"Wherefore We must interrupt a silence which it would be criminal to prolong, that We may point out...as they really are, men who are badly disguised." Pope St. Pius X, September 8, 1907, Pascendi Dominici Gregis

Monday, January 23, 2017

What Does it Mean, "Actual Anarchy"?

To the Catholic mind, the title of this blog will sound a discord; to the libertarian, perfect harmony. But it is not only the enemies of truth that can use a dialectic approach to reach a higher plain of understanding, for we intend here to synthesize points of view stereotypically seen to be in opposition. Indeed the processes that are forming the world around us are always ultimately up for grabs to both the defenders and enemies of truth, as both Austrian methodological individualism and Catholic theological free-will tell us.

To any Catholic, who is Catholic not only for the last 60 years, but the last 2016 years, there can be no other conclusion reached in the pontificate of Pope Francis than the Church herself is in a state of actual anarchy. Indeed, the highest earthly authority of the Church is engaged in a dialogue - yes, indeed his own dialectic downwardly spiraling - with, let us strive to retain charity here - semi-heretical notions such as vaguely calling into question the sanctity of our Lord and suggesting that what are abominations in the eyes of God are actually authentic relationships, as if the Author of all life is not the Authenticator of His own creation. Meanwhile, those attempting to adhere in good-faith to the deposit of the faith, including sedevacantists, SSPX proper, SSPX qua resistance, FSSP, diocesan, or other, as is seen in this very act of listing, find themselves without the unity consonant to upholding tradition. Particular questions pertaining to liturgy - yes the actual liturgy of the Church, not the novo-litrugy - and authority go unanswered, and as in times of previous uncertainty as to the state of true papal authority, Catholics of good-faith are left to their own consciences, unable to submit to a Peter who has seemingly joined the Sanhedrin.

But while this out-and-out disintegration of authority has only relatively recently grown to such proportions inside the Church, it has been so for Western society much longer. Indeed for too many people there is no question of what the Church has to say about a particular matter. This is no more apparent than in the rise of classical liberalism, or what is today known as libertarianism. For while the supreme moral authority of the Church no longer captures of the minds of our leading intellectuals (and here I am referring to actual intellectuals, not mere actors on TV news), the Word, the Logos, yea, the logic which God spoke into existence still resides, to a certain extent, in the minds of thinking men such as Ludwig von Mises, Murray Rothbard, and the Austrian economists of today. It is the very structure of reality that informs us that "men act," for any attempted refutation must prove the very point.

Libertarianism seems to promise 'our cake and eat it too,' retaining the free-market, private property order that is the only system fully consummate with human flourishing, while emptying it of many of the moral prohibitions of the Catholic Church. This apparently allows a mind comfortable with the liberal tone of the modern West to retain enough of reality's structure to maintain a functional materialistic existence. Actual anarchy - life without the state - to this line of thought, becomes the summit of man's moral and philosophical development, the desired end-goal of man's political development. And while much material advancement, beauty, self-fulfillment and even moral clarity can be had in pursuing our self-interest as in a Randian novel, there always remains the notion posited by Hayek that human beings cannot be omniscient and we have a tendency therefore to define our self-interest too narrowly. It is notable that none of the 'heroes' of the Randian ethos have any children.

Yet, to the better libertarians' credit, no utopia is promised. In fact, libertarianism's most realistic proponents sustain that there will always be evil men. And so, we ought not empower the very institution most often made use of by the evil sociopath throughout human history, the state. It is as Augustine said, 'There are pirates and emperors, but they're really the same thing.' It is as Satan said, taking Jesus to the top of the mountain and showing him all the kingdoms of the world, 'These all belong to me.'

During the eclipse of the Church, we have witnessed the more perfect refinement of the truly Scholastic, natural law economic and political proscription. The synthesis, bringing the Church and the market back together, will be seen in two ways, a triumph of 'thick' libertarianism in which it is widely recognized that the thin variant opens the door to a 'freedom' devoid of character, so perverse that man begins to undermine his very existence by using his materialistic accompaniments to destroy what it means to be man; also, God himself may intervene with a chastisement akin to that of the tower of Babel, as is promised in the third secret of Fatima to halt what is perverse in man's materialistic trajectory and re-establish a just world order founded upon Catholicism.

The meaning of "actual anarchy" is thus determined by the context in which it is used. The Catholic Church seems to experience it in an illegitimate sense today, wherein the governing structures of the Church are not fully functional and Her enemies run rampant. Informed by Austrian economic analysis, libertarianism aims to actualize a social order in which the Weberian state, and surely the superstates being pieced together from these, is supplanted by a system fully coextensive to human freedom and natural law, properly understood. If humanity is to progress, the Church herself will become the fullest champion of the more recent advancements of natural law philosophy applied to economics, retaining the remainder of the moral structure She has carried forward for two millennia. It cannot be any more certain the path available for Christendom's restoration, than to see that Her enemies hard at work building a Satanic world government. This new world order is a world without the rule of God. The only alternative is to strive for a world without the rule of Satan. Which anarchy will we actualize?

Of course, a traditional Catholic knows the proper reference point, and so the question really is, how much actual anarchy will we endure until God's order is brought to summation? That again is determined by the extent to which each one of us cooperates with our creator. May the Actual Anarchy blog help you to avoid its namesake. Let us turn back to the only source of true order, Him whose rule is the definition of all things. Yes, we must strive against the "order" of Satan, which is really no order at all. And in doing so, we very well will see the perverse totalitarianism of sin supplanted slowly but surely by the peace, tranquility and total Christian freedom of God's natural order, an order so perfect there is no question of its enforcement because it is clearly in the self-interest of all to conform to the dictates of their own creator, an order so perfect we couldn't help but fulfill it if we could see things as God sees them. Alas, we cannot, without the eyes of Faith, Hope and Charity. Which way actual anarchy?

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