Mencius - Confucian philosopher...
and Mencius Moldbug... separated at birth?
I realise that it was as long ago as June 2007 that I first heard of Mencius Moldbug - now self-unmasked as Curtis Yarvin. As can be seen from the link, I heard of him from being a regular reader of the libertarian economics blog of Arnold Kling - and that in itself shows the scale of change that I have undergone in the past 11 years.
In June 2007 I was myself a libertarian-conservative, an atheist (with post-modern New Age leanings) - and my philosophy of life was a kind of utilitarian hedonism based on an application of natural selection theory to human affairs. In other words I was unusual, extreme, a trouble-maker... but still very much within the socio-political-ideological mainstream.
Like most such people, my main concern was that the others of my ilk were always selling-out: and I mean always! For example, I once spent a morning 'advising' Boris Johnson at the House of Commons - and it became clear that while he expressed all the right ideas, he never actually did any of them. The behaviour of economists, libertarians, democracy advocates and indeed the entire mainstream during and after the 2008 (fake) 'economic crisis' made this baked-in corruption clear and certain.
What I first realised from Mencius M. was that this was in the very nature of the supposed-Right in a democracy - such aspects were constitutive of the very system, and would never change for so long as the system remained - and furthermore the system was very resilient.
While I was reading and commenting on Moldbug's weekly 10,000 word essays, and exchanging e-mails with Curtis Y, I began to become a Christian. Along with MM I began to realise that demotivation was perhaps the deepest problem for those opposed to The Left. The mass of Leftists were also demotivated but this mattered little since their strategy was destructive; and destroying is easy, opportunistic, does not need to be strategic; while a credible Right would need to be strategic, consistent, and disciplined.
In retrospect, I think my conversion to Christianity was tainted by these political insights and attitudes, in the sense that I saw the alternative to as lying between Eastern Islam and Western Christianity; and therefore looked to Christianity to provide Western social cohesion. This, in turn, meant that I was drawn to the Episcopal, catholic Christian churches (and, for similar reasons, Mormonism) - and the first couple of years after I became a Christian (around 2008-9) those were the avenues I tended to explore. Although I was also drawn to Conservative Evangelical churches on the basis that they obviously did an much better job at attracting and motivating young people - which seemed to be essential.
By this time, I had 'parted company' with Moldbug. Although he too was obviously interested in the tough, traditionalist Christian churches (such as the Roman Catholic SSPX, and the Church of England under the Stuart monarchs) - he retained his focus on secular politics-economics - and (incoherently with his other views) began elaborating (to quote TS Eliot) a system so perfect that Men would not need to be good - this error was picked-up and run-with by the Neoreactionary movement.
I don't know whether Mencius Moldbug's blog was decisive to me - probably not - but it was certainly helpful in actually breaking, permanently, my by-then-brittle faith in libertarian, centre-right economics as the basis for human society.
For which I am grateful.