Tyrone on polarization, polarization is good polarization is gone

For a few years now, a number of you have been asking me where Tyrone, my evil twin brother, has gone.  The truth is a sad one: I have had to put him away, because in these especially fractious times his particular brand of malfeasance is less funny than before.  His wisecracks cut too close to the bone, and so many matters on MR have become more somber — no more dating advice either!

Nonetheless, is there a stable equilibrium to be had?  If Tyrone receives little or no surplus, he becomes all the more…unruly.  And so, risking punishment, he snuck out this message to Alex T., and I agreed to print it, for fear that further transmissions would occur (I do respect the Laffer Curve, and at an optimal punishment level I still can get away with some editing of his words).  Here is the ridiculous nonsense that Tyrone reports this time around, and you can see he is gaming the message to encourage his own liberation:


Tyler and his media friends keep on reporting that political polarization has gone up.  But that’s wrong: it has radically fallen.  Just look at economic issues.  As of 2011, many Republicans were for some ostensible Tea Party version of economic liberty, or at least they pretended to be.  Now both parties are very bad on economic issues.  For instance, you’ll find protectionist ideas all over the political spectrum.

The wonderful thing about polarization was this: it forced people who didn’t really believe in economic liberty to act as if they did.  The resulting gridlock was better than letting people’s real instincts come out.

Trump of course used to be a Democrat, and our president himself draws bad ideas from both sides of the aisle.  Which party again was campaigning against NAFTA?  What is they say?: Look into trade as an issue. and you see a man’s soul.

What about abortion, that (supposedly) most polarizing of issues?  As Matt Yglesias noted:

About a third of Republicans are pro-choice and about a third of Democrats are pro-life.

Yes that is a real difference, but it hardly sounds like two worldviews, standing irrevocably cleaved and apart.  And a lot of those positions are in actuality fairly nuanced in their details.

According to Larry M. Bartels, about a quarter of the Democrats on cultural issues stand closer to the Republican party than to the average position of their own party.  And talking through the poll data on Christian black women — often Democrats but on average not exactly “progressives” — would require a lengthy missive of its own.

Nor do I see either party speaking up for free speech on campus, except in the most opportunistic terms.  Republicans are pushing bills to crack down on left-wing protests against conservative talks, while the left is trying to limit those same conservative talks.  Distinction without a difference, your Tyrone says, and he should know.  I yearn for the “good ol’ days” when the New Left was for free speech and the conservatives were largely more skeptical.  At least someone was for it, and in an oppositional kind of way.

Contrary to standard reports, the urban-rural divide has not really been growing.

Is the view that Asian-Americans have the wrong personality a Steve Bannon idea, or is it a Harvard idea?

Trump wants to change various governmental rules and norms to cement his own power, such as dumping the filibuster and perhaps reinterpreting the emoluments clause and expanding executive authority of trade and immigration.  Democrats talk of dumping the electoral college or, right now, bringing back FDR’s “court-packing” plan.

It is widely granted that traditional political parties are blowing up (NYT).  Plenty of people wanted Trump and Sanders to run together as a ticket.  And in just about every European country, immigration and terrorism poll as the major issues, neither of those being the traditional territory for previous polarization.

The thing is, when people really believe in something, they end up polarized.  Of course they don’t agree on everything, and so polarization ensues along the dimensions of difference.  Less polarization is a symptom of believing in less more generally, and don’t confuse the resulting obnoxious fractiousness with greater polarization.  Instead, it is a sign that ideas are no longer ruling the day.  And indeed, religious participation is down in America and the secularization thesis is finally beginning to bite.  Polarization, however unpleasant it may have felt at the time, meant order.

Tyler again:

What can I say people? Tyrone now opposed to obnoxious fractiousness?  In spite of his periodically reasonable tone this time around, don’t believe it for a moment — he hasn’t changed.  Nor is polarization down.  Polarization between Tyler and Tyrone clearly has gone up as of late, thus his enforced silence.  Tyler believes in free speech, and he knows that freedom from harm for others requires the silence of Tyrone.  And so is freedom realized, and to thunderous applause.

Who knows when you will hear from Tyrone again?  Maybe I’ll let him do a restaurant review instead.


I submit that people's "real instincts" aren't "coming out" any more now than before; in fact, maybe less. Many of us who were lukewarm or even skeptical about Mr. Trump still are, but feel compelled to rally to his defense because everyone visibly promoting alternatives is really evil (Antifa terrorists or communists like Ms. Acesio-Cortez). The more those people threaten to win, the more it's Trump at any cost for me.

This is how I feel too. I've never voted for a Republican before (mostly Dem, with a little Green back in the day and Libertarian in 2016). I've thought of Trump as a low class douche since the 80s. But, seeing what the media is doing to him and how they're lionizing communists as the Dems' best hope moving forward is pushing me to vote R for the first time in my life.

'and how they're lionizing communists'

Well, at least they aren't playing up the virtues a former KGB agent who just happened to seize the Crimea. That job is left up to the president of the United States, apparently.

At 70, I find it odd that 30% of Republicans in the 60s are now commies.

I grew up in Indiana in the 60s, and someone like Pence was fringe, nutcase. Not quite dangerous enough to be targeted by WFBjr.

Maybe Marion was more sane because it was the last in Indiana to lynch, and it's main photo is used in almost all articles on lynchings, so that weighed on that conservative religious town.

Seventy: that explains it.

70, hmmm, probably a higher IQ than most would have predicted for Master Mulp

Pence's current positions would be considered liberal Democrat in the 1960's

That KGB agent has invaded fewer countries, killed fewer people, and dropped fewer bombs than the last 2 presidents. Ironically, he is the best president of Russia has had since probably Alexander II. Well, maybe not since he was devoted to war in the Crimea.

I do agree with clockwork orange. Russia hacked the DNC emails and hacked the election, the US orchestrated 9/11 for the benefit of the bankers and intelligence services, and President Obama was born in Kenya.

JD, Do you realize you might be manipulated in supporting Trump because of your antipathy to the most extreme elements who might in fact include Trump supporters. So, when Nazi and white nationalists have counter protesters, you would support Trump, even though one of their members drives his car into the crowd and kills a protester.

If you are going to measure your views based on how the most extreme element reacts then you are giving up your beliefs to someone else who can manipulate you. You have the right instincts to think for yourself, independent of what others do.

Just remember: Russia organized protests, put out fake black lives matter websites. Think about how you might be manipulated by Russia, including you, Arnold, by this line of thinking.

Try floating the line in Oakland that BLM is a Russian ploy and see how far it gets you.

"So, when Nazi and white nationalists have counter protesters, you would support Trump, even though one of their members drives his car into the crowd and kills a protester."

Some Nazis showed up but the protest was by normal folks protesting the idiotic removal of statues. Why bother asking questions about something you don't care to have the facts on?

What the removal of the statues really all that "idiotic". Surely you can understand why some people might be offended by those statues. you can make a decent argument that they shouldn't be taken down, but it's not prima facei absurd, or crazy, or stupid, to support doing so.

OK, I'll give you that point. But by the same token it's not fair to label all, or even most of the protesters Nazis. The largest portion were not.

Well, personally I would not want to associate with Nazis at all, myself. There's ways to protest other than attending a torch-lit rally attended by Nazis. And if I was organizing such an event, I would try to make damn sure that Nazis knew they were not welcome to attend.

The Nazis showed up to the protest. You going down the road of limiting people's right to protest now? It's not like it was a sunday brunch going on. Middle of town square basically - you don't get to choose who's there.

You don't get to choose whose there, but if Nazis show up to your rally, you are allowed to tell them to fuck off, and make it perfectly clear to anyone else present that they were not invited and aren't welcome.

You have no right to tell anyone to F off in the middle of a public street. Why would they listen anyways? Neither protest reflects on the other.

You have no right to tell anyone to F off in the middle of a public street.

Actually you do. That's what the First Amendment is for.

If it makes you feel better.

Er. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fighting_words

Surely you can understand why some people might be offended by those statues.

They're not offended by the statues. The statues have been their for decades. They're just pissing on the lamp post.

Art Deco, expert on the thoughts and motivations of all people of color.

I am not on any side here.

That said, it was my impression that the protest groups who are tearing down statues south of the mason Dixon line are overwhelmingly young white college kids/white kids in their 20s.

African Americans make up an almost zero % of these agitprop groups, no?

Or am I mistaken

Who knew that McCain, Flake, and Corker were evil?


Re: polarization. Both Tyler and Tyrone are on the side that doesn't know what bathroom to use.

I stopped reading when Tyrone quoted Yglesias.

So, in a house or place of business (think something like a small auto repair place), do you actually have two different bathrooms for men and women? Where I am sitting right now has a bathroom that can be used by women or men - no one cares (it is not exactly a public toilet, though the public is often allowed to use it).

People who care about this seem quite strange to me, actually - on either extreme of this utterly irrelevant debate.

Those are bathrooms that accomodate a single person at a time, correct? There are quite a few of those and nobody cares.

So do the stalls in public bathrooms. There are no urinals in the ladies room. And trans-men don't have penises. Everyone is going to do their business in a stall.

I was replying to Prior's small business comment, but trans guys have been using stalls for years, and if caught misbehaving could be kicked out. Enshrining the right now means guys with penises can go in as long as they identify as women. This opens the door to abuse. I don't want my 12 yrs old daughter in the bathroom with a guy who 'identifies' as a woman so he can get into a women's bathroom. There are a lot more pervs out there than trans who've gone through the operation.

***Antifa terrorists or communists like Ms. Acesio-Cortez***????
Anti fascists are now terrorists? And a Democratic Socialist gets painted in haunting reminiscence of Joe McCarthy as a Communist.
Pitiful. Definitely on the side of fascism. What a sorry state we have come to.

Yeah, the first comment exemplifies the madness that got us here, and the madness that could take us further.

All you folks who claimed you did not vote for Trump, and then claimed that checks and balances would hold, and now claim that when checks and balances don't hold everything is still fine..

Pray reconsider.

Obligatory Tweet example follows:


Really just a tangent but the "madness that could take us further" made me think of the warning Israel received from some of it's neighbors regarding Turkey's effort to influence in East Jeruselem. (https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/06/palestine-saudi-arabia-warn-israel-turkey-180628195454983.html)

The geopolitical setting is getting very interesting.

"Anti fascists are now terrorists? " Absolutely. The group shows up to protest masked in order to commit violence. Kinda the definition of terrorism.

yes, the people calling themselves "antifa" have been acting as terrorists.

Where have you been?

Here is a little trivia. In a poll this month, Republican approval for Kim Jong-un (19%) edged out Republican approval for Nancy Pelosi (17%). This is the same month in which Kim Jong-un sentenced a general to a firing squad - because he gave his soldiers extra rations of food.

I think this represents kind of a square peg for the round hole Tyrone has described.

LOL, you are always so quick to cherry pick data. It's noteworthy that you left out the following tid bits from the poll:

10% of Democrats view the Trump administration favorably
12 percent of voters overall had a favorable view of Kim

Hmm. It seems like math that a ~20% Republican approval produces a ~10% overall approval, by itself. Maybe you pick one or two percent from independents and wayward Dems.

And geez, you actually used Democratic approval of Trump to justify Republican approval of Kim Jong-un?

What segment of voters do you even represent at this point?

"It seems like math that a ~20% Republican approval produces a ~10% overall approval, by itself."

Only if you are bad at math or ignorant of polls. Republicans are usually a third of such polls.

"And geez, you actually used Democratic approval of Trump to justify Republican approval of Kim Jong-un?"

Yes, I'm pointing out that the average approval rating of a foreign dictator is about the same as Democratic approval of the President.

You Sir, represent. For the problem Steve Kerr links us to.


We will have to simply wait until November to see who is in the right next year. For the next 4 months we know who it is : Not you.

Isn't it odd that the very people who were consistently wrong the last 2 years, are so sure they are right now?

I mean for a very miniature tragic-comedy recall how many of you wanted to give Trump Nobel Peace Prize a few weeks ago. Now we learn that the North Koreans have been building more nuclear bombs exactly as before. Perhaps that is not surprising and not exactly Trump's fault, but the sheer desperation many of you showed to find some kind of win for Trump in that moment ...

(In retrospect, the North Koreans correctly read Trump as a guy who wanted to sign something he could wave in the air. And the critics who compared Trump to Chamberlain (not me actually) were the most correct, in hindsight.)

By the way, I hope Trump really snoozes on North Korea. Because if he does anything more now, I think it could only make it worse.

You might consider the possibility that the reason they are lionizing communists and supporting "antifa" activities is because they are actually terrified of Donald Trump. You seem to assume that their attacks on Trump are some sort evil plot and they secretly know he's not really that bad. But maybe they honestly believe he IS that bad. Maybe they honestly fear that he's destroying democracy. In that case, going hardline pro-Trump in response does nothing to dispel that fear. In fact it makes him seem even scarier.

So they're honestly kooky. Does that make this better or worse?

If you want to make crazy people less crazy, I don't think trying to make their worst fears come true is going to help.

If you want to make crazy people less crazy, I don't think trying to make their worst fears come true is going to help.

Hazel, closing schools of social work and abolishing state licensing board for social workers would make the worst fears of social workers come true. Maintaining the emotional equilibrium of social workers is not a reason to continue to pretend that they constitute a true profession or get any real work done.

Actually enforcing the immigration laws is very upsetting to some people. Their emotional disorders should never guide public policy.

I'm responding to the claim of the original commenter that all these crazy people claiming that Trump is scaring the shit out of them makes them want to vote for Trump even more. That itself is an emotional reaction. That itself is crazy.
if you don't support the immigration laws in the first place, the reactions of people who are afraid of the immigration laws is not a rational reason to become more anti-immigration and more in favor of enforcing them. You don't support the drug laws because you think anti-drug people are being too hysterical. You don't hold more executions because you think anti-death-penalty activists are overzealous.

What's your view of people who were terrified that Obama was gonna take their guns?

Personally, I don't favor indulging irrational fears.

Well I backed off on the 'idiot' comment above, but not here. If you are terrified by Trump you are a full fledged idiot. All he's done is move us back to the center a bit. His policies are mainstream a decade ago, and liberal for two decades ago. He has made us follow the Constitution a bit more closely and pushed back at the executive's branch's usurping congressional authority.

I don't like the deficit spending or the trade war talk, but we would have got the spending or worse under Hillary and the trade war just might end in freer trade.

If you are an illegal alien, or married to one, or one is your parent, then you have lots of reasons to be afraid of of Trump.
There are about 10 million illegal aliens in America, and they have friends.
Those people are justifiably afraid of being arrested and deported and taken away from their friends and family, and in some cases the only home they've ever know.

Wasn’t the fear you’d describe also there before 2016? After all, the Obama administration deported more people than ever before.

If you are an illegal alien, or married to one, or one is your parent, then you have lots of reasons to be afraid of of Trump.

IOW, we cannot enforce the law because people living in violation of the law would see their interests injured.

No... this is why it's stupid to respond to what you think is an overzealous fear of Trump, by getting even more zealous in support of Trump. Some people have actual legitimate reasons to be afraid of Trump. They aren't being overzealous. Getting overzealous in response merely further justifies and legitimizes their fears.

Hazel, if they're anxious, it's just too bad for them. They're on the lam. They should be anxious.

They have friends and relatives who are anxious for them. there are 10 million of them , so it stands to reason that there are tens of millions of Americans who have an undocumented friend, spouse, or parent, or know someone who has an undocumeted spous, parent, or friend. That's a significqant percentage of the population. So when people say things like "Why is everyone so crazy about Trump?" Well, maybe, it's because they either are at risk of being deported or they personally know people who are at risk pf being deported. Because that's a lot of people.

You're ILLEGAL. You should be living in fear that you'll be found out. Now apply this to all other law breakers too.

And this is exactly the kind of response that makes people on the left even MORE AFRAID. Because the pro-trump forces start sounding more and more like literal fascists.

Some kind of variation of godwin's law being broken here. Basic enforcement of the law is fascism now? You really are unhinged. The only person you should fear is the guy running the local asylum.

"You should be living in fear" is not the sort of comment that makes people think "Trump is really a moderate centrist". Instead it makes people think "Holy Shit. These people really are a bunch of fucking fascists."

People breaking the law normally fear getting caught, not really odd or even new. Calling regular law enforcement fascist - that's new and not normal.

Oh come on now Hazel, you sound hysterical.

There were plenty of people afraid of Obama administration restrictions on guns, or CO2 production, or the IRS targeting conservative groups, wire tapping journalists, etc.

And that effects a whole lot more than 10 million people. People were upset about it, but you didn't see this kind of hysteria.

People on the left thought the Tea Party was full of hysterical racists. One's perception of hysteria seems to be based on whether you agree with people, it seems. And if you were "terrified" by limits on CO2 production that sounds pretty crazy to me, personally. The birthers, especially, were fucking nuts. So yeah, maybe you shouldn't judge whose reactions are hysterical and irrational unless you've put yourself in their shoes.

"People on the left thought the Tea Party was full of hysterical racists. "

Yes, I actually went to a few of those protests. They were peaceful and there were no hysterical racists. So, cite please?

"And if you were "terrified" by limits on CO2 production that sounds pretty crazy to me, personally. "

I didn't say terrified, I said afraid. As in I was in a training class with 3 or 4 engineers who ironically designed smoke stack scrubbers. They all lost their jobs, because the plants decided it was too dangerous to install expensive scrubbers, in light of the EPA's continuously changing standards.

"So yeah, maybe you shouldn't judge whose reactions are hysterical and irrational unless you've put yourself in their shoes."

LOL, maybe you should take your own advice on that one. And not go around tarring people as racists who aren't.


You think they are crazy. They thought you were crazy. The fact that you don't think you were crazy should maybe suggest to you the possibility that your mutual perceptions of one another as crazy are somewhat analagous. Just try to think of yourself as a Tea Partier ... all these people yelling "you crazy" - did that change your mind or make you less crazy? Now pretend you are an anti-trump protestor and apply the same feeling.

This is really, really funny. Hazel's defense of people on the left acting insane is to say that people on the right also act insane, by pointing out people on the left who acted insane.

She is so bad at this

Trump trying as hard as he can to gut the justice department and the rule of law is not returning to the center. No.

If you see anything else you're either very deep in a silo, or you are a Nunes style degenerate trying to push that along.

And actually that is the kind of person that worried me this week. Some of you are naked in your partisanship, with no underlying philosophy or morality, and only interested in a pursuit of power.

The Trump charity thing is hardly central, but it does give insight into Trump's view of the law and how he shapes his own behavior. Thread.


How could we really expect anyone who has been that lawless and that amoral to straighten up and be a respectable President of the United States?

I’ve always felt that demonizing a group of people — calling them “degenerate” — is a prelude to locking them up. Or worse.

I would pay money monthly for a premium subscription service made up of Tyrone blog posts.

Absolutely. Tyrone should set up a Patreon

Me too.

Paying for Tyrone's blog, I mean.

Man, if Tyler's evil twin is so interesting, imagine Robin Hanson's evil twin, Robyne. He could set the world on fire by publishing a single blog post.

gentle silent uploading

The Establishment needs to think seriously about how it shot itself in the foot in 2015 by endorsing Merkel's Million Muslim March, which is, more than anything else the cause of Brexit and Trump. What can the Establishment do to prove to voters that, contrary to appearances, they really don't want to give away the voters' countries?

The establishment needs to do no such thing.

Brexit is being undone before it can even get started. The only takeaway from this is that referenda are a terrible idea.

Trump won on a handful of old white votes in the Midwest. Some will be dead by 2020. Even more by 2024. Last gasp of opioid country inflicting their rage via the Slavery College, or sorry Electoral. This is the “get your government hands off my Medicare and disability check” crowd. Real winners here Steve. Dems way up in the polls, Blue Wave is coming.

Democratic Socialists registering over 1,000 new members a day!

Ocasio-Cortez is the future Sailer. #dealWithIt

Your speech will be illegal in 15 years in California.

Hmm, you're going full-Venezuela, man.

If it's parody, try harder.

So no retort of any substance then , yes?

Because Brexit is a shitshow.

Trump is flailing around alienating Canada and Germany while giving away the store to North Korea and Russia.

Dems are back to + 6 in the general congressional polls.

And yes, the DSA is the fastest growing political organization in the US.

“But...but Venezuela!!!” Is not going to work anywhere except Fox News.

And obviously hate speech is not protected speech. And it’s not free speech. 66% of the under 25 crowd already agree with this, it’s a generational issue and you’re losing.

And as to trolling, one of us wants kids in cages. Who’s the troll then ?

'And obviously hate speech is not protected speech.'

Even more obviously, you are wrong when talking about the U.S. Hate speech as a category is not only meaningless, it is fully protected by the 1st Amendment.

'And it’s not free speech.'

Of course it is.

'66% of the under 25 crowd already agree with this, it’s a generational issue and you’re losing'

It will take amending the Constitution before you can talk about 'winning,' and it will be a sad day when the 1st Amendment no longer applies in the U.S. Until then, the under-25 crowd will need to do better amending the Constitution than the feminists of a generation ago, who came much closer to success than people who think such a thing as 'hate speech' is a crime.

Is this Tyrone's loser son commenting here?

"Your speech will be illegal in 15 years in California."

Damn you are one fascist SOB.

My apologies for using the word fascist. I should have said: "authoritarian SOB".

And on campuses now?

Brexit was an issue before Merkel took office. It rose to the fore when the UK had to bailout depositors in the Icelandic banks. And it's own bank depositors. But common people lost their jobs and had their incomes cut.

German taxpayers didn't bailout German depositors because Germany prohibited all Icelandic banking, and regulated it's own banks. Still, Germans lost jobs. But its aging population was creating a labor shortage, while the german language created a bigger barrior than english as a second language. Maybe german history a century ago caused Poles to bypass germanny for the UK. Or maybe rock and roll makes the UK more desirable.

Germany is for rule followers, the UK for rule breakers. Even in music. Observant Muslims are rule followers.

But many in the UK are like conservatives in the US: they break rules, but expect others to follow their rules, rules conservatives make but don't follow.

Brexit is about the latter. The EU must follow UK conservatives rules, but not require UK conservatives to follow any rules.

Brexit is Trump.

Brexit advocates, like Trump, demand everyone else lose and the UK always win. But the EU won't have it, so businesses, like HD angering Trump, are planning to exit the UK.

Brexit advocates didn't sell it based on Airbus closing its UK factories employing 15,000-20,000 workers.

If memory serves me well Germany, and the US too, dumped a lot of money into Deutsche Bank. Oops, looks like it's in trouble again.

Germany’s Deutsche Bank, Again in Trouble, Received a U.S. Bailout Twice as Big as Lehman Brothers


Received a U.S. Bailout Twice as Big as Lehman Brothers

Uh, Lehman Brothers went into receivership.

From the article:"Lehman Brothers received only $183 billion in Fed emergency lending programs according to the GAO report. (See GAO chart below.) These loans were made at below-market interest rates, thus constituting a bailout."

This is a weak argument for Brexit alone, but I don't understand how anyone could take even take it seriously for Trump. Midwestern white voters are really keeping that close tabs on what is happening in Germany? It's a nice idea because it seems like it might fit the problem more broadly, but the idea that Syria refugees are really driving recent shifts in American politics is just silly.

"Midwestern white voters are really keeping that close tabs on what is happening in Germany?"

A million marching Muslims tends to grab the attention, especially when quickly followed by Muslim terrorist attacks in Paris and San Bernardino.

The punditariat doesn't have a catchy moniker for Merkel's million military-age Muslim men like "Brexit" or "Trump" so it has hard time remembering all the way back to 2015. It's like how it doesn't have a term like "Ferguson" for how Obama gave a pro-BLM speech in July 2016 and hours later a BLM terrorist gunned down all those cops in Dallas, so it's hard for them to remember that influential event.

I'm a big believer in the weak version of the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis that Orwell outlined in his Newspeak appendix to 1984: it's easier to remember a concept for which you have a word. If we had a term like "Merk-In" to go with "Brexit," the connection between the two events would be a lot easier for commentators to notice, but a lot of people who think they are sophisticated observers of world affairs can barely remember the German Chancellor's unilateral decision to impose a New Order on Europe.

Is one million refugees arriving in the EU (pop 508.5 million) really “a New Order?”

Sounds like hysteria and race baiting.

Does someone really think the Tea Party cared about protectionism, particularly about insiders making a killing by keeping out competition?

"Republicans are pushing bills to crack down on left-wing protests against conservative talks, while the left is trying to limit those same conservative talks."

More of Cowen's fake news. No one is "pushing bills to crack down on left-wing protests against conservative talks" the NYT article describes efforts to prevent repeated disruption of conservative talks by the same individuals. Preventing the speech of others is not itself "free speech", quite the contrary.

Well, yes. Considering that TC’s news comes mostly from the NYT and WaPo, should we be surprised?


I want to say: "More of Bmcburey fake news.", but I won't unless you use that term again.

You need a fact checker, so here I am.

1. Re: No one is pushing a legislative crackdown on protests

Fact: " In response to epic protests around the country, state legislators in nearly 20 states proposed bills in 2017 that would restrict people’s right to protest. The ACLU fought back and many of the bills died or were amended to remove unconstitutional language. For those that passed, we’re hopeful that protestors will exercise their right to dissent and courts will prevent the use of these laws to unconstitutionally burden protest activity. This map is current as of June 23, 2017. "

Here is a link with a map: https://www.aclu.org/issues/free-speech/rights-protesters/anti-protest-bills-around-country

2. Berkeley formed a free speech commission and here is its report:


More free speech rights protected at Berkeley than at a Trump rally where the President says: Get him out of here, rough him up.

Here are a list of statements in which Trump incited threatening crowd behavior along with video clips. It is from a fact checker org:


For 20 points and the right to go home early, who said: “If you do (hurt him), I’ll defend you in court, don’t worry about it”

1. The ACLU is right to push back against protest laws. Score one for the ACLU

2. Your complaint is that Republicans don’t protect the heckler’s veto? That is absolutely unrelated to free speech. Shouting in a closed event is not free speech, which is what those people were doing.

You don’t have the right to stand up in a theater and start shouting.

What bill et al want is the right to choose which speech is allowed. And judging by college campuses he’s getting it. How many more Professor concussions before administrations say enough.


You create a straw man to knock it down. You are claiming I said something I did not.

Moreover, you evidently did not read the Berkeley Commission Report, either, nor are you an advocate of free speech if you deliberately shout a falsehood out and do not expect someone to come back and point out your falsehoods when they are so clearly in front of them by simply going back and reading what was said.

Go read the Berkeley Report. Go read the ACLU material. For that matter, join the ACLU and understand that everyone needs to protect the right of speech.

And, Masq, don't expect to get away with misrepresentation without a response.

So let’s see, you conflate a government university and a private event in your comparison of free speech rights. Let me make it clear: you have no free speech rights in terms of disrupting private events from the audience. You know this, and yet you use this as your benchmark.

Then you get upset that I pointed this out.

Berkeley report is a joke :

1. Adds a requirement that student groups submit an explanation of how guest speakers “comport with the Principles of the Community.”

2.”explore” how to legally set a cap for security costs when approving events, thus giving antifa veto power over speakers on campus

3. Right wing speakers do “not need to speak on campus to exercise their right to free speech “

I’m done, I don’t need to waste my time with the rest of this nonsense report.

You have a game of posting irrelevant nonsense in the hope that no one will read it.

As to point 3, you are flat out lying when you say that the report says that right wing speakers should not be able to speak on campus.

Here is the conclusion of the report:

"The Commission heard mainly from students offended by the messages brought by Milo Yiannopoulos, Ann Coulter, Ben Shapiro, and supporters, but also received testimony from conservative students who felt their political beliefs made them pariahs on campus, to the point where some of them feared for their physical safety after the 2016 election. A member of the Berkeley College Republicans alleged this ostracism extends to how conservative students are graded.21 The Commission feels strongly that no student should be evaluated more harshly or treated with less respect due to his or her political outlook, no matter how offensive that outlook might be to the instructor or to classmates. Nor does anyone on the Commission condone the kind of violence that erupted on February 1, 2017 in response to Yiannopoulos’s arrival on campus.
That said, the Commission recommends that all members of the campus community be mindful of one another and do unto others as they would want done to themselves. There are better ways to expand the political dialogue on campus than to invite a shock jock performance artist, as Professor Rossman characterized Yiannopoulos, to belittle historically oppressed communities. RSOs have the right to invite such provocateurs to campus; but they also have an obligation to honor not just the campus’s Principles of Community, but its mission of education, research, and public service by balancing their right to hold events with their responsibility to the community. Similarly, those offended by a speaker have every right to counter-protest, but not to deny the speaker a platform or to commit violence, including property damage, in the name of their ideology."

Finally, you may hope that others don't read this with your encouragement, but I doubt the readers of these comments are so willfully blind.

Read the Berkeley Report for yourself, readers, and think for yourself after gathering the information.

Lol you read the summary, this is such a perfect example of the left gaslighting.

I made it to page 9. Here is the literal f’ing verbatim quote.

“These speakers... do not need to be on campus to exercise the right of free speech.”

The implication is obvious.

I don't find the elipsis quote on page nine, so please copy and paste the full paragraph in which the quote is taken and print it below.

There is a discussion about Major Events, costs of the same, security measures, requirements for student organizations, etc.

The implication is obvious that you have a problem with directly quoting the report and being honest with the readers.

Notice that Masq has not provided the full quote and the contents of the paragraph it was in.

Game, set, and match.

Berkeley officially does not "condone" the use of arson and physical violence to disrupt conservative speech but, considering that others might choose this method of "protest", Berkeley has decided to require conservatives to pay more than others to give speeches on campus. A lot more. That's "free speech" in Berkeley in 2018 and attempting to change the situation is a "crackdown" on "protests."

No, once again you are making things up. What the report says that it is neutral as to Major Events. If it is an antifa, the socialist workers party, nazis, or gold star mothers, the rule for Major Events apply to both.

Bcmcburney and Moo Cow, and Masq depend on an unformed reader to propagate their propaganda.

Read the report for yourself: https://chancellor.berkeley.edu/sites/default/files/report_of_the_commission_on_free_speech.pdf

Don't be a sheep. Read it for yourself and get better informed by reading the source material directly. You owe it to yourself.

Sorry, Moo Cow, I see I made a mistake in referencing back to what you were commenting on.

Bill, the content of the report is not the issue. The report itself is meaningless when, despite the report, Berkeley's actual practice is to treat speakers differently based on the viewpoints expressed. Berkeley first cancelled Ann Coulter's speech and then allowed it but only once school was out. When did they do anything remotely similar to a left-wing speaker? They say they don't condone violence in the report but in real life they sit back and allow "protesters" to set fire to an occupied building because it was mostly occupied by people attending a speech by somebody they don't like. Among other things, the so-called "protesters" did $100,000 in damage to University of California property in February of 2017 but, to date, there have been zero arrests and no disciplinary actions for the students and staff known to have participated. What does the phrase "not condone" mean if the Berkeley Administration literally takes no action AT ALL in response to the level of violence on display at that time? Would they act any differently if they did condone it?

Moreover, to return to the original point, NO ONE is attempting to suppress left wing speech or "protests" which do not take the particular form of efforts to prevent speech by others. Attempts to make it possible for conservatives to actually exercise their First Amendment rights occasionally on the Berkeley campus without being subjected to physical attacks and disruptions are not attempts to "crackdown" on "protesters".

When confronted with the facts, you say:

"The content of the report is not the issue."

And, I suppose its also not the issue that the University has set a policy that applies to everyone, left or right.

It must be disconcerting that people actually can read the report and not just your characterizations of it, nor your predictions of the future.

Sometimes the facts, and clear statements of policy that apply to all persons, are difficult to deal with, particularly when you choose to believe that which is not true.

Everyone, go read the report and judge for yourself.

Here is the link: https://chancellor.berkeley.edu/sites/default/files/report_of_the_commission_on_free_speech.pdf

General Gaslighti!!!

You are a bold one.

Masq, Do you think calling me names means anything and doesn't reflect on you.

This really is just gaslighting.

I started the thread to comment on the farcical left-wing "protester's" right to suppress conservative speech via thuggery. Bill does want to talk about that and, instead, touts this sad joke of a UC Berkeley report. Supporting "free speech" in theory while making damn sure no conservatives are ever allowed to speak on campus in the future.

I have no doubt this will work in Berkeley. I don't think anyone will be fooled anywhere else and, even in Berkeley, they won't so much be fooled as just pretend.

BC, What you are afraid of is people actually reading the report:


I looked at your aclu report and found this example of (mostly successful) "anti-protest" laws:


HB 1293: Passed. This law criminalizes protests on private property where the notice against trespassing is “clear from the circumstances.” It also creates a civil trespass offense that gives officers the option of issuing a citation and $250 fine. Bill text available here
SB 2302: Passed. This law allows the attorney general to respond to a large protest by appointing out-of-state law enforcement officers as “ad-hoc special agents.” Bill text available here.
HB 1426: Passed. This law increased penalties for riot offenses. Bill text available here.
HB 1304: Passed. This law punishes wearing a mask while committing a crime (including minor offenses) to avoid recognition or identification in any public forum, or in a group on private property without written permission. Bill text available here.
HB 1203: Died. This “hit and kill” bill would have allowed drivers to run over any protester obstructing a highway, as long as a driver does so accidentally.
HB 1193: Died. Would have punished protesters at private facilities and created penalties for those directly or indirectly cause more than $1,000 in economic harm to the government or an individual with up to 5 years in prison.

Seems pretty reasonable to me; what's your problem?

Rich, You omitted quite a few of the states and quite a few of the pieces of legislation offered. I don't want to accuse you of cherry picking, but the ACLU map and link shows SEVENTEEN States, not just North Dakota and the North Dakota bills you listed. In those SEVENTEEN states, there were a total of 35 anti=protest bills.

So, anyone can review these bills on a state by state basis themselves to judge the reasonableness of the bills. But, I think you cannot deny my challenge to the claim by Masq above that no one is pushing a legislative crackdown on protest. The facts are otherwise.

For interested readers, here is a link to the ACLU map of states with a summary by state of the proposed or enacted laws: https://www.aclu.org/issues/free-speech/rights-protesters/anti-protest-bills-around-country

Jesus Christ you are one bold liar , you lie about comments upthread that people can read instantly.

Here is you: “ ...the claim by Masq above that no one is pushing a legislative crackdown on protest.”

Which is in response to my comment: “The ACLU is right to push back against protest laws. Score one for the ACLU”


I mean good f’in god man i get your game about lying in source documents that people won’t read, but lying about a comment upthread?

General Gaslighti

You are a bold one.

Maybe, Masq, you don't read what you write.

First, you are right on one point. I attributed BMCberney's remarks to you : "More of Cowen's fake news. No one is "pushing bills to crack down on left-wing protests against conservative talks" (see above).

2, Masq, You state: "Your complaint is that Republicans don’t protect the heckler’s veto? That is absolutely unrelated to free speech." These are public events, like it or not.

3. I can understand why you do not want people to read the Berkeley report, because your earlier statements are refuted by it. I encourage people to read that document.

Today I learned:

A) Quoting someone as saying the literal opposite (aka slander) is the fault of the slandered

B) Bill was defending hecklers veto the ENTIRE time and trolled the whole comment section

C) he didn’t believe it was a strawman at all, since “these are public events”

D) bill does not understand why shouting in a movie theater will cause him to be removed , “uh this is America and a public event” -bill

E) bill ignored all three points (quotes!) from the report I brought up and then accused me of lying and propaganda

F) bill doesn’t know how to use control f on a pdf, thus being old

General Gaslighti!
You are a bold one

Masq, No amount of pointing out sources of information, providing facts and links, or challenging you to provide a un-ellipsed full quote in a document (see above) will stop you. Go ahead and flame out with name calling. I wear asbestos.

Go ahead, call me names. I don't care. That's all you're doing. You have nothing to support your claims. You

I provided three quotes from the document. If you can’t control f then stop using the internet please.

You are gaslighting. You have been gaslighting the entire time.

However, let’s start fresh?

The constructive debate we could have been having the entire time is:

1. Do people have a right to go into events and disrupt the event? Is this free speech ? You say yes I say no.

2. Do public universities have a right to stop student groups from inviting speakers based on the “principles of the community”? You say yes I say no.

3. Do the recommendations in the document, NOT the summary, adhere to the principles of free speech?
By the way this includes the text about finding legal routes to shutting down speakers based on security outlays by the university.


Masq, I'm glad that you have become more civil.

1. Do people have the right to disrupt an event. Do I have the right to boo at the event. (If I am a Congressman, do I have the right to shout liar during the state of the Union). Do I have the right to raise a sign. Do I have a right to chant with others. What punishment will you impose and what law will you assert.

2. Principles of community was one factor, and not the exclusive factor, that is considered with others and also with respect to risks to others, security costs, sponsorship by students, etc. Read the report for all the considerations.

3. The recommendations have to be applied to facts of a particular case, so if 3 part-time students want to host the American Nazi convention on campus which will have to pay $4 million for security outlays, they do not want to provide for their own security and there is another public facility down the road.... Yes, I do think the document comports to principles of free speech. But, if someone disagrees, has standing (that is, are actually planning an event rather than hypothesizing) they can and probably would seek review if denied unreasonably.

Sir, I will answer your points with civility if it is responded to in kind.

1. The question is not booing per se. It is intentionally going to an organized event and preventing the speaker from speaking. I absolutely do not say that people have the right to show up at a Democrat fundraiser event and shout and scream to prevent Obama from speaking. Throw the bums out!

2. I did read the report, In full. I did not misquote or lie about the report. As someone who fervently believes in free speech I believe the rioters should be charged with the expense of security of nonviolent speakers.

However I understand the plight of a university. Their funds can be drained by neo Nazi fascists inciting riots. I get it dude. However, I believe it is a prerogative and responsibility of the security forces to make people understand they have no right to keep people from speaking.

3. As someone who is proud of our universities, especially as to their lack of racial profiling and discrimination (golden state!), I worry about ideological discrimination. I read the report and I do not find enough statements that unequivocally support the right of free speech to mollify my concerns.

Milo is a troll. I understand the response.

I’m not a Breitbart dude or a conservative even.

However my fear is that Berkeley will use that as an excuse to enforce their own ideology. And I love Berkeley and studied there, and to me it was always a place of well meaning discussion and debate. I’m worried that is being lost.

Go Bears.


First fake news, now fake facts from a fake fact checker.

Efforts to suppress or disrupt speech by others are not themselves "speech" and efforts to prevent the illegal suppression of speech are not a "legislative crackdown" on "protests." Among other things, the Berkeley "protests" in February last year involved efforts by "protesters" to set fire to the building where others were gathered to hear a speech and physically attack attendees as the left. The "protest by arson" efforts resulted in cancellation of the particular speech in question and threats of similar actions by the same and other arsonist/protesters resulted in cancellation of other speeches. Legislative efforts to allow conservatives to exercise their own First Amendment rights on college campuses without being subjected to threats of physical injury and death are not a "crackdown" on "protests."

During the 2016 election, the left engaged in a organized campaign to blockade Trump rallies and physically assault attendees as they entered or left the rallies. Inside the event locations, "protesters" disrupted speeches with shouting and chanting. These activities are not "speech" or "protests" they are fascist thuggery. It is a pity that Snopes has not found time to show those video clips.

Your statement is unworthy of a response because it doesn't say anything other than your views. You can read the Chancellor's report and you can read the quotes from Donald Trump along with videos of the statements. You may not like that, but I don't care. Others may, and they can, using those resources, find out for themselves and form their informed opinion.

For 20 points and the right to go home early, who said: “If you do (hurt him), I’ll defend you in court, don’t worry about it”

Do we need to limit the answer to the USA?

'I do respect the Laffer Curve'

So Tyrone wrote the Tyler part, and Tyler wrote the Tyrone part.

Prof. Cowen is truly making life hard for his hordes of devoted Straussians.

Here is David Brooks repeating the same point he made earlier this week that individual liberty emanates from order, and that order is a product of a shared community: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/06/28/opinion/anthony-kennedy-individualism. While Tyrone may believe he promotes individual liberty ("[p]olarization . . . meant order"), Tyrone, like Justice Kennedy (“At the heart of liberty is the right to define one’s own concept of existence, of meaning, of the universe, and of the mystery of human life.”), would be wrong.

In case some readers don't get the distinction, does order emanate from individual liberty (the libertarian view) or does individual liberty emanate from order (the conservative, or Brooks', view). In his column today, Brooks also makes the point that individual liberty without community leads to loss of liberty: "You’d think it would lead to a very small state that would leave a lot of freedom for people. In fact, it leads to a big, intrusive state. If you strip away all the communal commitments that help people govern themselves from within, then very soon you find you have to pass all sorts of laws to govern them from without."

If you strip away all the communal commitments that help people govern themselves from within, then very soon you find you have to pass all sorts of laws to govern them from without.

This is sort of a point I have been trying to make with regards to social norms. If we're not going to have public accomodations laws, then we have to have strong social norms suppressing racial discrimination. The libertarian position should be in favor of private social norms rather than laws. That's what the rise of "political correctness" and "social justice" are: they are society self-organizing to develop non-governmental mechanisms to solve problems like racism.
If you extend libertarianism to mean not just political freedom, but the freedom to do whatever you want without social consequences, you run into a fundamental contradiction, because you have to impose some sort of coercion on others in order to suppress the "social consequences". Whether that is laws or just norms against being mean to racists or something. In the latter case, you are left with a kind of paradox - trying to have social norms against having social norms.

This is sort of a point I have been trying to make with regards to social norms. If we're not going to have public accomodations laws, then we have to have strong social norms suppressing racial discrimination.

We 'have to have' no such thing. It's your preference we have such a thing. Freedom of contract and freedom of association shouldn't be contingent on Hazel's fuzzy conception of who should and should not be treated deferentially.

Freedom of contract and freedom of association aren't dependent on not having social norms against racism. You're perfectly free to be as racist as you want, as long as you accept that other people are free to shun you for that.

Nothing wrong with that, but people aren't shunning. There are legal consequences which violate freedom of association. Shun away, as will I, but when you cross the line to harassment, beware.

Freedom of contract and freedom of association aren't dependent on not having social norms against racism.

Make up your mind.

It's not the black person's freedom of association rights that depend on having social norms against racism - it's their ability to participate in society as an equal.

Further, you could really argue it both ways - you must have laws suppressing violence (i.e. order) in order to have the liberty necessary for society to self-organize the social order needed to have liberty in the absence of laws. So you have a base-level institutional order, layered with a system of private social norms which creates the environment in which a culture of liberty is able to thrive. It's kind of an ecology of liberty layered with public institutions and private social culture.

Of course, disorder (incivility) has been the strategy of the right, some opinion leaders even encouraging the incivility. Now it seems to be the left's turn, or at least some on the left are defending (encouraging) the incivility that's likely to come from the left. https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2018/06/incivility/563963/ I suppose Tyrone would argue that the incivility on the right and the incivility on the left results in an equilibrium that Tyrone calls "order". What Tyrone doesn't account for is that the incivility will escalate, leading to chaos.

The 'of course' is still in effect. When rayward says of course, whatever follows is completely wrong.

Civility was rebranded "Political Correctness" and was abandonded by the right in the 1990s. Hence we all know the word Feminazi after it being used for decades by the right.

No, civility was abandoned and replace by political correctness. PC wants to force new norms onto people by people they are hostile to.

Civility is still there. It's just never been a particularly high value for partisans.

In some ways the urban/rural divide is greater than ever despite the electronic media's dominance of cultural input. This is because conformity is a more dominant aspect of rural life than its urban counterpart. In fact, that's why the most eccentric rural individuals end up in the city.

In a rural setting people have better personal knowledge of their neighbors through simple observation as well as the more familiar relationships of churches, schools and the other institutions of daily life. Rural folk must conform to succeed. Urban people can be social deviants and still flourish because of their relative anonymity.

Especially as he's anti-incarceration, Tyler should let Tyrone out more.

>these especially fractious times

No, just because the left is pissed off does not make these "especially fractious times."

Haha oh poor neoliberals, rapidly going from dominating both parties to dominating neither.

See? This is how you (Trump supporting libertarians), are doing the bidding of the far left.

I'm with Tyrone! Best blogger here.

Tyrone needs to read up on his poli sci research. There's policy/ideological polarization, which isn’t increasing as Tyrone noted, but then there's affective polarization (I.e., tribalism and mood affiliation), which is increasing.

I was going to say something similar to this, but I couldn't help but think that this post represents some sort of double reverse 360° metamodernist Straussian statement, and that perhaps your (accurate) observation was part of it's point.

Ok I laughed at "to thunderous applause."

I agree with Tyrone on the convergence of the Republican party toward the Democratic party that Trump and his supporters have brought. It is almost as if those blue collar GOP voters never bought into the GOP line on economic freedom but were anti international trade all along.

And Tyrone doesn't even mention the Convergence on North Korea and Russia where the Democrats seem to have landed slightly to the right of the Republicans.

And sometimes the more trivial the differences are on the issues the worse they behave toward one another, consider sports fans.

But on the other hand, the almost inexorable tendency toward polarization driven by the two-party system and the electoral college and all that is going to do it's work on Democrats as well.

If polarization were an inherent property of two-party systems and the EC, wouldn't it have happened a long time ago?

"It is almost as if those blue collar GOP voters never bought into the GOP line on economic freedom but were anti international trade all along."

People are always going to follow their economic interests. And the economic studies are very clear, trade from low wage countries has been detrimental to manufacturing employees and/or service employees who's jobs were fungible.

Overall the country benefited, but it's clear the gains weren't even distributed and there were clear losers. The losers are naturally going to try and change that.

FREE TYRONE #freetyrone

Please, please, please... A restaurant review by Tyrone!

"Nor do I see either party speaking up for free speech on campus, except in the most opportunistic terms."

The left controls academia so the criticism on this point very deservedly rests with them.

The 60s liberals let George Lincoln Rockwell on campus. Meanwhile the modern liberals can't even handle Ben Shapiro (lol).

Rockwell at UCLA in 1967:


Tyler would be highly unlikely to link to one of my cranky and simplistic political posts. Glad to see that Tyrone saw something of value.

When I was in college many years ago I took several political science classes. On the first day of one of them, the professor walked into the classroom, looked around at the large number of students assembled, most of them political science majors well-acquainted with one another, and said that the class was a reflection of the affluent society that was America. Of course, he was insulting all those political science majors, but few knew. Fast forward to today. My observation is that the large number of self-described libertarians is a reflection of our affluent society, the libertarians today the analogue to the political science majors in my college days many years ago.

Most voters don't have sufficiently clear or consistent policy views to separate into distinct ideological camps. So on one level, the country is not polarized. And it will never be polarized on policy.

But even with a largely clueless electorate, you can observe subgroups dividing on other dimensions -- such as racial and cultural lines. When organized parties reinforce those divisions for short-term electoral gain, things become toxic. That's where we are at, now: old white America vs young, multicultural America.

well excuse all approximately 4.6 billion of us across the face of he globe, but after about 1978 we decided not to dump on the Asians anymore
whats up with Harvard?
we called the bias response unit but they don't answer the phone
and the dean for cultural personality malapropiosm cannot be found.
don't most cooked metrics erupt from the bowels of the sociology dept.
that ken jeong's personality is pretty good

Tyrone posts would be even better if Tyrone trolled the comment section.


*thunderous applause*

Always interesting when Tyler goes Straussian. My reading of this is that Tyler increasingly fears writing about potentially unpopular opinions in public.

None of this is any farther away from mainstream politeness standards than the mean Caplan post. But then, Caplan doesn't have a recurring editorial slot at Bloomberg either.

IOW, is Tyler's fear of stating unpopular opinions a sign of his increasing national profile (and accompanying conservatism) or decreased space for so-called free thought in the political "center"?

This post is mildly alarming.

'My reading of this is that Tyler increasingly fears writing about potentially unpopular opinions in public. '

Yes, his fear of Trump supporters thinking he actually has principles has been on growing display.

'This post is mildly alarming.'

Nah - anyone paying attention knows in reality, Prof. Cowen hasn't had any principles for decades that conflict with the rich getting richer, and these days, the people that benefit from that basic concept rely on Trump supporters.

Thanks Tyrone.

For my part I’ve viewed “polarization” mostly as a political tactic for many years now. If you’re in the business of winning support the important thing is for people to think there are monsters waiting to devour them if they don’t support you.

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