At Berkeley and other universities, protesters have held up signs saying “F--k Free Speech” and have threatened to beat up anyone taking their pictures, including journalists. They seem blissfully ignorant of the contradiction in using fascistic tactics as anti-fascist protesters. After all, a leading definition of fascism is “a tendency toward or actual exercise of strong autocratic or dictatorial control.”
If there is a 'contradiction' involved here it is not logical but practical/pragmatic. In the terminology of the preceding entry, it is not an instance of logical inconsistency, but of inconsistency in the application of a principle or standard. If the principle is "It is wrong to employ fascist tactics," then the practical contradiction consists in the Antifa thugs' application of the principle to their enemies but not to themselves.
But then it dawned on me (thanks to some comments by Malcolm Pollack and 'Jacques' who cannot go by his real name because of the leftist thugs in the academic world) that there is no practical/pragmatic contradiction or double standard here. The Antifa thugs and their ilk operate with a single standard: do whatever it takes to win.
They don't give a rat's ass about consistency of any kind or the related 'bourgeois' values that we conservatives cherish such a truth. These values are nothing but bourgeois ideology the function of which is to legitimate the 'oppressive' institutional structures that the Marxist punks battle against.
When Turley says that the thugs "seem blissfully ignorant of the contradiction" he assumes that they accept the principle but have somehow failed to realize that they are applying it inconsistently. But that is not what is going on here. They don't accept the principle! They have nothing against fascist tactics if they can be employed as means to their destructive ends. But if the political authorities arrest them and punish them, as they must to maintain civil order, then they scream Fascism! and dishonestly invoke the principle.
Besides, they don't accept the meta-principle that one ought to be consistent in the application of principles.
It is a mistake to think that one can reach these people by appealing to some values we all supposedly share. "Don't you see, you are doing the very thing you protest against!" You can't reach these evil-doers in this way. You reach them by enforcing the law. At some point you have to start breaking heads. But that is not 'fascism,' it is law enforcement.
If the authorities abdicate, if the police stand idly by while crimes against persons and property are committed, then you invite a vigilante response. Is that what you want?
The "Fuck Free Speech" signs make it clear that the Antifa thugs do not value what we value. And because they do not share this classically liberal value, it is a mistake to say that they operate with a double standard: Free speech for me, but not for thee. They don't value free speech at all; what they value is winning by any means. If there are times and places where upholding free speech is a means to their ends, then they uphold it. But at times and in places where shutting down free speech is instrumentally useful, then they will shut it down.
It is right out of the Commie playbook. And just as a Nazi is not the cure for a Commie, a Commie is not the cure for a Nazi. The cure for both is an American steeped in American values.