Paleo-politics and Catholicism

The uniform view of the cultural Left—which includes everything that counts as mainstream from the standpoint of our bureaucracies of truth—is that nods by Republican leaders toward traditionalist cultural concerns prove that the GOP has been hijacked by fundamentalist wackos. That’s not rhetoric and spin, things really look to them that way. It’s clear from scholarly discussions and judicial opinions, for example, that the elite bar, a thoroughly mainstream part of our ruling class, is literally unable to conceive of a legitimate ground for publicly distinguishing homosexual couplings from any other sexual connection, including marriage.

The situation makes it impossible for any conservative cultural movement to make headway in public life, and in a bureaucratized and publicity-drenched age public life is everything. That’s why the cultural Right never gets anywhere. The “culture war” is an aspect of the politics of rationality, and the Right loses all the battles because the professional rationalizers are employed by the Left.

So what to do?

  • Clarify the rational grounds of traditionalist and antimodernist views, and push them in season and out of season. When basic points are at issue, there’s no substitute for fundamental thought, clarity and persistence. Make the fundamental irrationality of liberalism and the impossibility of being an intellectually fulfilled atheist evident to anyone with the slightest intellectual independence and interest.
  • Don’t accommodate, confront. A system of accommodation that goes beyond a temporary modus vivendi has to be based on a shared understanding of what’s reasonable, and that is specifically what is lacking with respect to liberalism and opposing views. To traditionalists, liberal rationality—the view that the moral and political world is composed of desires, resources and techniques—is defective to the point of fraudulence and inhumanity. Whatever liberals view as a reasonable accommodation will always involve surrender by traditionalists on basic points like value relativism. Never lose sight of that.
  • Theory is important, but it doesn’t hang in the air. Liberal theory is the flip side of the dominance of rationalized formal institutions like world markets and centralized and supposedly value-free bureaucracies throughout social life. To oppose such things we need to do everything possible to reduce bureaucratic domination of social life, particularly education and intellectual life. Debunk the experts, fire the bureaucrats, abolish formal education requirements, throw “education presidents” out of office, oppose everything imperial, and decentralize, decentralize, decentralize. And whenever relevant do what we can to encourage nonbureaucratic alternatives to market relations, such as traditional family and religious connections.

The foregoing amounts to paleoconservatism—a mixture of intellectualism, populism, traditionalism, libertarianism and localism. It seems to me that such views and Catholicism complement each other. Catholicism is I think most at home with a layered scheme of society that doesn’t centralize sovereignty and authority in a single place. To do so would create a this-worldly competitor to the Church as a transcendent universal principle of unity. And in the absence of a single this-worldly principle of unity and authority men need something else to look to to maintain social coherence. It’s hard to think of anything that could serve the purpose as well as a universal Church.

7 thoughts on “Paleo-politics and Catholicism”

  1. Elites and Bush
    This is one an example to support Mr. Kalb’s point about our elites. Some keep saying Bush has miscalculated by supporting amnesty and a Hispanic takeover of the U.S. There is no miscalculation by this elite: Bush is doing exactly what he has always indicated he wants to do, and he (like most of the elites) would rather have as President anyone (even Kerry) that did not endanger this idea. There is no other conclusion. There is not a shred of evidence to the contrary. Bush and the elites have made too many anti-American, anti-White statements and engaged in too many acts or omissions consistent with such statements for there to be any way to refute or even merely to call this proposition into doubt. Bush simply cannot see things any other way than the current liberal way. Bush is like the liberal apologists of communism and the Soviet Union; he apologizes and makes excuses whatever the Hispanics do. But the most critical similarity is he says and does nothing to oppose Hispanics whatever havoc they are wreaking. He won’t discuss it and describes anyone that wants to discuss it as “divisive.” P. Murgos.

    • Mr. Murgos has got the GOP’s number, all right! Damned straight
      Mr. Murgos, you’ve got it. You’ve got it exactly one hundred percent right—every single word you wrote. Conservatives (what I call the Normals, as opposed to the Degenerates, i.e., the left) have zip to gain from a Bush second term: Nada. Nichts. Rien. Absolute zero. Zero degrees Kelvin. Fuhgeddaboudit.

      We’re cooked either way. We know that: we’ve lost this election by a landslide before it’s even been held. But we’ll salve our burns and bind up our wounds, and live to fight another day.

      And we shall never give up this sacred fight. Never.

      Hear that, Country Club Republicans? You aren’t fooling anyone. And in the end, you’ll lose.

      • Agreed
        I agree with Mr. Murgos as well. Mr. Scrooby also nails it with his assertion that there is no substantive difference between Bush and Kerry. Either way we’re cooked. Bush with a supple, compliant Republican congress, or Kerry with a supple, compliant Republican congress. It’s a leftward march either way. Of course, if the Dems win congress as well, it’s a leftward sprint.

        So, the real question to my mind is: How are we to survive? Should we work to build up the Constitution Party so that it will grow at the local and state level? Though I realize it is a libertarian idea, what about the Free State Project? We also need to think in terms of ways to toss sand into the gears of the liberal machine. In any case, we’ve a long road ahead.

        • Who to Vote For?
          A critical thing to keep in mind is Bush and the elites would rather have Kerry as president than a conservative or anyone that proposes closing the borders. Bush and the RNC try to sow the fear of democrats in the hearts of conservatives and depend on the narrow-minded view that it is best to vote for the lesser of two evils. The lesser-of-two-evils premise goes something like this: voting for the man that will murder 9 people is better than voting for the man that will murder 10 people. This does nothing to stop murders four years from now, does not condemn murder, and does not represent a plan; it is desperation. Bush won’t mind losing a fraction of the amount that his lesser-of-two-evil voters will mind losing; recall Bob Dole, another right liberal, laughing it up on Saturday Night Live a few days or a week after a miserable showing in his election contest with Bill Clinton, an accused murderer and rapist and a prolific adulterer and liar.

          A plan consists in voting to ELIMINATE one murderer at a time. My main premise is conservatives have a far greater chance of retaking the Republican Party than the Democratic Party. Sub-premises are Bush is not a conservative (as we here understand the term) and a Bush presidency will almost certainly preclude a conservative takeover of the Republican Party for the next four years.

          Voting for a candidate that cannot win is not a plan but foolishness. There appears at this time, based on the polls, that there is no possibility the vote would cause Bush to learn anything. Working to start an alternative party is a great plan. This plan should not be confused with other plans such as voting to take over a major political party.

          Make no mistake; Kerry is pure trash. Just one example: he is an admitted war criminal. It is one thing to have done a terrible crime; it is another thing to have done it multiple times and then have the audacity to run for office on his crimes and pretend he speaks for people trying to be moral. Like his soul mate Ted Kennedy, he didn’t even try to pay for his crimes. His actions were not “merely” getting a girlfriend pregnant or snorting cocaine a few times. And Bush? I have said enough. P. Murgos.

          • Who to Vote For? Correction
            I don’t know why I included accused murderer in my description of Clinton. It was inadvertant. P. Murgos.

          • There’s little doubt in my mind Slick has had people bumped off.
            Mr. Murgos writes,

            “Correction: I don’t know why I included accused murderer in my description […].”

            I don’t know why anyone would leave it out. Technically speaking he hasn’t been accused formally in the legal sense—so maybe that’s what Mr. Murgos is correcting. But neither have the parents of Jon Benet Ramsay, for example. That which everyone knows or strongly suspects isn’t necessarily identical with what the law formally recognizes to be the case. Ask O. J. Simpson.

    • Bush and immigration
      I agree that it’s a good example of what’s going on. For Bush and American governing elites generally the dissolution through open borders etc. of America as anything other than a universalist ideology and legal order isn’t a policy supported by motives and analysis in any ordinary sense. It’s a metaphysical necessity, which means that if you object to it what you’re saying is nonsensical and best accounted for as ignorance, bigotry, psychological disorder and so on.

      Rem tene, verba sequentur.

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