Friday, February 27, 2015

conservative political parties are part of the Leftist Establishment

If you’re a genuine conservative there is one delusion you must abandon. That is the idea that the existing “conservative” political parties offer any hope at all. They do not. 

The problem is not that they are currently led by weak ineffectual buffoons like David Cameron and Tony Abbott, or that the Republicans in the US keep picking wishy-washy presidential candidates. The problem is that the entire party organisations are composed of people who are in fact leftists. The conservative political parties are now part of the Leftist Establishment.

The trouble with David Cameron is not that he’s an incompetent clown. Cameron is achieving exactly what he set out to do. His objective was to turn the Conservative Party into a clone of the Labor Party. His objective was to pursue the same policies that a Labor Party government would have pursued. And he has succeeded. He has been, insofar as his own beliefs are concerned, a successful Prime Minister. The problem is that he has been a successful Labor Prime Minister. He has furthered the causes of socialism, political correctness, globalisation and multi-culturalism. He has continued the program begun by Tony Blair - the destruction of Britain as a nation state, the destruction of any meaningful opposition to the sacred cows of the Left, the conversion of Britain into a minor province of the EU, the destruction of British culture and tradition.

And it makes no difference whatsoever which candidate the Republicans run against Hillary Clinton in 2016. In the very unlikely event that they win they will pursue the same domestic policies that Obama has pursued. The only difference is that, given the influence of the neocon nutjobs in the Republican Party, a Republican president would be much more likely to involve the US in more futile and destructive wars. In fact a Republican president might well be considerably worse than Hillary Clinton. A Republican president might well accede to the crazed demands of the neocons and start a shooting war with Russia.

It’s the same story with Tony Abbott in Australia. He has been a bitter disappointment to conservatives but that’s because they made the mistake of thinking he was a conservative. He is a man of the Centre-Left, and veering more towards the Left than the Centre. The only thing that can be said in favour of Abbott is that he’s not as far to the Left as his leadership rival Malcolm Turnbull.

If we want to stop the western world from disappearing down the plug hole we will have to do it in spite of the established conservative parties. We will get zero help from them.

In the case of Britain the supreme irony is that there are people who are afraid that if they vote for UKIP they will be putting Ed Milliband into 10 Downing Street. In fact of course it makes zero difference whether David Cameron or Ed Milliband is Prime Minister. They are two leftist peas in a leftist pod. It makes zero difference whether the Conservatives or Labor win. Their objectives are in all essentials identical. The only good result for genuine conservatives would be the annihilation of the Conservative Party. The Conservative Party would then be faced with a choice between permanent political oblivion or re-inventing itself as an actual conservative party. There’s no doubt they will choose permanent political oblivion. And that would be a very good thing. It would leave room for a genuine conservative party to emerge.

The situation in the US is more difficult because of the rigid two-party system. The best option is probably simply to refuse to vote. If enough conservatives did that then the Republicans might face the same stark choice - oblivion or rediscovering some principles.

Perhaps the best option is to abandon hope in the political system altogether. Rely on pressure group politics. It worked for the homosexuals. Now they have both parties pandering to them.

Monday, February 23, 2015

why it’s worthwhile for conservatives to keep fighting

One of the things that conservatives find very disheartening is the apparent utter futility of trying to make leftists see sense or to accept reality. This means that most of the time we seem to be preaching to the choir. Other conservatives will listen to us but leftists never will. So if we can never get through to leftists aren’t all our efforts in vain?

The answer to this is that of course it’s futile to reason with leftists. It’s a complete waste of time. What we have to understand though is that the objective is not, or at least should not be, to aim our arguments at leftists. The people we need to reach are the half-hearted lukewarm conservatives, the ones who are inclined to compromise with the Left.

The problem is not that there are very few conservatives. There are actually lots of conservatives. But most of them have given up the fight and resigned themselves to surrender. They have made compromise after compromise. They have been retreating for so long that they’ve forgotten how to fight. The idea of making a stand on principle doesn’t occur to them because it’s been so long since they attempted such a thing. They have become accustomed to cowardice. You only have to look at the major “conservative” parties in very country. Their leaders are people to whom cowardice has become second nature. That does not however mean that there are no true conservatives left in those parties. There are still many among the rank and file. But they are leaderless and they are disillusioned. They have forgotten what it feels like to win a victory on an issue that really matters.

Even worse many have become so used to modern lukewarm conservatism that they have forgotten how to recognise the issues that really matter.

Even worse are the neocons, who have convinced themselves that the only things that matter are free markets and pursuing hawkish (and generally incoherent and deluded) foreign policies. They believe that if they surrender to the cultural marxists on every social issue they will be allowed to survive and that their beloved free markets will be permitted to survive. This is of course a pathetic delusion. It is a delusion shared by almost every large corporation. They think that if they support homosexual marriage and trans rights and feminism and anti-racism and every other leftist cause they will be left alone to go on making money. In the short term they may be right. In the long term they are dead wrong. The ultimate objective of the Left is absolute state control of every aspect of life, including business.

Genuine conservatives should not waste their energies on,leftists. What we need to do is to energise those lukewarm conservatives and put some backbone into them. Most of all we need to spread the message that every compromise made with the Left is a devil’s bargain. Every retreat, every surrender, simply makes the Left more extreme and more uncompromising. Historically in battle most casualties were inflicted when one side broke and ran. Running away is not the safest thing to do. It’s the most dangerous thing to do. The same holds true for political battles - those who will not stand their ground will be cut down unmercifully by the victorious leftist barbarians. The only hope of survival is to fight. 

A good general does not waste his time appealing to the enemy troops. He puts his energies into inspiring his own troops and convincing them that they can win. And our troops are in desperate need of inspiration and of hope and of leadership.

Monday, February 16, 2015

cracks in the Leftist wall?

One of the significant factors in the success of the Left in western countries over the past half century has been that their offensive has been decentralised. In the 50s it was easy to oppose the Left because it was monolithic - the Left’s objective was socialism and its objective was obvious.

By the 1960s the monolithic Left was fragmenting. This proved to be a huge advantage for them. Instead of having a single focus their agenda was increasingly advanced by an array of single-issue pressure groups which did not openly espouse socialism. The main pressure groups centred around multi-culturalism, LGBT-xyz issues, feminism and environmentalism although there were other smaller groups as well. These groups were able to disguise their real political agendas. Rather than talking about revolution and the overthrow of capitalism they were able to persuade people that all they wanted was “fairness” or “equality” or to save trees and cute furry animals. And how could any reasonable person oppose such high-minded intentions?

The name of the game now was socialism by stealth. Instead of saying they wanted  Soviet-style centralised state control they manufactured environmental crises which apparently could only be dealt with by increased government intervention. They pretended that these measures were necessary as emergency measures to “save the planet.” Instead of openly admitting that they wanted to take control of education they justified increasing government encroachments on the grounds that all they wanted was to stop “bullying” or “oppression.” They undermined the family, not openly but by using the argument that women’s “rights” had to be protected.

This decentralised approach has been enormously successful, so successful in fact that most ordinary people still have no idea that their freedoms have been eroded and that the apparatus of a police state has been quietly and surreptitiously assembled.

The reason that conservatives have lost every single battle in the culture wars is that there has been no clear-cut enemy to fight. The culture wars have been conducted by the left by the methods of guerilla war, or 4th-generation warfare if you like. Conservatives might well have won if there had ever been an open fight but they had no answer to the Left’s methods of incremental struggle in which their ultimate objectives well always well hidden.

While this decentralisation has been the key to the Left’s success it may also provide a means by which conservatives can fight back. The fact is that the various pressure groups which comprise the modern Left are not as united as they seem to be. In many cases they are actually pursuing incompatible aims.

The most obvious case is multi-culturalism. Leftist politicians like Tony Blair thought they had pulled off a political master-stroke by importing a whole new electorate that would keep them in power forever. In fact they’ve imported a whole new electorate that is utterly hostile to many of their cherished schemes. Muslim immigrants in Britain and Hispanics in the US do not give a damn about homosexual marriage or climate change, and they are not exactly enthused about LGBT “rights” or feminism. 

Sooner or later leftist parties like the Democrats in the US or the Labor Party in Britain will realise that hanging on to the votes of the immigrants in the long term will not be as easy as they thought. What if the immigrants start voting for their own political parties, parties focused much more explicitly on their own interests and actively hostile to much of the cultural marxist agenda? The only way to prevent this might be by quietly dropping support for LGBT rights and feminism and crazy green policies. If Hispanic voters or British Muslim voters outnumber the guilt-ridden gay-friendly environmentally conscious white liberals then those parties might decide to ditch their support for policies that immigrant voters don’t like.

When that happens the LGBT and feminist and green lobbies might suddenly find their enthusiasm for multi-culturalism evaporating.

One thing that has united all leftist groups is their absolute opposition to freedom of speech. The Charlie Hebdo shootings have been an unpleasant intrusion of reality into the leftist narrative.

The agendas of other leftist pressure groups are not necessarily compatible either. There have been some amusingly vicious cat-fights between trans “women” and feminists in recent years. 

So there are a few cracks starting to appear in the leftist alliance.

At the moment multi-culturalism seems to be the issue most likely to cause these cracks to widen. Conservatives need to take advantage of this opportunity to split their opponents and to expose the hypocrisy and short-sightedness of the Left.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

cultural marxist science

No sane person doubts that cultural marxism is now the ruling ideology of our society. The cultural marxist agenda was firstly to take control of education and the mass media. That objective was achieved decades ago. What was more unexpected was that science would be the next target. What was even more unexpected is that that objective has now been largely achieved. 

The “social sciences” were of course the first targets. These “sciences” being basically unscientific to start with it was not difficult to take them over. In the 1970s the cultural marxists saw another opportunity. Environmentalism, being largely emotional and irrational, provided an ideal chance to extend their conquests into more respectable scientific domains. They captured the environmental movement quickly and completely but it was obvious that it was not enough merely to push the new leftist environmentalism through the schools and the media. If environmentalism could be made to look scientific it would be an even more useful tool.

What was needed was something that sounded scientific to begin with. Panics about environmental catastrophes would be absolutely ideal. The first attempt was the “population bomb” panic but that started to run out of steam rather quickly. The “hole in the ozone layer” looked promising but it proved to be too easy to demonstrate its silliness. Climate panics were much more suitable. Almost nothing was known about long-term variations in climate. In the 70s a few scientists had suggested that we were heading for a new Ice Age. That had possibilities but it was difficult to argue that it was our fault, since Ice Ages occur regularly and naturally. Something was needed that would allow the Left to blame capitalism and to exploit the feelings of guilt to which Europeans were particularly prone. If global warming had not existed it would have had to be invented. In fact it was invented. It was never based on more than the vague speculations of a few scientists on the lunatic fringe. 

What was so wonderful about this invented and entirely imaginary threat was that climate science was an obscure corner of the scientific world. That afforded the opportunity for cultural marxists not just to exploit their imaginary threat but to use it to take control of an entire field of science. Since climate science was so obscure and so unimportant it would be easy to hijack it since climate scientists could be won over by the promise of funding on a scale they had never dared to dream about. Pretty soon climate science was a large and very rich corner of science with countless climate scientists all of whose careers depended on stoking the fires of hysteria. If a climate scientist came to the conclusion that global warming was nonsense then politicians would be inclined to ask why they were wasting so much money funding his research. But if he argued that it was a horrific and deadly and imminent threat he could look forward to getting even more funding. Scientists are just as human as anyone else, and just as prone to feathering their own nests as any other group of people.

Once climate science was well and truly established as political science with rich rewards for those who followed the party line it would be easy to eliminate any backsliders who dared to express doubts. They could be dealt with by the time-honoured leftist methods of bullying and intimidation.

This success inspired the Left to expand their colonisation of science. Scientists proved to be ridiculously easy to intimidate. Other areas of science were clearly ripe for the picking. The behavioural sciences and evolutionary biology have been brought firmly under leftist control. Try being an evolutionary biologist who dares to suggest that maybe human evolution did not stop 50,000 years ago and that maybe genetics have some influence on intelligence and see how long it is before you lose your academic position and find yourself driving cabs for a living.

If you’re a scientist today and you’d like to go on working as a scientist you learn to be very very careful before opening your mouth. Anything that could possibly be interpreted as sexist, racist, homophobic, transphobic, islamophobic, ableist, or any other category of Thought Crime could end your career. What matters is not whether your science is valid; what matters is that you hold the correct political beliefs. Science is now so thoroughly politicised that any statement by a scientist on any subject has to be regarded with suspicion.

Friday, February 6, 2015

It’s all the fault of the Jews. Or is it?

Anti-semitism is certainly on the rise, and has been for several decades. On the left it’s usually disguised as anti-zionism. On the right it’s more open and honest, although more disturbing. And it almost always takes the form of a conspiracy theory.

One of the more popular conspiracy theories is that cultural marxism is a Jewish plot. The problem with this conspiracy theory is that it doesn’t make a lot of sense and I’m going to try to explain why. 

Let’s take a look at the program of cultural marxism and see how it benefits, or harms, the Jews. 

Cultural marxism is hostile to capitalism. Jews on the whole have done quite well out of capitalism. Cultural marxists hope to see a radical redistribution of wealth. Since Jews are generally speaking more prosperous than non-Jews a redistribution of wealth would hurt Jews rather than help them.

Cultural marxism just loves multi-culturalism. Cultural marxists are very keen on importing huge numbers of Third Worlders into western countries. As a result of this Jews have fallen from 3.7% of the US population in the 1940s to around 2% today. What was once a potentially very powerful voting bloc is now much less significant. How precisely does this further the supposed Jewish thirst for power? A very large proportion of Third World immigrants comprise people who are fanatically hostile to Jews. How does this serve the interests of Jews?

Jews comprise a steadily shrinking percentage of the population of Britain, standing today at just 0.5%. In France the figure is 0.75%. In France Moslems comprise somewhere between 5 and 10 percent of the population; in Britain the figure is 4.4% (and in England it’s 5%). A policy that has seen Jewish minorities become steadily more insignificant while minorities that are potentially (and in many cases actually) hostile to Jews have grown exponentially does not seem to be to be a very impressive success for a Jewish conspiracy.

Cultural marxism is extremely hostile to Christianity, but I can’t recall recently hearing any cultural marxists express admiration for Judaism. The aim of cultural marxism is the triumph of atheism. That’s not good news for Jews since the Jews’ identity as a distinctive people is largely (although not wholly) dependent on at least a nominal shared faith.

Cultural marxists detest tradition. Tradition is another factor that is vital for the maintenance of a distinctive Jewish identity.

Cultural marxists reserve their most virulent hatred for the family. The family always has been and always will be absolutely central and absolutely crucial to preserving Jewish identity.

So taken all in all cultural marxism can only be catastrophic for the Jews as a people. It might benefit individual Jews but if we’re to take the international Jewish conspiracy seriously it must surely be a program to advance the interests of Jews as a whole rather than a few individuals.

Of course it is undeniably true that many Jews are cultural marxists. Many white Europeans are cultural marxists as well even though it’s an ideology that seeks to destroy European civilisation. The presence of Jews among the cultural marxist hordes simply proves that Jews are as prone to delusion, self-hatred and crippling (and entirely inappropriate) guilt as white Europeans. Jews who support the agenda of cultural marxism are supporting an agenda that will destroy them, just as white Europeans who support the agenda of cultural marxism are supporting an agenda that will destroy them. The Jews probably have a lot more to lose than white people.

Many of the founders of cultural marxism were certainly Jews. The Frankfurt School was dominated by Jewish intellectuals. But were these Jewish intellectuals motivated by a desire to achieve world domination by the Jews, or were they almost entirely Jewish intellectuals who hated their own race, their own religion, their own traditions, their own families and most of all themselves? To me the latter seems far more likely, given that intellectuals as a breed are notable mostly for hating their own race, their own civilisation, their own traditions, their own families and most of all themselves.

There are plenty of stupid Jews, plenty of short-sighted Jews, plenty of Jews psychologically disfigured by guilt and self-hatred, plenty of Jews willing to work for cultural marxism and against their own long-term interests. That does not imply that Jews are working to some nefarious Jewish master plan. There are equally plentiful numbers of stupid, short-sighted, psychologically crippled white Europeans who are working just as energetically for cultural marxism and against their own people. Does that mean that cultural marxism is a white European conspiracy to destroy white European civilisation?

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

social conservatism, political ideologies and human nature

There seems to be a widespread assumption that if only we can pick the correct political ideology to adopt then we will have found the magical answer that will ensure perpetual happiness. Unfortunately there is no evidence that this is so.

The trouble is that all political ideologies work remarkably well in theory. Communism works just dandy in theory. Everyone is equal, everything is fair and just. In practice it has always led to the creation of huge, inefficient, corrupt, self-serving and oppressive bureaucracies and brutal murderous totalitarianism. There is no reason to think this will ever change.

Libertarianism works equally well in theory. Everyone is motivated by enlightened rational  self-interest and everyone is self-reliant and everyone enjoys the bliss of complete freedom. In practice self-interest is rarely enlightened or rational, not everyone can achieve complete self-reliance, and freedom tends to lead to chaos and viciousness.

The free market works just great in theory. In practice markets never really seem to turn out to be so free after all and corporations behave cynically and selfishly and without any regard for the future.

The welfare state is a terrific idea in theory. No-one need ever have to fear poverty. Unfortunately in practice it leads to the creation of those huge, inefficient, corrupt, self-serving and oppressive bureaucracies mentioned earlier and it leads to dependence and demoralisation.

The trouble is that in practice every political ideology runs into the same problem - people steadfastly refuse to behave the way the theory assumes they will behave. People are irrational and motivated largely by emotion and often behave in a depressingly short-sighted manner. If only we could dispense with people we could create such a wonderful perfect society.

It appears to me that the problem is that political ideologies on their own will never provide an answer unless they are underpinned by a moral framework that will lessen the natural human tendency towards short-sightedness, selfishness and self-indulgence.

A moral framework requires religion. In the past century we have seen many attempts to provide a moral framework without religion, with either the state or nature or some abstract ideal (like “social justice”) taking the place of God. They have all failed. Without religion morality inevitably degenerates into whatever you can get away with.

I personally have no very strong commitment to any political ideology. I think capitalism is the most effective engine for creating prosperity and while prosperity on its own is no guarantee of happiness it certainly helps.

Looking at the Australian experience (because being an Australia that’s what I have the most experience of) it seems to me that two of our more successful prime ministers have been Sir Robert Menzies and Bob Hawke. Both were, in practice, pragmatists who were prepared to accept a degree of compromise. Menzies was a conservative but he was prepared to tolerate the existence of a limited welfare state. Hawke was a socialist but he accepted the reality that capitalism is very good at increasing prosperity so he encouraged a free market, within limits. Australia did quite well under both Menzies and Hawke. 

I identify as a conservative but my conservatism is mostly of the social conservative variety. I approve of capitalism but I’m suspicious of free markets in any absolutist terms. I think an almost entirely free market would work reasonably well without globalisation but within the context of globalisation I suspect that completely free markets will lead to economic chaos. Free marketeers are fond of talking about level playing fields but global markets (for either goods and services or labour) are playing fields that are about as far from being level as could possibly be imagined. My view is that given globalisation totally free markets are not going to work anywhere near as well as the theory says they will.

I have no problems with a welfare state as long as it’s kept within reasonable bounds. People were not created equal and therefore I feel that a limited welfare state is unavoidable.

For me social conservatism is the key. You have to have religion to provide a moral framework (and to satisfy the inescapable human need for religion). You have to have a respect for tradition, if only to discourage ill-considered attempts at social engineering. You need to place the family at the centre of society because the whole of human history tells us that family life is essential for human happiness. The family is also the best way to keep the welfare state within limits. Hedonism produces chaos and misery (the Weimar Republic being a fine example of that). Sexual perversion and sexual excess produces emptiness and loneliness.

If you have social conservatism, if you have religion, then it probably doesn’t matter too much which political ideology you opt for as long as you avoid unworkable nightmares like communism and as long as your political ideology is tempered with pragmatism.

Monday, February 2, 2015

The Great Game: On Secret Service in High Asia

Peter Hopkirk’s The Great Game: On Secret Service in High Asia is a fascinating and exhaustive account of the political rivalry between Russia and Britain in central Asia in the 19th century. The book was published in 1990 with a revised edition appearing in 2006.

This rivalry, a kind of cold war that often threatened to turn into a hot war, was a result of the northward expansion of Britain’s Indian empire coming into collision with the southward and eastward expansion of Imperial Russia’s Central Asian empire. It took the form of complex efforts to increase the influence of both powers in crucial buffer states like Afghanistan as well as attempts to annex various territories outright. It was conducted partly by professional intelligence officers, partly by army officers and partly by enthusiastic amateurs. The term The Great Game was coined by a British officer in the 1840s although it did not come into general usage until the publication of Rudyard Kipling’s superb 1901 novel Kim. Kipling’s novel is the most famous, and without question the best, fictional account of this epic struggle.

The real-life Great Game could be a very dangerous game indeed. Many participants, both Russian and British, lost their lives in this struggle, often in horrifying circumstances. For a European in the 19th century to meddle in the political affairs of places like Afghanistan was exceptionally perilous. 

The crux of the matter was India. The British were convinced that Russian expansionism had as its ultimate aim the conquest of India, and Britain in the 19th century was prepared to go to extraordinary lengths to safeguard India. In actual fact it is extremely unlikely that Russia ever had any serious intentions of trying to conquer India. On the other hand it certainly suited Tsarist Russia for the British to believe in the threat to India. Britain’s sensitivity in this regard could be potentially useful in gaining a free hand for the objective that really obsessed the Russians - Constantinople. 

The most striking thing about the Great Game is the extraordinary parallel to the world of the early 21st century. The British in the 19th century were never able to put themselves in the Russians’ shoes and to see things from the Russian perspective. They imagined that if what mattered most to them was India then clearly that must also be what mattered most to the Russians. The possibility that Russia’s agenda might be quite different and that it might be largely defensive never occurred to them. The British were also quite unable to appreciate that Russia’s history, and particularly the subjugation of medieval Russia by the Mongols, might prompt the Russians to want to ensure that never again would they be threatened from this quarter. To the Russians it seemed eminently reasonable to secure their frontiers with friendly or at least subservient buffer states. This chronic misunderstanding of Russian policy finds its echo today in the complete inability of the west to look at eastern Europe from the Russian point of view and the complete inability to comprehend that Russia’s history makes her somewhat obsessive desire for security perfectly understandable.

Hostility to Russia on the part of Britain was driven to a large degree by the hysterical and unreasoning Russophobia of the British press, just as hostility to Russia today is driven to a huge extent by the equally hysterical Russophobia of the western mass media. The Russian Tsars were demonised in the British press in exactly the same manner in which Putin is today demonised by the western media.

Hopkirk’s book is admirably even-handed. He has no interest in demonising either side. Both sides were motivated by complex mixtures of fear, suspicion, opportunism and ambition. The men who risked their lives on both sides in this rivalry were often idealistic and were always courageous and resourceful. They were larger-than-life heroes, in an age that still appreciated heroes.

A stimulating and highly entertaining book. Highly recommended.