Failure analysis is one of those things that most people do every day, but they don’t think about it that way. Much of what passes for a work in a modern corporation is exception handling, which is just solving the problems that occur when the normal business processes fail in some way. No one calls customer service to tell them that they are happy with the product and have no complaints. Those departments and the people in them exist to figure out what went wrong and remedy it.
At a higher level, smart people making big salaries spend their days trying to understand why complex systems produce unacceptable results. There are people who spend every day studying plane crashes, looking for the cause of the failure. Pretty much every quality control program is just failure analysis. The idea is to measure success against some ambitious standard and then look for the causes as to why the standard is not currently being met.
The one area of life where failure analysis is seldom used is politics. When the goals are not met, and they are never met, no one asks “How come this policy did not work as we expected?” Conservatives, for example, never think about why their side loses almost every fight with the Left. The ones they win are the ones the Left does not care about all that much, like moving commas around the tax code. In some cases, like emptying the jails, the conservative victory was really an own goal.
In conventional politics, this is fine, as failing is often a career enhancer. Failing up is such a common phenomenon in Washington that it is the norm. That’s because a politician failing to deliver for his voters is usually doing so with the blessing of the inner party or powerful influencers of the party. Success and failure within an established political order is defined as helping or harming the establishment. Modern Washington cares only about maintaining their cultural and political hegemony.
Outsider politics and reform efforts play by a different standard. Their very existence depends upon them succeeding. The same is true for outsider politics, where the game is to alter or overturn the status quo. Failure in these cases not only means there is no change to the established order, but often the reformers and their supporters suffer serious consequences. It’s why understanding failure is paramount for outsider politics and political reformers. Mistakes can be lethal.
Strangely, there is very little failure analysis in the graveyard of right-wing resistance to Progressive aggression. For close to seventy years now, all efforts to stop the Left’s march though society have failed, and no one bothers to think about it. Instead, it is just more calls to keep doing the same things over and over. Today, for example, so-called conservatives keep bellowing about the constitution, while they sit at home obeying lock down orders.
If there is going to be an alternative to the liberal democratic order, it must start with first accepting that all past efforts failed. That’s a difficult emotional hurdle for most, because it means questioning important assumptions. It is much easier to keep repeating the same chants than to honestly question your own beliefs, but if the trajectory of American politics is going to change, it must begin with accepting that the past is a graveyard of errors.
That’s what the show is about this week. Putting it together, it quickly became clear that it is a very big topic. I could probably do a couple hours on every segment. The failure of Buckley conservatives could be a multi-part Dan Carlin series. Sixty-five years of failure is a lot of failure. Still, a good first effort is to introduce the concept and maybe get people thinking critically about what has been tried and why it failed. The reason we are here now is the prior efforts did not work.
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.
Note: The good folks at Alaska Chaga are offering a ten percent discount to readers of this site. You just click on the this link and they take care of the rest. About a year ago they sent me some of their stuff. Up until that point, I had never heard of chaga, but I gave a try and it is very good. It is like a tea, but it has a milder flavor. It’s hot here in Lagos, so I’ve been drinking it cold. It is a great summer beverage.
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This Week’s Show
- 00:00: Opening
- 02:00: The Study Of Failure
- 12:00: The Recitation Of Failures
- 22:00: The Buckleyites
- 32:00: The Paleocons
- 42:00: The White Nationalists
- 57:00: Closing
Full Show On Spreaker
Full Show On YouTube