President Biden’s Inaugural Address placed considerable emphasis on the need for national unity. This of course means universal obedience and submission to the doctrines and dictates of the Biden administration. Unity cannot be willed. It either exists in fact or is simulated out of fear. We may be able to create propitious conditions for unity by renouncing vilification of those with whom we disagree, but President Biden’s declaration of war on the bogey of “white supremacy” suggests that this is not on the menu.
The sociologist Durkheim said that unity comes in two modes. He used the word “solidarity,” but this meant the same thing as unity. You can have “mechanical solidarity,” which is a unity of sentiment, or “organic solidarity,” which is a unity of interests. A high-school pep rally builds mechanical solidarity by persuading five hundred chanting teenagers that there is something really special about being a Fighting Bulldog from Thurgood Marshall High School. A meeting of Mafiosi builds “organic solidarity” by persuading twenty-five greaseballs that strict omertá means none of them gets the chair.
Durkheim maintained that mechanical solidarity was primitive and organic solidarity was the coming thing. Applied to national unity, this meant that nations would look less and less like churches, and more and more like corporations. In fact, the nation state would eventually become what the political theorist Phillip Bobbitt calls a “market state” in which the social ties are purely transactional. The nation works together as a team in global economic competition, but this team is like a professional football team of athletic mercenaries, and not like the spirited Fighting Bulldogs from Thurgood Marshall High School.
In other words, organic national unity pays but it has no heart.
Durkheim’s dualism of mechanical and organic solidarity is built on the older concepts of Gemeinschaft and Gesellschaft, typically translated as community and society. Gemeinschaft is a human community unified by matters of the heart. Its members have a common culture, a common religion, common memories, and common ancestors. And as a consequence they feel that they are one people. Gesellschaft is a human community unified by rational efficiency and enlightened self-interest. Every Gesellschaft is just like a professional football team. You play for the best outfit that will have you, and you never forget that sentimentality is bad for your career.
The problem for President Biden’s program of national unity is that the U.S.A. has no Gemeinschaft—no community of the heart—and Gesellschaft only works for the “organs” that benefit from the organization. Saying “we are all Americans” does not make it true, even if your voice cracks and you do that crinkly I’m-not-being-a-phony thing with your eyes when you say it. Being multicultural means having no community of the heart. In fact, as we all know, it means relentlessly reviling, destroying and mocking the symbols of the old community of the heart, along with all the vile “white supremacists” who still feel a lingering affection for them.
That is, after all, what “white supremacy” and “whiteness” now mean. They mean lingering affection for the Old America. Lingering, not kindling.
When I say that Gesellschaft only works for the “organs” that benefit from the organization, I mean organic solidarity stops when the paychecks stop. There are no patriots in a market state because loyalty is reciprocal and the market state has no loyalty. A market state naturally destroys loyalty because loyalty is inefficient. Everyone in a market state is a mercenary, and mercenaries only fight when they are paid.
Gemeinschaft unity takes time, a lot of time. It is like the stew you make in a crockpot, not like the popcorn you make in a microwave. Our perfidious elite dumped out the crockpot and destroyed Gemeinschaft unity when they made the U.S.A. into a post-Christian, multicultural, majority minority country that is ridden with historical guilt. Gesellschaft unity takes money, a lot of money. And our perfidious elite has decided to keep most of the money for themselves. Oh, they will give a little to President Biden to say “we are all Americans” with a crack in his voice and that crinkly I’m-not-being-a-phony thing in his eyes.
Unity cannot be willed. It either exists in fact or is simulated out of fear. Since it cannot exist for us in fact, and the President and his paymasters require that we show it, we will have to simulate unity out of fear.
Hail! I Say, Hail! to the Chief.