In my view, it would be a much better question to ask what any of these people have in common with “anarchists” like Alexander Reid Ross who work for the National Contagion Research Institute:
“Over the past year, as the far right trafficked in wild anti-masker and pro-Donald Trump fantasies that led to the Jan. 6 putsch on the Capitol, some prominent members of the “Dirtbag Left” and radical left have been promoting figureheads in the Boogaloo movement, circulating “deep state” conspiracies, and bantering about “great replacement” talking points—ones that can sometimes sound an awful lot like the fever dreams of the alt-right. …
It’s a complex ecosystem, when you map the strange areas of crossover between the political fringes. In some cases, leftists pay tribute to aspects of right-wing conspiracy theories ostensibly to coax some from the right into left-wing populism. On the other side, some leftists genuinely seek to transcend the boundary between left and right entirely to create a populist moment that challenges what they see as the elites.
Playing footsie with the right is not a common thing on the neo-socialist left, but there’s a subset of this latter group, a small but influential band, who can veer into legitimizing the talking points of the extremist right. …”
There is no such thing as the “far right.”
It is a term used exclusively by “journalists” and “extremism researchers” to describe a large swath of the American population which rejects their cultural and political views. The term “white supremacy” is now thrown around in the same way by libs to describe all White Americans who reject cosmopolitanism, modernism and political correctness. In reality, they are the real fringe extremists. They are writing about other Americans from an extreme left-libertarian anarchist perspective.
In my self understanding, I am a nationalist, a populist and a moderate. I’m an Independent voter, not a Republican. I’m a social conservative and economic populist. Every test that I have ever taken shows that my views are in the Center of the electorate. My voting record reflects the fact that I am a White moderate who isn’t aligned with either party. The actual “far right” are people like Charles Koch.
The two party system is polarized in such a way that White conservatives are aligned with the Republican Party and White libs are aligned with the Democratic Party. White moderates are dealigned and feel stuck in between the two parties which are screwing them over with neoliberalism.
The “far right” that is described by people like Alexander Reid Ross is actually White Indies who are adjacent to the Republicans who are swing voters in the middle of the electorate. They are “far right” in the sense of being far more moderate than most Republicans. They are more likely to be working class voters. ALL working class voters of all races are more ethnocentric including White voters. White libs who are left-libertarian modernists are weird people who have a negative sense of racial identity.
MAGA voters are defined by their belief that the economic system is rigged against them. 94% of them believe in unfairly favors powerful interests.
70% of Republicans are populists on identity questions.
50% of Republicans are populists on economic questions.
10% of Republicans are pure True Cons or Free Marketeer voters.
As recently as 2016, the political landscape was different because it wasn’t until Obama’s second term that the MAGA voters broke away from the Democrats and rallied behind Trump and crashed the GOP.
Most of the “far right” white supremacists voted for Obama against Mitt Romney in the 2012 election. They turned on him when he pushed for comprehensive immigration reform and lost control of the border:
The “far right” are disaffected voters in the middle of the electorate who rallied behind Trump in the 2016 election. They responded to his message about how ordinary people were getting screwed by the system and how the Democrats supported open borders. Trump attacked Wall Street when running for president in 2016 and also said he was spending his own money in order to be free of the donor class. While it is true that Trump never really meant any of this which is why he lost support from Indies, Trump voters sincerely hold these views and have been nursing the same grievances since the late 1980s.
Enough about us though.
The truth is that there is no such thing as “leftwing populism” and “rightwing populism” and “Left” and “Right” are illusions which mask shifting coalitions of voters. As recently as 2012, the “far right” MAGA voters were weakly attached Democrats stuck in the Center of the electorate. These disaffected people were never at home in the Republican Party at any point in the previous thirty years. Even today, virtually all of them would leave the Republican Party to join a Trump third party.
If you travel back far enough in American history, you will find that “leftwing populists” and “rightwing populists” share a common ancestry. Both can be traced back to Thomas Jefferson and Andrew Jackson and especially to William Jennings Bryan and the People’s Party. Would you describe William Jennings Bryan and Tom Watson as “leftwing populists” or “rightwing populists” or both?
Rep. John Rankin of Mississippi was arguably the most racist congressman of the 20th century. And yet, Rankin was the father of the TVA, rural electrification and sponsored the GI Bill.
How about George Wallace?
Is George Wallace a “leftwing populist” or a “rightwing populist”? In Alabama, Wallace was the education governor who built community colleges around the state. Wallace also never became a Republican.
The South was the base of Thomas Jefferson and Andrew Jackson’s coalition, William Jennings Bryan’s coalition in 1896, 1900 and 1908, Woodrow Wilson’s coalition in 1912 and 1916 and FDR’s New Deal coalition in 1932, 1936, 1940 and 1944. Southerners continued to vote for the Democrats through Jimmy Carter. In fact, most Southerners were Democrats until the Reagan presidency in the 1980s.
Is there a massive, unbridgeable ideological divide between “rightwing populism” and “leftwing populism” or this a recent development? The answer is clearly … no. Both groups still agree on economics, foreign policy, free speech and a host of other issues. For most of the 20th century, “rightwing populists” and “leftwing populists” were Bryan, Wilson and FDR Democrats. Even in the 21st century, “rightwing populists” were dealigned Independent voters who clearly didn’t like True Conservatism which they kept at arm’s length and who only began to conquer the Republican Party like four or five years ago.
Why then are “rightwing populists” in one party and “leftwing populists” in the other party? It is because libs alienated the former by pushing their extreme modernist and cosmopolitan values and extreme political correctness on everyone and drove them all out of the Democratic Party. They made the Democratic Party culturally toxic to White working class voters in rural states. Everyone knows it is true and the drift among rural Hispanics who are also alienated by this garbage confirms it. Their only political talent is polarizing and alienating people and narrowing the appeal of the progressive movement. They have made the Democratic Party so unpopular and toxic that raising the minimum wage is too high of a hurdle for them and passing $1,400 checks requires budget reconciliation!
There is a path out of this endless gridlock though which is increasingly coming into view. We can finish conquering the Republican Party and pushing out the True Cons or Free Marketeers and jettison their unpopular economic agenda. Then we would have all the disaffected populists in one party and all the smug, satisfied neoliberals in the other party again. Disaffected moderates who are Independent voters would be aligned again and we would essentially have a second Populist vs. Progressive era.
Karl Rove explains how this was done in the video below. It is why Alexander Reid Ross wrote this hit piece too. This is how we ended the Gilded Age and created the New Deal coalition. It is vital to spook people and have them extremely afraid of each other even though 99% of one group and 95% of the other group believes the same thing. This is why communication is so dangerous to liberals because if all the disaffected people started talking about the liberals and how they operate a consensus would be reached. It is also why the reemergence of populism is described as “fascism” by liberals.
Note: There are people who flirt with and become fascists. I’ve always thought of them as moderates in an extreme state of disillusionment and agitation. They are radical moderates.