Towards a Future Beyond Liberalism
An interview with Right On author and translator Eugene Montsalvat. “At this moment, to be Western is to be liberal. We are going to have to completely redefine what it means to be Western. It’s a very big leap to make. I think many people, even those critical of Western liberalism, are afraid. There is a great deal of work to be done in defining the essential idea for a new European civilization.”
The follow is an interview with a gifted young mind that was originally run at the Swedish metapolitical site Motpol on 22 April 2016. He is a contributor to Right On, and despite his young age, he is what one might call an ideological cannon, shooting at every angle. Without further ado, I present Eugene Montsalvat.
Please, both for me and our readers, tell us about your background, who you are, and describe your political views.
I was born in the United States, in Connecticut. I come from what is generally called in the United States a “White working class” background. My ethnic background is Irish, French Canadian, and Lithuanian. My father is a plumber, pipefitter, and steamfitter, and a member of the United Association labor union. I suppose my first exposure to a sort of political consciousness comes from him, the general sense of alienation from both the capitalist Right and the cultural Left as represented by the Republican and Democratic parties in America. I was fortunate enough to get a scholarship to a major university in New York City, where I studied computer science, and have since found employment in that field.
My ideological development first began with reading Plato and Nietzsche, two seemingly contradictory thinkers, but they gave me, respectively, the idea of the state and a critique of Enlightenment rationalism. From there I moved towards the German Conservative Revolutionary movement, which is a broad term for a school that encompasses figures such as Spengler, Jünger, Niekisch, and Arthur Moeller van den Bruck, among many others. It was there that I discovered an ideological niche that united the ideas of nationalism with socialism. Also at this time, I discovered the work of Julius Evola, who in many ways fleshed out the idea of the Platonic state for me. From the German Conservative Revolution, I began to acquaint myself with what has been called the French New Right, particularly the magisterial work of Alain de Benoist, and I also began looking at various so-called Left-wing movements in the new light of the national liberation struggle. Through the French New Right, I was exposed to the work of Alexander Dugin, whose Fourth Political Theory exercised a great influence on my intellectual development. It was here that I started looking at how the Conservative Revolution in Germany evolved to influence the French New Right and the Fourth Political Theory. There was a vast gap in the English-language literature from the Conservative Revolution to the Fourth Political Theory. I took it upon myself to fill that gap. There is a great wealth of transitional figures whose work simply didn’t exist in English. Ernst Niekisch was the first one, the founder of the National Bolshevik school, who articulated a radical fusion of nationalism and socialism that was oriented towards the East, towards Russia. Then Giorgio Freda, who has unfortunately been called a “Nazi-Maoist,” but whose work definitely deserves a look for its fusion of the Platonic idea of the state articulated by Evola with a revolutionary anti-capitalist praxis. In addition, the articles of Jean Thiriart have been fascinating. He was a truly pivotal figure who turned European nationalism away from the clutches of NATO and towards Russia, even meeting with Dugin shortly before his death in 1992. My hope is that by giving these figures wider exposure in the English-speaking world, I can help people evolve from certain failed, reactionary positions towards support for a multipolar world of great civilizations built around a core of economic justice, which is necessary to defend themselves against the culturally atomizing forces of the marketplace.
The synthesis you have found in various strong ideologies is very interesting. For many of our readers it may sound contradictory, but we live in a time when everything has failed. The Fourth Political Theory is of particular interest to me personally since it has spread into some sectors of the political mainstream in Russia, and now to the New Right intellectuals in many Western countries. The idea of integrating Dasein into the center of a future civilization is a complex one. Dugin held a speech a couple of years ago at a Swedish conference in Stockholm called Identitarian Ideas. He was applauded by many, but some attendees were less impressed by his ideas. They could not really understand the concept of the Fourth Political Theory. Is there much to work with in the Fourth Political Theory in terms of our struggle, before Western liberal and capitalist civilization as we know it crashes?
There is certainly much work to be done in terms of practical application. I think in Western Europe, and in the United States as well, there is a great difficulty in finding an “essence,” a “being,” that is outside of modern liberalism, for those civilizations. I think in Western Europe, it will be easier, because there is a heritage of anti-liberal thought to draw upon, both from the Left and the Right. However, it requires a vision of what this post-liberal civilization will be. In the chapter of The Fourth Political Theory entitled “Fourth Political Practice,” Dugin writes, “The vehicle of Fourth Political Theory and Practice lives in a supranatural world … either our political struggle is soteriological or eschatological, or it has no meaning.” So necessarily, the fight is for a salvific myth. However, we have yet to articulate what the new mythos of a great European civilization contains. I think there is a great deal of work to be done in defining the essential idea for a new European civilization, and even more work to be done in the United States, in creating a new vision outside of liberalism. It’s a very daunting task, especially after decades of NATO occupation, the emergence of neo-liberalism as a political and economic consensus, and over two centuries of the development of liberal ideology. Moreover, the development of liberal ideology was carried out by many Europeans themselves. It’s going to be difficult to re-train our minds to think beyond liberalism after several centuries of its dominance. At this moment, to be Western is to be liberal. We are going to have to completely redefine what it means to be Western. It’s a very big leap to make. I think many people, even those critical of Western liberalism, are afraid. They cannot envision completely throwing out something they’ve been part of for two hundred years. When someone like Dugin comes forward with a new vision of the world, they cannot comprehend it, or they even react negatively, seeing an attack on Western liberalism as an attack on the Western people. It requires a certain prophetic vision to understand it. It is not against Europe, it is rather calling for the dawning of a new European vision that will liberate it from the one that is currently occupying and exploiting it. Of course, this new European civilization will be only one of many in the multipolar world, and we must necessarily make allies with those in other civilizations who likewise want to preserve their unique essence against the homogenizing effects of a unipolar world. I think some in the nationalist community want to see other civilizations as enemies, when they should be viewing them as allies, even if we do not share their values. We want to preserve the essence of all civilizations, including our own, which has been suppressed for so long. We need to rekindle our essence by forging a new ideal. Creating this new vision, this European mythos, should be the focus of nationalist movements in Europe – to have a complete ideal, a true vision of European salvation from liberalism. This will be the essence, the Dasein of Europe as a free geopolitical actor, a Europe rid of NATO and the manipulators of the global marketplace.
A question comes to mind which is more or less only for my own personal interest (sorry, readers). When we read the works of Evola, it sometimes feel like we are reading the works of several different and great people. He was a great man with many faces. When you mentioned that you discovered the works of Evola, did you find inspiration, or even embrace, the esoteric side? Are your views of the world and beyond seen through a spiritual telescope?
I was baptized Roman Catholic, but I’d say my soul is naturally pagan, or perhaps more broadly, I prefer the masculine and active life to piety and passivity. Evola’s concept of “Solar Masculinity” as a spiritual orientation is quite similar to my own views. I admire the heroic, the martial, the virile, the active. I think this was probably best expressed in Europe – at least as we can actually see it through actual, documented history rather than in vain attempts to reconstruct religions – in the polytheism of Greece and Rome. I particularly hold to the panentheistic conception of reality articulated by the Platonists, that the universe emanates from the divine and is infused with it. Of course, those virtues and ideas can be found in many forms in other places, peoples, and religions. I think that there is a deep primordial religion, a universal order, beyond any single name, from which the deepest truths arise and are embodied, albeit in a flawed way, by the various religions of the world. One thing I admire is the Roman tolerance for other religions, which was derived from their view that the gods of other peoples, such as the Celts or the Germans, were equivalent to the Roman gods. The idea that there is a certain universal truth and that the different traditions simply use different words for it appeals to me. In terms of the extant religions, Hinduism is a great living tradition, one with a vast body of literature and philosophy which reiterates many of the virtues of Hellenic paganism. I consider Advaita Vedanta to be the equivalent of Platonism in the West. The concepts of detachment and asceticism in Hinduism and Buddhism are of great value and help to build discipline. At the same time, they exist alongside a non-puritanical view of the world, where there is a place for eros and passion and where beauty is celebrated, albeit in healthy moderation. I think the best traditions combine an idea of discipline, order, and strength with a deep aesthetic value. They recognize that beauty is divine, and they demand that man become like the gods. To follow the gods means to raise oneself up to the level of a godly being. Moreover, speaking of other religions, I have admiration for certain strains of Islam, the great heritage of its poets and mystics, which was admired by Goethe and Frederick Hohenstaufen. Within Islam, there is much esoteric knowledge derived from pre-Christian Hellenic civilization as well. The writings of the great Persian Suhrawardi are among the greatest works of Platonic philosophy after the age of Hellenic religion. The works of Henry Corbin illustrate some of these influences on Islam. However, while I respect the religions of other civilizations and wish to learn from them, I don’t think I could ever convert. I admire these religions because I see echoes of what made our own civilization great in the past. I think that of necessity, the greatness of a society is predicated on its members being involved in daily self-overcoming, ascending towards a higher, divine form. I would say my spiritual vision is a sort of alchemy, a transmutation of substances, from mere human to divine being, that requires discipline, self-control, and strict mental focus on an image of the higher.
You write for one of the Internet’s best sites, Right On. Right On has grown significantly in the last couple of months due to appearances by its authors in large-scale national and international medias. Is Right On marching towards standing alongside the international mainstream media one day? The subjects often brought up at Right On are heavy and can be difficult for the idiotic youth to embrace and understand. Do you think we need a Right On Lite that features easier subjects for the youth of the West to understand?
I do not think that Right On needs to alter its subject matter to appeal to the youth. I myself am only 25 years old. If anything, I think the youth need to be challenged more with heavier subject matter. I think many youth want something more than a juvenile subcultural affiliation parading as politics, which is what so many youth political organizations are. In the past, we had formalized rites of passage for youth; now they make their own. We cannot merely be a stopping point for kids to act out their rebellious phase, after which they will return to liberal values. Thiriart mentioned the problem of “juvenile cults” where youths affirm their toughness and strength, and then return to normal society. Of course, these groups get mixed up with drugs, violence, and outrageous rebellious behavior, all of which serves to demonize nationalist ideology. I think our duty is not to appeal to youthful sentiments and passions, but to develop an ideology that will stay with a man for a lifetime. If youths want to become men, they must find a set of values and adhere to them for the rest of their lives. I think many youths want this. They do not want to be rebellious or “edgy,” as we say in the United States; they want something solid, something they can live by and to raise their family to believe in. I think there’s a real yearning for this in an academic world that is flooded with total alienation from the family, from the heritage and traditions of Europe, and from religion. I think many youths are opposed to the political status quo not because they want to be rebels, but because they want something authentic to serve. They see that capitalism is destroying their future livelihoods, they see feminism destroying the family, they see their own people being replaced by foreigners. If this continues, anything worth living for will be gone. These are serious issues. The youths of today see they have no future under the current system, and they are looking for serious solutions. In the field of political action, it only takes a few men with vision and determination to ignite the passions of a generation. We do not need to worry about trying to appeal to the mass of the youths. We need to develop leaders, leaders with serious ideas. Getting a few smart, capable young men to read our work and act upon it will get us much farther than trying to water down our thought to reach the young masses as if philosophy were pop music.
Correct me if I’m mistaken, but you wrote for a site called Counter-Currents. My understanding is that they saw your ideas and writings as “dangerous” for their page, and therefore they made you quit. If this is correct, how do you react, from a more metapolitical point of view, to their actions against your ideas, and did their actions offer you a better chance to exercise your ideas and focus more on Right On?
The editor of Counter-Currents broke off contact with me after I continued to criticize his Atlanticist positions regarding Ukraine. I think he had a peculiarly American Cold War attitude towards Russia and Communism, which was already passé even in the more avant-garde nationalist circles of that era. It’s very disappointing that he would take the side of NATO, the EU, and the American foreign policy establishment out of a Cold War fear of cartoonish Russian Communism, which only exists in the minds of American propagandists. It’s doubly perplexing as he publishes the work of Francis Parker Yockey, who praised Stalin for turning against the West and against Zionism in 1948. It’s not as if he’s ignorant of alternatives to the Cold War paradigm, he just willfully chose to ignore them. It’s quite absurd when basically every nationalist party in Europe, including Jobbik, the Front National, the NPD, Golden Dawn, Ataka, and so on is on the side of Novorossiya. I think Right On is more in tune with the political realities as understood by these parties and the deeper geopolitical reality of the struggle for European liberation. This means, of course, friendship with Russia, Russia as an ally of a Europe free from NATO and international capitalism. Certainly, Russia is not perfect. Putin is surrounded by oligarchs and fifth columnists himself. But he is instinctively a Russian patriot, in that he wants Russia to be a great power, and he understands that Russia cannot be a great power under the heel of the United States and the international oligarchy. The association of Right On with Arktos puts Right On on the cutting edge of so-called “New Right” thought in English. This is the real ideological laboratory. The failed policies of conservatives in the past, going back from the collapse of the European empires in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East, sparked a new movement to reexamine the basic tenets of conservative ideology. From this long march of ideological soul-searching, we have seen a mighty critique of globalization, free markets, immigration, and liberalism in general emerge, stripped of the reactionary dross and bourgeois concerns of the old Right. The geopolitics of the New Right is resolutely pro-Russian. I think much of the American Right is mired in the concerns that hampered the European Right back in the days of the Algerian War. The American Right is stuck with a sort of simplistic defense of a vaguely defined “White race,” or more broadly “the West.” I think most American Right-wing outfits, even if they brand themselves as “alternative Right,” do not really present an alternative to liberalism. They simply want it to be White. Europe has evolved past that. They have a developed an intellectual critique of liberalism, and they have people in the streets living it out. Right On, being based in Europe, has been exposed to this living world of nationalism as represented by various political parties and thinkers. Whereas in the United States, true nationalism is a fringe movement powered by disgruntled youth and socially maladjusted men, in Europe it is a vibrant thing that has a long heritage. It cuts across the political spectrum, making appeals to social and economic well-being as much as to mere patriotic sentiment. It is really seeking to unite the nation. This atmosphere pervades the work at Right On. We have a sense that it is part of something bigger, rather than angry, isolated men pounding away at their keyboards.
Now I am going to move away from the main subjects of this interview and talk about a plague that has torn up not only families, societies, and generations, but has also cut many ideologies in half. I am speaking of drugs. Since I began writing for Motpol, I often get the question of why I focus so much on depraved drug addicts and alcoholics. What I have been focusing on is how we can extract the values we find in some of the more interesting people such as, for example, the late author and alcoholic Charles Bukowski. Through Bukowski’s drunken writings, we find other perspectives on modern society. Drug culture is a complex term. It manifests itself across a huge variety of different lifestyles, subcultures, and classes. There is a drug for every feeling and occasion. Jünger was very pedantic when he wrote about his own experiences with drugs in Annäherungen. What he found through his experiences was mostly negative, but he also saw wine and beer as being domesticated in the Western world, and therefore a heritage we not only have the right to make use of but that we can also exploit on higher occasions. What are your thoughts on drugs and alcohol in a future, better society? Will we be able to overthrow the bad habits of self-destruction that the youth of today face in drugs, and find a higher meaning for life in them, and should the use of domesticated drugs like alcohol still be permitted?
The real social ill is not drugs, but alienation. People turn to frequent drug use because their lives are painful or empty. I think many of the great authors who used drugs were very critical of their society, especially modern bourgeois society. The French Decadents like Baudelaire were notorious drug users and alcoholics, but they were also absolutely correct about the empty nature of modernity. It’s funny that we associate modern drug culture with the Left or the extreme Left given that many of the first people to write about using drugs were men of the Right who, in many cases, were very aristocratic in their bearing and appalled by the consequences of the French Revolution. Baudelaire called Joseph de Maistre his maître à penser, and the author of Confessions of an English Opium Eater, Thomas de Quincey, was a High Tory. These people turned to “artificial paradises” because of their discontent with the modern world. Those who were part of the first rounds of literary drug abuse, namely that of the Romantics and the Decadents, were extremely critical of the mass, industrial, soulless world. I think that when we find a higher purpose in life, drug abuse will cease to be a major problem. I think much of the youth experimentation with drugs, and even the abuse of drugs by young people, emerges from a similar sense of alienation. We observe the massive drug problem in the United States primarily in those areas that have been hit by deindustrialization, or in economically depressed rural areas. These people are turning to drugs as an escape from the horrors of our current situation. But I am no puritan. I think drugs can be used responsibly. Any future where men cannot gather to raise a toast to a worthy fellow is not one I’d like to be part of. As with everything, the question of drug use is really one of moderation, the necessity of achieving a golden mean. Now of course, it’s very unlikely that substances such as opiates could be used moderately apart from being administered by a medical professional. Drugs that should only be used for medical purposes should be controlled by doctors. Every drug is different and should be controlled with differing levels of strictness. Certainly, in an authentic culture, what we call drug culture will not exist. There will be no glorification of doing drugs for the sake of doing drugs. Of course, drugs will exist and people will take them, but they won’t feel compelled to overindulge. Moreover, our political movements and their leadership should hold themselves to higher standards and avoid drugs when engaged in active work. They must embody this newer, healthier future. Ultimately, the solution to the drug problem is the solution to our greater social problems. Namely, we must end the alienation caused by atomizing liberal capitalism.
This is the second interview I’ve done. The first was with Marcus “The Golden One” Follin, and I want to ask you about the same thing that I asked him about, namely the fact that healthier nationalist forces are growing in Eastern Europe. Do you think Europe as a civilization will adopt this wave of change, and thereby bring about the fall of the European Union?
I’m very pleased with the euroskepticism of the Visegrád Four: Hungary, Poland, the Czech Republic, and Slovakia. I’m particularly impressed by Hungary, where the mainstream has actually moved closer to nationalism due to the pressure from Jobbik, in contrast to many nationalist parties in Western Europe that have pursued courses of “de-demonization” where they move away from more “extreme” nationalist positions. Moreover, Orbán’s admiration for Putin, combined with Jobbik’s pro-Russian geopolitics, demonstrates good will, a will to put historical grudges from the Cold War behind us, and realize that all the peoples of the vast European continent are engaged in a common struggle to free themselves from the forces of global liberalism as represented by the EU, NATO, and the various international economic and financial mechanisms associated with these regimes. Of course, the reality of removing themselves from the EU may be very difficult. The willingness of Greece to bow before the demands of the EU and the European Central Bank is not a positive sign, though perhaps it attests more to the willingness of the so-called Left, represented by Syriza, to abandon its resistance to capitalism and embrace a vicious neo-liberal austerity package than it does to the innate problems of ending EU domination. I think Hungary is better positioned than Greece because it has yet to reach the state of absolute debt slavery that has been foisted upon Greece. Though even in the Greek case, how long can they continue to extract every last cent from their people before such a system collapses into open revolt? The collapse of the EU is a matter of time. The main issue is how much damage will it do before it finally gives up. I think even the Western Europeans, who have a longer history of liberalism and whose economies are stronger, are seeing that the EU structure is not helping anyone and that it is fundamentally doomed. There is talk of a Brexit, and this movement counts among its supporters people as ideologically varied as Nigel Farage and George Galloway, which indicates the combined social and national critique one can make of the EU. It is both a vehicle for neo-liberal capitalism and a globalist assault on national sovereignty. Also, the rise of the Front National in France on an anti-austerity, anti-EU platform suggests that there is growing euroskepticism in France as well. And moreover, it’s never been a solely “frontiste” issue – there is a long French tradition of defending sovereignty going back to Charles de Gaulle, who also challenged NATO. And even the French Communist Party under Georges Marchais in the 1980s was sounding the alarm about the problem of mass immigration. In the anti-EU movement, we are seeing a convergence of forces that have been growing for a long time: a combination of hostility towards free trade, the erosion of national identity, unrestricted immigration, and the limitation of national sovereignty. I think it was natural that the East would be at the head of pack, because it lacks the heritage of extreme liberalism, both socially and economically, but there was also a current in the West just waiting to be unleashed as soon as the conditions were favorable. I do not believe that the EU will exist in its present form in 10 years.
Since the Industrial Revolution, we have seen both excellent and horrible leaders come and go. Some go down in history in a rain of bullets. You often write about leaders in red. Which of these men has made the biggest impression on you?
I assume that leaders in red means Communists. I would have to say that the most important Communist leader, the one who left the most enduring mark upon the world, has to be Joseph Stalin. I do not mean to say that Stalin was a perfect ruler whose system is applicable everywhere, nor do I mean that he did not commit serious mistakes. The reasons for this are geopolitical and cultural. He saved Russia from the West and its culture, and he built Russia up as a future base of opposition to Western liberalism. The reason Stalin has immense value is that he prevented Russia from becoming a Westernized, pro-globalist, pro-Atlanticist, socially liberalized country. The great struggle for Eurasian civilization would have been stillborn had it not been for Stalin. Firstly, he deserves respect for restoring the traditional order of the family in the Soviet Union, restricting divorce and abortion. Then, his defeat of the Trotskyite faction was a watershed moment in Soviet history. To contrast the characters of Stalin and Trotsky, we can simply note that Stalin funded the Revolution by robbing banks, while Trotsky funded it through a trip to New York City to meet with wealthy bankers and businessmen. The choice for the future of Russia couldn’t be clearer: a man who emerged from actual revolutionary practice against a man who had many connections with wealthy foreigners. Trotsky’s internationalism was clearly a facade for international finance. He wanted to integrate Russia into a globalist network. On the other hand, Stalin’s socialism in one country defended the embryonic Communist state while appealing to the national heritage that had given birth to it. The political war between Stalin and Trotsky was also a culture war, with the Stalinists on the side of the traditional family, traditional art embodied in “socialist realism,” and traditional music as dictated by the Zhdanov Doctrine, while the Trotskyites were in favor of the replacement of the family and radical experimentation in culture. The socialists who rallied to Trotskyism, especially in the United States, would later form the basis for the CIA’s sponsorship of movements such as modern art, which was funded through the Congress for Cultural Freedom that emerged during the Cold War. The ease with which Communist revolutionaries turned into anti-Stalinist agents for America says a lot about the Trotskyites. They had no loyalty to their country. Finally, it was really the Cold War that sealed the historical importance of Stalin. With the defeat of Germany, the world was left with two superpowers, the USA and the USSR. The USA was very interested in doing things like using the UN to essentially create a body for global governance where all nations would be subject to binding UN votes, with nuclear energy being controlled by the UN under the Baruch Plan. These were basically the building blocks of one-world government under the management of Western capitalists, who encouraged “convergence” and ”international cooperation” as thinly disguised attempts at global control. Stalin’s most enduring act was to reject the American globalist utopian future. This preserved the possibility for the emergence of a multipolar world out of the bipolar system. Whatever his mistakes, by choosing the Cold War over convergence with the West, he gave Russia its independence as a great civilization. Of course this all took place within the context of bipolarity, and not true multipolarity, but the first and foremost requirement for the multipolar world is to prevent unipolar global hegemony. Stalin did so, splendidly. It’s also noteworthy that he turned against the Zionists, executing Zionist conspirators in Czechoslovakia and purging rootless cosmopolitans from cultural institutions. Whatever his flaws, and indeed there were many, some quite appalling, the fact that there is a living movement against the global hegemony of liberalism, Zionism, and global capitalism owes everything to Stalin.
Goebbels once wrote in his diary, “Socialism can exist without nationalism but nationalism cannot exist without socialism.” What do you think of this statement?
Purely international socialism has only existed in the minds of theorists. All socialism in the real world had and continues to have a national component. The first arena of politics is always the nation, and all international politics emerges from relations between nations. The Marxist idea, which is the theoretical basis for international socialism, is lacking because it operates almost solely in the temporal dimension, the dimension of time. It is focused solely on the historical evolution of the class struggle. What Marx lacked was the spatial dimension, an understanding of how the politics of class plays out across the globe. He merely assumed that every place on Earth would duplicate the European model of development from a primitive society through feudalism and capitalism, until reaching Communism. The real-world development of socialist revolutions would not follow this theoretical framework. The spatial factor of socialist class struggle is just as important, if not more so. And this spatial factor takes the form of national struggle. There is conflict between the foreign capitalist elite and the people of colonized nations; there is conflict within the nation between the wealthy urban elite and the impoverished peasantry; and today there is conflict between the international financial oligarchy, who can jet off to whatever place suits them the best, and those people who remain rooted in the nation. Seeing things spatially implies that class conflict is also national conflict against foreign capitalists, and a cultural conflict between the wealthy cosmopolitan urban elites and the patriotic masses. Ultimately, the ultimate spatial politics of capitalism leads to a “xenocracy,” a rule by aliens, whether they appear as foreign colonizers, or as out-of-touch cosmopolitan elites disconnected from the rest of the country, which might be reduced to peripheral regions exploited by large commercial centers, which is essentially the internal equivalent of exploited colonies. Socialism is realized by national liberation, the return of the ownership of the nation to the people of the nation. The element that drove socialist revolutions across the globe was the nationalist element. We saw it with Ho Chi Minh, Castro, and Mao, as Communist revolutionaries, as much as with non-Marxist socialists like Nasser, Gaddafi, and Perón. We see the intimate connection between socialism and nationalism quite clearly when we count the innumerable socialist organizations that have given themselves the name of “national liberation front.” Moreover, there was a fundamental truth recognized by Arthur Moeller van den Bruck, the great German Conservative Revolutionary, who stated that “every people has its own socialism.” All socialism is organized in the deeper cultural context of the nation, and it builds upon its distinct essence. Russian socialism will not be the same as Arab socialism. Socialism, where the control of the economy is returned to the people, also implies that the particular qualities of the people are imprinted on the economy. Thus, all socialism that has ever existed is national, as it operates first and foremost on the national scale, directed by the people of the nation who carry the heritage of the nation. Moreover, socialism’s populist appeal is a nationalist one. The common man is always far more likely to carry the cause of the nation, as opposed to the wealthy urban cosmopolitan, especially in an age where the elite is totally globalized. The only nationalism that can exist without socialism is a false and nationally corrosive one, a cynical nationalism used by the wealthy to whip the masses up into a frenzy in order to use them as cannon fodder. This bourgeois facade of nationalism simply leads to further internationalism, the expansion of the global marketplace, and further dependence on globalism on the part of colonized nations. This is false nationalism in the service of globalism, as we see in the United States, where patriotic sentiments are directed towards destroying the nations of the Middle East in order to assimilate them into the American-based international financial hegemony. In an age of globalism, nationalism can only be socialist. The winners of the capitalist system are the internationalist oligarchy, while the losers are the peoples of the various nations who cannot simply follow global flows of capital. Nationalism and socialism are both sides of the same coin. Nationalism means to put the nation first, to return control of the nation to the people of the nation, which necessarily means to return the economy to the people. A nation is a collective. It must be managed on collective principles. Every single member must be involved in building it, and those who seek to parasitically exploit it must be dealt with as traitors.
Despite your youth, you translate various important and interesting articles from French to English dealing with heavy subjects. As you said, there was a gap to be filled. When and why did you start to learn the French language?
I started to learn French in my seventh year of schooling, and I continued it into university. I chose to study French because my grandfather was of French Canadian descent. I felt closer to French culture and heritage than I did to Spanish culture, which was the only other choice of language offered at my school. I suppose I continued with the language for both practical and sentimental reasons, the practical reason being that universities generally look for foreign language classes when looking through applications for admittance, whereas the sentimental reason was my appreciation for the great French literary tradition, particularly figures such as Baudelaire, Huysmans, Rimbaud, and the much under-appreciated Villiers de l’Isle-Adam. I also enjoy Louis-Ferdinand Céline, whom I consider to be the greatest writer of the twentieth century, but his daunting idiomatic style has limited me to reading him in English translation. And as I politically developed, of course my Francophile tendencies were strongly bolstered by my encounter with the absolutely brilliant work of Alain de Benoist, who is a living hero to me, and I have the good fortune to have his kind and generous help in editing and translating his interviews for Right On. Yet, as much as I enjoy French, which I could spend a lifetime further developing my skills in, I often feel like learning German, Russian, or Italian, as I come across the vast wealth of material in those languages that is absolutely essential to my intellectual and political cause. I would encourage others interested in my perspectives to learn other languages and start filling in the missing body of work in English.
Finally, a quick question for our younger readers. If you were to choose a book which introduces and exposes the young audience to a more healthy culture and ideology, which would you recommend?
Plato’s Republic. It was the beginning of my philosophical journey, and it gave me a sense of the universal order and a sense of political order. It glorifies the higher man, the enlightened initiate, yet rejects the crass materialism that bases rank upon money, instead exalting cooperation and brotherhood. This coexistence of material equality with spiritual hierarchy is something I admire about the vision of the Republic. It was this vision of the world that the great neo-Platonists built upon, that Christian and Islamic Platonists built upon, that the traditionalism of Evola and Guénon built upon, and that inspired the radical political praxis of Giorgio Freda. It will definitely be the beginning of a great journey for those who seek to understand it.