Tag Archives: alt right

Trump and Neocons

Libertarian-leaning pundits are complaining about Trump.

Another Four Years Of Pointless War Under The Trump Administration

On Military and Spending, It’s Trump Versus Trump

Trump Is the Enemy of Neocons, But He’s Not Our Friend

Is McCain Hijacking Trump’s Foreign Policy?

Trump ran (or at least was perceived) as being anti-neocon, and his voters saw him as being a repudiation of ‘politics as usual’ and the back-to-back disappointments of Bush and Obama. But dissonance between voter expectations and Trump’s policies may lead to disillusionment.

How different from neocons are Trump and Bannon really. As the articles above suggest, probably not that much. Trump and neocons agree on defense spending, hawkish foreign policy, closeness with financial industry, deregulation, low taxes, and so on. Trump and necons differ to some degree in terms of immigration and protectionism, but time will tell if Trump implements substantive reform–or if this is all just smoke, mirrors, and ‘symbolic gestures’ that get a lot of media attention but don’t move the needle much. Some say Trump is anti-globalist–I would say he’s doing a good job acting or conveying anti-globalist sentiment; doing is harder.

This is the problem with politics: people equate talk with action, and then decades later wonder why nothing has really changed or keeps getting worse. The purpose of politics is to create the illusion of change.

Also, as many already know, Trump appointed several Wall St. guys to his cabinet, and there may be some dissonance in having to reconcile Trump’s anti-establishment public imagine with his pro-establishment cabinet. For example there is former Goldman COO Gary Cohn, who leads Mr Trump’s National Economic Council. And Steven Mnuchin, a hedge fund millionaire. Trump’s choice of cabinet picks may impede the ability to pass sweeping trade reform, assuming Trump really wants that (it’s hard to know what Trump really wants…he seems to be shooting all over the place…going after immigration on one week; Obamacare and wiretapping on another, etc.).

Trump’s rationale is that he chose appointees whom he knew personally, that are competent enough to carry out their designated jobs, and have private sector experience, versus academia.

The media always exaggerates how high the stakes really are. Contrary to the media and pundit narrative of Trump and neocons being locked in some of sort comic-book-like epic battle to the death, neocons are probably blase to Trump trying to restrict immigration…they are happy just to have more defense spending, lower taxes, and a Republican in the Oval Office instead of a Democrat.

Politics is mostly a waste of time…Every few years, it’s another healthcare bill. And if Trump loses in 2020 or 2024, the dems will undo it and try to reinstate their own healthcare again, ad infinitum. The NRx position is that politics is the problem, not the solution. [1] Politics creates problems that leads to even more politics to try to fix the prior problems created by politics. And this is anther reason why democracy is a waste: so much money and time is wasted undoing changes made by the ‘other’ party, instead just ‘formalizing’ everything. The only guarantees are that healthcare costs will rise and a lot of people will be unhappy, regardless of whose plan is implemented.

Same for the news…another waste of time. Every year it’s the same stories, only the names occasionally change. If the people who normally don’t talk about the news are suddenly talking about the news, then the story is probably important; otherwise, it’s just noise. If you surround yourself with ‘news people’, everything will seem important. People who read celebrity gossip may be ignorant, but they aren’t really missing anything either. The auto-pilot, deterministic American economy and society means minimal individual input is necessary.

Neoconservatism and neoliberalism succeed because they are amorphous, adaptable, and can latch onto or hijack any preexisting ideology or movement. Most governments, given enough time, will resemble something similar to neoconservatism or neoliberalism (this is what Fukuyama alluded to in End of History, but I don’t think it has to be liberal democracy–it can also be a right-wing republic, theocracy, technocracy, or oligarchy. Whatever you call it, the mixed-economy system tends to prevail to varying degrees. It’s not ‘The End of History’, but more like ‘The End of Economics’).

By subscribing to wishful thinking, you willingly deprive yourself of understating. If knowledge is power, you become weaker. This is why the ‘fake news’ movement has been so successful and is hurting the left so badly, because after many decades of the public being fooled, the liberal media’s veneer of ‘impartial, objective journalism’ has been peeled off, revealing the media as an apparatus for liberalism (or what some call the ‘deep state’) that it really is. But we also shouldn’t engage in own versions of fake news.

Trump is not too much different from your typical Republican…he doesn’t have special powers that many ascribe to him, to single-handedly undo decades of history and economics. . Its not defeatism to be realistic about what a president can and can’t reasonably do. Time to stop looking for Messiahs and instead start looking to ourselves for the answers. One solution is minimalism and self-sufficiency, which is why personal finance is important.

[1] It’s a source of confusion for some the differences between the alt-right and NRx. NRx is post-politics, which is why NRx blogs typically don’t follow day-to-day political developments such as Trump, instead focusing on ‘deeper’ topics such as economics, theology, and political philosophy. The alt-right actively engages in politics. The alt-right sees politics as a vehicle for change, which is why they follow politics so intently and also why they have more more ‘faith’ in Trump, versus NRx. NRx seeks to remove the underling fabric that is democratic society; alt-right wants a different type of fabric. NRx and the alt-right agree on many issues, but the NRx approach/implementation to attaining such goals is different.

The Alt-Right Punches Way Above Its Weight

New post by Spandell Find the Symmetry:

Funny thing is, the dark side of the Internet is a small, tiny little thing. Really. Neoreaction is, what, 1,000 people? Spread around the whole world. 75% in the US, maybe. And the alt-right, which has inherited much of good ol’ national-socialism, is what, 20,000 people? I love those guys, I really do. Frog Twitter is hilarious. /pol/ is very funny. But come on. Even Steve Sailer, who has been writing for decades, who is a middle-class, 50+ old, utterly middlebrow guy who writes in very accessible language, who writes about sports! Steve Sailer has 13,000 followers on Twitter. Ezra Klein has 1.6 million. Ezra Klein, that doofus-looking doofus. Even Matthew Yglesias, whose picture is in English phrasebooks to explain the phrase “his face looks like a joke”, has 270k followers. The alt-right is beyond small. Trump didn’t win because of the alt-right. He won because he got 60 million Fox News watchers to vote for him.

But media isn’t talking about the at-right much anymore. Now they are focused on healthcare. The media overgeneralizes the alt-right to mean anything to the right of National Review and newer than Pat Buchanan and Ron Paul. Twitter follower counts don’t mean much anyway, unless your following is organic. Most of these corporate media accounts have a lot of useless/bot followers and little engagement relative to the number of followers. 1.6 million followers and 99% of them inactive or robots. Steve has only 13k followers, but 1/2 the number of ‘retweets’ and ‘favorites’ as Ezra, who has 1.6 million. Steve’s Unz columns generate massive page views and comments…more than a typical New York Times columnist. He usually writes three posts a day, and each one gets dozens or even hundreds of comments, making him one of the most influential columnists alive.

The Alt Right punches way above its weight. The MSM media, outside of finance, isn’t that influential and punches way below its perceived weight. The MSM is a paper tiger…fake/useless Twitter followers, headlines that are forgotten hours after being published, faux SJW outrage, etc. Yeah, the WSJ and New York Times finance sections pack a serious punch (because they are followed by billionaires and other important people who can move markets), but the other parts of the paper not so much. Most people don’t know or care about politics…they just care about what’s on TV and supporting their ‘team’, whether it be the ‘red’ team or the ‘blue’ team. Most of those who voted for Trump would have done so anyway, with or without Fox News. Even if the GOP ran a ham sandwich and did no campaigning, it would have still gotten at least 45% of the national vote; ditto for the Democratic party if it ran a tuna melt. Due to the electoral college, election victories are decided on the margin–the 5% who are undecided in key swing states, and the alt-right may have played a pivotal role in tipping the election in Trump’s favor in these states. Trump won Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Florida and other battleground states, in an otherwise very close election.

And this is why the left is scared..because they know that their media cannot deliver election victories and has dwindling power. The people who read New York Times columns are zoned-out and unengaged. Alt-right people are engaged, and each alt-righter is like 10,000 NYTs-reading zombies. Milo, who is in his 30′s, has Instagram account, and each post has thousands of likes…does any New York Times columnist have anything comparable to that? No. Liberals, especially, baby boomer ones of the New York Times demographic, are out of touch, out of times, clinging to their 60′s-era socialist/communist dreams.

The power of the alt-right is not to directly influence policy but rather to influence sentiment

There is a belief held by some that the alt-right, in making certain gestures and comments, is losing ‘respectability’ and therefore risks being excluded from having influence on Trump’s policies. This notion that Trump actually cares what the alt-right thinks is of course nonsense and is just more ‘concerning’ by people who don’t understand the alt-right or want the alt-right to become ‘alt-lite’. Trump already chose his cabinet and advisers, and will do his own thing. Even before the NPI Roman salute dust-up, Trump expressed zero interest in deferring to alt-right leaders on anything. Soon after, Trump repudiated the alt-right. The alt-right helped Trump get elected, but Trump is listening to his appointees, not Spencer, Baked Alaska or anyone else involved with the alt-right. Personally, I wish Trump cared more about the alt-right, but that’s wishful thinking. But the alt-right should not dilute its message in the faint hope of opening a dialogue with Trump: not gonna happen. Media respectability is not important: a message that resonates with people is, and by linking or associating Trump with the alt-right (even though Trump himself doesn’t care for the alt-right), helped get Trump elected because voters saw Trump as being a conveyor of alt-right principles. The power of the alt-right is not to directly influence policy but rather to influence sentiment. It’s the choice of policy makers to choose whether to heed the sentiment or not.

Alt Right Power Struggle

The ongoing alt-right ‘civil war’ is an example how how activism fails in the absence of a unifying cohesive goal and or concentrated power.

Between 2015 and 2016, thousands of anonymous posters on 4chan, Twitter, and Reddit collectively worked on the same goal – getting Trump in office. Although they were loosely organized, they were unified in trying to get Trump elected. Now that Trump won, no one knows what to do. A this pent-up enthusiasm and energy in the weeks since Trump’s victory has been released – on each other. This problem is compounded by the fact that the alt-right, although it’s under the category of ‘conservatism’, is very ideologically diverse. You have alt-White (daily stormer, the right stuff), alt-lite, alt-trad, etc. Some are Christians, some are lapsed, and others are atheists or agnostics. Some seek revolution; others seek self-improvement. Some care about the ‘JQ’…others don’t. Some lean libertarian; others are national-socialists.

A problem with activism is it attracts people who want power, who are sometimes the least qualified, and then it breaks down into a power struggle between warring factions trying to ‘own’ the alt-right, or witch-hunts against those who are not ‘alt-right enough’ resulting in holiness spirals, purity/shit tests, and virtue signaling. This is similar to the Salem Switch Trials, a historical example of an out of control holiness spiral which ended when the governor of the Massachusetts colony, Sir William Phips, upon his wife as being accused of witchcraft, ordered (upon exercising his power) an end to the trials and pardoned the accused. In the absence of some sort of concentrated power or authority, the colony fell into chaos.

Trump’s political campaign ‘worked’, despite being activism, because people were given specific tasks, everyone had the same objective (of getting Trump in office), and the hierarchy – from strategists at the top to the ‘footsoliers’ at the bottom – was inviolable, much in the same way as a large corporation.

Because NRx and the Dark Enlightenment are ideas and concepts, not a movement or political party, no one can claim ‘ownership’ it, thus avoiding the ‘power grab’ problem.

Overall, Baked Alaska came out ahead and Mike was knocked down a peg. The alt-right is not going away, and eventually the in-fighting will end as soon as they find another cause to rally behind or when the excitement dies down.

Identity, IQ, and Incoherence of the Alt-Right

‘Identity’, which not limited to just politics but also includes ‘BLM’ and the ‘big is beautiful’ movement, gives its members a stake in something, as being a part of a bigger ‘system’ or ‘process’, yet at the same time individualism and autonomy are retained. Identity is a way of signalling unity, with varying degrees obviousness. When taken too far, it can appear narcissistic, vulgar, and self-absorbed, as identity gives cover and justification for anti-social behavior. This is what 3-4th wave feminism has become, especially online.

There is also a distinction between individual identity (example: individualism; identifying as belonging to a specific gender, ethnicity, and race) and collective identity (examples: nationalism; gender, ethnicity, and race as group identities and as part of political and social movements).

Neoconservatives and neoliberals tend to eschew collective identity, in favor of pragmatism and ‘concern’ (in contrast to tribalism, where consensus and loyalty, and ‘collective identity’ are more important). When taken too far, this can seem paternalist, meddlesome, and overbearing, but also emotionally detached, amoral, and disloyal. Like, why do neocons and neoliberals alike care so much about third world poverty when there is poverty in America?

1st and 2nd wave feminism has a strong element of ‘collective identity’. It’s very collectivist and activist-minded, with lots of protests, political involvement, and marches. 3-4th wave feminism is much more individualistic in the spirit of Ayn Rand, who advocated self-determination over collectivism. This includes women prostituting themselves on Instagram. Although 3-4th wave is more vulgar, 1-2nd wave is worse because of the deleterious political and social consequences of suffrage.

Jonathan Haidt, Jonathan Chait, Scott Sumner, Nicholas Kristof, Josh Barro, and Matthew Yglesias come to mind as examples of left-wing or neoliberal pundits who use reductionist narratives, but I don’t mean reductionist in the ‘low-information’ sense but rather in trying to reduce ‘social theory’ to something that is science-like, and who often advocate democracies and committees by elites (elitism) to solve problems. Unlike the far-let, it’s often anti-populist, and like neoconservatism, it’s pragmatic and consequentialist.

Among rationalists and pragmatists, these is also a tendency to scorn those in their ‘tribe’ who are ‘too extreme’ and also to argue on behalf of one’s ideological opponents by ascribing the strongest arguments to them (also known as ‘steel-manning’, in contrast to straw-manning). Playing devil’s advocate signals intellect and open-mindedness to other members of the tribe, who also value those traits, and thus the status one who exhibits those traits is boosted among like members of the tribe. There is a tendency among some in the alt-right and especially rationalists to do this – but this is common in most high-IQ communities, where accuracy and correctness is more important than unanimity. It’s almost a ‘game’ of sorts where whoever finds an inaccuracy, counterexample, omission, or logical fallacy in the article first, ‘wins’ and is awarded with status (this seems common in pro-gamergate sub-Reddits, where there is a lot of ‘concerning’ (to show concern, often excessive or unnecessary, used as a verb), but it’s hard to tell if it’s genuine concern or concern trolling). Less intelligent tribes value unanimity, and status is through seniority and strength, not intellect, correctness, or open-mindedness. In less intelligent tribes, there is a definite hierarchy, and the ‘elders’ tell the initiates what to think, and there isn’t much room for interpretation, and dissenters, no matter how correct or smart they are, are ejected, not awarded status.

Related: I Can Tolerate Anything Except Factual Inaccuracies

Steel-manning is both good and bad: it’s good because by anticipating our opponent’s best possible counter-arguments, we can formulate stronger arguments for our own positions; it’s also annoying at times because sometimes enough is enough..there is only so much charity one can ascribe to one’s opponent without turning coat. It can also come across as virtue signaling. Unless the inaccuracy or omission is really egregious, maybe it’s just best to leave it alone, for the sake expediency instead of getting bogged by minutia and hair splitting, which sometimes results in incoherence and division of the tribe. But debate is generally healthy and should be encouraged.

This dicuss comment thread is an example. Back in 2009-2010 when I used to troll Huffington Post, I recall there was a lot of cohesion (everyone was on the same ‘page’ (cons bad, libs good)), which you don’t see as much in the far-right, even before the whole NPI-debacle.

Speaking of division, a month after the whole NPI Roman salute thing, now this: Alt-Right in Civil War After Prominent Leader Disinvited From Pro-Trump ‘DeploraBall’

And from the discuss comments:

Check the comments out. People should be fucking embarrassed of themselves. Barely edgy news site commentators have the correct instincts and actually understand the basis of politics in distinguishing friend from foe. Meanwhile so many people who tout themselves as hardcore right-wingers throw a bitchfit because they were always just liberals.

This is because people who post on mainstream news sites are, in general, less intelligent those who read and post on alt-right websites and blogs, so in the former there is more unity, as I noticed on Huffington Post for the far-left. When Trump was running, the alt-right could cast aside their differences and unify behind him, but with Trump elected, now what?

This incoherence is due to three factors: the ‘right’ generally being smarter and less conformist than the ‘left’ (more willing to challenge authority, more open-minded, better-educated about history, political science, and philosophy); second, the ‘right’ being more diverse, ideologically, than the ‘left’ (Liberalism is analogous to those 8-color Crayola crayon boxes kindergartners use. Conservatism is like the 100-color deluxe box.); and third, ego, which has less to with ideology and more to do with status-seeking.

The ‘right’ is split between the age-old individualism vs. traditionalism schism, whereas the ‘left’ seem to all agree on things like ‘maximizing individual liberty’ (positive liberties) and ‘promoting equality, fairness, and opportunity’(example: John Rawls Theory of Justice, although there is a small schism between classical liberals vs. welfare and socialist liberals. The former seek equal opportunity, and the latter seek equal outcomes). The ‘right’ promotes ‘negative liberties’ and individualism (example: Anarchy, State, and Utopia, by Robert Nozick), but traditionalism says that man is part of a ‘collective’ – state, family, creed, lineage, nation, religion, etc., so it gets messy in choosing the optimal balance between the two (just compare neoconservatism with paloeconservatism with right-nationalism with libertarianism). ‘Mainstream conservatism’ balances the two, as described by Russell Kirk’s six “canons” of conservatism (which heavily influenced post-WW2 American conservatism):

A belief in a transcendent order, which Kirk described variously as based in tradition, divine revelation, or natural law;

An affection for the “variety and mystery” of human existence;

A conviction that society requires orders and classes that emphasize “natural” distinctions;

A belief that property and freedom are closely linked;

A faith in custom, convention, and prescription, and

A recognition that innovation must be tied to existing traditions and customs, which entails a respect for the political value of prudence.

Krik also opposed the separation of church and state…”that Christianity and Western Civilization are “unimaginable apart from one another”[13] and that “all culture arises out of religion. When religious faith decays, culture must decline, though often seeming to flourish for a space after the religion which has nourished it has sunk into disbelief.”[14]”

Kirk was inspired by Edmund Burke, considered to be the forefather of conservatism. Burke’s views are kinda scattershot, opposing the ‘social contract’ theory but also opposing the ‘divine right of kings’. He opposed democracy, natural law, and the French Revolution but also supported the America Revolution and believed private property as being essential to maintaining ‘social order’.

Liberalism is inherently materialistic (although it does embrace some idealism in its rejection of certain aspects of HBD), but conservatism can be both materialistic and idealistic. Part of the reason why NRx departs from Kirk is because conservatism tends to embrace natural law and puts too much emphasis on individual rights. Conservatism doesn’t hold the monarchy supreme, although Burke was sympathetic to it despite being a Whig and not a Jacobite. Materialistic-variants of conservatism put too much emphasis on economics over the divine. For the ‘right’, man should maximize his economic share through self-determination; for the far-left, the state should assume that role; in either case, it’s still through the lens of economics (Economic determinism).

Both liberalism and conservatism seeks to find a balance between individualism (and individual identity) and collectivism (and collectivist identity), which is what the study of political science and political philosophy is about. The cohesion of the alt-right before Trump’s victory and the small splintering of the alt-right afterward, is evidence political movements and ideologies need a specific ‘thing’ to rally behind (such as a person or specific tasks assigned to members), for cohesion to be possible. Just rallying ‘against liberalism’ or ‘for conservatism’ is not specific enough, because, as shown above, these terms are so broad and hard to define that cohesion is impossible for ‘smart’ ideologies like the alt-right (although it works for mainstream political parties, that have mostly average-IQ voters and supporters).

NRx Concepts: A Review

Here is an summary of NRx, from the comments of arnoldkling.com:

neo-reaction is in opposition to the Cathedral.

possibly it is against the decay of what Walter Russell Mead calls “The Blue Model.”

One workable stab at defining the commonalities of neo-reaction is that it is opposed to “The Cathedral,” whatever that is.

I think the Cathedral is generally understood as a progressive, idealistic, blank-slatist view of the world that shifts the “Overton Window” always further to the Left. The Cathedral is maintained by left leaning, well-meaning, virtue signaling intellectuals who say things that may not hold up to careful inspection. But think twice about saying “That’s not true!” if the Cathedral priests assert something.

The Cathedral has a certain outlook.

1. It is Blank Slatist (what Steven Pinker called SSM, if I recall correctly). It believes human nature is mostly fluid and can be changed for the better. It lacks what Thomas Sowell called the “Tragic Vision.”

2. The Cathedral is leveling–it dislikes hierarchies of merit (for some reason, pop stars and athletes are allowed to be rich, as Thilo Sarrazin noted).

3. An annoying aspect of the Cathedral is that It is sanctimonious, always seeking enemies on the Right and bad-thinkers within the left–people who don’t think right and who need to be isolated or re-educated. This is a niche for the so-called Social Justice Warriors. As Steven Pinker said, “Man is a sanctimonious animal.”

(Members of designated victim groups are, as a tendency, allowed to be more outspoken when voicing correctly incorrect thoughts.)

4. The Cathedral (or the community of its adherents) is cosmopolitan in the way that suburban liberals and childless urbanites are cosmopolitan–it likes the Other, it gets a frisson of delight from proximity with a wide variety of people–but only if it doesn’t have to send its kids to failing urban public schools.

As an expansion of 4, it thinks that ethnically heterogeneous societies work as well as more-or-less uniform nation states. It thinks that inside every Lebanon is a Switzerland waiting to get out. The Cathedral thinks that the Habsburg Monarchy would have been better off without the military, the Church, and the dynasty (the very things that probably held it together).

(as pointed out here: https://20committee.com/2012/12/18/why-the-european-union-is-not-the-habsburg-monarchy-2-0/ )

Those who worship at the Cathedral think that wars are mistakes, that democracy is the natural state of of any political community, and that we all have many rights but very few duties. Cathedral adherents promote the multiplication of “duty-less rights.”

Many social problems arise from people being denied their rights–such as the right to housing, health care, a free education.

The Cathedral believes in “radical egalitarianism,” defined here:

http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2015/08/radical_egalitarianism_is_the_real_threat_.html

The Cathedral dislikes Robert Conquest, Thomas Sowell, Edmund Burke, and Adam Smith. and Charles Murray. And Roger Scruton. And Aristotle. but not Rousseau.

neo-reaction is basically everyone who would listen politely to Thilo Sarrizin when he says this

http://www.unz.com/isteve/thilo-sarrazin-on-the-limits-of-free-speech-in-germany/?highlight=germany+does+away

further reading:

1. Pinker’s _The Blank Slate_

2. E. O. Wilson’s works, including both Consilience and On Human Nature

3. Peter Frost on the difference between guilt and shame based societies. at unz.com. A great challenge is preserving civilized order from barbarism. Neo-reaction thinks this is hard. The Cathedral thinks it happens easily, and all immigrants can be assimilated easily–it is a forgone conclusion.

4. Suicide of the West

5. blogs at West Hunter, Psychological Comments, and Bruce Charlton.

P.S.: neo-reaction knows that we are in what Bruce Charlton calls “Thought Prison.” And it’s trying to get out.

————-

Recommend NRx Compendium as starting point of basic NRx terminology and concepts.

Philosophy:

Idealism vs. Materialism (related: Understanding Marx

Postmodernism vs. Structuralism (The term ‘postmodernism’ is often confused and does not mean ‘modern’ as in new. Rather it means rejection of reductionist narratives as applies to social sciences. More detail: The Postmodern Condition. Pretty much, like the Frankfurt School, it rejects materialism. Also related to post-structuralism.)

Nihilism, Free Will, Fatalism, Determinism, and the ‘Black Pill’

Nihilism and the Black Pill
The Black Pill « Amerika

Neo Masculinity and Christianity, Darwinian Conservatism, Free Will, Biological Reality

Free Will – Welfare Liberals vs. Neo Liberals and HBD-Conservatives

NRx Concepts:

Order vs. Chaos…This has many interpretations…here is mine, from a Social Darwinistic standpoint. Economics, culture, and biology are ‘sorting mechanisms’ that the egalitarian left seeks to undo.

Pine tree analogy

NRx trichotomy (techno-commercialists tend to subscribe to a materialist view of the world; traditionalists and theonomists: idealists)

NRx ‘Map’

‘The Cathedral’ (see compendium)

Gnon, Moloch (see http://www.socialmatter.net/the-compendium/)

Pacifism vs. Activism (related: Alt Right & NRx: End Game and Action Plans

Some pertinent posts I have written:

The NRx ‘Trichotomy’ Becomes a Dichotomy
Social Hierarchies and Techno Libertarianism are Compatible
How NRx has Evolved
NRx vs. HRx
Against the Ubermensch

Political Science and Government:

Divine rights of kings vs. natural law (Locke vs. Hobbes)

Revolution vs. restoration (restoration of monarchy)

Why democracy does not work (anti-majoritarianism), and how democracy is the problem instead of the solution, and how voters are irrational and misinformed.

The Myth of the Rational Voter
Anti-democratic thought
Anti-Democracy Sentiment Going Mainstream

Equal outcomes vs. equal opportunity (welfare liberals vs. classical liberals)

Related: Minarchism, libertarianism and anarcho-capitalism, ‘algorithmic governments’, fusionism, reactionary modernism, and neocamerialism

Why I am not a libertarian
Moldbug on Libertarianism, Neocameralism

Social Theory:

India’s caste system (Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and Shudras) as analogous to the hierarchy of power and influence in contemporary American society

Poseidon Awoke: Is Neoreaction Right-Brahmin Signaling?

Noble Savage vs. Civilization (the far-left believes civilization corrupts man, or that white men are inherently evil and its the job of the ‘state’ to purify them or to create equal outcomes)

Signaling, status, ingroup vs. outgroup, meta narratives, observations about culture and society

Holiness spirals, virtue signaling, or how SJWs are modern equivalents of the Puritans (Puritan hypothesis)

History:

16-18th century European history (concepts include: Whigs, French Revolution, English Civil War, Cromwell, Royalists vs. Parliamentarians (Roundheads), Protestants Vs. Catholics, Reformation, Restoration, Glorious Revolution)

Tangentially related to NRx:

Economics concepts such as basic income, post-scarcity, post-capitalism, automation, and wealth inequity

Rationalism (rationalism emphasizes empiricism and a ‘realist’ view of the world and human nature, in agreement with with Pinker)

Transhumanism, singularity, AI

HBD:

IQ differences between groups, IQ and socioeconomic outcomes, persistence of achievement gaps (possibly the stuff that is most likely to ‘trigger’ people)

People:

Ayn Rand, Murray Rothbard, Hans Hermann Hoppe, Julius Evola, Friedrich Nietzsche, Oswald Spengler

For more information, check out The Best of Neo Reaction, a comprehensive list of important articles pertaining to NRx published between 2012-2015: an invaluable resource.

For example Democracy and the Intellectuals discusses the failings of ‘natural law’, ‘the blank slate’, the ‘noble savage’, and why the ‘state of nature’ is not ideal.

Alt-Right War of Words

Not two weeks after Trump’s historic victory, which should have emboldened the alt-right, does pettiness, virtue signaling, and ego threaten to tear it apart.

It all began with some Roman salutes at an NPI conference, which got picked up by major media outlets like Huffington Post and The Atlantic.

And then began the in-fighting. Info Wars’ Paul Joseph Watson put out a widely-watched video Is The Alt-Right Dead distancing himself and Info Wars from Spencer and the alt-right, and a few others followed suit.

So now the alt-right is divided between Spencer and the ‘moderates’. Judging by comments on PJW’s YouTube video, the majority (probably 70%) side with Spencer, seeing Info War’s about-face as a sign of perfidy, and rightfully so. It would seem Info Wars was only in it for the money, riding the alt-right momentum for as long as they could profit from it and then exiting after it became ‘too extreme’ as to render further support ‘bad for bushiness’. Despite supporting Spencer, the majority also agree Nazi-larping should be avoided. The alt-Right is not Neo-Nazism, never was, nor should aspire to be. The alt-right is more about promoting nationalism and white identity, as well as raising awareness about important issues (such as immigration), than white supremacy. Others define the alt-right as any version of ‘the right’ that isn’t mainstream.

But it really doesn’t matter anyway…all of this will blow over in a few weeks. All of these sites cater to different niches, with different audiences and ideologies. Alex Jones and Info Wars will never be like Raddix, which will never be like Vox Day or Danger and Play, and so on. It’s unrealistic to expect such a diverse collection of people to agree on everything.

And however you define it, the alt-right is here to stay.

Another problem may be the tendency to ‘nitpick’ and ‘concern’ among the ‘right’, whereas on the ‘left’ there is more group-think. This is probably symptomatic of the greater intelligence, independent-mindedness, and critical thinking ability of the right compared to the conformist, low-information left. If you read comments on alt-right blogs, they are imbued with history and philosophy, as well as criticism and dissent, but left-wing comments tend to not be arguments but rather are incantations or affirmative chants such as ‘spread the wealth’, and so on [1]. Your typical berntard is way more conformist than the average alt-righter. But sometimes it can get out of hand, as I poke fun at in the post I can tolerate anything except factual inaccuracies.

Although this may be changing, slightly, as I explain in The rise of ‘concern liberalism’ and the decline of ‘identity liberalism, although thoughtful liberals on Reddit are NOT indicative of all liberals, who tend to be low-information.

Hail to the easily offended

There is concern by Vox and Mike about Richard Spencer being ‘controlled opposition’:

Controlled opposition or media indiscipline?

But I have to admit, it was somewhat fortuitous that I didn’t go given the manufactured media coverage of a minor incident towards the end, when apparently some idiots in the crowd began throwing Roman salutes on camera, and Richard decided it would be a great idea to throw the media some red meat by shouting “Hail Victory and Hail Trump.” Mike Cernovich put out a widely watched Periscope calling this “utter stupidity” and “controlled opposition”, and thereby sparked a bit of outrage among Richard’s fans.

Related: Is Richard Spencer controlled opposition?

A Note On Spencer + Hysterics

Richard Spencer and the alt-right shouldn’t worry too much about ‘looking bad’ in front of the media. The media and their multi-billion dollar budgets tried to besmirch Trump and failed. Ideas and messages are what matter more: If the alt-right can continue to win the hearts and minds of Americans, as they have done successfully in 2015 and 2016, the media will be powerless to stop it. If the alt-right fails, it won’t be because of the media.

Here is the video in question:

And Mike’s response

Out of the large audience, only maybe four attendees made the salute, which is a Roman salute, and any connection with Nazism is coincidental. The word ‘hail’ means to cheer, salute, greet, or approve enthusiastically. For example, ‘hail to the king’ or ‘hail to the chief’. Spencer didn’t say ‘sieg heil’, which has a totally different pronunciation.

Are we going to start banning words now, because people get easily offended or don’t know the difference between ‘hail’ and ‘heil’. Maybe it was a joke to trigger the liberal media, in which he succeeded. Also, Mr. Spencer has little control over what everyone in his audience does. I can understand lefties being easily offended but not Mike and Vox.

An NPI gathering is more civil and less racialist than a typical BLM or anti-Trump protest, that’s for sure. If other races and ethnic groups can have pride, why can’t whites, too. Politicians talk constantly about the importance of strong African, Asian, and Hispanic communities, but the concept and discussion of strong White/European communities is somehow forbidden in public discourse.

Also, there seems to be some terminology confusion over controlled opposition, vs. an undercover informant. Controlled opposition are shills that infiltrate or create opposition movements, and then steer them in counter-productive directions.

Informants are more stealthy, and try to extract incriminatory evidence to be passed on to law enforcement. An informant, upon gaining trust, may converse one-on-one to extract this information, or will log visitor information from a website. Mike is correct about being careful when posting online, but there is no need to drag Richard Spencer in the mud on this issue given there is no definitive evidence he is an informant, as anyone can be technically be an informant. We’re all adults here and are aware, and take responsibility, of the consequences of our actions…we don’t need your concern over looking bad in the eyes of the media or getting arrested.

Additionally, the alt-right is bigger than Spencer, although perhaps he is the most prominent spokesperson, along with Milo (who recently rejected being identified as alt-right). If others don’t like Spencer’s approach, they can (and already have) create their own sub-divisions and variants of the alt-right (it doesn’t even have to be called ‘alt-right’), which through the ‘marketplace of ideas’ may eventually rise to greater prominence and supplant Spencer. Even if these variants differ on aesthetic and motif, their similarities outweigh their differences. Regardless of what you call it or who the ‘leader’ is, the power of the alt-right lies in its ability to change the course of national politics (as well as public discourse), which the election of Trump is evidence it already has, and that’s really what matters.

SJW Narrative Collapse, Part Infinity

This is pretty funny… going on Reddit (I recommend logging out to see which default threads are on the front page, not subscribed ones), and it looks like the left, to quote the title of a Charles Murray book, is losing ground. A story on /r/news about “Leaflets calling for death of those who insult Islam ‘handed out at London mosque’”, was up-voted to the front page, much to the anger of the left, that wishes that this story would disappear and not be promoted to the ‘front page of the internet’ for the world to see the truth about the ‘religion of peace’:

Pretty much everything I write on this blog is true or will eventually be true, whether it’s about economics, the stock market, the media, Bay Area real estate, internet journalism, intellectualism, web 2.0 valuations, or the post-2013 demise of the SJW narrative.

The truth always prevails, but sometimes it takes a little while to break free from the web of misinformation and false narratives that are so appealing but also wrong. We’re seeing this with the post-2013 SJW backlash, in addition to the ‘alt right’, Red Pill, MGTOW, NRx and the ‘Dark Enlightenment’, Gamergate HBD, ‘frog Twitter’, and the election of Trump. And through this blog – which began in 2014 as these politically incorrect ideologies and movements were beginning to burst through like a battering ram against the fortress of leftism – I am proud to be a part of it, too.

By unleashing the frog that lies within us all, we can make America great again.

Who else is feeling deplorable today?

Leftist assumptions about economics and finance are being repudiated by the internet’s army of fact checkers.

For example, through the writings of Robert Shiller (a Noble Prize economist who shills for the left) and Michael Lewis (another liberal, who wrote The Big Short and Flash Boys), the left conveyed a narrative that high frequency trading was an unalloyed evil – an assumption that for many years went unchallenged by the ‘general public’ until only recently, as millennials on Reddit (as part off the post-2013 SJW backlash) eventually learned that high frequency trading actually helps traders by lowering transaction costs and speeding order executions.

A New York Times column If War Can Have Ethics, Wall Street Can, Too made it to the top of Reddit a couple days ago, but commenters attacked the leftist premise of the article, particularity as it pertains to high frequency trading:

Working at an investment bank conveys authenticity and authority in the eyes of other ‘redditors’, who up-voted the post in agreement. In many ways, finance and economics could be considered ‘STEM’, as it’s considered intellectually rigorous and involves empirical evidence, math, and number-crunching, and that’s why it ranks high in the hierarchy of degrees in terms of respect, along with philosophy, physics, and mathematics.

This was from /r/philosophy, not a ‘right wing’ sub, so it’s not like I cherry picked a sub that agrees with my view, and I could easily find more examples beyond the ones in the screenshot. But the reality is, there are a lot of misconceptions promoted by the left about algorithmic trading that are are easy to refute, and I have done so here. It’s nice to see so many people coming around to reality, rejecting the ‘blame the rich/banks’ mentality that was so pervasive in 2008-2012.

The same goes for the much maligned 2008 bank bailouts, which many people, in agreement with posts I wrote in 2011-2015, realize were necessary from a utilitarian standpoint, and helped the economy by stemming the bleeding from the ailing banking housing sectors so that the healthier sectors such as web 2.0, payment processing, information technology, and retail could thrive. The bailouts may have created moral hazard but indirectly created trillions of dollars of wealth in the form of rising asset prices, economic growth, and improved confidence – all at nearly no cost (as the bailout was funded with near-zero yielding debt).

The fact that the story went so viral, making it to the front page of Reddit, but also the intense, impassioned discussion in the comments, is further evidence of how finance is so important to millennials, who would rather debate regulation and high frequency trading than waste time on mind-numbing, disposable pop culture entertainment. This is more evidence of how intellectualism has become so important, contrary to pronouncements of how America is ‘dumbing down’. There is a huge demand for intellectualism that the internet and communities like Reddit, Hacker News and 4Chan are satisfying.

This is just one of many examples of how the truth always prevails. A reality-based worldview based on rationalism and logic always prevails. Leftists, who have to use misinformation and emotion to convert the uninformed to their causes, are losing.

Intellectualism as a ‘Passport’

In 2015, almost daily, I would check Scott’s blog to see what weird, new social ‘theory’ he had devised but right now, as 2016 winds to a close, it seems things have stagnated to some extent. It’s no one’s fault, really, but even the smartest people will eventually run out of things to say, as there are no more stones to be overturned, and everything there is to say will have been said. Either you come up with new material, change course, stop, or just go in circles.

Pertaining to ‘social theory’, right now ‘intellectualism culture’ and how it ties in with millennials, economics, metanarratives, and NRx, is one of the most interesting things going on right now, and is such a small niche that no one else is writing about it, so that’s what I’m going to focus on.

For awhile it was a mystery why NRx and ‘alt right’ bloggers on Twitter and elsewhere frequently linked and cited the writings of Tyler Cowen and Bryan Caplan, two economists with left-libertarian leanings, as well as the writings of Scott Alexander, but never cite the likes of Sean Hannity, Mark Levin, Rush Limbaugh, or Bill O’Reilly. But NRx is ostensibly a ‘right-wing’ ideology/movement, as is the alt-right, and the aforementioned political commentators are further to the ‘right’ than Cowen or Caplan, yet they are ignored, which initially didn’t sake sense to me. After some brainstorming, I realized why, and this lead to a series of posts about ‘intellectual solvents’ and ‘shared narratives’, that argue that, for smart people, intellectual bonds may stronger than ideological ones. Intellectuals, first and foremost, are repulsed by ‘intellectual laziness’, not ideological differences. Examples of intellectual laziness, or as some call ‘low information’, include: factual inaccuracies, reductionist thinking, preaching to the choir, ‘tribal loyalty’, intuition over empirical data and analysis, and so on. Furthermore, both rationalists on the ‘left’ and reactionaries (the ‘right’) converge in rejection of ‘low information’. Hannity, Limbaugh, et al., despite being on the ‘right’, are perceived as being too ‘low information’, which is why they are excluded from the debate, whether it’s about immigration, economics, politics, or finance.

Socialists and rationalists, who are on the ‘left’, and reactionaries and the alt-right, on the ‘right’, also converge in ‘shared narratives’, with mutual agreement, despite being diametrically opposed ideologically, of how mainstream discourse and society is ‘dumbed-down’, be it the public schools, the news media, or entertainment. Both agree that they have been failed by majoritarianism, which emphasis conspicuous consumption, token acts of democracy (voting), and a ‘one size fills all’ mentality that neglects those who are talented and or don’t fit the mold. Reactionaries and rationalists both oppose democracy, as they see it as inefficient and insufficient (some in NRx call it an ‘IQ shredder’), but to achieve different ends: for the ‘right’, to promote right-wing causes; for the ‘left’, to promote left-wing ones. Tyler Cowen, like NRX, is skeptical of democracy, and Bryan Caplan even wrote an entire book denouncing democracy, The Myth of the Rational Voter, whereas many ‘mainstream conservatives’ still hold dear democracy (and the democratic process) as a way of affecting change.

Intellectualism is a universal solvent because, as we see with Cowen and Caplan, it allows entry (like a passport) into differing ideologies and groups that also value intellectualism but otherwise are ideologically opposed. Consider nydwracu, the pseudonym of an influential blogger who is at least tangentially affiliated with NRx and the ‘alt right’, who is also formidably intelligent. Not much is known about him, but I think he studied computer science in college, which in addition to his smart, circuitous style of writing, is proof of superior intellect. Let’s just assume he majored in computer science (because I don’t really know for sure)…he could tell a story of how society doesn’t appreciate intellect and computer science, about how computer scientists (and STEM people in general) are seduced and exploited by less intelligent women for their money (hypergamy), and about how democracy, the public school system, and universities neglect the best and the brightest, on any community that values intellect (be it liberal or conservative) and be welcomed with open arms…as everyone else can relate (a ‘shared narrative’). I’m not being facetious here…these are valid concerns, as there is evidence men are failing at society or being failed by society, and is why MRA and Red Pill (or more broadly, ‘the manosphere’) are such rapidly growing, important movements, by, online, bringing light to these issues that the mainstream media (that only focuses on women’s issues) is ignoring.

Related to entry, when an intellectual encounters another intellectual who may have wandered down the wrong path (a leftist intellectual who supports open borders), the tendency is to patiently and kindly try to correct him, but stonewalling is reserved for the intellectually lazy, regardless of politics, who don’t even deserve a response as it would be a waste of time for the intellectual.

Other examples include Scott Aaronson and Scott Alexander, both of whom are very smart and despite being on the ‘left’ were ingratiated by the intellectual-right. Alexander is most famous for his groundbreaking post on ingroups/outgroups, that was heavily cited by reactionaries, rationalists, as well as going viral on sites as varied as as Reddit and Hacker News, but also the articles ‘Meditations on Moloch’ and ‘Toxoplasma of Rage’, both of which explore concepts within the burgeoning online field of ‘social theory’. Aaronson is most famous not for a post but for a single comment he made in 2015 on his blog, in which he wrote about his inner-war with feminism, how men are possibly unfairly excluded from gender issues, about how men are implicitly treated as ‘predators’, and that for ‘gender equality’ to be achieved men must be included in the conversation, again relating to ‘men’s rights’, and in the aftermath received significant media coverage from major publications such as The Atlantic, which published excerpts of the comment:

“The whole time I was struggling, I was also fighting a second battle: to maintain the liberal, enlightened, feminist ideals that I had held since childhood, against a powerful current pulling me away,” he wrote.

“that one of my female classmates would somehow find out that I sexually desired her, and that the instant she did, I would be scorned, laughed at, called a creep and a weirdo, maybe even expelled from school or sent to prison,” he wrote. “And furthermore, that the people who did these things to me would somehow be morally right to do them—even if I couldn’t understand how.”

This also ties in with ‘shared narratives’, again, as these are problems and questions that are generally unique to smart people and that anyone who is smart can relate to Aaronson’s post, and is why it went so viral and generated important discussion that encompassed the entire political spectrum.

A third example is a post on siderea.livejournal.com about class vs. economics, which, related to post-2008 ‘great online economics debate’, also went hugely viral, and was debated heavily on both left-wing and right-wing communities, as class and economics are issues that transcend political barriers and are issues that smart people care about.

But it’s not just about STEM, gender, and the dumbing-down of society – there’s a whole list of ‘shared narratives‘ and important questions that mainstream pundits ignore or only gloss over, and this ties into how internet journalism has evolved, to a pre-2013 era dominated by chest-thumping pundits, ‘listicals’, and ‘culture war‘ issues to one now that favors shared narratives, long-form content, data visualizations, nuance, and more esoteric matters (topics such as the Fermi Paradox and Hanson’s Great Filter). Consider the issue of unemployment due to automation, which is an angle to the unemployment problem that mainstream pundits seldom discuss. Most mainstream pundits only look economics superficially, with trite, banal generalizations such as ‘we need more jobs, but greedy companies refuse to create them’ (for the ‘left’) or ‘people need to stop being lazy look harder for work’ (for the ‘right’) or ‘millennials are lazy and entitled’ (both) and refuse to consider alternative theories and ideas (such as post-scarcity, economic class v. social class, post-labor societies, social Darwinism, automation, etc.) that deviate from their narrow, pre-established, unmovable political views and biases.