The doors had been opened and I could leave, I’d finally been allowed to head for the exit…to have knowledge of an exit, but where was I to go, where to now? I’d left the comfort and warmth of an apathetic cocoon that was heading towards a nothingness. Now, stranded I had become a nomad of political thought, without attachment, existing in flux between -isms and -ologies, and without need or want to be once again suffocated, but a direction was needed, to stand absolutely still would be almost worse than my previous dwelling. So what of those who I so scorned, the right-wing, the Tories, the Nationalists, the ‘Mails’? All this time I had known what they said simply could-not fit in with my world-view, but now?
Instead of venturing into the truly dark recesses of simply another ignorance, into an antithesis of the prior, I noted the recent. The reactionaries are here, they’re making some noise, some strange prefix-nationalist, techno-suffix noise that seems odd, new, honest? There was potential, and so I began my descent into a world I never thought I’d want to work out, or justify. Why there first of all? If you were to leave a cage of your own creation, would you not want to experience what you told yourself you shouldn’t?
I ventured to Google, which in turn directed to me to Wikipedia: The Dark Enlightenment and Neoreaction. I’d heard of the last one, but the others not so much, so I began, a new ignorance, however this time, I hoped, only containing a material ignorance of history and not that of substance and hypocrisy.
“Neo-reactionaries head for the exit.” that’s how this thing starts, damn. An acknowledgement that they want out, that there’s an ‘in’, a widely accepted elusive ‘inside’ and it’s being questioned, good. The piece was illuminating…de-luminating? See for yourself.
“I no longer believe that freedom and democracy are compatible.” a quote within TDE referencing this article from ‘09: “Cyberspace, outer-space and seasteading”, possibilities of exit.
As my brain begins to tumble further towards an expanse of possibility, of reminiscence towards my previous control.
“winning elections is overwhelmingly a matter of vote buying, and society’s informational organs (education and media) are no more resistant to bribery than the electorate, a thrifty politician is simply an incompetent politician, and the democratic variant of Darwinism quickly eliminates such misfits from the gene pool.” – TDE
I was ‘in’, bought, paid-for and housed…
“Where the progressive enlightenment sees political ideals, the dark enlightenment sees appetites.” – TDE
“As the democratic virus burns through society, painstakingly accumulated habits and attitudes of forward-thinking, prudential, human and industrial investment, are replaced by a sterile, orgiastic consumerism, financial incontinence, and a ‘reality television’ political circus. “- TDE
…controlled and entertained, they say the ‘Alternative-facts’ boosted sales of Orwell’s 1984, yet Huxley’s Brave New World seems more appropriate.
“By cropping out all high-frequency feedback mechanisms (such as market signals), and replacing them with sluggish, infra-red loops that pass through a centralized forum of ‘general will’, a radically democratized society insulates parasitism from what it does, transforming local, painfully dysfunctional, intolerable, and thus urgently corrected behavior patterns into global, numbed, and chronic socio-political pathologies. “- TDE
“Once it is accepted universally, or, speaking more practically, by all social forces wielding significant cultural power, that intolerance is intolerable, political authority has legitimated anything and everything convenient to itself, without restraint. “- TDE
“Firstly, the crime is augmented by a purely ideational, ideological, or even ‘spiritual’ element, attesting not only to a violation of civilized conduct, but also to a heretical intention. This facilitates the complete abstraction of hate from criminality, whereupon it takes the form of ‘hate-speech’ or simply ‘hate’ (which is always to be contrasted with the ‘passion’, ‘outrage’, or righteous ‘anger’ represented by critical, controversial, or merely abusive language directed against unprotected groups, social categories, or individuals). ‘Hate’ is an offense against the Cathedral itself, a refusal of its spiritual guidance, and a mental act of defiance against the manifest religious destiny of the world.”-TDE
“Secondly, and relatedly, ‘hate’ is deliberately and even strategically asymmetrical in respect to the equilibrium political polarity of advanced democratic societies. Between the relentless march of progress and the ineffective grouching of conservatism it does not vacillate. As we have seen, only the right can ‘hate’. As the doxological immunity system of ‘hate’ suppression is consolidated within elite educational and media systems, the highly selective distribution of protections ensures that ‘discourse’ – especially empowered discourse – is ratcheted consistently to the left, which is to say, in the direction of an ever more comprehensively radicalized Universalism. The morbidity of this trend is extreme.”-TDE
“At its most abstract and all-encompassing, the liberal-progressive racial dialectic abolishes its outside, along with any possibility of principled consistency. It asserts — at one and the same time — that race does not exist, and that its socially-constructed pseudo-existence is an instrument of inter-racial violence.”-TDE
All of the above quotes are from Nick Land’s – The Dark Enlightenment, which can be found here.
I stopped a little short with the quotes, I was engrossed, that’s not to say I agreed with everything Land was saying – not by a long shot – namely that what he was saying was so completely free that the process of reading became rather epiphanic in itself. Filled to the brim with pop-culture analogies, complex political understanding, stats, tech-adoration and a general sense of being written whilst sat next to Deckard, at least, if anything, TDE is original, in an ‘outside’ sense.
Within TDE I found there was often talk of a person called Mencius Moldbug, the pen name of Curtis Yarvin an American political theorist, computer scientist and ‘founding’ neoreactionary, he’s been called (by Land) the Sith Lord of the movement. It seems Moldbug stopped posting to his neoreactionary focused blog Unqualified Reservations in April 2014, with one update to confirm this in 2016, however since then fellow reactionaries have done a very good job of compiling Moldbug’s key writings into neat packages which can be found here and the ‘formalist manifesto (FM)’ I reference is here.
So, where are we now headed, well, it seems Moldbug is reiterating a lot of the points Land is making, well, actually, Moldbug was writing ‘directly’ about reactionary/DE thought before Land, publicly that is, however it was Land who coined the term Dark Enlightenment.
“The other day I was tinkering around in my garage and I decided to build a new ideology.” – FM
Yeah, Land and Moldbug really know how to write an opener. The nonchalant creation of a new ideology is precisely how Moldbug’s manifesto begins.
Moldbug continues to discuss Progressivism and Conservatism. Slating both, of course. Note: My escape from both (strangely) was caused by the Post-Brexit dialogue, discussed in my previous post. So, two of the main factions of politics are out of the window, both of which have been discussed in serious depth throughout reactionary writing, where to now…neutral?
“In my experience, most sensible people consider themselves “moderate,” “centrist,” “independent,” “unideological,” “pragmatic,” “apolitical,” etc. Considering the vast tragedies wrought by 20th-century politics, this attitude is quite understandable. It is also, in my opinion, responsible for most of the death and destruction in the world today…” – FM
…the problem with moderation is that the “center” is not fixed. It moves. And since it moves, and people being people, people will try to move it. This creates an incentive for violence – something we formalists try to avoid.”- FM
Shit. Moldbug briefly mentions libertarianism and the Mises Insititute, of course implementation of a libertarian society would be difficult, so what’s next: Formalism.
“Replacing your own ideology is a lot like do-it-yourself brain surgery. It requires patience, tolerance, a high pain threshold, and very steady hands…”-FM
…There is no point in starting this messy experiment only to install some other ideology that’s the way it is just because someone said so. Formalism, as we’ll see, is an ideology designed by geeks for other geeks. It’s not a kit. It doesn’t come with batteries. You can’t just pop it in. At best, it’s a rough starting point to help you build your own DIY ideology. If you’re not comfortable working with a table saw, an oscilloscope and an autoclave, formalism is not for you.”-FM
And I shall also throw in some other gems from Moldbug’s Open Letter:
“But you have not shared humanity’s experience. You have only read, heard and seen a corpus of text, audio and video compiled from it. And compiled by whom?” – Open Letter
Moldbug proceeds to mention (in his open letter) that just because you are or were a progressive doesn’t mean you now have to become a conservative, that maybe, just maybe, Fox News and NPR are both wrong, The Guardian and The Daily Mail are both wrong, Moldbug states that: “neither of them has any consistent relationship to reality.”- Open Letter (Note: He doesn’t mention the latter 2 examples). Millions of progressives believe conservatism is a mass delusion, and millions of conservatives believe…
Apologies for the mass copy-and-pasting going on here, but I’m attempting to describe a way, a journey, towards what Moldbug calls a ‘DIY ideology’, however, the point of this write-up is to articulate a point, a point that Moldbug also brings up:
“…only to install some other ideology.” – FM
This post, I hope at least in some minor way will show prior to some strange ideology creation one must understand completely the current scope of their thought, if you’re still within the confines of Progressivism or Conservatism one would only be installing or creating some off-brand-ism the likes of which will of course fail. Moldbug’s formalism is aimed primarily at the U.S., in terms of the manifesto anyway, either than or I’m very short-sighted., thus I shall stop there in regards to its aims.
That said, here I am, I’ve gone through a couple of blenders and exited the other site a pulsing sludge, whose brain is reforming itself with larger exits and better entry-filtration systems. This isn’t to say I’ve found some new gospel in the Neoreaction movement, not at all, in fact I think to do so would be act the same as I was previously, except this time without years and years of prog indoctrination to help me. Moldbug’s idea of a DIY ideology fascinates me, and I believe it’s a great starting point out of the exit, the journey onwards I believe should be nomadic and tiresome, filled with exhausting readings of concealed books, criticism of critics who work within what they criticise, to not be so fucking blind.
It sort of pains me to have to do this, even within mind.com’s anonymous being, however I want to state some things very clearly as certain people may wrongly read-between-the-lines here, so:
Firstly, I understand that The Dark Enlightenment and Neoreaction are seen as a pair of roots for the Alt-right, I do NOT support the alt-right, Richard Spencer is a horrific example of a person, and a great example of ignorance and moving from one ideology to another, without thought of an outside.
Secondly, even though I have quoted in depth TDE and NRx, I do not support them, I hope this will become clearer in Part 4, where I talk of the dangers of adhering to an ideology in a generalized sense.
Thirdly, you may be thinking “So why did you use them as examples?” because they were the ones who opened the doors for me, now, just because they opened the doors doesn’t mean I am then at their will, in their act of opening, I became aware of the possibility of an outside. Put simply, they helped me think far more freely than I ever have, and it was via their rather controversial opinions of values never questioned that I arrived at where am I.
Much of this will be extrapolated on in Part 4.
LINKS IN ORDER:
ESCAPING THE ECHO PREVIOUS PARTS:
https://www.meta-nomad.net/?p=80 PART 1
https://www.meta-nomad.net/?p=82 PART 2