Who’s Really the Extremist? – On the Insanity of Today’s Overton Window
This is the text of F. Roger Devlin’s talk delivered at the third meeting of the Scandza Forum in Stockholm on April 7, 2018 and at the first Awakening Conference in Helsinki on April 8, 2018.
Toward the New Mainstream
by F. Roger Devlin
We supporters of the nationalist cause are the spokesmen for certain largely suppressed truths about human nature: for example, that the tribal instinct is both natural and adaptive in the evolutionary sense, that it cannot be eliminated by any amount of exhortation, and that eliminating it would not be desirable even if it were possible. Historically, there is nothing unusual about understanding racial differences, the legitimacy of preferring blood relatives to strangers, and the desirability of patriotism or loyalty to one’s tribe—although there has been recent progress in explaining these things in terms of evolutionary theory. But today, of course, those of us with a realistic understanding of such matters are an embattled minority.
There is a temptation to adapt ourselves to such a situation psychologically, to settle down in it and feel at home as an embattled minority—a kind of subculture—as opposed to assuming our historical responsibilities as the vanguard of a revived European civilization. To accomplish the latter task, we need the mainstream, the great mass of our fellow citizens, as much as they need us. Even here in Europe, where nationalist parties are beginning to enjoy real success, I think the task of nationalism is still primarily educational. It is a Herculean task to undo the effects of a lifetime of harmful propaganda on millions of our fellow men, and although we have been making real progress, even now we are still closer to the beginning than the end.
Our opponents characterize us as “extremists” to make ordinary people afraid of us. They have enjoyed some success with this tactic; people have been slow to give our ideas a fair hearing. But what does it mean to be “extreme”? Some say we are extreme because we present information they would prefer to see suppressed: for example, about race and intelligence, ethnic crime statistics, or the history of Islam. But there is no such thing as extreme information; statements of fact can only be true or false.
In fact, extremism, as our opponents use the term, refers to the scale of political preferences currently considered “respectable.” Within the past few years, the term “Overton window” has gained popularity. It means the range of opinion tolerated in public policy debates at any given time. This is the sort of thing people have in mind—that our ideas lie outside the present bounds of permissible discourse, mainly as defined by our opponents themselves. And the thing I want you to notice here is that extremism so defined is independent of any content whatever: any principle, however true, can be considered extreme whenever it is rejected by enough people, or at least by those who control access to mainstream debate.
Now there are indeed people who look at the range of opinions out there and conclude that the truth must lie somewhere in the middle. “Moderates” of this type arrive at their views by considering not the world around them, but the already formed opinions of other men. In other words, they get all their ideas at second hand. Little insight is to be gained in this way.
I’d like to suggest a better, deeper, more meaningful understanding of “moderate” and “extreme” which avoids this objection, defining the concepts in terms of something objective rather than a mere momentary state of public opinion.
Man is a natural kind. Like any other species of animal or plant, we are adapted to certain external conditions, which must be maintained for us to flourish. By changing the conditions, you do not change the nature of man, you merely prevent his flourishing. One of the plagues of the modern age is the failure to accept these limitations of the human condition. Our opponents are determined to improve human beings through altering their environment. This is what all forms of political radicalism have in common. In Soviet Russia it was declared that people would work just as well or even better for the common good than to support their own families. A lot of misery resulted, because people just aren’t like that; the communist system was not adapted to the nature of human beings.
Today the leaders of European-derived peoples all over the world are determined that their subjects shall identify with the human race as a whole, shedding all particular loyalties. Europeans shall no longer distinguish between the neighbor and the stranger. They shall not object to the importation of hostile aliens into their living space, nor even to being replaced by them. This project of the European and North American elites is every bit as radical as the Soviet Communism of old, though distinct from it in certain ways. Indeed, in some ways it is a political project unprecedented in human history, and future historians are going to have difficulty making it plausible to their readers.
Now I ask you: who are the extremists here? Is it those who are demanding of European man the suppression of his territorial instincts, his preference for his own kind, and even his will to go on living? This is the central point we must make clear to our fellow Europeans. Human beings are tribal because it helps them survive and thrive: division into distinct tribes and nations is adaptive in the evolutionary sense. We who understand and accept this reality are neither radical nor extremist no matter how few of us there may be, and even if everyone else has been taught to hate us for it, because we have the nature of things on our side.
It is the present-day European elites who represent the radical, existential threat: the planned extinction of our civilization and people. Our principles are merely those of evolutionary survival, the same as those of all successful peoples of the past. The general public is in for a shock when they figure this out, as with our help they will in the next few years. Don’t be too hard on your fellow citizens: it is not easy to realize that every authority you have respected your entire life has been objectively working toward your destruction, especially when you keep hearing that you live in a democracy where authorities are elected to serve the people. Never speak contemptuously of those who have not yet been brought to understand what you understand.
So we must not internalize our enemies’ idea that we are extremists or radicals. And there is a temptation to do this, especially for the young men who represent our future. It’s flattering to a young man to be thought of as dangerous. But it is more important to be a responsible leader of one’s own people.
Another temptation to avoid is overestimating the importance of what gets a big reaction from our enemies or the mainstream press. Popular coverage of our movement deliberately focuses on trivialities. While European women are being raped and murdered as a result of policies they support, they want the public upset over some fool giving a Hitler salute. While the European birthrate sinks toward 1.3 children per woman, they want people to worry about people posting unkind thoughts on Facebook and Twitter. We must always remain focused on the essential point that the result of current European policy will be our extinction as a distinct people. Western nations must change course if they are to survive, and they have only a limited time in which to do so. Don’t let your enemies get you bogged down in discussions of the Third Reich. We are motivated by the timeless instinct of self-preservation; they are the ones determined to keep fighting the last war.
We need to emphasize the many things we can deliver, things the common man wants: protection from immigrant criminality, support for families and motherhood—even the sheer economic savings from eliminating the multicultural bureaucracy. But most important is restoring to our people a sense of who they are, a sense of belonging to something both larger than themselves as individuals and smaller than the entire world. This would do more than anything else I can think of to restore a sense of purpose to the lives of the young.
The human tendency to ethnic resentment, to think poorly of those outside one’s own group, cannot be eliminated; it is part of our evolved psychological equipment, selected for because it promotes our survival. But it can be kept within bounds and prevented from doing unnecessary harm by guaranteeing each group its own territory in which to live according to its own preferences. In our ideal state, there will be no racial persecution, but neither will there be an inquisition to make sure everybody loves everybody else and destroying the lives of those who don’t.
In a sense, we have it easier than our current rulers: our ideas are adapted to the way people really are, rather than trying to adapt human beings to preconceived ideals. Our opponents have pursued their utopia through a program of conditioning aimed at all citizens from earliest childhood, and now when it has become clear to them they have not succeeded, they are resorting to draconian punishments for dissidents. This is not a sign of strength, but of desperation.
We, on the other hand, will not need an endless stream of propaganda in schools and over the airwaves once we regain control of our own societies, although there will certainly be a war of counter-propaganda before we get to that point. Our schools will once again be able to focus on the transmission of civilization and the cultivation of character.
It is becoming ever harder for anyone to believe that the end of the multicultural project will be a happier, more harmonious society. Even our leaders only maintain their faith by consciously averting their eyes and stopping their ears. We are the only men with a clear vision for averting the approaching catastrophe. We must break through the curtain of fear and misconception that our enemies have drawn around us to bring our message of national salvation to the ordinary people of Europe and North America. Once we succeed in this task, political victory and everything else will follow naturally.
The multiculturalists have no more hollow or indeed desperate argument to offer than the supposed “impossibility” of reversing Third World colonization. In the first place, this is a shame-faced admission that mass immigration has brought us no benefits. But apart from that, it is simply obvious that it is no farther from Europe back to Africa than it was from Africa to Europe. Many of the settlers will return voluntarily as soon as the political signals change and the tax money stops flowing. A self-reinforcing momentum is likely to be created.
The one thing I would caution all nationalists against is resorting to half-measures, such as limiting further immigration but attempting to “integrate” Muslims and Africans already here. To some, this sort of apparent “moderation” is tempting because it seems more achievable. It’s the same kind of thinking as measuring extremism by the current state of the Overton window. You just split the difference between yourself and your opponents, and voilà you have a “reasonable” compromise.
The problem with such a tactic is that it is philosophically incoherent, and therefore unstable. If we can integrate the Muslims and other foreigners living among us, there can be no good reason to oppose importing more of them. Besides, the foreign communities tend to have higher birth rates than we do, and alienation from European society tends actually to increase over the generations. This happened in Germany. The original Turkish Gastarbeiter of the 1950s and 60s kept their heads down, worked hard and saved money. Their descendants have become ethnic militants, formed gangs, and are a destabilizing force in a society they know can never be their own.
Genuine prudence and moderation lies not in mechanically splitting the difference between our principles and those of our opponents, but in adopting a program adapted to the real nature and needs of our societies and sticking to it, making clear to ordinary Europeans that it is a reasonable program that will actually solve the problems we face if fully implemented. Our main task remains communication and education, even when it takes the form of political activism.
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Source: Counter-Currents Publishing