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The Paradox of Degenerate Nationalism
When liberalism assimilates with nationalist values
This article was originally published at Arktos.com on 9-21-2023, and can be found at:
In white nationalist circles, the basis of their arguments relies on the notion that humans are different, that humans love their own people, and that humans should suggest telling others to divide themselves. But honestly, why would this be a righteous mode of action, or let alone something common people would go out and do? This is equivalent to the idea that we have “original sin,” and we must cleanse ourselves from sin in order to be saved. There is something wrong with us, unless we become religious crusaders, guilt-ridden about ourselves.
There is something to consider about the flaws of racial awareness, when we limit ourselves to semantics and syntax around a fragile and subjective truth about reality.
Carl Schmitt argued in his 1932 work The Concept of the Political that there is a “friend-enemy” distinction at the root of all politics. As a criticism, liberalism itself seems to negate politics as a whole because it relies on the selfishness of the individual to make these subjective binaries of in-group or out-group semantics. Human diversity is about having conflicts with one another. Trying to get rid of the friend-enemy distinction would lead to the erasure of the human spirit as a whole.
In comparison to political friendship, Max Weber argued in his 1905 work The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism that power didn’t just come from a top-down elite control, but power was understood through culture and the set of the ideas that made economics and politics possible. There was a transition from the old European monarchy and aristocracy to the present managerial state through the cultural proliferation of liberalism.
According to Weber, in the old world, “traditional authority’“ relied on folklore and the supernatural to justify the power of the elites. Soon after, when Europe lost its interest in religion, a “charismatic authority” came about, or a Bonapartist state, where one charismatic leader rises and changes everything through his own passion and will. Finally, we live under the current political state, “bureaucratic authority,” where bureaucracy achieves its power through knowledge. Only the bureaucrats know how the system works and the outsider is left to figure it out on his own.1 It’s important the people don’t figure out how the elite operates, as the point is to withhold information and secrets from everyone else. The only remedy is to understand how “power-knowledge” works and wield it for good or for bad. Ideas and knowledge thus become the divide of Schmitt’s friend-enemy distinction. This, in turn, would mean that capitalism as an economic system wouldn’t work in Africa or India, simply because the values to create capitalism are too Eurocentric and not of interest to African or Indian people.
However, it is unfortunate that the far-right has become a type of bureaucratic authority, where the anti-liberal subcultures insist they have power-knowledge against the liberal state, such as “race is real,” “race-mixing is bad,” and “Jews are the only evil race.” This would mean that the far-right would be against retards and those who have handicaps, as the slightest degree of disability means “dysgenic.” In part, this bureaucratic far-right wants a “degenerate nationalism,”2 where only the far-right of monoculture races can practice any degeneracy and liberalism they want, so long as they belong in their own nations. It is itself a type of “go to your room” type of nationalism or a cocky “good fences make good neighbors” carelessness. This, I believe, is an issue within far-right circles, and we have to criticize the concept of deep ecology, human biodiversity, and “ethnonationalism” as a whole to move past this “separate but equal” and “diversity without us” paradigm.
The German intellectual Ernst Jünger once wrote about his garden that “my garden gives me more certainty than any philosophical system.” Jünger, who wrote books on politics and philosophy, escapes to his organic garden as a hobby. What is constructed in intellectualism is like a garden one takes care of. Jünger himself becomes the “gentle giant” who cares for all outcomes of society (or for that matter, the “society” of the garden he is caring for).
The “gentle giant complex” is a phenomenon among white people. The complex states that all white people, no matter the political or philosophical intentions, are naturally wooed to protect and provide for “humanity” as a whole, even if it’s supporting and taking care of non-white people, animals, or pulling the gun on themselves. The complex relies on the concept of deep ecology, which postulates that the inherent worth of all living beings is just as important as humans and that humans should act as caretakers to create a harmonious, co-existing society. It is quite ironic that deep ecology was developed by Arne Næss, an activist who found sympathy with French postmodern philosopher Félix Guattari. Together, they conceived of the term “Ecosophy,” a system of debates and semantics around ecological harmony and co-existence. It means that the root of deep ecology relies on a left-wing attitude of protecting the world, in the disguise of a “right-wing” preservation of private property, “human biodiversity,” and race realism.
However, the gentle giant complex can be problematic in many ways. Being a caretaker, and limiting oneself to certain goals to achieve success for humanity, is a new form of Christian self-guilt, as humans are never good enough for society. The gentle giant complex is also condescending, assuming there is a correct way to protect the earth, and such axiomatic truths, like “race is real,” cannot be refuted, like liberalism arguing its polar opposite, “race is not real!” This assumes that people shouldn’t “race mix,” or assimilate into different societies that limit them. Of course, African society would find European society a luxurious lifestyle, as this becomes an objective truth rather than a subjective whim to enjoy a “culture.” There is also the issue that the managerial equity state is the only economic reality, revising James Burnham’s “managerial elite” to a transhumanist extent. This leads to a whites-only retirement plan of “degenerate nationalism,”2 where “nationalism” becomes an exclusive club for white people that can celebrate cultural values of far-left hedonism because white people are thus responsible for any ideas of progress, transhumanism, and liberalism that break away from the limits of nature. To the degenerate nationalist, “culture is not the same thing as biology,” yet ironically, the segregation of white people as a managerial equity elite against the world is a selfish and psychoanalytical shallowness that prefers interests, art, culture, and ideas simply because the person has a certain skin color. It is thus hypocritical to its own intention of deep ecology.
This self-guilt language supersedes race as well. While degenerate nationalists assume race is real and only what they call “white” is good, the same also believe that there are “fetishes,” an irrational fixation, or desire, upon a subject. Of course, liking one’s own race to the extent there are “Aryan women in wheat fields” isn’t a “fetish” to them. It is only when a white man falls for a woman of a different race, and has an open preference for her, it is a “fetish.” The gentle giant complex assumes they know right, and, like a nagging parent, they become condescending against the man who is sincere with his convictions. And exactly like in liberalism, just like how the liberal assumes people should use pronouns or become race-blind, liberalism is inseparable from the nature of admixture European people.
As stated by evolutionary psychologist Kevin MacDonald in his 2019 work Individualism and the Western Liberal Tradition: Evolutionary Origins, History, and Prospects for the Future, high-trust societies, egalitarianism, equity, equality, and a “transhumanist” ethos to go beyond the stars are biological traits, if not a genetic reality of white European-descended people. Therefore, liberalism cannot be divided from an entire race, and fighting against “Black Lives Matter,” trans flags, drug abuse, immigration, race-mixing, and homosexuality is a futile attempt at fighting one’s own white self, as white people and culture made these liberal freedoms possible. “Home” is an abstraction, not a real place. And the same could be said about the subjective ideas of being “white.” It really just boils down to a market reality, rather than any praxis of geopolitics. What is a “nation” ends up being libertarian or a preferred consumer subculture rather than an organic culture.
Two important writers, Rudyard Kipling and Joseph Conrad, contemplated this “white” reality as an error for the West. Kipling wrote in his 1899 poem “The White Man’s Burden” that white people cannot sustain their own civilization while taking care of other non-whites in their developing managerial equity state. The question arises if white civilization as a whole is doomed to the gentle giant complex of taking care of a garden without purpose, as their entire identity. Joseph Conrad, also in 1899, published his novel Heart of Darkness, with similar conclusions. The infamous Conradian line, “The horror! The horror!,” is a reaction to the pointless attempt of white people trying to change Africa and African people to their own liking. Both Kipling and Conrad knew there was a limit to white imperialism. However, white imperialism did not stop there, as it continues today with global capitalism, the propaganda of rainbow flags, and the worldwide liberalism it wishes to educate non-whites with. I believe these are traits found among white people, and white nationalists are merely trying to protect themselves from it, or espouse degenerate nationalism as a solution.
In ecology, “r/K selection theory” states that “R”-minded animals have lots of children but cannot uphold society, while “K” minded animals have few children yet uphold high society, complex skills, and virtue. A deep ecologist must accept the fate of both the R and the K animals. However, this would also mean that the R animals would naturally kick out and kill off the K animals that take too long to make life investments. In this situation for humans, Africans and Muslims are known for having lots of children, and, at the expense of European society, they will move to Europe because of its higher quality of life. European people can only take care of them, like their own children in K strategy, and watch them destroy their own homes.
There is an argument that the gentle-giant complex is motivated by “pathological altruism,” where the trait of altruism comes from either Christian culture or the biological reality (or gene) of high-trust society found in European people. But hardly anyone in the far-right brings up the concocted and elitist ideas of Thomas Malthus. Malthus argued in his 1798 essay “On The Principle of Population” that humanity will reach a limit to its population growth, and the elites must, in some way or another, degrow the economy, so no war will happen, or the world’s resources will ultimately be depleted.
Many on the political right spectrum, from Elon Musk to Peter Thiel, engage in a “Malthusian” economic influence of regrowth, by advocating the pseudo-right-wing values of “conservatism,” libertarianism, and private property projection. When deep ecology argues for coexistence and peace, these pseudo-right-wing values co-opt deep ecology with a simpleton conclusion: “Just go to your own room and ignore everyone else.” The libertarian idea of “the non-aggression pact” suggests we have a moral obligation not to fight with others, and forcefully isolate ourselves from the world. The best criticism of “ethno-nationalism” relies on the fact that it needs a libertarian foundation, and pathological altruism, in order to operate. Merely stating that “race is real” is not enough to solve an economic crisis or political problem.
There are some on the far-right who believe that if you get rid of Jewish people from economic positions of power, capitalism will naturally heal itself, negating all responsibility brought upon white people, because “white people are innocent victims!” To me, this is a poor excuse to read about political economy and to assume that the work of Martin Heidegger is centered on one’s own philosophy, without ever addressing critics and expansions to the core thought.
In 1945, philosopher Karl Popper addressed his own “paradox of tolerance.” In this paradox, if a society is tolerant without limits, its value of being tolerant will be destroyed by those who are intolerant, who, ironically, were accepted by the tolerant. Within degenerate nationalism, who is considered “white” is subjective, and those who are dubbed “white” will end up changing definitions, or annihilating the degenerate nationalists and their party of whiteness, when they are accepted as one of them. The same could be said about ethno-nationalists, who upload the notion that finding one’s own place is a moral pursuit, and yet when there is a biracial or multicultural race of people that open their doors to anyone, in pursuit of “you belong here,” ethno-nationalists end up advocating its political opposition. This means that libertarianism can only kill itself, as it’s not based on any praxis of community-building or greater geopolitical interest for humanity.
The degenerate nationalist wants it both ways, “I want to be a gentle giant and care for everyone, but I want my garden clean with my people in it.” This itself is the paradox of deep ecology.
The concept of “anti-nationalism” is biased, and assumes that only cosmopolitanism or multiculturalism are the answers. It is equivalent to the contradiction of being “anti-human,” as nations are natural borders, lines, and spaces carved out by other humans. To assume any line drawing is somehow evil disrespects biology as a whole. Likely this anti-force is coming from the word “nationalist” itself, which holds a post-war ideology of discomfort. The same could be said about the feminist attack on the word “patriarchy,” which is associated with sexism, even though the nature of the “patriarchy” in animal tribes is completely normal and healthy. We can be critics of nationalism, but that doesn’t mean we are supposed to be “anti-nationalists.” What is apparent is that the word “nationalism” has become the core idea and semantic to explain the separation and liberal isolation of all alien opposition. Personally, I don’t think nationalism is the correct answer for deep ecology, the gentle giant complex, the friend-enemy distinction, or any acknowledgment that biology is somehow more of a priority than economics or politics.
I believe that Max Weber’s concept of bureaucratic authority, or of power knowledge, seems to be the fault of anti-liberal projects. Just because someone does not know the ingroup signs and semantics to be a part of something, such as “nationalism,” does not defeat them or advocate its opposition. Rather, deep ecology is at fault, and anti-liberalism, including the far-right, must become critical of deep ecology and its conclusions. If it means some kind of condescending liberal acknowledgment that “nature is real,” what’s the point of politics or philosophy if we are limited by natural laws? If information is being withheld from us because we are not in that “Trotskyist” sect of degenerate nationalism, that is just another distracting subculture, made by, in part, the elites that want to divide and conquer anti-liberal opposition.
We have to criticize the foundations of difference and division. If there is an evolution of the far-right, it shall become a “right without rules.” Or try to imagine a left wing against itself.