As we all know, personality conflicts among us is a terrible plague on our house. To the extent possible, and even a little bit more than that, we should avoid them. We should absolutely never write about them either. Of course, in my case it’s different. More than an attack per se, I would like to warn readers of this publication about my experiences with Thomas Fleming and Chronicles magazine.
In early 2014, Chronicles launched a new and finally bearable website. In tandem with this, they wanted to take on new, particularly younger, bloggers for the site. At the time I was writing under a name that was popping up with reasonable regularity on American Renaissance, Alternative Right, etc., and had struck up a correspondence with another dissident who had started writing for Chronicles. He reached out to me about blogging for the site and I was flattered. I told him that I did not write under my real name, and had written for sites a great deal more racial than the crowd at the Rockford Institute (the nonprofit that puts out Chronicles) were generally comfortable with. He told me not to worry, and that if I was interested he would talk to Thomas Fleming, the editor.
Here I suppose I should qualify and explain my interest in Chronicles to begin with. Yes, it has its faults: repetitiveness, overly-religious, and insufficiently racial being the big three. But it also has serious strengths: Chilton Williamson Jr. is a masterful writer, and his regular column “What’s Wrong With the World” is invariably a pleasure to read; Srdja Trifkovic’s foreign policy analysis is always excellent; and historian and American Renaissance conference regular Roger McGrath is a frequent contributor. I will also admit, there was a strong allure of writing for a publication that had been around for so long, and I liked the idea of following in the footsteps of Sam Francis, and of maybe getting printed in a non-digital magazine.
Dr. Fleming got in touch with me, and said he liked my writing and would love to take me on. So far so good. Then he said he needed to know my real name. I mulled it over, asked for advice from some fellow dissidents, and wrote back saying I couldn’t do that, and that I was sorry if that meant I could not write for him, but that was just the way things were. Much to my surprise, he wrote back to say: fine, no real name needed, just pick-up a Chronicles-only name.
I was okay with that, but then the problems started rolling in. There would be no payment, which was alright (after all, Radix doesn’t pay me), but I would have to write once a week — which was not so great. Then I learned Dr. Fleming does not know how to use Google Drive, which was an enormous hassle as I did not own a computer at the time. Then he informed me that I was no longer (as I had in the past) allowed to link to “racialist” websites like SBPDL, AmRen, and the like. Looking back, at that point I should have just stopped writing and cut ties. But I foolishly kept toeing the line — for reasons that now escape me.
After a few months, I got busy, and wrote in to say I would be taking a break for a while. I was informed that this was no problem, but a few months later, I was back on the site and realized my name was no longer listed anywhere. So I searched my name on the site and nothing came up. I dug up an old link to one of my pieces and it led to an error page. I had been purged. I and I was so outraged at my deletion that I went through the indignity of writing to Dr. Fleming asking for an explanation. Nothing. So I waited two months and wrote again, and again got no response. Somehow I managed to anger Thomas Fleming so much that he deleted all the writing I did for free for his new site and then stopped talking to me whatsoever.
Sure, it can all be found on the WayBack Machine, and Alternative Right re-published on piece, (on that note, anyone is free to republish anything of mine) but Dr. Fleming’s petty purge should not go unreported.
In the end, it may not matter though. As of this writing, the Rockford Institute does not even have a website, even if Chronicles got a new one. Their once famous and well-attended annual “John Randolph Club” has had a pitiful two public gathering since 2012.
Meanwhile, NPI is publishing books regularly, and the New Century Foundation (which is behind American Renaissance) just released another book. Both have regular conferences as well, as do other groups and figures that have fallen out with Chronicles: The Ludwig von Mises Institute has plenty of gatherings and schools, Hans-Hermann Hoppe has annual “Property and Freedom Society” conferences, and Paul Gottfried (yes, for all his paleo-inclinations, he got the ax from Dr. Fleming a few years ago) has the H.L. Mencken Club.
Even now that Dr. Fleming has stepped down, Chilton Williamson Jr. has informed me he is not interested in re-posting anything I wrote, and Tom Piatak won’t even respond to my e-mails.
So I have to say: stay clear.