Conspiracy liberalism as controlled opposition

One of the favourite terms used by nearly every conspiracy theorist, typically to discredit other conspiracy theorists or to discredit radical critics of capitalism and the state, is 'controlled opposition'. The idea is that since said critics are believed to be identifying the wrong targets, they are at best unintentionally benefiting the Enemy and at worst actively working for them. Antisemitic conspiracy theorists may, for instance, decide that Alex Jones is controlled opposition because he does not 'name the Jew'; conspiracy theorists more inclined to blame intelligence operatives, communists, or the CFR may call antisemites controlled opposition for distracting people with talk about Jewish conspiracies. Russiagate personalities have taken to calling every right-leaning conspiracy theorist controlled opposition—note that these allegations have some substantiation as Jones, the LaRouchites, and associated figures have demonstrable connections to RT, the Duginist network, and other unsavoury Russian elements. Note also that anti-Western conspiracy theorists are entirely correct in matters such as the existence of programmes such as COINTELPRO or Operation Gladio; the latter is much less well-known and discussion on it is largely ignored by the mainstream Western press, but its existence in various forms has been demonstrated and even admitted.
These truthful allegations do not matter, as the conspiracy theorist is not engaged in the business of uncovering suppressed facts as ve would insist, but in the repetition of a particular rhetorical structure. This structure as it exists today borrows elements from classic antisemitic tropes as well as from British and American security culture and from certain forms of academic historical revision as typified by Carroll Quigley. Aside from the antisemitic tropes, many of these other origins are respectable in their own right. It is their mixture and dilution into a particular structure of thinking that makes them conspiracy theory, thereby divorcing them from legitimate power analysis.
That structure is this: For a certain period of history, normal operations in a particular realm have been compromised. There is an organised group of people who have compromised this realm. This group manipulates the information regarding this realm in order to maintain the appearance of normality. However, they have particular signatures that give their activities away. The solution to this problem is personal awakening through a search for truth.
That last bit seems like it is incongruous with the rest but that is because it fulfils an important function in the structure. The conspiratorial structure is merely the inverse of technocratic liberalism and thus it reinforces the fundamental premise of capitalist realism: that there is no alternative. Where technocratic liberalism posits that existing institutions are basically good and that any problems with them are generally caused by bottom-up corruption, conspiracy liberalism instead begins, like radicalism, with the premise that existing institutions are basically corrupt and this corruption is thus top-down. The major difference between conspiracy liberalism and radicalism, however, is that the principles underlying these institutions are never questioned. The institutions thus require total restructuring to remove the malign influence but never truly radical change or abolition.
Thus, the conspiracy theorist takes on the function of controlled opposition to liberal society. Ve is not necessarily paid or controlled by the institutions ve rails against; in fact, this is most likely a very rare occurrence. Most conspiracy theorists are, in fact, relatively regular people. Rather, it is vis position of faux-radical posturing against institutions when in fact vis function is to safeguard them from truly radical critique that makes ver such. As August Bebel said, 'Antisemitism is the socialism of fools,' we may similarly say that conspiracy liberalism is the radicalism of fools.
Furthermore, the structure contains a important internal contradiction that underlies the logic of conspiracy liberalism. Let's take a moment to analyse a typical conspiratorial statement from a pseudonymous poster on a popular conspiracy forum:
I don't care who Q is, some saying he is an AI, some saying he's propaganda, etc... IF someone drops a name and I can go look up that person on my own, and see they are a bad person or into some shady shit, then that, to me is someone trying to get to the truth. You can't fool yourself if you do your own research.

The structure of this statement is personal and individualistic. It is framed in the first person, save for the last sentence, which is in the second person. The lack of third person language is important. It suggests not an impartial analysis of actually-happening events but rather a kind of occult initiation which happens through the personal transmission of information. The information making up the conspiracy theory is not presented as given factual information but rather takes the form of an arcane mystery. The message does not lie in the content of the conspiracy theory. The message lies in its form.
What, then, are we to do? The answer lies in the repetition of an idea that is phrased in three different ways. The first form is the phrase, phrased in first person, 'I can go look up that person on my own, and see that they are a bad person or into some shady shit'. The second, phrased in third person, is 'that […] is someone who is trying to get to the truth.' The third, which has become something of a meme to sceptics, is 'do your own research,' phrased in second person. As if it's a magical invocation, this thought is repeated thrice and in a different person each time, practically performing an alchemical transmutation.
The fact that it begins in first person and ends in third person is not coincidental, as this establishes a chain of initiation, a personal bond which is relevant to the propagation of the conspiracy structure. (This perhaps makes the conspiracy structure a good, if not perfect, example of a hyperstition: its purpose is primarily to repeat itself as much as possible.) The addition of the third person in between changes its form from the particular to the universal: not only are you and I trying to get to the truth, but anyone can try to get to the truth, and indeed, as the anonymous 'someone' suggests, it's a general law that there are people trying to get to the truth. Neither is the fact that it transitions from the third person in the middle to the second person at the end coincidental, for this immediately grounds and relates the universal back to the particular. You are joining with many others in a special journey of trying to get to the truth. Yet simultaneously this ends up being very individualist, as you must get to the truth by trusting your own intuition, your own judgement, your own research first and foremost. The neophyte is not expected to rely on the magus, but to become vis own magus.
This produces a fundamental contradiction. Although the conspiracy theory is presumed to be an objective and scientific body of information, access to it is primarily subjective and mystical. Thus the contradiction may be seen between the conspiracy theory as objective and final fact and the conspiracy theory as a subjective process of self-discovery.
Given the constant and unending nature of this self-discovery, the observed phenomenon of conspiracy theorists not being satisfied with one conspiracy theory but choosing to believe in many even when they contradict each other at the objective level begins to make sense as the necessary action of the subjective element of the conspiracy structure. In the structure, the objective element is subordinated to the subjective element. The 'search for truth' trumps the actual details of that truth, and as such the conspiracy structure draws into it all of history and all of culture as an attempt to satisfy this 'search'. The most sophisticated conspiracy theories are those which end up reinventing Gnosticism by positing the fundamental conspiracy as a metaphysical conspiracy—at this level, the nature of conspiracy liberalism as liberalism protecting itself against radical critique is fully disclosed, as the understanding of liberalism as natural law remains unchallenged and is, in fact, rendered fundamental. The conspiracy is no longer required to exist in a way that its existence can be proven by objective research, but it is shown to be a metaphysical construct which is presumed to exist before any evidence of it is presented. The only possible solution here is Buddhist-like transcendence of the world.
The conspiracy structure is endemic to liberalism; it is in fact required for liberalism to continue to reproduce itself. Although previously it was more moderated and empirical and helped to sustain republicanism, with the collapse of republican government and the triumph of technocratic liberalism, it has transmuted itself, joined with its purely reactionary twin, and become a stumbling block before those who would analyse systems and institutions for a truly radical critique.

Quick note

My views have changed quite a bit over the course of writing this blog, and as such, I no longer endorse many of the positions I used to. Much of the material on this blog is material that I now disagree with.
That said, I have no plans to quit blogging any time soon, and as a matter of fact, I've been planning to write more.
Thank you for being my friends and readers!

On a stroll

Originally written 31 July 2017 e.v..

The other day, I was walking my dog on my front lawn. She’s an English Mastiff; she’s very strong, and has dragged me onto the ground more than once.

So I remained careful. There were a couple of women across the street—a blonde and a brunette—discussing something I couldn’t hear nor care to. The brunette appeared to be dragging some sort of package.

As the two women said their farewells and parted ways, a man walking down the sidewalk stopped in front of the blonde’s house. He seemed jittery for some reason; he spoke loudly and with an obvious stutter. From what I could remember, he was speaking about the weather. The woman looked uncomfortable, but tried her best to remain amiable.

My dog tensed up when she saw him. The hair on her back didn’t rise, but, being a defensive creature, she was preparing for the worst.

The man finished up his conversation with the woman and continued walking. I paused to glance at the Sound—I couldn’t see Long Island, as there were too many trees in the way, but the water was starting to churn. It started to rain lightly.

The man walked in front of my house. ‘Hello,’ he said.

‘Hi,’ I responded.

My dog pulled on her leash; I instinctively tugged her back.

‘What kind of dog is that? Is it—is it a—a Bullmastiff?’ he asked.

‘She’s an English Mastiff.’

‘Oh, wow. She’s a big dog. A big dog.’

I noticed that he tended to repeat himself a lot.

‘Yeah.’

‘What’s his name?’

‘Her name’s Tifa,’ I told him.

‘Oh, wow. Nice name, pretty name. I like your dog. Is she a good dog?’

‘Yes, but she can be a bit of a hassle sometimes.’ I recalled the two previous times she had dragged me away to play with other dogs people were walking—the second time, a man had threatened to shoot me. (He apologised later, and we’re friends now.)

‘Oh, I bet. Very big dog, good dog.’ The rain was increasing in its intensity. ‘I love this rain. Do you like the rain?’

‘I love this kind of rain.’ I answered truthfully.

‘This rain is great. I love rain. Other people don’t like it, but I love it.’

‘Me too, but I have to take the dog in.’

‘Oh. Oh, okay. Nice dog, by the way. Take care.’

‘Take care,’ I replied.

‘You too.' He continued to talk—half to himself, half perhaps to someone who wasn’t there. ‘God, I love this weather. The rain is wonderful.’ He continued talking until I couldn’t hear him any more.

I thought about him as I walked the dog back inside. Neither the blonde woman nor the brunette woman seemed particularly happy. I, for sure, hadn’t been very happy. The news when I got inside was a stream of depression, with a break for a saccharine infomercial about a glorified sandwich press.

Yet this man—seemingly disconnected from the world around him—found utter joy in the rain, the gloomy suburban scenery, the simple act of talking to a neighbour about her dog.

Deleuze and Guattari say in Anti-Oedipus: ‘It is not the slumber of reason that engenders monsters, but vigilant and insomniac rationality.’ The man I had met on the street that day had nothing monstrous about him; for him, everything went about its business. He saw all the machines, and they were connected to him.

He heard the continual whirr of machines all about him. And he was happy with that.

The truth about college safe spaces and campus culture wars

[Content note: gets a little sexually and violently graphic.]
Twitter mobs are spreading social media outrage to shout down and silence controversial viewpoints.What would Martin Luther King, Jr. say? He would not admonish us for "white privilege"; no, he would repudiate the postmodern, post-Marxist illiberal left and say, 'No, we must defend Enlightenment values against censorship, smears, and tribalism. We cannot take the attitude of tribal identity.'
Indeed, we must step out of our safe spaces, stop being "woke" and playing oppression Olympics for a minute so that we can confront discomfort, not try to banish it with speech codes that threaten due process or trigger warnings. Truly, it feels almost as if liberalism has been replaces by Stalinism, the left rejecting freedom of speech for Twitter mobs spreading discomfort. The one who waits behind the wall. All of this is a perfect example of the darkness that is being waged upon our college campuses.
The goat with a thousand young rejected in favour of political correctness and manufactured hellscapes writhing with the blood of the slain innocent. To be torn apart limb from limb and consumed whole by the social media mobs, that is what the cultural Marxist ideologues of our aeon have been summoning, the worshipful death of time itself.
If only we had not despised the inmost light, we wouldn't be in this mess, but you can thank Clinton for that. He encouraged a culture of oppressor/oppressed dichotomies and echo chambers. Shit, I'm a devout liberal, what am I even saying? That is what the SJWs have done: they do not understand the enormity of the powers they have called forth. If we do not give up our delusions of Foucault and aspirations to "patriarchy", we will be crucified upon our own spines. The Greeks taught discomfort. The Babylonians taught total depravity. Hillary Clinton shat out the college campus with a fork. What is going on in our universities today?
We should know not to point fingers like the illiberal whoremongers who continue to protrude like erect penises from the landscape. The great menstrual mother will forsake us if we dare play oppression Olympics before her. This is the end my only friend. This is it. Good night. Good night. The real issue here is the silencing of Jordan Peterson. Sure, his archetypal stories about the child murdering his father and slitting his throat and sucking the blood sound odd to the untrained ears, but how can we be sure of the hell of other people if we do not know what they are in the grand scheme and law of the great metacosmos?
I say we return to liberalism, return to the Enlightenment, and submit. There is nothing wrong with that. Offense Tribal identity Elites Hail Hail Hail Heil Hail him, the one and only thing I learned from school back then was to keep your mouth SHUT. KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT.

Liking neofolk does not make you fascist-adjacent

One of the common misconceptions about neofolk, held by its detractors and the fascist subset of its fans alike, is that it represents some kind of 'neo-völkisch' music—a new form of ethnic music specific to Europeans that celebrates 'European culture' and glorifies white identity. While some acts in the neofolk scene undoubtedly do produce music that does exactly that, it's not inherent to the genre, and that's not where it gets its name.
Neofolk was born out of post-punk; one critic remarked that early Death in June sounded like 'Joy Division with horns'. Originally, it was post-punk music with the electric guitar replaced by acoustic, more or less, with some neofolk continuing to follow this formula and some stripping it down even more. (One thing that distinguishes neofolk from other forms of acoustic guitar-based music is that it uses the studio as an instrument; reverb is omnipresent in neofolk.)
Post-punk was originally called 'new musick'; given these origins, it makes sense to call this form of music 'new folk music', or 'neofolk'. That's the origin of the genre and a plausible origin of the name. Given that, it's hard to say that neofolk is an inherently fascist genre, especially given the lack of fascist proclivities on the part of many of its major performers.
For Current 93, the lack of fascism is self-evident: David 'I will not rest until I have collaborated with every trans musician in existence' Tibet seems to be an anarchist, as he coined the term 'anarcho-punk' in 1984 in his capacity as a music journalist and has collaborated with anarchists and anti-capitalists such as Steve Ignorant (using the moniker Stephen Intelligent), Jhonn Balance and Peter Christopherson of Coil, Björk, Genesis Breyer P-Orridge and other members of Throbbing Gristle and Psychic TV, and Anohni. Michael Cashmore of both Current 93 and his own project Nature and Organisation works a lot in the anarchist spaces within chaos magic, working with DKMU materials. Steven Stapleton of Nurse with Wound also worked with P-Orridge and has stated that his dream collaboration would be with Missy Elliott, known as a feminist rapper.
Tony Wakeford of Sol Invictus, although he spent less than a year in the National Front, has repudiated racism, fascism, and anything to do with them and has stated it was 'probably the worse [sic] decision of my life and one I very much regret'. In a 2012 interview with Souciant, a leftist magazine, he stated:
As for what [the neofolk scene] is now, I’m not that comfortable with parts of it. Some “artists” seem to be in it for overtly party political reasons and frankly I have no interest in playing on the same bill or being connected to cranks who hang out with Holocaust deniers, and shill for Islamist bigots, etc. Thankfully, the far right in Britain at the moment are pathetic, but in certain other parts of the world, they are a lot more dangerous. Individuals can believe what they like, and I am against censorship and banning, but when people are getting killed for who they sleep with, or having the wrong stamp in their passport, I think it’s maybe time for a little less ambiguity? Rant over.

As well, Renée Rosen, Sol Invictus' violinist and Tony's wife, is Jewish, and the Sol Invictus song 'Down the Years' could be taken as a sardonic commentary on fascism and how demagogues are able to get people to demand their own oppression, while on their recent album The Cruellest Month, they have an anarchist-sounding song, 'To Kill All Kings', seemingly referencing old protosocialist peasant rebellions, and a cover of the labour organising song 'The Blackleg Miner'.
Douglas P. of Death in June is, in my opinion, based on the hours of research I've done poring over old interviews and even investigating old details of his trip to Croatia (where he did not, in fact, donate to a fascist military hospital, but to a university hospital that treated anyone of any side in the conflict), is an edgy libertarian. He seems to revel in confusing people as to his actual positions; contrast the very fascist-sounding song 'Death of the West' with 'Lullaby to a Ghetto', a chilling denunciation of Holocaust denialism ('So this is your life. / This is your world, / in a lullaby to a ghetto / where you murder boys and girls'). His response to a question of whether 'race matter[s]' was that he preferred to suck white, uncircumcised cock, but otherwise didn't care. He's cited Motown and Leonard Cohen as influences, but has also called himself 'very Eurocentric'. And even 'Rose Clouds of Holocaust' could be taken to be about the Germans being shown the extermination camps ('When the ashes of life / fall down from the skies: / rose clouds of holocaust, / rose clouds of lies'); such an interpretation is showcased in this fanmade video:

Furthermore, some more recent projects in the neofolk scene have explicitly declared their opposition to fascism: Die Weisse Rose takes its name from Sophie Scholl's nonviolent resistance group, while its frontman, Thomas Bøjden, is friends with Douglas P. and Kim Larsen of :Of the Wand and the Moon:, who has also been interviewed by Souciant; Jérôme Reuter of his project Rome has explicitly criticised racism and fascism, released an album, Flowers from Exile, about the Spanish Republicans in the Civil War, and has an excellent martial-industrial song, 'Die Brandstifter', directly criticising fascism; Sieben has a song, 'Rite Against the Right', mocking neo-Nazis; and Sean Ragon of Cult of Youth, in an interview with Noisey, clarifies that he is not a fascist and that his perspective is that industrial and post-industrial music, including neofolk, is fundamentally about a 'deprogramming' from the dominant ideology through shock elements.
And in case nothing else I've said convinces anyone, I learned something from black metal that needs to be applied to neofolk: you can separate the art from the artist. Varg Vikernes is an outspoken neo-fascist, yet his black metal project Burzum is considered to be classic and his albums practically canonical for black metal. Even RABM musicians acknowledge their debt to Burzum.
Enjoying a musician shouldn't be taken as an endorsement of their worldview. I'm a Christian, yet I enjoy the music of Dissection and Watain, which were/are both Anti-Cosmic Chaos-Gnostic Satanist bands, as well as of Sol Invictus and Death in June, both of which have been very critical of Christianity. And plenty of people enjoy the music of Wagner, myself included, while still understanding that he was an antisemite and protofascist, and D. W. Griffith and Leni Riefenstahl are both extremely important directors and Birth of a Nation and Triumph of the Will both extremely important films despite the directors' politics and their films' subjects.
So don't let anyone tell you that you're a fascist based on aesthetic enjoyment alone. Take my own music: it sometimes sounds like it could be fascist, like these two songs:


Yet the first is an Italian Partisan song and the second (co-produced with Michael Orion Powell-Deschamps as Tilhas) is about the guilt of an ex-Nazi. (You can subscribe on Patreon to hear more songs from The Idols Have Been Cast Down and Rent every Monday until it's released on 30 April, Walpurgisnacht.)
Take what you will from that.

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