Reactionary movements which fail to foster a reactionary ethos, including new approaches to the sciences and humanities, will ultimately fail.
Looking at the political works of Daniel Defoe, for example, we see Defoe understands the problem of a Restoration which does not purge the elites and functionaries of the 1688 revolutionary regime. By refusing to return against the Whigs everything they had done since 1642, the Queen Anne Tories fail to roll back any element of the liberal coups, and as J. G. A. Pocock demonstrates in his essay, “The Varieties of Whiggism from Exclusion to Reform,” the Tory Party evolves into simply another form of Whiggism by trailing behind the leftward motion of the Whig Oligarch regime. Country Tories adopted the Neo-Harringtonian language of the Yeoman-Farmer associated in America with Jeffersonianism, such that both Throne and Altar Toryism and Radical Republicanism become indistinguishable in terms of rhetoric.
This is one of the reasons that meliorism is a fatally flawed approach to Restorationist politics; relying on Trump to move the frame to the right, to include the next person who can move the frame to the Right, ignores the fact that the whole political world rotates left due to entropy. The only objective movement toward order and sustainable politics is a hard reset built on principles of nature. The failures of the English in 1660 and the French in 1814 and 1852 demonstrate the weakness of a Restoration without a fundamental reorientation of society.
Gnon, taken figuratively, should be a central element to any kind of Restorationist thought. If the whole of society is going to be reset against the objective standard of Gnon, work needs to go into a Gnon-focused science of human beings. This means studying man as he is, not as one wishes him to be, and to take a hard, clear look at successful and unsuccessful ways of organizing human societies. The only means we have to deal with this problem, however, are historical, and one of the fundamental problems of history is that it is not objective, but tainted by the perspective of the victors. Victory is not necessarily a sign of success, as Machiavelli pointed out in his comparison of Rome and Venice. Rome was glorious and it was victorious but it was incapable of sustaining itself in its success. Venice was less glorious and less successful but maintained their system of government far longer than the Roman Republic, hence the title Serene Republic of Venice.
What, then can we use as a source of the laws of Gnon in our Restorationist study of human and social sciences? History is not useless, but needs to be sifted against the Whig revisionism which perverts its lessons. A purer form of ancient knowledge could perhaps be Indo-European comparative mythology. Mythology is not a pure fantasy but a means by which to transfer hard-won truths about nature through a narrative built on distinct principles of epistemology. A story is true, not if it literally happened in history, but if the lesson imparted by the story is true; this is the appropriate mindset to approach all forms of mytho-religious texts. “Did it really happen” is the meaningless question of a stunted, reductionist mind limited to materialist epistemologies. “What reality does this convey” is the thoughtful approach.
A warning before I begin: allegoresis is laziness of the imagination and the resort of limited minds. A symbol, person, or idea, can mean many things which may be mutually incompatible yet all necessarily true. Our limited and reductionist ontology limits our horizons, yet does not limit the writers of the great myths. We must be open to their wisdom, not try to reduce their vision to the level of our half-blind faculties.
One of the core insights of Indo-European thought is the role of the Castes in maintaining human order. The fundamental inequality of man in this world rests at the center of the Indo-European perspective on the human sciences. It is interesting that Moldbug perceived this core characteristic within modernity as well, dividing American society into Brahmins and Vaisyas (and presumably the Shudras underclass). Georges Dumazil calls this inherent division the Trifunctional Hypothesis, namely that all Indo-European societies divide themselves according to social function into a series of castes and that this division is the foundation of all civilized society. The foundation myths which Dumazil highlights for these purposes involve three brothers, who illustrate the concept that before society can be organized, the world must be divided between them. Derivations of this myth can be found in the division of jurisdiction between Zeus, Poseidon, and Hades, or the Three Horatii, as Dumazil relates these to the foundation of the ruling castes. In the Germanic tribes, the Priest and Warrior Castes merge together into the familiar Jarl-Karl-Thrall or Eorl-Ceorl-Theow society of the Nobles, the Free Men, and the Slaves which more closely resembles Moldbug’s model than the Indian system.
Plato, also, draws upon this myth in the Republic, where he describes the Myth of the Metals. According to Plato, the ideal Republic requires a myth which divides the people into disparate classes based on the “metal” in their soul, which would be determined by the authorities through a regime of testing. If one was found to have a “gold” soul, one is elevated to the ruling class. An “iron” soul was that of the soldiers while a “bronze” soul was that of a laborer. Plato explained that while one’s “metal” was usually inherited, the testing regime was founded to sort out the odd character who differed in character from his parents.
So what is the point of this discussion? Functional ancient societies had caste systems. What does this mixture of mythology and history have to do with modernity? Using our mythopoetic method, we can derive from these myths the lesson that social divisions based on a hierarchy of function are a significant force in stabilizing societies. Let us apply this insight to a particular modern issue in need of Gnonish reform.
The education system in the West is built on two principles: the “blank slate” theory of human neurological uniformity and the industrial theory of production applied to the student. The first has been bashed enough that I don’t feel the need to add to this discussion. The latter is the following assumption: given that all students are identical blank molds, a standardized, assembly-line model for education will turn them all into uniform citizens of the state’s general design, given the normal rate of industrial defects. Each student is put through 12 assembly “stations” where each are subject to the same treatment aiming at a model 18-year-old who should have the attributes specified by the educational plan and be ready for integration into the workforce or further technical education. Standardized Testing is simply a type of Quality Assurance and most educational reform today are derivative of Continual Process Improvement models which seek to reduce outliers in the manufacture of young people.
This is why there is such emphasis on uniformity and universality in education today by policy experts; uniformity and universality are ways to achieve the lowest rate of manufacturing defect in a mass-produced product. The education system is both a reflection of the basic political assumptions of the regime and a reinforcement of those assumptions, pumping out class after class of homogeneous, uniform cogs for introduction into the factory of the economy.
I’m sure someone could write a dozen pages bashing this approach, but my interest here is less in critique than demonstrating a new approach. Take our lesson from above: societies should be stratified by a hierarchical organization of function-based roles. From our exploration of the past, we can assume that this lesson is as close to conformity with the laws of Gnon as we can be, given limited human faculties. As a reactionary, my rule is that my policy must be as closely conformed to the laws of Gnon as possible, given relevant circumstances. Education reform, therefore, should be organized around a three-tiered system which focuses on the function of the student in society.
For example, let us imagine a school system which provides basis literacy and mathematics from K-8. At 8th grade, a state-administered test divides students into two categories: Shudras and forward-castes. Shudras are given two to three years of education in various manual skills and then sent to employment. The forward-castes are given four more years of schooling in logical, mathematical, scientific, and philosophic arts before being administered a second test, in which they are divided between Vaisyas and Brahmins. The former are given education in management, technical expertise, engineering, and the practical STEM fields, while the latter are sent to an elite school to study law, administration, policy, and governance, similar to the Grandes Ecoles in France.
This system resembles Plato’s education and preserves a three-caste system which undergirds most Indo-European societies thus will likely demonstrate better outcomes in education. Rather than a high school diploma that guarantees a life of poverty in the USA today, the poor student will be certified in at least one area of skilled labor, depending on his motivation and performance in his last few years of education. The higher-performing students are freed from 4 years of wasted time in high school, where they are being held back by the slow students, because they are free to study the higher subjects which prepare them for real achievement at the college level.
Educational divisions create social division; we now have a eucivic and eugenic caste structure because people largely marry those who they go to school with. Certainly, we can discuss sex segregation and the role of women at the Vaisya and Brahmin institutions; should women be admitted for the purposes of seeking their MRS degree, or should they be banned altogether? Certainly, this depends on various other social institutions and how matchmaking functions in a reactionary society.
The details here are not important, really, since history rarely follows along such clean, pat little plans as these. What will happen will occur as a result of various, unpredictable forces in collision.
I can already hear the engineers howling about demotion from the Brahmin, but the point of this article is not the practice of education but a new way of thinking about policy reform beginning with the principles of Gnon.
From an extrapolation of the Laws of Gnon, we can construct policy proposals which exist in conformity with reality. This is the seed of a reactionary social science. If the regime topples today, who will be equipped with the tools to erect functional institutions? These tools can’t be left in the hands of the leftist elites, who merely double-down on the bad science that got society in its current condition. Reaction needs to be a complete worldview, not a boutique for edgy commenters. A Science of Gnon is part of that.