7 votes

'Bernie bros' and the debate about how to deal with the "dirtbag left" explained

16 comments

  1. [5]
    vord
    (edited )
    Link
    I mean, yes the idiots like that do exist. Right wing idiots like that is how we got Trump in the first place. But every Bernie supporter I know was also pro-Warren, and rabidly so. It would be...

    I mean, yes the idiots like that do exist. Right wing idiots like that is how we got Trump in the first place.

    But every Bernie supporter I know was also pro-Warren, and rabidly so. It would be equally likely that they were Russian operatives trying to sow discord.

    I consider this dirtbag left to be as much trolls as the crowd that memed for Trump. Despite a loud online presence, they are merely an annoying minority.

    They hurt Bernie's image, anf I'm pretty sure that's the real intent.

    13 votes
    1. [4]
      Velrei
      (edited )
      Link Parent
      I wish I could believe that still, but on places like reddit's /r/breadtube it's almost nothing but hate for the woman. Honestly, I've pulled away from left-wing spaces due to the bernie bro shit,...

      I wish I could believe that still, but on places like reddit's /r/breadtube it's almost nothing but hate for the woman.

      Honestly, I've pulled away from left-wing spaces due to the bernie bro shit, and I was a Sanders supporter in both 2016 and 2020 (with Warren as second).

      Edit: Grammar

      7 votes
      1. [3]
        determinism
        Link Parent
        Are you serious?

        I wish I could believe that still, but on places like reddit's /r/breadtube it's almost nothing but hate for the woman.

        Are you serious?

        9 votes
        1. [2]
          Velrei
          Link Parent
          Yeah, I'm referring to specific leftwing spaces that constantly vilify her. I've literally been leaving left-wing spaces over being sick of constantly ridiculous misinformation. And I'm a Sanders...

          Yeah, I'm referring to specific leftwing spaces that constantly vilify her. I've literally been leaving left-wing spaces over being sick of constantly ridiculous misinformation.

          And I'm a Sanders supporter who thinks there is stuff to be critical about on both Sanders and Warren.

          1. determinism
            Link Parent
            Mostly interested in the misogyny on /r/breadtube. I don't remember seeing anything remotely like that but I don't subscribe to it anymore.

            Mostly interested in the misogyny on /r/breadtube. I don't remember seeing anything remotely like that but I don't subscribe to it anymore.

            1 vote
  2. [3]
    moocow1452
    Link
    I kind of have the same feeling I did with Gamergate and people who genuinely cared about video game journalism ethics in that there are people genuinely interested about detangling enthusiast...

    I kind of have the same feeling I did with Gamergate and people who genuinely cared about video game journalism ethics in that there are people genuinely interested about detangling enthusiast entertainment press from big publisher interests, but also a ton of misogynists looking for an opportunity to fling poop everywhere and convince themselves it's for great justice. The ratio of supporters to attack dogs for Bernie is probably better than Gamergate ever was, but there's still that same smell in the air.

    12 votes
    1. [2]
      hoytschermerhorn
      Link Parent
      This summarizes my thoughts exactly. The one feeling (paranoia?) I can't shake though: How much of this furor is stroked by state-sponsored propaganda (both domestic & abroad)? At this point, I've...

      This summarizes my thoughts exactly. The one feeling (paranoia?) I can't shake though: How much of this furor is stroked by state-sponsored propaganda (both domestic & abroad)? At this point, I've pulled back from a lot of liberal social media & meme communities simply because I don't know what / who to trust anymore. And if I'm completely honest? Aside from some lost chuckles, I don't think I'm missing much.

      8 votes
      1. moocow1452
        Link Parent
        I've been around Poe's Law too long to even try to figure out who is a foreign agitator because I know that there are enough true believers out there who would throw themselves into traffic for...

        I've been around Poe's Law too long to even try to figure out who is a foreign agitator because I know that there are enough true believers out there who would throw themselves into traffic for their cause that Russian interference would only get in their way.

        2 votes
  3. [6]
    onyxleopard
    Link
    I strongly suspect that the dirtbag left movement is in large part encouraged and amplified by Russia’s Internet Research Agency (IRA). There may be legitimate leftist ideology backing some of the...

    I strongly suspect that the dirtbag left movement is in large part encouraged and amplified by Russia’s Internet Research Agency (IRA). There may be legitimate leftist ideology backing some of the members of this group, but I think they are being marshaled by Russian influencers just as the alt right was and continues to be. The rhetoric and methodologies of the dirtbag left resemble that of the Gamergate movement and 8Chan: flagrant misogyny, personal attacks, doxxing, and ironic use of vulgarity.

    In writing this comment, I’ve been briefly trying to research analysis connecting Gamergate directly to Russia, but the search results I get are so polluted with bullshit and misinformation, and I’m not finding anything authoritative. E.g., this NBC piece says:

    2014 was “a dry run” in which Russia mapped the social media landscape and saw how it could be manipulated.

    But, it’s totally unclear to me where that "dry run" quote comes from. I can’t find who the source is here.

    Like the NBC piece, many sources trying to connect Russia and Gamergate cite FBI agent Clint Watts, who gave congressional testimony in 2016 about Russian influence campaigns and interference in democratic countries around the world. But, his prepared statement, and his testimony don’t call out Gamergate by name.

    The Mueller Report describes Russia’s IRA influence campaigns and their "information warfare", but that commentary is (understandably) related to the 2016 presidential election.

    9 votes
    1. [5]
      guywithhair
      Link Parent
      My immediate thought when I see mention of notably toxic supporters for anything political these days is that's it likely consists of a substantial number of trolls, particularly Russian. Seems...

      My immediate thought when I see mention of notably toxic supporters for anything political these days is that's it likely consists of a substantial number of trolls, particularly Russian. Seems that Russian trolls have written the book on creating a vocal minority to shift the overall perception of various demographics or groups. There's no reason this would be centered on one side of the aisle -- people on the left were just quicker to accept the fact that Russia had its hands where they shouldn't be.

      I feel like people should take internet comments less seriously. It baffles me that cable news frequently involves reading tweets and talking about internet outrage. Surely that's one of the many rules of the internet that "someone is always outraged", like Poe's Law, right?

      6 votes
      1. [2]
        onyxleopard
        Link Parent
        I think it’s more subtle than that. There are the provocateurs who are being outrageous, but also concern trolls feigning outrage. I agree that Russia is playing all sides of all threads that...

        Surely that's one of the many rules of the internet that "someone is always outraged", like Poe's Law, right?

        I think it’s more subtle than that. There are the provocateurs who are being outrageous, but also concern trolls feigning outrage. I agree that Russia is playing all sides of all threads that expose cracks in democratic social order.

        2 votes
        1. guywithhair
          Link Parent
          Right, and I think I wasn't articulating well enough; I think the provocateurs are probably the main vehicle of all this, and that there are probably very few people who genuinely are that...

          Right, and I think I wasn't articulating well enough; I think the provocateurs are probably the main vehicle of all this, and that there are probably very few people who genuinely are that outraged. I like that you point out that there are two groups (provocateurs and trolls) that fan the flames. I have a feeling that dynamics between those two loosely coordinated groups has probably perpetuated this. Both groups are acting maliciously, it's just that one is for shits & gigs and the other is information warfare.

          Both are problematic. I would say that trolls are probably the easier to spot, because they're in it for the absurdity. Anyone who's looking at people's opinions online should try to be aware that there's no way to determine authenticity.

          4 votes
      2. [2]
        Loire
        Link Parent
        The problem is that the tropes and ideas used by CTH and the like are starting to seep into rank and file internet chat. A minority they may be but they are still spreading their culture dare I...

        The problem is that the tropes and ideas used by CTH and the like are starting to seep into rank and file internet chat. A minority they may be but they are still spreading their culture dare I say, virulently. My feels aren't easily hurt, or whatever excuse they use to wave away pushback, but it does make discussion difficult.

        1 vote
        1. guywithhair
          Link Parent
          Right, and it isn't always easy to spot. I'm curious how many people in the world are actively making comments in internet forums solely for the purpose of subtly soliciting products or ideas....

          Right, and it isn't always easy to spot. I'm curious how many people in the world are actively making comments in internet forums solely for the purpose of subtly soliciting products or ideas. It's a bit scary to think about how easily people can be influenced through the Internet, given that they're reading comments or chatting with people whose intentions they have no way of gauging.

          2 votes
  4. [2]
    Kuromantis
    Link
    Another related article: Elizabeth Warren's exit interview is a warning for the dirtbag left [...] [...]

    Another related article: Elizabeth Warren's exit interview is a warning for the dirtbag left

    When Sen. Elizabeth Warren dropped out of the presidential race, she was expecter to endorse her longtime ally Bernie Sanders for president. Yet she didn’t — and one reason, judging by her Thursday exit interview with Rachel Maddow, is anger at the way some of Bernie’s online supporters have behaved.

    [...]

    The behavior in question ranges from angry Sanders fans tweeting snake emojis at Warren accusing her of being an anti-Sanders backstabber to online harassment of (generally female) Warren supporters. There have also been accusations that possible Sanders supporters published the home addresses and phone numbers of two women who worked for the Nevada Culinary Union after it produced a fact sheet critical of Sanders’s health care plan.

    [...]

    One purported culprit, though certainly not the only one, are the antics of the “Bernie Bros.”

    But the media’s obsessive focus on Bernie Bros — a term coined in 2016 to describe privileged white male Sanders supporters that doesn’t accurately describe his 2020 base — has obscured the real nature of the problem: a particular subculture among some Sanders fans that flourishes primarily on Twitter.

    This group has coalesced around a loose group of left-wing media outlets that call themselves the dirtbag left, most notably the podcast Chapo Trap House. The dirtbag left promotes vulgar online attacks as a means of promoting left-wing politics, often through crass jokes in podcast episodes and on Twitter. (A recent Chapo episode involved hosts joking that Warren would have pretended to be Arab to join with the Flight 93 9/11 hijackers, making a crass sexual comment about Warren-sympathetic New York Times columnist Michelle Goldberg, and a proffering a jokey, false theory that “Big Vaccine” and/or Bill Gates made up the coronavirus.)

    And while it’s true the media can overreact to this kind of taunting, it really does seem to be hurting Sanders’s efforts to expand his coalition beyond his hardcore base.

    3 votes
    1. determinism
      Link Parent
      ... Two candidates meaningfully supported medicare for all (arguably just one). Anyone who opposes medicare for all in this country is a ghoul.

      Some online Sanders supporters have dismissed this attitude as childish: that Warren and other progressives are letting their hurt feelings get in the way of their own political goals. What matters more, they ask rhetorically — your mentions or universal health care? Are you really concerned about mean comments, they ask, or just playing into a smear campaign led by moderates?

      ...

      This response, in the mind of Sanders’s critics, is in some ways the problem. The dirtbag left sees the race in such starkly moral terms — either you support Bernie or you want poor people to get sick and die — that they’re willing to countenance abusive tactics in order to get people on board. They don’t understand how anyone could disagree with Sanders in good faith, or how treating someone viciously might be counterproductive to the cause they profess to care about.

      Two candidates meaningfully supported medicare for all (arguably just one). Anyone who opposes medicare for all in this country is a ghoul.

      5 votes