GABlog Generative Anthropology in the Public Sphere

July 2, 2016

Little Big Men

Filed under: GA — adam @ 7:20 am

It’s convenient and accurate enough to speak about the civilizational war in the West in terms of nationalism vs. globalism/imperialism or alt-right vs. SJW. A more comprehensive approach, though, would explain it as a crisis of the producerist/consumerist split which goes back to the (pre)historical emergence of the Big Man. The “globalists,” the “managerial class,” the “political class,” the “ruling class,” the “transnational elites”—whatever you want to call all those aligned by their sharing interests and therefore outlooks across national boundaries—want nothing more than to create a global subject class defined solely in terms of consumption. You get educated in order to get a job in order to spend your life as a consumer and define yourself in terms of your consumption choices. There’s nothing morally or ethically objectionable about such a life—many people are suited for it and are quite happy living it, assuming their income is sufficient to support it. To force everyone into it, though, requires quite a bit of violence and lying—moreover, not everyone who buys into it has read the fine print, and there might be quite a bit of buyer’s remorse. The symmetry of all on the margins in relation to a single center eliminates a lot of smaller resentments, against smaller and overlapping centers, only to concentrate them all into one totalizing one: the all against one (and one against all) of tyranny. Judaism and then Christianity, realizing that the desire for centrality was not eliminated through the actual seizure of the center but, rather, that everyone on the margin would now define himself in terms of that desire for centrality, posited a King behind the king to whom any terrestrial king was ultimately accountable. Kings suffer, are defeated and overthrown, sin and are punished, die—like everyone else; and that “critique” of monarchy is actually the way “everyone else” comes to be defined, or anthropomorphized. The brilliance of the modern imperative is to off-load the center onto impersonal systems, like democracy, the market, science and technology, in order to remove the bullseye while centralizing beyond the dreams of any ancient pharaoh—the bureaucrats, executives, managers and public servants all act in the name, first, of some transcendent principle, and, then, some self-referential procedure, not their own concentration of power. But this strength has turned into a weakness because someone has to take responsibility, and all we have now are “experts” who are expert mostly in deflecting responsibility onto someone else. You could explain the entire Obama administration pretty well by simply imagining them doing little more than, after something happens, asking themselves how can we make the Republicans, Fox News and talk radio responsible for this. It’s trolling and baiting all the way down. The victimary, the SJWs, are just a virus released by the final breakdown of all pre-modern immunological systems—it has taken a long time to extricate the natural sense of responsibility. In what is a confirmation and slight modification of Arendt’s theory of totalitarianism, the consumerist bureaucracy itself just becomes another horde of ravenous consumers.

Producer’s desire begins in the realization that the world is your construct—you can complain about the “media,” or “ideology,” or whatever (complaint and outrage are just consumerist twitches—the world didn’t serve up what you were promised, and you want some Consumer Protection Agency in the sky to get you a refund)—but what you pay attention to is up to you. You can look at your responses to the bait laid around you, and instead, say, of getting outraged at someone else’s evil, you can see that they are acting purposefully in some way that has been effective in the past for the sake of some stake they are protecting; you can, then, assess your own behavior, and the role it has perhaps played in rendering action you now see to be harmful effective. And then you can act more purposefully, in particular by modeling and encouraging others to train themselves in the discipline you have formed. You can look calmly at the “sh*t tests” (a very illuminating term I have learned from the androsphere) the SJWs put you to, and realize that they really just want someone to draw a line and stick to it. (Is it possible that the SJWs are really shocked that so many take their BS so seriously?) By now we’d have to be really gullible to think that anyone considers allowing transgenders to serve openly in the military (with the costs of the “gender reassignment” therapy and surgery covered by Uncle Sam) to be a “human rights” issue. Those whom the alt-right call “cuckservatives” take such bait and with Pavovlian predictability go on to write think pieces about how, while of course the army has to maintain discipline and we have to make sure it is not politicized what is most important is that the bigots on “our” side must be disavowed. Surely conservatives will soon get the idea that the Democrats are the real transphobes, the Republicans the true protectors of the trans. They fail the sh*t test. Look at the final paragraph of an essay by David French in National Review that otherwise says some good things about this latest sh*t test:

Fortunately the warrior culture is resilient. Infantry platoons aren’t likely to go full PC anytime soon, but the Left keeps chipping away. It will keep chipping away until the horrible reality of the battlefield reminds us all that our military isn’t a social laboratory. Our enemies focus on war while we sidetrack our soldiers with social justice. Not even our immense technical and material advantage can save us forever from the consequences of our own folly.

Implicit here is some narrative of “us” waking up, “snapping out it,” and realizing that “we” have been foolish. Although “we” probably won’t until we lose a war or two. But why would that “remind” us of anything? French imagines some essential American identity—rather than a war, there is a confused “we” (it’s like describing World War II—and of course we do see such descriptions all the time—as some Western “we” considering but finally eschewing suicide). If those infantry platoons can hold out a bit longer, we’re all sure to realize that and get “our” head straight. Constructing and expressing faith in these imagined “we’s” is the quintessential consumerist posture—one waits, Godot-like, for the margins to align symmetrically before a vanishing center. But if, as French says (spotting the obvious right away), these new rules are about social engineering rather than military readiness, then those issuing the rules are derelict in their primary responsibility. They are saboteurs. (It’s an easy call—“social justice” is intrinsically sabotage of any institution in which it is advanced.) The duty of every commander is to immediately jail and then dishonorably discharge any soldier who murmurs a word questioning his gender and thereby disrupts discipline. If he is not permitted, he can only continue to be a commander if he resigns, and informs all those infantry platoons that it is their duty to do so as well. The preservation of something like a “military” then requires the announcement of the formation of a people’s militia, preparing for war against the saboteurs, with an invitation to all those soldiers to volunteer. (I originally thought to say “traitor” instead of “saboteur,” but “traitor” presupposes the very community that doesn’t exist—a saboteur is not a traitor from his standpoint, and we learn more from studying that standpoint than bewailing the betrayal.) Clearly all this would be unthinkable for French—but what, exactly, is wrong with the argument? Once you, as a consumer, realize you have been suckered, you can either up your dosage of snake oil (we need to return to the true principle of equality, or implement it sincerely for the first time), or you discover a discipline—a mission, a vocation, a cause, a calling, if you like, and then you’ll realize that those principles oddly seem to have no other purpose than to get in your way.

The commanders and soldiers who acted in this way would be enacting producer’s desire—they would all be Big Men, albeit little big men as there would be a lot of them. Rather than trying to conform to commands issued from the existing center, they would be imagining and constructing new centers, giving shape to their vocation as soldiers and defenders of the people. That is what it means to be a “producer”—to disregard threats, blandishments, attempts at shaming, side issues and chumming, in order to pursue your discipline. If you read the consumerists, you can see that underlying their discourse always is the imperative to stay in line, make sure you keep getting fed, fear social disapproval, defer to those with greater credentials than yours. The most courageous among them figure out ways to become troublesome enough so that someone else will consider it cost-effective to appease them—it’s not such a hard scam to run on people who, more than anything else, want no trouble. If you read the producerists, you see a contempt for social approval, ridicule of credentials, defiance of The Narrative, an eagerness to take what they are told not to think as a cue to what they should think about, and an overwhelming desire to stay independent of the institutions (by now, almost all of them) infested by the SJWs. For the first time in the history of civilization, the role of the Big Man or Alpha (desperately suppressed by monotheism and metaphysics until this day) can be openly broached. And that’s what the war of Western civilization is really all about.

Perhaps one could say that I’m just complaining here—even worse, I’m complaining about people complaining. I don’t think so because I don’t expect anyone to do anything other than what they want to do. I don’t really want anyone to do anything other than what they want to do. I don’t accuse anyone of not conforming to some ethical or moral model that I imagine has been inscribed somewhere. I prefer the logic of compensation to moral indoctrination—if there are some who want to rape, loot and murder, there will have to be enough who want to deter, confront and neutralize the rapists, looters and murderers—and there will have to be enough who want to have enough people who want to do that. And those who want those things will do so because they want other things as well. Then we’d all have to figure out how to get what we want, rather than expressing outrage when the world we want doesn’t magically materialize from our own good intentions. I would just have people consider whether they want to study the origins of their wants more systematically, because I think they will conclude that the more their wants entail delegating responsibility to others for the satisfaction of those wants the less what they get will turn out to be what they really want. And to consider that if you are among those who want to discipline your wanting you will want to have as little as possible to do with those who don’t.

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