Russell Kirk

The habit of rewriting history to fit current narratives is generally associated with the far-Left, but the so-called conservatives do their share of it as well. The early history of Buckley conservatism, for example, has been deliberately forgotten. More important, the people associated with the alternatives to Buckley’s individualistic brand of conservatism have been forgotten. The current narrative says the only alternative to coercive collectivism was the lonely individualism of Bill Buckley.

As a result, Russell Kirk gets little mention from modern conservatives. He has been written out of the history of their movement, in the same way Stalin would have former allies airbrushed out of photographs. He was never purged from the movement, like the paleocons, but he has largely been forgotten. No one in the National Review scene bothers to reexamine the rivalry between Frank Meyer and Russell Kirk, as to do so would raise uncomfortable questions about their cult leader, Bill Buckley.

It is a funny thing about Buckley conservatism. The truly brilliant people associated with the movement were eventually purged or abandoned. Joe Sobran, Sam Francis and Pat Buchanan are examples of men purged from the movement, because they dared challenge the cult of Bill Buckley. Kirk, on the other hand, was forgotten, a bad reminder of what should have been. There’s at least one good book on the people Buckley finked on during his long career as leader of the conservative movement.

How relevant Russell Kirk is to our current age is debatable. In fact, European conservatism in general may have little salience in the demographic age. The defense of the Occident against the demographic tsunami is not served by a steadfast refusal to consider innovation or a rethinking of the current order. Not only has too much been lost for conservatism to make sense, the challenges we face are entirely different from anything imagined in the past by conservative thinkers.

Even so, Russell Kirk was a brilliant political observer and analyst. He has a lot to tell us about what went wrong with the Right and the fight against radicalism. Given that the people we associate with the Left will keep trying to pull the roof down on Western civilization until they are stopped, there is a lot to be learned from the failed efforts by the Buckleyites in the last century. The old guys of traditionalism can tell us much about what not to do when forming up an alternative.

The other value in going back and reading the old school conservatives from the last century is that it shows how the old political spectrum was mostly about keeping the interested parties on the Left and Right in charge of the debate. Any challenge to Buckley on the Right was classed as beyond the pale. Any challenge from the Left was classed as a Bolshevism. The bad uncles of the 20th century become the two poles, slowly narrowing the field until we arrived at neo-liberalism.

The old bipolar way of imagining the political universe may have had its uses in various times and places, but it is not a universal. Russell Kirk would have thought fascism just as reckless and immoral as communism. That’s true of the paleocons, who were accused of being fascists as they were hooted out of the movement. The way forward for modern dissidents starts with abandoning the old bipolar political spectrum as a relic of a bygone era. There is no Right and Left, just the great divide.

This week I have the usual variety of items in the now standard format. Spreaker has the full show. I am up on Google Play now, so the Android commies can take me along when out disrespecting the country. I am on iTunes, which means the Apple Nazis can listen to me on their Hitler phones. The anarchists can catch me on iHeart Radio. I am now on Deezer, for our European haters and Stitcher for the weirdos. YouTube also has the full podcast. Of course, there is a download link below.

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This Week’s Show


  • 00:00: Opening (Link) (Link)
  • 02:00: Russell Kirk
  • 07:00: Moral Order
  • 12:00: Custom And Continuity
  • 17:00: Prescription
  • 22:00: Prudence
  • 27:00: Variety
  • 32:00: Imperfectability
  • 37:00: Property
  • 42:00: Community
  • 47:00: Prudent Restraint
  • 52:00: Permanence And Change
  • 57:00: Closing

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161 thoughts on “Russell Kirk

  1. You mention, in the same breath as socialism, that we have experience with libertarianism, and it was all a disaster. I’d be curious as to when that experience was. I can’t recall any libertarian policies from government in my lifetime (and, I’m pretty old).

  2. Great episode Z, really one of my favorites you’ve done. Obviously it’s impossible to predict our future, but better knowing our past can get you in the ballpark.

  3. I think I recall a National Review article, or maybe it was a chapter in Buckley’s book, “In Search of Anti-Semitism”. But the title was “Russel Kirk Stumbles into the Spotlight.” It questioned whether Kirk was an antisemite. I remember it from the wording of the headline itself. Buckley used the passive observant voice. Trying to get across that, “I’m helpless to stop these witch-hunts. Guys just stumble into trouble around here.”

  4. Conservatives may know when to yell “stop,” but they don’t know where they want to go. When your disposition doesn’t provide a destination, why should anyone let you drive?

  5. “Before he was allowed a national platform the modern conservative had to demonstrate that he was a member of the loyal opposition, that on the “sensitive” issues he was of one mind with the liberal himself. No public manifestation of classical conservatism — i.e., no forthright attack against democracy and minority racism — would be tolerated. If the fires of minority illiberalism and minority racism could not be quenched by modest, low decibel appeals for decorum, they were to be left raging. The only notes of dissention permitted the modern conservative were the safe ones. He could be more reverent toward big business, property, patriotism, religion, government decentralization, and law and order. He could be more critical of socialism, Marxism, Castro, overregulation, labor unions, and budget deficits. But the permissible differences were differences in degree, not in kind. On the larger issues, the issues behind the issues, modern liberalism and modern conservatism were often becoming synonymous.”

    – Wilmot Robertson

  6. I’m chewing on it Zman. looks like I’m going to have buy a book on Mr. Russell kirk now. any suggestions ? the one on Eugene V Debs was really interesting. And by the way Zman, you knowing what you know about my situation at home, I have to agree with you on a bridge too far. spot on . and that coming from inside it.

  7. One of Kirk Russel’s best films was The Thing. Directed by the great John Carpenter. Easily in my top 20 favorites of ANY genre. Though I guess you could call it sci-fi, psychological-suspense. It can be viewed from our political angle as well. Along with some relation to the current Covid scare.

    • You’re such a kidder. Russell Kirk and Kurt Russell.

      How’s a bar-crawling extrovert like you holding up during the lockdown?

      • It’s been pretty tough LineIn. A few weeks back, at the start of the lockdown, there were still a few independently owned bars/pubs that would stay open on the down-low. They’d turn off the “open” sign and dim the lights. Cops and non-regular customers would assume they were closed and just keep driving. But a few of the regulars knew the deal. We also liked helping the owners and bartenders we’ve known for years, to keep earning a living.

        That lasted about 2 weeks. Then I assume either the owners got scared for legal reasons, or they just weren’t making enough money to cover costs. At one place, word spread that it was still covertly open, so everyone started going there. Thus calling too much attention to it. And so it shut down too.

        There was another bar where this one customer would leave a $150 tip every time he’d come in during the lockdown. He’d only have a few beers and a burrito. He looked and spoke working-class, i.e. didn’t seem like he had the money to do that. Many places I go to are middle class and lower-middle. Every patron that I’d talk to thought this was bullshit. Well, all the men.
        The women stopped showing up.

        I used to drink at a posh college village one town over. Claremont Colleges. Near the start of this I’d meant start frequenting those places again to get the tone of their clientele on the crisis. They’d be more articulate on this thing than the guys at the sports bars. But surely more wrong.

        Anyway, yeah, it’s rough not going out. You get that crawling out of your skin nervousness. If the gyms were open that’d be really helpful in the evenings right now.

        Still, I’d take my solitude over being with a family all day and night. I seriously don’t know how people cope with living with other people all the time.

  8. One of the most incisive ‘casts yet. Listening, I was particularly struck by how far we have devolved in the last several decades without realizing it.

    That we even have to argue for the right of free association, much less become activists in the hope of regaining it, is incredible. Most of us don’t even realize we have lost the right. But, of course we have lost it, insidiously and by slow degrees. Now, if you say you want to associate with people similar to yourself culturally and ethnically, you are instantly accused of being racist. (Well, if you happen to be white anyway. Nothing racist about wanting to associate with, say, Purples, if you are a Purple, at least according to current mainstream thinking.) Wow — a mini-red-pill moment right there.

    Similarly, the notion of community coming before economics — something that I used to think of as an idea Democrats supported — now, gone with the wind of progress, tossed out by both “conservatives” and “progressives.” With the appalling results we see all around us.

    It is interesting, if sad, to look back and consider how we arrived at the current sorry state of affairs. Hopefully, as Z-man points out, we can also learn to avoid the mistakes of the past when moving forwards. But damn, we have a long, long road before us, or so it seems to me.

  9. From memory (yesterday morning). One of your criticisms was the Kirkean regard for old things (books, men, ideas) where you mentioned commies are old things. I think it’s important to remember that Kirkeans hold in high regard things that are old AND ubiquitous or near ubiquitous. Conservativism, properly understood, is civilizationally Darwinian in it’s understanding e.g. goofy novelties get selected against and those societies die. Old, ubiquitous ideas/practices (traditional marriage, family, male dominance, not being democided) have necessary survival value.

  10. I’ll reread and re-listen to Z Man’s Russel Kirk critique, but I initially wonder if it is a bit Monday morning quarterbacked. I just wonder, even if someone of the Zman’s perspicacious mind lived alongside Kirk, in his time, would not he think of Kirk as the exact prescription for the creeping civil rights liberalism that was creeping in? And perhaps the Zman’s prescription today is not nearly radical enough, as he seems to imply that Kirk’s wasn’t. What if some new dissident, ten years from now, after, God forbid, a Biden or AOC wins control, points back and says, “the Z Man had some scintillating observations, but his views not only never would have been influential enough, they weren’t nearly what was needed to prevent us from living in the globohomo hell we now are dealing with”. I appreciate you very much, Z. I’ll contribute as soon as I can, so don’t get me wrong.

  11. Russell Kirk was one of the best writers of supernatural fiction of the 20th Century. Few know this.

  12. Z man would have seen eye to eye with Disraeli on a lot of things. He used to write novels when he wasn’t running the UK. Integralism is the theme of “Lothair.” He writes at length about how some of the most important players in history are ignored or forgotten in “Sybil.”

  13. “May 11, 2019: suddenly took down my blog after 10 years of continuous operation. There was no warning or advance notice of any kind.”

    “July 17, 2019: My blog is up and running again! The content now resides on a server independent of Click on the blog link articles below.”

    The above happened to Jon Rappoport who has been an independent journalist for 30 years. I guess he pissed off some SJW over at wordpress and they just dropped him without a word.

    I think we should all be mindful that those of us on this side of the great divide (on the far right as I call it) have a bull’s eye on our back.

  14. I’m glad you mentioned TRS. I’ve enjoyed the TDS content for some time. Humorous and often insightful, mostly Enoch. Maybe it was post-Charlottesville when they began the relentless boomer hate. Now it’s a feature of every podcast.

    That along with their doomsday corona virus act and their pleas to “get the bag” are so moronic that I can’t listen any longer. God help them in the economy ahead.

    • A million years ago Derbyshire called it the Jew Thing. Some people, when exposed to the topic, go crazy with it. The guy who ran against Paul Ryan in Wisconsin is the best example. He was a normie-con conservative, read McDonald’s book, then turned into a raving anti-Semite.

      Greg Johnson has said that McDonald’s book should have some sort of special lock on it, where you need a certain IQ and temperament to read it. For everyone else it is blank pages or random nonsense. I don’t know for sure, but I suspect McDonald would agree with Johnson. McDonald did not write his book to be the bible for antisemitic rage heads. It is serious scholarship intended to be taken seriously.

      • The Wisconsin guy is Paul Nehlen. He also was the guy who doxxed Ricky Vaughn, I believe. Another guy who became obsessed with the JQ was Patrick Little. He ran for office in California, lost, then produced a series of YouTube videos where he travelled the country talking to people in a “man on the street” style educating them about the tribe. In both cases, Nehlen and Little seemed to be normal businessmen who suddenly had life changing moments from reading MacDonald’s book.

        • It really is incredible. People who get into various conspiracy theories tend to display other qualities that are consistent with that sort of thinking. When Uncle Bob suddenly came down with a case of 9/11 Truth, no one was surprised because he thought the phone company killed Kennedy. The over-the-top antisemitism just comes on like a virus causing otherwise normal people to obsess about the Jews.

          • You may criticize certain people for repeatedly emphasizing a certain issue, but that doesn’t mean it is not one of our top two issues to contend with.

  15. OT- and iSteve are gone as we knew them.

    The site proprietor himself has spent the better part of the afternoon and evening ranting about how he is going to shut down commenters that don’t buy into the CoronaHoax.

    Meanwhile, a Stanford team has literally determined that, it’s just the flu, bro:

    Antibody research indicates coronavirus may be far more widespread than known

    • Ron Karen Unz lost the argument and cannot take that blow to his “brilliant” intellectual mind
      He was one of those who had been predicting million of deaths
      That is why for the first time he is massively banning people

      • Ron has gone bonkers? I can’t say I’m surprised. The virus has been hard on the sperg community. In the fullness of time, we’ll call this the sperg-flu.

  16. An economic system can’t ensure the preservation of a culture but a bad economic system can undermine a good culture. How do you put limits on credit? Enough credit-based money from the outside will buy out and overwhelm a good community. Ask the oil company employees who lost their pensions after a T. Boone Pickens buyout.

  17. >”The defense of the Occident against the demographic tsunami is not served by a steadfast refusal to consider innovation or a rethinking of the current order. Not only has too much been lost for conservatism to make sense…”

    I know that the left prattles on endlessly about the inevitability of the victory of their ideas, but that’s no excuse for us to believe it. “Those ideas are from the past, and you can’t turn back the clock” is a nonsensical statement. Worse, it’s a dangerous one – if you accept your enemy’s frame, then you’ve already lost. The bottom line is that what you say is true only if we continue with our irrational attachment to mass democracy. At some point – and it won’t be long – whites will be faced with a choice: democracy or survival. You can’t have both. The sooner we all get used to that idea, the better it will be for all of us.

    Speaking of ideologies that claimed to be historically inevitable, that’s what the Communists always used to say, too. But we’ve now had 20 years of Mr. Putin gradually returning Russia to normal. Is it a slow process? Do many problems remain? And will they for years to come? Of course. But this attitude that if we don’t get 100% of what we want immediately, we’ll just give up, is the kind of blackpill nonsense that has turned the Dissident Right into a bad joke of late. It is, as Scott Adams puts it, Loserthink.

    • Our host is partially correct. Its no Democracy or the trappings that cause the problems we face but modernity itself.

      In terms of a successful society the total fertility rate among natives is all that counts long term.

      Russia is no more fertile than any other developed or sufficiently developed nation, somewhere between 1.6 and 1.8 depending on the ethnic group.

      Better than the 90’s where it was 1.4 but is still well below replacement and the population remains in decline.

      Trying that “one weird trick” to roll the clock back to Christianity and have any aspect of modernity has been proven completely ineffective at getting replacement or above fertility in every single nation it been tried. Making Jesus Poland’s King is not going to make babies.

      And note an outright theocracy in Islamic Iran couldn’t pull this off either. It is as much a useless idea as Communism.

      Now in the long fullness of time when the goes fully post industrial , most people will die or have died off and the population will reach equilibrium or maybe very slow growth. You’ll have a lot more of a religious population though it may well be folk religions in Europe or Islam or who knows what else.

      Until than, it appears that modernity has an inherent carrying capacity and that we have reached it.

      The best thing we can do is get the globalists, cheap labor people and other weirdos out of power and replace them with nativists , natalist types . This might, maybe get the TFR up a notch or two. With a great expense and so luck, even to replacement.

      Otherwise no dice and even a Dissident Right takeover does not guarantee results

  18. The Left/Right political axis is in hospice. We have entered a multi-axial political world with technocracy vs populism and liberalism vs racial nationalism as two of the most important polarities.

  19. Buckley conservatism was the early prototype for neoconservatism. Liberalism was already completely dominant by the time Buckley cobbled together libertarianism and classical liberalism to redefine “conservatism.” The Republican Party was never really conservative, but rather an remnant of the late nineteenth century postbellum political status quo. To find an authentic conservative in American politics, one must look south, not north. An example of a conspicuously forgotten mid-twentieth century conservative was Richard Weaver, whose book “Ideas Have Consequences”, remains worth reading today. Conservatism, if that term is even meaningful at this point in time, awaits a restoration from an very, very long eclipse in American politics.

    • The US has never really been Conservative in any sense .

      Liberty is an inherently Left Wing idea and no Rightist would have Freedom of Religion, Freedom of Speech, or shudder Elections. Bear arms? Sure. Its good fore society but the rest? Not as much.

      It would be duty, nation, tradition, faith and monarchy all the way down.

      To my eye the founding fathers were flaming liberals at least by 18th century standards. Hell Tom Paine was a borderline Commie (c.f Agrarian Justice)

      This is why we can’t have a Conservative revolution, there was never anything there to Conservative . Its all Left on Left.

      If the DR understands this and just embraces that oh so Liberal idea that they are a change and control movement, they might manage something.

      The ugly truth is that the DR wants to take away freedom in order to have a healthy functional society. Its not Conserving anything.

  20. I don’t mind Buckley’s style. He definitely had one. Celebrity is half performance art, and he crafted a timeless, colorful character. Good for Bill. My problem with him (besides being a garbage person) is how he talked to hear himself talk. A true verbally preening narcissist. Odd that he was known for his debate skills, because (in my opinion) he was actually easily defeated by the better and quicker minds he’d talk with on his Firing Line. Most everyone, really. Chomsky embarrassed him. On a show they hosted together, Vidal got the better of him every 10 seconds. Just played with him like a cat does a mouse. When you listen beyond his cool-lounge-lizard style, he’s really just a laborious bore.

    Not that he couldn’t be suave and witty. I’m sure he was pretty great at cocktail parties. But in a formal setting, no one has time for his slow wind-ups.

    Good example. Check out this clip with Billy Graham. He takes an entire 60 seconds to ask a common, basic religious question. He probably used his verbosity as a debate tactic. Half to show-off, but half to bore his guest to the point they forgot the question.

    A normal interviewer would ask, “So Billy. What do you make of the many thoughtful and honest people who are torn in opposite directions over God allowing bad things to happen?” But instead we have to sit quietly along with Billy as Buckley slowly unfurls his peacock feathers.

    From 4:27 to 5:27.

    • I remember that nonsense.

      Useful public debate needs to have systems in place that sanction debating B.S and make people get down to brass tacks.

      Of course getting twats like Buckley to show up for such things never works.

  21. Decades back when I was young, dumb and full of being a Reagan Republican I’d read National Review and I can’t remember there ever being an actual Conservative article. It was so taken over by the country club types that room for idea beyond “Communistism Bad.” and “Wealth Concentration Good.”

    It hasn’t changed very much though back in the day today’s content would be though pretty left wing on social issues.

    This is of course because the GOPe hates the lower classes every bit as much as the Democrats do only without the decency to pay them off or to pretend their concerns matter.

    The closest to an actual print Conservative magazine would be the John Birch’ers New American.

    I think the ultimate paradox of the modern US is that for anything to be fixed Americans need a strong race and class consciousness, chemo for the social cancer basically but the way the nation is now, it may well not survive that.

  22. “… Joe Sobran, Sam Francis and Pat Buchanan are examples of men purged from the movement”

    In many ways, these men were the movement. They all had a lot in common with the OLD RIGHT of the time between the world wars.

    The real right believed in low taxes, no welfare, very little emigration, defend the family, crush the criminal thugs and America First. That is the best I can do in one sentence. The old right was not the right of that queer Buckley. He was evil.

    By the way, is not the right vs. left almost the same thing as Z’s “the great divide”?

    • Mark: ” . . . is not the right vs. left almost the same thing as Z’s ‘the great divide'”? NO. NO. NO. They are not the same thing in any way, shape, or form. I’ve been reading here for years and every day Zman cranks out another brilliant post explaining how all the old paradigms (left vs. right, socialist vs. capitalist, etc.) are fatally flawed because they don’t start from the bedrock issue of human genetic differences, and every day I read comment after comment that makes me think everyone read a different essay than I did.

      Stop proceeding from all your old assumptions. They led us here. They don’t work. And your personal family circumstances cannot be projected on society at large. Any nation and/or political system that is not founded on a true nation, an extended genetic family, sharing the same race and culture, will fail. Period. Politics, economics, all of that comes later. Taxes, welfare, any of the old conservative bugaboos, become totally different issues when they applied within a natos, not a fleabag globalist motel with Whites cleaning the grounds and begging for scraps.

      • People get worked up about there not being an actual Left and Right. No doubt theoretically true. But we still have to get our simple thoughts across…the conversational gist. And the gist is, “Left” is a disease. “Right” is not yet a full-blown case of the Left.

      • 3g,

        You lost me there. You see my “far right” has always been about my nation. And a nation is a community of people who share a common language, culture, values, traditions, ethnicity, descent, and history.

        I don’t want to be around Germans for example even though they are white. I will join with them as allies until my side wins, but then I don’t care to associate with them.

        So how is my idea of left vs. right different than the two sides of a great divide? I see two sides in both ways of saying it. I must still be missing something.

    • BTW one of Z’s best and most entertaining podcasts was on the Paleocons. From about 2 years ago. Worth searching for. Make it special. Wait till evening. Pour yourself a cocktail. A cigar maybe. Your favorite leather recliner. And let your buddy Z tell ya ’bout the old guys. There will be “fuckin’ aye’s” and chuckles.

      • Frip, my good man; I supported the Palecons back in the day. I did not mind when people called me that but preferred just “Paleo”. For a while there I thought we might get Pat B. nominated to run in the general election.

        My what great debates would have happened!

  23. In my opinion the main problem with Socialism is it leads to weak people. And once Swedes decided they had became a humanitarian ‘superpower’, disaster in some form was inevitable. It just so happened diversity is the en vogue issue right now, so that’s the form of their destruction they chose.

  24. The conservatives, neocons and libertarians failed because they could not see what was actually happening. The progressive left took over all of our institutions. Even the churches are absolutely infected by progressive leftism.

    As they were writing books, magazines and letters to the editor, the left was taking over k-12 and the universities, which prepares people for leadership in the world. The ethos of the university spreads into larger society because the leaders of that larger society must pass through them. Because teaching itself requires passing through the universities, the schools became even more leftist even k-12. They also took over the Bar. Our entire legal system is based on progressivism now and if you are not progressive, you cannot practice law.

    As a result, leftism is not just our politics, but our way of life. Everything now revolves around progressivism. People who write fiction and even songs have been created by this progressive machine. Even commercials are now loaded with progressivism. If progressivism sells products, what does that say about the people?

    For what has been done to the minds of our people, we may as well be satanists Medieval Europe. Everything we think is absolutely repulsive to most people. They don’t even know why they are repulsed, they just are. We must find a way around this. When society was still relatively normal, there was not this instinctive revulsion at what the progressives were trying to sell. They were introducing new ideas, not older ideas which the public were already inoculated from.
    To my limited mind, the only way I can see of combating this is to concentrate on the very young to whatever degree we can access them. People are capable of holding completely contradictory views. People can navigate the realities of living in a place like Baltimore or Philly while completely believing in the progressive dogma of equality. IOW, reality is no match for the conditioning we have received our entire lives. It seems like no amount of misery can undo the training of our girls in feminist equality. All of the 40 year old cat women endlessly defend their own misery. It’s not just publicly. Even in their own minds they defend it. Most of them turn their misery into more feminist propaganda. It wasn’t feminism that did this to them, it was patriarchy.

    • tars – Excellent rant. You’re spot on; I don’t see any way of undoing the depth of conditioning most people have. To start training the young, though, means not dumping them in daycare from infancy or sending them to public schools and then non-stop activities after. It means reclaiming the family, and given the lame excuses I’ve read, even here, about racially-mixed marriages, progressive wives, kids sent off to brainwash U, etc., I don’t have much hope for people. Would love to be proven wrong.

      • It would take another Great Depression and the destruction of Social Media which has been more destructive than public schooling.

        For any society to have any hope of staying healthy, it has to forbade Social Media period. All the studies pertaining to it show how corrosive it is to developing minds and social skills.

        As for education, even Jordan Peterson has come out and told people not to send their Yet kids to public schools or the universities because of how poisonous they are. Yet this is something the DR refuses to do. They are just as bad as CivNats on this. Then they whine when little Tommy or Becky comes home and lectures them on the virtues of Trannies.

    • If progressivism sells products, what does that say about the people?

      I think that is somewhat backwards – products are used to sell progressivism. Like a bad case of product tying.

    • That’s why I’m doing teaching. I find that, so long as you virtue signal correctly, you can slip in dissident truths or even ask the students to critique some cultmarx ideal under the guise of “critical thinking.”

      I think women are more susceptible to groupthink, and that explains why institutions now prefer to hire women for nearly everything. Cynicism is just not as abundant in their blood. Less principled — or perhaps just less aware — men sense the political orientation of modern femininity, and will slowly adapt their beliefs as a sexual strategy.

      However, my experience is that many of the leftist professors were open to dissent so long as you were a favorite. Female professors especially, if they find a particular student charming.

  25. Regarding William Buckley, here’s a suggestion by “Question Diversity” on a thread in American Renaissance.

    “Buckley’s CIA activities really had nothing to do with Buckley’s conservatism. The purpose of his conservatism was to neuter the American right to eliminate any element that might offend organized activist Jewish interests, so that conservatism (or what would be left of it) could get mainstream visibility.”

    Times of Israel piece:

    • Who determines the definition of status? To a first approximation, the media. Who controls the media?

      • Who controls the media? Journalists and artists, New York and Hollywood. Who controls the journalist and artists? The schools, and the Left controls the schools.

  26. I’m not sure that the Buckley train ride to liberal anarchy could have been avoided. It would have had to be derailed by the baby boomers in their prime. But every ethos of baby boomers was about social atomization. I remember that era from the 80s onward and it was all about finding yourself, jazzercising your ass off, etc.. The climate for preserving community would have been like attempting to grow a tropical garden outdoors in Minneapolis. Certain eras define themselves as the antithesis for what certain groups of people may believe. Today one of our last traditions is the Super Bowl and specifically the half time show. When looking at our remaining traditions, what doesn’t deserve to be mowed down? There’s really nothing left to preserve.

    • As long as the corporations and the state controlled media access and what was shown.It was a foregone conclusion.

      It had nothing to do with Boomers since they did not have their hands on the levers of power to begin with. Just like your generation has no clout.

  27. I would think the more apt description is the acknowledgement that the left has pulled down the roof on western civilization and has not been stopped.

    They are now just stamping on the remaining large fragments left on the ground.

  28. As of 4/17/20, the Xi flu has killed 148 K, which is 37% of the number of flu deaths in an average year. You might have seen the graphs in which no country continues to show an upward trajectory. But don’t worry, it’s still the worst thing that’s ever happened.

    • 37% of normal due to the various shutdowns. A few responsible German scientist nailed down the 19 mortality rate at .37%, flu generally being .1%. For a bad flu season which takes people already in the waiting rom we are all taking a trip to 1933. I am beginning to realize this does not scare the ruling class in the least, perhaps the opposite.

    • I’ll have to wear a banner proclaiming those numbers to all the masked, huddled women in the grocery store, perusing the still half-empty shelves. As well as the numen with their big trucks and stylish masks. Better yet, I’ll just stay home because then I don’t have murderous thoughts.

      • I’ve added a prayer to my daily prayers (which i suck at doing and need to get better at): God, please help me handle the anger and frustration I have at these poor, pitiful, fearful souls.

  29. I don’t know much about Russell Kirk beyond his ten principles, but what stands out to me is his assertion that conservatism is not an ideology but a temperament that opposes reckless change.

    I experienced this in college. In high school, I thought I was a leftist radical. In college, when I encountered real leftist radicals, I had a deep feeling that, although I didn’t know what I was in favor of, I knew that I didn’t want to be ruled by the kind of people who are leftist radicals.

    • I had a similar experience in my youth. I dated a rich girl who would have her smart friends over to talk politics and philosophy. At some point, I mocked some goofy sentiment popular with them and was treated like I had loudly broke wind. I realized the smart set was never going to be for me.

    • CS Lewis, George Orwell (and many others) talk about this experience, the person that can’t (or doesn’t) love individual people, but loves The People.

      • Wealthy liberals will blubber about the poor and the oppressed and make a great show of their charitable donations and social justice endeavors, but when it comes to their economic bottom line ey’re ruthless.

        They love humanity in the abstract, but don’t care about people in particular.

        Helping the poor and oppressed is also a great excuse for power over others.

        • There was a teacher in the middle east that got nailed to a tree for arguing against people who did those very things.

          • Not a new phenomenon. The difference is that 2000 years ago, moral grandstanding involved phony religious piety and now it’s a phony liberal piety. Liberalism is a pseudo-religion.

  30. What the last 60 years have, or should have, taught us is that controlling the media and public education is absolutely necessary. This was especially true of TV. As soon as TV really started getting into every home, the (((people))) controlling the programming immediately started moralizing and did it very well. They targeted every age group, but especially kids. Basically every kid born after the 2nd world war has been propagandized with egalitarian nonsense since they were young enough to believe in the tooth fairy. Our society allowed things like Sesame Street that targeted TODDLERS! Then, after all that priming of the young brain, we get sent to a public school filled with SJWs who incorporate all of the equality nonsense into young heads.

    Politics is never, ever going to undo this stuff. We have been failing for 60 years or more while the society has moved ever leftwards. We have to get to the kids, or at least keep them away from the kids. Even dissidents with children expose them to the propaganda. By the time a kid is 18 years old, they have been fed a steady diet of egalitarian nonsense and been heavily conditioned to be repulsed and even angered at anyone espousing non-egalitarian sentiments.

    If politics is the art of the possible, we need to live in a world where anti-egaliatarianism is even theoretically possible.

    • I dunno how much of this is egalitarianism, because I think most young people aspire to have more money and know the difference between someone who is rich or poor, and the desirability of wealth over poverty. It is hard to put my finger on what exact the problem is. It’s not like young people are totally oblivious. It’s more like the truth is being suppressed.

      • On the individual level, grey, I may want to be rich, but on the macro level, if my group is rich, I feel guilty. Me ok, my group bad. That is what indoctrination does to a person. May have something with how the white brain is wired that makes it susceptible to such convoluted thinking, and makes it incapable of having pride in itself.

    • “As soon as TV really started getting into every home”

      When I was but a small boy in TN. the baptist preachers who rail from the pulpit that “where you see the antenna of a TV you saw the horns of the Devil”. They were ridiculed of course, but looks like they were right, no?

      And those of us on the far right always knew that we were losing as the schools became indoctrination centers. But it could never have gone any other way — command and control is what the State does.

    • I’m tutoring my girlfriend’s brother as we speak. All of his class videos are encouraging him to be a political activist.

  31. Gee, this NeoCon Frank Meyer, with his radical individualism and anti-collective action philosophies, seems like the key figure in the demise of the American conservative movement. I wonder if he arose from a culture that adheres to these principles. I think I’ll look into his background…
    [Spoiler alert: I know all about (((Frank Meyer))) and his (((Fusionism))) philosophy and from whence it arose…and why…and these things are related…]

  32. All I could muster was a “hello” when standing behind Kirk at the cash bar. It was at a victory rally for Buchanan in 92 in one of the primaries. Seemed quite frail then but what a great night. It seemed we were going to really change things, but then…

    • Well, if it makes you feel any better, imagine if he had won and had to stand alone against the GOPe the way Trump has had to try to do.
      The one thing though, about Trump that drives me nuts is why he didn’t reach out to Buchanan and the Paleocons after his victory when he had to start actually running the gov. The Paleocons were pretty sympathetic to Trump and would have been a 100 times better than a lot of the people that have ultimately gotten into Trump’s administration.
      Still, Trump is by far the best President of my lifetime, which goes back to Nixon and probably even way before that. Probably the best since the turn of the 20th century, not that he is up against any serious competition. Reagan is probably the most over-rated politician who ever lived in the US since Lincoln. Lincoln was absolutely awful, not even just for the war.

      • Because he is controlled opposition. Look at the changes everyone is accepting under Trump but ignore his actions. Drain the swamp? he appoints loads of them, refuses to declassify anything about the coup. build the wall ?- nope, restrict immigration – nope large rise. record minority employment announcements, etc etc.

        What you got is house arrest, black prison reform, the establishment of technocratic medical monitoring presence in every community, massive debt increase, constitutional rights trampled on without a stiring from the DOJ. I could go on but it looks a lot like the HRC worst case scenario to me.

        Pretend his name is not Trump and look at the effects. Its sobering. He is not a lone man fighting enemies he is a pro-wrestler gesturing to the crowd.

        Perhaps he is just Buckley with a NY accent?

        • Sometimes I get down on Trump for not doing more, sometimes I think it’s a reflection of how emasculated the right is. Either way, he’s waking people up, and that in itself is a huge achievement.

          I have a friend (not me) who went to a therapist when we were younger. He told me the therapist talked him through his feelings and the events that made him feel that way. Then the therapist asked him what he was going to do about it.

          Good therapist imo.

          • Trump is the Therapist, walking western men through the stages of grief over their loss. The one stage of grief that is missing after Acceptance is Action – what are you going to do now that you’ve accepted what’s happened? (as an aside – not surprising that action is missing from the model, as it was proposed by a woman).

          • The awakening, I believe. The idea that one can change one’s mind, and then act to change one’s own life from there.

            Taking charge of one’s own life.
            Sometimes by letting go of old ways of thinking- this is what the Christians do, for example, and what our host and most of the successful here seem to have done.

            Not easy, not easy at all.
            Hard to put away the passions, or redirect them to the present moment. To get out of one’s own rut, since everything seems stuck.

          • The trouble with awakening is that it’s so easy to fall back asleep, especially when the intoxication of epiphany has waned.

        • Although I used to be skeptical of the controlled opposition argument, I’m starting to see the sense of it. While I do believe Trump has *some* rightist principles, on the whole, I’d say he’s a bullshitter who doesn’t care all that much about the fate of us flats.

          • I agree he’s a BS artist in a lot ways, but there’s a fundamental honesty to the guy (even if honestly corrupt in some sense) that makes him revealing. I wouldn’t do business with the guy if I had something to hide. Definitely a unique character.

          • The only honesty I think he has is the China thing. He has been spouting off about this for a long time and I think they just picked him as a useful conduit with aligned views after they decided they had built China up sufficiently that its now time a Cold War 2.0.

            This time its super scary biological weapons. Duck and cover gone mental.

            The other stuff is pro-wrestling and its obvious he is a willing part of the show and doesn’t care about who is in America as he is a civnat. It could probably be 300m Somalians for all he cares.

  33. I took one look at Buckley years ago and my inner voice said (drolly) – “that’s a weird old queer, closeted or otherwise…” I could not listen to one idea that foppish geek had, he seemed like a phony, an oddball, in on the grift. A performance artist.

    My first impression has not changed over time.

    • William Francis Buckley, Jr. Worked for the CIA so that might’ve colored his persona and mannerisms for you, too. Kind of a mind-bender because there was another William Francis Buckley who also worked for the CIA, and was their station chief in Beirut in the 1980’s, was kidnapped by Hezbollah and subsequently murdered. Apparently no relation I could find. For a long time I thought they were one in the same.

      • I saw an article. Can’t find it at the moment asserting that it was common knowledge among those circles that Buckley had gay escorts lined up when he rocked up for speaking events and was into the sadism side of things. So I am not sure its just a mannerism thing.

    • Same here, when I first saw him in the late 70’s I thought he was a freak, nancy boy, and certainly not the sort of man I’d listen to.

      The guy was just pegging the creep meter. How anyone took him seriously is beyond me,. The fact that a lot of white Americans did says a lot and none of it is any good.

      • Exactly. Just like another roadshow created by ‘those guys’ – the FBI. If you couldn’t pick Hoover out for what he was in seconds – whatever power he held over the powerful – and was held over him – you would have to question what is missing in YOUR internal mechanisms.

        I have actually met, and worked with a handful of FBI “agents” – and I have to say, they were pretty ghey. One, corporate, married with kids “ex FBI” (wore those credentials like a talisman) – a company VP – queer as fuck. Another got divorce raped, moved into his sister’s basement. A young one that was assigned to look into a case for my company – a stupid boy out of the “New York Office” — got nothing done, just wasted my time. And finally, another assigned after 9-11 to local pro sports venues – another laughable child I saw on the job playing cops and robbers.

        • One of my husband’s college friends (half hispanic, military service) applied to the FBI from the Border Patrol. He was turned down . . . but they accepted his sister. ‘Nuff said.

    • I think I first saw Buckley on “Firing Line” on our local PBS affiliate when I was a teen in the 80s. I didn’t really have a political philosophy then and just kept thinking that “conservative” must be some weird code for “upper class queer”. I wonder if this association was the reason for all the odd fake-redneck posturing of people like G.W. Bush and even his dad on occasion.

      • I don’t think WFB was queer or even acted queer. Maybe effete. But really just an eccentric manner, not entirely different than many men of a certain era and status.

        • Effeminate, queer, limp-wristed, snotty, silver spooned…. whichever may apply – one whiff and I never saw this as someone to follow.

          In fact, the so-called “conservative” movement that conserved nothing … and is filled with strange (looking) geeks like Charile Kirk (noting how he embraces homosexuality as “our values”), and his ilk ….. so they seem to be part of the Willing Effing Cuckley tradition in more ways than one.

    • I got the same vibe from Bruce Jenner in 1972. Buckley was off. Jenner was waaay off. Buckley was guessable. What I especially disliked about Buckley’s style was his calculated use of dictionary words to express his level of brilliance, which ruined whatever flow he had. Great men, like Kirk, are never pretentious.

  34. One thing about Russel Kirk that is often forgotten, he wrote superb ghost stories in the classic english style. His ancestral home was haunted, as his family and friends found out over the years. He was really more than just a political personality. His life had some interesting angles.

  35. We approach these problems as moderns have defined it for us through the institutions under which we currently live. When anyone describes community they refer to its ethnic culture, its economic arrangements and its political ties. Yet for 99% of our history community has always operated not through its political institutions but through its religious institutions. Community was family tied to extended family tied to parish. A small collection of parishes would act collectively under a political umbrella with the greater state. But community life was ordered by parish life and its bio-ethnic traditions. This is a structural arrangements as much as it is a religious one.

    The destruction of religious institutions as an integral part of social formation and order is the root of why our communities have become atomized and non existent. A religious community is a neighborhood community. Excluding rural communities, if you need a parking lot for your parishioners you don’t have a traditional neighborhood ethnic religious cultural enclave.

    Resurrecting the old gods in today’s world is futile. Yet we will fail if we don’t address this hole in how modern societies structure themselves. Anything worthy of being called a civilization revolved and was ordered around two poles, a throne and an altar. The altar (I mean this in a structural sense) is dead. Most modern religious institutions are traitorous, insular, goofy or quasi social clubs for desperate and disparate peoples. Trying to solve a problem that most people are not even aware of or a problem they misunderstand and are thus dismissive of is no simple task.

      • We don’t have that white-hot intensity, though. They view their war as a cosmic battle between good and evil, where anything but total victory is unacceptable.

        I think we’re doing the right thing, though. Slow separation to gradually strengthen our our sense of security within our group identities. Over the past decade or so, the right has replaced many of its virtual shantytowns with real communities where we keep our brothers tuned in, motivate those who are struggling with clown world, and just have a good time.

        This community is so much friendlier than flagship leftist forums, where breathy moralizing and frenetic bickering seem to be more important than social solidarity. If we can avoid those pitfalls — often easier said than done — much of our future will fall into place.

      • On reflection perhaps the only other answer is an alternative religion. One must either exterminate a sect or convert its followers and in order to do that one needs a religion, not ideas.

        What that looks like is another matter ?

    • Imo the barrier is materialism. As long as people are focused on their baubles, pills, and likes, that’s where they’ll look for meaning. The trick is getting them to look at other things. At the end of the day, it’s a matter of attention, with all the philosophical problems that go with it. The good news is things can change dramatically with a change of one or two conditions, even though that would be a tall task in itself. Then again, look at what’s going on. Impossible things are possible now!

        • Anything without a screen. How to do that? I have no idea. Haven’t thought much about how. Maybe the great shutdown has some lessons. Something about boredom. All I know is whatever a person thinks about is what he thinks is reality.

          Maybe boredom is the secret ingredient to whites. All those winters with nothing to do but drink, hunt, and daydream.

          • Then you’re looking at models which are similar to addiction. From personal experience, you typically have to yank people out of the druggie dopamine feedback loop kicking and screaming.

            Problem is that various western social conventions (I’m looking at you, “Work Culture”), incentivize slavery to this feedback loop. People are rewarded for stapling their phones to their faces, and I’m just barely being hyperbolic. Fast response time to social media notifications and emails is associated with “higher productivity in the workplace,” as though that’s the end-all to the human condition.

            It’s very depressing. My girlfriend got to keep her job, and it’s created a power imbalance around the house. All of her duties are email and phone based. I just don’t see us escaping from pixel samsara.

          • Addiction, absolutely. Addiction always ends one way or the other, so that’s a silver lining.

            My guess is there will be a coming apart. Some will kick the habit, others will die. Painful but healthy process. I have a feeling the plague is a metaphor for what people unconsciously know.

            And as long as you’re staying busy I bet the power imbalance shifts before too long.

          • Yeah, I’m doing my best. But work is quickly becoming her new society. It’s totally compatible with this quarantine. Most of our old ways, though, have been disrupted, and it’s hard to find stuff to replace them

          • I really believe things are going to boomerang. How and to what extant I don’t know, but I have a feeling it’s going to be big. Take heart, and good luck.

          • I do hope that it boomerangs. As for trades, I used to be a beekeeper. It was the only manual labor thing I was actually good at. Otherwise, I can’t wield a screwgun for shit. God bless the contractor who took me on as a kid.

          • That’s why I have been advocating for the trades for some time now Brother…Our overtime slowed a bit but that’s all that has happened to us…

          • (I’m looking at you, “Work Culture”), incentivize slavery to this feedback loop. People are rewarded for stapling their phones to their faces, and I’m just barely being hyperbolic.

            Yeah, I retired from that culture about a year and a half ago, but I got immunized to it pretty early on. When dealing with those types who took their whole identity from the fact that they were available for work 24×7 I’d just sigh and roll my eyes and continue to refuse to check my phone and email after hours. I remember in departmental meetings when they’d heap praise on some poor sod for working right in the middle of his freaking vacation. Dedication! I was just never vulnerable to that kind of brainwashing or peer pressure.

  36. I’d never heard of Frank Meyer prior to this. Just looked him up. He looks like the bastard lovechild of Rahm Emmanuel and H.P. Lovecraft. It figures that Buckley sided with the guy who looks like he should be manning the desk at an occult bookstore.

    • I don’t know much about his political philosophy, but his book on the training of communist cadres is well worth reading (because he was one).

      • “(Meyer’s) book on the training of communist cadres…”

        Was he? Huh. So were the Sackler brothers, card-carrying members “investigated” by the FBI from 1952-68.

        These 3 psychiatrists somehow bought Purdue, a household cleaning products company, and converted it into a Pharma powerhouse with the intro of Prozac and short-skirted, high-heeled “sales reps”, former escorts; direct commission pitches to doctors, and union hiring of unemployed psychiatrists as school counselors, giving us the ‘high school cocktail’ of anti-psychotics served to kids.

        Weird how communists have the money to exploit these niches. Almost as if robbing the social capital seed corn through compound interest payments gets redirected by a self-interested cabal. I wonder if they hired writers too?

        • All that tax money sure went somewhere. As someone once said. A good business man never uses his own money to do things.

  37. I took the Z man’s criticism of Kirk in some areas not that we need to destroy completely the institutions of the current United States.
    We just need to make them work for the people.
    And the people is us.
    The us in our case is the founding stock Europeans.
    Not that we should not take the intrest of other groups into consideration, we should.
    And we should seek to treat all other groups with fairness.
    But someone has to hold power in a society.
    The current cosmopolitans and Silicon Valley oligarchs holding power over us do not have our intrests in mind.
    I like Z’s point about the human condition.
    There is no perfect system on this earth.
    Every system has imperfections.
    A system based upon what we currently know about biology would be better than the current system.
    I think this will be shown to be true in time because our current system’s imperfections are going to grow intolerable.

    • We’re in no position to be overthrowing anything right now. It would be a huge accomplishment if even a single county declared independence from the anti-American federal government and refused to follow certain laws which harmed the county (like mass 3rd world immigration and taxation to fund it in other states). Who knows how many years off we are from even that single first step.

      • To Z’s point, it would be a huge accomplishment if when I brought up freedom of association I didn’t get weird looks from fellow whites. It’s not even that they think I’m “Hitler”, it’s like I’ve confessed belief in some strange, alien god. Thinking I was Hitler would in some ways be an improvement.

        • They sort of get the concept if you ask abstractly. “Do you think people should be free to associate with who they want?”. They will almost always say yes without hesitation.

          But the implication of what that actually means in practice “Do you think groups should be able to exclude Blacks and women if they want from their organizations?” Will awake the worms in their head and cause a physical pain that forces them to contradict the previous answer.

          The contradiction will not matter if you go back and ask the first question again. Which will revert to a yes. Its amazing to watch how these 2 things can coexist without apparent dissonance.

          I would expand that a little more as you can get the obvious answer as to whether there should be women only groups, black only etc. By probing around you realize white males are the only one that awaken the writihing mental worms and one must ask how they were placed there so precisely.

          • The second question should be “Should women be able to have meetings free from men?”. No 3: Should blacks be forced to allow white men into their clubs?”

          • As I pointed out in the second part of the comment. I have found it does not matter. You get the obvious answers to those. Yes they should be free to do that.

            You only get the mad internal worms thrashing when its white men excluding any other group. I have found it is impossible to overcome this barrier to get them to see the contradiction. Its like 2 different parts of the brain that are not connected are answering the same question.
            I would love to know if someone else has managed to get this to be acknowledged and how to go about it, without the obvious worse than comparisons cropping up?

          • Just flip it. “Should you be free to avoid people you don’t want to have anything to do with”?

          • I believe that the answer to this conundrum is that deep down most people, of all races and sexes, are white male supremacists. They know that if white men are permitted to act collectively as an interest group, white men will end up kicking everybody else’s asses. And they are correct to fear that. If just twenty percent of white men began functioning as a cohesive unit, they would quickly become the most powerful human force on Earth.

          • And the way you do that is build Community with those white guys so you can start working as a unit…

          • You’ve got to put a finer point on it. “Should a black restaurant owner be forced to serve Klansmen.” That one always leaves them gaping. You’re welcome.

          • Exactly — the diverse already practice freedom of association so we have to do it too.

            Zimbabwe, as always, is the perfect example. Zimbabweans wanted a country for themselves, by themselves, and Amren thoroughly documented year by year how they accomplished that over 25 years:

            Luckily, we’re still probably about five years away from having our assets and property seized by the diverse here in the US, but the reparations rumblings are getting louder, so it’s getting close. Probably another 5 years after that when our citizenship is revoked; we’re already stateless after all.

            Zimbabwe is coming here whether we like it or not and we have to re-learn freedom of association by stealth to survive.

    • conservatism is a web of contractions. it is hard to find anything coherent about it

      conservatism was about preserving the monarchy, and here you have American conservatives , as part of the tea party, imitating the likeness of Paul Revere

  38. Once upon a time, in our ancestral evolutionary development (and before the modern era of civilization), a man and his ideas were both most often defended with his life. And losing was the ultimate sacrifice (and outcome). Then along came oratory and debate, in which only harsh words were exchanged and both the victor and vanquished walked away essentially unscathed. And the internet has taken this isolation to a “whole nutha level.” No one has any real skin the game anymore. And that is killing the species in slow motion. How’s that for a heretical idea?

  39. Hey Z, I no longer see you on my You Tube feed? No problem I just come to your site for the podcast but just wondering?
    Sometimes I share your You Tube podcast with friends.

    • It shows up in my feed. But then I always view YT on the subscription setting and not home page. It is that homepage view ( vs that tends to hide so many new videos from people. There is a subscription section on the home page, but it is always missing videos from the people I subscribe to.

  40. Zman, normally I really like the podcast but this was your worst by a long way. At least twice you said Kirk was wrong and then agreed with him in your explanation of the particular principle. Kirk, as you pointed out was not a Buckleyite , yet you talked at other points as if he was. And dismissed a number of his principles for that exact reason. Maybe the problem here was painting with to broad a brush.

    Prudence does not not mean as you implied ‘do nothing’, it means ‘look before you leap’. In other words make sure you end up where you want to end up. How can this be something that we are against?

    I also wonder when you say that there is nothing worth preserving, do you plan on destroying all of the institutions of the United States and to rebuild them?

    Surely it is not the institutions that are the problem but the leadership and the philosophy that currently run them. If the leadership and the philosophy were to change and to be from our side of the great divide (a term I now use when talking about ‘our thing’), then why would we need to destroy them?

    This is a rare case where I find myself disagreeing with you.

    • Prudence should mean “look before you leap” but is often implemented as “don’t look or leap.” That was he point I as making with regards to conservatives.

      • As conservatives our problem has been we’ve spent entirely too much time looking, and bickering about how we shall leap. When the time finally comes to leap, we find we are too feeble to 🙁

    • “Surely it is not the institutions that are the problem but the leadership and the philosophy that currently run them”. Surely? After incrementally and successfully perverting those institutions to this sorry point over the course of 230 years one might instead ask instead if this surely was inevitable. The anti-Federalist thought so. What better example could you have than circa April 17 2020? Look around at your democratic citizenry.

      • democracies were always meant to be temporary. on historical average you have more or less hereditary dictators.

        • Hmmm.. Bush sr, Bush jr, Bill C, Hill C, Pelosi, Newsome, etc etc. Not just politics, also, in media and govt agencies huge numbers of multiple overlapping family relationships.

          A very large proportion of senior and local politics/media/agency is within family and multi-generational. This has been the case in the USA for at least 50 years. Most people are just trained not to see it.

          Seems like the temporary democracy part has already vanished and no one noticed.

          A conspiracy theory they cry.

          When a simple glance through the multiple relations shows the US has a hereditary ruling class. If one has not noticed by now they are just not paying attention.

      • Yes surely. Institutions are everything from the sheriffs department to NASA. Why do all of these things need to be destroyed and rebuilt?

    • it depends on where you leap to. and before that, where you step on in the first place, and where you look.

      some people wanna leap anywhere as long as you have solid rock leg strength, like the Burnhamists and Bioleninists, and the less pozzed of antifa (who see an imaginary utopian special rock to leap to in the real world, where there’s only whirlpools); kinda like old puas who told you to apply the numbers club game and eventually you’d find a healthy wife, if you didn’t become a degenerate first.

      some don’t wanna leap at all even if the rock is sinking, like the mgtowers and the Buckleyites and lolbertarians. and of course, the currently pozzed successor of Saint Peter and pedofriends.

      others think it’s just having the most flowery and perfect style of leaping, even if doomed, what matters. which is what the whole centrist establishment is doing, both Pharisee-right and SJW-left; and what pornstars on film do i guess, simulate real pleasure so you are happy with placebo-sex you wanker.

      at any rate, Kirk was a great Protsecular (=American) thinker that gave a lot of simple prudent advice, yet only worthy in whatever the reader sees into it, without any transcendence irradiating from it. that is, advice based on the faith in the processes itself, not in the Big Goal in the Sky that guarantees the processes and its reactant parts found in nature (aka humans and other matter), which vary widely in genetic and environmental purity. again, faith without works. another Meditations.
      still, better than most of those around him.

  41. Now that Paul Gottfried has taken over Chronicles they are doing a series on the old right, covering many of these forgotten men. Jack Trotter wrote a piece on Buckley for the latest issue that is online now. It is mostly critical of Buckley, especially for his treatment of Mel Bradford and Joe Sobran. It includes this passage on his purge of Sobran:

    Certainly Sobran had been quite critical of the Israelis, but anti-Semitic? Buckley thought not, and, to his credit, defended Sobran both publicly and privately, while at the same time writing in a private letter to Decter, “What Joe needs to know is that certain immunities properly attach to pro-Israeli sentiment for historical reasons.” In short, you are allowed to criticize Israel only if and when your pro-Israeli sentiments have been satisfactorily rubber-stamped by certain self-appointed gatekeepers.

    • The Mel Bradford stuff intrigues me. The old paleos can’t get past that for some reason. That episode seems to capture their sentiments about their purging by the neocons in the 80’s and 90’s.

      • I would imagine for the older ones, they knew Bradford personally and were outraged by the betrayal. The reasons listed by Trotter were that Buckley and the neocons convinced Reagan “that Bradford’s earlier support of the presidential campaigns of George Wallace and, more importantly, his repeated attacks on Abraham Lincoln’s contribution to the “decline of the West,” would embarrass Reagan.” They wanted to be able to pander on race and say “look we purged this racist.”

        • The purging business by the Buckleyites is worth a post, I think. It is a good story that our side tends to get wrong or at least draw the wrong lesson.

          • Scapegoating? One of my favorite Machiavelli stories is the ruler who had a crime problem in one of his provinces. He got a blood-thirsty man to eliminate the problem, which he did ruthlessly. The peons screamed of the draconian measure. The ruler was shocked, shocked that such had happened, he never authorized it, and had the hired man killed. Such is politics.

          • Only Millennials sneer at history. Get lost, punk and come back when you learn to read something other than txt msgs.

  42. Thank you Mr. Z for some commentary on something *other* than the current panic. I look forward to listening.

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