Free Association is the Only Right that Matters

The Enlightenment’s great mistake — from which the whole catalog of Revolutionary horrors flowed — was portraying Man as a free agent.  A person without ties of family, country, or creed, the Enlightened said, was the only truly free man, which is the same thing as the only real man.  Only he who has cast off the shackles of “tradition” can ever be “self-actualized,” as the modern witch-doctors of psychotherapy would say.

Like all the Enlightened’s pronouncements, this was old wine in new wineskins.  Jesus (just to stick with a metaphor) said the same thing.  So did the Buddha.  The only difference is, those guys knew that when you strip away all that “tradition” stuff — that is, the illusion of this so-called “real world” — you’re left with… nothing.

Both of them gave specific, detailed instructions about leaving behind everyone and everything that stood between one’s Self and the Truth.  And both were quite clear that, in the process of removing everything between one’s Self and the Truth, one will come to realize that the “self” itself is just one more barrier to the Truth.  Call it the “Unmoved Mover,” or “Nirvana,” or what have you, you — this temporary nexus of causes and conditions, as Buddhists would say — are literally nothing.  Only the Truth truly IS.

That insight — that “you” are nothing but your self, and your “self” is nothing — is the key to Leftist psychology.  It’s a hard thing for anyone to grasp — and even we believers see only through a glass darkly — but for the Left it’s an unbearable, crushing contradiction, because of course there’s no Magic Sky Fairy holding the world in existence through a continuous act of divine will.  Which means that whatever you are today, you can’t be tomorrow, because time moves on and nothing in this world — which is the only world — ever stands still.  Thus everything a Leftist does — every word, every action, every silence, every inaction — is frantic displacement activity against the inexorable decay of her “self.”*

Which is why such people — by no means all of them on the political Left — are cancers who destroy every group to which they’re admitted.  I don’t know if they can be fixed — personally, I very much doubt it — but unless and until they are, they must be avoided at all costs.

Fortunately, there’s a way to do it.

Most “conservatives” (using the term strictly for convenience) were blown away by the Enlightenment, for the same reason we Normals are blown away by transgenderism etc. — it’s just so cockeyed, so cattywampus to the real world, that we’re utterly stumped for arguments.  Actually arguing for the proposition “boys have a penis; girls have a vagina” seems, to us, like trying to “argue” for the “proposition” that humans need air to breathe.  By the time you’ve looked up “axiom” in the dictionary and pulled the Biology 101 textbook off the shelf, they’ve already granted several PhDs in “gender studies.”  To modify Orwell just a bit, in insane times it takes a special kind of man just to state the obvious.

A man like Joseph de Maistre.  The original “reactionary,” de Maistre argued that there’s no such thing as a “rational” polity, because any attempt to frame one will always devolve into arguments about ends, means, and above all, legitimacy.  This is because people are people and not cells on a spreadsheet.  In other words, there are lots of individual men, and many different types of men, but no such thing as Man.

The Founding Fathers understood this.  That’s why, even as they let Thomas Jefferson gas on about “all Men are created equal,” they designed a system specifically to safeguard man’s inequality.  No, I don’t mean the 3/5 Compromise or any of that hooey.  I mean federalism itself.  Whether or not slavery was an integral part of being a “Virginian” in 1789 (it wasn’t), it was clear to everyone that Virginians and Massachussans were different — irreconciliably different — and that any political system which required them to be on the same page for any but the biggest of national questions would rapidly devolve into anarchy.

Words mean what they mean.  “Unequal” doesn’t mean “inferior;” it means “not the same.”  A man like Light Horse Harry Lee would cheerfully agree that Virginians and Massachussans are “unequal,” but suggesting that Massachussans are therefore superior to Virginians would be met with an invitation to debate the issue with pistols at dawn.  Everyone at the Constitutional Convention understood this, because they’d just fought a big nasty war together, and everyone there had seen the color of everyone else’s blood.

Just as every sin in the Bible, then, can be reduced to Envy, so can every right in the Constitution be reduced to the right of free association.  If I’m not free to associate with whomever I wish — and equally free to exclude whomever I wish from my society — then whatever other “freedoms” I have are meaningless, because there’s no such thing as Man, only men.  If I can be compelled to violate my conscience because some lesbians can’t bake their own damn cake, them what does it matter that I’m “free” to complain about it afterwards?

The linked article suggests a pushback tactic.  If you didn’t read it, it says that the Supreme Court dodged another gay wedding cake case — they sent it back down to the lower court, to “reconsider” in the light of the recent Colorado decision.  But that decision, you’ll recall, was deliberately written in such a way as to establish no precedent.  It didn’t say that bakers can’t be compelled to violate their consciences; it only held that, in this particular case, the Colorado authorities showed “animus” in going after the bakers.  Presumably, then, a sufficiently “neutral” group of bureaucrats could compel folks to violate their consciences….

I wonder what they’d say about that, though, if someone decided to force a different group to violate its conscience.  I’m sure there are out-and-proud gay bakeries out there.  What if, say, a group decided that this bakery, and this bakery alone, must bake a cake for their “Straight Pride” parade?  After all, nobody, from the Supreme Court on down, has ever made the point that there are a zillion other bakeries out there — everyone involved takes it as read that this bakery, and this one alone, is the only one that can do it.  What about halal meat shops?  Kosher delis?  Do they get a pass too?  Even if Trump appoints Ray Guy to the federal bench, our black-robed overlords can only punt so many times.  Either we have free association, or we don’t….

… which means we either have our freedom, or we don’t.  It’ll be enlightening to find out.

 

 

*This is a more highfalutin’ way of saying what I was trying to say in all those NPC guides (I, II, III, IV) back when.

 

 

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Get Woke, Go Broke – College Edition

As a former toiler in the groves of academe, I suppose I should have a comment on the whole Oberlin thing.  So here goes:

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

Or, as the kids these days say on the Internetz,

lol get fucked.

Still, since it’s good for a chuckle, join me for a trip down memory lane.  This was quite a few years ago, but one of the departments in one of the places I worked (part of the composite I call “Flyover State”) was briefly threatened with legal trouble.  A recent interviewee for an open faculty position asserted that he’d been blackballed because of his politics.  As I had no dog in the fight, my only thought when I first heard about it was that it’s a stupid threat — how could you possibly prove such a thing?

My second thought, which got jammed into my head via email about five minutes after the first, was: You fucking idiots.  For, you see, all the very very intelligent people in the department decided that this would be a great time to virtue-signal — and really, when isn’t a great time? — so they got on the campus listservs to insist that we “have a conversation” about “perceptions of bias,” in which, in the course of patting themselves on the back about how completely open-minded and unbiased and tolerant they all are, they unanimously agreed that of course they’d blackballed the guy because of his politics, and damn right, too — nobody to the right of Mao Zedong is welcome here.

They really ARE that dumb, y’all.  Of all the dozens and dozens of hours of “training” they make you take at a modern U — sexual harassment training, “unconscious bias” training, etc. — not once did they bring in someone from HR to explain the cardinal rule of corporate communication: Never put anything on the company email that you’re not willing to see published on the front page of the New York Times.  The rejected candidate didn’t end up pursuing her lawsuit, but I’m confident that this is only because no lawyer would take the case — being slightly smarter than professors, lawyers assume that nobody would ever be so stupid as to take written notes on a criminal conspiracy using the company email.

One wonders how many other schools, how many other times, dodged similar bullets?

Again, please note that this was many years ago.  Several “generations” of professors and administrators have come and gone since then, so naturally the dumb have gotten oh so much dumber… to the point where you’ve got the fucking Dean of Students handing out, on campus, this flyer:

Sorry for all the italics, y’all, but I can’t think of a better way to emphasize the truly flabbergasting idiocy on display here.  There’s just no way to spin this as a private individual acting as a consumer, or an academic pursuing scholarly inquiry.  This looks like the official corporate position of Oberlin College because — given the circumstances — that’s effectively what it is.

And now Oberlin is $33 million poorer.

The fallout will be interesting, to say the least.  As we’ve all noted many times, “Get Woke, Go Broke” is such a common phenomenon, we’ve got a catchy rhyming slogan for it.  As we’ve all noted equally many times, the #Woke ostentatiously don’t give a shit.  Universities are the #Wokest places in America… and they’ve all got serious cash-flow issues.  What, you think the $100K salaries of the Diversity ladies and the five cafeterias for the football team come out of the company checking account?  They use so much smoke-and-mirrors accounting, the Enron guys are getting a prison stiffie just thinking about it.  Oberlin is now claiming that a $33 million hit will effectively close the college doors… and they’re probably right.

Will the university system as a whole wise up?  I wouldn’t bet on it — like the man said, SJWs always double down.  Fascinating times ahead.  Fascinating, stupid times.

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Judo with Karl, Part II

Marx said that culture is the “superstructure” which rests on the “base” of economics.

Given that

  • society always organizes itself around the relations of the means of production;

therefore

  • change in the relations of the means of production drives social change.

Which left the Left in a real pickle when it came to the reality of daily life behind the Iron Curtain.  One can hardly imagine a more comprehensive change in the relations of the means of production than that effected by the Bolsheviks… but “soviet power plus electrification,” as Lenin described the ideal communist society, seemed to entail a whole lot of people getting reformed to death in labor camps.

Fellow travelers took their best shot at squaring that murderous circle.  Whether or not “Daniel Norman” is a Scottish name, that article is Caledonia on crack.  True communism has never been tried, comrade!  Still, it’s worth looking at, as he quotes Marx himself describing “true communism:”

Communism as the positive abolition of private property as human self-alienation, means the real appropriation of human entity by and for man; thus the complete, conscious return – accomplished inside all the riches of the past development – of man for himself qua social, that is, as a human being. This Communism is, as perfect Naturalism, identical with Humanism, and as perfect Humanism identical with Naturalism; it is the real solution of the antagonism between man and nature, between man and man; the genuine solution of the conflict between existence and essence, between objectivisation and self-affirmation, between freedom and necessity, between the individual and the species. It is history’s solved riddle and is conscious of being the solution. (Ibid).*

Everybody got that?  “The real appropriation of human entity by and for man.”  Though Onkel Karl could obfuscate with the best of ’em — he was, after all, a German philosophy PhD — he doesn’t get enough credit for his prose.  Marx, like Lenin, could be a brutally effective polemicist when he wanted.  If that definition of “true communism” reads like puffy, verbose bullshit, proclaiming everything and nothing simultaneously, then that’s the way he wanted it to read…

…which is further supported by this gem, describing daily life in the Socialist Utopia:

[each man has] the possibility to do this today and that tomorrow, to hunt in the morning, to go fishing in the afternoon, to do cattle breeding in the evening, to criticize after dinner.

He doesn’t say who will clean the toilets or dig the ditches, but let’s be charitable and assume that our huntin’ fishin’ stock breedin’ opera critic will fit them in somewhere between naptime and the afternoon chess match.  The source of this remarkable job description, The German Ideology, would be called “juvenilia” if The Master had ever been anything less than an omniscient oracle; it’s no surprise he never got specific about life after The Revolution again.

Fun as it is, I’m not just making fun of Karl Marx and his goofy egghead fantasies.  There’s a point to this: Marx may have been right after all, if — as with everything Leftists say — you flip it 180 degrees.  What if culture is the base, and economics the superstructure?

Section break!

Since otherwise the guys in Our Thing will be fighting about this until the sun’s a cinder, let’s stipulate that

  1. biology (“race”) and culture have a dialectical relationship; and
  2. biology is prior.

Thus the oft-repeated dictum that Africa, for instance, is the way it is because it’s full of Africans.  Insofar as it’s possible to measure such things (and I’d love to see the methodology they used), the average Equatorial Guinean IQ is 56.  The “best” culture in the history of the human race isn’t going to produce too many rocket scientists from that raw material.

HOWEVER: That’s not to say that Equatorial Guinea can’t have a functioning society with a thriving economy.  Malabo isn’t going to replace San Jose in the Silicon Valley of the new millennium, but it doesn’t have to be your standard schizophrenic sub-Saharan shithole, either.  There’s a reason modern African history isn’t a requirement of any school curriculum, K-thru-PhD, and it’s this: Monstrosities like Belgian Congo aside, life was indisputably better for the majority of Africans — safer, healthier, more prosperous, far more stable, and, crucially, even more “socially just” — under colonial rule.

The Germans, for instance, were no one’s idea of enlightened colonizers, but when they ran the place Tanzania was a net food exporter.  The Tanzanians did even better under the British, but it only took a few years of Julius Nyerere‘s pan-African Marxist dumbfuckery to crater the economy and render the country one of the poorest and most malnourished in the world.

Same people, diametrically opposite cultures.

Speaking of the Germans, we actually have a historical example of an economy entirely subordinated to a culture.  I’m going to tread carefully here, since we seem to have picked up a few casual readers of late (we might even be up to 14 or 15 regular readers now!).  So if you haven’t been here a while, this is for you: Since the merest mention of the group in question brings out the lunatics, around here we refer to their animating philosophy as Cat Fancy.  This is not intended to be cute.  Most importantly, it is the furthest fucking thing in the entire goddamn universe from an endorsement.  When it comes to this particular group, I’m with Indiana Jones:

I can’t make it any clearer.

But they are important, and they do seem to have some things to teach us about our current situation, as they wrestled — evilly, I can’t stress that enough — with the same underlying issues.  “Cat Fancy,” then, is a way to talk about the ideas without reference to the — again, utterly reprehensible — details.

Everybody got that?  All right then:

As everyone in Our Thing knows, and as everyone on the Left who knows frantically instructs us to forget, the “S” in the Cat Fanciers’ official acronym stands for “Socialist.”  That’s because they were Socialists.  Cat Fancy agreed 100% with Marx’s analysis of class conflict.  They were all-in on the idea that the relations of the means of production Marx called “capitalism” caused that “self-alienation” stuff from the first quote.  Marx said that capitalism turns everyone into an interchangeable, deracinated producer-unit to be fed directly into the maw of industry.  The Cat Fanciers completely agreed.

But whereas Marx saw the end of explicitly national identities as a good and necessary step on the path to utopia — “workers of the world, unite!” — the Cat Fanciers viewed it with horror.  The “N” part of the Cat Fancy acronym, after all, stands for “National.”  They wanted to be German workers, and they structured their entire economic program around the uplift of the German worker.

We have ample historical evidence of how that worked out.  Setting aside for the moment the question of whether something like Cat Fancy could exist without war,** the history of the nation in question, 1933 to 1938, gives us a pretty good look at what the judo-flipped, cultural-base-economic-superstructure version of Marxism looks like.  Bringing the war back into it gives you a glimpse at what it was intended to become, given the massive resources of the East.  The Nerd wasn’t as pithy as Lenin, but “feudalism plus autobahns” is a pretty good summary of Cat Fancy’s wildest fantasies.  The East was supposed to be a network of medieval market towns, linked by huge freeways and populated by wehrbauern, who really were supposed to be something like Teutonic knights with tanks and air support.

Again, and crucially: All of this was intended to support the culture.  It was taken as given that this, and ONLY this, could save the culture in question from utter destruction.  Where Marxism is just envy dressed up like an economic system, Cat Fancy is paranoia masquerading as an economic system.

In The Current Year, everyone agrees that Western Civ is in mortal danger.  See above: The Left doesn’t even bother anymore to disguise its glee at the prospect of destroying whatever remains of European culture.

We also all agree that the Left’s main weapon is economic.  These days, Lenin’s Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism reads like a GloboHomo how-to manual.  So triumphant is global finance capital that minor things like “making a profit” are blithely tossed aside in the pursuit of social justice — “get woke, go broke” is so common a phenomenon that we’ve made a pithy rhyming slogan about it, but note that none of the #Woke give a shit.  Our Thing loves to bang on about comic books and Star Wars (which doesn’t at all make us look like a bunch of whiny manchildren), so let’s go with that.  Thanks to Hollywood accounting and the fact that there are about three media companies left in the world, Disney et al can keep releasing “flops” that only make a billion dollars per.  They’ve bet that they can all but release three hours’ footage of Mickey Mouse taking a dump on the Constitution while getting a hummer from a gay transgendered dragonkin Of Color, and so long as it has light saber sounds the public will watch it.

Guess what?  They’re right.  Hell, Disney and Netflix are gearing up to boycott the entire state of Georgia.  Think about that — instead of consumers boycotting companies because of their predatory business practices, companies are boycotting their own customers for wrongthink.  And guess further what?  It’s working.  So long as the dollars keep flowing — and the Chinese, now among the biggest movie consumers worldwide, surely don’t care about overt propaganda in their space operas — the cultural assault will continue apace.

So: What is to be done?  Can economic arguments be used as a springboard for cultural ones? With what success?  How?  History has a lot of lessons out there, if we choose to look.

 

 

 

*the “ibid,” if you’re interested, is MEGA 1/3
**The Cat Fanciers themselves were uniquivocal: No, it can’t.  War was as essential a part of their thing as…you know… that other thing.  But once again, nobody’s suggesting that Cat Fancy is the way to go.

 

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Journalism

I recently stopped by Ace of Spades, to see if the same guy who spent all of 2015-16 sucking off Ted Cruz while turning his blog into the #1 Trump-hate vanity site on the Internet has gotten tired of whining about “cucks” and “the Establishment” yet.  Evidently not, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t still some lulz, as the kids these days say.

That link, if you don’t feel like clicking, is about a “non-profit” called “The Save Journalism Project.”  Ace rightly notes that it’s a bill-paying scam for laid off “journalists” like the ones at HuffPost and Buzzfeed.  Which is schadenfreudily delicious, I’ll admit, but a few dozen generations from now, if our descendants ever feel like giving representative government another shot, “journalism” will be a case study in how not to do it.

Y’all remember that great old show Dirty Jobs with Mike Rowe?  I can’t say I watched it much, but I loved the concept.  It illustrated the concept of “supply and demand” in about the only way the Millennial generation could grasp.  What, you mean municipal sewer workers are paid $75 an hour?!?  Oh, the social injustice!!!…. until you see that they earn every (literally) stinking penny, and then some.

Meanwhile, the demand for yet another snotty barista with a Gender Studies degree hovers near zero.

Journalism is the ur-case of backassward incentives.  There are two ways to report “the news.”  One is glorified stenography.  Actually, it’s worse than stenography, as you’ve got to boil down some elected airhead’s rambling 15 minute nothingburger of a statement into a few sentences that can be read even by the near-illiterate.  No one in his right mind would ever want to do that, absent some serious green.

Newspapers, by contrast, all depend on unpaid interns.

The second method of news reportage is “investigative journalism,” which — amazingly — I won’t sneeze at.  Archival work is hard, y’all, damn hard, and again, no sane person would do it without serious compensation.

What you get, in other words, is the same incentive structure as academia.  Tenured professors lead pretty cushy lives, as I’ve pointed out on numerous occasions, but those on the tenure track live like crap, and grad students, adjuncts, etc. are the pen-pushing equivalent of galley slaves.  You’d only get someone to do it if a) he really thought that brass ring at the end was worth it, or b) he had absolutely no other options.

Since folks in bucket b) are obnoxious to literally everyone, academia and journalism went all-in on a).  In other words, they made the whole thing about saving the world, taking action, influencing opinion, etc.

Thus, grossly biased idiots are a feature, not a bug, of the system.

This seems obvious, I know, but once again, sometimes in trying times it’s one’s duty to point out the obvious.  Plus, I got nothin’ these days.

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Judo with Karl

Marxism fails, we know, in large part because it sees people as nothing but producers — cells on the left side of the spreadsheet.  Marxism ignores race, culture, language, art…

A thought experiment:  What if we flipped Marx on his head?  What if, instead of a bland, deracinated slurry of producer-units, technology has made the modern proletariat into a bland, deracinated slurry of consumer-units?  Flip that one term, and doesn’t everything ol’ Karl said about The Revolution seem not just plausible, but correct?

History is just the story of the relations of the means of consumption.

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The New Old Left

The hardest thing to grasp about History is the pace of change.  The academic guild, it goes without saying, doesn’t bother trying, which is why questions like “Why was there no viable Socialist movement in America?” are still on the minds of so many professors (yes, there is an entire discipline called “Labor History” and yes, it is as excruciating as it sounds). To the layman, it’s obvious — Europeans were ok with being “the Proletariat” because of their millennium-long experience being “the Peasantry” — but as History professors have never met anyone outside the 1%….

Technology, though, has managed to proletarianize America fast enough to give Karl Marx a woody down in Hell.  Our proles may not seem beaten down and oppressed — as you may have noticed, their self-esteem is excellent — but look at the way financial companies can unperson you for your politics.  Hell, Netflix, Disney, et al are trying to unperson the entire state of Georgia for passing that abortion bill.  When corporations can effectively boycott their own consumers, Global Finance Capitalism is truly triumphant.

Which is why folks in Our Thing should give Onkel Karl’s scribblings another look.  Marxism is the world’s most successful just-so story.  Not least because it rings so true to life — Global Finance Capital really does control every aspect of your existence.  We’ve replaced the noblesse d’épée with the noblesse d’blue checkmark, but the Twitterati have more power than a medieval monarch could dream of.  When some blue-haired, nose-ringed persyn who can’t even figure out what pronoun to call xzhyrself today can ruin your life on a whim because xzhey stumbled across your Facebook page, the phrase Fiat justitia ruat caelum — roughly translated, “burn this entire motherfucker down!” — becomes wonderfully current.

The problem with Marxism — besides contingent falsity, of course — is that it doesn’t account for differences in culture.  Marxist “culture” (the wonderfully named proletkult, which describes every single thing you see and hear these days) is a slurry of several kinds of lowest common denominator.  We’d have to find a way to modify Marx’s teachings to accommodate social and cultural factors… a kind of national Marxism, if you will… but I’m sure someone somewhere has thought of all that.

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Misunderstanding the Civil War

There’s no such thing as a “popular” revolution.

Indeed, since the Opposite Rule of Liberalism never fails, you can be sure that the louder the Revolutionaries talk about The People, the higher up the food chain they, the Revolutionaries, actually are.  Pick any “people’s” movement you like.  Just off the top of my head, you’ve got Mao, Kim, and Lenin (sons of the minor nobility or equivalent); Castro and Che (failed law student and failed medical student, respectively); Abimael Guzman (philosophy professor; of course his movement was psychopathically violent even by Communist standards); all the way back to Marx and Engels themselves (a failed philosophy professor from a long line of rabbis and the son of a factory owner, respectively).  Hell, take it all the way back to the first true Revolutionary, Oliver Cromwell — he talked a good game about the rights of Englishmen, did that descendant of Henry VIII’s chief minister, but he ended up as England’s first military dictator since the Romans ran the place….

But that’s boring, because we’ve seen the same show far too many times.  The interesting ones are the so-called “conservative” revolutions — the ones by the Elite, for the Elite, against another segment of the Elite, in the name of the Elite.  So far as I know, there have been only three of them: The two American Revolutions (1775-1783 and 1861-5), and the Meiji Restoration.  Let’s focus on the Second American Revolution, as it’s the most relevant to our times.

They don’t teach it this way in college (for obvious reasons), but the Civil War was a revolt of the Elites.  Put polemically, but not unfairly, The American People were offered four choices for President in 1860:

  1. tacitly pro-slavery;
  2. pro-slavery;
  3. fanatically pro-slavery; or
  4. fuck you.

These were embodied by John Bell, Stephen A. Douglas, John C. Breckinridge, and Abraham Lincoln, respectively, but the names on the tickets really didn’t matter, because it all boiled down to two options: Some flavor of politics as usual, or fuck you.  And here’s the important part:  The vast, vast majority of the country voted for politics as usual.  “Fuck you” got 39.82% of the vote, which by my math means that 60% of a country that would soon be conducting the largest military mobilization yet seen in the history of warfare wanted things to keep going as they were.

In fact, it’s worse than that.  As much as I hate to credit him with anything, Barack Obama was right — He truly was a Lincolnesque figure, in that Lincoln was vague to the point of incoherence about his origins, aims, and platform, too.  A vote for Lincoln wasn’t a vote for disunion; it was a thumb in Dixie’s eye, no more.  In other words, it was a vote to put the ball in the South’s court — an electoral-college version of the double dog dare.  We voted for “none of the above,” pro-slavery people, now whatcha gonna do about it?

We know the answer — they haven’t yet forbidden us from teaching the fact that secession happened sorta-kinda-quasi democratically — but for obvious reasons they don’t teach that the secession conventions were all rigged in favor of the fire-eaters, and even then the motions barely passed.  Which, again, means that “politics as usual” was nearly the default position of guys specifically summoned to discuss ending politics as usual.  If you want to say that the Civil War was started by about twenty guys nobody’s ever heard of, with names like “Louis T. Wigfall” and “Laurence M. Keitt,” you won’t hear much argument from me.

Since this is the Internet, and therefore the merest mention of the Unpleasantness of the Mid-19th Century makes everyone lose their shit, I’ll spell out my point: Though the Great National Divorce was already well advanced by 1860, and most Americans, North and South, were spoiling for a nasty custody fight, it took lots of detailed, coordinated action by a group of fanatically dedicated Elites to actually get it started. Guys like Maxcy Gregg, who wanted secession specifically so he could go kill him some Yankees, and Edmund Ruffin, who actually fired the first shot at Ft. Sumter.

And since ditto, I’ll further elaborate: This isn’t some alt-history, neo-Confederate fantasy about the CSA peacefully coexisting with the Yankee Empire.  The fight was gonna happen, and it was gonna be nasty no matter what (the phrase “nasty custody fight” is redundant; there’s no other kind).  But the specific form the fight took, its precise timing, was almost entirely due to the conscious, deeply cogitated decisions of specific men….

…..the very men who had the most to lose if their decisions turned out to be wrong.  Sound like anyone we know?

History’s second rep is always a farce, remember?  Just like in 1860, it won’t be the Republicans who start the shooting.  It won’t be The People, and it sure as hell won’t be the “Alt-Right,” or whatever we’re calling it now, who when it comes to action are far less real and effective than the Ineffectual Dork Web crowd they so love to mock.  It’s the other guys who will do it — the entrenched Elite, the people with everything to lose, who will for some unfathomable reason stake everything they have on the outside chance of getting a little more.  Slap a big fire-eater beard on Peter Strzok — there’s your modern Wigfall, Keitt, Ruffin, whatever.  The Opposite Rule of Liberalism, remember?  I’m not at all worried that Trump will launch a bloody coup if he loses the 2020 election; I’m terrified that Joe Biden will.

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The Man of the Hour

It’s fun to noodle over “theories” of History.

Academics, of course, are all in on “social” explanations of historical phenomena.  Being weak, ineffective people themselves, with no experience of life, the very idea of a Caesar frightens and repels them… so they construct theories of History in which it is impossible for a Caesar to exist.  On this view, “social forces” (what they used to call “the relations of the means of production”) tore the Roman Republic apart; the Empire was its inevitable next stage.  Assign whatever name you like to the Imperator — whether Caesar, Marius, Sulla, or Miles Gloriosus, he’s just the temporary face of the vast, impersonal social forces that control our fate.  None of this “History is just the biographies of great men” for them!

The eggheads have a point, though, albeit not the one they think they’re making.  The Roman elite’s social system was designed to produce a certain type of man.  Whether Gaius Julius Caesar was personally the embodiment of that system, or a perversion of it, is irrelevant — the system was designed to produce men like Caesar, fellows with a very particular set of skills.  Eggheads have never seen one, but anyone who has kicked around the world outside the ivory tower for a bit has met that type of guy.  The skills themselves are fairly common, at least in embryo.  Whether a potential Caesar becomes actual might well be merely a question of opportunity and scale.

A terrifying notion, that, when you look around the modern West.  The one characteristic all effective elites have in common is the self-knowledge that they are the elite.  The British, for instance, thought nothing of sending some 19 year old kid, whose slim formal education was mostly Latin and Greek, off to govern the Punjab.  It worked, largely because that kid, whatever his defects of intellect and ability, had character, of the kind you just don’t get without a pedigree stretching back to Hastings.

Again, if you’ve ever met one of the horsey set you know what I’m talking about.  If you haven’t, the most accessible American equivalents are the sons and grandsons of career army officers.  Think of Lieutenant Dan in Forrest Gump, as played by Gary Sinise in the movie.  That kind of guy always completes the mission, or dies trying, because it’s simply unthinkable that he won’t.  After five generations, West Point is in his DNA…

… but that’s the thing: West Point isn’t West Point, and hasn’t been for at least thirty years now.  This kid went to Ranger school, did a tour in Afghanistan, and was commissioned in the 10th Mountain division after graduating from West Point.  In case you don’t feel like clicking, he’s the kid who took selfies with a Che Guevara shirt under his cadet grays and “communism will win” scribbled on the inside of his hat.  Note the timeline:  The kid was commissioned after those selfies made the Internet rounds.  He still graduated, and for a time was an active-duty officer in the United States Army.

Bad as that is, there’s much worse.  Notice the passivity of it all.  What were any of the parties involved trying to accomplish?  If Cadet Che had wanted to get kicked out of the service (as it seems finally happened, according to the linked article), there are a million easier ways.  In fact, cadets at West Point are volunteers.  The Army makes a big production out of this: If you can’t hack it at the Point, you’re simply not officer material.  All it takes is a letter to the commandant, and you’re out — Cadet Che could’ve been drinking beer with his fraternal socialist comrades at Big State 24 hours after turning in his resignation.

Even the kid’s form of “protest” was passive.  There’d be a certain utility, I suppose, for the Revolution if the kid had written “I’m a Communist sleeper agent” on the inside of his hat — evidently our standards are so lax that we don’t do basic background checks on our potential military officers.  But he didn’t write that.  Instead, he wrote “Communism will win,” a passive, bloodless statement … and that’s it.

The passivity is the truly terrifying part.  A West Point graduate is among the elite if anyone is — he has command of at least a platoon of heavily armed trained killers, and the radio one of them carries has the power to call in armor, air strikes, cruise missiles… and yet, not “I’m a communist,” not “¡Viva la Revolución!,” not even “Lenin lives!”  Just… “communism will win.”  How, comrade?

The Rotten Chestnuts archives, like the archives of our parent site, are filled with mentions of modern Americans’ weird fixation with the passive voice.  It’s Liberalism’s go-to tactic — it’s never “I propose a code of conduct;” it’s always “there should be a code of conduct.”  Always “Such-and-such might be perceived as offensive;” never “Jane might be offended.”  It’s always someone else, somewhere out there, who is doing and saying — or, crucially, should do or should say.  Even on the rare occasions where they propose specific actions by named individuals, they always make sure it can’t actually happen.  Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s “Green New Deal” springs to mind — because she’s so very, very stupid, she actually put in in a bill, so everyone in the Democratic Party had to make the rounds of the Sunday shout shows to denounce actually voting on proposed legislation, also known as Congress’s sole legitimate function, as dirty pool.

What we have, in short, is an elite that has convinced itself it loathes the very concept of elitism.  They’ll lecture you endlessly on what superior people they are, but will never actually show you, even when it’s the easiest thing in the world.  I know I keep banging on about college towns, but they’re the perfect example of the phenomenon.  The hard Left controls everything in a college town.  See, for instance, Berkeley, California.  Any college town in America could do all that, plus some, with little more than a vote in the faculty senate.  Yet they never do, and it’s not just hypocrisy — yes, yes, Big State doesn’t offer to take in “refugees,” but I guarantee you they more than tolerated that “Occupy ___” nonsense back in the days.  Remember that?  Whatever happened to all those people camping out in city parks, anyway?  Am I the only guy in America who remembers shit that happened less than a decade ago?  Is this thing even on?

The point is, a culture can survive an incompetent elite for quite a while; it can’t survive a self-loathing one.  This is because the Great Man theory of History, like everything in history, always comes back around.  History is full of men whose society doesn’t acknowledge them as elite, but who know themselves to be such.  Napoleon, for instance, and isn’t it odd that as much as both sides, Left and Right, seem to be convinced that some kind of Revolution is coming, you can scour all their writings in vain for one single mention of Bonaparte?

That’s because Napoleon was a Great Man, possibly the Great Man — a singularly talented genius, preternaturally lucky, whose very particular set of skills so perfectly matched the needs of the moment.  There’s no “social” explanation for Napoleon, and that’s why nobody mentions him — the French Revolution ends with the Concert of Europe, and in between was mumble mumble something War and Peace.  The hour really did call forth the man, in large part, I argue, because the Directory was full of men who were philosophically opposed to the very idea of elitism, and couldn’t bear to face the fact that they themselves were the elite.

Since our elite can’t produce able leaders of itself, it will be replaced by one that can.  When our hour comes — and it is coming, far faster than we realize — what kind of man will it call forth?

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Join the Democrats

It occurs to me that we’ve got a great opportunity for in-person meetups right under our noses: The Democratic Party.

Those of us who remember the 1980s had a good laugh at the campaign of alleged right-wing nativist extremist maniac uber-Republican Ted Cruz, who would’ve been a fairly conventional centrist Democrat as late as 1988.  Commie rags like Mother Jones and The Nation have surely purged their paper archives in true Stalinist style, but the internet is forever — it wouldn’t be hard, I imagine, to find all sorts of articles from big-name Lefties arguing for things near and dear to our hearts: Closed borders, protective tariffs, the breakup of Big Tech monopolies….

In short, since “the Working Man” is now code for “White people,” recasting ourselves as Friends of the Working Man — as all good Democrats once pretended to be — is a no-brainer, organization-wise.  Hell, even Hillary Clinton — as out and proud an oligarch as you’ll find this side of Cosimo de Medici — made a few token gestures about the Plight of the Working Class in between jetting off to $10,000 a plate fundraisers.  The Left dropped Socialism the minute they realized stuff like lower drug prices would benefit Badwhites, but they left a paper trail nearly a century long.  All we have to do is pick it up.

Please note: This isn’t some hypothetical gas about DR3*.  It’s purely a tactical move.  Most party organizations in most places, I imagine, run skeleton crews outside of election years.  The Democratic Party Booster Club of [town name] would be a perfect way for us to get together.  All you have to do is pass the hat once a month, to raise a modest “speaker’s fee” for some flunky in the city government, or some Poli-Sci dweeb from the local junior college, to come in and give a speech, “with reception to follow.”  Once the speaker hightails it out — which should be soon, as blue-haired nose-ringers tend to di di mau when faced with a room of White guys — we’re free to discuss all sorts of interesting things that would benefit our fellows… as are written in the Scriptures, circa 1987.  Surely no one can object to a “study circle” focusing on the work of, say, David Corn….

 

*”Democrats R tha Real Racists,” for you older folks who don’t speak Internet.
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The Pre-Crime Department

As it seems I’m auditioning for the role of Our Thing’s E.M. Cioran, let’s talk about things to come.

We all broadly agree that “race is real,” by which is meant — again, broadly — that 1) certain mental and behavioral tendencies are strongly heritable.  We also broadly agree that 2) society’s current trajectory is unsustainable, because it takes a certain suite of strongly heritable tendencies, IQ and high future time orientation being the most prominent, to keep an advanced technological society going — tendencies which, obviously, the Replacement Population currently flooding over our borders doesn’t have.  Finally, we broadly agree on 3) what they called “degeneration” back at the turn of the 20th century (the last time we were allowed to speak on such topics): That this advanced technological society is, itself, destroying the tendencies necessary for its maintenance, by easing or eliminating the evolutionary pressures that produced them.

So: What to do about it?

Let’s leave the nightmare scenarios of apocalyptic collapse aside for the moment (see below).  Let’s also set aside Ray Kurzweil-ish speculations about widespread genetic engineering and the robot future.  Let’s treat the givens as given — we have such-and-such a population now; they are what they are right now; and thanks to all the stuff we broadly agreed on above, technological innovation is pretty much dead in the water (what, you think Jose, Prajneet, and Kunta Kinte are going to invent the gene editing kiosks?).  Let’s stipulate that we’re working with what we have on hand.

Starting from the top: Technological progress has flatlined, or will shortly, as thanks to 2 and 3, above, the necessary tendencies aren’t being inherited in sufficient numbers.  Since that’s the case, whatever’s left of “free enterprise” will quickly be co-opted by the state.  If you’ve only got five engineers where you used to have fifty, those five guys will need to keep every brain cell firing just to maintain what we have — any “innovation” will involve streamlining existing processes for an ever-dumber workforce.

Therefore: Do we have reliable, widely-available genetic tests for IQ and high future time orientation?  If we do, we can go ahead and implement the caste system now.  But if we don’t, and I don’t think we do, then the educational system will need a complete redesign to help ferret them out.  I know, I know, but you’re not gonna like this one: Instead of endless self-esteem and sex ed classes, you’ll need a Prussian-looking system that’s all-STEM, all the time.  Note carefully our stipulations: Since the suite of necessary tendencies is rare, and getting rarer, we’re doing all this to discover (let’s say) 25% of the population.

What happens to the other 75%?

Since we’ve already stipulated that the only issue that matters is maintaining the technological infrastructure we have, and so we’re willing to do what it takes to find future techies in the cradle, the other 75% are, at best, support staff.  But since we’re running on the assumption that society requires certain heritable traits to keep going — and that we can test for them — the only logical thing to do is to ruthlessly select against the other traits, while we find something useful for the current crop of Marching Morons to do.  We already have industrial-scale applications for Marching Morons — fruit pickers, meat packers, and the like.  How scalable are those, and how early do we need to start?

(Note that the process could be streamlined still further if we cut out the middleman — that is, if instead of the State taking over the Big Tech companies, the Big Tech companies take over the State.  If you dig the thought of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez setting your kids’ curriculum, you’re gonna love Mark Zuckerberg’s syllabus.  The other industrial-scale app for Marching Morons is, of course, the infantry, and while I’m sure the Jack Dorsey Division could settle Al Qaeda’s hash over in The Sandbox, I imagine Jack himself might insist on deploying them a little closer to home).

The culture will need a complete overhaul, too, since it’s obvious to all but the die-hard HBD True Believers (alas, something like 90% of Our Thing at last count) that biology and culture have a dialectical relationship.  Biology is prior, I’ll grant you — the best-designed culture in the world isn’t going to turn a bunch of Congolese into a nation of rocket scientists — but culture is a major influence nonetheless.  See, for example, the African-American population.

When Daniel Patrick Moynihan was writing The Negro Family: The Case for National Action all the way back in 1965, it was obvious that huge programs designed to help the Black community had had the opposite result.  Welfare encourages bastardy single parenthood, and single parenthood is closely correlated with just about every social pathology negative life outcome there is.*  Black Americans were indisputably better off, on just about any metric that makes sense, before programs like The Great Society….

…that is, in the era of Jim Crow.

It seems, then, that a monolithic culture, imposed from the top and ruthlessly enforced, can ameliorate, if not outright eliminate, a lot of bad heritable tendencies.  Not a lot of rocket scientists came from the Jim Crow South, I’ll grant you, but Clarence Thomas did, as did Thomas Sowell. If you’re looking for role models for the non-techie 75%, you could do a lot worse… and does anyone really believe that Thomas and Sowell would be who they are if they’d been born in the Great Society?

Lest we be tempted to the sin of race essentialism, note that it works just as well on White people.  The Soviets actually did a lot of the stuff I’m suggesting our future HBD-compliant state will do, and it worked — the USSR had way more engineers in 1957 than in 1917.  That it turned Ivan Sixpack into a low-IQ, low future time orientation, vodka-swilling oaf was a feature, not a bug, of the Soviet system, but it’s proof enough of the dialectical relationship between biology and culture.   Between the tackles, humanity is pretty plastic.  You might not be able to turn the Congolese into rocket scientists, but you can definitely turn Russians into modern-day cavemen.

Time being what it is, and demographics being what they are, ruthless imposition of “culture” at bayonet point is the only hope.

A final word: Some will no doubt say that I’m cheerleading for Fascism.  I’m not.  It’s abhorrent.  But History doesn’t care about our morality, let alone our preferences.  It is what it is, and no individual can stop it.  There may have been a “Dissident Rightist” in Rome in 410, who saw everything perfectly and had the perfect plan to fix it.  I make no such claims for myself, of course, but it wouldn’t matter if i did see everything perfectly and did have a foolproof plan — the barbarians were already at the gates.  What I’m talking about — “Bio-Fascism,” I guess you could call it — is repugnant, but in my “black pill” moments I’m convinced it’s actually the best-case scenario.  It’ll be an ugly couple of generations getting the DNA back up to snuff, but considering the alternatives….

 

 

*N.b. that’s from The Brookings Institution, the most wretched hive of Goodwhite virtue-signalling there is.  If they say single parenthood is “problematic,” it must really be the fucking apocalypse.

 

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