Yuval Levin is deeply concerned that our hostile Jewish elite has ceased to be respected and accepted as legitimate by the public. It is using the institutions it has captured through the meritocratic system to express and signal its own virtue rather than to govern in the public interest which has created the mounting resentment that has led to populism.
“What does it mean to live in a populist age? Above all, it means that a broad swathe of the public is deeply skeptical about the merit and legitimacy of the people in power throughout our society. And without question, the United States and much of the rest of the West are now in the midst of such a crisis of legitimacy. …
Such claims would be much more persuasive if they were rooted in an institutional ethic that promised restraint, formation, and responsibility, and so set about advancing clearly defined institutional goals in ways explicitly intended to demonstrate trustworthiness. This would mean doing more to subsume individual ambition to institutional ambition and directing it accordingly. It would mean enabling and expecting the people who populate key institutions in our politics, economy, and culture to pursue status and prominence by working within those institutions — by advancing their aims and embodying their ethics — rather than in the vast open space of the larger society by standing atop the institutions and signaling their virtue. And it would mean understanding each institution as giving its participants a place, a role, and a set of relationships rooted in their need for formation.
The way to take on the crisis of legitimacy we now confront, in other words, is to recover a conservative institutionalism. It is, in this sense, a project to which the Right has a lot to offer. But in our time it is also a project that demands a lot from the Right in particular, because today’s political Right threatens to become an anti-institutionalist conservatism, which is an inherently incoherent and dangerous political force.
It is not hard to see why the Right has grown hostile to key American institutions. The elites who populate those institutions fail to make a persuasive case for themselves. They often do not merit respect. But conservatives must look for ways to fight for those institutions rather than against them — to reform them, to repopulate them, to redirect them, and when necessary to replace them, but not to imagine that our society could do without them.
Today’s populism is understandable in light of the crisis of legitimacy we confront. But it must be seen more as a symptom of the problem than as a solution to it — a sign that new thinking and action are needed, but not an example of what those should look like. Even at its very best, populism is a demolition crew. And demolition crews perform essential work, but it is generally preparatory work. It must be followed by the work of builders and rebuilders. And that is what we each should seek to be.”
I’m in partial agreement with this article.
There was an Eastern WASP elite which ruled America from the War Between the States through World War II. It controlled the North and by extension the United States. Around the mid-20th century, it was challenged and toppled by an alliance of Jews, Catholics and blacks. The Jews had amassed wealth under capitalism. The urban Catholics and blacks commanded votes. The liberal Protestant establishment couldn’t maintain control of the system and was undermined by its own ideal of fairness after fighting World War II in the name of liberal democracy. This led to our current “meritocratic” elite and all the various problems it has saddled us with today.
There is nothing really “meritocratic” about the current system though. Perhaps it was at the outset but it swiftly transitioned into something more sinister. Jews climbed up the ladder into the American elite, pulled it up behind them and populated it with other Jews far out of proportion to their slice of the American population through sheer nepotism. The American elite is Jewish at its core and has become defined by their peculiar ethnic obsessions whether it is “fighting anti-Semitism” or promoting Israel in a way that was never previously true in American history. Gentiles now rise up into the elite to the extent that they conform to Jewish interests and repudiate their own ethnic interests and those who don’t go along with the program are destroyed. The result of this is a hostile elite that has pathologized the White majority.
Yuval Levin wants our current Jewish elite (and their hanger-ons) to be formed by institutions and to behave more like the WASPs which flies in the face of experience and history. Back on earth, it is growing ever more estranged and hostile to the White majority and emboldened as Christianity declines. The poison of mass immigration, multiculturalism, political correctness, “wokeness,” censorship and so forth is all getting worse. The consequences of having a Jewish cultural elite are multiplying as the bill for it comes due. The backlash is intensifying but is being blocked, channeled and diverted by our Jewish elites down harmless paths. The Trump movement was channeled into corporate tax cuts, normalizing homosexuality and a more intensely Zionist foreign policy. How are conservative Jewish elites going to start being “molded by institutions” rather than pursuing their own interests after what they have done over the past four years?
The system is not going to be reformed. The pressure will continue to build until some crack emerges and it explodes in an unforeseen way. Yuval Levin is right that populism is more a symptom of discontent than a solution to it. Solving the problem requires eliminating the current Jewish elite, dismantling the liberal order which enabled its rise to power and returning to a more tribal form of government where the elite and the masses once again share common affinities. The current liberal experiment of allowing Jews and other aliens to lord it over Whites has been a disaster and it is doubtful whether our civilization will ever recover from it.