Anti-modernity manifesto

I mistrust all parties and factions. My politics is quiet resignation to ever greater blunders, hideousness, and beastliness garlanded with neon advertisements that announce: ‘Happiness!’, ‘Freedom!’, and ‘Progress!’

Here are my proposals:

  1. There is considerable pleasure in watching the inessential in life deliquesce into nothingness.
  2. Plastic is evil because it resists erosion. Plastic is perverted conservatism, a man-made object that parodies eternal values through an obsecenely long life that brings death to the natural, the beautiful.
  3. I want to set the clock back to before there was a clock.
  4. For every movement forward there is a loss.
  5. Aristocratic politics is best. But the aristocrats are gone. Their traditions are lost. And these cannot simply be reconstituted through aggressiveness, braggadocio, or careful study. True aristocrats have forgotten what they are.
  6. Televised eternity: Kings, queens, thrones, and wizards — aristocracy and the unchanging values. Men are men. Women are women. Orcs are orcs. The Great Chain of Being is unbroken. But no matter how many sentimental films and television series are produced on this theme we are not there. We can get an impression of a shadow’s impression — enough to keep us coming back.
  7. We live in a society that confuses an increase in power with progress.
  8. Only anti-moderns know how to laugh joyfully. Those who believe in socialism, progress, capitalism, liberalism and so on can only laugh with spite and envy, which is why situation comedies and stand up comics are both so prevalent and generally run on resentful humour.
  9. The best we can hope for is that the degradation will be painless. As with the almost dead on a hospital ward, we may be fortunate enough to die with a large injection of diamorphine.
  10. The greatest fools worry about ‘the rise of China’. China is in fact sick with our disease. Their symptoms are merely less advanced — though the prognosis is worse.
  11. Islam has moved to Europe to die. Fortunately, we have excellent graveyards.
  12. If one pays enough attention it is clear that in countries such as the United Kingdom people are pigs snuffling among former achievements. Everything that is new in these countries — architecture, fiction, films — has no traction and will rot into nothingness because it is built with contempt. Hence, the worst Brutalist architecture endures like a plastic bag — somehow it does not even need replacing. Only the best Brutalism is demolished!
  13. Our new buildings are all glass now because we have become so debased, so animal-like that privacy — the gateway to the sacred — provokes anxiety.
  14. An anti-modern retreats from the world and lets a garden cultivate him. Nature is the great anti-modern and has a final veto on human folly. Those who believe that through political action that they can improve the situation are deluded.
  15. Mass politics and mass enfranchisement was a terrible mistake. It opened the way for communism, nationalism, fascism, and Nazism along with the modest sisters known as the ‘moderate’ parties.
  16. Every -ism communism, socialism, liberalism, conservatism, fascism, Nazism, capitalism, feminism, Thatcherism, neoliberalism, racism, Islamism, sexism, Buddhism, globalism, corporatism, libertarianism, atheism is untrue.
  17. The problem with the above ideas lies in the suffix, which in fact determines the whole.
  18. We are asked to worship science even though it has never built any decent temples.
  19. For every life saved by penicillin, the atom bomb can take five away.
  20. Irony for imperialism: Once the French set Cambodia free their universities set about educating the Cambodian revolutionary cadres who would implement Year Zero. Fear the French imperialist, but fear the French anti-imperialists more so!
  21. France needs to be quarantined.
  22. Every time I read about the Parti Communiste Français, I think about the Killing Fields transported to the Loire Valley.

[Note to the reader: I first published this as ‘A conservative manifesto’ (not the political party in the UK, but in the sense of general conservatism) last year. But, on reflection, I realised the manifesto is not so much conservative as anti-modernity.]

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