Monday, June 6, 2016

Conservatives against racial collectivism

Vox Day has a post up highlighting a conservative columnist reading the alt right out of conservatism on the grounds that some of the group's members think in terms of racial identity. There's no room in conservatism for people who identify as 'white people' advancing 'white interests' or protecting 'white culture', and so on. Conservatism and libertarianism both are about individuals, not tribes.

I'm sympathetic. But I'm vastly more skeptical than sympathetic.

Tell me there's no place in conservatism, or the GOP, for NAACP members. Or members of La Raza. Or any other number of organizations which are expressly 'tribal' and focus squarely on advancing people of a certain ethnicity, or religion, or more.

It's not going to happen, because the opposition to tribalism or 'collectivism' is insincere. A NAACP member announcing their conservatism would be celebrated as a precious trophy by conservatives. No expectation to denounce the NAACP would be had.

I'd like to think this isn't an anti-white thing so much as it is an anti-complications thing. It's pure conservatism in practice, in a way: even though the opposition to tribalism has not just failed, but disastrously failed, the old way of approaching cultural issues still must be maintained at all costs. That's what modern conservatism really is about: an 'it ain't broke if we don't fix it' attitude.

8 comments:

GoldRush Apple said...

My question is can non-whites carry out 'white interests' and 'white culture', that is if theyre capable and willing in the first place? And if so, will the Richard Spencer's of the world be' okay' with that?


Crude said...

I honestly have no idea how to parse a lot of this, or at least all of my ideas are introductory at best. I think the idea of a colorblind society was actually a good one in part - it just failed, badly. Partly due to active, malicious mishandling.

As for 'non-whites carrying out white interests', I'm not sure what you mean. I think it's a demonstrable, unassailable fact that a lot of 'white culture' - taken as ideas and innovations developed why whites - can be meaningfully implemented by non-whites, even enhanced. Whites may have invented modern computers, but asians clearly know how to take that idea and run with it as well. Just as rap may have come out of black culture, but there are whites who do a damn good job with it. People who deny this are just fooling themselves, and I think they're going to be better off falling back to talk of averages and norms. You can make the case that, on average, a career in computer programming just isn't of interest in the black community. Making the case that blacks are incapable of programming to a man, and you're sunk.

I had to google Spencer to get an idea who he is. So to your question, I have no idea. I'm sure there's always going to be one or another person who's just Got Issues that got way beyond the unfortunate state of being forced into racial identity. But I also suspect they'd be in the extreme minority when you get right down to it. People talk about Uncle Toms, but my experience is that blacks and liberals consider being an Uncle Tom an insult - and they're relatively alone in that, for that matter. I'd like to know what Richard Spencer and others think of Clarence Thomas, because they remind me of a line Gavin McInnes had about how white liberals always make sure to have a black friend, but the blacks they befriend tend to be sci-fi-watching, white-cultured outliers who are basically freaks in their own communities. 'In the black community, liking Dr Who is like BEING Dr Who.'

I will say that my experience is that all this white identity stuff seems to involve people (Spencer included) saying that, in essence, they're proud of their culture, their history, etc, as a race, and would like very much to keep to that, thank you. Explicit rejection of 'superiority' talk, for pretty straightforward reasons. Where that leaves a Boondocks Tom Dubois, I don't know. I would suspect that the answer is going to shake out in a way where black criticisms of Thomas Sowell and Clarence Thomas look muted by comparison. I'm trying to imagine the reaction of the world to a black person saying 'I prefer white culture to black culture.' I'd enjoy seeing it, but part of that is because I really enjoy seeing people completely lose their shit.

Mr. Green said...

As for 'non-whites carrying out white interests', I'm not sure what you mean.

I'm not even sure what "white interests" are. The sunscreen industry?

Crude said...

I'm not even sure what "white interests" are. The sunscreen industry?

I imagine 'not being systematically discriminated against in terms of college admission standards, federal contracts, being culturally targeted and more' would top the list.

Mr. Green said...

Sure, but I think everyone has that in his interests.

Crude said...

Sure, but I think everyone has that in his interests.

Actually, 'systematically discriminating against white people in terms of college admission standards, federal contracts, being culturally targeted and more' seems to be a 'pro-black' and 'pro-hispanic' thing. Since it's explicitly demanded by people representing those groups, for their benefit. To many cheers of the people they purport they represent.

I mean, even the little crack of 'White interests? The sunscreen industry?' shows some of that cultural targeting. That's a joke that can fly in our culture. If someone said they were looking out for black interests, would a crack like 'What? Discounts at KFC?' flow freely?

Mr. Green said...

I mean, even the little crack of 'White interests? The sunscreen industry?' shows some of that cultural targeting. That's a joke that can fly in our culture. If someone said they were looking out for black interests, would a crack like 'What? Discounts at KFC?' flow freely?

But it's not really a joke, it's one of the very few examples where the colour of one's skin actually means something. (I suppose it's a bit of a crack in that while melanin affords some protection against the sun, it's limited, so yes, black people do have an interest in sunscreen too.) But everybody likes fried chicken, and I'm pretty sure that enjoyment is entirely unrelated to how much melanin you have in your skin, or your hair, or anywhere else.

In plain literal terms, there's no such thing as "white culture": Shakespeare and Mozart and Daffy Duck and Christianity are in no way functions of the chemical composition of someone's skin. On the other hand, historically — modern slavery in particular, of course — involved deliberate decisions to treat skin-colour as though it meant something, and the fact that that is irrational can't change it. I don't have any helpful answers here; I'm just trying to figure out what are the right questions to ask. "Discriminate against white people instead" is not a solution, and neither is "ignore it and it will go away".

Crude said...

But it's not really a joke, it's one of the very few examples where the colour of one's skin actually means something.

Honestly man, I can't play games like this. It's insincere, and worse, it's obnoxious. It's a bit like someone talking about the failures of neo-nazis and their obsessions with 'white people', and then someone raises their hand and says 'Oh but what about in the case of african albinos, why do the nazis not seem to count them as their brothers, did you know that some of them are, due to genetic anomaly, actually several shades paler than even Adolf Hitler himself? In fact, if you add in the hair alteration powers of peroxide...'

I ask sincerely - please, don't have conversations with me like this. Don't put on a show where you treat people talking about 'black' and 'white' as having entirely to do with melanin content, such that people in slave-owning states were dreadfully afraid of the sun because they were a deep tan away from being sentenced to pick cotton. Don't feign mystification to prove a point, because the only point it proves is that this is going to be a tremendously pedantic, grating conversation.

But if you want to get detail oriented, here's a thought. Skin color meant nothing to modern slavery except as a signifier of ancestry, and ancestry was far and away an important detail due to a combination of genetic and cultural factors. No one gave a shit about skin color in and of itself, and no one does to this day. Even the most crazy racists don't care about those things in and of themselves, or else people would be proposing skin bleaching as a way to solve 'racism' problems overnight. You may as well argue that racism is a misnomer since someone can be of X race but their skin color can wildly vary, therefore racism has never been a problem, and melaninsm is the real culprit. But that argument is the wrong kind of clueless, so it doesn't get deployed.

As for 'ignore it and it will go away', actually yes, ignoring race altogether would have at least warded off racial collectivism. It'd do so tautologically. That route has been rejected, and now people instead want to have conversations about what amount to racial debts and self-flagellation in the name of social justice. Have that conversation, and I think we're going to find that there's more complaints and more anger from more directions than originally intended.