The Post-Right Explainer
A New Approach to Traditionalist Politics
“Here's to the next insurrection of the negroes in the West Indies.” - Samuel Johnson
The “Post-Left” refers broadly to two different political tendencies. The original “Post-Left” refers to a strain of anarchism which rejects most of the fundamental attributes of “the Left,” that is to say class struggle, the organization of trade unions and political parties, and the construction of coherent ideological doctrines, represented by thinkers such as Bob Black and Hakim Bey who emphasize immediatist approaches to the abolition of work and establishment of self-governing “autonomous zones.” The new “Post-Left,” on the other hand, is an ambiguous collection of internet personalities who have the nebulous goal of “socialism” and claim to be materialists and Marxists, but reject any form of “identity politics” to the point of frequently taking socially conservative stances on most issues and tend to embrace nationalism at the expense of internationalist solidarity with the workers of the world.
The only real connection between these disparate “Post-Lefts” is that they both share the same ends as conventional forms of leftism, the end of capitalism, but reject most of the fundamental premises and foundations of left-wing thought. This particular essay is not intended as a done-to-death critique of either “Post-Left,” but to use these iconoclastic approaches to politics as examples and a jumping off point for their inversion.
Let us consider the fundamental conceit and goals of right-wing politics: in broad terms, the rightist asserts that the past was superior in most regards to the present, and that society should embrace traditional values and structures in order to purge itself of the evils created by modernity. There is a wide diversity of opinions among Rightists as to what this traditional society should be, ranging from the social values that should be enforced, to the composition of the people who should be included in this society, to the economic system of production, but the universal thread throughout is a desire for aristocracy: rulership by the best and most worthy in society, whether they consider this to be hereditary monarchs, pioneering capitalists, or the greatest warriors.
From this, we arrive at our conception of a “Post-Right,” a new approach to politics. Just as the “Post-Lefts” embraces the goals of the Left while rejecting the tenets, ideology, and methods, the “Post-Right” embraces the goals of the Right, specifically a return to a traditional model of society and aristocratic leadership, while rejecting Rightist ideology in all its forms: capitalism, chauvinism, anti-communism, reactionary nationalism, etc.
The majority of rightists, proclaiming themselves to be the preservers of tradition in fact serve as some of its fiercest enemies. Most are committed to defending capitalism, the great beast which dissolves all social bonds and sense of community, consciously or unconsciously. Even among those who do recognize the threat which capitalism poses to ancient traditions, they inevitably find themselves falling for other traps of modernity: upholding a Westphalian conception of the nation-state and its borders, the Enlightenment era invention of biological race, or some rigid conception of social stratification that inevitably produces kakistocratic rule. In doing so, the Right abandons the traditions of our most ancient and venerated ancestors, the nomadic peoples who freely wandered across steppes and plains where they pleased, and who saw each other as an extended family beyond blood ties who shared their resources in common and held generous gift-giving as the height of virtue. The great civilizations of the past, even as they degenerated from this noble state, still retained elements of these ancient virtues, in the forms of organized command economies, the sacred duties of rulers as gift-givers to their subjects, and an imperial cosmopolitanism which sought wisdom and higher understanding of the divine wherever it could be found. These are the traditions and virtues which modernity and capitalism has taken from us, and which the Right has no hope of retrieving for us.
“We will sing of the great crowds agitated by work, pleasure and revolt; the multi-colored and polyphonic surf of revolutions in modern capitals” - Filippo Tommaso Marinetti
The greatest failures of all Rightist movements are their perpetual attempts to restore the past, usually a past that did not even exist in the first place, and inevitably being either crushed under the boot of Modernity, or embracing and heightening it. The Fascists in Italy and Germany never rejected modernity, but simply heightened its worst aspects, turning every aspect of society into a factory at the mercy of those same capitalists who had been destroying the bonds of everything supposedly held sacred by these supposed champions of ancient tradition. Every rightist, reactionary, and third positionist movement degenerates into thugs and goons for the international capitalists who they nominally despise.
The Rightist must give up hope for returning to the past. There will not be any Fourth Reich outside of this dying Neoliberal Atlanticist Empire. There can be no Herrenvolk Fordism, or Distributist Integralism: we cannot resurrect old systems any more than we can resurrect the dead. Nor even would it be desirable to bring back the systems which would once again mutate into what we have today again anyway. The neocameral “feudalism” which some reactionaries aspire to is merely a mutation of existing capitalism which sheds the vestige of the nation-state, but achieves little else besides offering up more power to the degenerate oligarchs who represent all we despise: stagnation, consumerism, and the death of art.
In history, the Futurists stand out as the only major rightist movement who truly looked towards the (titular) future rather than longing for a past that could not be replicated or reinforcing the status quo of the present through heightened violence. Truly their greatest mistake was to attach themselves to Mussolini’s fascists, who in the end were nothing more than exalters of the institutions of the present. Another victory for oligarchy, another loss for aristocracy and the masses. In 20th century Europe, there was only one movement which both replicated the grand triumphs of the ancient past and embraced the possibilities of the future, and it most certainly wasn’t the Fascist movement.
In 1957, Marxist-turned-anticommunist sinologist Karl August Wittfogel put forward the argument that the Marxist-Leninist states of the Soviet Union and the People’s Republic of China followed the same model of “Oriental Despotism” as ancient societies such as Pharaonic Egypt, Ancient Babylon, Hellenic Greece, Imperial Rome, and the Incan Empire. To the liberal Rightist, this is a condemnation of the Asiatic “tyranny” of Stalinism and Maoism in contrast with the wonders of Amerikan capitalist “democracy,” which shares nothing in common with those venerable civilizations. To the Post-Rightist however, this is the highest praise one can offer! The Marxist-Leninist state, as can be seen in Cuba, the DPRK, and even China and Vietnam to an extent, has proven itself to be a resilient model that can survive and retain the virtues of Ancient and Classical civilization even in the age of totalizing capitalism. If Vladimir Lenin and Julius Caesar were truly cut from the same cloth, then it is noble Bolshevism that we must look to, not degenerate Fascism, that we might establish a new society bound by blood and tradition. Marxism, the forbidden fruit for the Right which has been made irreparably delirious by decades upon decades of anti-communism, is the best possible foundation for any political movement which seeks to reclaim the primordial glory of ancient humanity. Indeed, Communism is the Traditionalism of the 21st Century!
“I will not cease from mental fight / Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand / Till we have built Jerusalem / In England's green & pleasant land.” - William Blake
Looking across societies, from Pharaonic Egypt to Communist China, a pattern emerges from close study. The ultimate connective tissue of any people is not fundamentally race, nation, or even religion, but rather mythology, which transcends and encompasses all three: the story of why a people is bound together and inspired to build something grand and beautiful. This is why any great revolutionary engages in Mythopoeia and creates a grand narrative which draws on primordial archetypes and motifs in order to unite the masses: the very act of revolution itself is a sort of Titanomachy, comparable to the battle of Enlil and Enki against Tiamat. It is in the revolution that Heroics, that lost relic of the past, still emerges and shines through. When we consider Simon Bolivar, Giuseppe Garibaldi, and Che Guevara, we must recognize them for the modern Galahads they are, knights who quested after that ancient ever-sought Grail.
This conception of revolution, and social order as a whole, as fundamentally mythological is drawn from the ideas of Georges Sorel, the French syndicalist, widely beloved by fascists and rightists, who conceived that the power of myth would serve as a key component in proletarian revolution, and further that it would be in this revolution that civilization would be rejuvenated and reborn from its decrepit and degenerate state. This Sorelian conception of socialist revolution as the means by which society might reclaim its ancient glory is the central idea of the Post-Right: from a combination of primal legends and Marxian futurism, we shall create a New Mythology that will bring humanity out of the darkness of capitalist modernity.
The Post-Right can be considered an Archeofuturist project, synthesizing the capabilities of the present and possibilities of the future with the virtues and systems of the past: we cannot abandon the ancient traditions which resonate with our souls and envigor us with their mere invocation, but nor can we simply replicate them as if we have not seen such vast changes in our productive forces. Venerable institutions which have survived to the modern era must be emphasized. Popular assemblies, such as the Athenian Ecclesia, Curiate Assembly, and the Germanic Thing in the past, are reflected now in forms such as the communal councils of Venezuela. The grand masonic projects of the Ziggurats and Pyramids, which brought together the masses to expend the excess energies which could not be put towards growth or reproduction, exist today in the forms of similar Cyclopean projects. The past still resonates in the present, and we must seize upon those things which are truly eternal: the gathering of the masses in political assembly and projects of Promethean creation as the basis for a society that recaptures the virtues of the premodern world. The waves of the distant past will converge and crash upon the shores when revolution comes, creating a completely new social order shaped by the ancient world.
The concept of the Post-Right was envisioned over a century before this essay by that strange and wondrous occult thinker, Aleister Crowley. His vision was that of “aristocratic communism,” an order which would destroy the old bourgeois elite with their pretentious false morality and subservience to the unthinking iron will of profit and capital. From the old capitalist order emerges a new communalism, where all things are held in common from which a new aesthetic elite might emerge: a Wildean society run by artists no longer bound by the constraints of liberal political economy and culture industry. In this new future which reflects the old, when capital and all its spawn and shadows have been destroyed, then we will be able to have a true aristocracy: leadership which emerges organically, refined in a society which loves culture, art, and myth above all else. This is our vision of the future; this is our return to tradition.
“We have to fight for Freedom against oppressors, religious, social, or industrial; and we are utterly opposed to compromise. Every fight is to be a fight to the finish; each one of us for himself, to do his own will; and all of us for all, to establish the Law of Liberty.” - Aleister Crowley