Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Right Club


I am not a Conservative. Sometimes I have used the term loosely, especially when I was first called to on publicly to classify myself. I have since been as circumspect as possible in using the term about myself. I say: I am a man of the Right

Whittaker Chambers.
 One of the things that became apparent in reading Weaver's, Right Wing Critics of American Conservatism, is that "membership" of the Right was predicated primarily on being in opposition to the Left. I don't want to blame Weaver too much for this approach, since it is pretty much reflects the mainstream understanding of the Left/Right dichotomy. Weaver attempts to give the division some more philosophical rigor by placing the divide along the lines of those who oppose the idea of equality--the Right--and those who embrace it, i.e. the Left.

If you think about it, there are several serious problems with this approach.

Firstly, it tends to make the Left the reference metric with regard to the determination of the Right and by definition "frames" our understanding of the Right by defining it as NOT(Left). Now the Left understands itself as the only true revolutionary force and that its all of its opponents are reactionary elements hence, anyone who rejects the Left's definition of itself is automatically a Rightist. This also includes Leftist sectarians who are "not with the Program." Stalin, for example, was intellectually consistent from a Left perspective when he claimed that Trotsky, who was not with the program, was a fascist.

Unfortunately given the Leftward drift of our societies, this view is given a lot of mainstream credence, even amongst the unthinking Right, so that anyone "who is against them is with us". Or, in other words, we don't punch to the Right--that is the Right as defined by the Left. Part of the reason why this approach works is that human psychology judges on the appearance and not the substance and as long as progressivism can be given a "Right" veneer, it will be understood by the Lumpenproletariat as "Right Wing".

Take Fascism for instance, the Left defines it as a Right wing phenomenon, and intuitively it feels so, however upon closer scrutiny, we see from a study of history is of Fascism is that it is a heresy that arose from Socialism, its bastard child, so to speak, and therefore shares the same genetics. On the other hand, throne and altar Integralism arises from a totally different intellectual lineage which is opposed to the fascists/socialist DNA. Yet under a Left mandated taxonomy it puts both of them in the same camp.

But suppose we made the reference metric Traditionalism instead of Leftism, then the worlds ideologies could be divided into those which are traditional and those which are progressive. Under this metric both Fascism and Socialism are seen as part of the same progressive grouping.

Indeed, where one sits on the political spectrum is dependent on what one uses as a measuring stick. Unfortunately, for the Right, we've been quite happy to use other peoples metrics to define ourselves and this I believe has seriously hampered our ability to fight back, since many of our percieved allies have ultimately undercut us either explicitly or by being based upon a philosophical systems which are ultimately mutually incompatible. NeoConservatism, for example, has its philosophical roots in the Left and its triumph over Paleoconservatism shifted the Conservative establishment to the Left.

Secondly, by failing to define what it means to be "Right wing" on its own terms has meant that the Right has been awful in its discrimination when it come to choosing allies with who to fight the Left.

Take for example the Spencerian Alt Right. Spencer's advocacy of ethnic nationalism appealed to many people, as it does to me to a certain degree, but underlying philosophy which motivated Spencer is opposed to any type of  Western Tradition. His advocacy of abortion, his anti-Christianity, his tolerance of sexual degeneracy and his genetic determinism are staples of progressive thought which has more in common with the Left than the Traditional Right. Should the broader Alt-Right have won any battle it soon would be in conflict with the Alt-Reich for control and the movement as a whole would self destruct. My opposition to Spencer was the he was a Leftist in Right wing clothing.

What I think is most important task for the Right, at the moment, is to define itself explicitly. I've got a couple of suggestions, but before I do that, I want to return to Weaver's understanding of the Right as being those who are opposed to equality.

Why, exactly, is the Right opposed to equality? I personally don't think that it is a result of simple value preference, rather, the empirical experience of life demonstrates the manifest fact of inequality.  In other words, the Right believes in inequality, because human inequality is a TRUTH of life.

The concept of TRUTH is the core of the Left-Right divide, both in its understanding of what constitutes the TRUTH and the willingness to bend the knee to it. Quite simply, to be a man of the Right it means to believe and bend the knee to the TRUTH. To be a man of the Right it means living as if the TRUTH matters.

Now the Philosophical treatment of the concept of the Truth is beyond the scope of this blogpost but if I had to define what it means to belong to the European Right, as understood for the last two millennia, I would say the following;

Firstly, a belief in a reality that exists outside of ones self.
Secondly, a belief that the totally of reality that is only partially perceptible (i.e a rejection of Positivism)
Thirdly, of that which is perceptible, the truth of empirical observation.
Fourthly, the validity of logic and reason.
Fifthly, a belief in a Christian God, which as a result of our limitation to fully perceive reality, has given knowledge of Himself and His wishes through the act of revelation.

European Civilization rests on these five points. Reject any one of these and you're not a man of the European Right.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

The Death of the Alt-Reich



I've got to admit that I had a feeling that Trump would disown the Alt-Reich. I'm also of the opinion that Steve Bannon advised him to do it, not that I think it would have taking much prompting, since I'm also of the opinion that Trump would have found them personally repellent.

Back in 2008, when Paul Gottfried first coined the term Alternative Right, the alternate Right he was envisioning was an intellectually serious, politically active counterforce to the GOP establishment which had essentially been taken over by the Neocons. Gottfried's Alt-Right, I imagine, would be a more intellectually aggressive and politically active form of Paleoconservatism.

Spencer probably coined the term Alt-Right independently for his vision of the Right. But his vision, while promoting "white interests" seem to be far too comfortable with Fascism, anti-Christianity, materialism and 1488 crowd. Spencer the defended the quasi Nazi "pranks" of his followers with same plausible deniability with the same credibility as the New York times defended its objectivity with regard to the Presidential election.  For those who could see, it was bullshit, for those who wanted to believe, it was truth.

Part of the problem with using the same name for two different concepts is that amongst the proletariate is that semantic conflation occurs, so that everything blurs into one. To informed insiders, there were different elements of the Alt Right. To normies, the Alt-Right was just one group with a strong sympathy for the 1488'ers. It appears that it was the strategy of the 1488'ers to encourage this conflation so as to appear bigger than what they were. Unfortunately, many of the lowbrows in the Alt-Right seemed quite happy to go along, as "there were no enemies to the right".

Unfortunately, this attitude betrays a lack of understanding of what the 1488 crowd are about and reflects poorly on the intellectual aptitude on many who were sympathetic to it. Fascism, in all its variants is a modernist movement designed to appeal to right wing instincts, whilst Socialism is a modernist movement designed to appeal to left wing instincts. Both movements aimed to destroy traditional society and any conservative movement that wishes to embrace modernism is on a path to self destruction. In many ways, Fascists were the original Neocons and it was quite embarrassing to see just how many were willing to embrace right feels Modernism v2.0.

I'm proud to say that this blog called them out from the outset.

I've got to admit that whilst I disagreed with Spencer's politics I was impressed with his media acumen. But his "own goal" over the weekend simply astounded me. I could not believe he was so stupid.  His acolytes are now claiming he was framed but the fact of the matter is instead of telling his supporters, to "knock it off because some people won't understand the irony", when they did the Nazi Roman salute, he raised his glass to them. It was another Aleppo moment, mein Gruppenfurher. I couldn't believe he was that stupid.

At worst, I think he calculated that the time was right and he was hoping for it to be his Natsoc "coming out" moment, at best it was media naivety of the highest order. Did he expect the media to play fair? Didn't he expect the media to put plants in the audience? Doesn't he know how the Cathedral operates?

The Hail Trump moment pretty much sealed the fate of the Alt-Reich /Right by permanently allying it with the Nazi cause.  The optics, recored for posterity and reply to argument, will forever condemn it.  A Alt-Reich will remain as there are plenty of stupid people out there, but the legitimacy it was gaining has been completely lost.

Stick a fork in it, it's done.

BTW.  Ramzpaul, who has no link whatsoever with the blog, put up a very good video on the subject.  It's definitely worth a view.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Right Wing Critics of American Conservatism

I've just finished George Hawley's, Right Wing Critics of American Conservatism and would like to say that this is a really good book. Its main emphasis is on non-mainstream American Conservatism post WW2 with some mention of pre-War thinkers. It covers a lot of ground, and it covers it succinctly. Most of all it gives, each of the movements, I feel, a fair hearing and accurate rendition of their main personalities and ideas. I think anyone looking to get a good broad overview of the subject would not go wrong with this book.

But I think the book is also valuable for Hawley's own input into the subject matter since I think his survey quite accurately identifies several problems which still beset "the Right".

What's becomes apparent upon reading the book, is that the non-mainstream Right is composed of various disparate groups whose philosophical positions are sometimes contradictory and incompatible. So Hawley's first problem is how to define the common doctrinal tenet in all these groups. Hawley comes to the conclusion that what separates the Right form the Left is the Right's rejection of the notion of equality, a notion which is the central tenet of the Left. Personally, I've got a couple of problems with this approach. Firstly, I think it a too superficial analysis which leads one to the conclusion that the battle between Left and Right is a battle between the preference for equality or its opposite.

Secondly, it does tend to put together, "under one tent" groups which are otherwise intrinsically opposed to one another. Paleoconservatives and American Nazi's are both considered right wing, yet both have visions which are incompatible with each other. This has been a fundamental problem which I feel has seriously hampered the Right in its ability to combat the Left.

As things stand, membership of the Right Club seems to be premised on the notion of being anti-Left. In other words, it's a reactionary anti thesis to the Left's ideas. This, of course, "frames" the right in Leftist terms and cripples the Right by allowing any idiot who is opposed to the Left, no matter how stupid the reason, into the Club. A great example of this are the National Socialists, who get lumped as Right wing despite the fact that their ideological heritage is more in common with socialism and the French Revolution than with Burke.

Pragmatically, what this means is that the Right is frequently allied with forces which turn against it at a critical moment, stabbing it in the back, the Neocon revolt against Trump being an example of this. (Many of whom voted for Hillary).

The membership problem needs to be resolved.

The other issue that Hawley identifies in his survey is the gradual decline in highbrow conservative publications and thought. It sad fact that the public space has been seriously dumbed down but do I think he is onto something here. However, given the dramatic rise of the internet, most of the good stuff is happening on-on line. But as Hawley notes, most public discussion when it comes to conservative issues is done through the shock jocks and media presenters and he laments that there has been a decline in the quality of public space Conservative thought.

Still, I think he missed what I regard as the greatest new development in Conservative thought--the Manosphere--and totally underestimated its significance. The manosphere, as far as I'm concerned, is the only area where conservative thinking is quite alive and active at the moment. The sexual dystopia that we live in has, in many ways, been abetted by traditional western thought. Poisoning Eros did not just reduce lust but it also neutered sexual polarity and fueled the feminist revolution. When sexual identity is defined by moral virtue instead of erotic ones, the biological nature of the actor sort of becomes irrelevant and split is unintentionally encouraged between biological fact and human actor.  The Manosphere is a corrective to this thought since it teaches that biomechanics puts real limits on sexual polarity.

Overall, I think, his charge is justified. Neoreaction--at least to me--seems to have stalled for the moment and I think and more active presence would be a corrective to this dearth of new ideas.

Finally, Hawley points to the demographic challenges facing Conservatism. Hawley notes that the vehicle for Conservative values seem to be, by and large, Older White Males. Given the demographic reality we live in and the decline in Conservative values among the young, Hawley paints a bleak picture of Conservatism's future.

As said before, it's a good book which gives a good and easily readable survey of post World War Two non mainstream conservatism. Thoroughly recommend it. Five Stars.



Thursday, November 10, 2016

The Middle American Revolution

It's a shame that Sam Francis was not alive to see Donald Trump's victory. More than anyone else, he had discerned the hurt and pain which was being felt by America's yeomanry since the 1980's. In his small way, through pen, article and book, he  tried to educate Americans about their predicament and motivate them to resist. During his lifetime, his efforts were in vain. Rather, it took eight years of Communist  Democrat governance to final motivate them.  Trump's victory was  in effect, a vindication of his views, especially the belief that the Republican "Neo-Con" approach to politics was wrong. Trump's strategy, which was essentially textbook Francis, delivered spectacularly.

Trump by any considered deliberation is a flawed candidate, who in normal times would never have achieved what he did, except that these are not normal times. Middle America was looking for a saviour, the threat to its existence being palpable, that it was prepared to overcome his history and his all-to-clear faults and chose him, to the surprise of the World, in preference to the diabolical harridan. By appealing to middle America, Trump was able to defeat--against impossible odds--the combined media/establishment collusion. 

As an Australian, U.S. politics affects me in an indirect, if real way. Yet, I've got to admit, this election has given me more anxiety than any here in Australia. Like many other commentators, I felt that this was America's--and therefore the West's--last chance. I think had the Harridan won, the U.S. would have crossed a precipice from which it would have been impossible to recover. Christian persecution would have ensured and a demographic flood that would have been unleashed that would have drowned what remained of the bourgeois, Middle American culture. America would have remained as a geographical entity but it would have transformed into something altogether unrecognizable. I think many Church leaders realised this as well and there was palpable sense of fear among some. For the first time ever in my memory, when the prayers of the faithful were being offered in my local Catholic church, a "non political" prayer was offered in support of Trump.

This election was THAT important.

Trump's victory was therefore not just a big f**k you to the establishment but a deliverance from what was sure to be a persecution of Christians, the beginning of which was started under the Obama administration. Still there needs to be pause. Whilst we were not pushed over the edge, both the U.S.--and Western Civilisation--still stands at that precipice, and unless the Trump administration actively goes out to destroy the institutional structures which turned against middle America and its cultural foundations, all this election amounts to is a stay of execution.

Sam Francis initially had great hopes for the Reagan Revolution but was dismayed as the enthusiasm and energy of that movement was co-opted and decapitated by the politics and machinations of the managerial state. By the time Reagan left office, the state was bigger, more intrusive and less accountable. Regan, in many ways, built the state structure which was co-opted by the Democratic Left and later used to crush middle America.

Francis recognised that in order for any Middle American Revolution to succeed it had to dismantle the managerial state--insofar as it was feasible--and deliver power back to America's traditional bourgeois class. Failing to do so would simply result in a resumption of persecution with the next turn of the political cycle. Unless the Trump presidency is led and guided, it too risks being a Reagan v2.0. What gives me a lot of hope is Trump's reputation of not forgetting his enemies. He has also been given control of Congress and the House of Representatives.

I say "led and guided" quite seriously because as a result of this election, official "Conservatism" is dead, and a new one needs to take its place. The internet, and not the mainstream media, is now the forum of ideas and it's quite surprising to see just how influential it has been, especially with regard to the "Right". Trump, also, seems to have grasped its influence.

Its not the purpose of this post to give a detailed program but "culture management" and "power limitation" are the keys to enduring victory.  Leviathan needs to be hacked to pieces and it should be the role of the dissident Right to push the Administration in the right direction. For example, some of the ways which the Administration could dismantle leviathan is by;
1)Stopping the Federal subsidy of the Left. Defund and Tax the Humanities departments. Move them physically into minority areas and only provide "conditional funding". Make Humanities degrees conditional on completion of a STEM qualification and so on.

2)Break up the media monopolies. Recognise that the internet is now a utility and needs to be regulated as such. Break up Google, Facebook, Twitter etc.

3) Make it a Federal offense to mislead in journalism.

4) Decentralise, Decentralise, Decentralise. Only allow at Federal Level what can't be done at local.
5) Reverse the "Demographic Engineering" of the Left. Unchecked migration had the synergistic effect of dropping labour costs and turning the country "blue". It doesn't have to be done inhumanely. i.e. If your an undocumented immigrant you can stay but no citizenship rights and so on. Undocumented migrants should be housed in "Blue" areas since these people are more accepting of minorities.

6) Leave religion alone. Don't promote it, don't hinder it and so on.

7) Carbon tax on newsprint.
This has been, in terms of political drama, THE. BEST. ELECTION. EVER.  But I have often felt that given the apparent insurmountable odds faced by Trump, there has been something of the Divine active in the affairs of men. To quote Roissy;
I’m not a religious man, but it seems to me the Hand of God is guiding this election, and that He has notarized The Trumpening. The tragedy that accompanies this view is that even with God handing them every reason to vote Trump, a large group of Americans sees fit to defy His magnanimity. Well, the unwoke are about to be smote.
In Catholic circles we are currently in the Year of Mercy. I think we have been given--what many intelligent non-believers also believe--is one last chance.  We can't afford to stuff this one up. The gloves are off, it's a grab for power.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Understanding the Trump Phenomenon



BTW, this could probably be one of the best political commercials ever.  Narrated by Michael Moore himself.

I love seeing the beast being turned onto itself.

Spread the word.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Janus

An even deeper source or socialist resistance to the syncretic 'Marxist' approach to fascism proposed here may be that it implies a far closer and more uncomfortable affinity between fascism and communism in practice than most Marxists would like to acknowledge. As forms of political modernism, both offered totalising solutions to the problem posed by the decadence of liberal society, which were outstanding specimens of the application to socio-political engineering of the "historical predictions' that Karl Popper identified with his concept of 'historicism' - a curious reversal of the connotations given the term by Benjamin - and with the mainspring of totalitarianism. In both cases, time utopia of a new society was formulated by blending scientific and technocratic discourse with mythic thinking, thereby producing that characteristic ideological product of modernity, `scientism'.' Both, when implemented, spawned an elaborate 'political religion' and, in their Nazi and Stalinist versions, provided tilt rationale for mass murder on an industrial scale,

One of the reasons I'm hostile to the alt-Reich--as opposed to the Dissident Right--is because it's a false hope for the Dissident Right and which will ultimately undermine it. And the reason why it will ultimately undermine it is because the Alt-Reich's father is Marx himself. Unlike the Left, whose danger to the Right is self evident, the Alt-Reich is a much more subtle foe, masquerading as an ally when in reality it's a disguised version of the enemy. This may seem difficult to comprehend as the Alt-Reich espouses many of the ideals of the Dissident Right, such as ethnic homogeneity, sexual polarity and border control but these views arise from a totally different metaphysical system to that which "powered" the Old European Civilisation and therefore represents a break from it. Put simply, the all the versions of Fascism, from "soft" to "hard" are essentially Modernist political ideologies and therefore are the kindred spirits of Marx.

Part of the problem in understanding Fascism and its variants is due to the historical treatment the subject has received. Jewish scholars have tended to give it a Semetic spin, whilst Marxist scholars have tended to see it as a bourgeois reactionary phenomenon. The problem is that these perspectives are wrong. Spanish and Italian Fascism did really care much about the Jews whilst all the parties claimed to act in the interest of the workers and were initially largely supported by them. The bottom line is that these perspectives are wrong.

Perhaps the world's foremost academic expert on the subject of Fascism is Roger Griffin, whose academic work has changed the contemporary for understanding of Fascism. To put it briefly, Fascism is the syncretist product of "Right wing feels" and the philosophy of modernity. i.e. modernism/positivism. It's a different version of modernity to that offered by the Left but all the same, it is a rejection of the past. From Griffin's, A Fascist Century.
This is not to be taken as unqualified endorsement of the view that Hitler was a conscious moderniser, which has been argued by some scholars. His basic obsession was not with modernising Germany, but with eradicating the nexus of forces to which he attributed its collapse (Zusammenbruch) and dissolution (Zersetzung). While he admired American technology, he loathed the multi-racial liberalism and materialism it embodied, and strove to turn Germany into the heart of a European empire based on crude racist and Social Darwinist principles for the triumph of the fittest. But while Ian Kershaw is right to criticise Zitelmann's thesis it is still appropriate to see Hitler's vision as an alternative, and (no matter how perverse and unrealisable) a revolutionary version of modernity, rather than the expression of anti-modernity or 'reactionary modernism'. It is a palingenetic utopia (indissociable in retrospect from the horrendous dystopian implications of its actualisation) which reverberates in Hitler's words on the occasions where he privately gave vent to his deepest convictions; 'Those who see in National Socialism nothing more than a political movement know scarcely anything of it. It is even more than a religion: it is the will to create mankind anew'.

Hitler's project for the renewal of European civilisation - its transformation into a genuine Kultur - under German hegemony involved a wholesale rejection of many aspects of the modern (indeed when he used the term it was with negative connotations). However, not only was this project entirely reliant for its realisation on all aspects of modernisation able to be co-ordinated with Hitler's larger palingenetic aim, but the aim itself was inconceivable without such quintessentially modern forces as massification, social engineering, bureaucratisation, rationalisation, the technologisation of warfare, Social Darwinism, nationalism, racism, and charismatic power. Furthermore, its focus was the quintessentially modern form of power assumed by the nation-state. ...............At the root of the Holocaust was the state-led drive for a fully designed, fully controlled social world, of a society lovingly tended and ruthlessly pruned by the 'gardening state'. So far the forces of pluralism at work in modern society have conspired to prevent such biopolitical projects from being carried out on a grand scale. But when this countervailing moment is overridden by authoritarianism there is little to stop wholesale social engineering and the terror state this creates: the electoral victory of Nazism in 1933 ensured that its totalitarian scheme of utopian society could be implemented to a terrifying degree.
To study Nazism is, on one level, to study the awesome potential of modernisation to create ephemeral and abortive (but to their victims terrifyingly real and definitive) symbioses between the traditional and the modern, to produce a form of modernity deliberately attempting to crush the Enlightenment humanist tradition. To grasp this fact destroys any comforting equation between modernity and humanism, modernity and civilisation, modernity and progress, modernity and the good. There is a famous line at the end of Brecht The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui, namely 'The womb that gave birth to Nazism is fertile still."
Griffin's proposition, is that while Fascism and Socialism are superficially distinct entities at a deeper level they're simply different variants of Modernism, both variants being profoundly anti-traditional. Any "Right wing" which aims to be a restorative force in history cannot ally itself with a movement which plans to undermine it.



Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Understanding the 20th Century



For the first time since Christianity formed souls and societies, we find ourselves faced by a public and social apostasy which is no longer merely the schism of a nation or a king, nor the heresy of a teacher or a sect, nor a political and moral revolt, but which is a whole civilization cutting itself off completely from Christianity, a civilization that must be reconquered, re-Christianized."
Maurice Blondel

I suppose what I want to do with this post is lay out my understanding of the "grand narrative" of the 20th Century. In essence, my theory is that "practical" Christian Society failed in the the 19th Century and events of the 20th Century were the results of the secular attempts to build a better society.

Catholic Traditionalists are inclined to think that the serious rot in Western Civilisation began with Vatican Two, but more perceptive minds were well aware that the rot had set in well before then.  The above quote is from Maurice Blondel, written at the beginning of the 20th Century.

Perceptive Christian  minds of the time, like Blondel, realised that the society built by institutionalised Christianity was in DEEP trouble. Indeed, reading some of his contemporaries at the end of the 19th Century, one is impressed with their keen awareness of a sense of an impending transformational change about to engulf society. These authors were passionate Christians who were horrified at the progressive secularisation of society and wanted to reverse the trend and yet they realised they were up against a formidable foe in the face of Modernism.

Now by Modernism, I mean a philosophy of life that is for all intensive purposes Positivistic. And what was apparent to these thinkers, writing at the about the turn of the 20th Century is that positivism was crushing the all before it. Essentially, the history of the 20th Century could best be described as the battle of ideas born within the Positivist vision following the practical irrelevance of European Christian Culture. When Nietszche proclaimed that 'God was dead", he shouting the death of the motive force of European Civilisation.

Now it needs to be understood that understood that Fascism, Communism and contemporary Liberal Democracy are all ideologies framed within the Positivistic metaphysical system, and as such, all are a break from the European Civilisation which existed before 1914. They arose out of the vacuum that came about with the "Death of God". Sure the philosophical foundations of Modernism/Positivism go all the way back to intellectual errors in the Medieval philosophy but they only become culturally transformative after the First World War, when significant numbers of people took them on board and were able to effect their consequences.

Why people took them on board is interesting. What's really apparent in reading the authors of the late 19th Century, is the social ferment and instability in all of the European countries of the time.  Europe's population increase by four hundred percent during the 19th Century, and despite all the scientific advances, vast numbers of people were malnourished, uneducated, poorly housed and living in poverty.

Happy, well fed people don't revolt, and the fact of the matter is that many people weren't happy. Not in the Gloria Freedman sense but in the sense that their crushing poverty and limited ability to escape it induced a yearning for something better. Traditional Christianity taught them to "bear their cross" and seemed unable, with certain few exceptions, come up with any real solutions. The practice of Charity was inadequate to the needs generated by the population explosion and traditional Christianities defence of private property and the realities of lasseiz faire Capitalism meant that the social structure of society was pretty much entrenched. This left people with three options:

1) Bear your cross. i.e. Suck it up.
2) Emigrate to the New World.
3) Abandon the traditional conception of Man and Society and look for something new.
 
Emigration is an interesting one, and it would be interesting to see how much it contributed to the stability of the 19th Century by acting as a "pressure valve" against social agitation. But its also interesting as a metric with regard to how bad things really were in Europe at the time. Passage to the New World was not without its perils ship wreck were common and emigration was usually final, in the sense that it severed a man from his family and his past.  The fact that large numbers of people were prepared to undertake it gives some idea of the social pressures that people were under. Europe, despite its technological and cultural glories was a social mess.

Likewise the French revolution is seen as the originator of the modern world, but it needs to be understood that the Revolution did not arise ex nihilo, rather deep social problems were its gestational medium. The Revolution needs to be seen as an attempt to escape them. Had France of Louis XVI been prosperous and well fed, I doubt if there would have been any Revolution at all. Likewise, specter of Socialism only became real only after the population explosion of 19th Century Europe was able to digest it through the laissez faire Capitalism of the time, producing an exploited urban proletariat, disaffected and ripe for agitation. The ideas of the philosophes are only given an audience when times are hard.

Furthermore, the triumphs of science vastly undermined the authority of religion. Childbirth, which had roughly a 5% mortality at the end of the 19th Century was bought down to less than 1%, not by prayer but by modern medicine. Why go to the priest when the doctor is more effective. It didn't take much of a push to lure the masses towards secularism.

The point of this is that Christianity had practically failed, particularly as a social phenomenon and while people still continued to mouth religious platitudes and perform religious observances, they did so out of habit rather than conviction. When more liberty was finally given to them, especially Catholics after Vatican Two, religious practice withered.

The intellectual vacuum left by Christianity paved the way for secular solutions to societal problems, solutions which rejected the Christian metaphysic and which were ultimately positivist, and therefore modernist, in their foundation. Fascism, Liberal Democracy and Socialism are the Right, Middle, Left repesctive "solutions" to these problems but are ultimately all cut from the same modernist cloth. And there is nothing in Modernism which prevents the transformation of one to the other except perhaps historical contingency.