Why the truth about black dysfunction is so important
The below was originally written as a comment in the July 6, 2011 entry, “Ominous parallels busting out all over,” and subsequently posted in its own entry. I have just revised it for style and clarity, and updated it. It is a key statement of VFR’s purpose.
Why do I focus so relentlessly on these endlessly repeated stories of the massive cover-up, followed by the massive exposure, of black criminality and black failure—which is, we should point out, failure by white standards? Beyond its immediate interest and obvious importance, the truthful communication about black dysfunction and violence also serves the larger purpose of this website, which is nothing less than to save the American nation.
In my view, the greatest single factor driving whites to national suicide is their false guilt over black inferiority. Because whites believe—as modern liberalism has taught them to believe—that all groups have equal inherent abilities, they also believe that the actual inferiority of blacks in almost every area of accomplishment and behavior must be caused by something bad that the whites are invidiously doing to blacks, or by something good that whites are selfishly refusing to do for blacks. However expressed, it all comes down to the idea that black failure is caused by white racism—the transcendent sin of the modern world. And because black inferiority continues, and is even getting worse, the conclusion is that white racism is continuing, and is even getting worse.
The final result of this woefully mistaken thought process is the paralyzing racial guilt which makes whites feel that they have no right to defend and preserve their civilization, no right to defend and preserve themselves, but that they must instead self-sacrificially open themselves to and empower, not only blacks, but all nonwhites. This self-sacrifice takes numerous forms, including denial of the truth of black anti-white violence, denial of the tyrannical and murderous reality of Islam, and unquestioning acceptance of the mass Third-World immigration that is steadily turning America into a non-European country in which whites and their civilization will be steadily weakened, dispossessed, and destroyed. Therefore, as I began saying in the mid 1990s, if whites could see the truth that blacks’ lesser intelligence and other lesser civilizational abilities are not whites’ fault but are inherent in blacks themselves, it could literally save the country, by freeing whites from their suicidal guilt. - end of initial entry -
LA writes (Oct. 10, 2011):
In the entry, “Culturist John Press calls me a racist,” I reply to criticisms of this entry.
Howard Sutherland writes:
This is a very important statement, as you say. I think the main thing to keep in mind is that the problem we are talking about is not really one of black people’s capabilities or predilections in the aggregate. Those are what they are. The real problem is white people’s carefully cherished illusions. Those don’t need to be, at all.
James N. writes:
This concise argument is one of your most important works.
It also points to a larger aspect of the liberal mind.
Everything that can be said of the false self-accusation of racism can be said as well about false self-accusation of “homophobia.” All of the dysfunctional aspects of male homosexuality—depression, self-disgust, suicidality, substance abuse—are now explained as caused, somehow, by “homophobia.”
In fact, of course, all of these behaviors in the male homosexual population are self-caused. The more acceptance, the more public awareness, the more celebration of “gayness”—the worse the social pathologies among men captured by their “sexual orientation” become.
I can’t quite put my finger on WHAT exactly about liberalism has caused persons who never even thought twice about homosexuality to plead guilty to “homophobia,” or, as the mainline Protestants would have it, the “sin of homophobia,” but it is definitely related to the phenomenon of guilt over nonexistent “racism.”
I don’t want to make an all encompassing theory out of it, but in general I think we can say that whites’ false, self-excoriating guilt about white racism (or, alternatively, white liberals’ false condemnation of supposedly non-liberal whites for their racism, which is another side of the same phenomenon) became the template in the white mind by which all the other false guilt trips were formed—“sexism,” “homophobia,” “Islamophobia,” etc.
Buck O. writes:
.”.. if whites could see the truth … ”
But, they don’t and they won’t. There is no evidence to suggest that a sufficient number of whites, who are steadily diminishing in numbers relative to nonwhites, will ever “see the truth,” much less act against the ruling authority and thus save the nation. The country isn’t going anywhere. It’s the American nation that is disappeared. In reality, the stronger evidence is to the contrary and is growing. The population trends and social and cultural fear and submission of whites is overwhelming and can only be reversed or turned back by a will to survive and thrive that no longer appears to exist. We need to lay it on the line in every possible venue. It has to be met in the street. We will not do that.
We are like Al Qaeda in reverse—a small minority of true believers who don’t know how to act.
Deborah A. writes:
Buck O.’s comment reminds me of a conversation with my sister-in-law, a lady I’m very fond of, but a liberal from central casting who still looks at most things from a 1960s feminist perspective. She, my husband, and I were discussing various political topics one evening and I mentioned that Lawrence Auster, in posting a story on an honor killing of six sisters, said eloquently that we can only separate ourselves from the darkness that is Islam.
I was immediately treated by her to a long laundry list of injustices that early American society had inflicted on females, in the spirit of “we are bad too.” I could only reply that I didn’t think our society, despite its imperfections, ever had an ingrained practice as terrible as honor killing.
Not exactly a brilliant reply, but a simple and reasonable statement; I hope I struck a modest blow for Buck O.’s “Al Qaeda in reverse.”
Your answer was just right.
Mark Jaws writes:
I fully concur with the commenters about the power and conciseness of your entry, but I disagree with Buck O about our not knowing what to do. We do indeed know what needs to be done. As I have advocated several times in VFR, our “reconquista” must be done INCREMENTALLY, just as our adversaries applied their anti-white Marxist multiculturalism against us beginning in the 1930s with pleas for equal funding for black schools (late 1930s), followed by the dismantling of segregation (1954), forced integration through bussing (1970s), the advent of multiculturalism (1980s), and the eradication of white heritage and pride (1990s). First, we need to hold the line on tax increases for Obama’s wealth redistribution, and second we need to start on dismantling welfare by pointing to its out of control costs and disastrous results. Eradication of welfare - for illegals, for legal immigrants, and then for native borns - should be where the bull’s eye is painted, and not social security and medicare. That MUST be the first step, and its eradication will be as important to us as Brown vs. Topeka was to the Left. As the Marxists were wise enough to conceal their TRUE MOTIVEs from the public prior to 1965, so must we with the salvation of our country and our people.
In a comment following your excellent post on the significance of black dysfunction for white guilt, you wrote:
I don’t want to make an all encompassing theory out of it, but in general I think we can say that whites’ false, self-excoriating guilt about white racism (or, alternatively, white liberal’ false condemnation of supposedly non-liberal whites for their racism, which is another side of the same phenomenon) became the template in the white mind by which all the other false guilt trips were formed—“sexism,” “homophobia,” “Islamophobia,” etc.
I don’t think you should shy away from considering the more general implications.
The white affectation of guilt (I call it an affectation because there is no personal responsibility admitted, but rather only a claim as to the failings of the culture) proceeds from a certain view of morality that has arisen in the aftermath of the decline of the idea that there are sources of moral authority external to the individual. That view, which is the liberal view, derives from Kant, and holds that to judge and to act morally is to do so impersonally or impartially, detached from one’s own interests, attachments, or social connections. There is an obvious conflict between this view of morality and any idea of commitment to or support for culture into which one was born.
The impersonal moral standpoint calls for neutrality between varying views of the right way to live. Each individual then is free to chose whatever way of life he wishes, and morality can only be that which facilitates such individual choice. Any actual moral structure, such as our own cultural inheritance, is brought before the bar of judgment from a standpoint supposedly independent of it.
I think this point of view, for all its contemporary dominance, is unrealistic. Moral practice is justifiable to the extent it supports and constitutes a valued way of life of some community whose goods are enjoyed by those participating in it. Impersonal “morality,” practiced as if one were completely abstracted from one’s own culture, would not seem to offer up any sufficient basis for the perpetuation of a valued way of life across generations. What it yields up at best is a notion of reciprocal self-interest, but this is a pretty week reed on which to support a culture.
Robert Frost once defined a liberal as someone too open minded to take up his own side of the argument. I think he must have had in mind this notion of the moral as being the impartial. Surely he would have been amazed at the extent to which contemporary liberals have carried this idea, to the point of adopting a positive attitude towards all manner of destructive behavior, all in pursuit of this misguided idea of morality as neutrality.
Karl D. writes:
Buck O. wrote:
”.. if whites could see the truth … ”
Actually, I think they do. But it is a truth so horrible and a denial so powerful that it is buried in the deep dark recesses of their rational brain. It is something that cannot be admitted, especially out in the open. It would literally destroy everything they have come to believe. They would almost rather admit to being a child molester. But on the flip side I believe that even the most hardened liberal, while lying awake in bed at night, will admit the truth, if only for a moment. Of course he then quickly squashes it down and berates himself for his racist thoughts. Actually, I call the hours in between eleven and one a.m. the honest hours. When you are alone, in the dark, safe, with just your bedsheets and your own thoughts before drifting off to sleep. That’s when people really look at themselves and the world as they really are. For the liberal, the truth creeps its way up the back of his neck and through his protective philosophical keyhole. Allowing himself a small bite of the forbidden fruit. I know this all sounds a little Freudian, but thats just how I see it. As well as judging from my experience in dealing with liberal friends on the question of race. The question however is getting them to admit it in the daylight of the real world? I say befriend a liberal and get to work on them with a soft sell approach one on one. ;-)
But, they don’t and they won’t.
David B. writes:
My liberal friend, Professor F., would admit that black IQ is lower, but would point out that some blacks have a higher IQ than some whites. For example, the smartest black person is more intelligent than the dumbest white person. This was his justification for racial preferences.
On black crime rates, he denies it and never gave an inch. When I showed him an article I wrote about the Knoxville torture-murders, he said: “Have you ever seen Deliverance?” To deflect a true horror story, he used a fictional film.
I told you about his approval of the Atlanta woman showing a black man her apartment as a way of showing she wasn’t a racist. Even though she was murdered, Professor F. said, “She had a good heart.”
In my experience, black crime is the issue white liberals do not want to face. When one of these horrors is covered by the press, many white liberals in the comments section say things like “There is no evidence race was a factor,” or, “All races commit crime,” or, “The bigots are out today.”
Sometimes white liberals say, “Blacks are arrested more because police concentrate on black neighborhoods,” or, “Blacks are given harsher sentences than whites.” This is why they are so eager for Great White Defendants in both fiction and real life.
I think Thucydides makes an excellent point, and one which underscores and at least partly explains the phenomenon of the “unprincipled exception”. In contemporary political philosophy, liberal orthodoxy is probably best represented by John Rawls. Rawls takes the abstract, procedural Kantian approach that Thucydides talks about and he applies it to the political sphere. In his most important work A Theory of Justice he argues that a just society would be governed by a social contract that was constructed by a deliberative body of rationally self-interested agents who have no knowledge about anyone’s contingent personal characteristics. An actual society is just, in Rawls view, to the extent that it approximates what a society governed by this ideal social contract would look like.
In practice, the adoption of Rawls’s theory tends to push one to a fairly extreme form of egalitarian social democracy. And for many liberals, something like this ideal social democracy is the standard against which the real world must be judged. To the extent that real world institutions do not approximate Rawls’s egalitarian social democracy, they must be dismantled or reformed one by one. This, of course, takes time and happens piecemeal in practice. And while in practice liberals are able to arrest the dismantling of the culture by appealing to particular cultural goods or traditional practices, they cannot do so in any morally principled way, because they have already stipulated that such particulars must be excluded from political deliberations. So whenever they want to resist some particularly unpalatable consequence of egalitarianism or liberalism, the only option left to them is to fall back on an unprincipled exception.
Buck O. writes:
Mark Jaws writes: “I disagree with Buck O. about our not knowing what to do.”
I didn’t say that we don’t know what to do, I’ve said repeatedly that we don’t know how to act to get it done. Mark is talking about a system of rules. We all know that book of rules. He lists some of the things to be done. Is this something new? Why isn’t it already done? What are we waiting for? “First”? I care little about another temporary manipulation of our taxes. I am talking about the existential challenge facing a dying American nation and people. We could argue about the Tea Party’s accomplishments or about it’s being absorbed into typical dead end politics, but I’m talking about saving a people. The shrinking minority of American people are being descended upon by hordes of aliens and are being betrayed at home by the perverts and nihilist at the gate.
Mark chronicles the history—a steady trend of devastating losses for America—going back to the 1930s. He makes my case. Where are our victories? What we “must be” is not what “we” are. “We” are a hopelessly diverse and alien population, and growing more so. How do we become what we must be? What do we do, that we are not already doing? How do we persuade the majority to change their thinking completely and to become traditional Americans again? That’s not possible. Continuously nibbling around the edges of our system is a pointless waste of time. It’s like beginning to pour a concrete damn after the tsunami is already on the way. We really need to do something different.
And running to somewhere else would be like running from your shadow. How far and how fast before we realize?
Mark Jaws writes:
I am very much enjoying this thread, and I will try to address Buck O.’s concerns. I believe that the Tea Party position of holding the line on taxes is a first step in ending the growth of runaway spending by the federal government, which is responsible for most of what ails the country. Severely reducing welfare or eliminating it and letting the states handle it would at least stop some of the third world hordes from coming. According to the Heritage Foundation, one half of the LEGAL immigrants with children who enter our country are getting welfare. That has to stop, and welfare is the one issue on which even one half of Democrats are with us.
Jim C. writes:
Good post, but I would have titled it thus: WHY THE TRUTH ABOUT BLACK FUNCTION IS SO IMPORTANT. Let’s not kid ourselves, the so-called “black problem” in essence relates to whites allowing blacks to be “moral” parasites. It’s of course laughable and pathetic, as readers of this site are fully aware.
The solution to black parasitism? First and foremost we have to eradicate black-on-nonblack crime. All policy should flow from this realization. My policy suggestions:
1. Criminalize and tax bad parenting. If a 13-year-old thug chooses to assault someone on the subway with a razor, arrest the parents (think of the youth as a pit bull that bit a neighbor because the owner failed to secure it properly). Then tax the parents to the point that they will place the fear of Allah into their children.
2. Any female receiving welfare whose child commits a serious crime forfeits the right to breed, because she has been proven to be a menace to society. This idea of “motherhood” being exempt from sanctions should be changed. Welfare mothers should therefore be seen as a potential enemy to white society.
3. Change the penal code. To prevent further black predation on society it should be decreed that any criminal act that could potentially become fatal (e.g., robbing someone with a weapon) be punished by life in prison. No exceptions (unless the thug is willing to be deported to a Thugtopia). [LA replies: Well, that would certainly get rid of the phrase, “An armed robbery gone wrong.”]
4. Eliminate all racial preferences for blacks, and let them know precisely why they are no longer entitled to said preferences.
5. Let the white liberal defenders of the black underclass know that all campaigns to demonize whites will be treated as hate speech and will be subject to litigation.
That’s a start.
I think that Jim C.’s proposals would be unnecessary if we simply did what Mark Jaws suggests. If we roll back the welfare state, we stop subsidizing dysfunction. Although I am not a libertarian, perhaps the best thing that could happen to the traditionalist position right now is for the country to move towards economic libertarianism. I think this move will, in practice, be both feasible and possibly effective as a long term strategy for restoring moral order.
First, even in our liberal dominated culture the public can understand the force behind libertarian economic arguments. These arguments tend to focus on autonomy and individual liberty and hence they proceed from premises that liberals already recognize as philosophically legitimate. The public will have to be deprogrammed to a much greater extent before they can start to appreciate the case for traditionalism. But the libertarians don’t have to wait for a cultural sea-change. They can state their case now. We can and should exploit any momentum that economic libertarians can gather.
Now, if we take away the welfare state and the bureaucratic machine and stop the handouts, society will revert back to a state which is closer to the natural moral order of things. Vice and dysfunction will once again lead to personal and economic failure. In an environment like this, where we no longer have a “quality of living floor,” those who indulge themselves in “experiments in living” and “alternative lifestyles” will be permitted to fail economically. No more 10 year stints in grad-school for mediocre slackers, no more endless welfare handouts for wastrels, no more cushy government jobs where you can’t be too incompetent to perform. Eventually, in this brave old world, people will have to learn that traditional morality is correlated to one’s economic well-being. This is how is used to be for every generation of humans before the welfare state. Delay gratification, be thrifty, form a stable family unit and get plugged into a religious community and your local society and you can succeed. Don’t do these things, and you will fail or at least be worse off in general.
In other words, the link between virtue and prosperity might be restored once we stop subsidizing dysfunction. Knock out the welfare state, and traditional morality is no longer optional for the great majority of people. Then they will be forced to relearn the moral lessons that were deliberately unlearned during the cultural upheavals of the last four decades. This means, for the black community, a return to the old order where they emulated white Christian values. Their very survival will depend upon it.
Sam says that because libertarian ideas are already familiar in our society, while traditionalist ideas are not, it would be an easy start to make a whole range of helpful changes based on libertarianism, including having “no more cushy government jobs where you can’t be too incompetent to perform.” But blacks are the primary beneficiaries of government jobs from which they cannot be fired. And it’s not non-libertarianism which has set up that system, it’s the felt imperative need of society, driven and enforced by white guilt, to raise blacks to middle class status and keep them there. So libertarianism is not enough to make that change.
It’s the same with the idea, advanced by Mark Krikorian of the Center for Immigration Studies, that immigration can be drastically reduced without any discussion of the racial aspect of immigration, but based solely on the effect of immigration on the economy, the environment, government, etc. As I have said several times to Krikorian over the years, even if he is not interested in race, race is interested in him. Namely, his “race-silent” argument for drastically reducing immigration will in fact drastically reduce nonwhite immigration, since 90 percent of our immigration is nonwhite, and the entire left AND the entire conventional right, all of whom believe in diversity uber alles and the browning of America, will see his plan as an anti-nonwhite, racist measure. If he has no position that is opposed to the pro-nonwhite position of the American mainstream and that can win against that mainstream position, the mainstream will reject his plan out of hand.
Just as a purely race-neutral and race-silent utilitarian position cannot succeed in drastically reducing immigration, because such reduction will drastically reduce nonwhite immigration, a purely race-neutral and race-silent libertarian position cannot succeed in drastically reducing the welfare state and government sinecures, because such reductions will drastically reduce the economic status of blacks.
Scott B. writes:
Excellent summation, thank you.
(For what it’s worth, I think this year has been a sustained peak for VFR in terms of quality—more serious intellectual meat almost every day than you can find on NRO’s Corner in a month.)
I’d just like to comment on this:
I don’t want to make an all encompassing theory out of it, but in general I think we can say that whites’ false, self-excoriating guilt about white racism became the template in the white mind by which all the other false guilt trips were formed—“sexism,” “homophobia,” “Islamophobia,” etc.
Would it be nitpicking of me to say that the leftists’ Ur-victim group were the proletariat, and that there has been an unbroken continuity of evil from Marx to multiculturalism? Rather than cultural leftism being a wholly distinctive beast to old-style economic leftism, which perhaps some might assume your post implied.
As I’ve come to understand leftism, it is fundamentally a false religion rooted in the intuition that gain is zero sum, therefore oneself or one’s group necessarily only succeeds at the expense of another. From which it follows that all inequality ought to be as self-evident social injustice, and all that’s needed in order to institute a heaven on earth is to elevate the poor by leveling the rich.
100 million dead and hundreds of millions more impoverished would suggest that rarely has there been a more unreliable intuition—yet such is the power of ideologies built upon it to inspire fanatical self-righteousness in adherents, that it remains undiminished to this day.
Merely the form mutates—typically once one guise becomes to commonly associated with its evil consequences to be any longer a viable option; whereas what persists is the immensely gratifying belief that one belongs to an enlightened compassionate elect, pursuing a glorious utopian goal, so readily achievable were it not for those selfish bastard obstructionists (who need to be, if not liquidated, at least delegitimized)
Being of essence anti-empirical, each manifestation of leftism has its own particular justification—always presented as axiomatic—as to why the visionary paradigm must be true, despite any appearances to the contrary, from the labor theory of value, to the rationale behind multiculturalism, which says that each culture, broadly speaking and over time, is of comparable merit. (Note, this is not a relativistic theory, as virtually all conservative critics maintain. It is not relativistic to assert that absolute value is equally distributed among all cultures in the long run, which is what most multiculturalists actually maintain, and tends to be assumed even among the minority who spout relativistic rhetoric.)
So, at least as I see it, the path of leftist interpretation runs from economic victims of another economic class, to colonized victims of an economic class (Lenin’s theory of imperialist exploitation), to ethnic victims of another culture (having economic consequences but not essentially explainable in terms of economic classes). And then all the rest … (leaving aside that a more modest feminism was contemporaneous with the abolitionist movement)
There is both continuity from the old, economic leftism to the newer, cultural leftism, and discontinuity. The continuity consists in part in the idea that in both cases equality must be achieved by unearned assistance to the non-haves and the unearned punishment of the haves, as I argued in my article, “How to Oppose Liberal Intolerance.” This is the single standard of leftism which conservatives (for reasons I won’t go into here) always mistakenly call a double standard.
The discontinuity consists in the unprecedented, scorching guilt that cultural leftism imposes on the haves. In the old leftism, there is no equivalent to the racism charge with the power it has to keep an entire society intimidated and in thrall, so that the society would sooner face its own gradual extinction than defend itself, so that members of such a society would rather let themselves and their children be murdered than be “racists” in their own or other people’s minds.
Jim C. writes:
“I think that Jim C.’s proposals would be unnecessary if we simply did what Mark Jaws suggests. If we roll back the welfare state, we stop subsidizing dysfunction.”
What would happen to the children if we stopped subsidizing dysfunction? It seems to me that we would have to adopt Newt Gingrich’s plan, and mandate that the affected children be placed into orphanages.
Mark Jaws writes:
Kudos to Jim C. for his excellent suggestions—particularly #1, which is certainly “do-able,” as well as effective. In developing an incrementalist approach to turn the tide in favor of white westerners, we need to remind ourselves that had multiculturalist Marxists back in 1935 advocated affirmative action, welfare for single mothers, and homosexual marriage they would have surely been tarred and feathered—or worse. Our adversaries were clever enough to move the ball forward slowly, and content to gain a few yards with every play. We need to do likewise.
Mark Jaws writes:
Are you saying we cannot eliminate welfare from the libertarian perspective or the disparate impact perspective? In the long run it really does not matter. We simply need to attack welfare from two different angles. First, it is not the role of the federal government to subsidize dysfunctional behavior, and that is exactly what welfare does. Second, we can no longer bear the costs of welfare, secondary and tertiary effects (depriving the individual of incentive, destroying the family, encouraging bad morals, creating a savage and resentful underclass, encouraging middle-class flight and placing burdens on the criminal justice system).
Welfare eradication will be to us, the pro-white Right, what Brown vs. Topeka was to the anti-white Left.
I think you are right to say that a race-sensitive immigration policy will have to become a central part of the agenda. Indeed, if it doesn’t, no shift towards economic libertarianism can last, because the nonwhite minority has an insatiable thirst for government subsidy. As their numbers grow, so diminish the prospects for scaling back the welfare state.
But in the very short term, I think my initial point stands. I just don’t see any kind of serious race-conscious agenda taking shape among whites in the near future. White anti-racism is just too deeply entrenched to be successfully opposed in the short term. But, as another commenter put it, we can start thinking in incremental terms—let’s just start gaining a few yards on every play. And we can start gaining a few yards by hacking away at the welfare state right now, without having to lay the intellectual and institutional groundwork for the political gestalt shift that will eventually be necessary in order to divert the white majority from its current suicidal, multi-culturalist trajectory. And that is why I think traditionalists win if the center of political gravity shifts in favor of economic libertarianism. To resume the previous metaphor, sure, we don’t score a touchdown, but are still getting moving the ball down the field.
And, for the record, I agree with Scott B. that VFR is hitting its stride in a major way, and is consistently generating a level of discussion that puts the mainstream conservative movement to shame. VFR is, right now, offering up more serious intellectual content per diem than NRO can typically manage to serve out in a month. I’m telling all my conservative friends that they should wean themselves off NRO and start reading people who are serious about actually conserving something worth conserving.
Thank you very much.
Posted by Lawrence Auster at October 07, 2011 11:45 AM | Send
But really, how hard is it to offer more serious intellectual content than NRO? :-)