The Magazine

The Myth of the Old Republic


Pat Buchanan expresses the hope that "in the womb of white America" a "new people is gestating and fighting to be born." He is convinced that Middle America is already "beginning to assert its identity, unapologetically" as an ethno-nation alongside African-Americans, American Indians, native Hawaiians, and Hispanics. 

In fact, what we are witnessing are the death throes of homo Americanus. Mr Buchanan recalls that another "new people ... the Americans" was born two hundred years ago in the colonial struggle to achieve independence from Great Britain. Then, the American Adam declared himself free of the excess historical baggage accumulated during the Dark Ages of Anglo-Saxon Christendom. Middle America is reaping the whirlwind sown in the revolutionary Enlightenment.

The Tea Parties are not symptoms of restored vigour in the body politic. Instead, middle-class white people, drawn mainly from the "founding race" of their senile, degenerate nation-state, are searching for a magic political elixir to bring the decrepit Constitutional Republic back to life.

Unlike Pat Buchanan, Jared Taylor doubts that Tea Party America represents a resurgent ethno-nationalism. but he's keeping an open mind. He acknowledges the implicit whiteness of the Tea Party movement, while noting that it shares that characteristic with opera companies and Renaissance festivals: "everyone there is white, and most like it that way but would never admit it -- even to themselves." America's pre-eminent racial realist will believe that the Tea Partiers are developing an explicit and unapologetic racial consciousness the day they "dump Sarah Palin and make Pat Buchanan their champion."

Despite their differences, both Pat Buchanan and Jared Taylor harbour the hope that racial identity will no longer be forbidden to whites in contemporary America. They also share a confused and confusing understanding of the relationship between racial consciousness, ethnic identity, and American nationality.

It is not at all clear, for example, whether the "embryonic people" who may be slowly awakening in the American heartland will be moved by racial or by ethno-nationalism. Both men employ the terms "racial identity," "racial consciousness," and "ethno-nationalism" almost as synonyms. 

Taylor implies that the Tea Partiers would show unmistakeable signs of both "racial consciousness" and "ethno-nationalism" were they "to echo the motto of the Vlams Belang Flemish-identity political party in Belgium -- "Eigen volk erst!" ("Our people first!") But, rightly or wrongly, that slogan surely was not meant to include the Walloon population of that country who are no less "white" than their Flemish fellow citizens.

Like everybody, Jared Taylor possesses both an ethnic identity and a racial identity.  Were he to rally the troops under the slogan "Our people first!" one wonders whether he would be addressing WASPs, or whites, or American citizens generally? His political role model, the Vlams Belang, seeks to secure an independent state for the Flemish people. But, surely no one expects Jared Taylor to call for the constitutional recognition of an exclusively Anglo-Saxon Protestant nation-state on American soil any time soon. 

Nor is it clear that he favours the creation of an explicitly white ethno-state. And Mr Buchanan does little to resolve such confusion. Having first bruited the possibility that white is becoming the new black, he concludes by claiming that the "coming conflict is not so much racial as it is cultural, political and tribal."

Of one thing we can be sure: the rise of a new tribalism within Middle America must signal the imminent demise of homo Americanus. That "new people" created by the Declaration of Independence boasted of their own immaculate conception and effectively excommunicated any and all forms of ethno-nationalism from the civil religion of the Constitutional Republic.

Shedding his ancestral allegiance to throne and altar, the American Adam sundered the transatlantic, Greater British, community of, blood and faith, memory and tradition.  All American citizens, whether of German or Huguenot, Dutch or Swedish ancestry, henceforth stood on an equal footing with the Anglo-Saxon Protestant majority population.

The American Republic did, indeed, create a new people but it was to be a people finding its poetry in the future not in the benighted past and outworn traditions of the Old World. The first new nation sneered at the "sectarian" ethno-patriotism characteristic of every "backward" province of Christendom born under the auspices of the early Church. Seeking a secular substitute for the age-old union of English blood and Christian faith, the American revolutionary regime invented a form of statist idolatry known as constitutional patriotism

At first, of course, America's constitutional faith was a "white" thing from which Indians and Negroes, whether slave or free, were almost entirely excluded. But its most avid acolytes were -- and are -- Anglo-Saxon Protestants whose fanatical devotion to the sacred cause of liberty, equality, and fraternity set them in permanent opposition, first, to racial slavery then to segregation and, finally, to discrimination and exclusionary practices generally. 

Anglo-Saxon Protestants in America ceased to be an ethno-nation; they found a novel civic identity anchored in the political theology of a federal republic. Although they enjoyed de facto political, economic, and cultural hegemony within the Constitutional Republic, people of British ancestry were never recognized de jure as members of America's founding race. 

When, following the Civil War, Anglo-Saxon Protestant opinion leaders in the progressive North made a colour-blind Constitution the touchstone of political decency it was inevitable that, sooner or later, other racial, religious, and ethnic groups would be admitted, along with women, to full membership in the Constitutional Republic.

Buchanan and Taylor still feel the need to wrap themselves in the foundation myth of the Old (White) Republic. Somehow, they hope, a return to a long-since superseded stage in the constitutional development of American civil religion will become possible. 

At the same time, by linking the Tea Party movement with the rise of a new tribe, Buchanan implicitly recognizes that the Constitutional Republic is no longer the exclusive property even of white America. But he must understand as well that, if there are to be white tribes, they will have to constitute themselves as autonomous loci of legitimate authority within civil society, outside, apart from, and even against the trans-national structures of state and corporate power. 

The USA is no longer an "Anglo-Saxon country." Inter-ethnic rivalry has become an inescapable fact of life for most Americans. But WASPs generally, and the Tea Partiers in particular, remain reluctant to play the postmodern game of identity politics, still preferring to think of themselves as the unhyphenated avatars of homo Americanus.

But WASPs, like other human groups, have distinctive biocultural interests. The refusal of contemporary American WASPs to recognize that obvious fact has transformed the complacent self-deception of their grandparents into outright ethno-masochism.  Sooner or later, they will have to defend themselves not just against such obvious enemies as the Congressional Black Caucus and the National Council of La Raza, but also against renegade kinsmen, not least of all the neocommunist leadership of the contemporary Church of England. It must never be forgotten that it was with the blessing of the Anglican and Episcopal Churches, that a spiritually enfeebled WASP governing class installed the worship of the Other at the core of America's constitutional faith. 

WASPs resigned their stewardship of the Constitutional Republic, suffering from the peculiar ethno-pathology that I call "Anglo-Saxon Anglophobia." America's constitutional faith turned into a secular parody of religion; the founders' reign of civic virtue degenerated into a racial spoils system in which fraud and deception became the norm; the federal republic morphed into a corrupt confederation of mutually antagonistic interest groups. 

For far too long, WASPs have treated their constitutional faith as a surrogate for their ancestral ethno-religious identity.  But WASPs can no longer depend upon the nation-state either as the fons et origo of their collective identity or as the guarantor of individual and collective security. 

Accordingly, heavily WASP Tea Partiers should aim not just to secure the survival of their widely-despised and resented ethny but to restore their former condition as a people of destiny.  Faced with the accelerating decay of the nation-state, American WASPs can still reconstitute themselves as local, resilient communities whose deep-seated biocultural affinities fit them to participate in a global network of Anglo-Saxon Christian tribes.

Less than a century ago Hilaire Belloc dared to describe The Jews as "an alien organism within the society they inhabit." He went on to propose that Jews should segregate themselves in their own communal institutions and public spaces -- for their own good as much as for that of the host culture. Needless to say, neither the Jews nor the English governing class took up his suggestion.

In our altered circumstances, it is time to revive and revise Belloc's Christian prescription for inter-ethnic peace. Over the past century, the world has been turned upside-down. Now, it is the WASPs, not the Jews, who "must foster, they must even propose, institutions which will better mark them off from a society not their own and restore to them the dignity of a nation."

The task of inspiring the regeneration of an Anglo-Saxon ethno-nation is one that must not be shirked by American WASP intellectuals and opinion leaders. Harold Cruse, easily the most incisive black-nationalist thinker of the Sixties, warned Anglo-Saxon intellectuals that their continued refusal to acknowledge openly the tribal identity of their group had "led this nation to the brink of self-destruction." The frantic spread of the Tea Party movement is but one more sign that homo Americanus finally fell off the cliff.


* * *

*  *  *  *

Thirty years ago, Peter Brimelow advised English-Canadians nationalists -- most of whom were WASPs -- that they should abandon the "patriot game" they had been playing for the past century. In Brimelow's view, the Canadian state is an artificial construction that is bound to fail: it makes no sense, he said, for English-Canadians to tie themselves permanently in knots in futile efforts to mollify Quebeçois separatists when their natural home is with their Anglo-American cousins in an Anglophone North American Republic. But Anglo-America has itself self-destructed -- and done so in the most spectacular fashion. Homo Americanus lies on his deathbed. Mr Brimelow may be loath to concede the point but the patriot game is up for American WASPs as well. 

Trapped in a zombie state, American WASPs should abjure the cult of the Constitutional Republic.  But, having lost faith in the myth of the White Republic, they must not succumb to their chronic ethno-anemia.  Even now, some WASP intellectuals conclude that because "my people gave away this country...they cannot take it back, nor do they deserve to get it back."

WASPs need to overcome such compulsive self-loathing. With the grace of God, they can develop a "fighting spirit" of their own.  To do so, however, they must abandon the secular faith of homo Americanus in the Constitutional Republic.  That is to say, deracinated WASP individuals must die to themselves in order to be reborn as members of Anglo-Saxon tribes steeped in the Old Faith of their forefathers. 

Men such as Jared Taylor, Peter Brimelow, and Richard Spencer should help their co-ethnics in the Tea Party movement to recognize that the American Revolution is over.  The American Constitutional Republic has transmogrified into the post-American, transnational corporate welfare state. We must expect that, from now on, ancestral bonds of blood, language, and religion between American WASPs and Anglo-Saxon Australians, the descendants of the United Empire Loyalists in English Canada, as well as their kith and kin in Britain will carry much more weight than any contrived connection to the many-hued, multiplying mass of miscellaneous Others transformed, by force of law, into their fellow citizens.

White nationalists urge WASPs to dissolve their ethnocultural heritage into the statistical aggregate that they label "European-Americans."  The fact is that all "white Americans," of whatever ethnicity, will be better off if their own kith and kin manage to reconstitute themselves into socially cohesive tribal networks.  Closely-related European ethno-nations, in turn, can enhance their economic and security interests through political alliances, commercial relationships, and cultural partnerships.  Every chain is only as strong as its weakest link.

WASPs, collectively, are now the 98 pound weakling sitting alone on the beach while other groups kick sand in his face.  In the aftermath of the soon-to-be failed American nation-state, it will be good both for the WASPs and for other "white peoples" if they start to muscle up.

Who knows?  There may yet come a time when Anglo-Americans, living amidst the ruins of the Constitutional Republic, proudly stand with their ethnic kinsmen "at home" and in the British diaspora to sing "God Save the King!"