An Epiphany

Listening to ZMan’s latest podcast was something of an aha! moment for me.  The way he laid out how the managerial state arose and evolved gave me a moment of clarity.  It made it clear what we are dealing with.  This is a system that interlocks all of the decision makers and their supporters across government, industry, academia, schools, NGO’s and almost every major institution in the western world.  This is not something we’re going to overcome by voting in a President and Congress.  Even if we had the Supreme Court, the White House and supermajorities in the House and Senate these people running the government will refuse to implement whatever programs those elected representatives legislate.  They’ll figure a way to stymie it.  And they will attack the leaders of those bodies and destroy them.

And let’s face it, we’re not going to have supermajorities in the Congress again.  The Left controls the federal government and unless they do something so disastrous that it destroys the support their programs have with the managerial state that’s how it will remain.

Okay.  That’s the starting point.  I’ll stop counting electoral college votes.  That at least saves me some time and aggravation.  I’ll stop worrying about the House and the Senate too.

So, what can be done?  To my mind the hopelessness of changing the federal government just reinforces the idea that the only place change can occur will be in states that have a solid Republican voting base and leaders who understand what needs to be done to protect their people from the federal government and its poisonous influence.

But the podcast on managerialism clarified what that protection looks like.  It’s wonderful to see Ron DeSantis and some of the other governors getting laws passed and using executive orders to cancel out the worst aspects of the federal overreach.  Banning drag queen story hour and criminalizing juvenile transgender medical treatments are wonderful ideas in and of themselves.  But you can’t win this fight by being against things.

What must be done is to think clearly about what things must be preserved in order for our lives to be worth living.  And then to transmit this information through schools and colleges to inculcate the young.  And then you have to have the state and local governments legislate a coherent program for enforcing the actions that will preserve the values that have been recognized as necessary for the survival of a healthy society.

These laws will impact every layer of society and every institution.  Corporations, towns and cities, religious organizations, even professional societies like the AMA and the state bar will be held accountable.  The laws will be clear and enforced stringently.  During a transition period maybe the state can accommodate helping dissidents to relocate to blue states when life becomes too much for the lefties that find themselves left high and dry in red states.  For instance I’m guessing that the majority of people living in Austin, Texas will have to flee to California if my plan were carried out.

Now this all sounds very draconian.  And the idea of all society bound by an inflexible code that doesn’t allow for many behaviors that we have grown used to allowing seems almost outlandish.  But think of where we are.  We now have teachers telling impressionable young children that they are not boys or girls but the opposite.  We have men playing in women’s sports and sharing locker rooms with them.  If what we have now allows for these dysfunctional and frankly insane situations then drastic actions to get things back to normal and keeping them that way are completely understandable and necessary.

So, this is what I’ve realized.  We need to fix things from the ground up.  And the federal government will fight this tooth and claw.  I don’t doubt that everything from intimidation to assassination to military action may be brought to bear.  And maybe there’s no hope.  The federal government as I’ve said is backed up by the managerial state that encompasses an enormously powerful collection of organizations.  They really do control a lot of what we call America.

But this is the only way it’s going to happen.  Someone somewhere has to get the ball rolling and begin the process of standing up a state government that is committed to restoring all the things that make life worth living.

What are these things?  I’ll leave defining the full list to wiser heads than mine but what I know is indispensable is preserving families.  Whatever has to be done to allow men and women to raise their kids in functional and healthy families is the most important business of society.  After that we can add the Ten Commandments and go on from there.

ZMan Clearly Explains the Managerial State

ZMan has a podcast (below) providing a very convincing explanation for how our present bureaucratic system allows government bureaucrats and bureaucrats in business and education control essentially all aspects of our lives.  If you’re interested in understanding how the system you live in works, listen to this hour long podcast.

What the ZMan does not explain is how we get rid of such a system. He says the whole system has to be replaced.  That leaves the question how exactly you go about such a thing.  Curtis Yarvin would tell us we would have to somehow install a King/CEO who would fire/pension off the entire federal bureaucracy.  It would be interesting to hear these two fellows discuss this idea but it would probably turn into a food fight.

Highly recommended listen.

Managerial Polyarchy

The ZMan Riffs on Thucydides

This Thursday’s ZMan post is a comparison of the Sicilian Expedition to the Ukraine War.  Comparisons of Thucydides’ Athens to America is a perennial favorite on the Right.  As the ZMan very carefully adds this is not a perfect analogy.  The Sicilian Expedition was a military debacle of horrific proportions.  Athens had doubled and tripled down on manning and arming this expedition so that when the defeat occurred there was practically nothing and no one left to continue the war with Sparta.  We may have emptied our armory to outfit the Ukrainians but in order to mirror the damage done to the Spartans, it would be necessary for the Americans to lose several million soldiers in the field.

Despite the inevitable differences it is amazing how apt the comparison of ancient Athens is to present day America.  Even the current woke culture has its analog in the influence of the Sophists and their undermining of conservative norms.

It’s always interesting to look at the classics.  But who would Biden represent?  Certainly not Pericles.  Even the despised Cleon proved a much more capable war time leader than balloon boy Biden.  Maybe some obscure pederast in one of Aristophanes’ plays would do.

Anyway, a fun read.

Am. Greatness Publishes Rambling Ravings of Some Crackpot Named photog

So after Michael Anton wrote his final defense of natural rights in which he very interestingly quoted one of my posts, I found a number of reactions in the comments section thought provoking.  Mostly they were apologies for the Z-Man based on the premise (which is one of the underpinnings of the Dissident Right) that a multiracial society is doomed to failure because of the biological differences between people.

I thought that was worth discussing further and so I wrote my article and I was happy to find that American Greatness was willing to feature it on their worthy site.  So here is the link and I hope everyone goes over and reads it and leaves all kinds of interesting and highly complimentary comments that proclaim my groundbreaking insights and the general brilliance of Orion’s Cold Fire as both a font of political wisdom and also a source of entertaining cultural content.

Does Inequality Make America Impossible?


All Men Are Created Unequal. Does That Make America Impossible?

In the comments section that followed Michael Anton’s recent post about natural rights (“Farewell to Z-Man!

Once More on the Question of Natural Right”), a commentor said,

“Z-man is anonymous because he writes about biological differences, which is a capital offense in our society. Anton is a colorblind civic nationalist, so he doesn’t have to fear having his life destroyed for his views.

I agree that Anton and Z-man would better spend their time fighting the Left, but the schism between those on the Right who believe that there are biological differences among the various peoples of the Earth and those who don’t believe that is fundamental.

That is at the core of the debate between Anton and Z-man. Anton says that natural rights are universal and ever-present. That implies are all peoples are the same at all times. Anton rejects biological differences. Z-man says that the rights put forth by the Founding Fathers were based on their nature. The rights grew out of the particular biology of that people, Anglo-Americans.

For Z-man, culture is downstream from biology. For Anton, biology doesn’t matter at all. That is a fundamental difference.

Anton is a colorblind civic nationalist. He doesn’t believe that culture stems from biology.

His issue with the refugees is that they come from a culture that despises American values. That makes complete sense. However, for Anton, it’s about the culture, not the people. It’s why people like Anton has such a hard time arguing with the Left about immigration.

The Left says we should have open borders or, at least, very large immigration, especially, refugees because we’re all the same so why keep people out. Anton tries to refute this by arguing that we can only let in so many so that they can absorb our culture and truly accept American values. The Left calls him cold-hearted.

Anton has no response other (than) technical arguments because he accepts the Left’s morality: that all people are (literally) created equal so the burden of proof is on him to show why some people shouldn’t be allowed in.

Z-man doesn’t accept the Left’s morality. His argument for why we should reject the Afghani refugees is that they are a different people who will never accept our culture because their biology is different.

And before you start acting like the Left and call Z-man (or me) a racist, just remember that Z-man’s beliefs are pretty much the same as most people around the world, including Israelis and Japanese.

If this was Israel or Japan, their version of Anton would simply say, “No. We will not let in these refugees because they aren’t Jewish or Japanese.”

Anton disagrees with the Israelis and Japanese. He and the Left believe in the Blank Slate, that we are all lumps of clay that can be molded into any form if you just get the culture right.

Ironically, Anton rejects nature’s role in culture.”

Much of what is said here is essentially an accurate description of the difference of positions between the Dissident Right (e.g., the Z-Man) and the Civic Nationalists (e.g., Michael Anton, me).  But there are some subtle differences that I think need to be addressed.  I won’t speak for all Civic Nationalists but I will say for myself that I categorically deny that all human beings are equal in their abilities and have the same temperaments.  In fact, I’ll go as far as saying that human beings are heterogeneous at almost every level.  Even within the same nuclear family there will be remarkable differences of intellect, physique, personality and appearance among siblings.  And between different ethnicities and races the differences will be even larger.  You don’t have to leave the same continent to find the pygmies and the Tutsi.  The first group are hunter gatherers who average less than 4’ 10” in height while the latter are pastoralists that average 6’ but are not uncommonly over 7’ in height.  As far as differences of intelligence and temperament between groups of people there are all kinds of scientific studies and popular descriptions to provide speculation for these differences.

But the basic question isn’t whether these differences exist.  The question is do these differences prevent us from living together in a meritocracy?  In other words, if I’m stupider than my neighbor Bob will that mean we can’t live in the same society without eventually being at each other’s throats?  My belief is we can live together.

The Dissident Right does not believe this.  And as proof they point to the present nightmare we’re living through with “Black Lives Matter,” George Floyd and the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion racket being run against white people.

Well, that’s a pretty powerful argument.  Add that to the fifty years of affirmative action and forced integration and you have a pretty bleak picture.

But the Left has been using this equality of outcome scam for decades as a proof that white people are discriminating against blacks.  And for whatever reason we’ve been letting them get away with it.  I no longer think it’s a convincing argument.  America is a multi-ethnic, multi-racial society and there is every combination of races and capacities on display.  And what is clearest is that trying to hire people according to their skin color is a recipe for disaster.  Everyone has probably seen or heard of people who were hired under affirmative action quotas and were completely unqualified for the job.  And what is also extremely clear is that African Americans are not the object of systemic racism.  Currently heterosexual white men are the ones being discriminated against and openly.  It seems clear that demanding the end of affirmative action and other anti-white policies and a return to a meritocratic system is the correct way to put all this racialist nonsense behind us.

To do this it will require places like Florida that have a Republican government to refuse to allow anti-white, affirmative action programs to continue.  And the very color-blind approach that the above commentor seems to disparage is the correct approach.  The United States need to get out of the race business.  In fact, I don’t think we should even list it on birth certificates or other government documents at all.  You might as well list my blood type and what kind of belly button I have too.  Instead, we should be concentrating more on things like SAT scores and which computer languages have been mastered.

Now of course maybe the Z-Man is right and the Republicans are hopelessly unable to fend off accusations of racism and they will always be the losers when the Left plays this racket.  If this is so we’ll see this play out.  But I’d like to believe someone like Ron DeSantis is the future.  He recently rejected the High School Advanced Placement curriculum for African American Studies because it was filled with lies.  This is the way to change things.  Just say no and then make it stick.  It’s not easy.  It’s a slog and a fight.  But if we choose fighters to represent us, we will get results.  If we choose squishes like Jeb! Bush, we get what we have now.

So sure, things are bad but I’m not ready to start the race war.  I think we can have a first world country without a civil war.  But it remains to be seen whether the people who claim to be our leaders are willing to fight to save it.  If they’re not then the Dissident Right will be correct.

Michael Anton Quotes From OCF – That’s Pretty Cool


Back in the before time when 2016 was shaping up to be a contest between Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush I first read Michael Anton’s essay “The Flight 93 Election”.  And the fact that someone with an academic background and a connection to Washington understood just how bleak the Uniparty options were for this country impressed me greatly.

And afterwards as I perceived that he was pursuing those at at the far outer edges of conservative thought to provide fresh ideas for a political movement that was hollowed out at the top I was encouraged   Because we really do need much more coordination and honest dialog if we’re even going to survive the onslaught of the monolithic Left.

Now I’m not a great thinker.  I’m just a schmoe who got tired of being thrown off of photography and science fiction websites because I didn’t kowtow to the Left’s shibboleths and put together my own site where I can say whatever damn thing I want to.  But I practiced in my own humble way what Anton was doing.  I read far and wide on the on the internet.  Back in 2015 and 2016 there were all kinds of crazy people involved in the pro-Trump movement.  And beyond the pro-Trump movement there were the dissidents for whom Trump was just a symptom.  And I learned quite a bit about the various factions and ideologies and to be honest, the various hates that exist on the Right.

And I can see that there are strengths and weaknesses in each of them.  But what is also true is that the Left’s use of surrogates on the Right to disqualify anyone dangerous to the Left has been one of their most successful strategies.  William F. Buckley was famous for this.

And the neocons tried to do it to Donald Trump to stop him from being elected.  So I made a point to keep an open mind about fringe thinkers.  And so I read people like the Z-Man.  And I’ve found him to be spot on about a whole raft of things that affect our lives.  He’s a very smart guy.

But he’s just one guy.  We need about thirty million guys working together just to stop this train from going off the cliff.  So on balance I have to give the prize to people like Anton and even Gottfried who may disagree on a multitude of intellectual points but at least are willing to hold a discussion about their differences.  To my mind honest disagreement can be enlightening for both sides.  You don’t have to convince the other guy but you do have to make an effort to clarify your position for the readers.  And I believe that’s how we’ll end up with some kind of a coalition.

So I woke up this morning and I saw I had some traffic coming over from American Greatness.  Now I wrote a couple of posts for them a few years back but nothing recently so i was interested.  and there I saw this post by Michael Anton.  He quoted a blog post I wrote a week or two ago going over my thoughts on the Anton / Z-Man war.

I won’t deny I was pretty happy thinking that somehow Michael Anton had visited my site.  After all I had read his article about seven years ago and it had been one of the inspirations for my blogging and many other activities I had engaged in over the years.  He had crystallized many of the thoughts that had been growing in my mind ever since the George Bush presidency had destroyed my belief in the Republican establishment.

But beyond my own private satisfaction in being noticed, it gives me hope that there are people trying to build something bigger than just Donald Trump or Ron DeSantis or Twitter.  We need an actual identity and a mission to save this country.  We at least have to agree on what we’re trying to save.  I think Anton believes that.

It’s a start.

When Our Worlds Collide

When a chemical engineer is tasked with designing a mixing system for insoluble liquids, he has to calculate the amount of energy needed to turn the liquids into an emulsion.  So, these liquids that completely repel each other like water and oil can be suspended in each other and thereby come in intimate contact with each other.  And in that state they can be smoothly reacted with each other by some catalyst or chemical.

Something similar has occurred between the different camps on the Right.  Michael Anton describes himself as a lecturer and research fellow at Hillsdale College, a senior fellow at the Claremont Institute, and a former national security official in the Trump Administration.  He became well-known for writing the “Flight 93 Election” back before the 2016 presidential election when he advocated for Donald Trump as our last chance to stop the country from sliding into leftist tyranny.

He is as far philosophically as anyone on the real Right can be from the Z-Man when it comes to beliefs about the nature of government.  And yet these two men have now made contact.  Specifically, Anton has written a (very) long post at American Greatness defending the concept of natural rights against an assertion that the Z-Man made that natural rights do not exist.  And in fact, the Z-Man’s post was a reaction to an Anton post that was itself a reaction to an essay by yet another personality on the Right the paleoconservative Paul Gottfried.  Enough agitation is occurring in our environment to bring these various species in contact with each other and the interaction is yielding change and reaction.

Now suffice it to say that what passes for debate here is more like low intensity warfare (especially in the comments sections).  But I think the fact that, at least, they are beginning to acknowledge each other’s existence is the beginning of communication.  And this communication is important.  Not so much for the writers but for the readers.  Currently the ideas of the various groups on the Right are pretty thoroughly siloed.  Having the readers get a taste of the other opinions around is all for the good.  These ideas need to be banged around against each other a good deal for some clarity to emerge.  People need to compare the words to the world around them and decide which model is right or mostly right.  Because chances are no one model is completely correct.  There could be valuable insights from more than one camp.  And it’s possible that minds could be changed on certain points if a wider consensus is formed.

So, this is just talk.  But it’s a beginning.  One thing that’s been totally lacking on the right is any kind of open discussion of the taboo subjects.  We’ve allowed the Left to control the allowable agenda for discussion on the Right for generations.  What we’re seeing is the beginning of the breakdown of that control.  It hasn’t reached the point where the establishment Right will acknowledge the relevance of the dissident opinions but the middle is starting to address them.  Once the majority of the non-Left has shifted to the edge of the dissident territory the establishment will be forced kicking and screaming to the right.  What happens after that is unknown.

It may turn out that the Left will outright win and all this will be moot.  But if the Right manages to push the country in our direction, then the establishment Right will convince themselves that they were always in the vanguard of this great movement and deserve all the praise and benefits.  And eventually the Right will overstep itself and some reaction will occur.

But that’s hardly anything for us to worry about.  It will take a generation just to stop the leftward swing of the cultural pendulum, never mind getting it back to the center.  But it is encouraging to see the center acknowledge the dissident position and even begin to give grudging approval to some of their ideas.  Let’s see what’s next.

ZMan Talks About Supporting Your Own Community

The ZMan walks the talk in that he supports some dissident friendly businesses on his website.  In this week’s podcast he expounds on why this is going to be more important as the gulf between progressive America and non-progressive people becomes insurmountable..

The quote I liked was:

“For dissidents, the only way forward is to develop a counter-culture, which means politicizing our own lives fully. How you spend your money, where you spend your money and on whom you spend your money must be political. How you live, where you live and with whom you live is political. In order to build a counterculture, the dissident must become a fully political animal.”

Let’s Get Small


The ZMan Has a Bit to Say About Energy

He runs through the ins and outs of how our whole world runs on cheap energy.  My favorite thought is, “The real reserve currency of the world is the BTU and the dollar is the physical manifestation of it. The war on Russia, like the war on Iran, is as much about protecting the control of energy as it is ideology. What we are seeing is that the countries with vast energy wealth are starting to figure out that they are better off as partners rather than as competitors.”

Ah, the British Thermal Unit.  Metric units be damned.

It’s about time Westerners figured out that windmills and solar panels mean poverty for them and their descendants and start figuring out where the energy source for the year 2200 is going to be.  The Germans are pretty smart maybe they’ll start taking those nuke plants out of mothballs after they freeze their own balls off this winter.

I have a hunch geothermal energy and hydrogen as a vehicle fuel is the way things will go but you never know.  Funny things can happen.  But windmills it won’t be.

Let’s go Brandon!