This will be a long read, but there were a lot of important areas I wished to tie together which I felt were best presented in a single super-essay. Mostly, this piece is a review of Kill All Normies: Online Culture Wars from 4chan and Tumblr to Trump and the Alt-Right. In reading through it, however, I developed my own observations and assessment of the alt right, hardening my antithesis against the author’s thesis (while listening to Black Sabbath). I also related these back to my existing political and metapolitical considerations and how they interact with the alt right (and its opposition). And so, as I am yet to really find any truly satisfying analysis of the alt right, I shall write my own.
On a recent morning, the lyrics to the song “Iron Man” struck me in a way I’d never quite heard them before. The narrative is one of science fiction, tragedy, and horror, and starts in media res. We are introduced to a silent, hulking man-machine, whose vital signs cannot be determined. The narrator explains that he became this way due to the consequences of time travel, a journey he had undertaken “for the future of mankind.” When he returns, the people reject him as he “just stares at the world,” so he turns to “planning his vengeance.” As their ignorance and rejection persists, the Iron Man “kills the people he once saved… he has his revenge.” It is only through the animation of this purge that the “Iron Man lives again.” Reflexively, I googled the song (from the 1970 album Paranoid) to check if my budding interpretation had any resemblance to the artist’s intent (not that it entirely matters in our age).
Per the Black Sabbath website:
“A man makes a time travel into the future of the world. He sees the apocalypse. When he comes back he tries to warn the world but nobody takes care of him. So he gets mad and has revenge on mankind. In the end it becomes clear that he is the reason for the apocalypse.”
The Iron Man is thus a fallen hero, a Titanic character who descends from a righteous cause of salvation to one of retribution. In trying to save mankind from the future of destruction he has seen, he becomes the agent of that very destruction.
That same morning, I also finished Kill All Normies: Online Culture Wars from 4chan and Tumblr to Trump and the Alt-Right. In what reads like an oversized Salon article, Irish feminist/socialist Angela Nagle presents one of the first notable book-length discussions of the alt right, albeit through her deliberately narrow and skewed interpretation. All flaws aside, she will be considered an expert on the subject by powers that be, and her work will be one of the major books discussing the alt right for a while to come. We’ll return to that in a little while.
Now, as an unironic postmodern traditionalist, I believe that we can and should abuse texts to produce meaning, especially if such meaning can inspire us to resist the liberal cosmopolitan entropy cult. And so “Iron Man,” decades later, “lives again,” because I have called him forward as metaphor. Who cries loudest about degeneracy and the decline of the West to an audience which, in the aggregate, does not care? Who wants to restore order (or in a more metaphysical sense, dharma) to a Western world being engulfed by degenerate, anti-ethnos forces both internal and external? Who preaches against collapse, from a state of degradation and through a vulgar medium? Who wants to resolve the spiritual crisis of the modern world?
Who defends a civilization that will not defend him?
That would be the alt right.
The alt right is the Iron Man given a political (or metapolitical) form. He claims a sort of prescience; he warns of the fall of Western civilization and preaches salvation through the restoration of “the ethnostate” and patriarchy. He calls for nationalism on behalf of a people who believe it is evil to take their own side. He argues for inequality in a world where artificial equality has made reality unnatural. It follows then, that everyone seems to hate or ignore him, as he treads upon their sacred cows without remorse. This generates a kind of feedback loop into his initial transgressive message; he develops a hatred for those cultures and peoples who will not engage in their own self-preservation (especially if they are actively dedicated to the opposite), for those dormant members of his ethnos who he believes can and should be woken. He becomes less patient and more hostile, like a starved beast kept beneath the Colosseum of our society.
It is fitting that the Iron Man appears before us in the Age of Iron, the fourth age following the Golden, Silver, and Bronze—the kali yuga, which René Guénon describes as a cyclical period when:
“The truths which were formerly within reach of all have become more and more hidden and inaccessible; those who possess them grow fewer and fewer, and although the treasure of ‘nonhuman’ (that is, supra-human) wisdom that was prior to all the ages can never be lost, it nevertheless becomes enveloped in more and more impenetrable veils, which hide it from men’s sight and make it extremely difficult to discover. This is why we find everywhere, under various symbols, the same theme of something that has been lost—at least to all appearances and as far as the outer world is concerned—and that those who aspire to true knowledge must rediscover; but it is also said that what is thus hidden will become visible again at the end of the cycle… the development of any manifestation necessarily implies a gradually increasing distance from the principle from which it proceeds; starting from the highest point, it tends necessarily downward” (7).
Julius Evola, in his chapter on the “Doctrine of the Four Ages” in Revolt Against the Modern World, notes that such a paradigm was common to the ancient Greeks, Romans, Persians, and Vedics, and describes the traditional view of degeneration as a decline from divine or semi-divine ancestral stocks to a more beast-like state. Such is an inversion of the modern evolutionary view, which places mankind as evolved from lower, less-complex life forms to the present Homo sapiens (177-179). Certainly the alt right is convinced it lives in the age of barbarism rather than in an enlightened period which has evolved out of barbarism, and that it possesses some sort of eternal, almost religious truth about humanity and the organization of society in the forms of ethnic nationalism and patriarchy.
What makes the alt right “alt” more than anything else is its radical disconnection from mainline politics in the name of upholding this revelation, mainline politics largely consisting of debates over policy adjustments to the demo-bureaucratic state. The Iron Man repudiates the values of the people he attempts to rescue and their system.
In “Iron Man” we find a surprisingly coherent metaphor for alt right prophets of the decline. The European and Eurocolonial peoples he tries to save but comes to hate are the normies. Their vanguard of resistance to the alt right is the liberal cosmopolitan coalition, composed of demo-bureaucrats, academia and the media, multinational corporations, and the more rank-and-file zealots who, freed from political expediency and diplomacy, are as unapologetically extreme as possible. These forces of the “dark age” view identity as both a form of oppression to be liberated from and a marker of virtue-status which can be weaponized for the purposes of acquiring social capital and chastising of “racist” profligates. Contradiction abounds on both sides.
The Iron Man has tasked himself with leading his folk against these bringers of the apocalypse, yet ‘his people’ have rejected him, so drawing his ire. As he becomes the greater agent of transgression and prophet of societal destruction, the line between saving civilization and his resignation to damning all those in his way grows muddled. In his grapple with liberal cosmopolitans for the soul of the masses, rather than the witnessing the forces of order struggle against those of disorder, we find the forces of disorder claiming to fight for order against the forces of order which claim to fight for disorder.
Understanding the Alt Right and Alt Lite through a Paradigm of Castes
The subjects of Nagle’s “online culture wars” thus array themselves against one another: the neo-Nietzschean alt right prophets whose white fists pound the gates of the ivory tower, the safely avant-garde seminarians of the institutional left who built themselves up originally through subversive action, and caught between them the loathsome normies. Alas, Nagle does not truly engage with these digital castes she has created or with the significance of their culture wars. Instead we are treated to a generic polemic; yes, of course the alt right are “sexist” and “racist” and the left needs to be less tone-deaf about the absurd optics of militantly advocating for forty genders if it wants to have any meaning for normal people. I am not sure we needed a book with a clickbait title about this self-evident truth. We also did not need a book rehashing the history of 4chan, troll culture, Gamergate, and Milo Yiannopoulos’s attempt to brand himself around these things without branding himself as these things. That is, however, what has been written, mostly contrary to what was advertised by Kill All Normies. Perhaps something along the lines of Feminism and Its Discontents would have been a better book for Nagle to write.
Discussion of the actual alt right is buried in Kill All Normies somewhere (though without my annotations I would have lost track of it), and it will be considered later on. However, there can be no real understanding of where Nagle is right and wrong without first correctly identifying and taxonomizing the alt right as something more than a catch-all term for an alliance of “racists” and people willing to not immediately shun “racists.” It is to sketching this framework we now turn.
For lack of a more apt paradigm we shall observe correspondences between the broadest spectrum of the alt right and the social strata of Vedic India. At the very least, such pairings will have more explanatory power than an author with glowing reviews from Jacobin and Chapo Trap House. Sanskrit loanwords are also fairly trendy in illiberal circles. Such are the castes of the new transgressive, dissident right:
- Brahmin – The thought leaders of the alt right, people who produce the ideological content and messages of primarily ethnic nationalism, but also with regard to religious and metaphysical formation, gender roles, how society should be organized, foreign policy, and so forth. As such, this group is mostly podcasters, bloggers, publishers, and organizers—people for the promotion of ethnic European and Eurocolonial samizdat.
- Kshatriya – These are the faceless troll armies which had their cultural genesis on anonymous imageboards, where the art of the transgressive rightist meme was delivered to man by a brutal, Promethean, collective unconscious. They are the anime girls of Twitter who ask if a user is Jewish before unleashing their sun-blotting barrage of shitposts. If they give serious thought to anything, it is how to inflict more misery more efficiently upon their targets, something they pride themselves on to no end, and not without justification either. The meme warrior knows what his role is and executes it with unmatched finesse. Nagle actually captures their praxis rather well, writing “wherever you find even the lightest version of the online right… you will now also find a deluge of the worst racial slurs imaginable, vicious commentary about women and ethnic minorities, and fantasies of violence… Jewish conspiracies and dehumanizing invective against ‘rapefugees’ also follows” (118).
- Vaishya – Much of the “alt lite” are here, journalists and commentators who produce very little in the way of original content but serve as better-funded distribution nodes for watered-down alt right ideas. In some cases they do so contrary to their own designs: no amount of ‘Nazi’ disavowal by Milo Yiannopolous or Gavin McInnes gets them away from being denounced by the establishment media for being racist, sexist, homophobic, Islamophobic, transphobic, etc. While proudly “politically incorrect” or transgressive, they have little philosophy or political science of their own beyond what is termed “classical liberalism,” so one might consider them conservatives of the modern world, or perhaps right-libertarians. These varieties of individualism fit well with their salesman mentality, as they reduce barriers to exchange. The problem is of course that the post-modern world has moved so far past classical liberals that they find themselves on the same side of the divide as Hitler, Robert E. Lee and now Thomas Jefferson. Classical liberalism, relatively speaking, is therefore a dissident “right” ideology. Even if the alt lite is woefully tame, its attacks on a left which is “anti-free speech, anti-free thought, anti-intellectual” and which “has substituted politics with neuroses” fostered an environment where “to be on the right was made something exciting, fun, and courageous for the first time since… well, possibly ever” (118).
- Shudra – The listeners, readers, and amplifiers of alt right content and ideas, whose subscription holds up the superstructure. Like vaishya, they produce very little in the way of original ideas, but unlike them have nothing to gain from repackaging them in a less transgressive format for broader consumption. Shudra are the audience that makes the alt right possible, and occasionally a talent pool for the other castes (trolls have to come from somewhere).
- Dalit – The untouchable normie, a source of revulsion and also a target for ridicule and defamation. To the alt right, they are a bunch of ethno-suicidal, stupid, philo-Semitic, cucked NPCs. Owing to the bipolar hermetic populism of the alt right, most of its normie co-ethnics are seen as both loathsome morons and future citizens of the “white ethnostate.” How the alt right’s extreme brand of ethnic nationalism—running to antithetical to the normative value system of the deracinated West—will ever become accepted by enough normies to be normalized remains to be seen.
Let us now proceed to Kill All Normies, where we shall see the influence of these categories beneath Nagle’s quasi-study of the alt right.
Nagle argues in her opening chapter that the alt right or at the very least “Trumpian meme makers” are a response to the “call-out culture” of “gender-bending Tumblr users, call-out culture being a well-dressed term for the puritanical habit of labeling everything too white ‘problematic.’ This environment “produced a breeding ground for an online backlash of irreverent mockery and anti-PC,” and then “the real wolf eventually arrived, in the form of the openly white nationalist alt-right who hid among an online army of ironic in-jokey trolls” (7-8). This theory presupposes that no one could genuinely believe in white nationalism or racial differences being enough to warrant separation without having first been pushed by the far left. It implies the tribalism we are seeing today at the margins of the American political landscape is purely reactionary.
And it could be. The alt right has intentionally copied the playbook of the far left on a number of accounts, as Nagle will elaborate on in her discussion of transgressive politics. In form (though not substance), the alt right resembles the left more than it does any sort of traditional rightist predecessor. That left has alienated moderates in its becoming more extreme, and as a result may have pushed people into the alt right (and alt lite). Thus both the form and substance of the left have impacted the alt right, giving it tactics, a political enemy, and recruits.
But Nagle does not take this idea much further. It is indeed plausible that being culturally and morally persecuted by all major institutions for being too white or too male or too heterosexual has convinced a growing number of white male heterosexuals that they need to defend their whiteness, maleness, and gender roles by transgressively pushing back against the initial transgressors. I would argue this is a healthy, collective response against a collective threat, the diversity ideology, because to be alive is to react to stimuli. Nagle, being a leftist, does not concede these identities to the white people they belong to as something they have a right to own and defend, but instead takes easy shots at the lunatic fringe of the Tumblr platform as being the catalyst for white political misbehavior (the alt right).
Origin is not the only area in which Nagle’s alt right appears to have almost no agency. She sees its popularization as the product of yet another outside group’s efforts. Already argued is that “Tumblr liberalism” feeds the alt right mind virus. But who are the carriers of this memetic disease, who have brought it to a wider audience than just imageboards, podcasts, and blogs? Nagle blames the “more mainstream alt-lite,” who being the marketers and merchants that they are, “largely flattered it, gave it glowing writeups in Breitbart and elsewhere, had its spokespeople on their YouTube shows and promoted it on social media.” Moreover, these alt light vaishyas end up serving the alt right brahmins and kshatriyas by “unwittingly play[ing] the useful idiots for those with much more serious political aims.” Nagle adds, in the event that “this dark, anti-Semitic, race segregationist ideology” becomes more influential in the United States, “those who made the [alt] right attractive will have to take responsibility for having played their role” (9). The left maintains its friend-enemy distinction as firmly as ever in the face of the alt right; near-nazis are no different from neo-nazis as far as it is concerned. The alt lite will be held liable for the alt right.
So just what is that ‘real’ alt right? According to Nagle:
“a new wave of overtly white segregationist and white nationalist movements and subcultures, typified by spokespeople like Richard Spencer, who has called for a US white ethno-state and a pan-national white Empire modeled on some approximation of the Roman Empire” (11).
Here we have some evidence that Nagle either doesn’t know or care what she is talking about so much as she is just highlighting badthink—ethnic nationalism, segregation, and restoring the Roman Empire are not exactly compatible with one another. (On the other hand, Spencer may not have given these ideas much thought either).
Nagle does however manage to produce a list of alt right issues after citing a Jewish-run, extremist-monitoring group known by the non-sectarian name of “the Anti-Defamation League.” She describes the alt right as “preoccupied” with:
- “European demographic and civilizational decline”
- “cultural decadence”
- “cultural Marxism”
- “creating an alternative to the right-wing conservative establishment, who they dismiss as ‘cuckservatives’ for their soft Christian passivity and for metaphorically cuckholding [sic] their womenfolk/nation/race to the non-white foreign invader” (12).
More badthink to be sure, but at least presented in a more concrete fashion. Again there is no discussion of these ideas or why people might genuinely hold them, but instead an agenda of identifying symptoms and diagnosing a political disease.
So why are these fringe ideas about white identity politics relevant enough to warrant a book in 2017? According to Nagle, they were transferred from “lengthy treatises on obscure blogs” to broader audiences through the “image- and humor-based culture of the irreverent meme factory of 4chan and later 8chan” (13). Here we see the influence of the alt right’s caste divisions: brahmins initiate the ideology and the kshatriya fight to spread it over the electronic battlefield. And so we get Nazi frogs.
Nagle is not happy about the anarchic, decentralized, protean nature of cyberspatial politics that allowed the alt right to emerge, foreshadowing her conclusion early on when she notes “the political rootlessness of this networked, leaderless Internet-centric politics now seems a little less worthy of uncritical celebration” (13). Prior to the Trump campaign, many on the left lauded this cybercultural space because they really enjoyed the ineffective Occupy Wall Street movement and reading coverage of the abortive Arab Spring. Nagle believes, correctly, that seeing digital politics as inherently left-wing was an error. To give an idea of just how mutative this Petri dish is, she presents an alt right genealogy including the “deeply and shockingly misogynist, but also self-depreciating in its own self-mockery of nerdish ‘beta’ male identity” culture of 4chan, which itself pulled influences from “the anime-sharing site 2chan,” the “Something Awful subforum known as the Anime Death Tentacle Rape Whorehouse,” and “films like Fight Club and The Matrix” (14). What brought this together with the alt right was “opposition to political correctness, feminism, multiculturalism, etc., and its encroachment into their free-wheeling world of anonymity and tech” (16).
This chapter then turns into a write-up about Gamergate, and perhaps the only novel idea contained in those particular passages is that “it became possibly the biggest flame war in the history of the Internet so far” (21). Skipping ahead past more coverage of pre-alt right kshatriya raining cruel psychological punishment upon intrusive feminists trying to police their spaces, Nagle makes another decent observation on Gamergate, calling it “the galvanizing issue that drew up the battle lines of the culture wars for a younger online generation” (24).
Finally the horror dawns, the decentralized network “has helped to take the right, not the left, to power” (26). It is of course, not true that the (alt) right Nagle describes in this book has come to power. It supported Donald Trump (who is in the title of her work but largely absent from it) in his campaign to be made manager of the USG, but it is not calling the shots. While Trump has so far flirted with some nationalistic ideas in his speeches, he is not any sort of white supremacist, white nationalist, white segregationist, white separatist, or white imperialist. He is white, however, and since we are ad nauseam reminded in our society that things are “too white,” that is reason enough for cosmopolitan liberals to be up in metaphorical arms.
The Digital World of Transgressive Politics
What Trump and the alt right have the most in common is their politics of transgression. Nagle notes that “transgression has been embraced as a virtue within Western social liberalism ever since the 60s,” and the shock of seeing it embraced from the other side is indeed the entire impetus for her book (28). To her, the alt right is a break with conservative or libertarian thought on the American right, because it is so different in both form and ideas. As Nagle puts it, “the style being channelled by the Pepe meme-posting trolls and online trangressives follows a tradition that can be traced from the eighteenth-century writings of the Marquis de Sade… to what film critics called 1990s ‘male rampage films’ like American Psycho and Fight Club” (28).
Again we get a sense that Nagle doesn’t believe anyone could sincerely believe what the alt right believes, that is a kind of performative outrage coming from irony-relishing sadists. She adds that in the American Psycho novel, “the author had left some ambiguity at the end of the novel, suggesting that the events may have only been the crazed fantasies of the main character,” in which she finds a parallel to the alt right, since “just like the style of the rightist chan culture, interpretation and judgement are evaded through tricks and layers of metatextual self-awareness and irony” (30). Richard Spencer’s fascist saluting was indeed claimed to be “clearly done in a spirit of irony and exuberance.”
Or does sincere belief, albeit evil or amoral as far as Nagle is concerned, lurk somewhere behind these layers of irony? Is “Hail Trump” funny because Trump isn’t Adolf Hitler, or funny because the left calls him and his supporters Nazis and fascists when the majority aren’t? Do those who would salute Trump sincerely wish they had a real fascist while unable to express that desire politically except through the vehicle of Trump? Do white nationalists really want a white nation-state or are they just being punk? Have some more post-modernism: the answers to these questions depend on the audience, and whether any or all of them are affirmative does not change how they will be interpreted by most people, especially the institutionalist left.
Nagle argues that the alt right have embraced a Nietzchean ethos, like that which “appealed to the Nazis as a way to formulate a right-wing anti-moralism,” using this “transgressive sensibility… to excuse and rationalize the utter dehumanization of woman and ethnic minorities in the alt-right online sphere” (38). For Nagle, illiberalism and ethnocentrism are kinds of anti-morality, not genuine rival systems to her own worldview or that of people who think like her. Dehumanization is an interesting claim as well—certainly their are misanthropes and extremely vulgar racists among the ranks of the alt right, but believing that designated others should be excluded from one’s spaces is not unique to the alt right in any way, nor are nasty sentiments held towards out-groups. Just ask her “Tumblr liberals” what they think of straight white males, or Trump voters, or their grandparents.
By the third chapter we finally see more accuracy in Nagle’s writing on the alt right, where she describes it as sort of a right-wing Frankfurt school, or literally “Grasmscian.” Richard Spencer and Steve Bannon have in fact both described themselves variably as right-wing Leninists (for different reasons), as both embrace a philosophy of wanting to totally remake the United States along illiberal lines.
“The French New Right or Nouvelle Droite adapted the theories of Antonio Gramsci that political change follows cultural and social change. Andrew Breitbart’s phrase was that politics is always ‘downstream from culture,’ and was often quoted by Milo… the radical upheavals of Paris 1968 and the rise of the New Left was proof to the demoralized right that the whole culture would now have to be retaken before formal political change could come” (40-41).
In other words, the alt right is about metapolitics; by itself it accomplishes no political objectives except through the transformation of other political actors. Nagle argues that the alt lite have actually been more “successful at changing the culture than formal politics” (though without any quantification) while acting as “the youthful bridge between the alt-right and mainstream Trumpism” for a “movement almost entirely based on influencing culture and shifting the Overton window through media and culture, not just formal politics” (41). While not written with the most diction, the observation is solid—the alt right is much more about ideas and amplification of those ideas than it is about implementing those ideas. The same could also be said of the alt light, except that their views are more moderate and thus closer to actual political implementation. One might suspect that the alt light (vaishya) is financially motivated in being more moderate than the alt right (brahmin), for which puristic principles are the motivating factor. However, Nagle repeatedly conflates and switches the two throughout the book, something which could have been avoided with a better paradigm for understanding the diversity of the growing dissident right-wing.
Consider the following:
“What few on the left were paying attention to… was the alt-light building a multilayered alternative online media empire that would dwarf many of the above [The Young Turks, Jacobin, and Chapo Trap House]. This stretched from white nationalist bloggers in its sparsely populated corners to the charismatic YouTubers and Twitter celebrities in its more popular form. These included right-wing outsiders such as Steve Bannon who, through building a publication like Breitbart, became chief strategist to the US president.
YouTube vloggers produced an abundance of popular commentary… alt-light celebrities like Milo built careers from exposing the absurdities of the kind of Tumblr identity politics that had gone mainstream… ironic, meme-making adolescent shitposters formed a reserve army of often darkly funny chan-style image-based content produces who could be easily summoned in moments like gamergate or whenever big figures like Milo needed backup, to swarm and harass their opponents” (45).
Here the alt right (white nationalist bloggers) appears to actually be a subset of the alt lite rather than the other way around. Alt lite as a term is derivative of alt right, and the latter have given multiple takes on this (1, 2, 3, 4), contrasting themselves as being more ethnic or racial while the alt lite are more about conservatism. Again we can return to a caste-based explanation, through which it is obvious that the ideological thought-leader types are brahmin, the aggressive trolls and shitposters are kshatriya, and the merchants and conveyors of watered-down product to the masses are vaishya, with each being decreasingly “alt right.” The thought-leaders love their orthodoxy, the trolls and imageboard netizens care for their praxis more than than intellectual minutia (call them alt right and see what happens), and the merchants want to sell the least toxic memes.
Selling those memes is what, well, sells. Alt lite vaishya are the most important to Nagle, occupying a great deal of her concern, taking the blame for last year’s massive political upset and the theft of transgression from the left. The alt right are seen as a remote, but harmful nexus of this growing network, one that has had “remarkable success in spreading their ideas through their own alternative and almost exclusively online media content in the absence of traditional media, political establishment bodies or other institutional support” (53).
She credits Milo with having “done more than anyone else to give the alt-right a presentable face, giving even their worst fascistic incarnations positive coverage, despite himself being Jewish, gay, etc.”(49). While I hesitate to call Milo sanitized, Nagle certainly depicts him as such compared to Richard Spencer, who she presents as less of a trollish media manipulator and more as someone “young, even ‘dapper,’ articulate and well dressed for an Internet fascist.” She allows quotes from Spencer to speak for themselves without much embellishment or analysis, a style of writing typical of liberals who work within a paradigm of pointing out how villainous their opposition is and calling it a day. Spencer bytes like “race is something between a breed and a species,” and “peaceful ethnic cleansing” let the audience know that while he won’t call himself Hitler-Voldemort, he certainly sounds like him (51). This is capped off with a retelling of the infamous “Hail Trump, hail our people, hail victory,” which followed shortly after Trump’s election at a conference held by Spencer’s National Policy Institute (52).
Once more we can return to my paradigm of the philosopher brahmins and the merchant vaishyas in discussing the formation of the alt right and its relationship with American politics. By the fourth chapter, Nagle moves on to a discussion of American paleo-conservative writer Pat Buchanan, a pre-alt right brahmin, who led the sort of presidential primary campaign that the vaishya-like Trump would later revamp and win on twenty years later. As she notes, “long before Trump’s election, Buchanan was talking about the white working class as naturally conservative, opposed globalization and neo-liberal trade deals, and pushed for a crack down on immigration” (55). Trump never makes a point of singling out white Americans as an explicit group the way Buchanan did, though his message has proven to be far more popular (or rather, populist) with white Americans. Trump even ‘counter-signaled’ Buchanan, just as an alt lite vaishya does to an alt right brahmin. But whether one is a Buchananite nationalist or a Trumpist nationalist, he is still not a liberal cosmopolitan, and that is what matters to Nagle-types.
Nagle’s “Tumblr Liberalism,” or the Vanguard of the Non-Material Left
Now would be a good moment to break for a quote from philosopher Slavoj Žižek in a 2017 interview about ‘punching Nazis,’ populism, and Trump, because it really captures the transformation in American politics foreshadowed by Buchanan, seized upon by Trump, and momentarily ascendant over liberals:
“Isn’t is sad that the best left-liberal critique of Trump is political comedy? People like Jon Stewart, John Oliver and so on. It’s nice to make fun of him, but you laugh at him and he wins. My God! There is something terribly wrong with playing this game of ironically making fun of Trump.”
While I normally have no interest in Žižek, he is simply too on the mark here in pointing out the left’s haughty preference for mockery rather than debate, and too relevant to our review of a leftist’s book about transgressive right-wing politics—so here is another quote:
“You know what my fear is? Not that Trump will fail and there will be chaos, but for some real period of time, what if he succeeds? You know what happened in Poland? The Law and Justice party, they did such a tremendous social transfer to the poor that no elected European government would dare to do it. They lowered retirement age, they made better conditions for health care, more help for mothers with children and so on. No wonder that people like them. My God! They did something that no left government dares to do… If you want better conditions for the working class, you have to be populist right wing.”
This is not a world Clintons and Bushes were prepared to deal with politically, which is how Trump became no. 45. The legacy nominal left and right have been caught off-guard by the fusion of nativism with economic populism, as both ideas had been long banished from the respectable, high political ideologies. To her credit, Nagle understands the collapse of inherited paradigms quite well in writing that “the rise of Milo’s 4chan-influenced right is no more evidence of a resurgence of conservatism than the rise of Tumblr-style identity politics constitutes a resurgence of the socialist or materialist left” (57). We find a situation in which the right wants access to well-paying jobs while the left wants access to social status, in which opposition to expanding the labor market via immigration isn’t the credo of liberal-lionized union bosses but of under-employed “racists.”
Or at least, I find that. Nagle manages to counter every seemingly good observation with a lousy one. She then attributes “the rise of Milo, Trump and the alt-right” to “the absolute hegemony of the culture of non-conformism, self-expression, transgression and irreverence for its own sake,” something which appeals to “those who believe in nothing but the liberation of the individual and the id” (67). This is wildly incompatible with characterizing the alt right as “racist” or “sexist,” as both of those rely on us-and-them distinctions, i.e. tribalism and in-group preferences. So are the alt right ethnic nationalists or are they egoist-anarchists? Nagle cannot decide.
What she does seem to be better versed in is “Tumblr liberalism,” the subject of chapter five, which deals with “creating scarcity in an online economy of virtue” (68). Tumblr liberalism has as its subject “the minutia and gradations of rapidly proliferating identities, and the emotional injuries of systemic cultural prejudices,” and its actionable items are “symbolic representative diversity and recognition” (69). This is far from the materialism of the old left or of the orthodox marxists. It is so far in fact, that for years the alt right has called this left ‘cultural marxist,’ since it does not concern itself primarily with issues of class but of race and sex. Nagle does mention this term earlier, which is both more encompassing and accurate a way to describe the left she is writing about, but opts to use the term Tumblr liberalism instead.
To illustrate her point, Nagle lists a number of so-called genders that have been created on Tumblr along with the “otherkin” mental illness. These include perplexing labels like “alexigender,” “cadensgender,” “daimogender,” “omnigay,” “technogender,” “xoy,” and “xirl;” and thinking you are part- or fully-nonhuman (72). This “cult of suffering, weakness, and vulnerability” typifies what Nagle calls “contemporary liberal identity politics” (73). The moralizing of these types is duly noted as a “mixture of performative vulnerability, self-righteousness wokeness and bullying” (75). Put more elaborately, Tumblr liberals pursue this Pharisee-like program of pontificating to create “scarcity in an environment in which virtue is the currency that can make or break the career or social success of an online user” (76). In Nagle’s opinion, which I wager is fairly correct, there is an economy of virtue that leftists are simply addicted to signaling over in order to prove who is the holiest of all when it comes to performing the rites of non-white, non-heterosexual, non-male identity politics. She notes that “at first, self-righteously or snarkily denouncing others for racism, sexism or homophobia” was an effective way to be initiated as a proper digital liberal, but this eventually degraded in effectiveness, leading to “a culture of purging” which “targeted those in competition for this precious currency,” which resulted in “attacks increasingly focused on other liberals and leftists often with seemingly pristine progressive credentials, instead of those who engaged in any actual racism, sexism, or homophobia” (76-77).
Of course, if you already believe there is racism (European or Eurocolonial ethnocentric behavior) lurking under every rock, as well as sexism (treating men and women differently instead of treating both as male drone workers) and homophobia (reacting negatively to the social celebration of frequent disease carriers), it isn’t hard to imagine that people nominally on your own side of the political aisle harbor these attitudes too, and therefore they need to be brought out and exorcised in a modern-day struggle session.
The finest example of this is the case of Germaine Greer, an older generation feminist who experienced a purge at the hands of Cardiff University students, self-evidently of a younger generation. Nagle quotes a leader of their students’ union who started a petition against Greer speaking at an event, who attacked Greer for “misogynistic views towards transwomen,” “continually misgendering trans women,” and “deny[ing] the existence of transphobia,” urging that the solution is to “prioritize the voices of the most vulnerable” rather than “invite speakers who seek to further marginalize them.” In Nagle’s opinion, “Greer was transformed overnight from a leading veteran figure” of feminism to someone who “may well have been on the far right” (77-78). And speaking of the far right, due to the shifting of the Overton window, believing that biological women are equal to men while not believing that men who put on a wig and mutilate themselves are women, is now a far right viewpoint. To the contemporary left, all non-allies are equivalent to their worst enemies (nazis, fascists, probably absolute monarchs if we still had those), and therefore a 1960s liberal or a second-wave feminist is Hitlerite.
Perhaps the most intriguing part of Nagle’s discussion of the vanguard left comes via yet another episode at a British university. An apostate Muslim woman from Iran was invited to speak at Goldsmiths University, only to find herself objected to by the campus “Islamic Society” along with the “Feminist Society” and the “LGBT Society” (79-80). One wonders what kind of mental hoops the feminists were required to jump through to back the Islamists against a woman who left Islam, let alone what obstacle course the LGBTists ran to defend Islamists over a secularist. The apostate, who in criticizing Islam moved from being a victim to a victimizer, found herself assailed by an alliance of marxists and Muslims. This is extremely ironic and Nagle demonstrates she is aware of it.
The Islamist-Feminist-LGBTist alliance also raises interesting questions about the alt right theory of institutional multiculturalism being self-defeating. If feminists, homosexuals, and transvestites are willing to not only defer to but come to the aid of Muslims in debates over identity and free speech, then multiculturalism as an ideology has a future that doesn’t involve collapsing into an orgy of violent balkanization along ethnic and religious lines, at least not any time soon. So long as mutual opposition can be maintained against designated enemies (white male heterosexuals, people who criticize Islam, wealthy people who do not virtue signal appropriately about the latest social changes, etc.), the coalition of minorities will endure. That vanguard feminists prefer patriarchy as long as it isn’t European (e.g. Islam) is also a fascinating dynamic to observe. What the future holds for these currents is something the alt right and the Western diaspora should pay attention to, because there is a very real chance that ‘accelerationism’ applied to liberal cosmopolitanism is not going to lead to ethnic nationalism.
Notes on the Manosphere and Sexual Politics in the Alt Right
The next chapter is devoted to the “manosphere” and the “redpill” memespace, in which Nagle surveys everyone from Roosh V (Return of Kings) to Roissy (Chateau Heartiste). She also discusses MGTOW (Men Going Their Own Way, or put more bluntly, men politicizing their loneliness into an ex post facto celebrated lifestyle choice), and the “Proud Boys” scene started by Gavin McInnes (which is devoted to what they call ‘Western chauvinism’). Much of this is tangential to the ethnocentrism and inegalitarianism of the alt right, because one can easily be anti-feminist (or masculinist, I suppose) without embracing tribal politics, nationalism, and hierarchy. On the other hand, writers like Roissy, Vox Day, and F. Roger Devlin, all of whom she mentions, are certainly in the more political camp than they are the sex-centric manosphere. Nagle does offer one interesting critique of the manosphere (which she expands to cover the alt right), charging that:
“A frustrating contradiction and hypocrisy you find in many of these online spaces and subcultures is that they want the benefits of tradition without its necessary restraints and duties. They simultaneously want the best of the sexual revolution (sexual success with pornified women, perpetually dolled up, waxed and willing to do anything) without the attendant insecurities of a society in which women have sexual choice and freedom… this glaring contradiction runs through all of the alt-right when it comes to women. The most important space for the production of alt-right and alt-light aesthetics for years has been 4chan, which is full of pornography that is so disturbing and so intentionally dehumanizing that anyone other than a moral and emotional derelict would be repulsed by it instead of chuckling idiotically, as they seem to do” (96-97).
The “white sharia” meme (1, 2, 3, 4) appears to have been a bit late for Nagle, but surely she would have included it here had her book come out later. Too fittingly, this pseudo-Islamism comes across as peak transgression in attempting to resolve the sexual revolution thesis with the traditional antithesis. Indeed, forcing libertine white women to wear burkas and marry patriarchal husbands is the kind of semi-ironic proposal that could only be floated as a serious topic of debate in our current milieu.
That aside, Nagle’s depiction of the alt right as a bunch of hyper-libidic, sexually depraved (and sexually deprived) men is a kind of alarmist moralizing narrative, the very kind the left makes a point of shriekingly rejecting when it comes to rightist criticisms of “women’s liberation” or of “gay marriage.” No leftist ever concedes that homosexual lifestyles are degenerative to sexual norms or anti-family as opponents frequently charge—they view that claim as one of rank bigotry and paranoid sexual insecurity. Presentation of the entire alt right as somehow sexually evil or hypocritical comes across as standard Freudian analysis. While it may be true for segments of the manosphere that they want contemporary sexual behavior patterns with patriarchal social order, it can hardly be said that the traditionalists of the alt right want pornographers to be their housewives. It is an attempt to paint the already evil racist Nazi bloggers as somehow even more morally repulsive and internally contradictory to her audience, and a fairly obvious one.
What can be said however, is that there is significant discontent with ‘women’s liberation’ and the sexually-driven cultural revolution that has taken root in Western countries since the 1960s (if not earlier). Perhaps counter-intuitively, many men have found themselves dislocated in the world of women in the workplace, easily accessible condoms, birth-control, no-fault divorce, and now Tinder, none of which contribute to family formation and the perpetuity of stable household-civilizational norms. Instead of creating a polyamorous utopia where everyone gets to have sex with everyone, the sexual revolution has bifurcated us into what manosphere types would call alphas and betas, ‘chads’ and virgins—a kind of anomic, high-turnover sexuality among certain members of our society while a depressed, almost inactive by comparison sexuality holds among the rest. (Record numbers of American adults have never married). Nagle cites Devlin, almost praising him, in order to qualify some concessions she does make regarding the alt right view of women:
“On this last point… I think he’s getting to the central issue driving this…. perhaps even the central personal motivation… Sexual patterns that have emerged as a result of the decline of monogamy have seen a greater level of sexual choice for an elite of men and a growing celibacy among a large male population at the bottom.” (97).
Let us dwell for a moment that Nagle did in fact concede that alt right or manosphere writers have a point about what is essentially feminism doing damage to the social fabric and that this is driving resentment. Of course, this doesn’t lead to a reconsideration of her own views or an attempt to view the alt right more sympathetically. If the alt right really is feeding off the deleterious effects feminism is having on the quality of life of non-alpha men, this is going to cause problems in a mass-democratic society, because alpha males are by definition always a minority.
Nagle instead ties this reactionary frustration and its (meta)political outgrowths to the killing spree of Elliot Rodgers, a 22 year-old hapa/Eurasian of British-American and Chinese-Malaysian descent who lived in California and murdered his roommates, attacked a sorority house, and then shot himself. It is highly dishonest of Nagle to cast Rodgers as an emblematic vignette of what she had earlier described as a white supremacist movement, as he was a half-caste MGTOW. To the extent that the manosphere and the alt right can be bridged to one another, it is not through the screeds and bullets of sexually alienated Eurasian men, but through writers whose work bridges those two spheres of ‘whiteness’ and gender. Elliot Rodgers and the motivation for violence he committed, while only possible in a post-patriarchal world, really have little to do with white identity politics as much as they do with an atomized, militant strain of anti-feminism.
As discussed, there are plenty of reasons to be anti-feminist. Feminism is a problem for the right (and the reaction it causes is a problem for the left). The crux of what is called ‘women’s liberation’ in the West, or simply feminism, is captured well in Evola’s Revolt:
“So-called feminism has not been able to devise a personality for women other than by imitating the male personality, so that the woman’s ‘claims’ conceal a fundamental lack of trust in herself as well as her inability to be and to function as a real woman and not a man. Due to such a misunderstanding, the modern woman has considered her traditional role to be demeaning and has taken offense at being treated ‘only as a woman.’ This was the beginning of a wrong vocation; because of this she wanted to take her revenge, reclaim her ‘dignity,’ prove her ‘true value’ and compete with men in a man’s world. But the man she set out to defeat is not at all a real man, only the puppet of a standardized, rationalized society that no longer knows anything that is truly differentiated and qualitative. In such a civilization there obviously cannot be any room for legitimate privileges and thus women who are unable and unwilling to recognize their natural traditional vocation and defend it (even on the lowest possible plane, since no woman who is sexually fulfilled ever feels the need to imitate and to envy man) could easily demonstrate that they too virtually possess the same faculties and talents—both material and intellectual—that are found in the other sex, and that, generally speaking, are required in cherished in a society of the modern type. Man for his part has irresponsibly let this happen and has even helped and ‘pushed’ women into the streets, offices, schools, and factories, into all the ‘polluted’ crossroads of modern culture and society” (164).
This observation was made in the 1930s, before the sexual revolution and well before the formation of the manosphere, that feminism has made women into degraded copies of degraded men. Broadly speaking, the alt right would agree with this reactionary position, even if its parts vary in how anti-feminist they are, or how important they rank anti-feminism as an issue.
Evola also implies a distinction between anti-feminism and ‘misogyny,’ which is no longer appreciated in the mainstream culture wars. What is often termed ‘misogyny’ by (feminist) women, rather than being genuine hatred for women, is just the expression of anti-feminist ideas or attitudes, chiefly that women should behave one way and men another for the optimal outcome. If one were to say he believes women should be proud mothers and devoted wives, he is deemed a sexist, because it is ‘demeaning’ to women to suggest that they perform feminine roles. But if one were to say she believes women should be politicians and business executives, she is a moral paragon because it is righteous to suggest that women perform masculine roles. Then you have the occasional snarky types who ask, “Why not both, why not career women with children?” But anyone who can perform such multiple roles without reducing the quality of each relative to performing one alone is an exception, and should never be a rule. Our society of rising single-mother households is not an improvement of anything except the standard of living of single-mothers, who are being multiplied as a class as a result of the convenience with which we allow these malformed family structures to survive. A preference for gender roles is not hatred of women, but concern for them.
This is a distinction I believe Nagle missed, either deliberately or out of ignorance. Looking to land a hit piece against the alt right, she highlights the transgressive ‘misogyny’ of the manosphere and links it to terrorism. This perspective never allows for the possibility that gender roles are supported in the broader alt right not because of woman-hatred but because of careful analysis of the damage that ‘equality’ has done to our civilization, and yes, our women. Certainly there are alt right woman-haters, but no one says, ‘I desire a wife and children because I hate women.’ A dynamic here has been lost in the name of narrative, in depicting the alt right as psychotic porn enthusiasts rather than men who see themselves as needing to urgently rebuild civilization, starting at home.
Concluding Thoughts on Kill All Normies and the Future of the Alt Right
Nagle’s near-monotonic focus on “transgression” detracts from what could have been a discussion of the emergence of unironic identity politics for whites. She focuses far to much on the culture of 4chan and on the Milo persona, seldom touching on any ideas the alt right actually advocates for except to point out how racist or sexist they are. And while she complains about “Tumblr liberalism,” as if that adds some sort of parity to her critique of “online culture wars,” she opposes it only in form and not in substance.
She does worry, rightly so, that the counter-culture ethos of ironically appropriating ‘offensive’ symbols and ideas, valuing edginess over seriousness, and uncritically exalting the punk is no longer a good position for the left to endorse, writing
“When we’ve reached a point where the idea of being edgy/countercultural/transgressive can place fascists in a position of moral superiority to regular people, we may seriously want to rethink the value of these stale and outworn countercultural ideals” (107).
There is a definite truth written here. Liberal cosmopolitanism is so entrenched as the ideology of the state, private sector, media, academia, intelligentsia, aparatchik–corporatchiks, and so forth that it cannot unironically paint itself as a beleaguered, anarchic, transgressive underdog fighting the forces of oppression and injustice. It is the thesis, not the anti-thesis. It must conjure a villain in the form of Trump and the alt right, a Hitler-Voldemort with legions of Death-Eater klansmen descending upon their multicultural Hogwarts. This is what they actually believe, what they need to believe in order to ‘smash fascism.’ The grip on reality slips quite a bit, but it’s worth reviewing that Trump is not a fascist-white-supremacist-neo-nazi, the alt right does embrace several ideas shared with those ideologies, and the alt right is not in power over any part of the United States.
The alt right’s boots of lead which fill Nagle with dread are those a movement growing louder, while her ideology finds itself assailed on all fronts by the anarchic culture of transgression it once thought served it exclusively. (The center, for that is what liberal cosmopolitanism is, by definition must expect to be attacked from all sides). Assuming the right would always take the form of Reagans and Bushes or follow the cues of National Review was profoundly short-sighted. Such nodes of so-called conservatism go out of their way to meet liberal standards on race and identity politics. On the other hand, perhaps no one could have divined the emergence of a global caste of neo-Nietzchean shitposters declaring war on the world under the banner of a blond mughal.
That war has yet to be resolved. Nagle concludes with a sense of foreboding that “one is almost more inclined to hope that the online world can contain rather than further enable the festering undergrowth of dehumanizing reactionary online politics now edging closer to the mainstream” (120). Belief in gender roles and in ethnic identity and mistrust of foreigners, however, was completely normalized for much of American history until our recent period, in addition to holding sway in old England and further afar still in the Roman Empire and the even more distant Greek polis. These basic human behaviors are being carried on by the alt right, even if they are presented in a highly aggressive and transgressive way. The real aberration is liberal cosmopolitanism, which has recognized the alt right for the genuine ideological, atavistic threat that it is.
A better book on the alt right as that ideological threat to liberalism might be called Rules for Aristocrats: A Subversion Manual for Evolian Alinskyites. The alt right blends a curious mix of ethno-centrism, populism, elitism, esotericism, and post-modernism in its tech- and media-savvy campaign against the liberal establishment’s existing factions. This is a strength while on the offensive but presents difficulties in formulating a coherent worldview beyond screeching when put on the defensive. What the alt right wants either cannot be articulated in a way that appeals to all its purported members or is something so impractical politically that it serves as escapism for people alienated enough to reject the status quo but not alienated enough to revolt against it.
There are too many enfranchised liberals and non-Europeans for the “ethnostate” meme to mean anything to most audiences other than an unpleasant (and unrealistic) amount of force being unleashed in a sadistic war against equality. While revolutionary ethnic natioanlism could come to pass and so remain the central focus of the alt right as an ideology, what may prove to be more appealing and practical is transgressive, swaggering, inegalitarian (white) identity politics—the seeds of which are perhaps being sown more by Trump than anyone else.
Polling by the Hispanic Heritage Foundation in fall 2016 found that non-Hispanic white highschool boys favored Trump by a whopping six-to-one margin. There can be no clearer repudiation of the anti-white, anti-male, and anti-heterosexual brand of the left that has dominated academia and media in recent years. While that same left celebrates what is being called “Generation Z” as the most “diverse” (least white) cohort of Americans, this development should be cause for extreme alarm, as no other people are as ripe for the absorption of alt right ideas as young white men who support Trump. This rejection of Hillary Clinton and all the schoolmarm liberalism she stood for is a clear indicator that younger white Americans are not being domesticated by liberalism but feralized, so naturally they will be drawn to transgressive politics. In sympathetic harmony, the rising paradigm of white male noncompliance will likely kick the Tumblr liberal/cultural marxist propensity for purges and struggle sessions into overdrive, as any organizations staffed or managed by large numbers of liberals will be on more edge than usual over vetting, hiring, promoting, or admitting young white males to their ranks, in addition to looking for existing ‘racists’ to fire.
This does not necessarily translate into support for an “ethnostate” however, and the future of the alt right may not necessarily be racial or ethnic nationalism. Given how ‘diverse’ their generation is, and that the same poll found over a third of male Hispanic students and a slim majority of male Asian students also supported Trump, white nationalism isn’t guaranteed to be the logical conclusion for Gen-Z white males. A more tribalistic and already familiar ethnic-bloc politics could be more appealing, even if it is contrary to the wishes of the alt right brahmins while more extreme than the message of the alt lite vaishyas.
Such politics would find itself competing in a dog-eat-dog pluralistic country, but also attract more adherents and be easier to digest for people less interested in remaking their society and more in securing their basic needs against other groups which are starting to outnumber them. Nowhere is it set in stone that ethnic nationalists and shitposting will defeat liberal cosmopolitans and Tumblr snowflaking. There is more than one way to bring down an opposing worldview, something the alt right should be more familiar with given how many of its brahmins are former libertarians or anarcho-capitalists, or even former marxists (if not inspired by marxists in their tactics). The opposition to the left endures but the forms evolve. The alt right’s thought leaders might embrace ethnic nationalism, but if that will filter down into a denationalized audience without mutation remains to be seen. (Already it has mutated in the hands of the alt lite).
At 78 years-old, Pat Buchanan may not live to see the average white American male agree with him. But already it seems most of Gen-Z’s white males would have voted for him while their parents didn’t.
A fitting August 2017 headline from The Onion reads, “Nation Begs Disaffected Youth Gravitating Toward Neo-Nazism To Get High And Play Xbox Instead.”
“At press time, the nation was reminding sullen adolescents who were starting to read about white genocide on neo-Nazi websites that they could just as easily use that time to view disturbing hardcore pornography.”
It is too soon to know the legacy of the alt right and we cannot fault Nagle for not knowing it. But for a book purporting to analyze the alt right, it certainly could have benefited from some speculation about what the future might hold. Surely she doesn’t anticipate race war. On the other hand, surely she doesn’t believe more Clinton-Obama neo-liberalism is the future, and has had her faith in the far left as the permanent movers of the Overton window shaken. We are left with a sense that changes are happening, but not an understanding of what they mean. She discusses thesis and antithesis, but her Hegelianism lacks a synthesis.
Instead, for the time being we have Kill All Normies. (And let god sort them out, I suppose). If destruction is an act of creation and part of any balanced order, perhaps the maligned meme of killing all normies need not be taken literally at all for it to be successful. We might interpret it as the eradication of a mindset by another mindset, of an “inner jihad” which achieves the destruction of the subconscious rot of Western civilization through a greater struggle than any physical war. One has to overcome their internal normie before they can expect to reshape others. Rule by the whim of the masses would become a thing of the past, to be replaced by a civilization which orients itself towards higher truth and form rather than allotting economic rations to anti-social hordes out of a sense of guilt and moral bankruptcy. Instead of a Western diaspora tending to its ancestral fires while cosmopolitan demo-bureaucrats burn everything European to the ground, there would be a Western renaissance of blazing illumination and expression of our civilization.
The Angela Nagles of the world do not want to see this. They want the state to enforce more liberal cosmopolitanism and more equality, and so see the alt right as the real cancer on society rather than their own set of presentist memes. But if Iron Man cannot save you, he will destroy you. If the alt right is to survive as a metapolitical movement, it must not turn to nihilism and the destruction of the world it wants to save, something all too tempting for a populist-elitist Frankenstein philosophy when faced with the obstinacy of normies.
Evola, Julius. Revolt Against the Modern World. 1934. Translated by Guido Stucco, 1995. Vermont: Inner Traditions International.
Guénon, René. The Crisis of the Modern World. 1927. Translated by Arthur Osborne, 1942, Marco Pallis and Richard C. Nicholson, 1962. Revised by William Stoddart, 2001. Hillsdale, NY: Sophia Perennis.
Nagle, Angela. Kill All Normies: Online Culture Wars from 4chan and Tumblr to Trump and the Alt-Right. 2017. Winchester: Zero Books.