The End of Left and Right

Some of my posts, of late, have elicited shock and horror from people, who probably think I am a fellow traveler. The post on inequality is the most obvious example. As I mentioned at the start of that post, people outside the Progressive fever swamps have been trained for generations to run screaming from the room whenever the topic of inequality is raised. After all, that is what commies talk about and being conservative has always meant not being a commie.

The interesting bit from my perspective is the assumption that when it comes to inequality, there can only be two positions. One is the Randian view that the high achievers should get everything and the low achievers should die. Concerns about merit and social comity are for losers. The other view is that a dictatorship of the proletariat should rise up and murder the rich and turn the country into a version of Harrison Bergeron. In other words, equality is a stalking horse for communism.

In my post, I offered no policy proposals. I just pointed out that concentrations of wealth are lethal to self-government and social stability. That is the lesson of history. The New Right or whatever we are calling it these days, should be willing to discuss this reality. Otherwise, you cede the field to retrograde loons, who simultaneously demand higher wages and the importation of cheap helot labor from cultures antithetical to Western values. In other words, the game has changed.

You see it in the recent election in Hitler Land. The loser is described as “far extreme right” while the winner is described as a lovable teddy bear. OK, I made up that last part, but that is not the point. The “right” in this case is simply the guy who wants to keep Austria an on-going concern as a separate country. His economic and social positions are irrelevant. What brought him and his party to prominence was opposition to immigration and globalism.

Similarly, his opponent is best known for wanting to liquidate the country’s borders and dissolving it into the amorphous blob that is Europe. Alexander Van der Bellen was the head of the Green Party for a long time and once said, “Anyone who loves Austria must be shit.” His positions on economics and other matters are a muddle, but no one really cares. He is not a Nazi and he is a globalist. That is all that matters and it is the reason he was able to squeak out a victory.

In America, the old Left-Right paradigm no longer makes any sense. The Buckley Conservatives have no meaningful proposals to roll back the welfare state. The Left has no plans to level the playing field by seizing the wealth of the rich and distributing it to the poor. Both sides wave their hands around for old times sake, but they are both open-borders globalists, funded by the buccaneer class of donors.

Calling Ted Cruz a right-winger, for example, misses the point. Sure, he would like to tinker with the tax code in a slightly different way than Hillary Clinton and he has slightly different views on how to bomb the muzzies, but on the defining issues of our age, they are pretty much in agreement. Both the Buckley Right and the Left embrace globalism, open borders and the ceding of popular sovereignty to un-elected international bodies controlled by global corporations.

The New Right that is emerging is not defined by tax policy, endless yapping about the constitution or its principled losing. It is a cultural movement, first and foremost. The technocratic managerialism that defines the Modern Left and Buckley Conservatives is not a part of the New Right. Instead, it is opposition to open borders and globalism based on citizenism. Being a citizen is not just location. It is language, customs and historical perspective.

The striking difference between my view on equality, for example, and some of my critics is that I place great value on social stability. I am willing to use the power of the state, if necessary, to prevent global buccaneers from destroying national culture. Libertarians and Buckley Conservatives faint when hearing those words because they place theoretical limits on government, and their symbolic loyalty to those limits, above all else.

There is the great new dividing line in politics. One side is concerned solely with stability and comity at the top. The Wall Street Journal and the New York Times argue endlessly about how best to organize global governance, because that is what matters to them. They are not just indifferent to what happens in your neighborhood. They see such concern as a fault, a mental defect that should exclude you from the halls of power. As far as they are concerned, you are no more important than the Malaysian sweatshop worker. You are just an economic unit.

On the other side of the dividing line are the localists, the people who focus their attention on their neighborhood, their town, their city and their country. The Super Duper Global Trade Pact may be great for Mega Corp, but if it means all the jobs in your town get shipped to Malaysia, then it is not good for you. Cheap stuff at Walmart is not much good to a man without a job. Generous welfare benefits are not much good when everyone spends it on liquor and meth.

That is the new line in politics. Are you concerned about what you see out of your window or are you concerned about what you see through your telescope. Hillary Clinton thinks of the US government as the local interface of the emerging global state. It is one facet of the managerial class. You, as a “citizen” have no control of it, you interact with it like an ATM machine. That is exactly the way they see national governments. They are just nodes on the network. All of the company approved GOP options held the same views until Trump came calling.

Left and Right are dead. It is globalist versus localist and everyone is going to have to pick sides, even the libertarians for a change. The #nevertrump loons are picking sides, even if they do not fully understand it. They are the toadies and rumpswabs that are in the baggage train of every ruling elite. They are the folks who rush into the street to greet the invaders. They do not understand any of this, but they are men who believe in nothing but self-preservation so it really does not matter. Everyone else will pick sides, based on their perceived self-interest.

57 thoughts on “The End of Left and Right

  1. Pingback: New political lines are being drawn

  2. Think you are spot on regarding inequality in particular. The combination of the “third industrial revolution” failing to provide the kinds of fundamental productivity and GDP growth that created the expanding middle class in the 20th century with what Murray terms “cognitive sorting” among elites is highly toxic. And frankly I see few, right or left, having an honest discussion about that.

  3. When I see posts like this, I can’t help but think how far ahead of his time was Russell Kirk. He would have approved of this post wholeheartedly.

  4. It’s France Marine Le Pen who said there is no more Left of Right but Globalists vs Nationalists.

    It’s not about the economy, stupid, but their opinions in how to bring the 3rd world inside your country and ruin national sovereignity, this is the litmus test for the ruling elite accept you.

  5. Globalization vs. localization sounds like centralization vs. decentralization. There is nothing new about this debate.

    • Good point. lot of people wonder what happened to the US Constitution, administrative tyranny has overwhelmed it, aka centralized power.
      By any chance, are you related to the website, who posted Eric frank Russell’s masterpiece “And Then There Where None”?

  6. Some of my posts, of late, have elicited shock and horror from people, who probably think I am a fellow traveler. The post on inequality is the most obvious example. As I mentioned at the start of that post, people outside the Progressive fever swamps have been trained for generations to run screaming from the room whenever the topic of inequality is raised. After all, that’s what commies talk about and being conservative has always meant not being a commie.

    I think I’m about as anti-communist as they come, but I didn’t have anything like that reaction to your previous post, Z-man. That was because as I read the “inequality” post, I was thinking:

    1. Z-man is right
    2. We’re among friends here

    What I meant by, “we’re among friends here” is that I’ve never seen you talk up communism or lefty economics, so it simply didn’t enter my mind that the topic of “inequality” (or its cousin, “poverty”), when mentioned by someone like you, would be some kind of prelude to or a stalking horse for a pitch for the Red Revolution.

  7. WR Mead has an essay up today, “The Meaning of Mr. Trump,” that relates directly to many of the themes Z’s post explores here and is worth reading:

    Mead is voice for the establishment, but he’s neither blind nor doctrinaire, and he frankly acknowledges that the failures of the establishment left and the kept, poodle dog right (although he doesn’t express it that way) have led to a crisis, or at least the beginning of a crisis. However, he maintains an albeit slim faith that the credentialed, managerial elite controlling our political, financial and cultural life are A) competent enough to recognize the problems and capable of offering workable solutions so that we can begin to reverse course; and, B) that they have enough integrity and honesty to care about the fate of their nation, that they retain at least a vestige of patriotism.

    Like most readers of this blog, I figure the odds of Mead’s being right approximate a snowball’s chance in hell.

    • The establishment technocrats at least seem to realize that they lost. It’s the so-called “principled conservatives” running around like a chicken with its head cut off right now.

  8. Nations are the global form of federalism, the antidote to centralization and uniformity. Inevitably, one result of federalism is that fifty percent of all entities will be below average. The Utopian mind cannot conceive that this condition is as necessary as pain is to a healthy body.

    “At this point I remind the reader of the general meaning which I give to the word customs: namely that collection of intellectual and moral characteristics which men bring to the social condition. If, in the course of this book, I have not succeeded in convincing the reader of the importance I attach to the practical experience, behavior, opinions, and, in a word, the customs of Americans, in maintaining their laws, I have failed in the main objective I set myself in writing it.”–Alexander de Tocqueville

  9. Pingback: The End of Left and Right - Maggie's Farm

  10. If Trump is the anti-globalist hero, color me surprised that the bulk of the Republican Party is rolling over and getting in line behind him.

    • Trump has always been a trade skeptic. I think he jumped on the immigration issue because it just seems obvious to him. First and foremost, Trump wants to win the election so you have to assume a fair amount of sales pitch. Basically Trump is just a guy with normal American instincts. He has a billion dollars and a style made for the media age so Trump is the de facto leader of the revolution in the same way Alfred the Great end up becoming the savior of England or Charles Martel the savior of Europe. There’s a lot of dumb luck involved in these things. If Maxentius had been a bit more prudent, he may have defeated Constantine at the Mivian Bridge and Christianity would have died with him.

      • I understand the Trump side of it. What surprises me is how the Republican Party just rolled over after its recent history of being an integral piece of the globalist expansion.

        Edit–my phone and tablet seem to be giving me different names lol.

        • The GOP has been composed of three parts since the Reagan years. One part is managerial and technocratic. They are with the left side of the political world that government is the solution, they just disagree on ends and some of the implementations. Then there is a third that is the old localist/populist Right. Jeff Sessions is a perfect example. They are small government in the sense they want less federal government in the things that should be handled locally. The other third just go whichever way the wind is blowing. Right now Trump looks like the horse to rid so they get on the Trump horse. If Lindsay Graham had won, they would be in sundresses and singing show tunes.

          • Seems to me they all essentially use administrative tyranny to secure power and wealth. Hell with the US Constitution. That old piece of parchment is so yesterday.

          • Show tunes? If your asking me that question, I love good music, John Phillip Sousa, to Machine head. What I hate, and I try not to hate anything, it is never good for the heart, I despise cultural marxists and everything they stand for. And nothing on God’s green Earth will ever dissuade me from my feelings regarding the destruction and tribulations the sonofabitches foment and create. In all their hedious and insidious forms they are the scourge of the human race.
            That answer your question?

  11. I guess I’m a localist. I look out the window and see a town and a way of life that’s disappearing.
    The front doors are being locked, the police show up to investigate kids that are outside without a parental unit on oversight, few of the clerks at the donuts shop or supermarket speak English.

    The twenty to forty year old generation is poorly educated and has the attention span of a goldfish.
    I find myself being forced into the position of defending or explaining Trump and that’s pissing into the wind of the media windstorm of biased and slanted reporting (shouldn’t use that word, it doesn’t apply anymore). Last year I was as negative about Trump as anyone else could be, but what have they left me?

    Why does a candidate have to be a ‘nice guy’? You’re not voting for the man to move next door and be your neighbor, vote for the son’of’abitch, as long as he’s our SOB.

    Zman is quite right, there is no golden illuminated set of rules of what government should be, it should be what works. What we have now doesn’t work. Every year this goes on the dead weight of dysfunctional people that will resist any attempt to stop the decline gets larger…
    and stupider. Maybe Trump (or any mortal) can’t fix it. But he’s the only one I can see that is even willing to try.

  12. I’m currently wondering exactly how, when, and why the community of so-called “principled conservatives” who are currently frothing with #NeverTrump rage became such a circle-jerk. I sensed this early in the election, despite thinking myself one of those conservatives, when I decided I was a Trump guy before Scott Walker quit the race, and always preferred Trump over Cruz.

    As an observer, I had a feeling that the “principled conservatives” were all talk, had their heads up their asses, and were all too eager to go down in defeat clutching their principles. Looking at the #NeverTrump idiots at this point, it’s the circlejerk aspect of it that stands out above everything else. I’m not sure why I couldn’t see it before Trump happened.

  13. One thing about the Austrians I admire, is their Von Misses Institute. Bastion of reason in an asylum of cultural marxist insanity and their 1 world order human extinction movement.

    • The von Mises Institute is in Alabama, not Austria. Von Mises (an Austrian) was a part of what’s known as the Austrian school of economics. They have many reasonable ideas, some less so, but most, sadly, are heartless. Zman is correct in his analysis and I applaud it. I’m an old-school conservative and find Ayn Rand’s thought repugnant.

      This comes down to a kind of clash between Thomism and the Frankfurt School, particularly with respect to culture.

      • Buddy, you know how stuck up and opinionated you come across as with that comment?
        It’s pretty hateful actually.
        Try reason, what you got to say would be of far more value to me, if that was your intent. I would appreciate you for it, really and truly. If you want to cram it up my arse, you loose the arguement completely.

      • Explain the repugnancy of this axiom by Rand if you don’t care:
        “We are fast approaching the stage of the ultimate inversion: the stage where the government is free to do anything it pleases, while the citizens may act only by permission; which is the stage of the darkest periods of human history, the stage of rule by brute force.”
        — Ayn Rand
        …..clearly she was just paranoid?…delusional?…or your going to tell me resistance is futile? I’m definitely interested to hear you justify the veracity of your comment.

        • I always read Rand slightly differently: that to maximize my own success and happiness requires context, and that a peaceful and prosperous community is the best context to succeed in. Like the idea of “Enlightened Self-interest”, Selfishness is best served by a broader view of the field.

          In this formulation it is not irrational to give to help your neighbor, if in so doing you are being effective and not simply throwing money at a problem to salve your conscience. It is necessary maintenance of the happy and prosperous community.

          For that reason, such aid should always be local, administered by those who understand the individual need. Those needs are not a claim on me, I am free to ignore them to concentrate on myself and many will. I believe, however, that enough people will understand the broader context and choose to participate that such a system will work, and generally work well.

          • Hear Hear! Well said Man. Jeffersonian agrarian living is much to do with what your saying too I think, it is that whole family, tribe, precinct system of local self determination and sufficiency, the real community organizers. And you hit on something very special about Ann Rand, she too like Jefferson understood economic freedom is Liberty, the two are inextricably linked.
            From that perspective I think it is safe to contend the globalists see people who self determine as you describe very well, enemies of the state. Of their power and wealth. Screw the bastards. Their time is almost up.

      • And just how in the hell can you call a guy like Murry Rothbard heartless? He was a great proponent of the whole Austrian theory of unfettered economic freedom, aka Liberty. Heartless? Dude, what planet you from? Just look at the old Philosopher, he looks like everybody’s favorite great uncle, never mind his gentle nature that comes through in his reasoning. Lord love a duck, you must have had a terrible childhood.

  14. ZMan, that is an awesome screed. Top shelf all the way. Really appreciate you for it.
    Bravo! Man.

    Andrew Brietbart, bless his soul, said “Culture is upstream of politics”, righfully so. There’s some things upstream of the scalawags running things too. Like us dirt people. Legitimately so.
    Guy name of Billy Beck said about ten years back, “All politics are local”, “All politics in this country are now dress rehearsal for civil war, as there is no voting our way out of this, and that is as it should be, as people become manifest in their destiny”.
    You are right, we are all like the pig now, committed. I suspect not going to be many who get a free ride on what’s coming. Even the ones with their finger in the wind, and that is definitely as it should be.
    I for one believe in the dirt people credo, It all begins with each of us. Local, Local, Local.

  15. I’ve been saying for a while now that “Left” and “Right” only describe attitudes. And they’re not very good at that — Bernie Sanders is a “far Left” lunatic these days, but he was a mainstream Democrat in the 90s and would’ve been a Republican pre-WWII. Trump is a populist demagogue who sounds like the Twitter version of William Jennings Bryan, but there hasn’t been an even kinda sorta nationalist candidate since Reagan (and, as you keep pointing out, “nationalist” back then just mean “anti-Soviet”), so everyone calls him “Right wing” for lack of a better term. Functionally, “Left” just means “subscribes to the lunacy of the week (e.g. “trans rights”),” while “Right” means “occasionally makes some obviously insincere Jesus noises.”

    • Bernie a pre WWII Republican?? Just what are you smoking? The man spent his honeymoon in the USSR, he is a communist. You’re saying that a dirty filthy commie like Bernie has the same politics as a pre WWII Republicans?? Nonsense.

      • He’s not a communist. He’s an old-school Progressive. His positions aren’t fundamentally different from Teddy Roosevelt’s Bull Moose campaign. The original Progressives were all Republicans — the split between the Progs and the traditional protectionists handed the election to Woodrow Wilson. Herbert Hoover’s plan for dealing with the Depression was no different than FDR’s; Hoover felt he lacked the Constitutional authority to actually do it (that’s the only difference between them and Bernie).

        • Many up votes to counter those bizarre downvotes!

          Teddy, an arist who never held a real job, whose family fortune was made by grandad Delano running the Raj’s opium to China, looked around at the living Empires of his time and decided he wanted one.

          The Rough Riders were a private mercenary company. These types were the guys Smedley Butler was talking about- plebians socialized the cost in coin and blood while patricians privatized the profit. Military governor FDR was called “the Butcher of Haiti” for a reason (palm oil was the desired resource).

        • Excellent point. Very few people, including no small number of pundits on the various networks, really know as much about US political history as they think they do, or ignore history they’re aware of to score meaningless points in TV “debates.” Teddy Roosevelt and the Progressive Party of the early 20th century advocated policies that would be deemed socialist in today’s political climate, including among others, a National Health Service, social insurance for the elderly, a federal securities commission, an inheritance tax, etc.

        • Yes he most certainly is a communist. What is it about commies that makes cretins like you make excuses for them? you never see anyone making excuses for Nazis. So mass murder based on religion or ethnicity is abhorrent but mass murder based on class is ok?

    • Something I don’t think gets enough attention is that Trump and his voters are non-ideological. The Left has always had its ideological litmus tests. The Right in the last 30 years has created its own. Most people are not ideologues though so Trump has a broad base of potential support. You see that in the polling.

      I’ll use myself as an example. I’m fine tweaking social security so it remains solvent, even if that means raising taxes. It’s not perfect and I would prefer other arrangements, but we have bigger fist to fry. Does that make me a liberal? So-called conservatives would say so. On the other hand, I’m for ending all corporate taxes. Does that make me a conservative?

      • Those ideological litmus tests should have shown how bizarre the marriages of convenience were for both sides. Remember the so-called “Blue Dog” Democrats? They were allowed to say they were pro-gun or anti-abortion, as they couldn’t get elected otherwise, so long as they voted the right way once in office. So, too, with the Republicans — the religious nutters used to be Democrats back in the days, then Dixiecrats, and they’re still perfectly fine with the nanny state, so long as it nannys in their preferred direction. And yet, everyone seems to believe that there’s some fundamental ideological connection between Jesus and corporate tax breaks, or “helping the working poor” and letting Chester the Molester use the ladies’ room. Remember “socially liberal but fiscally conservative?” That actually used to mean something. Alas, for most everybody, history is anything that happened more than two weeks ago.

        • Its evolved into a saturated culture of betrayal justifies the means politics.
          Us dirt people are a door mat on the threshold to that culture of corruption.

      • To your point about the Right’s litmus tests, I’m one of those guys who, three years ago, would have told you that I was a “rock-ribbed, red blooded, ultra-conservative”, or some such twaddle. But as I watched Mitt Romney clearly throw his election, as much through indifference as lack of appetite, and the subsequent failures of Boehner, McConnell, Ryan, Gowdy, Issa, hell, the whole lot of them, to mount anything even resembling a “Conservative” response to Obama’s and The Left’s insane juggernaut, I came to understand that I had become a caricature, a useful idiot, for a a movement, or party, that gave not two shitz for me, my business, or my family.

        I had my own Road To Damascus episode, and I’ve arrived on the other side as someone who now takes the measure of my fellow citizens primarily through their commitment to our American home, to our American society, to our neighbors and family and friends. Who believes that this country was built by Americans, for Americans. It’s ours. You can’t have it, nit without our approval. Does that make me Alt-Right? And does it make me a sell-out, having worked my ass off for 30+ years now, to want to grow the economy through any means available so that the American coffers can swell again, remove our embarrassing deficits, and substantiate programs like Social Security, which I’ve paid into for lo these many years?

        There’s mighty change afoot. I’m proof.

      • Makes you a guy with good common sense. Key word, common sense. Probably something you have in common with Donald Trump. Being a dirt person is to have common sense. And maybe you hit the nail on the head right there, as good a reason as a lot of reasons, why Donald Trump has a populist and grass roots following. Most people with a care know a decent thing in others when they see it.
        Hey, nothing wrong with being provincial in your sense of the reality’s involved.

    • I think that there was some effort to label Trump as a No-nothing or a nativist at first. But since those terms have been purged from the Newspeak Dictionary, they didn’t resonate.

      By the way, I watched some clips of s e cupp last night (I’m not a TV watcher at all). Dumb as a bag of hammers. She was just repeating talking points in bullet fashion without even putting them in sentences. It reminded me of Orwell’s description of Party agitators in the 1930’s, spouting slogans from the party line without any logical or narrative connection. Duckspeak is what he called it in 1984.

      • Beck, Cupp, the whole filthy scalawag lot of them. Lenin’s “Useful Dupes”. They come in all flavors of the rainbow. Though it is only fair to say some are sycophants. That’s what Bernie Sanders is, the Pide Piper of Useful Dupes. His following are mostly people too young or brainwashed to understand history is circular, that the only difference between a progressive and a commie, is one don’t have an AK47. Yet. Every astroturf marxist pogrom begins with a Pide Piper. Victor Davis Hanson said something couple years ago was rather succinct: Journalists as Ring Wraiths – “Today’s Washington journalists are like J. R. R. Tolkien’s ring wraiths, petty lords who wanted a few shiny golden Obama rings — only to end up as shrunken slaves to the One.”
        Any difference if the rightwing branch of cultural marxists do it?

        • Right wing idiots come in two flavors in my opinion. On the one hand there are those who have been assimilated by the globalist machine, and on the other hand there are the conservative purist circle-jerks who have lost touch with all reality outside of their safe little bubble. Those flavors aren’t necessarily mutually exclusive, as I’ve seen some of the circle-jerks who have resigned themselves to political correctness.

          • Circle-jerks! You crack me up. That right there, if it ain’t a fertile description. Whose the pivot men?

  16. It’s worth noting that the Austrian election looks like it caught a bad dose of election fraud. Van Der Bellen was losing by 3 percentage points until they counted the mail-in votes; a comeback that was statistically improbable to say the least. The Austrian Presidency is an almost purely ceremonial position so it really doesn’t matter much either way; but it shows that the globalists will take any measures necessary to advance their agenda.

    • The Austrian president has the power to dissolve the parliament and call for new elections, which Hofer promised to do, so it actually is a pretty big deal. All signs are the establishment parties would have received a drubbing.

    • You think?:-) Obvious secession of hearts and minds, never mind acts of defiance, against the one worlders by the dirt people is an existential threat to the sonsofabitches. They are going to do anything to keep the dirt people subjects. Until they can’t. There’s another aspect to this, Liberty is dangerous, scares lot of people. Think about it, you have to be truthfully responsible for yourself and what you do. What you do to others. There is no State to hold your hand. To protect your special interests. No nanny state to protect you when your feelings are hurt, or to bribe when you are incapable of standing on your own druthers. No feed trough to belly up to and gorge on the thieved prosperity of others who made it on their own sweat.
      This guy puts some things in proper perspective: “In the last analysis, provincialism is your belief in yourself, in your neighborhood, in your reality. It is patriotism without belligerence. Convincing cases have been made to show that all great art is provincial in the sense of reflecting a place, a time, and a Zeitgeist” -Richard Weaver I say its more than that. Richard Fernandez wrote – “Ambitious men through the ages have made the mistake of imagining that power grows in proportion to the coercive force they possessed. In fact there is an inverse relationship between coercion and lasting authority. States fail not from a lack of a police but from a surfeit of lies. Societies die from the loss of trust. The destruction of trust may in retrospect be the single most destructive act committed by elitist politics in the Western democracies. The elites may stopped caring a long time ago, what they never expected was that one day the masses would return the compliment”. I think Plato had some sage words on that score.

    • Banzai, look at what happened in Catalonia and Scotland regarding secession recently, going on with Britex. Actually, scratch that, what happen in 1862 here when the South Constitutionally chose the lawful recourse of secession. Lincoln and his fellow cultural marxists waged a war of genocide, they are still at it, what with trying to revise history and disappear every evidence of that secession and the culture that legitimately had enough of the North’s yankee meddling.
      Dont misunderstand my viewpoint, I’m a yankee from northern NH. Secession from tyrants and tyranny is a primal right. Don’t matter who you are.

  17. This won’t be over until the smokestacks go cool. It’s the only way it’s ever been settled

    • Some say let it burn, salt the earth, only way to be sure. Days when I think there is something to that, and others I have faith in what makes us the nation of dirt people, not government, what we are. It’s definitely a love hate relationship. Safe to say we all got a lot of shit figure out before this is over if we are going to come out the other side whats coming better for it.

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