Boomer Cons

During World War II, there was a great debate among the Allies about the use of bombing raids against German cities. Collateral damage was the concern. The Germans built their munitions plants near population centers. There were those in the high command who said that if the Allies used aerial bombardment against these facilities, then they would be no better than the Germans. It would be much better to maintain their principles and lose than win and be judged as morally equal or even similar as the Germans.

Of course, that never happened. There was some debate about the morality of certain tactics, but only in so far as they would result in retaliation. That was the lesson of the Great War. The use of poison gas, for example, just resulted in the use of gas by the other side. As Greg Cochran pointed out, the Soviets may have resorted to germ warfare against the Germans, but fear of retaliation certainly shaped their thinking. If they used biological agents, it was out of desperation and covered up after the fact.

The point here is that in war, the first priority, the overriding priority, is winning. You do that first and worry about morality later. Principles are the things the winners create after they have secured victory. Principles are the way in which the winners consolidate their gains after victory in a war. Imagine if the Civil War had gone the other way and the South had won. Would anyone today tremble at the accusation of racism? Obviously not, because the victors would have had no reason to make racism a mortal sin.

The obsession with principle has always been the central defect of what the kids now call “Boomer Conservatism.” The BoomerCons accept, without argument, the principles and moral framework of the Left and then they try to out-righteous the other side in a pointless game of virtue signalling. It is the basis of the DR3 meme. Even if you are able to “prove” that the “Democrats are the real racists,” all you have done is prove they are right and that racism is the worst thing ever. Even if you win, you end up losing.

And yes, I know, not all Boomers think like this and many younger people fall into the same trap. Lots of young people like the Rolling Stones and The Who, but it is still Boomer music. The cultural upheavals going on today are due to the cultural upheavals that went on yesterday, when the Boomers tossed over the culture they inherited and created the prevailing orthodoxy of today. All of us now live in Boomer Land, which means we live in the moral structure created by the Boomer generation.

Now, the folks with the tricorn hats and “heritage not hate” signs can be forgiven for not seeing the folly of their tactics. They came of age when the general consensus said that the goal is a color blind society. If the bad honkies would just open up their hearts to the black man, all the race stuff would melt away. It was all nonsense, but a whole generation was raised on it and now they struggle to let it go. For most Boomers, egalitarianism is their heritage, so it is understandable that they cling to it.

Of course, the libertarian boomers have turned their love of principle into a ready excuse for not getting into a serious fight with the Left. You see it in this post on the American Conservative.

This month, three conservative protesters rushed onto a New York City theatre stage—and briefly into the national spotlight—enraged by the mock-execution of a character dressed to look like Trump. As a New Yorker fond of civilization I was alarmed at this barbaric behavior because this is how cultures unravel.

Well, that’s how culture wars work. Each side tries to impose their cultural preferences on the other. If you are in opposition to the prevailing culture then what you seek, by definition, is an unraveling of the culture. That’s how you win. Otherwise, you confine yourself to tactics that will never work. For guys like Todd Seavey, principle is a coffin they think will give them comfort as the Left lowers them into the grave.

Again, the Boomer generation can be forgiven for clinging to their principles even if it means defeat. They came into an America that was the colossus, standing astride the world as the defender of freedom and the exponent of economic prosperity. The principles they inherited were cooked up by people who conquered the world. America in the 50’s and 60’s was a society that was sure it had things figured out. If you were ten years old in the early 60’s, truth, justice and the American way made perfect sense.

The last fifty years, however, have proven to be a cultural disaster for America, one that will have to be addressed by the coming generations. In order for that to happen, a counter culture must form that is willing to be called unprincipled as they rush the stage or shout down the people with the megaphones. What ponytails and recreational drugs were for the Boomers, fashy haircuts and race realism will be for the next generations. The young who are rebelling are rebelling against those vaunted principles the Boomers cherish.

The only way a counter culture gets any traction is if it is indifferent, or even hostile, to the prevailing morality. There are two types of principles a people live by. There are those that precede their demise and those they create after they triumph. The people desperately clinging to their principles, lecturing those willing to do what it takes to win, will be buried with those principles. The winners, meanwhile, will be busy crafting a new morality. That’s the lesson of history. The people with a future get to write the past.

Fake News

I think I may have watched a grand total of one NBA game this past season. The games are not geared for middle-aged white guys. The game has been changed over the years to value running and jumping over teamwork and developed skills. The result is that basketball looks a lot like track and field, rather than a skills game. That’s not a moral argument, just a factual observation. I do follow the game through the stat sheet, as it is a good study of human bio-diversity and not just what is on the court.

The other aspect of the NBA that makes it interesting to me is the conduct of the sports media covering the NBA. It is a good model for understanding what has happened to the mainstream media, particularly with regards to politics. The NBA press does very little reporting. There are still game summaries posted on-line and box scores, but those are churned out by interns and robots. The professional NBA journalist does no actual reporting, Instead, he talks about story lines, personalities and other sport reporters.

The recent NBA draft is a good example. Every year the “reporters” claim it is going to be a wild week of trades and deals. Then they spend the week talking about rumors that are made up by other reporters. Those rumors are often just about rumors. It is not unusual to see a story about how it is rumored that a trade was rumored to have been mentioned by someone. Meta-news is news about news. The NBA is now doing news and rumors about rumors. That’s meta-meta-rumor-news, I guess.

The reason for all this is the news media no longer bothers to uphold any of its alleged standards. It was not that long ago that editors required two sources that were actual human beings with a credible claim to know the material. Newspapers might bend this rule, but they never went with copy that contained sources unknown to the editor. That’s no longer the case as editors no long exist in sufficient numbers to police it and the remaining ones simply don’t care. Anything goes so its all fake sources now.

Sports reporters have never been terribly bright or hard working so they have responded to this breakdown in order by doing what comes natural. Instead of working hard to get good stories, they make up semi-plausible stories with fake sources. An NBA trade, for example, will involve two or three people talking by phone. Yet, we’re supposed to believe that some guy at ESPN was then briefed on it by one of the parties. Even more absurd, we’re supposed to believe some blogger “broke” the story. Yeah, right.

The bigger issue though is something that happened in the Jordan years. It has been thrown down the memory hole, but Jordan decided the way to help black sports reporters was to give them exclusive access and deny access to honkies. Guys like Ahmad Rashad and Michael Wilbon were given special access. This made their careers, but it also ushered in the era of access journalism. Players granted access to reporters who were willing to sing their praises in their columns and on TV shows.

Something similar happened around the same time in Washington politics. The Clinton machine was ruthless in controlling the media. They would shutout reporters that did not play ball. There’s always been some of this, as people are naturally going to be nice to those who are nice to them and not so nice to people they see as adversaries. The difference was, the Clinton team turned this into a formal policy and the Washington press corp went along with it. They liked being treated like players so they acted accordingly.

The Bush people could not play the same game, as the Washington media is universally liberal, but they did a little bit of it with operations like Fox and the talk radio guys. Rich Lowry of National Review remodeled the magazine to be a GOP mouth piece for exactly this reason. It gave them access to Republicans. The Weekly Standard largely existed as a public relations vehicle for the Bush family. Much of what has gone wrong with Buckley Conservatism is due to the perils of access journalism.

This is why we see the explosion of fake news. The NBA guys want access or at least the illusion of access. To that end, they tweet out rumors and fake news in the hope of getting a reply from an agent or front office guy. That way they can then shoot down their own rumor or fake news with an actual quote from a real person. “After talking with person X, I can now report that the rumor I reported is false.” Fake news about rumors produces gossip that is eventually addressed by a real person in the news.

That seems to be what’s going on Washington with all the fake news. No one in the Washington media bothered to develop contacts in the Trump team. Instead, they mocked and harassed them through the campaign, figuring they were currying favor with the Clinton people. Now, they have no access so they create fake stories hoping to get a response from the Trump people. In lieu of real reporting, it is provocative fake reporting in the hope of gaining access to real people in the Trump White House.

Now, that’s not to say it is all innocent. Clearly, the major fake news organizations are fully converged, as Vox Day would put it. They are so in the tank for the one true faith, they now resemble a UFO cult. The point of their fake news campaign is to discredit the Trump people. Still, this is the logical result of access journalism. When the path to fame and glory is getting exclusive access to a powerful person, it is no surprise that the media has now turned itself into a PR firm for the rich and powerful.

Utopian Misanthropes

It probably says something about us that we accept the dystopian future of Orwell as being to some degree inevitable, despite the fact he has proven to be wrong about most things. He was not wrong about everything. He got communism right in Animal Farm. His critique of writing is timeless and is probably more applicable today than in his era. On the other hand, the future is not “a boot stamping on a human face — forever.” Not even close. The future is a bot making sure you never get your feelings hurt or have a bad day.

In that regard, Huxley has proven to be the more prescient. Brave New World was much more accurate, especially with regards to the upper classes. Whether or not we will ever be “decanting” humans is questionable, but science may be closer to genetically enhancing people than maybe is proper. Similarly, H. G. Wells understood the arc of humanity was toward a softer end than Orwell imagined. His depiction of the Eloi, and his explanation for why they existed, is being proven out today.

Even so, Orwell is what resonates with us even today, as we drift into the soft authoritarianism of the custodial state. The most likely reason is that at some level, people understand that at the core of every Utopian scheme is a coldness toward humanity that eventually leads to the sort of ugliness we associate with Orwell. Huxley’s future is eerie and disconcerting, but Orwell’s gets right to the heart of it. There is no hope and there is no joy, because in Utopia, those things have been banned.

This has always been obvious with the global Left. They have always imagined a world that, at best, could work for a slim majority of people. The rest of humanity was not going to be a good fit. There are only two ways to solve this problem. One is to “fix” those people who can’t seem to go along with the program. The other is to get rid of those people who don’t fit the new society. It’s why re-education camps have always been a fixture of left-wing societies. It’s also why mass murder is where they always end up.

The assumption is that what drives this is an absolute belief in the blank slate. If people are infinitely malleable, then all of those bad thinkers can be adjusted. Since some defects are beyond repair, the only solution is to remove the defective from the population and the gene pool. In reality, the effort at re-education is always ceremonial. The people in charge go through the motions in order to justify the inevitable. There’s also a fair amount of sadism at work. Leftist regimes seem to take pleasure in culling the herd.

In fact, what may be the main attraction to Utopianism is its underlying antipathy toward humanity in general. Human existence is messy, dirty and frustratingly irrational, but this is also the source of its beauty. There is nothing rational about falling in love. There is nothing orderly about laughing at your own stupidity or your screw ups.  What drives the people dreaming up the perfect society is a hatred of this reality. They hate the apparent randomness, the part that makes life worth living, so they seek to eliminate it.

It is why Whittaker Chambers recoiled in horror at the philosophy of Ayn Rand. Chambers had spent most of his life as an atheist and a communist. He fully understood the materialism at the heart of every Utopian scheme. He saw it right away in Randian moral philosophy. The libertarian dream world is one in which everything about the human condition is squeezed out. The libertarian Utopia is one in which everyone is an isolated economic unit with no emotional ties to anyone.

Libertarians deny this because they hate this truth about themselves. It is the one thing that distinguishes them from the other Utopian dreamers. They flinch at the idea of shoving the deviants into the ovens. Instead, they dream of the isolated colony populated by the productive. What drives the Leftist is a hatred of mankind. They dream of a place where anything resembling humanity is gone. Libertarians, in contrast, are driven by self-loathing, so their dream is to be isolated away from humanity, like prisoners.

Libertarians will dispute this, but they are wrong. They think because they have opposite ends than the Left, they must be the opposite of the Left. It is a form of hive mindedness, though, as things can be different without being opposites, just as things can have similarities, without being the same. It is another feature common to all Utopians. That’s a binary worldview. There are those inside the walls and those outside the walls. It’s why libertarianism, particularly Rand variety, is not of the Right.

It is one of the ironies of the Enlightenment. The people who came out of it with a head full of ideas about eliminating the human condition are cast as the friend of mankind, while those skeptical of these schemes are cast as the misanthropes, the reactionaries. The truth is exactly the opposite. The social reformer, the proselytizer and the Utopian fanatic are all driven by hatred of humanity and themselves. The skeptic, in contrast, is motivated by an appreciation of and a love for humanity and the human condition.

Whatever you care to say about the alt-right and the fellow travelers in the Dissident Right, they at least maintain a healthy respect for the diversity of the human animal and the need to respect that diversity. Throwing a tribe of Somalis into Lewiston Maine is not helping anyone. Diversity plus proximity is misery. The Somalis need their place and the Mainers need theirs. It’s why man invented borders and has always been willing to die maintaining them. Only the sociopath dreams of a beige future and what it would take to achieve it.

The Utopian dreamers start out thinking about all the things they hate about humanity, which if often everything about humanity. They have no respect for people, only disgust which is why they are consumed with changing everything about human society, including the people in it. This why Orwell remains the go to guy for dystopia, over more accurate people like Huxley. The Utopian hopes the future is “a boot stamping on a human face — forever”, while the skeptics suspect he may be right.

The Killing Season

Baltimore has the nickname of “Bodymore, Murderville” because of a high rate of homicide and the habit of the locals spray painting the slogan on abandoned buildings. The other “slogan” you see around the city is a re-write of a marketing campaign run by the city a few years back. The pols had the idea of putting the word “Believe” on everything, so the more clever changed it to “Behave” which gets to the heart of the issue. The city has a huge population of people who cannot behave themselves like civilized people.

Currently the city is on pace for over 360 murders and we are just getting into peak killing season. Usually, the winter tamps down the murder rates as it is just not as much fun to pop a cap in an ass when it is snowing sideways. Similarly, the spring has been very rainy and gangsters tend not to like going out to murder people for their sneakers when it is raining. In other words, it’s possible there is a lot of pent up demand for murder that will now be unleashed with the summer weather.

To put this in context, Boston has about 650,000 residents. People think the city is much bigger, but that’s because of the surrounding cities and towns bunched in next to Boston give the feel of a much larger metropolis. Baltimore is around 600,000 people, if the census is correct, which no on thinks is true. Baltimore has a strong incentive to overstate their numbers as they get more Federal money as a result. Boston is on pace for about 40 murders this year, while Baltimore will have 350.

With that in mind, the city has put the cops on extra duty, allowing for overtime as a way to tell the cops they are sorry for the Freddie Gray fiasco. The official position of the politicians and our Progressive masters is that the Obama administration’s war on cops had nothing to do with the explosion of black homicide. People on the streets know better, but no one cares what they think. Either way, the city’s decision to make a peace offering to the cops suggests they are ready to stop pretending.

The precipitating issue was the murder of a white bartender in one of the nice parts of the city. Long ago, Baltimore pretty much invented the idea of gentrification. Mayor William Donald Schaefer had a dream of fixing his city so he condemned a bunch of houses in and around the waterfront and gave them away to urban pioneers. The one condition was they had to fix them up and live in them. The result was some very nice neighborhoods for young professionals and older people who enjoy city living.

The way the city has managed to keep these nice neighborhoods alive is by having the police keep the blacks in their ghettos. No one says it like that, but that’s the way it worked. They used good old fashioned racial profiling to make sure the homies stayed on the West side and the gentry class whites stayed out of West Baltimore. Local whites will tell you that they have been pulled over by cops when they decided to take a shortcut through the ghetto. The assumption being that they were lost or stupid.

Whether or not the cops can restore something resembling order is hard to know. The lesson the Left never learns is that society is a fragile thing. It’s quite easy to destroy the delicate balance that allows for a safe and civilized city. Topple it over and not only does all hell break loose, but restoring order requires a massive effort. It’s pushing a rock up a hill. If all goes well, your massive effort will get the rock to the top, but one mistake and the rock rolls down to the bottom and you have nothing to show for your efforts.

There’s also the fact that the supporting institutions in the city are always a mistake away from collapse making the job more difficult. The city prison system is just an extension of the ghetto. This was an outlandish example, but it is so common that everyone just accepts it. There are services to help black inmates stay in touch with their friends back in the neighborhood. It’s easy to see why cops and judges get a bit cynical about the system. They know that no one really wants to fix the problems.

There is, of course, the ever present issue of race. You would think that a city like Baltimore, and the surrounding environs, would be teaming with racism. After all, the overwhelming majority of the murders are done by blacks against other blacks. Of the 159 murders, 12 victims were white. In a city that is 60% black, 90% of the victims will be black and 95% of the perpetrators will be black. According to the myths of our age, the Backlash™ from the whites should make life a living hell for innocent blacks.

The opposite is true. Most whites have become habituated to the reality of life in this part of the world. Everyone, white and black, knows the reality on the street. The blacks with anything on the ball do exactly like the whites and that’s put distance between themselves and the black ghetto. That does not stop the Progressive maniacs from ranting about racism, but they do it from high up in the towers of their whites-only neighborhoods. As a result, no one hears them and so they can be ignored.

Interestingly, blacks tend to think of Baltimore as a good city for them. Number play a role as the city is close to 60% black, but that just means there is a thriving black social life, which is not the case in most cities. For the well-behaved blacks, there are black middle-class neighborhoods in the suburbs where they can be around other well-behaved blacks. The irony here is that while we have some of the worst blacks in America, we also have some of the best blacks, too. White people like that. it gives them hope.

The Dead End

Most of the issue that plague our modern societies stem from the unwillingness of our policy makers to consider the obvious solutions. In the 80’s, we had a bum crisis due to the states being forced to fling open the doors to their nervous hospitals. The former patients had no one willing to care for them and no ability to care for themselves, so they ended up on the streets as bums. The obvious answer was to put them back into the asylums, but that was ruled off limits and we still have a bum problem to this day.

The solution to the bum problem was to ignore it and build up a big new bureaucracy for dealing with the bums, while not actually getting them off the streets. That meant a proliferation of not-for-profit organizations that dealt with the bums, using grants from the city, state and federal government. The result is we now have a special interest that works to thwart any effort to get the bums off the streets. Bum maintenance has become an industry with lobbyists and political power. And we still have bums.

The thing is, the Cloud People do not have a bum problem. They “solved” the “homeless” problem by agreeing to use their tax dollars to build flop houses in your neighborhood and they also make sure the bum services industry is located in your neighborhood. You will never see a homeless shelter next to a Starbucks. The cops in Cloud Country are adept at putting the stray bum on a bus and sending him to Dirt Country, where the shelters are located. After all, they are public servants and that is the humane thing to do.

For a minor annoyance like the bum problem, this is not an untenable situation. Even in the ghetto, the crazy guy screaming at cars as they pass by is just local color. For bigger issues, like the black underclass, this approach is unworkable. For fifty years white liberals have been playing a weird game of Old Maid, in which they find new ways to dump blacks from their neighborhoods into the normie middle-class. The normies respond by moving away, but Lefty keeps finding ways to inflict the problem on them.

The primary source of racial conflict in modern America is the Cloud People habit of blaming typical white people for the bad behavior of blacks. Whites don’t care if Ray-Ray guns down Trayvon over a sneaker beef, but they do care when they are told they are responsible for it. Instead of addressing the issue of ghetto violence, we have a whole industry built around race hustling. The dysfunctional black under-class is the source of income for thousands of people with an interest in never solving it.

The Exploding Mohamed is looking like a problem for which the Cloud People have no way to ignore, but they are working hard to find a way to turn this problem into a weapon against the Dirt People. Take a look at this Spectator piece after the most recent incident. It reads like a meditation on how to avoid facing reality. The proposed suggestions, they don’t qualify as solutions, are laughably pointless. You could be forgiven for thinking the writer started by eliminating what will work and then came up with his list of solutions.

The most obvious solution to the exploding and stabbing Mohameds is to stop importing Mohameds. If BMW’s exploded at this rate, Britain would ban the importation of BMW’s and demand the manufacturer recall those in the country. Volkswagen is facing billions in fines for violating trivial emissions regulations. Yet, no one dares say, “there’s a problem with these Mohameds. Let’s put the brakes on importing more of them until will can figure out what’s going on with them.” Nope. It is a mad dash to import more of them.

The trouble is they can’t ignore it, like the bum problem, or even blame the honkies, like they do with black crime. This one is all on the Cloud People, but they can’t bring themselves to face the cause of the problem. Instead, they build out the police state, install more cameras and turn the country into a game preserve. Cynics say this is deliberate, but that assumes facts not in evidence. These people are not that clever. It’s that their multicultural religion forbids them from considering the right answer to the problem.

It is the aspect of anarcho-tyranny that most people don’t get right away. It’s not that the authorities are lazy or disinterested. It’s that they are afraid of their own bizarre religion of multiculturalism. When you rule out the reality of human nature from the tool set, you’re left with solutions that are contrary to human nature. The thing that allows them to rule like tyrants over their own kind, prevents them from raising a finger against strangers and aliens. It is as if a form of Toxoplasma gondii has infected the brains of the ruling elites.

This is not a terrible way to think of it. The typical person in the managerial elite has never had to face the hard decisions most of us take for granted. Theirs has been a life without accountability in a world stripped of the harsher aspects of the human condition. If you have spent your life in the dream world of the academy and the government campus, you can be forgiven for not wanting to question the underlying orthodoxy. As Tucker Carlson pointed out in this speech, it is a great life and no one would choose to leave it.

The trouble is, once you eliminate the axiomatic, you inevitably end in a logical dead end, with no real options other than retracing your steps. Since questioning the one true faith is off limits, the Cloud People spend their days dreaming up fantasy solutions to real problems that just keep getting worse. For something like bum control, nature tends to step in and solve the problem. For a Muslim invasion, the problem will not resolve itself, at least not in a tolerable way, until the fever breaks or the system collapses.

This will not end well.

The Age of the Two Laws

For as long as I have been alive, I’ve understood that the law does not treat everyone equally. We have the theory, all men are equal before the law, but in practice it is something different. This is the product of growing up poor. A poor man, who gets jammed up on a small crime, is going to get processed. That means he will get a public defender, who will negotiate terms with the state. If he hires an attorney, that lawyer will do the same thing, but maybe pulling in a favor from a buddy to get a better deal.

On the other hand, a rich guy will hire a team of lawyers and put so much pressure on the prosecutor, that the roles will be reversed. The state will cry uncle and take the best deal they can just to be done with the case. Joe Biden’s niece, for example, avoided serious punishment for a crime that would put most people in jail. The thing is, this is not a defect in the law. It is the way the world has always been. The rich and powerful have access to all the resources they need to get the best deal they can from the law.

That has always been tolerable as people have always accepted that human societies are hierarchical. The people at the top are at the top for a reason and being at the top comes with benefits, which is why people want to be at the top. Lately though, a new thing is turning up in the law. Slowly, we are seeing a second legal system, a shadow system, evolve alongside, and in some cases displacing, the old legal system. This new legal system is sort of like what anarcho-libertarians imagine. It’s private and transactional.

Instead of relying on the old law, large social organizations, like universities and corporations, are slowly creating a parallel legal system to adjudicate problems that are unique to them. The college campus is the most obvious example. The imaginary rape culture on campus has spawned a new legal system for addressing it. You see it in this story about Michigan State. The cops are in a secondary role, as the university addresses its more pressing issues, while relying on its own legal mechanisms.

Here we have four players accused of sexually assaulting a woman. Instead of the cops treating this like any other criminal complaint, the school is in charge of the investigation and the cops are on the sideline. The school brought in a law firm to do an investigation, provide the cops with evidence and then conduct a wide ranging evaluation of school policy and senior personnel. They have also tried and judged the players, removing them from campus and kicking them off the football team.

This is not an exception. Baylor University did the same thing when they had a similar issue with the football team. To date, one guy has been charged with an actual crime, but dozens of men have been cast into the outer darkness as punishment, for violating secret rules. The school president was forced into exile and the football coach as been banished. He will never work again, despite having done nothing illegal nor violating the terms of his contract. He was tried and convicted in the private legal system.

What we are seeing develop is a separate legal system for the managerial class. Unlike the criminal system, they are not going to have jails and incarcerate offenders. Instead, the land of the Dirt People will be their prison and you will be the tormentor of the condemned. For now, people accused of real crimes, like those MSU players, will be marched out of the kingdom and handed over to the “authorities” for prosecution, but they have been found guilty by the school and cast back into the land of the Dirt People.

The temptation is to say that the schools are responding to the threat of litigation, but that’s a trivial matter. A sad coed can be bought off for a few hundred grand, less than the cost of a low level administrator. The real issue is culture. The people inside want to enforce their values and will do so ruthlessly. The people sent into exile are a warning to those who remain inside. There’s a code of conduct and violations of those rules, as interpreted by those in charge, can result in the ultimate punishment, exile from The Cloud.

This is what we’re seeing with social media. Our rulers like to pay lip service to civil liberties, but they would much prefer it if they could do away with all of them. To that end, crack downs on political expression have been outsourced to media companies. When Theresa May promised to throw more yobs in jail for being mean to the Muslims, she was sending a signal to the big media companies that they need to crack down on dissent and that means banning people who say unapproved things.

This is anarcho-tyranny refined into a social system. The state is unable to perform its basic functions, but it is adept at working with private business to push around the law abiding citizens. There will now be a second legal system run by global corporations to police the speech of citizens. Instead of putting trouble makers in prison, however, they will put them on mute, making it hard for them to communicate their grievances. Users will not voice their complaints to the law. They will appeal to someone is customer support.

That’s where you see the motivation behind the evolution of this parallel legal system we are seeing with the Cloud People. Like so much of neo-liberalism, it is cloaked in libertarian arguments about private entities setting their own policies, but that’s only so it can avoid defending itself in open court or the court of public opinion. In the old law, the process determined your guilt and then your punishment. In the new law, the process is the punishment and a weapon to enforce conformity and submission.

Like so much of the managerial state, it is not clear if it is sustainable in the medium run, much less the long run. Increasingly, males on campus are using the old law as a weapon against the new law. Falsely accused males are hiring attorneys who will do what the new law is too afraid to do and that’s examine these accusers. Most of these claims by coeds are dubious and some are criminal, abetted by college administrators. Eventually, one of these will become a vehicle for a very big lawsuit and settlement.

On the other hand, the future is not written. Thirty years ago, it was laughable to suggest homosexual marriage was a right. The willingness of the old law to submit to the new law is what will be tested over time. So far, the indications are the cops and prosecutors are OK with handing over their authority to colleges and corporations. Maybe the courts, staffed as they are with Cloud People, will happily go along with this new shadow system and all of us will become serfs on one social media platform or another.

The Coming Boomercide

The warning when you are young is to avoid falling in with a bad crowd. This almost always means staying away from the older crowd as they will talk you into doing things that you are not prepared to handle, like drugs or crime. The peculiarity of my upbringing meant that I spent my youth around an older crowd, that was all bad, but I avoided the worst of it. Now that I am on the down-slope of life, speeding down toward the inevitable, I find myself hanging around on-line with a younger crowd and they are all bad.

I’ve never cared for generational politics so maybe that’s why I have no trouble with the younger generation. In my youth, I was forced to sit through endless lectures by Baby Boomer teachers about how Generation X was a bunch of slackers. By the time I reached high school, I could, from memory, draw maps of the Ho Chi Min Trail and recite the playlist at Woodstock, despite having no interest in either. I’ve always thought that my generation’s disinterest was due to having to sit through so many Boomer sermons.

If you are a Boomer reading this, you are no doubt outraged, scandalized and offended at my comments. Just to be clear, I’m not talking about you. You are an exception. In fact, you are unique, like a snowflake, a special creation that stands in stark contrast to the conformity of your coevals. You’re special! That’s always been the amusing part about Boomer culture. They love talking about themselves, but hate it when others talk about them. Everyone is conservative about what think they know best, as Derb would say.

As I said, I’ve never been into generational politics. When I was a teen in the 80’s, having to hear lectures about Gen X being deficient, always left me wondering what they called the kids who came along in the late 70’s? They were technically Boomers, but they were nothing like the people who came of age in the 60’s. Now I’m told that kids who came of age in the 90’s are calling themselves Gen X, which is probably fine to a point. I suspect they are rejecting Gen-Y because it sounds feminine, as in [lacking] Y-chromosome.

Anyway, hanging around the bad kids on-line, I’ve noted their extreme hostility to Baby Boomers and Boomer politics. It’s not the normal youthful rejection of their parent’s stuff as their parents are not Boomers. In the case of the 20-somethings, their parents are my generation. Their grandparents are the Boomers. This means the so-called Gen-Z and Millennials literally want to push granny off a cliff. I’ve read screeds by youngsters to that effect. They really hate the Boomers and not in an abstract way.

The coming Boomercide, if it happens, is going to be triggered by some portly old guys in comfort waist slacks, showing up at an alt-right rally wearing tricorne hats, preaching “heritage not hate.” It is the Boomer impulse to accept the morality of the Left while pretending to reject the consequence of it, that enrages the youth. Whatever you want to say about the alt-right kids, they have this one thing right. Boomer politics is all about the so-called conservatives swearing that the liberals are the real racists, as if it matters.

A big part of this is the Boomer willingness to trust the media. I know. I know. You don’t trust the media. You know they are just a bunch of socialist liberal pinko Democrats. But, that’s just a way of trusting the media. There’s a big difference, a categorical difference, between thinking the media is honestly “biased toward one side” and thinking the media is just a deeply cynical public relations arm for the administrative state. Almost all Boomers will accept the former, while few accept the latter.

This is part of the great generational divide between the young hate thinkers and the Baby Boomers. The young have no trust in public institutions. This is not a thing particular to the alt-right. Bernie Bros are always moaning about the system. The stupid little girl jammed up on espionage charges acted on the basis that the system is illegitimate and lacks authority over her. That’s why she did not think twice about doing what she did. In her mind, the government and its agents are the enemy, with whom she is at war.

This trust in public institutions among Boomers is natural. Most of them grew up in a high trust culture. When they watched TV in the 50’s, the people making the shows were in love with America and promoted 1950’s values. Even into the 60’s, the mass media was supportive of America. When the culture began to collapse, the media seemed to be on the side of those good hearted Progressives trying to make things better for blacks, Jews, women and the disposed around the world. The media was all about good intentions.

Later generations came of age assuming that what was on television was a deliberate lie intended to have them buy stuff. Today’s youth have come of age in a time when the media is clearly the church choir for the managerial elite. Those who take the blue pill, get jobs in the media, singing whatever is in their hymnals. Those who take the red pill, view the media the same way the IRA looked at the Irish, who worked for the British security forces. As a result, they see the Boomers as gullible idiots.

Another aspect of the generation animosity is the Boomer enthusiasm for punching Right, in order to cozy up to the Left. Bill Mitchell is probably the most obvious example. He has turned himself into a cartoon in order to avoid being lumped in with the people the Progs have labeled “far right.” The other day a person on Gab pulled out this old take down of Bill Whittle by Steve Sailer, as an example of Boomer perfidy. In fairness to Whittle, he appears to have taken the red pill, but we’ll see if it holds when the Progs attack him.

All of this could simply be a bit of cosmic justice. The generally accepted theory is that Western culture collapsed in the 1960’s when the English speaking world allowed their kids to pull down the institutions that made all of it possible. That is certainly true. In fact, the Boomers have been like a wave of locusts, sweeping through each aspect of the culture as they aged, leaving nothing but waste behind them. In the 60’s and 70’s they destroyed social norms. The 80’s they destroyed education. The 90’s is was politics.

As the Boomers head into their golden years, they are prepared to bankrupt Western society by becoming a great financial burden, but the youth have other ideas. It would be amusing if the Boomers are eventually vanquished by a youth movement that is, at its heart, an embrace of everything the Boomers rejected. I cannot find an example of restoration genocide, but there is a first time for everything. The phrase “you have to go back” will become the slogan of this thing for a number of reasons.

Not being a boomer or a youth, I have no dog in this fight. I know, I know. “First they came for the Boomers and I did nothing because I am not a Boomer.” That’s a chance I’m willing to take. My guess is Gen-X will be just as easy for the kids to ignore as we were for the Boomers. There’s a lot of Boomers to push off a cliff, so my bet is they wear themselves out before they get to me anyway. At that point, I may have died from excessive amusement, so bring on the Boomercide!

Essential Knowledge: Part X

Note: I’ve taken a bit of break on these posts because they take a bit longer than a normal post and I’ve been busy on other projects. A normal post is maybe a half hour of writing and another half hour of re-writing. If I feel like proofreading it, then maybe another fifteen minutes. These Essential Knowledge posts require a little more thought and they require me finding the relevant links. The demands on my time meant a short hiatus, but I’ll try to get back to doing one every two weeks at the minimum.

We left off the literature portion of this series at the Romantic period. I’ve never been a big fan of this period in English literature. I think I can make the case that William Blake is history’s greatest monster. There are some writers worth knowing about and some works that a modern reader can enjoy. Coleridge’s The Rime of the Ancient Mariner and Kubla Khan, especially for Rush fans, are easy reading and the sort of thing an educated man can sprinkle into a conversation to impress the ladies down at the rest home.

The Romantics were big into poetry so the big names are mostly poets. If you feel you must, then pick an anthology and sample the names that seem familiar, like Lord Byron, Wordsworth and Keats. These things are a matter of taste and maybe you are the sort that enjoys this type of literature. My view on literature is that you should aim to be a specialist on what you enjoy, but a generalist on everything else. That means having some anthologies around to poke through when you are looking for something to read.

There is some good stuff in the Romantic period. Jane Austen is not terrible and you should read at least one of her novels. Pride and Prejudice would be my recommendation, but you can download her complete works for a dollar, so take your pick. Robinson Crusoe by Defoe is a good read. Tom Jones by Henry Fielding is not bad. Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is the most famous work from this period. My favorite from this era is Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels. It’s a fun read, even if you hate Romantics.

The Victorian¹ period is an embarrassment of riches, in terms of English literature. This was also when Americans really started to contribute to the English canon. Even better, the great talents of the era tended toward prose, so you don’t have to suffer through a lot of poetry. The big names on the poetry side are Browning, Carlyle, Wordsworth, Swinburne and Tennyson, but the way to go is with a decent anthology. Of course, you can just read your kids, or grandkids, Jabberwocky and leave it at that.

The prose side of the house is where things get fun. This was a prolific period in English prose and some of the giants of our culture wrote in this era. For the ladies, and the men with a desire to get in touch with their feminine side, you have the Bronte sisters. Jane Eyre is considered one of the top-20 novels of all time, but I’ve always been partial to Wuthering Heights. You can get the collected works of the Bronte sisters for a song. If you still need that feminine touch, then read Middlemarch by George Elliot.

Now the good stuff. I don’t think you can be a literate man without having read Charles Dickens. The Pickwick Papers is great, even if you are not comfortable reading hard fiction. Oliver Twist, David Copperfield and A Tale of Two Cities are also on the list of must read books. You can get all of Dickens for a buck on kindle. The same is true of the collected works of Lewis Carroll. Alice in Wonderland is a great read even if you have seen all of the Hollywood treatments.

I think Oscar Wilde is an overrated degenerate, but The Picture of Dorian Gray is a great book. It’s also a great movie, as long as you stick with the 1945 version. This period was not just the great flowering of the novel. The short story was mastered in this era. The two names most associated with the development of the form are O. Henry and W. Somerset Maugham. I’m more of a fan of the latter, than the former, but that’s a matter of taste. As an aside, I’ve always thought the short story is the perfect format for modern audiences.

This is also the age when fantasy literature and science fiction came into existence as serious literary forms. Dracula is a great book, even if you have seen a million movie versions of it. You should get the complete works of Robert Louis Stevenson so you can read Treasure Island and Jekyll and Hyde, if you did not read them as kids. I recently re-read Treasure Island and it still works for me. Then, of course, is H. G. Wells. I’ve read Time Machine half a dozen times in my life and it just gets better each time.

The trouble with the Victorian era is it is big and not everyone agrees on the exact start and end points. This is especially true of the late Victorians and the American writers that were influenced by their English cousins, but had their own style. I’m going to cover American literature in a separate post so that makes the cutoff a little easier. Even so, there’s a lot of summers at the beach worth of reading just in that 60 year span. It’s fair to say that it was the peak of the English Empire and probably the peak of English culture.

¹I’m lumping some eras together here for the sake of brevity. Read “Victorian” as “post-Romantic up to the 20th century.”

The Glass Jaw

It used to be, and maybe it still is the case, that boys learned about bullies on the playground. There was always some kid, who would push around the other kids. The lesson kids learned was that merely standing up to the bully was usually enough. In some cases, you might have to duke it out, but no matter the result, the bully would leave you alone after it. What makes the bully possible is moral authority. They present themselves as the natural ruler of the rest. If everyone accepts it, then the bully gets to run the yard.

In much the same way, the slave owner has to maintain a moral authority in order to keep his slaves from revolting or running off. The whole point of slavery is cheap labor. If the slave owner has to employ an army to keep his slaves under control and on the plantation, there’s no point in having slaves. He would be better served by hired men. In order for slavery to work, the slaves must accept their natural condition. Like the bully, the slave owner may be outnumbered, but he has the force of moral authority.

One of the least remarked upon aspects of the collapse of Soviet communism was just how peaceful and swift it was in the end. The Poles standing up to their rulers broke the spell. In 1980, Lech Wałęsa scaled the fence at the Lenin Shipyard in Gdańsk, leading a strike against the government. Within a decade, the Soviet empire would collapse and Wałęsa would be elected president of Poland. In other words, the commies were morally and spiritually exhausted and they could not take a punch.

I thought about that when the little guy with the goofy haircut decked the Antifa girl at that Berkeley riot. Everything about her world made sense right up until she took a right cross to the puss and fell to the ground. All she had to do was show up in the right outfit and all the bad people would go away. Then, her bluff was called. The bad man was not intimidated. She no longer had moral authority over him. Her after action comments strongly suggest she had some sort of epiphany on the way to the ground.

The thing is though, the whole Antifa movement seems to have fallen apart after that event. Poor old Gavin McInness is begging them to show up at his events, but all he’s getting is some cranky coeds and a few old hippies. In one of life’s many ironies, the anti-fascists had to manufacture fascists to fight and now the alleged fascists are forced to invent anti-fascist that they can fight. Gavin is going to have to find a new act. It turns out that the Prog street warriors have a glass jaw. They can’t take a punch and they know it.

That may be what we are seeing with Conservative Inc. In the last week, homosexual activist and managing editor of National Review, Jason Lee Steorts, has penned over 10,000 words of criticism aimed at those to his Right, which is pretty much everyone on the Right these days. The first piece was a dismissive critique of neo-reactionary blogger Mencius Moldbug. The second, a much longer piece, is a not entirely coherent rant against what he calls the illiberal critics of grade school “freedom shrines.”

His post on Moldbug is revealing for a number of reasons. For starters, Moldbug has not posted in years. His last serious philosophical posting was half a dozen years ago. He and neo-reaction were a big deal on-line a decade ago. It’s not quite disco, but addressing it now in a serious way is a lot like demanding the record stores stop selling Bee Gee’s albums. What his post reveals, more than anything, is that he and the rest of the Buckley Mystery Cult have not been paying attention for a long time.

The longer post is a more serious attempt to address the many boogeymen and hobgoblins that haunt the minds of Buckley Conservatives. His essay reads like it was written by a committee. He spends thousands of words stroking various aspects of Conservative Inc, for no purpose other than flattery. When he gets into specific topics popular on the Dissident Right, he reveals a depth of ignorance that suggests stupidity has mass. His bit on IQ reveals he is a man who does not know what he does not know.

Whenever you are charged with defending the status quo against criticism, your job is to re-argue the case for the establishment. The rightness of the prevailing order creates its own moral authority, thus reducing even legitimate criticisms to mere quibbles. What’s striking about Steorts’ piece is he struggles to describe what it is he is defending, much less defend it. After 7500 words, the reader is just left with the image of a fussy prig, crinkling his nose up, as if he just caught wind of a bad odor.

For as long as anyone reading this has been alive, Buckley Conservatives have functioned as a palace guard. They defended the status quo by acting as a buffer between critics and the Progressive elites. At the same time, they served as a conduit for middle-class white grievances and objections. Taxes are too high! Government is too big! Pop culture is damaging to bourgeois values! That sort of thing. They were in the passenger seat of Progressivism yelling “slow down!” as the car zoomed forward.

For good or ill, their source of moral authority was as the voice of the white middle-class and the civic virtues that made it possible. They no longer talk about the actual people they used to represent, other than in the occasional genocidal rage. Jason Lee Steorts can’t even describe middle-class civic institutions. He has reduced them to the ridiculous image of a “freedom shrine.” The Buckleyites no longer have moral authority. They are simply another blemish on the face of the Progressive orthodoxy.

How aware of this they are is hard to know. It’s a lucrative racket so they are probably more concerned about keeping their spot on the Left than these larger matters. Perhaps like the Polish authorities, they will just stand aside as a new opposition movement, this counter-culture, grows up to challenge the Left. Perhaps there will be that moment of clarity that Moldylocks experienced as she hit the pavement. Either way, they are morally and spiritually exhausted. What comes next is inevitable.

Iceland

Iceland is one of the weirdest places on earth. In fact, it may be the weirdest, at least that is what many Icelanders will tell you. Some of their weirdness is made up for the tourists, but some of it is made up for their own entertainment. The belief in elves and “hidden people” seems to be mostly for local amusement. The Icelandic Phallological Museum, on the other hand, is harder, so to speak, to explain. But, when you live on a volcanic rock in the North Atlantic, indulging in weirdness is probably to be expected.

The little island republic came to world attention back in the financial collapse when they went bankrupt. Iceland had managed to become a hedge fund with a fishing village attached to it. Michael Lewis wrote a fascinating and humorous piece on them back in 2009. When I was over there last summer, I mentioned this to locals a few times and they had never heard of it. When I mentioned some of the colorful anecdotes from it, they laughed at me like I was an idiot, so Lewis may have been liberal with the truth.

In addition to the Dungeons & Dragons vibe to the place, Iceland is interesting for biological reasons. It is a small and extremely homogeneous population located on an isolated island. That means it makes for a good place to tease out things about the human genome. The genetics company deCode is located in Reykjavik and has been doing a lot of interesting work for decades. The willingness of the population to participate in this research makes it a great laboratory for this type of work.

Another topic of interest is how the people have organized themselves over the last 1,000 years since settlement. Unlike most places on earth, human settlement on the island is very recent and it has been written down. We can only guess about the waves of humans that settled in the Ruhr Valley or along the Thames, but we have written records about who settled Iceland and how they developed their society. It is, in this regard, an interesting anthropological study.

A Norwegian chieftain named Ingólfur Arnarson is usually considered to have been the first permanent settler in Iceland. His legend says he threw two carved pillars overboard as he neared the island, vowing to settle wherever they landed. He then sailed along the coast until the pillars were found. There he settled with his family around 874 and named the place Reykjavík, which means “Bay of Smokes” due to the geothermal steam rising from the earth. As is always the case, historians are not sure if this entirely true.

Eventually, Ingólfur was followed by other Norse chieftains, who brought their families and slaves, settling all the inhabitable areas of the island in the next decades. The Chieftains were Norwegian, while their slaves were Irish and Scottish, according to the Icelandic sagas and Landnámabók, which is a written history of the settlement. This tracks with the findings of modern genetics. That’s what makes Iceland so useful, We have written records and archaeological findings, that are validated by genetic data.

There are two theories for why the Norse fled Norway and settled on a volcanic rock in the middle of the North Atlantic. Legend says it was due to people fleeing the harsh rule of the Norwegian king Harald the Fair-haired. Norway was undergoing a consolidation of power under one powerful family and the losers were heading off for new lands. It is also possible that the western fjords of Norway were simply overcrowded in this period. The general theory for the rise of the Vikings is simple over population.

Once there was enough people to farm the land and create an economy, they set about organizing themselves. In 930, the ruling chiefs established an assembly called the Alþingi that convened each summer. The representative chieftains made laws, settled disputes and appointed juries to judge lawsuits. Because writing down laws could lead to the use of force to interfere with an individual or individual’s property, the laws were instead memorized by an elected Lawspeaker until the next assembly.

Since there was no central executive power, it meant the laws were enforced by the people on an ad hoc basis. A land dispute, for example, would require hiring some third party to act as the judge. Violence against people or property would require the people temporarily banding together to address the problem. This is the sort of arrangement that results in blood-feuds. Consequently,  the writers of the Icelanders´ sagas had plenty of material. Trial by combat was a real thing when it came to disputes.

Iceland did pretty well into the 13th century when the growing power of a few families led to a break down in the system. Rather than adjudicate disputes the old fashioned way, for example, it was easier to go to the head of one of the powerful families for relief. Inevitably, the ruling families began to resolved things, like land disputes, in a way that benefited them over other rival families. This led to other powerful families doing the same in order to check the power of their rivals and soon Iceland was dominated by a few chieftains.

The start of the 13th century known by the very cool name Sturlungaöld, which means “The Age of the Sturlungs.” Sturla Þórðarson and his sons were one of two clans waging war for domination of the the island. This clan eventually won the support of the king of Norway who was looking to exploit the conflict. Sturla Sighvatsson became a vassal of Haakon IV of Norway in 1235, thus allowing the Norwegian king to exercise authority over the island, by backing the Sturlungs against their rivals.

In 1262 Iceland signed the Old Covenant establishing a union with the Norwegian monarchy. It was a nice run as a transactional society, but they ran into the problem of how to deal with inequality once their society was able to amass excess wealth. The rich were not satisfied with being rich, they also wanted power, which means authority over others. It is the natural human impulse and the ad hoc system of governance was unable to respond to this internal challenge. The result was domination by a few.

Of course, they also had the problem of how to deal with powerful neighbors looking to dominate the island. Norway could use a combination of force and political meddling to create the sort of conditions they could exploit. An iron law of the human condition, and of nature, is that the strong come to dominate the weak. In the case of Iceland, Norway was the strong neighbor determined to dominate the island. They were not going to be talked out of it so Iceland eventually fell under her dominion.