February 12, 2014
Welcome to VFR


Up until the death of Lawrence Auster on March 29, 2013, thousands of devoted fans came to this website everyday, sometimes two or three times a day. They came for Mr. Auster’s brilliant political and cultural commentary. They felt that his unique combination of insight, combativeness, erudition, wit and warmth could not be found elsewhere. He is much missed and this site continues to draw many visitors each day.

Fortunately, Mr. Auster left this abundant archive and it is a generous gift to those who wish to explore it. It includes quick, trenchant analysis of current events; lengthy essays on a variety of subjects; elegant debate and a systematic philosophy of modern decline. The articles featured in the sidebar are especially important and relevant.

Please feel free to quote from the material here. Those who wish to use longer excerpts may request permission here.

Mr. Auster was a “traditionalist” who is best known for his writings on immigration, race, Islam, Darwinism, politics and feminism. His book, “The Path to National Suicide” was a seminal work in the immigration restrictionist movement. MORE…

Posted by Lawrence Auster Society on February 12 at 05:44 PM
March 29, 2013
Funeral for Lawrence Auster

A funeral mass for Lawrence Auster is scheduled for 1 p.m. Tuesday, April 2 at Church of St. Michael the Archangel, located at Holy Cross Catholic Church, 140 E. Mount Airy Avenue, Philadelphia PA.

Visitation at the church; noon to 1 p.m. Burial to follow.

Posted by Laura Wood on March 29 at 10:18 AM

Lawrence Auster died today at 3:56 a.m., Eastern Daylight Time, at a hospice in West Chester, Pennsylvania. His death came after more than a week of rapidly worsening distress and physical collapse caused by the pancreatic cancer he endured for almost three years.

On Monday evening, after arriving at the hospice in the late afternoon, Mr. Auster read and responded to a few emails. He then closed his battered and medicine-stained Lenovo laptop for the last time. “That’s enough for now,” he said, holding his hands over the computer as if sated by an unfinished meal.

He did not expect that to be the last.

But the blogging career that stands out on the Internet and in the history of American letters as a tour de force of philosophical and cultural insight is over. Mr. Auster entered a state of sedated and sometimes pained sleep the next day, after a night of agony. He spoke no more than a few words during the next two days and died peacefully this morning after about ten hours of unusually quiet and mostly undisturbed rest.

Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 29 at 08:07 AM
March 24, 2013
I am still here

Today I have received many emails that were sent to me starting Monday and I have replied to those few that were reply-worthy. It’s too hard to explain why I had not received them until today.

In any case, please know that I am still alive, that my life as a Christian (though hardly a good one) continues, and that I am not in imminent danger of death. I am leaving the hospital probably tomorrow and within a week will probably be back at my friend’s home.

Why am I not saying more about myself and my circumstances? It’s simply too complicated, given the objective situation, and too difficult, given my physical situation, to say more.

Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 24 at 07:56 PM
March 23, 2013
An important entry posted last night has disappeared from the main page

This is a major symptom—the worst symptom so far—of the florid schizophrenic HAL-like destructive insanity of my Lenovo laptop with Windows XP. Yet the event does not seem a total disaster resulting in the total loss of several hours of intense work. The public entry page itself has not seemed to disappear. When last I checked, a couple of minutes ago, it was here. If the preceding hyperlink to the public entry works and still displays, the public page still exists. The public entry can still be reconstituted. It is about my progress in the hospital. The entry address itself is (or rather it was; who knows how long will continue to exist?): http://www.amnation.com/vfr/archives/024377.html. I am copying everything to different applications for security. But because I cannot send an e-mail from the hospital and I don’t have a USB backup drive with me in the hospital I cannot instantly create a secure backup if the laptop proceeds to total breakdown. The laptop is in worse shape than my body, and seemingly far less responsive to treatment.

But fear not: Alan M., who hosts VFR on his own backup site, does an automatic nightly backup of VFR.

Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 23 at 10:08 AM
March 22, 2013
When in the course of human diseases it becomes necessary for one person to set forth before the world the recent history his own disease …

Yesterday morning—Wednesday morning—beset by innumerable physical problems, I went to the same emergency room at the same excellent suburban Pennsylvania hospital near my friend’s house to which I had gone February 11th, and, in the same manner as last month, was admitted to the hospital on the same day. It was not until today that I had with me my laptop computer (though not entirely: I can get on the Web, but for some reason I cannot receive e-mail; hence my being out of touch).

There is so much to tell about the many developments in my case over the last several days, or over the last three days, or over the last two days, that I would hardly know where to start.

The only way to simplify the story to an account which would not be too complicated to tell clearly and non-confusingly given my present circumstances and present capacity—and without a larger effort than I am willing or able to make given my present desire and capacity—would be to write:

“My condition has improved amazingly over the last two days. Since I was checked into the hospital yesterday morning, the simultaneous, multileveled, and overwhelming pains and discomforts that I had yesterday are all gone.”

At the same time other problems, caused by the treatment itself, have appeared: I am feeling somewhat disoriented and I have occasionally experienced excess sleepiness. My medical team told me in advance of these possibilities. We are working together on fine-tuning the level of intravenous treatment so that it will adequately keep down the pain without in any way incapacitating me.

* * *
What you’ve read so far is what I originally posted just before midnight Friday. But here’s one exception to the abstract generality of this post. Friday afternoon I was brought down from my third floor room to the lowest floor of the hospital, where a non-surgical team in the interventional radiation department punctured and drained with needles the ascites, which is fluid in the abdominal cavity. The doctors believe that my difficulties in swallowing and keeping down food and liquids have not been caused solely by the esophagitus, which is a delayed side effect of the radiation treatment to the brain and the neck, but has been caused by the following chain of cause and effect:

Metastatic growths in the abdominal cavity, which, by the way, have probably caused the recent return of the distension or stretching of the abdomen, has put external pressure on the gastrointestinal organs including the small intestine and the stomach, which in turn has caused upward pressure on the acidic digestive fluids and forced those fluids upward. Thus it is the famous condition of acid reflux, and not the fairly obscure condition of esophagitus, brought on by radiation treatment, that has caused the recent pain and dysfunction in the esophagus, or it’s a combination of both.

So, in order to reduce the dysfunction in the esophagus, as well as for other reasons, my doctors ordered the draining of the ascites in the abdomen, a procedure called paracitesus.The team was chatting amiably with me as they were preparing me for the procedure. In fact what I thought was their preparation, which involved some cold and painful contact with my midsection, was actually the draining process itself. I realized this myself when one of the team dramatically brought out four huge bottles each filled with clearish brown or amber fluid, and the team told me that the fluid was the ascites that had just been drained from my abdominal cavity while I was having an animated conversation with them.

The sight of that mind-blowing amount of amber fluid which had all just been brought out of my abdomen (I had been told long ago by my doctors that there was very little free space in the abdominal cavity) astonished me as much as any astonishing sight I had ever seen. Also, in addition to the four full bottles, there was a half-full bottle. The total was 4.5 liters, which surprised and impressed even the medicos. (However, in the cheerfulness of my awe, I initially missed the bad signs which I only picked up on Saturday: if the ascites was so huge, that probably meant that the tumors that had generated all that fluid where also very big.

In conclusion, folks, this was a one-hour or two-hour episode from the last two days. Do you still wonder why I said at the outset of this post that the full story of the last two days, let alone of the last five days, was beyond my desire or capacity to tell it fully and clearly? The original version of this post, telling the story without any specifics, was a little over 271 words in length. The tale of the draining of the abdominal fluid which I then added to the post was more than 530 words long. The total time it took to write and post and correct the entire thing was around four hours. Blogging takes me a very long time now because my personal functioning is still slow, and, much worse, because my laptop gives me sometime insane, HAL-like, seemingly malicious problems (movingthe insertion point without notice to a different part of the entry’s editing window, failing to save a saved change, saving some changes in a save, and not saving other changes, moving without notice a block of text from one part of the entry to another part. This blog entry is now—as I am executing what I think and hope will be the final save in the entry— is [I had given a number of words which is now gone] and the time is now 4:00 a.m.

Yes I know I, must immediately get a new laptop. But this laptop is not always as insanely bad as I have describe. The unbearable badness has only occurred recently and intermittantly, and it happens only in blogging, not in Word where I do most of my present work, and in Outllook Express.

Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 22 at 11:54 PM
March 19, 2013
I’ve contradicted myself on the question of prayer

It’s funny, but I just realized that when I recently said that I do not relate to praying to God for material benefits for myself, I was contradicting what I was saying—and doing—just a few months ago.

Sometime in the late fall, I had decided on certain prayers I needed to make, and I was making them. The first was that I straighten myself out with God before I die.

The second was that I be able to complete my must-do projects, mainly writing projects, but also personal projects, before I die. (I think there was a third prayer, but I don’t remember what it was; maybe there were only two prayers.)

I feel I have, through God’s grace, made amazing progress on the spiritual goal that I was praying for. In amazed gratitude I’ve written several times about my sense of greater closeness to Jesus.

In any case I was wrong in saying I did not like to pray for material benefits for myself.

Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 19 at 05:30 PM
The present course of my case

I realized that my response to a reader in which I gave “A further account of recent developments in my case” was somewhat contradictory and difficult to follow. I’ve attempted to straighten it up, and also made minor editorial improvements, which were needed.

Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 19 at 04:18 PM
Calling Joel LeFevre, again

As I noted, Joel LeFevre wrote to me last week in response to my request for someone to give me his contact information. He told me that he hadn’t written back to me when a couple of years ago I wrote to him repeatedly on an urgent matter (the “Unofficial Lawrence Auster webpage,” which Mr. LeFevre had created and maintained, had disappeared from the Web) because his server had a problem for a while. Well, I assumed based on his answer that the problem was fixed now. But today I wrote to him on another important matter, and once again the e-mail bounced back with the message that “The following addresses have delivery problems.”

To paraphrase the bard of our time, how many times can a man’s server stop people from communicating with him?

UPDATE: Joel LeFevre has responded, giving me his alternative e-mail addresses.

Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 19 at 01:21 PM
Don’t be afraid of making valid criticisms and complaints: criticisms and complaints work.

See the gracious way a stranger responded to my criticisms.

Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 19 at 10:54 AM
My highest beliefs

I have had this thought going back decades.

I believe in two things: God, and white Western civilization.

Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 19 at 10:24 AM
March 18, 2013
LA, March 18, 2013


Here is a photo of me taken today by Dean Ericson when he was visiting from New York. It was shot a few minutes after I fell down to the ground, mainly because of the exceptional bodily weakness I am experiencing today. The extreme weakness may be a side effect of the radiation treatment, as told in my most recent response to a reader in “Letters from Readers.”
Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 18 at 10:07 PM
A further account of recent developments in my case

Alan Levine writes:

I have not written to you, perhaps wrongly feeling that you were being smothered by expressions of sympathy.

I finally decided to write when it occurred to me that you may be in unnecessary pain. Is ativan the best they can do for you? MORE…

Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 18 at 09:30 PM
A basic rule of e-mail etiquette

Someone sent me a group e-mail today, and I sent her this reply. I have sent many e-mails similar to this one over the years, but this time I decided to post it:

If you are sending an email to multiple recipients, you should not put their names and e-mail addresses in the cc line. That way everyone on the list is included by force in a group he doesn’t know (including you—I don’t know you); and, worse, if people reply to the e-mail, everyone on the list starts getting e-mails from people he doesn’t know, which is very annoying.

The addresses of the recipients should go in the bcc line, not the cc line. This is basic email etiquette.

Thank you.
Lawrence Auster

Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 18 at 08:20 PM
What is writing?

Half, maybe most, of writing is finding faults in one’s own writing, and fixing them, until one finds nothing more to fix. It is an immersion in one’s own flaws, and a constant, unyielding effort to ameliorate them.

Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 18 at 08:28 AM
More on the talented poor

There is in the entry, “NYT: talented poor not choosing to attend good colleges,” a rich, engaging discussion, with readers offering very interesting alternative explanations of the facts reported in the New York Times article.

Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 18 at 08:02 AM
March 17, 2013
My computer problems

Posting entries, adding comments to entries, and revising entries has become incredibly difficult. It takes at least twice the time it ought to, because my three-and-a-half-year-old Lenovo laptop with Windows XP keeps doing unwanted and bizarre things. If I were to catalogue those things in detail, you would be astounded. I think the laptop is slowly breaking down and going maliciously berserk, like the computer HAL in 2001: A Space Odyssey.

At the same time I am extremely reluctant to move my work to my new Asus laptop with Windows 7 or get some other computer, because the time and effort needed to learn and get adjusted to the peculiarities of a new computer would be greater than that involved in continuing to work with my present laptop, as bothersome as that is.

But a possible solution occurs to me. MORE…

Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 17 at 11:52 PM
“The Right Prayer,” cont.

There is another exchange of comments, this one with Kenyon H., about my statement that I don’t like to pray to the Creator of the Universe for material benefits for myself.

In the same entry, I’ve re-written my March 16 reply to Terry Morris which I had said was badly written and was too negative toward petionary prayer.

Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 17 at 10:24 PM
Progress report on book

Yesterday I finally sent to the publisher the chapters in Part One of my book, and some of chapters of Part Two. The book is tentatively conceived as having three parts.

I want to tell in detail this story, because it also involves the very bad, Job-like, many-sided state of suffering under which I was toiling all Friday night, and also several hours on Saturday morning when I was doing this work. The suffering included the intense gut pain (around 70 percent of the unbearable pain I had in late January / early February which was ended by the first nerve block), which suggested to me that the second celiac plexus nerve block, administered on Wednesday, was not working, which in turn suggested to me that my functional life was close to over, because the doctors’ next step would be morphine. But since around noon Saturday—24 hours!—there has been no gut pain, suggesting that my functional life will last at least a couple of months more, giving me the time to finish my must-do projects,

Amazingly, the only serious physical problem I’ve had over the last day is serious bodily weakness, making it difficult for me to move. Even the bad pain down the entire esophagus and the accompanying great difficulty experienced in swallowing (including swallowing the many pills I take each day), which started this past week, and which we learned is a standard result of the radiation treatment, has mostly ended due to a liquid medicine that restores and protects the mucus lining of the esophagus. So, my Job-like suffering has become simple suffering, and it’s not that bad.

I will try to write that entry later. It will accomplish two things at once: it will have specific information on the progress of my work and also specific information on the evolution of my health status, which various readers have asked for, but which I haven’t provided in some time.

Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 17 at 12:41 PM
NYT: talented poor not choosing to attend good colleges

(Note: see in the comments a reader’s correction of my speculation that the poor, talented students of which the Times is speaking are primarily blacks.)

But if, as the Times reports, these students do not even know of the existence of better colleges in America, and they have absolutely no aspiration to attend any schools that are outside their local area, how smart and talented could they be? They appear to have very small horizongs and little knowledge of and little curiosity in the world. Don’t very smart people tend to have large horizons?. My guess is that the Times is doing its usual rationalizations for the intellectual and other deficiencies of blacks. I did not read the entire article,but I’d say that it’s fair possibility that it ends up asserting that these students are culturally and geographically isolated by racial discrimination and by the lack of special federal programs that inform them of the existence of better schools. .The eternal top-priority project and moral obligation of Liberal America (America 2.0)—at unlimited cost in societal effort, taxpayers’ money, and orchestrated white guilt—is to render blacks in general as functional as whites in general. And that will never happen. And no one who makes his living in mainstream America dare say it..

Posted by Lawrence Auster on March 17 at 11:30 AM

[Archives and Search]