Why the U.S. Far-Right Believes Obvious Scams
Journalist Luke Mogelson published The Storm Is Here: An American Crucible on September 13. In 2020, he talked to USAmericans about their political involvement, and this book especially looks at the protests that followed George Floyd’s murder by police on May 25, 2020 and the tension that continued up to the attack on the Capitol on January 6, 2021.
The attack on the Capitol was “a tumultuous passage between two distinct eras of conservatism,” he explains. That’s because 2020 was a year in which conservatives lost their longtime consensus in favor of law enforcement, but “neither conservatives nor the police were forced to confront what this meant for their alliance” while Trump still held power. After Trump lost the election, the right-wing felt forced to renegotiate their changing attitudes toward police, which begins to explain why some police at the Capitol were “cheered and hugged byTrump supporters seconds after being assaulted by them.”
Deciding Whom To Hate
White Christian nationalists want to continue believing that they inherently ought to be at the top of a social hierarchy because of their race, religion, language, and citizenship. They also want to believe they have a chance to rise even higher in the hierarchy because capitalism always dangles before them opportunities to make infinite money, opportunities they might want to seize even if they involve exploiting and scamming others.
A member of the KKK wrote upon the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991: “Who will be the enemy we all agree to hate?” That Klansman soon decided that the KKK should hate the federal government and the “New World Order” that supposedly was taking over.
Today, the far-right still seeks to establish common targets. In Mogelson’s interviews and analyses, some white nationalists claimed that “Jews lay behind all manner of diabolism…from the media to child pornography,” though these antisemites alternately and contradictorily depict Jews as plotting to take over the world or as docilely marching themselves to the gas chambers. Other white nationalists warned that “the planet was infiltrated by shape-shifting reptiles from outer…