I feel it’s really unfortunate that so few anti-government blogs have commented on these cases. While the crimes themselves may be more sordid than historic, the entire incident is a fresh fillet of wild history – to be grilled and served now, while it’s still twitching.
But wait. Who are these people? What did they do, and why did they do it?
At present, everyone not in a Faraday cage on the dark side of Mars knows who James von Brunn is. But since here at UR we always write sub specie aeternitas, James von Brunn is an 88-year-old retired Navy officer who attacked the Holocaust Museum in Washington with a .22 rifle, killing a security guard and getting shot in the head in return. And earning the wall-to-wall coverage of which he perhaps dreamed.
Why? Some of his writings are online:
We fought two disastrous wars for the JEWS against Christian Aryan Germany. It is time to pay the piper. IT WILL HURT BADLY as North America and the Caribbean become ONE STATE within a ZIONIST GLOBAL EMPIRE.
Mr. von Brunn has a punchy diction which Judge Sotomayor could learn a lot from, and shares her interest in race, ethnicity, history and public policy. His grammar is better. She prevails on tone, typography and general sanity. As for content, perhaps a debate could be held. If Mr. von Brunn succumbs to his sucking head wound, a stand-in can be found any day at Stormfront.
(UR, of course, is a pro-Jew blog – not popular with this segment, to say the least. Anti-Jew comments are hereby prohibited, as are anything smacking of a personality cult. I’m sure everyone has heard enough from you Nazi swine, and it is simply bad form to praise anyone in his own comments section. Enforcement is on the honor system, as always.)
On July 7, 2007, at approximately 7:15 p.m. at Jefferson and M Street, Northwest, in Washington, D.C., defendant was walking down the street making offensive remarks when he encountered the complainant, Ms. [REDACTED], who is African-American. The defendant uttered, “Nigger,” as he delivered a karate chop to Ms. [REDACTED]’s head.
Alas, this progressive has it exactly right. Marcus Epstein is a racist. His inner self has impressed itself on the public record. He will always be McGregor the pigfscker. He might as well find a way to relax and enjoy it, preferably one that doesn’t involve attacking museums.
(Watch Bay Buchanan, most nobly, defend him. Look at the comments on the article. This is Marcus Epstein’s future. A friend of mine told me of a fellow freshman who in orientation at Stanford, in the late ’90s, cracked some mildly racist joke. He was socially ostracized for his entire four years. For the rest of his career, Epstein will be employed by racists, or by no one. Very reminiscent of, say, Czechoslovakia in the ’70s.)
Now: not every wingnut is a reactionary (I’m sure both von Brunn and Epstein, for very different reasons, would be horrified by UR), but every reactionary is a wingnut. Like it or not. And needless to say, wingnuts should want to talk about James von Brunn and Marcus Epstein, because here is a rare case of wingnuts in the news.
You’ll notice that when the Times does a story on hang gliding, or whatever, the hang-gliding community is buzzing about it for weeks. When normal people see people like them described in the news, they find the experience highly informative and worthy of discussion.
Indeed, it often tells them more about the news than about themselves. And this indeed is our case today. It’s not quite the same when normal people see abnormal people, who have some things in common with normal people except that they’re abnormal, in the news – but it’s close. Are there normal wingnuts? Yes, Ms. Beria, there are. They all read UR, or at least Steve.
And as for the abnormal ones, there is certainly no covering them up! This is yet another department in which, yet again, the right fails by adopting the tactics of the left. The left can cover things up by ignoring them. When the left stonewalls, it works. When the right tries to stonewall, it is creepy and pathetic. More on this in a little.
So as students of current history, how shall we evaluate these crimes – obviously, there can be no dispute that they were crimes – and the criminals behind them? What is the story here?
The first question we have to answer is: are these crimes important? If they are important, public attention is appropriately directed at important matters. If they are not important, public attention is inappropriately directed at unimportant matters. Which is important – so the events belong in our history, either way.
(Epstein’s case has received little attention from the true press so far – one mention only in this gloriously-Vyshinskyesque Times column. But this may be due only to the delicate matter of the “obtained” documents, or other mysterious media internals. I expect to see more around the sentencing, and obviously the incident will be a permanent millstone for Tom Tancredo.)
When testing the importance of a crime, we have two tests. Is the crime itself, alone, important? Or, if not, does its historical context render it important?
First, let’s consider the crimes, alone. Here is what happened. In Washington in 2007, a young drunk man was walking down the street cursing, and hit a random bystander. In Washington in 2009, a deranged old man brought a hunting rifle to a museum and shot a security guard.
We see instantly that when we describe the crimes, alone, they are – while certainly crimes – of little actual importance. Any public shooting is certainly a news event, and von Brunn’s age alone perhaps provides a certain human-interest factor. This perhaps could qualify for a clip, segment or bus-plunge clipping.
But while perhaps interesting in this sense, there is certainly no sense in which von Brunn’s crime – alone – could be described as important. A crazy, pointless murder in Washington, DC? It may not happen every day. But it happens every other day.
As for Epstein’s crime – getting drunk and slapping someone on the street – it does happen every day. (Despite the “karate chop,” any actual injury to the victim would surely be reported. My guess is that Epstein is not, in fact, a karate master, and his actual wasted intent was to pretend to karate-chop his unfortunate victim. But it would be nice to hear his side sometime.) Any record that incorporates any such crime – alone – is no history, but a police blotter.
We cannot consider the crime without the criminal. If an important person commits an unimportant crime, the event remains important. If Barack Obama got drunk and slapped someone on the street, it would be important.
James von Brunn was certainly not important. Marcus Epstein is a staffer, possibly the only staffer, at a tiny right-wing PAC on the outer fringes of legitimate politics. Not much importance here. Indeed, is this crime – alone – important enough to change Marcus Epstein’s life, as described above?
If a friend of yours (I do not know Marcus Epstein) got wasted, and slapped and cursed at some random woman on the street, what would you say? “I disown you, Marcus, I hope you will fall into ignominy and despair, return to drink and kill yourself. How could you get wasted, and slap and curse at some random woman on the street? What if you were just walking down the street, and a drunk person cursed and slapped you? Please, Marcus, never speak to me again.”
So far, this analysis does not tell us that these crimes are unimportant. It tells us that they are not important of themselves. In historical context, however, they may remain quite important.
How can a crime be unimportant in itself, but important in historical context? It must be part of a pattern of crimes. Each crime is unimportant, but the pattern is relevant. The pattern has weight, meaning, power; it moves the course of history. And thus it must be noted; to omit it is a distortion. And thus an unimportant crime may be worthy of notice, because it may be noticed to illustrate the pattern.
Since we’re already on the subject of Hitler, there’s no better example but the pattern of street crime committed by the Sturmabteilung in the pre-1933 period. (Note the real, ie non-Nazi, meaning of the word – basically, special forces. The hideously-comical nature of the early NSDAP is already visible in this appropriation.)
That some SA-Mann bashed some Communist over the head with a stein, making him see so double he could read Marx and Engels at the same time: not important. That well before 1933, the NSDAP intimidated its opponents by physical force: important.
In short, the crimes of the SA were political crimes. Both today’s crimes must be at least candidates for this status. Like the Nazis, both these individuals hold unusual political views which contrast sharply with the views of the majority. It is certainly at least plausible to suspect the possibility of political crime.
Political crime is a serious matter because it reflects directly on the cohesion of the state. In any stable sovereign, cumbersome and byzantine though it may be, the imperium maius in all cases rests perfectly within some internal organ (in our case, the Supreme Court). No power can or does challenge the physical authority of this sovereign organ.
State security in this sense is absolute and boolean, like all security. Any systematic breach in it is a step down the ladder in any classification of government quality – comparable, perhaps, to the corruption of the police or the adoption of paper money. Any pattern of political crime renders the State that much less a state, and no crackdown on it can be too harsh.
Given this truism, the existence of political crime must depend on toleration. Political crime is an effect, not a cause. It exists when, and only when, it is tolerated. For example, the toleration of the SA is widely, and I presume correctly, attributed to the “boys will be boys” attitude of German judges in the Weimar era, whose Wilhelmine training tended to give them some sympathy for the nationalist right (of which the NSDAP was only one member).
Of course, there are important political crimes and unimportant ones. We seek only the former. Therefore, with this piquant and memorable illustration, we can head straight for the goal and attempt to produce a definition of an important political crime.
One simple way to classify political crime is to classify it in terms of the political cause it is associated with. Therefore, we could say that political crime in a bad cause is very, very bad – and thus extremely important. Whereas political crime in a good cause is perhaps excusable – at least, certainly more excusable that the same crime with no political motive at all. Therefore, it is more likely to be unimportant, and therefore lauded.
Have you ever found yourself applying this standard, dear reader? If so, you are not alone. We will call it the antinomian interpretation of political crime. Let us observe a few examples.
Thus we can say that James von Brunn is bad, because he stood for neo-Nazism, and neo-Nazis are bad. And Udham Singh – to pick a random revolutionary murderer – stood for the liberation of India, and is therefore –
Perhaps not good. But understandable. Definitely understandable! And if you go to Italy, you may well find yourself in a Piazza Oberdan. Who was this strange man with the strange name? He, too, is understandable. Unlike James von Brunn, of course. And then, of course – and closer to home – there is one with an oddly similar name…
It is easy to see the pitfalls of this system for analyzing political crimes. Often, our judgment of whether a political movement is good or bad will depend on its political crimes. What we have here, however, is a system for analyzing political crimes which depends on the output of our process, the notoriously difficult problem of determining whether a movement is good or bad. We have just invited some serious circular reasoning into this already-challenging problem.
So if the highly-subjective antinomian approach is discarded, what more objective criterion can we find? One candidate is effectiveness. We can say that a political crime is important if, and only if, it is effective. This is the pronomian approach to political crime.
The pronomian defines a a true political crime as one which is a functioning part of a functioning political mechanism. For example, the crimes of the SA are important, because the SA was a functioning mechanism which achieved the goals of the NSDAP, ie, smashing the heads of its political opponents. It cannot be proven that without the SA, the NSDAP would never have come to power, but it is surely at least plausible.
A true political crime is important because its motivation is rational political calculation. While those who joined the SA had not reckoned with the superior military capacity and indomitable destructive drive of America, they otherwise made an excellent choice both individually and collectively. Collectively they achieved their political goals; individually, they received many considerations in the New Germany.
(Note, while we’re on the subject of Hitler, we should take a quick look at the most common fatal error in the historiography of World War II: admitting the Holocaust to any consideration of Allied motives. The Holocaust is excluded in all discussions of Allied war motivations – far from nursing it as propaganda, the Allies bear nontrivial complicity for covering it up. Whatever war FDR was fighting, it was not a war to save the Jews.
Yet this assumption is so easily assumed that it need never be stated, for everyone knows it is false. If you have not already passed through the fires of UR, removing this small counterfeit part from your World War II should have the same effect as removing the international Jewish conspiracy from James von Brunn’s – whatever rubble remains, it can no longer be described as a historical narrative.
If America’s war wasn’t a war to save the Jews, what was it? It wasn’t a war against the Axis plan for world domination, for there was no such plan – that was Allied propaganda. In fact, there was barely any such thing as an “Axis.” And nor was it a war for the liberty of man – considering the concurrent embrace of Stalin. So what was it? Here is my favorite clue, which I cling to like an anti-Semite. Here at UR, we often mutter darkly about the international Protestant conspiracy. We’re not joking, either.)
But in any case, since the crimes of the SA were true political crimes, functional parts of a functioning mechanism, they are important. They exist as the result of a rational motivation, and diagnose a serious ill at the heart of the State (the corruption of its judicial system), and any historian writing in 1932, if he wrote correctly, would judge them thus. Of course, he might also note that it was not the Right which brought political crime into Germany.
For an example closer to home, it is no secret that white supremacy in the South between Reconstruction and the civil-rights movement was maintained by true political crime, unabashed and tolerated. While it must be borne in mind that by no means all lynching victims were innocent, lynching was most definitely a political crime – it was used by one faction to forcibly subordinate another, and it could only exist where it was tolerated by the courts. It is no secret that this was part of a general pattern of lawlessness, which Washington could not permit indefinitely – despite the corrupt bargain that elected Hayes.
A crime which appears related to some political movement, but is not in fact effective, might be defined as a parapolitical crime. That is, it appears to be a political crime; it resembles the crimes of political movements in the past, or has some imaginary connection to some real movement of the present, or some real connection to some imaginary movement – but is not, in fact, a functioning part in a functioning mechanism.
Thus its perpetrators are not rational attackers. And thus their only possible reason for committing their crimes is that they are out of their frickin’ gourds.
I feel it is extremely clear that the crimes of both von Brunn and Epstein is parapolitical in nature. It appears to be political crime. But it is actually just the act of a man who is crazy or drunk, respectively. And it cannot be even remotely described as effective – thanks to the brave efforts of the few, but proud, anti-fascist activists, these crimes may even be counterproductive to the general wingnut cause. Ya think?
Note the interesting parapolitical structure of these offences. The suggestive parallel – the crimes of the SA, for von Brunn; the regime of Jim Crow, for Epstein. You will notice that nothing of the kind exists in the present, though it certainly existed in the past.
If the crimes of von Brunn and Epstein are part of a pattern, they are part of a pattern that no longer exists. As Hume noted, the past exists only in our imagination. It could be the case that Epstein’s victim is terrified of returning to Georgetown lest she be struck and demeaned once again by some Jewish-Korean drunken master, and it could be the case that Americans are afraid to speak out against the Holocaust lest 88-year-old men drive up in Gran Torinos and perforate them with a hunting rifles. But it is not the case – and if it was, it would be evidence of mental derangement, individual or general. Reality exists. Ernst Röhm doesn’t.
Of course, these patterns existed in the past, and could exist in future. But it did not exist when the crimes were committed, and thus the crime cannot be a true political crime. Therefore, we are looking at parapolitical crimes, which are unimportant by definition.
Any attention directed at them is therefore misdirected. Here at UR, we are of course familiar with these Jedi mind tricks. Nonetheless, it is always fun to capture another in the wild.
Why would your attention be misdirected? Well, allow me to redirect your attention. I suspect that what happened in the plea negotiations between Marcus Epstein and the prosecution was that he agreed to a bargain that would be sealed, thus would not destroy his life. This could not possibly happen if the prosecution did not, knowing the actual facts, agree that he was in some sense morally innocent. Epstein signed the paper, trusted the government, and got pwned.
Of course, this is just a guess – we have no way of knowing the actual circumstances under which these documents were released. The pro-government activists who acquired them, obviously individuals with a great personal commitment to law and transparency, used the word “obtained.” The presumed process is that someone in the court released them, and this release was certainly not through the court’s official channels.
If this is true, “crime” seems like the right word. If the documents were due to be released anyway, the crime was a minor crime, comparable to most Washington leaks. If not, as I surmise, it seems morally more serious. Either way, the act is a technicality; it is not a crime in an important different sense, because it can be and never will be prosecuted. An unenforced law is no law at all. (It might actually be morally wrong to prosecute anyone for such an offence.)
Does this remind you of anything, by any chance?
When, earlier, I summarized this argument with a link, I linked to this law-magazine article. The entire article is worth reading – it is not long. But here is a condensation:
A federal judge Tuesday rebuked an attorney, an expert witness and a reporter for The New York Times for violating a protective order in a mass-tort action concerning the health risks of Zyprexa, an anti-psychotic drug manufactured by Eli Lilly.
Eastern District of New York Judge Jack B. Weinstein, said the men — Alaska attorney James Gottstein; Dr. David Egilman, an expert hired by plaintiffs; and Alex Berenson, of the Times — had “conspired to obtain and publish documents in knowing violation of a court order not to do so, and that they executed the conspiracy using other people as their agents in crime.”
The documents were covered by a protective order, and Weinstein said all three men knew about the order.
The judge alleged, based on testimony from Gottstein, that Berenson and Egilman had devised a way to circumvent the order: Have Gottstein subpoena Egilman for a case in Alaska, and then send the documents to Berenson for an exclusive story.
In a statement, the Times said that because it [ie, the Times – MM] had declined to allow Berenson to testify, the judge came to a conclusion that “vastly overstates Alex’s role in the release of the documents.”
The statement added: “We continue to believe that the articles we published were newsworthy and accurate and we stand by the reporting.”
Stephen Gillers, a professor of legal ethics at New York University School of Law, said that while lawyers are constrained by ethics rules of their profession, journalists need only obey the law in reporting a story.
“But the bottom line is, there is no First Amendment right to violate a judge’s order,” he said.
Although Berenson might not face sanctions, Gillers said he might yet be called to testify about the case.
“It could come to pass that his testimony is sought in conjunction with any penalty against the other two,” Gillers said. “He may not be a party to anything but he may be a witness.”
“Even if one believes, as apparently did the conspirators, that their ends justified their means, courts may not ignore such illegal conduct without dangerously attenuating their power to conduct necessary litigation effectively on behalf of all the people,” the judge wrote. “Such unprincipled revelation of sealed documents seriously compromises the ability of litigants to speak and reveal information candidly to each other; these illegalities impede private and peaceful resolution of disputes.”
If this isn’t lawlessness, what is? In fact – if it is not true political crime, what is?
The New York Times, via its reporters acting as proxies, steals documents. It violates laws that everyone else must follow. It uses the information in these documents to sell newspapers, and profits by it. And most important, it uses this process to exercise political power, informal but no less real. Therefore, this crime – not necessarily as an individual event, but as a pattern – is a functioning part in a functioning mechanism. It is therefore a true political crime.
The most we can say is that this is a different kind of true political crime. It does not involve bashing Communists over the head with beer steins. It involves stealing documents. This is true, and must be remembered. (But remember also that what makes political crime important is the presence of systematic criminality in one’s political structure, rather than details of the crimes themselves – though any widespread pattern of crime must reflect misgovernment.)
The fact that the Times may commit this class of crime with impunity, while I can’t and you can’t, enables it (with the true press, of course, as a whole) to act as almost a sovereign force. With the power that the true press wields by virtue of this authorized political crime, it acts as an almost irresistible force in the departments of its “coverage.” In 1974 it defeated a President, and only one bastion now remains. The Supreme Court, still, is sovereign – but its Justices read the paper like everyone else, and they do not get to assign their own journalists.
Granted, the actual theft of actual documents, through criminal conspiracy as described, is not a common event. However, please feel free to go through today’s Times, and look at which articles are the result of public information and which are not. You will certainly find some “stories” which contain only information which any energetic person (with a press pass) could find and reproduce.
But most of your important news stories will be anonymously sourced, meaning they are the result of information disclosures which are not public. Some of these sources are legally authorized to disclose the information they disclose. Some are not. And no one is ever prosecuted for any of this, except by some chance if they happen to be a Republican.
This is considered a normal and ethical practice in early 21st-century journalism. It is actually a criminal practice, which any other century would recognize as such. Proper practice in official information disclosure is actually followed, at present, more or less, by one class of agency: publicly traded corporations, which must follow Regulation Fair Disclosure.
If Reg FD were applied to USG and actually enforced, the true press as we know it would cease to exist. A corporation that follows Reg FD may not leak, voluntarily or not. And, in general, they don’t. (The result in my own field is a beautifully adversarial relationship with the world’s healthiest duopoly of journalism – El Reg and L’Inq.)
Effectively, the business of the Times as an institution of journalism can be described as the business of stealing secrets from the public trust, and selling them. Note also that this cozy social network of power is what makes the Times irresponsible as an intellectual sovereign – its access to the secrets of power makes it impossible to displace through mere competing honesty. No competitor, however truthful, can offer anything like a matching buffet of material non-public information.
So, setting bait to catch a salmon, we have hooked a killer whale. The logical net we wove to catch von Brunn and Epstein has passed up von Brunn and Epstein, but “Punch” Sulzberger appears to be writhing in it. Oops! What do we do? Sue the Times?
No – cut the line. Obviously, this is an absurd result, and there must be something wrong with it. The New York Times cannot possibly be a criminal organization. There must be something wrong with the logic above. I invite all UR readers – reactionary or progressive – to discover it.
But this is not the only lesson that the cases of von Brunn and Epstein teach us. Hardly! We have only scratched the skin of Lord Foul. Since we are through the armor, let us dig briefly in the black, sulfurous flesh, and see if we can’t nibble off a vile meatball or too.
There is a fascinating duality in the relationship between Right and Left, as we see it exposed in the entire incident – the crimes and the strange reaction to them.
In this broad pattern, leftists actually believe that the Right is fundamentally unscrupulous and criminal, in exactly the same way in which the Left is fundamentally unscrupulous and criminal.
Meanwhile, many, if not most, if not (in some ways) almost all, rightists are corrupted by the pervasive temptations of the Left – plus a few unique temptations of their own, like knee-high leather boots. They allow their compass to drift from true Right; they adopt not only the ideas and buzzwords of the Left, but also its antinomian mindset, and its tactics. And they thus descend to political crime – thus confirming the suspicions of said leftists.
This pattern, once noticed, is easily seen across the 20th century. Unlike most mental parasites, it has a morph for both right and left. It is therefore stable. And it is a difficult feat of Jedi mind-trick resistance for either a rightist or a leftist to escape from it.
For the first half of the pattern, I have personally observed that most progressives, even well-informed progressives, have no idea whatsoever what right-wingers think and why. They can barely tell a neocon from a paleocon. The difference (not a terribly subtle one) between the ideology of James von Brunn, and that of Marcus Epstein, might as well be 13th-century French poetry as far as they’re concerned. Indeed, they may know more about 13th-century French poetry.
Therefore, it is quite plausible for them to think that the right side of their political dial works in exactly the same way as the left side, only reversed. And they know the left side that well. Thus, if on the social graph of revolutionary politics, Barack Obama and Louis Farrakhan are linked by one degree of separation, the same is probably true for Dick Cheney and James von Brunn.
As Voltaire said, those who can believe absurdities will commit atrocities. And they most certainly do. You’ll note that once we get to Louis Farrakhan and friends, we are not just talking about stealing documents.
Suffice it to say that the general flow of the progressive social graph is “no enemies to the left, no friends to the right,” and the general flow of the conservative social graph is – exactly the same. Who operates under the rule “no enemies to the right, no friends to the left?” Answer: basically, no one. If you doubt me on this, this one is worth investigating.
Here again we see our old friend, tu quoque. Because progressives adopt the antinomian definition, which allows them to minimize all kinds of crimes committed by their political allies, a mountain of revolutionary or democratic lawlessness is a molehill in their eyes. A molehill of conservative or reactionary lawlessness becomes a mountain. Thus, in classic Don Quixote fashion, they crusade against right-wing thuggery, ie fascism, which is nothing but a fading, distorted and now largely-imaginary reflection of their own revolutionary violence.
You might have noticed that James von Brunn didn’t commit his crime at the Commucaust Museum. This is not next door to the Holocaust Museum. Nor is it ten times the size. It does not even exist, and nor is there even any such catchy term. And what if it did? Would Kendall Myers show up at its door, and shoot some poor redneck guard?
Without the Bolsheviki, it is hard to imagine the Nazis. Without the French Revolution, it is almost impossible to imagine either. Without the American Revolution, it is impossible to imagine the French Revolution. Without the English Civil War and “Glorious Revolution,” it is impossible to imagine the American Revolution. Thus the Jacobite or Legitimist alone may regard the last four centuries with simple, unmitigated regret and revulsion. And yet, I regularly see young people strolling around with hammer-and-sickle T-shirts.
In fact, it is really quite ballsy for a society which has adopted the principle of disparate impact as a fundamental axiom of its jurisprudence to even mention the Holocaust, much less make it the central idol of its civilization. What do you think the chief “Aryan” complaint about Jews was? The shape of their noses? No – that all the high-status professions were full of Jews. In wild disproportion to the numbers in the population.
This was a perfectly true statement. Unfortunately, its simplest explanation was not an international Jewish conspiracy, but mere Ashkenazi intelligence. Similarly, if you understand the crimes of Epstein and von Brunn as further diabolical acts in the service of the international white conspiracy, you may well be a progressive. Forty years after the death of Jim Crow, the concept of “racism” is rapidly becoming a classic conspiracy theory. It even has a name.
Rassenkunde redux! Hitler returns to haunt us, with a vengeance. Meanwhile, in the now-familiar ironic structure, we see that the Holocaust itself is a true conspiracy theory – that is, a gigantic crime carried out as a secret government program, which actually occurred.
And once again, we converge on this strange Dog Star of our society: Hitler. Even the common name of our era is a Hitler name. It is called the postwar era. It could just as easily be the post-Hitler era, for this is exactly what it is.
And Hitler is clearly relevant to this post. So let us gaze into his terrible, mesmerizing eyes (by all reports he had the same gift as Rasputin) once again. We have explained, as unpejoratively as possible, how to escape from the deadly left-right pattern on the left. Let’s see it on the right.
The difference between Right and Left is that, since Left is antinomian and Right pronomian, political crime generally works for the Left. This is why the Left finds it so easy to believe that crimes like that of Epstein and von Brunn are truly political, not merely parapolitical.
For exactly this reason, political crime only rarely works for the Right. Therefore, as a practical and objective matter, leftists are advised to be as devious and ruthless as they can get away with. Whereas rightists should make a habit of rigorous obedience to the law – not only because it is more righteous, but also because it is more effective.
Political murder, creepy stonewalling, mass demonstrations, personality cults, popular elections, crusading journalism, mob intimidation, mendacious pseudohistory, revolutionary cells, direct mail and academic mafiosi: for left against right, all are threads in the great pageant of revolution. For right against left, all but the last are sewage in the great cabernet of reaction.
(And even the last has a bit of that funky barnyard flavor. If you are a young man of reactionary spirit and great intelligence, and you must harness your chaotic, Nietzchean instincts, consider becoming a tenured professor of anything. First step: read Milosz on ketman. But few indeed are called to this termite’s career.)
Leftist ideas can be right, and leftist tactics can be effective. But these cases are the exceptions. Conservatives adopt these ideas and tactics, and lose, because they are conservatives and not reactionaries. If they were reactionaries, they would seek to abolish leftism. Since they are conservatives, they seek to reform it. Thus they are easily drawn to the shibboleths and methods of yesterday’s progressives – for example, protesting Barack Obama’s political crimes in the name and style of the Boston Tea Party, another classic outbreak of political violence.
The arms and garments of the left will always tempt the right. They tempt the left, too. They work. However, it is easy to see why they are fundamentally leftist. They are fundamentally works of the Devil. The Devil, as Dr. Johnson put it, was the first Whig. There are those who think they can beat the Devil by joining him, but alas – they are mistaken.
It was Carlyle who realized that left and right are not parallel but opposite. The struggle of right against left is the struggle of order against disorder, cosmos against chaos, God against the Devil. You may not believe in God and the Devil as physical entities, and neither do I. An inability to understand them as metaphors is not evidence of a free mind, but a captive one.
Order need not stand defenseless before disorder. Fire can be fought with fire. But when the angels fight, they fight because one must fight to win. When the demons fight, they fight because they are demons from hell, who were born in fire and will love it forever.
Angels who fall prey to this spirit become demons. Not only are the worst fights those of demon and demon – but when the game is a game of fire, the lightly-corrupted angel has no chance at all against Beelzebub and his old prison crew.
This applies not just to James von Brunn and his .22 rifle, or even to Marcus Epstein and his drunken “karate chop.” It applies to Marcus Epstein and his political activism, all of which is democratic and conservative in spirit, and none of which strikes me as any more productive – even assuming the exact goals of Marcus Epstein – than hitting random people in the street.
The wounds of USG are great and awful, and if they could be fixed with a drunken karate chop or two, we would have to seriously consider the possibility. Fortunately or unfortunately, this is not the case.
But just as they will not be fixed with a drunken karate chop, they will not be fixed by Pat Buchanan’s “peasants with pitchforks” or Sam Francis’s middle-American radicals. And this is precisely the audience to which Mr. Epstein has spent his short career peddling ideas. Supposing Marcus Epstein had all these people, what exactly would he do with them?
There are no longer enough to win a universal-suffrage election. And this “Vaisya” population – the same that backed Hitler – is the exact converse of a Pareto elite. Every bone in USG’s body is designed to exclude them, whether they win the election or lose it, from power. So I see only one realistic answer: the Devil’s work. Mr. Epstein, the Devil will always out-devil you.