Saturday, May 21, 2016

Glen Beck and the Buckley-Cucks

I just saw a Netflix documentary called Best Enemies, and it was about the feud between Bill Buckley and Gore Vidal which had simmered through out the late fifties and early sixties. Culminating in their 1968 debate on ABC for the presidential primaries.

Which by the way Buckley handily lost.

The reason he lost quickly became obvious while I was watching it. Buckley always accepted the liberal paradigm and then tried to deconstruct it. It was a fundamentally lazy way of doing business that relied on his own talent and nothing else.   The problem is that Buckley was the only game in town for conservatives.  He set the tone and pace.  And he always let the left begin by presenting their paradigm, which he accepted.

Once you accept their paradigm you have let them dictate where the battlefield will be. And that means you are better than halfway to losing the battle.

That applied to just about everything else he did. When you let the left decide what the paradigm is going to be then you have fundamentally accepted their view point.  It means that they get to decide where the battle line is to drawn and who is to be invited to the battle.  Buckley was the prototype of the amenable authority figure for the left. He would reliably "turn right and fire," when the left said, this group or that group "is beyond the pale." The Birchers, the Randites (etc).

If you wanted someone read out of the conservative movement you went to Bill Buckley.

In exchange, the MSM anointed him The Voice of the Legitimate Right. But the fact is they only allowed him this privilege because they knew they had to have a Voice of the Legitimate Right.

Because if they didn't select one for us we would have picked one for ourselves.

The MSM was in it's glory back back then.  All the newspapers were owned by Gannet. There were only three sources of national TV news and all of them were liberal because...duh...they were on TV. Television was Hollywood light and for a number of reasons dating back to the 1930s the left has a huge center of gravity in Hollywood and that naturally carried over to television since it was the same talent pool.  Unsurprisingly, the left was not going to let right wing newsmen get ahead in their business.

They did have one problem, if they choked out the right wing view point completely the government would saddle them with "fairness regulations." Actually those were in place already and had been used by the Kennedy's to strangle conservative media in smaller markets like radio. So they selected their opponent with some care and came up with the odd, off putting and slightly comical William F. Buckley.

Now Zuckerberg is the king of broadband media and he has adopted and is following that playbook.  He selected with considerable care the people that he has chosen to be the new Voice(s) of the Legitimate Right.

 It was embarrassing to watch the fawning they all did over being at Facebook HQ. Clearly they were grateful for Zuckerberg's table scraps.

The meeting has clearly succeeded in making some of the terminally uncool delegation seem important and relevant again — a feeling some of them probably haven’t enjoyed for years. Perhaps that’s why there are so many selfies spilling out.

And who’s going to the meeting, anyway? Naturally, Breitbart turned down the offer, but who accepted?

First there’s the Cheetos-encrusted Glenn Beck, the crazy grand-daddy of the cuckservative tendency and the only adult white male to wear problem glasses. In true man-of-the-people style, Beck arrived on the West Coast in a private jet, just weeks after laying off 40 of his own employees. You have to admire the chutzpah.

Whether it’s threatening suicide or posting videos with chips stuck to his face, it’s long been apparent that Cheetos-encrusted Glenn has lost the plot. Considering the rate he’s been laying off staff from his various ventures, he might be angling to have his own firm’s articles be the “one true conservative source” that Zuckerberg allows to trend.

If that doesn’t work out, he’ll just have to try another venture. Crazy Glenn Doritos, perhaps? One thing’s for sure: they’d be salty and bitter as Hell.

Glenn Beck said he wanted to “look Mark Zuckerberg in the eye and get a gauge of him as a man.” Spoiler alert Glenn: if you’re going to their house and not the other way around,they’re the bigger man. He didn’t go to visit you, you went to his temple and shook the hand of the money changers.

Me, I prefer to flip the tables.

Paying tribute to the boy-king, Glenn Beck is begging Zuckerberg for permission to be popular. Meanwhile, Breitbart is still #15 on the network even with a handicap — our readers share our articles because they can’t get writing like this anywhere else, so we don’t have to beg Zuckerberg for shares.


Next up on the list there’s former Bush Press Secretary Dana Perino, from the occasionally schizophrenic Fox news channel. Her channel can’t make up its mind if it likes ratings or repeating anti-Trump rhetoric, so they do both!

Also originally from Fox but now with CNN is S.E. Cupp, who was busy posting airplane selfies on social media this morning. Perhaps the S.E. should stand for social engineering? I wouldn’t be surprised if some of the movers and shakers at the meeting were sliding into her DMs via smartphone at the same time they pretend to agree with her vapid statements on how social media can shape elections.

She’s about as relevant to Millennials as Google Plus, as my favourite columnist (me) wrote yesterday.

Zuckerberg also invited Zac Moffatt, who is lucky that most conservatives don’t know who he is. He was the digital director of Mitt Romney’s campaign. What better way to get Facebook to play fair by bringing out big guns like the guy who snatched defeat from the jaws of Republican victory in 2012?

Rumors continue to swirl about Mitt getting back into the race. Perhaps Zac is hoping to pick up some tips from Zuck about how to sabotage the Republican campaign a second time.

Arthur Brooks, President of the illustrious American Enterprise Institute, certainly sounds like an impressive choice by Facebook. But that’s all establishment conservatives are good for, isn’t it? Sounding impressive. In reality, Brooks has spent much of the past year demonstrating his irrelevance in the face of the changing direction of the conservative movement.

Brooks authored a piece for the famously conservative New York Times during the primary season in which he compared the rise of Donald Trump to a “zombie apocalypse” sweeping America. Well, it is a zombie apocalypse — it’s just that the Republican establishment are the zombies and they’re the ones facing apocalypse.

I’m not sure if everyone at the meeting today has been bitten, but we should probably lock some of them in a room until we’re sure.

Talk about a motley crew. Barely any of these people have relevance to conservatives under 50. It’s a ship of fools with kooky Glenn Beck at the helm, slamming his face into junk food and threatening suicide every few days.

I wouldn’t be surprised if by the end of the day they’ve formed a Church Of Latter-Day Cucks, promising to end it all if they don’t get 500 comments and 1,000 likes on every dim-witted Facebook screed about what a bastard Donald Trump is.

Zuckerberg has displayed tremendous hubris in thinking that this ragtag bunch can dispel deep concerns the public have about his political biases and those of the network he runs. Facing me down in a live debate, as I asked him to, would have been much smarter.

But you know what: it doesn’t even need to be a debate. Ten minutes of interview — of real conversation, broadcast live on his own platform — would have been just fine. And the offer is still open!

Zuckerberg believes that his world is a game of Clash of Clans, or one of the other highly lucrative Facebook games. His army is beefed up through big spending. He feels he is at least five moves ahead of his conservative opponents and if you look at the CVs of some of the people at this summit, it certainly looks like he’s right.

But the real power on the right stayed miles away and is keeping its powder dry for the social network’s next slip-up. Zuck is going to learn that in real life, pride comes before a fall. Also: the dangerous choice is the one with the greatest potential rewards.

Read the the whole thing
And there you have the problem for Zuckerberg.  The guy who won the biggest business lottery jackpot since Bill Gates is ultimately powerless to select his own opponents. Everyone who lined up on their knees in front of the Facebook gloryhole is now discredited.  

The left can't select a Legitimate Voice of the Right anymore.  We won't accept their paradigms anymore.  We won't accept their March of History anymore.  We wont' accept their hand chosen leaders for our movement anymore.

Welcome to a Brave New World lefties!  


Jon M said...

"Everyone who lined up on their knees in front of the Facebook gloryhole is now discredited."

Yowch. Powerful stuff. Turns out the democratization of information is bad for Democrats uber alles. If Al Gore had known, he would have strangled it in its crib.

Interesting take on Gore Vidal. Is Milo the new Vidal?

Cataline Sergius said...

I would have to say no.

Milo has better hair and a better accent...that isn't fake.

Also, Vidal liked to pretend that having annoyed Bill Buckley put his life in constant danger.

Milo on the other hanbd lays it on the line for real. He's got actual"cut your head off in the name of Allah" enemies.