In the bar and restaurant business managing one’s clientele is well understood, though the tactics are seldom publicly acknowledged. For example, a restaurant targeting an upscale crowd will avoid anything that might attract Hillbillies more at home at a Cracker Barrel. No need for a “No White Trash” sign— the unwelcome customers just feel out of place and go elsewhere.
Similar methods inform today’s ideological landscape and while exclusionary tactics exist across the spectrum, let me dwell on those associated with what has been called Conservative Inc. Though Conservative Inc. offers a variety of perspectives, they are all exceedingly careful if not downright cowardly regarding certain topics since the slightest misstep can produce excommunication from the world of respectability. Indeed, when it comes to being ever so sensitive about giving offense to “protected” groups such as gays and Hispanics, Conservative Inc. outshines the most rabid PC college snowflakes. Recall how Heritage immediately fired Jason Richwine when it discovered that his Harvard dissertation acknowledged possible problems if the US were to import millions of low-IQ immigrants.
Foremost in the off-limits agenda are frank discussions involving topics of race, immigration, sexual preferences and, most critically, anything touching on biological differences across groups. In the world of reputable conservatism, it is unthinkable to even hint, for example, that nation building, let alone democracy, in the Third World is impossible since those countries have a set-in stone average IQ of 85 (or less) implying that their populations are too inept for anything beyond a brutal dictatorship.
It is not that these taboo topics never arise within the boundaries of respectable conservatives but when they do, discussions are ever so delicate and overflow with euphemisms. If, for example, the subject of black crime creeps into a forum, it is safely sanitized by explaining it in terms of the presence of Democratic mayors, how liberals hate the police and provide too lenient judges, why excessive economic regulation undermines urban job creation, the impact of fatherless families, a dysfunctional culture, horrific teacher union-dominated schools and similar inoffensive explanations miles removed from fingering incorrigible, unemployable, crime-prone underclass blacks.
How can Conservative Inc., like a restaurant catering to a tony clientele, shield itself from unwashed heretics inclined to raise taboo topics? The answer to this question begins with the character of the undomesticated: with few exceptions, those prone to raise embarrassing issues are typically working or lower middle-class whites.
This reality acknowledged, the easiest way to exclude the ideological hoi polloi is to make it expensive to partake of respectable conservatism. If a conference is to be held, price it beyond the reach of the unwashed. Hefty registration fees, banquet charges and hotel rates and strict dress codes will do the trick and just to make sure, hold such get-togethers at upscale resorts or cruise ships. And if pricing fails to exclude the unsocialized, insist that all speeches have an “academic,” boring flavor, a strategy that has the twin advantage of keeping away both the riff-raff and also anti-hate organization such as the Southern Poverty Law Center.
This exclusionary tactic was brought home to me years back at a conference of a reputable conservative organization partial to upmarket hotels and costly banquets. I suggested to the group’s Executive Secretary that they could attract a larger (and younger) crowd if they offered a cheaper hotel option and a roommate service. Cold silence.
Contrast all this with a certain organization that caters to “race realists.” Years ago its meetings were held in nondescript airport hotels with reasonable rates. Alas, after several of these chains refused to host this controversial “racist” group, the annual conference was re-located to a state park in Burns, Tennessee. Now, happily, thanks to rock bottom hotel rates plus inexpensive all-you-can-eat buffets (baked ham, fried chicken), attendance soared (the most recent conference totally sold out). Its mid-America location allows groups of attendees to share driving, a major saving over flying.
Here attendees (many of whom were good-old boys and gals) could get their fill of ideological “red meat” on taboo topics, notably white identity and the dangers of Islam. Participants comfortably expressed heretical views and traded Arab bestiality jokes without fearing the PC police.
It is no wonder, then, that the great mass of ordinary Americans who despise the Left’s agenda and suffer its social engineering are not drawn to Conservative Inc. Its exclusionary elitism is hardly hidden and hoi polloi who did manage to show up would feel lost. All the high-toned conferences and policy position papers are irrelevant to those condemned as racists for not wanting their local police departments forcibly diversified.
How does Donald Trump fit into this landscape? He is a gate crasher whose popularity among down-market whites explains why Conservative Inc simultaneously loathes him. Some of this attraction is just in-your-face defiance of Conservative Inc’s feminized social etiquette, for example, wearing a bright red baseball cap, an article of clothing never seen at an AEI or Heritage gathering. And no “respectable” conservative would daily dare to parade around a stunning, statuesque trophy wife who once posed naked. You could almost smell his fear-generating testosterone, an odor rarely found in the conservative establishment but common at gun shows. Indeed, in a political culture where office-seekers compete to show compassion for the less fortunate (“I feel your pain”), Trump instead projects the image of a man with cojones. Easy to picture Trump, and only Trump, dialing up Kim Jong Un and saying, “Kim, I know you have your finger on the nuclear button, but before you press it, just ask yourself. ‘Is this your lucky day?’”
But most of all, both as a candidate and President he rejects the dishonesty (“bullshit,” to be technical) that is the ticket of admission to the respectable Right by refusing to embrace its bold-faced lies. He never apologizes and thus cannot be intimidated by the race hustlers, the social justice warriors and the neo-pagan environmentalist. He puts on a manly show that has not been seen in decades and so packs the house in fly-over country.
On immigration, for example, there was no dishonest blather about how diversity makes us strong, how America is a nation of immigrants, how hard-working Hispanics embrace strong family values and all the rest favored by anxious-to-please mainstream conservatives. Hard to think of anything less inclusive than “I will build the wall” or calling for extreme vetting to exclude Muslim terrorists. He also navigates race-related issues without gratuitously quoting Martin Luther King, calling teenage predators “at-risk youngsters” needing jobs, or blaming the legacy of slavery as an excuse for poverty. His silence speaks loudly to those sick of apologetic leaders, for example, not going into spasms of outrage over monuments to Robert E. Lee.
His fans instinctively sense that despite his great wealth and custom-made suits he would never fit into a Georgetown dinner of “reputable” conservatives who preferred the domesticated low-energy Jeb or little Mario. Moreover, unlike those writers and pundits enrolled in Conservative Inc. whose livelihoods depend on the fickle grace of a few super-wealthy benefactors, he is independent financially, a virtue that may well inspire jealousy among those who earn their bread toeing the party line. There is no plug to pull if he wanders off the reservation and this makes him “dangerous.” In short, to return to our parallel with restaurants, the Donald is the classic guest who arrives uninvited to the dinner party of pompous fools, a loudmouth who refuses the host’s Boudin Noir Aux Pommes (blood sausage and apples) and instead demands a well-done T-bone steak, fries and a diet Coke, tells off-color jokes about black transvestites and flaunts decorum. Naturally all the other guests are horrified but the long-suffering kitchen help love it and privately cheer him on.