Tag Archives: Literature

Rising from the Ruins

Ur ruinerna

Finally arriving in the mailbox, “Rising from the Ruins” (Ur ruinerna) is a beacon of hope for Northern and Western Europe and the West in large, as these bleak days that are being heralded with jumbled and insignificant words are falling more and more on deaf and indifferent ears: “Progress”, “Democracy”, “Diversity”, “Open Society”; but which in reality are euphemisms for Kali Yuga or the Twilight of the Gods, Ragnarök.

Joakim Andersen is the head contributor for the Swedish New Right, Alt-Right – or whatever label you prefer – think-tank Motpol, (Counter pole) and a chief figure in the growing Swedish underground political and cultural sphere which is represented, aside from Motpol, by the publishing house Arktos, Logik Förlag and many more Swedish alternative media outlets.
He and the Motpol gang have committed themselves to the re-invigoration of the Swedish culture and political sphere. They describe one of their chief goals as follows: “Lifting forth a spectrum of culture left out from an increasingly narrower and infantile public discourse.”

Being a former Marxist with a keen eye for the history of ideas, Andersen has delved and shed light on the principles of Traditionalism and the New Right school of thought brought forth by the likes of Alain de Benoist and the French think-tank GRECE, (Groupement de recherche et d’études pour la civilisation européenne), chiefly responsible for introducing these ideas to Swedes seeking to find their way out of the mirage of Liberalism. He continues this admirable trade in his book debut.

Just like the eponymous title suggest, “Rising from the Ruins” proclaims “The End is Nigh”, that the liberal order of the West is doomed to perish from the internal contradictions and crises that it has afflicted upon itself via mass immigration, multicultural politics at the expense of native cultures, cultural and spiritual neglect, and unprecedented demographic change, (Progress, according to Liberals).
But as they say about “blessings in disguise”, this means that from the metaphysical ruins, not any physical rubble (with the exception of Detroit and the growing European suburbs), a new type of world is taking form, at least in the form of ideas and street activism.
“Rising from the Ruins” examines the growth of the Alt-Right phenomena and its similarities and distinctions with the European New Right. It looks at the Donald Trump phenomena, (albeit before his shift into the same-old interventionist and Zionist pandering). The book highlights a number of thinkers from which the New Right/Alt Right have reaped ideas from: Julius Evola with his Riding the Tiger, Martin Heidegger with Daesein, Ezra Pound with Usura, René Guenon with the Crisis of the Modern World, Samuel T. Francis with his Foxes and Wolves analogy of power struggle, Aleksandr Dugin with Eurasianism, Guillaume Faye with Archeo-Futurism, Antonio Gramsci with Cultural Hegemony; the seed to Cultural Marxism, Hans Blüher with the Männerbund; a fraternity of Men keeping (or re-invigorating) the flame of Civilization, (i.e. the Monks after the fall of Rome laying down the groundwork for Christian Europe), as well as highlighting the intellectual, cultural and social movements: Casa Pound; (the Männerbund), the Eurasian movement, Génération identitarie, etcetera.

Joakim Andersen proves himself an accomplished summarizer. His wide encyclopedic knowledge of the intellectual history of the Right and the various movements mentioned above is impressive to say the least. Drawing inspiration from Spengler, Evola and many others, the book does not merely linger on the political, but on the spiritual and cultural sphere, from a possible re-Christianization to a revival of European heathenism  a sargued by Alain de Benoist and others of the French New Right. The optimism one feels while reading the book makes it stand out from all the echoes of defeatism and short-term strategy that characterizes the black-pillers. Andersen allows the thinkers and ideas to speak for themselves without muffles, very seldom sharing personal thoughts or insights on the issues.

It must be noted, Andersen stresses, that the nations of Europe differs and thus one ideology or movement in a particular country may not succeed in another. The Identitarian movement in France and Germany being a good example. Both countries are unified states, composed of several historical “nations” or tribes with strong sense of “local patriotism”. In the case of France, we have the Celts of Brittany, the German heritage of Alsace, and in Germany, the state of Bavaria. In Sweden, where the nation state has gone further and local identities been swallowed up in the homogenization process – the exceptions being the provincial identities of Dalarna, Skåne and Gotland – the Identitarian movement have not picked up here as great as in France. Likewise, Casa Pound, being a product of Italian sensibility and cultural formation might prove difficult in exporting to other countries that lacks that some vigor and thumos that Italians have stored. Possibly the incomplete and non-dogmatic Fourth Political Theory could blend well with the different historical, cultural and religious backgrounds of respective European nations and peoples.

The English edition is under way, and I can highly recommend it for its spiritually and life affirming importance. Time is due to learn how to ride the tiger through all the rubbles and funeral pyres.

The Peculiar Cult of Ayn Rand

Go to the Modern Library’s list of the 100 greatest novels of all time and you’ll see a strange result. The experts choice isn’t too controversial. Ulysses is a triumph, a tribute to the capacities of the human mind, Brave New World is a perfect example of dystopian fiction, Lolita is fabulously written. The Reader’s List makes for strange reading in itself. No one with a good knowledge of literature would seriously nominate Lord of the Rings as one of the 5 best books ever written, but the really strange thing is the first 2. Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead. Really? The 2 greatest novels ever written are those long winded, frankly boring books expounding selfishness which were unpopular in their day and are widely regarded by experts as pretty average pieces of literature? Not only this, but 4 of the first 8 are books by Rand. Judging by the list, Ayn Rand a better author than Joyce or her fellow countrymen Nabokov, Tolstoy or Dostoyevsky. it is, of course laughable. As is the whole cult which has grown around Ayn Rand.

Of course, this cult didn’t develop as a grass roots movement. Atlas Shrugged didn’t slowly capture the hearts and minds of the public thanks to the enduring genius contained in it, it was hoisted into the spotlight by big money interests. As Bloomberg has reported, “John Allison, former chairman of bank holding company BB&T Corp., admires author Ayn Rand so much that he devised a strategy to spread her laissez-faire principles on U.S. campuses. Allison, working through the BB&T Charitable Foundation, gives schools grants of as much as $2 million if they agree to create a course on capitalism and make Rand’s masterwork, “Atlas Shrugged,” required reading.” That’s right, the big money interests which most benefit from adopting an Ayn Rand approach to politics and economics are the people paying to have children brainwashed with her message.

What is her message? In a word, selfisheness. She called her philosophy objectivism.  She claimed to be the greatest philosopher since Aristotle, the only one she said she owed any debt of influence to. She advocated total egotism within an atheist worldview. There is no God, there are no moral values, the best thing you can do is get ahead as much as you can before you die and disappear forever. Of course, there’s nothing new in this message, Max Stirner advocated a philosophy of egotism in his book “The Ego and It’s Own” published in the 19th century. Most of her ideas about morality were just second hand Nietzsche, although she didn’t express them as eloquently as he did, and she took them a lot more seriously. She applied her conclusions to the world of politics to advocate a total laissez faire society. Capitalist anarchism. Society shouldn’t come together to provide things like healthcare because, frankly, it’s nobody else’s problem if a cancer patient can’t afford their health costs. If everything is left to the free market, people will be free from ethical and societal obligations, free to realise their full potential.

One man to adopt this philosophy was Alan Greenspan, Chairman of the Federal Reserve from 1987 to 2006 (An appointment of Ronald Reagan). He adopted an Objectivist approach to economics, and convinced Bill Clinton to further deregulate the financial sector, eventually leading to the worst financial crash since the great depression. Greenspan, when asked to explain how this failure, admitted that it was evidence there was a flaw in the view he had approached his job with for 19 years. The flaw was adopting the views of a second rate philosopher and writer. Many prominent Republicans too, have adopted with open arms the views of Rand. Former Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan is a particularly big fan. This despite the fact that Rand openly stated her views were incompatible with religion of any kind, especially the altruism of Christianity.

In fact, one feels a certain embarrassment calling Rand a philosopher. None of her views are taken seriously in the philosophical community, she didn’t advance any new philosophical views, and the ones she subscribed to were either wrong, or she gave terrible reasons for identifying with them. For example, she thought she had refuted idealism and all world views other than materialism with her claim that “to be conscious is to be conscious of something”, thus proving there exists an “other” to consciousness. Thus proving the existence of an objective reality which takes primacy over consciousness. This is the school boy’s refutation of idealism, it’s not even worth refuting here, it’s flaws should be obvious to anyone familiar with idealism or philosophy in general. Yet, so convinced was she of her correctness that she ridiculed other philosophers, calling the great Immanuel Kant “the first hippy.” Rand is an intellectual lightweight compared to Kant, hardly fit to be spoken of in the same sentence. Yet she truly believed she was the best, perhaps excepting Aristotle.

It’s ironic Rand chose Aristotle as an example of another great philosopher, in the past few decades advances in science, particularly quantum physics, have shown that he was wrong about almost everything he wrote on. Maybe he and Rand have more in common than she realised.