Optical Delusions

This post from last month drew a lot of responses, mostly from people who did not want to go along with the conclusions. Someone made a 20-minute response to it on YouTube, making what they call the defense of the big tent. In light of the recent controversy over Nick Fuentes getting banished from YouTube, it is a good time to revisit the whole issue and the topics that surround it. Fuentes is probably the best known purveyor of the good optics argument, so that is highly relevant to this.

For starters and to clarify a few things, the creator of that YouTube response makes some mistakes that are common in these discussions. The first one is to frame the issue as between a big tent and presumably a smaller tent. That was not the point of the column and that is not the issue at hand. One can have a broad-based movement that also excludes people who think they are Roman emperors. Even the biggest of big tent claims have limits on what is and what is not accepted.

The second claim is to conflate the term dissident right with other sub-cultures that may or may not have claims to being right-wing. It is a form of binary thinking to define right-wing as anything not tolerated by the Left. The goat blood drinking pagans calling themselves Roman emperors may not be liked by the Left, but that does not automatically qualify them as dissidents or even right-wing. The left is not all that fond of scientists these days, but most scientists are not right-wing.

Then there is the use of the term dissident. In a generic sense, sure, lots of people would fall under the definition. Anti-Semites, for example, are in dissent from the prevailing orthodoxy on antisemitism. That’s most certainly true. Would that put them in the same club as someone like John Derbyshire, the guy who coined the term dissident right twenty years ago? How about Steve Sailer? Calling all of these people dissidents is as useful as calling them mammals.

The fact is, what distinguishes the dissident right from the conventional right is not just opinions on the human condition and biological reality. What ultimately divides the two camps is the lack of ideology among the dissident right. It is the old Russell Kirk observation about Right and Left. Conservatism is not a set of ideologies, but the rejection of ideology. Conventional conservatism has embraced the Left’s ideological views on human nature, which is the roots of the dissent among the dissident right.

This divide also exists within dissident circles. Anti-Semites, ethno-statists, fascists, third positionists and so on are ideologues. The root of their dissent is they have a different vision of the model society from prevailing orthodoxy. Similarly, they are never in doubt about the possibility of it. Like the Left, to quote Kirk, “they see politics as a revolutionary instrument for transforming society.” That is an important difference between them and the dissident right.

Now, in the YouTube clip, the narrator makes some of the common claims about optics and “punching right” that are popular in certain parts of dissident politics. For example, he claims early on that the alt-right was ruined by the media, who highlighted weirdos and lunatics in their coverage. In reality, the alt-right was doomed when the face of it became a narcissistic dilettante, incapable of organizing a one car funeral. A serious movement never would have tolerated Spencer as the leader.

The whole Spencer fiasco puts the lie to the claims by some that optics are unimportant in their politics. The sole reason Spencer rose to become the face of the alt-right is he looked good on camera. He presented an appealing face to the cause, so he quickly became the face of it. The reason why some of his former followers stick with him is they think he makes their cause look good. It is nothing more than a coping strategy to pretend appearances don’t matter. They always matter.

Another point that needs emphasis is that the whole “no punch right” business was the creation of people trying to sneak into more legitimate politics. You never hear this from people who can function among normal people, despite holding heretical views. It was the dubious claim that a right-wing movement cannot have legitimacy unless it is tolerant of people who have not updated their views since the 60’s. It was, in the end, an effort to co-opt dissident politics by the 1.0 crowd.

Then there is the issue of taboos, which is raised at about the ten minute mark of that YouTube clip linked above. Unsaid, but implied, is the claim that excluding certain people from dissident politics reinforces left-wing taboos on certain opinions. The claim is that excluding people, who are bad for the image of the group, automatically gives legitimacy to the left, by reinforcing left-wing taboos. In other words, trying to present a good image is playing by the Left’s rules on politics.

This is the error of all reactionaries. Instead of developing an internal logic that naturally results in a set of rules and standards, the reactionary simply responds to what he perceives to be his opponent. To be a reactionary in a society run by ideologues is to be a rebel without a cause. Whatever the people in charge of for, the rebel is against and whatever is taboo, the rebel embraces. The modern reactionary is someone who puts a leash around his neck and hands the other end to his opponent.

It also relates to the optics debate this way. Imagine a society that has been ideologically tuned to associate the color purple with heresy. There are regular ceremonies where the bad people are dressed in purple and defeated by the good people. To go around wearing purple would certainly challenge the taboo, but it would also convince most people you are nuts. Unless you have the power to dispel the taboo, breaking them just gives the people with power the chance to reinforce that taboo.

The irony of the reactionary is that ultimately, he embraces the core starting point of all ideologues and that is the binary universe. The ideologue sees the world as white hats versus black hats, good guys versus bad guys. You are either inside the walls with the good people or outside the walls with the bad people. Those taboo breaking reactionaries, with their disdain for optics, embrace the same view. You either break the taboos or you must embrace them. There is no middle ground.

This is why reactionaries fail. Most of life is in the vast middle ground of exceptions, conditions and contradictions. Most people get that. They get that politics is always about trade-offs, half-measures and compromise. You don’t win them over by being as fanatical as the people you oppose. You win them over by juxtaposing your apparent reasonableness against the fanaticism of the prevailing order. You do that by making concessions to their morality. You don’t wear purple.¹

There is the final point worth making here. Those who deny the value of presentation always say, “The Left is going to demonize you anyway.” They mistakenly think optics and presentation are about winning over the Left or abiding by their rules. Again, this is the mind of the reactionary. Good presentations and subtle compromises to convention are about winning over the vast middle. The point of politics is about controlling the field between the various sides.

Yes, the Left will call us Nazis and fascists no matter what we do, but that can only be turned to our favor if it looks absurd. Spencer was easily demonized because he embraced the role of prep school Nazi. Nick Fuentes is not so easily demonized, because he reminds most white people of their kids or grand-kids. He may be a smart-alecky twerp at times, but calling him a Nazi violates bourgeois sensibilities. To put it another way, it is very bad optics for the Left.

Politics is always about keeping the ends in mind and making the necessary compromises to further those ends. Politics is a means to an end. Ideologues always fall into the trap of thinking politics is an end in itself, which is why ideological states are always unstable and usually short lived. Successful outsider politics has to be practical in its application in order to win ground in the vast area that is always up for grabs between the orthodoxy and those challenging it.

¹Anticipating the response from certain circles, the Nazis winning the street battles with the Bolsheviks in Weimar Germany is an exception, not the rule. The middle had collapsed in Weimar Germany, along with the old ruling order. The Right and left, as understood at the time, were not fighting to win over their fellow Germans. They were fighting to fill the power vacuum that resulted from the collapse of the middle.


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Paintersforms
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Paintersforms

Disquieting possibility: the extremists anticipate a collapse of the middle and are simply acting accordingly. Maybe extremists always do this, or maybe they’re blind, or maybe they’re on to something.

The order is so eroded that I think it’s a battle of wills to decide what comes next. Having lost institutional dominance, does the normally meek middle have the guts to hold?

Gauss
Guest
Gauss

I had a similar response; the middle seems to be collapsing. This may be an illusion stemming from social media and the sharp left turn the Democrats have taken in the wake of OrangeManBad’s election. The counter to this view is that most people don’t follow politics and most are not on Twitter. They’re not looking for anyone to rock the boat because they are relatively comfortable. The last thing they want is to have some wingnuts take over. Anyone who looks likely to upset the order is going to be viewed with suspicion. Democratic Party regulars are getting scared… Read more »

ronehjr
Guest
ronehjr

The White middle is collapsing. It is rapidly being replaced by a light brown middle, while anyone who isn’t ashamed of being white is going to be identified with these people( https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/64-white-supremacists-prosecuted-by-doj-receive-820-years-in-federal-prison/ar-BB102rk2?ocid=spartandhp) We need to get White people to identify with us before they jump over to the new middle. There is no scenario where a party of street fighting Roman saluters will topple this govt. We need intelligent, talented, normal White people who want to survive and procreate to form a block, or blocks, to start dissenting also.

Compsci
Guest
Compsci

Not sure I follow all your thoughts in today’s posting, Z-man. They are in many ways well above my level of understanding. I then attempted to listen to the YouTube posting you referenced—I simply could not. The person you refute seems to be thinking (let’s call it that in all charity) while he is talking. It is way too painful to follow. I do not disagree, nor agree. I simply tuned out. There is no reason for it. He has all the time in the world to script (think through and edit) his argument before recording and posting. I assume,… Read more »

Member

I couldn’t make it more than a minute. He has the male version of vocal fry. Very unpleasant. Also it’s a month old and only has 88 views. Doesn’t seem like he’s a real mover and shaker in the movement

T. Morris
Guest
T. Morris

I had full intentions of struggling through the entire 18:30, but had had enough by about the 6:30 mark. You didn’t miss anything in that additional five and half minutes, in case you were worried about it. Ha, ha.

By the way, at the time of this writing he is up to nearly 200 views. So I guess he owes our host a big debt of gratitude.

Diavolobello
Guest
Diavolobello

88 views lol

Member

One of the many things I hate about the new century is that video has replaced text as the primary means of presenting ideas and arguments. You see this across fields as diverse as technology (how to build an amplifier circuit, etc…) and politics. I have tried to make videos on technical subjects. Even though I had written things down in advance I found myself rambling and going off on tangents. I then sat there editing clips together at a ratio of (optimistically) 1 hour editing for every 5 minutes of relatively coherent and watchable video. IOW, it’s harder than… Read more »

Compsci
Guest
Compsci

Yep, heck I ramble even when I write—and I know it. The only thing that somewhat saves me is that typing takes time and one simply quits after awhile—thereby saving both myself and the audience even more pain. 😉

BadThinker
Guest
BadThinker

Agreed times one thousand. I cannot sit and watch a video when it would make so much more sense for it to be a simple blog post. Podcasts are ok when im driving but video is so slow.

Shadowbass
Guest
Shadowbass

I agree with most of this, but the constant internecine war between different groups and individuals on the dissident right is stupid, and wastes a lot of time, and effort. Just for crying out loud, IGNORE them. Attack the Left, and just ignore people who are annoying you. Everyone seems to have a chip on their shoulder. We are a gorilla army that’s spends more time attacking each other, than who we all hate in the Capitol. We take one step forward, then 2 back, because someone can’t just ignore an insult. Too many egos….

John Smith
Member

As a Yesterday Man, one of the big mistakes we made was taking our eyes off Lefty, and letting ourselves be distracted by his stick handling. He got inside our decision loop and in no time he had us chasing our own tails. Then he started moving goal posts, changing the rules, and our focus became “Get Lefty”… and we looked like idiots. We lost the media and then we lost the schools and even most of the churches. Look around boys: most of those institutions are failing or are dead already. They don’t work anymore. The dissidents are going… Read more »

Paintersforms
Guest
Paintersforms

‘Get lefty’ becomes ‘become lefty’. Funny how that happens. Stare into the abyss too long and you become the abyss.

Member

@Paintersforms – well, yeah. The whole game is to delegitimize lefty, to make people agree that wine-soaked cat ladies and trannies and the rest are the ones responsible for our problems. It’s either that or else we remain the problem – I say remain the problem because our side has been scapegoated for a while now, and we’re losing). Lefty gets this, which is why he has such a thin skin for mockery. Mockery is the first step to reframing the target as a possible scapegoat. That’s one reason I’m not down on twitter, memes, and the rest of it.… Read more »

Paintersforms
Guest
Paintersforms

Yes. I meant if you spend too much time getting in lefty’s head you start to think like lefty. Then you’re fighting on his terms, and that’s a losing battle. That opens the door for subversives to steer the right leftward. People instinctively get this. When Hannity talks about offering real alternatives and clear distinctions, he’s giving a voice to what even normie senses. I’m sure it’s gone on for a long time. From Eisenhower to Goldwater to Nixon to Reagan to the tea party to Trump, and probably much longer. But nobody cuts to the quick. Trump comes close… Read more »

Gravity Denier
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Gravity Denier

Lefty gets this, which is why he has such a thin skin for mockery. Mockery is the first step to reframing the target as a possible scapegoat.

The tyrant fears the laugh more than the assassin’s bullet.

Tarstarkusz
Guest
Tarstarkusz

“The dissidents are going to go mainstream sooner rather than later. They will have to be ready because Leftie has lost his chit. Look at that election coming up – the democrat candidates look like the cast from SOAP and sound like them too.” There are hour long montages of all the really smart people in America gloating about how Trump cannot win covering from mid 2015 all the way up until election eve. They were saying this right up the eve of election day when the votes started coming in. Then reality hit. Moods turned sour. People cried. They… Read more »

Member

It’s entirely possible that Bloomberg’s going to buy the election. He just gave Stacey Abrams 5 million and she’s going to support him. He just starts passing around money like that and he could get a lot of support. I don’t think anyone’s going to be screaming my principles! He might even make Stacey Abrams his vice president. Yikes!

Dutch
Guest
Dutch

Bloomberg spent $170 per vote to win the NYC mayor’s race. If he spends $170 per vote this time (130 million voters, and he needs a bit over half), that’s about $12 billion. The man is worth $54 billion. Would you spend 22% of your net worth to be king of the world, especially if spending down over 90% of your net worth would be irrelevant to your lifestyle? Furthermore, much of that spending was “pass around money”, in the old-school fashion of simply going out in the neighborhoods and passing out wads of cash, in the style of Oprah… Read more »

Tarstarkusz
Guest
Tarstarkusz

That’s a lot of money with no guarantees.
I don’t even know why anyone would want to be president these days. Everyone thinks you are something close to a dictator, while in reality, you have thousands of people fighting you no matter what you do.
I fully expected Trump to face a lot of shenanigans from the Congress and deep state, but even I was surprised at the level of blocking and maneuvering they have proven themselves capable of.

Dutch
Guest
Dutch

Tars, a few things here. One is that a very old guy who has succeeded in big ways, but is still not satisfied, can still want that golden ring for its own sake, to be able to say he has done it. I think that was one element of Trump’s quest, Another is that Trump has publicly dissed the man, and continues to do so. Like the milquetoast that goes all road rage, sometimes people simply have scores to settle, and trying to look rationally at something that has an emotional element to it makes it hard to comprehend why… Read more »

Tarstarkusz
Guest
Tarstarkusz

I wasn’t disagreeing. I was just saying it is incomprehensible to me. But then again, I ain’t in the club either:)
You gotta have massive respect for Netanyahu. Talk about brass balls! He was on Twitter bragging about how (((little-hat \Americans,))) working with the Israeli state, got the BDS movement illegal in like 1/2 of the US states. Unfortunately, I don’t think there will be an Israeli collusion story in the (((press))).

Dutch
Guest
Dutch

Netanyahu plays in a rotten sandbox, but he does have brass balls and is doing some unappreciated and non-understood good things for his own people. He is a very effective advocate for his crowd. We all need those effective advocates for our own crowds. That’s how the game is properly played.

Major Hoople
Member
Major Hoople

We get organized, and become an actual base, then the leader will appear.

BadThinker
Guest
BadThinker

The civil service/contractor/lobby complex that actually runs things have had their own agenda for years. The idea that politicos actually have real power is a useful tool to keep the sandwich in place. Trump never understood this, he thought he was going to be the CEO. Yes the president still has a remnant of power, but without a serious exercise of it ala Jackson amd mass civil service firings he will never get to use any of it.

MBlanc46
Guest
MBlanc46

He doesn’t have to buy all the 65,000,000+ he only needs to buy a few at the margins. Those at the margins are a bit more expensive, but the total will come in at far less than $22 billion.

Major Hoople
Member
Major Hoople

I don’t know, I think the idea of Bloomberg going out and simply buying the black vote is pretty damn funny. Maybe they aren’t as dumb as the IQ norms say? After all, they are getting something for their vote. What did we get?

Compsci
Guest
Compsci

Not much of a prognosticator, but am a former New Yorker. Bloomberg has a record which has yet to be told to middle America. He is a conniving Eastern Lefty fascist—but I repeat myself—a free booter of the worst sort.

He has the personality of a dead fish. If Trump is Hitler, this worm Bloomberg is Goebbels. And if he does buy the Presidency, It will serve to rouse the population of normies more than we ever could.

james wilson
Member

Due to the amazingy odd collection of Rats running for the nomination I think Bloomberg saw, exactly as Trump once did, that he had a real shot at this. I’m making him #1 right now because all the others have a hard ceiling. The main difference between Trump and Bloomberg appears to be in the quality of pussy around them.

S. Bishop
Guest
S. Bishop

Wow! So these are the ‘progressives.’ They are running the Democratic Party like the ward healers of the 1930s in New York and Chicago. I guess with inflation the cost went up, but they still use today’s version of the ‘walking around money’ which they’d spread around to local party hacks, gratuitous promises and provide adult beverages to bums on skid row – which they have now resurrected in numerous Democrat-run cities.

Member

There is still an entire wing of Republicans that hate him so much they will vote Democrat.

I think that’s more of a feather than a wing.

The Babe
Guest
The Babe

Their candidates are terrible, but remember, we’re becoming a third-world country, and third-world countries get truly embarrassing politicians. (Just look at the astoundingly terrible “black leaders” we’ve got now.)

(And I think you could argue that Trump himself is in the third-world style.)

The challenge is going to be to stay first-world people in a third-world country. As you suggest, that will become a kind of leadership in itself. And make you a target for the third-worlders.

Dutch
Guest
Dutch

Bloomberg also fits in really well with both third-world politics and the current politics of the left. He gets his way by the distribution of “walking around money”, which really matches the Dem platform of “free everything”. What people don’t understand is, just like it is not who votes that matters, but who counts the votes, it is not the walking around money that matters, but who is in control of the walking around money. You can be a glad recipient of free stuff, but if you are not the one passing it out, sooner or later the freebies stop… Read more »

LineInTheSand
Guest
LineInTheSand

“But while making the rounds and introducing herself to the troops, Outlaw (the first black female police commissioner of Philadelphia) said, people kept pointing out that her black nail polish technically violated the department’s directives on appearance.

So in one of her first official actions as top cop, Outlaw changed the rule to allow for more stylish nails.”

Member

I want me and mine (blood and race relations) to win. Not particular about the means and i see no reason to restrict freedom of action by defending ideologies or principles not essential to my objective. Let my descendants figure out what it all means and what principles can be sussed out of it all. AFTER me and mine win.

Tarstarkusz
Guest
Tarstarkusz

The big mistake these guys make is they think early 20th century victories by outsiders can be replicated today under entirely different circumstances. The dissidents of the early 20th century were up against very weak states which few people in the state had a lot of confidence in and belief of the validity of that state. The existing states also did not have deep and broad support in the population. This was particularly true in Germany and Russia. From 1918 to 1932, the German people went through unprecedented suffering. America is an absolute utopia in comparison. The newly created Wiemar… Read more »

Dutch
Guest
Dutch

I am not so sure about the perception of the legitimacy of the state any more. Normie’s assumptions have been shaken (hence the collapse of the political center), but he knows not where to turn. Some vague version of our thing appeals to many, but the powers that be have flagged it as a “no-go zone”. As Normie prefers to play by the rules, as they are told to him, he does not come our way. Yet. In the meantime, Bloomberg and Hillary scheme. They may just take things in the fall election. That would ultimately blow the lid off… Read more »

Tarstarkusz
Guest
Tarstarkusz

While I agree there are a lot of unsatisfied people, I would say that they are still committed to the system. They still believe in Democracy, equality and the Constitution. Normies want to grab the reigns of power, but they don’t think the system itself is illegitimate. There is almost nobody saying “Democracy” sucks and that we need a fascist dictator or a king. They fundamentally agree with the system. The fact that we are even discussing what the normie thinks is a tacit endorsement of liberal democracy. My guess is that Jews don’t want Bloomberg to win. That would… Read more »

Dutch
Guest
Dutch

Agreed, Normie is not nearly there yet. But things move fast these days, and preference cascades are hard to stop, once they get started. My concern is that even if Normie really begins to buy into the WANVOWOOT thing, getting him to come our way is going to be difficult for a lot of them. They are herd animals, and, as far as I can tell, coming our way may always entail their breaking with the herd. Personally, I am adopting elements of Stoicism, MGTOW, and a bit of belligerence. None of it turned up to eleven or anything, but… Read more »

Member

WANVOWOOT?

Member

Stared at it long enough: “We Are Not Voting Our Way Out Of This.”

Calsdad
Guest
Calsdad

I think if they’re still committed – then they’re committed to what they *think* is the system. Normie will still wave the flag, talk about the Constitution, expect that everybody is paying their taxes and that Social Security isn’t getting looted ….. etc. I bring this up over and over again – but as far back as the 1930s Garet Garrett wrote about how the FDR administration cut out the underlying structures of the Republic and replaced them with the “progressive” structures that enabled the progs to use the government for their own purposes – while wearing it like a… Read more »

Rwc1963
Guest
Rwc1963

I would say a lot of the MAGA types are waking up to the fact that the state is illegitimate and there is no justice to be had if you are on the wrong side. MAGA sites like the Gateway Pundit illustrate it every day showing the raw deals Flynn, Stone and Trump got. How the FBI and DOJ are run by the swamp for the swamp etc. Tucker points out on his show the collective silence from the GOP in regards to how Stone has been treated and tells us to expect the same. What to do? At this… Read more »

Jack Dobson
Guest
Jack Dobson

The FBI/DOJ jumped the shark with its failed coup. It receives absolutely no respect from MAGA types already, and normies are getting there. Minorites, save the Jews who use it as paid mercenaries, already hate the North American KGB. Given state oppression previously was given the patina of legitimacy by the FBI/DOJ, the agencies’ diminution doesn’t bode well for the Deep State in the long haul. I have no idea where this goes, but there is a state of hostility between a substantial minority and its rulers, and that trend appears to be accelerating toward outright majority opposition. It already… Read more »

Bartleby the Scrivner
Guest
Bartleby the Scrivner

Legitimate?
McCabe admitted to lying under oath, and the DOJ is still not going to prosecute! Maybe that’s simply a two tier justice system. Yeah, that’s it. The rest is legitimate. Sorry Tars, but when my Whackadoddle acquaintances start raising their eyebrows, I think even they are catching on.

Chris_Lutz
Member

Talking about being reactionary reminds me of the people on the Right whose immediate reaction to the Ground Zero Mosque was to call for a strip club to be build next door. It was stupid and counter productive.

The thing about Lefty taboos is to pick ones that make the Lefty’s looks nuts. Marching around in Nazi gear is bad. Mocking them over their fear of the OK sign is the way to go.

huzzuh
Guest
huzzuh

Gay strip club.

ReturnOfBestGuest
Guest
ReturnOfBestGuest

I don’t think it was counter productive at all. It was answering one deliberately offensive provocation with another. Fighting fire with fire, as it were. In the end neither was built (there are already plenty of mosques and gay bars in NYC.)

The Wild Geese Howard
Guest
The Wild Geese Howard

The real problem with the GZM is that normies swallowed hook, line, and sinker the taqiyya that the GZM is a monument to peace and reconciliation.

Anyone that understands the true nature of Islam knows this is absolutely incorrect. The GZM is a monument to Islamic victory and humiliation of the West in its very core.

Rwc1963
Guest
Rwc1963

Hardly reactionary, it was quite proper considering what the presence of a Mosque symbolizes in Islam. The Muzzies were rubbing our nose in s**t.

Yves Vannes
Member

Every movement has a trail of dead ends, cul-de-sacs, burnouts, mummified corpses and all sorts of other detritus. They all had their little roles and most no longer matter. As someone here pointed out a few days ago the dissident wave is building. Some studies have almost 75% of whites thinking about white group interests in some form or other. Let’s put our energy in communicating intelligently with these people. Let the dead bury the dead. What’s the bigger tent, a click of carping screw-ups or more than 100,000,000 white people who are beginning to sense that something is rotten… Read more »

Carl B.
Guest
Carl B.

When freedom dies out – and it has pretty much died out globally – what “movement” is left that doesn’t involve death and destruction?

Member

The tide of tyranny overall has been rising globally. Perhaps this is where it crests and recedes. Perhaps it keeps rising and the whole planet eventually looks like a scaled up UK, with security cameras everywhere, and a license being needed just to take a shit. We don’t know but we still have time to stop it and roll it back. I think anything that starts in the US, for good or ill, will spread virtually everywhere due to modern technology and communications. Whatever happens in the US to restore freedom may be more or less violent but I imagine… Read more »

Calsdad
Guest
Calsdad

That’s actually a good point to address. Because one of my answers to lefty types in the past – when I approached their argument about why more government power was needed for this , that, or the other thing from a “libertarian” perspective was to argue that we didn’t need more government – what we needed was more freedom. This – of course – elicited howls of anger and screaming about how I wanted people to die in the streets and how I was racist and sexist and so forth. My follow-on argument was: ” Look – if you finally… Read more »

The Babe
Guest
The Babe

I think the most clarifying thing would be the defining of goals. Then you can decide “optics” issues in light of that goal. Otherwise you’re kind of bickering without really knowing what you’re bickering about. Hey, what the heck, I’ll go ahead and define our goals: (1) White identitarianism (2) Ethnostates You might say that the first goal is the pyschological condition of the second, more ultimate, goal. You might also that the first is a fallback position if the second becomes unobtainable: we might become “diasporized” in our own countries because of demographic change and will have to survive… Read more »

Member

If I understand your admirably laid out logic, the Dissident Right occupies a space on the Venn Diagram where we find those who reject the ideology/ies of the Left and also the ideologies of the Right (civnat) and any other dissident ideologies (antisemitism, TradCath, etc.). They either have no ideology or if they do, they keep it to themselves (private opinion). That sounds like Conservatism 1.0, a la Kirk. Of course, it failed. These are Francis’s “Beautiful Losers,” what Hegel would call the fallacy of the Beautiful Soul (too good for the world). Add a British accent and you have… Read more »

Member

@James_OMeara – Well, yeah. If you wake up one morning and discover you are being made the scapegoat for all that ills the community, then your goal is to avoid that fate. I agree it doesn’t really count as an ideology, but saving your skin can still focus one’s mind, don’t you think? But if we must have a goal, it would be something like: we want lefty and his individual water-carriers to be blamed for what’s wrong with society, and to have them marginalized, ostracized, or otherwise removed as a threat. It’s more complicated than that, of course, because… Read more »

ReturnOfBestGuest
Guest
ReturnOfBestGuest

What’s the story with Fuentes getting banned? I know he’s made enemies on both the left and grifter-right, but what did he do that he hasn’t always done?

Rwc1963
Guest
Rwc1963

Both Conservative Inc and the Left ganged up on him. He was a threat to both and they silenced him. He actually hurt them unlike the DR that is mostly a cerebral kegger for spergies. Z can spin it as he sees fit. But that’s where anyone or group that is a threat to the status quo will end up. This is why there is no real 3rd party in the U.S. The DR can offer it’s belly to the ruling class all it wants, but once it crosses a threshold, they will stomp into a bloody pulp. Too many… Read more »

Dave
Guest
Dave

All politics ultimately settles on Stalin’s method for solving problems: Eliminate the people who are causing them, in his case, Trotsky & company. Right-wingers like Suharto and Pinochet correctly identify Communists as the source of problems, eliminate them, and prosper. Left-wingers blame and eliminate productive citizens, turning their nations into Venezuela, which now lies prostrate, just waiting for a competent right-winger to invade, rout the starving remnants of its army, and declare himself king. So my strategy is to lay low and survive until the left annihilates itself and the right-wing death squads take over. Survive hell so I can… Read more »

Ris_Eruwaedhiel
Guest
Ris_Eruwaedhiel

You can kill a man, but not kill the idea. Leftist ideas must be routed once and for all and replaced with something else. Chile elected a socialist in 2006 and again in 2014. It’s like cutting a dandalion at ground level without pulling up the root. It’ll just grow back.

What that “something else” is … well, that’s the question.

UFO
Guest
UFO

Hmmmmm

Hmmmmm

Hmmmmm

are we even allowed to say it…

Member

René Girard had an interesting take on one of the stories of demon possession in the Gospel of Mark. Of course, for Girard, everything is mimetic, so the idea was that this particular unfortunate was living among the tombs, covering himself with filth, cutting himself, hurling himself against rocks, and so on was part of living out the role of the scapegoat. It was a coping strategy: Look, I’m already the scapegoat. I’ve done everything you would want to do to me already, so there’s no need to beat my head in with rocks or throw me off a cliff.… Read more »

Member

On the topic of “ideological states”: I think this is actually the whole problem with all modern societies. They have ALL turned into an endless civil war (sometimes hotter or colder) between various factions who all want to be the ones to decide what the “perfect society” is. There doesn’t seem to be a consistent faction that just believes there is no perfect society and just wants all the ideologues to STFU, put down their megaphones, and leave the rest of us to get on with our lives. Of course in a way this is my “perfect society” – a… Read more »

JR Wirth
Guest
JR Wirth

My thoughts on this are that the dissident movement is not at a point where a coherent ideology is important, or even desirable. It’s a collection of rag tag groups on the perimeter of the establishment, or within the establishment but no longer accepting the programming and hiding that fact in a bifurcated life. You can’t build a new structure until the old structure is thoroughly discredited (See Saul Alinsky) and they discredit themselves every day at this point. So a “dissident” has to be anything outside the Overton window. That includes this site. That includes Nick Fuentes (there’s something… Read more »

Member

” You can’t build a new structure until the old structure is thoroughly discredited”

I think you hit the nail squarely on the thumb here: The major task is to convince (or rather to confirm, because most suspect ) that we are witnessing societal collapse, that all major institutions are complicit.
Then let that sit for a while. Exact details of what we ultimately hope for would be a bit premature- especially as we don’t really know.
Immigration though, seems to be one issue on which people can be red pilled fairly easily.

Thurgood
Guest
Thurgood

Fuentes made all the same “optics,” mistakes in his early days. Groypers are just the Catholic alt-right. Productive paths for young men don’t include side-shows be they ideolgically racial or theological LARP.

Rwc1963
Guest
Rwc1963

Optics do matter in terms of recruitment and public perception. These things are independent of the MSM – who mostly try to find the craziest loose cannon of a movement they can find and use him as a poster child. This won’t stop the MSM from manufacturing a loon, but we should never help them by allowing the unhinged a place at the table. We keep them away. They are trouble. Though it is foolish to think we can turn the DR into a political movement that will be tolerated by the ruling class – it won’t. Once it gets… Read more »

Judge Smails
Guest

Off topic (or maybe not) an apparently serious attempt at peaceful separation. The Greater Idaho organization wants to peel off rural counties in Southern and Eastern Oregon and Northern California and merge them with Idaho. They are trying to get their proposal on the 2020 ballot.

http://greateridaho.org/

Member

This kind of thing might be one of the more peaceful ways to create a more perfect (dis)union. Greater Idaho can’t extend much past the Cascades or Mt. Shasta but that’s where Greater Utah begins, followed by the New Lone Star Republic, and so on. Get enough of this and you can start to re-form the US as it was meant to be – a loose federation of states locked together in a mutual support and defense pact. As the various elements of The Diversity flee the new states for the coasts you get the remaining white shitlibs packed ever… Read more »

Vegetius
Guest
Vegetius

I have noticed that people who got here from what I will here call the middle (that is somewhere other than conservatism, libertarianism or the ideological left) have much less trouble spotting the difference between a big tent and a freak show.

Exile
Member
Exile

Conservatism suffers for its lack of a coherent ideology. The routinely comedic “Conservative Case For X (degeneracy)” shows the worst aspect of this. When you can’t say what conservatism is, it’s hard to convince people what it isn’t.

We can articulate a set of practical hueristics as well as lofty principles – and we need to.

Ifrank
Guest

“We can articulate a set of practical heuristics…”

The US Constitution was a pretty good starting point, but then the judiciary took on the role of the legislature.

Ris_Eruwaedhiel
Guest
Ris_Eruwaedhiel

I would say ignore the Declaration of Independence with its “… that all men are created equal.” The long march of “equality” led us to gay marriage and women in combat. Thomas Jefferson would certainly not approve, but that’s what “equality” led to.

Alzaebo
Guest
Alzaebo

50 separate heuristics, or experiments on a common baseline.

As O’Meara notes, what Europe used to be, what he’d like to reconstitute, that old thing called “nations”.

G Lordon Giddy
Guest
G Lordon Giddy

There still is a normal America. We who poke around the dissident right are probably never gonna get the majority middle completely to our side on every subject. But we don’t need to get them over on every subject in order to have a livable society for us.. The left is making a mistake deplatforming and throwing hissy fits. A lot of the middle don’t know Nick Fuentes but they do know Trump and Trump if we like him or not for our side is getting everything and the kitchen sink thrown at him by the nut jobs on the… Read more »

vxxc💂🏻‍♂️😉 Toxic masculinity vector
Guest

Agree and add; Go to the gun club.
That’s at least as social as softball, and 100% mannerbund. Women don’t get to ruin it. I’m sure they’ve tried.
Some things even they can’t ruin.

For one thing even a gentleman’s range is authoritarian, it has to be for safety reasons.

Come to think of it in the military over decades I’ve never seen a female running a range. Or the Tower.
Or even on the line as safeties.
Funny that.

Mark Stoval
Guest
Mark Stoval

“You cannot make men good by law: and without good men you cannot have a good society.” — C. S. Lewis I am not sure what everyone here means by “on the right” or “right-wing” or “dissident right”. As one who has been to the far right all his life, or at least thought he was, I think dissidents will have to define what makes a good society — what one looks like. Then we sell that. My first thought is that democracy is total crap just as the ancients told us centuries ago. For a governance to work, I… Read more »

Ifrank
Guest

“Democracy is total crap”.

Democracy in a diverse culture is crap.

Yman
Guest
Yman

Last genuine political party were Dixiecrat against power hungry maniacs who claim great humanitarian ever live Republican party and conservative were always carpetbagger carpetbagger who pretending care about white people white people vote for him because other party were lunatic who want to destroy very existence of white people of course, carpetbagger doesn’t want fight back his lunatic cousins, why wouldn’t he? After all, they are part of family and family don’t destroy each other https://www.forbes.com/sites/davidnikel/2020/02/13/is-anything-truly-scandinavian-the-bizarre-sas-ad-controversy-explained recent SAS airlines commercials basically denied existence of Scandinavian obviously Airlines and Sweden ruling class decided to quit with incrementalism and instead just go… Read more »

Dionysus
Guest
Dionysus

It’s about giving the vast majority of normies in the middle plausible deniability when it comes to your ideas. They’ll go along with whoever seems and looks more reasonable, just in case things turn bad they can absolve themselves of you cleanly. Make the other side look crazy and they’ll have to side with you, because to side with the crazies would mean no absolution and taking responsibility for whatever may happen, which no normie wants to do.

Senator Brundlefly
Guest
Senator Brundlefly

I like this blog but if I’m honest its a pet peeve of mine when political people claim not to be ideologues. It seems to imply that ideology is a dirty word. You have a vision for what you want the world to be like? That implies a set of ideas and thus an ideology. You’re an ideologue. And that’s fine. Its the wishy washy people without a position who don’t think things through that are one of the major problems in democracies. I totally agree with you that uncompromising dogmatism leads to failure in the real world of politics.… Read more »

Marcel
Member

I believe the word you need is “idealist”.

ideologue = dogmatic idealist

And yes, a successful movement needs idealists, but when it’s nothing but idealists it effectively becomes controlled opposition, which is the point Zman makes again and again.

A radical pragmatist will have nothing but contempt for an idealist like Richard Spencer, who will inevitably make an ass of himself from time to time. I can understand that, but it doesn’t seem right to call Spencer a dilettante while most of us hide behind pseudonyms.

vxxc💂🏻‍♂️😉 Toxic masculinity vector
Guest
Alzaebo
Guest
Alzaebo

Hahaha!

Next: Virus Refugees Welcome!

slumlord
Guest
slumlord

Respectfully, there’s an error in your logic Z man. Instead of developing an internal logic that naturally results in a set of rules and standards, the reactionary simply responds to what he perceives to be his opponent. and, Conservatism is not a set of ideologies, but the rejection of ideology. What you’re saying is that “sound” conservationism does not have rules and standards (which are part and parcel of ideology) but the reason why it fails is because it is reactionary and doesn’t have rules and standards. Sorry, but you’re muddled in your thinking. The Right does need rules and… Read more »

JR Wirth
Guest
JR Wirth

“The dissident Right isn’t just anti-Left, a lot of it is of the Left itself.” – I see that in some ways. But not as the left is, but as it was per WW2, and it wasn’t all bad, I kind of like the fact that we have meat inspectors and while FDR in the end threw into vile war mongering, I kind of like the amount of resources he used to build massive dams and power lines and other infrastructure. That was very leftist at the time, but he was doing it for a people who still had a… Read more »

Alzaebo
Guest
Alzaebo

Proof you are correct:
The 1900 Democratic Platform

https://patriotpost.us/documents/469

Now I get the kvetching about Lincoln.
The Radical Republicans were revolutionaries, good old warmongering mercantile imperialists who saw a weak, rich target in the South.

This was imperialism before Bolshevism, before the kosher sandwich had matured into a long strategy of revolt communism to weaken the target, followed by vulture finance capitalism to grow and then grab its developed, devalued resources.

Venezuela was set up in this way;
China is now squarely in the bomb sights.

And everybody thought China would be taking “us” over- ha! What a masterful pitch.
Our turn for harvesting is only next.

Alzaebo
Guest
Alzaebo

Now I get the true power of unmoored, ‘virtual’, usurious fiat banking.

Such a flood of “money” can build infrastructure, like a railroad, a NASA or an Army, true;

But its real value is in buying unmeasureable influence- false promises based on projected fantasies, such as pensions, welfare, future income streams, trade deals, speculation, think tanks and marketing media, political graft and lobbies.

Intangible “moneys”, buying the intangibles to deliver the tangibles. Selling the sizzle to get the steak.

Can the DR use this?
We’re pretty intangible ourselves.
But! We’re trying to save not just the cows, but the whole darn farm.

Alzaebo
Guest
Alzaebo

(Yeah, I know, we didn’t start out 3000 years ado with the plundered wealth of Canaan and Egypt. Another bunch of canny raiders got a long head start.)

Mike_C
Guest
Mike_C

“China is now squarely in the bomb sights”

Maybe so, but the Chinese have two advantages compared with Western nations. Maybe three.
1. No IFF (identify friend or foe) problem. Chinamen will have no qualms about naming the manipulating foreigner.
2. The Chinese are at LEAST as xenophobic and ethnoculturally conceited as the Chosen.
3. Chinese have ZERO guilt about The Holocaust. So far as Chinese are concerned, if you managed to get six million of yours killed in job lots, then you are weaklings and you suck and you deserve to be annihilated. The Chinese are not a sentimental people.

slumlord
Guest
slumlord

Not all government interventionism is Leftism.

Christopher Chantrill
Guest
Christopher Chantrill

I urge you to read Curtis Yarvin’s “The Clear Pill” where he proposes a three-layer model: Gentry, Commoners, and Clients. On this model, Left vs. Right is a squabble within the Gentry, and the left wins because its game is to bribe the Clients with loot and plunder. The genius of Trump is to put himself at the head of the Commoners. And that is what a future Gentry Right must do. Lead the Commoners and promise them the right to live their lives as ordinary citizens protected from the ideological furies of the Gentry Left and the criminal violence… Read more »

vxxc💂🏻‍♂️😉 Toxic masculinity vector
Guest

The Gentry Right must lead the commons. Thank you. This is actually perfect.

Jim Smith
Guest
Jim Smith

“The collapse of the center” as it played out in Weimar Germany seems to rhyme with what we face today (including in Germany; Tom Luongo just wrote that, “The center has completely collapsed in Germany, as it has in so many countries in Europe”). Trump and Sanders are illustrative. But the Weimar collapse featured two socialist movements fighting for dominance (nationalist Nazis vs. internationalist communists); today we seem to be facing a choice between two welfare-statists, not a left-vs.-right struggle. Still…I’ll go with Trump.

Alzaebo
Guest
Alzaebo

Both Boris and Trump give us a few spoonfuls while delivering great steaming tankloads to the masters.

The point was there was no alternative.

We’re being herded into choosing Bojos and Trumps, what other choice do we have?

(The real goal we seek, however, is simple:
Stop attacking us. Leave us be!)

vxxc💂🏻‍♂️😉 Toxic masculinity vector
Guest

Well they won’t leave us be.
They can’t.
So?

vxxc💂🏻‍♂️😉 Toxic masculinity vector
Guest

Trump is the actual center.
However it will not hold after him.

Sleepy
Member

“Like the Left, to quote Kirk, ‘[the ideologues in dissident circles] see politics as a revolutionary instrument for transforming society.’” Then: “Politics is always about keeping the ends in mind and making the necessary compromises to further those ends. Politics is a means to an end. Ideologues always fall into the trap of thinking politics is an end in itself…” So which is it? Is the error of the ideologues to have “transforming society” as their end goal, or is it to treat politics as “an end in itself? For instance, the anti-Semite sees the manifest outsized role of Jews… Read more »

Flair1239
Guest
Flair1239

What is our group goal at this point. Because frankly I view us all on the same side at this point. Right now the Larping Nazi and the citizen concerned with immigration are on the same side. The needle has moved so far left that even a moderate critic of immigration is painted with the same brush as an ethno-nationalist. I really don’t see the benefit of drawing lines to my right. It is a case by case basis. Even Jared Taylor has said that all White people have to be welcome on the team. Even the undesireable ones. My… Read more »

Alzaebo
Guest
Alzaebo

I dunno, perhaps being a bit less philosophically LARPy and a bit more direct?

Pointing out that Trump, Boris’ Red Tories, and Sinn Fein in Ireland are all devoted to expanding Replacement immigration?

Quicksilver75
Guest
Quicksilver75

Great essay ZMAN. Persuasive with regard to coalition building

Rcocean
Guest
Rcocean

There is no need for someone on the Right to “Punch Right”. If I want to read someone “Punching Right-wingers” I can read the MSM and 1000 left-wing blogs. Given the limted number of Rightists and our de-platforming by the Left, maybe we should keep the focus on “Punching Left”. But that seems impossible.

PS. I tried to listen to the you-tube referenced and even at X2 speed, I was still getting bored. Why is it so many right-wingers talk so ssslllooowww?

Member

Sometimes Z-man’s arguments are really funny: So the “good” right is characterized by the absence of “ideology”, which is a characteristic of the left and of the “bad right”. Conclusion: we should stay away from any “ideology”! Let’s look at it. Hitler opposed and ridiculed “multiculturalism” and the Jews controlling it (in his Austro-Hungarian Monarchy). That, of course, was part of his “ideology”. We do the same in our countries, but that’s no ideology. Hitler wanted ethnostates for the “Aryans”, excluding non-Aryans. That’s an “ideology”, and a bad one, of course. We want ethnostates for “people of European descent”, which… Read more »

LineInTheSand
Guest
LineInTheSand

In defense of Spencer and the other flawed men who got in the ring:

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming…” TR

And Z is not just a critic, but a man cautiously climbing into the ring.

vxxc💂🏻‍♂️😉 Toxic masculinity vector
Guest

I can salute both climbing into the ring and caution. Z appears to be organizing. This is wise action. I differ on the parts that point towards inertia, or too little, too late. Or too small a number to matter. What about sane, organized types one may differ with, or find a bit rough? > I keep saying go to the gun club for a reason – that’s real. They’re real. Nothing is more radicalizing on the right than getting someone to buy their first gun and go to the gun club. Covers Mannerbund too – in spades.

sirlancelot
Guest
sirlancelot

The difference is the left does embrace their wack-jobs, but keeps them on a short leash. Every once in a while one of them goes berserk and tries to mow down a tent full of people or assault a young child. Why not make them the face of the looney-left ? Anyone uncomfortable with that kind of violence would be drawn to our side. The rest ? Well most Boomers will never reach this side as well as their millennial hellspawn. It’s time to concentrate on our grandchildren. They don’t care about Bad Optics . They just know what they… Read more »

vxxc💂🏻‍♂️😉 Toxic masculinity vector
Guest

They’re winners.
The left won.
They’re retarded, sickly spawn still win.

We’re talkers, grumblers.
Nothings- because we do not act.

That’s the difference.

Crud Bonemeal
Guest
Crud Bonemeal

Zman asks “If beating the Left requires embracing some differently insane ideology, what would be the point?” I respond: The point is winning, making history, saving your race and civilization and using power to shape the world in the way you want it. The current nightmare world is a product of too many Whites giving up on the above and leaving it to others. Wanting to save your people and achieve sovereignty for them already an ideology. But by itself, it’s somewhat of a vague and ill-defined ideology that needs some fleshing out. The person in question kinda knows what… Read more »

vxxc💂🏻‍♂️😉 Toxic masculinity vector
Guest

Whites would do better to grow some balls and act, overthinking and only thinking and talking allowed the weakest, most retarded groups in history to gain great power over us.
And they suck as masters, they can’t even master themselves.

Point 1; Bitchez out. No:Women.
Point 2: who’s car we taking?
Point 3: Victory.

Crud Bonemeal
Guest
Crud Bonemeal

It doesn’t have to be a complicated ideology, but Whites have to clearly understand what they want and want something different from this world, otherwise action is pointless and likely detrimental. Having balls doesn’t matter if you just get tricked into “trusting the plan”, following your enemy’s moral system and in engaging behavior that will be self defeating in the long term. You will end up right back where you started. MAGA Whites have no brains, so it their balls don’t matter. If they achieved political power they would not accomplish anything with it and they would soon lose it… Read more »

vxxc💂🏻‍♂️😉 Toxic masculinity vector
Guest

Trump has power, real American power and MAGA which should and other countries would be its own party has power through Trump. Real Power, and the much maligned whites of MAGA have it, Trump tapped into it. He’s got it, and he delivers for them. Brains vs Balls; sadly the really smart people are bifurcated from those willing to act, or more precisely our intellectuals have become cowards. True of the Left as well. This is a disease of a wealthy society too long on easy money and too long at peace. This does not mean all smart people are… Read more »

Stina
Guest
Stina

First step to positive identity is defining it.

You can define it for yourself and whoever likes your definition subscribes to your definition.

But the definition must exist. That’s how you avoid the reactionary thinking. That’s also how you start building policy ideas (another thing you brought up in another post).

VD made a start with his 16 points.

vxxc💂🏻‍♂️😉 Toxic masculinity vector
Guest

16 points- as a start.

God himself has only 10.
And God has power.

vxxc💂🏻‍♂️😉 Toxic masculinity vector
Guest

If I may dissent- 1. You are denouncing your competitors, this must be noted and weighed. 2. Never punch Right is too far, only punching Right gets old. 3. Politics is Power, what is your path to power? Win over the reasonable? So as to win elections? You denounce democracy at every chance. What changed your mind? 4. Reasonable people are useless in any other context than a stable polity, which we don’t have; this is why and actually how we “dissidents” exist. 5. There are many other Right Wing success stories besides the Nazis; Mannerheim, Franco, the record of… Read more »