What this blog is about;
Nick Land's post Against Universalism is reprinted here;
"There’s a philosophical objection to any refusal of universalism that will be familiar from other uses (the denunciation of relativism, most typically). It requires only one step: Isn’t the denial of the universal itself a universalist claim? It’s a piece of malignant dialectics because it demands that we agree. We don’t, and won’t ever, agree. Agreement is the worst thing that could happen. Merely assent to its necessity, and global communism, or some close analog, is the implicit conclusion.
"If there is a universal truth, it belongs only to Gnon, and Gnon is a dark (occulted) God. Traditional theists will be at least strongly inclined to disagree — and that is excellent. We disagree already, and we have scarcely begun.
"There is no ‘good life for man’ (in general) — or if there is we know nothing of it, or not enough. Even those persuaded that they do, on the contrary, know what such a life should be, promote its universality only at the expense of being denied the opportunity to pursue it. If we need to agree on the broad contours of such a model for human existence, then reaching agreement will precede it — and ‘reaching agreement’ is politics. Some much wider world acquires a veto over the way of life you select, or accept, or inherit (the details need not detain us). We have seen how that works. Global communism is the inevitable destination.
"The alternative to agreement is schism. Secession, geopolitical disintegration, fragmentation, splitting — disagreement escapes dialectics and separates in space. Anti-universalism, concretely, is not a philosophical position but an effectively defensible assertion of diversity. From the perspective of the universal (which belongs only to Gnon, and never to man), it is an experiment. The degree to which it believes in itself is of no concern that matters to anything beyond itself. It is not answerable to anything but Gnon. What anyone, anywhere, thinks about it counts for nothing. If it fails, it dies, which should mean nothing to you. If you are compelled to care about someone else’s experiment, then a schism is missing. Of course, you are free to tell it that you think it will fail, if it is listening, but there is absolutely no need to reach agreement on the question. This is what, in the end, non-communism means.
"Non-universalism is hygiene. It is practical avoidance of other people’s stupid shit. There is no higher principle in political philosophy. Every attempt to install an alternative, and impose a universal, reverts to dialectics, communization, global evangelism, and totalitarian politics.
"This is being said here now, because NRx is horribly bad at it, and degenerates into a clash of universalisms, as into an instinctive equilibrium. There are even those who confidently propose an ‘NRx solution’ for the world. Nothing could be more absurd. The world — as a whole — is an entropy bin. The most profoundly degraded communism is its only possible ‘universal consensus’. (Everyone knows this, when they permit themselves to think.)
"All order is local — which is to say the negation of the universal. That is merely to re-state the second law of thermodynamics, which ‘we’ generally profess to accept. The only thing that could ever be universally and equally distributed is noise.
"Kill the universalism in your soul and you are immediately (objectively) a neoreactionary. Protect it, and you are an obstacle to the escape of differences. That is communism — whether you recognize it, or not."
And to quote Patri Friedman;
"We want a maximally open economy, and we think that free exit is so important that we’ve called it the only Universal Human Right."
And Finally, to quote myself;
"The formula given is [Nx(N-1)]/2 where N is the number of people in the group. This bounds common values at an upper limit of no more than 400 people, assuming they debate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for 277 days straight, with no one person speaking for more or less than 5 minutes. Above a certain limit, the ability to establish values breaks down, and a central authority is required to establish a common value system/legal code. Even if you do it more efficiently by having them take turns speaking publicly it is still N x T (number of people x time to speak for each), which for 500 people who each speak for 5 minutes is still 42 hours of taking.
"And they have to decide that value code on each and every point of law.
"The obvious solution is a market for values or a patchwork, but human monkey brains are evolutionarily habituated to thinking in terms of “we,” when "we" is not possible in large societies.
"'We is mathematically impossible,” should probably be the first lesson taught in high school."Agreement in large-scale societies is impossible. Oh sure, you can have a government indoctrinate a set of common values that all are required to believe. You can always have a centralizing force of power impose values and laws on people, but this is not agreement — it is tyranny. It may be soft tyranny, it may use propaganda and education to convince people, it may succeed in getting the average unaware person to feel they are free, but it is not agreement. It is not really a choice. No matter how totalitarian your politics it will never produce complete agreement on any set of values. 400 million people cannot even agree that the Earth is round. Expecting them to agree on anything, even racial equality, is a ludicrous exercise in mathematical ignorance.
When people talk about what "we" must believe, when they assert that "we" must debate an issue, implicitly they assert that the loser in the debate will live under the winners rules. This is the opposite of freedom.
Most people cannot think, will not think, and probably should not think; they need guidance to live their lives. Most people are cognitive misers. Exit is for the only people who are actually capable of freedom, the people with the will-to-think. It is not so much that people without the will-to-think don't deserve freedom; they just won't have it. If a man always believes what he is told then his sovereignty is by definition somewhere outside himself, and he is not in charge of his life, no matter what he thinks about the matter. It is irrelevant whether he lives in a democracy of not, this just establishes his perceptual freedom, and not his actual. He will feel he is free, even though he is not. Exit is freedom for those who can think, for the only people for whom freedom is actually possible. Exit be my God.