When an army is defeated on the battlefield, the first thing that happens is the lines break and order breaks down. Some units surrender right away, while others try to reform and keep fighting. Still others will retreat, finding the quickest way to escape in order to avoid capture or potential slaughter. The military saying is that you learn everything about an army when they are defeated.
That’s true of political arrangements as well. A political party or an ideological movement takes on a very different character when it runs into trouble. That’s because we get to see inside once it is cracked open. The things that were hidden behind the rhetoric, tactics and institutions are not only made public, but the motivations behind them are made public. It’s never a pretty picture.
The feuding and bloodletting we are seeing in the American political class is one of those rare chances to see behind the curtain of power, at what really is going on with our rulers. The other day the NYTimes dropped a bombshell report on how Chuck Schumer, Marco Rubio and Roger Ailes tried to hoodwink conservatives into buying off on amnesty. The gist of the story is it was an orchestrated effort to have Fox News sell a Democrat policy to conservatives.
As much as this damages Fox News, it also damages the Left. Their voters loathe the idea that the fix is in and that both parties plot in secret to hose the voters. Liberals hate this more than conservatives, who tend to suspect it anyway. In the past, this is the sort of story that would never be reported, but today the lines are breaking and it is a free-for-all. The NYTimes is taking a shot at Fox, even if it helps Trump, who they hate.
Of course, the on-going implosion of conservative media offers the best glimpse into the reality of the so-called conservative movement. We see some of them pledging to support Hillary Clinton. Others have broken into the old liberal chants from the Bush years. Still others are claiming Trump is a member of the KKK, the Nazi Party, the Italian Mafia and a Progressive Democrat. I guess that’s what George Bush meant when he said he wanted to be a “uniter” not a divider.
The shocking part for many Americans is seeing people who have spent decades claiming to be their champion, suddenly turn on them and call them morons and fascists. But it’s what happens when the lines break down and there is no longer anyone around to maintain order. We see the true nature of the combatants. In this case, most of the people in conservative media never cared much for their customers. The audience is just there to be farmed, like cattle.
Scrape away the ranting and raving and what you see is that all of them have been committed to the open borders project. Mickey Kaus pointed out a year ago that the simplest way to derail Donald Trump was for the party to adopt the polices of Jeff Sessions. These are wildly popular with voters and well within the traditions of America. They could not do it. They were willing to go to war with their own voters in order to save the open borders dream.
There are plenty of examples from history where the ruling elite has decided that a popular belief had to be purged. Wodinism was purged from the British Isles by force. Whole villages were forcibly converted to the new religion. This only worked because the people doing the converting were believers too and their new religion offered something of value to the converted. If Christianity was good enough for the king, then the people could go along with it.
The fantasy of open borders turns this on its head. The managerial elites live in bunkered communities, immune from the costs of open borders. They live in these Potemkin villages that resemble college campuses, where the diversity is only skin deep. Everyone has an advanced degree, a job in government and a worldview to match it. The people they plan to forcibly convert are the people they intend to stick with the cost of it, while the elites plan to enjoy the benefits.
The insanity of this plan is that it assumes things about humans that, if true, would spell the end of the managerial class. After all, if people are willing to go along with having the value of their citizenship vaporized, that means they no longer see it as having any value. How in the world will the managerial class command loyalty from the people when there is no longer any point in being loyal? After all, you can’t have patriotic duty without patriotism and you can’t have that if it no longer has any value.
What we are seeing here is something about how the Cloud People view the Dirt People. Loyalty to a society has always been anchored in loyalty to the people in that society. A man is willing to take up the sword on behalf of the king, because the king is doing the same for his subjects. In other words, you’re not fighting for the king, you’re fighting for what the king embodies, what the king represents. Loyalty flows in both directions.
What’s happening is a realization on the part of the Dirt People that the Cloud People hold them in contempt. What started out as some small skirmishes over the last decade, have now turned into a full blown war and the lines of the political establishment have broken. We’re getting to see the ugly truth that lies behind them. For most people, this is infuriating and that’s why they have flocked to the evil dirt monster that is Donald Trump
It’s also why the bellowing from conservative media over Trump has backfired. The people are angry at the Republicans for their treachery. They are hardly going to listen to the party’s propaganda organs lecture them on the need to be loyal in the fight against the dirt monster. If anything, like the peasants in the Italian countryside when Alaric approached Rome, they will side with the wrecker.