The Dissident Right Embraces Realism, Not Nihilism
This response to our recent discussion of Bronze Age Mindset was sent to us anonymously via post in hard copy. We have made a few very minor editorial alterations, necessarily without the author’s approval, before presenting it to you here. — Eds. To begin, I want to express my thanks to The American Mind and to…
This response to our recent discussion of Bronze Age Mindset was sent to us anonymously via post in hard copy. We have made a few very minor editorial alterations, necessarily without the author’s approval, before presenting it to you here. — Eds.
To begin, I want to express my thanks to The American Mind and to the Claremont Institute for allowing Mr. Anton to publish a review of Bronze Age Mindset. The review demonstrates the quality and prescience of the publishers. These are important issues that are not being discussed anywhere else. I also want to express my thanks to the editors for allowing Mr. B.A. Pervert to publish his essay and the other essays published in response. These essays demonstrate the breadth and depth of the thought that have been attracted to pages of The American Mind. I offer this small essay as a means of extending the conversation.
In his essay, BAP noted that the purpose of Bronze Age Mindset was not to offer a discussion of forms of government or of the ideas behind the American Founding. As BAP states, the book is not and was not intended to be a political manifesto. As such, it must be taken for what it is.
However, it is not difficult to articulate the political problem that forms the backdrop of the dissident right movement. Indeed, BAP states the problem in his American Mind essay, although he states it obliquely. Stated bluntly and succinctly, it is this: leftists do not believe in democracy and, consequently, rightists have lost faith in democracy. The latter is a function of the former. The enormity of this problem cannot be understated because theories of democracy have completely and utterly destroyed the perceived legitimacy of other forms of government. Even communist totalitarian states have felt—and continue to feel—the need to dress their tyrannies in the clothes of democracy. If “Americanism” is long dead, what else is there? Shall we return to monarchy?
Given the simplicity of the political problem, there is no need to explore philosophies and deeper issues as Mr. Anton seems to desire. There is no need for long-winded and many-worded debates about the nature of rights or the validity of political structures. Such discussions are pointless if upwards of half of your voting population does not actually believe in democracy. Young rightists fully grasp the pointlessness of debating the Founding Principles when the leftists do not believe them anymore.
It is self-evident that leftists do not believe in democracy. For a democracy to function, several sets of beliefs must be widely held. First, everyone must acquiesce to and accept the results of the vote. Leftists no longer accept the results of the vote if they lose. Two indisputable examples of this have been on display for the last three years: Brexit and the American left’s efforts to undermine, take out, andimpeach President Trump.
How to Subvert a Democracy
Counting the Vote
Leftist use many tactics. If the vote count is not going their way on election night, leftists cheat. At three in the morning, suddenly boxes of ballots are “found” which contain mostly leftist votes. The magically-appearing boxes of ballots never seem to be “found” in rightist-leaning voting precincts. If election-night cheating does not work, leftists demand recounts under the winking eyes of colluding local left-leaning judges and election officials. The recounts continue until the leftist candidates win and then, suddenly, the recounts end. Of outcomes overturned by recounts, the vast majority have given the victory to leftist candidates.
If cheating and recounting does not work, then leftists will “resist,” and command “Do not normalize,” and shout “Not my President,” and appoint a special counsel, and on and on. In addition or alternatively, the leftists and the leftist propaganda media will begin the drumbeat for a repeat vote—because a 52-48 vote is too close and that cannot really be the “will of the people.” In Europe especially, the voters will be required to vote and vote and vote again until leftists get the vote they want.
Or else the leftist politicians and bureaucrats just ignore the vote. And/or they ask leftist judges to overturn the vote. This is what is called lawfare and, for some reason, only leftists engage in it. (As an aside, leftists are also hypocritical. None of this resistance behavior is tolerated if the leftist candidate wins.)
For a democracy to function, there must be fair play. Leftists do not play fair; as noted, they cheat. Everywhere you look, in leftist states and enclaves, the voting rules are skewed toward cheating. Laws are passed allowing paper and mail-in ballots that are easily manipulated, voting machines that are easily hacked, ballot harvesting on election day and night and over-night, the use of erasable pencils in voting booths, voting without the need for voter ID, and more. Aside from rules which destroy the integrity of the ballot, leftists cheat outright: “voters” are bused from one polling place to another, ghost polling places are set up, ballots are cast by the dead and by illegals, loyalists cast the correct votes for an entire nursing home, and so on. Immigration, too, is a method of stuffing the ballot box.
If cheating does not work, the leftists will keep changing the rules until the vote is forever a leftist vote. The “jungle primary” is a good example of how the voting rules can create a one-party state. See California and Louisiana. Vote splitting is another method of not playing fair. The creation and support of alternative parties to split the rightist vote is common in Europe. In the US, evidence supports the conclusion that the Libertarian party was formed by leftists to siphon off votes from the Republican Party to enhance the chances of a leftist victories. And vote splitting works: see for example the 2018 midterm elections. Pretend Republican candidates are also run who immediately switch parties upon being elected. Expanding the franchise is another tactic, be it giving the vote to felons or “Irish voters” who live someplace other than Ireland. There is no fair play among the leftists; voting is just a mechanism for the exercise and accrual of raw power.
For a democracy to function, there must be a free exchange of ideas. Leftists do not believe in this. For the leftist, the consent of the governed and the opinions of the voters must be manufactured through the use of propaganda and the censoring and punishment of wrong-think. The propaganda and censorship is everywhere. It begins in preschool and continues throughout one’s education. Leftist-approved correct-think is provided in every format—television, movies, books, magazines, video games, and even in standardized test questions. Expressing wrong-think is dangerous, physically and financially.
The result is massive censorship even though the US is a “free” society where speech is “protected.” However, in the surveillance systems being imposed worldwide, only leftist speech is protected; rightist speech is ruthlessly suppressed.” I am sorry, Sir. Your card has been declined because of your political views. I am afraid we’ll be closing your bank account too. Consequently, the dissident right must meme, troll, write books “in a mood of revelry and laughter,” and speak in code. This is something Straussians understand. This fact gets to another reason that leftists hate democracy; censorship of wrong-think cannot be enforced in the privacy of the voting booth.
For a democracy to function, everyone must be open to being persuaded by the free flow of ideas. However, the research conclusively shows that “persuadability” is entirely dependent on a homogenous pool of voters. In multicultural or diverse democracies, people vote their tribe. That is, voters may not be persuadable on the basis of policy and/or ideas. Voting patterns in the US and everywhere else are evidence of this.
Although one is forbidden to speak of this, leftists understand very well the tribal nature of multicultural voting. This is among the reasons they are so intent upon importing into the US and into Europe hordes of certain types of immigrants (legal and otherwise). Those immigrants will vote their tribe as a block. As long as the leftist candidates provide them with “free stuff,” the immigrants and their descendants will be compliant leftist vote-slaves for decades. As they say, “demographics are destiny.”
The middle class “wagies”—discussed below—are being exploited by this alliance between the skill-less, jobless, dependent-on-government-largess underclass, and the leftist overlords now in charge of the giant corporations. Young rightists see this plainly—as do young leftists. Young leftists have a solution; rightists do not. Consider President Johnson’s famous reported observation about black voters and the Great Society.
For a democracy to function, truly important issues must be subject to the vote. However, in much of the West, important and society-changing decisions are made by bureaucrats and judges. Abortion and gay marriage are the clearest examples. To that we can add all of the widely-reported decisions by District Court judges in the US blocking various actions taken by the Trump administration. Leftists lauded the judges’ rulings even though such arc clearly the opposite of democratic. In the UK, the recent adoration of Lady Hale by leftists has been amazing to witness.
There is a lot of other evidence that, despite what they say, leftists do not believe in democracy. Certainly, our globalist elites do not believe in democracy. According to our elites, the voters are too dumb to rule themselves. They must have “experts” to guide them and tell them what to think and how to vote.
From all of this, no one should be surprised that rightists generally have lost their faith in democracy. Moreover, rightists have also lost their faith in representative democracy because our “representatives” are clearly disloyal.
When Representative Democracy Isn’t
Although leftists are agitating to abolish it, for now, the US remains a republic. The Framers of the US Constitution rightly believed that pure democracy was dangerous. Historically, the Greek city-states lost their freedoms and democratic governments because the voters were stampeded by passion and deception. When contemplating governmental structures, a democracy of elected representatives is one mechanism that helps avoid the dangers inherent in the ever-changing passions of the “mob.”
Under theories of republican forms of democracy, the representatives ought to be loyal to the voters that elected them. However, in the Western republics, our elected representatives have been anything but loyal. It seems that, no matter who is elected, the representatives are beholden to some group other than the voters. NAFTA is a good example since, in theory, not one US Congressman or Senator should have ever voted to send American jobs to some other country. Brexit is another example. A huge number of MPs from districts that voted Leave have refused to support the choice made by those voters.
The strange support for keeping US troops in Syria is another example. No US representative should have supported using US troops to defend the border of Syria and Turkey, particularly since so many of those same representatives see no need to defend the US-Mexico border. “Our” elected representatives also seem to be easily purchased or compromised, and they all seem to get rich while in office. None of this creates confidence in the loyalty of “our” representatives.
Realism Not Nihilism
Bronze Age Mindset speaks to young men because it speaks in terms of reality. If there is a sense of nihilism in the book, it is because the political problem is seemingly intractable, unsolvable. If a vast majority of leftists do not actually believe in democracy—do not believe in accepting the results of an election—then the political system is broken. Is every populist Republican president going to be subject to the same sort of resistance that President Trump is enduring? Young rightists have no patience for conservatives who will not deal with this reality.
And, seemingly, conservatives have nothing to say about this core political problem. Engaging in interesting discussions of natural rights and the glories of the Constitution is not useful if the leftists are going to ignore, subvert, and destroy the voting process. For the dissident right, this is an attitude of realism, not nihilism. It is not nihilistic to refuse to engage in pointless discussions and pointless behavior.
This attitude has a wider application than just the political. As mentioned above, there is a rising meme called “wagies” that will find its place alongside the concept of “normies.” “Wagies” are middle-class workers who have internalized the idea of working hard to get ahead. But, for young people on the right—and the left—being a wagie is dumb. Wagies are just working hard to pay taxes to support the non-working lower classes receiving government benefits. The rest of the money made by wagies is paid over to banks and giant corporations owned by rich non-working leftist elites.
This is the Western equivalent of the communist slogan “from each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs,” along with the wisdom of Orwell that some are more equal than others. The underclass is in “need,” our leftist overlords are more equal than the rest of us, and wagies must work. Smart and able young people have seen this dynamic since they entered the school system. Those with talent, intelligence, industry, and fortitude found their education sacrificed on the altar of those in need of “accommodation.” We are now witnessing a rebellion against these ideas.
For the young on the left, the political solution is easy: vote socialist so that you too can be the recipient of government benefits. For the young on the right, there is no easy solution. Clearly, typical conservative political action provides no solution. Mainstream conservatives have no realistic vision of life to offer. And, worse yet, conservatives have failed. To paraphrase an unnameable author from the right, conservatives have conserved nothing; they cannot even conserve two genders. That should be easy enough, but: failure.
So, where are young rightists to turn? Capital is woke, so there is no haven in the corporate world. Plus, only wagies work for giant corporations and it is dumb to be a wagie. The military and law enforcement are increasingly woke, the police are hated more and more, and our elites seem intent on sending soldiers to die in far-away deserts. Those are not options. There is no refuge in the more and more “inclusive” church, and the Benedict Option will not work. So, what is to be done?
One option says: let us lift weights, become the best specimens of masculinity that we can become; let us encourage health, normality, and nobility; let us laugh and meme and have what fun we can have and speak realism at least among ourselves. If the West is going to burn and we cannot vote our way out of it, let us at least find a band of brothers and watch the spectacle together. The fires will keep us warm at least. That is not nihilism; that is realism.