How the Internet conquered the right, killed the tea party, and elected Donald Trump

Then the internet took over on the right. It unearthed and organized a new generation—one that didn’t want to use established means to right the wrongs of a systemic crisis. For the new online right, the goal was nearly the opposite: to infect the system and heighten the crisis, forcing the system to replicate behavior the system didn’t want to.

And, to the shock of TV people everywhere, it worked. But the TV-culture view of the digital right is still dangerously wrong. True, the new online right of the Trump era doesn’t care about balanced budgets. True, that’s because it rejects the politics of “responsibility” altogether. But why? Because if you’re on the right and you’re immersed in digital life, the way you approach politics as a whole has been, let’s say, “digitized.”

Online life doesn’t habituate us to transparency and responsibility in financial matters. What it does counsel is that everything continuously expands and can’t be corralled. It teaches that no one entity can encompass the whole.

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