Many mildly hyperopic social commentators have opined that the graph below portends more misery, conflict, and decay across the Western world than any other evolving issue.
There is no doubt they are mostly correct given the already enormous upheaval in Europe from just the first thin edge of this massive migration ax. But, as the last week has vividly displayed, there’s a far more foreboding image before us.
Humans are herd animals, and vary little more in their group instincts than a stampede of wildebeests. Again and again the graph above manifests itself in hysterias across time and place. Whether politics, social movements, or asset bubbles, the same contours consistently reappear.
The predictable trajectory of these graphs are largely a function of the phenomenon of social viscosity. For those aren’t familiar, here’s a cribbed definition of the term.
Viscosity is a measure of a fluid’s resistance to flow. It describes the internal friction of a moving fluid. A fluidwith high viscosity resists motion because its molecular makeup gives it a lot of internal friction. A fluid with low viscosity flows easily because its molecular makeup results in very little friction when it is in motion.
In a social sense, viscosity represents the degree of friction–or resistance–to an agenda or movement. Compare the speed and efficiency of swimming through water versus quick sand. The same energy output that produces a 100ft of lateral movement in one may result in nothing but a smothering death in the other.
One can consider the advancement of political agendas as a function of cumulative action minus environmental viscosity. As friction agents are removed, effort begins to translate more directly into effect. As a result, previously restrained horizontal movement along the x axis begins to turn vertical on the y.
For the political right, social viscosity varies between extremely high and practically absolute. The entertainment, academic, and media industrial complexes represent perpetual pillars around which social viscosity forms against the right. And now we may add to that both political parties, GloboCorp, the vast state bureaucracy, and Churchianity in addition. All of these institutions present implacable friction to even the slightest right-wing advancement, no matter how much support of the mere people it may enjoy.
Thus even actions of enormous and unlikely success (such as electing a rogue semi-populist and giving him two ostensibly conservative houses of Congress) can result in a breaking downward trend, as action is counterbalanced by even greater resistance. E.g., who would have ever imagined that 10 months after Trump’s victory, marauding far-left mobs would be in absolute control of the streets? Despite its electoral victory, institutional viscosity has produced quicksand on the right.
In contrast, the left is (by my debatable reckoning) now entering that bleak inflection point where effort immediately becomes effect. They want an artifact destroyed, it is promptly destroyed. In stock market frenzies this happens when the last bears and skeptics capitulate and join the bulls. Thus every equity purchase incrementally bids up the stock with no sellers in sight. The share price quickly turns vertical.
This is what effectively has taken place politically over the past week. Practically every institution of consequence has either announced full throated support of the left or is hiding in capitulation. There are no Bolshevik bears. Of course there remain republicans who, as the nominal bulwarks of viscosity against this flow, have spent their last capital consecrating the communists. Thus devoid of friction, the left’s social graph has bent steeply north. You may expect dizzying and ruthless progress going forward as a result.
Those who particularly enjoy the frisson of horror may think of this week’s rout as only the initial incline on the cultural revolution’s slope. Maybe some effective viscosity agents will rally on the right to grind the left’s gears. Or maybe progs will reevaluate the prudence of their customary forays into miserable totalitarianism. But if I have given you hope for either of these possibilities, then I have left little for myself.
That is because mere citizens have very quiet voices when talking about the trajectory of their society. If you want to destroy opposing viscosity agents, you better run a technology behemoth. If you want to establish social policy, you better have five black robes. If you want to deploy a police department against your enemies, you better have a black panther vice mayor. Having good people, consistent ideas, and witty memes are moral victories, but not practical ones.
As an example consider the poll below.
Only 27% of
Americans those living in America believe confederate statues should be removed. Well that’s nice; they’ll be gone by October. The people only get a vote in choosing who will choose; they have nothing to say in the choice itself. And our choices of who will choose have not reflected particularly well on our own interests.
As a result we have a very unpleasant road to travel, with no traditional buses in which to ride. The long march through the institutions was a successful flanking maneuver around a somnolent population. A population who is now awaking to a duplicitous media, a malicious tech oligarchy, an academia that produces antifa drones off an assembly line, and political representation that is desperate to get on the other side.
If you’d like one piece of advice, it would be to leave the churches that have left you, support the few businesses that have not, and find presentable candidates to primary practically every republican. By next November, I imagine most incumbents will be signaling their support for the Zebra murders.