There have been some positive trends lately which I’ve noticed. Skyaugusta has started working on the ‘Southern Reactionary’ concept, with a particular focus on the history and culture of the southern US.
Similarly, Neocolonial (whom I believe is in New Zealand) is working on applying general ideas from neoreaction (which derives from the practice of digging-up of old books and censored knowledge) to the particular political situation of rural and remote areas. [ED: He’s actually in Tasmania.]
Specialization and subsidiarity are the best ways to defuse needless competition and conflict. It also makes the political phenomenon more challenging for outsiders to grasp, because it occludes more of the connections where they might be any. Certain local or specialized applications of the same body of thought can also serve as better cover than operating under the ‘neoreactionary’ brand.
There are certainly some others which I’m missing. There’s a lively South Slavic contingent of both expatriates and natives over there, along with some Canadians in different regions, but they tend to speak in the similar Anglo-Universal mode that most of the rest of us do.
The phenomenon of the manosphere, which should be familiar to most of you, is a good demonstration of this. Pick up artists selling scripts for seducing women who hang around in bars is a saturated market that looks like a power law curve, with a few big names controlling the market, and then countless smaller ones trying and failing to replicate the success of the people at the top.
To be at all useful, these people have to differentiate what they do for people, specialize their knowledge, and pick an area which isn’t over-saturated with producers. This piece on specialization, SEO, and the manosphere by Thumotic, who occasionally comments and links to this blog, is a good primer.
The previous two grafs are basic Adam Smith, but most people who read the theory don’t understand how to apply it in life, so it bears some repeating.
Market control tends to have a power law distribution. When you see a mature market, unless you can find a critical flaw in the market leader that you can exploit and disrupt, you want to carve off a slice possessed by the market leader and make it belong to you and your team. Anything else, and you’re probably fighting over scraps with other professional scrappers.
This illustrates the importance of specialization, relevance, and localization. If you can differentiate what you’re writing about and doing from what others are doing, you become more useful to the community writ small and the community writ large. It’s a lot easier to get a grasp on a small area of knowledge or physical territory than it is to try to tackle the whole of everything.
Mitosis gets the job done. The more that people try to create an enormous, undifferentiated internet cult, the less functional that that cult becomes, and the more that people focus on power jostling over actually making any substantive progress in either understanding or application. This also makes it a whole lot simpler to form functional hierarchies. It’s pointless to try to stop the power jostling, because that’s what men do.
Bob Wallace says
Try ‘I’ll Take my Stand,’ a book about the Southern Agrarians.
I’ll check it out.
Isn’t Thumotic a social justice warrior, though? Why would he be linking here? Or do I have him confused with someone else?
You have him confused with another guy
Ah, guess you’re right, I was thinking of Tuthmosis.
https://twitter.com/FreedomTwenty5 — this guy
You must admit, having two different writers in the “manosphere” named Tuthmotic and Tuthmosis, one of whom is an SJW and one of whom is anti-SJW, is a bit weird.
Just for fun, let’s pretend that they’re reincarnated Egyptian princelings.
Yup, Tuthmosis is a Roosh Forum mod (and Pharaoh) while my blog Thumotic is taken from a Greek word meaning spirited-ness/life force.
HD, recommend you also check out this older post:
Many of the same ideas as you express here.
I almost certainly read this when you posted it, but didn’t recall it the other week when I wrote this. Still a good post.
Tasmania rather than New Zealand, but I suspect that what I’m working on would be reasonably transferable there.
But your general point is quite valid. Neo reaction as such is quite insubstantial at the moment, in that there are no instantiations of its work. So… that’s what I’m trying to achieve, in my own little corner of the world.
Thanks for the correction. I’ve updated the post to reflect your actual location.
Your ideas could have broader applications outside the region — looking forward to reading more of your thoughts and reports on your work.
Mark Minter says
I think maybe the manosphere is a little more than just “long tail” niche. Maybe so in a very big picture but as an example of a “local” virtual community it is pretty biggish.
It is one of the few examples of some internet community that is biologically created and reinforced. And it certainly is a creation of modernism and “development”. As industrial development creates both a surplus and removes male strength or personality as a benefit in jobs then the provisioning benefit that low sexual status males is lessened. And the old “hypergamy” female strategy of a lesser male for provisioning with a back door higher status male for genes is co-opted where the corporation or government follows that provisioning male role and frees the woman to chase high sexual status genes.
So theoretically that could eliminate up to 50% or even more males from sexual access.
And they are really pissed off about it.
So there is a pretty large pool of men that the skilled outrage content provider can manipulate for cash and prizes. But as you say, in even a niche, there is a long tail rule, 80% goes to 20% of the providers and then the other 80% of the providers scrap over the remaining 20% of the audience.
You could even say that NRx is part of that crumb structure. Most men get here via the manosphere and it is arguable that NRx is a niche or at least a castoff spillover of men that didn’t really find what they wanted, in a deeper intellectual sense, in the manosphere.
Today I hungrily scour Neorx aggregation link pages and read whatever is posted. I used to be that may about viva la manosphere or manosphere.com. Now I maybe look at those manosphere link pages every few days, maybe, and usually it is a quick trip through them. Most of the content is junk, and even the bigger writers are just rehashing old tired and worn themes. Yeah Yeah Bitches Suck. Yeah Yeah I hate Feminists. Yeah Yeah American girls are awful.
In all things internet, content rules. If you have good content and continue to produce it, then you will probably end up with a readership. It is true that the originators that continue to produce functional content have significant awareness advantage. A tweet said if he wanted to be a big cheese in Nrx then he should go back in time using a time machine and start blogging. The manosphere is the same. And the entrenched powers can also use their position to bludgeon up and coming writers. But you cannot keep good content down.
But one of the reasons no competing individuals have come to bear is the nature of that community. It is community of the aggrieved. It is a community of losers, at least in a sexual sense. And often sexual losers can be life losers and lack the very skills and personality traits that would allow someone to create a brand that can push its way into prominence.
And the community has the issue that the more capable men will probably learn what it teaches then “graduate”, get into a functional relationship, and then the screaming of that community is no longer relevant to him. So the better men leave, grow up, whatever. The losers stay behind and scream.
I would be interested in further discussions of the idea of Nrx localities, from a standpoint of the intellectual content and values of this community.
Right now I am wondering if neorx is just a great way to pass time, kind of an intellectual masturbation. So how does it become more actionable.
The manosphere has some “actionability” because it can effect the culture via the choices of individual men in how they act with and view women. It has the ability to instill values that are relevant to the street. NeoRx is on a higher plane and less actionable. It could supply “swing” voters. It can affect the greater trend of conservatism. But other than it, it is little relevance outside of the “text” community. It was as you said in the Ascending the Tower piece. One Rush Limbaugh is equal to 10000 Russ Douthats. And we are even less relevant.
Sure. Fortunately, the ‘text’ community also includes most of the smartest, wealthiest, and most capable segments of society, such that they still exist. If you’re trying to get asses in the voting booth, or sell 1,000,000 eBooks, the message needs to be watered down to a sufficiently large common denominator.
So far, NRx is a community of writers and readers. There are some local off-shoots here and there that are informal dining clubs. There’s a lot that’s actionable in certain areas of thought — in terms of how you have your children educated, where you choose to live, how you choose to engage with politics, how you structure a company, what you read, what religious affiliation you go with, how you treat women, which charities you donate to, what your approach to personal health is, and so on and so forth.
All of those beliefs shape many weighty decisions in the life of a man.
If the manosphere has a problem, it’s that it’s a little too unconcerned with the future — it tends to be hedonistic when it’s not entirely nihilistic. More thoughtful people tend to be at least a little concerned with posterity.
I’m not as concerned about differentiating from the manoshphere as some people are. I think overall I would rather that a young man be subscribing to a manosphere blog than reading GQ or Esquire — or watching SpikeTV. Some will be somewhat damaged, but most will not be as bad for wear as they would have been in the hands of the left.
Kate Minter says
I have become somewhat narrow-minded about all of this 🙂
If I have clothes to donate, they go to the local thrift shop. Why would I give free clothes to people outside my own town?
If I have necessities to buy, I buy them at the local grocery store. Why would I spend money for bread, milk, and toilet paper to benefit someone outside of my town?
If I have knowledge to share, I share it with my students and daughter. Why would I spend time educating people who will not populate my town?
(If one realizes one can’t change the world, it means one gave it a good effort.)
The world is very very big, but most Americans these days would rather pretend to save the world than do anything to make their neighborhood a better place.
Kate Minter says
Yes, I have certainly fallen into that mistake before. Now the world is rarely bigger than my living room. It is selfish to the extent that putting your own oxygen mask on first is selfish.
Mr. Dampier, thank you for the mention, I am honored.
I agree with your thoughts on specialization. Many calling themselves NRx, it seems to me, were unfortunately born and raised immersed in modernity- that is, totally detached from any traditional thedishness. NRx is doing good work in helping them realize what has been lost, but they tend to assume that thedishness is dead for everyone in the West. This is not so. Whatever form the Reaction takes on the ground, it will surely vary in character between, say, Australia and New England. Much of what I have to say about Southern Reaction will undoubtedly be of little or no use to Reactionaries in California, or England.
Whether NRx ends up defining itself as a school of thought, or some kind of coordinating body, or what-have-you, it would do well to foster on the ground Reactionary groups specific to each thede in the West, which can optimize local efforts to fight Progressivism and prepare for the post-Prog era. Two areas where I think there is fertile ground for growth in the somewhat near future is New England Reaction and, perhaps surprisingly, AfroReaction.
Reaction is the effort to return society to an organic body by removing the plastic virus of Leftism. Naturally, each of these bodies will vary according to genetics, history, surroundings, etc. Despite the efforts of the Leftist Establishment, much of what makes our peoples distinct still exists. The sooner Reactionaries can capitalize on this fact, the easier it will be to conserve what little we have left against modernity and Progressivism.
It’d be a bit goofy for someone like me, with some roots going back to the Plymouth settlers, to pretend to be able to speak for the Southern tradition.
I don’t really understand the idea that you can put ‘traditionalist’ in your twitter bio and then ignore any actually extant traditions that you’re supposed to be upholding or evolving out of. It reminds me a little bit of the ‘folk music’ of Joan Baez and Bob Dylan — folksy without actually being connected to what was actually there.
I would rather encourage this sort of tendency, which pulls from the actual historical and cultural record. The more specific that is to the territory, the better.
Oh! Almost forgot. I second the recommendation of “I’ll Take My Stand” by Twelve Southerners. In my opinion, it is The Great Contribution to reactionary thought to come out of 20th Century United States. If it’s not NRx canon, then it should be.
Bob Wallace says
Certain people people have swallowed some of the more ridiculous concepts in the Manosphere fish, hook, line, sinker, rod, reel and boat (‘alphas’ for genes, ‘betas’ for ‘provisioning’) but they have no idea what was written in the Bible about men and women, or what Plato and Aristotle wrote, or Aquinas, or Augustine…or anyone else. Just silly, simplistic ideas a smart 12-year-old could see through.
This has actually been a recurring topic on the Jackal Hour. The idea is to emulate fraternal organizations, similar to your post on the Thomas Carlyle society for reactionaries.
The trouble is ofc working on using mythology instead of ideology and framing something that can be fun and fulfilling for men that can still get them in positions to get laid.
NRx is about having fun and getting laid?
Those in the Midwest or Upland South region would do well to read Wendell Berry of Kentucky as a source on localism and regionalism generally, and for a portrait of the pre-World War Two, pre-Mass Media world of the rural agricultural community.
Berry is a committed Christian, but of a loose Protestant variety, and his views on conservation and related topics often lump him into the “progressive” category on many issues. Thus his work is often missed by anyone who starts on the mainstream Right and moves rightward.
He consistently takes the long view of community and society — which puts him in opposition to “mass” or “industrial” anything — and is firmly rooted in small-t tradition.
I think his writing is invaluable from an anti-modernist perspective, if not wholly reactionary.
His fiction and nonfiction provides an essential picture of what a “traditional, organic life and community” actually looks like in practice, and within living memory.
It is also worth plugging “Front Porch Republic” (http://www.frontporchrepublic.com), a project now edited by Nrx fellow-traveler @j_arthur_bloom.
I’ve been to three conferences, and the rooms are full of intelligent young people — many traditionalists, Catholics — attractive, smartly dressed, desperate for a road map toward sanity that involves traditionalism in everything from architecture to agriculture to bow-ties.
Of course, many of the professors who give the lectures at these conferences sound like cuckolded husbands because they can’t let go of their tenure or their dead idols “Jeffersonian Democracy just hasn’t been adequately TRIED YET!”, “Sure the University is dead and promotes polyamory, but this new Christian exgesis on Shakespeare I produced just MAY bring it back”.
And of course, the whole thing is ripe for entryism by kids who are attracted by the faggy bow-ties.
But the bulk of these kids know they are in enemy territory (the university) and simply need a voice of reason (or, better yet, Moldbug) to push them rightwards.
I don’t know what the fuck I’d call my work: nerd reaction? Either way, my aim is to find the white male nerd, the sci-fi, video game, tabletop game nerd and help instill reaction in him. My recommended reading list on TRV tries to appeal to that by playing on nerd hobbies and personalities: low-pressure, informal communities where socialization is at the utmost easiest, and information easily digestible to consume en masse rather than requiring rigorous study and specialization. The goal is not to create high-level reactionary thinkers, but rather to simply subvert the growing influence of progressivism in nerd culture.
There’s certainly a lot of room for that — in living memory, nerds as a class were pretty right wing. It’s only as their hobbies have risen in status a little bit that the ideological pressure has started hitting them harder. Plus, a lot of them are educated, so they become pozzed by default.
Poz has always been around in nerd culture, even before it got big. Bizarre sexual deviance in nerd culture was not uncommon, and the rise of the internet made it even worse. Unfortunately, the furries and bronies are a monster of our creation. Last week’s Daily Shoah also provided plenty of evidence of unconscious poz.
I think in general, nerd culture isn’t very conscious of political theory. The fact that #GamerGate mistakenly touts itself out as “apolitical” should be proof in of itself. Until the last decade or so when the money started rolling in, nerd culture seemed to see itself as existing in a vacuum. The current fracture in the communities is the result of a collective awakening, forcing battle lines to be drawn.