FORWARD BASE B

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The Class Divide in the Alt Right

As the alt-right matures it can now be divided into working class and middle class wings.  Most of the arguments about strategy, methods, and optics since Charlottesville have at their root been different parts of society talking past each other.  The alt-right likes to talk about race, but too many of them seem to neglect class, which in some circumstances is even more important than race in a highly stratified America.  

The pre-existing White Nationalism 1.0 was a working class movement by its nature.  They were notorious for being abrasive purity-spirallers who don’t work well with others but those who made the transition to 2.0 have brought with them established organizational structures and are willing to show up in the real world.
At this point, when people are taking huge risks just stepping out into public, just showing up is the decisive factor, not wardrobe choice.  As a mercantile culture, we are still grappling with the new reality that action, revealed preference, and loyalty means more than words, presentation, or “brands.” 

From what I have seen, the most aggressively anti-social purity spirallers are already getting pushed out.  Over time I am seeing progressively fewer Nazi costumes.  As far as I can tell from pictures of Shelbyville, a few last people wearing nazi helmets are all that remains to be dealt with.  Counter-intuitively, complaints from the middle class wing of the alt-right actually grew louder after this event.  They were just as upset by a procession of people who looked like bikers and hunters dressed in black.  The reality is that working class groups won’t look nice and fuzzy, especially since the people who will actually show up tend to be the most angry and disaffected.  People who look determined and intimidating are not necessarily a bad thing.

The white polo shirt strategy has proven to be a stroke of genius that has created an image of the alt-right in the public consciousness.  More specifically, this has become the uniform of the middle class and SWPL alt-rightists.  They are trying to reach an audience where it pays best to be approachable, clean-cut, and well spoken.  While the black-clad bikers are gathering in rural white America, the polo preppy alt-right are targeting universities and urban areas.  

Rather than one conquering the other, these factions will end up pursuing their strategies in parallel.

I have seen a lot of criticism over the people showing up being “defective” but I think a lot of the armchair generals forget these are bands of dissidents.  The people who are comfortable and happy with their lives stay home, have other stuff to do, and have way too much to lose.  

The critics expect that the leaders of these groups can micromanage everyone like they are playing a real time strategy game and freak out about every negative thing the press seizes on.  In real life, these leaders are pirate captains elected into their roles by a motley crew of mutineers.

It takes a lot of guts and a disagreeable nature for anyone to actively go against what the rest of society is telling them to do, to reject false received wisdom, and seek out truth.  When you get a bunch of people like this in a room, you can’t expect any organization they form to run like a corporate department.  It’s only natural that it’s a bumpy ride and knees will get scraped. 

There has been a lot of public arguments between the leaders of these groups as they jockey for position and influence.  These are not crises but part of the natural process through which every organization is formed.  The clash of personalities has been a positive thing as the most able rise to the top and the worst narcissists, anti-social types, and the outright insane get weeded out.  

Every time there is a setback, loyalty gets tested and those who counter-signal too hard in the wrong way or against the wrong people fall by the wayside.  In these struggles, the class divide has been especially obvious. 

One leader screams at another about being a nazi larper only to be derided as an effete metrosexual in return.  One thing I have noticed though is over time certain rules of engagement have solidified and there are lines the leaders left standing no longer cross.  Now, even when disagreeing on tactics, there is almost always a disclaimer, of “I am glad this guy’s on our side but…”  

With pirate brawls now staying within this etiquette, the hierarchy steadily figures itself out.  Since the alt-right is the executive wing of the dissident sphere, those who come out on top will be those who can most effectively lead people to accomplish strategic goals in the field.

One of the biggest misunderstandings I see about the alt-right is from those who want it to become a mainstream political movement.  For some time yet, the niche of the alt-right is to be a minority of radicals who push the envelope and goad their enemies into over-extending.  By challenging the boundaries a few hundred alt-rightists can clear cultural space for millions more to drift slightly further towards them.

The alt-right is succeeding not by persuading everyone at once to their views but by changing the collective mood enough that alt-lite marketers are being forced to adapt or perish. 

Barely a year ago, a group with mostly gay men and women rose to become the alt-lite because their diversity points helped them get away with pushing ideas that no white straight guy could have presented to a large audience.  Someone like Milo was necessary and even his presence was enough to trigger a riot at Berkeley that was a huge turning point in exposing the establishment’s willingness to shut down free speech with violent thugs.

This excess lead directly to Antifa defeats at the battles of Huntington Beach and Berkeley forcing them to change their tactics ever since.  Few seem to reflect on the strategic significance of the fact that antifa has never again been able to attack independently, relying completely on sympathetic authorities to take their side. 

Now, it’s no longer necessary to be flamingly gay to popularize edgy political ideas.  Alt-lite figures like Milo are failing to make the transition and ex campus conservative types like James Allsup and Nick Fuentes are taking their place with far more discussion of ideas and less mindless sensationalism.  As the alt-right continues to keep on the pressure, it will change the culture—and the conventional politics lies downstream of culture.  

Observations Leading Up To Bannon Resignation

I will break with my usual habit of waiting for things to settle down a bit and indulge in some speculation.  At this point, things may not settle down for quite awhile.

Over the last few weeks I have observed that Trump has been spending progressively more time away from DC operating out of Bedminster and Trump Tower instead.

My suspicion is this behavior is entirely intentional, especially since it seems to have increased the moment General Kelly was moved to the White House.  I also noticed the media is attacking Trump over the length of his absences.  Trump has pointed to convenient renovations going on in the White House as justification, assuring the public that affairs of state are proceeding as usual.

Now, this behavior pattern has continued for weeks and could become the new normal.  Once one 17 day “work vacation” ends we shouldn’t be too surprised as another excuse is contrived with Trump only commuting to DC for several hours at a time as needed.  Meanwhile, it seems as though the leaks have abruptly stopped.

With this development, it is far less surprising to me that Bannon is leaving a White House that is no longer Trump’s center of operations.  Both men have found the DC swamp to be intractable and are now trying to gain leverage from outside it.

As far as I can tell, Trump tried his utmost to work with the Republican party establishment, backing their legislative initiatives to the hilt so they could accumulate some political capital for midterms.  Over time the tone of Trump’s tweets shifted from praising Paul Ryan’s leadership to criticizing Congress for not keeping promises they had made for years.

The final break happened when McCain cast the vote to get Obamacare repeal to the debate stage in the senate.  McCain then cast the vote to kill the debate as if to say “Just kidding!”  This public humiliation on the senate floor was finally too much.  The GOPe had openly admitted they would drag their feet indefinitely in order to wreck the president.  With midterms just over a year away, there was no more time to waste.

Trump brought in an outside consultant to sack his ambassador to the GOP starting a crazy chain of events that continues to cascade.
Furious that Trump was going off script even with McMaster there to “guide” him the beltway generals made sure Kelly got moved to chief of staff for good measure so the “pentagon boarding party” could keep the White House under lock and key.

Trump reacted by starting to contrive excuses to be away most of the time where he is likely establishing his own control structures with people he trusts. 

This time, when the president broke free of the generals to make an independent statement on Charlottesville, they had no immediate way of shutting him down.  Kelly was there, but as his despondent reaction revealed, he was powerless to intervene when unmoored from his place of power. 

With the GOPe’s strong condemnation of Trump’s statements and apparent support for tearing down historical monuments, all pretense of civility has been dropped.  They have hugely overextended with their unpopular positions and have created an opening for Trump to start displacing them in the upcoming midterms.

I am seriously wondering if I now see what may effectively be the emergence of two rival executive branches.  One run by the Pentagon, political establishment, and corporations in DC and another run from New York.  Perhaps we will get to see which is Rome and which is Avignon.

On Alt-Sphere Reactions to Charlottesville

I previously wrote about the elements of the alt-sphere and their natural roles.  In the aftermath of Charlottesville the reactions I’ve seen are somewhat unsurprising.  Fish in a coral reef do not understand how they fill a niche in a larger ecosystem.

Most prominently the alt-lite and much of the manosphere went into complete freakout mode as soon as the news emerged.  The airwaves were full of screeching about how “bad optics” and “naivety” have forever tarnished a new conservative civic-nationalist movement.

It made me smile when I found largely supportive reactions on sites like Breitbart and the_donald where lots of red-state normies hang out.  Fox news was blaring on about “white supremacists” but from what I was hearing, the commentariat wasn’t buying it.  The alt-lite was far less supportive than plenty of people who would never associate with alt-anything.

The alt-lite meltdown makes sense when we remember they are the dissident marketing and PR department.  Their mentality is all about building a brand and getting as large an audience as possible.  Their way of thinking is consistent with commercially-oriented American culture so they do not easily understand the mindset or objectives of the other dissidents.

Because alt-lightists have by far the largest mainstream exposure they see themselves as the true alt-movement and any other factions as lesser hangers-on.  The impact of Charlottesville infuriates them because it challenges their notion of being CEOs and shoves the truth in their face that they are in fact the far less glorious marketing department.  In truth, it is the soldier class of the alt-right that have the power of executive action and this is too much for them to bear right now.

The marketers will always be upset when there is a major change.  They like a predictable steady environment to build their followings and sell supplement pills.  Whenever the gravy train hits a bumpy section of track, they will be very unhappy about it.  But there’s nothing they can do either because their role is inherently passive.  The way to deal with the alt-lite is not to get mad or try to disavow them.  Just let them blow off their steam for a few days as they adjust their brands to market changes.

A civic nationalist on twitter with hundreds of thousands of followers might scream about how nazis have killed the movement in all caps but it’s the nature of who they are to walk back their heated statements just hours later as they sense a sea change rolling in.  3 days and 300 tweets later, nobody even remembers their initial rage.  They are best left on their own to do their job.  The alt-right soldiers through their actions have shown they effectively control the terms of engagement for the alt-lite.

The NRx reaction to Charlottesville has been a bit more complex.  I’ve gotten an overall sense of disapproval from them.  I think the class divide is very important here.  The stereotypical neo-reactionary in my mind’s eye is a gen-x computer programmer, IT guy, or engineer with a hint of baldness and 1-2 kids at home.  They are patient and cautious types who are reluctant to take bold risks.  They also have a tendency to look down on and counter-signal anything that seems remotely working class which many of the alt-right soldiers certainly are.  NRxers are typically comfortable financially and socially so they tend not to understand the urgency and anger felt by the other dissidents—or at least they don’t share it on a gut level.

A common NRx criticism I’ve seen of Charlottesville is that it has distracted from Damore’s firing from google over his politically incorrect memo.  They are correct to identify this event as being hugely important.  The first cracks are showing at the top tiers of the upper middle classes.  The NRx critics betray their SWPL affinities when they insist Damore “did it the right way” by being mild-mannered and going through the right channels to get his message out.

Faux-polite office politics only applies to the middle classes and above.  I see the google memo as one prong of a double-sided attack in the last week, one for each half of the social spectrum.  Therefore, I think it is to misunderstand the social situation to insist that Charlottesville and Googlememo compete with each other when they are in fact synergistic forces.

Even NRxers sometimes mock each other over “passivism” the idea that a group can come to power by becoming worthy to rule.  I think it’s a very legitimate concept in the right context.  History is full of revolutions that just made things even worse.  It’s hard to build something worthwhile and easy to complain and wreck things.  The neoreactionaries are on the right track in thinking about how to build a new social order as the present society crumbles.  They have their own important role—there’s no need for them to compete with the front line soldiers.

As for red-pilled progressives, I am not sure if we can continue to call them alt-leftists.  That namespace seems to have been appropriated by President Trump to refer to antifa gangsters.  Whatever we may call alt-leftists, the forces unleashed by Charlottesville and googlememo ensure that more SWPL men will be disillusioned and forced to choose sides as they realize the politically correct society will have no mercy on them no matter how they signal even as they continue to struggle with college debt and see their wages driven down by endless waves of H-1B Indians and Chinese.

Charlottesville Will Help Alt-Dissidents

Right now the dust is still settling and people are still wrought up and that is a good thing. There are lots of objections and black pills.  I will address some:

They had bad optics!
Nothing they could have done would have assuaged their opponents in the least.  This has been proven ad nauseum.  Internally discourage the worst excesses like Nazi flags, Wehrmacht helmets, or anything KKK, but otherwise let it go.  Charlottesville should be enough to bury thoughts of appeasement for good.

But they did x thing wrong!
In making a move from the internet into meatspace lots of stuff is going to go wrong.  Real life is sloppy.  Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face.  Remember how many panicked said it was the end of the world when Spencer said “Hail victory, hail Trump?”  That was a mistake, but everyone learned from it quickly and used the real-life feedback to adjust their strategy.
The important fact of Charlottesville is we saw an internet-based movement make a major transition into physical space.  That’s all that will matter.  Armchair generals gonna armchair.  They will always handwring over what could have been better while others go out and do things.

Trump Didn’t Help!
Mainstream political figures can’t overtly sympathize with those on extreme ends of the spectrum.  Do we ever see someone like Hillary Clinton praising the antifas?  Of course not!
Politicians deal with extremists in their coalition by pretending they don’t exist.  Trump refused to explicitly condemn the alt-rightists and that’s all that is needed, or can be reasonably expected from him.  Just imagine what the situation would be if Hillary Clinton were in power instead?  I don’t think the public emergence of the alt-right would have been politically possible.  Had it even been attempted, the leaders would have ended up in jail.  We’d have been busy fighting to prevent Chinese-style internet censorship and thereby losing even the ethereal platform we have.
A favorable leader gives the extremists a tacit nod that they will be unopposed as long as they don’t cross certain lines.   Then it’s up to the fringe political operators to achieve their objectives with the slack they’re given.

They Were Naive! What did they think would happen!
The whole point has been to play by the letter of the rules, one rule at a time so eventually an approach of moderation and appeasement becomes totally indefensible.  In this respect, Charlottesville is a brilliant success.  No one can ever again seriously argue that being more conciliatory is a reasonable approach.  This will ultimately force many fence-sitters squarely into the radical camp.

Now the Normies Hate Us! 
The vast majority of people go along to get along so long as their bread and butter isn’t immediately threatened.  They’d rather watch netflix, have a normal social life, and feed their families.  They can be thought of as neutrons.  Maybe they collectively have a weak gravitational pull but are otherwise inert.  The interaction of the charged particles is what matters.  As the course of the mainstream changes, those who go with the flow change with it.  So long as there is at least one significant demographic that is somewhat sympathetic towards the radicals, they’ll be fine.  Comments on Breitbart and the_donald suggest to me the necessary support is there.

This Proves the Institutions Are All Against Us!
This only disillusions people even more. Charlottesville even redpills people regarding the cops.  Until now it’s been a common sentiment on the right that law-enforcement will be on their side.  This expectation has now been proven horribly wrong.  At first, many may react with despair as each established institution lets its mask slip when pressured.  In the long run, it helps destroy the legitimacy of the system as its true nature is methodically exposed in all its facets.  The vast majority will just keep going to their day jobs no matter what happens but there is a proper audience that sees what’s happening and cares.  Even if they do nothing, it is essential to have a base of sympathizers. Even making ordinary, contented people feel the system is no longer infallible or the best possible way of life is enough.

The Deaths Will Drown Out The Message!
The people who got ran over make sure the story is on the front page of every publication and everyone’s heard of it.  Hillary Clinton’s alt-right speech made normal middle class people aware of an alt-right consisting of civic-nationalist infowars and breitbart.  Now the public has been introduced to the ethnic-identitarian alt-right as a movement.  Simply entering into the mainstream consciousness is a major milestone and implicitly expands the window of political views.  Breitbart is not longer the farthest, scariest edge before you reach the KKK.
That the accident took place as someone panicked while under attack means the alt-right can’t really be blamed for it.  A deliberate attack by an alt-rightist would have been a genuine disaster and of course that’s what they were hoping for, but they didn’t get it.
They can spin it so many people, who are implacably unfavorable anyway, think nazis are out to run people over, but they can’t actually do anything to perpetuate it more than a couple news cycles or get the leverage to force Trump to denounce the alt-rightists.

Overall:
Charlottesville was a significant strategic victory for the dissidents even if some might see it as a tactical defeat.
They conclusively proved for anyone who was receptive that the established order cannot be reasoned with.  At the same time, the core groups are energized by the official beginning of white civil rights.
For everyone else, they only need to be known.  Being a household name will be all that matters in getting them future international attention and recognition.

Update 8/16/2017: Every time before the antifas have engaged in a strategic action and then immediately melted away.  This kept it so most Americans hadn’t really heard of them.   The C’ville protest has triggered them into staying out in plain sight where they are massively overextending by lashing out with no long term strategy.  This has against my wildest expectations allowed the president to publicly denounce them.  This is  a huge victory for alt-dissidents!  The establishment has either lost control of their thugs or they have been baited into revealing their true nature in front of millions.  Humiliated in 2016, they are further exposed as both weak and incompetent.

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