In many ways, its been a rather short 17 months since I started Thermidor, in other ways it feels like it was a thousand centuries ago. A lot has changed, not only in our society but in my personal life as well.
Looking back, I'm really quite happy with and proud of what we accomplished with Thermidor, it was intellectually rewarding and also a lot of fun. More importantly, it allowed me to meet some really interesting and great people, people I otherwise never would have.
But, when I am being honest with myself, I have to admit that something has changed for me. The intrinsic motivation I had when I started Thermidor has mostly evaporated. I don't know if I can properly explain or put my finger on exactly why this is but it's been bugging me for a while now. Something has changed, a lot of the energy that existed in certain online illiberal circles seems to have evaporated for some reason. Things seem to have generally plateaued for a lot of people (although I'm sure there will be others to help pick up the slack.) I guess what it really comes down to is that I'm just tired at this point, spiritually at least. Running something like Thermidor takes up more time and mental energy than you may realize, not that it's a crushing burden per se it just can feel that way when you no longer have the intrinsic motivation you once did to do it. And let's be honest, I'm not the greatest editor, to begin with. Editorship was really a role that was forced on me and which I wasn't super well suited for to begin with, although I'd like to think I made do pretty well at the end of the day.
The vision I originally had for Thermidor also didn't exactly materialize how I wanted it to, it's turned into something I didn't originally intend on. But in many ways this has been a pleasant surprise, what I got wasn't what I originally intended but it was still something wonderful and strange and great in and of itself. Still, I can't help but speculate that this, in part, is also something that may have sucked a bit of the motivation out of me at the end of the day.
Over the past month or so all of these issues have become more and more apparent to me. Thus, after talking it over with some friends I decided that it was probably time for me to step away from editorship at Thermidor and, probably, the "P.T.Carlo" pseudonym as well (eventually at least.)
This doesn't mean that Thermidor will be shutting down though. Thermidor deserves to go on, all of our writers keep putting out top-notch, interesting and important content, especially Carlsbad, Doug Symthe and Walter Deveraux (among others.) Thus, Nathan Duffy will be taking my place as Editor-in-Chief. Nathan is a great writer and a great guy and as Editor, you'll obviously be hearing a lot more from him than you recently have been. In a lot of ways, Duffy is really the logical face for the magazine Thermidor has become, much more so than I am when I'm being honest with myself.
As I said before, in addition to stepping away as Editor of Thermidor I'll also, probably be retiring the P.T.Carlo pseudonym at least as far as writing goes, but I'll probably still be around on Twitter(in a reduced capacity) as I value the friends and connections I've made on the platform and see no reason to give them up just yet.
There's a lot of benefits to writing pseudonymously that are obvious but also a few drawbacks that aren't obvious. One of the main drawbacks for me has been the development of a kind of double life, one which I've found to ultimately be a significant spiritual hindrance to me. But this aside, I also feel like I've basically blown my load as far as writing goes. My tank is mostly empty, and I've said most of the things I want to say at this point. It's not impossible that the spirit may strike me and I may do a cameo essay or two on Thermidor at some point, but this seems pretty unlikely to me, at least in the immediate future. Really I feel as though I said almost everything I wanted to in my last essay Christ, Nothing, and the Alt-Right. To sum it up simply: I'm just out of gas.
There are other personal projects, mostly totally unrelated to this sort of thing, I've been wanting to pursue a while now and that's probably what I'll be spending my time on in the immediate future. Nevertheless, my opinions on political and social issues haven't changed very much. If anything I've become more convinced of the necessity of, in the words of the great Barack Obama, degrading and ultimately destroying the Liberal Order. This includes not only its direct political manifestation in our lives but most importantly the narrative framework which serves as the beating heart of Liberalism as an ideology. Quite the task, one which I highly doubt I will see accomplished in any real sense in my lifetime.
Things are also probably going to get a lot worse before they get better, at least for those of us in the Anglosphere. Hence places like Thermidor, modest as they are, will be more important than ever as bastions of some kind of sanity in a world of ever-increasing pathology.
I think that's about all of it. Like I said, "P.T. Carlo," won't be going away totally, at least not immediately. In any case, I'll still be around, in some capacity, at least, "I'll be there..."