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.
Here at the Times, I have previously discussed ethnonationalism and even applied it to the American situation. Essentially, ethnonationalism posits that nations – defined as people sharing common culture, heritage, traditions, language, religion, mores, and so forth (and thus, by extension, nearly always sharing a common genetic descent as well) – should be free to self-associate rather than being forced into supranational or globalistic schemas which dilute and destroy their unique national inheritances. But let’s say that this sort of schema were actually to become a reality to a much greater degree than it currently is – what would such a world look like? Would the world be divided among tens of thousands of different nations – each with its own well-defined territorial expanse – consisting of anywhere from tens of millions of people down to merely a few thousand? I don’t necessarily see how that would be advantageous, and would indeed be a very chaotic sort of situation – exactly the opposite of the type of orderly system that traditionalists and reactionaries seek to restore.
Instead, I believe that an ethnonationalist world order should include the element of aristocladism. Essentially, aristocladism may be defined as the division of national groups into hierarchies based on a variety of metrics having to do with their relative power and capacities, including many intangibles such as national spirit, courage, and so forth. Some nations, even when compared to their close relatives and neighbours, seem to “have it together” more than the others. It’s only natural that these nations should stand out as natural leaders and protectors for those around them. However, before expanding on this idea, I’d like to discuss a few foundational concepts.
It is becoming increasingly apparent to all reasonable observers that democracy in the Western world is a failure as a stable governing system. The reasons for this are obvious. Democracy encourages interfactional conflicts within a political state as various special interest and racial pressure groups each seek to seize as much political power from each other as possible. Indeed, democracy can be said to be a root cause of the current crisis we see in the Western nations in which they are being flooded with hostile and inassimilable foreigners from the Third World. The reason they are being invited here is so that leaders of the Blue Empire can essentially replace the intractable native populations with (presumably) more pliable ones who will be open to socialism and globalism, which is essentially what Steve Sailer pointed out was taking place years ago in Bahrain and Libya. From a stability and cohesion standpoint, democracy is toxic. It’s a superfund site which can only be dealt with by digging it out of the earth in toto and burying it in a lead-lined vault for a hundred centuries.
One of the most serious intrinsic weaknesses of democracy is the prevalence of factionalism. Now, no system is immune to this problem. Even monarchies and aristocracies will see varying levels of infighting between factions. However, this type of factionalism is usually confined to cliques which develop around various personalities in court, and rarely spills over into the nation at large. Aristocratic factionalism is almost never something which affects the lives of the common people or which excites them to themselves “choose sides” and undermine the overall social cohesion and order in the nation.
The same cannot be said of democratic factionalism, however. By its very nature, democratic factionalism seeks to mobilise large masses of ideologically motivated people in the service of a preferred political outcome. Whereas monarchic/aristocratic systems usually contain built-in safeguards which act to prevent interfactional strife from escalating to open conflict, the history of democracy, whether ancient or modern, lacks these. Hence, when a democratic system begins to break down, such as occurred in ancient 4th century Athens and in the German Weimar Republic between 1924 – 1932, it is not uncommon for open factional warfare even to take place.
The word “meritocracy” is one which we’ve seen thrown around a lot in recent years. In theory, the word would describe the rule by those with the most “merit” (which would, on its face, seem to make it a synonym for aristocracy, but in practice this is most certainly not the case). As it is popularly used in the media and other outlets, it tends to take on a very narrow definition, with “merit” appearing to be used synonymously with “bureaucrat” or “public policy wonk.” In other words, those which our society considers to have merit are those who would more properly be classified as “experts.”
The problem with this is that being “an expert” (however this is defined) is not the same as being a meritorious person.
Indeed, “experts” tend to be those whose range of knowledge and experience are very narrowly circumscribed, focusing intently on one extremely restricted area of study to the exclusion of most everything else. John Glanton provided a very good example of this in his discussion of meritocracy and gameability, when he noted the difference between students who are good spellers because they are widely read versus students in the national spelling bee competitions who are good spellers only because of their, frankly, aberrant devotion to memorising pre-determined lists of words,
One of the supreme guiding principles of Tradition and neoreaction is that of the restoration of right order within society. We live in an age in which far too many ideologies and political movements are seeking to “immanentise their eschatons.” Unfortunately, since you can only have one utopia at a time, this struggle of theories leads to a great deal of social disorder. This is especially the case when many of these ideologies refuse to bring themselves into accord with fundamental realities about the way societies, and even human beings, really work. Those of us on the reactionary Right desire to obviate the obvious results of all of this confusion by seeking a return back to hierarchy and order.
As a result, we reject the innovations which have arisen out of the Enlightenment and its revolutionary bastard children. The social disorder introduced by the false god of “Liberty” leads to revolution, passes through democracy, and results in the entropic heat death of a society addicted to equalitarianism and radicalised individualism. It is toward this end that all of the children of Whiggery – whether modern liberalism or modern conservatism/libertarianism – inevitably regress.
Yet, what will really restore order? A partial answer to this question, at least, will be provided by gaining a right understanding of the relationship between power, authority, and legitimacy within a society. These three concepts are often conflated in modern writing. Yet, they are not the same. However, they are related in that they form a three step ladder ascending toward good governance and right social order.