The Great Debate

The first of Robert Conquest’s Three Laws of politics is “Everyone is conservative about what he knows best.” A corollary to this could be that everyone is humorless about what he believes most. The ideologue will tolerate no joking about the things he is sure are the pillars of the universe. The left-winger will laugh uproariously at jokes about white people but fly into a purple-faced rage when the targets turn darker.

An example of this is a post on Lew Rockwell by David Gordon in response to this post about the swinging of the political poles. The offending line seems to have been this one about the state of conservatism. “National Review now reads like Von Mises Center for Transgender Studies.” Mr. Gordon has spent his life in the Austrian School subculture so he will not tolerate any joking around about it.

Mr. Gordon was so enraged by this quip that he must have had an aneurysm and confused the post with something else. He responded to points that were never made, somehow thinking that the Von Mises Institute was the point of the column. His reply, however, is a useful companion piece to the original post, because it reveals something about the other side of that long-ago ideological battle.

“Maybe in the 1980s corporate America was the target of the left, but today they are at the top of the progressive stack.”

That is, the old coalition of the right—Buckley-style conservatives, Trotskyites, libertarians, and traditionalists—is trapped in the past, just like the hypothetical left-winger from the original Taki post. Unable or unwilling to update their firmware to the current age, they continue to look for the same battles they fought back when people believed economics were the heart of politics.

You see this with the mild unrest in Cuba. Conservative Inc. has jumped on the story in a frenzy of onanistic nostalgia. They have dusted off the old lines about economics that they thought mattered back during the Cold War. More important, it lets them speak publicly about a news item without angering the newly installed diversity consultants that must approve all of their utterances.

It is one of the many strange things about this age. That old coalition of the right not only remains firmly in place, but they remain trapped in the past. The Buckley-style conservatives drone on about their principles. The neoconservatives are back to looking under their beds for Ramón Mercader, and the libertarians are prattling on about capitalism. Only the social conservatives seem to have updated their outlook, so they are being purged from the coalition, because that is what conservatives love most.

To return to Mr. Gordon’s screed, he writes, “The contemporary left continues, as always, to be against capitalism. Who are the progressives Z has in mind? Bernie Sanders? Thomas Piketty?” This is a good example of the Rip Van Winkle mindset that is emblematic of the old coalition of the right. Mr. Gordon appears to have missed the past two years of left-wing proselytizing from corporate America.

Maybe in the 1980s corporate America was the target of the left, but today they are at the top of the progressive stack. The NFL is now politically gay, along with every other sports league. Hollywood has unleashed a tsunami of antiwhite propaganda on the country. Silicon Valley actively works with the left to suppress enemies of the progressive faith. Wall Street denies people access to the financial system if they have the wrong thoughts.

Note also that the radicals in the streets, in the classrooms, and in the media enjoy unconditional support from corporate America. If we still enforced truth in advertising, Antifa protesters would be festooned with ads like race car drivers. The past eighteen months of civil unrest were made possible by capitalists. They say they love “free markets,” but what they really seem to love is the war on white people.

Throughout much of the 20th century, libertarianism was a shelter from the cultural revolution unleashed by the left. Libertarians were allowed to pretend the sidelines were the moral high ground, while their alleged allies on the right were ground to bits in the gears of the revolution. This arrangement was allowed because Austrian School economics were a useful antidote to Marxist moralizing about economics.

That was then and this now. The debate now is not over how best to distribute goods and services. Economics is a tool. What matters, what has always mattered, is who wields that tool. This is the great debate of this age. On one side are hostile aliens who view white people as a pestilence that must be eradicated. On the other is perhaps the last generation of Western man, desperate to keep the lamps of civilization burning.


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