Posts Tagged ‘Cathedral’

Quote note (#238)

A Fernandez classic (concluding):

In seeking to become the masters, the Western political elite has become the slave of ideas they can’t even name, yet which oppress them like a dream weight, holding them down, making everything impossible. In an ending filled with irony, a Western Left that declared that nothing was out of bounds, which boasted it would achieve its goals by any means necessary, finds itself in a strait-jacket of its own device, unable to lift its own feet, quivering in fear before third-rate desert bandidos and a Russian thug.

Today, the Western heritage is being stripped by a dying left to pay for a lost wager for the soul of history. Yet, however hard it plunders the Western left is going down and the only question is how much else goes down with it. If the current crisis corresponds to the tremors that heralded the demise of the Soviet Union, it may only be a few preference cascades from interesting times.

April 14, 2016admin 7 Comments »
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Quote note (#235)

The implausible telos of progressive race politics:

It is certainly possible to get to a place where jobs at Facebook are allocated by global demographics, with the requisite number of Aboriginals and so forth. South Africa, with BEE, is rapidly approaching this point. If you want to make all the present programmers at Facebook racists, it’s an excellent way to proceed, but I really don’t think it will lead to your uniform, perfect and beige dream world. (Not sure if you’re familiar with present conditions in the Rainbow Nation.)

The idea that the progressive race religion is something that can be productively reasoned about ended for many of us at precisely the moment NRx began. Still, trying — or pretending to try — to argue optimistically about it could (perhaps) remain worthwhile as an experiment, even without the slightest realistic chance that it could work.

Again, I’m not here to get you to agree with me; I know that’s impossible. What I’m curious [about] is whether you can at least agree to disagree.

That doesn’t seem much more realistic (so it’s probably an experiment — or cultural tactic — of some different kind.)

ADDED: “Of course, it’s incredibly important to keep diversity issues at the forefront of everyone’s awareness …”

April 1, 2016admin 46 Comments »
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Twitter cuts (#57)

(This kind of abysmal insight is what NRx is for.)

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March 28, 2016admin 9 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Democracy
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Virtual Media

It’s rare for an image to become iconic so quickly:

VR-Zuck

There’s a Rorschach Blot element to it, with everyone seeing what they’re expecting to. The source adds some context. The folks buried in the matrix are journalists. (Everyone knows who the other guy is.)

The picture was everywhere on social media, almost immediately. Zuck isn’t really looking at anyone (he’s staring forward into his own — eminently practical — dreams). The journalists are looking at what he’s showing them, and only that. We’re looking at them, asymmetrically (through social media). In other words, we’re seeing a new media system interring an old one inside itself. The press is being buried alive, in front of our eyes, and we’re (typically) trying not to laugh alongside Zuck too conspicuously, because the idea of that makes us nervous — perhaps even slightly nauseous. Everyone knows something real is happening, precisely because of its near-parodic virtuality. When people look back at this, it’s the obvious bizarre novelty of it — to us — that will look comical.

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February 23, 2016admin 37 Comments »
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Sentences (#44)

Succinct insight from Lind:

Within the Beltway, the failure of national policies is not important.

The whole (short) article is highly recommended, and not only because it converges on the cybernetics of the NRx Cathedral concept almost perfectly:

… the only thing that really matters is remaining a member of the establishment. This completes the loop in what is a classic closed system, where the outside world does not matter and is not allowed to intrude. Col. John Boyd, America’s greatest military theorist, said that all closed systems collapse. The Washington establishment cannot adjust, it cannot adapt, it cannot learn. It cannot escape serial failure.

The very success of the establishment at perfecting machine politics — i.e. desensitization to performance-based feedback — guarantees concentrated idiocracy and collapse.

February 19, 2016admin 13 Comments »
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Sentences (#43)

Goad on America’s racial psychosis:

It’s a logically impossible world where somehow society is rooted in white supremacy, yet this same society’s cardinal sin is white supremacy.

February 17, 2016admin 28 Comments »
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Cathedralism

Imagine, hypothetically, that you wanted the regime to succeed. Would you recommend Cathedralization? Cynically considered, the track record is, at least, not bad. Planetary dominion is not to be sniffed at. (Suggestions in this direction are not unknown, even in XS comment threads.)

The Cathedral, defined with this question in mind, is the subsumption of politics into propaganda. It tends — as it develops — to convert all administrative problems into public relations challenges. A solution — actual or prospective — is a successful management of perceptions.

For the mature Cathedral, a crisis takes the consistent form: This looks bad. It is not merely stupid. As Spandrell recently observes, in comments on power, “… power isn’t born out of the barrel of a gun. Power is born out of the ability to have people with guns do what you tell them.” (XS note.) The question of legitimacy is, in a real sense, fundamental, when politics sets the boundaries of the cosmos under consideration. (So Cathedralism is also the hypertrophy of politics, to the point where a reality outside it loses all credibility.)

Is your civilization decaying? Then you need to persuade people that it is not. If there still seems to be a mismatch between problem and solution here, Cathedralism has not entirely consumed your brain. To speculate (confidently) further — you’re not a senior power-broker in a modern Western state. You’re even, from a certain perspective, a fossil.

Cathedralism works, in its own terms, as long as there are no definite limits to the efficacy of propaganda. To pose the issue at a comparatively shallow level, if the political response to a crisis simply is the crisis, and that response can be effectively controlled (through propaganda, broadly conceived), then the Cathedral commands an indisputable practical wisdom. It would be sensible to go long on the thing.

If however (imagine this, if you still can) manipulation of the response to crisis is actually a suppression of the feedback required to really tackle the crisis, then an altogether different story is unfolding.

Is reality subordinated to the Cathedral because — and exactly so far as — ‘the people’ are? That is the question.

ADDED: Deeply relevant.

February 16, 2016admin 37 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Realism
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Sub-Cathedral Media

Journalism doesn’t occupy the sovereign position within the classic (Moldbuggian) NRx analysis of the Cathedral. It is downstream of the academic clerisy, who establish doctrine, and then perform high-level indoctrination, with journalism schools as a relatively subservient node on the conveyor. Only the quantitative propaganda function of the media, as the terminal relay to the masses, produces the impression that it effectively rules. Media apparatchiks have negligible intellectual productivity. They serve the Zeitgeist, by trying to remember what their professors taught them.

Still, as the question goes:

If, when journalists and politicians conflict, the politicians always go down in flames and the journalists always walk away without a scratch, who exactly is wearing the pants in this place?

Disconcerting then, to read this story, in which the pants aren’t at all where they might be expected:

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February 11, 2016admin 32 Comments »
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Sentences (#40)

How to gauge the prevailing ideology. In stark contrast to ritualized witch-hunting of rightists (examples given) …

It’s hard to think of a situation where holding left-wing beliefs, no matter how left wing they are, would get someone removed from an an organization that is not itself expressly right-wing.

(Feel free to take that as a challenge. Reference here.)

February 6, 2016admin 24 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Ideology
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Twitter cuts (#45)

Throwing in another twitter-cut back-to-back, because this is perfect:


(That’s a description, not a proposal.)

January 20, 2016admin 7 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Media
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