Dissidents with elite potential must join liberal organizations
Not to subvert them - but to become stronger
As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.
I spent a decade working for private sector organizations that are considered elite within the fields of tech and consulting, and then I left.
I underwent unconscious bias training, used preferred pronouns, and worked alongside trans colleagues.
I also became smarter and more capable. I married and started a family in my twenties, and finished this period fitter, stronger, and more right-wing than when I started.
If you have elite potential, you should follow this path too.
The impetus for this article was a friendly back-and-forth that I had with. His position is understandable, and indeed, completely correct: infiltrating progressive organizations like Google, McKinsey, or Cravath is impossible. They’re hostile to right-wingers, and have no incentive to move rightwards at an institutional level.
Not only is it impossible, the broader argument goes, but the attempt will destroy your soul. You’ll have to live a double life, endure humiliation rituals, and as a straight white conservative, your advancement will be blocked at every turn.
But this entire logic is predicated upon a misframing of the objective. ‘Infiltration’, which is indeed doomed, is not your goal. You’re not there to change the institution; you’re there to change yourself.
If you truly have elite potential - and you have to be brutally honest about this - working at organizations of this caliber will teach you lessons that you cannot learn anywhere else.
You will turn yourself into an asset that the right desperately needs.
The pains are tolerable. As I’ve previously written in my guide to ascending progressive institutions as a non-progressive - you’re not there to talk politics, you’re there to do a job. You’re not going to be openly reactionary, but neither will you have to conceal your conservative disposition. Be pleasant, appear healthy, and stay silent.
The truth is that if you choose the right role, you will actually spend almost all your time ‘just working’. And therein lies the value.
We need more right-wingers pulling seven-figure salaries.
Yes - all of us will need to reduce, and ultimately remove, our dependence on ‘The Cathedral’ (’s term for the network of elite progressive institutions).
But before you do this, you need to ensure that you’re in a position of independent strength, and on a path that will allow that strength to compound over time. Paradoxically, spending a period at an elite liberal institution is often the fastest path to this goal.
After all, who gained power after the fall of the Soviet Union? Total outsiders and dissidents? No: Putin was former KGB, billionaire oligarch Vladimir Potanin worked for the Ministry of Foreign Trade.
To become elite you must encounter elites. You must connect with them, learn from them. Read James Burnham - sure - but be aware that you’re reading a theoretical description of the behavior of elites, you’re not learning to become one.
Joining progressive institutions has both short- and long-term ‘right-wing’ benefits.
When I met my now wife, she was a beautiful student at a prestigious college. Because of the strength of my career at the time, she was happy to get married and start a family straight after graduating, rather than enter the field that she had worked hard to become qualified in.
Starting a family is expensive. Giving your children an elite education is very expensive. You’ll need a large salary and great family benefits, of a kind that few firms can offer.
If you’re happy ‘staying in’ for the long haul - or if you’re able to parlay your elite experience into a lucrative independent venture - you could become very wealthy indeed. This will allow you to provide much needed funding and opportunities to others.
When I refer to ‘elite institutions’, I mean a relatively small number of leading private sector firms. My experience spans tech, law, and consulting, but you’ll find equivalents in finance and other relevant sectors.
In tech this means FAANG and FAANG-adjacent (even better if they do decidedly ‘unwoke’ work, like Anduril). In consulting, McKinsey, BCG, Bain. In finance, elite boutiques and trading firms like Jane Street. Law - Cravath, etc. - depends on your country.
Key roles at these firms are often orders of magnitude harder to land than places at ‘elite’ colleges like Harvard. If you have a shot at landing one - doesn’t matter how hard you’ve been blackpilled about how woke they are - you should go for it.
This may sound obvious. You might think: if I graduate from Stanford Computer Science, obviously I’m applying to FAANG. But I’ve seen a surprising number of people on the right argue against this, and I’m also concerned that young right-wingers are also being discouraged from pursuing elite colleges in the first place, because they are being implicitly told the hard work isn’t worth it. It is.
Some of these firms, like Google, admittedly have a lot of ‘fat’: intellectual hangers-on that are considerably less impressive than you might imagine. Nevertheless, if you’re bright, you will be struck by how pleasant it is to generally work alongside other very bright people.
I went to a leading college in my field, and was still frustrated by how slow the average student was to absorb ideas and concepts, slowing the whole class down. This frustration largely ceased at my first FAANG job, and disappeared entirely at a smaller elite boutique firm.
Don’t select a company that you think has the highest average IQ; select the role in which you will have access to the small number of ultra-high performers that you can learn from, the elite within the elite.
Be selective about which ‘elite paths’ to take. You want to select for those that cultivate your energy, vitality, and clarity of thought - not those that parasitize it. For this reason my advice would be to avoid the real ‘meat grinder’ paths - ie. biglaw and the normal routes through investment banking.
Be sure to select jobs where IQ will be rewarded and not crushed, and where there is a culture of independence. If you’re a standout SWE, tech firms have roles in which you’ll realistically only have to do a few hours of (very complex and taxing) work a day, but can otherwise have a strong work/life balance. Get as close to this as possible.
If you gain access to the elite performers within elite institutions, you will be shocked by just how good they are. It will energize and inspire you to be better, regardless of their politics. I guarantee it. I’ll summarize the benefits below.
You will quickly realize that the people in the top 10% of these firms move faster than you. They generate more value than you. They are more ambitious than you. They’ve built bigger things than you. They’re calmer under pressure than you.
They also make more money than you. You might recoil at my suggestion that this is important: we are trained to think of this as a crass, striving concern. Throw away this reaction. You will need money to provide a large family a true middle-class life. You will need money to pursue important projects later.
I worked under one senior leader that I will never forget. The audacity of the projects he attempted, and the sophistication with which he pursued them, forced me out of my self-satisfied complacency (many of you will be similarly smug from being smart in school - this is a harmful posture that should be crushed). The first six months working under him was the first time I felt slow, sometimes stupid. By the way: this guy was a straight, white, married, conservative father. These guys do exist in these companies. The kind of men that built the West.
The online right can give you political theory and motivational entertainment. Elite firms will teach you how to act. You will not reach your full potential without contact with people that are operating on a higher level than you are. If you can reach their level, but retain your clear-eyed right-wing understanding of the world, you will be able to achieve monumental things.
These companies are executing high-scale, high-stakes, era-defining projects. Isn’t this a perfect description of what the right also needs to start undertaking? It’s quite possible that within a year or two you will have ownership over a project worth millions of dollars under the mentorship of an experienced executor. You can’t gain this capability merely by observing; you have to do it.
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