21 December 2015

Book Review

Cuckservative: How “Conservatives” Betrayed America by Vox Day and John Red Eagle

This book is easily one of the best books I’ve read this year.  It is extremely easy to read, quickly paced, and extremely informative.  Moreover, the sheer amount of historical perspective this book provides is very hard to beat.  As an added bonus, this book is extremely relevant and timely.

Vox starts off by addressing the myth of the melting pot, and brings some extremely fascinating history to the reader’s attention.  Among other things, he quotes Ben Franklin at length on the issue of whether Germans would assimilate into Anglo culture and then points out that even today, some 260+ years after Franklin originally voiced his concern, there are still a couple hundred thousand American citizens that communicate in Pennsylvania Deutsch, and this in spite a prolonged, dedicated attempt at large-scale assimilation in the early twentieth century.  Moreover, Vox points out research that indicates assimilation isn’t really occurring under this current wave of immigration.

From there, Vox addresses the concept of Magic Dirt (a phrase I believe was originally coined by Steve Sailer). Put simply, the magic dirt theory is that “certain beliefs, behaviors and values somehow appear in particular geographical areas…rather than being carried around from place to place by groups of people wherever they happen to be.”  This is absurd, of course, and rather reminiscent of prohibitionists who tried to pin the problems of alcohol addiction on the alcohol instead of the addict.

The most fascinating and useful part of the book is chapter 4, wherein Vox traces the history of the modern conservative movement.  In a nutshell, conservatism is rather vapid and kind of sad.  In Vox’s words, “From their very beginning the principles of conservatism were subordinate and defensive and nature, or less charitably, they were submissive and passive-aggressive in their relation to the left.”  That explains a lot, I would say.  Moreover, the conservative movement has also been characterized by its willingness to disassociate itself from its more fringe members in order to win the respect of the left. Strangely, the left doesn’t seem to respect it much.

Vox also takes the madness of open borders to task.  Longtime readers of his blog won’t be surprised by the arguments made.  The most obvious case against open borders is that it necessarily destroys nations, and moreover is a tremendous disfavor to the people who actually make a nation prosperous and peaceful.  In short, it rids a successful nation of its birthright.

Vox also makes the economic case against open borders, and it’s mostly a distilled version of Iain Fletcher’s work.  Some have apparently complained that this is the weakest chapter of the book.  I think it would be more accurate to say that this is the least accessible chapter of the book since Vox has to explain the Ricardian theory of comparative advantage in order to refute it.  Given how ineptly complex the Ricardian theory is, it’s pretty easy to see why many readers would simply skip over it.  More to the point, the entire crux of Ricardo’s theory is that, every possible thing being equal, it is better for one to focus on producing what they are best producing.  This near tautology is both banal and irrelevant.  For starters, it’s always been known on an individual, micro, mezzo, macro and national level to focus on doing what you do best in order to come out ahead.  No 5’3” guy is going to spend a lot of time, say, trying to make it to the NBA, especially if he has a knack for programming.  Banality aside, Ricardo’s point doesn’t make for a good principle upon which to make policy simply because everything else is almost never equal.  Ever.  (And even if everything else magically becomes equal, the equality is never permanent, but rather temporary.)  Thus, the economic case for open borders and free trade is built on the fantastical and outlandish theories of an “economist” that few economists take seriously these days.

Finally, Vox also addresses the prevalence of cuckservatism among nominal Christians.  In many ways, Churchian cuckservatives are worse than their secular counterparts simply by virtue of believing that they are doing the Lord’s work.  Vox spends a lot of time debunking their doctrine of welcoming invaders with open arms.  Overall, his points are very well made.

Overall, I’d say this book is a very important book at this current point in time.  It highlights just how backwards and dishonest the pro-immigration crowd.  Their hatred of the concept of the nation is simply abominable, and their self-destructive desire for foreign invasion is defended with falsehoods.  They hate their neighbors and appease their enemies, and are utterly lacking in wisdom, and knowledge of history.  This book deftly and succinctly exposes them for who they are.

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