In economics there is a concept called externality. Externality is when a firm is able to offload some of its business costs onto third parties, generally the public.
For instance, a company that manufactures some chemical product dumps waste in a river that villagers drink from. The cost of proper waste disposal was offloaded onto the villagers in the form of higher healthcare and funerary costs (in neo-liberal parlance, lost productivity.)
The externalized costs are spread over a wide group of people who may not act be well-organized. The chemical dumping firm is organized and powerful. The concept of externality can also be applied to other kinds of behavior.
As I was watching video clips of the Shia LaBeouf arrest, I was struck by a few thoughts.
First, I hope Shia is okay. I mean, I hope he is performing, I hope he is trying to scrounge out some life from a dying career by ingratiating himself with that venal segment of the ruling class that keeps him semi-employed. I hope he isn’t really succumbing to any sort of mental debility.
Anyway, in the presence of the scruffy Shia, star struck, seemingly psychotropically addled women converged around the cameras and chanted “he will not divide us” in a cult-like, robotic manner.
These privileged, mostly white women, stared blankly into the camera but, in the presence of minor celebrity, their eyes drifted a little toward the hopefully acting Shia.
Now, I suppose what these people are doing is an example of the by now well-worn phrase virtue signaling. They have imbibed as their religion the political correctness served up by academia and mainstream media, and it is all they know. Their self-value, and their valuation of the indoctrination they received in college, is commensurate with their massive student debt bill.
They got into a pricey school and into massive debt, so the product they were sold must be highly valuable. Of course, we could run this bit of wishful reasoning in reverse: if an institution loaded you with 100k of debt, perhaps it is not all that concerned with your education as with your exploitation. Perish the thought.
What struck me most when looking at these sad, misled creatures was how cavalierly and callously they externalized the cost of their political correctness onto millions of innocent third parties.
For example, the thousands of people killed in Chicago, among other places, because the cost of thinking through the sources and causes of those kinds of problems is high for a PC zombie, and externalizing the cost onto Chicagoans and the unfortunate citizens of surrounding suburbs is easier.
Or, take the collapse of working class wage income across the country. Fighting over real economic resource distribution is difficult, because to fight for a bigger share of the wealth pie means fighting against the strong.
Attacking people for their race, religion or identity is easy if the target race, religion or identity has been prescribed for the purpose. In the modern PC cult, the white male is the designated scapegoat for all worldly ills. Piling on this nebulous chimera is easy in theory.
In the real world, there aren’t “white people.” There are the right kind of white people and the wrong kind. The right kind mindlessly chant into the camera around the character Shia is playing, or work for CNN. The wrong kind face shrinking job opportunities, destroyed healthcare, and a cultural wasteland littered with tropes and cliches of abuse to their ethnicity, religion and identity generally.
These little matters, deadly Chicago and the hollowed out blue-collar middle America, are the little externalities of the business of being a politically correct snowflake, or a Hollywood B-lister, or a CNN anchoress.
The cost of going against the powerful grain of political correctness would be too high for our precious snowflakes in the lower-archy of the elite. Thus, the price of political correctness is born by that large part of the country that has lost its physical and economic security through the marriage of neo-liberal economics and social justice politics offered by that ruling class.
This of course left a large segment of the voting public unrepresented and available for political courtship. And of course the suitor came a-knocking, hairspray and all.
Hence the political earthquakes we are witnessing, as the parties bearing the cost of externality revolt against the ruling class and its army of zombies and snowflakes, through the person of Trump and other political entrepreneurs adept enough to identify and represent this market that had been left unrepresented so long by the rest of the political class.
Watching their bloated idol Clinton crash and burn like the Hindenburg before the New Politics must have been jarring for the most devout adherents of PC. After such a blow, there is little left to do than chant into the camera like a spuddering idiot “he will not divide us,” and hope a fading celebrity takes notice of your fading looks.