Another reactionary encounter

I met Buckethead yesterday, which brings the total number of reactionary meetings I have had to two.

Based on this statistically insignificant sample, I’m going to make some generalizations about reactionaries. Reactionaries:

– like to drink.
– read a lot.
– have changed their political beliefs multiple times (Devin came from the left, Buckethead from the right, and myself from the libertarian – this is an over-simplification, but not by much).
– work in high-tech fields – I am the exception here (however, I do have a degree in Electrical Engineering).
– are remarkably personable.
– can hold their booze (did I mention this already?).
– have at least one additional strange belief – once you accept that the mainstream methodology for determining what is true is broken, it’s hard to avoid adopting other heresies.

Finally, it seems that each one of us read all of Moldbug’s recommended primary sources on at least one topic. For example, I think I’ve read everything he’s linked to on the Civil War. From this I learned that modern mainstream history is full of holes and that historical knowledge about the war has actually declined dramatically during recent decades. Buckethead has done the same with respect to the American Revolution. Devin has done the same on lots of subjects – I confess that I cannot keep up with Devin or Moldbug.

In all, it’s been surprisingly fun to meet fellow Moldbuggians.

Our ranks seem to be swelling . . .

20 Responses to Another reactionary encounter

  1. I’m sure the rank swelling is due to unsanitary modern conditions.

    What is a reactionary? I’m gathering it’s a good thing by the odd mention, mostly from Colacho. But defining it seems tricky.

    Trying to find a label that fits these days is also tricky. That’s why I’m interested in what “reactionary” really means.

  2. Tschafer says:

    I’d say anti-egalitarian more than anti-democracy, Moldbug notwithstanding. I have nothing against a democracy, with a properly limited franchise…

  3. […] or Your Lying Eyes“, “Foseti’s Theory of Crime and Punishment“, “Another Reactionary Encounter“, “Who is […]

  4. Buckethead says:

    Based on my one meeting with another reactionary, I’d add that reactionaries are tall. Don’t know if that has any significance.

    I think that anti-egalitarianism and anti-democracy amount to mostly the same thing – and that thing might be the least common denominator of reaction. There are other bits that may or not be universal – look at Charlton’s orthodoxy, for example, which I doubt that Devin and Foseti share.

    It’s a starting point, though, and once you’re there, other things start to look dubious.

  5. Don Colacho’s definition:

    To be a reactionary is to understand that man is a problem without a human solution.

  6. Johann the Angry says:

    What are Moldbug’s recommended primary sources?

  7. kurt9 says:

    There is a tea party activist who discussed about how the franchise was initially limited to property owners. One suggestion is to limit the franchise to those who file “Schedule C” with there 1040’s. Another is to limit it to those who are net tax payers rather than tax receivers, although I’m not sure how this could be measured.

    Jerry Pournelle has a variant of this theme in his “Co-Dominion” novels. In his future America, there are civilians and there are tax payers. The civilians are those who are “dependent” on the system. The civilians have all of the same rights as tax payers EXCEPT that they are required to live in certain areas of cities. They are given opportunities to get educated, learn trades, etc, so that they can uplift themselves to the status as tax payers. Most of them choose not to do this.

  8. Jehu says:

    Most consider me to be pretty reactionary. My take is that reactionaries do not view anti-discrimination as the greatest moral good, nor discrimination as the greatest moral evil. The fire in my gut is about demographic hegemony, so I’m an unreconstructed, unrepentant racist by today’s estimation (along with nearly everyone who existed before about 1960).

  9. I like Colacho’s definition (of serial aphorisms) best. Moldbug’s I can get behind as long as we prefix “order” with the implied “enlightened in the formalist sense”.

    I also found a quote by Clay Shirky worth pondering, in his discussion of Wikileaks:

    “On the other hand, human systems can’t stand pure transparency. For negotiation to work, people’s stated positions have to change, but change is seen, almost universally, as weakness. People trying to come to consensus must be able to privately voice opinions they would publicly abjure, and may later abandon. “

  10. kurt9 says:

    I take it “reactionary” means you want to make the U.S. into a giant version of Singapore. Talking about non-democratic systems, Singapore is the perfect embodiment of everything you guys believe in. It is a functional society that is under non-democratic leadership. If you are to have any monarch or autocrat, Lee Kuan Yew, is the best example of any I can think of.

    So, how do you “reactionaries” propose we find our version of Lee Kuan Yew.

  11. B Lode says:

    I think I fit the general picture reasonably well. I definitely have odd beliefs and practices – I take a ten-minute ice bath each night before bed; I buy all my CDs based on reviews and have no musical tastes in common with anyone I know; I believe most depression is caused by helplessness learned in institutional schools around puberty; I don’t have a television. I don’t drink and I am only sporadically sociable. I read but I am very bad about finishing novels unless they’re very short or written by Larry McMurtry. I don’t work in high tech but I was on the web before most people.

  12. Genius says:

    – I like to drink, but had to cut back drastically for health reasons. Now it’s a couple drinks a month.
    – I read a lot and also collect rare books.
    – I’ve changed my political beliefs many times and involved myself with a lot of different political movements – conservative, libertarian, Zionist (in America), anti-disengagement (in Israel), and finally reactionary.
    – I work in the internet industry.
    – I was not very personable in my libertarian days and I’m still sort of curmudgeonly, but I’m far more pleasant and friendly as a reactionary.
    – I had a ridiculously high tolerance for alcohol when I drank every day. Now I can’t really feel one drink, but I definitely can feel two.
    – I have many additional strange beliefs – medical, religious, historical, etc.
    – I don’t think there’s any subject for which I’ve read the complete Moldbug library of recommended texts.
    – I am not tall. I’m just about average for Israeli men, but on the short end of the average range for American men.

  13. […] Foseti mentioned, we had a little reactionary gabfest on Friday. Along with his observations, I’d add that […]

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