This is how civilizations die:
It’s like the West is some kind of Oedipus figure, one that blinded itself once it became aware of its own complicity in the abuse of others. The rest of the world does not operate like this. The death wish of the West, identified by Jean Raspail in his otherwise repulsive novel “The Camp of the Saints,” is overwhelmingly powerful. We are desperate to be delivered from ourselves, to be released into the servitude of reclaimed innocence.
Do you want to know what kind of future we are creating for ourselves? Look at the water system of Jackson, Mississippi, which has collapsed. I can’t say what the fault is, other than the people of that city and state did not look after the infrastructure. The media’s go-to answer is RACISM, and there might be some of that at play, as Jackson is 82 percent black. But it might also be a case of bad government by elected black leadership. There’s nothing that says both factors aren’t involved, or some factor that I can’t imagine. The point, though, is that the ability of the poor people of Jackson, of all races, to get safe drinking water is going to depend on people who know how to do math. The woke are turning us into a country that knows how to sit around talking about the power dynamics of mathematics, but that doesn’t know how to turn the water back on.
A reader of this blog emailed the other day to say that he had left the US military, despite his advanced rank, because he could no longer stand to watch US military readiness suffer because politicians want to use the armed forces to carry out their social experiments. This too is how a civilization falls: we start to believe the purpose of the military is to advance Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, or to Spread Democracy, instead of to win wars in defense of the homeland.
A friend in Poland messaged me this morning with gloomy news. He said there’s a general sense that war is coming, that things are going to get much worse before long. It’s hard for me to imagine Russia invading a NATO country, but it’s unfortunately not hard for me to imagine the US and its EU lackeys distracting from widespread domestic unrest (over the fact that everybody is cold and poor, thanks to bad leadership) by launching a real war (as distinct from this proxy war) against Russia in Ukraine.
Similarly, I heard from a friend in Romania that there is a strong and developing sense of crisis among the Romanian people, related to the energy situation there. He said that the people are starting to wonder what kind of disaster their leaders, and EU leaders, have gotten them all into: the immiseration of their own country for the sake of Volodymyr Zelensky’s Ukraine. You saw, I guess, news of the mass energy crisis demonstration in Prague the other day. The roving Internet correspondent Michael Yon calls what is emerging a “Global 1848,” referring to the infamous year of mass uprisings and revolts in Europe.
A Hungarian friend said to me last week that she couldn’t understand why I was planning to move to Budapest now. “It’s like moving to Poland in August 1939,” she said. She might have a point, but I’m still going. Yet I just ordered enough potassium iodide tablets for myself and her family, in case the Russians bomb that nuke plant in Ukraine.
I’m going to write more about this in a separate post, but I think the outrageous scandal of US hospitals — in conjunction with the administration in Washington, and in collaboration with the water-carrying US media — operating a regime under which thousands of children are sexually mutilated in conformity with this insane ideology that has conquered our institutions … I think this cannot be separated at all from the phenomenon of Woke Mathematics. It’s all a part of the abdication of leadership by a corrupt elite that wants to impose ideology as a guide to reality. They will amputate children’s breasts and genitalia, and amputate their minds and the ability to reason — and for what? Who benefits? Besides China, I mean.
Last point: here is news from one of the great annual pageants of the Western cultural elite, the Venice Film Festival:
Timothee Chalamet had all of Venice seeing red on Friday night at the world premiere of “Bones and All.” The actor donned a sparkling backless jumpsuit in a blood-red shade — a cheeky wink to the drama’s central protagonists, two cannibals in love.
The film, which reunites Chalamet with his “Call Me By Your Name” director Luca Guadagnino, lives up to its title with gory attacks and scenes that involve limb-chewing and eating. But despite the uncomfortable subject matter, the audience at the Venice premiere for the movie devoured “Bones and All.” The film received a 8.5-minute standing ovation, the longest and most enthusiastic of the festival so far.
… Chalamet plays Lee, a pale young man who embarks on a road trip with a woman he meets who shares an equally troubled past. The odyssey is marked with self-exploration and murder (with a tone that suggests what you’d get if Guadagnino had been tapped to direct one of the “Twilight” films). In one scene set at a carnival, Lee seduces a man, suggesting that he’s bisexual (or maybe pansexual), but he eventually falls in love with Maren.
This is what the most culturally sophisticated aesthetes in Europe now cheer. What do we stand for as a civilization now? Anything? I believe we have to fight, because we can’t surrender to this stuff, but I have to say that I fear our own elites, and their predation on the demoralized masses, more than I fear the Russians or the Chinese. And I hear Mick Jagger singing over Keith Richards’s brambly guitar:
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UPDATE: Joe Biden is now asking for almost $14 billion more for Ukraine. Meanwhile, how’s it going for your family budget?