Matt Kuhns Profile picture
Jun 10 15 tweets 6 min read
I have been reading various summaries & comments on the #January6thCommitteeHearings

My summary interpretation is that this is basically the values of Liz Cheney, ascendant

My reaction is to weep in despair, because those values are abhorrent 1/
Picking through what others have written about the #January6thHearings, I tried to identify what it's all about, in terms of values.

I concluded:
1) symbols
2) Dependence upon Republicans
3) Process conservatism

Before I go further into what the #January6thCommitteeHearings seem to have been concerned with, I should note what they don't seem to have been concerned with.

Outcomes. Individual rights or liberties.
Real democratic accountability.
Government of, by, for the people.

Now for what the #January6thCommittee did seem to value or be concerned with.

Symbols. Of privilege. "a sacred space in our Constitutional Republic," e.g.

They continue as they began. 4/…
Part two of what the #January6thCommittee seemed to value or be concerned with:

The Republican Party as indispensable component of the political system. WOW was this a value.

The perspective here is some real "the king can never be wrong, but can be ill-advised" shit. 5/
The perspective of the #January6thCommittee, and most people writing about it, is that the Republican Party has gone unacceptably wrong…

But all concern is with "how can we persuade Republicans to choose different conduct."

Politics without this element is unthinkable. 🤦

The uppermost value I can discern in the #January6thCommitteeHearings is, however, process conservatism.

The machinery of the system is practically deified.

I cannot emphasize enough that this value is very compatible with authoritarianism. 7/
I should add, as well, that this value system elevate process not only above e.g. human welfare, fairness, etc., but above the law.

Perfect example: Ohio will vote in 2022 on indisputably illegal maps—BUT will do so as the result of a process.
The narrative of the #January6thCommittee as a struggle between Cheney, vs Trump, is fan fiction yet accurate in a meaningful, horrible way.

When @emptywheel e.g. marvels at the Cheneys' "bureaucratic artistry," that's the value system offered as alternative to Trump.

#fml 9/
The #January6thCommittee Cheney value system of symbols, Republicans, and process, is not the solution most of you are looking for.

It will not help with rights, equality, sustainability, inclusion—and won't help indirectly by "saving democracy" either.

The value system at the center of the #January6thHearings is completely compatible with tyranny. Tyranny can operate through process.

Gerrymandered legislatures and unaccountable courts can harm you again and again and that isn't even recognized as a problem. 11/
Pretty much. We have a rotten, toxic system, which does not serve the common good.

Trump's response is "exploit the rottenness to exploit people."

Cheney's response is "defend the system to exploit people."

Liberalism, humanism, meanwhile… 🤷
I should address also the "pragmatism" hope, i.e. that if (a big if) Cheney hurts the Republican Party enough at the polls, who cares about abstractions.

Well, I do, because saving a completely hollow, clueless liberalism for two years achieves… what? No idea. 13/
The #January6thCommitteeHearings are, in the fundamental and important values they promote, not only wrong but genuinely dangerous.

Yet muddle and misdirection convince so many people, whose own values are being buried, to cheer.

😭 14/14
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