one of marx’s central insights, right up there with dialectical materialism itself, was his notion of the proletariat. modern leftist politics concerns itself excessively with virtue but marxism — real, old-school marxism — is not a religion, but rather a cognitive tool for understanding an unjust society and a strategy for effecting change upon that society. the proletariat, as marx defined it, was simply that group of people that had both the motivation and the means to alter the balance of socioeconomic power. the bourgeoisie, the ruling class, had the means to do so, but not the motivation, whereas the mentally and physically disabled had the motivation, but not the means. it is not that marx saw the workers as of some special merit, as mao did — he simply understood that appealing to anyone else was a losing game. the working class was exploited not because the bourgeois were superhumans capable of physically coercing them en masse, but rather because the workers were rats in a maze of the bourgeoisie’s own design, lost and deceived, their energies carefully redirected inwards where they could not pose a threat to their masters. the act of revolution, put simply, is the act of refusing to play by the bourgeoisie’s rules.
well, that was how things worked in the olden days. but in the latter half of the 20th century and onwards, perhaps enabled by the horrors of world war and the Holocaust, a new kind of power emerged. the early antifeminist and socialist writer Ernest B. Bax foresaw this very shift, and consequently warned in the late 19th century against the feminist sentiments that were popular in his time (and have only grown more popular since). the weak, he said, did of course deserve consideration and protection from the strong, but should not be permitted to overcome and enslave the strong outright. he coined the term “aggressive weakness” to describe a dynamic that has come to define the modern West, wherein one’s weakness per se becomes a source of authority and thus power.
this development is novel. i do not know of any other historical examples, isolated incidents aside, where not force but guilt has been wielded as a coercive implement. it is no coincidence that modern “leftists” have left the working class by the wayside; they have enthusiastically grasped this new technology of power and are wielding it with gusto. it creates scenarios that would have been incomprehensible in the honor cultures of the past, wherein weak individuals bicker with each other over who is the weakest, and thus most entitled to moral and ontological authority, while the strong kneel silently, awaiting the command of those who have been anointed their betters.
one could argue at length the merits of this technology of power, but it alarms me for one cardinal reason. history has taught us over and over again that when you take the battered and traumatized, give them power, and unleash them upon the world, only bloodshed and horror ever follows. Israel is of course the most prominent modern example, but we forget that Nazi Germany itself was the ultimate result of a nationwide trauma, resentment, and humiliation endured at the hands of the Entente in the Treaty of Versailles. injustice must certainly always be curtailed wherever it arises, but if you allow the victims themselves to wield the javelin of retribution, it will strike far afield of its target. the proper course of action is for the strong and righteous to exact retribution on behalf of those wronged, as was done e.g. by the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg. this is the central reason why in liberal democracies trials are decided by a disinterested judge or a jury of one’s unbiased peers — and it comes as no surprise that feminists, today’s greatest champions of the weak over the strong, are so heavily invested in undermining and dismantling these institutions, propagating a doctrine that anyone who claims to be a victim (at least, a victim of a man) must be believed automatically no matter the outcome.
i have long feared that the current course of the “leftist” movement (in reality a corpse puppeteered by small-minded bourgeois-nationalist ideologues) will not be to abolish exploitation, but rather to only invert our present hierarchy of exploitation. one must therefore note that this new technology of power eerily resembles that which the bourgeoisie has used for the entirety of human history to keep the materially far stronger working class in a state of abject subjugation.