Future Shock

Way back in the last century, futurism was a thing that serious people followed because America was still an optimistic country. The 1970’s promised to end that but the revival in the 1980’s brought it back in vogue. The microprocessor revolution was mostly responsible, but the subsequent end to the Cold War also helped. One of the chief gurus of futurism in the last three decades of the 20th century was a man named Alvin Toffler, who wrote a number of bestselling books.

Alvin Toffler has mostly been forgotten now, but he was a big deal from the 1970’s into the new century. His two big books were Future Shock and Third Wave, in which he described how the world was changing due to a number of forces, one of which was the technological revolution that was in its infancy at the time. Toffler wound up consulting with global leaders like Chinese premiere Zhao Ziyang, Michael Gorbachev, Newt Gingrich and various corporate leaders.

Toffler was credited with an idea that the next phase of civilization would be characterized by the pace of change. That is, the people would not only have to adapt to a changing society, but also adapt to a society that was under constant change at a rate that may exceed our ability to keep pace. Technology would advance so quickly that we would not have time to create new habits for the new rules. Instead, we would become corks on a raging river of change.

One of the keys to futurism is to never get too specific about the future, especially the future you expect to see. That way, no one can compare your prediction with what actually happened. Toffler was careful to not get too specific as to what life would be like in a world where the rules changed too quickly for people to adapt. Instead, he imagined a world where some people would be better at coping with constant change and others would struggle, thus creating a new status system.

To some degree this has proven to be true. You see this in the work place where the people rising to the top give off the aura of being infinitely flexible and adaptive, while the people lagging behind end up in accounting. Whether the “highly adaptive” are really adapting to change or striking the needed pose is debatable, but it is something that has become a thing in the corporate world. The highly adaptive are always wise to never ask why something is changing. They just accept it.

In society as a whole, the jury is out. The last decade has been a good test of this new reality and the results are mixed. Obama unleashed a race war in the last two years of his administration that no one saw coming. Then we had the drama of both party primaries in the 2016 elections. No one saw that coming. Trump winning the nomination and then the presidency was a total shock. Then it was four years of chaos and the insane response to the Covid pandemic.

Trump seems like a lifetime ago, yet it has only been a little over a year since he was deposed and replaced with Joe Biden. Five years ago, no sane person thought Joe Biden would ever be president. No one saw the economic chaos that is now starting to define our lives either. We are just scratching the surface on the economic front, as there are a lot of chickens coming home to roost. We are seeing things that not so long ago were declared impossible by the smart set.

There are two conclusions that you can draw from the last decade. One is the public has been remarkably resilient. The middle-class has taken one body blow after another, but has staggered on, not doing much to update its view of society or the people who run the country. This fall, they will dutifully vote for the B-team, who promise to do more of the same, just with better looking performers. The Middle American Radicals remain safely in their pods, munching on their bugs.

The other conclusion is we cannot predict what is coming next. Most people wisely assumed that tomorrow will look like today, with more of the stuff that is popular and less of the stuff that is not so popular. Now, the wise people have to assume that whatever comes next is not being discussed today. If you want to know the future, find a fringe weirdo making crazy claims. Every notable thing that has happened over the last decade was considered aluminum foil hat stuff.

This may be why the Middle American Radicals have been so docile. People need to time to get angry at their rulers and they need something onto which to focus their attention as the main issue. By the time the rulers were willing to tackle inflation in the 1970’s, the people had suffered with it for years. They had time to digest it, understand it and make specific demands about the economy. Reagan won in 1980 largely due to his ability to repeat those demands.

In this age, no one has time to focus on anything very long. We just spent two years having our rights trampled with Covid and it is now on its way to being a conspiracy theory because the new issue is Ukraine. The rage heads on the Left are still struggling to figure out why no one cares about the study of extremism, but that issue was replaced with Covid, which is now being replaced with Putin. Things change so quickly that even the rage heads have no time to get angry.

Of course, the people behind the constant change are living the life of momentary advantage, where they profit from every turn of the wheel. The great transfer of wealth from the middle-class to the over-class is one result. The consolidation of power into the hands of a narrowing elite is another. The new world of constant change is one where the elite can front-run what comes next because they are driving it. Everyone else is left to guess, which means a life of perpetual chaos.

The question no one asks is whether this is sustainable. The consolidation of power may not be by design, but a necessity. At least it is an evolutionary reaction to the accelerating pace of change and uncertainty. Logically, what comes next is some sort of administrative coup where Biden is replaced by the managerial elite. Will that cause a revolt or will it be welcomed? Probably the latter, given what is happening, but maybe that is the point at which the dam breaks.

That is the thing about the world of constant change. No one has time to plan as the rules keep changing. This is especially true of that narrowing ruling elite. They need to keep flipping the pages faster in order to maintain their status, so they can do no long-term planning. Rule by expediency has a history and it is not a promising one, which means it does not have a promising future. The disaster in Ukraine is one example of living in the moment can end in disaster.

What the futurist always get right is that the present modes are running their course and new modes are on the horizon. What they get wrong is that those new modes also come with an expiry date. We may be seeing that with the world Toffler imagined back in the last century. The accelerating pace of change is reaching an end, because mankind can only tolerate so much change. The question is whether it ends in fire or ice, which the poet said would both suffice.


If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link. If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


The Test Of Reality

Last week, the current president of Ukraine thanked Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg for his role in helping him win the propaganda war. Facebook lifted its ban on praising the various neo-Nazi militias in Ukraine. Then it announced it would allow calls for violence against individual Russians. In the world of infinitely malleable ethics, this is what Silicon Valley now calls a principled stand. Ukraine supporters are proud of their work on social media wining the meme war with Russia.

In the real world, the Russian army is slowly turning Ukraine into the world’s largest mound of rubble. In the Donbass, they have the Ukrainian army and the tens of thousands of militia members surrounded. It is not easy to get reliable information about what is happening on the ground, but reliable estimates say fifty thousand pro-Ukrainian fighters are now trapped in the Donbass “cauldron.” Barring a peace deal, they will be vaporized over the next couple of weeks.

In the south, the Russian army has created a corridor to the Crimea. This was a primary objective of the invasion. Mariupol, a city in southeastern Ukraine, lies along the estuary of the Kalmius and Kalchik rivers near the Sea of Azov. This city has been surrounded and cutoff by the Russian army. The Ukrainian army based there has been given the chance to surrender, but the irregulars will be given no quarter. It is a preview of what will happen in the Donbass over the next month.

The point here is that despite losing the social media war, the Russians are winning the actual war in Ukraine. It has been slow going as the Russians do not wage television friendly wars, so no cool video. Ukraine was slowly being turned into a fortified outpost by Washington, so the Ukrainian army is well trained and supplied. Digging them out of those fortification will not be easy, but it is inevitable. The Russians will turn Ukraine into rubble if that is what it takes to achieve their objective.

What this war has revealed is a clash of realties. On the Washington side, reality is played out on TV chat shows, office politics and the internet. They really think winning the public relations campaign matters. In the reality in which Western leaders live, words count for everything. Facts are just tools to be used to decorate a clever argument or a novel public relations campaign. From the perspective of the West, the war has been a disaster for Russia.

On the other side, the Russians operate in a different reality. They are focused on securing their border, which means neutralizing Ukraine. They have prepared for the economic consequences. They have prepared their people, who seem to be overwhelming supportive of the effort. Westerners have described Putin as having a medieval mindset, which may be true, but he is dealing with a people and a reality that still thinks the old way about the world.

Ukraine is now caught between two realities. The one reality is what Samuel Huntington labeled the Orthodox civilization. This is Eurasia. On the other side is what he called the Western civilization. According to Huntington, the future will be shaped by the clash of the civilizations he outlined in his book, The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order. What we are seeing in Ukraine is a collision between these great tectonic plates that define conflicting realities.

Of course, the quarter century crusade against Islam by the Global American Empire was a similar clash of civilizations. Huntington called that area the Islamic civilization for obvious reasons. It is what is commonly referred to as MENA, which stands for Middle East and North Africa. America tried to impose its reality on the Islamic world and the result was chaos. Every country in the region, except Israel and Iran, is in worse shape now than when the crusade was launched.

In many respects, what we are witnessing is the test of two competing post-Cold War theories of the future. One is the Huntington theory and the other is the Francis Fukuyama theory, laid out in his book The End of History and the Last Man. In it he argued that mankind had reached the end-point of mankind’s ideological evolution and the triumph of Western liberal democracy. There was nothing left to discuss, as liberal democracy was the winner of the ideological contest.

By any measure, Fukuyama’s theory is proving to be all wrong, while Huntington’s theory is looking prophetic. We are now in the midst of a second great civilizational conflict where the reality of the West is crashing onto the reality of another civilization, in this case Eurasia. The reality of the West, social media campaigns and glib responses at press conferences, is proving no match for artillery and armor, at least not in the part of the world controlled by the Orthodox civilization.

On the horizon is the certain collision between what Huntington called the Sinic civilization (China) and the West. East Asia is a bit more complicated as there are a many old rivalries in that region. Huntington diced the region into various subgroups like Buddhists, Hindus and the Japanese. Even so, China will make a play to recover what she considers to be her lost province, Taiwan. As we see in Ukraine, this will be a clash between the reality of the West and the reality of China.

Lost in all of this is whether the reality of the Global American Empire can survive these clashes with alternative realities. Prudence said that the empire should respect the perspective of Russian with regards to these areas along her border. Prudence said that the Muslim world should be left to sort itself. Western liberal democracy was incompatible with Islamic culture. Despite all of this, Washington continues to operate in its own reality where words can conquer culture.

What we may be seeing is not only the clash of civilizations, but the great test of the underlying sense of reality that animates Western elites. Can they survive in a world in which they need to impose their reality on the rest of the world, but the rest of the world will not accept it? Either the West comes to terms with the fact that the rest of the world will continue to operate by its own logic or it will destroy itself in civilizational wars to impose its reality on the reality of alien civilizations.


If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link. If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


The Bug Men

Imagine one day you wake up to see that some people, but not all, just the beautiful people, are now wearing flowerpots on their heads. You first see it on the television while making coffee. Then you see people with the flowerpot things while on your commute into the office. They are not wearing actual flowerpots, but hats that look like a pot holding a shrubbery. Not only are they wearing these ridiculous hats, but they are also acting like it is perfectly normal.

This is the world most Americans woke up to last week when news broke that the Russian army had crossed into Ukraine. Suddenly, as if they had received orders from the hive queen, all of the beautiful people were Ukrainian nationalists. They were all saying “keev” as if they had developed some new mental disease. They were sporting Ukrainian flag lapel pins. At the Biden state of the union show they were dressed in the colors of the Ukrainian flag.

This is not just a partisan marketing campaign either. The mouth breathers of conservatism are right there with their masters on the Left waving the yellow and blue of their new homeland. The same people who were wearing the angry face about being called a Putin shill a few years ago are now calling anyone skeptical of this new fad a tool of the evil Vladimir Putin. The same people who tell us nations no longer matter now sound like white nationalists in their support of Ukraine.

It is easy to dismiss this as the sort of superficial sincerity that we have come to expect from the beautiful people. A big part of the gulf between the Cloud People and the Dirt People is the Cloud People lack normal human emotions. Instead, it is these programmed responses to programmed questions. You get more authenticity from an ATM machine than from Jen Psaki. While this Ukraine fetish is part of the programming, it reveals something else about them.

These are people who lack all meaning in life. The reason they all swarmed to the Ukraine stuff is that it allowed them to experience what they imagine is normal human emotion and community spirit. Their conjured image of the brave Ukrainians taking up arms against the aggressor reflects their own lack of purpose. Many Americans have been reduced to the bug-man existence of consuming product but the Cloud People are the pinnacle of the bug-man lifestyle.

This is why they are so fond of using analogies drawn from comic book movies and children’s books. You will notice that the people comparing Putin to Lord Voldemort from the Harry Potter movies are childless. They did not pick up the reference from watching the shows with their kids. They are the primary consumers of this material. This fantasy material has become folklore for people who lack the cultural structure that provides an adult frame of reference to understand the world.

Dissidents are fond of pointing out how the modern age consumes the normal social capital, converting it into cash to fuel the consumer economy. This process has slowly obliterated the natural community of America. The result is endless miles of generic housing developments named after whatever it is that was destroyed in order to build these crimes against nature. We are slowly being converted into pod people who experience the world via the internet.

The thing is this process is complete among the Cloud people. They are cutoff from the rest of us, living in a fantasy world that operates by its own rules. It is why they think it makes sense to lecture working class people about white privilege while Mexican drug gangs flood working class neighborhoods with narcotics. It is why Joe Biden’s programmers think Ukraine is more important than food prices. In their world, what matters is what gives them meaning.

That is the thing though. Their lives have no meaning because they are living the fully atomized and transactional life. These are people who will slit each other’s throat for a better spot on a cable channel. They have no loyalty, no code, no sense of decency because they are just particles in a system that exists for its own purposes. It is why the image of Ukrainians taking up arms is so enthralling to them. Our bug-man rulers long for even the hint of such a life.

This is why they hate the Dirt People so much. Despite it all, normal people still try to form and maintain community. They may not be able to articulate it, but they sense that having beers with a neighbor as they watch the kids play in the backyard matters more than anything they consume on-line. The Cloud People hate the Dirt People because for the Dirt People, Harry Potter will always be entertainment for their kids, not a guidebook for understanding the world.

Also note the solipsism in all of the Ukraine love. The people wearing the colors of the Ukrainian flag have only the most superficial understanding of the people and history of the region. It is why they embraced the most superficial and meaningless part of Ukrainian identity, the flag. It is a cheap decoration that lets them feel like they are a part of something. They are standing with Ukraine with the same sincerity they do everything else in their hollow and pointless lives.

You also note that they frame the Ukraine issue as brave innocents defending themselves from the dark forces. This comes from people who deliberately lock themselves inside razor wire fences guarded by armed troops. Their emotional isolation from normal human experience now manifests as a physical isolation from the people they supposedly rule. For the Cloud People, Ukraine is a metaphor for how they see themselves in relation to the Dirt People.

The Devil finds work for idle hands and that is what we see with our rulers. Much of what ails the West these days is the result of a ruling class without much purpose as a ruling class and without much meaning as people. The crisis in Ukraine is the fault of people who use children’s books to provide meaning to their lives. We not only have an excess of elites, but we also have a shortage of reasons for them to exist. It is why they are now decorated with Ukrainian flags. They have nothing else.


If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link. If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


AFPAC III

Note: The normal Taki post is up. This week it is not tied into the Monday post here, but rather to a special post over at American Greatness. I read and reviewed Paul Gottfried’s latest book, Antifascism: The Course of a Crusade. If you can drop a positive comment over there, that would be good. Fair warning, the comment section there is a full SD below what you get here. I also have some notes about my trip here.


Conferences are an American past time. We have conferences for serious things like business issues and community topics. We also have conferences for less serious issues like politics, social issues, academics, books and hobbies. The conference industry is big business in America. There are people who make their living organizing the details of conferences. Every decent sized venue has people dedicated to managing and directing conferences.

You can rank these things by their production values. The more important the event the better the production values. The well supported operations can hire good people and a first-class facility for the conference. At the other end, the conference is put on by volunteers who have a passion for the topic. They rent a ballroom at one of the hotels near the airport and hope to get enough attendees to cover the cost. In the end it is just people with the same hobby in a room having hotel food.

AFPAC III was near the top-end of the conference spectrum. It was not at the level of CPAC or global corporate events, but it was just below. There was well over one thousand people in attendance. The facility could hold a few hundred more, but beyond that this event will be moving into the big-boy size facilities. To give some perspective, if you were in the back of the room, you needed the giant video screens to follow the speeches as you could not see the speaker.

That is the other thing you see at the higher end of these things. There was a stage with the podium, in the middle and two massive video screens. The room is setup with a first-rate sound system that lets the people in the back hear the speech, without the people in the front going deaf. The video screens had the graphics and video shorts you see at these things to keep people excited between speeches. Again, it was not at the CPAC level, but they can feel the breath of AFPAC on their neck.

Therein the lies the second observation about AFPAC that is important. There is something happening here. CPAC gets all the beautiful people in their finest to tell one another everything if going to be okay. AFPAC draws the Dirt People in their finest, who know everything is not going to be okay. CPAC only lacks the smell of fresh cut flowers to feel like a well attended funeral for a rich man. AFPAC has the smell of revolution in the air and the energy that comes with it.

The energy is the third thing worth noting. On a personal note, I have been to a lot of conferences for all sorts of things. I have never felt like I was in the middle of an electrical storm until AFPAC. Most of that is due to the youth of the audience, but even the geezers were ready to spit on their hands and hoist the black flag. Rock concerts are not this fired up. If you are showing a bit of gray in the beard and want to feel good about the future, attend AFPAC IV.

The show itself was much better than you normally get at these things. The speakers know they are standing in front of a young crowd hungry for red meat. A Catholic priest opened the show with a prayer, then Nick gave the crowd a short talk, which was the signal to strap in and enjoy the ride. Marjorie Taylor Green spoke first. She is a fountain of political bumper sticker quotes. That is politics today. Then it was a run of famous live streamers with a few other politicians mixed in.

The speaker list and its arrangement are where you see the growing pains for AFPAC as it was a bit too much red meat. Pols are always going to be a fountain of applause lines as that is their business. Live streamers are not the sort of people used to organizing a speech around a topic or set of themes. As a result, they fall back on the zingers and conversational style they do on their show. The effect is something like a motivational seminar rather than a political conference.

In future events, they would be wise to bound this with two professional speakers who know how to deliver a speech that people remember the next day. The big boys will have a speaker open with a speech that gets the audience thinking, then a series of speakers to pump up the crowd. The next to last speaker is the closed parenthesis to the first speaker. The star, in this case Nick Fuentes, comes out to close the show with a speech that binds the energy with the message.

The same can be said for the security, which was done by lots of young men volunteering for the job. Like the speeches, they had tons of energy, but not the structure people come to expect at an event this size. They got the job done by being wildly overzealous, not terribly efficient. In the future, a professional team to manage the young men would be wise. It is not that they did not get the job done. It is that they missed a chance to impress with it.

The final criticism is that it went too late. The event started with a cocktail hour where the special guests mingled with about two hundred attendees. Inevitably, these go on too long, which was the case here. Then it took too long to get a thousand people seated, so the first speech started at 8:00 PM. Of course, in a room pulsing with energy, the speeches went on longer than scheduled. By the time Fuentes closed the show it was pushing 1:00 AM and the crowd was running low on energy.

Again, this is the bucket of great problems to have if you are the organizers. It is easy to remedy going forward and offers something new in the future. They should probably have a VIP dinner on Friday night for three hundred people. They meet the guests and get a dinner speech from Nick. The next day is a full day event with breaks to let people rest up, socialize and all that stuff. It should build up to the evening portion that gets everyone pumped up to conquer the world.

Of course, that is only possible if the numbers grow and that does not seem like a problem, given what has happened thus far. AFPAC I was a small affair held in the third-rate motel in Northern Virginia. Maybe 150 people were in attendance. To go from that to ten times the crowd at a major facility is special. That is the right word for what is happening with this youth movement. It is not without some challenges and it will hit some bumps along the way, but something special is happening.

That is the question that I had as I packed up for home. I chatted with many young people and I have some knowledge of the people organizing it. I have followed Nick’s career since I met him four years ago. Right now, this is just a thing that is happening, but no one can define. That has its benefits, but it comes with risk. At some point soon it has to be more than just a lot of young guys looking for something that welcomes them as young men in a world hostile to young men.

In the near future, this thing will need a superstructure of ideas to hold it together once the blows start coming from the establishment. The blows will not be name calling from the simpleton army of the SPLC. One day soon, senior Republicans will be told by their handlers to denounce this movement and its leaders. It has to have the strength to withstand that sort of assault and answer back. That comes from having a superstructure of ideas and objectives.

That has always been the problem with populist politics in America. It has the numbers and the energy, but it always lacks a positive message. People will sacrifice for only so long in opposition. Eventually, they cut deals in their mind to accommodate that which they oppose in order to get on with their life. On the other hand, people will sacrifice their lives for a dream, a dream for their children. Populism tends to live in mere opposition, so it tends to fade.

That is the unique opportunity of AFPAC and the movement it represents. Nick Fuentes comes in for a lot of criticism, but he is smart and committed. He is not the same man he was when I met him. He possesses a self-awareness you rarely see in anyone that gets famous in politics. It is extra-rare in outsider politics. Being the big fish in the small pond tends to make people feel like gods. They wake up every morning wondering who has been talking about them since they went to bed.

Fuentes, in contrast, is thinking much bigger than being the big fish in a small pond and he knows he is a big fish in a small pond. He also knows he will not be allowed in the big pond, so he is committed to building a bigger pond. If Pat Buchanan and the paleos had possessed this degree of self-awareness and realism, we might not be in the situation where we have to hope the youth will solve the problems left to them by their parents and grandparents.

A sign that these guys have the right stuff to build a genuine opposition is something Fuentes did in his speech. He gave a moving tribute to Jared Taylor that was heartfelt and sincere. Fuentes is loyal and you could see that in his tribute to Taylor. This is a young man with a code. He sticks by those who stick by him. That is not always good in politics, but that is the problem with our politics. No one in it has code. We are ruled by sociopaths, not men with a code. We need more men with code.


If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link. If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


Managerial Menticide

Note: The Monday Taki post is up. The subject of it and today’s post is the new way to look at the system ruling over us. Of course, Sunday Thoughts is up behind the green door for those needing audio stimulation. Much of it is about the situation in Europe and the evolving Canadian dictatorship.


One of the problems with the Opposite Rule of Liberalism is that it relies on the old Left-Right dichotomy of American politics. This framing persists despite the fact that it is a vestige of a bygone era that no longer works today. The political divide is now between those who adhere to the basket of ideas called Western liberalism and those who defend the post-Marxist managerial state. The latter group is made up almost entirely of members of the ruling class.

In other words, we now live in a world divided by those in the system of control that hovers over the West and those who live under it. The Dirt People versus Cloud People framing is a much more honest, if a bit sarcastic, framework for the world. The ruling system is like a miasma that hangs over society, infecting the minds of the people and their relations with one another. We can see the elites at the top, just barely, but the system they control is all around us.

A big part of what ails society is this sense that things are not as they seem, but it is hard to get a read on why. That noxious miasma that lingers in every aspect of society often leads people to doubt their own senses. Their experience tells them things about the world and people in it, but everywhere they look they are getting messages telling them that what they think they see is not true. Instead, they are to believe something that is often the opposite of what they experience.

This is where the Opposite Rule continues to work. Those who are aware of the contradictions of daily existence can apply the rule to the information stream that comes from the system, filling the area around them. Whatever is in the air at the moment, start from some version of the opposite, and the truth will be near. The Opposite Rule of Liberalism is best restated as the Opposite Rule of Managerialism. This organic, self-aware system that rules over us is the opposite of truth.

A useful example comes from the daily barrage of “information” from the system about the crisis in Ukraine. Here is a story from the New York Times headlined, “Russia has been laying groundwork online for a ‘false flag’ operation, misinformation researchers say.” Note that this story is not behind the usual paywall, as they want wide circulation of it. Note also that the writer is one of the infants they employ to copy and paste material into “news reports.”

This news report starts with a news report from a European based group called European Expert Association, which is described as “a research group that focuses on security in Ukraine.” When you take a look at who these people are, it becomes obvious that they are Ukrainian activists. These are not neutral observers searching for the truth about the crisis. More important, when you look at their resumes you see all the familiar NGO’s that are pushing for war with Russia.

Of course, this is the New York Times, the first draft of history and the leader in the American news media. They do not just take this at face value. They hand it to a group called the Global Disinformation Index, a nonprofit “research” group. These are the go-to guys for the Times reports on misinformation and disinformation. To the shock of no one in the Times offices, the researchers at Global Disinformation Index confirmed everything said the European Expert Association.

The reason the Times was not surprised by what they heard back from the Global Disinformation Index is the person running it is Anne Applebaum. She is a notorious warmonger and neoconservative. Here she is advocating for the liquidation of the Afghanis and the Syrians as a “solution” to those problems. Applebaum is a big believer in what Stalin supposedly said about people causing problems for the regime. No man, no problem. Applebaum just scales it up.

Her partner in this enterprise is a Ukrainian activist named Peter Pomerantsev, who is probably on the payroll of a Western intelligence service. His biography does not pass the laugh test. His role in life has been to seed Western media with anti-Russian information dressed up as Ukrainian nationalism. The rest of the staff of the Global Disinformation Index all have an axe to grind with some enemy of the neocons, past, present or in the future.

The point of this walk through the swamps behind the ministry of disinformation is to illustrate how the new rule works. If a media outlet is claiming to root out disinformation, you can be sure they are not doing that. Instead, start with the assumption that they are waging a disinformation campaign. That is what you see in the New York Times story and any story containing the words “Global Disinformation Index.” Then you can begin to figure out what is really going on with the story.

Of course, the entirely new obsession with misinformation and disinformation by government and mass media is a big lie. Since forever, people have known that governments lie all the time. They have known that the media is partisan, a form of activism more often than not. Yet suddenly we are being told that the media and the government are now declaring war in false information. Since they are the only possible source of disinformation, this means war on themselves.

The big lie, for those unfamiliar, is a lie so colossal that no one would believe that someone could have the impudence to distort the truth so infamously. This is now the default tactic of the managerial state. They tell us that Eskimo truckers protesting vaccine rules are white supremacists. Then they bring in a “hate expert” to claim that freedom is a form of violence. These outlandish whoppers are then signed off on by new experts who sagely tell us the moon is made of cheese.

Unlike normal propaganda techniques, this new tactic is not to further a cause, although it can be used that way as we see with Ukraine. The neocons are simply taking advantage of a defense mechanism that has evolved since the Cold War. By flooding the zone with outlandish nonsense, the system prevents cogent analysis of what it is doing or contradicting it in any way. It is a form of menticide to paralyze the people by suspending them in a solution of false narratives.

This is the utility of the Opposite Rule. It helps clarify the new relationship between the leviathan and the people. Instead of viewing society as a hierarchical structure that is responsive to the will of the people, you see that it is an adversarial relationship between a ruling organism and the people. This ruling organism is the vast administrative state made up of government, corporations, the academy, non-profits and the mass media. It is a fully integrated organism.

The endless waves of information, mostly false information, is its primary defense mechanism against what it sees as a threat. That threat is the people over whom it hovers like a noxious cloud. The point of the false information is to keep the people in a fog of confusion about who really rules over them. You cannot rebel against that which you are not even sure exists. Menticide is the primary defense mechanism of this system of social control we call managerialism.


If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link. If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


Performative Democracy

One of the striking things about the Canadian trucker protest is that we have been able to get a good look at Justin Trudeau. To this point no one outside of Canada has had a reason to care about him. Sure, he is a ridiculous person who likes wearing funny outfits in public, but that is democracy. Until now few people outside of the great white north have grasped the depth of this man’s ridiculousness. The whole world now sees that Canada is ruled by a feckless airhead.

In fairness, Canadians can point out that while Trudeau is a ridiculous person, he is not wearing diapers and unsure of his own name. In the theater of the absurd that is western liberal democracy, Joe Biden has to be the headliner. The Global American Empire has a dementia patient in charge. Not only that, when Joe Biden was at his peak fifty years ago, he was considered one of the dumbest men in Washington, so he is a dunce with dementia now.

Most people tend to write off these examples as exceptions. After all, the system does produce some serious people. At least that is the hope. What keeps people voting is the belief that someone will come along who will actually do the people’s bidding and be reasonably good at it. In the daily life of most people, there are plenty of capable people doing important work. In a nation of three hundred million, we should be able to find enough competent people to fill these offices.

The trouble is the system is stuffed with people who are probably worse than Justin Trudeau or Joe Biden. Is Mitch McConnell or Nancy Pelosi an upgrade over Joe Biden in terms of cognitive ability? Is Justin Trudeau more ridiculous in his role than Maxine Waters or Ocasio-Cortez. Allegedly the most important legislative body on earth has a bag lady and ditzy barmaid. You can probably find one hundred members of Congress who are more ridiculous than Justin Trudeau.

It is not just at the top of the system either. Again, the habit is to think of the people as exceptions rather than the rule. The rest of the system has decent people who can be elevated to the national stage if people just vote harder. Then again, one of those people is Marjorie Taylor Greene. She is supposed to be the antidote to someone like Ocasio-Cortez, but in reality, she is just another flavor of the same thing. Silly people are the one thing that both parties embrace.

When you look down at the entry point of politics, what you see is the system seems to select for these people. Here is a young women with a bright future. She is currently in the Nebraska senate. Her Twitter profile reads, “State Senator in Omaha’s District 8. Vice Chair of Urban Affairs. Bi queen. Abolish ICE. She/her.” It is not hard to see her getting elevated to Congress at some point and then becoming a national figure as the first pronoun American in Congress.

Her web site says she is an “entrepreneur and small business owner” but that is a gross exaggeration. When you dig into her business career you learn she owned a boutique for a short time and then founded “Safe Space Nebraska, a nonprofit organization that protects bar patrons from harassment.” That is not the work of an “entrepreneur and small business owner”. That is the work of a public nuisance. She is why in a better age the scold’s bridle was popular.

Gormless dingbats like Megan Hunt are not an exception. She is the rule in modern politics, up and down the system. In fact, when you look down the ranks what you see is that demented old men like Biden and feckless airheads like Trudeau really are the best the system can produce. When you look at the actuarial tables, it is clear that a guy like Trudeau will be remembered as Canada’s Pericles in a few years. Joe Biden will be the Zoomer generation’s Patrick Henry.

The Founders, of course, were opposed to democracy because they assumed the people would be manipulated by craven opportunists. Ambitious men with little regard for the common good would play on the passions of the people. This would inevitably lead to factionalism. The people would care more about the narrow pursuit of their faction’s interests rather than the public good. Democracy becomes mob rule, where different mobs take turns ruling over the other mobs.

We are certainly seeing that in modern America, but what the Founders never imagined is that the craven opportunists would be stupid and ridiculous. Justin Trudeau is a simpleton, but he also possesses a rare set of social skills that has allowed him to rise to the top of his government. Joe Biden was a stupid crook, but somehow managed to stay in the Senate for generations. Even in his current condition, he was able to manipulate the system to win the White House.

What the results are telling us is that mass democracy in large technological societies selects for moronic sociopaths. The most likely reason for this is that democracy quickly becomes pointless in a large technological society. It is just window dressing for the managerial elite that operates the vast administrative state. The system can tolerate Joe Biden, because the president is a ceremonial position. In fact, all of the elected offices are ceremonial, just part of the performative democracy.

Circling back to where this started, the trucker rebellion in Canada is probably the first real test of this system. Thirty years ago, Justin Trudeau would not be tolerated because the Cold War required serious men in these positions. Three decades of easy times has allowed the system to evolve into the absurdity we now see. Reality, however, is coming back from holiday. This will be the first real test of performative democracy and the actors and actresses that populate it.


If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link. If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


Managerial Musings

Man people have noted the similarities, as far as practical application, between 20th century fascism and modern managerialism. The starting place for the comparison is the marriage of corporate power and state power. Instead of harnessing the two in the name of socialism and nationalism, the two sides exist within the managerial state in the furtherance of technological and financial capitalism. The system is also decorated with the language of Western liberalism.

The important difference, of course, is that fascism was in response to the chaos of communist terror and liberal collapse. Managerialism, in contrast, is an American phenomenon that evolved in response to the limits of the political structure in the context of expansion and industrialization. The Constitution was written for a pre-industrial people. After the Civil War it was modified several times, but that just turned the fine balance into a set of irreconcilable contradictions.

What managerialism attempts to do in practice is apply extra-governmental solutions to problems either created by government or beyond the limits of government. The expert class in the other institutions create solutions to these problems. Often these solutions create new problems, which require other experts to solve. Of course, these solutions always require the permanent expansion of institutional power. Managerialism is a self-licking ice cream cone.

The most prominent example of this is the military-industrial complex, which is the clearest example of managerialism. The state is tasked with defense of society, which is why nations have militaries. These are the people trained specifically for the task of war and national defense. During the Second World War, the military relied heavily on private industry and this marriage has endured ever since. Together they seek new enemies to justify new expansion of the system.

During the Cold War, the politicians could always be relied upon to find an enemy for the military-industrial complex to use as a rallying point. When relations with the Soviets were civil, then it was some proxy war in the third world. For forty years there was always a reason to expand the military-industrial complex. Then the Cold War ended and the system needed new villains. A quarter century crusade against Islam has just wrapped up and the hunt for a new villain is underway.

Domestically, this public-private partnership is not so clean. Instead, the relationship is accidental and indirect. For example, the bum problem that has plagued every city in America since the 1980’s was not deliberate. The people who got the asylum system shut down did so for narrow reasons. The bum problem was totally unexpected, because they assumed the state would find a new solution. Instead, “homelessness” became a lucrative private enterprise with no solution.

We are about to see something similar with the new soft-on-crime policies promoted by left-wing politicians. Their motivations are ideological, not practical, but the practical consequences are creating a serious problem. American cities are being overrun by petty crimes like shoplifting and smash and grabs. Since these crimes are not prosecuted, the criminals have become brazen. These scenes are becoming a feature of social media and the local news.

Since this problem has been created by the state, there can be no state solution, so it is left to the private side to fashion a cure. Retailers are now calling on the internet retailers to crack down on the traffic in stolen goods. The thieves apparently put their goods on sites like eBay and Amazon. Here we have the public-private partnership coming up with a solution they created. The state actors get their ideological points and the private actors get to expand their control.

The public-private tyranny Americans are now experiencing is reflected in the mainstream political order. The modern Left, despite its pretensions, exists to create social problems for the managerial elite to solve. Conservatives, on the other hand, are the cheer squad for the private actors tasked with finding solutions. Note that both sides have abandoned economics and focus only on creating cultural mayhem (Left) and proffering technological solutions (Right).

This weird political dynamic is most obvious in libertarianism. In the middle of the last century, libertarians were indifferent to social issues. Their singular focus was on economics, specifically market economics. Today, libertarians like Nick Gillespie spend their days promoting free weed and thinking about what it would be like to wear something pretty under the leather jacket. What started out as an economic movement is now a carnival of weirdos promoting the managerial state.

This is the aspect of managerialism that has gone unnoticed. The whole point of rule by expert is to strip away politics in order to efficiently address the practical problems of human society. Just as libertarianism and conservatism have abandoned practical issues in favor of bizarre social fads, the managerial state is no longer interested in filling potholes and painting classroom walls. Instead, it obsesses over imaginary demons of its own creation.

This shift from practical issues to abstract issues coincides with a growing incompetence and inefficiency in the system. This is where you see a comparison between both fascism and communism. Both of those systems started with great efficiency and energy, but that quickly dissipated. Fascism, of course, was smashed in the war, but communism descended in a tragic comedy of bureaucratic bungling and political corruption, as we see with managerialism.

Just as historical comparisons have narrow limits, ideological comparisons fall apart when taken too far. Managerialism is not fascism and it is not communism, even though it shares practical attributes with both. Like both, however, it evolved for a time and place, one that no longer exists. Much of the chaos we see today is due to a frantic search for something to replace communism as the necessary foil. The system is destroying itself in the hunt for a reason to exist.

What all of this suggests is that we not only need a new narrative of the last century, but a new understanding of managerialism. We are still working with the concepts produced by Burnham and then the paleoconservatives. These are concepts produced when communism was still a real thing and managerialism was seen as the energetic response to it. Instead, managerialism needs to be viewed as one manifestation of something that also produced fascism and communism.


If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link. If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


After Left And Right

Categories are useful, which is why humans have been using labels for people and things since the dawn of time. Using generalizations for people, events and things is a handy way of communicating important things efficiently. The political terms Left and Right have been with us since the 18th century for that reason. They are broadly useful in describing people and ideas. In the particular they are often confusing, but when it comes to the big categories, they work.

In 18th and 19th century Europe, the Right was those on the side of the old aristocratic order, while the Left represented some form of liberal alternative. The Right defended the rights of the crown against the demands of the crowd. The Left advocated the rights of the people against the traditions of the crown. The Left was coming at politics from an empirical perspective. They talked about rational government. The Right were traditionalist, often rooting their position in religion.

In the 19th and 20th century, especially in America, the terms Right and Left were redefined around economic concepts. The Left were socialists, embracing Marxist arguments, to one degree or another, about economics and history. The Right was the defender of markets and free enterprise. Those old class concepts, king and peasant, inevitably were incorporated. The Left was on the side of the working people, the new peasants, while the Right was on the side of business.

The limits of this new economically based politics are obvious when looking at the early 20th century, particularly the interwar years. Fascism is considered to be right-wing, even though all of them embraced socialism. They also championed the workers in their organizing and rhetoric. Communism was much more popular with the upper classes than the working classes. Look at 20th century communism and what you see is academics and the scions of the upper classes.

Lost in all of this is the term liberalism. In the 19th century, liberal meant rational government rooted in natural law. The Founders were liberals. They sought to create a political order that reflected the people and history of the new country. They were not basing their arguments in religion or tradition. They were debating the most rational form of government for a land populated as it was at the time. Into the 20th century, liberal was a fairly good stand in for reason.

Fast forward to the middle of the last century and the term liberal had been conflated with the term progressive. They had become synonyms. Progressivism was anything but liberal in the traditional sense of the word. The progressives rooted their ideology in New England public Protestantism and oogily-boogily borrowed from European intellectuals of the Hegelian tradition. Regardless of it claims, Progressivism has always been in opposition to empiricism.

This redefinition of the word liberal is just one example of the larger assault on the common language. It has reached the point today where no reasonable person accepts anything said by the upper classes at face value. The reason is they no longer use the language as defined by the dictionary. The most recent example is the phrase “the science has changed” which has nothing to do with science. In fact, the only thing we can know for sure from that statement is the science has not changed.

The assault on cognitive meaning in the language and the rise of emotional language in public discourse is part of a larger dynamic in American political discourse that has come to redefine Left and Right. To be on the Left is to embrace an ideology rooted in your emotions about the topic and the people involved in the topic. To be on the Right is to engage rationally with a topic. Liberalism has become an assault on reason, while illiberalism is the defense of reality.

In his book After Liberalism, Paul Gottfried points out that what masquerades as liberalism in America is post-liberal. Things like pluralism and democracy are not part of the liberal tradition. 19th century liberals understood that not all men were invested in society, so not all men warranted the franchise. Similarly, they understood that all ideas were not equal or deserving of equal consideration. By extension, the people behind those ideas were not deserving of equal consideration.

Gottfried does not address it in his book, but one could argue that managerialism in America is a response to the collapse of reason in the political order. The formation of the administrative state and the concept of managerialism were the response to the collapse of the old constitutional order in the 19th century. These are not based in reason, but a practical necessity. The labyrinth of bureaucracy, private and public, that control public life exist to provide stability.

What this means is that the terms Left and Right have to reconsidered to fit the reality of the present age. The Left is illiberal, emotional and irrational. It is the rejection of the human condition, not in a spiritual sense, but in an empirical sense. It is not an accident that the people most into life-extension technology and various forms of virtual and hyper reality are on the Left. They seek to transcend human biology by living on forever in a new world created for them on-line.

This is why the term right-wing is cognitively meaningless. Those holding to the old economic definition are culturally and politically irrelevant. They oppose a political force that no longer exists. The traditionalists have a similar problem, because much of what can be defined as American tradition has been defined by the Left. Since Gettysburg, the Left has controlled the culture. So much so that things like abortion have a greater claim to tradition than opposition to it.

The greatest trick of radicalism has been to slowly lay claim to irrationality, things like tradition, emotion and spirituality, incorporating them into their theories of history and human organization. Their opposition has been left with sterile facts and figures or claims to tradition that no longer have emotional energy. The American Left is irrationality in the guise of science, emotion draped in the garb of reason, illiberalism wearing the costume of liberal governance.

Getting back to the terms Right and Left, the great crisis on the Right is rooted in the fact that the Right does not exist. It does not exist because it does not understand what it opposes or even if it opposes the Left. Until people desiring an alternative to the prevailing orthodoxy come to terms with the moral and linguistic reality of the prevailing orthodoxy, there can be no cognitive opposition. You have to know what you oppose, before you can explain why you oppose it.

As a practical matter, the West is now in a pre-Enlightenment period. This is why our age looks so much like late feudalism with better stuff. In 17th century France, there was no Right because there was no Left. There were just the way things were. Today, there is no Left or Right for the same reason. There is the prevailing orthodoxy with its established hierarchy and a bunch of disaffected peasants. The Right-Left dichotomy no longer exists practically or theoretically.


If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link. If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


The Great Embarrassment

Form the perspective of human society, there are two types of crises. The most familiar type of crisis is the unforeseen event that threatens order. A natural disaster, like an earthquake, is the obvious example. The ground suddenly begins to shake, buildings fall over and there is general panic. The people tasked with keeping the wheels of the society turning have to rush around to put things back in place. This unexpected event threatens the very order of society.

On the other hand, something like a hurricane or a major snowstorm is an external threat for which we expect the government to be prepared. Florida gets enough hurricanes that the people expect the government to know how to handle them, so if they do not manage the situation properly, it is a big problem. The elected officials come under pressure to explain why they screwed up. In other words, their failure to do their jobs causes a crisis for the political system.

The external crisis is mostly about getting through it as the external event does not last forever, so once it is done you go back to normal. The other type of crisis, on the other hand, is the internal one. This is where some irreconcilable contradiction in the rules of your system begin to threaten your system. It is not something you can wait out, as the contradiction is not going away. In fact, its existence becomes a greater threat each day that it is not resolved or ameliorated.

The Marxists used to talk about the inherent conflicts in capitalism. They argued that even though capitalism produces great material abundance, it destroys the social fabric that make it possible. Over time, the rate of return on capitalism will turn negative and the abundance will decline. This inevitably leads to social conflict and the collapse of the system. It was central to Marxism that the inherent contradictions within capitalism would inevitably lead to crisis.

The thing about a crisis driven by an internal contradiction is that it forces the people in charge to make a choice that they want to avoid. The communist ran into this when it became clear that Marxism had no replacement for price. If they acknowledged this truth, the justification for their rule evaporated. Alternatively, they could acknowledge that communism would never produce abundance, but then they would have to produce another justification for communism.

This story out of the NFL is a great example of the sort of irreconcilable contradictions that exist in the new social religion of our rulers. The assumption is that there are not enough black NFL head coaches. No one says what the number should be, but they all agree the current number is below the threshold. This is a habit you see everywhere with the new religion. What is the right amount of diversity? The answer is always more, but no one can say more than what.

What all of the beautiful people know is that the number of black coaches is less than the desired number and that is because of racism. All men are created equal, so what else could explain the disparity in the profession? Further, most coaches were players and most players are black. The logic of social Marxism says that the only possible explanation is some hidden barrier or conspiracy. The reason racial perfection does not exist is something structural.

That hidden barrier is always structural. The new religion insists that society is a constructed reality. In this case, as in all cases, white men constructed the reality, so it must be for the benefit of white men. That means the system naturally works against black men, which in this case means hidden or unconscious bias in the hiring of NFL head coaches. The solution is to compel teams to interview at least two black coaches as a wrecking ball against the white power structure.

This bit of logic is slamming into the reality of the business. Teams not only need to win games as a business reality, but they attract owners and executives who want to win games out of competitive instinct. This leads to two relevant results. One is they are always looking to exploit loopholes in the rules to gain an edge. The other is they are going to hire the coach they think can win. A team will hire a Volkswagen Beetle full of midget clowns if that means winning games.

Put another way, the inherent contradiction of the new social religion turns on the fact that the human condition is immutable. They may dream of a world of perfect equality, but men are not equal in the general sense or the particular sense. Therefore, human society is going to be defined by variation and inequality, reflecting the diversity of the people in that society. In the case of football, most players will be black, while most coaches will be white.

The crisis is that the true believers think their good intentions put them on the side of angels, which in this case means the side of nonwhites. In reality, they are alienating the people they claim to represent. Imagine being a young black coach hoping for a chance to be a head coach and quickly learning that your value is in ticking the box on a form required by the league. Regardless of your views on race relations, you have to empathize with this coach suing the league.

What the policy does is reveal that you can have a league where everyone tries to win or you can have a league where everyone tries to comport with the new racial morality of the new religion. You cannot have both. That means the owners can choose between wanting to be a hero to the black man or satisfying the needs of the business. In order to do both, they need to find a way to crush the dreams of this and other black coaches in the name of racial equity.

It would take a heart of stone not to laugh at it. The NFL is run by some of the most disreputable grifters finance capitalism can produce. The owners are mostly men who gamed the system to skim billions from the people. They have produced nothing and will leave no footprints when they are gone. The NFL is the full expression what is wrong with placing carnies at the top of the social order. No people deserve this misery more than the NFL owners and operators.

Of course, the NFL is the part of the iceberg we see. They represent the managerial elite of the American empire. This NFL policy is about soothing the sensitive psyches of the managerial elite. It is not really about the black coaches. It is about the elites and their need to reconcile their position in society. Instead of building monuments to their people or culture, they are building monuments to themselves by supporting these reckless social engineering schemes.

It is ironic that the people who come from an intellectual tradition rooted in the belief that the inherent contradictions of capitalism will bring down the system and usher in the communist utopia now sit atop a system riddled with internal contradictions. In the fullness of time, scholar will debate how it was possible that radial politics could be wrong about so much and stagger on for so long. The Enlightenment will inevitably be renamed The Great Embarrassment.


If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link. If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.


Wide Right

In January, The New Criterion organized a symposium around the topic of the changes in the conservative movement. They invited several writers to respond to the main essay written by Kim R. Holmes, the former Executive Vice President of The Heritage Foundation and former Assistant Secretary of State in the G. W. Bush Administration. The respondents are Ryan T. Anderson, Josh Hammer, Charles R. Kesler, Daniel J. Mahoney, James Piereson, Robert R. Reilly, and R. R. Reno.

Now, if this were a boxing match, it would have been called in the second response to Holmes, written by Josh Hammer, a member of Yoram Hazony’s National Conservatism movement. Hammer offers a lengthy critique of conservatism but the subtext is a bit of inescapable reality. The conservative movement, whatever its intensions, was a complete failure. It conserved nothing. In fact, it may be the biggest failure in the history of political movements.

Conservatives often respond to this with the claim that it was conservative foreign policy that defeated communism in the last century. That is true, but the point of defeating communism was to preserve American’s way of life and protect the ancient liberties of Western people. Winning the Cold War was supposed to be a means to an end, not an end in itself. Instead, the peace dividend has been spent up-armoring the administrative class and the increasingly tyrannical security regime.

One reason conservatism is in a crisis is the defenders of the movement refuse to acknowledge this reality, which calls into question their sincerity. The Holmes essay does not mention this fact and instead offers a long critique of the critics. In so doing he inadvertently reveals the source of the crisis within conservatism and the cause of its failure. His defense of John Locke displays an ignorance of why Locke mattered to the Founders and why he matters today.

Locke is considered the father of liberalism because he solved an important problem. Upon what authority should political philosophy rest its claims about politics and human society? If it is not the king and the social order that was passed down to the 17th century, then what should it be? If it is God, then it logically must be Scripture, but the Gospels are not much help when it comes to creating a political structure to govern society. Jesus had no opinion on parliamentary order.

Locke was a Christian who accepted that God created the world. Since God must be rational, it follows that his creation is rational. Further, it follows that he knew what he was making when he created the world. He would have no need to change those rules, as God does not make mistakes, so it follows that the rules of nature are fixed. Mankind lives in a world of fixed and discoverable rules, which means we can discover the rules that should govern human society.

Simply put, Locke removed religion and Scripture from the equation so that a moral philosophy could rest upon the authority of nature. It is not an accident that the Founders used the phrase, “Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God” in the Declaration of Independence. They were not basing their claims against the King on the words of their favorite philosopher. They were basing their claims on the same authority as their favorite philosopher.

Unlike the Founders, modern conservatives are not interested in the “Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God” and instead rest their authority on their favorite historical figures. They are fond of quoting Locke, Jefferson, or Lincoln, especially Lincoln, but these are just men. They can only offer a path to an authority upon which to build a political philosophy. Otherwise, they are as flawed as every man. Locke, for example, believed in the blank slate, which is complete nonsense.

This is why conservatism has been a failure. Without some authority to base their political claims, their opponents are free to dismiss them as mere tactics. From the perspective of the Left, the Founders were just men. On the other hand, the historical process is science and the foundation on which they make their moral claims. Legal and economic arguments are no use against moral arguments, which is why the Left has swept conservatism from the field.

To his credit, Holmes is correct to point out that the National Conservatives are terrified of being associated with identity politics. The trouble is, there is no way to have nationalism without national identity, even if you try to hide that identity behind talk of customs and traditions. Those customs and traditions did not fall from the sky. They are the product of a people defined by the mating decisions of their ancestors and the location of those decisions.

Holmes is also correct to point out that the National Conservatives are wrong about Burke’s influence on the thinking of the Founders. This is an attempt on their part to replace one favorite philosopher with another in order to claim the high ground against establishment conservatives. Further, to pretend that Burke was not well aware of what it meant to be British, to have a British identity, when he was defending the traditions and customs of the empire is to exempt oneself from reality.

The most curious response to Holmes on behalf of the “common good conservatism” side is from Ryan T. Anderson, president of the Ethics and Public Policy Center. The group describes itself as “dedicated to applying the Judeo-Christian moral tradition to critical issues of public policy”. He correctly points out the fatal flaw in social contract theory, which is the bedrock of the conservative movement. There is nothing in nature or in Locke’s writing that requires a social contract that only guarantees rights.

The proto-society that is coming together could plausibly agree to sacrifice their rights entirely in order to preserve the commonly held property of the members. The human sciences tell us that this is probably the basis of the first human settlements. Kin groups collaborated with related kin groups to maintain hunting grounds and water supplies. Similarly, they could have come together to protect some natural curiosity with which they held a shared spiritual meaning.

The archeological record suggests that what first brought disparate kin groups together was not an agreement to respect each other’s rights. Instead, it was common spiritual belief. Göbekli Tepe, in what is now Turkey, is known as humanity’s first temple. It was constructed by pastoral people as some a shared religious site. It is assumed that agriculture caused people to settle down, but this site offers another plausible reason to settle and cooperate, shared belief in a common set of gods.

That has always been the trouble with social contract theory. It is a thing that exists as a logical construct to solve the problem of natural rights theory. That is, lacking an authority on which to base natural rights, this imaginary contract between people is conjured from thin air to be that foundation stone for the theory. Natural rights theory assumes an axiom for which there is no evidence in history. Further, if such a contract existed, it probably had nothing to do with rights.

An interesting observation by Robert R. Reilly in his critique of the integralists is that “They wish to find themselves in a pre-Reformation Christendom.” Integralism is revanchism, which has run through the conservative movement since the 1960’s. The integralists may dream of returning to Camelot, but the current conservatives dream of returning to 1980. The neoconservatives dream of returning to 1950’s Brooklyn. Conservatism is the promise of a “do-over” where this time the good guys win.

Reilly also offers up this strange argument against the common good. “A love of one’s own can only take one so far. One naturally loves one’s own, but is one’s own always deserving of love? If this love lacks grounding beyond a bare attachment to one’s own, how is it different from others’ preference for their own? Strict nationalism fails to the extent that it does not take into account natural law and natural rights, which together condemn the universal state and expose its inherently tyrannical nature.”

Conservatives used to condemn this sort of universalism to the woolly-headed intellectuals who spent too much time reading Marx. Conservatism simply assumed that custom and convention are what allowed people to live peaceably. Civil society was the product of generations of trial and error, the result being a collection of compromises we call culture. There could never be a universal state, as there can never be a universal culture, because there is no such thing as universal man.

Like all modern conservatives, Reilly is terrified of what naturally flows from putting the interests of your own ahead of strangers. Conservatives have accepted the left-wing claim that anything exclusionary is exploitive and immoral. Loving your child more than the child of the stranger inevitably leads to fascism, according to the theology of the modern Left. Whether it is out of fear, cowardice or stupidity, contemporary conservatives have accepted the morality of the open society.

As a result, they have no choice but to reject that the common good can even exist and they busy themselves making the conservative case for the open society. In fairness, the common good conservatives suffer from this same affliction. Yoram Hazony’s book, The Virtue of Nationalism, tries to make the case for nationalism, but is repeatedly poleaxed by the fact that nationalism can only be rooted in biology, history and location. It also must be exclusive.

This is the problem faced by all of the common good conservatives. Unless they are prepared to make the case that their program includes all of humanity, they must define the who and whom of this new utilitarian conservatism. Who is inside the domain covered by the common good and who lies outside of that domain? More important, who decides? Further, upon what authority will this person be selected and what is the authority upon which they will rely to draw the boundaries?

The common good conservatives are silent on this, even though they privately will confess that their concept of a nation is the same one anathematized by the Left. The Finns should decide what is best for the Finns, even if that means excluding non-Finns from their lands. By nature of the mating decisions of their ancestors in their ancestral lands, they have the sole authority over what it means to be Finnish and what is in the best interests of the Finnish people.

Again, the common good conservatives understand this reality, but they also know that they will be hurled into the void if they acknowledge the obvious. To their credit, the neoconservatives have always understood this and limited their scope to foreign affairs. Their social criticism was always just window dressing that never dared question the morality of the open society. Kim Homes, someone who has traveled in neoconservative circles his whole life, certainly gets this.

Taken as a whole this debate bumps into the question of whether or not it is possible to have conservatism in a democratic society. As Russell Kirk pointed out, the first principle of conservatism is the belief that there exists an enduring moral order. In a political system where the truth, including moral truth, is decided by 50% plus one, there is no room for an enduring moral order. The evidence of this is all around us as men put on sundresses and declare themselves women.

The Founders understood the danger of democracy. This is why they explicitly said the new constitution provided checks against it. The democratic elements included in the new political order were bounded by limits on the state. Modern conservatives reject this and instead think they can achieve conservative ends by convincing 50% plus one to support their claims. They excitedly talk about democracy, because they are operating under the belief they can win over the fickle mobs.

This is because modern conservatism has abandoned that first principle of conservatism. The libertarians, the neoconservatives and the civic nationalists find the idea of an enduring moral order as horrifying as their supposed enemies on the Left. Like the modern Progressive, the modern conservative has made the shifting will of the people the sole authority. In such a world there can be no permanence, no tradition and no appeal to custom. Therefore, there can be no conservatism.

Whether it is the revanchism of the integralists or the sterile nationalism of Hazony’s brand of conservatism, they fail for the same reason mainstream conservatism has failed. Without a moral foundation upon which to make political claims, conservatism is nothing more than a negotiating position within the democratic system. It is why today’s Progressive fad turns into tomorrow’s conservative principle. The modern conservative always starts from the last Progressive victory.

That is the crisis in modern conservatism. For there to be a legitimate conservative movement, it must first come to terms with what it is it seeks to defend. Then it must answer why this must be preserved. These are moral questions that Locke answered by looking at the natural world as an orderly place that operates by fixed rules. As such, human happiness lies in the orderly society that operates under a rational and persistent set of rules.

This naturally means a rejection of the Hegelian theory of history that is the moral basis of both the Left and the prevailing moral order. The hand of history is not carrying mankind to some promised land where all moral questions are answered. A genuine alternative to the prevailing orthodoxy is not a debate about its factual inaccuracies, but a rejection of it on moral grounds. That requires a courage that modern conservatism and common good conservatism are unable to muster.


If you like my work and wish to kick in a few bucks, you can buy me a beer. You can sign up for a SubscribeStar subscription and get some extra content. You can donate via PayPal. My crypto addresses are here for those who prefer that option. You can send gold bars to: Z Media LLC P.O. Box 432 Cockeysville, MD 21030-0432. Thank you for your support!


Promotions: We have a new addition to the list. Havamal Soap Works is the maker of natural, handmade soap and bath products. If you are looking to reduce the volume of man-made chemicals in your life, all-natural personal products are a good start. If you use this link you get 15% off of your purchase.

The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is a tea, but it has a mild flavor. It’s autumn here in Lagos, so it is my daily beverage now.

Minter & Richter Designs makes high-quality, hand-made by one guy in Boston, titanium wedding rings for men and women and they are now offering readers a fifteen percent discount on purchases if you use this link. If you are headed to Boston, they are also offering my readers 20% off their 5-star rated Airbnb.  Just email them directly to book at sales@minterandrichterdesigns.com.