On January 6th, 2021, in wake of the certification of the 2020 United States Presidential Election, the world was struck by a violent and chaotic riot barraging the United States Capitol. During this exhibition, an unkempt man, sporting a horned Viking hat, made his way into what many consider the world’s most prestigious chamber of democracy. He proceeded to pace around until making his way to the Speaker’s platform. There, we have all seen the iconic image of a deranged outcast occupying the same space of what has historically stood for grand republican eloquence. At that moment, it did not as much. The historically venerated chamber was dishonored and stood seemingly feeble in wake of the sea of conspiracy nuts and revolutionary apostates.
The media had a field day making the vulgar display of power out to be more than just that. For them it was an insurrection, an attempted coup spearheaded by the President. For some on the left, a white supremacist rebellion. Yet all these assessments seem to miss the real cause. Nothing other than the cult of personality surrounding the President, bolstered by oft ludicrous conspiracism and narcissistic rhetoric by fellow-travelling enablers were responsible. The cohort of what has evolved to be the MAGA-right, funded through the countless laundering traps of fake legal funds and grifting opportunists, lays almost all the blame for bolstering unsubstantiated election fraud claims. This predatory (and quite rich) faction on the right has carried the nationalist and conservative banner through the mud to satisfy their own disingenuous, greedy aspirations.
Yet, the New Right, consisting of postliberals like the Edmund Burke Foundation, and antiliberals like the gentleman at Ius & Iusitium, has for quite some time seen an alliance with these individuals as necessary for the future of national conservatism. After all, the MAGA-right despises the establishment, seeks to bolster the working class, and return to tradition. From 2016 until the election 2020, this alliance was sustainable. A populistic President with nationally conservative rhetoric presided over the strongest nation on the planet. However, since President Trump’s loss in the wake of 2020, the MAGA-right has taken such an utterly incomprehensible and irrational turn, that they have proven to no longer be respectable political actors for us to consider. They have opened the door for attacks on nationalist-adjacent Senators like Josh Hawley and Ted Cruz. They have holstered upon a pedestal of Trump’s cult of personality over that of their very own flag. Not only are such actions immoral, but they are also ultimately non-optical. The political benefit of association with the utterly depraved and unabashed swindlers of the MAGA-right has ceased entirely.
Problems still do arise. As immoral as they are, they have fooled a great many of the public. The percentage of the Republican party affected by this subversive leech of a brand is unknown as of now. What is known is the size is massive, easily a majority – and probably more than that of the party. The duty then, must fall upon genuine national conservatives of the New Right to make a case for true working-class, warrior reformism. If this is not to be done, the MAGA-right will swallow all momentum they once held by continuing down a path of political isolation and idiocy.
In a 2018 piece I wrote entitled Identify a New Order. I went over how a strain of Trumpism was reshaping foreign policy to a neorealism, away from the nation-building of yesteryear. With the nomination of Antony Blinken as Secretary of State, his hostility to China & hesitation towards nation-building, that prognosis appears to be accurate. As we can see from circumstances like this, there are tangibly important changes that the Trump administration has been responsible for. These monumental shifts will outlast the administration, and persist within the status quo for the age to come. That should not go unnoticed. The New Right must acknowledge the importance of President Trump no matter his flaws, and use his nationalism as a platform to build upon. What we cannot do is become slaves to the cultural icon of Donald Trump, we must not embrace the shakiest leg of our New Right stool, instead we should seek to replace it.
The left-populist working class, now largely minority, serves as an important pool to invest in. Hispanics voted in record numbers for Republicans in 2020. The states of Florida and Texas, despite their suburban Democratic trends, were thwarted from flipping blue because of these gains. The future of the New Right and the conservative movement lie in embracing this coalition of voters.
There are still gains to be had in union households, as well. After the Biden Administration attacked the Keystone XL Pipeline, home of tens of thousands of well paying union jobs, it should serve as no surprise if in the future these voters reconsider there 2020 support. In New Mexico, as well, the Biden Administration’s attack on fracking has threatened the basic foundations of the state economy. Hispanics and unionized whites are clearly two of the necessary groups for a re-imagined three legged stool to aggressively target.
When viewing the necessary sideling of the MAGA-right, consider for a moment the birth of William F. Buckley’s fusionism and distancing of the Birchers. Although the Birchers provided significant wins for the conservatism in the 1950s, there descent into irrationalism made them uncompromisably volatile, and an utter burden on the movement.
On a more positive note, the Disraelian one-nation conservatism of the 19th century provided a needed restructure of British Tory interests to that of the common man, rather than that of the aristocrat. Disraeli was able to isolate right from wrong aptly as well. He writes in Sybil, “I am a Conservative to preserve all that is good in our constitution, a Radical to remove all that is bad. I seek to preserve property and to respect order, and I equally decry the appeal to the passions of the many or the prejudices of the few.” We must parrot a similar disposition in the struggle for a better coalition. If we sacrifice the honesty and righteousness of what we believe in, a better movement will surely succeed us.
But do not mistake honesty for strategy. As Adrian Vermeule wrote in a 2017 article entitled “A Christian Strategy”, a soft Machiavellianism is both rooted in conservatism and Christianity. Morally, it is as justifiable as the realistic common good is protected. Carl Schmitt described this in the legalsphere as a division between the normative and the exception. Much like Schmitt’s legal argument, there is room for the exception in politicking – yet it requires an utmost moral norm. The common good principle serves as a bridge between this, but it does require the moral, and courageous men we very much lack.
2024 will serve as a necessary statement from the New Right on where we stand, and on how our policies are more than the spoon-fed rhetoric of Trumpism. Still, as mentioned previously, it does not cease to enter my mind that this elephant-sized task requires courageous men. But were the bull mooses and trust-busters not courageous men? The abolitionists and pioneers? If we lose courageous men, we lose the United States. A neglect of one is a loss of the other.
To create a sustainable New Right of the future, we must re-imagine the three legged stool that withstands it. By rejecting the conspiracy theorism and embracing the multiracial working class like has been done before, we may begin to see its actualization. But what must never be forgotten is that a common good sovereign is the harbinger of any New Right of the future coming to pass.
The painting which appears in the header is La rencontre by French naturalist painter Gustave Courbet