Given that I voted for Trump in 2016, it may seem odd that I would be voting for someone other than the God-Emperor in 2020.
Actually, given my general movement away from politics and declining interest in all things political, it may seem odd that I’m bothering to vote at all.
But I supported Invictus well before I knew the man personally. In fact, as early as January of 2016, I said that I would have supported Augustus over Trump:
I do not agree with Trump on everything. I think his support for the bail-outs was a bad idea. I think his tolerance of the Patriot Act is awful. But I won’t agree with any politician on everything, save maybe Augustus Invictus…
So why support this strange, goat-killing, pagan Floridian for president?
I must begin by explaining why I began ignoring politics in the first place.
The more I have explored philosophy, the more clear it has become to me that repetition makes habit, and that what we repeatedly think, say, pay attention to, etc, forges our character. Most people understand this in the abstract, but do not apply it, or think about all of the places in which this principle must apply.
In contemporary American politics, dishonesty is taken to levels that are difficult for ordinary, honest people to comprehend. Candidates regularly hide their own views and claim support for policies in order to attract votes, sometimes reversing opinions later, or sometimes seeming to accept these views more or less permanently (unless it suddenly loses its public viability). Bills and policies are often named in manners which conceal or even contradict their content–the “Patriot Act” being an obvious example. Just keeping track of what is going on is a challenge, because everyone is trying to conceal everything, either by not revealing information, or by hiding it in meaningless and generic PR-speak.
There is really no way to go far enough down this political rabbit-hole to understand anything without the dishonest nature of politics beginning to change you.
How this happens probably varies from person to person, but for me, it began when I started trying to look at things through a political lens. I might say to myself “what so-and-so said was meaningless or wrong, but I can see the rhetorical value in saying that…” In a country of 330 million people spread out over 3.8 million square miles, there are almost no issues that are unifying, in positions a particular issue, or the importance of that issue. Deception, misrepresentation, and meaningless platitudes are necessary for the acquisition and retention of political power, and no one can support a winning candidate without tacitly supporting this dishonest political game.
Perhaps even worse than supporting a winning candidate is supporting a losing candidate, one who “plays fair,” with the hope that the good guy might win. This naive approach misunderstands the nature of the game and the incentives which drive it. It is worse because the moral loser does not even understand what is going on, and buys the lies he is sold. The ignorant hero who charges into an invincible position isn’t courageous. He is simply stupid. He does not understand what is going on, and he buys the lies that are sold to him. This was the Republican party under neo-conservative influence, and it was why conservatives kept losing… until they finally figured it out and went with Donald Trump.
Trump is not an escape from this bullshit game. He’s just a really good player, one who ostensibly supports “your” side.
But “his” side is still — fundamentally — the game. He wasn’t always a politician, but he was always a showman, in business and in reality television. There is almost zero informational content in his words, which is probably why his tweets and speeches are so politically effective. The relationship between political success and direct and honest speech is inverse.
Enter our hero: Augustus Sol Invictus — antithesis to the PR game of contemporary politics, and open about his own beliefs to such a degree that almost no one can listen to everything without finding at least something to cringe at.
Here’s the thing: that point — cringing at something that someone believes — would be true of everyone if they were to reveal their true beliefs openly. With enough demographic groups holding competing and mutually exclusive beliefs and values, the only way to appear “reasonable” to even a small majority would be to keep silent about your own beliefs and values, or else just lick your finger, put it to the wind, and lie like a whore.
Donald Trump is not more reasonable or more sane than Augustus Invictus. Neither is Hillary Clinton. Both of them are probably sociopathic, and the latter seems to have no moral compass whatsoever, while the former is a sort of impulsive amnesiac who cannot speak.
Does this mean that Augustus Invictus cannot win then? Am I just being a sucker?
I don’t think so.
In the same way that America was ready for a right-wing candidate to play ball with the left (and so it elected Donald Trump), I think America is almost ready for sincere candidates again. I say almost, because I fear Augustus may be a few years early, but I am hopeful that I may be wrong. It’s close.
Only the hopelessly naive or stupid believe that politicians — left or right — are trustworthy. Only a decade or two ago, a respectable and intelligent person might trust their senator or their president, but today, the game is too well-understood. The internet has spread the knowledge of its trade-techniques (“political science”), and there is all kind of analysis of the various players and their skill in the game. To care about policy, rather than body language, eye contact, and Twitter charisma, is to doom yourself to hair-ripping frustration and total irrelevance. That’s not the game everyone else is playing.
But with this sudden awareness multiplied exponentially by Donald Trump’s success, I think that a sizeable number of Americans are — or will soon be — looking for a candidate who isn’t in the game. For someone who is direct, who is sincere, who is authentic, even at personal cost. And for people who are sick of lies, the authenticity of character is far more important even than policy.
It just happens to be a benefit that Invictus’s policy positions are exceptionally reasonable — anti-interventionism, anti-drug-war, anti-internationalist, and generally right-wing libertarian positions. But to focus on this is to miss the point. No matter what values or policies you care about, you will never get what you want if politicians are permitted to lie and deceive the public. They will tell you that they are this or that, because their polling experts told them that you value those things. They will say all the right words, and then do whatever they want to do, continuing to give lip-service to your values as needed, if needed. Often, they will even do the opposite of what they promised.
For maintaining your own character, and for achieving desired aims, there is no political path forward without first re-establishing and enforcing honesty, authenticity, and integrity in the political domain.
You might “win” with a Trump, or some even more insane leftist like Kamala Harris. But “you” didn’t win. “Your” party won, but “your” party may or may not do what you want them to do, because they don’t actually care about you. They probably even hate you, or look down on you as a gullible tool, because that is what you are to them.
As far as I can tell, there are two candidates who are not like this.
One is Bernie Sanders. Despite not being a prominent senator, his directness, and even craziness on certain issues (such as the belief that global warming causes terrorism) speaks to an authenticity of character that was attractive enough that the establishment had to kill his campaign to keep Hillary ahead of him. Some pollsters even think that had he been the candidate in 2016, Trump may have lost.
The other is Augustus Invictus.
The problem with Bernie, of course, is that his actual policies are bad. He is an unapologetic socialist, supports firearm restrictions and large-scale immigration, and he holds typically progressive positions on feminism, structural racism, etc. He is, in short, a political enemy.
But his authenticity (or appearance of authenticity) attracted millions.
There is no reason Invictus could not match Bernie’s relative success.
As stated before, it is possible that Invictus has come too soon, that America is not quite ready. But it could be. Were it not for Augustus’ candidacy, I would not be voting at all in 2020, despite the schadenfreude courtesy of our current troll-in-chief. The amusement of Trump stirring the leftist pot is that same kind of spiritual trap, drawing us into inauthentic and deceptive rabbit-holes of rhetoric for the purpose of other people gaining political power. It would be better to simply ignore it all.
But with Augustus Invictus, we have a serious candidate — one who is bizarre by the standard of politicians, but authentic and honest. One who, if elected, would get us out of foreign meddling, would fix our immigration problems, and go after the international financiers and lobbyists who have caused most of these issues to begin with, while protecting American Constitutional protections like firearm ownership and free speech, which are presently under attack. One who would not give a damn what globalists and communists might think.
We should not be naive: his odds of winning are slim. He has a very steep uphill battle just to be recognized as a candidate, and things will only heat up from there. But it is possible. If America is ready, if those who believe in the cause of America, of liberty, and the Anglo-tradition on which these were based support him in his efforts, if the stars align just right, then perhaps we will see a new God Emperor ascend the throne in 2020.
I have written essays related to this subject on The Revolutionary Conservative, which has since become Augustus Invictus’ official website:
And, for those of a more intellectual bent, I debated Augustus on the subject of Theodore Kaczynski. The video can be seen here.