Grand Strategy in the Age of Mass Destruction


It Takes a Traitor (and a Misfit)
Commentary for 15 March 2015

By J.R. Nyquist

Back in 1996, First Lady Hillary Clinton published a book titled, It Takes a Village.  Given the political subculture of treason from which Clinton herself emerged, it might be more poignant to retitle the book, It Takes a Traitor. For this is our formative experience now. This is what our national education program signifies. At this moment, as we await the news from Moscow, with Putin and other principals disappearing at ten day intervals since the assassination of Boris Nemtsov, we have occasion to ask what nobody thinks to ask: how are the traitors in the United States psychologically linked to the ongoing misfits of today’s Moscow masquerade?

Recently the L.A. Times ran a story about the University of California at Irvine:  “Does UC Irvine hate the American Flag? Not exactly.” About ten days ago a resolution was adopted by the legislative council of the campus’s Associated Students to remove the American flag from the student government offices. “The American flag has been flown in instances of colonialism and imperialism,” said the resolution, which passed on a vote of 6—4. The Saturday after this vote, the university issued a formal statement saying that the legislative council was “misguided.” Many normal students were offended by the 6—4 decision, and protests erupted. Few of the protestors, however, saw the decision as originating in a deep-seated impulse toward treason. Few recognized the insidious psychopathology of the university’s student government. These were educated adults, admittedly young, but morally responsible for their actions in all other respects. What they expressed was not misguided, but anti-American. It was also crazy, and could not have been the decision of psychologically normal people. 

What this reveals about our universities is the operation of a pathological element. One need not ban the American flag from most of our campuses. It is more useful to deceive the world by allowing that flag to fly in a place where, all things being equal, its meaning and spirit has been abolished. In the Humanities and Social Science departments, where freedom of thought is of central importance, the American flag is more hated than loved by the faculty and the graduate students. I know this from firsthand because I was a graduate student at UC Irvine from 1986-1989. Professors there promoted Marxism, engaged in active recruitment of students amenable to Marxist ideas, and damaged the careers of those who were anti-Marxist. In those days it was done very quietly, administratively. If you dared speak up for America or economic freedom, you were persecuted. Your reputation was ruined. It is preferable to avert one’s eyes from such a situation, and very unpleasant to experience it directly; that is why those singled out for persecution were never defended. They were hung out to dry, and nobody dared interfere. Who, after all, wants trouble? This is the beauty of a quiet and selective intimidation. When I served as a Teaching Assistant at UCI, an oath of allegiance was required to the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of California. I took that oath and wondered how so many others could take this same oath, and then break it without any consequence; for the Marxism they so fondly promoted has always been inimical to “bourgeois constitutions” of the type we have in the United States and California. I asked two other graduate students, who were committed Leftists, how they could in good conscience have taken the oath. They both gave the same answer: “Oh, that oath is a joke.” And why should they have taken it seriously when nobody else did? Neither the administration nor the faculty enforced the oath, but all facilitated its abrogation – or looked the other way out of cowardice. If you want to know how our universities were captured by the enemies of America, this is the answer. More than likely, the vast majority of professors at UCI who are opposed to banning the American flag are only interested in preventing a wider scandal; for if the public looked into the matter, it would find that the university is one of many schools of treason. And the smart traitor knows how to hide behind the flag. To remove the flag would invite a closer look at what’s going on. Oh yes, it takes a traitor….

But who profits from this treason? Who harvests it? Which power intends to take America’s place by turning Americans against themselves? And here we are, again, back in Moscow – where a mysterious fleet of trucks came rolling into Red Square on Friday, 13 March. Putin has not appeared in public for ten days. Sergei Ivanov, Chief of the Presidential Administration of Russia, has not been (verifiably) sighted since 27 February. Sergei Stepashin, the Troubleshooter of the Empire, flew to the Urals some days ago on a pretext – yes, to those strategic mountains where so many underground cities and bunkers are located. Meanwhile, North Korea’s prime minister is said to have secretly arrived in Russia. And so, how do we interpret all this activity? Well, that fleet of mysterious trucks may be explained by the sudden erection of a giant platform in Red Square, with seating for hundreds of people. The planned event, of course, most probably is the first anniversary of the annexation of Crimea. This weekend the Russian public and press were told to expect an “important announcement” from the Kremlin. Perhaps the announcement came this evening, on Sunday, 10 pm Moscow time, in the form of a “bombshell” television documentary on which President Vladimir Putin depicted last year’s Ukrainian Revolution as a violent coup “masterminded by our American friends.” The Russian leader accused the United States of arming and training nationalist insurgents in western Ukraine, Poland and Lithuania. According to Putin there was good reason to fear an outright American attack on Russia. Sensible to the danger, Putin said he was prepared to arm Russia’s nuclear warheads.  

Of course, it is all lies. There was no American plot to arm Ukrainian revolutionaries. And there is no evidence that President Obama planned or authorized a coup attempt in Kiev. What happened in Ukraine was, by all appearances, a spontaneous event. Yes, the victorious Maidan demonstrators sought the advice of American officials. And yes, those officials stupidly inserted themselves in discussions regarding the formation of a new Ukrainian government. But in all this there was no American coup. Quite frankly, the government of the United States and the people of the United States are not particularly interested in Ukraine or Russia. Take it from one who writes on the subject – there is very little interest here. The consensus has long been that Russia doesn’t matter, and there is no real motivation for doing anything against Russia. Washington D.C. is preoccupied with other matters. And so, one might say to Vladimir Putin, “It’s not about you.”

As much as some of us would like to see more attention paid to the broken promises of the anti-Communist revolutions of 1989-91, we are realistic enough to know that the U.S. Government is not interested in provoking Russia. What we have is an appeasing kind of government, and a government that is locked on a path of unilateral disarmament. It is a government that would like to implement socialism in the United States, and is doing so at every opportunity. This being the truth of the matter, to accuse such a government of imperialistic designs on Ukraine – given the person of President Barack Obama – is simply incredible. By every outward appearance, Barack Obama hates American military power exactly as Putin does.  In respect of this, he has done more to undermine American power in six years than Putin has done in fourteen. The idea that Obama is fundamentally at odds with Moscow is belied by that very candid video footage, taken when the Russian and American presidents were talking during a nuclear security summit in 2012. “This is my last election,” said Obama. “After my election I have more flexibility.” The U.S. President reached over and put his arm on President Medvedev’s arm. Medvedev then replied, “I understand. I will transmit this information to Vladimir.”

Today Vladimir expects us to believe that Obama has been plotting Russia’s destruction. Yes, that same Obama who sent the bust of Churchill back to England; that same Obama who detests Netanyahu. Yes, that Obama – the flexible negotiator set to give Iran the bomb and whose goal is “zero nukes” for America. Oh yes, that’s the man who is plotting Russia’s destruction. And do not doubt that this incredible stupid lie will be widely believed because millions have heard that the American military-industrial complex is on the move. What these millions do not see, and may never see, is that every dictator blames his victim for what the dictator is about to do; even as Napoleon blamed England for wishing to dominate Europe; even as Hitler blamed the Jews for trying to provoke a Second World War; even as the Communists blamed the West for igniting the Cold War. Whatever the dictator says his victim is planning to do, totalitarian psychology suggests the dictator is planning to do it himself!

So it is a very bad sign when the Russian dictator, appearing on television, accuses America of trying to destroy Russia. Here he is rhetorically justifying future moves against America. From this point forward, whatever diversionary nonsense comes across your television screen, the real discourse will be about bunkers, warheads, and missiles. And so the traitors who wanted to remove the American flag from the UC Irvine campus may now be seen as an aftereffect of something that has already worked its magic, and has already largely disarmed the victim of a Russian tyrant who has publicly explained why it may be necessary to blow the United States off the map.

Even as this incredible stupid lie is believed, there will be pockets of unbelief – even whole continents of resistance! It is not possible, as Abe Lincoln warned, to “fool all of the people all of the time.” An incredible stupid lie, even dressed up in the fashion of a Sartor Resartus, by someone pretending to be Professor Diogenes Teufelsdröckh, would still be recognized as a lie (especially to those who retain their common sense). In 2009 Russian political “philosopher” and would-be Teufelsdröckh, Aleksandr Dugin, came out with a book titled The Fourth Political Theory. The book was clearly written for the purpose of justifying a future global war against the United States. Dugin is an outright representative of the Kremlin War Party. He is a vile and obnoxious individual, and last year a petition was circulated at Moscow State University which said, “We demand that Professor A.G. Dugin be dismissed from the faculty.” The petition was signed by over 10,000 students (may God bless them) before being sent to the MSU rector. The details of Dugin’s departure from MSU remain unclear, except that Dugin is no longer teaching there. This serves to illustrate, of course, that even in Russia normal people can prevail over a malignant misfit. There are good people in Russia, as there are good people in America, and these people have the same goals and aspirations (whatever Putin might say to the contrary).

At least for the moment, Dugin’s experiment has failed. His academically couched justifications for wiping out the United States have been shoved aside for Putin’s more practical, televised approach. Experts in propaganda have long understood that the public is suspicious of intricate arguments, intellectual proofs and scholarly asides. They want something straight from the heart. They prefer, above all, a performance before cameras. And Putin has delivered this performance. Who needs the intellectual argument when new lies are always being exchanged for old ones? It’s too much work to introduce the pretense of intellectual refinement into such a process. Furthermore, we must conclude that the Russian students of MSU – however patriotically inclined – know a villain when they see one. Their patriotism does not consist of a hydrogen bomb crashing down on Washington, D.C. As children of the post-Cold War, they view the world with normal eyes. The best of them know that America wishes them well – that America has no plan to destroy them. They know, of course, that nobody in America is preaching war. Nobody would become popular doing such a thing. Is this not a proof in itself? For our Dugins – our political psychopaths – are basically saying the same thing that Dugin has been saying; that is, by voting to ban the American flag from an American college campus they align themselves with Putin's academic pet. It’s really that simple. Nobody wants to bomb Russia in the United States because our political crazy people are on the same page as Russia’s crazy people. All these crazy people agree that the country marked for destruction is America, not Russia.

Has this been understood? Undoubtedly, it is the key to the whole thing.

Although America is a country with all the faults that attend a varied humanity, it is nonetheless a symbol of freedom. It is, more precisely, an experiment in freedom where an average person can live a decent life; where the voice of the political fanatic is muted, and the ideologue is distrusted; where even the demagogue must check himself, and make the customary bucolic sounds. The totalitarian misfit, seeking a more glorious existence, can find no sustenance in this kind of politics. If he runs for office, if he is elected, he is demeaned by critics and compelled by bribery. At best he can corrupt the constitutional mechanism in some small way, or he can promote some harmful legislation. But he cannot become dictator without exposing himself to arrest and prosecution. Power is not there to be had. Glory is not there. For the glory-seeking politician there is only final humiliation. Even the most promising presidential career, with high approval ratings, is finally blighted by a negative press. Clinton, Bush, Obama – all two-term presidents – ended their terms as lame ducks, finding themselves encircled by an ever tightening ring of criticism and scandal. Such a political system must appear a kind of prison to the totalitarian. Freedom for the rest of us is realized by humiliating our most powerful politicians. The people are free while the power-seeking class must live in a fishbowl. The Marxist, the Nazi, the fanatical Muslim, hate this sort of system and dream of breaking it to pieces. For all their ideology they are not about ideas. They are about power and being the center of attention. So it’s not surprising that misfits, here and in Russia, are on the same page. They all hate America. As Sam Vaknin wrote in his book, Malignant Self Love:

The narcissist is a human pendulum hanging by the thread of a false self. He swings between brutal and vicious abrasiveness and mellifluous, maudlin, and saccharine sentimentality. It is all a simulacrum, a verisimilitude, a facsimile: enough to fool the casual observer and to extract the coveted drug: other people’s attention, that reflection that somehow sustains his fragile mental house of cards....

The narcissist firmly, though counterfactually, perceives himself to be omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, brilliant, accomplished, irresistible, immune, and invincible. Any information to the contrary is filtered out, altered, or altogether discarded.

In truth, to call such a person a “misfit” is an understatement. The narcissist and the psychopath alternate between lashing out and a “pathological, all-consuming envy.” Deep within, the misfit hates himself and doubts his own worth. This helps explain his need for total power as a path to total and unobstructed self-affirmation. “Narcissists look for new victims for the same reason that tigers look for new prey: they are hungry, constantly starved for adoration, admiration, acceptance, approval,” wrote Vaknin. Political power, for such a person, acts as a salve. “Many narcissists end up being delusional, schizoid, or paranoid,” Vaknin added. And some Narcissists enter politics, join a totalitarian movement or a criminal gang – and become dictators. These are the biggest and most dangerous tigers of all.

So the misfit as totalitarian politician (Putin), being of the criminal type, finds intellectual flunkies (like Dugin) to invent vainglorious political theories (like the Fourth Political Theory), which are merely excuses for an attack on normal society, on freedom, on the wellbeing of average people everywhere. For this purpose, and with simplification in mind, America is their natural whipping boy, their intended victim, their object of envy and disdain, and the focus of their strategic malevolence. On Russian television, on this day, 15 March 2015, the evil dwarf-president, demonstrating his thermonuclear manhood by way of compensation, is merely another one of those damn fool misfits – like that scrappy little Stalin, or wee little Lenin. What is needed, perhaps, is a big strapping fellow to sweep this malignant race of dwarfs from the Russian stage. Perhaps Boris Nemtsov would have been that fellow, but Boris was gunned down on the street in Moscow. It is said that the assassin shot him four times in the back. The ultimate coward, of course, is not the one who shot an unarmed man in the back. The ultimate coward was, assuredly, that same totalitarian pygmy who was blaming America on Russian TV, and whose regime has overseen many political killings. It is sad that Putin’s cleverly staged absence pushed the fallen Nemtsov from public remembrance, placing the murderer center stage and, yes, Vladimir, it is all about you after all, isn’t it? Yes, oh yes. In America as well as in Russia, it takes a traitor and a misfit.