Jewish questions

What to do about anti-semitism?  In another world, I might suggest a campaign of philo-semitic and anti-Christian messages, making criticism of Jews as a group off limits on peril of social ostracism, disemployment, and media defamation, and censorship.  In this world, however, we’ve already pushed far enough down those roads that going farther will likely give minuscule returns.  The people who aren’t convinced already won’t be won over by more of this.

I don’t claim that things would be better for the Jews if society were more relaxed about criticism or animosity toward them.  It could be that, given their prominence in so many fields and their distinct moral light that they feel obliged to shine unto us, what they have now is the best the diaspora can hope for.  At least, this should always be kept in mind when the impulse emerges to “do something”.

What is the proper Christian attitude toward our Elder Brothers?  Neither hatred nor pity, but admiration and a determination to emulate those who have proven to be our superiors.  For in our competition and cultural clashes with them, they have proven overwhelmingly our superiors in determination, courage, intelligence, and initiative.  How else could they have triumphed so thoroughly?  What’s more, while we Christians talk about the Benedict Option, the Orthodox Jews have made it work.  If our goal is to become the Jews of the modern world (both in the biblical sense of an exile people with a mission from God and–especially!–in the anti-semitic conspiracy sense of a lethally-intelligent force of subversion against the dominant culture), then we must study them and perhaps copy aspects of their organization and psychological profile.  I suspect that, when we set aside the “passive victims” and “soulless usurers” stereotypes, we will find that we can learn a great deal from this remarkable people.

I was watching Chariots of Fire again the other day.  God, how much better Anglo-Saxon culture was a hundred years ago!  Anyway, it’s striking that the Jew Harold Abrahams is about as assimilated and successful as one could hope for–the best-case scenario, really–and he’s still seething with resentment.  Being a minority just does that to you.  I feel the same way as a Christian in academia, even though I also cannot complain of ever having been concretely wronged.  But this resentment, this urge to prove oneself against the majority, can be extremely useful to a sufficiently talented minority.  I hope there are some Catholics coming through the pipeline, twenty years younger and much more talented than me, who are also filled with anger and insecurity.

We are the subversives now.  Attack!

9 Responses

  1. Egalitarianism is the poison pill. Any group that swallows it is doomed because it looses the will to discriminate in favor of its members. There is absolutely no point in belonging to a group that does not discriminate in favor of its members because the benefits on the outside are exactly the same as the benefits on the inside. The Jewish strategy for survival was discrimination in favor of member and encouragement of discrimination against members by the surrounding milieu. The inside was cozy and warm; the outside was cold and prowling with wolves (or at least that was what they believed).

    When the teaching “we are all God’s children” is divorced from the rest of traditional soteriology, its hard to see the point in being a Christian. Pope Francis seems to be telling us that there is no particular dignity in the Christian life, since every human being is pretty darned dignified. Whenever I hear a homily on “the infinite mercy of God” (which is pretty often), I wonder why I am subjecting myself to the tedium of that homily.

    What this comes down to is that for a social group to survive, it must make its members see exiting the group as a degradation, and this means the group must “look down” on non-members. It must say that they are relatively stupid, ugly, and gross. This doesn’t have to be vicious, but no group can survive with the doctrine that outsiders are just as good as insiders (if not, perhaps, a little better).

  2. On a concrete note, where would we younger folk (who have less experience, exposure to, and therefore guidance) go to study and copy those qualities you mention?

  3. What to do about anti-semitism? Absolutely nothing.

  4. This is about the most wrongheaded post I’ve seen Bonald do.

  5. Frank,

    It’s an interesting question. How does one become an optimal subversive? I’ve spent my life defending a dying order, so this would be to try to look at things from the other side.

    A warning. The intensity of the Jews has clearly been conducive to their success and their acquisition of power, but it is not clear that it has been conducive to their happiness.

    I would say that a subversive would have a prejudice toward disrupting the consensus, even in ways that aren’t immediately relevant to what we care about. Let the common man be disabused of his beliefs often enough, and he will begin to doubt that any of his knowledge is trustworthy.

    When Heisenberg recounted the early 20th century revolutions in physics, he related that Max Planck (a Christian) was temperamentally a very conservative man, who realized his work would upend physics and so looked carefully for any alternative before publishing. Albert Einstein (a Jew), on the other hand, was portrayed as temperamentally revolutionary, drawn to disruptive ideas. Both were great physicists, and neither Planck’s quantum theory nor Einstein’s relativity had any particular political implications. And yet, do we perhaps see differences in the characteristic intellectual attitude of the Christian and the Jew, one which made perfect sense in a largely-Christian early 20th century Europe? Now, the roles are reversed. Now Jewish egalitarianism and cosmopolitanism are the intellectual consensus, and anything that breaks the confidence of that consensus–even on some irrelevant matter of history or science or literary criticism–works effectively in our favor.

    I would think an effective subversive would look for weak targets. Where is the consensus taken for granted? Where are its defenders not intellectually or psychologically prepared for an attack?

    Of course, an effective subversive must realistically gauge his own strengths, and consider in what field he is able to do the most good, by which I mean the most damage. This requires painful honesty from us, perhaps more than it did from our Elder Brothers, since we are working from a standard deviation lower average IQ than them. I doubt this is as big a factor as many assume, though, because few high-profile subversives strike me as geniuses.

  6. I think it’s a mistake to look to secular Jewry as any sort of model for us goyim to emulate. Yes, secular Jews have been wildly successful at becoming a key part of the elite ruling-class coalition, but at what cost? They’ve abandoned their ancient faith (well, I suppose they abandoned that 2000 years ago, but let that pass…) and have only retained their culture in the most superficial sense. They intermarry at high rates and don’t replace themselves. They support abortion and sodomy not only for their enemies (which would of course still be wicked), but for themselves. Copying their strategy is a recipe for deep moral corruption and cultural suicide.

    The Orthodox Jews, on the other hand, might indeed have some features worth emulating.

    Anyway, it’s striking that the Jew Harold Abrahams is about as assimilated and successful as one could hope for–the best-case scenario, really–and he’s still seething with resentment.

    I wonder how much of this is true to life, and how much of it is (Jewish) Hollywood.

    I’ve read in various places that the Reform Jews of Germany deeply admired German culture and desired to integrate fully into it. See this comment, for example. See also The Body of Faith by Michael Wyschogrod.

    However, I grant your broader point that being a minority will inevitably breed resentment among at least some portion of that minority. See, again, Wyschogrod on this. Or see blacks from the 1940s: one often sees remarked that in that era, blacks admired white culture and sought to emulate it themselves. Yet no doubt there was still resentment among blacks toward whites. The perversity of our modern society is to exacerbate and intensify this resentment.

  7. Ian’s post brought to mind a passage from Léon Blum’s Souvenirs sur l’Affaire [Memoirs of the Affair] There was no need to specify which Affaire – for Blum and his contemporaries there could be only one:
    “The mass of Jews received with much circumspection and mistrust the beginnings of the campaign for revision. The dominant sentiment could be translated by a formula like this one: “This is something the Jews shouldn’t get mixed up in…” In this complex sentiment all elements weren’t of equal quality. To be sure, there was patriotism, and even a touchy patriotism, respect for the army, confidence in its chiefs, a repugnance for considering it partial or fallible. But there was also a kind of selfish and timorous prudence that could be qualified with words even more severe. The Jews didn’t want it believed that they were defending Dreyfus because he was a Jew. They didn’t want anyone imputing their attitude to a racial distinction or solidarity. Above all, they didn’t want, in going to the defence of another Jew, to furnish any fuel to the anti-Semitic passion that was running rampant with such great intensity. The arrest and condemnation had already harmed the Jews. It was absolutely necessary that the campaign for revision not compromise them any further. The Jews of the same age as Dreyfus, those who belonged to the same social stratum, who, like him, had passed difficult competitive exams, had been introduced into the officer cadre of the general staff or the most sought-after civilian administrative corps, were exasperated by the idea that a hostile prejudice would put a limit to their irreproachable careers. After having excommunicated the traitor they repudiated the bothersome zeal of his lawyers.”

  8. Did anyone ever repudiate the bothersome zeal of Leo Frank’s lawyers?

  9. Indeed, I’ve never seen Jews behave the way Blum describes.

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