who has been described as a forerunner of the alt-right movement, implied that the press's opposition to Trump derives from a desire to defend Jewish interests. [...]

In a Wall Street Journal interview on Saturday, Bannon said that "our definition of the alt-right is younger people who are anti-globalists, very nationalist, terribly anti-establishment."

Economic Nationalist is the new Swiss.

How Stephen Bannon Promoted Racists and Anti-Semites to the Front of American Politics (Cathy Young, November 21, 2016, Heat Street)

The alt-right, or "alternative right," is a loosely knit movement that was born around 2010 and gained mainstream visibility last year -- thanks in no small part to Breitbart's efforts. It includes many different shades of right-of-center ideology that reject mainstream conservatism. But a look at alt-right websites, statements explaining its philosophical underpinnings, and its leading figures shows that the alt-right is predominantly a racist movement in the classic sense of the word: It rejects human universalism and believes that people and cultures are defined first and foremost by race and ethnicity. There are, no doubt, those who consider themselves alt-right and do not share this view. But at its core, the alt-right is folks who think that the spirit of America is found not in the Declaration of Independence with its proclamation that "all men are created equal," but in a 1790 law that limited United States citizenship to "free white person[s]."

To be sure, that's not an outlook you will find overtly expressed on Breitbart. But while Breitbart is not quite an alt-right website, there is no question that it began to court that fringe movement in the summer of 2015, shortly after the launch of Trump's presidential campaign -- mostly via the site's most visible contributor, flamboyant anti-political correctness crusader Milo Yiannopoulos. (Disclosure: I was on amicable terms with Yiannopoulos until last spring and was a guest on his Breitbart Tech webcast twice.) [...]

Several months later, Breitbart ran a lengthy essay by Yiannopoulos and his frequent co-author Allum Bokhari titled "An Establishment Conservative's Guide to the Alt Right." While Breitbart editor-in-chief Joel Pollak has defended the piece as "journalism" in a National Public Radio interview, it smacked more of unabashed boosterism. Yiannopoulos and Bokhari had nothing but praise for the alt-right's "dangerously bright" and "eclectic" thinkers, such as blogger Steve Sailer, whom they credited as a pioneer of "human biodiversity" (the belief that inherent racial and ethnic differences in intelligence, criminality, and moral judgment not only exist but should inform public policy). While they mentioned that alt-right websites such as VDARE, The Unz Review, and Alternative Right (now Radix Journal) had been "accused of racism," the clear implication seemed to be that such accusations were a politically correct reaction to heretical opinions. The authors also took a sympathetic view of the movement's rank-and-file followers who felt betrayed by mainstream conservatism and looked to the alt-right for a "new identity politics" championing the "tribal concerns" of white people.

Yiannopoulos and Bokhari acknowledged that a large contingent of alt-right posters on social media were trafficking in blatantly racist and anti-Semitic material, often using it to harass Jewish critics of Trump. But they not only hand-waved this conduct as mere rebellious antics by young people fed up with PC nannyism but lavished compliments on the alt-right "meme brigades" known for anti-Jewish caricatures and gas chamber jokes: "fresh, daring and funny," an "outburst of creativity and taboo-shattering." Real neo-Nazis, the article assured readers, were a tiny percentage of the alt-right, openly derided and scorned by the rest of the movement.

In fact, as I wrote at the time, a look at alt-right Twitter profiles shows that most of its active posters seem to be quite serious about their white supremacist and anti-Semitic beliefs. And it's not just a handful of marginal users: One of the leading alt-right accounts, "Ricky Vaughn," who made MIT's list of 200 top "election influencers" before being banned from Twitter in early October, tweeted regularly about "feral blacks" and the evil of Jews.

What's more, the websites mentioned by Yiannopoulos and Bokhari as the alt-right's intellectual hubs are full of blatantly bigoted content. Regular VDARE contributors include retired California State University-Long Beach psychology professor Kevin MacDonald, who believes that Judaism is an "evolutionary strategy" by which Jews seek dominance and that Jews living in majority-gentile societies pursue their collective interests by working to subvert and weaken their host cultures. Sailer, too, has suggested that Jews "use their influence over the media ... to depress, demoralize, and divide other groups' children." Richard Spencer, the founder and editor-in-chief of Alternative Right and later Radix Journal, advocates all-white "homelands" -- off-limits to Jews, whom Spencer does not regard as truly white.

Defending Bannon on NPR, Pollak asserted that the Yiannopoulos/Bokhari "Guide" was Breitbart's "only alt-right content." Yet a search of the website turns up numerous other items promoting and glamorizing the alt-right and even using its own jargon to mock its conservative critics as "cucked." In May, Breitbart also published a piece by an actual alt-right social media figure, "Pizza Party Ben," attacking Shapiro for his failure to board the Trump Train and mocking him for talking about his anti-Semitic harassment (of which a later study found he was the top target). "No one hates Jewish people," scoffed "Ben," who must not have been paying attention to his comrades-in-virtual-arms.

No one knows to what extent Bannon personally greenlit or supervised Breitbart's alt-right lovefest. But it is a fact that last July, he told Mother Jones' Sarah Posner, "We're the platform for the alt-right." He also insisted that the alt-right was not racist or anti-Semitic, conceding only that there were some racists and anti-Semites involved in the movement. Meanwhile, Spencer has told The Daily Beast that "Breitbart has acted as a 'gateway' to Alt Right ideas and writers."

Posted by at November 21, 2016 2:20 PM