Sunday, June 25, 2023

The Right's Circular Firing Squad

Sohrab Ahmari, Ross Douthat, and David French

Can't we all just get along? Of course we can't; that would be too easy!

The squabbles between the "new right" and the libertarian-oriented free-marketeers continue, and they show no signs of abating. In fact, the fissures look to be expanding, as NatCons ramp up their attacks on "zombie-Reaganism" and more establishment-types accuse populists of being undisciplined and overly pugnacious. 

David French, a prominent anti-Trump conservative and former editor of The Dispatch, has a Twitter feed inundated with the kind of leftist rhetoric you'd expect from Buzzfeed or Jacobin. Jonah Goldberg has also been a leading anti-populist voice on the right, often criticizing the still burgeoning MAGA cadre. 

But make no mistake, French and Goldberg are highly intelligent. In fact, I would recommend listening to The Remnant (Goldberg's podcast) or going through French's old substack, French Press (archived on The Dispatch website.) What you'll find is, mostly, thoughtful commentary. Unfortunately, much, though not all of it, has been tainted by anti-Trump fanaticism. 

Goldberg going after Gorka:

The pugnacious populists, however, don't get off scot-free. Oftentimes, their social media presence is unnecessarily combative and, sometimes, tasteless. Though there's nothing wrong with critiquing the old GOP playbook (in fact, I encourage it!), there's a thoughtful way to do it. 

Josh Hammer, who I am a big fan of, lays it on a tad thick here:  

If our goal is to take on the radical left, this is no way to do it. We may disagree on economic policy, foreign interventionism, and decorum - but we can all agree that far-left decadence is facilitating the erosion of the West's moral and cultural fabric. Either we hold our noses and join forces, or we succumb to a very dangerous movement.  


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