Unqualified Reservations

by Mencius Moldbug

Welcome to UR

Unqualified Reservations is a strange blog: its goal is to cure your brain. We’ve all seen The Matrix. We know about red pills. Many claim to sell them. You can go, for example, to any bookstore, and ask the guy behind the counter for some Noam Chomsky. What you’ll get is blue pills soaked in Red #3.

Since we provide the genuine article, UR is pretty much the anti-Chomsky. (As a broad generalization, UR’s stance in any controversy will be the opposite of Chomsky’s.) Take one of our red pills—heck, split one in half—and you’ll be in a completely different world.

About this site

This site is designed as a permanent home for Unqualified Reservations by Mencius Moldbug. It includes links to ebooks prepared from the original Unqualified Reservations source material, as well as a complete chronological archive. Although Moldbug himself has retired from UR, this site and the various ebooks have been prepared with his permission, and he receives all royalties from sales.

Mencius Moldbug is widely credited with founding neoreaction (NRx), a political philosophy and intellectual movement dedicated to providing secure, responsible, and effective government. A central thesis of neoreaction is that accomplishing this goal requires a critical re-evaluation of “democracy” from the perspective of political engineering and informed by a study of the great political thinkers of the past. As Moldbug puts it in A Gentle Introduction to Unqualified Reservations :

The essence of any 21st-century reaction is the unity of these two forces: the modern engineering mentality, and the great historical legacy of antique, classical and Victorian pre-democratic thought. The adept, to achieve reactionary enlightenment, observes that both yield the same result. What can it be, but the truth for which all good men seek? Armed with this sure and fearless faith, the Reaction conquers all.

Although there are many who slander neoreaction, the reader is invited to evaluate UR for himself and make up his own mind. Be careful not to take everything Moldbug writes literally, though—as Moldbug himself notes when discussing arch-reactionary Daniel Defoe, author of The Shortest-Way with the Dissenters and Robinson Crusoe :

Defoe was a tricky fellow after my own heart. He too expects you to add your own salt.

Failing to add such salt when reading UR is guaranteed to cause confusion.

While it is certainly possible to read Unqualified Reservations from start to finish (or to peruse the excellent if slightly outdated topical archive), the Moldbug ebooks represent the most systematic and accessible introduction to neoreactionary thought. The ebooks, which are available for purchase at Amazon.com, are carefully assembled compilations of individual UR posts, and are a much more convenient format for reading long posts (or long series of posts) than the original site. In terms of content, the ebooks have been lightly edited and extensively annotated, with a large number of added and corrected links.

For reference, here is a complete list of the current Moldbug ebooks, listed roughly in recommended reading order:

An Open Letter to Open-Minded Progressives is the first systematic introduction Moldbug produced, but some readers may prefer the closely related volume A Gentle Introduction to Unqualified Reservations, which develops the Matrix-style Red Pill analogy that has become a hallmark of the dissident Right generally and NRx specifically. (The “Welcome to UR” section above is extracted from A Gentle Introduction.)

If you’re in a hurry, you can start with Technology, Communism and the Brown Scare, which is the shortest self-contained introduction to Moldbug’s political thought. Technology, Communism and the Brown Scare is available for free online (outdated with some broken links) or for 99¢ at Amazon (annotated with fixed links).

To keep up-to-date with this project and to get announcements related to Unqualified Reservations, you can follow the official Moldbug ebooks account on Twitter.

Moldbug Ebooks

An Open Letter to Open-Minded Progressives

An Open Letter to Open-Minded Progressives

This open letter challenges everything you thought you knew about politics and history. We all like to think our minds are open—but is yours open enough to proceed?

A Gentle Introduction to Unqualified Reservations

A Gentle Introduction to Unqualified Reservations

This provocative volume contains a concentrated dose of Unqualified Reservations, the ultimate political Red Pill. Are you ready to escape the Matrix? Let’s see how deep the rabbit hole goes…

How Dawkins Got Pwned

How Dawkins Got Pwned

Discover how scientist Richard Dawkins got pwned by Universalism, the world’s most powerful parasitic memeplex. The worst part: you could be infected, too.

Moldbug on Carlyle

Moldbug on Carlyle

Challenge your political preconceptions with Mencius Moldbug’s controversial introduction to the ultimate reactionary, Victorian writer and historian Thomas Carlyle.

Patchwork: A Political System for the 21st Century

Patchwork: A Political System for the 21st Century

Enter Patchwork, Mencius Moldbug’s shocking vision of a political system for the 21st century. Patchwork’s innovative design, which relies on sovereign joint-stock republics with cryptographic governance, brings the promise of clean streets, negligible crime, invincible robot armies, and world peace.

Technology, Communism and the Brown Scare

Technology, Communism and the Brown Scare

Technology is but the latest in a long line of industries to fall victim to the Brown Scare—America’s ginormous, never-ending, profoundly insane witch-hunt for fascists under the bed. Why does the Brown Scare grow even as its enemies shrink? Hint: America is a communist country.

Sam Altman Is Not a Blithering Idiot

Sam Altman Is Not a Blithering Idiot

Many parts of all, and all parts of some, American cities that were thriving in 1950, have now fallen into chaos and ruin. Meanwhile, Palo Alto is full of beautiful young people adoring the perfectly antialiased individual subpixels of their new Retina iPads. Which of these phenomena is more relevant? Which is the narrative, which the distraction? And what would Sam Altman think?

Full UR Archive