A Note to the Right Regarding the “Alt-Right” - The Objective Standard

Dear friends of individualism and capitalism:

Please, for the love of liberty, do not accept the claim that the so-called “alt-right” is part of the right or that the right must atone for the evils of this allegedly “new” movement.

The “alt-right” is not part of the right; it is part of the left—specifically, the racist left. And it is not a new movement. It stands for regular, age-old white nationalism, as advocated by “Progressives,” Democrats, and National Socialists for more than a century.1

The neologism “alt-right” (short for “alternative right”) was coined by white nationalist Richard B. Spencer, who says, “race is the foundation of identity,” and America is “a white country designed for ourselves and our posterity.” Spencer advocates “an ethno-state . . . a new society based on very different ideals than, say, the Declaration of Independence.” He mocks “abstract values” such as “capitalism, and free markets, and the Constitution”; calls for white Americans to embrace racial “identity,” “nationalism,” and “a sense of ‘us’”; and says America “belongs to white people, culturally, politically, socially, everything.”2

And Spencer is not an aberration; his views are the norm in the “alt-right.” . . .


1. See, for example, Dylan Matthews, “Woodrow Wilson Was Extremely Racist—Even by the Standards of His Time,” Vox, November 20, 2015, https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2015/11/20/9766896/woodrow-wilson-racist; Carol Swain, “The Inconvenient Truth about the Democratic Party,” PragerU, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g_a7dQXilCo; George Watson, “Hitler and the Socialist Dream,” The Independent, November 22, 1998, http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/hitler-and-the-socialist-dream-1186455.html.

2. Christopher Caldwell, “What the Alt-Right Really Means,” December 2, 2016, https://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/02/opinion/sunday/what-the-alt-right-really-means.html; Joseph Goldstein, “Alt-Right Gathering Exults in Trump Election with Nazi-Era Salute,” November 20, 2016, https://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/21/us/alt-right-salutes-donald-trump.html; C. J. Ciaramella, “Some Well-Dressed White Nationalists Gathered in DC Last Weekend,” October 29, 2013, https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/kwpadw/some-well-dressed-white-nationalists-gathered-in-dc-last-weekend; “Richard Spencer Speech at Texas A&M University,” December 6, 2016, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oh78qrWdi58; “How a White Nationalist Leader Wants to Go Mainstream with His Racist Movement,” PBS Newshour, December 14, 2016, http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/white-nationalist-leader-wants-go-mainstream-racist-movement/.

3. Andrew Anglin, “Ahead of Clinton Speech, WaPo Does Another Alt-Right Article,” The Daily Stormer, August 24, 2016, http://bit.ly/2vW31qM.

4. Ayn Rand, Introduction to Objectivist Epistemology, 2nd rev. ed., edited by Harry Binswanger and Leonard Peikoff (New York: Penguin, 1990), 72.

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