Futurism is a worldview, not an ideology. What is the difference? A worldview is a philosophy of life or a conception of the world. An ideology is a set of ideas or ideals which form the basis for a political or economic model. The worldview precedes the ideological. The worldview is timeless and is not subject to change. To those who adhere to a worldview, it represents absolute truth. It is multi-faceted and informed by various factors such as environment, lived experience, religious belief, aesthetics, metaphysics etc. Ideology, however, is how worldviews manifest themselves and impose themselves on material reality. Ideologies are not timeless. They are a product of the time and place in which they were conceived. They have an expiration date, and should be discarded when their relevance is lost or they have been proven to be flawed or un-useful through practice. The ideology is merely the vehicle for the worldview to manifest itself and is not important in and of itself.
Futurism as a worldview could manifest itself through many ideologies. A futurist could be a liberal, a fascist, a communist, an anarchist or really any other ideology that promotes progress over tradition. A futurist could express himself through art, politics or lifestyle, the important thing is that he projects his futurist worldview onto material reality, since thought is nothing without action.
As futurists we can and should admire figures like Marinetti or Mayakovsky who embodied our worldview but we are not at all obligated to follow in their footsteps. The futurist, after all, is always marching forward. He does not cling to the past or engage in hero worship.
Marinetti aligned himself with Mussolini’s Fascist movement. This made sense for him to do at the time. Mussolini was capable of taking power, and could have potentially been useful for actualizing the futurist worldview in Italy at the time. In practice, this did not happen exactly, but Mussolini’s regime was certainly friendlier to the Futurist movement than Hitler or Stalin were, and Marinetti was able to promote his ideas more effectively as a fascist than he would have been able to do if he had aligned himself with some other ideological movement in Italy at that time.
But should 21st century futurists align themselves with 21st century fascists? I would have to say, absolutely not. Aside from the fact that Fascism is a dead and irrelevant ideology now, people who call themselves Fascists definitely lean more conservative and trad. Not only are they not interested in futurist idea’s, they are fiercely opposed to them. This makes them opponents who are diametrically opposed to the goals of the futurist. They are enemies, not potential allies. Trying to find common ground with them is a waste of time and effort that would be better put towards other more fruitful endeavours. I would argue that Communism is also irrelevant today. Dugin has the right idea with establishing a fourth political theory, in my opinion, but he is a traditionalist so his actual ideology is not relevant to us. Still, I agree with the idea of establishing a new 21st century ideology that is syncretic and is useful for 21st century realities. Larping as blackshirts from a movement that failed and died 80 years ago, is childish and people who do this should really grow the fuck up. Personally I see more potential for alliances with Post-Left Anarchists, KomFuts or Accelerationists than with anyone on the right in 2022, but I’m open minded and will hear out pretty much anyone who is also open minded and respectful.
I will close with a quote from Mark Fisher’s Capitalist Realism, as I think it is relevant to this mini-essay. Though he is talking about the left, I would argue it is just as relevant to people on the right who are living in the past.
“”We are now in a political landscape littered with what Alex Williams called ‘ideological rubble’ – it is year zero again, and a space has been cleared for a new anti-capitalism to emerge which is not necessarily tied to the old language or traditions. One of the left’s vices is its endless rehearsal of historical debates, its tendency to keep going over Kronsdadt or the New Economic Policy rather than planning or organizing for a future that it really believes in. The failure of previous forms of anti-capitalist political organization should not be a cause of despair, but what needs to be left behind is a certain romantic attachment to the politics of failure, to the comfortable position of a defeated marginality.” Mark Fisher, Capitalist Realism