Life                      -                    Death
Together               -                   Apart
Include                 -                    Exclude
Profane                 -                    Sacred
Everything            -                    Something

Liberalism tends to place emphasis on the individual and on the universal collective that contains all individuals. Groupings - those intermediary levels between the individual and the global collective - are generally deemphasised, or discouraged.

By its nature a group is exclusionary, defining its identity as much by what it is not as what it is. The more vivid the identity of the group, the firmer its boundaries. Because liberalism is predicated on the notion of individual freedom and autonomy, and on the free flow of goods, services, ideas, and people within a universal, global market, it must work against anything that may inhibit this flow. In this context, groupings - with their localised customs and norms - act as circuit breakers, impeding the wider flow.

Accordingly, liberalism tends to focus on the restrictive aspect of groupings, characterising them as systems of oppression that place unnecessary and tyrannical inhibitions on the individual. The project of liberalism is to dissolve the boundaries of the group and to set the individual free within the global market - in other words, to maximise flow. Groupings are permitted to the extent that they do not impede this flow in any serious way.

Liberalism points out that groupings are artefacts of culture, rather than nature, and that our natural state is as autonomous individuals. Groupings are, in other words, constructions. They may once have served a purpose, but most are old relics that can be deconstructed.

When the idea of the group loses its positive meaning then to be ensconced unthinkingly within a group becomes pathological - ‘groupthink.’ The modern person must seek autonomy and is encouraged at all times to think ‘for themselves’, independently of custom and local norms, and to question received wisdom.

What the Globalist wants is maximum flow, at the largest scale. Everything flowing at all times, with no circuit breakers.

Nothing settled, or static; only constant consumption, change, movement. 'Prosperity lies in spending, not in saving.'

Any ideas that help maximise flow are welcome; any that hinder flow are unwelcome.

More flow means more wealth and power. A settled culture - with traditions that persevere over time, rather than fashions and technologies that are in a constant state of change - is a hindrance to flow, and to the accumulation of wealth and power.

We can't scale down because this would require borders and constraints on the flow, along with restrictions on technology.

Once upon a time borders played a significant role: they guaranteed the continuation of collective identities. Today, borders no longer guarantee anything and halt (almost) nothing.

Flows of all kinds are the hallmark of our time, making borders redundant.

[Alain De Benoist]
'The European New Right Forty Years Later,' The Occidental Quaterly, vol. 9, no. 1, Spring 2009, p. 72

Group cooperation requires identification and solidarity, which are undermined by too much diversity. 

Liberals emphasize the latter, whereas Traditionalists emphasize the former.

Traditional religion has played a crucial role in the development of group solidarity, which is responsible for cultural-social vitality and commitment to the future. Hence, Haidt says that the decline of religion in modern society might have devastating consequences.

[Michael Zimmerman]
'The Republican Advantage'

The first step forward is that from school-age upward our societies must reassert a shared national narrative—including a common national culture.

Some years ago the German Muslim writer Bassam Tibi coined the term "Leitkultur"—core culture—to describe this. It is the most decent and properly liberal antidote to multiculturalism.

It concedes that in societies that have had high immigration there are all sorts of different cultures—which will only work together if they are united by a common theme.

[Douglas Murray]
'Cameron's Multicultural wake-up call'

Maastricht seeks to create a supranational, centralised, bureaucratic state - a homogenised union. It would destroy the pillars on which Europe was built – its nations. 

It would convert Europe into one multicultural space, in which national identities would be fused and sovereignty abandoned. It would coerce ancient European nations to merge into the ultimate artificial state. 

As George Orwell remarked, it is characteristic of intellectuals to pass over in incomprehension the dominant political passion of the age. Today, that passion is the search for national identity. And this is the moment when European ruling elites are seeking to destroy the identity of every European nation.

[James Goldsmith]
The Trap, p. 62

Tolerant? Oh, God. Yes, I know - that's what they drum into you at school.

No, Blake was not very tolerant. He didn't even think tolerance was a good thing. It was just more slobbering. He thought it blurred all the outlines and muddled everything - that it made all cats gray. So that nobody would be able to see anything clearly and sharply.

[Gregory Bateson]
Steps to an Ecology of Mind, p. 28

Tolerance                      -                    Justice
Agreeableness               -                   Conscientiousness
Anything                       -                    Something

Those who proclaim the virtues of tolerance believe that they’re tolerant but generally that’s not the case. They just don’t want to accept the responsibility that playing by the rules would bring.

And being useless and unable to move towards a valuable goal and failing to hold anyone else accountable as a consequence of their equivalent failures does not make you tolerant, it just makes you unable to move forward in the world in any productive manner.

We know that these two axis of value - tolerance and justice - are associated with two cardinal personality traits: one is agreeableness and the other is conscientiousness.

People on the radical left - politically correct people - tend to be very high in agreeableness but they tend to be very low in conscientiousness. And that begs the question whether or not their tolerance is a consequence of their avowed love of other people or their hatred for the fact that any structured society requires adherence to a shared set of ordered beliefs and the capacity for people to compete within those ordered beliefs to attain success or victory.

[Jordan B. Peterson]
'Tolerance as a vice'

Nationalists feel a bond with their country, and they believe that this bond imposes moral obligations both ways: Citizens have a duty to love and serve their country, and governments are duty bound to protect their own people. Governments should place their citizens interests above the interests of people in other countries.

There is nothing necessarily racist or base about this arrangement or social contract. Having a shared sense of identity, norms, and history generally promotes trust. Having no such shared sense leads to the condition that the sociologist Émile Durkheim described as “anomie” or normlessness.

The trick [...] is figuring out how to balance reasonable concerns about the integrity of one’s own community with the obligation to welcome strangers, particularly strangers in dire need.

[Jonathan Haidt]
'When and Why Nationalism Beats Globalism'

To this day, our lives are largely spent in drawing boundaries. Every decision we make, our every action, our every word is based on the construction, conscious or unconscious, of boundaries. To make a decision means to draw a boundary line between what to choose and what not to choose. To desire something means to draw a boundary line between pleasurable and unpleasurable things and then move toward the former [...]

Every boundary line is a potential battle line, so that just to draw a boundary is to prepare oneself for conflict. Specifically, the agonizing fight of life against death, pleasure against pain, good against evil […] but in seeking to experience the positive and eliminate the negative, we forget that the positive is defined only in terms of the negative. To destroy the negative is, at the same time, to destroy all possibility of enjoying the positive. The root of the whole difficulty is our tendency to view the opposites as irreconcilable, as totally set apart and divorced from one another.

While it is true that buying and selling are in some sense different… they are also—and this is the point—completely inseparable. In other words, buying and selling are simply two ends of one event, namely, a business transaction. In just the same way, all opposites share an implicit identity. That is, however vividly the differences between these opposites may strike us, they nevertheless remain completely inseparable and mutually interdependent, and for the simple reason that one could not exist without the other [...]

[Ken Wilber]
No Boundary, p. 18, 21-2

 Contact is not simply a matter of joining or togetherness, but involves a heightened awareness of the distinction between self and not-self;

in other words, contact occurs at a porous boundary, one that holds self and other apart, but at the same time permits interaction and exchange [...]

“The contact boundary is the point at which one experiences the ‘me’ in relation to that which is ‘not me’ and through this contact, both are more clearly experienced”

[Herb Stevenson]
'Paradox: A Gestalt Theory of Change'

Every ‘good' scientific theory is a prohibition: it forbids certain things to happen. The more a theory forbids, the better it is.

[Karl Popper]

All societies draw on nationalism of one sort or another to define relations between the state, the citizen and the outside world.

Craig Calhoun, an American sociologist, argues that cosmopolitan elites, who sometimes yearn for a post-nationalist order, underestimate “how central nationalist categories are to political and social theory—and to practical reasoning about democracy, political legitimacy and the nature of society itself.”

["I don’t mean that we should prefer nationalist accounts, but rather that we should take them seriously and see how deeply imbricated they are in our conceptual frameworks rather than trying to wish them away."]

'League of nationalists', with further quote from Craig Calhoun, Nations Matter: Culture, History and the Cosmopolitan Dream, p. 8

Another image to which [analysts of postmodernity] return is the collapse of boundaries.

Not just the boundaries between real and unreal, right and wrong, matter and spirit, but the boundaries between people, individually and collectively. In this regard Deleuze refers to “the end of enclosure”.

The fences which we once constructed around our community, our profession, our gender, our economy, our culture, our nation, our humanity, are in the process of disappearing, and this disappearance is a source of anxiety and grief.

We might suggest that [nationalism] has its roots in this grief. The people to whom [its] message appeals are grieving at the loss of the enclosures which once defined who they were and what was their purpose in life. A globalized, multicultural society threatens their reason for being.

It is not surprising that it is in rural communities that the loss is felt most keenly and that [support for nationalist ideas] is strongest.

[Bernie Neville]
Out of Our Depth and Treading Water: Reflections on Consciousness, Culture and New Learning Technologies'

We concluded that only a gradually accruing sense of identity, based on the experience of social health and cultural solidarity at the end of each major childhood crisis, promises that periodical balance in human life which - in integration of the ego stages - makes for a sense of humanity.

But wherever this sense is lost, wherever integrity yields to despair and disgust, wherever generativity yields to stagnation, intimacy to isolation, and identity to confusion, an array of associated infantile fears are apt to become mobilized: for only an identity safely anchored in the 'patrimony' of a cultural identity can produce a workable psychosocial equilibrium.

Industrial revolution, world-wide communication, standardization, centralization, and mechanization threaten the identities which man has inherited from primitive, agrarian, feudal, and patrician cultures.

What inner equilibrium these cultures had to offer is now endangered on a gigantic scale. As the fear of loss of identity dominates much of our irrational motivation, it calls upon the whole arsenal of anxiety which is left in each individual from the mere fact of his childhood. In this emergency masses of people become ready to seek salvation in pseudo-identities.

I have indicated only by a few suggestions that the anxieties outlined reach into adult life, and this not only in the form of neurotic anxiety, which, after all, is recognisable as such, kept in bounds by most, and can be cured in some. More terrifyingly, they reappear in the form of collective panics and in afflictions of the collective mind.

The rapid spread of communication and the increasing knowledge of cultural relativity endanger people who are in marginal position, people who are traumatically exposed to a numerical increase or the closer proximity or the greater power of others-than-themselves.

Among such people the drive for tolerance has its point of diminishing returns: it causes anxiety. 

Similarly, the drive for judiciousness is by no means as immediately conducive to civic peace or, for that matter, to mental health as the new American peace ship 'Mental Hygiene' would have us believe: for the tolerant appraisal of other identities endangers one's own.

[Erik H. Erikson]
Childhood and Society, p. 371-2, 377

This radical transformation of the population of America has taken place with incredible speed. There has been large-scale legal as well as illegal immigration (the latter estimated at between 2 and 3 million each year). What is more, the immigrant peoples, once installed, have a higher birth-rate. 

The twentieth-century writers Oakeshottlo and Santayanall believed that one of the disasters which can befall any community is that its shared understandings, in other words its common culture, be dissipated in too rapid or too sweeping change.

You do not mean to imply that a nation cannot integrate foreigners?

Of course not. Indeed, nations need new blood and new ideas. 

But they can only absorb a limited amount at a time. They cannot allow themselves to be overwhelmed by immigration otherwise they will lose their identity and cease to be nations. 

Newcomers who are welcomed into a nation should want to honour and respect the customs of their new home. 

[James Goldsmith]
The Trap, p. 51, 59

Submarines are built with watertight compartments, so that a leak in one area will not spread and sink the whole vessel. Now that we have globalised the world’s economy, the protective compartments no longer exist. Thus, we have globalised problems. 

A crisis in Mexico has become a ‘potential world catastrophe’.

[James Goldsmith]
The Response, p. 97

The politicians and technocrats who govern us […] find it difficult to distinguish between a nation and a commercial enterprise. Often, they describe their own country as though it were a company, for example, UK plc.

[…] the belief of our power elites [is that the] world economy is to be run for the benefit of footloose corporations, not to serve the fundamental requirements of communities throughout the world.

We know that there are now two different and conflicting economies, the corporate economy and the national economy. Is society going to continue to accept that its true needs are subservient to the interests of the corporate economy? Or will we bring harmony to the two, so that they both prosper within a home economy respectful of free enterprise?

[James Goldsmith]
The Response, p. 119-20

The idolatry of giantism that I have talked about is possibly one of the causes and certainly one of the effects of modern technology, particularly in matters of transport and communications. A highly developed transport and communications system has one immensely powerful effect: it makes people footloose

Everything in the world has to have a structure, otherwise it is chaos. 

Before the advent of mass transport and mass communications, the structure was simply there, because people were relatively immobile […] There were communications, there was mobility, but no footlooseness. 

Now previously, before this technological intervention, the relevance of frontiers was almost exclusively political and dynastic; frontiers were delimitations of political power, determining how many people you could raise for war. Economists fought against such frontiers becoming economic barriers – hence the ideology of free trade. But, then, people and things were not footloose: transport was expensive enough so that movements, both of people and of goods, were never more than marginal. 

Trade in the pre-industrial era was not a trade in essentials, but a trade in precious stones, precious metals, luxury goods, spices and - unhappily - slaves. The basic requirements of life had of course to be indigenously produced. And the movement of populations, except in periods of disaster, was confined to persons who had a very special reason to move, such as the Irish saints or the scholars of the University of Paris.

But now everything and everybody has become mobile. All structures are threatened, and all structures are vulnerable to an extent that they have never been before.

Economics, which Lord Keynes had hoped would settle down as a modest occupation similar to dentistry, suddenly becomes the most important subject of all […] It tends to absorb the whole of ethics and to take precedence over all other human considerations. Now, quite clearly, this is a pathological development, which has, of course, many roots, but one of its clearly visible roots lies in the great achievements of modern technology in terms of transport and communications.

While people, with an easy-going kind of logic, believe that fast transport and instantaneous communications open up a new dimension of freedom (which they do in some rather trivial respects), they overlook the fact that these achievements also tend to destroy freedom, by making everything extremely vulnerable and extremely insecure, unless conscious policies are developed and conscious action is taken, to mitigate the destructive effects of these technological developments.

[E.F. Schumacher]
Small is Beautiful, p. 57-8

Within any field of human interest, liberty is a necessary condition of scientific advance. This follows because science can proceed only where there is complete freedom to advance hypotheses contrary to prevailing opinion.

Pareto, indeed, considers liberty to be an indispensable requirement of scientific method: “It follows that before a theory can be considered true, it is virtually indispensable that there be perfect freedom to impugn it. Any limitation, even indirect and however remote, imposed on anyone choosing to contradict it is enough to cast suspicion upon it.

Hence freedom to express one's thought, even counter to the opinion of the majority or of all, even when it offends the sentiments of the few or of the many, even when it is generally reputed absurd or criminal, always proves favorable to the discovery of objective truth." […]

Experience seems to show that, almost always, liberty is a condition for an advanced “level of civilization," in the sense that Mosca uses this expression. That is, liberty is needed to permit the fullest release of the potential social forces and creative impulses present in society, and their maximum development.

[James Burnham]
The Machiavellians: Defenders of Freedom, p.222

[…] no society can discover an order without a concept of what is normal and what is right. Conceptually, the normal is unromantic because every norm destroys the occasional license of the romantic.

In the face of a normative concept, even the romantic qualities of antithesis and contrast break down. The courage of a brave man is not the higher unity formed from depression and exaltation. The rationally ordered state is not a synthesis of anarchy and despotism.

As such, legal ideas are unromantic in the same way. 

Viewed romantically, injustice is only a dissonance that is aesthetically resolved “in a sacred music, an endless feeling of the higher life.” This is not spoken in a metaphorical sense, but rather in the only category that is accessible to the experience of the romantic.

That is why there is neither a romantic law nor a romantic ethics, just as it would be confused to speak of a lyrical or a musical ethics.

[Carl Schmitt]
Political Romanticism, p. 161

A core feature of liberal philosophy and politics is recognition of the arbitrariness of almost every border.

This runs as a golden thread in considerations not only of the political understanding of borders-primarily national borders—but of any existing differentiation, distinction, boundary, and delineation, all of which come under suspicion as arbitrarily limiting individual freedom of choice.

All such “borders” are interrogated for their arbitrariness, and few can ultimately withstand the pressure of such interrogation - even those that are not arbitrary but are nevertheless limiting. Borders and boundaries based in geography, history, and nature must increasingly be erased under the logic of liberalism.

[Patrick J. Deneen]
Why Liberalism Failed, p.xviii

The global circulation of commodities, information, and populations, far from making everyone affluent, has widened the gap between rich and poor nations and generated a massive migration to the West, where the newcomers swell the vast army of the homeless, unemployed, illiterate, drug ridden, derelict, and effectively disfranchised.

Their presence strains existing resources to the breaking point. Medical and educational facilities, law enforcement agencies, and the available supply of jobs to mention the supply of racial tolerance and goodwill, never abundant to begin with—all appear inadequate to the enormous task of assimilating what is essentially a surplus or "redundant" population, in the cruelly expressive British phrase.

[Christopher Lasch]
The True and Only Heaven, p.169

According to the editor of the New Age, A. R. Orage, the reduction of labor to a commodity - the essence of "wagery" - required the elimination of all the social bonds that prevented the free circulation of labor.

The destruction of the medieval guilds, the replacement of local government by a centralized bureaucracy, the weakening of family ties, and the emancipation of women amounted to "successive steps in the... cheapening of the raw material of labor," all achieved under the "watchword" of progress.

Since wage labor depended on the "progressive shattering to atoms of our social system," those who opposed it would have to make the unions into agencies of social cohesion and civic trust.

[Christopher Lasch]
The True and Only Heaven, p.321

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