The effect of culture on modern political form

1 posts

President Camacho

I was inclined to post this after reading Pleasureman's apparent approval of the National Socialist leaders' trials by "humanity". Whatever one’s opinion on Nazism, the precedent of Nuremberg should be unacceptable by any conservative standard-bearer; its show-trial verdicts were roundly denounced by contemporary Republicans even in an America that was fresh off of being reworked by FDR.

“Mankind” or “humanity” can only be, at best, zoological or taxonomic expressions; these terms hold no meaning for history and hence politics. In the world of Pleasureman and other kosher-cons, "peace" is simply the natural order of things and to break this supposed status quo renders one some kind of a villain. Maybe he thinks Clausewitz's dictum about politics is just one of the ramblings of a provincial "warmonger". But to the contrary, competition (including warfare) between nations is the very definition of high politics, and we find that “history” in the grand sense is nothing more than a history of political violence between nations. And so to promote a “goal of humanity” (“world peace”, “Progress”, “economic growth”) or parallel ideas like a “court of humanity” is equivalent to exterminating the very idea of nationality and sovereignty.

Edmund Burke epitomized the true conservative’s grasp of history in his rebuttal to the slogans of the French Revolution, when he declared that his people demanded their due as Englishmen , not as "human beings". For the English, like all true nations, were a breed , a group of men bound by blood and common historical experience and sense of destiny-- a breed that possessed its own unique cultural and political aims that were consecrated by time and hallowed by usage.

I find it interesting that Spengler holds climate-- vegetation, landscape, diet, etc – as a shaping-element not merely for superficial aspects of a budding culture but even its deepest religious and political ideas as well. For example the endless, roving North European plains--cradle of the Holy Roman Empire and homeland of the Normans-- engendered the characteristically Faustian "drive into distance" which cognitively manifested itself in everything from the space perspective in Western oil painting to the grand (given medieval technology) scale of the kingdoms to the eventual impulse for transcontinental navigation. The constellation of isolated island-points dispersed throughout the Aegean and Adriatic manifested itself in the Classical world's national ideal of small but fiercely independent city-states, the localized, place-bound god cults, etc.

Spengler in “The Hour of Decision” holds at the time of his writing that Soviet Socialism was a moribund creation from the start, and not for theoretical-economic reasons either:

He also attributes the peculiar dichotomy of the Communist revolutions—largely authoritarian in the North and anarchistic/syndicalist in the South—to their climactic and hence cultural attributes.
We could also extrapolate this climactic-cultural evolution to account for the decline after around 1648 or so of the Mediterranean powers (Bourbons and Hapsburgs) and rise of the North Sea powers (England, Netherlands, Sweden briefly, then Germany), as the onset of modernism brought with it the rise of increasingly coordinated and dictatorial economic and political systems. The individualized “Protestant work ethic” has long been fleshed out by Weber et al, but perhaps the inbred inability of the Western Mediterranean peoples to conceive of functional authoritarian/centralized political systems was a related factor in their relegation to the role of second-rate powers.

Our own Cornelio has reportedly wandered for miles from his village just to buy kebabs from the Moors-- just like the "Bedouin" prole nomads Spengler encountered in Spain and Italy-- and the massive scale of the recent rudderless youf protests in Barcelona etc puts the Occupy Wall Street layabouts to shame. I am soliciting his input on this thread.