Dilbert’s Fascism: Observance versus Endorsement

Explaining it for Salon

Over at the fastest-crashing blog on the internet, Amanda Marcotte stopped twirling her hair and chewing gum long enough to write an odd, disjointed screed against Scott Adams. We’ve covered Marcotte’s problems briefly in the past (on gun control and political correctness), but this snarky exaggeration filled post is just too succulent to ignore.

Scott Adams, the creator of “Dilbert,” wants you to know he does not love Donald Trump. Sure, he probably sleeps with Trump’s picture under his pillow every night and spends his days imagining himself running, hand-in-hand, with Trump down the beach, laughing at all those liberals and how sorry they’ll be when there’s a President Trump. But he is totally not a Trump fanboy and he isn’t voting for him. He swears!

Gosh, Scott must be absolutely obsessed with our Orange Savior. Full disclosure: I have endorsed Donald Trump, I’ve got a Make America Great Again hat, and I don’t like Amanda Marcotte or Salon. I’ve read Scott Adams’ book How To Fail At Almost Everything And Still Succeed, and I found it interesting and I quite like Scott Adams even though we disagree on a great deal of things.

That’s the odd thing about adult humans. We’re capable of liking a person who holds vastly different views than ourselves. My sidebar has links to other blogs I may find interesting regardless of how we align on the issues. That’s just how life is. My wife and I disagree on a great deal of things, especially politics, but I love her a great deal.

Of all the bizarre spectacles that the Trump campaign has created, at the top of the list is the obsession the “Dilbert” cartoonist has with trying to convince America that his obvious hero worship of Trump is somehow a cool, detached analysis from a man who isn’t even interested in voting for the guy.

I read Dilbert and Scott Adams’ blog frequently; “hero worship” is a stretch. Adams has “endorsed” Hillary, but he has spent a great deal of time dissecting the popularity of Trump. Why does he continue to have success? Clearly everyone predicting his political demise was wrong — but Adams was one of the first to call it. He saw what Trump was about, despite political differences.

Keep in mind Adams once proposed a triumvirate of Trump, Sanders, and Bloomberg. He’s anti-political correctness (which may have triggered Marcotte) but not a right-winger.

Adams really, really, really wants you to believe he’s not a Trump supporter, because he knows, on some level, that outing yourself as a Trump supporter is like admitting in public that your mom still pins your address inside your clothes in case you get lost.

The same way the media really, really, really want you to believe they’re objective, and not Democrats with bylines. Because they know, on some level, that outing yourself as a biased liar is bad for your career. And endorsing Trump publicly hasn’t been a problem for the record number of voters he’s had nor the crowds showing up to his rallies.

Except when people from Marcotte’s side of the aisle start attacking them and destroying property.

In the real world, Trump has off-the-charts unfavorability ratings, but in the world of Scott Adams, Trump is a svengali of politics, headed for a landslide in November, due to the enormous persuasive power of racist cracks and non sequitur ramblings.

Whatever university Marcotte graduated from owes her a refund.

The persuasive power of Trump isn’t racist cracks or ramblings. It’s finding the populist position on an issue and assuming the correct side. “Make America Great Again!” hits a lot of notes: nostalgia (powerful), desire for greatness, and so on.

Immigration and terrorism concern the hell out of people. Trade deals have wrecked jobs. Trump embraces fixing these. What about that is racist? Skipping ahead.

Now Adams has a real doozy of post, where he pretends to endorse Clinton, but of course it’s a cover story for his real endorsement: Trump. In the post, Adams literally accuses Clinton of trying to get Trump killed because, “once you define Trump as Hitler, you also give citizens moral permission to kill him.”

(Worth noting: Clinton has not defined Trump as Hitler.)

The real endorsement is an indictment against the violent extremists attempting to quash political speech they disagree with.

(Worth noting: Adams didn’t lay the definition of Trump as Hitler at Clinton’s feet, but rather surrogates. Which is undeniably true.)

“So I’ve decided to endorse Hillary Clinton for president, for my personal safety,” Adams adds, arguing that if Trump is in danger from the supposedly murderous Clinton crew, then so is anyone that doesn’t support Clinton.

People were physically assaulted. A woman was attacked for what she was wearing. There are indications these riotous thugs have been paid by PACs.

Adams is being sarcastic without snark, and Marcotte is too stupid to understand that.

The purpose of this is to try to convince people that Clinton is some kind of dangerous fascist demagogue who will send her brownshirts into the street to force people into compliance with violence.

Because that’s what has happened.

For instance, there is the classic post where he argued that ours is a “female-dominated” society, because, in what he clearly believes is a grave injustice, “access to sex is strictly controlled by the woman.”

Add human psychology and sexuality to the things she doesn’t understand. It’s widely acknowledged by grown adults that in most cases, the access to sex is determined by the woman. To the extent that if two college students get drunk and have sex the fault is always ascribed to the male student — because he clearly used the drinking to get sex. It can’t be that two drunk idiots made a mistake.

Women control the access to sex because men are wired to want to have sex nearly constantly from puberty until their testosterone drops off.

Then she starts straight up lying about what is said:

Or, in another post, he moans about how unfair it is to hold men responsible for ” behaving badly, e.g. tweeting[by which he means sending harassing messages and dick pics to women], raping, cheating, and being offensive to just about everyone in the entire world.”

That would be quite alarming, so I clicked the link. Check for yourself:

Now consider human males. No doubt you have noticed an alarming trend in the news. Powerful men have been behaving badly, e.g. tweeting, raping, cheating, and being offensive to just about everyone in the entire world. The current view of such things is that the men are to blame for their own bad behavior. That seems right. Obviously we shouldn’t blame the victims. I think we all agree on that point. Blame and shame are society’s tools for keeping things under control.


If we allowed men to act like unrestrained horny animals, all hell would break loose.

Which can be observed in many middle eastern and African nations…

Adams is not incorrect that society has evolved away from letting men behave naturally, nor is he wrong that fulfilled men are less likely to act badly. His post is a theoretical, about how to address it — he is not proposing that we stop blaming men who commit rape, for committing rape. If Marcotte was honest or literate she would see that.

I disagree with a lot of what Adams says in that post. I don’t think every man would become a raping sociopath if allowed the opportunity — otherwise, I think we’d have more rapes as it is. But I don’t see him as saying holding men responsible for their behavior is “unfair.”

Deep down, I think Marcotte is afraid Scott Adams is correct about Trump’s persuasion abilities. She’s afraid of that because her candidate would get wrecked in that scenario — Adams called for a historic sweep. Marcotte is quite left of Trump — she’s so far left she can’t even see the middle anymore. She’s a social justice type, obsessed with people’s offense and seeing hate in every statement by her opponents.

Dilbert hasn’t gone fascist — but Salon promotes crushing dissent the way fascists do.