In the third part of his “Open Letter to an Open Minded Progressive” Mencius Moldbug concluded his explanation of “the W-force” and progressive’s need for chaos.
Nelson Mandela’s life and legacy are an excellent way to examine both of these phenomenon.
The progressive explanation of history doesn’t make sense. For some reason, the political center continually, steadily, and predictably moves leftward.
(For my money, this is best explained in Moldbug’s series on Dawkins, in which Dawkins refers to the W-force as “the zeitgeist.” You’ve really got to admire Dawkins for admitting that he needs this fudge factor. On the other hand, you have to marvel at his obtuseness and generally lack of ability for self-criticism if he doesn’t think it’s funny that his explanation of the world which he’s describing in a book about how he’s not religious requires a mythical, inexplicable force that in his mind works constantly, and across time, for Good. For some reason I feel like there’s a name for such a force . . .)
Progressive history can’t account for this result. In brief, the W-force (W is for Whig) is a plug in the progressive historical equation that makes both sides balance.
Also in that third Open Letter post, Moldbug argued that the reactionary was both: 1) the polar opposite of the progressive; and 2) best defined as one who supports order. The difficulty with this description of the reactionary is that it logically follows that the progressive supports disorder, which doesn’t exactly square with the typical progressives I’ve known, who are generally quite mild-mannered. As he put it:
Rather, when you look at what progressives, Whigs, republicans, and other anti-reactionaries actually believe in – whether they are supporters of Obama, Lafayette, Herzen, or any other paladin of the people’s cause – it is rarely (although not never) the simple, nihilistic liquidation of the present order. It is always the construction of some new order, which is at least intended as an improvement on the present one.
However, in order to construct this new order, two things need to happen. One: the builders of the new order need to gain power. Two: they need to destroy the old order, which by its insistence on continuing to exist obstructs the birth of the new.
In the progressive mind, these indispensable tasks are not objectives. They are methods. They may even be conceived as unpleasant, if necessary, duties. . . .
So the progressive is, indeed, the polar opposite of the reactionary. Just as order and stability are essential to reaction, disorder and destruction are essential to progressivism.
Enter Mandela. (Moldbug’s thoughts are here, but need some fleshing out).
There are some things we must get out of the way. We’re reactionaries, after all, so we won’t just brush aside inconvenient bits of history.
What if I told you that the world’s most revered political leader was an adherent of the 20th Century’s most murderous ideology? What if I further told you that he founded and ran an organization that practiced what may well be the 21st Century’s most murderous political methodology? What if I further told you that even the supposed opponents of these movements don’t think it really matters? (Imagine the progressive saying that some revered leader was fascist, but he was just a little fascist, and really, given his circumstances . . .)
Mandela was a Communist and he was a terrorist. Yet to believe that these things disqualify him from greatness is to exist so far outside the present day mainstream as to be politically irrelevant.
How many things like this can one have been at least partly responsible for without disqualification from greatness? I would have said zero, but apparently I would have been way off. A few more such incidents are listed here. If you have a strong stomach, don’t miss the pictures! There’s more if you follow the links here.
Yet, at his death, we see all the leaders of the international community present and praising him. Indeed, the mainstream media are – in sometimes in cagey terms – not reluctant to praise South Africa in general, despite the genocide, rape and murder (follow the links).
If nothing else, you’ve got to have a pretty lame sense of humor not to laugh at the presence of all these world leaders in a country with a leader who thinks you can shower off the AIDS, is married to too many people to count, not-so-covertly supports genocide, occasionally gets a little rapey (maybe he’s not too rapey like Mandela wasn’t too much of a Communist), is openly corrupt, sues the press when they criticize him, hates the gays, wants to confiscate the children of teenage mothers(?!), thinks minority groups have “less rights,” and can’t think of anything bad to say about Mugabe. See you fuckers in Sochi!
Yet all that said, in some ways, the reactionary is the only who can really appreciate why Mandela was actually good. After all, we seem to be the only ones who *can* see the horror of progressive Africa.
When the international community decided that colonialism must end in Africa, they kicked off an orgy or murder, rape, and genocide. This violence was generally directed at Africans (white and black) who were members in minority tribes. The level of chaos is nearly impossible to overstate. The results were fairly obvious, but they were continually repeated over the course of decades and the “international community” never did anything to try to slow the horror.
Is there a better demonstration of the progressive need for chaos?
In this light, Mandela was a remarkable leader. Although it wasn’t possible to stop the bloodshed unleashed by the international community in South Africa, Mandela somehow managed to slow the process down by decades. Whereas everywhere else in Africa, the genocide, murder, rape and general descent into third-worldism were immediate, in South Africa, they’ve been remarkably gradual.
If that’s your bar what makes a good leader, let’s just say that your bar is set a lot lower than mine.