After more than half a century of retreat, marginalisation and constant concessions to an ever-more aggressive and demanding Left, the true Right is returning with a vengeance.
The Left’s cultural dominion, which lasted from 1945 until 1989, is over. The consensus that existed between Communists, Christian Democrats, and the Socialists after the Second World War is gone. The taboos have been shattered – forever. – Gáspár Miklós Tamás
This is happening not a day too soon; Europe faces a long list of problems, not to mention threats. There is no question of the Left or the liberal Right possessing the will or the ability to solve these problems – indeed, they are the two main problems. The return of the ideas of the traditional Right is, indeed, something that concerns us all.
The Left’s cultural war of conquest
As late as the 1950s, traditional ideals were considered the norm in most of Europe. The nuclear family was regarded as the basic foundation of society and the relatively homogeneous ethnic composition of the European nations was not seen as a problem to be solved by mass immigration. Today, more than 60 years later, the ideals of the West have been completely inverted, and ideas that originally belonged to the periphery of the extreme Left have been elevated to social norms that today dominate the education sector, the media, our government institutions, and private NGOs.
In his excellent book, New Culture, New Right (Arktos, 2013), Michael O’Meara presents the path of development that brought us to this point. One of the factors he addresses is the Frankfurt School and its concept of Critical Theory. Marxist sociologists and philosophers at the Frankfurt Institut fur Sozialforschung in the early twentieth century aimed, through their conception of philosophy and selective social analysis, to undermine confidence in traditional values and hierarchies. Its ambitions were to play, through a process that is too complex to account for in this short piece, an increasingly significant role in the post-war period.
Many of the Frankfurt School’s ideas are prevalent in both the Left’s and the media’s description of reality today. In a society characterised by uncontrolled immigration and related social problems, they try to convince their populations that the crucial factor is Western racism. The concepts of a ‘right to birth control’ and radical feminism seem tailor-made to maximise the selfishness of both genders, as well as to reduce the number of births to well below replacement level; ‘patriarchy’ and ‘traditional gender roles’ are regarded as if they were harmful concepts in public debate.
Mass immigration, sexual liberalism, and many other negative political and cultural choices cannot be fully explained by the activities of Leftist politicians alone. Without the Frankfurt School and similar projects it is unlikely, if not inconceivable, that they would have taken the shapes they did. In order to understand how one of history’s greatest civilisations – in what could be seen as a brief moment in terms of historical time – has undergone a drastic transformation from a life-affirming to a genuinely self-destructive social form, one needs an understanding of the role of metapolitics in the social upheavals of the latter part of the twentieth century.
The concept of metapolitics was developed by the Italian Communist Antonio Gramsci in his quest to analyse the reasons behind the fact that the Communist revolution never succeeded in Western Europe. According to Gramsci, this was because the bourgeois cultural hegemony had to be broken first in order to make society receptive to the idea of a Communist takeover. Guided by this analysis, the Left later began what they termed their long march through the institutions, and finally secured Leftist cultural hegemony in Europe – a hegemony that was achieved through a long-term, persistent, and uncompromising meta-policy. Neither political violence nor parliamentary politics played a major role in this process, even if it came to influence both. The result was indeed different than Gramsci would have imagined, as has been discussed by Paul Gottfried in The Strange Death of Marxism (University of Missouri, 2005) and further explicated in Chapter 2 of New Culture, New Right.
Metapolitics can be defined as the process of disseminating and anchoring a particular set of cultural ideas, attitudes, and values in a society, which eventually leads to deeper political change. This work need not – and perhaps should not – be linked to a particular party or programme. The point is ultimately to redefine the conditions under which politics is conceived, which the European cultural Left pushed to its extreme. The metapolitical chokehold that political correctness has over Western Europe is a result of consistent cultivation – or rather misuse – of this strategy. Only by understanding this tool, countering its misuse, and turning it to serve our own ends, can we overcome the miserable situation that our continent is in.
The fall of the old Right
The Left’s advance during the second half of the twentieth century was made possible by three main factors:
1) After the Second World War, the Right was associated with the losing side, most especially Nazism. The fact that concentration camps and systematic political persecution were prevalent to the same degree, if not more so, in the victorious Soviet Union, as it had been in the earlier French Revolution which first gave rise to liberalism, was much more effectively dealt with by the revolutionary Left than the reactionary Right, as the Left’s apologists managed to effectively sweep all of these crimes under the carpet.
2) The Left’s aforementioned long march through the institutions escalated during the ‘60s and ‘70s, and culminated in their usurpation of the media, cultural institutions, and educational systems – in other words those pillars of society which shape people’s thoughts and opinions.
3) The Left which developed in Western Europe and North America under the guidance of figures such as Herbert Marcuse took on an eccentric shape. In this new form of the Left, the European working class was dismissed as incurably reactionary, and was replaced in its previous role as the revolutionary subject by sexual and ethnic minorities. This coincided with the rise of powerful, new economic and political interests and tendencies in the West. The beliefs of Marcusian Leftism, where class struggle and economic redistribution was drowned out by a cult of the individual and strange forms of (minority) identity politics, were consistent with the concept of the ideal consumer developed by the oligarchs of the new global marketplace of liberalism. Likewise, the American government’s determination to prevent its own domestic Leftist opposition from establishing anything friendly with the Soviet Union or otherwise politically effective made Marcusian Leftism an ideal fallback strategy.
The Left’s successful metapolitics, in which decades of persistent struggle gradually managed to give it a control of the vital culture-forming institutions, can certainly serve as an instructive example of what we now need to implement in pursuit of our own goals. At the same time, it is also a warning signal. To the extent that the Leftist project set out to create economic equality and end the alienation of the individual in modern society – i.e. what Marx advocated – it has obviously failed miserably. Despite its firm grip on the public debate in Sweden (for example), in practice the Left achieves little more than to fill the role of global capitalism’s court jester. Despite this, it continues to succeed in its other main goal, which has been to prevent Europe’s native populations from defending themselves against a political project that undermines their right to political self-determination. Toward this end, sentimentality was substituted for Marxist historical analysis. Even its relatively limited forms of economic redistribution policies have been gradually relegated to the rubbish heap of history, except for the redistribution of financial resources from the European middle classes to both big business and the growing foreign lumpenproletariat which has been dumped on European soil. If today we refer to the spectre of Communism haunting Europe, as Marx claimed in his manifesto, what we truly mean is a highly relevant ghost.
What this indicates is that the Left’s advances have largely taken place with both the approval and impetus of the elites of the Western world, which is not something a genuine Rightist movement can count on. The Right, however, unlike the Left, have the advantage that they are simply more correct on many issues. Our description of reality is more in line with what people actually experience in everyday life (which is of crucial importance in politics), and our predictions and explanatory methods are more consistent with what is actually happening in our communities. This is still no guarantee of success, but it is an advantage.
When we speak of the Right, it is important to be clear that we do not speak of the Left-liberal parody that currently goes by that name as in, for example, the Swedish public debate. The Swedish ‘Right-wing’, with its slip towards the Left and its inherent weakness and timidity, is unworthy of the name. The rise of this type of ‘Right’ in the post-war period is a direct consequence of its failure to grasp the importance of metapolitics and cultural efforts. As a result it has simply capitulated to the Left on these issues. Secure in the knowledge that the New Left does not threaten the ownership of property or financial power relations, the only issues European Liberals and “Conservatives” alike seem to care about, the ‘Right wingers’ of Europe seem to be satisfied. Otherwise they have come to stand behind ideas such as equality, feminism, mass immigration, post-colonialism, anti-racism, and LGBT interests.
A ‘Right’ that has become part of the Left has no value, and it is time that these pathetic advocates of fatal half-measures make way for a genuine Right.
The New Right is born
From the ruins of the old Right, an impressive array of intellectuals has emerged on the continent. The circle centred upon the French think-tank Groupement de Recherche et d’Études pour la Civilisation Européenne (GRECE) have had to strike a difficult balance. For those who have grown up in post-war Europe, it is easy to see politics as nothing more than a choice between Leftist utopianism, market-based liberalism, or ‘neo-Nazism’ and ‘fascism’. This trichotomy is obviously false, but the established institutions of the Western world, being led by the Left, have long had an interest in maintaining it.
All those who wish Europe well, be it individuals, think-tanks, or parties, must operate within the parameters of this silly paradigm and find ways to strike a balance between the constant attacks from the paid preachers of hate on the one side, and their duty to their own ideas, based as they are in the history and traditions of Europe. GRECE is perhaps the one milieu that has grappled the most with this problem continuously over the past 50 years, with varying degrees of success.
Clearly, this is the problem that must be dealt with by those social movements which are trying to put an end to, or at least alleviate, Europe’s distress. All ‘Right-wing populist’ parties are forced to respond to a political and ideological hegemony that is most often openly hostile to Europe’s native populations, and thus even more hostile to whoever casts himself as a spokesman for their interests. In some cases, the adaptations such people make are minimal – as in, for example, completely distancing themselves from thugs, terrorists, and idiots, which is a prerequisite for any possibility of winning, and for their victory to be at all desirable. The friction that is growing between the various ethnic groups in Europe is a direct consequence of radical multiculturalism (both immigration itself as well as the pathological nature of political ideologies which bear the same name), but that does not mean that the spontaneous hostility of the majority against various other groups is something which can or should be directly translated into a meaningful political project. Pressure from the ‘establishment’ may thus actually be a positive thing, since it forces the Right to discipline itself and create a more positive ideology and political image.
But in the meantime, those who are attempting to walk while keeping one foot on the path of political correctness and the other outside of it can also waddle off in the wrong direction, and radically so. Parties whose function it is to preserve, or rather restore, traditional European values should not be concerned with ingratiating themselves with the sworn enemies of these very same values. Refraining from vulgar expressions of ‘racism’ may be an expression of political and personal maturity, but to be ‘anti-racist’ is something quite different – it is to be part of a movement which is directly linked to a reckless hatred for Europe and her history.
Manic hatred of Jews, homosexuals, Muslims, or other minorities is clearly irrational, and it cannot lead to a positive political project. Nevertheless, what Europe needs today is a Right which looks toward her own interests, not toward those who would turn her into a tool of groups which are, at best, indifferent to her future.
The Swedish New Right takes the lead
At the beginning of the new millennium, the establishment’s hegemony is coming apart, as the Left’s ideological and wholly unrealistic interpretation of the world is more clearly betraying its weaknesses. As a result, it is being increasingly challenged by a rapidly growing number of European men and women.
This development is ongoing across Europe, even in notoriously ultra-liberal Sweden. Although Swedes have lagged behind in this regard as a result of the Left’s disproportionately strong grip on our opinion-forming institutions, we are beginning to catch up. New political players have appeared and given renewed courage to those disheartened social critics who, after years of ruthless persecution, are now able to voice their opinions in the fresh air of a new political dawn. Overall, this has created optimal conditions for a broader impact of our ideas – something that is mainly visible in Sweden with the rise of the Sweden Democrats, accompanied by a rapid growth of favourable public opinion towards them.
Although the general public only sees, for the most part, the superficial aspects of this emerging paradigm shift in terms of parliamentary successes, this trend actually began much earlier. Behind the scenes of everyday politics – where we were placed against our will, since those who control the channels of mass communication were effectively blocking our writers and thinkers from participating in the public debate – activities to prepare the groundwork have now been going on for over a decade, representing vigorous efforts to promote the development and dissemination of Europe’s authentic values and cultures.
If were to give a definitive starting date to these activities, one could say that the Swedish New Right was born precisely ten years ago. In 2005, a small group of right-leaning university students in Gothenburg began to form, consisting of those of us who became enthusiastically inspired by reading a number of ground-breaking works, including the original English-language edition of Michael O’Meara’s New Culture, New Right, as well as essays by Alain de Benoist, Guillaume Faye, Dominique Venner, Pierre Krebs, and other thinkers from the continental New Right. These texts opened our eyes to this new intellectual arsenal of the Right and its explosive ideas, not least of which was the unique concept of a ‘metapolitics of the Right’. Duly inspired, we launched the think-tank Motpol on 10 July 2006, which will celebrate its tenth anniversary shortly after the appearance of this translated volume.
For ten years, Motpol has conducted public outreach efforts and carried on its work, which was directed at those who wished to create something to replace the old, impotent Right, and we have gradually begun to make this a reality. Motpol was initially met with scepticism and hostility, not only from the Left and the liberal Right, but also from some nationalists and some of those of the ‘radical Right’.
Over the years, however, we came to win greater respect from both nationalists and even the hostile Leftists, and our operations have evolved from a small think-tank with an associated blog portal into a larger network organising lectures and seminars all over Sweden. The most famous of these events is perhaps the annual conference series Identitarian Ideas, which has presented lectures from many of the most formidable conservative and Right-wing thinkers across the world. Eventually, Motpol also became a fully-fledged online cultural magazine which attracts guest columnists from across a wide spectrum of backgrounds and viewpoints.
Motpol has served not only as a think-tank and advocacy magazine, but also as a training ground for the cultivation of the new voices of the Swedish alternative Right. Many talented writers and commentators have begun their careers with us. Some remained, others have moved on to other projects. Most have left a significant mark upon the political development in Sweden – not least in the intellectual debate – and they will certainly continue to do so for many years to come.
Parallel to Motpol’s emergence and growing influence, we have witnessed the gradual rise of a genuinely professional alternative media network in Sweden, which today, in 2015, has begun to challenge the establishment media. This includes a number of different publications and outlets, from the libertarian conservative flagship Fria Tider, which is unique worldwide for the broad news coverage it offers Swedes while operating entirely outside mainstream news channels, to Avpixlat, which focuses almost entirely on criticism of Sweden’s immigration policies. What we can now see is a broad and powerful media network on the alternative Right that is now seriously challenging the dominance of the liberal-Left media in Sweden.
Motpol also gave rise to several side projects that have had an international impact, the most prominent being the publishing company Arktos, which as of today has published over 100 titles and is the world leader among Traditionalist and Rightist publishing houses. Although Arktos’ staff is international, the circle around Motpol and the Swedish New Right has been absolutely critical to its success.
In light of Sweden’s peripheral location and small population, the influence we have had on the policies and development of the European Right in recent years has been disproportionately high, and has only been exceeded by the efforts of our colleagues in France, Germany, and Hungary. This is in spite of the fact that our successes in the realm of practical politics, at least so far, continue to lag.
The systematic efforts which have been undertaken to reverse the liberal trend in Sweden and Europe as a whole are being conducted by only a small minority in our societies. But as many, including Oswald Spengler, have pointed out, it is always a dedicated minority who change the course of history. Throughout history, less organised groups have often succeeded in influencing the development of a society by applying well-developed strategies. As Mikhail Khodorkovsky, one of the Western-funded challengers to Vladimir Putin ahead of the Russian presidential election of 2016, has put it: ‘A minority is influential if it is organised.’
This optimistic insight has guided the entire project of the Swedish New Right.
The Left’s impending doom
The real Right is now making a comeback all across Europe. In area after area, country after country, we are forcing the Left’s disillusioned, demoralised, and feminised minions to retreat back into the margins of society, where their quixotic ideas and destructive utopias belong. The extreme Left does however not take its defeat with good grace. From their quarter we are witnessing violent riots, parliamentary spectacle, and an incomprehensible fixation on the construction and support of eccentric sexual identities, as well as a renewed ‘anti-fascist’ struggle consisting of harassment, violence, and, in some cases, even murders of political opponents. These are all symptoms of its dwindling influence and growing desperation. For those who have studied the collapse of the Right in the post-war period, it is easy to recognise these patterns, as there is nothing new in their ‘tactics’. However, our political project is of course not primarily aimed at the crazy Left. Our real task will be to comprehend and develop an alternative to liberal modernity in its entirety. This work is made easier, however, by the Left’s pubescent and suicidal antics.
The Italian philosopher Julius Evola spoke of ‘men among the ruins’ to describe the exclusion that traditionalists and those of the true Right were relegated to in post-war Europe. Thus deprived of power, they were forced to bide their time while the world around them degenerated into the worst of modernity’s excesses and decadence. They found themselves in a Europe where previously marginalised Leftist ideas – now supported by international capital – were suddenly turned into societal norms. A Europe where an anachronistic ‘anti-fascism’ and a hyper-individualistic, liberal version of Marxism were established as the new religions. A Europe that gave free reign to a permanent revolution against tradition, hierarchy, and the structures and values that allowed European civilisation to flourish in the first place. A Europe in which utopian nonsense gave rise to ever more bizarre and harmful social experiments. A Europe that, despite these difficult conditions and bleak circumstances, yet retains the power to turn things around, overcome the fears that afflict her, and regain control of her destiny.
We Traditionalists and Rightists, who are the defenders of Europe, have now remained outsiders for over half a century. In Europe’s gloomy dusk, we now step up to the front and centre. We are the forefront of the future of Europe, and we represent the eternal ideas and values that are now returning across a broad front, building something new out of the solid stones we have found amongst the ruins.
We are the men and women of the true Right. We are the defenders of Faustian civilisation. And Europe belongs to us — tomorrow and forever.
(The above text is an excerpt from chapter 1 in my latest book, The Real Right Returns. If you enjoyed this brief article, get the book to read the full text.)