So I’m starting a new feature of my site. It’s a series of interviews focusing on interesting and unique writers, artists, thinkers and whatever that I find on Gab.ai. Our first interview comes from a young Alt-Right thinker and philosopher named Brett Stevens. Brett has written a fascinating book on Nihilism called “Nihilism: A Philosophy Based on Nothingness and Eternity.”
He blogs at http://www.amerika.org/ and can be found on Gab at gab.ai/alternative_right
And with that, here we go….
- So tell me a little about your background. Where are you from, what is your family like, what was your youth like?
I grew up in Texas to a normal family with a strong work ethic. My youth was spent in the forest. I did not watch television or spend time on sports. I just went out and hung out with the trees, animals and plants. When I was not doing that, I read the classics of Western literature and philosophy from a relatively young age. It was pretty much a top-notch childhood.
In my early teens, I became involved in the bulletin board community, back when people called each other with dial-up modems. I began running bulletin boards myself at about that time, and moved into the hacker community, where I learned quite a bit about how people try to control each other, and how to break that control.
- What got you interested in philosophy? Who were some of your earliest influences, and how have they shaped your interest in philosophy today?
Since I spent most of my time outdoors, it took awhile to get into reading, but when I did it all happened very quickly. My family home had an extensive library of literary classics and philosophy, and so I stumbled across Kant and Nietzsche, but really found a voice with Plato, who remains my biggest enduring influence.
Interestingly, however, my introduction to philosophy came from two sources: the forest and a children’s book named The Wump World by Bill Peet. In the forest, all learning is motivated by the self and achieved through experimentation or deep intuitive thought, and I spent many hours just thinking about the nature of reality and being alive, using the mathematical structures I saw in nature as a guide.
Somewhere in my early years, I read the Bill Peet book, which is about a spacefaring race of people-like creatures who arrive on a beautiful green planet. In a zeal for comfort, or maybe a desire to be important, they tear the whole place down and cover it in concrete, building great cities. Then they notice it is polluted, complain a lot, and zip on to the next planet to do the same to it…
On the surface, the book is about the environment; underneath, it is about the void. Without a sense of purpose, humans become consumers who take complex structures and reduce them to one-dimensional ones, which results in “unintended consequences” like pollution and the kind of modern misery I saw when I went into the big city. This, I realized, was the same question Plato asked: how do we live without self-destructing?
This question continues to guide my life. I view it as the biggest challenge for any species: how to have intelligence and sanity as well. Currently civilization in the West is not doing so well on this front, but we are not alone in facing this. It seems to me to be why we see so few advanced civilizations on earth or among the stars.
- Where did you attend university and what did you major in? Were you formally trained in philosophy or were you an autodidact?
It is probably unwise of me to reveal where I went to school, but I was fortunate enough to go to a top-tier university. There I studied literature and philosophy, more of the former than the latter. Since that time, I have continued my learning in each with independent study. I was also fortunate to know a number of influential writers and thinkers when growing up, and they have guided my thinking.
- I love this quote from your website, “Western Civilization is dying. This death began thousands of years ago when individualism, or the idea that individual choices and desires are more important than reality, became sociallyacceptable. Since that time, individualism has morphed into equality through collectivized individualism.” Can you expand on your views on Individualism for the reader?
Humans have big brains. We use them to parse our world. However, our thoughts are more real than reality to us because thoughts are more accessible. This creates a tendency toward solipsism, where we view the world as we think it, not as it is. That in turn causes us to have a kind of backward thinking, or rationalism, which is a type of tunnel vision: we form thoughts, and then unintentionally direct our thinking to find data that confirms those thoughts.
The person who gives in to solipsism is an individualist, or someone who believes that his desires, feelings, thoughts and judgments are more important than reality. If evil is a variety of error, individualism is a variety of evil. People in the grips of individualism stop caring about what is real, and focus their attention on what “should” be, a type of Utopian thinking related to pacifism. They want an end to risk and struggle, and that requires that rules be made which mandate the inclusion of everyone, no matter how bad their behavior or how inept they are. This is the doctrine of equality.
When individuals gather in groups, they form a crowd. The goal of this crowd is collectivized individualism, or using the greater numbers of the crowd — like a cult, gang or mob — to force other people to accept individualism in the form of equality. Like all crowds, this crowd is comprised of individuals who are acting toward their own selfish ends, and hiding behind the lack of accountability via anonymity that the crowd provides. They take over any group from within, whether large like a civilization or small like a church group, cluster of friends, small business or political movement.
Crowdism — the name for this collectivized individualism — has the advantage always because it is not centralized, nor will it ever admit its actual goals. It inevitably hides its intent behind positive-sounding things like helping the poor or racial minorities, but its actual goal is to seize power so that it can remove all standards. These standards take many types: culture, heritage, values, philosophy, religion and even the family.
The ultimate goal of every individual in the crowd is to abolish any distinction between right and wrong, success and failure, and distinctions between individuals. This egalitarian mindset is designed to ensure that each individual in the crowd is accepted but also allowed to do whatever they want, like “anarchy with grocery stores.” They want the advantages of civilization but not the burden of keeping it healthy.
Every great civilization dies of Crowdism because only great civilizations are wealthy and powerful enough to have this possibility arise. Civilizations die by succeeding, because once they have succeeded, they no longer have the inherent purpose of early civilization, which is to achieve civilization in itself. In the absence of purpose, the lower levels of society by natural ability reproduce quickly because the forces of nature that keep them in check are removed by the efficiency, order and cleanliness of civilization. This creates a runaway reaction like a yeast bloom or “red tide” when algae reproduce too rapidly and suffocation all aquatic life.
Right now, the West has been in the middle of a Crowdism event for at least a thousand years. Our distant ancestors stayed mobile and low-technology perhaps to avoid this fate, but with fixed civilization and agriculture, the disease was allowed to take root. Our job is to find a substitute for Darwinism that keeps the good and ejects the bad, or we will drown in our own excess, as we can see happening around us daily.
- In your email to me you said Nihilism is “Conservatism without the humanism” Can you go into depth about what you meant? Can you describe your views of contemporary late 2016 conservatism?
Nihilism is extreme skepticism of human intent and human intermediates for reality. A nihilist does not believe in truth or values because these are proxies for real experience, which can be measured only by its results, not by these intermediate proxies which measure intent or obedience. Proxies rely on the idea of universalism, or all people being the same so the same rules can be used to shape each of them toward the goal of those in power, and nihilism rejects this.
Instead, nihilists affirm that individual humans are widely different, and that we act based on who we are and not what we are induced to think. This can be forced by a strong realism, which is by nature consequentialist or prone to measure its actions by results and not intent. This in turn thrusts upon us the question of what results we desire, and therefore what our purpose is, which in turn pushes us toward transcendentalism, or accepting reality as it is and finding an order within it that reveals its darkness as necessary for the ultimate end result, which is good.
I have been a declared nihilist since age fifteen when I observed that human intentions and social pretense had taken over from realistic thought, making people crazy and pathologically motivated toward things which end badly, just to uphold the image that we are all good and that we are all autonomous, thinking beings who make “rational” choices instead of the reality, which is that we act out our genetic programming and impulses.
- I noticed that you, like me, are Alt-Right. Where did you start at politically and how did you come to realize you were part of the altright?
My early life was shaped by people around me who were for the most part, at least in public, very Leftist in a bourgeois sense. They were not agitating in the streets, but they repeated the same theories and talking points to each other, even as those deviated from reality. So for the first half of my life, I was mostly Leftist, although I clashed with it because I observed numerous conflicts with reality as could be plainly seen.
Eventually I dug into philosophy and found myself in the same place I had been in the forest: breaking thought down to its highest abstraction layer, and trying to find an order that included all the known data points. At the same time, as I explored computers and networking more, I saw how very much our world operated logically in the sense of being like a very complex calculating machine. It was immediately clear that very few people got close to understanding the scope of its complexity, much less how it worked.
This drew me to the German idealists, mainly Kant and Schopenhauer, whose ideas in contemplation then fused with earlier radical realism from Nietzsche and the monist metaphysics and naturalism of Plato. This in turn pushed me toward the right, but the touchstone was black metal music and reading the works of Michel Houellebecq, which pointed out to me how Leftism was a system designed to breed mediocrity.
After that, my explorations continued with the system of thought I later developed: parallelism, or a theory of an idealist monism based on pattern similarity, and a knowledge of conservatism as that which conserves the best states of humanity and civilization through consequentialism and a transcendental outlook. These are still in development, but were most clearly expressed through essays from the late 1980s through 2005.
- Also on your website you advocate for repatriating the non-indigenous. I’m wondering, because I hear a lot on the alt-right saying this, is it realistic? How would we go about it? Some have cited cost, some have cited “meanness or Hitler” as an objection to repatriation. Is that our only hope to save the West?
If history teaches us anything, it is that time moves in cycles comprised of a period of gradual change followed by sudden directional changes. The switch to multiculturalism was radical, and the reversal of that direction will be as well, but these are hardly the most bizarre or dynamic events in history. Big changes occur all the time on a historical scale, and for that reason, repatriation will not be anomalous.
Diversity does not work. In fact, it cannot work, because each group must act in self-interest, and when those groups coexist in the same area, that self-interest — including the need for self-determination for the group, pride in identity and other intangibles — causes constant conflict. When groups are merged, an averaging of traits occurs, leaving behind people with none of the abilities of the former groups. Diversity is genocide.
For that reason, we must avoid diversity; it is simply a bad policy, like Prohibition or dumping sewage in the streets. The path to this happens through a relatively straightforward shift in policy:
- Removal of social welfare programs.
- Removal of affirmative action, civil rights and equal opportunity law.
- A gentle but mandatory policy of reparations with repatriation.
When sea changes occur, cultural attitudes shift; at that moment, people are unwilling to support the failed policy and agitate for something saner. People of every race, ethnicity and religion want this to happen, with more joining every day.
The part of this that gets the most negative feedback is the idea of reparations. To me, a gentleman acknowledges a mistake by making sure that all parties come out of severance without being materially harmed. With what they have learned among us, these individuals can go back to their native lands with new abilities and we should fork over a moderate amount of wealth to help them jump-start. That way, historical wounds are sealed and everyone feels good about the deal.
Another controversial area is my position on trace admixture. Western Europeans — the founding group of the United States — are genetically unique, and mixing them with Eastern and Southern/Irish Europeans will result in the genocide of the Western Europeans. For this reason, even “white” diversity must end.
This policy shift is coming more rapidly than people realize. Diversity has failed to replicate the successes of homogeneity, and has resulted in so much internal conflict and an abolition of all standards — always a Leftist favorite — that our civilization is non-functional. This is a do or die proposition, and the time is upon us.
- In the description of your book you say that Nihilism draws on thinkers as diverse as “William S. Burroughs, Aldous Huxley, Arthur Schopenhauer and Immanuel Kant.” What do they have in common that could unite them through Nihilism?
These thinkers would most likely not identify as nihilists, but their philosophies provided a groundwork. From Schopenhauer and Kant came the notion of idealism, which states that reality operates in a mind-correlative or idea-like manner; the pattern is more important than the material in which it is rendered, in other words. This shows us that the boundaries of our minds are less concrete than we think, and provides a basis for understanding reality through intuition, or exploration of our innermost knowledge. Huxley contributed “the perennial philosophy,” which is the basis of Traditionalism which most know through Julius Evola, which shows how every civilization has discovered eternal truths which do not change with the current year. On top of that, Burroughs revealed the psychology of human individuals in their search for power through domination of others, and how that operates in crowds, in addition to revealing the limits of psychology and rational thought in determining our actions. Together they form a powerful toolbox for understanding nihilism.
- What inspired you to write your book and start your site? Are you a budding academic or more of a public thinker?
For as long as I remember, I have read and written in an attempt to find more accurate depictions of this world and connected cosmos. I continue this as a writer, knowing that these topics are unlikely to find public acclaim, but can be injected into the ongoing growth of human thought through underground means. Beyond that, it is hard to tell; I am someone who takes great care to be as accurate as possible in his thought, and to convey it as much as he can to others who can understand it.
- Where do you see the future of the West going in the next twenty years? Some say we are destined to demographic replacement, a White Genocide, as it has been called. Is there hope or should we all pack our bags and get ready to be voted into oblivion?
We have two possible futures: Brazil or greatness. If we continue down the path of Leftism, the West will become third-world states in which white minorities retreat to the fringes and try to live independent of government as much as possible. If Leftism is rejected, we can fix our bad leadership, reconstruct our culture, and then create evolutionary pressures which bring out the best in us. The type of futurism that allows that vision recognizes how fragile our civilization is now, and how much we have to gain as individuals and groups by reversing the insanity by finding a purpose and heading in that direction instead, rather than simply rebelling in an inverse linear form against the present regime.
- Do you have hope for the future? If so why?
There is always hope. Humans can change themselves, or at least some can, and they tend to influence others by their natural leadership abilities. Right now, every Leftist policy is failing at once, and so history will force us to make a change. In my view, it will shift toward the vision of futurism and not the old, tired, and failed system of liberal democracy.
- You were recently shadow banned from Twitter. Can you talk about what led to it? Is that what led you to Gab?
The scary truth is that with a shadowban, you have no idea when it happens. You notice that fewer people are responding to your posts, and that you seem to be cut out of discussions with anyone who is not on your friend list. Then you do a little poking around and find that you have been shadowbanned. I do not know when it happened, or why, but yes, it drove me to gab.ai and other off-mainstream services. If the official services reject me, I can find more people off the beaten path, and they tend to be more aware and receptive to what must be said.
- What inspires you?
As Plato said it, “the good, beautiful and true,” mostly in nature and exceptional human beings. The power of choice inspires me, and the ability to do what is sensible instead of receding into our monkey-brains and acting socially or as a solipsist. The possibilities and potential of life, which fills itself up with those on an eternal cycle. The chance to explore the stars. The possibility of gods. All good things.