———–Updated at 12:55 PM on 20 May 2016———-
I’ve gone back in and replaced the crude copy and paste of Jonathan Weisman’s twitter timeline from yesterday with a screen grab saved as a pdf. This will make it easier on the site and on the eyes, but if you haven’t looked and want to, or want an easy way to save this for posterity, there are 14 pages in a pdf file below the fold.
Earlier today The Washington Post published a very thoughtful essay by Brookings Institute Senior Fellow Robert Kagan. The New York Times Deputy Washington Editor, Jonathon Weisman, tweeted about it. A short time later all hell broke lose on his twitter timeline. While several mainstream news outlets have picked up the story, the majority of them in Israel, I think its important to capture some of this stuff. While it is impossible to prove much about people using nyms on the Internet and Twitter, many of the folks sending this stuff to Weisman are also claiming to be Trump supporters. Regardless of whether Donald Trump and his campaign want this type of support and supporters, this is more evidence of a very disturbing trend that has been developing through the 2016 presidential primary season. I’ve copied and pasted/screen grabbed all of the offensive material, which is after the page break.
And you are all warned, some of it is very, very vile. But it goes right to our past discussions about destroying the Grey Zone/the civil space that we all live in as citizens regardless of our ethnicities, religions, places of origin, etc. These types of expressions are an attempt to draw hard and fast lines around what is an American and who can be one. Moreover, they seek to push others into either choosing sides or to shake their heads and go along to get along out of fear of losing whatever safety, security, and prosperity they have. In many ways the response that Mr. Weisman received on twitter is a perfect example of what Dr. Kagan wrote about in his op-ed.
It also goes to the core theme of the Trump campaign: “I, we, America will be treated well… (Or else!)” The Trump campaign, and specifically Donald Trump’s on the stump, at debates, and during interviews rhetoric is setting the conditions to fully transform the Republican Party from the Grand Old Party to the Herrenvolk Party whether he intends to do so or not. Herrenvolk democracy is a populist, using Seymour Martin Lipset’s four typology description of political/civil society, form of government and governance. In a herrenvolk democracy one party, usually the majority party, but not always so, defined by ethnic or racial categorization dominates the state, society, economy, and usually religion too, over all other parties, movements, groups, and sub-cultures. The latter are tolerated at best and actively persecuted at worst. What Weisman’s twitter feed demonstrates is that those with the impulse towards herrenvolkism are feeling especially confident right now. And the potential danger that poses to America should be taken very, very seriously.
(If anyone can get a better/proper screen grab, which I’m having trouble with in Chrome, please grab all of it and email it to me and I’ll update it.)