The Gnonion

Bryce found this superb thing. A sample (but don’t miss out on the rest):

EARTH — In a seemingly unstoppable cycle of carnage that has become tragically commonplace throughout the biosphere, sources confirmed this morning that natural selection has killed an estimated 38 quadrillion organisms in its bloodiest day yet. […] “What we’re seeing here is the work of a hardened, practiced killer,” said Yale University evolutionary biologist Richard Prum … “It is painfully clear this slaughter was perpetrated by a force that holds zero regard for the value of life” …

In what many are calling its most grotesque tactic, the killer appeared to single out the most vulnerable organisms — particularly the young and the physically weak — for its murderous rampage, slaughtering them without mercy as other members of their species fled in panic. Reports indicated those who escaped the carnage were left with no choice but to try to move on with their lives and survive even as the ruthless killer continued stalking them. […] Virtually no species was unaffected by yesterday’s killing spree, experts stated. […] “This is the work of a killer without empathy, without conscience,” said Jyotsna Ramjee, a University of Calcutta zoologist who confirmed that the day’s death toll was the largest on official records dating back to 1859, when the perpetrator was first identified.

January 30, 2015admin 4 Comments »
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Oil Pulse (II)

Given two finite natural commodities, one a consumable energy resource undergoing accelerating absolute depletion, the other an indestructible precious metal, there can be no question about the fundamental trend of price divergence, surely? Except, apparently there can. Pure reason (or principled intuition) fails once again:

Oil01

The world seems determined to thrash us into empiricism.

(Via.)

If there is a trend, it shows up more persuasively in the erratic sequence of consistently-escalating negative oil price shocks.

January 30, 2015admin 19 Comments »
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Sentences (#6)

From a dear friend, whose anonymity I would protect with my life. On the phenomenon of fertility panic among late 30s (early 40s!) childless professional women in the West:

This is an educated person with a PhD, they know better than some teenager in the middle ages.

[Discuss.]

January 29, 2015admin 31 Comments »
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Dazed and Confused

The first stage of the NRx master-plan — coaxing our “perceived enemies” into the consummation of their howling insanity — now seems to be approaching completion.

If leftist moral-political axioms were an argument, these (dazzlingly white*) guys might have one.

* Perhaps the funniest part of all this, it’s only a matter of time before they’re chaited by the all-devouring lunacy they align with.

ADDED: The New Inquiry piece helpfully fnorded (+) by laofmoonster.

January 29, 2015admin 69 Comments »
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Quote note (#147)

The ‘Davoisie’ can’t imagine that there’s anyone who doesn’t secretly think they’re right, argues Walter Russell Mead. It’s educational, therefore, to take seriously the thought-processes of an emblematic figure from outside the ‘Davos box':

Germany will not, Putin may well believe, find a way to turn the euro disaster around. The south will continue to fester and stew under an increasingly hateful and damaging system. Germany will also not be able to turn the Balkans into an orderly and quiet garden of Nordic and Teutonic virtues.

The key to Putin’s thinking is that he is betting less on Russian strength than on German and therefore Western weakness. In opposing the consolidation of a German Europe, he is betting on German failure more than he is betting on Russian success. The goal of Russian policy in Ukraine, for example, is not to create a new Ukraine in Russia’s image. It is not to conquer Ukraine –but to demonstrate that the East is indigestible. Germany cannot save Ukraine or organize Ukraine. It doesn’t have the money, the military culture or the political skills to convert this particular sow’s ear into the silk purse of a North Atlantic market democracy. Germany cannot save Ukraine when the price of oil is at $100 per barrel; it cannot save Ukraine when the price of oil is $25 per barrel.

But if Germany cannot save Ukraine at any price of oil, it also cannot reform Greece, Italy and Spain at any value of the euro. Putin doesn’t see his job as one of building up a powerful force to counter a rising Germany. He sees his job as being able to take advantage of the coming failures and catastrophes of what he believes to be the grandiose and unsustainable Western project in Europe.

The positioning, at least, makes sense. (And Greece looks likely to play along.)

January 28, 2015admin 13 Comments »
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Oil Pulse

Given the price flatline over the half-century to 1973, it’s not easy to be confident that the market has settled into a steady rhythm, but the investment side of the oil business certainly seems to have:

Oil00

(Via.)

Something like two decades of low energy prices ahead, if the established pattern is prolonged. There’s either a valuable futurist building-block there, or a provocation for futurological discussion.

January 27, 2015admin 34 Comments »
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Populism

Political categories — however plausible they look on paper — quickly dissolve into senseless noise when applied to modern historical reality, unless they foreground populism as the critical discriminating factor. Furthermore, populism is for all practical purposes already national populism, irrespective of ideological commitments to the contrary, since super-national popular constituencies exist only in the feverish brains of Utopian intellectuals. The Syriza victory in Greece is making all of this extraordinarily graphic:

Ushering in the new era, Alexis Tsipras, the prime minister-designate, announced that he would not be sworn in, as tradition dictates, in the presence of Archbishop Iernonymos but would instead take the oath of office in a civil ceremony. At 40, he becomes the country’s youngest premier in modern times. […] The leftist, who surprised Greeks by speedily agreeing to share power with the populist rightwing Independent Greeks party, Anel, is expected to be handed a mandate by president Karolos Papoulias to form a government later on Monday. Earlier, Panos Kammenos, Anel’s rumbustious leader, emerged from talks with Tsipras lasting an hour saying the two politicians had successfully formed a coalition. […] “I want to say, simply, that from this moment, there is a government,” Kammenos told reporters gathered outside Syriza’s headquarters. […] “The Independent Greeks party will give a vote of confidence to the prime minister, Alexis Tsipras. The prime minister will go to the president and … the cabinet makeup will be announced by the prime minister. The aim for all Greeks is to embark on a new day, with full sovereignty.”

Anyone who thinks it odd that Marine Le Pen and Slavoj Žižek are both firm supporters is missing the picture entirely. As Žižek remarks:

This is our position today with regard to Europe: only a new “heresy” (represented at this moment by Syriza), a split from the European Union by Greece, can save what is worth saving in the European legacy: democracy, trust in people, egalitarian solidarity.

That’s what the Left means. Construct your ideological spectrum accordingly.

Continue Reading

January 26, 2015admin 58 Comments »
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Chaos Patch (#46)

(Open thread, links)

NRx doesn’t vulgarize to a denunciation of Cultural Marxism (1, 2, 3, 4, 5 …). Yes, ‘Duh!’, but well worth making explicit. Widening perspectives in time and space. “[T]he Reactosphere [is] an Illiberal University System.” Against critical thinking (and response). On the holiness problem. A thoughtful appraisal of Neoreaction (1, 2), but I’m reserving judgment on this. Terminal-phase feminism. Fragged Friday. Mitrailleuse off-blog channels. Meta-masters (1, 2, 3).

“Things without boundaries rapidly become unthings.” (This is also good.)

A few of the more notable aftershocks following the Paris massacre, from two generations of Le Pens (this is better), Malcolm Pollack, and the Anarcho-Papist. No go zones? A wide-angle view. Our interesting times are getting more interesting. The Saudi king is dead. The interim successor “has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, and at many times cannot remember his own name.” ISIS made its move just in time. (Chaos, right?) An analysis of Saudi oil politics. Then back to France (sort of). Auster holds up well.

Venezuela, don’t laugh (related).

The Duck at Chateau Heartiste. Before Yarvin was Moldbug (from 1995). A Scott Alexander no-like list. The long culture war (and a more conventionally humanistic account). Broken democracy. The value of independent corroboration.

Unamused at work. Gregory Hood on MLK. Bookishness is over-rated. On Guillaume Faye on sex. The Economist tip-toes towards reality. Hope for Wikipedia?

January 25, 2015admin 35 Comments »
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Nightcrawler

nightcrawler00

All the stuff everyone else is saying is right. The Lou Bloom character is a creation of sheer genius, and Jake Gyllenhaal’s performance in the role is beyond superb. The movie edges right up to the boundaries of the horror genre, and is also savagely humorous. Nihilism can produce high art, when it’s done right.

Nightcrawler approaches the topical subject of the relationships between the media, business, and law enforcement in a way that eludes conventional pieties. It deserves NRx endorsement just for that. In its darkness are strung subtle threads of possibility, in the working out of abnormal but powerful imperatives — of a supremely cynical kind — comparable in their diagonal subversiveness to a re-animated Scottish Enlightenment on ketamine, with all progressive hope burnt out so radically it doesn’t even register as a question.

These impulses are avatars of what is coming out of the collapse — tough, consummately disillusioned, and exploratory things.

January 24, 2015admin 5 Comments »
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Anti-Greer

Mix this with the Archdruid Report, and you begin to get why the world is so confusing. One of the crucial defenses of the term ‘Neoreaction’ — and thus an argument for clinging to it despite all frustrations — is its intrinsic orientation to grasping both of these perspectives at the same time. (Do that without time-spirals, and you’ve come up with something I’ve yet to consider.)

January 23, 2015admin 17 Comments »
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