Being a based conservative in a hostile environment

I think one highly neglected area among even the Based conservatives is how to influence existing institutions and environments where you are outnumbered. Our leftists enemies do this all the time.

We tend to have the mindset that we can’t be involved in the main institutions so we need to just build new ones parallel to the mainstream. These are subjected to the low success rates inherent in any new venture, then when you actually are successful the big players can either directly try to squash you, or the exit strategy ends up getting you compromised (for example, becoming publicly traded).

I think there are a TON of strategies that are actually much more anti-fragile where it benefits you to be the little guy and the minority, but it involves thinking like an activist, which conservatives are not used to doing. Once you think like an activist, you will begin to see how ripe the opportunities are for your influence.

When you are the little guy, and you are in the minority, it actually insulates your from a great deal of risk. You have much less attack surface than they do. That company has to hit their earnings target: you don’t. That city council has to maintain a public reputation: you don’t. Those hipsters have to keep up their persona to be admired by other hipster: you don’t care.

Most of us tend to overestimate how much we can lose by taking calculated risks, and most vastly underestimate the rewards, both personal and ideological. Almost every encounter you have can be one that get a “base hit” and every once in a while a grand slam.

Examples:

  1. Tim’s only exposure to an idea came from CNN. He’s never heard someone actually articulate the idea, and when you do, it doesn’t match his straw man. He is not convinced to change, but he now has a rock in his shoe about the media, about the idea, etc.

  2. A speaker addresses a room talking about the “bigots” who hold this belief or the “science deniers” who hold that belief. You raise your hand and say, “Actually, I hold that belief.” Now the 40-50% of the crowd who thought that but would not speak up got a small push of encouragement, and you made the speaker look foolish publicly.

  3. You work for a company that used to be focused on the work but has gone woke and is on the road to becoming truly evil. You don’t have an official leadership status and there is no real pathway for promotion. Instead, you start informally taking charge making sure that things get done. The managers like you because they get to increasingly check out from involvement and gradually depend on you. Now with the leverage you start pressing the boundaries of what is permitted and set a precedent that the rules are not really enforced. The management gradually loses control over their workers. You use your new informal position to get leverage either towards getting your way or undermining the management or the whole organization.

  4. You detect an internal contradiction or rivalry in a leftist group whom you have no affiliation with, but you pose for the part temporarily in order to really drum up the controversy and promote internal strife.

In each of these examples, consider what the actual, tangible risk is: getting yelled at by a liberal (who cares), getting a stern talking to from a boss, MAYBE getting fired (but then you can simply move on to the next job), getting blocked on social media. These are not pleasant but they are not a paralyzing risk. There are thousands of ways to start making a difference now without taking new moonshots. Moonshots can be great, but start with the basics.

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My supervisors are going to have a difficult time (or at least a cognitively dissonant time) giving me negative paperwork over forced compliance issues in the near future. All of my reviews have been great, I do not have anyone to backfill my position, and I’ve even been told by my direct supervisor that she admires how I’m sticking by my convictions.

If the Lord wills that I’m shown the door, then I’m happy to do it. But I’m not going to give up and do the work for them. I’ll respectfully stay with my convictions and make them back themselves into a corner.

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I think this is a great topic of discussion. And you are right….extreme leftists do this all the time. Even moderate ones.

I’ve got lots of friends on both sides and have been really struggling with how to address issues without losing relationships…but continuing to stand firm in my beliefs. There are more than likely lots of people feeling this way…we’re called “conservatives” not “extremists” for a reason. Many folks just mind their own business and keep their mouths shut, but that actually is part of the reason we’re in this mess right now.

Yes the message is “speak up! Let your voice be heard!” But what does that practically look like on a day to day basis? I like this opening conversation because you are pointing out scenarios and what it might look like to actually address these challenges.

I think we need more of that to help people who find themselves in uncharted territory. Good people who want to do the right thing….they just need some guidance on a practical level.

One lesson that I had to learn the hard way is what it means for someone to really be your friend. I used to assume that the people I got along with, went to church, with, had over for dinner, kids played with their kids, etc. were my friends, but I found that in times of crisis and hardship they were not actually there for me (some even directly betraying me), while people who I had never really expected to be there for me were.

Now, when it comes to relationships, I take the mindset that most people are acquaintances. I’ll invest in them like friends when I am able to, but I want to watch and wait for evidence before believing they actually are my friends. Good evidence of friendship is someone’s willingness to invest in you when it costs them anything.

Why do I bring this up here? Because anyone who is really your friend is not someone who is requiring you to embrace a lie about abortion, homosexuality, transgenerism, etc. If becoming open about your beliefs causes you to lose friends, you actually never lost a friend. You gained new information about who your friends are, and knowledge of who you can trust is among the most valuable information you can find.

Now, this is not to say that you should go nuke all the relationships where you don’t feel invested in, or where they have bad expectation of you, but it is to say that this should re-calibrate your gauge on how much you can trust them and how much investment you are willing to part with.

So that is my first practical suggestion. Reconsider your relationships with an evidence-based approach.