A hallmark of modern Western devolution is surely its rejection of traditional modes of hierarchy and authority, and its embracing of egalitarianism. This has been an endemic element within modernism, one decried by critics as widely drawn as Baron Evola, Thomas Carlyle, and Nicolás Gómez Davila. The central tenet of each – and many other – appraisals of this element of the West’s direction in the past few centuries lies in the observation that hierarchy and authority are necessary components of a well-functioning, rational, and indeed natural society. Whether it’s Evola expostulating on the disappearance of polar axial kingship or Carlyle decrying the sham and simulacrum of insincere society, the common theme (and one well worth noting) is that the rush to egalitarianism represents regression, rather than progress, and this is so whether it takes place in the West or in any other society.
The principle of hierarchy has been around for as long as human civilisation has existed. This much must be understood right from the start if the reader is to have any kind of realistic understanding of human society. Even in the most “primitive” tribal systems, every group has a chief – a man to whom the tribe looked up to as the leader and authority, the one who led the hunts, the one whose mana energised the rituals and made the rains come. Even in more distributed authority systems, such as those tribes governed by councils of elders and the like the principle of authority, resting on wisdom that accompanies senectitude, was still present – no one in such circumstances would have thought to suggest that the youngest wet-behind-the-ears brave or the village women should participate in the decision-making for the group. Generally speaking, there have been very few aberrations from this state of affairs until modern times.
There are few things that will get you into trouble as quickly as talking about race. This issue is one of the hardest things for a person to become red-pilled about. Many soft-Right classical liberal-style “conservatives” may go along with limiting immigration or even criticizing democracy, but the moment you start talking about racial differences, their inner cuck comes flying to the surface. Westerners – who seem almost by nature to be xenophilic – have a very difficult time accepting realities about race which contradict the sort of wishful thinking about this issue which they learn from their schooling and from their popular culture. As such, even many so-called conservatives will manifest an unreasonable fear of reality about these things.
The perfect example of this could be seen on Twitter this past Tuesday. There is a third-tier conservative talk radio personality who broadcasts out of Charlotte, North Carolina (I live in this state and had never heard of him prior to a couple of months ago) named Bill Mitchell. He has amassed quite a following on Twitter, much of it due to his vigorous support for Donald Trump during the recent election. However, on Tuesday Mitchell had a complete, day-long Twitter freak out because he thought that some of his followers might be “racists.” This led to a series of rather ridiculous broadsides against the alt-Right, whom he characterized as horrible, horrible people because many of them are concerned about the drastic demographic changes that are being forced upon Western countries. To be concerned about the future of white people in their own countries and to recognize the defensive need for the same sort of identity politics on the part of whites that other races routinely engage in was for him apparently beyond the pale. He responded with a huge, ugly, virtue signalling cuckout.
It really was hilarious to see, in a morbid sort of way. Mitchell asserted that Trump had disowned the nationalist alt-Right (even though Trump’s top representative to Israel canceled a meeting with Israel’s foreign minister after a Swedish delegate from the “far-right” Sweden Democrats had been excluded). He apparently failed to grasp that the whole impetus for the anti-immigration stance that drove Trump’s campaign was essentially alt- Right style nationalism. Instead, and predictably, Mitchell tried to characterize all members of the alt-Right as Nazis and the like.
About three months ago, I wrote a post which asked (and hopefully answered in a not completely superficial fashion) the question of what constitutes the natural aristocracy, that body of men who will rise above their fellows and who would, if in a rational system, obtain to positions of power and influence, guiding their societies in a superior fashion. This subject has actually been one which I’ve mulled for the better part of two decades, long before I made the journey from normiedom to neoreaction. For a while, I had set the concept of a superior group of people aside because I bought into the false churchianity teaching that “all people are equal” (which is actually never once taught in the Bible) and that it’s “unchristian” to suggest otherwise. Of course, what the Bible actually teaches is that while spiritual salvation may be open to all, positionally there are strict and unequal gender roles, positions of authority within the churches, positions of authority established by God in society, and even inequalities between different national groups. So my return to a proper understanding of inequality and the rightness, and indeed the naturalness, of it was like a reunion with a long-lost acquaintance.
The simple fact is that equality is a farce. People, both at the individual and at the national levels, are unequal. These inequalities occur partly because of genetic and other “hardwired” differences and partly because of choices which those individuals and nations make which have long-term ramifications for their success or failure down the road. While the question of inequality may seem on the surface to be something that pertains more to the nationalism and patriarchy circles within the broader alt-Right, I think it’s definitely something neoreactionaries ought to be concerned with as well. After all, the Moldbugian watchwords for passivism are: Become worthy – accept power – rule. Identifying and inculcating the natural aristocracy is intimately tied in with the first of these steps – becoming worthy. Without a natural aristocracy which has consciously prepared itself to step into the vacuum created by the Great Reset (which has not been averted by the election of Donald Trump, but only postponed for a few years at most), the best men will not rule when the time for it comes.
My purpose with this post is to delve more deeply into what is entailed in the notion of a “natural aristocracy” and how it is enhanced. The process must begin with the recognition that man is a tripartite being – spirit (pneuma), soul (psyche), and body (soma). This is an important point because the tendency on the part of many is to focus on one or two of these to the exclusion of the other(s), which necessarily creates an imbalanced person. Becoming the superior person, Confucius’ “gentleman,” requires the cultivation of all three. As noted above, there are many genetically inborn differences – some people are simply smarter, more athletic, etc. than others. However, the development of the triune being of man can overcome many natural deficiencies, and indeed demonstrates a superiority of will and purpose when this is done. I will cover each part separately in detail below, though keep in mind that each works coactively with the others.
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.
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.
In previous posts, I have mentioned something which I refer to as the “natural aristocracy,” which should form the leadership caste within a well-ordered polity. My views on social order demand the rejection of democracy and allied systems which “spread around” authority within a society, leading to increased social entropy and an unnatural, increasingly non-functional social system. Instead, authority and power should be concentrated in the hands of that “wise few” whose energies and abilities are used to provide guidance and direction to a society so that it may be provided with competent, good government and that it may retain rational social structures which are in line with the natural order of things.
Typically in human history, aristocracies have consisted of those who are considered nobles by birth (hereditary aristocracy) or else who gain and keep power through their access to wealth and other resources (plutocracy). While these do not always coincide completely with the natural aristocracy of which I’ll be writing, there is a great deal of consequential overlap, which I will discuss below.
When we talk about an aristocracy being “natural,” what we don’t (or at least shouldn’t) mean is that there is some group of people who are “inherently” superior to their fellows in society, as through genetics or some other deterministic means. Rather, we should understand the term to be describing those who make the effort to adopt, cultivate, and perfect certain traits and capabilities in their own lives that will “naturally” make them stand out from and excel the general run of the masses, simply because the possession of these derived traits will make one superior to those who lack them. In other words, it is not an aristocracy that exists through no merit of its own. Rather, it is an aristocracy that rises to the top as the cream does from the milk, through nourishing their inborn traits by self-discipline while fostering new ones through effort and activity.
IQ† is one of those things that some people don’t like to talk about. Yet, for so many reasons and in so many ways, it is an important concept, on which so many things in life turn. It is well known that there is a strong positive correlation between IQ and educational level, lifetime earnings, success in your chosen vocation, personal confidence, and (perhaps surprisingly) success in social interactions and relationships. In general, I think people accept that a higher IQ is a good thing to have. What causes problems, however, is when we start talking about the genetic component of IQ. After a long period in which social scientists sought to downplay or eliminate the notion of this genetic component, more recent studies in genetics and heritability seem to have consistently found that the genetic component of IQ makes up around 60-80% of this trait. Certainly there are other factors involved such a childhood diet, early childhood education, and so forth. However, these are not nearly as important as many social scientists had thought (or rather, hoped) they would be.
However, it is when you delve into the realm of talking about group IQ – the statistics of IQ variability between different racial and ethnic groups – that you really begin to run afoul of the sensibilities of today’s modern equalitarians and other SJW-influenced outlets. Indeed, discussing IQ is the single most contentious element in the debates over human biodiversity. In many circles, the very concept of genetic IQ differences, especially between groups, leads to the sort of self-censorship that causes some to wonder if it’s “racist” to even talk about whether there are “genes for IQ” or not. It’s acceptable to observe that the reason blacks can, on average, run faster than whites is due to genetic variances. However, when you start observing that American whites have an average IQ around 103, while American blacks average around 85, that’s when you get put into the punishment box.
Yet – IQ effects are real. This has been most extensively investigated in recent years by Richard Lynn and Tatu Vanhanen (a psychologist and a political scientist, respectively), culminating in their books IQ and the Wealth of Nations and IQ and Global Inequality. They observed the strong positive correlation between average national IQ and national wealth as expressed through per capita GDP, GDP growth, and other economic indicators. Basically, the higher the average IQ of a nation, the richer, more productive, and more innovative the nation’s economy is.
Over the past few weeks, I’ve been teaching my Sunday school class (the young adult class) on the topic of biblical masculinity. Needless to say, I am approaching this from a thoroughly patriarchist angle, rather than the typical proto-feminist “complementarian” viewpoint that is found in so much of modern evangelicalism, and even in fundamentalism. I enjoy the opportunity to address “current event” issues that are involved with masculinity vis-a-vis feminism as we discuss God’s ordained gender roles in the home, in the church, and in society. I chose to teach on this because I’ve become increasingly burdened about the effeminising direction which Western society has been taking. Too many “men” in Western society have absconded their leadership roles and have become like little children who need their mommies to tell them what to do. It’s why we’ve allowed the divorce courts and the family courts to become the terror of the home; it’s why churches all across the land are ordaining female “clergy” in direct violation of the Word of God; it’s why so many so-called “conservatives” fall all over themselves to support “strong women” politicians like Joni Ernst (R-IA) because they brag about castrating pigs.
Anywise, we had an interesting discussion a couple of Sunday’s ago about the reasoning behind feminism. Why is it that feminists are the way they are, and do the things they do? Why is it that even supposedly “godly, Christian” women get swept up into unbiblical and unnatural notion about gender roles that seek to undermine the principles of male leadership and headship that God instituted?
The other day in a social media setting, I posed a question about “rights” and what would be the ramifications of the oft-repeated assertion that “rights come from God.” If this is so (and I believe it is), then would not “rights” only consist of those things that are allowed or mandated by the Scripture?
Generally speaking, there is quite a bit of confusion about “rights” and “liberty” in the West, and in the United States in particular since the US explicitly centered its rhetorical framework around these terms from the very start. However, what has been lost in the ensuing two-and-a-half centuries of discussion has been the very important distinction between these two concepts. Because they are so commonly used together in print and in speech, they have become confounded in a way that now often makes them antithetical to the original intentions behind their use.
But first, some definitions are in order.
Rights – rights are privileges which are bestowed by a sovereign which grant to the bearer a legal, moral, or presumptive claim to that which is defined by the right in question.
Liberties – liberties are those things which are allowed to the one exercising them because authorities (of whatever sort) refrain from exercising coercion, restraint, or interference.
Inequality among men is as natural as breathing or eating. Understanding this truism will generally save a person about 90% of the frustration that they would otherwise feel towards human societies and political systems. Never in the history of mankind – not even in the most hopelessly utopian of efforts by social levelers – has this natural inequality ever truly been overcome.
The natural outcome of these inequalities (and I am speaking here within national and cultural bodies, not of relations between them) is that elites will always arise. Within nations, aristocracies will always occur for a variety of reasons. Even within democratic systems, Robert Michel’s Iron Law of Oligarchy will operate, ensuring that a leadership caste rises to the top to effectively dominate the politics and social system within a nation or political subunit. Looking to classical history, we see that even in places and at times when rampant democritisation took place (e.g. Athens from ~525 – 350 BC, late Republican Rome), the initiative for these efforts arose not from the demos themselves, but from popular (and generally aristocratic) leaders who wielded the people as a weapon for gaining political power. Let us not forget the Cleisthenes, whose reform of the Athenian constitution set that city on course for direct democracy, was of the aristocratic Alcmaeonid family; Julius Caesar and other late Republican leaders of the populares came from aristocratic senatorial families.
No less a democrat than Thomas Jefferson himself said, “There is a natural aristocracy among men. The grounds of this are virtue and talent.” Though Jefferson was (obviously) a vigourous opponent of formal aristocracy, his statement is nevertheless true, and explains why aristocracies – elites within societies – originate.