I am struck again and again by the fact that people who are famous, or notorious, for their extreme, wild, no-hold-barred radicalism; invariably take the Establishment line when it comes to the Litmus Test issues.
This is the phenomenon sometimes called controlled opposition; although that term in misleading, since these radicals are not externally-'controlled' so much as self-controlled (both by personal disposition and by incentives).
Yesterday I was reading about a typical phenomenon of this sort called 'chaos magic' - which was/is a self-styled radical, extreme, no-holds-barred (i.e. encouraging drugs and sex) group of magic practitioners; who were almost unknown to the mainstream public*, but who hold a kind of fascination and glamour for mainstream writers and commenters on the occult.
(*The well-known comic book author Grant Morrison is perhaps the most famous chaos magician.)
I discovered a blog maintained by one of the leaders and founders of these chaos magicians and - sure enough - this wild radical had made sure to include Establishment-approved, mass-media-harmonious, utterly-mainstream, virtue-signaling stuff about the current major Litmus Test: the Fire Nation war...
In other words; there is an implicit deal between the radicals and the Establishment.
Radicals are allowed to be wild and extreme about anything... that does not matter for the Establishment.
(Especially those things of which the Establishment covertly approves - e.g. any non-procreative sex/uality that tends to destroy real marriage and the family.)
And if radicals stick to this kind of radicalism, their transgressive (and often illegal) behaviours are tolerated; and individuals may also reap the rewards of that kind of fame called 'notoriety'. For instance, notoriety may lead to greater sexual opportunities.
But radicals must support those strategic issues that really matter to the Establishment.
And radicals - just like everyone else - must track any changes in these core policies, and hold fast to the Establishment's current line; even though this will be incoherent, self-contradictory, and in opposition to the radicals own espoused principles.
That is the implicit deal.
The Establishment say, in effect: Do whatever you like and we will leave you alone; except for the Litmus Test issues - about which you must follow the guidance of mainstream media and totalitarian officialdom.
Why do radicals go along with this? After all, if they really were radical and anti-Establishment - as they affect and often believe-themselves to be - they would rebel against the need to take the approved, conventional, mass mainstream views on exactly the most dominant and important issues of the time.
They would surely insist on dissenting from exactly "whatever 'everybody' (all 'decent' people) is being compelled to believe (- or else!)".
And when the current narrative is solidly, monolithically, espoused by all government ministers (even when led by a 'Conservative' government), when it is espoused by all senior spokesmen for industry and finance, by all major bureaucrats and officials (and even by school teachers!). When the narrative is espoused by the entirety of the mainstream mass media... And when this standard-approved-narrative is actively enforced by explicit censorship...
Well, it would seem as obvious as anything ever could be, that any radical worth-his-salt would automatically oppose any such Conventional Collusion.
But in practice; they do Not oppose, but instead support. And indeed there is seldom evidence even of any desire to dissent from the terms of what they must do in terms of 'the deal'.
This is because radicalism is very seldom sincere or deeply motivated; but most often a pose (an excuse/ rationalization/ disguise) adopted as a means to some other end - often of a sexual nature.
Therefore - to return to the 'chaos magic' people, or their spiritual mentor Aleister Crowley - we encounter the claim to be using sex and drugs as a means to the end of more powerful magic; whereas it seems clear (from revealed preferences) that the truth is the opposite: such magical rituals were/are a means to the end of sex and drugs.
Such false consciousness permeates the entirety of radicalism - and indeed nearly-all of mainstream intellectual discourse; which is why the nature and focus of radicalism moves like a weather-vane in response to changes in Establishment strategy, when it comes to the core (Litmus Test) issues.
We see this by the Establishment onslaught unleashed on once-approved radicals whenever they publicly dissent from any of the Litmus Test issues of the day.
Such individuals may be 99% Establishment-approved in their views - but when one-percent contradicts a Litmus Test question (e.g. the transagenda, antiracism, CO2 global warming, Fire Nation war etc) , then the individual may have have his income and reputation rapidly destroyed.
Such disgraced radicals are very seldom on the side of Good. Usually they are 99% evil-aligned; but they cannot be allowed to oppose Establishment core values and still retain their status and influence.
They have made a deal with the devil; and have reneged on their side of the agreement. Obvously they must be socially-annihilated pour encourager les autres.
Luckily for the Tame Radicals; they seldom care enough about their radicalism enough to get into hot water by transgressing on these restricted areas. They self-police quite spontaneously, often unconsciously; because in their hearts 'extreme' radicals serve the same master as does the Establishment.