Popcorn Activism II

The whole of this analysis (from the Left) is highly relevant to the Outsideness Strategy. One could even be forgiven for thinking it is already being pursued:

The presidency is extremely important, of course. But there are also thousands of critically important offices all the way down the ballot. And the vast majority — 70 percent of state legislatures, more than 60 percent of governors, 55 percent of attorneys general and secretaries of state — are in Republicans hands. And, of course, Republicans control both chambers of Congress.

With the final paragraph comes the money quote:

But the much more significant question facing the [Democratic] party isn’t about the White House — it’s about all the other offices in the land. The problem is that control of the presidency seems to have blinded progressive activists to the possibility of even having an argument about what to do about all of them. That will change if and when the GOP seizes the White House, too, and Democrats bottom out. But the truly striking thing is how close to bottom the party is already and how blind it seems to be to that fact.

If the GOP take the presidency, of course, they reset back to homeostatic bi-polar alternation, degenerative quasi-equilibrium, and democratic functionality — which is disaster. So for the GOP, the question is how to stay out of the White House (without seeming to want to), while incrementally subverting the central organs of national executive power. When the decay process reaches the stages where large burning chunks are falling off, it’s critical that there’s a Democrat in the Oval Office to explain on cable news how it isn’t ze fault.

Yglesias seems to think the Republicans might do something with the presidency of right-wing significance, which is (of course) laughable on its face. The Union Executive exists to take the coming fall, and nothing else. With that kept firmly in mind, everything can go swimmingly.

October 20, 2015admin 27 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Pass the popcorn


27 Responses to this entry

  • Kgaard Says:

    The one useful thing a Republican president could (and probably would) do is slash the corporate tax rate. It needs to fall at least 10 points. That would be very pro-growth. As for the rest of what the Republicans are about … yeah … they suck.

    Case in point: there was a big piece front-and-center on page 1 of the Washington Post yesterday about prisoners being saddled with ever-growing child support payments, even when the mother has taken up with another man. Republicans are against reforming this practice (which is pretty much evil, seems to me). But the left seems to be interested in doing something about it (or it wouldn’t be on the cover of the Post). Perfect example of Republicans being dooshes.



    michael Reply:

    yes its a good example of them sacrificing the possible for the perfect, its multistep strategy that refuses to concede moral / rational ground at the expense of political ground. thinking ultimately its a losing proposition. The dems have no problem with patching failed prior policy with new policy that address only unintended consequences ad infinitem in fact this serves them well as its often the ratchet itself. whats curious is the most intellectually capable seem no more, even less able, to see several moves ahead. which supports MM thesis that leftism is a religion and conservatism is reason.HBD expanded that religion is status and inclusion signalling which trumps our reason the way our other senses construction of the world trumps the world as it is.nrx eschews populism and hopes to signal enough elites to change religions hoping the proles will emulate the evangelized elites. its probable certain memes within religions are more effective than others which do the left use [altruism/ social cohesiveness] which does the right think can trump that which isnt populist? the trichotomy seems too suggest a reincarnation of medieval catholic religion and patriarchal social structure from family to head of state, Genetic kinship. and enlightened self interest greed markets etc. There is actually already a successful model of a group forged on ancient religious affiliation, reinforced by genetic affinity with capitalistic meritocratic realism for values. But how could we ever get the elites to adopt this system?


    Posted on October 20th, 2015 at 2:15 pm Reply | Quote
  • Kwisatz Haderach Says:

    The dems don’t need to change strategies to win. They simply need to allow the ongoing process of demographic replacement to come to fruition. It will happen no matter which party is in office, because both parties want to elect a new people.

    Since demographic replacement supervenes on all other issues, and dwarfs them in importance, I can’t get on board with your accelerationist / outsideness plan.


    admin Reply:

    So what’s the alternative plan?

    (Anyway, as long as Google and the NSA go with the OS, I’ll accept your disapproval graciously.)


    Kwisatz Haderach Reply:

    And I appreciate your graciousness ;).

    I don’t really have a plan, so right now I’m going with the default end-game strategy when my side is down material: complicate the position, stall, and wait for my opponents to make a mistake. In this case our opponents don’t even realize that they are in the cleaning up phase of the game and are unwittingly aiding us in our efforts to complicate.

    Trump (and attendant cryptoeugenics) is the stalling strategy for American tech-comms. Curbing helot immigration / baby subsidies and clinging to the US status as the marginally better place (for productive people) than the Western European maelstrom will be in the coming Detroitification of those lands seems like the play. One day we might productively employ leftist altruism to open the doors to Boers and Bavarians. The USA is structurally ready for patchwork, and as long as it remains demographically sound, the time will come for it. There is a race on: demographic replacement against political crack-up. If the crack-up happens first we win.

    Could Merkel’s Boner could be the decisive mistake? If not, just wait. They’re bound to make one.


    michael Reply:

    amen brother.
    its as if NRX doesnt get this any more than the republicans despite the whole HBD meme. One puts their hope in smith and locke the other jesus. But I cant for the life of me understand why they, and the cathedral -all the brilliant minds in the world cant see why turning western civilization over to the third world is not an incredibly bad idea.They might just as well weaponize ebola.


    Posted on October 20th, 2015 at 4:04 pm Reply | Quote
  • Popcorn Activism II | Reaction Times Says:

    […] Source: Outside In […]

    Posted on October 20th, 2015 at 5:56 pm Reply | Quote
  • Froude Society Says:

    The Democrats and their Labour colleagues have such a degree of Democracy idealism that they refuse to admit many of the political portions of the beast. It’s a Dewyesque trust in the capital ‘D” Demos that they will triumph by Good Faith alone. One sees this in Bernie Glassberg refusing to do “negative campaigning”. They won’t look upon the beast they worship. Try asking the blue pills why the Democrats shouldn’t make a single party state, the answers are as unclear as they are humorous.

    I really do fear a Republican presidential victory, especially of Trump, would relegitimize Democracy in a most saddening manner. Bernie is exactly the type of guy who would hasten Obama’s policy of imperial degradation. Imagine him talking to General Suleimani or the Saudis, a box of laughs and another of chaos. Also the big bootlylicious blank checks he’d write to the bureaucracy. Remember Moldbug wrote a post cheering both Obama’s elections, we no reason to change from that sentiment. The Red Government has too many low hanging prestige fruits they could gather on the vine, four year extra will see them rot.


    Grotesque Body Reply:

    Sanders victory = emboldened Putin and four years of #blacklivesmatter taking the mic. I don’t think there is enough popcorn in this solar system.


    Posted on October 21st, 2015 at 12:27 am Reply | Quote
  • cassander Says:

    This is where I must part ways with so much NRX thinking. Let’s assume we’re right about everything we say. If so, we almost certainly can’t fix things, the cathedral is just too entrenched. But if we can’t fix things, the correct response isn’t to hope that things go to hell in a hurry, it’s to hope that they don’t fall apart right away so we can still enjoy life before things go to hell. “we’ll make things worse so they can get better” is the leftwing MO, not the right wing.


    Grotesque Body Reply:

    “But if we can’t fix things, the correct response isn’t to hope that things go to hell in a hurry, it’s to hope that they don’t fall apart right away so we can still enjoy life before things go to hell.”

    Thinking > hoping.


    D. Reply:

    I’ve always been too much of a pessimist to think that collapse is imminent. If a fall happened now, there might be enough sources of strength left to rebuild. The longer decay continues, the less the likelihood of recovery after a catastrophic event. Hoping to forestall collapse until after one’s death in order to enjoy life in the present is the selfish view.


    the man whose blood was replaced with worry Reply:




    Grotesque Body Reply:

    Step 2 is where passivism fails. If you’re a lame duck and have to wait to ‘accept power’ granted by someone else instead of seizing it, then the power is not really yours and nothing good can come of persuading oneself otherwise.

    Of course, we associate the more proactive and necessary measure of ‘seizing power’ with the Lenins and the Maos, and we all know where that leads.

    (Not really. NRx would do well to remember that the Deng Xiapings, the Lee Kuan Yews and Elon Musks aren’t passivists by any means)


    the man whose blood was replaced with worry Reply:

    My reading of it has always been that, in becoming worthy, power will flow to you as a matter of course, rather than being seized through a kind of forced/aesthetic means (eg. democracy, revolution).

    The crux of Moldbug, as best I can tell, is a serious thinking-through of the implications of actual integrity—that is, continuity of, say, power, present always *as* power, where processes are what they are, and are unbeholden to aesthetic nonsense, proceeding from one manifestation to the next without forced cataclysmic jumps. In this way he has something in common with Nietzsche:

    “But what is wanted? I ask once more. If one wants an end, one must also want the means: if one wants slaves, then one is a fool if one educates them to be masters.”

    Grotesque Body Reply:

    “My reading of it has always been that, in becoming worthy, power will flow to you.”

    What are you basing that on? Because it feels good to believe so? Unless you circularly define ‘worthiness’ in terms of capacity to attain power, there’s much in history that shows the unworthy very often attain power.

    Nobody said anything about aesthetics. The point is simply that Moldbug’s passivism has nothing but hand waving to say about how the acquisition of power is supposed to follow from ‘worthiness’. Not to mention that ‘worthiness’ is actually indeterminate until it is proven AFTER acquiring power.

    the man whose blood was replaced with worry Reply:

    “Aesthetics” here means an obstruction of flow—ie. representation rather than becoming.

    Let me explain what I mean. Capitalism works regardless of ideological cheerleading, in the same way that computers give you an advantage over your competition, whether you’re “pro-computer” or not. All the ironic detachment present in contemporary pop culture is completely irrelevant—no-one cares if you “mean it” when you go to work—the job does what it needs to do.

    Similarly, my reading of Moldbug (and it may be a problematic reading—I’m open to that) was the “worthiness” here meant something like “modes of operation which are uncontroversially effective in themselves.” If you effectively cultivate such modes of operation, the results will speak for themselves. It’s actually a patchwork-like approach to individual effort, in the sense that you don’t need to attach yourself to a big transcendent movement.

    The issue with something like, say, Communism, is (amongst other things) that we can’t exactly prove it’s going to work until we go all-in and have our revolution. The insistence is that “it’ll work—we promise”—but we’ve seen how that’s gone. The problem isn’t necessarily Communism—the problem is that certain transcendental political ideologies try to introduce radical breaks in state operation. My reading (again, possibly wrong) is that Moldbug id advocating something non-violent, non-revolutionary, gradual.


    admin Reply:

    ‘Gradual’ probably isn’t available as an option.

    Grotesque Body Reply:

    Moldbug associates the right with Order and the left with Chaos. He recognises that violent revolution hic et ubique is a tactic of left and degenerates into Chaos. Therefore he advocates a Restoration as opposed to Revolution. However, my suspicion is that although passivism may temper revolutionary tendencies in a gradual, mostly normative, way, it is no way to achieve a Restoration. As I pointed out, Xiaoping and Yew didn’t sit around cultivating their “worthiness” in the patient expectation that authority would be handed to them, as though politics is some kind of beauty pageant.

    Posted on October 21st, 2015 at 1:09 am Reply | Quote
  • sweet EMP of reset Says:

    trump/clinton horror show


    Posted on October 21st, 2015 at 2:23 am Reply | Quote
  • John Says:

    It would make a good comedy. The democrats realise what the republicans are doing! Who can have the worst candidate?! Starring Zach Galifianakis: Outsideness. Coming Summer 2016.


    Posted on October 21st, 2015 at 8:00 am Reply | Quote
  • TheDividualist Says:

    Hi Nick,

    It is worth noting Orban in Hungary is already doing a variant of this – not exactly the same because the country is the size of Indiana and practically a city-state with farmlands so does not really need to disintegrate any further.

    The variant is, he is obviously not giving up the executive, largely because the leftie opposition is so unpopular and incompetent there is nobody to give it to, and basically the opposition does not even seem to want it much, but they are capturing everything else. Agro land. Judge positions. Bureaucracy. Media. Many laws are changed into fundamental laws, meaning only supermajority can change them and they are sure the lefties will never have that. They are setting up themselves for a situation where having the executive does not matter.

    There is also a lesson here in the GOP. Orban cannot execute the most important part of your plan, the give up the executive, because the lefties are incompetent, weak, unpopular and basically don’t even really want it. So what if US Dems become like that? In Hungary lefties were already bemoaning 15 years ago that they “cannot find a Tony Blair” – i.e. someone as a candidate who looks remotely like a leader. What if US Dems run out of these folks too? This gamma boy: http://archivum.magyarhirlap.hu/sites/default/files/field/image/2014/05/19/mesterhazy-friss.jpg was once leftie opposition party leader because nobody else wanted to make a clown of himself and take the job. What if the US Dems get in the same position?

    What if Dems execute this strategy earlier? I mean they ALREADY “captured” the universities, the media, the support of the software industry… etc. all they have to do is to be incompetent?


    admin Reply:

    There are strong personal incentives for capturing the presidency — $$$ millions in speaking fees and other goodies for life. A party-based arms-race to avoid national executive office should open it up to increasingly absurd, corrupt clowns. Everyone wins!


    Erebus Reply:

    Think it can get much worse? The clowns vying for the Presidency are already so blatant about their eagerness to sell their services to the highest bidder that they’re practically handing out auction paddles.

    Anyway, from what little I’ve seen and heard, Orban seems competent. Seems like he’s running a tight ship. I don’t think that the Republicans, as an organization, are smart or competent, they lack visible leadership, and I don’t think that they can formulate or execute a meaningful strategy. The OS is utterly beyond them, I’m sure…


    TheDividualist Reply:

    But will leftie prez candidates need Dem support forever or they may just run on Cathedral, Twitttumblr support?


    Posted on October 21st, 2015 at 11:19 am Reply | Quote
  • michael Says:

    “No US state is so left-wing as to have created an environment in which business interests are economically or politically irrelevant. Vermont is not North Korea, in other words.”
    – I guess they didnt think anyone was listening


    Posted on October 21st, 2015 at 2:36 pm Reply | Quote
  • This Week in Reaction (2015/10/25) | The Reactivity Place Says:

    […] from Land: “Yglesias seems to think the Republicans might do something with the presidency of right-wing signifi…“. […]

    Posted on October 27th, 2015 at 8:46 am Reply | Quote

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