Reviewbrah represents a new abstraction level in aristocracy.
In the beginning, there were conquerors and conquered. The conquerors could own property by “right of conquest”—this could be called “barbarian mindset”. The conquered had whatever they were allowed to have, and that was the best case. As Captain Jack Sparrow said, the only rules in the wild are what a man can do and what he can’t do. But there’s military utility in internal peace, so eventually the conquerors and conquered settled into a social dominance hierarchy. Rather than killing over every little slight, the property-owning aristocrats only demanded obeisance and “taxes” (i.e. protection money).
But because they recognized that this arrangement could easily make them weak, the aristocrats cultivated what I’ll call “samurai mindset”. This is an abstraction step up from the Genghis Khan-style barbarian mindset, which says a man who can’t defend his property will have it taken away by upstarts, and deserve it. A samurai, or what NRx calls a “stationary bandit” (vs. a “rootless bandit”), needs a different organizing principle because there will be many small compromises, in comparison with the uncompromising Khan. For example, a samurai will hesitate to strike off the head of his master swordsmith.
This being the case, he must train his mind to be able and willing to do so without hesitation, even as he restrains his impulsivity, or else become civilized and soft. Hence, he cultivates an air of unconcern for material things, only considering the pragmatism of killing the master swordsmith as compared to the dishonor of letting him live and make great swords for conquering neighbor groups. Similarly, he makes up for the difference in fighting experience between himself and a proper barbarian through training and mental rehearsal of life and death situations. Rather than fighting to the death with someone new every day (which would leave him with no peasants, and open him up to attacks from people with high group cohesion bearing swords made by master smiths) and obtaining confidence and amused mastery through experience, he imagines being killed in battle over and over. This is meant to produce the same relaxation as the amused mastery of a 20-year barbarian.
The next abstraction level up is probably best exemplified by the European aristocracy.
So rather than “barbarian mindset” or “samurai mindset”, we’ll call this one “aristocrat mindset”. It’s best exemplified by a story which I can’t properly credit.
One time, an American soldier from Kansas went to fight in Korea. He says he was in the middle of battle one time, bullets whipping through the air around him, and he stumbles into the Glaucestershire officers’ mess tent. Inside, as occasional bullets are piercing the canvas, the officers are eating a full roast beef dinner in their mess dress uniforms (which is the military equivalent of a tuxedo). Presumably, their conversation was not much removed from what they would have been having around a dinner table back home. And afterward it’s likely they would be having a spot of brandy or somesuch. The key to understanding this odd behavior, for country bumpkins like myself, is to understand this is an extension of Samurai Mindset. It stands to reason that, to an aristocrat, the ability to enjoy a formal dinner on the battlefield is proof that they *deserve* to enjoy a formal dinner in peacetime.
This is the concept of a stationary bandit as practiced by someone who has become mobile again but is not precisely a “mobile” bandit. Rather than fighting over actual property, the aristocrat is claiming a more abstract ownership of everything in the immediate area. It’s a sort of “mobile property” rather than the mobile banditry of the more primitive barbarian. And that abstract ownership is asserted on the basis of being such a glorious asshole, who cares so little about life and death, that they’d eat a roast beef dinner while being shot at like a duelist patiently waiting his turn to fire. It also serves as a pretty effective signal to reinforce the social dominance hierarchy without violence, because who wants to fight with someone that crazy? But that’s incidental. The true purpose is to enjoy the benefits of one’s property as is “proper” (notice the common root word) to one’s elevated station.
This etymological connection between propriety and property hints at the next level up: Reviewbrah mindset. Reviewbrah mindset is an abstraction of propriety from the battleground to a world of cultural warfare, where there is no distinction between war and peace or homefront and battlefront, the war is all-encompassing, and the collateral damage is the social institutions themselves. BiceBiceBice had a post recently where a man was reading James Comey’s book to his “furbaby” cat and said he couldn’t tell if this was a right-wing troll, left-wing propaganda, or just normie degeneracy. This illustrates the fact that in a culture war, culture itself is the casualty. We live in a shithole because all memes become real over time, and the best memes are shitty. Cultural warriors have to become shitty people in effect, and in the long run this is not different from becoming a shitty person in reality. It’s like how the best soldier, fighting monsters, will become a monster (this is the point of Apocalypse Now).
Now, Temple Grandin’s fifth rule for people living in a world without access to conventional social rules (autists and aspies) is “Being Polite is Appropriate in Any Situation”. (Excellent book btw.) I like to think of this as being tantamount to living in a fairy tale world. In this case, the rules are chaotic. Despite the lack of rules, there are some good guidelines for surviving a fairy tale. E.g. Never lie, but don’t tell the whole truth either. One of these guidelines is to observe propriety to a fault.
And this finally brings us back to Reviewbrah. Here is a natural-born aristocrat who found himself in a shitty world full of shitty people, who realized that it was never about the roast beef and the brandy. The battlefield is everywhere so there is no roast beef. He realized that the property was about the spirit of propriety itself, moreso than the reality of it. Thus, he attained a new level of self-ownership which puts any barbarian or samurai or duke to shame. This is a man who stumbled into Faerie, in the middle of a battleground between cosmic forces beyond the understanding of any chaos magician, who put on his full mess dress and a paper Burger King hat and ate a whopper with the dignity of a king eating a roast beef dinner.
That, my niggers, is Frame.