The Faith Of The Left

An argument I have been making for a long time is that the reason the Left has gone from triumph to triumph is that they are not motivated by reason. Instead, they are powered by a quest for salvation. The social issues that they champion, regardless of any practical considerations, are always cast in moral terms. The issue itself is immaterial. It is being on the right side of the issue that matters. Politics is an endless series of tests they must pass in order to remain on the path of the righteous, leading to the promised land.

This story about Obama’s reaction to the election is a good example.

Riding in a motorcade in Lima, Peru, shortly after the 2016 election, President Barack Obama was struggling to understand Donald J. Trump’s victory.

“What if we were wrong?” he asked aides riding with him in the armored presidential limousine.

He had read a column asserting that liberals had forgotten how important identity was to people and had promoted an empty cosmopolitan globalism that made many feel left behind. “Maybe we pushed too far,” Mr. Obama said. “Maybe people just want to fall back into their tribe.”

His aides reassured him that he still would have won had he been able to run for another term and that the next generation had more in common with him than with Mr. Trump. Mr. Obama, the first black man elected president, did not seem convinced. “Sometimes I wonder whether I was 10 or 20 years too early,” he said.

This is a recurring theme with the American Left. It is the reason they embraced the term “Progressive” as their preferred label. They start with the unspoken belief that the story of man is written. It is the duty of the righteous to live it out in order to reach salvation. It’s why “being on the right side of history” comes up so often. They think of the struggle as between those on the side of the great historical force and those who are standing in the way of it. The righteous are always looking forward and moving forward.

It is also why they think of the past as a dark age dominated by the sinners. There is no romanticism on the American Left, because the past is by definition further away from the glorious future. Instead, the past is filled with monsters that were either slain by the righteous, or locked away, but ready to return at any moment. For example, they remain forever vigilant about the return of Nazis, as if they are a real thing that still exist. In the mind of the American progressive “Nazi” is just another name for Old Scratch.

Notice in that Times piece that the Trump voters are described as “left behind” rather than unhappy or in disagreement. In other words, the people voting for Trump did so because they were sad for having been left behind by the righteous. Voting for Trump was a cry for help. It’s tempting to see this as part of Obama’s narcissism, but in reality his narcissism is also the result of this deep belief in the flow of history. He was chosen to lead the faithful, so of course he is a narcissist. What savior would not be a bit full of himself?

You’ll notice that Progressives are forever warning about some attempt to “turn back the clock” and return us to a former state of sin. It resonates with Progressives, because for them, the eternal quest for salvation means going forward, breaking away from the degraded past. Trump’s “turning the clock back” is viewed as the wages of sin. Obama thinks he tried too hard to deliver his people to the promised land. The result was the great leap backward into Trumpism. It is a lament and call to redouble the efforts of the faithful.

American Progressives are the purest form of true believers, because they have disconnected their beliefs from practical considerations. Therefore, they are immune to facts and reason. When you examine the language they use to describe politics and the culture, you see the extreme mysticism. Obama does not even really know what “left behind” means, but he is sure it is a bad thing. For him, it is a purely a spiritual issue to be thought of in those terms. Practical considerations simply have no salience for him.

The error the Right has made for generations is to think it is possible to prove the Left wrong, and therefore force them to abandon their agenda. That’s like thinking you can disprove sections of the Koran and cause the Muslims to abandon their faith. In fact, efforts to do so will always be met with a fierce defense of the faith. Practical arguments always embolden the righteous, as it confirms their belief in themselves as moral agents in a holy cause. Your irrational resistance is proof they are on the righteous path.

It’s why the Left have been so effective since the end of the Cold War, but also why it has become so extreme and bizarre. Defending socialism meant ceding authority to objective data like the unemployment rate or GDP growth. That served as a check on the more unhinged elements. Once free of these objective measures, it became a race to come up with the most extreme and bizarre identity group to champion. Lacking a limiting principle, and untethered from practical reality, the Left got increasingly extreme.

While it looks like the left is headed for some sort of crack up or possibly a dormant phase, it is important to remember that people have to believe in something. The reason conservatism was such a flop is it never tried to appeal to this aspect of man’s nature. It was the ideology of the bookkeeper. No matter how fat, dumb and happy, people will always yearn for the eternal. If there is to be an alternative to the prevailing orthodoxy, it is going to have to offer an alternative to those who desire to be on the side of angels.

Prince Rupert’s Revenge

In my youth, it was possible to have cordial and even friendly relations with people in the Progressive cult. I spent many hours debating my lefty friends over drinks, about the defects of various central planning schemes. Anyone my age or older remembers the way these debates would go. One side talked about economic justice for the working class, while the other side talked about the glory of free markets. Usually, the “right-winger” would bring up the Soviets, as an example of the failures of central planning and socialism.

Often, one side or the other would get mad, but it was rarely personal. People get hot in political debates, mostly because we are social animals. Conflict with people inside our group vexes us. It makes us uncomfortable. That was the thing. Liberals and non-liberals could operate in the same peer group. The reason is the Left and Right back then, agreed on the goals. Both sides wanted prosperity. The Left believed socialism produced equitable plenty, while the Right believed a rising tide lifted all boats.

Thinking back, a strange thing happened in the 1990’s, with regards to my own debates with lefty friends and acquaintances. The debates in the 90’s were almost all about the peculiar personal lives of Bill and Hillary Clinton. The Right was always scandal mongering and the Left was conjuring novel defenses for the degeneracy of Bill Clinton and the personal corruption of Hillary. These revolved around Red Team/Blue Team scat fights, that had little to do with policy or ideology. It was just ritualized tribal warfare.

That changed instantly with the 2000 election. All of my lefty friends and acquaintances went insane overnight.  They hated Bush with the intensity of a fanatic. The wars made it impossible to have a discussion with the Left, outside of things like the weather. Granted, many of us were naive about the lunacy of the neocons and what they were planning, but the Left’s opposition was never more than shrieking madness. How does one debate someone who thinks Halliburton controls the weather and attacked New Orleans?

I remember thinking my lefty friends would return to sanity after Bush left office, but that never happened. A few stopped foaming at the mouth, but for the most part, they crossed into a realm from which there is no return. In the Obama years, they went from one peculiar fad to the next. One week it was homosexual marriage, while the next week it was claims about sex being a social construct. There’s simply no discussion, much less debating, the racial and sexual utopia that is now the center of the Progressive cult.

Looking back, it’s useful to think about the fight between the official Left and the official Right as a set piece battle on an agreed upon battlefield. At the center of both lines was economics. The Right had religious archers and the constitutional conservatives on the flanks, but the center of the army was formed around economic issues. Similarly, the Left had race hustlers, second and third wave feminists on the flanks, but their main line troops, the center of the line, were economic Utopians. They were the main army.

The collapse of the Soviet Union had an enormous impact on the ruling classes of the West. In America, it meant the center of the Progressive army broke and fled in all directions. The flanks, however, the racial justice warriors, the gender dragoons and exotic identity battalions rushed into the center, forming a new main line of the Left. The Right, despite carrying the day, was too busy setting up battlefield trophies to notice that the Left had reformed around sexual and racial fanatics, so they promptly surrendered.

A curious thing is happening to this new center of the Progressive battle line. Their moral certainty about the innate equality of man and his infinite malleability, is crumbling in the face of scientific reality. The release of David Reich’s book is the latest direct hit on Boasian anthropology. The response from the soft sciences, which has been a key intellectual authority for the blank slate Progressives, looks like a panicked flight from the battle field. They simply have no answer to what genetic research is revealing about man.

The tent pole holding up modern Progressivism is the assertion that all humans are essentially the same and that the observable differences are trivial. All of the Left’s arguments spring from that belief. It’s why they insist the magic of white privilege is the reason black crime is so high or rape culture is why girls don’t go into STEM fields at the same rate as boys. In other words, magic is a plausible answer, as long as reality is ruled out as an option. Biological realism explodes the center of Progressive theology.

That’s what we see happening all over the human sciences. Twenty years ago, some guy in a cardigan could claim that racism was learned behavior and their was no biological basis for race. He could be held up as an intellectual authority and therefore, a moral authority. Genetics is undermining the intellectual authority of those preaching cultural anthropology, multiculturalism and the blank slate. The main line of the Progressive army is suddenly looking like a bunch of primitives chanting oogily-boogily.

It’s tempting to say I’m getting ahead of myself, but we have millions of people relying on DNA services to map their ancestry. Genetics is promising new cures for disease and soon, people will be able to get their intellectual destiny for $50. It will not be long before some clever fertility lab begins offering bespoke artificial insemination, using donors with desirable traits, based on their genetics. There’s some of that happening now. People are becoming habituated to the idea that humans are different, because of biology, not culture.

The question, of course, is where does the Left go now. In the late 19th and early 20th century, what we call Progressivism was mostly a Protestant crusade. In the 20th century, they shifted to embracing  the economic utopianism of socialism, with racial and sexual politics as side acts. For the last three decades, the dream of sexual and racial utopias has been the dominant theme of the Left. Once the blank slate is broken on the wheel of biological reality, what comes next? What replaces the center of the line?

The answer could be nothing. There are many currents to American history, but the dominant one is what John Derbyshire calls the Cold Civil War. It is our inheritance from the mother country. The story of America has been the good whites and bad whites, the Roundheads and Cavaliers, fighting for control of the country. It’s also a conflict of visions, where the Roundheads always embraced extreme egalitarianism, while the Right has embraced the natural hierarchy of man. Maybe the end is a Cavalier victory after all.

The Eternal Hive

The late great Joe Sobran came up with the metaphor of the insect hive to describe the group behavior of various sorts of Progressives. It was a useful way of describing the spontaneous cooperation that has always been a feature of the Left.  It is the dominant feature. Progressives will suddenly flock to an issue, all chanting the same lines and howling the same protests, as if they are a trained army of lunatics unleashed on the rest of society. It is a behavior that looks coordinated, but it is spontaneous and instinctive.

The most recent example of this was the reaction to the Dylann Roof shooting at the black church. All of sudden, as if commanded by a super villain from a secret lair, the nation’s Progressive loonies began chanting in unison about the Confederate battle flag. Even the sober minded had to wonder if this was not a planned effort, all setup and ready for the signal from HQ. Within a few hours we went from indifference to Confederate symbols to roving bands of lunatics toppling over statues and digging of Confederate graves.

Imagine the sort of person, who, upon hearing about a shooting, immediately thinks it is time to topple over a statue in their local park. What sort of person sees their coreligionists howling about something and then begins howling uncontrollably as well. Imagine what it is like to have no agency, in terms of how you react to public events. Presumably, there is something stimulating to the person who does this. Perhaps the swarm behavior releases endorphins, freeing the adherent from the torment of reality for a while.

It’s not an unimportant question. A generation ago, Progressives were programmed to swarm over economic issues. Socialism still provided the general framework of their imagined utopia, so they regularly launched into assaults on business, claiming to defend the interests of the working class. Yet, when socialism collapsed, Progressives quickly shifted from socialist utopianism to sexual and racial utopianism. The same people who used to put Darwin fish on their Subaru, now howl about scientific racism.

Sobran was correct to point out that Progressives have the same reaction to perceived threats as bees when they fear a threat. The resulting attacks are not indiscriminate, but they are excessive. The Progressive has a binary view of the world, where those inside are allies and those outside are enemies. In this regard, Progressivism functions like cult, where the focus of the adherents is always on a devil, real or imagined. The difference is, their devil is a shape-shifter, taking on new forms to fit every occasion.

It’s tempting to assume that a pattern must have some causal agent, some intelligent force behind it. It is the nature of man to confuse cause and purpose. In fact, this is why efforts to oppose the Progressive war on the American culture have always failed. The defenders assumed an intelligible purpose behind the actions of the Left so they invested their time in defeating those arguments. In reality, the cause of Progressive rage was always a biological response to what the groups has determined to be a threat to the hive.

Another way the Left functions like a hive is how individual members react to being cut off, even temporarily, from the hive. A lefty in a room full of people it perceives as hostile will become very passive. Reverse the roles and put a normal person in a room full of Progressives and they will attack him relentlessly. It’s why far left TV shows have a narrow, but loyal following. It is how the isolated Progressive can connect with the other members of the hive. These TV shows are the televangelists of the Left

This is probably why the Left has become obsessed with purging dissent from the Internet. Social media now supplements the pheromones used to synchronize behavior of the group. Twitter and FaceBook are becoming neural pathways for the hive, so that far flung members can pick up cues from other members. “Trending in Twitter” is becoming a way for Progressives to know what they are suppose to like and, more important, what they are supposed to hate. Right wingers on social media scramble the signal.

Even though observed patterns may not have a central control mechanism, they must have a cause. In the case of Progressives, it is clearly something biological. Even those who manage to leave the cult, never really lose the hive mindedness. Like reformed smokers, they usually direct this instinct to criticizing their former hive mates. You never see a former Progressive activist that is now disconnected from social causes, living a quiet life alone somewhere. When Lefty leave the hive, it is to serve another queen.

Most likely, this behavior traces back to the dawn of man. A deep, emotional commitment to the group would have evolutionary advantages. Status within the group would be higher for those who were most ferocious in defending the group. Well into the agricultural age, the leader of a people was often the most celebrated warrior. Perhaps this small group instinct manifests in a organized society, as a form of social fanaticism. In all times and all places, the reformer imagines himself protecting the weak from the strong.

Fanaticism, of course, has its utility to organized societies. The Greeks figured this out when observing that warriors were most ferocious when fighting on their own land. When advancing into foreign lands, they became more conservative. A focused, controllable fanatic is very useful in warfare. Similarly, organized religions can never have a shortage of those willing to risk it all to spread the good word. More than a few zealots ended up in the cannibal’s pot, but there were always more zealots ready to convert the cannibal.

This innate hive-like behavior of some elements of Western society has obviously not been a detriment to progress. The thing is though, there has always been a transcendent set of limiting principles, operating like a leash on the fanatic. Christianity, for all its faults, puts hard limits on what people can do to one another. When that is removed, the zealots are free to attack perceived enemies without restraint. Like Africanized honeybees, utopian socialists of various types slaughtered tens of millions they saw as threats.

The key insight of Sobran was that the hive-like behavior of the American Left was not caused by socialism or radical ideology. The causal relationship was the other way around. The hive-like behavior was a constant, a part of the American biology. When the socialist paradise collapsed, the Left switched to sexual and racial utopianism. That means when the current rage heads burn what’s left of society, only to not arrive at the promised land, they will find some new fantasy to embrace. The Hive is eternal.

 

Things Are Looking Up

A pretty good rule of politics is that your enemies will always give you terrible advice. It is a lesson the so-called conservatives and Republicans have never learned. The Left offers them advice and they jump at the chance to take it. The corollary to this is you know you are doing something right when your enemies try to steal your issues. The Tories figured out that UKIP was getting traction on immigration, so they moved right on the issue and offered a referendum on Europe. It worked, even though it tanked Cameron’s career.

We have not seen much of that since the start of the populist revolt led by Trump in the GOP primaries. In fact, the GOP went the other way. The higher Trump’s polls rose, the more they rejected Trump’s issues. It was a weird thing, but the Republicans are not called the stupid party by accident. Even after he won, his own party is struggling to come to terms with the new reality. The Left, in contrast, is good at politics, so seeing some rumblings on the their side about adopting nationalist themes is interesting.

Across the Western world, center-left parties are in trouble: In Germany, Austria, France, and the Netherlands, social democrats have suffered historic electoral defeats. Right-wing populists, meanwhile, have scored a series of victories, including Trump’s election, the vote for Brexit, and the continuing erosion of liberal democratic institutions in Hungary and Poland.

But while many people take for granted an inherent contradiction between nationalism and left-wing politics, there simply isn’t one, either historically or philosophically. Throughout the 20th century, progressives mobilized for social justice most successfully when they spoke in the name of national solidarity rather than focusing exclusively on class-based interests or on abstract notions of justice. Left-wingers often cite the adage that patriotism is the last resort of the scoundrel — and with good reason. But it is important to also remember that a deep sense of national commitment underpins the egalitarian institutions we hold dear.

The historian Michael Kazin put it mildly when he wrote that patriotism “is not a popular sentiment on the contemporary left.” The influential British left-wing commentator George Monbiot has equated patriotism with racism: To give in to patriotism, he writes, is to deny the plain truth “that someone living in Kinshasa is of no less worth than someone living in Kensington.”

Yet in giving up on appeals to national solidarity, the left has forgotten the basic political argument that served it so well in the past: that out of the ties that bind together our national communities emerges a deep commitment to the well-being, welfare, and social esteem of our fellow citizens. This recognizes a basic moral intuition: We have deep and encompassing obligations to those we consider our own, based on a shared sense of membership in a community of fate — or more simply, based on our shared national identity.

American Progressives are pegged as fanatical ideologues, but that misses an essential feature of the American Left. They can turn on a dime and reverse course if it has practical value. In the Clinton years, Bill Clinton scoffed at homosexual marriage. Even Obama seemed to be revolted by the idea. Yet, they spun around on a dime and embraced the whole rainbow collation of sexual deviants when it suited them. Hillary Clinton ran her 2016 campaign on the not so subtle theme that she was an old lesbian.

Bernie Sanders did a lot of damage in the 2016 primary because he had a reputation for left-wing populism. You can be sure that he regrets abandoning his closed borders position that he held for decades. There’s a good bet he would have done much better if he had embraced a halt to immigration as a way to help the working class. The alt-right guys will tell you that some of guys came to their thing from the Bernie Sanders wing of the Democrat coalition. You can bet Democrats have noticed this as well.

None of this should suggest the Left is about to go alt-right, but when old liberal warhorses are on the ropes, because the “New Americans” are voting for their own, you can be sure there is some soul searching going on now. The math says the coalition of fringes only works if the fringe types are just a supplement to the core white vote that has always voted Democrat. Once the fringes decide they want to be in charge, and they have the numbers to make it happen, there’s no room for whitey at the top of the party.

It’s hard to know where this will go. The Left is committed to identity politics and to open borders, but that does not mean they cannot find a way to adopt populist and even nationalist language. On the other hand, the Left has pivoted on issues when practical politics demanded it. Regardless, It really does not matter from the point of view of populists and nationalists. If the other side is trying to figure out how to steal these issues, it means these issues are working. It means we’re doing something right.

Imagination Land

All of us live in a silo of our own making to some degree. We read news sites we like and we like them because they tend to cover the stuff we think is important, in a way we hope is accurate. We admire opinions with which we agree. We hang out with people who share our interests. That’s normal. It’s also normal to know it and know others have different opinions and interests. Most normie conservatives get that Fox News is biased toward the Republicans, but they know all of the other stations are heavily biased to the Democrats.

This self-awareness has never applied to the Left. Every normal person has had a conversation with a Progressive friend where they claim the news is biased against them or is too easy on some conservative they currently hate. They will argue that Fox News is poisoning the minds of the public. When you point out that 90% of the mass media is run by hard left true believers, they scoff and say you’re nuts. The hive mind of Progressives has always allowed them to pretend they are surrounded by a sea of their enemies.

One point made by some on the Dissident Right is that this blinkered view of the world has infected the so-called conservatives. They are blind to the intellectual revolution going on over here, because they stare at Lefty all day. Like people looking directly into the sun, they are blind to everything else. As a result, the legacy conservatives carry on like it is 1984 and Dutch Reagan is riding high. Much of what so-called conservatism is these days is just a weird nostalgia trip, celebrating a fictional past with no connection to the present.

There are many reasons why so-called conservatives are becoming irrelevant, but the main reason is that their good friends on the Left are racing off into a fantasy land of their own creation. Listen to a modern Progressive talk and it is a weird combination of echolalic babbling and paranoia about dark forces that are imaginary. Replace “Russian hacking” with “work of the devil” and their howling makes more sense. Things like “foreign meddling” and “institutional racism” are just stand-ins for Old Scratch.

This increasingly weird disconnect between the Left and this place we call earth shows up in their main propaganda organs. Those old enough to remember reading English versions of communist newspapers can recognize the unintended humor on the front pages of the New York Times and Washington Post. This front page item from last week is a good example. Everything in that “news” story describes a world that only exists in the fevered imaginations of the Left. It was a fictional account of present reality written for believers.

This Andrew Sullivan piece bumps up against this reality a little bit, but from a different angle. His argument is that the fantasy land of academia is casting a long shadow over American society, so it is imperative that the college campus be reformed to look something like reality. His framing of things is mostly wrong because he is just a slightly less berserk member of the hive he is trying analyze. His description of the dynamic on campus, though, is correct. It is a world untethered from reality.

The fact is, the college campus is the apotheosis of Progressive spiritualism. It has been dominated by the Left for as long as anyone has been a live. The constant flow of credit money into American higher education has removed all restraints on the people in charge. They are free to indulge whatever fantasies they have at the moment, as no one ever gets fired and the money spigot stays open. As a result, the American college campus is the full flowering of the Progressive imagination. It’s Wakanda for cat ladies.

This lurch into madness is the result of plenty. Up until recent, the threat of nuclear annihilation and the lack of universal prosperity has reined in the excesses of the Left. In order to win elections, Progressive politicians had to focus on better economics and expanding opportunity. Of course, the Cold War kept everyone focused on practical reality, as a mistake could have set off a nuclear exchange. That’s no longer the case as prosperity is near universal, in human terms, and there are no looming threats.

Progressivism has always been a spiritual movement. It is the quest for cosmic justice based on the notion that we are only as good as the weakest among us. That is a fine and noble sentiment, as long as it remains a sentiment. The reality of scarcity has always kept this spiritualism in check. As we enter into what appears to be a post-scarcity world, Progressives are free to explore the far reaches of their mysticism. The result is a ruling class that is looking more like eastern mystics, than pragmatic rulers.

It is why civic nationalism is a dead end street. You see it in the Andrew Sullivan piece about the campus culture. What he is arguing in favor of is the same things we hear from civic nationalists. They all agree with Progressives that we need a unifying religion. They just want a debate about the contours and end points of the religion. The fact that no one has ever pulled this off without ushering in a bloodbath never gets mentioned, Instead, all of these folks prefer to frolic in imagination land, where all their dreams come true.

Dealing With Lefty

Most of us have a Progressive or two in our lives that we have to deal with on a regular basis. No matter how hard you try to avoid talking politics or current events with them, it always happens and you come away frustrated by the experience. The reason for this is Lefty is nothing but political, so even discussing the weather can lead to them veering the conversation into something like global warming. Progressives have politicized every nook and cranny of life, so dealing with a liberal means wrangling over Progressivism.

What makes it doubly frustrating is that normal people tend to treat people as if they are normal, rather than members of a bizarre religious cult. You forget yourself and make a reference to current events and all of a sudden you’re wrangling with Lefty over some topic in a way you find deeply frustrating. Usually they take something you have said and twist it around so that you find yourself trying to defend something you never thought much about or you never intended to discuss. It’s as if they exist to be a social irritant.

That’s the first rule when dealing with Lefty. As soon as you realize you are dealing with one of these people, accept that everything they say is somehow the opposite of reality. The Progressive mind is a lot like the mind of a criminal, in that it assumes its own guilt and acts accordingly. The criminal says things to lead prying eyes away from their own culpability. The Progressive will accuse others of things he or his cult is mostly like doing at the moment. When they accuse X of something, it means Lefty is probably doing it.

The Russian hacking stuff is turning out to be a great example of this. Exactly no one in America thought about the the possibility of Boris and Natasha scheming to upset the last election, until out of the blue, Progressives started saying it. A year later we have learned that it was not Trump working with the Russians, but members of the cult inside government that were scheming with the Russians. None of this would have come to light, but the guilty minds of the Left compelled them to accuse others of their criminality.

Similarly, the Progressive, on an individual basis, will seek to shift the focus from the topic at hand to something related, but far enough away from the topic to send the conversation off on a tangent. The most common method is “What about X?” Mention some failing of Progressives and Lefty will blurt out “what about X among your right-wingers?” Normal decent people respond to questions and Lefty uses that decency to avoid addressing the failings of his cult. Lefty naturally shifts the focus off himself.

Another trick Lefty will use is to start talking about exceptions. This is another way of distracting from some obvious truth, like the fact blacks commit a lot of crime, to a debate about exceptions and outliers. The alt-right boys call this tactic NAXALT, as in Not All X Are Like That. As with the above tactic, this is all about shifting the focus from an unpleasant topic for Lefty. Put the two together and in a few questions, Lefty can shift the conversation so far from the original topic, you no longer remember what you were saying.

This is why you always avoid answering a question from Lefty. The surest way to send him into a panic, is to respond to the “What about X” trick with “Let’s not lose focus” and then return to the original point. An alternative is “We can talk about that, but first let’s focus on” and then get back to the issue. This almost always causes them to spasm as they are being forced to address an unpleasant topic and what they thought was an easy escape is now turning into a trap. Often, they just walk away or explode in anger.

That’s the thing to keep in mind when dealing with Lefty. You can no more convince them to question their faith than you can talk a schizophrenic out of being crazy.  All they can be for you is a prop, or, if you get good at tormenting them, a toy to kill some time when the you have time to kill. This is the hardest thing for normal people to accept. Normal people think they can cure Lefty by presenting facts and evidence. There is no cure. These people are forever lost to a form of mental illness. Just accept that and act accordingly.

Most important, when dealing with Lefty, always make him the focus. A good tactic is what that British dunce Cathy Newman tried to do to Jordan Peterson. “So what your position is…” is a good way to focus on Lefty in a very personal way. They hate this. They want to believe they are simply accepting transcendent truths, rather than their own individual opinion. That’s the thing with people in cults. They hate themselves. That’s why they are in a cult so they no longer have to face themselves or have their own identity.

By personalizing the topic, re-framing it as their opinion or their belief, it has the effect of separating them from the herd. Often they will become quite passive and even submissive. That’s because Lefty has no opinions of his own. He truly is the Borg and the Borg is him. He sees no separation between himself and the faith, so isolating him rhetorically makes him feel detached from his true identity. It’s why liberals always set their chat shows up as a gang attack on some helpless non-liberal.

Finally, always insist on clear, plain language. A central tactic of the Left is to disrupt the opposition by sabotaging the language. The habit of expanding the definition of words to include fringe or dubious examples, then contracting the definition to exclude the original stuff. The use of modifiers to turn definitions on their head or neologism that conjure banal or even pleasant images for negative things. The game is to force you to accept their language, which is a back door way of forcing their moral framework on you.

Somewhere To Run

One of the themes of this post at American Renaissance last week, was that there is no where for the race aware white person to go in America. The war on whiteness is happening at every point on the social structure and in every town in the country, even the rural areas where whites dominate. Wherever white people congregate, a cosmopolitan wrecker will be there to try and brown the place. Therefore, there is no running away from the slow moving white genocide being perpetrated on us by our rulers.

The generally accepted view of this process is it will play out in one of two ways. One version has Team Brown, which is the coalition of blacks, Hispanics, miscellaneous foreigners, Jews and white feminists, will become the new ruling class. The alternative, the Alt-Right version, holds that whites will become race aware and unite against the dusky hordes to form an ethno-state. In fairness, there is a CivNat version, that argues in favor of unicorn riding leprechauns, but no adult takes them seriously.

Looking at the current fight over immigration, it is not hard to argue with either vision of the future. Team Brown is unwilling to give an inch on their plans for unlimited non-white immigration. The only justification for this is they are seeking to replace whites in America via the miracle of open borders. Logic further dictates that even the dumbest tricorn hat wearing BoomerCon will eventually wake up to this reality. Think about how many people you know who were CivNat a decade ago, but are race realists today.

Neither of those scenarios sound appealing and that’s an important thing to keep in mind when looking down the road. Given enough time, human organizations faced with two bad choices will evolve alternatives. It’s a natural result of seeking to mitigate the costs of each choice by addressing the underlying premises. In the case of American racial conflict, the underlying premise is that the future is a transcendent, winner take all, fight that will be decided in Washington and imposed on the rest of us.

That’s not the only future and probably not the likely one. Look at what is happening in the states. The other day I wrote about one of the consequences of the marijuana legalization efforts at the state level. Here we have, for the first time in generations, the states forcing policy changes on the Federal government. In fact, the most likely result is the states will force the Feds to retreat from this area of civic life. The regulation of recreational drugs will be a local issue. Replace “marijuana” with “discrimination” and the enormity is clear.

Another thing going on in the states is the idea of disaggregation. When you look closely at the CalExit thing, what you see is not a secessionist movement, but a reductionist movement. California is too big to manage as a whole, so the culturally homogeneous areas will be broken off from the culturally Progressive zones, to form at least two states, but there is no reason the concept could not result in three or four states. California has 40 million people. Rhode Island has a little over one million people.

What’s going on in California is possible because of something that has been going on with Progressives for the past thirty years. They have been self-ghettoizing. The ethnic cleansing we see going on in coastal cities is so Progressives can have swanky urban centers in which they can live. When you look at the last electoral map, at the county level, you see the slow re-segregation of the country between Team Brown in urban areas and Team America everywhere else. The blues will get bluer while the reds get redder.

This cultural reorganization of America is undermining the premise of a unified national culture dictated by our coastal elites. Therefore, that winner take all fight is becoming less and less likely. Further, the Progressive instinct to leave, unless they can dominate all others, an instinct they inherited from their Puritan forebears, is one cause of this reorganization. It’s why Progressives are talking about abandoning the national model in favor of the smaller, local, more autonomous model. Peaceful separation, so to speak.

It’s important to keep in mind that Team Brown seized on open borders and mass immigration when they began to lose the support of white ethnics. Progressives controlled the national government from the Civil War forward, but had to rely on urban white ethnics for building a coalition. Once those voters started joining Team America, Team Brown needed new voters and we got the 1965 Immigration Act. Then twenty years later they built on it with the 1986 amnesty. Open borders is a defensive strategy.

If Trump is able to strong arm Republicans into ending wholesale immigration, Team Brown’s strategy for dominating the nation is foreclosed. When even minor setbacks, like the 2016 election, results in calls for retreat, it is not unreasonable to wonder if the Progressive pendulum is about to swing the other way, away from national dominance back toward local autonomy. It’s been a little over 200 years since the Hartford Convention. Perhaps this is the end of a long cycle and the return to normalcy.

An Immoderate Age

Last week, this ridiculous article in the New York Times generated some attention on alt-right social media, mostly because it allowed for some petty bickering. Anytime the media does a story on alt-right people, the guys not mentioned take the opportunity to say bad things about the guys that were mentioned in the story. John Derbyshire said everything that needed to be said about the Times piece in this post at VDare. In it, he referenced his old column on the topic and the corresponding version from Jared Taylor.

Taken together, it is good example of how the hive mind is unable to address reality on its own terms. Mx. Audrea Lim, of the New York Times piece, cannot consider the possibility that there could be more than two opinions on a subject. For her and the others in the Progressive hive, there are good people, the people inside the walls, and bad people, those outside the walls. The good people hold the correct opinions, while the bad people have other opinions, that are all bad. That’s as much of the world she needs to know.

As you see with Derb and Taylor, there is a wide range of opinion on the Dissident Right about subjects like race, identity, immigration, race-mixing and diversity. Even the alt-right has a diversity of opinion on these subjects. Calling any of these people “white supremacists” is about the dumbest thing possible, but it is just one of the many scare phrases Lefty has for those outside the walls. Not only are there few, if any, white supremacists on the Dissident Right, there are more than a few non-whites.

The fact is, the Dissident Right, in all its permutations, exists because our Progressive overlords lack the capacity to understand nuance. Take miscegenation, for example. It is a fact of life that some very small number of females, of any race, will have a mating preference for males outside their race. Males are far less choosy, as their biology favors the shotgun approach to reproduction, while the female favors the rifle approach. This reality is just salt in the stew of life and if left alone, nothing anyone need worry over.

For people in the hive, this is an impossibility. You either completely and totally embrace something, or you completely and entirely reject it. It is why they squeal about homophobia if you are not enthusiastic about the latest perversions. The Progressive mind cannot accept the possibility of being indifferent to something. It’s why our television shows and movies are now packed to the gills with race mixing. Even though our rulers live like Klan members, there is no limit to the amount of race mixing they will pack into the culture.

The hive minded also struggle with abstract reasoning. Richard Spencer likes using the concept of an ethnostate to explain his opinions on race and identity. It’s a useful way of getting people to break free from the concrete world of the here and now to imagine an alternative ordering. Spencer is not advocating for a new country to be carved out of Canada as a new white homeland. It is a mental model meant to illustrate certain points about race and identity. The hive minded, however, assume he wants a honky homeland.

Diversity is the salt in the stew. Some races like more than others, but no people wish to be overrun by people not like them. The Chinese have always been careful to limit the number of non-Chinese into their lands and limit where they can go in China. Africans tend to murder anyone not in their tribe. Europeans, in contrast, are fine with cosmopolitan cities, where you see lots of diversity, as long as the home team remains in charge and atop the social structure. Like seasoning, diversity works in moderation.

That’s the core problem in the modern age. Our rulers lack anything resembling moderation. If a little immigration is good, then they want unlimited immigration. If a few temporary guest workers is good, they want the entire white workforce replaced by helot labor from over the horizon. The vulgarity of having Americans train their foreign replacements at places like Disney is driven by a near total lack of moderation. If one Hindu is good, a whole building full of them will be heaven on earth!

We live in an immoderate age. We saw that in the past election and we are seeing it now in the efforts to craft immigration reform legislation. No one would oppose a small, limited amnesty for some illegal invaders, who have been here for a long time. As long as it comes with tough measures to limit further invasions and protections against future backsliding on the issue. Trump’s wall creates a permanent lobby in Washington in favor of border protection. Programs like e-Verify alter the hiring culture to prevent labor abuse.

The package of proposals from the White House is reasonable and sensible. It is a practical response to a public policy problem. If the the compromise includes legalizing a few hundred thousand invaders, a civilized people can accept it. But the people in charge are incapable of moderation, which is why they blew up the talks and are demanding a blanket amnesty with no conditions. Again, the hive minded can only understand the world in binary terms. It is those inside the walls versus those outside the walls.

There is no reasoning with fanatics. As much as many on our side want to believe that practical issues are what’s behind the multicultural madness, the fact is the people pushing it are not reasonable people. They are all or nothing people. That’s why this cannot end well. The people in charge either succeed in pulling the roof down on the rest of us, or the rest of us are forced to do what is necessary to dislodge the lunatics that have seized the high ground of the culture. Moderation is not the answer to fanaticism.

This will not end well.

Elephants

Watch a TV show or movie from the 60’s or 70’s that touched on current events and you are likely to see a character mentioning something about Africa. Biafra was a big deal for a while. Eritrea once got the attention of Americans. Zaire was another African country that turned up in popular media. Read anything about Progressive politics from the era and African causes were all the rage. The New Left was deeply into liberation movements and Africa was where the last European colonies were gaining independence. Africa was cool.

Of course, the 1980’s brought South Africa to center stage for the America Left. It was the easiest way to be pro-black, without having to move to Oakland. Lefty could be super-pro-black, from the safety of the college campus or Hollywood studio. In one of life’s little ironies, one of Mel Gibson’s biggest films featured him fighting South Africans, who were portrayed by actors obviously directed to act like Nazis. Everyone knew South Africa was going to be the example that proved Africans could run a first world country.

No one talks about Africa very much these days. On the college campus, the word “de-colonization” still pops up in papers, but it is now used by mentally unstable feminist academics in their howling about white men. No serious person talks about colonialism or what happened to the former colonies. Even South America is ignored by the American commentariat, other than to praise the wonderfulness of immigration. What used to be called the Third World has largely been forgotten by our Progressive rulers.

The reason for this is Africa, in particular, stands as proof against everything the modern Left says about the human condition. There are no success stories in Africa. Botswana is the closest you get, but it remains one of the poorest places on earth. The rest of Africa is a collection of failed states and basket-cases. Sierre Leone, for example, is no longer able to maintain its water supply and power grid. Nigeria is in a low-grade civil war with Muslims and Zimbabwe is the glaring example of the African failed state.

No one talks much about Africa for this reason. Whenever it pops into the news, the American media handles the topic like a skunk at a garden party. They crinkle up their noses, get through the story and then forget about it. American troops are conducting operations in Niger and no one seems to care. It’s why the end of Robert Mugabe has largely been ignored. Rhodesia, as it was called under white rule, was a great Progressive cause 40 years ago. Now it just another story of Africans discrediting the narrative.

You see, Africa is the example that counters everything our Progressive rulers believe about the world. If the blank slate is true, then Africans should have made great strides in closing the gap with the white world. If things like “institutional racism” were real things, Africa should be racing toward modernity now. If colonialism was the reason these places were so backward, a half century of freedom should have gone a long way toward curing the effects of the white man. Instead. everywhere Africa is worse than a half century ago.

The response from our Progressive rulers is to just ignore Africa. You see it in this National Review article on the end of Mugabe’s rule. The authoress is young, so she was poached in the warm liquids of multiculturalism her whole life. Her struggle to explain the decline of Rhodesia into Zimbabwe reads like a person trying to disarm a bomb while blindfolded. She not only avoids the elephant in the room, which is race, she leaves the reader with the impression that there is no such thing as elephants. Race does not exist.

That’s why Africa stopped being important to our Progressive rulers. It’s why the efforts of George Bush to do something about AIDS in Africa was largely ignored. You can’t talk about Africa without talking about race and race realism. Those are taboo subjects, so the whole continent may as well not exist. Bring up the subject in a room full of Progressives and watch their reaction. You won’t see fear. It will be confusion. The subject has been purged from the catechism, so it no longer exists. Africa is not cool anymore.

That’s why Africa should be a central topic on this side of the river. It is the easiest way for the normie on the other side to begin his journey. It’s a topic where the facts are so stark, it is easy to understand the basics of human bio-diversity, evolution and the cognitive differences between groups of humans. The group characteristics on display in Africa, also look like what Americans see on their televisions. There’s also the great divide between East and West. The Dark Continent is a living museum of human evolution.

Africa is also a useful lever against Lefty. Most of what our Progressive rulers say is some sort of moral posturing. Talking about the most important graph in the world is a good way to turn that against them.  A good rule of life is to always focus on what Lefty is trying to ignore. It usually means they fear the topic. Africa is the biggest elephant in the room right now, in terms of demographics. Lefty wants you to believe there are no elephants, so it is a good time to fall in love with the elephants.

Warring With The Cult

Last weekend, Richard Spencer tried to hold his annual conference. The vehicle Spencer uses to run his alt-right thing is the National Policy Institute, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit based in Montana. This is a standard thing to do these days, for any sort of activism. It allows rich people to quietly fund activities, and take a tax deduction for it. It also gives solo acts a way to fund their activities, without having to keep a day job. Once a year, Spencer has a conference and dinner for the people interested in his efforts.

Last year was the infamous Heil-gate episode, where Spencer’s imprudence got himself in trouble. Since then, Progressives have been working hard to un-person him and anything he touches. That linked video has 2.8 million views for a reason. As a result, he was unable to book the Reagan Building for his event, which is a violation of Federal law, but the people in charge think the law is for suckers. They do what they want. As a result, Spencer was forced to find another venue for the event.

A weekend conference organized by white nationalist Richard Spencer was shut down after the owners of the Maryland farm he rented discovered he was behind the event.

The think tank that Spencer leads, the National Policy Institute, hosted the conference for about 100 people at Rocklands Farm, a winery and events venue in Montgomery County. Spencer said in an interview that a third-party logistics company contacted Rocklands Farm on behalf of the National Policy Institute this month and didn’t reveal that white nationalists were affiliated with the event when they booked it. The company told the farm’s management only that it was a “corporate” gathering, according to Spencer.

The conference started about 11 a.m. Sunday and was scheduled to continue until 8 p.m. Caterers at Rocklands Farm served brunch, and participants recapped 2017. At about 4 p.m., Spencer said, someone working the event learned that Spencer was there, and management told everyone to leave.

“We didn’t lie, we didn’t deceive, and we certainly did not break any rules while we were there,” Spencer said. “We had sharp words and were obviously disappointed, but there was no confrontation of any kind.”

The farm refunded the group’s money after asking it to leave.

The owners of Rocklands Farm didn’t comment on the incident beyond a statement on their website Monday, which says it proudly does “business according to family values, including welcoming people of all backgrounds, race, ethnicities, cultures, and religions.”

If you go to the source article, the picture of Spencer they use is from his thing at the University of Florida. OK. Stock photos are standard stuff in the news business. Then they use a picture of a black protester from that Florida event. That has no place in a story about something entirely different and 3,000 miles to the north. It is an important lesson that no one on our side can seem to get through their thick skulls. The people in charge are perfectly willing to lie, cheat and steal to win. They are not bound by any rules.

Putting that aside, the highlighted portion of the story is illustrative. This is the sort of the stuff Gentry Conservatives wave around claiming they have their principles, while the winning side is riddled with hypocrisy. The winning side, however, just shrugs, because as far as they’re concerned, that quote is the model of logic. That’s the nature of cults and the people inside them. The rules and tactics of the cult are the model of moral perfection and timeless logic. You not getting this is proof that the adherents are anointed.

Cults have an internal language that only the members fully understand. The zombie who issued that statement knows that “family values” means the cult’s definition of family values. By “people of all backgrounds” they just assume it excludes people outside the cult. The people outside the walls are not really people. They don’t exist as a flesh and blood humans. It’s the same reason the Puritans had no trouble burning Indians and chasing Anglicans off into the wilderness. They did not see them as human.

I’ll also note that the Washington Post story is not an actual news story. The Five W’s could have been done in a paragraph, which by the conventions of news reporting make it not worth doing. It was a non-event. That’s why the bulk of the story is folklore and legend now popular with the cult. There is the Charlottesville reference, the preening and pleading of the fearful restaurant owners and so on. This is written as a cautionary tale for other cult members. “Beware! If you are not vigilant, the Nazis will show up at your door!”

It’s why it is useless to bother engaging with these people at any level. It’s better to imagine them as a colonizing tribe of aliens. There is no middle ground, no room for agreement, because their reason to exists, their core identity, is based on wiping out all non-believers. Anything that even hints at compromise, is seen by the cult as a direct threat to its very existence. That’s why they take so much pleasure in stalking guys like Spencer around and preventing him from living a normal life. It’s what defines them.