Friday, February 8, 2013 60 Comments

Charles Stross discovers the Cathedral

Poor Charles Stross.  Not that he's the first revolutionary to discover that the revolution bus doesn't stop where the sign said it was supposed to stop.  And not that he'll be the last.  But still - can't we be a little sad?  Just a little?

(At least if 20th-century Britain is your milieu, the masterpiece of revolutionary disenchantment is Malcolm Muggeridge's autobiography.  Suffice it to say that Muggeridge's wife was the niece of Sidney and Beatrice Webb - suffice it also to say that he was a Guardian correspondent in Moscow in the '30s.  A lovely paper, the old Grauniad, I read it every day.  No, really.)

Reader, I knew Charlie, once.  A long, long time ago in a galaxy long since destroyed, he was an promising young SF writer and I was a promising young CS grad student, and we were both regulars on the same Usenet newsgroup, alt.peeves.  I met him once when he visited Berkeley.  I even read his unpublished novel - which I thought was good, but not great.

Indeed this age has quite the glut of good writers.  Great ones?  Greatness is not a quality of our time. A great writer, having read his Orwell, would never let himself get away with abusing the English word dictatorship to mean "government I don't like."  Do we live in a beige dictatorship?  Really?  Who, then, is our beige dictator?  Valerie Jarrett?

Of course the word Charlie's looking for is oligarchy, and he even finds it further down the page.  He quotes Robert Michels, for God's sake!  Comrade!  I have to hope you're just dropping Wiki links, comrade.  You can't have actually read this book.  It's on the restricted list - dangerous even for a loyal Party man in good standing.   Weren't you assigned Hardt and Negri?  Have you finished?

I mean, if you're reading Michels, what will you get into next?  OstrogorskiMosca and ParetoMaineFroude and Carlyle?  Marijuana leads to heroin, you know.  A couple more clicks and suddenly, you discover that you've spent the whole day marinating your delicate cortex in R.L. Dabney.  Definitely no way to crank out the next cyberpunk space-opera blockbuster.

And Comrade Stross, I'd endeavour not to bring the Party into disrespect with palpable absurdities.  To wit:
Something has gone wrong with our political processes, on a global scale. But what? It's obviously subtle — we haven't been on the receiving end of a bunch of jack-booted fascists or their communist equivalents organizing putsches.
If you want to point out that progressive democracies in the West have developed some of the same bureaucratic pathologies as the Eastern peoples' democracies, that's one thing.  But don't you think it's a little difficult to pretend that Western progressive democracy is equidistant from Hitler and Stalin?  From Comrade Stalin - leader of progressive mankind?  Really?

Your reader may not know much about 20th-century history - hardly anyone does, really.  But you can't keep him from knowing that his government didn't collaborate with Hitler to smash Stalin.  (I have no joke - I just like saying, "Stalin was feeling extremely gay.")

No, comrade.  It's much better to come right out and lead the audience in a rousing rendition of that great New Laborite anthem, The Red Flag.  Don't try to pretend the revolution didn't happen.  That only distracts us from the critical task of figuring out who betrayed it.  Was it Ralph Miliband's kids?  But they seemed so promising!

This is how all great magicians work.  They keep you looking for something "obviously subtle," while they saw the lady in half right in front of your face.  What happened?  Um, the revolution happened.  Slowly, it's true.

A big favorite of the early 20C Laborites, English Dissenters to the marrow, was Blake's great hymn (doesn't Billy Bragg do a version?):
I will not cease from Mental Fight,
Nor shall my Sword sleep in my hand:
Till we have built Jerusalem,
In England's green and pleasant Land.
How's that New Jerusalem workin' out for ya?  Actually, pretty well:
Meanwhile, it may with little fear of contradiction be asserted that there never was, in any nation of which we have a history, a time in which life and property were so secure as they are at present in England. The sense of security is almost everywhere diffused, in town and country alike, and it is in marked contrast to the sense of insecurity which prevailed even at the beginning of the present century.

There are, of course, in most great cities, some quarters of evil repute in which assault and robbery are now and again committed. There is perhaps to be found a lingering and flickering tradition of the old sanctuaries and similar resorts. But any man of average stature and strength may wander about on foot and alone, at any hour of the day or the night, through the greatest of all cities and its suburbs, along the high roads, and through unfrequented country lanes, and never have so much as the thought of danger thrust upon him, unless he goes out of his way to court it.
Oh, wait.  My mistake.  That's not the New Jerusalem, it's the old one - London in 1876.  Victorians!  Anglicans!  Morons!  What did they know from Mental Fight?  Exterminate the brutes!  Whereas, after a century and a half of Progress:
A teenager who pleaded for his life as a gang armed with knives and swords chased and fatally stabbed him in the street was named yesterday as Hani Hicham Abou El-Kheir.

Witnesses described how the 16-year-old tripped while he was being pursued by a group of up to 15 youths close to home on a housing estate in well-heeled Pimlico and shouted “don’t do it” as he was surrounded. His mother rushed to the scene and had to be held back from a police cordon as medics battled in vain to save his life.

Police said last night they were keeping an open mind about the motive for the attack. A youth worker said there had been a concerted attempt by drug dealers to move into the area in recent months but although Hani’s name had been mentioned “on the periphery” of a gang, he had not been considered a significant or known member.

The attack shortly before 7pm on Sunday night took place close to Pimlico Tube station on a street flanked by multi-million pound houses and an estate of local authority tower blocks where Hani is believed to have lived with his mother.

One onlooker said that his killers ran away “as if nothing had happened” after having “jumped on him like a pack of dogs”. He was heard to plead “don’t do it” as the gang, many of whom witnesses said were wearing hoodies and bandanas across their faces, repeatedly stabbed him.
I guess someone's sword isn't sleeping in his hand.  Swords!  I love swords.  Always and everywhere, science fiction needs more swords.  Meanwhile, the great SF writer himself recently spent a weekend in our own vibrant metropolis of "warm, sunny Detroit," where I'm sure he took the time to "wander about on foot and alone."  Nah.  Just kidding.  I'm sure he took an armored vehicle straight from the airport to the hotel.  And back again.  Ah, the 21st century.

Am I digressing?  No, I'm not digressing.  Crime and government are the same thing - power imposed by force.  Always and everywhere, crime is nano-tyranny.  In the last minute of Hani Hicham Abou El-Kheir's life, there was only one government that mattered - a tiny circle of sovereignty, containing  oppressed (Mr. El-Kheir) and oppressor (15 "youths" wielding swords).  This government, smaller than the Queen's but no less real, condemned Mr. El-Kheir to death, no doubt for some real or imagined offence, enforced the penalty, and then dispersed.  Hopefully the Queen's grim stormtroopers will at some point capture the rebel regime, perhaps issuing the leader a stern Asbo.

One great Englishman, King Ine of Wessex, wrote eloquently of this phenomenon, nano-government.  By the laws of King Ine, if there are up to 7 sword-wielding "youths," they are thieves; from 7 to 35, bandits; and if over 35, an army.  This is objective social science at its finest.

If the young Englishmen of Pimlico care to be taken seriously, then, they'd best recruit at least 20 more good English youths.  With swords.  But how hard is that?  Can't you print a sword, or 20, with a Makerbot?  Moreover, though there are only 20 million Englishmen and thus potential swordsmen, it's the 21st century.  Change has come.  And anyone with two legs who isn't a bird is an Englishman.  At least, if Ralph Miliband's kids have issued him the proper documents.  And paper, you'll note, is even easier to print than a sword.

This sort of thing doesn't bother a good Party man, of course.  Democracy, as we know, is messy.  (Look at the Arab Spring!  Glorious!  But messy!)  And kids are always up to some kind of shenanigans.  No, England's real tragedy is that government services are being outsourced.

Indeed, it's quite possible that whoever had to clean Mr. Al-Kheir's four gallons off the Pimlico pavement was, in fact, a private contractor.  (Probably an Englishman of, well, Polish descent.  Why work, when you can import slaves?)  How low can England sink?  What would Lord Passfield say?

Okay.  Now I am digressing.  This is just ridicule.  Indeed, England's real tragedy is that England has become, for possibly the first time since Gildas was a little boy, ridiculous.  This precious stone, set in the silver sea... sceptered it remains; but the scepter is, unmistakably, Nerf; and the hand that once so bravely wielded it, now, appears to be, well, stroking....

But I do have a serious answer to Charlie's question.  Because, after all, we agree.  A "beige oligarchy" - definitely not a "brown paper bag" reference - is exactly what we have.  It's exactly what we'll always have, until some other Aristotelian form replaces it.  (A good comrade can read Aristotle, but not apply him.)  Per Aristotle, there are three forms of government - by the many, by the few, by the one; democracy, oligarchy, monarchy.  In England and elsewhere, how do we escape the beige oligarchy and get back to democracy?

Ha!  How does a cow fly to the moon?  It doesn't.  We can't.

I realize that this is very difficult to accept for people brought up to see democracy not only as what ought to be, but also as what is.  Here at UR, we believe that not only shouldn't it be, but it isn't.  Moreover, it can't be.

Always and everywhere, the strong rule the weak.  15 youths with swords rule 1 youth with no sword.  If Mr. Al-Kheir had wanted to "wander, on foot and alone," through the wilds of central London, he had a simple way to do so.  He should have brought his sword and 14 friends.  He felt that he had a natural right to "wander, on foot and alone," and the Queen's law supported him in this opinion.  But it was not the Queen who ruled this patch of Pimlico.  Had Mr. Al-Kheir been more attentive to what is, not what ought to be, he might be sitting at home reading a Charles Stross novel.

The constitution of a country is a mockery and a sham unless it reflects the real structure and possession of power in the country.  Suppose "Martian invaders" invade America and take over Washington.  All power is held by the Martian invaders, with their death-rays.  But they don't bother to cancel the Constitution - why should they?  We therefore see a divergence of power between the real authorities, the Martian invaders, and the nominal authorities, the American people.  In this case, is America still a democracy?  Nominally, yes.  Really, no.

While there are no Martian invaders, it is relatively straightforward for us to distinguish between two kinds of democracy: one kind, in which power genuinely flows upward from what people want, and another kind, in which power flows downward from the beige oligarchy / Martian invaders, is converted into what they're supposed to think, and regurgitated dutifully at the polls.

Charlie, do you really want a political system in which power genuinely flows upward from what most people want?  I have two words for you.  The first is the name of a Biblical prophet.  The second is "Powell."

In postwar Europe, there is a codeword for a political persuasion in which power flows upward.  The codeword is "populist."  Needless to say, no more vile slur can pass the lips of a good Party man.  A "beige dictatorship?"  Please, man.  Don't complain about the dish you ordered.

But I don't care to frighten you with bugbears.  The reality of the 20th century is that populists lose.  Populists lose because populism is democracy, and democracy is weak.  For instance, democracy as a form of government originated in mob violence.  It was a mob that chased Charles I out of London.  Then, democracy was strong and monarchy was weak, and as always the strong ruled the weak.

There is still mob violence in London, of course, but it is not organized and therefore cannot exercise power - and in any case, it is underclass violence, and therefore aligned with the Party.  There is certainly no populist violence in London, and there hasn't been any for 50 years.  The beige oligarchy has zero tolerance for that.   And even the idiotic "race riots" of the '50s were a pathetic shadow of the Elizabethan mob, which had no trouble at all in ripping the throats out of every Flemish merchant in the City if they thought they were being gouged on the wool price.

So we have an interesting situation, in which a political force, once physically powerful, became represented in formal authority as a way to recognize and regularize its capacity for violence.  But it no longer has that capacity for violence.  Nor does it have any capacity to govern - not that it ever had any, really.  And without the capacity to govern, it also lacks the capacity to retain its position of genuine authority, either by political craft or brute force.

Therefore, we can expect exactly the result that we observe - retention of symbolic authority, loss of actual authority.  Of course, for any such loss, there must be a gainer.  Hence the beige oligarchy.

Democracy is a historically rare and transient phenomenon, of course, but retention of symbolic power when real power has been lost is a very common trope.  It's just a trope that usually happens not to democracies, but to monarchs - who are pwned usually by bureaucratic oligarchies, though sometimes by other monarchs (consider the Merovingian kings).

When I think of the Western democratic electorate, as a force which claims the capacity and reality of ruling, yet has been utterly used by the utterly anti-democratic beige oligarchy, I find it very easy to translate it into the language of monarchy.  We all hate monarchy, of course - the Party has taught us well!  But somehow, we still know its language.

Imagine you're the King of France.  You have the hereditary right to rule France, just as Englishmen have the hereditary right to rule England.  Why?  Because.  It's the constitution.  So, sovereignty is yours, unlimited and absolute sovereignty, and everyone has to do what you say.

Except - there's just one problem.  The problem is: you're seven years old.

There's simply no way that France will be ruled by a seven-year-old.  But sovereignty is conserved.  Always and everywhere, France is ruled by someone.  At best, it might be ruled by someone who claims he's taking orders from a seven-year-old.  It might even be the case that the seven-year-old, if bright, actually writes down the order, which the wise minister has suggested to him.  But there is no possible way in which, in reality, France is ruled by a seven-year-old.

There's a great passage in Ray Huang's classic, 1587: A Year of No Significance:
When Wan-li was in his early teens, he merely followed Big Companion Feng's instructions, affixing his own rescripts in vermilion ink on certain papers to make official the drafts in black submitted by Tutor Chang's office.  The documents that he personally worked on involved simple replies such as Approved and Acknowledged.  When the rescripts involved complicated phraseology, the work was, as a rule, delegated to Feng Pao's staff of assistants.  These proceedings were completely in agreement with the dynasty's established practice.  An instruction written in red in the emperor's presence carried the authority of the throne.  On the other hand, any unauthorized use of the vermilion brush constituted falsification of imperial orders, a crime subject to the mandatory death penalty.

It must have been some time before the young emperor grasped the mechanics of the institutional process, of which he himself was the central figure.  There is no evidence, for instance, that, when in those early days he carried out his official duty in a way not fundamentally different from calligraphy lessons, he fully understood the import of his own rescript Acknowledged, which really meant that the suggestion or request embodied in the paper had been politely rejected, and that, considering the noncontroversial nature of the proposal, no action would be taken against the writer of the paper or others mentioned therein.

One duty Wan-li could not delegate had to do with his power of appointment.  The problem was solved in this way: whenever there was a vacancy in a high office, Tutor Chang and the ministers always submitted more than one candidate for the emperor's selection.  When he circled one person's name with his vermilion brush, that person was appointed, and the emperor had ostensibly made a decision of his own.  However, he had early been indoctrinated to believe that the person whose name topped the list was best qualified.
Could any more penetrating portrait of an American election be penned?  "Not fundamentally different from calligraphy lessons."

There is one difference between democratic electorates and child monarchs.  Child monarchs grow up.  Unless they are Henry VI, they become men.  They acquire virtue, capacity, and strength.  And at that point, the day of "Big Companion Feng" is over.  Here's (per Hume) how one of the greatest of English kings dealt with his own "Big Companion Feng":
It was impossible that these abuses could long escape the observation of a prince endowed with so much spirit and judgment as young Edward, who, being now in his eighteenth year, and feeling himself capable of governing, repined at being held in fetters by this insolent minister. But so much was he surrounded by the emissaries of Mortimer, that it behooved him to conduct the project for subverting him with the same secrecy and precaution as if he had been forming a conspiracy against his sovereign. 
He communicated his intentions to Lord Mountacute, who engaged the Lords Molins and Clifford, Sir John Nevil of Hornby, Sir Edward Bohun, Ufford, and others, to enter into their views; and the Castle of Nottingham was chosen for the scene of the enterprise. The queen dowager and Mortimer lodged in that fortress: the king also was admitted, though with a few only of his attendants: and as the castle was strictly guarded, the gates locked every evening, and the keys carried to the queen, it became necessary to communicate the design to Sir William Eland, the governor, who zealously took part in it.

By his direction, the king's associates were admitted through a subterraneous passage, which had formerly been contrived for a secret outlet from the castle, but was now buried in rubbish; and Mortimer, without having it in his power to make resistance, was suddenly seized in an apartment adjoining to the queen's. A parliament was immediately summoned for his condemnation.
He was accused before that assembly of having usurped regal power from the council of regency appointed by parliament; of having procured the death of the late king; of having deceived the earl of Kent into a conspiracy to restore that prince; of having solicited and obtained exorbitant grants of the royal demesnes; of having dissipated the public treasure; of secreting twenty thousand marks of the money paid by the king of Scotland; and of other crimes and misdemeanors. The parliament condemned him from the supposed notoriety of the facts, without trial, or hearing his answer, or examining a witness; and he was hanged on a gibbet at the Elmes, in the neighborhood of London. 
Simple, dramatic, final, and effective.  Of course, the Earl of March had only one neck.  How do you hang a beige oligarchy?  There's an easy answer, which is "more gibbets."

But this is the wrong answer, really.  There are two right answers.  One is that English democracy is no more capable of hanging, deposing, or even slightly troubling its beige oligarchy, than a cow of flying to the moon.  That's the bad news.  The good news is: Aristotle didn't say there were only two forms of government.  He said there were three.

There is only one thing that can replace a "beige dictatorship" - a non-beige dictatorship.  That is, monarchy in the dictionary sense of the word - concentration of official authority in one man, or at least one office.  This man, or office, can hang anyone (or someone has authority to overrule him, which means the monarchy is no monarchy at all); and doesn't need to hang anyone.

Why not?  Because the former bureaucratic oligarchs will crawl up to his feet and lick them, begging to retain their jobs.   Most will be disappointed, but so what?

Not only is none of them the Earl of March, but none of these Party men are desperate, bomb-throwing revolutionaries, however much they like to believe it.  They are silky-soft bureaucrats.  It's 2013, not 1913, and all a Party man knows how to do is cozen for power.  If he can no longer find appropriate bureaucratic employment, he can always drive a cab.  Maybe someone will find some testicles and throw a bomb, and in this case he does unfortunately need to be hanged - pour encourager les autres.  I assume the ol' sceptered isle still has a gallows or two in some back room.

What is England's problem?  What is the West's problem?  In my jaundiced, reactionary mind, the entire problem can be summed up in two words - chronic kinglessness.  The old machine is missing a part.  In fact, it's a testament to the machine's quality that it functioned so long, and so well, without that part.

I don't even need a reactionary to be king.  Let's just find someone talented with a lot more fans than me - such as, I don't know, Charlie Stross.  Is he enlightened?  Of course he's not enlightened, though this Michels thing is quite promising.  It doesn't matter.  The job will enlighten him - or anybody with the capacity to do it.

60 Comments:

Anonymous Euro2cent said...

Comrade, one of these days you're going to figure out the problem started with that Martin Luther character.

You know what you have to do.

February 8, 2013 at 1:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How about Paul Allen and Vulcan Real Estate? Perhaps if Allen lives long enough to become a mutant cyborg, he will then be powerful enough and vicious enough to simultaneously pound the kulaks, stem the red tide and depose the oligarchs.

One can hope. For now we'll just have to settle for South Lake Union, Seattle.

February 8, 2013 at 2:26 PM  
Blogger sconzey said...

But England already has a Queen, albeit not a monarch, and she and her heirs and descendants are considerably more popular than Charles Stross. What do you think of the chances of a second Restoration ?

February 8, 2013 at 3:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Who, then, is our beige dictator? Valerie Jarrett?


Well, not to put too fine a point on it, but yes.

February 8, 2013 at 4:27 PM  
Blogger Zimri said...

Stross acknowledges your post at comment #115.

February 8, 2013 at 4:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H06kpn2C3Fk

February 8, 2013 at 5:45 PM  
Anonymous Ernst Junger said...

“Seen politically, systems follow one another, each consuming the previous one. They live on ever-bequeathed and ever-disappointed hope, which never entirely fades. Its spark is all that survives, as it eats its way along the blasting fuse. For this spark, history is merely an occasion, never a goal.”
― Ernst Jünger, Eumeswil

February 8, 2013 at 9:04 PM  
Anonymous src said...

I wish to God there was more I could offer you than my sympathy.

Folks like us can work (and I do *try* to work). I try to be of use. It isn't enough, it'll never be enough, but maybe there will come a day when it'll turn out that things are better for our efforts? I *am* fighting the Cathedral, by trying to replicate some of its institutions independently and with better performance. I am trying my damndest to serve.

I don't think our kind of people can rule, though. Maybe it's possible. I have forced myself to learn many a skill by sheer pigheadedness...but I don't know if, at some point, biology will simply refuse to cooperate. It takes a stronger constitution to handle power and conflict. And it takes a better head for strategy, and sounder morals, and...

I just wish there were more to offer.

February 8, 2013 at 9:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Funny. I unsubscribed from Stross's blog a few months back, as the other writers there are wack-jobs of the Tumblr Social Justice variety.

February 8, 2013 at 11:02 PM  
Anonymous nydwracu said...

"Funny. I unsubscribed from Stross's blog a few months back, as the other writers there are wack-jobs of the Tumblr Social Justice variety."

Oh dear. How did social justice spread so fast? Am I just too young to remember that all that in fact was around in, say, 1989--that science fiction authors and standup comics and magazine writers and high school teachers and high school students all existed in a prestige-structure with the glorification of martyrdom at the hands of a mythical linear and universal history of oppression--or was it as much of a brush fire as it looks like to me? And if the latter, how the hell did that happen?!

February 9, 2013 at 2:12 AM  
Blogger Darth Imperius said...

Charles Stross is the most vile kind of Manichean leftist fundamentalist filth spreading lies and propaganda in the guise of fiction. His kind can never be reasoned with or shamed; they can only be defeated in battle.

As for the people of this blog, what you all need to do is stop the borderline trolling and over-intellectualizing and start training for the inevitable conflicts. Come to Sith Academy and join our holy war for Sithism and the great Endarkenment. Right now our group consists mostly of iron-willed thugs and occultists, but we could use a few intellectuals to attack the academics and the Strossians and begin to really militate against the beigeist regimes which our kind, far more than any leftist lemming like Stross could ever understand, despise with every fiber of our being.

February 9, 2013 at 3:04 AM  
Anonymous Federico said...

But don't you think it's a little difficult to pretend that Western progressive democracy is equidistant from Hitler and Stalin? From Comrade Stalin - leader of progressive mankind? Really?

The difference between communism and progressivism ("Universalism") is that the former is economic, the latter social.

There is a measure of over-regulation due to bureaucratic incompetence, but the free market is well and good to supply us with food, clothes, toys etc. Economic freedom is only denied ideologically when it conflicts with the need for everyone to be part of a single human community, in which no-one is denied participation.

It is important for health, education and housing to be socialised, because people without toys can be part of the community, but the ill, illiterate and homeless cannot. Rights to racial and sexual exclusion from private property and organisations are unacceptable, because one can make toys without having to dismiss black people, Muslims and women from the human communion. The only motive to do so is inhuman spite—says progressivism. Marriage has to be constituted for maximum levelling of men, women and homosexuals. And private enterprise mustn't impinge (at all!) on the environment, because that is an act of power over something essential to the entire human community—arbitrary will, unlike the petty decisions of a toymaker. (In more extreme versions, it may also be an act of exclusion towards non-human members of the communion.)

The economic calculation problem from communism is suffered within progressivism. We lack Hayekian distributed information about social matters (not food, ovens, cars...), hence the lack of efficiency and coordination in child-rearing, family cohesion, sexual morality, treatment of the old, etc.

Economic crises are caused (or exacerbated) by the need to finance this central management of society by printing money. Central banking, and the concomitant laws against private minting &c., isn't due to ideological communism, although in effect it is purely economic etatism.

There is only one thing that can replace a "beige dictatorship" - a non-beige dictatorship.

A powerful individual may be able to decide matters of one kind, but not another. A referee can stop a football match, but lacks further authority over the players. This is because the players collectively have the idea that they should respect his right to stop the match, but not much else. Power in human societies cannot, even in an absolute dictatorship, be understood by studying one person's mind. The content of other brains counts for almost everything.

There are serious problems with the content of Western citizens' minds. It is mistaken to believe that a constitution is a piece of paper (granted by the state!), rather than a Schelling point, which can be publicised in a document, and which is supposed to coordinate the aggression (rioting, assassination, disobedience, reform movements &c.) of innumerable citizens. The libertarian "non-aggression principle" is also a bad idea because aggression, or at least a credible threat, is essential to constitutionalism.

But in theory—if good ideas are put into practice—there is no need for any kind of dictatorship, or locus of absolute, indivisible, and inalienable political authority. Non-beige dictatorship sounds alarmingly similar to brown dictatorship.

February 9, 2013 at 5:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Come to Sith Academy and join our holy war for Sithism and the great Endarkenment.

LMAO.

Awhile back I was thinking about how could I go about trolling the fuck out of lesswrong. One idea was to create a shadowy organisation dedicated to increasing existential risk. Like making more videos insulting Allah.

Your site though, LOL. You are actually taking this pretty seriously. A few months back I was reading about this militant satanic group that has been targeted by the FBI. You aren't part of that group are you?

ay yeah here we are: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Order_of_Nine_Angles

is this you?

Moldbug's comments section attracts some fucking hilarious people. I AM ENTERTAINED.

February 9, 2013 at 5:57 AM  
Anonymous Federico said...

One idea was to create a shadowy organisation dedicated to increasing existential risk.

PKD already did it.

Another way to troll the Bayesians would be to resurrect Roko's basilisk. You could found a movement that surreptitiously exposes people to it, and thereby creates an army of reluctant x-risk reducers. This is a powerful bait, because you could claim the moral (utilitarian) high ground.

But why not troll a more deserving community, e.g. white nationalists? If you set up a website dedicated to making white women breed with oppressed races, such as Asian men, replete with sob stories about Chinese sons who can't find a white girlfriend, you could cause apoplexy.

I have been tempted to troll majorityrights.com by installing myself as a guest author. Nowadays they have abandoned "Salterism" in favour of increasingly abstruse Heideggerian ontology, which is ripe for a Sokal hoax. Especially if what you say is 90% applause lights, and 10% out of left-field.

And what about progressives? You could troll them by founding a campaign for sexual equality: the right of all men to have sex with the most attractive women. The omega revolution, in which most exquisite pleasure is no longer confined to the few. Again, you can bemuse them by taking the moral high ground. This would embarrass "men's rights activists" at the same time.

February 9, 2013 at 7:09 AM  
Blogger Darth Imperius said...

Yes ONA is the mother of a lot of potent memes that will define the Age of Endarkenment. If you read this document you will see that I pay tribute to the sinister genius of ONA founder Anton Long.

As for an anti-LessWrong site, I actually created something like that at omegaleague.com, though most of it has been taken down and now it's just a shell social network. When it was up in its full glory it provoked Michael Annisimov to contact me; he told me in a fit of child-like rage that "it's not fair!" that I would launch a site spoofing LW when they were about to go mainstream. It was quite a riot.

As for Sith Academy, yes I am quite serious about it, because I do believe that only dark theocracy and fascism have enough potency to survive the chaotic 21st century. Democracy, liberalism, Christianity and other light side ideologies are simply too weak and delusional; what is needed, and what I am bringing to this planet, is a religion of power worship and manifested dark side energy in the tradition of Momammed and Hitler. We are going to burn down the current order and build a new shadow civilization upon its ruins. Nothing less will destroy the beigeist totalitarianism of the mundanes.

Allow me to close with the Sith Academy mantra:

Power is our passion
War is our way
Darkness is our destiny
The Force shall set us free

February 9, 2013 at 11:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't believe anyone is taking The Sith guy seriously. His site verges on parody of Reactionary ideals.

It seem like someone wanting to create something like a modernized super Mongol Empire but ... starting with a bunch of people calling themselves Klingons? Even the roleplaying Nazis that one sees on the Alternative Right don't fall that low in the magical thinking well.

Even worse his site design seems Prole, terrible mistake for self-proclaimed memetic engineers.

February 9, 2013 at 11:39 AM  
Anonymous Erik said...

I have two words for you. The first is the name of a Biblical prophet. The second is "Powell."

This should read "the name of a Biblical patriarch". The antediluvian figure in question has only late postdiluvian attribution of prophecy; if you ask someone to name the prophets of the Bible, they're not going to include Methuselah's father on the same list as Elijah and Isaiah.

February 9, 2013 at 1:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Endarkment is cool, but Star Wars is very lame.

Sorry bro.

Plus it would be kind of sad for an evil empire to be taken down by a cease and desist letter.

February 9, 2013 at 3:57 PM  
Blogger Aris Katsaris said...

"But you can't keep him from knowing that his government didn't collaborate with Hitler to smash Stalin."

Well, UK and USA collaborated with Germany and Italy to crush the Stalin-supported Republicans in Spain, and then Stalin and Hitler collaborated to crush the UK-allied Poland, and *then* finally Stalin and UK/USA collaborated to crush Hitler.

So yeah, if you only remember the *last* of these collaborations...

Mind you I agree that Stalin and Hitler aren't equidistant to Progressivism, that Stalin is closer to it. But the line I have in mind is something like this:
H..S......P

Hitlerism & Stalinism -- militarist
Progressivism -- anti-militarist.

Hitlerism & Stalinism - single-party systems
Progressivism -- multi-party systems

Hitlerism & Stalinism - kill political opponents
Progressivism - don't kill political opponents

Hitlerism -- kills Jews and homosexuals
Stalinism -- oppresses Jews and homosexuals
Progressivism -- embraces Jews and homosexuals

February 9, 2013 at 7:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

But why not troll a more deserving community, e.g. white nationalists?

Nigga, please. Pretty much everything you see in the media looks like it was designed to troll white nationalists. You can't top that.

Stalinism -- oppresses Jews and homosexuals
Progressivism -- embraces Jews and homosexuals


Progressivism didn't embrace fags during Stalin's time - that didn't happen til c.1970. Mid-century, it nearly universally agreed that homosexuality was a mental disorder, at best. The commies probably would have gotten with the program if they had lasted long enough. Those old lefties from that era who are still around, have.

Likewise, progressives haven't yet discovered that polygamy, pedophilia, zoophilia, and necrophilia are just as valid as heterophilia, but they will, and the same people who would thoughtlessly denounce those practices today will embrace them.

February 9, 2013 at 11:54 PM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

Comrade, one of these days you're going to figure out the problem started with that Martin Luther character.

I too eagerly await MM's exegesis of Luther. Should be a multi-volume powerhouse of historical revisionism.

February 10, 2013 at 11:03 AM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

Some quick points,

1) I quibble with Moldbug's analogy of monarchy with dictatorship. Most post Roman Empire monarchies and empires were oligarchical in nature, not autocratic. Specifically, the Old World realms practiced hereditary oligarchy. Rather than being ruled by one all powerful monarch European realms usually gave considerable sovereignty to local aristocrats who had inherited their titles to rule smaller jurisdictions.

The legal system of aristocratic Europe reflected the reality of decentralized aristocracy through the legal system which was largely set up to handle disputes between opposing royals rather than between royals and peasants.

Local aristocrats usually had substantial autonomy, e.g., the ones who waged war against Paris during the Fronde were contesting the loss of the "privileges" taken from them by Mazarin. Obviously, if pre-Fronde France were a straight up dictatorship then the lesser royals outside Paris would not have been strong enough to have waged war against Paris in the first place. Indeed they wouldn't have had privileges for Mazarin to revoke in the first place. Strong kings such as Louis XIV were rare - when Napoleon quipped the Sun King was the only king of France worthy of the throne he was guilty of exaggerating not lying.

2) One of the most important differences between late 20th century Progressivism and Stalinist Russia is that the Soviet state organs all obeyed Stalin whereas the Progressive agencies have have nobody to report to. This makes the Progressive system nuttier than the old, wonderfully simple, hard left regimes.

Stalin was truly the undisputed helmsman of the Soviet ship of state. The Progressive presidents wish they had Stalin's powers. Instead, the progressive presidents, along with their philosopher King relatives in the EU corridors, are mere independent contractors who serve at the pleasure of the Civil Service/Cathedral which has no Stalin to reign them in.

Whatever else may be said about Uncle Joe nobody can say he served at the pleasure of the Soviet Bureaucracy. The bureaucrats served Stalin, and only Stalin, much as the Tsarist agencies served the Tsars and how the French Civil Service served Louis XIV.

February 10, 2013 at 11:29 AM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

When Nixon (supposedly) asked what Zhu Enlai thought of the French Revolution Zhou said it was too early to tell. After witnessing the Hollande/EU regime does anyone still claim the French have better government than what could have been provided by the Bourbons?

PS: Carlyle has a dandy of a parody of the French Revolution our Supreme Warlord may want to check out.

February 10, 2013 at 11:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I read straight down to this: "Could any more penetrating portrait of an American election be penned? 'Not fundamentally different from calligraphy lessons.'"

Then I laughed for five minutes.

February 10, 2013 at 12:49 PM  
Anonymous Reactor said...

sconzey:

But England already has a Queen, albeit not a monarch, and she and her heirs and descendants are considerably more popular than Charles Stross. What do you think of the chances of a second Restoration ?

This chap thinks a revitalised British monarchy could be the vehicle of a Second Reformation:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gQoiGpqD4_E

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lnO2J8n6f6I

February 10, 2013 at 2:33 PM  
Anonymous Reactor said...

Darth Evil:

Christianity and other light side ideologies are simply too weak and delusional

Who you calling "light side"?

what is needed, and what I am bringing to this planet, is a religion of power worship and manifested dark side energy in the tradition of Momammed and Hitler.

Perhaps the real Mohams will join forces with you, lol.

February 10, 2013 at 3:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

--

Destroy Cultural Marxism:

http://destoryculturalmarxism.blogspot.com/2013/01/what-is-cultural-marxism.html


--

February 10, 2013 at 5:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

UK and USA collaborated with Germany and Italy to crush the Stalin-supported Republicans in Spain

Bullshit.

February 10, 2013 at 6:01 PM  
Blogger Aris Katsaris said...

> Progressivism didn't embrace fags during Stalin's time - that didn't happen til c.1970.

Yes, but modern-day communists and modern-day Nazis still oppose homosexuality.

It's noteworthy that Russia is currently attempting to make its anti-homosexuality one of the points of its opposition towards the progressive/liberal/Universalist/whatever-you-want-to-call-it West, as it attempts to collect both the remnants of communists and neonazis to its banner.

My more general point is that the left-wing/right-wing axis doesn't work any more -- it worked when supposed "middle" and "left" were allied against the "right" (WWII) and it worked when "right" and "middle" were allied against the left (Cold War), but not when the supposed left and the supposed right (Communism and right-wing nationalism) are under the same banner and allied against the supposed middle (Universalism).

In Greece, for example, both communists and Neonazis got recently a great boost in political power. Did the Greek Overton widen in both directions? No! These supposedly opposed positions in the right-left axis got that power by roughly spouting the same position against (Universalist/Progressive/Liberal) Europe.

And currently it's neither Cuba, nor Vietnam, nor North Korea that are legislating same-sex marriage.

It's true that progressives see Stalin as closer to them than they see Hitler, but they see both as very distant from them in the *same* direction, a direction progressives see the world as moving away from.

February 10, 2013 at 7:10 PM  
Blogger Debra said...

Among the great achievements of the Reformation was the rapid diffusion of the heresy through the printing press...
Were swords still around then ?
Probably not...
Might makes right is a very ho hum... philosophy ?
If we go all the way back to "Beowulf", it is indeed possible to see that the most.. physically powerful were held in check by an honor code that they were even capable, in many cases of imposing THEMSELVES through self discipline. Even they did not do as they pleased. And they did not say "liberty" in every sentence, either.
How about reading the end of "Beowulf" ? When the aging chief goes out to tackle the dragon ?
He COULD HAVE restored the pilfered treasure to the dragon's hoard, and let the dragon go back to sleep.
But.. he would not have been perceived as brave by his younger men. Not good for a chief.
Sometimes what is wise behavior on one plane of existence is folly on another.
And when the worlds collide, nobody ends up winning.
That is why our ancestors were very pessimistic, and did not believe in.. heaven, oops, Disneyland for us.
Mencius, you should read some Corneille. It strikes me that you talk about the monarchy from a.. democrat's perspective ?
I am not sure that our ancestors, even going way way way back preached..or practiced..the recourse to brute, unadulterated, unmediated force the way that we have been consistently doing since.. the Enlightenment ?...Before ?
The price of.. progress ??
Probably.
One last thing : my mother said "sticks and bones may break my bones but words will never hurt me".
The Internet is a fantastic channeling of our aggressive impulses into.. words. (Words, not swords.)
Is that progress ?
Maybe. Maybe not.
Typing on a keyboard does not exercise them thar muscles the way a sword does, though.
But then.. there is so much less risk involved, right ?? Who's gonna.. die from typing on a keyboard ?
That said, I am not a great fan of revolution, which has the merit of meaning... what it says it means : think "revolve"...
But a little more physical exercise for our aggressive impulses, that would be nice, thank you.

February 11, 2013 at 12:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have been tempted to troll majorityrights.com by installing myself as a guest author. Nowadays they have abandoned "Salterism" in favour of increasingly abstruse Heideggerian ontology, which is ripe for a Sokal hoax. Especially if what you say is 90% applause lights, and 10% out of left-field.

MajorityRights.com hasn't "abandoned" "Salterism".

February 11, 2013 at 3:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is certainly no populist violence in London, and there hasn't been any for 50 years.

There won't need to be mass outbreaks of populist violence because it is now trivial to cut the supply lines to cities and becoming more so every day.

February 11, 2013 at 3:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The political system becomes irrelevant if it cannot deliver social goods while alternatives can. Golden Dawn in Greece is onto the correct strategy in setting up blood donations, food delivery, shadow enforcement, etc.

It is also successfully forging international ties:

http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/greek-far-right-party-has-made-contact-with-bavarian-neo-nazis-a-881303.html

February 11, 2013 at 3:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

UK and USA collaborated with Germany and Italy to crush the Stalin-supported Republicans in Spain


Who was it who said something that stupid?

February 11, 2013 at 7:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, but modern-day communists and modern-day Nazis still oppose homosexuality.

Communists in Western Europe and the Americas switched over to pro-homo and the whole "cultural marxist" agenda decades ago. Read Paul Gottfried's "The Strange Death of Marxism" to catch up with the times.

February 11, 2013 at 7:21 AM  
Anonymous Federico said...

My more general point is that the left-wing/right-wing axis doesn't work any more

Moldbug is referring to ideology, not practical effects.

Self-identified leftists and rightists have neurological differences, which bequeath contrasting values.

Leftists are more hostile than rightists to ethnocentrism, dominance, inequality and unfairness. They are also more intelligent on average.

The deontology of communism, progressivism and principled libertarianism is based on equality and social fairness. They each have a different rationalisation on this theme.

Moldbug argues that progressivism and communism have common problems, caused by similar deontology. Progressivism suffers a social calculation problem, similar to communism's economic calculation problem. I don't share Moldbug's philosophy of government, but parliamentary democracy does seem an inferior cog in the constitutional machine, which—like communism—is motivated by deontological urges for social levelling. Arbitrary sovereignty (absolute power) is profoundly harmful, but arbitrary political property rights within a countervailing power structure (e.g. constitutional monarchy, with an effectual monarch) might easily be superior to the status quo. All branches of leftism are sub-optimally hostile to arbitrary political authority.

You are correct that, in a different inference, it might be more sensible to categorise communism and Nazism together, apart from progressivism. The former are both, in practice, hierarchical and totalitarian. But that is beside Moldbug's point. (It would not be if communism were intended to be like that.)

Hitlerism & Stalinism -- militarist
Progressivism -- anti-militarist.

Hitlerism & Stalinism - kill political opponents
Progressivism - don't kill political opponents


Really?

February 11, 2013 at 8:04 AM  
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February 11, 2013 at 9:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

--


Will Next Pope Be Non-Western (African or Mestizo)?


http://occamsrazormag.wordpress.com/2013/02/11/poll-will-next-pope-be-non-western-african-or-mestizo/


--

February 11, 2013 at 11:47 AM  
Blogger Aris Katsaris said...

> "communists in Western Europe and the Americas switched over to pro-homo and the whole "cultural marxist" agenda decades ago."

So, communists switched to pro-homosexual views in only the places where they didn't actually have power -- while they remained anti-homosexual in all the places that they did have state power (Asia and Eastern Europe)?

Doesn't that by itself sounds like the communists being forced to move towards progressive views, not progressives moving towards communist views?

February 11, 2013 at 12:37 PM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

and what I am bringing to this planet, is a religion of power worship and manifested dark side energy in the tradition of Momammed and Hitler.

So TGGP's genocidal will to power isn't enough for you?

February 11, 2013 at 5:48 PM  
Blogger G. Tingey said...

Actually, it has just got really horrible.
We are about to introduce secret courts, with secret information, never shown to the defence
Yes, really!
Totalitarian Britain, in the next session, unless something is done.
NOT so beige a dictatorship, huh?

February 12, 2013 at 12:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The comment section is rife with unapologetic idiocy.
Delete everything.

February 12, 2013 at 2:50 PM  
OpenID mukatsuku said...

As a Randian, it's interesting how Objectivism dovetails with the Moldbug view. If you persist in asking 'how is Objectivism going to win?' you eventually get the answer that Objectivists will first take over Harvard, and the rest is the easy part. From the Moldbug view, they seek to convert the existing Universalist theocracy to an Objectivist theocracy. Of course, Objectivists are a subset of Universalist anyway - anti-racist, believers that moral potential is orthogonal to IQ, hypergamy-defenders (women are perfectly justified to divorce if they find a better man).

But converting a theocracy is the most unrealistic goal imaginable. And you still have an Orwellian theocracy when you're done.

Getting back to the point of this blog post, when Moldbug advocates an English Stuart Restoration, he may really be making the case for an American Stuart Restoration. For one thing, there are no currently seated royals in America to get in the way. For another, Washington's approval rating is far below that of Buckingham Palace.

A simple campaign along the lines of 'Washington is not fixable - Restore the Stuarts' could actually succeed. Call a Constitution Convention and hand over sovereignty to the Stuarts.

February 13, 2013 at 9:41 AM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

From the Moldbug view, they seek to convert the existing Universalist theocracy to an Objectivist theocracy. Of course, Objectivists are a subset of Universalist anyway - anti-racist, believers that moral potential is orthogonal to IQ, hypergamy-defenders (women are perfectly justified to divorce if they find a better man).

Defunding the Universalists is a neater countermeasure because defunding the progs can be done without their consent, in most cases anyway.

Some counter-Cathedral measures include:

1) Call your state legislators or Governors (especially if they are GOP) and ask them to force public universities to accept MOOCs for college credit.

I hear the economy is doing splendid these days, so splendid that hundreds of thousands of leftist humanities professors surely won't object to looking for work in the private sector after Sebastian Thrun's outfit automates their jobs out of existence.

2) Boycott newspapers. The newspapers are already hemaragaing revenue to the internet behomoths, so another good push should finish them off. I must say it's wonderful passing the Current Events newsstand at Barnes & Noble without seeing a print version of Newsweek. Let's send more newspapers to their grave like Newsweek this year instead of waiting for Boehner to outsmart Pelosi. And waiting, and waiting...

3) Walk the streets for Wisconsin-esque anti-public union referendum petitions.

February 13, 2013 at 9:05 PM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

So, communists switched to pro-homosexual views in only the places where they didn't actually have power -- while they remained anti-homosexual in all the places that they did have state power (Asia and Eastern Europe)?

Doesn't that by itself sounds like the communists being forced to move towards progressive views, not progressives moving towards communist views?


The old revolutionary left was not the same as the technocratic Western left of today and they have different origins. Hard leftism, which is now extinct everywhere except for two courageous holdouts in North Korea and Cuba, was concentrated in Catholic and Orthodox Christian nations. The technocratic Western left originates from, and still enjoys its strongest support in the Protestant European civilizations.

Their bases of support also differ. The Communist voter base came from blue collar workers. Ironically, Hitler's Nazi party was competing with Ernst Thallman's German Communist Party for the same base of blue collar Germans, many of whom split their votes between the NSDAP and Communists in 1933. Towards the end of the campaign Thallman was reduced to copying Hitler's nationalist rhetoric in an unsuccessful effort to keep Hitler from eating into the German Communist's blue collar bloc.

On the other hand, the technocrats base of support came from the upper classes. The Fabian socialists who began gathering power in the interwar years (but who existed prior to 1914) were often elitists such as Sir Julian Huxley who, in part, supported eugenics as a way to keep working class British under control.

February 14, 2013 at 8:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Undiscovered Jew,

Is this your blog:

https://nyuntermensch.wordpress.com/

February 15, 2013 at 2:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

http://www.campusreform.org/blog/?ID=4604

Progressives have made "The Travyon Martin Award for Social Justice".

February 16, 2013 at 12:36 AM  
Blogger TGGP said...

Somebody linked this at Sailer's (in a threat about anthropology, oddly enough), but it seems far more relevant at UR:
http://www.theamericanconservative.com/millman/steven-soderbergh-political-theorist/

February 16, 2013 at 10:47 AM  
Blogger TGGP said...

Also surprised there's been no mention of Lawrence Auster, who doesn't expect to live much longer.

February 17, 2013 at 11:49 AM  
Anonymous RS said...

> Self-identified leftists and rightists have neurological differences, which bequeath contrasting values.

p<0.05 ?

Most findings at this p are not valid. The mechanisms of p inflation are pretty well-understood by those who care to scrutinize the matter.

The finding on the anterior cingulate cortex has a better p and might actually be true, not that the r is particularly impressive.

Left and right do have some meaning... but their meaningfulness is not particularly overawing. As I explored here in detail years ago.

February 17, 2013 at 4:43 PM  
Anonymous RS said...

> The Communist voter base came from blue collar workers. Ironically, Hitler's Nazi party was competing with Ernst Thallman's German Communist Party for the same base of blue collar Germans, many of whom split their votes between the NSDAP and Communists in 1933. Towards the end of the campaign Thallman was reduced to copying Hitler's nationalist rhetoric in an unsuccessful effort to keep Hitler from eating into the German Communist's blue collar bloc.

That may not be wrong, but doesn't give the whole picture as I understand it. NS was very strong among peasants, of whom there were still a teeming amount, and also among petit bourgeois.

February 17, 2013 at 4:56 PM  
Anonymous RS said...

I respect Auster, though I've not read him voluminously - and salute him, as I have done before. I'm sure he isn't perfect, but he's been willing to do stuff like give Solzhenitsyn a hearing, among other virtues. He's not a rote jingo.

February 17, 2013 at 5:12 PM  
Anonymous RS said...

> Leftists are more hostile than rightists to ethnocentrism, dominance, inequality and unfairness. They are also more intelligent on average.

Sure, this is a pretty decent resume, to my mind.

Rightists are more inclined to admire traditional aspects of self-discipline and virtue, like courage, though this is not a hard and fast rule.

'Virtue' to a leftist is more like 'plain' altruism -- as opposed to Nietzsche's feelings on altruism and egoism existing in a complex and somewhat puzzling dialectic. Of course 'virtue' began, in antiquity, as something pretty different - verging on equivalence with 'strength'.

But all this, like much else, winds up being more than a little elusive, as Nietzsche and Heidegger would agree. Even Derrida's characterization of this elusiveness does not ring entirely false, though I am far from suggesting that one read Derrida.

February 17, 2013 at 5:27 PM  
Anonymous ivvenalis said...

Some chick at Foreign Policy notices that most modern states aren't actually sovereign and seems aware of some sort of connection between this and "human rights":

http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2013/02/14/hate_obamas_drone_war

February 17, 2013 at 11:15 PM  
Anonymous RS said...

Gonna repeat myself: people here should be more interested in Alrenous' stuff on the blithely-accepted modern view of the mind-body problem, qua a deep layer of power struggle and our overall 'captivity'. I never saw it in quite that way before. Wake up people, it's a hugely important and evil power modus.

We need multiple people to work on this, and create a wiser replacement outlook, as a part of Western Sarah Palingenesis. Alrenous already set u up with the links at Mencius' last poem.

Guess I should get my own blog soon.

February 18, 2013 at 6:54 AM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

NS was very strong among peasants, of whom there were still a teeming amount, and also among petit bourgeois.

The NSDAP's voting base included the middle-middle class as well as blue collar peasants whom Hitler successfully lured away from the mainstream socialist SPD and the radical KPD. The upper middle class, military officers, and both old and new money upper classes preferred mainstream Christian Democrat/Industrialist parties.

Across non-Protestant Europe the working classes were very receptive to hard left violence. Labor unions especially were a stronghold of political support for the hard left. In Germany, some examples of blue collar revolution include the 1919 German Revolution which brought forced the abdication of the Kaiser, and the 1923 Hamburg Uprising.

The only aristocrats who supported revolutionary leftism were those like Felix Dzerzhinsky and Kropotkin who abandoned their royalist lineage and joined the peasants to wage war on the ancient regime.

The Protestant nation technocrat elite never enjoyed much if any support from the blue collar classes because the technocrats preferred a slow motion takeover of government and society through the building of unaccountable state bureaucracies.

The twisted sisters of modern day US progressives in Britain, the Fabian Socialists, were more inclined to support eugenics as a way to keep the blue collar masses from outbreeding the upper classes.

February 18, 2013 at 8:30 AM  
Anonymous The Undiscovered Jew said...

Another way the Protestant left is distinct from the nearly extinct hard left is the fact the Communist propaganda concentrated on a shorter list of falsehoods on major policies and that any policy failures caused by those policies could all be traced back to flaws in fundamental principles of Communist ideology.

The Technocrat left has, from a certain perspective, screwed up even worse than the Communists because the Technocrat's failed policies cover every aspect of society; everything from major policy disasters such as non-white immigration to global warming and all the way down to micro-nanny state policies like regulating against incandescent light bulbs in favor of mercury-toxic fluorescent light bulbs.

Tracing policy failure in USG's micro-policies, and even macro ones, requires a highly complex diagram chart (such as the infamous and Borg Cube-like Obamacare flowchart.)

To trace failure in the Soviet Union, one only has to work one's way up to the hierarchy chain to the Politburo and Soviet Premier. To trace policy failure in USG (and the even more bureaucratic European Union) on a micro-policy as simple as fluorescent light bulbs requires one to go dig through a labyrinth of thousands of faceless Cathedral bureaucracies and state regulatory organs that have no central command to report to.

The progressive era has been one of rule by unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats. The citizens of Communist nations only had one Stalin to worry about, in the modern West we have to live in terror of countless micro-Stalins ruling tiny bureaucratic fiefdoms such as Harvard, the New York Times, nonprofit think tanks, and DC where the elites are securely cocooned from reality.

February 18, 2013 at 8:49 AM  
Anonymous RS said...

> Across non-Protestant Europe the working classes were very receptive to hard left violence.

Google has a documentary on the Spanish War which is pretty good and, most wonderfully, is about six hours long, hence not superficial. Been meaning to re-watch that two or three times.

February 18, 2013 at 5:57 PM  
Anonymous Alrenous said...

RS, people are lazy. Therefore.

-

"Comrade, one of these days you're going to figure out the problem started with that Martin Luther character."

I traced it all the way back to ancient Athens.

Protagoras is generally regarded as the first of the sophists.

Note the hilariously un-self-aware section on democracy. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sophistry

But the pathology's extreme age suggests to me it's a human universal. Indeed, there's good evidence that our brain evolved in the first place due to a sophistry arms race.
For example, the brain's effortless and instinctive ability to gull anything stupider than it is.

Nevertheless, any time this devil in the genes is not vigorously suppressed, you'll get democracy or an equivalent.

February 19, 2013 at 4:49 PM  
Blogger C.J. Caswell said...

I like this guy. When people figure out just how lowest-common-denominator democracy is, they will be shocked that intelligent people allowed this garbage to go on as long as they have.

February 21, 2013 at 4:09 PM  

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