I was reading an article by that highly intellectual critic of the social order we live under, Curtis Yarvin. If you are unfamiliar with his writing, Yarvin’s analysis of the oligarchic nature of the American power structure is in many ways observably correct. And although his writing style and his elitist perspective are sometimes maddening, his ideas are very often illuminating.
In this case he was writing about Elon Musk’s offer to buy Twitter and bring it private. The gist of the argument was that because, potentially, Musk could completely control Twitter’s policies and actions toward the public it was a rare chance for a pure strategic victory against the Left.
And to contrast it with a tactical victory that eventually led to a strategic defeat he relates the decades long struggle against crime in New York City. The familiar story relates that under decades long liberal rule New York grew more and more crime-infested until by the late 1980s there were over 2,000 murders a year and the whole city was besieged by petty and serious crime. People were leaving the city by the hundreds of thousands and public confidence had evaporated. This set the stage for a law-and-order Republican, Rudy Giuliani, to win the mayor’s office on the strength of a promise to restore law and order through stringent policing methods.
And it worked. For more than twenty years Giuliani and Bloomberg who came after him, were able to maintain New York City at low levels of crime. Levels that hadn’t been seen previously even in less chaotic times. New York became a livable big city and thrived financially and culturally. But what had not changed was that the majority of New Yorkers were still progressives who deep down in their souls resented the fact that this criminal justice system ended up incarcerating mostly black criminals. Since their logic told them that somehow this wasn’t fair, they were never happy with the system even if it saved them from a tidal wave of crime.
So, after they became complacent about crime and when the George Floyd moment came New Yorkers were glad to have the excuse to abandon effective policing. And the rest was inevitable. Now the city is more dangerous than ever and trying to get back to where they were a few years ago seems politically impossible.
Yarvin’s point was that the tactical victory by Rudy Giuliani allowed for the strategic defeat that came afterward. In other words, allowing conservatives to do the dirty work for the progressives doesn’t alter the beliefs of the progressives. It only enables it. It never leads to permanent change.
And I saw the same thing in Massachusetts during the 1990’s. The Democrats would crash the state fiscally with bleeding heart programs and corrupt practices and then the Republicans would have to clean it up. But they would never get any credit for the changes. And as soon as the ship was righted they would be replaced with another round of dysfunction. At best the Republicans were a relief valve that kept the whole insane machine from exploding.
Well, this is an old story. But Yarvin’s emphasis resonated with me. Winning a battle and losing the war was not something that should be done. What we can’t afford to do is patch up the Left’s system. We need to let them utterly fail at what they do. We need to exclude them from some endeavor as completely as is possible and then make that endeavor an undeniable success. And then keep them out of it.
Where I see that already happening is at the state level. Places like Florida and Texas and other states need to change their laws to make them uninviting for progressives fleeing from California and New York. And they need to protect themselves as completely as possible from the federal government. In that way they can build their own system and reap the benefits while excluding the Left.
Places like California and New York need to be completely abandoned by the Right. They need to crash completely. As I like to portray it, they need to reach the level where cannibalism is the dominant lifestyle of the inhabitants. Things need to get so bad that eventually the Leftists simply die off completely. And all that is left are normal human beings.
The point is victory is only victory when it weakens your enemy and strengthens you.