Poor Rich People

One of the great challenges of the demographic age will be re-conditioning people to think culturally, rather than materially. This is particularly true of conservative white people, who have been trained their whole lives to define their existence by the amount of stuff their heirs will throw away when they die. Theirs is an entirely materialist existence, so the transition to cultural thinking is going to be difficult. An example of this is in this post by Steve Sailer regarding public venues.

He starts with the observation that the ancients built a lot of very sturdy stone theaters and arenas, while those who came immediately after the fall of Rome did not built anything of significance. It was not until the Middle Ages that we see the building of large public structures, but those were cathedrals and churches. He notes that it took until modernity to build large public arenas. Sailer then jumps to the conclusion that the Greeks and Romans must have a lot of money relative to the Middle Ages.

Now, it certainly required a great deal of money to hire men to build amphitheaters and arenas in the ancient world. Reallocating thousands of people from farming and military service can only be done by a wealthy society. The early medieval period in Europe was not a time of great prosperity. Wealth is not enough, however. Those theaters and arenas were not just the toys of rich people. They were not built by rich people, at least not in the way in which our sports arenas are built today.

In fact, the more apt comparison is between the arenas and theaters of the ancient world and the cathedrals and churches of the Middle Ages. The theaters built by the Greeks were an important part of their cultural life. The plays and festivals reinforced the cultural values that made Greek life possible. The arenas built by the Romans were not just for sport. They also had strong cultural importance. The reenactment of great battles tied the Roman to his past and to his ancestors.

For most modern white people, Sailer’s instincts on this seem natural. After all, we live in an age without any sense of culture, other than the endless war on what is left of white culture by the brown tide sweeping the land. For most Americans, the point of life has been to stuff their pockets with as much stuff as they can. The measure of life is your pile of stuff. The super-successful at getting stuff build really large buldings where you can buy stuff, like sports jerseys to remember buying stuff.

It is a good example of how the white people who came along after the Second World War became entirely materialistic in their thinking. This is not a Baby Boomer issue, but more about the legacy of their parents. That cohort went through the Great Depression and then the privations of the war. In the ensuing boom times of the early days of the empire, they justifiably enjoyed the fruits of their labor. It was a golden age, relative what came before, so they quickly learned to value material prosperity.

The so-called greatest generation gets credit for weathering the grinding depression, without embracing communism. They get credit for fighting two industrial wars on two continents, winning both and ushering in the Pax Americana. They also should get credit, and blame, for ushering in the material age, where all things are measured in material terms. The generation that built the American empire, also built a society in which everyone knows the price of everything, but the value of nothing.

It has become a meme to mock the Baby Boomers for their obsession with stuff, but it is a society-wide phenomenon. Modern America functions like a ghetto riot, in which the culture is a liquor store. Everyone is just smashing and grabbing what they can, not because they need it or want it, but because that’s what they do. This is particularly true with conservatives. All of their arguments, particularly those that fall into the cultural and spiritual, have been reduced to economic appeals.

In the long scope of things, the American empire will be seen as an entirely artificial construct, built on the wreckage of Western civilization. The two great industrial wars that opened the 20th century exhausted the people spiritually. This includes the people who claimed to have saved the West. The cultural achievements of the American empire, such as they are, reflect that lack of spirit. The American empire and the culture around it is a lifeless zombie shuffling through time and space.

A simple way of seeing this is the fact that Los Angeles, the home of Hollywood and the center of American popular culture, has a homeless camp in the center. Estimates say it contains 70,000 of our fellow citizens. Yet, the super-rich who run the city are not concerned in the least. After all, they have their stuff. Even the most callous of Roman emperor had compassion for the poor of Rome. The modern American oligarch has nothing but contempt for those who cannot consume product.

The current ructions are not a response to the changing demographics as the suicidal wreckers like to claim. It’s not about the transition to a post-national order. The reason for the growing unhappiness is that modern American society offers no purpose, no beauty and no reason to celebrate life. It’s an ugly age with a sterile ascetic that reflects the transactional nature of the age. This is an unnatural state for people, so the people are increasingly unhappy with life in the material age.

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It’s Personal

Something that has been noticeable for a long time now is that the Left is in a perpetual state of rage. The smallest things send them into spasms of anger. They hate Trump and they really hate his voters. They will go rummaging around in the social media history of people, looking for reasons to hate them. It’s not a general all-encompassing hate, like hating the fans of a rival sports team, but a very personal and cruel hate. They want the victim to suffer and they want to enjoy his suffering.

One reason for this, obviously, is that many people attracted to the Left are mentally unstable, so their politics are just a vehicle for their pathology. Many of the Antifa people, for example, have no coherent political thoughts. They just like being crazy on the streets and causing mayhem. This is the type of person who was attracted to the riots that used to follow the big economic summits. There was never any purpose to their rampages, other than the thrill of smashing things and causing mayhem.

Another more important reason for the rage is the nature of leftist politics in our post-national age. Being on the Left no longer means joining a group that has a tangible enemy, against whom the group throws themselves. The days of unionist, socialists and communists operating as collectives are gone. Even the post-modern movements like climate change and sexual politics is atomized. Much of it is backed by the sorts of people the Left used to oppose like rich people and business.

Lacking an organized enemy and a transcendent reason to formally organize, left-wing politics is highly personal now. No one is committing to a cause bigger than themselves, as their self is the most important thing in their life. It’s why the pronoun stuff is such a thing for these people. There is not much more personal than how the world will refer to you in terms of sex. This intense focus on how the world must perceive them is the root of their politics now. The issues are just vehicles for self-expression.

This is not something anyone is trying to hide. This essay by one of the organizers of the climate activist group Extinction Rebellion explicitly makes this point. He’s not really concerned about the climate. He concedes that there is nothing to be done that is going to change what’s coming. The purpose of his activism is to normalize himself and his sense of self. It’s all about him forcing you to listen to his story and then accepting it and him as something other than strange.

The idea of the personal being the political is not new. The phrase comes from an essay by feminist Carol Hanisch in the 1960’s. The idea is that personal experience is intertwined with larger social and political structures. One’s personal choices reveal one’s politics. Consequently, one should make personal choices that are consistent with one’s politics. The political person should live the life they advocate, so that means not doing business or associating with the wrong people.

Today, this has moved from simply not buying stuff from a business owned by a bad thinker to committing one’s life to destroying the bad thinker and anyone foolish enough to not share the same hatred. The whole woke movement is a blood lust, an effort to cause real harm to people by denying them the ability to live. Climate activism, as expressed in that essay, is about destruction. Everything the writer sees as keeping him from reaching personal fulfillment must be destroyed.

It is not a politics of self-interest, as the so-called conservative would imagine. The modern leftist is like a bear protecting her cubs. Any perceived threat is met with overwhelming aggression. You see it in the language. They conflate ideas and statements with actions. Holding a contrary opinion makes them feel unsafe, as that opinion is viewed as violence. They need safe spaces, by which they mean the removal of anything and anyone that contradicts their sense of self.

This is the real cause of what is behind the social media purges. From the perspective of a radical, everything in their space is theirs and an extension of their self. When a contrary opinion, or even an oblique reference to one, shows up in their twitter timeline, it feels like a home invasion to them. Those women posting about how they are literally shaking or sobbing because their favorite cable show had a bad person as a guest are not exaggerating. They were physically effected by the experience.

It’s an important thing the alt-right got wrong about their on-line activities. They still assume the reason they get thrown off these platforms is because their ideas are so powerful. In reality, their ideas are meaningless. The reason they are removed from the platforms is the same reason one would kill a snake. It’s not that the snake poses a threat to the ecosystem. It is that the snake is a personal threat. The person kills the snake because they can’t feel safe until they know it is dead.

The ultimate cause of this highly personal radicalism is the same thing that is driving dissident politics. The dehumanization, that is the result of post-national liberal order, is creating a growing number of people looking for something to fill the void left by community, identity and culture. For some, it means a deep dive into their own psyche where they live hiding behind the sandbags of their own peculiar traits. For others it means a search for community and fraternity.

The sorts of people drawn into the politics of self are not new to humanity. These people are not the victims of a new pathogen or chemical contamination. It’s just that in the past, our societies had evolved cultural and institutional ways of channeling these people into defined roles. The obliteration of community by global capital and the destruction of culture through multiculturalism has destroyed everything that gives meaning and purpose to life. That’s why they are so angry.

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The Groyper Rebellion

The youthful rebellion against establishment gate keepers on the college campus has mostly confirmed what has always been understood about the front men hired to be the face of these operations. Never having to answer tough questions allows them to fool people, especially young people, about their motives. The questions young people are posing these guys are not all that tough, but when posed to hot house flowers not used to push-back, the result have been devastating.

The main take-away thus far is that Charlie Kirk is the political equivalent of a lip-syncing pop star. In narrowly staged performances, as long as the sound track works perfectly and the lights are just right, Kirk can put on a good show. When he has to rely on his own talent to carry the show, the results are comically poor. He was recently booed off the stage at his UCLA event. Like that lip-syncing pop star, who gets exposed during a stage mishap, Kirk’s career is now a laughingstock.

Kirk, of course, is not the only fraudster to get the business from the groypers, as it has now become the cool thing to do. Matt Walsh of The Daily Wire, who is always a skipped pill away from a shooting spree, had to be sedated after getting some tough questions from college boys. The cynical con-man Dan Crenshaw has responded by threatening to ruin the lives of these kids. It appears that Pirate Dan is trying to prove that honorable military service is independent of good character.

The most interesting result thus far has been the meltdown by Ben Shapiro last week, which was so bad he had to pull it from his YouTube channel. The comments were full of young people mocking him. Shapiro is probably the smartest of the con-men deployed by Conservative Inc., but he is also the most thin-skinned. Any push-back is met with a childish tantrum. Like Charlie Kirk, it suggests he is a hothouse flower, carefully protected by his handlers, in order to maintain the charade.

If you pay attention to his act, what comes through is he has a deep, subconscious hatred of white people. Take for example his promotion of the dubious claim that European civilization is defined by Judeo-Christian tradition. For most of Western history, Christianity and Judaism were at odds. In the early medieval period, Jews and Christians competed for converts. When the term Judeo-Christian came into use in the 17th and 18th century, it was as a Pauline pejorative against Catholicism.

Putting aside the history, what he is doing is rewriting the European past in order to make it dependent on his religious and ethnic traditions. You can have your Christianity, as long as it is accepting of Jews, which neuters the theologically. You can also have your Western chauvinism, as long as you make sure Jews are central characters in the narrative. Ben Shapiro’s view of Western civilization is colonial, as if he is allowing white people to have some conditional cultural heritage.

This becomes clear when Shapiro says “white civilization is nonsensical.” He says that “civilization is defined by culture, history and philosophy.” He is divorcing what he calls Western civilization from the people who created it. Like his sleight of hand swapping out Catholicism from the heart of European history, he is turning Western civilization into a gift inexplicably granted to the people of Europe. It is not something European people created, but something they received, like hitting the lottery.

There is an obvious implication to this train of thought. If white people are just lucky recipients of civilization, then they are not really deserving of it. This would explain Shapiro’s love for non-white immigration. Why shouldn’t everyone get a taste of this civilization thing? It’s only fair. When he says “he does not give a good damn about the so-called browning of America,” he is not entirely honest. In fact, he really cares, as he is in total support of it as an act of retributive justice.

You can never know what is in someone’s heart and it is entirely possible that Shapiro has not thought through any of this. It is increasingly clear that he is clever, but not a deep thinker. He possesses a vermin-like rapacity that is often mistaken for smart and ambitious in this degraded age. His act is therefore about presenting himself as a smart guy, who just happens to agree with an audience desperate to throw money at anyone showing them some respect. He’s just working the suckers.

Either way, the fact that these guys have no prepared responses to these questions has some larger implications. It is important the keep in mind that the same people bankrolling Shapiro and Kirk and all the rest are also bankrolling versions of these guys on the Left. Both sides of the Progressive morality play are financed by the same amorphous donor class that also underwrites the Imperial Capital. These morality plays are always the product of the Cloud People to control the Dirt People.

This stuff suggests the divide between the Cloud People and Dirt People has grown to a point where neither side really understands the other. The people behind these shows have no idea what’s going on among the hoi polloi. Similarly, the rabble is baffled as to why these people don’t address the questions being raised. Much of the success of this rebellion is due to the groypers assuming their targets were smart and prepared, so they prepared great questions and great logistics.

One thing that is true about revolutions, at least in the West, is that long before the crisis in the streets, there is a quiet divorce between the people and their rulers. The people in charge stop knowing or even respecting the people over whom they rule, while the people lose their connection to their rulers. It is this connection, this set of reciprocal obligations rooted in blood and history that sees a people and their rulers through crisis. Once it is gone, the next crisis becomes a revolution.

When even a guy, who is desperately trying to be the voice of the Dirt People inside the Imperial Capital, is all thumbs on the youth revolt, it says they are flying blind. Gaetz posted his support for the Cloud and hour later he is rushing to qualify that tweet, because his staff noticed the reaction. When the Tribune of the Dirt People instinctively sides with the Cloud People, the gap between us them and them has probably reached a point where it can never be bridged. What comes next is inevitable.

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Mencken Day Two

At an event like Mencken, you can see why conservatism failed. Way back when the founders of Buckley conservatism were plotting their way forward, they started with the assumption that the majority of Americans agreed with them. The two problems they faced were that the Left would claim the intellectual high ground, thus bullying enough people into going along with liberal reform ideas. They also faced the problem of getting their people out to vote. They needed to mobilize the majority.

The solution was an effort to build a movement that would do three things. One it would raise money from wealthy white people. Then it would use that money to build out an intellectual framework from which to confront the Left on intellectual terms. Then it would use the ideas cooked up by those think tanks to rally conservative people in support of those policies. The Right would have better ideas and better mobilization.

This strategy always had an internal conflict. On the one hand, the Right was going to cut through the Left’s heated rhetoric with facts and reason. You still see that today when Ben Shapiro puts on his Spock ears and tries to sound like an intellectual. The central claim of his act is that you must put aside your passion. The trouble is, that directly conflicts with mobilization efforts, which are always going to be an emotional appeal for people to put aside reason and act on their passions.

The resolution to this conflict was to sublimate emotional appeals to the intellectual arguments of the Right. At a conference like Mencken, which is still rooted in the conservative habits, the speeches are all recitations of facts, empirical examinations of the Left’s arguments and appeals to the reason of the audience. The only place you see emotion is outrage at the excesses of the Left. There’s a pride in not allowing that outrage to infiltrate the arguments made on behalf of conservative issues.

That was an effective approach, in a country that was close to 90% white, which was America in the 20th century. The conservative movement turned the GOP from a minority party into the majority. By the 1990’s, even Democrats like Bill Clinton were ready to declare big government dead. Then the effects of demographic replacement started to show up at the ballot box. That overwhelmingly white majority began to decline, so those appeals to reason had a shrinking audience.

That is why Buckley conservatism is dead. It turns out that there are no sound empirical reasons to defend your homeland, at least not ones that will cause men to sacrifice for the effort. Those arguments need passion, not four color graphs with supporting tables and citations. The answer to the Left’s demand for immigration was not a tweedy intellectual, but a man with passion for his people and his way of life, willing to rally his people to do what must be done to defend those lands…

An odd thing I just noticed this weekend is the difference in how academics do public speaking versus the private sector. Academics read their prepared remarks, usually looking down at the lectern. In the corporate world, speakers memorize their speeches, maybe using some notes to jog the memory, but otherwise look at the audience as they are speaking. You’re taught to scan the audience to match the cadence of you speech, so it looks like you are talking to each person directly.

Now, the issue may simply be that in the corporate world, speakers tended to be trained to speak by professional public speakers. In my time in that world, I went to plenty of classes on speaking, interviewing, presenting and so on. My guess is few academic take a public speaking course. Instead they just do what all the other academics do, so it has become the custom. Maybe the audience drives it. Academics may prefer to hear speeches read from text, so that’s why it is done…

At the after-party, I was reminded why right-wing resistance to the Left has always fallen to pieces on contact with the Left. Even in a crusty fringe crowd like at Mencken, there is a weird pride in no one toeing the company line. The Left never tolerates free thinkers, which is why they can maintain disciple. The Right has always assumed that the ideological discipline of the Left is a vice, so they have made sure to have a diversity of opinion. The sperg army will never be a match for the Left.

This is, of course, the result of generations of conditioning as to what it means to be right-wing. Instead of being a stand-alone, positive set of beliefs and aspirations, it is a laundry list of complaints about the Left and a determination to be the mirror image of what is understood to be left-wing at the moment. To be a right-winger is to never impose discipline on the ranks, so everyone is free to be an army of one. The Left, of course, is then free to pick them off one by one…

The main reason to go to these events is the social aspects. In my case, it is an opportunity for readers and listeners to meet me. Given the interactive nature of this form of media, I’m just as curious to meet readers, as I have interacted with many of them for years now. The thing I was thinking about on the way home is that I’ve never met a reader who is less interesting in person than their on-line character. It speaks to the superficiality of internet culture. On-line, we’re two-dimensional.

That is why the Left works so hard to keep us from meeting in real life. When like-minded people get together, socialize and talk about the issues, it raises morale and it builds social capital. That’s the force multiplier the Left fears most, because they lack it in their own ranks. Their discipline is fueled by rage and self-abnegation. Social capital is like a fuel that creates more of itself as it burns. That’s why they work so hard to keep us as atomized strangers living in our bespoke silos on-line…

For sites like this to exist, it requires people like you chipping in a few bucks a month to keep the lights on and the people fed. It turns out that you can’t live on clicks and compliments. Five bucks a month is not a lot to ask. If you don’t want to commit to a subscription, make a one time donation. Or, you can send money to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. You can also use PayPal to send a few bucks, rather than have that latte at Starbucks. Thank you for your support!

Mencken Day One

The Mencken Club is a different sort of affair than most of the dissident events you will attend, as it is older and more academic than most. The host, Paul Gottfried, a retired college professor and current editor of Chronicles, runs it like an academic conference you would have experienced a generation ago. That is, it is speeches and presentations around a topic, about which the speakers do not all agree. The idea is to give the attendees a range of opinions on the topic that is the theme of the event.

Of course, it is an older crowd. Most of the people involved in organizing are seniors, who were in the paleoconservative movement a generation ago. The event tends to focus on what went wrong with conservatism, as many of the people involved were purged by Buckley at some point. It is fair to say that they would like to see Conservative Inc. burn to the ground. As a result, there is a nostalgic quality to the event, as they tend to talk a lot about people and events from the past.

At dinner on Friday night. Paul Gottfried gave the opening talk and he was followed by someone calling himself Ed Martin. He is President of the Eagle Forum Education & Legal Defense Fund. He is also something of a curator of the life and times Phyllis Schlafly. His talk was mostly about Schlafly, but he also got into current politics a bit and it was an interesting reminder of just how detached the old conservative movement is from current reality. The word delusional kept coming to mind.

He kept insisting that the way forward was to keep pressing the old conservative agenda and that would overcome demographic reality. He thinks there are lots of votes out there just waiting for someone pitching conservatism. During the Q&A I was tempted to “groyper” him with a tough question about demographic reality, but I thought better of it. I realized that those nodding along were never going to face up to reality, so there would be no point in pressing the guy on the issue.

Sitting there as he talked about the conservative message, I realized that where “our thing” is going is out there beyond where the conservatives ran out of road. Every day, more and more people are realizing that the future in this land is never going to be like the past, so it is time to find an approach that fits the times. Guys like Ed Martin are sincere people, who mean well, but they are yesterday men who prefer to think about the past so they don’t have to think about the future…

The way these things work is there is a registration and cocktail reception then the dinner around 7:00 PM. I got my name tag and was chatting with Paul, when a very lovely young woman walked past. These affairs tend to be almost all male and this one is all older males, so it was good to see an attractive young woman. This is true of the more dissident events as well. There are plenty of women on this side of the great divide, but they don’t turn up at these events for whatever reason.

Anyway, a few minutes later she came up to us and introduced herself as a reader. I’m always flattered when people tell me they are fan. She is a very smart and interesting, so we chatted for a while. One of the things she brought up was how people she knows have the one exception to biology in their life. These people would join our team, but they have that one exception to the rule that keeps them tethered to the normie side of the great divide. It’s the old NAXALT problem.

NAXALT stands for “Not All (X) Are Like That” with X being some natural demographic grouping of people. It is the mistaken belief that because you can find one exception to the rule, that the general rule is invalid. For example, not all immigrants vote Democrat, so the observation that immigrants overwhelmingly support Democrats is somehow not true, despite the data. This is, of course, most commonly found when talking about the complexion of crime statistics. Ben Carson is more powerful that Table 43.

One suggestion I made was to explain the NAXALT fallacy in a different context that does not have the same emotional baggage. Instead of taking the issue head on, approach it from the direction of other non-political stuff. Re-condition their minds to accepting that exceptions don’t change the general rule. More important, we tend to live by the general rule. Once your normie friend is used to accepting the general rule in all other issues, they will be more prepared to accept it in our issues…

The event is smaller this year. I suspect the actuarial tables are more to blame than anything else. There’s also the fact that the paleos never did a good job courting young people into their ideas. In the 1980’s, when the great schism on the Right became obvious, the Buckley side was the cool and hip side, which naturally attracted the young people, while the paleo side was for our parents. It is a lesson that dissidents need to accept when it comes to organizing ourselves. We have to be intergenerational.

In fact, I’m increasingly convinced that we have to make an effort to tamp down the generational politics. I like a good Boomer joke as much as the next guy, but generational squabbling is just another form of brother war. The young guys in this thing are the future, but they cannot have a future without older generations to offer up advice and honest appraisals of their own past efforts. My generation was never going to amount to much, but we can be a cautionary tale for the next generation…

For sites like this to exist, it requires people like you chipping in a few bucks a month to keep the lights on and the people fed. It turns out that you can’t live on clicks and compliments. Five bucks a month is not a lot to ask. If you don’t want to commit to a subscription, make a one time donation. Or, you can send money to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. You can also use PayPal to send a few bucks, rather than have that latte at Starbucks. Thank you for your support!

The Organization Man

One of the funny things about doing what I do here is that I often stumble onto things that get no play in the press, but are on people’s minds. I’ll write about a topic that interests me, but is not in the news, and it will get a ton of comments and links back from people passing it around. Our side of the great divide tends to have a different focus than what you see in the above ground world, but not always. Sometimes, the stuff on our mind at the moment, regarding current events, is on their minds too.

The topic of last week’s podcast is a good example. I did not think it would be all that interesting to people, but I was wrong. I got a lot of long e-mails from people about what they are doing in their community. I’ve also seen postings in the so-called conservative media about the topic this week. It turns out that a lot of people are thinking about how and why they should be joining and building local communities, where the likeminded can socialize and talk about this stuff.

Thinking about it, I suspect the reason is lots of people are looking around at what’s happening and coming the conclusion that the wheels are coming off the cart. What’s happening in Washington is an insurrection. The normal order is no longer respected by the people who are supposed to maintain order. Instead, the political establishment is in open rebellion against the very laws that make it possible for them to be an establishment. How many clicks before there are tanks in the streets?

It’s not just Washington. That story of the Mormon group getting ambushed over the border resonates with people. It would be one thing if they were in the Congo or down near the isthmus. That’s far away and people can imagine it is savage. The border is their backyard, literally and figuratively. People can imagine that spilling into their towns and neighborhoods. Not only is our government doing nothing about it, the establishment celebrates it. Their indifference is breathtaking.

At various times in my life I have been in situations where things go sideways and the normal order breaks down. The white people, for reasons they never consider, just show up where they think they need to show up, ready to take direction, lend a hand to restoring order and helping those who need help. It is our nature and why civilization exists in the first place. That is maybe what we are seeing. The collapse of normal order is getting people to seek out their neighbors and start figuring out what to do.

I’m not in the camp that thinks there will be a sudden collapse and we will be thrown into a war of all against all. Instead, I think decline is like an uneven staircase, where society takes small imperceptible steps down, then a big step or two and then some more little steps again. Just as progress is fits and starts, regress is fits and starts too. We could be about to hit one of the bigger steps. A year from now, the current year will feel like a foreign country. There is nowhere to go but down.

This week I have the usual variety of items in the now standard format. Spreaker has the full show. I am up on Google Play now, so the Android commies can take me along when out disrespecting the country. I am on iTunes, which means the Apple Nazis can listen to me on their Hitler phones. The anarchists can catch me on iHeart Radio. YouTube also has the full podcast. Of course, there is a download link below.

For sites like this to exist, it requires people like you chipping in a few bucks a month to keep the lights on and the people fed. It turns out that you can’t live on clicks and compliments. Five bucks a month is not a lot to ask. If you don’t want to commit to a subscription, make a one time donation. Or, you can send money to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. You can also use PayPal to send a few bucks, rather than have that latte at Starbucks. Thank you for your support!

This Week’s Show


  • 00:00: Opening
  • 05:00: The Morality Play
  • 15:00: Accepting Reality
  • 25:00: What Does Not Work
  • 35:00: Goal Setting
  • 45:00: Organizing Versus Mobilizing
  • 55:00: Closing

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Failure Analysis: Alt-Right

With the leaked audio of Richard Spencer’s embarrassing tantrum after the Charlottesville riot, the book can finally be closed on the alt-right. If there was anyone still using the term as anything but an epithet, they will no doubt drop it. The first political movement to grow out of internet culture has come and an ignominious end. While it may no longer be a thing, examining what they did right and what they did wrong, especially what they did wrong, can be useful for dissidents.

The primary reason the alt-right failed was that it was never a coherent movement with an intellectual center. It was just a ragtag collection of people with a gripe about something going on in the culture. There were those who recently discovered Kevin McDonald, so they worked that angle. Others had discovered race realism and figured out why libertarianism was a dead end. Then there were the boys who did not like what was happening with feminism. The alt-right was a grievance society.

Reaction to social trends can certainly be the starting point of a cultural or political movement, but it can never be the end point. If the whole point of your politics is to stand in opposition to something, you’re not part of a movement. You are part of an obstacle that will eventually be removed. That is what literally happened to the alt-right, piece by piece, over the last few years. One tribe of the alt-right after another was anathematized and then marginalized by the Left. Now it is gone entirely.

Now, some would argue that the concept of the ethno-state was the vision of the alt-right, but that was another reason it failed. Richard Spencer would have been more successful claiming he was going to lead the alt-right back to the Shire, so they could reunite with their hobbit brothers. Setting your goal as the creation of a what is basically white Wakanda is not serious. As a theoretical construct to use as a critique of multiculturalism it could have been useful, but as a goal it was absurd.

The thing is, racial nationalism is not a new thing. Arab nationalism was a legitimate movement in the middle of the last century. There was a pan-African nationalism that rose up in the later years of colonialism. Both failed in their stated goals, because race is a terrible way to organize people. Loyalty starts with family, then extended family and finally the extended family of ethnicity. Race is a general grouping of people that corresponds to the big geographical groupings. Race is not ethnicity.

This is why American dissidents need to be careful to acknowledge the geographic diversity of occidentals in North America. The old stock Yankee living in New Hampshire may share the same opinions on biology as a Southerner, but they will remain men from different tribes. This diversity among white people in America is why the people in charge have been so successful. They exploit these differences to turn a majority population into a hated minority. That reality must be respected.

That brings up another failure of the alt-right. It never had intellectual heft. Richard Spencer liked to cast himself as a philosopher, but he was always a dilettante, more concerned with media attention, than thinking about politics. He was a lot like Barak Obama, in that his fans would say he was inspirational, but they could never tell you anything he said that was memorable, other than the gaffes. His innumeracy prevented him from making an affirmative argument about biology.

Otherwise, no one filled the intellectual void at the center of the alt-right. Some of the writers for Counter Currents gave it a go, but they were always a bit wary of what was going on with the alt-right. Others would turn up with an essay here or there, but the movement never attracted anyone who was well read and prepared to articulate the main ideas that allegedly animated the alt-right. Instead, it was Spencer rambling on YouTube videos about Faustian man and the ethno-state.

Of course, one reason the movement failed to attract smart people toiling in the intellectual fields of bio-diversity is the movement had a lot of cranks. In fact, the alt-right seemed to be a crank magnet. It was a freak show of e-celebs, who were never all that interested in politics. Guys like Milo and Cerno are good examples. For them, politics is a vehicle to internet stardom. Serious people interested in serious politics will not get involved with a movement that welcomes freaks and weirdos.

That is the one great lesson from the alt-right. No organization can survive incompetence at the top. Whether you are forming a local group to clean up a park or you are organizing for a larger political goal, you have to have high quality people at the center of it. The alt-right made a fetish of not purging people, but that became a doggy door for the worst sorts of people to enter their movement. No matter how cheeky or clever your internet memes, you can’t win counting on losers.

Self-policing, of course, gets a lot easier in real life organizing. On-line, people are free to play any character they like. In real life, people quickly sort the wheat from the chaff, so excluding grifters and lunatics gets easier. Good people tend to boil off the bad people, through the natural social mechanisms. That is the most important lesson of the alt-right. The internet is not real. It cannot replace real life organizing. If there is going to be a resistance to what is happening, it must happen in the real world.

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High On Their Own Supply

A common misconception among the more cynical on this side of the great divide is that the people running grifts like TP-USA are all in on the grift. That the front men are just as aware of the con being worked as the people who finance them. While that can be true, it is not always true. In fact, in most cases the front man is a true believer, who really believes the stuff he is preaching. That’s why the backers picked him. They did not have to worry about him having a crisis of conscience.

That appears to be the case with Charlie Kirk, the deformed looking fellow that is the front man for TP-USA, the synthetic grassroots college group. After hooligans disrupted his college tour with difficult questions, he has reportedly been threatening to quit the show, as he was so distraught over what is happening. He was unprepared for anything but an adoring audience of fellow believers. He expected his college road show to be him evangelizing to fellow zealots. Instead he is being mocked.

When you stop and think about it, it is easy to see that he is not a cold, calculating schemer running a complex grift. For starters, he is not that bright. That’s clear by how badly he has handled the questions from the hooligans. Even a young con-man is quick on his feet when in a jam. That’s what leads them into the grifter lifestyle. Kirk, on the other hand, is completely unprepared for the push-back he is getting, because he just assumed everyone in the crowd believed the same nonsense he believes.

In fairness to Kirk, he is not alone in believing nonsense. The Bush years are a great example of how you can fool most of the people for just a little while, if you give them a reason to feel they are sacrificing for a larger goal. The flag waving and talk of spreading democracy to the barbarians was powerful magic. For people in a fading empire, with an uncertain demographic future, a moral war to make the world right again was a beautiful reprieve from their daily reality.

Now, there are cynical grifters in these scams. Dan Crenshaw, the congressman from Texas, is a great example. Like John McCain, he as figured out how to wrap himself in the flag, while peddling the nonsense paid for by the usual suspects. He’s running around trying to convince young white men to throw their life away on pointless wars in the Middle East, while telling them the future is going to be brown. If one wanted to conjure a modern example of pure evil, Pirate Dan is a good start.

In many ways, these Potemkin movements ginned up by the usual suspects mirror what is done in the pop music business. The sharps who have run that business since the inception, are always fishing for a new act. When they find one, they flood the market with copies until the public losses interest. Then it is onto the next act. Meanwhile, the boys and girls trying to become pop starts are sure they are getting noticed because they have talent. The carny folk prey on those wishing to be stars.

The difference between what is happening with the political hucksters and the entertainment rackets is there is no feedback loop. Music producers have to move product. Movie makers have to sell tickets. The political theater generally lacks such immediate returns. Both sides of the ruling class can rig the venues and seed the audience with fellow grifters, thus having the effect of being popular. Eventually, the people running these scams start to fall for their own con.

That may be what we are seeing with TP-USA. The same sorts backing this racket successfully made that ridiculous hobbit Ben Shapiro a star. They even made the odious Dinesh D’Souza a star in the last election cycle. Of course, they were able to quickly turn the Tea party into a racket. Running these scams has been so easy for so long, they got sloppy. They made the mistake of getting high off their own supply and started making mistakes. The result is the ongoing debacle of TP-USA.

The lesson though is that humans are built to believe. It is a part of our nature that is probably the oldest part of our nature. Belief probably co-evolved with language as a way to allow us to share complex thought and abstract concepts. While modern Americans may have stopped participating on traditional religion, that desire to be a part of a shared belief is still there. People will believe in something. The question is what will they believe and to what purpose will those beliefs point them.

The alternative to the cynical nonsense from the usual suspects is not just a rebuttal of their assertions. It is also an alternative set of beliefs, which in the simplest sense is an alternative vision of the future. “This is who we are and this what we do, because this is the future we want for our posterity” is what holds a people together. Politics is not an argument about the present, but the future. Offer a more promising vision of the future and people will come to believe they can achieve it.

That’s really what these scams are about, when you examine them. They keep conjuring one fake youth movement after another so the young don’t start thinking about a better future than what is on offer. If young whites suddenly stop believing in consumerism, they will believe in and fight for something else. If they stop thinking brown is beautiful, not only is Pirate Dan out of a job, demographic replacement becomes a rallying point around which to oppose the ruling class.

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Materially Hollow

If you wanted to locate a point on the timeline as to when America began its descent into the current crisis, a good candidate would be when the Right decided to focus on economics over culture. While there is no specific day on which they made the shift, it happened somewhere during the cultural revolution of the 1960’s and 1970’s, largely in response to that culture war. When the Right embraced fusionism, the die was cast and events would inevitably lead to the current crisis we see today.

Fusionism was the work of Frank Meyer, a 20th century political thinker, who was one of the founding members of National Review. In the book, In Defense of Freedom: A Conservative Credo, Meyer sought to unite libertarian ideas with traditionalism, into a new conservative ideology to oppose the Left. Instead of defending culture and tradition on their own terms, the New Right would use libertarian arguments to show that traditional culture was economically superior to socialism.

What happened to the American Right is it embraced the materialism of the Left, but sought to use those arguments to arrive at traditional ends. Rather than reject the hollow materialism of socialism and communism, the New Right would embrace it and celebrate it. Man was no longer a spiritual being operating in a material world, but a narrowly self-interested economic unit, who pursued his subjectively-defined ends in the most efficient way possible. Culture now took a back seat to economics.

Of course, what they were doing, even if they did not understand it at the time, was conceding the culture war to the Left. By shifting from a defense of culture and tradition on their own terms, the Right was no longer going to challenge the moral claims made by the Left. Instead of disputing the morality of Progressive reforms, the Right would put on the green eye shade and explain why those reforms were too expensive or upsetting to the economy. The Right became the accounting department of the Left.

Again, at the time, this probably seemed like a clever strategy. Post-war America was concerned about peace and prosperity. If you wanted political power, thus control of the culture, so the argument went, you had to win the argument over how best to achieve peace and prosperity. A political platform that promised economic growth and a foreign policy that promised peace through strength was the winning ticket. The Reagan Revolution of the 1980’s looked like a proof of concept.

The trouble was this could work as long as the general culture remained intact, ready to simply say no to the latest Progressive innovations. It turned out that 20th century conservatism was a free rider, living off the cultural surplus of post-war society. Like the Left, the New Right consumed this cultural surplus, but never contributed anything back to the cultural stock of society. More important, it allowed to atrophy the tools a people need to defend their culture and traditions from the Left.

By elevating economics over culture, the Right could just as easily justify left-wing assaults on civil society. The destruction of small-town America, for example, is largely a right-wing project. They are the ones defending oligarchical operations like Amazon and Walmart, that convert social capital into profits, draining the life from small town America. As long as it can be justified economically, the Right is happy to see these economic pirates raid your town and your neighborhood.

Think of it this way. For generations, social organizations relied upon local businessmen to underwrite them. The local church relied about its wealthy members to pay for the upkeep of the church and bankroll church activities. Local youth sports leagues were sponsored by local small business. Google is not going to pay for the repairs to the church’s pipe organ. Amazon is not going to sponsor your kid’s ball team. The price of cheap goods from Walmart was the spirit of your community.

This is why the cultural decline is accelerating. In the 1990’s, the mainstream of the Left snickered at homosexual marriage. A generation later and you get fired from your job if you are insufficiently enthusiastic for the guy in accounting, who recently started pretending to be a woman. The political Right has no answer for why this madness is intolerable, as they cannot find an economic argument suggesting it is too expensive or bad for global finance. They don’t know why transvestite story time is wrong.

When it all comes down to money, it means every man has a price. More important, it means his price will be at wherever the cheapest seller is at the moment. That’s been the story of the Buckley Right for the past thirty years. They are always ready to sellout to the lowest bidder, thus the culture war turned into a race to the bottom. The wreckage of Buckley conservatism is the result of a political strategy based on knowing the price of everything, but the value of nothing.

If there is to be a revival of the American Right, it must be a cultural revolution, not an economic one. An authentic alternative not only says Bob from accounting cannot wear a dress, but Bob cannot be in our town, as he is not one of us. We don’t tolerate men who wear dresses, because that’s who we are. An authentic alternative rejects economic man and embraces the whole man, who is defined by is community and his role in that community. Spiritual man must reign over economic man.

For sites like this to exist, it requires people like you chipping in a few bucks a month to keep the lights on and the people fed. It turns out that you can’t live on clicks and compliments. Five bucks a month is not a lot to ask. If you don’t want to commit to a subscription, make a one time donation. Or, you can send money to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. You can also use PayPal to send a few bucks, rather than have that latte at Starbucks. Thank you for your support!

Chaotic Evil

Over the weekend, the news brought word that Greg Johnson had been arrested in Norway on incitement charges. The details are still coming out, but the basics are that a far-left group claimed he was a terrorist and the Norwegian authorities just took their word for it and had him detained. Presumably, they will deport him from the country and try to have him banned from the continent. That is a popular tactic for radical extremists to use in Europe to harass Americans they don’t like.

Of course, calling these domestic terror groups radical or extreme is just a way to express contempt for them using common language. It’s not an accurate description of where they stand on the political spectrum. When Antifa or the SPLC can dictate terms to the political class, they are neither radical or extreme. They are the mainstream, well within the conventional of the ruling class. It is what we use to call normal people, with their rules and procedures, who are now the outliers.

This is a lesson that dissidents have to internalize. Many on this side of the divide are stuck in the past, with regards to the political landscape. They assume we live in a rule-based society, in which one can appeal to a neutral authority for relief when the Left violates the rules. If that world ever existed, it is long gone. We live in a soft authoritarianism, where the rules are whatever the people in power say they are at any point in time. It’s not rule of law. It is rule by left-wing fanatic.

As such, the old Chinese curse should always be at the front of the mind of the dissident. That curse is, “may the government become aware of you.” The Chinaman, having lived under some form of authoritarian bureaucracy for thousands of years, is conditioned to understand the reality of his relationship to society. The Chinaman knows that the bureaucrat can and will inflict unlimited cruelty as only a bureaucrat can, if given the opportunity. The wise person avoids making himself known to them.

In the case of modern dissidents in the modern West, it means avoiding any and all contact with the crazies the managerial class deploys as lures and traps. That’s the only utility of groups like Antifa, Hope Not Hate and the ADL. Their role is to keep beating the bushes in order to lure dissidents out into the open. Then they can attack, giving their handlers in the bureaucracy the excuse to bring the hammer down on the people involved in the skirmish. If a few left-wing street activists are harmed, so be it.

The primary weapon of the soft authoritarian is the lie. Because they operate inside a thicket of rules and regulations, they know a well-placed lie can turn those rules into a spider web, tangling up the victim for years. In the struggle to free himself, he may make addition mistakes, allowing other spiders in the system to vomit forth their digestive acids onto the victim. Even if the victim can free himself, he has lost time and resources, making him weaker and more timid.

This is on full display with the seditious plot to overturn the 2016 election. The people involved are not very bright. Most are the sort who, in a saner age, would be manning a rural Post Office branch or maybe stamping forms down at the title office. In a soft authoritarianism, they rise through the ranks, spinning their webs on behalf of the system, getting rewarded for their treachery and deceit. That plot was a revolt of sexless bureaucrats lashing out a reminder of what they are not.

This sort of ruling system attracts a certain sort of person. The type that enjoys tangling people up in a web of lies is a timid sociopath, who hates himself and therefore the world that created him. These are people who can only enjoy what they feel as pleasure by witnessing the suffering of others. Look around the Left and you see sexless, passive males and bitter deranged females. These are people who live to inflict misery on others, hoping it will bring them relief from their own miserable lives.

What this means for dissidents in the West is cleaning the mind of those old civic nationalist notions of a lawful society judged by neutral arbiters. That world does not exist and cannot be conjured into existence. There is no shaming these people into acting like normal people, capable of living in a civilized, orderly society. They are chaotic evil. They have no respect for rules, other people’s lives, or anything but their own desire for revenge against a world that has made them some hideous.

It’s why moaning about the collapse of free speech in the West is just self-flagellation, unless it is to convert people to the dissident cause. The ethos of the modern dissident is to never allow an outrage to go to waste. Use every incident to force the civic nationalist to confront the reality of his situation. For now, the best that can be done is to spread a quiet cynicism about the system. A society of cynical people is much more expensive to rule than a population still under the ether of civic nationalism.

More important though, it means operating in the shadows. The days or organizing in public, holding well-advertised gatherings and participating in constructive public debate are gone. That reality will surely make many angry and indignant, but for a dissident to have any hope, he must always accept the reality of his situation. Otherwise, he will always be drawn into that web of lies and deceits that are spun to ensnare the people into the soft authoritarianism of the neo-liberal order.

For sites like this to exist, it requires people like you chipping in a few bucks a month to keep the lights on and the people fed. It turns out that you can’t live on clicks and compliments. Five bucks a month is not a lot to ask. If you don’t want to commit to a subscription, make a one time donation. Or, you can send money to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. You can also use PayPal to send a few bucks, rather than have that latte at Starbucks. Thank you for your support!