Mar 9, 2016

The AltRight, Economics, and an Alternative Theory of White Disunity

via Alternative Right

One of my perennial critiques of the Alternative Right is that alt righters do not focus enough on economic issues. Given that monied interests play a huge role in the cultural erosion of the West, this is rather troubling – and puzzling. What's even more puzzling, and pleasantly surprising, is that certain left-leaning thinkers have provided us with the analytical tools necessary to demolish neoliberal myths.

Two excellent examples of this unlikely intellectual ammunition are the books The Conservative Nanny State by economist Dean Baker, as well as 23 Things They Don't Tell You About Capitalism by economist and Cambridge lecturer Ha-Joon Chang. Given how much the economics discipline has been polluted by Milton Friedman and other purveyors of "free market" filth, these books are breaths of fresh air; they also both directly tackle immigration and contain excellent refutations of open borders nonsense.

In The Conservative Nanny State, Dean Baker puts to rest the hackneyed argument that assiduous immigrants do "the jobs Americans won't do" (emphasis mine):

"The conservative nanny state folklore on immigration is that immigrants take jobs that workers in the United States do not want, and they point to jobs like custodians, dishwashers, and fruit picking, all very low paying jobs. The problem with the folklore is that the reason that native born workers are unlikely to want these jobs is that they are low-paying, not because they are intrinsically such awful jobs. Native-born workers have been willing to take many unpleasant jobs when they were compensated with high wages. Meatpacking is an obvious example of an industry that did offer relatively high-paying jobs that were widely sought after by native-born workers, even though no one would be very happy to work in a slaughterhouse. This is less true today than in the past, because the meatpacking industry has taken advantage of the availability of immigrant workers to depress wages and working conditions in the industry. As a result, immigrant workers are now a very large share of the workforce in the meatpacking industry."

However, as Baker demonstrates, the flip side is that our elites ensure highly paid professionals are mostly shielded from immigrant and foreign competition, mainly through various legal and professional barriers. A great example is Congress in 1997 tightening licensing rules for foreign doctors entering the US, which was lobbied for by the American Medical Association and other doctors' groups who were – you guessed it – concerned that the influx of foreign doctors would reduce their incomes. In other words, more supply reduces demand and depresses wages. Crazy, I know. But it's not just overpaid American doctors – who make around twice as much as doctors in other rich countries – that benefit from the kind of protectionism not afforded to the white working class. The same walls protect lawyers, economists, and smug mainstream pundits who endorse "free trade" and open immigration.
Ha-Joon Chang makes the point even more bluntly than Baker by asserting that immigration control is primarily responsible for relatively high wages in 1st world countries:

"If there were free migration, most workers in rich countries could be, and would be, replaced by workers from poor countries. In other words, wages are largely politically determined."

Indeed, if doofuses and shills (probably both) like Dylan Matthews and Bryan Caplan have their way, they too will eventually be sacrificed on the altar of globalization. Chang, however, is certainly not extolling the wonders of mass immigration; in fact, he believes in national sovereignty and even recognizes that allowing in large numbers of radically different people can engender social unrest (again, emphasis mine):

"Countries have the right to decide how many immigrants they accept and in which parts of the labour market. All societies have limited capabilities to absorb immigrants, who often have very different cultural backgrounds, and it would be wrong to demand that a country goes over that limit. Too rapid an inflow of immigrants will not only lead to a sudden increase in competition for jobs but also stretch the physical and social infrastructures, such as housing and healthcare, and create tensions with the resident population."

All of this is absolutely correct, and I suspect that Chang's East Asian heritage plays a big role in forming his pragmatic worldview. In addition to accommodating nationalistic impulses, Chang, consciously or not, recognizes a simple truth: life is a zero-sum game. For some people to prosper, others must live in poverty; for natives in 1st world countries to enjoy certain comforts, it's necessary to shut the gates to the world's huddled masses.

Likewise, for Bay Area yuppies to enjoy access to cheap maids and gardeners, the interests of the white masses must be sacrificed. The reason why I make this particular point about wealthy Bay Area denizens is because I sometimes get the sense that certain people in the Alternative Right fail to divine the real reasons why so many whites countenance multiculturalism. I know it's tempting (and fun!) to attribute the West's demise to the ethnomasochism of liberal – and cuckservative – weenies. Consequently, many believe that some kind of white awakening is required, where fruity whites are finally disabused of their quixotic beliefs.

But I think something else is also at play. For many whites – Democrat and Republican – their embrace of immigration and multiculturalism is an expression of class interests. Employers in the restaurant industry want a large pool of illegal immigrant labor at their disposal; "strong and independent" women climbing the corporate ladder depend on foreign domestics to tend to the home; and affluent people of all stripes enjoy the benefits of mass immigration because they get to enjoy access to cheaper services – while simultaneously shielding themselves from immigration's deleterious economic and social effects.

Also, while this is purely anecdotal, many Bay Area liberals make no effort to conceal their disdain for "white trash" and other whites who aren't as successful or "enlightened" as them. Likewise, I've known rich, narcissistic, white Orange County Republicans who care more about lower taxes than preserving a white majority. Both groups, while certainly more individualistic than the norm, aren't completely clueless and atomized; they just happen to have different priorities, and see themselves as members of a different team.

Therefore, one of the biggest problems isn't so much that oblivious, wimpy whites have laid down and died. Rather, it's the incompatible interests of the white masses and white elites – and the white masses are currently getting trounced in this war. That's why fighting income inequality is so vital; it's why we must also challenge neoliberal dogma, which asserts that everything must revolve around the market and that promotes "growth" just for its own sake. Most importantly, we must extirpate the kind of radical individualism that renders whites susceptible to the aforementioned neoliberal nonsense.

Future Alt-Righters?
If the Alternative Right were to devote more energy to these issues, there could be tremendous potential for its growth (not all growth is bad). For one, we could make inroads with derided and maligned white male "Bernie Bro" types. After watching their beloved candidate get inevitably railroaded by the neoliberal, identitarian wing of the Democratic Party, their disgust with Hillary Clinton and her SJW surrogates might very well cause them to gravitate towards other groups that espouse economic populism – sans the social justice nonsense. More importantly, by chipping away at neoliberal logic, we can play our part in laying foundation for the radical belief that certain things other than the sacrosanct market – race, culture, national sovereignty, etc – have value.

It's imperative that we devote more attention to America's economic coma, and remind our fellow white people that we used to care about more than looking out for number one.

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