'I've Really Put You Through a Lot, Haven't I?'

Everybody's favorite Bond villain, Klaus Schwab, is back, taking his carbon footprint on the Road To Bali to advocate once more for a fascist takeover of the world, let by a combination of oligarchs and their puppets in "democratic" governments. All that's missing is the scar and the pussycat.

Klaus Schwab kicked off this year’s B-20 meeting in Indonesia Monday by calling for a wholesale “restructuring” of the world’s economic, political, social, and ecological systems. During his call for a global overhaul, Schwab – a German economist who serves as chairman of the World Economic Forum – said the restructuring will not only take “several years” to accomplish, but will likely include suffering for ordinary people. 

“If you look at all the challenges, we can speak about a multi-crisis, an economic, political, social, ecological and institutional crisis. But actually, what we have to confront is a deep systemic — and structural — restructuring of our world. And this will take some time. And the world will look differently after we have gone through this transition process,” he said.

How much more of this monster does the world need to see before the alarm bells go off? Even scarier is this thought: maybe this is what everybody really wants. If you're not one of them, fight back with this.

THE COLUMN: DEI, Monster, DIE

Who would have thought that the essence of our modern cold (so far) civil war would not be capturing the radio stations and newspaper offices to proclaim the revolution but rather the acronyms, abbreviations, and contractions—the language itself? During the Eisenhower administration, the newly coined term "bafflegab" was often employed by the pro-Democrat media to describe Ike's often circumlocutory way of speaking. They thought Eisenhower, the victorious Supreme Allied Commander in World War II, was "stupid," especially as compared with their poorly shod wonderboy, Adlai Stevenson, whom Ike beat twice. Little did they know that Eisenhower was deliberately obfuscatory, to keep his real intentions and meanings private.

Milton A. Smith, assistant general counsel for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the inventor of the word, defined it as: “multiloquence characterized by consummate interfusion of circumlocution or periphrasis, inscrutability, and other familiar manifestations of abstruse expatiation commonly utilized for promulgations implementing Procrustean determinations by governmental bodies.” Today we recognize it as the lingua franca of the bureaucrat-educator class, especially those involved in mid-levels of government and those studying for their master's degree in education. A casual glance at the academic writings of Michelle Obama and "doctor" Jill Biden will immediately grasp its essence.

Ah, but such sesquipedalianism and deliberate obfuscation is rapidly going out of fashion, mostly because the TikTok generation can barely speak English, much less comprehend words with Latin roots. Among the young, Ebonics has combined with elision to create a whole new cant, slang, patois and vernacular designed to be understood solely by its adherents and meant to mask its real meaning. But rather than use long, real words, they now create new ones by means of contractions , abbreviations, acronyms, or simple neologisms. If, for example, you don't know what "Yeet the Teet" means, you could look it up. Indeed "transgenderism" will open a whole new linguistic world for you.

Acronyms, of course, date far back—think of Gerald Ford's WIN campaign, "whip inflation now"—but one of the most recent, and insidious, is DEI, which stands for "diversity, equity, and inclusion," the latest totalitarian assault on professional standards. For a time it stood for "diversity, inclusion, and equity" until one of the few non-illiterates on the Left realized that its acronym spelled out DIE," which after all is what they really want us to do. (It reminds me of the scene in Dr. Strangelove, in which Gen. Turgidson wonders what kind of name that is, and gets this response: " He changed it when he became a citizen. Used to be Merkwürdigliebe." To which Turgidson, played by George C. Scott, replies: "a Kraut by any other name, huh?")

Maybe they should have gone with IED, for improvised explosive device, which is really what the whole thing is: a Strangelovian domestic terrorism bomb, which we've learned to stop worrying about and instead love. In any case, here's what they want:

Diversity is the presence of differences that may include race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, ethnicity, nationality, socioeconomic status, language, (dis)ability, age, religious commitment, or political perspective.  Populations that have been-and remain- underrepresented among practitioners in the field and marginalized in the broader society.

Equity is promoting justice, impartiality and fairness within the procedures, processes, and distribution of resources by institutions or systems.  Tackling equity issues requires an understanding of the root causes of outcome disparities within our society.

Inclusion is an outcome to ensure those that are diverse actually feel and/or are welcomed.  Inclusion outcomes are met when you, your institution, and your program are truly inviting to all.  To the degree to which diverse individuals are able to participate fully in the decision-making processes and development opportunities within an organization or group.

I've bold-faced the bald-faced cultural Marxist argot of their terms so you might see through the benign mask of caring and sharing and see the nasty monster's puss beneath it. You will notice that exactly none of these things contributes anything to the advancement of the enterprise; they're simply more Marxist revanchism for the Lost Cause of their beloved Soviet Union, which died of incompetence in 1991, and for which they have never forgiven the Russians.

One aspect of the horror show is, of course, the oligarchic World Economic Forum and its Great Reset, headed up by Klaus Schwab, who in fact is a kraut by actual name. Another is the ascendant, now-institutional Left, which has captured the high ground of the U.S. government, higher education, Protestantism and Reform Judaism, much of mainstream Roman Catholicism, and a good deal of corporate America, which should know better.

Recently, Jonathan Haidt, a professor of psychology at New York University, announced that he is resigning from the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, thanks to a new DEI prescription that anyone presenting professional research must push "equity, inclusion, and anti-racism goals," the word "anti-racism" having become the new, pro-active version of simple "diversity," seeking to replace one form of "discrimination" with another. "I believe that the conflict between truth and social justice is likely to become unmanageable," he said.

As Newspeak has grown in reach, it's become obvious to those who would wish this country ill disguise their harmful intentions with the language of therapeutic Christianity (strange bedfellows indeed). The diabolical Saul Alinsky made this clear with Rule No. 4 from Rules for Radicals: “Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules.” As Alinsky famously noted: "You can kill them with this, for they can no more obey their own rules than the Christian church can live up to Christianity."

If, say, a faith preaches "thou shalt not kill" then pester it with questions about war and capital punishment. If the religion preaches equality, they turn it into "equity." If its adherents have fostered a culture of professional excellence, challenge it with "inclusion" regardless of intelligence, skill, or aptitude. And when a business or institution claims to want diversity of thought, accuse them of racism; you really can kill them with this. DEI thus becomes the perfect Marxist weapon against the past, against custom, against family, against societal homogeneity, and against cultural self-defense. In this way does Critical Theory attack the very foundations of Western civilization.

The neo-Marxists' favorite weaponized word, however, is "tolerance." Alinsky-like, the Left has perverted this word from its original meaning, "endurance, the ability to bear pain or adversity; patience, fortitude," and has now come to mean "welcoming diversity, inclusion, and equity"—or else. That is to say, a word that means "acceptance" only in its most dire, involuntary sense, is currently transmogrifying into celebrating vibrant differences until your cooperation and acquiescence is no longer needed in the fundamental transformation of your society. Like the radioactive meteorite  on the Witley estate in the 1965 Boris Karloff film (based on H.P. Lovecraft's story, The Color Out of Space), their assault on the language poisons everything with which it comes into contact, eventually causing the grotesquely disfigured host to burst into flames and burn down the entire house.

So DEI, monster, die: this means you. There's nothing baffling about this gab, and they're not kidding when they say DEI, even if they spell it wrong.

Against the Great Reset: 'The Great Reset, Feminist-Style'

Today the Pipeline presents the last of our excerpts from some of the essays contained in Against the Great Reset: 18 Theses Contra the New World Order, to be published on October 18 by Bombardier Books and distributed by Simon and Schuster, and available now for pre-order at the links.

Part IV: THE PERSONAL

Excerpt from "The Great Reset, Feminist-Style" by Janice Fiamengo

Introduction: Equity for Women

What would a Great Reset mean for women and girls—and the men who love them? In COVID-19: The Great Reset (2020), WEF founder Klaus Schwab and his coauthor Thierry Malleret do not address the status of women at length. But they do refer, on the very first page, to the search for social justice, stating that a positive consequence of Covid-19 has been its exposure of the “fault lines of the world” and its galvanization of the will to redress them.

By far the most destabilizing fault line in the western world is the one that feminism has opened between men and women. It is set to widen even further if Reset proponents have their way. In its institutional forms, feminism is a radical ideology alleging that women are oppressed in a patriarchal order created and maintained for male benefit through institutions such as the traditional family. Developed in the North American universities of the 1970s and 1980s, feminism’s assertions about male control of women have spread far into the wider society as feminist students graduated into careers in teaching, journalism, law, social work, public relations, and business. Though often claiming to seek equality between the sexes (itself a dubious, oft-unrealizable goal), feminists regularly call for special privileges for women and corresponding restrictions for men.

Feminism shares with the Schwabian Reset a utopian vision of a reimagined world in which the historically disempowered will be compensated and protected by enlightened leaders who will manage all aspects of our social, economic, and domestic lives. In this transformed world, a never-before-achievable righting of injustice will become possible as the enemies of fairness and of the common good—the selfish, the competitive, the predatory, and the retrograde—will be once and for all neutralized by government fiat.

Discussions of post-Covid she-covery (recovery with a female face) focused mainly on four feminist Reset blueprints: 1) liberating women from the unfair burdens of family life; 2) empowering women to close wage and employment gaps; 3) mandating leadership roles for women, especially in politics, business, and academia; and 4) advancing the sexual agenda of the #MeToo movement. All, as will be shown, are underpinned by profoundly antimale assumptions and contempt for established social and legal norms. Whether any of these blueprints will make women happier is a highly doubtful proposition: bitter and resentful women, rather than contented ones, are precisely what Reset discussions and policies are designed to create.

Background: Covid-19 and Inordinate Female Suffering

A canard about Covid-19 peddled by Schwab and Malleret was that the virus exposed and exacerbated social divides, hurting those who were already vulnerable. In reality, as the authors well know, it was not Covid itself, which in their estimation was not “a new existential threat,” so much as the draconian policies of governments and health officials, amplified by media-induced terror and compliance, that shaped social divides.

Government lockdowns and masking/distancing policies, often brutally and unequally enforced, created Covid winners and losers by determining which businesses could open, whether and how many family members could gather, and whether children could attend school or play together. Social elites working in government, media, academia, and the corporate world, their paycheques and lifestyles largely intact, demonized as “Covidiots” anyone who defied or even
questioned public health orders, sometimes encouraging readers to report those who broke any of the arcane rules (unless, of course, the rule-breakers were Black Lives Matter protesters, in which case even   e prime minister of Canada knelt with them in solidarity).

Against the Great Reset

On sale Oct. 18: pre-order now at the links above.

Along with daily counts of “cases,” hospitalizations, and deaths, the media offered a steady barrage of stories designed to highlight Covid heroes and Covid villains, channeling sympathy toward those deemed to be legitimately suffering or bravely assisting, and encouraging contempt for alleged conspiracy theorists or “Far Right” adherents (mainly white men) who posed a danger. Here, the familiar polarities of ideological feminism came into play: women were typically presented as the innocent victims of a male-dominated society’s injustices—that is, when they weren’t outstanding leaders keeping the virus at bay or valiant frontline nurses caring for the sick.

In the earliest days of Covid, medical data showed that men were more likely than women to die from the virus or to experience the most severe forms of illness, accounting for about 80 percent of acute care admissions and up to 70 percent of the dead. Yet even as these staggering reports hit the headlines, media accounts were busy framing the pandemic as a women’s issue.

By March 8, 2020, when the effects of the virus were being felt in Europe but had not yet hit North America, the emphasis on female suffering had already been established. The BBC World Service informed readers that “Across Asia, it is women who are being disproportionately affected.” A humanitarian advisor to the U.N., Maria Holtsberg, was quoted saying that “Crisis always exacerbates gender inequality.” According to the article, women were bearing the brunt of the pandemic not only as primary caregivers for their children, forced to stay home when schools closed (with no mention of the breadwinner husbands continuing their work and thus at presumably greater risk of infection) but also—and somewhat contradictorily—as the majority of workers on the “front lines.” The article detailed horrific working conditions of nurses in China and elsewhere in which nurses were forced to have their heads shaved and denied washroom breaks while working overtime. Women were also vulnerable, according to the article, as migrant workers with few rights, and in retail and informal sectors of the economy hard-hit by store closures.

The mantra that would be repeated in countless later articles was thus established: as stated by Mohammad Naciri, regional director of U.N. Women Asia, “Women are playing an indispensable role in the fight against the outbreak,” and must be at the forefront of all efforts to deal with it. Vulnerable male migrant workers, low-income shopkeepers, and men on other types of front lines—particularly long-haul truckers attempting to maintain supply chains even as much-needed rest stops, washrooms, and food outlets closed—were not mentioned. Essential service providers who were male— ambulance responders, restoration and clean-up crews, police officers, delivery drivers, all-night convenience store clerks, bus and train operators—were made invisible.

As the Covid situation worsened in Europe and spread to North America over the following weeks, the same ideas were amplified, with many commentators focusing on favored first-world feminist themes such as women’s greater emotional and caregiving burdens. Helen Lewis’s “The Coronavirus Is a Disaster for Feminism” declared that “Across the world, women’s independence will be a silent victim of the pandemic,” while Lucia Graves in “Women’s Domestic Burden Just Got Heavier with the Coronavirus” predicted that women’s unfair allocation of housework would be increased. Many commentators asserted that women and girls were, as always, doing the majority of caring for elderly or ill family members and, already economically more vulnerable than men, would see their earnings potential permanently impacted by layoffs.

Some of the claims were dramatic, others strikingly trivial. Heather Barr, the interim codirector of the Women’s Rights Division of Human Rights Watch, reported with somber emphasis that many now-unemployed women “faced losing their homes in countries from South Africa to the U.K.” and that even simply “maintaining access to water and utilities was a struggle for many, including in the United States.” Men, it seemed, never lost their homes or lacked the necessities of life (though men actually account for the vast majority of the homeless in western nations)...

For more from Against the Great Resetplease pre-order at the links above. 

The Great Reset: Testing, Testing…

It is disturbing to note that the greater portion of the public do not seem to be aware of the vast ideological movement for social transformation called the Great Reset. Those who are at least partially informed consider it merely another conspiracy theory. Some among the so-called elite—the media, the academy, the political stratum—consider the Great Reset as a rational and benevolent response to the specter of overpopulation and the threat of populist uprisings. Others among the patrician class, doubtless a majority, are engaged in promoting what they know to be a concerted attempt to destabilize and supplant the long-established order of ideally democratic governance that has slowly and incrementally characterized the liberal societies of the West, dating from the Magna Carta (1215) and the Peace of Westphalia (1648) to the approximate present.

We should make no mistake about this. The revolutionary project, whether denominated as the New World Order, the U.N.’s Agenda 2030, or the Davos-centered Great Reset—different terms for essentially the same impetus—under the influential leadership of Klaus Schwab is apocalyptic in its aims. It envisages a world in which the middle-class will have been expunged, the global census markedly winnowed, and a China-like social credit system introduced in which citizens will be under constant digital surveillance determining what they are allowed to possess, rent, use or spend.

Dr. Strangelove, I presume.

Those who are skeptical that a novel and destructive global dispensation actually exists and is already being installed need only observe recent developments in the social, economic and political world we have long taken for granted as normative. Years of media censorship, tainted elections, the presumably scientifically-backed hallucination of global warming or “climate change,” and consequent government policies shrinking the Constitutional space of individual autonomy, business as usual, and entrepreneurial initiative represent the first phase of authoritarian control.

Covid may be regarded as the second stage of the grand design, as Jeffrey Tucker warns in Liberty or Lockdown, for the effacement of classical democracy and its legacy of individual freedoms. Since the advent of Covid, it would be hard to deny that the “pandemic,” as it is known, resembles a near-universal experiment in massive and systematic social control. As Dr. Ben Carson remarks, the pandemic has been the "best mechanism government has had for controlling the people ever.”

Covid policies, regulations and restrictions—aka “mandates”—have only consolidated an official campaign hatching the gradual suppression of civil rights and personal privacy. Truth-tellers have been muzzled, banned, censored, demonized and lied about, always a sure sign that crucial knowledge is being obliterated from the public record. The process is falsely justified as preventing the spread of “disinformation.” Evident harms, patently caused by the vaccines, generating alarming statistics, and proliferating in nation after nation, are never candidly acknowledged. The usual mantra is that “the benefits far exceed the risks” and the standard utilitarian excuse is that the policy is intended “to ensure the common good”—a form of virtue signaling while enforcing failed measures and spurious remedies.

Everything we are undergoing now should serve to enlighten us respecting the plot being brought to bear against our comfort, security, and prosperity: new restrictions accompanying the introduction of ever-new “pandemics” and their variants; the insistence of applying problematic vaccines to the point of inoculating infants; the imposition of oppressive vaccine mandates on travel, a program now being tested in Canada under the imperial reign of Justin Trudeau; the entrenching of inflationary and ultimately recessionary fiscal policies that appear designed to cripple the economies of nations; the decoupling from biological fact to create gender confusion; the approved feminist assault on masculinity and the family unit; racial destabilization and the offensive on Western civilization under the rubric of “white supremacy”; and the attack on energy and food via moratoria on drilling and pipelines and the ban on commercial fertilizers—let them eat crickets.

It should be increasingly obvious, at any rate to any thinking person, that the public is being “softened up” to receive and accept the new official ordinance that is being prepared for it. A supine, passive and compliant population, accustomed to obedience, is the fertile field for what we might call the “great planting” and an eventual bumper crop of unprecedented controls and limitations on the practices and assumptions of ordinary existence. While farmland has been left to grow fallow, the political ground has been tilled, irrigated, and composted for an unholy harvest.

Progressivist ideology in government and media whose proponents, as Kim Holmes writes in The Closing of the Liberal Mind, are “in the business of reinventing knowledge… as an expedient political tool with which to gain and hold on to power,” comprises, as noted, the first stage of restraints and strictures upon an unsuspecting public. Covid and its plethora of prohibitive mandates constitute the second stage of implicit coercion, in effect, the testing of a manipulative strategy of public deception and oversight, of tacit regimentation for the “greater good.” The Great Reset is the third and final stage issuing in the total domination of a servile population and the inception of a New World Order eliminating the history, culture, art, rule of law and democratic Charters of free-market, individual-oriented and property-based egalitarian societies.

The Great Reset is real. It hovers over us with cumulous portentousness. It has been diligently prepared and successfully tested. The trend toward a totalitarian outcome cannot be plausibly doubted. And it must be resisted with all the legitimate means at our disposal, in the perpetual effort to alert a somnolent public, in the strengthening of electoral integrity, in depositions by our best and most courageous virologists and epidemiologists who have put their careers on the line to speak truth, in books like Vaclav Smil’s How the World Really Works, Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s The Real Anthony Fauci, Joseph Mercola’s and Ronnie Cummins’ The Truth About COVID-19, Naomi Wolf’s The Bodies of Others, César Madrigal’s The Globalist Agenda Is Real, and Michael Walsh’s edited volume Against the Great Reset, coming  October 18.

The last decade or two has served as a trial run for what is to come. Media censorship and administrative fiat culminating in the gradual suppression of long-standing freedoms and economic expectations have tenderized the public for a grim and reductive future in which they will own nothing and be miserable. The Great Reset is poised to profit from such prefatory conditioning in the laboratory of public affairs and political enactments. There is no getting around the brazen fact that we are now facing arguably the greatest menace ever to gather its forces against the liberal civilization of the West. This is not hyperbole. For the regents of deconstruction, it’s full speed ahead. The Great Reset is approaching steadily and with growing rapidity, unless we are vigilant, muster our resources, and meet the challenge with renewed vigor and conviction. Whether the effort will bear fruit remains to be decided, but there is, really, no alternative.

Against the Great Reset: 'The Economic Consequences of the Great Reset'

Continuing today, and for the next nine weeks, The Pipeline will present excerpts from each of the essays contained in Against the Great Reset: 18 Theses Contra the New World Order, to be published on October 18 by Bombardier Books and distributed by Simon and Schuster, and available now for pre-order at the links. 

 

Part III: THE ECONOMIC

Excerpt from "The Economic Consequences of the Great Reset" by David P. Goldman

The Great Reset is not a scheme for implementation in the distant future. It’s happening now, in the form of the most radical transformation of world economic policy in modern history, with the possible exception of World War II. The economic landscape that has emerged after the Covid-19 recession of 2019–2021 is radically different from what preceded it. The world economy has already been reset, and the perpetrators of the Great Reset want to make these changes irreversible.

One-fifth of the industrial nations’ GDP shifted to the balance sheet of governments during the Covid-19 pandemic, by far the biggest and fastest transfer of financial resources to governments in world history. Except for a few communist revolutions, no such transfer of economic power to governments from the private sector ever has occurred and never on a global scale. In 2019, the gross debt of the members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) stood at about 102 percent of their combined GDP; by 2021 the proportion had risen to about 122 percent, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF). That’s an increment of roughly $10 trillion in terms of current U.S. dollars.

That is not the only revolution in economic affairs to occur between March 2020 and the middle of 2021.

This is a utopian experiment as sweeping as the old Marxist vision of state-owned industries directed by a technocratic elite. Like all utopian experiments, it is doomed to failure. The redirection of investment toward the alleviation of supposed manmade climate change will destroy productivity and living standards. The massive increase in taxation proposed to alleviate income equality will crush entrepreneurship and economic growth. The inflation resulting from massive increases in government-created demand will erode the incomes of the least prosperous citizens of the United States and produce the opposite of the result that the Great Reset proposes to achieve, by making the poor poorer. And the destructive consequences of the Great Reset for the productivity of the Western industrial nations may well hand the leadership of the world economy to China by default.

Worst of all, the toxic combination of ballooning government debt and declining productivity is likely to set in motion a global financial crisis worse than the 2008 crash. The structural weakness at the center of the 2008 crisis was the overleveraging of consumer balance sheets, mainly through the mortgage market. The industrial nations relied on the borrowing capacity of governments to control the crisis, expanding the debt of industrial nations and the balance sheets of central banks at a pace without precedent in peacetime. The Covid-19 crisis has prompted an even faster expansion of government debt and central bank balance sheets, and the Great Reset proposes to continue this rate of expansion into the indefinite future. In place of consumer or corporate debt, government debt is now the finance system’s weak link; when the next crisis arrives, there will be no entity in the world with the capacity to bail out governments.

Economists and financiers associated with the Great Reset project argue that there is no limit to governments’ spending capacity as long as central banks suppress interest rates and the carrying costs of increased debt burden. This assertion ignores the most salient fact of the world economy, namely the presence of a strategic competitor to the West with a population half again as large as the combined population of the United States, the European Union, and Japan. China’s
economy measured by purchasing power parity is already one-fourth larger than America’s, and China’s ambition is to replace the United States as the center of the world financial system.

Against the Great Reset

On sale Oct. 18: pre-order now at the links above.

The monetary policy associated with the Great Reset will undermine the role of the U.S. dollar as the world’s principal reserve currency and shift the center of gravity in the world economy to China. The WEF and other elite organizations act as if the advanced industrial nations live in their own bubble. In reality, the Western democracies are in a contest for economic dominance with China. The Great Reset virtually guarantees that China will prevail, with devastating consequences for the United States. With a negative net foreign investment position of $13 trillion and a current account deficit of $1 trillion per year as of late 2021, the United States depends on the willingness of foreigners to hold U.S. dollar investments. China already is promoting its own currency as a substitute for the dollar, and its success would be devastating for America’s financial system.

The WEF’s executive chairman, Klaus Schwab, issued what might be called the Great Reset manifesto in a June 3, 2020, article:

The Great Reset agenda would have three main components. The first would steer the market toward fairer outcomes. To this end, governments should improve coordination (for example, in tax, regulatory, and fiscal policy), upgrade trade arrangements, and create the conditions for a “stakeholder economy.” At a time of diminishing tax bases and soaring public debt, governments have a powerful incentive to pursue such action.

Moreover, governments should implement long-overdue reforms that promote more equitable outcomes. Depending on the country, these may include changes to wealth taxes, the withdrawal of fossil-fuel subsidies, and new rules governing intellectual property, trade, and competition.

The second component of a Great Reset agenda would ensure that investments advance shared goals, such as equality and sustainability. Here, the large-scale spending programs that many governments are implementing represent a major opportunity for progress…

Rather than using these funds, as well as investments from private entities and pension funds, to fill cracks in the old system, we should use them to create a new one that is more resilient, equitable, and sustainable in the long run. This means, for example, building “green” urban infrastructure and creating incentives for industries to improve their track record on environmental, social, and governance (ESG) metrics.

The third and final priority of a Great Reset agenda is to harness the innovations of the Fourth Industrial Revolution to support the public good, especially by addressing health and social challenges. During the Covid-19 crisis, companies, universities, and others have joined forces to develop diagnostics, therapeutics, and possible vaccines; establish testing centers; create mechanisms for tracing infections; and deliver telemedicine. Imagine what could be possible if similar concerted efforts were made in every sector.

Noteworthy is Schwab’s reduction of the “Fourth Industrial Revolution” to activities that “support the public good” by enhancing surveillance of the population in the interest of public health. There is a legitimate argument for the use of electronic contact tracing in epidemics, and a number of democratic countries including the United Kingdom, Germany, and South Korea require the use of smartphone software for this purpose. But Schwab’s understanding of the “Fourth Industrial Revolution” component ignores the productivity-enhancing role of artificial intelligence (AI) and Big Data applications to industrial robotics, logistics, the internet of things, “smart cities,” and other technologies that promise higher growth rates. His one-sided emphasis on “health and social challenges” implies a vast increase in the power of the state and of the technocratic elite rather than a broadbased gain in economic productivity.

In effect, Schwab proposes to leave the “industrial” part of the Fourth Industrial Revolution to China...

Next week: an excerpt from "The Great Reset, Feminist-Style" by Janice Fiamengo. 

'You'll Own Nothing'—and Like It. Or Will You?

The much-circulated slogan “You will own nothing, and you will be happy” was coined by Danish MP Ida Auken in 2016 and included in a 2016 essay published by the purveyors of the so-called “Great Reset” at the World Economic Forum (WEF) headquartered in Davos, Switzerland. It is, of course, only half true. Nonetheless, the phrase is certainly apt and should be taken seriously. For once the Great Reset has been put in place, we will indeed own nothing except our compelled compliance.

The world’s farmers and cattle raisers, deprived of their livelihoods on the pretext of reducing nitrogenic fertilizers and livestock-produced methane, will own next to nothing. Meat and grain will become increasingly rare and we will be dining on cricket goulash and mealworm mash, an entomorphagic feast. We will be driving distance-limited electric vehicles rented from the local Commissariat and digitally monitored by Cyber Central—assuming we will still be allowed to drive. Overseen by a cadre of empowered financial managers who can “freeze” our assets at any time, we will possess bank accounts and credit ratings, but they will not be really ours. 

Subject to a conceptual misnomer that is nothing but a vacuous abstraction, we will have become “stakeholders”—the WEF’s Klaus Schwab’s favorite word—with no real stake to hold apart from a crutch. In fact, what Schwab’s “stakeholder capitalism” really means, as Andrew Stuttaford explains at Capital Matters, is “transferring the power that capitalism should confer from its owners and into the hands of those who administer it.” 

Beware the Magic Mountain.

Should the Great Reset ever be fully implemented, we will have been diminished, as Joel Kotkin cogently argues in The Coming of Neo-Feudalism, to the condition of medieval serfs, or reduced to the status of febrile invalids, like those in Thomas Mann’s The Magic Mountain, which, as it happens, was also set in Davos. As Mann ends his novel, addressing his main character Hans Castorp: “Farewell, Hans…Your chances are not good. The wicked dance in which you are caught up will last many a little sinful year yet, and we will not wager much that you will come out whole.”

Modern-day Castorps, we will indeed own nothing, and most assuredly, we will not be happy. As Schwab writes in his co-authored Covid-19: The Great Reset, people will have to accept “limited consumption,” “responsible eating,” and, on the whole, sacrificing “what we do not need”—this latter to be determined by our betters.

What strikes me with considerable force is the pervasive indifference or cultivated ignorance of the general population respecting what the Davos cabal has in store for them. A substantial number of people have never heard of it. Others regard it as just another internet conspiracy—though it is not so much a conspiracy since it is being organized in full sight. The majority of “fact-checkers” and hireling intellectuals wave it away as a right-wing delusion.

Others I have spoken to simply cannot grasp the enormity of so vast, diabolical, and methodically orchestrated a scheme. “Surely, you’re joking,” my neighbor said to me. I was tempted to parrot Leslie Nielsen’s snappy one-liner, “Don’t call me Shirley,” as a correlative idiocy. The general state of public stupefaction and complacency is precisely what may ensure the success of what is nothing less than a social apocalypse, epically scalable and coercively networked by an unholy alliance between government, corporations, NGOs, academia, techno-elites and a coterie of the world’s billionaires. It is real. “It matters,” writes Ben Sixsmith at The Spectator World, “that some of the world’s richest and most powerful people are so interested in ‘resetting’ the way we live.”

The evidence is everywhere though the majority refuse to recognize it: one pandemic and variant after another, strictly on schedule: Covid, Omicron BA.4, BA.5, Monkeypox, Bird Flu, with more to come; vaccines whose deadly consequences are legion; the creation of a new category of political prisoners; climate alarmism presaging the end of mankind—an extinction which is continually deferred; the systematic suppression of civil rights and Constitutional guarantees; supply-chain disruptions; currency deflation and its result, rampant inflation; ballooning taxes of every shape and form: gas taxes, equity taxes, capital gains taxes, carbon taxes; and the growing campaign against energy and food, the essentials of life and prosperity, leading to the culling of the world’s population—we have the Malthusian word of Bill Gates on that.

Taken together, this is the Reset idea in a nutshell, a dystopian blueprint whose effect will be devastating, and which most people remain blind to. It is sometimes the glaringly obvious that is most obscure, the onset of a tectonic shift dismissed as a mere tremor, until it is too late to prepare and react. 

Yuval Noah Harari, author of the bestselling Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, represents an interesting case in the ongoing debate over the nature of the Great Reset. Often condemned by skeptics as a vigorous promoter of the movement, he appears to be more of a Cassandra prophetically surveying the evolution of our political, economic and technological future, which, he believes, may well be unstoppable. He suspects that artificial intelligence (AI) and the algorithmic revolution will generate a “global useless class.” Disruptive technologies,” he says in a New York Times interview, “which have helped bring enormous progress, could be disastrous if they get out of hand.” These new technologies “could hijack democracy, and even our sense of self,” which would spell the doom of “liberal democracy as we have known it for the last century.”

Harari is often closely associated with Schwab, but his predictions should be taken in—not out of—context, as an insightful foray into what is looming on the horizon, for better or worse. In referring to “hackable humans,” he is not advocating for but warning against how the new technologies, such as the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's Neural Evidence Aggregation Tool (NEAT) program, are envisioning the future and how, if we are not careful, they can go wrong. Harari’s warning is the content of the Great Reset’s proposed aspirations—but he seems to be misunderstood rather than heeded.

A new book, Against the Great Reset, edited by The Pipeline editor Michael Walsh and scheduled for October, would doubtlessly enlighten the crepuscular sensibilities of an apathetic and irresponsible demographic, the incipient victims of an unprecedented global upheaval. But most of the people I daily meet at their trades, and enter into conversation with, do not read anything apart from the agitprop drivel of the mainstream press. Even so, such a volume, featuring many of our most prestigious scholars, needs to be “out there” as a curator of ideas. One never knows. It may change some minds among the literate and nudge the news cycle, at least to some extent, in the direction of sanity.

The only event, however, that I can see radically forestalling what has begun to seem inevitable would be the total collapse of the economies, traditional pursuits, communal trust in national leadership, and, in effect, the  structural cohesion of nations, as in Sri Lanka, Argentina, and possibly Holland and Canada in the approximate future. Such convulsions may serve to rouse the masses. Otherwise, we may be inviting a fait accompli. Barring the unforeseen, one thing is certain. The oligarchs and poser-brokers who are busy installing the insidious measures and manorial provisions of the Great Reset, should they succeed in their plans, will have much to look forward to. They will own everything, and they will be happy. Very happy.

Against the Great Reset: 'The War on Capitalism'

Continuing today, and for the next 11 weeks, The Pipeline will present excerpts from each of the essays contained in Against the Great Reset: 18 Theses Contra the New World Order, to be published on October 18 by Bombardier Books and distributed by Simon and Schuster, and available now for pre-order at the links. 

 

Part III: THE ECONOMIC

Excerpt from "The War on Capitalism" by Conrad Black

As other contributors have mentioned, if any place could be identified as the birthplace of the Great Reset, it must be the small, drab, German-Swiss Alpine town of Davos, a center of contemporary anticapitalism, or at least radically altered and almost deracinated capitalism, and site of an ever-expanding international conference. (It grew exponentially and has spawned regional versions.)

I attended there for many years by invitation in order to ascertain what my analogues in the media business around the world were doing. The hotels are spartan and the town is very inaccessible. When I first attended nearly forty years ago, the Davos founder, the earnest and amiable Klaus Schwab, had ingeniously roped in a number of contemporary heads of government and captains of industry and leaders in some other fields and had sold huge numbers of admissions to well-to-do courtiers and groupies from all over the world, attracted by the merits of “networking.”

Davos, and its regional outgrowths across the world gradually came to express a collective opinion of the virtues of universal supranationalism (the Davos variety of globalism): social democracy; environmental alarmism; the desirability of having a nonpolitical international bureaucracy; a public sector-reflected image of the Davos hierarchy itself (and in fact, in many cases, preferably the very same individuals); and gently enforcing a soft Orwellian conformity on everybody. It must be said that many of the sessions were interesting, and it was a unique experience being amid so many people capable in their fields, and this certainly includes almost all of those who were revenue-producing, “networking” spectators and not really participants.

Davos is for democracy, as long as everyone votes for increased public sector authority in pursuit of green egalitarianism and the homogenization of all peoples in a conformist world. It was the unfolding default page of the European view: capitalism was to be overborne by economic redistribution; all concepts of public policy were to be divorced from any sense of nationality, history, spirituality, or spontaneity and redirected to defined goals of imposed uniformity under the escutcheon of ecological survival and the reduction of abrasive distinctions between groups of people—such obsolescent concepts as nationality or sectarianism. (My hotel concierge stared at me as if I had two heads when I inquired where the nearest Roman Catholic Church was and was even more astonished when I trod two miles through the snow there and back to receive its moral succour; the parishioners appeared a sturdy group.)

The Covid-19 pandemic caused Davos Man to break out of his Alpine closet and reveal the secret but suspected plan: the whole world is to become a giant Davos—humorless, style-less, unspontaneous, unrelievedly materialistic, as long as the accumulation and application of capital is directed by the little Alpine gnomes of Davos and their underlings and disciples. This is a slight overstatement, and Klaus Schwab would earnestly dispute that the purpose of Davos is so comprehensive, anesthetizing, and uniform. His dissent would be sincere, but unjustified: the Great Reset, a Davos expression, is massively ambitious and is largely based on the seizure and hijacking of recognizable capitalism, in fact and in theory.

Against the Great Reset

On sale Oct. 18: pre-order now at the links above.

There has indeed in the last thirty years been a war on capitalism conducted from the commanding heights of the academy and very broadly assisted by the Western media that has been gathering strength as part of the great comeback of the Left following their bone-crushing defeat in the Cold War. As international communism collapsed and the Soviet Union disintegrated, it was difficult to imagine that the Left could mount any sort of comeback anytime soon. We underestimated both the Left’s imperishability and its gift for improvisation, a talent that their many decades of predictable and robotic repetitiveness entirely concealed.

By some combination of intuition and tactical cunning, the hard Left crowded aboard the environmental bandwagon. Until the nineties, the environment was the concern of authentic if sometimes tedious conservationists such as the Sierra Club and Greenpeace, and despite their harassment of nuclear testing by the French around Tahiti and their demonstrations against goodwill visits of American aircraft carriers, they were sincere people making an arguable case.

Suddenly they were overwhelmed by the hard Left imposing a new agenda of strangulation of capitalism by coming through the rear windows and attacking practically every industry as a threat to human survival for ecological reasons. We can only salute their ingenuity and persistence as they co-opted susceptible members of the scientific community to produce asinine arguments like Dr. Michael E. Mann’s infamous conjuration of the “hockey stick,” which held that global warming proceeded horizontally for a long time and then suddenly shot upwards at a forty-five-degree angle as a hockey stick does when the stem reaches the blade. This and spurious calculations based on reading the rings on the trunks of trees and other superstitious opinations won the approval of a huge gallery of gullible, faddish, and cynical people. They made an unlikely coalition: Al Gore became a centimillionaire on this issue; the Prince of Wales mounted a great hobby horse that he still rides, and the most vocal airheads of Hollywood have ben howling like banshees on the issue for decades.

Aggressive green parties arose in many countries and harvested the naiveté and narcissistic ambition for attention of large numbers of people championing antipollution causes that in the abstract no reasonable person could oppose. They were allied or infested with the old left and skulked forward, ideological wolves in paradisiacal lambs’ clothing. Germany has no petroleum resources but had built an extensive and absolutely safe nuclear power capacity, but the aggressive German Green Party came snorting out of the Teutonic forests like a Wagnerian monster and bullied Angela Merkel’s government into abandoning the entire nuclear program. Germany in effect became an energy vassal state of Russia through the Nord Stream pipeline, the completion of which the Biden administration facilitated in withdrawing the Trump administration’s intervention to prevent the pipeline’s completion. With the Ukraine war, it is again suspended. Thus the second most important country in the Western Alliance is almost detached from it, all by the apparently innocuous and meliorist actions of Germany’s peppiest environmentalists, and with the ultimate complicity of the current U.S. president.

Even the outgoing prime minister, Boris Johnson, an authentic if idiosyncratic Tory, has bought into the global warming danger, though to those who know him, it is hard to imagine that he believes a word of it. The objective evidence is that to the extent that it can be measured at all, the overall temperature of the world has risen by one degree centigrade in the last hundred years and will rise by another centigrade degree this century. This is not in itself harmful, and it is not outside normal historic climate cycles. There has been no rise in the in the world’s temperature in this century, and the whole task of gauging the world’s temperature including thermometers at various depths of the oceans and all over the surface of the earth is quite imprecise.

In the future, historians will look with astonishment on the speed and zeal with which the post-Cold War world burdened itself with bone-cracking expenses and severe social costs radically altering its economy to avoid a rise in the world’s temperature that we have no reason to believe will occur on anything like the scale the alarmists have been wailing about. And if it does occur in any measure, we still have no scientifically serious evidence that it is anthropogenically caused. It will be seen as something like the alleged seventeenth-century Dutch tulip hysteria, which had people paying the equivalent of $25,000 for a single potted bulb.

Rarely in the Cold War did capitalism’s Marxist enemies do anything that earned the respect one gives a gallant or brilliant adversary. In these initiatives, our enemies leapt from the jaws of bitter and total defeat, hijacked the careening gadfly of esoteric conservationism, and transformed it surreptitiously into a well-camouflaged battering ram that has inflicted immense costs and opprobrium on the corporate world and great sadness and inconvenience on the laboring proletariat on whose behalf the Marxist Left has supposedly been crusading these past 150 years.

A companion unpleasant surprise to the ingenuity and resilience of the international Far Left in its environmental assault upon capitalism has been the venality, cowardice, and invertebrate tactical stupidity of much of the corporate world. We find oil companies putting up slick television advertising praising and purporting to be part of the heroic march to a fossil fuel-free world. As corporations fell over themselves agreeing that the U.S. state of Georgia’s eminently sensible voting reform statute, passed in the wake of the disputed presidential election of 2020, was a reversion to Jim Crow if not slavery itself and demanded that Georgia be punished by moving the Major League Baseball All-Star Game from Atlanta to Denver (where restrictions to ensure verifiable voting are more severe than in Georgia), the leadership of corporate America was largely revealed, once again, at least in public policy terms, as contemptibly enfeebled and morally bankrupt...

Next week: an excerpt from "Socialism and the Great Reset" by Michael Anton.

Against the Great Reset: 'Big Tech: Sacred Culture or Cyborg Rapture?'

Continuing today, and for the next 12 weeks, The Pipeline will present excerpts from each of the essays contained in Against the Great Reset: 18 Theses Contra the New World Order, to be published on October 18 by Bombardier Books and distributed by Simon and Schuster, and available now for pre-order at the links. 

 

Part II: THE POLITICAL

Excerpt from "Big Tech: Sacred Culture or Cyborg Rapture?" by James Poulos

The history of the Great Reset is a technological one. It is the history of the unfolding development of communication media to supplement, perchance to supplant, the republican form of government, wherein citizens meet face to face in their shared humanity and under God, to govern themselves at human scale.

The quest to replace this ancient arrangement with a new world government is itself nothing new. In 1928, the year of the world’s first color television transmission and the first appearance of Mickey Mouse, H. G. Wells published The Open Conspiracy: Blue Prints for a World Revolution, not a science fiction novel but a manifesto for the establishment of a “world commonwealth” with a “world religion” rooted not in any established Western or Eastern faith but in the “unending growth of knowledge and power.” From out of this infinity of collectivized, centralized effort, Wells predicted “universal peace, welfare and happy activity.” These, he avowed, could be the fruits only of a “responsible world directorate,” a construct built to replace “private, local, or national ownership” of everything from credit to transportation to industrial production, and empowered to impose “world biological controls” on “population and disease.” No true future awaited the West, Wells counseled, but one in which the imperatives of technology and ethics fused into one “supreme duty”—“subordinating the personal life to the creation” of the world directorate and its “general advancement of human knowledge, capacity, and power.”

Just how human such an arrangement could truthfully be said to be, however, has remained since then in doubt; in Literature and Revolution, published four years before The Open Conspiracy, Leon Trotsky announced that only the communist man was “the man of the future,” a being for whom his only possible future was to break down his humanity and build of its parts something new. “Man will make it his purpose to master his own feelings, to raise his instincts to the heights of consciousness, to make them transparent, to extend the wires of his will into hidden recesses, and thereby to raise himself to a new plane, to create a higher social biologic type, or, if you please, a superman.”

Since the first stirrings of planetary war between British globalism and Soviet communism for control over the founding of a new world theological order, the West has twisted in the grip of technoethical elites convinced that, since the beginning and in the end, the highest imperative on Earth—with ruin the only alternative—has been and will be to found a regime as pure as the consciousness that could only be freed to create it by coercively breaking the sacredness and authority of our given humanity.

This momentous wager emerged above all from the formative effect of electric technology on the senses and sensibilities of the West. If the medium of print ushered in an Age of Reason, the medium of electricity unleashed an Age of Occultism. Print’s promise was not a Babel-like reconstruction of our identity based on knowledge that empowered us to progress beyond our humanity but a congenially, horizontally distributed system of open exchange that took a variety of directions as it went along, even as ultimate knowledge accumulated in elite networks of libraries, universities, and scholars. The age of print was the age of not simply reason but reasonableness, a technological and ethical heuristic that harmonized at large but pluralistic scale the individual and the congregation, the conscience and the commonwealth, the nation and the marketplace.

Shattering this schema, the advent of electricity substituted instantaneousness and invisibility in an ethereal new realm of communications for the methodical, tactile, and grounded (or seaborne) realm adhered to by the communicative life of print. Edward Bulwer-Lytton’s 1871 vision of “a coming race” possessed of electricity and “the art to concentre [sic] and direct it in a word, to be conductors of its lightnings” seemed to unveil a deeper meaning of Melville’s 1850 claim, issued at the dawn of the electric age, that “genius, all over the world, stands hand in hand, and one shock of recognition runs the whole circle round.” David Bowie would reference Bulwer-Lytton’s vision a century afterward, at the peak of the electric age, in hit single “Oh! You Pretty Things,” in which he sings about the obsolescence of humanity—a conclusion fueled by the annihilating electric force Europe suffered in the twentieth century, from which the U.S. was almost mystically spared.

Against the Great Reset

On sale Oct. 18: pre-order now at the links above.

America’s moment of technological scourging came fast and early, in the Civil War. Lincoln, providentially, had grasped that America somehow had to be set on a new footing capable of seeing the country and its people through the electric age. He, for the first time, communicated remotely and directly with his generals in the field through the telegraph in the War Department; his Emancipation Proclamation went out over telegraph, striking abolitionists nationwide like the loosed lightning from Christ’s terrible swift sword in the “Battle Hymn of the Republic.” America’s manifest destiny played out under and through the arc of electric power. So, it seemed, would the next century’s Pax Americana.

Convinced by its means of victory in World War II, secured in its sense that electric power had only strengthened America’s human way, the U.S. regime adopted limitless technological advancement as its strategy for world domination. Unable to defeat the Soviets by conventional or nuclear war, the scientific state embedded within the U.S. regime since the Manhattan Project had to develop technological weaponry of a new kind. Scruples and prudence had to be set aside: those in charge grew convinced America’s form of government and way of life could not continue to exist unless America, in effect, ruled the world; given the impossibility of all previous forms of large-scale conquest under Cold War conditions, the U.S. required from its scientific state an altogether new form of war making and control. This the military-industrial complex delivered in the form of computer technology.

At first, the Soviets advanced step for step with the Americans in the computer race, even using the devices (Moscow’s mainframe computer calculated Sputnik’s requisite trajectory) to beat the U.S. into space. But as the internet developed—and, with it, the military computer technologies such as GPS and the touchscreen that would soon be spun off as consumer electronics applications—America made a fundamental break with all prior research and development. The creation of a communications network of machines and programs, limitlessly scalable in theory, ushered in a digital medium distinct from, and more powerful than, any one computer or room full of computers. The functionally limitless spending directed to America’s scientific state within a state could not be matched by the Soviet political economy. While digital technology did not quite defeat Moscow, when the Soviets fell, it was digital technology that was victorious—first over America, and then, with blistering speed, the rest of the world.

Naturally those in charge in the triumphant West were certain that the historic and unprecedented devices they funded and created could be used just as well to establish world dominance and control amid the collapse of international communism as they might have been used to wage a kind of war against it—a digital war, which could, unlike conventional or nuclear war, actually be waged and won. Not only was digital technology useful in this way from a scientific standpoint, but also from an ethical standpoint, it appeared to be a kinder, gentler, and therefore more just form of world control.

Progressively onboarding the world into a networked system of constant communication—backboned by American strategic infrastructure and premised on American norms and values—would establish a new global order in a new way, one harmonious with peaceful economic activity and international law. Through this new and enlightened form of domination, individuals anywhere in the world could use benevolent technology to increasingly approximate the earthly paradise imagined—as in John Lennon’s “Imagine”—by the cultural utopians of the post-Christian West. Divisive feelings and identities would melt away as connectivity increased togetherness and transcended parochial fears and cares. New Age ethics seemed inseparable from the technology of the new digital age...

Next week: an excerpt from "The War on Capitalism" by Conrad Black.

Against the Great Reset: 'Resetting the Educational Reset'

Continuing today, and for the next 13 weeks, The Pipeline will present excerpts from each of the essays contained in Against the Great Reset: 18 Theses Contra the New World Order, to be published on October 18 by Bombardier Books and distributed by Simon and Schuster, and available now for pre-order at the links. 

 

Part II: THE POLITICAL

Excerpt from "Resetting the Educational Reset," by Angelo M. Codevilla

In 2020, the self-proclaimed “key global governmental and business leaders” who meet yearly in Davos, Switzerland, issued a statement that “the Covid-19 crisis” showed the “inconsistencies, inadequacies and contradictions of multiple systems—from health and financial to energy and education.” From this, there ensued “global context of concern for lives, livelihoods and the planet.” The statement promises to answer this through a “Great Reset Initiative.” By that initiative the authors intend to change “the direction of national economies, the priorities of societies, the nature of business models and the management of a global commons.” This is to result, no less, in “a new social contract that honours the dignity of every human being.”

By, of, for Whom? And for What?

The “initiative” does not say what the “inconsistencies, inadequacies and contradictions” under which Western health economics, and education have been laboring, how or what the Covid-19 episode taught us about them, whose is the “global context of concern,” what that concern and that context might be, how alleged problems ought to be remedied, or what these words might mean. It does not argue for specific measures because it is not about convincing. Instead, it is an attempt to induce, cajole, perhaps force nonstakeholders (i.e., ordinary people), into letting their lives be reordered according to the stakeholders’ judgment. That judgment’s basis is these very stakeholders’ claim that the Covid affair showed Western civilization’s failings, and that they know better ways to improve efficiency and enhance dignity. Their authority lies solely in their claim to authority.

They claim to act on behalf of “a global multi-stakeholder network,” meaning such as Bill Gates and George Soros, Jamie Dimon, and other corporate and governmental figures. But mostly the initiative is by, of, and for whomever hungers for a touch of all that coolness, power, and money. Least of all does the initiative argue why these prominent persons should have any right to change the way we live, or why anyone should follow them. Its boldness and lack of foundation may be exceeded only by the authors’ chutzpah.

Chutzpah, because the initiative’s authors—the lords of Davos—are themselves chiefly responsible for turning a virus with an overall infection/fatality rate well within the range of ordinary flus, into a catastrophe for billions of people. Covid-19’s dire effects came almost exclusively because the government, business and educational leaders, stakeholders, and others of the sort who meet at Davos propagated and weaponized a patent untruth—that the virus is some sort of plague—while knowing and hiding the truth. To promote their own self-interest in power, they lied, causing havoc, pain, and death. Their guilt is very great indeed.

The initiative’s claim to represent something new tops off its fraud. In fact, its august personages have been increasing their near-total control of public life in the West over the past half century. In every field of endeavor, they have set the tone and the reigning priorities. Hence the Great Reset, far from a proposal for new ways of living, is an attempt to tighten Davos Man’s grip on our lives and to foreclose alternatives to the way of life that they have been in the process of imposing on us, and that the rest of us are now stubbornly rejecting.

Education tops the list of the aspects of public life with which Americans are dissatisfied. The Covid affair contributed to the dissatisfaction by forcing millions to become acquainted with what happens in K–12 classrooms. College students’ exclusion from campuses also has led Americans to question as never before how important their sons and daughters actually being there really is.

The closer one looks at education today, the more one sees that the dumbing down and perversion of America to which people object most strongly is the continuation of a century-old decay in our civilization. Problems with education bespeak civilizational ones, of which the phenomenon of Davos Man is but one manifestation.

Education Feeds Civilization

Any civilization is the totality of the language, habits and ideas in which people live and move—the human reality that defines their practical limits. To see how grossly unequal to one another civilizations are, it is enough to glance at how much or little understanding of reality the languages they speak contain—what any given language enables, or not. We are accustomed to Greek, Latin, English, French, Italian, German, and other languages with their massive dictionaries full of definitions, pronouns, tenses, moods, and concepts, all tied together by grammar that flows from logic. When we speak these languages correctly, we hardly realize that we are wielding powerful tools of reason, developed over thousands of years.

Against the Great Reset

On sale Oct. 18: pre-order now at the links above.

Without going to any depth in the debate between the human possibilities that nature and nurture provide, enough experiments have been carried out that show that nature does not limit babies born into primitive tribes to lives near the level of quadrupeds, just as it does not endow the offspring of PhD’s with high IQs. Quantification is unnecessary for us to know that much of civilization depends on the habits of body, heart, and mind into which we are civilized.

We may never have heard of Plato’s prescription that the body and mind are best trained for reason by physical discipline, that the right kind of music enhances these and the wrong kind hinders it. We may no longer play musical instruments as much as earlier generations. And yet all who are part of Western civilization carry with us, among
other things, a musical heritage based on mathematics and melody that also sets us apart from other civilizations.

Aristotle tells us Westerners that our capacity to speak is for the purpose of persuading each other about right and wrong, better and worse. To do that, and so that we might not confuse one another, the words we speak and think must have well-defined relationships with reality. That is why common, matter-of-course acceptance of these meanings—embodied in dictionaries—is so essential. When asked questions about what is around us, we in our civilization answer ordinarily with yes or no, though we probably never heard that Jesus Christ told us that this is how we should. But Westerners are peculiar. When we hear Japanese and others answer plain questions not with yes or no but with the equivalent of “I hear you” and “as you please,” it does not take us long to conclude that they are less interested in objective reality than they are in relative power.

And why should anyone pay less attention to relative power, to getting along with those more powerful than ourselves, than about what is true and false? We do because we believe that God created the heavens and the Earth intelligibly, and created each of us equal to one another. This is our civilization’s chief peculiarity. But, like every other civilization, all its parts are subject to the ever-rolling stream of biological deaths and births. For renewal, each civilization depends on
educating each successive generation.

How Education Changes Us

What, then has education been doing to our civilization? The very concept of IQ, the Stanford-Binet test, and things similar, is, as its critics argue, a cultural construct—less a measure of potential than of capacities already developed. It’s no surprise that persons growing up in environments which stimulate and enable the development of human possibilities do in fact develop more of these. Some studies suggest that what each generation conveyed to the next made those generations more intellectually/morally potent than their predecessors through the early twentieth century but that this process has reversed itself over about a half century and average IQ has dropped by some fourteen points. The decline seems to have come at the top of our civilizational pyramid. Speculation about the causes is less relevant than noting the effects.

But the deepest philosophical causes are not in dispute. After Descartes’s Discourse on Method reduced reality into something wholly comprehensible by truncating it, the very peaks of Western philosophy reversed the relationship between reality and the observer. Kant and Hegel’s “idealism” is neither more nor less than the further affirmation that the mind, for its own sovereign convenience, can take possession of what it perceives. From these philosophical peaks, any number of streams of far less sophisticated thought have flowed, which effectively and explicitly place the mind’s product under the sway of man’s will, and hence of man’s various interests.

The intellectual mechanism is straightforward: presume to abolish the objective status of what you see and presume to retake possession of what you then supposed to be reality based on what matters to you...

Next week: an excerpt from "Big Tech: Sacred Culture or Cyborg Rapture?" by James Poulos.

Against the Great Reset: 'Sovereignty and the Nation-State'

Continuing today, and for the next 14 weeks, The Pipeline will present excerpts from each of the essays contained in Against the Great Reset: 18 Theses Contra the New World Order, to be published on October 18 by Bombardier Books and distributed by Simon and Schuster, and available now for pre-order at the links. 

 

PART II: THE POLITICAL

Excerpt from "Sovereignty and the Nation-State," by Roger Kimball

I think I know man, but as for men, I know them not.
—Jean-Jacques Rousseau

In a memorable passage at the beginning of The Critique of Pure Reason, Immanuel Kant evokes a soaring dove that, “cleaving the air in her free flight,” feels the resistance of the wind and imagines that its flight “would be easier still in empty space.” A fond thought, of course, since absent that aeolian pressure, the dove would simply plummet to the ground.

How regularly the friction of reality works that way: making possible our endeavors even as it circumscribes and limits their extent. And how often, like Kant’s dove, we are tempted to imagine that our freedoms would be grander and more extravagant absent the countervailing forces that make them possible.

Such fantasies are as perennial as they are vain. They insinuate themselves everywhere in the economy of human desire, not least in our political arrangements. Noticing the imperfection of our societies, we may be tempted into thinking that the problem is with the limiting structures we have inherited. If only we could dispense with them, we might imagine, beating our wings, how much better things might be.

What a cunning, devilish word: “might.” For here as elsewhere, possibility is cheap. Scrap our current political accommodations and things might be better. Then again, they might be a whole lot worse. Vide the host of tyrannies inspired by that disciple of airy possibility, Jean-Jacques Rousseau. “Man was born free,” he declaimed, “but is everywhere in chains”: two startling untruths in a single famous utterance. Rousseau was keen on “forcing men to be free,” but we had to wait until his followers Robespierre and Saint-Just to discover that freedom in this sense is often indistinguishable from what Robespierre chillingly called “virtue and its emanation, terror.” Something similar can be said about Karl Marx, that other acolyte of possibility. How much misery have his theories underwritten, promising paradise but delivering tyranny, oppression, poverty, and death?

It wasn’t so long ago that I had hopes that the Marxist-socialist rot—outside the insulated purlieus of humanities departments at Western universities, anyway—was on the fast track to oblivion. Has any “philosophy” ever been so graphically refuted by events (or the number of corpses it created)?

Maybe not, but refutation, like reason, plays a much more modest role in human affairs than we might imagine. In fact, the socialist-inspired utopian chorus is alive and well, playing to full houses at an antidemocratic redoubt near you. Consider the apparently unkillable dream of “world government.” It is as fatuous now as it was when H. G. Wells infused it with literary drama toward the beginning of the twentieth century.

All human children need to learn to walk by themselves; so, it seems, every generation needs to wean itself from the blandishments of various utopian schemes. In 2005, the political philosopher Jeremy Rabkin published a fine book called Law Without Nations? Why Constitutional Government Requires Sovereign States. Rabkin ably fleshes out the promise of his subtitle, but it would be folly to think this labor will not have to be repeated. The temptation to exchange hard-won democratic freedom for the swaddling comfort of one or another central planning body is as inextinguishable as it is dangerous. As Ronald Reagan memorably put it,

Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.

The late English philosopher Roger Scruton made the connection between this insight and the bulwark provided by the nation-state. “Democracies,” he wrote, “owe their existence to national loyalties—the loyalties that are supposedly shared by government and opposition.” Confusing national loyalty with nationalism, many utopians argue that the former is a threat to peace. After all, wasn’t it national loyalty that sparked two world wars? No, it was that perverted offspring, nationalism, which at great cost was defeated only by the successful mobilization of national loyalty. Scruton quotes G. K. Chesterton on this point: to condemn patriotism because people go to war for patriotic reasons is like condemning love because some loves lead to murder.

It is one of the great mysteries—or perhaps I should say it is one of the reliable reminders of human imperfection—that higher education often fosters a particular form of political stupidity. Scruton anatomizes that stupidity, noting “the educated derision that has been directed at our national loyalty by those whose freedom to criticize would have been extinguished years ago, had the English not been prepared to die for their country.” This peculiar mental deformation, Scruton observes, involves “the repudiation of inheritance and home.” It is a stage, he writes,

through which the adolescent mind normally passes. But it is a stage in which intellectuals tend to become arrested. As George Orwell pointed out, intellectuals on the Left are especially prone to it, and this has often made them willing agents of foreign powers. The Cambridge spies [Guy Burgess, Kim Philby, and others] offer a telling illustration of what [this tendency] has meant for our country.

It is also telling that this déformation professionelle of intellectuals encourages them to repudiate patriotism as an atavistic passion and favor transnational institutions over national governments, rule by committee or the courts over democratic rule. Rabkin reminds us of the naïveté—what others have called the “idealism”—that this preference requires. In order to believe that international bodies will protect human rights, for example, you would have to believe

that governments readily cooperate with other governments on common projects, even when such cooperation promises no direct exchange of benefits to each side. In the end, you must believe that human beings cooperate easily and naturally without much constraint—without much actual enforcement, hence without much need for force.

To believe this you must believe that almost all human beings are well-meaning, even to strangers. And you must believe that human beings have no very serious disagreements on fundamental matters.

The persistence of such beliefs is no guide to their cogency or truth. What another Jeremy, Jeremy Bentham, long ago called “nonsense on stilts” presents a spectacle that is perhaps unsteady but nonetheless mesmerizing. And when it comes to the erosion of the nation-state and its gradual replacement by unaccountable, transnational entities such as the E.U., the U.N., or the so-called “World Court,” the results are ominous.

The political tendency of such institutions was brilliantly captured by John Fonte’s coinage “transnational progressivism.” As Fonte explains in his book Sovereignty or Submission: Will Americans Rule Themselves or Be Ruled by Others? (2011), “transnational progressivism” describes the antinationalist impulse that seeks to transfer political power and decision-making “from democratic nations to supranational authorities and institutions” such as the European Union, the United Nations, the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and kindred organizations (“judges from the European Court of Human Rights and the International Criminal Court; career officials in the U.S. State Department, the British Foreign Office, and the German Foreign Ministry; American CEOs of major global corporations; NGOs such as Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and Greenpeace”; and so on and so forth).

On sale Oct. 18: pre-order now at the links above.

A sterling contemporary example is the Great Reset recently proposed by the Davos-based WEF, which seeks “to revamp all aspects of our societies and economies, from education to social contracts and working conditions.” Exploiting the panic caused by the Covid-19 crisis, the WEF demands that “every country, from the United States to China, must participate, and every industry, from oil and gas to tech, must be transformed” in its socialist scheme to bring about a “Great Reset of capitalism.”

The true political ends of such elite enterprises are generally swaddled in emollient rhetoric about freedom and democracy. Thus the PR surrounding the WEF’s Great Reset is festooned with talk of “stakeholder capitalism,” “equality,” “sustainability,” and other items in the lexicon of socialistically oriented political obfuscation.

The real agenda, however, is revealed in its call for “changes,” i.e., increases in taxes on wealth, a turn away from reliance on fossil fuels, and “building ‘green’ urban infrastructure and creating incentives for industries to improve their track record on environmental, social, and governance (ESG) metrics.” Stepping back, John Fonte uncovered some revelatory gems that speak candidly about what’s really at stake. For example, Robert Kagan of the Brookings Institution put it with all possible clarity when he declared in 2008 that the “United States…should not oppose, but welcome a world of pooled and diminished national sovereignty” (my emphasis). “Pooled and diminished national sovereignty.” At least we know where we stand.

The question of sovereignty—of who governs—is at the center of all contemporary populist initiatives. It has been posed with increasing urgency as the bureaucratic burden of what has been called the “deep state” or administrative state has weighed more and more forcefully upon the political and social life of Western democracies.

The phenomenon is often identified with the election of Donald Trump in November 2016 and his candidacy in 2020. But the political, moral, and social realities for which Trump was a symbol and a conduit both predated his candidacy and achieved independent reality in countries as disparate as the United Kingdom, Hungary, Italy, and Brazil.

The question of sovereignty was perhaps most dramatically posed in the United Kingdom. In June 2016, more Brits voted to leave the European Union and return sovereignty to Parliament than had ever voted for any initiative in the long history of Great Britain. Some seventeen million people voted to leave the European Union and regain local responsibility for their own lives. That’s more people than had ever voted for anything in Britain. It took more than three years for that promissory note to be cashed. The U.K. formally began its split from the E.U. at 11 p.m. GMT on 31 January 2020. Like the Battle of Waterloo according to the Duke of Wellington, it was a “near run thing.” Prime Minister Boris Johnson promised that he would, deal or no deal, get Brexit done by the end of October 2019. He was stymied for months, as much by the established elites of his own party as by Labour.

The process of emancipation had not proceeded far before it was interrupted by the advent of a new Chinese import, the novel coronavirus which swept all other news from the front page for months (until, that is, it was half-superseded by the extortionist Kabuki theater of “Black Lives Matter”). As I write in the summer of 2021, Europe and the United States both are poised to return to a state of state-enforced semihibernation or “lockdown,” an insidious flu-like respiratory virus created in a Chinese virology lab having paralyzed their populations with fear and transported their governments with the tantalizing prospect of greater control over every aspect of life.

I am not sure I have ever heard Joe Biden utter the word “sovereignty.” But Donald Trump spoke about it often. In his first speech to the United Nations’ General Assembly in September 2017, he said to a startled roomful of diplomats that “we are renewing this founding principle of sovereignty.”

Our government’s first duty is to its people, to our citizens—to serve their needs, to ensure their safety, to preserve their rights, and to defend their values. As President of the United States, I will always put America first, just like you, as the leaders of your countries will always, and should always, put your countries first.

All responsible leaders have an obligation to serve their own citizens, and the nation-state remains the best vehicle for elevating the human condition.

Perhaps the most disturbing aspect of that speech was the shocked horror that it provoked among the entrenched globalist establishment for whom the whole idea of nation-states and patriotic allegiance to one’s country seems like a barbaric affront to common decency. Imagine, a president of the United States declaring his intention to foster the well-being and prosperity of his own citizens!

Next week: an excerpt from "Resetting the Educational Reset" by Angelo M. Codevilla.