In Praise of the West; Detangling Liberalism from the West

To the enemies of the West, who believe that the West is responsible for colonialism, oppression, death, and hatred:

We are not sorry.

We will not apologize for carving beauty out of this hellhole world’s roving bands of gangs, wanton genocides, and general disregard for other human life which are the mainstays of every civilization. The West are the only ones; yes, the only ones who were able to install anything resembling human rights. The West’s enemies are those who wish to lead us back into the arms of a regressive world of death and destruction which are the hallmarks of any non-Western civilization.

Men, originally made in the image of God, which had made themselves into tyrants and mongrels in their ignorance had to be got out of the way. One may criticize the West anywhere in the world; one may only criticize the rest of the world while they are not in that civilization, lest the secret police show up to exact revenge. One can easily disappear in China, Russia, or Brazil for much less. It is true that this is getting worse in the West, but it is not because the West is returning to its roots; it is because it is embracing their removal.

To be sure, mistakes were made. I also do not take the achievements of the past as my own, as “we,” I merely reply in the “we” because the antagonist characterizes modern Westerners – “you,” them” – as being responsible for everything the West has done. I confront this false and gratuitously ignorant characterization head on.

A fundamental component of Western Civilization is building upon the past, not fretting over errors which cannot be corrected, nor destroying foundational components of human life because they are offensive, or because “It’s 2018,” as morons say, thinking they are saying something meaningful. We draw inspiration from greatness, but we do not glory in the echoes or the fumes of the past. The past does not fill the blank space on my own shelves where my achievements should be and memories do not protect the Western source of human rights and progress – blood and sweat do that. But it does fill my mind with memories, visions, and an understanding that I am part of a history and a common people; something that for a time had faded from the consciousness of Europeans, but is on the upswing.

For the first time in history, the European peoples loosely united their nationalities around a substantive religious belief which represents the highest moral standard man has ever admitted at a corporate level. European peoples fought to not only gain power and wealth but to emulate the holiest and mightiest that the world has ever known: a God that came in human form and was willing himself to suffer and die on their behalf. Behind all of the political power plays which were thought necessary to retain order and stability, innumerable saints and religious men sought God’s assistance in changing the entire world such that the lofty ideas of God incarnate and his apostles could be, even if for a brief time, lived by men and experienced by men that the light of God himself would shine before them and within their hearts. Yes, the majority of actors in the political sphere probably were not so nobly motivated. But even if 20% of them had this in their hearts, this represents an enormously significant difference between it and past civilizations. The fact that condemnation came so swiftly when devoted churchmen learned what Spanish adventurers did in the New World should speak volumes, combined with a substantive understanding of what the inquisition and crusades were. Their counterparts in other cultures didn’t bat an eye at committing far worse atrocities.

The current European Union is a distorted attempt by man to replicate the natural unity that occurred, if only for a brief time and with plenty of flaws, under Catholicism. The cracks in that unity have existed for a long time, and the current immigration crisis is an attempt by the powers that be to maintain that unity. It will fail, and Brexit was a small foreshock of what is coming as the corruption of the major powers of Western Europe and its combined attempt with the powerful families of the world to impose a new order is exposed.

***

God set up natural Israel as his imagers on earth, and they broke through a certain degree of resistance. Through violence the kingdom had been established and through violence it would eventually be destroyed. But a remnant of that destruction came out of Babylon and from it Jesus was incarnated and re-grew the olive tree of his chosen people. That tree grew great and showered the earth with its blessings, that all nations would hear the voice of God and have a chance to see the light once hidden by the dominion of Satan and evil spirits.

Western Civilization as we now see it is the very human end result of that effort, after having been hollowed out by enlightenment liberalism, which attempted to demote theology and spirituality to one god among many, rather than the king of science and knowledge, designed to galvanize and unite knowledge into a coherent whole.

Western Civilization has its flaws: antagonistic extremes of worshiping wealth and capitalism or unfettered faith in state power and good intentions. But it has been leaps and bounds better than any other civilization. It has liberated countless men and women and enriched countless others. Technology, science, and art has flourished in a different way in the West. The Culture of Islam has many contributions of its own, as do the Asiatics; but the West’s contributions are much greater. The West explored and expanded the world in ways unrivaled in human history. Capitalism, a consequence of experimenting with decentralized ownership of various sources of production and ownership, only flowered in the West and has completely changed the world with regard to availability of resources. It had negative consequences in that it created family dynasties stretching back to the 1800s which exert an inordinate amount of control over human affairs, but the lifestyle of the average person in the West has improved so dramatically that the usual, boring, Marxist critiques of capitalism should elicit mockery. Yet, capitalism without proper cultural safeguards produces something that blends with Gramscian Marxism; a few families and oligarchs end up controlling so much of global wealth and power that something like it would likely be imposed in time.

There is a legitimate secondary argument about whether prosperity and the massive increase in quality of life in the West is a direct result of Christianity or of the Enlightenment, the Industrial Revolution, and Western Liberalism. As good of a discussion as that is, it begs a more primary question: Why did the Enlightenment, the Industrial Revolution, and Liberalism only happen in the West?

I know, dear Reader, that you are tempted to think my answer is merely “Christianity.” No, not quite. I think that is a bit like yelling “Jesus” in Church, as my separated Protestant brethren say. The specific reasons are a bit more nuanced.

Christianity’s structure embraced national identities and competing nations and factions (sometimes playing favorites, sometimes having them duke it out), rather than being fully unified or dominated by a single entity, as in Mandarin-administered China. The centrality of the Papacy conferred some of the benefits of common religious identity while retaining the benefits of competition and diversity among the European nations, but Christianity does not absorb other distinct entities or ethnicities like a Borg cube; it supplies tools and structure for approaching God and celebrates the strengths and weaknesses of the various nations. Simply, China was too well-ordered. Civilizations need agitation from internal competitors to evaluate new ideas on the basis of their potential utility, not their effect on the status quo.

It is a fair argument that perhaps the Papacy’s sole claim of itself as the Vicar of Christ on earth put it much in the position of the Mandarins, but the relationship of Church authority to science has been slandered, so to the common mind the (false) notion of what happened to Galileo has defined that. The Church nurtured the growth of the natural sciences, contrary to the common belief.

Perhaps if it had more clearly maintained its neutrality as arbiter and moral judge and an entity that transcends crass national political struggles rather than become a participant in the fray, it would not have itself become a target in the political games of Europe.

The Ancient Romans did not deal with the disparate nations as Catholicism did. Ancient Rome subjugated its vassals and made Roman status of preeminent importance. The Roman identity was to be supreme over all.

Yes, Nationalism and its concomitant unbalanced competition between nations was part of the reason the West had a meteoric ascent to prosperity. Note too that diversity among individual nations is one concept, diversity within a nation or “demographic replacement” is toxic to unity and national stability in every single historical example. Poland was torn into three pieces because of its diversity. Rome was sacked by the Vandals because they allowed an entire nation of foreigners to live within its borders. Large demographic shifts are functionally no different than war because they change the constitution of a political entity.

However, we in the west have been taught that nationalism is Nazism. It is not, and never was – some forms of nationalism have thousands of years of legitimate precedent, and group identities are part and parcel of human existence and cannot be extirpated. We are taught that the evils of nationalism caused the World Wars; it is much more accurate that transnational entities which attempted to control nationalism for their own ends via international and agreements and cartels caused the great wars of the 20th century, and good nations rose to clean up the mess the “international community” had made. The impulse behind suppressing Germany after World War I was the idea that in-group preferences must be subordinated to the abstract notion of loyalty to “humanity,” and what Germany really needed was to abandon its national roots and become liberal centrists who embrace the decadence of enlightenment era morality. You cannot have a Hitler without a Weimar. Man’s attempts to govern the world centrally will ultimately result in attacking certain nationalities and group identities and favoring others, and therefore war.

Liberalism has failed, and is on its descent. “Democracy” cannot be exported; liberalism is not directly compatible with other cultures and the results of pushing it into other countries creates unexpected consequences, as the Middle East and other regions illustrate. Nor are Greco-Roman legal and philosophical concepts, which marinated the West and became intertwined with its religious structure. Christianity itself can be, and has been. It has succeeded and is succeeding on every continent outside the West, who considers it one among many NGO interests. Liberalism, cut from the root of Western strength which is its theology and anthropology, shrivels or must find other ground in which to take root. Russia has endured the tortuous experiment of taking the implications of pinnacle enlightenment writers of the 19th century and implementing their anthropology and theology entirely. A Stalin came along very quickly to claim the reigns of an all-powerful state and intelligence apparatus charged with creating the utopia of man on earth, the utmost delusion of liberalism.

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