From the Versailles Dining Room of The Hoover Institution, episode CCXVII. Niall Ferguson on Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as demonstrative of his theory of ’emocracy’ . Old Socialist comments

Mr Ferguson has the annoying habit of inventing neologisms, like the utterly forgotten  ‘Chimerica’ and now ’emocracy’ as serviceable description of reality, that is more about reinforcing ideology,than the purported ‘reality’ he attempts to describe. This ’emocracy’ is the invention that serves the ideological ends of attacking Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and some rhetorical hangers-on. What passes for cleverness, in the mind of Posh Boy Mr. Ferguson, looks comically maladroit to this reader, or more pointedly just dull-witted.

There was a time when appeals to emotion over facts were regarded as the preserve of the populist right. But truthiness — the quality of being ideologically convenient, though not actually true — is now bipartisan. Last week on the CBS show 60 Minutes, host Anderson Cooper confronted the 29-year-old congresswoman and social media sensation Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez with some of her many factual errors. Her reply was that of a true emocrat: “I think,” she replied, “there’s a lot of people more concerned about being precisely, factually and semantically correct than about being morally right.”

Mr. Ferguson as is usual, for a Neo-Conservative, obsessed with degeneration and decay. Has he found the perfect Apostate in Ocasio-Cortez ? Except that the appeal to ‘morality’ in no way fits his dubious frame of ’emocracy’ defined as the rule of politically inspired/exploited emotions! Call the propaganda offensive on Rep.Ocasio-Cortez failed in the terms, the parameters Ferguson sets for himself.

A good illustration of what Ocasio-Cortez means by morally right was her claim, in an interview on Monday, that “the world is going to end in 12 years if we don’t address climate change”. Another was her assertion that “a vast majority of the country doesn’t make a living wage”.

She may be young, female, Hispanic, good-looking and left wing — in every way the anti-Trump — but Alexandria Occasionally-Correct shares with the president a genius for the crucial tool of emocratic politics: social media, where moral truthiness always travels faster than the boring old dry-as-dust vérité.

Mr. Ferguson moves on to more pertinent territory, and muddies the waters to prove his dubious theorizing about ’emocracy’ with his comments on the MAGA Boys and a Gillette commercial, to round out his rant on Leftist Rep. Ocasio-Cortez.

Here is Mr. Ferguson sounding the notes once reserved for that hysterical Prophet of Doom Alan Bloom:

Emocracy manifests itself in many places: on campuses, for example, where trigger warnings and safe spaces exist to protect students’ feelings, and in the #MeToo movement, where “I believe her” often trumps due process. But it is the media, both social and traditional, that have made emocracy ubiquitous.

Call this what it is the hysterical gasps of the Patriarchy and its Politics, facing the fact that their power to bully,shame, and defame its opposition is a project that in the wake of the 2008 Depression, and its most proximate cause, a collapsed Free Market Swindle, has produced a Left-Wing Populism: a revival of the spirit of The New Deal, that has mass political appeal.  Call Mr. Ferguson’s polemic by its name, an incitement to moral panic!

Old Socialist





About stephenkmacksd

Rootless cosmopolitan,down at heels intellectual;would be writer. 'Polemic is a discourse of conflict, whose effect depends on a delicate balance between the requirements of truth and the enticements of anger, the duty to argue and the zest to inflame. Its rhetoric allows, even enforces, a certain figurative licence. Like epitaphs in Johnson’s adage, it is not under oath.'
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