What is neo-reaction?

Marginal Revolution inadvertently demonstrates why both NRx and the #AltRight are rapidly growing at the expense of progressivism and conservatism by attempting to define neo-reaction while failing to grasp how completely modern liberalism has failed the West:

1. “Culturism” is in general correct, namely that some cultures are better than others.  You want to make sure you are ruled by one of the better cultures.  In any case, one is operating with a matrix of rule.

2. The historical ruling cultures for America and Western Europe — two very successful regions — have largely consisted of white men and have reflected the perspectives of white men.  This rule and influence continues to work, however, because it is not based on either whiteness or maleness per se.  There is a nominal openness to the current version of the system, which fosters competitive balance, yet at the end of the day it is still mostly about the perspectives of white men and one hopes this will continue.  By the way, groups which “become white” in their outlooks can be allowed into the ruling circle.

3. Today there is a growing coalition against the power and influence of (some) white men, designed in part to lower their status and also to redistribute their wealth.  This movement may not be directed against whiteness or maleness per se (in fact some of it can be interpreted as an internal coup d’etat within the world of white men), but still it is based on a kind of puking on what made the West successful.  And part and parcel of this process is an ongoing increase in immigration to further build up and cement in the new coalition.  Furthermore a cult of political correctness makes it very difficult to defend the nature of the old coalition without fear of being called racist; in today’s world the actual underlying principles of that coalition cannot be articulated too explicitly.  Most of all, if this war against the previous ruling coalition is not stopped, it will do us in.

4. It is necessary to deconstruct and break down the current dialogue on these issues, and to defeat the cult of political correctness, so that a) traditional rule can be restored, and/or b) a new and more successful form of that rule can be introduced and extended.  Along the way, we must realize that calls for egalitarianism, or for that matter democracy, are typically a power play of one potential ruling coalition against another.

5. Neo-reaction is not in love with Christianity in the abstract, and in fact it fears its radical, redistributive, and egalitarian elements.  Neo-reaction is often Darwinian at heart.  Nonetheless Christianity-as-we-find-it-in-the-world often has been an important part of traditional ruling coalitions, and thus the thinkers of neo-reaction are often suspicious of the move toward a more secular America, which they view as a kind of phony tolerance.

6. If you are analyzing political discourse, ask the simple question: is this person puking on the West, the history of the West, and those groups — productive white males — who did so much to make the West successful?  The answer to that question is very often more important than anything else which might be said about the contributions under consideration.

Already I can see (at least) four problems with this point of view.  First, white men in percentage terms have become a weaker influence in America over time, yet America still is becoming a better nation overall.  Second, some of America’s worst traits, such as the obsession with guns, the excess militarism, or the tendency toward drunkenness, not to mention rape and the history of slavery, seem to come largely from white men.  Third, it seems highly unlikely that “white men” is in fact the best way of disambiguating the dominant interest groups that have helped make the West so successful.  Fourth, America is global policeman and also the center of world innovation, so it cannot afford the luxury of a declining population, and thus we must find a way to make immigration work.

The six points of description are largely correct, so I will content myself with responding to what he sees as the four problems with the neo-reactive point of view.

  1. America is not becoming a better nation. The American nation has been invaded and swallowed up by a liberal multicultural empire that is distinctly inferior in almost every way to the nation it has conquered and suppressed.
  2. This is blatant stupidity. Slavery was never a white invention and most rape in the USA is committed by blacks. White gun violence rates are equal to Holland; blacks are entirely responsible for the high US gun violence rates. The USA has no tendency towards drunkenness; at 9.2 liters per capita per year, it consumes less alcohol on average than nearly every European nation and ranks 46th globally.
  3. This isn’t even an argument, let alone a convincing one. It’s an appeal to personal incredulity combined with political correctness. Whether it seems highly unlikely or not, the fact is that an absence of white men has reliably correlated with a failure to imitate the successes of white culture.
  4. America doesn’t have to be a global policeman and there is no way to “make immigration work”. Innovation is not about numbers; see Scotland and the Industrial Revolution for just one obvious example.

This is not a serious critique, let alone a convincing one. If these are the “problems” with neo-reaction, then obviously we should all be neo-reactionaries. Tyler Cowen is more intelligent than the average cuckservative, but he is still too cucky to abandon his emotional commitment to equalitarianism.

Every philosophy must sooner or later choose to accommodate or reject reality. Progressivism, liberalism, libertarianism, and conservatism all require the rejection of readily observable reality. They are intrinsically dyscivic, and worse, dyscivilizational. That is why they are doomed to eventual failure and irrelevance.