Who Rules the World? An Interview with DC Miller

 

The following is an interview with the author of Dracula Rules the World and Mark Zuckerberg is His Son, DC Miller. The book is a trip, skipping between reality and unreality? Where is the line. Discover for yourself.

 

Blurb: When generic millennial computer science graduate Nick Chip accepts a job as a tester for a shadowy Facebook affiliate, little does he realize he’s going to be the subject. Like a nightmarish hybrid of The Manchurian Candidate and your own alienated existence, Dracula Rules the World grabs you by the eyeballs like an algorithm, and doesn’t let them go.

 

First of let’s talk about the cover. Where did it come from?

I didn’t have a lot do with that. Vincente Guedes, the publisher at Empresa Ibis, found the artist, she made the image, and they designed the book together. ‘Dracula’ ultimately is a pulp science fiction novel, and Guedes wanted to capture the classic look of the genre. The artist is http://annasebastian.com and she’s taking commissions.

 

The book is told as a recounting, a story being stated to the reader. Where does the inspiration come for this? Lovecraft? You namedrop Ligotti (i.e. ‘The bar was called Ligeti’s, or Ligotti’s’) as well. Do you think it’s quite a simple method or does it take some skill to pull off? 

The inspiration came initially from a phrase in Dylan’s memoir – he briefly lives with someone in New York whom he reports as saying ‘crazy things that made sense in a cryptic way like “Dracula rules the world and Gutenberg is his son.”‘ I really just updated it. I read a lot of media theory some point, people like Régis Debray and Friedrich Kittler, where the idea is media controls the planet, by controlling our perceptions of it, and the most important form of media today is social media. I was also always interested in writing produced by the insane, people preaching on the street, ‘outsider’ writing you could call it, and I liked the thought of doing something in this vein. So the first of all I wrote a Chinese Dada version of the book with a friend of mine from Shanghai, as a kind of joke. But I was in Iceland a few years ago, working on another project, and it occurred me that it would be an even better joke if I could make a case for it, so I wrote this one as well. As for how much skill it takes, or took, I couldn’t say.

 

Well let’s just call it natural talent then. Another inspiration is of course Orwell (the last line). Given it does focus on Facebook and Zuckerberg, do you think people actually appreciate how Orwellian everything is becoming? This part towards the end of the book is emblematic: ‘I took another sip of wine. Zuckerberg was continuing to stare at me intensively but not aggressively. “We’ve found in tests that this wine is the most liked,” he said. “How did you find that out?” I asked. “We look at a lot of data. Especially to do with user entry and exit points. Does the question bother you?”‘

It’s been pretty amazing in the last few years to observe people who I previously assumed were at least of reasonable intelligence going completely off the rails, and I think that social media has had a lot to do with that. Zuckerberg embodies it, but it isn’t only him – it’s the model of engagement, and relation to the world, therefore of consciousness, which social media promotes, this kind of very basic, quantitative, mesmerizing structure. What’s your brand? Do you like X, or not? It’s an extremely superficial mode of being, and that’s the mode of thought which today is being reinforced across the world. With respect to Orwell perhaps that reference has been overplayed, and also misconstrued, there are parallels but also differences. The falsification and rewriting of history and the manipulation of language is a commonality, obviously, but the tyrannical power which characterizes the current regime is also in certain ways extremely pathetic – Antifa, for example, who are funded and controlled by the State, are violent masked criminals, but they also pitiable losers, the people who work at CNN are not smart people.

 

I definitely take your point about him being misconstrued, I think that’s important. It’s interesting, your knowledge of media theory plays through the actual plot with finesse. The story itself is quite contemporary, featuring figures like Julian Assange. But the messages, I suppose never come across as forced.

Like I said, the title came first, and then my ambition after that was just writing something that was entertaining, and wasn’t absolutely stupid. A little stupid, fine, just not completely. I also thought that the outlandish title and the highly contemporary theme would make it easier to publish, but this wasn’t the case. I probably wrote to three dozen of them. Nobody was interested, and very few responded, before I heard back from Empresa Ibis.

 

Yeah, trust me, publishers have a very small bandwidth of allowable projects. Moving on, what are your reading habits, and are they in anyway linked to your writing habits? 

I mainly read the Bible.

 

I have to say that surprises me, but cool. You do what a lot of writers are incapable of doing, and that’s subtlety. There’s a bit where the female character gets naked, then you jump 20 minutes ahead. Then a few paragraphs later you reveal she and the MC had sex. Why do you think writers are so obsessed with explaining everything?

Perhaps to conceal the fact they have nothing to say.

 

There was a paragraph that grabbed me when you were describing the VR environment the MC works in. ‘It had become a second nature – a living, swimming cloud. I was simultaneously inside it, and it was inside me, composed of me, soaked with information, arriving through a flow which it was possible to enlarge or to taper.’ Are you describing Intelligence here? I think it’s interesting in that it could be taken as a description of the Holy Spirit. 

The underlying question of the book is really, at what point does Nick Chip enter virtual reality, or indeed, at what point does he leave? And we can ask this question of ourselves. To what extent are we free of the synthetic discourse that envelopes us, at what point, and how? I think the answer to that question is religious.

 

I can see the blurring of the lines…Can you elaborate on that? Do you think perhaps that people reject their religious impulse because they want to remain in the matrix, so to speak?

I think we’re living in a fundamentally Satanic culture, and it isn’t necessarily easy to know how to escape. The devil, probably, is man.

 

There is a lengthy section about the Carthaginians and their darker practices. Do you think all suitably advanced civilizations are doomed to sacrifice their children?

There’s an interview where Michel Serres describes the parallels between the Carthaginian religion and the space program in which he describes the Challenger disaster as a kind of disavowed sacrifice: ‘Baal is in the Challenger, and the Challenger is in Baal; religion is in technology; the pagan god is in the rocket; the rocket is in the statue; the rocket on its launching pad is in the ancient idol – and our sophisticated knowledge is in our archaic fascinations.’ I basically agree; enlightenment is our myth. Ultimately, the structures of our technological, modern society are mythical, not rational, the capacity to exercise independent judgement is extremely rare, and even dangerous. The majority, especially the majority of the educated, which is really, the indoctrinated, are superstitious and conformist, and sacrificial violence underpins everything we do. The only question is who, in our society, opposed to others, can be murdered with impunity, and for what. Seventy million American women have had abortions since Roe vs Wade in 1973, this is very unusual historically, and people think’s it normal. As Chelsea Clinton said recently, it was good for GDP.

 

Dracula, Nosferatu, Baphomet. The book seems to creepily skirt around possible occult issues which are generally linked to abortion, sacrifice. Recently there was an academic woman who said that mass Aztec sacrifice was ‘culturally’ relative and so not necessarily a bad. Maybe the book answers this, but do you think people deliberately flirt with demons, or are simply naive? Or even malicious?

There’s no doubt in my mind that demons walk the Earth, but again, this proposition is more banal then people realize. The most obvious form that they take is addiction, and addiction defines a lot of forms of contemporary behavior – addiction to drugs, addiction to sex, addiction to images, addiction to status. There’s a singer I like called Willis Earl Beale, I remember, he did a great interview where he talked about pursuing things that ‘don’t exist and have never existed.’ How many people are doing that? A good friend of mine put it really nicely lately: ‘If addiction were a person, they would be in a prison.’ And Dracula is the king of addiction.

 

Literally sucking the life out of you. There’s the hint of conspiracy in the bit about Carthaginians so I want to ask about conspiracies. Who are the people that believe in them? Low, mid or high IQ? Why are there so many conspiracies flavored for both left and right? How can we both be fully aware of conspiracies and yet indulge them? Is the main problem with conspiracies that people never consider that they might be wrong?

Again, I think that this is normal. Conspiracies have always existed, and there’s no reason to think they aren’t active today. The question is how much we can know about them, and, I guess, do about them, which in most cases is probably nothing. I have a professional interest in trying to understand what’s going on, and it seems to me that the important facts are mostly there to see, if you’re prepared to look, but the question also is why. Why are they doing this? Arguably, any sufficiently regressed intelligence is indistinguishable from malice. But I’ve also always liked the idea of a good conspiracy – like the Rosicrucians, for example – lurking in the shadows, but benevolently. But I can’t say any more about this now.

 

Moving on then. What do you think the role of fiction is in the wider cultural sphere, and dare I say its role in politics? So much of fiction is super liberal. Booksellers are progs, publishers are progs, authors are progs. Is there space for right wing literature or is it just that people towards the right are uncreative?

I don’t find the output of the contemporary publishing industry too compelling, and I don’t pay much attention to it, same as with contemporary art. In my opinion, fiction has to tell the truth, and it seems to me that’s something that contemporary publishing can’t do.

 

Let’s talk about Phillip Kindred Dick. I want to have my interviewees pick one book they either love or want to read, and then we discuss it. But you chose an author so I read both A Maze of Death and The Man in the High Castle. I’m sure I will read more though. Tell me, what do you think of PKD himself, as a writer? 

I read pretty much everything Dick wrote as a teenager, and then in my twenties I was involved with academics like Mark Fisher, who came out of the CCRU at Warwick and were interested in theory-fiction, which is one way you can read Dick. I think Fisher had his problems but he probably summarized Dick as well as anyone when he wrote, ‘It increasingly seems as if Dick did not so much predict the future as dream it in advance.’ His books describe flattening subjectivities and affects, incoherent and contradictory transmissions, social and psychological disintegration, which is the world that we’re in now. The central point is Dick was somehow something different to a writer, even though he also was an archetypal writer, to the extent the focus of interest was really metaphysical and speculative, and fiction was his method for exploring that. And that’s also the case here.

 

Certainly he seems to be another source of inspiration for Dracula Rules the World, where you explore the nature of reality, characters that seem duplicitous, interpretation of history, etc. Would you say his style effects your writing? This quote in particular is a good example of that exploration: ‘Because a nation was also a semi-imaginary place. Just like cyberspace. “The idea of a nation,” he said. “The myth. Its shape in the imagination. Its relationship to ritual. Its feelings. Because my mother’s family were from the Crimea. So they’d never even visited Armenia! Yet still it exerted this powerful force.”‘

The main character in Dracula Rules the World is called Nick Chip, after the main character in Ubik, and the novel basically adopts Dick’s signature theme, of multiple shifting and unstable realities, but I’m really interested in why they shift, and what that looks like. The idea of a nation as an ‘imaginary community’ is a dogma on the left today, but imaginary is usually taken as a synonym for fake, or non-existent, which is an extremely superficial viewpoint on the subject. The truth is that reality and the imagination can’t easily be distinguished, at least not straightforwardly, and the relationship to ritual in that respect is crucial, because it’s really repetition that sustains sustains realities through time. I read last week that, on average, people touch their phones two thousand times a day.

 

Dick plays hard and fast with the nature of reality. The obvious one is Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, but for this interview I read A Maze of Death, and that does a massive switcheroo at the end, and also The Man in the High Castle of course plays with an alternative world where the Nazis won World War 2. Do you consider this one of his strengths, that all his books focus on one theme, namely ‘reality’?

Dick says somewhere that all of his fiction is motivated by two main questions: ‘What is Real?’ and ‘What is Human?’ What’s interesting to me is how these questions are connected. What can we, as humans, as human individuals, know about reality? What’s our relation to it? Personally, the moments in Dick’s writing, and his biography, that really stick with me are the moments of humanity, like his soulful androids, the fact that in Monopoly he was always the shoe, or his habit when he lived in Orange County of taking midnight breaks from writing to get a roast beef sandwich and an Orange Crush from Trader’s Joe. Dick also said, ‘Reality is whatever, when you stop believing in it, doesn’t go away.’

 

Some people say PKD is a bad writer, but I didn’t pick that up at all from his writing. It’s very clear, the characters seem real, and best of all his book are short and punchy. Do you have any thoughts on the strength of his prose?

People talk about bad writing as if there was a clear consensus on it, but the polite, polished writing that comes out of writing programs – well, I don’t read those books personally, and I don’t respect people who do. Dick, in my opinion, wasn’t boring, which is the only real sin.

 

Most writing today is either written about minorities, whether that is refugees or the ultra-rich, but never really about the common people like with PKD. Do you think people who say he is a bad writer just don’t like the people he writes about, or him as a person, or are they jealous?

I don’t care about minorities or refugees.

 

What about women?

Not as such. But let me put this more precisely – I don’t accept this blackmail, that is, the prostitution of literature to political propaganda. It’s normal today to hear about marginalized voices, privileged by their marginalization, ironically, whether imaginary or real, but fiction isn’t a democracy, and I don’t read out of a misdirected sense of charity, but because I want to understand something about what living on this planet, right now, means. If someone wrote a book from the perspective of a Muslim taxi driver in a generic northern British town, an honest book, you understand, which would also be a brutal book, I might read that.

 

Exactly, so you want to read stories about real people, not imagined oppression or hierarchies. Not people’s personal paranoia or projections (unless it’s drug-induced paranoia, I suppose). Finally, what’s your favorite PKD and why? What do should the reader here pick up next?

I think The Dark-Haired Girl. It’s a strange book, compiled mainly out of letters Dick writes from Vancouver to a series of dark haired girls, telling each of them how special and important they were, in the exact same way. It’s the book of a man on the edge of a breakdown, which is indeed what happened next: Dick tried to kill himself. I’m also a screenwriter and I’m working currently on an adaptation.

 

You can buy Dracula Rules the World and Mark Zuckerberg is His Son here.

Propaganda in the Service of Mammon

Everybody is quite aware of the propaganda prevalent in the world today. Lies by omission and commission are used in conjunction with imagery to push certain lines and agendas. What perhaps isn’t so fully realised is how propaganda works and feeds. And to get a fully understanding one should read Propaganda by Edward Bernays.

In it Bernays explains where propaganda came from, what its uses are and how to employ it effectively. He gives us some remarkable insights. For example, he provides a prescient  summary of how the modern Cathedral works when he says, ‘Our invisible governors are, in many cases, unaware of the identity of their fellow members in the inner cabinet.’ When he talks about how effective propaganda can be, he ominously uses the women’s suffrage movement as an example, saying, ‘If the suffrage campaign did nothing more, it showed the possibilities of propaganda to achieve certain ends.’ And those ‘certain ends’ continue today. But he reveals his true motivation later in the book with the following statement: ‘Social progress is simply the progressive education and enlightenment of the public mind in regard to its immediate and distant social problems.’ Propaganda is a psychological tool that could have been used for the better; unfortunately it has easily been utilised as a weapon.

One of the more interesting aspects of the book is how propaganda has been fully realised within the business setting, even though it was originally used by governments during war time. To effectively persuade consumers, businesses must understand the common sentiments (or what are felt to be common sentiments) of society in terms of likes and dislikes. So a general swell of support is amplified by businesses in their advertising which then affects consumers. See my post in how it relates to movies and advertising. Bernays was extremely influential and his teachings have only become accelerated as politics and business use propaganda in ever more audacious ways. The fact that people in power switch between business and politics clearly shows how the two intertwine. But more than the world of 1984 where governments rule over us, we have to be more wary of the ways in which business influences are decisions, choices and beliefs.

I work for a media company, and recently we were sent around a info deck from J. Walter Thompson Intelligence, a group that follows consumer trends. So if you ever wondered why it seems like advertising companies all seem to push similar vibes, agendas and politics at roughly the same time, this is one of the reasons. I’ve pulled some screenshots from the deck for some brief discussions.

 

intro

Obviously you can see from the intro that there is will be one of the most pozzed documents your eyes will ever see.

 

04.JPG

This is definitely a trend I noticed. Accelerationism is in full force. Women don’t want feminist stories any more. They want the next thing! It’s not all about women, it’s about breaking down gender barriers completely and exploring every aspect of sexuality and identification. Interesting that there are so, so many slides directly related to feminism, and the only ones related to masculinity are how to dim it down. For example…

 

makeup.JPG

I honestly don’t know about ‘legions’ of men wearing makeup, but that certainly sounds like propaganda to me. Notice how beauty products are ‘transformative’? Everything has to be changed, but only via buying stuff. Apparently makeup has always been to conceal ‘perceived flaws’, but if you are using your face as a canvas, then you are still hiding yourself!

 

dna.JPG

The only time where race is real is when you can make people pay for it, or when it isn’t white people being interested in it. Make no mistake, they will draw every last cent out of your genes and DNA.

artificialnature.JPG

Do I really need to discuss much about the idea behind ‘artificial nature’? Bread and circuses, my friends. In fact, as Bernays notes:

It was the amusement business—first the circus and the medicine show, then the theater—which taught the rudiments of advertising to industry and commerce.

 

mentalhealth.JPG

No one seems to question why there is such a rise in mental health like anxiety and depression. Just saying, it might have something to do with materialism? A complete lack of meaning that can only me temporarily filled by consumerism? The two-faced nature of selling psychological health is sickening.

 

plussize.JPG

lmao.JPG

As if you didn’t already know, plus-size is so hot right now. This is so audacious I can’t even tell if that is a deliberate pun in the last paragraph…. Either way accepting who you are is the talk of the weak, and chasing an ideal has been the driving force behind our culture. Sure, the ‘ideal’ pushed by consumerism is false, but combating consumption with more consumption feels self-defeating. A pity the notion of finding yourself has been perverted for propaganda purposes. To blithely state the the average size has increased and not even blink is worrisome. No, we don’t need to accommodate all shapes and forms, we need to try and reduce our clothing size.

ohvey.JPG

Wow, two awful demographics in one, who would have thought we could sink so low?

 

politicalconsuemrs.JPG

And here we have the full force of propaganda in a nutshell. Let’s take a recent Australian example: gay marriage. A huge array of Australian companies have come out in support of gay marriage, urging the government to ‘make the right choice’. This is of course a branding exercise, and if you are seen to oppose such an obviously progressive stance – like Coopers Brewery apparently were – then consumers will ‘vote with their wallet’. You have to be making a political statement in the Current Year if you want to have any chance of gathering an audience.

The fundamentals of propaganda are deeply rooted in psychology — Bernays was a distant cousin of Freud. He notes that:

These special types of appeal can be popularized by the manipulation of the principles familiar to the propagandist—the principles of gregariousness, obedience to authority, emulation, and the like.

Manipulation is the key word. The propagandist can manipulate via emulation in that we humans have a tendency to copy what others are doing. I mean in this in the most basic sense in that we tend to even copy the gestures and body language of those we talk to. We also have a tendency to appeal to authority. Even if we profess to not believe in religion, there is always a Jeff Bezos or Steve Jobs. And of course, we want to be seen to be happy and agreeable, so it is best to go along with whatever seems to be positive. Using these basics of the human psyche businesses can use imagery, words and a whole range of weapons to shift opinions and sway the masses.

singleladies.JPG

Again, this is nothing we didn’t know already, but it just shows the pathology of having no standards. Atomised consumerism is death by a thousand cuts, or in this case, by a thousand subscription services. By the way, there was no slide on single men.

 

techtrolls.JPG

‘Consumers are looking for comfort and reassurance in divided times…’ So let’s continue enforcing that bubble! We’ve all noticed the crackdown against the ‘AltRight’ (I use that term to cover everything not progressive) whether it is actual Twitter bannings or endless opinion pieces giving normie readers the juicy gossip about what goes on in the Dark Web. Expect brands to continue to make themselves sterile.

 

pornhub.JPG

What can I say, it’s a disgusting mindset. Blasphemies against the Church, insinuated underage vibes… This is degeneracy with full advertiser backing.

 

witches.JPG

witches2.JPG

Aside from the heresy invoked here, I find it quite an interesting and provocative statement. Is Christianity and the West providing enough female autonomy? Or have we just failed to express to women the power that they do have? I wouldn’t say that last paragraph is wrong, but all that means is that we should have done something to fix the situation a long time ago to avoid women falling into covens.

That’s just a snapshot of what brands will be looking doing in the near future (if they aren’t doing it already). Politics feeds business which then feeds the public. It is a feedback system that is near impossible to break apart. Most people can’t see it and to them propaganda is just a thing for war time and politics. You, however, can see it all around you, and there is nothing you can do. The only option is to retreat, to block it out and work on more important things, to banish materialism from you life. You must go beyond what is presented to you. As Bernard says:

Truth is mighty and must prevail, and if any body of men believe that they have discovered a valuable truth, it is not merely their privilege but their duty to disseminate that truth.

If only lies were not propagated as truths.

Fear of an Amazonian Future

For a good number of years now pundits have discussed the ominous rise of tech companies. Google, Facebook, Apple: all of them groping for control in different ways. But personally, particularly because of the industry I work in, I have always been most fearful – and most in awe of – Amazon.

Amazon grew off the back of selling books. At the time during the 1990s this would have seemed ludicrous. How could this internet upstart challenge Barnes & Noble or Borders? But challenge them – and win – it did. If you can systemise and sell a product as varied as books, you can sell anything. Books come in all shapes, sizes, and page lengths. The added bonus is that nothing is as intimate as a book, and as the old adage goes, you can tell a lot about a person from their bookshelf. 

So while Google, Facebook and Apple were all gathering data on you via your direct interaction with platforms, Amazon was analysing your buying habits – a far scarier prospect. For years they went hard on scale, with massive investments in warehouses, and monetarily never made much profit, with hard discounts and reinvestment of revenue back into R&D. This strategy  paid off like little else. From books they have expanded to general goods, groceries, cloud computing and more. Heck, Jeff Bezos bought the Washington Post. They’ve got their fingers in so many content pies that they come across as anything other than humble. Sinister is the word I would use.

See, the key to Amazon is content. If they have all (relatively speaking) of the content, then it doesn’t even matter if they have the ‘best’ content. Amazon are now the biggest publisher of translated books. Did you even know they have publishing houses? Not only do they have a monopoly on ebooks, print books, and self-published books, they now have a majority share in foreign language translations. Content is king. The more you have, the more you sell. It’s simple physics. And the more you sell, the more customers you have with which to sell other products to. There is nothing scarier, in my eyes, than a Singular Retailer, one that can almost literally spoon feed you products. Science fiction writers showed us the horrors of a consumer dystopia; I’m just surprised horrorfied by how easily we took it up. Their tactics are truly forward-facing, and truly evil if you are a small business. And it’s all because of books.

The easiest and most frightening future I can imagine is one where civilians watch their Amazon TV, read on their Kindle (or maybe just listen to the books on Audible), receive their groceries via Amazon drones and then skip down the street to their local Amazon coffee house. And then, latte in hand, you go to your work – at the District Amazon Mega Warehouse. The local is dead and the globocorp is real. 

How can one combat this juggernaut? Not very easily, because convenience is key to the heart of the consumer, and Amazon thrives on making everything as not-difficult as possible. The fact is, most people in cities have grown up buying from corporations. We are indoctrinated into getting things cheaply, easily and nastily. Amazon promises to deliver that in spades, and in doing so destroy its competitors. We will barely notice the shift.

Neoreaction is True Acceptance

img_20170223_212036

The first sentence is how the world in general sees life. ‘This is good, and that is bad’ is the general mantra of the government and populace. An obvious example is immigration, and specifically Islamic immigration. Acceptance doesn’t mean you rollover and take it, pretending it is beneficial.

Acceptance should be acknowledgement of negative elements and either working at the margins to create a better reality, or to create an alternative reality for when ‘acceptance’ collapses in on itself. This is neoreaction. The two strands sit together: one for change, one for what comes next.

The above image is a quote from a book on CBT, which on first principles looks to me like little more than a more engaged form of Stoicism. So, thinking through negative thoughts and combating them with acceptance (not the kind where you pass it off as good). This manifests itself in so many ways and facets of life. But the bad form of acceptance is directly linked to the thought processes of the democratic society we live in. There is a deluge of bad things happening as it all breaks apart, and the majority accept and endorse this collapse. They don’t take the time to think through their reactions. And that is where NRx steps in.

Keep thinking of alternatives and what comes next.

The Ascendancy of the Troll Generation

This is a tale of the trolls and the triggered. The ghostly hint of a troll pervades everything we see and hear. Is it real, is it fake? No wonder trigger warnings and safe spaces are commonplace. They are preemptive strikes against the nature of trolling. People can avoid anything that might trigger them and anyone that might be a troll: Insta-blocks on social media, websites close down comments or require Facebook linking, and echo-chamber algorithms. But trolling has gone mainstream.

For one, Donald Trump may be the first troll President. I personally think it is far more likely that he really did want to become President, despite the rumour that he did it on a lark and suddenly found himself there. That’s a happy fabrication for people who still need to laugh at Trump. After-the-fact truth telling. He didn’t become President to troll; he became President by trolling. You can’t tell me these aren’t trolls, attempts for the lulz:

The sign of a true troll is when people take you on face value and work themselves into a froth over it. It’s a form of cognitive dissonance, where a new reality strikes against what a person holds in their head. Naturally, this can cause people to react, either with anger, confusion or some other fever. Trump has done this his whole life, and went into overdrive for the election.

But it isn’t just Trump. Trolling is a well-acknowledged activity online, and its tendrils seek out ever more mainstream targets. Of course given the state of modern media, they take it hook, line and sinker.

Taking the Cult of Kek seriously is some serious troll bait.

Back in 2009 4chan trolled the Time’s Person of the Year poll.

Here’s a guy ranting and trolling a bunch of anti-Trumpers:

As Whitney Phillips says in her book This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things: Mapping the Relationship between Online Trolling and Mainstream Culture: “Trolls believe that nothing should be taken seriously, and therefore regard public displays of sentimentality, political conviction, and/or ideological rigidity as a call to trolling arms. In this way, lulz functions as a pushback against any and all forms of attachment.”

Trump is anti-establishment, and those that revel in his trolling are also mostly against political correctness and the hand-wringing we see in society at large. In order to break apart the political hegemony and the ideological underpinnings of modern liberalism one must troll, and troll hard. Everyone takes themselves far too seriously and so the time has come to teach them lessons, mostly with humour at their expense.

While Whitney is a typical SJW, her book does offer some insights, namely the nature of trolling and how in fact trolling is a reflection of real life behaviour. She posits that trolling activities have always been a part of life (though of course she means in terms of people always being bigoted) and so the line between online and real life blurs. Trolling involves masking our identity, but at the same time removes the masks that we wear in day to day life. This is a confusing game-within-a-game. Are we true to ourselves when we are at work, amongst friends or talking to family? Or are we only ‘real’ when we put on the mask and are able to be rid of societal norms?

This is a very real feeling for many internet natives. Anonymity allows us to break from conformity and to truly converse on an intellectual level. Perhaps, then, this is why the liberal echo chamber is so intellectually backwards: everyone knows each other, has their life’s resume under their Twitter profile, and so conformity is the only option. As Howard Rheingold says in The Virtual Community: “In some ways, the medium will, by its nature, be forever biased toward certain kinds of obfuscation. It will also be a place that people often end up revealing themselves far more intimately than they would be inclined to do without the intermediation of screens and pseudonyms.” Anonymity is good for the discourse of ideas.
Those who studied the early web, like Rheingold and Sherry Turkle, would visit obscure online realms such as MUDS and Usenet groups. From these experiences they drew psychological responses from people on the web. Trolls have been prevalent since the birth of the internet, and now we are witnessing their influence on the world.

https://twitter.com/ChateauEmissary/status/799705698246402048

If you do study these antiquated online historians, there is some you will learn, a lot you will familiar with, and plenty that is laughably wrong. For example, this paper by Licklider and Taylor: ‘Life will be happier for the on-line individual because the people with whom one interacts most strongly will be selected more by commonality of interests and goals than by accidents of proximity.’ True in some regards, but far too idealistic. The reality is that this ‘commonality of interests and goals’ has led to  ideological warfare and hyper-atomization, a side effect of which is the complete breakdown of the media and political landscapes. Some us, however, do enjoy this chaos.

A Personal Story

I am personally fascinated by online communities, and this is partly from my own web-upbringing. The first forum I ever frequented was the myg0t forums, a cesspit of flame wars and gore images. This was trial by fire in the home of the trolls. The entire modus operandi of myg0t was to troll, whether that was team killing Counter-strike players, IRC spam, or fooling idiots into baking cakes. This was the place where I flamed other members, posted ‘rage’ videos and collages (either recording angry people in-game or posting a multitude of screenshots of their rage), and watched the founder of myg0t snort OxyContin on webcam. They trolled Christian forums and gave away false hacks. From that moment I have trolled.

You can’t find myg0t anymore. The website is permanently down, but you can still reach out to former members on reddit. The thing is, myg0t is only one of the troll groups from the early days. The troll mentality was strong at 4chan and elsewhere, though many communities have been completely subverted by SJWs, Something Awful being a prominent one. When a community begins to change and its older members feel like the spirit is being extinguished, there are two options. The first, like in America, is to shutdown dangerous change with a firm hand. The second, which happens online, is simply to create a splinter group. The path of least resistance.

There were two big gaming forums in Australia, both tied to magazines: PC Powerplay and Hyper. Both saw totalitarian administration that shut down dialogue and both underwent many changes, including attempts to artificially boost the community. Both forums splintered.

PCPP split into one forum that was little better in terms of the ‘clean’ image, only allowing slightly more free speech. This free speech meant that a core of members were able to voice their discontent before splintering again. A very similar process occurred at Hyper. That said, both these Stage 2 forums are very different from one another. The former is a postmodern island that has locked out all newcomers. You cannot even browse the forums as a Guest. They will die off from heat-death, a lack of invigorating energy. The latter forum is far more open, without any rules. It has high energy and a large output of ideas and discourse. Between the two there is a lot of psychology at work, and a lot to learn when it comes to how communities form.

What’s the point of this story? To show how real life can be reflected online, how the digital trajectories are still shaped by very real people even though they hide behind a veneer of anonymity. Trolling has been a big part of this story. One of the main reasons for these splinter forums is that people felt triggered by uncouth behaviour and wanted to feel safe. All this did was create a vacuum and a lack of energy, which inevitably leads to decay from within. Human beings need conflict in order to function.

On a bigger scale this is a call for nationalism. The USA was heading towards atomization, and now, through the art of the troll, it is potentially going to be unified. Trump can’t just create a splinter country (sorry Calexit hopefuls). Nationalism pits country against country, and this is the competition we need in order to accelerate. The homogenisation that comes with globalisation is the heat-death humanity will suffer. Until we discover an alien civilization to compete against, we need sovereign nations to compete against each other. This is what we have to learn from the trolls.

So don’t conform, tell the truth. Sometimes trolling is indistinguishable from truth-telling. Other times it is just another way of getting people to come to the truth. Don’t let society’s fear of feeding the trolls stop the truth from coming out. There is far more at stake than hurt feelings and the need to fit in.

 

 

Every Planet We Reach is Dead #2

The airlock of Junko is bright, fluorescent light painting everyone in unnatural shades. Joan watches as Lin Pei steps onto her suit printer before the others and freeze stiff. The woman’s lungs are still pumping back to life, her joints ache, the cold slowly seeping out. And now she’s getting wrapped up again.

The printer coil surrounds her, starting from her boots. Warm synthetic material covers her from bottom to top. She doesn’t flinch. It’s like body paint, a vitality giving inner layer for their spacesuits. She is finished first and steps back to receive the exosuit. Junko is soft in her touch, clamping, slotting and clipping the suit around Lin’s limbs and torso. It’s over in thirty seconds. Lin reaches into the collar and retrieves the earpiece.

‘And you’re live, Lin.’

Joan’s voice reach Lin, then the others as they each suit up, reading all the vitals the nanotech of the inner layer is feeding her, checking them off like a good pilot. Cams, audio, heartbeats – they’re all available to her instantaneously, thrown up by Junk.

We ready to do this?

Rigel turns to prep the boarding team: Lina and the twins, Hotham and Jay.

Alright crew, we have arrived. It’s been a long time coming, but we’ve gone over our training procedures. We’re entering an atmosphere-less hulk so we take it easy until we can boot her.

Joan’s mind wanders. She flicks cameras to the Major, who has retreated to her station. Joan brings the screen closer. More machine than person, the Major is connected to her personal hub at the other end of the ship, lost in her own objectives. Behind her the massive 3D printer is constructing something. Joan has already tried to dig into the Major’s past and reasons for being here, but it’s virtual block after digital deadzone. She’s untouchable.

The next camera goes to Unaipon, the scholar, also busy doing whatever it is he does. He seems to flit from one stations to the next, never happy with whatever he is working on for longer than a few minutes. Or he’s working on each simultaneously.
It feels like yesterday since she saw these people last. Of course in reality it has been about 250 years. Joan grips her holds, white knuckles. The abyss of the time period baulks her at the best of times. A voice yells in her ear.

Joan.

She switches back to the airlock.

‘Yes captain?’

I need you awake, pilot, I know you’re good but you’re not do-it-in-your-sleep good.

Someone laughs.

‘Even if I were out cold, I’d still do a better job than you, sir.’

She sees him look directly at the cam and give a smile.

Right, are we ready to do this? Hotham, Jay, take point. I’ll follow and Lin, you’re last. Joan, hit it when you’re ready.

The boarding party gets into formation, sleek suits ready for their first run, bulky equipment in strength-enhanced arms. Joan hits the release.

***

Lin watches her compatriots disappear into the yawning dark ahead of her, the separation of life and death. She steps in behind them automatically, not wanting to but it’s why she’s here. To go where almost no one has been before. Or at least to discover why those that did go before went quiet.

Her headlamps come on automatically as she crosses into the lifeless hulk. The light captures her crewmates before she turns to look around. The space seems like the evil twin of Junko, a leviathan with the life crushed out of it. They all cross into what had been the living area.

The whole ship is similar, but smaller. The tech is older, less sophisticated. They can only dock because all ships have been made retroactive. Quite the foresight, Lin thinks. Then she thinks what inventions and foresights have been made in the intervening years. She veers slightly, head going light. She shakes it off quickly, forcing a release of hormones to focus. Rigel’s voice suddenly comes over the comms, crisp.

Looks like everything is mostly intact. Joan, are you receiving vid? Good. Anything loose will have gone to suck, but I don’t think the control panels are damaged. Hotham, can you get her started?

Lin takes it all on board and keeps wandering through the ship. It’s like being under water, like being in training all those years ago. Seawood-esque wires wave at her as she moves slowly through, her grav boots operating in time with her movements.

OK Jay, close down the hatch. Joan, we’ve done a sweep and there doesn’t appear to be any hull breaches. We’re closing the doors and going to boot her.

Lin snaps out of her dreaming. Looks around. She’s in the cryo-chamber.

***

In a pit of snakes, squirming and wriggling, Walcot drags himself up. The snakes fall away, their bodies leaving his in relief. Not tied back by gravity, he shoots towards the sky. A horrific face appears, all teeth and pale skin, and Walcot feels a sudden terror in his stomach he hasn’t felt in a very long time. The thing opens its mouth and…

Gas jets into his face. He tries to scream but a tube is shoved down his throat. He gags, hands floundering to get a grip on the tube. He pulls it out, vomiting up whatever liquid lingered is his esophagus. The gas is still jetting into his face. He tries to push past it but is met by glass. Something wells up inside him.

Walcot screams. He screams and it feels like he is forcing his insides out his mouth. He feels his mind leave him, leaving only a screaming husk. But only for a moment.

The glass disappears as if magically dispersed. Something lets his feet go. Walcot falls face first, still screaming. But he doesn’t hit anything. Instead he just floats out. He stops, shocked. Then he tries to breath again.

A rancid and metallic taste assaults him, but no air.

ohfucktheresnoatmosphereFUCK

He squeezes his eyes shut, convulses, and wishes he was back in the pit of snakes.

***

Lin stares at the man writhing in front of her. He’s suspended in midair, his body wriggling in a ball. Her fingers twitch at her side. She almost takes a step back. Instead she rushes at the man as fast as her grav boots allow, oxygenator in hand. She screams into her vox.

GET IN HERE, TO ME!

Lin’s body takes over from her mind, like she’s left herself. Reaching for the man, she tries to pull his limbs apart so she can wrestle the oxygenator on to his face. The power might be back on but the air is going to take a little while, if there even is air left. Lights flicker like a nightmare. Forcing her suited arm between the man’s limbs, Lin finally manages to get the rebreather over his mouth. She switches her vox to external, hoping there’s enough reclaimed atmosphere by now to carry her voice.

‘BREATHE.’

Part 3

Now Is the Time

I need to get a lot off my chest. I might be Australian, but the US election affects us, and Australian interest has been high. The thing is though, I work in a white female dominated industry, one that is also historically ‘progressive’ in its views. My family is progressive; my friends are progressive. No one I know even understands what alt-right or Neoreaction means. Heck, they still think conservatives and progressives are fundamentally different. So the day of the US election 2016 felt a literal surreal.

I’ve had money on Trump winning since Brexit. Once he won the primary and the Brexit vote came in, my confidence in a Trump victory went up to about 80%. That’s good enough for a bet. Everything I saw since then gave more and more support to this theory. And now that it actually fucking happened, that proves my stance retrospectively. It proves the liberal establishment is so far its own arse, it can see daylight again, and mistakes it for salvation. It proves that politcal correctness is despised, especially poignant given the furor around Jordan Peterson. It proves we prefer a real person over a fake politician (sorry, oxymoron, just politician). It also proves that the time is ripe for a true reactionary movement.

Of course, how this would come about is difficult to determine. Do we actually try and push for the removal of democracy, replacing it with a cryptomonarchy, possibly King Trump given the line of succession is clear? Do we just try and make small changes from within now that the Republicans hold all the power? This will probably involve a big push with the Sailer Strategy. What about in Australia, where do we go now? Who will be our King? There’s a lot to discuss.

I’m not completely positive. Yes, it looks like Russian and Asian tensions may have been eased already, at least from the early congratulations their leaders have expressed. But overall I think it is much more likely that Trump will just be an average President and not much will get done. Of course, anything positive he does do will make him an excellent President, in the same way that the hope around Obama’s election resulted in…well, the Obama Presidency. The more likely event is that some bad stuff happens, and Trump gets the blame. He might only be a one-termer (but let’s not forget that he hasn’t been stumped yet). Now the American Republicans actually have a mandate, they better fucking do something with it. I do think there is a high chance the conservatives will squander it, unless Trump (very possible) acts like a King and just gets shit done. His 100 day plan is clear and succinct, perhaps a little ambitious. But he needs strong help. Peter Thiel and Elon Musk must be brought in. Scott Adams wouldn’t hurt to have around either.

But enough about what should or could happen, I want to talk about the progressive response.

What a Time to Be Alive

I started the day in Australia waking up to the usual tirade of establishment media basically handing Clinton the presidency. It was a done deal. Over before it had begun. I have to admit, I felt a weight in my stomach.

Months ago I had actually made a $150 bet with a woman in my office that Trump would win. The day started with everyone laughing at me, asking if I was worried. I stayed silent, shrugged. ‘We’ll see,’ I said.

Then the counting started.

We had a business lunch with two American clients (female). There was about 5 staff members including me (the rest all female). The Americans were busily checking updates (they come from New York/Maine) and receiving text messages from their friends and family (one of the women received a text from her son: ‘WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON?’). Of course conversation turned to politics. And it was not pleasant.

First, as the only white male at the table, the amount of times the ongoing result was blamed on ‘white males’ was quite shocking. Imagine blaming crime on black people with a black person at the dinner table. My God. Maybe they just gave me a pass because I’m young, so surely I’m progressive. And that was another theme, the fact that we were now, at that very moment, regressing (hate to break it to you but…). ‘All this progress we have made will disappear.’ What fucking progress? More racial division under Obama? A flimsily lowered unemployment rate? Growing inequality? What FUCKING progress? All these comments flying across the table, and all I could do was nod as a very strange feeling of euphoria grew in my stomach as the result cemented itself in the history books.

The second unpleasant topic was dichotomically, of course, women. I mean that these women around me all but admitted that the only reason to vote for Hillary was because she had a vagina. And rather than admit to their own bias, they used this ‘fact’ to put the blame on misogyny. To my face patriarchy and ingrained misogyny were given as the only reasons people (sorry, white males, not people) voted for Trump. When people talk about projecting, this is what they mean. Here you have liberal white females who appear to only be voting for Hillary because she would be the first female President (and they’ve seen her face before) putting all the ‘blame’ of Trump’s victory on misogyny. Sweet mother of God, I could not believe I was witnessing this.

And the day after the victory the tirade continues. Most shocking of all, as I Left for work this morning, I passed a school child, a white male aged around 10 or so. I heard the words ‘uneducated white male’. In that moment I knew that this level of depraved thinking is deeply embedded in the education system. People have been shamed into hating themselves. Progressiveness runs deep.

Now, remember that woman at work I made a bet with? So I walk into the weekly sales meeting, grinning as I walk up to her. No jovial remarks like yesterday. No gentle prodding. She was enraged. She called me an ‘evil man’. See, apparently she managed to conflate my bet with support (I wouldn’t say I support Trump because of his policies, but preference is support). Apparently I’d said some remarks while making the bet as we had been a little tipsy. She said, verbatim, ‘You called her “A something something something woman.”‘ Now, I don’t recall saying anything in particular (and clearly she couldn’t bring specifics to her argument either) but criticizing Hillary is clearly blasphemy. She threatened – literally threatened – to expose my blasphemy to the room. I was shaken, shocked at her vitriol. Thankfully I managed to deny it and was backed up by some other women who were present. Wearing a mask can be hard.

And that’s just it, the responses have been superb. Students rioting, crying on social media, celebrities flipping out. I walked into the office and everyone was discussing it, saying how they just couldn’t believe it and no one had seen it coming. I raised my hand and demurred. ‘Some people did.’ I have never seen such mass delusion and willful ignorance combined with, somehow, a sense of smugness.

Another Brick in the Road

Neoreaction is a journey for me. I am getting there. Slowly my eyes are opening. The absolute, complete disdain these people have against Trump supporters can not be classified as anything other than insane, or perhaps delusional. Delusions of grandeur. Delusions of self-righteousness. It was all there for me to see. It was there for the world to see as the pollsters and media shills suddenly had all their projections reversed when faced with reality. I am currently reading all of Moldbug, and this is exactly what he talks about. It is absolutely mesmerising to read something from 2008 while the ‘projections’ roll-out before my very eyes. It is, quite simply, like witnessing a miracle. And that’s not even considering the will of Kek.

What needs to happen now is a serious movement. In the UK, the US and Australia (and where all free thinking people reside). Embrace the swell and ride the wave to the shore of glory. If you live in Sydney and are reactionary in thought, I would love to meet and discuss where we can go from here.

I’m sure there will be much more dissection of the results to come. All I can say to any progressives reading this: too late, mother fuckers.