Saturday, 3 December 2016

A TALE OF TWO CONFERENCES: REFLECTIONS ON THE NPI AND ADL SUMMITS

Greenblatt and Spencer

by Basil Benton
"The two most precious things this side of the grave are our reputation and our life. But it is to be lamented that the most contemptible whisper may deprive us of the one, and the weakest weapon of the other."~Charles Caleb Colton
It was with some trepidation that I arrived in Washington D.C. for the NPI Conference, expecting demonstrations and protests, especially since Trump had won the election. Unfortunately, between the brashness of demonstrators and the fallout from the media after the conference, little attention has been paid to its actual content. Indeed, I was eager to read Matt Forney's piece for RightOn, but this almost exclusively addressed confrontations with the demonstrators. Nevertheless, I thank him for doing so, as their "deplorable" behavior was completely ignored by the mainstream media, which managed to pick only the pits from our bowl of cherries.

PETER BRIMELOW seemed somewhat squeamish, and out of his element, explaining that immigration reform is not an issue confined to the alt-right, and that his site VDARE.com has documented this issue, both immigration trends and their impact on the economy, as well as debating its impact on public policy, for some time. Jared Taylor deftly handled media questions, and quickly dismissed the notion that alt-right ideas were "racist" in the pejorative sense.

KEVIN MacDONALD, of course, addressed the JQ. His thoughts were most welcome to this writer who had just attended the ADL conference in New York a mere 48 hours earlier, but more on that momentarily.

Despite the Alt-Right welcoming Trump's victory, it is rather amusing and frustrating that he and Bannon are both Christian Zionists. Even the Chief Rabbi of Jerusalem has come under fire for calling Trump a "Messiah," particularly with regard to his public statement that the United States will open an embassy in Jerusalem, hardly an action that will be well received by militant Islam, or every other member of the United Nations, for that matter.

Naturally, no one addressed the possibility of Trump being a Trojan Horse, what with his possible appointment of Romney as Secretary of State, and his coziness with Bibi, from who he received his first congratulatory call. I thought Sheldon Adelson's support of Trump was clear enough, but this is made doubly confusing with Soros and the Saudis supporting Hillary. Win, lose or draw, the Jews have covered all contingencies.

Panel discussion: Spencer, Brimelow, Taylor, MacDonald, Woes

MILLENNIAL WOES
seemed out of his depth, and I say that sympathetically, making comparisons between the Trump victory and Brexit. Apparently, he is personally dealing with the consequences of a demonizing media campaign and his affiliation with Richard Spencer and NPI.

HENRIK PALGREN and LANA LOKTEFF, charming as ever, produced and broadcast the entire 9 hours of the conference on Red Ice TV, a spinoff of Red Ice Radio. I applaud them for their levity and courage, as well as their indefatigable efforts. Their interview with a stunned Richard Spencer in the aftermath of the conference is telling. Palgren and Lokteff complain that the liberal media have no sense of humor, that the Roman salute is a multi-textual reference, etc.,, and referred to the subtle irony of having it thrown back in their faces lost—in short, that they missed the point. Did they?

In a 2013 interview with Salon, Richard Spencer said: "We have to look good," […] adding that if his movement means" being part of something that is crazed or ugly or vicious or just stupid, no one is going to want to be a part of it."

Prior to the conference, Spencer was interviewed by NPR, who dutifully warned its audience of the reprehensible ideas Spencer espoused. When asked about swastikas and the hoods historically donned by the KKK, Spencer evaded the questions, chalking them up to issues of free speech. He went on to advocate for a White ethnostate, a safe haven for European Americans, which is all fine and good, and I suppose it is remarkable considering he did it on NPR. Whether he has brass balls or is foolhardy or both is for the reader to decide.

I suppose some in this forum will find even these remarks innocuous and too tame. I'd say they've OD'd on red-pills. He could have, if only out of diplomacy, distanced himself from such associations. But perhaps I am wrong here. But the question has to be asked: How will the Alt-Right actually be able to become the "intellectual vanguard" of the Trump movement?

Perhaps because I am somewhat older, if not wiser (but at least more cynical), I instinctively sensed that this would result in a public relations conflagration. As Peter Brimelow remarked (and I am paraphrasing here) NPI should present itself as other policy groups such as NAACP, BLM, or ACLU do, as a civil rights organization. I agree with him. Of course, we all know that Black Lives Matter espouses hate and advocates violence, but no media outlet, apart from those on the Alt-Right, will say it.

While I have the utmost respect and admiration for Richard Spencer, as an intellectual and orator, I believe that under the circumstances, a little diplomacy and PR savvy would have been in order. We won! We needn't gloat about it. Naturally, spirits were high, (if not the whole crowd by that point) but daggers were drawn, especially with the enemy (and perhaps a mole or two) in the room. I am sure that many will attack me for saying this, but I think that Mr. Spencer lacked judgment, and this will not have been the first time. In Budapest, Mr. Spencer was thrown in jail for essentially talking too much, that is, to the media, and naively assumed that despite our right to our opinions, there would be no political and social repercussions.

A hidden Jewish reference at the Conference that the
media failed to pick up on: Michelangelo's (((David))).
Always remember that you say can and will be used against you, regardless of our so-called first amendment rights of free speech.

Of course, even the likes of Ann Coulter shrugged with a tweet, asking whether the national guard should be called out in response to a handful of scoundrels. But that's the point. She is suggesting that the media is making a mountain out of a molehill, in effect, unwittingly dignifying something that it hopes will be ignored.

One wants to be taken seriously, not deemed a serious threat. After NPI every notion about the Alt-Right, for bad rather than good, has been reinforced. But whether this state of affairs is good or bad for the movement, only time will tell.

I cannot help feeling that Spencer welcomes this notoriety, and regards the well-being and livelihood of those who publicly support him as a lesser concern. You shouldn't invite a hostile liberal media and proceed to allow our ideas to become reduced to a Hitler Youth rally, replete with "Roman" salutes, and references to "Golem" and the "Luegenpresse," unless that was the point. I don't know. I think that we ought to have been on our best behavior, as the slanted and biased coverage of all things identitarian demonstrates.

Recourse to common sense, invoking irony and "cheekiness" as Spencer is wont to do, won't suffice here. On the one hand, I think that the controversy, while propelling us even further into the limelight, could very well backfire. On the other, maybe this is exactly the type of publicity we need. Alt-Right ideas are, as far as the liberals are concerned, inherently stigmatizing. But maybe things are so far gone and people are so fed up with the politically correct status quo that they might resonate with the Alt Right in unexpected ways.

*************

The reader may disagree with these speculations, but I bet he (or she) hadn't attended the ADL summit on Anti-Semitism, the first of its kind, held in New York City a mere two days prior to the NPI fiasco.

Yes, yours truly, undercover, as it were, went to the summit "Never is Now!"—with its clear reference to the Holocaust, that had about a thousand attendees.

What I heard and saw there frightened me. The ADL has taken upon itself, under its new executive leadership Jonathan Greenblatt, to make the bold move of going from a clearinghouse and watchdog of anti-Semitism, to becoming something more offensive, with activism, on campuses and social media, with a K-12 Holocaust curriculum, to boot, to address what it deems is the new "New Anti-Semitism," that is, Anti-Israelism and the Anti-Zionism it perceives on both the extreme right and left, and everywhere in between, as the BDS campaigns gain currency among millennials and universities in the United States and abroad.

In fact, the ADL has developed its media arsenal aggressively, posting a global index of "probable" anti-Semitism gathered from polling no fewer than four billion respondents—yes, one in four people are "infected" with Anti-Semitic views, even those promoted by Jews themselves, and the ADL is hard at work developing a vaccine. This "solution" includes more social justice warriors reporting so-called "hate speech" on social media, and campaigning for inclusivity and diversity (on their own terms). No one should be surprised that Richard Spencer's Twitter account came under attack so swiftly (and others will follow, to be sure), if my understanding is correct.

Damn! The Jews are even better
at Anti-Semitism than us.
Many Jews themselves, so-called "self-hating Jews," harbor anti-Semitic views, for example, Noam Chomsky and Norman Finkelstein, vocal critics of Israel, are deemed just as bad.

Let's not forget poor old Ursula Haverbeck, who is now in prison merely for claiming that Auschwitz was a mere labor camp. "Never is now" indeed! Let the censorship begin.

In his keynote speech, Greenblatt invoked the Nuremberg Laws whereby Jews were forced to register as such by decree of law during the Third Reich, Apparently, Trump's proposed policy of extreme vetting of Muslims is the modern-day equivalent.

The ADL cleverly, if not ingenuously, feigns concern for the plight of Muslims. All "decent people," naturally, despise racism and hate, so the ADL in the spirit of inclusivity is on a witch hunt for every form of intolerance, whether real, imagined, or invented.

Transcending the heights of chutzpah, he went on to say, "So I pledge to you right here and now, because I care about the fight against anti-Semitism, that if one day in these United States, if one day Muslim-Americans will be forced to register their identities, then that is the day that this proud Jew will register as a Muslim." I almost lost my kosher lunch.

Greenblatt went on to say that Jewish journalists:
"...who were harassed and terrorized online are now coming home to find anti-Semitic taunts in their mailboxes. And the chief curator of a website that hosted many of the most hateful ideas of the so-called Alt-Right has been appointed to a high post in the new administration."
Yes, absurd hyperbole, but I hope the reader takes to heart that this is what they perceive. This is of course before images of Spencer and a few rascals were broadcast around the world. If you are nervous, you should be. Everyone concerned has or will become a person of interest.

Apparently Nine Inch Nails are about to sue.
Some believe that the Alt Right is a unified and well-defined group, like the liberal media, and the ADL. I think it is a broad spectrum, a worldview, the adherents of which are more alike than not; that is not to say, however, that they all share the same ideas. Unlike Mr. Spencer, who lives in Montana, I live in the ultraliberal northeast. You could probably count voters for Trump in my town on one hand.

If he wants the alt right to become the "head" of the Trump "body," he had better start using his own head, as we all should, lest we splinter and become marginalized, squandering the great opportunity before us. Not everyone can be red-pilled overnight. Let's continue to work hard; but also, work smart. Many climb, but few reach the summit of Everest, as the last few hundred feet are the deadliest.

 

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