Deadly Freedom

Gary Gerstle explains that back in the 1990s, when the IT revolution was beginning, the Republican Newt Gingrich was the Silicon Valley’s greatest cheerleader. But the techie entrepreneurs were put off by the Republicans’ belief in morality. They wanted freedom not only from government regulation of industry but also freedom from any constraint. This is why the tech industries are today so woke.

Of course, people who are wealthy and extremely disciplined can withstand a lack of external constraints because they create their own with the help of a platoon of expensive specialists they can hire. For people who don’t have the money, the discipline or a very high intellect, this kind of freedom is quite literally deadly. We can see that in the plummeting life expectancy, deaths of despair, the soaring opioid addiction, etc.

The Current Political Order

Gary Gerstle defines a political order as a state of affairs

when the opposition acquiesces to an order’s ideological and policy imperatives.

The Rise and Fall of the Neoliberal Order

By this measure – and I think it’s a correct one – we are already living in a woke political order.