After any setback, it is perfectly natural and proper to reassess one’s tactics and goals. It is, after all, a winning attitude after a loss to blame oneself and not one’s enemies.
When mixed martial artist Conor McGregor was stopped in the second round at UFC 196 by Nate Diaz in March 2016, he didn’t ascribe his defeat to the superiority of his opponent but to his own lack of efficiency in maintaining his stamina. A mistake, to be certain, but something that can be corrected. Sure enough, when the pair met five months later at UFC 202, McGregor had made the appropriate adjustments and won a majority decision.
In many ways, the fallout after the August 12 Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville was a setback for the Right. After a young man plowed his automobile into a crowd of hostile (and armed) counter-protestors, killing one and injuring nineteen, our corporate elites decided to act en masse in shutting the Right down. We don’t need to recapitulate all the details here. Suffice to say, it has now become much more difficult for the Right to maintain an Internet presence, to raise money, and to meet and organize. Where before the Right was operating comfortably below the radar, now it is definitely above it, exposed and vulnerable to attack.
There are two ways for the Right to address this setback, both of which are valid. One is to point a finger outward, and the other inward.
The outward finger is easy because we have Truth and unanimity going for us. Our corporate and media elites are hypocritical. They most certainly do hold the Right to a higher standard than they do the Left. They also judge whites on a higher moral plane than they do non-whites. How else to explain the relative lack of blowback after the objectively greater violence and hatred brought to bear by the antifa, Black Lives Matter, and Muslim terrorists in the recent past? Jared Taylor makes this point quite cogently, and I am sure there is not a nickel’s worth of difference among anyone on the Right as to where we stand on this.
We should never stop beating this drum, even if there are few short-term gains. For one, it costs us nothing to hold the enemy to their own standards, as Saul Alinsky insists we should do. Secondly, the Truth, when argued competently and tirelessly in a free society, has a way of seeping into people’s minds over the long haul and changing perspectives. Finally, this is a tack that most disinterested observers will also be compelled to follow. For example, the Ace of Spades is no white identitarian, but after Charlottesville, he was making essentially the same arguments as Mr. Taylor.
After UFC 196, Conor McGregor could not point that outward finger, because Nick Diaz hadn’t cheated and the referee had enforced the rules equitably. At Charlottesville, the enemies of the Right did cheat – showing up without a permit and employing all sorts of nasty weapons. And the referees were anything but equitable. The Charlottesville authorities failed to provide Unite the Right with appropriate police protection, and the media almost completely ignored all the violence and hatred that was heaped upon them.
Yes, one can say that life isn’t fair and we shouldn’t whine about it. On the other hand, we all have rights bestowed to us by God and elaborated in the US Constitution. If a violation of these rights is not cause to point that outward finger, then what is? And if we don’t point that finger now, then how much harder will it be for our children to do it? Or theirs?
The inward finger, however, is difficult to point, because this is where the re-branding comes in. It requires honest reflection upon oneself, and people often have difficulty remaining objective when assessing themselves. What did the Right do wrong? What could we have done differently? How can we avoid something similar in the future? These are all good, necessary questions. The most important ones, however, are, “Do we alter our tactics?” and “Do we alter our goals?”
For the first question, the answer is clearly yes. Tactics should always be reassessed after a setback. Essentially, I agree with Greg Johnson when he says that the Right was not morally culpable for Charlottesville, but adjustments should be made. In this case, I believe I can, off the cuff, make a decent list of rules the Right should follow in the future:
- No Nazi and Ku Klux Klan iconography. Why refight old wars? Better to stay clean of this and hit the Left hard every time it sports the hammer and sickle.
- No Roman salutes. These are just stupid because they provide our enemies with easy anti-Rightist propaganda. They should have to work hard for their propaganda. Anyone on the Right caught raising his arm in this manner deserves to be memed into irrelevance.
- No saying the word “hail.” See Rule #2 above, unless talking about precipitation.
- No nighttime torchlight vigils. These appear vaguely threatening to the very people the Right needs to attract. Why would a large group of people congregate at night with torches (as opposed to flashlights) unless they were up to something? That’s how it seems to people not in the know, anyway. And didn’t the Ku Klux Klan come riding to the rescue bearing torches in The Birth of a Nation? They did in the poster, at least. So, for that, see Rule #1.
- No marching in the streets and chanting. Sorry, this is just creepy.
- No announcing public rallies months or weeks in advance. Common sense here. Why give the enemy time to prepare?
One tactic that perhaps we should also call into question is resorting to overt racism, nasty slurs, and overall obstreperousness. There are quite a few people on the Right who engage in this kind of behavior, especially trolls in comments sections. People like this made it difficult to sell the Alt Right as a serious movement before Charlottesville, and now they’re even more of an embarrassment. Remember, Cloudflare CEO Matthew Prince, the one who defended providing service to ISIS, decided to cancel service to The Daily Stormer because he felt its proprietor, Andrew Anglin, was an “asshole.” Had Anglin not been such an “asshole,” the logic goes, then Cloudflare would have stood by the Stormer and all would have been well.
I agree with this, to a point. It’s always better to be classy than not. But regardless of what happened at Charlottesville, I don’t think policing this kind of thing should be a top priority for anyone on the Right for two reasons. One, if the French Revolution taught us anything, it’s that the definition of “asshole” always changes. Today, it’s Andrew Anglin and tomorrow it could be Jared Taylor who, by any objective measure, is the epitome of class. In fact, many corporate entities such as PayPal and YouTube have gone after Taylor and American Renaissance in the wake of Charlottesville. So Anglin and Taylor are both victims, despite being very different people. The only thing separating these two on Prince’s assholometer is time, which, as Steve Miller has pointed out, keeps on slipping into the future.
As they say, “If we’re gonna do the time, we might as well do the crime.” If being a class act is no defense against our corporate elites, then what motivation do people on the Right have to act classy?
The second reason I would eschew making hay over the mean-spirited antics of people like Anglin and the bile spewed on the Internet by white racist trolls is that my Irish is up (and I’m not Irish). It’s been up basically since 9/11 and has yet to go down. The Left does precious little to bring its cretins to heel (not that Andrew Anglin is a cretin, mind you), so why should we? They award talk shows on national television to spiteful pinheads like Al Sharpton and Bill Maher, they give Academy Awards to anti-white bigots like Michael Moore, they provide platforms for people to say and write the most overtly racist things about white people, they look the other way whenever blacks murderously misbehave as they always do, they continually obfuscate the obvious link between the Qur’an and militant Islam, they do everything in their pernicious power to accelerate the white majority’s decline in America, and then they turn around and have the unmitigated gall to lecture us about how we behave on the Internet.
No. In this case, Charlottesville has changed nothing. The Left needs to get its dilapidated house in order first. Then and only then can we talk about Andrew Anglin.
Another tactic to reconsider is distancing ourselves from the term “Alt Right.” Has the Alt Right brand been irreparably damaged by Charlottesville? Based on the setbacks we’ve faced, I can appreciate arguments saying it has. However, jettisoning a brand we were all more or less happy with a month ago because of one incident has two unfortunate consequences. One, it makes us seem flaky. Suppose we adopt a new brand, say, ‘the Alt Alt Right,’ and then another incident happens. Are we then going to enter Spinal Tap mode and rebrand again? At what point should we stop rebranding every time we face a setback?
The second consequence, I’m sure, is something few wish to discuss. If pundits and leaders on the Right abandon the Alt Right brand all at once, they will be hanging Richard Spencer out to dry. As one of the proprietors of AltRight.com and the putative coiner of the term, Spencer is about as hitched to the Alt Right brand as Al Gore is to anthropomorphic global warming. Most likely he is going to sink or swim with that ship. Do we really want to steer our flotilla away from his to facilitate his eventual encounter with Davey Jones? I’m sure our enemies on the Left would love it if we did. That is certainly the easiest path to defeat, dividing ourselves before the enemy steps in to conquer us.
On the other hand, would the Right indeed be better off without Spencer? Without really knowing the man, I can’t say for sure. But I have very strong doubts it would be. I have heard people complain about Spencer’s tactical blunders and personality flaws, and I am sure there’s a lot of truth in that. However, here we have a person who has made himself unemployable and put himself in constant danger in order to quite visibly lead a dissident movement against powerful forces which would gladly ruin him and his family. How many of us have the stones to sign up for something like that? I don’t. Therefore I have no desire to pull a Brutus and stick a shiv in his ribs. Like him or not, I say the Right is stuck with Richard Spencer, and our fortunes are to a great extent married to his. So we might as well make the most of it.
And of the people who do have the stones to do what Spencer does, I am sure that quite a few them nurse some precious egos, comb their hair in the mirror three times a day, and get titillated every time they hear themselves speak. Could it be any other way? Asking such a person not to be even a little bit of a prima donna is sort of like asking a basketball player not to be tall.
These are a few things we should all consider before re-branding. From my perspective, I think that, with a few exceptions, people on the Right should look at other people on the Right that they don’t like and say, “Yeah, he may be a jerk. But he’s our jerk.”
Finally, there’s rethinking the Right’s attachment to race realism and White Nationalism, that is, the very goals which keep us together. The first, for me, is an absolute non-starter. Blowing off racial differences is sort of like blowing off the science of biology. One of the strengths of the Right is that we base our movement in Truth, Truth which has the last, best arbiter of human behavior behind it: the human genome. After this, there is no argument.
Of course, the Left will always raise the point that accepting racial differences will inevitably lead to accepting political differences according to race. This is their ironically named bête noir and (to be fair) a valid point. Well, guess what? The Right has an answer to that, too: ethnonationalism. If non-whites are so petrified of big, bad whitey taking away their opportunities at the ballot box or making them use their own toilets and water fountains, they’re more than welcome to go back where they came from or form their own nations, separate from ours.
This is, in effect, White Nationalism. Not white supremacy. White Nationalism. If Charlottesville inspires the Right to never-the-twain these two things even more than it already does, fantastic. But if we soften our stance on White Nationalism even a wee bit after a debacle like Charlottesville, we’ll be bowing down to the beast and extinguishing our fundamental reasons for existing as political creatures to begin with. We have to remember that most non-whites will never accept an openly race realist white person in any mainstream culture to which they have access. The greater they grow in numbers, the more they will insist on one hundred percent political correctness from white people. White advocacy in a multi-racial world which includes black advocates, Hispanic advocates, and the like is doomed to fail. Whites are the most successful race of people there ever was. That’s simply the truth. It’s also the fly in the ointment of races that presume to be equal with whites. Having racially-aware whites around threatens this presumption of equality (or POE, as I call it), and so non-whites will try to eradicate this racial awareness at all costs (and whites along with it, if need be).
This is the future we face if white advocacy is not accompanied by realistic plans of White Nationalism, and a thousand Charlottesvilles are not going to change that. On the other hand, if White Nationalism sounds too off-putting in post-Charlottesville America and we want to call it something else, fine. We can dub it “White Separatism” or “Euro-Self-Determination,” or something deliberately hideous like “Oikophilic Caucasoidic Homogenistic Indigenism” that even our enemies would not be able to utter without laughing.
(Seriously, who could possibly be afraid of something called “Oikophilic Caucasoidic Homogenistic Indigenism,” or its inevitable goofy-sounding acronym, OCHI?)
If this is the limit of our rebranding, then I have no objections. However, I will say that unless the Alt Alt Whatever Right includes in its message heartfelt calls to racial pride and identity, and avoids the cultural sickness Greg Johnson describes as “ironism,” it will likely fail. Saying we need to form a spin-off nation of white people is not enough. Instead, we need to give white people reasons to want to join it and inspire them to do great things. And we need to impress upon non-whites that without whites doing great things, the world will soon be a lot less great.
For inspiration of this kind, I believe we can do no better than the Funeral Oration spoken by Pericles in the classic History of the Peloponnesian War by Thucydides. He was speaking about Athens, but for our purposes he could have been talking about Europe or America. For just a moment, let’s pretend that he was:
Fix your eyes on the greatness of Athens as you have it before you day by day, fall in love with her, and when you feel her great, remember that this greatness was won by men with courage, with knowledge of their duty, and with a sense of honour in action, who, if they failed in any ordeal, disdained to deprive the city of their services, but sacrificed their lives as the best offerings on her behalf. So they gave their bodies to the commonwealth and received, each for his own memory, praise that will never die, and with it the grandest of all sepulchers, not that in which their mortal bones are laid, but a home in the minds of men, where their glory remains fresh to stir to speech or action as the occasion comes by.