As a piece of art, it’s a perfect tribute to the state of the radical left: empty, radical, dangerously ignorant … and proud of it.
The new wave of Democrat Congressional representatives brought with them egotism, self-righteousness, ignorance, and racialism—traits that have come to define the grassroots of the far-left. These freshman politicians see themselves as the saviors of Washington and the first wave of the burgeoning resistance against the resurgence of conservatism in America.
It doesn’t matter if their output is vacuous, unworkable nonsense like the Green New Deal. It doesn’t seem to matter that they’re constantly dropping anti-Semitic comments. It doesn’t seem to matter that they’re utterly obsessed with skin color. As long as they’re “doing something,” they’re on the right side of history.
This superciliousness in the left’s newest voices is on full display in Netflix’s newest documentary about this new class of progressive politicians. Knock Down the House is specifically about the leadup to the 2018 midterms, but it’s clear that this is the origin story that the left wants as the narrative about these new leftist politicians.
The movie puts a glassy, populist sheen on the rise of these new, young progressives marching into Washington. It follows the elections of four female Democrat candidates: Amy Vilela (NV), Cori Bush (MO), Paula Jean Swearengin (WV) and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortex (NY). Of the four, the only successful election bid was AOC who ends up being the headliner for the film’s promotion by default.
Ocasio-Cortez is the perfect Democrat for the current insane iteration of the left. She’s beautiful, a true believer in the cause of Democratic Socialism, a woman of color, and completely vacuous. She’s a blind devotee of the cause who parrots every narrative the left preaches with enthusiasm.
Most of what we see in the film is backroom conversations happening between these four politicians and their teams, as well as moments with the public they’re pitching their platform to. Most of this is dedicated to bloviating on the progressive boilerplate issues from mass incarceration to Medicare-for-all, abolishing ICE, raising the minimum wage to $15/hour, and taking on Trump.
Most of this comes in the form of emotional appeals. For example, Vilela tragically lost her daughter which ultimately informed her beliefs on the healthcare system.
The movie seems to assume that you’re on board with these ideas already and doesn’t really spend much time making the case for their positions.
The majority of the film focuses on AOC’s success, but the movie does frame the failure of the other three politicians as a tragedy of the power of the system. As they say in the movie, it takes hundreds of people running to get a few successful people in.
The villain of the piece isn’t Trump, surprisingly. The main focus of AOC’s rage is former Democrat Congressman Joe Crowley. Hers isn’t just a war on the right, it’s a collectivist uprising, and Crowley is merely a representation of greed and systematic corruption holding down the poor and oppressed within the left itself.
During the segments where she debates Crowley, she berates him as a hypocrite taking money from Wall Street who isn’t brave enough to call Trump a fascist and demand his impeachment. Beating him was only the first step in her journey to, in the words of Barack Obama, fundamentally transforming the United States.
The moral of Knock Down the House is that the left’s fight for the future is found entirely in a lunge to the left through an embrace of socialism, racial identity politics, and anti-establishmentism. At a time when the left continues to purity spiral, the movie encourages the left to embrace its fringe ever further. It’s an empty appeal to leftist populism drowning in emotional arguments. With it, the film’s producers hope to cement the narrative of AOC’s and the new left’s rise to power as just the beginning of a revolution.
As a piece of art, it’s a perfect tribute to the state of the radical left: empty, radical, dangerously ignorant . . . and proud of it.DONATE
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