Metternich’s Message on Charlottesville – Hitlerism Without Hitler is LARP Nazism

Metternich’s assessment of Napoleon I was the best there ever was.

His initially dismissive assessment of Napoleon III was off the mark – Bonapartism without Bonaparte is false.  But even when he wrong (to be sure, a rare event), Metternich’s thinking often was on the right track; most impressively, his views contain lessons that can be applied to a surprising number of use cases from any time period.

Charlottesville is just such a use case where the old Master provided the elements to  conjur a proper political analysis.

As it turned out France under Napoleon III was Bonapartism with a Bonaparte.

But his point applies to any national leader well enough that his wrong application of that statement to Napoleon III may still be generalized into this correct scientific statement –

  • Bonapartism requires a Bonaparte.

Now, the quality of political debate in Metternich’s era had not disintegrated to the point where it was necessary to point out that viable Bonapartism required implementation in France.  But I do not yet have such an advantage, at least not until the Hamiltonian jackboot has completed its inevitable takeover of the United States, achieved world domination in the name of freedom and Democracy.

In the meantime circumstances demand we add a regional constraint to Metternich’s general political equation.  Thus –

  • Bonapartism requires a Bonaparte in France.

Show me the head of state and I can show you whether or not the equation is balanced – Maduroism really is in keeping with “Bolivarianism requires a Bolivar in the Andes“.

The problem, this still leaves Venezuela with Bolivarianism, and Bolivarianism leads to a wasteland with or without a real Bolivar.  But that is another article.

Then there is the inexhaustible perpetual memetic motion machine known as Adolf Hitler.

As often happens when the too-famous Adolf is brought up at least one side (usually all sides) is not talking about actual Hitlerism but strawman Hitlerism bearing no resemblance to the genuine article.

Real Hitlerism with Hitler in Germany was a viable political movement.  And, even for the Germans, probably a one time experiment that got carried away with itself that will not be repeated again.

Charlottesville did not involve Hitlerism in any form.

Hitlerism without Hitler is LARP Nazism; a counterfeit, fool’s gold Nazism with no more hope of achieving serious political power than #NeverTrump.  If this conclusion were ever under any cloud of doubt to the rational observer the fiasco that just befell the LARP Nazis lifts it.

LARP Nazis have three strikes against them – their Hitlerism is not Nazism (Hitler was a German racial supremacist, not a “white nationalist”, who would have killed an extra 100 million Slavs if he had won), they have no Hitler, and even if they were adhering to real Nazism with a real Hitler they are implementing it in the wrong country.

Three strikes means LARP Nazism is a political nullity that should be treated as a non-player on the political field.

This brings me to the other toxic variable in this most ridiculous of events, the Progressives.

Logically they should dismiss LARP Nazism, but they do not because they see in it political yarn to spin into gold.

For them the perceived advantages of turning this minor event (only somewhat more significant than a deadly rock concert riot) into a second Barbarossa are multiple.

Their egos need the surge they feel by picturing themselves as heroic anti-Nazis without the substantial risks that came with fighting real Nazis.

In the absence of a real Hitler, a fake Hitler to fight is enough to splash the Progressive’s overactive (if limited) neurons with a pleasing dose of crack.

But, like all drug highs, the exhilaration of political crack is fleeting.

After the hangover is shaken off the real work is tying this event to Trump no matter how ludicrous are the connecting dots on the chalkboard to getting post-Hitler swastikas to equal Trump.

This spurious connection is also a drug-fueled hallucination.  It is also self-defeating for the same reasons – Trumpism is neither Hitlerism with Hitler nor Hitlerism without Hitler.

Only if Trump is actually a real Hitler (I’ll be generous enough to humor this hypothetical by not pointing out he serves as head of state of the wrong country) will the tag stick.

Trump clearly isn’t, but the Left will overplay this exaggerated incident anyway by not letting the matter go long after the public tunes out the argument.

My advice is to let them beat this dead Panzer because their drug fueled hallucination leads them nowhere out of the political desert they’ve wandered into.

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40 thoughts on “Metternich’s Message on Charlottesville – Hitlerism Without Hitler is LARP Nazism”

  1. You might enjoy this recent post:

    You’re making the same mistake Moldbug made by not explaining the connection between Lincoln’s 1865-1932 settlement on Hamiltonian terms – which was highly successful – and the New Deal.

    The New Deal & Progressive movement has nothing to do with the Federalists. Quite the reverse, Progressivism was the arch-enemy of 1865-1932 Hamiltonian Capitalism.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes, it would be good to explore this issue in more depth with you because here we might have some disagreements.

    To begin with, my claim concerns the structure of the state itself or constitutional philosophy and not that Federalism was Progressivism.

    “You’re making the same mistake Moldbug made by not explaining the connection between Lincoln’s 1865-1932 settlement on Hamiltonian terms – which was highly successful – and the New Deal.”

    On the contrary, you also have to explain how and why the system that was in place failed.

    You have made reference to Hamilton as uploading an “imperial source code” and we can look upon him charitably for wanting to create a strong, coherent state. However, it was a comprise, perhaps the best that could be made, but the comprise still failed.

    So, it would be good to here your thoughts about Imperium in Imperio.

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  3. On the contrary, you also have to explain how and why the system that was in place failed.

    I reject the notion the overthrow of any political system necessarily indicates there was an inherent structural flaw with that system as Moldbug (who barely scratched the surface of Hamiltonian governance and whose opinion of Lincoln is substantially incorrect) does linking Imperio in Imperium with a failure of the Constitutional visions of Hamilton and Jefferson.

    Without going into details to be dealt with in future entries, the failure of Hamiltonian government was a failure of will to firmly implement a correct system of government in the face of opposition much as Louis XVI and the Bourbon Restoration failed by not rigorously adhering to Monarchism.

    So, it would be good to here your thoughts about Imperium in Imperio.

    I can’t completely answer the question because I have articles in progress that will explain it.

    But, in brief, Imperium in Imperio is a historic norm, not an aberration, for all types of stable government – Moldbug is again wrong because his obsession with Fascist collectivism blinded him to the fact Monarchism was normally oligarchical in that it had multiple power centers with many internal divisions of power.

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  4. Looking forward to it:

    “But, in brief, Imperium in Imperio is a historic norm, not an aberration, for all types of stable government – Moldbug is again wrong because his obsession with Fascist collectivism blinded him to the fact Monarchism was normally oligarchical in that it had multiple power centers with many internal divisions of power.”

    That is true in point of fact, but it is a different thing to say that as a normative principle or standard that one should implement it. As the article shows, all sides seemed to agree that Imperium in Imperio was a mistake, but they disagreed over what that mistake required.

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  5. “I reject the notion the overthrow of any political system necessarily indicates there was an inherent structural flaw with that system as Moldbug (who barely scratched the surface of Hamiltonian governance and whose opinion of Lincoln is substantially incorrect) does linking Imperio in Imperium with a failure of the Constitutional visions of Hamilton and Jefferson.”

    When the facts contradict the theory or the design, you can reject the facts or the theory. On paper, the design did not do its job.

    Even if the system was not overthrown, one can still disagree with the system over first principles, which was certainly apparent among the founders.

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  6. “Moldbug is again wrong because his obsession with Fascist collectivism blinded him to the fact Monarchism was normally oligarchical in that it had multiple power centers with many internal divisions of power.”

    Not sure how you would justify that claim about fascism, but even if it was correct you conclusion does not follow. Moldbug could reply that the fact that the Monarchical state had multiple power centers was a problem, though not a design problem.

    Also, is it correct to say that your view of the Civil War was that it resulted not from concern over slavery but because of the North industrial and economic interests? Further, that you think it was justified. Is this correct?

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  7. Moldbug could reply that the fact that the Monarchical state had multiple power centers was a problem, though not a design problem.

    Multiple power centers has been a consistent, purposeful, and successful feature of Monarchist design theory going back to Ancient Egypt and whatever was earlier than Egypt. Therefore, divided power is not a “problem” of any kind.

    But Moldbug would never say the various French Revolutions invalidated Monarchist theory (which he got wrong by exaggerating how centralized Monarchism was).

    Therefore why should I accept Progressive government as any more of a refutation of Hamiltonian government?

    When the facts contradict the theory or the design, you can reject the facts or the theory.

    See above.

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  8. Also, is it correct to say that your view of the Civil War was that it resulted not from concern over slavery but because of the North industrial and economic interests? Further, that you think it was justified. Is this correct?

    Yes.

    Specifically the Confederacy was a potential territorial military threat to Northern Western settlements since the South seceded over disagreements about expanding slavery further West. The right to a continuation of the existence of slavery in the South was never challenged by the North; Lincoln in fact endorsed a Constitutional amendment protecting slavery in the South if there was an agreement to end further expansion of slavery.

    Moldbug (like the paleocon pro-Confederacy dogma he didn’t improve upon except as an anti-Lincoln strawman) either dodges addressing the threat slavery expansion (not its existing pre-War boundaries) posed to the North or frames the Confederate argument in a way that dismisses the North’s right to act in its own interests, which is nonsensical.

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  9. As the article shows, all sides seemed to agree that Imperium in Imperio was a mistake, but they disagreed over what that mistake required.

    The different power centers of Progressivism are not relevant to the debates between Hamilton and Jefferson and their design – As an advocate of a Royalistic Executive for life Hamilton would never have wanted the Civil Service to be independent of the President’s will (let alone undermine the President as it always has with post FDR Republican Presidents) or be unaccountable from the Legislative and Judicial branches.

    Jefferson also would have never supported a Civil Service that was independent of the other 3 branches and the will of the voter.

    The introduction of the Civil Service as a 4th branch of government was an entirely novel, disruptive, addition that came much later and speaks little to Hamiltonian (or Jeffersonian) features in the Constitution.

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  10. The purpose of the Progressive’s 4th branch is to destroy the independence of the other 3 branches of government as well as the states.

    Therefore the New Deal and its post-WWII additions is an external, Revolutionary attack on the design compromise between Hamilton and Jefferson, therefore it does not speak to a design defect of the Constitution as originally intended or as practiced from 1787 to 1932 anymore than the Revolutionary attacks against French Monarchism speak to a design defect of Monarchism.

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  11. “Multiple power centers has been a consistent, purposeful, and successful feature of Monarchist design theory going back to Ancient Egypt and whatever was earlier than Egypt. ”

    What is your evidence for this claim? To be clear, we mean powers that are either independent from or can resist the central power.

    “Therefore, divided power is not a “problem” of any kind.”

    Right, so you are happy with the separation of powers in a state. Does this not contradict pretty much every thing we know about successful organisations, from football clubs to armies to corporations?

    Furthermore, as the linked article shows, Hamilton did apparently spend considerable time, as did others, in arguing against it. So perhaps there is a problem worth addressing here.

    “But Moldbug would never say the various French Revolutions invalidated Monarchist theory (which he got wrong by exaggerating how centralized Monarchism was).””

    I’m not sure he does exaggerate, I think he would argue that the French Monarchy was, in fact, quite weak.

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  12. “Specifically the Confederacy was a potential territorial military threat to Northern Western settlements since the South seceded over disagreements about expanding slavery further West. The right to a continuation of the existence of slavery in the South was never challenged by the North; Lincoln in fact endorsed a Constitutional amendment protecting slavery in the South if there was an agreement to end further expansion of slavery.”

    Thanks for the confirmation, I was not sure if you thought this. Would you also accept that “ending slavery” was a ideological rationale then?

    “Moldbug (like the paleocon pro-Confederacy dogma he didn’t improve upon except as an anti-Lincoln strawman) either dodges addressing the threat slavery expansion (not its existing pre-War boundaries) posed to the North or frames the Confederate argument in a way that dismisses the North’s right to act in its own interests, which is nonsensical.”

    There are few issues here. Firstly, you accept that the North had its interests and it acted upon them against the South. This conception already assumes “divided” or “separate” powers both in fact and in theory and this would lend support to the claim that Imperium in Imperio (state within a state) is a problem.

    Secondly, setting aside any moral issue with slavery, the South did want to leave the Union peacefully – but the North would not let them and they used war as a means to advance their own interests. Again, is this not a proof of Imperium in Imperio leading to “conflict, war and bloodshed”?

    Thirdly, does the fact that there was a Civil War here not strike against democracy because you had these separate interests competing to capture and control the state for their own ends?

    Fourthly, and this is not so important for our discussion, do you think a state (the North here) starting a war (or provoking one) because of the possibility of something (slavery) that could be challenged without war would have little to no moral justification?

    Notice, indeed, that the question of “proper authority” here is unclear and contested, that the war was not fought for the right reason or in response an actual, as opposed to a possible threat, and that war was a disproportionate response to the South’s actions.

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  13. What is your evidence for this claim? To be clear, we mean powers that are either independent from or can resist the central power.

    Perhaps I should simply use oligarchy (formalized and informal oligarchy?) if Imperio in Imperium is tied up with partisan politics over the Catholic Church and Colonial America’s justification for independence.

    The Catholic Church’s influence over European Kings from the Dark Ages to the Medieval Ages and a bit after demonstrates oligarchical power sharing characteristics (divided power). The Egyptian priesthood had a similar influence over Pharaohs, though not as impressive as the Catholic Church in its heyday because Rome held sway over multiple nations.

    The Hapsburg’s Empire consisting of multiple Kingdoms with fairly generous local jurisdiction.

    And how does Jeffersonian states rights solve the problem you refer to with Imperio in Imperium?

    Its logic can be extended to argue even Jefferson’s ideally limited US government would fail because it had divided powers between state and national governments, and that the states should all be separate nations.

    Right, so you are happy with the separation of powers in a state. Does this not contradict pretty much every thing we know about successful organisations, from football clubs to armies to corporations?

    The top leadership in those examples need to satisfy different power brokers within and without their organization by acting within certain rules (formal and informal) to keep them happy. Deviating from them risks the power brokers removing the “sovereign”.

    I’m not sure he does exaggerate, I think he would argue that the French Monarchy was, in fact, quite weak.

    Was the Monarchy weak or Monarchism? French Monarchism from Clovis to Louis XVI operated smoothly for about 1300 years resulting in France being the most powerful or second most powerful European state by 1789. French Monarchism was clearly a success even if the Monarchy of Louis XVI was weak.

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  14. Would you also accept that “ending slavery” was a ideological rationale then?

    No.

    It was ending the threat to Yankee settlers occupying Western territories posed by slavery’s expansion. The idea emancipation was the objective was an after the fact invention, not the true reason the Union went to war.

    To avoid war Lincoln offered a Constitutional right preserving slavery in existing slave states.

    The South rejected this Constitutional offer because it was not arguing to preserve its existing rights but because it was being denied a non-existent “right” to infringe on free soil territory.

    There are few issues here. Firstly, you accept that the North had its interests and it acted upon them against the South. This conception already assumes “divided” or “separate” powers both in fact and in theory and this would lend support to the claim that Imperium in Imperio (state within a state) is a problem.

    Yes, but theoretically Imperium in Imperio cuts both ways – the war can as easily be used to demonstrate that Jefferson left the states with too many rights separate from the Federal government.

    Secondly, setting aside any moral issue with slavery, the South did want to leave the Union peacefully – but the North would not let them and they used war as a means to advance their own interests. Again, is this not a proof of Imperium in Imperio leading to “conflict, war and bloodshed”?

    False in terms of who was the aggressor.

    The aggressor against local jurisdiction was the South which demanded in exchange for remaining in the Union extra territory already occupied by free soil settlers, especially Southern California’s substantial farmland. California’s territorial legislature had voted unanimously to enter the Union as a free state, so the demand was politically impossible in California as well as other territories. The only way the South could be given an expansion would be for Lincoln to order the Union army to forcibly remove the settlers.

    The South had no legal or moral justification to violate the right of free soil settlers by forcing them to accept slave plantations.

    Fourthly, and this is not so important for our discussion, do you think a state (the North here) starting a war (or provoking one) because of the possibility of something (slavery) that could be challenged without war would have little to no moral justification?

    The North was defending the South’s provocations from expanding slavery to free soil territories where slavery was not wanted.

    Notice, indeed, that the question of “proper authority” here is unclear and contested, that the war was not fought for the right reason or in response an actual, as opposed to a possible threat, and that war was a disproportionate response to the South’s actions.

    A possible threat is sufficient grounds for war.

    There is no reason why the Union should have assumed it could live in peace with the Confederacy when it had left under pretenses that involved territorial expansion onto Union-loyalist territory. It was very possible the Confederacy could have initiated a war to try to claim Western territories from the Union if Lincoln did nothing.

    The Confederates also did not ask for exit negotiations, they simply walked out and declared independence and then fired the fired the first shot on Ft. Sumter.

    What should the North’s “proportionate” reaction to Ft. Sumter have been other than war?

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  15. Since I reject the argument the North was violating the South’s rights, I still don’t have an example where Hamilton’s division of powers was the source for a failure to respect states rights between 1865 and 1932.

    The encroachments against state’s rights you list in your article are all the work of Progressives. But where are the Hamiltonian infringements on state’s rights unrelated to slavery (including Reconstruction) between 1787 to 1932?

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  16. “Perhaps I should simply use oligarchy (formalized and informal oligarchy?) if Imperio in Imperium is tied up with partisan politics over the Catholic Church and Colonial America’s justification for independence.

    The Catholic Church’s influence over European Kings from the Dark Ages to the Medieval Ages and a bit after demonstrates oligarchical power sharing characteristics (divided power). The Egyptian priesthood had a similar influence over Pharaohs, though not as impressive as the Catholic Church in its heyday because Rome held sway over multiple nations.”

    Oligarchy is distinct from monarchy, though you could argue, per iron law of oligarchy, that all systems are oligarchic.

    The issue is much more fundamental than examples like the Catholic Church v Kings. It is about the nature of sovereignty itself.

    Sovereignty must be unitary and absolute. Unitary means that there must be some center (a king) that has absolute and final power of decision with respect to X. X may be land, taxes, war-making, legislation, distribution, adjudication.

    Perhaps, the closest thing we have today would be a private enterprise where the owner is the CEO and has absolute power to decide policy, pay and personnel.

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  17. “And how does Jeffersonian states rights solve the problem you refer to with Imperio in Imperium?

    Its logic can be extended to argue even Jefferson’s ideally limited US government would fail because it had divided powers between state and national governments, and that the states should all be separate nations.”

    Exactly.

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  18. “Was the Monarchy weak or Monarchism? French Monarchism from Clovis to Louis XVI operated smoothly for about 1300 years resulting in France being the most powerful or second most powerful European state by 1789. French Monarchism was clearly a success even if the Monarchy of Louis XVI was weak.”

    From what I have read, I would disagree. Three books you might enjoy on this subject. Bertrand de Jouvenel’s On Power: A Natural History of its Growth. 2: Charles Tilly Capital, Coercion and State Formation. 3: Mesquita’s The Dictator’s Handbook (see the opening chapter).

    Also, to add a fourth, Francis Fukuyama has a good discussion about France in his book on the Origins of Political Order.

    The problem was, counter-intuitively, the weakness of the Monarchy with respect to taxes, raising armies and setting policy. The Monarchy was starved for cash and its attempt to amass sufficient “energy” was stymied by other power centers: Church, Landlords etc. This then resulted in two thing: 1. a centuries long evolutionary development where the central power acted in various ways to destroy all other competing centers of power; 2, war with external states which allowed the state to amass more and more power with which to amass more power.

    War mad the state and the state made war. It was a feedback loop. War led to greater centralization because successful war-making required bureaucracy which allowed for more war. However, the bureaucracy also allowed the central power to degrade, diminish and destroy rival centers of power.

    One of the main ways that it did this was to use low against middle. Power claimed to acting benevolently on behalf of the oppressed, but the real reason was to destroy the middle.

    See:

    https://imperialenergyblog.wordpress.com/2017/05/24/a-steel-cameralist-manifesto-part-3a-the-age-of-crisis-the-science-of-the-state-and-the-rules-for-rulers/

    https://imperialenergyblog.wordpress.com/2017/06/13/steel-cameralist-manifesto-part-3c-the-age-of-crisis-crime-chaos-conflict-and-the-centralising-power/

    https://imperialenergyblog.wordpress.com/2017/07/21/power-praxeology-and-three-reactionary-philosophies-of-history-34/

    https://imperialenergyblog.wordpress.com/2017/07/23/the-praxeology-of-power-or-the-science-of-elite-action-44/

    See also the Patron Theory of Politics (Links and discussion are contained above.)

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  19. “It was ending the threat to Yankee settlers occupying Western territories posed by slavery’s expansion. The idea emancipation was the objective was an after the fact invention, not the true reason the Union went to war.

    To avoid war Lincoln offered a Constitutional right preserving slavery in existing slave states.”

    I don’t know enough to have a firm opinion on the matter, but I would like to clarify your views. I assume that the Civil War represented a failure and the question what role, if any, did the constitution and structure of the state play. Was it helpful or harmful role?

    You claim that it was a threat to the North’s economic interest, but can you clarify what you mean by this? Are you siding with the revisionists, in that it was in the interests of the industrialists and bankers?

    You claim that a possible threat is sufficient grounds for war. That is a very low bar to meet.

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  20. Sovereignty must be unitary and absolute. Unitary means that there must be some center (a king) that has absolute and final power of decision with respect to X. X may be land, taxes, war-making, legislation, distribution, adjudication.

    An oligarchy collectively may have, and usually has had, power over all governmental decision making powers. If the various functions and responsibilities are assigned to various power brokers the state may act as a whole. Therefore the state can be unitary if no single Führer has all power invested in himself.

    The problem was, counter-intuitively, the weakness of the Monarchy with respect to taxes, raising armies and setting policy. The Monarchy was starved for cash and its attempt to amass sufficient “energy” was stymied by other power centers: Church, Landlords etc. This then resulted in two thing: 1. a centuries long evolutionary development where the central power acted in various ways to destroy all other competing centers of power; 2, war with external states which allowed the state to amass more and more power with which to amass more power.

    War mad the state and the state made war. It was a feedback loop. War led to greater centralization because successful war-making required bureaucracy which allowed for more war. However, the bureaucracy also allowed the central power to degrade, diminish and destroy rival centers of power.

    This was a common problem among all pre-20th century states. In Medieval Europe it was common for local aristocracy to have their own military forces independent of their nation’s king and to occasionally wage war on him.

    The French Monarchy for 1300 years was not, so far as I know, more likely to wage war than any other nation and by the 18th century it was the most powerful or second most powerful Western European nation.

    The conclusion to draw is that oligarchical centers of power within Monarchy are stable systems(relative to other governmental systems) and warfare is beneficial so long as one wins.

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  21. I don’t know enough to have a firm opinion on the matter, but I would like to clarify your views. I assume that the Civil War represented a failure and the question what role, if any, did the constitution and structure of the state play. Was it helpful or harmful role?

    The Constitution delineated what functions each of the various power centers may play in American politics – Executive, Judiciary, Congressional, State, Church, Military, Business and Personal Property.

    The South was guilty of demanding a non-existent right to infringe on the desire of free soil Western territories on their way to becoming full states to accept slaves.

    There is no basis for this kind of demand – states overruling the laws and territory of an outside local jurisdiction – anywhere in the Constitution. The demand was also politically impossible to implement since it would mean the Union Army would have had to forcibly evict free soil settlers and hand their land to Southern plantation owners.

    Therefore there was no failure of the Constitution, there was a failure by the South to adhere to it.

    The Constitution, on the contrary, worked because one of the Federal government’s duties as far as Hamilton was concerned was to put down rebellions.

    You claim that it was a threat to the North’s economic interest, but can you clarify what you mean by this? Are you siding with the revisionists, in that it was in the interests of the industrialists and bankers?

    I’m claiming the South was a military threat to the Union’s Western territories.

    In other words, if Lincoln had done nothing to stop secession the South would likely have tried at some future point to attack and annex the Union’s free soil territories for the benefit of the Confederacy’s economic interests – and the whims of the Confederacy’s economic interests for some reason that have not been coherently explained by the “revisionists” are Holy Scripture whereas the Union has no right to defend itself or act in its own interests.

    You claim that a possible threat is sufficient grounds for war. That is a very low bar to meet.

    A possible threat has always been sufficient grounds for war.

    Do you really think Bismarck would have tolerated unilateral secession by a large portion of Prussia that exited under the pretext of economic and territorial claims on loyal Prussian regions?

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  22. “This was a common problem among all pre-20th century states. In Medieval Europe it was common for local aristocracy to have their own military forces independent of their nation’s king and to occasionally wage war on him.

    The French Monarchy for 1300 years was not, so far as I know, more likely to wage war than any other nation and by the 18th century it was the most powerful or second most powerful Western European nation.

    The conclusion to draw is that oligarchical centers of power within Monarchy are stable systems(relative to other governmental systems) and warfare is beneficial so long as one wins.”

    Contentious.

    De Jouvenel, Tilly and others would disagree. The European states, such as France, were much more likely to go to war. In fact, from Jouvenel, the conclusion is that this system was not stable and while warfare is beneficial to the state (if it wins) it is very much open to question whether it benefits the people of that state.

    The system was not stable because the central power was not strong enough relative to other power centers. Strength, in terms of war-making essentially (men, money and materials).

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  23. “There is no basis for this kind of demand – states overruling the laws and territory of an outside local jurisdiction – anywhere in the Constitution. The demand was also politically impossible to implement since it would mean the Union Army would have had to forcibly evict free soil settlers and hand their land to Southern plantation owners.

    Therefore there was no failure of the Constitution, there was a failure by the South to adhere to it.”

    Before getting into the weeds on this issue, let’s back up.

    The following is, I think, the basic issues (you may disagree).

    1: Is Imperium in Imperio a political mistake?

    2: Did the U.S Constitution commit this mistake?

    3: Did the Civil War result, in whole or in part, from this mistake?

    4: Did the triumph of Progressivism in the 20th Century result, in part or in whole, from this error?

    I say yes to 1 and 2. On three, I hold a “prior probability” (if you will) that the answer is yes (in part). On 4, I would answer yes.

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  24. De Jouvenel, Tilly and others would disagree. The European states, such as France, were much more likely to go to war. In fact, from Jouvenel, the conclusion is that this system was not stable and while warfare is beneficial to the state (if it wins) it is very much open to question whether it benefits the people of that state.

    Does centralization lead to more peace?

    By the standards of traditional European Monarchies Peter the Great’s Russia was very autocratic.

    Based on the below links Russia fought 16 wars from 1700 to 1789 while France fought 11 over the same time period.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_wars_involving_France

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_wars_involving_Russia

    The system was not stable because the central power was not strong enough relative to other power centers. Strength, in terms of war-making essentially (men, money and materials).

    To say systems of decentralized European Monarchies were unstable is similar to “…and then Rome fell” to discredit Imperialism.

    Yes, Rome fell. But it took five centuries during which they set the gold standard for Imperialism.

    If that is what’s considered failure there are many “successful” societies that wish they could have “failed” that much.

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  25. 1: Is Imperium in Imperio a political mistake?

    As you define it yes.

    2: Did the U.S Constitution commit this mistake?

    No because the principles of oligarchy and division of powers that the Constitution is based does not equate with Imperium in Imperio.

    As the Constitution is written there is sufficient collective power at the Federal level to conduct the normal functions of statecraft even though the Executive, Legislative, Judicial branches have different, non-overlapping, functionalities.

    The powers of the Executive + Legislative + Judicial branches = 100% of the available Federal power.

    This is no more an error of Imperium in Imperio than the division of European Monarchies into different power centers: In both cases power is distributed but balanced across different power centers.

    3: Did the Civil War result, in whole or in part, from this mistake?

    No because the South did not secede over an argument about what rights they had within the jurisdiction of their own states.

    4: Did the triumph of Progressivism in the 20th Century result, in part or in whole, from this error?

    No more than the French Revolution indicates a failure of Monarchism as a system.

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  26. In my opinion strong arguments against the Federalists and Lincoln cannot be made using the conventional wisdom of Moldbug or paleoconservatives (which Moldbug basically just regurgitated without substantively improving upon).

    Their paleocon detractors wrongly try to have it both ways with Hamilton who is, in their view, simultaneously a Royalist and the first Liberal Progressive despite the obvious fact Royalism and Progressivism are politically mutually exclusive.

    Lincoln is wrongly branded a “Liberal” when in reality he was a Conservative Hamiltonian because he had no desire to fundamentally transform the existing power structure of the United States so long as the South agreed to abandon their demands to further expand slavery.

    Moldbug is correct part of the Progressive Northern elite founded modern American Liberalism. Where he errs is in describing the Progressive elite as a majority throughout the Gilded Age; Progressives were never a majority of Northern political opinion until the Northeast shifted to Progressive by WWII (both Republicans and Democrats were more or less Progresssive after WWII).

    In effect this leaves Moldbug with nothing to say about why Hamiltonian Republicanism fell apart after 1932 because he never acknowledges the North was Conservative in the first place.

    To refute Hamilton and Lincoln, and then draw a connection between their politics and Progressivism you will have to go beyond what paleocon NeoConfederates and Moldbug have argued.

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  27. “By the standards of traditional European Monarchies Peter the Great’s Russia was very autocratic.

    Based on the below links Russia fought 16 wars from 1700 to 1789 while France fought 11 over the same time period.”

    Not sure what you are getting at with this. Firstly, I would include Russia as (semi-European). Secondly, why chose that period and not before or after? Thirdly, France had what: 3 neighbors? How many neighbors did Russia have?

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  28. “To say systems of decentralized European Monarchies were unstable is similar to “…and then Rome fell” to discredit Imperialism.

    Yes, Rome fell. But it took five centuries during which they set the gold standard for Imperialism.

    If that is what’s considered failure there are many “successful” societies that wish they could have “failed” that much.”

    Unstable is not the same as “failed.”

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  29. “1: Is Imperium in Imperio a political mistake?

    As you define it yes.

    2: Did the U.S Constitution commit this mistake?

    No because the principles of oligarchy and division of powers that the Constitution is based does not equate with Imperium in Imperio.”

    It might be worthwhile setting out a neo Hamiltonian position on this. The position could do with a good re-examination.

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  30. “This is no more an error of Imperium in Imperio than the division of European Monarchies into different power centers: In both cases power is distributed but balanced across different power centers.”

    The division is Europe was de facto, while in America is was both de jure and de facto.

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  31. Not sure what you are getting at with this. Firstly, I would include Russia as (semi-European). Secondly, why chose that period and not before or after? Thirdly, France had what: 3 neighbors? How many neighbors did Russia have?

    If the inherent instability associated with Imperium in Imperio were a cause of war then we would expect the oligarchical model of French Monarchism to be more inclined to warfare than the autocratic system of Russian Imperialism. This assumes Imperium in Imperio is equivalent to oligarchy, which I doubt, but let’s go with it for the sake of argument.

    That there is no clear evidence France was more inclined to warfare than Russia (if anything, the reverse) suggests Imperium in Imperio (if that’s what France was practicing) is not destabilizing relative to other pre-1789 systems.

    It might be worthwhile setting out a neo Hamiltonian position on this. The position could do with a good re-examination.

    There’s no need for prefixes.

    And I’m not the one who bears burden of proof since the Progressives are the ones running the show with an operation that is inherently antagonistic and alien to what Hamilton proposed.

    The division is Europe was de facto, while in America is was both de jure and de facto.

    America’s division of powers was formalized in the Constitution but, as written, had no inherent problems that were worse than de facto “privileges” enjoyed by the power centers in Europe.

    If Hamilton had the last 200 years before him, why might he not go for something like the above?

    The problem with modern government is entirely the fault of the independence of the Civil Service, and its Progressive allies outside official USG. Scale has nothing to do with this – smaller Western nations such as Australia and New Zealand have the same problems managing basic government affairs because their Civil Service is always in a perpetually revolutionary posture.

    The Civil Service is not supposed to be center of power of any kind under either Hamilton or Jefferson’s vision of government.

    Liked by 1 person

  32. “If the inherent instability associated with Imperium in Imperio were a cause of war then we would expect the oligarchical model of French Monarchism to be more inclined to warfare than the autocratic system of Russian Imperialism. This assumes Imperium in Imperio is equivalent to oligarchy, which I doubt, but let’s go with it for the sake of argument.”

    No.

    War should be seen, often but not always, as a background “initial condition” that exists without any connection to the state.

    Ok, we have done some exchange of fire on this subject and I know your position much better now.

    A few questions.

    1: Have you read any Jouvenel?
    2: Have you read any of the stuff by Reactionary Future or his Patron Theory of Politics? I would say that he is, perhaps, the heir to Moldbug or at least he has followed through and systematized his work on the subject of Imperium in Imperio.
    3: I think you two would have much to say to each other on the subject.

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  33. 1: Have you read any Jouvenel?

    No.

    However I do know from reading Metternich that he was a great fan of traditional French Monarchism. If that system had a structural flaw in terms of sovereignty he would have pointed it out. But all his criticisms are focused on implementation not the reality of distribution of powers within France.

    2: Have you read any of the stuff by Reactionary Future or his Patron Theory of Politics? I would say that he is, perhaps, the heir to Moldbug or at least he has followed through and systematized his work on the subject of Imperium in Imperio.

    No.

    Can you point to any work of his that deals with European Monarchism?

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  34. I’ve skimmed through the arguments and have questions.

    Would it be correct to say in those links the main indictment against European Monarchism is that the Reformation shows centralized power was eager to push aside rivaling Papal influence?

    Also, I’ve updated Robber Barron Capitalism Part II. It is still not complete in full, but I have finished the main section arguing against Austrian business cycle theory.

    Press ctrl-F and go to the section that says:

    Hamiltonian Arguments Against the Austrian Business Cycle

    Read only that section and let me know what you think.

    https://pragmaticallydistributed.wordpress.com/2017/05/28/robber-baron-capitalism-in-four-lessons-part-ii/

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