I’m sure you’ve all noticed this: white nationalism is commonly characterized by the media as a primarily economic issue. This is the party line from the New York Times; they’re constantly banging on about how Trump voters are just desperately poor (not true), and reporting on interviews and focus groups with disaffected moderates where they hear them complaining about employment and regulations and immigrants competing for their jobs (because, apparently, young Republicans dream of someday working in a poultry slaughterhouse).
Another victim of this desperate aversion to actually pointing out endemic racism is the New Statesman. Writing about some new right wing scheme called The Anglosphere Project in 2000, you might get the impression that this movement is defined by its stance on free trade, entrepreneuralism, and market policy — it’s all very wonky.
For the moment, it remains semi-subterranean, new, a little shocking – like the ideas of rolling back the power of trade unions which the Tories were rehearsing in the mid-1970s; or the attack on comprehensive welfare systems which the US policy-thinker Charles Murray was testing out around the same time; or the foretelling of the collapse of the Soviet Union which analysts such as Zbigniew Brzezinski were putting into public debate, to general disbelief, a little later.
This idea, or rather cluster of ideas, has similar origins – in the Anglo-American intellectual right, a milieu at once self- confident, vengeful, well funded and very sharp. It is based on the belief that the transatlantic right needs some kind of coherent internationalist vision to set against the corporatist European Union. The answer is what the science-fiction writer Neal Stephenson has called the Anglosphere. The US, Canada, Britain, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa and much of the West Indies, it is pointed out, enjoy a common language, a common culture, common legal traditions and, above all, common entrepreneurial instincts. Can these countries create a loose association of some kind? Mexico, though it does not meet all the criteria, would have to fit in, since it is already part of the North American Free Trade Agreement (Nafta) – which is central to the Anglosphere project, both economically and politically. Norway might fit in, given that it is negotiating with Nafta. Japan, backward-looking and over-regulated, would not.
You should be suspicious, though. The Anglosphere Project was founded by John O’Sullivan, a Thatcherite, Conrad Black, the Canadian version of Rupert Murdoch, and Robert Conquest, a right-wing historian, now deceased.
I don’t know whether it has evolved in the last 17 years, or whether the real motivation was lurking beneath the capitalist veneer all along, but if you check out Project Anglosphere right now, it’s a hotbed of seething racist buzzwords. They are all about our “heritage”. We must defeat “diversity” and “multiethnicity”. Repeal “multiculturalism” now.
In this turbulent era an amoral, ruthless Globalism and it’s resulting pathologies threaten the very existence of the Anglosphere. In response nationalists are on the march. Our principles guarantee social stability, cultural coherence and genuine unity – unlike globalist ideologies such as Multiculturalism which guarantee intractable social conflict. It is becoming increasingly apparent that ethnic, religious, political and sexual violence are the toxic fruits of ‘Diversity’ extremism. Only Nationalism has the necessary antidotes and political will to heal the deliberately induced polarisation and fragmentation of the Western world.
It’s an anti-immigrant white nationalist organization. I suspect that that’s what it was all along. But gosh, whining about the North American Free Trade Agreement is a nice distraction from the underlying motivation of the group.
It also has something in common with other far right groups: it’s primary business seems to be churning out propaganda, especially internet-digestible memes. Oh, look, they have black friends!
It’s even more blatant on the @ProjectAnglo twitter feed. Nothing but memes. They follow Ann Coulter, VDARE, Paul Joseph Watson, Katie Hopkins, James Delingpole, and a few cartoon frogs. You want to see the ugly underbelly of the internet, though, all you have to do is look at who is following them. Here’s a sampling of the profiles of typical pro Anglo Project supporters.
ᚹᚺᛁᛏᛖ᛫ᛈᚱᛁᛞᛖ, Nationalist,ProLife,Protector of Western Civilization’s EuroCentric Heritage, Identity & Traditions, ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ,ᛟPutinᛟLePenᛟCharles Martel
Right Wing Meme Squad. Supporter of ethnic cleansing- pls no bully meh.
🐸 Alt-Right. American Nationalist. Pro-White. Reactionary. #HailVictory
Rising sea levels can be attributed to Libtard tears, not global warming! I follow back to any Trump supporting patriots. I fully support Obama for prison!
Trigger the tards!! Wish my dad’s were Joe Rogan, Lawrence Krauss, and uncle Jordan b Peterson, aunt Camille Paglia, Princess Kenny. Kekistani Sith Lord
I really hope Krauss is embarrassed by the company he’s keeping there.
But the main point is that the economic jibber-jabber is just a mask over the real reason these people are pro-Trump and pro-America and pro-Britain — the truth is that they’re really just xenophobic, hate-mongering bigots who’ve found that complaining about free trade (not that there aren’t good arguments on that matter) is a sneaky way to virtue-signal to their fellow jingoists and start a racist asshat club. That’s what they are.
For some reason, “destroy my heritage” is never about the Dakota Access Pipe Line.
slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says
Right! It’s only “destroying MY heritage”, they “complain” about. Every other cultural heritage is valueless.
I cannot fathom the fear THEY have about every culture other than their own. Even the term “tribalism” is only jingo to me with little depth
Hardly anybody favors unrestricted immigration. Furthermore, it is unclear what is meant by diversity ideology, who holds that ideology, and what is bogus about it. And thirdly, what heritage is being destroyed and how, other than some white whiner seeing his white privileges challenged? All in all, this meme is a straw man so big it looks more like the wicker man.
I find it strange that they are so keen on their cultural heritage when they think that cultural heritage is so weak that it is threatened with destruction if other cultural heritages are allowed anywhere near it. But there, I’m a Brit who doesn’t recognse much of what they claim as the white British cultural heritage as reflecting my heritage, even though I am white. But then my heritage includes the workers that fought for and got weekends off, safety measures in factories and mines, better wages and the Welfare State among many many other things, the women that fought for the vote, for abortion rights, forequality and still do.
Like Breitbart, they seem to use “globalist” &c. when they want to write “the Jews” but don’t dare to be openly anti-Semitic.
Eh that got posted before I finished ranting on about my white heritage – it includes the people who have welcomed all sorts of refugees and immigrants to this country over the centuries, who have found friends in doing so and who far from being frightened of their various cultures have found knowing something of them an enriching experience. These people have small minds and small hearts, too wizened to expand, not understanding the value of the new.
David Marjanović says
In case anybody’s wondering, “ᚹᚺᛁᛏᛖ᛫ᛈᚱᛁᛞᛖ” is a really, really cute attempt to render white pride in runes by transcribing one letter after another.
David Marjanović says
Of course. “The international banks” has become too obvious.
It’s a bit naive to assume that 2 very different-looking things (one a push by rich, well-connected mainstream right wingers; the other an anonymous blog) separated by 17 years are the same thing because they use the same word in their titles.
The blog, despite an ‘about’ page saying it’s basically there for one guy to be a designer of flyers, is so shoddily put together that it’s ‘contact’ page still reads “This is a contact page with some basic contact information and a contact form.” it appears to have started in July 2017.
How good do you think the New Statesman’s time machine should have been in 2000, to foresee that some guy would call his far right nationalist blog “Project Anglosphere” in 2017, when they were writing about Black et al.?
FWIW, I’ve seen ‘Anglosphere’ used in between those dates. I teased some people using it in 2002 and 2003 (right wing nationalists) by noting they never bothered putting West Indian English-speaking countries in their list. When they suddenly dropped the Canadian flag from their logo for it, in favour of the Israeli one, on the grounds that Canada had refused to invade Iraq, it was clear they were just neo-colonialists, who dreamed of recreating the British Empire. They got chucked off a politics forum, even though it was run by right wingers, and formed their own, which faded away within a year or two.
“The US, Canada, Britain, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa and much of the West Indies […] enjoy […] a common culture”
Only if you ignore the French-speakers in Canada, the Maori in New Zealand, the Aboriginals in Australia and pretty much everyone in South Africa and the West Indies.
They have already lost but their death throes may do horrible damage.
As one data point, Statistics Canada, in the 2016 census, reports over 6 million immigrants in the country. A lot of the more recent arrivals are gasp not from anglophone or francophone countries!
Clearly we are doomed; doomed, I say to steadily increasing gastronomic confusion and a dilution of our sacred heritage of boiled potatoes, fried port belly, and canned cream corn.
These fools don’t seem to know any history or demographics since they, apparently, are stupid enough to equate the modern “nation” with one homogeneous language and culture group.They are consumed by their own myths.
The “economic” angle is a useful shortcut to luring impressionable people into racist and xenophobic movements; it’s easier to hate other people once you’re convinced they’re stealing something from you. And once you hate entire groups of people and define them as faceless races of enemies, it’s easier to be convinced that everything they have, even if not very much, is somehow rightfully yours instead.
I don’t know why we have to choose between economic anxiety and racism as explanations for the nastiness we’re seeing today. They’re both very real, and they intersect in a fairly obvious way. In times of economic crisis bigots tend to double down on their bigotry and use it as an explanation for why they’re in such dire straits. And the people who are responsible for the economic crisis benefit tremendously from bigots blaming immigrants and foreigners stealing our jobs, rather than blaming them for following the flawed profit motives of modern capitalism. It is no accident that big business benefited enormously during the Third Reich from the Nazi government’s economic reorganisation, premised on kicking the Jews out of industry and the professions.
We should recognise that it’s both. It’s always been both. Focusing on one to the exclusion of the other lets some very unpleasant characters off the hook.
“It really is all about race hatred”. True. And THAT is all about who likes to feel Superior and In Charge.
Some of these are willing to concede non-Angelo folk a tolerant few cents by assuring them they do fit into the Scheme of Things…as long as they know their place.
I am always amazed when I read or hear the hyperbolic arguments especially from the right-wing. That they are complaining about the the threat to society of disorder and destruction because, “cultural diversity”, immigration and integration, organized labor, free trade agreements even
when what they are offering as a solution that is supposed “save us” from all the dreaded dangers our common humanity and the inclusion of everyone as having a legitimate stake in society and how it is organized, What they advocate is division for its own sake, division with the goal of domination and control. All of conflict is coming from them. All of the destruction is the result of their resistance to the majority who do not want to be excluded and pushed to be some kind of subservient position to their superior one.
they use the language and try to use the tools of democracy to fight against liberty and equality in the name of unity. The whole argument stands on its head.
the “funniest” thing in all of this is the ones who cry the loudest are not the ones who benefit the most.
Azkyroth, B*Cos[F(u)]==Y says
“PHITM-CRIXM! (Pronounced like it’s spelled).”
Duth Olec says
I just want to say, “i support ethnic cleansing, also please don’t bully me” is one of the most hypocritical things I’ve seen, probably.
WMDKitty -- Survivor says
Of course. Because it’s not like these white doodz ever think, “hey, maybe my choice to be a racist shitsack is holding me back”, eh?
@7 If I see Viking runes on the internet these days I just assume it’s something to do with white supremacy.
A lot of the economic stuff probably is just a front for their racism, but why are these racist right wingers so dedicated to denying global warming? I have at least a few ideas;
– even if they aren’t really motivated by economic woes, they’re still deeply economically right wing and see any attempt to regulate industry for any reason as communism
– in their minds, caring for the environment makes you a liberal hippie
– they’re mindlessly opposed to anything liberals say
I’d rather form the humanist sphere.
BTW, Conrad Black ain’t a Canadian,
The Fuckwad Conman renounced his Citizenship for a British Lordship and a seat in the House.
When he got out of a US jail, Britain wouldn’t let him back in, but he somehow wound up in Canada, despite being a British citizen with a felony conviction.
We should have deported his ass back to Britain, and if they won’t take him, drop him in the water close to the Welsh Coast.
@19 And as an early medieval reenactor, that pisses me off. These arseholes come along and appropriate things like ‘viking’ runes and symbols, so now people even look at us with some skepticism (until they get to know us and see we’re nothing like that).
The HEMA community has some of the same problems, and the pushback from groups like FAR (Fighters against Racism) is great to see.
Meg Thornton says
Just for the sake of information: “wonky” in Anglo-English means “wobbly”, “off-centre”, “off-true”, and has connotations of “broken”.
Just putting that out there…
The “Anglosphere” is an ultra conservative fantasy, a straw for the Brexiters to grasp at and also known as “Empire 2.0” The “Anglosphere” nations might share a common culture, however their economic interests are widely divergent.
The British dumped the Commonwealth to join the EU, recently they have, apparently dumped the EU. The Anglosphere is just another example of British hubris.