Reminder: Moldbug is a cope peddler for the discerning customer. The standard story goes about two inferential layers deep. Moldbug goes about five. By contrast, the truth goes forever.
There is also something more here, which I can't put my finger on. Yet. I will keep picking at it until it comes to light. (P.S. I found something. Title's a hint.)
"Treat it as if it did not exist—as if no one had ever considered thinking in this strange way."
If you do this you will have no idea when you fail.
Fascism is seductive due to osmosis. Your parents are Fascists, all your friends are Fascist, your co-workers are Fascist, everyone you have to obey is Fascist, the grocery store clerk is Fascist, the store's music is Fascist, and let's allow Havel to remind us all their signage and posters are Fascist.
Fascism is also seductive due to being intentionally disguised. Parasites want you to think they're your friend. It's important to be able to pierce this camouflage. I use explicit verbal definitions. More on this at the bottom.
Reflexively, unconsciously, you develop a model of the minds around you. Fascism gets in. To get it out again, you need to recognize what must be shovelled out. Moldbug reads Noah Pinion, for god's sake. This is not treating Noah Pinion as if he didn't exist.
Thus Moldbug has failed his own prescription.
This is probably because Moldbug himself has no idea what he's saying. He certainly has no idea what he's thinking, or he would notice it's Fascist. This constitutes criminal negligence. He doesn't know because he hasn't checked. He hasn't checked because he senses he can't deal with what he would find. To withhold such a thing from his alleged allies constitutes not merely defection, but treachery.
That's about five inferential layers. But...let's not commit aposiopesis. Layer six: the representative Moldbug reader is not unaware of his treachery. They are in the market for being betrayed, as is traditional for American rightists. Naturally they don't consciously admit this to themselves, but it would be revealed by a little due diligence.
Checksum: do you think every Fascist is a rank fool? That they can't tell if you're faking your Fascist etiquette? To get along with these people, your Fascist etiquette must be quite real. You must put on the Fascist suit. Which means you need to know how to take it off again, which means knowing what it is.
Moldbug, by his own admission, rejects knowing what it is, which handily explains why he can't take it off.
We can see why Moldbug must make this particular deal with the devil. The Amish, who genuinely do treat Fascism as if it didn't exist, are not dissidents. By having isolated themselves, they make it likewise the case that Fascism can forget the Amish exist. Ref: Newton's third law.
You do set 1s (you are doing your reps, yes?) because it tells you about the domain of your solutions. Moldbug assumes isolation where no isolation exists, but this doesn't mean isolation is impossible. If you get off Twitter and Facebook, don't watch television, stop reading the newspaper or substack or medium or quillette, stop listening to music with words in - congratulations, Moldbug's prescription is just the thing. You can treat something as if it doesn't exist on the condition that, as far as your own practical purposes go, it does not exist.
Moldbug doesn't see anything wrong with pretending, and Satan is proud of him.
If you do your set 2s, you can feel that Moldbug's aura resonates with treachery, and trace that to his Fascism. When Yarvin wrote as Moldbug it was much, much weaker. Brown Scare may not be treacherous at all. It's in full bloom now, though.
Aside: we can see the creation/destruction asymmetry. Moldbug produces one line, the refutation is multiple paragraphs. Clearly the one line is working - substack helpfully ranks its magazines, and you can see many commentators taking it all seriously below these posts. All else equal the refutation will not work simply because it is longer.
"all of which are weird and feel weird to the user"
Well, I was going to be a dissident, but it felt weird so I guess I'll quit.
America is boned long-term due to biological shortfalls. America is boned short-term because of the above.
Perhaps the Regime doesn't persecute you because they know all it needs to defeat you is mild discomfort.
Probably due to Prussian schooling, every American has ADHD: unwilling to do anything unless there are tangible short-term rewards. This is what creates Moldbug's niche in the first place: the official narrative is geared for like, IQ 90, and due to Fascism they can't exactly segment the market. This produces cognitive dissonance, in other words, short-term pain. Moldbug relieves this pain, without requiring any, you know, actual work.
Basically I would like to see toy dissidence. Start small. Have a single forum - perhaps even simply confiscating someone else's forum - and declare it a no-Fascism zone. It would be properly passivist. More of a proof of concept. Build a prototype to find the flaws in the blueprint. However, this would naturally be unpaid. Doing it with Americans would herding cats, because they won't give up their support for 'universal education' by which they mean Prussian school.
I recently saw the line "we sold our digital inheritance for a few squirts of dopamine" which is darkly amusing. What, like Americans were ever not going to follow their base, childish impulses?
Moldbug sends his kids to school. Is he a blithering idiot? Or does he want his kids to be properly Fascist? But you know, very cool and very legal Fascists.
I mean, I can't blame him for trying. It does appear to be making money. Let's all agree I never have to take his poor gullible readers seriously, though.
I have very explicitly defined Fascism and leftism. Indeed, more than once. I spent years looking for inconsistencies and changing the definitions until I couldn't find inconsistencies anymore.
Because I'm autistic, I was at first fooled by everyone's assertion that they don't want to be Fascist. However, I still suspected. It felt off. Now I have the explicit definitions, I can prove that everyone saying they don't want to be Fascist is a liar. They're not interested in the definitions. You need the definitions to even know what you're trying to not-be. Success is impossible, especially with Fascism deliberately trying to hack in.
As a stupid example, maybe someone would try the definition, fail, and try again. Is this a superpower? Am I expecting something no normal human can possibly do? The failure comes from not attempting to try in the first place, and it's not attempted because they have no desire to reach the end of this path.
Which would be the other reason America is boned. They want Fascism, which means they will (and are) getting it good and hard. They pray to Gnon to grant them Fascism, and Gnon will generously provide.
Likewise, Chinese history can be summed up as praying to Gnon to be dominated by the person who is strongest in an immediate short-term sense. What else can Mandate of Heaven possibly mean? Gnon loves the Chinese also, and has affectionately granted their request.
Are you in the mood for some Buddhist compassion?
Moldbug feels he has no choice but to be treacherous. In his rational, considered opinion, he agrees with me - dissent has no place, no purpose, and no hope in modern America. Fundamental theorem of history: history repeats. Dissent didn't take down the Nazis. Nor the Commies. Nor Rome. It will be equally impotent here.
However, it is easy to let the blackpill seduce you into inaction. Moldbug doesn't know how. And wouldn't it be stupid if he were mistaken? Oh actually it would have worked if he just tried something. So, he tries something. He can't rationally convince himself, so he betrays his own judgment to accomplish this.
Unfortunately, this treachery gets thaumaturgically passed onto his readers. Still, he believes there are no options aside from either treachery or despair and paralysis.
Everyone has faith. Moldbug feels the treachery is a test of his faith. He maintains that, through mysterious ways, it will end up being not-treachery. If you had the option of seeing treachery as a test or seeing despair as a test, wouldn't you also pick action over inaction?
I know two ways to learn how to transmute a black pill into action.
One: take the black pill. The way out is through. You are mistaken about what it's like on the inside.
Two: discipline. Socrates questioned everything, and this is exactly correct. Is the black pill really black? How black? Black in what way? In this case, one can even slash the willpower required by directing one's base impulses for sedition and dissent towards one's own beliefs.
What might you learn doing this? Picking action over inaction is the Fascism talking again. Perhaps we can agree that it's contemptible to wait to be saved. Why not have faith the inaction is temporary? Why not have faith that the correct course of action will be revealed to you in time? In contrast, perhaps waiting to be saved is proper humility. Perhaps the test is this: when you can't do anything, are you capable of accepting your own impotence?
The only thing we can be sure of: you can't know in advance. Gnon does not answers prayers you do not speak. One must check.
Likewise, Moldbug's readers believe being betrayed is rational. They believe this, in short, because they are weak. Contra Yeshua, weakness is a sin. Until they repent, they are sinners, and damned. In theory it's possible for Americans to repent of their very American weakness. However, then they're not Americans anymore, and I've never witnessed one being willing to go that far. Cranking the compassion up a notch: it's true that profound repentance is difficult in the American case. They torture children on an industrial scale. It is no small sin, and should it be acknowledged it weighs profoundly on the conscience. Bit of a catch-22. They must repent to become strong, but must first become strong so they can repent.