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On Wilmot Robertson

Wilmot [1]1,024 words

Translations: French [2]

Author’s Note:

These somewhat disorganized thoughts were my contribution to a panel discussion of Robertson at a private gathering in October 2013. 

Wilmot Robertson was first recommended to my attention by Sam Francis over lunch one day in 2003. The next time I saw him, unwilling to leave the matter to my initiative, he simply thrust a copy of The Dispossessed Majority into my hand. He described the work his own generation’s authoritative statement of racial nationalism, meaning that it was an appropriate starting point for those of us becoming active in the new century, a way of “getting up to speed,” so to speak. And rereading the book for this panel, I was indeed struck by its usefulness in this respect. The author traces minority domination back to the New Deal and, in part, even back to the presidency of Woodrow Wilson, naming names along the way: Louis Brandeis, Henry Morgenthau Sr. and Jr., Harry Dexter White, Felix Frankfurter, Emmanuel Celler. Very few young nationalists know this history, and they need to understand that the white man’s problems did not begin with the so-called civil rights movement or the 1960s.

I would like to draw your attention to Robertson’s strictures on conservatism:

The modern conservative’s net effect on Majority members (he writes) is to anesthetize them into dropping their racial guard at the very moment they need it most. That is why, of all those who consciously or unconsciously oppose the majority cause, the modern conservative is the most dangerous.

How perfectly these words express my own frustration with conservatives who, it seems to me, should be our allies! How many conservatives are content to go on talking about the founding fathers even as Americans are being pushed aside by people whose idea of a founding father is Pancho Villa! This is just the sort of blindness Robertson had in mind when he wrote of those “who stubbornly go on believing that a set of highly sophisticated institutions developed by and for a particular people at a particular point in time and space is operational for all peoples under all circumstances.”

Tom Tancredo, who for years was the principal voice in congress for immigration sanity, cannot give a speech without several times repeating that immigration restriction “has nothing to do with race.” For conservatives (and not only neo-conservatives) nothing ever has anything to do with race. All other subjects are related to one another, but race sits way off in a corner, unrelated to anything else. Robertson is spot-on in describing such behavior as “pussyfooting.” Yet race is everything to our enemies, and a refusal to deal with it is a refusal to fight them. As Robertson puts it, “being attacked as a race, we have no choice but to defend ourselves as a race.”

Here’s another quote from The Dispossessed Majority on the need to recreate community for our people:

If the mind lives alone, if the mind tries to survive on its own waste, it becomes disordered. Sanity is a function of purpose. Remove the spiritual props, the cultural reinforcements, the time-tested morale builders, the four-dimensional insurance of family, race, nation and church, and the delicate balance of the human mentality can easily crack.

Perhaps the foremost task of nationalism at the present time is to provide alternative socialization for European Americans who feel lost in an alienating, disintegrative multicultural society.

This is also essential for the further development of Western culture, as the author recognizes in his remarkable chapter on the dissolution of art. The arts are pre-eminently an expression of culture. Culture, in turn, may be defined as the way a particular people sharing a territory attribute significance to the brute facts of the world around them, typically by means of images and symbolism. In Richard Weaver’s words, culture “is a shared thing, which cannot exist without consensus; the members of a culture are in a manner of speaking communicants of that culture.” This implies a principle of exclusion, or discrimination, against what does not fit into its symbolic system as well as those who stand outside it. The notion of an entirely open multicultural carnival of all possible identities is self-contradictory and destructive of real culture.

The takeover of American literature by hostile minorities, fittingly symbolized by Susan Sontag’s recent reprinting by the Library of America, is an injustice to majority members, serving to alienate majority members from their own culture. It has also made alienation itself—often nothing more than the alienation the minority artist feels amid majority culture—almost the principle subject of twentieth-century literature. The idea of the bard as depositor of folk memory seems hopelessly passé today. If we ever get around to creating our own institutions of learning, as I hope we shall do, this is something we should try to recover.

Robertson is also clear on the “two sets of scales” strategy of our racial competitors, noting, e.g., that while Jews have proportionally far more clubs and organizations than any other population group, they have long waged a campaign to force non-Jewish clubs to admit them. He understands that the liberalism of such groups is not the principled stance of majority “old believers,” but an opportunistic mask dropped as soon as it has outlived its usefulness. Thus, the minority liberals who used to champion free speech (when it was a matter of peddling their own products) are the same people who are now leading the movement to outlaw so-called hate speech.

The problem is compounded when the races differ markedly in capacity. Forcing less accomplished races with simple cultures to live and work beside races which have built up a complex set of institutions over many centuries is a perfect recipe for resentment, unhappiness, and friction. There is no justification whatsoever for resigning the moral high ground to integrationists on the basis of their supposed “good intentions.” In the words of Sam Francis, “federal decentralization and territorial separation should be recognized as legitimate and humane means of preventing and resolving divisive ethnic and racial conflicts.” This is, in fact, the way forward proposed by Wilmot Robertson in his later and more programmatic work, The Ethnostate.