Monday, December 09, 2013

the bad political fruit of the hon.bro.preznit's epic failures....,

vocativ | What is the Dark Enlightenment? As the term suggests, the Dark Enlightenment is an ideological analysis of modern democracy that harshly rejects the vision of the 18th century European Enlightenment—a period punctuated by the development of empirical science, the rise of humanist values and the first outburst of revolutionary democratic reform. In contrast, the Dark Enlightenment advocates an autocratic and neo-monarchical society. Its belief system is unapologetically reactionary, almost feudal.

The many bloggers who constitute the movement style themselves as “Dark Lords of the Sith,” self-described fearless truth-tellers, who—mixing their cinematic metaphors—offer Matrix-evocative “red pills” of awakening in the form of sulfurous conclusions about the state of the world. Indeed, questioning the prevailing Western narrative is typically a Dark Enlightenment writer’s modus operandi, skewering the values of the liberal establishment.

Where does the term Dark Enlightenment come from? Inspired by the pugnacious writings of Mencius Moldbug, the prolific blogger who serves as the movement’s unofficial center of gravity, the neologism is the creation of philosopher Nick Land. In 2012, Land wrote an impressively thorough manifesto titled simply The Dark Enlightenment, which boldly articulates the movement’s central thesis: “For the hardcore neo-reactionaries, democracy is not merely doomed, it is doom itself. Fleeing it approaches an ultimate imperative.” The essay continues, ”[Neo-reaction] conceives the dynamics of democratization as fundamentally degenerative: systematically consolidating and exacerbating private vices, resentments, and deficiencies until they reach the level of collective criminality and comprehensive social corruption.” No, this isn’t your grandpa’s conservatism. (Unless your grandpa was General Franco.)

As for Mr. Moldbug? Yes, he does exist, and no, that is not his real name. (That would be Curtis Yarvin.) You can find plenty of photos and video that document his many conference appearances. Mostly, though, Moldbug—who lives in the San Francisco area and works in the software industry—blogs and blogs and blogs.

What do they believe? Post-red pill awakening, liberal progressivism is seen as a state religion, an unquestioned humanist ideology that determines all outcomes and silences dissenters through dismissal. It’s a worldview generated and sustained by the mechanisms of the system itself. Moldbug has given that system the ecclesiastical label of the Cathedral. Seeing the Cathedral for what it is marks the first step to becoming darkly enlightened.

What is the Cathedral? According to Land and Moldbug, the Cathedral is a complex ideology network built atop the university system, the media (run and operated by graduates of the former) and employees of the bureaucracy, all of whom grow ever more dependent on the perpetuation of the Cathedral. The leveling mechanisms of democracy—with its race-to-the-bottom vote begging (buying) and illusions of social empowerment—remove any possibility of inventive political solutions, or, eventually, rational analysis. Inside the Cathedral, any questioning of democracy’s legitimacy is sacrilege. Before long, apostates will find penance by buying indulgences (like, say, Obamacare), whether they like it or not.


woodensplinter said...

CNu, do you consider these guys to be a genuine political threat, and beyond that, an existential threat to outgroups and minorities in the U.S.?

Second, do you believe that Anders Breivik is an extreme or forerunner representative of these views?

CNu said...

As threats to me and mine go, I consider elites wielding radiation to be the preeminent threat to the continuing existence of me and mine. Given the indiscriminate nature of radioactive death-dealing, I don't think these nerds get any kind of pass from dosing and dying. Barring what I'm now convinced this way comes, I DO consider these characters a severe long term threat because of what their survivors will transmit into the future.

They're young, ideologically blindered, and a minority of them are as capable of surviving the clampdown as I am. That makes them adversaries on the other end of the primary survival challenge tunnel.

Nakajima Kikka said...

I sense major, major sexual dysfunction as a key driver behind Dark Enlightenment ideology.

Nakajima Kikka said...

OK, here's the Cliff Notes version of Nick Land, the philosopher guru of DE:

His political outlook apparently rests on his philosophy of "Accelerationism"--here's a brief synopsis and critique:

Land is clearly become intellectually trapped by his own philosophy into espousing a bizarre political combination of national socialism and libertarian capitalism. I also sense, more strongly than before, that some kind of sexual dysfunction or inadequacy is also involved in all of this.

In Joshua Johnson's critique of Land, I thought his discussion on the possibility of art being the path out of the intellectual trap Land finds himself in intriguing (his description of the enraged Colin Powell demanding that Picasso's "Guernica" be covered up before his press conference on the Second Iraq War is compelling support for it). Completely independently, I've been moving towards a similar outlook; if resistance to this "Politics of Zero" is still possible, art will be its vector, not science/engineering/IT.

Nakajima Kikka said...

BTW, Land's claim (starting at 7:08) that women are "perfectly safe" in East Asia is ridiculous. Women, both foreign and native-born, are accosted a lot in East Asia. They certainly are in Japan.

CNu said...

lol, Creativity 2013

Thanks for posting that most illuminating synopsis. One had hopes of a fin d'siecle Julius Evola, only to be met with bush league George Lincoln Rockwell....,

Nakajima Kikka said...

More on Accelerationism, in a more readable style:

CNu said...

Ouspensky referred to these tendencies as "infrasexual".....,

Nakajima Kikka said...

I had to look this up to understand it. It seems to me that underdeveloped sexuality and abstinence are the most likely sexual dysfunctions DE adherents are struggling with. There's also a noticeable attraction to violence and cruelty, but I suspect it's more a symptom of the underlying underdevelopment, rather than a primary.

Philosophically, similar to Mussolini, Land is clearly coming out of the Marxist tradition, through he's taken it in a very different direction than Mussolini did, so we're not talking fascism here. While you ponder that for a moment, I also detect shades of Gramsci and maybe even the Italian Futurists. His screed against democracy is not particularly novel; others have made similar criticisms over the years, from both the Right and the Left. My sense is that, in a bizarre way, Land's turn to neo-reactionary politics is a consequence of philosophical despair at the spectre of post-modern capitalism laying waste to everything having any kind of meaning in human existence. I want to get a better handle on him, because his philosophy at least does need to be engaged and dealt with.

CNu said...

A New Model of the Universe Chapter 12 Sex and Evolution

There's Still A Civil War Bubbling For Control Of The Israeli Government

mondoweiss |    Any Palestinian following the developments in the Israeli protest movement against “the judicial coup” will require nerves...