From the people who bring you the Prager University videos comes an app which offers easy access to facts and arguments on politics from a conservative perspective…
Is this a good idea? Sure it is. The Right has been doing an atrocious job of making its intellectual product available to regular folks. Conservative intellectuals have for a long time been far complacent in situating themselves in think tanks and at publications like National Review and pounding out high-sounding white papers about free markets and the rule of law.
Problem is, nobody reads any of that stuff.
We here at the Hayride love National Review. I write for the American Spectator. In the grand scheme of things those publications have an infinitessimally small reach. Alexa says National Review ranks 1,191 in the United States in web traffic, which isn’t great. The American Spectator checks in at 7,088.
Those are two of the longer-running and most respected conservative publications, and relatively nobody reads them. And yet they influence a large swath of the people who run the conservative movement.
I’m not saying that the people running the conservative movement should stop reading National Review and The American Spectator. Not at all. What I’m saying is that if ordinary folks aren’t reading them, then without something to serve as a bridge you’re going to find that the conservative “smart set” will end up out of touch with regular Joes all across the country.
Which is how you get Trump as the GOP nominee. We can talk about some of the suspicious things which happened in the GOP primary and all the earned media Trump took advantage of at the expense of much better candidates, we can speculate about whether Trump is even running to win rather than set the stage for this Trump TV plan which seems to be percolating off to the side…we can do all of that, but at the end of the day ordinary Republican voters no longer seem to be invested in the core message of the American founding, which for our purposes here we’ll say is that you can control your own stars in this country, your good behavior and honest efforts will ultimately be rewarded while dishonesty, sloth and theft will lead to perdition, and through work and creativity you can achieve the American dream without needing to have it provided for you by the king or the dictator.
That message is absolutely not taught in schools, and it hasn’t been for a very long time. It’s not reinforced in popular culture at all – pop culture teaches the opposite. Pop culture teaches grievance and supplication.
So every possible outlet to provide education and reinforcement that conservatives can offer will help at least a little.
And if PragerPedia helps make better messengers at the street level, that’s a good thing.
Ultimately, though, this is a political product. Politics is downstream from culture. We need a CulturePedia app if we’re going to fix this grand problem we face.