Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The American image of Australian men

Last week I reported on moves here in Victoria to discriminate against white males:

DISCRIMINATION against dominant white males will soon be encouraged in a bid to boost the status of women, the disabled and cultural and religious minorities.

... Equal Opportunity Commission CEO Dr Helen Szoke said males had "been the big success story in business and goods and services".

"Clearly, they will have their position changed ..."


Herald Sun columnist Susie O'Brien made clear her hostility to white men in reporting the news:

THE powerful white man is set to join the powerful white rhino as the world's latest endangered species.

Let's say goodbye to what some have dubbed the "VOMITS" - the Very Old Men In Ties who are running this country.


The bluntness of the attack on white men was noticed at the American website View from the Right. A reader of the site, John Hagan, started a discussion there by noting that,

This is unlike any thing I have ever seen from a Western government, and the only recourse for whites in the state of Victoria should be one of active resistance.


Lawrence Auster, who runs the site, agreed that the language used by our authorities was novel and disturbing:

I can't recall ever hearing an official of a Western government use quite such ruthless, totalitarian-style language about whites


But will men here in Victoria actively resist the new laws? An Australian reader of View from the Right argued that Americans often hold an overly optimistic view of Australian men as being more traditionally masculine and more likely to fight back when attacked. Lawrence Auster agreed that this impression of Australian men did exist:

That's an insightful comment about the way Americans view Australians. I know it's true of my view of Australians. I'm sorry to hear I was wrong.

Australians have this vigorous, upbeat, confident quality which creates the impression that Alan is referring to. But, as with all good things under the conditions of modern liberalism, these virtues end up being subsumed under liberalism. Thus the fear of being called racist/sexist trumps being a manly, irreverent Crocodile Dundee type. People seem to be strong, but they're really weak.


My own impression is that Australian working-class men have resisted liberalism better than most. They have held to a traditional identity for much longer than other social classes; they broke with the Labor Party when Paul Keating began to openly promote a trendier, radical form of liberalism; and at times they have shown some fighting spirit of their own.

And middle-class men? The problem here, I think, is that the image Australian middle-class men have of their role in life is too confined. To be a good and successful man means succeeding in your career, having a family, having a nice house and perhaps contributing to a charity for poor people overseas.

Australian middle-class men have done reasonably well up to recent times in pursuing the role set for them - hence the anger of the equal opportunity apparatchiks that there are still numbers of white men succeeding in their careers.

But what is missing is any sense that these men have a larger, civilisational role in society. There is no expectation that middle-class men will act to uphold the best aspects of the tradition they were born into; or that they will act in the public sphere to defend institutions like the family; or that they will identify more widely with a national tradition of their own.

And so they don't.

Their failure to do so is going to make it much harder for them to succeed at even the limited role society has set for them. The apparatchiks are now setting up a more aggressive and intrusive set of restrictions on white male employment - and a reduced access to jobs will make family formation that much more difficult.

Feminism, too, has disrupted family formation, with marriage being increasingly delayed or opted out of.

We traditionalists have two tasks ahead of us. The one we are most involved with now is challenging the liberal political ideas that are currently dominant. What we also need to do is to promote a different ideal of what a good and successful man is. This is what the radical left did in breaking down the older Western civilisation: they openly promoted their idea of the New Man (and the New Woman).

We obviously don't need to reject the particular aims of career success, family and a nice house - we can continue to point out the unnecessary obstacles being put in the way of achieving these goals.

These aims, though, don't define masculine strength or a complete and admirable life for a man. It is the man who is strong enough to go further and contribute to the defence of his own civilisation and tradition who deserves our respect.

6 comments:

  1. What Mr. Richardson said is so important I just want to repeat it:

    "[T]he image Australian middle-class men have of their role in life is too confined. To be a good and successful man means succeeding in your career, having a family, having a nice house and perhaps contributing to a charity for poor people overseas....

    "But what is missing is any sense that these men have a larger, civilisational role in society. There is no expectation that middle-class men will act to uphold the best aspects of the tradition they were born into; or that they will act in the public sphere to defend institutions like the family; or that they will identify more widely with [their] national tradition..."

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  2. The idea is that being a middle-class man in liberal society means taking care of your personal business, your personal responsibiliiees, taking care of your family. But it doesn't mean protecting the institution of the family itself. It doesn't mean being a leader and defender of society. And that's why Western men are small and shrunken and lack force.

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  3. if you discriminate against white men and attempt to block their success aren't you also discriminating against their wives and children?

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  4. Lawrence Auster has restated the problem with clarity and force in his second comment. It's much appreciated.

    Anonymous, definitely. Perhaps this helps to explain why many women become more conservative after they marry - they begin to recognise that they have a common interest with their husbands.

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  5. Mark, you are, of course, correct. Western men no longer see themselves as the upholders or defenders of a particular ethnic, cultural or civilisational tradition, simply because they no longer identify with any particular traditions.

    Hence the reason why traditional Western society is failing - it's historical guardians have turned their backs on their heritage, their people and their civilisation. We're all just atomised individuals now, after all.

    One thing that has struck me during my dealings with other peoples and cultures is the tribalism practised by nearly every non-Western culture.

    We individualistic, post-ethnic Westerners, especially those of us descended from the remarkably non-ethnocentric English (makes you wonder how they ever survived at all as an ethnic group), tend to look down as such tribalism. Yet our rejection of such ethnic and cultural attachments is depriving Western men of their traditional roles as the patriarchs of a particular "tribe", and depriving Westerners, in general, of a continued existence as a distinct people.

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  6. CS, an impressive comment, thanks. One pleasing development I've observed over the past couple of years is an increase in the number of intelligent and capable people making a contribution. This won't have the effect of changing the mainstream culture, but it will help the process of gathering together those who still identify with their own tradition.

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