Resist and Oppose Liberalism

Background

As traditionalist conservatives, we understand that the current order, although it contains pockets of relative sanity, is, overall, hopelessly corrupt. Although we knew the chances were not good, many of us had been hoping that a renewal of American society could somehow be brought about. We knew that the old America—the predominantly white, Christian America of ordered liberty under God and the Constitution—was in some senses gone. But while the permanent loss of America was seen as possible, even likely, it was not foremost in our minds. We generally focused on what could be done to oppose liberalism.

That has changed. While the recent presidential election did not change anything fundamental (elections cannot do that), it did reveal that even a President who obviously hates and opposes the traditional American way of life can easily be reelected. It revealed that a president who is incompetent at doing what he should, and very competent at pursuing leftist-inspired destruction, can gain the votes of the majority. It revealed anew that in the new America the enemies of a decent order have all the advantages. Barring a miracle, we cannot see how it will be possible to revive a properly-ordered (or at least adequately-ordered) American nation from sea to shining sea.

This insight did not just come from the recent election. Nearly a year ago, for example, Lawrence Auster announced that he no longer believed it possible for America to reject liberalism, and that, in his words, “…liberalism will continue until it has destroyed our civilization, and liberalism itself, having been deprived of its host, will also perish…” This conclusion was not the result of any specific event, but was rather an intuitive insight based on cumulative data.

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What to Do?

It is a dreadful thing to contemplate the loss of one’s nation. An appropriate first response is mourning.

After mourning should come repentance. Part of repentance is to change our understanding of what must be done. Man naturally wants to preserve what is best about his nation, and conservatives, almost by definition, wish to defend their nation from internal (and external) enemies. It is natural for a conservative, traditionalist or otherwise, to view his task as preserving or renewing his nation.

But if this is no longer possible, what’s a conservative to do?

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Long-term, the answer is clear: Serious anti-liberals must shift their long-term goal away from preserving the existing order, and work toward the creation of new, properly-ordered societies. Since American society cannot (barring a miracle) be renewed, and since the radical falsehood and evil of liberalism ensure that any society totally dominated by it (such as America) will eventually collapse, new societies will eventually take its place. We must begin laying the foundations for these future, relatively healthy societies even as we continue to live in the current corrupt society. We must be “in the world, but not of it.”

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That’s the long-term goal. But as Laura Wood recently commented at her blog, “We don’t need to have a clear plan of action NOW. What we need to do now is acknowledge where we are with brutal honesty and get used to it for the time being”. It’s too soon to know exactly what must be done.

But one thing is clear: We must resist and oppose the liberal order. And we must separate ourselves, beginning mentally, from this order.

[This clarifying formulation is taken from an email conversation with Mrs. Wood.]

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While “resist” and “oppose” are largely synonymous, they do have subtle differences of meaning. “Resist” is more passive in its connotation, raising the image of defense against an aggressor, while “oppose” is more comprehensive, encompassing both defense and attack.

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How to Resist

Resistance and opposition require, at minimum:

1. A well-defined object to resist.

2. Good reasons why it should be resisted.

3. A goal, or at least an ideal, toward which resistance aims.

4.  Practical means of resistance.

Some comments about each item on the list:

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1. The objects of our resistance are leftist thinking (commonly called liberalism) and the liberal social order it has created. The thinking and the order are two parts of one inseparable package called liberalism.

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2. Liberalism is to be opposed because its thinking is largely false, and its order deprives man of all that he needs in order to live like a man rather than like an animal or a demon. It deprives him of all the means of spiritual sustenance, such as God, true religion, objective morality, knowledge of philosophically first things, beauty, higher culture, family, nation, honor, and so on.

Liberalism, among other things,

  • denies God, both in the sense of denying that He  exists and also denying that He has any authority over us, thereby contradicting the most basic facts about reality and condemning many to unbelief and damnation.
  • denies, whether implicitly or explicitly, any objective truth, because without a God to ground it, objective truth cannot exist. Unable to participate in any truth greater than himself, the man who believes what most authorities tell him is condemned to a shallow life of hedonism and nihilism, even if it is covered by a veneer of nobility or sophistication.
  • tries to dishonor and suppress Christianity, thereby cutting man off from the vehicle of his salvation.
  • denies that any man has true authority over any other man, thereby creating a system in which rulers and other ambitious men must use force or deception rather than leading openly and honestly.
  • despises and seeks to overthrow male authority in the family, thereby causing much misery, dysfunction and nihilism, as men are deprived of their natural function and women and children are deprived of protectors, leaders, and teachers.
  • declares physical science to be the highest form of knowledge, thereby denying even the possibility of man knowing the answers to his most important questions, questions concerning God, religion, morality, the meaning of life, beauty, honor, and such. Unable to answer his deepest questions, the man who believes what most authorities tell him comes to see reality itself, and therefore his own life, as fundamentally absurd.
  • tries to force us to honor homosexuality and to downplay the seriousness of other forms of sexual sin, thereby encouraging sin, nihilism and social breakdown.
  • encourages women to despise men and to flee their family responsibilities, thereby attacking the very foundation of human life.
  • holds that the historic American nation is infected with deadly doses of “racism,” “sexism,” “homophobia,” “fundamentalism” and, more generally, “intolerance” and “ignorance,” thereby encouraging the young to hate their parents, their nation, and themselves, and enlisting many of them in liberalism’s army of destruction.
  • holds discrimination and judgment to be the greatest evils, thereby depriving man of the means of understanding reality and defending himself, his family, and his people.
  • targets white people for demotion and demonization at the expense of nonwhites, thereby dissolving the historic American nation and making itself the enemy of white people.
  • dismantles the historic culture of America (and any other nation within which it operates), thereby creating an atmosphere of nihilistic multicultural cosmopolitanism, and producing a population of deracinated social atoms.
  • encourages a popular culture of vulgarity, immaturity and ugliness, thereby demoralizing the people by teaching that beauty and honor do not exist.
  • encourages high levels of immigration, especially from those most culturally alien to the native peoples, thereby depriving white Americans of their former way of life  and replacing it with Balkanization, i.e., tribal strife.
  • sympathizes with criminals, perverts, the insane, and, more generally, anyone and anything that is alien and shocking, thereby demoralizing the people by teaching that we cannot and must not defend ourselves against threats to our society.
  • generates an ever-increasing bureaucracy of government-commissioned “experts” and the regulations they impose, thereby suppressing self-confidence, personal initiative and productive economic activity.
  • subverts the traditional legal process in order to force through the changes it desires, thereby destroying respect for law and order.

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3. The goal (or—if the goal is not a practical possibility right now—the ideal) of our resistance to liberalism is the establishment of a new American society or societies that are properly ordered, that is, in accord with the traditions of Christianity, America, and our local region or group.  We are “traditionalists,” but not because we wish to recreate the conditions of the past. Instead, we seek a social order that is grounded in a true knowledge of how reality operates, a true knowledge of the multi-leveled order of being, containing natural, social, moral, esthetic, intellectual and spiritual components, culminating in God, the ground of all being.  But because knowledge of this order of reality has been mostly suppressed by liberalism, and since we seek a social order that is mostly extinct, we must look to the wisdom and ways of the past, updated when necessary to reflect current conditions.

Since the future is unknown, and the present is radically disordered, we have no choice but to look to the past for a record of properly ordered societies. That is why we are “traditionalist” conservatives.

Traditionalist conservatives seek a social order that, among other things,

  • is based on Christianity, in the sense that it affirms the basic Christian views of God, man and society but does not necessarily support only one view of exactly how man must worship or be saved from the wrath of God.
  • publicly honors Christianity, and holds that theology and God-honoring philosophy, not science, are the highest forms of knowledge.
  • acknowledges that some men naturally have authority over others: magistrates over citizens, clergymen over parishioners, teachers over students, husbands over wives and children, mothers over children, and so on.
  • acknowledges not only that authority exists, but that male authority is of fundamental importance for the proper functioning of society at every level, from the family to the national government. Without strong male authority, exercised with competence and love, things naturally fall apart. With this authority, men, women and children can live as they ought.
  • promotes what is commonly called the traditional view of male-female relations: premarital chastity, male headship of the household, female emphasis on childrearing and maintenance of the household, and the importance of birthing and properly raising children.
  • holds that we ought to honor our parents and, more generally, the ways of our people.
  • does not suicidally demand that the people be tolerant and inclusive of a disruptive influx of foreigners, but instead looks on the nation as a people and an order that are good and therefore to be preserved
  • is intolerant of, and seeks to control, crime, vice, perversion, ugliness and the like.
  • recognizes that part of our Western heritage is freedom, provided that it is an ordered freedom under God and the civil law.
  • limits government, out of an understanding that government officials have a natural desire to gain and use more power, and that since government has a monopoly on the legitimate use of force, the growth of government is a fundamental threat against which we must guard. This view does not contradict the legitimacy of authority, because all legitimate authority has limits, beyond which it becomes tyrannical and therefore invalid.
  • uses the law to punish criminals, with the death penalty when appropriate, rather than to satisfy procedural and bureaucratic regulations, or to promote liberalism.
  • regards the nation and its history as fundamentally good, and does not seek radical change. Change is for the purpose of incremental improvement, not the radical overturning of imaginary fundamental injustices.
  • holds that freedom and equality are not (contra liberalism) the primary social goods, and that they become destructive forces when not subordinated to other, more fundamental goods, such as God.

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4. Some points about practical resistance:

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One: The origin and continuing source of the power to resist is your mind. This may seem obvious, but man has a tendency to jump too soon into the practical realm, and to let the practical define how he thinks. If you find that no significant practical and outward resistance is possible right now, you may be in danger of becoming demoralized. Therefore you must be equipped to understand and reject liberalism regardless of your environment. The necessary source and prerequisite of all of practical resistance are your mind and spirit.

It is not enough to be non-liberal in the sense that you do not consciously think liberal thoughts or behave like a liberal. You must actively resist liberalism, or else you will either passively endorse it or actively embrace it. You must be anti-liberal, not just non-liberal.

You must be prepared to retain your spirits even when forced by external circumstances to make a show of going along with liberalism. Totalitarian regimes know that they can generally break the spirits of their opponents by forcing them make a public show of supporting the regime. But just as the Christian life begins with, and is always based upon, repentance and faith in Christ rather than outward actions, so the traditionalist resistor must first and always cultivate his internal opposition to the liberal order, an opposition based on his knowledge of the true, the good and the beautiful.

And if you are forced to make a show of going along with liberalism, see it as what it is: A show. Inwardly, you know liberalism is wrong, and you will not change your convictions to match your external behavior. Your behavior is just a pragmatic accommodation to transient circumstances. You do what you must to survive, and you choose when to fight and when not to, but you don’t give the Liberal Establishment what it wants most from you: your approval.

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And not everyone can be a hero. There is great value in quiet resistance that is confined to the circle of one’s family and friends.

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This is not to downplay the importance of outward actions. Man must always take some outward actions to maintain his spirit and his dignity. But we must acknowledge the priority of the inner life.

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“The origin and continuing source of the power to resist is your mind.” But that isn’t quite right, is is?  As Christians, we understand that nobody can resist the world unless he is in Christ, through repentance from his sins and faith in Christ. God is the ultimate source of our power to resist liberalism.

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Second point: we need organizations that explicitly reject liberalism at its root, and that seek to replace it with proper thought and action. There are a fair number of non-liberal organizations, but we need anti-liberal organizations, whose raisons d’être are to oppose liberalism. The greatest need is for organizations which openly reject all of liberalism, not just part of it.

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Two examples may clarify my meaning. The anti-abortion movement, correct and noble though it be, sometimes fails to acknowledge the big picture. Historically at least, one of the main reasons women have committed abortion is to avoid the stigma of unmarried pregnancy, and therefore anti-abortion organizations may not want to condemn bastardy. While it is true that you should not unnecessarily antagonize a woman whom you are trying to persuade not to commit abortion, the fact remains that we must oppose both abortion and unmarried pregnancy.

And many Christian apologetics organizations, seeking to present reasons to believe in Christ, stay away from “political” issues such as abortion and homosexuality in order not to place unnecessary stumbling blocks in front of the unbeliever. They don’t want the unbeliever to refuse to hear the gospel of Jesus Christ because he’s mad at your politics. But while it is true that one should not change the subject while presenting the gospel, we must both support Christian evangelism and oppose liberalism.

To be anti-liberal, you must understand and reject liberalism at its core principles. You must not just fail to affirm or support liberalism, you must affirm the principles that contradict liberalism.

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So we need organizations that comprehensively teach anti-liberal, traditionalist principles, helping to free men and women from mental slavery to liberalism and to equip and encourage non-liberals. These organizations must not just present scholarly arguments against liberalism. The academy has an ideal of disinterested study, but the anti-liberal organization must be the opposite of disinterested. It must oppose liberalism, both morally and intellectually. It must have a clearly-defined mission of openly rejecting the falsehood and evil of liberalism, and calling for either its defeat or our separation from it.

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Many will thrill to a call to action. But there are also many who sense that something is wrong with the Liberal Establishment, but who lack understanding of the real problem. These people need to be instructed, step by step, in the truths that correct the errors of liberalism. This task goes by the general name of “apologetics,” a word meaning the systematic intellectual defense of a particular doctrine or way of thinking. So we also need to develop a traditionalist apologetics.

It is easy to misunderstand the role of apologetics. Argumentation against liberalism is not done in order to make people agree with us, or to silence their disagreement. Liberals usually will not change their minds, or even silence their rhetoric, upon hearing good arguments against liberalism. And if we expose ourselves too much to the perverse system of liberalism, we will lose our morale. Some liberals occasionally change their minds upon hearing good conservative arguments, but this is rare (unless they are young), and it is especially rare for a member of the liberal ruling class to change his mind, or to stop pushing liberal policies, upon hearing good arguments.  For these reasons, and they are valid reasons, some people disparage or devalue apologetics.

Instead, apologetics in defense of traditionalist conservatism serves a twofold purpose: Although it cannot make people change their minds, it can awaken, in those happy few who are receptive, an intuitive understanding of the important things that have been denied and obscured by liberalism. And apologetics can also strengthen the spirits of nonliberals, as through it they participate in the true, the good and the beautiful, thereby defending themselves from, and cleansing themselves of, the pollution of liberalism. Apologetics at its best places important truths in front of a person, and invites him to agree with them.

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But important though it be, apologetics is secondary. Our primary message is liberalism’s evil and falsehood and our consequent need to separate ourselves from it.  Apologetics supports this message.

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Christian Analogy

There is an analogy here to Christian evangelism. In both cases, we must start with the bad news. In Christianity, the bad news is that you are a sinner under the condemnation of God. In our traditionalism, the bad news is that liberalism is dominant, false and evil. Liberalism promises freedom and life, but delivers slavery and death.

In Christianity, the good news is that through the work of Jesus Christ, your sins can be forgiven. In our traditionalism, the good news is that you can resist the evil of liberalism by discovering the suppressed truth about God, man, and society, the expression of which is largely confined to the witness of the past (that’s why we’re “traditionalists.”)

In Christianity, the response the evangelist calls for is repentance from sins and faith that Christ is God and that He has taken away your sins. In our traditionalism, the response that we call for is to take active steps to distance yourself from the system of liberalism (“repentance”) and to learn and believe what the wisdom of the ages teaches about God, man and society. (“faith.”)

In Christianity, repentance and faith are just the beginning of a new life in Christ, and there is no exact program for how the Christian is to live. But one thing is clear: the Christian is to reject and oppose three things: the world (meaning the wicked systems of the world that oppose Christ), the flesh (meaning his sinful nature) and the devil. In our traditionalism, we cannot specify in advance exactly how new societies will be midwifed, or exactly how they will be organized. That will come later. But it is clear at the beginning that we must reject and oppose the whole liberal order.

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To spread the new gospel, organization will be required. Working to create such organizations is an important medium-term goal of the Traditionalist Resistance.

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57 thoughts on “Resist and Oppose Liberalism

  1. I’ve been feeling my way through the darkness since the election, have tried on and discarded an inordinate amount of new political hats in that time, and have come to the conclusion that fighting anything on a national level is useless and a waste of time. The left controls the national (and most of the local) media and has corrupted what seems now to be a majority of the population (altho they’re largely the urban dwellers).

    The time we on the Right have left to us is too short to start from the ground up. We need to utilize existing political infrastructure to reach our goals.

    I’ve started to try and convince conservatives and alt-righters to join and become active in their state GOP. Like many others, I’ve come to despise and despair in the GOP on a national level; on a state level, tho, they tend to be *much* more conservative, and much more responsive to ideas. And they’re always looking for people to fill leadership roles.

    Our states are becoming the new battleground, as the fedgov seeks more and more hegemony over American citizens. I would urge any and all wanting to join this fight in an active way, to look into their state GOP and get to work :)

  2. In my personal experience, resisting the liberal order can be very demoralizing. You’re often on your own, or have only one or two close friends who agree with the traditionalist cause. Maybe you had an uncomfortable Christmas Dinner due to your own family haranguing you and making snide, pissant comments about your “radical, dangerous, problematic” beliefs. Usually I take solace in the fact the “wrong side of history” is the right place to be, and that, maybe someday, if we’re diligent, our progeny will look back to us as the harbingers of a better time. But all to often, I get this sinking feeling that what we do will never amount to anything.

    But if the Left could subvert and pervert the West, then we should be able to do the same to Liberalism. I don’t mean to “jump too soon” as you cautioned against, but one very simple and, in my experience, effective tactic is ridicule.

    Much in the same way it’s personally hazardous and detrimental to voice traditionalist views in public, it must become frightening and costly to even passively endorse liberal thought. I’m certainly not advocating violence, because Leftism is a lot like a perverted schismatic Christianity; it thrives on martyrdom. But begin to effectively shame and oppress liberals, and you’re well on your way to a cleaner, less degenerate immediate environment.

    Getting called things like fundie, homophobe, racist, sexist, Nazi, bigot, intolerant, etc. are just shaming tactics to convince you to shut up. They make it too socially costly to voice traditionalist, or even anti-liberal arguments. So what do you do? Describe the problem with greater and greater precision? No, strike back! Or better yet, strike first. They are not shameless. They are quite vulnerable to shaming techniques; that’s why it’s the first weapon they reach for. They only use against you what they themselves fear the most.

    Here in the States, with the gun control debate raging in the wake of the Sandy Hook killing, the leftists feel emboldened to characterize every gun owner as some sort of stump-toothed, redneck, crypto-Nazi berserker just waiting for a cue from talk radio to go on a rampage. Typical, right? Well, the most effective counter has been a preemptive defamation. Liberals are all craven cowards whose fight-or-flight response can be better described as “flight-or-shite.” We ridicule their masculinity, we question their competence, we let the world know we aren’t dealing with worthy opponents, but contemptible vermin. If you pick your battles wisely, you can be seen as the guy who managed to shut up that annoying self-appointed political correctness officer. And every successful revolution spun itself as defenders of the people. Because we’re not conservatives; there’s nothing to conserve. We’re traditionalist in our values, but in terms of tactics, we must be velvet revolutionaries.

    further reading:

    http://www.anonymousconservative.com/blog/?p=354

    http://eradica.wordpress.com/2012/06/01/five-fingered-fist-of-liberalism/

    • As a former nihilist, I consider ridicule my expertise. It is very difficult to keep it up all the time. I get ground down by it. My “friends” list on Facebook is dwindling because I have attacked so many people so viciously. Running out of people to yell at! I am good at insulting people, especially academics and authority figures. I am very good at getting liberals to reveal their inner violent tyrant (every smug non-violent bleeding heart liberal hides behind guys with guns and badges) but this act can get spiritually… oppressive. I just want to love my country, my countrymen, my extended family, my neighbors, and those new people I meet out there. I just want to live my life and work and raise my kids without having to spend all this energy ridiculing people all the time. Although my harsh judgments & stereotypes about people are usually right, sometimes I am wrong and it hurts me to realize that I was so caught up. I would rather take up arms and get it over with than live a life sounding like Archie Bunker more and more at 32. I want to be a man of action, not words- especially emotional, bitter, ugly, words.

      What about you?

      • “But begin to effectively shame and oppress liberals, and you’re well on your way to a cleaner, less degenerate immediate environment.”

        Ahh, I agree. Just like Earl, my FB is full of leftist vermin and at first I used to tolerate such ridiculous shit, but no longer. Enough is enough. Now, if I see pro-homo or pro-liberal statements, I just attack.

      • Ridicule is funny. It’s inherently charismatic as well. Being funny and humorous shouldn’t be a drain. Be a traditionalist John Stewart. Not a butthurt curmudgeon. I find real life to be an easier venue than the internet; tone of voice is everything in ridicule. So do it in real life, not facebook.

        As for being men of action: yes. One thing I’m very grateful for is that, provided this isn’t the eschaton, we have the opportunity to subvert and undermine and generally leave a trail of destruction in our wake. We can be savage Norsemen to the establishment Cathedral. We can mock liberalism and defile their relics. Then after we’re done goring their sacred cows for a while, we get a turn at building civilization. We have a better track record with that sort of thing, so I’m optimistic.

  3. We should be like termites in Satan’s house, undermining the shabby foundations of liberalism quietly, earnestly, patiently. We cannot take to an open field of battle, but must fight a “fourth generation war”, as you might call it.

    Lights: ridicule trumps reason. However, violence trumps ridicule, so be careful.

    • I don’t follow, Op. Are you saying that it’s easy to ratchet up to violence as a first resort? Or that our use of ridicule can engender a violent backlash?

  4. I hope you don’t mind if I use this as an opportunity to plug my latest attempt to resist and oppose liberalism – ActBiblically.org. Note that there is a link to a meetup in El Paso where I live. I think local action is more effective than anything on the internet. I plan to work hard locally to promote my Act Biblically meetup. I would appreciate any feedback on my project.

  5. Oh good heavens “We must now go Solzhenitsyn.” Really. With nearly half the country not agreeing? GENUG! I do think if Solzhenitsyn had any form of Second Amendment rights for instance he would not have gone Solzhenitsyn. They don’t intend to take us to the Gulag anyway, that’s too scary for them – those tactics have a way of catching up too many of THEM. We have a tyranny already, the comparatively mild tyranny will simply continue to apply more of the same. Probably the next act of tyranny will be to nationalize our 401Ks for instance. This is still a mild tyranny by historical standards. Finally this tyranny is largely extant on government subsidies. Well that money…will..run out. It actually has and the government finances it’s fiscal madness with fiat money created by the Trillions out of thin air.

    When most of your friends are paid to be, thin air is a thin reed indeed.

    There’s more to consider in a conflict than losing a battle – mainly the condition of the Tyrant. So consider them with an enemies eyes: their finances are bankrupt and parlous, they are sclerotic and dysfunctional, they live in a self referential fantasy world, and their money is ruined. This government’s condition is at least as shaky economically as the USSR at the end. The USSR did not at any time rest on economics. It rested on force and terror. As to that happening in the United States…the matter of armed repression..still largely hypothetical but as their dream collapses quite possible..

    Force: We are an armed citizenry with as many guns as population.

    * Their military and police come largely from our stock, and are sympathetic to citizens, not criminals, bums, degenerates, welfare recipients who are of course important Left wing constituients.

    * The Military will balk at any attempt to impose overt tyranny, and would not look kindly on putting down the citizens in a political dispute, even if it was violent.

    * The police to put it mildly don’t like Liberals crime policies, are aware more than most of us the system is corrupt and dysfunctional, and have contempt for the politicians. Not to mention the contempt they hold community organizers in.

    * American Law Enforcement – and we are blessed in this – like to see themselves as protectors of the community, and wouldn’t like to see themselves as it’s oppressors.

    There remains…

    * The character of the Progressive Left shall we say is not particularly active, inclined to war or police work, or hard life or work in general. In short they are not brave. They rely on others to do any and all dirty work, including any repression.

    You should also look in the mirror and whether you consider yourself a free American or a Christian, or a defender of tradition and be ashamed.

    You would quit the field before this ragged shambling horde of swishes, cowards, street trash who sell their vote, relatively few dangerous thugs whose capacity to wreak violence goes no further than their hood, all mercenaries bought and paid for by a bankrupt, weak and utterly dysfunctional government led by a narcisstic child who takes a flight to Vegas when it gets nasty. You’re going to retreat from that?

    Well that would make you what was always going to be enslaved, and was never going to be free. That may be your choice. But I should hate to explain this retirement to my posterity.

    Quit whining Augustine and buck up. And FIGHT. These aren’t the Vandals – Unitarians with Viking Swords – they’re a bunch of paid for bums led by the liver spotted parents of Occupy Wall Street. It is one thing to run from Heath Ledgers Joker. It’s another to run from these jokers.

    • All that you say hinges on your hope that it will all collapse, and soon enough. Bretton Woods 3 (proverbially speaking) could throw a monkey wrench in your little theory. They will probably find a way to make it all go shambling on. The global fiscal environment has been nothing but chicanery for… how long now? You think the chicanery will fail, like a bad magic act, and the curtain will slip? Let’s hope you’re right.

      • “All that you say hinges on your hope that it will all collapse”. NO. I’m estimating the situation as it is..or how I see it. There’s no all I hinge hope on …read again. I did indeed point out their fiscal situation.

    • Their military and police come largely from our stock, and are sympathetic to citizens, not criminals, bums, degenerates, welfare recipients who are of course important Left wing constituients.

      American Law Enforcement – and we are blessed in this – like to see themselves as protectors of the community, and wouldn’t like to see themselves as it’s oppressors.

      The military and police are pro-racist, pro-Nazi, pro-extremist, pro-abortion-clinic-bomber, etc? Why do you think this? They, not we, get to decide how we will be characterized in any future conflict. We will be characterized as completely evil, and the military and police will cut us down and pat themselves on the back for doing it. “See themselves” is an apt phrase.

      We have underestimated these people with consistency. They don’t lie down. They are not weak. They are not cowardly. They are ruthless, effective warriors. Especially ruthless. Cromwell won. Lincoln won. Lenin won. Wilson won. Etc. As individuals, they are a bunch of douches, but they are very good at getting real men to do their dirty work for them. And there is no limit to how dirty they are willing to be. Barney Frank would be very happy to (order someone else to) drop white phosphorus on your aged mother. In a pinch, he might even be willing to fire up his playstation to drive the drone to do it himself.

      • Maybe it’s because I began my adulthood as a lefty listening to Arlo Guthrie singing labor union songs about copper-boss thugmen (or the “po-lice”), and maybe I’ve read a little too much from Will Grigg, but I too have a hard time believing that the police and the army will be on our side if and when push comes to shove.

        There are, unfortunately, too many people in this world who are attracted to the opportunity to smack people down and who get off on all the cool techno-weapons and other gear the powers-that-be are buying for the guys and gals in uniform. (Grigg calls those uniforms “government-issued costumes”.)

        Look, for example, at how the military has been used in
        South America to oppress the population. Those soldiers and policemen came from the people too, but they knew which side their bread was buttered on. (And like I said, many of them *enjoyed* it.)

        You can find similar examples in both leftist and rightist regimes.

        If what Grigg reports is correct, our police don’t see themselves as servants and protectors of the people. They see themselves as superior to the “mundanes”. They’re not out to serve and protect *us*, they’re out to serve and protect society’s masters. As long as the masters don’t subject them to Caligula-like insults, and as long as the money and the goodies and the prestige keep coming, I don’t expect that to change.

      • I apologize for my intemperate remarks. I did not mean to insinuate that every member of the police or armed forces is some kind of sadist.

        Many of them, like those soldiers in South America, simply have no better way to make a living. In the hard times that are coming, many of ours will find it just as hard to risk their livelihood by disobeying orders. Orders, mind you, that will come from the apparatchiks who have been filling all the management positions, and who have no scruples against punishing subordinates who don’t do as they’re told.

        Also, as Bill points out, the apparatchiks will have long since implemented indoctrination programs that will frame the resistance as evil, dangerous radicals. These programs are already well underway, as anyone can see. So even those police and soldiers who have their doubts will still go along, because they will see themselves as battling a threat to society. Their loyalty will be to stability (aka “law and order”), and also to the rules, even if they have their private doubts about the merits of some of those rules.

  6. A conservative Christian should be one whose life is oriented towards the good, true, beautiful permanent things. He cultivates alertness to them, for example by actively nourishing himself on works of the Christian imagination. He is thankful for his existence as a human being redeemed by Jesus Christ. If God be for us, who can be against us?

    Allow me once again to recommend Gaines’s Evening in the Palace of Reason:

    This is a book for every Orthospherean. Read it and read the words for your Bach cantatas, and your inner compass will tend to become corrected.

  7. As you orient yourself thus, you will have opportunities to connect with other people, and perhaps by sharing your joy in these things, to stir them in good ways. We are not going to win very many people by beating down false arguments, but we may be able to stir people as we draw their attention to sound works of musical and literary art. I think conservatives and reactionaries are often apt to over-value polemics. There is a place for polemics and apologetics, but often this place is one that people arrive at only after they are already starting to reorient inside thanks to changes in imagination. And the best works of imagination, brothers and sisters, are ours, not theirs.

    • I would second this. My first inkling of the truth came to me in the beauty of sacred music, that bespoke it, and that I could not gainsay, nor therefore resist. I discovered the philosophical basis for traditionalism because I wanted to understand the beauty and nobility of traditional social forms.

    • I would third this. My first inkling of the truth came to me when I was looking at the icons of a Catholic girl’s family. Ironically, I was trying to sleep with the girl in question. They weren’t good Catholics, probably nominal, but the beauty of the icons made me think and pursue the Truth.

    • My experience was pretty different from this. I watched a street preacher being heckled. That was when it started. I looked at pictures online of aborted fetuses. That was when I knew I had been wrong my whole life.

      Then, it was like a quote I later discovered in Chesterton: “We do not really want a religion that is right where we are right. What we want is a religion that is right where we are wrong.” I looked around for who was right where I was wrong. Well, for a little while I was (almost) the only pro-life atheist on earth.

      I can’t imagine having come to the Faith without the kind of noisy apologetic efforts you are talking about.

  8. Gee Bill. I don’t think LE and the military are..any of those things. Nor however are they fools and pawns. Up to a point yes, remember NO would be rolling the Iron Dice. I can link if you’d listen [you won’t] and I can base it off years of experience. tool over to Second City Cop for a start. You dropped some names…Cromwell . Lincoln . Lenin . Wilson . Now tell me where you see such men? The first two fought personally BTW, the second did not seek conflict, the 4th reluctantly. Tell me how I was hallucinating the 13 plus years I served, and why the NYT op-ed on let’s Ezra Klein the Constitution cuz it’s old and stuff has them figuratively up in arms.

    Tell me I’m wrong in my estimate of the foe.

    Ask yourself why you give up so easy. All the men you name above were opposed. What’s your problem?

    • A fighting soldier will obey the commands of his immediate superior… likely even if that superior tells him to shoot the general standing right there. It is no accident that coup leaders tend to come from the lower commissioned ranks. Generals are politicians. And pencil pushers and logistics folks are pretty much on a welfare program. To its credit, the US military resisted the Blue Empire for at least as long as could be expected, but, alas, even there the march of liberalism is now quite strong.

      Still among those who actually pull triggers and get shot at, the dying Red Empire is well represented. Many would very much be on the side of traditionalists, and the vast majority would be easily swayed, by a true leader of men.

      Cromwell, Lincoln, Lenin, Wilson… served the liberal empire, each in his own unique, and uniquely damaging, way. The only reason to look for men like that is to preemptively assassinate them.

    • Gee Bill. I don’t think LE and the military are..any of those things. Nor however are they fools and pawns. Up to a point yes, remember NO would be rolling the Iron Dice.

      Iron Dice I got. What’s NO?

      If some of us racist, pro-rape, violent, Christian fundamentalist terrorists take over, say, Kansas, in order to usher in a new Dark Ages, a repeat performance of the Holocaust, and witch burnings, the military is going to balk at an order to take it back? Seriously? The US military? The Whiskey Rebellion, Civil War, Alabama National Guard military? That one?

      I can link if you’d listen [you won’t]

      I’ll listen.

      Tell me I’m wrong in my estimate of the foe.

      I just did that. They are bad people, I agree. They are not going away without a fight. The historical record strongly suggests that they will win. That’s what they have done each previous time it has come to a fight. From the Pilgrimage of Grace forward, we have lost essentially every armed conflict with the bad guys. There have been a very few, temporary victories. You are the one arguing that something new and extraordinary is going to happen. Why do you think it is going to happen?

      I also think you are greatly overestimating the level of support remaining for the good guys. Try this thought experiment. What is the absolute minimal reform which might possibly set things on the road to being right again? I would say restricting the franchise to property-owning fathers, and undoing basically every Supreme Court decision (I mean the ones non-lawyers have heard of) since the turn of the 20th C. I doubt that this would be enough, but that’s the least radical reform I can imagine turning things around. You see the problem? Could we get 5% of the US population to endorse this?

      You’re sure that LE and the military would balk? How would it play out? Kansas does what I say above. It bars women, non-fathers, and, given the way wealth and family structure are distributed by race, the vast majority of blacks from voting. It re-introduces all the stuff the SC says it can’t do. Religious instruction in public schools, bans on pornography, bans on abortion, bans on contraception, etc. At some point, a federal court is going to issue an order. Kansas will defy it. Federal Marshals will show up to arrest the governor (or attorney general or whomever). The Kansas Natl Guard will be nationalized and ordered to go help. Instead, it goes to stop the Marshals (?). The President tells, I dunno, a couple of Marine divisions to go get the governor. And . . . what? They say, no? Or, they go, and a bunch of middle aged guys with SKS rifles show up to stop them. Now, they say no?

      The bad guys don’t need any great leaders to make this go their way. Just everybody doing more or less what they do. Military routinely following orders. Press and every other cultural institution demonizing the evil right wingers. Etc.

      • I was unaware Kansas had barred the franchise? I’ll research.

        My comments are below. Remember something else: when the USSR told the Poles to step on Solidarity, 15/16 Generals said no. I am also reliably informed the soldiers and police often refused to shoot the protestors and criminals had to be released from prison.

        You underestimate your fellow citizens and overestimate the powers of treason.

        And of course the Poles weren’t armed.

        As far as the Pilgrimage of grace and the link from Cromwell to now: you forget something very important: they have utterly rejected God and not replaced him with an actual religion. That’s no small loss for a ruling class. They have no grace or concept of whom to ask it from. Nor Honor or sense of duty beyond themselves. Nor any idea of how to wield power judiciously or with skill. Even for evil. They’re empty inside. Was it Mencius who noticed they have whores eyes…dead eyes?

        The march of the Puritans ended with 68. These are ghosts of yesterdays armies who’ve lost their God, lost their way, and gone quite mad. The chain from Cromwell has been broken. They cannot reforge it.

        While progressivism may have all the characteristics of a State religion it is critical to note IT ISN’T A RELIGION, nor can it properly fulfill the functions of one. It’s just no substitute. I’m quite certain they’ve noticed the hole in their plan. You might recall the Chinese certainly took recent notice of the importance of Christianity to America and the West’s success.

        In closing yes they can be beaten.

      • [from below comments] I have served in the military with people who are or continue to be police, firefighters, EMTs, corrections officers. All face hardship and death, injury, seeing the worst of man. Frankly many of them could interchange those vocations at will **. Many are following in family footsteps as will the other family members. All share in common the goal of protection. And all those in the military would take terrible offense at the idea they serve power and not the Constitution. All are quite old fashioned on the concept of sacred oaths. And that’s what the oath is sworn to defend.

        This is no resource or succor for tyrants.

      • Are you going to answer? What is a plausible scenario in which the good guys win by fighting? People I have heard talk the way you are talking usually have some fantasy about USG up and ordering cops and soldiers to do some large-scale atrocity. It won’t go down like that, at least not soon. They don’t need to do stuff like that. They are sitting on a lead, not trying to come from behind. Maybe you have a non-fantasy scenario in mind, but what is it?

        The stuff you are saying about our evil elite has a significant amount of truth in it, but I don’t think it has the implications you seem to. They are increasingly cutting themselves off from reality and becoming ever more crazy, at least in their rhetoric. The elite is composed of some fraction of utter cynics who don’t believe the crazy and some fraction of naive/stupid goofs who do (hard to say what the fractions are). They are heading for a fall. But that doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to fight them.

  9. Since they’re in no hurry to build the Gulag perhaps you could oblige them further by building it yourselves in advance. Listen if you give up this easy you are justly doomed to slavery. It’s also just to ask you stop whining about it. perhaps you could learn to roll your eyes and engage in tardive babble..shuffling, that sort of thing. Don’t show up for work..so on…

  10. Denethori. Normally strawmen are invented to attack, this strawman is confected to justify immediate surrender. The US Military is not the South American Military, or in it just for a check, and is certainly not staffed by yes men who will follow instructions no matter what. Nor are the American police.

    For instance the NYTs proposed innovation that we “Get Rid Of” the Constitution to which we swore an oath was pretty much universally panned, putting it mildly.

    Why Mr “OP” I am a follower and servant of them. They are worthy of it.

    NO means what it says =The Iron Dice.

    Someone mentioned they would listen, here’s what at least some of what actual military and cops have to say..you will of course encounter a wide body of opinion.

    http://www.mudvillegazette.com/milblogs/

    http://secondcitycop.blogspot.com/

    https://www.facebook.com/USMCHELLHOUNDS?fref=ts

    [that’s uncle sams misguided children. note there are more than one. You should see this quote at top -“The Marines I have seen around the world have the cleanest bodies, the filthiest minds, the highest morale, and the lowest morals of any group of animals”]

    http://www.blackfive.net/

    Get out of the echo chamber and look around before you pass judgment. Denethor shrieked despair when the Horde was before the gates. Augustine desparied as the Vandals besieged Hippo. You’re despairing and collapsing in tears in the faculty lounge. You conflate losing arguments or this or that vote with the fall of civilization. Well contend for it!

    • Perhaps you’re right, Brendan. I certainly hope so.

      As for my strawman, please note that I did acknowledge the materials from which he was made. Anyone who wants to suggest that the rank-and-file police are on our side needs, I think, to address the kind of things Will Grigg descibes — along with the historical role the police have played in suppressing resistance to the interests of the moneyed classes.

  11. First the actual military. I am going to introduce what I will call the Class 41 Fallacy – Class 41 is the most recent graduates of Newark NJ Firefighters. Nearly all combat veterans of the last decade. While they were observed training someone remarked “they look like Newark Thugs.” NO. Pray you never meet the real thing. And no they didn’t do it for a check or lack of options. That’s a Liberal Myth. Actually the strongest trend in our volunteer force is – Family. To the point some are beginning to call it the Family Business. **That’s a pretty strong application of Tradition, Duty and Service to something Higher than ME right there Gentlemen.** I point this out because I fear that in seeing the color of skin you just indeed might be overlooking character. There’s no dysfunction found in Newark not found now in London. God Help us perhaps less. I digress. Do not judge them by what they SAY – which is precious little indeed. Judge by Deeds.

    Here’s our military now. This is typical based on my experience, and I served with one of the graduates. This is the latest class of Firefighters from Newark. 28/31 are veterans of the last decade of war. Really get out and see these young people and understand *there is* a future for Honor and duty.

    http://www.nj.com/essex/index.ssf/2012/10/a_veteran_class_of_firefighter.html

  12. Now to the *American* police. And nearly uniquely American. I will speak what I have observed of character. I was never a cop. But understand half my service is National Guard which has a large number of various types of Law Enforcement. This includes wartime service in Iraq. War will show you who you are and who is really around you for good and ill. Their primary motivation is *Protection*. If you were to offer a typical American policeman a bribe *you’d be making a serious mistake*. If however you ask for help you have a friend. [This is NOT true in other countries]. These are good men and very often *quietly* godly. As often are service members. You see when you are faced with mortality and the dark side of man – you might curse God. But you WON’T have a detached and snide ironic view of the eternal. NOPE. You might have an armed version of Christopher Hitchens – less snide more direct. But not detached. Our police are tasked and view their primary vocation to be protection, maintenance of order and the mitigation of evil. I would hazard upholding the Law comes after those goals. They are indeed caught in the snare our Laws have become – no one is more aware of this than they. Understand a sense of duty can indeed be a tool of the unscrupulous to manipulate the honorable. They did swear to uphold the Law. However when you hear them express their sentiments they are generally NOT in favor of gun control or a disarmed citizenry. Nor do they like as a police chief put it to me that illegals have more rights than citizens. You must know some constable somewhere. Do they sound like the monsters some purport to fear?

    I will grant this caveat: the police could be tricked for a time into repression. But these are not the type of men for this to sit with for any time.

    These policemen come from our communities. How much stomach do you think they have or desire to uphold a tyranny – if that’s what it comes to – over their neighbors?

    • Our police are tasked and view their primary vocation to be protection, maintenance of order and the mitigation of evil.

      So what? Cromwell’s soldiers thought they were doing good. Lincoln’s soldiers feared being shot if they didn’t do as they were told. Lee’s thought they were doing good. Having your cops and soldiers believe they are the good guys is, ceteris paribus, useful. It’s a force multiplier. But it’s not anything like the only important thing. And it sure isn’t any kind of guarantee against atrocities.

      Maybe it would be easier to see via a more recent US example? Lon Horiuchi is famous as the government’s trigger man at Ruby Ridge, murdering Vicki Weaver and attempting to murder two others. He is less famous as the probable spark which set off the massacre at Waco. Here is a capsule bio of him from Wikipedia:

      Horiuchi, the son of a U.S. Army officer, attended West Point graduating in 1976. He served as an infantry officer in the U.S. Army. Afterwards he joined the FBI, and by 1999 had been an FBI agent for at least 15 years.

      Do you think Lon Horiuchi thinks of himself as an agent of murderous repression, or do you think Lon Horiuchi thinks of himself as an honorable man doing his duty, fighting the bad guys to keep us all safe from Nazis and dangerous religious nuts? How about his colleagues on the FBI’s Hostage Rescue Team, most of whom have a background like his? Do they think of him and themselves as assassins or as the heroic thin blue line?

      I will grant this caveat: the police could be tricked for a time into repression. But these are not the type of men for this to sit with for any time.

      So, Horiuchi has repented? It’s been a while, now.

      • Bill – answering: I am not proposing an uprising. I just think there would be one if – or I daresay when – they tempt an outrage too far. And in that scenario – hardly conjured by me – their chances range from bad to suck.

        And again it doesn’t help to be bankrupt in everything not just money.

        Remember I began by answering those who are invoking Solzehnitzn, samzidat, images of the Gulag. Where we are…not. I also was upbraiding those advocating despair and surrender, silent resistance. There is no need for silence if you aren’t facing draconian consequences for speaking, and we are not. So by all means contend. Fear not the gulag if it’s not built. Fear not the lions den when they’re not penning any lions. Nor are they the type who could keep a lion tame for long.

        It is not proposed here and in other venues to end further resistance to Hitler. It is proposed to end further resistance to Weimar. My dear Sirs…

        You mentioned a couple of incidents in the 90s. Yes. And then they retreated did they not? Having stirred the hornets nest a bit and getting the predictable result they withdrew.

        [as an aside I was reliably informed a few years ago that man LH felt terrible about RR].

        Now with a eternal adolescent at the helm surrounded by his legion of callow children – that some propose we utterly capitulate to without any further contention or delay – they may go too far again. The problem with being supremely cocky and taking everything to crisis as policy is one day you’ll have a crisis too far…

        Frankly their continued insults and taunts as they play with the stick again remind me off…nothing in History that happened….but the best I can do is imagine a world where the cast of Glee confounds itself with the Confederacy and begins to cane members of Congress. The Confederates they are not..nor in such a contest would our odds be as long as the Gentlemen of the South.

        And I stand by my estimates of the situation as regards our enemies, our military, our police. Nor do I see our people as pervasively corrupt. Misled and on wrong paths no doubt. Our elites and our government are the Great questions of our time, and our challenge.

  13. In closing on character: I have served in the military with people who are or continue to be police, firefighters, EMTs, corrections officers. All face hardship and death, injury, seeing the worst of man. Frankly many of them could interchange those vocations at will **. Many are following in family footsteps as will the other family members. All share in common the goal of protection. And all those in the military would take terrible offense at the idea they serve power and not the Constitution. All are quite old fashioned on the concept of sacred oaths. And that’s what the oath is sworn to defend.

    This is no resource or succor for tyrants.

  14. What specific actions do you suggest taking in order to create a new order? I’m all for resisting and not taking up ways with the world, but we have to readily admit that the world provides limitations on what we realistically can and cannot do.

    • The main thrust of my essay is that we don’t know yet exactly what we must do, but we must begin by being certain that the liberal order is wrong, and articulating what sort of order we want. The next step is forming organizations, or at least local groups of like-minded allies, who will think and act contra liberalism.

  15. Let me chip in, belatedly, in the discussion between Brendan Doran and Bill. The question of whether, ultimately, the American military and security forces would or would not balk at an “outrage too far”, as Brendan Doran put it, is irrelevant.

    Once the government gives the “outrage too far” order, it thereby puts itself outside the constitution. Only the military and the security forces would have the necessary force and organization to restrain a government turned lawless. However, for the military to disobey the civilian leadership also puts it outside the constitution, and therefore also implicates it in lawlessness. The country is lost no matter who wins this power match. By ordering and winning, the government turns into a dictatorship; by disobeying and winning, the military turns dictator. If it should happen that, per Doran’s scenario, the military is led by wise and patriotic men, they might well try to restore the previous constitution, but that would be the inauguration of a new order, not the maintenance or the restoration of the previous one. And it would be a very difficult work, for had the previous order been in good shape, it would not have disintegrated. Sulla ultimately failed.

    Let me illustrate this with the historical experience of my own country, Brazil, and our military coup of March 1964. The then President, Joao Goulart, democratically elected, was an incompetent hack who wanted to implement major leftist reforms, but had no majority in Congress to get them approved. He tried workarounds, but this didn’t work, as he was straitjacketed by the Constitution. He then allied with the Communists and announced in a major speech that he would implement his reforms by executive decree – even though the Constitution did not give him this power – and that they would be made with or without Congress. The announcement was necessary because he expected the masses to rise in support of him and cow the opposition into submission.

    Then the military intervened, exactly because the president’s orders had put him outside the constitution. A caretaker government was formed, led by as patriotic and professional military man as you could want, General Castello Branco, who had impeccable pro-democracy credentials, and had fought in the Italian Front in WWII as a colonel in the Brazilian Expeditionary Force (a 25,000-men division that was part of the American IV Corps). Ironically, a few years earlier he had warned against the trend towards military coups in South America… Castello Branco did not even want to rule, and only took charge because the civilian politicians could not agree on which of them should be provisional president. His assumption was approved by Congress to provide a veneer of legitimacy. The proclaimed aim was to restore democracy by the next scheduled elections, due in 1966. But the actual restoration had to wait until 1985, for Castello Branco lost the power match inside the military to people who thought the civilians available were too incompetent and would just repeat Joao Goulart’s experience. (And they may well have been right…)

    I mention this example because it’s the most well known to me. There are many others just as useful, such as Juan Perón’s rule in Argentina and his downfall, by military coup, in 1955, or Salvador Allende and Pinochet’s 1973 coup, in much the same dynamic as happened in Brazil in 1964.

    I hope these examples are more enlightening than sleep-inducing.

    PS 1: CorkyAgain’s quip a about “how the military has been used in South America to oppress the population” is ridiculous as a generalization. I might as well generalize saying that the military spared many countries from experiencing Stalinism and thereby saved millions of lives. Both generalizations would be incomplete.

    PS 2. These articles may be of interest:

    http://www.carlisle.army.mil/usawc/parameters/Articles/2010winter/Dunlap_Jr.pdf

    http://harpers.org/archive/2006/04/american-coup-detat/

    • Doran [I] didn’t put forward a Sulla Scenario. I pointed out our military and police are not what other people posit they are. Nor would they be likely to follow a Sulla. Our military and police indeed exemplars of American exceptionalism. I also pointed out that the Gulag is where we are…not. So enough pre-emptive Count Tolstoy – passive disobedience et al. And you are quite wrong about your order of battle estimate – only the military and police count. The people certainly wish to be counted and are taking steps to shall we say ensure their continued franchise.

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