Pictured above is Radix’s recording studio (as you can tell from the microphone). It’s also our newsroom . . . our publishing and design center . . . and the NPI front office. And it doesn’t end there. There are many more desks like this one, of contributors and writers, that comprise our international empire.
I don’t write this to seem flippant or ironic. For it’s worthwhile to meditate on the beauty of being small, decentralized, agile, and independent.
By using technology wisely, and investing in projects—like RadixJournal.com—instead of buildings and bureaucrats, we are able to do more with less.
We are a publishing house, which will produce hundreds of original essays and many new books each year. We’re a radio station, Vanguard, which broadcasts worldwide hours of original content that would be furiously censored by any terrestrial network. We’re an international body that hosts gatherings—this year’s is in Budapest, Hungary—which attract some of the best people in the world.
We do things everyday that, not very long ago, would seem impossible, or only possible if done by a massive corporation.
Of course, in terms of our bank account, we are dwarfed by major universities and mainstream media outlets . . . but those are the fat, lumbering organizations that are beginning to seem like dinosaurs.
There’s an advantage to being lean and mean. (And we’re often mean.)
Perhaps the best term for what we’re trying to achieve as an organization is “disruption.” Disruption of the direction Occidental societies have been heading over the past 70 years (at least), disruption of the way our people have been thinking for even longer.
Over the past 10 years, “disruption” has become a buzzword in the tech and business media and has been overused to the point of becoming synonymous with “super awesome.” But the theory that underlies “disruption” is quite insightful and powerful, and it should be of great interest to people like us.
On one level, “disruption” is the the theory of why big things fail and little things can succeed.
Entrenched, established incumbents, it would seem, have every advantage over upstarts: thy have capital, economies of scale, legitimacy, experience, a staff of employees, etc. So why is that, in all aspects of life (not only business), we periodically witness paradigm shifts that leave the big guys in the dust—vast transfers of wealth and legitimacy from dominant incumbents to disadvantaged entrants.
This is most obvious with the Internet and Web and their effects on communication, research, and publishing. Newspapers . . . libraries . . . network television . . . universities . . . these institutions once seemed all-powerful and monolithic; they’ve becoming irrelevant and dispensable. Moreover, one quite positive aspect of the growth of the Internet and mobile computing is that it’s made us question whether we want or need a television or radio at all—and, more important, why we ever cared about what mainstream media outlets told us to think.
Disruption occurs politically as well. For most of the 19th century, a challenge to established monarchies and bourgeois parliaments was imagined only by Romantics, the insane, and social malcontents. After the Great War and its aftermath undermined the old order, it was exactly those “revolutionary” parties, with tight structures and new ideologies and aesthetics, that were best suited to take power.
Perhaps one could say that the greatest “disruption” of all time occurred 66 million years ago. Some kind of climatic change brought an end to the reign of the dinosaurs: being monstrous suddenly became a disadvantage. Those best able to survive were small, “weak” proto-mamals—ultimately our ancestors—who were previously living underground or scurrying in the shadows of the giant lizards.
Before we get carried away, let’s think about what’s being disrupted in society today.
One thing is clear: American and European culture is radically fragmenting. No longer are the “Big 3” networks guarding discourse, nor are there any perceivable national mono-cultures.
There’s an element of tragedy to this development, and we could, like so many reactionary conservatives, lament the loss of unity and security. But we should remember some important things. First, it was the old establishment that brought about (or was incapable of resisting) the world we live in today. Secondly, the old establishment never had place for us, or at least never had a place for our ideas and ideals.
Our ultimate triumph depends on our ability to harness the energies generated by fragmentation; we need to ride this wave, not resist it.
What Must Be Done
So what does all this mean for sustaining our movement?
For one thing, it means that we simply need to ignore institutional and corporate donations: they’re of the old world, and they don’t like us anyway.
Instead, we think about ways that we can transform small things into big things.
With this mind, we’ve established what we call the Radix “Menu.”
I know that there are many people who want to donate to Radix, Vanguard Radio, and NPI, but the prospect of writing one big check is daunting. We tell ourselves we’ll do it next week or next year . . . or, effectively, never.
Our “Menu” is about breaking up a meal into bite-sized morsels; our method is recurring monthly donations.
The Menu begins with the Cappuccino. This is a monthly donation of just $2.75 (roughly the price of an espresso with steamed milk). It’s the kind of small purchase that we make all the time; it doesn’t upset our monthly budget; indeed, we don’t even notice it.
A lot of people ask me, “How can I help?” Well, the “Cappuccino” is a great way, and we’re not asking for a lot.
Next on the menu is the Merlot ($20 per month, or the cost of a good bottle of wine) and then the Bourbon ($50 per month, or the cost of a top-shelf bottle of Whisky). At year’s end, both of these add up to substantial donations—the kinds of gifts that make our operations possible. And they’re made a lot easier for you by being broken up into portions.
Beyond that I would encourage our wealthier donors to look into the Hyperborean Circle; here, you can find recurring plans upwards of $100 per month—a way for you to put a dint in the universe.
All you have to do is visit our payment page, select a monthly plan, and enter your payment information. It should take less than two minutes.
We’re using an excellent payment system that accepts major credit cards and allows you to establish a profile and easily change your donation amount or form of payment, or cancel at any time.
I sincerely hope support you consider supporting Radix and everything we do.
Together, we can disrupt their regularly scheduled programming.