A Brief Defense Of The Hereditarian Caste System
Returning to the topic of Indo-European mythology, there are two distinct ways that Indo-European societies organize themselves. The first is by means of caste, which Georges Dumézil defines as an order built on the concept of function. He argues that the Proto-Indo-Europeans organized themselves into three groups, the famous trifunctional hypothesis of Priests, Warriors, and Laborers, and that this caste system evolved into the various manifestations we see from India to Ireland. While there were numerous permutations of this system, each changing in some way the specific character of the castes, the same foundational rules applied across the board, namely that society should be divided along the lines of the function men play in the maintenance of order.
The alternative method of organizing society, also indigenous to Indo-European societies, is the class system which dominated the post-Medieval world. The major distinction between class and caste is that class system organizes people by socio-economic status rather than social function. What one does in society does not matter in a class system. What matters is the amount of wealth and status you can accrue from your function. Members of the upper class can be politicians, businessmen, or generals, but these roles are insignificant to the class system. It is certainly true that upper-caste members tend to be wealthier than lower-caste members in traditional economies, but the material differences are incidental to the caste system and central to a class system.
In Dumézil’s Mitra-Varuna and his two volume work on Ancient Roman religion, the author shows the conflict which emerged in the Roman Republic when the class system began to eclipse and replace the ancient religious caste system. Like most European religions, especially among the Germanic peoples, the priestly caste was largely absorbed into the warrior caste and retained only ritualistic significance, which Dumézil traces in the various priesthoods of the Monarchy and Republican period. What distinguished the Romans was the rise of a system where men were divided into socio-economic classes, such as the Senatores, Equites, Proletarii, and so forth. While there were hereditary roots to these classes, after the Republican period they were primarily economic, as the poet Juvenal tells us:
Would you not like to fill up a whole note-book [of satirical writings] at the street crossings when you see a forger borne along upon the necks of six porters, and exposed to view on this side and on that in his almost naked litter, and reminding you of the lounging Maecenas: one who by help of a scrap of paper and a moistened seal has converted himself into a fine and wealthy gentleman? Satire 1
Juvenal’s complaint should sound familiar to modern ears: unscrupulous foreigners who lacked any respect for the Roman virtues or laws usurped the positions of power, authority, and wealth from the native Roman population. The openness of the Roman system, which transitioned toward the class structure after the Servile Wars in order to permit qualified plebians to serve in high military office, allowed the complete disenfranchisement of the Romans themselves.
when a guttersnipe of the Nile like Crispinus -a slave-born denizen of Canopus -hitches a Tyrian cloak on to his shoulder, whilst on his sweating finger he airs a summer ring of gold, unable to endure the weight of a heavier gem-it is hard not to write satire. For who can be so tolerant of this monstrous city, who so iron of soul, as to contain himself when the brand-new litter of lawyer Matho comes along, filled with his huge self; after him one who has informed against his noble patron and will soon despoil our pillaged nobility of what remains to them-one whom Massa dreads, whom Carus propitiates by a bribe, and to whom Thymele was made over by the terrified Latinus; when you are thrust on one side by men who earn legacies by nightly performances, and are raised to heaven by that now royal road to high preferment-the favours of an aged and wealthy woman? Satire 1
As hard as it is to tear ourselves away from the masterful writing of Juvenal, let us return to the point; the openness of a class system, which reduces all social order to that of wealth and popularity (to which Juvenal has more to say, but I’ll desist), creates the opportunity for the erosion of social values and cultural goods by removing one of the core limits on superbia, the overweening ambition of the opportunist.
The rise of the low-caste man to a position of absolute power is bad enough, as history has demonstrated, but the greater danger is that such a society is a magnet for every two-bit con man and grifter across the globe. People with no attachment to the land, culture, or society can use class systems to free-ride on the cultural and social capital of a well-ordered society until even the greatest community is brought down under the overwhelming weight of parasitism. Rome became that magnet, attracting the scum of every corner of the Mediterranean to pull down the greatest civilization before our own. When wealth alone determines social status, anyone willing to violate the norms and unspoken rules governing society can elevate themselves, because when their actions transform society into a cesspit of corruption and despair, they can simply pick up again and move on to the next target. The weight of social disapproval, which ensures a functional society’s consuetudines et usus, the unwritten customs, values, norms, and beliefs which undergird social order and protect against anti-social disruption, does not function on the alien. Cicero declared the fundamental character of a community to be a common language, common “ius,” and common weal. There is no common language, “ius,” or weal in the Rome Juvenal is portraying to us, and that is largely due to the Roman class system.
Thus, we return to the notion of caste, in which function and heredity primarily determine one’s social position. I am under no delusion that I am a “secret aristocrat,” as the liberal slur goes. My heredity is pure redneck back over five hundred years. Under a strict hereditarian system, I would most likely be prohibited from receiving enough education to read Juvenal. Nevertheless, the reactionary in me says that my personal situation is irrelevant, and I ask of my reader to keep that in mind themselves as they read the following. If I must be a farmer in order that my people should be free and my children be assured a place, no matter how humble, in their own homeland, then that is a price I am willing to pay.
No functional society is possible without a hereditarian caste system. The arrogance and superbia of Man is such that there must be hard, unbreakable limits on personal ambition, along with strict disincentives to opportunistic parasitism. I am not saying that there cannot be any movement, or that every son of a farmer must be destined to farm forevermore. Even Plato did not suggest this. Every system has some level of flexibility, both ethnic and caste. It is no coincidence that English populations on the borders of the Danegeld, Wales, and Scotland show DNA markers for Nordic and Celtic genotypes. Nor do I deny the various Ciceros and Charles Martels who rose from middling ranks to preserve and protect their homelands. However, the flexibility inherent in any caste system is a weakness in the armor of a nation, and every exception to the rule justifies the waiting masses of alien grifters, who undermine the whole of social order for the material benefit of himself and his tribe.
Hereditarianism is perhaps the most important safeguard to any society because social stability rests on consuetudines et usus, unwritten norms and ethics tied to particular ethnic and cultural groups. It is no coincidence that Ethnic and Ethics arise from the same Greek root. One does not routinely scam one’s neighbors because they are kith and kin; their essential connection to you is the bond and guarantee of equitable relationships. We mourn the day when “a man’s handshake was his bond,” but that handshake wasn’t the true bond. The bond, (in legal terminology, the collateral of a contract) is the reputation one has in the community, which is built upon common heredity. Honor matters because it is the mark of approval from the community that one abides by the unwritten rules which make society spin. The alien neither has honor, nor cares for honor, because he does not care for the community with which he shares no blood.
In any caste system, the alien is either the lowest caste or outside the system altogether. The merchant, who surrenders his identity for a cosmopolitan existence, is also low on the scale, even when he shares blood with the community. This is because a caste system is a fundamental barrier to dyscivic practices and free-rider scenarios, and these two groups have the most to gain from undermining the system and replacing caste with class. When wealth replaces blood, who becomes the highest members of society? It is no coincidence that the word “liberal” was nearly always preceded by “bourgeois” until the 20th century; they are the beneficiaries of the replacement of the medieval caste with the capitalist class system. Likewise, the replacement of caste with class is the only means wherein the alien will be permitted to rise in status over the native-born.
Caste and blood are the only protection that native-born labor have against oppression and loss of self-determinationhence the traditional support of the rural working class for reactionary politics. The upper-castes, the priesthood and aristocracy, are limited in their oppression by those very customs which make society run, but the alien landlord or banker is not so constrained by the cultural limits on power and is free to grind the working classes into dust. When a reactionary says, “neither capitalist nor socialist,” it is a recognition that both are symptoms of the same social breakdown.
The destruction of social order epitomized by the English Whigs and the resultant socialist working-class backlash to an out-of-order bourgeoisie have their roots in the rejection of the role of blood and heredity in determining a social order. Bourgeois rebels against custom and order create socialist rebels by destroying the functional limits on power in society which rested in the hereditary aristocracy.
There is a price to be paid in personal liberty for a caste system, true. I would never be allowed to become a scholar in a society where heredity ruled. The other option, however, is this:
Then up comes a lordly dame who, when her husband wants a drink, mixes toad’s blood with his old Calenian, and improving upon Lucusta herself, teaches her artless neighbours to brave the talk of the town and carry forth to burial the blackened corpses of their husbands. If you want to be anybody nowadays, you must dare some crime that merits narrow Gyara or a gaol; honesty is praised and starves. It is to their crimes that men owe their pleasure-grounds and high commands, their fine tables and old silver goblets with goats standing out in relief. Who can get, sleep for thinking of a money-loving daughter-in-law seduced, of brides that have lost their virtue, or of adulterers not out of their teens? Satire 1
 It can mean law, justice, or Right. In this situation, it probably means all three.