A very interesting post, characteristically calm and thoughtful; and Silver’s track record in understanding American politics is certainly better than most people’s (and surely better than mine). An excerpt, though you should read the whole thing:

“A New York Times headline, for instance, expressed surprise that “many on the left” were sympathetic to Stefanik. But this isn’t properly described as a battle between left and right. Rather, it’s a three-way tug-of-war between the left, the right, and liberals…. Proponents of SJL usually dislike variations on the term “woke”, but the problem is that they dislike almost every other term as well. And we need some term for this ideology, because it encompasses quite a few distinctive features that differentiate it both from liberalism and from traditional, socialist-inflected leftism. In particular, SJL is much less concerned with the material condition of the working class, or with class in general. Instead, it is concerned with identity — especially identity categories involving race, gender and sexuality, but sometimes also many others as part of a sort of intersectional kaleidoscope. The focus on identity isn’t the only distinctive feature of SJL, but it is at the core of it. SJLs and liberals have some interests in common. Both are “culturally liberal” on questions like abortion and gay marriage. And both disdain Donald Trump and the modern, MAGA-fied version of the Republican Party. But I’d suggest we’ve reached a point where they disagree in at least as many ways as they agree. Here are a few dimensions of conflict:”

“SJL’s focus on group identity contrasts sharply with liberalism’s individualism. SJL, like other critical theories that emerged from the Marxist tradition, tends to be totalizing. The SJL intolerance for speech that could be harmful, hateful or which could spread “misinformation” has gained traction, however. It is the predominant view among college students and it is becoming more popular in certain corners of the media and even among many mainstream Democrats. The old left-right coalitions have long been under strain as America has moved away from materialist politics to the politics of cultural grievance. The clearest manifestation of this has been intense polarization based on educational attainment (the more years of schooling, the more likely you are to vote Democrat). If, however, higher educational institutions and the ideas associated with them continue to become more and more unpopular, I’m not sure what happens next. The post Nate Silver on "Why Liberalism and Leftism Are Increasingly at Odds" appeared first on Reason.com.”

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