Voluntary Suicide

In debates about monetary policy, there is an old saying about the fundamental flaw in hard money arguments. “If your government is so corrupt you need a gold standard to keep it under control, your government is corrupt enough to find a way around the gold standard.“ It is an observation that is fundamentally true about the reality of ruling classes, regardless of the political system. It also speaks to the way liberal democracy warps the way the intellectual classes think about the relationship between ruler and ruled.

In all forms of government prior to the Enlightenment, the defects of the state were assigned to the people in charge of the state. In a tyranny, problems in one of the provinces meant the tyrant replaced the local governor. In a monarchy, bad policy coming from the crown meant the king was the problem. If he was enough of a problem, he would have a hunting accident and there would be a new king. In all forms of personal rule, the assumption is the problems arise from the person doing the ruling, not the system.

Since the Enlightenment, in contrast, whenever problems in governance are discussed, it is assumed that the system is the issue and not the people. This is true within various forms of socialism or liberal democracy. The one obvious exception is Chinese communism, where changing the people is still the rule. Thar’s mostly due to the fact that China was always Chinese first, communist second. Otherwise, the debate about government is about systems rather than the sorts of people who should rule.

All forms of communism start from the assumption that property arrangements, and relationships between property holders, is the basis of human society. This was certainly true of feudalism, but communists picked up where Rousseau left off and assumed property is the fork in the road of human societies. The communist solution is to get rid of property. This allows the scientific socialist to create new social arrangements that are beneficial to all of society. It’s a property solution to the human condition.

Similarly, libertarians start from the assumption that property is the basis of human relations and human society. Contrary to the communist, libertarians see the violation of property rights as the source of human misery. Their solution is to sanctify private property, by re-establishing it as the basis of human relations. That’s the thing about libertarianism. When you strip away the window dressing, it is simply a system property relations. Like communism, it is a property solution to the human condition.

Democratic systems are an effort to address the natural inequality of society by harnessing the will of the majority in the political system. The notion of “one man, one vote” acknowledges that all men may not be equal in wealth and status, but they have an equal stake in society, so they get an equal vote. The flaw is that what is good for the individual is often bad for society. If everyone votes their interests, or what they think of as their interests, you may end up invading Sicily and losing the Peloponnesian War.

Even if democracy does not result in a catastrophic failure, as with the Greeks, the system we call liberal democracy produces unfavorable results. A long observed problem with democracy is something called the Condorcet paradox, where the results swing between two fixed extremes. We see this in American democracy. We get one party in charge for a few elections, then for some reason, the results of the next election go the other way. The last two elections are pretty good example of cyclical results.

That’s the motivation behind schemes like quadratic voting, which seek to tie economic interest to the weight of the vote. The very short version is that everyone gets so much vote capital to spend on the issues they think are important. The greater the interest in an issue, the more voting stock you invest in it. Presumably this means people with no interest in some topic, will not vote on that topic. It is an interesting theory that is not based in reality and could never work in the real world. It’s a fun exercise for the bored.

Again, what you see here, and quadratic voting is a good example, is an effort to arrive at a system solution to the human condition. We know some people are not very smart and are not going to make rational choices when voting. We know there are evil people who will exploit dumb people. Democracy allows for no way to address this, as the starting assumption is all votes are equal, because everyone has the same stake in the outcome of elections. Quadratic voting is a clever attempt at vote-stripping that will fool no one.

The central defect of all political and economic systems since the Enlightenment is they assume there is a rational system that can address the human condition. Whether it was socialists trying to solve the problems that arise from material inequality or the humanists, who seek to address the biological reality of man, the assumption is there is a system that once in place, people will voluntarily support, thus making authority unnecessary. At the heart of all western political philosophy is the dream of voluntarism.

The funny thing is there is never much speculation into why it is or how it is that men voluntarily cooperate. The fascists, to their credit, looked at the brotherhood of trench socialism, as a model for voluntarism. In times of crisis and great danger, men of all classes and interests will join together in the struggle. Marxists came to rely upon perpetual revolution as a way to maintain discipline, but that hardly qualifies as a voluntarist solution to human cooperation. It’s an excuse for state terror.

French conservatives, writing in the later years of the Revolution, probably came the closest to understanding this problem. Joseph de Maistre looked at society as an organic thing, where the parts were defined by their relationship with one another. Individually, they could not exists, because their form and purpose was defined entirely within the state and in relation to the other parts of society. The members of society voluntarily participated in their role, because it is what defined them as human beings.

The fact that the old aristocratic order, that conservatives came to represent, collapsed in the face of Enlightenment radicalism, suggests it either had different defects or never addressed the problem of human cooperation. The long experiment that followed the French Revolution, all the murder and mayhem that defined it, has arrived at the same point as the old aristocratic order. The question is what will come along to push over the liberal democratic order, promising to solve the problem of human cooperation.

Perhaps it is just voluntary, cooperative suicide.

104 thoughts on “Voluntary Suicide

  1. There are people who just want to be left alone and people who just can’t leave *anything* alone. A forced solution finds one group or the other in charge. A cooperative solution finds a balance point and each group voluntarily accepts it and enforces it. Door number three is the cooperative suicide thing.

  2. Next comes diversity. With diversity everything is wonderful. Paradise on Earth. You had better agree because Diversity does not tolerate diversity of thought

  3. It’s not voluntary suicide, more like a ‘reality check cleansing’. We re coming to the end of a period, from the 1960s, where life was so safe and undramatic that it became a soft game. That eventually, on a subconscious level, became boring b/c we are selected to survive, not to spend 80 yrs in a safe space playground. So, ppl started acting out and getting more and more hysterical. And eventually that huge, slumbering grizzly in the corner, ‘reality’, is now starting to wake up again. And life is getting more dramatic. And honestly more interesting. And so having a little testo in the bottom of the barrel is becoming relevant again and all the soy boys, b/c this is an environment where they re fucked, are acting out hysterically. And girls being girls, are reacting w hysteria, a Darwinian mechanism to challenge an alpha male to make her shut the hell up. And so this may be a sort of genetic bottleneck where all the flummery is removed to make better room for the lean and mean. A mega extinction, like the dinosaurs and later woolly mammoth and sabertooth jack had. A time to get rid of soy boy and fat chick so ugly no man wants to spend time and energy putting food into her angry, fat hole. Crude or not I think it is more something like that.

    Btw, on the Chinese still replacing men, not systems, maybe. Fits w the conjecture that East Asians are very good at concrete systems (like a set of high level men) but not at general abstractions (ideologies, religions, etc)

    • The fat, ugly chicks end up getting knocked up by black guys. The four foot Mexican fat ones end up knocked up by another four foot Mexican dude. The ONLY way to keep the fat, ugly population in check is a national bankruptcy that terminates the WIC and Section 8 programs among others. Fat+ugly usually = stupid. They could only survive on a welfare check. Literally. They’ve been bred for transfer payments only. They wouldn’t survive any more than an oxygen starved bulldog would survive without humans in a wilderness area.

  4. The Founding Fathers were acutely aware that they needed to guard against the human condition, and the governmental system they designed was as good as it gets for governing a geographically large, diverse country: a federal, constitutional republic that included a lower house elected by democratic means albeit with a sharply limited franchise. This governing structure acknowledged the difference between a country (i.e., a geographic region governed by an entity) and a nation (i.e., a group of people bound by common heritage, beliefs, and interests.) Any American with an ounce of common sense in 1790 would have understood that an Indian of the Iroquois Nation had no standing to vote in the American Nation, just as an American would have no standing to vote in the Iroquois Nation.

    America started on the road to perdition with the reconstruction era amendments in the wake of the Civil War. These Amendments ushered in the era of Federal Supremacy and formalized the governmental structure that allowed the Federal government, which was largely controlled by Northeast interests, to dictate policy in the states.

    The Progressive era kicked it into high gear with vastly expanded voting rights, a Federal takeover of the banking system via the Federal Reserve System, the income tax, and a litany of Supreme Court cases expanding Federal power which gave rise to the Administrative State that now defines the fourth branch of government.

    The Civil Rights era was just the afterburner kicking in after 50 years of progressive rule, and now we’ve had another 50 years of rot. It’s now an article of faith that everyone on Earth is entitled to American citizenship and should get to vote. Americans in 2018 were incensed that North Dakota blocked some Native Americans who lived on reservations from voting because they lacked proper ID. The American from 1790 would think us insane for allowing a Native American who is a member of a separate Nation and lives on land governed by that Nation to vote in our election.

    I’m not sure the Enlightenment is the culprit. Rather, I think it has been a slow but steady abandonment of Enlightenment-based reasoning that resulted in our current mess.

    • Perfect comment. I think it was the establishment of the public school systems that created uniformity, and allowed old spinster matrons to start the pre-cuck era, which went full blown cuck in three generations. They needed uniformity. Uniformity does not allow for deep, thoughtful people. Also, the consolidation of the newspaper industry didn’t help. It was out of control by the 1890’s.

  5. The big fight that goes on in our country (among other countries) is really a fight between old money and new money. By the turn of the 20th century America was established enough were this new gentry class used its influence to take over. Trump is old money, but he prefers the company of new money, and has the garish demeanor of new money. They hate him more for that. The politics are secondary.

    Our system is deteriorating because our gentry has deteriorated. They’re mostly gender confused nutcases. They have animals that defecate on the living room floor. They fund all kinds of crazy groups. They become enthralled with weird sex parties, they all think they’re some Picasso etc. Think of the wealthy family in The Big Lebowski. That movie pinned them down perfectly. Think of just how crazy the Getty family is by now.

    Every so many generations the new money just takes over the place during the next crisis. Sometimes it comes with the system itself being replaced.

  6. The problem of all systems is the same. Nepotism. Even the sons and daughters of the Soviet era communists were sequestered away in tzar era country houses and plopped into executive jobs in the proletariat. All systems end in nepotism. I saw that the day good ol’ “securin’ the homeland” George W. won the Presidency from the “Senator’s son” who became a Senator, Al Gore. Suddenly democracy appears to be no different than a 1790’s monarchy.

    Monarchy died precisely because the son of the son of the conqueror was an imbecile. A semi-retarded, aloof ignoramus being sequestered by viceroys of different kind. Each with his own agenda, which was raw power and money at the expense of the citizens. All systems die in nepotism. The smarter crowd eventually becomes outsiders, usually foreigners, chipping away at the core.

    • No, it isn’t. You pulled this theory out of thin air. It has no basis in reality.

      Kin-centered systems are generally successful; they produce skin in the game. Sometimes they fail due to the succession problem, but that’s in spite of “nepotism”, not because of it. Would you willingly and knowingly corrupt and sell out an institution that you knew you’d be leaving to your son?

      • Think of a family business. The father builds it. The son grows it and leverages it. The grandson steals from the cash register runs it into the ground. Countries are no different. You can have hereditary systems, but you need massive influence hanging over them from various parties who ALSO have skin in the game. I always found the Venetian Republic to do very well in that respect. It can’t just be a family business. Otherwise you get baby Doc Duvalier. Too bad we squandered our Republic, it would have lasted much much longer.

        What I’m saying is that the son is an overindulged idiot. Not always, but the grandson sure is.

        • Too many people are unfamiliar with the political history of Venice. When the first doges tried to convert their office from one of election to one of heredity, the people put them down, and when they tried again years later they created the council of ten to keep the doge even more in check. The fact that there is no bust of doge Falieri, IIRC, attests to this fact. Longest surviving republic in the history of the world.

  7. A polite society has manners, which come from an age when the wrong word or gesture would get you killed.
    The morays and manners of polite society are dead.
    They will return when they need to fulfill the job they were meant to do.
    Which is to create a world in which men can associate freely with each other and not need a concealed carry permit.

    • I hate to break it to you, but this is exactly the system that progressives have created. The wrong word or gesture means you are guilty of racism, sexism, transphobia, etc. Or just some sort of microaggression. They’ve recreated exactly the type of complex Victorian system of breeding and manners that you seem to pine for.

      You just don’t like their choice in customs or royalty.

  8. As is so often the case in political theory, Shakespeare is a better political thinker than most political theorists. Not because he’s smarter (he’s not) but because he thinks in dynamic terms rather than armchair static idealizing. He couples the great ideas with the necessities of dramatic conflict which mirror real human events: changing situations, specific individuals with strange flaws, unpredictable shifts of fortune. It’s the same reason your political theory ideas are incomplete if you only read Plato and Aristotle, and you skip Aeschylus, Sophocles, and the E-dude. Hell, even Aristophanes’ silly comedy “Women in Power” says more about real life than John Stuart Mill does. Saintly little Antigone has a big problem precisely because Creon also has A Major Fucking Point.

    But for the purposes of the OP, back to Shakespeare. Read act one, scene one of Coriolanus. A mob of starving commoners want to raid the senatorial granaries to stave off hunger, and a smug Senator tries to pacify and out-fox them, by condescendingly recounting the old conservative organic theory of the body politic (pace J. de Maistre) in “the allegory of the belly” — viz. the idea that all the parts of the body have their due share in the whole, each has its proper dignity and its contributions and rewards, all should co-operate, etc.

    So far, so good — but then the Senator can’t help himself. He starts to smugly berate and insult the commoners, calling them the “great toe” of the body, lowly and filthy and undignified… and he tips his hand. He’s not really one of them, part of the body. He’s the Cloud People.

    Theory, meet Practice.

  9. Machiavelli, who stood athwart the transition from a time when the Church held a monopoly on teaching the fallen nature of man and the Enlightenment view that man is the measure of all things and is essemtially perfectible, taught those who sought power that it is better to be feared than loved. Human nature is inescapably heirarchical. There will always be elites to whom power flows and from whom power is exercised. Every political system which refuses to acknowledge this reality and strives to impose an unnatural egalitarianism is doomed to fail. The only remedy for the individual vis-a-vis the power elite is to inculcate virtue. The man who grows in prudence, justice, fortitude and temperance either escapes the attention of the elites’ power plays or has the inner strength to weather their vicissitudes.

    • In a well defined and visible social hierarchy, one at least has an understanding of one’s place within the hierarchy. It might not be a good place, but it is at least a defined place, with rituals and responsibilities in both directions. Egalitarianism is society not telling anyone their place in the hierarchy, leading to people assuming roles that they are not fit for and then getting slapped down. Often without ever understanding why. Our “betters” pretend there’s no hierarchy as a matter of signaling virtue and allowing themselves to ignore their responsibilities to those lower on the hierarchy.

  10. The “Bill of Rights” limits the politician’s ability to legislate against specific “rights” guaranteed to the citizens. (Although the first and second amendments are under attack) The Confederate States Constitution recognized a need for even greater restraints on a federal government after just 72 years of experience and added this clause in lieu of the too vague “General Welfare” verbiage; “No bounties shall be granted from the treasury, nor shall any duties or taxes on importations from foreign nations be laid to promote or foster any branch of industry” Reducing the scope of the legislators authority reduces the importance of elections. A Constitutional Republic is still the best idea, after this, and a few other adjustments to the Constitution.

    • (Although the first and second amendments are under attack)

      There isn’t an amendment in the Bill of Rights that’s not dead or under attack. Even the third.

      No Constitutional system can survive when the enforcing government is in active collusion to ignore and undermine it. Judges and lawyers invent clever wordage to explain how

      “no law” means a vast web of laws,

      “shall not be infringed” means infringements at every turn,

      the most arbitrary searches become “reasonable,” and warrantless or authorized by a secret warrant no citizen is allowed to examine.

      “speedy” trials stretch on for years, and

      “cruel and unusual” devolves to the lowest denominator of the most bleeding heart interpreter.

    • D. C. N;
      Intersting. So apparently the Confederates were so idealistic or were so ignorant of how manufacturing works that they supposed that they’d be able to materialize the tools of war they so urgently needed from the soil they so much valued. IOW, they inflexibly bound themselves hand and foot constitutionally to prevent any possible incentives being given to their own potential producers. No wonder they lost.

      • Yep. All they wanted was to continue to sell their bloody cotton. Industrialization isn’t good for the estate holders in a feudal economy.

  11. Like many other innate proclivities, cooperative behavior is an evolved trait. Pack animals didn’t vote to hunt as a group and then see if it worked out better. Rather, over a long enough time span, those animals that did so likely avoided starvation and reproduced more frequently. Paleo-archaeologists have found evidence of similar pack hunting behavior in ancient humans, and we likely still have some residue of brain wiring for this. As to the main topic of this post, no form of government is likely to fix our devolution problem. Natural fitness selection has been erased and a modern artificial variant pointing in the opposite direction.

  12. What the libertarians don’t get is that all money is ultimately fiat money. I’m old but enough to remember the Hunt brothers cornering the silver market, demonstrating that even commodity monies can be fergled by someone sufficiently determined.

  13. There are only three mechanisms to fight anti-social behaviors: conscience (a “policeman” inside every brain), social pressure (a “police” in every family and community) and incentives (the law, a real policeman every some thousand people).

    The Enlightenment wanted freedom, which means removing conscience and social pressure. This is why all problems should be solved by appealing to the law.

    Rousseau was explicit about that. For him, men are naturally good so the evil is caused by evil political institutions. So the way to go is to reform the institutions.

    This creates an anxiety about finding the “right political system” while moral education is neglected. You end up with a savage population with no moral restraint in a “every man for himself” society (as Dutch explains) and a totalitarian system with more and more laws that are never enough.

    • Conscience (or at least teaching how to listen to your internal voice), social pressure and even incentives were once provided by the Church. Now most western churches do none of these.

    • This is the crux of the matter right here. And a lot of the problem began with the published thoughts of smart people like Newton and Locke. This set a premium on a certain kind of intelligence that people did not see in kings or nobility, and people came to value the potential abilities of such in preference to traditional authority.

      That’s where the mania for a society ruled by “reason” came from. Problem is “reason” turned out to be the unadorned prejudices of people who thought they were smart.

  14. Before we can even get to the more deep-think problems like choice of systems, we have to handle the more immediately pressing problem, and in our dire situation the literally fatal problem, of our Hostile Elite.

    As Z put it quite succinctly in a recent podcast, (to paraphrase), our problem is that we are now burdened with Overlord Class who believe that they are Not Us… and in all too many instances, they are in actual reality Not, In Fact, Us.

    We may as well be governed by giant Termite Creatures who live on blocks of sodium and communicate by exchanging long protein strings. It’s really gotten that bad. Recently in a squabble on Twatter, a sitting United States Representative, after the usual bloviations over gun control, felt obliged to casually mention that the U.S. owned nuclear weapons (“which are legit,”) he snarkily asided, thereby implying that citizen-owned guns were not “legit,” — and darkly hinted that the gubmint would use nukes against US gun owners.

    THAT’S the position on the board, peeps. White to play; mate in five.

  15. That pre-Enlightenment rulers had a personal, property interest in the realm they ran (as well as a very personal responsibility for running it right) is an very interesting point. Right now we can say that ‘the realm’ is subject to a ‘tragedy of the commons’ among the elites, who, apparently, just want to strip-mine it for their personal benefit. So is this due to an intrinsic flaw of democracy_?**

    Despite the Enlightenment’s deliberate lies* about primitive man living in an edenic, blissful state of nature where nobody owned anything, there has always been private property. That’s (among other reasons) why most primitive cultures buried a person with their *personal possessions*, most particularly their weapons.

    The inter-cultural differences mainly concerned which sorts of things were private property and which were group property. Group property was defended and enforced by tribal warfare. Your private property rights were enforced by your clan under the threat of inter-clan warfare, which would make it easy for neighboring tribes to take everybody’s property, group and private.
    *The Enlightenment coincided with The Age of Discovery, during which there were plenty of traveler and explorer accounts of the doings of primitive peoples, few of which were exemplarily in any way.
    ** It all boils down to ‘skin in the game’ doesn’t it_? If democracy = power with no/not enough skin in the game, then the result is arbitrary and capricious politics.

    • Elites don’t merely “want” to strip-mine, they have powerful incentives to do so and none to hold them back.

      Imagine you are given control over a large house. It costs you nothing, personally, to maintain. Yet you do not own it. You can’t sell it. Moreover, in 5 years you lose your control, and can never have it again.

      Would you invest a lot of money into improving that house? Or just rent it out to the bidder with the highest offer and the lowest standards?

  16. Democratic representative systems are really not an effective means of government unless the population is 1) homogeneous, 2) has sufficient IQ and 3) is distributed over a relatively small geographical area so that everyone has to live with the consequences.

    • Yes. Democracy worked in Athens when it was essentially a big town. As soon as they started to build an empire, it was a disaster.

      • The system in Sparta collapsed due to a progressively shrinking number of elite men that could not marry before the age of 30, concentrating wealth into fewer hands. Athens may have invented the university, but Sparta invented feminism and credentialism.

        • The Spartans never mustered the courage to address the glaring flaws in their system that penalized large families and actively prevented their warrior class from breeding, Bad system.

        • The Helot system contributed to this problem just as well. Its expensive to keep people like this and wasteful of your human capital

          Not every Spartan male was suited to soldiering and not every dime you make needs to go to war

          Its like nation of especially vicious bullies and that kind of thing is brittle . Once it pushed to hard, its over and good riddance.

          • Ahnuld as Governor once made the statement that he had the “knowledge of Athens and the power of Sparta”. That statement was true in inconvenient ways. The transnational degenerate elite of coastal California depend on that helot mob penned into the interior. At least in Latin America the elite do the courtesy of identifying nominally with the nation, despite often being of Sephardic/Lebanese/Peninsular descent.

  17. As always, I will register my protest of the democracy shtick. Ruling classes, oligarchs, are a fixture of all societies. What makes China and the rest of the world’s states what they are is the elite that rule them first and the other elites they compete with. A distant runner up, much farther down that list might be ideology and nominal political system, but I would argue it scarcely deserved that rank, whatever it was.

    The ruling class chose this trajectory for you. Asked to vote, even 1990s to 2000s Californians rejected the latest “globohomo,” project. Put the support of any mildly progressive aim to the vote and it would likely fail a plebiscite. What accounts for this in the theory that democracy has somehow allowed a unique opportunity for grifters to lead the gullible? Blaming the system of liberal democracy is little better than blaming the diaspora for their visible role in the managerial class. In many ways the former is worse because it directs attention away from the elite and their managerial class and focuses on the nebulous ways in which power structures work in a vacuum.

    • You said it yourself: ruling classes and oligarchs are a fixture of all societies. Also known as the Iron Law of Oligarchy.

      Yet liberal democracy tells us that there cannot be a ruling class, that no oligarch may have power over you. Thus, liberal democracy is at odds with reality, and must deny reality in order to persist.

      Dictators may lie out of opportunism, but with liberal democracy, lying is quite literally baked into the system.

  18. “The communist solution is to get rid of property.”

    The proper solution is to get rid of communists.

  19. I think that what comes next is already out there to see: For lands like Italy or Hungary, it’s (to quote the title of the Tom Wolfe novel) “Back to blood.” For everyone else in Europe, it’s the fallacious belief that recent imports are going to forsake their blood and put their faith in relatively new abstractions. It’s all very dumb; Turks in Germany are more hard-line jingoist than Turks still in Turkey (it’s that “absimilation” Derbyshire talks about). When mainstream conservatives seem clueless or hurt that black American athletes view themselves as solely black and don’t care for America all that much, you almost have to feel bad for them. America’s a few hundred years old. Race is tens of thousands of years old. Race is just tradition made flesh, and what liberals call “racism” should be a traditional conservative bedrock value, not an excuse to waffle about the democratic plantation or them being the “real racists.”

    • Yeah, I reckon our values and system will emerge organically out of the struggle to free ourselves of those “relatively new abstractions” and get back to blood. Like the Zman often says, win first, system later. I think we need to encourage our friends to think carefully about what happens if we don’t win.

  20. The reason the old aristocracy didn’t address the problem of human cooperation is that Karl Marx was right — industrial modes of production really do “alienate” people. As you often ask, how is it even possible to have a community in a world of Amazon Prime? I don’t think even a Maistre-style return to throne-and-altar would address this (though we seem to be giving an Islamic theocracy a shot, especially in the UK). Other suggestions for building communities, “imagined” or otherwise, might entail something like a Soviet-style internal passport system. Marx was right about that, too. How depressing. Hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving!

    • I’m going to be posting about this more in the future and do a podcast on two on it, but the birth of conservatism in Europe was as much a part of the revolution as the revolution itself. As such, conservatives often had the same blind spots as their radical opponents. The need to reject the main aspects of the Enlightenment also created blind spots. This is the reason the modern American Right failed so miserably.

    • I think a lot of people assumed that one road to political legitimacy is, roughly speaking, stuff. I.e., a strong economy. That Communism was illegitimate because it literally didn’t deliver the goods. And that’s true, as far as it goes. If people are starving, the government is, and should be, in danger.

      But I think that westerners are starting to realize that there’s also something deeply, deeply wrong with our giganticist consumerism. There are actually a lot of media reports (and presidential Tweets) about how the economy is humming along, but nobody cares and the psychological drift is more and more apocalyptic.

      • Consumerism has proceeded along a line of (native) populating aging, and an increasing “bimodal distribution”. Despite the considerable backlash, digital microtransactions and e-thots have generated filthy lucre for their creators. The trappings of the middle class have grown out of reach, but natives are generally reluctant to communalize living arrangement in the ways that immigrants and invaders are wont to do.

        • They are not encouraged to do this by hundreds of years of Hajinal conditioning

          The State is no fan either, extended families, tribes and clans threaten State power. They have since the Middle Ages

          Also on a more immediate thing, communal living means much less consumption of everything. This brings much of the States
          raison d’être and very legitimacy into question and the corporate master who keep the thing going for themselves would be in deep kimchee

          • I think this is a particularly North American “frontier” setting, inner Hajnal Euros have a lower frequency of moving than we do. Interestingly, geographic mobility in the US is decreasing, a good sign perhaps. The late 20th century introduced the “starter home”, the “mobile home” and the “retirement home”. All of which are untenable in the constrained 21st Century. Not an accident that Kushner Cos. has an increasing position as a slumlord.

    • Marx wouldn’t have foreseen post industrial tech and of course his language was limited to the world he knew old Karl was right about a lot of things including the notion that labor, employees owning the means of production is better than capital owning it

      We can’t get there in the means the Reds wanted though and no State will ever abolish itself . What will happen is I suspect catabolic collapse , society will just become to hard to maintain so we won’t and lot of places will revert to what they can sustain

      As a reactionary , this is a good thing in my mind while I’d like to keep the US a European colony rather than an Asiatic one (Amerind, Mestizo, etc) the current situation threatens human survival and needs to change

  21. I think what happened is that huge populations and complex economies emerged sort of on their own. The rulers at the time had no idea how to manage them, and no alternative rulers with the know how existed, so fuck it I guess we’ll build systems to try to manage things. All in all it’s worked out rather well, minus the horrifying death tolls in the industrial wars. But even then I think it’s fair to pin the wars on individuals, specifically the British foreign office.

    As for the future I think politics and technology are developing in a way that undercuts internationalism, especially in supply chains. I’d expect a lot of local production of goods and services, think for example 3-D printed dental tools, that replaces the 200 supplier shipping container madness of the current age.

    The main challenges are still dysgenics and demographics. If we can get that right politics and economics will work themselves out.

    • The British foreign office is not an individual. It’s also not part of the Prussian empire which initiated the wars with Austria,France and tried to start a war with the British (twice) in the late 19th century. Prussians finally got what they wanted with WW1.

      Individuals driving nations into war are only capable of doing so because of the existing systems which allow them the power and freedom to do that . The idea that the individual politician’s or monarch’s executive power is not a manifestation of the system is silly.

  22. I want to live under a government that even if it was controlled by my worse enemy, I would be OK.

    The early American republic was the closest thing to that created by man so far.

    If authorities tried to trump up criminal charges against me, they would have to convince 12 of my neighbors that I committed a crime, under clear laws that applied to everyone. If they wanted to get dirt on me, I had the requirement of a warrant and probable cause that a crime had been committed. Tripartite government did a pretty good job of limiting official abuse for 200 years.

    • The ideal scenario, and I don’t envison it happening, is a Continental Singaporean “constitutional fascism” that still is able to allow regional autonomy. But what is it that unifies this country? And what unifies the cadre? Singapore had no natural resources and two large hostile neighbors. The early PAP cadre all received their education in Britain. Today’s Ivy Leaguers are specifically selected to ensure that rural whites like Kris Kobach are vastly underrepresented.

    • Isn’t Liberia modeled on our tripartite gov? If your enemies, or worst incompetents run the show, nothing works. Our system worked for 200 yrs because, relatively speaking, we had an honest industrious population.

      • Sidvic, exactly. I think Z-man is circling the issue and letting us find the nub of it ourselves, but good systems can’t make bad actors into good citizens. Using the system to try to properly structure a group of dishonest, selfish people won’t get you where you need to go.

      • People were not remotely honest in the near past. Read Sinclair’s The Jungle or The Good Old Days–They Were Terrible! by Otto Betteman for examples

        Also a nation founded on the idea old slavery as cheap labor is basically a bunch of chiselers and wage cheats.

        As soon as people could get away with cheating, they did

        A great example, the habit southern states had of arresting vagrants and selling them to mines.

        Throw in migration from people that were either failures or assholes who could not get along at home and you have a recipe for a population that is far from moral

        The only reason we could manage to get by is that we had so much land and even than things got worse in many ways from industrialization on

        We managed to hack the system from roughly Roosevelt to Internet by massive growth in the State but that was not the bulk of our history and where we are now is the natural outcome of where we started from

        • Just a reminder. Sinclair’s The Jungle was activist fiction — a novel. Quite literally. It’s been mythologized to death by the left, but most of what was presented in the book was fiction — unsubstantiated scaremongering and propaganda — even at the time.

          • I’m aware of that but we have tons of real life examples of places just as awful. We have photos galore in fact and I’ve met plenty of people maimed in industrial accidents in the 20th century

            Farming wasn’t much better at times but on the whole the past was awful in the physical realm at least

            Hell modern shops require regulation to stay clean and while they are much better now, it wasn’t this way in the past

            And yes there is quite a lot of historical notes from butchers and the like claiming Sinclair was a muckraking pile of crap

            Now doubt some maybe most butchers were clean and humane but it only takes a few and frankly given the utter reluctance of ag to change and the fact it would cost them money to do so I’m inclined to trust Sinclair to a degree.

            In fact we had a particularly stubborn farmer arrested a few years ago here in California for putting fell cows into the meat supply

            He’d been treated with kid gloves for years but would not stop this practice

            He got a few years IIRC but to my way of thinking ought to have been hanged for attempted mass poisoning.

            Its basically the poison M&M problem. A bowl of 100 M&M’s are on your table 3 will make you sick, 1 might kill. Do you ant some M&M’s ?

            I don’t like the extra costs and hassles but I like melamine in my milk less , c.f China so you put up with regulation and get a much safer if slightly more expensive world

            And yes there are plenty of abuses that need fixing. The core mechanism, State makes food safer works

          • And now the same system is used to shut down kids’ lemonade stands, protect established restaurants with anti-competitive regulations and keep dairy farms from selling fresh raw milk to willing customers. Everything the government does starts with good intentions and morphs into a disaster, because people.

          • There is a huge difference between needing to trim regulations back and “the state can do no good”

            Frankly the latter is bullshit and I trust the government far more than industry on food safety and in fact in a crap ton of other areas.

            It does need reform and there are abuses , lemonade stands and the like but there are reasons to protect restaurants from predation and that without testing raw milk can be dangerous and spread TB if sold by irresponsible vendors

          • The local slaughterhouse we used to use when I was a kid was driven out of business by some regulation. The meat from there was fine. Most people took their own beef there. I’m certain the regulation that put them out of business was put in place by lobbyists for big meat packers who didn’t want to have to compete with small locally owned family businesses.

            In a situation like this regulation has become a necessary thing. Everyone had trust in this local business. Now we buy meats at Sam’s Club and have no idea who packed it, or where. Sure. Regulate the hell out of them. Safer. It’s like a self fulfilling prophecy.

            I’d be all for a law that exempts any small business from complying with any new regulation if it could provide evidence that the regulation isn’t needed in that particular instance.

            If it ain’t broke, don’t drive it iut of business.

            And fuck Sinclair.

          • Not only do you not know where you meat comes from, but it has been radiated BY GOV’T DECREE. There’s gov’t for you.

      • Culture matters.

        The Brits imposed their legal and political traditions in all the nations they once ruled in Africa and the Middle East.
        As soon as they left, it all went to hell in those nations; but not so in Australia, NZ, Canada and to a large extent, the USA.

        Just another demonstration that one cannot impose any form of government or legal system upon a people whose cultural traditions are incompatible with and/or have nothing in common with the cultural traditions of those imposing a legal and govt. system.

        The question is not why former British colonies think nothing of murdering their political enemies and abusing/ignoring a political / legal system given to them, but why murdering your political enemy does not enter at all into the mind of British citizens ( not yet, anyway).
        IMHO, it’s because culturally this idea is so abhorrent, it is not even on the radar screen of the average UK citizen (or most folks of European stock).

        It is NOT the form of government that ultimately determines how people will act, but the cultural traditions of the people that determines if a form of govt. will endure and if it will be more or less successful.

        If George Washington had been made King , he and the USA would have done just fine during his reign; culturally he and the citizens at the time had, more or less, the same concepts of how and to what extent a free people should be regulated and what a government should, or not, do.

        At least the framers of the Constitution – yep, all aristocrats – realized that people succumb easily to greed, pursuit of power and wealth. So they formed a federalist system of govt. that gave the states the ability to govern themselves and limited the powers of the Federal Govt.

        Of course this all went to hell as a result of the Civil War (which, for all intents and purposes removed the option of a state to secede, REGARDLESS of how tyrannical the Federal govt. becomes), and the implementation of the Federal Income Tax (it is THIS that doomed the USA to be governed by a massive unaccountable, unelected, govt. bureaucracy paid for by the citizenry and provided the majority of the $$$ for the USA, much to the detriment of the citizenry, to become the world’s policeman. ).

        There really are no solutions to the problems of society and governance; only trade offs.
        It is the self anointed elites , in their arrogance and contempt for ordinary folks, that believe that all society need do is adhere to their prescriptions to solve society’s problems. They clearly believe that today’s problems are extant because society has not yet applied the superior brain power and intellect of these self anointed elites.

        If a culture falls apart, so will any representative form of government; for the people will no longer respect the legal and governmental institutions that rule them and the notion of compromise – essential in representative govt. – disappears.
        We see this today in the USA; the democrats and “establishment” dumpublicans and the Quisling 5th columnists of the deep state, are actively and energetically attempting to depose a duly elected president; the results of free elections be damned.

        And as a culture disintegrates, history shows that a despotic government and/or anarchy will prevail.

        This cultural disintegration is accelerated and encouraged here in the USA by the admittance of millions of people from 3rd world shit holes who WILL bring with them their antisocial, dysfunctional social pathologies and who are encouraged to maintain their social mores and to NOT assimilate into society in general.
        The facility with which these “immigrants” receive welfare benefits will allow them NEVER to assimilate.

        This Balkanization policy is an intentional and purposeful strategy of American born , anti-American leftists, supported by globalist European elites, whose goal is the destruction of our Constitutional republic.
        Make no mistake about this.

    • Imagine living in Colorado in 1884. How little impact on your life did the Presidential election have? (Cleveland beat James Blaine) Federalism and small government was nice while it lasted.

      • Blaine! Blaine! James G. Blaine! The continental liar from the state of Maine!

        Ma, Ma? Where’s my pa? Gone to the white house ha ha ha!

        Rum, romanism and rebellion!

      • You also had basically no technology and no options otherwise other than maybe factory hell, the Satanic Mills of industry of which we have pictures galore

        Truth is you could other than taxes live close to this way now if you wanted but not that many people are lining up for subsistence farming in West Texas

        Hell we can’t get people to live in Wyoming

        And for a great many Americans 1860 sure mattered a lot, a lot of Irish were enslaved, err drafted by Lincoln to fight his war i soon after

        Fact is modernity is expensive and requires a lot of inputs and a bigger State. As complexity increases , so does the growth of government and its not surprise that 40% of GDP is government

        I don’t blame anyone for wanting less mind you but you can’t have it both ways . As soon as someone invents something like CRISPR , you’ve just grown the government

        So does automation.

        • CO in 1880? You could be a miner, a rancher, farmer, work on a railroad, open a bar, hotel, store, learn a trade…

    • This is (a) a romanticization of the past and (b) a denial of reality. All you’re saying is “I want to live in a society that is perfect for me”. It’s no better than the utopian nonsense of progressives and libertarians.

      The reality is that the “tripartite republic” was always unstable. It was effective for a few generations at concentrating power in the hands of the founders, after which it rapidly degenerated into factionalism, civil war, spoils systems, judicial supremacy, etc.

      “Checks and balances” are a fantasy. They make things worse, not better. Heritage America was great *because* of the people in charge and *in spite of* the terrible system, not the other way around.

      • If I wanted a society that was “perfect for me” I would want to be the supreme ruler or even have it ruled by people who agree with me on inportant things. I just want a limited government that would have a difficult time unjustly punishing me.

        My father lived under such a society. He was not fearful of what he said. Money was tight with three kids, his wife put on lots of weight which must have pained him, but he sure as hell did not fear his own government.

    • They would have had to convince 32 of your neighbors. You left out the Grand Jury.

    • In some eastern philosophies, your intent to gain Nirvana results in your subconscious unthinkingly accepting the emptiness of all things, often expressed like this:

      “when ‘you’ realize you are nothing, you become everything”.

      Sounds suspiciously like a liberal bobblehead’s acceptance on insufficient evidence, of every crazy belief of the group, in the face of observable reality.

      Normies are not exempt, an example could be how their need for social cohesion throws them on the fire of acceptance of insane ideas that destroy their own tribe.

      Interesting part is it’s up to the observer/culture to determine the value if any, in either of these propositions.

  23. Doing good is acting in the right way when there is nobody around to enforce it.

    In my little world, I drive through a number of traffic lights on the way to work and back again. People stop on the red. Why? Perhaps so they don’t get t-boned by the cross traffic. But mostly, IMO, because it is the right and proper thing to do.

    Lately, many people have decided to drive through a red light, as long as the driver in front of him is doing the same thing. Basically an “up yours, I’ve got someplace to go” attitude. It is actually much bigger than that. It is a breakdown in doing the right thing. It is “every man for himself”. So be it. But when we are all living in caves and scrounging for our dinner, look to where it all started. It all started when people decided to screw their fellow man for their own selfish benefit. I am not arguing for socialism. I am arguing for a culture in which the norm is doing the right thing, because it is the right thing to do. Western white culture is one of the few that has ever incorporated “doing the right thing” at its core. It is what we are losing, and when it is gone, we will never get it back. It is a fundamental part of the people, and it cannot be legislated or structured from the outside. Your culture either has it or it doesn’t.

    • Lately, many people have decided to drive through a red light, as long as the driver in front of him is doing the same thing. Basically an “up yours, I’ve got someplace to go” attitude. It is actually much bigger than that. It is a breakdown in doing the right thing. It is “every man for himself”.

      I have doubts about this analysis. Traffic lights are arbitrary. Unlike stop signs, they deny the ability of the individual to exercise discretion. At a stop sign, you stop only long enough to make sure it’s safe to proceed. At a stop light, you can be sitting there at an empty intersection, knowing to the bottom of your soul that you can safely proceed through the intersection, but if you do, and there’s a traffic cam you didn’t know about or a cop lurking behind a nearby obstruction, you’re busted.

      It’s not all “up yours.” Sometimes it’s just people realizing that arbitrary rules are arbitrary. This is happening more often as people lose trust and respect for systems of authority. In old, high trust America, people sat at stop lights no matter what because it was part of “setting a good example” and “being a good citizen,” but as people realize that the authorities are arbitrary, kind of stupid, and not at all concerned with the actual well-being of the people they govern, it’s natural that people start treating authority and its symbols with less respect.

      This isn’t a bad thing, when that authority absolutely does not deserve our respect. It’s part of waking up.

      • Vizzini, I see your point, but these are not empty intersections, there are tons of cars everywhere in all directions. And screwing the arbitrary authorities is fine, but you are actually screwing your fellow travelers on this one. The authorities cannot be bothered and couldn’t care less.

        If you want to screw authority in a way that makes them hurt, don’t pay your taxes or go buy unregistered guns. But observing traffic lights, picking up trash, and treating the people around you with a modicum of respect, even if they are flaming idiots (not you, I’m just sayin’), are hallmarks of our white western culture. Little things add up to big things.

        • I see your point as well. Here in Ohio I don’t see that behavior yet — ignoring traffic signals in busy intersections. That’s definitely different than what I was talking about.

          • That traffic light thing started in L.A. years ago. I caused a six car pileup behind me, a long time ago, by stopping on a yellow in L.A. Now it has worked its way to San Diego, dammit. We pride ourselves on being better than L.A. (and they can choke on the choking Chargers!).

          • It makes sense. That’s the behavior you see in third-world countries, as California is becoming. I’ve spent a good amount of time in Brazil where all traffic signals and road signs are considered “suggestions.”

            I guess it’s going to get worse before it gets better. And it probably has to.

          • The first time I remember seeing shopping carts left to wander on their own in a parking lot was in Los Angeles (~1999). It shocked me a bit, the utter…shittiness of it, the “fuck you” of leaving a cart to dent or ding or just prevent the next guy from getting properly into a parking space. By the time I’d moved back to the South a few years later, it was happening there too, albeit not quite as ubiquitously. Now…

          • Aldi has solved that problem. It cost you a quarter to get a cart, you get it back when it’s returned.

    • Yeah, I agree. It is less about thee system, than the population. I view the world as a battle between chaos and order. Puppies, toddlers, and most blacks are on the side of chaos. Tight-ass white men and to a lesser extent white women side with order. I can hardly walk past a piece of refuse without picking it up and throwing it away! A loose dresser knob would be intolerable. I will admit that i am lazy about changing my house filters. Will stop now as i have begun to ramble.

    • I see a LOT of this in the younger generation. Little kids wearing t-shirts proclaiming how much you suck. Middle-finger bumper stickers on trucks. The nasty, aggressive, in-your-face posts on their social media feeds (e.g. instead of “look at this great play,” it’s “watch LeBron James absolutely fuck this guy up!!!”). Everywhere “pride” in being dysfunctional. It’s bad out there now.

      • You can’t really blame them for that. The US has no actual functional society. Its just people living off the social capital of of previous generations.

        A rootless people will not prosper and won’t reproduce itself after a certain point. The Ashkenazim and other Jews who have always been nomadic are no exception. Israel grows, American Jews have barren

        The fix though will mean radical changes , fundamentally people will have to be able to be born live raise a family and die in one place without constant change and among their own kind to prosper

        People won’t be able to be farmed out like livestock, human resources if you prefer and corporation will have to lose a lot of political power and come to serve the common good. This does not mean Communism here, there is nothing wrong with profits but it does mean populism, economic nationalism distributism, and a host of other isms, none of which are Libertarianism

        Smaller scale. local enterprise in homogeneous communities looks an awful lot like collapse to the people in charge and these people would rather create hell than allow change

        This is why goals cannot be achieved by any form of democracy or republic however do to the inherent limitations of the systems so a collapse into something worse is probably inevitable

        On a related topic the Malthusian Greens were quite correct, there are far too many people on the planet for the ecology and more importantly the social capital to sustain

        This is correcting, nearly every group part of the industrialized world is below replacement and given enough time, the population will decline. The only thing that is slowing it is immigration pushed he rapacious nature of global corporations or the desperate nature of others

        The later I can have some sympathy for, no one wants to be Toys R Us and end up destroyed

        They’ve mostly run out of people they can import who can sustain it , MENA people won’t cut it though so expect them to abuse, exploit and make human lives miserable to either the go broke or are shot dead by the Commies , Populists or some other group

        • “Smaller scale. local enterprise in homogeneous communities looks an awful lot like collapse to the people in charge and these people would rather create hell than allow change”

          Reproduction is the ultimate form of human expression. We comment on the world around us with our reproductive habits. If the world is a great place we have lots of kids, and if there is a great deal of uncertainty about the future we do so as well. When we are a little to comfortable about how we will be taken care of in old age, we decline to reproduce. If we think fun is more important than family, we do the same.

          And society lives or dies, not so much because of our voting habits as our breeding habits. Urban demographers have known this basically forever.

    • In my suburb there’s a stop sign every short block. I’m done with them. If there’s no traffic I’ll slow down a bit so as not to completely defile the concept of law, but I never stop. Retired white people look at me like I have a giant F**K YOU painted on my car. They shoot a look of disgust and outrage. Some will throw their palms in the air. I return the gestures while mouthing “what!?”, turning their censure back on themselves.

      A constant rhythm of stop & go, stop & go, is bad for mental health, bad for the environment, bad for your wallet, and bad for your brakes. When you go to Europe you don’t see traffic signs everywhere. And not nearly the number of stop signs. They must think we’re a bunch of car riding infants who’ve got to be signed what to do every 20 yards.

      We could at least come up with a variant on the current absolutist stop sign. Maybe one that says, “STOP for Traffic”. Or “Stop if Traffic”. Or just replace half of them with yield signs.

      • Visiting family last weekend there’s a new stop sign halfway down a country road. Was already a stop sign at the end of the other road, now it’s 3-way for no particular reason other than to please the new home owners and give the cops an excuse to ticket people.

        My mother looked around for cops then drove right through it when we went out.

      • Here in Berkeley/Oakland we have a number of major thoroughfares with poorly timed traffic signals. I.e., your light turns green and then the one at the next block turns red. I’ve been known to run those red lights when safe to do so, to make the next intersection before that one turns red.

      • The Europeans have long assumed a homogeneous and competent populace with their public safety rules. Besides the (now waning) ethnic homogeneity, it has always been more difficult to get a drivers license and more expensive to own a car in Europe. So the average driver in Europe was traditionally more intelligent and responsible than his American counterpart.

        The US on the other hand lets anyone with a pulse drive, and imposes far less taxes and fees on automobiles. We have also been “diverse” for longer than Europe. Hence the “dumb” stop signs because otherwise weed smoking dindus, illiterate moslem women, etc. will crash.

        I agree that America has many overly cautious safety rules. I don’t agree that breaking them is a good idea. It is especially bad to do it in front of others, because it erodes law and order.

  24. What comes next is our Technocratic Neo-feudal overlords shove us all into sensory pods to live in the matrix. Everyone gets what they want, good and hard.

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