My current brace of columns includes one at Crisis Magazine about the trend away from concrete loyalties and objective principles toward radical subjectivity and a combination of money and bureaucracy as the basis for what’s still called public life. The other one, at Catholic World Report, makes the obvious point that the result is unlivable and we should all go out and refound Christendom.
I have more comments on subsidiarity at Catholic World Report. Basically, I say that the concept is incomprehensible in a liberal technocracy, and to promote it we have to insist in principle on the autonomy of the family and the Church, and act in ways that make its value evident. I also have something about the sad state of internet discussion up at Crisis Magazine. The conclusion: preach the word in season and out of season even if people are morons. You never know who might be reading.
I argue here that most men should attempt to marry, for several basic reasons. First, marriage is necessary for the survival of a people. Second, men (and women) need to be a part of a good order if they are to live well and a good social order includes marriage. And three, men were designed for leadership, as they are more attuned to the practical application of truth and justice, and are more able to impose their will on a situation, than women are.
This essay does not refer much to Christianity. Of course, all men and women should be Christians. But that is a subject for other essays.
Throughout our Western Civilization there is a crisis of marriage. Not enough marriages occur. Homosexual pseudo-marriage is causing (and reflecting) extreme moral confusion and devaluing real marriage. Many people marry later in life than is healthy for them and for their children. Many fewer babies are born per woman (married or not) than is healthy for our nation. And many children are no longer raised properly, that is, with a father to provide masculine order and authority and a mother at home most of the time to supervise the children.
So what can be done to make things better? And who’s at fault?
The basic answer to the less important question, the second question, is this. In the immediate sense, and with exceptions acknowledged, it’s more the fault of women than of men. Men, by nature, are always seeking relationships with women, but women do not always seek relationships with men. Therefore womankind is always the ultimate factor determining whether relationship occurs.
But in a broader sense, marriage is in crisis because our entire society is in crisis. America is not a basically healthy nation in which, for some mysterious reason, marriage is failing. No, American society is fundamentally and radically disordered, and one manifestation of this disorder is that marriage is generally no longer done correctly, or even adequately. The proper way to do marriage is rarely taught, and when it is, the teaching is often rejected. Continue reading
I’m convinced that non-conservatives have the following view of the basic message of conservatism. [Here, “conservative” denotes the largest tribe to which we traditionalists can with any validity be said to belong]:
The Basic Conservative Message, as seen by Non-Conservatives:
[Intoned in a solemn, menacing voice.]
“We are Conservatives!
You must obey our Rules!
If you do not obey, you are Sinners!
We are Conservatives!”
In other words, they think we’ll hate them unless they’re just like us. Continue reading
[Continuing my occasional series of reposts of articles published at the old Intellectual Conservative, which fell victim to evil leftist hackers.]
Western Civilization is under the rule of the Left, and persons formally accused of “intolerance” (impiety towards liberalism) face serious persecution if convicted. Indeed, even the accusation can bring significant hardship. What can we do to defend ourselves against the Leftist Gestapo?
By way of illustration, consider the following scenario:
Liberal Commissar (LC) We have a complaint from a person who shall remain anonymous that, in his or her presence, you said things intolerant of [insert one of the following: homosexuals, “undocumented” persons, nonwhites, women, non-Christians, et al.]
Non-Liberal Person (NLP) Did I?
LC: You must take these proceedings seriously! It is alleged that you said [insert nonliberal, “intolerant” expression.] Did you say that?
NLP: I may have said something like that. Continue reading
Much of this post will be old news for reactionaries, but it bears occasional reiteration. The tl;dr is as follows: It is a matter of divine revelation, and therefore binding on Christians to believe, that the rule of law was ordained by God and thus that political authority derives from his institution of the state as the minister of divine justice. This doesn’t rule out, for instance, belief that democracy or anything else is the best (because most prudent) arrangement for the governance of society; but it certainly rules out the belief that democracy-or-anything-else is a moral imperative and that the legitimacy of the state is altogether dependent on one such choice to the exclusion of all others. Continue reading
I’ve certainly had my disagreements with Dr. Charlton. For one thing, he refuses to accept the obvious solution, pointed out by myself, to the pseudo-problem of free will versus divine predestination.
[Executive summary: God’s predestination operates at a level that is forever beyond our ability to detect. So for literally all practical purposes, we do have free will. So stop worrying about how God is trying to violate your heavenly Constitutional Rights, and get on with your life. But also believe God’s word when it says that God predestines.]
And as for his enthusiasm for the pseudo-Christian heresy of Mormonism, fuggedaboudit!
But Dr. Charlton has one great strength as a traditionalist blogger that in my book more than overcomes his, um, weaknesses: He emphasizes the most fundamental issues in the culture war—or whatever you call it—in which we traditionalists find ourselves.
Bruce Charlton recognizes that the West’s basic problem is spiritual sickness, not a lack of clear thinking. What we need most is not more theoretical explanations of how the problem originated and developed, although these have their place. No, what the West needs most is repentance from liberalism, or whatever you choose to call the current World System. And therefore the traditionalist is doing his best service for the cause when he calls on men and women to repent of their liberalism, and when he calls on his fellow traditionalists to call for repentance.
Dr. Charlton also recognizes that the call for repentance is not made in isolation. He knows that we must give our fellow man reasons to repent, and a hope to which he can turn.
Pointing these out is what Dr. Charlton is best at, and what he is best at just happens to be what we need most. That’s why he’s one of the All Stars in the Traditionalist League, despite his occasional strikeouts.
Offered for you this anniversary of Roe v. Wade:
Even though large tracts of Europe and many old and famous States have fallen or may fall into the grip of the Gestapo and all the odious apparatus of Nazi rule, we shall not flag or fail. We shall go on to the end. We shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender, and if, which I do not for a moment believe, this island or a large part of it were subjugated and starving, then our Empire beyond the seas, armed and guarded by the British Fleet, would carry on the struggle, until, in God’s good time, the New World, with all its power and might, steps forth to the rescue and the liberation of the old.
- Winston Churchill, 4 June 1940
The New World of Churchill’s day is of course embroiled with the Old in the fight against Moloch. We look today for rescue, not from North America, but from Sabaoth. With such allies, how then dare we quaver? Deus vult!
I have a couple of pieces up at Catholic World Report and Crisis Magazine, the first on whether “natural” and “normal” make sense as standards, and the second on whether the Church will revert to type (because it has such a strongly marked essential form). I say that those are the basic issues in today’s battles, and that the answer to both questions is of course “yes.”
Or at least self-organizing communities. In support of the latter anti-technocratic cause I have a column on subsidiarity up at Catholic World Report, and also a two-part series about inclusiveness, that universal attack on the possibility of local self-organization, at Crisis Magazine (it can be read here and here). The latter basically gives a thumbnail sketch of the argument of my recent book.