The Corner

Heisman Reconsidered

The cursory account of Mitchell Heisman’s 1,905-page suicide note in my September Diary drew the following thoughtful response from a reader more diligent and better-read than I am.

1. Agreed — he is indeed an uneven writer.

2. He has an obsession with the Norman-Anglo-Saxon relationship. Some of it is interesting, some of it is badly sourced, and he is way too long-winded about it. But he probably has a point about the genesis of the British class system.

3. He is not PC. His talk about “viviocentrism” is disconnected from egalitarianism, and seems to be an adaption of PC-speak to a nihilist terminology. Seems logical — remember your Rose four stage model of nihilism: Liberalism→Realism→Vitalism→The Nihilism of Destruction.**  Liberalism is but an early stage of nihilism — that the lingo is portable across stages should not be surprising. See his take on multiculturalism, p. 1,497 ff.

4. He is fully non-PC on issues of human biodiversity (Race, IQ, Race and IQ, feminism: “Herein lays the general truth of female equality: females can aspire to be the equivalent of emasculated men …” — p. 962, and a variety of other topics).

5. His discussion of Jewish intellectual history is pretty good. Example:

“The proto-egalitarian aspects of Judaism’s social ethics were adaptive for Jews during their normative historical condition as an oppressed people. However, when Jews achieve power themselves, to be self-consistent in the sense of wishing the relatively powerless (i.e. Palestinians or Nazis) to gain power and triumph over Jewish power amounts to a death wish. From this experience comes Jewish self-consciousness of the relativity of Jewish ethics. To fully persist with these ethics in conditions of political power is the definition of political suicide.”

Overall, I have found it a worthwhile read so far, despite some flaws in language and style. It might be worth another look sometime — after all, the man died (after) writing it.

** I reckon this is where Heisman ended up at last.

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