This is going to continue happening, and to get more intense. The superficial cause is obvious, both Michael Anissimov and myself are extreme, twitchy ideologues, massively invested in NRx, with utterly divergent understandings of its implications. We both know this fight has to come, and that tactical timing is everything. (It’s really not personal, and I hope it doesn’t become so, but when monarchical ideas are involved it’s very easy for “the personal is political” to take a right-wing form.)

It’s worth remembering this diagram, before going further. It suggests that divergence is essential to the far right, which yawns open across an anarcho-autocratic spectrum. Since a disinclination to moderation has already been indicated by anyone arriving at the far right fringe, it should scarcely be surprising when this same tendency rifts the far right itself. Then consider this:

The strict Outside in complement to this would be something like: disintegrative Social Darwinism through ruthless competition is what the Far Right is all about. A formula of roughly this kind will inevitably come into play as the conflict evolves. Momentarily, though, I’m more interested in situating the clashes to come than initiating them. Whatever the contrary assertions — and they will come (doubtless from both sides) — the entire arena is located on the ultra-right, oriented vertically on the ideological space diagram, rather than horizontally (between positions whose primary differentiation is between the more-and-less right).

Stated crudely, but I think reasonably accurately, the controversy polarizes Neocameralism against Identitarian Community. My suspicion is that Michael Anissimov will ultimately attenuate the Moldbuggian elements of his neoreactionary strain to the edge of disappearance, and that his hesitation about doing this rapidly is a matter of political strategy rather than philosophical commitment. From this ideological war, which he is conducting with obvious ability, he wants “Neoreaction” to end up with the people (or followers (who I don’t remotely care about)), whereas I want it to hold onto the Moldbug micro-tradition (which he sees as finally dispensable). The only thing that is really being scrapped over is the name, but we both think this semiotic real estate is of extraordinary value — although for very different reasons.

One remark worth citing as supportive evidence, because its driving ideas are exemplary:

While I deeply value intellectual engagement with the smartest of these “trads” I would consider it a complete victory if they were to abandon the NRx tag and re-brand themselves as Animissovites, or Neo-Evolans, or whatever, and depart in pursuit of a Monarcho-traditionalist homeland in Idaho. If NRx was socially reduced to a tenth (or less) of its size, but those remaining were Moldbuggian fundamentalists, working to refine the Neocameralist theoretical model for restraint of government through Patchwork Exit-dynamics, it would be strengthened immeasurably in all the ways that matter to this blog. It would also then simply be the case that media accusations of Neo-Feudal or White Nationalist romanticism — accompanied by ambitions for personal political power — were idiotic media slurs. Sadly, this cannot be said with total confidence as things stand.

The Neocameralism campaign will almost certainly come first, but it is still only March, and nothing needs to unfold with unseemly haste …

ADDED: Some valuable thoughts from Anomaly UK. (Includes bonus Bitcoin reference.)

March 22, 2014admin 118 Comments »
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118 Responses to this entry

  • spandrell Says:

    About the time the purges started (grabs a knife).

    Alas secretary general Moldbug won’t come out to excommunicate Anissimov and his cohort so it’s you who has to get your hands dirty.

    I’m quite happy to forsake the NRx brand if I can go on nitpicking at the neocameralists btw.


    Michael Anissimov Reply:

    Why does this political dialogue always devolve into ad hominem attack instead of essays in favor of neocameralism? Where’s your essay on neocameralism?


    spandrell Reply:

    On my blog.


    nydwracu Reply:

    Because you consistently appear to be trying to turn a recent clade into something that existed before its emergence in order to become its spokesman.

    If that’s not what you’re doing, it’s a perception problem; if it is what you’re doing, it’s the inescapable consequence of it and you should already know that.


    admin Reply:

    “I’m quite happy to forsake the NRx brand if I can go on nitpicking at the neocameralists btw.” — Trying to pull serious critics of Neocameralism back in — or at least inwards — is one of the principal reasons to dramatize these disagreements. I agree with the comment by Rasputin below that the era of “Goulding / Szabo … / Vladimir” criticism was an intellectual high-water mark, when people like Foseti and Handle were far more engaged, and less alienated by the dominant tenor of the neoreactionary project. There was already an authoritarian race-politics option drawing upon non-Anglosphere models before NRx arrived on the scene, and what Moldbug was doing clearly wasn’t that. As our best minds have begun to wonder whether that is still true, they have started to drift away …


    spandrell Reply:

    Was Szabo ever actually engaging us? or Moldbug back then.

    One idea of why Goulding and Vladimir drifted away is that neocameralism is a priori absurd; and they couldn’t come up with any better ideas on their own anyway. They might be as discouraged by their own intellectual block as by the blogosphere situation.

    We could try to get Handle and Foseti fired so they come back and play with us.


    Vladimir Reply:


    I still read most of the same blogs as before. I just don’t have the motivation for commenting on them any more. But this is not due to any “intellectual block” on my part– on the contrary, given a suitable venue, I’d be as eager as ever to discuss my ongoing thoughts on this and many other subjects.

    Rather, the reasons should be obvious from my previous writings. First, the plummeting quality of the reactionary blogosphere means ever fewer occasions when I’m intrigued to enter a discussion. Second, even when I am, I’m instantly demotivated by the prospect of whatever I write being drowned in a mass of boring low-quality comments. Third, if I still feel motivated despite that, I’m decisively repulsed by the prospect of being associated in any way with the whole ideological movement-building scene and its self-important posturing, internet drama, and ever more juvenile and lowbrow level of discourse.

    In the past I warned on several occasions that the fun of movement-building, posturing, and internet drama would have its inevitable price (even aside from being immature and undignified by itself). When I got overwhelming disagreement in response, and moreover realized that this kind fun was in fact the primary motivation for most people in these blogs, I chose the only dignified option and headed for the exit. Given that you were in fact active in these discussions, I don’t understand your inclination to speculate that some “intellectual block” caused me to “drift” away.

    spandrell Reply:

    Good to see you.

    I was thinking more of Goulding, who made a new blog with great aspirations but didn’t last much, and hasn’t been around much either.

    I did participate in the discussions and as you know through our email correspondence, ended up agreeing with you. Nothing came out of it though.

    I’m always tempted to pull a Razib and clean my comments section of any substandard comment but seeing GNXPs current comment threads it doesn’t seem to have done much good for him either.

    Greg Cochran’s temper also isn’t helping his comments section. It’s hard.

    spandrell Reply:

    And if you have something on mind by all means get your own blog running. Writing is always better than not writing.

    Alrenous Reply:

    I’m interested in knowing what a comment section fully consistent with Vladimirian principles would look like. Note this is entirely orthogonal to agreeing with them.

    RiverC Reply:

    Kind of like SomethingAwful, but somehow add to the rules things like ‘signalling for dominance’, ‘nitpicking over semantics for the purpose of ignoring the real disagreement’, ‘being a demotic douche’, and so forth, plus a group of people willing to follow them and not whinge about it

    I would willingly join this wherever it is

    Handle Reply:

    ‘We could try to get Handle and Foseti fired so they come back and play with us.’

    NB to all those with malfunctioning humor-detection algorithms: Don’t anyone go and take this literally.

    Posted on March 22nd, 2014 at 6:27 pm Reply | Quote
  • drethelin Says:

    I would be happy to see this schism happen. It would mean I wouldn’t have to see as much shit from people who would happily throw me in an oven and prefer to talk about jewish conspiracies rather than theorize about how to actually build effective governmental structures. Patchwork Exit leaves plenty of room for the ethnic nationalist city-state, far away from me.


    admin Reply:

    “Patchwork Exit leaves plenty of room for the ethnic nationalist city-state, far away from me.” — That’s also how I envisage future amicable relations.


    Zimriel Reply:

    May God keep the Tsar . . .


    Posted on March 22nd, 2014 at 6:28 pm Reply | Quote
  • A Reader Says:

    My sophistication is not really up to the level of this blog, but may I ask a simple question?

    What group of people in the real world do the neocameralists imagine living among in their neocameralist society? Please reference the actual world we live in right now, which is mainly composed of nations dominated by one or another ethnic/racial group, and often composed almost only of that group. And these groups, with the exception of Western whites, are almost all ethnocentric and can be expected to remain so for the forseeable future. So that living among them as a white neocameralist – unless you are in a white nation – means you will not be living among your own people, and will thus be subject to the vulnerabilities of all outsiders.

    Do you expect that this handful of neocameralists – probably almost exclusively highly-educated, relatively prosperous whites like the host of this blog and Moldbug – will disperse among the Asians and watch from afar as things go up in smoke? And this will bring about neocameralism…how?

    I think there is a obvious way of reconciling white nationaism and neocameralism: a white nation that is governed neocamerally. You need the relative racial homogeneity in order to have social harmony and trust, and you need the neocameralism to govern wisely. Both aspects are based in cold-eyed realism about human nature. In what way are they incompatible?


    Hurlock Reply:

    I am oversimplifying but the most basic conflict can be expressed thus:

    Neocameralism is about efficiency, ethno-nationalism is about community.
    Now, neocameralism can (and is) also about community, but it comes second to efficiency. And it’s the other way around with nationalism. This is (I think) the biggest disagreement between the two camps. Also, for me, and I think capitalists in general, nationalism is a very suspicious ideology. From this side of the spectrum, nationalism is pretty much socialism which discriminates. Which is not saying much really. Someone should actually look more into this because I think it is really important (maybe I will if I find the time), but nationalism has some very dubious roots, basically evolving at the same time as socialism and from similar ideological ground.

    I think still more research has to be done into history. A lot of people have been pointing out how classical liberalism and modern progressivism are related (I however, remain somewhat unconvinced about this), yet I don’t see a lot of people asking if traditionalism/nationalism and progressivist socialism are related.


    RiverC Reply:

    The part I don’t understand in all of this is that Evola was also suspicious of nationalism, calling it promiscuous. This is not about neo-reaction, it is an attempt to ‘neo’ the paleo-reactionaries by throwing out the ancaps. I see that intellectual suspicion of secular Jews is realistic and intelligent, but I can’t take any more from it than that. White nationalism is ontologically erroneous in the USA, regardless of ‘popular support’ (which by the way, is not an Evolian path anyway.)

    But regardless of what, say, Brooks Bayne says, dislike of Jews is not Reaction, and Identitarian politics are only Reactionary to the extent that they are not merely national socialisms. Dislike of Jews and communitarianism are not ‘essential’ Reactionary qualifications (try to find them anywhere in Don Colacho.)

    Thus, I think what you’re looking at is something else; Annisimov knows Evola (or so I believe;) therefore:

    1. This is a shit-test (don’t fail it, bros)
    2. Annisimov is testing the limits of NR to see if it CAN possibly accommodate large swaths of Paleos without splitting itself open.

    Then again maybe I’m too apolitical to even care to notice the politics here


    RiverC Reply:

    Communitarianism is the wrong word here; perhaps ‘mass communitarianism’ is more correct. Real communitarianism (such as which functions in a family or a small group) is highly reactionary.

    Peter A. Taylor Reply:

    Community and nationalism do not necessarily play nicely together.

    See _The Righteous Mind_, by Jonathan Haidt. Haidt writes that human beings are 90% “chimp” (individualistic) and 10% “bee” (hive creatures). In the context of a quotation from Benito Mussolini, Haidt writes, (p. 242-3) “Let’s imagine two nations, one full of small-scale hives, one devoid of them.” Think of Burke’s “little platoons”.

    A nation of individuals, in contrast, in which citizens spend all their time in Durkheim’s lower level, is likely to be hungry for meaning. If people can’t satisfy their need for deep connection in other ways, they’ll be more receptive to a smooth-talking leader who urges them to renounce their lives of “selfish momentary pleasure” and follow him onward to “that purely spiritual existence” in which their value as human beings consists.


    VXXC Reply:


    nydwracu Reply:

    Neocameralism doesn’t answer questions like that; instead, it’s a mechanism for answering questions like that.

    You can ask, “is Coke considered better than RC Cola?”, or you can institute capitalism and find out. You can ask, “are ethno-nationalist states considered better than mixed states?”, or you can institute the patchwork and find out.

    Though there are definitely criticisms that can be leveled at neocameralism: it might deliver desirable results in Singapore and San Francisco, but it wouldn’t in the Congo, which has several trillion dollars worth of natural resources and an average IQ somewhere below 70.

    Same in places where exit is particularly unlikely. Moldbug doesn’t seem to take loyalty into account, even though he got voice/exit from Hirschman, who did.


    admin Reply:

    “Neocameralism doesn’t answer questions like that; instead, it’s a mechanism for answering questions like that.” — superbly formulated. Thanks.


    Handle Reply:

    Re: Congo: The claim is unsubstantiated. If the ends of Congo governance is the most ‘desirable’ outcome given the circumstances (capital and human resource endowments), then then question is one of means and policy. You must answer the question why a Neocameral regime would select a less optimal policy set than some other alternative regime, while it knows that a ‘superior’ policy set exists. You could set universalist criteria for ‘desirable’, distinct from preference maximization, and denying Weber’s fact-value distinction, but that’s just defining one’s way out of the actual problem.

    Re: Loyalty: People are loyal to name brands and pay large premiums to purchase atomically identical products. It makes them feel good for some reason. And producers invest a considerable amount of marketing money into building exactly this sort of intangible good will (estimates of which even shows up in their accounting ledgers) so they can extract hefty margins well above marginal costs even in a competitive environment with plenty of exit, just a few inches away on the same shelf. In other words, companies leverage the tendency of their customer human being to (arguably) irrational and detrimental degrees of unjustified loyalty.

    These are a kind of economic rent and so much be defended from attack, but the defense is remarkably easy, because lots of people like being loyal to something – c’est les gens. People will even form stupid teams over brand loyalty, feel important communal-derived emotions of ego, vicarious self-esteem and pride related to ‘belonging’ to that team, and pick fights and argue endlessly with each other over trivial claims about respective merits (I remember moronic Nike vs Reebok ‘arguments’ that were more viscous than those over the sports they were supposed to enable).

    Loyalty-preservation incentivizing programs are various and highly sophisticated and span the spectrum everywhere from frequent flier miles to ‘clubs’ that are so engrossing and time consuming in such as to mimic the fulfillment of all the community, socialization, and identarian psychological functions that would make even the hardest-core religious-traditionalist jealous. Because lots of people are genetically programmed with this coordination-subroutine that is easily exploitable in a context far removed from its evolutionary origins. Sometimes brands ‘deserve’ special competitive loyalty (‘German engineering’!) and sometimes they don’t (Tylenol-branded paracetamol)

    These phenomenon are well studied in a mature field of marketing-psychology research. The psychology works similarly same for peoples and nations and regimes. I’d make the stronger claim actually – it is exactly the same, deriving as it does from the same primitive human tendencies. And so there is no obvious distinguishability in principle between corporate loyalties and national loyalties and the efforts to bolster them (or for alternative competitors to undermine them) except for which advertising techniques are available and effective given the context. Bottom Line: Group Loyalty is not the special property of non-corporations.


    Posted on March 22nd, 2014 at 6:42 pm Reply | Quote
  • Saddam Hussein's Whirling Aluminium Tubes Says:

    Well, you can get rid of all the neo-monarchists and traditionalists and white-people-should-continue-to-exist types pretty quickly. There is an easy way to, uh, accelerate the fission. Those types keep showing up in neo-reaction because the name (and some of the rhetoric) creates an association with regular reaction and actual right wing political forms that used to exist.

    Historical right wing forms were not, outside of perhaps a brief period of the pseudo-right wing American classical liberal period, about “disintegrative Social Darwinism through ruthless competition”. That is pretty far off from a description of the Ancien Regime.

    Historical right wing forms were not really about identarianism, because identity was something that could be taken for granted, but they were certainly about community and belonging, in the sense that there was a place (or caste) for each element of society. That definitely includes the proles.

    Historical right wing forms would be closer to feudalism, rather than Social Darwinism. Feudalism, of course, binds the social classes to each other through ties of mutual obligation and responsibility. While vassals owe duties to their Lords, Lords also owe reciprocal duties to their vassals.

    The doctrine of Social Darwinism disagrees:

    In 1883, Sumner published a highly influential pamphlet entitled “What Social Classes Owe to Each Other”, in which he insisted that the social classes owe each other nothing, synthesizing Darwin’s findings with free enterprise Capitalism for his justification.

    The idea that social classes (and individuals) owe each other nothing is not in accordance with the traditional position of the Right. Indeed we see that Social Darwinism was promoted by Classical Liberals and we can imagine that it would be anathema to traditionalist Catholic Monarchists.

    So, in the areas where you disagree, Anissimov’s conception of neo-reaction is far more reactionary than your own, as his ideas are in (rough) accordance with the traditions of our society dating back to the proto-Indo-Europeans

    On the other hand, your ideas on Social Darwinism and laissez faire capitalism (as opposed to caged capitalism) are Classical Liberal, not reactionary.

    So, there is one way in you can accelerate the fission that you seek and behave in accordance with the neo-reactionary intellectual micro-tradition of absolute truth; cede the neo-reactionary label to the Anissimov types and come up with a new, more accurate name for techno-commercialism. Like… uh… neo-neo-liberalism.


    Puzzle Pirate (@PuzzlePirate) Reply:

    This was actually really well put together and informative. Can you recommend any good reading on what it was like to live in the traditional order?


    admin Reply:

    I can see why the Czarists would get “reaction” — but why do they deserve the “neo-“? (MA’s argument from transhumanism is that reactionary government is needed in order to domesticate technology — so it only accentuates the point.)


    VXXC Reply:

    But also THIS


    Posted on March 22nd, 2014 at 8:04 pm Reply | Quote
  • RiverC Says:

    If I may, Mike is risking destroying the potential for getting ‘truth and mercy to kiss’ … for what? If one can allow social darwinism to rule on the level of the polity while communitarian and traditional forms rule within the polity itself, you would have received and intergrated the strengths of both the reactionary and liberal positions, while transcending them.


    Orthodox Reply:

    I think this goes to the point made above about ethnic homogeneity. I don’t think there are many actual Nationalists outside of those people who conform to the image of a White Nationalist that would have popped into your head 10 or 15 years ago upon hearing the term.

    I hear people use the term nationalism in the sense of self-determination. It is a defensive response with appeal because it reflects demographic reality in the U.S.. Had there been no immigration since the 1980s, Romney would have trounced Obama in 2012 worse than Reagan beat Mondale. Obviously, in that world these two men would never have been nominated for President in the first place. So quite clearly, if you pull out a subset of the population and draw borders around it, you get better government. That’s a tough step to accomplish, but it is simple to understand. We don’t need to formulate new political theories with unknowable results. Many people in the greater movement might quit at step 1 if step 1 was redraw the borders and select a more homogeneous population. All extreme ideologies would lose appeal because society would function at a higher level of efficiency with a lower level of internal tension.

    This is why White Nationalists are superfluous: whatever comes is going to look very much demographically like what they want. It will sap their political support. Just as there would be no “gun rights” organization if the South seceded. The NRA does some things outside of political activism, but all that activism would be pointless in a nation where there is no political support for gun control.


    RiverC Reply:

    1. NRA would still exist, but certainly it would not do political activism, given that political activism is only part of what they do, same as orgs like Audobon Society, etc.

    2. Like the criticism of the ancaps and the monarchists, how would one get there from here? In either case it looks the same: only exit provides the ground from which one could proceed in any of these directions.

    The valuation of sovereign stock is a way to make tangible and quantifiable the qualities which the citizens wish to maximize. The only argument I see of any validity, boiled down to its simplest form is this:

    It is impossible (or a metaphysical ERROR) to quantify the necessary intangible properties necessary to make the optimization of stock value in a neo-cameralist state work.

    In my view this is the point of discussion RE: neo-cameralism.

    IF this statement is proven false then it follows, ergo, that any ethnic state or religious state (Catholic monarchy for instance) would wish to rule their state using an implementation of neo-cameralism suited to their system of values, to their configuration. (Yes, Annisimov is right, that’s really flippin’ autistic)

    Neo-cameralism is, if viewed in this light, a ‘political system system’, it is not a political system but a system for implementing political systems. Of course the same guy who came up with it also invented an operating system (a system for implementing software systems.)

    Furthermore, two questions arise:

    1. Is this valuation-to-stock itself metaphysically mercantile, or to put it more crudely, too Jewish?

    2. Is valuation to be understood in totally ‘abstract’ terms, being that the ‘value’ of sovereign stock only relates to value of other sovereign stock, and never directly to commodities?

    As a neo-traditionalist, I am highly intrigued by the possibility of an Orthodox monarch equipped with such powers and aristocrats with their fingers on the health of the polity via a measure of stock value.


    Peter A. Taylor Reply:

    If I sell my shares TexCorp stock to Aum Shinrikyo, Ltd., does the army’s loyalty go with it? I wonder what would Ronald Coase would have to say about transaction costs.

    RiverC Reply:

    No, of course not, I would think- you would have to sell your stock for other stock in another SovCorp. Your army would remain with whichever corp you left, now in command of the new buyer. You would hopefully have exchanged them for something of equal or greater value to you in the other Sovcorp. The transactional cost of moving the army would be too great and in my view, maybe the way you’re thinking of it here is not ‘meta’ enough.

    When I trade one storage medium for another in web hosting, do my ‘bits’ transfer from one provider to another? No – I get (hopefully) an equivalent number of bits in another place, which I can then do with whatever it is I wish, including imprinting them with my pattern (data.)

    admin Reply:

    “Neo-cameralism is, if viewed in this light, a ‘political system system’, it is not a political system but a system for implementing political systems.” — Excellent (see also Nydwracu, above).

    Posted on March 22nd, 2014 at 8:31 pm Reply | Quote
  • Anomaly UK Says:

    The question of the inclusive fitness of identitarianism is what makes the fission not quite as clean as it might be.

    To put it another way, what distinguishes “disintegrative Social Darwinism through ruthless competition” from extreme libertarianism is the recognition that competition in political forms is not between individuals but between polities. What makes it reasonable to even describe it as right-wing rather than left-wing is the deduction or supposition that the product of such competition would resemble social forms commonly seen as “right-wing” more than it would resemble social forms commonly seen as “left-wing”.

    Gnon is the fundamental, essential concept to whatever-it-is-we-are. Joint-stock sovcorps, monarchies, secession of thedes, these are put forward as possible or likely consequences of the will of Gnon.

    My view is that what is fundamental is often not what is most important. A paleoreaction which has the force of Gnon behind it might conceivably succeed even without posessing any understanding of the nature of Gnon.

    While the fission in the intellectual movement might be between those who see the deepest fact as being the will of Gnon as revealed through competition, and those who see the deepest fact as being some specific tradition, the concrete, practical division has from the beginning been between those who see it as necessary to capture the elites, and those who see it as possible to replace or escape them. It seems possible to trace the latter division back to the former, but I’m not sure whether doing so adds anything useful to the debate.


    Lesser Bull Reply:

    Hear, hear.


    admin Reply:

    This is very insightful, and captures some of the conflict’s deep-structure brilliantly.


    Posted on March 22nd, 2014 at 9:21 pm Reply | Quote
  • Krisis Says:

    Aren’t all of Moldbug’s writings targeted at progressives?

    Conservatives will never get it. The only hope is the authoritarian leftism’s (China etc) inevitable turn to “neo-neo-liberalism”, “techno-commercialism”, whatever. Like the left became neoliberal because of “economic” reality, it’ll (soon or never) become neo-neo-liberal because of “biological” reality.

    It’s already happening: the new “fascists” in European politics (Front National, UKIP, PVV) are true liberals – that have been mugged by reality. Conservatism (of what now again?) is dead, not even a zombie.

    Now, is it important for NRx to look good (get rid of silly monarchists)? Does anyone really care? The only value of NRx is the deterministic analysis of contemporary history. To become a movement is to go Lenin on Marx. Whatever silliness that prevents NRx to become a social movement is good (for NRx itself, in its only unsilly appearance.)

    So yes, loose the name to the conservatives, keep the analysis clean and valuable.


    Posted on March 22nd, 2014 at 9:54 pm Reply | Quote
  • Brother Nihil Says:

    This is an interesting debate. It sounds to me like Land and Anissimov are poles apart — in occult terms, Anissimov is of the Right Hand Path, and Land is of the Left. I.e., Land is essentially a Satanist of the LaVeyan/Rand school, promoting capitalism, Darwinism and individualism uber alles, whereas Anissimov is arguing for age-old collectivist notions that fell out of favor in the West following the French Revolution. The missing link here is religion; as a Traditionalist, surely Anissimov appreciates its importance in preserving tribes, monarchies and social orders. Does he have one, or something that serves as such?


    Posted on March 22nd, 2014 at 9:57 pm Reply | Quote
  • hybrid short bus Says:

    @surely Anissimov appreciates its importance in preserving tribes, monarchies and social orders. Does he have one, or something that serves as such?

    the singularity?


    Posted on March 22nd, 2014 at 10:59 pm Reply | Quote
  • Rasputin Says:

    Just compare Goulding / Szabo’s / Vladimir’s critiques of Neocameralism, which were in many respects the high point of Neoreactionary (self-)critique, to that of Anissimov, who deals in gross oversimplification and misrepresentation, in order to advance his own pursuit of status, and in the process debases Neoreaction, collapsing it into some horrible and pointless white nationalist anachronism. When dealing with MM’s ideas, Anissimov’s essays are so lossy you have to assume he is either deliberately sabotaging them, or just retarded.

    And he believes in friendly AI. Please.


    Michael Anissimov Reply:

    Why does this political dialogue always devolve into ad hominem attack instead of essays in favor of neocameralism? Is the latter too difficult?


    Rasputin Reply:

    That’s not a denial.

    Anyway, In Neocameralism is Autism you say:

    “As we discovered in Iraq, occupying and policing a hostile area is more about culture and winning hearts and minds than it is about blowing things up or putting bullets in people. A soldier can speak the language, use a gentle touch, reason with people, and so on, where a robot can only serve to terrify and annoy. War is not just about an assault; it’s about knowing who is in charge in the local community, what their favorite tea is, who their friends are, what their relationship to the government is, and so on. Figuring this all out requires humans.”

    In How to Occupy and Govern a Foreign Country Moldbug states:

    “Of course, the conventional wisdom is that it would be completely impossible for Great Britain to occupy and govern Iran. It is even unthinkable for the US military to occupy and govern Iran… The conventional wisdom, of course, is the same inside the military as outside it: any such adventure is entirely impossible, and doomed to end in failure.

    This is because government is only possible with the consent of the governed. Ie: success is only possible if the British armed forces can win the hearts and minds of the Iranian people. But since the Iranian people are deeply nationalistic and committed to the liberty of a free and independent Iran, they will never accept recolonization by the hated British, their former imperial overlords.

    This is not thinking. It is cant. Anyone can train himself to utter these phrases, and many have. The modern military profession is especially diligent in inculcating this mindset, because its personnel are in an especially good position to see through it. But a lie is a lie. Its lifespan cannot be infinite. Truth seeps in through every crack.”

    No wonder you think Moldbug is dispensable, having dispensed with him you fall back on progressive lies, chasing hearts and minds and a broad base of support for frankly boring ideas.


    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 12:27 am Reply | Quote
  • Michael Anissimov Says:

    Instead of just “fission,” why not just make your case for neocameralism in more detail?


    admin Reply:

    There’s far more work to be done on Neocameralism, but failure to understand it is not the principal issue. From Moldbug, Foseti, and sophisticated critics (“Goulding / Szabo … / Vladimir”) we understand it quite well enough for it to function as an organizer — which it is doing.

    The essential point, as you fully realize already, is whether NRx commercializes government (through formalization of fungible sovereign property). Your opposition to such a project has nothing whatsoever to do with any haziness about its conceptual details.

    Why “fission”? — Disintegration is creation.


    Lesser Bull Reply:

    Explicating what it is in detail is not the same thing as making an argument for it.


    Alrenous Reply:

    A full, true description of a seatbelt is an argument to wear seatbelts, because it has that phrase, ‘life-saving device.’
    A full, true description of neocameralism is its best argument in favour. Of course, much disagreement about how good ‘best’ is…

    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 12:32 am Reply | Quote
  • Lesser Bull Says:

    I would rather not see the break happen because, as described by you, it sounds like a battle of mutual follies.


    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 2:05 am Reply | Quote
  • RiverC Says:

    Can we get signals and facts sorted out folks

    When a man issues a challenge he trash talks you. To come back at him with his misrepresentations of you/your position seems..



    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 2:06 am Reply | Quote
  • John F Says:

    “disintegrative Social Darwinism through ruthless competition is what the Far Right is all about.”

    Damit habe ich dich, Leftist!

    This is why to an actual reactionary, i.e., a conservative, y’all are just another subspecies of liberal wankery. I guess that’s what the prefix is for. It will be interesting to watch Anissimov’s blooming traditionalism collide with his transhumanism.

    Here fission is good because it will (finally!) force neoreactionaries to quit the anti-egalitarian and anti-establishment high-fiving and define the terms of their various concrete political perspectives. How ought we to live?

    Those with their eye fixed on the eternal AGON have little to do with those lovers of place and people, when push come to existential shove.

    P.S. I often wonder what sort of (apolitical) art neoreactionaries– or the speculative cultures envisioned by neoreactionaries– would produce.


    Peter A. Taylor Reply:

    Well, now that you mention it, I’ve been working on some religious iconography for the Church of Glaucon.

    I was thinking about something for Yet Another Space Alien Cult. Maybe an ASCII rubber chicken.


    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 2:49 am Reply | Quote
  • iParallax Says:

    Perhaps it’s just my easygoing nature, but I seem to be less concerned with drawing lines and borders than everyone else is these days. The Dark Enlightenment, NRx, the triad, etc, are all united in their opposition to the Progressive narrative, so for all their differences, I consider them all part of my community. Formalizing and defining the various theories will promote more precise and helpful discourse, and this youngish community will certainly change and define itself in time. I look forward to it, but I can’t say I see it as quite the priority that so many others do.


    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 2:59 am Reply | Quote
  • Peter A. Taylor Says:

    I think I understand what Admin means by Neocameralism, and why it is being criticized, but I don’t understand what alternatives are being offered. Monarchism? Ethnic separatism? Religious traditionalism? Are these distinct alternatives or a package deal?

    Can the Church of Gnon possibly be construed as traditionalism?

    I also share IParallax’s lack of enthusiasm for fratricide.


    spandrell Reply:

    Oh come on. You can only have so many brothers.


    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 3:42 am Reply | Quote
  • Stirner (@heresiologist) Says:

    I embrace the “no enemies to the right” approach to things, so it is my hope that these sorts of inevitable squabbles are resolved amicably, and not lead to actual Fission.

    The monarchist thread in the DE seems to be much more applicable to Europe than the US. Europe has a long legacy of Monarchical rule, while the US kicked Monarchy to the curb with only slight provocation in 1776.

    Monarchy simply isn’t going to happen in the US. At best, we could embrace some sort of celebrity King. A competent Obama, Kardashian, or Schwartzenegger, etc. Ugg.

    Neocameralism seems to be the only path forward for the US. If it is framed as federalism on steroids, it can be tied back into a long historical tradition. That has far more resonance in the US than some sort of Monarchy that has not been relevant for Americans for over 240ish years.

    Neocameralism can handle a monarchical domain in the patchwork, but I find it hard to fathom how a Monarch could cope with semi-sovereign patchwork areas in their kingdom. For the US, Neocameralism goes meta for the win.


    Konkvistador Reply:

    “I find it hard to fathom how a Monarch could cope with semi-sovereign patchwork areas in their kingdom.”

    New Detroit Sovereign Trading Company.


    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 5:43 am Reply | Quote
  • Porphy's Attorney Says:

    P.S. I often wonder what sort of (apolitical) art neoreactionaries– or the speculative cultures envisioned by neoreactionaries– would produce.

    I decided to take this on, because for some reason it struck me as important.

    Though you strive to make a distinction “what sort of (apolitical) art neoreactionaries. . .would produce,” its a cluttered thought in a way. Though I suppose it would make more sense to traditionalists (as such), and I suppose the outcomes would be similar.

    Because I don’t think there’s such a thing as “neoreactionary” art, certainly not in the same way there is art under the Modern Structure – where there simply isn’t any apolitical-art-as-such, at least insofar as it can be said to be “what sort of. . .art the cultures of the Modern Structure produces.” Except at the distained (by the modern artistic community) fringes.

    That this question arises in the mind of a conservative illustrates how totalitarian (and I mean that in the literal sense of the world) everyone under the modern structure has been taught to conceive things (though while the more conservative will add disclaimers like “apolitical,” when what they’re really wondering is just how political ideology will affect outcomes in, i.e. art): literally nothing can be conceived of without it being conceived of as a political question, and in the Modern Structure that ends up meaning informed by Cathedral thinking (as, indeed, art in the modern world is – by and large and for the vast most part, though no doubt someone will decide to quibble and invoke various examples, we know the dominant tendency), so the mind always conceives of everything as an analog to the totalism of the Modern Structure. When in practice probably not even Anissimov’s absolutist monarchs would as deeply affect all of artistic expression (though they would certainly commission art to decorate their abodes and the like).

    In any case if you’re trying to infer what sort of art would exist under any future regime from the writings of, well, lets just be honest and call them autistic (not artistic) nerds, of whatever political belief system, you’re probably going to come up with answers that allow you to scoff.

    I will point out though that Moldbug writes poetry, not just lengthy blog posts. Maybe you can infer what artistic expression under neoreaction would be like from his poetic works (which have never been my cup of tea, but, then, I’m an autistic nerd who doesn’t grock most poetry). Taking one data point allows one to infer anything, so I wouldn’t recommend this method.


    Porphy's Attorney Reply:

    tl;dr closing: Anyhow, the point is: there is no “neoreactionary art” the same way there is “Modern (Structure) Art,” so in that sense the question/musing is nonsensical, even with the qualifier “(apolitical)” attached as a disclaimer.

    There will be art, but not a neoreactionary counterpart to “Modern (Structure) Art” or “postmodern art” and the like.


    Misha Reply:

    Neocameralist art : ie art
    Commissioned by wealthy local powers for their own glorification ie the Mona Lisa.


    Porphy's Attorney Reply:

    Neocameralist art : ie art
    Commissioned by wealthy local powers for their own glorification ie the Mona Lisa.


    Stirner (@heresiologist) Reply:

    Henry Dampier dug this up on Pinterest:

    If Neo-Reactionary art could be this evocative, that would be a good thing.


    j. ont. Reply:

    This was touched upon some time ago, with regard to music. The results were… interesting. Quite a bit of metal, dubstep, drum and bass, classical, noise, drone—basically what you’d expect intelligent (perhaps reclusive or socially awkward) white males to listen to. This is in no way a slur (it would be to someone on the left). But with metal especially, I think we have a clear example of what Nick has described as the “crackerizing” force at work; white people, who could really be listening to something a little more authentically, historically white, instead fall back on kitschy, dare I say trashy, appropriations.

    But in any case, I’ve always been more interested in how art and music might be generated, or perhaps liberated, by certain elements of NRx thought. Aesthetic relativism is a disease that needs treatment—further investigation into the biology of appreciation and taste might be a good place to start (neuroaesthetics, basically). An acceleration of functionalism, understood as an artifact of industrialization (wherein the other two aspects of the Vitruvian Triad—”venustas” and “firmitas”—are folded into “utilitas,” which is here treated as economic function) might also be of interest.

    I’ve considered starting a blog about this several times. There is so much to be explored in those early architectural treatises regarding proportion, and I think much of it could be used as a critique of contemporary aesthetics. But at this point it feels premature—do we really need another niche NRx blog? Research I’m doing elsewhere, for an institution IRL, is letting me get some of this out of my system, but I encounter resistance regarding any sort of absolutism. We’ll see how long before I snap.


    spandrell Reply:

    We may not need a niche NRx blog, but a good blog on good aesthetics is always good to have. So don’t be deterred.


    Stirner (@heresiologist) Reply:

    I envision a band like Apocalyptica as a proto-NRx musical form. They are classically trained cellists, who got their start doing covers of Metallica songs….on cello. It boggles the mind, but it sounds amazing.

    Metallica’s One:

    Hall of the Mountain King

    This original composition breaks my heart and inspires me every time I listen:

    There is also the internet genre of “Epic Music”, much of which is derived from video game soundtracks. The granddaddy of the genre is Clint Mansell and “Lux Aeterna” from Requiem for a Dream.


    Stirner (@heresiologist) Reply:

    Whoops, didn’t mean to embed that video.

    j. ont. Reply:

    I don’t have any issue with metal per se—I used to be a metalhead, and some of that music is still very fun to listen to. But what exactly makes it NRx, aside from the fact that a lot of geeky white guys like it? And what separates Apocalyptica from every other gimmicky metal band out there? Metal is, after all, a genre that loves its gimmicks—the numerous metal bands that use “uncommon” instruments, the costume bands, the “themed” bands, the cover bands (a metal cover of THAT song—WHOA MAN!). I have a hard time seeing what makes Apocalyptica different (and even the name reminds me of other joke-but-not-exactly-a-joke metal bands, like Beatallica).

    And that’s not even touching on the stylistic stagnation of in the genre over the past ten years (maybe more). I struggle to find something really energetic or virile in the music, in spite of its masculine posturing. It feels very passive, very “safe.”

    The goal of a larger project regarding NRx aesthetics would be to offer a way out of the current aesthetic climate—aesthetic exit, so to speak. Right now, no such thing exists—at least in a concentrated or consolidated form. Any other effort would amount to selecting works of art and music for your “NRx playlist”—fun, maybe, but limited in its vision; you’d basically be developing a brand, which it not the goal. Time and time again you see this sort of thing on the left: the revolution needs its music! But we are not revolutionaries.

    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 5:49 am Reply | Quote
  • VXXC Says:

    Wealthy patrons have color revolutions in Europe as the latest status symbol. Wealthy patrons will follow the flatterers. Flatterers will follow power. Power is all in policy, that is to say politics. The rest are luxuries and indulgences.

    Serious people now will follow the asectic and focused. We’re decades or centuries from such indulgences being seen as a sign of frivolity and even corruption, for power will be closely watched for weakness or cracks for several lifetimes to come.
    Neocameral USA- that’s what Jeffersonian democracy was [is], as the administrative structure of Jeffersonian democracy still exists as does the Republic, the shortest path is Restoration.

    Simply clear away the managerial state and nullify the New Deal, that is nullify government by administrative law [Federal Register 1935, New Deal et al]. By Simply clear away I mean the concept is simple, the objective is simple. The execution is plenty of work for many men’s lifetimes, probably truncated lifetimes.


    Hurlock Reply:

    I tend to somewhat agree with this.

    I think Moldbug was too hasty in his dismissal of the War of Independence and this led to a generally poor analysis of the original republican structure of the US.


    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 9:57 am Reply | Quote
  • Mai La Dreapta Says:

    Which is the definitive feature of neocameralism, sovcorp or patchwork? If it’s the latter, then the white nationalists and Christian traditionalists etc. are all just agitating for our own patch, and all of our goals are complementary. If it’s the former, then it still seems that only hardcore traditional monarchists like Anissimov are excluded, since (as mentioned above), it’s quite likely and probably healthy to have a sovcorp which also includes and encourages some other identitarian thread among its people, be it racial or religious.


    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 12:11 pm Reply | Quote
  • Porphy's Attorney Says:

    1) If you don’t think wealthy patrons will follow a different set of fashions in a neocameral/neoreactionary setting, if you think they’ll still be following progressive/ecumenical postmillenialist (MM’s misnamed “UUism”) fashions in a neocameral/neoreactionary setting, then you disagree with moldbug. Which is fine, though it doesn’t seem to be what you’re saying, but if it is not, then you’re introduction of that point seems. . .off-point.


    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 2:13 pm Reply | Quote
  • Porphy's Attorney Says:

    2) j.ont: “basically what you’d expect intelligent (perhaps reclusive or socially awkward) white males to listen to. . .” the sentence should probably end with “now,” and as I sort of alluded to in my original rambling post, I’m not sure we should infer much if anything from what the aesthetic tastes of “our” group of writers are, now. Precisely because they/we are not the sort of people who will be artistic/aesthetic trend setters in any society. They/we are a subset type of intelligent people whose creativity is intellectual, not artistic.

    For example, the fact that I like listening to ’80s music probably says little if anything about what sort of music there would be in any given neocameralist polity (or set of polities).

    IMO, the proper response to this type of question (“what sort of art will our politics produce”) is that the question is nonsensical. . .outside of the Modern Structure (wherein everything becomes touched by “what sort of X will a given political belief produce, because everything in the Cathedral, nothing outside the Cathedral, nothing against the Cathedral”).

    Having a lengthy bull-session discussion trying to nail it down in detail, inevitably converging on the Schelling point of what the artistic preferences of the current modal group of “DE-oriented authors and commenters” are, is, IMO, wrongheaded.


    j. ont. Reply:

    I should clarify a few things (I’ve probably been rambling/obscure):

    1. We’re in agreement, that the sort of “art” produced in a neo-reactionary state would probably not be considered “art” as such, or necessarily fit within the dominantly Romantic parameters defining the contemporary art-world. But to call the question nonsensical is, I think, problematic. Before, say, the Renaissance, there was still something like what we call “art,” but it usually served a specific role—cultural, political, religious (especially religious). I would say that there will almost certainly be something equivalent post-cathedral (if such a thing is even possible). But it’s possible I’ve misunderstood your argument.

    2. To discuss aesthetics within a neo-reactionary context would not necessarily be to discuss the aesthetics OF neo-reaction, but to ask instead what neo-reaction can do for aesthetics. I’m more interested in that question, as I believe there are underlying principles in NRx thought that can easily be applied to aesthetics. Asking not what should be, but what is—and what is being ignored within conventional aesthetics. I speak hypothetically here; I suspect that the real solution might be an appeal no Gnon, to embrace reality and hop on a train that is already leaving (design, illustration, advertising, architecture, photography—forget about painting, sculpture, etc.).


    nydwracu Reply:

    Underlying principles in NRx thought that can easily be applied to aesthetics? Well, you’ll notice the influence from Marinetti. Futurism died young, and its principles could stand a revival.

    Unapologetic identification with an ethnic/cultural/national thede (rather than a class/caste one like so much of our art): in music, Dvořák and Bartók updated for the electronic age; in art, the Futurists (again the Futurists!), Breker, Speer, and the gory remains of Norman Rockwell, accelerated far past GOP kitsch, blasted free from any pretensions to normalcy, and cut down to thedish size. Classical banjo! Country metal! Spaceships in motion on the canvas, blasting toward the moon with battle-flag fire!

    Then there’s the Xenosystems aesthetic of the outside, which I think is best captured by the metal band Portal, though I suspect our host might disagree.

    There’s plenty else there that I’m not seeing, of course…

    (To cut off potential objection to the possibility of NRx aesthetics from the most hardcore of the apoliticists:


    j. ont. Reply:

    Well, accelerationist aesthetics is a whole other things—perhaps more of a meta-NRx concern (for those who are here because it, rather than the other way around).

    When I said “underlying principles” I was referring more to the tendency towards biological realist, cultural realism, historical analysis, with “outsideness” being a way of characterizing the affect this has on cathedral politics (usually realism is framed as abject, if not morally reprehensible).

    Lesser Bull Reply:

    Spengler says that Baroque music is the highpoint we in the West can ever reach, and that after the work of deconstructing and breaking it and testing its limits is over (whcih is what the triumph of NRx implies), then all that is left is doing more of the same.

    The idea that NRx would produce new kinds of interesting art buys into the Left belief that progress is possible, likely, and inevitable.


    j. ont. Reply:

    Oh, and finally, I should say that, while most people here are probably more interested in politics, history, philosophy, logic, and so on, I am in the unenviable position of being in a so-called “creative field.” As such, my creativity is perhaps more dominantly artistic than intellectual—this is why this problem interests me. So I’m not sure about “trend-setters,” but I certainly know a few people in the art and design world who would be interested in what’s going on here.


    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 2:14 pm Reply | Quote
  • Tardissimo Says:

    Neo-Feudal or White Nationalist romanticism — accompanied by ambitions for personal political power

    I don’t what “neo-feudal” is supposed to mean, or even “feudal”. Romantic nationalism on the other hand is quite the opposite of anything implied by a reactionary world view, as Erik von Kuehnelt-Leddihn, Moldbug etc. will tell you. “White” is ironically a concept most suited to people who believe in prosecuting white racism.

    One reason why this idea would occur to people, apart from motivated reasoning, is that the inverse of the popular morality of “hate racism” is some of form of racial authoritarianism, and this is often their (or indeed the detractor of this morality’s) only salient concept for reasoning about racial or ethnic issues. This makes it a good idea not to be dismissive of “racism” as a taboo, but the taboo and its inverse do not exhaust the space of possible social structures, including those that increase the average welfare of dusky folk. The people who would argue so have a mild resemblance to Nazis whose critics are all evil Judeo-Bolsheviks.

    I don’t view racial authoritarianism as one of the major future threats, because it has been thoroughly discredited; although I imagine that a crisis of faith in government due to automation, debt, aging, decadence etc. would lead to ethnic strife among other things. I would expect such a crisis to be precipitated less by critics than by a prolonged failure of the system to adapt in appropriate fashion to the objective conditions; but I appreciate that a responsible critic has to behave in a certain way. (Actually, having perceived its perversely fragile aspect, simultaneously overbearing and precarious, I feel to some extent protective of the system.)


    Tardissimo Reply:

    Let me also express puzzlement at people who “win” forms of imagined competition against indifferent opponents by default to foul play…


    admin Reply:

    Has there been any talk of “winning”? (If so, it certainly hasn’t come from me.)


    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 4:38 pm Reply | Quote
  • RiverC Says:

    From another perspective, both sides of this debate are simply saying,

    “The Far Right is all about SURVIVAL.”

    “No, The Far Right is all about survival.

    I wholly agree with all of this


    admin Reply:

    OK, that’s good.


    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 6:19 pm Reply | Quote
  • Porphy's Attorney Says:

    j. ont.: “To discuss aesthetics within a neo-reactionary context would not necessarily be to discuss the aesthetics OF neo-reaction, but to ask instead what neo-reaction can do for aesthetics.”

    I agree that is a more interesting question.

    “We’re in agreement, that the sort of “art” produced in a neo-reactionary state would probably not be considered “art” as such”

    Actually my point was distinct; there will be art, just not “neoreactionary art.” It’s a difference. Sure the current Cathedralite “art community,” in the Modern Structure, would not consider it art, but I don’t think we care about their opinion. Perhaps we really mean the same thing here, though.

    But this is why I felt it important to respond on this subject: I think that sort of approach to answering that sort of question (and certainly that sort of question itself) illuminates a very real misunderstanding of what “Neocameralist Theory” is all about and how it is supposed to *differ* from the Modern Structure under the Cathedral.

    A lot of people have read and been influenced by Moldbug’s “From Mises to Carlyle, my Sick Journey” post , but almost all of them seem to have forgotten this section of it:

    “When I went from Misesian to Carlylean, my vision of the ideal state did not change. I, and others like me, want to live and should be able to live in a liberal regime of spontaneous order, which is not planned from above but emerges through the natural, uncontrolled interaction of free human atoms. Hayek in particular, though no Mises, is eloquent here.”

    So, the answer to the question “what sort of art will our politics produce” is that “our politics” is not symmetrical to the totalizing politics of the Modern Structure. There will be art, but it will not be “neocameralist art,” it will simply be art.


    j. ont. Reply:

    Yes, I see what you mean now—and I think we are getting at the same thing. My interest in neuroaesthetics is the product of a desire to see biological aesthetic tendencies expressed freely, outside the influence of what Scruton calls “the cult of the ugly.” In the past century there has been a deliberate attempt on the part of certain artists, intellectuals, and institutions, to stymie any beautifying tendency in artistic practice—this becomes especially apparent in the 60s, for reasons that are not entirely obvious (though its chronology obviously coincides with a number of developments in other fields).

    My feeling is that much of the talent that, say, 200 years ago would have gone into painting art, has been filtered into more lucrative fields anyways—illustration, animation, design, fashion. It might be that we’ll see the husk of “high art” wither away in the next few decades—or it will expand its purview to include mediums that it had previously been poopooed. Major art galleries would easily be consolidated into museums, so it could go either way; it’s certainly hard to imagine these people opening their doors to the Brothers Hildebrandt.


    Malcolm Pollack Reply:

    “In the past century there has been a deliberate attempt on the part of certain artists, intellectuals, and institutions, to stymie any beautifying tendency in artistic practice…”

    This has accelerated; it is not just beauty in art, but also skill, that is the enemy. Both are profoundly anti-universalist; both are individualizing in the personal, Evolian sense, and therefore to be opposed.

    I spent decades of my adult life as a professional recording engineer. During my apprenticeship at a major New York studio in the 1970’s and early 1980’s, an elite guild of engineers made the recordings the world listened to, and made them in exclusive, expensive facilities. Skill, careful attention to the myriad details of our arcane craft, and the pursuit of aesthetic excellence were paramount.

    Not many years later, after technical revolutions in recording democratized the making of records, and coarser music began to dominate, my clients began to tell me “don’t make it sound too good!”

    Beauty discriminates, and so it had to go.


    j. ont. Reply:

    Handle has alluded to the unfortunate tendency in pop culture to celebrate thuggery (though I’m not sure those were his exact words). I’m not sure what sort of society idealizes coarseness—of sound, image, or character. The irony, of course, is that the rough “messthetics” of DIY punk culture ended up completely co-opted, properly assimilated into capitalist production (which probably wasn’t the intent of the punks—though politically its the same difference as far as I’m concerned).

    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 7:09 pm Reply | Quote
  • Porphy's Attorney Says:

    @Porphy’s AttorneyIn my opinion this point is important because while many people who identify with the NRx project have very deeply absorbed MM’s argument that the state cannot be limited and will have absolute power, a far fewer number of them have absorbed his argument that thus the key to escaping anything resembling the Modern Structure and its Cathedral is to set up an incentive structure so that states will not want or have any reason to behave in a totalistic fashion (which is not to say at all that no neocameralist polity will lack community-ness: indeed, it is quite probable that at least a significant plurality of neocameralist polities would end up with traditionalist social norms and interactions; there probably will be quite a bit of community, if – and to the extent to which – the NRx state does not behave in the totalizing manner of modern states).

    Now, we can all debate what sort of incentive structure would produce that end. But once one drops that end or forgets about it, one really no longer is part of “that thing of ours.” Your project may be a very worthy one and one worthy of reflection and commentary (much as MM found very much of worth in Laurence Auster’s writings), but there is “fission” because your project is a very different one then.

    (Same with the project of Restoring the Old Republic, a project I sympathize with, as if it could happen, it would least be an improvement on what we have now. But if that is one’s goal, then one also disagrees with fundamental MM / NRx analysis, which holds that however admirable aspects of USG1 or USG2 were, we got to USG4 from there, and you’ll have to explain why restoring USG1 won’t simply lead to the same failure-mode of progress – heh – to the Modern Structure, and/or why any fix/patch to the charter will insure that a neoUSG1 or neoUSG2 will prevent decay into progressive Cathedralism).


    VXXC Reply:

    Perhaps we need something more realistic than the Republic, say an American Monarch or a Friendly Super-Intelligent Artificial Intelligence. The Monarch would only have to kill, drive out or subdue a mere couple hundred million to achieve His Throne, quite possible. Insane but possible. The FAI of course doesn’t exist. But it’s still better than what’s in front of us, right? Still there’s nothing like another fresh start. I’m sure the world will be receptive.

    The argument we got here from there is rather like the 1% chance of harm means a project does not move forward rule. We all got here from somewhere, perhaps we should blame our parents and call it a day.

    Moldbug as Pell noted was not intending to be a Prophet of God who’s every word must be parsed over as if UR were the Koran. Moldbug also has to perform some interesting historical gymnastics to arrive at “here” from a “there” that doesn’t lead to the wrong door, that door having more truth then General Howe being a secret collaborator of George Washington and so on. In other words no we didn’t quite get here from 1776, we don’t even begin to get here until 1933 and we really don’t begin comprehensive ruin until 1993, and Robert Rubin. Once you begin to follow that trail it leads to…the Jawas and then Uncle Owen and Aunt Beru.

    The real question about Moldbug is ..why? It needed to be done, but….


    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 7:10 pm Reply | Quote
  • Nicholas Pell Says:


    While we have long tried to paper over the differences, it’s increasingly clear that neoreaction is essentially two ideologies welded together by a mutual antipathy toward Cathedralist democracy: The first is anarchist (or at least post-libertarian) and capitalist, the second is traditionalist and socialist. The lines are not clearly drawn, but they are there. Land has long said that the fissure was coming and in recent weeks it seems to have come to more of a head, particularly on More Right.

    Frankly, I can’t think of anything that I would welcome more than the TradSocs being led into the oblivion of Idaho, leaving the rest of us as an idiosyncratic form of anarchism with a particular hostility toward democracy and progressivism and, PS, perhaps actually influencing policy. Too much ressentiment for my liking in the TradSoc crowd, to say nothing of the “wannabe monarch” criticisms ring all too true in some cases.

    A couple of other points:

    Anissimov’s complaint that hostility toward his ideology is based on personality has some truth to it; That said, it strikes me as more than a little strange that someone who wants to be a leader of men and is constantly using “autism” as a shorthand method of dismissing ideas he considers “too rational” is crying foul because people refuse to entertain his ideas on personal grounds. All the good ideas in the world aren’t worth squat if no one will listen to them because they find your presentation off-putting.

    What’s more, More Right has an increasingly personality-based tone to it: viz. gratuitous personal attacks on Land in “A Real-Life Community is the Only Way to Put Our Ideas Into Action” (a telling title: no neocam, as far as I can tell, is saying that urban cosmopolitain commercialism is the “only way” to put our ideas into action), and appeals to purge people he finds personally distasteful (oh, the irony) in “Neoreaction and Social Order.” In the latter article Anissimov tips his hand, talking about how he has the qualities of a leader and, by the way, it doesn’t much matter who the leader is or whether or not you like him, just that there is one.

    This brings me to a basic critique of the monarchist set: If the average intelligent and thoughtful person in the world immediately reacts to your idea like you’re ranting about Skull and Bones at the bus mall, this might offer clue one that something about your idea is off. I have a hard time grokking how SovCorp is more “autistic” than IRL Game of Thrones cosplay in the Mountain West. One is easily grasped by anyone willing to put in the work and even has some prototypes in the Anglospheric East, the latter — reintroducing absolute monarchy several centuries after its time has, by all outward appearances passed — not only ignores the “neo” in “neoreaction,” it also fails to pass the smell test.

    On the other hand the erstwhile “techno-commercialist” (now apparently “neocameral”) wing has examples in Singapore, Hong Kong and Qatar, monarchists have… what? A movement in Romania? A propensity toward greater authoritarianism in Russia? That and some Tinkerbell logic about how “if we just believe hard enough” it’s possible. Add all this up and what you’ve got is a formula for personality cult, groupthink and a trajectory toward irrelevance.

    No thanks.

    Finally, one of the key tells of autism is the inability to take or make a joke. People who are taking every jot and tittle of what Moldbug said at face value rather than a giant troll with some pretty sublime truths nested within are showing everyone just exactly who is on the spectrum.

    Ought someone to write a point-by-point defense of neocameralism? Sure. It might or might not be a worthy ideological endeavor and it might or might not be a decent read. The existence of such a document is, however, by no means a prerequisite for rejecting Anisssmov’s Evolaite hijacking of neoreaction.

    As a post-script, I would posit the question: What precisely does Anissimov think is present in Moldbug worth keeping that isn’t already in reaction proper? If the answer is nothing or what basically amounts to minimal program, why play in the neoreactionary sandbox at all?


    Michael Anissimov Reply:

    A great deal of what Moldbug said is worth keeping, that’ll have to be a topic for a future post…


    admin Reply:

    An instant classic (blog post in itself).


    Posted on March 23rd, 2014 at 7:19 pm Reply | Quote
  • VXXC Says:

    I don’t think you can have progress [I’m using the valid sense of word] without people, and without a movement.

    Besides 2013 we’re pushing towards the world, now xeno is pushing back towards a niche of intellecutals? I think you’re burning bridges behind and before you.

    You want to know why you can’t have the intellectuals except for conversation, in some cases they’re only in it for the most interesting Dinner With Andre ever? Pure thought refined to high levels? Without any lowbrow proles beating about?

    The same reason you can’t have the elites. Because they’re invested in the Cathedral, and the Cathedral has arranged matters in money above all else – global bankruptcy settlement politics don’t allow everyone to have a chair when the Fiat music stops – the Cathedral has so arranged matters so none invested in the system dare either “move” past mere dream of escape but to attempt any change in the slightest. One doesn’t disturb the biggest House of Cards in History if one’s living in it, especially in the Penthouse. Your precious elites can’t escape any more than a mild mannered but tenured Professor. The Billionaire is now trapped far more securely than a common tradesmen [if he’s anglo. If he’s not he lives in fear of La Migra and votes Democrat. From Fear – now this is politics]. The Billionaire of course is rolling capitol like every other businessman, he has so much to lose. Even if he’s sitting on tens of billions he’s well aware it can be gone with the stroke of a pen.

    And that’s if he didn’t mob* up with the State to get it, and he probably did. Dirty laundry is quite a web, it’s why nothing is really going to happen over Ukraine.

    Making do with what you’ve got is the mark of a leader, or a follower. So are decisions.


    *mob up in the American context means Mafia. Or “Roof” in the case of our elites.


    Ex-pat in Oz Reply:

    “Making do with what you’ve got is the mark of a leader, or a follower. So are decisions.”

    Just so. And this IS the way it will play out.

    Who’d a thunk–character DOES have consequences!

    Well said, VXXC


    Posted on March 24th, 2014 at 1:01 am Reply | Quote
  • Dan Says:

    “Identitarianism, belonging, and community is what the Far Right is all about.”

    “This whole community is filled with trads who don’t give a flying fuck about neocameralism.”

    Said perfectly. Our government is already quite effective, for all its problems, because of technology. Even the maligned post office has a 99.999% successful delivery rate at low cost too.

    Meanwhile, I am a foreigner in my own country almost everywhere I go, here in the Maryland suburbs of DC. This sucks, and I would give up a huge amount to have a stable identity and stable community again.


    handle Reply:

    We’re practically neighbors if you’d care to link up sometime.


    VXXC Reply:

    Don’t judge the country by DC and environs like MD. I went to school there late 80s. MD is getting worse as the sicknesses of Baltimore and DC spread out.

    “Meanwhile, I am a foreigner in my own country almost everywhere I go, here in the Maryland suburbs of DC. This sucks,” – all true.

    We’re all going to give up a lot whether it’s to gain our nation back or lose everything…and harken not only can it get worse it’s now certain to… let’s choose gaining back our nation for our people as what makes the suffering we’ll now endure worth it. So many problems are occurring merely because we are weak minded, our only actual weaknesses. Among the things we’re certain to give up is rule of the smart, the root of our weak mindedness. Might as well get something back [like our nation and western civilization] for what we’ve lost and will lose.


    Posted on March 24th, 2014 at 2:49 am Reply | Quote
  • Ex-pat in Oz Says:

    This is an important debate for the philosophes– but to me seems too academic to engage in. I acknowledge the importance of the debate but also, as a 3rd level thinker (I can only hope!) on such topics, hope for some pragmatism. This smells like too much like Catharism to me to be comfortable.

    Can we get close to barely posing a threat to the Cathedral… before we implode?


    VXXC Reply:

    @Ex-pat in Oz

    “Can we get close to barely posing a threat to the Cathedral… before we implode?”

    HEE HEHE HAR HAR yes yes this

    Notice we’ve dropped off the radar screen of the Cathedral, and they’re right to ignore us. We are imploding on silliness the instant we began to make progress.


    Posted on March 24th, 2014 at 8:22 am Reply | Quote
  • Saddam Hussein's Whirling Aluminium Tubes Says:

    Admin’s analogy of Techno-Commercialism to the colonial government structures in the time of the East India company is absolutely correct and it provides a decisive clarification. This is like that time when one group stayed in Europe while the other group went and made their fortune in the New World.

    Techno-commercialism: disintegrative competition, dynamism
    Reaction: Stable order (as a value, if not a practical effect), hereditary position

    Reaction: Conservatism, tradition, the old ways
    Techno-commercialism: disintegrative competition, innovation

    Reaction: Personal authority, sacral Kingship, hereditary privileges
    Techno-commercialism: Corporate government, leaning towards the oligarchical, dynamic composition of the oligarchy, based on corporate politics and Social Darwinism

    Techno-commercialism: Linear history, progress towards the singularity
    Reaction: Cyclical history, Kali Yuga

    Reaction: Focus on the old country, the old people, saving the West
    Techno-commercialism: Abandoning the old, colonizing new spaces, both in the East and (you hope) in Space

    Reaction: Traditional social order, community, belonging, sense of place and rootedness, caste
    Techno-commercialism: modern social dynamism, freedom, meritocracy, rootlessness, atomization, Social Darwinism, a questionable future for certain social classes

    Techno-commercialism: Radically individualist
    Reaction: Conservatively communitarian

    Techno-commercialism: Cosmopolitan
    Reaction: Identitarian

    Techno-commercialism: Claims to end politics, ends up with Corporate Politics
    Reaction: Claims to end politics, ends up with Byzantine / Ottoman politics

    Reaction: Martial
    Techno-commercialism: Mercantile, post-Martial (Drones > Kshatriyas)

    Reaction: Disdainful of crass mercantile endeavors
    Techno-commercialism: See mercantile endeavors as primary

    Techno-commercialism: Focus on innovative governmental structures, so that people won’t need to be good.
    Reaction: Fails without good leaders

    Reaction: Conservative, want things to stay the same or go backwards
    Techno-commercialism: Disintegrative, dynamic, wants things to change constantly, Forward!

    Techno-commercialism: Ultra-Capitalism
    Reaction: Regular, caged capitalism (which to the the Ultra-Capitalist is socialism)

    Reaction: Religious
    Techno-commercialism: Wants to summon a machine god

    Reaction: About finding a way for humans to live spiritually fulfilling lives and then die and make a place for their children
    Techno-commercialism: About finding a way to summon a machine god to end humanity and/or about finding a way to live forever. Very few children.

    Techno-commercialism: Seeks to co-opt the current progressive merchant elite and put someone like Google guy in charge (horrifying to reactionaries)
    Reaction: Would require the creation of a new, legitimate, martial elite or the co-opting of someone like Putin (horrifying to techno-commercialists)

    Reaction: Romantic lost cause
    Techno-commercialism: Disturbingly plausible, in the sense that somebody like Google guy was probably going to end up on top anyway, and he might listen to those who flatter him.

    So, I’ve got good news and bad news. The good news is that you’ll probably get a lot of what you want in the future. The bad news is that you’re not reactionaries, not even a little bit. You’re classical liberals, it was just a little bit obscured because you are English classical liberals, rather than American or French ones. Hence the lack of interest in revolutions. The modern equivalent of those East India Company classical liberal guys.

    So, it’s your choice. You can certainly keep the neo-reactionary label and turn it into something like the “neo” in “neo-conservative” where “neo” means “pwned”. But that will mean that the traditionalist conservatives and WNs keep wandering in. Or you can cut the cord and complete the fission.

    Anyway, at this point we should probably go our separate ways and start plotting against each other. Thanks for some enjoyable reading.


    spandrell Reply:

    To the extent that they don’t identify themselves as classical liberals it mudt be said that classical liberals were also agains absolutism and for representative government and later democracy, while Moldbuggites are quite content without political rights.

    Which is what this neoreaction thing is about: agreeing that parliaments and voting suck.


    admin Reply:

    That is a truly superb tabulation, so I’m deeply distressed by the thought it’s intended as a ‘Good Bye’ note.

    While I think you are frighteningly accurate in your description of the fission, it doesn’t seem to me that it can proceed without complication. Neither tendency will find itself as self-contained as it might think, or hope, and each has ample historical precedent for failure through over-confident maximalism. ‘Reaction’ and ‘Neo-‘ are each exactly as you say, and yet each will find itself re-entangled in the other, if it wants to survive. Time-spirals are neither cycles or smooth escape trajectories, and they describe the ultimate structure of historical time.


    Alfred Reply:

    This is my problem, so far. I find myself agreeing with BOTH sides more than I disagree with either. Maybe I don’t know enough yet, to take a side. But, I’m of the opinion, so far, that whichever one we end up with (monarchy or neocameralism) will be the right one, because it will be the one that has been adopted (proving either its practicality or the strength of its leaders; both being good enough reason to go along).

    The point is that I’m distressed with this fission. Certainly, it may need to come; but doesn’t it stand that our similarities in anti-demotism currently outweigh our differences in what we believe the end result should be. After all, aren’t we ALL anti-revolution?


    Kevin C. Reply:

    @Saddam Hussein’s Whirling Aluminium Tubes

    Indeed. Especially, this:

    “Focus on innovative governmental structures, so that people won’t need to be good.”

    That gets to the core of one of my major objections to the “neocameral” project: the idea that the messy problems of history and politics, and the “crooked timber of humanity”, can somehow be solved by “aligning incentives” in an engineering project (the sort of hubris only an (ex-)libertatian software engineer would dream up), and where one can deal with the failure of humans to be rational utility-maximizing homo economicus by dreaming up ridiculous technological patches like “cryptographic weapon locks”. One can no more centrally plan a governmental system, a society, or a culture than one can an economy; the idea that one can write and codify a power structure, like one writes code, is perhaps one of the more terrible delusions propagated by the American secession.

    And to quote from T.S. Eliot’s “Choruses from the Rock”:
    “When the Stranger says: “What is the meaning of this city ?
    Do you huddle close together because you love each other?”
    What will you answer? “We all dwell together
    To make money from each other”? or “This is a community”?

    Oh my soul, be prepared for the coming of the Stranger.
    Be prepared for him who knows how to ask questions.

    There is one who remembers the way to your door:
    Life you may evade, but Death you shall not.
    You shall not deny the Stranger.

    They constantly try to escape
    From the darkness outside and within
    By dreaming of systems so perfect that no one will need to be good.
    But the man that is shall shadow
    The man that pretends to be.”


    admin Reply:

    Sure, all we need is a way to make people good, and we’re saved.

    The Poem is excellent, but I don’t think it’s saying what you’re trying to get it to say.


    Peter A. Taylor Reply:

    Care to elaborate?

    Posted on March 24th, 2014 at 9:30 am Reply | Quote
  • Rasputin Says:

    Personally, I find establishing the starting conditions for auto-catalytic, generative evolution ever so slightly more exciting as a call to arms than the preference of not having black people for neighbours.

    As I have said before, the limits of Neoraction are that it is just looking for someone to run the pig farm a bit better. Anything that doesn’t prepare the ground for accelerationism is just another flavour of retardation.


    A Reader Reply:

    I have black people for neighbors. A bunch of them. Don’t underestimate the appeal of not having black people for neighbors.


    VXXC Reply:

    Sadly true.


    Posted on March 24th, 2014 at 11:48 am Reply | Quote
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  • vimothy Says:

    @Saddam Hussein’s Whirling Aluminium Tubes

    An astute comment.


    Posted on March 24th, 2014 at 7:21 pm Reply | Quote
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  • Karolyn Krishna Tillman Says:

    Interesting. I’m looking for a community myself and am inclined toward Enlightened Monarchy as exemplified by Lord Rama, Yuddhisthira Maharaja and all the great Saintly Kings described in the Ramayana and Mahabharat.

    I’d like to join you guys and I can act in capacity as “brahmin” – that is a spiritual guru to the Royal Court to ensure your rule is ethical and in keeping with the spiritual progress of your subjects.

    Hare Krishna!


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