It’s the 20s and we’re fucked. The goodies limp out of a dumpster-fire decade in worse shape than any other point in recent history.
We shan’t be bunning down Babylon anytime soon. Might as well spend these five, maybe ten more years in exile reflecting on what went wrong. Not only have progressives lost the economic argument on a titanic scale, we’ve even lost the moral argument in many small but explosive areas.
Things are bad. I’m writing this in the stuporific lull between Christmas and New Year, memories of trying to explain collective ownership to a beloved family member are fresh and raw:
‘But if everyone’s paid the same, who’s boss?’
‘There’s no boss, what a ‘boss’ does is mostly just admin, he’s only paid more cos he owns the business.’
‘Yeah, that makes him the boss. Are ye tekkin’ the piss ye little shite? I should never have squeezed ye oot on that pub floor!’
‘Oww mum, stop throwing plates!’
I’m sure you can relate. The arguments we’re presenting clash on such a primal level with the way folk are conditioned to view society. You can’t attack the concept of ‘having a boss’ when the concept of ‘boss’ itself rests unchallenged.
Another fresh wound: In presenting an argument for a robust state, Corbyn’s Labour failed first to reframe the narrative of the state itself. That is the story of the Left in the 2010s; politics ignorant of the structures on which politics stand.
And for our failing, untold thousands will die. The structures which bind western civilisation are become a web of death. Malevolent neglect and Mammon-worship are our virtues now. The tower is fallen.
But all might not be lost forever.
If you’ll indulge me, I’d like to share some bullshit with you about:
- What the hell we do now
- Who we do it to
- How we make it happen
One man’s freedom fighter
Searching for minor policy changes or new areas of compromise is slow death. It’s necessary, for now, to depart the political sphere altogether. That sphere is built on cultural foundations of language and custom which make the enemy unbeatable.
It’s reductive to say ‘the game was rigged all along.’ The game is winnable, but only by creating a cultural consensus of ‘reality’ which can conceive of our victory.
If indeed, “we feel free because we lack the very language to articulate our unfreedom”, we must evolve new language tools which allow us this expression.
If “nothing is true, everything is permitted,” we must rediscover the means by which ideology is dictated to us, learn those techniques, and fight back.
The enormity of this task cannot be overstated. The enemy controls language and ideology on a global scale. Our efforts to build alternatives will be violently opposed with crushing force.
Thus, we must develop new cultural weapons. Most importantly: we must aggressively target weak or unguarded points in the enemy propaganda machine at every opportunity, at any cost.
The 20s must be a decade of constant ontological terrorism.
The enemy of my enemy
Over the past decade, our own worst enemy has been our smug moral presumption. Our indolence spawned a dark shadow, from a bearded alternate universe where making the world better means making the world feel better.
Don’t blame the far right for its own resurgence. Blame this materialistic indolence which allowed an entire civilisation to be bought with cocaine and social media.
Stagnation is as bad as regression. Those of us who refuse to either slip back into darkness or go back to sleep have two dragons to slay.
Stagnation is a vast monocultural swamp concealing many monsters. Neoliberalism, identity politics, corporate culture, entrepreneur worship, media (both traditional and social). The Dolores Umbridge crowd with their PR budget masquerading as ‘reasonable centrism.’
Though bloody-nosed from the last five years, they still own everything and are in no mood to let us off the plantation without a fight. They’re not your friends.
Regression is the old enemy. Totalitarianism, authoritarianism, the cult of the strongman, chauvinistic religious nationalism. Voldemort to the libs’ Umbridge, making right with might since Julius Evola.
Watch for them on the streets, yes, because the 2010s made them bold and gave them heroes. But above all else, keep watch for the fascist in your own heart. He’s not your friend.
I, for one, will be delighted if these two spend the 20s stalking the ruins of Babylon, tearing one another apart while we get on with our search for a better world. Opportunities to stir up tensions between the corporate centre and the nationalist right should be considered a sacred duty.
The means to an end
All this is doable, it’s been done many times. What I describe might look like an unwinnable war against insurmountable odds across the fabric of reality itself. Really though, it’s just the story of human history, whose long arc bends towards justice.
Concepts like fiat currency and fractional reserve banking (on which civilisation runs) are about as ‘real’ as the concept of God (on which civilisation ran). Those who join us in the hunt for a new God will be labelled insane, and will in time become so.
Joining that fight begins with you. Practice psychic self-defence, not simple commodified ‘self-care.’ Keep time for yourself each day for solitary reflection, separate from the inherent evil of the world. Only call this ‘prayer’ if you’re brave enough to face the implications.
When you’re ready, you’ll find yourself assigned to a search party. There’s something we missed and we’ll know what it is when we see it. Revisit fields like psychoanalysis, astrology, feng shui, memetics, conspiracy theory. Find something useful and bring it back so we can weaponise it.
Those who prove themselves as culture scavengers will be prepared for the next step, of which it is unwise to speak.
Until then, get out there, make wild assertions and worry about being right later. We are the future, and we have a lot of time to go mad together.