468. The power of the great (XVI)
It is a simple fact, well known to anyone who examines the matter for a moment, that radical right politics attracts mentally unstable people. The reason is because it involves a step to the outside, to an individual point of view—often based on pre-rational intuition or instinct—and this will place you outside consensus reality. Further, insofar as the radical right is religious, particularly in a mystical way, it encourages insights that are often regarded as “mad” and, notoriously, “schizo”—a term that is used, half-jokingly, even in radical right circles.
There are many ways to step outside consensus reality: loyalty to the scientific method, to an autistic degree, may put you at odds with your colleagues and the wider world; loyalty to an artistic vision can, even more so, seem like madness—van Gogh’s imagery was regarded as “insane” at first; and, of course, there are some people who simply cannot fit in, especially when the birds talk to them all day long about how the CIA and Mossad have implanted listening devices in all the Heinz Cream of Tomato Soup tins.
Since the radical right also valorises individual action, often violent action and warriorship, it is inevitable that some mentally unbalanced people will put these ideas into actuality in a perverse way; notoriously, Anders Breivik was one such person, and today news came that in America a shooter killed five people—among his possessions were books by Dave Rubin, Jordan Peterson, and, more substantially, Bronze Age Pervert; further, he had extensively interacted with the right on Twitter.
Occasionally such people will absorb these ideas—essentially ideas around warriorship and violent death—and then put them into warped action; in these “lone wolf” cases it is never *really* about the politics, it is always driven—as are, in fact, many political opinions—by some fundamental unbalance in the psyche that is expressed politically and has placed that person, perhaps without their conscious will, outside consensus reality.
However, here is an alternative picture presented by two men, Yukio Mishima and Dominique Venner, who both died violent deaths—instantiated violent beauty, the warriorship admired by the radical right—although there was nothing psychopathological in what they did. Nominally, Mishima orchestrated a coup—seized an office on a Japanese army base—and yet this was never his full intention; Mishima staged a psychic coup, he was an artist—and his actions and eventual suicide were designed to awaken Japan to her condition; he knew what he did, as Japan’s premier writer, would be seen as highly quixotic and cause people to wonder and question. To this day, even in the West, people wonder and question. Similarly, Venner, a historian and former OAS man, committed suicide in Notre-Dame; naturally, he also left a manifesto to explain his actions—a protest at France’s abolition, at the replacement of the French in their own country; and, indeed, since Notre-Dame burned down only a few years after Venner’s suicide—for some “unknown” reason—you could say the bullet to Venner’s temple was a warning shot.
Note, no other people were hurt in these actions; and these actions will be remembered, whereas people who gun down assorted men—let alone women—in public, even for putatively political reasons, will not be remembered; they will just be added to a long list section in some Wikipedia article on American mass shootings, a monument to a fundamentally disordered society. My point is not that the only acceptable form of political violence is symbolic suicide—just look to Otoya Yamaguchi; however, if you take even the mildest right-wing politics seriously the first things you should learn are discrimination and responsibility. The reason men like Venner and Mishima started on themselves when it came to the use of violence to make a point is because they were highly discriminating and responsible; and they had carefully considered interventions to make in the fate of their countries—interventions sealed with their own blood, not the blood of the innocents.