Quote note (#237)

A little chunk of Moldbug, for no reason other than stumbling upon it (and because there’s a lot going on in just a few sentences):

The difference between a monarch and a dictator is that the monarchical succession is defined by law and the dictatorial succession is defined by power. The effect in the latter is that the fish rots from the head down — lawlessness permeates the state, as in a mafia family, because contending leaders must build informal coalitions. Since another name for a monarchist is a legitimist, we can contrast the legitimist and demotist theories of government. […] Perhaps unsurprisingly, I see legitimism as a sort of proto-formalism. The royal family is a perpetual corporation, the kingdom is the property of this corporation, and the whole thing is a sort of real-estate venture on a grand scale. Why does the family own the corporation and the corporation own the kingdom? Because it does. Property is historically arbitrary.

The best way for the monarchies of Old Europe to modernize, in my book, would have been to transition the corporation from family ownership to shareholder ownership, eliminating the hereditary principle which caused so many problems for so many monarchies. However, the trouble with corporate monarchism is that it presents no obvious political formula. “Because it does” cuts no ice with a mob of pitchfork-wielding peasants. […] So the legitimist system went down another path, which led eventually to its destruction: the path of divine-right monarchy. When everyone believes in God, “because God says so” is a much more impressive formula.

Perhaps the best way to look at demotism is to see it as the Protestant version of rule by divine right — based on the theory of vox populi, vox dei. If you add divine-right monarchy to a religious system that is shifting from the worship of God to the worship of Man, demotism is pretty much what you’d expect to precipitate in the beaker.

April 12, 2016admin 31 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Neoreaction

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31 Responses to this entry

  • Future Murder Says:

    If dictatorships rot from the head down, monarchies rot from the groin out. Succession is always the central political question and neither of these is an actual solution.

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    Hence Neocameralism. Which Moldbug alludes to in this passage with the suggestion that legitimism was ill-served by its attachment to a dynastic (rather than stock-based) model. It’s hard for me not to think that in propagating the language of ‘monarchy’ the ideological poisoned chalice that sickened the Ancien Régime has been passed on into the NRx main current. This is something of an unforced error, since the Neocameral definition of the ‘monarch’ has very little connection with the traditional sense of the term. Post-dynasticism aside, the Neocam CEO is not even sovereign, but only an executive agent of sovereign stock-holders. Still, the delights (and memetic efficacy) of rhetorical provocation are not to be under-estimated.

    [Reply]

    John Reply:

    The first google result for Neocameralism is unfortunate.

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    michael Reply:

    yeah i was going to say which “The royal family is a perpetual corporation” was that again?

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    michael Reply:

    at least MM acknowledges the pitchfork problem you dont own what you cant defend forever, the king was in fact a ceo hired by the shareholders of violence at serves st their pleasure.
    demotism shmotism we like “demotism” when its consumers signalling markets of the best mouse trap but all of a sudden they are stupid idiots when voting on their own governance? Could it be its not the proles or democracy but something else. hmmm lets see if i give you a choice between two stupid ideas which one would you pick stupid?
    or heres another idea lets hold for those who are voting on their own property s management and those who are voting on others property Say White men over 25 who own property vs niggers bitches hos teens and vagrants, is it democracy or communism thats the problem? lets try it with markets now do people buying things with hard earned money signal the market more accurately than niggers with obamaphone vouchers? HMMM
    The owners [shareholders] of a nation ARE the the white male productive they actually built the nation and further have the power, the potential to inflict the violence, to change kings to exercise ownership, as MM [and Jefferson] points out this is not something done lightly but eventually it gets done. What would help is making it easier to do. reboot usg to 1776 or 1766 rules works either way give every white males property owner an app to kill any nigger loving,white knighting, commie fag [king or politician] with a swipe of his thumb see how far progressives get this time.

    [Reply]

    michael Reply:

    look no questioning hierarchy as an organizing optimizer thats organic, alphas rule and everyones has a place in the pecking order. but the order is contested continually and consented to.side deals are made and broken, Elon Musk built that and he didnt if he doesnt get his due though tension builds, if you treat people like fauna sooner or later they realize they could just eat you. You could try triangulating some of them against others but you always end up with the rule no free lunch you want roads and armies and markets and a population to pull high IQs from you have to pay them what they are actually worth not whjat you can get away with or tension imbalance builds and will have to be paid with intertest, you want to be first mover and nuke them all fine now you got no point in being in business, unless you only kill the ones who are rreally of no use to you even that increases the cost of those left they see the future and want a deal while they can. no free lunch. no perpetual robot machines.

    vxxc2014 Reply:

    Go Mike!

    Grotesque Body Reply:

    “give every white males property owner an app to kill any nigger loving,white knighting, commie fag [king or politician] with a swipe of his thumb see how far progressives get this time.”

    Until white males with names like Berg and Stein start asking why shouldn’t everybody have this app, since it’s so great.

    Aristocles Invictus Reply:

    @Grotesque Body

    >Jews
    >White

    pick one

    Grotesque Body Reply:

    I need to make irony in my posts more obvious in future.

    Posted on April 12th, 2016 at 3:05 pm Reply | Quote
  • Quote note (#237) | Neoreactive Says:

    […] Quote note (#237) […]

    Posted on April 12th, 2016 at 3:11 pm Reply | Quote
  • Brett Stevens Says:

    The royal family is a perpetual corporation, the kingdom is the property of this corporation, and the whole thing is a sort of real-estate venture on a grand scale.

    From a Traditionalist perspective: the civilization is an organic whole, with the people as manifestations (instances) of this idea (essence), and the royals are those who serve the role of leadership as appointed to them.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 12th, 2016 at 3:55 pm Reply | Quote
  • Uriel A F Fiori Farizeli Fiori Says:

    what could have replaced divine-right as a way to produce legimity for the would-be CEO-king?

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    Probably nothing, which is the (tragic) point.

    [Reply]

    michael Reply:

    ironically its probably proto capitalism that fucked it up, commoditized and contracted violence begets capitalism which proxys money for violence capital allowing concentrated violence [wealth] more easily able to orchestrate and out outmaneuver more dispersed violence,its not so easy to change the tribal leader anymore you need a group more powerful than his accumulated wealth and to assemble it quicker than he can make deals. kings start rent seeking. still even royal lines are closer to the tine of a pitch fork than a politician. business wants stability but capitalists dont give a shit about capitalism only capital so they will exploit the less organized and distracted until reaction then pay with interest. smart capitalist would want real stability and pay their bills.

    [Reply]

    Grotesque Body Reply:

    ‘“Because it does” cuts no ice with a mob of pitchfork-wielding peasants.’ Granted.

    ‘“Because God says so” is a much more impressive formula.’ Granted.

    admin, being an atheist (presumably) finds this iteration of legitimism wanting, despite its being massively preferable to demotism. Thus the conclusion, “Probably nothing”.

    Both MM and admin are unduly pessimistic on this point.

    A better way to phrase the divine right legitimation (mostly by de-personifying it) is this: “Because it works.” Why should Jobs/Musk/Bezos sit on the iron throne? Because this model of governance works, and democracy doesn’t. What can you replace a Nicholas II with that won’t result in a Lenin? A corporate sovereign, because (counterfactually I’m taking this as self evident) the latter would have at least stood a chance of working. “Because is works” or something very much like it is what you get when you translate divine right from the language of God to the language of Gnon.

    [Reply]

    Uriel Alexis Reply:

    this would lead to the question “why does it work”, unless you could put in place a cult of efficiency as strong as Christianity in medieval Europe. it’s not impossible – Adam Smiths treatment of spontaneous order could have been translated into a cult of nature/reality (“vox natura, vox dei”), which could in turn resist very fairly the temptation to democratization (if only he wasn’t a Protestant) – but i suppose anything like the language of Gnon would sound ironically *heretic* and *pagan* to an Abrahamic mind (the Deists and Transcendentalists can tell you).

    [Reply]

    admin Reply:

    If we were dealing with a more admirable species of animal, that would certainly be an attractive way forward.

    Grotesque Body Reply:

    It’s always possible to ask, “Why does it work?” and if an answer is given, to further ask why the premises of the answer should be so. That’s the rhetorical tactic that children use when they ask, “Why? Why? Why? Why? Why? Why?” to a parent explaining domestic and social rules of conduct. Children are perfect nihilists in this way (relates to the ACIDS concept posted quite a while ago on this blog, if anyone else remembers it). If this nihilistic pattern of questioning gains traction, one’s society has already slipped into decadence and demotism. This is the destructive pattern of inquiry pursued by Socrates.

    At some point it has to be recognised that a particular configuration works just because it does. Engineering can’t begin until one accepts that the structure of the physical world just *is* the way it is, and natural phenomena just *do* work the way they do. Likewise for governance.

    Posted on April 12th, 2016 at 4:17 pm Reply | Quote
  • Mariani Says:

    Just something to be pedantic about: divine right of kings only came about following the Protestant reformation, so it is the “Protestant version.”

    [Reply]

    michael Reply:

    give unto Cesar what is cesars

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    michael Reply:

    and i can think of a couple of thomas that had to deal with a couple of henrys who figured they could demonstrate their divine right on their asses

    [Reply]

    D. Reply:

    The doctrine of the Divine Right of Kings was elaborated more by Catholics than by Protestants, both seeking to justify post-feudal monarchical absolutism. Demotism is perhaps the Enlightenment or post-Enlightenment version of divine right.

    I think demotism is presaged by the Levellers and other Protestant sects that insisted on absolute equality above all, but these sects were all forcefully suppressed at the time.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 12th, 2016 at 6:39 pm Reply | Quote
  • Son_of_Olorus Says:

    Vox populi vox dei est,
    Vox mea vox populi est,
    Ergo est vox mea vox dei.

    The voice of the people is the voice of God ,
    My voice is the voice of the people ,
    Therefore, it is my voice is the voice of God .

    A Politicians life.

    source: http://curmudgeonjoy.blogspot.co.uk/2008/11/memento.html

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 12th, 2016 at 9:43 pm Reply | Quote
  • SanguineEmpiricist Says:

    gosh whenever i read his prose i wonder how someone can make something so informationally dense but so easy to read. i want to use drugs to increase my verbal just to write like him.

    [Reply]

    Grotesque Body Reply:

    I think MM’s proficiency as a writer comes from his discrimination as a reader.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 13th, 2016 at 12:59 am Reply | Quote
  • vimothy Says:

    Where does the law come from in a neo-reactionary state?

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 13th, 2016 at 10:43 am Reply | Quote
  • michael Says:

    @Future Murder
    at which point the JQ would instantly be solved with no malice, just business

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 13th, 2016 at 3:05 pm Reply | Quote
  • Hank Says:

    The market and demotism/voting analogy doesn’t really work. Most people in the market have no market power and are price takers. To move the market you need to have enough resources or make a better mouse trap. Whereas the whole idea of demotism/voting is that every vote is supposed to count and be sacred or something.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 13th, 2016 at 5:11 pm Reply | Quote
  • Xoth Says:

    Some dismiss the neocameral view with what one might call the “mess of pottage” argument, that naive owners will severely undervalue their stock holdings and exchange them for trivialities like liquor or small sums of money. I think this will with a bit of tradition not be a problem.

    However, the joint stock corporation has some further problems as modern times have shown us. Aggregators, like banks and mutual funds, will eventually run the show. Said show will furthermore be run for the benefit of the intermediaries, not the actual owners of either the country or the aggregators. Should this be considered a failure mode? Possibly. It doesn’t feel right.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 14th, 2016 at 4:19 pm Reply | Quote
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    […] Land catches an interesting Twitter Cut. A referendum on reality would seem to be in order. Also a Quote Note from the very best. And another brilliant set of Twitter Cuts from […]

    Posted on April 20th, 2016 at 8:16 am Reply | Quote

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