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/pol/ - Politically Incorrect

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Come with me, on a journey upwards on this elevator. What kind of building are we escalating? We are going up the building of political ideologies. We start, naturally, on the first floor, or as Europeans would call it - the ground floor. What do we find on this floor? There are pictures of Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela all over the walls. There are words on the walls such as "oppression", "toleration" and "fairness". We are indeed on the floor of liberalism, or progressivism, or universalism. It is the hegemonic set of ideas which currently dominate political discourse in the Western world. Liberalism is very likely the first political ideology you came into contact with, whether you knew it or not. Where does it come from? When did it start to take form? Well, it depends on who you ask but just to keep things relatively simple, I'll say it emerged in the 18th century vis-a-vis the French revolution and gradually became hegemonic in the European context in the latter half of the 20th century. For liberals and ideologues to the left of them, the pursuit of equality is a moral good. The advancement of egalitarianism, the dissolution of class-based societies is seen as desirable and inevitable. All men are equal and all of the perceived ills which have befallen man (and women too, don't you forget it!) are the result of oppression from men in high places. Institutional racism and the patriarchy are two forms of this oppression and the liberation of the perceived victim groups is the ultimate goal.
The left/right split in political debate is asymmetrical in our culture, with a tendency towards the former side. Look around you, liberal ideas are everywhere. In media, music, academia, news, art, the corporate world, every facet of the culture. Yes it is true to say that right-wing political parties exist which oppose liberalism and yes they do indeed win elections from time to time. However the culture is largely defined by liberals and leftists. Liberals seek to advance humanity (and they do mean all of humanity, liberalism is universal in its outlook) through the push for more equality, for more groups to be liberated from their chains and they have made a considerable amount of progress in a relatively short space of time. Look at what your mainstream right-wing party stands for and compare it to 20, 30 years ago. As liberals move further towards "progress", they bring the entire society with them, even their political opponents. From a purely operational perspective, liberals have achieved a considerable degree of progress.

Very well, shall we move to the next floor?
Ding! We have arrived on the second floor, let's step out and have a look around. What do we see? There are portraits of Regan and Margaret Thatcher on the wall. Ah yes, modern mainstream conservatism. What exactly is conservatism? Well, it is slightly more difficult to define than liberalism because much of is what is considered conservative today would have been regarded as liberal 100 years ago. Therefore, conservatism, just like liberalism, is fluid to some degree. Nevertheless, conservatives are broadly in favor of smaller government, of lower taxation and in patriotism. The problem though is that conservatives are terrified of moving beyond the center-right. They are petrified of the prospect of using ideologically more radical ideas. All the while, the left is allowed to flirt with its more radical forms. Wave a Soviet flag and you'll probably get a few odd stares in your direction. Wave the flag of a radical right-wing regime from the 20th century and you may very well lose your job. In essence, conservatives believe what their liberal overlords permit them to believe. There are a few residual conservatives on the fringes, the likes of Pat Buchanan, who are on the verge of the current political dispensation, but the moment you step outside you will be ostracized from wider society. Because of this, conservatives ostensibly frame their arguments within the liberal zeitgeist. They criticize particular elements of liberalism but they are afraid of actually philosophically stepping outside of the liberal mindset. As such, they can be viewed as the political rearguard.

Onwards and upwards?
Ding! Here we are now on the third floor. There's a portrait of Ayn Rand, there's several copies of books by Milton Friedman and Hayek scattered on a table.


Liberty above all else - says a poster on the wall. It's interesting to note that many libertarians tend to be disaffected conservatives. Dissatisfied by the political argument being framed by liberals, libertarians have taken it upon themselves to construct a coherent, philosophically based position from the ground-up. Freedom, or liberty, is the highest value according to libertarians. The yoke of big government must be done away with and instead, societies should be organized according to the principles of voluntarism and freedom of association. One of the interesting features of libertarianism is the respect that they accord to their opponents. They truly do believe in unmitigated, uncompromising freedom of speech. To libertarians, the invisible hand of the market is the most efficient, the most reliable guiding force in economics. They assert that once government regulation is removed from the machinations of the market, individuals will be free to engage effectively with the market and hence prosper from their entrepreneurial endeavors. Economically, libertarianism is very clear that market forces are good, but socially, libertarianism is quite ambiguous. This is of course one of its weaknesses. If you do not have a clearly defined social order, what is stopping bands of left-wing vanguards from coalescing, mobilizing the masses and seizing power? Libertarians would argue that such an event would not occur because the unfettered market would satisfy the material needs of the masses and hence would result in stability. I remain unconvinced, but that's just me. Let's get back in the elevator shall we?
Ding! Floor four. We are greeted by a man in boots and military uniform. Immediately we see a bust of Mussolini. Flags and banners drape the walls. Ah yes, this would be the fascist floor. Fascism is an odd ideology in its formulation because the key architect, one Benito Mussolini, was of course a leftist in his earlier years. And not just any old leftist, a rather militant one. "Ah!" shrieks the conservative, "Fascism IS left-wing", as he distances himself from the ideology. Not so fast I say. Let's examine some of its precepts before we make such a definitive conclusion. Yes, Mussolini was a man of the left, as was Sir Oswald Mosley in the British context, but what did their shared ideology value in its most distilled form? There is a notable absence of egalitarianism. Yes, unlike conservatives, the fascists have unapologetically ripped equality from their platform. Ohhh, this is starting to get dark I hear you say. Fascists, unlike their communist and liberal opponents acknowledge the gaps in the social order but they do not want to close these gaps via class warfare. Instead these elements of society work in concert with the state. Fascism is very clear on the power and the utility of state power in order to achieve certain outcomes. This celebration of state control takes the form of military parades and long, impassioned speeches from Il Duce. Fascism is remarkably theatrical in its manifestation, a sort of realization of Wagner's Gesamtkunstwerk or "total art". All elements of the society come together and put on these grand displays of loyalty and pride in the nation. Fascism takes a vitalist approach to life. Every waking second is spent defending the nation or attacking perceived enemies. Democracy appears as a rather dubious impediment to the pursuit of glory.

The uniformed man approaches us again and urges us to move on. Very well, back in the elevator we go.
Ding! Floor four. We step outside. We walk towards a table in the center of the room and we find several books written by Joseph de Maistre and Julius Evola. "Revolt Against the Modern World" one is titled. Gosh, that seems a bit transgressive! Yes, this is the traditionalist floor. In here we find a total opposition to liberal ideas. Egalitarianism is straight out the window. Democracy, the great value of our era is brought into question. Is it wise to allow the masses to determine their destiny? Is it helpful to our civilization to allow the lumpen masses to participate in the political process? "No!" - we are told resolutely. We start tugging at our collars, gee that's a bit illiberal! What we find on this floor is a total rejection of the precepts of liberalism which have convulsed the Western world for the past few centuries. We start to hear the articulation of ideas which are explicitly anti-egalitarian, which are elitist, which uphold the importance of hierarchy and forms of governance such as royalism, which tell us of the importance of tradition. We start to view ideologies such as fascism, not from a left-wing perspective, but from a right-wing one. Which advocate for ideological positions which are totally outside the current political dispensation. The "niceness", the "inclusion" and the "tolerance" which liberalism advocates for is shredded in front of our eyes. We begin to consider partly demonic ideas (demonic in the current cultural milieu). Wow, perhaps the liberal view of history, as an account of struggle against perceived authoritarian ideas has been, largely, a tragedy, a farce - has been detrimental to our own civilizations.

I'm starting to get a bit hot under the collar, perhaps we shall leave it at there?
Go on...
File: when it kicks in.gif (252 KB, 130x158)
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WELL nigger ?

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