Sunday, December 24, 2017

Merry Christmas

Firstly, I'd like to wish all my readers a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

It's been a year of mixed blessings and I must admit that some of them have put me in a bit of a funk. Over here in Australia, the country overwhelmingly voted in favor of the legal recognition of Same Sex Marriage. The Euthanasia Laws were passed in my home state and the lack of any coherent response by the "Right" reinforced its impotence. Right "victories" were non existent.

Globally, the war in Syria seems to have taken a turn for the better with the intervention of Putin, but on the other hand there wasn't much else. Trump hasn't really been doing much "winning", the U.K. still hasn't left the EU. Poland is being hassled by Germany the EU, Europe's demographic disaster continues. North Korea continues to develop its nukes with China's covert blessing and a showdown there is eventually going to happen. As for the the economy of the West...tick, tick, tick.

Culturally, the Dissident Right seems to have lost some of its steam with neoreaction going particularly quiet. From my perspective the Dissident Right seems to be aimless and drifting at the moment. On the bright side,  the cabal sympathetic to Richard Spencer seems to have lost a lot of its clout and presence on the dissident forums. This is a good thing.

I'm all for slogging things out when the going is hard but the lack of meaningful victories is demoralising and I suspect that this may have contributed to my chronic writer's block. Though I haven't written, I've tried to be productive in my reading. I've particularly gained an appreciation of the Protestant author Grant Havers and his concept of Political Charity, more on this in later posts. I'm also really enjoying Eugene Weber's histories late 19th C.  France, especially the process of its "Modernisation". They've changed my thinking with regard to the nature of the Managerial's not going away. And I've just started Corelli Barnett's, The Collapse of British Power and its seems very, very good.

Correlli Barnett's, Audit of War was hugely influential in my thinking and its surprising to myself that I've not read more of his work. Barnett is not Aspergy and is not looking for the "one thing" that explains it all, recognising that other factors are important. Still, something things are more important than others and its surprising that a military historian such as Barnett lays most of the blame of Britain's collapse ultimately at Evangelical Protestantism, and its atheist offspring, Enlightened Humanism:

It follows that a study of the decay of British power between 1918 and 1940 and of its collapse between 1940 and 1945 cannot be adequately conducted within the confines of military history, nor, for that matter, of political or economic history. This book therefore ranges from religion to technology; from education to foreign policy; from literature to grand strategy. Yet throughout the narrative the standpoint remains the single one of strategy — not, however, strategy in the limited sense, but total strategy: strategy, that is, conceived as encompassing all the factors relevant to preserving or extending the power of a human group in the face of rivalry from other human groups. From this standpoint, a topic like religion, for example, appears in a perhaps surprising light as a strategic factor of no less significance than first-line air strength.

The Collapse of British Power.

Barnett is onto something much bigger than just the collapse of British Power and provides a diagnosis that can be applied to much of the West.

I think that many people on the Dissident Right have been reluctant to acknowledge this angle explaining the Western decline primarily because of their own hostility to religion but I'm sensing a vibe in some of the more intelligent blogs that a restoration of religion is going to have to be entertained as a purely political or technocratic solution is not enough. How this is going to happen or how to implement it on a nation wide scale I don't know. However, I hope to do my own bit, and after I finish this post, I'm going to head off to Midnight Mass and bend my knee to the infant babe. I suggest you do the same.

Once again, Merry Christmas to you all and I hope that 2018 brings a few victories to the table.

Thursday, November 09, 2017


That peril is that the human intellect is free to destroy itself. Just as one generation could prevent the very existence of the next generation, by all entering a monastery or jumping into the sea, so one set of thinkers can in some degree prevent further thinking by teaching the next generation that there is no validity in any human thought. It is idle to talk always of the alternative of reason and faith. Reason is itself a matter of faith. It is an act of faith to assert that our thoughts have any relation to reality at all. If you are merely a sceptic, you must sooner or later ask yourself the question, "Why should ANYTHING go right; even observation and deduction? Why should not good logic be as misleading as bad logic? They are both movements in the brain of a bewildered ape?" The young sceptic says, "I have a right to think for myself." But the old sceptic, the complete sceptic, says, "I have no right to think for myself. I have no right to think at all." 
There is a thought that stops thought. That is the only thought that ought to be stopped. That is the ultimate evil against which all religious authority was aimed. It only appears at the end of decadent ages like our own: and already Mr. H.G.Wells has raised its ruinous banner; he has written a delicate piece of scepticism called "Doubts of the Instrument." In this he questions the brain itself, and endeavours to remove all reality from all his own assertions, past, present, and to come. But it was against this remote ruin that all the military systems in religion were originally ranked and ruled. The creeds and the crusades, the hierarchies and the horrible persecutions were not organized, as is ignorantly said, for the suppression of reason. They were organized for the difficult defence of reason. Man, by a blind instinct, knew that if once things were wildly questioned, reason could be questioned first. The authority of priests to absolve, the authority of popes to define the authority, even of inquisitors to terrify: these were all only dark defences erected round one central authority, more undemonstrable, more supernatural than all--the authority of a man to think. We know now that this is so; we have no excuse for not knowing it. For we can hear scepticism crashing through the old ring of authorities, and at the same moment we can see reason swaying upon her throne. In so far as religion is gone, reason is going. For they are both of the same primary and authoritative kind. They are both methods of proof which cannot themselves be proved.
G.K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy

A while ago I got a chance to read Stephen Hicks's, Explaining Postmodernism, after Jordan Peterson tweeted out its praise. I thought it was good and for those seeking a brief introduction to the subject it's definitely worth a read.  For those who are interested, here is a review that I think is quite good.
I'm not really interested in providing a critique of the book but am more interested it's subject matter and in the implications it has on the wider culture.

At it's most basic, Postmodernism rejects the notion of an objective truth and insists on the notion that truth is socially "constructed". Right from the outset we can see that Postmodernism is opposed to Rightism, whose metaphysical fundamental premise is the existence of an objective truth. Furthermore, the way that Postmodernism sees the "truth" is as relative view point, used to assert and maintain power by the Right. Postmodernists may deny the reality of the truth but implicitly they affirm the reality of power, and their aim is to assert it on their terms.

I don't think that many Rightists fully grasp the malignancy of this concept, especially when debating the Left within the current cultural context. Whenever the Left presents some outlandish idea, there is no doubt some Rightist who sets about trying to prove them wrong, but what the Rightist fails to understand is the game he is playing and the game they are playing are totally different. Proof is irrelevant when there is no truth. Arguing against the Left using empirical facts and reason is pointless when your opponent denies the legitimacy of these things.  Which brings us to the subject of free speech.

Our current notions of free speech, based as they are on the classical liberal tradition, are premised primarily on the notion that there IS an objective truth.  They are also premised on the notions that people, especially those in power, may have erroneous ideas, and that reality calibration is only possible through the free exchange of ideas sifted through the mechanism of honest rationality, considered from a variety of viewpoints. The other implicit assumption going on here is the power is expected to yield to the truth when shown to be wrong. In other words, the classical liberal advocacy of freedom of speech was premised on several prior assumptions with regard to ontology, reason, and the rights of power and truth. The other premise is that your opponent was meant to argue in good faith. How do you argue with a person who denies these fundamental premises? More importantly, what's the point when Postmodernism asserts that is no such thing a "right opinion" or argument in the first place.

Academic freedom is likewise premised on the notion that academics should be free to pursue their studies in whatever direction they wish in the search for truth. However this concept gets turned around on its head when it comes to Postmodernism with its assertion that there is no truth.  Postmodernism effectively undermines the whole Western academic apparatus. As Chesterton said it is the thought that destroys all thinking.

Our reflexive and unthinking advocacy of freedom of speech and academic freedom has given a milieu for Postmodernism to thrive. It has advocated the very undermining of the institutions whose protection it seeks whenever it is challenged. Ultimately postmodernism about power, particularly its own, and it spreads it in an environment that that it has sworn to to destroy. I'm normally loathe to put any restrictions on the freedom of speech or academic inquiry but when I comes to Postmodernism I quite happy to provide an enthusiastic exception. The old Church fathers would have recognised it for what it was, a poisonous heresy and would have stamped it out.

I'm all for doing the same.

Friday, October 06, 2017

Leo Strauss: Inside Every Gook

Strauss's attempt to muscle out Christianity as a formative principle of Western Civilisation led him to posit an alternative.  For Strauss, that alternative was Athenian Philosophy.

Philosophy, as Strauss asserted, was categorically different to revealed faith and two could be considered as operating in separate domains: influential, but not binding on each other. While the faith could inspire or challenge, it was the role of philosophy to determine what was the correct way to live. Furthermore, Strauss asserted that there was difference between the philosophy of the "ancients" as opposed to the "moderns". The poisons of modern philosophy, according to Strauss,  found their origin in the radical reaction to the Christian synthesis of faith and reason, resulting in reason being taken  to the extremes.  Strauss saw modern philosophy--with all of its ills--as a sort of Hegelian "reactionary anti-Christianity" rather than an separate thing in itself. Ancient Greek philosophy, on the other hand,  was uncontaminated by the Christian faith and represented a purer and more universal philosophy that could stand alone outside the Hegelian Christian/Anti-Christian dialectic.

As I understand it, Strauss saw the classical world as being more moderate and prudent when it came to rationalisation and reason. The ancient world never made the mistake of the Christian West, of trying to harmonise faith and reason, nor did it make the mistake of the radical Enlightenment, in trying to eliminate the faith.  The "reasonableness' of the ancients was a sort of "check and balance" on rationality and helped stop philosophy/reason  from becoming too extreme. Strauss felt that by adopting this approach a moderate secularism could be achieved, and hence his call for a "return to the ancients."

However, if you think about this for a bit, the terms "excess", "prudence" and "radicalisation" are all relative terms which are subjectively contingent, and what Strauss was advocating in his depictions of Classical philosophy was a "moderate" or dispositionaly conservative, secularism,  i.e. "go slow secularism". Strauss may not have admired Burke but he was effectively advocating a secularism along Burkean lines; a prudent, cautious secularism which didn't push things too far. And I think that  his advocacy of a "moderate" secularism is what gave Strauss his appeal among the "feelz" based "Right" who found the radical secularism of the Left intuitively repugnant.

As mentioned in the previous post, Straussian conservatism's acknowledgement of the importance of religion, without any definite obligation to it, bought the allegiance of the cognitively-lite religious crowds. Taking Strauss at his word, it does seem that Strauss thought that religion was important, but its role seemed to be "influence' and "challenge" reason without reason having obligation to respond.  Straussian paeans to the faith reassure the relgious lambs who felt that they could lay next to the secular lions under the Straussian tent.

Perceptive readers who have suffered this blog will see that there is an automatic metaphysical tension built in the Straussian hermeneutic between it and the  Christian one. Gottfried lays it out;
Christians may appropriate for themselves bits and pieces of the Straussian method but they would be wrong to imagine that the corresponding belief system is congruent with Christian truths or with any other form of revealed religion. If devout Christians find nothing objectionable about the Straussian hermeneutic, then they should be willing to reconsider their position. They should recognize the fit between the the two worldviews is more problematic than they have been willing to admit. This reassessment may be all the more necessary give the still widespread appeal among Catholic traditionalists.

In the battle between Athenian philosophy and Christian revelation, Athens always wins. Furthermore, the practical application of Straussianism in the multi-faith environment that is America--or the Anglosphere--everyone's faith gets "respected" but no one's faith gets to put the brakes on Athenian philosophy. The end result is the relentless push of secularism, albeit at a pace slower than that advocated by the radical Left.

Furthermore, as Athenian philosophy was an exercise in abstract "reason" and "sound judgement", its cognitive operations were not really contigent upon local circumstances, tradition, or identity, something Strauss dismissed as Historicism. Being abstract and purely rational, "above" time and place, the conclusions of Athenian philosophy were transnational and trans-historical, in essence universal. Just as "one plus one equals two" is universally valid, according to Strauss, anyone, thinking like a "sound" Athenian philosopher, be they Arabic, Hindu or Japanese would come to the same conclusions as to what was the "philosophically" right way to live.  Implicit in Straussian conservatism is a universalism in its applicability. i.e. it was globalist in scope.

According to Strauss, when Greek philosophy was put to the task of politics, the "best possible" political system that resulted was Anglo-American democracy. Although I may be expressing it impolitely, it's not far off the mark to say that Straussians believe that within every Gook, Chink, Sand nigger, Wop, etc., there is an American waiting to get out.

There's a couple of important points here;

Firstly, As Strauss attempts to write out Christianity from the political history of the West, he redefines Western as being equivalent to its secular liberal manifestation. By this logic, countries like South Korea, Japan and Israel are Western. The West ceases to be a particular time, person, or place. Anyone can be part of the West provided they achieve "Athenian" illumination and embrace secular democracy.

Secondly, there is an implicit tension between the utopia of secular democracy and the forces which impede it. For the Straussian conservative,  a Christianity which imposed limits on secular democracy would be just as objectionable as a Confucianism or Islam which did the same. The uncoupling of religion, as expressed though culture, if not theocracy, means that Straussian "Conservatism" relentlessly  pushes Left, the limits only being what "reasonable" Athenian rationality deems reasonable.

Take "Gay Marriage" for instance. A Catholic, sound Protestant, or Orthodox religious culture would prohibit the political realisation of the concept, no matter how well argued a case in support of it.  The prohibition would be moral and binding. A Straussian, on the other hand,  would argue that religion is a "challenge" to our conceptions of marriage but for the good of the "polis" it may be necessary to be be flexible and magnanimous to those under the spell of the "Helenic Eros." They talk the religious talk but walk the secular walk.

Thirdly, Straussianism had its gestation in the Wiemar republic and the Cold war period, where there were real threats to the existence of secular liberal democracy. Straussian conservatism sees the aggressive defense and expansion of this type of democracy as an inherent good. The consequence being that there is an implicit expansionary dynamic in the ideology. War is a feature, and not a bug, of the system.  Making the world safe for democracy means getting rid of the threats to democracy, be they political, cultural or local. Anyone who is not with the program is a potential threat.

Fourthly, many of the factors which prevent a particular country from achieving the utopia of modern secular democracy are precisely local and historical. Straussian conservatism is inherently oppositional to them. Straussian conservatism therefore acts as a homogenising social force by hostility to the local insofar as it impedes the universal, implicitly pushing towards a global monoculture and is a facilitating factor of the current globalist agenda.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Strauss and Cthulhu

Equally disturbing to the conservative mind is Strauss's inattention to the pivotal role of Christianity in shaping the Anglo-American tradition. This lacuna in Strauss's hermeneutic has always perplexed me.
(Havers. Leo Strauss and Anglo-American Democracy: A Conservative Critique)

One of the reasons why I harp on so much about the Nazis is because a philosophical understanding of their position goes a long way towards understanding what is wrong with the Right and why it has been on a losing streak for the last century. One of my contentions is that the Right continually gets co-opted by other pseudo Right ideologies which ultimately subvert it and push the Overton window left. While this blog has elaborated on Nazism as an ideology with these features it isn't the only psuedo-Right ideology out there and it's worth turning our attention to the Neoconservative movement, of which Strauss was its premier theoretician.

As I've  mentioned previously on this blog, what differentiates the Rightist from his pseudo variants i.e. Conservatives, Traditionalists, Natsocs and Neocons is a commitment to reality calibration. Therefore the understanding of the nature of reality is fundamental to any conception or definition of the Right. For Western man, until recently, reality was considered to consist of both a physical and "spiritual" dimension.  This spiritual dimension was understood though the framework of Christian biblical revelation. It was this understanding which laid the foundation of Christian (Western) civilisation.

Implicit in this understanding of reality was the relationship between faith and reason. Aquinas was able to demonstrate that the unity of the two through the prior concept of truth. As faith was true, and reason aimed at the truth, there was a synergy between the two. In fact, the two worked together, purifying each from error. If reason led to a conclusion was contrary to the faith, then either our understanding of the faith was wrong or our reasoning was faulty. In the Christian conception of realty, faith and reason were intermeshed and constrained each other.

Christian civilisation developed upon this foundation with accretions from historical and local contingencies. Although the currents were there long before, the great turning point in Western Civilisation comes with the French Revolution, this is where the Jacobins ditch Christian understanding and go it alone with reason. While the disease first starts in France, by the end of the First World War, it has spread everywhere across European civilisation.

I think one of the great accidental disservices of Burke was to interpret the Revolution along temperamental lines. The Left being seen as innovators, imprudent and champions of novelties while the Right, their opposite. The real action was at the metaphysical level. The triumph of the Jacobins was the triumph of the secular over the Christian worldview. And what the Burkean interpretation has resulted in is the association of the Right and Left with temperamental qualities, whereas a more correct interpretation of it would be between Christian and Secular world views. The temperamental interpretation has also resulted in a conflation of Christian with Right and Secular with Left, whereas in reality, both Christian and Secular world views can have their Right and Left dispositional variants. With the near collapse of Christianity in the West and the rise of mass man politics, secularism is the only show in town, and choice for the "informed citizen" is between Right or Left secularism. If you want to know why Cthulhu always swims left it's because Cthulhu is secular.

Enter Strauss.
Nevertheless, Strauss's unhappiness with the Left in the Cold War period is not tantamount to a categorical rejection of all leftist or modern thought per se. As I argue for the remainder of this chapter, Strauss and his students largely agree with the traditional leftist dismissal of Christianity as an irrational influence on the political philosophy of the West. This fundamental consensus between Strauss and the Left, which has been neglected in most of the literature on Strauss, gravely affects their understanding of Anglo-American political thought. For Strauss was compelled to read out of this tradition any sign of a serious indebtedness to Christianity. Unlike the anti-democratic Far Right, which often faults Christianity for its universalist morality (e.g. charity) that made modern democracy possible, Strauss is ultimately critical of Christianity as a foundation for Anglo-American democracy because it is not sufficiently universalist (that is, intelligible to all human beings): it is sheer historicism to hold up one faith as the principal foundation of the West. As as result of this hermeneutical rationale, the very tradition that Strauss and his students wish to preserve as a  repository of rational accessible "eternal principles" is reinvented as a secular liberal artifice
Neoconservative thought is ultimately based on the notion that Christianity does not matter. In fact, Strauss's understanding of European civilisation rejects the notion, first given express formulation by Aquinas, that there is no incompatibility between the Christian faith and reason. For Strauss, faith and reason were incompatible, yet influential upon each other. Whatever Strauss's view of religion, it is clear that he felt that it had no obligatory right on reason: it existed in a separate domain. Sure, religion may be an influence, an inspiration, a tradition, etc.,  but if reason came to a conclusion separate to religion, reason had to be given its "latitude." At its best, Straussian Neoconservatism is a secularism that is "respectful" towards religion, at worst, it plays cynical lip service to it.

Indeed, Strauss's separation of faith and reason is contra to the Christian understanding of the two. Strauss may not have said much against Christianity, but the system he espouses is inherently incompatible with Christianity. In fact the lip service given to Christianity by the Neoconservative moment disguises the fact that that the secular agenda is still given primacy, and while attacks by an openly hostile Left may be easy to spot, the undermining of the Right goes unnoticed by an agent which talks about the importance of  "Athens and Jerusalem", while pushing the metaphysics of the Left.  Havers, and Gottfried clearly recognise the danger;
The importance of the dualistic hermeneutic in Strauss's thought is hard to overstate, since it makes any significant attempt to spy rationality in faith almost impossible. It also throws into question Strauss's respect for the tradition of Anglo-American democracy, whose main defenders, I shall argue, mightily attempted to distinguish "true religion" from superstitious dogma. If Strauss believes that no distinction is possible, does the religious basis for this civilization fall by the wayside? And, if this is the case, does the irreligious Left score the ultimate victory over the Right?
Bingo!  Athenian Secularism, Jacobin Secularism, Managerial Secularism, Socialist Secularism, Natsoc Secularism, Right secularism, Left secularism.......secularist market specialisation is still secularism. Cthulhu swims left because Cthulhu is a secularist.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Havers and Gottfried on Strauss

Strauss and the Straussians have succeeded in doing the opposite of German historian Ernst Nolte and, before him, Marxists credited the fascists with having produced in interwar Europe: "a counterrevolutionary imitation of the Left."  The Straussians have pulled of an equally enterprising feat by assuming a certain right-wing style without expressing a right-wing worldview.

Paul Gottfried, Leo Strauss and the Conservative Movement in America.

While I was on holidays I had a chance to catch up with some reading and two books which I think are worth a mention are Paul Gottfried's, Leo Strauss and the Conservative Movement in America, and Grant Havers's, Leo Strauss and Anglo-American Democracy: A Conservative Critique. Both are very good and I think it is safe to say that both try to be scrupulously fair to their subject.

For those of us trying to understand why the Right failed in the 20th Century, it's important to understand the various movements that were able to co-opt the Right and subvert it from the inside. In Europe, Fascism was an example of a superficially Right wing ideology that was built on a modernist ideology. However in America where because of cultural factors Fascism really couldn't get a grip, the pseudo Right ideology that subverted the native Right took the form of Neoconservatism.

One of the impressions I'm continually left with after reading Sam Francis and the other "Paleocons" is that while they recognised the malice of Neoconservatism, they really weren't able to pin down, philosophically, the source of its malignancy. These books help clarify the issue. Of the two, I was particularly fond of Havers' book, since I felt that Haver's approach to the subject more clearly raised the issue of what it means to be a conservative in the Anglo-American tradition.

In my opinion, it's important to know and understand Strauss since he was the main intellectual influence on the Neocon movement. As a consequence, the legacy of his ideas have also influenced the political Right in the U.S. and contemporary history through the application of U.S. economic and military power.

As both books attest, Strauss is unfairly blamed for a lot of things, and the slant that is given to his ideology more often than not reflects the intellectual weaknesses of his detractors rather than something Strauss is actually guilty of. In both books, the authors try to avoid this error and are scrupulously fair to Strauss, attributing to him only what he actually advocated. In their biographies, Strauss comes across as a highly intelligent man of conservative disposition,  but both authors recognise that his conservatism ends there.

Both authors do a good job describing the development of his ideas and for the purposes of this blog it is the ideas that matter. Strauss's big idea's can be summarised as follows:

1.  That there is an categorical incompatibility between reason and faith. Or as Strauss would say, "a conflict between Athens and Jerusalem"  This incompatibility arises from the fact that faith is not determined or validated by reason and therefore is not "reasonable", but something different to reason. Unlike modern Positivists, he does not actually denigrate religion for not being a product of reason, rather he sees Religion as belonging to a separate category  that is inspirational and socially utilitarian.

2.  Classical civilisation understood the world in this schema, as do Judaism and Islam to a certain degree.

3.  According to Strauss, Western Civilisation was the result of the tug of war between Athens (Reason) and Jerusalem(Faith).

4.  Christianity limited philosophy by subordinating it to faith.

5.  Modernism was a violent reaction to the Christian limitations of Reason--i.e. a reaction of reason being shackled to the faith.

6.  The solution to the crisis of Modernism was to go back to pre-Christian time, to Athenian Philosophy. Unlike the modern revolt of Reason which denied religion outright, Athenian reason was more "reasonable" and took consideration of Religion in its judgements.

7.  Philosophy helps us discern "timeless values" which while not being able to produce a perfect world may at least help us achieve the best possible one.

8.  The timeless nature of the ideals of philosophy makes philosophical insights applicable to everyone.

9.  The modern Anglo Liberal Democracy--particularly in its U.S. incarnation--is the best possible world. It is important to understand that best possible doesn't mean what Strauss would like or what would be a perfect world, it simply means the best possible given current contingencies.

Strauss's approach to the subject had enormous appeal, especially in Post WW2 America, where  a disunited Right, fearful of Communism, found an ideology which crossed sectarian divisions. By grounding Conservatism with the tradition of classical political rationalism, Straussian conservatism was open to anyone who would buy into it. Strauss's conservatism was very inclusive being global in its scope. Furthermore, Strauss's vigorous defence of liberal democracy--something which the Right was never particularly fond of-- came at at time when the free world was terrified by by the specter of Soviet totalitarianism. Strauss was literally, in the right place, at the right time, with the right product.

The problem with Strauss's approach, is that while it superficially appeared conservative, through the emphasis on the Greek Classics, Religion and Reason, anti-Communism, etc, it was anything but and a study of where Strauss goes wrong can serve as an important source of instruction or what it means to be Right and how to avoid the mistakes of the past.

Nevertheless, Strauss's unhappiness with the Left in the Cold War period is not tantamount to a categorical rejection of all leftist or modern thought per se. As I argue for the remainder of this chapter, Strauss and his students largely agree with the traditional leftist dismissal of Christianity as an irrational influence on the political philosophy of the West. This fundamental consensus between Strauss and the Left, which has been neglected in most of the literature on Strauss, gravely affects their understanding of Anglo-American political thought. For Strauss was compelled to read out of this tradition any signs of a serious indebtedness to Christianity. Unlike the anti-democratic Far Right which often faults Christianity for its universal morality (e.g. Charity) that made democracy possible, Strauss is ultimately critical of Christianity as a foundation of Anglo-American democracy because it is not sufficiently universalist. (that is, intelligible to all human beings): it is sheer historicism to hold up one faith as a principle foundation of the West. As a result of this hermeneutical rationale, that very tradition that Strauss and his students wish to preserve as a repository of rationally accessible "eternal principles" is reinvented as a secular liberal artifice whose main inspiration is Athens, not Jerusalem.

Grant Havers, Leo Strauss and Anglo-American Democracy: A Conservative Critique

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Comment Du Jour.

Posting's been light because of a variety of reasons, particularly Writer's Block. Still I saw a comment today over at Vox's blog which I felt was worth reposting.

The German National Socialists of the 1930s could only have emerged from the Weimar era - in other words, from a thoroughly pozzed and degenerate environment. That’s why they had so much degeneracy within their ranks, in spite of their public opposition to much of it. The Nazis were not a traditionalist movement, and they were not a Western movement. They were not pro-European, but were German chauvinists, at the expense of many other European ethnic groups. They were not pro-Christian, but were either outright pagans or embraced heretical versions of Christianity such as Alfred Rosenberg’s gnostic-Catharist ideas. Lastly, they were not truly based upon the Greco-Roman tradition and Western history, but upon a dubious, revisionist version of European history that was cooked up by the Ahnenerbe in order to be used as propaganda, a kind of Tacitus-inspired We Wuz Kangz pseudohistory which even Hitler found embarrassing, and wished that Himmler would knock it off already.

See the whole thing here.

I think that the important point to consider here is that reaction to degeneracy can sometimes happen within the spirit of degeneracy. Genocide is not the morally wholesome solution to whoredom.

The Marxist-Lenninsts regard Fascism as form of bourgeois reaction. That is their frame, it is how they like to position their argument as it emphasises the difference between the two, but I think it is far better to think of Socialism as Left Modernism and Fascism as being Right Modernism. With Left and Right being dispositional/temperamental distinctions. They might be different teams but they're both playing the same game.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Some Thoughts on Charlottesville

When Paul Gottfried coined the term Alt-Right, he saw it as an alternative form of Conservatism that would eventually replace the mainstream variety that was ineffective at dealing with society's drift to the Left. He never really envisaged it as Nazism or KKKv2.0.

As I see it, the Alt-Right was initially a tangential development of the manosphere where people who had been "red pilled" about sexuality connected online to discuss other issues which they had been "red pilled" on.  Eventually these people reached a critical mass and formed a coherent worldview about the nature of society's problems and started describing themselves as Alt-Right. I've been blogging for over ten years now and was there when it happened.  Sure there were nascent elements beforehand, but it was the Internet which enabled the interactions which allowed the critical mass to form.

At the outset the critical mass was racially aware but not racist. It was pro-Western civilisation, which it saw as a good, and pro tradition. It was anti Marxist, anti-PC and anti-sexual ambiguity.  And it was, in my opinion, making considerable headway into the mainstream culture. Those who have been following my blog for a while will know that my greatest fear for the movement was that it would be co-opted by the National Socialist elements, who would eventually drive the movement to ruin.

And I was right.

Prior to my warnings, I was getting a steady growth of traffic onto my blog, with about 40k views a month, after my attacks on the Natsocs, my traffic decreased dropped to about 5K views a month on my new posts. Clearly, I had pissed a lot of people off.

What concerned me most was not the drop in my readership but the realisation that many people were quite sympathetic to the ideas of National Socialism and outright Racism and it's a measure of how bad things have become when the opposition to Left evil was a variant of Right evil. Spencer, TRS and others seem to have been given a free pass by a lot of people who should have known better, and the enthusiastic repeated references to Nazism sort of nullified their "irony". The Alt Right was being transformed into American Natsoc v2.0., all with plausible deniability. Furthermore, apart from the nationalistic component of their ideology, there really wasn't much that was "Right" about them at all. They embraced sexual degeneracy, atheism and multiculti for whites only. Victor Orban--a Christian-knew what he was dealing with, cancelling their meeting and putting Spencer in jail.

A lot of other people were concerned with the co-option and hence the formation of the Alt-lite, there still however, wasn't a clear disavowal of the Natsoc element. And I think the view among many of the normies was that the Alt-Right and Alt-Light represented two poles of a spectrum rather than two discrete positions; they were still one unified body. Spencer and his ilk seemed keen not to dispel this notion. Unfortunately, this meant that whenever the Natsocs did anything stupid the rest of non-mainstream Right took the heat as well.

Now I've got my tinfoil hat on at the moment, but all to post debacle Charlottesville  data coming through seems to suggest that there may have been some behind the scenes "management" going on to paint the non-mainstream Right in the worst possible way. Spencer, may or may not be a plant but he sure as hell acts like one. How Jason Kessler was allowed to organise the rally is simply beyond me, especially given his history, and the presence of the Nazi flags gave terrible optics which was there to be captured by a waiting media who were notified of the event well in advance. (It doesn't matter if it was a plant, good organisation would have stopped it. I would have had my guys beat him up in front of the cameras.)

The point of the whole event being, as I see it, to discredit the entire non-mainstream Right and it work. It was a disaster. And justified the Twitter and internet repressions. Expect it to continue.

Furthermore, the post debacle online "agony" seemed to me to illustrate that the Right is still not aware of both the magnitude and nature of the menace it is dealing with. The Right needs to understand that Antifa is the paramilitary arm of the liberal managerial state, it becomes easier to understand events when seen through this lens. Hence the differential treatment by the media and government apparatus.

As I see it, the whole debacle illustrates several major problems with the non-mainstream Right. They are:

1) Lack of a moral compass which allows malign elements to infiltrate the group.
2) High T, Low IQ membership which favours unthinking intuitive action.
3) A lack of an understanding of what it means to be Right.
4) A lack of an understanding of what we are up against.

Still, I regard the events as a strategic victory for the Dissident Right. And by Dissident Right I mean it as Gottfried originally envisaged it. A Right that was built upon the traditions and identity of the West minus the modernistic ideologies trying to infiltrate it. The Charlottesville debacle seems to have pushed enough people to disavow themselves from the Natsocs which makes me think that future infiltration by them will be neutralised. They are now persona non grata.

Furthermore, Trump's dog whistle to the Dissident Right, legitimising the concerns of normal, decent people while criticising the nutjobs shows that there is sympathy for the dissident Right:
All of those people -- I've condemned neo-Nazis. I've condemned many different groups. Not all of those people were neo-Nazis, believe me. Not all of those people were white supremacists by any stretch. Those people were also there because they wanted to protest the taking down of a statue, Robert E. Lee.
You take a look at some of the groups and you see and you would know it if you were honest reporters, which in many cases, you are not. Many of those people were there to protest the taking down of the statue of Robert E. Lee. This week, it is Robert E. Lee and this week, Stonewall Jackson. Is it George Washington next? You have to ask yourself, where does it stop? You take a look. The night before. They were there to protest the taking down of the statue of Robert E. Lee.
As I see it, the left has destroyed its greatest "asset" in its war against the Right, the Natsocs, and done for the non-mainstream Right what it should have done itself a long while ago. The scorecard at the end of the day was,  a tactical victory for the Alt-Left, strategic loss for the Alt Right, strategic victory for the Dissident Right.