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Will "Late Mass Democracy" Become 1984 or A BRAVE NEW WORLD?
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John Derbyshire spoke at the Mencken Club recently (November 3, just before the midterms) and spoke on the subject of anarcho-tyranny.

See earlier Brimelow At Mencken: “Democrats—Party Of Perjury, Party Of Treason, Party Of Hysterical Screeching.”

Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. Thank you for being here, and thanks to Paul [Gottfried] for what already looks like another very successful conference.

First somewhat of an apology. The title of my talk is misleading. I have the heart and soul of a freelance journalist, and we don’t bother much with titles. Titles to articles in newspapers and magazines were traditionally supplied by subeditors—the people responsible for headlines and photo captions. Where titles are concerned, a freelancer has to take his chances with the subs.

That’s not precisely what happened here. What actually happened was, Paul asked me if I’d join a panel on anarcho-tyranny. I said I’d be delighted. Paul asked if there was any particular subtopic I wanted to focus on. I said: “Nah, just give me a topic and I’ll run with it.” Paul then listed my topic as: “The Breakdown of Order in Late Mass Democracy.”

I tell you this to make it plain that I don’t, from long habit, take titles very seriously; and this is not Paul’s fault.

So I can now tell you that, after pondering the title Paul has supplied me with, I don’t in fact think there will be a breakdown of order in what—yes, I do agree—we can rightly call “late mass democracy.”

Not only do I think there will not be a breakdown of order, I fear the opposite thing: an intensification of order. Let me explain that.

I think the distinguishing characteristic of late mass democracy is the elites getting their mojo back. After a Century of the Common Man, elites are now saying to themselves, in the current popular idiom: “We’ve got this.”

To explain what I mean, let me take a brief historico-literary detour.

When I was getting my secondary education back in England in the early 1960s, a common exercise for sixth formers—that is, high school juniors and seniors—was to read George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four, and then to read Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, and to write an essay declaring, with supporting arguments, which of the two books you thought the actual future would more closely resemble.

Both these books presented the reader with a dystopia—a dark view of humanity’s future. The two dystopias were radically different, though.

In Orwell’s vision, as I’m sure is well known, the human spirit had been tamed by terror. A ruling elite, divided into an Inner Party and an Outer Party, maintained itself by fear. Outer Party members, who did the administrative grunt work, were kept under constant vigilance by the Thought Police. Dissidents were hauled away to be tortured and killed. A great sullen mass of proles, with no political rights, were kept pacified by a coarse kind of popular culture and frequent spasms of war fever, and were also under watch by the Thought Police, so that potential troublemakers could be quickly identified and eliminated.

Huxley’s dystopia was altogether different. Huxley’s planet is unified and at peace. Its affairs are managed by ten regional Controllers. Marriage, childbirth, and family life have been abolished, along with all kinds of suffering — even such minor kinds as disappointment and frustration. Also gone are the nation-state, war, religion, ethnicity, and all profound art and literature. Disease has been banished. Old age has been banished too, very nearly: Citizens are healthy, vigorous, and attractive until about age 60, when they decline quickly to death. Everyone lives in a state of contented hedonism, assisted by regular doses of soma, a freely available narcotic with no side- or after-effects. Sex is promiscuous and recreational, with universal free access to contraception and abortion.

The necessary work of Huxley’s society is carried out via a system of castes, with bright and capable Alphas at the top, then betas, gammas, deltas, down to dimwitted Epsilons at the bottom. Caste is determined in the Hatcheries, where good-quality eggs and sperm are mated to produce Alphas. Inferior zygotes are assigned to the lower castes and cloned. The production of well-adjusted citizens is completed in Conditioning units.

All this is accomplished so successfully that society is well-nigh self-regulating. The Controllers, though in theory they’re possessed of despotic powers, in fact have very little to do.

When I got this assignment around age 17, I pondered the matter and came down on the side of Huxley as having given us a more probable picture of the future. I can’t honestly remember my arguments, but I suspect my choice was mainly esthetic. Orwell’s vision was plainly horrible. It even smelled bad: remember how Winston Smith’s apartment building stank of boiled cabbage? Huxley’s world, on the other hand, didn’t sound bad at all. Universal peace; no more diseases; pop a harmless pill if you’re unhappy; guilt-free recreational sex; what’s not to like? When you read Brave New World, you know there’s something badly wrong with it; but it’s surprisingly difficult to say what, exactly, that is. Speaking as a bookish intellectual, I would say that what’s wrong is the stasis, the end of any quest for knowledge, for deeper understanding of the world.

When I look at the trends of our own time, it seems to me that my 1962 judgment was correct, however accidentally. Of course, Huxley’s vision was only very approximately predictive. He got a lot of things wrong. We don’t need a caste of dimwitted Epsilons to do the industrial work, we can have robots do it.

More glaringly, he did not foresee the great explosion in the populations of hopeless people seeking to escape chaotic nations—the crowds we have seen on our TV screens this past few weeks heading up through Mexico; with, looming up behind them, the prospect of—what is the latest UN projection? Four billion, is it?—desperate Africans by the end of this century.

Still, if the civilized world can find some way to deal with those issues, or can just fence itself off from them, the trendlines for our society are Huxleyan. Soma, the universal tranquillizer, is not yet with us, but with a couple more cycles of pharmacological advance, it likely will be. An alpha class of genetically superior humans could arise quite naturally and commercially from techniques of embryo selection already available. Something like it is anyway emerging naturally, from assortative mating among our meritocratic elites. As has often been noted: doctors used to marry nurses and lawyers used to marry their secretaries. Now doctors marry doctors and lawyers marry lawyers. Huxley’s feelies—entertainment fed in through all the senses—are not far from the Virtual Reality gadgets already on the market.

As for social disorder: well, Pat Buchanan—who turned eighty yesterday, by the way: Happy Birthday, Pat!—reminded us in a column just last month how very disorderly the USA, and the rest of the civilized world, was fifty years ago. The Weathermen and the Black Panthers; the Symbionese Liberation Army—remember them? The Red Brigades and the Baader-Meinhof gang; political assassinations; the 1968 Democratic Convention; Kent State and Cornell; …

Antifa put up a good show; and yes, I certainly agree that they illustrate the principle of anarcho-tyranny very well, controlling the streets while leftist politicians stand down the police forces. As a force for generalized disorder, though, they are not impressive. Antifa would run like chickens from a whiff of grapeshot.

The overall trend of our societies is Huxleyan. It is the trend Steven Pinker has famously described in his book Better Angels: towards a pacified, tranquillized, hedonistic caste society.

Here in the USA the trend lines can actually be traced some way back.

In every organized society there is a tension between order and liberty. We Americans love our liberty, of course; but my love of liberty stops well short of loving your liberty to break my leg or pick my pocket. There needs to be social order.

Our own conception of social order is a fermented brew whose original ingredients were sketched out by David Hackett Fischer in his 1989 classic Albion’s Seed. Fischer described how the four main stocks of British settlers in the 17th and 18th centuries each contributed an ingredient to the national culture, and in particular to our notions of social order.

  • The Puritans of New England, drawn heavily from England’s literate artisan classes, had a conception of social order Fischer defines thus: “A condition where everything was put in its proper place and held there by force if necessary … a condition of organic unity.” Crime stats tell the story. Further quote from Fischer: “Crimes against property were more common than crimes against persons. But crimes against order were the most common of all.” [My italics.] The examples Fischer gives are: violations of the sabbath, blasphemy, sexual offenses, idleness, lying, domestic disorder, or drunkenness.
  • The “distressed cavaliers” and rustic, illiterate English peasants and house servants who populated Virginia and the Tidewater South had a much less egalitarian, much more hierarchical notion of social order, with county sheriffs appointed in the name of the Crown, not elected constables as in New England. There was much more interpersonal violence here; but the violence too was hierarchical. Fischer: “It was often used by superiors against inferiors, and sometimes by equals against one another, but rarely by people of subordinate status against those above them.” Crimes of violence were more common than property crimes.
  • The Quakers of the Delaware Valley based social order on tolerance, forbearance, and the Golden Rule. Quote from Fischer: “There were no crimes of conscience in the Quaker colonies before 1755.” Social order meant social peace. Criminal penalties were generally lighter than in the other colonies; but, says Fischer: “They punished very harshly acts of disorder in which one citizen intruded upon the peace of another … Penalties for crimes of sexual violence against women were exceptionally severe.”
  • And then there were the Scotch-Irish of the back-country, drawn from the half-civilized border lands where England meets Scotland, and from those same border folks’ Protestant settlements in Northern Ireland. These people had the least structured notion of social order among all the colonists. Fischer: “The prevailing principle was lex talionis, the rule of retaliation. It held that a good man must seek to do right in the world, but when wrong was done to him he must punish the wrongdoer himself by an act of retribution that restored order and justice in the world … A North Carolina proverb declared that ‘every man should be sheriff on his own hearth.’” That didn’t leave much for government to do. This was a very individualistic culture. Property crimes were punished much more severely than crimes of violence. One 18th-century court gave the following sentences: for hog stealing, death by hanging; for the rape of an 11-year-old girl, one shilling fine.

Overlaid on these original order traditions were the political arrangements thrashed out by the founders of our republic. Just to remind you, in very brief: Anti-Federalists favored localism and democracy modeled on the classical age, as updated by Locke and Montesquieu—a loose collection of self-governing cantons with minimal central control. Federalists argued for a stronger central government as better suited for defense and financial stability. Out of these arguments emerged our Constitution and Bill of Rights.

The Constitution was supposed to have settled this question: Could a republic of the classical democratic or aristocratic type, as somewhat modernized by recent thinkers, be scaled up to continental size, given that the only pre-modern unitary states of that size had been despotic empires?

ORDER IT NOW

You can make a case that the answer was “No” for the first hundred years or so of the U.S.A.; that the Civil War, whatever its proximate cause, showed the fundamental instability of the 1789 model; but that the model was then rescued, from the late 19th century on, by technology—particularly by mass communication, mass transportation, and mass education.

And thus we arrived at mass democracy: and not only us, but much of the rest of the world. And of course I am over-simplifying: the relevant developments have roots back in the 16th century, with printing and the Reformation—what the Third Duke of Norfolk dismissed with disgust as “this new learning.”

But we arrived at mass democracy, and the 20th century was the Century of the Common Man. We still had elites, of course; but under mass democracy—or, in the context of my title, early mass democracy—the elites had to pretend to be just lucky commoners. They had to practice the common touch.

The transformation is easier to see in cultures that came later to the party. Japanese elites used to wear fantastically elaborate uniforms. Palace flunkies used to stain their teeth black to distinguish themselves from the common herd. Now Japan’s elites strive to look just like middle-class salarymen. Or perhaps you’ve seen that juxtaposition of two photographs of female undergraduates at an Egyptian university, one taken in 1950 where they are in Western frocks and blouses, a westernized elite, the other much more recent with them all in burkas like peasant women.

Now, in the 21st century, the elites are making a comeback. They’ve had a bellyful of this Common Man stuff. How to do it, though? The traditional hierarchy of rank and genealogy—the pattern of order that shaped Europe and the old Tidewater South—is long gone. The violent egalitarianism of the Scotch-Irish has been corralled off into a few localities none of us ever need visit: inner-city ghettos and remote mountain villages. The totalitarian order of the big old 20th-century despotic utopias proved a bust, though it lingers on in a few hell-holes like North Korea.

What system of order is appropriate to an age of unbounded material plenty, ample leisure, an internet panopticon, and rapid growth of understanding in the human sciences and biotechnology? I think the goodthinking consensual model of Puritan Massachusetts set the model; except that, with sophisticated conditioning, a free ration of soma, and endless hedonistic distractions, there’ll be no need to burn witches or hang Quakers.

If we can just find some way to manage, or contain, those swelling tides of the hopeless heading for our borders, we shall reach the Brave New World at last.

(Republished from VDare by permission of author or representative)
 
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  1. Stick says:

    John, there’s always a need to burn witches and hang Quakers. Always.

    • Replies: @Anon
  2. If we can just find some way to manage, or contain, those swelling tides of the hopeless heading for our borders, we shall reach the Brave New World at last.

    The epidemiologists refer to it as Disease X.

    A system under stress reacts in a direction to relieve the stress. – Le Chatelier

    Mr. Derbyshire, if you have not read it I recommend Against The Grain by James Scott. Professor Scott, a self proclaimed anarchist, is overly romantic about “barbarians”, but he does make a good case about how civilization has, from the beginning, depended on the usefulness of those it rules. We are not far away from a time when the elites openly face that the masses are no longer useful to them.

    The present “value” of the unproductive mass of humanity is in maintaining the economic cycle by spending the “money” issued them by expanding credit. When the credit expansion ends the usefulness of the masses will end (see Le Chatelier, above). Barring that the masses can be convinced, once again, to play soldiers.

  3. Anonymous[249] • Disclaimer says:

    Orwell illustrated for us the mechanisms of control. But Huxley explained why the plebes would succumb to that control: they will trade all other freedoms for sexual freedom.

  4. “If we can just find some way to manage, or contain, those swelling tides of the hopeless heading for our borders…” Derbyshire you can start in helping to manage and contain the swelling tides by moving you and your family to China. Also, you can take back the illegal Chinese that China dumps in the USA.

  5. peterAUS says:
    @another fred

    When the credit expansion ends the usefulness of the masses will end (see Le Chatelier, above). Barring that the masses can be convinced, once again, to play soldiers.

    Makes sense.
    Still, the practical problem remains: what and how, exactly, is to be done?

    Re “usefulness of the masses will end”, well…then what?
    Re “play soldiers”, having nukes as part of arsenals, doesn’t feel practical.

    I feel the most likely solution, and future, would be some combination of Brasil, Orwell and Huxley. Say….different classes of people living in different territorial parts and managed using related methods.

    Some living in ultimate opulence, some quite well, and those not so well “managed” by some combination of the methods the authors were talking about.

    In any case dystopian for most of us.

  6. @Anon

    The radical philosophes in 18th Century France – the Baron d’Holbach’s close friends and dining companions, in other words – thought that the vulgarians could handle the “terrible truth” if you explained it to them in plain language, though because of censorship they had to do so through various subterfuges. The historian Peter Gay describes d’Holbach’s home in a fashionable part of Paris as a “propaganda factory for atheism.”

  7. Sean says:

    Still, if the civilized world can find some way to deal with those issues, or can just fence itself off from them, the trendlines for our society are Huxleyan. Soma, the universal tranquillizer, is not yet with us, but with a couple more cycles of pharmacological advance, it likely will be. An alpha class of genetically superior humans could arise quite naturally and commercially from techniques of embryo selection already available. Something like it is anyway emerging naturally, from assortative mating among our meritocratic elites. As has often been noted: doctors used to marry nurses and lawyers used to marry their secretaries. Now doctors marry doctors and lawyers marry lawyers

    Scotch-Irish of the back-country, drawn from the half-civilized border lands where England meets Scotland,

    http://ancestryireland.com/scotsinulster/Scottish%20Undertakers/Scottish_Undertakers.html

    Mainly from the closest part of Scotland (ie not the Borders)

  8. Sean says:

    An alpha class of genetically superior humans could arise quite naturally and commercially from techniques of embryo selection already available. Something like it is anyway emerging naturally, from assortative mating among our meritocratic elites. As has often been noted: doctors used to marry nurses and lawyers used to marry their secretaries. Now doctors marry doctors and lawyers marry lawyers

    The result is very intelligent and weird personalities,

    https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fnins.2016.00300/full
    Finally, Plomin and Deary (2015) point out that assortative mating is notably stronger (~0.40) for intelligence than for most other human traits, which maintains additive genetic variation for this trait as well as generating more “extreme” intelligence phenotypes than otherwise expected. Increased autism risk has been attributed by Baron-Cohen et al. (2006) to assortative mating between two individuals high in “systemizing,” and assortative mating is much high among individuals diagnosed with ASD than other disorders (Nordsletten et al.

  9. Anon[425] • Disclaimer says: • Website

    As for social disorder: Pat Buchanan… reminded us in a column just last month how very disorderly the USA, and the rest of the civilized world, was fifty years ago. The Weathermen and the Black Panthers; the Symbionese Liberation Army—remember them? The Red Brigades and the Baader-Meinhof gang; political assassinations; the 1968 Democratic Convention; Kent State and Cornell; … Antifa put up a good show… As a force for generalized disorder, though, they are not impressive. Antifa would run like chickens from a whiff of grapeshot.

    But 50 yrs ago, despite the preponderance of violent radical groups, mainstream society was sound and stable, i.e. most people grew up with both parents, church life was strong, and there were plenty of old people who still remembered WWI and WWII and Depression, people who grew up prior to Youth Culture that lionized impulsiveness, immaturity, and easy addiction to pop fashions.

    So, while radical groups were acting crazy, the Social Core of Mainstream Society was that of the Silent Majority. Solid stuff.

    But today, despite there being less terrorism and the like, the Social Core has eroded and rotted. There is anarchy in every household. It’s about wives hounding their hubbies for voting for Donald Trump or not being sufficiently opposed to him. It’s about crazy spouses suing to have their kids turn into Trankenstein monsters via ‘gender transition’ surgery. Also, slut behavior is common among educated middle class women. And there are tattoos all over the place. There is open porn even for kids. Even middle class people with professions have funny-colored hair or have tattoos all over.
    So, there is constant micro-anarchy everywhere and at all times. Anarcho-degeneracy has crept into every home. Even a supposedly ‘conservative’ show like new ROSANNE featured trankenstein kids. ‘Gay marriage’ became law of the land. And even though Women’s March didn’t lead to people get killed, the sight of all those women with ‘pussy hats’ makes one wonder what the hell happened to America. And then, there are these mega ‘gay pride’ marches and parades, as if there is no higher value than Anno Sodimini.

    And look at colleges. In the 60s, the radical students were acting crazy whereas most professors, left or right, were bourgeois in style and respectable. So, despite radical students and agitators, the core bastion of academia was still respectable.
    Today, entire departments are overrun by professors who are crazy and demented and push nutjob trivialities. Also, since they envy those with money or privilege in economic spheres(Wall Street, Hollywood, Silly Valley, Las Vegas, etc), they try to compensate with classroom control. They don’t so much teach their students as turn them into obedient barking minions. Classrooms have turned into initiation rites into pseudo-intellectual gangs.

    Furthermore, feminism and slut culture have destroyed birthrates in the West. Drugs and degeneracy are leading to early death and suicide. That means white population will decline and be replaced by Third Worlders. While the globo elites can shame and control white masses with ‘white guilt’, such will become impossible when the majority of people in the West becomes non-white. And then, the West will become like Latin America that is in a perpetual state of anarcho-tyranny whether it’s ruled by ‘rightists’ in Colombia or ‘leftists’ in Venezuela.
    It will be even worse in Europe as millions of black Africans pour in, beat up white males and carry out massive Afro-Colonization of White Wombs that will Africanize the European gene pool in ugabugery.

    • Replies: @peterAUS
    , @jack daniels
  10. ” We don’t need a caste of dimwitted Epsilons to do the industrial work, ”

    So why are they being imported throughout the West?

  11. peterAUS says:
    @Anon

    Good post.
    Agree, specially with:

    ..50 yrs ago, despite the preponderance of violent radical groups, mainstream society was sound and stable,

    So, while radical groups were acting crazy, the Social Core of Mainstream Society was that of the Silent Majority. Solid stuff.

    But today, despite there being less terrorism and the like, the Social Core has eroded and rotted.

    ..there is constant micro-anarchy everywhere and at all times. Anarcho-degeneracy has crept into every home.

    Classrooms have turned into initiation rites into pseudo-intellectual gangs.

    The West will become like Latin America that is in a perpetual state of anarcho-tyranny whether it’s ruled by ‘rightists’ in Colombia or ‘leftists’ in Venezuela.

    As for this:

    It will be even worse in Europe as millions of black Africans pour in, beat up white males and carry out massive Afro-Colonization of White Wombs that will Africanize the European gene pool in ugabugery.

    If you are talking Western Europe, probably.
    For some, say, historical reasons, pretty much doubt it, very much, for Eastern Europe. Especially certain parts of it.

  12. Rich says:

    Because of her eccentric personal life, I think most people forget the dystopia predicted in Ayn Rand’s novels. We have, seemingly, already passed the stage where government picks and chooses winners and losers in business, look at all the bailouts and buy-ins after the 08-09 financial crisis. We have affirmative action and nepotism destroying all our institutions and a conformist elite being led around by whatever fad is being pushed. I recently re-read ‘Atlas Shrugged’ and was amazed at how much the society she portrayed is like our present one. Rand was an optimist, however, and thought we would somehow overcome that dysfunctional society, I don’t share that optimism.

    A couple Neal Stephenson novels portray a believable future, too. Especially his portrayal of a future America broken up into different regional governments.

    • Replies: @Anon
  13. Anon[409] • Disclaimer says:
    @Stick

    Yeah but ever less materially. You can suspend their main social media accounts and block them on PayPal and, in the more important cases, have your hired typewriting hounds at your big magazines and papers declare them Nazi-fascists, and it seems to suffice.

    You’d have more physicality with the common folks at the wheel instead of the élite.

  14. Anon[409] • Disclaimer says:
    @Rich

    Oh, no!

    Élite are not led around by whatever novel fad is produced. They are the employers of the fad producers and spreaders, or, even, they own the fad-producing factories (like Hollywood).
    You probably mistake for élites some class of élite employees, like Congressmen…

    As for meritocracy, it can’t coexist with democracy because the common man’s main driver is envy of the more skilled.

  15. Mulegino1 says:

    The utopian promise of “Brave New World” (sex, drugs, rock and roll, freedom from responsibility, family ties, and tradition) will lead the swinish multitude of the cultural Marxist left straight down into the totalitarian dystopia that is “1984.”

    The only antidotes to the pendulum swing between absolute license and total repression are the mediating forces of thrones, altars, families and tradition.

  16. United Nations demands shut-down of Unz Review and silencing of Unz writers

    ‘Anti-migration media to become illegal’

    “Media reporting that is not sufficiently pro-migration cannot be tolerated”
    - Andrew Gilmour, UN Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights

    “What is proposed is an “extension of ‘hate speech’ … The criticism of migration will be a criminal offense … Media outlets that give room for criticism of migration, can be shut down.“
    - Warning by Dutch politician and European Parliament member Marcel de Graaff in the EU Parliament, regarding the:

    “Conference in Marrakech, Morocco on Dec. 11 and 12 where the U.N. Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration is to be signed. Though the pact is said to be non-binding, it is meant to establish the groundwork for an Orwellian campaign to cement mass migration as a human right legally above any and all criticism.”

    https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-11-30/criticism-migration-will-become-criminal-offense-says-european-parliamentary-leader

    • Replies: @Rosamond Vincy
  17. @another fred

    Sounds reasonable, if you ignore the extreme fragility of the current system, floating along on a sea of cheap oil. “Money” is proxy for energy, but only a proxy. It wouldn’t take much at all for the “unproductive masses” to banjax the supply chains necessary for our current hip and modren lifestyles, and there’s nothing the elites can do about it (especially as many are elite in name only, having no practical skills or knowledge).

    • Replies: @another fred
  18. While I generally enjoy reading John’s stuff I find this article a little unfocused. And I disagree with its main premise. We are not heading towards a 1984 or Brave New World future. The demographic changes in the West are happening way too fast. We have no predictive model to analyze what will happen. But if we look at the data from history and look at the the diverse parts of the world today; it doesn’t suggest a highly centralized form of governing as an outcome for the future “countries” of the West.

    A lot of it will depend which group will get the upper hand genetically in our countries. And this will be a biological battle. The outcomes will be largely driven by that. I am not sensing that Anglo-Saxons and other West Europeans know how aggressively they are meant to be pushed aside. And on this note – one of the dangers is that a small minority of biological West Europeans will wake up one day and just launch the nukes.

    But let’s say the nukes don’t get launched and the West just chooses to slip away silently like it did in Singapore, South Africa, and other places. In that case I believe the system is going to going to go into a fluctuating form of anarcho-tyranny that will move unpredictably all over map. Mexico and other places in Latin America is a good model: weak central governments, shifting criminal elements, end of objective morality, lots and lots of corruption, etc. I just find this model so depressing. And remember we will be much more diverse than Latin America if our elites have their way.

    The other model that I think was missed in this analysis is a system that already has hundreds of years of practice in very diverse places: Islam. Islam is a very powerful form of social control and I believe it is the way of the future for many places in Western countries. We will probably get a different form of it and it will feel different then in the middle East just as it does in East Asia. Again it depends on how we land genetically. This will not be a bad thing. We may need to embrace it. It may protect us against the virus to which we are now susceptible to. Cousin marriage will make a come back. The org levels will be regional and smaller – extended family level type thing. Gangs will be in. Police and the rest of it will be corrupt. Large inequality. Again not the most uplifting scenario.

    The last scenario which I think needs to be discussed and comes ahead of 1984 and Brave New World is technology singularity. AI will be here soon in some form. It may already be. Contrary to what most people think – there will most likely not be an “AI is here” announcement. It will just happen. In this scenario the outcomes may end badly for all of humanity. Or humanity may evolve with it (low probability).

    And finally there is a good chance we will end all human life on our planet via war or accident before we can leave in the next 100 years anyway. We don’t have the capability to deal with the consequences of the inventions of our brightest. This is at least 50% chance. The rest are the models above.

    No Brave New World. No 1984.

    • Replies: @peterAUS
    , @dfordoom
  19. @Anon

    Good piece. One way to look at the history is as a transition/replacement of the older Anglo-Saxon elites and their cultures with a new, meritocratic elite propped up by Rainbow Coalition politics, in which Jewish mandarins set the agenda via the bloc-voting of unskilled or alienated minorities for Democrats who respond to campaign donations.

    • Replies: @TomSchmidt
  20. peterAUS says:
    @Thoughts for the future

    Well thought out and put together post.

    And, YET…….which is the only reason I post my reply to the comment:
    May I ask……why did you omit to mention ONE other outcome there. Or, better that ONE, say, “method” (for the lack of better word) which could be used in future.
    Just curious……….
    I do have a theory, idea, why you didn’t mention it, just would like sort of confirmation.

    So….did the “method” even come to your mind?
    If it did, well….what did you think about it?
    And the last, but not the least, why didn’t you include it in your comment; just hint at it, use analogy, whatever?

    Again….simply curious, but, at the same time, does point to something interesting.

    Anyway…..all yours now.

  21. Antifa put up a good show; and yes, I certainly agree that they illustrate the principle of anarcho-tyranny very well, controlling the streets while leftist politicians stand down the police forces. As a force for generalized disorder, though, they are not impressive. Antifa would run like chickens from a whiff of grapeshot.

    The overall trend of our societies is Huxleyan. It is the trend Steven Pinker has famously described in his book Better Angels: towards a pacified, tranquillized, hedonistic caste society.
    ————————————
    I don’t see this being a stable situation. There isn’t any real reason for the underclass to not go after certain members of the elite. In this, I mean the situation is not for the right to attack antifa or protect free speech but to make the elite’s life a living nightmare.

  22. @another fred

    Barring that the masses can be convinced, once again, to play soldiers.

    You don’t make soldiers out of societies that have a median age wellinto the 30s or 40s. The USA has a lot of young people it could draft because it is large, but their percentage of the population is too small to do much with them. Also, they’re needed to slave to pay social security.

    I think the age of mass warfare is over, at least until the large number of old people die off.

    • Replies: @another fred
  23. @jack daniels

    Intriguing thought there. Ocasio-Cortez primaries out a white democrat, but he was drawn from the Irish-Italian urban democrat caste. The same thing happened in Boston; I think the last person of color elected to Congress from that state was Edward Brooke, Republican senator.

    Meanwhile, nearby, two Jewish Democrats represent the people of Westchester County. One’s district is majority minority. Elliott Engel did not get primaried out, however,since the black opposition was split in four, as opposed to only Ocasio-Cortez. 2020 will be interesting to watch.

  24. @TomSchmidt

    I think the age of mass warfare is over, at least until the large number of old people die off.

    I agree to the first part. That sentence was very poorly structured. I did not mean barring that, people will be be convinced etc., but barring that people can be convinced to bear arms in a mass as in times past, which I doubt. IOW I was allowing that my prediction would be negated if they did, but I do not hold that probability as a high one.

    What it would take to convince people to take up arms in that manner would be to convince them of an existential danger to them, which would be a hard sell. The Chinese and/or Russians will likely make moves in their spheres that the Globalists think they need to parry, but getting millions of Americans to take up arms is doubtful, IMO, no matter how many old people die.

  25. @Oleaginous Outrager

    It wouldn’t take much at all for the “unproductive masses” to banjax the supply chains necessary for our current hip and modren lifestyles…

    The hip modern lifestyles are not the only ones supported by the supply chains. There are very few people in this country capable of supporting themselves if the chains are broken. If anyone causes trouble in an emergency, I predict they will find the vast majority of the people against them. Please understand, I have well-armed friends who have as much of an ability to survive as most you will find outside of hardcore survivalist enclaves, but they will not be rising up against the government when TSHTF, they will be tending to their own needs. One of those needs will be having the authorities keep order.

    This will not be a video game.

  26. dfordoom says: • Website
    @Thoughts for the future

    Islam is a very powerful form of social control and I believe it is the way of the future for many places in Western countries. We will probably get a different form of it and it will feel different then in the middle East just as it does in East Asia. Again it depends on how we land genetically. This will not be a bad thing. We may need to embrace it. It may protect us against the virus to which we are now susceptible to.

    We don’t have many good options. In fact we don’t have any. Islam may be the least worst option. In the long term our survival requires the complete eradication of liberalism and feminism and Islam is probably the only force capable of doing that.

  27. in England in the early 1960s, a common exercise for sixth formers

    That’s interesting, because the anti-electronics activist Neil Postman made a tedious yet successful book out of that exercise 20 years later. (“Amusing_Ourselves_to_Death”)

  28. When you read Brave New World, you know there’s something badly wrong with it; but it’s surprisingly difficult to say what, exactly, that is.

    You have to have sex whether you want to or not: the reluctant kids at the sex play session; Bernard when he’s stuck between a pudgy chick and a uni-browed one at a new age ritual; Lenina when she goes scandalously monogamous, first over Henry, then over John Savage.

    There’s still bullying: Bernard, a grown man, is taunted and mocked as if he were still in high school, until he has something that gives him temporary status–after which they go right back to taunting and mocking him.

    The conditioning may be sometimes gentle (hypnopedia), but to make sure servile workers don’t get lost in mercantile dead-ends like books or flowers, and forget to keep busy buying consumer goods and engaging in socially sanctioned activities like electro-magnetic golf, they are electrically shocked and terrified by sirens–as babies.

    On the surface, it looks a lot more fun than 1984, but in Oceania, if the Youth League, the Spies, and the Junior Anti-Sex League haven’t indoctrinated you out of your soul while you’ve grown, you still have it. The Thought Police have to track you down and Room 101 has to torture you out of it.

    In Brave New World, all inhabitants are routinely deprived of souls. Those who somehow retain theirs are viewed as sad little freaks, by others and by themselves.

  29. DaninMD says:

    JD –

    The elites are making a comeback? Where? How?

    Maybe this is true but I am not seeing it. There is not a single example or bit of evidence given? Who are you talking about? Some names?

    George H.W. Bush’s funeral is happening right now. He was a genteel aristocrat. He tried to be a centrist and do what’s right. Bill Clinton on the other other side was a centrist, getting tough on crime and cracking down on welfare. Where are the new elite like that?

    Among the elite, I see three types:
    (1) A few rebels, like the Trumps, who dare to rise above the parapet, in the name of preserving the life they have known, and get shot at like crazy. It should not be a rebellious act to try to preserve civilization but apparently it is.
    (2) A larger group of the politically correct, who censor politically incorrect speakers and hit at the first group for status. Macron in France is the archetype. He burnishes his politically correct status by attacking nationalism and global warming unbelievers but he cannot confront or fix actual problems.
    (3) A third large group? The cowards like Bill Gates and Warren Buffett who have built great things but who dare not confront political correctness in any meaningful way. I dunno if they are biding their time, but it seems pretty late in the game.

    I feel so desperate for more elite, and more billionaires, to risk something to preserve their civilization. And then finally one of them speaks and half the time they are crying about global warming and you realize that, holy crap, they don’t SEE!

    In spite of big technology improvements, life expectancy has declined for three years in a row. That doesn’t tell me we are headed to a pseudo-utopia. It tells me the wheels are slipping off the wagon.

  30. @Brabantian

    Please tell me this is a joke, an exaggeration, or a paranoid conspiracy theory.

    Mind you, you don’t have to go very far to find some immigrants in my family, but while I would consider it tyranny not to let them out, I consider no country under positive obligation to let them in. I am grateful that they were allowed in, but that was a privilege, not a right. (Privilege in the nearly obsolete sense: “something regarded as a rare opportunity and bringing particular pleasure.”)

  31. David says:

    A whiff of grapeshot? How about the rattle of grapeshot? Whiff of powder?

    • Replies: @another fred
  32. @David

    “A whiff of grapeshot” is a fairly famous quote from Thomas Carlyle about Napoleon Bonaparte and his firing on a “Royalist” crowd/mob/army during an attack. The event brought a degree of order and approximately marks the end of the French Revolution.

    • Replies: @another fred
  33. David says:
    @another fred

    Thank you. I still hold reservations about the phrase but I see it has a fine pedigree!

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