"Our problem is democracy. Democracy is a dangerous, malignant form of government which tends to degenerate, sometimes slowly and sometimes with shocking, gut-wrenching speed, into tyranny and chaos. You’ve been taught to worship democracy. This is because you are ruled by democracy. If you were ruled by the Slime Beast of Vega, you would worship the Slime Beast of Vega."
Dark Enlightenment, also known as Neoreactionaryism (shortened to: DE and NRx respectively) is a broadly Reactionary, economically and culturally right to far-right and civically varied (but prominently Post-Libertarian) ideology, however, some (such as Joshua Tait) say that NRx (Mencius Moldbug) is reactionary only in regards of politics, while maintaining positions usually described as socially progressive. NRx originates from the writing of a couple right-wing bloggers from the mid 2000's.
Neoreactionaryism opposes Democracy, Egalitarianism and the common consensus that the progress of history leads to liberty and enlightenment and the abolition of absolutism in favor of democracy and/or constitutional monarchy, considering itself the antithesis of Enlightenment Thought. It is in favor of the re-adoption of systems of governance such as Absolute Monarchy and Cameralism or other systems such as Neocameralism.
NRx is often associated with " Race-Realism", but despite what mainstream sources make an impression of, this is not included in the theory and may be confused on first glance because of risky wording. (see Hyper Racism).
NRx has also been described as Neo-Fascist by journalists and commentators, and is seen as a major influence on the modern Alt-Right movement. However NRx Theorists typically denounce the Alt-Right and Fascism
The Neoreactionary movement's ideological foundations consist of multiple ideas that are discussed between the NRx movement's members but may or may not be shared between them.
These include but are not limited to:
Post-Libertarianism is a school of thought stemming from Libertarianism, born out of the need to rectify its contradictions, this is done through a rejection of dogmatic opposition to any government intervention beyond the bare minimum, and instead embracing a more pragmatic approach, in favor of a more proactive government for the sake of maintaining individual liberty, and while this doesn't entail authoritarianism, it's enough for Post-Libertarianism to effectively become dealigned from Libertarianism. While not being libertarian, post-libertarianism still maintains a lot of libertarian ideas such as an affinity towards free markets, skepticism towards state control of information and anti-interventionism.
Formalism is the belief that actual power and recognised power (especially in the form of ownership) should align as closely as possible. The belief in formalism makes the Neoreactionary movement especially skeptical of democratic forms of government, favouring forms of government based on ownership.
It is the general belief that absolutist systems of governance work best, specifically when the line of succession is clear (which coincides with Moldbug's criticism of dictatorship).
Royalists don't favor a particular mode of succession; some favoring something akin to an elective monarchy (see Neocameralism below) while others favor hereditary monarchism, and such; and is less so an indication of a particular view on the legal process of monarchies than it is an indication of support for the reality of the 'virtue' of monarchism (stability and order, which NRx's generally associate with "right-wing" politics and liberty in general).
Neocameralism is a form of government proposed by Mencius Moldbug and developed by others as a replacement for representative democracy. Neocameralism is a form of government organised around the profit incentive. As such the Neocameralist system is a system of nigh-absolute rule in which the Monarch-C.E.O. (which Moldbug calls a Delegate, based on the corporate title used by colonial-era Quakers) is accountable to a group of shareholders.
The Neoreactionary movement came up with a lot of neologisms to describe various concepts. Neologisms are perhaps the most influential thing to come out of the movement, appearing in political discourse outside of the movement.
These Neologisms include:
The Cathedral, within the context of Neo-Reactionary discourse, is a term used to refer to a society's intellectual elite meaning a class of people who are able to decide what the average person thinks is true or false, right or wrong and important or unimportant.
Historically this role was fulfilled by religious institutions hence the usage of the term "cathedral", this is intentionally contrasted with the institutions that fulfill the role of the cathedral in the modern age that being Schools, Universities, the Media and the Entertainment industry who largely market themselves as "Secular". It is worth noting that the Cathedral (in it's modern incarnation) is not a formal institution that people belong to, but rather an informal network of leaders of the before-aforementioned institutions that happen to agree on most important matters (Harvard, The New York Times, Disney and The Guardian rarely disagree for example)
- Redpill - Within the context of Neoreactionary discourse "Redpill" is any realisation or experience that disconnects an individual from the established cathedral. The term is a reference to the popular film trilogy The Matrix.
The concept of the Redpill is THE most influential term to come out of the NRx movement, being practically ubiqutous within political discourse on both the left, right, centre and beyond. The term "Redpill" spawned many off-shoots generally named after the specific realisation the redpill provides (including terms Blackpill (Pessimism), Whitepill (Optimism), Greenpill (parnamormalism) and more) and also the combination with the term "Based" forming "Based and Redpilled". The various pills have also expanded into apolitical contexts, especially on dating (examples of dating-specific pills being the Purplepill and the Dogpill) and fitness (example of a fitness-specific pills including the Onionpill).
A variation on the term "Redpill" to have actually come out of the NRx movement is the term Clearpill which is the concept that the best way to come out to political conclusions is to separate yourself from current political factions you have an emotional attachment to and think about policies and systems in an outside context.
The Iron Polygon
The Iron Polygon is an extension of the concept of the Iron Triangle. The concept of the "Iron Polygon" is a neoreactionary idea that describes a system of interlocking societal institutions that mutually reinforce each other to maintain the status quo of a particular political order. According to Neo-Reactionary thought, the Iron Polygon consists of three main institutions: the Cathedral, the Corporate-Managerial Complex, and the Military-Industrial Complex.
- The Cathedral refers to the institutionalized power of the mainstream media, academia, and the government bureaucracy, which Neo-Reactionaries see as an interconnected network that perpetuates a progressive and egalitarian ideology. The Cathedral's power is derived from its ability to control the flow of information and shape public opinion.
- The Corporate-Managerial Complex is the second institution in the Iron Polygon, and it includes large corporations, the financial sector, and the managerial class. The neoreactionaries view this complex as an essential component of the Iron Polygon since it helps maintain the dominant political order by providing resources, expertise, and access to power.
- The Military-Industrial Complex is the third institution in the Iron Polygon. It includes the military, defense contractors, and the intelligence agencies. According to the neoreactionaries, the Military-Industrial Complex provides the necessary force to maintain the political order and protect the interests of the ruling elite.
Together, these three institutions form the Iron Polygon, which the neoreactionaries believe is a self-reinforcing system that is resistant to change or reform. The Iron Polygon ensures that power remains in the hands of the ruling elite and perpetuates a system of governance that the neoreactionaries believe is efficient, stable, and just.
Red and Blue Empire
Also called the Red and Blue Governments - The concepts of the Red and Blue Empires/Governments, clipped to RedGov and BlueGov is a specific power analysis of U.S. politics, it's the notion that the United States is not under the control of a single government, but rather of two each with their own internal and foreign policies.
Those two Empires, being the Military and Police-based Red Empire represented in the U.S. congress by the Republican Party, and the Blue Empire based around every other part of the iron polygon represented by the Democratic Party.
The triangle represents many things to Neo-Reactionaries in terms of political theory, namely, Spandrell’s triangle (the trichotomy), modern division of power within republican states, and contemporary political theory.
The trichotomy, inspired partly on the "three estates of the realm" which existed during the Middle Ages, shows the 3 poles of Neo-Reactionaryism: The techno-capitalists, ethno-nationalists, and theonomists/traditionalists. These, as the three estates did, are supposed to balance each other.
The techno-capitalists, the libertarian-esque branch of Neo-Reactionary thought, is supposed to protect the liberty of individuals, the ethno-nationalists, populist-oriented, are meant to protect the nation where these individuals coexist, and the theonomists are meant to guide and order that nation toward a higher moral and metaphysical aim. Each estate has its own hierarchy, but they nonetheless overlap.
Modern republicanism is based on the division of power within government, and this has, in most republican states, resulted in the creation of three powers. It is here that Neo-Reactionaries see resemblance, once again, with the three estates.
The judicial system is identified as the theocratic branch of the government, "consulting their ancient texts, intoning solemnly to convey the weight of their holy power as they decide what is moral and right for the Nobles and Commoners" as Nick Land puts it. The executive branch is more closely related to the nobility, or capitalists in modern western nations. Lastly, the congress is meant to represent the third estate, and is thus identified by it.
This political model is also used by Nick Land to explain contemporary politics, where the first state (the "Theocrats", which order society toward moral aims, toward "utopia") have descended into what they call "the Cathedral"; which N. Land considers "hyper-calvinist", identified as the left of the triangular model. Thereby, the left is unipolar and converges to a single point; while the right (identified by N. Land as realism, as opposed to utopia) diverges into two points, it is bipolar, divided between individualists; the nobility or capitalists; and collectivists; the working class and nationalists.
An unprincipled exception is a policy that violates some absolute principle of ethics held by the policymaker, but is not openly acknowledged as such a violation.
Types of Societies
Moldbug states that there are 3 types of Societies according to their relationship between opinion and authority:
- Type 1: The Loyal Society is one where public opinion is a matter of state security, thoughts are categorised in two: bad thoughts that are dangerous to the safety of the state and good thoughts that are useful for the state, people are punished for expressing bad thoughts or rewarded for expressing good or ideally both, the state supports a set of official information organs which uses to install good thoughts and prevent and/or prohibit the spreading of bad thoughts into the population.
- Type 2: The Society of Consensus is a society in which the press and media controls the authority, it's hallmark is the phenomenon of spontaneous coordination which consists in produce an official information system which in all other respects resembles that of a type 1 society but which is not responsible to any central authority or institution.
- Type 3: The Open Society is a society where is a free market of divergent ideas and institutions competing which ones are closer to reality. If such a society functions properly, it should eventually decide this issue and become either of the other two types.
NRx isn't an outspoken person and will generally prefer to hang out on the internet. He does not generally have a positive attitude towards things and can be portrayed as rather apathetic.
How to Draw
- Draw a black ball with eyes.
- Draw a gold Trinity Knot.
- Draw a circle around it.
- Above and Below the circle draw 2 lines of increasing length from it.
- Neocameralism - My son and predilect system.
- Landian Accelerationism - Son, why does the sun take so long to die?
- Reactionary Modernism - Fellow internet reactionary.
- Austrian School - My grandfather who taught me economics.
- Hoppeanism - My father taught me about the benefits of monarchies, cultural reactionaryism, and political decentralization.
- Anarcho-Monarchism - Syncretic individualism and monarchy are based and redpilled, also I really like your blog .
- Manosphere - I like how you use the concept of pills for waking up men about the reality of sexual conduct.
- Reactionary Libertarianism - Very good beliefs, dad! You must be writing in my blog.
- Braunism - Fellow Catholic Free-marketer Absolute monarchist.
- Homoconservatism - I have taught you well, Thiel.
- National Libertarianism - You're in the right direction, I know one day you will take the pill.
- Libertarian Monarchism - Hans-Adam II is one of my favorite autocrats.
- Powellism - An excellent man that revolted against the cathedral but was defeated by his psychological warfare.
- Dengism - Post-Deng China is an ideal model for free market statism.
- Lee Kuan-Yew Thought - Singapore is based, also he's on the list of good autocrats.
- Anarcho-Capitalism - "Rothbard is surely one of the ten top philosophers of the twentieth century".
- Social Darwinism -"When individualism and absolutism cooperates"
- Hayekism - I like your skepticism about democracy and your openness to other forms of government also we both enjoy Austrian economics and Carl Schmitt.
- Jacobitism - I'm in favor of reinstating the Stuarts in the British crown.
- Carlism - Spanish Jacobites, I need to say more about why I like him.
- Reactionary Liberalism - "What could an old whig be, if not a reactionary progressive?"
- Traditionalism - It wouldn't be bad if you accept some new ideas but you're still deeply redpilled and based.
- Leopold II Thought - He makes a formalist state, even if you're part of the worst of colonialism you still are far better than the majority of the governments of the Congo.
- Pinochetism - His rule was similar to what a military monarchy would be. A shame he didn't drop republicanism altogether and acknowledged the referendum where he lost.
- American Model - "The fact that an institution is old, and has carried the respect of large populations for decades or centuries, is always a reason to honor and respect it. [The fact that] you oppose Washington, the real organization that exists in the real world, does not mean that you oppose America, the abstract symbol. ... It does not mean that you want to burn or abolish the flag, etc."
- Democratism & Republicanism - Manipulated by the Inner Party.
- Occult Post-Humanism - Son, what the hell is this?
- LesbiaNeoRx - same as the abov- wait you're my granddaughter?
- Moderatism- "The problem with moderation is that the “center” is not fixed. It moves."
- Neoconservatism - The army of the Inner Party.
- Mediacracy - The Press-Controlled State, also controlled by the Inner Party. All decent, reasonable men are horrified by the idea that the government might control the press. None of them seem concerned at all that the press might control the government.
- UKIP - Used to resist the Inner Party, but it went nowhere since they have made Brexit done.
- Soulism - Anti-cathedral escapist anarchist? Ok, now the situation become more confusing.
- Avaritionism - At one side you are more radical Ancap, and against cathedral. In other side you are literally Neo-"State of Nature". Curious.
- Neoliberalism - Master of the Inner Party.
- Social Democracy - Bait and switch tactic.
- Reactionary Socialism - Socialist and Catholic, but is Anti-Enlightenment. This one confuses me.
- Alt-Right - You just a pawn of Cathedral, that was created to mock me? Right? Revolutionary Capitalism is good anyway.
- Neo-Enlightenment - My opposite, but we both like Kant and Austrian economics.
- Socialism - The brain of the cathedral.
- Progressivism - The voice of the cathedral.
- Catholic Theocracy - Literally lives in a cathedral.
- An Open Letter to Open-Minded Progressives by Curtis Yarvin
- A Gentle Introduction to Unqualified Reservations by Curtis Yarvin
- Moldbug on Carlyle by Curtis Yarvin
- The Dark Enlightenment by Nick Land
- Ben Shapiro: What is the Dark Enlightenment? by politicalInsights
- An Introduction to the Dark Enlightenment Philosophy by Ubersoy
- Accelerationism, The Dark Enlightenment and The Strange Life of Nick Land by Sisyphus55
- Critical Based Theory #8 | Ancient Liberty and The Dark Enlightenment by Lotuseaters
- Why Democracy doesn't Work Explained with Chess-Curtis Yarvin by cache
- Talking $%#@! About Neoreactionary Curtis Yarvin by Sitch & Adam and ShortFatOtaku
- Peter Thiel on Anti-Anti-Anti-Anti Classical Liberalism by Oxford Union
- Three Motivations for “State Capacity Libertarianism” by Samuel Hammond
- From Mises to Carlyle: My Sick Journey to the Dark Side of the Force by Mencius Moldbug
- Good government as good customer service
- Against political freedom
- Open Letter to Open Minded Progressives by Mencius Moldbug
- Peter Thiel | Nationalism Breaks the Dogma Machine | National Conservatism Conference II by National Conservatism
- Anarcho-NRx: A Case For Neo Reactionary Anarcho-Monarchism by Stateless Sovereign
- Mencius Moldbug and Neoreaction - Key Thinkers of the Radical Right: Behind the New Threat to Liberal Democracy by Joshua Tait - pp. 187–203
- The neo-fascist philosophy that underpins both the alt-right and Silicon Valley technophiles by Olivia Goldhill
- On Neoreaction by Roger Burrows
- Monarchism and Fascism Today in "Gray Mirror" by Curtis Yarvin
- The Neoreactionary Trichotomy by Charlemagne
- Significant Triangles by Nick Land
- From Cromer to Romer and Back Again: Colonialism for the 21st Century by Mencius Moldbug