Might Is Right
by Ragnar Redbeard (with foreword by Anton Sanzor LaVey)
Michael Hunt Publishing
I first discovered Might Is Right in 1996 at a small book store in New York City’s East Village. I was intrigued by the title (of course) and noticed an endorsement by one Dr. Randall Philip, who publishes hate literature. I didn’t purchase the book, but I now knew of its existence. I received this review copy a couple of weeks ago when, coincidentally, I was reading Alfred North Whitehead’s Science and the Modern World, a book of early 20th century philosophy, generally diametrically opposed to what Might Is Right is about.
The basic gist of Might Is Right is that force always triumphs and a man has a duty to constantly protect, with force, what he has acquired by force himself. Laws are arbitrary constructs within which we have imprisoned ourselves; a real man makes his own laws! This 200-page essay on the righteousness of strength and the earth properly belonging to white European warriors, was first published in 1896 and then later in 1910. Apparently it caused quite a stir among some people, although it is never cited along with the Protocols of Zion (a hoax, by the way), Mein Kampf and other hate/empowerment literature of the 20th century. It was written by someone (more about that later) who was taught about the American Civil War by actual witnesses. He also watched wave after wave of European and Asian slave race “teeming masses” hit the shores of the United States. In addition to this “wretched refuse” the author vents his spleen especially at Christians, because Jesus, besides being a Jew, preached weakness, meekness and charity. The author lashes out at weak men who aren’t self-reliant, who fool around with women. He also advocates cannibalism, that is, an enemy vanquished should be treated as food when his usefulness as a slave runs out.
Alfred North Whitehead’s book is relevant because Whitehead makes a keen observation about what kind of man in today’s (circa 1925, but good enough for now) world would fit in ancient Greece: most likely a professional boxer. What about classical Greek scholars? Well, they’d be best suited for composing odes to the boxer… Redbeard kind of says the same thing in that he believes formal education is a waste of time for conquerors who should be practicing at war only and observes (correctly) that the educators of the Golden Age were all of the slave caste; citizenship was for those who’d proven themselves in battle, not in the classroom.
Anton Sanzor LaVey, author of the foreword and recently dead of natural causes, founded the Church of Satan. And he admits, in the foreword, that he borrowed much from Might Is Right for his own Satanic Bible. He also explains that many of his friends (prominent science fiction authors especially) had read Might Is Right and quietly agreed with its philosophy. It’s funny, but I’ve seen the name “Ragnar” in two places before: in a short story by Miriam Allen De Ford (The Season of the Babies) and a novel (The Viking) by Edison Marshall. It’s odd in that LaVey seemed to advocate that a person should indulge himself in personal pleasure (poke every hole if you feel like it), rather than deny himself the bounty of nature, which is opposite of what Redbeard says. Redbeard, on the other hand, demands of his supermen extreme discipline in matters of pleasure.
What is fascinating, though, and why Might Is Right is important, isn’t because powerful people read it in secret (they may have, but they clearly didn’t act on it, did they?), but it’s because “Ragnar Redbeard” is assumed to be none other than Jack London, author of White Fang, Call of the Wild, etc., and favorite of many a sixth grader and sixth grade teacher. This is partially believable because brazen racism comes forth in many of his short stories, especially The Unparalleled Invasion, which is about destroying every single native Chinese with biological warfare. However, Jack London was 20 years old in 1896 and didn’t publish anything until 1898. In 1896 he started at UC Berkeley, lasted one semester and then took off for a year in the Klondike, returning to start his prolific writing career. All that being said, who knows? Maybe Jack London did write Might Is Right, but that’s for you to decide. Jack London, by the way, died at 40, an alcoholic suicide in financial trouble. This was Ragnar Redbeard? The “Messiah of Odin”? A 5’7″ writer of adventure novels was the Ted Kaczinsky of his time?
One final thought, for all you would-we followers of Might Is Right, Ragnar Redbeard thought white American men to be sissies and Jews to being just a “clerk” race. You must remember that a army of working-class Americans, which included the former dregs of Italy, Ireland, Sweden, descendants of slaves, etc., beat the “master race” and with the physics developed by a Jewish patent clerk, blasted the “Aryan” Japanese (Hitler recognized them as such) into remembering that they were pacifists, actually, and so sorry. Thus ushering in the modern, American age, in which we are graced to live. Michael Hunt Publications, 360-23 W. Schick Rd. #116, Bloomingdale, IL 60108