After the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, many conservatives find it hard to respect America as they once did. Instead of a guiding light, they see the United States as spreading liberal ideas worldwide that will have horrible consequences. They fail to realize that the United States has been going down this path for decades and it will fundamentally change how conservatives see patriotism.
Pluralism, according to the dictionary, is a political philosophy in which multiple groups or value systems co-exist in the same society. You may have heard this term in the 1990s, when college campuses taught their students the acronym P.L.U.R. (peace, love, unity, respect) which conveniently — and not coincidentally — shared the first syllable with the term pluralism.
The idea behind pluralism is that instead of trying to find one right answer for everyone, society just accepts those differences as perpetual and stops worrying about uniting them. In theory, we all join together on the basis of our having nothing in common for the ideological purpose of defending our right to have nothing in common.
You would think that conservatives would have seen the writing on the wall back then. But, no: apparently people are still shocked when Christmas is no longer an official holiday, kids get taught the right way to perform anal sex in fifth grade, or gay marriage becomes legal. In a pluralistic society, the envelope of tolerance has to be expanded as widely as possible, with one exception.
Whatever came before is now assumed to be anti-pluralistic and therefore, the enemy. So while the new calendar will have Ramadan, Kwanzaa and Purim, it is not going to have those moldly old Christian holidays. Nor any of that old European stuff. Pluralism requires expanding tolerance, and stuff accepted by the presumably intolerant previous society does not expand tolerance. Thus, it must go.
Understanding this requires an understanding of how pluralism gains its power. Like most ideological systems, it grows strength from opposing things that people do not like; this helps it attract an audience, which in a democracy is the only power an idea can have. That requires that it find targets among the ways and habits of society that are not pluralistic enough, and then stage some kind of tantrum or demonstration to draw attention to that fact and demand its inclusion. Like a virus, it infects cell after cell and uses them as its springboard to the next victim. By definition it cannot go to older traditions and demand they be made more pluralistic, so they are of no use in advancing itself, and thus it discards them.
What this means for conservatives is that society will always go one way under pluralism: the way away from tradition, conservatism and heritage, and towards a society comprised only of individuals with no shared values, culture or belief in common except, of course, pluralism itself.
This means that if you want to keep your tradition, heritage and beliefs, it will be by resisting society and carving out a niche for yourself and, with luck, others who feel the same way. The government is no longer there to defend what you believe in; in fact, government will destroy what you hold dear in order to make room for more pluralism.
Conservatives — who generally pay less attention to trends, memes, fads, tropes, media, crazes and popular opinion than liberals — are about fifty years behind on this issue. They still think that if they just wave the flag, insist on good old-fashioned American values, and put their heads down and work hard, everything will turn out. They do not realize that this society has turned on all of those things and will destroy them. They do not realize that they now live in a society that is hostile to any values system except pluralism, and that pluralism must destroy the old America in order to grow. Even more, they do not realize that people are going along with this because we now live in a society of thousands of laws, none of which favor the person who stands up for what is right against what is convenient.
Think of the holiday Christmas, which will vanish from American holidays within the next few years. Once upon a time we all celebrated Christmas, even atheists. Jews had Hannukah but tended to view themselves as a small minority and so would enjoy the Christmas cheer as well, especially as it overlapped with their own holiday. Atheists saw themselves as an even smaller minority and accepted Christmas for the festival of goodwill that it was. But now, we will not celebrate Christmas. You will either get an “end of year holiday” or flexible holidays which you can use any time of the year. You will not say “Merry Christmas,” you will say either “happy holidays” or “happy vacation.” In a pluralist society, you cannot assume that other people celebrate Christmas or even know what it is, so you default to the safest generic term you can find. Use the rules you do for small talk: sports, weather and shopping are safe topics; avoid religion and politics at all costs. Happy vacation, hope you get to go shopping, fellow Citizen.
In the same way, our political division puts other topics off the menu. Forget about hunting; you might be talking to a vegan. Do not talk about attractive members of the opposite sex; the person you are talking to may be asexual, gay, transgender or feminist. You even have to be careful with family, since that no longer means the nuclear family, but a grouping of sexual convenience. In fact, it is best to talk about nothing at all except the weather and television, because anything will offend someone, and if anyone is offended, your career and social life could easily be over.
Your community will not have the same holidays, foods, manners, or even gathering areas. In fact, everything will become generic because there will be no shared order. You can go to any ethnic restaurant you choose, or any house of worship, but it is all arbitrary; you are going for yourself alone, because the community will not share your views. Since politics overlaps with religion and culture, it will be (well, already is) “offensive” to discuss certain topics or issues, so they will never get decided and rot will set in as government bloats and ignores underlying problems.
There will be no behavioral standard except the laws, and the laws will change in order to include every group. Pedophilia, drug use, or treating people as property may offend you, but that now is simply an opinion. When the law clashes with any group, the police will not enforce, lest they be seen as intolerant.
Eventually dysfunction will be the rule. To protect yourself, you will need private security, and you will go out only to a few places where you know you are welcome. You will hunker down in your apartment or home, and basically pull the curtain across the windows and ignore whatever failure is going on past the edge of your property.
Welcome to pluralism, American conservatives! We are now California nationwide. Nothing will work, nothing will get better, and government will drain everything you have in order to fund it. They will do this because the voters agree on nothing except that they like benefits.
Without culture, all that matters in voting is what free stuff you get. All that matters in shopping is whatever your whims are. The restraints of culture which kept consumerism in check, now abolished, will give way to an intensely permissive era of disposable, novelty-oriented products. Quality will be forgotten; no one can agree what it means, or that it is important.
This sounds dire, but there is a plus side. Much will be lost; America sacrificed itself on the altar of diversity, and will cease to be a superpower. The great institutions of the past will all fall, having joined those who argue for pluralism. Any remaining social unity will evaporate, and the nation will fragment into many special interest groups, most irrelevant and chosen instead of actual issues because actual issues are too hot for most people. Rule of law will collapse, and cities will become even more corrupt than Chicago. Much that your ancestors worked for will simply be destroyed or become an enemy.
On the plus side, however, pluralism forces us to recognize that we need a single standard. Already people are fleeing the cities to the countryside to try to find small communities of people like them. In the future, people will begin creating eruv-like strongholds in the cities where their laws, not the laws of the land, apply. These will be defended much like gang territory in a process known as balkanization. Further strongholds will appear in the countryside, with whole areas that people hostile to outsiders. Your race will be your uniform, as will your ethnic group, your religion, your class, and even your region. When unity fails, it snaps all the way, and then you need a club of people like yourself to beat away others so that you may survive.
This situation of utter chaos will provoke others to take advantage. America has never experienced a real invasion, but it likely will, since little disunified and warring communities present no threat to an organized and well-equipped invasion force. It will simply roll over them, blasting inexperienced fighters and bombing flat any settlements, driving the remaining people away. Most likely, China will seek California, and Russia will take Alaska. Mexico will attempt to seize Texas and Louisiana if it can. Canada might be emboldened to take Maine and Michigan.
The chaos will provide a huge boom in conservatism. Nothing refutes a Leftist idea quite like standing in the ruins, the paint still drying on the hopeful slogans as bullets score the walls. Communities will choose conservative values because only those can protect them, and they will reject Leftism as the source of the pluralism that has impoverished them and set them adrift in a land of prowling enemies.
In the meantime, competition will re-emerge. Without government, the regulations and protections for the disadvantaged that have crippled America socially and economically will disappear. With freedom of association, communities will sort themselves out, driving away ethnic Others and exiling criminals, parasites, lunatics, and perverts. The new people to inhabit this land will laugh at the idea of freedom; there will be only doing right by your community and its standards, or being thrown out into a wasteland of swarming predators.
The smartest communities will make this invisible because if they do not, all the bad people will merely begin acting out an elaborate pantomime of compliance while hiding their corrupt deeds. In an age where every chain is only as strong as its weakest link, communities will look to weed out bad genetics because they know that when the chips are down, the bad will turn on the good and let enemies in.
Patriotism will also die. American flags will be used to start fires and clean stables, or to stuff mattresses and clean floors. People will turn on that which turned on them. They will have loyalty to their community, and if another group even a hundred miles away is destroyed, they will not even blink. This is what a breakup means.
In the cities, many who made their living off of non-essential tasks will find themselves out of work and sold to the highest bidder. Whether that is as servants, or organ donors, will probably change with the values of the market. Life will become cheap, very cheap. Those who lived on welfare will probably go directly into slavery since they will be assumed to be useless in any other capacity. The frail, elderly, and poor will die in the streets because now the health of the community is more important than protecting every last individual, especially from themselves. If the neighborhood kids get restless and burn a local wine or drug addict alive, no one will really care. Fewer mouths to feed means a better life for all, and maybe the kind of excess that once allowed us high technology, libraries, museums, and hospitals.
None of this will surprise anyone because we already see it happening. The influx of immigrants from Mexico overwhelmed our employment markets, and now people are alienated from their own economic system because of the resulting low ages and opportunistic employers. The division of America into special interest groups has made enemies of people living only blocks away from each other, and the dominion of denialists in media and entertainment has made people skeptical of any organized institution. Already the fragmentation is cracking deep into the roots of our makeup as a nation and dust is trickling down upon us.
You will not hear this in public because to admit that Rome 2.0 is falling is to make oneself vulnerable. You are now trying to sell other people on the idea that our problems are not simple and easy, as we have been told and all want to believe, but difficult and will require much sacrifice. People will shoot the messenger on that one, which is why we see censorship all over the media and internet now. To admit dissatisfaction is also to open oneself up to accusations of personal failure, which means that the crowd is likely to turn on you. Even more, people are in love with idea of the beautiful Utopia that equality promises, and if they are deprived of that vision, they will have nothing to live for. No, people will remain in denial up until the end, just like conservatives have for the past few decades.
Conservatives in our time seem to have failed to notice just how adversarial America has become. If you violate any of the tens of thousands of laws or regulation, someone will use their power to destroy you because you were a threat to their authority. This is what happens when trust in a society is lost and people become territorial. As this process accelerates, the Buckleyite libertarian conservatives will stand revealed as being as useless as they are. In addition, no one will need politicians; they will need leaders who are more military than social. Our social order will be regulated by culture, meaning that good people will shun bad and eventually drive them out. That is how it goes when the State collapses, as it always does, in a muddle of chaos and tyranny.
Someone will point out, probably frequently at first and then very rarely, that we could have avoided all of this. We chased ideology like a rainbow and it led us to a pot of what most definitely is not gold. We could have repatriated the Other, not gone down the Civil Rights path, not pursued the Socialist dream, and not attempted to make society fit all of the exceptions to every sensible rule. We could have avoided pluralism. However, once you start with democracy, you end up becoming obsessed with equality, and that leads to a demand for pluralism that will not stop until society comes crashing down.
My advice to conservatives is to get with the times. America the old concept is dead; new America has nothing in common and is based on the liberal dream of class warfare, where those who did not make it under the old system “rise up” and claim it for themselves. You are now the marginalized minority, conservatives, and doubly so if you are white and Christian. This government and this society do not support you. They want to destroy you and take what you have and use it for their own ends. This is what life under pluralism means.
Tags: balkanization, buckleyites, collapse, conservatives, pluralism, rome 2.0