What are we all doing here? By 'here', I mean the internet, by 'we', I mean the sort of person who very kindly reads this blog of mine regularly and/or writes similar stuff in blogs or Twitter or whatever.
My original goal was to understand what is leftism, why leftist people exist and why our societies are decaying by enabling leftism to dominate all the levers of power. After years of writing, years of reading, and years of talking with like-minded gentlemen over the internet, I think I've succeeded at that task. You can read some examples of it in the sidebar as "best posts".
I've also been meeting some readers in person over the last few years, and they all agree that the "analysis phase" of this little movement we've come to call neoreaction is done. Moldbug started the whole thing, asked the right questions, showed how everything we thought we knew was wrong, then he left to build interesting stuff. Nick Land asked another set of right questions, found out nobody dared answer them, and then he left to write horror fiction. I here have done my little part on finishing what I considered was most important: an analysis of the history and the psychology of leftism.
Well, that's done, we know leftists are sociopathic status maximizers who seek groups of people who, for contingent or increasingly genetic reasons, have low status, and thus a great incentive to disturb the political process and create chaos in society. They have much to gain, little to lose, and thus are ideal employees with an incentive to keep loyal. Ok we know that one. Now what? What do we do? We should do something.
Well, I'm not the first one to be asked that. Moldbug was asked that. What did he say? Become worthy. Funnily it seems he took that from the Chinese concept of the "Mandate of Heaven", i.e. the post-hoc rationalization of successful rebels after they took the throne by force. The idea is that if I was able to take over the throne by force, by definition the previous monarch didn't have the favor of Heaven (i.e. we'd say God), and the fact that I took it means Heaven likes me somehow, so it's alright if I rule now. QED.
So was Moldbug advocating for armed rebellion à la Zhū Yuánzhāng? Not quite. Well, nobody knows. I don't think he himself knew (he's welcome to comment here to clarify now that he's retired. We miss you M). And let's face it, nobody knows what to do. The Bioleninist left rules the United States, which rules the Western world, and they're hellbent in destroying any slight hint of opposition. They're winning, and all we can do is root, anonymously, for enemy countries such as Syria, Russia or China in the vague hope that at least some balance in international affairs will stop, or even just stall the Cathedral from destroying the native cultures of Europe and North America for good.
Now even crypto-homo influencers like Paul Joseph Watson or thousand-cock-stare wacko Jewish broads like Laura Loomer are blacklisted from all social media. Other, more consistent right-wingers who were vain enough to go public with their real names are being physically banned from many countries or being denied the ability to open bank accounts (!). Meanwhile President of the United States, Donald J. Trump, does nothing but screech on Twitter about how Surprised he is, and that he's Monitoring the Situation. Thanks Don.
So yeah, Moldbug had a point. Do nothing, until you're ready to go all in. We're not ready to go all-in, not even close to that point. So just do your thing, take care of your family, have a bunch of kids, and make sure they're not groomed into the Bioleninist sewers. And make money. A lot of money.
That said, there's one thing I wanna do, which is to continue blogging. One thing that I miss reading around is policy ideas. Yes, the Left is still moving further Left, we have less power than we ever have, it is absolutely impossible that any idea that we may have would ever be implemented in our present political structure. Our ideas tend to be, as an elder of neoreaction put it, coup-complete problems, problems which are completely untractable in our modern political structures and would require Fnargl to materialize in this world to be implemented. Be that as it may, it is still important to put some ideas out there, if just in order to exercise our brains and refresh our eyes seeing how a more intelligent way of governing would work. And who knows, maybe Xi Jinping or Putin senpai actually notices me some day.
So I was thinking of taxes. That modern Western tax codes are a big, a huge pile of ultra-condensed evil is beyond question. They're outrageously long, convoluted, designed so that normal people are scammed routinely every year, and rich people get undue advantages thanks to the aid of an army of tax accountants and their nefarious tactics. The very existence of an occupation such as "tax accountants" is of course an artificial result of how complicated the tax code is, and that very complexity is very likely done on purpose in order to ensure that evil guild of tax accountants still have a job. I, with Andrew Yang, am an ardent supporter of automation, and thus I can't wait to the day where the tax code is simplified, automated, and all those tax lawyer bugmen are out of a job, and have to do something actually useful for a living. Or they can also just live off UBI, because UBI is Great and Merciful, and protects even poor boring bugmen such as them.
Speaking of Andrew Yang, peace be on his name, I should have elaborated a bit more on my enthusiasm for UBI and other ideas of his when I wrote about him a few weeks ago. It is a fact that in pure economic terms, human labor is just not worth as much as it used to be up to the 1970s. Real wages have dropped all over the developed world, and the income share of labor has plummeted. Whether that is due to automation, or to competition from China, or due to women entering the labor force, that can be debated, but it doesn't really matter. Labor is losing out, that is a fact. A sad fact. But whatever Tucker Carlson and his fellow nostalgics say, you can't just go full Luddite. You might do that, but Napoleon won't, and eventually Napoleon always conquers beautiful Venice. So I say we try to think how one could use the current economic circumstances to promote a better way of governing the economy.
Well, if labor is losing value across the economy, the least modern governments could do, is to stop taxing labor. Not only are income taxes the main source of tax revenue in all of the developed world, payroll taxes are also a crushing burden, and an increasing one due to low birthrates. Well, stop that crap. No payroll taxes. Stop all that crap of deducting social security and healthcare from wages, with some part masked as "employer burden", which only makes the paperwork of hiring people all the more burdensome. Make all old-age pensions and healthcare costs go to the general budget, and streamline the hiring and firing process to make it transparent how much money every employee actually makes and how much he costs his employer.
Speaking of income tax, punishing people for making money really isn't the best way of incentivizing work, is it. And don't get me started with tax filing and all that paperwork. It's medieval. Now, you may say that the government has to take money from somewhere, and today people earn their income in form of cash, so that's what you tax. And sure, that was the case when the whole thing started about 100 years ago. But look at today. Most countries haven't balanced their budgets in decades. Japan is a famous example, with about half of public expenditures being financed with public debt. The US federal debt issuance is also out of the charts. And yet there is no inflation.
Why not? Because governments today are more advanced than they were in the 1930s. They can now not only print money, but target it into where they want it to go. Governments today print money, and make sure that the excess money supply goes to the stock market or real estate to prop up asset prices and make rich people richer, and thus happier. Modern Monetary Theory is on the news lately, and that reflects the growing consensus among economists that governments don't need to collect taxes to finance themselves. They can just print money and use their coercive powers to make sure it flows where they want it to.
Why collect taxes then? Not to collect money. But just as yet another mechanism to control the economy and the population. Tax collection is a way of removing money from the particular places or people where you want it removed. You could, today, theoretically just not collect taxes at all and just run the government by printing money. But why would you relinquish the power to tax people at will? Besides, tax revenue is a useful economic indicator.
If we're lucky, the likes of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortés and her brown dancing milkers will serve to bring to the public the idea that taxing is about power, and not about the economy. And if it is so, taxing becomes a matter of government discretion. After decades of somewhat disingenuous "technocratic" government, modern politicians are increasingly moralizing their agendas and running government in order to advance their ideas of morality. I approve of that mindset. Confucius would be proud. It indeed follows the same principles; Confucianism and its reboot as Neoconfucianism represented the victory of the bureaucrat civilians (one might call them the priestly class) over the military establishment. That's a process that we are seeing in the West only recently, but powered further by women joining in the process, and women of course can only be priests, never warriors. So moralizing it is. I say we join in, at least tentatively.
So what would a reactionary tax policy look like? Let me propose a few ideas. First, as I mentioned above, don't tax labor. You want people to work. Use tax policy to discourage the worst parts of human nature, not the best ones. What I called before "social failures" in lieu of the "market failures" the economists talk about. Could just as well call them "psychological failures". Just the parts of human behavior that evolution hasn't had the time to fix after the Neolithic Revolution, and especially the problems which have arisen in modernity due to motorized transport and electronic communications.
You shouldn't tax labor but you could very well tax corporate power. A lot of people seek promotions and positions in corporate management not because of the money, but because they're sadists who get a kick out of lording people around. Others stumble upon positions of management against their actual disposition due to common problems such as the Peter Principle. You could modulate that with a Management Tax. You want to brag about being an executive? Then pay. I'm sure most people would pay gladly. At the very least a tax on corporate board seats could change the presently pervasive revolving door of "retired" politicians given discrete payment for previously rendered services. Might as well call it the Committee Tax. Only the owner doesn't pay.
Given that our future government (and all future governments) is going to be a Moral Government, it is imperative that we bring our modern knowledge of the failures of human nature into our new governance structure. Since the dawn of humanity, people have known that humans have such a thing as vices. Christians frame it as the seven "cardinal sins", pride, greed, lust, envy, gluttony, wrath and sloth. That's not bad, but individual differences are quite huge here, and it's hard to set a standard definition of where the line is between a glutton and some guy who likes to eat. And things like pride or envy are a mental state, not a behavior, so it can hardly be dealt with.
A more scientific way of putting this is to address the problem of addiction. I said before that neoreaction is reaction with better knowledge of history and some modern cognitive science. We know now that there are some substances or behaviors which for some reason or another hack our brain chemistry and make them hard to stop. A good example is the classic male vices: gambling, whoring and drinking (i.e. drugs more generally). Men do these things, some more, some less, I guess over a Gaussian distribution. But we do it, and will always do. It feels good. Some puritanical cultures (mostly Abrahamic) have banned some or all of these behaviors, driving them underground, but hardly extinguishing them. Other more enterprising cultures (e.g. the Chinese) historically decided to run them as public enterprises and tax them heavily. Men are gonna whore and gamble anyway, might as well regulate it and make them fill the public coffers with it. Alcohol and tobacco are taxed heavily today for exactly the same reason, and everybody understands it's a good thing. Do the same for cannabis now that it's being legalized. Although I'm a fan of Andrew Yang and others' idea of granting a monopoly of pot trading to black people; might as well fund their welfare that way. Fellow fans of Brave New World may also get the hint.
To that we might also add videogames today. Videogames are a huge deal, millions upon millions of people spend untold thousands of hours on them. Videogames are by now the most important entertainment industry. It's time the state give it the status it deserves. How? By taxing the hell out of them. You wanna waste your youth on Fortnite? Your call. But it can't be free. It stands to reason that online subscription services like Xbox Live are taxed at a 100-200% rate. Note also that internet gaming in China requires logging in with one's real ID card so that minors are legally restricted from playing up to a certain age, and have time limits for teenagers. I think it's a great idea. No SWATing in China either.
History has given plenty of attention to male vices, but it is only fair that we also put some spotlight to female vices, of which there is also no shortage. Women's vices perhaps have never been addressed because women didn't have financial independence until 60 years ago, but now they do, so let us make them pay. Women have their own vices of superstition (e.g. astrology and divination), attention-whoring (e.g. constant revealing selfies on social media), and celebrity-chasing (we've all seen teenage girls going literally insane over some midget singer with makeup). I saw we tax the shit out of all those industries; and preferably nationalize them and run them effectively as a government department. Again China is innovating here, with their tight censorship of social media and recently enforced ideological control over celebrities.
To this, add a universal consumption tax, which is easy to enforce, especially now with the coming cashless society, and which you can tweak to charge higher for pointless luxury goods. Tax the stuff the rich like at, say, 50%. Tax cooked food, but not raw ingredients. But do charge salads. Fuck those. Americans really need to get over their hatred of value-added taxes. Surely they beat being taxed for making money? Don't you want all those unproductive net tax-receivers to pay something?
I'm also a big fan of wealth caps. Roosh, who's getting interesting as he transforms into a Sufi monk after his T levels started crashing down at age 40, recently put it very well, while proposing a wealth cap of $100 million:
"Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, George Soros, and many other billionaires will all go back to being one-hundred millionaires as long as the bulk of their business and social activity takes place in the United States. That leaves them plenty enough money for penthouses, yachts, and high-class whores, but not enough to subvert society with a globohomo agenda."
Of course a wealth cap would be tricky to enforce; none of these men have all their billions in cash; they just happen to own trillion dollar companies, and it wouldn't make sense to punish a person as his company gains in value. Now of course we can all argue about how modern states have engaged in artificial asset inflation in the stock market, about how valuable these companies really are. But surely some companies out there really are valuable and efficient, and taking stock from their founders because they've reached a wealth cap doesn't sound like a good idea. Any commenters with good ideas are welcome to share them here.
On a different note; for all the panic about global warming, which we all know is an evil plot by government and associated entities to have an eternal excuse to control more of the economy and have an excuse to request bigger budgets; isn't the modern logistics industry to blame for some of that? We talk of globalization as this amazing human feat. Which it is; but isn't it wasteful that every little piece of machinery requires world-length supply chains, moving a myriad little components from a dozen countries until its final assembly? Actually there's a good way of fixing that problem. Tariffs. The WTO was set up with the ultimate goal of having zero tariffs across the world. Make that a 10% universal tariff. Try to encourage supply chains to be country-sized, or at least trade-block sized. That would get some much needed revenue for UBI too.
In my last post on Debt, I argued that the world's financial system is obviously in the verge of collapse due to the egregious amount of debt being issued in all countries in the past 10 years. Something's gotta give, and it's increasingly obvious that the financial system we have is absurd, with its automated algorithmic trading depending on milisecond speed advantages by bribing NYT officials to put their servers 10 feet closer to the NYSE, cultish scams like Herbalife, or the constant IPOs by unprofitable Silicon Valley gypsy-economy e-gig companies, which are basically just doing regulatory arbitrage by virtue of being Woke. Of course stock exchanges are a big part of the great story of the success of capitalism, but a few well placed taxes and restrictions should be put to rein in that huge, evil mess.
A big problem, well, the biggest problem of modern societies is the IQ-shredding problem. Intelligent people have the fewer children, and the decline in human capital we've been having for the past 150 years is bad enough. There's been lots of talk all over the world about how to encourage birth rates through tax policy. While many argue for sheer cash payments per child (a Japanese TV show was just advocating for $100k per child, no questions asked), it shows that governments are actually HBD-aware at some level and do not want the sheer increase in trashy population that immediate cash payments would ensure. The people who you want having the children are those who *don't* need the money. I still think a child-less tax is a good idea. No kids after 25, you get taxed. Less than 2 kids after 30, you get taxed. Less than 3 kids after 35, you-get-taxed. I'd say a TFR of 2.5-3 should be the aim of public policy, no more, no less. Child-less taxes shouldn't be crushing, just annoying. You want to nudge people, but the freaks who just hate family life should be allowed to weed themselves out of the gene pool.
We know what we don't like about modern society. We (now, finally) know why we got here and how it happened. But what do we stand for? What do we want? Let's think about that. We have nothing better to do anyway.