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The Humiliation of Matt Christiansen
MisterSwig posted a topic in Intellectuals and the MediaSince the 2016 election I've been watching the alt-Right on YouTube. I believe Matt Christiansen is more libertarian/conservative than far Right statist, so he fell off my radar in the last year or so. But he recently made waves for saying the Ukraine whistleblower's name on his moderately successful show, Beauty and the Beta, and being censored by YouTube. The hosts of Revenge of the Cis, a far Right talk show, made fun of Christiansen for complaining about censorship when he didn't defend certain alt-Right figures when YouTube started censoring their speech years ago. The hosts, Royce Lopez and Mersh, are a couple of comedians who also made insulting jokes at Christiansen's expense. Still, Christiansen asked to go on their show and talk about it. If you're interested in the details, you can watch the exchange here. https://youtu.be/mZTSDGGJZe4 Basically, the alt-Right trolls, one of whom (Mersh) refers to himself as a "light fascist," spent most of the interview shouting over and making fun of Christiansen. Christiansen looked like the civil, rational one simply by taking the conversation seriously. And it might seem like he won the argument. But if you take a step back, you might see how he utterly humiliated himself and ultimately betrayed his own principle. First, Christiansen started off by trying to appease Lopez and Mersh, asking which boxes he needs to check in order to prove that he meets their standard for being sufficiently pro-free speech. Then, after their relentless verbal abuse, he accuses them of having no standard or principle. He claims to be the serious one with principles and looks like the adult in the room. But near the end of the interview, Mersh asks if Christiansen would invite Nick Fuentes, a controversial alt-Right conservative figure, on his show. Christiansen hesitates at first, saying that that's not how he runs his show. He's not against inviting Fuentes, but he needs to discuss it with his co-host first, he doesn't like to announce invites until the guest is already booked, etc. Then Mersh says that Fuentes has an open invite to appear on Revenge of the Cis. So now this is clearly a box that he expects Christiansen to check in order to prove his loyalty to the cause. Christiansen then quickly caves and agrees to offer Fuentes an open invitation, perhaps not realizing that he just proved his own spineless hypocrisy. He just violated his own rule in order to appease a couple of alt-Right trolls who clearly have zero respect for him. The trolls rely on people tolerating them. They see people whining about free speech, and they say, "Well, you're not really for free speech unless you defend our speech and let us talk on your platform!" And since people like Christiansen don't actually understand rights, they adopt the troll's position, which is based on destroying the freedom of association. The trolls don't actually care about free speech. They want to control people and their platforms.
I have put a lot of effort into this blog over the last few years: Objectivism for Intellectuals | Exploring the depths of Ayn Rand's revolutionary philosophy. I always strive toward intellectual rigor and creating an understanding of principles' contexts in the reader. Sometimes this means that the writing doesn't flow as smoothly as it might if I were to write in a more casual style. But I hope that intelligent and thoughtful people will appreciate the rigor and perhaps gain some insight from it.