A friend passes along a discussion O.D. readers will undoubtedly find of interest:
Good to talk to you last night. I wanted to continue this discussion we had last night regarding Britain as the weak link in the chain, which I think it most certainly is. As you will recall, what began our discussion was an article in the Daily Mail of January 2nd, concerned the newly-founded English Defense League. That article noted:
The rise of the English Defence League has been rapid. Since its formation at the start of the summer the group has organised nearly 20 major protests in Britain’s cities, including London, Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds, Luton, Nottingham, Glasgow and Swansea.
Its leaders are professional and articulate and they claim that the EDL is a peaceful, non-racist organisation. But having spent time with them, there is evidence that this movement has a more disturbing side. There is talk of the need for a ‘street army’, and there are links with football hooligans and evidence that violent neo-Nazi groups including Combat 18, Blood and Honour and the British Freedom Fighters have been attending demos.
Violence has erupted at most of the EDL’s demonstrations. In total, nearly 200 people have been arrested and an array of weapons has been seized, including knuckledusters, a hammer, a chisel and a bottle of bleach.
As the EDL gains support across the UK, Muslims have already been targeted in unprovoked attacks. In the worst incident, a mob of 30 white and black youths is said to have surrounded Asian students near City University in central London and attacked them with metal poles, bricks and sticks while shouting racist abuse. Three people – two students and a passer-by who tried to intervene – were stabbed.
Following the Manchester protest, when 48 people were arrested during street violence, the Bolton Interfaith Council Executive issued a stark warning that race relations were under threat and Communities Secretary John Denham compared the EDL to Oswald Mosley’s Union of British Fascists, who ran amok in the Thirties. In response to these fears, the National Extremism Tactical Coordination Unit, a countrywide police team set up to combat domestic extremism, has been investigating the EDL.
‘The concern to me is how groups like this, either willingly or unwillingly, allow themselves to be exploited by very extreme right-wing groups like the National Front and the British Freedom Fighters,’ Metropolitan Police chief Sir Paul Stephenson has said.
Obviously we agree that the spontaneous organization of heretofore un-politicized portions of the White English working class, with what appears to be rational, level-headed leadership, is an event of much significance. A long time ago, conservative writer Mark Steyn pointed to the well-known conflict in Northern Ireland and the rise of opposing paramilitary groups there, with associated political fronts and parties, and noted that this arose since the combatants to a real political dispute could not rely on a state to impose a decision or were faced with a state that so heavily favored one side that an imposed solution was unacceptable to the point where thinking men convinced themselves of their moral right to resort to violence. It appears to me that the EDL is the beginning of this process in England itself.
Why England? Why England and not France? Why are English men willing to stand up and engage in battle while masked with Muslim settlers in their land while American men have yet to even take much exception to the massive Mexican settlement of their land? I think I know the answer to that question, but it will require a bit of explanation.
Conservative scholars have traced the introduction of what most call modern liberalism, what I would call cultural Marxism, to the influence of the Frankfurt School following the war. Allan Bloom’s “Closing of the American Mind” attracted a lot of attention due to Prof. Bloom’s critique of the students he found before him at the Univ of Chicago in the 70s and 80s as compared to those he knew and taught in the 50s and early 60’s. The first part of the book, dealing with his “I was there” account of the surrender of the traditional university to liberal social forces in the late 60s, and the third part of the book, in which he drew attention to the emptiness of his “nice” students with regard to their passion, sex lives, music, friendship and solidarity (a theme which Wolfe brought to a dramatic close with a book which I believe historians will be assigning 100 years from now, “I Am Charlotte Simmons”), but the bulk of the book, the second part, deals in depth with this importation of post-war Germanic philosophy into the Anglo-American world.
Many people who read that best-seller glossed over or simply skipped that second part. It is, however, the most important portion of the book and in fact is the explanation for the phenomena Bloom spends the rest of the book describing. Here is a very good summary of the argument from Professor Tom West of Claremont:
The cause of our current malaise, in Bloom’s diagnosis, is modern philosophy, which has infected us in two ways — through politics and through 19th and 20th century continental European thought. As for politics, says Bloom, America was founded on modern principles of liberty and equality that we got from Hobbes and Locke. Liberty turned out to mean freedom from all self-restraint, and equality turned out to mean the destruction of all differences of rank and even of nature. Our Founders may have acted, or have pretended to act, “with a firm reliance on divine providence” (Declaration of Independence) but their natural-rights philosophy, says Bloom, came from the atheists Hobbes and Locke. (Bloom hedges on whether the Founders were self-conscious atheists or merely the dupes of clever and lying philosophers.) Bloom characterizes the Lockean doctrine of the Founders in this way:
“[In the state of nature man] is on his own. God neither looks after him nor punishes him. Nature’s indifference to justice is a terrible bereavement for man. . . . [This doctrine] produced, among other wonders, the United States.” (163)
The practical result: “God was slowly executed here; it took two hundred years, but local theologians tell us He is now dead.” (230)Similarly, the Founders may have thought they were establishing a political order based on reason: Bloom stresses our initial claim to be the first political order so grounded. But the regime of reason turned out to be the regime where reason discovers the virtue of unleashing the passions. At first reason legitimates only the modest passions of industriousness and money-making. But having abandoned its older claim to be the rightful master of the soul, reason eventually lost its authority and became impotent against demands for self-indulgence and mindless self-expression.
The story of America, according to Bloom, is a tale of the practical working out of the degradation inherent in the logic of our founding principles:
“This is a regime founded by philosophers and their students. . . . Our story is the majestic and triumphant march of the principles of freedom and equality, giving meaning to all that we have done or are doing. There are almost no accidents; everything that happens among us is a consequence of one or both of our principles. . . . [T]he problem of nature [is] always present but always repressed in the reconstruction of man demanded by freedom and equality.” (97)Eventually, Bloom says, the infections occasioned by our political principles sapped the strength of religious faith and traditional morality. The relativism of today’s students is, in Bloom’s view, a perfect expression of the real soul of liberty, which from the start, in Hobbes’s thought, meant that life had no intrinsic meaning. Here, in Bloom’s view, is the ultimate source of the view that liberty means nothing more than self-realization or self-expression with no intrinsic moral limit. The anti-nature dogmas of women’s liberation, which deny the obvious natural differences between men and women in the name of equality, are destroying the last remnants of the family, which had been the core of society through most of America’s history. Likewise, the anti-nature dogmas of affirmative action — insisting that equal opportunity be suppressed until all categories of Americans come out exactly the same — deny the obvious natural differences among human beings in regard to ambition and intelligence.
Thus, according to Bloom, equality and liberty eventually produced self-satisfied relativism, which sees no need to aspire to anything beyond itself — “spiritual detumescence.” They also produced left-wing political movements which try to implement the “reconstruction of man demanded by freedom and equality” and which not only threaten but dominate important parts of our leading universities. Further, Bloom argues, Hobbesian-Lockean liberty was also designed to liberate scientific technology in order to conquer nature and make life comfortable. The very idea of a conquest of nature implies disrespect for natural limits and has contributed to the decline of respect for nature’s guidance in all areas of contemporary life.
The second cause of our problems today, Bloom tells us, is post-Lockean modern philosophy. The big names are Rousseau, Nietzsche, and Heidegger, but their views have been popularized (and degraded) by such men as Marx, Freud, and Max Weber. Their ideas have worked their way into our universities and our speech, giving us “The Self,” “Creativity,” “Culture,” and “Values” (four of Bloom’s chapter titles). These continental writers, more radical than Hobbes and Locke, all strongly denounced “bourgeois society,” i.e., democracy American style. From them we have learned to think of ourselves as despicably low. Yet at the same time, we have vulgarized the grand conceptions of especially Rousseau and Nietzsche and fitted them into our own democratic prejudices. Thus every nursery-school child is encouraged to be “creative.”
While Bloom was most immediately concerned with the effect of this importation on the United States and its academies, the same phenomena Bloom describes quickly blew through the entire Anglosphere, including far off New Zealand. The inherent logic of a regime based on liberty and equality, tied to the post-War Frankfurt School’s powerful critique of source of meaning or morality outside of the autonomous self, has swept through all of us, and all of our institutions. Professor Paul Gottfried’s work is almost entirely on this subject. A review of his masterful “After Liberalism: Mass Democracy in the Managerial State” summarizes his conclusions:
But good Whiggish liberalism lost out to other ideologies operating under the same label, and Gottfried devotes a good share of his book to identifying the rogue minds that undermined the bourgeois order. John Stuart Mill was the prototype of the new liberal, synthesizing the expressive liberty” of the individual with a plan for extensive income redistribution, and arguing for armed interventions in other nations to achieve liberal ends.
T.H. Green theorized about the “ethically engaged state,” which would renew communal identity through a new balance between liberty and order. John Dewey brought to the “new liberalism” the submersion of “individuality” into the sea of deliberate social change. Herbert Croly taught twentieth century liberals how to deconstruct “outdated habits” and “American provincialism” and how to hide personal preferences behind “historical necessity” and appeals to science. American Commissioner of Education John Ward Studebaker talked about “a living democratic faith” that the American government would first impress on its own citizens and then on the remainder of humankind. Karl Loewenstein theorized on the use of therapeutic methods to make democracy “fascism-resistant.” Teodor Adorno showed the new liberals how to relabel underdesirable political views as “prejudice,” relegating them to the clinic, or the jail. The work of John Rawls completed this transformation of liberalism from “fear of the state” to a program that would “continuously recreate civil society.”
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In Gottfried’s view, a “new” America is already here, with most inhabitants of the United States without fixed habits or solid communal loyalties. Public education serves as a center of indoctrination into the new American faith. U.S. foreign policy aims at building a “divine kingdom on earth” which conflates U.S. military, economic, and political patterns into a spiritual mission similar in its scope to that of seventeenth century Spain. As bearers of “the democratic will,” Americans are taught to see themselves as “more sincerely religious, better educated, and of nobler minds and of purer words than the men of any former republic.” The modern liberal creed sees government as a vehicle to promote individual gratification. The size of the American welfare state, Gottfried says, is no unintended policy accident, but fully in line with social democratic intent. The welfare state succeeds because it gives to most people what they want. The now dominant American ideology of pluralism, the author says, grants legitimacy to social plans that “transcend the present social reality by shattering it,” and at the same time justifies the projection of American power around the globe.
Note that Gottfried’s book was 1999 and this review in 2000, before 9/11, the War on Terrorism and our now entrenched policy of bringing democracy to the Muslim world, before the American creation of a new Muslim state in Europe founded on liberal principles, before the current financial crisis led to massive state involvement in our economy on a scale that was unimaginable in 1999. In other words, if political analysis involves seeing in the present undercurrents of ideas trends that will lead to certain real-world outcomes as night follows day, then Professor Gottfried has done an amazing job.
What does this mean for Britain? If Bloom was right, one would expect that, unlike the United States, a nation built and framed by ancient institutions with strong social standing would be able to resist the “infection” much more strongly than a nation, like the United States, that accepted the philosophical foundation of the regime of liberty and equality that is the source of the rot, the taint in the blood.
Here is where I leave these learned men and venture my own opinion.
While Bloom was right in his diagnosis his concern for the United States led him to ignore the implications of his theory for the UK. While at first glance it would appear that the UK would be more resilient to the Liberal Revolution than the U.S., in fact the opposite is true. This is so for two reasons.
First, as the Liberal Revolution involves de-legitimizing all sources of traditional authority outside of individual desire, its effect on the U.S. was minimal in scope (though still devastating) since the U.S. simply did not have very many strongly-entrenched sources of traditional authority. In the U.S., the only real source of authority is the Constitution, which the Warren Court found very easy to mould to fit the dictates of the new Liberal Revolution. This is so because of the very reason Bloom points out: the logical outcome of a doctrine of liberty and equality was already present at the Founding. The only real obstacle that needed to be smashed in the U.S. was Jim Crow and the legacy racial laws, which were fairly easily shot down, despite massive resistance in the South, and was shot down precisely on the basis of the Constitution.
On the other side of the ocean, however, we see an ancient kingdom literally groaning with long-entrenched sources of traditional authority arising outside of mass democratic consent or individual desire: The Church of England, the House of Lords, the Crown, the Common Law and thousands of local customs, petty officials and minor offices whose roots go back centuries. As the Liberal Revolution swept the Anglo world, rather than providing areas of resistance, these ancient institutions instead appeared, overnight, absurd. Absurd, out-dated, un-democratic, backwards, oppressive and illegitimate. As a result, all had to be swept away.
Which brings me to my second reason: the political structure. In order to do its work, the Liberal Revolution had to assault the then-existing sources of traditional authority. In the U.S., with its weak executive, divided legislature, a real federal structure that requires 50 battles on one issue if the issue is a state issue (and most are) and a largely independent Federal judiciary who, while obviously the strongest of the branches, they can (and have) their jurisdiction to reach decisions on certain matters stripped of them by Congress. In other words, while the Liberal Revolution was still powerful enough to reshape the country, its political effect has been diffused as it passed through the U.S.’ unique political system, a system designed to prevent wholesale change quickly.
In the U.K, however, the executive arises from the legislature. In fact, the executive is the executive precisely because the Prime Minister commands a majority (usually outright, sometimes in coalition) in Parliament. The judiciary is much weaker, as it has no power to expressly overrule Parliament. The result was that the Liberal Revolution seized complete control of the political levers of power in a flash and were able to completely remake the nation in a matter of a few years. While lingering social views and mores, as well as institutional tradition, slowed the revolution in some areas of British life, it never stopped them. As a result, take a look at the U.K. today. Where do those traditional sources of authority stand?
The Church of England is a joke, its bishops retain no real authority, moral or otherwise. Lords has been abolished. The Crown is not only powerless (or, to be more precise, it is convinced of its powerlessness—as I said last night I believe that the Crown retains more power than it realizes and that, properly exercised, such power would be backed by the British people) it feels itself beholden to the dictates of the new liberal order or face its own destruction, the Common Law has given way to E.U. Civil Law, ancient counties have been abolished in favor of new geographic administrative regions that retain no place in the hearts of men and retain no independent power, the police—once the envy of the world—are now reduced to a worldwide joke.
All of this has been possible due to the extreme power of the central government of the U.K. Relatively speaking, the Prime Minister of the U.K. is many times more powerful than the President of the United States. If the PM needs legislation he can, by definition, have it. If the President needs legislation, he has to ask 425 petty lords for permission.
An even better example of the transformative power of the Liberal Revolution mixed with the Parliamentary system is the late, great nation of Canada, which was transformed into a totally different nation under one Prime Minister, Trudeau. All of modern Canada is a creation of Trudeau and his Liberal Party.
For these reasons, the Liberal Revolution has been able to fully implement its program in the U.K, while in the U.S. it still faces a good deal of popular and—in places—authority-driven resistance to its dictates.
Thus, it is the British man—or to be more specific, the U.K version of the villainous American White Straight Man—who is now facing the real-world consequences of the full imposition of modern liberalism and cultural Marxism. Thus, he is the first to see the mortal danger he is in and the first to begin the stirrings of a fight.
Eventually, American men will be in the same position, but not quite for a while yet I think. For now, it is the duty of American White Nationalists to watch Britain with exceeding attention—to learn by example, to be ready for that day—a day which has been hastened by the Gods-sent victory of Lord Obama of Oak Park—when American men start looking around them and thinking: Perhaps we should fight back?