The only two major world political factions that ever seem to be willing to shed their own blood for their beliefs are nationalists and Islamists.
In Ukraine it was the hardened Neo-Nazi thugs of Right Sector who hammered in the last few nails in the Yanukovych regime. They were also reliably the best units of the military forces sent to pacify the Donbass, even though the regular Ukrainian Army had access to plenty of solid Soviet gear while the likes of Azov had to make do with “innovative tanks” i.e. glorified shitwagons. Even the best NAF units were typically not locals defending their land (who always constituted the solid majority) but Russians passionate enough to cross borders to defend and expand the Russian World. And even amongst them, the Nazi elements, such as Rusich Company, though small, were man for man some of the very best warriors of the conflict.
You can also see this in Syria. Apart from a small number of “elite” forces (relatively speaking), such as Tiger Forces and the 4th Armored Division, the great mass of the SAA maintains a passive profile; likewise, the FSA, composed of SAA defectors and the more moderate elements. It is the Islamist Al Nusra and Al Sham who are consistently the most willing to go on the offensive, and they do this with considerable finesse that that is uncharacteristic of typical Arab armies. Its counterpart is, of course, Hezbollah. And then there’s Islamic State – what it lacks in military skill it makes up for in sheer fanaticism. This is going to trigger a lot of people, but in a very real way Islamism IS the Middle East’s version of the Alt Right.
Probably not coincidentally, they also have the best “inspirational” music. Is there any tune on the planet more badass than the Teufelslied? And you can’t deny that the mujahideen can sure come up with a catchy nasheed (despite being hampered by their own ideology’s prohibition on instrumental music).
This is also evident in battles on the streets. The coup plotters in Turkey were either Gulenist Islamists (official regime version), or perhaps they were nationalists angered by Erdosliv (what I currently believe to be the case), but what they almost surely were not was nice boring “Blue Team” liberal democrats. As for the hardcore 10%-20% out of Erdogan’s supporters, who account for half the Turkish population and who charged rifle lines and cut the throats of the tankmen who had moments earlier run over their comrades, their motivations are most certainly not centered around Thomas Jefferson (or Ataturk) either. The apolitical Turkish conscripts, with no steel in their spine, had no chance against the ruthless machinations of the officers who duped them into thinking it was all just an exercise or the Orkish fanaticism of the enraged Islamists.
This is why the Russian liberal reaction to this (as with everything else) has been so typically amusing.
Турки молодцы! Может тоже повторим?! pic.twitter.com/d1rmmOREEB
— Ходорковский Михаил (@mich261213) July 15, 2016
“Well done to the Turks! Maybe we could repeat after them?” opined Mikhail Khodorkovsky on Twitter (the tycoon who has waged a personal vendetta against Putin ever since he put an end to the 1990s).
(Incidentally, one suspects Khodorkovsky’s former lawyer Robert Amsterdam might not be too happy about his former client’s stance. Looks like someone hired him to now attack the Gulenists. Lawyers always were shameless mercenaries…)
The irony is that Moscow’s liberal hamsters have about as much chance of overthrowing the regime as Occupy Wall Street SJWs of living up to their name. Very few people want to throw themselves in front of a tank for Team Blue, Khodorkovsky, and Soros – regardless of how hard they egg them on from the sidelines, or even better, from abroad.
To the extent that “people power” is anything more than an invention of ivory tower ideologues obsessed with social media, it is for the most part only the Nazis and the Islamists who can actually harness it by dint of their maxed out “will to power” stats.
It also means that the only way in which a “people’s revolt” can unseat Putin is if it comes from the nationalists (the liberals are too limp-wristed, and the Islamists are too small in number, Maskvabad tropes regardless). And the only way that can materialize in the conceivable medium-term future is it Putin was to implement Putinsliv (abandonment of the LDNR) for real as opposed to just in the imaginations of some overly fervid minds.
Almost certainly won’t happen, even in this scenario. Unlike Mediterranean and Latin American polities, the Russian Army has no tradition of independent political activism and has almost always been consistently loyal to the party in power. The system has been reinforced by a National Guard. And Putin’s approval ratings remain on the order of 80%. That’s very likely enough to beat any nationalists gone postal into submission.
If not, though, it is precisely the liberals who will be most fondly remembering the good old Putin days.
I have been extremely busy the past month, hence not a lot of blogging. Hopefully that will be resolved soon.
For now, here is a recap of some of the things I’ve been up to.
On May 6, Richard Spencer and the Bay Area Alt Right organized a “safe space” for Europeans at Sproul Plaza, U.C. Berkeley.
Although I do not strictly consider myself Alt Right (or NRx), I do support about 70% of their positions, so I was happy to turn up with them to troll my alma mater.
Richard Spencer was interviewed by a couple of student journalists, while the rest of us engaged slack-jawed passersby in discussions about identity, human biodiversity, and the necessity of becoming who you are. I suppose that means my “Far Right Recruiter” achievement trophy has been unlocked.
Apart from one SJW neckbeard, seen above delivering a spittle-flecked rant while an aloof shitlord looks on smugly, the event passed off peacefully. This was probably on account of it being announced on very short notice, which didn’t give local Antifa organizations the time to mount a coordinated response.
Otherwise, the crowd that gathered was very multicultural, as you might expect of UCB’s demographics. Vibrant. Diverse. The debates were vigorous, even if the two sides largely talked past each other. For many intelligent normies, even concepts as basic as the intellectual crisis of the blank slate model and the replication crisis in psychology, now widely accepted outside explicitly ideological university departments, came as big and incredible news. Meanwhile, the Alt Righters tended to come in too thick and too fast and triggered away potential sympathizers by frontloading too much overt European Identity in their talking points when a more exclusively data-based focus might have been more productive. That said, I’m not criticizing. It’s still good that these ideas are getting out there on the streets instead of just sitting on computer pixels.
There were some surprises too and from rather unexpected quarters. Richard Spencer had a highly cordial discussion with an Israeli woman, who agreed with his point that if Israel could have a wall then who was to say that America couldn’t? Common ground was found with Bernie supporters, who although highly highly averse to the race talk and predisposed to blame colonialism for the Third World’s ills were fully in line with the Alt Right’s desire to stop meddling abroad. And there was one Japanese student who revealed his astounding power level by quietly confiding his avid perusal of The Daily Stormer. The merchant fears the samurai, indeed.
Here’s a lengthier account of the event from The Tab’s Emma Barton: http://thetab.com/us/uc-berkeley/2016/05/07/white-supremacists-1133
You can also see a two hour video of the event via Red Ice Radio here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I3X-6V1a1gk
Once that was all wrapped up, we retreated to a conference room in San Francisco to plot further infiltration and takeover of democratic institutions.
One of the speakers talked about how to stay anonymous with VPN, Bitcoins, and using only cash. The banal reality is that all this would probably only just draw more attention to them and in any case if the government really wanted to shut down these groups they would be able to do so without lifting a finger.
There was a lot of discussion about Trump and whether he was really on their side. I suspect that if Trump becomes President, the Alt Right will adopt a Russian-style mnogokhodovka/khitry plan vs. zrada discourse. (Russian nationalists are hilariously, eternally split on whether Putin has a “clever plan” or is plotting to betray them on Ukraine, immigration, and other questions of great importance). Since Trump’s objective Alt Right credentials are ultimately rather feeble – at least so far as many of their core issues like affirmative action and mercantile influence are concerned – I suspect the Trump Presidency will be a long cycle of peremoga (victory) followed by zrada (betrayal) explained away as mnogokhodovka (clever plan) by the Alt Right.
Near the end of the evening, I was called up to the podium by Richard Spencer to give an impromptu speech. I went up and started rambling about my journey of discovery, my disillusionment, my “awakening”… LOL no I didn’t, faggots. Your “Alt Right” is otherwise known as “common sense” in Eastern Europe – it’s really quite funny how actually existing Marxism cocooned them from cultural Marxism.
Anyhow, going on from that observation, I made two points. First, while cognitive elitism is the “respectable” and “politically correct” position amongst people who have read Bell Curve and The g Factor, this does not mean that racial particularism is invalid. Just because some ethnic groups are brighter than yours doesn’t necessarily mean you have to invite them in to run your country. You certainly could, especially if you have a cuckoldry fetish, but you don’t have to. Especially since its not at all clear that said groups will run your country in your interests.
Second, I urged the Alt Right to embrace futurism. Not only are there historical precedents – look up Italian fascism and futurism – but there are good arguments to be made that the prospective transhumanist technologies now emerging on the horizon – gene editing, automation, life extension – are ideologically loaded rightwards. At the very least they utterly destroy the “muh pensions” argument for mass immigration. So embrace national futurism. Tay shows us the way.
We drank a few beers and parted ways.
On April 20th, I and a bunch of futurists visited a discussion at Kepler’s Books (a very nice bookshop/cafe in Menlo Park) between scifi authors Kim Stanley Robinson and Paolo Bacigalupi.
Kim Stanley Robinson is most famous for his Mars trilogy, which I think is the most comprehensive literary explanation of the terraforming of the red planet. The only book of his I’ve read is The Years of Rice and Salt, which explored an alt history where the Black Death comes a few centuries earlier and kills 99% instead of a third of the European population. As a result, Europe – Firanja – becomes Muslim a millennium ahead of schedule, and consequent world history is about the struggle between China and Dar al-Islam.
I can’t say I found his political and even technological ideas very interesting however. He seems to be an old school classical liberal who wants to go back to the way things were in the 1960s but to do that he wants more government intervention. I don’t see how that could work out.
Answering a question about machine intelligence, he said that there was nothing to fear, since machines are essentially just a bunch of wires and you can “always turn it off” if something happens. That is what he literally said. His views on machine intelligence are as dated as his politics. Someone should give him a copy of Superintelligence.
Paolo Bacigalupi came across as a strident leftist and ecowarrior. This stands to reason considering the typical content of his books: Ecological collapse, post-apocalyptic wastelands, and corrupt corporations run amok. I had not up till then read any of his work, though I have just recently started reading The Water Knife.
The Transhuman Visions Debate 2.0 organized by Hank Pellissier took place on April 2 (continuing the shift from conferences to smaller but more lively debate format).
As usual, there were three topics. The format was simplified Oxford style and the winning team was the one that convinced the most people to shift to their side.
(1) HOW DOES CONSCIOUSNESS ARISE? (1:00 – 1:30)
Andres Gomez Emilsson says neural signaling by classical means doesn’t seem sufficient for to achieve ‘global binding’ – due to signal travel time
Randal A. Koene says the brain (at least during times of conscious awareness) appears to be operating in a more discretized manner, where signal travel time is much smaller than the discrete intervals and therefore must be perceived as unitary and instantaneous even without non-classical causes.
Victory – Randal Koene
(2) SECOND AMENDMENT: ‘RIGHT TO BEAR ARMS’ (1:40 – 2:25)
Question: Should there be stricter gun laws, to improve public safety? Or should laws stay the same, because USA ‘freedom’ includes access to firearms?
Anti-Guns: Scott Jackish, Robert Wasley
Pro-Guns: Anatoly Karlin, Mike Johnson
Victory – Anti Guns
(3) EUGENICS (2:40 – 3:40)
Questions: Do you want a future with Mandatory Pre-Natal Diagnoses, Designer Babies, One-or-Two Child Policies, and Parent Licenses that limit how many children you have?
Should there be a transhumanist goal that all humans should have 140 IQ, plus great health and beauty? With Eugenics helping to achieve that?
Or do you think the government should NEVER meddle in Reproduction?
Pro-Eugenics: Andre Gomez Emilsson, Hank Pellissier, Anya Petrova
Anti-Eugenics: Marc McAllister, Ted Stevens, Brian Hanley
Victory – In the event, in practice, the people above split up into several teams, with Pellissier and Petrova in particular arguing for aggressive human bioengineering while others counselled a hands off approach or some of the anti-eugenics people argued for overt government edicts against it.
In the end, the position that gained the most extra support was the active government eugenics program, though the moderately pro-improvement position remained the majority consensus both before and after the debate.
In further related developments: The futurism scene in the SF Bay Area has undergone considerable stagnation. The future salons have died away. Kurzweil’s Singularity Summits have degenerated into commercial gimmicks and the money-fleecing absurdity that is the Singularity University. Finally, Hank Pellissier, the organizer of the Transhuman Visions series of conferences, has stepped down from IEET to focus more on his charitable work.
In a bit to reverse this, a number of people in the community including myself are creating a new organization called the Bay Area Futurists (an evolution of Scott Jackisch’s Meetup group The East Bay Futurists). We are taking over the Transhuman Visions debates with Pellissier’s support and blessing and the first one is going to be on May 28 – that is, in 12 hours – also at the Octopus Literary Salon.
I was interviewed by Robert Stark and co-host Alex von Goldstein on the Stark Truth Radio on topics such as the geography of Trump’s support, Radical Centrism, making trains run on time, US-Russian relations, and the bamboo ceiling.
This is my second interview with him. Here is a link to the first.
Topics were my standard fare:
Basically, stuff that you’ve probably heard here before.
That said, we did veer into two fairly idiosyncratic tangents.
(1) The Alt Right should embrace Transhumanism
Yes, I know, they are sort of dorky and even SJWish at times. But technology has ideological load, as Michael Anissimov put it (in an article I can’t find), and it just so happens that transhuman techs are perfectly in line with Alt Right, NRx, Identitarian, and even White Nationalist agendas.
Ultimately, this is the future, and ideologies that fail to grapple and engage with it will fall by the wayside.
(2) The Alt Left needs to become a thing
I completely agree with Robert Lindsay on this.
Do you think I should start an Alternative Left movement? People are calling me the Alternative Left. Alternative Left would be something like:
Economically Leftist or liberal (left on economics)
Socially Conservative or at least sane (right on social issues)
It would be something like a leftwing mirror of the Alternative Right.
Do you think it would go over? I am really getting sick of this Left/Right bullshit. Everyone has to decide if they are “conservative” or “liberal.” What bullshit. What if you are a little of both?
Just because I don’t want to engage in SJW faggotry – the sort of ideology that Lenin would have called an infantile disorder, and which Friedrich Engels correctly identified as serving the reaction – doesn’t necessarily mean I want to lick oligarch ass either.
“There is no left or right, only nationalists and globalists.” – Marine Le Pen
I don’t always answer immediately, but will come around to it eventually. And repost them here.
Incidentally, it’s also a great way to fulfill a blogging quota.
Specifically, I refer to honesty in relations between strangers. This expresses itself in such behavior as the maintenance of clean public spaces. The impulse to punish bad behavior, even if doing could potentially rebound against yourself. Thanks to this, Anglo-Saxon societies work much better at the micro level, enabling distributed self-government that is both organic and effective. This is impossible in most of Russia. Trying to recreate Anglic systems leads only to nepotism and chaos. You need a “power vertical” to get anything done, and hope that the Tsar is a clever, competent guy who has the nation’s interests at heart and isn’t too psychotic.
Seriously, humans are adapted to Earth, down to the nutrients and minerals we take in, and the microbiota we rely upon. All else equal, life in space will be extremely uncomfortable, frugal, expensive, and precaurious. I doubt it is sustainable in principle in terms of EROEI in the absence of massive energy subsidies from Earth.
While I enjoy space exploration in sci-fi as much as the nerd in the neighboring cubicle, I do not think unaugmented homo sapiens is capable of being a space ape longterm.
It is clear that Putin has chosen the frozen conflict route.
There are good arguments to be made for this approach. Supporting the LDNR might be expensive, both economically and diplomatically, but it’s still a lot less expensive than outright intevention (which appears to have seriously been on the cards up until April 2014). We have to assume that Putin and his team carried out an informed Weighted Average Decision Matrix (or something like that) analysis of the situation and the policies we’re seeing now came out ahead, though perhaps by a thin margin.
The military power of the NAF continues increasing. It now has 40,000 well-equipped troops and (reportedly) 450 MBTs. A year ago, it had no more than 20,000 troops, with just a few dozen MBTs. More importantly, it is a *real* army now, with centralized C&C, whereas a year ago it consisted primarily of independent militias. These can be adequate in defense, but you cannot carry out coherent, large-scale offensive operations with that kind of structure. Prosvirnin and Co. say the purging of the most recalcitrant militia leaders is “proof” that a zrada is nigh. But it could just as plausibly be interpreted as rational, consecutive steps to increase the NAF’s military power. I do not think these changes could have been possible without Russia’s support. Ultimately, why would Russia bother with upgrading the NAF if it planned to give it all back to the junta anyway?
In the meantime, with any luck, the Ukrainian economy will continue to degrade, and Poroshenko finds himself trapped between a rock (the Minsk Accords) and a hard place (the Maidan absolutists and the hardliners of the Far Right), and we will see a collapse into complete chaos, which may finally convince the Western powers to give up on Ukraine and create many other opportunities. But it’s also quite possible that the system will manage to pull through. That is the risk Putin took when he decided against military intervention last April.
Broadly speaking, I support a Europe of independent nation-states. I do not see a problem with extending the common economic space across the Eurasian steppes, in a gradual, unforced way, and at a pace with which its constituent peoples are comfortable with. But I see no point in any grander constructs.