Review: The Long March Toward Separation

The Long March Toward Separation

Robert T. Burnham, who blogs at The New Heretics, wrote an essay for the 2009 TOQ secession competition called “The Long March Toward Separation.” Like the Paul Kersey essay, The Long March was a close runner up, and has been included in the Fall 2010 issue of TOQ. It also resembles Kersey’s entry in that Burnham spends an inordinate amount of time on historical forecasting.

This essay can be divided into four parts: an examination of extant models of racial secession, a critique of the existing models, a prognosis of the racial future, and a sweeping conclusion.

The Existing Models

As with Michael O’Meara and Paul Kersey, Robert Burnham takes the famous exchanges on secession in the 1990s between Rabbi Mayer Schiller, Michael Hart, Richard McCulloch, and Sam Francis as his starting point. He broadly agrees with McCulloch’s critique of Hart, but generally dismisses their proposals as unviable. He also claims to find merit in several of Francis’s arguments.

Critique

Burnham doesn’t spend much time analyzing any of the essays above. Instead, he quickly launches into his critique of the existing models of secession, which goes something like this:

– The Enlightenment model of liberal capitalist democracy is collapsing. The current models of White separatism lack a philosophical, ideological, or religious basis upon which an alternative vision of Western society can be constructed.

– The models that do exist are purely negative and do not offer a positive vision of an alternative social order.

– The West is now on its death bed because of its fidelity to its own pathological philosophies.

– The postmodern future won’t be a return to pre-Enlightenment traditionalism.

– The current models of White separation are based on a utopian vision and an abstract model that would be cleanly implemented. Whatever emerges from the wreckage of the existing political order, however, is likely to evolve organically and through incremental stages.

– White Nationalists take for granted an unlikely degree of White unity in their secession scenarios. Many Whites are unlikely to go along with White Nationalists and could even resort to violence to resist them.

– It is naive to assume that racial and ethnic cleansing will be accomplished peacefully.

– White Nationalists are guilty of putting all non-Whites into the same box of “The Other” when in reality our ability to coexist with non-Whites (and with each other) varies across populations.

– White Nationalists tend to ignore political reality. They ignore the characteristics in the White population which do not conform to their ideological presumptions.

– Whiteness alone is an insufficient basis upon which to create a White ethnostate.

– White Nationalists downplay the geographical dispersion of non-Whites across America. In other words, it is a mistake to assume that all Hispanics are in the Southwest, or all blacks are in the Black Belt.

– White Nationalists treat non-Whites as passive actors. In fact, the actions of non-Whites will be the most likely catalyst toward separatism.

These are some very persuasive criticisms. I happen to agree with almost all the points made above. In particular, I agree with Burnham’s observation that no clean abstract plan of racial partition will ever be implemented.

Instead, White separatism will evolve organically within regions and states, and any ultimate partition of America will reflect a million little choices made by White families, not any abstract ideal of “Whitemanistan” dreamed up by White Nationalist intellectuals.

Prognosis

After criticizing the existing models of racial secession, Robert Burnham next tries his hand at predicting the future, a far more dangerous enterprise. He sees a dire future for Whites just over the horizon.

– The Enlightenment model that has guided the West since the late eighteenth century will collapse.

– America will be gutted by its hostile alien elites. The cultural and economic rot will eventually result in the fragmentation of the country and the loss of power by the existing elite.

– We are entering a historical period of dissolution.

– The federal government will become so gridlocked and incompetent that its enormous powers will start to devolve back upon the states and cities. This will contribute to the centrifugal forces of national disintegration.

– Whites will be thrown back on their own resources. In particular, Whites will start to privatize many of the functions of the state, namely, education and security, as the public sectors fails to deliver quality services.

– America will fragment racially and culturally long before any future separation.

– The declining federal government, swamped with debt, incompetence, and animated by hostility to Whites, will naturally inspire secessionist movements in the Heartland.

– Whites will coalesce under siege, or they will perish.

– Nativist movements abroad and at home will reinforce each other and create a synergy that will transform the political mainstream.

– The belligerency of non-White racial grievance groups will antagonize Whites to the breaking point.

– After they reach sufficient numbers, Hispanics will make ethnonationalist claims on parts of America. Jews will continue their hostile cultural war on the White majority. Blacks will consolidate into dysfunctional ghettos, which will gradually fall under thug rule, that will remain raw sores on American civilization. Muslims could possibly create tight religious/ethnic enclaves.

– Whites will remain passive and indifferent to their decline. They will retreat further into the private sphere. Miscegenation and other factors will erode our numbers and eat away at the White majority.

– If Whites ever do react to their racial decline, it will be on a piecemeal basis, not an instant, transformative embrace of White Nationalism.

Again, there isn’t much to argue with here. Burnham projects a future that rings true. If present trends continue, I can easily see America declining in such a way. Still, I think this is the worst possible scenario. As an optimist, I think Burnham is painting too dire of a portrait here.

Conclusion

The ultimate conclusion of this article is that the collapse of Western civilization is inevitable. There is nothing that can be done to stop it. Whites could eventually react to their decline, a distinct possibility, but their response will probably be too little too late.

Whites should “prepare the ground” for creating a new pro-White civilization out of the wreckage of the West. Burnham believes that developing ways for Whites to thrive in this post-apocalyptic environment should be the “primary focus” of White Nationalist activity. He sees a world in which White microstates naturally evolve out of the existing state system.

The impersonal forces of history will do all the heavy lifting.

Criticism

The weakness of this essay lies in its prescription: all is lost and there is nothing that can be done. That is highly questionable. I don’t think Whites will passively exit the stage of history. Even if White Nationalists fail to construct a viable movement, it is clear that ordinary White people will still lash out against the system in other ways, and their energy could easily be channeled in a more pro-White direction.

No means are proposed here to advance the ideal of White secession. The course of history could possibly lead to something like a White microstate, but such a tepid response from Whites is unlikely to produce that result. Burnham chooses to stand on the firmer ground of historical forecasting and analyzing/criticizing the obvious flaws in the existing secessionist models.

In doing so, he avoids taking the risk of proposing a solution, which is the hardest and most desperately needed part of advocating secession. Michael O’Meara’s solution has obvious flaws, but “the methods of Connelly and Pearce” is still a plan. I think a better plan is needed, but Robert Burnham doesn’t provide one, and neither does Paul Kersey.

If there is “intellectual work” to be done within the White Nationalist movement, it is clearly in the area of means, not ends. There is widespread agreement on the ends of pro-White political activity, a White ethnostate, but we still lack a realistic strategy and the tactics necessary to actualize our goals.

Verdict: A lot of merit in the critique and prognosis. More thought should have been given to the solution.

About Hunter Wallace 9528 Articles
Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Occidental Dissent

23 Comments

  1. The path seems clear to me. We must, each of us, take the small risk of being socially ostracized and reach out to the whites closest to us and form small communities of trust. Similar to a network of help people might organize in the event of a natural disaster. Just get people to open up and begin to openly discuss the problems we face. Clearly the “white revolution” is the wrong path to take. The mainstream media should be our greatest recruitment tool. Make sure those you can talk to are made casually aware of the implications of the growing number of anti-white incidents. Whites with children may be the most willing to listen. Avoid the loudmouths and those predisposed to extremism. The stormfront crowd is not an asset at this point, if at all.

    Just my two cents.

  2. Hunter: My two cents is that we have flogged the problems to death. I think we should ONLY focus on solutions, and hammering out the possibilities. Just as I think we should politely disregard the destroyers/deconstructionists/nay-sayers. They have offered us plenty of feedback, and important critiques. Now that time has passed though. We should be 100%, like a laser, on answers, both small and big. The time to rearrange deck chairs is over, and we should politely suggest so to others, and start focusing on securing the lifeboats for our people. This comes from a guy who loves reading dystopian fantasy/science and criticizing as much or more than the next guy who spends too much time at the keyboard.

    Mike

  3. “…we have flogged the problems to death. I think we should ONLY focus on solutions, and hammering out the possibilities.”

    But it will take a few courageous WN’s to break through to the outside world first. The online community is so cloistered from the reality of life for most whites that, after prolonged exposure to it, it’s virtually impossible to relate to unaware whites in a meaningful way. The scales need to be removed from their eyes first.

    Attempting to warn them of the imminent danger they face while the vast majority of the white world simply staggers along, mute captives to the barrage of anti-white hate propaganda they are subjected to daily, doesn’t work.

    Target the media. The stranglehold the YKW’s have on all of the media must be broken–one cable station, film studio, newspaper, publishing house at a time. Propagandized whites need to see and hear explicit (subtlety presented–at first) WN arguments spread across the landscape all day, every day until we’ve got their undivided and enthusiastic attention.

  4. I think ideas like the Northwest Republic have some merit, but the people who start them are invariably cranks.

    Check out the Free State Project. It is a bunch of libertarians collecting signatures. They have 10450 signatures so far. When they get to 20,000, the whole lot of them are going to move to New Hampshire and start politicking. They currently have 866 already living there, and they are running for low level political office.

  5. No one here ever talks of a Herzl strategy. In a nutshell: Create an increasingly anti-white (of course, Herzl would want anti-semitism) enviroment,at the same time organise your in-the-making people. Whites have not been attacked enough to know who they are. c

  6. Mr. Wallace,

    Being new to your site, I’ll beg your pardon if this idea has already been dissected and discarded within the commentariat. But the path from our current descent into some semblance of light and air seems obvious to me. We must market to whites with a product to which they are potentially receptive. Sadly, to my perpetual dismay, white nationalism is not going to sell. I believe our people will willingly perish before they purchase it. But they are desperate for a generic knock-off. They know on some level that their civilization is in mortal danger. They want a solution, they just don’t want to be called consumers of “racism.” And this is what we should sell them.

    I believe secession could be sold to a great many of our people on a political basis. Right/Left, Republican/Democrat, or whatever proxy shrewder minds may contrive. It should be presented under the same banner that Jefferson flew the first time around:

    “When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another …”

    Offer this separation without “hate” or malice. Simply a peaceful “non-racist” parting of the ways between liberals and conservatives. Each has their own valid ideas on how to run a country. Each people should have the right to pursue these goals under a national umbrella of like-minded citizens. We don’t even need to insult the left to get away from them–flattery will suffice just as well.

    The “Right” country–even without a word of race mentioned–would begin life 85% white, and then voluntary migration would commence full-scale. Our country would offer no affirmative action, no “hate crimes,” no free lunches or food stamps, no tolerance for gangs or violence, and absolutely no illegal immigration–or legal non-white immigration for that matter (this being stated sotto voce). With a multi-cult, anti-white, open-border welfare state as a neighbor it seems highly likely that our “diverse” population would soon become willing legal emigrants–to our chagrine I’m sure. Likewise, white former multicultists would begin to trickle into our asylum offices seeking refuge from the anti-white violence and discrimination that would be endemic to the soon-to-be banana republic on our border. Over time we would get even more white, while they would…well, who the hell really cares?

    While still unlikely–as are all of our hopes for a white ethnostate where our children can live in peace–this can be sold. When you mention it to mainstream conservative whites, you will find them often giving you an enthusiastic “Hell yes!” rather than the standard unblinking bovine gaze of incomprehension received when one mentions white nationalism.

    At any rate, if this idea has been deconstructed brick by brick previously here I apologize. I simply see no other path.

  7. There will be no racial separation. Whites are hopelessly dependent on non White manual labor. Non Whites do nearly all of the dirty work in White civilizations: how many Whites do you know who are trashmen, or work in a meat processing plant, in all kinds of factories, landscaping, farm labor, even at the post office? Also, since millions of Whites now live in inhospitable climates (very hot, or tropical, etc) they could not survive there without the labor of non Whites since they sit inside all day in air conditioning while the non Whites do much of the necessary manual labor to keep the society functioning at a basic level.

    It has been this way in civilization for thousands of years. Whites founded high civilizations and they all decline the same way – Whites bring in hordes of non Whites to do all of their boring and routine manual labor and over time the laboring non White hordes end up replacing Whites demographically.

    It is that simple.

  8. Porter: Something that comes to my mind every time I hear talk of modern secession is what would happen to Federal assets – especially military bases – in the seceding region. I’m not familiar enough with the position of the secessionists to know their take on the issue, but I do know the Feds will NEVER just allow people to “opt out” without killing them, most especially in regions with military assets worth billions of dollars. Do you think, for example, they would willingly abandon B-2s or nuclear weapons facilities? And as we know they won’t, and even if part of the nation could secede, do you trust the Jews and Negroes on your borders with weapons like that when their society starts to collapse? And how could you ever keep them out? Once their policies destroy whatever portion of the nation they retain they’ll do what parasites always do – move on to the next host. And they’ll come in greater numbers than ever, and no matter where in the current US the White Nation lies (excepting, MAYBE, Alaska) no fence we could muster would keep the hungry horde out.

  9. Porter: Something that comes to my mind every time I hear talk of modern secession is what would happen to Federal assets – especially military bases – in the seceding region. …

    Kinda harkens back to Ft. Sumter in Charleston Bay, April 1861.

  10. Exactly. My belief is that, first, secession will never be sanctioned without political dominance of the current Federal government (which would almost make it pointless), and second, that the current Federal government has the capability to utterly crush any insurgency. We play softball now with the insurgents in the Middle East in order to maintain some semblance of the moral high ground for political purposes, but if the existence of the Feds was threatened on the home front I’ll bet the coddling and restraint would go out the window fast. Even if a violent revolution were in play – and I definitely don’t consider it to be – any ‘revolutionaries’ would have to contend with violent Negroes and Mestizos opposing them.

  11. Elijah,

    I have no doubt whatsoever that dissidents chatting in late 80s Ukraine (or you may substitute any other former Soviet republic) posed the same question you just did. “Do you think they will just let us go??”

    And I don’t expect that any political actors will willingly “abandon” anything. My thesis is that a peaceful political separation could be negotiated. Or in its absence that internal rot or economic cataclysm will do the work that men of good faith will not. Bear in mind, the left and its myriad constituencies hate us. Passionately. This could and should be used to our advantage. The point would be to foment at least some receptivity from the left as well for a peaceful separation. Would this be without monumental obstacles, upheaval, and violence? Of course not: some of which you mention, many others you don’t. Is it preferable to our present trajectory of dispossession followed by extinction? You tell me.

    As to your subsequent points, let us pray we come to face them, for they are all ex post facto. Though I’d relish the opportunity to ponder a Camp of the Saints scenario from a nearly all white country which has just barely survived multiculturalism. Unwelcome hordes have been repulsed in the past and could be again. As it stands now however, the “saints” are here in our living room.

  12. As an aside, there’s a book entitled “Ukraine and European Security” By Tor Bukkvoll. It has a section describing precisely how the division of former soviet military assets took place. Peacefully.

  13. Porter: You make your points well, and I’m not hostile to the idea in the slightest, but the reality of the modern world and the political and cultural climate in America make secession nearly unthinkable to me.

    I don’t have the perspective to address the breakup of the Soviet Union directly so I will reserve direct comment, but certain factors in the US lead me to suspect the situations are not comparable. No one alive today has any memory of significant warfare on the mainland, the previous secession attempt was put down violently with a much smaller Federal government, Federal infrastructure is inextricable from the States, losing territory would undermine the US’s position as a superpower, there is no region in the US with any ‘legitimate’ claim to independence or self-determination in the eyes of the people, muds and liberals infest every State and region to the point I feel the Northwest, Southwest, Southeast, and Northeast are off the table, and I cannot envision the Feds abandoning the heartland peacfully or voluntarily, etc etc

  14. As the Federal government loses the ability to carry out its functions, the states, counties, cities and individuals will take up the slack, or not. Sort of a rapid evolutionary process under high environmental stress. It’s not a matter of declaring independence, but of accepting it.

  15. Military bases: remember BRAC. The feds already have a precedent for abandoning even previously important bases and facilities (e.g., Long Beach and Philadelphia naval yards).

    Operationalizing a White consciousness requires “encouragement” from the French “coeur” or “heart”. We must give heart to our neighbors and we do this by merely discussing these goals in public. Do not harangue or bore them to death with endless badgering over TJQ etc. As Hunter mentioend last week, we merely need to make these thoughts acceptable by “referent” power – legitimate because respectable people hold them.

    “Say it and they will come” as it were.

    Believe me – the Sheople are crying out for leadership as they already know what to do but are afraid even to speak it. We must speak it for them.

    Encouragement.

  16. Be Realistic: I remember a time not that long ago when whites did all of that work. There are still some places way up north or in small towns where they still do. We had to pay them a little more than we pay the Mexicans now, but somehow we survived.

  17. Be Realistic,

    I’ve lived in the South my entire life. I can assure you that you are deluding yourself if you believe that Whites in the South live like parasites upon a black working class. That’s the funniest thing I have heard all day.

    Go find a black construction worker around here. I have plenty of working class White friends who bust their ass all day logging, processing timber, roofing, working as construction laborers and mechanics. They cut their own grass, fix their own toilets, take out their own trash.

    Try circulating with people before you judge them.

  18. Burnham pretty much has it pegged, but I still think the way to go is sloganeering and campaigning for secession of the individual states, [i]in the meantime[/i]. It’s pretty obvious that the federal gov’t’s slack will be taken up by the states, so that’s what we should prepare for. Once it becomes clear that such a thing is either possible or inevitable, all of the racial indoctrination will begin to evaporate. This will happen as people begin to feel more empowered AND more threatened. By the time all of this comes about, of course, we may collect about half of the current states.

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