Quote note (#158)

Erik von Kuehnelt-Leddihn (1994):

In De Regimine Principum (II.3) of St. Thomas, we find a pronounced antipathy toward traders whose profession he considered immoral. In the period between the two World Wars, the old ban on usury, officially lifted only in 1918, was propagandized in certain Catholic circles by “anti-capitalist” enthusiasts, including myself. Today I am thoroughly ashamed of my immature presumption, but, like many among us, I was then honestly convinced that there simply must be a third way. Of course, there is none. The means of production belong either to individuals, to groups of individuals, or to the state which simply conducts state capitalism. (“Publicly” owned enterprises exist on paper only, and “society” always remains an abstraction. It cannot own anything.)

April 4, 2015admin 29 Comments »
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29 Responses to this entry

  • Artxell Knaphni Says:

    @NL
    “The means of production belong either to individuals, to groups of individuals, or to the state which simply conducts state capitalism. (“Publicly” owned enterprises exist on paper only, and “society” always remains an abstraction. It cannot own anything.)”

    {AK} ‘Abstraction’ is involved in all conceptualisation.
    The very notion of ‘immanence’ is conditioned by it.
    If the notion of ‘public ownership’ is vitiated by the ‘abstract’ mediations of formal documentation, is not its corollary and constitutive notion of ‘the individual’, not equally ‘subject’ to the same legislative and systemic abstraction?
    ‘Abstraction’ just means ‘withdrawn’.
    What is, or isn’t, ‘withdrawn’, very much depends on where you’re standing; how you’re thinking; on what counts as (the) ‘given’ for you.
    If you’re talking about polity, you’re always dealing with the concept of psyche, with the hysterical inflations that accompany kapitalism & its “market-driven dreams”; it’s the ‘core’ religion.

    The variable of ‘ownership’ is supervenient on conceptualisations of ‘propriety’; conceptualisations of ‘propriety’ are rendered variable because any notion of ‘worldly propriety’ is inherently mediated by ‘subjective’ & ‘consensual’ representations; thus, all the valorisation of ‘rites of agreement’; the fetishising of the contractual, whether formal or informal; the anxieties of ‘group’ or ‘class’ membership; the reflexive valorisations of transgression; in short, the full spectrum of sociopolitical nonsense & disingenuousness exemplified, especially, by the USA. If, as Rorty used to say, the “world” is “well lost”, how can you get the “Outside in” over the barrier of chaotic ‘consensualities’, which, “Neoreaction” only seems to strengthen? If “reality” is as “dark” as you say, how can you sell that as a viable alternative?
    Good luck trying to sort that out.

    [Reply]

    existoon Reply:

    The address space of Outside is ambiguity and error. Since I support NRx in its sincere attempts of addressing this libidinal matter to the ultimate segfault, I also support the prophecy of (block:) chaining the human Prometheus to asteroid rock in Outer Space (the rock is actually just an measurement error of decrepit instruments).

    [Reply]

    Artxell Knaphni Reply:

    @existoon

    [existoon]: “The address space of Outside is ambiguity and error.”

    {AK}: According to which OS?

    [existoon]: “Since I support NRx in its sincere attempts of addressing this libidinal matter to the ultimate segfault”

    {AK}: Such a religious belief in this mechanics of virtual nostalgia assumes an OS as a real & fixed Romulan tradition, adversarial or otherwise. Step out of the mirage of the fallen, it’s only a hologram. “Out s(ide)in”

    [existoon]: “I also support the prophecy of (block:) chaining the human Prometheus to asteroid rock in Outer Space (the rock is actually just an measurement error of decrepit instruments).”

    {AK}: Isn’t every measurement?
    All in search of ‘my sure mentations’ (mea sure ment)

    “chaining the human Prometheus”: Pro me; the us?; for you?; consensuality is an object?”; Modernity, as so many Medusas staring at each other, at themselves; the choral consensuality of s(tone)s. Lunar ‘toons’.

    [Reply]

    existoon Reply:

    Outside the Shell, there is no OS. There isn’t even a MMU, but (technomic) NRx seems to think they’ve found one plundering the graves (Hi, Gnon). IMO, all they’ve found is mold, bugs and propriety. Alien is awake, they want to tie it up with duct tape and I’m just saying they have my sympathy …

    Posted on April 4th, 2015 at 11:48 am Reply | Quote
  • existoon Says:

    I wonder what he thought of medieval guilds and their approaches to property, accountability and other liabilites. There are a lot of contemporary medieval guilds on Github, one of them is called Urbit 😉

    But I really don’t think any of contemporary or historical guilds operate(d) on neoreactionary or neocameralist principles … rather the opposite, they work(ed) because fork is not an exit and address space is not property

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 4th, 2015 at 11:59 am Reply | Quote
  • Brett Stevens Says:

    The means of production belong either to individuals, to groups of individuals, or to the state which simply conducts state capitalism.

    Or we could give them to aristocrats for safe-keeping, as worked for many centuries.

    A sickness in an order does not disprove the order, but means it needs restoration.

    Modern people, being dumb as bricks, confused sickness with failure and threw out the only protection that existed against their perpetual exploitation.

    [Reply]

    Hurlock Reply:

    “Or we could give them to aristocrats for safe-keeping, as worked for many centuries.”

    What?
    They were not “given” to aristocrats, they were taken by them, either by force or bought off and they did not “safe-keep” them, they OWNED them. So it was exactly what he is describing, ownership by individuals or groups of individuals.

    [Reply]

    Deogolwulf Reply:

    The liberal-modern misconception of ownership, according to which the capitalist seeks to uphold its privacy and the communist seeks to abolish it, was alien to feudal society (as it is to reality); and in the sense, or rather, the nonsense of that misunderstanding, it is true to say that the feudal lord owned nothing.

    Ownership was understood as authority and trusteeship over a thing and not misunderstood as an individualistic and liberal-private right of exclusive use and disposal. Therein the premoderns grasped, at least implicitly, the nature of ownership, namely, that it is a construct of society that exists and functions only in and through a real social-traditional context, a context not just of the moment, therefore, and certainly not coterminous with the individual, but encompassing the past, the future, as well as wider contemporaneous society.

    To speak of a social construct is not to speak of some arbitrary thing. Property and other institutions, as well as society itself, belong as much to nature as do rock-formations and electrical charges. But take away the social from the social construct, and what are you left with? Why, an arbitrary thing! — a construct of the individual whim, indefensible in epistemic objectivity, defensible perhaps by might but not by right. Is it any wonder, then, that the status of ownership is so precarious and contentious in modernity, a battleground as it never was before? Nor will it do to suggest that the rivals to capitalism, namely, socialism and communism, are perverse irruptions into modernity from some other place, rudely threatening to disturb its advance; they are all rooted in the same ground — or perhaps even, as Marx and Engels contended, capitalism is the ground of socialism and communism.

    However it may be, I do not think it any accident that our grip upon what we own has become precarious just as the conception of ownership has tended in abstraction to absoluteness. (In view of limit-horizons, we’re back again to Shigalov’s conclusion.) The modern individualist, for his part, should at least reckon upon the doom of ownership that is written into his all-too-abstract and nature-defying misconception of it. Without the social-traditional context, which is its natural context, there is no ownership; and what weakens the bonds of society and tradition — e.g., individualism — weakens the bonds of that which makes ownership possible.

    Contrary to what Erik von Kuehnelt-Leddihn, Hans-Hermann Hoppe, and the like say, aristocratic and kingly government was not private — at least not in the sense in which such people mean it. That sense is alien to it, a projection indeed of modern alienation.

    [Reply]

    Hurlock Reply:

    I never denied the concept of private property is anything else but a social construct. Indeed I have talked about this in a post of mine.

    To say that ownership is “trusteeship” is very vague. What does it mean? Can the owner do what he wants with the property in his “trusteeship”? Who gives him that trusteeship? If there is no one giving him said property why would we call it “trusteeship” rather than private ownership?

    Deogolwulf Reply:

    “I never denied the concept of private property is anything else but a social construct.”

    I wasn’t suggesting that you had denied it; nonetheless I am glad to hear you rationally commit yourself against the silly belief that society is an abstraction (for, of course, abstractions do not construct anything).

    “To say that ownership is “trusteeship” is very vague.”

    True, and whilst I myself am doubtful about the appropriateness of the term “trusteeship”, I am vague for two reasons. First: I am certain that the premoderns were as vague in their understanding of ownership as we are clear in our misunderstanding of it. Second: I seek to give only a rough sketch of the character of the premodern understanding of ownership whilst avoiding as much as possible the danger of importing modern preoccupations. (Originally I wrote “Ownership was understood as something like authority and trusteeship over a thing”.) Being vaguely right is better than being razor-sharply wrong. More pertinent to the first reason: it is better to be vague about a complex reality than to simplify and thus destroy it for the sake of clarity.

    “Can the owner do what he wants with the property in his “trusteeship”?”

    Of course not. But that’s rather to the point. The misconception of property as a thing with which the property-owner can do anything he pleases is a modern piece of abstract and utopian silliness; yet though no-one has ever owned or will ever own property in this sense, nonetheless this misconception of property, this abstract silliness, stands as an unstated premise in many a liberal argument (e.g., it’s my property, therefore, I can do what I like with it) and drives the afflicted to condemn all present and past conditions that stand as restrictions upon the realisation of this misconception. Thus the modern idea of property never serves as a description of the nature of property, but always as a prescription for perpetual revolution. Utopia, of course, is never reached.

    vimothy Reply:

    “Without the social-traditional context, which is its natural context, there is no ownership; and what weakens the bonds of society and tradition — e.g., individualism — weakens the bonds of that which makes ownership possible.”

    A similar criticism could be made of the particularly libertarian tendency to imagine the ideal social order as a sort of minimally managed economic zone, fully described by the simple aggregation of freely contracted rights and obligations over economic goods. Such an arrangement requires the existence of a prior order in which these institutions have meaning:

    “[T]he very possibility of free and open contract presupposes a sufficient social order, not because it would otherwise be impossible to enforce contracts (although that too is true), but because without social order the very notion of an individual committing himself, through a promise, would not arise. Already we have supposed shared institutions and a conception of human freedom, which could hardly have their origin in the very practice of contract which they serve to make possible.” (Roger Scruton, The Meaning of Conservatism)

    existoon Reply:

    What worked for many centuries was an organically grown hodgepodge of individual and collective ownership. Aristocrats, Guilds and Commons and Church. Rights and property were also obligations. It was a lattice, with partial (not total) ordering and God/Crown as highest fixpoint. It’s not possible to transplant aristocrats out of the lattice without unraveling it, much less to graft them on modern capitalist concept of property.

    But this is what Moldbug tries to do. He ends with corporate organizational chart with feudal titles. It’s neither reactionary nor right 😉

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 4th, 2015 at 2:02 pm Reply | Quote
  • Hurlock Says:

    @Admin

    I just checked your twitter and you seem to be having some rant against the non-techcomm parts of NRx, and now I see this quote posted here, has something specific of significance happened that triggered this? Or just regular silly twitter drama?

    [Reply]

    aerdeap Reply:

    Just the typical twitter drama.

    [Reply]

    Alrenous Reply:

    Today I apparently feel like having an opportunity to sling pointless insults at anticapitalists.

    [Reply]

    Hurlock Reply:

    Welcome to my world, that’s how I feel almost every day.

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    Since the #HRx Volks lack either the capacity or motivation to sort out their own branding, and are — in consequence — clogging up #NRx with their angry foolishness, I thought it was time to start helping them out.

    [Reply]

    Hurlock Reply:

    I can’t help but feel some serious deja vu here, this feels exactly like the same time last year.
    We are trying to help them sort out their branding for more than a year now, I finally gave up and quit twitter, because at some point too much exposure to stupid can have very adverse effects on your psyche if you do not have the required mental fortitude.
    And I am not optimistic about this getting sorted out ever. If we were unable to sort it out a year ago when the number of these people was lower around these parts, we are definitely not sorting it out now when their number is much higher. I think it actually would be better if people who actually run quality blogs to stop going on twitter at all so that they influx of “angry foolishness” gets dialed back at least a bit.

    But maybe it is finally time to come to terms with the fact that neoreaction is to remain in its Eternal September until gradual entropy erodes it completely into something like Counter Currents 2.0.
    All of the insightful people are already ignoring the tragedy of the commons that neoreaction has become and have either fully exited the scene or moved their discussions to private channels.

    [Reply]

    Kwisatz Haderach Reply:

    Hurlock, if you go, please take me with you (seriously).

    nrx.kwisatz.haderach@gmail.com

    Posted on April 4th, 2015 at 2:49 pm Reply | Quote
  • an inanimate aluminum tube Says:

    “The means of production belong either to individuals, to groups of individuals, or to the state which simply conducts state capitalism. ”

    That’s a little bit oversimplified. The following concept seems relevant.

    “In English common law, fee tail or entail is a form of trust established by deed or settlement which restricts the sale or inheritance of an estate in real property and prevents the property from being sold, devised by will, or otherwise alienated by the tenant-in-possession, and instead causes it to pass automatically by operation of law to an heir pre-determined by the settlement deed.”

    Mortgaging of entailed lands:
    “Lending upon security of a mortgage on land in fee tail was risky, since at the death of the tenant-in-possession, his personal estate ceased to have any right to the estate or to the income it generated. The absolute right to the income generated by the estate passed by operation of law to parties who had no legal obligation to the lender, who therefore could not enforce payment of interest on the new tenants-in-possession. The largest estate a possessor in fee tail could convey to someone else was an estate for the term of the grantor’s own life. If all went as planned, ***it was therefore impossible for the succession of patriarchs to lose the land, which was the idea.”***

    So, a family can own property, but it’s not just a “group of individuals”, because many of the people with an ownership interest are not even born yet.

    And some forms of property are not for sale at any price, nor can they be simply handed over to one’s creditors to pay one’s personal gambling debts.

    It seems that some people have forgotten this. Or rather… we’ve allowed them to forget it.

    [Reply]

    Hurlock Reply:

    How does any of this contradict the quote?

    [Reply]

    an inanimate aluminum tube Reply:

    “How does any of this contradict the quote?”

    “The means of production belong either to individuals, to groups of individuals, or to the state which simply conducts state capitalism”

    In this case the estate belongs to an individual… sorta. And it belongs to a chain of only partially defined, not yet existing individuals extending indefinitely into the future…sorta.

    But none of them have the right to sell / deed / gamble it away.

    And of course the Crown has certain interests in it as well.

    This is a far simpler and more direct ownership than that which was involved in feudal holdings. But maybe a good way to get people thinking about what we mean by ownership.

    This gets to the questions raised above about how aristocrats owned things as compared to how we own things.

    [Reply]

    Michael Reply:

    who cares how many angels can dance on the head of a pin they are not real. might makes right might gets to decide what sort of property rights there are for whatever means he favors. but heres the rub , only for so long as he can enforce it. whats important is what we know about the various benefits of the different systems and what we know about maintaining might.really the latter is all we really need to know. but of course its unknowable because gnon happens.so we think capitalism anticipates this but we know it doesnt really so we try to augment this glas bead game but of course the cathedral has already done that and not invited us to the game. so we must fucking kill them and do what they do but we get to decide hey im in.

    Posted on April 5th, 2015 at 1:51 am Reply | Quote
  • E. Antony Gray (@RiverC) Says:

    I don’t disrespect an antipathy towards traders. But this is like hating farmers for smelling like manure.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 5th, 2015 at 2:00 am Reply | Quote
  • existoon Says:

    So, aristocracy (and its propriety) is well dead, and all that remains is question of funding and branding ? How very practical and American.

    In the Gilded Age property was defended with machine guns and the robber barons were rebranding themselves as aristocrats by plundering the ancient software and hardware (it went as far as importing castles from Europe stone by stone). The People opposed that, democratically. Contemporary social context and propriety which evolved from all that is neither democratic nor aristocratic, neither left or right, but twisted, horrible and idiosyncratic.

    But rinse that and repeat and get more farcical. Landless (does your blog belong to you? I don’t think so) Aristoi defend their branding with words (where are the AK-47s, cryptolocked or not ? Oh, they are virtual, defending the games against the SJW People/Products * ?)

    Looks like we’re all reactionaries now, with one thought in our zombie heads: what has the world come to ? 😉

    * SJW products are the mirror image of Aristoi products in many ways, but branding is different. It really is.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 5th, 2015 at 9:26 am Reply | Quote
  • Artxell Knaphni Says:

    @
    @existoon

    [existoon]: “Outside the Shell, there is no OS. There isn’t even a MMU”

    {AK}: There’s always an ‘OS’, lots of them, recognising that is the key.

    [existoon]: “but (technomic) NRx seems to think they’ve found one plundering”

    {AK}: The psychic imaginary of the traditional ‘monotheistic’, Occidental ‘OS’, was built through ‘plunder’ of other ‘OSs’: Neoreaction, generally, is caught up in the logic of that duality: in hallucinations of dark reversal.

    [existoon]: “IMO, all they’ve found is mold, bugs and propriety. Alien is awake, they want to tie it up with duct tape and I’m just saying they have my sympathy”

    {AK}: Each identity group thinks the ‘others’ are aliens. So the game is always inflated misrepresentation of those ‘others’, forcing them out of the attention-seeking game through ridiculous characterisations; the ‘Medusan caricatures’ I referred to, the ‘alien’ which you say Neoreaction wants to bind.
    The irony is that the desire for ridiculous ‘extremity’ is inculcated, always finding enough attention-seekers to perpetuate the sensationalist game of simplistic alienations & surface antagonisms. After all, it’s a business.

    [Reply]

    existoon Reply:

    Yea.

    There are indeed lots of OS for humankind (OS broadly defined as semi-coherent bundle of ways to interface to devices and other people, that is to say Reality), but all are spectral matryoshka dolls. Every OS has a kernel doll: Self which owns itself and pieces of Reality (as interfaced through the OS).

    The problem being, the kernel doll is like a Schrodinger cat, its existence is uncertain, so the existence of whole OS and Reality (and its properties) is also uncertain. Actually, this is backward, the purpose of the OS is to provide a box so that both Self and Society can pretend they exist.

    Aristolibertarian NRx OS is built on spectral sovereignty of Self and its Properties, worth of Self and Properties in marketplace and ‘objective’ measurements of Worth (chant Gnon, HBD, IQ, Gnon 1000 times). It’s build on ignorance (keeping eyes wide shut in determined and intelligent way). Backdooring these moldy foundations is left as an exercise for the reader.

    Hint: the Alien is inside.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 5th, 2015 at 10:33 am Reply | Quote
  • Shenpen Says:

    I seriously don’t understand this. Of course the means of production must belong to not-the-state, but it can have many configurations, few large corporations, or many small family businesses, or even co-operatives. That is many possible third, fourth etc. ways, many different social structures.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 10th, 2015 at 11:49 am Reply | Quote
  • Shenpen Says:

    “Society” owns something if it is owned by local individuals. If it is owned by abstentees from half a planet away, then not.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 10th, 2015 at 11:50 am Reply | Quote

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