Left or Right – The Utopian Nightmare

In contemporary political discourse, the terms left and right are thrown around so often that they’ve nearly degraded to the point of being insubstantial memes.  “Right-Wing Extremists” has been a term swung like a baseball bat by the media and by academics since the New Left rose to prominence in the sixties, and it was an amusing enough rhetorical cudgel given the fact that almost none of the terrorist acts committed by Americans during those chaotic decades were even remotely ‘right-wing’ no matter how you defined it.  “The Left,” on the other hand, has become a lovable boogieman used by alt-media commentators since the internet became a usable media platform, but it’s devolved to resembling a word that simply means whatever I don’t like. Continue reading “Left or Right – The Utopian Nightmare”

Chinese Catholicism

Last year, it came to be announced that Pope Francis had begun talking with the communist Chinese government over the negotiation of the Church’s presence in the country.  A bit of background: Catholics in China have a tendency to disappear, but sometimes they’re merely imprisoned for life on any number of possible charges.  Religion is not a thing generally looked upon favorably in the PRC, though Xi Jingping’s government does play its understandable favorites; Buddhism and Taoism enjoy a relatively low level of antagonism from the authorities, while just about everyone else could be under threat of  spending their lives behind bars if they aren’t completely cooperative with their secular masters. Continue reading “Chinese Catholicism”

The Demon in Democracy (Ryszard Legutko – 2016, Encounter Books)

Escaping from Soviet rule in Poland during the 1970s, Ryszard Legutko landed in the liberalized sphere of NATO-defended Europe only to have a startling and somewhat horrifying discovery: many proponents of the political system he had just been received by—liberal democracy—were sympathetic, if not outright favorable, to the cripplingly despotic communist system best characterized by the Soviet regime.  It was not, he admits in his introduction to The Demon in Democracy: Totalitarian Temptations in Free Societies, something that necessarily occurred to him immediately.  But even within the first few years of his freedom, he had recognized tendencies among his Western colleagues to defend aspects of the system that he had risked his livelihood escaping from. Continue reading “The Demon in Democracy (Ryszard Legutko – 2016, Encounter Books)”

Political Centrism Is Not A Thing

“Nah, dude, I’m a centrist.”  The unamusing smugness of the statement belched out of your friend’s lips is enough to put anyone who’s invested an inkling of time into researching the topics at hand into a state of simmering rage.  “Everything in moderation.  Live and let live.  It is what it is.”  This is the type of person, you remind yourself, that smokes pot while tripping on psilocybin and compares it to religious experiences he admits to have never actually had.  This is the type of person, you remind yourself, who has trouble reading books and didn’t finish high school, smells of patchouli and marijuana, and claims to be “his own kind of Buddhist,” though he doesn’t seem to know what the eightfold path is when you ask about it.  This is the type of person, you remind yourself, that you shouldn’t be discussing politics with. Continue reading “Political Centrism Is Not A Thing”

Conservatism and Its Discontents

The American Right has never been the most organized crowd around.  Uniting a broad demographic of laymen, pundits, politicians, and intellectuals, the term has stood as a sort of catch-all for everything that isn’t expressed in the left’s platform.  That’s how “paleo-conservatives” like Pat Buchanan are grouped under the same wing as neocons like John McCain and Bill Kristol, while all three of them supposedly share platform space with libertarians.  Of course, in reality, if leftism wasn’t as cancerous, insane, and obvious as it is today, these three groups would probably be their own separate political parties.  And if the 2016 election is any indication, that might now just be possible. Continue reading “Conservatism and Its Discontents”

MGTOW, Family, and the Myth of the Individual

There’s been a lot of talk in the past few years about the anti-feminist response movement glibly dubbed Men Go Their Own Way (MGTOW).  Presumably, much like early feminism attempted to proclaim, the self-proclaimed members of MGTOW want nothing more than to simply be left alone and judged according to their own merits.  An admirable enough cause, though misguided and, I think, an extension of the very problem that it seems to try to address. Continue reading “MGTOW, Family, and the Myth of the Individual”

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