The Approach of Communitarianism – Jean Thiriart

I have already written in abundance on European Communitarianism.

The analysis is constantly improvable and new and important subjects appear in the course of research. Thus, I have placed a bit too much importance on a capital phenomenon, that of the “class collaboration” between the old and tired European plutocracy and the very young American plutocracy, more dynamic and having this territorial factor – THE GREAT STATE – which is determinant.

Our European capitalists are less dynamic, less young than their American cousins and that is their primary handicap. On the other hand, the Americans have a demo-economic factor, a collective, of 250 million individuals without customs barriers; that constitutes our second handicap. Since 1945, the European plutocracy has accepted, easily, American tutelage, no longer feeling up to defending its goods. If chancellor HITLER had won the war, it would have just as well accepted German tutelage. This aspect is very important. A European politics will never happen with the political personnel entirely subservient to the interests of the United States. That is a gigantic imposture of this Atlanticist Europe, it’s the square wheel. It rests on the consequences of the class collaboration between European plutocracy and American plutocracy, the first accepting the tutelage of the second.

Our Conception of the World

The French reader will excuse my use of the Germanic term “Weltanschauung” which means the conception of the world, the description of the ends in themselves, the image of the world projected by our spirit. The choice of a “Weltanschauung” is thus subjective and arbitrary. The pretension of a scientific “Weltanschauung” is risible. Until the present We could not determine -or put into accord – an ultimate end in itself for humanity, by rational proceedings, also called logical-experimental. The rational exists in the means, but not in the ends or the end. I can only touch upon here – and barely – this gigantic problem. We hold that the European man has his plenitude (I did not say perfection) of his development towards “being-more.” On the other hand, we have observed in antiquity, men who sought to attain “having more,” such as the Persians and the Carthaginians. We destroyed them.

Today there exists a school of “having more”, which is the economism that divides itself, provisionally in two branches. The poor, that is to say the Marxists and the rich, that is to say the American.

For this school of “having more,” economics dominates everything. In Vietnam, these big primary-school children that are the Americans cannot even comprehend the Vietnamese villager to whom they have offered a carton of milk at noon and who now plants a dagger in their back at midnight.

As for the Marxists, we have discovered with fright that communist society engenders a juvenile delinquency, an infinite nihilism ampler than that manifested by the decadent bourgeoisie. I had to open this parenthetical to outline the reasons for which we say that politics should dominate the economy. That is only because politics is, in our eyes, our Weltanschauung put in action, an aesthetic of the world put in action. Economics, society are means, never ends in themselves. Otherwise to that miserable humanity, we will go!

The school of the right, which has in general, by heredity, no material cares, neither close to social and economic factors; they read PEGUY and play DEBUSSY. When the masses cry, it calls to give them their brioche to shut them up. Here we assist the negation of material realities. On the opposite hand, we find the proponents of the happiness of mankind, satiated. This satiation can be attempted by collectivist ways (at least they are trying to support it) or by mercantile ways. The Marxist and American chapels are in the same church.

Abundance makes peace, happiness. That evidently makes man smile, clear from the depths of his human soul. The curates with the aid of the confessional and the psychologists with the aid of the couch that can measure material society do not suffice to create equilibrium.

Consumerist societies succeeded, taking the Swedish path, procuring an impressive number of sexual deviants, suicides. Art and intellectual creation have disappeared there. The Swedes are one of the most sterile types, in this intellectual scheme, that there are. That is the culmination of “having more.” All their washbasins have branched from the hot water of the commune; but their spirit is detached from all creative currents. In conclusion, for us politics dominates the economic. Thus we are going to study the best means of the economy and society. We benefit from a remarkable chance. We can compare 70 years of Marxism applied in the USSR and 70 years of modern capitalism in the USA. From this comparison, we can extract a pragmatic method disengaged from the fogs of an infantile idealism of a PROUDHON, of the messianism of a MARX, from the naivete of perfectionism.

We thus search for the economics of maximum effectiveness. We do not want in the name of absolute intellect to despise materialism in the fashion of orientals today. We consider economics as a means, that cannot be prevented from conceiving the maximum of development. The problem will be quite simply to look after this future … always dominated by the spirit of “being more”, and assimilate a plethora of means. That will lead to the Promethean Man that crowns our “Weltanschauung,” whereas materialist societies only lead to satiated but neurotic consumers.

Thus analyzing effectiveness in economy: that will be Communitarianism.

Capitalism and Free Enterprise

The blind of the left regularly and voluntarily confound capitalism and free enterprise. Observation compared the Soviet system (statist) and the American (free enterprise), sufficiently establishing that free enterprise is ten times more fecund.

Quality, and quantity, of offered products demonstrates that man produces more and better in a framework of liberty, of autonomy. To say that liberty is a right is risible. On the contrary, observation reveals that liberty is a need. The private man, with a minimum quantity of liberty, no longer creates, produces less, produces poorly. The feeling of constraint produces a depressive psychological state. Liberty is thus a need. It is necessary to realize that. Moreover, for the commune of mortals, the most effective motivation remains self-interest. We can deplore it under the ethical scheme, but it is a reality . By wanting to ignore it, in the name of normative arguments, the double reality of the need for liberty and the motivation of personal interest, the great stores of Moscow only offer fairy-tales and elevated prices.

As for the abuse of capitalism, it consists in the interference of private economic powers in political life. Capitalism tends to monopoly, that is to say the suppression of an essential condition of its vitality: competition. Capitalism equally tends to the creation of interests opposed to those of the nation. We hold that capitalism destroys in the measure where it becomes monopolistic by hypertrophy, in the measure where it interferes in politics by the concentration of means.

Marx had a very pertinent view that bourgeois parliamentary democracy was only the facade behind which capitalist power commanded everything and everyone: that is the “pluto-democracy” described by PARETO already century ago. (1) But MARX was tricked, in the infantile fashion of investing a certain proletariat with a mystical command of society. The negative analysis of MARX is correct. His positive plan is infantile, normative, virtue-bound. MARX did not see the future possibility of a pure political class, of power as priesthood. The concept of the political class that I will describe elsewhere, is only conceivable after satiety is realized – in probably half a century. Thus it is the commandment given to the ALPHA of HUXLEY (2). But here I leave the subject.

Communitarianism tends to the economy of power, in opposition to the capitalist concept of the economy of profit and to the Marxist concept of the economy of utopia. In the framework of the economy of power, we hold that free enterprise is a very positive factor, in one hand, and on the other. that the oligarchies of money should be castrated politically

Democracy and Responsibility

One of the idea-forces of our communitarian political thought is responsibility. The democratic principle would only be supportable if it were accompanied by the corollary of responsibility. The principle of majority vote is actually to flee before responsibilities. It is by hiding behind majorities that we play the fool.

The weakness of Soviet agriculture and the mismanagement of social security here in the West are illustrations of fleeing before responsibilities.

On the economic plan, we are AGAINST state collectivism as a general rule (there exists exceptions in strategic industries) and FOR a certain collectivism in cooperative forms. If a voluntary economic collective – and thus free – manages its affairs poorly , it will punish itself, if it is well managed it will reward itself, thus we must empower collective enterprises. Today all the pillages, all the wastes are covered by the anonymity of the “majority is not responsible” and paid for by the state. Communitarianism will tend to encourage communal authorities, cooperative societies, but it will simultaneously consider them as entities responsible for themselves (self-managed). Thus that is one aspect of Communitarianism.

Specific Organization and Dimensional Regulation of the Economy

We touch here on the heart of our thought.

What is “specific organisation?” It is the character of the enterprise. Its specificity, it is the fact that it makes military rockets or toys.

What is “dimensional regulation?” It is the volume of the enterprise. The fact that it employs 50 workers or 50,000 workers. We can thus envision four limited cases. The strategic enterprise of 50 workers, the strategic enterprise of 50,000 workers, the fabrication of toys with 50 workers, the fabrication of toys with 50,000 workers. The political vision of things will tell us that the specific character of strategic enterprise will oblige the state to close surveillance (that is specific organization).

The political visions of things will tell us that a man who is sole proprietor of a toy factory of 50,000 doesn’t interest the state for the specificity of his factory (toys do not concern national defense) but the volume of his factory (here the communitarian concept of dimensional regulation will intervene) will upset the state or the unitary European party in power. Actually, a man who controls such an enterprise may experience the desire to interfere in politics by the power of his financial means. The concentration of economic power will tempt him politically sooner or later. Here liberalism allows him to act and the Communitarian State does not allow him to act. For example in Belgium, the liberal party is controlled by the sugar trust (notably) and the “Christian” party by a chocolate trust and the wire manufacturing one.

The error committed by dogmatic Marxism wast the desire to nationalize the little industries of 50 workers, that sterilized them. The imprudence of liberalism consists of the political liberty that allows the magnates of steel and petroleum to act. The European Communitarian State supports many medium and little free enterprises and an indispensable quantity – for technological reasons- of giant enterprises properly controlled.

Before closing this chapter, finally note that the specific character of certain enterprises demands nationalization or liberty. For example, a central hydro-electric plant requires colossal capital and then ridiculously small workforce numbers (50 technicians or employees.) This type of enterprise is typically destined to nationalization. On the contrary, the production and distribution of agricultural and poultry products requires the free economy. Dogmatic Marxism wants to nationalize EVERYTHING as demanded by the reason of the managers of Kiev and Moscow, liberalism wants to allow everything to be. Communitarianism wants to preserve all absolute political control while allowing the maximum possible economic liberty to exist.

The Importance of Economic Nationalism

Free exchange is a factor of economic progress; in effect it creates and requires competition.

Thus it is competition that develops in a great framework, such as that of the United State, a unit more powerful than the little framework, such as those of France or Italy. That is the evidence by which we have created the Common Market. But here as elsewhere, as with any thesis, it is necessary to denounce the corollaries of the principal law. To face the American economy of a unitary type with a “supplemented” ensemble (but not an integrated one), the European economy is headed to the phagocytosis of our economic unit by the American economic unit.

The Atlanticist Europe, this imposture that is presented to us by American occupation and by its accomplices, the new “collaborators”, wants to invert this order [the political preceding the economic]  and pretend to an “Atlantic market” before the formation of a European political unit. This “Atlantic” market renders European politics impossible. If we do not react the European economy will truly be integrated into the American financial unit, rendering a European politics impossible.

The symbiosis of the American and European economies, is firstly the destruction, even before its birth, of European politics and then the easy domination of Americans in the “Atlantic collective.” Here appears the necessity of an “economic nationalism.” Europe must voluntarily and as soon as possible CUT LINKS with the American economy. It is a political option here. Europe must tend to its autarky in the military scheme and in all urgency.

The imbeciles who pester against the fabrication of the French nuclear bomb, that we hold to be the European nuclear bomb tomorrow, prefer without a doubt to pay tribute to the American bomb of which they do not have political control!

There is not an independent nation without an autonomous military force. And a nation that depends on the arms of the foreigner is a satellite. Even when it could buy them it would still be in a state of dependence. Economic nationalism notably consists of ensuring that Europe is totally autonomous in matters of armament and totally autonomous in the domain of supplying of raw materials.

If tomorrow the USA was engaged in a planetary war, it is not necessary that neutral Europe should suffer the blowback and come to lose certain materials.

Economic nationalism thus signifies economic independence and military autarky.

More, and finally, our economy should be planned from now on, in view of the reunification of our fatherland as far as Vladivostok.

All our thought must tend to make Western European economic power a means among others to recover our provinces provisionally lost to the East. The future is not in a mercantile empire from Frankfurt to San Francisco; our future is in our empire from Dublin to Vladivostok.

Our economic projects from now on must be inspired by this will of destiny.


3 thoughts on “The Approach of Communitarianism – Jean Thiriart

  1. Thankyou very much for this. Do you have a date as to its publication, or a source on where it was published?

    Congratulations again on your work with the Translation Project. I have another question for you, if you don’t mind- and I realise there is a potentially big answer hiding behind such a small question:

    *Do you know if Ernst Junger wrote any explicitly political (as in ideological/philosophical) writing, beyond the themes expressed through his literary writing? I know he wrote for ‘Der Arbeiter’ and Niekisch’s ‘Widerstand’, but I’ve never been able to track down articles from either of these. I know there are books which cover these topics, but they’re in German, a language I don’t speak. If you could point me towards the name of any particularly noteworthy book or essay of his (even if in German) I’d appreciate it. Thankyou.

    Btw, we corresponded before, several months back. I don’t expect you to remember me. But I will remind you, if you didn’t purchase it already- acquire a copy of Dr. Krebs’s memoirs ‘The Infancy of Nazism’. Absolutely indispensible book, particularly as it provides a Strasserist perspective on internal NSDAP politics.

    Thanks again!



    • Hello,

      The source for this article is from the French archive of National Revolutionary texts,, here’s the link to the original French version:

      Junger’s “Arbeiter” has been translated into English recently via Northwestern University Press, and there are PDF versions. I can provide you a copy. His writings in “Widerstand,” unfortunately have not been, nor is it likely that Klett-Cotta, the publisher that maintains the rights to his complete works, wants to pursue translation of them in the near future.

      Eugene Montsalvat


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