American Iconoclasm

For the past month, Americans have been treated to the spectacle of rampant iconoclasm occurring nationwide, the result of a concerted effort by progressives to undermine and erase America’s “racist” past.  It began with the assaults on the South’s Confederate heritage.  Statues of southern generals were targeted for removal, toppling, or complete demolition.  Some more ambitious souls have even floated the idea of dynamiting the monument at Stone Mountain, in Georgia, an altogether more difficult proposition than merely pulling down a statue of Robert E. Lee.

As predicted, the iconoclasm did not remain confined to the destruction of Confederate history.  The process has since moved on to encompass practically every visible and tangible aspect of American history.  We have seen the vandalism of monuments to as widely diverse a group as the Founding Fathers, Union generals, former Philadelphia mayor Frank Rizzo, Christopher Columbus, St. Junipero Serra, and even (in an ironic twist) the Great Emancipator himself.  Additionally, movements are afoot all across the country to rename schools and other public buildings which are named after anyone who was, essentially, a white male.  This follows the recent academic trend of replacing Shakespeare and other historical giants in university curricula (as well as in literal monuments) with pygmyish “people of colour” who were much less capable, but much more ideologically acceptable to the radical Left.

Many observers have compared the recent iconoclasm to those of various Islamic terrorist groups such as ISIS and the Taliban, who have made a habit out of destroying millennia-old cultural artifacts in the areas they control.  Despite the obvious ideological incompatibilities between the two, this comparison does have merit on a deeper level.  The existence of the “Red-Green” alliance between radical Muslims and radical progressives should not be as surprising as many might initially think.  It is an alliance of convenience between two groups who are equally committed to the destruction of traditional Christian, white, Western civilisation and its replacement with something else.

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Prosperity Requires Stable Government, Not Political Liberty

“Prosperity” is one of those things which most people would say is a good thing.  Nearly everyone wants “prosperity,” in whatever way they may define it. Yet, how to secure it is a question which creates quite a bit of division, and has indeed birthed many of the almost innumerable ideological conflicts that have plagued the modern world.  I believe that much of this has to do with the failure on the part of modern man to adopt a rational definition of “prosperity.”

The typical Westerner today, and especially the American, would tend to define “prosperity” in solely economic terms.  For them, prosperity is that which leads to economic growth and a greater abundance of superficial expressions of wealth such as access to entertainments or the possession of various status symbols.  Prosperity would be measured in increasing GDP, more electronic baubles on the shelf at Best Buy, and an ever-rising stock market index.

However, there is a good argument that can be made that these are not really “prosperity,” in a reasonable and traditional sense of the word.  The traditional sense of “prosperity” which has applied for most of human history (once again, we find modernism to be an aberration here, as it is in much else) can best be summed up in the Hebrew (shalowm) and Greek (eirēnē) terms, found in the Scriptures, which the ancients used.  Both of these terms transcend the shallow and materialistic sense which modern Western man applies to “prosperity.”  Rather, “prosperity” involved a deeper sense of spiritual, moral, and mental peace (indeed, “peace” is a common translation of both of those words).  It portended an absence of conflict, not just in the bare sense of not fighting with someone else, but more broadly in leading a stable, well-grounded, balanced life that was suitable for your station in life.  To the extent that it involved economics, it did so in the sense of communal abundance grounded in hard work and industry which allowed individuals within a community to lead lives secure from hunger or privation, rather than speculation in commodities or eternal pursuit of wealth and trinkets.

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Charlottesville Was a Massive 4GW Failure

In this post I’d like to do something a little different than what I usually do with this blog.  I’d like to talk about strategy, and how those on the alt-Right need to get much, much better at it.  After seeing the debacle which occurred in Charlottesville this past Saturday, I think some sound advice may be desperately in order.

I’m sure that a lot of folks in the alt-Right, of whatever stripe, are feeling pretty black-pilled right at this moment. As well they should, because the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville was a disaster.  There’s no way to get around that. Don’t take what I’m about to say in the post below as “punching right.” Rather, understand it as me giving some well-meaning, and I believe much needed, counsel.

What everyone who is interested in this needs to understand is that the reason the Unite the Right rally was a failure was because it completely neglected to take into account 4GW (Fourth-Generation Warfare) principles which can very easily be applied to civilian situations remaining at conflict levels below outright armed conflict.  In fact the leadership at UTR and during the subsequent chain of events once the rally got started broke just about every rule of 4GW that could have been broken.

My advice for any serious alt-Righter of any stripe who wishes to avoid future debacles like UTR would be to first, first, FIRST read Victoria by William Lind, and then familiarize yourself with Lind’s other materials on this subject.  If you haven’t done this yet, then stop what you’re doing, alt-Right involvement-wise.  You’re only going to hurt, not help your cause.

However in the meantime until you can do this, I’ll provide a few pointers as overview.

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Fractal Traditionalism

It can safely be said that everyone in neoreaction and related circles laments the rise of modernism and the concurrent fall of traditionalism.  Indeed, this is one of the primary reasons why reactionary movements in general even exist.  However, what exactly is meant by “tradition”?  When did this “tradition” exist?  Was it Victorianism?  What about the sort of traditional Catholicism found in the Middle Ages?  What of 1st century Christianity?  Ancient Rome? The Bronze Age steppes?  Evolian esoteric history?  What about outside of a Western context?  Don’t other civilizational groups have their traditionalisms as well, and aren’t these just as valid forms of “tradition” as our own?

The answer to all of these questions is yes, each to varying degrees.

It is helpful to think of tradition from an energy state perspective.  Thought of this way, we can recognize traditionalism as a low-energy state, one which is characterized by high levels of social stability and order, which are able to “sink” social energy, preventing it from overflowing into destructive channels.  Conversely, modernism is correctly described as a high-energy state system demonstrating instability and perturbed order.

Thus, I believe a very useful conceptual model to use to visualize tradition versus modernism is to map them out onto an abstracted three-dimensional space in which the z-axis is social energy, while the x– and y-axes are arbitrarily chosen and represent a blended mixture of civilizational “variables” relating to specific aspects of culture, as well as fundamental, underlying traits which define and direct how that culture manifests itself.  This 3D space will contain both valleys (low energy regions representing various types of traditional societies) and neighboring peaks (high energy regions representing various sorts of modernist transitional states between traditional schema.  Movement between any two points in this space will necessarily entail a change in z-axis height, increases or decreases in social energy representing movement toward or away from local “tradition minima.”

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Colonisation as an Engine for Ethnogenesis

Previously on this site, I’ve discussed the phenomenon of ethnogenesis, which is the process (or rather, processes) by which ethnic groups are formed.  As a regular reader of the Times might have picked up, ethnicity and ethnogenesis are subjects which interest me greatly, and which I consequently think and read about a good deal.  Recently, I’ve been reading the proceedings from a series of papers submitted to a colloquium organised by the Centre for Hellenic Studies at Harvard.  These papers all deal with various aspects of ethnicity as it related to the archaic, classical, and Hellenistic Greeks.  One of the issues that has most interested me is that of colonisation (of which the Greeks did quite a lot) and how separation from the metropolis and interaction with “barbarians” affected the ethnicity of the colonials, both as to how they view themselves and how they were viewed by other Greeks.  It strikes me that we can look to certain of the situations in Greek colonialism and draw some conclusions about situations in more recent history, and even those occurring today.

Basically, the three types of situations are these: 1) When a people plant large and populous colonies into a relatively uncivilised location, or at least those in which the indigenous peoples are technologically backwards and unable to effectively resist; 2) when a people colonise an already well-populated region with inhabitants who have attained a high level of civilisation, but remain aloof, and 3) when a people colonise the same, but attempt an integration of the indigenous population.

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The Tyranny of the Technical Society

When we think of writers who are popular reads within neoreactionary circles, Jacques Ellul is not one who readily comes to mind (likely because he was writing in the 1950s, rather than the 1750s or 1850s).  Ellul, for those who are not familiar with him, was a French sociologist and philosopher who began as a Marxist but converted to Catholicism around 1930.  However, he was not ever really a traditional Catholic – much of his theology relating to so-called “Christian anarchism” (which centered upon his absolute rejection of violence, whether religious or secular) eventually led him to formulate positions which while holding to a high view of the biblical texts, tended to reject a role for secular government in the lives of Christians who were living by the Scriptures, which made him more popular with pietistic Protestant groups than with his own church.

However, this is not to say that there aren’t “NRx friendly” areas of overlaps between Ellul’s thought and that of neoreactionaries today.  For instance, his distrust of unrestrained capitalism is reminiscent of reactionary criticisms of capitalism as both vulgar and detrimental to a well-ordered society.  Likewise, Ellul was not altogether friendly to democracy and seemed to see democratic government as a bit of a farce – though given his experiences during World War II, he can perhaps be forgiven for not embracing more authoritarian forms.  Ellul was also concerned with the corrosive and detrimental effects which modernism – especially economic modernism – had on traditional societies.  So while he certainly was not a reactionary by any means, Ellul had some areas of commonality which should prevent him from being automatically stricken from any reading lists.

The book which I would like to discuss/springboard from is his 1954 work, The Technological Society.  In this book, he catalogs – in great detail – the effects which technique has upon various areas of life.  In the process, he more or less reports (and, in the process predicts) the ills of life in the modern world, from the fears of being replaced by automation to the increasing reverence for sportsball over religion and tradition, and much else.

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I Disavow SBC17

One of the unfortunate truths of the modern West is that 90% of everything has been subverted by cultural marxism, including practically every major religious organisation.  This has long been obvious in overtly liberal denominations such as those within the World Council of Churches (WCC).  Sadly, this has become more and more apparent even in so-called “conservative” denominations such as the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC), which despite its reputation for conservatism, has (at least at a leadership level) been a hotbed of cultural marxism for over two decades.  This is made all the more apparent by this proposed resolution to be submitted at the Southern Baptist Convention’s 2017 annual meeting (SBC17) and which will almost assuredly be passed by the assembled delegates out of some misguided sense of “justice.”  The resolution calls on the SBC to condemn the alt-Right and nationalism in general, vomiting out the same laundry list of mean, scary “isms” that you’d find in any crudely drafted anarchist Antifa manifesto somewhere in the lower rent districts of the internet.

Full disclosure: I am a Baptist, but I am not a Southern Baptist.  Instead, I am an Independent, Fundamental Baptist.  So – in theory – I shouldn’t have standing to complain about this.  However, many of the associations I am involved in contain religiously diverse memberships – Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, pagans, agnostics, and more – who do not generally tend to see the finer distinctions between various types of Baptists.  As a result, when the Southern Baptist Convention acts on a set of godless, globalist impulses such as are represented in the resolution in question, it tends to tar other Baptists with its unbiblical and satanic brush.

I will make a detailed presentation of the biblical case for nationalism below – though I shouldn’t need to  since it’s one that most Christians of every denomination understood during the previous nineteen and a half centuries of the existence of Christ’s churches.  Christianity contains within its doctrines a “weak universalistic” message pertaining to the universality of Christ’s atoning sacrifice for sinful man and for the capacity for human beings of all races and nations to place their faith and trust in God the Father through the Lord Jesus Christ unto salvation.  However, it is an unbiblical and illogical leap to pass from that to the sort of “strong universalistic” globalist, socially and nationally equalitarian message which modern liberalism implicitly assumes.  In other words, while it is a genuinely Christian message to say that Christ’s blood can be applied to any sinner of any group, it is NOT a genuinely Christian message to take that basic truth and twist it to claim that it means that national borders should be erased, that racial and national distinctions should be disregarded, and so forth.  The latter is not at all implied by the former.  Yet, this is the message which is adopted by even so-called conservatives when they criticise nationalism as they seek to ingratiate themselves with a godless world that increases more and more in its rebellion against every standard and ordinance of God which He has established for the governance of this world.  This is what SBC17 would be doing if it adopted this resolution.

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Three Types of Societies, Three Types of Governments

Surikov Pokoreniye Sibiri Yermakom.jpg

[Update: Quincy Latham at Quas Lacrimas has a superb reaction/expansion responding to this post.  Go over there and read the whole thing!]

One of the most widely fought arguments within broad alt-Right circles is the question of “race versus culture.”  On one side, there are those who argue for a more or less completely deterministic view, essentially saying that the level and type of civilisation which a people possess are solely determined by their race and their genetics.  For them, the culture which a group of people possesses has been “hard-wired” into them due to the directions which their genetic lineage took millennia ago.  On the other hand, there are those who would argue that culture, civilisation, etc. of any kind could be created and sustained by literally anybody.  These are the folks who seriously believe that you can replace the white populations of Europe, North America, and Australia with brown and black third-worlders and still maintain the same level of civilisation, liberties, etc. as were created by whites. The former position is the one typical for white nationalists, while the latter is usually the domain of so-called “civic nationalists.”

As an ethnonationalist, I tend to agree with neither of these positions.  Rather, I see a mutually reinforcing feedback loop existing among language, culture, and genetic lineage which serves as recursive reinforcement for all three of these things.  The mechanism by which this loop operates is the process of ethnogenesis, in which new ethnoi are gradually produced through evolutionary processes, mostly involving the splitting off of new groups from parent stocks, though sometimes involving the amalgamation of portions of two or more ethnic groups together to form a new group (e.g. what happened in much of Latin America where lower class whites mixed with indios to produce the region’s many variegated mestizo cultural groups).  Per the biblical model, the confounding of languages led to the parting of ways of several very early people-groups who then developed their own cultures, the forms of which depended upon both genetic (intelligence, physical attributes, etc.) and environmental factors.  Over the millennia, these groups continued to break apart as they spread out and colonised new areas (or conquered already claimed regions), with new languages developing, and new cultural forms, traditions, and mores evolving.  As such, the issue is not nearly as clear-cut as the “race vs. culture” paradigm would suggest.  Race and culture work together, along with language evolution, and reinforce each other.  However, it is also fair to note that within a cultural group, the members will virtually always share the same race, and conversely that within the main racial groups into which mankind is divided, those of the same race will exhibit cultures (and languages, though this is less definitive) which are more similar to each other than they are to those in other racial groupings.

Having said all of this, I would then note that among the many other things which are influenced by both genes and surroundings are the broad types of governmental forms (specifically, the three “classical” types of monarchic, aristocratic, and democratic) which tend to be “inhering” traits of the peoples who exhibit them.  Several months ago, I touched on this in a post which could be thought of as a “case study,” in this case the specific question of why medieval and renaissance republicanism seems to have been limited to high-IQ Germanic populations.  Why do cultures – and I’m going to bring the focus specifically to European, European-derived, and near-kin Indo-European populations – exhibit preferences for one type over the others?  Are there cultural reasons which may predispose a nation in a certain governmental direction?

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The “New Man” and the Renovation of Aristocracy

One of the greatest flaws in modern democratic and republican societies is the lack of a true and genuine aristocracy.  While aristocracy has been much maligned since the rise of the revolutionary spirit engendered by the Enlightenment (and exemplified in the American and French revolutions), historically the rule of the best has been one of the anchors of stable and successful civil and moral society. The replacement of aristocracy by popular, democratically-oriented regimes is one of the long-term causes of the inverted and dissociative trends which have become the norm in nearly all Western cultures.

One the most basic things that anyone who hopes to have a rational view of human civilisation must understand is that hierarchy is the natural state of affairs within human society.  In practice, there is no human society which has not had some form of social hierarchy, however “primitive.”  Even though many ancient societies were not organised into the rigid and distinct castes into which many traditional Indo-European groups were, either in tripartite (priest-warrior-commoner) or quadripartite (brahman-kshatriya-vaishya-sudra) form, virtually every society which humanity has ever produced within the past 6-10,000 years has had some form of hierarchy.  Even systems (such as communism) which seek in theory to destroy hierarchy end up in practice simply reinstituting a new system of hierarchy to replace the old.

Since hierarchy is natural in human society, the obvious corollary is that aristocracy is also natural and right (when genuinely aristocratic men occupy the apex of their nations).  There must and will always be a class within any society which makes up the “top men.”  This is true even within liberal and democratic regimes, though the bases for the elevation of the leaders in such societies generally are not truly “aristocratic,” but are based on retrograde and degenerate reasons such as mere wealth, technocratic skill, or political subterfuge.  In more Traditional and well-ordered societies, the leadership caste is made up of warriors and regality, those who inherently possess superior traits through blood and spirit, and who subsequently apply themselves toward developing those traits through religion, service to the king and nation, and the perfection of their minds.

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Cicero’s “On Old Age” and Modernity’s Obsession with Newness

I don’t believe that it will come as a surprise to most readers that Western Civilization is obsessed with the idea of being “modern,” and has been for quite a while. Concomitant with this concept is that of “newness.” If something is new, then this is equated with it being better. Conversely, things which are old are viewed as out-of-date or even useless.  This mentality has wormed its way into practically every facet of life in the West. Indeed many of our industries operate on the principle of planned obsolescence – purposefully engineering their products to be superseded buy newer models on a regular basis.

Coupled with this tendency is the one similar to it that fetishizes youth while disdaining old age. Our shallow societies equate youth with beauty, and give preference to those in our societies who have the least knowledge and wisdom. Youthful foolishness is honored over staid, grumpy old wisdom. Westerners spend billions of dollars every year on surgeries and pharmaceuticals, vainly trying to stave off the inevitable effects of both entropy and their degenerate lifestyles.  Nearly the entirety of our entertainment, advertising, and related establishments are focused on catering to the young – when is the last time you saw an older person hawking the latest electronic gadget or starring in the hottest new sitcom?

In his essay “On Old Age,” Cicero lauds the blessing of the aged, giving four reasons why men fear growing old and then refuting those reasons.

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