April 12, 2024 - 6:00pm

→ Curtis Yarvin debates Christopher Rufo on the future of the Right

Help, the Online Right is fighting again! In a long, wide-ranging article published yesterday for the digital magazine IM-1776, the neoreactionary blogger Curtis Yarvin and the conservative activist Christopher Rufo debate DEI, Plato and the American Revolution. In a battle between Yarvin’s often high-falutin metaphors and Rufo’s more practical approach to advancing conservative thought, there doesn’t seem to be a clear winner. Just insults galore.

Yarvin says of Rufo’s campaign against DEI that “even when your sword goes home and sinks to the hilt, you only demonstrate what a pinprick it is to this Brobdignagian monster”. The activist, meanwhile, asks his counterpart, “You claim to have immense ambitions […]  but what are your practical accomplishments?” Ouch.

But there’s more. Rufo accuses Yarvin of being “too clever” not to know that “lifting metaphors from action films and fantasy novels is not a substitute for the practical work of governance”, but “too arrogant to fully accept it”. Is the Right’s cathedral about to experience a schism?

→ Nearly half of Germans want more Ukraine aid

Olaf Scholz may be something of a Ukraine sceptic, but the German public seems to be moving in the opposite direction. According to a new ZDF poll, 42% of Germans now think there should be more military support sent from the West. Significantly, this is up by 11 points since February — meaning that the hold-up on US aid, as well as fears that Donald Trump will stop support for Ukraine altogether, may be worrying Germans.

This finding does come with the caveat that the German public doesn’t appear to believe Ukraine can win the war, however. The poll showed that only 8% expect the country to defeat Russia, down from 23% in August 2023. A total of 82% is “sceptical” that Ukraine can win. Is there any contradiction in these views? Either way, it’ll be interesting to see if this research influences German policy. Boots on the ground, anyone?

→ Ontario resident wins phallus-preserving vaginoplasty case

As common sense returns to the UK on trans issues, Canada is marching in the opposite direction.

This week, an Ontario resident won a case to secure public funding for gender-affirming surgery described as “experimental”. The person, known as K.S., will be flown to the US at taxpayer expense to receive a phallus-preserving vaginoplasty (don’t Google that one) after a years-long legal battle.

Ontario’s Health Insurance Plan initially denied K.S.’s request for the surgery in 2022 on the grounds that it is experimental and not available in Canada. But K.S. argued that their reason for wanting a vaginoplasty without a penectomy would validate their non-binary identity, winning on appeal. How would the world cope without such valuable and important surgeries?