Monday, July 12, 2010 133 Comments

Actual letter to a liberal friend

I apologize for lack of content. The technical miracle is almost complete - already, my senses are enormously expanded, and I can feel the Old Ones beginning to stir. More work remains necessary, however, to confirm the results.

So I thought I would fill the gap by posting a letter I wrote recently to a respected liberal friend. My friend wrote:
I would rarely send a NYT link, let alone a New School Prof diatribe, to you (though for full disclosure, I almost went there). But I have long been fascinated by the vein of rage tapped into by rage-radio/TV, and mined accordingly by demagoguery of all assortments. This is an interesting attempt at getting at the core... (thoughts appreciated - perhaps grist for UR)

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/06/13/the-very-angry-tea-party/
I responded:

If I had to describe it in a sentence, I would say that the rage is easily explained, but not easily explained in the terms of those who feel it. They are clearly angry about something, but the actual words that come out of their mouths are often nonsensical and contradictory. This is why it is so hard for so many to get a handle on. It is simply inarticulate demotic discontent.

Basically, you will see this in any hieratic system of government which the peasants do not really understand. They feel, somehow, that they are getting jobbed. They are (in my opinion) getting jobbed. But how they are getting jobbed is infinitely more complicated than their simple peasant mind can understand. (Also, the idea that they are in some way jobbing the peasants is the farthest possible concept from the collective mind of the gentlemen.)

Therefore, the peasants open their mouths and out comes rage and nonsense. As a gentleman, you are fascinated and repelled by this extraordinary wave of rage and nonsense. Do I have this reaction right? You may of course feel free to disregard the crude metaphor of medieval class conflict, which is no more than a metaphor. Still, I feel it is a good way to ground the conversation in history.

One easy reaction is to blame Fox News. It is true: for the first time in a long time, the peasants have an exclusively peasant-themed mass propaganda channel. However, the objective observer notes quickly that Fox News is not so much telling its audience what to think, as telling them they are allowed to think what they already think. Since they are peasants, lacking any semblance of an aristocratic culture that can accumulate and transmit collective wisdom across generations, what they think is generally nonsense.

Fox News aggregates and retransmits this nonsense, but does not really direct it much in Goebbels style. In some ways it even moderates it - for instance, Fox, and neocons in general, are not much less aggressive in purging racism than establishment journalists. (It is certainly interesting to imagine an alternate 21st-century America that was as aggressive in purging communism as it is in purging racism. I have seen people get quite hot under the collar at the mere mention of this horrible gedankenexperiment, but it fills a need.)

Have you read the Center for American Progress's history of progressivism in America?

http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/2010/04/pdf/progressive_traditions.pdf

This is approved by all manner of official historians and is as authorized as it gets. From my perspective, it seems quite euphemistic to say the least. It would be an interesting exercise to reconstruct this same story without any sugary self-laudations. Nonetheless, many truths can be discerned in it - including some it might not have chosen to convey.

For intelligent but mainstream neocon/libertarian criticism of this document you may see David Bernstein at Volokh:

http://volokh.com/2010/04/16/whitewashing-progressivism/

I feel that Bernstein completely misses the point, however, hence burying the lede even deeper. Where is the real lede?

Look at the document's discussion of one of the main groups whose votes brought FDR to power in the '30s - lower-class, urban, generally Catholic white non-old-stock Americans. These are the people TR called "hyphenated Americans" - and he didn't mean it in a nice way.

The CAP historians mention these people a couple of times. Most notably, they mention the fact that this group, historically Democratic Party voters going back to the 19th century ("rum, Romanism and rebellion"), also historically urban, was living in the suburbs and voting for Reagan in 1980. They profess, however, to be entirely mystified by this transition. Surely, if we understand it, we can answer the question of what motivates the "tea partiers."

The post-Catholic hyphenated group is not all of red-state America, but when we add other post-Democratic groups (Southerners, farmers, etc, etc, etc) we see the basic historical origin of the modern American peasantry. My wife is from Ohio, and I went to high school in semi-rural Maryland. So I do know something of these people, and not just from books. Also, my father was in the State Department and I went to Brown, so I know the oligarchy.

So the question is: why, given what actually happened in the 20th century, would these peasants feel generally jobbed? Ie, betrayed? Do they have any legitimate reason to feel jobbed? Clearly, if they have a legitimate reason to feel betrayed, this must be the objective observer's interpretation of the ultimate cause of the rage they express - disregarding any number of spurious or illegitimate reasons, as entirely irrelevant. If there is no such legitimate reason, we must consider an entirely different set of explanations for the phenomenon.

What we can say quite clearly is that this tribal subpopulation has, in no temporary way, lost confidence in progressivism as a philosophy of government. Fortunately or unfortunately, they do not know how to unelect a philosophy. Believe me, as a student of history, it can be done! But the means are two or three orders of magnitude more dire than anything even Glenn Beck has imagined. Fortunately or unfortunately, blue-state America is safer than it thinks. Much safer. Also, the demographic balance is shifting in its favor - as is widely known.

But why? Perhaps one clue is this movie from 1965:

http://www.archive.org/details/DetroitC1965

50 years ago, Detroit was a thriving metropolis, the fourth largest city in America. It had no presentiments whatsoever of any imminent disaster. Today it is a burned-out ruin, more or less. This is the sort of objective phenomenon that, if you're a student of history, you can't help but try to explain.

Of course, the causes of urban decay in Detroit and other American cities are quite complex. One cannot help but observe, however, that the decayed areas are where the hyphenated Americans used to live. Not exactly - but generally, more or less. For instance, Detroit was a big hyphenated-American town.

This spring I had an interesting experience at a dinner party. The people at the party were actually my wife's friends, but both she and Sibyl were sick, so she sent me. Now, normally my wife will strain life and limb to keep me from getting into any but a superficial political discussion with her friends from the San Francisco theater scene. Frankly, her fears are exaggerated. I can pretend to be a progressive all day long without any discomfort whatsoever. I can also pretend to be a redneck - it is frightening to see me in this mode. But in any case, she wasn't there. So I got to use my Sith mind tricks in an uninhibited manner.

One of the other guests was a black playwright and director - very upper-crust black, no accent - and his pretty but somewhat dim Midwestern wife. I had met these people a few times but did not know them very well. The wife, in particular, revealed herself as a very orthodox Chomskyite progressive.

In any case, not really knowing these people, I wound up steering them around to the question asked above. The Detroit Question, one could call it. It was then that I learned that the director's wife was from such a traditional Polish Catholic community in, I think, Cleveland, that before she went to college she had assumed she would end up as a nun.

So toward the end of the conversation I took a conversational chance. I said: "why did your parents leave their homes in the city, and move to the suburbs? Was it by any chance because they were afraid for their physical safety?"

"Yes," she said. Rather quietly.

Now, this is not really news to anyone. But most people think of it as an effect without a cause. Well, as a student of history: when a country's fourth-largest city becomes a ruin, it is not an effect without a cause. People argue all the time about the fall of the Roman Empire. But nobody argues that it was an effect without a cause - a random event, a black swan, not correlated to any other event.

The fall of Detroit is an objective observation. Most people (even on Fox News) do not really connect it with the history of the 20th century, the FDR administration, the tradition of progressive government, the Great Society, John Lindsay, etc, etc. In fact, they try not think about it at all. Why would they? Their history is made of cardboard. Red, white and blue cardboard. So the American TV audience has the choice of (a) the CAP version, which (IMHO) is entirely opaque and meaningless, or (b) brightly colored cardboard. This by itself is more than enough reason for rage.

But, although they do not reason openly and explicitly in this existential manner, the tea partiers feel emotionally that their entire system of government has lost, over the course of decades, their confidence, and needs to be replaced by something entirely different. The basic problem with their rhetoric is that in place of "something entirely different," they insert two-dimensional cliches of historical American nationalism, dimly remembered at a folk level from the 1920s. It was no less nonsense then, but at least it had an aristocratic leadership caste, which was actually capable of governing a country. In short, it had Calvin Coolidge. Sarah Palin is no Calvin Coolidge.

There are three basic attitudes toward government in America today. There are people who believe government is there to serve them; there are people who believe government is there to serve others; there are people who believe government is there to subsidize them. In our medieval metaphor, these correspond to peasants, gentlemen, and varlets respectively. The last is the caste Marx called the "lumpenproletariat" - and he was no fan of this group, or of political movements that exploited it. Respectable people say "underclass."

When gentlemen look at progressivism, they see a movement whose purpose is to help the underclass, those whose plight is no fault of their own. When peasants look at progressivism, they see a movement whose purpose is to employ gentlemen in the business of public policy, by using the peasants' money to buy votes from varlets. Who, in the peasants' perception, abuse the patience and generosity of both peasants and gentlemen in almost every imaginable way, and are constantly caressed by every imaginable authority for doing so.

Among gentlemen, the idea that government could be there to serve *us* is almost socially taboo. For instance, San Francisco's public school system, which literally assigns children randomly around the city to aid in the great cause of social homogenization - a cause which makes the war in Afghanistan look like an unqualified success - causes immense headaches, costs or both to the very same social class which sets the public policies of San Francisco. Yet they accept it with hardly a murmur.

Last week I was at a party, at a warehouse space in one of the crackhead districts of SF, at which the subject of crackheads came up. The woman across the table, a member of my social class, expressed great sympathy for this class. I asked her if she had ever been victimized by such. She said: "two days ago, someone smashed a window in my car and stole my iPhone."

And she perceived this crime through a pure Jean Valjean lens, with no sense at all that she had been *personally* victimized - much less, victimized by the government. Or a judge. Or an ideology. Or whatever. Rather, she considered it entirely normal and even laudable for a sophisticated, modern person to live in a city in which an iPhone cannot be left visible on a car seat, and she considered herself an idiot who had, for her $500 or whatever, purchased a valuable lesson about modern urban living. (She literally expressed the idea that an impoverished person had sold her iPhone to buy food. To be fair, she was in her early '20s.)

Who would think this way? Well, perhaps if you were a Frenchman in 1944, and your property was looted and vandalized, by American soldiers on their way to kick hell out of the Nazis, you might think this way. The State Department thought this way about the killing of Cleo Noel. This is the way you think about your own clients and the excesses and abuses they commit. Certainly, if this woman's car had been vandalized by cops, tea partiers, etc, she would have been enraged for life. We hate our enemies and not our allies - it is only natural.

Peasants see a patron-client relationship between the gentlemen and the varlets - a relationship not at all unlike the late Roman relationship of _clientela_, where a patrician measured his social status by the vast army of plebeians that battened on his trenches. Again, what to the gentleman appears as a noble act of charity, compassion, etc, to the coarse and cynical peasant reveals itself as a purchase of political power, with his tax dollars if not his physical safety. Therefore a vision of the gallows arises in his hindbrain.

Can both be correct? Of course they can. Every case, in every detail, is different, and every case can be viewed from both perspectives. As Solzhenitsyn said, the line between good and evil runs through every human heart.

And again - are the tea partiers thinking this story? No such elaborate historio-political fantasy has ever come anywhere close to their heads. But it is, I would argue, the reality of history in our time. Truth, even if not realized in totum, glints off every surface. Therefore, it is an emotional subtext that spawns a continuous stream of inchoate, inarticulate and inexplicable rage. Precisely as your New School prof observes!

133 Comments:

Anonymous Genius said...

Columbia MD was semi-rural? Cattle and grain silos? I don't think so.

July 12, 2010 at 8:28 AM  
Anonymous Mudpuppy said...

Should your friend need to approach the backlash of urban white ethnics with the professional distance of an anthropologist, I recall Jonathan Rieder's Canarsie as worth reading, supplemented with Caro's The Power Broker and Cannato's The Ungovernable City.

July 12, 2010 at 9:06 AM  
Blogger xlbrl said...

Strange that the rage and nonsense of the tea-party peasant is benign and intuitive, unlike that philosophy of aristocratic leadership passed through generations.
You are not the aristocratic leadership, you are the aristocratic opposition.

July 12, 2010 at 9:24 AM  
Blogger Borepatch said...

@Genius, yes, Columbia was semi-rural at least in the 1980s. Gorman Road had several cattle or horse farms. There were others, but this one was so pastoral that I went out of my way to drive it.

And to our esteemed host, it is likely true that Sarah Palin is no Calvin Coolidge (neither was Ronald Reagan, BTW). However, there's been so much disinformation put out about her that I'm skeptical of most lines of argument that start "Sarah Palin is too dumb ..."

Not, of course, that you did that, but still. She has demonstrated traits that legitimately would attract many in the Tea Party - taking on her own (famously corrupt) Party Establishment, and beating them, for a start.

Is she Presidential material? I certainly don't know. However, looking back over the past 40 years, it's hard to see her worse than many of the occupants of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave, and plausible to see her as better than many.

"Not an Intellectual" these days isn't a bug, it's a feature. At least, looking at most of what passes for "intellectual".

July 12, 2010 at 9:43 AM  
Blogger Studd Beefpile said...

MM overrates the peasants. The anger comes from the flow of money from them to the underclass, not the relationship between the underclass and the gentlemen. The gentlemen are still largely invisible to them, despite their growing numbers, for a variety of reasons, though perhaps the recent stirrings against public employee unions signify the beginning of a dawning of awareness.

July 12, 2010 at 10:30 AM  
Blogger G. M. Palmer said...

The TP folks I've come in contact with expressly understand the patron relationship.

That is, they understand that rich libruls is buyin the votes of poor lazy folk with the TP's money.

They don't understand how deep the rabbit hole goes, however, and are systematically opposed to the elimination of republican democracy.

As long as they wrap themselves in the constitution, they're not going to get anywhere.

July 12, 2010 at 10:53 AM  
Anonymous josh said...

I don't know Studd; the peasants I know hate what they consider to be anti-Americanism among the godless liberals.

July 12, 2010 at 11:18 AM  
Anonymous Reinhart said...

They don't understand how deep the rabbit hole goes, however...

By which you mean that they don't understand that the patronage racket is explicit behind closed doors, or that "welfare" arguably extends to all sorts of things they like, e.g. student loans for college?

July 12, 2010 at 11:28 AM  
Blogger Gandalin said...

Mencius,

Nicely described, I like the gentleman-peasant-varlet trinity.

It is good to be reminded that the reality of Detroit's rapid trajectory is as stark as any civilizational collapse in history.

The peasants have every right to rage against the elite who would tumble the entire country into the cesspool into which they tubled Detroit -- the cesspool of atheistic libertinage gilded with faux altruism.

Can they do anything about it before the rot spreads and a general conflagration consumes the world's wealth? Maybe not. But that is no reason not to try. Horatio, bridge, etc. Volker in Etzel's Hall, etc.

July 12, 2010 at 11:37 AM  
Anonymous Stirner said...

The Slaughter of Cities by E. Michael Jones is an interesting exploration of MM's point about how the underclass was used to clear out the ethnic blue-collar catholics from many major cities (including Detroit).

According to Jones, the WASP establishment wanted to better "Americanize" the urban Catholics by dispersing them into the suburbs. Jones likely takes his argument too far, but there is an intriguing correlation between urban highways / "slum" clearance and old Catholic neighborhoods in Boston, Detroit, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and NYC.

July 12, 2010 at 11:41 AM  
Anonymous Michael S. said...

I'll second Stirner's recommendation of "The Slaughter of Cities." A point that particularly resonates with MM's proposed aetiology of progressivism is the role of Quakers in Jones's account of the strategy of breaking up ethnic-Catholic neighborhoods.

Antipathy to Roman Catholic immigrants, and the desire on the part of social engineers to their "foreign ways," dates back almost to the moment they began to come here. Certainly it accounts for much of the character of the American public school system from the time of Horace Mann forward, including the persistent tendency of school teachers and administrators to behave as adversaries towards the parents of their charges. MM would not be surprised that Mann was originally a Calvinist who later became a Unitarian. He ended up as president of Antioch College, renowned (according to George Will) for "repressive liberalism unleavened by learning." Mann ought to be regarded as a key figure in the progressive-universalist rogues' gallery.

Not surprisingly, the anti-Catholic animus was strongest in Puritan New England, much less so in the religiously more diverse South. James G. Blaine, who coined the phrase "rum, Romanism and rebellion," was from Maine. The so-called "Blaine amendments" that forbid any sort of direct governmental aid to schools having religious affiliation, present in most state constitutions, are named after him. Since few Protestant denominations did or do operate schools on a large scale, the obvious target of the Blaine amendments was and is Catholic education.

July 12, 2010 at 1:18 PM  
Anonymous Michael S. said...

Borepatch - with reference to your remarks about Sarah Palin, I have found nothing more representative of the Cathedral's view of her than the opinion of Sam Tanenhaus in his "New Yorker" article of Dec. 7, 2009:

"To an extent unmatched by any recent major political figure, she offers the erasure of any distinction - in skill, experience, intellect - between the governing and the governed."

Could there be any more unvarnished expression of liberal snobbery? Any more obvious evidence that the egalitarianism so reflexively mouthed by the left is nothing but an hypocritical charade?

I am not quite sure what to make of Palin, but I rejoice that she has evoked such a revealing outburst. It will be awfully hard in future for someone like Tanenhaus to pretend that he and the rest of the left harbor naught but selfless devotion to the "peepul." I almost look forward to a Palin administration just in order to see how well the Tanenhauses of this country, who so clearly conceive themselves as numbered amongst 'the governing,' fancy being 'the governed.'

July 12, 2010 at 2:00 PM  
Blogger Borepatch said...

@Michael S:

Agreed that this is Class Warfare wrt Palin. She's not a member of their club. What I find interesting is that the Usual Suspects took the noxious brew that was Bush Derangement Syndrome and added a heaping helping of misogyny - and then pat themselves on the back for being so "Progressive".

July 12, 2010 at 2:44 PM  
Anonymous Steve Johnson said...

"The Slaughter of Cities by E. Michael Jones is an interesting exploration of MM's point about how the underclass was used to clear out the ethnic blue-collar catholics from many major cities (including Detroit)."

This is an interesting piece about exactly why the gentlemen had to clear the peasants from the cities (even if it meant giving them to varlets for a time):

http://www.prospect.org/cs/articles?article=then_no_one_would_be_a_democrat_anymore_

From the article:

"The unusual lunch hour crowd which had, by now, inundated the area completely from building line to building line, loudly applauded the construction workers and their singing of the National Anthem; many onlookers joined in, openly displaying much fervor.

At this juncture a neatly groomed conservatively dressed middle aged man suddenly took a position in the pedestal in front of the statue of George Washington where he thumbed his nose at the construction worker group, shouted obscenities, and ultimately committed an act of desecration upon one of the American flags implanted there by them.

He was variously reported as blowing his nose in the flag, tearing the flag with his teeth, and eating the flag.

The riot began. Workers singled out for beating boys with the longest hair. The weapons of choice were their orange and yellow hard hats.

[...]

The mob moved on to nearby Pace University, setting fire to a banner reading VIETNAM, LAOS, CAMBODIA, KENT. The glass doors to the building were chained shut from the inside against attack. Hard hats crashed through them and chased down unkempt students, joined by conservative students angry at strikers interfering with their education. Some longhairs were beaten with lead pipes wrapped in American flags. Trinity Church became a makeshift field hospital (the mob ripped down the Red Cross banner). The New York Times ran a picture the next day of a construction worker and a man in a tie charging down a cobblestone street to beat someone with an American flag. Pete Hamill, who had only the previous year offered his solidarity to "The Revolt of the White Lower Middle Class," now withdrew his endorsement in horror: "The police collaborated with the construction workers in the same way that Southern sheriffs used to collaborate with the rednecks when the rednecks were beating up freedom riders."

Police made only six arrests. Perhaps they agreed with the construction worker who told The Wall Street Journal, "I'm doing this because my brother got wounded in Vietnam, and I think this will help our boys over there by pulling this country together." "

Read the whole thing.

July 12, 2010 at 2:46 PM  
Anonymous Steve Johnson said...

On topic of the purge of the cities of the peasants by the varlets (with the implicit and explicit backing of the gentlemen):

(from http://www.prospect.org/cs/articles?article=then_no_one_would_be_a_democrat_anymore_ )

"The unusual lunch hour crowd which had, by now, inundated the area completely from building line to building line, loudly applauded the construction workers and their singing of the National Anthem; many onlookers joined in, openly displaying much fervor.

At this juncture a neatly groomed conservatively dressed middle aged man suddenly took a position in the pedestal in front of the statue of George Washington where he thumbed his nose at the construction worker group, shouted obscenities, and ultimately committed an act of desecration upon one of the American flags implanted there by them.

He was variously reported as blowing his nose in the flag, tearing the flag with his teeth, and eating the flag.

The riot began. Workers singled out for beating boys with the longest hair. The weapons of choice were their orange and yellow hard hats. "

The money quote:

"The New York Times ran a picture the next day of a construction worker and a man in a tie charging down a cobblestone street to beat someone with an American flag. Pete Hamill, who had only the previous year offered his solidarity to "The Revolt of the White Lower Middle Class," now withdrew his endorsement in horror: "The police collaborated with the construction workers in the same way that Southern sheriffs used to collaborate with the rednecks when the rednecks were beating up freedom riders."

Police made only six arrests. Perhaps they agreed with the construction worker who told The Wall Street Journal, "I'm doing this because my brother got wounded in Vietnam, and I think this will help our boys over there by pulling this country together." "

Guess the gentlemen had to find different allies.

July 12, 2010 at 2:49 PM  
Anonymous Steve Johnson said...

Sorry about the double.

Blogger gave me an error with the first post and indicated that it did not go through.

July 12, 2010 at 2:51 PM  
Blogger G. M. Palmer said...

Reinhart:

They don't understand that the root of the problem is in the constitution.

July 12, 2010 at 2:55 PM  
Anonymous Scriptor Ignotus said...

I too was going to mention Jones' Slaughter of Cities. While I've only read a summary, and just now ordered the book, one incident that sticks out:

concerned anti-racist Quakers in Philadelphia tried to integrate both a Quaker neighborhood and a Catholic neighborhood. The Quakers' co-religionists effectively shut down activities in their neighborhood, leaving more resources available for the Catholic blocks.

Pornophiles should also sample Jones' Libido Dominandi: Sexual liberation and political control.

His interpretative jaunts can exceed the facts, but even the facts themselves are rarely reported outside of his work.

July 12, 2010 at 4:00 PM  
Blogger Studd Beefpile said...

I should have been more explicit. Palmer is exactly right, and the rabbit hole is an apt metaphor. In my experience, they think the problem is Nancy Pelosi or Obama, or whomever. They don't see millions of people behind them.

July 12, 2010 at 4:14 PM  
OpenID ctd said...

That NYT article has a lot of thumb-sucking, even for the NYT. The initial Tea Party motivations were clearly anti-bailout and anti-stimulus.

Being angry over the USG declaring an "emergency" which takes money from workers and gives it to big banks and well-connected cronies (but I repeat myself) is not as hard to understand as NYT (or Mencius) make it out to be.

July 12, 2010 at 5:37 PM  
Blogger Mitchell said...

I'm not an American, but, doesn't the decline of Detroit have something to do with the decline of the American automotive industrty?

July 12, 2010 at 8:06 PM  
Anonymous jkr said...

Jones' Slaughter of Cities doesn't seem to be available online via the normal pirated channels, but here's a youtube lecture on the subject:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=abQPZDkuUt0

Interestingly, Jones in his works deals with the Jewish role as well as the Protestant, in wrecking the world, which Mencius pretends doesn't exist, like you'd expect from a little fag.

But hey, you gotta take the good with the bad.

July 12, 2010 at 8:22 PM  
Anonymous Leonard said...

CTD: agreed.

To me the plain meaning of the NYT piece was as follows:

the tea partiers are angry. Not like us. Angry I tell you! They are furiously angrily raging in their furious and angry rage! Anger! Them! Fury! Rage!

... it scares me...

July 12, 2010 at 8:25 PM  
Blogger Alrenous said...

So, how likely, do you think, is it that the Varlets will feel just as betrayed at the end of the crusade against the peasants as the peasants now do?

Also, to what degree is this an American phenomenon? The basic immigration mechanism has obviously spread, but are elites elsewhere using it for its original purpose?

July 13, 2010 at 2:09 AM  
Blogger Mitchell said...

Just to clarify my comment: didn't the decline of the American automotive industry cause the decline of Detroit? At least, in part?

July 13, 2010 at 4:35 AM  
Anonymous josh said...

Mitchel,

For the most part I'd say you have the causation backwards. Doing a quick google search you will see that crime spiked and the demogaphics began changing before peak automotive employment. Once Detroit began suffering a major human capitol drain, the Nash equilibrium was the total collapse we've witnessed.

July 13, 2010 at 4:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Alrenous, slightly related to your question: a new academic journal calling for papers in using immigration to 'fight empire'.

link: http://accursedshare.blogspot.com/2010/05/cfp-immigration-against-empire.html

Quote: "This issue situates immigration (and other forms of nomadism) as a disruptive event against Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri's concept of Empire. Between Arizona's new immigration law in the United States and the French government's response to immigration, it would seem that as the "Third World" pops up in the "First World" neo-liberal policing comes into view of the Global North. In light of the various reactions to these events, responses from the radical Left, in and outside of academia, need to be formulated in order to map resistances and the role of the immigrant and the exile within the Empire."

July 13, 2010 at 6:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

re: the above 'immigration against the world'

I also googled the various names involved in the project (they have a website), all typical upper-middle class white people (the gentlemen). The males also look like they just walked out of an Apple store i.e. skinny white guys with dark rimmed glasses. Michael S. also mentioned the New Yorker writer Sam Tanenhaus, I just googled him. White guy with black rimmed glasses. I wonder if he owns an iphone, listens to Arcade Fire, and bats off to Chomsky.

July 13, 2010 at 6:13 AM  
Anonymous Name/URL said...

Mitchell, go read "The Origins of the Urban Crisis: Race and Inequality in Postwar Detroit" by Thomas Sugrue and "Faith in the City: Preaching Radical Social Change in Detroit" By Prof. Angela Denise Dillard.

Both those books are by universalists, but like a lot of good universalist books that come out of the polygon they give the game away.

Main highlights:

(1) discusses the influence of Protestant theology on the New Negro Movement.

https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/New_Negro#New_Negro_Movement

(2) Both books describe that Detroit was going downhill before the automobile stuff (due to ethnic conflict bolstered by our white, NPR-listening, bohemian overlords).

July 13, 2010 at 6:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is there some evidence of "tea party rage"? They seem more like a rehab support group than an angry mob.

The peasants comparison is a good one but Msr. Moldbug's characterization is not accurate, and the reality is far more in line with history.

The medieval peasant had almost no interaction with any recognizable state government. Peasant life focused entirely on the local community. This was not due to any intellectual deficiency but simply because, as Chinese Proverb say, "Sky is high; Emperor is far away."

The local church was the major formal authority. Priests were well-educated (for the times) but satisfied with conformity to established dogma. (Contrast with the machinations of the "international" Church.) The victory of the monarchial "state" following the Peace of Westphalia coincided with the decline and eventual elimination of the peasant class. A significant percentage of the peasantry had already been killed and more driven to refugee status by the time of the Peace. Modern social groups may also not outlast the current restructuring.

Thus Mencius' classification of tea-partiers as "peasants" is apt - these are people who feel that government is largely irrelevant to their lives except in a negative manner, just as to the medieval peasant the "government" armies trampled his crops and slaughtered his livestock. And the tea partiers are correct. The words they speak make complete sense, are easily comprehended, and follow a rational structure. This was true in 1630 and is true today. "Peasant" does not mean "stupid". However, Mencius is correct at a rational argument can be constructed of cardboard. 17th century peasants perhaps better comprehended reality than do their modern equivalent.

As intelligently argued by MM, the tea partier has been taught that he should have a say in government and not simply pray that the armies pass him by. Sadly, the tea parties are composed of folk who love 'their' government and believe that progressivism is merely an aberrant diversion from a divinely-inspired governance model. Progressives are indeed safer than they think, because Tea Party America honestly believes it is only a matter of time before it "wins".

The real angry mob is not seen at tea party events. They are busy either 1) stockpiling guns and ammunition in order to overthrow the “corrupt and evil system”, or 2) stockpiling guns and ammunition in preparation for the eventual collapse of law and order. Tea Partyers might strap on a handgun (nothing in the chamber) to “exercise their 2nd amendment right.” The real angry mob couldn’t give fudge about the 2nd amendment, and the first time we will see their scoped battle rifles will be when the hollow points are flying. These distinct groups do not drink in the same bars.

July 13, 2010 at 6:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is there some evidence of "tea party rage"? They seem more like rehab support groups than cross-burnings.

The peasants analogy is a good one but Msr. Moldbug's characterization is not historically accurate, and the reality is far more in line with the history.

The typical medieval peasant had almost no interaction with any form of statist government. The peasant's focus was the local community. This was not due to any intellectual deficiency but simply because, as Ancient Chinese Proverb say, "Sky is high; Emperor is far away."

The major formal authority in the peasant's life was the local priest. Priests were well-educated (for the times) but were satisfied with conformity to established dogma. (Contrast with the machinations of the "international" Church.) The sociopolitical transformation following victory of the monarchial "state" in the Peace of Westphalia coincided with the decline and ultimate elimination of the peasant class. A significant percentage of the peasantry had already been killed (and more driven to refugee status) by the time of the Peace. Modern social groups may also not survive a restructuring.

Mencius' classification of tea-partiers as "peasants" is apt - these are people who feel that the government is largely irrelevant to their lives except in a negative manner, just as to the medieval peasant "government" armies trampled his crops and slaughtered his livestock. In this the tea partiers are absolutely right, their words comprehensible, their arguments rational. "Peasant" does not mean "stupid".

However MM has intelligently argued that the Tea Partyer has been led to believe that "government" is supposed to work for him - unlike the medieval peasant who simply prayed that the armies would pass him by. The tea parties love "their" government, and honestly believe progressivism is simply an aberration from which they can soon return to an idealized, divinely-inspired governance model. A rational argument can still be constructed of cardboard. Progressives are safer than they think, because Tea Party America doesn't know what the rules are and thus believes it has the winning team. 17th century peasants probably had a better understanding of reality than do their modern equivalents.

The real angry mob is not seen at tea party events. They are busy either 1) stockpiling guns and ammunition in order to overthrow the "corrupt and evil system", or 2) stockpiling guns and ammunition in preparation for the collapse of law and order. A Tea Partyer might strap on a handgun (nothing in the chamber) to "exercise her 2nd amendment right". The real angry mob doesn't give fudge for the 2nd amendment and the first we will see of their scoped battle rifles will be the muzzle flash. These distinct groups do not drink in the same bars.

July 13, 2010 at 6:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is there some evidence of "tea party rage"? They seem more like rehab support groups than cross-burnings.

The peasant analogy is a good one but Msr. Moldbug's characterization is not historically accurate, and the reality is far more in line with the history.

The typical medieval peasant had almost no interaction with any form of statist government. The peasant's focus was the local community. This was not due to any intellectual deficiency but simply because, as Ancient Chinese Proverb say, "Sky is high; Emperor is far away."

The major formal authority in the peasant's life was the local priest. Priests were well-educated (for the times) but were satisfied with conformity to established dogma. (Contrast with the machinations of the "international" Church.) The sociopolitical transformation following victory of the monarchial "state" in the Peace of Westphalia coincided with the decline and ultimate elimination of the peasant class. A significant percentage of the peasantry had already been killed (and more driven to refugee status) by the time of the Peace. Modern social groups may also not survive a restructuring.

Mencius' classification of tea-partiers as "peasants" is apt - these are people who feel that the government is largely irrelevant to their lives except in a negative manner, just as to the medieval peasant "government" armies trampled his crops and slaughtered his livestock. In this the tea partiers are absolutely right, their words comprehensible, their arguments rational. "Peasant" does not mean "stupid".

However a rational argument can still be constructed of cardboard and MM has intelligently argued that the Tea Partyer has been led to believe that "government" is supposed to work for him - unlike the medieval peasant who simply prayed that the armies would pass him by. The tea parties love "their" government, and honestly believe progressivism is simply an aberration from which they can soon return to an idealized, divinely-inspired governance model. Progressives are safer than they think, because Tea Party America doesn't know what the rules are and thus believes it has the winning team. 17th century peasants probably had a closer view of reality than do their modern equivalents.

The real angry mob is not seen at tea party events. They are busy either 1) stockpiling guns and ammunition in order to overthrow the "corrupt and evil system", or 2) stockpiling guns and ammunition in preparation for the collapse of law and order. A Tea Partyer might strap on a handgun (nothing in the chamber) to "exercise her 2nd amendment right". The real angry mob doesn't give fudge for the 2nd amendment and the first we will see of their scoped battle rifles will be the muzzle flashes. These distinct groups do not drink in the same bars.

July 13, 2010 at 6:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Moderator:

Deleting all but the 6:58 "Anonymous" comment would be appropriate - and BTW, Blogger's comment interface is not exactly working on all cylinders.

July 13, 2010 at 7:01 AM  
Blogger G. M. Palmer said...

Indeed, double anon, mormons, who are mostly conservative and sympathetic to the TB folks, believe that the u.s. Constitution was divinely inspired.

July 13, 2010 at 7:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the Tea Partyer has been led to believe that "government" is supposed to work for him - unlike the medieval peasant who simply prayed that the armies would pass him by. The tea parties love "their" government, and honestly believe progressivism is simply an aberration from which they can soon return to an idealized, divinely-inspired governance model.

Meh, you could argue that medieval peasants thought that the bad local lord was an aberration from the idealized, divinely inspired way the government was "supposed" to work, in which a benevolent lord provided them with protection in exchange for their allegiance. Delusion is timeless.

July 13, 2010 at 7:21 AM  
Anonymous Leonard said...

Mitchell, certainly the decline of the auto industry would have been a problem for Detroit and the Detroi area, even absent white flight. But Detroit is an area with almost 5M people -- it is diverse. People can change jobs.

If you want to look at the population dynamics, there's a good page here: http://www.somacon.com/p469.php. It shows the population changes in the Detroit region and city, as well as for Michigan and the USA, for each census from 1900 to 200. Notice that the Detroit region only declines in two censuses, and only by a little. But Detroit city declines radically in each census from 1960 onward.

Some of that decline was probably due to job losses in auto factories within Detroit city limits. Some of it was the interstate system making it possible to leave. (In particular, this explains the moderate 1960 decline and probably some of the 1970 decline, since it probably took a while for the impact of the 60s to be felt.) But most of it was people deciding to leave because the city had become dangerous. People will put up with a lot, but they will not subject their children to "bad schools".

July 13, 2010 at 8:16 AM  
Anonymous PA said...

If Moldbug's model of class warfare is right, and I think it basically is, it doesn't explain the Brahmins' foaming rage at the Tea Partiers.

If the Brahmins/Gentlemen have things so under control, their attitude toward the Peasants should be one of condescening benevolence, not fear and rage.

July 13, 2010 at 8:55 AM  
Anonymous Leonard said...

PA, they have things under control but they don't know that, because they see the surface appearance of the system, not the underlying reality.

To surface appearance, the system is democratic. If the Republicans manage to capture the Congress and the Presidency, oh no! They'll do something crazy like overturn healthcare reform!

MM discusses this dynamic in many places; one was patchwork 3:
Note the function of populist and tribal voters in the institutionalist's mind. The populist electorate supplies the bogeyman. The fear of a populist takeover, which is theoretically always a possibility and has even happened once or twice in history (eg, Nazi Germany), can keep even the most jaded of institutionalist voters coming back to the polls. Even though it never seems to actually happen.

BTW, I think their attitude towards the TPers is condescending. It is not benevolent, of course, because they are enemies.

July 13, 2010 at 9:14 AM  
Anonymous Michael S. said...

The gentleman/peasant/varlet classification, while at least consistent in terminology (unlike MM's earlier Brahmin/optimate/vaisya/dalit/helot taxonomy), does not account entirely for the character of U.S. politics.

I am persuaded by Pareto's and Mosca's analysis that political conflict always results from a difference between two competing elites or elite factions. Other groups may be involved as sources of support for one or the other, but below the elite level, people are too busy trying to survive to be very much engaged in politics.

The anonymous comment to the effect that mediæval peasants had almost no contact with any recognizable state government is true. Their government was that of the baron on whose land they lived, of the church, and (on those occasions when they travelled to a burgh of regality on a pilgrimage, or to trade for what they could not make for themselves) of whatever burghal authorities had jurisdiction there. Kings and royal courts were remote.

The political conflict of this era typically arose between two elites, just as Pareto and Mosca suggest. They were, on one hand, the landed interests (noblesse de l'épée, Uradel) who held their feus by virtue of military service in time of war, and on the other, the courtiers whose rank was conferred in recognition of their civil service (noblesse de la robe, Briefsadel). These differences appeared at a very early period, and remained operative well into the eighteenth century, when the typical European political division was still between court and country factions.

Maybe it is not apparent to someone living in San Francisco like MM, but not all "gentlemen" are progressive-universalists. There are people who correspond, to a "country party" that, if not aristocratic, is at least plutocratic, here in the vast center of the country - business owners, regional and community bankers, landlords, and rentiers. Indeed, many of them have emerged unscathed from first-tier universities - not so much because their propaganda was rejected, as simply ignored. I grew up among such people, and can attest that they are instinctively conservative. You don't suppose, do you, that someone like Michelle Bachmann raised her astonishing campaign fund from "peasants"? To be sure, large contributors to such politicians are under no illusions; they simply support what appears to be the lesser of evils.

Opposed to these people in the "court" party are of course the usual crowd of parasites, sycophants, and hangers-on of government, who derive their social and economic position from their proximity to power. Behind these, however, are the state-capitalists whose fortunes are dependent on the rent-seeking opportunities afforded them by politicians.

Broadly speaking, then, the political conflict of the present day really lies between the millionaire country elite (whose money, though smaller, is typically older) and the billionaire court elite (jumped-up, nouveau riche) of New York, California, and the suburbs of Washington, D.C.

The country elite, like the provincial noblesse of the Vendée, is closer to its peasantry than to anyone in the capital - they are natural companions in arms. On the other hand, the court elite allies itself with the urban canaille. So far the latter have prevailed, largely because the former, like their counterparts centuries ago, do not completely understand the nature or the magnitude of their enemies.

July 13, 2010 at 11:43 AM  
Blogger River Cocytus said...

Riffing off of Michael's point, I think that recently we're seeing more of a crossover between 'country' and 'court' elite (from the former to the latter) and part of the reason why the remaining real country elite don't get the magnitude of the enemy is because of this.

I for one, am not sure that I could tell whether a millionaire businessman was meaningfully a country elite or a court elite as it were - and how much has the line blurred in favor of the court? Isn't it a bit like how the Sun King used to force his nobles to come visit him in his court instead of governing? (I may have that wrong, been awhile on the Fr. History)

When I think of bankers for instance, I have known and still know some people who are bankers and who are definitely part of the 'country elite' but given the shenanigans with the bailout, I wonder how meaningful the distinction really is anymore? There is a tendency among the court gentlemen to refer to corporations solely as the tool of the country gentlemen, but this is either a ruse or ignorance or both. As early as you want to go back you can find corporations with massive ambition playing nice-nice with the government for privileges. The history is almost opaque as it is taught in the schools - trust busting for instance was more of the government colluding with some companies against others. Prohibition was not strictly a puritanical moral movement, but also was funded by some companies that were unhappy with alcohol as an energy source.

As the court gains more power, it is better and more favorable in the long run to side with the court, even if your values and your heart are in the country.

RE: Palin, I think there is a good Roman analogue to her but I don't recall his name. If a commoner becomes the leader it either means that the real aristocracy is impotent or there is in place a radical system that allows such a thing without a bat of the eye. Since we don't have a random lottery, I'm guessing Palin's ascendancy will mark the personal impotency of the court, even as their influence climbs yet closer to its zenith.

Obama was a play for a return to personal potency in the court, but he is too young, unformed; a virtual child emperor.

July 13, 2010 at 12:49 PM  
Anonymous Michael S. said...

On the bank "bailout," I can tell you from personal experience that the story behind it is radically different from what has been represented to the public.

Government money was forced by Paulson on many banks that didn't need and didn't want it. The rationale given for this was that the Treasury did not want a public perception that banks which had received the money were troubled. So banks such as J.P. Morgan and Wells Fargo had to take the funds, even though they didn't need them, at the same time that Citi, which did, took them.

The conditions attached were onerous. The government was to be issued preferred stock, paying a 5% dividend for the first four years, and a still higher one if not redeemed before then. Not only (as with all preferred stock) did this dividend have to be paid before a dividend could be paid to stockholders of any other class, but the government asserted a veto power over the payment of any other dividend even after its own were paid. The preferred stock also came with warrants for common stock. Executive salaries and directors' fees fell under government limits. Finally, government reserved the right to add other conditions unspecified at the time the funds were placed.

After the Treasury saddled the big nationwide banks with this, it began working down to the regional and larger community banks, where the reception was uniformly negative. My own bank was spared because it was limited by its charter (like many others) to one class of stock, and by the time government figured out a way around this conflict in its own laws, the public support for the TARP program had fallen even further from its initially low level, and seemed to be running out of steam.

It is very difficult to get anything like a 5% return on capital, especially in the environment that existed after October of 2008. All of the big banks that took TARP money have paid it back as quickly as they were able. Treasury actually MADE money on the TARP funds placed with banks - even Citi.

The speed with which the plan was unveiled and the conditions that surrounded it made me think that it had been on the shelf for a long time, just waiting for the opportunity - kind of like the Schlieffen plan, except more rewarding. What it amounted to was a huge power and money grab in which the earnings of sound banks were mulcted, initially perhaps with the purpose of shoring up the weak ones. Ultimately, even the weak ones have mostly paid it back. The real bail-out went to Fannie and Freddie, and to a lesser extent to GM and Chrysler.

There is a very odd distribution of bank assets in this country, which might be described as hourglass-shaped. A very few big nationwide banks hold over 50% of domestic deposits, and about 8,000 community and regional banks hold the rest, most of those having assets less than $1 billion. Your country gentlemen will be found amongst the owners and managers of these little banks.

The mega-banks - those deemed "too big to fail" - are the products of a fairly obscure banking law change called the Riegle-Neal Act of 1994. Everyone likes to blame Gramm-Leach-Bliley, which repealed parts of the Glass-Steagall Act's prohibition on combining commercial and investment banking, as a cause of the meltdown. This doesn't stand up too well on investigation. Riegle-Neal, on the other hand, is directly responsible for the creation of mammoth disasters like Citi, because it broke down the barriers to inter-state branch banking.

Before Riegle-Neal, bankers who wanted to do business across state lines had to charter separate banks in each state, separately capitalized. The banks could be held by a multi-bank holding company, but the separate capitalization requirement compartmentalized the risk. The wisdom of this requirement was not appreciated in 1994. Unfortunately, it still isn't appreciated in 2010. Mega-banks play the Washington game very well, and legislators know that little ones could never pay nearly as rewardingly. And thus the court party burgeons!

July 13, 2010 at 3:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not clear on the point of "cleansing" the Catholics from Detroit etc. They weren't killed, or expelled from the country, so they can still vote in the 'burbs where they now live.

July 13, 2010 at 3:06 PM  
Anonymous jkr said...

Anon,

The way it seems to have worked is this... WW2 brought about the large scale relocation of blacks from the south into the northern cities, to work in the armaments industries. The blacks established their communities, and the largely Catholic whites had theirs, and they were separate.

With the judicial fiat ending segregation, the white communities lost their legal right to avoid living amongst blacks. This by itself did not cause the Catholic/white exodus from city to suburbs. The next step was urban renewal or planning as described by Jones, whereby areas designated as 'blight' were destroyed, forcing the block by block movement of blacks into the white areas.

The development of the suburbs provided an outlet for the catholic neighborhoods to escape from living among blacks, as all humans who live alongside them naturally want to do. So white flight into the suburbs was the means by which ethnic/Catholic communities were broken down and blended into the generic American white middle class.

According to Jones, this was done deliberately by the WASP progressives, first through the CPI-OWI-OSS structure of intelligence agenices of the WW1-WW2 period... and afterward by private agencies like the ACLU, etc.

I haven't read the book but recommend the series of youtube videos of Jones' lecture on the subject. It's url is posted above.

July 13, 2010 at 4:03 PM  
Blogger John said...

I have to admit that I'm surprised that there was no mention of Carlyle's Chartism - "How inexpressibly useful were true insight into it; a genuine understanding by the upper classes of society what it is that the under classes intrinsically mean; a clear interpretation of the thought which at heart torments these wild inarticulate souls, struggling there, with inarticulate uproar, like dumb creatures in pain, unable to speak what is in them!"

July 13, 2010 at 5:25 PM  
Blogger G. M. Palmer said...

Michael S.

Fascinating. Thank you for that.

July 13, 2010 at 8:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

According to Jones, this was done deliberately by the WASP progressives, first through the CPI-OWI-OSS structure of intelligence agenices of the WW1-WW2 period... and afterward by private agencies like the ACLU, etc.

OK, but the Catholics were Democrats, right? Seems like the progressives were simply replacing one Democrat bloc (Catholics) with another (Negroes).

July 13, 2010 at 9:12 PM  
Blogger Studd Beefpile said...

JKR> There's another factor at worse besides the racial angle, simple misrule. When the machines ran the cities, they had an incentive to run them well, but once the machines got nationalized during the new deal, they lost that incentive and, as one world expect, grew increasingly bloated and wasteful.

July 13, 2010 at 10:29 PM  
Blogger G. M. Palmer said...

A question: is our motivator power or status and how inextricable are the two?

July 13, 2010 at 10:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think the more important question is: where is TGGP? I notice no wall of italic text with intermittent plain text links to overcoming bias.

Has he become caught in a cut-and-paste loop, where he argues himself to death with a cut-and-paste bot?

July 13, 2010 at 10:52 PM  
Anonymous Scriptor Ignotus said...

"OK, but the Catholics were Democrats, right? Seems like the progressives were simply replacing one Democrat bloc (Catholics) with another (Negroes)."

The Catholic part of the New Deal coalition was conservative socially and also very anti-communist while being pro-labor. Anti-anti-communist progressives needed to defang this faction. I believe Jones has tracked down evidence that during WWII some USG officials saw U.S. Catholics as fascist sympathizers and possible fifth columnists, while worrying about their continued geographic concentration.

Catholic demographic power, made manifest in the victory of John F. Kennedy, had to be undermined for an eventual progressive victory.

July 13, 2010 at 11:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A large US city made up mostly of non-NAM's will not have its fate decided by the fortunes of a single industry.

Witness how Pittsburgh recovered quite well from the collapse of the US steel industry:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pittsburgh
(...)
While the city is historically known for its steel industry, today its economy is largely based on healthcare, education, technology, robotics, and financial services. The region is also becoming a hub for oil and natural gas companies' Marcellus Shale production.[14] The city has redeveloped abandoned industrial sites with new housing, shopping and offices, such as the Waterfront and the SouthSide Works. While Pittsburgh faced economic troubles in the 1980s as the steel industry waned, modern Pittsburgh is economically strong. The housing market is relatively stable despite a national subprime mortgage crisis, and Pittsburgh added jobs in 2008 even as the national economy entered a significant jobs recession.[15] This positive economic trend is in contrast to the 1980s, when Pittsburgh lost its manufacturing base in steel and electronics, and corporate jobs in the oil (Gulf Oil), electronics (Westinghouse), chemical (Koppers) and defense (Rockwell International) industries.
(...)
Major publications often note Pittsburgh's high livability compared to other American cities. Most recently, in 2010, Forbes and Yahoo! both listed Pittsburgh as the most livable city in the United States.[16][17]
(...)

July 14, 2010 at 1:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A large US city made up mostly of non-NAM's will not have its fate decided by the fortunes of a single industry.

Witness how Pittsburgh recovered quite well from the collapse of the US steel industry:


Population:
1950: 676,806
1970: 520,117
2000: 334,563

So it "recovered quite well" by, uh, shedding half its population.

July 14, 2010 at 3:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So it "recovered quite well" by, uh, shedding half its population.

Yeah. It's a smaller, healthier city-not a smoking ruin like Detroit.

July 14, 2010 at 8:06 AM  
Anonymous brazilian dude said...

moldbug, this might just interest you http://www.seminariodefilosofia.org/node/1381

July 14, 2010 at 8:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a gentleman, why do you care so much about the peasantry and whether they are being jobbed or not? Aren't you meant to rule them like the untermensch they are?

July 14, 2010 at 10:40 AM  
Anonymous Reinhart said...

G.M.Palmer: Thank you for clarifying.

Some anonymous: Aren't you meant to rule them like the untermensch they are?

Grow up. He isn't obliged to live down to your caricature.

July 14, 2010 at 3:31 PM  
Blogger TGGP said...

I'm not a fan of Joshua Cohen, but his take on J. M. Bernstein's op-ed was dead on. That second link also references some debunkings of the claim that the TPers have been violent.

I disregard the lens of medieval class conflict not only because class conflict in general does a poor job of explaining anything, but specifically because Tea Partiers are wealthier & better educated than the general public (they are also older).

"However, the objective observer notes quickly that Fox News is not so much telling its audience what to think, as telling them they are allowed to think what they already think"
One of the best descriptions I've read in a while. Nobody should be perplexed at why Fox is the way it is once they consider how much dough it rakes in.

"Most notably, they mention the fact that this group, historically Democratic Party voters going back to the 19th century ("rum, Romanism and rebellion"), also historically urban, was living in the suburbs and voting for Reagan in 1980"
Andrew Gelman has Catholics a bit below the national average in voting for Reagan in 1980. Reagan got 50.7% of the popular vote then, so I'd say Catholics were basically split. The only election Gelman has Catholics more Republican than the national average is 2000.

Detroit's population peaked in 1950, so by 1965 it shouldn't have been a big surprise that its best days were behind it.

"One cannot help but observe, however, that the decayed areas are where the hyphenated Americans used to live"
When people think immigration, Ellis Island & the Statue of Liberty are some of the first tropes that come to mind. J-Pod has a short memoir of growing up in New York. His neighborhood went through some bad times but is now "the most affluent shtetl the world has ever seen". I know Jews aren't Catholics, but Teddy certainly would have considered them "hyphenated-americans" and J-Pod isn't talking about Protestantized Jews either.

I'm glad you're not boosting Sarah Palin anymore. One should not delight in resembling one's enemies.

What is the distinction between "serve" and "subsidize"? A lot of these old Tea Partiers are quite afraid of any tampering with their entitlements. And subsidizing the elderly (much more so than the poor) is what our welfare state does.

While welfare expenditures in the U.S are not particularly progressive, taxes are. So it doesn't seem right to say that "peasants" are the ones paying taxes (farmers and soldiers are more recipients). Wealthy blue-staters are subsidizing their countrymen.

I don't quite understand the strategic logic of progressives ditching the coalition of F.D.R to buy the votes of NAMs. NAMs don't vote at high rates, and the Dems did far better electorally before. They also achieved a lot more in the old days.


I asked n/a about E. Michael Jones' book. As expected, he thought northern protestants were being maligned for the sins of Catholics & southerners (and of course Jews, but on that he agrees with Jones).

July 14, 2010 at 6:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Detroit's population peaked in 1950, so by 1965 it shouldn't have been a big surprise that its best days were behind it.

Chicago also peaked in population in 1950-yet went on to become a "world city". The vast areas of the of the South and West sides that once housed the white working class are today nothing to write home about, but downtown Chicago and the residential areas surrounding it have undergone a startling renaissance in recent decades.

July 14, 2010 at 7:36 PM  
Anonymous Reinhart said...

TGGP wrote: I disregard the lens of medieval class conflict not only because class conflict in general does a poor job of explaining anything, but specifically because Tea Partiers are wealthier & better educated than the general public (they are also older).

That neither makes them members of the overclass like Soros nor invalidates their status as neo-peasants. Characteristic of all peasantries is a preoccupation with family life and productive activity; the fact that some do this more successfully than others does not change the qualitative reality of their social station. Class is a matter of social function, not of any quantity of wealth.

July 14, 2010 at 8:55 PM  
Anonymous Reinhart said...

Forgive me if I missed this, I'm new: what is Mencius supposed to be coding, anyway? Has he given any hints as to it's function?

July 14, 2010 at 8:57 PM  
Blogger Mitchell said...

Rhodesian-born ex-banker versus democracy.

July 15, 2010 at 1:20 AM  
Blogger Vijay Pawar said...

Driving Catholics from their homes by means of descendants of slaves? Poetic justice.

July 15, 2010 at 5:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Driving Catholics from their homes by means of descendants of slaves? Poetic justice.

Because the transatlantic slave trade and the agricultural economy of the South where both in the hands of Italians and Poles instead of Scots-Irish Calvinists who think bishops wear mitres to hide their horns.

July 15, 2010 at 7:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/08/opinion/08kristof.html?_r=1&th&emc=th


the blacks want rhodesia back

July 15, 2010 at 7:53 AM  
Blogger DR said...

@Reinhart

Mencius is working on a new programming language that's like some sort of crossover between R and Haskell.


@TGGP

Regarding the Tea Party being wealthier than average, probably true, but are they higher status? In many parts of the country the head of a prestigious think tank, NGO or university department is considered higher status than a multi-millionaire hedge fund manager,

July 15, 2010 at 9:22 AM  
Anonymous Michael S. said...

TGGP - re your point that "subsidizing the elderly (much more so than the poor) is what our welfare state does":

In discussing the "welfare state," a distinction needs to be made between social insurance programs (e.g., Social Security, Medicare) for which everyone pays at a flat rate, and from which everyone (at least in theory) benefits, on one hand, and means-tested programs such as the dole, food stamps, AFDC, etc., on the other.

Social insurance is, of course, a mainstay of the welfare state, but it is not what most people understand by "welfare." People make a direct association between what they have paid for Social Security and Medicare, and the benefits they receive. The politicians do nothing to disabuse them of the belief that they are merely receiving what they've paid for, even though the programs do in fact have a redistributive effect, such that low maximum benefit levels combined with income taxation of Social Security income received by the most affluent aged largely vitiates its benefit to them.

Most people who think disparagingly of "welfare" understand by this term the means-tested programs. In contrast to social insurance, they see the beneficiaries of these schemes as receiving benefits for which they have not paid and which they do not therefore deserve.

While this may not be an accurate perception, it is one that has historically defined the debate. It is probably why the politicians devised the monstrous Obamacare bill, including the middle classes as beneficiaries with the hope of making this program as unassailable as Social Security and Medicare are, rather than proposing a more modest plan to benefit the relatively small percentage of the population not already covered by private insurance or some existing government scheme.

It ought to be considered a hopeful sign that the middle classes by and large were not favorable in this instance to the expansion of social insurance, which has hitherto exerted a powerful attraction.

July 15, 2010 at 10:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I disregard the lens of medieval class conflict not only because class conflict in general does a poor job of explaining anything,

It does an excellent job of explaining 200+ years of US foreign and domestic policy. Just as MM said: Brahmins and Dalits versus Vaisyas and Optimates.

July 15, 2010 at 12:33 PM  
Anonymous Steve Johnson said...

Michael S.

"Government money was forced by Paulson on many banks that didn't need and didn't want it. The rationale given for this was that the Treasury did not want a public perception that banks which had received the money were troubled. So banks such as J.P. Morgan and Wells Fargo had to take the funds, even though they didn't need them, at the same time that Citi, which did, took them."

Yes, that's what the public word (and what the CEO of the Ibank where I was working announced in various video conferences to all and sundry) was.

On the other hand, if Citi failed and their creditors took a haircut, do any US banks survive?

Remember that there are no banks out there that are capable of covering their obligations without rolling over their debt. Citi takes a haircut and suddenly JP Morgan can't roll it's debt over; i.e., systematic collapse of the banking sector.

As MM has pounded on time after time, no bank is actually solvent in that they can make payments to their creditors simply by applying payments from their debtors but luckily all* of their debts are in US Dollars and the USG promises to pay their creditors if they cannot. Without this promise they don't have a viable business. Before TARP there was some question if this promise to pay was only for depositors and not for bond holders but after TARP, it's pretty clear.

*look, it's TGGP bait

July 15, 2010 at 9:46 PM  
Anonymous Steve Johnson said...

Oh yeah, forgot to make my point.

Being a banker in a Bagehotian fiat system means you operate at the pleasure of the issuer of the currency. They have zero ability to operate in defiance of the state.

This goes for banks of all sizes.

July 15, 2010 at 9:51 PM  
Blogger TGGP said...

In the previous post I linked to a Greenwald post in which he gave some examples of mediacritters who lost their jobs for going afoul of Patriotic Correctness (not sure who coined that term, but seemed to fit). I asked for people to give opposite examples so we can determine the boundaries of the "sphere of deviance". He has now given a few himself, but not many, so I'd like your guys contributions.


Reinhart:
I'm not saying they are Soros but I am saying they aren't peasants. Were aristocrats unconcerned with family life? And I would say that peasants were historically not much into productive activity, which makes some sense since there wasn't much opportunity for advancement and a higher surplus would likely result in higher taxes. Greg Clark notes the extremely high time-preference of the peasantry and attributes the lack of economic growth over centuries to that characteristic. Edward Banfield's "The Moral Basis of a Backward Society" is about more modern peasants in southern Italy. Yankees in contrast were famously productive, as even southerners (who retained more of the peasant's social system) acknowledged. Today the highest earners also work longer hours (though what qualifies as productive is a matter of much dispute).

"Class is a matter of social function, not of any quantity of wealth."
In the modern U.S people tend to define S.E.S based on education, income/wealth and "prestige" of an occupation. Steve Sailer, banking off his apt definition of "race", defined class as determining who your children are likely to marry. I doubt many Tea Partiers have "Helots" (the closest analogue to peasant) among their in-laws. I'd like to hear how others might define it, I'd settle for expected lifetime income adjusted for regional cost of living.

Mencius explained his programming project here. You may also be interested in Uberfact & Revipedia, ideas for Wikipedia-killers he wanted others to implement.


DR:
Seems unlikely. Most of them have to suck up to such people for donations. More prestigious than a successful small-to-medium sized business owner, yes I suppose. That's quite another thing from being a peasant though (academia is awash in non-tenure track faculty, their particular status hierarchy is highly salient to them).

July 15, 2010 at 10:07 PM  
Blogger TGGP said...

Michael S:
Since many of these perceptions bear little more relation to reality than the portion of the budget most think goes to foreign aid, there is little reason for me to give them much weight. EITC and unemployement insurance are also fairly popular though redistributive, perhaps because people still assume the recipients resemble them. If it's "us" then I suppose it's an example of the government "serving", if it's
them" then "subsidizing".

I am not so reassurred by opposition to the recent health bill. The administration was promising it would be "deficit neutral" and "bend the cost curve", with a big part of the saving supposed to come from (vaguely) from Medicare. Sarah Palin the pounded the table about "death panels" (which is something we actually should have), Michael Steele tried to pose the GOP as the defender of Medicare, and most of the boomer Tea Partiers I read interviewed treated their own benefits as sacrosanct. Don't cut you and don't cut me, just the fellow behind the tree.


Anonymous, Mencius' class analysis is what's in dispute (and has been, though I acknowledge his five-caste model was much better than three-caste one). Your example of foreign policy is funny because people outside the elite (particularly the underclass) don't know or care much about it (domestic policy dominates for them). Are the neoconservatives (laughably portrayed as representative of DoD), recently the driving force behind our foreign policy, Vaisyas or Optimates? There was some opposition from Brahmins (though plenty of liberal hawks supported them) and the middle class basically followed along. Mencius has argued the liberals seek to lose wars in order to undermine the popularity of the right, which makes little sense since Truman's problems in Korea just served to get Eisenhower elected and LBJ's quagmire in Vietnam gave use Nixon and a long-lasting credibility gap in foreign policy favorable to Republicans. Support for the war was not a stable characteristic of demographic segments, when LBJ was president Dems were more supportive but that switched when Nixon came in (there was a similar flip in perceptions of the economy when Obama took office). Mencius has tried putting hawkishness on a rational footing by saying that the Vaisyas wisely perceive tribute to be more expensive, but the numbers don't add up. Some wag once said that underneath all the fake tinsel of Hollywood is the real tinsel. That's similar to how politics is, basically pure bullshit which people can spend a lot of thought rationalizing, often treating the ephemeral but salient ocurrences of the present as something more transcendent.

July 15, 2010 at 10:07 PM  
Blogger Studd Beefpile said...

It's important to remember that class alliances aren't permanent. The Civil war was Brahmins and Vaisyas vs. Optimates and helots, while the new deal coalition was everyone vs. the Optimates, which broke down when it started breeding dalits.

July 15, 2010 at 11:13 PM  
Anonymous Michael S. said...

Steve Johnson - I'm not sure what the consequences of Citi's collapse would have been without TARP. What you say about it would surely have been true of Fannie and Freddie, though, since just about the entire commercial banking system would have been impaired by theirs. I'm inclined to think, based what has happened, that Citi's troubles were much less serious than those of Fannie and Freddie.

You haven't addressed the main point my earlier post was intended to make, though, which is that 'too big to fail' banks resulted from regulatory changes that altered systemic risk in a way that existing safeguards (e.g., FDIC) failed to take into account. The compartmentalized risk of the pre-Riegle/Neal commercial banking system was within the capacity of the FDIC to handle. FDIC failed to change its actuarial assumptions to account for the added risk posed by the Riegle/Neal changes. If it had, TARP would probably not have been necessary, at least for commercial banks.

Financial regulation has a history of this sort of failure. Remember the debacle involving mutually-owned savings & loan associations in the 'eighties? At that time the savings and loan industry had its own deposit insurance agency, the FSLIC. It had been set up at a time when S&Ls were restricted to residential mortgage lending, and could not offer demand deposits. "Reg Q," which restricted the interest rates S&Ls and banks could offer on time deposits, allowed S&Ls a preferential 1/4 of 1% advantage over commercial banks. The time honored maxim of S&L executives was "three, six, and two": pay 3% on deposits, charge 6% on mortgages, and take 2 months vacation in Florida every winter.

Carter-era stagflation, and the phenomenon of 'disintermediation,' whereby depositors abandoned S&L and bank CDs for more lucrative returns outside insured institutions, changed everything. Reg Q was abandoned. S&Ls were permitted to offer demand deposits and to engage in other types of lending than residential real-estate mortgages. Unlike commercial banks, they were inexperienced in these activities, and the FSLIC did not change its actuarial assumptions to allow for the change in the risks it faced due to new circumstances. Soon, S&Ls began to fail, and the FSLIC's resources were not adequate to deal with the consequences. This led to the creation of the Resolution Trust Corp., and the merging of the FSLIC with the FDIC. It's noteworthy that very few commercial banks succumbed to the problems that the S&Ls did at this time, and the FDIC never faced the same challenges. The reason was that commercial banking's underlying assumptions had not changed in the way the S&L industry's had.

It is said that the generals always fight the last war, and in parallel fashion it should be said that financial regulators always plan for the last crisis. The lengthy and diffuse Dodd-Frank bill just passed by the Senate is a perfect illustration of this pattern. It will not only not prevent the next crisis, but may well set it up to be worse than the present one.

July 16, 2010 at 2:37 PM  
Blogger TGGP said...

The slaves didn't participate much in the civil war (though most of us have seen "Glory", where the Helots were enlisted against Optimates). Caste/class is the wrong frame to view it from (the majority on both sides were small farmers). It was a regional struggle. In terms from Gelman's "Red State, Blue State, Rich State, Poor State" it resembled "Statesworld" in which the divisions within states don't matter.

Mencius emailed n/a and started an argument over there civil war & radical abolitionism. There are some other interesting posts on related matters.

July 17, 2010 at 1:05 AM  
Blogger TGGP said...

And was the New Deal coalition everyone vs Optimates? Recall that the aristocratic southern planters are supposed to represent Optimates while New England is home of the Brahmins. New England was where FDR did worst. Of course, as I just noted, focusing on caste/class can blind us to region and by looking at electoral regions I may be missing a class/caste angle. "Old money" is more conservative than "new money", though with southerners historically being an exception in supporting Dems.

July 17, 2010 at 1:16 AM  
Anonymous Michael S. said...

Southern Democrats were a mixed bag. The Southern preference for the Democratic party was of course a consequence of the war and the reconstruction, in which Northern Republicans were respectively the ideological enemy and then the victorious occupying force.

This meant that after the "redemption," all Southern politics worth the name went on within the local Democratic party - the winner of a Democratic primary was the assured winner of the subsequent general election, which was no more than a formality. While blacks were simply unrepresented, there was a vigorous conflict within the Democratic party between "Bourbons" such as Wade Hampton or LeRoy Percy, and populists like "Pitchfork" Ben Tillman or James Vardaman. This could be represented, in terms of MM's old taxonomy, as a conflict between Optimates and Vaisyas, with a non-participant Helot caste beneath both.

The representation of the Northern side in the War Between the States as being an alliance of Brahmins and Vaisyas isn't quite correct. The New York draft riots were undoubtedly an irruption of Vaisya frustration with the high-minded abolitionist project of the Brahmins.

The attitude of the Northern working man was not one of sympathy for blacks, whether slaves or free. They were viewed with suspicion, as a low-priced competition that might conceivably take bread from the mouths of free white labor. Lincoln's own state of Illinois, in the antebellum period, had strict legal prohibitions against the settlement of free blacks. And let us recall what happened to the slaves of John Randolph of Roanoke, who were manumitted by the terms of his will and settled on lands purchased for them in Ohio by their former master. The local white farmers of that free state were alarmed and incensed by this development. They burnt the ex-slaves' houses down, and drove their inhabitants from the place.

July 17, 2010 at 10:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Angelo Codevilla has an essay that may prove interesting reading as we opine about the Ruling Class:

http://spectator.org/archives/2010/07/16/americas-ruling-class-and-the/print

July 17, 2010 at 8:52 PM  
Blogger Mitchell said...

Codevilla's essay was interesting until I got to the part about how Adorno's "Authoritarian Personality" gave the Progressive elite a scientific explanation for what was wrong with nonprogressives. That rang a bell... where had I recently read the claim that the Frankfurt School, and a host of other 20th-century intellectual movements, really existed to rationalize the needs and justify the actions of an elite class... oh yes, it was in Kevin Macdonald, The Culture of Critique! But in his account, the concoctions of Adorno and his pals exist in furtherance of Jewish group evolutionary strategy, not Progressive political dominion.

July 18, 2010 at 4:41 AM  
Anonymous P.M.Lawrence said...

"Truth, even if not realized in totum, glints off every surface".

If you must resort to showing off by using Latin, you ought at least to get it right. That should have been "in toto" ("in or on the whole", using the ablative case), not "in totum" ("into or onto the whole", using the accusative case).

July 18, 2010 at 6:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"America's Ruling Class - And the Perils of Revolution"

by Angelo M. Codevilla

http://spectator.org/archives/2010/07/16/americas-ruling-class-and-the/print

July 18, 2010 at 7:52 AM  
Blogger Studd Beefpile said...

TGGP> Yeah, the optimates of the aristocratic south were basically wiped out by the war. The northeastern establishment that ran the country from the civil war through the 60s (by the 70s they were either dead or intellectually compromised) were the optimates who resisted the new deal. FDR really was a traitor to his class.

July 18, 2010 at 5:13 PM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

"However, the objective observer notes quickly that Fox News is not so much telling its audience what to think, as telling them they are allowed to think what they already think"

This is nothing new.

Wherever one looks through history, the peasants were rarely (if ever) able to construct unique political ideas on their own.

Only the elite has had - and still has - the ability to lead society into uncharted territory. The peasants simply react defensively (positively or negatively) to the elite's maneuvers. But the peasants can't go on "offense", so to speak.

The Tea Party is simply a logical defensive reaction to fiscal policies that negatively affect the day to day lives of the middle class. This is all well and good, but nobody should expect any original conservative thinking to originate from the Tea Party.

Indeed, the Tea Party is unlikely to still be a major force once BO is voted out in 2012. I suspect the Tea Party will be neatly dissolved into the general body of the Republican party once the irritant of Obamanomics is replaced with the generally less insane corporatism of the GOP in 2010 and 2012.

And since this blog is supposedly a pro-Royalist propaganda organ (despite the fact MM is constantly and infuriatingly confusing the superb, and mostly decentralized, pre-Bismarck European aristocratic governance with the overly centralized and clownish Nationalism/Fascism* of the 1930s) I will note that the yeoman classes are not always loyal foot soldiers for conservatism.

As Prince Metternich and those like him fully understood, the peasant classes are more than happy to support the progressive agenda against a conservative upper class when “progress” suits their interests.

Case in point, the wide variety of European revolutionary socialist movements of the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries were spawned by the class war tensions between the European yeoman class against a conservative European aristocratic establishment that did not want to give full property and political rights to their "peasant" class and rapidly expanding middle class.

Notice that for the past ~250 years support for revolutionary leftism was strongest and broadest in the Continental European nations (such as 1789 France and 1917 Russia) that delayed reforming their Feudalistic political, legal and economic systems and (contra Moldbug's nonsense about how modern leftism is the offspring of Anglo-Saxon Protestantism) that revolutionary socialism was weakest among the Western nations, such as the Anglo-spheric nations and Switzerland, that were earliest to accommodate their working and middle classes with extensive property, political, and legal rights.

More often than not, European elites were the great champions of order and stability, not the peasants.

July 20, 2010 at 11:07 AM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

As a final knock against the yeoman class in favor of the Royalist upper class I will make reference once more to this blog's favorite statesman and state, Adolf Hitler and 1930's Germany, and point out that both the National Socialists and the German Communists under the leadership of Ernst Thälmann were competing for the same working class voter bloc (albeit support for the NSDAP vote included a greater portion of lower middle and middle-middle class voters) whereas the conservative German upper class was relatively less enamored with the National Socialists.

* Dear Mencius,

Please consider reading up about European conservatism as it existed before the nationalism of Bismarck. You seem to be under the impression that pre-1848 European Royalism was A) Centralized and Authoritarian and B) best personified by Adolf Hitler.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

As Carlyle would have informed you, the word King is not synonymous with Duce.

Royalism and the aristocratic system was personified by Metternich and Europe was at its pinnacle when power was divided among various elite factions rather than hoarded among a single Austrian dictator.

In the future, please read up on the Hanseatic League, the Doges and Signoria of the Italian City States and the political structures that dominated the Dark Ages and Medieval Ages before writing on the topic of restoring an elite conservatism.

In sum, more Metternich, please, and keep Hitler to a reasonable minimum.

July 20, 2010 at 11:09 AM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

Also, could someone explain to me how white Catholics were the victims of some sort of Anglo-Saxon "ethnic cleansing"?

The white Catholics I know are largely prosperous, educated, and content with their lot. Additionally, they are well represented among America's elite, especially the Roberts Court.

If American white Catholics are victims of ethnic cleansing then they are victims of the most benign ethnic persecution in history.

July 20, 2010 at 11:30 AM  
Anonymous Michael S. said...

Undiscovered Jew - apropos of your point that "revolutionary leftism was strongest and broadest in the Continental European nations... that delayed reforming their feudalistic... systems": do you know in which European country the feudal system was last abolished? In Scotland, on Martinmas of 2004.

It is true that Labour could not have prevailed through the Blair and Brown ministries without its well-nigh complete control of Scottish seats in the Westminster parliament, but I don't know how much that had to do with feudalism. I suspect it has more to do with the historic identification of the Tories with Anglicanism and episcopacy, anathema to guid Scots Presbyterians.

As for the "ethnic cleansing" of American Catholics, it was more a matter of breaking up the old ethnic-Catholic urban neighborhoods, which was indeed engineered by WASP liberals in the 'sixties. See E. Michael Jones's "The Slaughter of Cities." The practical consequence of this stratagem, cloaked under the description of "urban renewal," was that concentrated Catholic populations were dispersed into suburbia and the generic white middle class. Certainly it was a benign ethnic cleansing compared to most, but it achieved the goal of removing the political control of great cities from the hands of ethnic Catholics and its delivery into those of populations more easily manipulable by the establishment left. See for example Detroit, Gary, Philadelphia, etc.

There was, within living memory, a great deal of overt anti-Catholicism in American society. It has now merged into a general anti-religious attitude characteristic of the establishment left. A good example of this is the transformation of a group originally named "Protestants and Others United for Separation of Church and State," which had as its principal spokesman the virulent anti-Catholic propagandist Paul Blanshard, into the present "American United for the Separation of Church and State," whose successor to Blanshard, the Revd. Barry Lynn, regularly appears as a guest on cable television news programs. If the Ku Klux Klan had confined itself to hating just Catholics, rather than blacks and Jews as well, it, or its successor organization, might today be considered equally respectable.

July 20, 2010 at 1:51 PM  
Anonymous Leonard said...

UJ, the "how" of the "ethnic cleansing" is reasonably clear: antidiscrimination laws, including the abolition of racist covenants (1948), and the Fair Housing Act (1968). Desegregation of the schools (1955-), followed by forced integration (1968-). Less clear is the effect of liberal policing on crime. I can't point at particular changes off the top of my head, only results: the great crime wave of the 60s/70s and onward, and the race riots of the 60s.

As for how they were victims, many were actually victimized by criminals. Mugged in reality, not by it. Most of them lost property value as desegregation swept over them -- evidently Americans value living in non-black neighborhoods with non-black schools. No abolition comes without a price, and in this case it was the urban whites who paid a significant chunk of it.

As you suggest, this is quite benign as ethnic cleansing goes. Hence my scare quotes. Nonetheless, it still fits within the definition.

Your observations about how well some Catholics are now doing in America are not simply pertinent.

July 20, 2010 at 2:47 PM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

do you know in which European country the feudal system was last abolished? In Scotland, on Martinmas of 2004.

To clarify I used the term "feudalistic" to refer broadly to political systems where the Ancien Regime traditionally enjoyed more property, political, and legal rights than the working and middle classes did.

I was not referring to feudalism proper, hence the "ic" added at the end of "feudalist".

And it is true that support for revolutionary socialism was strongest in the nations that had previously been the most resistant to give full political rights to their middle class whereas the much more egalitarian nations such as America, Switzerland, and Britain were the countries where revolutionary agitation has been weakest and general support for Capitalism have been strongest.

Your observations about how well some Catholics are now doing in America are not simply pertinent.

It is pertinent because the assimilation of white Catholics into the American mainstream helps to determine whether the policy of breaking up ethnic Catholic political machines was a good or bad policy.

July 20, 2010 at 3:27 PM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

I suspect it has more to do with the historic identification of the Tories with Anglicanism and episcopacy, anathema to guid Scots Presbyterians.

Yes, though as you noted it is an interesting coincidence.

July 20, 2010 at 4:00 PM  
Anonymous Leonard said...

"Good or bad policy". Reminds me of "Dr Evil" Tim Burke's formulation: "manipulating procedural outcomes". Anyway: who, whom?

Clearly being mugged is bad for the muggees. But it may be good for the muggers, if only their self-esteem. Similarly robbery, rape and murder. What's a few thousand such sacrifices for a good client class? And really, shouldn't the satisfaction of criminals count in the grand weighting of policy by the great and good? How many utils do you think the average rapist got from a good rape in 1970, as versus 1950?

Or maybe we should just ignore subjective utils, and concentrate on money. The thing kickstarting this whole debate is the observed destruction of Detroit. Is that good, or bad? Surely with sufficient research we could determine property values and say that Detroit's net property value in 1950 was perhaps $4 trillion, whereas now it is $1 trillion. Thus, $3 trillion have been destroyed. But this is compared against a sheer unknown: what is the dollar value of destroying a community (and thus its ethnic political machine)? It might be almost anything. So we simply cannot say objectively. Hence, we can never agree whether this was in some sense "good policy". It's a matter of judgment and taste.

Me, I look at the ruins of Detroit, and I see a great loss. And ditto when I think of the hundreds of murders, and tens of thousands of other victimizations that it took to drive out the whites. And I think of the hundreds of murders yearly, and generally the tremendous violence and squalor that the blacks are still inflicting on themselves. This is not a positive thing; it is barbarism, and a righteous society would never have permitted it. And neither would a profit-maximizing society.

And although there are things to be said on the other side, I don't see any of them as anywhere that valuable.

July 20, 2010 at 6:18 PM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

Leonard,

I'm not claiming it was either good or bad, only that whether the policy (assuming it was planned in advance - which is always a dubious assumption to make with the grossly incompetent USG) led to ethnic whites being assimilated could be used in favor of the "pro" side.

Jones seems to be in the "against" camp. Perhaps he is correct but maybe there's another side to the argument. I have never heard that the "ethnic cleansing" of ethnic Catholics was premeditated until today so I am undecided.

I'm also generally skeptical of any claims of government conspiracies. Normally, when something in USG territory gets fucked up its because USG didn't know what the hell it was doing rather than some sort of conspiracy. Aside from the military, USG is not competent enough to pull off a complex plot.

This is why I never believed the government had the bodies of ET explorers from the crash in Roswell New Mexico or that the CIA blew up the Twin Towers; I just never thought the government was smart enough to A) keep news that big secret for so long and B) competent to pull it off in the first place.

If Detroit and school segregation failed, the usual cause tends to be government stupidity rather than any scheme.

Anyway: who, whom?

"Who, whom" is only relevant in a Zero sum environment. But the environment is not always zero sum, or else altruism would have been unlikely to evolve.

July 20, 2010 at 7:01 PM  
Blogger TGGP said...

The Undiscovered Jew:
I would like to re-emphasize your point about Anglo/Protestant vs Catholic/Orthodox europe. I've been trying to make a similar point in the comments to the aforementioned race/history/evolution post. Mencius has explained away the comparative success of his postulated source countries of liberalism with some argument about the effect being less strong at the origin, which never made sense to me. However, I think you've got him wrong on Hitler vs Bismarck. He has always made clear that he considers the Nazis and other nationalist dictatorships to be a vulgar demotist phenomena, and always contrasted them to the legitimate royal authorities which preceded them (Reck-Malleczewen being an example of the old noble class). I do agree with you that he focuses too much on the aberrant and partly fictionalized period of "absolute monarchy" relative to the more decentralized medieval systems that Nick Szabo likes to talk about. I'd really like to see the Byzantinist Daniel Larison debate Szabo on the merits of the eastern empire.


Michael S:
You are right about the oft-forgotten role of the Ku Klux Klan in many "progressive" causes. To me, this complicates MM's long-lasting dichotomy of caste, since he has previously used the Klan (of the 60s) as an example of radical Vaisya resistance which is the greatest fear of the Brahmins. I haven't read Jones' book, but I'd like some evidence it was WASPs. The cities were controlled by Catholics, how did those Catholic leaders act?

"Barry Lynn"
Sounds like an Irish rather than WASP name.

July 20, 2010 at 8:43 PM  
Anonymous Michael S. said...

Feudal tenures in Scotland indeed fit the description of an ancien régime in which the landed gentry held a privileged position over the middle and lower classes. Indeed, holders of feudal superiorities, at least in theory, could collect feu duties from their vassals right up until 2004, though by then most of them had been extinguished by a one-time payment. Barons still had the right to hold baronial courts and to appoint a baron-baillie. The eminent Scots jurist Sir Thomas Innes of Learney, Lord Lyon, as recently as the mid-twentieth century, held that a baron court could still sentence trespassers and poachers to the stocks. Scottish feudalism was not a mere matter of property titles, which is one reason why the devolved Scots parliament abolished it. If it had been only a matter of real estate titles the abolition would have made no sense (and still doesn't make that much sense) because Scottish property conveyancing and the Register of Sasines were considerably more straightforward than English or American system of real estate transfers.

You'll have to read Jones to evaluate his arguments. I am not particularly interested in defending them, just in pointing them out. The history he cites in support of his claims is too extensive to repeat here. Conflict between upper-class WASP liberals and ethnic Catholics over urban government, as represented, e.g., by Louise Day Hicks in Boston or Frank Rizzo in Philadelphia, revolved around the liberals' efforts to "integrate" the old Catholic working-class neighborhoods, which of course led not to that end but to the flight of these Catholic concentrations into the suburbs, where they were diluted and dispersed into the generic white population.

I suppose it is best to characterize this political episode as being similar to a re-districting conflict - the objective in any event being to concentrate the voters the prevailing party favors into districts that can elect favored politicians by large margins, while dividing voters of the opposite party into many districts, in none of which they can muster a majority. Certainly it's impossible to portray the interests represented by Hicks or Rizzo as anything but long-term losers in American urban politics.

Barry Lynn, according to his Wikipedia entry, is a lawyer and an ordained minister of the United Church of Christ, a liberal denomination largely made up of a consolidation of former Congregational churches. The Wki article provides no clue about his parentage. Given his politics and general hostility to public manifestations of Christianity, if not for the ministerial ordination, I'd be inclined to suspect that Lynn was a deracinated Jew with an Anglicised name, originally something like Baruch Levinson.

July 20, 2010 at 9:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are right about the oft-forgotten role of the Ku Klux Klan in many "progressive" causes. To me, this complicates MM's long-lasting dichotomy of caste, since he has previously used the Klan (of the 60s) as an example of radical Vaisya resistance which is the greatest fear of the Brahmins.

I don't know how anyone would could confuse the '20's Klan-a mainstream
mass movement that controlled several states and was almost entirely directed against immigration and Catholics- and the fringe Klan of the '60's. The latter was not a single hierarchal group, but many independent and competing groups consumed entirely by opposition to the Second Reconstruction.

July 21, 2010 at 6:34 AM  
Anonymous Leonard said...

Mencius has explained away the comparative success of his postulated source countries of liberalism with some argument about the effect being less strong at the origin, which never made sense to me.

The analogy he always uses here is disease resistance, that is, the memes:genes analogy. A population where a disease evolved will tend to be resistant to it, for example Europeans resist smallpox and the black plague to some degree. A population where the same disease is novel will have no resistance and it will decimate them. For example smallpox in the New World killed 80% of the people by some estimates.

By analogy, because progressivism evolved in the Anglosphere, we've had time to build up meme-immunity against it, whereas other cultures never did. Thus on contact it would dominate them faster.

I don't really buy that myself, but it at least seems plausible to me. If it is really true, presumably we must have some cultural institutions of some sort that are anti-progressive, or at least non-progressive and which fill meme-slots otherwise taken by equality. The only institutions I can think of that fit are churches. It is certainly well remarked on that Americans are more religious than other Westerners.

July 21, 2010 at 6:45 AM  
Anonymous Leonard said...

UJ: I completely agree with you: "Never ascribe to malice that which is adequately explained by incompetence."

That said, there clearly was a "conspiracy", albeit an open one, against Catholics in America: public education. So I would be surprised to find that there was no anti-Catholic animus motivating some of the anti-segregation crusaders. But I still doubt it was their primary motivation; that must have been Equality.

I still don't see how the modern status of Catholics has anything to do with this.

July 21, 2010 at 7:07 AM  
Anonymous josh said...

I think there is something to the resistance theory. The plethora of local organizations, the relative unimportance of cousin marriage and nepotism, the emphasis on piety and disapprobation of conspicuous consumption and a million other aspects of the old Yankee and Quaker societies
(not to mention the likely natural future time orientation and intelligence of the people) helped mitigate some of the problems with egalitarianism and democracy.

It might just be a convenient philosophical out, but it definitely makes sense. After all, the thing we call leftism evolved along with our society (I don't know if it really is homegrown American, but we were at least never totally cut off from the network), it wasn't inflicted on us like rabbits in Australia.

July 21, 2010 at 7:17 AM  
Anonymous josh said...

Teddy Roosevelt would not have seen a plan to remove the hyphens of millions of Americans as malicious.

In any case, the corruption of the local (largely Catholic) political machines was an avowed target of the progressive movement from the beginning. I imagine leftists in 20th century pretty much thought of them the way they think of creationists today. They simply need to be educated. They need to learn the real meaning of democracy as Dewey had divined it. I doubt they wanted to scare them out of the cities; they probably just wanted to do some block busting, but I don't doubt there was many a rye smile at the reaction of those backwards papists to what Sandra Berhard would call "her strong black brothers".

July 21, 2010 at 7:27 AM  
Blogger Alrenous said...

Leonard,

You resist memes or ideas by knowing which parts not to take seriously, and through interactions with other supporting ideas.

To take drinking as an example, we have this idea that you shouldn't drink alone, and that if you're going to drink with dinner, just have one. It's not that you resist the idea of drinking per se, but rather that complexes around it limit the potential damage. We also have this idea of 'had one too many.' You drink cuz it's enjoyable, but you're not supposed to enjoy yourself too much.

So Anglo-Saxons and our fellow travellers know which parts of Progressivism are just things you say ("Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy") and which parts are relatively safe to actually pursue, ("Beer, if drank with moderation, softens the temper, cheers the spirit and promotes health.") Plus there are institutions that interact to support (parties) or mitigate (public drunkenness laws) Progressive outcomes. A newly exposed culture has no idea how much to take seriously, and has no support. It seems they default to taking it all completely seriously and becoming fanatics, as converts often do.

July 21, 2010 at 8:36 AM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

TGGP said,

I've been trying to make a similar point in the comments to the aforementioned race/history/evolution post. Mencius has explained away the comparative success of his postulated source countries of liberalism with some argument about the effect being less strong at the origin, which never made sense to me.

MM is trying to pin the origin of modern European leftism on the WASPs while n/a is, naturally, singling out American Jews as the culprit.

As it turns out, both MM and n/a are incorrect.

As you have pointed out repeatedly to Moldbug (to no effect), the old money WASPs were mostly conservative and correctly viewed FDR as a traitor to the bourgeois WASP tradition.

But, contra n/a, the progressive movement and New Deal were not the schemes of elite Jews in the early 20th century.

Before FDR's rise to power, elite Jewish Americans mainly consisted of German - not Russian - Jews and these elite German Jews were largely pro-WASP Republicans in an age when the GOP was a country club for elite New England WASPs.

If I recall correctly, according to John D. Sarna 8 or 9 out of 11 Jewish American congressmen in the early 20th century were Republicans. German American industrialists like the Guggenheims and Jacob Shiff were Republicans. Solomon Guggenheim was a Republican US Senator.

In contrast, Russian Jewish immigrants were and remain much more liberal than the old German American Jews for a variety of reasons.

Returning to my theme, one major reason the Russian Jews were liberal was because Imperial Russia had far more class war tensions than pre-WWI Germany did because the Russian aristocracy was far slower than Germany was to give full political and property rights to her citizens.

Additionally, the Russian Jews were heavily pro-labor union because they came from impoverished, blue-collar backgrounds whereas the German American Jews came from well to do German Industrialist backgrounds and were suspicious of labor unions because they were hotbeds of revolutionary activity across continental Europe.

And since the Democrats were and are the pro-labor union party the Russian Jews were already strongly inclined to support the Democrats the moment they landed in America.

Since the neither the WASPs nor the German Jews were liberal pre-FDR, both n/a and Moldbug are incorrect to suggest European leftism originated in America.

If anything, European leftism is what corrupted the American progressives and their descendants.

July 21, 2010 at 9:30 PM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

However, I think you've got him wrong on Hitler vs Bismarck. He has always made clear that he considers the Nazis and other nationalist dictatorships to be a vulgar demotist phenomena,

Moldbug does say that, but then he turns around and praises a futuristic high-tech authoritarianism as the proper successor to European Royalism when in fact European Royalism was a wonderfully decentralized system, so decentralized that anarcho-capitalists such as Ralph Raico and Lew Rockwell always are willing to put a good word in for the Aristocratic governance, especially the aristocratic system of the Medieval Ages.

The anarcho-capitalists have a better understanding of Monarchy than Moldbug.

The Europe of the Medieval Ages thrived on a system of elite division of power. The Pope was frequently more powerful than most European Kings and trade guilds had political pull of their own.

The Doges of the Italian Crowned Republics were mostly figureheads whereas the Signoria governing elite held the real power.

July 21, 2010 at 9:42 PM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

In any case, the corruption of the local (largely Catholic) political machines was an avowed target of the progressive movement from the beginning.

To be fair, the progressives had a history of successfully targeting political machine corruption everywhere in America. In the late 19th century, the progressives tried to stamp out the political corruption of the Robber Barons as well as the spoils system.

The Progressive's successful elimination of the corrupt spoils system was what led to the rise of the corrupt New Deal professional bureaucracy.

Catholic machine politics were not the only target of the progressives.

July 21, 2010 at 9:49 PM  
Anonymous josh said...

uj,

"Catholic machine politics were not the only target of the progressives."

duh.

Also, John T. Flynn's Roosevelt book has a good bit on the background and factionalism within the democratic party. Perhaps FDR was regarded as a class traitor by many, but he was definitely typical of a larger movement within his class. Looking at this strictly based on political parties gets a bit confusing as the early 20th century was definitely a major period of realignment.

Old money WASPs may have been on average conservative (compared to what?), but that doesn't mean the liberal WASPs didn't end up being the most influential opinion leaders. Pretty much all of the social reformers were New Englanders, weren't they. I'm currently reading Henry James "The Bostonians". Check out the wikipedia page if you haven't read it and try to tell me this book isn't about liberals as well as members of WASP society.

Wish I knew more about the Jewish question. Can anybody recommend a non-evil yet serious book?

July 22, 2010 at 6:11 AM  
Anonymous jkr said...

TUJ

"MM is trying to pin the origin of modern European leftism on the WASPs while n/a is, naturally, singling out American Jews as the culprit."

Excuse me, Mr. Victim. Naturally? You guys have so convinced yourselves of your own innocent victimhood that you actually think there's something "natural," inherent and automatic about what you call "singling out" the Jews. Like there's some mystical force at play, driving all non-Jewish people to unjust and spurious accusations and irrational hatred of you.

Second, Jewish leftism was spread throughout Europe before entering the US. It's not a phenomenon of the Jewish community in America, but of Ashkenazi Jewry generally. The radical plague was driven from central Europe to American institutions and campuses by the European Reaction to the takeover of Russia and the leftist agitation of the interwar period.

In America, leftism for the common people is straight out of Hollywood and the television studios, the mass media, a purely kosher operation, which no one sane will deny. Academic leftism is a product of the "culture of critique" that emigrated here from Europe.

Winston Churchill didn't need n/a to tell him that "This movement among the Jews is not new. From the days of Spartacus-Weishaupt to those of Karl Marx, and down to Trotsky (Russia), Bela Kun (Hungary), Rosa Luxembourg (Germany), and Emma Goldman (United States), this world-wide conspiracy for the overthrow of civilization and for the reconstitution of society on the basis of arrested development, of envious malevolence, and impossible equality, has been steadily growing.

It played . . . a definitely recognizable part in the tragedy of the French Revolution. It has been the mainspring of every subversive movement during the Nineteenth Century; and now at last this band of extraordinary personalities from the underworld of the great cities of Europe and America have gripped the Russian people by the hair of their heads and have become practically the undisputed masters of that enormous empire."

Josh... on the J question, you can't do much better than Dr. MacDonald's scholarship... Read The Culture of Critique. To be honest, just delve into the whole question with google searches... you'll find far more honest, documented information than anything "evil." It depends on what aspect of the question you want to get into. There's plenty of good info online, even if the presentation isn't always immaculately scholarly and unbiased. It's usually far more honest and less propagandistic than anything you've learned about it from school or television. Don't be scared of what someone else told you is "evil." Give all sides a fair hearing and decide for yourself.

July 22, 2010 at 12:04 PM  
Anonymous jkr said...

TUJ

"MM is trying to pin the origin of modern European leftism on the WASPs while n/a is, naturally, singling out American Jews as the culprit."

Excuse me, Mr. Victim. Naturally? You guys have so convinced yourselves of your own innocent victimhood that you actually think there's something "natural," inherent and automatic about what you call "singling out" the Jews. Like there's some mystical force at play, driving all non-Jewish people to unjust and spurious accusations and irrational hatred of you.

Second, Jewish leftism was spread throughout Europe before entering the US. It's not a phenomenon of the Jewish community in America, but of Ashkenazi Jewry generally. The radical plague was driven from central Europe to American institutions by the European Reaction to the leftist agitation of the interwar period, and the takeover of Russia.

Leftism for the masses is straight out of Hollywood and the television studios, the mass media, a purely kosher operation, which no one sane will deny. Academic leftism is a product of the "culture of critique" that emigrated here from Europe.

Winston Churchill didn't need n/a to tell him that "This movement among the Jews is not new. From the days of Spartacus-Weishaupt to those of Karl Marx, and down to Trotsky (Russia), Bela Kun (Hungary), Rosa Luxembourg (Germany), and Emma Goldman (United States), this world-wide conspiracy for the overthrow of civilization and for the reconstitution of society on the basis of arrested development, of envious malevolence, and impossible equality, has been steadily growing.

It played . . . a definitely recognizable part in the tragedy of the French Revolution. It has been the mainspring of every subversive movement during the Nineteenth Century; and now at last this band of extraordinary personalities from the underworld of the great cities of Europe and America have gripped the Russian people by the hair of their heads and have become practically the undisputed masters of that enormous empire."

Josh... on the J question, you can't do much better than Dr. MacDonald's scholarship... Read The Culture of Critique. To be honest, just delve into the whole question with google searches... you'll find far more honest, documented information than anything "evil." It depends on what aspect of the question you want to get into. There's plenty of good info online, even if the presentation isn't always immaculately scholarly and unbiased. It's usually far more honest and less propagandistic than anything you've learned about it from school or television. Don't be scared of what someone else told you is "evil." Give all sides a fair hearing and decide for yourself.

July 22, 2010 at 12:04 PM  
Anonymous jimbo said...

"RE: Palin, I think there is a good Roman analogue to her but I don't recall his name. "

You could be thinking of the Gracci brothers, but they were Patricians who championed the Plebes. The makeup of the Roman Republic made it really hard for any real leadership to bubble up from the peasantry.

July 22, 2010 at 12:23 PM  
Anonymous Michael S. said...

JKR - at least one part of the Churchill quotation is in error. "Spartacus/Weishaupt," i.e., Adam Weishaupt, founder of the much-mythologized Illuminati, was a professor at the University of Ingolstadt, a Jesuit institution. He was not a Jew, nor were any of the leading figures in the Illuminati, the significance of which in history has in any event been much overblown. Terry Melanson's recent (2009) book "The Perfectibilists" is the most complete account of the order in print. It lists all of its known members through the time of its dissolution by order of the Elector of Bavaria. Most of them were minor German princelings and their courtiers.

On the origins of left-wing politics among eastern European Jews, a useful book which seems to have escaped the unfavorable attention given to Prof. MacDonald's is "The Jewish Century" by Yuri Slezkine. It explains in detail the social position of Jews in 19th-century Russia; they were, to be sure, second-class citizens, but also definitely not at the bottom of the social heap. In their resentment of those above them, and contempt for those below them, may be found the origin of the political attitudes that remain so common amongst American Jews.

Long before there was a measurable Jewish influence on American politics, a recognizable strain can be discerned in it that was the ancestor of today's liberal establishment. It was indeed centered in New England and marked by the same middle-class dissenting Protestant antipathy for the landed aristocracy that can also be found in contemporary British society. To this, however, was added the crusade against slavery, which raised it to a moralistic boil. In reading the history of the period, it is hard not to conclude that the abolitionists, while certainly interested in freeing and "uplifting" the negro, were even more interested in punishing and "reconstructing" white Southerners, whose very manner of living offended them.

It is this same desire to punish and reconstruct elements in our society - e.g., independent businessmen and rentiers who have come by their wealth outside approved channels of political rent-seeking activity, or working-class folk who "cling to guns and religion" - that animates the establishment left today. If to this purse-lipped old New England Puritanism have been added the resentments with which immigrant Östjuden regarded the old-world gentry, and their fears of the old-world peasantry's tendency to form into Black Hundreds, now transferred to their approximate counterparts in the New World, that is certainly an added source of political strength for the left establishment. Even so, it is not its fons et origo.

July 22, 2010 at 1:55 PM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

It seems that this thread has yet again been sidetracked to a discussion of the seemingly inexhaustible topic International Jewry. I will do my best to respond to the standard anti-Ashkenazi rumors and innuendo.

Like there's some mystical force at play, driving all non-Jewish people to unjust and spurious accusations and irrational hatred of you.

I said no such thing.

Second, Jewish leftism was spread throughout Europe before entering the US.

This sentence encapsulates the main point of contention between the anti-Jewish internet faction and the Jewish or Jew controlled internet faction: Did the Jews cause liberalism or did they just jump aboard a plane that was going to take off with or without the Jews.

The anti-Jews consider the Jews to be either the primary or necessary cause of modern European liberalism while the Jew or Jew-influenced side argue that liberalism was going to advance independently of what the Jews did.

I, of course, am on the side of the Jews and therefore take the position that European leftism both predated Jewish emancipation and that there was more than enough support for revolutionary socialism among European gentiles for the revolution to have spread across Europe with or without the involvement of Jews.

First of all, the French revolution predated Jewish political emancipation so I fail to see how we can plausibly be blamed for that outrage.

Moving foward into the 19th century, there were a wide variety of revolutionary leftist movements whose founders were not Jewish. The most powerful challenger to Marxism within L'Internationale was the Anarchist political block founded by "The Anarchist Prince" Pyotr Kropotkin and Mikhail "if God existed it would be necessary to destroy Him" Bakunin, neither of whom were Jewish. In fact, one reason Marx became favored over Kropotkin and Bakunin in the Internationale was because the Anarchists were considered too extreme and unrealistic for the other member's tastes.

Other gentile leftists include French Utopian socialists such as Saint-Simon, the French Mutualist revolutionary Proudhon and Louis "He who has Iron has Bread" Blanqui.

July 22, 2010 at 3:05 PM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

Continued from above,

In addition to the many gentile Europeans who formed the majority of the leadership of the various 18th and 19th century revolutionary movements, millions of gentile European blue collar workers embraced revolutionary leftism.

For example, many of the working class voters who supported the NSDAP in 1933 Germany would have voted for the Kommunistische Partei Deutschlands led by Ernst Thälmann (a non-Jew) as a second choice had the NSDAP not been on the ballot. In fact, during the campaign, Thälmann tried to co-opt Hitler's nationalist rhetoric because Hitler was successfully eating into the KPD's blue collar base of support. Nonetheless, the KPD still managed to take a sizable fraction of the blue collar vote winning 17% of the all German voters in 1932 and 12% in 1933 in a country where only ~1% of the population was Jewish.

So revolutionary sentiment existed beyond whatever the Jews were doing.

July 22, 2010 at 3:20 PM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

In America, leftism for the common people is straight out of Hollywood

I'm so glad you mentioned Hollywood.

Hollywood is actually a lagging social indicator. In the 1950's and 1960's and while the sexual revolution was taking off, Hollywood produced almost nothing but pro-family entertainment, and yet, somehow, the gentiles still managed to engage in all forms of sexual debauchery despite Hollywood being dominated by Jews who specialized in making family friendly entertainment.

And sexual activity peaked in 1988 during a period when Hollywood was just starting to produce grossly over-sexualized cinema.

Hollywood proves my point that the Jews mostly went along with trends that were already going to take place.

July 22, 2010 at 3:28 PM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

Also, one other question for jkr,

Why should Jews be racially and collectively responsible for the actions of individual Jewish leftists when European gentiles are not held collectively responsible for the actions of European leftists?

I've never heard anyone in the racialist sphere ever say that the French are collectively responsible for the actions of Sartre and Foucault or that the Russians are collectively responsible for the Anarchist movement of Kropotkin and Bakunin (aside from Adolf Hitler who wanted to exterminate tens of millions of Russians, Ukrainians and Belarussians, and who just so happens to be considered the greatest European statesman in history by the racialist sphere)?

July 22, 2010 at 3:36 PM  
Anonymous josh said...

"I've never heard anyone in the racialist sphere ever say that the French are collectively responsible for the actions of Sartre and Foucault"

Word. But nations do get blamed for all sorts of stuff.

Micheal S.,

You would recommend the Jewish Century as the one book I should read?

I just want to try to understand intellectual history, not assign blame in order to take sides in present politics.

For the sake of full disclosure, my father is ethnically Jewish and a wonderful human being.

July 22, 2010 at 4:09 PM  
Anonymous jkr said...

Stop wasting pixels w/ your BS, TUJ. The facts are there, have been presented, people can make their own minds up. You cloud up the issue so much with your rambling posts talking about irrelevant nonsense, as if modern New Left leftism of the frankfurt variety, dominant in America, has anything to do with 1848. Stop confusing the issue.

July 22, 2010 at 4:10 PM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

Old money WASPs may have been on average conservative (compared to what?), but that doesn't mean the liberal WASPs didn't end up being the most influential opinion leaders. Pretty much all of the social reformers were New Englanders, weren't they. I'm currently reading Henry James "The Bostonians". Check out the wikipedia page if you haven't read it and try to tell me this book isn't about liberals as well as members of WASP society.

I agree that a minority of the WASP establishment were liberal progressives.

My contention (and I think TGGP's) disagreement with Moldbug centers around MM's argument that America progressivism spawned modern European leftism.

American progressivism was birthed by late 19th century reformers who attacked what they saw as moral, social and political degeneracy brought about by such phenomena as alcoholism, corporate monopolies, the spoils system, robber barons and Tammany Hall style machine politics.

Regardless of how one views progressive era reforms, the progressive movement advanced independently of European socialism.

Again, the genesis of European socialism originated from 18th and 19th century European class war tensions.

The legacy of European class war struggle is reflected in the economic divide between the Protestant and Catholic Western European states.

The Protestant nations of Northern Europe were often the most resistant to revolutionary socialism because they were earliest to grant their working and middle classes full political and property rights whereas the Catholic countries (in particular France) tended to be slower.

And because the Protestant Western European states have the longest tradition of accommodating their middle classes, the Protestant nations such as the Netherlands, Denmark, Britain, and the Scandinavians have economic policies that favor minimal business and labor regulations, weak labor unions, low business (but high income and VAT) taxes, and low trade barriers.

In contrast, the Catholic countries such as France tend to have very burdensome labor and business regulations, powerful unions (a general labor strike was what brought down DeGaulle's government), sky high corporate and personal income taxes, and high trade barriers. Not surprisingly, the Western European Protestant economies are much healthier than the Catholic European states.

Also, since Germany has both Catholic and Protestant elements, Germany's economic policies are intermediate between the Protestant North and Catholic South.

July 22, 2010 at 4:11 PM  
Anonymous josh said...

So your not a believer in the Vampire of the Continent either?

Your theory seems to imply that some sociological law is at work. I think I may find the germ model more convincing, not that I believe the germ is American in origin. The Catholic/Protestant divide may be important on this topic, but I'm not sure if its the nature or the network.

July 22, 2010 at 5:41 PM  
Anonymous Michael S. said...

Josh - Slezkine's book is a good one. It seems to me to be factual with no axe to grind.

I agree for the most part with Undiscovered Jew's aetiology of American progressivism, except that he places its birth too late. Its real beginnings were before the War Between the States, in the crisis of faith that occurred in Calvinist New England as Unitarians split from Trinitarians and some others wandered off into heterodox spirituality and utopian schemes like the Oneida Community.

The first great manifestation of the new secularized puritanism was the crusade to abolish slavery. This neatly combined in one position a claiming of moral high ground and a policy that served the rising industrial and mercantile elite of the Northeast while damaging the Southern landed elite. It is little appreciated that the South was the richest part of the antebellum U.S. The war, brought on by many and varied provocations, ended in utter triumph for the economic interests of the North, moving in one fell swoop a large number of former assets (the slaves) onto the liability side of the South's balance sheet, utterly ruining rich planters like the Lees or Wade Hampton.

Having accomplished this, the nascent progressive movement turned its restless attention to prohibitionism, female suffrage, etc. , in the true spirit of Hudibras. Like him, the progressives were of that stubborn crew that

"...prove their doctrine orthodox
By apostolick blows and knocks;
Call fire and sword and desolation,
A godly thorough reformanion,
Which always must be carried on,
And still be doing, never done;
...
A sect, whose chief devotion lies
In odd perverse antipathies;
In falling out with that or this,
And finding somewhat still amiss..."

July 22, 2010 at 5:59 PM  
Anonymous B said...

I just remembered what your blog reminds me of: http://www.johntaylorgatto.com/chapters/
John Taylor Gatto's Underground History of American Education, which I read about eight years ago. And the same villains pop up: Dewey, Lippman, New England Puritanism/Quakerism/Fabian Socialism. But from a completely different angle! Please advise.

July 22, 2010 at 10:14 PM  
Anonymous Rob said...

> I've never heard anyone in the racialist sphere ever say that the French are collectively responsible for the actions of Sartre and Foucault

I have said it. I've pointed out that France has been "contributing" primarily garbage for over 100 years. Even Celine is garbage in a way, great as he occasionally was. Leaving aside painters and Debussy, who was the last great *good* influence from France - Stendahl?

I'm not sure what you mean by "responsible." I don't want to *hold* yidn or frogs responsible for anything, in the sense of any sort of concrete sanction. I just want them to clam up with the garbage agitprop; I want peace. I respect the jews (and I am down on my knees before the old testament); I consider their conflict with my people primarily a matter of circumstance not "essence."


> [Hitler] happens to be considered the greatest European statesman in history by the racialist sphere

Bosh. He was a retard savage. Yet I will not shrink from saying that, looking back from here, I guess(?) I wish he had won, supposing he had already begun his monstrous project. That's because I love Europa from the heart... and look at her now. But of course he was a monstrosity, an epochal one. Anyway, regardless of my opinion, I don't think your assessment of white preservationist opinion is accurate.

July 22, 2010 at 11:26 PM  
Anonymous Rob said...

There is no reason for Euro-Jewish conflict now. I'm tempted to say "the devil with all the past," and hope for quite major cooperation. Our conflicts have brought us nothing but ruin and desecration.

July 22, 2010 at 11:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why should Jews be racially and collectively responsible for the actions of individual Jewish leftists when European gentiles are not held collectively responsible for the actions of European leftists?

Whitey is held racially and collectively responsible for the sins of the past - slavery, imperialism, genocide of "indigenous peoples" - that nobody alive today had anything to do with.

July 23, 2010 at 4:22 AM  
Anonymous PA said...

aside from Adolf Hitler who wanted to exterminate tens of millions of Russians, Ukrainians and Belarussians,

Hitler did not try to exterminate Ukrainians. In fact, he used them (and Latvians) as merceneries up until the end of the war. It's the Russians/Communists who tried to exterminate the Ukrainians.

Hitler's exterminationist designs were on Poles, as his immediate eastern neighbors. Though he did have a soft-spot for the Gorale, a highlander micro-nation within Poland's Tatra mountain region.

For his 1000-year Reich, he even fancied establishing ethno-parks for some of the more quaint subgroups from 'extinct' nations.

July 23, 2010 at 8:53 AM  
Anonymous jkr said...

Rob, I'm in total agreement.

July 23, 2010 at 12:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

PA, no, he's right, Hitler wanted to exterminate tens of millions of Russians, Ukrainians and Belarussians. He didn't plan to exterminate ALL of them as with the Jews -- "just" tens of millions of them west of the Urals.

http://www.amazon.com/Exploitation-Resettlement-Mass-Murder-Occupation/dp/1845451864/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1279921796&sr=1-2

Convinced before the onset of Operation "Barbarossa" in June 1941 of both the ease, with which the Red Army would be defeated and the likelihood that the Soviet Union would collapse, the Nazi regime envisaged a radical and far-reaching occupation policy which would result in the political, economic and racial reorganization of the occupied Soviet territories and bring about the deaths of 'x million people' through a conscious policy of starvation. This study traces the step-by-step development of high-level planning for the occupation policy in the Soviet territories over a twelve-month period and establishes the extent to which the various political and economic plans were compatible.

July 23, 2010 at 2:51 PM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

Since the anti-semites did such an unimpressive job of refuting my pro-Jewish propaganda I'll give only a brief reply tomorrow to their points and then concentrate more on my pro-Anglo Protestant propaganda.

For now,

So your not a believer in the Vampire of the Continent either?

Nope.

Any similarities between Continental and US leftism are primarily due to, if you will, political convergent evolution rather than common ancestry.

Hitler did not try to exterminate Ukrainians.

He absolutely was going to do so*.

Alfred Rosenberg is famous for being perplexed as to why the Slavs and a certain chunk of the Baltic peoples were slated for extermination/expulsion/enslavement when, as Rosenberg put it, "There are more blondes per capita in Ukraine than Bavaria".

So the racialist's favorite European statesman would have been responsible for the mass extermination of 10-20% of the world's European population (even not counting the Jews) had he not been defeated in war.

In light of this, perhaps the racialists should try and choose another European leader as their mascot. Afterall, it isn't as if Hitler was the only European leader in history who believed race existed (that would be close to 100% of all pre-1945 European politicians).

I'm rather sure that such white male notables as the Duke of Marlborough, Charlemagne, Lucius Verus and others would have been every bit appalled by current Western immigration policies as uncle Adolf would, but marketing has never been a WN/Paleocon strongsuit, now has it?


Btw, there is some dispute over whether the Ukrainian Holodomor was deliberately planned by the Soviets or whether it was some sort of unforeseen crop failure disaster.

Just Google Generalplan Ost:

* The final version of Generalplan Ost, essentially a grand plan for ethnic cleansing, was divided into two parts; the "Small Plan" (Kleine Planung), which covered actions which were to be taken during the war, and the "Big Plan" (Grosse Planung), which covered actions to be undertaken after the war was won, and to be implemented gradually over a period of 25 to 30 years.[5][4] Generalplan Ost envisaged differing percentages of the various conquered nations undergoing Germanisation (for example, 50% of Czechs, 35% of Ukrainians and 25% of Belarusians), extermination, expulsion and other fates, the net effect of which would be to ensure that the conquered territories would be Germanized. In ten years' time, the plan effectively called for the extermination, expulsion, Germanisation or enslavement of most or all East and West Slavs living behind the front lines in Europe. The "Small Plan" was to be put into practice as the Germans conquered the areas to the east of their pre-war borders. In this way the plan for Poland was drawn up at the end of November 1939 and is probably responsible for much of the WWII expulsion of Poles by Germany. After the war, under the "Big Plan", Generalplan Ost foresaw the deportation of 45 million non-Germanizable people from Eastern Europe, of whom 31 million were "racially undesirable" Jews (100% of the pre-war population), Poles (85%), Belorussians (75%) and Ukrainians (64%), to West Siberia,[2] and about 14 millions were to remain, but were to be treated as slaves.[4] In their place, up to 8-10 million Germans would be settled in an extended "living space" (Lebensraum). Because the number of Germans appeared to be insufficient to populate the vast territories of Eastern Europe, the peoples judged to lie racially between the Germans and the Russians (Mittelschicht), namely, Latvians, Estonians, and even Czechs, were also supposed to be resettled there.[6]

July 23, 2010 at 11:04 PM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

Link

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Generalplan_Ost

July 23, 2010 at 11:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

TUJ joins the distinguished ranks of Holodomor Denialists.Unfortunately, you can say anything you want about non-Jewish whites with East Euro ancestry because they were "ethnically cleansed" (i.e. moved out out to the suburbs and assimilated into some amorphous mass of Last Man consumers) and would recoil at the thought of getting on the internet and defending their ancestors' reputations using a handle suggestive of Borat like "The Undiscovered Ukrainian".


For the 20th Century at least, all famines were ultimately the result of political decisions. Note, for example, that India'a regular famines came to an end after the Raj departed.

July 24, 2010 at 4:20 AM  
Anonymous Michael S. said...

Anon., it's a canard that Indian famines ceased with the end of the Raj. The Wikipedia article on "Famine in India" states:

"The last famines were the Bihar starvation in December 1966 and a drought in Maharashtra in 1970-1973."

Famines took place well before the Raj, too. The same article notes that there were 14 famines in India between the 11th and 17th century. The attempt to blame Indian famine on British rule is refuted by the history of famine before and since it.

The Ukrainian famine under Stalin and the Ethiopian famine after the communist takeover there were, on the other hand, engineered catastrophes.

July 24, 2010 at 6:29 PM  
Anonymous Rob said...

You students of Lebensraum / Plan Ost... what's the two-sentence summary of how well these plans were known during the war, in Germany and beyond?

July 24, 2010 at 8:45 PM  
Blogger gamut said...

Mitchell, to your earlier question about the auto industry and decline: In the case of Detroit the extremely protracted failure of the auto industry is more a result rather than a cause of the decline of the city. Remember that the big three have been saved from bankruptcy quite a few times already. Using MM's terminology -- the gentlemen, over time, encouraged the growth of a small number of large employers of the varlets -- more like agents of the state and channels for charity. The provision of subsidy removed the need for solid business plans, which made these companies existence wholly dependent on continued support form the USG, and placed competitors are severe disadvantage (financially) -- their collapse has been imminent for decades, and each time they come close to failure, buyout and restructuring, they are saved yet-gain. Anyway, eventually the city became so unpleasant that even the gentlemen started to move out -- they live in A^2 now, and other wealthy satellite cities. Now we have this strange situation where the varlets are required to live and work in the city core to receive their subsidy, and the gentlemen can happily live elsewhere, performing groundbreaking government-funded multimillion-dollar research on the relationship between their subsidies and the welfare of their city-bound subjects.

The newest innovation in urban planning, here in Toronto, tries to avoid this endpoint by zoning parts of the city as 'mixed-income' and attempting to sell parcels of land of airspace (lofts) in direct contact with subsidised government property. The result, as expected, are mostly empty buildings whose entry price has fallen from 500k for a 1,000 sq ft loft to somewhere south of 150k, with still no takers. Apparently neither peasants nor even gentlemen enjoy such proximity to their dependents. No avoiding turning out like Detroit, it seems.

Recently, immigrant peasants don't even move into the city anymore, but head right for the suburbs, outside of the territorial boundary of this quasi city state.

July 25, 2010 at 8:34 AM  
Blogger Zimri said...

The makeup of the Roman Republic made it really hard for any real leadership to bubble up from the peasantry.

The secession of the plebes in the early Republic, which forced the Senate to create the office of Tribune, was one such successful "peasant" revolt. Another successful revolt was the Social War in the late Republic.

July 25, 2010 at 3:06 PM  
Blogger Zimri said...

[adolf] didn't plan to exterminate ALL of them as with the Jews -- "just" tens of millions of them west of the Urals.

Yeah; adolf wanted to get rid of the "excess" population, leaving just enough to serve his Aryan elite as serfs. Think William the Bastard and the Harrowing of the North, 1070 AD or so... or, think the Holodomor and the kulak witch-hunts not even a decade prior.

Stalin had put an end to the Holodomor in 1937 or so. By 1941 I expect there would have been a class of ethnic-Russian bureaucrats more or less in charge of agriculture in Ukraine.

Adolf's genocide in the Ukraine would have been less bloody than the Holodomor... but that's only because there were fewer kulaks left to kill.

July 25, 2010 at 3:21 PM  
Anonymous skeptic said...

Can anyone cite any conclusive evidence that "adolf" intended to "exterminate all jews"?

at what point did "adolf" make this decision... how was it relayed, implemented... how successful was it?

details, details, details.

as some of you may know, there's a little debate going on about this stuff... with basically honest scholars on both sides.

don't bother to answer unless citing concrete, conclusive evidence in favor of one side or the other... or else you're just confirming my point. please try to avoid logical fallacies such as the appealing to authority or consensus fallacy. that would just be gay.

thanks!

July 25, 2010 at 6:26 PM  
Anonymous redfallo said...

Kill all Jews.

July 26, 2010 at 4:46 PM  
Blogger The Mathmos said...

I'm at the farthest left that will still find the time to post here, and I can say that, absent some profound philosophical, political and factual differences between us, I'm quite happy with the anti-establishment tone of this post (and the few comments I've read).

I can only hope that the people around here will maintain a similar level of class-awareness and elite-distrust when the other ruling aristocrat fraction (the GOP) eventually takes over.

July 26, 2010 at 9:05 PM  

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