Chaos Patch (#13)

For anything other than this (which can accumulate there).

What are the high-priority topics that should be under discussion right now? If ‘high-priority’ is taken to mean hard, long-term, and ultimately decisive (so we should be pushing on with them as soon as possible),  so much the better.

ADDED: CP#13 Topic Summary:
— Academic background of NRx
— Linguists are strongly represented
— “Isn’t the death of the mad scientist one of NRX’s chief criticisms of the Cathedral?” [In certain quarters …]
— What are NRx economics?
— What is to be done with the adminstrators?
— “Toxic memetic outbreaks have been ended quite stably with atrocities.” (Qin Shi Huang)
— “Of Iron and gold and silicon is the metalic god assembling itself, flesh is just burning fuel.”
— The paradox of popularity. (Is it one?)
— “Has Xenosystems run its course?” (Handle pats this weary nag gently on the nose and puts in a call to the glue factory.)
— Pedophilia
— Let’s talk about the Jews.
— Democratic secessionism in Europe
— The return to metaphysics
— “It’s important to make the failures of progressivism stop seeming normal.” (Imaginative fiction has a role.)
— Super-normal stimuli and the exacerbation of vice (a capitalist horror story)
— “How does Cthulhu (god of memes) work and what exactly is it?”
— Sovereignty and ethics
— Action!

June 1, 2014admin 117 Comments »
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117 Responses to this entry

  • NRx_N00B Says:

    It would be interesting to know the proportion of NRx’ers with a Humanities—blatantly undisciplined—background versus those with a Physical Science—vigilant/disciplined—background.

    [Reply]

    Handle Reply:

    I’ve asked around about this before. The proportion of people with strong STEM inclinations or undergraduate degrees is incredible and thus impossible as a mere coincidence. If you add in Linguistics and Philosophy you are describing most first-generationers with just a few outliers.

    [Reply]

    Peter A. Taylor Reply:

    I’m flabbergasted by the linguistics expertise. That absolutely cannot be a coincidence. It’s as if neoreaction is largely a reaction against propaganda, and the people who have an ear for language are the earliest adopters.

    Somebody in the comment at Isegoria also described many the early neoreactionaries as a bunch of engineers with nothing better to do with their time than hang around on economics blogs. That describes me pretty well.

    [Reply]

    nydwracu Reply:

    How much linguistics experience is there? I can’t think of many people there — about as many people there as there are in finance, I think, maybe one or two more.

    spandrell Reply:

    There’s nydwracu, Scharlach and me that I know of.

    Big majority of linguists are leftists though.

    Peter A. Taylor Reply:

    @nydwracu: Maybe my standards are too low. I’m living in an environment where native English speakers don’t really need to be bilingual. Then I start reading Outside In, and an argument breaks out about the number of different levels of tonality there are in some Asian language that I’ve never heard of, and how this compares with Norwegian. Land is a native English speaker living in Shanghai, Spandrell a European living in Japan, IIRC; I can’t even figure out what language your nom de plume is from….

    But to get this back on topic, we have been having interesting arguments about diagnosis. We have made little or no progress on a treatment plan. Cthulhu is slouching toward Jerusalem. What can we field as a blocking force? My Little Pony?

    Antisthenes Reply:

    I’m a linguistics/philosophy student, and I’ve been following the NRx explosion since last year. Curious.

    I was always under the impression that NRxers would be computer science and engineering buffs.

    nydwracu Reply:

    Aaron and pthag. (pthag was the first one to link me to Moldbug, and that was on a linguistics forum, so there’s at least one example of a network effect.)

    The Asia connection is even more interesting…

    Nick B. Steves Reply:

    I’d add Aaron to the list of at least arm-chair linguists.

    [Reply]

    VXXC Reply:

    And what if it’s both?

    [Reply]

    NRx_N00B Reply:

    Judging by “If ‘high-priority’ is taken to mean hard, long-term, and ultimately decisive”—I thought that the answer may hint at the direction and flavor the philosophy may go…

    [Reply]

    fotrkd Reply:

    Isn’t the death of the mad scientist one of NRX’s chief criticisms of the Cathedral?

    [Reply]

    NRx_N00B Reply:

    Muhahaha, I’ve always wondered if a Humanzee hybrid is possible. I bet the Chinese are on it…

    [Reply]

    Bryce Laliberte Reply:

    “Blatantly undisciplined.”

    Latent scientism detected. Science can only be as rigorous as the philosophical concepts which ground it. If you think “non-scientific knowledge” is some kind of “fast and loose” form of reasoning, then you would be forced to admit science is equally “fast and loose.”

    [Reply]

    Antisthenes Reply:

    Agreed. Your posts on semantics in the past have been quite good, looking forward to more.

    [Reply]

    NRx_N00B Reply:

    You’re absolutely correct, some poorly chosen wording—I’d put myself at least a couple of standard deviations to the left of the mean in the verbal IQ distribution of the posters on here. As for my original question: I acknowledge that it is a spectrum best resolved with more than just two categories—two bins, bad idea.

    [Reply]

    nyan_sandwich Reply:

    You are correct in theory, Bryce, but certain kinds of knowledge are vastly easier to ground in good philosophy than others.

    It is vastly less hairy to speculate “the last ten times we did X, Y happened, when we did not do X another ten times, Y did not happen, therefore to make Y happen, we will have to do X” than it is to build some long cantilever-logic way out into metaphysics. You need a really solid foundation and good logical engineering to do the latter, possibly better than anyone has access to, but the former can be build upon the sand, so to speak.

    That said, there is a hell of a lot of very useful and nonobvious knowledge that is “fast and loose” in the sense that it can’t be quantified with “scientific” statistics or at least never was, but is nonetheless much less epistemically risky than most “scientific” knowledge.

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 1st, 2014 at 7:08 pm Reply | Quote
  • Chris B Says:

    Neoreaction economics?

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 1st, 2014 at 7:08 pm Reply | Quote
  • Anomaly UK Says:

    The question that has been bugging me for months is: in any kind of replacement of a failed progressive government, what happens to the rank and file (or, more significantly, the middle management) of the public sector and its accretions?

    From Moldbug, we have this:

    Therefore, the entire present regime, politicians and civil servants and quangocrats and all, except for essential security and technical personnel, should be retired on full pay and barred from any future official employment. Why pick nits? The private sector is full of competent managers. You can import them from America if you need. Don’t make the mistake of trying to sweep out the Augean stables. Just apply the river. (If a concession must be made to modern mores, however, I think this time around there is no need to hang any corpses.)

    That seems impractical in the kind of extreme circumstances that would produce a collapse of the progressive state. But I can’t see another way of neutralising them as an opposition without some atrocity which would have a serious destabilising effect of its own.

    [Reply]

    Konkvistador Reply:

    Toxic memetic outbreaks have been ended quite stabily with atrocities. See elimination of the Cathars.

    Burying of the scholars and burning of the books was a great human tragedy and intellectual loss. Yet here China stands. Had 1000 schools remained intact would China have stood?

    Our problem with this solution isn’t stability or practicality it is morality and naybe wastefulness, lets not pretend otherwise.

    [Reply]

    Anomaly UK Reply:

    Qin Shi Huang was an established hereditary ruler with an effective army, who conquered the other post-Zhou states. A restoration that has the job of picking up the pieces of a democratic collapse is not likely to have an equivalent level of force to rely on. Exterminating 10% of the population would not be viable.

    If the situation is already at the extreme of serious population reduction, that’s a different matter, but I’ve been trying to see a way of getting to a restoration before that kind of total social collapse happens.

    [Reply]

    R7 Rocket Reply:

    Qin Shi Huang was an established hereditary ruler with an effective army, who conquered the other post-Zhou states. A restoration that has the job of picking up the pieces of a democratic collapse is not likely to have an equivalent level of force to rely on. Exterminating 10% of the population would not be viable.

    Qin Shi Huang also had the benefit of sharing the same culture as the post-Zhou states he conquered to re-unify China, Justinian did not. Emperor Justinian’s attempt to re-unify the Roman world was a failure, there was no common culture or ethnicity in Europe.

    Posted on June 1st, 2014 at 8:20 pm Reply | Quote
  • Konkvistador Says:

    Gold vs. Iron, Mammon vs. Ares, Violence vs. Capital

    The unresolved tension, our sin in Gnon’s eyes is not understanding the intersections, contradictions and relatio.s between these two, preferring to pretend either one or the other is ultimate truth when they both approxmate it.

    Iron is not the power of the mob, that is the power of Flesh. Of Iron and gold and silicon is the metalic god assembling itself, flesh is just burning fuel.

    [Reply]

    Alex Reply:

    Of Iron and gold and silicon is the metalic god assembling itself, flesh is just burning fuel

    A line from Jokerman comes to mind.

    caro factum est

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 1st, 2014 at 8:24 pm Reply | Quote
  • RorschachRomanov Says:

    – How to resolve the inherent tension that has always colored the Reactionary vision; namely, presumably it is desirable such that Reactionarism enter the causal matrix of human order, but recognizing the destructive force of popularization, where the zetetic tends to collapse into puerile ideology, how can Reactionarism be embraced without qualitative entropy? This is a question of implementation: can the Dark Enlightenment become more than internet masturbation?

    – The delimitation of the value of economics- along Evola’s contention that capitalism and Marxism are “pseudo-antagonistic,” a secondary question of this or that actualization of a given economic order, the primary being tha value of economy itself. How can we return to the existential conceptualization of “Traditional” societies/civilizations where the axiological import of economics as being essential is/was experienced as “a bad joke.” (Evola)

    – Our “Age” is subsetted within ontologies of exhaustion- the question of nihilism is far from settled…its banalization extended through endless divertissement, but when the orgy is over, mankind may flee from existence, running into extinction with all the veracity of the children of Moses fleeing the Egyptians. All the Viagra in the world cannot cure the Cathedral’s impotence on this matter.

    [Reply]

    nydwracu Reply:

    How to resolve the inherent tension that has always colored the Reactionary vision; namely, presumably it is desirable such that Reactionarism enter the causal matrix of human order, but recognizing the destructive force of popularization, where the zetetic tends to collapse into puerile ideology, how can Reactionarism be embraced without qualitative entropy?

    Is there really a contradiction here? You can have a Catholic state without making everyone study theology, a Nazi state without making everyone read the völkisch authors, a progressive state without making everyone study Lippmann, Bernays, and critical theory, and so on.

    Progressivism popularized to an extent, but mostly it just captured power and then told people what to think when it felt like it.

    [Reply]

    RorschachRomanov Reply:

    I would not go so far as to say there is a “contradiction,” but I am persuaded “tension” is appropriate. In the way of implementation, I should clarify that I have sustainability, post initial implementation, in mind.

    The “state” is necessarily contingent upon, in the empirical and conceptual order, a demarcation between itself and its citizens- a demarcation that is rarely sustained via sheer force but embrace, an embrace in turn contingent upon the notion of the state as possessing or infused with “legitimacy.”

    If nihilism is the ‘ground’ of Modernity, as I believe it to be, we see the two cannot coexist as the latter erodes the former, and even now it seems impossible for man to exist in the absence of his order at least intimating veridicality.

    I fear neocameralism, one proposed solution, would only further the instrumentalization of human relations, indeed, being the old school Reactionary I am, neocameralism strikes me as a kind of prostitution.

    [Reply]

    nydwracu Reply:

    Not so much embrace as the default state of “this is ours and it doesn’t suck enough to be worth the effort to oppose it; now, as long as it doesn’t draw my attention, I won’t pay attention to it, and as long as it doesn’t fuck me over, I won’t do more than complain aimlessly about its flaws”. It’s like ‘school spirit’ in high school or college: you do it when you’re told to, because it’s the easiest option. Embrace implies activity, but most people just don’t give a damn, and accept whatever comes down to them from upstream.

    Posted on June 1st, 2014 at 8:46 pm Reply | Quote
  • Handle Says:

    Has Xenosystems run its course?

    [Reply]

    nydwracu Reply:

    Nah, this is the closest thing to a public forum we have. (The blog-as-public-forum architecture seems to work well; compare LW to SSC.)

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 1st, 2014 at 9:44 pm Reply | Quote
  • Rasputin Says:

    Pedophilia.

    I think this is a fascinating topic that will expose further fault lines in NRx.

    In the UK the BBC is currently engaged in a witch hunt for ‘pedophiles’, both from within its own ranks, and from the wider celebrity community. It is focused on instances of abuse that took place as far back as the late 60’s. It follows in the wake of the revelations about Jimmy Savile (if anyone still doesn’t know about these, happy googling!) and takes in dozens of celebrities, from Rolf Harris to Max Clifford.

    What I find interesting is not the guilt or innocence of the individual celebrities involved – either of pedophilia or sexual assault more generally – but the timescale of the investigation. How it reaches back across time and is in a certain sense similar to calls for reparations for race crimes; how it is a concrete and unfolding illustration of how the standards of the Cathedral today are used to judge its recent past; how the victim is sacred, and in many instances where the defendant was found innocent, the judge still feels the need to say that this doesn’t mean that the allegations were not true…

    Allegations of pedophilia appear to have a special place within the progressive arsenal, and I think some time didn’t thinking through how these function from a realist perspective could prove illuminating on wider issues, as well as potentially unsettling for NRx.

    [Reply]

    RorschachRomanov Reply:

    The Cathedral response to pedophilia is window dressing, a mirage of sorts, a series of false holographs. In fact, a kind of reaction formation, a hiding of actual motives, even where spouting the exact opposite.

    For, the metaethical frame of Progressivism almost always tends towards consequentialism, and it is on these grounds, coupled with the Leftist relativizing of harm to a societal context, such that, in the absence of negative attitudes towards adult-child sexual relations, said harm is profoundly mitigated, the Cathedral is pro-pedophiliac- even if it doesn’t know it.

    The irony here, the always temporally forward Enlightened Leftists, are harboring old manifestations of barbarism.

    Remember the (ancient) Greeks- infanticide and pederasty? Peter Singer would be proud.

    [Reply]

    zhai2nan2 Reply:

    When one dismantles a fairly sexual repressive system like medieval Christianity, it’s not surprising that one gets an increased level of sex crimes against children.

    Well-connected sex criminals seem to enjoy playing with blackmail and blackmailing each other. This seems to have been elevated to an art form by J. Edgar Hoover.

    In 1993, Anthony Summers, in his book Official and Confidential: The Secret Life of J. Edgar Hoover, alleged that Hoover was a child molester and that Hoover was terrified of being blackmailed.

    Of course, Hoover frequently blackmailed others.

    What we may be seeing is a culture dominated by blackmail.

    [Reply]

    scientism Reply:

    The pedophile witch hunts affirm “consent” as the deciding factor in sexual matters and hence support the laissez faire attitude towards sex (“among consenting adults”). If you keep pedophilia in the news, then you give people a clear target for their outrage while you simultaneously push the gay agenda and feminist “rape culture” propaganda, making clear that the latter respect the line the evil pedophiles cross. It’s good to give people something they can be disgusted about while you’re dismantling their disgust response to other behaviour. This strategy likely came about due to conflict among Leftists when they purged pedophile activists from the gay rights movement – i.e., “we need to be clear on ‘consent’ as our message.”

    [Reply]

    RorschachRomanov Reply:

    Excellent analysis…subterranean dastardliness. Give the masses a Scapegoat to incessantly beat, like a piñata, and while this catharsis is in full effect, inject hyper-sexual variance and sexual nihilism into the social order.

    Any cry of “foul” is immediately (inaccurately) deemed a “slippery slope.”

    Couple consequentualism with the instrumentalization of all human interaction, with the only taboo being sexual taboos, with the Scapegoat as mentioned, and NAMBLA tis but a barely existent shade of the Cathedral backed sexual variance to come.

    “Hetero-normativity” will undoubtedly be a hate crime.

    [Reply]

    Orthodox Reply:

    By pedophilia do you mean actual pedophilia, or do you mean what the Cathedral calls “pedophilia,” homosexuals raping 12 year-olds? If you mean actual pedophilia, it isn’t much of an issue. If you mean that most of the time pedophile is used in a news story, it is a code for “homosexual rape of young boys,” then yes, it opens a direct hardline into the Cathedral’s nerve center.

    [Reply]

    Rasputin Reply:

    I mean both, but I am least interested in the aspect you find most crucial ie “homosexuals raping 12 year-olds”. I think that Scientism’s analysis is a good one, and is certainly partially correct. But I think the truth of exactly how pedophilia specifically, as well as sexual assault more generally, fit within the Cathedral inquisition is several layers more complex than a simple strategy of moral-outrage-misdirection. Scharlach wrote a good post on it a while back (http://habitableworlds.wordpress.com/2013/09/13/a-brief-word-on-pedophilia/) but it was relatively underdeveloped. I would be very interested if he were willing to flesh out his thoughts further here…

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 1st, 2014 at 10:24 pm Reply | Quote
  • Chaos Patch (#13) | Reaction Times Says:

    […] Source: Outside In […]

    Posted on June 1st, 2014 at 10:45 pm Reply | Quote
  • Alex Says:

    hard, long-term, and ultimately decisive

    Jews.

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    Can we hold back the super-stimulus for a moment when there are some people NOT running around in circles shrieking?

    [Reply]

    Alex Reply:

    Accelerate!

    [Reply]

    Antisthenes Reply:

    The Jews are our greatest ally.

    [Reply]

    Alex Reply:

    They just don’t know it yet.

    [The rogues at MyPostingCareer have taken to calling NRx ‘Judeo-Reaction’, lol.]

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 1st, 2014 at 11:05 pm Reply | Quote
  • Driftforge Says:

    Issues to resolve:

    Conversion: Apparently we have the same issues as the early church did, without a process.

    Quirks: Differentiation within a hierarchy. Also touches on the economics side — the costs we choose to bear to develop character.

    Beginnings: (Re)establishing the traits that have been pushed out by democracy within society. These are not political in nature, but social. We have a world aching for heroism but having it repressed in them individually. Provide outlets.

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 1st, 2014 at 11:16 pm Reply | Quote
  • fotrkd Says:

    The long-term pros and cons of democratic secessionism in Europe particularly in relation to “The mountains are high, and the Emperor is far away”.

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 1st, 2014 at 11:41 pm Reply | Quote
  • peppermint Says:

    I want to know more about crapademia and ngoistan. This was Moldbug’s assignment to us. I’m not in a position to learn about the informal details about how power works.

    I also want a neoreactionary queer theory. Scharlach just assigned that to us.

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 1st, 2014 at 11:54 pm Reply | Quote
  • RorschachRomanov Says:

    Fair enough- I think you are correct to highlight passivity as an intrinsic feature of the masses, but I suppose this invites the invitation to the question of just what the possible world under discussion is to look like.

    Recognizing the ills and falsities of egalitarianism, have we no more faith in our brethren that they are not more than passive cows, mindless ingesting anything that happens to be edible?

    And, whatever (neo)Reactionary order is envisioned, I think the sustainability of feudalism, for example, an order which lasted for centuries, had less to do with passivity and more to do with its anchoring in a largely Augustinian metaphysic.

    We on the Right need to return to metaphysics and render whatever given manifestation of the flux a secondary analysis.

    [Reply]

    RorschachRomanov Reply:

    This was meant as a reply to nydwracu.

    [Reply]

    nydwracu Reply:

    Potable water comes out of the tap when I turn the thing. Am I a passive cow for turning the thing and not knowing or caring where the water comes from or how it gets to the tap?

    The train comes down the tracks and I buy a ticket and get on. I don’t know what kind of train it is; I don’t know what kinds of trains there are. All I know is that it gets me from here to there. Am I a passive cow for not knowing?

    Some people don’t pay much attention to music. They listen to what comes on the radio and they like it well enough. Are they passive cows?

    Now, if the water turns brown, I’ll start paying attention to where the water comes from and how it gets there; if one model of train turns out to be catastrophically defective but hasn’t been recalled yet due to bureaucratic delay, I’ll start caring about what kind of train it is that I’m about to get on; and if every station on the radio starts playing nothing but Schoenberg, they’ll stop listening to the radio and put some effort into finding music they can stand.

    Here’s where it gets tricky. If the water starts turning brown every Sunday, I’d be pissed at first; but if nothing could be done about it, I’d eventually get used to it. Some places don’t have power every hour of the day; some places don’t have hot water every hour of the day. People get used to it, just as people get used to two-hour commutes or being unable to go outside at night. Eventually it becomes a fact of life.

    This may be one of the reasons why regimes tend to fall as a result of beginning to improve: the failures stop seeming normal.

    It’s important to make the failures of progressivism stop seeming normal. The commutes are long, the schools are hell on earth, the cities are third-world cesspools — and most people accept all these things as facts of life.

    [Reply]

    sviga lae Reply:

    Hence the positive power of fiction and imaginative literature.

    The people grope ever more inarticulately for an ideal, as the language required to express it has been systematically deconstructed.

    The project of elite Brahmin conversion has, as basic prerequisites, the delineation of exactly which sacred cows must be slaughtered, and what degree of approximation to the Millenium can be achieved by their sacrifice. Each day the offerings made to the cows are made with more private circumspection.

    Given the magnitude of the material surpluses that would be made available if sanity reigned again, the project is an attractive one. We need to bridge the imaginative gap, with the accordant first-mover advantage.

    [Reply]

    RorschachRomanov Reply:

    nydwracu:

    While I am sympathetic to your response, I fear it remains cosmetic, inattentive to the meta-issues, at least, without further explication.

    Undoubtedly, man has a near limitless ability to adapt, to survive transforming sordid states of affairs into the bounds of normality, but the greater benefit to humankind is not substituting a hedonically grounded order (progressivism) with one that maximizes hedonic experience with greater efficiency or to greater depth, but of asking the question of the value of survival.

    It is in attempting to answer this question, the axiological question of existence, that the “Left” has always failed abysmally- for when the Marxist dream of economic satiation is brought to fruition (though of course, the pessimism of Jesus is far more realistic: “For ye have the poor with you always”), what then?

    Perhaps mankind will have sunk to such depths, that spoiling in the mud, pigs in an everlasting orgy, will be a sufficient condition to keep the horror show on its tracks, unswerving on our path to extinction.

    It’s witching hour- we are on course for a reckoning. The “capitalist nightmare” of technophilia, and its divorcing mankind from our evolutionary origins, surplus hedonic experience, is the contingent nightmare.

    The metaphysical nightmare is that, to quote R. Scott Bakker, “science rather than God will usher in the apocalypse, directly destroying us by destroying our will to live.”

    The gentle nihilism of Modernity is eroding, giving way to “brutal nihilism,” which offers “perversion in place of pleasure and terror in place of banality” (Michael Gillespie).

    Reactionarism (its adherents, to avoid reification) exists outside the ‘polis,’ in principle as it is, desiring ‘Exit’ concretely, and as we know, Aristotle contended that to so existence one must either be a beast or a god.

    On postulation of atheism, where does that leave us?

    Return of metaphysics as primary, and by extension, theology.

    Theo-Reactionarism.

    [Reply]

    Howard Vaan Reply:

    I’d like to posit Switzerland as a counter-example.

    In some ways it’s clearly a very capitalist country. The banking sector is critical to the economy. It is also reasonably low tax. However, in other ways there are strong elements of progressive ideas in social policies. There are also areas where the government is expected to regulate, provide and subsidise.

    The commutes here are not long or unpleasant. The SBB and regional transport networks, like the ZVV, are subsidised heavily. Public transport here is astonishing in its comprehensiveness and punctuality. It serves the mountain communities and the commuting bankers. Second class cabins are almost as good as first class in some countries.

    No city in Switzerland is a ‘third world cesspool’. Zürich is a leafy, clean and pleasant city. The lake and rivers here are so clean that when they are warm enough, in July and August, they are popular for swimming.

    Are the schools hell on earth? One criticism of the public school system here is that it streams pupils into an academic or a practical stream too early. I don’t think they’re very bad quality though.

    What drives all this? Referendums overrule even international treaties and can be initiated by anyone gaining enough signatures. At the federal level, Switzerland is ruled by a council of seven ministers, chosen from among the main parties in the legislature. This mitigates, but includes, the representation of more extreme parties.

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 2nd, 2014 at 12:48 am Reply | Quote
  • Stirner (@heresiologist) Says:

    Developing solutions to the “Supernormal” stimuli that are quietly eroding civilization.

    They are basically the 7 deadly sins, but made more devastating by modern technology. Our monkey brains are simply not evolved enough to cope.

    Example: ubiquitous availability of online hardcore porn. It is quite possible that for some percentage of kids, they are rewiring their dopamine transmitters for the quick fix pleasures of fapping. As a result, when it comes to real sex, they are either impotent or have other performance issues. How on earth do you put that genie back in the bottle.

    Gluttony? Modern food abundance is designed to trigger dopamine pleasure response far in excess of what we are evolved to cope with. No surprise that the world is growing obese.

    Sloth? Robotics and expert systems are going to hollow out a metric shitload of white collar professional jobs. The prog solution is some sort of basic income, which of course leads to the long term domestication of humans. How do we create the equivalent of “synthetic work” that delivers the satisfaction and sense of accomplishment and empowerment that work can provide?

    If Neoreaction is going to save civilization, there is a great deal of work to do.

    [Reply]

    J Reply:

    This. To what extent is this addressed by unleashing capitalism? Now if one simply wants to create a robo-earth it may be a step in the right direction. Or it may stymie that too. Eroding runway. Are the people least deserving of such technology inevitably the ones to develop it? Is there a way to bootstrap starting out with relatively bare biological discipline/training, that is, learning to use what we have first?

    Reminds me of:

    Der Begriff „Seele“, „Geist“, zuletzt gar noch „unsterbliche Seele“, erfunden, um den Leib zu verachten, um ihn krank — „heilig“ — zu machen, um allen Dingen, die Ernst im Leben verdienen, den Fragen von Nahrung, Wohnung, geistiger Diät, Krankenbehandlung, Reinlichkeit, Wetter, einen schauerlichen Leichtsinn entgegenzubringen!

    [Reply]

    Stirner (@heresiologist) Reply:

    I am very pro-capitalist, but I have the intuition that the challenge is going to be finding ways to curb the capitalist impulse where Supernormal stimuli are concerned.

    I read an article recently about gambling addiction, and how the newest crop showing up at GA meetings are mid-life women. Their downfall? Slot machines that use big data strategies to maximize their gameplay. The slots recognize you based on the casino swipe card, and they can analyse your gameplay patterns to uncover the best reward/failure metric to get you to keep playing. The machines are literally engineered to hack human psychology.

    Again, how the hell do you put that genie back in the bottle?

    [Reply]

    nyan_sandwich Reply:

    Capitalism has been an extremely productive dynamic for us, and may continue to be so, but we have to remember that it is ultimately not serving the interests of civilization or mankind as a whole, it serves the desires of those agents that are productive to it.

    Three problems:

    As noted above, superstimulus divorces desire from interest. Capitalism sides with desire.

    Individual interests often undermine social structures. Capitalism sides with the individual.

    Most importantly, what happens when we stop being useful to capitalism? It stops feeding us, maybe even eats us. Nick Land is OK with this. I am not.

    Lesser Bull Reply:

    As currently constituted, capitalism lacks a sufficient time horizon. Moving women into the workforce as a huge boon in the short run (several decades). Larger, cheaper labor pool and more consumers. But in the long run, now that the birthrates are dropping, its no good.

    tryptophan Reply:

    “This. To what extent is this addressed by unleashing capitalism?” (examples referred to are porn, gambling and gluttony).

    These kinds of externalities are why neocameralism is such a useful model. If the state itself is run for profit then its laws and social ethos will be geared towards the long-term good of its citizens/slaves in the same way that a logical slavemaster wouldn’t want his slaves to be pr0n addicts, obsessive gamblers and gluttons (well…). The conclusion is that the closer a state approximates to the neocameral/formalist ideal the better it will be.

    [Reply]

    Lesser Bull Reply:

    Robotics and expert systems — what’s needed is a return to the concept of extended families, tribes, and even feudal and patron relationships. The highly capable people who would be vastly rich running their automated industries would then have a non-economic reason to support people directly (and a reason to continue to innovate beyond the diminishing marginal returns of additional wealth to themselves)

    [Reply]

    Aeroguy Reply:

    The issue of automation is a critical juncture. Of the three factions I’m most closely alined with the techno/capitalists but I think transhuman/darwinist is a better description. Capitalism doesn’t solve the issue of automation because it is an engine without an equally powerful sense of foresight. Tribalism is laughable because automation would quickly produce Africa with free stuff and eventual alienation. Religion could work if crafted right, a means of social control to curb desire and control behavior so that the productivity yields of automation can be directed away from hedonism.

    Regardless, what must always happen is for the nonproductive to be rendered sterile, otherwise the system will be overrun by nonproductive mouths (also why a religion in use would have to be crafted or tweaked to accommodate this very real reality of living in an automated world). Don’t be fooled by the temporary plateau and decline in population of postindustrial societies, the race for r selection has only just begun. Left to their own devices evolution will take hold and r selection will dominate until you get very efficient breeders who’s population can grow at an alarming rate. Even if the system could outpace the consumption by the unproductive it will be handicapped when competing against systems that sterilize and since warfare is also being automated having surplus population no longer buys victory on the battlefield.

    While religion is needed to carry us there, when we reach the full potential of transhumanism or singularity (both yield a post-human world), we don’t need social conditioning but can instead do direct biomechanical engineering creating various new species that are perfectly adapted for productivity/art/science/math/ect, a whole phylum of life to be filled and all born completely sterile since intelligent life is deliberately engineered from this point on causing continued growth. Orgasms and other pleasure and motivating things can be preserved by redirecting them to better uses since breeding is outdated, such as if they made something beautiful, increased productivity, or contributed to the creation of beneficial next gen species. Including tribalism would probably be a good idea and can be programed in, to the extent that each new generation will take care of the previous generations since the old generations will no longer be of productive use and since the new generation will inevitably face the same fate. The loss of productivity is offset by inhibiting the incentive to not create the generation that will replace you. This sort of tribalism is part of what is needed to make a strong AI friendly.

    Humans are scarcely better suited for civilization than chimps which is why our civilizations suck so hard, but post-humans such as these would for the first time make true civilization. Comparing the civilizations of humans to post-human civilization would be like comparing the sticks chimps use to eat ants with to the Saturn V rocket. However, dominating biology and controlling the path of our own evolution doesn’t free us from Darwin, there will be secession, there will be competition, and the unfit will be culled eventually. Evolution will be accelerated, not ignored.

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 2nd, 2014 at 1:18 am Reply | Quote
  • NRx_N00B Says:

    Ultimately decisive?—is the per-capita-innovation-rate-over-time “blip” really behind us?

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 2nd, 2014 at 1:38 am Reply | Quote
  • nyan_sandwich Says:

    How do we structure this whole thing (NRx) so that we actually have a chance of maintaining the current productive intellectual dynamic as we scale beyond the dunbar limit? How do we structure so that we have a decent chance of being able to exectute productively on any given prescriptive finding that we come across in the future?

    How do we keep the warriors occupied while the priests figure out what to do and what the hell is going on? How do we keep the priests from imposing their intellectually-inclined social technology on the warriors?

    Those are the meta questions. Object level:

    How does Cthulhu (god of memes) work and what exactly is it? What can we learn from historical studies of civilizational dynamics? Can we confirm that we are in a bad place in terms of civilizational dynamics?

    How does one design and deploy high quality social tech? What social tech do we need?

    What maneuvers do we have to do to save our families, communities, nations, and civilizations?

    Very top-level I know.

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 2nd, 2014 at 4:50 am Reply | Quote
  • Hurlock Says:

    Here are two topics which have been troubling me recently and are of fundamental importance.

    First of all did we ever resolve the problems of sovereignty? It’s fundamental to Moldbug’s political theory yet there were a lot of disagreements about his famous maxim “sovereignty is conserved”. I remember there was a massive debate on the topic a year ago, yet I don’t recall it ever being resolved in a satisfactory manner. Even if I am wrong and it was, revising it won’t hurt.
    I have some big issues with Moldbug on this one, but I will not flesh them out now, as I lack time and this comment would turn into a pamphlet. (a hint: I tend to be with Jim on this one)

    Another important topic is, does neoreaction have a proper ethical framework? I mean, I know we are speaking for Gnon, but still, what are our ethics? Natural Law? Deontology? What? Was this discussed before at length? If not, some work in this area wouldn’t hurt.

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 2nd, 2014 at 10:05 am Reply | Quote
  • VXXC Says:

    What needs doing?

    1] Attack. This is positive action, separates doers from shirkers [I mean NRXn panic inducing memetic reversal attack former Progs/Libertarians of NRxn excel at. I for instance can’t do it. I was raised conservative/reactionary.]

    2] Sun Tzu – admit your weaknesses, admit your strengths [which frighten more than progs,
    They Frighten you. Effects over foes=power. it’s frightening. If too frightening admit it
    to self and others. then allow others to do so. Youth for instance. No I don’t mean me.]

    3] That being what now, then what next? I’ve suggested UP– that is Space. We have to offer something to the worlds 2.5 billion young men with limited prospects. Other than watch TV, play games, LARP politics, masturbation. Up and Out/Lure of the Void captures
    the imagination, it’s something to build which is key for men, there’s profits to at least
    be strove after. Colonization is man’s first and best enterprise, from the Dawn of Man
    forward. And it can be sold – space can be sold – without possessing it. It’s limitless.
    And we’ve had the technology for decades. Time to go up.

    Now you could offer King LARP or Wise Genocidal King FAI. Not Friendly at all. But this isn’t a compelling vision you see. And we have LARP and despair now. We already have that.

    We don’t have AI, and we don’t have a King. But we all can look up. That’s been a hot seller with unlimited inventory and no marketing costs sunk in for all time. Those were our first gods. We need to reach for the gods again. They’re within sight. And we can keep chasing them until the end of all men and all men’s devices. It’s not selling anything they don’t want.

    Space. The ultimate America. Over those solar waves lie every promised land.

    ==========================
    PS if you’re going to do in XenoSystems for fucks fukks fuxxs sake please please a better interface next time. Ask the PLA. They’ve got some benched coders at the moment looking to make personal comebacks [DOJ indictments].

    [Reply]

    Puzzle Pirate (@PuzzlePirate) Reply:

    Mars = planet America

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 2nd, 2014 at 10:37 am Reply | Quote
  • Aaron Says:

    The next salvo in the war on brogrammers.

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 2nd, 2014 at 1:20 pm Reply | Quote
  • Kgaard Says:

    What about religion, or spiritual practice? While reaction properly looks backward to better political models, it doesn’t necessarily look backward for better cosmological models. Neoreactionaries do not argue that we should be bringing back leeches as a medicinal tool. Along the same lines, if it’s fair to say that Christian cosmology is worn out, AND it’s fair to say that a properly functioning society benefits from shared spiritual experience, would it not then be a healthy project to define the elements of high-quality, intellectually-palatable spiritual experience in 2014?

    [Reply]

    Contaminated NEET Reply:

    There’s one element of a high-quality, intellectually-palatable spiritual experience that I’m sure of right now: it will never use the words, “high-quality” or “intellectually palatable” to describe itself.

    [Reply]

    Kgaard Reply:

    @ NEET

    Well yeah, not consciously. But if we define spiritual experience as a kind of maximal-joy experience, it will have to be consistent with the cosmology of the times. The rituals will have to make sense. They will have to lead one from the conscious to the unconscious along a logical path — and the symbols for that journey change as the external elements of life change. Joseph Campbell talked about this in Hero of 1,000 Faces. When the Plains Indians got horses, their entire symbology changed (though it took 150 years for the change to come to fruition). That’s how I view the current period: One of symbological flux and turmoil. Artists create new symbologies in parallel with scientists, as scientists present their latest understandings of cosmology.

    So, spiritual experience is going to have scientific and artistic elements. Our problem today is that science has way outpaced the ability of spiritualists and artists to incorporate those advances into ritual. Hence one is left to choose mostly between dead/stale rituals or nothing. (And the “nothing” option leads to porn, video games and drugs.)

    I recognize that this entire line of inquiry may be somewhat orthogonal to the concerns of neoreaction (as one of the respondents on this thread put it). I don’t quite have a response to that. I just think it matters. Perhaps the left is so rabid in its adherence to the tenets of the cathedral precisely because it looked at its existing options (stale christianity or porn/drugs/video games), and decided neither is appealing. Perhaps it is this misplaced spiritual frustration that drives some of the zealous adherence we see to lefty dogma. So, why can’t the right come up with an alternative, updated spiritual-practice paradigm that could fulfill the spiritual needs of cathedralites?

    I’m sure there are traditionalist artists working on this problem right now, actually …

    [Reply]

    Peter A. Taylor Reply:

    Not orthogonal at all. Politics is heavily concerned with how people treat one another; in a well-ordered society, it is downstream of moral education. Religion is likewise concerned with how people treat one another; in a well-ordered society, it provides moral education. See Guenter Lewy’s _Why America Needs Religion_. Lewy is an atheist, as am I.

    http://home.earthlink.net/~peter.a.taylor/lewy.htm

    Lesser Bull Reply:

    You’re on the wrong track. Most successful religious movements are reappropriations of already existing religions,. They also usually aren’t ‘projects.’ The initial believers have to be believers.

    [Reply]

    Kgaard Reply:

    I guess that is a fair point. Let me phrase the question this way: What is spiritual experience going to look like on a floating seastead? These will be new countries in new terrain never before inhabited. Will people be building churches? Buddhist shrines? Yoga centers? Electronic dance halls? Will shared political belief be enough to pull people together and create a real community or will people feel alienated and, as it were, “at sea?”

    I don’t know … maybe this isn’t even neoreaction’s problem. But if the left has (or is) the Cathedral — a phalanx of beliefs that are de facto religious — and if neoreaction is rational, where is the right’s answer to the left’s religious component? If one were to say “the Catholic Church” I don’t think that’s a good answer because intellectually it offers nowhere near the intellectual rigor that neoreaction demands in the political realm.

    [Reply]

    Lou Reply:

    “The Catholic Church” is a horrible answer. From the beginning, the Christian church has been the main expounder of left-wing drivel (or slave morality, as Nietzsche puts it). Secondly, have you seen who the Pope is and what he is doing? Thirdly, in a world where we have identified the existence of a multiverse, monotheism is just silly.

    Lesser Bull Reply:

    Those are great questions. it’s gonna be hard to answer, though, not only because all of us are already committed Christians or committed atheists/anti-Christians (and I think a Jew or two?).

    But without some kind of spiritual matrix to keep the progressivism out, you will get messianic state worship for sure.

    Lou Reply:

    @Kgaard

    I suggest reading On the Genealogy of Morals if you haven’t yet. Hinduism and traditional European religion (Asatru to some) are just two examples of religions that uphold the noble spirit and a natural hierarchy.

    Lou Reply:

    There are plenty of religions out there that can accomodate the neoreactionary worldview. Christianity or any of its offshoots/predecessors ain’t one of ’em. Christianity is an inherently left-wing movement. It really is the original Communism.

    [Reply]

    Kgaard Reply:

    Lou … What are some of these plenty of religions? I can only think of Buddhism, and even there it’s a bit iffy …

    Antisthenes Reply:

    To all those above, including Kgaard, Lou, and Lesser Bull, may I humbly suggest that religious concerns might be completely orthogonal to the aims and character of NRx? Just a thought.

    Lesser Bull Reply:

    You may be right, Antisthenes, but none of us have been discussing religious concerns. We have been discussing sociological concerns.

    Any reality-based polity has to account for religion. Any comprehensive account of the Left has to draw on insights from the sociology of religion.

    nydwracu Reply:

    Just as politics is downstream from religion, religion is downstream from politics. Orthodox Christianity doesn’t seem communist, but it has Putin and Catholicism has Harvard.

    A comparative history of communism seems important here — Konkvistador had an example of an outbreak of communism from Islam.

    Alex Reply:

    in a world where we have identified the existence of a multiverse, monotheism is just silly

    : ß

    [Reply]

    Lou Reply:

    Excellent line of reasoning. I agree completely. If neoreaction does not reject Christianity, then we must, in turn, reject it.

    [Reply]

    E. Antony Gray (@RiverC) Reply:

    @Kgaard

    This is a fallacious line of reasoning unless you are familiar with the breadth of Christian cosmology. If you are limited to some medieval western sources, you are going to be black swanned pretty hard.

    [Reply]

    scientism Reply:

    Most religions undergo a prototypical pattern of evolution. First they are revolutionary movements, usually around one figure (Buddha, Christ, Mohammed), then they take on a proselytising form, and eventually they form the intellectual background of a culture and serve the apparatus of the state. If we take progressivism to be a religion, this leads to an interesting possibility: progressivism is in the proselytising stage and a functioning society could evolve from progressivism once it has run its course. Looking at the history religion, what we would expect to happen is for progressivism to be reduced to dogma, symbol and ritual, stripped of any revolutionary social aims, as the realities of maintaining state and society set in. Democratic representatives would be reduced to symbolic power and “Democracy” and “Liberty” would be hollowed out to become mere icons. Women would have purely symbolic positions in government and business. Men would engage in ritualistic humiliation by women and minorities. The libertinism of mature progressivism would look like something like tantra, with contained, ritualised transgression (perhaps confined to festivals or a “coming of age” period in our late teens). Progressive texts and mantras would be recited without understanding. Harvard would become an actual Cathedral. You could argue that much of this is already happening, of course.

    The big problem with this picture, which I present merely as a thought experiment, is immigration. Without immigration, progressivism could perhaps evolve into mere symbolism and ritual (provided we avoid the Left singularity), but with it, it appears to be self-destructive, since it cannot even uphold its own bizarre traditions.

    [Reply]

    Lesser Bull Reply:

    That is really interesting.

    I’ve speculated that the harmful aspect of the Left is the progress. Our current set of programs and practices isn’t ideal on any front, but if they were a permanent resolution, we’d develop tweaks and work-arounds. The problem is they aren’t a permanent resolution. They are a baseline for continued progress. Sounds like you’re saying something similar.

    Your model of religious development makes sense. But I don’t believe that any religion will plug into the model equally. Christianity and Buddhism are primarily personal religions about individual ethics. This is obvious when reading the gospels. The cultural and political revolutionary elements are important but derivative. Progressivism is reversed. Its primary arena is the public and political arena. The personal ethics are secondary (this is why it’s so easy and so ineffectual to point out the hypocrisy of progressives). This is a strength of progressivism in some times and places because it allows it to solve problems. This is a weakness because once actual problems are solved, progressives can only continue to reenact their founding myth by attacking fake problems. Christianity and Buddhism are reversed. The problems of personal character they seek to resolve are never permanently solveable, which means they tend to resolve into formulaic systems of going through the motions, but also means that it is possible to recapture the original vision and reenact Christ or the Buddha without having to pretend the world is other than it is. (Islam is a bit of a middle case). This means that progressivism will have a harder time resolving into your last ritualistic stage than Christianity or Buddhism.

    One implication of your model is that the most effective NRx action is intellectual. The more we develop effective arguments that progressivism applied comprehensively is madness, the more the intelligent response on the other side will tend to be that progressivism is only being applied symbolically and so our attacks on real world consequences are strawmen.

    That sounds far too optimistic. You or I or both must be wrong.

    [Reply]

    scientism Reply:

    I tend to think of progressivism as being more focused on individual ethics. The aspects of social reform develop from the ethical revisionism. So the original arguments against monarchy and aristocracy were that they offend moral principles. The goal was always to create a “new man.” In the Enlightenment, this figure was the man of reason, which really came down to adopting a new system of morality supposedly founded on “pure reason” which rendered the current social order illegitimate. Once you have this new morality, you see the world in terms of crude power relationships, differences in wealth and status. But if you go back and look at the early view, they could make perfect sense of hierarchy, different roles (gender roles, social and professional roles), the relativity of virtue to role, etc. It was only after a new morality was adopted that these things took on the appearance of something monstrous that needed to be overthrown. Since then, it has really been about reforming the man rather than society. This, again, was true from the start. People revered king and country, which seemed deplorable to the new morality, so the people had to be reeducated (“enlightened”). Libertinism is also due to this new morality: The earlier view of morality allowed for a kind of intellectual “division of labour” in ethical matters, so moral authority made sense and moral institutions (religious institutions) made sense, but the new morality, claiming to be based on pure reason, can make no sense of this. Every person can find it for themselves (or so the reformers thought). So the moral authorities became illegitimate and morality had to be rebuilt from scratch, but they could only make sense of things that harmed other people (primarily because they lacked a developmental, character-focused view), and so they became libertines and came to view moral authority as arbitrary and illegitimate. So you have here essentially the social consequences of a moral project.

    So the next step according to my account of religion, would be for the institutions that were lost in this process to reestablish themselves while paying symbolic adherence to the new morality. It’s not clear to me how this process works, but you can see it in history. Every religion begins with extraordinary aims but is eventually tamed by the state. Eventually even pacifism can be used to justify war. It’s a common lament you see from historians of religion: such great hopes, but eventually it just becomes a way of talking, a kind of ornamentation of language and ritual adherence, while people carry on as usual. This is probably too glib, I do think religion is useful; there are, for example, particularly philosophical errors that are more difficult to make as a Christian than as a Buddhist (such as nihilism). It’s not as if each religion doesn’t have its own character. But the point is that the religion is tamed to the point that the state can carry out its duties and society can continue to flourish; people find a way to adhere to the doctrine in the course of living a good life and the state finds a way to bend the doctrine to its needs.

    So the downside is that this process usually takes a long time. The question is then whether we can accelerate it. I think the approach would be, as you say, to develop arguments that progressivism is having dire effects but the key issue here is that we have to do it using the language of progressivism. We have to turn their doctrine against them. We have to say “this outcome is not sufficiently progressive.” We have to come up with symbolic and ritualised forms of progressivism that appear more progressive than the ordinary forms of progressivism. Note that the usual progression of a religion involves the constant addition of metaphysical baggage. So the Buddha starts as a man but becomes a kind of cosmic being who has taken human form countless times and is the greatest among a whole pantheon of such beings. It starts off as a religion of asceticism and ends up a religion where you get to go straight to heaven by reciting a meaningless mantra. It’s like a kind of superstimuli. You keep adding superpowers. Of course, with progressivism, you can’t go in that direction. But it’s not as if progressivism is without metaphysics. You can turn it in the other direction. Richard Rorty took a shot at this with his “anti-anti-ethnocentrism.” His argument was essentially that anti-ethnocentrism assumes that there’s such a thing as truth, but that’s just a Western (ethnocentric) idea, so we’re stuck being ethnocentric. There’s no reason to accept Western ideology as truth and not greater truth by which to judge any other ideology, we have to be ironists. The crude version would be “let’s all become ironic Catholics, get ironically married, and have a dozen ironic babies.” There’s lots of this sort of thing going on in Continental philosophy, but none of it seems to be having the desired effect.

    There might be historical examples for doing this deliberately too. Perhaps you can look at the reconciliation of Aristotelianism and Christian doctrine in this way, or the way the Confucians handled Buddhism and Daoism. I’m not entirely sure.

    Lesser Bull Reply:

    Again,extremely interesting. You might have written the most productive pointer for further inquiry on the thread. What really needs resolved is whether you’re right that progressivism is a personal religion or whether I’m right that it was primarily concerned with social structures. I tend to think of Joachim of Fiore as the fountainhead, but he’s ambiguous. He is neither clearly one nor the other.

    Here’s a thought you inspired–a progressive attack on mass democracy, the media, the academy, etc. They’re all inegalitarian. We should pick our rulers, our journalists, and our professors by lot. 😉

    Posted on June 2nd, 2014 at 2:35 pm Reply | Quote
  • Howard Vaan Says:

    As for topics, I’d like to see more AI stuff.,

    e.g. AI using biological modelling (e.g. Blue Brain), vs ignoring biology (Google translation tech).

    I appreciate this may not be wedgey enough.

    Also, more on the fracture lines in Accelerationism.

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 2nd, 2014 at 3:20 pm Reply | Quote
  • Lesser Bull Says:

    I don’t think we are ready for action yet. We don’t understand the problem well enough. Any action should be experimental.

    We need to understand the Left’s religious aspects better. What makes the Left so strong? I’m going to argue that the Left has make a key innovation in religious sociology that is highly adaptive in the modern environment. It is poorly understood, especially by the Left itself. Knowledge in this area may be the key to mastery.

    The adaptive innovation is being non-exclusive. You can be a progressive and still formally a Christian or a Jew or an Atheist or a WTFer. For why this is such a key innovation, see below.

    One counterargument is that the Left’s key innovation is denying that it is a religion at all. Close, but no. Imagine that the Left continued to falsely deny that it was a religion but was exclusive, like Communism was. It would be much less effective. The churches did a decent job fighting off Communism, but they have been mostly swallowed by the Left. The Left’s denial that it is a religion is a complement to and a derivative of the key adaptive innovation of being non-exclusive. The denial is not the innovation itself.

    The other counterargument is as follows: Exclusivity was historically a major adaptation that outcompeted the prior non-exclusive religions. At least in the West, Christianity ate the pagan’s lunch, as did Islam. So how can non-exclusivity be an innovation? Easy. Different environments. Exclusivity worked great in an environment where most religions were non-exclusive. Multi-culted paganism simply could not put up effective antibodies to the monotheistic creeds, whereas they could, which made conversion close to a one-way street. They grew hugely.

    But in an environment of exclusive, fit religions, creating another exclusive religion doesn’t work. In that environment, its adaptive for new religions to be non-exclusive because it gets around the antibodies of the already existing sects. If everybody’s a Catholic, then converting everyone from Catholicism would be very hard, but if you just want to convert them to some new thing while leaving them a Catholic, that might be much easier.
    Evidence for this is how many pseudo- or abortive attempts at a non-exclusive religion our era has thrown up.
    *Americanism aka civic religion. There’s a lot of scholarship on how America’s civic religion is actually a religion. Most nationalisms are non-exclusive religions, IMHO

    *scientology. In its original formulation, it was explicitly supposed to be a technology that could be added to a number of faiths or philosophies

    *the growing ecumenical mood among serious believers in the West. There is a felt need for some kind of common basis and shared belief without abandoning or submerging their respective faiths. Most of you aren’t aware of this, not being among the faithful, but I am. Look at this strange article about an ecumenical Swedish monastery. http://www.firstthings.com/article/2014/06/not-so-secular-sweden

    *the Bahai. Along the same lines, the Vatican’s move post Vatican II to treat many other Christian faiths as part of the church in some sense (defective, but still part of the church), and the Mormons approach for the last few decades of saying that other faiths have lots of good teachings and practices, they just want to add a little more to them or round them out.

    *this might be a stretch, but the bizarre phenomenon of fascist internationals. How the belief in the apotheosis of the state (fascist version) or of an ethnicity (Nazi version) could lend itself to an international multi-state movement I don’t know

    We need to investigate and understand. How does the Left’s non-exclusivism work? What keeps the Left relatively coherent without any defined center or ritual (or is there a center and ritual?) Is the Left’s denial that it is a religion and its failure to have a defined institution and ritual necessary to its non-exclusivity, or would it be possible to improve on the Left in this regard?

    [Reply]

    nydwracu Reply:

    Nationalist internationals make perfect sense, since today’s nationalism is based on the same type of thing as progressivism — a thing we really ought to have a name for. A set of universal political and metapolitical principles that can be added onto existing exclusive movements.

    If you want to defend your traditions, you want to defend them from something; and if that something is large enough that it threatens other traditions, it may be adaptive to form an alliance and develop principles that allow alliances. There’s some irony here, of course: a missionary religion opposed to the existence of missionary religions…

    The same thing would probably apply to Fascist internationals, but I haven’t heard of any of those. Maybe CasaPound?

    [Reply]

    Lesser Bull Reply:

    **today’s nationalism is based on the same type of thing as progressivism — a thing we really ought to have a name for. A set of universal political and metapolitical principles that can be added onto existing exclusive movements. **

    That’s a great definition, but I submit that its really just a form of religion. No need for a new concept. Religion 1.0 was polytheistic and particularistic but also inclusive (it didn’t deny other deities and could sometimes acknowledge them), Religion 2.0 was monotheistic and exclusive (one Lord, one faith, one baptism), and Religion 3.0 is a-theistic and inclusive. So far progressivism has been the most successful variant of Religion 3.0.

    [Reply]

    Peter A. Taylor Reply:

    @Lesser Bull:
    Great food for thought. Larry Iannaccone has written about “portfolio” vs. “exclusive” religions, but it hadn’t occurred to me that an established religion might try to jump the chasm.

    Do you have an email address you are willing to make public?

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 2nd, 2014 at 4:05 pm Reply | Quote
  • Xunzi Says:

    I would venture to claim that the academic background of those susceptible to jumping over to your side of fence is quite diverse, including from within the traditionally leftist fields of the social sciences and humanities. If your reasoned and incisive posts from your previous thread represent a dominant strain of thought in NRx, I would say that some support, however minor, from the intellectual class is inevitable. Political scientists with realist inclinations, libertarian economists, sociobiologists and evolutionary psychologists, functionalists and evolutionary sociologists, and traditionalists of literature and history are especially vulnerable. Linguists and philosophers are, perchance, among those most readily predisposed to writing even without the prospect of personal recognition and thus have greater visibility, though Taylor’s explanation is more satisfactory.

    I feel as if the concept of ‘exit’ in relation to NRx needs to be more rigorously theorized. Has anyone here actually read Hirschman’s “Exit, Voice, and Loyalty”? It is a good point of departure for this topic. Many issues remain murky or poorly conceptualized. Does the social conservative stance on marriage generate friction between the idea of ‘exit,’ which manifests as divorce in the realm of the family (it seems like special pleading to say exit applies only to states)? How about the relevance of ‘voice’ and limitations of exit? If tomorrow the UN made discussions of human biology and race an international crime, there would be no possibility for ‘exit’.

    Aesthetics versus ethics with an eye cast towards Nietzsche. Are the hierarchical social structures and aristocratic values implicit in NRx primarily for the achievement of a higher aesthetic plane or simply for the ethical imperative of suppressing the deviant and murderous? Furthermore, to what extent are tradeoffs acceptable?

    War.

    I want to echo Sir Sandwiches’ concerns. How is the intellectual milieu sustained and can it cross into the realm of knowledge production? Is blogging sufficient or will it eventually plateau or fizzle out before reaching critical mass? Are other avenues being pursued that will allow NRx to operate on multiple levels, including the present one contained within the blogosphere?

    [Reply]

    nydwracu Reply:

    It must be pointed out that Moldbug seems to ignore loyalty.

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    There’s not much evidence that loyalty matters much (beyond the family). Even in the sharpest case — military cohesion — small-unit group attachments entirely overwhelm larger attachments to peoples or causes. It’s no coincidence that it was the (NW European) culture in which loyalties had been most radically attenuated that conquered the world.

    [Reply]

    Lesser Bull Reply:

    **Even in the sharpest case — military cohesion — small-unit group attachments entirely overwhelm larger attachments to peoples or causes**

    It’s not clear that this is totally the case. The modern academy desperately wants it to be the case and has since prior to WWII, since patriotism is an atavistic relic of the evil past. But even then there’s evidence that patriotism and cause matter. There’s McPhersons’ For Cause and Comrades; there’s the comparative demographics of the Continentals and the British Regulars in the American Revolution which shows that they were basically the same group of poor second sons and small tradesmen fallen on hard times except for a core of about 10% of the Continentals who were probably their because they believed in the cause who turned out to be catalysts for the army staying together when enlistments expired; there’s the fact that armies everywhere emphasize patriotic rituals and propagandize their own troops on the justice of their cause, which suggests that its adaptive; there is the fact that the WWII Wehrmacht, which spent more effort than any other military we know of to promote loyalty to an outside unit (the fuhrer, the german race) as opposed to just propaganda for the justice of a cause is also usually considered the most effective fighting force of the modern era per capita; there is the fact that the usual rival to the Wehrmacht in these kinds of arguments for ‘best ever fighting force’ is the Israelis, which has the same kind of national/ethnic loyalties; there is the effectiveness of the French Revolutionary troops, who had both ideological and nationalistic motivations; there is the consideration that while small-group loyalty may keep men in the fight, it can’t actually bring them to form the small group, so volunteers must have some other reason for volunteering, and the small group itself must have some collective reason for not deserting en masse.

    So is small group loyalty extremely important, especially in actual combat? Sure. But “entirely overwhelm”? Nonsense.

    NRx_N00B Reply:

    Regarding the individualism-collectivism social organization of humans—how much do the size, density and distribution of economic resources predict loyalty/subgroup size?—can we think of it as instinct driven dynamic firmware that shifts as a function of available resources/energy?

    Xunzi Reply:

    I have to agree with the admin that loyalty is no longer much of a factor even when including families. Certainly loyalties to the state are the first to be eroded, and the vast majority of those who would refuse under most any circumstance to exit from the US, or a given EU state, only stay for instrumental reasons; a government job, unthinking complacency, the prospects of welfare. The growing prominence of exit is to some extent due to the fact that loyalty to the dying nation-state is no longer viable, and they clearly could never cultivate in their dependents such an abstract value (I weep for the marriages of those married to the state).

    [Reply]

    nyan_sandwich Reply:

    >Is blogging sufficient or will it eventually plateau or fizzle out before reaching critical mass? Are other avenues being pursued that will allow NRx to operate on multiple levels, including the present one contained within the blogosphere?

    Other avenues are being pursued, with ominous passive voice and everything.

    [Reply]

    Contaminated NEET Reply:

    That sounds fantastic. Any openings for a lowly orc in this Army of Evil?

    [Reply]

    nyan_sandwich Reply:

    No openings for lowly orcs in anything I’m doing, sorry.

    More people need to be doing this, though: http://henrydampier.wordpress.com/2014/01/25/drafting-plans-for-the-thomas-carlyle-club-for-young-reactionaries/

    Posted on June 2nd, 2014 at 6:15 pm Reply | Quote
  • RorschachRomanov Says:

    Lou: …” in a world where we have identified the existence of a multiverse, monotheism is just silly.”

    This is a non sequitur. How exactly is size/inter-dimensionality relevant to the question of God? I mean, the implication here seems to be that if the universe where more delimited in scope, the existence of God would be ‘more’ likely, but such a metric would be ridiculous in terms of the question of epistemological quantification.

    [Reply]

    E. Antony Gray (@RiverC) Reply:

    it betrays a misunderstanding of monotheism, akin to conflating it with ‘local monotheism’ – i.e. “god of [locality]” . Primitive monotheism is of this sort, where the ‘god of the river’ is the ‘one god’. In this case, the existence of other rivers may imply or demonstrate the existence of other gods, but does not question necessarily the existence of any god-in-particular.

    However, Christian thinkers in particular have long mused on this (see Lewis’ Space Trilogy for an example of the Earth-as-nexus-of-salvation problem.)

    The general answer is that according to the fathers, the incarnation event is entirely pre-destined prior to any fall or sin, meaning that in all given possible universes it must occur. The other possibility (though I of course find the theory of multiverses to be nothing more than an intriguing mind game) is that the salvation-event occurs in only one plane within the multiverse -which may have implications for all of the others.

    Either way, this all depends on what the ‘many worlds’ (multi-verse) are: are they probabilistic branches (essentially, dopplegangers) of our own? In that case the human person Jesus could occur in all of them, and if he does, the incarnation occurs in all of them. On the other hand if they are merely ‘other’ worlds within some larger system, this need not be the case, nor even need it be the case that these worlds are in any way ‘fallen’ at all.

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    You might be missing some divine irony.

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 2nd, 2014 at 8:20 pm Reply | Quote
  • Irving Says:

    I can say that for myself, I am a student of philosophy and religion. And while I am not necessarily a linguist, I do speak 2 languages and I read a few more. When it comes to technology, though, I am illiterate, that is, I know no computer languages, I’ve never owned an I-phone (I own a pre-paid, flip phone), etc. Perhaps I am just speaking for myself, but I think it is interesting that there are people who–like myself–find themselves attracted to neo-reaction, although the world that neo-reaction intends to create would eliminate them first.

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 3rd, 2014 at 1:03 am Reply | Quote
  • RorschachRomanov Says:

    Recognizing that imaginative fiction may have a part to play in highlighting the abnormalities of progressive normality, I would ask if anyone thinks the following has potential:

    Along “bizarro fiction” lines:

    A hipster-esque type young female (21-22 years of age) ritually applies garlic powder to her pubic area, having a fear of vampires. In her sexual adventures, it would be enough to act as a vampire chastity belt, and the men don’t mind, cunnilingus with a culinary twist.

    One of her progressivist friends catches wind of her anti-Vampire ritual behavior and is utterly appalled. The fucking audacity that one could display such vampire-phobia in the 21st century! How could she have even been fooled into thinking that Queen Garlic was anything but a bigot, full of hatred?!

    Have any potential?

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 3rd, 2014 at 3:26 am Reply | Quote
  • Shlomo Maistre Says:

    All language is in some sense propaganda, since man contemplates for understanding and communicates for effect.

    I suspect the engineers/finance/sci-fi geeks who come to NRx do so disproportionately via the Ron Paul/Mises/Rothbard route, while we linguists/lawyers/humanities-types tend to arrive at NRx via paleoconservatism/religion/spirituality.

    Then again, I was a devoted Ron Paulbot for many years in my youth even though my quant is merely decent and my verbal is, umm, beyond the charts.

    [Reply]

    nydwracu Reply:

    I got here via a particularly vibrant public school system followed by college in Massachusetts, combined with a reasonably-paranoid sense of localism strong enough to prevent me from going anywhere near conservatism.

    I tried to be a libertarian, but failed. I realize this will be controversial around here, but if capitalism wants an endless flood of ever-cheaper labor imported from ever-more-uncivilized hellholes, to hell with what capitalism wants.

    [Reply]

    RorschachRomanov Reply:

    Our ‘conservative’ brethren around the time of the Industrial Revolution knew this all too well- capitalism tends towards the usurpation of nationalism.

    Here, it’s not even the importation of labor, grounded in said labor being cheaper that the real horror is revealed, but, given the individualism towards which capitalism trends, and the self regardingness it engenders, the importing of labor will be literally necessary for sustainment in light of the fact that Westerners are procreating in numbers on track to extinction.

    [Reply]

    scientism Reply:

    Capitalism and progressivism feed on each other. It’s unsurprising since they both have the same source and share the same basic philosophical outlook. But progressivism probably would’ve withered on the vine if not for the fact that it strips people of everything except the need to work and consume. It’s part of the capitalist drive for “efficiency.” Ethics, nationality, meaning, race, families, etc; all must be dismantled so that the market – misconceived as an entity with wants and needs – can be satisfied. Anything not destroyed is commercialised.

    Aeroguy Reply:

    I have to interject before going to sleep, I’ll have more in the morning. “the market – misconceived as an entity with wants and needs” While the market isn’t a single entity unless you think of it as an economic Brahman (which it technically is), it includes the sum total wants and needs of everything connected to the economic universe aka demand. Ethics is popular with the rich as it is a luxury that often comes with a high price and can be put on display for status or enjoyed privately for it’s own sake (there’s a reason background checks for security clearances begin with a look at the person’s credit report). Economic utilitarian thinking dominates real politic where countries threaten each other with mutually assured recession, posturing with real measured costs, 5th gen fighter jets, purchases for nationalism. Meaning, like happiness can’t be bought, but wealth sure helps in searching for them, at least as far as not being distracted by concerns closer to the base of maslow’s hierarchy of needs (wealth is necessary for the accumulation of philosophers). I can continue later but capitalism is best understood as a force of nature like evolution, a part of reality, something to be respected, even if you don’t like it. Commercialization is a whole other animal, I’ll finish later.

    admin Reply:

    (“I realize this will be controversial around here …” — If only!)

    [Reply]

    nyan_sandwich Reply:

    I found Lesswrong just after I graduated from school for mechanical engineering, which relatively quickly lead me from unexamined progressivism to racism, authoritarianism, moldbuggery, social traditionalism, and transhumanism.

    I was never really a libertarian, though more out of intellectual laziness than any particular disagreement. I was libertarian to the extent that I’d been exposed to libertarian thought. The whole “somehow small government” thing never made sense though.

    [Reply]

    C. Y. Chen Reply:

    I went to school for electrical engineering but have worked in software development ever since I graduated. Unfortunately, I detest both fields, and I’ve always been way more of humanities/arts kind of guy. I arrived at neoreaction through both the Ron Paul libertarian and palæoconservative/religious routes, the two of which I tried to reconcile during my college years.

    Of course, I abandoned the libertarian/ancap side after having met plenty of them from college. If I had never been one of them, I don’t think I would despise libertarians as intensely as I do now.

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 3rd, 2014 at 4:56 am Reply | Quote
  • Brian Says:

    From what I can gather, Anissimov was a relatively apolitical transhumanism enthusiast who became a White Nationalist recently. I’m not sure why he feels so compelled to hold on to the “neoreaction” label since neoreaction and White Nationalism aren’t the same thing. Is it because he has professional and other ties to the transhumanism community, and he doesn’t feel comfortable being an open White Nationalist among them and thus wants an alternative label to adopt?

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 3rd, 2014 at 6:07 am Reply | Quote
  • fotrkd Says:

    Admin’s current Twitter feeds 🙂 (for those of us who can’t fav or RT) :

    +1

    [Reply]

    fotrkd Reply:

    “It’s not about spelling, it’s about scatalogical incontinence.”

    Do you remember… before?

    [Reply]

    Posted on June 8th, 2014 at 10:41 pm Reply | Quote

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