Paleoconservatism presents a unique problem to people born after 1945. Our modern political spectrum has leaned so far to the left that paleoconservative ideas have been almost eliminated from public discourse, and the terms necessary redefined.
Take “nationalism,” for example. Your modern person uses it to mean “patriotism” and thinks himself educated for doing so. In reality, it refers to the doctrine that races or ethnic groups form organic civilizations which constitute the best means of organizing humanity.
From a nationalist viewpoint, one race or one ethny is one nation; the nation is not the government, or some lines drawn on a map, or even an economic or political dogma shared by the group. The nation is organic and it defines itself by heritage.
The IQ figures, crime reports, and ethno-political clashes are not the reason for nationalism. The reason for nationalism is, as in all conservative ideals, a pragmatic notion of “real life”: apart from our fancy institutions, and our invented dogmas, human life is a struggle for individuals to find moral clarity, and groups to find purpose.
Jared Taylor has written for years on The National Question, namely: how do we rediscover a national consciousness, and separate and segregate the white race in America so that it can experience self-rule once again? Unlike the odious White Nationalists, Taylor represents a hybrid between a classic liberal and a 1930s paleoconservative like H.L. Mencken. He is a practical thinker.
Unlike most “white nationalists,” Taylor takes a pragmatic view: the problem is not an inherent superior/inferior balance to humanity, but a combination of the need for identitarian politics and the rather radical differences between racial groups. Diversity itself is the culprit, he argues, because it’s a non-sensical feelgood message but not a functional groundwork for a civilization.
American institutions pursue diversity with such enthusiasm that it would be easy to misunderstand their goals. there is a kind of diversity that is essential for any group undertaking, and one might think this is what Americans are celebrating. A contractor, for example, cannot build houses if he hires only electricians. He needs a diverse workforce of carpenters, roofers, masons, etc. If the advantage of hiring people with different skills had only just been discovered, it would make sense to promote it but that is not the kind of diversity Barack Obama or Lee Bollinger are extolling. They would insist that a “diverse” construction team have the right mix of blacks, whites, Asians, handicapped people, Hispanics, and American Indians. It is not clear how this would result in better houses. (56, emphasis mine)
He divides his book into roughly four parts:
- Diversity has failed. Not only have diversity programs fallen apart, Taylor argues, but members of every ethnic group and racial group choose self-segregation for purposes of both identitarian politics and the practicality of having people like oneself surrounding oneself. To paraphrase my liberal Dad, “I think everyone likes to live, work, date and play with people most like themselves.” Taylor addresses many functions of modern life, including schooling, housing, and the workplace.
- Human nature. First, Taylor explores the scientific evidence for kin-selection and preference in biology, from insects through higher mammals. In a comprehensive review of the theories and examples that address this issue, he shows how kin selection aids survival of any species. Next, the book explores the need for racial identity and how it functions as a kind of cultural and social “glue” that avoids the need for even greater control mechanisms.
- Racial consciousness. The next four chapters each explore an ethnic group and how it views itself: Blacks, Asians, Hispanics and whites. With each chapter, we see similar patterns, and then when we get to the chapter on whites, we see how these patterns are camouflaged and distorted. The previous chapters provided what to most of us is an unknown history of other ethnic groups and how their views of themselves have changed over time in adaptation to historical conditions, but the chapter on white racial awareness shows a stifled and confused expression of identity borne out by actions but not rhetoric, which officially denies it.
- The Crisis. Taylor demonstrates mastery of numerous fields in his research and writing of this book, but the final chapter seems like something straight out of management science. It’s a study of how diversity itself, and secondarily our hypocrisy in dealing with our attitudes toward it, perverts our society from a place of hope and potential to a place of grinding, numbing dysfunction and denial. In this chapter Taylor is like the wise elder our culture needs, warning us of what will come our way if we do not change our path.
Taylor writes with a fluid, amiable prose reminiscent of the smarter writers at Newsweek if they were working for Scientific American. He clearly explains all concepts, cleanly links logical leaps, and guides us systematically through a volume that is both informative and enjoyable to read.
In many ways, the book is a counterpoint to our media-created worldview that has us living in a rather simplistic and narrow version of reality, ignoring essential data. Taylor emphasizes this split succinctly:
Americans must open their eyes to the fact that a changing population could change everything in America. The United States could come to resemble the developing world rather than Europe — in some places it already does. One recent book on immigration to Europe sounded a similar alarm when the author asked: “Can you have the same Europe with different people?” His answer was a forthright “no.” It should be clear from the changes that have already taken place in the United States that we cannot have the same America with different people, either. (286-87)
The entire book works up to this idea through its relentless analysis of mostly cultural, but also biological differences, including intelligence and health. What makes Taylor a man of the future is that these are not disparaging analyses, only a thorough look in order to prove difference. This is not about elitism or scorn, but about knocking it into our heads that even if others are personalities like us, they are biologically and thus mentally different enough that incompatibility is a fact of life.
To this end, throughout the book Taylor illustrates how each ethnic group has self-pride and desires (to some degree) segregation; how no two groups trust each other, and in many cases don’t want to be entangled; how a demographic victory by Hispanics, Asians or Blacks would make the country resemble the places from which those groups had fled. He shows us that diversity is a one-way street to failure.
If we need to pick on faults, they are two: first, it would have been great to see a historical survey of diversity attempted in other nations, showing the cycle of internal fracture and then conflict that resulted; second, this book could use more moments where the author clearly says that the consequences it lists are proof of the basic thesis, which is that diversity itself is unstable regardless of who is involved. This point cannot be made clearly enough or loudly enough, and while it’s in this book, it could be hammered out more powerfully.
White Identity: Racial Consciousness in the 21st Century presents an insightful view into the reality of a situation that we normally package up in homilies like “diversity is our strength” and “freedom for all.” While no mainstream publisher will touch it at this time, that is a failing of the publishers, as this book is considerably more rigorous than most mainstream history or politics books, and in addition, doesn’t simply repeat to us the dogma we already know — it forges ahead with a pathway around a persistent American dilemma.