You Are Still Crying Wolf

Friday, November 18th, 2016

You are still crying wolf, Scott Alexander laments:

Trump made gains among blacks. He made gains among Latinos. He made gains among Asians. The only major racial group where he didn’t get a gain of greater than 5% was white people. I want to repeat that: the group where Trump’s message resonated least over what we would predict from a generic Republican was the white population.

Nor was there some surge in white turnout. I don’t think we have official numbers yet, but by eyeballing what data we have it looks very much like whites turned out in equal or lesser numbers this year than in 2012, 2008, and so on.

[EDIT: though see here for an alternate perspective]

The media responded to all of this freely available data with articles like White Flight From Reality: Inside The Racist Panic That Fueled Donald Trump’s Victory and Make No Mistake: Donald Trump’s Win Represents A Racist “Whitelash”.

I stick to my thesis from October 2015. There is no evidence that Donald Trump is more racist than any past Republican candidate (or any other 70 year old white guy, for that matter). All this stuff about how he’s “the candidate of the KKK” and “the vanguard of a new white supremacist movement” is made up. It’s a catastrophic distraction from the dozens of other undeniable problems with Trump that could have convinced voters to abandon him. That it came to dominate the election cycle should be considered a horrifying indictment of our political discourse, in the same way that it would be a horrifying indictment of our political discourse if the entire Republican campaign had been based around the theory that Hillary Clinton was a secret Satanist. Yes, calling Romney a racist was crying wolf. But you are still crying wolf.

Read the whole thing.


  1. Slovenian Guest says:

    It’s more like the wolf crying honky!

    And since when are mere facts supposed to ruin a perfectly good witch hunt? Racist only means bad whitey at this point, and every honky who voted for Trump is a bad honky, by definition, it’s time to come down from our etymological high horse and face this reality.

  2. Slovenian Guest says:

    Scott Adams claims this as THE definitive article to reprogram anti-trumpers:

    “It would take me too long to explain why this article about Trump, by Scott Alexander, is so important to you and to the country. Stop whatever you are doing and give it ten minutes.

    Seriously. Stop what you are doing. Give this ten minutes. It’s more important that almost anything you were going to do today.

    Then save the link for later sharing. Show it to all of your friends who think Trump is a racist monster. This ends it.

    The only people who will think Trump is a racist going forward are people who haven’t read this article. If you find someone like that, send them the link. This piece is a brilliant service to the country. Breathtaking.”

  3. Space Nookie says:

    Data is from exit polls, which are done by the same people who consistently put HRC at +4-6 and thought she had a 70%+ chance of winning, i.e. not a solid foundation for argument.

  4. Slovenian Guest says:

    One Steve Johnson, a commenter on Jim’s blog, has a more critical view on said article:

    Scott Alexander is deeply emotionally committed to the left and wants the left to succeed. If you read the full post, he later gives 99% and 95% estimates that the population of NAMs and Muslims in the United States increases through a Trump term. Those numbers are the key to understanding the post.

    What Scott fears is that Trump’s election is the end of the reign of terror where if you say something progressives consider blasphemy you get persecuted. As of right now, the most likely outcome is that progs keep screaming about racism and Hitler and people learn to fully ignore them. Scott wants people to look at Trump, see that he makes an effort to pander to prog pets and give him an all clear on racism. This preserves the weapon for future use when someone doesn’t make the effort to pander. His interest is in preserving the weapon – until demographics makes a Trump repeat impossible (that’s where his probablistic estimates come in). He even describes this strategy in a post called “Be Nice Until You Can Coordinate Meanness”.

    Scott is giving tactical advice to the left. Of course, the left is too emotional and crazy to understand that (“only a racist would say that Trump isn’t a racist!”) and (too much of) the right is too desperate for approval (“even the acclaimed blogger Scott Alexander says Trump isn’t really a racist”) so no one will see the actual message.

    Scott dearly wishes the left could constrain its maniacs so that you can have sane, normal progressivism where trannies are never misgendered (correctly gendered), socialism is considered a deeply attractive economic system that maybe someday we’ll be ready for, where racial behavioral differences don’t necessitate different rules for social harmony to exist, where diversity + proximity != war, where the left wasn’t just a bunch of people posturing to tear down social structures for the short term status boost gained for tearing them down, etc. In short, he’s nuts – in a very conventional way.

    The evil part is that he understands and agrees with enough of the reactionary critique to know that his wishes for the left are impossible – and he remains a leftist anyway.

  5. Slovenian Guest says:

    The exact comment which Jim himself later paraphrased as such:

    I would unkindly interpret his (Alexanders) essay has “Please do not set fire to the Reichstag while Trump has the army and the police, and stop being mean to the legacy Americans until we have imported enough brown allies to kill them all.”

    What Scott fears is exactly what I hope for with every fiber of my being: That the left screaming racistsexisthomophobe at everyone all the time at maximum volume will eventually lead to a preference cascade where large numbers of manly men go around wearing t shirts saying “I am a proud racist misogynist etc”

    If Scott actually wanted peace rather than democidal war, he would be willing to talk to the right, rather than patronizingly lecture them with formulaic repetitious hostile patronizing Stalinist boilerplate, and willing to listen to their reply, their reply invariably being it that we have heard that crap a thousand times before, and it is obviously untrue from scientific studies and everyone’s lived experience.

    Scott’s essay is not an olive branch. It is advice to the left as to how to get in the best position for their coming war upon legacy Americans.

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