Remembering Lawrence Auster

Chris Roberts, American Renaissance, March 29, 2017

His insights should be remembered by everyone who cares about whites today.
Lawrence Auster

Lawrence Auster

Four years ago today, Lawrence Auster died. Though newcomers to the world of racial dissidence may have never heard of him, from the 1990s until his death, he was a key character in the small resistance to egalitarianism that, in his time, seemed doomed to utter failure. He was a speaker at the first American Renaissance conference, and maintained a prolific blog, “View from the Right,” that influenced most every major dissident writer today, AmRen regulars Greg Hood and Paul Kersey among them.

I never met him, much less knew him, so I will let his writing speak for itself. Below are some of his greatest insights.


The Path to National Suicide:

“The very manner in which the issue is framed—as a matter of equal rights and the blessings of diversity on one side, versus “racism” on the other—tends to cut off all rational discourse on the subject. One can only wonder what would happen if the proponents of open immigration allowed the issue to be discussed, not as a moralistic dichotomy, but in terms of its real consequences. Instead of saying: “We believe in the equal and unlimited right of all people to immigrate to the U.S. and enrich our land with their diversity,” what if they said: “We believe in an immigration policy which must result in a staggering increase in our population, a revolution in our culture and way of life, and the gradual submergence of our current population by Hispanic and Caribbean and Asian peoples.” Such frankness would open up an honest debate between those who favor a radical change in America’s ethnic and cultural identity and those who think this nation should preserve its way of life and its predominant, European-American character. That is the actual choice—as distinct from the theoretical choice between “equality” and “racism”—that our nation faces.”

* * *

The Second Mexican American War:”

The Mexican invasion of the United States began decades ago as a spontaneous migration of ordinary Mexicans into the U.S. seeking economic opportunities. It has morphed into a campaign to occupy and gain power over our country—a project encouraged, abetted, and organized by the Mexican state and supported by the leading elements of Mexican society.

It is, in other words, war. War does not have to consist of armed conflict. War can consist of any hostile course of action undertaken by one country to weaken, harm, and dominate another country. Mexico is waging war on the U.S. through mass immigration illegal and legal, through the assertion of Mexican national claims over the U.S., and through the subversion of its laws and sovereignty, all having the common end of bringing the southwestern part of the U.S. under the control of the expanding Mexican nation, and of increasing Mexico’s political and cultural influence over the U.S. as a whole.

* * *

Wake Up, Conservatives! Stopping Amnesty Is Not Going to Save America!

Democrats will take us over the cliff at 90 miles an hour. Republicans stay within the speed limit, but they will still take us over the cliff. That is the single most succinct account of modern politics. Now apply the same idea to immigration. Illegal immigration will take us over the cliff at 90 miles an hour. Legal immigration stays within the speed limit, but it will still take us over the cliff. Yet the energy of conservatives is focused almost exclusively on illegal immigration, and if you try to bring up legal immigration, you’re told, with annoyance, that the country is not ready to deal with that issue, we must focus only on illegal. And it’s true that there would not have been the hundreds of thousands of callers to Congress stopping the immigration bill in 2007, if the issue had been legal immigration. People are able to grasp violations of law—it doesn’t make them “racist” to oppose violations of law. But to oppose turning our country into a Hispanic country, well, that seems racist, or at least it’s something they don’t feel comfortable discussing.

When it comes to immigration and national survival, race is the supreme issue, the issue on which all others hang. On one side, our country is steadily being changed into a different country by the immigration of people of different race. On the other side, we are letting this happen because, controlled by liberalism, we are morally incapable of saying that we should not allow our country to be re-populated and transformed into a different country by people of other races. So: racially diverse mass immigration is undoing us, and our irrational, immoral, and cowardly fear of being “racist” makes us incapable of stopping that racially diverse mass immigration.

It all comes down to race. You may not want to think about race, but race is thinking about you.

* * *

The Law of Minority-Majority Relations:”

To put the event in perspective, here is an addendum to Auster’s First Law of Majority-Minority Relations in Liberal Society:

“The worse blacks behave (in this case the total failure of the black-run government of New Orleans to take the absolutely necessary steps to prepare for and respond to the disaster [Hurricane Katrina]), the more this black failure must be blamed on white racism.”

Actually, what I’m calling an addendum to Auster’s first law precedes it. I think it was Jared Taylor who first (or at least most strongly) impressed me with the fact that black failure is blamed on white racism. Auster’s first law is a variation on that. It says that the worse any designated minority or alien group behaves in a liberal society, the more we are obligated to tell politically correct lies about that group. It’s a logical extension of the inversion of ordinary moral thinking that is implied in Taylor’s insight. Under ordinary morality, the worse a group behaves, the more it is condemned. But under liberalism, the worse a (minority) group behaves, the more it is protected and even praised. A corollary of the first law is that the worse the behavior of any designated minority, the more forbidden that truth becomes, and the more racist it is to speak it.

* * *

My Views on Race and Intelligence:”

Summing up

The insights that came to me on this personal journey of discovery accumulated through several distinct stages.

First I learned that blacks on average score much less well on achievement tests, which explained why there were so few blacks in intellectual professions, but I didn’t associate these facts with a black deficit in “intelligence” as such.

Then that pioneer Michael Levin came along and tactlessly used the forbidden word “intelligence” to describe the quality in which blacks differ from whites. I was disturbed by this, wishing he would speak of a “difference in test-taking ability” rather than of a difference in intelligence. Yet at the same time I seemed to recognize that intelligence was, in fact, the issue at hand.

Then I came to understand that the quality measured by intelligence tests is something real, as proved by the fact that the results of IQ tests performed in childhood correlate highly with achievement in later life.

At this point, however, I still accepted the conventional view that group deficits in intelligence, even if real, were to a large degree determined by inferior cultural circumstances, and therefore could be eliminated by improvements in behavioral standards, socio-economic status, home environment, and so on. My inchoate belief in environmentalism was decisively refuted by the Scarr-Weinberg study showing that black children raised from infancy by white middle-class parents still were about 15 IQ points behind whites. This proved that IQ was determined by heredity, not culture.

But even if IQ itself was not cultural but genetic, there was the objection that the IQ tests themselves were culturally biased. This was thrown out by the discovery that blacks did worse in questions involving pure cognitive ability than in questions using white cultural references.

Then there was the growing awareness of the markedly different styles of thought between the races including blacks’ much greater suggestibility and reliance on rhetoric and emotional manipulation; their relative lack of ability to think in objective, cause-and-effect terms, their noticeably lesser orientation toward objective things and ideas outside the self; and their demonstrably lesser orientation toward the common political good and a moral and stable social order. There was, finally, the pronounced orientation of many blacks toward paranoid conspiracy theories, their tendency to see every issue in terms of race and to blame all their problems on whites.

And finally, drawing all these thoughts together into a new paradigm, there was the discovery of the “optical illusion” of racial sameness. This experience convinced me that the intellectual differences between blacks and whites are both substantive and qualitative—in short, that there are intrinsic racial differences in civilizational abilities.

* * *

Why the Truth About Black Dysfunction Is So Important:”

Why do I focus so relentlessly on these endlessly repeated stories of the massive cover-up, followed by the massive exposure, of black criminality and black failure—which is, we should point out, failure by white standards? Beyond its immediate interest and obvious importance, the truthful communication about black dysfunction and violence also serves the larger purpose of this website, which is nothing less than to save the American nation.

In my view, the greatest single factor driving whites to national suicide is their false guilt over black inferiority. Because whites believe—as modern liberalism has taught them to believe—that all groups have equal inherent abilities, they also believe that the actual inferiority of blacks in almost every area of accomplishment and behavior must be caused by something bad that the whites are invidiously doing to blacks, or by something good that whites are selfishly refusing to do for blacks. However expressed, it all comes down to the idea that black failure is caused by white racism—the transcendent sin of the modern world. And because black inferiority continues, and is even getting worse, the conclusion is that white racism is continuing, and is even getting worse.

The final result of this woefully mistaken thought process is the paralyzing racial guilt which makes whites feel that they have no right to defend and preserve their civilization, no right to defend and preserve themselves, but that they must instead self-sacrificially open themselves to and empower, not only blacks, but all nonwhites. This self-sacrifice takes numerous forms, including denial of the truth of black anti-white violence, denial of the tyrannical and murderous reality of Islam, and unquestioning acceptance of the mass Third-World immigration that is steadily turning America into a non-European country in which whites and their civilization will be steadily weakened, dispossessed, and destroyed. Therefore, as I began saying in the mid 1990s, if whites could see the truth that blacks’ lesser intelligence and other lesser civilizational abilities are not whites’ fault but are inherent in blacks themselves, it could literally save the country, by freeing whites from their suicidal guilt.

* * *

Why is Affirmative Action Bad?

[W]e are dragging our society down by putting non-qualified people in various positions while making it impossible to discuss the truth about what we are doing. … [C]onservatives, to the extent that they criticize racial quotas or AA at all (which is hardly at all for some years now), criticize it for “the soft bigotry of low expectations,” i.e., for hurting blacks. Occasionally they criticize it for its injustice to whites, as in the Grutter suit against the University of Michigan. But they NEVER criticize AA for unjustly putting millions of people in positions for which they are unqualified—thus validating and spreading incompetence, harming the functionality of our institutions, and lowering the whole level of our society.

* * *

How Do I Like Thee, Trump? I’m Still Counting the Ways:” [This was written in 2011, mind you.]

Another welcome thing about Donald Trump is that he is bringing to the fore the question of Obama’s academic qualifications. Liberal Jerking Knee Bob Schieffer has called Trump a racist for it. By doubting Obama’s vaunted intelligence and by suggesting that he got into Columbia University and Harvard Law School via racial preferences, Trump, Schieffer avers, is questioning the intellectual abilities of blacks in general. But really, Trump is only saying, albeit somewhat crudely and without yet the facts to back it up in Obama’s case (“he had terrible grades”) what all sentient whites, and indeed all sentient non-blacks and non-Hispanics have reasonably thought, but not stated in public, for decades. When they do state it in public, they instantly lose their jobs and reputations. Being an iconoclastic real estate billionaire celebrity with a weird hairdo has its advantages. Hmm. Maybe I chose the wrong path in life.

Furthermore, if I remember correctly, Obama and his wife have in the past referred to themselves as “affirmative action babies.” Why is it ok for a nonwhite to say that he got where he is via minority preferences, but not ok for a white man to say it?

Answer: When a minority calls himself an affirmative action baby, he’s saying that AA is ok. He’s saying that AA is not giving advantages to less qualities nonwhites over more qualified whites (such as Barbara Grutter, rejected by the University of Michigan Law School); he’s saying that AA is helping minorities whose abilities are really the same as those whites who happen to be losing out. But of course this is a lie. And when a white person speaks of AA critically rather than approvingly, he is pointing to the truth about AA, which is that it gives advantages to significantly less qualified nonwhites over significantly better qualified whites. To speak or even hint at that undeniable truth is what liberals consider “racist.”

* * *

Another White Family Desolated:”

Here’s another white person, police officer Andrew Widman of Fort Myers, Florida, a father of three, murdered on a whim by one of the innumerable Negro savages whom we allow to roam about at liberty in our society…

Is it racist, i.e., is it morally wrong, to speak of “Negro savages who are roaming about at liberty in our society”? No …

Indeed, I am acting according to the Kantian categorical imperative, speaking the way I think everyone should speak. If our whole society began to declare plainly that predatory black savages are running loose among us and that this is totally unacceptable, then we would start to do something about it, and many innocent people, white and black, would be saved, and many families, white and black, would not be destroyed. But so long as the reality of this race-specific savagery is daintily covered up, society will remain passive and helpless, absorbing one black murder after another, forever.

Civilization is the opposite of savagery. Therefore part of what defines civilized people is that they oppose savagery and do not tolerate it. And to oppose it, they must speak truthfully about it. So let’s forget about the superficial contemporary “civility” that never calls unpleasant and dangerous things by their proper names, and so allows aliens, enemies, and savages to take over. Instead of practicing such “civility,” let us stand for civilization.

* * *

The Most Important Issue:”

When I criticize liberalism, I focus on a particular dimension of liberalism which I call modern liberalism—equality, non-discrimination, the delegitimization of larger entities such as cultures and nations (if they’re Western)—and these in fact are the aspects of liberalism that are dominant today. Liberalism as socialism and centralization of power is important, as we still see in the growing statism of Europe and America; liberalism as scientific/materialistic reductionism is important, as we see in our culture’s ongoing degradation of man. But the main thrust of liberalism, the main force destroying our culture at present, because it is the moral obligation that transcends all others and that has the strongest hold over the minds of contemporary people, is the very one I speak about: the idea that we must eliminate all discrimination. This is the highest and holiest precept of modern liberalism, extending from the UN Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination to Pope John Paul II’s message that the work of Christ is “liberation from all forms of discrimination, rejection, and marginalization.”

And that is NOT the aspect of liberalism that conservatives such as Ann Coulter ever focus on, is it? Because they themselves either agree with it or are afraid to question it. Even openly anti-Muslim U.S. commentators who talk belligerently about waging a war to crush much of the Muslim world, will not advocate an end to Muslim immigration into the West, because that would violate the principle of non-discrimination. It is the belief in non-discrimination that is killing us, and it is only the rejection of that belief that can save us.

By the way, the conservative acceptance of the principle of non-discrimination proves my oft-repeated observation that the overwhelming majority of conservatives today are really liberals. No matter how conservative you may be on a variety of issues, if you still adhere unswervingly to the ruling principle of liberalism, then it’s fair to say that you are a liberal.

* * *

The Unchanging Reality of Muslim Terror—So Long as Muslims Remain Among Us:”

We will have terrorist attacks and threats of terrorist attacks and inconvenient and humiliating security measures and the disruption of ordinary activities FOREVER, as long as Muslims are in the West in any significant numbers. The Muslim terrorists are part and parcel of the Muslim community. According to a survey reported in the Scotsman, 24 percent of Muslims in Britain (I never describe them as “British Muslims”) believe the July 2005 London bombings were justified. Imagine that. Not only do these Muslims in Britain support terrorism against Britain, they’re not afraid to say so openly to a pollster! The unchangeable fact is that wherever there is a sizable Muslim community there will be a very large number of terror supporters and therefore—inevitably—actual terrorists as well.

This is our future, FOREVER, unless we stop Muslim immigration and initiate a steady out-migration of Muslims from the West until their remaining numbers are a small fraction of what they are now and there are no true believers among the ones that remain. Travelers from Muslim countries must be tightly restricted as well. Muslims must be essentially locked up inside the Muslim lands, with only carefully screened individuals allowed into the non-Muslim world.

The enemy are among us, in America, in Britain, in the West, and will remain so until we remove them from the West and indeed from the entire non-Muslim world. As extreme as this sounds, it is a no-brainer. There is no other solution. All other responses to this problem add up to meaningless hand-wringing. The hand-wringing will go on FOREVER, along with the terrorist attacks and the threat of terrorist attacks, until we take the ONLY STEPS that can actually and permanently end the threat.

* * *

The Liberal Script:”

As I have often written, the liberal order articulates the world through a “script” in which there are three characters: the white liberal, who embodies the non-discriminatory virtue of the liberal regime; the white non-liberal, who discriminates against nonwhites and who must be crushed by the white liberal; and the nonwhite/non-Westerner, who either is discriminated against by the white non-liberal or is non-discriminatorily included by the white liberal. In the script, furthermore, only the white liberal and the white non-liberal are moral actors, with the first representing good and the second representing evil. The nonwhite/non-Westerner is not a moral actor, but is simply the passive recipient of the white liberal’s goodness or of the white non-liberal’s bigotry. The reason that the nonwhite/non-Westerner cannot be a moral actor is that his very function in the script is to be the recipient of either good non-discrimination or evil discrimination. If he were a moral actor, then his own actions would have to be judged; specifically, his bad actions would have to be judged. But to judge his bad actions would be to discriminate against him. And since the central purpose of liberalism is to eliminate all discriminatory treatment of nonwhites/non-Westerners, moral judgement of nonwhites/non-Westerners must also be eliminated. Therefore nonwhites/non-Westerners cannot be seen as responsible moral actors.

* * *

The Unprincipled Exception:”

Definition:

The unprincipled exception is a non-liberal value or assertion, not explicitly identified as non-liberal, that liberals use to escape the inconvenient, personally harmful, or suicidal consequences of their own liberalism without questioning liberalism itself.

Alternatively, the unprincipled exception is a non-liberal value or assertion, not explicitly identified as non-liberal, that conservatives use to slow the advance of liberalism or to challenge some aspect of liberalism without challenging liberalism itself.

Explanation:

Modern liberalism stands for principles of equality and non-discrimination which, if followed consistently, would make a decent life in this world, or any life at all, impossible. But modern liberal society does not permit the public expression of non-liberal principles, by which rational limits to equality and non-discrimination, or indeed the very falsity of these ideas altogether, can be articulated. This fact forces liberals continually to make exceptions to their own liberalism, without admitting to themselves and others that they are doing so. Such exceptions must take inchoate, non-conceptual, pre-rational forms, such as appeals to brute self-interest, to the need to respond to a pressing emergency, or to common sense. For example, liberals who want to escape from the negative consequences of their liberal beliefs in a given instance will often say that the application of a liberal idea in that instance “goes too far,” without their indicating by what principle they distinguish between an idea that has gone “too far” and one that hasn’t. In fact, it’s purely a matter of what suits their own comfort level and convenience.

Conservatives also must have recourse to the unprincipled exception, but for a different reason than the liberals. Liberals are seeking to escape the negative consequences of their own liberalism. Conservatives, of course, actively oppose liberalism, or, rather, they oppose some aspects of liberalism. But, because the conservatives live in modern liberal society, where principled opposition to liberalism is not allowed, and also because the conservatives themselves subscribe to liberalism and are not prepared to think outside its concepts, the conservatives’ only available means of opposing some aspects of liberalism is by unprincipled exceptions, such as appealing to common sense, or to the shared unreflective habits of society, or saying, “That’s just the way things are,” or asserting that a particular liberal belief is “silly” or “stupid” or “extreme.” These methods allow conservatives to find fault with various symptoms of liberalism, without attacking liberalism per se.

* * *

The Most Important Point for Traditionalists:”

[T]he most important course of action for traditionalist conservatives at the present moment (given the seemingly unstoppable power of the dominant culture, it may be the only available course of action)—and that is, knowing the truth, refusing to yield to the lies that surround us, refusing to yield to the prevailing mentality of our society, no matter how victorious it may seem.

Everybody today, particularly Republicans and mainstream conservatives, is echoing the same refrain: “Diversity is happening, immigration is happening, moral liberation is happening. We cannot return to the past. To exist and get along in this society we must accept these things.” Traditionalists must entirely reject such accommodationism. The starting point, the indispensable condition of any conservative or traditionalist movement, as well as of our personal spiritual survival, is that we say NO to the prevailing values of the liberal order and that we keep saying no, that we never accept them inwardly, even while recognizing the fact that they exercise effective control over society at present and that we may need to accommodate ourselves to them to a certain degree in our external interactions with society.

That inward refusal, that inward, spiritual independence of our environment, shared among enough like-minded people, can become the basis of a new community. And then other things, more active and external things, may become possible as well.

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Chris Roberts
Chris Roberts is Director of Special Projects at American Renaissance.
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