Archive for February 14th, 2014

Undiscovered Countries

After (re)reading Adam Gurri’s critical analysis of the core problem of Neoreaction (a tragedy of the political commons), read the surgical response by Handle. The calm intelligence on display from both sides is almost enough to drive you insane. This can’t be happening, right? “In a way, it’s a bit sad, because I can guess that Gurri’s article will be the zenith and high-water mark of coverage of neoreaction which means it will only get worse from here on in.” Enjoy the insight while it lasts.

My own response to Gurri is still embryonic, but I already suspect that it diverges from Handle’s to some degree. Rather than defending the ‘technocratic’ element in the Moldbug Patchwork-Neocameral model, I agree with Gurri that this is a real problem, although (of course) I am far more sympathetic to the underlying intellectual project. Unlike Gurri — who in this crucial respect represents a classical liberal position at its most thoughtful — Moldbug does not conceive democracy as a discovery process, illuminated by analogy to market dynamics and organic social evolution. On the contrary, it is a ratchet mechanism that successively distances the political realm from feedback sensitivity, due to its character as a closed loop (or state church) sensitive only to a public opinion it has itself manufactured. As the Cathedral expands, its adaptation to reality progressively attenuates. The result is that every effective discovery process — whether economic, scientific, or of any other kind — is subjected to ever-more radical subversion by political influences whose only ‘reality principle’ is internal: based on closed-circuit social manipulation.

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February 14, 2014admin 15 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Neoreaction