Proud to be that twit’s enemy

My favorite part is when JD Vance announces “The professors are the enemy,” and then smiles smugly and pauses to let the applause roll in.

He’s trying argue that National Conservatism needs “wisdom”. I’d love to know how he defines that word, because as he uses it it seems to be synonymous with “ignorance”. A society that belittles learning and knowledge is doomed.

Also, JD Vance is a colossal, gaping asshole.


  1. kenbakermn says

    He’s not wrong, he just neglected to say whose enemy. Is he saying professors are the enemy of ignoramuses like him? Well, I guess he gets to choose his own enemies. It does not of course imply that professors consider him to be their enemy.

  2. says

    When are we going to stop demonising assholes?
    Assholes serve an important function and can be a lot of fun to play with.
    Neither of those things is true of JD Vance.

  3. raven says

    This idiot is wrong anyway.

    The real enemy of fundie xians and the GOP is…reality itself, the real world.

    To take just one current example, despite countless Facebook memes, the Covid-19 virus is still real, a serious health problem, and the vaccines still work and work well.
    The proof is tens of thousands of them voluntarily dying in the hospitals, unvaccinated, from the virus.
    While vaccinated people like us drink our morning coffee and spend a few minutes on the internet.

    Reality doesn’t care what they think or believe.

  4. R. L. Foster says

    I thought that sounded familiar.
    “Never forget, the press is the enemy, the press is the enemy. The establishment is the enemy, the professors are the enemy, the professors are the enemy. Write that on a blackboard 100 times.”
    — Nixon to national security advisers Henry Kissinger and Alexander Haig in a conversation on December 14 1972.

  5. wzrd1 says

    Such wonderful pronouncements, straight out of Orwell. So, what is next, the next great Red Scare Commie Hunt?

  6. nomaduk says

    The similarity between National Conservatism and National Socialism is just a bit too on the nose for coincidence. On the plus side, we can use the same abbreviation.

  7. Allison says

    What is now called “conservatism” is nearly the opposite of what was called “conservatism” back when I was young (50+ years ago.) Not that old-style conservatism was all that nice, but it was at least in favor of stability and following known rules, however unfair those rules might be. Modern “conservatism” seems to be about eliminating any and all restraints on predatory, destructive, and antisocial behavior.

  8. Akira MacKenzie says

    At the rate the Democrats are going, I suggest you make an escape plan, because once the Republicans get back into power, they will want revenge for losing in 2020 and they are going to take it out on all the groups they’ve vilified over the decades; academics being one of them.

  9. whywhywhy says

    Also, JD Vance is a colossal, gaping asshole.

    I believe this is why Peter Thiel is funding him…

    The bigger problem is that all but one of the candidates running for the Republican nomination for the Ohio Senate seat are just as bad. The one exception gets booed by the Republican base.

  10. birgerjohansson says

    They are useful assholes.
    Joe Manchin is a useful asshole. That is why corporations are investing what to them amounts to coffee money to get him re-elected.
    The problem is not blatantly evil people, the problem are the ignorant/stupid/ self-serving people who would help zombie Adolph Hitler buy Zyklon-B if they get a cut of the money or a slice of power.
    I see the German-American Thiel is worth 7 billion, so the few million $$$ he invests in Thiel make no difference to him.
    In fact, if Thiel were to go back to his ancestral home, he would be disgusted to find Germany no longer allows big corporations or billionaires to so blatantly support political candidates … for obvious historical reasons.
    NSDAP could not have gotten off to such a rapid upswing without support from Krupp and Thyssen.
    You will notice neither Biden or Pelosi is calling out the corrupt senators because they know what happens in every other populist-challenged country can never happen in USA.

  11. petesh says

    @1: Is he saying professors are the enemy of ignoramuses like him?

    No, he’s just lying. Per the fount of all knowledge:

    “After graduating from Ohio State, Vance received a Juris Doctor from Yale Law School. During his first year at Yale Law, his mentor and professor Amy Chua convinced him to write his memoir.”

  12. birgerjohansson says

    France has introduced a law to protect small, independent bookstores from being crushed by big, online chains like Amazon. Thus it is called the “anti-Amazon law”.
    Surely US congressmen will hurry to introduce a similar law to protect infependent bookstores…
    …(sound of crickets).

  13. PaulBC says

    What I find most annoying about Vance, having read Hillbilly Elegy a few years back (library copy) is that in his closing comments, written when Obama was president and Hillary Clinton looked likely to be next, it was clear that he was trying to ingratiate himself with what he perceived as the liberal establishment. Even then it struck me as cloying and insincere when he went all sensitive about changes in American culture.

    Now he sees the rightwing as ascendant and is reverting back to his real identity (with a palpably sincere sense of relief). There was nothing very special about him to begin with. He’s one of Amy Chua’s puffed up coterie of Yale graduates. He does not have any unique insights, but he managed to pull a fast one on the NPR set who all want to pat themselves on the back for their understanding of how those other people live who they’ll never actually meet. It also helped his sales that liberals like myself were grasping at any straw to comprehend how Trump managed to become president.

  14. Dennis K says

    @9: Pretty much everyone not a fascist larper will be in that group. And I doubt Canada will open its arms to millions of refugees—not to mention Trump’s border guards putting the kibosh to any attempted exodus. Gotta have meat for the grinder.

    Few Americans today have any idea the shit coming down the pipe.

  15. PaulBC says

    And if professors are his enemy, does he want to disavow his fancy Ivy League degrees and go back to his roots? I’m not saying he has to pump gas. He could buy a small farm or even a car dealership and live like local royalty.

    I am guessing not, though I am not even sure what he “does” now. Author? Lawyer? Venture capitalist? All over the map it seems. And what exactly is his “value add” as they say around here? I am pretty sure his success depended on recommendations from multiple professors, and not just his academic “tiger mom” Chua.

  16. Nemo says

    @birgerjohansson #11:

    You will notice neither Biden or Pelosi is calling out the corrupt senators because they know what happens in every other populist-challenged country can never happen in USA.

    They’re not calling them out because they need their votes. If Manchin and Sinema didn’t vote with the Democratic party, the Senate would flip to the Republicans. If they were somehow expelled from the Senate, the Republican governors of their respective states would appoint Republicans to replace them. The only way to effectively get them out of the way is to elect more Democratic senators at the next election, a year away; or, to primary them, which is further years away still, if it would even happen.

  17. Frederic Bourgault-Christie says

    But remember, folks, only the left are divisive, only the left sort people by identity rather than individual character, only the left “cancel”, and only the left seek to silence debate and differing perspectives.

  18. birgerjohansson says

    Vance is not yet ready to go the whole way and say “enemy of the people”. That will come later.
    Next up: the threat posted by “cosmopolitans” (coughJewscough).

  19. robro says

    Akira MacKenzie @ #9 — Got any recommendations on where to escape to? As far as I can tell emigrating from the US to a reasonably sane part of the world is no simple task unless you want to shift about every three to six months. And besides, if these Christo-fascists manage to take over the US and exact revenge on their perceived enemies, what prevents them from going after their enemies in other parts of the world.

  20. robro says

    I’ve been thinking about the kind of “mass psychosis”…I’m not sure what to call it…we seem to be experiencing. It’s not just in the US but everywhere people seem to be going nuts and trying to recreate some past state that they imagine as better. Frankly, this is all very scary.

  21. Waydude says

    Jeebus these guys are really going all in on the whole Nazi/socialism/MaoChina/Polpot naming the educated as the enemy of the people. I don’t understand why they act so offended at being called Nazis, they obviously do all their learning from them

  22. PaulBC says


    It’s not just in the US but everywhere people seem to be going nuts and trying to recreate some past state that they imagine as better.

    Definitely, though not everyone wants to go backwards. I am also very confident that nobody is ever going to send us culturally back to the 50s or whatever they think is the golden age. They may still succeed in making life miserable for everyone. This has been bothering more and more. As recently as 2016, I had kind of a cocky attitude about the whole thing. People a lot younger than I am were creating a new culture, I though, and a lot corporate money was chasing them. I no longer feel this way. I just think it’s hopeless. There are people who hate the world I want to live in. I’m not even sure they have an alternative to it, just a plan to screw up everything I was counting on.

  23. Dennis K says

    @23 – My own trumper Father fancies himself a WWII buff without a clue he’s fist-bumping the wrong side. History use to be a thing.

  24. Akira MacKenzie says

    @ 21

    It doesn’t matter anyway. We’re all destined for the firing squad once the Republicans obtain power.

  25. birgerjohansson says

    Blaming the educated.
    If you are into SF, I recommend reading “Hard To Be A God” by Strugatsky.

  26. robro says

    PaulBC @ #24 — I know what you mean. Two years ago I was hoping to retire, but then COVID happened and Dumpster et al screwed us. Now at 73 I’m still hoping to retire, relax, play music, travel with my partner…but now I worry that it’s all about to go up in flames.

    Akira MacKenzie @ #26 — Encouraging. If that’s all there is…then let’s keep dancing. Let’s break out the booze and have a ball if that’s all there is.

  27. canadiansteve says

    Of course it’s multi-faceted, but one of the biggest reasons I perceive is the proliferation of for-profit news, first through TV and later through internet services, and then social media. When profit became the ascendant goal of the information ecosystem (broadcasters have always sought profit, but it was at one time balanced against other priorities) this set the foundation on which networks have to compete for viewers (and now compete with online services) and to maintain viewership offer ever more extreme content. This process accelerated as lobbyists managed to remove regulation and the internet cut into profits for broadcasters. Algorithms in social media have amplified the effect many times over and deliberately keep people away from other points of view -keeping them happily clicking on things that shock and demand attention- pushing them towards radicalization as opposed to moderation. (as exposed by FB’s own research) Finally, the appearance of deliberate misinformation schemes to further confuse and radicalize (and which FB protects because they are profitable) and a disappointingly high percentage of people that rely on social media for information/news and now we shouldn’t be surprised that a large number of people can’t discern reality from “Fake news”

  28. birgerjohansson says

    Good news: the European Union as well as Australia are not as obseqious towards the big online corporations.
    This may not immediately help USA but it shows it is possible to fight back.

  29. unclefrogy says

    well I could post a link to “i don’t worry about a thing ” by Mose Alison like I have done before but I wont this time.
    From history it looks like these kinds of people and their reactionary ideas always end in failure, sometimes spectacularly with the complete collapse of a civilization. Reality does not gave a “F” about the outcome anyone desires.
    sure the “conservatives” could regain power and try to control things to get their favored and believed inevitable outcome to come to pass but if it does not bend to reality it will end like all the rest a crap fest and decline for everyone.
    The planet and the nature of reality, the systems of feed backs of air and water will force changes. If the pandemic we have been dealing with currently has any insight to offer it is again the same one given time and time again, “We Are Not In Control!”
    If you do not bend to it, it will break you.

  30. Stuart Smith says

    When most people use the term ‘wisdom’, it refers to an intentionally nebulous concept that is separated from both knowledge and reasoning ability, disconnected from speed of thought or mental agility, but rather represents the greatest of all virtues – reaching, usually by highly circuitous means, the same conclusions as the person attributing wisdom.

    When philosophers say ‘wisdom’, they mean arguing.