The Erosion of Tradition
by The Editor
Our new contributor, Mr Bernard Cannon traces the roots of our civilisation's decline in the face of relentless left-wing social and cultural forces. The Traditional Britain Group stands in favour of the permanent things against continued national anomie.
By Bernard Cannon
It becomes immediately obvious to any observer with historical knowledge of Britain, or indeed anyone who simply watches footage of everyday life from many decades ago, that an immense degradation of our country has taken place. Our culture, weakened and split. Our people, divorced from their nation. Our society, beholden to those of the lowest virtue. One need only to watch the feeble-minded, self-serving politicians and connect this to the fact that they are still there. A people filled with confidence, vitality and determination would not have abided by such an extreme humiliation. For it is severely humiliating to be governed by the worst.
It is surreal to notice that although many rural areas still have the same picturesque views and rolling hills (at least those areas that haven’t been taken over by monstrous housing developments to provide accommodation for the thousands of new arrivals) that the people who inhabit them are of a vastly different constitution to those who resided there a mere 50 years ago, let alone in the heyday of the Empire, or even further back in time. Thus we can reveal not a pattern of linear progress from backwardness into modernity, as is constantly drummed into our minds by academia, but one of regress from tradition into backwardness. However, it is important to know what constitutes this, how it has advanced, when it began, who is deemed to be behind it and why they are acting as they are.
Firstly, there is a thinly veiled dislike of traditionalism in any form. It is treated as an enabler of irrationality, an oppressor of the individual and a limiter of societal harmony. Nothing good comes of it apparently. Now, readers here will be aware that a tradition only becomes defined as such because it has been in widespread use for a lengthy period of time, and for that to be the case, it must have worked and been spread across said society either by government, religious institutions or similar. Thus it is deceptive to label tradition as irrational, oppressive and limiting. It is a natural occurrence as human groups interact with reality and proceed to choose the optimum solution to problems they face and to pass on that knowledge to others within the group. Given the large influence that genetics and thus heredity has on the human mind and body, these traditions do not generally lose their beneficial role. For example, a healthy marriage results in the comfortable unity of a man and a woman, who consequently form a cohesive household through which children are brought into the world and raised. Or a commitment to gentlemanly virtues, which build character, are useful tools for life and act as suppressants of materialistic tendencies. It is these very consequences which makes them virtuous. They seek to upgrade the individual rather than to degrade them.
Adding to the above, what we see today is the dissolution of traditions like marriage and the admiration of virtues, to name but a few, in favour of the pursuit of the very ideals tradition sought to marginalise. Women pursuing a career instead of raising the children. Young people increasingly falling into vices, such as crime, drug addiction, alcoholism, promiscuity and nowadays, a social media obsession. Tradition, just like in academia, is seen as dull and useless by these people - a restraint on the personal choices of those who do not subscribe to the idea of human responsibilities, but instead lament that their human rights are being infringed when someone tells them not to swear in public. Such a situation is something that we are meant to have ‘progressed’ to. One of the most dire consequences is that it is not just these deviant individuals, but the current political and cultural orthodoxy, which is seeking to break apart the collective nature of society. The followers of these trends do not realise that in doing so they are destroying society, but the leaders do. No society can exist without organisation, structure, hierarchy, leadership, order and of course, tradition.
Secondly, it is suggested that discussions such as the above are irrelevant and unproductive because there is no objective means of assessing reality, of passing judgement or of determining what is correct. This is now a common position within academia, the media and popular culture, because it fits nicely with the liberal-Left paradigm which is to be found there. It diminishes hereditarianism and elevates constructivism, subjectivism and interpretivism. Respectively, hereditarianism refers to the inheritance of characteristics, constructivism to the idea that society is not organically evolved but constructed, subjectivism to the portrayal of any statement as a mere opinion, and interpretivism to the idea that nothing ‘is’ until it is ‘interpreted’. The latter especially is what has led to the absurdities of modern art and architecture, where a splash of paint or a plate glass window tells a story, rather than simply being an ugly painting or a poor design choice.
Thirdly, the progress being advocated and implemented involves taking multiple paths to the same goal, in this case so that no one is allowed to escape. These would include: equality, diversity, modernity, feminism, neoliberalism and globalisation. None of these are in tune with what is best for the human body and spirit. I will very briefly highlight why. Equality is unnatural, because our genes differentiate us from the moment of our birth and then our upbringing makes further tweaks in positive or negative directions. Diversity, especially racial, cultural and sexual diversity, ruins homogeneity which is the foundation of a nation. Modernity is of course the opposite of tradition and thus works against it. Feminism does not emancipate women, it takes them away from the best pursuit of all – that of the family and the home. Neoliberalism serves to detraditionalise the economy through the privatisation of domestic assets – often transferred outside of the country - and the allowance and encouragement of mass foreign imports. Globalisation serves to create an ‘ever-closer union’ of the entire world, through opening up national economies and increasing immigration levels. Of course, this mixture will mean the loss of national distinctions and a poorer, duller world overall. But the benefits that the international elites will accrue ensure that such concerns do not matter to them.
The How and When
Now that we have surveyed what the erosion of tradition means, we can turn to how it has been accomplished. It did not happen overnight. It has been a long and sustained attack. Some trace it back to the end of the Second World War, when we were informed by our leaders that nationalism was obsolete, some to the machinations of the Frankfurt School, with its critical theorists aiming to deconstruct society and some to the French Revolution with the famous adopted slogan of ‘Liberty, Equality, Fraternity’. I am most convinced by the latter as the time when the damage really began in earnest, although I believe the roots may well go back much further, especially considering who is often claimed to be behind these changes, which I will refer to later.
Thus over the centuries a steady and persistent assault has taken place. Miniature revolutions funded, again by hostile international elites, and organised by the equivalent of today’s Social Justice Warriors dismantled the aristocracies and monarchies, which acted as a bulwark against change for the sake of change and other equalitarian and individualistic pursuits. The culmination of these series of revolts in Europe was of course the Russian Revolution of 1917, celebrated by the usual suspects. Religious authorities were also infiltrated and subverted over time. Compare today’s Pope to those of old for example. It is difficult to ascribe his appointment and his views merely to coincidence.
In addition to the destruction of the old order via these uprisings, its institutions were gradually taken over by liberal-Left ideologues, without any cohesive opposition from the remains of traditional conservatism. One need only observe the academic consensus on the affairs of today to reveal their distance from normality. Positions on which there is near unanimous backing include the following:
- Providing funds and support to foreign powers such as the European Union
- Advocating population replacement via ethnic heterogeneity
- Inventing theories for equality and hate speech, and subsequently lobbying for their implementation via law
- Voting for the Labour Party
- Reading the Guardian and listening to BBC Radio 4
Further views which hold the backing of at least a significant minority include such exotic opinions as ‘combating transphobia’, ‘decolonising Britain’s curriculum’ and ‘fighting the patriarchy’. It can be argued that intellectuals will always aim to remain sceptical whilst providing constructive criticism of society, but it appears this is the case no longer. To critique a society by supporting that which will cause its destruction appears more revolutionary than critical, but it is for the reader to judge.
There have been many theories on which groups and individuals have been at the forefront of societal deconstruction. Most of them focus on elites who are above everyday society by virtue of connections, status and wealth. Where they differ is on the composition of these elites. The liberal-Left assert that it is the white male British top 1%, who only act to preserve the status quo for others like them. They point to the Conservative Party and its donors, senior figures from large corporations and those who work in the financial sector. The Libertarians and Civic Nationalists assert that capitalism has been distorted by corporatism and cronyism, essentially similar to the liberal-Left position but minus the passive-aggressive attitude to white males and the advocacy for a larger state. The dissident-Right highlights Jewish influence within each of these domains and others, and argues that it is primarily this group which directs society. They point to various organisations and policy decisions. These seem to be the three theories prevalent in mainstream and alternative political thought relating to who is behind the erosion of tradition.
This is a more speculative area of the discussion, and generally depends on which theory or combination of theories the reader subscribes to. However, it can be said that any action depends on individual self-interest, in-group preference or a combination of the two. For example, the 1% may act as individuals to accumulate wealth, perhaps by using complex tax structures, or as a group to ensure that their collective status is preserved, perhaps by donating to neoliberal political parties. Members of the same ethnic group may, if they have a high degree of ethnocentrism, prioritise their own people over others for personal and/or group gain. Ethnic lobbying organisations serve this exact purpose. In a heterogeneous nation, competing group preferences clash and result in native traditions being dissolved inside a secular, multiracial society where the only common traditions are materialistic ones. A nation that is homogeneous, cohesive and united is not easy to take advantage of. A nation divided is a nation exploited. The elites referred to in the previous section have known this in the past and continue to be aware of it today.
This essay was intended to be a broad overview of societal decline. The what, the how, the when, the who and the why. Consequently, it has not been referenced. However, below is a selection of websites expanding upon the themes touched upon here and some reading lists that can be used to explore the erosion of tradition in-depth. It is to be hoped that this article helps the reader to build a clear picture in their mind about this subject, whatever their ideological persuasions.
Please note: All claims made are for the reader to personally evaluate.
Libertarian/Civic Nationalist sites:
General articles and interest:
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