Out of Confusion, Chaos
Notes on solidarity, Extinction Rebellion and National Bolshevism
Clothed in Glory
Out of the fires of industry was born the English industrial working class, forged from struggle and suffering, forced from the fields which fed our people and gave meaning to our lives since ancient times. The workers filed into the mills and factories, into the chaos of a new beginning. In anarchy traditional associations split apart like fibres of a torn cloth, the primordial threads of family, faith, solidarity left frayed, and in time the fabric of English solidarity was rewoven by machines, a tapestry which gave new sense to the strange conditions of mass labour. The working class, wrapped in a richer cloth, weaved together golden banners of emancipation with tattered purple habits and torn red-crossed flags to give proletarian strength to the spiritual, divine guidance to toil, and new meaning to England. Whether by the ringing of bells or the blowing of whistles, workers came to find each other again and confronted the alien world of industry to make it known, to make it their own. Years and years of struggle and toil led workers to breath human life into machines, to imbue the industrial with spirit, to love their instruments as neighbors, friends, their tools extensions of themselves and their class. A worker is defined by their work and the work is defined by its worker. Industrial labour is suffering, and the tools and products suffer accordingly. The solidarity of workers, their materials, tools, products and their country, institutions, homes make suffering meaningful, a solidarity formed from ancient transmissions from the primordial past and owed to the promise of a beautiful future, on Earth and in Heaven. The chapel and the union hall are the same thing, as is the market square and the graveyard. From the chapel we make sense of suffering, from the union hall we struggle to overcome its excesses, in the market square our labour is revealed and in the graveyard our life, our pain, is made ever more meaningful in eternal rest.
Again the fabric of solidarity is torn, threads dangling. The fires of the factories, from year to year, are extinguished across England. Solemn priests perform rituals of deconsecration, tight-suited young professionals carve our country’s churches into unaffordable dwellings for their class comrades. Market squares are swept away in council regeneration drives and ran through with inhuman plastic toys and imitation brand t-shirts. More and more men and women are reduced to ashes in an instant to avoid the hefty costs of a burial plot. Our solidarity is waning as a foreclosure of working class existence makes our institutions obsolete, the union officer replaced by the union yuppie, the union hall replaced by the union retail park. Out of the confusion and demoralisation of factory closures and outsourced overseas labour comes the chaos of a new beginning. From behind the flicker of computer screens and sterile glowing whiteness of LEDs is parchment and oil lanterns, further within shines a candle illuminating pages of a holy manuscript, and deeper still shines golden rays of the ancient sun, rallying to break through the white monitor and bathe us in brilliant glory.
With the arrival of a repetitious street politics in the form of Extinction Rebellion there comes onto the scene a new kind of political expression much like the old, 20th century kind, but with a fun twist! An optimistic eschatological struggle for worldly salvation reflected through the mirror of western post-Soviet nihilism, the loss of a definite polarity in geopolitics revealing the embryo of apocalypse cultism. XR doesn’t desire the arrival of the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth in any of its modern secularised permutations, but rather the enforcing of a faux-secular postmodern katechon, a vain attempt to discourage the end of the material world, what is called eco-catastrophe. Here we see the aesthetic and rhetorical strategies conjured to make sense of optimistic eschatologies like Communism, Anarchism and Fascism spun around on themselves to prevent historical breakthrough. Fundamentally, the end of the world known as eco-catastrophe is a half-concealed euphemism for the end of modernity, and in much the same way that their scientific clergy warn that the slipping into apocalypse is potentially irreversible, the ideological clergy of communism and fascism also warned of/heralded the inevitability of historical forces pushing the world to slip into their positive apocalypse. Breakthrough and breakdown are finally revealed to be identical processes, and along with eco-anxiety come other indicators of an all-consuming fear and exhilaration of modernity’s collapse: Dugin writes in The Fourth Political Theory that Russian liberal reformers in the late 80s and early 90s were consumed by a “cargo-cult” mentality towards western “sacral objects”, namely McDonalds, Adidas, blue jeans. These were divine things from without intruding in which indicated an escape from a decaying modern settlement, the construction of a dual power of objects, civilisational competition to refresh and restore the sanctity of Russian civilisation through its own partial destruction — the separation of holy church and worldly state repeated by the separation of socialism’s sacred economy from the preemptively moribund and to-be-dissolved state.
In the west for the last 10 or so years the rising fascination in online spaces with National Bolshevism, “X with Chinese Characteristics’’, Sternberg, etc. all point towards an Oriental political esotericism, an escape from a dying modernity through its shadow, advertised as a total negation — eco-extremism, NazBol, Landian Accelerationism and various other (internally and inter-ideologically) contradictory chimericisms and cyborg ideologies share the same space in purposefully niche political communities, exclusive, particular, tribal, all indicating a rejection of “open society” politics and an embracing of an anti- or meta-universalist position, hyperstitionally charged to create new realities through histrionic response from antifascists and the Eternal Lib. This discursive combat is routed into modernity’s collapse, accelerating the end of stable meaning in once proud and constrained modern political forms. The end of coherent Liberalism, Fascism and Communism come through carnal orgies of rhetorics, signs, strategies, apparent meanings and direct/indirect actions, the demand of all niche anti-liberalisms being “just have fun with it”, and “don’t be cringe” — the end of seriousness brings us right back to a joyous chaos attempting to break out of the stifling confusion of short-circuited modernity, a new beginning that looks beyond an event of such slight significance as eco-catastrophe.