Bronies are young men who like a traditionalist society with a divine monarch. Yes, ok, the society is one of magical ponies, but it is still one of the most subversively traditionalist media productions to come out in at least a generation.
Neoreactionaries are young men who like a Jewish atheist who enjoys reading old books and blogging about them in long, rambly posts.
Equestria, the world of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic (aka MLP:FIM) is a highly ordered, functional and traditionalist society. It’s also a show where the friendships of six magical ponies turn out to be realistic in a way that is utterly forbidden in public discourse.
Yes, young men have to look for healthy friendship models in a kids’ show aimed mostly at eight year old girls.
Even this is better than the neoreactionaries, though. They like long, tedious essays that say much and mean little. They are too in love with their own pontificating to appreciate the magic of friendship, or the joys of traditional gender roles lived out in the show.
Bronies, particularly the ones with a conservative or libertarian bent, sometimes are, if not Christian, sympathetic to Christianity. Bronies see the strong, loving, absolute monarch that Celestia is to her ponyfolk and have their eyes opened to the True Divine, Our Lord.
The neoreaction doesn’t appear to offer that opportunity. If anything, its attachment to the bio-determinism known as HBD (short for “human biodiversity”, but in practice just means “blacks are stupid but run fast, Asians are uncreative grinds and whites who comment on HBD blogs are the perfect mix of clever and creative”) leads people away from God and towards a materialistic, instrumentalist view of the world and the people within it.
Bronies like a world in which all ponies have places and know them. Major plots revolve around the refusal of individuals to accept their place and how this upsets order, which must ultimately be restored. Equestria is in fact a reactionary paradise. Harmonious order is placed above mere efficiency. Thus the Unicorns, who could do the work of the Pegasi and the Earth Ponies due to superior magic abilities, do not usurp those ponies’ roles, but instead are content with the inefficiency of manual crop harvesting and the like. This same world contains a true monarchy that is neither questioned nor challenged by the populace.
The neoreaction is alllll about challenging any and all forms of government, despite their claims of being reactionary and monarchy-sympathetic. They can’t even settle on which form of government to support reactionarily. Not very traditionalist of them.
While Bronies like a world in which stereotypes are broadly true, those stereotypes never interfere with people’s ability to fulfill their functions in a healthy society.
Neoreactionaries are into stereotypes that aren’t broadly true, particularly regarding women, and which would interfere with people’s ability to fulfill a proper social role in a restored, healthy traditional society.
Equestria may be a child’s world, but it is rich with deep traditional wisdom and clearly limned gender divisions that nopony feels compelled to subvert. Bronies are young men who gravitate to female beings behaving as properly ordered female beings, not shabby caricatures of maleness. This is a perfectly sensible way to be.
Bronies are, in other words, watching and enjoying a program that is surprisingly and very practically conservative. They are learning the bare beginnings of what it is to live normally, of what the trade-offs are in traditional living. This guy, while somewhat over the top, really gets that traditional aspect of the show.
The neoreaction, with its grandiose proclamations of a “Dark Enlightenment” and strong attachment to individualism (codified in their attachment to a single dude as the font of all knowledge), is very nearly anti-traditional despite its abstract appeals to “traditionalism” as a canard.
This was brought to you by some interesting recent commentary on the awesomeness of Bronies at The American Conservative and a bit of chitchat from crunchy con pundit Rod Dreher about the movement known as the neoreaction a few days later.
I like MLP: FIM, it’s one of the few things I am comfortable letting my children watch at really any age. I love the way female power is feminine and the way men and women complement each other rather than jockey for each others’ spheres. Domesticity is valued, and so is friendship that is concurrent with but not above familial ties. It’s a very rich program, full of hidden depths and traditional models aplenty. So Bronies represent young men who are seeing more clearly the correct forms than the deformation the neoreaction promotes.
In short, Bronies and Equestria rule and neoreactionaries drool. And I didn’t have to use five thousand words to say it. This picture is worth another thousand though: