I believe in the right of free association.  All other “rights” — of free expression, to private property, etc. — derive from the right of free association.  The only stable form of human organization is the community.

I believe in justice, not Justice.  Only communities can decide what justice is, in and for their communities.  Any social organization larger than the community, which does not leave the administration of justice to the community, is tyranny.

I believe in the person, not the process.  The administration of abstract, universal “Justice” requires treating individual men as means, not ends.  Fealty to abstract “Justice” sees men not as individuals with their own needs, or as members of a sovereign community, but as the outcome of a mechanical, judicial process.

I believe in the fundamental value of the human person, not his fundamental worth.  All humans are equally valuable in God’s eyes, and communities must respect that value.  A man’s worth, however, is a function of his social role.  It is determined by his community.  Abstract “Justice” denies this, which is why attempts to administer it always end up focusing on equality of outcome.  This violates the right of free association, and is therefore tyranny.

I believe in evolution, also called “descent with modification.”  Abstract “Justice” denies this, because it presumes that all men are equally capable of understanding the Good.  Men have different capacities for understanding the good; these capacities are largely inherited.  Forcing “equal” outcomes on people who are incapable of understanding it is tyranny, as the rights of those capable of knowing and acting on the Good are necessarily violated thereby.

I believe in the value of Culture.  It is the duty of those more capable of knowing the Good to arrange matters in their communities to check the worst tendencies of those less capable.  Any attempt to do this outside the community is a violation of the right of free association, and therefore tyranny.

I believe in the fundamental autonomy of the individual.  A man who will not, or cannot, adapt himself to his community is free to find another.  If he cannot find another, he may form his own.  As Thomas Hobbes said, the end of virtue is to be sociable to those who would be social, and formidable to those who will not.  This is the position of the autonomous individual.  Every man has a right to free association with himself, if no other.  Any attempt to constrain this is tyranny.



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23 thoughts on “Credo

  1. MBlanc46

    We could tease each of those points apart to the end of time, but as stated, I can accept them all.

    1. Severian Post author

      Go ahead. You can treat them like Luther treated his 95 theses — as the starting point for a reasonable discussion among learned men. Or you can treat them like Lutherans treated the 95 Theses…

      1. Pickle Rick

        David Hackett Fisher identified four separate ideas of liberty in late 18th century America, corresponding to the four regions and cultures he posits in his earlier book “Albion’s Seed”.
        That is, the Roman patrician liberty of Virginia’s upper class, the communal liberties of Puritan descended New England, dissenting liberties of Quaker/Palatine German Pennsylvania, and the individualist-clan loyalty of the Ulster Scots in the backcountry-rattlesnake liberty.

        1. Severian Post author

          It seems, then, that “liberty” itself is one of those community-derived standards. No Justice, only justice; no Liberty; only liberty.

          I for one am perfectly ok with this. In fact, that’s one of the things I was trying to get at. If people want to live in a “security uber alles” police state — as so many of our fellow “Americans” seem to — then they should. I’ve been arguing (at least implicitly) for a long time that “liberty” is a meaningless term to Basic College Girls and urban bugmen. How could it be otherwise? If you can’t buy it, fuck it, and post about it on social media, then it’s not real to them. That’s their community, and long may they enjoy it. I’m sure they have a word for their lifestyle that is as meaningless to me as “liberty” is to them… and that’s fine. We just don’t belong in the same civil society together.

          1. Pickle Rick

            You know as well as I do that they will never let us escape them. Their ideological ancestors immolated the country in a bloody civil war rather than let Southerners leave. Their hubris won’t allow us a moment’s peace, let alone our own community, culture, or liberties.

  2. Brit in London

    Long-time lurker (up your count to 25 readers at least!)

    All of the above hinges on the definition of “community” and if we all are thinking of the same thing with that word. What does it mean to you?

    1. Severian Post author

      That’s why these are a starting point for reasonable discussion. The answers to your question are bound to be… interesting.

    2. texinole

      I take it to mean Severian is aggressively advocating for Safe Spaces. /sarc

      Taken to mean “Nation”, it rather undermines the ardent Nationalist’s core ethos, given what tyranny our Nation is increasingly proving capable of, no? /not sarc

      Though like most things I’ve read here (I’m the 19th reader fwiw) I agree…I think.

      1. Severian Post author

        That’s why these are here – to stimulate reasonable discussion among learned men. What does “nation” even mean in an postindustrial world?

        We keep falling into old thought patterns, to where it seems like our only available choices to think about these things are “the Westphalian nation-state” and “the soulless, rootless cosmopolitanism of Globohomo.” It’s a crisis of foundations. Time to start re-thinking the foundations.

        1. texinole

          My answer has remained the same since the day it struck me as truth (not necessarily proud of that btw): decentralize political power as much as possible, allowing the potential for thousands or millions of small, largely escape-able tyrannies whose enforcers will live in the community and therefore be somewhat accountable to it. But that alone does not progress human civilization, since it basically describes feudal organization for millennia past.

          It must be coupled with teaching and championing individual liberty, as well as (here’s the real hard part) violently defending encroachments at every turn. Natural inertia, the client-agent problem, the natural and admirable human tendency to abhor and fear violence among other things prevents this from being a realistic basis for a society outside a few prominent exceptions.

          Unfortunately since our enemy controls education soup-to-nuts an already difficult proposition is, in truth, impossible. We’re still living off the fat from our Founder’s kill, and will yet for some decades I’d guess, but the party will eventually end.

  3. Maus

    Community, aye there’s the rub. I’d have no problem adhering to your creed as an abstraction; but I worry that postmodern relativism has made concepts like community as slippery as justice or liberty. The source of that relativism is manifold: identity politics and the cult of victimhood; as you noted, the materialist culture of hedonism and consumerism; the destruction of the family as the primary unit of social organization; and the toxic promotion of disparate treatment in the impossible pursuit of egalitarianism. All these have worked like acid on the human bonds that make community possible, resulting in an overwhelming personal sense of alienation and isolation.
    I don’t have a universal antidote. Indeed, I’ve come to believe that striving for anything “universal” is fundamentally a flawed, utopian pursuit. What I do see as worth pursuing is starting small. Revisit the practice of sitting down as a family to dinner more often than not. Introduce yourself to immediate neighbors front, back and sides to share a coffee or a lawn mower or advice on the best time to plant roses. If you find a newly met person trusdtworthy in small things, risk a greater commitment. If, however, you find them objectionable — whether morally so or just too difficult to bridge cultural gaps — bid them farewell peaceably and move on. In general, what I’m advocating is application of ghe principle of subsidiarity. Don’t work at a higher level of social organization than the one necessary to accomplishing the task at hand. This “pandemic” has exposed the danger of relying on Big Daddy Government to solve all our problems and take away all our fears.

  4. Severian Post author

    @Pickle Rick,

    that’s why this Kung Flu thing has been so interesting. Is there any fighting spirit left? Would they really fight if we just… walked? Given how readily our fellow “Americans” have rolled over, I’m seriously starting to wonder. Outside of a few nests of cranks like us, the people who are mad at the government are mad that Trump didn’t become enough of a dictator, soon enough. They think the Feds should assign hall monitors to wipe their asses and protect them from the sniffles. Would they really put up any kind of fight?

      1. Pickle Rick

        Sev, you’ve always said today’s SJW is one step away from a gruppenfuhrer (although The Nerd’s Black Cats were far more than ideological fanatics-they had to be physically awesome too, but calling the modern totalitarians “Chekists” simply doesn’t convey the same understanding).

        Yes, they would fight tooth and nail to keep their boot on our necks, simply because they can’t bear the thought of us escaping their dystopia. And they don’t have to do it themselves, because there’s more than enough militarized cops dutifully enforcing the most insane batshit diktats from Governors Becky, Coonman and my own goggle eyed bugman in Harrisburg. Think that the cucked National Guard won’t be “personing” checkpoints if they get orders? There ain’t no Bobby Lees wearing uniforms much anymore. Maybe this might wake up normiecons who’ve been dick riding our “heroes in uniform” since around 1991 that the organs of repression can be bought and paid for.

  5. Vizzini

    OK, I’ll take on the evolution bit as it is something where I usually find myself outside both of the big “camps.”

    The camps seem to be:

    1a (standard humanist leftist). Belief in Darwinian evolution as a materialist explanation for the origin and evolution of the species, and as a kick in the teeth to all those crazy losers and their sky gods … but all humans are pretty much equal from an evolutionary standpoint. There are no really meaningful evolutionary differences among the races and why are you calling them races, hater, because races are just social constructs. Racism is the greatest of evils.

    1b (a pretty small group — a lot of HBDers). Belief in Darwinian evolution as a materialist explanation for the origin and evolution of the species, and as a kick in the teeth to all those crazy losers and their sky gods. The races of man are real and they have real biological differences that give them different strengths, weaknesses and capabilities.

    2a (mainstream leftist Churchianity). God created the cosmos, humans are a special creation of God and evolution is a false explanation for the origin of man and other species. All humans, being create by God are special creatures, equal in his eyes. Racism is the greatest of evils.

    2b (fundamentalist nationalist Christians). God created the cosmos, humans are a special creation of God and evolution is a false explanation for the origin of man and other species. God created the different races of man differently, with different strengths, weaknesses and capabilities.

    Me. God created the cosmos, humans are a special creation of God. But, the fundamentals of evolution are obviously true: Natural selection exists, because it’s an obvious tautology: what survives survives. “Fittest” is a post hoc justification. That does not, however, lessen the fact that clearly some gene combinations survive, others do not and that this causes changes — “evolution” — in the species. Mutation is, likewise, obviously true. We observe it in current life. However, mutation and natural selection are woefully inadequate explanations for the origin of life and the diversity of the species, so the idea that it there is a guided process involved isn’t outrageous as a theory. Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic: God isn’t a supernatural God, just a God operating at a sufficiently advanced level of natural processes that we don’t understand it. The races of man are real and they have real biological differences that give them different strengths, weaknesses and capabilities.

    I think there is adequate evidence in both science and scripture to say that different races and tribes of man have real differences. In fact, in the Bible, the differences between tribes and nations are like the water the writers swim in — it is regarded as so obvious that it is rarely remarked upon. Samaritans are not Judeans are not Corinthians. Likewise, individual men are not created equal. Not every man is a potential brain surgeon who simply lacked the upbringing and education to raise him to that level. This seems as if it would be incredibly obvious to anyone who has spent much time interacting with humans in the real world.

    At the bottom line, it doesn’t really matter to me whether individuals and races evolved to be different or were created that way. They are different, and since I believe you can only build a successful structure by having a realistic understanding of your materials, any successful society has to take into account the inherent differences of people groups, while also acknowledging that outliers exist and being able to accommodate them, as well.

    Despite what all the acolytes of multi-culturalism say, people are most comfortable among their own kind. I’ve seen this proven true in every corporate and college cafeteria, and conference lunch break I’ve ever attended. Fighting against that reality is futile. People groups need spaces to be themselves and exist in a way and at a level that is comfortable for them. Forced mixing causes friction.

    Envy is among the most fundamental of sins. Of the Biblical ten commandments, five deal with envy in one form or another — theft, adultery and various forms of covetousness are all forms of envy — wanting what someone else has. In the New Testament, the parable of the workers in the vineyard (Matthew 20:1-16) is a polemic against envy. Among great leaders in the Old Testament — Saul, David, Solomon — envy, coveting what another has, was frequently among their fatal flaws.

    Friction over inequality is envy at a societal scale, and I’d wager nothing has brought down more societies.

    Severian pointed out envy as a key exploitable weakness in the basic college girl (BCG) the other day.

    But that sin is baked in to humanity. How do you fight it? How do you deal with it? Simply pointing it in a useful direction seems like a short term solution. Are we cursed to keep having to wrestle that bucking firehose in our midst forever? Is there any system that actually keeps it under control? I don’t have that answer.

  6. neal

    Any system that could manage manifest defects would need to be precognitive/superluminal.
    Three dimensions of Time with an Spatial arrow as a placebo search function.
    Of course that would seem like an enemy to modern machine thinking.
    I heard somewhere that the adjustment of the initial constants of this place is always a work in progress, and tends to sample the results from time to time.
    Most that come back only do so in pieces.
    The rest stink on ice, as it were.

  7. Frip

    No biggy, but could this passage be reconstructed without the concept/word “God”? I understand it’s your personal Credo. Just thinking of it having a broader appeal. For me, and others. Again, no biggy. I can live with it either way.

    Sev: “I believe in the fundamental value of the human person, not his fundamental worth. All humans are equally valuable in God’s eyes, and communities must respect that value.”

      1. Frip

        “I believe in the fundamental value of a man’s soul, and his right to sign it away. All men are valuable in the eyes of our sweet Satan, and communities must respect His will.”

  8. james wilson

    In the bad old days of segregation there was a black middle-upper middle class. They indeed performed the duties you describe. The black middle class today is the result of special dispensations distributed by their progressive rulers, and bonus points for obliterating all that was real. They are as relevant as the college educated white girl in HR interferring with work getting done.

    The freedom to associate means nothing without the freedom to not associate.

  9. Frip

    Sev: “I believe in the fundamental autonomy of the individual. A man who will not, or cannot, adapt himself to his community is free to find another.”

    I like how the Credo smoothly reverses what our recieved notions are about various values. Exposing, or getting to the heart of, what the value’s true meaning should actually look like in practice. In the above example, we’d normally think that if we prize individuality, then we have to make way for the individual. But screw that. In other words…if you’re too cool for school…don’t come to our school. No one’s forcing you.

    Related point. As Sev did above, it’s smart for our side to use the typically Prog concept of “free”, against Prog himself.

    “It is the duty of those more capable of knowing the Good to arrange matters in their communities to check the worst tendencies of those less capable.”

    Agree. And everyone agrees. Heirarchy. Elite supervision. Elitism. It’s unavoidably the only way. Everywhere and always. Tolerable within smaller communities. As is the point of the Credo. State’s rights. Etc. But yeah, the wording makes elite rule sound so reasonable, so benign. Well done.

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