Part I here.
He’s more machine than man now, twisted and evil.
World War I left Western Civilization emotionally adrift. What was all that horror for? Nobody seemed to know, and the few explanations offered — stopping German militarism; the self-determination of peoples — were sick jokes in the face of 17 million dead. Any answer to Man’s eternal question — what’s the meaning of life? — had to account for the Somme, too.
For a lot of people, only Marxism fit the bill. You’ll recall that Marxism is the most anthropocentric doctrine ever preached. Its goal is literally heaven on earth. Marx’s writings are light on descriptions of the stateless communist world, but everyone who read him agreed that whatever it was, it would be utopia. Better yet, the means to achieve this seemed to be in our grasp. Lenin made a simple, seemingly irrefutable point: If the tools of industrial capitalism could produce everything needed to slaughter 17 million men over four years, it should be child’s play to produce all the material goods needed to free everyone, everywhere, from want. This is such a seductive idea that even George Orwell fell for it — the “defense of socialism” section in The Road to Wigan Pier is some of the barmiest, though best-written, moonbattery you’ll ever see.
Moreover, Marxism promised a return to our “natural,” healthy emotional state. The Frankfurt School used Freud’s insights to argue that capitalism is responsible for all of mankind’s mental problems. Just as the slaughter in the trenches was the necessary outcome of imperialism, so the blind, mute, paralyzed shell shock case was the ultimate alienation. Eliminate social classes, they argued, and you’ll eliminate all the unnatural stresses of capitalism. And just as the World War showed this was materially possible, the experience of Woodrow Wilson’s “war socialism,” like American Progressivism in general, showed it was politically possible.
Advanced industrial technique to produce a free, happy, and whole Man: That’s Marxism-Leninism in a nutshell. Given unlimited power to fine-tune the social machine, guys like V.I. Lenin could produce utopia in the near future. Tweak the little machines that people are, and you’ll tweak the big machine that society is; adjust society, and you’ll adjust people. They act reciprocally — dialectically, says the ghost of Karl Marx — to make heaven on earth.
And, of course, this works. Lenin was a huge admirer of Ivan Pavlov (unreciprocated, to Pavlov’s eternal credit), but you don’t need salivating dogs to know that man-as-machine works pretty darn well — we capitalists have decisively proven it, with this zillion-dollar industry called advertising. We all agree that indoctrination in schools is a smashing success. Everyone in America thinks that media bias is pervasive, egregious, and totally effective. People, it seems, are almost infinitely manipulable.
None of this excuses Marx, Lenin, et al. But it’s important to understand why they thought the way they did. It’s the same reason lots of people today still think this way: It works, very effectively, quite often. It’s not perfect, but… who’s to say it never will be? Machines aren’t perfect, either, but they can be improved quite a bit before you hit absolute physical constraints like the Laws of Thermodynamics. We’ve only got 100 years of data, and the Soviet Union was hardly an ideal laboratory.
But notice what we’ve done here. We’ve been proceeding as if Man is nothing but a machine, in the same way Darwin’s apes (if not necessarily Darwin himself) proceeded as if Man is nothing but an animal. And that has horrific consequences.
The goal of Marxism-Leninism, as we’ve said, is to produce utopia by scientific adjustments to the social machine. But machines don’t have feelings, or goals, or desires, or free will, or souls. Society isn’t composed of little machines; like Soylent Green, it’s made of people. In its pursuit of utopia, Socialism utterly discounts the needs of real, living people for the benefits of possible future people. You can’t make an omelet without breaking some eggs, as the sickeningly facile phrase goes…. but breaking eggs by no means guarantees that the omelet is going to get made.
Socialism, in other words, sees people (except Socialists, of course) as means to an end. And that view depends, utterly depends, on seeing people in the abstract — just animals, just machines, just producer-units or consumer-units on a giant spreadsheet. If you make a mistake on a spreadsheet, you don’t feel bad about deleting the cell, do you? And if a machine breaks, you either repair it or you throw it away. Do you worry about the morality of taking a hammer to a loose nail? Of course not! And if your goldfish dies, it’s down the toilet, no?
And that’s the problem with HBD.
Human biodiversity is obviously true to the extent that evolution is true. It has to be, unless you believe, as Science’s deep-thinking BFFs on the Left claim to, that evolution applies to all living organisms but humans. Organisms that evolve in radically different environments develop dramatically different traits; it’s why platypuses aren’t elephants.
But evolution isn’t morality. Evolution is utterly amoral. Claiming that one group is, on average, smarter than another — though it’s indisputably true — says nothing about how individuals should interact.
How trite, I’m sure you’re saying. Everybody knows that!
Except they don’t. The biggest proponents of HBD on the Alt-Right are the Pick-Up Artists, and PUA’s whole deal is using the universally applicable tricks of advertising to get laid. In getting laid, they’re spreading the gospel that it’s ok to use people as means to an end, and they’re citing science to do it. After all, nobody would say that a lesser chimpanzee mimicking the behavior of an alpha male in order to mate is acting immorally, would they? That chimp is just doing what chimps do, because there is no morality in nature….
…In fact, if you insist on putting morality in nature where it doesn’t belong, the PUA is in fact more moral than others. Consider that sneaky mating strategies like the faux-alpha chimp are common — indeed, necessary — in the animal kingdom. Take Squirty up there. Anonymous Conservative cites the Giant Australian Cuttlefish as one example of how r-strategists are made. Only the biggest and toughest cuttlefish can mate in the normal way, so some non-dominant males have evolved a very sneaky strategy: They change their color patterns so that they look like females. They sneak into a group of females waiting to mate, then pounce. The result is that some weak-but-sneaky cuttlefish genes propagate, while some strong-but-dumb cuttlefish genes don’t.
When this strategy works correctly — as it does, all across the animal kingdom — you get a nice balance. The strong-but-dumb and the weak-but-clever complement each other, and the whole group thrives. If only the strong-but-dumb ever bred, the group would be strong, all right… for a while. But its members would be too stupid to live, and they’d die out just as surely as they would if all group members were weak-but-clever. Using HBD scripts to pick up chicks, then, raises the aggregate IQ in the urban jungle, contributing far more to the success of the human species in a high-tech environment than strong-but-dumb jocks ever could.
In America, 2015, we can ignore the deeply dis-civic implications of this attitude, because we still have enough accumulated cultural capital — plus actual capital capital — to avoid widespread scarcity. But that won’t last long, and when it does, the temptation to use people as means to an end is going to be overwhelming. And it’ll be the so-called Alt-Right putting people in camps, Lenin-style.