Richard Hanania is a rising star among Right-wing intellectuals. He has a J.D. from the University of Chicago and a Ph.D. in political science from UCLA. He first came to national attention in 2015 with an op-ed in The Washington Post about why Donald Trump was right not to apologize for his controversial remarks. (This is ironic, given recent events.) Hanania has gone on to publish at The Wall Street Journal, National Review, Quillette, The American Conservative, Reason, and Palladium Magazine. He was also a guest on Tucker Carlson Tonight. His book The Origins of Woke will be published this fall by HarperCollins. Hanania also runs a non-profit called the Center for the Study of Partisanship and Ideology from which he has drawn more than $100,000/year. But Hanania’s primary platforms are Substack and Twitter, where he has substantial audiences.
I first took notice of Hanania in 2020. I was never a fan. He struck me as a libertarian who occasionally hinted at race realism, but then retreated to color-blind meritocracy and dark classical liberal mutterings about the dangers of collectivism and social engineering. I simply have no time for such foolishness. The white race is dying, largely through social engineering, and color-blind meritocracy or praying to the “invisible hand” or “spontaneous order” will not save us. We need white collectivism, state power, and pro-white social engineering.
But an astonishingly high percentage of American White Nationalists are ex-libertarians, so I took out a free subscription to Hanania’s Substack to monitor him. Earlier this year, Hanania published an article entitled “Diversity Really is Our Strength,” subtitled “Immigration destroys social cohesion. Good.” He has also inveighed against online anonymity. (Again, ironic, given recent events.) Gradually, I began to hate him.
It turns out, though, that Richard Hanania and I go way back, and I didn’t even know it. From 2009 to 2011, I published Hanania under the pen name Richard Hoste, first at TOQ Online and then at Counter-Currents. Hoste was a joy to work with. He was intelligent, versatile, prolific, wrote well, had interesting insights, and was enthusiastic about exploring ideas. He was also a prompt correspondent and never threw diva fits over editing.
Hoste’s views on eugenics were too illiberal for my tastes. But he was 100% sound on the two litmus issues for writing for TOQ Online: He was a race realist, meaning that he believed in biological racial differences, and he was awake to the Jewish question. For instance, Hoste begins his essay “The Case for Group Selection: Its Deniers” with the words, “I’m not one to be suspicious of an intellectual just because he happens to be Jewish. But Emory University’s Melvin Konner seems to be a character straight out of [Kevin MacDonald’s] The Culture of Critique.”
At some point, I became aware that Hoste was a Palestinian Arab, but that did not alter the fact that he identified as a white man and wrote in defense of white interests. At a certain point, Hoste stopped writing because he wanted to focus on graduate school. I was sure he would do well. But I never heard from him again, not even a postcard.
Richard Hanania is not the only Counter-Currents alumnus to have an illustrious career as a more mainstream public intellectual. But he is the only one to have been doxed. Hanania began writing for Richard Spencer’s AlternativeRight.com webzine in 2010. Spencer chose to use a third-party platform called Disqus for comments. In 2017 Disqus was hacked, and the emails and passwords of its clients were revealed. Antifa used Hoste’s Disqus profile to reveal his identity.
AlternativeRight.com was not the only site in our sphere to use Disqus. It was also adopted by TRS and Radix Journal. (Readers asked me to adopt Disqus at Counter-Currents, but I declined because it seemed an obvious security risk. I personally used it at other sites because I self-doxed a long time ago.)
Of course, I would never take the word of an antifa “journalist” that Hoste and Hanania are the same man. But Richard Hanania has now confirmed that he was Richard Hoste in an article entitled, “Why I Used to Suck, and (Hopefully) No Longer Do.” Actually, Richard Hoste was quite based. But Richard Hanania sucked big time, and this article only makes matters worse.
My first question is: Was Hanania lying about his purported “academic research” which showed that refusing to back down from controversial statements is a good strategy in garnering public approval? If it is true, why did Hanania not follow his own research?
Hanania characterizes the views he published at Counter-Currents and similar platforms as “repugnant” and renounces them. Beyond that, he says that he was not entirely in earnest. He was “trolling.”
Sorry, but I am not buying it. Trolls post one-liners on social media. They do not read thousands of pages of densely-written academic works and write carefully-crafted multi-thousand-word reviews.
Richard Hanania is asking us to believe that the things he wrote under a pen name at White Nationalist and human biodiversity sites, including endorsing ideas from Kevin MacDonald’s The Culture of Critique, were not entirely in earnest, but that the more moderate and socially acceptable things he wrote under his own name — when he was both subject to cancellation and rewarded with money and status — are actually honest and sincere. Only a fool would believe that.
The most charitable interpretation of Richard Hanania’s career trajectory is that he remained race-wise and Jew-wise, but edged up to the mainstream to inject good ideas and shift the Overton window.
He was wildly successful. Hanania is not just an intelligent and energetic writer. He’s also an entrepreneur. He had a good thing going. So, when his real views were revealed, he panicked, cucked, and doubled down on the classical liberal, color-blind meritocracy cover.
It is a depressingly old pattern: smart libertarian and conservative nerds start noticing collectives, especially Jews and blacks, but as soon as there is a hint of pushback, they say, “But I treat everyone as an individual.” Basically, they realize that this a world of clashing tribes, in which individualism is a sucker’s game. Then they get scared — because they have no tribe to protect them — and signal to the enemy tribes (almost always Jews), “I’m an individualist, so even though I notice collectives, I won’t act on that knowledge. So you don’t have to destroy me. You can just play me for a sucker.”
I wish that Richard Hanania had not behaved in such a dishonorable way. There’s more to this struggle than spreading ideas. There is also a moral component, and not just moral ideas but moral character. The Right has the truth on our side. But we’ve always had the truth on our side. We lose not for lack of truth, but for lack of courage. Conservatives and libertarians have many good ideas. But they have weak guts. By cucking under pressure, Hanania reinforces the bourgeois cowardice that allows crazed Leftist fanatics to keep winning, even though they are intellectually bankrupt.
Truth alone will not set us free. All the truth in the world will change nothing if men lack the courage to stand by it.
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