Back in the 1980’s, something often remarked upon by conservative writers was the diversity of opinion on the Right versus the Left. By that point the Cold War version of the American Left was on fumes. Their policy ideas had a threadbare feel to them. Most of their leading figures struck people as anachronism. They would talk about labor issues, as if men still worked in factories and women were secretaries. The Right, in contrast, seemed to have a great wealth of ideas and idea makers in tune with the age.
Since the end of the Cold War, the Buckley Right has declined into a dull recitation of lines from a catechism that is no longer relevant to the age. The only thing interesting about the legacy Right is watching the neocons figure out how they will rejoin and subvert the Left side of the political class. There’s also the death watch for their legacy publications like National Review. Those are interesting for amusement purposes. Otherwise, there has not been an interesting idea from that crew since the Contract with America.
For its part, the Left has evolved into a weird spirit cult chasing after bogeymen like racism and white supremacy. From an anthropological perspective, that is an interesting thing to observe, but it is entirely without intellectual footing. It’s also infuriating to see bellowing primitives point and sputter at a heretic so the rage heads of their cult can attack the person. The sad spectacle of the House voting to condemn Steve King as a blasphemer speaks the madness that has gripped our ruling class.
What’s remarkable about the emptiness of the intellectual class is that the West is faced with problems that are unique to this age. Automation, for example, promises to reduce the need for labor to a point where the majority of adults will be idle. The demographics of the West, where populations begin to decline and age is an entirely new problem. The only country working this problem is Japan. These are complex and novel challenges, but the intellectual class is mostly silent on these and other pressing issues.
If you are looking for intellectual diversity and depth, the action is all on this side of the great divide. As the James Watson story reveals, the only place you can find honest discussion of the human sciences is on this side. Whether it is evolution, human cognitive ability or population genetics, the dissident right is the only place where people are discussing the amazing breakthroughs in the human sciences. The most interesting writing and commentary is now on outlaw blogs and podcasts.
Of course, it is politics and current events where you find most people on either side of the great divide, but again, the interesting stuff is all on this side. That’s where you see the great diversity on the dissident right. Jared Taylor, for example, is working the same material as Steve Sailer, but arriving at entirely different places politically. In fact, the two of them have debated in the past. When was the last time anyone debated anything on the other side? The closest we got is Tucker Carlson slapping down Ben Shapiro.
There’s also an aesthetic diversity to this side. The tone and material of Counter Currents is completely different from what you get at The Right Stuff. Greg Johnson is more in tune with the trans-occidental intellectual movement, so his material and commentary is more meta-political. The TRS guys are casual, appealing to an earthier audience. Their primary focus is on domestic issues and identity politics. There is plenty of crossover, but they are clearly appealing to different temperaments and a different aesthetic.
That’s the other thing you see on this side that is missing from the other side. There is an irreverence and a joie de vivre on this side. Say what you want about the TRS guys, but they are having fun being bad. RamZPaul is having a blast interviewing curious people on his YouTube channel. The people on the other side always look like they caught whiff of a bad odor. What passes for humor is a host saying wooden gag lines about Bluermpf. “Orange man bad!” Applause sign lights. Audience cheers. Rinse. Repeat.
When people talk about the political divide in the West, they often focus on practical matters like nationalism versus globalism. In reality, the divide is between the search for factual truth versus the search for moral truth. Not only are the goals different, but the methods are different. Both sides look at the human condition and wonder why things are as they are, but one side seeks to explain the great diversity of man, while the other side seeks to exterminate these differences, in order to reach a moral end.
That’s why there is so much more diversity of thought and opinion on this side. There can be only one moral framework, one set of moral truths. If two men say they’re Jesus, one of them must be wrong, thus the ever narrowing of our intellectual class. As the free thinkers and the curious are cast out, they find their way to this side, having to first cross the river of the damned, accepting biological reality. Living outside the favor of the popular gods is not always a lot of fun, but it vastly more interesting than the other side.