MacDonald’s anti-Semitism

It is essential to distinguish between anti-Semitic attacks on Jews and legitimate, rational criticisms of Jews. For example, to say that many Jews fear some fictional white evangelical anti-Semitism more than they fear Islamic anti-Semitism, and to say that this belief is both wrong in itself and harmful to society, as Stephen Steinlight has argued, and I expanded on the argument, is a legitimate criticism. It does not demonize Jews as Jews. It says that there is a false belief which is common among Jews and put into action by Jewish organizations, and that is wrong and should be stopped. If such criticism were made, if people said, “This is false, this is offensive, you should stop this,” then many Jews, being rational, would realize that it’s not socially acceptable, and would stop it. This is the way moral correction works among civilized people. Someone indicates that we’re doing something that is wrong and that we ourselves may not have been aware of, and as a result we change our behavior.

By contrast, to portray Jews as the source of all ills, or as simply as the enemy, is anti-Semitism. For example, to say that Jews as Jews are “hostile” to our culture and have organized themselves in a campaign to destroy it, is anti-Semitism. What’s wrong with anti-Semitism is, first, that it’s false, and, second, that the flaw can’t be corrected. If Jews, who have been a part of European civilization since before the time of Christ, are the source of all evil in our civilization, there is nothing for them to do but die.

By the above definition of anti-Semitism, we can say that Kevin MacDonald’s recent article at vdare, “Stalin’s Willing Executioners?”, is anti-Semitic:

Here is an excerpt:

Slezkine’s main point is that the most important factor for understanding the history of the 20th century is the rise of the Jews in the West and the Middle East, and their rise and decline in Russia. I think he is absolutely right about this.

If there is any lesson to be learned, it is that Jews not only became an elite in all these areas, they became a hostile elite—hostile to the traditional people and cultures of all three areas they came to dominate.

So far, the greatest human tragedies have occurred in the Soviet Union. But the presence of Israel in the Middle East is creating there. And alienation remains a potent motive for the disproportionate Jewish involvement in the transformation of the U.S. into a non-European society through non-traditional immigration.

Given this record of Jews as a very successful but hostile elite, it is possible that the continued demographic and cultural dominance of Western European peoples will not be retained, either in Europe or the United States, without a decline in Jewish influence.

The vdare article, as bad as it is, is mild compared to other things MacDonald has written. Thus an article he wrote in 2002 at The Occidental Quarterly starts off with what seems like an interesting discussion of marriage and moral customs in medieval Europe, but by the end of the article, the whole thing comes down to the Jews. Europeans are losing the moral beliefs and habits that created and sustained them for thousands of years because the Jews, as part of their competitive evolutionary aim to destroy the Europeans, have deliberately undermined the European moral system and made the Europeans feel guilty about themselves and so ready to destroy themselves in a fit of altruistic guilt toward non-Europeans. Literally the entire phenomenon of Western suicide, according to MacDonald, is the result of conscious Jewish manipulation. The Jews are the sole agent in the annihilation of European man, who is totally under the sway of their malign power. In MacDonald we find a combination of scholarly-sounding arguments with anti-Semitic conclusions that are as crude, and as implicitly murderous, as anything found in Nazi writings.

Here are excerpts from the last part of the article:

The best strategy to destroy Europeans, therefore, is to convince the Europeans of their own moral bankruptcy. A major theme of my book, The Culture of Critique: An Evolutionary Analysis of Jewish Involvement in Twentieth-Century Intellectual and Political Movements, is that this is exactly what Jewish intellectual movements have done. They have presented Judaism as morally superior to European civilization and European civilization as morally bankrupt and the proper target of altruistic punishment. The consequence is that once Europeans are convinced of their own moral depravity, they will destroy their own people in a fit of altruistic punishment. The general dismantling of the culture of the West, and eventually its demise as anything resembling an ethnic entity, will occur as a result of a moral onslaught triggering a paroxysm of altruistic punishment. And thus the intense effort among Jewish intellectuals to continue the ideology of the moral superiority of Judaism and its role as undeserving historical victim while at the same time continuing the onslaught on the moral legitimacy of the West.72 …

Western societies have traditions of individualistic humanism, which make immigration restriction difficult. In the nineteenth century, for example, the Supreme Court twice turned down Chinese exclusion acts on the basis that they legislated against a group, not an individual.74 The effort to develop an intellectual basis for immigration restriction was tortuous; by 1920 it was based on the legitimacy of the ethnic interests of Northwestern Europeans and had overtones of racialist thinking. Both these ideas were difficult to reconcile with the stated political, moral, and humanitarian ideology of a republican and democratic society in which, as Jewish pro-immigration activists such as Israel Zangwill emphasized, racial or ethnic group membership had no official intellectual sanction. The replacement of these assertions of ethnic self-interest with an ideology of “assimilability” in the debate over the McCarran-Walter act immigration act of 1952 was perceived by its opponents as little more than a smokescreen for “racism.” At the end, this intellectual tradition collapsed largely as a result of the onslaught of the intellectual movements reviewed in this volume, and so collapsed a central pillar of the defense of the ethnic interests of European-derived peoples.

One very prominent strategy for Jewish intellectuals has been to promote radical individualism and moral universalism to the point that the entire ethnic basis of the society is undermined. In other words, these movements capitalized on the fact that Western societies had already adopted a paradigm of individualism and moral universalism, and were highly prone to altruistic punishment of their own people. These movements had the collective effect of undermining remaining sources of group cohesion among Europeans while leaving intact Judaism as a highly cohesive, group-based movement. The exemplar of this strategy is the work of the Frankfurt School of Social Research, but similar comments could be made about leftist political ideology and psychoanalysis. At its simplest level, gentile group identifications are regarded as an indication of psychopathology….


Whether Western individualistic societies are able to defend the legitimate interests of the European-derived peoples remains questionable. The present tendencies lead one to predict that unless individualism is abandoned the end result will be a substantial diminution of the genetic, political, and cultural influence of European peoples. It would be an unprecedented unilateral abdication of such power and certainly an evolutionist would expect no such abdication without at least a phase of resistance by a significant segment of the population—presumably the more ethnocentric among us. Ironically perhaps, this reaction would emulate aspects of Judaism by adopting group-serving, collectivist ideologies and social organizations. Whether the decline of the European peoples continues unabated or is arrested, it will constitute a profound impact of Judaism as a group evolutionary strategy on the development of Western societies.

White nationalists are angry about how marginalized they are in modern society. There is no chance of their ceasing to be marginalized as long as they publish an anti-Semite like MacDonald.

A reader writes:

I don’t know what to make of MacDonald and his generalizations. But aren’t you essentially reacting to him the way liberals react to you: calling you a racist without refuting your arguments. I don’t mean to say that his arguments are irrefutable or that you can’t refute them, it just seems that in your ipse dixit quotation and labeling of his passage you’ve not actually done so. I’d like to see such a refutation, because it seems that some of what he says is true, but that he overgeneralizes his observations and adds to them intelligent-sounding labels like “group evolutionary strategy” that don’t mean much.

My reply:

The falseness and wickedness of his arguments—that the total undermining of Western man is solely the result of the Jews’ conscious manipulation—ought to be apparent to you.

Suppose I said to you, “Your life is going badly, and it’s all because of what that one person is doing to you, he is the cause of everything going wrong in your life. The fact that you are now destroying yourself with drugs and alcohol is the fault of that person, who has tricked you into this suicidal behavior in order to destroy you.” Wouldn’t that argument, by itself, indicate its false and malign nature? Or would you, in the kind of parody of rationality seen in your e-mail, ask for “evidence” that it was false and malign?

You once got furiously indignant when I repeated the questions that had been widely raised about John Kerry’s Vietnam service. You had no doubts there at all, I was just wrong to do that, period. But you look at an out-and-out anti-Semite like MacDonald and you respond that you “don’t know what to make of him,” you accuse me of throwing labels around, and you demand more evidence.

And you say this despite the fact that I began the piece by defining anti-Semitism, and showing how MacDonald’s writings fit that definition.

Another reader writes:

MacDonald writings are clearly tendentious. I often wonder if the gaps in his reasoning are due to abysmal ignorance or willful distortion. One example, he argues that England and France fostered the Enlightenment, pioneered the concept of rights, and developed a native middle class because they expelled their Jews in the late Middle Ages. Now, while it is true that both countries had expelled their Jewish populations (France less so than England) and that both played important roles in the Enlightenment and had a growing middle class, the same can be said for Holland. In fact, in many ways Holland was ahead of even England. It was in Holland that Locke found shelter before the Glorious Revolution. And during that whole period, Holland hosted a significant Jewish population. Indeed, Spinoza, a Dutch Jew, was one of the first modern philosophers. Germany and Northern Italy also developed middle classes with a heavy Jewish presence. None of these rather well known historical facts makes their way into his reasoning. Why is that?

Another example, he points out with creepy satisfaction that Jewish influence declined in Spain between the 15th and 17th centuries, but he ignores that it was during this time that the Middle Class in Spain declined. The only thing that kept Spain in contention as a major power was her fortuitous discovery of the Americas. We can also look at Russia. Before the 19th century, no Jew could live in Russia proper. They were restricted to a Pale of Settlement that included Poland and the Ukraine. Where was the Russian middle class? Where was the Enlightenment? In fact, the standard of living for non-Jews was consistently higher in areas where Jews lived.

Now I wouldn’t say that every good thing comes from the Jews (as some Jewish nationalists often try to maintain), but it’s just as wrongheaded, and far more mendacious, to argue that every evil comes from them, which is what MacDonald often winds up doing.

Carl Simpson writes:

MacDonald’s theory falls apart in at least three areas at a cursory glance:

1. Whites’ suicidal embrace of leftism’s Kool-Aid is present in countries, like Ireland and Scandinavia, were Jews are absent or nearly so.

2, Even if one assumes universal Jewish hostility (which is simply untrue), his theory absolves the large numbers of treasonous whites of moral responsibility on grounds of genetic inferiority. Such people, like GWB, bear more moral responsibility for the disaster that has befallen whites. If MacDonald became dictator and deported every single Jew in America to Israel, we’d still have to deal with the likes of Barry Lynn, the Clintons, the Bushes, the Kennedys, etc., etc. etc.

3. As I’ve mentioned before, Israel suffers from the same disease as the rest of the West. If the Muslims were rational strategists (fortunately they aren’t) they’d abandon the idea of “Palestine” altogether, employ the jihad doctrine of taqiyaah (deception), adopt Israeli citizenship, and breed like rabbits on government largesse until they achieved majority status. The egalitarian impulse already entrenched in Israel would pave the road for eventual conquest.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at November 11, 2005 10:17 AM | Send

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