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The Demise of the Too-Online

Charlie Cooke is known for bringing up his local bar on The Editors, often to illustrate a political point. Today, he cautions listeners that anyone saying Taylor Swift is working with the Pentagon is completely out of touch with normal, everyday Americans.

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“I know you think I get all of my political intelligence from the bar,” he says, “but my test here is: Could you say what these people are saying at a normal bar in the United States without someone starting to look on Amazon for straightjackets? And I think the answer is no.”

Charlie argues, “If you pointed during the divisional round of playoffs or the AFC Championship Game . . . and said, ‘You see that Taylor Swift, she’s a Pentagon psyop,’ people will quite rightly look at you as if you’re crazy and they won’t want to be associated with you.

“Maybe you can convince a few weirdos online to make you rich by doing that,” he says, “But politics, the sort of politics these people engage in, is much broader than that. They don’t have to agree with the majority, of course. Nobody in a free country should agree with the majority simply because it’s the majority. But if you spend your days as these people do . . . trying to convince enough people to come along with you that you can wield federal power, then you actually have to care whether or not you are completely out of touch with the country.

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“And this sort of absurd conspiracy theorizing is completely out of touch with the country.”

The Editors podcast is recorded on Tuesdays and Fridays every week and is available wherever you listen to podcasts.

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