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samedi, 21 avril 2012

Leo Strauss and the Conservative Movement

Leo Strauss and the Conservative Movement

by Paul Gottfried

Ex: http://lewrockwell.com/




A book of mine, Leo Strauss and Conservative Movement in America: A Critical Appraisal, is about to come out with Cambridge University Press; and it has a special connection to the Mises Institute. Much of the critical thrust comes from attending conferences sponsored by the Mises Institute and from getting to know my fellow- participants and their writings. Although I harbored strong doubts about my latest subjects even before these encounters, my conversations with David Gordon, Murray Rothbard, Robert Higgs and Thomas DiLorenzo and later, discovering Mises’s comments about Strass gave additional substance to my suspicions. My project became a way of calling attention to a significant body of criticism that the liberal-neoconservative press and most scholarly organizations wouldn’t deign to present. I was upset in particular by the inability of David Gordon (and Lew Rockwell) to find a suitable publisher for a long, incisive work that David had produced about Harry Jaffa’s reading of American history. It was one of the most cerebral "value critiques" by a living thinker that I had seen.

Why, asks David, should Jaffa, a cult figure who is wined and dined by GOP benefactors, be immune from the type of assessment that other authors of scholarly works should have to accept? Why do Straussians like Jaffa, Allan Bloom, Thomas Pangle, and Charles Kesler achieve canonical status as "conservative" thinkers without having their ideas rigorously examined in widely accessible forums? It seems that the only appraisals such figures have to deal with are puff pieces in neoconservative publications and the scribbling of inflamed leftists attacking them as rightwing extremists.



Note that my book does not come out of any political engagement. It is in no way a statement of my political creed. Although hardly friendly to the Wilsonian Weltpolitik of the Straussians, I devote more space to defending my subjects from unjust critics than I do to dissecting their views. Nor was my book produced, as one nasty commentator writing to the executive editor of an Ivy League press explained, because I’m "a very angry person" trying to settle scores. Apparently my madness would "permanently discredit" any press that was foolish enough to publish me. My book at any rate is not an expression of pique, and I bend backward to make sense of arguments that I have trouble accepting at face value. I also treat main subject, Leo Strauss, with respect and empathy, even while disagreeing with his hermeneutic and liberal internationalism. I stress that for all his questionable judgments, Strauss was a person of vast humanistic learning, and more thoughtful and less pompous than some of his famous students. I fully sympathize with the plight that he and others of his background suffered who because of their Jewish ancestry were driven out of their homeland and forced to live in exile. My own family suffered the same fate.

What seemed intolerable, however, was the unwillingness of Straussians and their adulators to engage serious critics, some of whom have been associated with the Mises Institute. These expressions of moral self-importance may go back to Strauss himself. Murray Rothbard observed that at a Volker Fund conference, his teacher Mises had argued vainly with Strauss about the need to separate facts from values in doing research. Strauss had retorted that there are moral judgments inseparably attached to our use of facts. This supposedly indicates that one could not or, perhaps more importantly, should not draw the fact/value distinction that Mises, and before him, in a different form, Max Weber had tried to make. In response to these statements, Mises argued that facts remain such, no matter how people dress them up. "A prostitute would be plying the same trade no matter what designation we choose to confer on such a person." As the debate wore on and Strauss began to moralize, Mises lost his equanimity. He indicated to Rothbard that he was being asked to debate not a true scholar but a "gymnasium instructor."



In my book I quote David, who has taken over and elaborated on the criticism offered by his teacher and Murray’s teacher Mises, namely, that the Straussians reach for moral platitudes against those who are better- armed with "facts." One reason David is mentioned so often in my monograph, and particularly in the chapter "The Method Deconstructed," is that he did much of the deconstructing for me. While helping with the proofreading, which is another service he performed, David commented about how much he enjoyed my text; then, in typically David-fashion, he listed as his favorite parts of my book those pages on which he’s mentioned. Actually he missed more than half of the references to him, including two of them in the acknowledgements.

Like other thoughtful critics of Straussian methodology, specifically Grant Havers, Barry Shain, and Kenneth McIntyre, David was essential to my work. But in his case listening to him reel off what was wrong with how the Straussians read (or misread) selected texts, inspired my project. Without the fact that David cornered me about ten years ago at a conference in Auburn and explained to me in between Borscht Belt jokes the fallacies of Strauss and his disciple, I doubt that I would have done my book. His conversation and written comments, stored in the bowels of the Lew Rockwell Archives, made my task considerably less burdensome. One remark from David’s conversation in Auburn that I still remember was his hypothetical rejoinder to Harry Jaffa in a debate that never took place. Jaffa insisted on the pages of National Review, and in fact wherever else he wrote, that we should believe in equality because Lincoln did (never mind that Di Lorenzo, among others, has challenged this view of Lincoln with counter-evidence). David asked that "even if we assume that Jaffa was expressing Lincoln’s real opinion, why should we have to hold the same view"? And why are we supposed to impose Lincoln’s opinion on unwilling subjects by force of arms? No one else to my knowledge has asked these indelicate questions.



Even then David and I were sick of the smarminess with which certain Straussians would respond to logical and factual objections. Calling one’s opponent a "relativist" or scolding him for not embracing universal democratic values is not an answer at all. It is an arrogant evasion of a discussion. David also observed that in their attempt to find "secret writing" in texts, Straussians would almost compulsively read their own values into the past. Presumably all smart people who wrote "political philosophy," no matter when they lived, were religious skeptics, yearning for something like "liberal democracy." This speculation could be neither confirmed nor disconfirmed and contributed zip to scholarly discussion. Like me, David also wondered why none of the great minds whom the Straussians wrote about was ever shown to be a Christian heretic or something other than a forerunner of those who are now revealing their concealed meanings. One might have thought that if concealment was their intention, these fellows on at least some occasions would have been hiding non-modern thoughts from the public or their monarchs. Why do all "secret writings" seem to have originated with a Jewish agnostic residing in an American metropolitan area?

An observation in my book contrasting Straussian enterprises to the Mises Institute also warrants some attention here. The Miseans and the Straussians both claim intellectual descent from Central European Jewish scholars who fled from the Nazis. Moreover, both groups have processed these biographical experiences and incorporated them into their worldviews, but in totally different ways. Whereas the Miseans view their founder as the victim of a particularly noxious form of state socialism, the Straussians emphasize the evils of the "German connection," as explained by Allan Bloom in The Closing of the American Mind. While the Miseans focus on the link between state planning and tyranny, the Straussians finger the uniquely wicked heritage of the Germans in telling us why "liberal democracy" is always under siege. Strauss himself established this perspective, when in Natural Right and History he stressed the continuing danger of German ideas, even though the German military threat had been defeated six years earlier.



While the disciples of Mises favor an isolationist foreign policy designed to dismantle socialism at home, the Straussians are perpetually reliving Munich 1938, when the "democracies" backed down to a German dictatorship, just as they had failed to confront the supposed iniquities of Kaiser Wilhelm in 1914. One might push the contrast even further: while the Mises Institute celebrates the Vienna in which the Austrian School of Economics took form, including the generally supportive liberal monarchy of Kaiser Franz Josef, the Straussians have continued their efforts to counter a threat that they see originating in Central Europe. During the student revolts of the 1960s, Allan Bloom and his soul-brothers blamed these outbursts on German critics of modern democracy. Strauss’s star students managed to find the German threat wherever they looked. In one of my earliest encounters with Straussian professors, at Michigan State in 1967 and 1968, it was explained to me that German historicists had fueled the antiwar student protest with their antidemocratic notions. This connection seemed to me so surreal that it caused me to reflect on the life’s experiences of those who could believe such things.

Significantly, these Straussian attacks on the tainted German heritage play well in our society of letters. A Jewish liberal-neoconservative presence (perhaps predominance) in the media and in the academy renders some Straussian fixations profitable. Well-placed intellectuals are still agonizing over the "German catastrophe" in a way that they don’t about other bloodbaths, particularly those unleashed by Communist tyrants. There is also a culture of defeat and self-rejection among the Germans which fits perfectly with the Straussian war on German ideas and German illiberalism. Although the Left may attack the Straussians rhetorically as "fascists," it shares many of their sentiments, particularly their revulsion for German culture and for German politics before the First World War.

Another factor has helped the Straussians professionally: Their impassioned Zionism has enhanced their moral acceptability in Jewish and neoconservative circles. If their interpretive gymnastics may sometimes drive their political fans up the wall, Strauss’s disciples win points where it counts. They are recognized as part of the journalistic establishment. Whereas the Miseans (and a fortiori this author) would have trouble getting into the New York Times, Washington Post or neoconservative publications, Straussians (and their allies) appear in all these venues as both authors and respected subjects. Nothing is more baffling than the complaint that the "liberal media" ignore or persecute Straussians. This gripe is almost as baseless as another related one, that Straussians are excluded from elite universities. Would that I had been excluded from academic posts during my career the way the Straussians have been.



I do not mean to suggest that there is something wrong with how the Mises Institute has dealt with its founder’s experiences in Central Europe. Its approach to this aspect of twentieth-century history has been rational and even commendable. But it has certainly not won the Mises Institute the moral acceptability that the Straussians have achieved by taking the opposite position. Curiously, leftist opponents have laced into the Straussians for not being sufficiently Teutonophobic. Despite the scornful references to German ideas in their polemics, these Straussians are alleged to be perpetuating the hated German connection while pretending to denounce it. In short, one can never hate German thought sufficiently (except of course for Marx and a few other selected German leftists) to please our current cultural industry. But Straussians can at least be credited with having made a start here.

One final point may belong here: The professional and journalistic successes of Strauss’s students have had little to do with their efforts to revive a "classical heritage" or to make us appreciate Plato and Thucydides. The argument I try to make in my book is exactly the opposite: the Straussians have done so well at least partly because they have bet on the right horse in our current liberal internationalist politics. They provide window-dressing and cultic terminology for a widely propagated American creed pushed by government and the media, featuring calls for armed "human rights" campaigns, references to the Holocaust and the Anglosphere, and tributes to liberal or social democratic "values." The Straussians have made names for themselves by putting old and even stale wine into new bottles.

December 7, 2010

Paul Gottfried [send him mail] is Horace Raffensperger Professor of Humanities at Elizabethtown College and author of Multiculturalism and the Politics of Guilt, The Strange Death of Marxism, Conservatism in America: Making Sense of the American Right, and Encounters: My Life with Nixon, Marcuse, and Other Friends and Teachers. His latest book, Leo Strauss and the American Conservative Movement: A Critical Appraisal, was just published by Cambridge University Press.


Copyright © 2011 by LewRockwell.com. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.

jeudi, 19 avril 2012

Über den Spontaneismus


Über den Spontaneismus

Werner Olles

Ex: http://www.catholica.presse.fr

[Gespräch im Oktober 2008. Französisch erschienen in der Ausgabe 102 (Winter 2008-2009)]

Während das westliche System am Ende ist, dann befinden wir uns gegenwärtig in einer Übergangszeit, deren Ausgang aus einem Komplex von mannigfaltigen Rekonstruktionsvorgängen hervorgehen sollte, worüber es zweckmässig wäre, nachzudenken. Andererseits sollte man in diesem Zusammenhang die Erstellung einer Alternative erwägen. Zu diesem Zeitpunkt stellen sich zweierlei Fragen : einerseits die der Ziele (wodurch das bestehende System ersetzen ?), andererseits die der zu erwägenden Aktion, um den Übergang zu erleichtern.

Erstere ruft ein Problem hervor, das mit der Mannigfaltigkeit der Meinungen und deren möglichen Kakophonie zusammenhängt. Eine solche Situation deckt die Zerstörungskraft der geistigen Ordnungsgrundlagen bei denen auf, die sie natürlicherweise aufrechterhalten sollten, sowie die Fähigkeit zur unparteiischen Suche nach der Wahrheiten der Sozialordnung. Es herrscht in diesem Bereich ein Gemisch aus Überalterung und Korrosion durch die Grundprinzipien des herrschenden Systems, das auf die Bedeutung des Problems hinweist.

Die zweite Frage verweist uns auf die Theorie der Aktion, die einem ordentlichen Gesellschaftsaufbau vorangeht. Sie ist umso wichtiger als sie den Stolperstein ist, der die Pietisten oder Quietisten (einer deren schärfsten Kritiker Günter Rohrmoser ist) von  allerlei Reformisten, welche sich darüber einig sind, dass sie Einfluss auf die öffentliche Meinung durch Lobbying und Unterwanderung ausüben können, und Spontaneisten, welche für  den hiesigen und jetzigen Aufbau von befreiten, sich mutmasslich erweiternenden Zonen, trennt. Die letzten zwei Kategorien gehen über die Links/Rechts Spaltung hinaus, obwohl beide Begriffe von der Linken herkommen, was nicht unbedeutend ist. Es würde sich lohnen diese Themen zu untersuchen, vor allem durch die Analyse geschichtlicher und theoretischer Vorgänge. In diesem Bereich verfügt die Linke über ein bedeutendes Erbgut, insoweit sie sich durch die revolutionäre Theorie dafür interessiert hat.  Im Hinblick auf den Ausmass der Problematik, werde ich mich auf die Analyse dessen beschränken, was ich Spontaneismus genannt habe, der so aussieht, als wäre er die allerletzte Zuflucht von all den Enttäuschten des Aktivismus. Einige Fragen darüber :


Sicher ist, dass sich der Linksspontaneismus auf der Basis einer Reaktion dem Leninismus gegenüber entwickelt hat, der einer Erbschleicherei der Revolution zugunsten einer Elite von Berufsrevolutionären beschuldigt wurde. Wie sich aus dem oben zitierten Artikel herausstellt, hat die Frankfurter Schule, in die Fusstapfen Trotskis und anderer Denker der Zeit zwischen den beiden Weltkriegen wie Anton Pannekoek oder Georg Lukacs tretend, dazu beigetragen, keinem der beiden –dem Staatskapitalismus sowjetischer Prägung und der freien Marktwirtschaft/dem Liberalkapitalismus– Recht zu geben, indem sie beide dessen beschuldigt hat, dass sie Herrschaftsstrukturen aufrechterhalten. In dieser Nachfolge wird die kommunistische Revolution als « bourgeois » kritisiert, weil sie weder die Produktionsverhältnisse noch den Unterschied zwischen Unterdrückern und Unterdrückten abgeschafft hat. Sich dazu beschränkend, eine herrschende Klasse (das Bürgertum) durch eine andere (die Parteibürokratie) zu ersetzen, führt sie zur Aufstellung eines Staatskapitalismus. Inwieweit kann der Verruf der leninistischen Vorstellung der von Berufsrevolutionären geleiteten Revolution die Entwicklung des revolutionären Spontaneismus, der behauptet, dass die Revolution aus der spontanen  Aktion der sich ihrer Entfremdung bewusst werdenden Massen hervorgeht, verständlich machen ? Was ist über die Entwicklungsetappen der spontaneistischen Ideologie von der Rätetheorie bis zur Arbeiterselbstverwaltung zu bemerken ? Welche sind die  psychologischen Triebkräfte, die diese Entwicklung erklären ? Indem er diese Spannung zwischen Organisation und Spontaneität hervorruft, die in Frankreich viele Diskussionen ausgelöst hat, insbesondere innerhalb der Gruppe « Socialisme ou barbarie » ( Claude Lefort trat für die Spontaneität ein und Cornelius Castoriadis für die Erhaltung eines organisierten Pols), entwickelt der Spontaneismus einen inneren  selbstzerstörerischen Widerspruch. Ausser dem Fall von kleinen Gruppen, die sich aufgrund der beschränkten Anzahl ihrer Mitglieder einzeln organisieren können, liegt das Problem in der spontanen Organisierung der Massen, die nach der Aufstandsphase um der Dauerhaftigkeit willen Strukturen und eine nicht-spontane Organisierung voraussetzt. Diesbezüglich stellt sich die Frage, ob der utopische Träger des Spontaneismus nicht etwa im Vorbild einer automatischen und ungezwungenen Sozialharmonie liegt, die auf Adam Smiths « verborgene Hand » verweist, sowie auf die fourierische Utopie oder auch auf die Soziobiologie. In disem Zusammenhang wäre nicht der Wesenszug des Linksspontaneismus die radikale Ablehnung jeglicher Herrschaftsform, wie sie durch den Leninismus kräftig und unberechtigt aufrechterhalten wurde ?

Das andere Charakteristikum des Spontaneismus besteht in einer Form der Ungeduld. Die Leninisten halten sie für den Wesensmerkmal des Linksextremismus und dessen revolutionären Ungestüm (Mao). Der Spontaneismus zielt auf zügige, konkrete Ergebnisse und gibt deswegen unmittelbar erkennbaren Teilerrungenschaften vor der glücklichen Zukunft den Vorzug. Was für eine moralische und psychologische Schwäche tritt dadurch zutage ?

Antwort zu 1.:

Im Laufe der Durchsetzungsgeschichte der kapitalistischen Warengesellschaften wurden immer wieder ursprüngliche Emanzipationsbewegungen mit entschieden systemoppositionellem Anspruch als Wegbereiter neuer Entwicklungen historisch wirksam. Von der alten Arbeiterbewegung bis zur studentischen Revolte von 1967/68 haben sie letztlich dem zum Durchbruch verholfen, was den Erfordernissen warengesellschaftlicher Modernisierung entsprach. Weil die antikapitalistisch gesinnten Protagonisten den nächsten energischen Schritt hin zur Verallgemeinerung der Warenform permanent mit der drohenden Aufhebung kapitalistischer Herrschaft verwechselten, konnten sie ihre immanent vorwärtstreibende Rolle nur gegen den erbitterten Widerstand der Verteidiger des Staus quo spielen. Die mühsam erkämpfte Anerkennung als legitime soziale Bewegung markierte dann jeweils den Punkt, an dem die linke Opposition vom Outlaw zum Teil der reorganisierten und modernisierten warengesellschaftlichen Ordnung mutierte und ihre überschüssigen leninistischen Momente abzustreifen begann.
In dieser Situation trat der Links-Spontaneismus auf den Plan und wich vom diesem vertrauten Muster entscheidend ab, in dem er eindeutig klarstellte, daß der nostalgische Rekurs auf eine bereits abgeschlossene Epoche eben keinen neuen Entwicklungshorizont eröffnet und beim besten Willen auch nicht mehr mit einem Hinausgehen über die kapitalistische Ordnung zu verwechseln ist, wie es bei dem großen, wesentlich aus dem Kampf der alten Arbeiterbewegung miterwachsenen Etatisierungsschübe der ersten Hälfte des letzten Jahrhunderts noch der Fall war.

Weil der Spontaneismus, zu dem natürlich auch die reformistischen Globalisierungsgegner von Attc & Co. zu zählen sind, jedoch nicht in der Lage ist, eine radikale Gesellschafts- und Wertkritik, und am allerwenigsten eine Krisentheorie zu formulieren, führt er sich nur selbst hinters Licht. Das Gipfel-Hopping wird sich eher über kurz denn über lang totlaufen, gleichzeitig tummeln sich in der gesamten spontaneistischen Bewegung Heerscharen von Obskuranten, Scharlatanen und Sektierern jeglicher Coleur, und der Nachweis, daß die dürftigen Konzepte des Spontaneismus mit der Marxschen Theorie des Kapitals im Allgemeinen nicht zur Deckung zu bringen sind, ist leicht zu führen. Analyse durch die Demonstration guten Willens und moralische Appelle zu ersetzen, um damit auf die Tittelseiten der Zeitungen zu kommen, beweist letztlich doch nur, wie intellektuell herunter gekommen diese gegen die Fakten und logischen Regeln des Marktes und der Ökonomie argumentierende und agierende Bewegung ist. Doch stellt der Spontaneismus nicht die „Kinderkrankheit des Kommunismus“ dar, wie Lenin dies dem Linksextremismus nicht ganz zu Unrecht unterstellte, vielmehr ist er eine Sonderform des Linksextremismus. Die „Spannung zwischen Organisation und Spontaneität“ liegt dabei sicher auch in den Gegensätzen zwischen einer gewissen marxistischen Orthodoxie, für die es immer eine „gute Seite“ der technischen Entwicklung des Kapitalismus zu retten gilt (mikroelektronische Revolution) und einer gegengesellschaftlichen Praxis, die versucht, sich die vitalen Kräfte des Menschen anzueignen, indem sie die Maschinerie zerstört, die diese paralysiert.


Inwieweit mag 1968 –wenn nicht gar explizit, so doch implizit, im Sinne der Uneinigkeit einer eine Vielzahl von Gruppierungen zusammenführenden Bewegung– als der Höhepunkt des Spontaneismus gelten ? Was verbindet die spontaneistische  Durchdringung mit der Tatsache, dass die achtundsechziger Revolution schliesslich zur gesellschaftlichen Integration der Mehrheit ihrer Kader geführt hat ? In seinem Buch L’archéologie d’un échec (Seuil, 1993) hat der französische Sprachwissenschaftler Jean-Claude Milner darauf hingewiesen, dass die Moderne in ihrer Spätphase durch den Verzicht auf die Kompromisslosigkeit und die Übernahme der reformistischen Methode gekennzeichnet wird. Aufgrund seines utopischen Charakters zum Scheitern verurteilt, wäre der Spontaneismus in seiner revolutionären Prägung nur eine Zwischenstation zum allgemeinen Reformismus. Damit wäre das Vermächtnis des Spontaneismus ein Doppelvermächtnis : als Politikum würde es den Weg für den Reformismius frei machen ; als Utopie (eine andere Gesellschaft aufbauen) würde es zur Ghettoisierung und zum Kommunitarismus führen. Auf jeden Fall wird auf das Ziel der sozialen Umgestaltung verzichtet und das Politische abgelehnt. In dieser Hinsicht stellt sich die Frage nach dem Anteil des Spontaneismus an dem sozialen Zusammenbruch und der Entwicklung neuer Formen von Bürgerkrieg. Es sieht alles so aus, als hätte sich das Wesen des Bürgerkriegs gründlich verändert. Die Konfrontation von  zwei identifizierbaren Blöcken (Kirche gegen Laizismus, Kommunismus gegen Kapitalismus) wird durch die Vermehrung der Guerrillas und der  nicht intensiven Konflikte ersetzt.

Der Linksspontaneismus hat sich neu gestaltet und verzeichnet seit Davos, Seattle und Porto Alegre neue Erfolge mit dem Altermondialismus. Es wäre von Interesse, nach dessen Ursprünge zu forschen –insbesondere die Beziehung zu den vom Neo-Zapatismus des Unterkommandanten Marcos angewendeten Techniken– und nach der Anpassung der blanquistischen Tradition an die Erfordernisse der Weltmedien (anscheinend von denjenigen, die die Attentate vom 11. September konzipiert haben, meisterhaft beherrscht).

Antwort zu 2.:

Es ist ein Faktum, daß sich eine linke Gesellschaftskritik, die diesen Namen verdient, in den letzten zwanzig Jahren weltweit zusehends ins Mikrologische zurückgezogen hat. Und dies, obwohl sich das vollmundige Versprechen der Marktideologen, Globalisierung bedeute in letzter Instanz Frieden und mehr Wohlstand für alle, nach zwei Jahrzehnten neoliberaler Offensive gründlich blamiert hat. Daran trägt u.a. die 68er-„Revolution“ ein gerütteltes Maß an Schuld. Zwar war ´68 keineswegs der Höhepunkt des Spontaneismus sondern vielmehr das Datum seiner offiziellen Wiedergeburt, doch weil man sich seitdem auf pure Phantastereien kaprizierte, endeten zahlreiche 68er als Begleitprodukt kapitalistischer Modernisierung und formulieren inzwischen begeistert alternative Regierungsprogramme, die angesichts der laufenden Krisen kein einziges Gramm emanzipatorischen Mehrwirts erwirtschaften. Als Reformer im schlechten Sinne, den dieser Begriff mittlerweile angenommen hat, betreiben diese Leute repressive Krisenverwaltung und beschwören dabei allenthalben eine völlig nebelhaft bleibende „Zivilgesellschaft“ als Träger selbstverantwortlichen Handelns. Die neoliberale Propaganda tut genau dasselbe.

Die „neuen Erfolge“ des Links-Spontaneismus bestehen allerdings unseres Erachtens darin, daß die Attac-Theoretiker Antonio Negri und Michael Hardt mittels ihrer verkürzten und personalisierenden Kapitalismusvorstellung den neuen Elendsunternehmern einreden wollen, ihre „selbständige“ Arbeit sei eine wirkliche Freiheit, weil sie einen Laptop in ihrem Gepäck und keinen Chef nötig haben. In ihrem grundlegenden Werk „Empire“ ist an keiner einzigen Stelle von eigentlicher kategorialer Arbeits- oder Wertkritik die Rede. Als ginge es heute noch um die Arbeitsbedingungen des italienischen Fabrikproletariats der fünfziger Jahre wird dagegen die Marxsche Werttheorie für überholt erklärt und von einer neuen revolutionären Subjektivität als Nachfolgerin der alten Arbeiterklasse schwadroniert. Das ist aufgeklärtes Geschwätz im Endstadium. Rgeression pur. Diese Intellektuellen bewegen sich auf der Ebene vorprogrammierter Arbeitsbienen. Die Zweite Internationale läßt grüßen!
Analog zur Zuckergussvariante dieser verlogenen Öffnungsrethorik, die sich hier einmal mehr als der Weisheit letzter Schluß intoniert und sich dabei selbst ins Delirium versetzt, zeitigt die planetarische Politik des internationalen Terrorismus im Zeitalter der globalen Kulturkämpfe gewisse Erfolge. Da „die teuerste Ware auf dem Weltmarkt nicht Gold oder Diamant, sondern Kultur ist“ (Obi Egbuna, 1970), muß, wer bei kulturellen Bruchlinienkonflikten auch medial Flagge zeigen will, nicht nur den hegemonialen Diskurs der realistischen Theoriebildung und die mediale Klaviatur meisterhaft beherrschen, sondern auch die Kaltschnäuzigkeit besitzen, der Realität eines Westens der Moderne die fremdkulturelle Realität eines Nichtwestens der Vormoderne bzw. Gegenmoderne gewaltsam vor Augen zu führen. Positiv daran ist jedenfalls, daß die imaginierte Verabschiedung des Westens aus der Geschichte als metaphysische Träumerei à la Fukuyama entlarvt wurde, und das Wiederaufleben von ethnischen und religiösen Identitätsbildungen und deren unerwartete Geschichtsmächtigkeit die große Illusion einer Vollendbarkeit der Geschichte endgültig ad acta legten.


Der ursprüngliche Spontaneismus geht auf die französische Revolution zurück (Babeuf), der aber im konterrevolutionären Umfeld immer wieder nachgeahmt wurde. Wenn Joseph de Maistre behaupten konnte, dass « die Konterrevolution keine Revolution in umgekehrter Richtung sondern  das Gegenteil von der Revolution » sei, heisst es eben, dass diese Mimesis eine mit der Revolution zeitgenössischen Realität ist. Wenn auch die konservativen, reaktionären, rechtsradikalen Kreise, usw., politisch auf diesem Weg nie bedeutende Erfolge gehabt haben, haben sie nichtsdestoweniger die Mimesis in ihren theoretischen Vorstellungen gehegt. Angesichts der erwarteten Implosion eines zu Ende gehenden Systems, was für ein theorisiertes Aktionsmodell bleibt uns übrig ? Der Spontaneismus hat ausser im Bereich der reinen Abstraktionen kein politisches Ziel sondern nur ein mikrosoziales moralischer und privater Art, –er beansprucht  eine gewisse Lebensweise. Der Grund dafür  wird wahrscheinlich am besten durch den Immediatismus zutage gebracht : die fehlende Tugend der Seelenstärke (als Unfähigkeit zur Geduld und schliesslich zur Hoffnung ;  Kehrseite der Medaille von der utopischen Abstaktion ?).

Antwort zu 3.:

Ein „theoretisertes Aktionsmodell“ sehe ich auf der Rechten nicht. Die Zerrissenheit zwischen Fortschrittsglauben und Dekadenzbewusstsein kennzeichnen zwar die meisten kulturpessimistischen Endzeitdiskurse, bei denen es immer um alles oder nichts geht, aber vorherrschend bleiben die negativen Konnotationen. Als eschatologische Irrealos zwischen Postmodernismus und Lifestyle kann man sich gerade noch eine Ästhetisierung der Krise des Systems leisten. Die Rechte ist, stromlinienförmig ihrer Epoche entsprechend zwar nicht mehr die alte, aber eben auch keine neue. Als Prototyp für den postmodernen Sozialcharakter kann sie auch alles andere als rechts sein. Das erweist sich aber gerade in seiner rechten Variante als eine Mischung aus Selbstbetrug und Rosstäuscherei, die haarscharf an der ersehnten Eleganz vorbeisegelt. Der alte Rechtsradikalismus wird dabei jedoch nicht aufgehoben, sondern zum bloßen Gestus verdünnisiert, bis von ihm bloß noch ein verbiesterter, spießiger und theoretisierender Snobismus übrig bleibt, der mit Begriffen wie „Revolution“ oder „Konterrevolution“ nur noch äußerlich kokettiert, andererseits aber die Orwellsche Sprache des Liberalismus pflegt. Als blühendes Zeitgeist-Talent betet er im hippen Popgewand geradezu das Evangelium der 89er Loveparade-Generation herunter, der peinlichsten Generation, die es je gab: die Verweigerung intellektueller Kritik und bewußtem Widerstand.

Der Aufstieg der chinesischen Macht und die Dynamik des Islam mögen vielleicht die Notwendigkeit eines christlich-konservativen Gegenfundamentalismus begründen, dem stehen jedoch die inneren Fäulnis- und Verfallsprozesse des Okzidents entgegen. Wir haben unsere kulturellen Grundlagen – und das Wesen aller Kultur ist nach Oswald Spengler Religion – ohne jede Not einfach auf dem Müllhaufen entsorgt, dabei steht der Feind schon im Inneren. Aber auch zur innerstaatlichen Feinderklärung fehlt uns angesichts unserer herunterästhetiserten Politik schlichtweg die Kraft. Stattdessen plantscht man in den seichten Gewässern des postmodernen Diskurses und erklärt die lächerliche Verfallsgestalt des monadisierten, handlungsunfähigen und bis zur offenkundigen Ichlosigkeit regredierten Inividuums zur großen Zukunft.

Da wir aufklärerischer als die Aufklärung sein wollten in dem Wunsch Tabula rasa zu machen, im Ikonoklasmus, im Bruch mit allen Traditionen, bleibt einem nur noch der völlige Neuanfang, ohne auf irgendetwas Überliefertem aufbauen zu können. Die „Kehrseite der Medaille der utopischen Abstraktion“ besteht dann womöglich in der gründlichen Abwendung vom geistigen Gesamtmüll einer negativen Ontologie, die in der Geschichtsmetaphysik der Moderne bis zur Bewusstlosigkeit reinkarniert wird.

Article printed from Revue Catholica: http://www.catholica.presse.fr

mercredi, 18 avril 2012

A propos de « L’essence du politique »

A propos de « L’essence du politique »

frend.jpgUn commentaire du Passant1 sur mon précédent billet m’amène à anticiper sur une série de billets que j’avais (vaguement) prévus à partir d’une lecture de Julien Freund. Jusqu’ici, je connaissais seulement de Freund ses textes d’introduction à la sociologie de Max Weber ou de Georg Simmel. La lecture de cette étrange conversation imaginée entre un certain Pierre Bérard2 et Julien Freund m’a donné envie d’en savoir plus sur la sociologie de Freund lui-même. J’ai donc profité de l’été pour lire l’ouvrage majeur de Freund qu’est L’essence du politique (1965), en complétant par une relecture de quelques classiques comme Le savant et le politique de Max Weber, Le Prince de Machiavel, mais aussi Les politiques d’Aristote ou L’histoire de la guerre du Péloponnèse.

J’en tire ici quelques réflexions ou questions sans grand ordre. Il y aura peut-être ensuite quelques billets plus systématiques.

Le Passant, dans son commentaire, réagit à la conclusion de mon précédent billet sur la nécessité affirmée par Freund d’éviter tant la moralisation de la politique que la politisation de la morale. Il affirme au contraire que la politique serait par définition une moralisation du politique. Il s’agirait moins de mettre en œuvre des liens d’appartenance ou de participation que de définir les « bons » liens. J’entends dans cette remarque comme un écho de ce que disait Jean Gagnepain sur l’hégétique, que ses lecteurs entendent très souvent comme une légalisation du légitime, mais qu’il définissait lui-même d’une façon plus complexe et problématique qu’on ne veut bien le dire. La messe, en tous cas, n’est pas dite sur ce sujet !

Il faut d’abord savoir si l’on se place 1° – dans une perspective qui est celle de l’action politique et donc de la justification de telle ou telle décision, de tel ou tel régime, ou de telle ou telle définition de ce que devrait être le politique, de même que le personnel politique, ou 2° – dans la perspective scientifique de la description du phénomène politique, quelles que soient les époques, les institutions ou les régimes. Beaucoup de lectures de ce que Gagnepain dit de l’hégétique me semblent se situer dans la première perspective. Elles regrettent que le personnel politique actuel ne soit pas nécessairement un modèle de vertu et affirment qu’à l’avenir, il devra l’être (mais c’était déjà le propos de Platon dans La République !). On est dans l’éthique de conviction au sens de Max Weber. Dans une perspective normative en tous cas. On n’est pas dans l’analyse de ce qu’est le politique.

Si on se place dans cette deuxième perspective, celle du sociologue, qui se doit d’étudier « froidement » le politique tel qu’il existe (ou la politique telle qu’elle existe — je ne me prononce pas pour l’instant sur la différence entre le et la politique), on peut remarquer que les convictions sur ce qui doit être, sur ce que sont les « bons » liens sociaux, etc. font effectivement partie du politique. Il n’y a pas de politique sans convictions, ni même sans passion, comme l’observait bien Weber. Mais ces convictions ou ces passions sont de toutes sortes. Les uns sont convaincus du caractère néfaste du « capitalisme financier », d’autres dénoncent l’immigration, d’autres encore plaident pour un développement durable ou une écologie politique, etc. Tous sont persuadés que leurs convictions sont les « bonnes » convictions, que les liens ou les associations qu’ils veulent tracer sont les « bons » liens, les « bonnes » associations… Le moins que l’on puisse dire est que la définition de ce qui est « bon » ou « bien » est pour le moins conflictuelle, polémique. Dans la perspective de l’action, comment choisir le bon « bien » ? En retenant le camp le plus vertueux ? Mais comment ? Admettons que l’on arrive à sélectionner le personnel politique (comme on sélectionne sur d’autres critères les pilotes de chasse) pour exclure des fonctions politiques celles ou ceux qui sont carrément malades (névrosés, psychopathes, mais aussi pervers et psychotiques en tout genre, car ce n’est pas plus rassurant). Il ne restera donc que des gens à peu près équilibrés, aussi capables de responsabilité que de vertu. Croit-on vraiment que l’on aura tranché la question du bien ? Non, car il y a sans doute autant de gens capables de responsabilité comme de vertu dans les différents camps et l’on retrouvera les conflits et les polémiques sur ce qui est bon et bien. On peut dire que le choix devra se faire de façon « démocratique ». Mais la démocratie elle même n’est qu’une option parmi d’autres. C’est un argument polémique contre ceux qui sont jugés non démocrates. D’ailleurs, il suffit d’avoir assisté aux blocages d’universités de ces dernières années pour constater qu’il n’y a pas accord d’emblée sur ce qui est démocratique. Chacun utilise l’argument démocratique comme argument dans la polémique et l’on se trouve embarqué dans une lutte de « démocraties » : celle des AG et du vote à main levée contre celle des instances universitaires et des cartes d’étudiant !

Autre chose. L’enfer, dit le proverbe, est pavé de bonnes intentions. C’est ce que redit à sa façon Max Weber en écrivant dans Le savant et le politique :

Il est une chose incontestable, et c’est même un fait fondamental de l’histoire, mais auquel nous ne rendons pas justice aujourd’hui : le résultat final de l’activité politique répond rarement à l’intention primitive de l’acteur. On peut même affirmer qu’en règle générale il n’y répond jamais et que très souvent le rapport entre le résultat final et l’intention originelle est tout simplement paradoxal.

On pense évidemment à l’éthique protestante qui aurait, selon Weber, favorisé l’esprit du capitalisme, bien que cela n’était l’intention ni de Luther ni de Calvin (qui n’avaient, et pour cause, jamais entendu parler de « capitalisme »). Les historiens, sans doute, discutent et discuteront longtemps de cette thèse. Mais on peut sans peine multiplier les exemples. Ainsi de Gaulle croyait léguer à la France, avec la constitution de la Cinquième République, ce qui lui permettrait d’échapper au « régime des partis ». Le résultat semble bien différent. Peut-on d’ailleurs échapper aux « partis » et autres « factions » ? Les guelfes et les gibelins n’étaient-ils pas d’autres « espèces » du genre « parti » ? De même que les frondeurs du milieu de notre XVIIe siècle ?

Le constat sociologique est donc que le politique est le domaine du conflit, de la polémique, éventuellement de la guerre. On peut certes s’accorder, passer convention, faire la paix un temps. Mais le conflit resurgira nécessairement, ici ou ailleurs, sur un sujet ou sur un autre, pour un « bien » ou pour un autre. L’histoire n’est pas seulement l’histoire de la lutte des classes, comme le pensait Marx. Elle est plus généralement l’histoire de la lutte, comme le dit Freund, des classes certes, mais aussi des peuples, des religions, etc. Il n’y a pas de « der des der » ! Il est vrai que certains révolutionnaires ont voulu croire qu’avec une bonne lutte finale (qui, justement parce qu’elle serait finale — la « der des der » — légitimerait pour le coup la pire des violences), on pourrait résoudre le problème une bonne fois pour toutes. C’est le « Français (Russes, etc.) encore un effort… C’est vrai, on s’entretue bien cette fois encore. Mais c’est pour la bonne cause. Après, c’est-à-dire une fois que l’on aura éliminé tous les ci-devant (koulaks, etc.), ce sera fini. Promis. Ce sera l’avenir radieux ».

Mais en réalité, on n’en finit jamais avec le conflit (qui bien sûr, ne va pas toujours jusqu’à la guerre). C’est ce que Freund analyse très bien quand il dit que l’une des trois grandes caractéristiques du politique (l’un des trois « présupposés » dans son vocabulaire), c’est la dialectique ami/ennemi. On trouve cela aussi chez Simmel qui insiste sur le rôle socialisateur du conflit. Le conflit fait lien dans la mesure où l’on s’allie contre un tiers. Gagnepain ne dit pas autre chose quand il rappelle dans Les leçons d’introduction que :

Les Romains par exemple définissaient le civis comme le contraire de l’hostis. C’est parce que l’on avait le même ennemi que l’on devenait concitoyens. On ne se ligue jamais que contre.

On trouve cela en d’autres mots passim dans les chapitres sociologiques du Vouloir Dire. Gagnepain s’inscrit ainsi bien plus dans la tradition de Simmel et de Freund, que du fonctionnalisme de Durkheim. De Weber aussi, qui insistait dans Le savant et le politique sur ce qu’il appelait « le polythéisme des valeurs ».

J’ajouterais que c’est vrai aussi bien de la politique étrangère (voir déjà l’alliance des cités autour d’Athènes contre celle autour de Sparte dans la guerre du Péloponnèse), que de la politique intérieure (où la « gauche » n’existe que dans son opposition à la « droite »), le même processus se reproduisant d’ailleurs à l’intérieur de chaque camp un peu comme une même structure se reproduit dans les fractales aux différentes échelles.

Le filon est riche. Je ne pourrai pas tout dire dans un seul billet. Quelques points pour la suite (dans le désordre, en mêlant peut-être perspectives d’action et perspectives de description, mais en insistant plus, je l’espère, sur les secondes) :

  • Weber dit que trois qualités font l’homme politique (on parlerait évidemment aussi bien de la femme politique aujourd’hui) : la passion, le sentiment de responsabilité et le coup d’œil. La première peut se rattacher à ce qu’il appelle l’éthique de conviction (il faut des convictions) ; le second à l’éthique de responsabilité (il faut se préoccuper des conséquences, y compris paradoxales, de ses décisions, bien qu’il soit évidemment impossible de tout prévoir) ; quant au coup d’œil, Weber l’associe à un certain détachement nécessaire, à un « calme intérieur de l’âme ». Je relie ça à ce que dit Gagnepain quand il parle de l’hégétique (DVD II, p. 108) : « L’autorité comme telle ne se fractionne pas et son intime complexité tient plutôt au fait qu’il faut pour l’exercer joindre tactique et probité ». Phrase sibylline comme souvent, mais que Weber me semble éclairer. On est en tous cas dans la même tradition intellectuelle.
  • A propos de la dialectique ami/ennemi. Le mot français ennemi est bien sûr polysémique. Freund rappelle que les Grecs distinguaient, eux, ἐχθρός et πολέμιος, comme les Romains distinguaient inimicus et hostis. Certes, les deux termes étaient eux-mêmes polysémiques en grec comme en latin. Inimicus dans certains textes devient ainsi synonyme d’hostis. Mais les premiers termes de ces paires renvoient nettement, selon les dictionnaires, à la détestation et à la haine, parfois dite « personnelle », alors que les second désignent l’ennemi politique, l’ennemi de guerre, sans cette connotation de détestation. Il y a une surdétermination axiologique ce me semble dans les premiers, pas dans les deuxièmes. Il y aurait sans doute beaucoup à dire et à observer là-dessus, y compris d’un point de vue clinique.
  • Parmi les convictions qui peuvent ou on pu inspirer le politique figurent les enseignements de l’Évangile (voir par exemple le colloque de novembre dernier au collège des Bernardins sur « Charles de Gaulle, chrétien, homme d’État »). Weber insiste sur la contradiction entre la morale des Évangiles (Aimez vos ennemis, Matthieu, 5, 44) et l’éthique de responsabilité, qui amène le politique dans certains cas à entrer en guerre. Mais l’Évangile, d’une part, ne dit pas : « Vous n’avez pas ni n’aurez pas d’ennemis ». Il reconnaît d’une certaine façon que l’on ne choisit pas ses ennemis (un des enseignements clefs de Freund, qui l’avait même conduit à devoir changer de directeur de thèse, Jean Hyppolite ne pouvant supporter cette idée — il était quand même dans le jury.). Mais il demande de les aimer. D’autre part, il n’est pas question de πολέμιος, mais d’ἐχθρός. Matthieu dit : ἀγαπᾶτε τοὺς ἐχθροὺς ὑμῶν (Diligite inimicos vestros). Il s’agit donc de charité (caritas, agapê) et surtout d’absence de haine envers l’echthros (l’inimicus). Il n’est pas question ici du polemios, de l’hostis. A supposer que cette différence terminologique soit pertinente dans le grec des Évangiles, il y a là aussi matière à réflexion (il est d’ailleurs fort probable que les docteurs de l’Église, tant dans la tradition orientale que dans la tradition latine y ont réfléchi : à vérifier). J’y vois en tous cas un point de départ pour une sociologie du ressentiment en lien avec ce que Nietzsche a pu dire sur le sujet dans La généalogie de la morale.
  • Il faudrait encore retravailler les deux autres « présupposés » du politique selon Freund : la dialectique du commandement et de l’obéissance (on est là dans la question de la division des rôles et des fonctions), ainsi que celle du public et du privé (pas de politique sans une séparation du public et du privé, même si la frontière n’est pas absolue, peut se déplacer : Freund insiste sur le fait qu’un pouvoir qui supprime totalement le privé en s’introduisant partout devient totalitaire, pour lui le totalitarisme est même « un gigantesque effort pour effacer la distinction entre l’individuel [le privé] et le public, par élimination de cette réalité intermédiaire […] qu’est la société civile » — encore une piste extrêmement intéressante, y compris cliniquement).
  • Il y a enfin la question de la force (ou de la violence) et de son usage, l’une des caractéristiques du politique pour les sociologues, au moins depuis la célèbre définition de Weber de l’État comme « communauté humaine qui revendique avec succès pour son propre compte le monopole de la violence physique légitime ». Cette définition a fait l’objet de moult commentaires, sans à mon sens mettre un terme à l’ambiguïté des notions de force et de violence (on trouve les deux termes dans les traductions de Weber qui parle lui de Gewaltsamkeit).
  • Et puis encore une dernière chose à propos de la « moralisation du politique ». Weber remarque que « l’éthique peut parfois jouer un rôle extrêmement fâcheux ». C’est le cas de certaines justifications morales (moralisantes) et casuistiques, mais aussi des marchandages de culpabilité (la sienne comme celle des autres), au détriment de ce qu’il appelle « l’éthique de responsabilité ». Encore une piste de réflexion et d’observations…


  1. J’en profite pour signaler son nouveau blog que je découvre du même coup et qui vaut le détour. []
  2. Non, ce n’est pas le patron du refuge bien connu de tous ceux qui ont fait le tour des Aiguilles Rouges et l’ascension du Buet ! []

À propos de « L’essence du politique » (2)

Julien Freund fait bien entendu référence à Max Weber et à sa célèbre définition de l’État moderne comme « groupement de domination de caractère institutionnel qui a cherché (avec succès) à monopoliser, dans les limites d’un territoire, la violence physique légitime comme moyen de domination et qui, dans ce but, a réuni dans les mains des dirigeants les moyens matériels de gestion » (Weber, 1959, p. 108). Il propose de distinguer les concepts de puissance, de force, de violence. Mais le lecteur reste insatisfait. Gagne-t-on, par exemple, à englober comme Freund, dans la définition de la force, les différents effets de sens possibles du mot, y compris donc la « force » d’une démonstration mathématique ?

Il vaut le coup, donc, de revenir sur ces différents concepts, moins pour réfuter l’argumentation de Freund, que pour la préciser. Nous proposons de réserver le concept de force à la force physique, démultipliée éventuellement ou secondée par différents artifices techniques. Pour être plus encore précis, il serait d’ailleurs possible de retenir la distinction que faisait Aristote entre la force comme puissance (δύναμις) et la force en action (ἐνέργεια)1 , en parlant de puissance dans le premier cas et de force dans le second. La puissance apparaît ainsi comme une force potentielle, qui n’a pas toujours besoin de s’exercer pour produire un effet (la puissance seule peut- être dissuasive sans avoir besoin de s’appliquer comme force, ainsi dans le cas de la dissuasion nucléaire). Il faut remarquer par ailleurs que la puissance et la force ainsi entendues ne sont pas spécifiques à l’homme. C’est d’ailleurs l’un des avantages de notre définition de permettre une extension de ces notions de puissance et de force au monde animal. Chaque espèce animale se caractérise en effet par une certaine puissance ou force physique, celle de l’ours adulte étant supérieure par exemple à celle de l’homme adulte. Mais la puissance dont dispose tel ou tel individu d’une espèce ne se limite pas à sa force musculaire. Une faible force musculaire peut-être compensée par la vitesse, par l’agilité, par l’usage d’un poison (venin)…

Dans le cas de l’espèce humaine, c’est l’outillage technique qui vient compenser une faiblesse relative et démultiplier la puissance : depuis le javelot, l’arc, les flèches, les sagaies, etc., jusqu’aux missiles porteurs de charges thermonucléaires, en passant par les différentes armes à feu, la fabrication de poisons, les pièges, etc. Nous arrivons ainsi à une définition de la puissance et de la force qui relève d’un domaine physico-technique, soit du domaine ergologique au sens de la théorie de la médiation. D’un point de vue clinique, puissance et force seront affaiblies par toutes les atteintes qui réduisent aussi bien la mobilité (lésions des membres, paralysies, etc.) que la capacité technique (atechnies) ou les organes de défense ou d’attaque dans le cas des autres espèces animales (glandes à venin, etc.). Une telle définition reste en accord avec les distinctions que faisait Julien Freund. C’est lui en effet qui liait déjà le concept de puissance au grec δύναμις en proposant de réfléchir à la distinction aristotélicienne entre puissance et acte :

« Il semble que la puissance appartienne à l’ordre de la virtualité plutôt qu’à celle de l’actualité. Être puissant, c’est avoir le pouvoir de, être capable de faire une chose » (Freund, 2004, p. 135).

Mais Freund ne distinguait pas suffisamment à notre sens les différents sens du pouvoir et de la capacité de faire quelque chose, y incluant aussi bien la capacité physique et technique que la capacité légale ou encore la capacité morale, celle qui résulte de l’audace (comme lorsqu’on dit de quelqu’un qu’il n’est pas capable au sens où il n’osera pas). Cette dimension morale a bien sûr son importance (elle joue un rôle dans la dissuasion par exemple : vont-ils oser ?), mais il importe de la distinguer pour l’analyse.

Voilà pour la force et la puissance. Que faire maintenant de la violence ? Cette notion de violence semble ajouter une caractéristique supplémentaire qui est celle d’une non-maîtrise, d’une démesure ou encore d’une malmesure de la force. Il y a de l’ὕβρις dans la violence, alors qu’il n’y en a pas nécessairement dans la puissance et la force en tant qu’elles relèvent seulement d’une capacité physique (anatomo-physiologique) ou technique. Ce caractère excessif de la violence est bien présent dans la définition qu’en donne Julien Freund, qui la distingue comme nous de la force et de la puissance. La violence, dit-il,

« est puissance corrompue ou déchaînée ou parfois poussée volontairement à l’outrance. Non que la force serait innocente, puisqu’il n’y a pas de puissance sans forces2 , mais elle se laisse réglementer et discipliner par des formes, c’est-à-dire elle s’exerce en général dans le respect des règles et des conventions de la légalité. La violence par contre, instinctive et passionnelle par nature, épouvante, massacre, égorge, supplicie et bouleverse tout dans la confusion. Une armée disciplinée est l’image typique de la force, une masse soulevée et tumultueuse est celle de la violence » (Freund, 2004, p. 514).

Comment expliquer ce déchaînement, cette outrance qui caractérisent la violence ? Les considérations physiques ou techniques ici ne suffisent plus. La violence, après tout, utilise les mêmes moyens que la force : saisies, coups de poings, coups de pieds, armes ou objets divers… La clinique psychiatrique nous permet de poursuivre le travail de distinction conceptuelle initié par Julien Freund en confrontant l’observateur à deux types d’outrance ou de malmesure en matière de violence : la malmesure qui pourra être observée dans la clinique des psychoses et celle qui pourra être observée dans la clinique des psychopathies.

Il est bien connu que le psychotique peut devenir violent et que cette violence peut aller jusqu’au meurtre. Dans le cas de la paranoïa, le meurtre vient clore « une montée inexorable d’une ingérence dont il faut se défendre » (Guyard, 2006, p. 601). Le paranoïaque meurtrier tue pour se débarrasser de son persécuteur. Le meurtre lui apparaît comme la seule issue dans une relation duelle et antagoniste : ou c’est lui, ou c’est moi. A un certain stade du délire de persécution, le passage à l’acte meurtrier apparaît ainsi largement prévisible (sinon fatal) de même que l’identité de la victime. Ainsi, dans le cas d’Aimée, la patiente étudiée dans la thèse de Jacques Lacan, la tentative de meurtre contre Mme Z., une des actrices de théâtre les plus appréciées du public parisien de l’époque, avait été précédée d’une élaboration délirante dans laquelle Mme Z. tenait le rôle de la persécutrice (Lacan, 1932). En opposition à ce meurtre prévisible du paranoïaque, de nombreux auteurs ont parlé de meurtre « immotivé » pour qualifier l’homicide perpétré par le schizophrène. Dans le cas de la schizophrénie, en effet, le passage à l’acte meurtrier semble intervenir sans motivation apparente. Alors que le délire paranoïaque désigne par avance la victime sous la forme du persécuteur ou de la persécutrice, le scénario du meurtre schizophrénique apparaît au premier abord incompréhensible : « les motifs conflictuels semblent assez minces » (Guyard, 2006, p. 601) et la victime n’apparaît pas désignée par avance, aussi clairement en tous cas que dans le cas de la paranoïa. L’homicide schizophrénique n’est reste pas moins intelligible :

« Que le meurtre se mue en suicide, qu’il s’exerce sur un proche, le schizophrène le construit comme un acte inexplicable, étranger, arbitraire ou encore immotivé, difficilement compréhensible parce qu’il s’inscrit dans un délire intérieur dont la violence semble aussi singulière que monstrueuse, mais dont l’issue – c’est là le point essentiel – consiste toujours à rétablir une indépendance mise à mal » (Guyard, 2006, p. 601).

La violence paranoïaque et la violence schizophrénique apparaissent ainsi, à bien des égards, comme opposées l’une à l’autre. Pourtant, toutes les deux surviennent dans des situations de conflit, pour mettre fin précisément à cette conflictualité : par la suppression de l’antagoniste ou du double persécuteur dans la paranoïa, par le rétablissement d’une indépendance compromise dans le cas de la schizophrénie. Toutes les deux nous confrontent à la question – éminemment politique – du pouvoir sur autrui. Ce pouvoir, pour le paranoïaque, n’a pas de limites : soit il est entièrement soumis au pouvoir d’autrui, soit il soumet entièrement autrui à son pouvoir. Le meurtre dans ce cas témoigne en quelque sorte du basculement : persuadé d’être persécuté et victime d’un complot, se croyant soumis, autrement dit, au pouvoir d’autrui, le paranoïaque tue pour rétablir la situation et reprendre le contrôle. Le schizophrène au contraire s’est construit un univers, certes étrange et hermétique, mais bien délimité, dans lequel il exerce un pouvoir tout puissant. Le schizophrène y est isolé et ce pouvoir n’est pas négociable. Il lui faut en exclure autrui. Le meurtre au besoin y pourvoira si une ingérence devient insupportable.

Cette violence psychotique n’est pas sans liens avec la question du commandement et de l’obéissance qui constitue selon Julien Freund l’un des « présupposés » de l’essence du politique (Freund, 2004, p. 94). Le politique suppose en effet un partage des rôles dans lequel certains commandent alors que d’autres obéissent. Il s’agit bien de rôles et de fonctions institués, nettement délimités, particulièrement, insiste Freund, dans les régimes constitutionnels où la constitution fixe, par exemple, les attributions respectives du Président de la République et du Premier Ministre. Le commandement, en matière politique, implique le recours possible à la force. Freund insiste en effet à juste titre sur le fait que le politique ne peut se définir seulement en termes juridiques : le droit ne serait qu’un système de normes en l’absence d’un pouvoir de commandement pouvant faire appel à la force. Il ne suffit pas en effet de dire le droit. Il faut encore s’assurer de l’obéissance. Mais des abus de pouvoir sont toujours possibles de la part du commandement, se traduisant par un abus dans l’usage de la force. Inversement, le commandement peut faire preuve de faiblesse soit par manque de force, soit par hésitation à y faire appel. C’est alors que surgit la violence. La violence politique, autrement dit, soit est le résultat de l’abus de pouvoir, soit constitue « le désordre qui naît de la faiblesse » (ibid., p. 721). Le premier cas est celui du despotisme (δεσποτεία), le second celui de l’anarchie, au sens étymologique du terme (ἀναρχία). Il n’y a pas lieu, bien sûr, de rechercher une correspondance terme à terme entre la malmesure psychotique du pouvoir et sa malmesure politique, même si ce n’est sans doute pas un hasard si les deux grands totalitarismes du XXe siècles furent orchestrés par des personnalités paranoïaques (Hitler et Staline). Ce qui compte c’est de repérer comment la violence peut effectivement surgir d’une malmesure dans la délimitation du pouvoir en tant que commandement.

Mais la violence peut aussi résulter d’une malmesure de l’impulsivité. Il s’agit moins alors de pouvoir et de commandement, que de tempérance vis-à-vis de ses propres désirs et d’endurance face à la frustration. Pour trouver le vocabulaire adéquat, on peut reprendre ici ce que dit Aristote au chapitre VII de L’Éthique à Nicomaque sur l’acrasie (ἀκρασία) opposée à l’ékratéia (ἐκράτεια), c’est-à-dire la tempérance et l’intempérance (opposition liée, chez Aristote, à celle de l’endurance et de la mollesse). On a ici une malmesure de l’impulsivité, un manque de σωφροσύνη (prudence, sagesse, modération dans les désirs, tempérance). Cette malmesure de l’impulsivité est à son comble dans la violence psychopathique (et non plus psychotique), celle, par exemple, d’un Jacques Mesrine, qui la décrivait très bien lui-même dans son récit autobiographique, L’instinct de mort (auquel je ne peux que renvoyer).

La célèbre définition de Weber combine donc trois dimensions : 1° – celle, ergologique de la force (plutôt que de la violence), 2° – celle, sociologique, de la légalité de son usage (à qui reconnaît-t-on socialement, dans telle ou telle société, une compétence dans l’usage de la force ? cet usage est-il réservé à certains corps de métiers ? à certaines personnes ?), 3° – celle, axiologique, du contrôle de l’impulsivité (on attend ainsi du professionnel, policier ou soldat, qu’il contrôle ses émotions, ne se laisse pas aller à la colère, au désir de vengeance… bien que — Homère le décrivait déjà très bien dans l’Iliade — le combat soit par excellence un lieu où les émotions sont poussées à leur plus haut niveau d’intensité).


Ivan le Terrible : une malmesure du pouvoir (extrait du film de Pavel Louguine, Tsar, 2009)

  1. Aristote, Métaphysique, 8, 6, 1045b 20-24. Voir aussi la Physique. []
  2. A partir des définitions que nous avons données plus haut, nous dirions plutôt qu’il n’y a pas de force sans puissance. []

mardi, 10 avril 2012

Julius Evola e o Tradicionalismo Russo

Julius Evola

e o Tradicionalismo Russo

 por Aleksandr Dugin

Ex: http://legio-victrix.blogspot.com/


1) A Descoberta de Evola na Rússia

Os trabalhos de Julius Evola foram descobertos nos anos 60 pelo grupo de intelectuais esotéricos e anti-comunistas conhecidos como “os dissidentes da direita”. Eles compunham um pequeno círculo de pessoas que conscientemente se negavam a participar da “vida cultural” da URSS e que, ao invés disso, tinham escolhido uma vida subterânea para si. A disparidade entre o cultura Soviética presente e a verdadeira realidade Soviética foi quase que totalmente o motivo que os levou a buscar os princípios fundamentais que poderiam explicar as origens daquela terrível idéia absolutista. Foi pela sua recusa do Comunismo que eles descobriram certos trabalhos de autores anti-modernos e tradicionalistas: acima de tudo, os livros de Rene Guenon e Julius Evola. Duas personalidades centrais animavam este grupo – o filósofo islâmico Geidar Djemal e o poeta não-conformista Eugene Golovine. Graças a eles, esses “dissidents da direita” souberam os nomes e as idéias do dois maiores tradicionalistas do século. Nos anos 70, uma das primeiras traduções de um trabalho de Evola (A Tradição Hermética) apareceu e foi distribuída dentro de um grupo, de acordo com os métodos do Samizdat [1]. No entanto, as traduções originais eram particularmente ruins em qualidade, porque elas foram feitas por amadores incompetentes muito distantes do grupo de verdadeiros intelectuais tradicionalistas.

Em 1981, uma tradução do Heidnische Imperialismus apareceu de maneira similar, como o único livro desse tipo disponível na Livraria Lenin em Moscow. Desta vez, a distribuição pelo Samizdathavia se tornado muito maior e a qualidade da tradução era muito melhor. Pouco a pouco eles distanciaram a verdadeira corrente tradicionalista do anti-comunismo, e a aproximaram do anti-modernismo, extendendo a sua negação da existência Soviética para a rejeição do mundo moderno, de maneira muito próxima à visão tradicionalista integral. Deve notar-se que as idéias tradicionalistas em questão, neste ponto particular, foram completamente removidas dos outros grupos de “dissidentes da direita”, que geralmente eram Cristãos ortodoxos, monarquistas e nacionalistas. Nesta época, Evola era mais popular entre aqueles interessados no espiritualismo em sentido amplo: praticantes de yoga, teosofistas [2], psiquistas [3], e daí em diante.

Durante a Perestroika, todos os tipos de dissidência anti-comunista se manifestaram e dos “dissidentes da direita” vieram as ideologias políticas e culturais da Direita atual: nacionalistas, nostálgicos, anti-liberais e anti-Ocidentais. Neste contexto e depois do desenvolvimente de idéias estritamente tradicionalistas, como resultado do Glasnost, os nomes de Guenon e Evola foram introduzidos no conjunto cultural russo. Os primeiros trabalhos de Evola apareceram nos anos 90, nas amplamente lidas partes da mídia conhecidamente “patriótica” ou “conservadora” e o assunto do tradicionalismo tornou-se tema de virulentas polêmicas e era um assunto importante para a Direita Russa como um todo. Periódicos como Elementy, Nach Sovremennik, Mily Anguel, Den, etc, começaram a publicar fragmentos dos escritos de Evolas, ou artigos inspirados nele, ou em que seu nome e citações apareciam.Pouco a pouco o campo “conservador” veio a ter uma estrutura ideológica que produziu cisões entre os velhos nostáligcos e monarquistas da Direita e os mais abertos não conformistas e participantes da Direita menos ortodoxa (algumas vezes chamados de “novye pravye”, em russo, pode-se estar inclinado a fazer um paralelo com a “nouvelle droite”, mas foi um fenômeno bem diferente como um todo em relação com a ND européia). Pode-se categorizar este segundo grupo de patriotas como sendo parte da “Terceira Via” ou “Nacional-Revolucionários” e por aí em diante. O ponto de separação se dá exatamente sobre a aceitação ou rejeição da idéias de Evola, ou talvez mais apropriadamente, da idéias de Evola que não poderiam ser consideradas naturalmente “conservadoras” ou “reacionárias”, como a idéia de “Revolução Conservadora” e de “Revolta Contra o Mundo Moderno”.

Recentemente, o primeiro livro “Heidnische Imperialismus” teve 50.000 cópias publicadas. Até mesmo um programa de televisão voltado a Evola foi feito por uma canal popular. Então, pode-se ver que a descoberta de Evola pela Rússia foi feita em uma escala bastante ampla. Ele, que uma vez constitui o núcleo intelectual hiper-marginal da Rússia, antes da Perestroika, se tornou agora um fenômeno político e ideológico considerável. Mas é bem claro que Evola escreveu seus livros e formulou suas idéias num contexto temporal, cultural, histórico e étnico bem diferente. Isso, então, torna-se um problema: quais partes da filosofia de Evola são relevantes para a Rússia moderna e quais partes precisam ser trabalhadas, melhoradas ou mesmo rejeitadas, nessas circunstâncias? Esta pergunta necessita de uma rápida análise comparando e contrastando o tradicionalismo sagrado de Evola e o fenômeno político estritamente russo.

2) Contra o Ocidente Moderno

Desde o começo, se torna óbvio que a rejeição do mundo mercenário profano moderno, manifestado na Civilização Ocidental durante os últimos séculos, é comum tanto para Evola quanto para a totalidade da tradição intelectual da Eslavofilia Russa. Autores russos como Homyakov, Kirievsky, Aksakov, Leontiev e Danilevsky (entre os filósofos), assim como Dostoevsky, Gogol e Merejkovsky (entre os romancistas), criticaram o mundo Ocidental quase na mesma linguagem em que o fez Evola. Pode-se observar que todos eles possuiam o mesmo ódio pelo governo dos mafiosos, ou seja, o sistema democrático moderno, e que eles consideravam este sistema como degradação espiritual e profanação total. Similarmente, pode-se observar o mesmo diagnóstico para essas doenças do mundo moderno - a Franco-Maçonaria Profana, o judaismo depravado, o avanço da plebe, a deificação da “razão” – em Evola e na cultura “conservadora” russa. Obviamente, a tendência reacionária aqui é comum a ambos, então a crítica de Evola do Ocidente está totalmente de acordo com, e é aceitável para a linha de pensamentos do conservadorismo russo.

Mais freqüentemente do que não [freqüentemente], pode-se ver que as críticas de Evola estão mais proximamente relacionadas com a mentalidade russa do que com uma mais amplamente européia – o mesmo tipo de generalização, a invocação freqüente de objetivos mitológicos e místicos, a noção distinta de que o mundo espiritual interno é organicamente separado das realidades imediatas modernas da perversão e do desvio. Em geral, a tradição conservadora russa de hodiernamente explicar eventos históricos num sentido mitológico, é de alguma forma, obrigatória. O apelo ao sobrenatural/irracional, aqui, está em perfeita congruência com o pensamento russo, que faz da explicação racional a exceção, e não a regra.

Pode-se notar a influência que os conservadores russos exeerceram em Evola: nos seus trabalhos ele freqüentemente cita Dostoevsky, Merejkovsky (quem ele conhecia pessoalmente) e muitos outros autores russos. Na outra mão, as frequëntes referências que ele faz à Malynsky e Leon de Poncins carregam parcialmente a tradição contra-revolucionária tão típica do Ser europeu. Pode-se citar também as referências que ele faz a Serge Nilus, o compilador do famoso “Protocolos dos Sábios de Sião”, que Evola reeditou na Itália.

Ao mesmo tempo, fica claro que Evola conhecia relativamente pouco sobre os meios conservadores russos, e, de fato, ele nem mesmo estava particularmente interessado neles, devido à sua idiossincrasia anti-cristã. A respeito da tradição Ortodoxa ele fez apenas alguns insignificantes comentários. Mesmo assim, a semelhança entre a sua posição sobre a crise do mundo moderno e o anti-modernismo do autores russos é dada, amplamente, pela comunidade de reações orgânicas – Grandes Homens e “indivíduos”, no caso de Evola e heróis, no caso dos russos. Mas graças à espontaneidade das convergências anti-modernas, a gravidade dos desacordos de Evola, se tornam muito mais interessantes e muito mais críticos.

Em qualquer nível, as interpretações de Evola se encaixam perfeitamente no quadro de ideologia moderna da “novye pravye”, [isso ocorre] tão amplamente, que ela [novye pravye] agrega mais à sua visão da degradação da modernidade, aplicando, algumas vezes, as suas idéias [de Evola] mais globalmente, mais radicalmente e mais profundamente. Deste modo, as teorias de Evola são muito bem aceitas na Rússia moderna, onde o anti-Ocidentalismo é um fator político-ideológico extremamente potente. 

3) Roma e a Terceira Roma

Um aspecto particular do pensamento de Evola é sentido pelos russos como de uma extrema e iminente importância: sua exaltação do Ideal Imperial. Roma representa o ponto principal da visão-de-mundo de Evola. Este poder sagrado vivente, que se manifestou por todo o Império era, para Evola, a própria essência da herança do Ocidente tradicional. Para Evola, as ruínas do Palácio de Nero e dos prédios romanos eram como um testamento direto de uma santidade orgânica e física, da qual a integridade e continuaidade fora aniquilada pelo “castelo” kafkiano [4] do Vaticano Católico Guelfo.

A sua linha de pensamento Guibelina era clara: Imperium contra a Igreja, Roma contra o vaticano, a sacralidade iminente e orgânica contra as abstrações sentimentais e devocionais da fé, implicitamente dualista e Farisaica[5].

Mas uma linha de pensamento similar, aparentemente, é naturalmente sentida pelos russos, de quem o destino histórico sempre esteve profundamente ligado ao [Ideal] do Imperium. Esta noção estava dogmaticamente enraizada na concepção Ortodoxa da filosofia staret[6] – “Moscow: A Terceira Roma” – Deve-se tomar nota que a “Primeira Roma” nesta interpretação cíclica Ortodoxa não era a Roma Cristã, mas a Roma Imperial, porque a “Segunda Roma” (ou “a Nova Roma”) era Constantinopla, a capital do Império Cristão. Então a mesma idéia de “Roma” mantida pelos Ortodoxos Russos, corresponde ao entendimento de sacralidade como a importância daquilo que é Sagrado e assim, a necessária e inseparável “sinfonía” entre autoridade espiritual e o reino temporal. Para a ortodoxia tradicional, a separação católica entre o Rei e o Papa é inimaginável e beira a blasfêmia, este conceito é até mesmo chamado de “heresia Latina”.

Mais uma vez, pode-se ver a perfeita convergência entre o dogma de Evola e o pensamento comum da mentalidade conservadora russa. E outra vez mais, a clara exaltação espiritual do Imperium nos livros de Evola, é de inestimável valor para os russos, pois isto é o que eles veem como a sua verdadeira identidade tradicional. O “imperialismo sinfônico”, ou melhor, “Imperialismo Guibelino”.

Existe um outro detalhe importante que merece ser mencionado aqui. É sabido que o “Autor do Terceiro Reich” Artur Müller van den Bruck, foi profundamente influenciado pelos escritos de Fiodor Dostoievsky, para quem o conceito de “Terceira Roma” era vitalmente significativo. Pode-se ver mesma visão escatológica de van den Bruck do “Último Império”, nascido da convergência metafórica entre as idéias dos montanistas paracléticos[7] e as profecias de Joachim de Flora[8].

Van den Bruck, de quem as idéias eram algumas vezes citadas por Evola, adaptou o seu conceito de “Terceira Roma” da tradição Ortodoxa russa, e aplicou na Alemanha, onde ele foi ulteriormente trabalhado espiritual e socialmente pelos Nacional-Socialistas. Um fato interessante é que Erich Müller, o protegé de Nikisch[9], que fora grandemente inspirado por van den Bruck, comentou certa vez que o Primeiro Reich havia sido Católico[10], o Segundo Reich, Protestante[11], o Terceiro Reich deveria ser, exatamente, Ortodoxo!

Mas o próprio Evola participou amplamente nos debates intelectuais dos círculos revoluionários-conservadores alemães (ele era membro do “Herrenklub” de von Gleichen, que era a continuação do “Juniklub” fundado por van den Bruck), onde assuntos similares eram discutidos de uma maneira muito vívida. Agora é fácil ver outra maneira em que a mentalidade conservadora russa está ligada às teorias de Evola. Obviamente, não é possível dizer que as suas idéias, nesses problemas particulares, eram idênticas, mas ao mesmo tempo, existem conexões extraordinárias entre os dois que podem ajudar a explicar a assimilação das idéias de Evola para a mentalidade russa, que possui visões muito menos “extravagantes” do que aquelas pertencentes à Europa Conservadora Tradicional, que é majoritariamente Católica e Nacionalista nos dias de hoje, e raramente Imperialista.


[1] Samizdat foi um sistema na antiga URSS em que os livros oficialmente “impermissíveis” circulavam pelo país; estes eram cópias de cópias e não tinham boa qualidade, mas eles tendiam a chegar ao seu objetivo.

[2] Um escola religiosa/filosófica fundada pela ocultista russa Helena Blavatsky.

[3] Um conceito teosófico relacionado à todos os fenômenos mentais; C.G. Jung também o discutiu ocasinalmente.

[4] Para aqueles que não estão familiarizados com o trabalho de Kafka, esta é uma referência para o seu livro chamado “O Castelo”, que é sobre um homem que contrai o que deveria ser uma trabalho relativamente fácil num lugar distante, fazendo o levantamento das terras de um nobre local, mas que não consegue começar ou muito menos completar o seu trabalho, devido à burocracia imposta pelo seu próprio empregador (que ele nunca conhece pessoalmente, apenas por um representante ou representante de um representante) e que se frustra muito pelo fato de que o imenso e opressivo castelo do Conde pode ser visto de qualquer parte da cidade, mas ele não consegue nunca ir até lá para começar a sua tarefa. Obviamente, esta é uma acusação metafórica contra a totalidade do sistema judaico-cristão e como ele se relaciona com uma aparentemente impossível salvação. Da mesma forma, “Guelfo” se refere à uma coalisão alemã/italiana da Idade Média que apoiava a casa real de Guelfo contra a Dinastia Imperial Alemã dos Guibelinos, que era hostil ao Papa e ao Catolicismo.

[5] Referete aos Fariseus, hipocrisia, duplicidade, falsidade, fingimento.

[6] Os starets eram conselheiros espirituais, mas não sacerdotes: Rasputin poderia ser considerado como um.

[7] Os montanistas foram os precursors das seitas pentecostais modernas, i.e., aqueles que acreditam em revelações divinas pessoais e falar em linguas diferentes.

[8] de Flora era o Abade de Corazzo que completou um ensaio bastante presciente sobre a “era da razão”, por volta de 1200, onde ele escreveu “no novo dia, homens não dependerão da fé, porque tudo será fundamentado no conhecimento e na razão.”

[9] Ernst Nikisch, um nacionalista alemão da mesma época.

[10] o Sacro Império Romano-Germânico

[11] a Prússia sob o governo de Frederico, o Grande

vendredi, 06 avril 2012

Homo comicus : ou l'intégrisme de la rigolade par François L'Yvonnet

Homo comicus : ou l'intégrisme de la rigolade par François L'Yvonnet

Ce pamphlet est né d’un agacement, celui de voir parader sans vergogne, à longueur de médias, une ribambelle d’humoristes d’un nouveau genre, moins amuseurs que donneurs de leçons, moins « comiques » qu’agents autoproclamés du Bien. Ils éreintent mais sans risque, ils accusent, ridiculisent, frappent de dérision sans ménager la moindre possibilité de défense. Des procureurs hargneux, dans des procès joués d’avance. Le sérieux, voilà l’ennemi. Ils règnent à la radio, à la télévision, dans la presse écrite, publient des livres, font des films, achètent des théâtres… C’est une nouvelle féodalité, avec ses prébendes et ses privilèges. C’est un nouvel intégrisme, celui de la rigolade. Il faut rire de tout mais avec eux. Le rire, « leur » rire est la norme. À les écouter, ils seraient l’actuelle incarnation de la liberté d’expression et de toutes les valeurs réunies de la démocratie. On croit rêver… Leurs saillies sont pourtant d’une incroyable platitude et leurs prêchi-prêcha, troussés à la va-vite, épargnent les vrais puissants. Curieuse époque que la nôtre, qui voit le « bas-bouffon » tenir lieu de conscience et de pensée.

François L’Yvonnet est professeur de philosophie et éditeur (L’Herne et Albin-Michel). Derniers ouvrages parus : Regards sur le sport avec Benjamin Pichery (Le Pommier, 2010) ; Cahier « Michel Serres » avec Christiane Frémont (L’Herne, 2010) ; Louis Massignon, Écrits mémorables avec Christian Jambet et François Angelier, 2 volumes (Robert-Laffont, coll. « Bouquins », 2009).

François L'Yvonnet, Homo comicus : ou l'intégrisme de la rigolade, Mille et une nuits, 2012.
Commande possible sur Am

Trouvé sur: http://www.lepetitcelinien.com/

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La Germania dionisiaca di Alfred Bäumler

La Germania dionisiaca di Alfred Bäumler


Ex: http://www.centrostudilaruna.it/


Baeumler_Alfred.jpgAlfred Baeumler fu il primo filosofo tedesco a dare di Nietzsche un’interpretazione politica. Prima di Jaspers e di Heidegger, che ne furono influenzati, egli vide nella Germania “ellenica” pensata da Nietzsche la raffigurazione eroica di una rivoluzione dei valori primordiali incarnati dalla Grecia arcaica, il cui perno filosofico e ideologico veniva ravvisato nel controverso testo sulla Volontà di potenza. Asistematico nella forma, ma coerentissimo nella sostanza.

In una serie di scritti che vanno dal 1929 al 1964, Baeumler ingaggiò una lotta culturale per ricondurre Nietzsche nel suo alveo naturale di pensatore storico e politico, sottraendolo ai tentativi di quanti – allora come oggi -, insistendo su interpretazioni metafisiche o psicologizzanti, avevano inteso e intendono disinnescare le potenzialità dirompenti della visione del mondo nietzscheana, al fine di ridurla a un innocuo caso intellettuale.

Ora questi scritti di Baeumler vengono riuniti e pubblicati dalle Edizioni di Ar sotto il titolo L’innocenza del divenire, in un’edizione di alto valore filologico e documentale, ma soprattutto filosofico e storico-politico. Un evento culturale più unico che raro nel panorama dell’editoria colta italiana, così spesso dedita alle rimasticature piuttosto che allo scientifico lavoro di scavo in profondità.

Inoltre, l’edizione in parola reca in appendice una postilla di Marianne Baeumler, consorte del filosofo, in cui si chiariscono i temi della famosa polemica innescata da Mazzino Montinari, il curatore di un’edizione italiana delle opere di Nietzsche rimasto famoso per i suoi tenacissimi sforzi di edulcorarne il pensiero, sovente deformandone i passaggi culminali.


La polemica, vecchia di decenni (data dall’insano innamoramento della “sinistra” per Nietzsche, tra le pieghe dei cui aforismi cercò invano consolazione per l’insuperabile dissesto culturale e ideologico, precipitato nella sindrome del “pensiero debole”), è tuttavia ancora di attualità, stante il mai superato stallo del progressismo, non ancora pervenuto ad un’ onesta analisi del proprio fallimento epocale e quindi dedito da anni a operazioni di strumentale verniciatura della cultura europea del Novecento. È anche per questo che il breve scritto di Marianne Baeumler acquista un particolare significato, anche simbolico, di raddrizzamento dell’ esegesi nietzscheana, dopo lunghe stagioni di incontrollate manomissioni interpretative.


Effettivamente, una falsificazione di Nietzsche è esistita – soprattutto in relazione alla Volontà di potenza ma non dalla parte di Elisabeth Nietzsche, bensì proprio di coloro che, come Montinari e Colli, si studiarono di trasformare l’eroismo tragico espresso da Nietzsche con ruggiti leonini nel belato di un agnello buonista : uno sguardo alla postfazione del curatore e traduttore Luigi Alessandro Terzuolo, basterà per rendersi conto, testi alla mano, della volontà di mistificazione ideologica lucidamente perseguita dai soliti noti, con esiti di aperta e democratica contraffazione.


Negli scritti (studi, postfazioni, saggi estratti da altre opere) raccolti in L’innocenza del divenire, Alfred Baeumler misura la forza concettuale di Nietzsche in relazione alla storia, al carattere culturale germanico e al destino della cultura europea. Egli individua come ultimo elemento di scissione lo spirito borghese, che si è inserito sotto la dialettica hegeliana per operare una sciagurata sovrammissione tra mondo classico antico e cristianesimo, ottenendo così un nefasto obnubilamento tanto del primo quanto del secondo. Un procedimento, questo, che Nietzsche riteneva decisivo per la perdita di contatto tra cultura europea e identità originaria. Una catastrofe del pensiero che si sarebbe riverberata sul destino europeo, consegnato al moralismo e sottratto all’autenticità, per cie prima speculative e poi politiche. Solo in quella nuova Ellade che doveva essere la Germania, preconizzata prima dalla cultura romantica e dalla sua sensibilità per le tradizioni mitiche popolari, poi da Holderlin e infine da Nietzsche, si sarebbe realizzata, secondo Baeumler, la riconquista dell’unità dell’uomo, finalmente liberato dalle intellettualizzazioni razionaliste e ricondotto alla verità primaria fatta di mente, di corpo, di volontà, di lotta ordinatrice, di eroismo dionisiaco, di legami di storia e di natura, di verginità di istinti e di slanci, di serena convivenza con la tragicità del destino, di oltrepassamenti verso una visione del mito come anima religiosa primordiale, come superumana volontà di potenza. Col suo duro lavoro di studioso, è come se Baeumler ci restituisse, insomma, il vero Nietzsche. Il profeta del ritorno alle radici di popolo della Grecia pre-socratica, quando valeva la prima devozione agli dèi dell’Europa, secondo quanto cantò Holderlin, in un brano ripreso non a caso da Baeumler nel suo Hellas und Germanien uscito nel 1937 : “Solo al cospetto dei Celesti i popoli / ubbidiscono al sacro ordine gerarchico / erigendo templi e città.. .”.


La pubblicazione degli scritti di Baeumler – dovuta all’unica casa editrice italiana che si stia metodicamente interessando al filosofo tedesco, volutamente occultato in omaggio ai perduranti blocchi mentali – si inquadra nello sforzo culturale di porre termine, per quanto possibile, alla stagione delle dogmatiche falsificatorie. Un decisivo documento che va in questa stessa direzione è, tra l’altro, il recente lavoro di Domenico Losurdo su Nietzsche come ribelle aristocratico. Pubblicare Baeumler – come le Ar hanno fatto anche coi precedenti Estetica e Nietzsche filosofo e politico – significa lasciare tracce eloquenti di quel contro-pensiero intimamente radicato nell’anima europea e incardinato sulla denuncia del modernismo progrossista come finale maschera del caos, che oggi o viene semplicemente ignorato per deficienza di mezzi intellettuali, o viene piegato alle esigenze del potere censorio, oppure viene relegato tra le voci della dissonanza. Il che, nella logica del pensiero unico, significa condanna e diffamazione.


* * *


Tratto da Linea del 1 dicembre 2003.

dimanche, 11 mars 2012

La balkanisation du Système - Ernst Jünger et la fin des temps

La balkanisation du Système - Ernst Jünger et la fin des temps 

ParTomislav Sunic

La  locution "la fin des temps" n'est pas sans rappeler les prédictions bibliques d'un cours du temps linéaire qui devrait conduire à la fin du monde. Cette idée semble être typique chez les gens dont la pensée est alimentée par le mental monothéiste et  sémitique, comme l’annonce la  Révélation présentée à la fin de l’Apocalypse  (XXI, 1-2).  Et j’ai vu un nouveau ciel et une nouvelle terre ; car l’ancien ciel et l’ancienne terre avaient disparu, et la mer n’est plus. J’ai vu aussi la ville sainte, la Nouvelle Jérusalem, qui descendait du ciel, d’auprès de Dieu, et préparée comme une épouse parée pour son mari.

Aujourd'hui, on observe cet esprit monothéiste dans la croyance au progrès économique, avec ses retombées idéologiques: le multiracialisme et le libéralisme apatride. Mais on rencontre également dans l’héritage européen la notion de fin des temps, bien que ces temps aient une nature cyclique. Dans ses ouvrages, Ernst Jünger décrit les temps du destin par rapport aux temps technocratiques, linéaires et mesurables du Système. Est-ce que la situation en Europe d’aujourd’hui peut être encore pire que ce qu’elle est déjà ? "Le destin peut être deviné, senti, et craint, mais il ne peut jamais être connu. Si cela devait changer, l’homme mènerait la vie d'un prisonnier qui connaît l'heure de son exécution »  (1). Par conséquent,  afin de mettre en place un avenir prévisible, le Système doit exiger de ses citoyens de se comporter comme des détenus dociles dans le couloir de la mort.

Pour beaucoup d’Européens - et surtout pour les anciens critiques du Système communiste -,  le communisme fut le symbole de la fin des temps qui devait fatalement exclure tous les temps ultérieurs. Le cours du temps dans le communisme semblait être bloqué pour toujours. Après le désastre de 1945, de nombreux Européens avaient commencé à croire non seulement à la fin d'un monde mais à la fin du monde tout court. Pour les Européens de la postmodernité, la même question se pose : vit-on les temps finaux européens, ou est-on témoin de la fin des temps mondiaux? Il se peut que les temps européens soient bien révolus depuis longtemps et il se peut que tous les Européens vivent depuis des décennies dans un profond déclin racial. Peut-être sont-ils arrivés à la fin d’une époque qui n’a pas encore reçu son nom? Le problème réside dans le fait que les temps du Système actuel, quoique d’une brièveté certaine dans le cadre de la grande histoire, possèdent une durée pénible pour un rebelle. Comment doit-on évaluer ces temps-là?

La notion du cours du temps, surtout en cas d'urgence, est très bien ressentie dans les Balkans, une partie de l'Europe qui est constamment sous influences tectoniques majeures. La balkanisation ne signifie pas seulement la dislocation géopolitique ; elle renvoie également à une forme de la dégénérescence d’identité, où se mélangent et se confondent diverses identités politiques, religieuses et raciales qui sont constamment remplacées par de nouvelles identités venues d’ailleurs. Toutefois, compte tenu des catastrophes qui s’approchent à grands pas de l’Europe, toute balkanisation peut servir de leçon pour aiguiser le talent de survie. Ce talent exige de pratiquer la vie en solitaire, et d’être complètement détaché de tous les liens politiques avec le monde d'aujourd'hui. En cas de nécessité, on devrait, comme ce fut habituel chez les chouans vendéens pendant la Révolution française, ou chez les guérilléros espagnols pendant l’occupation napoléonienne, ou bien encore chez les  haïdouks balkaniques pendant l’occupation turque du XVIe au XIXe siècle, vivre comme des paysans mais, en cas d'urgence, être prêt à rapidement prendre les armes.

Aujourd'hui, cependant, il ya deux formes opposées de la balkanisation. D'un côté, l’Europe orientale continue toujours d’être en proie à la haine interethnique entre ses peuples. D'un autre côté, on observe en Europe occidentale une guerre larvée avec les non-Européens. Or à la lumière des vagues d’immigration en provenance du Tiers-Monde, tous les Européens sont censés devenir de bons Balkaniques : pas forcément dans le sens négatif, mais dans un sens positif qui sous-entend l’esprit de la déterritorialisation locale, et qui est seulement possible dans une Europe d’Empire. Celui qui vit au milieu d'animaux sauvages devrait devenir un animal, et peu importe qu’il habite Paris, Washington ou Francfort. Comme le sociologue italien Vilfredo Pareto a justement prophétisé il y a cent ans: «Celui qui devient l'agneau va se trouver bientôt un loup qui le mangera." (2). Or le talent de vie dans la fin des temps exigera donc des loups européens d’apprendre à revêtir les habits de brebis. 

On devrait se rappeler la figure de l’Anarque d’Ernst Jünger dans son roman Eumeswil. Le protagoniste, Martin Venator, vit sa double vie dans une société postmoderne et multiculturelle à coté de la casbah d’Eumeswil. Or l’Anarque n'est ni rebelle, ni dissident, ni anarchiste quoiqu’au moment donné, il puisse revêtir toutes ces trois figures à la fois.  D’ailleurs, l’Anarque semble s’être très bien inséré dans le système de la pensée unique et de l’autocensure du Système. Il attend patiemment  son moment ; il va frapper seulement quand le moment sera mûr. Ce roman de Jünger peut être considéré comme le Bildungsroman pour la génération actuelle de jeunes Européens dont le rôle didactique peut leur faciliter le choix de la figure du rebelle.

L’arrivée en masse d’immigrés d’une culture et d’une race étrangère à l'Europe exige de tous les  Européens de bien réfléchir à quelle figure de comportement choisir, c’est à dire à quelle nouvelle identité jouer. Historiquement, les figures du rebelle nationaliste en Europe centrale et orientale n'ont jamais eu d’effet convergent sur les peuples européens. Elles ont été nuisibles et doivent donc être rejetées. Toutes les formes et figures de la rébellion – que ce soit l’appartenance à sa tribu ou à son Etat aux dépens de son voisin blanc, comme en témoignent les guerres entre la Pologne et l'Allemagne, entre les Serbes et les  Croates, entre les Irlandais et les Anglais – semblent devenues dérisoires aujourd’hui. L’Europe balkanisée, avec ses figures rebelles des nationalismes exclusifs, ne fait que donner davantage de légitimité au projet multiracial du Système. Toute figure de dissident au Système, comme fut autrefois la figure de l’anarchiste ou du partisan est désormais vouée à l’échec dans un Système possédant des moyens de surveillance totale. Ce qui reste maintenant aux nouveaux rebelles, c’est le devoir de se définir comme héritiers européens, nonobstant le pays où ils vivent, que ce soit en Australie, en Croatie, au Chili, ou en Bavière.

Compte tenu de l'afflux massif d’immigrés  non-européens, les Européens ne peuvent plus s’offrir le luxe de l’esprit de clocher. Le danger imminent de leur mort peut les aider à se débarrasser de leur  particularisme territorial. En effet, qu’est-ce que cela veut dire aujourd’hui être Allemand, Français, Américain, vu le fait que  plus de 10 pour cent d’Allemands et de Français et plus de 30 pour cent des Américains sont d'origine non-blanche?
Le génocide communiste ou le multiculturalisme génocidaire

Afin de s’appréhender soi-même et de se projeter par-dessus Le Mur du Temps on devrait faire un parallèle entre l’ancienne terreur communiste et la mort lente actuelle, causée par la dilution du fonds génétique des Européens. Dans ce contexte, les tueries gigantesques menées par les communistes en Europe orientale contre leurs ennemis suite à la fin de la Deuxième Guerre mondiale peuvent servir d’avertissement afin de mieux comprendre la situation actuelle menant à la mort de l’Europe. Dans le sillage de la terreur déclenchée par les communistes après la Seconde Guerre mondiale, les raisons idéologiques, telle que la «lutte des classes», jouaient un rôle mineur. Dans la psychologie des communistes, beaucoup plus important fut leur ressentiment pathologique vis-à-vis de leurs adversaires anticommunistes et nationalistes qui étaient plus intelligents et avaient davantage d’intégrité morale. Un semblable ressentiment est typique des immigrés non-européens. Bien entendu, ils ne sont pas encore en mesure de convertir leur haine contre les Européens blancs en conflit militaire mais leur nombre croissant peut facilement changer la donne.

Suite à  la Seconde Guerre mondiale, les génocides communistes ont eu une influence catastrophique sur l'évolution culturelle et génétique de toute l’Europe orientale. La classe moyenne ainsi qu’un grand nombre de gens intelligents furent simplement supprimés, ne pouvant transmette leur patrimoine génétique, leur intelligence et leur créativité à leur progéniture.  Alors, où sont donc les parallèles avec le monde multiracial d’aujourd’hui en Europe ? Force est de constater  que tout ce que les communistes ne pouvaient pas parachever par la terreur en Europe orientale est en train de se faire maintenant d’une manière soft par l'actuelle "super classe" libérale et cela par le truchement de son idéologie de rechange, le « multiculturalisme ». L'afflux constant de non-Européens est en train d’affaiblir le fonds génétique des Européens, menant à leur mort douce où les lignes entre l’ami et l’ennemi s’effacent complètement. On s’aperçoit clairement de l'impact brutal de l'idéologie de l'égalitarisme et de sa nouvelle retombée dans le Système, qui enseigne, aujourd’hui comme autrefois, que tous les hommes doivent être égaux et par conséquent interchangeables à volonté. 

Le multiculturalisme est la nouvelle forme du balkanisme, à  savoir une idéologie servant aujourd’hui d’ersatz au communisme discrédité. En effet, le multiculturalisme utilise des moyens plus subtils que le communisme quoique leurs effets soient identiques.  L’esprit communiste et l’esprit multiculturel sont très populaires auprès des gens du Tiers-Monde, mais également  auprès des intellectuels de gauche du Système, toujours à l'affût d’un nouveau romantisme politique. Le communisme a disparu en Europe orientale parce qu'en pratique, il a su beaucoup mieux réaliser ses principes égalitaires en Europe occidentale quoique sous un autre signifiant et sous un autre vocable. Le Système, soit sous son vocable communiste, soit sous son vocable multiculturel, croit que toutes les nations européennes sont remplaçables au sein du Système supra-étatique et supra-européen.
Les nouvelles figures du rebelle

 Les responsables de la balkanisation de l'Europe et de l'Amérique sont les capitalistes. Il est dans leur intérêt d'obtenir une armée de travailleurs de réserve en provenance du Tiers-Monde. Ils savent pertinemment que les travailleurs non-européens importés en Europe n'appartiennent pas forcément à l'élite intellectuelle de leurs pays d'origine, que leur conscience sociale n'est souvent qu'embryonnaire et qu'ils n'ont généralement aucun sens du destin européen. C'est pourquoi ils sont plus aisément manipulables. Leur marchand n'a pas d'identité, non plus. Un banquier allemand ou un ex-communiste croate devenu spéculateur dans l’immobilier ne se soucie guère de sa résidence ni de la leur  - tant qu'il gagne de l'argent. Même le père fondateur du capitalisme, l’infâme Adam Smith a écrit: «Le marchand n'est pas forcément citoyen d’aucun pays"  (3).  Par conséquent, le nouvel Anarque, à savoir le nouveau rebelle, ne doit pas être choqué par la nouvelle sainte alliance entre le Commissaire et le Commerçant, entre les grandes entreprises et la Gauche caviar. La Gauche est en faveur de l'immigration de masse parce que la figure de l’immigré tient lieu aujourd'hui du prolétaire d’antan.  Les capitalistes d’une part, et les « antifas », les pédérastes, les militants des droits de l’homme et les militants chrétiens de l'autre, sont désormais devenus les porte-parole de l'abolition des frontières et les haut-parleurs d’une Europe multiraciale et sans racines. Le capitaliste vise à réduire l'État-providence, car chaque État lui coûte cher. Un antifa veut abolir l'État, parce que tout État, lui rappelle « la bête immonde du fascisme ».

L'opinion s’est largement répandue que l'islam est l’ennemi principal de l’Europe car cette religion est prétendument violente et dangereuse. Soit. Mais on doit distinguer entre la religion et l'origine raciale. En outre, il est  à souligner que ni l'Ancien Testament ni l’Évangile ne sont une prose paisible. La critique de la religion n'est donc pas appropriée quand on fustige l'immigration de masse. En l’occurrence, la plupart des 30 millions d'immigrés illégaux en Amérique sont de pieux catholiques venus d'Amérique latine, mais ils ne sont pas de souche européenne !  Ils appartiennent à une autre race et à une autre culture.

Comment façonner un nouveau type de rebelle blanc ? Le nouvel Anarque doit chercher dans sa culture et sa race ses points de départ. La notion et la réalité de la race ne peuvent être niées, même si le terme de race est aujourd’hui criminalisé à outrance par les medias. L’hérédité  est considérée par les scribes académiques du Système avec horreur et dégoût, bien qu’ils sachent tous, surtout lorsque l'état d'urgence sera proclamé, qu’ils vont aller se réfugier du côté de leur propre tribu et de  leur propre race.  Force est de constater qu’on peut changer sa religion, ses habitudes, ses opinions politiques, son terroir, sa nationalité, voire même son passeport, mais on ne peut jamais échapper à son hérédité. La récente guerre dans les Balkans nous a montré de façon limpide que lors de l’instauration de l’état d’urgence, les anciens apatrides croates et pro-yougoslaves n’avaient pas hésité à devenir des ultras Croates - par défaut. Gare à celui qui oublie ses racines. C’est l’Autre qui va vite les lui rappeler. (4).

Toutefois, la conscience raciale dans la fin de nos temps ne peut être considérée comme un outil complet par le nouveau rebelle. La race, comme Julius Evola ou Ludwig Clauss nous l’enseignent,  n'est pas seulement une donnée biologique - la race est aussi la responsabilité spirituelle. Il y a beaucoup, beaucoup de Blancs en Europe et en Amérique dont l’esprit est complètement corrompu  - malgré une bonne mine "nordique".  Déjà  Clauss a écrit: "Examiner une race signifie d’abord de s’apercevoir du sens de sa figure corporelle. Mais ce sens ne peut être compris que du point de vue de la figure de l’âme » (5).

Pour restaurer son identité dans les temps d’urgence qui adviennent, l’Anarque doit examiner la doctrine de l'égalitarisme issue du christianisme. Les immigrés non-européens savent fort bien que l’Europe est très imprégnée d’un christianisme qui se reflète aujourd’hui dans les sentiments de culpabilité de l’homme blanc et dans le prêchi-prêcha séculièr sur la religion des droits de l’homme. En revanche, le sentiment de haine de soi n’existe guère chez les immigrés et pas plus au sein de la classe politique de leurs pays d'origine. Les Européens qui ont vécu dans les pays du Tiers-Monde savent fort bien ce que veut dire la discrimination raciale contre sa propre population. Un métis du Mexique habitant au sud de Los Angeles ou un Turc aux traits mongoloïdes habitant à Berlin Kreuzberg savent exactement quel groupe racial et culturel ils peuvent fréquenter. Le second, par exemple, n'a rien à chercher auprès des «Turcs» européens de la classe supérieure qui n’ont aucun scrupule à arborer en permanence leurs origines albanaises ou bosniaques, et qui aiment  bien s’en vanter en public. Un hidalgo mexicain servant comme haut-diplomate à Madrid déteste un Cholo habitant le barrio de Los Angeles.  En revanche, l'Allemagne, l'Amérique, l’Espagne, la France accordent à ces peuplades du Tiers-Monde des moyens de s’épanouir dont ils ne peuvent que rêver dans leurs pays d’origine.
Même s'il semble impossible de parler d’expulsion massive ou de transfert des populations, c’est une idée qu’on ne doit jamais exclure. Plus de 12 millions d'Allemands furent expulsés de leurs  foyers en Europe orientale à la fin de l'automne 1944 et au début de 1945  - dans une période de quelques mois seulement.  (6). Demain, le même scenario peut encore avoir lieu, suivi par de nouveaux génocides et par la migration massive de millions de personnes en Europe. Pour le rebelle européen reste à savoir qui sera l’architecte de ce nouveau «nettoyage ethnique» et qui en sera la victime.

Dans l’optique optimiste, même un aveugle peut s’apercevoir que le Système est mort. L’expérience avec ses dogmes abstraits de multiculturalisme et de progrès économique a échoué. Tant en Europe qu’aux États-Unis, on voit chaque jour que l'expérience libérale a touché à sa fin il y bien longtemps. Il y a suffisamment de preuves empiriques pour nous démontrer ce fait. On n’a qu’à choisir le plus visible et le plus audible. Il est caractéristique de la classe politique moribonde de vanter la « perfectibilité », « l’éternité », et la « véracité » de son Système – précisément au moment où son Système est en train de s'écrouler. Ces vœux pieux et d’auto-satisfaction, on a pu les observer tant et tant de fois dans l'histoire. Même les notions de la classe dirigeante actuelle portant sur la fin des temps et la «fin de l'Histoire» nous rappellent la mentalité de la classe politique des anciens pays communistes, en l’occurrence la Yougoslavie peu avant son effondrement. En 1990, il y avait encore de grands défilés pro-yougoslaves et procommunistes en Yougoslavie où les politiciens locaux se vantaient de l'indestructibilité du Système yougoslave. Quelques mois plus tard, la guerre commença  - et le Système mourut.

Dans l’Union européenne, la classe dirigeante d'aujourd'hui ne sait plus où elle va et ce qu'elle veut faire avec elle-même. Elle est beaucoup plus faible qu'elle ne veut le laisser voir à ses citoyens. Le nouvel Anarque vit de nouveau dans un vide historique et il dépend de sa seule volonté de remplir ce vide avec le contenu de son choix. La charrue peut facilement se muer en épée.
Tomislav Sunic (www.tomsunic.com) est écrivain, ancien diplomate croate et ancien professeur américain en science politique. Il est actuellement conseiller culturel  de l’American Third Position Party. Ses derniers livres publiés sont  La Croatie ; un  pays par défaut ? (Avatar, 2010) et Postmortem Report: Cultural Examinations from Postmodernity  (Wermod et Wermod, 2010), avec une préface de Kevin MacDonald.
Notes :
1.    Ernst Jünger, An der Zeitmauer, (Cotta- Klett Verlag, 1959), p. 25.
2.     Vilfredo Pareto, "Dangers of Socialism", The Other Pareto (St. Martin's, 1980), p. 125.
3.    Adam Smith, An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, 2 Vol. (Edinburgh, Printed, at the Univ. Press, for T. Nelson, 1827) p. 172. http://www.econlib.org/library/Smith/smWN11.html 
4.    Tomislav Sunic, La Croatie, un pays par défaut? (Avatar, 2010).
5.     Ludwig Clauß, Rasse und Charakter, (Verlag Moritz Diesterweg, Frankfurt a. M. 1942), p. 43. 
6.    Tomislav Sunic, „ In Fluß der verlorenen Zeiten; Das Schicksaal  des Deutschtum im Donauraum “, in Kein Dogma, Kein Verbot, Kein Tabu! ( Hrsg. Alfred Schickel. Festschrift für Prof. F.W. Seidler, Pour le Merite, 2008), p. 213-219.

samedi, 10 mars 2012

The Theorists of Occidentism

The Theorists of Occidentism

By Fabrice Fassio

Ex: http://www.counter-currents.com/


Aleksandr Zinoviev

Translated by M. P.

When he arrived in Germany in 1978, Aleksandr Zinoviev had worked for years in the fields of logic and scientific methodology applied to social systems (models). His personal research and experience in the Soviet world enabled him to publish many works devoted to his country and the communist (socialist) system. According to Zinoviev, communism first developed in Russia during the Stalinist period, then implanted itself in other countries, China in particular.

This social model differs profoundly from its competitor, which was born in North America and Western Europe around 200 to 250 years ago. For various reasons, which he explains in his work, L’Occidentisme: essai sur le triomphe d’une idéologie (Occidentism: Essay on the Triumph of an Ideology [Paris: Plon, 1995]), Zinoviev prefers the terms “Occidentism” or “Occidentalism” to the traditional denomination “capitalism.”

Zinoviev is certainly not the first theorist to attempt to understand the nature of the social system that is so vigorous in contemporary Occidental countries. In 1835, Alexis de Tocqueville, after returning from a voyage to the United States, published the first volume of a work that remains relevant today, De la Démocratie en Amérique (Democracy in America). In this book, he shared some of his reflections on American society, which was only a few decades old and was developing before his eyes.


Alexis de Tocqueville

Twenty years later, Tocqueville wrote another work, L’Ancien Régime et la Révolution (The Old Regime and the French Revolution). This book is a sociological (not historical) analysis of great profundity. It is, moreover, very interesting to read this book alongside the first chapters of Zinoviev’s book, which are devoted to the history of Occidentism.

When Tocqueville wrote, he was conscious that the Occidentist system, which he called “democratic society,” was in the process of implanting itself in France, where it would definitively supplant moribund feudalism. The Revolution of 1789 had only accelerated an inevitable process. At the beginning of the nineteenth century, Tocqueville not only understood that the future of France would belong to Occidentism, but he also predicted the fundamental role that the United States would play in the future in the entire world.

When Aleksandr Zinoviev wrote, 150 years after the publication of Tocqueville’s books, Occidentism was no longer in its infancy, but had long implanted itself in several countries; it had, moreover, won an important victory over its competitor, European communism. It is this triumphant system that Zinoviev describes without pretending to make an exhaustive study. I would like to present a brief overview of Zinoviev’s  theory, in order to show the radically innovative aspect of his idea of Occidentism.

The Three Pillars of Occidentism

The Occidentist model is the ensemble of the traits or characteristics common to Occidental countries; these characteristics have been largely created by the same internal laws, which explains the similarities existing between the way of life of countries as geographically far apart as France, Australia, and Canada. In his work devoted to the Occidentist system, Zinoviev affirms that this model rests upon three “pillars”: the economic, community, and human factors.

The economic factor rests simultaneously upon the rules that govern professionalism in work and which deal with investment and the ability to make profits. Profoundly linked to private enterprise, the Occidental world is therefore a world where discipline in work is very severe, and enterprises have the obligation to be profitable if they want to endure. The Occidental model of the production and distribution of goods and services is a very specific phenomenon, different from that which exists in a socialist society. In the latter, employees performing a given activity generally earn less than their Occidental equivalents, but they definitely work less, they perform the same task in much larger numbers, and they have guaranteed employment; as for enterprises, their survival does not depend on their ability to generate wealth.

The community factor is a phenomenon common to all societies consisting of thousands or millions of people. The division between leaders and led, the hierarchy of leaders, the formation of castes and classes, the creation of an ideology, and the appearance of the state as an organ responsible for the direction of several aspects of social life are community phenomena. Without these things, society can exist only as a totality destined to disappear. The state is therefore a phenomenon common to all human collectivities reaching a certain stage of development, but it takes different forms according to the nature of the social organism that it is required to direct. The Occidental form of the state is traditionally called “parliamentary democracy.” Human collectivities not belonging to the Occidental world have created forms of power other than parliamentary democracy.

The human factor is manifested in the collective acts of the members of a society. Education, culture, ideology, religion, and power have, among other functions, the purpose of regulating the reproduction of the human material necessary for the survival of the collectivity. Individualism, business initiative, the taste for meticulous work, the instinct to save, and the ability to organize oneself are, among other things, psychological qualities that have developed themselves in Occidental countries. The famous “Protestant work ethic” has played, for example, an important role in the formation of the human material in the United States. Elsewhere in the world, populations have developed other qualities necessary for the survival of the social organism to which they belong.

Occidentism is a model that was born and matured in the west of Europe and in other continents that have been populated by European emigrants. It has then spread into several places of the world to Occidentalize other people who have sometimes opposed a ferocious resistance to it. In the nineteenth century, the creation of colonial empires by the European powers was the manifestation of this expansion. Today, this expansion takes different forms from those of the past, but it continues, in Russia for example.

The Question of the Future


Aleksandr Zinoviev, Self-Portrait

In the last chapters of his work, Zinoviev raises the fundamental question of the future and his predictions regarding it. We have here an example of the methodological principles Zinoviev elaborated when he worked in Moscow.

In sociology, prediction is possible only upon the base of the analysis of the present. When the researcher analyses a given society, he highlights tendencies (laws) which act in the present and will continue to act in the future if nothing hinders their action. Upon the basis of these laws, the researcher can construct a model of a “possible future.” As Zinoviev remarks at the end of his work, the future is not fatally inscribed in the present.

The Face of the Future

Before concluding his study devoted to Occidentism, Zinoviev lists some internal laws that will determine the future, if nothing happens to thwart their action. I would like to focus on two of these laws.

In the first place, Zinoviev notes that the structure of the Occidental population is changing radically. The proportion of persons employed in the production of goods and services has decreased, while the number of the individuals exercising their activity in the spheres of the direction and administration of the country, as well as the spheres of ideology and the media, has increased.

In the second place, Zinoviev notes that the spheres of ideology and the media are reinforcing their power over the Occidental population. This last point is of great significance.

After the Second World War, the means of communication and information—the press, book publishing, radio, and television—were transformed. New technical inventions, reinforced links between different types of media, and the growth of employment in this sector have provoked a “qualitative leap.” In other words, the media have become an essential sphere of society, as well as the privileged means for the diffusion of ideological themes within the larger public.

This ideology is made up of an ensemble of judgments and ideas designed to fashion the consciousness of the social individual. Among the ideological themes diffused by the media in Western Europe in recent decades, let us cite offhand: “youthism” (jeunisme), or the extreme valorization of youth, the defense of homosexuality, the merits of democracy, ecology and the environment, and a standardized image of countries resistant to Occidental influence. The Occidentist ideology sets up taboos that must be respected: for example, the prohibition of raising questions linked to mass immigration in Europe. It also fabricates “personality cults,” often making mediocre individuals pass for exceptional beings: the stars of sports, politics, and show business.

One of today’s ideological themes occupies a preeminent place: the vision of the Occidental way of life in general, and the American way of life in particular. The best-selling books, the big budget films, and the television broadcasts, made in the United States or conceived upon the American model, present in one fashion or another a valorizing image of the American way of life.

Occidentist ideology and culture form part of what American political scientists call “soft power.” “Soft power” is extremely effective today and suffocates, in the literal sense of the term, cultural forms coming from other countries. The two laws expressed at the start of this chapter have reinforced their action since the second half of the last century. It is therefore legitimate to think that this movement will amplify itself in the future and that we are going to witness in the future an increasingly pronounced ideological conditioning of the Occidental population. “The Single Thought” (La Pensée Unique), designed to regulate the masses and to create a standardized social consciousness, therefore has a bright future ahead of it.

During the Cold War, Zinoviev addressed a letter to me in which he affirmed that he would be interested in studying the Occident, beginning by analyzing its ideology. Zinoviev perceived the colossal extent of the conditioning of the Occidental masses; he also knew that the ideology of the Occident exercised a corrosive effect on the upper classes of his own country. “Soft power” was an effective weapon in the struggle against the Soviet Union. The latter collapsed without the Americans using their armed forces, “hard power.” An extremely bloody conflict was thus avoided. Without rivals on the world scene, at least for a while, the United States has thus become the master of the world, 150 years after the voyage of Alexis de Tocqueville, the first theorist of Occidentism.

Source: http://www.zinoviev.ru/fassio/penseurs_zinoviev.html [4]


Article printed from Counter-Currents Publishing: http://www.counter-currents.com

URL to article: http://www.counter-currents.com/2012/03/the-theorists-of-occidentism/

vendredi, 02 mars 2012

Donoso, precursor de la época del pavor

Donoso, precursor de la época del pavor


Entre restauración y cesarismo: la antiutopía de Donoso Cortés

Por Rafael Campos García-Calderón
Filósofo de la Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos

Ex: http://geviert.wordpress.com/

Cuando en Interpretación europea de Donoso Cortés, Carl Schmitt nos describe el pensamiento del político y diplomático español como un pensamiento de carácter “europeo”, nos muestra algo inédito dentro del llamado “pensamiento reaccionario”.
La Revolución de 1848 fue el anuncio de una nueva era en la historia de Europa. La civilización burguesa europea sustentada en el liberalismo fue puesta a prueba. Una nueva filosofía política suspendió, por un momento, la hegemonía cultural burguesa: socialismo, comunismo, anarquismo, nihilismo y ateísmo aparecieron como una amenaza en el horizonte. Frente a este peligro, la Contrarrevolución europea, uno de cuyos baluartes será Napoleón III, asumió el costo de enfrentar estos acontecimientos. Con su acción, trastocó el orden liberal burgués creando un nuevo fenómeno: el Cesarismo. Así, el Estado recuperó, bajo una nueva forma, su status político y se alió con un conjunto de fuerzas sociales no incluidas, hasta ese momento, en el orden democrático liberal.

Uno de los partidarios de esta Contrarrevolución fue Donoso Cortés. A diferencia de Joseph de Maistre, Donoso no creía en la restauración de la Monarquía. Para él, los reyes habían perdido su lugar en la historia política de Europa. En su lugar solo quedaba la “dictadura del sable”, la nueva forma de ejercicio de la soberanía política. Donoso había percibido que los acontecimientos del 48 no respondían simplemente a una crisis del sistema liberal burgués. En realidad, había visto en ellos uno de los síntomas de un proceso anunciado ya por algunos teóricos. Sin embargo, frente a estos científicos, la visión de Donoso destacaba por su radicalismo espiritual. Para él, no se trataba simplemente de un combate político o cultural, sino de una guerra religiosa contra un enemigo mortal: la pseudoreligión del hombre expresada en el socialismo y sus diferentes formas. En este sentido, superaba la coyuntura política de Napoleón III y preparaba, con su visión, el escenario de una antiutopía.
Por esta razón, Donoso no debería ser considerado un pensador reaccionario, sino más bien el precursor de una nueva época: la época del pavor (δεινόσ). En ella, el hombre, con tal de desplegar su genio organizado, aprovecharía ventajosamente cualquier situación ignorando las diferencias entre el bien y el mal. Es esta consideración espiritual de la cultura europea la que condenó al pensamiento de Donoso al silencio. Superada la revolución, los historiadores burgueses ocultaron los acontecimientos y restauraron su fe en los ideales ilustrados. Sin embargo, los acontecimientos del 48 quedaron sin una interpretación satisfactoria.


Setenta años después la amenaza reapareció en el horizonte. La Revolución Bolchevique dirigida por Lenin desarrollaba el programa que Marx había esbozado, a partir de los acontecimientos del 48, en el Manifiesto Comunista. A diferencia de los historiadores burgueses, los comunistas habían podido leer en estos acontecimientos la inexorabilidad de un proceso que sus rivales pretendían ignorar: el triunfo de la civilización proletaria. Existía, para ellos, una continuidad histórica entre ambas revoluciones y, por tanto, según ellos, un nuevo poder se apropiaría indefectiblemente de los destinos de Europa. Este poder tendría como objetivo primordial el desarrollo de las fuerzas productivas capitalistas para alcanzar el socialismo, fase preparatoria del comunismo o sociedad sin clases.
Sin embargo, esta interpretación no era la única posible. A despecho del olvido de los pensadores liberales, hubo un conjunto de filósofos e historiadores que atendieron a los eventos de aquel momento y a su continuidad en el tiempo. Uno de ellos fue, sin duda, el mismo Donoso Cortés, cuyo diagnóstico de la situación histórica ha permitido esbozar una “interpretación europea” de su pensamiento. Según esta expresión, el alcance de la interpretación comunista estaría fuera de los límites de Europa, pues en lugar de dar cuenta del destino histórico del Viejo Continente, habría esbozado el futuro de un espacio muy diferente: la Rusia de los zares.

La profecía comunista habría proyectado sobre una crisis histórica concreta su propio plan histórico ideal. Sin duda, el lugar de realización de esta idea no podía ser Europa, pues la condición sine qua non para su concretización era la implementación generalizada de la tecnología en la vida social y la centralización de la administración política. A pesar de la interpretación comunista, la cultura europea era todo menos un cuerpo homogéneo capaz de someterse sin más al aplanamiento homogenizante de la tecnología y la burocracia. Para ello, era preciso un espacio político carente de conciencia histórica, es decir, un Estado carente de vínculos orgánicos con su Sociedad. La Rusia zarista, sometida incontables veces al azote tártaro-mongol y a la política del exterminio, era el candidato oportuno para esta nueva utopía.
Para Carl Schmitt, era posible reconstruir esta interpretación europeísta de los acontecimientos del 48 a partir de la obra de Donoso Cortés y de otros pensadores contemporáneos que, sin embargo, no tuvieron con él mayor contacto. Esta perspectiva estaba constituida por tres elementos: un pronóstico histórico, un diagnóstico cultural y un paralelismo histórico con el pasado. Según el pronóstico histórico de esta interpretación, estos eventos habrían marcado el inicio del descenso de la civilización europea frente a la hegemonía de dos nuevas potencias: Rusia y EE.UU. Es a partir de la derrota de Napoleón I frente a Rusia en 1814 que esta nueva realidad se apodera de la historia: las potencias europeas han dejado de ser el centro de la Historia Universal.

El primer hito en la historia de esta interpretación lo constituye, según Schmitt, Tocqueville (1835), quien pronosticó el despliegue de la democratización y centralización administrativa a gran escala por parte de Rusia y EE.UU. Además de ello, Tocqueville hizo un diagnóstico cultural de Occidente. Para él, la revolución de 1789 abría las puertas al proceso de centralización política que se realizaría inexorablemente en manos de cualquier partido o ideología política. En este sentido, la actividad política en general estaba irremediablemente destinada a servir al propósito centralista administrativo: la civilización se dirigía a la masificación.
Paralelamente, Donoso Cortés (1850) había percibido que la política exterior de Europa había decrecido en relación a la de EE.UU., Rusia e Inglaterra. Esta señal le indicaba la misma conclusión a la que Tocqueville había llegado con su pronóstico. En cuanto al diagnóstico, Donoso arribaba a otra conclusión, cercana más bien a la que algunos historiadores y sociólogos alemanes habían efectuado. Según esta, las modernas invenciones tecnológicas puestas al servicio de la administración pública anunciaban la futura mecanización de la sociedad y la destrucción de los órganos intermedios de poder. En efecto, Jakob Burckhardt, Friedrich List, Max Weber y Oswald Spengler, entre otros, diagnosticaron la creciente mecanización e industrialización de la civilización como el camino hacia una sociedad perfectamente organizada dirigida por una burocracia que tiene en sus manos la explotación económica. A los ojos de esta “interpretación europea”, la nueva era no traía consigo el paraíso sino la esclavitud a la técnica.
Un tercer elemento de esta interpretación consistía en la comparación o paralelismo histórico que a partir de 1848 los historiadores, comunistas o “europeístas”, habían efectuado respecto de la situación histórica de Europa. Este paralelismo consistía en la comparación con la época de las guerras civiles en Roma, época en la que el Cesarismo se implantó y en la que el Cristianismo florecía hasta imponerse al Imperio. Esta comparación traía consigo la idea del final de la Antigüedad que, en clave decimonónica, debía leerse como el final del Cristianismo.

Spengler, en la Decadencia de Occidente, había tratado de vincular entre sí diversos paralelismos históricos. Entre ellos, el más importante constituía la batalla de Accio, considerado el comienzo de nuestra era cristiana. Saint-Simon, en El Nuevo Cristianismo, estableció una relación entre nuestra época actual y la de los orígenes del Cristianismo. Para él, el Cristianismo habría terminado y su sustituto, un nuevo poder espiritual, habría llegado a reemplazarlo: el Socialismo, el nuevo cristianismo.
La posición de Donoso frente al paralelismo histórico era muy diferente. En clara oposición a ambas interpretaciones del mismo fenómeno, consideraba que el Cesarismo y el inicio del Cristianismo como paralelismo histórico a los eventos de 1848 eran evidentes, aunque insuficientes para explicar la circunstancia histórica del momento. En efecto, a diferencia de todos los otros pensadores, juzgaba demasiado optimista el pronóstico, pues por ninguna parte veía a aquellos “pueblos jóvenes”, símbolo de la regeneración espiritual occidental, que hubiesen correspondido a los germanos de la época de las invasiones a Roma. En el siglo XIX, esos “pueblos jóvenes” ya estaban corrompidos por el veneno de la civilización occidental desde el momento en que son un resultado de esta. Por ello, para él, el paralelismo histórico entre nuestra época y la era del cristianismo primitivo o del cesarismo no podía asemejarse a la visión que los socialistas tenían del mismo.

En realidad, la falta de este tercer elemento regenerador hacía del paralelismo histórico la antesala a una catástrofe. En lugar de un elemento regenerador, una seudorreligión ‒el socialismo ateo‒ ocupaba su lugar. Se trataba del culto a la Humanidad absoluta, culto que, paradójicamente, conducía, según él, al terror inhumano. Desde su punto de vista y a la luz de los acontecimientos del 48, una religión del Hombre solo podía conducir al terror y la destrucción, pues el Hombre no tolera a los demás hombres que no se someten a él. Para Donoso, esta Utopía era el resultado de un espejismo producido por la asociación entre el progreso de la técnica y la aspiración a la perfección moral de la Humanidad. Así, la idea ilustrada de progreso dejó de ser un esquema abstracto y se transformó en un programa materialmente realizable a partir de la técnica.
La visión que Donoso tenía de los acontecimientos del 48 y del paralelismo histórico tan celebrado se asemejaba, según Schmitt, a la experiencia interior a la que Soren Kierkegaard había accedido por aquellos años. En efecto, Kierkegaard había percibido la amenaza de un clima de horrores a partir de la lasitud espiritual que las iglesias de su tiempo padecían. Una vez más, la era de las masas había llegado. En este sentido, la visión de Donoso no era otra cosa que la objetivación histórica de esta realidad espiritual. A diferencia de las utopías idealistas y materialistas que sus enemigos liberales y socialistas trataban de imponer a la historia desde esferas extrañas a ella, Donoso consideraba el acontecimiento histórico concreto y a partir de él interpretaba los signos sorprendentes de una teleología simbólica.
Desde este punto de vista, el Hombre no podía ser la encarnación de la paz, como querían los demagogos de su época, sino del terror y la destrucción. Según Schmitt, Donoso vaticinó el advenimiento de aquello que Nietzsche expresó en su concepto de Superhombre: la legitimación histórica del poder y la violencia sobre los infrahombres.

jeudi, 01 mars 2012

Why Conservatives Always Lose

Why Conservatives Always Lose

By Alex Kurtagic

In our modern Western societies, liberals do all the laughing, and conservatives do all the crying. Liberals may find this an extraordinary assertion, given that over the past century their preferred political parties have spent more time out of power than their conservative rivals, and, indeed, no radical Left party has ever held a parliamentary or congressional majority. Yet, this view is only possible if one regards a Labour or a Democratic party as ‘the Left’, and a Conservative or a Republican party as ‘the Right’—that is, if one considers politics to be limited to liberal politics, and regards the negation of liberalism as a negation of politics. The reality is that in modern Western societies, both ‘the Left’ and ‘the Right’ consist of liberals, only they come in two flavours: radical and less radical. And whether one is called liberal or conservative is simply a matter of degree, not of having a fundamentally different worldview. The result has been that the dominant political outlook in the West has drifted ever ‘Leftwards’. It has been only the speed of the drift that has changed from time to time.

This is not to deny the existence of conservatism. Conservatism is real. This is to say that conservatism, even in its most extreme forms, operates against, and is inevitably dragged along by, this Leftward-drifting background. And this is crucial if we are to have a true understanding of modern conservatism and why conservatives are always losing, even when electoral victories create the illusion that conservatives are frequently winning.

It would be wrong, however, to attribute the endless defeat of conservatism entirely to the Leftward drift of the modern political cosmos. That would an abrogation of conservatives’ responsibility for their own defeats. Conservatives are responsible for their own defeats. The causes stem less from liberalism’s dominance, than from the very premise of conservatism. Triumphant liberalism is made possible by conservatism, while triumphant conservatism leads eventually to liberalism. Anyone dreaming of ‘taking back his country’ by supporting the conservative movement, and baffled by its inability to stop the march of liberalism, has yet to understand the nature of his cause. The brutal truth: he is wasting his time.

Defeating liberalism requires acceptance of two fundamental statements.

  • Traditionalism is not conservatism.
  • Liberal defeat implies conservative defeat.

Much of our ongoing conversation about the future of Western society has focused on the deconstruction of liberalism. Not much of it has focused on a deconstruction of conservatism. Most deconstructions of conservatism have come from the Left, and, as we will see, there is good reason for this. It is time conservatism be deconstructed from outside the Left (and therefore also the Right). I say ‘also’ because neither conservatism nor traditionalism I class as ‘the Right’. Neither do I accept that ‘Right wing’ is the opposite of ‘Left wing’; ‘the Right’ is predicated on ‘the Left’, and is therefore not independent of ‘the Left’. Consequently, any use of the terms ‘Left’ and ‘Right’ coming from this camp is and has always been expedient; I expect such terms to disappear from current usage once the political paradigm has fundamentally changed.

Below I describe eight salient traits that define conservatism, explain the long-term pattern of conservative defeats, and show how liberalism and conservatism are complementary and mutually reinforcing partners, rather than contrasting enemies.

Anatomy of Conservatism


Proponents of the radical Left like to describe the politics of the Right as ‘the politics of fear’. Leftist propaganda may be full of invidious characterisations, false dichotomies, and outright lies, but this is one observation that, when applied to conservatism, is entirely correct. The reason conservatives conserve and are suspicious of youth and innovation is that they fear change. Conservatives prefer order, fixity, stability, and predictable outcomes. One of their favourite refrains is ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’. There is some wisdom in that, and there are, indeed, advantages to this view, since it requires less effort, permits forward planning, and reduces the likelihood of stressful situations. Once a successful business or living formula is found, one can settle quite comfortably into a reassuring routine in a slow world of certainties, which at best allows for gradual and tightly controlled evolution. Change ends the routine, breaks the formula, disrupts plans, and lead to stressful situations that demand effort and speed, cause stress and uncertainty, and may have unpredictable outcomes. Conserving is therefore an avoidance strategy by risk-averse individuals who do not enjoy the challenge of thinking creatively and adapting to new situations. For conservatives change is an evil to be feared.

No answers

We can deduce then that the reason conservatives fear change is that they are not very creative. Creativity, after all, involves breaking the mould, startling associations, unpredictability. Conservatives are disturbed by change because they generally know not how to respond. This is the primary reason why, when change does occur, as it inevitably does, their response tends to be slow and to focus on managing symptoms rather than addressing causes. This is also the primary reason why they either plan well ahead against every imaginable contingency or remain in a state of denial until faced with immediate unavoidable danger. Conservatives are first motivated by fear and then paralysed by it.


Unfortunately for conservatives, the world is ever changing, the universe runs in cycles, and anything alive is always subject to unpredictable changes in state. Because they generally have no answers, this puts conservatives always on the defensive. The only time conservatives take aggressive action is when planning against possible disruptions to their placid life. They are the last to show initiative in anything else because being a pioneer is risky, fraught with stress and uncertainties. Thus, conservatism is always a resistance movement, a movement permanently on the back foot, fighting a tide that keeps on coming. The conservatives’ main preoccupation is holding on to their positions, and ensuring that, when retreat becomes inevitable, their new position is as close as possible to their old one. Once settled into a new position, any lull in the tide becomes an opportunity to recover the previous position. However, because lulls do not last long enough and recovering lost positions is difficult, the recovery is at best partial, never wholly successful. Conservatives are consequently always seen as failures and sell-outs, since eventually they are always forced to compromise.


Their lack of creativity leads conservatives to look for answers in the past. This goes beyond learning the lessons from history. Averse to risk, they mistrust novelty, which makes their present merely a continuation of the past. In this they contrast against both liberals and traditionalists: for the former the present is a delay of the future, for the latter it is a moment between what was and will be. At the same time, conservatives resemble the liberals, and contrast against traditionalists more than they think. One reason is that they confuse tradition with conservation, overlooking that tradition involves cyclical renewal rather than museological restoration. Museological restoration is what conservatives are about. Their domain is the domain of the dead, embalmed or kept alive artificially with systems of life support. Another reason is that both liberals and conservatives are obsessed with the past: because they love it much, conservatives complain that things of the past are dying out; because they hate it much, liberals complain that things of the past are not dying out soon enough! One is necrophile, the other a murderer. Both are about death. In contrast, traditionalism is about life, for life is a cycle of birth, growth, maturity, death, and renewal.


Fear, resistance to change, lack of creativity, and an infatuation with dead things makes conservatives boring. Dead things can be interesting, of course, and in our modern throwaway society, dead things can have the appeal of the exotic, particularly since they belong to a time when the emphasis was on quality rather than quantity. Quality, understood both as high quality and possessing qualities, is linked to rarity or uniqueness, excitement or surprise, and, therefore, creativity or unpredictability. Conservatives, however, conserve because they long for a world of certainties—slow, secure, comfortable, and with predictable outcomes. Granted: such an existence can be pleasant given optimal conditions, and it may indeed be recommended in a variety of situations, but it is not exciting. Excitement involves precisely the conditions and altered states that conservatives fear and seek to avoid. It thus becomes difficult to get excited about anything conservative.


There are good reasons why conservatism is associated with old age. As a person grows old he loses his taste for excitement; his constitution is less robust, he has less energy, he has fewer reserves, he has rigidified in mind and body, and he is less capable of the rapid, flexible responses demanded by intense situations and sudden shocks. It makes sense for a person to become more conservative as he grows old, but this is hardly a process relished by anyone. Once old enough to be taken seriously, the desire is always to remain young and delay the signs of old age. Expressing boredom by saying that something ‘got old’ implies a periodic need for change. Conservatives oppose change, so they get old very fast.


Preoccupation with the past, resistance to change, and mistrust of novelty eventually makes conservatives irrelevant. This is particularly the case in a world predicated on the desirability of progress and constant innovation. Conservatives end up becoming political antiquarians, rather than effective powerbrokers: they operate not as leaders of men, but as curators in a museum.


Sooner of later, through their refusal to adapt until they become irrelevant, conservatives are constantly left behind, waving a fist at the world with angry incomprehension. Because eventually survival necessitates periodic surrenders and regroupings at positions further to the Left, conservatives come to be seen as spineless, as people always in retreat, as, in short, losers. The effective function of a conservative in present-day society is to organise surrender, to ensure retreats are orderly, to keep up vain hopes or a restoration, so that there is never risk of a revolutionary uprising.

Liberalism’s Best Ally

With the above in mind, it is hard not to see conservatism as liberalism’s own controlled opposition: it may not be that way, but the effect is certainly the same. Conservatism provides periodic respite after a bout of liberalism, allowing citizens to adapt and grow accustomed to its effects before the next wave of liberalisation. Worse still, conservative causes, because they eventually always become irrelevant, provide a rationale for liberalism, supplying proof for the Left of why it is and should remain the only game in town. Liberals love conservatives.

Conservatism and Tradition

Conservatism does not have to be liberalism’s best ally: conservatism can be the best ally of any anti-establishment movement, since it always comes to represent the boring alternative. Conservatives defend the familiar, but familiarity breeds contempt, so over time people lose respect for what is and grow willing to experience some turbulence—results may be unpredictable and may indeed turn out to be negative, but at least the turbulence makes people feel alive, like there is something they can be actively involved in. In the age of liberalism, conservatism is fundamentally liberal: it does not defend tradition, since liberalism has caused it to be forgotten for the most part, but an earlier version of liberalism. In an age of tradition, conservatism could well be the best ally of a rival tradition, since conservatism always stagnates what is, thus increasing receptivity over time to any kind of change. Thus conservatism sets the conditions for destructive forms of change.

By contrast, tradition is evolution, and so long as it avoids the trap of conservatism (stagnation), those within the tradition remain engaged with it. This is not to say that traditions are immune from self-destructive events and should never be abandoned: hypertely, maladaption, or pathological evolution, for example, can destroy a tradition from within. However, that is outside our scope here.

Confusion of Tradition and Conservation

In the age of liberalism, because it has forgotten tradition, tradition is confused with conservation. Thus some conservatives describe themselves as traditionalists, even though they are just archaic liberals. Some self-described traditionalists may erroneously adopt conservative traits, perhaps out of a confused desire to reject liberalism’s notions of progress. Tradition and conservation are distinct and separate processes. Liberalism may contain its own traditions. Liberalism may also become conservative in its rejection of tradition. Likewise for conservatism, except that it rejects liberalism and does so only ostensibly, not in practice.

End of Liberalism

Ending liberalism requires an end to conservatism. We should never call ourselves conservatives. The distinction between tradition and conservation must always be made, for transcending the present ‘Left’-‘Right’ paradigm of modern democratic politics in the West demands a great sorting of what is traditional from what is conservative, so that the former can be rediscovered, and the latter discarded as part of the liberal apparatus.

In doing so we must be alert to the trap of reaction. Reactionaries are defined by their enemies, and thus become trapped in their enemies’ constructions, false dichotomies, and unspoken assumptions. Rather than rejection, the key word is transcendence. The end of liberalism is achieved through its transcendence, its relegation into irrelevance.

Given the confusion of our times, it must be stressed that tradition is not about returning to an imagined past, or about reviving a practice that was forgotten so that it may be continued exactly as it was when it was abandoned. There may have been a valid reason for abandoning a particular practice, and the institution of a new practice may have been required in order for the tradition successfully to continue. A tradition, once rediscovered, must be carried forward. Continuation is not endless replication.

After Liberalism

The measure of our success in this enterprise will be seen in the language.

We know liberalism has been successful because many of us ended up defining ourselves as a negation of everything that defined liberalism. Many of the words used to describe our political positions are prefixed with ‘anti-‘. This represented an adoption by ‘anti-liberals’ of negative identities manufactured by liberals for purposes of affirming themselves in ways that suited their convenience and flattered their vanity.

Ending liberalism implies, therefore, the development of a terminology that transcends liberalism’s constructions. Only when they begin describing themselves as a negation of what we are will we know we have been successful, for their lack of an affirmative, positive vocabulary will be indicative that their identity has been fully deconstructed and is then socially, morally, and philosophically beyond the pale.

Developing such a vocabulary, however, is a function of our determining once again who we are and what we are about. Without a metaphysics to define the tradition and drive it forward, any attempt at a cultural revolution will fail. A people need a metaphysics if they are to tell their story. If the story of who we are and where we are going cannot be told for lack of a defining metaphysic, any attempt at a cultural revolution will need to rely on former stories, will therefore lapse into conservatism, and thus into tedium and irrelevance.

After Conservatism

One cannot be for Western culture if one is not for the things that define Western culture. A metaphysics, and therefore ‘our story’, is defined through art. Art, in the broadest possible sense, gives expression to values, ideals, and sentiments that a people share and feel in the core of their beings, but which often cannot be articulated in words. Therefore, the battle for Western identity is waged at this level, not in the political field, even if identity is a political matter. Similarly, any attempt to use art for political purposes fails, because politics, being merely the art of the possible, is defined by culture, not the other way around.

In the search for ‘our story’, we must not confuse art with craft. Craftmanship may be defined by tradition, and a tradition may find expression in crafts, making them ‘traditional’, but the two are not synonymous. Similarly, craftsmanship may improve art, but craft is not art anymore than art is craft. Art explores and defines. Craft reproduces and perpetuates. Thus, art is to tradition what craft is to conservatism. This is why contemporary art, being an extreme expression of liberal ideals, is without craftsmanship, and why art with craftsmanship is considered conservative, illustration, or ‘outsider’.

Those concerned with the continuity of the West often treat reading strictly non-fiction and classics as proof of their seriousness and dedication, but ironically it will be when they start reading fiction and making new fiction that they will be at their most serious and dedicated. If tradition implies continuity and not simple replication, then it also implies ongoing creation and not simple preservation.

After Tradition

No tradition has eternal life. Ours will some day end. Liberalism sees its fulfilment as the end of history, but that is their cosmology, not ours. Therefore, liberalism does not—and should never—indicate to us that we have reached the end of the line. The degeneration of the West is tied to the degeneration of liberalism. The West will be renewed when the liberals come crashing down. They will be reduced to an obsolete and irrelevant subculture living off memories and preoccupied with conserving whatever they have left. Once regenerated, the West will continue until its tradition self-destructs or is replaced by another. Whatever tradition replaces ours may be autochthonous, but it could well be the tradition of another race. If that proves so, that will be the end of our race. Thus, so long as our race remains vibrant, able to give birth to new metaphysics when old ones die, we may live on, and be masters of our destiny.

mercredi, 29 février 2012

Debunking Another Lie: Lawrence H. Keeley’s War Before Civilization: The Myth of the Peaceful Savage

Debunking Another Lie:
Lawrence H. Keeley’s War Before Civilization: The Myth of the Peaceful Savage

Ex: http://www.counter-currents.com/

Lawrence H. Keeley’s War Before Civilization: The Myth of the Peaceful Savage (New York: Oxford University Press, 1996)

This slender volume published by Oxford University Press is an invaluable contribution to the historical and anthropological literature. Author Lawrence H. Keeley [3], a professor of anthropology at the University of Illinois at Chicago, is an archaeologist specializing in the prehistory of northwestern Europe.

According to Keeley, the thoughts of English philosopher Thomas Hobbes and French philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau embody two competing paradigms of peace, violence, and civilization.

Hobbes believed the inertial “natural” state of humanity to be war, not peace. In Keeley’s rendering Hobbes was nevertheless a universalistic egalitarian who did not think human beings were “innately cruel or violent or biologically driven to dominate others”—a faith Keeley shares.

But the dominant ideological-academic paradigm of today is Rousseau’s, which denies “civilization its humanity while proclaiming the divinity of the primitive.” (p. 6)

The most interesting and surprising observation Keeley makes about these two men is this one: “Unlike Hobbes, Rousseau seemed genuinely interested in whether his contentions were confirmed in the observations of real ‘savages’ then being encountered by European explorers. His disciples accompanied French explorations and brought back mixed reports.”

But Rousseau and his followers “were too thoroughly convinced that the natural state of human society was a peaceful combination of free love and primitive communism to see [the] violent first encounters as anything but rare aberrations.” (p. 7)

“Prejudices” and “blinders,” Keeley says, prevent professional anthropologists and archaeologists from acknowledging “unambiguous physical evidence” of primitive violence. Successive waves of “existentialism, structuralism, structural Marxism, poststructuralism, and postmodernism” in the humanities and social sciences “have left American universities a ‘burned-over district.’” (pp. 221–22, n. 1)

Keeley demonstrates conclusively that prevailing dogmas about primitive life—the myth of the peaceful savage corrupted by white civilization—is contrary to fact.

Keeley marshals three kinds of evidence to make his case: prehistoric findings by archaeologists, 20th century ethnographic surveys by cultural anthropologists who lived among still-extant primitive peoples, and historical accounts of early contact between whites and nonwhites.

“A Scarcity of Peace”

“Given the neo-Rousseauian tenor of the present day, it comes as a shock to discover that the proportion of war casualties in primitive societies almost always exceeds that suffered by even the most bellicose of war-torn modern states.” (p. 88)

Professor Keeley debunks two primary myths in particular: the romantic, Left-wing, anti-Western, Rousseauian-Fennimore Cooper (he mentions the latter author by name) primitive idyll, as well as a WWII-era academic perception that nonwhite tribesmen waged a stylized, less horrible, special kind of primitive warfare that differed radically from “real” or “true” war conducted by modern, civilized states. By comparison, primitive warfare was seen as unprofessional, undisciplined, unspecialized, ineffective, unserious, and relatively harmless.

But, Keeley asserts, genuinely peaceful societies have been extremely rare: 90–95% of known societies have engaged in warfare on a routine basis.

One fascinating chapter in history I had not been aware of involved the stark contrast between the violent Spanish and US frontier engagement of Amerindians in Mexico and America versus a far more intelligent, peaceful, and just handling of essentially the same situation in Canada. (pp. 152–57)

In North America, Indian tribes on both sides of the 49th parallel were frequently the same. Likewise, Euro-Canadians and Euro-Americans were essentially the same racially and ethnically.

In Mexico and the US there was frequent bitter warfare. But in Canada subjugation, pacification, and segregation on reservations was accomplished peacefully. Keeley’s explanation of how this occurred is extremely interesting. Essentially, it was a function of different central government and law enforcement policies.

Another opinion of Keeley’s is that the Inuit may have committed genocide against the Greenland Vikings: “The unequivocal traditions of the Inuit, not recorded until 1850, claim that their ancestors administered the coup de grâce to the fading Norse colonies in the course of mutual raids and massacres.” (p. 77) There is archaeological evidence to support the tradition.

The author analyzes the cross-cultural history of warfare from every conceivable angle: its prevalence and importance, frequency, degree of mobilization, tactics, weapons, fortifications, battles, raids, ambushes, massacres, primitive versus civilized warfare, prisoners, captives, war deaths, wounds, mutilation, trophy-taking (of body parts), cannibalism, looting and destruction, territorial acquisition, motives and causes of warfare, population density and pressure, trading, raiding, frontiers, attitudes toward war and peace, and the maintenance of peace.


His discussion of cannibalism (pp. 103–106) illustrates his approach to these various subjects.

Anthropologists distinguish three kinds of cannibalism.

Ritual cannibalism, the most frequent type, involved consumption of a portion of a corpse for magical purposes—brain, heart, liver, bits of flesh, or ashes from various body parts mixed with a beverage. Such cannibalism was very widely distributed, though not the norm in prestate warfare.

Culinary or gastronomic cannibalism consisted of eating human meat as food. Starvation cannibalism occurred under famine conditions.

Academic disputes arise particularly over culinary cannibalism. “Neo-Rousseauians” deny that it ever existed anywhere, except under conditions of extreme starvation. While not true, “Certainly, it appears that many of the societies accused of culinary cannibalism either were being slandered by their enemies or, at most, practiced ritual cannibalism.” Alleged cases of culinary cannibalism often turn out to be exaggerations of ritual cannibalism or misinterpretations of customs having nothing to do with cannibalism, such as preserving skulls as war trophies.

Nevertheless, culinary cannibalism has occurred.

Ethnographic evidence concerning the Polynesians of the Marquesas Islands derived from native self-reports initially categorized them as ritual cannibals. However, wholesale consumption of human flesh leaves distinct forensic archaeological evidence in the form of human bones treated like the bones of meat animals.

Subsequent archaeological evidence from the Marquesas revealed, contrary to ethnographic accounts, that the scale of culinary cannibalism was large, and increased as the population expanded and other sources of meat disappeared.

Additional evidence for culinary cannibalism has been found among tribes and chiefdoms in southern Central America and northeastern South America. Many tribes “reputedly consumed large numbers of their dead foes and captives. Notwithstanding some kind of magical or religious justification, several of these groups seemed to have positively relished human flesh.”

People in Oceania, sections of the Congo, and Amerindian tribes in the American Southwest also ate human victims. Cannibalism occurred as well in Early Neolithic (3000–4000 BC) southern France and portions of Bronze Age and Early Iron Age Europe.

The Aztecs are a special case. Keeley does not accept the contention of Marxist Jewish anthropologist Marvin Harris that the Aztec empire was the only “[culinary] cannibal state.” (Aztec society is considered a state or civilization rather than a tribe.)

“There can be little doubt,” Keeley writes, “that the Aztecs annually sacrificed large numbers of war captives in their great temples and that parts of these victims’ bodies [ritual cannibalism] were eaten. There were even recipes for human stews.” Archaeological excavation “has uncovered ample evidence of human sacrifice but none yet of cannibalism.” He leaves open the possibility that future excavations might turn up evidence of culinary cannibalism.

Keeley concludes, “It is clear that the consumption of enemies’ corpses has occurred in the warfare of several tribes and chiefdoms. Victorious states may have ruthlessly exploited the vanquished, but, with the exception of the Aztecs, they have never actually consumed them.”

Discussion of cannibalism covers only four pages in Keeley’s book, and I have omitted most of the details, supporting evidence, and citations.

Scaling the Data

Keeley presents the data he has gathered and tabulated proportionally, measuring deaths and other figures against the size of the societies in question. It is this approach that suddenly places primitive and modern warfare on a proper analytical footing.

The author has constructed several graphs, typically with percentage figures along one axis and type of society along the other: prehistoric, primitive, civilized, tribal, ancient, modern, hunter-gatherer, horticulturalist, pastoralist, and state entities.

Graphs show percent of male populations mobilized, percent killed and wounded in specific battles, annual war deaths as percentage of mean population, percent of deaths from warfare by society, and percent of territorial change per generation.

An appendix consisting of seventeen supplementary tables tabulating statistical data used in the text is included at the end of the book. The tables were constructed from a wide array of academic studies, many of which were cross-cultural in nature.

Because the proportional approach is central to Keeley’s method, it is worth quoting his argument at length:

Some readers may be unconvinced by percentage comparisons between populations of hundreds or thousands of people and populations of millions or tens of millions—that is, they are more impressed by absolute numbers than ratios. However, consistent with such views, such skeptical readers must also disdain any calculations of death rates per patient or passenger-mile and therefore always choose to undergo critical surgery at small, rural, Third World clinics and fly on small airlines. At such medical facilities and on such airlines, the total number of passenger or patient deaths are always far fewer than those occurring on major airlines or at large university and urban hospitals. These innumerate readers should also prefer residence on one of the United States’s small Indian reservations to life in any of its metropolitan areas since the annual absolute number of deaths from homicide, drug abuse, alcoholism, cancer, heart disease, and automobile accidents will always be far fewer on the reservations than in major cities and their suburbs. (p. 214 n. 21)

Not Perfect

Keeley deserves enormous credit for debunking an asinine anti-white narrative (which his book very effectively does), but he is not perfect.

Keeley harbors the academic’s simplistic, black-and-white detestation of Germany, saying that by his “conservative calculation,” excluding deaths from disease and starvation, “the annual homicide rate of Nazi Germany (1933 to 1945)” qualifies it as “the most homicidal society ever recorded.” (p. 206, n. 11)

Nowhere is the deadliness of Communism discussed. The USSR is mentioned only in connection with its casualties in WWII: “In modern history, Nazi Germany is unique in both the scale and the indiscriminateness of its homicides.” (p. 214, n. 28)

Keeley even writes, “The human-hide lampshades produced at Nazi death camps are perhaps the modern era’s preeminent symbol of evil.” (p. 102)

He does not define his nonstandard use of “homicide,” but it obviously includes alleged camp deaths and probably some or all enemy military deaths as well. Nevertheless, Germany (or Europe, when figures are inclusive) is at the bottom, not the top, of his tabulated statistical rankings, which invariably show primitive warfare to have been far more lethal and violent, proportionally speaking, than modern conflicts.

In WWII, the Allies “delivered the world from evil” through the use of “total war.” Keeley approvingly quotes British historian H. P. Willmott’s belief that 57 million dead is “a small price to pay for ridding the world of depraved wickedness.” (p. 222, n. 2) (Academics, like politicians and bureaucrats, are casual about the loss of human life as long as the killing serves their ideological predilections.)

Keeley is a garden-variety egalitarian: “all members of our species have within rather narrow limits of variation the same basic physiology, psychology, and intellect.” Variations in temperament or intellect “have no value in explaining social or cultural differences between groups.” People of every racial background win Nobel Prizes. “The many and profound differences in technology, behavior, political organization, and values” among the peoples of the Earth are explained solely by “nongenetic” “material and social factors.” “This attitude reflects not just the antiracist tenor of the twentieth century, but also the accumulated facts and especially the experiences of ethnographers.” (p. 180)

The allusion to “accumulated facts” as proving human sameness is significant because, unlike most academics, Keeley places a high premium on facts and evidence—it was, after all, hard archaeological and anthropological data that compelled him to abandon his faith that civilization is inherently evil.

Clearly, breaking free of one overarching societal myth does not of necessity open a man to new ideas, or produce general skepticism or caution. Keeley does not ask himself, “If this was wrong, what other widely-held beliefs might also be constructed upon sand?” Instead, he simply reaches a dead end and switches his impressive critical faculties off.

This is not to say that the author beats the reader over the head with his misguided beliefs—he doesn’t. They play little role in the overall discussion. Nevertheless, they constitute his guiding principles.

Furthermore, Keeley does not draw sensible conclusions from his empirical findings, leading him to deduce some rather appalling “lessons” from his survey.

Though rejecting the myth of the pacified past out of hand, and with it the unequivocal conclusion “that the only answer to the ‘mighty scourge of war’ is a return to tribal conditions and the destruction of [Western] civilization,” he remains committed to the “practical prospect for universal peace.” (p. 179)

Peace will be achieved in familiar Left-wing fashion by creating

the largest social, economic, and political units possible, ideally one encompassing the whole world, rather than allowing those we do have to fragment into mutually hostile ethnic or tribal enclaves. The degree of mutual interdependence created by modern transportation and communications long ago rendered the concepts of national and ethnic self-sufficiency and self-determination absurd and dangerous delusions. (p. 181)

World peace will be achieved without resort to “totalitarian tyranny, disastrous economic policies, or state imposition of cultural or religious uniformity”—or, for that matter, massive warfare and permanent, institutionalized violence and injustice. (p. 181)

So the man who challenged stereotypes through laborious theoretical and empirical work didn’t learn as much from his intellectual breakthrough as one might have expected.

Fortunately, Keeley generally keeps these cherished if erroneous beliefs to himself and permits his considerable accumulation of the evidence do most of the talking. The author adheres to facts rather than dogma at least within his specialty—no small feat for an academic.

I highly recommend this book. It is full of useful information and insights. At only 245 pages it is quite short—183 pages of text plus an appendix, bibliography, footnotes, and index. The rudimentary 4-page index could have been usefully expanded.

White nationalists and patriotic military personnel alike—active duty, academic, retired, conservative, libertarian, or pro-white—can learn a great deal from this overview. A cursory check of the Internet provides no indication that the book is being consistently used as a standard text in military curricula.

Professor Keeley has done a great service by writing War Before Civilization.


Article printed from Counter-Currents Publishing: http://www.counter-currents.com

URL to article: http://www.counter-currents.com/2012/02/debunking-another-lie/

mardi, 28 février 2012

An essay on Ernst Jünger's concept of the sovereign individual


An essay on Ernst Jünger's concept of the sovereign individual

[TAKEN FROM : http://scot.altermedia.info/ ]

tumblr_liurg6UdCg1qzdxojo1_400.jpgErnst Jünger says in his acceptance speech for the prestigious Goethe prize in 1982, "I've had the experience that one meets the best comrades in no-man's-land. I've always been pleased with my troops (Mannschaft) in war and my readership in peace. A hand that holds a weapon with honor, holds a pen with honor. It is stronger than any atom bomb, or any rotary press." With these words Jünger bestows an honour on us, his readership. He equates us with his comrades-in-arms in times of peace, but is it a wonder after all? If you are a reader of Ernst Jünger, you must be in either one of two camps, those who consider his opus with genuine admiration or the detractors, those sceptics, "whose contribution does not equal to one blade of grass, one mosquito wing".

Ernst Jünger was both literally and metaphorically a warrior of the 20th Century. Not only did he survive two world wars but also the ideologies of the 20s and 30s. He would cross swords with the bourgeoisie, and later after the war with the Frankfurter School of philosophy and Gruppe 47 proponents. But all of his achievements both on the battlefield of war and on paper serve as a guide to our being in the world, above all his achievements are not only personal, they are also a contribution to us his readership.

Jünger's first book, The Storm of Steel gives us an insight to his character and his future development as an author and individual. It is here that the seeds are sown, that great men of any war are not soldiers; they are warriors, they fight to test themselves and above all to uphold the truth, whatever the reality of that may be. They do not fight for ideologies, but instead they are initiated in earth, blood and fire. By his own admission Jünger was never a good soldier. He admitted to being useless in basic training and the field drills. In his own words: "I had hoped to go from there (the battle field) without being praised. From the beginning, I've always had particular allergy to honors. That this happens to be the case, I probably owe to field marshal Von Hindenberg, who said to me in his sonorous voice: 'Don't you know that this is not good that the king of Prussia has awarded his highest order to such a young man. Nothing much came of my comrades, who received the Pour le Merit in 1864, 1866, and 1870.' He was right. In two world wars, I was only able to achieve Captain. And could be happy that it didn't cost me my head as it did Rommel and other brothers in my order."

Jünger made up for this seeming lack through his bravery and concern for his comrades in no-man's-land. He was one of the few who survived the trenches. He went through the baptism of fire and iron to be wounded 14 times (not an insignificant number). "Exactly at the times when the force of things threatened to hammer the soul soft, men were found who unawares danced it away as over nothingness." Jünger reflects introducing to us the knowledge that the human soul is indeed stronger than the material world, a point not lost on his readers.

He attributes his survival, not to any skill of his own, but rather to the higher power of fate, a portent of his later writings. Jünger leads us through this most nihilistic of wars, with the cool eye of the observer. In its midst the only meaning he can find is a personal one, one of the initiation of life and death. All of those men who survived the horrors of this mass-suicide found one of two things, either the inward strength to master the madness of the material war or insanity. Jünger found out who he was by the end of the war and would carry on this inward strength to the end of his life, not only benefiting himself but his readers too.

Never being concerned about the shells that went off around him, would equally help him in the ideological years after the war. After Versailles Jünger responded to the selling out of Germany by embarking on a war of words with the bourgeois Weimar Republic supporters. Jünger contributed to any cause, be it right or left on the political spectrum, that wanted the best for Germany. These were Jünger's nationalistic years.

The fires of Jünger's youth were not completely spent on the battlefield. Attacking all those people he envisioned as selling out Germany brought him into the centre of many radical parties that longed to have him as spokesman. The Nazis courted him, as did the Communists. He wrote for the various propaganda organs of the right and left. He was even invited to a place on Nazi electoral list, which he luckily declined, a near miss. Later Jünger will stand accused of writing a thinly veiled critique of the Nazi tyrannies in On the Marble Cliffs. The Volkische Beobachter stated that Ernst Jünger..."begibt sich in der Nähe eines Kopfschüsses." Which loosely translated means that he is coming very close to a bullet in the head, one of the methods used by the Nazis for political executions, another brush with death.

Jünger himself says that he had finished with the Nazis after Krystal Nacht, the Nazis' attack on the Jewish businesses of Germany. It didn't take this erudite observer much to recognise that both Hitler and the Nazis were proletarian scum and that nothing higher could ever come from them. On one occasion Jünger was asked what he thought of Hitler, he replied, "Er war nur ein kleiner Mann". (He was just a little man.)

But with the war over that was not the end of his troubles, now he had to deal with the Allies, who believed him to be a contributing ideologue to the Nazi war machine. Jünger refused to undergo the denazifaction program of the Allies and as a result was hung with the prohibition to publish for some years, from 1945 to 1949 to be precise. Now the attacks would come from the liberal left at the head of which was the Frankfurter School. Still Jünger took it all in his stride and would gain in stature in the post war Germany, until the chancellor of Germany, Helmut Kohl and the prime minister of France, Francois Mitterand would visit him in his Wilflingen home. Recognised as a man of letters, his death at 102 was mourned by all.

But what was Jünger's contribution? How are we, his readership, to profit from his experience? We might profit in many ways as the scope of Jünger's opus is vast, covering such diverse topics as botany and etymology or "War as an inner experience" and modern nihilism, but to me the triumvirate of the Krieger (warrior), Anarch, and the Waldgaenger are his legacy and we, his readership, are his inheritors.

Paul Noack in his biography of Jünger's life sums up for us the nature of Jünger's contribution with these words. Jünger believed "…that every failure only comes from ourselves, and therefore can also be overcome in ourselves. That is the way that he (Jünger) wanted to show: he guides Over the Line through the Wall of Time into a future of a different sort."

And it is Jünger's opus that gives us the means to bridge the modern nihilism of this age through the figures of the Krieger, Anarch and Waldgaenger. I have spoken of the significance of Jünger's life from the perspective of a warrior and its potential differences with the soldier as well as its indications for us. Now we must turn to the Anarch and the Waldgaenger, which are both an extension of each other and the warrior.

Let us state unequivocally that the Anarch is not an anarchist, or to use Jünger's own definition, "The Anarch is to the anarchist, what the monarch is to the monarchist..." So it follows that sovereignty is the meaning sought here. The Anarch is sovereign like the monarch. And from this conviction of sovereignty, he does not need to rely on others. But what is the frame in which this becomes necessary or even desirable? In our modern times this approach to politics is desirable, even lifesaving. Again it must be said that Jünger's own character typifies this sort of behaviour in the face of the tyranny of modern political nihilism. The Anarch is capable of survival because he can outwardly assume any form, be it a clerk behind a counter or a soldier in the military, while inwardly he remains free, able to think and observe. He, in his inward migration, does not nihilistically implode into himself, but remains aware of the circumstances around himself but not affected by them. It is not his goal to be dialectically resistant to the tyranny, rather he is observant as if following the Confucian code: "Attacking false systems merely harms you." Aware of the inherent falseness of any sort of tyranny, he does not need to jeopardise his life or that of others by attacking something that itself will come to an end. Rather he becomes a preserver of knowledge, a philosopher, poet and historian. He waits, studies, and preserves until a time when he can contribute. Otherwise it is his duty to pass on what he knows, preserving it for a time when his inheritors can put it to use.

Jünger himself in one description of the Anarch says: "...His inner strength is far greater. In fact, the Anarch's state is the state that each man carries within himself. He embodies the viewpoint of Stirner,...that is the Anarch is unique. Stirner said, "Nothing gets the best of me." The Anarch is really the natural man. He is corrected only by the resistance he comes up against when he wishes to extend his will further than is permitted by the prevailing circumstances. In his ambition to realise himself, he inevitably encounters certain limits; but if they did not exist his expansion would be indefinite..."

"The Anarch can don any disguise. He remains wherever he feels comfortable; but once a place no longer suits him he moves on. He can, for instance, work tranquilly behind a counter or in an office. But upon leaving it at night, he plays an entirely different roll. Convinced of his own inner independence, he can even show a certain benevolence to the powers that be. He's like Stirner, he's a man who, if necessary, can join a group, form a bond with something concrete; but seldom with ideas. The Anarchist is an idealist; but the Anarch, on the contrary, is a pragmatist. He sees what can serve him - him and the common good; but he is closed to ideological excesses. It is in this sense that I define the Anarch's position as a completely natural attitude. First of all, there is a man, and then comes his environment. That is the position I favor at the moment."

Jünger took this position in World War II and before, during the tyranny of the Nazi regime. He became invisible despite his writings in the Wehrmacht. This also enabled him to have contact with the resistance within Paris and the German General Staff itself. His writing entitled The Peace, (Der Friede) was a plan for post-war Europe, although contrary to every Nazi policy, it found a great reception among the Staff, even if fate would never allow it to be played out.

The Anarch gives us the means to observe and understand the materialist age we find ourselves in, without jeopardising our own sovereignty. Because the Anarch is the natural form of man, by Jünger's own definition, we should not be mistaken that we are talking about the individualist or individualism as it has become known today. Individualism itself is an extension of the rampant nihilism of our age and therefore an illness to be overcome. The individual is a private being closed in his own world. The individualist even rejects the naturalness of a social milieu free of the exploitation of the modern servile state. If we are talking of the Anarch as a natural man then we must also mean a man who is social in his form. The sovereign individual is always capable of joining together with others of his kind. It means to be an individual only in the truth with which one faces oneself, otherwise it has nothing to due with individualism. Still this Anarch may not find many people who understand him or what it means to be natural. If this figure is a threat to the status quo, he is an Anarch, if not we must suspect the individual.

By extension the Waldgaenger is the Anarch who has had to retreat into the wilderness because he has been exposed as the Anarch, the free sovereign man and is in danger of being killed. So he must range the forest, or the city for that matter, but it requires a style of resistance to the forces of tyranny. He will have to take up the fight and this is the indication that the Anarch again is not an individual in Jünger's meaning, because although the Waldgaenger can and might have to fight alone, it is futile to do it without support, one cannot live the Hollywood film of the lone hero. This is simply a psychological indoctrination for the masses enforcing the nihilistic idea of the individual and must therefore be recognised for what it is, a baseless myth.

The retreat into the forest comes today under certain conditions which Jünger describes for us, "The Waldgang (retreat into the forest) followed upon proscription. Through it man asserted his will to survive by virtue of his own strength. That was held to be honorable, and it is still today in spite of all indications to the contrary. Waldgängers (Rangers in the forest) are all those, isolated by all great upheavals, and are confronted with ultimate annihilation."

"Since this could be the fate of many, indeed, of all, another defining characteristic must be added: The Waldgaenger (the Ranger) is determined to offer resistance. He is willing to enter into a struggle that appears hopeless. Hence he is distinguished by an immediate relationship to freedom which expresses itself in the fact that he is prepared to oppose the automatism and reject its ethical conclusion of fatalism. If we look at him in this fashion we shall understand the roll which the Waldgang plays not only in our thoughts but also in the realities of our age. Everyone today is subject to coercion and the attempts to banish it are bold experiments upon which depends a destiny far greater than the fate of those who dare to undertake them."

Here we have it in its essence, we see its nature as broad capable of taking many forms, but all to the same end, the preservation of the dignity and freedom of man in its original and most natural form. This is beyond the polemics of modern philosophy and politics. It is the removal of the coercion that has become characteristic of the modern mega-state and its master the banking titan.

Jünger: "The Waldgang is not to be understood as a form of Anarchism directed against world technology (technik), although this is a temptation, particularly for those who strive to regain a myth. Undoubtedly, mythology will appear again. It is always present and arises in a propitious hour like a treasure coming to the surface, but man does not return to the realm of myth, he re-encounters it when the age is out of joint and in the magic circle of extreme danger..."

The Waldgang is the stuff of myth, but not created by the likes of us. Myth has its root in the disclosure of the divine and it is only the natural man, a man who is beyond the concepts of liberty, fraternity and equality that might achieve this. Where the modern concepts of the Enlightenment prevail, so prevails the tyranny of the state. Here the Anarch becomes potent in his reflection even dangerous, he has recognised the tyranny and if he is exposed he must choose the method of retreat into the forest or pay the price.

In our age we cannot underestimate the heritage that Jünger has left us. All around us we see the levelling effects of technology. It becomes more and more difficult to be free in the golden cage of the world state. Who are the men and women that are still sovereign in this age? It is certainly becoming more difficult to find real ‘Anarchs’ devoted to learning and freedom, but they are there; some of them are the readership that Jünger honours so greatly and others are unaware of Jünger, but possess a natural inclination to his thoughts.

These ideas have never been popular, even with some of his loyal readers. Jünger himself had burnt himself on the hot iron of modern democracy. Naturally those who believe in the saying of Winston Churchill, "Democracy is the worst form of government, but the best we've got," will certainly disagree with Jünger's political analysis, but the further we go down this strange path called the modern world, the more we must realise how much Jünger's political analysis rings true. Modern Democracy is a sham, covering up the all too real and undemocratic exploitation of people, wealth, and resources, siphoning it off into the hands of the few, in the name of the many. We have entered the age of the Anarch and who knows what will come next?

ABDALBARR BRAUN - 7 March 2002


Link to this text : http://scot.altermedia.info/index.php?p=446&more=1&c=1

vendredi, 24 février 2012

Du retrait

philosophie,réflexions personnelles,claude bourrinet

Du retrait

par Claude BOURRINET


Dans le film d’Akira Kurosawa, Kagemusha. L’ombre du guerrier, une fameuse scène de bataille illustre la stratégie inspirée par le défunt seigneur Shingen Takeda, qui fait du clan une « montagne » inamovible et invincible. Cette doctrine, apparemment dictée uniquement par des impératifs stratégiques, est reconduite par son sosie, voleur et vagabond, usurpateur de sa fonction seigneuriale, dont nul, sinon quelques vassaux, ne connaît l’identité. Mais, démasqué, le « kagemusha » est obligé d’abandonner le pouvoir au fougueux fils du chef charismatique, le téméraire Katsuyori Takeda. Si bien que la charge de cavalerie et d’infanterie menée à la bataille de Nagashino, face au feu des mousquets livrés par les Occidentaux, est réduite à néant. La mort et la destruction ont suivi la vaine agitation et la présomption.


L’œuvre d’Akira Kurosawa est d’une profondeur rarement égalée. Ses films sont une méditation imprégnée d’esprit zen. L’amertume liée à l’exercice dérisoire du pouvoir et du jeu mortel des apparences souille toute aspiration à la pureté ou à la paix, sinon même à la force véritable. C’est le cas par exemple dans cette adaptation emblématique de Macbeth qu’est Le Château de l’araignée, véritable chef d’œuvre irrigué par l’esthétique du théâtre .


L’analogie avec l’histoire millénaire de notre civilisation occidentale n’est pas fortuite. Jadis, la lutte entre le Sacerdoce et l’Empire, entre le pouvoir spirituel de l’Église, tentée par la théocratie, et celui, terrestre, du Saint-Empire romain germanique, a ouvert la voie à la révolte du kshatriya, du guerrier, et, finalement, a permis aux États modernes d’asseoir une domination dégagée des contraintes de la Tradition, entraînant une dérive dont nous sommes les acteurs. Le déséquilibre entre la force armée et l’inspiration spirituelle a mené à un déchirement entre les deux tensions structurantes de la société, entre deux dynamismes qui, sous l’angle de la Tradition, se doivent d’être unis pour empêcher le monde de sombrer dans le déclin, dans l’âge de fer. En effet, l’axe central, l’essieu qui meut la roue, le «  moteur immobile », source de légitimation et d’énergie, noue un lien harmonieux entre l’impératif contemplatif,  la méditation, et l’éthique de l’engagement, le devoir chevaleresque de dépassement et de sacrifice. Le regard tourné vers l’ailleurs transcendantal, vers le monde divin, vers l’Un, « informe » (donne forme et sens) à l’immanente pluralité du monde humain. Son absence serait l’éclatement de monades erratiques. La rupture entre les deux puissance souveraines, dont l’une, par sa proximité avec les forces démoniaques et telluriques de la nature se devait d’être soumise à l’autre, supérieure par sa capacité à donner une signification au déploiement de l’action, a éloigné la société, progressivement, de toute validité, de tout bien-fondé, jusqu’à ce que la guerre elle-même, mobilisation extrême au service du massacre et de la destruction totales, fût  l’expression du nihilisme et de la volonté intégrale de puissance.


Dès lors que la pente est prise, il est presque impossible de remonter vers l’amont. L’action détient une supériorité par rapport à l’esprit de méditation, une séduction capable de toucher vigoureusement la nature humaine, qui est fascinée par le bruit, la fureur et les modifications spectaculaires du monde, et prodigue en dépenses d’énergie et de sang. C’est là le côté sombre de la condition guerrière, mais, notre époque, si avancée dans la voie plébéienne, met en sus l’obligation de résultat, l’impérieuse nécessité de voir bouger les choses. Aussi l’avenir semble-t-il le produit de la technique. La médiatisation prométhéenne entre l’homme et la nature s’est autonomisée, et le monde, création de l’artifex, redevable des lois de la métis, de la ruse et de l’astuce, du savoir-faire et du calcul, est devenu une seconde nature, un milieu où le jeu se conjugue au caprice, le désir de possession à celui de destruction. Si bien que l’homme, ce sorcier, éprouve l’hybris enivrante d’être un dieu pour lui-même.


Notre âge, de façon ironique, a vu dans le même temps une survalorisation du geste et sa perte de substance. Les combats d’ombres et leur spectacularisation rendent  la politique aussi impuissante qu’un coup d’épée dans l’eau.

Claude Bourrinet




Article printed from Europe Maxima: http://www.europemaxima.com


URL to article: http://www.europemaxima.com/?p=2326

lundi, 13 février 2012

Leo Strauss—Immigration Enthusiast?


Leo Strauss—Immigration Enthusiast?

For many, Leo Strauss is a man of mystery. Was he, as Myles Burnyeat of Cambridge University suggested many years ago in The New York Review of Books, a “sphinx without a secret”, not a genuine philosopher but rather a proponent of “ruthless anti-idealism” who provided intellectual backing for an aggressive American foreign policy?

Kevin MacDonald takes a different view, holding that “Strauss crafted his vision of an aristocratic elite manipulating the masses as a Jewish survival strategy.”(MacDonald, Cultural Insurrections, Occidental Press 2007, p.163).

In his illuminating book Leo Strauss and the Conservative Movement in America: A Critical Appraisal, the distinguished intellectual historian Paul Gottfried rejects what these approaches have in common: their picture of Strauss as an enemy of liberal democracy. Though Strauss earned the respect of the rightwing legal theorist Carl Schmitt, he was by no means, Gottfried maintains, a man of the Right. To the contrary, and despite some ambiguous remarks made early in his career, he remained throughout his long sojourn in America a convinced liberal democrat.

Gottfried traces the misapprehension to Strauss’s popular lectures in 1949 for the Walgreen Foundation, published in 1953 as Natural Right and History. Strauss appeared to many as the vindicator of natural law against the relativism and nihilism that threatened to weaken America in its Cold War against communism. Gottfried writes:

“A one-time teacher of mine, Anton Hermann Chroust...used to joke about Strauss’s visit to South Bend: ‘The natural law Catholics came out in force, and as soon as St. Leo started talking, they were like Moses receiving the Law.’”

Gottfried calls attention to the role of Willmoore Kendall of National Review in propagating the myth of Strauss as a high-powered philosopher of conservatism. Kendall, himself an eminent conservative political theorist, was a hero-worshipper, and Eric Voegelin vied with Strauss as the object of his intellectual star-gazing.

But despite the adulation of Kendall and other conservatives, Gottfried notes that Strauss was in politics an “FDR-Truman Democrat---that is, someone who found even the uncertain Republican Dwight Eisenhower to be a bit far to the right for his taste.” Strauss abhorred Joe McCarthy and feared a rightwing populist outbreak.

Still, whatever his personal political opinions, does not Strauss remain useful as a defender of classical philosophy against modern-day relativists and other enemies of the Right?

Gottfried does not think so. Though he recognizes Strauss’s remarkable linguistic and scholarly abilities, he argues that Strauss was in not in fact an advocate of either ancient philosophy or natural law.

Despite Strauss’ close and careful study of Plato and Aristotle and his ostensible praise for the ancient polis, he did not derive from the classical sources doctrines designed to correct the unwisdom of the modern world. Strauss found in Plato, for example, not the doctrine of eternal forms that most scholars discern in his work but rather a search for truth that eventuates in no fixed conclusions: “Unfortunately, Strauss and his disciples never show that what Plato seems to accept is not what he in fact believes.”

Some of Strauss’s followers go further: Mary Nichols gives Aristotle “a recognizably progressive gloss.” Aristotle’s support for slavery, she thinks, is not what it seems. Modern democrats can embrace Aristotle without worry.

But what of natural law? Here too Gottfried maintains that Strauss’s conservative defenders have misunderstood the Master. Strauss, contrary to his Catholic friends, opposed Thomist natural law:

“Advances in the natural sciences had shaken the cosmology that was attached to an earlier understanding of man’s relation to the universe, ands so there was no plausible way—or so one might read into Strauss without too much reaching—of returning to medieval metaphysical notions.”

If Strauss thought that Thomist natural law rested on outdated views, he can hardly be taken as its advocate.

Cannot those who would see in Strauss a conservative at least take solace in one point? Did he not offer sharp attacks on relativism and historicism?

Indeed he did, says Gottfried, but precisely in his attack on historicism he distanced himself from the Right.


In contrast with the Left, which stress principles supposedly true regardless of time, place, or manner, the Right has exalted race, nation, and community. The immigration controversy, key to readers of VDARE.com, illustrates this division of opinion. Leftists scorn the attachment of a people to its national territory, defending instead an alleged right of everyone to live where he wishes, regardless of historical circumstance. Those on the Right reject such nonsense, emphasizing, with Taine, la race, le milieu, le moment.

But in this dispute between universal and particular, Strauss took the side of the Left. He had little use for Edmund Burke and the German Romantic conservatives of the nineteenth century. We must, Strauss argued, guard ourselves against the “waves of modernity” that followed the American Revolution. In Gottfried’s summary:

“These waves were due to the value-relativist British counterrevolutionary Edmund Burke and to various nineteenth-century German romantic worshippers of History, some of whom are mistaken for ‘conservatives’.”

Gottfried must confront an objection to his interpretation of Strauss. If in fact Strauss cloaked his liberal democratic beliefs in rhetoric redolent of the ancients, would not conservatives have eventually discovered the ruse and abandoned him?

Kendall and his fellow Catholic conservatives have long since departed the scene. There are today a few Catholics, like Daniel Mahoney and Pierre Manent, influenced by Strauss, but they are not Straussians of the strict observance. Why would the conservatives of today embrace a false friend?

Gottfried has an ingenious response to this problem. The neoconservatives, he says, exercise immense influence over the American Right because of their control of so many foundations, journals and newspapers. They are in fact pseudo-conservatives, who, just like Strauss, preach liberal democracy disguised as the wisdom of the ancients and the American Founders. It is in their interest to elevate Strauss as a conservative sage, and they have achieved great success in doing so.

The neoconservatives in particular appeal to Strauss to support one of their key doctrines: a foreign policy for America based on the spread of “democracy” worldwide. Gottfried writes:

“Straussians contributed to the process by which the conservative movement came to redefine itself during the Cold War as the defender of ‘democratic values’. . .a bellicose missionary  spirit is very much in evidence, but it is doubtful that one could link it to anything identifiably right-wing. “

 Gottfried calls attention to another theme that neoconservatives draw from Strauss: the alleged dangers that stem from German nationalism and German philosophy. In one revealing comment, Strauss wrote: “All profound German longings… all those longings for the origins or, negatively expressed, all German dissatisfaction with modernity pointed   toward a third Reich, for Germany was to be the core even  of Nietzsche’s Europe ruling the planet.”

Gottfried finds “a major concern among Strauss’s students, namely that the specifically German path toward a viciously anti-Semitic form of fascism must never again be taken in Germany or anywhere else.” (p.58)

Gottfried argues strongly that Strauss does not belong on the Right. But he must confront yet another objection. If Strauss was not a conservative but rather a liberal democrat, why do so many of his critics take him to be a rightwing elitist, if not an outright fascist?

Here once again Gottfried blames the neoconservatives and their concerted influence. He bring to the fore Shadia Drury, who views Strauss as an immensely learned scholar but dangerous anti-democrat, and other leftist critics like her. He writes:

“Such critics have reinforced the image that the Straussians have cultivated for themselves, as patriotic Americans with vast humanistic learning.  And the Straussians have returned the favor by showering attention on their preferred critics.”

In doing so, the Straussians ignore, because they cannot answer, the most cogent criticisms of their Master: those that stem from the genuine Right. As Gottfried puts it:

“Significantly, Spinoza expert Brayton Polka, American religious historian Barry Allen Shain, and linguistic philosopher David Gordon have all devoted many pages of criticism to the defects of the Straussian interpretive grid, without eliciting appropriate responses. Basic to these criticisms is the contention that the Straussians misinterpret the historical past either by ignoring it or by refusing to notice the religious aspects of what they style ‘modernity’”

Gottfried has omitted one of the most penetrating of Strauss’s assailants—himself. In a brilliant passage, he challenges Strauss’s key claim that political philosophy is the most fundamental branch of philosophy:

“It seems that Strauss is providing a somewhat personal view of ‘philosophy.’ He does not deem as more than incidental to his inquiry those metaphysical aspects of classical philosophy that mattered to Plato and Aristotle; nor does Strauss attach to his ‘political philosophy’ the epistemic assumptions that mark Plato’s discussion of the Good, the Just, and the Prudent.”

Leo Strauss and the Conservative Movement in America: A Critical Appraisal is far and away the best critical examination of Strauss we have. It is no diatribe: Gottfried is fully appreciative of Strauss’s merits as a scholar and thinker. But he makes unmistakably clear, however, that Strauss was not a man of the Right. 


John Venn (Email him) says he is “a student of the passing scene”

jeudi, 09 février 2012

Ernst Jünger @ http://www.centrostudilaruna.it/

Ernst Jünger @ http://www.centrostudilaruna.it/

Sezione multilingue dedicata a Ernst Jünger (29.III.1895-17.II.1998), alla sua opera e al suo pensiero.


Luca Leonello Rimbotti, La resurrezione europea
Alfredo Cattabiani, Le forbici dell’Anarca
Julius Evola, The Gordian Knot
Stefano Di Ludovico, Jünger, il tempo e gli orologi
Ernst Jünger, On danger
Gianfranco de Turris, Evola e Jünger
Ernst Jünger, La Tradición
Alberto Lombardo, Ancora Ernst Jünger
Alfredo Cattabiani, L’Anarca fra i Titani

mercredi, 08 février 2012

The communitarian critique of liberalism left and right

The communitarian critique of liberalism left and right

by Graham Lister

Ex: http://majorityrights.com/

For the philosophical communitarian, the Sartrean cogito, spontaneously reinventing itself ex nihilo, permanently free to choose and revise its definition of the good, is a fiction that pervades all modern liberalism. From Hobbes, Locke and Kant, through to Mill and Rawls, the rootless, solitary and “unencumbered self”, as Michael Sandel describes it, prior to and independent of its ends and rationally deliberating on the value of its voluntary attachments, is adopted as the starting point of social analysis.

This conception of the subject, it is argued, precludes from the start the possibility of genuinely communal forms of association, of “constitutive” communities “bound by moral ties antecedent to choice”. This is why communitarians stress the cultural constitution of the subject, the way the individual forms his or her identity, sense of self, and intuitive system of values by inheriting and passing on an unchosen legacy of collective orientations, shared meanings and standards, networks of kinship and pre-contractual forms of solidarity which are a prerequisite for, rather than the outcome of, the subject’s capacity for moral commitment.

Rising discontinuity is accompanied by the diversity of visible cultures and lifestyles. This is promoted by the density of urban populations, high social mobility and change, unprecedented choice for the individual consumer - albeit at the potential cost of a rapid decline in the overall diversity of our natural stocks - and the impact of transport and communications technology, especially on the tourist industry. Exposure to different forms of life, particularly those that are too exclusive or stylized to permit participatory understanding by outsiders, inevitably creates a sense of cultural relativism. Where ethnic, class, national and religious traditions do intermingle and combine, discrete cultural narratives are severed or reinvented, and hybrid cultural forms emerge which lack historical precedent, thus weakening the constitutive bonds between generations.

There is also the well-documented impact of the mass media, another factor which has served to heighten many of the trends already noted. The entertainment media have encouraged the privatization of society and the decline of face-to-face interaction through which communal narratives are reaffirmed and passed on. The proliferation of sophisticated images has blurred the boundaries between the real and the imaginary and saturated social life with ubiquitous representations of novelty and difference, representations which typically incorporate easily identifiable elements of ordinary life and recycle them in impossibly exotic, erotic, and alluringly faultless images. Moral and cultural relativism reflects the success with which the media has, by providing simulated substitutes for human interaction, made us wide-eyed strangers to those lives and cultures whose basic elements - from the mundane aspects of work and play, to the feelings and puzzles which human existence gives rise to - we all share in common.

At the same time, our insatiable appetite for remote and alien experience has attenuated our capacity to recover something of the child’s original wonder at the everyday world, to yield to a curiosity for the most familiar aspects of our surroundings, to find joy in the simple passage of the seasons, to marvel at the growth of children, to renew our affections and attachments without the aid of imported novelty and change.

Today’s “imaginative hedonism”, this limitless and self-gratifying appetite for rootless novelty and conquest which seems so hostile to our need to re-establish an ethic of self-limitation, is not a “postmodern” phenomenon, as is largely assumed, but is better described as a characteristic of “hyper-modernity”, in which society has failed to steer the emancipatory dynamic of modernity towards a political end. Daniel Bell saw it as a radical extension of the trends in modernist culture itself, reinforced by the hedonistic compensatory mechanisms of organized capitalism. Christopher Lasch believed its origins lie in our failure to achieve psychological individuation, a process demanding that we repudiate our memories of pre-natal bliss and find connections with a world that is independent of our wishes yet responsive to our needs. Robert Bellah and his colleagues identified the clear emergence of this “expressive individualism” in nineteenth-century America, contrasting it with a scientific culture of utilitarian calculation to which it was both a reaction and a complement. And with greater precision, Colin Campbell has located the religious source of the consumerist outlook in the Pietist strand of the same Protestant ethic that helped generate the entrepreneurial spirit of capitalism.

For the philosophical communitarians, then, it is the cultural and historical heritage of individuals, their identities as “bearers of a tradition”, which provides the moral particularity essential for an authentic life. In MacIntyre’s account, it is the roles and attachments of one’s family, one’s profession, one’s city or nation, which incur “a variety of debts, inheritances, rightful expectations and obligations” that “constitute the given of my life, my moral starting point”.

This theme is taken up by Sandel, who rejects what he refers to as liberalism’s depiction of a “deontological” self whose identity is never tied to its aims or attachments. He writes:

“We cannot regard ourselves as independent in this way without great cost to those loyalties and convictions whose moral force consists partly in the fact that living by them is inseparable from understanding ourselves as the particular persons we are.

... Allegiances such as these … go beyond the obligations I voluntarily incur and the ‘natural duties’ I owe to human beings as such. They allow that to some I owe more than justice requires or even permits, not by reason of agreements I have made but instead in virtue of those more or less enduring attachments and commitments which taken together partly define the person I am”.

A person without such constitutive attachments, Sandel continues, would be lacking in moral character and depth:

“For to have character is to know that I move in a history I neither summon nor command, which carries consequences none the less for my choices and conduct. It draws me closer to some and more distant from others; it makes some aims more appropriate, others less so”.

The “deontological self” which is the starting point to liberal contract theory is, by contrast, a self so bereft of character that it is incapable of self-knowledge, and therefore self-direction. Being “unencumbered” by its conception of the good, having no attributes and aims other than those it has voluntarily chosen, its enquiry into its own motives and ends “can only be an exercise in arbitrariness”. Sandel’s belief that “some relative fixity of character appears essential to prevent the lapse into arbitrariness which the deontological self is unable to avoid”, is shared by MacIntyre, who sees the work of Sartre as the epitome of this liberal individualism. Should we follow MacIntyre and dispense with Sartre’s existentialism for depicting “a self that can have no history”, that is “entirely distinct from any particular social role which it may happen to assume”, and that creates a human life “composed of discrete actions which lead nowhere, which have no order”?

Comments, thoughts, reactions?

Ex: http://majorityrights.com/

dimanche, 05 février 2012

Rex Fairburn

Rex Fairburn

By Kerry Bolton

Ex: http://www.counter-currents.com/

Editor’s Note:

A. R. D. Fairburn was born on February 2, 1904. Fairburn was a poet, painter, critic, essayist, and advocate of Social Credit, New Zealand Nationalism, and organic farming. In commemoration,we are publishing the following expanded version of Kerry Bolton’s essay on Fairburn. To read Fairburn’s magnificent poem “Dominion,” click here [2].

A. R. D. “Rex” Fairburn, 1904–1957, is not usually identified with the “Right.” As a central figure in the development of a New Zealand national literature, much of the contemporary self-appointed literary establishment would no doubt wish to identify Fairburn with Marxism or liberalism, as were other leading literary friends of Fairburn’s such as the Communist R. A. K. Mason.

However, the primary influences on Fairburn were distinctly non-Left, and include D. H. Lawrence, Nietzsche, Oswald Spengler, and of course Social Credit’s Major C. H. Douglas.

While Fairburn described himself at times as an “anarchist,”[1] it was of a most unorthodox type, being neither Left-wing nor Libertarian. For Fairburn outspokenly rejected all the baggage dear to the Left, including feminism and internationalism. His “anarchism” was the type of individualism of the Right that called for a return to decentralized communities comprised of self-reliant craftsmen and farmers. His creed was distinctly nationalistic and based on the spiritual and the biological components of history and culture, both concepts being antithetical to any form of Leftism.

We feel more than justified then in identifying Fairburn as an “Artist of the Right.”

Rejection of Rationalism

Fairburn was born in modest though middle class circumstances. He was proud of being a fourth generation New Zealander related to the missionary Colenso.

Although critical of the Church hierarchy and briefly involved with the Rationalist Association, Fairburn was for most of his life a spiritual person, believing that the individual becomes most profoundly who he is by striving towards God. He believed in a basic Christian ethic minus any moralism. Fairburn soon realized that rationalism by itself answers nothing and that it rejects the dream world that is the source of creativity. He was in agreement here with other poets of the Right such as Yeats, and often stated throughout his life his rejection of materialism.

While he concurred with his friend Geoffrey Potocki de Montalk, who called poets a “spiritual aristocracy,” Fairburn at first thought socialism was the answer to “free artists of economic, worldly shackles,” and even made sporadic favorable references to Communism.[2] However, in particular he looked to the non-doctrinaire socialism not of a political theorist but of another artistic luminary, Oscar Wilde, whose essay on the subject[3] he enthusiastically recommended to Potocki, Wilde advocating the elimination of the “burden” of private property to free the creative spirit from economic drudgery.[4]

Potocki would have no belief in socialism of any type other than “national socialism,” and Fairburn would find the answer to the economic question he was looking for in Social Credit. Nonetheless, the early socialist interests were part of Fairburn’s quest for a more humane system.

Fairburn throughout his life rejected any form of “materialism” and rationalism, and it seems likely that in his youth he had not realized that these are the predicates of communism and most forms of socialism, having rather a romantic ideal of “socialism” and even of “communism.” The counting-house mentality came to be seen by Fairburn as intrinsic to rationalism and it repelled his sense of the spiritual.

having rejected Jonah and Genesis,
contrived to erect
a towering edifice of belief
on the assumption that God
is an abridgement of the calculus
and lived happily
ever after.
What is adequate suffices.[5]


Potocki had left New Zealand in disgust at the cultural climate and persuaded Fairburn to join him in London, since New Zealand prevented them from doing what they were born for, “to make and to mould a New Zealand civilization,” as Potocki stated it.

Fairburn arrived in London in 1930. Like Potocki, he was not impressed with bohemian society and the Bloomsbury intellectuals who were riddled with homosexuality, for which both Potocki and Fairburn had an abiding dislike.[6] He was reading and identifying with Roy Campbell’s biting satire and ridicule of Bloomsbury,[7] and there was much of the “wild colonial boy” in both personalities.

However, away from the bohemianism, intellectualism, and pretentiousness of the city, Fairburn came to appreciate the ancestral attachment with England that was still relevant to New Zealanders through a continuing, persistent “earth-memory.”[8]

In London he felt the decay and decadence of the city. Like Knut Hamsun and Henry Williamson, Fairburn conceived of a future “tilling the soil.” He now stated: “I’m going to be a peasant, if necessary, to keep in touch with life,” and he and his future wife lived for a year at a thatch-roofed cottage in Wiltshire.

Regarding a land and culture in metaphysical terms gave Fairburn a deeper spirituality than he could find in modern religion, while early eschewing rationalism and godlessness, and the land became fundamental to his world-view. His reading of Spengler would have made him acutely aware of the land and the farmer/peasant as the foundations of a healthy culture, and of the symptoms of cultural decay and of the predominance of money-values in the “Winter” cycle of a civilization, when the land becomes denuded of people, debt-ridden, with foreclosures and urban drift.

The barn is bare of hoof and horn,
the yard is empty of its herds;
the thatch is grey with age and torn,
and spattered with the dung of birds.

The well is full of newts, the chain
long broken, and the spindle cracked,
and deep in nettles stands the wain
three-wheeled, with rotten hay half-stacked.

Where are the farmer and his bride
who came from their honeymoon in spring
filled full with gaudy hope and pride,
and made the farm a good paying thing? . . .[9]

Social Credit

In 1931 Fairburn was introduced to A. R. Orage,[10] who had published New Zealander Katherine Mansfield, and who was editing the New English Weekly which was bringing forth a new generation of talents to English literature, including Ezra Pound and T. S. Eliot. Orage was a “guild socialist,” advocating a return to the medieval guilds which had upheld craftsmanship and represented interests according to one’s calling rather than one’s political party. Orage met C. H. Douglas in 1918 and had himself become a seminal influence on Social Credit. Orage probably introduced Fairburn to Douglas around 1931.[11]

Fairburn  had read Spengler’s Decline of the West at least as early as 1930. He saw that New Zealand as a cultural outpost of Europe was just as much subject to Spengler’s cyclical laws of decline as the Occident.[12] It would have been with the fatalist eyes of a Spenglerian that Fairburn observed London and bohemian society and recognized in them the symptoms of decadence of which Spengler wrote, retreating to rural England where cultural health could still be found.

However, Fairburn felt that the vitality of individuals could be the answer to a reinvigorated culture, and break the cycle of decay, rather than the rise of  a Caesar that Spengler stated was a kind of “last hurrah” of a Civilization before its eclipse,[13] despite Fairburn’s earlier belief that Social Credit could only be “ushered in by a dictatorship.”[14] This anti-statist, individualist belief reflects two major influences on Fairburn, that of Nietzsche and of D. H. Lawrence,[15] who espoused “heroic vitalism” as the basis of history.[16]

Spengler however, also had much to say on the role of money and plutocracy in the final or “Winter” epoch of a civilization, and of the last cultural resurgence that saw the overthrow of money by “blood,” or what we might call the instinctual.[17] It is not too speculative to believe that Fairburn saw “Social Credit” as the practical means by which the money-power could be overthrown through economic reform rather than through an authoritarian “Caesar” figure. Fairburn returned to a Spenglerian theme in 1932 when writing to his communist friend, the poet R. A. K. Mason: “A civilization founded on Materialism can’t last any time historically speaking of course. But it may be necessary to go through the logical end of our present trend of development before we can return to the right way of life.”[18]

While Fairburn agreed with Marx that capitalism causes dehumanization, he rejected the Marxist interpretation of history as based on class war and economics. Materialistic interpretations of history were at odds with Fairburn’s belief that it is the Infinite that touches man. Art is a manifestation of the eternal, of pre-existing forms. It is therefore the calling of the artist to see what is always here and bring it forth.[19]

Fairburn met the Soviet press attaché in England but concluded that the USSR had turned to the 19th century Western ideal of the machine. He did not want a Marxist industrial substitute for the capitalist one. Hence Fairburn’s answer amidst a decaying civilization was the vital individual: not the alienated “individual” thrown up by capitalism, but the individual as part of the family and the soil, possessing an organic rootedness above the artificiality of both Marxism and capitalism. Culture was part of this sense of identity as a manifestation of the spiritual.[20]

Not surprisingly, Fairburn was increasingly distanced from his communist friends. He was repelled by communist art based on the masses and on the fetish for science, which he called “false.” He writes: “Communism kills the Self—cuts out religion and art, that is today. But religion and art ARE the only realities.”[21]

Fairburn also repudiated a universal ideal, for man lived in the particular. New Zealand had to discover its own identity rather than copying foreign ideas. Another communist friend, the photographer Clifton Firth, wrote that the “New Zealand penis was yet to be erect.” To this Fairburn replied: “True, but as a born New Zealander, why don’t you try to hoist it up, instead of tossing off Russia? Why steal Slav gods? Why not get some mud out of a creek and make your own?”[22]

The artist and poet William Blake appealed to Fairburn’s spiritual, anti-materialist sentiments, as a means of bringing English culture out of decadence, Blake being for Fairburn “the rock on which English culture will be built in the future, when Christianity dies of an inward rot,”[23] Blake’s metaphysic holding forth against the tide of industrialization and materialism.[24] Fairburn also saw in D. H. Lawrence “a better rallying point than Lenin.”[25] He was similarly impressed with Yeats.[26] In 1931 he wrote to Guy Mountain that “Lawrence is the big man of the century as far as we are concerned.” To Clifton Firth he wrote of a lineage of prophets against the materialist age: William Blake, Nietzsche, and Lawrence.[27]

To Mason, he wrote: “our real life is PURELY spiritual. Man is not a machine.[28]

While social reform was required, it was the inner being that resisted the onrush of materialism, and Blake “was a great old boy” for what he had offered to those who fought against the material: “Social reform by all means: but the structures of the imagination are the only ones which, fortified by the spirit, can resist all the assaults of a kaleidoscopic world of matter.”[29]

In 1932 Fairburn wrote an article for the New English Weekly attacking materialism. He feared that the prosperity that would be generated by Social Credit monetary reform would cause rampant materialism devoid of a spiritual basis. He saw the aim of monetary reform as being not simply one of increasing the amount of material possessions, but as a means of achieving a higher level of culture.

Fairburn wished for a post-industrial, craft and agricultural society. The policy of Social Credit would achieve greater production and increase leisure hours. This would create the climate in which culture could flourish. Because culture requires sufficient leisure time beyond the daily economic grind, not simply for more production and consumption, as the declining cultural level of our own day shows, despite the increasing quantity of consumer goods available. It was the problem that Fairburn had seen admirably but impractically addressed by Oscar Wilde, but the practical solution of which could now be sought in Social Credit, which moreover did not aim to abolish private property but to ensure its wider distribution as a means of freedom rather than servitude.

In June 1932  Fairburn wrote to Mason that if the Labour Party rejected Social Credit economics,[30] he would on returning to New Zealand start his own movement:

 If I were in NZ I should try to induce Holland[31] and the Labour Party to adopt the Social Credit scheme. Then, if they turned it down, I should start a racket among the young men off my own bat. A Nationalist, anti-Communist movement, with strong curbs on the rich; anti-big-business: with the ultimate object of cutting NZ away from the Empire and making her self-supporting. That party will come in England hence, later in NZ. I should try and anticipate it a little, and prepare the ground. Objects: to cut out international trade as far as possible (hence, cut out war); to get out of the clutches of the League of Nations; to assert NZ’s Nationalism, and make her as far as possible a conscious and self-contained nation on her own account. I should try, for the time being, to give the thing a strong military flavor. No pacifism, “idealism,” passive resistance, or other such useless sentimentalities. Then, when the time came, a Fascist coup might be possible.

But Social Credit and Nationalism would be the main planks and the basis of the whole movement. Very reactionary, you will say. But I am quite realistic now about these things. No League of Nations, Brotherhood of Man stuff. “Man is neither a beast nor an angel”: but try to make him into an angel, and you will turn him into a beast, idealism is done with—over—passé—gone phut.

Behind the labels, of course, all this would be a cunning attempt to get what we are actually all after: decent living conditions, minimum of economic tyranny, goods for all, and the least possible risk of war. Our Masters, the Bankers, would find it harder to oppose such a movement than to oppose communism. And it would be more likely to obtain support.[32]

Murray in commenting on this stated of Social Credit that it drew from both the Left and the Right, T. S. Eliot and Ezra Pound being Social Credit adherents from the Right, while New Zealand author Robin Hyde, a Leftist, also embraced Social Credit. As for Fairburn, Murray describes him as “probably one of the most notable campaigners for Douglas’s ideas in New Zealand [who had] flirted with at least the theories of fascism early in the decade.”[33]

On his return to New Zealand Fairburn, instead of launching his own movement, wholeheartedly campaigned for Social Credit, mainly through his position as assistant secretary of the Auckland Farmers’ Union, which had a social credit policy, and as editor of its paper Farming First, a post he held until being drafted into the army in 1943. As Trussell says of New Zealand during the early 1930s, “Everywhere now Douglas Credit was in its heyday,” and in 1932 the Social Credit association was formed, followed that year by the adoption of Social Credit policy by the Auckland Farmers’ Union. “Rex Quickly slipped into the routine of a campaigner,” speaking at Social Credit meetings, and engaging in public debates.[34]

As Trussell accurately observes, although the Social Credit association did not field candidates,[35] the victorious Labour Party incorporated some of Social Credit’s “more useful concepts.”[36]

National Culture, Organic Society

Around the closing years of the war, Fairburn began to paint in earnest and made some money as a fabric designer, necessitated by the need to provide for a wife and four children.

He spurned abstract art, and particularly Picasso, as falsifying life. Abstraction, like rationalism, was a form of intellectualism that took life apart. Fairburn believed in the total individual. In art this meant synthesis, building up images, not breaking them down: “If art does anything it synthesizes, not analyses, or it is dead art. Creative imagination is the thing, all faculties of man working together towards a synthesis of personal experience resulting in fresh creation.”[37]

While Fairburn believed in innovation in the arts and had earlier adhered to the Vorticist movement founded in England by Ezra Pound, Wyndham Lewis, et al., he also believed that art should maintain its traditional foundations, which was a feature of Vorticism: its classicism was quite unique among the new forms of art arising at the time Art is a product of an organic community, not simply the egotistical product of the artist.

Fairburn, however, saw many artists as not only separate from the community but also as destructive, calling Picasso for instance, “a bearer of still-born children,” and referred to the “falseness of abstract art” and its “nihilism.”[38] By way of example, Fairburn pointed to the contemporary French and Italian artists, writing of the “French Exhibition” that few of those who either scoff or praise see the art for what it is: “the great monument to industrialist and materialist civilisation.”

It is the finest expression of that civilisation that has emerged yet. But as I happen not to be a materialist, I can’t accept any of the modern French painters as of any permanent importance. I’m all for Turner and the English landscape school, and for the Dutch. The Italians and the French can go and stuff themselves for all I care![39]

Fourteen years later Fairburn elaborated in a  radio talk:

Art is not the private property of artists. It belongs to the living tradition of society as a whole. And it can’t exist without its public. Conversely, I think it can be said that no society can live for long in a state of civilization without a fairly widespread appreciation of the arts, that is to say, without well-organized aesthetic sensibility.[40]

Hence there was a reciprocal interaction between the artist and the public. Both possessed a shared sense of values and origins, in former times, whether peasant or noble, in comparison to the formlessness of the present day cosmopolitanism. “The artist has brought contempt upon himself by letting himself be used for ends that he knows to be destructive. By doing so he has brought art and his own type close to extinction.”[41]

“Form” in art, geometrically, is fundamental. It is the primary responsibility of art schools to teach “traditional techniques” then allow those who have genuine talent to flow from there.[42]

Fairburn lectured in art history at the Elam School, Auckland University, the most influential of New Zealand’s art schools which produced Colin McCahon et al. McCahon, New Zealand’s most esteemed artist whose splatters fetch millions on the market and whose influence upon new generations of artists endures, was vehemently opposed by Fairburn, who considered his works devoid of form, “contrived,” and “pretentious humbug, masquerading as homespun simplicity.” “In design, in colour, in quality of line, in every normal attribute of good painting, they are completely lacking.”[43]

He also considered modern music sensationalist, without content, form, or order, reflecting the chaos of the current cycle of Western civilization.[44]

Fairburn, in accordance with his nationalism, advocated a New Zealand national culture arising from the New Zealand landscape. He believed that one’s connection with one’s place of birth is of a permanent quality, not just a question of which place in the world one find’s most pleasant as a place to live.

Conversely to this rootedness of Being, Fairburn had early come to regard Jews as a rootless people who consequently serve as agents for the disruption of traditional society,[45] juxtaposing old England with that of the new in his 1932 poem “Landscape with Figures,” where:

In mortgaged precincts epicene Sir Giles,
cold remnant of a fiery race, consorts
with pale fox-hunting Jews with glossy smiles,
and plays at Walton Heath, and drives a sports[46]

Writing to Mason in June 1932, Fairburn had stated that the criterion of “fortune-hunting” in choosing where one lives cannot satisfy “anybody who is un-Semitic like myself.”[47]  Fairburn explained to Mason that the art which is manufactured for the market by those who have no attachment to any specific place, is Jewish in nature:

The Jews are a non-territorial race, so their genius is turned to dust and ashes. Their works of art have no integrity—have had none since they left Palestine. Compare Mendelsohn and Humbert Wolfe with the Old Testament writers. When I came to England, I acted the Jew. I have no roots in this soil. In the end every man goes back where he belongs, if he is honest. . . . Men are not free. They are bound to fate by certain things, and lose their souls in escaping—if it is a permanent escape. . . . Cosmopolitanism—Semitism—are false, have no bottom to them. Internationalism is their child—and an abortion.[48]

Fairburn condemned the notion that a culture can be chosen and attached to “like a leech” without regard to one’s origins. He further identifies the impact of Jewish influence on Western culture: a contrived art that does not arise spontaneously from the unconscious mind of the artist in touch with his origins.

 Jewish standards have infected most Western art. It is possible to look on even the “self-conscious art” of Poe, Baudelaire, Mallarmé, Pater—Coleridge even—as being “Jewish” in the sense I am meaning. The orgasm is self-induced, rather than spontaneous. It has no inevitability. The effect is calculated. The ratio between the individual artist and his readers is nicely worked out prior to creation. It does not arise as an inevitable result of the artist’s mental processes. William Blake, who was not Jewish, had perfect faith in his own intuitions—so his work could not fail to have universal truth—to have integrity. But the truth was not calculated . . . [49]

This cosmopolitan influence expressed an “international” or “world standard” for the arts which debased culture. He wrote: “Is poetry shortly to be graded like export mutton?”[50]

The “racket of modern art” was related to economic motives:

. . . the infection of the market place . . .  the sooty hand of commerce. The “modern art racket” has the aim of “rapid turnover, a rate of change that induces a sort of vertigo, and the exploitation of novelty as a fetish—the encouragement of the exotic and the unusual.

Fairburn’s biographer Denys Trussell comments: “Rex feared that internationalism in cultural matters would reduce all depiction of human experience to a characterless gruel, relating to no real time or place because it attempted to relate to all times and places.[51] In contrast, great art arises from the traditional masculine values of a culture: “honor, chivalry, and disinterested justice.”

Writing to the NZ Listener, Fairburn decried the development of a “one world” cosmopolitan state, which would also mean a standardized world culture that would be reduced to an international commodity:

The aspiration towards “one world” may have something to be said for it in a political sense (even here, with massive qualifications), but in the wider field of human affairs it is likely to prove ruinous. In every country today we see either a drive (as in Russia and the USA) or a drift (as in the British Commonwealth) towards the establishment of mass culture, and the imposition of herd standards. This applies not only in industry, but also in the literature and the arts generally. In the ant-hill community towards which we are moving, art and literature will be sponsored by the State, and produced by a highly specialized race of neuters. We have already gone some distance along this road. Literature tends more and more to be regarded as an internationally standardized commodity, like soap or benzine—something that has no particular social or geographical context. In the fully established international suburbia of the future it will be delivered by the grocer—or, more splendidly, be handled by a world-wide chain store Literary Trust . . . [52]

The situation today has proved Fairburn correct, with the transnational corporations defining culture in terms of international marketing, breaking down national cultures in favor of a global consumer standard. This mass global consumer culture is most readily definable with the term “American.”[53]

Fairburn opposed State patronage of the arts, however, believing that this cut the artist off from the cycle of life, of family and work, making art contrived and forced instead. He also opposed the prostitution of the nation and culture to tourism, more than ever the great economic panacea for New Zealand,along with world trade. In a letter to the NZ Herald he laments the manner by which the Minister of Tourism wished to promote Maori culture as a tourist sales pitch to foreigners:

May I suggest that there is no surer way in the long run to destroy Maori culture than to take the more colorful aspects of it and turn them into a “tourist attraction.” If the elements of Maori culture are genuine and have any place outside of a museum, they will be kept alive by the Maori people themselves for their own cultural (not commercial) needs. The use of Maori songs and dances to tickle the pockets of passing strangers, and the encouragement of this sort of cheapjackery by the pakeha are degrading to both races. . . . And the official encouragement of Maori songs, dances, and crafts as side-shows to amuse tourists is both vulgar and harmful. [54]

This situation has since become endemic in New Zealand, but where once in Fairburn’s time there was the spectacle of the plastic Maori tiki made in Japan and sold in tourism shops, Maori culture has now been imposed as the “New Zealand culture” per se, as a selling point not just for tourism, but for world trade. Conversely, opening New Zealand up to the word economically has a concomitant opening up to cosmopolitanism, which usually means what is defined as “American,” and the younger generations of Maori, uprooted from the rural life of Fairburn’s time, have succumbed to alien pseudo-culture as conveyed by Hollywood and MTV. It is part of the “one world,” “internationalized commodity standard” Fairburn saw unfolding.

In discussing the question as to whether there is any such thing as “standard English” Fairburn nonetheless alluded to his opposition to cultural standardization, including that between those of the same nationality, in favor of “personalism” and “regionalism,” distinguished from “individualism,” which in our own time we have seen in the form of a pervasive selfishness raised up as social, political and economic doctrines. Fairburn wrote:

There is, first of all, the question whether it is a desirable thing for all English-speaking people to conform to a common standard in their style of speech. My own instinct leads me to resist standardisation of human behaviour in all possible contexts. I believe in ‘personalism’ (which is not quite the same thing as individualism), in regionalism, and in organic growth rather than mechanical order. With Kipling, I ‘thank God for the diversity of His creatures’.[55]

A “mechanical order” pushing cultural standardization across the world is the present phase of capitalism, now called “globalization,” of which Fairburn was warning immediately after World War II.

The Dominion of Usury

In 1935 Fairburn completed Dominion, his epic poem about New Zealand.[56] Much of it is an attack upon greed and usury, and is reminiscent of Ezra Pound’s Canto XLV: “With Usura.”[57]

The assumption to Government of the Labour Party gave Fairburn  little cause for optimism. Trussell writes that Fairburn’s view was that the Labour Government might introduce “a new dimension in social welfare, but apart from that he felt it to be conformist.”[58]

Dominion begins by  identifying the usurer as the lord of all:

The house or the governors, guarded by eunuchs,
and over the arch of the gate
these words enraged:
He who impugns the usurers Imperils
the State.[59]

Those who serve the governors are picked from the enslaved, well paid for their services to “keep the records of decay” with “cold hands . . . computing our ruin on scented cuffs.” For the rest of the people there is the “treadmill . . . of the grindstone god, and people look in desperation to the “shadow of a red mass” of communism”’[60] Like Pound in “With Usura,[61] Fairburn saw the parasitic factor of usury as the corruptor of creativity and work, where labor becomes a necessary burden rather than a craft with a wider social function than that of profit.

For the enslaved, the treadmill;
the office and adoration
of the grindstone god;
the apotheosis of the means,
the defiling of the end;
the debasement of the host
of the living; the celebration
of the black mass that casts
the shadow of a red mass.[62]

And . . .

In this air the idea dies;
or spreads like plague; emotion runs
undamned, its limits vague,
its flush disastrous as the rolling floods,
the swollen river’s rush; or dries
to a thin trickle, lies
in flat pools where swarms of flies
clouding the stagnant brim
breed from thick water, clustered slime.[63]

The unemployed and those on relief work, as Fairburn had been when he returned to New Zealand, were “witnesses to the constriction of life” which was necessary to maintain the financial system. Nor did the countryside escape the ravages of the system. The farms are “mortgaged in bitterness . . .” to the banks. “A load of debt for the foetus” dramatizes how the debt system of usury compounds generation after generation, with each being placed further into serfdom to the banks, while the banker is lauded as an upstanding businessman, the new aristocrat of the age of decline that Spengler states emerges in the “Winter” cycle of Civilization.  The city is:

a paper city built on the rock of debt,
held fast against all winds by the paperweight of debt.
The living saddled with debt.
A load of debt for the foetus . . .
And all over the hand of the usurer,
Bland angel of darkness,
Mild and triumphant and much looked up to.[64]

Colonization had bought here the ills of the Mother Country, and debt underscored the lot:

They divided the land,
Some for their need,
And some for sinless, customary greed
. . .

Fairburn’s answer is a return to the land.

Fair earth, we have broken our idols:
and after the days of fire we shall come to you for the stones of a new temple.[65]

The destruction of the usurers’ economic system would result in the creation of a new order: the land freed of debt would yield the foundation for “a new temple” other than that of the usurer. Fairburn’s belief in the soil as a key ingredient to cultural renewal and freedom brought him also to the cause of farmers, then allied to Social Credit.

Organic Farming

In 1940 Fairburn extended his advocacy to include organic farming, and he became editor of Compost, the magazine of the New Zealand Humic Compost Club. He considered that the abuse of the land led to the destruction of civilization. The type of civilization that arises depends on its type of farming, he said. Food remains the basis of civilization, but industrial farming is spiritually barren.

The type of community Fairburn sought is based on farming, not industry that gives rise to fractured, contending economic classes. Industry reduces life to a matter of economics.

In a lecture to the Auckland Fabian Society in 1944 Fairburn stated:

It is natural for men to be in close contact with the earth; and it is natural for them to satisfy their creative instincts by using their hands and brains. Husbandry, “the mother of all crafts,” satisfies these two needs, and for that reason should be the basic activity in our social life—the one that gives color and character to all the rest.[66]

In the same lecture he spells out his ideal society:

The decentralization of the towns, the establishment of rural communities with a balanced economic life, the co-operative organization of marketing, of transport and of necessary drudgery, the controlled use of manufacturing processes . . .

In 1946 Fairburn elaborated again on his ideal of decentralization, regarding the corporation as soulless and the State as the biggest of corporations:

The best status for men is that of independence. The small farmer, the small tradesman, the individual craftsman working on his own—these have been the mainstay of every stable civilization in history. The tendency for large numbers of men to forsake, or to have taken from them, their independent status, and to become hangers-on of the state, has invariably been the prelude to decay.[67]

“The broad aspect of soil politics engaged Rex’s imagination: the consciousness that the fate of civilization and the shape of its culture depended ultimately on its style of farming,” writes Trussell.

He hankered after a community that was itself “organic” rather than broken into a meaningless series of economic functions, and as far as he could see, the community that was founded on industrialized farming was spiritually barren even though, in the sort term, it could produce huge surpluses of food.[68]

The influence of Spengler obviously remained, as did William Blake, and the aim was clearly to return through agriculture and the defeat of “Money” via Social Credit, to the “Spring” epoch of Western Civilization; an era prior to industrialization, the “City” as a Spenglerian metaphor for intellectualism and its ruler, Money, and all the other symptoms of decay analyzed by Spengler.

However utopian, Fairburn’s vision was still vaguely possible in the New Zealand of his day. Today, the vision is inconceivable considering not only the rate of debt at every level of society, but due to a steady elimination of the independent farmer in favor of the corporation. If Fairburn were alive today he might well return to his original belief that such a revitalized society could only be implemented after a period of crisis and via a dictatorship, as he had written in The New English Weekly in regard to Social Credit.

New Barbarism—America and the USSR

Fairburn feared that the victors of World War II, America and the USSR, would usher in a new age of barbarism. In 1946 he wrote in an unpublished article to the NZ Herald:

The next decade or two we shall see American economic power and American commercial culture extended over the whole of the non-Russian world. The earth will then be nicely partitioned between two barbarisms. . . . In my more gloomy moments I find it hard to form an opinion as to which is the greater enemy to Western civilization—Russian materialism, the open enemy, or American materialism with its more insidious influence. The trouble is that we are bound to stick by America when it comes to the point, however we may dislike certain aspects of American life. For somewhere under that Mae West exterior there is a heart that is sound and a conscience that is capable of accepting guilt.[69]

Experience has shown that Fairburn’s “more gloomy moments” were the most realistic, for America triumphed and stands as the ultimate barbarian threatening to engulf all cultures with its materialism, hedonism, and commercialism. The Russian military threat was largely bogus, a convenient way of herding sundry nations into the American orbit. The USSR is no more, while Imperium Americana stands supreme throughout the world, from the great cities to the dirt road towns of the Third World, where all are being remolded into the universal citizen in the manner of American tastes, habits, speech, fashions, and even humor.

Fairburn’s attitude towards “Victory in Europe” seems to have been less than enthusiastic, seeing post-war Europe as a destitute, ruined, famished heap, yet one that might arise from the ashes in the spirit of Charlemagne and Jeanne d’Arc.

. . . Ten flattened centuries are heaped with rubble,
ten thousand vultures wheel above the plain;
honour is lost and hope is like a bubble;
life is defeated, thought itself is pain.

But the bones of Charlemagne will rise and dance,
and the spark unquenched will kindle into flame.
And the voices heard by the small maid of France
will speak yet again, and give this void a Name. [70]

Biological Imperatives

Fairburn regarded feminism as another product of cultural regression. In The Woman Problem[71] he calls feminism an “insidious hysterical protest” contrary to biological and social imperatives. He saw the biological urge for children as central to women.

Fairburn also considered biological factors to be more important than the sociological and economic, therefore putting him well outside the orbit of any Left-wing doctrine, which reduces history and culture into a complex of economic motives.

Our public policies are for the most part anti-biological. Social security legislation concerns itself with the care of the aged long before it looks to the health and vitality of young mothers and their children. We spend vast sums of money on hospitals and little or nothing on gymnasia. We discourage our children from marrying at the right age, when desire is urgent, and the pelvic structure of the female has not begun to ossify; we applaud them when they spend the first ten years of their adult lives establishing a profitable cosmetic business or a legal practice devoted to the defense of safe breakers. The feminists must feel a sense of elation when they see an attractive young woman clinging to some pitiful job or other, and drifting toward spinsterhood, an emotion that would no doubt be shared by the geo-political experts of Asia, if they were on the spot.[72]

Indeed, what has feminism shown itself to be, despite its pretensions as being “progressive,” other than a means of fully integrating women into the market and into production, while abortion rates soar?

It is interesting also that Fairburn makes a passing reference to the burgeoning population of Asia in comparison to New Zealand, in relation to geopolitics, the implication being that he foresaw a danger of New Zealand succumbing to Asia, which in the past few decades has indeed been the case, and which proceeds with rapidity.

Fairburn saw Marxism, feminism, and Freudianism as denying the “organic nature” of man. Urbanization means the continuing devitalization of the male physically and ethically as he is pushed further into the demands of industrial and economic life. The “masculine will” requires reassertion in association with the decentralization of the cities and, “the forming of a closer link with agriculture and the more stable life of the countryside.”

The influence of Spengler’s philosophy can be seen in Fairburn’s criticism of urbanization as leading to the disintegration of culture: “Whether this will anticipate and prevent or follow in desperation upon the breakdown of Western society is a matter that is yet to be decided.”

Fairburn, with others, especially the poets, such as Dennis Glover, Mason, Curnow, and Potocki, represented the great blossoming of an embryonic New Zealand culture that was starting to come into its own from out of the cultural hegemony of British colonialism. It was the type of nation-forming process that was being forcefully advocated by Fairburn’s contemporary “across the ditch” in Australia, Percy Stephensen.

World War II cut short what Fairburn and others had hoped to achieve; the creation of a nativist New Zealand culture. Maori culture became, as Fairburn wrote, a tourist curiosity, and the arts became as subject to international “market forces” as any commodity. Fairburn exposed, like none other of the New Zealand cultural milieu from out of that Golden Age, the forces that were bending and shaping the arts, and his polemics were a reflection of what he saw as his calling to help create a “New Zealand civilization.”

Fairburn died of cancer in 1957. He continues to be recognized as a founder of a New Zealand national literature; albeit one that in this writer’s opinion was an abortive process that waits fallow for refertilization.


[1] Fairburn to R. A. K. Mason, December 28, 1931, cited by Denys Trussell, Fairburn (Auckland: Auckland University Press, 1984), p. 116.

[2] Fairburn to Geoffrey Potocki de Montalk, August 6, 1926, in Lauris Edmond, ed., The Letters of A. R. D. Fairburn (Auckland: Oxford Univesrity Press, 1981), p. 6.

[3] Oscar Wilde, Soul of Man Under Socialism, 1891. http://wilde.thefreelibrary.com/Soul-of-Man-under-Socialism

[4] Trussell, p. 49.

[5] Fairburn, “The Rationalist,” Collected Poems (Christchurch: Pegasus, 1966), p. 95.

[6] Trussell, p. 91. Throughout his life Fairburn maintained that homosexuality was not merely a personal preference, but an actual subversion, and referred to a “Green International,” an informal conspiracy of homosexuals who were distorting the arts to their own temperament. He came to regard the “dominance” of “pansies” in the arts as largely responsible for “the decadence of contemporary English and American writing.” Fairburn to Eric McCormick, ca. 1951 or 1952 (Trussell, Fairburn, p. 249).

[7] Trussell, pp. 105–106.

[8] Fairburn, “A New Zealander at Home. Our Two Countries,” Star, August 3, 1931, magazine section, p. 1 (Trussell, p. 91).

[9] Fairburn, “Deserted Farmyard,” Collected Poems, p. 89.

[10] Trussell, p. 109.

[11] Trussell, p. 114.

[12] Trussell, pp. 109–110.

[13] Oswald Spengler, The Decline of the West, 2 vols. (London: Allen and Unwin, 1971), Vol. II, p. 506.

[14] Fairburn, New English Weekly, July 14, 1932, p. 314.

[15] Trussell, p. 113.

[16] Eric Bentley, The Cult of the Superman (London: Robert Hale, 1947).

[17] Spengler, The Decline of The West, Vol. II, pp. 506–507.

[18] Fairburn to Mason, January 29, 1932 (Trussell, p. 116).

[19] Fairburn to Guy Mountain, July 23, 1930 (Trussell, p. 112).

[20] Trussell, p. 111.

[21] Fairburn to Clifton Firth, December 23, 1931 (The Letters of A. R. D. Fairburn, p. 60).

[22] Fairburn to Clifton Firth (The Letters of A. R. D. Fairburn, p. 60).

[23] Fairburn to Clifton Firth (The Letters of A. R. D. Fairburn, p. 60).

[24] Trussell, p. 113.

[25] Trussell, p. 113.

[26] Trussell, p. 114.

[27] Stuart Murray, Never a Soul at Home: New Zealand Literary Nationalism in the 1930’s (Wellington: Victoria University Press, 1998), p. 117.

[28] Fairburn to Mason, December 28, 1931 (Trussell, p. 116).

[29] Fairburn to Mason, August 1931 (Murray, Never a Soul at Home, p. 120).

[30] The Labour Party, mainly through the persistence of the popular John A, Lee, a one-armed ex-serviceman, was campaigning for election on a platform of nationalizing the Reserve Bank and issuing “state credit.” Although this was not the same as Douglas’ Social Credit, the Douglas tour of New Zealand had provided an influential impetus for financial reform. Again at Lee’s insistence, the Labour Government did issue 1% state credit to finance the iconic sate housing project, which reduced unemployment by 75%, but the Government was too hide-bound by orthodox finance, and Lee split from Labour amidst much bitterness. See: Erik Olssen, John A. Lee (Dunedin: Otago University Press, 1977). Also: Cedric Firth, State Housing in New Zealand (Wellington: Ministry of Works, 1949) “Reserve Bank Credit,” p. 7.

[31] Harry Holland, Labour Party leader.

[32] Fairburn to Mason, June 16, 1932 (The Letters of A. R. D. Fairburn, p.  77).

[33] Stuart Murray, Never a Soul at Home, pp. 36–37.

[34] Trussell, pp. 132–33.

[35] Orthodox “Douglas Social Crediters” do not believe in party politics, and it was therefore a contentious move when the majority of Social Crediters gradually moved into becoming a full fledged political party, now known as the “Democrats for Social Credit,” a very dim shadow of what Social Credit was in Fairburn’s time.

[36] Trussell, p. 135.

[37] Fairburn to R. A. K. Mason, December 22, 1931 (The Letters of A. R. D. Fairburn, p. 58).

[38] Fairburn to Firth, December 23, 1931 (The Letters of A. R. D. Fairburn, p. 61).

[39] Fairburn to Guy Mountain, February 4, 1932 (The Letters of A. R. D. Fairburn, p. 65).

[40] Fairburn, “The Arts are Acquired Tastes,” radio talk; New Zealand Listener, July 5, 1946, pp. 21–22.

[41] Fairburn, “Notes in the Margin,” Action, New Zealand, 1947.

[42] Fairburn, “The Auckland School of Art,” Art in New Zealand, December-January 1944–1945, pp. 21–22.

[43] Fairburn, “Art in Canterbury,” Landfall, March 1948, pp. 49–50.

[44] Fairburn, “Art in Canterbury,” Landfall, pp. 49–50.

[45] Stalin came to similar conclusions from another direction, launching a campaign in 1949 against “rootless cosmopolitanism” in Soviet culture.

[46] Fairburn, “Landscape of Figures (Memories of England, 1930),” Collected Poems (Christchurch: Pegasus Press, 1966), p. 88.

[47] Fairburn to R. A. K. Mason, June 24, 1932 (The Letters of A. R. D. Fairburn,  p. 80).

[48] Fairburn to R. A. K. Mason, June 24, 1932 (The Letters of A. R. D. Fairburn, p. 80).

[49] Fairburn to R. A. K. Mason, June 24, 1932 (The Letters of A. R. D. Fairburn, pp. 80–81).

[50] Fairburn to New Zealand Listener, September 11, 1953 (Trussell, p. 263).

[51] Trussell, p. 263.

[52] Fairburn to the Editor, New Zealand Listener, June 18, 1955 (The Letters of A. R. D. Fairburn, p. 228).

[53] See for example: G Pascal Zachary, The Global Me (New South Wales: Allen and Unwin, 2000). Zachary, a senior business correspondent, celebrates the way by which globalization is making interchangeable cogs of humanity, not bound to place or culture, to enable a more efficient utilization of talent under capitalism. The world situation seems to be precisely what Fairburn feared would develop several decades previously.

[54] Fairburn to the New Zealand Herald, February 4, 1955 (The Letters of A. R. D. Fairburn, pp. 225–26).

[55] Fairburn, The Woman Problem and Other Prose (Auckland: Blackwood and Janet Paul, 1967), “Spoken English,” p. 93.

[56] Fairburn, “Dominion,” http://www.nzepc.auckland.ac.nz/authors/fairburn/dominionfull.asp

[57] Ezra Pound, “Canto XLV, With Usura,”Ezra Pound Selected Poems 1908–1959 (London: Faber and Faber, 1975), pp. 147–48.

[58] Trussell, p. 176.

[59] Fairburn, Dominion, “Utopia”, I.

[60] Fairburn, Dominion, “Utopia”, I.


With usura, sin against nature,

is thy bread ever more of stale rags . . .

with no mountain of wheat, no strong flour . . .


Wool, comes not to the market

Sheep bringeth no grain with usura . . .

And stoppeth the spinner’s cunning . . .


[62] Fairburn, Dominion, “Utopia,” I.

[63] Fairburn, Dominion, “Utopia,” IV.

[64] Fairburn, Dominion, “Utopia,” IX.

[65] Fairburn, Dominion, “Elements,” IV.

[66] Fairburn, “The Land of Our Life,” unpublished essay, p. 5 (Trussell, p. 199).

[67] Fairburn, “A Nation of Officials,” in The Woman Problem and other Prose, p. 47.

[68] Trussell, pp. 198–99.

[69] Fairburn to NZ Herald, August 28, 1946. Trussell, p. 198.

[70] Fairburn, “Europe 1945,” Collected Poems, p. 97.

[71] Fairburn, The Woman Problem and other Prose.

[72] Fairburn, “The Woman Problem,” in The Woman Problem and other Prose.

Article printed from Counter-Currents Publishing: http://www.counter-currents.com

URL to article: http://www.counter-currents.com/2012/02/rex-fairburn-2/

vendredi, 03 février 2012

Carl Schmitt y el Federalismo


Carl Schmitt y el Federalismo

Por Luís María Bandieri*

Ex: http://www.disenso.org/

Cuando se trata de abordar la relación que el título de este trabajo propone,  entre nuestro autor y el concepto jurídico-político de federación, aparece de inmediato una dificultad. El federalismo resulta un tema episódico en su obra -un índice temático de la opera omnia schmittiana registraría escasas entradas del término. Más aún, puede sospecharse que se trata, antes que de una presencia restringida y a contraluz, de una ausencia a designio.  Entonces, además de reseñar lo que dice sobre el federalismo, cabría preguntarse, también, el por qué de lo que calla. Schmitt es un autor tan vasto y profundo que, como todos los de su categoría, habla también por sus silencios, dejando una suerte de "escritura invisible" que el investigador no puede desdeñar.

El lector de Schmitt advierte, ante todo, que cuando nuestro autor se refiere al Estado, a la "unidad política" por excelencia, no suele detallar las modalidades de su organización interna y, especialmente, de cómo se articula hacia adentro, funcional o territorialmente, el poder. Autodefinido como último representante del jus publicum europaeum, Schmitt destaca en el Estado su capacidad de lograr la paz interior, sin preguntarse demasiado por cuáles mecanismos se alcanza. Las preguntas iniciales, pues,  podrían ser: formuladas así: ¿cabe el federalismo dentro de la estatalidad clásica, propia de aquel jus publicum y tan cara a Schmitt? ¿Nuestro autor concibió otras formas políticas trascendentes a aquella estatalidad clásica? Si ese ir más allá se dio ¿hubo lugar para el federalismo?

En principio, aunque luego se verá que esta caracterización resulta insuficiente, cuando nos referimos al federalismo, según surge de la literatura jurídica corriente en nuestro país, nos  referimos a una forma particular de articulación territorial del poder. El control de un territorio por el aparato de poder del Estado.

El control de un territorio por parte del Estado puede realizarse fundamentalmente de dos maneras:

  • conun modelo de articulación territorial del poder en que las partesnacen y dependen del todo -el centro-, que posee el monopolio delcontrol.

  • conun modelo de articulación territorial del poder donde el todo -elcentro- nace y depende de las partes, entre las cuales y el centrose reparten dicho control.

El primero es un modelo unitario o centralista. El segundo es el modelo federal o más exactamente “federativo”. La Argentina, por ejempo, es un Estado federativo compuesto por estados provinciales federados. La confederación resulta un procedimiento de articulación territorial del poder donde un cierto número de Estados acepta delegar ciertas competencias a un organismo común supraestatal. Basten, por ahora, estas nociones rudimentales.

Schmitt se forma en un medio jurídico-político donde las ideas de lo federal y confederal   están vivas y presentes. Después de todo, aquéllas toman entidad en la Lotaringia y el Sacro Imperio Romano Germánico, donde se desarrollan aldeas, ciudades y comunas, cada una de ellas con objetivos y alcances propios, sin perjuicio de estar relacionadas con los conjuntos más amplios del reino o el imperio, originándose así la idea de la unidad como una "concordia armoniosa", presente en el pensamiento medieval[1]. Cuando Napoleón derriba al antiguo imperio alemán, comprende que los múltiples principados alemanes no pueden sobrevivir aislados y, para organizar la Mitteleuropa, crea, bajo su protectorado, la Confederación del Rhin (1806-1813), excluída Prusia.. A la caída de Napoleón, se establece la Confederación Germánica (1815-1866), integrada por treinta y ocho  estados soberanos donde se cuentan un Imperio (Austria) y cinco reinos (Prusia, Baviera, Wurtemberg, Sajonia y Hannover). El II Reich alemán se organiza en 1871 como un Estado federal, formado por veinticinco estados federados bajo hegemonía prusiana. El Consejo federal, o Bundesrat, estaba presidido por el rey de Prusia, que llevaba el título de emperador de Alemania y designaba al canciller del Reich. La República de Weimar de 1919, es federal, parlamentaria y democrática, si bien los Länder retenían facultades limitadas. En fin, sean cuales fueren las limitaciones y problemas que manifestaron estas confederaciones y federaciones, lo cierto es que un jurista, en la Alemania de principios del siglo XX, no podía evitar la reflexión inmediata sobre el federalismo[2].

En la vasta obra schmittiana, sólo hay dos textos donde se desarrolla su pensamiento sobre el federalismo. El primero es la "Teoría  de la Constitución", Verfassungslehre, publicada en 1928. La otra, aparecida en 1931, aunque reúne estudios publicados ya en 1929, es "El Guardián de la Constitución", Der Hütter der Verfassung.  Reseñemos lo que ambas dicen sobre nuestro tema.

El primero, "Teoría de la Constitución", es la única obra de Schmitt concebida y desarrollada mediante el formato del tratado jurídico convencional y clásico. Podría pensarse en un desafío de nuestro jurista renano a sus colegas más reconocidos de la época: escribo en igual molde que ustedes, diciendo todo lo contrario de lo que inveteradamente repiten ustedes. Schmitt, que fue, al fin de cuentas, más jurista -más Kronjurist- de la república de Weimar que del Tercer Reich, donde terminó como un outsider, construye esta obra como una empresa de demolición del Estado de derecho, esto es, del tipo de Estado que la constitución weimariana pretendía más adecuadamente reflejar. Ella, sin embargo, lo convierte, paradójicamente, en uno de los mejores y más agudos expositores de los aspectos del  Rechtstaat  en general más descuidados por los análisis habituales[3].

Hasta ese momento, y salvo la opinión de Max von Seydel, sobre la que se apoya nuestro autor, la teoría dominante contraponía la confederación de Estados -Staatenbund- (al modo de la Confederación de 1815) al Estado federal -Bundstaat- (como el II Reich de 1871). Para Schmitt, en cambio, no existen diferencias entre ambas formas.

Para él, "federación [en el sentido amplio y abarcativo señalado] es una unión permanente, basada en libre conveniencia y al servicio del fin común de la autoconservación de todos los miembros, mediante la cual se cambia el total status político de cada uno de los miembros en atención al fin común"[4]. La federación da lugar a un nuevo status jurídico-político de cada miembro. El pacto federal es un pacto interestatal de status con vocación de permanencia (toda federación es concertada para la "eternidad", esto es, para la eternidad relativa de toda forma política, mortal por definición).

Toda federación, según nuestro autor, reposa sobre tres antinomias o contradicciones:

  1. Derechode autoconservación vs. renuncia al ius belli.

  1. Derechode autodeterminación vs. Intervenciones.

  1. Existenciasimultánea, por un lado. de la federación común y, por otro, de los estados miembros.La esencia de la federación reside, pues, en un dualismo de laexistencia política. Tal coexistencia de una unidad políticageneral y de unidades políticas particulares da lugar a unequilibrio difícil.   Se presenta, ante todo,  elproblema de la soberanía: ¿serán soberanos los estados federadosy no la federación? ¿o  la federación  es la únicasoberana y los estados federados carecen de tal atributo?. Se tratade soberanía, es decir, de una decisión (soberano es el que decidesobre el estado de excepción; en este caso, el que decide sobre su propia existencia política o, invirtiendo la fórmula, acerca deque un extraño no decida sobre  su propia existenciapolítica). Si la decisión  es deferida a un tribunaljudicial, éste se tornaría inmediatamente soberano, en otraspalabras, poder político existencial. La respuesta, según nuestroautor, tampoco puede consistir (según la teoría corriente en sutiempo, y vigente entre nuestros constitucionalistas) en ladistinción entre confederación y federación: en la confederación los estados federados son soberanos y en el Estado federal  lasoberanía reside en la federación misma. Ya hemos visto su rechazode  esa distinción, que no tiene en cuenta -afirma - cómosurge una decisión soberana en caso de un conflicto en que esté enjuego la propia existencia de la forma política en cuestión. Enpuridad, dice Schmitt,  conforme aquel criterio  dominanteresulta que la confederación se disuelve siempre en caso deconflicto, y que la federación se resuelve siempre, cuando mediaconflicto, en un Estado unitario. Schmitt, citándolo a través delos escritos de Max von Seydel, se refiere a las doctrinas de JohnCalhoun, que sirvieran a la argumentación  de los confederadossudistas[5].Calhoun no  admitía que, al sancionarse en Norteamérica laconstitución federativa de 1787, los estados federados hubiesenrenunciado a  sus derechos soberanos, los State Rights,anteriores a la federación y en principio ilimitados, salvo lascompetencias  que expresamente se delegaron en la constitución.Calhoun, como Seydel hará suyo, sostiene que una suma decompetencias delegadas no transmite soberanía  al delegado, niimplica renuncia a ella por parte del delegante. Los estadosfederados conservaban, pues, un derechoa la anulación delas leyes y actos federales y, cuando estuviese comprometida suseguridad y existencia, un derechoa la secesión (loque condujo a la guerra civil de 1861-65). Derrotada esa posiciónen  el campo de batalla (a partir de allí anulación ysecesión equivalen a rebelión y sobre las cuestiones entre estadosfederados decide en último término la Corte Suprema) no queda,según Schmitt, refutado por ello el argumento calhouniano. Lo queocurre es que la Constitución como tal ha cambiado su carácter yla federación ha cesado: subsiste tan sólo una autonomíaadministrativa y legislativa de los estados federados; en otraspalabras, una seudofederación.

A continuación, nuestro autor se plantea cómo se diluyen las antinomias que afectan a la federación. La federación supone homogeneidad de todos sus miembros. Para Montesquieu, esta homogeneidad significaba que los federados fueran estados republicanos, es decir, que tuviesen homogeneidad de  organización política. La homogeneidad podría ser, también, de nacionalidad, de religión, de civilización etc. Schmitt parece privilegiar la homogenidad nacional de la población, esto es, para él, la homogeneidad de origen.

Así, la primera antinomia (derecho a la autodefensa y renuncia al ius belli) se diluye porque la homogenidad con los otros federados excluye la la hostilidad entre ellos.

La segunda antinomia (autonomía e intervención) se disuelve porque la voluntaCarl Schmitt y el Federalismo - SILACPOd de autodeterminación se plantea frente a una ingerencia extraña, pero no  resulta extraña la de la propia federación.

La tercera antinomia (dualismo existencial entre federación soberana y estados miembros soberanos) se disuelve porque la homogeneidad excluye el conflicto existencial decisivo. Como las cuestiones de la existencia política pueden presentarse en campos diversos, se da así la posibilidad de que la decisión de una clase de cuestiones tales como, por ejemplo, de la política exterior, competa a la federación y que, por el contrario, la decisión de otras, por ejemplo, mantenimiento de la seguridad y el orden público dentro de un estado federado, quede reservada al propio estado miembro. No se trata de una división de la soberanía, porque en caso de una decisión que afecte a la existencia política como tal, la tomará por entero sea la federación, sea el estado miembro[6]. Donde hay homogeneidad, el caso de conflicto decisivo entre la federación y los estados miembros debe quedar excluída. De otro modo, el pacto federal se convierte en un "seudonegocio jurídico nulo y equívoco"[7].

El traductor español de la obra, Francisco Ayala, apunta en el prólogo, respecto de esta conclusión: "se las ingenia de manera a asegurar que tanto las federaciones como los estados miembros aparezcan al mismo tiempo como unitarios y soberanos". Pero Schmitt, en verdad, está señalando como propio de toda organización federativa la tensión conflictual entre federación y federados, que puede llegar al pico de la situación excepcional y resolverse por decisión soberana de la primera o de los segundos. Las antinomias que están en la base de esa tensión conflictual pueden diluirse, para Schmitt, mientras la homogeneidad que ha llevado al foedus o pacto originario, en cuya virtud ha cambiado el status de los federados, se mantenga. En el momento  en que alguno de los federados sienta su propia existencia amenazada porque aquella homogeneidad se ha roto o no es reconocido como integrándola, entonces, o el foedus se revelará como pacto de origen de un Estado, en el fino fondo, "uno e indivisible", o será quebrado por ejercicio de los derechos de anulación y secesión. En otras palabras, en el primer caso, ante  la situación excepcional, la federación ejerce la soberanía irrenunciable y deviene, en los hechos, un Estado centralizado y, en el segundo, el acto soberano proviene del estado federado, que rompe la federación.  La Ausnahmezustand, la situación o estado de excepción, en ese caso, y cualquiera sea quien protagonice la decisión (federación o estado federado), da lugar al acto soberano y consecuente re-creación de un nuevo orden jurídico[8]. De todos modos, las circunstancias bien apuntadas por Schmitt no significarían una debilidad especial de la federación con respecto a otras formas de articulación territorial del poder. Basta observar el Estado unitario descentralizado italiano o español ("Estado de regiones" o "Estado de las autonomías"), o el caso del Reino Unido de la Gran Bretaña, para advertir la misma tensión existencial entre Estado central y comunidad particular que nuestro autor apunta como meollo antinómico y foco conflictivo de la federación, con situaciones extremas y excepcionales cual el Ulster o el País Vasco. Hasta en Francia, república "una e indivisble" por antonomasia, apunta, sobre otros, el caso inmanejable de Córcega. A tal punto que Raymond Barre, ex primer ministro francés, medio en broma medio en serio, proponía devolvérsela a Génova.

Volvamos a nuestro autor. Nos ha presentado las dificultades mayúsculas y tensiones conflictivas que, a su juicio, aparecen allí donde una federación exista.  Luego aparenta disolverlas acudiendo al recurso de la homogeneidad, especialmente la homogeneidad de origen, la homogeneidad nacional de un pueblo. Pero a continuación, nos plantea una nueva dificultad, en la que aquella homogenidad amenaza destruir la federación. Se trata de una antinomia sobreviniente, que enfrenta a democracia y federalismo.

A mayor democracia, menor esfera propia de los Estados federados. Democracia y federación descansan, ambas, en el supuesto de la homogeneidad. El pensamiento de Schmitt, como se sabe, apunta en este aspecto a separar la noción de democracia de la noción de Estado liberal-burgués. Democracia, para Schmitt, es una forma política que corresponde al principio de identidad entre gobernantes y gobernados, de los que mandan y de los que obedecen, dominadores y dominados, esto es, identidad del pueblo y de la unidad política. Ello por la sustancial igualdad que es su   fundamento y que supone, parejamente, una básica homogeneidad, en el pueblo. Por ello, en el desarrollo de la democracia dentro de una federación, la unidad nacional   homogénea del pueblo transpasará las fronteras políticas de los Estados federados y tenderá a suprimir el equilibrio de la coexistencia de federación y estados federados políticamente independientes, a favor de una unidad común.

Ello conduce a un "Estado federal sin fundamentos federales"[9], como los EE.UU. o la República de Weimar, según nuestro autor. En ellos, la constitución toma elementos de una anterior organzación federal y expresa la decisión de conservarlos, pero el concepto democrático de poder constituyente de todo el pueblo, a juicio de Schmitt, suprime el concepto de federación. Se organiza un complejo sistema de distinción de poderes y descentralización, pero falta el fundamento federativo: hay una unidad política (la unidad política de un pueblo en un Estado) y no una pluralidad de unidades políticas, que es lo que supone la federación propiamente dicha. No existe, apunta Schmitt, un pueblo bávaro, prusiano, hamburgués en la constitución de Weimar: sólo existe el pueblo alemán. Sin embargo, la contradicción entre democracia y federación, donde la consecuencia de la primera, el poder constituyente del pueblo uno y único, socava los fundamentos de la segunda, no parece haber afectado a Suiza, por ejemplo. Una respuesta más afinada nos la dará Schmitt en la segunda obra donde se encuentran referencias al federalismo: Der Hüter der Verfassung.

En ella, sostiene que el presidente es el custodio de la constitución, como poder neutro y super partes. No podría serlo un tribunal judicial o corte constitucional porque, en ese caso, se le trasladaría la decisión soberana, convirtiéndose la Corte Suprema o el Consejo Constitucional en soberanos "legisladores negativos" (la expresión es de Kelsen). Detalla los peligros concretos que acechan a la defensa de la constitución que asigna al presidente del Reich. Por un lado, la existencia de partidos dotados de Weltanschauungen   o cosmovisiones totales y encontradas (el nacionalsocialismo y el comunismo), es decir, partidos totalitarios. Cada uno de ellos trata de arrebatarle al Estado su prerrogativa propiamente política, esto es, trazar la línea divisoria entre el amigo y el enemigo. Al lado de estos partidos totalitarios, se manifiestan coaliciones parlamentarias lábiles, que acentúan tendencias pluralistas, es decir, para nuestro autos, fragmentantes de la unidad política. También contribuye a desarticular el Estado weimariano, prosigue nuestro autos, el "policratismo" de los diversos sectores de la economía pública (correo, ferrocarriles, Reichbank, etc.) que se mueven cada uno independientemente del otro y hasta chocando entre sí. Por otra parte, al haberse dado la república de Weimar una organización al mismo tiempo parlamentaria y federal, continúa nuestro autor, resurge la antinomia ya señalada en Verfassungslehre entre federalismo y democracia. Schmitt no oculta que la organización federativa   de la república de Weimar le parece desestabilizante para el Estado, y la función presidencial de guardián de la constitución. Este peligro se acentúa cuando federalismo y pluralismo político se refuerzan mutuamente, consiguiéndose, dice nuestro jurista, "un doble quebrantamiento del hermetismo y de la solidez de la unidad estatal"    En un   Estado al mismo tiempo federal y parlamentario el federalismo, según nuestro autor, puede justificarse sólo de dos maneras:

  1. Comorecurso de auténtica descentralización territorial, contra lospoderes pluralistas y policráticos enquistados en el gobierno y enla actividad económica.

  2. Como"antídoto contra los métodos peculiares del pluralismo de lospartidos" [10].Esta última es una observación de gran actualidad: la realidad deun sistema de articulación territorial del poder reside en elsistema de partidos. Con partidos nacionales de direccióncentralizada, como en el caso de nuestro país, y más aún con sistemas electorales donde tales partidos monopolizan larepresentación y la manejan a través de listas cerradas,reduciéndose así, poco a poco, la democracia a un ejercicioautorreferencial de lo que se ha llamado el englobante "partidode los políticos", la variedad de las comunidades federadas sediluye en cacicazgos locales dentro de los bloques partidarios. Otra consecuencia es la aparición defensiva de partidosparticularistas, como se ve en España, Italia, Escocia, etc., comoreacción simétrica a lo anterior. Por lo tanto, y esto explica lainaplicabilidad, en principio, de la reflexión schmittiana enVerfassungslehre al caso suizo, la antinomia más virulenta se daríaentre federación y democracia monopolizada por partidos nacionalesy centralizados.

Muchos conocedores de Schmitt sostienen que, si bien advirtió la declinación del Estado-nación como forma política, jamás pudo superar   el horizonte teórico estatalista. José Caamaño Martínez afirma, por ejemplo, ante la dúplice soberanía que otorga nuestro autor a la federación y a los miembros federados: "esta teoría   de la federación nos muestra claramente que la forma histórica del Estado nacional unitario sigue siendo un dogma del pensamiento de Schmitt"[11].

"No deja lugar -dice Francisco por su parte Ayala- a un tipo de organización de la convivencia política distinto del Estado nacional [centralizado]"[12].

Gary Ulmen, por su lado, resume así la cuestión: Schmitt consideraba sustancialmente al federalismo como una fase del pasaje entre el mundo plural y parcializado de los Estados Naciones y el mundo contemporáneo, que tiende a la unidad homogeneizante. Schmitt plantea en el federalismo algunas antinomias fundamentales: partiendo del presupuesto que una federación es un contrato de status entre unidades más o menos iguales, que adhieren a la federación con finalidad de mutua protección, gestión e integración,   conlleva una permanente tensión entre la autonomía de las unidades federadas y la intervención federal. Con el tiempo, la mayor fuerza de la federación respecto de las unidades federadas producirá una creciente centralización, mientras que la heterogeneidad de las diversas unidades (ej. los EE.UU) choca con el principio democrático del pueblo soberano, que trasciende las diferencias entre los Estados miembros y tiende a una única homogeneidad. En ese punto la contradicción se manifiesta insoluble: sin homogeneidad la federación democrática no puede funcionar, pero si la homogeneidad se logra, las diferencias resultan superadas y, de hecho, se realiza un Estado unitario. Un proceso, pues, de gradual reductio ad unum [13].

En Schmitt hay una permanente tensión entre la nostalgia del jus publicum europaeum, derecho público interestatal,   y su percepción de la declinación de la forma estatal. Es muy claro respecto a esto último cuando prologa la reedición de "El Concepto de lo Político":

"Hasta los últimos años la parte europea de la Humanidad vivió una época cuyas nociones jurídicas eran acuñadas desde el punto de vista estatal. Se supuso al Estado modelo de la unidad política. La época del estatismo está terminando ahora. No vale la pena discutirlo. Con ello se termina toda la infraestructura de construcciones relacionadas con el Estado, que una ciencia europeo-céntrica del derecho internacional y del derecho político había erigido en cuatrocientos años de trabajo espiritual. Se destrona al Estado como modelo de la unidad política, al Estado como portador del monopolio de la decisión política. Se destrona a esta obra maestra de la concepción europea y del racionalismo occidental. Pero se mantienen sus nociones e incluso se mantienen como ideas clásicas, aunque hoy día la palabra clásico suena casi siempre equívoca y ambivalente, por no decir irónica"[14].    Se advierte, junto a la claridad de la toma de posición, el tono elegíaco respecto de la época que se cierra y   un   pronóstico ominoso respecto de la que se abre. Hay una cierta renuencia a pensar más allá de la forma estatal. Nuestro autor es claro, preciso y de seguimiento ineludible en cuanto a la pars destruens respecto de lo que asoma tras la retirada de la estatalidad y el jus publicum europaeum, donde aquélla se expresaba. Recoge la frase de Proudhon, "quien dice Humanidad quiere engañar" y alerta sobre la intensificación de la enemistad hacia posiciones absolutas que encubre el interventismo humanitarista.   Pero, a la vez, desde la pars construens, no alcanza a concebir una pluralidad superadora de la estatalidad moderna, un orden jurídico postestatal, tanto hacia adentro del Estado y la articulación terriotorial del poder, como hacia fuera de los Estados, que suceda sin traicionar en lo esencial y valioso aquel jus publicum moribundo. Para Schmitt, la unidad política estatal fue el unum necessarium; ahora, marchamos hacia una unidad política de alcance planetario, que no podría cumplir con lo que el Estado consiguió ad intra: la paz interior, la deposición de la enemistad intestina; en otras palabras, se perdería, a escala global, el vivere civile, la dimensión civilizatoria de la política. Pero a Schmitt no le interesó jamás cómo se articulaba hacia adentro, funcional y territorialmente, aquella paz interior. Lo seduce la unitas, pero no lo atrae   la universitas donde se articulan diversidades y diferencias. Así, deja a un lado la corriente de pensamiento medieval, con culminación en Dante, luego reaparecida con Altusio, que resulta basilar para la noción federativa. Los jurisconsultos del medioevo hablaban de una bóveda de universitates locales ordenadas desde el domus, el vicus, la civitas, la provincia, el regnum, el imperium. Es probable que nuestro autor viese en esta corriente una manifestación del romanticismo político que solía fulminar. Así, por ejemplo, en las fórmulas de Adam Müller acerca de una   concepción "orgánica" y estamental del Estado como una comunidad superior de comunidades, transmitidas por la obra de Gierke y recogidas por un contemporáneo de Schmitt, Othmar Spann. Schmitt polemizó en varias   ocasiones   con las teorías organicistas que asimilaban el Estado a las otras comunidades, tanto las menos como las más amplias, afectando así la summa potestas del soberano[15]. En "El Concepto de lo Político" (1927) hace referencia expresa a Gierke, cuya teología política, según nuestro autor, en la búsqueda de una unidad última, de un "cosmos' y de un "sistema" resulta "superstición y reminiscencia de la escolástica medieval"[16].   En "El Leviatán en la Teoría del Estado de Tomás Hobbes" (1938) señala que los mecanismos estamentales, generadores de un derecho de resistencia, conducen a la guerra civil, cuando la misión del Estado es ponerle un cierre definitivo[17]. Pero su ataque se concentró, especialmente, sobre las concepciones pluralistas de Harold Laski y G.D.H. Cole, que, entre 1914 y 1925, habían propiciado, desde posiciones cercanas al socialismo inglés y los fabianos, la descentralización y repartición del poder estatal. Aunque las notas polémico de Schmitt son de 1927[18], cuando Laski ya había abandonado el pluralismo o policratismo, le servían a nuestro autor para reafirmar su pensamiento nuclear de rechazo de toda forma de contestación o recorte de la superioridad ad intra del Estado.

Nuestro autor, como se sabe, desde los años 40 comienza a hablar de los imperios y de los grandes espacios, los Grosseraume, como las formas políticas surgentes tras la estatalidad. El mundo quedaría parcelado en una pluralidad de grandes espacios, pero como pluralidad de unidades estancas. Habría, en otras palabras, un nuevo jus publicum con menos protagonistas que el antiguo: "un equilibrio de varios grandes espacios que creen entre sí un nuevo derecho de gentes en un nuevo nivel y con dimensiones nuevas, pero, a la vez, dotado de ciertas analogías con el derecho de gentes europeo de los siglos dieciocho y diecinueve, que también se basaba en un equilibrio.de potencias, gracias al cual se conservaba su estructura"[19]. Nada nos dice de cómo se organizarían ad intra los grandes espacios: súlo sabemos que deberían mantener alguna homogeneidad interna y que algún Estado ejercería en ellos un papel hegemónico (el ejemplo es el papel de los EE.UU respecto al resto de América, luego de que la doctrina Monroe estableciera límites y exclusiones configuradoras de este gran espacio).

Los Grosseraume se plantean como alternativa al gran peligro, a la remoción del katéjon (es decir, lo que retiene, ataja   u obstaculiza, concepto recurrente en la teología política final de nuestro autor). El katéjon actúa en toda época y es, por lo tanto, variable con el decurso de aquéllas. El katéjon asienta o mantiene el Nomos epocal y desaparece con él[20]. Se lo menciona en Pablo de Tarso (II epístola a los tesalonienses, 2, 6/7), que lo considera el obstáculo o retardo, qui tenet nunc,   el que retiene   ahora la manifestación del Anticristo.   El Anticristo de Schmitt es la soberanía global, el mundo uno y uniforme correspondiente al pensamiento técnico-industrial. El sistema de Estados nacionales en pugna controlada, construcción de la racionalidad europea, edificadores al mismo tiempo, cada uno, de su propia paz interior, he allí el verdadero katéjon para Schmitt. Ninguna virtualidad le ve en ese sentido a la provisoria federación, contrato temporario de status, fuente de desestabilizaciones, que prefiere mostrar a contraluz o no mostrar, como dijimos al principio de este trabajo. Aunque, a pesar de su desconfianza hacia las formas federativas, dejó sobre ellas notables observaciones jurídico-políticas, como hemos visto. Quizás, alguien ha señalado, se consideraba el mismo Schmitt como el katéjon intelectual al  diseño maligno de la soberanía global desde la unidad política del mundo. De todos modos, advierte que un Nomos de la tierra desaparece y no ha apuntado el otro todavía. No alcanza a divisar si es posible un nuevo Nomos pluralístico donde la conflictualidad se canalice y yugule, sin proclamar su desaparición, como sueña la soberanía global mientras desarrolla sin pausa sus operaciones de policía humanitaria.

Schmitt advertía una sustancial oposición entre estatalidad y federalismo. Por eso decía que el Estado federal, seudonegocio jurídico nulo y equívoco se resuelve, como el federalismo hamiltoniano, en la forma de Estado unitario más o menos matizado. Hoy reaparece el federalismo de raíz lotaringio germánica, cuyo teórico más reciente fuera Proudhon, como visión comprensiva del mundo y de la sociedad, no como simple forma de Estado (su fórmula   podría ser, en lugar de   e pluribus, unum, del federalismo norteamericano, la de   ex uno, plures[21]). El katéjon schmittiano está removido. Una soberanía global es posible. Hasta hace poco, se pensaba que esa soberanía residía impersonal y ubicuamente en los mecanismos,   soportes y programas autosuficientes de las redes tecnológicas, de comunicación, informáticas y financieras que rodean el planeta[22]. Al no haber un Leviatán visible, se lo suponía muerto o dormido. Después del 11 de septiembre de 2001, Leviatán debe manifestarse otra vez, ahora para asegurar el globo ante la amenaza del terrorismo global y "privatizado".    En esa bufera o borrasca dantesca nos toca movernos, y las reflexiones schmittianas permiten allí algunos vislumbres. Decía Hölderlin que en el peligro crece también lo que salva. Y nuestro autor agregaba que, al borde del abismo, en la situación excepcional, "la mente se abre al arcano".

* Doctor en Ciencias Jurídicas, Universidad Católica Argentina.


[1]) Ver Otto von Gierke, "Teorías Políticas de la Edad Media",con introducción de F.W. Maitland, traducciónindirecta del ingléspor Julio Irazusta, Editorial Huemul, Bs. As., 1963, p. 108/109.

[2] )Tras la Segunda Guerra Mundial, la República Federal Alemana seconfiguró en 1949, como su nombre lo indica, bajo un sistemafederativo. La República Democrática Alemana, en cambio, como"Estado socialista de la nación alemana", se configuróbajo un sistema unitario. Anteriormente, bajo el III Reich, la Leyde Plenos Poderes del 24 de marzo de 1933, que en los hechos derogóla Constitución de Weimar, otorgó la potestad legislativa laGobierno del Reich, es decir, al Fuehrer., que designaba algobernador (Gauleiter) en cada uno de los distritos. La organizacióndel Reich fue asimilándose (Gleichschaltung) a la organizacióncentralizada y uniforme del Partido Nacional Socialista ObreroAlemán. Alemania, hoy, es un Estado federal.

[3] )Ver Carl Schmitt, "La Defensa de la Constitución", trad.de Manuel Sénchez Sarto, prólogo de Pedro de Vega, ed. Tecnos,Madrid, 1998, 2ª. Edición, p. 12

[4] )Carl Schmitt, "Teoría de la Constitución", traducción ypresentación de Francisco Aala, epílogo de Manuel García-Pelayo,Alianza editorial, Madrid, 1982, p. 348.

[5] )Schmitt solía adherir a la causa de los vencidos: victrix causadiis placuit, sed victa Catoni,la causa de los vencedores place alos dioses, pero la de los vencidos a Catón..y a Schmitt.

[6] )Contra James Madison en "El Federalista", XXXIX, XLIV yXLV: se propone una soberanía distributiva, donde los estadosfederados retienen una porción no delegada, un residuo inviolable,y la federación ejerce sólo la delegada. Ello es posible porque elpueblo, organizado en ciudadanía, no en masa, manifiesta suvoluntad soberana parcialmente en varias represdentaciones: comoindividuo, como miembro del estado federado, como miembro de lafederación. Ver Hamilton, Madison y Jay, "El Federalista",prólogo y traducción de Gustavo R. Velasco, FCE, Mexico,6ª.reimpresión, 1998. Para Schmitt, este deslinde, esta especie definium regundorum entre federación y estados miembros de la mismasoberanía, no resulta concebible. En la situación excepcional,quien decida, federación o estado miembro, resulta plenamentesoberano.

[7] )Op. cit. n. iv, p. 359

[8] )Sobre las dificultades de traducción de Ausnahmezustand como"estado" o "situación" excepcional puede versela nota del traductor, Jean-Louis Schlegel en "ThéologiePolitique, 1922,1969", Gallimard, 1988, p. 15. Para otrosdesarrollos sobre el concepto de soberano en Schmitt me remito a miprólogo a "Teología Política", Ed. Struhart y Cía.,2ª. Ed., Bs. As. 1998.

[9] )Op. cit nota iv, p. 369.

[10] )Op. cit. n. iii, p. 161.

[11] )José Caamaño Martínez: "El Pensamiento Juídico-Político deCarl Schmitt", prólogo de Luis Legaz y Lacambra, Ed. Porto yCía, Santiago de Compostela, 1950, p. 159.

[12] )Op. cit. n iv, p. 17

[13] )  Gary L. Ulmen en Paul Piccone y otros, "La RivoluzioneFederalista", Settimo Sigillo, Roma, 1995.

[14] )Carl Schmitt, "La Noción de lo Político", en Revista deEstudios Políticos, Instituto de Estudios Políticos, nº 132, Madrid, noviembre-diciembre 1963, p.6

[15] )Una de ellas fue en una conferencia de 1930 en honor de Hugo Preuss,discípulo de Gierke. Ver George Schwab, "Carl Schmitt, lasfida dell'eccezione", introducción de FrancoFerrarotti, traducción de Nicola Porto, Laterza, Bari, 1986, p.92

[16] )Carl Schmitt, "El Concepto de lo Político", trad. deFrancisco Javier Conde, en "Estudios Políticos", Doncel,Madrid, 1975, p. 118.

[17] ) Carl Schmitt, "El Leviatán en la Teoría del Estado de TomásHobbes", traducción de Francisco Javier Conde, Ediciones Haz,Madrid,1941 p. 72/73.

[18] )Op. cit. nota anteror, loc. cit. Un eco de este ataque al pluralismo"extremista" del "judío Laski" aparece en "ElConcepto de Imperio en el Derecho Internacional" (1940), trad.de Francisco Javier Conde, Revista de Estudios Políticos, Madrid,1941, p. 97.

[19] )Carl Schmitt, "La Unidad del Mundo", Ateneo, Madrid, 1951,p.24

[20] )Carl Schmitt, "El Nomos de la Tierra en el Derecho de Gentesdel jus publicum europaeum", trad. Dora Schilling Thon,Estudios Internacionales, Madrid, 1979, p. 37 y sgs.

[21] )Me remito a mi trabajo "El Federalismo Argentino en elNovecientos o de cémo perdimos el siglo", IV Congreso Nacionalde Ciencia Política, UCA -SAAP, Buenos Aires, RA, noviembre 17 al20 de 1999,.

[22] )Ver Bandieri, Luis María, "¿Soberanía Global vs. SoberaníaNacional? (Hacia una Micropolítica Federativa)" Ponencia en laPrimeras Jornadas nacionales de derecho Natural, San Luis, RA, 14 al16 de junio de 2001, RA

Le malaise est vraiment dans l’homme

Le malaise est vraiment dans l’homme


On connaissait Pierre Le Vigan philosophe, urbaniste et penseur préoccupé par les questions sociales et écologiques. On le découvre aujourd’hui fin analyste de l’âme humaine. Se plaçant dans le sillage de La crise est dans l’homme, le premier ouvrage de Thierry Maulnier (1932), Le malaise est dans l’homme est un essai passionnant d’exploration des différentes psychopathologies et souffrances psychiques de l’homme moderne. Il considère que « la souffrance psychique est au carrefour du psychique et du social (p. 19) ». De là son intérêt pour ce sujet pointu.

Il examine en une vingtaine de chapitres la dépression, l’ennui, la mélancolie, la paranoïa, les « états-limites », le bovarysme – cette illusion d’être autre -, les phobies, le dandysme, etc. En historien, en philosophe et presque même en « praticien » averti, Pierre Le Vigan définit, scrute, observe les manifestations de ces troubles ou de ces surmenages. Par exemple, « l’actuelle dépression est une maladie de la responsabilité (p. 46) ». On peut regretter qu’il n’exploite pas assez la polysémie du mot qui a aussi des significations topographique et météorologique éclairantes si l’on croit à l’importance symbolique de la métaphore…

Sur la paranoïa, il remarque que c’« est une maladie très moderne. Elle n’est en effet guère pensable sans l’individualisme et la croyance en un “ moi ” autonome et donc susceptible de “ corruption ” par l’Autre, par l’Extérieur (pp. 92 – 93) ». Concernant les addictions ou « dépendances », il souligne fort justement que « c’est se passer du désir (p. 138) » au profit d’une satisfaction immédiate et éphémère. Il s’agit d’« une emprise irrésistible [qui] s’instaure (p. 139) ».

Pierre Le Vigan soumet aussi le concept d’identité à ses interrogations. Pour lui, « l’identité n’est pas l’authenticité. Celle-ci est le mythe d’une non-dualité, d’une spontanéité totale, de relations humaines qui n’obéiraient pas à des codes, à une éducation (paideia), et qui n’auraient pas d’histoire (p. 174) ». La construction de soi se révèle désormais plus ardue pendant que « s’accroît le nihilisme “ mou ” qu’est la fatigue de vivre et d’engager des choses (p. 186) ». Éreintées par un quotidien matériel trépidant, les âmes sont en déshérence. Pour cacher ce naufrage psychique, « la société valorise la repentance plutôt que l’orgueil, fut-il mal placé (p. 187) ». Dans le même temps, « l’hyper-émotivité contemporaine et l’hypersensibilité nourrissent le narcissisme qui demande lui-même en retour des réassurances hyperprotectrices (cellules de soutien psychologique, etc.) (p. 187) ».

La dévastation est si considérable – car elle s’amplifie de l’omnipotence des médias et de leurs écrans tyranniques – que la fin des souffrances psychiques paraît encore bien lointaine. Est-il possible de s’en sortir ? Pour Le Vigan, « les seules réponses de long terme ne peuvent être que le renforcement du lien social, du “ tenir-ensemble ” la société. Le mythe de la mondialisation heureuse ne fera pas longtemps illusion, c’est l’invention et l’appropriation de nouvelles pratiques sociales, solidaires, c’est le tissage de nouveaux liens qui est nécessaire. La modernité hypercapitaliste avance sur la base du couple société de masse – repli individualiste, la massification jouant le rôle du répulsif entraînant toujours plus d’individualisme et de privatisation de l’individu (habitat des plus riches en résidences sécurisées, déplacements en voiture, isolement dans sa bulle musicale avec les diffuseurs individuels de musique numérique, etc.). Il faut rechercher des contre-courants à cette privatisation des existences. Il faut réapprendre le sens de la vie, le sens de la ville, et aussi le temps et son bon usage, qui peut être la lenteur (pp. 22 – 23) ». Alors la psyché humaine retrouvera peut-être une certaine quiétude à rebours du délire actuel hyper-moderne.

Georges Feltin-Tracol

• Pierre Le Vigan, Le malaise est dans l’homme. Psychopathologie et souffrances psychiques de l’homme moderne, préface de Thibault Isabel, Avatar Éditions, coll. « Polémiques », 2011, 195 p., 22 €.

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mercredi, 01 février 2012

Recuperare l’unità della coscienza contro la deriva del soggettivismo e delle “scienze umane"


Recuperare l’unità della coscienza contro la deriva del soggettivismo e delle “scienze umane"

di Francesco Lamendola

Fonte: Arianna Editrice [scheda fonte]

Tante altre notizie su www.ariannaeditrice.it

La coscienza dell’uomo moderno si trova presa in trappola tra due forze apparentemente opposte: da un lato quella del soggettivismo, dell’individualismo e del nominalismo, che nega la possibilità di conoscere alcunché, e dunque - a maggior ragione - la coscienza, se non come semplice nome; e quella delle sedicenti “scienze umane”, e specialmente dello strutturalismo, le quali, in nome di una visione oggettivistica dei fatti interiori, ridotti a semplici prodotti di norme e divieti imposti dall’esterno, vorrebbe azzerare la coscienza individuale in quanto tale e farne un semplice prodotto di risulta.

Diciamo che si tratta di “forze” perché, penetrando nella cultura del cittadino medio e venendo continuamente enfatizzate dalla grande maggioranza degli intellettuali, specialmente filosofi e psicologi, esse sono entrate a far parte del nostro modo di pensare e di sentire e non si delineano più semplicemente come l’orizzonte culturale entro il quale pensiamo, agiamo e viviamo, ma come parte del nostro immaginario e del nostro stesso sentire, cioè come parte del nostro essere.

Presa in una simile tenaglia, la coscienza dell’uomo moderno si è notevolmente modificata rispetto a quella dell’uomo pre-moderno; e, se la prima di queste due forze ha avuto l’effetto di relativizzare al massimo i suoi legami con il mondo, la seconda ha prodotto quello di opprimerla sotto il peso di un destino ineluttabile, o all’opposto (ma sono le due facce di una stessa medaglia) di consegnarla, per reazione, al più disordinato relativismo e al più egoistico indifferentismo.

Il soggettivismo moderno incomincia con Kant e si afferma con l’idealismo di Fichte ed Hegel: inizia con la negazione della cosa in sé e della metafisica e culmina con la delirante dottrina secondo cui non è la realtà a creare il pensiero, ma il pensiero a creare la realtà. A partire da quel momento, la strada era aperta per ogni fumisteria solipsistica: le cose non sono quelle che sono perché possiedono una propria natura, ma perché attraverso di esse si manifesta l’Idea: Idea che, a dispetto della lettera maiuscola, non è affatto un dato metafisico, ma una sorta di manifestazione superomistica (ante-litteram) del pensiero medesimo.

E così via di questo passo: deducendo, l’una dall’altra, tutta una serie di conseguenze sempre più improbabili, l’idealismo se ne va dritto per la sua strada, costruendo un castello di affermazioni gratuite, che si arrampicano l’una sopra l’altra, per niente preoccupato che il primo soffio di vento possa far crollare un edificio così pericolosamente sbilanciato e del tutto privo di solide fondamenta.

Le scienze umane - le quali, già nella definizione, tradiscono la matrice positivista -, da parte loro, hanno largamente avvalorato l’idea che il comportamento dell’uomo non sia che il frutto di un condizionamento da parte della società o che sia il risultato di istinti sui quali egli ha uno scarso controllo, oppure l’una e l’altra cosa insieme: in ogni caso, quel che emerge è una realtà umana impoverita, compressa, alienata da se stessa, condannata o ad un conformismo avvilente o ad una rivolta velleitaria, in nome di una autenticità che, di fatto, non è mai esistita.

Nessuna meraviglia che, in una simile prospettiva, l’io dell’uomo moderno appaia frammentato, disgregato, dissolto: che cosa resta dell’uomo, una volta che gli siano state strappate via le varie maschere, se non il nulla?

E che cosa può giustificare da parte sua, una determinata scelta etica, se in nessun caso il soggetto sceglie liberamente, ma agisce sempre sotto la duplice, inesorabile tirannia delle istituzioni sociali e dei propri stessi, inconfessabili istinti?

Ci sembra meritevole di riflessione quanto scrive a questo proposito Giannino Piana nell’articolo «La coscienza nell’attuale contesto culturale» (in: «Credere», Edizioni Messaggero, Padova, n. 128, vol. 2 del 2002, pp. 7-10):


«La cultura moderna è contrassegnata, fin dall’inizio e in tutte le sue fasi, dalla riduzione del soggetto a individuo, alla mancanza di una visione “personalista” del soggetto, la sola in gradi di fare immediatamente spazio (interpretandola non come dato accidentale ma come fattore costitutivo) alla dimensione della relazione e sociale. Vi è chi - non a torto - tende a far risalire tale riduzione all’influsso del Nominalismo, cioè alla negazione che esso fa dell’esistenza di ogni dato oggettivo (a causa della impossibilità di pervenire all’elaborazione di concetti che abbiano una consistenza reale, che non siano meri nomi o semplici “flatus vocis”), perciò a una lettura radicalmente “singolare” della realtà e alla riconduzione dell’ordine esistente a una realtà onnipotente, cin significative ricadute tanto su piano etico che politico.

La definitiva soppressione del concetto di “natura” (e conseguentemente di diritto naturale”) coincide con la nascita del “diritto soggettivo” come unico referente della vita sociale:l’antropologia individualista non consente di fondare la società a partire dal’essenza del soggetto, ma ne impone l’accettazione unicamente come condizione per lo sviluppo delle istanze individuali; la mediazione dei diritti soggettivi, cioè la imitazione della loro area di estensione diviene pertanto la via che rende possibile a tutti l’accesso a una loro (sia pire parziale) fruizione. La visione pessimistica dell’uomo propria della Riforma accentua tale tendenza, identificando il diritto soggettivo con il luogo di concentrazione degli istinti individuali e dei desideri egocentrici. Le teorie contrattualiste - a partire da Hobbes - fanno proprio questo assunto, impegnandosi, mediante il “patto sociale”, nella costruzione di un ordine, che consenta il superamento del “bellum omnium contra omnes”, che renda in altri termini possibile l’articolarsi di una forma di convivenza ordinata e pacifica

Il presupposto individualistico trova poi ulteriore conferma (e grande consolidamento) con l’avvento dell’industrializzazione e con l‘affermarsi del sistema capitalista. L’egoismo intellettuale sembra costituire la molla da cui l’attività economica prende avvio, e la stessa scienza economica, che si sviluppa in tale contesto fa dei princìpi della proprietà privata e della massimizzazione della produttività e del profitto le leggi “naturali” che devono governare la vita economica. L’interesse generale non rientra direttamente negli obiettivi dell’economia, ma viene piuttosto concepito o come l’esito automatico del ibero mercato si pensi al teorema della “mano invisibile” che ridistribuisce quanto viene prodotto (A. Smith) - o con una variabile con cui fare i conti per ragioni puramente economiche, considerando cioè i riflessi negativi prodotti dall’eccesso di sperequazione in termini di disagio e di conflittualità sociale.

Questo insieme di fattori si riflette in una lettura radicalmente soggettivistica della coscienza: : essa, lungi dall’essere vista come fonte originaria di una identità - quella del soggetto - che prende senso e si costruisce in un tessuto di relazioni, risulta espressione di una individualità chiusa e autosufficiente; la necessità di fare i conti con istanze derivanti dalla presenza  dell’altro (e degli altri) ha infatti carattere  del tutto esteriore ed è motivata da ragioni meramente utilitariste. La coscienza non è soltanto l’ultimo criterio della verità, è il criterio unico (ed esclusivo) del suo esercizio. L’affermazione “decido secondo coscienza” rispecchia questa convinzione: il riferimento a un ordine oggettivo è ritenuto superfluo (e persino deviante), l’agire ha nell’individuo la sua sorgente e si esaurisce in esso; tutto il resto è legato esclusivamente a ragioni di convenzione sociale, ragioni che non intaccano  la soggettività delle scelte.

Questa spinta soggettivista si scontra peraltro - sta qui ilo carattere paradossale della situazione attuale - con l’opposta tendenza alla radicale oggettivazione della coscienza, provocata soprattutto dall’interpretazione (o dalle interpretazioni) che di essa ci forniscono le scienze umane. La psicologia, quella del profondo in particolare, pone l’accento sull’importanza che riveste il processo di formazione della personalità : la coscienza morale altro non è che l’introiezione del super-io sociale, l’assimilazione cioè di comandi e di divieti, che non hanno origine nell’interiorità del soggetto, ma sono il prodotto del condizionamento esercitato dal mondo esterno di cui il soggetto si appropria in nome del “principio di realtà”. A loro volta, le scienze sociali e culturali – basti qui ricordare l’antropologia d’ispirazione funzionalista - sottolineano la pesantezza degli influssi esercitati dalle strutture e dalle istituzioni della vita associata e, più in generale, dal costume dominante, cioè dagli stili di vita e dai modelli di comportamento, sulla condotta dei singoli; mentre gli stessi sviluppi elle scienze biologiche - si pensi alla fisiologia dei vari apparati e allo studio delle interazioni che tra essi si istituiscono - svelano la dipendenza dell’agire dell’uomo da dinamismi istintuali che producono forme di reazione immediata, difficilmente controllabili a livello razionale. La coscienza risulta così essere più il riflesso dell’insieme delle pressioni esercitate da un insieme di fattori - endogeni o esogeni - guidati, in ogni caso, da logiche deterministiche che una realtà dotata di consistenza originaria e autonoma, da cui prende forma il giudizio e la decisione morale. È come dire - ed è questa la posizione più radiale (e tuttavia, in tale ottica, coerente) espressa dallo strutturalismo - - che essa si riduce a eventi del tutto sovrastrutturale, a epifenomeno, la cui genesi e i cui caratteri distintivi vanno ricercati altrove; nel’influenza di un complesso intreccio di elementi, il peso di ciascuno dei quali è inoltre difficilmente valutabile. Al di là della convergenza attorno a questa visione, che svuota la coscienza della sua identità soggettiva, e pertanto la reifica, diverse sono le modalità descrittive che si danno di essa a seconda che si privilegi l’una o l’latra tecnica di approccio;  la tendenza elle scienze umane, guidate nella ricerca e nella elaborazione dei dati da inevitabili precomprensioni metascientifiche, è infatti quella di trasformarsi in ideologie totalizzanti, dando vita a un “conflitto delle interpretazioni” che ha come sbocco  la riduzione della coscienza alla realtà dell’inconscio op al riflesso condizionato dei modelli sociali  e culturali egemoni.

L’oggettivazione della coscienza comporta per ciò stesso la negazione della moralità: sottraendo all’uomo  quel principio interiore che dà senso autenticamente  umano all’agire e riducendolo alla risultante di condizionamenti indotti dalla pressione di fattori diversi (e in ogni caso decisivi), si perviene allo svuotamento  totale della soggettività umana, perciò all’ammissione dell’impossibilità  di attribuire contenuto etico alle scelte…»


Giannino Piana, dunque, dopo aver fatto una analisi a nostro avviso largamente condivisibile della situazione attuale, considera tuttavia “paradossale” la confluenza di soggettivismo e scienze umane  nell’espropriazione del senso di unità e di interiorità della coscienza che caratterizza la cultura moderna.

Ma è proprio vero che si tratta di un dato paradossale, ossia di un dato che scaturisce in maniera imprevista dall’azione reciproca delle forze in gioco? Vediamo.

Il nominalismo, che parte dalla negazione di una realtà conoscibile in se stessa, si sposa, come egli ben mette in evidenza, con l’utilitarismo sul piano etico  e con il liberalismo sul piano politico-sociale. Ora, tanto l’utilitarismo quanto il liberalismo sono ideologie dell’egoismo individuale: per esse l’individuo è tutto, la società non è altro che lo sfondo in cui egli si muove e che deve assicurargli il massimo della sicurezza e del soddisfacimento dei suoi “diritti”.

In particolare, il liberalismo è parente stretto di una ideologia politica che, a torto, si considera come radicalmente antitetica ad esso, l’anarchismo: in realtà, esse hanno in comune l’interesse esclusivo per i diritti del singolo, la diffidenza verso l’altro, il fatto di ritenere lo Stato come un male inevitabile, ma da ridurre al minimo (liberalismo) o da eliminare del tutto (anarchismo). Adam Smith e Max Stirner sono molto più simili di quanto non si creda e hanno più cose in comune di quante ve ne siano a dividerli.

Entrambe le ideologie negano un’etica che si basi sulla relazionalità dei soggetti e che rappresenti l’autentico compimento della coscienza individuale, ciò che fa dell’uomo una “persona” e non un atomo isolato o, come voleva Leibniz (ma anche Freud), una monade senza porte e senza finestre; ed entrambe tentano poi, goffamente, di reintrodurre in qualche modo, dalla finestra, ciò che avevano cacciato dalla porta: il liberalismo, tirando in ballo la stravagante teoria per cui il massimo dell’egoismo individuale produrrebbe anche, chissà come, il massimo del bene comune; l’anarchismo, sposandosi - ma solo a parole - con il suo esatto contrario, il comunismo, e dando vita al comunismo anarchico di Kropotkin e Malatesta.

In ogni caso, il nominalismo porta al soggettivismo e quest’ultimo porta all’accentuazione ipertrofica delle ragioni dell’ego, nello stesso tempo in cui tende a svalutare la presenza dell’altro o, addirittura, a vederla come un impedimento e un ostacolo: c’è un filo rosso che lega, con assoluta coerenza, l’affermazione di Freud, secondo cui il comandamento di amare il prossimo come se stessi è assurdo, perché irrealizzabile, e quella di Sartre, che vede negli altri la manifestazione del nostro particolare inferno.

Le scienze umane, poi, per il modo stesso in cui sono sorte e si sono affermate e per il contesto culturale che le ha prodotte, dominato dall’ideologia del Positivismo, hanno esasperato la componente esterna nella formazione della coscienza, fino a suggerire che, senza tale azione proveniente dalla società, gli uomini sarebbero più o meno privi di una coscienza originaria e, con essa, di un senso profondo ed autentico del bene e del male, riducendoli a oggetti passivi ed inermi davanti a delle forze molto più grandi di loro.

Preso fra un inconscio oscuro e minaccioso, che lo domina con i suoi impulsi tanto più potenti, quanto più ci si sforza di reprimerli, ed una pressione sociale continua, sistematica, soffocante, l’uomo finisce per ridursi alla condizione di un grottesco burattino, agitato da ogni vento e sbattuto di qua e di là, senza una volontà propria, senza una capacità di distinguere, e tanto meno di scegliere, fra il bene e il male: per cui egli agisce come capita, «non si sa come» (parafrasando Pirandello), in maniera bizzarra, capricciosa, imprevedibile.

Ed è logico che così avvenga: se la coscienza non esiste come dato originario, o se essa è per noi inattingibile, e - dunque - si riduce a una mera ipotesi indimostrabile, allora non bisogna aspettarsi alcuna coerenza, alcuna progettualità, alcuna logica nelle azioni umane: esse avvengono a capriccio, incomprensibilmente, sul filo dell’istinto o della nevrosi cui il conflitto permanente e insolubile tra Es e Super-Io ci tiene costantemente impegnati e lacerati.

Oppure si prenda il caso delle terapie psicologiche moderne (per distinguerle da quelle che sono sempre esistite, sia presso i popoli tribali, ad esempio con i riti d’iniziazione, sia presso il mondo classico, ad esempio con la catarsi provocata nel pubblico dalla tragedia greca): come è possibile che possano essere realmente d’aiuto all’uomo, se esse partono dall’assunto pregiudiziale che non vi sia alcuna anima da guarire, alcuna coscienza da ricostituire, ma soltanto delle funzioni psichiche da ripristinare, in base ad una valutazione arbitraria ed egoistica di ciò che è utile, e non di ciò che è vero, buono e giusto?

Ebbene, non ci sembra che la convergenza di soggettivismo e oggettivazione esasperata si possa definire un fatto paradossale, perché in essa vi è una logica piuttosto chiara e lineare: se il nominalismo sostiene che non possiamo conoscere nulla di reale e il suo naturale erede, il soggettivismo, afferma che dobbiamo agire in base al nostro interesse e non in base alla scelta tra il bene e il male, allora il soggettivismo estremo viene a completarsi naturalmente nelle dottrine dell’oggettivazione, secondo le quali possiamo misurare i fattori che agiscono su di noi, sia dall’interno che dall’esterno, ma non rispondere ad essi con una decisione della coscienza, poiché quest’ultima non è che una vuota parola che diamo, sostanzializzandola, alla rete di influssi che operano su noi sia dall’esterno, sia dall’interno.

Il punto estremo del nominalismo, la filosofia del linguaggio che riduce le cose a frasi logicamente consequenziali, si tocca con il punto estremo dell’oggettivismo, ossia quello strutturalismo che fa sparire il soggetto come sorgente di coscienza e volontà e lo riduce a passiva appendice di forze molto più grandi, che agiscono su di lui a senso unico.

Che sia andata smarrita l’unità della coscienza è un male, perché, con buona pace di certo agnosticismo e di certo relativismo etico, tale smarrimento ha accentuato il senso di solitudine, di impotenza e di frustrazione dell’uomo moderno e ha trasformato la sua vita sociale in un deserto popolato di incubi, di nemici da abbattere o di schiavi da sottomettere.

Quando capiremo che la rifondazione della coscienza, il recupero della sua unità e della sua originaria autonomia, sono i compiti più urgenti che ci dobbiamo dare per il prossimo futuro?

Quando capiremo che ogni altra preoccupazione, che ogni altra indagine, al confronto, sono qualcosa di simile alle dispute sul sesso degli angeli, mentre Costantinopoli stava per cadere?

00:05 Publié dans Philosophie | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0) | Tags : philosophie, individualisme, solipsisme | |  del.icio.us | | Digg! Digg |  Facebook

mardi, 31 janvier 2012

La visione del mondo atomista e oggettivista getta l’uomo moderno in una disperata solitudine


La visione del mondo atomista e oggettivista getta l’uomo moderno in una disperata solitudine

di Francesco Lamendola

Fonte: Arianna Editrice [scheda fonte]

Tante altre notizie su www.ariannaeditrice.it

L’uomo moderno è in preda a una crisi di valori senza precedenti; e, a monte di essa, di una crisi di senso complessiva, che investe ogni singolo aspetto della sua esistenza e lo rende perplesso, confuso, incapace di discriminare e di decidere, vittima di una sconfortante sensazione della vanità e dell’inutilità di qualsiasi cosa, di qualunque eventuale scelta.

Tale situazione è dovuta all’azione concomitante di due forze apparentemente diverse e perfino opposte, ma in realtà originatesi dalla stessa temperie culturale e spirituale: il meccanicismo scientifico, sviluppatosi dalla Rivoluzione scientifica del XVII secolo in poi, che tende ad imporre una visione atomistica della realtà e, quindi, anche dell’uomo; e l’oggettivismo, anch’esso di matrice scientifica, secondo il quale l’uomo, o meglio lo scienziato, può e deve porsi in maniera distaccata davanti al mondo, osservarlo, misurarlo, catalogarlo.

L’atomismo fa sì che gli esseri umani tendano a sentirsi  isolati e separati gli uni dagli altri e, quindi, terribilmente soli e incapaci di comunicare, sia sul piano del pensiero, sia su quello delle emozioni e dei sentimenti; l’oggettivismo tende a recidere il legame necessario fra essi e il mondo, a proiettarli in una dimensione diversa da quella degli altri enti e della natura tutta, in una atmosfera rarefatta e artificiale, ove smarriscono il senso dell’unità con il tutto.

Entrambe queste forze provocano, o accentuano, il senso di estraneità, di alienazione, di disperata solitudine dell’uomo: egli non si ritiene più capace né di gettare dei ponti verso i suoi simili, né di sentirsi parte di una unità organica; e l’effetto di questi due orientamenti è, da un lato, l’accentuarsi della durezza dei rapporti umani, dall’altro l’abuso nei confronti della natura, senza che all’uomo appaiano chiare le terribili conseguenze, anche per lui stesso, di un tale abuso.

Partiamo dal primo aspetto. Le cosiddette scienze umane sono state le prime a teorizzare, sul modello delle scienze naturali, il grossolano meccanicismo di derivazione illuminista e positivista: l’anima è stata ridotta alla psiche e la vita spirituale degli esseri umani è stata ridotta all’insieme delle loro manifestazioni mentali: nessun mistero, nessun senso di riverenza per la dimensione interiore dell’uomo; tutto è spiegabile ed, eventualmente, curabile, partendo da una analisi rigorosa delle quantità in gioco (anche se poi, specialmente nella psicanalisi, questa pretesa “scienza” non esita a ricorrere a dei metodi che ricordano, in tutto e per tutto, un basso cerimoniale di magia nera).

Ma una volta negato il mistero della condizione umana, il suo insopprimibile bisogno di trascendenza, attestato dalla originarietà e dalla universalità del fatto religioso; una volta negata la vita dell’anima, anzi, la stessa esistenza di quest’ultima; una volta ridotto l’essere umano alle sue componenti chimiche, neurologiche, comportamentali, un po’ come nello schema del cane di Pavlov, che cosa ci resta fra le mani, se non un manichino svuotato della sua reale sostanza umana, della sua specifica dimensione ontologica?

Anche nel secondo aspetto si nota l’influsso devastante di una concezione scientista e neopositivista: se, infatti, l’uomo è un osservatore distaccato della realtà (e si noti che le ultime acquisizioni della fisica subatomica, come il principio di indeterminazione di Heisenberg, negano recisamente un tale modello scientifico: ma i divulgatori dello scientismo a un tanto il chilo non lo sanno, e continuano a diffondere i più vieti luoghi comuni del positivismo), allora viene a  cadere la cosa più importante di cui lo scienziato dovrebbe essere dotato: la compassione.

Così come, ne «Il Saggiatore», Galilei descrive la vivisezione di una cicala senza tradire il benché minimo rammarico, la benché minima pietà verso la bestiola sacrificata in nome della ricerca scientifica, allo stesso modo il moderno psicologo e il moderno psichiatra si guardano bene dal provare la minima empatia per l’essere umano sofferente che si è rivolta a loro per ricevere aiuto: si limitano a formulare la loro diagnosi, a somministrare farmaci, a prospettare percorsi terapeutici in nome di un sapere che essi credono asettico e imparziale, mentre è, nove volte su dieci, la prona sottomissione ad una nuova fede religiosa, anzi ad una nuova setta, che non prevede la possibilità di sbagliare e che, cosa più grave ancora, non ha nulla da dire all’uomo quanto al bene ed al male, ma solo quanto alle tecniche di adattamento e di sopravvivenza in un mondo assurdo, allucinato, dominato da forze incomprensibili.

Ma il mondo è davvero così assurdo e allucinato, così incomprensibile, come afferma questa pretesa scienza moderna, oppure è essa che lo vede così e che formula le sue leggi e i suoi princìpi a partire da una percezione del reale che nasce dalla sua incapacità di porsi in maniera armoniosa, costruttiva e fiduciosa nei confronti del mondo?

Siamo sicuri che i vari Newton e i vari Freud non abbiano descritto il mondo a partire dai loro pregiudizi, dalle loro ossessioni, dal loro disperato pessimismo, e che la loro scienza altro non sia che il delirio di una intelligenza arida, fredda, disumana, incapace di cogliere la bellezza e del tutto priva di compassione per la sofferenza altrui?

Così Danah Zohar e Ian Marshall in «La coscienza intelligente» (titolo originale: «SQ, Spiritual Intelligence. The Ultimate Intelligence», 2000; traduzione italiana di Valeria Galassi, Sperling & Kupfer, Milano, 2001, pp. 27-30):

«In Occidente, la cultura tradizionale e tutti i significati e i valori da essa preservati cominciarono a disgregarsi in seguito alla rivoluzione scientifica del diciassettesimo secolo e alla relativa ascesa dell’individualismo e del razionalismo. Il pensiero di Isaac Newton e di suoi colleghi diede impulso non solo alla tecnologia, che poi portò alla Rivoluzione Industriale, ma anche a una più profonda erosione delle convinzioni religiose e della visione filosofica che avevano fino ad allora caratterizzato la società. La nuova tecnologia apportò molti vantaggi ma spinse anche le popolazioni ad abbandonare le campagne per le città, smembrò comunità e famiglie, soppiantò tradizioni e artigianato e rese quasi impossibile una vita basata su usi e costumi. I valori sociali vennero sradicati dalla terra in cui si erano formati, così come la rivoluzione che ne seguì sradicò l’animo umano.

I princìpi fondamentali della filosofia newtoniana possono essere riassunti con le parole “atomismo”, “determinismo” e “oggettività”. Pur apparendo astratti e remoti, i concetti insiti in questi termini hanno toccato fino in fondo il nostro essere.

L’atomismo è l’idea che il mondo consista, in ultima analisi, di frammenti: particelle isolate nello spazio e nel tempo. Gli atomi sono compatti, impenetrabili: non potendo entrare l’uno nell’altro, interagiscono mediante azione e reazione. Si urtano o si evitano. John Locke, fondatore nel diciottesimo secolo della democrazia liberale, usò gli atomi come modelli per gli individui, considerandoli le unità di base della società. La società come un tutto unico, affermava, era un’illusione:; i diritti e le esigenze degli individui erano la priorità. L’atomismo è altresì il fondamento della visione psicologica adottata da Sigmund Freud, nella sua “Teoria delle relazioni fra gli oggetti”.

Secondo questa teoria, ciascuno di noi è isolato all’interno degli impenetrabili confini dell’ego. Voi siete un oggetto per me e io sono un oggetto per voi. Non potremo mai conoscerci a vicenda in nessun modo fondamentale. L’amore e l’intimità sono impossibili. “Il comandamento di amare il prossimo come se stessi”, disse Freud, “è il più impossibile che sia mai stato scritto”. L’intero mondo dei valori, egli riteneva, era una mera proiezione del Super Io e consisteva nelle aspettative di genitori e società. Simili valori sovraccaricavano l’Io di un impossibile fardello e lo rendevano malato, o “nevrotico”, come diceva Freud. Un uomo veramente moderno, secondo lui si sarebbe liberato da aspettative tanto irragionevoli e avrebbe seguito principi del tipo: ognuno badi a se stesso, la sopravvivenza del più forte, e via dicendo.

Il determinismo newtoniano insegnava che il mondo fisico era governato da leggi ferree: le tre leggi del movimento e della gravità. Tutto, nel mondo fisico, è prevedibile e quindi in ultima analisi controllabile. A uguali condizioni seguirà sempre B. Non possono esserci sorprese. Freud inserì anche il determinismo nella sua “psicologia scientifica”, affermando che L’Io indifeso è manovrato dal basso dagli impulsi delle oscure forze dell’istinto e dell’aggressività situate nell’Es, mentre dall’alto riceve le pressioni delle impossibili aspettative del Super Io. I nostri comportamenti, nel corso di tutta la vita, sono totalmente determinati da queste forze in conflitto e dall’esperienza vissuta nei primi cinque ani di vita. Siamo vittime delle nostre esperienze,  come miserabili comparse di un copione scritto da altri. La sociologia e il moderno sistema giuridico hanno rafforzato questa sensazione.

Benché la maggior parte della popolazione sappia ben poco del determinismo newtoniano, dell’Es e del Super Io di Freud, l’idea che siamo vittime isolate e passive di forze più grandi di noi, che sia impossibile cambiare la nostra vita, figuriamoci poi il mondo, è endemica. Siamo preoccupati, ma non sappiamo come assumerci le responsabilità. Un ragazzo di circa vent’anni mi ha detto: “Mi sentivo confuso di fronte a questo mondo frammentario, e siccome ero incapace di ricavarne un senso o di farci qualcosa, sono scivolato nell’apatia e nella depressione”.

L’oggettività newtoniana, o “oggettivismo”, come io preferisco chiamarlo, ha rafforzato questo senso di isolamento e di impotenza. Nel fondare il suo nuovo metodo scientifico, Newton tracciò una profonda spaccatura tra l’osservatore(lo scienziato) e ciò che egli osserva. Il mondo è diviso tra soggetti e oggetti: il soggetto è “qui dentro”, il mondo ”là fuori”. Lo scienziato newtoniano è un osservatore distaccato che guarda semplicemente il mondo, lo soppesa, lo misura e  conduce esperimenti su di esso. Quello che fa è manipolare e controllare la natura.

L’uomo medio moderno vede se stesso semplicemente nel mondo, non come pare del mondo. In questo contesto “il mondo” include gli altri, comprese le eventuali persone intime, nonché le istituzioni, la società, gli oggetti, la natura e l’ambiente. La spaccatura di Newton tra osservatore/osservato ci ha lasciato la sensazione di essere semplicemente qui per vedercela meglio che possiamo. Anche in questo caso non sappiamo assumerci le responsabilità e abbiamo solo una vaga idea di chi o di che cosa potremmo essere responsabili. Non c’è senso di appartenenza verso i nostri rapporti, né sappiamo come riappropriarci della nostra possibile efficienza.

Infine, il cosmo ritratto dalla scienza newtoniana è freddo, morto e meccanico. Non c’è posto, nella fisica di Newton, per la mente o la coscienza, né per nessun aspetto della lotta umana. Paradossalmente le scienze biologiche e sociali sviluppatesi nel diciannovesimo secolo si sono molto ispirate a questo schema, inserendo gli esseri umani, mente e corpo, nello stesso paradigma meccanico. Siamo macchine mentali o macchine genetiche, il corpo è una collezione di parti, il comportamento è condizionato o prevedibile l’anima un’illusione del linguaggio religioso arcaico il pensiero una mera attività delle cellule cerebrali. Come è possibile trovare il significato dell’esperienza umana in un quadro del genere?»


Il soggettivismo estremo, che nasce dallo scetticismo e conduce al senso di isolamento, e l’oggettivismo estremo, che nasce da una ipervalutazione della scienza meccanicista, materialista e riduzionista, che conduce al senso di impotenza e di sconforto, sono, dunque, manifestazioni di una stessa incapacità di porsi in maniera serena, accogliente, armoniosa, davanti alla bellezza del mondo; sono il portato di una maniera arrogante, utilitarista e aggressiva di rapportarsi con gli altri enti, e, in ultima analisi, anche di rapportarsi con se stessi.

Lungi dal poter guidare il cammino dell’uomo moderno, la cultura ereditata dalla visione del mondo atomista e oggettivista è il frutto di una distorsione, di uno squilibrio, di una vera e propria malattia dell’anima: malattia che colora a fosche tinte le lenti con le quali guardiamo il mondo, senza renderci conto che quelle fosche tinte non appartengono alla realtà.

I ciechi non possono condurre altri ciechi, senza che tutti cadano, prima o poi, nel fossato; solo dei vedenti possono condurre i ciechi: ma, perché ciò avvenga, bisogna che i ciechi riconoscano di non essere in grado di vedere e bisogna che si affidino alla guida di coloro che vedono, posto che ve ne siano e posto che siano disposti a sobbarcarsi un tale onere. E coloro che vedono, son divenuti tali perché sanno vedere il Tutto e non solo le singole parti: la loro coscienza, infatti, si è risvegliata…

samedi, 28 janvier 2012

Armin Mohler: discípulo de Sorel e teórico da vida concreta

Armin Mohler: discípulo de Sorel e teórico da vida concreta

amb715fd1078.jpgO “mito”, como a “representação de uma batalha”, surge espontaneamente e exerce um efeito mobilizador sobre as massas, incute-lhes uma “fé” e torna-as capazes de actos heróicos, funda uma nova ética: essas são as pedras angulares do pensamento de Georges Sorel (1847-1922). Este teórico político, pelos seus artigos e pelos seus livros, publicados antes da primeira guerra mundial, exerceu uma influência perturbante tanto sobre os socialistas como sobre os nacionalistas.

Contudo, o seu interesse pelo mito e a sua fé numa moral ascética foram sempre – e continuam a sê-lo apesar do tempo que passa – um embaraço para a esquerda, da qual ele se declarava. Podemos ainda observar esta reticência nas obras publicadas sobre Sorel no fim dos anos 60. Enquanto algumas correntes da nova esquerda assumiram expressamente Sorel e consideravam que a sua apologia da acção directa e as suas concepções anarquizantes, que reclamavam o surgimento de pequenas comunidades de “produtores livres”, eram antecipações das suas próprias visões, a maioria dos grupos de esquerda não via em Sorel mais que um louco que se afirmava influenciado por Marx inconscientemente e que trazia à esquerda, no seu conjunto, mais dissabores que vantagens. Jean-Paul Sartre contava-se assim, evidentemente, entre os adversários de Sorel, trazendo-lhes a caução da sua notoriedade e dando, ipso facto, peso aos seus argumentos.

Quando Armin Mohler, inteiramente fora dos debates que agitavam as esquerdas, afirmou o seu grande interesse pela obra de Sorel, não foi porque via nele o “profeta dos bombistas” (Ernst Wilhelm Eschmann) nem porque acreditava, como Sorel esperara no contexto da sua época, que o proletariado detivesse uma força de regeneração, nem porque estimava que esta visão messiânica do proletariado tivesse ainda qualquer função. Para Mohler, Sorel era um exemplo sobre o qual meditar na luta contra os efeitos e os vectores da decadência. Mohler queria utilizar o “pessimismo potente” de Sorel contra um “pessimismo debilitante” disseminado nas fileiras da burguesia.

Rapidamente Mohler criticou a “concepção idílica do conservantismo”. Ao reler Sorel percebeu que é perfeitamente absurdo querer tudo “conservar” quando as situações mudaram por todo o lado. A direita intelectual não deve contentar-se em pregar simplesmente o bom-senso contra os excessos de uma certa esquerda, nem em pregar a luz aos partidários da ideologia das Luzes; não, ela deve mostrar-se capaz de forjar a sua própria ideologia, de compreender os processos de decadência que se desenvolvem no seu seio e de se desembaraçar deles, antes de abrir verdadeiramente a via a uma tradução concreta das suas posições.

Uma aversão comum aos excessos da ética da convicção

Quando Mohler esboça o seu primeiro retrato de Sorel, nas colunas da revista Criticón, em 1973, escreve sem ambiguidades que os conservadores alemães deveriam tomar esse francês fora do comum como modelo para organizar a resistência contra a “desorganização pelo idealismo”. Mohler partilhava a aversão de Sorel contra os excessos da ética da convicção. Vimo-la exercer a sua devastação na França de 1890 a 1910, com o triunfo dos dreyfusards e a incompreensão dos Radicais pelos verdadeiros fundamentos da Cidade e do Bem Comum, vimo-la também no final dos anos 60 na República Federal, depois da grande febre “emancipadora”, combinada com a vontade de jogar abaixo todo o continuum histórico, criminalizando sistematicamente o passado alemão, tudo taras que tocaram igualmente o “centro” do tabuleiro político.

Para além destas necessidades do momento, Mohler tinha outras razões, mais essenciais, para redescobrir Sorel. O anti-liberalismo e o decisionismo de Sorel haviam impressionado Mohler, mais ainda do que a ausência de clareza que recriminamos no pensamento soreliano. Mohler pensava, ao contrário, que esta ausência de clareza era o reflexo exacto das próprias coisas, reflexo que nunca é conseguido quando usamos uma linguagem demasiado descritiva e demasiado analítica. Sobretudo “quando se trata de entender elementos ou acontecimentos muito divergentes uns dos outros ou de captar correntes contrárias, subterrâneas e depositárias”. Sorel formulou pela primeira vez uma ideia que muito dificilmente se deixa conceptualizar: as pulsões do homem, sobretudo as mais nobres, dificilmente se explicam, porque as soluções conceptuais, todas feitas e todas apropriadas, que propomos geralmente, falham na sua aplicação, os modelos explicativos do mundo, que têm a pretensão de ser absolutamente completos, não impulsionam os homens em frente mas, pelo contrário, têm um efeito paralisante.

Ernst Jünger, discípulo alemão de Georges Sorel

Mohler sentiu-se igualmente atraído pelo estilo do pensamento de Sorel devido à potencialidade associativa das suas explicações. Também estava convencido que este estilo era inseparável da “coisa” mencionada. Tentou definir este pensamento soreliano com mais precisão com a ajuda de conceitos como “construção orgânica” ou “realismo heróico”. Estes dois novos conceitos revelam a influência de Ernst Jünger, que Mohler conta entre os discípulos alemães de Sorel. Em Sorel, Mohler reencontra o que havia anteriormente descoberto no Jünger dos manifestos nacionalistas e da primeira versão do Coração Aventureiro (1929): a determinação em superar as perdas sofridas e, ao mesmo tempo, a ousar qualquer coisa de novo, a confiar na força da decisão criadora e da vontade de dar forma ao informal, contrariamente às utopias das esquerdas. Num tal estado de espírito, apesar do entusiasmo transbordante dos actores, estes permanecem conscientes das condições espacio-temporais concretas e opõem ao informal aquilo que a sua criatividade formou.

O “afecto nominalista”

O que actuava em filigrana, tanto em Sorel como em Jünger, Mohler denominou “afecto nominalista”, isto é, a hostilidade a todas as “generalidades”, a todo esse universalismo bacoco que quer sempre ser recompensado pelas suas boas intenções, a hostilidade a todas as retóricas enfáticas e burlescas que nada têm a ver com a realidade concreta. É portanto o “afecto nominalista” que despertou o interesse de Mohler por Sorel. Mohler não mais parou de se interessar pelas teorias e ideias de Sorel.

Em 1975 Mohler faz aparecer uma pequena obra sucinta, considerada como uma “bio-bibliografia” de Sorel, mas contendo também um curto ensaio sobre o teórico socialista francês. Mohler utilizou a edição de um fino volume numa colecção privada da Fundação Siemens, consagrado a Sorel e devida à pluma de Julien Freund, para fazer aparecer essas trinta páginas (imprimidas de maneira tão cerrada que são difíceis de ler!) apresentando pela primeira vez ao público alemão uma lista quase completa dos escritos de Sorel e da literatura secundária que lhe é consagrada. A esta lista juntava-se um esboço da sua vida e do seu pensamento.

Nesse texto, Mohler quis em primeiro lugar apresentar uma sinopse das fases sucessivas da evolução intelectual e política de Sorel, para poder destacar bem a posição ideológica diversificada deste autor. Esse texto havia sido concebido originalmente para uma monografia de Sorel, onde Mohler poria em ordem a enorme documentação que havia reunido e trabalhado. Infelizmente nunca a pôde terminar. Finalmente, Mohler decidiu formalizar o resultado das suas investigações num trabalho bastante completo que apareceu em três partes nas colunas da Criticón em 1997. Os resultados da análise mohleriana podem resumir-se em 5 pontos:

Uma nova cultura que não é nem de direita nem de esquerda

1. Quando falamos de Sorel como um dos pais fundadores da Revolução Conservadora reconhecemos o seu papel de primeiro plano na génese deste movimento intelectual que, como indica claramente o seu nome, não é “nem de direita nem de esquerda” mas tenta forjar uma “nova cultura” que tomará o lugar das ideologias usadas e estragadas do século XIX. Pelas suas origens este movimento revolucionário-conservador é essencialmente intelectual: não pode ser compreendido como simples rejeição do liberalismo e da ideologia das Luzes.

2. Em princípio, consideramos que os fascismos românicos ou o nacional-socialismo alemão tentaram realizar este conceito, mas estas ideologias são heresias que se esquecem de levar em consideração um dos aspectos mais fundamentais da Revolução Conservadora: a desconfiança em relação às ideias que evocam a bondade natural do homem ou crêem na “viabilidade” do mundo. Esta desconfiança da RC é uma herança proveniente do velho fundo da direita clássica.

3. A função de Sorel era em primeiro lugar uma função catalítica, mas no seu pensamento encontramos tudo o que foi trabalhado posteriormente nas distintas famílias da Revolução Conservadora: o desprezo pela “pequena ciência” e a extrema valorização das pulsões irracionais do homem, o cepticismo em relação a todas as abstracções e o entusiasmo pelo concreto, a consciência de que não existe nada de idílico, o gosto pela decisão, a concepção de que a vida tranquila nada vale e a necessidade de “monumentalidade”.

Não há “sentido” que exista por si mesmo.

4. Nesta mesma ordem de ideias encontramos também esta convicção de que a existência é desprovida de sentido (sinnlos), ou melhor: a convicção de que é impossível reconhecer com certeza o sentido da existência. Desta convicção deriva a ideia de que nunca fazemos mais que “encontrar” o sentido da existência forjando-o gradualmente nós próprios, sob a pressão das circunstâncias e dos acasos da vida ou da História, e que não o “descobrimos” como se ele sempre tivesse estado ali, escondido por detrás do ecrã dos fenómenos ou epifenómenos. Depois, o sentido não existe por si mesmo porque só algumas raras e fortes personalidades são capazes de o fundar, e somente em raras épocas de transição da História. O “mito”, esse, constitui sempre o núcleo central de uma cultura e compenetra-a inteiramente.

5. Tudo depende, por fim, da concepção que Sorel faz da decadência – e todas as correntes da direita, por diferentes que sejam umas das outras, têm disso unanimemente consciência – concepção que difere dos modelos habituais; nele é a ideia de entropia ou a do tempo cíclico, a doutrina clássica da sucessão constitucional ou a afirmação do declínio orgânico de toda a cultura. Em «Les Illusions du progrès» Sorel afirma: “É charlatanice ou ingenuidade falar de um determinismo histórico”. A decadência equivale sempre à perda da estruturação interior, ao abandono de toda a vontade de regeneração. Sem qualquer dúvida, a apresentação de Sorel que nos deu Mohler foi tornada mais mordaz pelo seu espírito crítico.

Uma teoria da vida concreta imediata

Contudo, algumas partes do pensamento soreliano nunca interessaram Mohler. Nomeadamente as lacunas do pensamento soreliano, todavia patentes, sobretudo quando se tratou de definir os processos que deveriam ter animado a nova sociedade proletária trazida pelo “mito”. Mohler absteve-se igualmente de investigar a ambiguidade de bom número de conceitos utilizados por Sorel. Mas Mohler descobriu em Sorel ideias que o haviam preocupado a ele também: não se pode, pois, negar o paralelo entre os dois autores. As afinidades intelectuais existem entre os dois homens, porque Mohler como Sorel, buscaram uma “teoria da vida concreta imediata” (recuperando as palavras de Carl Schmitt).

Karlheinz Weissmann

traduzido por Rodrigo Nunes


vendredi, 27 janvier 2012

¿Qué es una Guerra Escatológica?

¿Qué es una Guerra Escatológica?

Por Sergio Prince Cruzat

Ex: http://geviert.wordpress.com/


I.  Introducción

En este trabajo intento dilucidar el significado de la expresión ‘guerra escatológica’ acuñado por  J. Derrida (1930 – 2004).  La EXPLICACIÓN de la guerra escatológica, no se encuentra en las taxonomías tradicionales de la guerra. Se trata de una problematización propia del filósofo argelino pero que nunca desarrolló. Por lo demás los conceptos mismos de guerra y escatología nunca fueron objeto, por parte de Derrida, de una indagación sistemática. El análisis que yo propongo no es definitivo; constituye un conjunto de conjeturas más que una tesis. Se trata de la descripción de tres escatologías cuyos enunciados son importantes para el estudio de las relaciones internacionales. Lo que presento a la consideración del lector no es otra cosa que un modo de problematización del estudio de la guerra en el siglo XXI.

Cuando se estudia el significado del concepto ‘guerra’, encontramos numerosas taxonomías que remiten a expresiones tales como, guerra convencional, asimétrica, de cuarta generación y, últimamente, guerra irrestricta [1]. No aparece hasta ahora definición alguna de ‘guerra escatológica’. Esto se debe, en gran medida, a que la expresión fue acuñada en un ámbito aparentemente ajeno a los estudios políticos y estratégicos. Esta aparece en un escrito del filósofo posestructuralista francés Jaques Derrida (1930 – 2004). Éste se  titula De espectros de Marx. El estado de la deuda, el trabajo del duelo y la nueva internacional. Data de 1993. En el capítulo II titulado Conjurar el marxismo, se refiere a la  guerra entre escatologías, la guerra por la “apropiación simbólica de Jerusalén”, la verdadera guerra mundial, que demuestra que la promesa neo – evangélica de Fukuyama (1992) no se ha cumplido y sigue siendo sólo eso: una promesa. Fukuyama afirmaba que la caída del comunismo y el triunfo de las democracias liberales marcaban el comienzo de la etapa final en la que no había más lugar para largas batallas ideológicas. En este sentido, la historia habría terminado. El “Fin de la historia”, afirmó Fukuyama, significaría el fin de las guerras y de las revoluciones sangrientas, los hombres podrían satisfacer sus necesidades a través de la actividad económica sin tener que arriesgar sus vidas en ese tipo de batallas. Según Derrida (1992) este evangelio desempeña un papel que excede la trasnominación como cliché retórico e indica la mayor concentración sintomática o metonímica de lo que es irreductible en la coyuntura mundial que tenía [y aún tiene hoy] lugar en Medio Oriente. Allí se movilizan tres escatologías mesiánicas distintas, allí todas las fuerzas del mundo, todo el “orden mundial” participa en la guerra sin cuartel que mantienen, directa o indirectamente las tres religiones del Libro:

[…] la mayor concentración sintomática o metonímica de lo que permanece irreductible en la coyuntura mundial […] tiene su lugar, su imagen o la imagen de su lugar, en Oriente Medio: tres escatologías mesiánicas distintas movilizan allí todas las fuerzas del mundo y todo el “orden mundial” en la guerra sin cuartel que mantienen, directa o indirectamente; movilizan [...]

¿A qué se refiere Derrida cuando habla de la mayor concentración sintomática o metonímica de lo que irreductible en la coyuntura mundial? Veamos. Sintomático es lo que constituye un síntoma de algo y, síntoma, es un indicio que revela un trastorno funcional. Por otra  parte, la  metonimia[2] es un tropo que alude al sentido translaticio. Ambos términos hablan sobre algo haciendo referencia a un otro que se relaciona con el algo de algún modo. Síntoma y metonimia son un hablar, un decir indirecto sobre algo que no es lo hablado o lo dicho. Ambos términos nos indican la existencia de algo velado, inefable que es al mismo tiempo irreductible. En el Corán las metonimias, las metáforas no son un mero recurso retórico, sino que ponen de manifiesto, develan la semejanza entre lo oculto y lo visible. En el libro sagrado del Islam hay una palabra que indica esta conexión, tawhîd. Esta palabra denota la conexión interior entre el mundo espiritual y el material, se refiere a la conciencia de que todo está relacionado, nos recuerda que el mundo no es un conjunto de cosas, sino un conjunto de signos que denotan a otra cosa que no son sí mismo. Una montaña es una palabra, un río es otra, un paisaje es una frase. Todo dice, todo es lenguaje y permanece conectado. Ahora bien, para Derrida lo irreductible es la crisis que afecta una sociedad como resultado de la convergencia de un conjunto relevante de eventos tales como los equilibrios presupuestarios, los imperativos técnicos, económicos, científicos y militares, que están inefablemente vinculados al mundo espiritual. A mayor imposición de estos imperativos materiales  mayor es la irreductibilidad espiritual de una crisis (Derrida, 1991)[3]. Entonces, podemos entender la mayor concentración de metonimia como la mayor cantidad de argumentos espirituales indirectos que demuestran que la Historia se resiste a su fin. Estos argumentos espirituales y materiales se manifiestan con una claridad meridiana en los conflictos, en la crisis permanente que vive el Medio Oriente

Al refutar la tesis de Fukuyama, Derrida abrió,  un nuevo campo de estudio y la posibilidad de una nueva reflexión sobre los conflictos, la guerra y el terrorismo. Todo sintetizado en los acontecimientos del Medio Oriente, en esta guerra sin cuartel que mantienen, directa o indirectamente las religiones del Libro. Estas enfrentan el mundo globalizado en una lucha intestina que tiene rasgos de una guerra civil. Economía y política  de árabes, judíos y cristianos se enfrentan en una lucha sin cuartel que impide la paz prometida por la democracia liberal y el libre mercado que predicó el politólogo de origen nipón.

II.  Los mitemas de las escatologías

Revisemos la estructura o los mitemas[4] de las tres escatologías. Estas comparten la creencia  en una Edad de Oro, en una Teleología de la Historia, en un Demiurgo o un sujeto de la historia y en una sociedad futura: una Jerusalén reconstruida que vendrá al mundo para premiar a los justos.

En la guerra escatológica se enfrentan estructuras fundadas en la creencia de una verdad única, lo que imposibilita un dialogo racional. Cualquier toma y dacca se da entre elementos superficiales. Existe una suerte de dificultad ontológica que impide solucionar el conflicto o acabar con la guerra. El conflicto entre escatologías permite un acuerdo cosmético sólo sobre un tema: los orígenes de la humanidad. Las escatologías comparten lo que llamaré la estructura hesíodica del mito sobre el origen de la humanidad. Comparten la idea de una Edad de Oro que podemos rastrear hasta el poema Trabajos y Días, en donde el poeta relata el mito de las edades:

al principio, los Inmortales, en tiempos de Cronos, crearon una dorada estirpe de hombres mortales, quienes vivían en paz y armonía con los dioses, disfrutando de los deleites de una vida fácil, abundante en riquezas y comodidades, hasta que la vida se les acababa en sueños, sin sufrimiento. Luego, crearon una estirpe de inmortales de plata, de menor inteligencia y belleza. Los niños se criaban bajo la protección de su madre y, ya adultos, vivían poco tiempo lleno de sufrimiento debido a su falta de sabiduría, extremada violencia y falta de respeto por los dioses. Después de que muriera esta estirpe, Zeus creó una tercera, de bronce, interesada solo en la guerra, por lo que la edad de oro es la edad originaria, primigenia, en la cual se vive la unidad original (Hesíodo, [VIII a. C.] 2007).

En lo referente a  la teleología de la historia, su sentido, su finalidad no hay acuerdo posible a pesar de los esfuerzos del ecumenismo. Para las tres religiones del libro este es un tema fundamental ya que expresa el propósito de éstas y  explica la acción presente en pos de aquel futuro lejano. Los especialistas han  distinguido varias formas de teleología, en especial tendientes a diferenciar lo que se entiende por  “finalidad” en las ciencias naturales con lo que se entiende por “finalidad” o propósito en la filosofía y las humanidades en donde se utilizan las nociones de “tendencia, “aspiración”, “intencionalidad” y “propósito para explicar el significado del telos. El fin o el propósito de las religiones del libro es hacer que la fe en la escatología desempeñe un papel efectivo, práctico, reformando la vida humana, preparándola para el gran final.

Sobre este último punto, se presentan las diferencias que impiden el acuerdo de la paz  y que convocan a la guerra para imponer la recta ratio. Los judíos esperan el mesías, los cristianos esperan que el mesías vuelva a gobernar y los islamitas esperan el paraíso en el cual serán premiados con todos los placeres sensuales que les han sido privados en la vida en este mundo. Ni un cristiano ni un judío esperan el paraíso de Alá. Ni un buen islamita espera algo así como la venida del Mesías de origen humano o el Reino de Cristo al final de los tiempos. Así, parece lícito tratar de convertir a los otros a “verdad”. De allí que el otro pase de enimicus a hostis por no aceptar la verdad.

Tener que decidir quién es el sujeto de la historia, el Demiurgo, divide a  las escatologías. Esta decisión implica decidir quién transforma la realidad y mueve la Historia: ¿Yavé? ¿Cristo? ¿Alá? Los atributos de Dios son muy similares en las distintas escatologías, sin embargo, las especulaciones teológicas provocan un abismo insalvable entre ellos. El atributo que da rango de soberano a quienes gobiernan desde el “cielo a sus súbditos, hace imposible la decisión racional. Yavé, Melej haMelajim[5] (rey de reyes de Israel), Alá al-Maalik (el soberano)[6] y Cristo Rey, disputan la soberanía sobre el cuerpo y el espíritu de los seres  humanos.

Aquí surgen preguntas tal como: ¿Qué rey gobierna la historia? o ¿Qué rey gobernará al final de los siglos? En el Medio Oriente combaten los soldados de Dios, los soldados de  Yavé, Jesucristo y Alá. Luchan por establecer un reino, reino de paz, de justicia, de amor pero epistemológicamente excluyente y ontológicamente  intolerante. Por la fuerza de las armas Dios busca imponerse al igual que en las Cruzadas, en las Guerras de religión de Francia, en el Ulster, en los Balcanes, en el Líbano, y en las hostilidades que aún enfrentan a palestinos e israelíes.

En esta lucha del Oriente Próximo se juega el rostro, el carácter que tendrá el Fin de los Tiempos. Por esta razón Derrida pudo afirmar que la tesis del Fin de la Historia de Fukuyama (1992) estaba errada. Es obvio que entonces existían y aún existen fuerzas que luchan, que combaten, que guerrean con la finalidad de imponer su escatología. Una guerra escatológica, una guerra por el Fin de los Tiempos, no se entrega a las reglas del Arte de la Guerra propuestas por  Suntzu, Maquiavelo o Clausewitz. La guerra entre escatologías va más allá de toda regla, de todo límite, de todo concepto tradicional de “soldado” “arma”, y campo de batalla. Por ejemplo, la nueva conceptualización de arma en la guerra entre escatologías considera todos los medios que trascienden el ámbito militar, pero que aún pueden ser utilizados en operaciones de combate. Todo lo que puede beneficiar a la humanidad también puede hacerle daño (Faundes, 2010). Esto quiere decir que no hay nada en el mundo de hoy que no puede convertirse en un arma, y esto requiere pensar que se puede abrir el dominio del reino de armas de un solo golpe: un accidente en un solo mercado de valores, una invasión de virus o el rumor de una o escándalo que dé lugar a una fluctuación en los tipos de cambio del país enemigo o que exponga a los líderes enemigos en Internet, todos pueden ser incluidos en las filas de la nueva concepción de armas (Liang y Xiangsui. (1999:25)[7]

Faundes (2010) también nos dice que observando en detalle el fenómeno guerra, tal como lo describen los coroneles China Liang y Xiangsui (1999)[8], es posible entender que la sutileza es una nueva herramienta que se puede explotar, por medio de ataques imperceptibles que afecten el funcionamiento regular de un país, por ejemplo alterando la calidad del agua, atentando contra los productos de exportación, interviniendo el mercado financiero local, azuzando movimientos en contra del poder político (sindicales y étnicos, por ejemplo), efectuando ataques informáticos, etc. Con todo, una Estado puede estar en medio de una guerra escatológica sin siquiera saberlo, peor aún, desconociendo al adversario. Veamos un ejemplo. El 13 de septiembre de 2010 minuto digital.com[9] informó:

“que tal y como informa España y Libertad en su web, la última ofensiva mediática yihadista data del pasado miércoles: los radicales llaman al “boicot” y a “combatir” a España tras conocer que en Águilas se reabrió una discoteca de nombre La Meca. Los yihadistas, incluso, amenazan con una «gran guerra entre España y el pueblo del Islam”.

A pesar de la violencia del discurso yihadista, no todos los españoles saben que están en medio de un combate escatológico, como el que vivieron hace siglos. La guerra con el Islam no terminó con la conquista de Granada en 1492 y desde entonces las armas se han sofisticado hasta llegar a ser armas de la cotidianeidad. Liang y Xiangsui precisan:

“Lo que debe quedar claro es que el nuevo concepto de armas está en el proceso de creación de nuevas armas que están estrechamente relacionadas con la vida de la gente común”. Con el advenimiento de este nuevo concepto de las armas la guerra escatológica se elevará a un nivel insospechado por la gente común y los militares: “Creemos que algunas personas despertarán por la mañana para descubrir con sorpresa que algunos objetos amables y cotidianos han comenzado a tener características ofensivas y letales (Liang y Xiangsui, 1999:26).[10]

III. Los mitemas del soldado

El soldado que combate al alero de una escatología tiene clara la distinción entre el bien y el mal. Nada más necesario. Esta claridad que no existe entre los filósofos contemporáneos permite al soldado saber que su causa es justa en tanto él es servidor del bien. Esta licenciado y protegido por la bondad que encarna la patria, la patria celestial y / o llamada por Dios a ser el eje de la Historia Universal. Las distinciones entre Bien y Mal suelen coincidir con la distinción amigo enemigo y, siguiendo a Schmitt, puedo afirmar que enemigo, es para el soldado de la escatología, aquel el conjunto de hombres y mujeres  que de acuerdo con una posibilidad real se le opone combativamente. [11] Existe un enorme parecido entre el amigo y el enemigo schmittiano que también se observa entre el amigo enemigo escatológico; son una esencia que los hace existencialmente distintos en un sentido particularmente intensivo que hemos mencionado supra: ‘¿Qué Dios es el motor de la Historia?’ Responder a esta pregunta es lo que lleva, quizás, al punto más extremo de su relación ¿Existe alguien, fuera de ellos, que pueda intervenir en la decisión del conflicto? Schmitt responde a esta cuestión diciendo que sólo es posible intervenir en la medida en que se toma partido por uno o por otro, cuando el tercero se convierte en amigo o enemigo. No hay mediación posible, no hay neutralidad posible en el enfrentamiento entre diferentes telos. El conflicto sólo puede ser resuelto por los implicados, pues sólo a ellos les corresponde decidir si permiten su domesticación o viceversa como una forma de proteger su forma esencial de vida. Las opciones escatológicas se definen entre las escatologías, al combatiente sólo puede triunfar o morir. O vivir con honor o morir con gloria[12], es un emblema que indica la realidad del soldado que combate por el Fin de la Historia. El honor se da al vivir en la bondad, en la verdad, el haber alcanzado el telos, el fin. La gloria, la muerte gloriosa es como la que esperan los soldados del Islam, en una muerte Ad maiorem Dei gloriam.

Disciplina. El soldado de infantería, que llevaba una kipá, sacó una tarjeta colorida del bolsillo de su campera. En el exterior estaba impreso el “Shema” (que significa “Oye, Israel”), que es el credo judío. Y rodeado de coloridas ilustraciones de lugares judíos de todo Israel, se encontraba en la parte interior de la tarjeta una “oración para el combate”:

“¡Señor de los ejércitos, que tienes tu trono por encima de los ángeles! Tú nos has ordenado en tu Torá y nos has dicho: ‘Oye, Israel, vosotros os juntáis hoy en batalla contra vuestros enemigos; no desmaye vuestro corazón, no temáis, no os azoréis, ni tampoco os desalentéis delante de ellos; porque Jehová vuestro Dios va con vosotros, para pelear por vosotros contra vuestros enemigos, para salvaros’ (Dt. 20:3-4). … Puedas Tú ahora estar con los soldados del ejército israelí, con los mensajeros de Tu pueblo que hoy van a la batalla contra sus enemigos. Danos fuerza y valor. Protégenos y pelea Tú nuestra batalla. Fortalécenos, protégenos y guárdanos. Ayúdanos y sálvanos por amor a Tu bondad”[13].



Bibliografía sugerida

Cohn, Norman.(1995). El Cosmos, el caos y el mundo venidero.  Barcelona: Crítica – Grijalbo Mondadori.

Faundes, C. (2010). Desde la guerra total a la guerra irrestricta. La deconstrucción de un concepto. Tesis para optar al grado de Magíster en Seguridad y Defensa, mención Política de Defensa, Santiago de Chile: Academia Nacional de Estudios Políticos y Estratégicos.

Qiao Liang  y  Wang Xiangsui (1999). Unrestricted Warfare, Beijing: PLA Literature and Arts Publishing House. Disponible en formato pdf en www.c4i.org/unrestricted.pdf.  Visitado 12 septiembre 2010

Orozco, José Luis. (2001). De teólogos, pragmáticos y geopolíticos. Aproximación al globalismo norteamericano. Barcelona: Gedisa-UNAM

Schmitt, Carl. (1999), El concepto de lo político, Alianza Editorial, Madrid..


[1]    La guerra irrestricta (超限战, literalmente “guerra allende los límites”) es una guerra combinada que trasciende los límites de las dimensiones y métodos en las dos principales áreas de asuntos militares y no-militares, se deben incluir todas las dimensiones que ejercen influencia sobre la seguridad nacional. Para que una guerra sea irrestricta lo suficiente es que se persiga un objetivo político por medio del ejercicio de la violencia en un sentido amplio, es decir, traspasando el dominio de lo militar para combinar de manera irrestricta elementos de las distintas dimensiones de la seguridad, sobrepasando sus fronteras, por medio de combinaciones en lo supra-nacional, supra-dominio, supra-medios y supra-niveles; todo con el objeto de controlar al adversario. En Latinoamérica, la guerra irrestricta ha sido estudiada por Faundes (2010).

[2] La metonimia (griego: μετ-ονομαζειν met-onomazein [metonomadz͡ein], «nombrar allende’, es decir, ‘dar o poner un nuevo nombre» ), o transnominación, es un fenómeno de cambio semántico por el cual se designa una cosa o idea con el nombre de otra, sirviéndose de alguna relación semántica existente entre ambas. Son casos frecuentes las relaciones semánticas del tipo causa-efecto, de sucesión o de tiempo o de todo-parte.

[3]  Derrida, J. (1991). El derecho a la filosofía desde el punto de vista cosmopolítico. Edición On line disponible en http://www.jacquesderrida.com.ar/textos/derecho_filosofia.htm#_edn2 [Consultado el 1 de agosto de 2010]

[4]  Levi-Strauss, C. (1955). El estudio estructural del mito en Journal of American Folklore, nº 68 p. 428-555. En el estudio de la mitología, un mitema es una porción irreducible de un mito, un elemento constante (a diferencia de un meme cultural) que siempre aparece intercambiado y reensamblado con otros mitemas relacionados de diversas formas, o unido en relaciones más complicadas, como una molécula en un compuesto. Por ejemplo, los mitos de Adonis y Osiris comparten varios elementos, lo que lleva a algunos investigadores a concluir que comparten una misma fuente.

[5] También se le nombra como Elohim, plural de Dios que se usa repetidamente con verbos singulares, y con adjetivos y pronombres en singular, de la que una de sus hipótesis de origen indicaría que podría ser un plural mayestático que significa ‘Dios por sobre todos los dioses’ o ‘Dios de todo’ o podría ser simplemente un plural de majestad para indicar la alta dignidad de la persona divina.

[6] Al-Asmā’ al-Husnà (الأسماء الحسنى), en árabe, “los nombres más hermosos”, también llamados los noventa y nueve nombres de Dios o noventa y nueve nombres de Alá, son las formas de referirse a dios en el Islam.  En su mayor parte son epítetos que hacen referencia a atributos divinos.

[7]  Liang y Xiangsui. 1999:25. Citado en Faundes (2010)

[8] Quiao Liang  and Wang Xiangsui (1999). Unrestricted Warfare, Beijing: PLA Literature and Arts Publishing House

[9]  http://tinyurl.com/365lqgs

[10]  Liang y Xiangsui, 1999:26. Citado en Faundes (2010)

[11] Schmitt, Carl. (1999), El concepto de lo político, Alianza Editorial, Madrid.

[12] Esta postura de Schmitt cambia un poco cuando estudia la neutralidad

[13] Escrito encontrado en la libreta de combate del Sargento Mario Antonio Cisnero. Caído en combate en la Gesta de Malvinas en 1982. http://tinyurl.com/297fwsc

dimanche, 22 janvier 2012

Dominique VENNER: Is de geschiedenis werkelijk onpartijdig… ?

Dominique VENNER:

Is de geschiedenis werkelijk onpartijdig… ?

Hieronder vindt u het editoriaal van Dominique Venner in het laatste nummer van La Nouvelle Revue d'Histoire (nr. 58, januari - februari 2012) over het manicheïsme dat tegenwoordig heerst in de manier waarop men de geschiedenis uitlegt.

Landsknechte.jpgVoor hen die goede redenen hadden om de collaboratie te bevechten, was deze verwerpelijk. Het heeft de collaboratie inderdaad niet aan verfoeibare aspecten ontbroken. Niettemin hebben zich zowel aan Franse als aan Duitse zijde mensen in eer en geweten ingezet voor deze weg, waarvan zij dachten dat hij de juiste was, en die achteraf door de geschiedenis werd veroordeeld. Heel vaak hebben ze hun illusies cash betaald. Niet enkel hebben ze er vaak het leven bij gelaten, of hun vrijheid en hun sociaal bestaan verloren, maar meer nog bleven ze verstoken van de mogelijkheid om hun beweegredenen te duiden. Zowel de overledenen als de overlevenden werden blootgesteld aan de algemene veroordeling van een engagement dat als weerzinwekkend werd afgeschilderd en dat onbegrijpelijk was geworden. De interpretatie die door de overwinning van hun zegevierende tegenstanders werd opgelegd was tegelijkertijd totaal en totalitair (1). Met andere woorden, de geschiedenis, die door de overwinnaars wordt geschreven, legt een absoluut manicheïsme op tussen deze laatsten enerzijds, die geassocieerd worden met het Goede, en de overwonnenen anderzijds, die tot in de eeuwigheid het Kwade belichamen.

Zo gaat het altijd na een godsdienstoorlog. En de Tweede Wereldoorlog was wel degelijk een godsdienstoorlog. De overwonnenen verloren in één klap de mogelijkheid om begrepen te worden. Wat hen rechtvaardigde toen ze nog wapens droegen, verdween in één klap en werd vervangen door een verdict van een proces zonder beroepsmogelijkheid, waarvan de uitkomst op voorhand vaststond, met triomferende inquisiteurs die genoten van de macht die hen in staat stelde hun tegenstanders voor de eeuwigheid – of zo goed als - te veranderen in uitgespuwde criminelen. Ja, ik zeg wel degelijk “voor de eeuwigheid”!

Keizer Julianus, die nochtans nooit bloed liet vloeien voor een zaak die hij als de juiste aanzag, wordt vandaag nog steeds uitgemaakt voor “afvallige” door het collectieve geheugen dat werd opgelegd door zijn zegevierende tegenstanders. Uitleggen dat dit predikaat even lasterlijk als schandalig is, heeft weinig zin. Lasterlijk, omdat Julianus zich nooit bekeerde tot de vreemde nieuwe religie waartegen hij uit trouw protesteerde. Hij was dus niet “afvallig”, maar trouw. Wanneer men wat verder nadenkt, beseft men dat de bijnaam waarmee men hem bedenkt ook schandalig is. In onze Europese wereld, die in principe vrij is van religieuze verboden, is afvalligheid een crimineel vergrijp dat dateert uit een ander tijdperk en eeuwige verdoemenis met zich meebrengt. Ondanks het vervliegen van de tijd en de rehabilitatie door historici blijft deze desondanks aan hem kleven (2).

Ik ben langs deze omweg niet afgeweken van mijn initiële bedenking. Het voorbeeld van de schandvlek die kleeft aan keizer Julianus, die meer dan vijftien eeuwen geleden gestorven is, vestigt de aandacht op de geschiedschrijving na een conflict dat de emoties tot in het extreme heeft beroerd en waarvan de overwinnaars over de exclusiviteit van het publieke woord beschikken. Wat ik geschreven heb over keizer Julianus geldt evenzeer, zij het in beperktere mate, voor de Konstabel van Bourbon, die voor altijd het stigma van « verrader » kreeg opgekleefd door een Frans geheugen dat zichzelf verwart met het geheugen van de staat. Indertijd kon de opstand van de Konstabel tegen Frans I en diens moeder, die hem geruïneerd hadden, op begrip rekenen bij zijn tijdgenoten. Het feodale recht en het principe van de wederzijdse verbintenis rechtvaardigden deze opstand. Dit verdween toen later de nieuwe idee van de natie en van het “verraad” na 1792 of 1870 ingang vond.

Laat ons nu terugkeren naar het manicheïstische oordeel dat de geschiedenis velt over de actoren van de collaboratiejaren. Met twee voorbeelden heb ik de onzekerheden in het historische oordeel aangetoond. Een overwonnene maakt zich dus illusies, wanneer hij voor het vuurpeloton uitroept dat de geschiedenis wel zal oordelen. De geschiedenis is nooit een onpartijdige rechtbank. Zij wordt altijd geschreven door de overwinnaars. Het gebeurt evenwel dat een latere nederlaag van de vroegere overwinnaars, een « historische » nederlaag, namelijk ééntje zonder mogelijkheid om ze ongedaan te maken, uiteindelijk toch nog onvoorzien gelijk geeft aan de vroegere overwonnenen. Zo is het bijvoorbeeld in Rusland gelopen met de Witten, die door de volledige ineenstorting van het systeem dat door de Roden na 1917 was opgebouwd, werden gerehabiliteerd.

Dominique Venner (La Nouvelle Revue d'Histoire nr. 58, januari - februari 2012)

Voetnoten :

1. Totalitair: wat zich aan alles en iedereen opdringt, en zowel het openbare als het privé-leven binnendringt.

2. De grote, onlangs overleden historicus Lucien Jerphagnon, die zelf christen is, was verontwaardigd over de vereeuwiging van de postume veroordeling van de jonge keizer, aan wie hij een boeiende en rijke biografie heeft gewijd: Julien, dit l’Apostat (Tallandier, 2008).

samedi, 21 janvier 2012

De Theologie van de Politieke Correctheid

De Theologie van de Politieke Correctheid


Ex: http://vrijenationalisten.blogspot.com/
“Religie is de opium van het volk” is wellicht een van de meest herhaalde en verkeerd begrepen uitspraken van Karl Marx. In de correcte context zien we een erkenning van de noodzaak voor mensen om zich tot religie te keren om hun ziel te verlichten en om een comfort te creëren waar deze niet gevonden kan worden. Het is de manier waarop mensen orde vinden in een chaotische wereld. Het is een cocon tegen het nihilistische universum en een geloof in een buitenmenselijk bewustzijn. Het is een geloofssysteem dat mensen hun sterkste emotionele vermogens gebruiken en als zodanig het meest effectieve middel is om mensen te binden aan diegenen die dit zullen exploiteren voor hun eigen doelen en macht. 
“Religie is het zelfbewustzijn en zelfvertrouwen van de mens die nog niet is doordrongen van zichzelf of zichzelf alweer heeft verloren. Maar de mens is geen abstract wezen dat buiten deze wereld staat. De mens vormt de wereld van de mens – Staat en samenleving. Deze Staat en samenleving produceren religie, dat een omgekeerd bewustzijn van de wereld is, omdat zij een omgekeerde wereld zijn. Religie is de algemene theorie van deze wereld, haar encyclopedische compendium, haar logica in een populaire vorm, haar enthousiasme, haar morele sanctie en haar universele basis van consolidatie en rechtvaardiging. Het is de fantastische realisatie van de menselijke essentie omdat de menselijke essentie nog geen echte realiteit heeft verworven. Een strijd tegen religie is om die reden dan ook een strijd tegen een wereld wiens spirituele aroma religie is. Religieus lijden is, op hetzelfde moment, de expressie van echt lijden en een protest tegen echt lijden. Religie is de zucht van het onderdrukte wezen, het hart van een harteloze wereld, en de ziel van zielloze condities. Het is de opium van het volk. De afschaffing van religie als het illusoire geluk van het volk is de eis voor hun echte geluk. Om hen op te roepen om hun illusies op te geven is om hen op te roepen een conditie op te geven die illusies nodig heeft. “ Karl Marx
In het begin van de eenentwintigste eeuw kunnen we in de Westerse wereld terug kijken en de afname zien van de theocratische controle binnen Westerse samenlevingen. Samenlevingen welke langzaam en pijnlijk, en niet zonder martelaars, de opgelegde lasten van religieuze geloofsystemen van zich af hebben weten te werpen. De Westerse wereld heeft besloten om op eigen benen te gaan staan en de grote leegte en betekenisloosheid van het bestaan te confronteren zoals het is, en niet zoals we willen dat het is.
Echter met de afname van de macht van de kerk, hoeven we niet noodzakelijk het einde van religie te zien. Nieuwe religies verschijnen om de leegte op te vullen. New-Age religies, verschillende samenzwerende cults en sekten, Oosterse religies en mysticisme en wellicht de meest prominente van allemaal de Politieke Correctheid. Politieke Correctheid is een moreel systeem dat wordt gebruikt om vorm te geven aan taal, gedachten, beleid en sociale standaarden ter ondersteuning van de Links Liberale idealen. Politieke Correctheid is niet ontstaan als resultaat van wetenschappelijke studie noch is het gebaseerd op een hypothetisch feit dat is aangetoond, het is eerder een systeem dat is geformuleerd om in een bepaalde politieke behoefte te voorzien. Het is een systeem van geloof, gebaseerd op een geloof.
Op veel gebieden zijn er duidelijke parallellen tussen Politieke Correctheid en religie. Het gedraagt zich in veel gevallen net als religie, het vervult dezelfde behoeften als religie. We kunnen gerust stellen dat Politieke Correctheid een religie is. Het is een moderne, gedecentraliseerde kerk. Het is de religie waarbij iedereen een priester of dominee kan worden en daarom macht over mensen kan uitoefenen. Het is de denkwijze waarvan men kan eisen dat mensen het accepteren zonder bewijs te zien. Het is de moderne ideologie die mensen niet enkel van de religie kan verbannen, maar die mensen uit de samenleving kan verbannen omdat ze niet dezelfde ongefundeerde aannames maken.
Om een moraal systeem te adopteren dat Politieke Correctheid voorschrijft is het maken van morele besluiten gebaseerd op geloof in plaats van feiten. Het is de acceptatie van de moraliteit van de “Hoge Priesters” van de Politieke Correctheid zonder vragen en zonder kritiek. Politieke Correctheid heeft haar eigen doctrine, haar eigen hoge priesters, haar eigen zonden, inquisitie en ketters. Het is op geloof gebaseerd omdat het werkt op onderliggende aannames die worden gemaakt zonder enig bewijs dat die aannames ondersteund. Het definieert welke idealen progressief zijn en welke regressief zijn en neemt het gewoon voor waarheid aan, steunend op de aanhangers die geloven dat het zo is. Het is gewoon een nieuwe poging om orde te vinden waar deze niet bestaat en een veilige cocon te creëren waarin de mensheid een vaststaand lot heeft, waar de natuur meegaand en respectvol is in plaats van onverschillig. Politieke Correctheid beschrijft, net zoals vele andere religies, een wereldbeeld waar de universiteit, het leven op aarde en de mensheid wordt aangepast om op de  “wishful thinking” tegemoet te komen. Het geeft de impressie dat de mensheid in een staat van harmonie en vrede zou leven als men enkel de Politiek Correcte doctrines zou volgen.
De Oorspronkelijke Zonde
Genesis begint met Adam en Eva, de twee creaties van God in de tuin van Eden. De slang overtuigde Adam en Eva om het fruit te eten van de boom van de kennis van goed en kwaad. De slang deed dit met weinig moeite en volgens de geschriften moest de mens het paradijs verlaten vanwege ongehoorzaamheid aan God.
“Door één mens is de zonde in de wereld gekomen en door de zonde de dood, en zo is de dood voor ieder mens gekomen, want ieder mens heeft gezondigd.  Er was al zonde in de wereld voordat de wet er was; alleen, zonder wet wordt er van de zonde geen rekening bijgehouden. Toch heerste de dood in de tijd van Adam tot Mozes over alle mensen, ook al begingen ze met hun zonden niet dezelfde overtreding als Adam. Nu is Adam de voorafbeelding van hem die komen zou.” - Romeinen 5: 12-19 

De zonde die door Adam was begaan veroordeelde toekomstige generaties voor de eeuwigheid, ondanks hun gedrag, ondanks iedere moeite die zij doen om niet te zondigen, tot de dood. Er zijn geen manieren om de ketting te breken en de vlek van de erfzonde te doen verdwijnen. De schuld is automatisch en wordt geërfd bij de verwekking, bijna alsof er genen zijn voor de oorspronkelijke zonde. Mensen zijn gedoemd om naar de Hel te gaan en enkel bepaalde acties kunnen hen redden van deze vurige ondergang. Het is niet genoeg om zonder zonden te blijven, het is niet genoeg om eerlijk, liefhebbend en genereus te zijn, het is niet genoeg om een gouden hart te hebben. Enkel wat de religieuze doctrine voorschrijft kan verlossing bieden.
Dit is een zeer krachtig concept. Ten eerste creëert het wijdverspreide propageren en indoctrineren van deze religieuze doctrine dat er massa’s aan mensen zijn die dit lot willen ontlopen. Ten tweede kan jij en enkel jij de uitweg bieden.
Een persoon kan niet ontsnappen van deze situatie omdat deze bevlekt is sinds de geboorte. Zij hebben geen enkele keus hierbij en hebben geen middelen om de oorspronkelijke zonde tegen te gaan. Dit is het morele equivalent van het creëren van eeuwige dienaren die een morele schuld erven vanaf de geboorte. Een schuld van oneindige kwantiteit die nooit afbetaald kan worden. De Kerk fungeert als een bemiddelaar tussen de schuldenaar en de schuldeiser en heeft dus een positie van macht. Hoewel de Christelijke doctrine van de “Oorspronkelijke Zonde” refereert naar de mens die tegen God zondigt en niet tegen andere mensen, hebben velen de taak op zich genomen om te handelen als schuldeisers voor God. De morele schuld die men vanaf de geboorte heeft zorgt ervoor dat individuen slaven worden van een ander die dit geloofssysteem weet te benutten voor eigen doeleinden.
Het voordeel van het verspreiden van zo’n geloof is duidelijk. Financiële schulden kunnen afbetaald worden waardoor de schuldenaar wordt verlost van de schuldeiser wanneer de schuld is afgelost. Hun nazaten zijn eveneens verlost van deze schuld omdat deze niet langer bestaat. De “Oorspronkelijke Zonde” biedt niet een dergelijke uitweg, de termen van aflossing zijn permanent en zullen door iedere generatie worden geërfd. Generatie na generatie gelooft dat zij zijn geboren met deze zonde. De Theocratie kan vervolgens claimen dat zij de enige middelen voor verlossing bieden. De vraag of het moreel is om iemand “zonde” te laten erven kan niet gesteld worden omdat dit ketterij zou zijn.              
Blanke schuld
De term “Oorspronkelijke Zonde” refereert aan de allereerste transgressie van mensen tegen de wil van God. De kracht van dit concept ligt in haar eeuwigdurende karakter. De “Oorspronkelijke Zonde” is een smet in de bloedlijn. Het hoeft niet noodzakelijk te bestaan om macht over mensen te hebben. Het feit dat iemand gelooft in een smet van zonde bij zijn voorouders is al voldoende.  

Blanke schuld is simpelweg de schuld die Westerlingen van Europese afkomst voelen vanwege de slechte behandeling van andere etnische groepen door blanken. Mensen voelen deze schuld vrijwillig, omdat zij leren over vroegere gebeurtenissen waarvan zij geloven dat deze onjuist waren en waarbij ze een gevoel van compassie en empathie hebben voor de slachtoffers. Of mensen krijgen blanke schuld opgelegd doordat ze geïndoctrineerd worden om te accepteren dat blanken andere etnische groepen en minderheden zouden hebben onderdrukt.
De relatie tussen “blanke schuld” en Politieke Correctheid zijn opvallend gelijk aan de relatie tussen “Oorspronkelijke Zonde” en de oude Theocratieën. Politieke Correctheid heeft dit geëxploiteerd voor vergelijkbare misdadige doeleinden. Het promoot dit idee als een middel om meer eeuwigdurende dienaars te creëren. Blanke mensen die “de schuld” van hun voorouder erven zijn gewillig om herstel betalingen te doen aan diegenen die “kwaad” gedaan zijn, de Politiek Correcte “Priesters” zijn hierbij de schuldeisers. De schuld wordt afbetaald met onderdanigheid en het adopteren van het moraal dat het Liberalisme van ons vraagt.    
Voor een ideologie die het idee aanhangt dat mensen moeten worden behandeld volgens hun individuele daden en karakter is “blanke schuld” een duidelijke uitzondering op deze regel, dit geeft de Politieke Correctheid veel macht. Zoals bij de “Oorspronkelijke Zonde” waar men niet kan kiezen om geboren te worden als een mens zonder zonde, ken men eveneens niet kiezen om als bepaalde etniciteit geboren te worden. Ondanks dat zij zelf geen zonde begaan hebben, worden ze eeuwige dienaars van de Politieke Correctheid. Men moet eerst de morele positie accepteren of men verantwoordelijk kan worden gehouden voor de misstanden begaan door je voorouders. Deze vraag stellen staat, net als bij de “Oorspronkelijke Zonde”, gelijk aan ketterij. Politieke Correctheid richt zich niet op een individuele compassie tegen minderheden, maar eist dat het individu de Politieke Correctheid volgt en de Politiek Correcte doctrine blind en volledig volgt. De Politiek Correcte theocratie, de intellectuelen, politici en andere zelfbenoemde leiders die deze religie van rechtvaardigheid, tolerantie en harmonie bepleiten eisen allereerst onderdanigheid aan hun eigen doctrine en hun bevelen.       
Mensen die zich verzetten tegen de oproep om zich schuldig te voelen en zich te onderwerpen aan de wil van Liberalisme en Linkse Politieke Correctheid richten zich op de aard van de zogenaamde misdaden. Veel tijd wordt gestoken om de ernst van de historische gebeurtenissen te verminderen of het te rechtvaardigen. Sommigen stellen zelfs dat andere etniciteiten beter af waren na de blanke kolonisatie. Anderen proberen om historische gebeurtenissen te weerleggen. Deze pogingen zijn niks meer dan pogingen om de “Oorspronkelijke Zonde” van “Blanke Schuld” te vernietigen door de zonde zelf aan te vechten. De zogenaamde “zondes” waar enkel en alleen Blanke volkeren schuldig aan zouden zijn, zijn in realiteit door de gehele geschiedenis en door de gehele wereld door allerhande rassen en etniciteiten begaan. Men kan discussiëren over het feit dat bepaalde gebeurtenissen fout of niet fout waren, maar dat is niet van belang. Zulke wreedheden zijn eerder een eigenschap van de mensheid als geheel dan van een bepaalde groep, maar ook dit punt is irrelevant. 
Wat veel mensen zich niet realiseren is dat het niet om de (universeel gepleegde) misdaden en wreedheden gaat, maar dat het erom gaat of het moreel is om te suggereren dat iemand die zich nooit daaraan schuldig heeft gemaakt de schuld ervan moet dragen. Wat de tegenstanders van Politieke Correctheid niet begrijpen is dat we niet te maken hebben met een moreel systeem dat objectief is afgeleid van bewijs en historische precedenten, maar dat we te maken hebben met een moreel systeem dat zich baseert op geloof. Men moet zonder reden accepteren dat men schuldig kan zijn aan de “misdaad van vorige generaties”.
Er is geen enkele basis om erfgenamen schuldig te maken voor de misdaden van hun voorouders. De argumenten over deze misdaden, wat er gebeurt is, wie er benadeeld is, en met welke kwantiteit is volkomen irrelevant. Het gaat erom of het moreel acceptabel is om te suggereren dat mensen zich schuldig moeten voelen omdat ze Westers of Blank zijn. Accepteren dat mensen vanwege hun etniciteit niet erfelijke en niet doorgeefbare aspecten van eerdere generaties zich schuldig moeten voelen is racistisch op zichzelf. De oproep voor Westerlingen om zich te onderwerpen aan bepaalde ideologieën vanwege “schuld” of morele schuldaflossing is een oproep voor blinde onderwerping. Het geeft bepaalde mensen macht door andere mensen te bedwelmen. Politieke Correctheid is een religie die eist dat mensen vanwege de identiteit die zij geërfd hebben hun eigen identiteit vernietigen.   
De manier om te breken met deze ketenen is simpelweg door te erkennen wat de Politiek Correcte klucht echt is; een klucht. Het creëren van “morele schuld” door immoreel mensen te laten geloven dat ze een bepaalde schuld delen. Het is al eerder uitgeprobeerd en succesvol gebleken, echter omdat er geen God figuur is wordt het niet erkend als de verraderlijke religie die ontworpen is om enkele de macht te geven over velen.  

G James