Category Archives: Society and Culture

The Much-Needed Gap

Here‘s Christina Hoff Sommers on the widespread and persistent myth of the sexist “wage gap”.

Murray On Middlebury

Following on our earlier post — and with thanks to our commenter Jason for the link — here are Charles Murray’s own remarks on having been assaulted by a violent leftist mob at Middlebury College last week. We read (the item refers to Professor Allison Stanger, who had invited Mr. Murray for an interview, and […]

No Hate Here!

  We’ve been hearing a lot about how the election of Donald Trump has brought a lot of haters out into the open. As Mr. Trump himself might say: so true. Here’s a thing that happened two days ago: MIDDLEBURY — Middlebury College Professor Allison Stanger was injured by protesters Thursday evening as she was […]

Salem 2017

A couple of months ago I was contacted by a woman named Lucy Diego, who was putting together an anthology of neoreactionary essays and wanted to know if she might use some of what I’ve written here. (I was happy to agree.) Ms. Diego runs an art gallery in London that last year mounted an […]

Closing The Circle

A couple of weeks ago I picked up a copy of The Outline of History, written in 1920 by H.G. Wells. I’m halfway through the first volume of two. It’s a fine example of post-WWI Progressive-era thinking, and Mr. Wells was of course a wonderful craftsman, so I’ve been enjoying it enormously. (The entire book […]

Land’s End

In its ongoing purge of all heterodox opinion, Twitter has now suspended Nick Land’s account, @Outsideness. They have no possible pretext for doing so, other than the suppression and silencing of ideological dissidents. Nick Land has never threatened anyone, nor even used a profane word. If you have any doubt that there is now an […]

Stockholm Syndrome

There’s been quite a fuss about Donald Trump’s having suggested that Sweden might be having problems digesting millions of profoundly alien, mostly Muslim, immigrants. The narrative conflict could not be starker: on the one side, a description of a formerly safe, homogeneous and peaceful Scandinavian nation descending into a darkening abyss of rape, fear, cultural […]

Ourobouros

With a hat-tip to Bill Valicella, here’s an item, by Alex Ross for The New Yorker, arguing that the Frankfurt School foresaw the rise of Donald Trump. Did they? Well, we shouldn’t be surprised, because they labored to create exactly the ideological conditions in the postwar West — the deadly mind-virus of radical and pathologically […]

The Devil You Know

In September 2015 I commented on the increasing political polarization of Europe, and the extent to which any middle ground was increasingly excluded. A longish auto-quote: … [T]he entire continuum of political opinion on the question of immigration and and of the ethnic and religious composition of European nations has now been reduced, editorially, to […]

Give Me The Child…

The National Association of Scholars has published a new report entitled “Making Citizens: How American Universities Teach Civics”. From the “executive summary”: A new movement in American higher education aims to transform the teaching of civics. This report is a study of what that movement is, where it came from, and why Americans should be […]

Outed

It turns out that “Publius Decius Mus”, who wrote the influential essay “The Flight 93 Election” back in September (we commented on it here) is Michael Anton, a former editor of the Journal of American Greatness. He is now a member, I’m glad to say, of the Trump administration. Therefore he is also a Nazi. […]

What Now?

In my previous post I mentioned the fault-lines dividing the nation, and said it seemed the ground was beginning to shake. There’s no question that the West’s tectonic plates, which have been locked for a long time now, have begun to slip; the collapse of the Democratic Party, and the ascension of Donald Trump, could […]

Sex And Violins

As tempting as it’s been, I haven’t commented here about the recent “women’s march”. (Anyway, it would be hard to top the succinct remark left by “The Anti-Gnostic” at Steve Sailer’s blog, so I won’t try.) Here, though, is some worthwhile contrarianism from Margaret Wente, writing at the Globe and Mail. Related content from Sphere

Donald Vs. The Gorgon

With concatenated hat-tips to our friends Horace Jeffery Hodges and Bill Vallicella, here is a superb essay on the Trumpian assault on the postmodernism that has had a death-grip on Western culture for some time now (and which, I have argued, has its roots in the radical skepsis that was born in the Enlightenment itself). […]

Inaugural Balls

Finally, to borrow a phrase from another presidential transition, “our long national nightmare is over.” That was quite a speech Mr. Trump gave today (video here, transcript here). Yes, it had its moments of hyperbole — we will not, for example, be eradicating Islamic terrorism from the face of the Earth any time soon, I […]

Everything Good Is Evil

Among today’s emails was a solicitation from an online gift-shop called The Grommet. What were they trying to sell me on this cold January morning? Something called hygge: a Danish word (pronounced ‘hue-gah’) that the advertisement defined as “coziness, warmth, and contentment through the enjoyment of life’s simple pleasures.” You get the picture (quite literally […]

Narrative Collapse. As Usual.

Well here we go again. Goodwhites (many of whom, I’ll confess, are my friends) have been aghast about all the “hate” unleashed among badwhites during the Trump ascenscion. Just look! — here’s a sweet young Muslim woman assailed by Trumpist bigots on the subway, while out at Nassau County Community College some sociopath, his mind […]

Three Years On

In the wake of the latest attacks in Europe, I’m re-linking to a post I wrote in April of 2013, in which I coined the term “Cultural Immunodeficiency Virus” to describe the lethal memetic pathogen affecting the West. The post seems to me as relevant now as it did then. Read it here. Related content […]

They Grind Exceeding Small

I’ve written before about the fractal nature of social grievance, and the curious inversion of status that is only made possible by comfortable political and material conditions. Back in 2014, I had this to say: As I’ve said before (see here and here), “injustice” is fractal. (Zoom out and you get slavery, the Holocaust, ISIS; […]

Feeling Their Pain

This ruction over “Fake News” is fascinating. There are so many angles and interests. I won’t say much here (tonight, at least) about some of the more widely discussed angles on this story — freedom of speech, the struggle for power, or the general deliquescence of the very idea of Truth, of which this latest […]

Well Said, Fred

I haven’t linked to Fred Reed in a while, but he continues to do what he does best: writing plain common sense. His latest, from the first of this month, is about gun control. Excerpts: The two most heavily armed countries in the world are (still, I think) Israel and Switzerland. In Switzerland, men of […]

In Science Consensus Is Irrelevant

I’ve been on the road today, with no time for writing. So for tonight we have for you an evergreen speech by the late Michael Crichton on how real science works. Money quote: In science consensus is irrelevant. What is relevant is reproducible results. The greatest scientists in history are great precisely because they broke […]

Flags, Speech, and Symbols

Not long ago I had a little rhubarb on Twitter with my old e-pal Kevin Kim on the subject of flag-burning. Kevin had quoted George Carlin’s remark that he preferred to leave symbols to the “symbol-minded”. The meaning of Mr. Carlin’s remark, and of Kevin’s quoting it, is clear enough: that the flag is just […]

This

With a hat-tip to our friend Bill Keezer, we give you a rousing essay by Daniel Greenfield on what has just happened in America. It begins: This wasn’t an election. It was a revolution. It’s midnight in America. The day before fifty million Americans got up and stood in front of the great iron wheel […]

Tilting At Windmills

I (and many others) have written often about the obvious religiosity of Progressivism, and about its being, quite plainly and transparently, a secular continuation and direct descendant of the Puritan “mission into the wilderness”. A particularly instructive aspect of this atheistic quest for holiness and salvation is the patently crypto-religious “climate-change” crusade. Early last year, […]

To-Do List

From Patrick Buchanan yesterday: a call to action in the wake of victory. Here. This “magnanimity” business is certainly attracting a lot of attention. (More on that later.) Meanwhile, see the discussion at the Maverick Philosopher, here. Related content from Sphere

Ignoracracy

It’s awfully (though darkly) amusing to hear, in the wake of Mr. Trump’s election, all the cries from the streets denouncing his supporters as ‘Fascists’. The word, of course, has nearly been drained of all meaning, and like ‘racist’, is now little more than a cudgel for the faithful to use against anyone from whom […]

The Morning After

Well! Here we stand, on the morrow of our victory. In this glorious dawn, let us survey the battlefield. The Clintons are finished, done. Their political careers are over, and the parasitic criminal syndicates they run, which draw their life’s-blood by selling access to power, have been expelled by the host. Each of them has […]

Sobornost

I have noted often in these pages that in the absence of a natural and organic social framework, order must be imposed artificially from the “top down”. Here, for example, is an excerpt from a 2014 post, The Death of Culture: To create the new metaculture, muticulturalism cannot not add cultures together, due to the […]

We Need to Start Leaving Each Other Alone

It should be obvious to all at this point that a very great part of our nation’s political sickness is due to the ever-increasing concentration of power in the hands of the Federal leviathan in Washington, at the expense of local government. (That this is, even at this late stage of the disease, not obvious […]

The American Heartland As Viscoelastic Liquid: A Case Study

From the Wall Street Journal today: Places Most Unsettled by Rapid Demographic Change Are Drawn to Donald Trump ARCADIA, Wis.—Small towns in the Midwest have diversified more quickly than almost any part of the U.S. since the start of an immigration wave at the beginning of this century. The resulting cultural changes appear to be […]

Forensic Entomology

From the Express: A migrant turf war erupted into violence on the streets of one of Paris’ trendiest neighbourhoods early this morning as asylum seekers beat each other to a pulp with wooden clubs. Story and video here. A defining characteristic of a living organism is the maintenance of its internal order, and of its […]

Sublime Injustice

In a post from 2013, we quoted Will and Ariel Durant on the persistent delusion of Equality. The pursuit of an unattainable equality has been a reliable political implement throughout the modern history of the West, despite the natural impossibility of its achievement. Since Nature (here meaning total reality and its processes) has not read […]

Caste And Character

Tonight’s reading assignment is an outstanding essay, Weaving the Basket of Deplorables, recently posted at the site The Dissenting Sociologist. Its epopseudonymous author (sorry, but I felt the need for a name that’s both an eponym and a pseudonym), whom I shall call DS, has done a masterful job of distilling and clarifying some core […]

Got Me!

Just now I put up a post linking to a Washington Post article about simulated violence in football. “Not parody”, I said, and mocked its author. I’ve changed my mind, and taken down the post. The article is parody — well done, and richly deserved. A good example of Poe’s Law, either way. Related content […]

P. P. P.

When the Rachel Dolezal story popped up in June of 2015 (if you’re fortunate enough to have forgotten this one, she was a “black” activist who turned out, embarrassingly, not to be black at all), I wrote a little post about real versus fictional privilege. An excerpt: Once upon a time, people of mixed race […]

After The Republic

It’s September, and the lovely fall weather is here. Feeling refreshed and optimistic? Well, snap out of it. Need some help with that? This jeremiad, by the distinguished scholar Angelo Codevilla, ought to do the trick. Related content from Sphere

How Do You Solve A Problem Like The Alt-Right?

Milo Yiannopoulos explains. (He’s happy to do so, because he knows the Left won’t take his advice.) An excerpt: As well as jokes, there’s something else that establishment elites need to stop demonizing as racism: national pride. During the 2015 election in England, a left-wing candidate for parliament called people who fly the English flag […]

All Power Rests In Belief

The American author Lionel Shriver recently gave a keynote speech at a writers festival in Brisbane, Australia. Rather than give the talk she had advertised, she decided to say a few words about the victimological specialty known as “cultural appropriation”. She denounced and anathematized it root and branch, and said, very clearly and correctly, that […]

One Way — Or The Other

One thing that should be clear to all in this election cycle: either Hillary Clinton is going to win this election, or Donald Trump is. The chance of any other outcome is effectively zero. If you are any sort of conservative — and if you believe, as I and millions of others do, that the […]

Temporal Provincialism

Our reader Robert, a.k.a. Whitewall, posted in the comment-thread to our previous post a link to an editorial piece from The New Criterion (by way of Instapundit; the original is here). It deserves promotion from comment to post. The piece, which is presumably by Roger Kimball, the editor of New Criterion, uses a beautiful phrase […]

Paul Gottfried on the “Alt Right”

Here are some trenchant remarks on the Alternative Right from Paul Gottfried, the man who coined the name. I have spent the evening with Professor Gottfried on a couple of occasions, and I can assure you that he is the farthest thing imaginable from the sort of neo-Nazi hothead that the mainstream media would have […]

Proof Of Concept

We’re still in Vienna; heading back to the States on Saturday. What a calm and orderly place this is! It may be otherwise in corners of the city we haven’t visited, but so far as I can tell Vienna, and the other little Austrian towns we’ve been to, are everything you’d imagine: polite, law-abiding, efficient, […]

Duh

Over the transom today from our reader Henry is this piece by Thomas Sowell. The points it makes are utterly simple and obvious — and utterly at odds not only with our prevailing social orthodoxy, but with the stated policies of the Obama administration, and even the recent jurisprudence of our Supreme Court. How long […]

The Siege of Istanbul

I’m off to Vienna later this week; it seems timely. After the Turks were driven back from the heart of Europe, progressive modernism gradually expanded its range. The Sublime Porte’s senescence deepened — the shrinking Ottoman Empire began to be known as “the sick man of Europe” — and finally the unthinkable happened: the last […]

Mr. Nice Guy

Yet another jihadi massacre in France last night. Eighty-four are dead as I write; the number will rise. What can I say that I haven’t said before? Not to worry, though — the Huffington Post has the answer:   Yup, we’ve got ’em right where we want ’em. Some prayers, a hashtag or two, lots […]

Science!

Some science items for today: With race front and center in every news cycle, it’s good to be prepared for encounters with those who insist that race is “only a social construct” (many of whom also spend all their waking hours totting up accounts of how one race is doing compared to another). Readers of […]

The Problem

Scott Adams (a keen observer whom you may know as the creator of Dilbert) offers an interesting explanation as to why the Democrat-Republican dispute over gun control is so intractable: On average, Democrats (that’s my team*) use guns for shooting the innocent. We call that crime. On average, Republicans use guns for sporting purposes and […]

Race, Violence, and the Police

Despite more than seven years of enlightened rule by a saintly mixed-race President, race relations in America seem worse than ever. Celebrities take to the national airwaves to blame “whiteness” for all the world’s ills, and in particular for all the frustrations, disappointments, and social afflictions of everyone who isn’t white. Moreover, if you were […]

The Stock In Each Man Is Small

“You see, Sir, that in this enlightened age I am bold enough to confess that we are generally men of untaught feelings: that, instead of casting away all our old prejudices, we cherish them to a very considerable degree; and, to take more shame to ourselves, we cherish them because they are prejudices; and the […]