The alt-right (a hip term for a loose array of Nazis, white supremacists and internet trolls with few ideals save causing chaos) has officially split. The sordid alliance that crawled from the depths of the internet to play a role in electing Trump decisively parted in two for good on Sunday in Washington D.C.
The two factions faced off against each other: the alt-right proper (the white supremacists) led by oft-punched ideologue Richard Spencer, and the alt-lite (also known as the “new right”) led by Mike Cernovich, the conspiracy theorist once charged with rape.
Cernovich and Spencer don’t get on; this open civil war among the ranks of the alt-right has been brewing for a while.
Spencer’s Lincoln Memorial rally involved top white nationalist leaders describing Cernovich’s “alt-light” in various scathing terms, describing them as hangers-on that merely seek fame.
Mike Enoch (who lost much credibility after the exposition of his wife as a Jewess), James Allsup and other notable Spencerites were present, many of them trying to rope in Lincoln Memorial tourists for discussions on white nationalism, albeit with very limited success indeed (and a few shouting matches with passers by).
Spencer’s lot have since become quite disconcerted with Trump (his bombing of Assad, their favourite fascist dictator, caused considerable rage). Right-wing YouTuber James Allsup spoke about Trump at the rally.
“When we see President Trump in office, it’s our job to hold him accountable,” Allsup said during the rally. “Since we were the ones who supported those positions, no one else will hold him accountable.”
However, there are about 318 million Americans (some 53% of whom dislike Trump) and Spencer’s rally managed to turn up a grand total of 300. The Alt-Right online marage would have you thinking that Spencer has legions of adoring stormtroopers.
In reality multitudes of scrawny youths and paunchy men seem to operate multiple accounts from the shadows, most of whom still seem reluctant to venture into the real world (especially after Spencer took two fists to the face).
The Alt-Right (before the schism) did indeed help to elect Trump via extensive memeing and flooding social media with propaganda and posts, bleeding their ideas into the public consciousness – which is precisely what they need to do to win. But in the human scheme of things it was merely one drop in the ocean. Then again, in the age of technology, you could easily argue that tangible presence often means little.
However, their lack of a real-life presence is why their frequent beseeching of Trump to go full-Hitler have fallen on deaf ears. Trump knows that losing Spencer’s support matters for little; if he can alienate half the country and still stay in office then he has no problem ostracising a group of trolls.
Cernovich’s rally was even smaller than Spencer’s. Around 150 people showed up for a considerably less animated rally and a few speeches.
“They’re utter cucks,” said Spencer.
An inevitable schism
It wasn’t hard to see this coming. The alt-right claims their superior genes and ideas make them infinitely superior to Muslims and various civilisations stretching back thousands of years, yet can barely last 7 without splitting off into meme-spawning cults of dubious sustainability outside of Twitter.
This is simply because the “alt-right” umbrella is too large to remain cohesive. Some of its members think Jews should be exterminated, some (with Bannon springing to mind) have no problem with Israel whatsoever.
Some are vehemently opposed to homosexuality and sodomy, others are ostentatiously gay and support paedophilia. Some lean towards Rand Paul-style libertarianism with a dash of fascism, others desire an authoritarian dictatorship.
The alt-right seems to think that it can undo generations of hedonism and nihilism in America and Europe by “sh*tposting” memes and staging small gatherings in which participants yell sensationalist slogans and display badly drawn Pepes.
Even if they had three times the supporters, their ideals are simply too vague, nonsensical and wishy-washy to ever roll back the rot gripping American society.
Spencer himself thinks faith is what a strong society needs (and he’s right)… Yet doesn’t believe in God, nor does he think you should make faith part of governance in order to stop the legalisation of destructive things. He views homosexuality as destructive to a healthy society and family life (which it is), yet he sees no need to prohibit same-sex acts or gay marriage.
Mike Cernovich believes immigration means “white genocide” and yet he’s married to an Iranian Shi’ite*. David Duke talks about “Christian heritage”, yet enjoys gambling and fornicating. Paul Joseph Watson enjoys railing against climate change, yet doesn’t experience the climate much because (in his own words) he never leaves his apartment.
I’m not amazed that the alt-right has split. I’m highly amused that this gaggle of delusionary malcontents think they’re some sort of brave, Nordic warriors of truth and justice. The Vikings of old had force, strength and cohesion. This lot have Twitter.
*One article on Cernovich described his wife as a “secular Muslim”. I’m left wondering what’s next, an atheist Muslim? A Christian Muslim?