Bloody shovel

We shall drown, and nobody will save us

Where did the Samurais go?

tl;dr: They were killed by their women.

There’s been news of a very rare occurrence in Japan. A bombing. In a provincial city, at that. Utsunomiya, a town nobody knows about and nobody should really know about. Nothing going on there.

This week though, there was a big bombing. 1 dead, 3 injured. A car exploded in some park.


The media and the Internet were all talking about it. Terrorism! Must be, right?

Wait, terrorism? In Utsunomiya? No way. No fucking way. Of course it’s not terrorism. So what is it? Who did this?

This guy:


And who is this guy? A Samurai. A pissed off Samurai.

An old Samurai too. Retired. 72 year old ex officer of the Self Defence Forces. He had worked his whole life for the defense of his country. Alas, his country didn’t pay back the favor.

Kurihara Toshimasa had a schizophrenic daughter. She was going insane all the time at home, making a mess of herself and everything around her. He tried to control her anyway he thought of; to no avail. Eventually he forced her into an asylum.

His wife though had other ideas. A local cult sold her that her daughter wasn’t ill, she was just possessed or something, and they had this magic potions and rituals and stuff that could cure her of those possessions. The wife ate the whole thing up; eventually spent 500k dollars in whatever scam the cult came up with. The totality of Mr. Kurihara’s savings. A lifetime of savings. Including the retirement allowance that the army had given him. All gone.

Well eventually an argument ensued. The wife responded by suing our samurai for domestic violence. Everytime her daughter went batshit and he came to physically restrain her? Domestic violence. Sending her to the asylum against her schizophrenic will? Domestic violence. Arguing with the wife about money? Domestic violence. Evidence? None. The wife’s word.

Thing is our samurai was a bit old fashioned. He didn’t lawyer up. Why would I need a laywer? I’m in the right. Surely our legal system will recognize there is no evidence against me. Oh man. The judges gave his cultish wife everything she wanted. Divorce. Money. Property. Even the car. All to her. Our Samurai protested. “My wife tried to kill me. She assaulted me with a knife! Surely I had to restrain her”. The judges laughed. “Well if you had died we’d recognize that”.

Our Samurai had lost everything. His family. His property. His dignity. What could he do? It’s not like he didn’t defend himself. He run a Twitter account blogging about his trial. He started a blog. He went every day on 2ch (like reddit, sorta) trying to gain sympathy and attention. It didn’t work. Nothing work. Modern society is not kind to a samurai. It is however very kind to women. Even insane women.

And so he decided. He had lost everything. He was not allowed to live like a man. Then he will die like a man. On the morning of the 23th of October, he burnt down his (now his wive’s) house. 20 minutes later he sat on his car, and made it explode. His wife wanted the house and the car. Well, she won’t have them. That’s the least he could do.

People talk a lot about what a bunch of sexless wimps the modern Japanese have become.

Now you know why. Humans are rational. Everything is rational. Gnon is always there.

Correspondence Notice

I got a couple of emails yesterday, which I answered today. But the emails were returned by my email service saying that “Gmail has flagged our emails as spam and rejected them”.

I’m sorry about that but I’m not going to change my email address right now. I don’t know if this problem will continue for long, but in any case you can also reach me by not using Google, or through my account.

The balance of the natural and social world

Apparently I missed this kind post by Jim where he calls me clever but pessimistic. Guilty as charged. I agree with his point though. Irrational optimism works. I’m just not very good at it. Which is why I’ve been reading and writing on how to generate it exogenously, i.e. for people like me.

The discussion there at Jim is uncharacteristically good. The main issue people ask is that you can’t just make up a new religion. That’s a good point. It’s also a bummer, given that my shtick for 5 years has been that We Need a New Religion (see 1, 2, 3, 4, 5). But once you understand what religion is about, what it is for, it’s obvious that you can’t just make one up from thin air. Any coordination mechanism for groups, any set of ideas to generate loyalty is more likely to work if it feeds upon previous ideas which are out there, preferably for a long time. If only to make people not feel inadequate about their past ideological stances. If you want Christians to join your group you should make them feel good about having been a Christian; at least parts of it. Ever read the Quran? The writer was very, very familiar with Christianity and Judaism. Christianity was of course also based on Judaism. And Judaism on ages old tribal traditions of the Hebrew tribes. Hardly any religion has ever been produced ex-nihilo. Japan tried to make a religion out of the (purported) tribal traditions of the Japanese people but they just couldn’t beat up centuries of Buddhist faith.

It follows that the solution would be to come up with a slightly modified version of Christianity. It would make it easier to get our natural allies on the right side of the Christian community to join the institution of a reactionary society. The problem is, as many correctly argue on the comments at Jim’s, that Christianity is a leftist cult. The teachings of Jesus are pure and simple leftist agitation. The rich go to hell. The poor will inherit the earth. Prostitutes are as noble as any of you. If some white guy wrote a Medium long-form post talking on his experiences touching and healing lepers we would all call him a holier-than-thou virtue signaller.

Many argue that the teachings of the Church (whichever you fancy) are distinct from those of Jesus alone, and we just need to follow those instead of just reading the bible. And there’s a point to that; but the teachings of the Church aren’t particularly reactionary either. They haven’t been for ages. There’s plenty of exhortations to respect women and give to the poor and be a general Nice Guy. A guy like Donald Trump using his fame to grab hot pussy would have been busted in any Christian community in any time and space. Christianity just doesn’t do that. It’s a nice cult. The Romans knew that: plenty of Roman writers wrote about these meek Christians who sold feminism to their women, messing with good old classical mores.

So yeah, Christianity is leftist by nature. At least leftist indeed to not be very conducive to a hard move to the right as the West is sorely in need of. But… Christianity did beat the Romans, didn’t it? And it’s had a pretty impressive track record at least until 1965. Plenty of Christians do remind us that Christianity is the West, and we can’t save one without the other. They have a point. What made Christianity so successful?

Well first of all Christianity wasn’t successful everywhere. It certainly was in Europe. But not in the Middle East. Islam surely beat it there. And the few Christian communities that remained since antiquity until the 2003 Iraq War weren’t anything to call home about.

It seems to me that Christianity as a mildly leftist, i.e. socialist and feminist cult, it had an important role to play in the ancient and medieval world. Especially the medieval world, where barbarians roamed Europe at will. The world of a barbarian is the complete opposite of a modern one. Barbarians are manly. Very much so. There’s this Jack Donovan guy pulling a Yukio Mishima and translating his gayness into poetry about how cool the barbarian Way of Man is, how awesome are the men it produces. Which it is. We all love Conan. It’s cool. It looks like tons of fun.

It’s still messed up in many ways. In modern parlance, the barbarian world is a world of toxic masculinity. It’s a world where men do whatever the hell they want. In my parlance, it’s a world of bro signalling spirals. Which is a lot of fun for men. But it produces pretty crappy societies. It’s stupidly violent. It despises menial, boring work. It despises family life for the pursuit of vainglory and pussy. It’s nasty, brutish and short. That’s what you get when men do what their feel like.

In that kind of world, having Christian institutions trying to get men to stop hunting for a while and just fucking till the land and feeding their children, is actually a pretty good idea. Shaming a man to sticking with his ugly and nagging wife even though she’s a total bitch is a pretty good idea if you want children to survive and food surplus to get grown. Getting elite men to not shoot each other over stupid slights, to not drink too much and moderate their appetites, to don’t spend their inheritance in women and parties… was pretty much hopeless for the most part. But to the extent it succeeded it had a civilizing effect.

So to speak in modern terms, if you have a society which is, due to its historical background or its technological level, naturally shifted to the right, having a pole of lefty ideas produces a pretty healthy balance, one where men get a bit of what they want, women get a bit of what they want, and we’re all better off thanks to it.

That’s obviously not what we got today. The situation in 2016 is one where feminism is the law of the land, men doing what men do by nature (cf. Trump) is illegal and strictly punished, and every single institution with some power just pushes the same leftist ideas. Women are better, open borders is good, everybody has the right to organize and fight for their selfish interests except white men. In this circumstances if we want to restore some balance, if we want civilization to work, we need the complete opposite of what Christianity was. We need a big fat magnet of rightist ideas, a rightist pole to exert the same influence on our feminized society that Christianity had on the manly society of the Middle Ages.

It seems to me that Christianity can’t possibly be that. What could be? Your guess is as good as mine. If you’ve been reading this blog you probably know one answer. But again I like it as little as you do. For all purposes I’m still for a New Religion.

The Loudspeaker

Well it’s been a while since I wrote a post. I apologize, but I have been busy, and everybody’s attention is on the American election, Trump or not Trump. That is the question. Quite predictably the Cathedral has focused all its resources in fighting Trump with every tactic on the books, and then some. Twitter is banning thousands of people, every single newspaper in the US has openly abandoned any pretence of unbiased reporting. Some people on the left have hinted that democracy may not be such a good idea, given that someone like Trump could possibly win.

I like the train of thought; but they’ve managed to probably knock Trump out of the race. How? With a tape where he spoke like 80% of men do in a normal country. Where he talked about pussy and how much he likes it. That is the true fault line of Western politics. Feminism is the strongest Schelling Point of the progressive system, the indestructible idea that will bury us all. Again Houellebecq is provided right all along.

Anyway, let me do what I do best and introduce a funny story I saw in a Chinese website. It’s unrelated only if you want it to.

I was born and raised in a small village in Henan, in central China. In some of the neighboring villages there are some Muslims (the Hui people, Chinese-speaking Muslims), and since I was a kid the adults in the village always told us kids the we should never go to Muslim villages, as the Muslims liked to beat up Han-Chinese kids. I was a small child and didn’t really understand what that was all about.

I remember when I was in first grade, in the spring, I went to the hills to get some edible wild herbs (when I was a kid I loved eating wild herbs with noodles), and I bumped into a Muslim herding his sheep into the wheat fields of our family. His sheep were eating up all our wheat! I was furious, I went up there to tell him to stop, but the Muslim herder beat me up very hard. Then he just said he was going to get his sheep to eat all our wheat, and that if I tried to stop them again he’d bring his buddies from his village and would beat up our whole family.

I went back home and told my parents. They were really scared, they didn’t dare go confront the Muslim herder. I asked my parents: “why are we so scared of the Muslims?”. My father answered: “Because when a Muslim gets into a fight with a Han, he goes into his mosque, the imam from the mosque then grabs the loudspeaker in the mosque and calls up all the Muslim men in the village to go beat us up. We have few men in our family, we can’t possibly beat them in a fight. So all we can do is give up and let their sheep eat up our wheat.”

I remember that this kind of things happened quite often in the village, and it often ended in Muslims and Han fighting. But most often it was the Han who lost, because they had less men to call up for help.

Real News and Fake News

Look at this page:

Two important pieces of news here.

One is that the Austrian presidential elections have been postponed. These elections are the repetition of the elections done in May. Why are they repeating them? Because of massive electoral fraud. Electoral fraud done to give the election to a leftist candidate, against an anti-immigrant rightist one.

This sounds trivial but it’s the first time in… a 100 years? That fraud is a thing in European elections. This is how bad things have got.

And they’re worse still, as the elections are being postponed because of tampering with postal votes! This is how bad things have got. If something happens to democracy it won’t be because of the persuasive powers of reactionary writers. It’ll be because the left realizes it’s not in its interest anymore. Kinda like the fall of the Soviet Union.

This other piece of news is also interesting. Stop your Ad-blocker for a minute and look at the bottom right corner.


In this world of today, where all print media is effectively bankrupt, and surviving only due to public subsidies or the whims of billionaires, Reuters is still honest enough to relegate its sponsored content, i.e. it’s corporate propaganda to a small corner of its website. But look at the first article. Climate change is the biggest single threat facing the world economy. That seems like a fairly normal headline, doesn’t it? I’ve seen that on actual newspapers all the time. But we of course know what the deal was all along. Now Reuters is nice enough to make it explicit. Sponsored Content. Of course it is.

Your Last Chance

I don’t usually just link to other people’s articles; but when I do, you better go read the whole thing.

Some snippets:

But let us back up. One of the paradoxes—there are so many—of conservative thought over the last decade at least is the unwillingness even to entertain the possibility that America and the West are on a trajectory toward something very bad.


If conservatives are right about the importance of virtue, morality, religious faith, stability, character and so on in the individual; if they are right about sexual morality or what came to be termed “family values”; if they are right about the importance of education to inculcate good character and to teach the fundamentals that have defined knowledge in the West for millennia; if they are right about societal norms and public order; if they are right about the centrality of initiative, enterprise, industry, and thrift to a sound economy and a healthy society; if they are right about the soul-sapping effects of paternalistic Big Government and its cannibalization of civil society and religious institutions; if they are right about the necessity of a strong defense and prudent statesmanship in the international sphere—if they are right about the importance of all this to national health and even survival, then they must believe—mustn’t they?—that we are headed off a cliff.


Let’s be very blunt here: if you genuinely think things can go on with no fundamental change needed, then you have implicitly admitted that conservatism is wrong. Wrong philosophically, wrong on human nature, wrong on the nature of politics, and wrong in its policy prescriptions. Because, first, few of those prescriptions are in force today. Second, of the ones that are, the left is busy undoing them, often with conservative assistance. And, third, the whole trend of the West is ever-leftward, ever further away from what we all understand as conservatism.


(…)the deck is stacked overwhelmingly against us. I will mention but three ways. First, the opinion-making elements—the universities and the media above all—are wholly corrupt and wholly opposed to everything we want, and increasingly even to our existence. (What else are the wars on “cis-genderism”—formerly known as “nature”—and on the supposed “white privilege” of broke hillbillies really about?) If it hadn’t been abundantly clear for the last 50 years, the campaign of 2015-2016 must surely have made it evident to even the meanest capacities that the intelligentsia—including all the organs through which it broadcasts its propaganda—is overwhelmingly partisan and biased. Against this onslaught, “conservative” media is a nullity, barely a whisper. It cannot be heard above the blaring of what has been aptly called “The Megaphone.”

Who is this guy, and why is he not my best friend?

The Great Ming Emperor Admonishes his Troops about Women

So some people are saying I’m just some rootless cosmopolitan who speaks Chinese. How can I be alt-right?

此言差矣. It doesn’t work like that. I have insight precisely because I’ve been around, and I’ve read around. Let me prove my alt-right bona-fides by quoting Zhu Yuanzhang, the great founder of the Ming Dynasty, the Empire of Brightness.

Zhu Yuanzhang is the greatest rags-to-riches story in the history of mankind. He was some minor son of a landless peasant, born during the period of Mongol rule in China. Mongol government in China was quite horrible; infrastructure decayed, bandits were everywhere, and all manner of natural disasters happened all the time. One of those disasters killed our hero’s whole family. Starvation. Every single one of them. Our hero had to go to the closest Buddhist temple to beg for some food; and all he got was an old wooden pan, and an order to beat the crap out of the temple and beg some food outside. Which he did for years. Beg for food. Around the country. For years. Until he met some band of bandits. Heaven had it so that his best childhood friend was a bandit chief; so he soon joined them. Our hero then slowly but steadily climbed the bandit meritocracy ladder; next thing you know he is leading the best rebel army in China, expels the Mongols to the steppe and reunifies All Under Heaven.

There’s something to say for the tradition, the slow accumulation of knowledge in society. But some things just don’t require an education. Just razor-sharp smarts. And industrial amounts of cruelty. And Zhu Yuanzhang had those. He was an illiterate beggar, and yet he built and commanded the armies that beat the Mongols and founded the Ming Dynasty. Not unlike Genghis Khan; he also didn’t need to go to school to command the best run armies in the history of mankind. Politics really isn’t that hard.

Anyway, one of the most fun things of the founder of the Ming is that he was illiterate. Which in China is a problem, as elite people were supposed to be able to write in Classical Chinese, which is kinda like Latin in the West. Obviously he couldn’t do that, so many of his edicts are written in plain vernacular language. So he would sent imperial decrees to his troops saying “grab those damn Japanese pirates and slit their fucking throats on the spot. This is My Command”. He was very fond of sending commands, edicts and decrees to the whole country. China is a big country; and the guy, for all his illiteracy, had many ideas. He had built and run the army who conquered the country. Surely running the country in peace couldn’t be that hard? All you need is order and discipline. And he knew something about that.

Anyway, this is one small snippet of his views on women and sexual propriety:


Which translates as:

There must be a separation between men and women. Women must be always inside the house, must not be allowed to come outside. If they go out of the home revealing their head or their face, that will inevitably result in lewdness and debauchery. But these days there are some stupid men and stupid women who can’t reason properly and make a mess of proper morality.

See for example this the Commander of Qujing, this Niu Lin guy. While he was in Yunnan he got some woman as a concubine, and when he went to drink with his comrades, he would take her to drink with them! So of course she ended up being seduced by another commander called Liu Ying, who then had her poison her husband Niu Lin.

Just how dumb was this guy? He brought his wife to drink with other men, drunk for a while, next thing you know he got killed. If he had kept a proper separation between men and women, nothing like this could have happened. I had Liu Ying and that woman killed. If something like this ever happens again, they’ll get the same treatment.


The Alt-Right

So… Hillary Clinton just gave the alt-right the public spotlight. People are Googling like crazy, and people like Richard Spencer are gloating like they haven’t in years.

By the way, Richard if you’re still in Japan by all means give me a call. I could use some hairstyling advice from you. I’m sure he’s getting Japanese groupies just by standing out there in Tokyo looking good and white. He should do some activism while he’s there.

Anyway, so the alt-right is trending, and I guess I should say something. Am I alt-right? Of course I am. Why? Because I say so. I’ve been writing about how language works. Words exist to be useful. What’s the point of having the word “alt-right”? To make friends among fellow dissenters from the progressive mainstream. So yeah, I’m alt-right. I also want a wall. And I could use more readers.

I’m probably the most disagreeable alt-right out there, in that my specialty is pointing out how every single political idea out there is either stupid or impractical, and I use profuse examples from ancient and modern history to make the point. Recently I’ve been pointing out why political ideas are either stupid impractical, and why they still keep coming up because the point of having political ideas is not their brilliance or practicality, but just to get some status points in ad-hoc local signaling games.

But hey, don’t let me discourage you. Because I’m also the guy with the best theory about what the alt-right is about, why it happened, why it’s getting bigger, and why it isn’t going anywhere. Unless the solution we don’t want happens. Or the dysgenic trends just keep going on forever.

So this was my clumsy attempt to catch some of the spotlight that Hillary Clinton was so nice to give us. Oh, by the way, I also have the best theory about what the Clintons are about.

I should get myself a fancy brand. The Philosopher of the Alt-Right. Or maybe something more specific. The Schopenhauer of the Alt-Right. Suggestions are welcome.


Correct Naming

Master Xun (荀子 Xunzi):


Which translates as:

The people can easily be unified by means of the Way, but one should not try to share one’s reasons with them. Hence, the enlightened lord controls them with his power, guides them with the Way, moves them with his orders, arrays them with his judgments, and restrains them with his punishments. Thus, his people’s transformation by the Way is spirit-like [i.e. religious]. What need has he for demonstrations and persuasions? Nowadays the sage kings have all passed away, the whole world is in chaos, and depraved teachings are arising. The gentleman has no power to control people, no punishments to restrain them, and so he engages in demonstrations and persuasions.

When objects are not understood, then one engages in naming. When the naming is not understood, then one tries to procure agreement. When the agreement is not understood, then one engages in persuasion. When the persuasion is not understood, then one engages in demonstration. Thus, procuring agreement, naming, demonstration, and persuasion are some of the greatest forms of useful activity, and are the beginning of kingly works.

When a name is heard and the corresponding object is understood, this is usefulness in names. When they are accumulated and form a pattern, this is beauty in names. When one obtains both their usefulness and beauty, this is called understanding names. Names are the means by which one arranges and accumulates objects. Sentences combine the names of different objects so as to discuss a single idea.

Persuasion and demonstration use fixed names of objects so as to make clear the proper  ways for acting and remaining still. Procuring agreement and naming are the functions of demonstration and persuasion. Demonstration and persuasion are the heart’s way of representing the Way. The heart is the craftsman and overseer of the Way. The Way is the warp and pattern of good order. When the heart fits with the Way, when one’s persuasions fit with one’s heart, when one’s words fit one’s persuasions, then one will name things correctly and procure agreement, will base oneself on the true disposition of things and make them understood, will discriminate among things without going to excess, and will extend by analogy the categories of things without violating them. When listening to cases, one will accord with good form. When engaging in demonstration, one will cover thoroughly all the reasons. One will use the true Way to discriminate what is vile just like drawing out the carpenter’s line in order to grasp what is curved and what is straight. Thus, deviant sayings will not be able to cause disorder, and the hundred schools will have nowhere to hide.

One kind of person is brilliant enough to listen to all cases, but has no combative or arrogant countenance. He has generosity enough to extend to all sides, but does not make a display of his virtue in his appearance. If his persuasions are successful, then all under Heaven is set right. If his persuasions are not successful, then he makes clear his way but lives in obscurity—such are the persuasions and demonstrations of the sage. The Odes says:

Full of refinement and nobility,
Like a jade tablet or scepter is he,
So lovely to hear and lovely to see.
The contented and tranquil gentleman
Serves as a model universally.
This expresses my meaning.

Translation from Eric Hutton’s Xunzi. Pretty good translation, I must say.

And yes, Classical Chinese writing really is that short.

The Will To Not Power

I’ve written extensively about monarchy. And for good reason. We’re all here in great part because we share our criticism, or at least disillusion about democracy. Some critics of democracy come from the long reactionary tradition, going back to the De Maistre and the opponents and the French Revolution. But most of it today, at least on this corners of the internet, derives from libertarians figuring it out that democracy isn’t quite conducive to liberty. Certainly not in a theoretical way. Hans Herman Hoppe put it best, wrote a whole book about it, saying that if economic theory made any sense, monarchy was the best system of government. Moldbug run his whole blog on that. He used to troll Larry Auster in that the modern world suffers from “chronic kinglessness”, then went away praising Henry VII Tudor.

My answer to that is that if you know your history you know that monarchy doesn’t work like Filmer or Hobbes said it did. The theory was good; but an absolute ruler is just that, a theory. In practice power gets exercised by the people who seek power. And a king won’t necessarily seek power. He may be a shy man; or a dissolute hedonist. Or have a strong mother who won’t let him. Or have powerful ministers who craftly dodge his attempts at exercising him his royal prerogative. Modern governments are a mess. Old royal courts were also a big mess. And it’s all written down.

Still, some people keep on not getting the joke. Mostly because they don’t want to get the joke. It’s convenient for them to keep on theorizing in how awesome monarchy is. Filmer and Hobbes were amongst those. The modern Japanese right is also like that.

As I said the modern Japanese right has been organizing for some time around the need to reform the Constitution. Or more frankly, to scrap the present one and come up with a new one. They just won the election and they’re getting to it, but they’ve been planning for some time. In 2012 the LDP, the perennial ruling party, or more specifically the right wing of the LDP, announced their draft for a new constitution. It scraps article 9, which forbids Japan from (nominally) having military forces. And it changes article 1. Article 1 right now says:

Article 1. The Emperor shall be the symbol of the State and of the unity of the People, deriving his position from the will of the people with whom resides sovereign power.

And this they want to change into:

Article 1. The Emperor is the head of the State and shall be the symbol of the State and of the unity of the people, deriving his position from the will of the people with whom resides sovereign power.

You can see the total list of changes here, in very good English.

So anyway, the change isn’t very big. But the whole thing of the “head of state” has the internet right, which like the Western alt-right but 100 times bigger, very excited with talk of having a proper monarch and all that. And all that’s very cool, but they seem to have forgotten to actually ask the emperor. And he’s not playing ball.

In July 13, the whole country was startled when the public broadcaster, NHK, announced that the emperor had the intention of “abdicating”. The wording was pretty ominous, “生前退位”, “abdicating in life”, but the actual wording is “giving away the throne”. The proper wording would be 譲位 “passing the throne to”. The wording kinda meant the emperor was abolishing the institution. That mostly was just a careless journalist not knowing his imperial vocabulary, but still. The very fact of rumors coming out of the imperial household was completely unheard of. And to make it worse, later in the very same day, the Imperial Household Agency, the government bureaucrats who run the palace, denied the whole thing. Nothing to see here!

So not only rumors were coming out of the imperial palace; but there were conflicting rumors. That’s even worse. Something was seriously amiss here. But for weeks nothing happened. Until last week, the Emperor gave a press conference.

First of all, the Emperor is not supposed to do that! He shouldn’t be talking to the people besides any predetermined royal business of his. But he had something to say, and he said it. And what did he say? That he’s old, that he’s busy, that there’s a lot of stuff to do, he’s not able to do it, so he thinks it better if he leaves the throne so that the tasks of the emperor don’t suffer.

The whole thing was weird. Weird in the eyes of monarchists. The Emperor is the royal person. He can do what he wants. He’s not a bureaucrats with tasks to do. That’s secondary. But the Emperor doesn’t see it that way. He mentioned the word “symbol” 8 times. Because that’s his job under the current constitution, to be the “symbol of the nation”. Apparently he feels very strongly about his job as a symbol, and wants someone to do it if he’s unable to. But that’s not the idea of the monarch that people have these days. He’s to be the head of state! The symbol thing is just some word. But he doesn’t see it like that. He feels he has a job. He feels like the right wants to change his job. And he surely doesn’t want to do it. He doesn’t even want to be there when the whole thing happens.

The left has rushed to argue that this is the Emperor’s way of protesting against the rightist shift. And they have a point. Imperial sovereignty in pre-war Japan led to the military declaring war to the whole world in the Name of the Emperor. And the Showa Emperor, Hirohito, the present emperor’s father, grew to resent that. When the famous Yasukuni shrine went fascist and declared that the war criminals punished by the US in the Tokyo trials were also enshrined there, the Emperor never again visited the shrine. His son, the present Emperor, has never gone himself. The Imperial Household is not amused by rightist nostalgia of pre-war Japan. They are in the left.

And if the present emperor is in the left, you haven’t seen his son. The crown prince, Naruhito, is married to a Foreign office bureaucrat, who is always sick, unable to do her princess duties, unless she has to go to Europe. Then she’s always healthy and stays long periods of time shopping in Paris. She hates the imperial bureaucracy, and they hate her back. And the crown prince is fully on her side. He has protested several times on how the imperial bureaucracy treats women badly. You know where this goes.

And, to make matters funnier, the crown prince has one only child. A daughter. Which under the present imperial household regulations, can’t inherit the throne. There was some attempt at reforming that, and allowing a future empress. But then the crown prince’s brother had a baby boy, and he became the next in line. But once the crown prince becomes the Emperor, he will most certainly push to reform the law to get his daughter on the throne some day. And he will have the full support of all the Japanese left.

So you have a monarchist right, which dreams of traditional monarchy, fighting a leftist royal house who wants nothing to do with it. They want to be fancy bureaucrats on a salary doing a “symbol” job. But the right doesn’t care. Their monarchism isn’t about the monarch. It’s just some convenient Schelling Point they got to make friends amongst themselves and sell bullshit to the populace. Which is what politicians do.

And you could say that of any political idea. The content is secondary. The consequences are completely besides the point. What counts is what works in the political arena. What gets retweeted. What gets you votes. How ideas develop depends on that, not in actual internal logic or likely consequences.