The Last Stand of Liberal Technocrats
Here at The Red Ensign, I said it with Wynne and I’ll say it with Trudeau: the Liberals are looking to save face and cover their tracks at the last moment in order to win the upcoming 2019 election. Such a pathetic tactic makes one wonder if they’re even trying, or if they foresaw their demise shadowed by that of the Progressive Conservatives under Harper, who weren’t much different than the Liberals in terms of copping out to Neoliberal trade and immigration policy.
With Wynne, her last stand consisted of increasing the minimum wage and providing free child care. Trudeau must be anticipating the rising labour-left wing populism of the NDP, which is why he has nationalized the pipeline, and this is why the liberals are pushing for the pot legalization deadline before the election.
The Liberal Party of Canada ultimately conforms to a similar model as many centre-left, socially progressive parties out there. Like Macron and Merkel, Trudeau ultimately pursues a Neoliberal model that relies on progressively taxing the private sector while running deficits and increasing inflation in an attempt to invest in R&D as a way of making up for this. This is ultimately a model of technocracy that conforms to the views of Pre-Marxist, Libertarian Socialists like Saint Simon, who ultimately wanted a private class of innovators (scientists and engineers) to make the executive-level decisions. Sadly, the Liberal Party of Canada is a far shot from the kind of technocratic end goal it seeks to reach. The socially progressive side of the Liberals has ultimately prevailed over the technocratic tendencies.
Technocracy, like Futurism, is a term that, while often used outside the context of their origins, still bear some semblance to the doctrines of Saint Simon and Filippo Marinetti in terms of certain fundamental dispositions. While Technocracy emphasizes the rule of scientific management, Futurism emphasizes a drive to replace the old with the new. With that being said, the origin of these terms has been taken out of context by certain movements that peddle themselves under said labels.
There is some truth to the Technocratic and Neoliberal idea that lowering the cost of production through innovation is a way to increase public revenue accrued through progressive taxation. There is some truth to the idea that this revenue could be used to facilitate wealth distribution. This idea falls short where businesses fail and where some innovations aren’t necessarily that creative or useful for the public (e.g. slimmer tablets). But one cannot help but get off the bandwagon where Technocracy meets Neoliberalism and Progressivism–– namely, under the merger of the Transnational with the Transracial, and the Transracial with the Transexual, ultimately in order to facilitate a kind of Transhumanism. In such a model, the kind of wealth distribution generated by any technological innovation is directed towards the increasing populations of victimized minorities, who collectively serve as a kind of model for the sort of human that the Progressive Technocrats want to selectively breed.
On the other hand, the Traditional-Technocratic merger is embodied more in the U.S.A, with more-Conservative leaning types like: Elon Musk, Peter Thiel (one of the Co-Founders of Paypall, Board Members of Facebook, and notorious Trump supporter), and even Curtis Yarvin (otherwise known as Mencius Moldbug, who, along with Nick Land, was one of the pioneers of the Neoreactionary Right (dubbed “NRx”) and the Dark Enlightenment, a movement which seeks to repudiate enlightenment values). This type represents a top town approach to Right-Wing Politics, based in playing off of the innovators who are smart enough to become movers and shakers. The archetype that they embody is one worth appealing to by any and by many Right-Wing political movements, as these are the people who can outline project proposals down to their specific, technical details.
Technocracy would far better serve a Socially Conservative and Economically Nationalist agenda, mirroring the marriage of Gaullism with High-Tech Colbertism which characterized the rise of France as an industrial and technological Superpower from 1945 to 1980. The Gaullist model (named after the autocratic leader Charles De Gaulle), also known as Dirigisme, rested on using state intervention and, in some cases, nationalization, with the use of public revenue to fund R&D. This led to a period known as “The Thirty Glorious Years”, in which France sustained an unprecedented average growth rate of 5.1%. High Tech Colbertism (named after the Mercantilist Jean-Baptiste Colbert, economic advisor to Louis XIV, “the Sun King”) emphasized the nationalist nature of this model, which used subsidies, tariffs, and monopoly privileges in order to create major national players and mature industries that could generate the wealth to fund R&D.
In Germany, prior to the immigration crisis, Technocracy was paired with a kind of labour-left, economic nationalism and social corporatism, within which labour unions were guaranteed their own terms and a certain degree of representation, allowing for stable public-private planning that was mediated by the state. Since then, Progressivism has gone as far as to full-on supplant the Technocratic tendencies which sustained it, and this should serve as a warning to nations like Canada, where Technocrats have fused with Progressives instead of more Traditional Conservatives.
Singapore, Dubai, and Monaco, serve as some of the most successful places in the World in terms of their GDP per capita, rating on the HDI, and crime rate, and they all have a high degree of surveillance, a high degree of state security, and a high degree of policing. They serve as particular nation-states that have successfully merged traditionalism and nationalism with technocracy, and the positive nature of the outcome is self-evident.
Mencius Moldbug once claimed that if California was governed by Apple as the state with Steve Jobs as king, it would be doing substantially better than it is now. In his essay “The Dire Problem and the Virtual Option”, he expands on this in the following terms:
“After six months of the King’s peace, it is safe for any Californian to walk anywhere in any Californian city, at any time of day or night. Every human in the state is legal and identified. The trade balance is neutralized, creating new industries sufficient to employ all Californians. All post-1950 architecture is classified for demolition and replacement. Young Californians in all grades are tackling their new classical curriculum. And so on. Life has become better, comrades! Life has become more joyful… The whole idea of the King’s peace is that you can take a shower without worrying about Norman Bates.”
Now, imagine if Donald Trump was actually serious about the jokes he made regarding implementing China’s President for Life Policy and imitating the degree of discipline in North Korea. Imagine if he offset this despotism with the enlightenment provided by Technocratic advisers like Thiel and Musk. Imagine what this could do for Trump’s “Space Force”, and imagine the extent to which he could be an actual “God Emperor”. Trudeau has also made an offhand remark about imitating the kind of dictatorship implemented in China, and if the Liberals really wanted to make a powerful last stand, they would follow through on this.
If Canada did engage in the kind of Technocracy defined by Trumpist Galactic Imperialism and High-Tech Colbertism, then maybe it could stand to make something of itself. There is something to be said for a lot that Canada has been doing as far as our tech sector goes: we are sequencing the genome of the species that are indigenous to Canada, we are working on developing a high speed railway known as the hyperloop, we are offering grants to research in quantum computing, we are contributing to CERN’s work on particle acceleration, and tech stocks are booming. But the question is, could we be doing more and could we be doing this better? And the answer lies in the cities like Dubai and Singapore, that are doing more, that are doing it better, and in part because they have the strong political institutions and shared traditions required to maintain the kind of high security, high trust society that ultimately fosters innovation and intellectual development over atomized and individualistic indulgence and entitlement.
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