Media Mix, Jan. 6, 2019

Here’s this week’s Media Mix about right-wing internet trolls. In the introductory paragraphs I described journalist Koichi Yasuda’s comparison of classic rightists with the newer, anonymous internet type. Yasuda tends to think that classic rightists have more integrity than internet rightists because they at least have a patriotic agenda that they understand and stick to. Classic rightists would have protested American forces in Japan, because they want Japan to beef up its own defense by itself, but internet rightists support American bases simply because they’re opposed by Okinawans and “liberals.”

Yasuda also says that classic rightists would never denigrate Koreans and other “marginal” types, mainly because they consider themselves fringe-dwellers, but that seems to be a debatable point. Counter-racism activist Yasumichi Noma, also referenced in the column and Yasuda’s discussion partner on the web program No Hate TV, had said that classic rightists tend to be bigots even if they don’t always manifest their bigotry in their speech. In truth, classic right wing organizations contained many members who were ethnic Koreans, chiefly because those organization gave them a chance to belong to something, even if it was a group that often targeted foreign elements as undermining the purity of Japanese society. (For similar reasons, ethnic Koreans can often be found in yakuza organizations) The point is that Yasuda’s theory about the difference between classic right wingers and internet rightists isn’t quite so clear cut. In the end, they both hate anyone who’s to the left of them, so they still have a lot in common.

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