Why the Far Right Opposes Barrett
While the mainstream media has described Judge Barrett as a “conservative darling” with a “perfect combination” of attributes, I’ve noticed that the further right is much more suspect.
In the Breitbart comments sections, a kind of barometer of far right opinion, Judge Barrett is widely, if not uniformly, derided as a “swamp choice.” Another far right news site, if that’s the right description, notes that “Judge Amy Coney Barrett Recently Approved Democrat COVID-19 Lockdown Policies” and accuses her of “roll[ing] over to the far left.” One commentator, recalling 19th century conspiracy theory, questioned her bonafides, noting that “the Catholic church is as liberal as you can get.”
Some of this may be on the far right’s version of the merits; I suppose there are judges even more conservative that Barrett, or if there are not, at least such judges can be imagined, the anti-Hercules archetype.
I think it is more reflective of the need, on the far right, for the fight to never be over, and for victory to never be complete. Gaining a 6–3 advantage in the Supreme Court might seem very close to achieving a final defeat over the jurisprudence of the despised Warren court and the idea that it has foisted a far-left agenda on the citizenry of this country in the ongoing effort to destroy traditional culture and the American way of life .
But no, nothing is ever enough. Even in power, even when winning, they must remain in victimhood, for forces arrayed against them are so strong and so insidious that they cannot be underestimated. That’s why the struggle must continue; nothing short of some imagined total and final eradication of the enemy will suffice.
This tendency toward a never-ending frustration, even in victory, was something that Richard Hofstadter astutely observed about the far right, back in the 1960s. “Nothing but complete victory will do” he wrote. “[E]ven partial success gives him with the same sense of powerlessness with which he began, and this in turn only strengthens his awareness of the vast and terrifying enemy he opposes.”
I wrote more about the paranoid style, in our times, here.