Hans Prinzhorn’s Aphorisms

The current TOO article is an introduction to the thought of Hans Prinzhorn, a German (“Leadership and the Vital Order: Selected Aphorisms by Hans Prinzhorn,” translated by Joseph D. Pryce). Quite a few of his ideas resonate with recent essays here. Perhaps most central is this:

We can hold out no hope whatever for the successful creation of the sort of community that is constructed by ideologists on the basis of purely rational considerations, for the projects that are hatched out in the mind of the rationalist are most definitely not analogous to the development of living forms in nature, no matter how often the contrary position has been proclaimed by false prophets.

Prinzhorn is warning about the creation of blueprints for society without any concern for human nature. In the language of current psychology, intellectuals have constructed various utopian scenarios, taking advantage of explicit processing and often ignoring our evolved psychology (my academic version is here; see particularly the Discussion section).

Prinzhorn is also quite aware that these blueprints for utopian societies are typically couched in moral terms, historically often with a large flavor of Christianity–“the nihilistic Will to Power that conceals its true nature behind the cloak of such humanitarian ideals as humility, solicitude for the weak, the awakening of the oppressed masses, the plans for universal happiness, and the fever-swamp vision of perpetual progress.” As noted especially with the Puritans and their descendants, these moral prescriptions have a unique appeal to Western peoples–an aspect of Western individualism and concomitant moral universalism.

Reflecting the concerns of his time, Prinzhorn is most concerned with socialism, seeing it as “demagogic assault on the part of the inferior rabble against the nobler type of human being.” In our time, the greatest concern is the invasion of traditionally White nations by massive numbers of non-Whites.

This raises an interesting issue:  White advocates tend to gloss over social class and  IQ differences among Whites, seeing Whites as having interests in common as Whites. National Socialism bridged this gap, seeing the society as an organic whole based ultimately on a long cultural tradition and shared biological kinship, while nevertheless preserving a hierarchical structure of inclusiveness for all social classes. Because of the appeal of National Socialism to the German working class, the left shifted gears: In the post-World War II era, the most influential intellectual movements (e.g., the Frankfurt School, the New York Intellectuals, and pretty much the entire intellectual left) have championed mass immigration, multiculturalism, and the dispossession of Whites.

It is no accident that the  White working class has suffered the most from these changes–or that they are the most angered by the current regime. Nor is it an accident that this shift toward White dispossession by the left was championed mainly by Jewish intellectual movements given the very strong overtones of anti-Semitism characteristic of National Socialism and its conception of society based on blood kinship with roots in traditional German culture.

The result is a new elite, substantially Jewish but with a considerable component of deracinated Whites–many of them people like the sociopathic Morris Dees whose championing of  “oppressed” non-Whites has paid off handsomely for himself (see Steve Sailer’s “Morris Dees’ Poverty Palace“).

The question now is whether this new utopia of multiculturalism premised on White dispossession will ultimately fail because of the lack of fit with our evolved psychology–as Prinzhorn suggests. The research strongly suggests that multi-ethnic societies have a number of built-in costs–particularly greater conflict, greater psychological alienation from the society as a whole, and less willingness to contribute to public goods like health care.

There are signs that the left is beginning to be aware that the utopian transformations they have in mind are not going to be easily achieved in the long run and that there is a backlash brewing from dispossessed Whites. Nevertheless, for the left there is no going back–only an increasing commitment to manage these tensions, by force if need be.

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