nationalism and the myth of nation states

I spoke about nationalism in my previous post. I want to say a bit more on the subject. What I have to say is unpalatable but it needs to be said.
Nationalism is no longer a viable proposition because generally speaking nation states as they existed between the Treaty of Westphalia in 1648 and 1945 no longer exist.
A nation state is a political entity that is capable of asserting its independence. This requires both the military capacity and the political willingness to do so. According to this criterion the only independent nation states that exist in today’s world are the United States, Russia, China and (possibly) India.
The idea that any other country has this capability is pure fantasy. 
Let us assume that Italy, or Japan, or Brazil, or France or Britain decided that as a matter of national survival they needed to wage war against some other state. Could they do so? The answer of course is that they could not. They would need to ask the United States for permission to do so. It is unthinkable that any of these countries could fight a war, even a war for national survival, without first seeking Washington’s approval and then seeking US aid. In other words not one of these countries is a true nation state. They are mere vassal states.
In 1982 Britain was only with great difficulty able to defeat a Third World nation, Argentina. It was a near run thing and Britain won because from Argentina’s point of view it was not a war for survival and it was therefore not worth making it a fight to the finish. If Britain faced the same situation today she would have to abandon the Falklands. Britain also no longer has its own nuclear deterrent. Britain’s Trident missiles belong to the United States. The recent controversy over whether Jeremy Corbyn as prime minister would or would not use nuclear weapons was irrelevant, No British prime minister could use nuclear weapons without Washington’s permission. The Trident missiles allow Britain to indulge in the fantasy that Britain is a great power. In fact Britain is not even a proper nation state, merely an American vassal.
The Second World War marked the end of the nation state system. It marked the end of European nation states. Western Europe became part of the American Empire. The EU is merely a means by which that empire can be controlled more easily and more conveniently.
The problem of nationalism today is how can you have nationalism without nation states that are in control of their own destinies?

nationalism, internationalism and globalism

If you’ve ever spent more than five minutes in the dissident right corner of the internet you’ve heard the phrase, “The real political divide today is not between left and right but between nationalism and globalism.” I’ve said it myself.
Are things quite as simple as that? Is nationalism really more organic, more traditional, more healthy, than globalism?
Nationalism is a fairly recent phenomenon. It did not exist in the ancient world, nor in the medieval world. In fact it did not really exist until the mid-17th century. The Treaty of Westphalia of 1648 which ended the Thirty Years War marked the formal recognition that nation states were now the effective political units of Europe. And nationalism did not take deep root in the European psyche until the end of the 18th century.
Prior to that there were of course strong local sentiments based on shared language, culture and religion but these had little bearing on the actual political arrangements of Europe. The political unit was the dynastic unit. Insofar as people had political loyalties those loyalties were owed to the local lord and ultimately to the king, or in central Europe they were owed to the local lord, to the prince and ultimately to the emperor. A kingdom could comprise a variety of ethnic groups and cultures and languages and even religions. The boundaries of kingdoms shifted constantly as dynastic marriages split existing political units or caused larger units to coalesce.
You might not speak the same language as your king, you might not belong to the same ethnic group, you might not share his culture or his religion but that did not affect your loyalty.
Prior to the Reformation most (but by no means all) of Europe belonged to a single entity known as Christendom but this was not a political unit. The head of Christendom was the Pope. His spiritual authority existed side by side with the political authority of kings.
Europe functioned perfectly well without nationalism. Multi-ethnic multi-faith multi-cultural political entities such as the empire of the Habsburgs were extremely successful. No modern nation state has lasted as long as the empire of the Habsburgs.
The Europe of the dynastic system and of Christendom had nothing in common with modern nationalism, but at the same time it also had nothing in common with modern globalism. It represents a third option and it is an option that is usually ignored, partly because it most people don’t understand it and partly because it didn’t suit modern political agendas.
It’s also worth pointing out that internationalism as such is by no means identical with globalism. Take for example the European Union. The EU is evil not because it’s internationalist. The idea of European political unity is not inherently evil. The idea of Europe has much to recommend it. The Second World War demonstrated with brutal clarity that European nation states were defenceless against the power and wealth of the United States. If Europe was going to avoid becoming an American colony then some degree of political and economic unity was essential. 
The problem with the EU is not that it’s corrupt and undemocratic (although it is corrupt and undemocratic). The problem is that it’s run by people who hate Europeans, hate European culture and are ashamed of themselves for being European. It is run by people who are fundamentally hostile to European civilisation. It is run by people whose loyalty is to bankers.
This is the problem with almost all internationalist organisations today. They are run by bankers for bankers.
It is extremely unlikely that organisations like the EU can be reformed. The EU will never serve the interests of Europeans. The idea of Europe on the other hand still has some validity. The question is whether it will ever be possible to bring about a European unity that will serve the interests of Europeans.
The idea of regional internationalism is also not inherently evil. Countries like Australia cannot exist in the modern world as viable independent nation states. They simply do not have the economic, military and political muscle to be anything other than satellites of great powers. Countries like Australia (and Canada and Britain) are, in political terms, merely American vassal states. In the long term their only hope of avoiding such vassalage is by being part of regional power groupings.
It is also clear that, in the absence of such regional power groupings, the entire world is going to end up being divided into two gigantic spheres of influence, one dominated by the United States and one dominated by China. This is why the idea of resurrecting the caliphate is so attractive to many Muslims. Independent Islamic nations are merely pawns in the game of power politics played by great powers. A caliphate uniting a large part of the Islamic world would have some chance of political independence. It is their only chance of preserving their culture and their religion and it ids therefore going to be increasingly seen as not only desirable but essential.
Nationalism is certainly preferable to globalism. It is however doubtful whether in the modern world nationalism can defeat globalism. While I’ve been quite sceptical of ideas like white nationalism I can understand why such ideas seem attractive. If nationalism is a spent force then perhaps other options for fighting globalism need to be considered.

what are European nationalists actually fighting for?

We need to be honest and clear-headed when examining the rise of the nationalist so-called far right parties in Europe. It would be pleasant to imagine that these parties are fighting to defend western civilisation but is that really the case? It seems to me that what they’re fighting for is a vision of western civilisation that is starkly at odds with the beliefs of traditionalists and social conservatives.
These parties, including the FN in France and Geert Wilders’ party in the Netherlands, have shown an alarming willingness to compromise on moral issues. In fact they’re prepared to make almost unlimited compromises on moral issues. The problem with this is that you can’t defend civilisation by abandoning everything that makes civilisation civilised.
In practice these nationalist parties are fighting for rainbow flags and Gay Pride marches. They’re fighting to defend the right of women to murder their unborn babies. They’re fighting for the right of feminists to go on destryong the foundations of society. They’re fighting for the rights of homosexuals to prey on our children. They’re fighting for the rights of liberals to brainwash our kids. 
They’re not defending civilisation. They’re defending liberalism.
It’s not the slight left-wing leanings of these parties that should worry us. It’s the fact that they are demonstrating very little willingness to oppose the moral degeneracy which is overwhelming the West.
There’s also very little sign that these parties have any vision of a Christian Europe. 
I’d like to see European civilisation saved, but only if there’s a European civilisation that is actually worth saving.

are there any men left in Europe?

2016 was a year that many people believed to be a watershed. The Brexit vote and the election of Trump offered hope that perhaps globalism wasn’t invincible, that perhaps globalists were guilty of over-reaching and of underestimating their opponents. 
Now 2017 has come and reality is starting to assert itself. The Dutch elections were a calamity for the nationalist party. The first round of the French presidential election has been a bitterly disappointing result for Marine Le Pen and the FN. She obviously has no chance whatever of victory in the second round. The French people have found a candidate who really captures their imaginations – who wouldn’t be swept away with enthusiasm at the thought of having a globalist banker as president?
The British elections look like being a triumphal procession for the Tories. At a time when a genuine alternative to the major parties is needed more desperately than ever UKIP has failed to re-invent itself as the party that could provide that alternative. Instead UKIP has become an irrelevance. Labour seems to be headed for what might well be the worst defeat in the party’s history. The Tories should win an overwhelming majority, which may strengthen the hand of those within the party determined to sabotage Brexit.
We really have to face the unpalatable truth that the political process is merely an exercise in futility.
There’s another point that is becoming more obvious and more disturbing. The European nationalist parties all seem to be led by women or homosexuals, or by girly men. In Germany the AfD’s new leader is a lesbian. Of course it’s always been obvious that there is nothing remotely far right about any of these parties. All of the European nationalist parties that the media describes as far right are actually solidly centre-left. That really isn’t a problem. 
What is a problem is that these parties are all liberal parties. They are all committed to the liberal social agenda. Maybe they’re not quite as extreme in this regard as the mainstream parties but they would all have to be described as very socially liberal. These parties might claim to be committed to defending European civilisation and values but their ideas of what constitute the core values of that civilisation are very very depressing. To them European civilisation is all about tolerance, secularism, abortion and homosexual marriage.
In fact the programs of these parties are pretty much what you’d expect of parties led by women, male feminists and homosexuals.
Are there any actual men at all left in Europe? Any men who have not been totally emasculated? What has happened? Are they putting something in the water? A civilisation led by women and homosexuals is headed for catastrophe.

the Dutch election and the Trump Factor

An interesting sidelight on the Dutch election is the Trump Factor. I’ve seen reports that support for Wilders’ PVV party started to plummet after he came out as a Trump supporter.
European intellectuals have for decades had an absolutely visceral hatred for Americans, and particularly for Americans like Trump who glory in their Americanness. That hatred has now permeated most of European society. Europeans like to imagine they are morally and intellectually superior to Americans. Which is pretty amusing when you consider the catastrophic course of European history in the past century.
It’s partly a matter of style. Trump’s style plays very well in the US. It antagonises European.
It’s also a matter of class. Trump obviously likes ordinary people, including working-class people. European intellectuals loathe and despise the working class, and intellectuals have real influence in Europe. 
The style and the class elements combined have caused a complete psychological meltdown among European intellectuals and the European media. The anti-Trump hysteria in the European media even surpasses that in the US media. The end result of this may be that moderates have been frightened off. Even people who agree with Wilders on immigration are afraid of being associated with someone who admires Trump. 
Europeans don’t seem to like outspoken charismatic leaders. They like bland managerial types, the more boring the better. They seem to think that strong charismatic leaders are automatically fascists. As a result they have had seventy years of weak treacherous leadership.
Never underestimate the European terror of being labeled fascist. Americans can pass such things off as jokes but Europeans (at least western Europeans) can’t. Western Europeans would rather die than be thought of as racists or fascists. The way things are going that’s probably the fate in store for them.
It might be advisable for Marine le Pen to do everything possible to distance herself from Trump.

The Last Days of Europe

In The Last Days of Europe distinguished historian Walter Laqueur argues that Europe as we know it will cease to exist at some point during the 21st century. What will replace it is not likely to be pleasant.

Laqueur identifies a number of major problems but by far the most serious is the collapse of European populations. The birthrate is so low in countries such as Italy and Spain that by the end of the century Italians and Spaniards will be no more than a tiny minority in their own countries. The situation in Russia is even more disastrous.

The second problem, Muslim immigration on a vast scale, will magnify the catastrophic consequences of the demographic collapse. In some European countries the Muslim population is reproducing at three or four time the rate of the European population. The Muslim minorities have not assimilated and are not going to assimilate, and when they become the majority they are unlikely to benign rulers, especially given that Muslims in Europe tend to be more radical and more extremist that Muslims in the present-day Islamic world.

The most frightening thing of all is that Europe’s leaders have simply ignored these problems until now it is too late.

No-one, including Laqueur, has been able to come up with a plausible explanation for the demogaphic suicide of Europe. Laqueur can offer few suggestions for dealing with the problems he has outlined. The best he can offer is that Europeans might try appeasement towards their rapidly growing Muslim population although he admits that appeasement has never worked in any other situation and is even less likely to work in this one.

An extremely good although thoroughly depressing book.