This might just be a shiv but maybe it's a nuke. Do with it what you will.
I wrote this after drinking coffee way too late in the day and pouring Canadian Club in it, which in the trade we call ‘a chemistry experiment’. It has not been edited, which is also part of the experiment. Caveat emptor and cetera.
The last decade or so has seen an amorphous cultural revolution sweep the Anglosphere. Different labels have been applied to try and pin down the nature of this novel egregore. SJW has largely fallen out of use, probably because it’s unwieldy, and probably because describing the low-t manlings and the termagants that dominate them as ‘warriors’ was just too galling, even if the appellation was applied ironically. The current word of choice is ‘Woke’, which is also applied ironically since, as everyone knows, the very last thing these Current Thing enjoyers are is awake.
Both of those terms originated from within the egregore itself, as labels applied to its drones. The labels were then appropriated by dissidents, at which point the egregore started distancing itself from them ... but this doesn’t strike me as because the labels cause it any particular pain. After all, those labels emerged from within the egregore itself. Once they’d been repurposed as slurs they didn’t really work anymore as self-identifiers, but that didn’t make their use hateful. If you doubt this, ask yourself: have you ever seen the woke get angry for being called woke? My experience is that they role their eyes a bit and ask what ‘woke’ (with scare-quotes carefully inflected) is supposed to mean, anyhow.
So, there are other labels that have been tried. The boomer right came up with ‘snowflake’ and ‘crybully’. These are a bit better, in my opinion, since they originated within the opposition as slurs, rather than being appropriated self-descriptors from the left, although not by much. ‘Snowflake’, riffing off of Tyler Durden’s line that “You are not special. You are not a beautiful and unique snowflake,” drew attention to the pathological desire of the egregore’s adherents to mark themselves out as delicate and, well, special, as evidenced by their infinitely creative taxonomy of neopronouns. Still, snowflakes are, well, kinda pretty, and honestly when that insufferable fairy George Takei did his little tweet about how a whole bunch of snowflakes make an avalanche, well that kinda nullified whatever sting was really in that term to begin with. ‘Crybully’ emphasized their passive-aggressive tactics of imposing their will on others by claiming phantom oppression, “Your speech is violence!” and such, which is good. But still, that’s just drawing attention to their tactics, and it says nothing about their nature.
‘Bioleninist’ is a perennial favourite among the galaxy-brain neoreactionary set, and I’m actually not gonna shit on it, because it’s a solid concept and the original essay by Spandrell is a classic for a reason. If you haven’t come across the term before, the basic idea is that Leninism elevated underclass peasants to high stations in society, and since the plebs would never have enjoyed this status without the support of the Party, it has their eternal loyalty, which in turn gives Leninism its internal stability. Bioleninism simply extends this to the natural, biological hierarchy, elevating the genetic undermen whose low intelligence and lack of innate talent would never have enabled them to rise above their intrinsic betters without the support of the bioleninist framework. Just as with Leninism, Bioleninism thereby gains a huge advantage in rock-solid internal stability thanks to the permanent loyalty of its client groups, with the price it pays in the competence of the minion class a trade-off that’s proved to be worth it, so far. Still, while bioleninist is a very useful concept, as a sick own it is sorely lacking – only theorycels schooled in the arcane knowledge of human biodiversity and Russian history will understand the word’s implications upon first hearing it, and that is not most people.
About the only term that I’ve seen really get under the skin of the death cultists is NPC. Calling them Non-Player-Characters drove them absolutely nuts for a while, resulting in mass bannings on Twitter by enraged dangerhairs as the Blue Cheka1 screamed about muh dehumanization. NPC zeroed in on the fact that the worldview of the egregore’s human elements is essentially just ‘whatever the egregore installed in the latest update’, which is just obviously true whether we’re talking about the acceptable vs unacceptable lexicon, or whatever issue we’re all supposed to care about at the moment and which position we’re supposed to take if we want to be considered Good People. It is extremely fucking important to the egregorians that they be perceived as smart, morally upstanding, socially conscious people, and directing attention to the gaping void where a functioning independent intellect or moral centre should be struck a very sensitive nerve.
NPC was good, but it’s a bit played out. Partly that’s just through use, but partly it’s because it was, in a sense, content-free. It drew attention to the absence of fully operational human minds in the zombie horde, but it said very little about what was there in its place. It’s also, if we’re perfectly honest, not completely true, because after all these are, much as we hate to admit it, human beings that we’re talking about, with motivations and personality traits and all the rest. They aren’t actually empty vessels. They just act that way. And even insofar as they are empty, something is filling that emptiness; if it wasn’t, they wouldn’t be able to do anything but just sort of sit there staring at a wall.
A rhetorical weapon should hurt. A really good rhetorical weapon should hurt so much that the enemy runs away screaming in panic and terror, possessed by Phobos and Deimos2 so that Ares can jam his doru in their weak and cowardly spines.
A rhetorical weapon hurts the most if it’s true, and especially if it jams its thumb into a sensitive spot of truth that the enemy would rather not think about, and would especially rather that no one else think about. Something they can’t actually deny, because it’s obvious to everyone that it’s true.
I’ve been looking for an Atomic Word with which to nuke this hateful egregore from orbit for years now. Something that named it. It is an established principle of magick that when you possess the True Name of a dark spirit, you own the fucker. You have it by its ectoplasmic testicles. If you can speak its True Name, it is utterly in your power, and must obey you no matter how much it wishes it can’t. Sorcerers use this for their own personal power; shamans to commune; me, I just want to exorcise this demon, so that we can sweep it out of our path and get on with our destiny on the high frontier of the stars.
A few days ago, in the comments to's Luxury Maoism, it came to me.
Bray was describing the upside-down world feeling of watching rich actors of high melanin content complaining that they had been the subject of racist oppression because, despite having attended all the right galas and thousand-dollar-a-plate charity dinners and starring in movies backed by multi-billion-dollar market cap studios, they got passed over for an Oscar in favour of a movie made on a shoestring budget starring actors of high neanderthal ancestry. The rich and pampered are oppressed, because black; the poor and hardscrabble are oppressors, because white. We’ve all seen it before.
The top comment on that post was written by top commenter Clever Pseudonym, who referred to our Red Guard Lite as ‘Marxist-Narcissists’.
And there it is.
That’s the Nuclear Word.
It encapsulates the toxic core of these hollow strivers perfectly.
That they’re Marxists of some description is simply obviously true. The Boomer Right knows this instinctively, referring to them out of hand as commies. Clever boys like James Lindsay have done the work charting the development of this ideology from Hegel, through Marx and Engels, to Marcuse, Lacan, Freire, and ultimately the contemporary mental midgets DiAngelo and Kendi3. This is why terms like ‘cultural Marxist’ have such staying power, although it doesn’t quite work as a burn so much as an ideological description, and anyhow most of the targets have never heard of the Frankfurt School so it’s not like it hurts them where it counts.
But nevertheless, unlettered in their own intellectual heritage though they may be, they are commies at heart. Insofar as they have an ideology, this is it.
But the “woke”4 left isn’t just an ideology.
It is, as the boomers like to say, also a mental illness.
This is also simply, obviously true. Rates of emotional disorder spike like the technocrat’s imaginary Singularity the moment you shift from ‘moderately liberal’ to ‘far left’, in a way they absolutely do not when going from ‘conservative’ to ‘hard right’. This isn’t just reflected in the data. They brag about this openly. Being nucking futso is a badge of honour to them. Putting pronouns in your bio is pretty clearly insane all on its own, but just in case you’re not sensitive enough to perceive that, they will also commonly include their roster of psychiatric diagnoses. “Neurodivergent!” peace sign, said the fat bluehair5.
But what kind of crazy are they? Well, all kinds, really. Manic depressive, chronic depressive, bipolar, borderline. Gender dysphoric and homosexual, too, although I think technically according to the current year DSM those aren’t classified as mental illnesses (although they obviously should be). But I don’t think any of these are actually representative, they are not typical.
The characteristic mental illness of our time is narcissism, because the incentive structures of social media incentivize and manufacture narcissists.
Think of the Instaho chasing likes, the Twitter bro chasing retweets, the YouTuber chasing views, the Tinder skank getting a big head because every profile she swipes right on is a match. Think of the endless grind to grow your account by adding ‘friends’ and ‘followers’ so that you can feed that endlessly deepening bottomless pit of dopamine addiction with parasocial community simulators. Hell, I’m not much better – at the end of the day Substack is a social network too, albeit not quite as soullessly algorithmic as the competition. So far. Give it time.
The left, the ‘woke’6 are simply those who are the most easily warped by this state of affairs. Or, from another point of view, the ones best adapted to the parasocial environment. Narcissism thrives, therefore they become narcissists.
And that’s all their ideology really is, at heart. It’s a pose. A distraction. A three card monte act. “Look over here ... look at my values, look at what a good person I am because I have the right identity and I say the right things.” Please pay no attention to the festering gangrene behind the curtain, where a soul should be.
Narcissism isn’t just self-obsession. It’s the obsession with the idea that the self is perfect, as is, and no one can dare tell you otherwise. It’s the idea that anyone who would dare criticize the self is engaging in something akin to lethal violence, and should therefore be attacked with maximum viciousness, their character assassinated and their person excluded from the company of all good people, who by definition are those who provide maximal affirmation to the self.
Any of that sound familiar?
Since the self of the narcissist is a priori perfect as is, it follows that the narcissist can do no wrong and say no wrong. To contrary, all statements are and can be nothing but the truth; all actions are by definition the best possible action. So if the narcissist says something, it is true; if it later turns out not to be true, the narcissist didn’t say that thing. When the narcissist does something to you, sorry ‘for’ you, it was to help you; if it didn’t help you, then they didn’t do it. At least not the way you remember it. You’re probably a conspiracy theorist if you disagree.
Sounding familiar yet?
I’m drawing here pretty heavily on the concept of political ponerology, which is essentially the idea that the worst political catastrophes in history are not due to ideology, which is always fake and ghey, but due to characteropaths cloaking themselves in ideology in order to gull the weak-minded and leverage societal fault-lines to place themselves into power so that they can gorge at the expense of actual humans. There’s a lot more to it and there’s even a book that you should really read, because the guy who wrote it had to burn the original manuscript when the secret police came for him and then re-write it from memory.
Ponerology mainly focuses on sociopaths, these being the most destructive of the intraspecies predators, but for purely rhetorical reasons I prefer to focus on narcissists.
This is because psychopathy has a certain brutal cachet, thanks in part to James Bond.
Narcissism, by contrast, is just fucking embarrassing.
Of all the characteropathies, narcissism is by far the least cool. It’s the psychological equivalent of being a foot fetishist. It’s just fucking lame. It hits them right in the social status.
And it’s accurate.
It fits them like a tranny’s custom-made fake tiddies.
These people don’t have a real ideology. They don’t actually care about black people, who they’d rather cut off their balls than live around, or the ‘environment’, which they’ve never actually lived in, or gays, who I can guaran-fucking-tee you they know very little about7 unless they’re actually gay8. They sure as shit don’t care about the poors, who they avoid like the bubonic plague.
But they want you to think they care about those things.
They want you to think they’re deep, learned, well-read, intelligent, intellekshooall Marxists.
But they aren’t, really.
That’s just a pose, a bit of theatre they put on to reassure you, and themselves, that they’re Good People On The Right Side Of History.
Just look at the picture on Instagram that they had taken at the protest. They’re holding the sign and everything.
It’s all nonsense.
Marxism is just the cladding for their narcissism. Their ideology is Marxist-narcissism. One kind of shit wrapping another, worse-smelling shit. Marxist-narcissists.
Do with that Atomic Word what you will.
But what I hope you do is nuke these fucking vermin from orbit.
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Remember back in the bad old days of, like, three months ago when the dreaded Blue Check was a marker of regime loyalty and compliance? Pepperidge Farm remembers. Thanks, Elon, you’re the best.
First time as tragedy, second as farce.
They aren’t fucking awake. We are. For fuck’s sake.
This literally happened to me, from a literally fat literally blue-haired egregorian.
AAAAAAHHHH I really hate that term.
Doubt me? Ask them about bugchasing. Or The Gift. For bonus points, you can look into bodycount.
In which case, they’re usually narcissistic anyhow, practically by comorbid definition. ‘Catty, emotionally insecure fairy’ is a stereotype for a reason.