June 14, 2020

WHEN YOU’VE LOST AN EDITOR OF ROLLING STONE. Matt Taibbi: The American Press Is Destroying Itself.

“It feels liberating to say after years of tiptoeing around the fact, but the American left has lost its mind. It’s become a cowardly mob of upper-class social media addicts, Twitter Robespierres who move from discipline to discipline torching reputations and jobs with breathtaking casualness. The leaders of this new movement are replacing traditional liberal beliefs about tolerance, free inquiry, and even racial harmony with ideas so toxic and unattractive that they eschew debate, moving straight to shaming, threats, and intimidation. They are counting on the guilt-ridden, self-flagellating nature of traditional American progressives, who will not stand up for themselves, and will walk to the Razor voluntarily.”

At Townhall, Matt Vespa writes, “But if you shame, deplatform, and purge those liberals who haven’t gone totally insane from your ranks, I could see how abolishing the police could seem like a possibility if you’re a lefty loon. The media appears to be a place where there can be no debate, where its writers work in fear, and the political correctness enforcers acting like ISIS’ religious police watch their every move. Yeah, I can see why that’s causing the liberal media to self-destruct. Submit or die is the special of the day for the American Left. And that is why I’m proud not to be a liberal or a Democrat. Taibbi’s post is lengthy but worth a full read.”

Related: I Don’t Believe The Media. The radical revolution that has destroyed confidence in journalism.

More: Old and busted? The 1619 Project. The New Hotness? The 1793 Project:

Given that so many cancellations hinge on the accusation that safety is being undermined, I would suggest a different metaphor than Mao. Mine is no less hyperbolic, but it puts the focus where my reporting—and Haidt and Lukianoff’s research—suggest it should be. In 1793, the Committee of Public Safety took charge of the French Revolution on a promise to “make terror the order of the day.” Evidence-free show trials and ideological purges followed, consistent with the radical leaders’ belief that public safety requires public terror.

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Ironically, the same subset of people ostensibly exercised about emotional safety—the woke left—seem frequently inclined to level unsubstantiated accusations that inflict emotional harm. This makes it difficult to believe that these Twitter warriors’ true aim is the promotion of psychological comfort. Did any of them consider Uhlig’s mental health after the man was baselessly accused? Does anyone care about Roman, who probably did not expect her enemies to ransack her Myspace page for evidence of racism and then pillory her for a photo taken when she was 23? What about Shor, thrown to the wolves for making a reasonable objection to what one wing of the protesters was doing?

As Robby Soave of Reason concludes, “That sounds like terror, not safety. Call it the 1793 Project.”

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