Further update: I think the problem is now fixed, and this post is open for comments.
Critique of the Culture of Kevin MacDonald
by Takuan Seiyo
“The first time I became aware of leftist Jews was when, as a reporter for The Daily Cardinal, the student newspaper, at the University of Wisconsin, I was assigned to cover a meeting of the Committee Against the War in Vietnam. This was around 1965” — reminisced the evolutionary psychologist Kevin MacDonald in “Memories Of Madison — My Life In The New Left”.
Professor MacDonald has won fame and a following on the far right for having “explained the Jews,” particularly in his book The Culture of Critique (pdf). And one has to respect him for the courage and sheer data doggedness with which he has taken on in depth an important and shunned subject — the leftist tilt of the Jewish ethny and its negative effect on Gentile societies.
Anyone who in the pursuit of truth chooses to become a prime target of lefto-lunatic money scammers like Southern Poverty Law Center has my respect. But I am dismayed that MacDonald, an academic who ought to know better, has constructed a revealing if partisan typology and then treated it as though it’s an explanatory taxonomy.
The first time I became aware of leftist Jews was when, in 1956, I looked up from my lead soldiers’ formation on the kitchen floor and saw my Jewish father’s 2nd (and only surviving) cousin enter our assigned apartment in commie Warsaw, pushing a wicker pram.
“Do you want these?” he asked. Under the baby blanket, the deep cart was filled to the brim with the combined works of Marx, Engels and Lenin in Polish, Russian and German. Nikita Khrushchev had just made a speech denouncing Stalin and shattering the utopian castle that my “uncle” and millions like him in the European intelligentsia had built in their heads, none more so than the Jews.
Since then, born Catholic and happily acculturated in Slav society but half-Jew of the wandering kind myself, I have come to know perhaps 300 Jews in ten countries over half a century well enough to have talked life or politics. To this, I’d have to add personal observations of Jewish strangers and analysis of media content created by Jews, the analysis of media content being briefly my academic specialty and its creation becoming, eventually, my profession.
In the fourteen years I spent at three universities in the 60s/70s I acquired a store of memories that resembles Kevin MacDonald’s, if at a greater distance from the radical Jewish milieu. I too perceived the radical politics, feelings of separateness and alienation, attitude of moral and intellectual superiority, hostility to Western cultural institutions, ethnic paranoia and bunker mentality, disdain for capitalism, generic tendency to impute and then combat perceived racism and fascism, disputatiousness and intellectual sophistry, negative attitudes toward Christianity, positive attitudes toward psychoanalysis and Marxism. I too had charismatic Jewish professors with a leftist view of European and American history.
Despite my long exercise in personal ethnography among Jews, including the long period among their — in my eyes — preponderantly disgusting stratum in the American social sciences academia, I have not met a single Jew who was motivated by the ethno-biological red-of-tooth-and-claw impulses it has become Dr. MacDonald’s life mission to ascribe to the Jews as a whole. Moreover, except for perhaps one-third of those in academia, mass media and the law, none of the Jews I have met had any of the corrosive leftist rancor described in “Madison,” while still being almost uniformly liberal.
In “Memories Of Madison — My Life In The New Left” MacDonald continues his grand project of assembling true facts or experiences, and then illuminating them with a jaundiced light. To start, he repeatedly takes universal phenomena or traits common to all people, or to a social or occupational class, and ascribes them to Jews, as Jews. He writes, for instance, of the “tendency for Jewish intellectual movements to become centered around highly charismatic Jewish figures,” as if there were non-Jewish intellectual movements not so centered, whoever the charismatic figure.
MacDonald’s description of the Jewish mental baggage at Madison includes “talking about movies a lot, especially European movies by directors like Ingmar Bergman and Francois Truffaut,” and about historically important (and) Jewish leftists. Also, disdain for “Christian” prudishness and obsession with “intellectually intricate and subversive theories like “ Marcuse’s synthesis of Marx and Freud.”
Why, one could think that MacDonald describes the University of Bologna or a student café in Dusseldorf or Helsinki — in the 1960s or now. Hardly any Jews there. MacDonald’s Jew screamers are Bernardo Bertolluci’s gentile dreamers in an eponymous film about French students in the 60s. Not a single Jew behind or in front of the camera in that film.
When he mentions important Jewish leftists like Leon Trotsky, Rosa Luxemburg and Herbert Marcuse, MacDonald fails to mention that these are not the heroes of Jews, or even just of Jewish radicals, but of the entire continental European intelligentsia.
Red Rosa, for instance, has bronze statues and a large square in Berlin named after her. The Rosa Luxemburg Foundation, with funding from the Federal Republic of Germany is “instigating, promoting and supporting” socialist political education worldwide, creating “International Neoliberal Networks,” organizing 2,000 “educational” events per year with 50,000 participants in Germany alone, publishing in several languages, and operating socialist action centers in 11 cities worldwide.
MacDonald evokes the “ingroup bunker mentality” as “a fundamental characteristic of Jewish society.” So it was, and perhaps still is among many older Jews. But to fail to limn why it’s so for exogenous and millennia-long reasons, and how it parallels the same mentality in other middleman minorities, can only be seen as a telling omission. This is even more bizarre when Thomas Sowell has already done the intellectual heavy lifting, e.g. here.
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Prof. MacDonald is correct in linking the rise of multiculturalism and massive non-white immigration to the activism of organized Jewry. Reading demographic dissolutionist Jewish statements like HIAS’s Progress by Pesach — and there is something in that category every week from ADL, AJC, HIAS and from crypto-Jewish organizations like ACLU and SLPC — is a revolting experience.
Moreover, MacDonald performs a valuable service here and elsewhere in exposing the long-standing pattern of Jewish activism on behalf of non-white immigration, and even more aggressive activism on behalf of resident and not necessarily deserving non-whites. The latter pattern is richly veined and old — from W. E. B. DuBois as the only black man on the executive board of Arthur Springarn’s NAACP, to Martin Luther King’s consiglieri, Stanley Levinson, to Barack Obama’s troika of consigliere, dead (Saul Alinsky) and alive (David Axelrod and Rahm Emanuel).
But MacDonald spoils whatever salutary effects such showing might have by turning it into a Jew-baiting campaign, as though his PhD, along with David Duke’s, were from Interregional Academy of Personnel Management rather than from a reputable American university.
The explanation of Jewish radicalism one is treated to — and I am still staying with “Madison” — is that “Jews emerged from the ghetto with hostility toward the culture around them” and “Jewish hostility toward the culture of non-Jews has been a constant threat throughout Jewish history.” Has this hostility arisen by immaculate conception?
From the time the Jews arrived in chains and en masse in Rome, the one constant in Jewish history has been persecution, much of it of the cruelest and most murderous kind, a short review of which may be found here. The gradual genocide has brought down the European Jewish population from an estimated 4 million in the 1st century to less than 100,000 by the 16th. Such a genocidal constriction of the Jews’ gene pool takes its biological toll to this day, e.g. in the various Jewish genetic illnesses.
But MacDonald’s task is not merely to falsely highlight the unwarranted nature of Jewish hostility. “It’s about displacement and domination.” And the proof he adduces is how former denizens of Russo-Ukrainian shtetls became a part of the dominant Bolshevik elite — able to actually carry out in the USSR the fantasies [of] the New Left Jewish radicals in the US — i.e., the “humiliation, dispossession, imprisonment or execution of the oppressors.”
In “Stalin’s Willing Executioners” that MacDonald’ links in the preceding quote, he recounts truthfully many of the blood-chilling actions of the Jewish Bolshevik nomenklatura. But then he illuminates them in a deliberately evil light by omitting any reference to what Jews had suffered under the tsars, for how long and how frequently.
A mention of just 50 years of Russian history prior to 1917 would have to include at the least the tremendous, fascist-style oppression under Alexander II, Alexander III and Nicholas II and the royals’ rabid anti-Semitism, the many state-sanctioned mass murders (i.e. “pogroms”) of Jews, arbitrary deportations and destructions of Jewish communities, the Okhrana and the Black Hundred, the blood-libel Beilis trial and the forgery of the Protocol of the Elders of Zion, the super anti-Semitic and tsar-sponsored Union of the Russian People, the prominent roles of Jew-haters like Konstantin Pobedonostsev [read Wikipedia entry here], restrictions on habitation, education and access to the professions, and a prevailing atmosphere of hatred and disdain for Jews in all institutions of tsarist Russia except only the nascent communist conspiracy.
But mentioning that, though it would not excuse the Jewish Bolsheviks’ retaliatory atrocities, would put a dent in the MacDonald theory of the self-propelled evil evolutionary Jew. Hence no mention.
To put it succinctly, a half-truth told by a professional interpreter of facts is a purposeful lie. And so MacDonald (in “Madison”) carries on about the Jewish “machinery of mass murder and oppression” in the USSR, with the parallel of the New Jew Left bent on a “similar displacement of white elites” in America. But the latter is as much anti-Semitic libel as the former is based on a telling omission.
Lawrence Auster had this to say about Prof. MacDonald’s curious interpretation of Russian history:
It is essential to distinguish between anti-Semitic attacks on Jews and legitimate, rational criticisms of Jews. [snip] To portray Jews as the source of all ills [snip] is anti-Semitism. For example, to say that Jews as Jews are “hostile” to our culture and have organized themselves in a campaign to destroy it, is anti-Semitism. What’s wrong with anti-Semitism is, first, that it’s false, and, second, that the flaw can’t be corrected. If Jews, who have been a part of European civilization since before the time of Christ, are the source of all evil in our civilization, there is nothing for them to do but die.
MacDonald’s animus spills over onto the subject of Israel, as is often the case with people who dislike American Jews for valid reasons, Israel for invalid reasons, and who have a larger anti-Semitic gestalt underlying both. Mac Donald goads a Jewish lefto-lunatic like Mark Rudd to oppose “Zionism and its influence in the US,” equates Zionism with racism and evokes “the racial Zionist movement that dominates the politics of Israel today.” But then he challenges Rudd to become active in “the cause of reversing the effects of four decades of non-white immigration” to the United States.
So, pining for a white racial groundswell in the United States, MacDonald condemns “Jewish ethnic chauvinism in Israel” while imputing to Jews — correctly — the same hypocrisy he has, except in reverse. Geert Wilders said this relative to white “defenders of the West” who simultaneously vituperate Israel and Zionism: “It is not that the West has a stake in Israel. It is Israel.”
And pace MacDonald, it’s leftist Israeli and Anglophonic Jews, and ultra-religious Jews who are nowadays the most pernicious foes of Zionism.
Having far less interest in Jewish apologetics than Prof. MacDonald has in Jewish philippics, I have read only his shorter pieces and visited his website occasionally, but have not read his books. The former pretty much precludes the latter. I find MacDonald’s Moses-meet-Shylock-meet-Darwin hypothesis to be an expression of his own anti-Semitism and therefore unhelpful either for understanding the phenomenon of Jewish leftism or for countering it properly.
A critic I find consistently perceptive and honest, John Derbyshire, has delved deeper into the MacDonald oeuvre and has come up with rather similar conclusions. Lawrence Auster, another thinker of honest opinions and frequent critic of Jewish liberalism has commented on MacDonald too.
To see the levels of malice and brain-dead stupidity that Dr. MacDonald’s intellectual crocheting leads to, one could peruse the many neo-Nazi websites whose chatrooms throb with epiphanic exclamations of the final light of truth shed on Jew perfidy by the Jewgroup evolutionary theorist from Long Beach.
I will skip over the more moronic ones like Vanguard News Network whose official motto is “No Jews. Just Right” or Storm Front whose unofficial motto is “Hitler was right.” The higher-hanging fruit is the Jew-is-an-evolutionary-parasite website Majorityrights.com, where disquisitions like this go on for yards of scrolling, replete with Der Stürmer-type cartoons and Sturmführer-type perorations on the hyena nature of the Jew.
But before one dismisses Kevin MacDonald and his spawn, the eye hits a comment like this by, uhm, Jews Hate Whites [ibid.] “Jew Robert Reich calls for discrimination against white males in the coming economic stimulus even though white males are the majority of the workforce”
Jews Hate Whites may be an idiot, but his anger is justifiable. And when one contemplates the political imprint of America’s Jews in the last 100 years, from Max Shachtman to Noam Chomsky, from the Jewish Socialist League of America in the 30’s to the Jewish Alliance for Law and Social Action in the 90s, from Saul Alinsky to the Rosenbergs, from Abbie Hoffman to George Soros, from Ruth Bader Ginsburg to Ramona Ripston to the current crop of Jewish politicians in Congress and machers in the White House, one begins to worry less about the veracity of the MacDonald hypothesis and more because of the veracity of his facts.
There is hardly any doubt that Jews have so enriched the European civilization and its American outpost, and in so many ways, that an analysis that dwells only on the debit column of the ledger, as MacDonald’s does, is skewed. Moreover, when this analysis ascribes a truly diabolical motive to that debit, and ignores other viable explanations, it’s not just a troubling bias but a deplorable falsification.
Nevertheless, it seems to me that for the last 50 years, the American Jewish community, particularly through its organized expression, has been drawing down its credit through massive entries on the debit side, just as American blacks have since the 60s. I no longer care how many Jewish doctors save lives, Jewish scientists discover new particles and Jewish violinists provide transporting experiences, when Jews are at the spearhead of every corrosive movement turning the United States into a slipshod third world Babel of the equally ignorant yahoos brimming with self-esteem but disdaining whitey, his Constitution and his Shakespeare.
Alas, careful observation might point to a Jewish pathology stranger even than the MacDonald biological reductionist theory, if without the malignancy MacDonald attributes. Actually, it could be labeled as “much too much of a good thing” or, in the Oriental view of things, “yin toxicity,” or maybe “slow-motion hara kiri.”
The “good thing” stems from what Thomas Cahill described in The Gifts of the Jews: How a Tribe of Desert Nomads Changed the Way Everyone Thinks and Feels. It’s the momentous and singular Biblical ideas of the equality and dignity of each individual, universal moral obligations, and great value placed on peace and justice. This, coupled with the Jewish arch-tradition of tikun olam, repairing the world.
Extreme Jewish leftism in the past had partial motivations of resentment and vengeance toward the social classes that had harmed and despised Jews. It represented as well class interests, as most Jews were poor and deprived of opportunity. But since the 1950s, it’s a different story.
Liberalism, which is the true religion of most Jews, is the antithesis of an evolutionary mechanism for survival and dominance. Rather, it’s the application of various political and economic means to establish “peace, social justice and universal brotherhood” on earth, fueled by the best intentions and by the worst disregard for how reality works. Contrary to MacDonald, the Jewish project is not to evolutionize the Israelite but to immanentize the eschaton.
Reality never fails to punish those who snub her, including whole societies built on liberal delusions. The Jewish weight applied on the side of open borders and amnesty, affirmative action and endless coddling of undeserving minorities, legal activism, pacifism and world government, punitive taxation and income redistribution, is harmful, first and foremost, to the Jews themselves, though the rest of us will succumb after the coal mine canaries.
It’s Jews whose influence will wane in direct proportion to the ratio of non-whites and Muslims in the American population and political elite. It’s Israel that will lose out the more American politicians distance themselves from Israel for the sake of the colored plurality’s votes. It’s Jewish money that’s being confiscated through high taxes and redistributed to people who don’t like Jews. It’s Jewish university applicants who are rejected for the sake of admitting black and brown applicants with two-thirds the IQ and two-thirtieths the future potential. It’s Jewish lives and property that are increasingly in jeopardy due to the Jewish-endorsed influx of criminal illegal aliens, Jewish “anti-racist” judicial activism, and the Jews’ antipathy to the Second Amendment and to freedom over equality.
Chandra Levy, murdered by an illegal alien from El Salvador in 2001, was Jewish. Adrienne Levine, aka Adrienne Shelly, the actress who was murdered by an illegal alien from Ecuador in 2006, was Jewish. David Rosenbaum, a veteran journalist who was beaten with a metal pipe by black robbers in 2006 and died from his injuries due to the incompetence of Washington’s minority-stuffed public services, was Jewish. Alan Senitt, who had his throat slashed and his companion sexually assaulted by black recidivist criminals in 2006, was Jewish. Jewish liberal activist too.
It was an Egyptian immigrant who shot up the El-Al Airlines terminal in Los Angeles in 2002. It was a Pakistani immigrant who shot up the Seattle Jewish Federation in 2006. It was an Arab neighbor who cut the throat of and mutilated Sébastien Selam, a 23-year old Jewish DJ in Paris, in 2003. It was a gang of African immigrants who kidnapped, tortured and killed the 23-year-old and Jewish Ilan Halimi in a Paris suburb, in 2006. It was the British-born son of Pakistani immigrants, Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh, who decapitated Daniel Pearl in 2002.
Yet the Jewish love affair with Babel through unrestricted immigration continues, in the US just as in Europe. And by misinterpreting as evolutionary clawing the grand and suicidal delusion, the lunacy that lies beneath the harmful political activism of Jews, MacDonald misses its connection to the harmful political activism of Christians as well.
The American Roman Catholic Church engages in a Hispanization scheme on a scale undreamed of by the most committed apparatchiks of the Hispanic section of ADL — ostensibly an organization existing to combat anti-Semitic defamation. The scale of the subversion in just one diocese, Cardinal Mahony’s Los Angeles, may be glimpsed here and here. It’s no different in any other American city, e.g. Chicago or Washington. And the activism is not just on immigration issues, what with Catholic phenomena such as Dorothy Day’s Catholic Worker Movement or Father Pfleger’s antics in Chicago.
To walk into a random Protestant church in an American city — an exercise I have performed a hundred times — is to walk into a branch office of the Swedish Social Democratic Party — a name that serves as a garnish of parsley on top of a thick Socialist slab slathered with a cultural-Marxist sauce. The notices on the bulletin board, the literature on display, the sermons — I am not aware of anything in Eastern Europe during the height of communist rule that was so suicidally nation-dissolving, white-ethny demonizing, and Western heritage destroying
And it’s not only at the base of the pyramid, or on its left side. To read George W. Bush’s (or John McCain’s) paeans to the Hispanization of the United States, his homilies to Hispanic family values, his speeches on the merits of immigration amnesty and the related home downpayment amnesty, is to experience nausea. It’s not coincidental that Bush is himself a committed Christian, and his Big Government Proposition-Nation ideology was poured into templates prepared by equally deluded Christian hands like Michael Gerson.
It’s useful and legitimate to isolate Jewish leftism and cultural Marxism, to assemble relevant facts and discuss their characteristics and harmful consequences. But it can’t be done reliably by people who testify for the defense in Holocaust deniers’ trials (pdf), and then deny the denial. It cannot be done by people who ascribe a collective malignancy to others, but are themselves so tainted by a malignancy that they view all of Western history with shades fashioned to block all light frequencies but the narrow band of cherchez le juif.
And this cannot be mitigated by the recognition that Prof. MacDonald’s chief enemies, the ADL, SPLC et al. are themselves deluded, defamatory, meretricious and repulsive.
America is in a situation so dire, in so many ways, that it can no longer afford the lying leatherette upholstery on its aging hemicuda bought with money borrowed or printed wantonly. It’s time, among others, to give the finger of derision to the R-taboo, to stop the evasive noise about “divisiveness” and to highlight that “toleration” is very far in meaning from “celebration.”
As far as the Jewish community is concerned, this means that the price of utopian social lunacy is already so great, and the trajectory visible from now to the conceivable future so disastrous, that the most-humming of all the motors driving the country to the ruins of dystopia cannot but become the object of wide antipathy.
There isn’t a day that I don’t hear someone I know as cultivated and reasonable, Gentile and Jew alike, express bitter frustration with the Jewish community because of its leftist-multicultural thrust and the damage it’s doing to America. If the Jewish community won’t wake up to criticism from friendly parties, it will eventually face criticism from the growing number of unfriendly parties.
It’s not gratuitous to mention that America is now treading the same economic path where Weimar Republic once trod. Jews were the most prominent in the left’s leadership in Weimar too, with sorry consequences. Maybe a beacon of truth shined on all that can do some good both for America and for its Jews.
Among the growing number of genuinely conservative and race-honest Jewish-Americans whose voices are worth listening to are names like Mark Levin, Michael Levin, Paul Gottfried, Michael Hart, Lawrence Auster, Dan Stein, Ilana Mercer, Julia Gorin, Nicholas Stix and others. Perhaps from them and others like them will come the impetus that can turn the left-tilting rudder of the multiculti ship of America’s Jewry.