To understand the world of politics and change it for the better, it’s paramount that people begin to study political theory and the ways in which it has manifest throughout history up into the present day. By bringing light to the origins of political and philosophical thought, the present day becomes all the more explainable because one is now able to see the logical progression of such manifestations.
With this urge to better understand the root of many of the common political ideologies present in the world, The Last American Vagabond has decided to team up with Keith Preston in a new article and podcast series in which the who, what, where, when and how of different political theories will be explored.
For those who don’t know him, Keith Preston was born in Lynchburg, Virginia, United States. He received a B.A. in Religious Studies and an M.A. in History from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia, with additional graduate study in Sociology and Criminology. Keith is a former instructor of Sociology at John Tyler Community College. He is a former regional delegate for the Industrial Workers of the World and a former member of the National Committee of the Workers Solidarity Alliance, the U.S. section of the International Workers Association. He is the founder and director of American Revolutionary Vanguard and the chief editor of AttacktheSystem.com. Keith has been a contributor to LewRockwell.com, Antiwar.com, Anti-State.com, Taki’s Magazine, and AlternativeRight.com. He was awarded the 2008 Chris R. Tame Memorial Prize by the United Kingdom’s Libertarian Alliance for his essay, “Free Enterprise: The Antidote to Corporate Plutocracy.” Keith has been a featured speaker at conferences of the National Policy Institute and the H. L. Mencken Club. He has been interviewed on numerous internet podcast and radio programs and appeared as a guest analyst on Russia Today and BBC Persian. He is also the host of the ongoing “Attack the System” online podcast series.
Part 1: CULTURAL MARXISM
In this episode Keith and Tim Bryant take a look at Cultural Marxism, which is the transformation of the political left from a party focused on the eternal class struggle in society of labor workers vs. the elite owners of capital, to a party focused on cultural infiltration in order to weed out the “oppressors and oppressions” within society.
Stemming from the commonly held belief that the workers of the world were bought off by the elite capitalists through consumerism, the left thought it was no longer fruitful to keep fighting capitalism. Instead, their new method of redefining Western society was to be carried out by infiltrating the culture and remaking it in the image of an equal world free of the old cultural and economic values.
The concept of Cultural Marxism is often referred to as political correctness, which is the creation of a culture where no one can criticize anyone because that will hurt someone’s feelings. In this PC culture, the white male is thought of as the number one aggressor and must be brought down a peg so the culture as a whole can even out, and all races, genders, sexual orientations, and religions can be equal. Many of its manifestations in political activism include racism, sexism, ageism, feminism, the LBGTQ community, veganism, environmentalism, and a plethora of other social justice warrior causes that aim to fight for the oppressed within society.
The goal of this video is not to put down or discriminate any of these causes, but instead to give some historical context as to how all of these causes stem from Cultural Marxism, or what Keith Preston refers to as “totalitarian humanism,” as well as an honest critique of the positives and negatives of such an ideological framework. It’s clear the left has taken pride in being the party of social justice warriors, while the right has responded with major backlash towards it, being very quick to call many of them out for losing the plot. However, despite the major differences of perception when it comes to Cultural Marxism, the real question should be whether or not there is some middle ground that all can agree to and build upon?
If society is to truly change, everyone must learn to see through the lenses of differing political ideologies, so that instead of focusing on the divides that keep us running nowhere, we can see the commonalities that bond us and build foundations upon those. The first step is awareness, and knowledge is key to awareness.
Part 2: NEOLIBERALISM
In part 2, Keith and Tim take a deeper look into what is commonly known as neoliberalism, which is an ideological spinoff from classical liberalism that tends to champion free markets and open borders as the best economic models for the world.
In their doctrine, neoliberals claim that laissez-faire free markets will bring maximum prosperity to the world, but the reality seems to be quite different. When we study their actions over the last 4o+ years, we notice that neoliberals are very much in favor of state intervention for the benefit of the dominant ruling class, while the concerns of everyone else are completely forgotten. The obvious contradiction here is that the use of state intervention to benefit the elite class is inherently against free market principles; therefore, it can’t even be considered of free market origin.
When looking at the past neoliberal administrations and the policies they have implemented, what we often see is privatization of key assets in society, austerity measures the result to cuts in social programs and abolition of workers rights, international free trade agreements that benefit big businesses, deregulation of laws the hold corporations in check like pollution standards, and exploitation of foreign countries by the more dominant western societies. When adding all these policies together, what starts to emerge is an enormous wealth gap between the elite class and everyone else, mostly because the dominant class has free reign over most of the key markets and assets around the world, while at the same time utilizing cheap labor and defunding social safety nets. In reality, neoliberalism is the economic engine of the current manifestation of globalism, while neo-conservatism could be considered the military side of globalism.
It’s becoming abundantly clear that society needs to eradicate the cancer of neoliberalism from the world, especially when considering that the worlds eight richest people have as much wealth as the bottom half. This is a trend that is only getting worse. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand that the current path is simply unsustainable and will lead to massive social unrest if not properly dealt with, and rightfully so.
To break away from such a toxic system that has its tentacles all over the world, it’s paramount that people begin to learn how this system is created; specifically the who, what, where, when, and why behind the neoliberal ideology. Once people begin to identify the core of the ideology and how it all works, then they can begin the necessary process of uprooting it and ultimately replacing it with something much better.
Part 3: NEOCONSERVATISM
In part 3, Keith and Tim examine what is commonly referred to as neoconservatism, which is an ideology that has come to dominate the politics of the Republican Party for the last couple decades, particularly during the George W. Bush presidency.
Unbeknownst to many conservatives is the historical foundation upon which neoconservatism was built, specifically how its roots can be traced back to communism and in particular Trotskyism. What makes this so interesting is that many conservatives see themselves as being rabidly outspoken against communism, yet the truth is that many of the leaders they’re voting into power to represent the Republican Party are in fact ideologues with communist roots.
As mentioned earlier, neoliberalism is the economic engine driving globalism. Similarly, neoconservatism is the muscle enforcing globalism around the world. Without brute force to backup these globalists’ policies, many nations would resist them and not conform to the western consensus. The neocons flex their muscles most notably by interventionist wars, such as in Iraq and Afghanistan while George W. Bush was president. These imperialist endeavors are often justified by claiming that they are spreading “freedom/democracy,” defending their ally Israel, fighting a holy war against Islam, and most notably, that America is exceptional and it’s our duty to take care of the entire world. At their core, the neocons are interested world domination with America as the undisputed leader.
Unfortunately, if one takes a step back and looks at the foreign policy of the U.S. government over the last few decades, it’s pretty clear that the neocons have implemented disastrous, if not treasonous policies that go against the will of the American people. This idea that America should be the policemen of the world and that every nation needs to cater to our interests or risk invasion is a barbaric and misguided way of viewing the world that needs to be stomped out if peace is to be achieved amongst nations. It also must be understood that this radical war against Islam being waged by the neocons will go nowhere until they address the people within the U.S. government who are actively funding, arming, and training the Islamic rebels they claim to be fighting against, who in turn fight the proxy wars on behalf of the U.S.
To break away from such a toxic system, that has resulted in millions of civilian deaths around the world, it’s paramount that people begin to learn how this system functions. The goal of this podcast is simply to aid in the process of understanding the problem, because we know that a better world is attainable if we keep seeking out the truth and building on those enhanced understandings.
Part 4: ANARCHISM
In episode 4, Keith and Tim examine the increasingly popular idea of anarchism, which doesn’t necessarily have an agreed upon definition since it means many things to many people, but the general idea is a society free of centralized control, mostly through the abolition of the state.
The common feeling of most who see themselves as anarchists is that a tiny elite class of people have gained far too much power in society through the utilization of government, which they have infiltrated and corrupted in order to give themselves an artificial monopolization of power. As a result, most anarchists see the elimination of government as the best solution to centralized control.
However, unbeknownst to many is the understanding that the left and right have very different perceptions when it comes to the definition and goals of anarchism. The left has adopted a more historical approach, seeing it as a vehicle to fight capitalism and the elite rulers within the state that enable this crony form of economics. In the eyes of the left, capitalism and statism are one in the same, in that laborers of the world are getting royally screwed over by the owners of capital, who have gained this privilege through its control over the positions of power within the state. In essence, the largest owners of capital took over the state and now utilize it for their own gains.
On the other end, the right has adopted a newer approach when it comes to anarchism, seeing it as the best vehicle to fight against the state, which is the biggest hindrance in society to free markets. In the eyes of the right, free markets are a thing of beauty and have the greatest ability of all economic systems to bring tangible freedom and peace within the world. With this goal in mind, the state is seen as the greatest threat to free markets, as they usually create monopolies for those most connected to the state, as opposed to those who offer the best product or service. In essence, the state was always corrupt and is the original source of crony-capitalism.
No matter which foundations brought one to the idea of anarchism, both ideologies have the same goal; abolish the current power structure in world.
To better understand the nuances of anarchism, and what a world could look like without the current form of statism, Keith and Tim look at the historical roots of anarchism, the varying ideologies that fall under the umbrella term of anarchism, as well as where the current movement should go from here. With so many problems going on in the world, anarchism has the capability to change the world for the better, but none of that will happen unless those who are anti-establishment can unite under one banner. The goal of this podcast is to ask the tough questions so that the conversation evolves rather than runs around in circles going nowhere as it far too often does. An anarchist community divided will stagnate and go no where fast; but a united one can truly change the world if it continues to mature. Knowledge and understanding is always the first step in the process of evolution.
Part 5: THE ALT-RIGHT
In part 5, Keith and Tim take a look at the recently popularized term “alt-right,” which, to those who have done any type of research, is a complex term that means many things to many different people.
If one was to simply do a surface level inspection of the alt-right through an examination of mainstream media’s critique on the term, it would appear that the alt-right is nothing more than ideology based on white supremacy and an outgrowth of the neo-nazi movement. However, upon further examination of the topic, it appears that this explanation is far too simplistic and inherently incorrect when it comes to encompassing the broad meaning of the term “alt-right.”
However, some racist movements have indeed chosen to fly under the banner of the alt right, but the truth is that the alt-right has its roots in paleo-conservatism, which was a reactionary movement against the neo-cons who took control of the Republican Party. This outgrowth went on to evolve and include the reactionary movement against cultural Marxism, which is a term used to refer to political correctness. This subculture that has become much more recognizable as a result of the 2016 presidential election has gone on to become quite a force, in large part because of its mastery of the Internet, such as through memes (Kek), forums (Pol), and social media infiltration at large.
One doesn’t have to label themselves alt-right to see that some issues brought up within this sub-culture are legitimate issues that need to be discussed, such as immigration, national sovereignty, and forced multi-culturalism. However, anyone who does label themselves as alt-right should also understand that having an ideology based on preservation of the white culture is undoubtedly not going to appeal to the wider diversity within the nation, and in many ways is going to hinder them from building bridges with other movements. It’s okay to have white identity politics, just like blacks, Hispanics, and Asians have their own identity groups; but in terms of building a united front with other groups against the establishment, it could be quite difficult.
The following podcast is designed to ask the tough questions when it comes to the alt-right, instead of worrying about appeasing either side of the debate. It seems that painting the entire alt-right with the broad brush white supremacy is incorrect and doesn’t really get into the nuances and history of such ideology, but at the same time, acting like the alt-right doesn’t have its own problems is just as silly of a stance to take. It seems that answer falls somewhere in the middle, with a variety of gray areas for people to dissect and come to their own conclusions. Hopefully, understanding the alt-right ideology will help people empathize more with such people, while at the time help people involved in the movement to realize some compromises need to be made if they are to gain any traction in terms of tangible change. If people of any ideology are actually serious about moving society forward, the only way is a united front of varying belief systems, which is why these podcasts were created in the first place. Take the time to see though the lens of others.
Part 6: CLASSICAL LIBERALISM AND PROGRESSIVISM
In part 6, Keith and Tim discuss classical liberalism and reform liberalism (often considered progressivism today), which is a philosophy that came out of the idea that citizens have inalienable rights against established systems of power, like the monarchy or the state.
The American Revolution was one of the first classic liberal movements and most of the founding documents, on which the United States of America is based, such as the Bill of Rights, the Declaration of Independence, and the Constitution, are a direct embodiment of the core principles presented in the ideology of classical liberalism.
Unfortunately today, many people, especially on the right of the political spectrum, hear the word liberalism and immediately get negative connotations in their mind when it comes to the meaning of the word, even though the slogan of “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” is rooted in classical liberalism. The misunderstanding derives from how classical liberalism split off in many directions, such as those in favor of a more negative approach when it comes to freedom (libertarians) and those with a more positive approach when it comes to freedom (reform liberalism/progressives). Over time, reform liberalism came to define the left, such as with past policies like the New Deal and new movements like those who follow Bernie Sanders.
It is imperative for those that understand the system is corrupt to come together under one banner, which is why the goal of the following podcast is to get those in the liberty movement to see through the lens of the left and just how/why their movements formed the way they did. Instead of sitting at home and making fun of each other all day, it’s time people begin to see the many ways in which other people see the world, along with some historical perspective to give context to particular ideologies. The day the anti-establishment left unites with the anti-establishment right, is the day the game ends for the elites that run the establishment in Washington.
Part 7: SOCIALISM AND COMMUNISM
After discussing classical liberalism and reform liberalism/progressivism, Keith and Tim go deeper into the roots of the Left, to examine the foundations of both socialism and communism; terms that are often used interchangeably, with communism being a more extreme version of socialism.
What makes discussion of socialism or communism so difficult, yet fascinating, is that there are many around the world that adore this political ideology, deeming it a colossal progression in human civilization, yet on the other hand there are just as many who completely oppose the ideology, asserting it as one of the highest forms of tyranny. Needless to say, these terms are very polarizing, but how many really understand the roots and complexity of these ideas?
Communism, more than anything else, was an outgrowth of the massive class division in society, and in particular the newly minted capitalist class that arose out of the Industrial Revolution. Feudal agricultural societies that were once ruled by monarchs, transformed into industrial civilizations dictated by wealthy financial capitalists. Often times it was the same elite networks of people who ruled over society, but just opted to use different methods of control. Those who personally owned the capital in society, whether that be land, people, or resources, become extremely rich, while the laborers who powered the economic engine of society were subject to horrendous working conditions, measly wages, and little to no say in what goes on in the business/economy they participate in.
As a result, the workers of the world rose up and demanded for a bigger portion of the pie, which eventually gave rise to the tenants of socialism and communism. The idea was to have a worker owned society, instead of a society owned by a few people. Unfortunately, like many other political movements throughout history, statism turned the idea of giving society back to its citizens into real world political movement that revolved around the buildup of the state and a massive bureaucracy to control/manage society. This centralized power in society to a one party state that acted in the “best interests” of the people, which never history shows never goes as promised.
While communism turned into a form of totalitarian statism, it doesn’t mean that ideas of workers getting a larger chunk of the pie is a completely bunk idea that should be tossed aside. Looking at the massive inequities in society today, such as a few families owning an ungodly amount of the world assets, it is probably wise to take some of the teachings of communism and learn from them, such as worker run co-ops and utilizing public institutions to balance out greedy private interests. In reality, communism and capitalism have both been corrupted by statism, yet both offer different, but necessary solutions to the problem of statism such as free markets and free communes of activity. People need individual freedom, but people also need community and protection against out of control private interests.
Hopefully, this podcast can serve as a bridge between those who want to decentralize power through free markets and those who want to decentralize power through workers revolts. Both have noble goals and both have the same enemy… the buildup of a corrupt state. See the common bond and identify the common enemy and only then will society achieve any sustainable peace.
Part 8: FASCISM
In part 8, Keith and Tim discuss fascism, a term that many people throw around loosely, but hardly have any historical or intellectual understanding as to what it really means.
Just like many on the right will label anyone on the left that they deem corrupt as a communist, the same logic applies to the left and how they label anyone on the right they deem corrupt to be a fascist. This misplaced hostility towards one another is at the heart of why the world can’t progress towards peace. How can society resolve its differences if it doesn’t even understand the ideas of its past? Coming to terms with these movements and what they represented is at the core of what this podcast is all about.
The truth is that fascism is a very distinct movement that has its roots in Benito Mussolini’s rule of Italy, which was an ideological outgrowth of World War I; the first war where most of the world was involved. Due to a heightened sense of militarism that resulted from WWI and the financial poverty that people witnessed from The Great Depression, fascism arose as a revolutionary movement from the political right, with the purpose of abolishing the old liberal order, which had so clearly failed them. Unlike traditional conservatism, which wanted to preserve the established system, fascism was revolutionary in that it wanted to create a new society based upon a unified militaristic state, whereas the leader was a direct embodiment of the will of the people and the state was involved in everything.
Just as the case with most political movements that gain large-scale acceptance, the corrupt elements of statism took hold and the state become far more powerful than it should be, more often than not to the detriment of the people. This was particularly evident in Hitler’s Germany, as the state was involved in everything, even excessively spying on its own citizens through the Stazi. Questioning the state was one of the highest crimes in a fascist society, making flexible change through the will of the people extremely difficult, if not impossible. Fascists often claim that the state is organic, but is it not contradictory that an organic state be ruled by state force?
The goal of the following podcast is to both give people an honest education of just how fascism formed, as well as provide the proper context with which to view fascism. Contrary to some popular beliefs, fascism is just one political ideology that took on corrupt statism in its real life form amongst a plethora of others that did the same, which were previously discussed. In fact, all political ideologies can be infiltrated and used against the people, so thinking fascism is alone in its real world application is misleading. It’s important people take the time to learn the different ideological threads, because only when they can put them all together into a coherent picture can society truly evolve into something greater.
It’s time to put our differences aside and work together.
About the author:
An avid free-thinker, Tim has set out on a mission in search of the truth in whatever form it may come. Ever since his awakening several years ago, his passion for knowledge and justice has led him on a journey into deep research, cultural travel, and complete expansion of the mind. Tim feels as if the information freely flowing into the hands of the public, due to the dawn of the Internet, cannot be stopped at this point, so he has made it his goal to help facilitate and breakdown this complex stream of information, so that others can accelerate their own awakening and be part of the inevitable change happening in society.
You can connect with Tim at:
Recommended reading by Tim Bryant:
- The Lonely Road of the Free Thinker
- Truth Seeking: A Calling Far Greater Than Our Subjective Experience
- Activism: Starve the Beast, Feed the Light
- 5 Solutions for a New World
- The Coming Revolution — A New Vibrational Reality
- How Do the People of Truth Win the Current Information War?
- The Lost Art of Entertaining the Thought
- We Have The Same Enemy Yet We Are Still Divided
- The Awakening Goes Deeper Than You Think
- The Art of Maintaining Core Frequency in Life
Respect and gratitude The Last American Vagabond, where this article first appeared.