February 10, 2019

The Z Blog Power Hour Episode 79: Beautiful Losers

The response to last week’s show was interesting, in that I got a few queries about people I mentioned from the old days. I’ve noticed this before whenever I talk about the paleocons and their battles with the neocons in the 80’s and 90’s. Everyone knows about the neocons, at least they think they do, but the paleos seem to be fading from memory as they fade from the scene. It is a case of the winners writing the history books, so I thought a show about the paleocons would be something worth doing.

 The original plan was to do a segment on the various people who made up movement, maybe read from their best work, but that would have been too long and too boring. I like doing these sorts of episodes, but this is not a history podcast. What I settled on is the formula I’ve used for other episodes. What’s interesting to me about the paleos is they were right about a lot of things, especially their own flaws, but they failed anyway. It is a great example of how having the facts on your side is not enough. 

 Putting the show together, what struck me is just how much overlap there is between the alt-right and the paleos. Despite this, you never hear the alt-right talk about these guys or credit them for their ideas. There is an anti-intellectualism to the alt-right that is maybe a reaction to the academic aesthetic of the paleos.

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