The Rzhev Dementor

New monument to the Soviet soldiers who perished in the Battles of Rzhev (1942-43) during the Great Patriotic War.

Putin and Lukashenko attended the opening ceremony in Rzhev yesterday.

The lower half of the statue dissipates into a flock of cranes, referencing a famous song that is based on a poem by Dagestani writer Rasul Gamzatov:

I sometimes feel that the soldiers
Who have not returned from the bloody fields
Never lied down to earth
But turned into white cranes…

The soldier’s sad, contemplative visage is based on a composite based on the Russian Ministry of Defense’s archives that fought in the Battles of Rzhev. It stands 25 meters tall, and is armed with a PPSh-41.

It stands on a hill that is 10 meters town and supported by a framework that seems to have some Constructivist influences.

There is also a new museum complex attached to the statue.

This makes it the second major monumental construction opened up in Russia this year, following the consecration of the Warhammer 40k-redolent Cathedral of the Armed Forces a couple of weeks ago.

If you thought it was just Anglo libs can’t make sense of anything in the world without resorting to Harry Potter analogies, you’d be wrong.

The Latvia-based, Khodorkovsky-funded opposition outlet Meduza compared the statue to a Dementor, making Putin into “Vovan-de-Mort” (Voldemort. Get it? Haha) by extension. The accompanying Tweet asked where the Horcruxes are hidden.

As they say: Read. Another. Book.

This is actually especially important now, since I’m not sure Russian libs have yet got the memo that J.K. Rowling has been canceled on account of being a terf.

Anatoly Karlin is a transhumanist interested in psychometrics, life extension, UBI, crypto/network states, X risks, and ushering in the Biosingularity.


Inventor of Idiot’s Limbo, the Katechon Hypothesis, and Elite Human Capital.


Apart from writing booksreviewstravel writing, and sundry blogging, I Tweet at @powerfultakes and run a Substack newsletter.


  1. Please keep off topic posts to the current Open Thread.

    If you are new to my work, start here.

  2. SIMP simp says

    It looks like 90’s CGI made with Video Toaster on an Amiga.

  3. truthman says

    OT, Anatoly, do you have any book recommendations for the 1917 era, covering both revolutions/coups?

  4. Mr. Hack says
  5. Dicentim says

    The Rzhev meat grinder, I believe; operation Mars was to be to Army Group Centre what Uranus was to the participants of Blau but apparently it didn’t work out that way, the German lines weren’t overextended or too far from their supplies there as they hadn’t advanced in a while and two major offensives of that scale cannot take place simultaneously; some claim that it was only a diversion but things like that are always said post factum if plans fail.

    The PPSh is a symbol of the sacrifice; the Red Army had many avtomachiki, some in units as big as batallions and their role was to attack, but their weapon, the submachine gun for all its qualities as well as being inacurate, was a very short range gun that worked well in urban fighting or when clearing trenches. The German squads were composed and riflemen and built around MGs that were ideal for defence; in those fields many men were mowed down before being able to reach their foes.

    It makes one think about the idiocy of brave men killing each other for some abstract reason, only to discover the futility of it all when it’s over.

    Léon Degrelle idealised the Red Army soldiers in his later life.

    Cranes are akin to storks and storks symbolise birth and thus rebirth; where I come from, babies are brought by storks.

    Another idiocy is the fantasy genre; it must be a sign of deep decadence that fairy tales with elves and dragons have permeated all fields of life; the future isn’t promising if the superstructure (Marxist concept) is oriented towards what medieval -or worse, modern day medieval- minds imagined; it appears that in our post modern world, only the Chinese still read science fiction.

  6. Morton's toes says

    That statue is freakin’ awesome.

    My favorite statue is in downtown Clarksburg West Virginia. Stonewall Jackson was born near there although he fought on the side of the enemy. Clarksburg is keeping him for now.

  7. Kent Nationalist says

    I can’t wait for the Harry Potter references to fade out of use and be replaced by a new generation’s references, which will be blissfully meaningless to me

  8. Speaking of rabid Potter fans, J K Rowling recently got into trouble for following Douglas Murray on Twitter. Won’t be long before she tweets that Voldemort Did Nothing Wrong and writes a remake of Harry Potter in which Voldemort wins and establishes the ideal pureblood ethnostate. Wizards are basically trad isolationists already. They just need to dump civic nationalism and #MudbloodsWelcome. Hmm, maybe Anglos really can’t think about anything without Harry Potter analogies.

    Cool statue.

  9. Dicentim says


  10. “Another idiocy is the fantasy genre” – Illustrations in Slavic history books for the popular consumption glorifying the ancient Slavs belong to the fantasy genre. Many Russians and Ukrainians may not know the difference between fantasy and history. It is possible that the fantasy genre was invented by the Pan-Slavic historians in the 19th century.

  11. Not bad, though it looks a lot like an unpainted lead miniature figurine.

  12. songbird says

    It stands 25 meters tall, and is armed with a PPSh-41.

    Guess that is one way to protect statues. But it might not be a bad idea, if the cranes detached and became armed drones – you can never be too safe.

  13. #BabaYagaIsReal

  14. Léon Degrelle idealised the Red Army soldiers in his later life.

    I had read an interview of Degrelle a few years ago. I don’t remember who took the interview, but I remember that he was asked a question about what he thought of Stalin.

    Degrelle answered along the lines that Stalin was a great man. Degrelle also said that he once asked the Further what the Nazis would do if they captured Stalin. According to Degrelle, Hitler answered that he would keep Stalin alive and offer him a castle in Bavaria to live there until he died.

  15. Statues of Dumbledore and Harry Potter get pulled down by rioting Hogwarts pupils.

  16. Europe Europa says

    I don’t get why in Britain if we commemorate WW2, or even talk about it in a proud/patriotic manner we are considered chauvinistic bigots who need to move with the times and get over it.

    It’s got to the point here that talking about WW2 in a patriotic manner is considered tantamount to anti-German racism, the English FA already ban wearing poppies at football matches because it’s “political”, but ironically they encourage players and pundits to wear BLM symbols.

  17. Kent Nationalist says

    Sometimes I wonder if you actually live in Britain. Only a month ago there were government sponsored V-Day events, which would have been much larger were it not for corona virus.

  18. Europe Europa says

    My personal opinion on that is that the government wouldn’t have normally promoted it, but it was convenient to because it fits in with the “war time” propaganda they were promoting in regards to the lock down.

    I’m not convinced it would have been larger if it wasn’t for the lock down. I think they were cynically using all the Captain Tom and Vera Lynn war time propaganda as a means of encouraging compliance with the lock down out of some sense of national duty.

  19. Blinky Bill says

    Я убит подо Ржевом,
    В безымянном болоте,
    В пятой роте,
    На левом,
    При жестоком налете.…
    И во всем этом мире
    До конца его дней —
    Ни петлички, ни лычки
    С гимнастерки моей.
    Я — где корни слепые
    Ищут корма во тьме;
    Я — где с облаком пыли
    Ходит рожь на холме.

    Я — где крик петушиный
    На заре по росе;
    Я — где ваши машины
    Воздух рвут на шоссе.

    Где — травинку к травинке —
    Речка травы прядет,
    Там, куда на поминки
    Даже мать не придет.

    Летом, в сорок втором,
    Я зарыт без могилы.
    Всем, что было потом,
    Смерть меня обделила.

    I was killed near Rzhev
    In a nameless bog,
    In the fifth company,
    On the Left flank,
    In a cruel air raid.…
    And in this whole world
    To the end of its days –
    Neither patches, nor badges
    From my tunic you’ll find.
    I am where the blind roots
    Seek for food in the dark;
    I am where the rye waves
    On a hill in the dust.

    I am where the cockerel cries
    In the dew of the dawn;
    I am where your cars
    Tear the air on highways.

    Where – small stalk to small stalk –
    River’s weaving its grass,
    Where for the remembrance
    Even my mother won’t come.

    In the summer of forty-two
    I was buried without a grave
    Everything what came later
    Was taken by the death

  20. Hyperborean says

    Another idiocy is the fantasy genre; it must be a sign of deep decadence that fairy tales with elves and dragons have permeated all fields of life; the future isn’t promising if the superstructure (Marxist concept) is oriented towards what medieval -or worse, modern day medieval- minds imagined; it appears that in our post modern world, only the Chinese still read science fiction.

    Pseudo-historical/feudal-imitative series and Wuxia in various formats are very popular in China.

  21. Dicentim says

    They must have understood that whether they played with white or black, it was all still chess.
    These days, the colours of the chess pieces have different connotations; a chess channel that I follow had a podcast taken down by a Youtube algorithm because it involved those words as well as “attack” etc.

    Stalin was Georgian, so Bavaria would have been an adequate choice; interesting that none of the conquered or to be conquered territories were thought of; perhaps it was about keeping ennemies close; if I were in that situation, I’d make Stalin Gauleiter of Italy to thank that nation for its great contributions to the Axis cause…

    Léon Blum was in a camp for prominents; the monarchs of the Belgians and of Denmark did all right; I can imagine defeated Allied leaders confined or in internal exile but I think that there is no chance that they, be they Anglo-Saxon, Soviet or Free French, would have treated Hitler or Mussolini in the same manner.

    I thought that you might enjoy a subject on Sailer’s blog; it’s about Robert the Bruce and Black Lives Matter (yes, the two have somewhat collided in the second battle of Bannockburn!) but involves Moors, Zidane and other things that, from a recent exchange that we had, I sensed might be of some interest to you.

  22. Inselaffen says

    Harry Potter started out as a simple kids book but had an increasing amount of political themes woven in from the real world as inspiration for its ‘goodies’ and ‘baddies’- & those the kind of themes you’d expect out of a diehard Blairite Labour party supporter.

    So it’s no surprise adults who read it 15-20+ years ago keep referring to it as a touchstone of their political ‘understanding’, it’s their founding mythos (& not like atomised western consumer-kids have much other ethno-cultural-religious bedrock to ground them anymore).

    That also shows the enduring effectiveness of propaganda aimed at the young.

  23. Dicentim says

    I always found it rather difficult to watch Chinese historical films.

    Of course, a nation that big, that is rising, that isn’t united by a world religion and that is ruled by a party that has abandoned its ideology but will never abandon power, needs a mythology and creating what people see as their glorious past is an easy way to provide it; Alexander Nevsky too fought the Nazis on the frozen lake and some here may know of Thierry la Fronde who filmed in De Gaulle’s day, used his tricks with a sling to show the English who is boss when they occupied France in the hundred years war…

    I find South Korean films about life that are set in our day very European; South Korea must be the most Western country in that region, Christianity is a big thing there; also, Soviet Koreans are very Russian, Viktor Tsoi was one.

  24. Kent Nationalist says

    Another idiocy is the fantasy genre; it must be a sign of deep decadence that fairy tales with elves and dragons have permeated all fields of life; the future isn’t promising if the superstructure (Marxist concept) is oriented towards what medieval -or worse, modern day medieval- minds imagined; it appears that in our post modern world, only the Chinese still read science fiction.

    Extremely gay opinion

  25. Dicentim says

    It surely must have predated that as it is based on ancient myths and legends, as well as fairy tales, and there must have been a continuum, but the point is that it is understandable that people who believe in holy relics and demonic possession, can have an interest in magic, not so with people that attend secondary and higher education, are aware of the existence of cells and atoms and use electric power.

    Unfortunately, I know that many people cannot tell the difference between history and fantasy and that is not limited to the two nationalities that you named.

  26. Kent Nationalist says

    I partially agree they emphasised it because of the virus, however they had been preparing to celebrate it for a long time. I also saw many pseudo-street parties near where I live, so I am sure they would have been bigger if people weren’t worrying about infection.

  27. Kent Nationalist says

    It is possible that the fantasy genre was invented by the Pan-Slavic historians in the 19th century.

    By Chretien de Troyes in the 12th century. Or at the latest by Ariosto in the 16th

  28. Korenchkin says

    You mistook his butthurt whining for a serious statement

  29. Dicentim says

    Can you please expand on that, since you appear to have an interest in gay things and seem to be in the know about what opinions to include in that universe of yours.

    You call yourself a nationalist but you seem to want your people to follow things that they would have normally outgrown long ago.

    Puff, go ride your magic dragon…

  30. Puff, go ride your magic dragon…

    Watch the skies

  31. Dicentim says

    The ingenuity of using a cheap WW2 era transport plane by arming it with anti-aircraft guns and making a gunship out of it to use in counterinsurgency and ground support operations.

    Just imagine the difference in cost for the performance of the very same task today.

  32. J.K. Rowling has been canceled on account of being a terf

    What’s a terf? Ok, I googled it now, never mind…

    I think Milennials like transsexuals because they are androgynous themselves.

    Seriously, this is somewhat OT, but, why are Millennials so androgynous? I’m Gen X, but I just was in a place with a lot of millennials, and about 20% you couldn’t tell if they were male or female. The way they dress, the way they move, even their faces.

    The guys dressed like fags, and the girls were masculine. There was a bearded guy wearing a skirt. Another one, I don’t know, he looked like a fag wearing tight clothes and had painted fingernails, but he had a girlfriend, actually a pretty cute blond girl. Well, I think it was his girlfriend, maybe it was just his BFF? He wasn’t very effeminate, just dressed like a fag.

    There was also another couple who I wasn’t sure was a lesbian couple or hetero. One had no breasts, but she looked female. The other one was more masculine and maybe was a guy, but I’m not sure. Maybe the theories about hormones in the water and food are right.

    O Brave New World, that has such people in it!

  33. Dicentim says

    What was the setting? Were you intoxicated? I find your confusion re-genders, orientations and relationships amusing.

    More seriously: hormonal dysfunctions might be the cause of a lot of that, causing low testosterone and high estrogen in men, not so sure about women but perhaps it goes the other way; low T can be caused by lots of things: food that contains certain chemicals or hormones used in farming, certain types of food, plastic particle consumption from packages and containers, beer and soy apparently are a good way to ingest estrogens, bodyfat itself generates these anomalies and many people now have high percentages of it, even if they look thin (low muscle mass-skinny fat) due to fast carb dominated calorie rich and nutrient poor diets, lack of physical activity and focus on low intensity steady state cardio if anything. lack of sun exposure, sleep deprivation, perhaps even wearing tight underwear, carrying electronic devices near the the genitals, using various hygene and cosmetic products and so on and so on.

    Some of those people are perhaps even born that way; foetuses can probably be affected by the above, so it could be an explanation as to why all this tends to thrive in urban and modern environments.

    Some of it is of course a fashion but it’s a vicious circle and people choosing to look and act like that end up not having any other choice because they become vegan, game all night long, use cosmetics etc. and the hormonal dysfunctions bring about behavioural changes so guys act feminine and assume female roles including in their intimate lives.

  34. We already had that plot, of a “magic” school refusing to teach useful magic. It was the fifth book (arguably the best), “Order of the Phoenix”. The cat lady one.

  35. The Union of Lublin was signed in Lublin, Poland, on July 1, 1569,
    creating the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. The date should become
    better known in Europe for in many ways the PLC was a forerunner
    of the European Union 400+ years later

  36. Philip Owen says

    What is this doing 70 years later? Why so long to put it up? This is not commemoration. It is (literal) fascist sacramentalising of the glorious dead to justify present jingoism. And the monstrosity of describing the new Temple of Mars as a Christian cathedral! Putin has been there far too long.

  37. songbird says

    Hard to beat the numbers for Potter: >500 million books sold. 8 films totaling >$7.7 billion. Especially with IQ falling, people are probably reading less. I don’t think it will be beat – it is the ultimate signaling medium.

    To put it in context: the closest thing the Right claims (at least partly) is LoTR. That’s only >150 million books sold (just the trilogy) And that’s over many more decades.

  38. songbird says

    only the Chinese still read science fiction.

    Chinese sci-fi seems to be very much like fantasy. At least that is my snap judgement, I’m far from an expert on it.

  39. Do you feel the same about the Holocaust Monument/Museum which the British government wants built next to the Palace of Westminster?

    How about the RAF Bomber Command memorial unveiled in 2012?

  40. Is this the return of nineteen seventies glam rock and Ziggy Stardust (David Bowie) androgyny?

  41. @Dicentim

    South Korean TV doramas are “unreconstructed fascist white culture” though:) The cutie pie young couples don’t even tongue kiss until marriage is agreed upon. And the stays at home and is all I Love Lu See, while he’s all Van Daik Sho.

    And on the topic of Asian Christianity, as good a time as any to remind colleagues that while Korea and the Philippines are the only half-Christian or fully-Christian countries thar, China is catching up fast.

    It’s already officially third in the world in terms of a protestant population (probably second by now though), and ten years from now is expected to have the biggest Christian population in the world.

    Apparently it works both ways–angsty urban westerners do Buddhism and Jainism, while angsty urban easterners go evangelical.

    I’d have preferred Chinese Christians to go orthodox, but no doubt the party believes that this is politically dangerous in the long term when you border Russia, some people’s allegiance could be muddied. Whereas having the urban middle class go evangelical is apparently seen as a lesser risk. Hah. If they only knew what a pipeline for the GloboHomo’s teachings it has become.

  42. Guillaume Tell says

    AS’s The Red Wheel.

  43. nebulafox says

    Vietnam used to have a prominent Catholic minority, but their numbers got thinned out by the war. There’s still a prominent cathedral in downtown HCM. The government has tried to encourage atheism, but to little effect: most Vietnamese remain traditional Mahayana Buddhists and just lie about it when trying to get government-related jobs.

    I’d have preferred Chinese Christians to go orthodox, but no doubt the party believes that this is politically dangerous in the long term when you border Russia, some people’s allegiance could be muddied.

    I don’t see that happening. Most mainlanders are far too nationalistic for that. Part of the reason Protestantism works in China is because it isn’t tied into authority outside China.

    One problem the Chinese government did used to have was that a lot of ethnic Koreans were Christian and tended to use their churches to hide fleeing North Koreans, but the refugee flow has abated over the last decade.

  44. Mr. Hack says

    Here’s the original by Magritte entitled “the Blank Signature”. What I presented was obviously an updated version produced for the seventh studio break through album by Styx, a Chicago based prog-rock group in the 70’s. The album went platinum and included several tasty hit songs. Actually, the one that I presented was even a takeoff of the original album cover (?), I’ll let you follow-up on your own if you’re truly interested:

  45. Mr. Hack says

    Plenty of fantasy based on forgeries etc; in Western Europe as well, as pointed out by “The First Millenium Revisionist” right here:

  46. Blinky Bill says

    present jingoism

    War memorial to black servicemen unveiled in Cardiff

    Statue for Wales’ first black headteacher Betty Campbell.

    World War One: The role of Cardiff’s black serviceman.

    Why we need to start taking responsibility for Wales’ colonial past – starting with Picton.

  47. Their idea of using cranes referencing to the famous song “Zhuravli ” (Yan Frenkel song, on poem of Gamzatov), is really cool for reminding people of victory day, but probably the monument is a bit too surreal and weird, and it doesn’t combine so well with the socialist realism style of depiction of soldier.

    Just a normal sculpture of soldiers (with less idealistic socialist realism than this one), and with cranes flying in the background – would distract less from the reality of battles there.

    based on a poem by Dagestani writer Rasul Gamzatov:

    His 1968 poem’s use of the image of cranes, was directly inspired by a famous story of a Japanese girl who received cancer as a result of the American atomic bombing of Hiroshima.

    This Japanese girl tried to make 1000 origami cranes, but failed to before she died.

    Gamzatov himself saw the monument of the girl in Hiroshima, and used the cranes as a symbol of the poem.

    However, use of wedge of cranes as a symbol of the war, was already pre-dates the song.

    In 1957 – the beautiful film was released already, “Cranes are flying”.

    As 1:30 in video below, they see the wedge cranes flying over as a omen of war – (on the day the Germans invade).

    So I assume the film is probably the real inspiration.

    By this year, the prestigious Criterion Collection made a new transfer of this film for blu ray, which is good to see how appreciated it is still internationally:

  48. ‘The Latvia-based, Khodorkovsky-funded opposition outlet Meduza compared the statue to a Dementor, making Putin into “Vovan-de-Mort” (Voldemort. Get it? Haha) by extension. The accompanying Tweet asked where the Horcruxes are hidden.’

    That’s definitely in poor taste.

  49. The revisionism of the Roman Empire’s history is a very interesting topic. Galkovsky has arrived to the conclusion that Roman Civilization’s history was falsified some twenty years ago. He had a series of posts on his blog about this. He has recently started a YouTube channel where he has also made a few videos on this subject in his habitual manner (i.e. talking about serious issues in a rather playful manner).

  50. Marshal Marlow says

    At least that is my snap judgement, I’m far from an expert on it.

    I too have only read a couple of scifi novels by Chinese authors, but I’m hungry for more. They have a we-can-work-together-to-solve-problems vibe combined with a self-sacrifice-without-glory vibe. Western scifi over the last 30 years stand in stark contrast because they’re predominantly about surviving in dystopian futures.

    I have no doubt that it’ll be young Chinese engineers and scientists inspired by Chinese scifi who will give mankind its first permanent settlements in the outer solar system.

  51. songbird says

    The statue made me think a lot about Japan. The cranes (including that story about Hiroshima). Also, from my point of view, the poem encapsulates an almost Japanese (and Chinese?) attitude about death. I don’t know what to call it – Buddhist, or Shintoist. Maybe, the similarity comes from the atheistic element of communism?

    Can one see flocks of cranes in the European part of Russia? In the abstract, I know that they flock someplace, but in my particular neck of the woods, no stork-like (long-legged) birds flock, so the statue looked wrong to me, at first. I guess one can see them flocking in Dagestan.

  52. My comment to the ““The First Millenium Revisionist” article:

    It seems that Okhrana and NKVD and KGB must have had a section that sponsored various lunatics like Velikovsky and Fomenko.

  53. The cranes that Putin taught how to fly:

    Japanese Crane Dance

  54. songbird says

    I think you are quite right – there is a negative zeitgeist in Western sci-fi. BTW, what is your favorite Chinese story? I am always looking for recommendations.

    I have no doubt that it’ll be young Chinese engineers and scientists inspired by Chinese scifi who will give mankind its first permanent settlements in the outer solar system.

    Right now, I think the mindset is to match Apollo (which was quite a feat originally). If they are able to do it, and I think they will, that will mean that they are out from under America’s shadow, and there will be a spirit to exceed America – to do their own moonshot. Perhaps, it will be Mars.

    In a way, Spacex seems to be making impressive efforts, but the idea that Mars will be settled with chemical rockets seems crazy to me. They may be up against a regulatory hurdle that China does not face.

  55. Mr. Hack says

    I don’t know if Velikovsky was a lunatic or not, but he wrote some good books including some incredible theories. Say what you may, but his research appeared to be quite deep and he exhibited an excellent writing style. Why, you don’t think that it’s possible that the earth’s trajectory changed course? His musings about the great flood(s) was quite revealing.

    I don’t really know much at all about Fomenko.

  56. Mr. Hack says

    Did you read the article that I cited at this website? Was the author perhaps Galkovsky?

  57. Mr. Hack says

    Thanks to your comment, I now know a bit about Fomenko!

  58. The Cranes are Flying (1957) is an absolutely brilliant film.

    Probably the first that shows war as a bunch of unkempt soldiers trudging through endless mud while bullets from unknown directions and invisible enemies whine past and smack into the bog or the trees. And still they are heroes even as they yell insults at each other to keep some shreds of spirit.

    Also when the main guy is mortally wounded by a completely random senseless bullet while deep in the swamps with one other survivor, instead of a “flashback” he goes into a “flashforward”, living quickly through an imaginary future of how he survives the front, gets back home, is met by his family, marries his sweetheart, and lives happily ever after.

    Truly magnificent film.

  59. Autists Anonymous Rehab Camp Fugitive says

    This is beyond horrible optics.
    Even the most zealous NYT sociopath will thump his chest and writhe in agony each 9/11. It’s only after the public spectacle that he will start to criticize Drumpf’s weaponization of a national tragedy.
    He’s not going to write an article about how the monument behind trump looks like a penis, and even if he did, it would never get published.

    RusLibs love to talk about how Putler “weaponized” Victory Day so that anyone who criticizes his optics is branded a nazi/retard and then….do exactly that. On opening day. With a harry potter reference.

    The Russian Ben Shapiro is resting under the Yaffo sun, sipping on a kosher milkshake bought by his pali bacha bazi: The libs are owning themselves.

  60. anonymous coward says

    Not him, but I can expand. The medieval era was the peak of Western civilization, harping on it makes you the ultimate cuckold, worse even than any open-borders pro-faggotry subhuman.

  61. YetAnotherAnon says

    I think it was Sailer who pointed out that HP is basically the tale of a power struggle between members of a privately-educated genetic elite.

  62. I read the article as soon as it was published. I am waiting for the other parts. I have also wondered if the author might have been Galkovsky, but the article is quite different from his usual style. Overall, this article simply confirms that history is not objectively speaking a historical discipline.

  63. Anonymous lurker says

    The common/European grey crane is a common sight in European Russia, and forms flocks during migration. Here in the Tver region, not far from where this monument is located:

    The whiter cranes (Siberian/snow crane) that Putin did some preservation PR for are very rare, indeed critically endangered, hence that stunt.

  64. Mr. Hack says

    It wasn’t until I read your excellent comment that I remembered that I did view this film, many years ago. The “flashforward” scene device was quite remarkable.

  65. Mr. Hack says

    “like cinema itself, nothing is as it appears”


  66. Mr. Hack says
  67. AnonFromTN says

    Somewhat OT.

    Almost 78% of Russians voted for the constitutional amendments. Participation was also unexpectedly high, about 65%. Both numbers are ~10% above the expectations. My hypothesis is that both domestic and foreign libtards angered a lot of Russians, so many people who would not have bothered to vote actually went and voted “yes”, as an in-your-face gesture to libtards and traitors.

    It appears that Russian authorities, in contrast to hapless Soviet rulers, learned the PR game. On the day of voting ~100 “opposition” gathered in Moscow Pushkin square, along with ~100 journalists of all kinds. Small numbers of “opposition” suggest that either Khodorkovsky is too stingy to rent a bigger crowd, or that even Russian libtards began to suspect something. The fun part is that the authorities did not try to disperse the “opposition”, but instead sent a pretty young blond policewoman to distribute facemasks to those who did not have them. Naturally, all attention of the presstitutes, as well as their cameras, turned to a pretty blond girl in uniform, and away from the “opposition” (interestingly, most of them are ugly, sometimes even look deformed, in agreement with Russian saying “Бог шельму метит “, which translates as “God marks the scum”). As the attention was turned away from them, the “opposition” dispersed voluntarily, without the help of police.

  68. Dicentim says

    Good idea of a peak then, shared with the caliphates and other golden ages of that era; seems like peak time is about to return.

    The medieval period was of course followed by an age of deep decline, when Europeans shed superstition, created science, invented everything, conquered and ruled the world, multiplied manyfold and so on.

    Good pseudonym, by the way; explains your fixation on language relating to cuckoldry and homosexuality.

  69. Dicentim says

    Naval aviation among high mountains, I imagine.

  70. Dicentim says

    I got acquainted with the so called New Chronology more than a decade ago; it is fascinating to read about but so much at odds with everything else that we have learned. Some of its debunks definitely make sense, while many others don’t; the reconstruction bit seems like pure fiction.

    I always thought about the similarities of those two Mediterranean people, inhabiting merchant cities with canals, with trading posts and colonies around the sea, reached by galleys rowed by slaves, regardless of there being some two thousand years between Phoenicians and Venetians (listen to the names).

  71. Mr. Hack says

    Just a reflection of my new official position (I’ve always already assumed these duties) unbeknownst to Karlin as his new “Marketing Director”. I’ve been chosen to add some color and finesse to what sometimes parades as drab and colorless. Now if he could convince Mr. Unz to pay me for my efforts, I could stay at home indefinitely. I got a tentative job offer yesterday, where I’d have to return to the “real office environment”. I don’t know if I could handle that, I’ve gotten kind of used to working from my home computer dressed way down, close to my bed and fridge? 🙂

  72. Tsar Nicholas says

    Karlin’s awfully quiet today. He must be in shock over the referendum result.

  73. Dicentim says

    I don’t know how keen this site and blog are on adding colour; I always assumed that their hidden agenda was to have less of it 🙂
    If they don’t pay, do it for party and motherland 🙂

  74. Dicentim says

    The shock could be the result of the festivities that must have followed 🙂

  75. And last month, there is the new blu-ray transfer release from Criterion Collection. I didn’t buy it yet, but it was getting a lot of hype on the internet.

    Hipsters of YouTube are already reviewing it.

    Also for 17:30 – it’s also his favourite release of the month

    Mosfilm has recently made a new 2K restoration which the blu-ray uses.

  76. I think they are good at noticing discrepancies, but not so good at providing credible explanations. All I have retained from their take on the matter is that humanity currently does not have a more or less objective historical narrative. And that maybe it is even impossible to construct such a narrative. This of course renders all “historical identities ” of different human groups rather close to mythology. That is why I am more interested in paleogenetics, but only where Y haplogroups of different ancient cultures are considered. I don’t care about the mitochondrial DNA haplogroups: women slept with whomever conquered them and fed their offspring. This is of course an evolutionary adaptation that makes absolute sense.

  77. I’d assumed this was a reference to some incident in the Pacific War where a flight of Douglas TBD Devastators (thinking about Dementors), or Grumman TBF Avengers (not sure which in the photo), dropped torpedoes on a nip position in the mountains of an island.

    “Mission accomplished, sir. We torpedoed the mountain. It’s listing.”

  78. Soviet engineers came up with this during Great Patriotic War:

  79. 100 “opposition” gathered

    You can admire how clever such a public relations strategy is, but it is a bit too cynical – one party, which partly funds its own “opposition” to make it sufficiently a zoo, that it will not be a normal alternative.

    Sometimes there is also a loss of sense of boundary between reality and performance art, especially as it is a “lightly managed”.

    E.g. Ksenia Sobchak. Audi only recently understands, that Ksenia Sobchak is also intentionally cultivating her anti ratings, because part of her job is to be a absurd exhibition object in the zoo.

    To be fair, she really believes many of her political views, and is really sometimes part of an opposition, and has a real popularity for entertaining people. So in some sense she is a real opposition.

    At the same time, she likes to be the most loyal child of the establishment, and if you look in the social media of the children of the Kremlin elite, you can see who are half her friends. Or sometimes she probably is asked directly to e.g. go to Ekaterinburg to create an provocation with Sergius, shortly after he had said that Putin was establishing a fascist concentration camp of Satan.

  80. go to Ekaterinburg to create an provocation with Sergius, shortly after he had said that Putin was establishing a fascist concentration camp of Satan.

    If she wasn’t a bit of a counter-revolutionary inside, she would be at least unconsciously enough happy with Sergius, – even while recognizing the dangerous insanity – as he is creating a genuine hatred of Putin, among his mentally ill followers who believe those conspiracy theories.

    But her response was to fly to Ekaterinburg to create a provocation with his followers – it could be interpreted as a pure desire for views and clickbait, of course, which can be strong motivation for narcissists.

  81. Mr. Hack says

    I don’t think that there’s a single Criterion film that I haven’t viewed from my city’s public library. Thanks for turning me on to this amiable reviewer too. Just bought my first flat screen TV (55″) and can’t wait to get it all set-up and ready to go – feel like I’ve finally entered the 21st century!

  82. Toronto Russian says

    HP magic doesn’t work like that. Muggle ancestry doesn’t make a wizard less powerful (Dumbledore was from a half-blood family, McGonagall and Voldemort had Muggle fathers). And an untalented child will be automatically rejected by Hogwarts no matter how pure the blood.

    In 1858 Angus Buchanan never received a Hogwarts acceptance letter, but got as far as the Sorting Hat, before he was exposed as a Squib. In sheer desperation, he threw himself ahead of a girl whose name had been called and placed the Hat upon his head. The horror of the moment when the Hat announced kindly that the boy beneath it was a good-hearted chap, but no wizard, would never be forgotten by those who witnessed it.

    “miscegenation becoming “all the rage” for the next hundred years”
    It has been going on for a long time. Wizards are such a small group (the “truly pure-blood” families of magical Britain are called the Sacred 28 – for comparison, Austria-Hungary, a real world example of aristocratic obsession with bloodline purity, had about 300 noble families) that they have to marry out or breed with their cousins. It is unknown if they could magic away the consequences of inbreeding, but they couldn’t cure Squibs from their “genetic defect” or fix Harry’s and his father’s eyesight, so their possibilities seem quite limited.

    Since the author of the post goes for an allegory of the real world – real artistic talent, for example, doesn’t work like that either. It doesn’t grow higher in show business dynasties, whose heirs are often more mediocre than newcomers. Some (painful to watch) evidence here: in this sequel of a Soviet comedy, daughters of famous actors play the female versions of their fathers’ roles.

    An equivalent of blocking mudbloods from the magical society would be blocking anyone but the heirs of Alla Pugacheva, Alsou, and other celebrities from Russian pop music scene. Or what all of Hollywood will be after the kids of Angelina Jolie (who herself is born into show business nobility) grow up.

  83. Why don’t you just get the Criterion Channel? It’s only about $10 a month.

  84. Philip Owen says

    I definitely feel the same about Bomber Command.

  85. Philip Owen says

    None of those are worshipping war.

  86. Pericles says

    Personally, I feel worse about all the Holocaust kitsch everywhere. Ludicrous that the guys who actually saved the jews asses have to put up with it too.

    But then, here are the jewish criteria for giving a plaque to a gentile.

    Only a Jewish party can put forward a nomination
    Helping a family member or helping a Jew who converted to Christianity is not ground for recognition;
    Assistance has to be repeated or substantial
    Assistance has to be given without any financial gain expected in return (although covering expenses such as food is acceptable)

    (I expect this to be more clearly translated as ‘righteous among the goyim’.)

    So for example, Raoul Wallenberg, a member of the elites fascinated with his strain of jewish blood, gets the award since:

    While serving as Sweden’s special envoy in Budapest between July and December 1944, Wallenberg issued protective passports and sheltered Jews in buildings designated as Swedish territory.

    But Sweden, who, you know, provided all the resources, gets nothing. Don’t expect us to thank you, goyim. You were just doing what was right and proper. Oh, and you racists need to take in more immigrants.

  87. Mr. Hack says

    With my brand new super TV set I’m all ears. $10/month is not so bad. I used to subscribe to cable television at about $80/month. After 10 years I gave it all up when I figured that I just peed away $10k. I only watched about 2-3 stations out of the 50-60 that I had access to. One of them was TCM. Now I watch older films for free through the internet. Karlin was kind enough to show me how to download new films for free, but I’ve never done so. I used to get out about 3-4 times a year to see a new movie…but now? 🙁

  88. Pericles says

    From jingoism to jigabooism.

  89. Well, that monument doesn’t impress me nearly as much as the new cathedral, but at least the Russians are engaged in building things and not destroying them.

  90. We’ve had Criterion Channel most of this year. I actually just stopped it today because won’t be watching much over the next 2 months.

    There’s a 2 week free trial then it goes to $10.99 a month in the US. We were able to use it on three devices but not on a Samsung TV unless using Roku or something similar. This month there’s a lot of Czech New Wave movies available.

  91. Well, good work to update your television.

    You should spend a lot and buy the best quality of television – it can also encourage you to watch better films, or older films.

    For a couple of years when I didn’t have a television, and I was watching films on my notebook – and that was the time when I was watching a lot of bad films. After I bought an OLED, I started to enjoy black and white films on blu-ray again.

    We are quite lucky people to be living at this time, as just in the last decade – with all the popularity of 4K restorations of old films; it became possible to enjoy watching old films at a high quality, like our parents and grandparents when they were first seeing them in the cinema.

    Criterion film that I haven’t viewed from my city’s public library

    I only have a couple of their blu-rays (their region locking is annoying as well). I think some of the Criterion blu-rays are better transfers and are worth extra cost. For example, Criterion Collection blu-ray of “Stalker” is really beautiful.

    But then Sony also make some amazing blu-ray restorations of old films (e.g. “Lawrence of Arabia”), which look as good to me as some new films on the 4K Ultra HD discs – but they have a more limited catalogue of old films, and it’s more just Hollywood.

  92. Streaming from the channel, will usually have more lossy compression than the codec from his blu-ray player (VC-1/MPEG-4/HEVC) and even when it’s the same codec (e.g. Netflix Ultra HD), with lower bitrate.

    Although it’s not sure (and depends on size/type of television) whether you would notice, and the transfer usually makes more difference to what you see.

    • For classic films, it is surely much nicer to have physically blu-ray discs as well, if you want to again – on the other hand, it’s a problem when you accidentally buy a bad film you will not want to watch again.

    I guess also it depends how many films you watch. I am not much of a cinephile, and only watch about 3 films a month, so it’s not too cluttering to buy a few blu-rays every month.

  93. Dicentim says

    I was vaguely aware of this one; the aircraft appears to be a glider; is it? I just wonder whether having the vehicle’s gears in neutral could allow the wheels and tracks to move fast enough during take-off and landing or whether an undercarriage was perhaps used for the former and released just after, but then what about the landing?

    Definitely a good idea to have light tanks accompany airborne troops; even today the VDV have several types of armoured vehicles; they are understandably light but fulfill the functions of firepower and mobility needed to overcome the rather lightly defended airbases and strategic points at the ennemy’s rear.

  94. Mr. Hack says

    Thanks! I purchased a Samsung 55″ Class 6, 4K LED LCD TV. It certainly isn’t the very top of the line, but I’m sure a great step up into the right direction. I’m arranging the removal of my old RCA (top of the line for its time) tube TV and waiting to receive a good real wood TV stand to go with it. Unfortunately, I don’t have a Blue-Ray player yet, but that will undoubtedly come. I do own a good Sony DVD player, and it’ll suffice for now. I’ll probably obtain a Play-station game unit that automatically includes Blue-Ray playback capability down the road.

    Question: Am I understanding things correctly, that most any film that I can playback streaming through the internet can be directly viewed on my new TV, including the Criterion station that Matra has mentioned and also YouTube and other streaming websites? Watching 3 films a month is perhaps a good idea – I watch so many that I often get them mixed up, especially the titles and actors. Fortunately, the plots usually come back to me, after a few minutes. 🙂

    (I’m not implying that you’d have these same problems with memory, just saying).

  95. songbird says

    There is something positive about CRTs: if you are okay with the picture, they make good outdoor sets. I mean, you’ve got to cover them, and I wouldn’t leave them out in winter time, but they hold up really well. You can leave them out for months, and they’ll last years, that way. They hold up to the dew, and they are heavy enough not to be affected by strong winds.

    I had a set up where I left my old Roku out, but just brought in the remote. Amazingly, the Roku survived a bit of lightning, (not a direct strike) though the TV did not. Rookie mistake: you’ve got to unplug everything. Lightning will leap the gap in a breaker switch.

  96. Mr. Hack says

    Nah, I’m done with it. It went blank and I always maintained that I would keep it “until it dies”, which is has (for me anyway). I think that its even difficult to have them repaired these days.

    I was a happy camper for most of my life with the old 35MM photo camera system. I owned three different Leicas and they worked beautifully, but when they were burglarized from my home, I knew it was time to move on to newer digital technology. I’m not even sure that Leica still makes the old style cameras anymore? I do know that the old CRT’s are long obsolete.

  97. Blue-Ray player… own a good Sony DVD player

    If you don’t have a PS4, you can also get a standard blu-ray player so cheaply nowadays (and use that in the intermediate before PS5 is out, which will have a 4k player).

    It’s funny you don’t have blu-ray in 2020, just as they are already becoming unfashionable with the mass of people. But even standard blu-ray can often be still a lot better picture quality, than any streaming, because bitrate is much higher.

    What kind of films do you watch? In the last 10 years, quite a lot of the classic films have had amazing restorations for blu-ray, and no streaming service has enough bitrate to capture it as well.

    n playback streaming through the internet can be directly viewed on my new TV, including the Criterion station that Matra

    For that channel, maybe you need the Roku app, like he said.

    I guess most people watch YouTube through the app on the television. But on my television (old Sony KD-55A1 OLED) interface is inconvenient, and for me it is easier/quicker to use a chromecast for throwing on YouTube videos.

  98. anonymous coward says

    The medieval period was of course followed by an age of deep decline, when Europeans shed superstition, created science, invented everything, conquered and ruled the world, multiplied manyfold and so on.

    Fake and gay cuckold doctrine.

    Science and rationalism was invented during the Middle Ages; everything that came later is a steep decline into superstition and pagan mysticism. The West had been running on fumes and destroying the bedrock built during the Middle Ages ever since.

    As for ‘conquered the world’ – not sure it’s a good thing. You should have picked your own sugarcane.

  99. Dicentim says

    Perhaps what you’re claiming is the truth, trus, трус.

    But I’m pretty sure that you weren’t there and read it from others who weren’t there either.

    So, I’d suggest that you experience something of those levels of science and rationalism; some areas in the Indian subcontinent could do, or perhaps Somalia.

    No offence, but from your pseudonym, language and ideals, I assume that you are one of those incels who don’t have access to women and thus long for a time when they suppose that they would have been knights and nobles-because they read about it in some teenage novel or played it on some computer game- and thus remedy to that, but the sad news is that you would probably have been a serf at best.

    I understand that this predicament of yours is compounded by material poverty as good finances can attract the women that your lack of charisma and personality prevents; so I assume that visiting those medieval third world wonders is off limits for you; the next best thing would be to dispense with plumbing, with other things too, but do focus on plumbing.

  100. Europe Europa says

    Is patriotism in Russia associated with a particular class background or equal across all backgrounds? In Britain I would say patriotism and pride in WW2/military is more or less a working class thing, in general the higher up the social ladder in Britain the less time people have for patriotism.

    I find that British “intellectual” types are typically indifferent and often hostile to Britain as a country and its history. I doubt there’s many working class native British at BLM protests, the whites would be mostly middle class students and even professional types.

  101. Autists Anonymous Rehab Camp Fugitive says

    Actors are already a mediocre race requiring no talent, the Romans thought they were lower than prostitutes, because at least those didn’t need to fake their emotions.

  102. Autists Anonymous Rehab Camp Fugitive says

    (And here’s why that’s awesome)

  103. Korenchkin says

    tips fedora

  104. anonymous coward says

    …some areas in the Indian subcontinent could do, or perhaps Somalia.

    What do those pagan shitholes have to do with a free, ethnically cohesive and Christian Western Europe?

    …they suppose that they would have been knights and nobles

    What do knights and nobles have to do with Medieval Europe?

  105. I have always been amazed by the idealization of the Middle Ages, especially Western European Middle Ages. Of course it was not the hell that some Enlightenment thinkers pretended it was, but neither was it some Roman de Chevalierie idealistic fantasy.

    Same goes for the Slav/Ancient Rus idealization trope in some Soviet historical novels and of course a somewhat more justifiable myth of the Islamic Golden Age. These centuries were times of great suffering everywhere, but then this century of ours is no better, except for the advances in technology (which are a mixed blessing anyway).

  106. Mr. Hack says

    What I’ll do is set-up the new TV and try whatever technologies that are inherent in the product as is. My technologically literate friend came to visit me last night and explained that the new TV will have the ability to use the wi-fi already within my home. Also, I’ll just initially use the Sony DVD player that I already have and see what the quality is like for viewing the DVD’s that I already own.

    I have eclectic tastes, and so my viewing of DVDs reflects this, anything from documentaries to even animated cartoons. I go through phases, it might be a couple months of science fiction then a few months of film noir. Criterion (Janus) films always seem to be in the mix somewhere.

    Since I have you “on the line” as they say, I have a question for you. I’ve been meaning to go back and review your commenting history here to determine a couple of pieces of music that you once contrasted, a few months back . They were classical pieces, by I believe, Beethoven and Mozart (maybe Bach?). You were using them to contrast their relative merits, similarities and differences. They were even similar sounding pieces of music. It was an interesting discussion centered around who was the greatest composer of all time. Since then, I’ve always meant to listen to both and hear this contrast for myself. If you remember these pieces, or perhaps better yet can cite the comment, it would be quite helpful. Thanks for sharing your opinions, that always seem to be quite worthwhile.

  107. Korenchkin says

    You can nitpick any idealized period to death, in fact you can do it with any historical narrative as they’re, by their nature, after-the-fact analyses which will always have to jettison some part which doesn’t align with it’s narrative
    It’s more useful to look at what those idealizations depict, and what they ask of modern society

    A fiction is not necessarily a lie, basic example: Homer Simpson is yellow vs Homer Simpson is purple
    Not all fictions are equal ofcourse, but nations with stronger national fictions have stronger cohesion and stability

    The US Fiction at the moment is collapsing in on itself while the Chinese fiction stands strong, the Soviet fiction collapsed in the 1990s and Russia is now forging a new one from it’s history
    This happens in every nation and it comes naturally, it has happened in the past and will continue to happen
    Being angry or weirded out by it serves no function, other then tooting your own horn alongside other pseudo-intellectuals who pretend to be noble monks of objectivity who are so above the swine around them

  108. Dicentim says

    At least, the Islamic world really went down afterwards and hasn’t achieved much since, so the idea of a past golden age as an ideal is understandable, as the idea of antiquity must have been in Europe, during the renaissance.

    For the West and Russia, the idealising of the middle ages occurs because of different reasons:

    1- Catholic (and Orthodox) fundamentalism: similar to Salafism; longing for an age when the Church was dominant and enforced certain values; obviously, one has to be quite religious in a certain way to follow that.

    2- Royalist absolitism: often related to the above, yet focused on a society divided into estates; for various reasons (sometimes due to real or assumed lineage and sometimes due to a deluded perception of social mobility in that period), proponents tend to assume that in that order of things, their natural place would be with the nobility of the sword.

    The first point, I understand; people were brought up in a certain way and have certain convictions that cannot change, that’s religion; the second point can also be defended to a certain extent, there are plenty of aristocrats in Europe and some see it as their birthright to rule; Franco’s Spain was a last major attempt to impose something like that in the West. The other points that follow, have no historical or moral legitimacy whatsoever and they unfortunately cover most of the demographic of those idealising the middle ages.

    3- Hate of modernity, pluralism of ideas, technology etc: sometimes caused by the thought that all the problems that we have today (we do and always have) wouldn’t have occured if we hadn’t opened Pandora’s box and stayed in that ignorance is bliss state; if there was no mass transportation, there wouldn’t be people from other continents walking around; with no vaccination, there would be fewer of them; without academia and media, the women would be tame etc.

    4- Failure in life: very much related to the above and seeking a reset to zero, the medieval world being a form of that and a post-cataclysmic world with the few survivors reverting to a pre-modern lifestyle being another; for some reason again, the proponents, who presently suffer socially and economically, presume that they would do well or that everyone would do as badly as they in either alternative. It is clearly dangerous, because people seeking that want to destroy society and the world to have that clean slate; many quite non-religious people with these ideals joined ISIS.

    5- LOTR, GOT, Harry Potter, World of Warcraft etc. Self explanatory and related to the above but characterised more by not actually doing or planning anything.

    6- Finally, various movements sought to idealise that period of time by projecting modern conflicts into it: the Soviets fought against the Nazi-like Crusaders, the crusades and reconquista were racial conflicts, war with the Mongols was a racial conflict or a conflict against or for communism, depending on the agenda. People take all that in and imagine that their views on race, nationalism etc. were shared by medieval people, who in fact were focused on religion, land ownership and power.

    My interlocutor(s) here is (I’ll use singular nevertheless) clearly not a religious person as to my knowledge fundamentalism prohibits the use of vulgar and foul language; I also very much doubt that he is an aristocrat; that leaves us with the four latter points.

  109. Korenchkin says

    You criticize others for creating imagined realities yet here you are describing absurd strawmen
    I’ve yet to meet a person who thinks along the lines you described, in particular point number 3

  110. Korenchkin says

    Then again, one can encounter all kinds of loonies on the internet, so maybe I just haven’t visited that particular circus yet

  111. Hyperborean says

    The Gothic Revival and Romanticism hardly turned 19th century Europe into a wasteland, quite the opposite.

  112. I’ve yet to meet a person who thinks along the lines you described, in particular point number 3

    Ted Kaczynski?

  113. Korenchkin says

    He’s an extreme outlier, no?
    And I figured the recent wave of people agreeing with Kaczynski were doing it in jest

  114. Royalist absolitism: often related to the above, yet focused on a society divided into estates; for various reasons (sometimes due to real or assumed lineage and sometimes due to a deluded perception of social mobility in that period)… Franco’s Spain was a last major attempt to impose something like that in the West.

    Not necessarily absolutism, but this was a very viable path until the wrong side won the first world war. Indeed, if the correct side had won (or if the Holy Alliance had been maintained), we would be speaking of liberal capital-driven democracy as some weird anachronistic idea that was momentarily big in the defunct Anglo world until 100 years ago…

  115. He has his modern-day followers, not all of whom are marginals:


    Little Kaczynski Moments have been popping up in the most unexpected places — the Fox News website, for example, which ran a piece by Keith Ablow called “Was the Unabomber Correct?” in 2013. After summarizing some of Kaczynski’s dark predictions about the steady erosion of individual autonomy in a world where the tools and systems that create prosperity are too complex for any normal person to understand, Ablow — Fox’s “expert on psychiatry” — came to the conclusion that Kaczynski was “precisely correct in many of his ideas” and even something of a prophet. “Watching the development of Facebook heighten the narcissism of tens of millions of people, turning them into mini reality-TV versions of themselves,” he wrote. “I would bet he knows, with even more certainty, that he was onto something.”

    That same year, in the leading environmentalist journal Orion, a “recovering environmentalist” named Paul Kingsnorth — who’d stunned his fellow activists in 2008 by announcing that he’d lost hope — published an essay about the disturbing experience of reading Kaczynski’s manifesto for the first time. If he ended up agreeing with Kaczynski, “I’m worried that it may change my life,” he confessed. “Not just in the ways I’ve already changed it (getting rid of my telly, not owning a credit card, avoiding smartphones and e-readers and sat-navs, growing at least some of my own food, learning practical skills, fleeing the city, etc.) but properly, deeply.”

    By 2017, Kaczynski was making inroads with the conservative intelligentsia — in the journal First Things, home base for neocons like Midge Decter and theologians like Michael Novak, deputy editor Elliot Milco described his reaction to the manifesto in an article called “Searching for Ted Kaczynski”: “What I found in the text, and in letters written by Kaczynski since his incarceration, was a man with a large number of astute (even prophetic) insights into American political life and culture. Much of his thinking would be at home in the pages of First Things.” A year later, Foreign Policy published “The Next Wave of Extremism Will Be Green,” an editorial written by Jamie Bartlett, a British journalist who tracks the anti-civ movement. He estimated that a “few thousand” Americans were already prepared to commit acts of destruction. Citing examples such as the Standing Rock pipeline protests in 2017, Bartlett wrote, “The necessary conditions for the radicalization of climate activism are all in place. Some groups are already showing signs of making the transition.”


    This sort of violent activism has been redirected through BLM today, it seems.

  116. Korenchkin says

    human tendencies to delude ourselves with comforting illusions

    These are not made for the sake of comfort but more often inspiration and legitimization (for the latter the most famous example is the Chinese Mandate of Heaven)
    And since they’re in the vast majority of cases based on real people, real events, real places and real writings I do not feel it’s fair to mark them as delusions, it’s a too dismissive term

    Take the Mandate of Heaven again as an example, it’s essentially a label for a consolidated and stable regime which it loses once it becomes divided, unstable and eventually overthrown
    In the narrative one loses the Mandate by having bad rulers, and historically bad rulers often cause instabilities in their states (gross oversimplification, but you get the gist of it I hope)

    It’s more of a pattern recognition tool then a flight of fancy

  117. Dicentim says

    I agree; those are paper thin stereotypes as real people are usually driven by multiple motives, some of which might contradict each other or be affected by fast changing circumstances; the description of each individual’s ever changing aims and views is beyond the span of this comment section, so I resorted to these oversimplifications based on my short reflection regarding the issue that was raised by a fellow commenter with the hope that they may give a concise illustration of the my thoughts on said issue.

    I wouldn’t have assumed that number 3 could be real until receiving comments based on that motivation, accompanied by some crude language further confirming the reality of the simplicity of mind that some literate (!) people have.

  118. Dicentim says

    I agree, but those were artistic movements (that by the way, I admire); no one actually gave up rifles, steam and steel.

  119. I get your point. It is sacred symbols in a civilizational semantic field. The historical mythologizing is necessary to create social unity and allow the functioning of a state/nation/culture/civilization. I’m okay with that, people need something or other to believe to.

    But the real question is: what about human beings striving for an objective assessment of Reality?

    I know it is impossible to get there, but shouldn’t we at least try to move into that direction?

    Because if we decide that it’s okay to live in a subjective symbolic space, then how do we connect with other people whose symbols are different from ours?

    Pious fictions are not enough, the XXth century has made this abundantly evident…

  120. Dicentim says

    By absolutism, I meant the rule of Citizen Capet and his ancien régime predecessors who had no other legitimacy than divine right to rule, enforced by mercenary troops.

    Monarchy evolved throughout the long XIXth century (1789-1919) and took forms inherited either from Napoleon (there were several emperors that wars brought down) or the people’s monarchies (July monarchy as in Kings of the French and of the Belgians as opposed to King of France); both were tied to the nations that they ruled, included nationalism and were accountable to their peoples, hence the easy falls during defeats or setbacks.

    I doubt that there was a good side in the Great War but I agree that if it were concluded with a Central Powers’ victory liberalism would have been seen as something peculiar to Britain, the dominions, America and perhaps the rest of the Western Hemisphere (Orwell’s Oceania). It is most likely that there would still have been a round two with consequences as wild as those in our real timeline.

  121. Hyperborean says

    I agree, but those were artistic movements (that by the way, I admire); no one actually gave up rifles, steam and steel.

    I don’t understand your point then, even sociall reactionary ISIS embraces technology nowadays.

  122. ISIS embraces technology nowadays.

    They use it, but they are unable to create it. To create modern technology you need science, you need R&D, you need rationality. This is how the Islamic Golden Age was lost, the Mutazilite religious rationalism was replaced with pious Hanbali religious literalism. Muslims were quite near to a kind of scientific and philosophical “Renaissance ” in the Xth century AD. They were stopped in their tracks by the Islamic Zealots who might be viewed as the ancestors of Wahhabism/Salafism. The spiritual ancestors of ISIS killed Islamic science and philosophy, ISIS just continued in their tracks.

  123. Korenchkin says

    Mongol raids didn’t help either, like in the case of Baghdad

  124. Dicentim says

    I don’t understand it either; I never would have thought it possible and was surprised to find someone on this very blog, who with great zeal tried to defend the idea that everything that came after the middle ages somehow constituted a decline; my attempts to enumerate some of the many achievements of the Western civilisation that occurred since then came to no avail.

  125. The capture of Baghdad by Hulagu happened after the beginning of the Islamic Decadence (they call it the Age of Unraveling = Ahd El Inhitat). In fact, Baghdad was conquered because Islamic society had become decadent.

    As soon as Al Mutazila have been replaced by the Hanbali scholars as chief ideologues, Islam passed its peak development. Besides, the Mongol did not conquer the whole Islamic Oumma, far from it. But the spiritual and ideological damage caused by the Islamic literalism was nearly universal.

    Only the Shiites kept some philosophical thought and some scientific innovation alive, but after the fall of the Fatimid Caliphate they were without a state sponsor (and for all their scientific prowess the Ismaili Shia were much more mystical than the Sunni Mutazila).

  126. inertial says

    Do you really think this memorial worships war?

  127. Korenchkin says

    objective assessment of Reality

    What is more logical then supporting that which unifies and consolidates the state?
    If you have a repulsion to faith, you can still accept it as a meme (in the old Dawkins sense)

    Simple example: soldiers get told their victory is ensured by a higher power, as a result they fight harder and don’t rout, thus winning the battle
    Wether this was by divine intervention or by good encouragement, the result remains the same
    It depends how you interpret the pattern I suppose
    A balance between the subjective and objective is necessary in my opinion, and I think the concept of memes is a good objective argument for it (a bit ironic given Dawkins’ own opinions on religion)

    Beyond that you have the concept of nations, ethnicities, tribes, groups, adopted families etc. all of which can be objectively picked apart with enough effort, but the end result is often chaos

    Now all of this should not be disheartening, but it should also not be an excuse for uncontrolled flights of fancy
    I’m still too young and unwise to properly define all of this, so I’ll leave it at that

  128. anonymous coward says

    Muslims were quite near to a kind of scientific and philosophical “Renaissance ” in the Xth century AD.

    Persians, not “Muslims”. And they were only very nominally Muslim. (Not much time has passed since the conquest and forced conversion of Persia.)

  129. anonymous coward says

    Medieval Europe built the inheritance you’ve been lavishly wasting ever since. Of course spending is flashier than creating. Spending also makes you feel like you’re “rich”, because you’re conspicuously consuming, not saving or investing.

    Unfortunately you’re at the end of the rope, and a future Europe will make even bare-assed afroniggers blanch with horror.

  130. Persians

    In Al Andalus?


  131. anonymous coward says

    Islamic scientific renaissance in Al-Andalus

    Attention, we’re reaching previously unimagined levels of we-wuz-kangdom now.

  132. They were even similar sounding pieces of music. It was an interesting discussion


    I was just mentioning Beethoven Piano Concerto 3 vs Mozart 24. Because it is still on the borderline of early Beethoven, and he is not yet the original composer he was within even just a year or two later.

    Which do you prefer? (this is not judgement of Beethoven, and it was composed just before his genius is in “take off velocity”)

    Beethoven 3 (1800)

    Mozart 24 (1786)

  133. Mr. Hack says

    I’ll try and not duck your question. I’ve been listening to both as I’m preparing to put on a small birthday party for a good friend of mine. In the meantime, I’ll just say that what God forgot to whisper into Mozart’s left ear, he continued into Beethoven’s right…give me some time to listen again, more carefully. Thanks for making it so easy for me to listen to both!

  134. Another popular one compare are Mozart’s Jupiter and Beethoven 1st symphonies (both in C major).

    Mozart Jupiter (1788)

    Beethoven First (1800)

    This is still in the early Beethoven, as his original genius is just getting to the “take off velocity”.

  135. After one serious listening, it’s way to early for me to answer the question as to which piece of music I like better. After about 5-6 more listenings perhaps I could make myself tilt one way or the other. Here are, however, a few of my thoughts about these two pieces.

    Beethoven 3 seems more complex and seems to have more musical themes and sub themes going on than Mozart 24. This doesn’t automatically catapult it to the front of the line though, although it’s certainly not detrimental either.

    Mozart’s 24 is a beautiful piece of music that alternates all the way through with a petulant and more introverted exchange between the piano solos and the contrasting larger sounds of the orchestra. What I like about the piece, is the way Mozart is able to seemingly leap forward and backwards and instill what sounds to my ear like forays into musical styles of different eras. For instance at 2:19, the piano solo is reminiscent of something sweetly phrased by Chopin, and much later at 14:52 like something straight out of the baroque period. Simply extravagant.

    Beethoven’s 3 maintains a virtuoso piano player’s complete attention throughout the whole piece. I don’t know who was more interesting to watch as to facial expressions or body language, Bernstein or Zimerman? I really enjoyed a lot of the woodwind supporting roles, interspersed with the piano solos. I can see why you’re so obviously enamored with Beethoven and his abilities to craft such technically advanced music so early on his career. At times, especially towards the end, it seems that some of the musical ideas weren’t as evenly incorporated into the whole, as might have been done.

    So, I didn’t duck your question, and after a closer listen I haven’t been able to make up my mind. Both really fine pieces of music and I’m better off for listening to them, thanks to you!