MSNBC Panel Insults Young Conservatives as Fox-Addled Office Spankers

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After previously singing the praises of young peopleMSNBC Live host Stephanie Ruhle found a group of young people who really just need get over their political beliefs. That group was, of course, young conservatives and Republicans. Ruhle's panel -- Harvard polling guru John Della Volpe, longtime Time humorist and In Defense of Elitism author Joel Stein, and Charlie Sykes of The Bulwark -- naturally agreed.

It all began when Della Volpe gave his insights on what motivates young Republicans. It started out innocent enough, "Rather than fighting an economic war on inequality they're choosing to fight a cultural war. When I asked young people what is great about America, what makes them optimistic, they talk about our civil liberties and not losing those to what they consider to be far-left extremist Democratic candidates."

 

 

 

 

Anyone who has been around young conservatives would know this to be true given various threats to free speech, freedom of religion, the Second Amendment, as well as concerns about due process that date back to the Department of Education's 2014 "Dear Colleague" letter. Unfortunately, Della Volpe did not talk about any of that, instead of blaming left-wing politicians and university administrators, he went after Fox News, "These young people I'm talking to today, they're not the children of 9/11 but the children of Fox News."

Ruhle also did not want to talk about concerns over civil liberties, instead choosing to say that what this is really about, is a bunch of white males who don't want to lose their privilege, "But, Charles are we going to launch a culture war over a Fox News false narrative? The truth is, the world is still being run and dominated by white guys. And your son isn't going to not get into college because of a diversity candidate and your son isn't going to find himself in a legal quagmire if he asks the wrong girl out on a date. This is a false narrative that's going to cause a culture war, give me a break." 

Sykes agreed, "Yes, it is a false narrative," but then went onto talk about Ronald Reagan's famous "Are you better off than you were four years ago" before wondering "Is America going to be more prosperous, more inclusive, you know 20 years from now, ten years from now than it has been in the past and I'm not sure that's what they're getting. What I get is this real sense of anxiety, the real sense of cultural dislocation, and I think that's going to be a big dynamic."

If you think that the guy who wrote a book entitled In Defense of Elitism would have a pretentious take on young conservatives, you would be correct. Coming out of left field, Stein asserted, "The things men did ten years ago that were horrifying. they got away with. They don't anymore. That's a radical change. People, there are a lot of straight guys in this country really angry about that." Ruhle agreed, inexplicably telling young conservatives, "I'm so sorry they can't spank a female's butt at work but giving up privilege doesn't mean you’re going to lose an opportunity. It means recognize your privilege and build a bigger table" as if that is what people meant when they told Della Volpe about their concerns surrounding civil liberties.

Young conservatives want to behave like....Matt Lauer? Shouldn't MSNBC be a little less shameless about who the predators are?

Sykes then jumped in with at least some semblance of common sense. "People in Wisconsin do not feel privileged. Just keep that in mind."

Della Volpe than accused young Republicans of not thinking about the issues of the day and wondered how it is possible for a young, debt-straddled person to not vote Democrat:

I think that the young Republicans I talk to are not thinking through all these issues, right? They are finding the avatar which is Trump and using kind of their own local circumstances to move into that, into essentially that bucket, right. They're concerned about losing their guns to far-left communists. That's the way in which they describe the Democratic candidates. 

I said you have $100,000 in debt. Every single Democrat candidate has a different plan to relieve you of that debt so you can invest it in a home, your family, vacation, whatever you want to do, they don't believe it. They don't want to hear it. 

Sensing that the segment had gone off the rails, Sykes then tried to inform his fellow panelists that if they want to beat Trump in 2020, they are going to have to do better than this segment. "Wisconsinites these are the salt of the Earth. They're not sitting around saying I'm going to vote for Donald Trump because I can't spank a woman anymore. What they want is, they want to be sure that their values are at least respected and I think that when you talk to them in that particular way."

After pouring gasoline on the fire with her spanking remarks, Ruhle concluded the segment by hoping we could all get along, "Well then if we can be more neighborly and respectful and listen to everyone around us maybe we could progress."

Here is a transcript for the October 24 show:

MSNBC

MSNBC Live with Stephanie Ruhle

9:51 AM ET

JOHN DELLA VOLPE: The reaction on the right, among young people, now there are far fewer young Republicans than young Democrats, but the young Republicans I spoke to, they are fired up and rather than fighting an economic war on inequality they're choosing to fight a cultural war. When I asked young people what is great about America, what makes them optimistic, they talk about our civil liberties and not losing those to what they consider to be far-left extremist Democratic candidates. These young people I'm talking to today, they're not the children of 9/11 but the children of Fox News. Their first political impression, when I asked them almost to a person, was seeing their parents' upset during the 2008 election. Mom was really excited Obama won and the dad was pouting the rest of the weekend. So, this is the era, again it’s a small portion but about a third or so of the youth electorate and it's a culture war that’s going back. 

STEPHANIE RUHLE: But, Charles are we really going to launch a culture war over a Fox News false narrative? The truth is, the world is still being run and dominated by white guys. And your son isn't going to not get into college because of a diversity candidate and he's not gonna be -- your son isn't going to find himself in a legal quagmire if he asks the wrong girl out on a date. This is a false narrative that's really gonna cause a culture war? Give me a break. 

CHARLIE SYKES: Yes, it is a false narrative, but we are in a culture war. That is exactly right. A lot of these issues are part of this cultural narrative. And I think that we need to recognize that and how that plays out. And Donald Trump does play to that anxiety, which is, you know, who loves America, who wants to destroy America, who loves God, who hates God. You started off this segment playing that cut from Ronald Reagan in 1980, are you better off than you were four years ago. I remember what the mood was in the late 1970s. It was this sense of anxiety this lack of faith and confidence in the future, all of that uncertainty. I think that's what you're picking up, a lot of young people right now, will they be better off than their parents. What does the future hold? Is America going to be more prosperous, more inclusive, you know 20 years from now, ten years from now than it has been in the past and I'm not sure that's what they're getting. What I get is this real sense of anxiety, the real sense of cultural dislocation, and I think that's going to be a big dynamic. You know, in 1980 it was were you better on than you were four years ago. Next year, can you take four more years of this? 

JOEL STEIN: We're in a cultural war. The things men did ten years ago that were horrifying. they got away with. They don't anymore. That's a radical change. People, there are a lot of straight guys in this country really angry about that. 

RUHLE: I'm so sorry they can't spank a female's butt at work but giving up privilege doesn't mean you’re going to lose an opportunity. It means recognize your privilege and build a bigger table. 

STEIN: People don't love to hear that they should recognize their privilege but that's just not -- I wouldn't run with that campaign. 

DELLA VOLPE: I think that—

SYKES: People in Wisconsin do not feel privileged. Just keep that in mind. 

DELLA VOLPE: Right, right 

STEIN: Even if they are. They're slightly less privileged than they are before and that's enough to infuriate them -- 

DELLA VOLPE: I think that the young Republicans I talk to are not thinking through all these issues, right? They are finding the avatar which is Trump and using kind of their own local circumstances to move into that, into essentially that bucket, right. They're concerned about losing 
their guns to far left communists. That's the way in which they describe the Democratic candidates. I said you have $100,000 in debt. Every single Democrat candidate has a different plan to relieve you of that debt so you can invest it in a home, your family, vacation, whatever you want to do, they don't believe it. They don't want to hear it. 

RUHLE: Charlie, you bring up a good people, point don't feel privileged, I completely under that, but going back to a cultural situation from years ago, isn't going to make those people's schools better or their job opportunities better.

SYKES: No, I get that point, but again, when we talk about a culture war what they feel, they don't feel privileged, they feel despised and they feel ignored and look, I'm not carrying water for them but I do think that at some point this is what we have to do, you have to listen to what they are saying and, you know, Wisconsinites these are the salt of the Earth. They're not sitting around saying I'm going to vote for Donald Trump because I can't spank a woman anymore. What they want is, they want to be sure that their values are at least respected and I think that when you talk to them in that particular way, you can say look, you know, do you really want to support Donald Trump because you're fundamentally fair and decent people and I think that's an important message. 

RUHLE: Well then if we can be more neighborly and respectful and listen to everyone around us maybe we could progress. Thank you all so much. Really important conversation. 

 

 
NB Daily Political Groups Conservatives & Republicans MSNBC MSNBC Live Video Stephanie Ruhle Joel Stein Charlie Sykes

 

 
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