I smoked my first Cuban cigar at this year’s AMREN thanks to my friend William Rome. He, Matt Forney, and I skipped part of the conference, choosing Cuba and the beautiful spring day, over ideological dogmatism. Besides, these conferences are about networking. We could hear recordings of the lectures some other time.
Rome has classic WASPy features and a ready smile. Forney is more serious, reminding me of a 1920’s gangster; one with uncharacteristic intelligence. His anecdotes make up for the humor his face lacks. Both men have enviable traits and I found myself (not for the last time) feeling inadequate in their company.
Forney is a big name in the “manosphere”. I’ve criticized his work. But despite what some desperate-to-remain-relevant people have said about him, he’s a dignified gent at least. Far more imposing of a figure in real life than rapscallion podcasters make out. After the conference, when some of us gathered in a local TN watering hole, my friend Matthew Heimbach challenged Forney to display his “pick up artist” skills, to which Forney replied that he’d managed to make us all like him, despite the fact we all expressed disagreement with him and his material.
Well done sir. Well done.
Antics inside the conference were a riot as well.
AMREN hosted its first ever debate although I’m still not sure what the parameters were. Richard Spencer of NPI fame and the great Sam Dickson squared off against VDARE’s Peter Brimelow and John Derbyshire.
Spencer and Dickson argued that we can no longer “work within the system” and that we ought to find white equivalents to Gandhi and baby King Jr. Brimelow and the Derb argued that we could work within the system, “at least, change was theoretically possible”, added the Derb.
“I’m not arguing that it will happen” he said, “…just that it CAN!”.
At which point, Spencer had a devastating reply: “if that was the case, then anything at all could theoretically happen from within the system.” If we’re forced to be so vacuous in our position as to argue mere possibilities, no matter how far fetched, then we’re no longer speaking to the realities of our current situation.
Spencer clearly won the debate, almost single handed, although Dickson’s exchange with the Derb exemplified a level of rhetorical prowess (on both men’s part) that we simply wont see in mainstream politics. Two masters at work. I think Matt Parrott is right though – if someone as brilliant as the Derb has trouble defending the idea that we ought to work within the system, then it must be a truly awful one.
Some are interested in the protesters who show up every year. They arrived this year as well. A gaggle of white kids holding insulting signs congregated on the front lawn attempting to shame the evil racists in the building.
Not that I feel it’s a point of pride, but there was more “diversity” among the conference attendees than among the protesters, with Taylor having invited a tall, Amazonian-looking black woman, who seemed amiable to our views and had a generally nice air about her. There were also a few Puerto Rican nationalists in the crowd. Good kids but I don’t fawn over minorities just because they share our views. While I wish them the best of luck, I’m not concerned with their folk.
Lamont Jenkins, the left’s Fat Albert and organizer of the protest, waddled into the conference restaurant, flanked by a few skinny-jean clad hipsters. There, Heimbach and some other attendees had an interesting tete-a-tete. When I walked in, Jenkins expressed concern that he didn’t see me at this year’s CPAC. “That’s because you leftists didn’t pay my way,” I replied.
I couldn’t take much of their dribble. Heimbach’s always been better at that. I decided to leave. But I like leaving on a high note so I told Jenkins it was nice to see him again. He asked, sarcastically, “Is it?!”
“Of course” I said. “I always leave our encounters certain that my ideas are far superior to yours”.
In my mind, it was Richard Spencer who set the tone of this year’s conference. He made the brief remark that even if we (he specifically included himself) were not aristocrats, we ought to start thinking like ones. Being future oriented in our plans. This coincides well with the general agreement that, whatever we end up doing, it’ll take a long time to get done and wont spontaneously happen from “within” the system.
See you all at next year’s conference…