college dorms are liberal re-education camps

Over at Oz Conservative commenter Flavia has this to say,

“The process of sending young women off to live in college dorms, with in loco parentis abandoned, to find their way in the world induced a set of anti-civilizing behaviors. There is really no way to encourage this behavior and have defense of Western values as a result.”

I couldn’t agree more. We’re sending these young women off to liberal re-education camps. And they’re not just being indoctrinated with liberalism but extremist liberalism. Even the ones who don’t mutate into full-fledged SJW harpies are still absorbing their share of the poison.
We need to re-think higher education. We have a lot more of it than we need and it’s doing colossal social and cultural damage. Universities are bad enough but having students living on-campus is disastrous.
We need to reduce the number of university places since the vast majority of people have no need whatever for a university education. We need to gut the humanities faculties. We need to changer our entire approach.

cucks by name and cucks by nature

I disliked the term cuckservsative the first time I heard it. I’m still not totally convinced by it but I find myself using it more and more often. It’s just so damned useful.
It really does perfectly capture a certain mindset. It’s especially useful when used against weak cowardly “conservative” men. There’s the implication of a lack of manhood, and a lack of manhood is one of the biggest problems we face today. It’s not just that today’s men don’t have the guts to physically contest the invasion of their own countries and their own erasure from their society. They don’t even have the guts to stand up to verbal assaults. They’ve allowed themselves to be emasculated and cuck is somehow just the right term to describe them.
Ridicule can be a potent weapon and that makes cuck an even more useful term.
It also has the advantage that cucks hate being called cucks!

the alt-right and the politics of humour

Humour can be a very effective political weapon. It is by its nature a weapon that is more useful to dissidents than to those who defend the status quo. For this reason political humour has for most of modern history been most effectively wielded by the Left.
Humour was used to devastating effect by the New Left in the 1960s and 1970s. They were able to use it to promote the idea of themselves as funny, clever, irreverent and cool and even more importantly to portray their enemies as humourless, stuffy and terminally uncool.
Humour may not have won the culture war for the cultural left but it did play its part.
Today the political landscape is very different. The Left is in complete control of the culture (although in fact leftists are merely useful idiots for the globalist capitalists and bureaucratic managerial types who really run things).
Those who were the glamorous rebels in the 60s and 70s are now the establishment. And being the establishment has crippled leftist humour. Just try sitting through ”progressive” comedy. It’s an ordeal. Being terrified of offending dozens of protected victim groups leaves no real scope for being funny.
In today’s world humour has become a weapon that can be most easily and most effectively wielded by the dissidents of the right. The alt-right in particular has discovered just how potent a weapon humour can be. Their humour might be vulgar and cruel and irreverent but those are exactly the qualities that made the leftist humour of half a century ago so devastating. 
The alt-right obsession with Pepe the Frog and similar memes might be somewhat childish  but the constant trolling of liberals (especially the undeniably amusing efforts of /pol/ to troll liberals with fake white supremacist memes) is having the effect of making liberal ideologist seem ridiculous. And one should never underestimate the potency of ridicule. The alt-right’s use of humour does seem to be having some effect in making liberalism seem ugly, oppressive and unattractive. It has to some extent wrong-footed the liberal establishment and that’s a positive thing.

the city vs country front of the culture war

One aspect of the culture wars that is often misunderstood and underestimated is the city vs rural antipathy. More particularly, the venomous hatred that city people nurse towards country people. Anyone who isn’t a city-dweller is assumed to be a moronic knuckle-dragging yokel and a hateful bigot.
This seems to be much more extreme in the United States than anywhere else. American city-dwellers really seem to hate and fear rural folk. The contempt of US coastal elites for the denizens of “flyover country” is well known. It’s partly class hatred but it seems to be more than that. There seems to be an extraordinary irrational fear at work.
This is not one of those things that suddenly emerged in the 1960s. In the US at least it goes back much further. Just as an example I watched a 1944 movie called Together Again a few weeks earlier. On the surface it was a harmless screwball comedy. At least that’s how it starts out. As you keep watching you discover that the nice people of the idyllic little small town which is the film’s setting are not nice people after all. They are actually hateful bigots. And the reason they’re hateful bigots is that they’re small-town folk, and being a hateful bigot is what small-town folk do. Here’s my full review of the movie in question.
So is it natural for city-dwellers to hate rural people? Or is to something that has been fostered by the cultural elites? The cultural elites have been liberal and/or leftist for a very long time, at least a century (particularly in the US). Rural people tend to be more in touch with traditional ways of life and more in sympathy with traditional values. It’s not really surprising that the cultural elites hated them. I think it’s fair to say it’s been a deliberate campaign to portray country people as stupid and dangerous.
It’s one of those things you don’t notice very much at first but when you do become aware of it you start seeing it all over the place in popular culture and especially American popular culture.

tipping points and the phony consensus

This is an amplification of my earlier post how intolerance wins but I think the subject is important enough to justify a second post.
My theory of politics is that it mostly comes down to the human desire to conform. Our strongest instinct is to ensure our acceptance within our social group.
Most people do not hold strong political views. If you asked the average person to explain his political philosophy you’d get some vague platitudes. It’s only a very small minority that actually holds very strongly held views on politics. Those small minorities do however have an extremely disproportionate influence merely by virtue of the fact that they are strongly motivated.
Most people choose the line of least resistance. At any one time there will only be a small range of political opinions that are socially acceptable. The average person chooses a political allegiance from within that range. It is socially acceptable to be in favour of unlimited immigration or to be in favour of very very high levels of legal immigration with a few token attempts to favour better qualified immigrants; it is not socially acceptable to be opposed to legal immigration. It is socially acceptable to be in favour of homosexual marriage; no other position on that issue is acceptable.
These limits on acceptable political views are largely enforced by social pressure. If everyone in your office claims to be in favour of open borders then anyone who disagrees will face social penalties. The most you can hope to get away with is disagreeing privately while pretending to conform outwardly. In actual fact there may be others who also disagree with the accepted view but because no-one dares to express open disagreement you will still feel totally isolated socially if you dare to dissent. If everyone in your family claims to be an enthusiastic proponent of homosexual marriage then you’d have to be pretty bold to express a contrary view.
This is how particular beliefs become the consensus view. It is crucial to note that it is not necessary for an opinion to be held by the majority in order for it to be accepted as the consensus view. A minority, if it is sufficiently motivated, sufficiently bloody-minded, sufficiently intransigent and sufficiently hysterical, can impose its view as the consensus view. Most people will then conform because for most people it’s just not worth the grief to swim against the tide. Especially when you’re dealing with SJWs. They are prepared to go well beyond mere social pressure – they will if they can cause you to lose your job for daring to disagree with them.
The consensus view is, more often than not, a phony consensus enforced by fear.
This might seem depressing but there is another side. The consensus view prevails as long as the number of people prepared to question it is so small that such people can easily be marginalised, isolated and neutralised. If however enough people are prepared to question the consensus can quickly become rather shaky. If there are forty people in your office and you’re the only one openly dissenting you’ll end up either being forced to conform or forced to leave. But if two or three other people openly dissent then it’s not so easy for the consensus to be enforced. And pretty soon you’ll have a couple more doubters challenging the consensus, at which point the usual SJW intimidation tactics become relatively ineffective. It’s all a matter of reaching a tipping point.
And bear in mind that of the forty people in that hypothetical office it’s likely that at least twenty-five do not have any really strong views on the matter at all. They just go with the flow. If a contrary view that challenges the consensus becomes socially acceptable and if there are no longer any effective social penalties for holding that contrary view then many of those “undecideds” may well find the contrary view to be rather attractive.
The key to success is to borrow a page from the SJW playbook – be just as intransigent and just as stubborn as they are. It’s not necessary to overturn a monolithic hostile majority – what appeared to be a hostile majority was probably always only a vocal minority.

Ways of Seeing, wrongly

John Berger

Art critic John Berger is dead, at the age of 90. When I was a young leftist Berger was one of my heroes. Looking back now I can see that Berger was not only wrong about everything, he was dangerously wrong. Unfortunately Berger was immensely influential and his books are still used as university textbooks.

Berger was best-known for his 1972 BBC TV series (and its accompanying book) Ways of Seeing. A few years earlier Lord Kenneth Clark had presented a magisterial overview of western culture from the 12th century to the modern age in his muh-lauded Civilisation TV series. Ways of Seeing was intended as a counter to Clark’s program, undermining Clark’s  positive view of our culture. Where Clark celebrated western culture Berger was determined to deconstruct and destroy that same culture.
Modernist art is of course nothing more than a sustained attack on western civilisation. The problem for modernists is that anyone who isn’t blind or stupid (or sufficiently indoctrinated) can see that modernist art, when compared to the great works of the western tradition, is infantile rubbish. The only way to get modernist art accepted was to discredit the western artistic tradition. This was Berger’s project.
Berger was a marxist and his approach to art was marxist. Of course trying to apply marxist class analysis to the study of anything pre-19th century is futile. Classes, as understood in marxism, simply did not exist in a pre-industrial world. Berger wasn’t going to let that stop him.

It wasn’t enough to make people dislike the great works of western art. They had to be taught to see them as evil and patriarchal and oppressive. Berger saw all art as expressing a political ideology, because that was the only way he could understand art. Needless to say the western artistic tradition turns out to have been evil capitalist propaganda. Berger was also influenced by feminism so of course the great works of western art turned out to have been evil patriarchal propaganda. Berger had a considerable influence on feminist art criticism, one of the great blights of the modern age.

As is the case with so many art critics in the modern world I never got any sense that Berger actually liked art. He liked politics and he liked political art but he liked political art because it was political, not because it was art. Art as such was irrelevant. It was the political message that mattered.
Berger’s knowledge of art history was unimpressive but he knew how to cherry-pick works of art that he could use to advance his misguided theories.
The trouble is that we can’t just dismiss Berger as a wrong-headed misguided leftist loon (although that’s an accurate description of him) – Berger is solidly in the mainstream of modern art criticism. Our universities and art schools are infested with such people. The work of destruction, to which Berger was an enthusiastic contributor, goes on.

how intolerance wins

An interesting article by Nassim Nicholas Taleb on on why intolerant minorities always win – The Most Intolerant Wins: The Dictatorship of the Small Minority. They win because they’re intransigent on a particular issue and because the majority are not prepared to go to the barricades over issues that don’t seem to be of great or immediate importance to them.
He’s not talking just about politics and religion. His example of peanut allergies is very instructive. For the small minority of parents whose children supposedly have peanut allergies it’s an issue on which no compromise can be accepted. For the convenience of their children every child in the school has to be denied access to peanuts. For the vast majority of parents whose children do not have peanut allergies it’s not an issue worth making a huge fuss over. It’s not worth fighting for and so the majority chooses the line of least resistance and accepts the banning of all peanut products in schools.
While it applies to all sorts of issues the fact that an intransigent minority will almost always get its way has obvious and vast implications in the social and political sphere. It is not necessary for these intolerant minorities to convert the majority to their point of view. They can remain a small minority and still win every political battle.
Perhaps the majority needs to learn this lesson and to put it into practice. If a large enough proportion of the majority actually is prepared to put up a fight then the intolerant minority could be defeated.
There’s also a lesson for social conservatives. They have lost every battle in the culture wars because although the social radicals always were a tiny minority they were focused, intolerant and completely bloody-minded. Social conservatives assumed they were dealing with people who were essentially reasonable and open to compromise. A fatal mistake.
Another issue that Taleb dopesn’t touch on directly (although it’s implied in his article) is that successful intolerant minorities tend to be extremely well disciplined.
The article does perhaps offer some hope. It is always possible to learn from your enemies. Even if the number of social conservatives and anti-globalists prepared to put up a fight is relatively small they could succeed by adopting the same tactics – by being just as intransigent and bloody-minded as the SJWs and globalists.
The lesson is that if you try to be moderate and reasonable you will lose every time.  Maybe it’s time we gave intransigence and bloody-mindedness a chance.