In May of last year, I made this observation:
We Christians are familiar—some only passingly familiar--with Jesus’ assertion that the Devil is the Father of Lies. That is, he is the progenitor of everything that is false. Let’s stipulate that and go further: he is the architect [and builder] of Lies. God is building His kingdom, and so the Adversary is building his. (…)I recalled this observation this morning while reading this piece -- The Making of an American Nazi -- at the Atlantic. I think it's mistitled, because the subject of it -- a guy name Andrew Anglin -- seems to be the very embodiment of the concept I described. It's not even just that his particular version of Carcass Worship -- white supremacy -- is a lie. That's secondary or even tertiary to my point. The primary point is that his persona itself is a complex anti-construction which covers up this one thing.
When we think of lies, we tend to think of them as linear, one-dimensional, straight-out falsehoods: 2+2=57, for example—a thing so outrageously false as to be laughable. (...)
Following the math example, think of the most complex mathematical statement that is true, then think of the inverse, a process that’s also complex but false. But how would most people know that the process is false? Its sheer complexity is its shield against the revelation of its false nature.
Nothingness. This man believes in nothing.
|Shapeshifter. Unknown artist.|
And, through trial and error, he has become pretty good at building personas, discarding them and his followers, and building new ones. Vegan, Anti-racist. Naturalist. White Savior to a Filipino tribe, flirter with Islam. Neo-Nazi. At present, according to the piece, he's attempting to shape-shift yet again. You have to read the article to see what I'm talking about. One wonders what this next shape will look like.
I'm reminded of the Steven King's description of the Randall Flagg character in the author's uncut version of The Stand.
His pockets were stuffed with fifty different kinds of conflicting literature – pamphlets for all seasons, rhetoric for all reasons. When this man handed you a tract you took it no matter what the subject: the dangers of atomic power plants, the role played by the International Jewish Cartel in the overthrow of friendly governments, the CIA-Contra-cocaine connection, the farm workers' unions, the Jehovah's Witnesses [...], the Blacks for Militant Equality, the Kode of the Klan. He had them all, and more, too.-- pp. 180-181
When he walked into a meeting [of revolutionaries] the hysterical babble ceased – the backbiting, recriminations, accusations, the ideological rhetoric. For a moment there would be dead silence and they would start to turn to him and then turn away, as if he had come to him with some old and terrible engine of destruction cradled in his arms, something a thousand times worse than the plastic explosive made in the basement labs of renegade chemistry students or the black market arms obtained from some greedy army post supply sergeant. It seemed that he had come to them with a device gone rusty with blood and packed for centuries in the Cosmoline of screams but now ready again, carried to their meeting like some infernal gift, a birthday cake with nitroglycerine candles. And when the talk began again it would be rational and disciplined – as rational and disciplined as madmen can make it -- and things would be agreed upon.-- p. 182
Say what you want about Stephen King, but the man can write.
Is it a coincidence that Anglin's ideological resume looks very similar to that of the fictional Randall Flagg, King's embodiment of a highly-placed demon? Probably not.
Something to keep in mind: no earthly organization seems to be immune to highly placed chameleons/nihilists who can and will lead the spiritually unwary down into the abyss. This Anglin guy is just one on the list of Pied Pipers -- a long, old, ugly list.
Just doing the work of their father.
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