Most commenters and bloggers in the white nationalist scene are like the Hobbits. They want to comprehend what’s happening to the West with a worldview that can be understood by homemakers. That’s why the single-cause hypothesis is so popular among them, even among German hobbits. The trouble with the monocausal hypothesis is that it makes the movement look silly. Yesterday for example, a monocausal hobbit stated on The Daily Stormer that there are signs that ISIS could have been spawned by the Mossad.
Don’t take me wrong. As in the novel, which by the way I read in the luxurious 50th anniversary edition, I believe that white nationalist Hobbits will play a pivotal role to destroy the One Ring.
However, unlike Tolkien’s characters, white nationalist hobbits don’t always want to take advice from the Gandalfs of our time—Sunic, O’Meara, MacDonald. Instead, they are becoming increasingly enchanted by the simplicities of the single-cause explanation for everything.
Like Bilbo Baggins, Hobbits should become humble with their intellectual superiors and see that the world beyond the Shire is a little more complex than their bucolic and simple life of farming, eating and socializing. That was my intention by compiling The Fair Race’s Darkest Hour, of which I reproduce below an abridged version of the piece “Liberalism” by Francis Parker Yockey that I chose for the book. But be warned: it’s too abstract for the housewife level!
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Why Rationalism follows one spiritual phase, why it exercises its brief sway, why it vanishes once more into religion—these questions are historical, thus irrational.
Liberalism is Rationalism in politics. It rejects the State as an organism, and can only see it as the result of a contract between individuals. The purpose of Life has nothing to do with States, for they have no independent existence. Thus the “happiness” of “the individual” becomes the purpose of Life. Bentham made this as coarse as it could be made in collectivizing it into “the greatest happiness of the greatest number.” If herding-animals could talk, they would use this slogan against the wolves. To most humans, who are the mere material of History, and not actors in it, “happiness” means economic well being.
All things in the political domain were transvalued by Liberalism. War was transformed into either competition, seen from the economic pole, or ideological difference, seen from ethical pole. Instead of the mystical rhythmical alternation of war and peace, it sees only the perpetual concurrence of competition or ideological contrast, which in no case becomes hostile or bloody.
Because Liberalism views most men as harmonious, or good, it follows that they should be allowed to do as they like. Since there is no higher unit to which all are tied, and whose super-personal life dominates the lives of the individuals, each field of human activity serves only itself—as long as it does not wish to become authoritative, and stays within the framework of “society.”
Twenty-first century readers will find it difficult to believe that once the idea prevailed that each person should be free to do as he pleased in economic matters, even if his personal activity involved the starvation of hundreds of thousands, the devastation of entire forest and mineral areas, and the stunting of the power of the organism; that it was quite permissible for such an individual to raise himself above the weakened public authority, and to dominate, by private means, the inmost thoughts of whole populations by his control of press, radio and mechanized drama.
They will find it more difficult yet to understand how such a person could go to the law to enforce his destructive will. Thus a usurer could, even in the middle of the 20th century, invoke successfully the assistance of the law in dispossessing any numbers of peasants and farmers. It is hard to imagine how any individual could injure the political organism more than by thus mobilizing the soil into dust, in the phrase of the great Freiherr von Stein.
But—this followed inevitably from the idea of the independence of economics and law from political authority. There is nothing higher, no State; it is only individuals against one another. It is but natural that the economically more astute individuals accumulate most of the mobile wealth into their hands. They do not however, if they are true Liberals, want authority with this wealth, for authority has two aspects: power, and responsibility. Individualism, psychologically speaking, is egoism. “Happiness” = selfishness. Rousseau, the grandfather of Liberalism, was a true individualist, and sent his five children to the foundling hospital.
Law, as a field of human thought and endeavor, has as much independence, and as much dependence as every other field. Within the organic framework, it is free to think and organize its material. But like other forms of thought, it can be enrolled in the service of outside ideas. Thus law, originally the means of codifying and maintaining the inner peace of the organism by keeping order and preventing private disputes from growing, was transmuted by Liberal thought into a means of keeping inner disorder, and allowing economically strong individuals to liquidate the weaker ones. This was called the “rule of law,” the “law-State,” “independence of the judiciary.” The idea of bringing in the law to make a given state of affairs sacrosanct was not original with Liberalism. Back in Hobbes’s day, other groups were trying it, but the incorruptible mind of Hobbes said with the most precise clarity that the rule of law rule means the rule of those who determine and administer the law, that the rule of a “higher order” is an empty phrase, and is only given content by the concrete rule of given men and groups over a lower order.
This was political thinking, which is directed to the distribution and movement of power. It is also politics to expose the hypocrisy, immorality and cynicism of the usurer who demands the rule of law, which means riches to him and poverty to millions of others, and all in the name of something higher, something with supra-human validity. When Authority resurges once more against the forces of Rationalism and Economics, it proceeds at once to show that the complex of transcendental ideals with which Liberalism equipped itself is as valid as the Legitimism of the era of Absolute Monarchy, and no more. The Monarchs were the strongest protagonists of Legitimism, the financiers of Liberalism.
But the monarch was tied to the organism with his whole existence, he was responsible organically even where he was not responsible in fact. Thus Louis XVI and Charles I. Countless other monarchs and absolute rulers have had to flee because of their symbolic responsibility. But the financier has only power, no responsibility, not even symbolic, for, as often as not, his name is not generally known. History, Destiny, organic continuity, Fame, all exert their powerful influence on an absolute political ruler, and in addition his position places him entirely outside the sphere of base corruptibility. The financier, however, is private, anonymous, purely economic, irresponsible. In nothing can he be altruistic; his very existence is the apotheosis of egoism. He does not think of History, of Fame, of the furtherance of the life of the organism, of Destiny, and furthermore he is eminently corruptible by base means, as his ruling desire is for money and ever more money.
In his contest against Authority the finance-Liberal evolved a theory that power corrupts men. It is, however, vast anonymous wealth which corrupts, since there are no superpersonal restraints on it, such as bring the true statesman completely into of the service of the political organism, and place him above corruption.
It was precisely in the fields of economics and law that the Liberal doctrine had the most destructive effects on the health of the Western Civilization. It did not matter much that esthetics became independent, for the only art-form in the West which still had a future, Western Music, paid no attention to theories and continued on its grand creative course to its end in Wagner and his epigones. Baudelaire is the great symbol l’art pour l’art: sickness as beauty. Baudelaire is thus Liberalism in literature, disease as a principle of Life, crisis as health, morbidity as soul-life, disintegration as purpose. Man as individualist, an atom without connections, the Liberal ideal of personality. It was in fields of action rather than of thought that the injury was the greatest.
Allowing the initiative in economic and technical matters to rest with individuals, subject to little political control, resulted in the creation of a group of individuals whose personal wills were more important than the collective destiny of the organism and the millions of the population. The law which served this state of affairs was completely divorced from morality and honor. To disintegrate the organism from the spiritual side, what morality was recognized was divorced from metaphysics and religion and related only to “society.” The criminal law reflected finance-Liberalism by punishing crimes of violence and passion, but not classifying such things as destroying national resources, throwing millions into want, or usury on a national scale.
The independence of the economic sphere was a tenet of faith with Liberalism. This was not subject to discussion. There was even evolved an abstraction named “economic man,” whose actions could be predicted as though economics were a vacuum. Economic gain was his sole motive, greed alone spurred him on. The technic of success was to concentrate on one’s own gain and ignore everything else. This “economic man” was however man in general to the Liberals. He was the unit of their world-picture. “Humanity” was the sum total of these economic grains of sand.
The type of mind which believes in the essential “goodness” of human nature attained to Liberalism. But there is another political anthropology, one which recognizes that man is disharmonious, problematical, dual, dangerous. This is the general wisdom of mankind, and is reflected by the number of guards, fences, safes, locks, jails and policemen. Every catastrophe, fire, earthquake, volcanic eruption, flood, evokes looting. Even a police strike in an American city was the signal for looting of the shops by the respectable and good human beings.
Thus this type of thought starts from facts. This is political thinking in general, as opposed to mere thinking about politics, rationalizing. Even the wave of Rationalism did not submerge this kind of thinking. Political thinkers differ greatly in creativeness and depth, but they agree that facts are normative. The very word theory has been brought into disrepute by intellectuals and Liberals who use it to describe their pet view of how they would like things to be. Originally theory was explanation of facts. To an intellectual who is adrift in politics, a theory is an aim; to a true politician his theory is a boundary.
A political theory seeks to find from history the limits of the politically possible. These limits cannot be found in the domain of Reason. The Age of Reason was born in bloodshed, and will pass out of vogue in more bloodshed. With its doctrine against war, politics, and violence, it presided over the greatest wars and revolutions in 5,000 years, and it ushered in the Age of Absolute Politics. With its gospel of the Brotherhood of Man, it carried on the largest-scale starvation, humiliation, torture and extermination in history against populations within the Western Civilization after the first two World Wars. By outlawing political thinking, and turning war into a moral-struggle instead of a power-struggle it flung the chivalry and honor of a millennium into the dust. The conclusion is compelling that Reason also became political when it entered politics, even though it used its own vocabulary. When Reason stripped territory from a conquered foe after a war, it called it “disannexation.” The document consolidating the new position was called a “Treaty,” even though it was dictated in the middle of a starvation-blockade. The defeated political enemy had to admit in the “Treaty” that he was “guilty” of the war, that he is morally unfit to have colonies, that his soldiers alone committed “war-crimes.” But no matter how heavy the moral disguise, how consistent the ideological vocabulary, it is only politics, and the Age of Absolute Politics reverts once again to the type of political thinking which starts from facts, recognizes power and the will-to-power of men and higher organisms as facts, and finds any attempt to describe politics in terms of morals as grotesque as it would be to describe chemistry in terms of theology.
There is a whole tradition of political thinking in the Western Culture, of which some of the leading representatives are Macchiavelli, Hobbes, Leibnitz, Bossuet, Fichte, de Maistre, Donoso Cortes, Hippolyte Taine, Hegel, Carlyle. While Herbert Spencer was describing history as the “progress” from military-feudal to commercial-industrial organization, Carlyle was showing to England the Prussian spirit of Ethical Socialism, whose inner superiority would exert on the whole Western Civilization in the coming Political Age an equally fundamental transformation as had Capitalism in the Economic Age. This was creative political thinking, but was unfortunately not understood, and the resulting ignorance allowed distorting influences to fling England into two senseless World Wars from which it emerged with almost everything lost.
Hegel posited a three-stage development of mankind from the natural community through the bourgeois community to the State. His State-theory is thoroughly organic, and his definition of the bourgeois is quite appropriate for the 20th century. To him the bourgeois is the man who does not wish to leave the sphere of internal political security, who sets himself up, with his sanctified private property, as an individual against the whole, who finds a substitute for his political nullity in the fruits of peace and possessions and perfect security in his enjoyment of them, who therefore wishes to dispense with courage and remain secure from the possibility of violent death. He described the true Liberal with these words.
The political thinkers mentioned do not enjoy popularity with the great masses of human beings. As long as things are going well, most people do not wish to hear talk of power-struggles, violence, wars, or theories relating to them. Thus in the 18th and 19th centuries was developed the attitude that political thinkers—and Macchiavelli was the prime victim—were wicked men, atavistic, bloodthirsty. The simple statement that wars would always continue was sufficient to put the speaker down as a person who wanted wars to continue. To draw attention to the vast, impersonal rhythm of war and peace showed a sick mind with moral deficiency and emotional taint. To describe facts was held to be wishing them and creating them. As late as the 20th century, anyone pointing out the political nullity of the “leagues of nations” was a prophet of despair. Rationalism is anti-historical; political thinking is applied history. In peace it is unpopular to mention war, in war it is unpopular to mention peace. The theory which becomes most quickly popular is one which praises existing things and the tendency they supposedly illustrate as obviously the best order and as preordained by all foregoing history. Thus Hegel was anathema to the intellectuals because of his State-orientation, which made him a “reactionary,” and also because he refused to join the revolutionary crowd.
Since most people wish to hear only soporific talk about politics, and not demanding calls to action, and since in democratic conditions it matters to political technics what most people wish to hear, democratic politicians evolved in the 19th century a whole dialectic of party-politics. The idea was to examine the field of action from a “disinterested” standpoint, moral, or economic, and to find that the opponent was immoral, unscientific, uneconomic—in fact—he was political. This was devilishness that must be combated. One’s own standpoint was entirely “non-political.” Politics was a word of reproach in the Economic Age. Curiously however, in certain situations, usually those involving foreign relations, “unpolitical” could also be a term of abuse, meaning the man so described lacked skill in negotiating. The party politician also had to feign unwillingness to accept office. Finally a demonstration of carefully arranged “popular will” broke down his reluctance, and he consented to “serve.” This was described as Macchiavellism, but obviously Macchiavelli was a political thinker, and not a camouflageur. A book by a party-politician does not read like The Prince, but praises the entire human race, except certain perverse people, the author’s opponents.
Actually Machiavelli’s book is defensive in tone, justifying politically the conduct of certain statesmen by giving examples drawn from foreign invasions of Italy. During Macchiavelli’s century, Italy was invaded at different times by Frenchmen, Germans, Spaniards and Turks. When the French Revolutionary Armies occupied Prussia, and coupled humanitarian sentiments of the Rights of Man with brutality and large-scale looting, Hegel and Fichte restored Machiavelli once again to respect as a thinker. He represented a means of defense against a foe armed with a humanitarian ideology. Machiavelli showed the actual role played by verbal sentiments in politics.
One can say that there are three possible attitudes toward human conduct, from the point of evaluating its motives: the sentimental, the realistic, and the cynical. The sentimental imputes a good motive to everybody, the cynical a bad motive, and the realistic simply seeks the facts. When a sentimentalist, e.g., a Liberal, enters politics, he becomes perforce a hypocrite. The ultimate exposure of this hypocrisy creates cynicism. Part of the spiritual sickness following the First World War was a wave of cynicism which arose from the transparent, revolting, and incredible hypocrisy of the little men who were presiding over affairs at that time. Macchiavelli had however an incorruptible intellect and did not write in a cynical spirit. He sought to portray the anatomy of politics with its peculiar problems and tensions, inner and outer. To the fantastic mental illness of Rationalism, hard facts are regrettable things, and to talk about them is to create them. A tiny politician of the Liberal type even sought to prevent talk about the Third World War, after the Second. Liberalism is, in one word, weakness. It wants every day to be a birthday, Life to be a long party. The inexorable movement of Time, Destiny, History, the cruelty of accomplishment, sternness, heroism, sacrifice, superpersonal ideas—these are the enemy.
Liberalism is an escape from hardness into softness, from masculinity into femininity, from History into herd-grazing, from reality into herbivorous dreams, from Destiny into Happiness. Nietzsche, in his last and greatest work, designated the 18th century as the century of feminism, and immediately mentioned Rousseau, the leader of the mass-escape from Reality. Feminism itself—what is it but a means of feminizing man? If it makes women man-like, it does so only by transforming man first into a creature whose only concern is with his personal economics and his relation to “society,” ie. a woman. “Society” is the element of woman, it is static and formal, its contests are purely personal, and are free from the possibility of heroism and violence. Conversation, not action; formality, not deeds. How different is the idea of rank used in connection with a social affair, from when it is applied on a battlefield! In the field, it is fate-laden; in the salon it is vain and pompous. A war is fought for control; social contests are inspired by feminine vanity and jealousy to show that one is “better” than someone else.
And yet what does Liberalism do ultimately to woman: it puts a uniform on her and calls her a “soldier.”’ This ridiculous performance but illustrates the eternal fact that History is masculine, that its stern demands cannot be evaded, that the fundamental realities cannot be renounced, even, by the most elaborate make-believe. Liberalistic tampering with sexual polarity only wreaks havoc on the souls of individuals, confusing and distorting them, but the man-woman and the woman-man it creates are both subject to the higher Destiny of History.
Yockey’s views on liberalism appear in Imperium (1962), 208-223.