Randoms of the day

Jim’s blog:

The difference between popular dictatorship and monarchy is illustrated by the difference between Botswana and Zimbawe. Mugabe, endorsed by the London School of Economics to rule Zimbabwe, had to allow and encourage one group to loot another, in order to maintain a base of support. Similarly, Ivy League Graduate Ouattara, sent to rule the Ivory Coast by the world bank, now presiding over the place as the Muslims that gave gave him his legitimacy run amuck.

When the colonialists left, most of Black Africa turned into hellholes, with the notable exception of Botswana, now 53 in world GDP, far above any other black African country. When Botswana became independent they elected the man born to be King, and the place remained in good shape so long as he lived. Till the day he died, it was the fastest growing economy in Africa. So long as he lived, the place had low and stable taxes, and the best economic and personal freedom in Africa – because he was elected on the basis of his royal birth, not elected on the basis of paying off one group with the lives and property of another group.

Auster is getting tied up in knots about German hyper-liberalism. What he really means is that Germany is the country most successfully conquered by the Harvard of 1945. He just can’t find the words to say it that way.

Nietzsche.

James Q. Wilson: "This book has two messages. First, religion reduces crime. Second, look what happens to scholars who say this is true."

I was emailed this article. It’s too bad that such an idea has no chance of happening

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32 Responses to Randoms of the day

  1. Red says:

    I’ve never read Nietzsche. I meet to many progressive morons who liked quoting him so I assumed he was another worthless writer like Marx. Any suggestions on which of his works I should start with?

    • robert61 says:

      Chapter 5 of Joshua Foa Dienstag’s book Pessimism is a fun thumbnail of Nietzsche (despite the not so optimistic title).

    • Foseti says:

      I’ve read a lot about Nietzsche but not a lot of Nietzsche. I plan to start changing that and I’ll keep you posted.

      • jult52 says:

        Nietzsche is a very talented writer. He states his positions concisely and with style, and he’s a bombthrower. So he’s worth reading directly and not through some summarized third-party source.

    • lolwat says:

      LOL, what fucking drugs are you on? Most leftists HATE Nietzsche. Look at the French Continental philosophers, they tore strips off him, and much of their work is as a response to Nietzsche.

  2. RS says:

    Beyond good and evil, english by kaufmann, then genealogie, english by kaufmann.

    it’s compuslively readable, and an adventure for your whole lifespan. more mind blowing than MM. i’ve probably read 6,000 pages of the stuff, counting the same ones over and over. you may never return in your heart to the anglosphere again!

    he’s very far right and helped create fascism (probably more than anyone else), yet was sharply anti-fascist in a number of ways. certainly has his faults. but really, hes the single greatest wellspring of late modernity, wildly creative, and no one wrote like him. a plurality consider him the greatest german prose writer. some say he wrote too well.

    according to aschheim’s monograph, he was early on received by leftists (and artists and very high-O people in general), to an 80% extent. he was absolutely anti-christian, that;s the main thing. he basically destroye dthe old right (in the non US-specific sense) and created the new right. kaufmann’s monograph is great, but more naive than aschheim’s monograph (on his reception not his thought).

    he also broke with wagner’s crude antisemitism (and francophobic christian-völkish-nationlism). probably because he feared jewish-gentile conflict and found wagner’s approach counterproductive… not because he didnt fear it. in fact i think it was on his mind a great deal. he tried to game the jews in this weird way, warm-cold-warm-cold. he would endlessly praise them as the superiors of germans and blast antisemites harder than anyone else, then in genealogie-1 he dealt the jews an amazing superblast of venom, which may well have helped create potent non-christianity-based antisemitism for the first time, for later use by the NS (who were antichristian at bottom, and promoted a heresy in which christ was a north european). apparantly he thought he would crack their minds and pour in his substantial charisma to draw them into his big plans for the future, and prevent things like their involvement in bolshevism (which had its roots in horrible earlier conflicts, that were ‘re-created’ and re-presented on a much smaller scale in the circa 1900 times**). I couldn;t tell you what in hell he was thinking. when people try to hot/cold/hot/cold me, i see it and i resent it. in many ways he was a bizarre and hysterical man, thanks to his illness, but also a driven and floridly creative one thanks to same.

    **basically the fact that jews were, as colonists, tending to take over europe, or parts thereof (in terms of steady population increase, disproportionate economic power, palling around with kings and counselors) by virtue of their superior IQ and C, so ukrainians and poles without other provocation known to me murdered about half of the ashkenazi population of europe (and not unlikely raped and tortured very many, and certainly robbed all) in the 1600s during the khmelnitsky uprising, second northern war, and russopolish war. my guess would be that nietzsche was well aware of these events. jews were major officials of the polish rule over ukraine, and that’s part of what got khmelnitsky hot; he announced that poles had delivered ukranians to jews as ‘slaves’.

    And that;s why we have, Nitrogen!

    Many many poles died in that time and poland bled out her existence qua great power, or for that matter power (and was partitioned not too many decades after by catherine the great, friedrich der große, and maria theresa, the controversially female successor to whatsisface, whom friedrich finally conceded was ‘a great man’). However, far more jews died as a % of their population, and the attack on them was totally intentional and self conscious.

    And that’s why we have, Nitrogen!

  3. RS says:

    Maybe you need a laugh after all that. severe blasphemy advisory, not-safe-for-work audio, soda up your nose advisory: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EM4hp9kz_A4

  4. RS says:

    Preston had ‘er going great, up through where I got distracted (as i always do).

    One mistake was calling N. a materialist, but that’s little-important.

    Important mistake was saying he was in favor of the passions, in contradistinction to distrusting them like Burke or the like. Not quite true: he really believed that in many cases, great discipline of and minute control over the passions and drives was needed (he was obsessed discipline, suffering, and the resulting virtue – virtue ethics). However, for him, to cauterize or deracinate the drives and passions is death. The passions are vitality itself. But indulging them wastes their virtue and ruins the individual’s taste, strength, and passions, so you might as well cauterize them as do that.

    (Passions means eros, familial love, romantic love, the drive to create art, the drive for military conquest, self-interest in general, the love/hate passion against the respected enemy and the hatred of the unrespected one, the drive for great friendship, fame, superior progeny, for greatness, for all kinds of achievement and acquired forms of strength and pride, for knowledge, wisdom, experience, talent, for the vision of the divine, for happiness, food and drink, maybe drugs, national power, civilizational achievement.)

    So, really, he emphatically did not traffic in stuff like Blake’s ” the road of excess leadeth unto the palace of wisdom”, which is basically nonsense, or the far worse “sooner murder an infant in its cradle than harbor unacted on desires”. (If it seems in gratuitously macabre taste, the baby is supposed to represent the ‘infant desire’ or ‘infant idea’.) What rot, but that Blake book, the Proverbs of Hell, is generally fantastic.

    Most of his vast criticism of the enlightenment, which preston mentions, was directed at/through Socrates rather than the englisghetment itself. But you never get flat BS from Nietzsche, the kind of flat BS Russel wrote about Nietsche himself in “history of wetstern philosphy’. N recognizes Socrates’ (and science’s) virtues for what they are. He always does that sort of thing. Maybe Russel can be forgiven, because he had to live through those two wars crafted in no little part by N.

    Romanticism vs the enlightment is a sighing girl in the nude vs mathematics. both are kind of cool…. but the winner and still champion of the two is pretty obvious for most people. One of the most important things about nietzche is how he assimiliates romanticism and, i think, transcends it in favor of something better, or at the very least comes up with a very very strong (and better) slant on it. classicism vs romance was an extremely important dialectic in germany because of goethe’s turn from romance, in his early and middle youth, to a mildly romantic classicism in his maturity. and you know, german culture was limited prior to goethe – there was bach and goethe early, they were some of the first german high-cult. there was luther – that;s not culture by my lights, rather anti-culture.

    And you see, goethe famously termed the romantic, ‘the sick’ in some very broad sense, and the classical the healthy. nietsche’s entire oreintation would be a pragmatic one, toward cultural flourishing through health spiced slightly with the ‘spes phthisica’ (tubercular febrile ingeniousness) of illness, and not so much toward truth as an end in itself. (this ‘health’ thing would become a really huge NS thing.) in other words he was a lot like william james, dewey, pierce in one way, only everything he thought and felt was totally different from anything familiar to them! though they are fun to pall around with in menand’s “metaphysical club”, ive never had much desire to read ’em very much.

    • RS says:

      > and you know, german culture was limited prior to goethe

      For instance Friedrich der Große, not particularly anti prussian or german outside of the cultureal spehere, disdained german culture up through his day and worshipped of course french culture and france. voltaire lived with him for awhile but they were both pushy charismatic big shots and the place wasn;t big enough for the two of em. and voltaire was ultimately a bit gauche at bottom, nietzshe decided from reading him over many a decade.

  5. robert61 says:

    Quite a row of comments, RS. Thanks for your thoughts.

    In re “a sighing girl in the nude vs mathematics”, I gather you’re coming out in favour of maths here.

    My brain agrees but my heart and loins demur.

  6. Allan says:

    The best voting system I have heard of
    would be one with weighted votes
    with the value of a vote directly proportional
    to the amount of income tax paid.

    Of course
    there still would be a lot of limousine liberals
    who would vote for leftists
    but the quality of elected representatives
    probably
    would be somewhat improved.

  7. Gian says:

    Is it not significant that N, died mad?

  8. dearieme says:

    As a crude approximation the the notion that you don’t get the vote until you are paying into the pot rather than drawing out, just put the age of the franchise up to 35. By 35 you should no longer be a net drawer-out from parents and taxpayers.

    • Handle says:

      I don’t think this would work in the US at all, a very large fraction of households headed by adults between 35 and 65 are not net taxpayers.

      Anyway, isn’t the “screwing over of posterity by placing upon them the liability to repay ruinous debts” the bigger problem? How should the voting system adjust to account for that? Who is to be Posterity’s Advocate?

    • robert61 says:

      You’d have to put a top limit on the franchise, too, in that case.

  9. dearieme says:

    P.S When I was young, all notion of a “property qualification” for voting had long gone, but there was still the remains of a (low) property qualification for jury service. Anyway, once jury service became near-universal, lawyers and judges became increasingly dismayed at hopeless jury decisions. Eventually England had to introduce majority verdicts: 10-2 is enough to convict nowadays.

  10. dearieme says:

    P.P.S. Scotland has always had majority verdicts: 8-7 will do. But it has much higher demands on corroboration of evidence than England, and the wonderfully realistic third verdict available to jurors.

  11. Handle says:

    Jim’s post reminds me of Africa Addio, which is … an experience. Worthwhile, but requiring a strong stomach.

  12. Albert Jackson says:

    I like Auster, but he is a bit out of his depth on European issues, and definitely does not understand in the least the U.S. role in the hyper-liberalization of the political culture here. I intended to draft him a long reply on both subjects, but instead contented myself with watching 50+ white children playing in the inner city park near my Vienna apartment, watched over my their white teachers.

    Auster can say Europe is “dead” all he wants, but I’d bet my last dollar that any random photo of the city park nearest to his apartment would paint a radically different picture than mine.

    There is NOTHING wrong with Europe de-Americanization would not solve in one generation.

    • Foseti says:

      “There is NOTHING wrong with Europe de-Americanization would not solve in one generation.”

      I think that’s probably true, though I’m increasingly less optimistic about most European countries’ ability to de-Americanize.

  13. Shawn says:

    How do I get my damned federal government job? Where’s my article? =) I’ve been waiting!

    • Foseti says:

      Actually one of the recent big pieces of legislation just changed the hiring process . . . so I’m trying to re-figure out the process.

  14. chucho says:

    That Nietzche essay was superb. Found this choice quote by Preston in another one of his pieces on alt right:

    “There is simply no way that an agglomeration of affluent liberal whites, underclass blacks and Hispanics, affirmative action-babies, feminists, gay militants, transsexuals, Third World immigrants, atheists, Muslims, hipster youth, traditional blue collar workers, state-connected labor unions, Jewish plutocrats, environmentalists, and the left-wing of the traditional WASP elite, with each of these attempting to get their pieces of the pie distributed by the managerial-therapeutic-multicultural-welfare state, can be politically durable on an indefinite basis.”

  15. icr says:

    “Auster is getting tied up in knots about German hyper-liberalism. What he really means is that Germany is the country most successfully conquered by the Harvard of 1945. He just can’t find the words to say it that way.”

    He can’t admit that Paul Gottfried and Moldbug are right after all the feuds he’s had with them.

  16. RS says:

    > LOL, what fucking drugs are you on? Most leftists HATE Nietzsche. Look at the French Continental philosophers, they tore strips off him, and much of their work is as a response to Nietzsche.

    You’re “fucking” mistaken, Sir or Madam. Nietzsche is a tremendous input for Derrida, though he may have said a little bit about his relationship to nazism (which is not terribly straightforward, but is indeed significant).

    Nietzsche was everywhere considered to be well- and saliently-linked to nazism, until he was largely rehabilitated in France and the Anglophone world. In Germany he is not nearly as rehabilitated.

    Before the war (I think it was), Horkheimer of the Frankfort School called Nietzsche a superior thinker over Marx! He was considered one of the two or three most important writers, by the entire Frankfort School. He was the primary ‘teacher’ of Foucault. You have no idea what you are on about.

    Whether any of their uses of Nietzsche can be called accurate, and in what sense and what degree, is a different question.

    • RS says:

      I don’t know, maybe I should qualify that. I only read a little of Derrida and Fou in my foolboy days of the age of 18 or 19. (Nor would I like to take them up again.) It depends whether you consider tearing at and responding to, to be ‘hating’. Fou used a ton of N, did he not, but I can’t say what his overall opinion of N was. I’d be surprised if he didn’t have at least some misgivings.

      N’s conclusions were pretty cleanly 180 degrees opposite of Schopenhauer’s, yet he recognized a giant debt to him, to the end, as his ‘great teacher’.

      My understanding is that no one else save Marx was used by the Frankfort boys more than Nietzsche – used selectively, needless to say. How much he was used by Lukacks or Gramsci I don’t know. But I have yet to deeply investigate Frankfort or any of this crap.

  17. RS says:

    > His madness could very well have been a result of syphilis, which melts your brain.

    You can find papers on his illness from recent years. The case against neurosyphilis appears potent. Most likely was a benign brain tumor dating from his schoolboy days. There’I have limited doubt that the ’88 books were influenced by direct psychological effects of the illness. There may have been a subtler sort of direct psychological effects in 86, 87, and before – but the endless torture of headaches and nausea definitely influenced his work, doubtless, from the 70s or before. And certainly in no unmixedly-good way. The headaches were sparser in his youth – later (I’m not sure by when), he would completely disabled on one day out of three.

    • RS says:

      > have limited doubt that the ’88 books were influenced by direct psychological effects of the illness.

      Neuropsychiatric, I mean. Organic, direct biological effects on brain function.

      • RS says:

        So yes, in a word his illness was ‘significant’, extremely significant.

        By the way, he began seeing vivid hallucinations with his eyes closed, and reported this to a lady acquaintance, possibly before finishing the first draft, or final draft, of Genealogie!!! I can’t remember when exactly this happened. The reason I’m “aghast” at this is that Genealogie is singificantly more important than the ’88 books, somewhat important thought the latter are. I would suggest that Genealogie (mainly Genealogie-1) is also markedly the most fatefully extremist, pro mass violence on civvies, pro ideological wars and bloody purgations, and proto-fascist book.

  18. RS says:

    > Quite a row of comments, RS. Thanks for your thoughts.

    My pleasure! I love N and his inheritors. I more and more think that it turned out to be a disaster in real life, thanks to its faults… yet still, there is endless value left in it.

    > In re “a sighing girl in the nude vs mathematics”, I gather you’re coming out in favour of maths here. My brain agrees but my heart and loins demur.

    Umm… I can’t tell how sarcastic you are being, or not! I (Mencken might disagree, at least in ’07) think N. slanted more toward romanticism, but with an enormous amount of hedges, qualifiers, and of thesis-antithesis-synthesis (which is not the same as ‘mere’ mediation or admixture). I would characterize my own ‘thought’ and ‘pathos’ (such as they are!) to be Romantic-postromantic in the same way.

    Russel charged him with being flatly romanticist, particularly Wagnerianly romantic – that he is romantic in general I think can be pretty cleanly rejected, but he probably is closer to Wagner’s romance than romance in general.

    By the way, I am currently reading Mencken’s 1907 monograph on Nietzsche. Pretty worthwhile – not always accurate in every single point, I would say. And, Mencken was 27 at that time and I see that he changed a number of his views and emphases later.

    And, I did finish up the Preston piece: great stuff.

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