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All-right and the policy of the overtramp

Kill All Normies: Online Culture Wars from 4Chan and Tumblr to Trump and the Alt-right
Forfatter: Angela Nagle
Forlag: Zero Books (Storbritannia)
Angela Nagle moans about everything right and explains why the movement has become a success story.


The US presidential election in 2016 was a culmination of old institutional and political mistakes. The results are unheard of, but not unpredictable. In an attempt to understand why the voices ended up where they did and what has made Trumpism possible, Angela Nagle's new book Kill All Normies a bold move in the hinterland of online culture and tracking trends that helped Trump and his equal to power.


Nagle claims that what we are witnessing today is not an upswing for the traditional American right-wing side. The alternative right, better known as the alt-right, is something else entirely. It has inherited many values ​​from the traditional right, but has gotten rid of the moral constraints of Christianity and adopted Friedrich Nietzsche's view of "morality as anti-nature."

The alt-right may have more in common with the left-wing freedom of the 1960 years than with the traditionalist right.

The author goes further, saying that the alt-right may have more in common with the 1960 years of freedom on the left than with the traditionalist right. While this claim calls for a more in-depth discussion, Nagle seems convincing when she argues that moral boundaries, which since the 1960 years have been considered a leftist aesthetic and "a virtue in Western social liberalism", are now successfully annexed by the alt-right .

The countercultural praise of moral transgressions is an apolitical tool that is effectively exploited by today's alt-right leaders, who seek to appeal to the masses. In his "An Establishment Conservative's Guide to the Alt-Right" apology, the notorious alt-right figure Milo Yiannopoulos writes that "young rebels" in the alt-right are drawn to the movement "for the same reasons that drew young baby boomers to the new left. in the 1960s: because it promises fun, border crossing ». Saying what should not be said is "funny", states Yiannopoulos, before drawing a parallel between "young people in their 60s [who] shocked their parents with promiscuity, long hair and rock'n'roll", and "everything -right young mem brigades »who« shock older generations with scandalous caricatures, from Jewish -Shlomo Shekelburg 'to -Remove Kebab', an in-joke from the internet about the Bosnian genocide ».

In 2016, The Nation had an interview with Yiannopoulos calling him "the most hated man on the internet". Editor Don David Guttenplan rightly noted that it may be too late to deny Yiannopoulos and others like him a place in the online discourse, no matter how dubious or false their views are. It would be more productive to try to understand the motives of the alt-right and what has contributed to the movement's progress, given that denying them such space could serve as confirmation of just what they claim.


While the alt-right consists of numerous factions and subgroups, what unites them seems a clear antiestablishment ethos, exemplified by the movement's positioning as a new, norm-breaking counterculture that is rebellious, sanctimonious and completely opposed to anything political correct. Both critics and sympathizers of the growing movement have noted the opposition to the politically correct that seems to have united the various subgroups of the alt-right. Alt-right accuses the progressive left-wing of being "authoritarian," condemning its attempts to strengthen multicultural norms and exclude radical opponents from the public sphere, and juxtapose the left-wing "language police" and "censorship" with what was found in the Christian right in 1990s. Conversely, the incumbent US president represents "an existential threat to political correctness," Yiannopoulos said in The Nation interview, adding that Trump would "tolerate virtually anything because of it."

Kill All Normies trying to understand everything right through a prism of the left's failures.

In the article "Charlottesville Paradox: The -Liberalizing 'All-Right, -Authoritarian' Left and Politics of Dialogue, 'Joe Phillips and Joseph Yi further elaborate the claims, pointing out what unites all-rights subgroups in addition to the tabloid style of in sharp contrast to the politically correct, their dislike for the progressive left's rhetoric about white privilege. The authors say that the feeling of being marginalized is shared by many subgroups of the alt-right, and that one of the things that unites them is the narrative that non-privileged whites are "victims of unfair government policy", which also includes positive discrimination and the law on asylum rights for paperless migrants.

Mistakes made by left side

Angela Nagle

While Nagle's assertion of the all-rights annexation of the morally groundbreaking is compelling, there is something else that makes the book stand out compared to what is otherwise written on the subject: the attempt to understand everything right through a prism of the left's failures. The book regrets the emergence of the movement and claims that the new right-wing consciousness may be due to the left side having abandoned social and economic politics and declining to identity politics.

Painful reflections on the left side's mistakes, which may have cleared the ground for everything right, are necessary – if they do not come too late. The leftist writer's willingness to point out the numerous mistakes made by her own, and the spiteful approach to what she calls the performative Tumblr-awakened left, is commendable. However, nail coverage of the other side is often marred by incorrect assumptions and equivalents. There is a certain scarcity in some of the Tumblr Left's claims, especially in her criticism of being warned that it may appear or say something that may seem hurtful or unpleasant (trigger warnings) and that opponents should be denied access to pulpits (no-platforming). This undermines some of the seriousness of what is otherwise a well-documented work.

After reading the book, there are some things we wonder: Is there any solution to the trick we are stuck in today? What choices does Europe have when populist parties continue to make it big in elections, forcing the continent further to the right?

The book gives no answers. Nevertheless, it poses serious questions and serves as a good foundation book on modern political divides and the political phenomenon that is all-right. 

Sevara Pan
Sevara Pan
Sevara Pan is a writer, based in Berlin.

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