These people are not revolutionaries. They are not patriots. This was a group of individuals organized on the Internet who rampaged through the Capitol to take photographs of themselves in costume. They have no real politics, no real political principles; they are self-interested individuals who mirror the narcissism of Trump and the vanity of social media culture which rewards stupidity with likes. This is evidenced by what they did once they got inside the building. They were not there to “take over.” They broke into Nancy Pelosi’s office and posed for photographs with her paper mail. They were there to take selfies, to triumph in being able to say, “Look what I did!”
The breakdown of class society, the loss of class mobility, the loss of faith in government, the distrust of experts, the ideology of racism preceded Trump’s presidency. In The Origins of Totalitarianism, Hannah Arendt talks about the alliance between the mob and the elite. Yesterday we saw Donald Trump speak at a rally and incite an insurrection, activating a mob he created. But, as Arendt pointed out, the mob doesn’t magically manifest overnight. The seeds of discontent were sewn long before Trump ever ran for President.
This woman was maced inside the Capitol. She told me, "It's a revolution!" pic.twitter.com/hMKYSzrkue— Hunter Walker (@hunterw) January 6, 2021