It’s not like we didn’t know this was coming. Megyn Kelly is already talking about leaving Fox News. In recent interviews, Kelly is triangulating against her employer, snarking about the “brain damage that comes from the job” of working at Fox. She’s openly speculating about bailing on the company when her contract runs out because she doesn’t feel the company has backed her sufficiently against the evil sexist Donald J. Trump.
Trump’s attacks on her are the best thing that could have happened to Kelly. Before, she was America’s Sweetheart, a center-right pundit with flowing blonde locks ready to calmly tell you how it is. Not a bad position to be in, but no one important would take her seriously. Now, Megyn Kelly scowls at us from the camera with her angry woman haircut, covering the really critical issues like the “assault” on Michelle Fields. She tours the country paying tribute to her own courage as the pudgy white knights of the conservative movement serve as her amen chorus. As bucket food salesman Glenn Beck gloats, Megyn can do “whatever she wants” now. Hillary Clinton adds her own praise. And when Kelly does bail, she’ll write a bestselling book detailing how horrible it was to work for right-wing propaganda network which didn’t have her back. She’s not just respectable, but a hero.
It’s hard not to compare the situation to Michelle Fields. Fields claimed she “never wanted to be the story.” But her supposed “assault” at the hands of Trump’s campaign manager was utterly trivial, the kind of thing a man wouldn’t even notice. Yet this story becomes the obsession of several major journalists, including Kelly. When her fanatically anti-Trump boyfriend (((Jamie Weinstein))) decided to make this a story, you could actually see the Beltway Right conspiring and scheming in real time on Twitter to make this a big deal. Fields didn’t bother contacting her employer before going with the story and contemptuously treated her own company as an enemy throughout the process.
Breitbart has been targeted for elimination by the Beltway Right after this election cycle. The company is vulnerable because one of the major donors is Robert Mercer, a major Ted Cruz backer who funnels millions of dollars into the company to purchase favorable coverage for his preferred candidate. At the same time, Breitbart has not been characterized by the kind of fanatically anti-Trump coverage you see coming out of everything else. I expect Mercer will be heavily pressured to lend his support to another outlet which aligns more closely with the #NeverTrump consensus within the Beltway.
The Narrative emerged that Breitbart didn’t have Fields’ back. But the truth is Fields was never invested in Breitbart any more than was Ben Shapiro. Shapiro always wanted to build up his own website. Fields was interested in building her own brand. And Kelly wants to do the same.
Few people involved in what is absurdly called the “conservative media” want to shift the Overton Window to the Right or view themselves as activists. Instead, their goal is to carve out a niche, secure the loyalty of a certain market, and then push products to that market. If you are Jim Bakker (back and bigger than ever) or Glenn Beck, it’s buckets of food or packets of “survival seeds” so you can survive the End Times. If you’re some girl on Fox News, you want some subtly suggestive picture of yourself on the cover; what you are actually writing about is beyond the point. If you are Bill O’Reilly, you’re pushing a particular fantasy about “greatness” to aging white men who know the country’s best years are behind it. If you are Mark Levin, you’re offering Talmudic and convoluted knowledge about the Constitution, with Levin acting as a kind of rabbi bestowing ancient secrets on the uneducated goyim.
The point is to secure ownership of The Microphone to guarantee access to that market. The business model only works if the Narrative is predictable, the talking points are the same, and the supposed solutions are things people are used to. The recent report Erick Erickson, Mark Levin, and Glenn Beck are being paid to attack Trump isn’t some amazing revelation. It’s just business as usual.
For that reason, we may have to rethink some of our assumptions about the way the conservative movement or even the Republican Party operates. It’s tempting to say the point of the movement or the party is just to carry out the wishes of its donors. Yes, these donors want cheap labor via mass immigration, support for Israel, and a pro-corporate stance in regulatory policy. But consider the donors who blew untold millions on the campaigns of people like Jeb Bush or Marco Rubio. Are they Masters of the Universe – or simply suckers?
If 2016 has shown us anything, it’s the absurdity of pretending there’s a difference between the “Republican Establishment” and some virtuous TruConservative Movement. Ted Cruz’s campaign represents the unification of these supposedly disparate forces if indeed there ever was a difference. And the key to understanding both the GOP and the Beltway Right is recognizing both are fundamentally self-interested. Talking to either about “principles” is like talking to a cafeteria Catholic about the intricacies of ecclesial law or some centuries-old papal bull. It’s completely irrelevant to their own worldview. When a TruConservative starts talking to you about “principles,” you’re simply hearing a sales pitch.
If we had to describe the Beltway Right in two words, it would be “organized mediocrity.” It’s not just that conservatives refuse to address the challenges of this century, it’s that they are intellectually incapable of understanding them. But that doesn’t matter if you have managed to secure ownership to that captive “conservative” market.
Every movement, it is said, devolves into a business and then into a racket. The reason movement conservatives hate Donald Trump has nothing to do with “tone” or even “policies,” but because he threatens the smooth operation of that racket. As Joseph Sobran said of conservatives, “It was all a game, a way of making a living.”
The Beltway Right has two fundamental characteristics. First, like all mainstream conservatives, they believe they are in charge, that the country faces no fundamental threats or even the possibility of real changes. Secondly, and more importantly, it shares a common interest with the Cultural Marxist Left in preventing any raising of white racial consciousness which could threaten its business model of shadowboxing with the Democrats on TV. Thus, SE Cupp can giggle about being friends with Van Jones, a former member of the “socialist collective” STORM. But she frantically counter-signals against Trump and cries about how great gay marriage is. We can only imagine what she would say about us.
Indeed, like Megyn Kelly, many of the figures involved in the nominal American Right are simply looking for the opportunity to triangulate against their own institutions and transition into the “mainstream.” On a far smaller scale, former “William F. Buckley fellow” Betsy Woodruff did something similar and now works for The Daily Beast, endlessly tone policing the American Right. One could argue she’s simply following Buckley’s legacy.
This is a key difference between conservatives and progressives. While progressives work to pull their institutions (and by extension, the culture) to the Left, conservatives constantly try to triangulate between their “friends” on the Left and the hated white constituency who actually reads or views them on TV. If the opportunity arises, they’ll jump ship altogether. Conservative journalists and even activists have no real stake in the success of their own movement. Indeed, the “worse” things get, the more money than can make. Who can doubt the Beltway Right is salivating at the financial prospects offered by another Clinton Administration?
The result is the old pattern of the American Right losing in slow motion, with the timeless “conservative values” simply being today’s progressivism after a few years delay. Insofar as there is a “populist” tone to American conservatism, it combines paranoia with political correctness, leading to idiotic campaigns about secret “Islamist” plots to impose Sharia rather than rational discussions about the implications of racial reality and demographic change.
Trump has given an opening for some conservatives within the Beltway Right to start challenging this pattern of gradual retreat and moral surrender. It’s no exaggeration to say the Alt Right has gained a foothold, quietly, within the conservative movement itself because of The Donald. But make no mistake – the “blacklist” promised by minicons like Amanda Carpenter will become a reality if Trump falters. The battle for American Right isn’t just about delegates in Colorado or Indiana, but about the staffing decisions within companies like Breitbart or the Daily Caller, the struggles over key donors, and the coups and counter-coups within long-established conservative institutions.
What is needed is for the Alternative Right to become an independent political force and to break the hold Conservatism Inc. has on white Americans. But pushing through the cordon sanitaire will require something more than more websites, Twitter campaigns, and small donations. That serious financial and logistical backing has not yet emerged. And unless it does soon, the Alt Right boomlet may fade if Trump does.
Every revolution begins by attacking the collaborators. And Conservatism Inc. is composed of collaborators, too cowardly, mediocre, or simply malevolent to stand up for the interests of their people. They operate as parasites on European-America. Our job as revolutionaries is to constantly bring out the contradictions within their own artificial ideology, to constantly show how they are betraying the very people they claim to speak for. American whites have no more dangerous enemy than those who claim they are defending a Republic which vanished long before any of us was born.
We are left in the uncomfortable situation of embracing Jeb Bush’s characterization of Donald Trump as a #ChaosCandidate, rather than as the God-Emperor. Instability is the best ally we have. Tactically, we must do all we can to disrupt the conservative movement, to destroy its ability to serve as a safety valve to diffuse white discontent, to racialize the policy issues of the day, to ensure conservativism can never return to the “safe” territory of tax cuts for billionaires and enterprise zones. Because as long as Conservatism Inc. can provide a profitable living for its minions in Arlington or Georgetown, we’ll never be able to connect to the mass base we need.