The rise and fall of the "Anti-Woke" industrial complex

Originally published at: The rise and fall of the "Anti-Woke" industrial complex | Boing Boing


“Is It Possible to Be Both Moderate and Anti-Woke?”



I’m currently woke but it’s Sunday, it’s raining, and we don’t have to work so about noon I’ll be anti woke on the couch.


The New Yorker has had for a long time a weird fascination with the far right. They report on them like they’re some exotic species. Unlike the New York Times, they don’t try to pander to the right by continual both-siderism and by hiring writers who themselves are far right, but they also don’t really convey that these people are dangerous. People who are “anti-woke” are really fundamentally against tolerance and diversity, and willing to deny civil rights to other people they don’t like. This organization was hapless, but was nevertheless trying to shift the frame of political discussion, to make that kind of attitude acceptable.


The chin-stroking zentrum is boxes within boxes, all ultimately serving the ends of right-wing billionaires and their noxious allies/guard labour. I’d call them Useful Idiots but they all know where the money is coming from.

There is no middle ground with fascists and white supremacists. You either oppose them or you don’t, and a lack of opposition is the same as the latter.


Betteridge’s Law is vindicated once again.


”Is It Possible to Be Both Moderate and Anti-Woke?”

This contrived question is working very hard to avoid sounding like plain old Both-Side-ism.

This FAIR organization sounds like another flavour of stochastic terrorism. Or perhaps stochastic fake balance? The key line is this:

fair was basically virtue-signalling for the anti-woke,” he said. “It was not an organization designed to actually do anything.”

This is exactly like stochastic terrorism. It’s both a bug and a feature of the alt-right. They can’t quite actually ever come together to coordinate action, but the movement still creates action indirectly*. Here’s a great video covering this idea:

How to Radicalize a Normie

*yes I know they have coordinated on things. Please don’t jump on me. Watch the video.


Ain’t a single one of them who’s “moderate”.


I’m not even sure it’s possible to be moderate right now. When one side is actively trying to suppress large groups of people (LGBTQ, BIPOC, poor people, socialists, Democrats), trying to take a middle position and pretend that both ends are bad is no better than actually taking the right wing position. As many have said, if there are 9 Nazis in a room and one person remaining silent, there are 10 Nazis in the room.


Yes, exactly. What does “moderate” even mean any more? People are finding a middle ground between fascism and everything else? That line is too thin to stand on. Claiming “moderate” requires believing that a reasonable non-fascist Right still exists. That’s a fantasy for people who never had to think about politics before and don’t want to start.


To be Moderate is to not believe in anything. They cannot because believing in anything forces them to take a side. Today they are between the liberals and the fascists, in twenty years time they may be between the liberals and the communists. They will still be Moderates.

They aren’t even nihilists, that would mean they would have to take a stand against everything.


Great! I’m waiting for FIRE to fall apart now.


Well now, they’re not against tolerance and diversity, they’re just against the groups that are advocating for tolerance and diversity being mean to people who are against tolerance and diversity (we’re gonna need a bigger eyeroll)

Fucking Christ, they’re like a shell corporation for fascism.


Chen and Boghossian had workshopped a pitch to the Manhattan Institute, a conservative think tank, for a project to create “a modern-day Death Star” to wage “ideological warfare” on the “enemies of modernity”;

Here we go again. When you liken your project to a fascist terror weapon designed to destroy inhabited planets and everything living on it, an act that would make the word genocide look for reinforcements, maybe, just maybe, you’re the baddies?

The later reference to Obi-Wan is kind of weird in that context.

Manhattan Institute is a member of the Koch State Policy Network.

Tagged and bagged.


The question also doesn’t make sense. What is “moderate”? Politically moderate, I guess. That’s fine. But “anti-woke”? The peddlers of “anti-woke” ideology have struggled to define what the heck “woke” is. Because they’re play-acting at academia, they can’t come out and use the functional definition they and everyone on the right uses—“ ‘woke’ means anything I don’t like”—because then their vaunted pseudo-academic position would seem meaningless. Which, of course, it is.


He has gleefully, trollishly launched legions of his followers on social media harassment campaigns against several personal friends of mine — all women of color, naturally — who dared to interview experts on things like human biology and human sexuality who purported such radical beliefs as “trans people exist” and "human sexuality is way more complicated than your middle school sex ed class explained it.”

Even among people with academic or professional degrees, there’s a tendency and desire to really get out over your skis. For people without professional training in a particular field, they always seem to revert back to middle school, as though that understanding of the world is the controlling one and all others are merely theoretical.

My partner has a Ph.D. in computational chemistry. She can only roll her eyes when people on the Internet talk about “quantum physics”—because she has had to use actual quantum equations in her research. I once mentioned to her something about the different electron shells that we learned about in high school and she said it’s even more complicated than that.

Could it be that the world is really complex and in high school we’re presented with a simplified version of it simply because we don’t yet have the training to understand the way things actually are? No, clearly it’s the people with years of study who are wrong.


This. This is how you identify as “moderate” right now. You declare that you respect the rights of people to viciously deny basic human rights to other people, and also respect the rights of those people being denied their basic human rights. It’s quite simple, really!


Yeah…see my above comment about the Nazis, except this time, the 10th person says “Don’t call them Nazis! That’s mean!”


They all know exactly what woke means, though. It means being aware of social issues, and treating minorities with respect. They just don’t want to say so because it doesn’t make them sound great, and they can communicate just fine using the implicit term.


Sorry about a descriptive, factual acronym?

Oxfam are spineless assholes.