The Three No’s, Or Towards a Explanation of Dialectics, Part II

Dearest Friends,

It’s time to take you to my no-no place.

The Three No’s:
1. No Culture By Steam
2. No Politics By Memes
3. No Fulfillment of the Dream

No Culture By Steam
In a near-off past, fools dreamed of a world-computer that could compute all the correct decisions men would make. It is the dream of every technocrat. This is the government-by-steam, a contraption to rule men. But men are not automatons, so to make the government-by-steam, you must have men-by-steam. Are we to be clockwork men, machine men, ruled by our Heart Machine in the hideous underdark? Will we submit fully to Moloch? But that’s a normative judgement. I will go farther – government-by-steam is impossible, precisely because of *normative judgements*. To have government-by-steam presumes that man is, like a rock or a machine, governed by purely physical laws. But it is not so. We make choices because we have free will, and what drives our choices is some idea of the good, or The Good, which is the Holy Spirit. It attempts to collapse human subjectivity into objectivity – our thoughts are merely the collisions of atoms, and therefore the universe could be predicted from the first state if we had a complete Theory of Everything.

And what is Culture-by-Steam? Merely the same thing. It presumes memetics is governed by purely physical laws, rather than being a thing of Man and therefore Manmade in a contingent way. The laws of culture are not like the laws of physics. What a perfect theory of memetics would give us is a prediction of what *sort of thing* might thrive in an environment, but not the shape of that thing in particular, contingent reality. To wit: Objectivism and Orthodox Marxism are, dialectically, the same ideology. Ayn Rand and Karl Marx are the same kind of person, NEET-Prophets of the Industrial Future, which now is the Industrial Past. Both of these ideologies are ideologies of High Modernism. Both of them exalt the productive over the idle, the machine over the plantation, because both exist in and are reactions to the age of the machine. And yet it’s clear that Objectivism is not Orthodox Marxism. What material conditions create are cultural ecological niches. But though different animals across different continents convergently evolve similar shapes to meet similar environments, they are not *the same animal*. The mistake of Culture-by-Steam is to imagine these laws are deterministic, that they dictate a path rather than laying out a set of possibilities that conform to the material pressures of the time.

You must forgive me for being shallow and pedantic, but I feel the need to spell it out, even though it should be obvious now what the role of the artist from the above. Obviously, if a path is contingent, what moves it? Happenstance events and the choices of *men*. And what men here? I am a little slow, so I have to work it out, but it seems clear that it is artists. This is why DALL-E et al cannot replace the artist, because the artist is not creating bulk art, but is envisioning an aesthetic and *translating* their aesthetic into something which can be perceived. An aesthetic is an imagined future, an imagined possible, a statement of an ideal. So the act of art is an act of vision, of perceiving the transcendental values of a given age. What the artist tries to capture in a scene of a battle is not the battle, but what the battle represents: Valor. To do otherwise is like the bulk landscapes of hotel rooms… kitsch. The material conditions create the ecological niche, they create a certain moment. But the artist’s goal is to draw out the essence of the moment and render it.

It is clear to any man of passing intellect why RW Artist Twitter is wrong then. But, again, I have to work out my gut assertions sometimes, because my brain is a little lacking. Imagination is not action. Words are not deeds. By being men of imagination, the artist divorces himself from the real. So too does the intellectual and the propagandist. What matters is no longer the real, but the words around the real. They are charting the map and not the territory. They are guiding imaginations, which set out a distant horizon, but to get to that horizon, you must steer the ship.

What is the revolutionary’s task? The revolutionary is the one who sees changing material conditions and re-adapts our present state to conform to God’s will. We are evolved for a more or less feudal structure, and feudalism is the natural form power takes, but material conditions killed Feudalism 1.0. We are designed to live in certain ways, but modernity and technical progress alienates us from our nature. The job of the revolutionary is to reattach ourselves to our nature and God’s plan for us, given that things are so unlike the natural state of things.

He sees the ideal of community, but he does not resurrect the old village commune and other obsolete things. He is not one who retreats from the world, but one who confronts it. He is not a reactionary, he does not react. He is the one who dictates. From Alexander to Caesar, from Washington to Lincoln to FDR, from Napoleon to Lenin, the revolutionary is the World Spirit on horseback, the one who cuts the Gordian Knot of an age’s contradictions, and leads it to a new settlement.

The Revolutionary rules by the Divine Right of Kings, for a Revolutionary, in truth, is the natural King. Just as there is always a natural aristocracy, there is also a natural King, the man who is the master of the age.

No Politics by Memes
What does this imply? The ruling class, the real elites, are not primarily men of words, but first and foremost, men of action. And what is action? Action is something that must exist in the world of the real. The artist is a man of visions and imaginations. But the king is a man of property and a leader of men. The artist dreams of Valor, but Darius dreams of cows, and frets about the trade routes for wool merchants. This may seem snarky, but it’s not. High ideals are not the place of princes. The prince is on the ready line at all times. I sneer at those who talk about being natural aristocrats because they are natural idlers. The prince sleeps on the ground and eats beans with his men. He must bleed blood for blood, and clash iron against iron.

Above all, the prince must be rooted. The thing about ideals is that ideals are impossible. You can measure how idealistic a person is by looking at how much they sacrifice for their ideals. It’s easy to say you’re honest because you always tell the truth when it benefits you. But that doesn’t make you honest at all. An ideal is held true when it costs something. A true idealist is not a sunshine soldier. And so with art. The best artist must understand best their subject. But because their subject is an Ideal, a Vision, an Aesthetic, it unroots them from reality. The artist does not swim in reality. Originally, we came up with symbols to depict and describe reality. Then people learned those symbols absent experience with those realities. Eventually, those symbols take on a life of their own, becoming hyperreality, an image reflecting reality run amok, taking on a life of its own. Bill Gates is real, the media depiction of The Billionaire is a symbol, and the 50 Shades of Gray Billionaire Romance Novel Character or The Cabal is hyperreality, that media depiction coming to life. Symbols have become detached from their referents. But if we go by the symbols without referents, we are only combining together these memes without concern for reality, what they originally described. Ridiculous constructions like Ancap Marxist-Bidenist or Hoxhaist Appalachian or Barbie Girl Nationalism are products of this sea of symbols without referents. Rather than evolving from pressures in the material world, describing material reality, they come about from the conflict of these symbols with each other, and the contradictions and tensions present within the symbols. People pick up these labels not to propose some policies or change things for their loved ones, but to own other people online who exist in the sea of symbols.

Zealots are the most extreme idealists, because they will actually shed blood for their ideals. But most men are not idealists, let alone zealots. That is why politics is driven by material concerns or status (which is our lizard brain approximation of material conditions that will lead to us mating). Men will not die to meme, but they will die to protect their material concerns. Men have died to protect their property, men have died to protect their class, and most of all, men die to protect their people and their family. In doing serious politics, we must start from serious concerns rooted in the real world.

For these reasons, Lenin said we must focus on praxis. And a man with praxis but no theory is a better king than a man with theory and no praxis. Why do ordinary soldiers and ordinary businessmen make better kings than a reedy intellectual? Because their lives have forced them to confront the real at every turn, and therefore they know reality by her shape and feel, even if they aren’t capable of intellectualizing. A king is an executive, and certain pursuits demonstrate, by necessity, executive capacity.

No Fulfillment of the Dream
The Left always wins, I say from my Soviet dacha. I mean, uhhh, my star fort. Long live Louis XIV! My free love commune.

Oh, none of those things lasted?

The thing about the eschaton is that you can’t immatenize it. The Left always wins, but every particular Left fails to accomplish its goals, because its goals are the imaginations of an artist, and what must exist in reality is some manifestation that can be real. Therefore, the utopias of every particular Left will fail, and in time, the Left of a time becomes the Right, in some sense.

All these different aesthetics and visions are arbitrary vectors in an impossibly complex multi-dimensional space, but we can’t actually reach the infinite end of the proposed vector. The mission of our civilization is always beckoning us forward, but at the end of forward is always collapse, as the contradictions of the idea pile up and undo it.

Fully Automated Space Luxury Gay Communism is no more the end of history than Fukuyama’s ramblings or Louis XIV’s absolutism. The main difference, I suppose, is that the Left that was Absolutism had less delusions about its own impossible megalomanias. There is no end of history. Rather, history is a record of contingent events in sequence, and dialectics is a process of continuous cyclical adjustment. It is like the roundabout approach of prices towards equilibrium, even though equilibrium never comes. Nevertheless, it is approached. It is the process by which the sine wave moves around the changing line such as to continuously approximate the best response for a given set of material conditions. Part of why every great modern leader gets an “-ism” is because that is what a leader must do. A leader must divorce from the impossible demands of the artists and their symbols without referents and enact practical solutions to practical problems. Paradise never comes, so it behooves us to take care of ourselves in the world as it is.

Monday’s here. Get back to work.

No country for bold men,
Monsieur le Baron

Three Laws of Dialectics, Or Towards a Explanation of Dialectics, Part I

Dearest Friends,

What’s the deal with brown white supremacists? Har har har.

No, but seriously.

Why are all the Fascists Jewish or homosexual? Come on. You know it’s true. As Gorky said, “Exterminate all homosexuals and fascism will vanish.”

The answer to both these things is the same, of course. It’s classic dialectics.

I believe we are now able to express dialectics in a more formal way, dispensing with the obscurantism of German Idealism while capturing the essences in a straightforward, plain English way, because our understandings of certain phenomena has grown far, far more advanced in the machine age. By observing convergent evolution and adaptation in technological contexts and genetic algorithms, we are able to gain an understanding of our own cultural development. Memetics was a paradigm shift in the idea of cultural development. But it doesn’t really answer why certain memes are fit and propagate, especially the propagation of memetic supercomplexes, the most interesting memes, the complex life of memetics. What a modern understanding of dialectics will provide us is a fitness equation for memetic evolution.

We will propose Three Laws and Three No’s of Dialectics:

The Three Laws:
1. Signaling
2. Cultural Hydraulics and Escape Pressure
3. Dynamic Cycling

The Three No’s:
1. No Culture By Steam
2. No Politics By Memes
3. No Fulfillment of the Dream

The dialectical process is the dominant law of sociological and cultural processes. It is why Cubism does not become “Super-Cubism”. Physical processes usually follow a cycle, linear growth, exponential growth, or a logistic curve (S-curve), but social processes do not evolve that way. Instead, social processes seem to operate by dialectics. What does dialectics describe? Dialectics describes a process of thesis, antithesis, and synthesis, a unity of opposites. What is the main dynamic of signaling? Signal, counter-signal, counter-counter-signal, with the counter-counter-signal being opposed to the counter-signal, but in a way that distinguishes it, and thus incorporates it, by reflecting the imagined Other in what it counter-counter-signals. The counter-counter-signal always bears the mark of the counter-signal in the way that the signal does not, because the purpose of the counter-counter-signal is to signal against the original counter-signal, which incorporates an opposition or criticism of the original signal not addressed by the original signal. The original signal is naive to the opposition, the counter-counter-signal bears adaptation. Signaling is the basic law by which culture moves. As culture moves, trends are opposed as lame or tacky and the cultural vanguard defines themselves against the old trend. But what determines where the new opposition heads? What fads catch on and what fads die? Signaling is well worn ground, but this isn’t.

Cultural Hydraulics
The Unity of Opposites is more illusory than real. Phenomena like brown white supremacists or anti-white whites only confuse us because we confuse the map for the territory. Concepts are the map. Concepts are the means by which we try to transform real things, which are messy objects, into word-categories, the basic building blocks of meaning from which we construct language and logic. The problem is that, having mapped reality to concepts, we confuse our map for the territory. But what is real is not our concepts, but the objects themselves. We might conceive brown white supremacists as contradictory, but what makes it so? Only the opposing concepts of “White person” and “Brown person” and the negating concept of “Racial Supremacy”. But there is no law of the universe which makes a brown person explode if they put on a swastika. Water and fire are held to be opposites culturally, but water can worsen an oil fire and fires can burn on top of rivers. Water has a reason to be considered an “opposite” to fire because water puts out fire, but that’s not because water is the opposite of water. Rather, the water reduces the heat of the fire and smothers it of oxygen. To wit, opposites are only truly opposites when there is some physical reality that compels the oppositional relation. Otherwise, all we have is conceptual opposition. And it is in conceptual opposition that the Unity of Opposites might occur, because nothing keeps the opposites from uniting, and by uniting, a tension is resolved. Let us define two kinds of physical opposition: Strong Physical Opposition and Weak Physical Opposition. Strong Physical Opposition is when some scientific law creates a physical impossibility. For instance, water putting out fire comes from a physical law. The law of gravity is a physical law, and someone countersignaling gravity will meet a very stupid end. Weak Physical Opposition is when some person or a group of persons in an institution take it upon themselves to enforce some conceptual opposition. For instance, under the Third Reich, Nazism and Judaism had a Weak Physical Opposition because the state was enforcing this relation by murdering Jews. Nevertheless, Weak Physical Oppositions are imperfect because they require the constant enforcing of the law. They require the actions of men to remain true. The Third Reich had many ethnic Jews serving it because there was no scientific law that caused their heads to explode if they became Nazis, and absent that, they could cross over if Hitler did not have them killed and they found it interesting and agreeable. Conceptual Oppositions are often rooted in past historical Weak Physical Oppositions. People think that rich people cannot be Communists – which is a ludicrous idea both now and historically – because Mao and others enacted a classicide. That’s like saying investors can’t buy high and sell low because that means getting wiped out. As Galileo would say: And yet it moves. To some extent, we must suffer the blind spots that Conceptual Oppositions impose on us, because we cannot reason without the map. Only by simplifying and categorizing things into these rigidities can we do any sort of analysis, even if real objects are too messy for the categories, but the messiness of the realities always strains our attempts to categorize and lexify them.

The structure of most midwit arguments:
Person: Rule
Midwit: Exception?
Midwit: Therefore no rule
Did you know your generalization is not perfectly accurate? Wow whoa.

The reason why this is a very, very stupid line of attack is that without generalizations and categories, we cannot think at all. The midwit likes to make this attack without realizing *all of their* concepts are equally flawed from this perspective.

So far, we have only established the Non-Contradiction of (Conceptual) Opposites, not their Unity. The Unity is a process, the process of dialectics. In the signaling/counter-signaling process, there are unguarded avenues. Because we are blind to the illusory nature of Conceptual Opposites, we are always surprised when Nixon Goes To China. But why should we be? Not only can Nixon go to China, only Nixons can go to China. There is energy from outflanking. Where do the rich go when the middle imitate them? The rich countersignal the rising middle by adopting the fashions of the poor, which their adversaries cannot adopt, because that would collapse the cultural distinctions signaled between middle and poor, which the rich have no fear of. Similarly, Nixon has no fear of being accused of being a communist, because he is the anti-communist. Political arguments break down into two sides, pro and anti, friend and enemy. Centrists are merely those who have different friends and enemies for different issues, rather than some wishy washy mystical not-pro, not-anti position on an issue (this can only be maintained by indifference, which conceptually is negative liberty, the basis of libertarianism – the state shall be indifferent to most matters). In a very abstract sense, you can conceive of Left and Right as basically two arbitrary teams, and one’s level of Leftism or Rightism is a level of purity. That is, on how many issues does this person deviate from their “team’s” friend/enemy distinction? Of course, deviation requires a fixed reference point, and this is where culture matters, because the cultural vanguard sets what the “goal” of maximally pure ideological Rightism or Leftism is for an era, which in turn determines who is “more Right wing”. The Unity of Opposites occurs when someone from the Left or Right adopts some stances of the other side *without accepting the overall frame* (this is just changing sides otherwise), thus rotating the issue such that both the original Left and Right positions are invalidated compared to the obvious correctness of the new position. The correctness is obvious because the synthesis position incorporates the good components of both sides, and both sides in a hard fought political conflict must have at least *some points* that carry weight. In short, the Left outflanks the Right from the Right or vice versa. The White Army was forced to champion mealy mouthed liberal democracy while also being castigated as incompetent Tsarists because Lenin had outflanked the Right from the Right – he was the perfect autocrat and democratic centralism was a (more) perfected autocracy, undermining any argument that might propose the virtues of Tsarist autocracy.

After Caesar, there are no Populares or Optimates because the issue is simply obsolete. A new political distinction must and will come into being.

But why?

Dynamic Cycling
Men and machines think in straight lines. But nature thinks in cycles. Why? Aren’t cycles inherently inefficient? Yes. In the overshoot and the undershoot, there exists inefficiency. As the Austrians might say, prices approach perfection in a roundabout way, always going over or under, alternating between wasteful glut and shortage. The classical Marxist-Leninist Plannerist might say the solution is obvious: Pick the perfect, correct price using your intellect and calculation. And they have, historically, directed their energies towards increasing calculation power as to *find* that perfect price.

Everything above and below the line is “wasted”

But there’s a problem with that, even if perfect calculation was possible.

It’s simple: the perfect price *changes*. Nature loves a cycle because nature does not know what the ideal carrying capacity of an environment under changing conditions and imperfect information. Even if you could calculate a perfect price, or even a system of perfect prices, a change in conditions will perturb the whole system so much as to shake it apart. The flaw in planning is the same as the flaw in the supply chain: hyperefficiency, even *when real*, is fragile, because reserve is robustness to change. And the negative feedback cycle, so loved by engineers, is better than inventory or reserve, because it is not only robust, but adaptive. Small changes are absorbed and used to reach the new ideal equilibrium. Machines are fragile because they are built for perfection. Even the best and most robust machines have assumptions about operating conditions. Biology and cycles are anti-fragile. They learn.

To wit: Human history in a graph.

The cycle must continue

If the carrying capacity of the woods increases, then the amount of deer genuinely can increase. And the characteristics of our physical environments are always changing. The business cycle isn’t just healthy because it clears out deadwood with every brush fire. No, it’s also healthy because bubbles and busts don’t have natural lengths. The pendulum is swinging, but when the pendulum swings back, it can either swing back to its original position, or nearer or farther depending on what has changed. We can think of the entirety of the Industrial Age as a “bubble” or “boom” driven by the changed conditions of cheap energy and machinery. And if we fall from here, we nevertheless stand far beyond our ancestors in the levels of knowledge and mechanical sophistication we have attained. The new equilibrium of our bubble burst is not the old 16th century stasis, because we know how to build many fascinating machines which could exist in a low energy paradigm, but which we did not conceive of back then. The future is not quite the Ancien Regime, but perhaps the Ancien Regime and however it might be altered by trains and organ-sized vacuum tube computers and machine guns and any other low-energy, high intellectual sophistication technology. The dodo dies, the mammoth is reborn. And in a distant, unremembered future, youthful Mormongol adventurers slay Rationalist GPT-3 Technoliches still guarding the ruins of Harvard TS/SCI labs, plundering ancient secrets from beneath the shadows of vast and trunkless legs of stone, the thickened lips of a Pharaonic Floyd still gasping for breath, and the lone and level concrete flatways swarming with gray goo techno-slimes.

Sing, O Wild Horse Woman.

Dusting off his sandals,
Monsieur le Baron