The coming dark ages

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I decided today, after one of my readers, John Harman, sent me a link to a very blunt but accurate piece describing the sad state of modern American culture, that it was necessary to explain why I had posted nothing here on Behind the Black on Thursday, even though I was home all day doing what I usually do, scanning the web for interesting stuff.

To begin, you might want to read the essay that John sent me, entitled Wimp Nation: Poised to Fall. It sums up the cultural situation quite nicely.

The United States has become a nation of weak, pampered, easily frightened, helpless milquetoasts who have never caught a fish, fired a gun, chopped a log, hitchhiked across the country, or been in a schoolyard fight. If their cat dies, they call a grief therapist. Everything frightens Americans.

Read it all.

You then might want to read this story about Hillary Clinton’s testimony and questioning on Thursday in front of the House Benghazi committee. Here too the author captures the sick intellectually dishonest nature of America’s political culture.

What we discovered is this: The White House and Clinton apparently knew that the Benghazi attack was the premeditated work of Islamic terrorists before the bodies were cold. She and the administration nevertheless proceeded to propagate a falsehood that advanced the president’s preferred political narrative just six weeks before a tightly-contested national election.

As I noted to John, Hillary Clinton’s testimony wasn’t news, it was a joke. What did we learn? She is a liar? That’s news? What was worse, as the author of the article noted, were the reporters willing to make believe this wasn’t so.

Then there are these two stories:

Both stories describe the culture on today’s American campuses, where it is clear that a large numbers of students, a majority in some cases, do not support free speech and are quite willing to squelch the free speech rights of others if it bothers them even slightly.

So, why did I not post on Thursday? Sadly, everything depressed me to the point that I just did not want to pass it on to anyone. I am someone who is hopeful, who believes in freedom, who is willing to fight to the death for the right of someone I disagree with to speak their minds.

Unfortunately, I come from a different age. The age we are entering is a new dark age, where knowledge and truth are not the goal, and keeping people silent and oppressed is the number one ideal. I find that a conclusion difficult to post about.


  • Mark

    A quote from HL Mencken’s essay on Education:

    “What would become of a nation in which all of the men were, at heart, Sunday school superintendents – or YMCA secretaries, or pedagogues. Imagine it in conflict with a nation of cowboys and ice-wagon drivers. Which would be the stronger, and which would be the more intelligent, resourceful, enterprising and courageous?”

    Right now the system is rigged by the oligarchs and their loyal servants to put the pedagogues and their ilk – other such spineless idiots – in positions of power and cultural influence. But there are plenty of cowboys and ice-wagon drivers left. Civil war is looming and if it does not come at the ballot box, it will come in the streets and the whole rotten edifice will come down in a bloody shambles.

    Why else would the so-called elite attack the first and second amendments so frantically?

  • TimArth

    I would add ‘change a tire’ to the list above. I am from a younger generation than Bob, but I agree just the same. As my very young kids (1.5, 3.5 & 6) grow older I am and will continue to do my best to teach them about hard work and responsibility – the same way my parents taught me.

  • danae

    I think the character of the citizenry may not be quite as degraded, overall, as outlined in the first piece. Traditional values and behaviors are still the standard in many areas of the country outside the academic, political, and media circles where most news is generated. But, the trend is not good; active resistance is necessary. We owe that to the Americans who’ll be here after we’re gone.

  • Robert

    Urbanism breeds weakness.

  • Secularization breeds aimlessness and despair.

  • Anonymous

    I don’t disagree, but there is something rather ironic about you being so depressed about Americans being wimps you couldn’t get yourself to post on a blog…

  • UrbanBard

    Consequences. Unlike the Life, Conservatives believe that there are consequences whenever you deny reality long enough. A financial crisis is just one. What the government does is distort the economy, government and society. The economy is loaded with unproductive companies which the consumer do not want. Thus, there are houses built which cannot be sold. There are product which can only be sold when they are subsidized. Those uneconomic productive goods have to sold at a severe discount and companies must fold.

    The government is overloaded with overpaid employees which must be laid off. The regulations must be ignore because the government is too bankrupt to enforce them. Social distortions must end because the government has the funds to finance them.

    What we have here is a house of cards. Nothing in America is real. But, reality will not forever denied. The national debt is $19.6 trillion. America’s unfunded promises are above $200 trillion. Does anyone think they will be paid?

    There are self reliant people in America, but they are unlikely to be in the cities controlled by the Left. The Red States are where the food and fuel are. What do the Blue States contribute? Entertainment, finance, welfare recipients, Leftist politicians, etc? What do conservatives need of them? Let them starve, freezing in the dark.

  • Lee Reynolds

    Those who are wrong will always seek to silence those they fear are right. This is one of the primary ways that you can judge a person’s integrity. Do they want to participate in a free marketplace of ideas through which the truth will ultimately emerge? Or do they want to shout down, silence, and punish any and all who would dare to challenge their preferred narrative?

    When trying to judge a person’s character and intentions, what they say is not nearly as illuminating as how they react to those who disagree with them.

  • cbpelto

    RE: The Functionality List

    I like the one Heinlein had:

    A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects. — Robert A. Heinlein

  • cbpelto

    Whereas Good can tolerate the existence of Evil. Evil cannot tolerate the existence of Good, as Good will continually be pointing out Evil’s faults. Therefore Evil must always try to destroy Good.

  • cbpelto

    Now to the right comment….

    Whereas Good can tolerate the existence of Evil. Evil cannot tolerate the existence of Good, as Good will continually be pointing out Evil’s faults. Therefore Evil must always try to destroy Good.

  • cbpelto

    Bummer. It went to the wrong comment….

  • If you have not read David Horowitz’ “Take no Prisoners,” I recommend it highly. Short, just 180 pages, but I had to read it several times to get his explanation of the Left through my head, and he knows whereof he writes. Raised as a red-diaper baby and a radical at Berkeley, editor of “Ramparts,” He changed his politics when the Black Panthers murdered his secretary.

  • cbpelto

    RE: Life Changing Events

    For the Progressive-Liberal, reality is not appreciated until someone puts a bullet in them or someone close to them.

    It’s part of their psychopathology…..

    It should be apparent by now that these social policies [of modern liberalism] and the passions that drive them contradict all that is rational in human relating, and they are therefore irrational in themselves. But the faulty conceptions that lie behind these passions cannot be viewed as mere cognitive slippage.

    The degree of modern liberalism’s irrationality far exceeds any misunderstanding that can be attributed to faulty fact gathering or logical error.

    Indeed, under careful scrutiny, liberalism’s distortions of the normal ability to reason can only be understood as the product of psychopathology.

    So extravagant are the patterns of thinking, emoting, behaving and relating that characterize the liberal mind that its relentless protests and demands become understandable only as disorders of the psyche. The modern liberal mind, its distorted perceptions and its destructive agenda are the product of disturbed personalities. — Lyle H. Rossiter, Jr. MD, The Liberal Mind: The Psychological Causes of Political Madness.

  • June Shelton

    I am so sick of this kind of rose colored glasses optimism. We need to network to build bunkers and an Underground for the upcoming collapse/takeover by the enemies of liberty.
    Seriously. It is way worse than you think.

  • Yeah, you’re right. Which is why I eventually did post this short essay. In the end I will not be silenced, and despite my disgust at the fascists who are prospering today I will continue to keep posting.

  • “Truth has nothing to do with it. You are a reporter? Criticize Israel and you lose your job.”

    I thought this was odd. Support Israel and you will lose your job is probably more likely.

    After all, they are buying guns almost as rapidly as Americans are doing.

  • Mikkidee


    We will be hunting ducks soon and you don’t want to give away the location of your blind before the first shots.

  • JohnMc

    Don’t despair. It only takes 10-15% of us knuckle dragging types to get the economy up again. The first growth industry will be mass burial after the fall. After that take your choices. Basic industries and local ag will be in demand. (Point of order: even without the fall AG is going to be a booming industry soon. The average age of a US farmer is in the low 60’s and another 2Bn people are going to need to be fed between now and 2050.)

  • Bob

    All true. And Occam’s Razor, dispensed with simple logic, explains 99% of EVERYTHING.

  • David Ferguson

    Yep! It also creates a vacuum into which Islam is drawn.

  • Doug

    Good for you, absolutely. Until, of course, they shut you down. It’s coming.

  • p38a

    Many of you seem to be falling into the liberal trap, the narrative of the MSM i.e. we are taking over, we are too powerful to resist… you have already lost. Despair! Fiddlesticks, as my grandmother used to say.

    Trump puts the lie to all the above in that his support shows that there are lots of Americans fed up with liberal bullying. Unfortunately even having that part right, Trump is an idiot. But the listen is there if someone with integrity and politically intelligent were to tell a different story about America and Americans.

    I fantasize having someone having the integrity during a “debate” to call Clinton out… “Shame on you for the lies you tell. Shame on you! Shame for seeking power at the expense of American lives and the American Republic. Tell, us have you not shamed yourself enough, have you not shamed the Republic enough by calling yourself an American? I wager that candidate would get every vote in the country outside of the delusional left.

  • Orthodoc

    Actually that’s where he lost me.

    You tout the virtues of toughness, resilience, and perseverance in the face of adversity, then crap on the one country that follows through on those virtues.

    Screw you and your latent anti-Semitism. Sorry if the Jews offend you by existing.

  • I single handedly resurrected a totally dead and disliked art: fugue writing. Some of my composition professors laughed at me when I said I wanted to do it, then they became vile to me and jealous of me when I did it. I belong in a conservatory. They don’t, and they know it. This was my protest. This was my, “reactionary tantrum” and, “musical archeology” expedition. Fortunately, I’m an honorable man with a brain – from a long line of honorable men with brains – so I had options outside of government or academia. I would hate to spend a career surrounded by those hateful poseurs.

    I’d write more, but it’s bow season and I’m on an awesome lease with ancient bucks. Enjoy a fugue on me. An homage to Bach’s late Art of Fugue style I composed as a doctoral candidate. It made one old leftard comp professor’s head explode – he interrupted a performance and went on a tirade against musical archeology – so, you’re welcome. He’s dead now. I’m okay with that.

    The so-called dark ages were a great time of musical development, BTW. Counterpoint started with Leoninus and his brilliant student Perotinus Magnus at Notre Dame around the eleven-hundreds.

  • Brendan

    Loved it. Wished you had done it in synthetic viola/violins and not as pure electronic.

  • Cotour

    In my most down days when it gets too much for me to comprehend and bear I shut it off. It does not go away but I allow myself the luxury and permission to not be concerned with it, for the day, for three days, in one extreme case I shut it all off for an entire month, music, reading and Youtube only, no news or politics. It was refreshing, then back to reality.

    Allow yourself to recharge, your no use to yourself or anyone else if you are depressed and not functional at your highest level. We will all be needed in the coming months to do our part to attempt to straighten some of this out. (If indeed in can be straightened out, what ever that may entail)

    And Left it may continue to slide, without any real consequences to suffer the public can remain complacent and be easily steered by the media and the leftist politicians that they promote. Remember, fear and dependency is the sharpest tool of the Leftist. The government, the FED, the media, has been able to shield the public (read lie) for the time being. And allowing time to pass when looking into the maw of destruction / change can tend to help resolve the things that need to be resolved. And I have to believe that that fear of real destruction has all politicians unwilling to rock the boat.

    But rocking of the boat there must be!

  • Leah Murdoch

    We did teach our boys this and had them in boy scouts to introduce them to the outdoors. They still grew up to be online gamers who ask our permission for everything.

  • Frank

    I’m entirely sympathetic to your point of view (first visit, BTW), but not nearly so depressed as you claim to be. There is a lot of pushback going on. I work with a whole bunch of women (nurses) for example, most very young, but none is a feminist in the postmodern sense. In this new war on Western culture it’s 1942. My advice? Keep calm and carry on. They will lose because they are weak; they’re only demanding we be as weak as they. Rather, we must be just, be patient, and be ruthless.

  • Mark

    Thanks for the advice. I was in an intemperate mood. As Fluellen said to Gower: “I will speak lower.”

  • Mark

    Actually – I believe Gower said it to Fluellen.

  • Steve

    Great post. Connected via

    We can all do something. Take action. real men need to stand up and make a difference. I have started to a class in my home every other week. A couple of us curmudgeons do a class with some young men in their early 20s. We are covering manly topics. How to be a gentleman, history lessons, how to be prepared with stuff in your car, how to change a tire, teaching things just not covered anymore, or missed while getting a participant trophy in soccer!

    Take action! this is small, but my little attempt to affect the long term outcome.

  • Cotour

    And lets face it, when you have someone like this twice elected by the people of this country to the presidency who wouldn’t be depressed?

    But this too will end in 380 days, but like any well trained Marxist I suspect that the fanning will continue into his retirement.

  • a6z

    Right. Civil war. Which side are the armed forces of the United States going to be on?

  • a6z

    Well, they contribute votes. To the party of the government which (a) extracts taxes and (b) commands the armed forces of the United States. Game it out in your mind.

  • ShadowTheBanned

    I bet the Palestinians would shown some toughness, resilience, and perseverance if they were the ones getting 100 billion dollars of US foreign and military “aid” over the years.

  • H. Combs

    The Gods of the copybook headings will not be denied.

  • Orson

    “a6z” – Dear Leader certainly hopes to have that question decided on His terms before His Time is up.

  • Orson

    danae – you write “active resistance is necessary. We owe that” to our posterity…. Hmmm. Where have I heard that BEFORE, huh?

    And committees of coded correspondence, methinks.
    (Or else the Great God Surveillance State shall hoover them all away, like a planet’s air in “Spaceballs.”)

  • Orson

    SHOUTING is Obama’s buds favorite tool, going by their web-sites.

  • Orson

    Frank advises that “we must be just, be patient, and be ruthless.” I’ll believe that we are when a candidate says, since a nuclear armed ME is inevitable, we shall nuke Mecca or the equivalent elsewhere if we (or our friends) are nuked.

    Thinking about the unthinkable, saying the “unsayable,” and debating our enemies must become the ruthless norm, or we are finished.

  • cbpelto

    RE: Clinton and Obama Elected Twice

    Ever people gets the governance they deserve.

    I thank the vaunted American public education system which stopped teaching History and Civics back in the 80s. After Carter instituted the so-called Department of Education. They’ve given US a generation of dumbed-down voters. Ready to be tools of any unscrupulous political movement.

    Education makes a people easy to lead, but difficult to drive. Easy to govern, but impossible to enslave. – Lord Henry Brougham

    This people is ready to be enslaved….

  • Mike

    Don’t denigrate soccer for it is the ultimate thinking man’s sport. That’s why Lionel Messi is the best player and Germany is the best National team. It has very little to do with how you’re born.

  • jay

    The 1st wave of feminists are just are bad:

    Among the videos you will find the white-feather campaign by suffragettes:

    It already is about going against the complementary nature of women and men when it was proposed.

  • Edward


    On days like that, please remember your own post and Klavan’s advice: “What ever you do, don’t ‘shut up.’”

    You have advised me to not lose heart, and I am belatedly returning that same advice.

  • Ronald

    I’m prepared to defend myself from policeman, Muslims, nasty neighbors, my crazy Uncle Nuncio, blacks, evangelicals, classmates I never liked, vets with PTSS, aggressive homeless people, poor drivers, rude grocery baggers, unannounced jehovah witnesses, Mormons , Atheists, Republicans, Democrats, Socials, illegals immigrants, first generation Americans, Bush haters , Obama haters, Hillary haters , Trump lovers, anyone who glares at me, and any other asshole who has got to nerve to knock on my door or approach me on the street for directions. You can’t tread on me! I’m a God fearing, red-blooded , plain talk’n, country love’n, gun tote’n, flag wave’n , beer drink’n, lane-changing, obese Captain America.

    America needs therapy.

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