Tonight, Vox Day talked about Aristotle’s Rhetoric in his darkstream, viewable on Periscope. As Vox explains, this is very relevant to fighting against the left, as they primarily deal with emotions, and Rhetoric has very specific prescriptions for dealing emotional damage.
One change that I am taking in this post versus the content of Rhetoric, is that this focuses on causing the audience to feel negatively towards you, rather than feeling negatively towards your opponent. So far, generating negative emotions in the left towards us has been more effective than generating negative emotions between members of the left. “Democrats are the Real Racists” falls in the latter, ineffective, category, while “Build the Wall, Deport them All” falls in the former.
The first emotion Aristotle discusses, anger, is something the New & Alt Right are very accustomed to generating in the left. Denying the left what they want, disregarding their perceived social standing and showing contempt for their values are all things that generate anger. Going after someone’s insecurities is also a sure-fire way to generate anger.
The other ways to inflict emotional pain aren’t as well explored, in my opinion. The next painful emotion Aristotle discusses is enmity. Enmity naturally follows from repeated anger, and is directed at groups as well as individuals. One thing we could do more in this realm is to convince the left that they have more enemies than they realize, and that their tactics are turning regular people against them.
Following enmity is fear. The left should be reminded what lies in store for them if the right should prevail, as well as what will happen if they prevail. Remind them that they won’t be Politburo members, they’ll be eating moldy bread and fearing for their lives with the rest of us should they succeed.
The left lives on creating shame in others and cowers more to this emotion than to anything else. Shame is created when someone feels they have done, are doing, or will do a disgraceful thing. The mere accusation of having done something disgraceful is usually enough to defang a leftist and inflict emotional pain.
Unkindness is an odd emotion to inflict on someone. Unkindness, differing from anger, merely denotes that an action was done for reasons other than the kindness of the actor. Doing a favor for someone on the left, and then saying you did it to be conspicuously nice, or because you owed them a favor does not seem like particularly effective to me. Maybe it would cause the person you were targeting to long for your approval.
Another emotion Aristotle discusses at length is indignation, which he defines as the emotional pain experienced because of someone’s unmerited success. This ties in interestingly to the concept of privilege. Showcasing examples of privilege, and glorifying it, would certainly cause a massive sense of indignation within the typical social justice warrior, though perhaps it would cause the same emotion pain in too many other people.
The final painful emotion is envy. Unlike indignation, envy is emotional pain resulting from people who have merited success. Rubbing the left’s nose in merited success may be less likely to cause emotional pain, but has less risk at backfiring with the wider public. If you’re successful, flaunt it.
Those are my quick thoughts on causing emotional pain in the left. As I said previously, it focuses their negative emotions on you, rather than trying to pit the left against itself. The latter is more of what Aristotle had in mind, but at this juncture, making the right the focus of their negative emotions has proved fruitful.