On Thursday’s episode of “The Charlie Kirk Show,” Daily Wire Editor-in-Chief Ben Shapiro joined the host to provide the audience an “unfiltered take on the state of the alt-right, common good conservatives, and the troubling ascension of big government on the left…and the right.”
Kirk kicks off the conversation by describing Shapiro and himself as “Public Enemy #1 and #2 of the Alt-Right,” to which Shapiro jokes, “Welcome to the party, pal.”
Asked by Kirk about his response to the Alt-Right’s targeting of conservatives, Shapiro notes that, for him, it’s been going on for a long time. “They’ve been targeting me since 2015, 2016,” says Shapiro, who was the biggest target of the movement in 2016. What has been somewhat “surprising,” says Shapiro, is the movement’s resurgence in recent months.
“What it demonstrates are a couple of things,” Shapiro suggests. “One, there are a group of people who feel as though their questions are not being answered in mainstream fashion. And I think that because those questions are not being answered in mainstream fashion, they are looking for people to answer them in the worst possible ways.”
“That’s a point [prominent psychologist] Steven Pinker has made before,” Shapiro notes. “I think it’s exactly right. I think that it’s incumbent on people in politics to give answers to questions, even if the questions happen to be based on bad ideas.”
What’s most concerning, says Shapiro, is that some “pretend that opposition to the Alt-Right is somehow opposition to restrictions on immigration, or that opposition to the Alt-Right is somehow based on opposition to social conservatism.”
“That’s a lie,” Shapiro underscores. “These are very, very distinct causes and very distinct philosophies and ideologies. And the fact that the Alt-Right is masquerading as sort of a mainstream/Paleocon movement, as opposed to what they are – which is pretty overtly a white separatist, white majoritarian movement – the fact that people are willing to buy that is foolishness, obviously.”
Discussing the coordinated efforts by Alt-Righters to disrupt conservative events, including both Kirk’s and Shapiro’s past events, Shapiro says the disruption campaign “collapsed when it saw the light of day,” as evidenced at his speech at Stanford in November.
As The Daily Wire reported, Shapiro tackled the movement head on in a speech at Stanford that followed a series of coordinated disruption attempts by the Alt-Right. In the speech, Shapiro addressed the “dangerous game” being played by both the Alt-Right and radical Left, arguing that both groups are actually “feed[ing] off one another.”
“The radical Left and the Alt-Right need each other,” said Shapiro. “And they’re playing a game, in which the radical Left seeks to delegitimize anyone who isn’t radically Left by lumping them in with the despicable Alt-Right — and in which the Alt-Right seeks to make common cause with anyone ‘cancelled’ by the radical Left, specifically with the supporters of President Trump who have been maligned falsely as evil by the radical Left, in order to artificially boost their numbers. These two goals are mutually reinforcing.”
Shapiro and Kirk go on to discuss the differences between “common good” conservatives vs. natural rights and limited government conservatives, as well as “the fate of neoliberalism.” Listen to the full episode here.