In the months since my red-pilling, I have spent a great deal of time considering what it means to be “alt-left”. Normies may assume, like Trump , that the alt-left is simply the apparent opposite of the alt-right, and use it to describe groups like Antifa or Black Block, while some on the left, such as Swiss intellect Heinzi Freinacht,would adopt the term to describe a metamodern turn in leftist thought. The former definition I feel confident in calling a mistake, as it arises simply from the error of taking “alt” to be synonymous with “far” while the latter I find extremely interesting and intend to explore more thoroughly at a later point (I expect it has plenty of common ground with my own views, even if it places itself more squarely in lineage with the left); but the definition of “alt-left” I, for a number of reason, take as my own comes from those who first coined it– bloggers in the orbit of Robert Stark’s Podcast The Stark Truth, namely, Robert Lindsay, Francis Nally, and Brandon Adamson. To these bloggers, the alt-left represents less something separate from the broader alt-right as a niche within it: “The Left of the Alt-Right”, as Brandon Adamson subtitles his website Altleft.com. Yet even with this baseline definition in place, the term is still nebulous, with Lindsay calling himself a “liberal race realist”, and Adamson and Nally each having their own visions.
My own conclusion is that there is actually nothing left-wing about the “alt-left” : that the alt-left is every bit as opposed to liberal universalism and globalism as the broader alt-right. Rather than thinking of the “alt-left” as a fusionist political ideology, I think it is more useful to think of it as a phenomenon: the process by which aesthetically progressive cultural interests (e.g. indie rock, modernist architecture ) and socially progressive causes (e.g. environmentalism, trans-humanism, universal basic income) once animated by a liberal, multicultural world-view, slip over and gain a new, nationalistic, and perhaps identitarian, consciousness.
This slippage is the inevitable result of urban, middle to upper class “ SWPL’s” becoming racially aware. With the baked-in-the-cake inevitability of white-minority-hood comes also the inevitability of a new white consciousness, and at that, one which will reach whites across the socio-economic spectrum. Whereas for decades– and still to this day– it has been working class whites who bare the brunt of cultural disenfranchisement wrought by liberalism (and economic disenfranchisement wrought by globalism) all of that is changing and more and more whites from across the socio-economic spectrum are realizing that their way of life isn’t so much the enlightened end-point of history to which all peoples strive, but an ethnically particular, “implicitly white”, mode of Urban living afforded by economic and cultural dominance: and one which will certainly not survive the reduction of whites to a minority status. The degree to which globalization harms the non-immigrant working class is well documented, but certain policies, such as H1B Visas have a direct, and very negative impact on college-educated middle-to-upper class whites (See Robert Stark’s interview with Kevin Lynn of “Progressives for Immigration Reform, in which the two reflect on the negative effect of mass immigration on both the working class and the environment, and conclude that there needs to be a new, perhaps alt-center?, paradigm).
The SWPL group I’m referring to here is, of course, the “occupy wall street”, Bernie Bro, group that one finds referenced in many news articles and opinion pieces. The type of troubled millennial with poor economic prospects…. who can’t afford to live on their own, or start a family, due to the housing crisis, insane student loans, etc.. The would-be-middle-class. This group is naturally attracted to dissident politics. There is a kind of Bernie Sander style of liberal socialism that claims many members from this demographic as of now, but I suggest that in the coming years, such socialism, and the kind of alt-center social nationalism I advocate will find more and more common ground. Add to that the sterile environment for aesthetic expression created for liberalism, as described in my previous posts, and what you have is fertile ground for a kind of reactionary centrist counter-culture.
In my post on Neon-Nationalism I referred to a politics of aesthetics as the most practical route for nationalism– more so than the traditionalist religious route– as nationalist aesthetics actually have the ability to meet people where they are (scanning the internet for relief from ennui), rather than where we may think they ought to be (searching the universe for transcendent goodness or whatever). The internet, and its meme-spreading, overton window shattering, capabilities is the mode of technology which will create this counter-culture.
What I advocate in this culture war is the creation of aesthetic spaces of hegemonic defamiliarization: spaces in which certain progressive aesthetics and causes are suddenly cut free from the political hegemony with which they were formally, unthinkingly, clustered, and re-clustered with a novel, alternative, hegemony. This defamiliarization experience can be so intense as to seem alien or mystical, as the average observer may have been completely blind to the possibility of any such an alternative hegemony, having taken the link between certain aesthetics and liberal universalist politics to be “natural” rather than the product of historical systems of cultural domination. Its that moment where you’re listening to a vaporwave track, and are suddenly struck by the reality of the decline of western civilization, and its true melancholy. You thought you were listening to a hip, leftist, cultural product, but wait: this nostalgia is politically ambiguous at best, if not inherently reactionary.
Such aesthetic defamiliarization spaces are arising on their own in this shifting culture. It’s that moment when “left of left of left” hauntological musician John Maus collaborated with post-ironic far-rightist and comedian Sam Hyde on the latter’s sketch show, Million Dollar Extreme, and then did not disavow. That moment you realize Morrissey is supporting a far right British party not in spite of, but because of his iconically progressive views. It’s the Kanye West-Candace Owens moment too, though for a different community. Its the counter-cultural memories we’ve tried to repress like the apocalyptic racism of Charles Manson, or the fact that even our most beloved punk bands used to dabble in fashy lyricism.
But I argue that these spaces can and should also be brought about intentionally, as in the case of the creation of Fashwave, or other alt-right Vaporwave aesthetics.
Bloggers Al Stankard, Francis Nally, and myself created our own aesthetic defamiliarization space at Philadelphia underground music venue “The Sound Hole” on the 5th of May this year, when Nally brought his post-vapor-wave act “Phteven Universe” to the stage. Gangster Bolshevism conceptualizer Darryl Basarab also made an appearance toward the beginning of the evening.
“For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them”– and so there was the spirit of the Alt-Left.
There was little explicit triggering at this event- mostly just esoteric references to Japanese Breakfast and Xiu Xiu — but I do imagine the earnest fellow Stankard and I flipped through a copy of Nally’s “A Manifesto About Stalking Patrick Hyland” with went home confused, wondering if he really had just run into a group of hipster-fascists, or what?… and were these guys everywhere and maybe just coming out of the woodwork now? In the Disney-movie version of Alt-leftism, this guy would make a reappearance in the third act, fully red-pilled. That is the intended effect of aesthetic defamiliarization.
The method here is to trigger, create spaces in which nationalism, and identitarianism are made to seem an aesthetically and existentially appealing alternative to the “soy-boy” norm of the modern urban male. [To give credit where credit is due, this is exactly what Gavin Mcinnes has done on an Alt-Light level with his “Proud Boys”, the Godfather of Hipsterdom himself being no genius of meta-political thought, but an utter, and apparently lifelong, savant when it comes to creating robust sub-culture.] If liberalism is content to forfeit aesthetics and free-expression–not to mention whites and males as entire demographics– in favor of the godless church of egalitarianism– than there is a lot of unbound, alienated, forces in society we stand a good chance of conquering.
We should stand shoulder to shoulder with normie culture and hipster culture and prosthelatyze indiscriminately. I envision the alt-center as a big-tent movement of pragmatic dissent” like the alt-light but more “based”: with any trace of capitalist cuckservatism cut away, and prepared to find common ground with anti-establishment leftists.
In this way nationalism can out-compete the decline and win.