Until Thursday, Will Wilkinson was vice president of the Niskanen Center, a think tank originally created to put a libertarian gloss on global warming interventionism (today it is a holding pen for ex-libertarians who have decided to become full-time embarrassments instead.)
Now, Wilkinson is out of a job, the latest victim of the cancel culture pandemic, thanks to a poorly-received “joke” about Vice President Mike Pence.
Less than 18 hours after his tweet, Wilkinson was fired by Niskanen, which released the standard pathetic statement that has become the norm from organizations in response to any sort of controversy.
Nobody should shed a single tear for Mr. Wilkinson. His firing is a richly-deserved humiliation after years of cheering on every instance of cancel culture that he could.
Naturally, Wilkinson wasn’t fired for suggesting the execution of an American vice president. Instead, like so many clueless aging leftists, Wilkinson failed to keep up with rapidly-shifting linguistic norms. Had he merely proposed shooting Pence, he would almost certainly still be employed today. Wilkinson, you see, suggested lynching Pence, and as part of America’s so-called “racial reckoning” the word “lynch” has acquired mystical overtones, with mostly-white liberals decreeing that its mere use is offensive to American blacks, even though lynching has existed for thousands of years and all races have been lynching victims in American history.
For years, Wilkinson, as a bogus “libertarian,” was there to celebrate when people lost their jobs for honestly voicing unpopular opinions. In 2017 he went on a lengthy Twitter rant explaining why Google was right to fire James Damore for his internal presentation criticizing the company’s diversity initiatives.
That Google memo was almost perfectly crafted to out people who don’t grok social-forces explanations of inequality.
If you think memo is state-of-art reasonableness about unequal gender representation, it’s hard to see it as morale-killing shit-stirring.
“Patriarchy” wasn’t made up by PC cultural warriors. It’s a historical fact, & better validated empirically than science of sex difference. …
Lots of us are traumatized from the destabilizing *start* of our culture’s move away from patriarchy. Can’t be *over* if we’re still alive.
The Google memo’s blithe indifference to recent history & cultural context of “findings” about sex difference is thus very shady.
But it doesn’t look shady to those who, for whatever reason, can’t acknowledge established empirical facts about our history and culture.
Which is why they don’t think it looks benighted and silly to stand up for it on principled free speech grounds.
For my part, I think the dude was way out of his lane, and I would have canned him in a second for hurting team morale and the company’s PR.
Years before that, Wilkinson was in the mob cheering on the destruction of Jason Richwine, who resigned from the Heritage Foundation in 2013 after The Washington Post publicized his thesis, where he discussed the policy implications of IQ differences between different countries.
Despite his own role in the perpetuation of cancel culture, Wilkinson sneered obnoxiously at the very idea it existed.
— anosognosic (@anosognosically) January 22, 2021
Many devoted proponents of free speech, like Glenn Greenwald, are lamenting Wilkinson’s fate:
The Moronic Firing of Will Wilkinson Illustrates Why Fear and Bad Faith Mob Demands Reign Supremehttps://t.co/dXlp4RPa6d
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) January 22, 2021
Greenwald’s desire to be a committed defender of free expression and goodwill is admirable. But there’s no need for his charity in this case. It’s hard to think of a more worthy victim of America’s modern moral panic. Wilkinson is a type, easy to find in Washington and on Twitter, who was always ready to explain how fair and reasonable it was to crush ordinary people for insufficient loyalty to official ideology. He is a fraud, posing as an original thinker but happy to smash anybody with an actually original thought. He reaped what he sowed and in a case of cosmic justice got what he deserved.
Sadly, Wilkinson is such a reliable mouthpiece for the American oligarchy that he will probably be rehabilitated and handed a new job soon enough. His survival will be used as proof that the American regime is justly able to distinguish real evildoers (i.e. conservatives and patriots) from the wrongly accused.
But at least we can still enjoy his moment of humiliation while it lasts.