I have to admit that when white supremacist Nazi sympathizer marched through Charlottesville back in 2017 chanting “Jews will not replace us”, I was baffled. As Jonathan Sarna (scholar of American Jewish history, modern Judaism and Israel studies at Brandeis University) points out, “Jews are barely replacing themselves, let alone the white population as a whole.” How exactly did those angry white morons think Jews were going to “replace” them? In their daily lives? At their jobs? In their relationships – with their wives and kids (which reminds me of a Grouch Marx line from “Monkey Business” where he tells a luxury liner’s captain to go home to his wife or “Better yet, I’ll go home to your wife and outside the improvement, she’ll never know the difference!”)? How exactly would that work even – and which Jews, I’d like to know – are applying for those “open positions”? On what job site does one even go to find such openings – “Jews-WILL-Replace-Us-Dot-Com?” But then, what these white putzes (they’re putzes not schmucks – schmucks at least have skill of one kind or another; they just misuse or abuse it like a schmuck while putzes have zero redeeming qualities because they’re putzes!) are whining about is a “centuries-old [fear] that Jews, in league with peoples of color, are engaged in a nefarious plot to destroy the white Christian civilization.“
Boy, it doesn’t take a whole hell of a lot to destroy white, Christian civilization, does it? And it doesn’t say much for white, Christian civilization either if it can be destroyed so easily. In its defense, white, Christian culture has produced great art, architecture, literature and (here and there) thought. White Christian culture also has produced staggering destruction. In Guns, Germs & Steel, historian Jared Diamond laid out the reasons why Europeans succeeded in colonizing the world like no one else: mostly because no one else bothered to do it.
On the one hand, good on the Europeans for being ambitious. On the other, European ambitions brutalized the rest of the world. If European pathogens hadn’t decimated the Native American populations before Europeans successfully established a foothold here in the Americas, it’s likely the Europeans would have a far harder time establishing that foothold; it’s not a dead certainty that they would have (or even could have) militarily defeated Native forces had those Native forces outnumbered them as they would have except for European pathogens decimating their populations. Europeans got it into their heads that they “took” the Americas from the peoples who lived here because their culture (and armies) were superior. It was NEVER the case. The only thing “superior” about Europeans is the lethality of their localized pathogens over the lethality of native North or South American pathogens.
Thus Europeans have always walked with such swagger. As it was said of George W. Bush’s luck to be born a Bush, Europeans “were born on third base and thought they’d hit a triple.” Still, being born rich can have its challenges. It’s easy to piss away money – even millions of dollars. As hard as making money in the first place can be, the larger challenge always ends up being how to keep the money once earned. I speak from experience here: it sucks to be broke after you’ve had a “whiff” of money. It’s not much different from “conquering” show business. Yeah, sure, climbing that mountain is damned hard. But climbing it ain’t nothing compared to the very real hardships of staying on the mountain. That’s what motivates all the corruption: those on the mountain who want to stay there at all costs – even if they no longer deserve to be there.
Monopolies give their monopolists a much easier time in their chosen business environment because they no longer have to compete in it. Even seeming “competitors” are really just posing at best – like airlines or rental car companies all charging the same fares or rates because they’re all owned by the same three companies. Or because, behind the scenes, they’re cooperating with each other.
The whole point of an Old Boys Club (or a monopoly) is that the competitors who are supposed to be competing are colluding instead. In the end, a whole corrupt culture of collusion arises – as it has. Here in America, we’re pretty clearer that one hand is always looking out for the other. Money looks out for power and power looks out for money. That is the white hegemony white power wants to preserve forever. The marketplace can be brutally democratic; good ideas flourish while crap ideas (usually) die quickly (if after a bit of flash). It rewards those willing to compete in it.
And THAT is what scares white supremacists.
Hell, it’s what scares conservatives in general.
Republicans understand marketing much more than they understand government. But then, when you’re always trying to convince people you aren’t in fact the criminal you are, you’re going to learn some neat sleights of hand to keep the side show crowd adequately bamboozled. Literally every explanation a conservative or Republican ever gives for literally anything is pure, unadulterated bullshit kabuki. It’s the worst kind of word salad – composed of bits and pieces of utter rot all over-dressed in the vilest self-serving cynicism. Think of George W Bush standing on the deck of the carrier USS Abraham Lincoln, the words “Mission Accomplished” bannered in red, white and blue behind him.
“Mission accomplished” our collective ass!
It’s not like conservatives and their fellow travelers are that hard to translate. Their dream now is the same dream it’s always been: white guys get to be in charge of everyone else forever! Back in the day, when they had superior numbers, they could do it by sheer force of will and those numbers. These days, as diversity obliterates the basis for white hegemony, the only tool left to white supremacists is what political power they still clutch onto.
It’s not as if white supremacists couldn’t do what the rest of us always have to do – compete for political power. They can approach retail politics the way everyone else does (well, the way Progressives and independents do) by trying to entice voters via their ideas and policies. Conservatives don’t do that anymore. We all know why.
Whatever would Republicans do if we made the clever move to stop equating “cheating to win” with “winning”? Would they suddenly find themselves caught out? Would they suddenly feel bare-assed naked? I doubt it. Republicans cheat to win because they fear they can no longer compete to win.
That ain’t me talking, that’s a whole insurrection and a relationship with Russia that still needs explaining. Republicans, it turns out, would do literally ANYTHING instead of the hard work of competing. Why, they’d even conspire with Russia to do it.