Monday, September 25, 2017

Vox Popoli: Ideas must be sold

The Z-man observes that too many ideologues resist accepting the fact that their ideas have to be sold rather than simply accepted as holy writ from on high:
Good salesmen never lose sight of reality. That’s the problem with outsider political movements. They allow themselves to be trapped in narrow ideological ruts so any sales effort, that deviates in the slightest from dogma, results in civil war. The only pitchmen the ideologues accept are the guys waving around the severed hand, talking about how their product is great at cleaning blood stains. Any concession to public sensibilities is treated like heresy. The result is a self-ghettoization of the movement.

This has always been the problem with the libertarians. You can get a large audience in favor of limiting state regulation of commerce, but you are never getting a critical mass around the idea of abandoning paper money. You can talk people into loosening up marijuana laws, but no one is signing up for legal meth sales. That’s why the limit on libertarians is to have some of their language appropriated by Buckleyites. Otherwise, they are seen as a collection of eccentric weirdos.

That’s what’s happening with the alt-right and its fellow travelers. The core believers refuse to give in on basic tactics, like banning Nazi gear or minimizing the JQ stuff. The result is anyone that tries to soften the image is attacked as a traitor. That’s what you see with the Stormies. Anglin can’t accept even the token compromises at a site like Gab, so he goes to war with it. This ensures that his followers never stray from the ghetto that he has created for them. It also means potential recruits have a reason to ignore him.

This does not mean the alt-right is condemned to having fat guys in their tighty-whities, dancing around at their events. To avoid that fate, they need to produce leaders with the credibility to swat down guys like Anglin, when he gets out of control, but also aware of the fact that growing the movement means appealing to the general public. That means softening the pitch and making some compromises. They don’t have anyone capable of doing that at he moment, but they better find some.

He's absolutely right. That's why I reluctantly accepted the need to move into video despite the existence of Castalia House; I realized that we will never reach the non-literate majority through the medium of books. We have to speak their language and meet them on their ground. We need to accept that our preferences are irrelevant in this regard.

This is always difficult. The literate don't want to deal with non-literate media. The dialectic-speakers don't want to deal with rhetoric. The non-aggressive don't want to deal with aggression. The socialists don't want to deal with subjective value. The pagans don't want to deal with the Christian roots of the West.

But regardless of who we are and what we desire, we have to take reality as it is, not as we wish it to be.