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Sunday, May 30, 2010

Solzhenitsyn & The Jews

Brother Nathanael

“DID HITLER WANT WAR?” asks the internationally renowned author and political analyst, Pat Buchanan, in his recent book, “Hitler And The Unnecessary War.”

Buchanan answers his own question with a definitive “No” — proving with documented facts that Hitler tried every possible means to avert war with Great Britain and her allies.
Although many reputable figures applaud Buchanan’s assessment of Hitler’s war policy by subtitling his latest literary effort: “Buchanan’s Necessary Book” - the Jews do not see it that way. The only “necessity” for them is to stuff a Jewish gag into the author’s honorable mouth.
No sooner was Buchanan’s book released in May 2008, than Abraham Foxman, Director of the Anti-Defamation League, slandered the highly touted author by calling him a “racist, a patron of white supremacists, a cesspool extremist, and an unrepentant bigot.” How exultant these Jews become when spewing out their venom against noble Gentiles! View Entire Story Here, Here & Here. When Buchanan introduced the book on his FORMER MSNBC column, he wrote: “America went to war where the fighting would mostly be done by kids with names like McAllister, Murphy, and Leroy Brown.” Immediately, the National Jewish Democratic Council demanded that MSNBC remove the article contending that Buchanan “charged the Jews with starting a war they wouldn’t fight in.”
Did MSNBC stand up to the Jews? Of course not. Jews have TOO MUCH POWER in America for that to happen. Buchanan’s article is gone forever and so is his weekly column. Instead, we are left with a brave new world which revolves around Jewish interests and historical deceit.
Now MSNBC has turned against their former columnist by accusing Buchanan of “rampaging against the Jews” simply because he wrote, (on his own Website), that the nomination of Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court brings a “disproportionate 33% of Jews” to the nation’s highest judicial bench.
And the Jewish Democratic Council continues to harass Pat Buchanan, now DEMANDING, (Jews don’t ask - they DEMAND), that the large newspaper syndicate, Creators.com, “pull down” his latest column on Kagan and “stop his conspiratorial screeds.” View Jew Demand Here.
Is Buchanan right or wrong about Kagan? Is he right or wrong about Hitler? Facts are facts. But Jews fear documented evidence that exposes their lust for power and control.


IN HIS FIRST MAJOR WORK after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, Alexander Solzhenitsyn published his final masterwork, “Two Hundred Years Together.”
Solzhenitsyn’s subject is the history of Jews in Russia with an emphasis on Jewry’s role in the Bolshevik Revolution and the Soviet purges. Exposing Bolshevik Jewish leaders as perpetrators of the mass murders of over 60 million Russian Christians and the complicity of the Jewish community, Solzhenitsyn broke the last taboo on the history of Russia’s most painful period.
Was Solzhenitsyn’s book translated into English like the rest of his books? No. The Jews who own and control the major publishing houses of the West fear its contents.
The inaugural review by the Moscow Times of Two Hundred Years Together put forth a warning to Solzhenitsyn: “Your book will be controversial, perhaps even censured by the Western world. Your final years will be looked upon as a troubled prophetic mission.”
That “mission” encountered its initial “trouble” when the Jewish-owned publishing houses of the West, rather than acknowledging the historical realities presented by the author, failed to come to terms with the deeper moral concerns that informed Solzhenitsyn’s analysis of Jewish and Russian relations during the Soviet period.
Although Solzhenitsyn carefully chronicles the deeds and misdeeds of Jews and Russians alike and pleads for mutual repentance on the part of both, instead, the Jewish censors approached the book in the spirit of a malicious prosecutor presenting to a jury “hidden motives” of “Jew-baiting” and “anti-Semitism.” Thus the book remains only in its Russian version with no English translation in sight. View Entire Story Here, Here & Here.
Who wins and who loses? The Jews win by forbidding the Western world a huge segment of very important history. Who loses? Those whose search for truth in historical events is stymied by the imposers of a false version of the past in a brave new Jewish world.


“TODAY AMERICA IS RULED BY PROPAGANDA,” wrote Paul Craig Roberts, economist, author, and former Assistant Treasury Secretary, in his “Goodbye” article, “Truth Has Fallen and Taken Liberty With It.”
Expanding on his thesis, Roberts continued, “Americans have little access to the truth and little ability to recognize it. Truth is an unwelcome entity. It is disturbing. It is off limits. Those who speak it run the risk of being branded an anti-Semite or a conspiracy theorist.”
Developing his argument, Roberts allows his readers a look into his private life and the opposition he encountered from the mainstream press:
“I was associate editor and columnist for the Wall Street Journal. I was Business Week’s first outside columnist, a position I held for 15 years.
I was columnist for a decade for Scripps Howard News Service, carried in 300 newspapers. I was a contributor to the New York Times and a regular feature in the Los Angeles Times. But for the last six years I have been banned from the mainstream media.
My last column in the New York Times appeared in January, 2004 where I addressed the off shoring of US jobs. The article produced live coverage by C-Span and a debate was launched. No such thing could happen today.” View Entire Story Here.
Roberts closes his piece by announcing that he is “signing off” due to the relentless censorship of the media masters who determine whose pen will be published and whose will be extinguished.
As the saying goes, “The inquisitor’s prohibited list is an unerring guide for discovering the truth.”
For in a brave new world, the Jewish censors have nothing to fear but the people themselves. First they disarm us. Then they silence us. But the people — (as history, which cannot lie, teaches us) — rise up and cast out the offenders. It’s bound to happen in America too. AND, it may happen soon…

IMPORTANT-Gnosticism from a Non-Voegelinian Perspective, Part I

Published on The Brussels Journal (http://www.brusselsjournal.com)

Gnosticism from a Non-Voegelinian Perspective, Part I

Created 2010-05-27 23:44
The trend of politics in the Western nations since Eric Voegelin’s death in 1986 has made his work increasingly relevant to any philosophically rigorous conservatism or traditionalism. In particular, Voegelin’s argument that liberalism and its Leftwing metastases constitute an evangelical religious movement, mimicking and distorting Christianity, has gained currency. The pronounced irrational character of the “Global Warming” cult and the obvious messianism of Barack Hussein Obama’s presidency have together sharpened the perception that contemporary Leftwing politics shares with history’s specimen-type doctrinally intransigent sects an absolute intolerance for dissent, even for discussion, along with a conviction of perfect certainty in all things. The sudden experience of Leftwing triumph attests that, indeed, utopian radicalism draws its strength from a deep well of resentment that puts it in conflict, not merely with those whom it regards as heterodox, but also with the inalterable structure of reality. Voegelin argued – in The New Science of Politics (1952), Science Politics & Gnosticism (1965), and throughout Order and History (1957-65) – that the rebellion against reality was a recurrent affliction of civilized life; he pointed to the acute anticosmic sects of Late Antiquity as offering a paradigm of the phenomenon and expanded the scholarly designation of them as “Gnosticism” to cover insurgent ideological doctrines of the modern period, particularly Marxism and National Socialism.
Thus Lawrence Auster, creator and supervisor of the View from the Right website, explicitly links his understanding of the Left and his idea of his own conservatism to Voegelin’s argument that modernity is essentially Gnostic. A somewhat less focused acknowledgment that the Left is cultic in its behavior has surfaced now and then at The American Thinker and the name Voegelin has occurred in that venue. Again, nationally syndicated columnist and radio-host Dennis Prager, while not citing Voegelin, has nevertheless in a recent essay declared explicitly that Left-Liberalism is a religion and can be understand in no other way. In my own contributions to The Brussels Journal and in various print articles (for example, in a recent Modern Age essay on V. S. Naipaul) I have frequently invoked Voegelin, often quoting his pithy sentences, as a rich and clairvoyant explicator of our straitened times. Are we certain, however, that Voegelin’s disapprobation of Gnosticism is valid? And might Voegelin’s insistent parallelisms of the ancient and the modern be a result of an idiosyncratic view?
The topical literature is fortunately large. It reaches back to the Late Antique primary texts of Gnosticism – such as the Valentinian Gospel of Truth (ca. 150) – and the accompanying critical and anti-heretical discourses of the philosophers and the Church Fathers; and it embraces a rich scholarly investigation beginning in the early Nineteenth Century, continuing to the present. What do the ancient sources tell us about Gnosticism? And what does the scholarship of Voegelin’s Nineteenth-Century precursors, his contemporaries, and his successors tell us about it?

I. Let us begin with two writers from the period of Roman Imperial decline, a phase of Mediterranean history that one might justly describe as a factory – working on double-shift – of apocalyptic ideas and eclectic religious innovations. Both Plotinus (204-270) and Augustine (354-430), the former an adherent of the Platonic School of philosophy and the latter a Platonizing Christian who had belonged for ten years to the most organized of the Gnostic sects, commented extensively on the Gnostics. Plotinus’ treatise, Against the Gnostics, bears appositely on its object in that Gnostic writers like Valentinus (100-160) ransacked elements of the original Platonism in building their syncretic systems, while at the same time attacking basic tenets of the original, positive Platonism; it is likely that Plotinus had the Valentinians particularly in mind in making his discussion. The zenith of Valentinian Gnosticism, considered as an active movement, indeed coincides with Plotinus’ activity as a teacher in Rome. Augustine, a driven religious seeker, sojourned among the Manichaeans as an auditor during the decade from 374 to 384; but he later rejected Manichaeism on the basis of Platonic argument and eventually, Platonic logic being his way station, he converted to Roman Catholicism.
The texts of Plotinus and Augustine tell us that Gnosticism remained peculiarly and tenaciously implicated in the fabric of Late Antique society, against whose existing institutions and convictions the devotees of Gnosis(“Secret Knowledge”) nevertheless pitted themselves in an often fanatically gainsaying manner; and this was the case whatever forms their organization took or whatever the specific tenets of their sect. There is something noticeably parasitic about Gnosticism, which plagiarizes from what it condemns. Plotinus and Augustine also interest us as sources for Gnosticism because Plotinus, for his part, harbored intense suspicion about Christianity, in respect of which, like his contemporary Celsus, he reserved no friendliness or comity; therefore when the Plotinian judgment of Gnosticism parallels the Augustinian, after the Saint’s conversion, the similarity indicates an objective, a true, or let us say, at least, a plausible assessment of the thing at issue.
Remarkably, Plotinus associates Gnosticism with economic resentment, attributing to the sectarians the disposition that, “Wealth and poverty, and all the inequalities of that order are made ground of complaint.” Plotinus notes by way of sane counterargument that, “This is to ignore that the Sage demands no equality in such matters,” because “he cannot think that to own many things is to be richer or that the powerful have the better of the simple.” (Mackenna’s translation, as throughout) The Gnostics, in Plotinus’ description, ascribe to certain kinds of difference an evil character, interpreting those differences as signs that the maker of this world must have created it through an intention evil in itself, hence also supremely reprehensible and a fit object of rebellion. In condemning Creation, the Gnostics likewise condemn the Creator. Plotinus therefore refers to the Gnostics as “those… that censure the constitution of the Cosmos” and who “do not understand what they are doing or where this audacity leads them.”
Logically, seeing that they belong to the universe, if the Gnostics judged the universe wicked, the judgment would implicate them. But Gnostic thinking evades logic. The Gnostic sees in himself a radical self-legitimizing exception, a rare instance of positive difference tantamount to election.
Plotinus, like his revered Plato, understood the natural order as hierarchical. The cosmos for Plotinus is thus intelligible because it corresponds to an intelligent design, implying in turn an intelligent – hence also a morally benevolent – designer. Plotinus emphatically equates the intelligent, that is to say the articulate and self-consistent, with the good, and he insists on the unity of existence. In the Plotinian formula: “The Good, the Principle, is simplex, and, correspondingly, primal”; and “it is an integral Unity.” The cosmos being one and whole, it cannot be in a state of war with itself, or in a state of deficiency; and likewise the divine principle being one and whole, it cannot be in a state of war with itself, or in a state of deficiency. Nor can the cosmos, because it derives from the divine principle, be in a state of war with the divine principle. Once again in the formula: “When we speak of the One and when we speak of the Good we must recognize an identical nature.”
In making these assertions, Plotinus remains in consistency with the fundamental law of logic and ontology: Namely that a thing cannot simultaneously both be and not be; and that a thing cannot simultaneously both bewhat it is and not be what it is.
Plotinus judges Gnostic discourse to be willfully pleonastic in its procedures – it multiplies principles unnecessarily so as to circumvent identity – and thus also to be an insuperable logical scandal. Yet Plotinus objects to Gnosticism just as much on esthetic grounds as on purely logical ones, the Gnostic systems appearing to him as grossly inelegant precisely because of their constant recourse to “superfluous distinctions.” These latter, the “superfluous distinctions,” belong to Gnostic censure of the cosmos in that they express the sectarian’s “grudge of any share with one’s fellows,” even where it concerns normative agreement about objective matters. It follows that the Gnostic is relentless in his “pursuit of advantage” over those who fault his premises or point out flaws in his reasoning. In this last observation Plotinus ascribes to Gnosticism the antinomian characterremarked by all commentary subsequent to his own.
The illuminatus, in Plotinus’ words, “Carps at Providence and the Lord of Providence.” So too the illuminatus “scorns every law known to us,” while of “immemorial virtue and all restraint” he “makes… a laughing stock, lest any loveliness be seen on earth.” The doctrine of the illuminatus, making use of sarcasm and denunciation, “cuts at the root of all orderly living.” As Plotinus says of the illuminati, “They know nothing good here,” for to acknowledge goodness would be to disavow total moral superiority.
Plotinus notices that the Gnostics avoid giving definitions or explanations. Thus while the Gnostics claim moral superiority to other people, they disdain any discussion of virtue: “We are not told [by the illuminati] what virtue is or under what different kinds it appears; there is no word of all the numerous and noble reflections upon it that have come down to us from the ancients.” If anyone were to inquire directly of the Gnostics about these matters, the Gnostics would reply with their cryptic, “Look to God.” The Gnostic exclusion of the literary archive is particularly striking. In addition to being antinomian and anticosmic in their disposition, the Gnostics, as Plotinus describes them, are also anti-historical. The phrase, “Look to God,” irritates Plotinus because God, in his understanding, is rational and provides definitions and explanations, at least by indirection through his works. Plato’s dialogues are famous for Socrates’ insistence on defining terms precisely.

II. When Gnostics say, “Look to God,” they are invoking the knowledge-without-experience, the special knowledge, that the word Gnosis denotes. Such proprietary knowledge they specifically refuse to share with outsiders because possession of it – or the claim to possess it, for that is all that the outsider has – is what differentiates the illuminati from the vulgate. Thus by virtue (so to speak) of their special knowledge, the Gnostics consider themselves elect. They are an extreme in-group phenomenon. Under this conviction, they “proceed to assert that Providence cares for them alone.” When the Hidden God abolishes the corrupt world, only those whose being has been transfigured by secret knowledge will remain, and they, too, shall be as gods. Compared to those in whom the secret knowledge does not reside, and who are therefore not transfigured, the illuminatiare already gods. They may thus mock and revile their ontological inferiors.
We have remarked that Plotinus discerns in the Gnostic disposition several types of resentment: Envy of standing and wealth in the social order, with a concomitant and hypocritical advantage seeking; jealously against the structure of existence, and disdain for the past and for its inheritance in the present. Correlated with “despising the world and all that is in it,” as Plotinus remarks, is the Gnostic orientation to a post-apocalyptic future in whose realization all attitudes contrary to the Gnostic attitude shall be humiliated and banished while the Gnostic antipathy to tradition will be justified in a triumph. Plotinus writes of the Gnostics that, “All they care for is something else [than the structure of existence in the present] to which they will at some future time apply themselves.”
It might surprise modern readers that Plotinus, a mystic of the Neo-Platonic school, should defend the goodness of the material world, but this surprise would stem from an unfortunate modern misconception about Plato and Platonism. For Plato, as for Plotinus, existence has distinguishable aspects – the sensible and the intelligible – but these aspects belong to a unitary whole. Platonism is not dualism, nor is it world-rejection, despite what Friedrich Nietzsche claims in The Twilight of the Idols and The Anti-Christ.
Addressing the Gnostic loathing for physical reality, Plotinus poses rhetorically, “Who that truly perceives the harmony of the Intellectual Realm [the Ideas] could fail, if he has any bent towards music, to answer to the harmony in sensible sounds?” Likewise, Plotinus asks, “What geometrician or arithmetician could fail to take pleasure in the symmetries, correspondences, and principles of order observed in visible things?” Plotinus claims that the Gnostics harbor hatred even for the cosmetic beauty of comely individuals: “Now if the sight of beauty excellently reproduced upon a face hurries the mind to that other Sphere [the Intellectual Realm], surely no one seeing the loveliness lavish in the world of sense – this vast orderliness, the Form which the stars even in their remoteness display – no one could be so dull-witted, so immovable, as not to be carried by all this recollection, and gripped by reverent awe in the thought of all this, so great, sprung from that greatness.” Reviling beauty, which Plotinus ascribes to the Gnostics, would be consistent with their attitude of “censure.”
One remarks the elevation of the commonplace implicit in Plotinus’ words – even the ordinary participates in the cosmic order and therefore justifies the contemplation of it. A certain intellectual democracy is also implicit in the same words, for according to the gist of them non-philosophers, when they respond to cosmetic beauty or the sublimity of nature, respond indeed to the same supernal order as that studied in a more sophisticated way by the philosopher. The ground of philosophy consists in the average person’s openness to reality, his vulnerability to beauty: “The very experience out of which Love arises.” In spurning that experience, and that openness, the illuminati exhibit, as Plotinus puts it, “the perverse pride of despising what was once admired.”
According to Plotinus, Gnostics argue that, “They see no difference between beautiful and ugly forms of body.” It should strike no one, therefore, as unexpected that Gnostics also, in Plotinus’ words, “make no distinction between the ugly and the beautiful in conduct.” This remark communicates with the other, earlier remark in Plotinus’ treatise on Gnostic evasiveness about virtue. To deny beauty in one aspect of existence, the corporeal, is, in principle, to deny it in all other aspects of existence, as for instance in the moral aspect. To equivocate about quality and degree is, moreover, to attack the connection between hierarchy and order, while at the same time establishing a new, crude hierarchy. In this reactionary conception of hierarchy, one difference alone is paramount: The election of the minority elites, guaranteed by their special knowledge, over against the damnation of the majority-preterit. Plotinus need not be referring to the bearing of individuals, but merely to the doctrine in and of itself, when he invokes the word “arrogant” as a label appropriate to Gnosticism.
Although Plotinus never directly remarks the aggressiveness of the illuminati, the existence of his treatise implies it. Plotinus ran a type of school or college, in whose precincts he lectured on the Platonic philosophy. In the Third Century, Platonism functioned in many ways like a religion or as a coherent ethical system, as did also Stoicism and (increasingly) Christianity. In Against the Gnostics, Plotinus is apparently responding formally to disputatious Gnostic infiltration of his lectures, with disruptive objections and derailing pseudo-inquiries during the question-and-answer.
We can understand such aggression as belonging to the inherent intolerance of Gnostic believers for any belief other than their own, an intolerance made worse by the lack of originality in Gnostic doctrine, which appropriates elements of established doctrine and crudely reverses them. By obliterating the model, the sectarian may better advertise his derivative as original.
Plotinus employs an elaborate metaphor to sum up the hypocrisy, as he sees it, of Gnostic anticosmic complaint. It is as though, he writes, “two people inhabit one stately house,” the house, of course, being the cosmos itself. One of these inhabitants, grumbling about the house, “declaims against its plan and against its Architect, but none the less retains his residence in it.” In doing so, “the malcontent imagines himself to be wiser” than his co-dweller; and he thinks of his inability “to bear with necessity” as a higher wisdom. Plotinus’ word, “necessity,” means the structure of existence, as it is given. The grumbler execrates “the soulless stone and timber” out of which the house is constructed. As for the co-dweller, he “makes no complaint,” but rather he “asserts the competency of the Architect.” Plotinus attributes to the disgruntled inhabitant a type of dissimulated envy, “a secret admiration for the beauty of those same ‘stones,’” whose supposed soullessness and degraded materiality he so volubly and inveterately deplores.

III. To move from Plotinus to Augustine entails the elision of complex chapters in the history of Mediterranean civilization. Repeated crises of civil war and cataclysms of the economy led to Diocletian’s drastic reform of the Empire. Diocletian (reigned 284-305) divided the Empire into a Latin western half and a Greek eastern half – which included Syria, Egypt, and Anatolia – each of which was ruled by its own “Augustus” or emperor. Diocletian greatly expanded the administrative bureaucracy and attempted a universal price-freeze to combat inflation of the currency. When new civil wars destroyed the viability of Diocletian’s arrangement, governance of the whole empire shifted to the East, a process accelerated when Constantine the Great (like Diocletian of Balkan origin) made himself sole emperor in 324. During this same politically turbulent period the movements of the German tribes began in earnest, requiring constant military operations along the Rhine and Danube and in Gaul.
During the lifetime of Plotinus, the public religiosity of the Roman upper classes West and East took the form of syncretism, as typified by the eclectic piety of the emperor Alexander Severus (reigned 222-235). Alexander maintained a private chapel in which he displayed – quoting from John Ferguson’s Religions of the Roman Empire (1970) – “a series of statues which included the defied emperors, revered spirits like Apollonius of Tyana, Christ, Abraham, Orpheus and all the others of that character.” According to Ferguson, Alexander “wanted to build a temple to Christ and enthrone him among the other gods.”
If syncretism, which Alexander’s chapel so paradigmatically bodied forth, were a seeming mélange, then the same syncretism in its generous plurality, its willingness to see divinity in all its many and differing guises, would also point to increasingly thematic monotheism, the other great trait of Late Antique religiosity. It is not so much a paradox as it appears to be. Even before the Christianizing reign of Constantine, who became on his deathbed the first (putatively) Christian Emperor, the Imperial Cult showed signs of constituting itself a type of pagan monotheism, with the one god being emblematized as a solar divinity, Sol Invictus. Personal religion meanwhile began to focus on the ideas of spiritual redemption and establishing a direct, I-Thou relation to the deity. The proliferating “Mystery Cults” and the singular salvation-cult of Christianity give main expression to this religious development during the period.
Augustine of Hippo, otherwise Saint Augustine, born in the North African city of Thagaste, came to maturity in an age of religious innovation amidst the dissolution of many old forms of spirituality and against the background of political and social turmoil in the West. Augustine would die, a victim of plague, during the Vandal siege of Hippo, North Africa, where he was Bishop, in 430. Augustine appears in his self-account, theConfessions, as a wastrel who gradually grew aware of his own degraded status and began to seek the redemption of his soul. He ignored the influence of his Catholic mother, the saintly Monica, and at first, in his early twenties, attached himself as a lay follower to the then dominant form of Gnostic dualism, the synthetic religion known as Manichaeism, after its Iranian founder Mani (216-276).
Manichaeism appealed to Augustine – as Valentinian Gnosis had appealed to intellectuals of the previous century – in part because of its doctrinal complexity. Baroque pseudo-veracity, offering itself as a system to be mastered, exercises attraction of the type on person who wants, as Augustine says of himself, “to be thought elegant and urbane.” Augustine remarks that his reading of Cicero’s Hortensius had awakened in him an interest in philosophical systems. Philosophy, Augustine reminds his readers, means the love of wisdom. Nevertheless many intellectually unformed people, in hoping to be taken for philosophers, mistake doctrine for wisdom. There are gurus (so to speak) who “seduce through philosophy… using it to color and adorn their own errors.” Such were the teachings of Mani to the young and ambitious student of rhetoric and law in Carthage. The Bible, known to Augustine through the influence of Monica, appeared to him at the time, in contrast to philosophical discourse, to be deficient in style, a mere “sort of aid to the growth of little ones.”
Yet oddly the names of Jesus Christ and the Paraclete figured prominently in the treatises of the Manichaeans, who promised to reveal the secret meanings of such figures to initiates. The Manichaeans claimed uniquely to possess “Truth, Truth,” as Augustine writes, “and were forever speaking the word to me.” Even more than did Valentinian Gnosis, Manichaeism borrowed profligately from already-existing systems – from Judaism and Christianity, to be sure, but also from Platonism, Zoroastrianism, Mithraism, Buddhism, the various Mystery religions, and the old Babylonian theology. Mani, like Mohammed a few centuries later, claimed status as final prophet whose visions put all previous revelations in their proper, purely subordinate place. “Glowing fantasies,” “the fantasies of the Manichaeans,” and “tedious fables”: Augustine uses these terms in The Confessions to classify the contents of the “numerous and vast books” that constituted Manichaean scripture.
Plotinus discerned in the Valentinian Gnostics and their writings the traits of an anticosmic attitude as well as of an obsessive antinomianism; he also grasped that Gnosticism was unoriginal, borrowing from established schools while simultaneously denouncing the sources from which it borrowed. Augustine makes similar observations, using a rhetorical structure resembling Plotinus’ parable of the house with two dwellers. Augustine notes that the Manichaeans constantly addressed the Old Testament, not in admiration, but for the sake of condemning the Patriarchs. If a Patriarch had many wives, then the Manichaeans (who abhor procreation) would revile him; if another Patriarch were at first willing to offer human sacrifice, then the Manichaeans would revile him, even though he relented, as God commanded, and afterwards foreswore the practice. For the Manichaeans any goodness save their own is intolerable. Only the revelation of the final prophet can constitute a precedent.
Augustine writes: “It is as if a man in an armory, not knowing what piece goes on what part of the body, should put a grieve on his head and a helmet on his shin and complain because they did not fit. Or again, as if, in a house, he sees a servant handle something that the butler is not permitted to touch, or when something is done behind the stable that would be prohibited in a dining room, and then a person should be indignant that in one house and one family the same things are not allowed to every member of the household.”

IV. Augustine’s plausible representations of the Manichaeans in The Confessions indicate of those sectarians the same hatred of inherited custom and established social hierarchy that Plotinus attributed to his Gnostics, the Valentinians. The devotees of Valentinus regarded the material world as intrinsically and inalterably corrupt. They fervently desired that world’s abolition, after which the pure of heart would be reunited in a kingdom of supernal light known as the Pleroma, or “Fullness.” Augustine would like to see the world improved, but he knows that human behavior is stubborn and that it takes historical ages for a new moral order to take hold. Before he heard differently from God, for example, Abraham would have understood the offering of a child in sacrifice as ordinary religious practice, which it was in the Bronze Age almost everywhere. The Manichaeans, by contrast, exhibit hysteric impatience both with secular recalcitrance and with the crooked timber of humanity. There is one dispensation, theirs, and not holding to it can be charged against an individual even though he had the misfortune to live before the dispensation could be published. The Manichaeans agitated for apocalypse now, the fundamental transformation of a way of life, to coin a phrase.
In addition to describing Manichaean resentment against moral models from the pre-Manichaean past and Manichaean irritation over the refusal of existence to transform itself, immediatement, according to the sectarian program, Augustine also describes the emphatically hierarchical structure of the Manichaean church, with its laity, its lower elite, and its higher elite. Hierarchy is evil when it is someone else’s hierarchy, but good when it is one’s own. To the Manichaean laity, to the auditores among whom Augustine belonged, indeed fell the obligation to support the lower elite and the higher elite of perfecti or “saints.” The practice required the auditores,for example, to feed the lower and higher elites. Now belonging to the Manichaean anticosmic attitude were the tenets that this world is unsalvageable in its wickedness and that all human activity (not only procreation) is evil. Thus Manichaeism condemned the simple act of harvesting wheat or gathering fruit as intolerable violence. Yet the perfecti must eat. How then should they acquire their meals?
As he embraced further the Manichaean view of existence, making their eccentric custom his own, Augustine, as he writes, “was led on to such follies as to believe that a fig tree wept when it was plucked and that the sap of the mother tree was tears.” Augustine continues: “Notwithstanding this, if a fig was plucked, not by his own but by another man’s wickedness, some Manichaean saint might eat it, digest it in his stomach, and breath it out again in the form of angels. Indeed, in his prayers, he would assuredly groan and sigh forth particles of God, although these particles of the most high and true God would have remained bound in that fig unless they had been set free by the teeth and belly of some elect saint.”
Augustine famously argued a point that would become Catholic dogma, namely that evil is not a substance. Augustine formulated this principle in consequence of his sojourn as a Manichaean auditor, for according to Manichaeism matter as such is inherently and inalterably evil. This thesis, that evil is not a substance, stems from the Platonic (also the Biblical) conviction that existence, the creation of a divine Creator, is good. Since matter belongs to creation, matter is likewise good; and the body, material in its basis, is also good. For the Manichaeans, in common with other Gnostics, the material world is the false creation of an inferior usurper-god who sabotaged the perfect immaterial creation of the actual unseen God. When the sabotage occurred, some “particles” of light from the disrupted immaterial world became imprisoned in the false, material world.
Thus during his Manichaean phase Augustine thought of the God-man relation in this way: “I still supposed that thou, O Lord God, the Truth, wert a bright and vast body and that I was a particle of that body.” It was surprisingly through the study physics and astronomy that Augustine came to reject the Manichaean theory of matter: Science explained the character of the physical world better than theosophy did; science also proclaimed a beautiful order in the material realm, which one sensible of beauty could not but admire. On this basis, by a long chain of intermediate syllogisms, Augustine could at last reconcile himself with existence and repudiate the anticosmic attitude: As “whatsoever is, is good,” it follows that “evil, then, the origin of which I had been seeking, has no substance at all; for if it were a substance, it would be good.”
Augustine’s skepticism concerning Manichaean doctrine began to develop halfway through his decade as an auditor. The break with the Manichaeans came when a renowned Manichaean perfect named Faustus made a visit to Carthage. Other auditores promised Augustine that Faustus would be able to put to rest the many questions that he had stored up over the years with respect to doctrine. We recall that Plotinus criticized the Gnostics for their evasiveness in response to specific questions about their creed, refusing to give explanations or definitions. What Augustine says about Faustus gains interest in connection with what Plotinus remarks. At first, Augustine took some pleasure in the eloquence of the speaker: “Yet it was a source of annoyance to me that, in his lecture room, I was not allowed to introduce and raise any of those questions that troubled me, in a familiar exchange of discussion with him.”
Augustine exposes the fraudulence of the lecturer in a charitable way, stating that personally he liked Faustus who “had a heart.” Faustus was not, after all, “ignorant of his own ignorance.” Faustus “modestly did not dare to undertake the task,” of answering Augustine’s questions, “for he was aware that he had no knowledge of these things and was not ashamed to confess it.” Augustine writes, “The zeal with which I had plunged into the Manichaean system was checked.”
The accounts of Gnosticism – in its Valentinian and Manichaean varieties – as given more than a century apart by Plotinus and Augustine show numerous similarities and are generally convergent. In both accounts, the Gnostics appear as radically alienated from existence, a mood or tone that expresses itself in anticosmic dogmas and revilement of norms. Both accounts represent the Gnostics as constituting an aggressive cultic in-group that defines itself through relentless denunciation of received custom and traditional belief. Both accounts mention the reluctance of the convicted to allow questions, even while the same illuminati demand that adherents of settled custom and traditional belief justify their positions. Both representations also call attention to the attitude of haughty superiority of the illuminati with respect to the out-group. In a subsequent essay I will examine the extent to which the Gnostic documents, themselves, confirm these characterizations.



Me and the GOP

Racially aware European Americans generally hold one of three positions regarding partisan politics:
Some see the Republican Party as an implicitly White party that could be accessed and guided toward positions explicitly favoring European Americans. Persons holding this position point to David Duke who ran and won as a Republican in Louisiana, and Derek Black who was recently elected to a party post in Florida.
Others see the Republican Party as hopelessly corrupted by neo-conservatism that toxic mix of globalism and Judeo-Christianity. Any partisan political activity is best directed toward building a third party. They point to the American Third Position, a new party that has enlisted support from several men known for their intelligence and integrity, as a likely vehicle.
Finally, many White advocates believe that at present partisan politics is a waste of limited time and resources. There is not yet the critical mass of support, especially publicly committed support, to make running for office practical. Some who hold this position are so alienated that they refuse to spend even a few minutes biennially to vote for the lesser of evils claiming that not voting is a form of protest.
There is evidence and arguments to support all three of the above positions. To further a discussion on this topic I will recount my recent experiences with the North Dakota Republican Party (GOP).
My first direct contact with the ND Republican Party came in February, 2008. Every four years our state holds party caucuses to select convention delegates pledged to presidential candidates. While I am neither a libertarian nor an enthusiastic supporter of Ron Paul I thought he was the best of a disappointing lot of presidential hopefuls. So I braved below-zero temperatures and icy roads to meet with other Republicans, listen to speeches, and cast a vote for a presidential contender. Rep. Paul did relatively well. He cane in third, and actually won some delegates. Sen. McCain came in fourth in our state caucuses.
To vote in a caucus one needed to supply complete contact information. As a result for the next two years I received a light but steady stream of emails from the state GOP announcing upcoming events and soliciting contributions. Only once did I respond to these missives, that a pithy reply to a particularly muddled editorial in support of neo-conservatism written by the party chairman.
Despite my somewhat frosty feedback to the party in early March I received a notice that my district still had openings for delegates to the state convention. I thought it might be interesting to meet the candidates and see how a political organization operates on the state level. So I applied and was accepted as a delegate.
My agenda for the convention was to speak with the five principle candidates (two for US Senate and three for US House), ascertain their positions on three important issues (immigration, Middle East, and fiscal/monetary policy), and inform them of my own views on these subjects. I managed to speak to four of the five candidates at some length on the above issues.
All the candidates were pleasant, even friendly, but often vague on policy specifics, just what you might expect from politicians looking for delegate votes. If one was seeking a spirited policy discussion he would not get one from these candidates. In fact debate or even discussion of policy issues was a rare occurrence during the convention. One might think that with 1200 political activists in one venue there would be plenty of such conversations. On the other hand if you think back to Poli. Sci. 101 you might remember that American politics is often more about personality than policy and more about image than ideas.
The impressions I did receive on policy positions from the candidates and other delegates were not reassuring. It appeared that at the time (late March 2010) that the GOP was on board with amnesty for illegal aliens. Since then neo-con leaders such as Senators McCain and Graham have found it prudent to put so called comprehensive immigration reform on the back burner. In the future, however, these dogs will not hesitant to betray their European American constituents for political expedience.
Prospects appear even less favorable for a more evenhanded GOP policy towards the Middle East. I found little support for Ron Paul’s less interventionist foreign policy. In fact I heard criticism of the Obama administration for not being sufficiently pro-Israeli (Vice President Biden had recently returned from a rocky road in the Levant). It seemed that the more “Christian” a candidate or delegate was the more likely they were to be a Judeo-Christian Zionist. Honesty, with their talk of a wider war in the Middle East I find these Christian Zionists to be the scariest people on the political spectrum.
As for a sounder fiscal and monetary policy, another issue raised by Rep. Paul during the 2008 campaign, the GOP leadership is quick to give lip service to cutting spending but very hesitant to advocate more fundamental reforms such as regular auditing of the Federal Reserve. I asked Rick Berg, the Republican candidate for our at-large US House seat, specifically about Rep. Paul. I noted the enthusiastic support Dr. Paul has received especially from younger Republicans (Paul had recently won the presidential straw poll at the CPAC conference in Washington). Berg conceded that Ron Paul energizes a core Republican constituency and is an impressive fund raiser, but I could sense the profound reluctance of the GOP establishment candidate to go off script and think outside the box. Whatever his strengthens and weaknesses, and he has both, Rep. Paul is a true maverick. Sen. McCain, the self proclaimed maverick, is more the grumpy opportunist.
During the past year I attended a couple of local Tea Party (TP) events, and I recognized several persons from those events at the convention. I asked them about the Tea Party’s relationship to the GOP. While this is obviously a small sampling it appears the TP is now firmly wedded to the Republican Party. Back in 2009 it seemed possible that the TP would be a radical movement independent of the Republicans, but this has not happened, at least not yet. Although they are having a significant influence on the GOP I predict many Tea Partiers are going to be disappointed with the results of their efforts. It is just too easy for the Republican leadership to give their issues only token support. The elite consensus, supported by both parties, is based on international casino capitalism, big government, and military interventionism all of which preclude serious fiscal and monetary reform. The system will have to go bankrupt before it will change.
So getting back to my original topic: What have I glean from my admittedly brief experience with the GOP? First the Republican organization is permeable, though there are, of course, limits to its inclusion. An activist who chooses the GOP as his medium would need to be politic and use some finesse while still being uncompromising on key issues such as immigration and an America-first foreign policy.
As always the unaffiliated individual is relatively powerless. The best way to get your issues heard is to run your own candidates at conventions and in primaries. This requires one individual to be the point man, a lighting rod. If no individual is available an alternative strategy is to form a group of party activists who would vote as a block at conventions and/or primaries. It would be best to link positions to Republican figures past or present. Such an intra party organization might be called the Buchanan Brigade, Paleo-conservative Caucus, or the Republican Rough Riders.
Up till now I have not mentioned money. It has been pointed out many times that money is the mothers’ milk of politics, the fuel that runs political activism. One needs to open his wallet a bit just to get a seat at the table. That said; remember our cause is starved for funds. I hope no European American would lessen his financial support of an explicitly White organization to support the GOP.
The strategy of infiltrating the Republican Party is not a magic formula for success. As Derek Black is finding out the dominate forces within the party will strongly resist any move toward an explicit White agenda. It will take a stout and sustained effort to have the desired influence on policy. Is the effort worth it? Would resources be better used pursuing another course? The US has had a two-party system almost from the beginning. The last major new party is over 150 years old. These facts show continuity. Yet the parties themselves have changed tremendously over time. One hundred years ago the Democrats’ core constituencies were Southern segregationists and Northern White working men. Many will argue that European Americans will never be able to vote themselves out of the present mess. I agree, but it is difficult to image a realistic scenario for our instauration in which partisan politics does not play at least some role.
Our “movement” is criticized for being long on complains and preaching to the choir, and short on activism. In many regions of this huge country comrades are few and far between. In areas where the Republican Party is the only organization on the right it could be a vehicle for raising issues and networking. This strategy would be a good fit for persons who have excellent interpersonal skills, need to remain within the mainstream, and live in conservative states or districts without other avenues for activism. And remember, this approach does not exclude pursuing other tactics as well.


Asylum Reform

To qualify as an asylee, a person must meet the following definition from Section 101(a)(42) of the Immigration and Nationality Act:
“any person who... is unable or unwilling to return to, and is unable or unwilling to avail himself or herself of the protection of that country because of persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion....”
The distinction between a refugee and an asylee is that refugees apply for entry to the U.S. from abroad, and asylees are already in the U.S., legally or illegally, when the application is made.
The asylum application backlog was estimated at 324,438 at the end of FY01. 80 percent of the backlog of asylum applications is from just two countries, El Salvador and Guatemala. The top five source countries for applications in the asylum backlog comprise 90 percent of the backlog, as follows.
1. El Salvador162,00050%
2. Guatemala96,00030%
3. Haiti17,0005%
4. Nicaragua13,0004%
5. China4,0001%
Immigration and Naturalization Service, Asylum Reform: 5 Years Later, Feb. 2000.
“In 1991, the first professional asylum corps was formed as part of a final rule to implement the 1980 Refugee Act. While the final rule created a fair process in which professional asylum officers were trained to elicit refugees’ claims in a non-adversarial setting, the program quickly became subject to abuse. A lack of resources, combined with a lengthy process and easy availability of employment authorization to almost all asylum applicants, made the program vulnerable to fraudulent applications and many genuine refugees’ applications languished in an ever-increasing backlog.”
Although asylum applicants are judged by the same definition as refugees, in practice there are significant differences due to the fact the applicants are already in the United States and have the advantage of access to counsel and the U.S. courts if the INS does not accept their request for asylum status. In practice, a majority of the asylum applications each year are “defensive” applications filed by deportable aliens attempting to use asylum as a means to avoid deportation.
In addition, decisions by U.S. judges have stretched asylum to accommodate new classes of aliens never contemplated by the legislation’s authors. For example, in March 2000, a federal court held that a Filipino “whistleblower” who stayed in the United States illegally qualified for asylum because he could face persecution if returned to his country. Other new asylum claimants are people suffering from spousal abuse and social customs such as genital circumcision, gays and lesbians, and even people who have simply become “too Americanized” to be sent home. In the 106th Congress, a bill was introduced to extend asylum status to victims of human trafficking.

Soaring Numbers

asylum application chart
When Congress passed a law in 1980 allowing people to claim political asylum, federal officials predicted the United States would receive a maximum of 5,000 applicants annually. Instead, applications have soared as high as 150,000 a year, with many claims frivolous and fraudulent. Asylum has become a “back door” for circumventing the regular immigration process. Its abuse is unfair to the people trying to immigrate legally to the United States and to those who truly merit asylum.
Asylum is the riskiest of all the benefits given under the immigration laws. We are taking at face value the claims of aliens about whom we know nothing. Because of the nature of asylum claims, the claimant’s true background and history are difficult to verify, and it is nearly impossible to determine whether a claimant is bona fide or is a threat to the well being and safety of our society.
Because all applications for asylum by people currently in the U.S., no matter how frivolous, must be adjudicated, some illegal aliens use asylum claims to avoid deportation. Since there are sometimes too many asylum applicants to detain, they can be released to await a hearing on their claim. Having obtained their freedom, these asylum applicants often fail to show up for their hearings and simply disappear into society.
grants of asylum chart

Asylum Reform

The federal government’s attempts to improve the asylum system are confined mostly to speeding up the rate at which applications are processed. Still, the withholding of work permits from asylum applicants accomplished by the asylum reforms of 1995 has helped to bring the number of applicants down dramatically.
But, as the INS sped up the decision-making process and asylum applications became less viable as a means to buy time, immigration attorneys have tried to widen the definition of asylum to make more and more people eligible. Continued efforts by immigration lawyers have expanded the definition of asylum far beyond its original meaning of individualized persecution by one’s government. Now, aliens are granted asylum simply for showing that their beliefs and practices are not in perfect agreement with those of their society and culture.
We need not just a faster asylum system, but a better one. In order to curb asylum abuse, the following changes must be made.
  • Asylum applications should have to be filed within 45 days of entering the United States.
  • Asylum applicants without travel documents should be excluded from entering the country.
  • Denials of asylum by trained asylum officers should not be appealable, except for review of procedural errors.
  • Asylum applicants who arrive at the U.S. via another safe country should not be admitted.
  • The claims of applicants from countries that do not practice individual political persecution should be automatically rejected.
  • Illegal aliens in the deportation process should not be allowed to file asylum claims.
  • Aliens who file frivolous asylum claims should become ineligible for any immigration status.
  • “Cultural” asylum and other expanded definitions of asylum must be ended, and the original meaning of asylum restored.
    Updated 10/2