Friday, January 11, 2019

The British Empire will rise again! Or, perhaps not

The British Empire will rise again! At least in the fevered imaginations of elderly expatriate Englishmen.

I was rather amused to see John Derbyshire’s post at Unz Review floating a suggestion for  an Anglo-Australian-NZ-Canadian alliance which he calls CANZUK. He goes further, suggesting it might also include the U.S. and it would then become CANZUKUS. The reasoning behind it is presumably that Brexit will leave Britain in desperate need of friends and trading partners.

This seems to me to be one of the most spectacularly silly and wrong-headed ideas I’ve heard for a very long time. In fact it’s a combination of several silly ideas.

Firstly, it’s yet another example of inane British fantasising about the lost glories of their Empire, and the good old days when Britain still counted for something. Maybe the Empire was glorious, maybe it wasn’t (that’s a whole different can of worms), but there’s one thing for certain - the Empire is dead. Derbyshire seems to think that the Empire could be recreated around the nucleus of the white Dominions. That’s an idea that might have had some merit in the 1930s. Maybe even in the 50s, except that the U.S. had made it quite clear that the British Empire was not going to be permitted to exist in any meaningful form, and it certainly was not going to be permitted to exist as a trading bloc. In any case the British were desperate to join the Common Market and turn their backs on the Dominions and the Dominions are not ever going to forget that. Now that things that have turned sour with Britain’s cool new European friends they can’t expect the friends they were so anxious to dump to forgive and forget. Britain, like the U.S., is not a nation that one could regard as a trustworthy friend.

The notion of extending this fantasy alliance to include the U.S. is the revival of the absurd and dangerous Churchillian nonsense of the English Speaking Peoples. The reality is that while the English Speaking Peoples might share some common history they have no economic, political or military interests in common. They never did.

Derbyshire is also buying into an even more absurd and even more toxic Churchillian idea, that of the Special Relationship between Britain and the United States. In fact it was never anything but wishful thinking on Churchill’s part. There were some deluded fools who persuaded themselves that there was a Special Relationship between the U.S. and Australia. These Special Relationships were nothing more than the relationships between an empire and its vassal states.

Australia no longer has anything but vague sentimental ties to Britain and even those ties are fading fast. Australia is also beginning to realise that its relationship to the U.S. is not particularly important and is going to become steadily less important.

Neither CANZUK nor CANZUKUS has anything to offer Australia. Australia would be well advised not to become entangled with failed states like Britain, and would be well advised also to distance itself from the U.S. Empire.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

the succession of western civilisations

When we talk about the problems facing the world today we find ourselves talking about the fate of western civilisation. I do it myself frequently. In actual fact there is no such thing as western civilisation. There have been a series of western civilisations, differing from each other very markedly indeed.

Even if we accept that there has ever been at any time a single European civilisation we still have to accept that the history of European civilisation is the history one civilisation succeeding another.

There was Bronze Age European civilisation (the Myceneans, the Minoans etc). They left some impressive ruins but we have little direct knowledge of them. The Minoans for example were literate but their written language has never been deciphered.

These civilisations were followed by the Classical Civilisation of the Greeks and Romans. In western Europe that collapsed entirely in the middle of the first millennium AD. 

Eventually a new civilisation took its place, the Medieval Civilisation. For at least two hundred years we have been taught to worship the Classical Civilisation and despise Medieval Civilisation. Quite wrongly. Medieval Civilisation was in many ways more advanced and more dynamic than Classical Civilisation.

Then came the catastrophe of the Reformation, followed by the even greater catastrophe of the Enlightenment. There was no sharp break, as there had been when the Western Roman Empire collapsed, but there is no question that the European civilisation of the ancien régime on the eve of the French Revolution was an entirely different civilisation compared to the Medieval Civilisation that had produced Dante and Chartres Cathedral. Despite cataclysms like the French Revolution that version of modern European Civilisation was still more or less intact in 1914. It has now gone forever. We now have what might be called postmodern European Civilisation.

Of course all civilisations change over time. The point I am making is that in the case of European civilisation the changes have been so profound and so far-reaching as to represent the replacement of one civilisation by another.

Whilst all civilisations do change most are based on the principle that while change can be beneficial stability is also very desirable. The Medieval Civilisation is the only European Civilisation that really valued stability. It was not in reality a stable civilisation but there was at least an appreciation of the notion that change was often a very bad thing indeed. The European Civilisations that followed the Medieval have not valued stability at all. In fact you could say of Postmodern European Civilisation (and of Modern European Civilisation as well) that it is a process rather than a thing. It is a process whereby everything that has been proven to work and to produce good results is trashed in favour of something new that may or may not work. European civilisation is a constant search for novelty. It's the sort of civilisation that might be produced by a society of precocious infants, constantly hurling their old toys out of the pram whilst crying for new ones.

So the problem with wanting to save European Civilisation is that any European Civilisation worth saving no longer exists. A civilisation that bases itself upon crude materialism, even cruder hedonism, a celebration of sexual degeneracy, the joyful trampling into the dust of the family, naked greed and the embrace of a variety of scientific, pseudoscientific and totally non-scientific superstitions is not a civilisation that I would consider to be worth saving.

Which means that the kind of conservatism that is based on the belief that we need to apply the brakes is worse than useless. If we are to have a civilisation that is worth saving we will first have to create one. That might mean hoping that what currently goes by the name of European Civilisation does not survive.

Friday, January 4, 2019

identity and subcultures


On various right-leaning forums people are always expressing their bewilderment that whites today don’t have a sense of white identity, or a sense of national identity. People seem to be especially surprised that white elites lack such a sense of identity. How can anyone not have an identity?

In fact white elites and aspiring elites (or wannabe elites) do have a sense of identity but it’s not based on ethnicity, race or tradition. Elites and wannabe elites identify as being members of the elite. They may also identify as members of the gay community or the arts community or the activist community. They may identify as antifa, or as Democrats or Labour supporters. They may even identify as belonging to the vegan community.The only ethnic identity recognised among the elites is Jewish identity but even that is not as strong as some on the alt-right suppose it to be.

What stands out about these identities is that they are mostly strongly class-based and they are artificial. They are not based on a shared history or culture. They are not even based on a clear-cut ideology. You will find a few who will tell you that they are marxists but you’ll soon discover that they know nothing but Marxism. They’ll you they believe in social justice but you’ll find that this is mostly status and/or virtue signalling. They will have great difficulty explaining exactly how social justice is going to work - social justice just means blaming white people and/or heterosexuals for every problem.

These are identities based on feelings. They allow people a sense of belonging but the main attraction is that they offer a feeling of moral and intellectual superiority and self-righteousness. They offer a warm inner glow.

It’s tempting to blame relentless propaganda in schools and the media. This is of course a major cause but this is not the only factor and the roots go back quite a long way. As far back as the 1950s we saw the beginnings of youth subcultures. There were the Teds or Teddy Boys in England, and later the Mods and the Rockers and later still the Skinheads. In Australia there were the Sharpies. And of course there the Hippies, followed by the Punks and the Goths. These were all attempts to create synthetic communities and they were an obvious sign that traditional communities were breaking down.

Interestingly enough the early youth subcultures were heavily working class, which may be an indication that working class communities were the first to begin to disintegrate. Teds and Mods were very much working class. This started to change at the end of the 60s. The Hippies were much more likely to be middle class. The Punks, despite their image, were often drawn from the middle class art school set. Goths seemed to have been predominantly middle class.

The two world wars obvious played a part in dissolving traditional communities but it may be that government policies in the post-war period also contributed. in Britain longstanding communities were broken up and the people relocated into new housing estates which soon became high-rise slums. Employment patterns were changing also with people more inclined to move to seek better jobs. Women were now a substantial part of the workforce with catastrophic results for the family. The nuclear family reigned supreme with extended families seen as old-fashioned and oppressive and boring.

There was of course a huge emphasis on consumerism while religion continued to decline.

People lost the connection to the places in which they were born and raised, and they lost the sense of wide-ranging family ties.

If traditional family and community ties start to decay it’s hardly surprising that people will also find it more difficult to feel a sense of regional identity, ethnic identity and national identity. People become alienated and without religion they become isolated individuals. It’s hardly surprising that they then try to construct artificial identities.

Friday, December 28, 2018

why white nationalism is a non-starter

Among the various groups who comprise the motley crew of political dissidence in the modern West the most notorious are the white nationalists. Their dream is of white ethnostates. There are many reasons why this notion is, perhaps unfortunately, totally fanciful and it’s worth looking at a few of them in detail.

First off white nationalists tend to blame immigrants for all their woes. It’s all the fault of the Mexicans or the Somalians or the Muslims or whatever. White nationalists often seem to have trouble comprehending that these immigrants are not invaders. They have not fought their way through our heavily fortified defences nor have they defeated our armies in the field. They have been brought here by our own leaders. They are here because our political leaders, business leaders, our media and our church leaders have decided that they should be here. In other words the fault lies with our own elites.

The second problem is that white nationalists do not understand how elites function and maintain themselves in power, and they do not comprehend the make-up of the alliances that keep allow elites to maintain their power.

The elites are predominantly white but they have zero white identity. Their entire identity is bound up with membership of the elites. For the elites class trumps race or ethnicity.

The elites are by definition a small group and to remain in power they need loyal servants. In the case of contemporary western globalist elites they get support from two sources, the Coalition of the Fringes and the wannabe elites. The Coalition of the Fringes is a term coined by Steve Sailer to describe the alliance of victim groups who provide the elites with the votes needed to maintain power whilst  retaining the appearance of democracy. Blacks, Hispanics, Muslims, the LGBT-whatever crowd, etc.

Since these groups seem to have few apparent interests in common how is the Coalition of the Fringes held together? Blogger Spandrell explains it with his theory of bioleninism. These groups are entirely dependent on the existing power structures. Without those power structures they’d have zero status and no money. They are loyal because they have no choice. They have nowhere else to go.

The key to Spandrell’s theory is that the elites don’t care that these followers are often of very limited competence if not entirely incompetent. What the elites want is not competence but loyalty. The absolute loyalty of people who have no other options.

Many of these people are white. The LGBT-whatever crowd are still mostly (although not entirely) white. They are white but they have no white identity. They identify as LGBT-whatever. The extremist feminists who live off the government and make up another part of the Coalition of the Fringes are still mostly (although not entirely) white. They are white but they have no white identity. They identify as feminists.

As well as the Coalition of the Fringes there are the wannabe elites. Academics, schoolteachers, bureaucrats, senior military officers, low-level media types etc. They are also entirely dependent on the existing power structures. Without those power structures they’d be without status and money. These groups are mainly white but again with zero white identity. They have thrown in their lot with the elites. They adopt what they perceive to be the values of the elites.

So even if by some magical process all the non-whites could be made to disappear you still would not have the utopian white paradise that white nationalists dream about. The white elites would not suddenly discover a sense of solidarity with working class and rural whites. The white elites would continue to hate and despise and fear the non-elite whites and the non-elite whites would continue to hate the elite whites. And you’d still have a society that reflected the values of the elites. You’d still have a decadent degenerate society of atomised individuals with no sense of common purpose.

White nationalists for the most part are so focused on race (and on Jewish conspiracies) that they fail to understand any of this. They fail to understand that their fantasy really is a fantasy. One of the few ho does get it is James Lawrence. His essay Contra Cosmopolitanism is very much worth reading.

Don't get me wrong. I do sympathise with some of the aims of white nationalists and I do think ethnostates are generally preferable to multicultural states. And I would certainly love to see an end to immigration. I just don't think the idea of white nationalism based on white racial solidarity is workable.

Meanwhile white nationalists frighten off the normies and make it difficult for any reality-based dissident movement to gain traction.

Sunday, December 23, 2018

Coming Apart French style

Interesting piece, The French, Coming Apart, from City Journal about French geographer/housing consultant Christophe Guilluy.

Housing is something that the dissident right all too often overlooks (apart from Steve Sailer who has always understood that it’s a crucial issue). The Left used to worry about housing but nowadays they’re not interested.

Guilluy describes the ethnic cleansing of working class native French from major cities like Paris. One of his strengths is that he understands that neither class cannot singlehandedly explain the destruction of countries like France but nor can race. You have to comprehend both class and race.

In cities like Paris the ethnic cleansing of native French neighbourhoods is not seen as a problem by the elites. That’s not because the victims of the ethnic cleansing are ethnically French. It’s because they are working class. As far as the French elites and middle class are concerned those working class people are no longer needed so they should just die.

Guilluy also talks about the fact that there is now not one bourgeoisie but two. That should have led to tensions within the elites but it hasn’t because the old money sort and the new tech economy sort are united by their hatred of the working class and their desire for cheap labour provided by immigrants who will work for starvation wages.

He has an interesting explanation for the fact that both old and new bourgeoisie consider themselves as being leftists. They are “the ‘glass-ceiling Left,’ preoccupied with redistribution among, not from, elites.”

The article is very much worth a read.

Hat tip to Nourishing Obscurity for finding this piece.

Friday, December 21, 2018

moral and immoral art

Oscar Wilde famously said that, “There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written, or badly written.” He was of course wrong. Wilde said many clever things but the fact that a statement is clever does not make it true. And of course Wilde was a degenerate so he had an axe to grind.

Books take a moral stance. That may be an explicitly moral or immoral stance, or they may pretend to be neutral. But if you’re neutral on the subject of morality then you’re taking a stance on the issue - you’re coming down on the side of scepticism on the issue of morality.

It’s the same with movies and television, and even the visual arts. Even landscape painting is not immune - pure landscape painting became popular with the rise of the Romantic movement and it was implicitly nature-worship and implicitly pagan.

Everyone has a position on moral issues. If you claim to be indifferent to morality then you’re taking the stance that morality doesn’t matter so effectively you’re casting your vote for amorality at the very least.

Of course there’s a world of difference between an artist or writer (or film-maker or musician) who tolerates or ignores immorality and one who actively promotes. The former can be accused of cynicism or even cowardice, but the latter is actively evil.

It also has to be remembered that today more than ever art and literature are seen as political acts. It’s very hard to be neutral. Art and literature are energetically used to undermine what is left of traditional morality. The question of the morality of art and literature matters very much.

Can a work of art or a book be great and still be immoral? Wilde was certainly partially correct - books are either well written, or badly written. An immoral book can be superbly well written. Perhaps it can even achieve greatness. But it’s still an immoral book. It’s still evil.

Can we afford to tolerate great art and literature that is actively evil? My view is that the history of the past century is pretty strong evidence that we cannot.