“No enemas to the right” disemboweled

November 24, 2016 § 167 Comments

Apparently Richard Spencer and his merry band of tens of followers managed to single handedly destroyno enemies to the right“.

You just never know what you are going to step in when you wander around outside the padded walls, and sometimes you are better off not trying to take responsibility for cleaning up the excretions of fellow sociopaths.

Now that the magical phrase ‘alt right’ has been tainted by Literally Hitler, the new conservative synthesis has to change its name, while singing the Words of the Prophet Sting.

UPDATE: 

Spencer tells his side of the story.

UPDATE 2: 

Spencer’s original post apparently disappeared, so I updated the link to a current post that gives his (current) side of the story.

§ 167 Responses to “No enemas to the right” disemboweled

  • TomD says:

    There is a “no enemies to the left” position because anyone who feels there are enemies to the left becomes a right-liberal very shortly thereafter (or anyone who has enemies to the left is defined as being a right-liberal).

    And so the battle of unprincipled exceptions continues.

  • Aethelfrith says:

    The motte-and-bailey rhetoric has been strong in Alt-Right spheres since yesterday.

  • Todor says:

    So it’s still too early to be openly pro-nazi?

  • No enemies to the right means they can attack us, but if we attack back they can scream about it.

  • Kurt says:

    In many cases, no enemies to the right is a vacuous truth.

  • CJ says:

    Spencer’s side of the story is an overlong whiny exercise in deflection. Whatever the specifics of the Nazi salute or Hail Trump chant, he’s an unabashed white nationalist. He and Black Lives Matter can all die in the same fire. In death we won’t have to worry about their skin color grievance mongering.

  • Zippy says:

    CJ:
    That is about my read too.

    Meanwhile, the ‘alternative alt right’ coalescing around Vox Day and the like is starting to resemble Men’s Rights Advocates. The latter didn’t reject feminism it just insisted that the officially hated group should have a seat at the table too, alongside all the other feminists. The former embraces leftist identity politics but insists that it is for whites too.

    What is fascinating from an observe-the-petri-dish perspective is that with the Trumpening we are seeing the ‘synthesize’ step of the Hegelian Mambo in real time.

  • Trump got about 5% more white votes than did Mittens, right?

    Was Mittens a crypto-Nazi?

  • Mike T says:

    He and Black Lives Matter can all die in the same fire.

    Spencer may get a lot of things wrong, but I find the incessant need of mainstream conservatives and tradcons to act as though minority racism and grievance mongering and white nationalism are fungible to be nothing but an exercise in sloppy thinking and punting the real questions about identity politics. There is also the fact that we consistently find ourselves worrying more about what white people think than what non-whites actually end up doing. Notice that Richard Spencer’s salute is being treated to nearly the same mount of press coverage as black men assassinating police at random.

    One reason I say we’re all still liberals is that even tradcons avoid offending certain liberal pieties like asking how a multiethnic nation is even possible. A nation, not a country, is a people united in common heritage of ancestry, language and culture. A country can be composed of many nations. It should be obvious that to the extent that white Americans generally follow a culture rooted in Anglo-Saxon heritage with flavor from the various immigrant groups, that the basic definition of a “white nation” exists. As many non-whites do not fit that pattern, but hew more toward their ancestors one cannot possibly claim that a second generation Indian who eats Indian food, likes Bollywood as much as Hollywood, practices Hinduism and speaks a passable version of their parents’ language is a member of the same nation within the United States as we are.

    If the United States were at least like the UK where it is understood that the English, Scottish, Welsh and Irish are four nations subject to the same king we’d probably not be badly off. However, we operate in a muddled environment wherein nation and country are used fungibly even to the point where people who are clearly quite different ethnically are supposed to be treated as though that ethnic difference doesn’t exist. Except when diversity demands it.

    The fact is that white nationalism is more historically accurate, like it or not, than the modern post-racial, post-ethnic “nation” conservatives defend today. When America was founded, there were as many Mestizos, Asians, Arabs, Indians and other non-white, non-black and non-Amerindian residents as there are Zoroastrians today per capita. The overwhelming majority of blacks at the time of the founding were slaves; the Amerindians were citizens of sovereign nations like the Cherokee. The founding fathers even restricted naturalization to free whites of good character. Speak of unprincipled exceptions all you want, and you will be right, but unprincipled exceptions don’t delete historic facts. Spencer may be totally wrong on many things, but white nationalism is far more historically accurate than the views of most of its opponents.

  • Zippy says:

    Mike T:

    The fact is that white nationalism is more historically accurate, like it or not, than the modern post-racial, post-ethnic “nation” conservatives defend today.

    Why should anyone care which of two reductive fantasies you rather preciously label “historically accurate”? And what on earth does it even mean to claim that “white nationalism” is “historically accurate?” The closest thing to a white nationalist state that has ever actually existed historically was in fact Nazi Germany, which ended rather quickly and violently because its aryan nationalist ideology, spun off from liberalism, was so wildly out of touch with reality.

  • A white racial identity movement is nothing new in these United States

    Gen. Washington himself endured greater physical hardships than if he had remained a British subject. Yet he was a happy man, because he was engaged in benefiting his race—something for the children of his neighbors, having none of his own.

    http://quod.lib.umich.edu/l/lincoln/lincoln5/1:812?rgn=div1;view=fulltext

  • Zippy says:

    Some snowflake bloggers have rushed to proclaim that even though their democratically elected God Emperor has disavowed, they do not disavow, or they kinda disagree substantively but aren’t going to formally condemn, etc.

    I wonder how connected the self importance of these affirmations by the existentially irrelevant is to participation in the great public liturgy of liberalism.

    Why, in other words, do so many small and politically irrelevant people believe that their personal endorsements / disavowals are important enough to write about? Why do most modern people feel a faux personal power to confer knighthood / knavehood?

  • GJ says:

    Hmm. Seems like it’s a consequence of Fraternity that many regularly make declarations about its boundaries, ranging from denunciations during Communist show-trials to disavowing Duke/Spencer/otherwise obscure figures.

  • Step2 says:

    Zippy,
    Why, in other words, do so many small and politically irrelevant people believe that their personal endorsements / disavowals are important enough to write about?

    I take it you aren’t a fan of team sports. How many fans endlessly debate sports trivia and invest countless hours of time and emotion into vocally supporting their own favorite players and stratagems?

  • Todor says:

    Because they want to win, they need to form alliances with people who don’t share all their views. We don’t have to do that, because we understand that the point is not to win, but to preserve what can be preserved, to paraphrase Gomez Davila.

  • Zippy says:

    Step2:

    I am indeed not particularly a fan of sportsball, but I apparently also did not make the question clear.

    Suppose the NFL suspends a player. Sure, various parties may express opinions on the merits and detriments of the player and the case. But this is more like the NFL fining or suspending a player and then fans jumping in and saying “well, I’m not suspending him!”

    Not a perfect analogy, but maybe that clarifies the point for at least some folks. There is something self-aggrandizing (and therefore self-infantilizing) about the whole “I don’t disavow” business coming from bloggers. Saying “I agree/disagree with Spencer” or whatever is different from this weird presumption of authority to excommunicate or not excommunicate. Or at least, that is my own impression.

  • Zippy says:

    Todor:

    Because they want to win, they need to form alliances with people who don’t share all their views.

    Yes, and they are assuming that they are even relevant to who wins or loses — which is only the case to the extent they embrace liberalism.

    In other words, they fail to perceive the Iron Law.

    I noticed that Vox Day describes himself as a fan of direct democracy. I expect to see him water skiing with Henry Winkler any time now, along the descent into the singularity.

  • Step2 says:

    Zippy,
    Not a perfect analogy, but maybe that clarifies the point for at least some folks.

    OK, let me try what I think is a better analogy. Instead of the NFL suspending the player it is the coach who sidelines the player but doesn’t impose any “official” penalty. Then the point of support or criticism from the fans is one of whether or not the player was believed to be hurting or helping the team, or if he would continue to be helpful for a new or modified team strategy.

  • TomD says:

    They’re trying to maintain the appearance that their form of right liberalism is winning, for which they need a liberal coalition.

    Much better to be Right and die for it, like Christ or Max Kolbe, than to be right and “win” where winning is defined as losing.

  • Vox Day seems to be of the opinion that his personal ideas represent the vanguard of a west-wide political/cultural movement but at least he and Cernovich are interesting reads.

    It is sort of funny too watch them retroactively denounce Buckley for casting the John Birch Society into the outer darkness even while they are embracing Milo and the sodomites (Good name for a punk rock band) and all the while their God-Emperor of the Cherry Blossom Throne lets men and women (real and fake) use any and all the restrooms in his Trump buildings.

  • TomD says:

    Liberalism – so incoherent that even liberalism can successfully argue against it.

  • Zippy says:

    Step2:

    They aren’t criticizing Coach’s decision though nor are they generically supporting the player – in fact the latter is often explicitly disclaimed. One of the cuter rationalizations is that ‘we’ have to keep Spencer and even actual Nazis in the ‘movement’ because compared to them ‘I’ (the writer) am less extreme (see blog.jim.com). Keeping Nazis in the (what kind is it again, exactly?) movement keeps the Ovaltine window wide open for these space cadets.

    In effect “Coach may have sidelined the player; I understand why and support Coach; but I’m not sidelining the player.”

  • I think a better analogy would be:

    NFL suspends a team because of the actions of a player. Coach says he’s not going to sideline said player, though he doesn’t agree with what he did, but also doesn’t disagree with the NFL’s decision to suspend the team.

    It’s minimally coherent if the person speaking is themselves a leader in the Alt Right. Otherwise it’s only coherent if the person is simply expressing their opinion about what the Alt Right leadership should do.

  • Zippy says:

    ArkansasReactionary:

    To be clear, I wouldn’t go so far as to say that the “I don’t disavow” talk is incoherent[*]. Just incongruous: it makes those who say it look like they don’t have an even remotely adequate grasp of the objective situation.

    [*] It isn’t clear to me that its terms carry enough definite meaning to rise to the level of coherence / incoherence.

  • Step2 says:

    Zippy,
    In effect “Coach may have sidelined the player; I understand why and support Coach; but I’m not sidelining the player.”

    It is incongruous because you are looking at it from the standpoint of who has authority. From a fan standpoint that is not necessarily relevant to their own preferences which are deeply entwined with their devotion to an idealized concept of the team.

  • Zippy says:

    Step2:
    Not just authority, but whose opinions are influential at all in any substantive way. Which I suppose validates your comparison to fanboys.

  • Regardless of how marginalized the Alt Right is as a group, it does make sense for those who are leaders in it to speak like that. The problem is that while the Alt Right does have few definite leaders (such as Spencer himself), there are no definite boundaries to who is considered leadership. This makes it so that anyone with any influence is incentivized to act as if they were a major leader. This is good insofar as it encourages people to be mindful of their public comments, but bad insofar as it encourages people to develop an over-inflated sense of self-importance.

    One could also make a comparison to voting, people behave in a certain way as an expression of the idea that everyone should behave in the same way. Though of course it’s not as Kantian as that, since blogging can in fact affect the views of a nonzero number of other people.

  • Zippy says:

    It is a virtual certainty that Trump would (and actually will, if a journalist raises the question) disavow Vox Day also; not because of NYT dishonesty but without any need for NYT dishonesty, since Trump agrees with the NYT more than Vox Day on race. Of course this is unnecessary now that Trump is already on the record condemning the alt right by name.

    When Trump says “Make America Great Again” he means “Bring back the (Bill) Clinton years, except I’ll negotiate better trade deals.”

  • I think the we have no leaders ideology is a tactic so the enemy can not isolate it and attack it effectively (Saul Alinsky; Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.) and it does also seem to fit in with Vox Day’s appreciation of fourth generation war ideology

    http://www.au.af.mil/au/awc/awcgate/milreview/lind.pdf

  • My comments about the reasonableness of them discussing whether or not to disavow Spencer was only about the reasonableness of them addressing the question from a standpoint of their opinion actually mattering. Not about the reasonableness of their specific conclusions.

    As best I can tell, their tactic on Trump generally seems to be to try to indirectly latch on to him so as to move their views into the Overton Window somehow. Thus why they are concerned with trying to motte and bailey their image away from Spencer.

  • TomD says:

    Perhaps they feel that the Overton window doesn’t shift so much as get broken on a side, and after someone such as Trump shatters an edge there is a mad scramble to get it rebuilt as far away as possible.

    Few realize that Trump’s “shifting” is to stand still and bellow.

  • Mike T says:

    d what on earth does it even mean to claim that “white nationalism” is “historically accurate?” The closest thing to a white nationalist state that has ever actually existed historically was in fact Nazi Germany, which ended rather quickly and violently because its aryan nationalist ideology, spun off from liberalism, was so wildly out of touch with reality.

    Spoken like precisely how I would expect a liberal to react. Even down to the Nazi Germany example. Incredibly original. I’m surprised you didn’t throw in an accusation that we want to throw all of the minorities into death camps. Self-restraint or omission?

  • Mike T says:

    The condemnation was also rather mixed and not what the left wanted. Seems Trump disavowed the Alt-Right to the extent it means white nationalism or connection to Spencer, but left the door open for Alt-Light and Alt-West as he publicly defended Bannon even after Bannon explained what he thinks the Alt-Right means.

    Because at the end of the day, most of the Alt-Right agrees with Trump’s nationalism more than disagrees with it.

  • Zippy says:

    Mike T:
    Your faux outrage is precious. Provide another actual example of an actual historical white nationalist polity, by all means, to back up your historical claim.

  • TomD says:

    The response will be that all European nations were white nationalist nations.

    As if whites existed before liberalism.

  • Mike T says:

    TomD,

    No, my response would be that white America, even accounting for regional differences, has always constituted a nation in the European sense of nationality. The proposition nation idea is the epitome of liberalism because it is the belief that any person through the adoption of the “right beliefs” can alter the very nature of their person to be whatever they want to be. It is the idea that someone who is completely foreign to one nation can simply will himself to be a member of another totally unrelated nation. Or to butcher a Zippyism, it is the notion the Free and Equal Superman in the Making can will himself be sheer will to power to transcend all natural barriers and simply say “I am what I choose to be.” It is the distant ancestor of Otherkin.

  • Mike T says:

    Your faux outrage is precious.

    It sounded a lot more sarcastic in my head than it obviously came off.

  • Wood says:

    TomD,

    Whites certainly existed before liberalism. I suppose it’s interesting to wonder whether “whites” did though.

    Mike T,

    I’m not even convinced that Nazi Germany was white nationalist. It seems the taxonomy dove deeper than just “white” in that case. I don’t know. It *seems* to me that this white nationalist business is predicated upon the idea that a nation of (certain arbitrarily defined “Euro”) whites, by whites, for whites will lead to peace and prosperity in a manner that is impossible with a multi racial polity. Once that is achieved we can move on to the sub points in the outline. Like religion and Christ and stuff. I know that’s not how you feel, but it sure does seem the way this Alt Right business plays itself out. It views itself as the most successful way to ensure the really important things like religious pluralism and other liberalisms. The Alt Right as a via media in politics will be just as successful as that other via media in religion was.

  • Todor says:

    Maybe we should remember Carl Schmitt here: the enemy has chosen us, and for them we are “Whites”.

  • TomD says:

    I would say that before we embarked on the white breeding process we had Germans and Irish and Italians and other nationalities – but no “whites” as such.

  • Zippy says:

    “America has always been white nationalist” looks a more than a mite motteish, to me. Even if we stipulate it to be true, we know precisely where it leads: in the words of the Prophet Jesus Jones, “right here, right now.”

  • CJ says:

    Mike T – I wasn’t drawing an equivalence between Spencer’s words and BLM’s actions. The equivalence is that the logical consequence of their programs – whether intended or not – is increased racial polarization of the US. History shows us that multiracial polities generally don’t break into ethno states without lots of bloodshed. I am vehemently opposed to anyone who is trying to bring that to my home.

    The proposition nation idea is the epitome of liberalism because it is the belief that any person through the adoption of the “right beliefs” can alter the very nature of their person to be whatever they want to be.

    So it’s liberalism to think that changing one’s beliefs actually changes one’s beliefs?

    Running through this debate is the unquestioned assumption that only ethnic nations are “real” and that a “proposition nation” or a state that isn’t also a nation is somehow illegitimate.

  • Zippy says:

    Frankly, both the proposition nation and the idea of an imposed multiplicity of ethnostates are bunk in my view. The US is not now and never has been reducible to either of those. In fact, the very notion of planning and imposing where we go from here – from 2016 USA – like some sort of futurist civilization designers is modernist nonsense for Presidents, let alone for readers of my silly little blog. It is all in the hands of Providence, and I blame the failure to see this as hammer-to-the-face obvious on an indoctrination tool called Sim City.

    Communities form around religion and shared history – around basic beliefs about reality, our place in it, and our shared history as communities – always. They are not programmed or programmable or manipulable machines. Doing what is right and otherwise trusting in Providence is the only path which does not lead to dystopic violent Hell.

    Which kind of circles back to the risible hubris underlying much of this ‘disavow’ stuff.

  • TomD says:

    Hey! Disavowing can be good. I disavow Sim City and liberalism!

  • CJ says:

    Zippy – You’re right, of course. But it’s also true that actions and beliefs have consequences, and that powerful, arrogant, and foolish men do attempt to engineer communities for good or (more often) ill. Yugoslavia was in my geography textbook when I was 9 years old. It’s not in my 9 year old son’s books. So I don’t put it past the human powers that be to decide that the US needs the same treatment. And I want to make it clear for the record that I, an anonymous nobody on a silly little blog, disavow any such machinations.

  • GJ says:

    TomD:

    Few realize that Trump’s “shifting” is to stand still and bellow.

    Yes. That’s because he’s a right-liberal, and that’s what right-liberals do.

  • Mike T says:

    Running through this debate is the unquestioned assumption that only ethnic nations are “real” and that a “proposition nation” or a state that isn’t also a nation is somehow illegitimate.

    The “proposition nation” doesn’t even really get into anything more than a shared view of politics. That is why you see the advocates of the “proposition nation” explicitly rejecting even Zippy’s definition of a community in favor of embracing the notion that political ideals and faith in civic institutions derived from them is a sufficient basis for a nation.

    It obviously is not and that’s why I say it is nothing more than liberalism expressed another way. Historically, nations shared religion, heritage and even similar genetics through generations of intermarriage. That is why it is possible, for instance, to have a decent shot of telling if someone is Italian versus Swedish. Within a region it may be difficult, but no one is going to automatically look at a pale faced, freckled red head and say “obviously Greek!” rather than assume Irish.

    So it’s liberalism to think that changing one’s beliefs actually changes one’s beliefs?

    It is liberal to believe that in the matters of nationality, all that matters is one’s beliefs. In fact, that is precisely what the proposition nationalists argue. It is their belief that a ethnicity and race literally do not matter at all. Hell, Ben Shapiro, their most vociferous advocate lately has gone to two left-liberal publications to explicitly call it racist to say that Western European ethnicity and culture is the foundation for Western Civilization.

  • Zippy says:

    ‘Proposition nation’ attempts to reduce nationhood to adherence to some set of propositions. Technically this fallacy of reduction could be asserted with respect to some set of illiberal propositions; though in fact liberals have been the only ones to assert it.

    A lot of the ‘lets make a megayugoslavia out of the US’ types do suffer from a similar reductionism which is no better. It is true that the mostly unforced intermarriage among citizens of a polity tends to produce ethni of particular character; but this natural segregation is an output, a natural result of community, not a forcing function which can be applied by social engineers to construct a community.

    So things like ‘white nationalism’ are no less reductive and crazy than the ‘proposition nation’. Hell, Steve Bannon disclaims white nationalism for economic nationalism, which is also moronically reductive – turning Black Friday stampedes by Walmart Whales into a forced principle of community unity is not less stupid and reductive than PN or WN.

  • CJ says:

    Mike T – Let me be clear (we’re going to miss that one): The unquestioned assumption I refer to is that “nation” as you define it is the only legitimate basis for a “state.” With respect to the US, the only defenses I’ve seen of this belief are 1) the Naturalization Act; and 2) a particular definition of “posterity.” Neither of which are sufficient in my view.

    To put it succinctly, Thomas Sowells’ embrace of the Constitution doesn’t make him white, but it is part of what makes him an American.

  • King Cuck Glenn Beck has been barking mad about the US as a proposition nation resulting in the insane idea that a faithful Catholic born in County Cork, Ireland can aspire to be an American with the same facile facility as a goatherd from Afghanistan.

    The America described in Federalist 2 is one of common european origins, race, and language and the Preamble to the Constitution identifies a primary purpose of the founding of this country as securing the blessings of liberty and prosperity being passed on to their posterity and the first naturalisation act of America is what makes multiculturalists become apoplectic when then learn of its existence and meaning.

    But for the Alt-Right, white supremacy must be as blind as justice ought to be for all that Vox Day and Cernovich and Spencer rail against are laws created entirely by white men.

    Race is not the answer to any problem; far better for Vox, Cernovich, and Spencer to attempt to make of America a Catholic Confessional State in which all legislation must be in true accord with all the commands of Christ the King.

    There is an example of peace and comity amongst the races on this continent – Spanish Catholic Mexico back in the day

  • I think it is important to keep in mind what James Kalb wrote about culture and was posted at Auster’s VFR blog quite some time ago:

    A culture is a particular complex of habits, understandings and loyalties that are normative although mostly unstated among a particular group of people. As such, it requires boundaries. A culture can exist as a culture only among a group of people who have grown into it together and feel that among themselves they can take it for granted. Such conditions cannot exist in a group that feels obligated to be utterly and continuously open to numerous new arrivals, avoiding even latent discrimination, and called to honor them in all their otherness.

    And that is why a Catholic born in County Cork and a goatherd born in Afghanistan can not in any way represent anonymous intellectual citizens of a proposition nation.

  • Mike T says:

    Mike T – Let me be clear (we’re going to miss that one): The unquestioned assumption I refer to is that “nation” as you define it is the only legitimate basis for a “state.” With respect to the US, the only defenses I’ve seen of this belief are 1) the Naturalization Act; and 2) a particular definition of “posterity.” Neither of which are sufficient in my view.

    To put it succinctly, Thomas Sowells’ embrace of the Constitution doesn’t make him white, but it is part of what makes him an American.

    To be clear, I am not equivocating between nation and state in my arguments. In fact, that is one of the things that conservatives do that really muddles the issue.

  • CJ says:

    Mike, I’m not accusing you of equivocation. I’m saying that pointing out “it’s not a nation, just a state” says nothing about the legitimacy, viability, or stability of said state.

  • The problem with America is that in order to create an American nation with a uniquely American identity, it HAS to be liberal.

    This, of course, is another way of saying that America is intrinsically unstable and morally insane, and all we’re doing right now is punting the football a little further downfield every four to eight years or so.

  • To put it more succinctly: We’re pretty much boned.

    Which is why we should be focusing on repentance for ourselves and those we can reasonably influence.

  • Mike T says:

    Anything which dooms our people necessarily dooms us individually as well, including before God. If it is not possible to separate America from liberalism, then that necessarily means that no American can individually hope to be an exception with any degree of reason behind his hope.

    America has far more influence and heritage than just liberalism, but realizing that is harmful to the all powerful liberalism narrative. Liberalism is not all powerful. It is downright chickenshit compared to many of the other heresies and challenges that preceded it. The apostles would praise God to face SJWs instead of ruthless and violent pagans who wouldn’t hesitate to throw them into a torture chamber or up on a cross.

  • Mike T says:

    malcolm,

    Just rephrase it as a defeatist lecture on how Greece cannot be redeemed from paganism. Removing liberalism from America would be less radical than going from paganism to Eastern Orthodoxy.

  • Wood says:

    Mike T,

    We won’t stand before Christ at our judgments as Americans in the pertinent sense. Malcolm’s advice for us to focus a bit more on the things that will matter when we stand before the throne of Christ isn’t “defeatist.” Ironically it’s possibly the only way for us to save the America you and I both love so much – a way that is so utterly lacking in much of what passes for politics and philosophy on the Alt Right. Yet again, I see an inversion of principles as the fatal flaw in all the Alt Right business.

  • Just rephrase it as a defeatist lecture on how Greece cannot be redeemed from paganism.

    What? That would be making literally the opposite point that I made.

    There are obviously other facets to America, and in fact I am very thankful to be living here as opposed to other places, but we’re a country who EXPLICITLY based their creation and philosophy on liberal principles.

    You can’t save America. You can’t save Pagan Greece either.

    But, if everybody repents and comes to Christ, it can be transformed into something better.

  • It’s worth noting that for Christians “We’re probably screwed” is actually a fairly consistent predictor for the future. Christians are in for the long defeat.

    That doesn’t mean we should stop fighting. It means we should be picking the important battles.

  • Mike T says:

    There are obviously other facets to America, and in fact I am very thankful to be living here as opposed to other places, but we’re a country who EXPLICITLY based their creation and philosophy on liberal principles.

    Much of our freedoms are rooted in pre-liberal Anglo-Saxon tradition. What we codified were specifically liberal versions of them.

    You can’t save America. You can’t save Pagan Greece either.

    But the Greeks did not become non-Greek when they stopped being pagan. In fact, well over half of Greece’s recorded history is now in the Christian era of their culture.

    I am not talking about the United States of America. I am talking about the nation that founded it. The Byzantine Empire was “Greece” for much of Greek history. The Greek nation survived and moved on when it died.

    Our nation was not founded on liberal principles. You can’t really be the “founder of a nation” as opposed to the founder of a state.

  • Mike T says:

    Wood/malcolm,

    I am trying to draw a distinction between the nation and country/state. That is why I say that if the nation is condemned, then so is your hope in God as well because you are part of the nation no matter where you stand on the political system. Condemning a nation is not like condemning the Byzantine Empire, it’s like condemning the Greeks qua Greeks rather than their state.

  • Zippy says:

    Mike T:

    I think you are making a legitimate distinction: Germany is not the Third Reich. But I would call Greece a country, and it’s current political regime a (particular kind of) nation-state.

    America has always had a liberal political regime, but an illiberal America is not impossible in principle. Extraordinarily unlikely, especially in the short term of mere decades and centuries: but not impossible.

    The language I tend to use is ‘country’ and ‘polity’, where the latter emphasizes that the subject is the political aspect of a country or other community. All countries are polities, but a country’s politics can change quite radically without it ceasing to be that country.

    See my more recent post for part of my perspective on attempts to jigger American politics into a racially nationalist machine designed to create a safe, tame liberalism for white people.

  • Mike T says:

    FWIW, I consider white nationalism in some sense to be a way point on the way out of liberalism because it is the first step to delineating where America the nation and America the state begin and end.

    Germany is not the Third Reich. But I would call Greece a country, and it’s current political regime a (particular kind of) nation-state.

    Greece has historically meant the territory occupied by the Greeks. So in the same sense “America” is the land occupied by the Americans. However, there is a people who would still be Greek or American if you rounded them up and sent them to an Earth-like planet.

    America has always had a liberal political regime, but an illiberal America is not impossible in principle. Extraordinarily unlikely, especially in the short term of mere decades and centuries: but not impossible.

    That last statement is true for most societies because liberalism is uniquely suited to tickle the ears and appeal to the middle and upper classes in advanced societies. One of those is that historically, illiberal societies have been run by elites that jealously guarded their prerogatives.

  • Zippy says:

    Mike T:

    FWIW, I consider white nationalism in some sense to be a way point on the way out of liberalism because …

    Yes, it is clear from your comments here that you think right liberalism – shuffling the basket of unprincipled exceptions without unequivocally rejecting liberalism – represents some sort of step away from liberal dysfunction rather than perpetuation and amplification of liberal dysfunction. That is the same trap into which the great majority of folks with a conservative disposition always fall, even if they ostensibly reject liberalism, which most do not.

    Meet the new cuck; same as the old cuck.

  • Zippy says:

    Oh and sure, of course Greeks are an ethnic group and Greece is a country, as a matter of semantics. ‘Greek citizen’ is a native of the country Greece as recognized by the current political regime in Greece; etc etc.

    The point about country versus nation was just semantic. You seem to be trying to wedge the word ‘nation’ into the discussion as a way of legitimizing ‘ethnic nationalism’ — and again this appears to me to represent the cart-before-the-horse daycare-is-family mistake I discuss in my more recent post.

  • Zippy says:

    An obvious concomitant: black folks have been here as long as white folks, and are as much a part of the soul of the country as white folks. America without Chuck Berry is just a different place entirely, a place that exists only in Richard Spencer’s fantasies.

    Race isn’t nothing, but it isn’t everything either. And the soul of America just isn’t all from one continent or skin color, no matter what fantasies some LARPers may entertain. Other countries may be different, are different, but America has always been a mixed race family in fact.

    In fact one (though just one) of the pillars of my own rejection of mass immigration is – as I wrote quite a while back at W4 – the harm it does to American black communities.

  • TomD says:

    Moderns seem especially attached to the idea that we can’t discuss the ideal without showing step by step how we get there from here; which is why (for example) many dismiss Distributism out of hand.

    The important thing is to keep an eye on the True, Good, and Beautiful and then not do evil, even if we can’t see how Providence will lead us.

  • TomD says:

    Saruman was clearly a right liberal 😉:
    “As the Power grows, its proved friends will also grow, and the Wise, such as you and I, may with patience come at last to direct its courses, to control it. We can bide our time, we can keep our thoughts in our hearts, deploring maybe evils done by the way, but approving the high and ultimate purpose: Knowledge, Rule, Order; all the things that we have so far striven in vain to accomplish, hindered rather than helped by our weak or idle friends. There need not be, there would not be, any real change in our designs, only in our means.”

  • CJ says:

    Zippy’s comment @ 2:26 is pretty much everything that needs to be said about fantasies of white nationalism in America.

  • Mike T says:

    Oh and sure, of course Greeks are an ethnic group and Greece is a country, as a matter of semantics. ‘Greek citizen’ is a native of the country Greece as recognized by the current political regime in Greece; etc etc.

    It’s not semantic to point out that there is a real and substantial difference between a nation and a country. Both words mean different things, even if they are used interchangeably.

    An obvious concomitant: black folks have been here as long as white folks, and are as much a part of the soul of the country as white folks. America without Chuck Berry is just a different place entirely, a place that exists only in Richard Spencer’s fantasies.

    And that has precisely nothing to do with the question of whether or not white America is entitled to consider itself a nation or ethnic group. No one is debating whether or not black folks have made critical contributions to our society. Just like no one is debating that Scotland played an outsized role in key aspects of British history. That does not mean Scots and Englishmen are the same people with just different accents. Heck the behavior of whites and blacks often suggests that we really do regard each other as more than just a little different because of how much we tend to self-segregate just like other groups that are not related to each other tend to do in multi-ethnic/national states.

    Interestingly, if you look at the map of Switzerland’s ethnic distribution, it is even less diverse and mingled than our society. Despite being “equally Swiss,” the various ethnic groups that are part of historic Switzerland prefer homogeneous cantons to diversity.

  • Zippy says:

    Mike T:
    It isn’t clear to me whether you really believe that your semantic tapdancing actually helps other people understand you better, or if the point of it is just goodfeels that you get from the self induced illusion of winning an argument.

  • Zippy says:

    To the extent there actually is a substantive point it is :–

    Motte: American blacks and whites have a tendency – and it is just a tendency – to self segregate into fuzzily distinct local communities. This is obviously true.

    Bailey: Black America and White America actually are now or at some time in the past actually were literally different countries (or “nations”, if that word makes you tingly). This is obviously false.

  • TomD says:

    This has made it clear to me why a country must be confessionally Catholic – if it has any Catholics; because Catholicism will be the cultural aspect that can and does hold disparate nations together.

  • CJ says:

    I really appreciate this discussion because it’s helped to clarify exactly why I find ethno-nationalism so abhorrent when applied to the US.

    The US is and always has been composed of different nations that exist together in a community. And so you cannot have ethno-nationalism here without doing violence to the community. On the other hand, you can seek the good of the community without doing violence* to any of the constituent nations.

    *Where “violence” means actions that are inconsistent with the good, the true, and the beautiful.

  • Zippy says:

    CJ:

    …you cannot have ethno-nationalism here without doing violence to the community.

    Agreed (under whatever semantics).

    Liberalism gravitates toward majoritarianism, because mathematically speaking majoritarianism allocates equal proportional political power to everyone, formally treating everyone as equally free while still allowing the exercise of authority as an unprincipled exception. This inevitably produces anti-majoritarian counter-forces as the wolves de facto outvote the sheep over what is for dinner.

    Ethnic nationalism in the USA – which has for its entire history been multi-ethnic as a matter of fact, no matter what folks may project in their mind-holodecks – attacks the soul of the nation/country/union in its quest for a segregated ethnospace in which the superman can be free. White nationalism in the USA is just inbred liberalism. It seeks the unanimity (“consent of the governed”) that liberalism requires among the superman (because liberalism banishes authority). It attempts to define the superman in such a way that this unanimity is possible (a ‘free society’ of the ethnically uniform).

    This is, of course, a reductionist pish posh pipe dream based on an opposite day grasp of reality. There are no free societies. There are only societies which put the right sort of people in prison, and other societies which put the wrong sort of people in prison.

  • GJ says:

    I take it as granted that definitions of ‘nation’ by liberals are attempts to define the Ubermensch, or more precisely to enunciate some necessary qualities that Ubermensch must possess. The current division between ‘proposition nation’ and ‘born this way’ clearly corresponds to the classic mind/body and nature/nurture dualisms.

    Some (like Vox Day) aren’t gored singly by either horn, but that doesn’t mean they’re not pinned by both at the same time.

  • Mike T says:

    In the long run, multi-national states are ungovernable without a measure of tyranny unless one nation is demographically dominant and culturally assertive. Even in the case of Switzerland, you have a clear majority that speaks German, deep segregation and a level of subsidiarity from the federal government to the cantons that is shockingly radical to most of the human race.

    On the other hand, you can seek the good of the community without doing violence* to any of the constituent nations.

    Calling the United States as a whole a community borders on destroying any value in the term “community.” You might as well go full on globalist and just speak of the entire Earth as one community if that is the direction you are going.

  • Mike T says:

    Ethnic nationalism in the USA – which has for its entire history been multi-ethnic as a matter of fact, no matter what folks may project in their mind-holodecks – attacks the soul of the nation/country/union in its quest for a segregated ethnospace in which the superman can be free.

    The dominant ethnicity has always been one based around the combined heritage of Britain. That is the nation that every liberal, right and left, says doesn’t exist and if it did, would have no right to assert its right to any interests or position of leadership among the ethnic groups.

  • Zippy says:

    Mike T:
    Strange that you don’t see yourself conceding the point in your own word choice.

  • Zippy says:

    A nationalist who denies that the nation about which he expresses his feelings is a community, has pretty obviously descended into incoherence.

  • MMPeregrine says:

    TomD, you wrote “Moderns seem especially attached to the idea that we can’t discuss the ideal without showing step by step how we get there from here; which is why (for example) many dismiss Distributism out of hand.”

    Have you seen this website: http://practicaldistributism.blogspot.com/p/basics.html

    The link is setup for the site administrator’s series on the basics of Distributism. I read quite a bit on that site when researching usury, and eventually found Zippy’s FAQ

    This article was particularly helpful for me: http://practicaldistributism.blogspot.com/2009/06/distributism-and-home-mortgage.html
    Most readers here interested in how we move away from usury would probably enjoy that last article (5 minute read).

  • Wood says:

    I’m not sure the material in the second link is going to be 100% Zippy certified, but that was my impression on a quick glance.

  • Mike T says:

    A nationalist who denies that the nation about which he expresses his feelings is a community, has pretty obviously descended into incoherence.

    It is a community in a loose sense, but not in the ordinary sense that one considers a community.

    The fundamental problem liberalism is having white nationalism is that liberalism recognizes every group but white Americans as a separate racial-ethnic group. White Americans are the purest Free and Equal Supermen under liberalism as we allegedly have no nation, no identity by blood and soil or shared history, but merely by asserting our own identity in the context of ideas. Or so liberalism says. In reality, white America is culturally rooted in the nations of the British isles, with a political culture that is mostly English, but with a lot of (unfortunate) influence from continental Europe. By any real measure, white America may be a mutt culture, but most of white America has enough of the essential traits to call itself a nation in the same sense that the Han Chinese, Persians, Japanese, French, English and many other nations see themselves. The fact that our unique history has lead to some very sad and unfortunate identity problems for others in our country doesn’t take that away.

    As I said, we are the nation that liberalism says does not exist and if it did, we should destroy ourselves for the good of everyone else in the United States who isn’t like us. If you want to start righting our course, you could start by encouraging an exploration of our Anglo-Saxon and Scottish cultural heritage as an alternative to liberalism because it is a tradition that is rooted deeply in an ordered liberty based on subsidiarity and competing spheres of authority, not “freedom and equality” as the highest political goals.

  • TomD says:

    I think it’s simpler than that – liberalism is doomed to fail and so it must have a low man to blame the failure on.

    Today it is the “whites.” So far they’re just yelling at them, not gassing them. If all whites disappeared tomorrow (assuming any liberals were left) they’d be blaming something else.

  • Zippy says:

    Mike T:

    It is a community in a loose sense, but not in the ordinary sense that one considers a community.

    I am sure that in your mental holodeck a nationalism whose unified object nation is not really a community makes perfect sense. “All hail the Motherland, which isn’t even really much of a community!”

    As I said, [American white people] are the nation that liberalism says does not exist and if it did, we should destroy ourselves for the good of everyone else in the United States who isn’t like us.

    The United States of America is not now and never has been a unified nation of only white people, however you want to slice it: formal representation in government (e.g. 3/5 compromise), occupancy of territory, etc. You should at least admit that as a matter of historical fact this thing for which you are advocating has never actually existed.

    TomD:

    Yes, patriarchal white males are the mythical subhuman oppressor at the moment. But under liberalism there is always a mythical subhuman oppressor, and one will be found as long as liberalism persists even if a particular Final Solution actually succeeds.

  • TomD says:

    I wonder if there’s particular virtue in hoping that liberalism picks you as the subhuman oppressor.

    Or in other words, we should be working so that liberalism’s mythical subhuman oppressor is the Bride of Christ, the Catholic Church, explicitly. Which is what the result of repentance will be, I suspect.

  • Zippy says:

    TomD:

    Arguably the Catholic Church was the first subhuman oppressor against which enlightened liberalism carried out purges; possibly even before the nobility/aristocracy. Though there was certainly some overlap during pleasant interludes like the French Revolution.

  • Mike T says:

    Denying that the Anglo-Saxon/Scotch-Irish white majority culture is as much a separate ethnic group in the same sense as the French majority in the French Republic is just a facet of liberalism in practice. It is how they say “what is an American?” Like it is some unknowable thing with no essence to say “who can say what a Frenchman is?” Or “who would know a Chinaman if he encountered one?”

  • Zippy says:

    Mike T:

    Denying that the Anglo-Saxon/Scotch-Irish white majority culture is … a separate ethnic group …

    … is not something that anyone in this particular discussion has actually said or implied, as far as I can tell; so it makes a nice straw man.

    It is how they say “what is an American?” Like it is some unknowable thing with no essence …

    Quite the contrary. Rejecting your positive assertion of the essence of “American” as exclusively Anglo-Saxon Scotch-Irish European is not anti-essentialist. More generally, it isn’t intrinsically anti-essentialist to disagree with Mike T about the essence of some particular thing, including America. You are after all at least ostensibly attempting to characterize an actual thing in reality.

    Pointing out actual counterexamples to the race-positivist contention that the national essence of America is exclusively white European doesn’t deny that there is any such thing as America. It is just disagreement with your characterization.

    For that matter, France cannot be reduced to “white European” either. More generally speaking, the kind of reductionism represented by white nationalism as some sort of ideal for the USA is just another insane – and quite predictable – offshoot of modernity.

    Jazz and the Blues are as American as Apple Pie, whether you like it or not, despite the darker skin tone that white nationalism attempts to characterize as un-American.

    Now maybe you want to say that America as it actually is in reality and has been from its beginnings should be destroyed by civilizational engineers and replaced by some racially purified white nationalist polity. Because it sure looks like that is what you are attempting to propose, just without actually owning what you are attempting to propose.

  • Mike T says:

    is not something that anyone in this particular discussion has actually said or implied, as far as I can tell; so it makes a nice straw man.

    I brought it up not because anyone said anything about it, but because it is a relevant issue to white nationalism. You want to discuss liberalism and white nationalism, that fact is the elephant in the room that liberalism dreads to acknowledge because acknowledging it would shatter the entire facade of left-liberalism in the United States. Quite literally the entire hardline left-liberal movement is now based on that principle “it doesn’t exist, and if it did, it would have to deny its rights and supplicate before every other group for mercy and table scraps.

    For that matter, France cannot be reduced to “white European” either.

    The identity of the French is a very old one and it is not an easy proposition to bring in a group of foreigners who don’t even share similar lineage and say “they’re French now.”

    Jazz and the Blues are as American as Apple Pie, whether you like it or not, despite the darker skin tone that white nationalism attempts to characterize as un-American.

    I don’t deny that they are indelibly part of our shared culture. However, I don’t see the issue as so cut and dry. As I have pointed out above, the United States was never racially or ethnically homogeneous. However, the same is true of all nation-states. There are ethnic/national minorities in them as well. That is why I used France as an example to show that the messiness we have of integrating an Anglo-Saxon/Scotch-Irish white majority with Amerinidians, the descendants of black slaves and other groups that we have gained by virtue of annexing territory or other means is not unique to us.

    The Corsicans are not French, they are citizens of the French Republic. They are distinctly not French; their very language is from the Italian branch of the Romance Languages and their culture has more in common with any regional group of Italy than mainland French society. Yet at the same time, one of them became one of the most famous leaders in French history with the support of the French. (All of this is even more true of the Basque in France; their language group is so different that it cannot even be categorized)

  • Mike T says:

    Now maybe you want to say that America as it actually is in reality and has been from its beginnings should be destroyed by civilizational engineers and replaced by some racially purified white nationalist polity. Because it sure looks like that is what you are attempting to propose, just without actually owning what you are attempting to propose.

    So let’s settle this. These are the high level things that I support and which seem to have a lot of support among the “Alt-West” flavor of nationalists:

    1. Recognition that (most of) “white America” is a nation derived from Anglo-Saxon/Scotch-Irish culture with influence and flavor from the rest of Europe.

    2. Recognition that this nation is the majority, is the body that founded the federal state and has a right to assert its influence like any other majority in a state throughout history or today (like the Han exerting their influence in China, the Slavic Russians in the Russian Federation, etc.)

    3. Recognition that the core national entities within the United States as defined by historic relationship to it have a right to preserve the demographics of the United States against newcomers’ desires to expand theirs. They also have a right to favor immigration based on who is more likely to be absorbed successfully into one of those groups over those that don’t.

    4. That racial purity is not possible and would result in injustice to the historic ethnic groups that formed the foundation of the United States demographically.

  • Zippy says:

    Mike T:

    You want to discuss liberalism and white nationalism, that fact [that American whites constitute an ethnic group of European descent?] is the elephant in the room that liberalism dreads to acknowledge because acknowledging it would shatter the entire facade of left-liberalism in the United States.

    I’m not sure what sense it makes for you to constantly battle with ghost leftists here, of all places. Who cares that left liberals think that right liberals are basically Nazis?

    (They kind of have a point: left liberals are to Stalinists as right liberals are to Nazis; gulags to the welfare state as auszchwitz to segregation; etc etc. It is all the same to me, one conception of liberalism raging about the tyranny of another).

    Who cares that left liberals are simultaneously freaked out by and driven by racial differences? Who in this discussion are you actually addressing?

    There are all sorts of places to go to engage in right-liberal mutual self congratulation about how stupid and crazy leftists are, and how brilliantly a white racially conscious right liberal nationalism is going turn out this time around.

    But why shadow box here?

  • TomD says:

    Because of the Iron Law – and it would seem much easier to convince Zippy Catholic to be a right liberal than to convince a left liberal to be a right liberal (which is patently false as the Orange God just finished proving).

  • TomD says:

    An amusing side-note – it appears said Clown Frog Prince was able to be turned off torture faster than many “Catholics” have – via a consequentialist argument: it don’t work.

  • Zippy says:

    Mike T:

    Recognition that (most of) “white America” is a nation …

    You keep using that word ‘nation’. But I don’t think it means what you think it means. There is not now and has never been a nation that we might call the United White Peoples Of America which includes only white people and excludes everyone else. That is just a fantasy of the Science Fiction Book of the Month Club and other intellectually and morally shallow right liberals.

  • TomD says:

    Mike T – your arguments end in “immigration bad, racial mixing/purity bad” – a simpler and much more amusing argument you can use for left liberals is that immigration raises carbon output and climate change: as people move from Mexico to the USA, say, their carbon footprint increases tremendously.

    Zippy agrees with you that mass immigration is bad, and that enforced racial equality is unworkable, but he refuses to use those conclusions to concede that liberalism is good (because it is evil).

    We have become a nation of “nationalist” vs “globalist” liberals almost before you could blink.

  • Zippy says:

    TomD:

    Plus, staying away from America prevents sexually transmitted diseases.

  • Mike T says:

    You keep using that word ‘nation’. But I don’t think it means what you think it means. There is not now and has never been a nation that we might call the United White Peoples Of America which includes only white people and excludes everyone else.

    You can object to my definition of nation, which is similar to ethnicity, but there is historic precedence for it because nations have always transcended state boundaries. For example, today there are French and Germans in Switzerland who are totally French or German but also part of a country called Switzerland and not part of the nation-states we call the French Republic or the Federal Republic of Germany.

    But why shadow box here?

    I’m not trying to shadow box, but *gag* raise awareness of certain issues that I think are related to the main issue and particularly how it intersects with liberalism generally. For example, I think you cannot escape the liberal mind trap on ethnicity as it exists in the United States without acknowledging that the white Anglo-Saxon/Scotch-Irish nation is real, a majority of citizens and that liberals of both stripes desperately want it to not exist.

    Whether you call it a nation or an ethnos, the point stands. There is a majority group that, like the French in the French Republic is not the total population but the majority and core identity of the society and state.

  • Mike T says:

    he refuses to use those conclusions to concede that liberalism is good (because it is evil).

    And this is where I think we are talking at cross purposes. I deny that liberalism is absolutely essential to the identity of the white Anglo-Saxon/Scotch-Irish majority. I am in fact saying that if tradcons want to start steering en mass away from liberalism one of the first steps is to convince this people that they do in fact:

    1. Have a real and fairly cohesive identity.
    2. That that identity is no more intrinsically tied to liberalism than Greeks were to paganism or a gay man is to his sexuality.
    3. That there is far more interesting about its culture, past and future than liberalism can offer.

    But what I see is a lot of defeatism, which is ironic since y’all are Catholics and the Catholic Church face infinitely worse opposition from ancient pagans than modern liberals. The ancients would have rejoiced to face such ridiculous enemies in their efforts to evangelize.

  • TomD says:

    The majority group, that liberalism of both flavors wants to deny exists, is the liberals themselves. The white supremacist nation is nothing more or less than the liberal nation.

  • TomD says:

    It may be true that people will come to realize the evil of liberalism because of the attacks by liberals on them, but they must be helped to see that a retreat to right-liberalism is not the answer.

    Catholics are the group that doesn’t cooperate with the evils of the time – we are to proclaim the Truth, even when we’re bad at following it ourselves, and pray for God to handle the rest.

    Or in other words, the “real and fairly cohesive identity” that the “white majority” has, is liberalism. Trying to remove liberalism from that group is possible but not as simple as you seem to think it is – certainly going back to the “principles” of America won’t do it.

    I suggest you have to all the way back before the Reformation.

  • Zippy says:

    We’ll work hard to be sensitive enough to establish safe spaces for ex racialist right liberals once we return to the Holy Roman Empire.

  • Patrick says:

    Jazz is played on white instruments, with white musical notation, sung in a white language, recorded on white technologies. Everything about it is white except for the colored people who performed it. I’ve seen a lot of people saying that “white” is just a construct people invented to keep themselves in power. It seems more like the opposite is true, that “black” doesn’t exist and is just a construct, since everything they have is white.

  • Wood says:

    Patrick,

    You would make a strong White Studies professor. Because really music is nothing but the race of people who invented the instruments and what not.

    Geez, apart from the high sounding language is it so hard to see how dreary a world y’all are advocating? Is it so hard to see that modern depraved black and brown culture is essentially no different from modern depraved white culture? And that they are all united by a ferocious commitment to liberalism and immorality? Unequivocally reject liberalism and enter the Catholic Church – fairly simple – and I can GUARANTEE you this race business will fall into its properly prioritized category without your being forced to check your common sense at the door.

  • Patrick says:

    Wood, I can’t tell if you agree with me or not. But I’m already a Catholic

  • donnie says:

    I’m no historian, but my understanding is that the rise of this concept of “the nation” or “the nation state” was the beginning of the end of Christendom, and laid the groundwork for post-1789 liberalism.

    As I understand it, up until roughly the 13th century, if you asked a man living in modern-day France, “Who are you?” he might respond something to the effect of, “I am Piers, subject of the Duke of Anjou.” Common people understood themselves in relation to the authority figures they were subject to. Everyone is a subject to their own local authority (a Count, a Duke, a King, etc.) and everyone, every single baptized person, is also subject to the Pope, the Vicar of Christ.

    This widespread acknowledgement and respect for authority was essential for Christendom. Without it, we would have never had the great Popes of the Middle Ages, such as Pope St. Gregory VII and Pope Innocent III, that brought rebellious princes and even emperors to heel.

    But around the turn of the 14th century, during the Pontificate of Boniface VIII, a notable change had occurred. Supposedly, if you asked a man living in modern-day France the same question as before, “Who are you?” it would be very odd for him to respond in the same manner as a man would have less than a century ago. More likely he would say, “I am Piers, I am a Frenchman.” The idea that a man was defined by his membership in a sovereign state whose subjects are relatively homogeneous began to catch on and become widespread. Thus, when Boniface VIII tried to exercise his authority against King Philip the Fair in a similar manner to how his predecessors had dealt with rebellious rulers, he was not successful. It was no longer seen as legitimate for an Italian to interfere with the affairs of Frenchmen.

    Again, I’m no historian, but my understanding is that this concept of “the nation” and “the nation state” spread like wildfire. Over time, it directly contributed to such hellish catastrophes as the English Reformation. And though it was originally embraced by rulers in order to foster national camaraderie, patriotism, and the belief that the King was subject to no other earthly authority, not even the Pope, it ultimately laid the groundwork for the populist nationalism that sparked the French Revolution, and the end of Christian monarchies everywhere.

    So, Mike T, perhaps this might help you understand why we are so adverse to your concept of nationalism. It seems to us like all you are doing is rolling back liberalism to an earlier iteration, one that contributed to the murder of everything that our fore-fathers once loved.

  • Todor says:

    A real White Studies professor would have said that jazz is a degenerated artform, created by the Jews, to destroy the folk music of White people. A mass produced musical sirup, “composed” by an army of jewish “songwriters”, who used their monopoly to undermine the Christian values of the West. Now, can I have the job? (I’m half-kidding.)

  • Brien says:

    Donnie,
    Well said, sir!

  • Zippy says:

    I’m not too fond of jazz myself, but the blues are in my blood. My first cousin once removed was a pretty famous bluesman: one of those white guys who was quite comfortable around (and not intimidated by) black folks.

    Which calls for some Warren Haynes. (No relation).

  • TomD says:

    No wonder you’re all for aristocracies- you’re a blue-blood!

  • Wood says:

    Zippy,

    I’ve been critical of jazz myself in the past – although Ed Feser’s enthusiasm for it has encouraged me to try some Thelonius Monk. But I grew up in the so called birthplace of the blues – so I’m with you on that one. Thanks for the video!

  • TomD says:

    A new sublime answer to the problem of Evil – God allowed liberalism to occur because He loves the blues!

  • […] První z nedávných pokusů definovat hlavní principy alt-right se objevil na Jimově blogu. Shodou okolností výše uvedené Trumpovo prohlášení popřelo hned první z jeho 17 bodů, který říká „žádní nepřátelé napravo“. Jak pošetilý je to princip, ukazuje neocenitelný Zippy tady a tady. […]

  • CJ says:

    Love jazz. Not really into the blues, but this one is a Christmas staple, much to my wife’s chagrin.

  • Tom Simon’s Screwtape-style essay “Death by Bebop” is a must read. A brilliant work. https://bondwine.com/2014/07/05/death-by-bebop/

  • CJ says:

    Malcolm – I figured Ornette Coleman would get a mention in that article. I thought my dad had taken to drinking again when he tried to get me to listen to that plastic saxophone playing nut.

  • Mike T says:

    If it weren’t for blues, we wouldn’t have metal which is reason enough to thank black America for their contributions.

    Or if you want to trigger a SJW, just tell that slavery was justified because it gave us blues, R&B, rock and metal.

  • Zippy says:

    Mike T:
    Yes, because the smugness of imbeciles is a virtue.

    Speaking of making light of moral atrocity, as a Southern man I’m sure you appreciate that without Sherman’s march we would never have gotten the Dukes of Hazzard. Heck, if there had been no Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings we might have missed out on anime.

  • TomD says:

    And why not say (as some people slander us by saying that we say), “Let us do evil so that good may come”? Their condemnation is deserved!

    Romans 3:8

    Poor St Paul, not up to date on Game and postmodern consequentialism, such a backwater dude. I’m sure he’s as sad as someone can be, contemplating the beatific vision.

  • Mike T says:

    TomD,

    I was not even close to serious…

  • TomD says:

    Mike T: – wasn’t aimed at you; just at people who both freak out about consequentialist arguments, but use them, too (see arguments for/against liberalism: you can’t say it’s bad because of obvious consequences, but you must say it’s good because of unobvious consequences).

  • Alex says:

    Heck, if there had been no Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings we might have missed out on anime.

    Wow, and I thought the radiation was a bad enough side effect…

  • Alex,

    I would have agreed until I decided to check out Miyazaki.

    Watch “Spirited Away” and “Castle in the Sky”, then get back to me.

  • Mike T says:

    TomD,

    FWIW, I would rather consequentialist reasons to not torture than no opposition to torture-as-policy.

  • donnie says:

    The Catholic Church faced infinitely worse opposition from ancient pagans than modern liberals. The ancients would have rejoiced to face such ridiculous enemies in their efforts to evangelize.

    I don’t want to hijack this thread, however, Mike’s quote here has been bothering me since I read it since I think it’s ultimately correct. We modern Christians have very little excuse for being unable to defeat enemies as laughable as modern liberals. It’s all well and good to say to oneself, “Do the right thing, trust in Divine Providence,” but at the same time I do expect that the Just Judge will hold us accountable for failing to act when we could have done some good.

    I get the sense that Catholics today are very soft, and I don’t just mean the everyday Catholics sitting in the pews, going through the motions. I mean everyone. Even our modern Saints are soft! I hear St. John Paul II called “the Great”, but does he even come close to comparing to St. Leo the Great, who successfully dissuaded Attila the Hun from sacking Rome? And while I have heard so many stories of St. Mother Teresa’s acts of compassion and love and how people of all backgrounds were changed by her, how many conversions was she responsible for? Does it compare to St. Vincent Ferrer, who was not only devoted to helping the poor and distributing alms to them, but is also said to have converted over 50,000 Muslims?

    Maybe some of you are aware of groups that are particularly good at winning souls for Christ. If so, let me know. Because right now I don’t understand why in this world where winning sales for one’s business could not be easier, winning converts appears to be harder than ever.

  • And while I have heard so many stories of St. Mother Teresa’s acts of compassion and love and how people of all backgrounds were changed by her, how many conversions was she responsible for?

    I find it highly plausible that Mother Teresa was both directly and indirectly responsible for converting tens of thousands of people.

    St. John Paul II maybe didn’t convince Attila to keep away from Rome, but he was one of the key figures in ending communism in Europe.

  • Hrodgar says:

    Perhaps part of it is because even our saints are liberals these days? St. Leo wouldn’t have kissed or Koran, and St. Vincent Ferrer would never have said something like “We never try to convert those who receive [our aid] to Christianity but in our work we bear witness to the love of God’s presence and if Catholics, Protestants, Buddhists, or agnostics become for this better men — simply better — we will be satisfied,” or “Of course I convert. I convert you to be a better Hindu or a better Muslim or a better Protestant. Once you’ve found God, it’s up to you to decide how to worship him.”

    Is it any wonder that those who are see nothing wrong with doing or saying things like that, even if they be saints, have some difficulty winning converts?

  • Todor says:

    Donnie,

    We are all liberals now. Even the Catholic Church is liberal. It’s easy to play reactionaries online, but how many around here would be willing to impose the will of a minority on the majority? And to use violence if necessary? Oh, if we were the majority, sure… But a tiny minority? Who would have the guts to tell a dying atheist that he should suffer until the end because we are Catholics and we are in charge now? Nah, we are democrats through and through.

  • donnie says:

    Zippy,

    Thanks for the link. I think you are fundamentally correct, however, I still think Mike has a point and I do personally feel culpable for not having been responsible for a single conversion in my entire life. I agree that modern marketing gimmicks are not the answer, but I do think there is no excuse for abject failure in sharing the Good News.

    Malcolm,

    Perhaps it is impious to compare saints against one another, but when it comes to comparing our most celebrated Saints of today (JPII and Mother Theresa being the most celebrated modern Saints by far) to the Saints of yesterday, I don’t think there is a competition at all. The Saints of yesterday were far more impressive.

    Yes, JPII’s role in the fall of communism is admirable, as is the fact that many of the best men in the Church today were inspired by him to join the priesthood. But that doesn’t make up for the fact that he organized the horrifically scandalous World Day of Prayer for Peace in Assisi, that his governance of the Church was negligently lax, and his record on sexual abuse was abysmal, period, even if there may be room to doubt his personal culpability. I think it is fair to say that if he hadn’t imprudently abolished the position of The Advocatus Diaboli, there is no way that he would be canonized today.

    As for Mother Theresa, maybe my assessment of her is uncharitable. Honestly, I never once doubted that she would one day be in heaven, not like I did with John Paul II. Mother Teresa is a wonderful role model for serving the poorest of the poor. But by her own admission she never attempted to convert those she ministered to. As she said herself on several occasions, “It is important that everyone is seen as equal before God. I’ve always said we should help a Hindu become a better Hindu, a Muslim become a better Muslim.” This is why I suspect she was not responsible for many conversions.

    Again, I am left wondering how a Saint like St. Vincent Ferrer was successful in converting tens of thousands of Jews and Muslims while I sit here with vastly more resources at my disposal, unable to convert even my best of friends.

  • Wood says:

    I think the Catholic Church may have faced worse *material* opposition in the days of pagan Rome compared to today (for the time being), but I’m not sure the same can be said about spiritual opposition. I tend to think we are in an infinitely worse position today. In former days I think there was a clearer delineation between the spiritual good guys and bad guys than today, wheat and tares notwithstanding. I’m not even sure it’s possible at present – I personally didn’t even know what usury was or how immoral it is until months ago, and its rampant today. It’s imperative to evangelize, but we can’t even agree on whom to evangelize. Try evangelizing “traditional Christians” to the Roman Catholic Church in the more ecumenically minded sites. Our victories will likely be smaller in number for the time being, but maybe that means the particular victories are even more meaningful.

  • donnie says:

    Who would have the guts to tell a dying atheist that he should suffer until the end because we are Catholics and we are in charge now?

    Call me a liberal but I’m pretty sure that is not how you are supposed to treat a dying man. He should be treated in Catholic hospital, ministered to by nuns, and with a priest on standby to accept his deathbed conversion.

  • TomD says:

    donnie – do not be sure how many conversions you are or are not responsible for. We won’t know until the final judgement.

    I think that things like Zippy is doing, helping to convert Catholics to be Catholics, is great good work, and may be even more influential than people realize.

    And I’ll help enforce the minority on the majority, if it is a rightful authority.

    I think it is actually quite hopeful, our new saints, as it shows that we can be saved even if we are not perfect. And the hoary saints of old, even though they fought very well against modernism, have obviously failed in some way, so we can’t say their life was absolutely perfect. I think there’s something we have to learn, and I think it’s something that traditional people specifically have to learn. Part of it is being an authority. Part of it is being submissive to bad authority. I suspect the Apostles understood (part) of why Peter was picked, and not anyone else.

  • Wood says:

    TomD,

    I second the importance of “helping to convert Catholics to be Catholics.”

  • TomD says:

    I think he was referring to (for example) denying euthanasia to a dying atheist. Which we find very hard to argue against, because liberalism leads us to not understand how suffering can be good. Even most Catholics have a vague understanding of “suffering bad but Christ” which doesn’t cover it adequately (e.g. some of the absolute vile rage spewed against Mother Teresa by some atheists).

    I’m reminded of this – and anyone who hasn’t read Fr Gordon’s story is in for a bit of an eye-opener.

  • Yes, JPII’s role in the fall of communism is admirable, as is the fact that many of the best men in the Church today were inspired by him to join the priesthood. But that doesn’t make up for the fact that he organized the horrifically scandalous World Day of Prayer for Peace in Assisi, that his governance of the Church was negligently lax, and his record on sexual abuse was abysmal, period, even if there may be room to doubt his personal culpability.

    How much do we REALLY know about the Saints of the past? Their great deeds lived on, true, but just given how the world worked back then they had less opportunities to handle things like sex scandals and world days of peace.

    JPII’s role in the fall of communism might not be quite as big as convincing Attila to leave Rome alone, but it’s pretty damn big.

    As for Mother Teresa, yeah, she said something like that once – but the big criticism of the Hitchens’s of the world was that her charities were more concerned with conversion than care. I find it very possible she converted numbers comparable to the Saints of the past.

  • TomD says:

    And, frankly, can you think of anyone who is more incentivized to fix the failings of JPII now than St JPII?

    Let us continue to work on the beams in our eyes, the specks in our brothers’ eyes can come later.

    (There seems to be a definite group in the “traditionalist” camp that howls about how “evil” JPII and Mother Teresa were, but seems absolutely unwilling to admit how evil America was, and how bad liberalism is. I’m hesitant to take their conclusions as correct, as I know the foundational issues are much more important.)

    Maybe we should complain that Pius VI didn’t put the American colonies under the interdict. Maybe we should be incredibly grateful that Paul VI didn’t. (American revolution / Roe V Wade)

  • I tend to be very sympathetic to Pope Paul VI. He had his flaws – *major* flaws – but I think he genuinely tried, and Humanae Vitae was a brave document.

    Whatever other failings his papacy was responsible for, I’ll always appreciate him for that.

  • TomD says:

    I think we’ve been incredibly blessed to have a long series of popes who have genuinely tried – including our current one. No explanation of Francis can be complete without describing his absolute dedication to confession, which doesn’t quite fit the “he’s the antipope of Revelations” theory.

    We all have our flaws, in fact, we probably all have major flaws. But we work on living our lives as Christ calls us to, day by day. (Frankly, I think the biggest flaw that permeates the Catholic world is the fear of being too bold. I am reminded of Chesterton’s words, which many today, even who would agree with them, are afraid to have it publicly known: That little urchin with the gold-red hair, whom I have just watched toddling past my house, she shall not be lopped and lamed and altered; her hair shall not be cut short like a convict’s; no, all the kingdoms of the earth shall be hacked about and mutilated to suit her. She is the human and sacred image; all around her the social fabric shall sway and split and fall; the pillars of society shall be shaken, and the roofs of ages come rushing down, and not one hair of her head shall be harmed.)

    So, for example, because usury is a grave moral evil, and the modern financial system is based on usury, it must come down. But few dare to say that, instead trying to be Saurman and negotiating with the world to “gradually” and “seamlessly” turn it around.

    I pray that I may be moved to be more like the martyrs of the faith each day.

  • Todor says:

    So we went from “Why can’t we defeat Liberals” to “The most liberal popes in the history of the Church were really good popes now that I think of it”.

  • TomD says:

    No, at least not me. I’ve gone farther, which is to go all the way to “I will be obedient to rightful authority, even if it is liberal, and not use my own judgement to decide when to obey (which makes me the authority).”

    God knows what He’s doing.

  • Todor says:

    Tom,
    According to Aquinas, we must always follow our own conscience. It’s a sin not to. So are you sure that your own interpretation is really in line with the teachings of the Church?

  • According to Aquinas, we must always follow our own conscience. It’s a sin not to. So are you sure that your own interpretation is really in line with the teachings of the Church?

    We also must rightly form our conscience. Clearly Tom thinks – and I agree – that in good conscience we still must be obedient to the rightful authorities in the Church.

  • Zippy says:

    The end of liberalism is to delegitimize all authority: a new man subject to no authority but his own reason and will. Ultimately it attempts to put us all in a position in which it is impossible not to reject authority. Thus all of the authoritative commands to reject authority coming from liberal authorities.

  • Todor says:

    Are we playing motte and bailey? We must always obey, but not if it is sinful to do so and not if our conscience is telling us it’s wrong. So always, really?

  • Considering we’ve had over 200 popes it’s quite the bold claim to say these were the most liberal popes in church history. I really haven’t researched enough of the popes to say for sure.

  • TomD says:

    My conscience tells me to obey authority as I would obey God. 🤔😋

    Checkmate, subjective liberal consequentialists.

  • Todor,

    I think you’re smarter than this. Yes, unless asked to do something grossly immoral we must always obey.

    Err on the side of obedience.

  • TomD says:

    The very concept of authority these days is highly polluted by Protestant (and liberal) ideas. Authority is like a father not like a programatic dictating machine. The Pope and President and both not directly ordered me to do much of anything, but they’re still real authorities, and should be obeyed.

    (Amusingly enough, Thomas’s defense of conscience stems from conscience being an authority that must be obeyed.)

  • Todor says:

    Let’s not confuse a practical problem and a metaphysical one.

  • TomD says:

    For practical suggestions, I recommend spoons.

    Mainly spoons.

  • donnie says:

    Considering we’ve had over 200 popes it’s quite the bold claim to say these were the most liberal popes in church history. I really haven’t researched enough of the popes to say for sure.

    Fun-fact: I once listened to a talk given by a secular Vatican historian who said that the only pope before John XXIII that was considered to be a liberal by his contemporaries was Pope Benedict XIV, who happens to be the same pope that penned Vix Pervenit.

  • As Zippy once put it, we all really want to be Horatius at the bridge. We can’t just be dealing with spiritual issues in the Church, they need to be the *worst* spiritual issues, and this needs to be the *worst* crisis in Church history. Being a crisis is not enough.

    I think people forget sometimes that the Church is literally 2000 years old. That’s a lot of time for crises.

  • donnie says:

    Malcolm,

    Sure, but I don’t think anyone here is trying to paint our Modernist crisis as somehow worse than the Roman persecution of early Christians, or the Arian crisis, or the Protestant Revolt (though I certainly am aware some people say that).

    Actually I think your comment provides strength to Mike T’s earlier point. The early Church Fathers who were up against the might and fury of pagan Rome were living through a much, much harder crisis and were up against much, much tougher enemies. Yet the spread of Christianity exploded during this time period.

    Meanwhile we are living through a much softer crisis, against much softer enemies (perhaps the softest of enemies) and yet we suck at evangelizing. Even our saints suck at evangelizing. We don’t even know where to start.

  • Todor says:

    “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”

  • Cane Caldo says:

    @Donnie

    Sure, but I don’t think anyone here is trying to paint our Modernist crisis as somehow worse […]

    Above, Wood painted it this way:

    I think the Catholic Church may have faced worse *material* opposition in the days of pagan Rome compared to today (for the time being), but I’m not sure the same can be said about spiritual opposition. I tend to think we are in an infinitely worse position today.

    Such pleasant lies are common in Protestant circles, too. I’m sure I’ve uttered the same lie. The lie is in the implication that where there is material opposition there is a dearth of spiritual opposition; which is to believe that meat moves itself. Sorcery, divination, superstition, demon worship, and all the other evils that littered the ancient world in their own names–but which we disbelieve today–really were tempting to ancient Christians, and they really were spiritual.

  • TomD says:

    Everyone wants the current crisis to be the worst ever because that makes it easier – you don’t have to sit around being holy and obeying bad authorities, you can declare grave fear, necessity or serious inconvenience, and then establish yourself as the One True Authority, and get to press all the cool red buttons you’ve been waiting to.

  • Wood says:

    For the record I said I wasnt sure. At any rate, my point was fairly specific: that we moderns have lost our moral barometers to an extent unheard in the early Church. It’s hard to say I particularly was being tempted to, say, usury when I had absolutely no idea what usury was. The temptation comes into play now that I do. There’s no need to make the current situation the worst ever, or to couch it in terms of pretty little lies, in order to take an assessment of our current particular weaknesses – weaknesses that have been remarked upon by nearly every “modern” Pope.

  • donnie,

    We’re talking the days of heresy after heresy being solved by contentious Church council after contentious Church council, eventually leading to mutual schism and a slicing of the Church in half due to petty political concerns masked as pettier theological hair-splitting.

    My point – The Church has been around for 2,000 years. Even as far as spiritual opposition goes, I find it very hard to say we’re in the worst position ever. Christianity – I’m not looking this up right now, but going off memory, so I may be wrong – I believe is growing worldwide. Europe is not the whole world.

  • Wood,

    I have no argument that we are dealing with many and particularly modern evils.

  • TomD says:

    Hmmm – we need a name – a name for the fear that our modern times and troubles will end up just being a footnote on the great reign of Leo XII or maybe even Leo XIV.

  • Svar says:

    Thomas Fleming was completely right about Spencer from the very beginning. He warned Buchanan and Taki. Brimelow definitely should have known better.

    Thpencer is an obvious queer and I’m sick of the people who defend him, mostly the TRS guys. The media parades him around because he’s a “Safe Nazi”. I don’t care if someone makes us Trump supporters look like racists but making us look like queers is a completely different matter all together.

    Night of the Long Knives for Richard Sphincter

  • Aethelfrith says:

    Relevant: It looks like (some) Alt-Righters are chastising (some) edgy Spencer-wannabes for LARPing as Nazis.

    https://archive.is/lPAen

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