Friday, 23 May 2014

A Simple, Brutal Manifesto for the End Times

Manifestos are a curious literary tool, directed at the politics of art and the art of politics. They are usually over-simplistic, posturing and, from individuals, narcissistic and yet the brute assertion of values is sometimes a good corrective to the simple acceptance of given ideas.

Four years ago, I tried the experiment of putting my core values into a 'Manifesto', an assertive claim for attention and then watched the reaction. The support was instant though that says something about my friends - it seems I had a potential social movement! The tool seemed to work!

But it was also educative. Manifestos - whether surrealist or socialist - rarely come out of one mind alone. They emerge from a dialogue that amends and adds and removes ... while always retaining the core impulse (in my case, broadly libertarian and 'socialist' without the bad bits).

I have tried similar experiments with more specifically political intentions and noted that purity of intent soon comes up against brute political realities. Try suggesting that land be held in common amongst the English, even cautiously - my advice, forget it!.

After a while, the Manifesto becomes a metaphor for the management of the real, the mind seeks to assert power over matter, it is an instrument designed to inspire change in other minds but it must also be pragmatic about what those minds (or at least sufficiently receptive minds) will take.

So, to close, here is that 2010 Manifesto now changed to cover four years of further thought (surprisingly little change in fact) and the thoughts of those who commented at the time which I found I could share, my own Secret Committee. Vorwarts! Excelsior! Onward and Upward!

The 30,000 Year Manifesto  [1]

Do what you want is moral law enough but always mindful of the wants of others. Never complain when the brute force of the social decides to contain your desires to protect others. Kindness and compassion are not weaknesses but kneeling down to psychic vampires and bullies is death to the soul. If society is with you on this, be social. If it is not be proudly anti-social.

An end to the authority of organised religion and the State. Authority comes from oneself first, those one loves second, one's chosen tribe third and the universal last of all. If authority works for you by providing necessary order, accept it - but be prepared to overthrow it on the day the servant seeks to become master. 

Always choose your tribe - never let others impose your tribe from history.

An end to servility of all types, to the claims to superiority of all authorities, especially those based on a text of times past. All abstract ideas are servants. We are their masters.

An end to the slave morality that authority dictates to us out of habit and history where what is good is trampled under the feet of men who are bad. We may need managers and bureaucrats to manage our own complexity but they are not gods and must not get in the way of us becoming gods.

An end to prudery and shame of one's body and one's desires but also to sexual narcissism, the definition of all life by possession of the other. All sexualities are private negotiations of consent in which the social has little to say. You are not your sexuality or your ethnicity, they are mere attributes of you.

An end to the belief that all must be equal in intellect, beauty and talent but without falling into the trap of worshipping any of these mere attributes. None of them matter except as tools or pleasures, they just are. The accidental has its purpose. Let it be. Use it. The stupid, the ugly and the unskilled are precisely equal to the well endowed in their right to regard and respect as persons and their own potential. But the intelligent, the beautiful and the supremely skilled are still there - regardless.

An equality of direction for will and being. The vulnerable and different need the brute strength of the strong to protect them against the average, the cowardly,  the conformist and the mediocre. Above all, against the bureaucrat, the politician, the journalist and the intellectual, the abstractor of policies from ideas. 

The condition of the weakest is always evaded and the claimed advocates of the weakest have turned into an industry of liars. The greedy centre ground has been allowed to leach off both the best and the poorest for far too long ... oligarchical management of popular prejudice may be democracy but it is not what we could be. Beware the God of Fake Democracy.

An end to conscription, compulsion, regimentation, conformity, the worship of the conventional and the normal and to the theft of labour value. Beware the God of False Socialism, the bureaucratic control of the many by the few.

Treasure the children and the young against the claims of the dessicated, the wizened, the corrupted, the past ... eternal life is not the goal but a good life that hands over the property to the sons and daughters improved when it is time to do so. Then, the honour of a good death.

An end to the moulding and training of the young and, instead, a commitment to education through dialogue and struggle, errors, risk and honour. Get out of their way, expect them to try and depose you and glory in their lust for life.

Libera nos!

[1] The Manifesto postulated that we were a species caught between the animal (which we deny) and our potential (which we evade) and that the next stage of our evolution would not be a matter of machines and singularities or the fantasies of the New Age but a dogged business of genetic adaptation of our consciousness to material realities and to each other. And so the task was to create a frame of mind that would change ourselves but also direct our choice of mates and assist in the raising of our children to become strong and, so, to mate with the strong and create an intelligent, free, kind and creative species on a time-scale of 30,000 years. An imaginative tree-planting by a planter who knew that not all trees would survive but that the ones that did would be strong. It was a plantation designed to defeat, if only for a time, the very waste and cruelty of evolution ... and so any cruel intelligent designer that might be behind it. Naturally, I did not really believe it was possible but the act of pretending may still make it possible despite my belief. Such is the paradox of being human.

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