Axios Not Only Latest to Call for Plan to 'Deprogram America's Extremists'; It Has More Than a Few Ideas How to Do It

AP Photo/John Minchillo

From deprogramming to reprogramming to “national reconciliation commissions,” the left, along with some who falsely claim to be objective, cannot get enough of the notion that millions of supporters of Donald Trump —if not tens of millions — are a direct threat to society as we know it, national security, and God knows what else.

Simply put, these “dangerous” people must be “made right.”

So left-leaning Axios (regardless of protestations to the contrary), became the latest to climb aboard the deprogramming train earlier this week. In an “interesting” piece titled How to deprogram America’s extremists, technology editor Kyle Daly began with the following declaration:

“It will take an all-out national effort to dismantle the radicalization pipeline that has planted conspiracy theories in the heads of millions of Americans and inspired last month’s attack on the Capitol, experts tell Axios.”

“Experts,” no doubt, solicited for the purpose of validating a predetermined narrative.

Daly suggested two objectives, that if achieved, “could make a difference.”

Keeping extremists out of the institutions where they could do the greatest damage — like the military, police departments and legislatures.

Providing help for those who have embraced dangerous ideologies.

Following the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy told The Associated Press he was concerned about an insider attack or other threats involved in securing the inauguration, prompting the FBI to vet all of the 25,000 National Guard troops coming into Washington for the event. Warranted? Without knowledge of specific or generalized threats, I’m not in a position to say. But what about those “dangerous ideologies”?

Alluding to the “experts,” Daly wrote that online platforms “must be unwavering in their commitment to root out conspiracy theories and lies that undermine faith in democracy.” “Radicalization and counterterrorism experts broadly applaud tech companies’ efforts, now underway,” he said, “to remove this material and the accounts that spread it off their platforms, despite heavy blowback from conservatives.”

Incidentally, count me among those who have yet to see evidence that any of the above occurred on Parler.

So is this a good time to ask if Daly and Axios believe Black Lives Matter Marxists and Antifa anarchists present the same threat level to “institutions where they could do the greatest damage”? Or what about if they “only” present a threat level — and act upon it — to burn down cities across America, and worse? Are those groups a threat to society, worthy of “deprogramming”? I mean, they have a pretty impressive resume, don’t they?

Again, “shockingly,” Daly wrote that Twitter’s permanent suspension of Donald Trump’s account “is seen on its own as a major asset in the fight to slow or reverse radicalization.”

It gets “better.”

Prominent in the Axios article is a declaration from Daniel Koehler, director of the German (interesting connection) Institute on Radicalization and De-radicalization Studies, that America needs a “Marshall Plan against domestic extremism.”

According to Koehler:

“The spread of extremist conspiracy theories in the United States is the second most dangerous pandemic the country faces right now.

“The damage that’s been done to the U.S. in terms of community and social cohesion will be immense and will be lasting.”

Um, month after month of burning, looting, indiscriminate murders, and innumerable small businesses destroyed, along with the lives of Americans who built them. Where does that rank on the totem pole of dangerous extremism?

The U.S. is behind Europe’s “coordinated deradicalization efforts” by 25–30 years, Koehler said, according to Daly. Interesting. You know, given how well the multiculturalism experiment — the Islamization of Europe — has worked out.

Daly wrote that a “purely punitive” plan would, at its worst, “fuel extremists’ sense of persecution and push them closer to violence.” (Again, BLM and Antifa unavailable for comment.) Therefore, “serious resources need to be mustered toward providing an offramp [sic] for people who have been drawn into extremist ideologies.” (Scientology comes to mind, but only with a sarcastic grin on my face.)

Daly offered a few suggestions from more “experts” on how to provide the “off-ramp.”

Private and public-private programs —  because “federal programs would likely be doomed to fail … because distrust and hatred of the government is already a core tenet of far-right extremism” — “are more likely to be effective,” he wrote, “particularly if they’re able to get endorsement and funding from federal and state governments.”

Among recommendations from the “experts,” “anti-extremism counseling programs and support groups; education programs that work with schools to identify risks and signs of incipient radicalization; and rehabilitation organizations that work with the incarcerated and formerly incarcerated.”

Also, “something like a national hotline or online portal could steer people to local resources to help them or loved ones escape the radicalization pipeline.”

A veritable 12-step program. Please.

A couple of questions.

Look, it’s hard to disagree that the tinfoil-hat-wearing QAnon conspiracy theorists damn near make Alex Jones look like a piker, but again, where were these “deprogramming,” “reprogramming,” “national reconciliation” clowns for months, last year?

Where were their “counseling programs,” “support groups,” “education programs,” and “national hotlines” for the radicalized jackasses who torched American cities for months, all the while spitting in the face of law enforcement officers, and all but daring the police to try to stop them?

Answers? I’ll wait.