Know Your Enemy

Masks Off: The Right in 2020

Episode Summary

Matt and Sam look back at what 2020 revealed about the state of American conservatism, from rightwing intellectuals' deranged responses to the pandemic to Trump's desperate attempts to over turn the election results.

Episode Notes

Matt and Sam—in a rare, just-the-two-of-them episode—look back at what a bad year revealed about a number of bad people, especially the coterie of rightwing intellectuals and politicians who have downplayed the pandemic, exacerbated anxieties about the uprising against police violence, and played along with Donald Trump's conspiracy-fueled attempts to steal the presidential election. What holds these efforts together, and what do they say about the state of conservatism? It turns out that 2020 confirmed the anti-democratic, revanchist character of the Right in the United States.

Sources Cited:

Matthew Sitman, "Why the Pandemic is Driving Conservative Intellectuals Mad," New Republic, May 21, 2020

Matthew Sitman, "Time in the Eternal City," Commonweal, December 24, 2020

Sam Adler-Bell, "Conservative Incoherence," Dissent, Summer 2020

Bret Stephens, "America Shouldn't Have to Play by New York Rules," New York Times, April 24, 2020

"Trump’s Focus as the Pandemic Raged: What Would It Mean for Him?" New York Times, December 31, 2020

"Pence Welcomes Futile Bid by G.O.P. Lawmakers to Overturn Election," New York Times, January 2, 2021

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