Sunday, February 21, 2016

The Banality of Evil

Eichmann in Jersualem

58 comments:

FreeThinke said...

Christ! She sounds just like Lotte Lehnya.

That's not good. However, she is at least far less unattractive –– or is this just a "Theater Piece?"

Jew! Jew! Jew! jew! Jew! Jew! Jew! Jew! JEW!

Will their overweening sense of self importance, pathological self-absorbtion and resultant paranoia never end?

I would not feel and write as I do if any of them EVER –– even ONCE –– acknowledged that not only SIX-MILLIONS Jews perished in the Death Camps, but at least TWELVE-MILLION non-Jews did as well.

And what of the HUNDREDS of MILLIONS of OTHERS worldwide who were killed, dismembered, displaced, impoverished, widowed, orphaned, made chronically ill, driven insane –– lives forever blighted, many totally ruined in the titanic struggle?

Do THEY not COUNT as well?


Sorry but this endless self-righteous glorying in VICTIMHOOD is DISGUSTING.

[Go ahead, Gert. I'm waiting.]

Thersites said...

This is a scene from an English film about an episode in her life covering the Eichmann trial in Jerusalem.

And were you to read the companion piece, you would see how "aware" of the Jewish hypocrisy in the trial of Eichmann she was.

She had been a student of Heidegger and lover. Heidegger's entire reputation was forever sullied by his association with and defense of the NAZI's.

FreeThinke said...

I would neve even DREAM of defending the Nazi's, although I believe I have some understanding of how they came to power [Most of it was the fault of the victors in WWI and the resultant Treaty of Versailles].

Looking back I wonder if humanity will ever be able to repair the damage done by so many disparate elements in the twentieth century that seem to have united in some bizarre fashion AGAINST the best interests of mankind.

A pretty good case could be made for blaming the Industrial Revolution, most of the Great "labor-saving" Inventions, and the rise of a vulgar. shallow, obscenely selfish and grasping popular culture for the horror that befell.

For instance, if it weren't for the Wright Brothers, aerial bombing raids, Pearl Harbor, the London Blitz, Dresden, the delivery of A-Bombs over Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and the partitioning of Germany at Yalta, could never have happened, nicht wahr? ;-)

If you look back far enough, you'd find we have to blame on Eve.

Thersites said...

from Arendt's paper:

Yet no matter how consistently the judges shunned the limelight, there they were, seated at the top of the raised platform, facing the audience as from the stage in a play. The audience was supposed to represent the whole world, and in the first few weeks it indeed consisted chiefly of newspapermen and magazine writers who had flocked to Jerusalem from the four corners of the earth. They were to watch a spectacle as sensational as the Nuremberg Trials, only this time "the tragedy of Jewry as a whole was to be the central concern." For "if we shall charge [Eichmann] also with crimes against non-Jews, . . . this is" not because he committed them, but, surprisingly, "because we make no ethnic distinctions." Certainly a remarkable sentence for a prosecutor to utter in his opening speech; it proved to be the key sentence in the case for the prosecution. For this case was` built on what the Jews had suffered, not on what Eichmann had done. And, according to Mr. Hausner, this distinction would be immaterial, because "there was only one man who had been concerned almost entirely with the Jews, whose business had been their destruction, whose role in the establishment of the iniquitous regime had been limited to them. That was Adolf Eichmann." Was it not logical to bring before the court all the facts of Jewish suffering (which, of course, were never in dispute) and then look for evidence which in one way or another would connect Eichmann with what had happened? The Nuremberg Trials, where the defendants had been "indicted for crimes against the members of various nations," had left the Jewish tragedy out of account for the simple reason that Eichmann had not been there. Did Mr. Hausner really believe the Nuremberg Trials would have paid greater attention to the fate of the Jews if Eichmann had been in the dock? Hardly. Like almost everybody else in Israel, he believed that only a Jewish court could render justice to Jews, and that it was the business of Jews to sit in judgment on their enemies. Hence the almost universal hostility in Israel to the mere mention of an international court which would have indicted Eichmann, not for crimes "against the Jewish people," but for crimes against mankind committed on the body of the Jewish people.

Thersites said...

(cont)

Hence the strange boast: "We make no ethnic distinctions," which sounded less strange in Israel, where rabbinical law rules the personal status of Jewish citizens, with the result that no Jew can marry a non-Jew; marriages concluded abroad are recognized, but children of mixed marriages are legally bastards (children of Jewish parentage born out of wedlock are legitimate), and if one happens to have a non-Jewish mother he can neither be married nor buried. The outrage in this state of affairs has become more acute since 1953, when a sizable portion of jurisdiction in matters of family law was handed over to the secular courts. Women can now inherit property and in general enjoy equal status with men. Hence it is hardly respect for the faith or the power of the fanatically religious minority that prevents the government of Israel from substituting secular jurisdiction for rabbinical law in matters of marriage and divorce. Israeli citizens, religious and nonreligious, seem agreed upon the desirability of having a law which prohibits intermarriage, and it is chiefly for this reason - as Israeli officials outside the courtroom were willing to admit - that they are also agreed upon the undesirability of a written constitution in which such a law would embarrassingly have to be spelled out. ("The argument against civil marriage is that it would split the House of Israel, and would also separate Jews of this country from Jews of the Diaspora," as Philip Gillon recently put it in Jewish Frontier.) Whatever the reasons, there certainly was something breathtaking in the naiveté with which the prosecution denounced the infamous Nuremberg Laws of 1935, which had prohibited intermarriage and sexual intercourse between Jews and Germans. The better informed among the correspondents were well aware of the irony, but they did not mention it in their reports. This, they figured, was not the time to tell the Jews what was wrong with the laws and institutions of their own country.

Thersites said...

No, the problem with the Eichmann trial was that the "system" was the "evil", and Eichmann merely one who operated within it. And so the issue as to fairness must also take into account the structure of the "Israeli" system of jurisprudence.... that kidnapped Eichmann and returned him to Israel.

Thersites said...

I suppose that the entire Eichmann episode is a critique of ideology by proxy.

Gert said...

I suppose that the entire Eichmann episode is a critique of ideology by proxy.

In a nutshell. The appropriation of the Holocaust as 'the Crime against the Jews' is a Zionist problem, not a Jewish one. See Netanyahu's constant referring to Auschwitz and early Zionists to enemies (like Arafat) as 'Hitler'.

But there's not an 'anti-Zionist' Jew that I know of who doesn't lament that sorry state of affairs. See e.g. Udi Aloni.

-FJ said...

Yes ideology is a two-way street... the Zionists have their own demons to contend with.

The greatest "idealist" Eichmann ever encountered among the Jews was Dr. Rudolf Kastner,with whom he negotiated during the Jewish deportations from Hungary and with whom he came to an agreement that he, Eichmann, would permit the "illegal" departure of a few thousand Jews to Palestine (the trains were in fact guarded by German police) in exchange for "quiet and order" in the camps from which hundreds of thousands were shipped to Auschwitz. The few thousand saved by the agreement, prominent Jews and members of the Zionist youth organizations, were, in Eichmann's words, "the best biological material." Dr. Kastner, as Eichmann understood it, had sacrificed his fellow-Jews to his "idea," and this was as it should be. Judge Benjamin Halevi, one of the three judges at Eichmann's trial, had been in charge of the Kastner trial in Israel, at which Kastner had to defend himself for his cooperation with Eichmann and other high-ranking Nazis; in Halevi's opinion, Kastner had "sold his soul to the devil. " Now that the devil himself was in the dock he turned out to be an "idealist," and though it may be hard to believe, it is quite possible that the one who sold his soul had also been an "idealist."

Gert said...

The Kastner affair is only one example of pre-independence Zionism’s collusion with Nazism (as well as with other non-Nazi prominent anti-Semites). There are many others. Those on the ‘Left’ of early Zionism (like David Ben Gurion) have been described as Stalinists, a kind of Socialist Nationalists. To them everything was a means to an end.

Re the several other Holocausts that took place around that time and in that area, I would warmly recommend Timothy Snyder’s Bloodlands (but 'light reading' it does not make). It was in fact a moderate Zionist Jew who recommended it to me, further evidence that not all Jews (and not even all Zionist Jews) are enamoured with making the Holocaust central to Zionism.

The Holocaust was of course the game changer in one important sense: prior to these events the vast majority of Jews (Diaspora or even ME) were not Zionists and the kvetchful song ‘Next year in Jerusalem’ not part of some nationalistic plan. Even after the Holocaust there’s evidence of Zionist dirty tricks campaigns to try and divert displaced Jews from their destination of choice (US e.g.) to Palestine instead and how many were treated as dirt at first.

Zionism isn’t unique in that respect but it is an interesting case in point of how a nationalism is built largely on mythology.

I’m not opposed to Israel’s existence but do believe its creation was one of the 20th Century’s biggest ‘mistakes’. But is it a mistake if you do it on purpose?

-FJ said...

If the audience at the trial was to be the world and the play the huge panorama of Jewish sufferings, the reality was falling short of expectations and purposes. The journalists remained faithful for not much more than two weeks,after which the audience changed drastically. It was now supposed to consist of Israelis, of those who were too young to know the story or, as in the case of Oriental Jews, had never been told it. The trial was supposed to show them what itmeant to live among non-Jews, to convince them that only in Israel could a Jew be safe and live an honorable life. (For correspondents, the lesson was spelled out in a little booklet on Israel's legal system, which was handed to the press. Its author, Doris Lankin, cites a Supreme Court decision whereby two fathers who had "abducted their children and brought them to Israel" were directed to send them back to their mothers who, living abroad, had a legal right to their custody. And this, adds the author - no less proud of such strict legality than Mr. Hausner of his willingness to prosecute murder even when the victims were non-Jews - "despite the fact that to send the children back to maternal custody and care would be committing them to waging an unequal struggle against the hostile elements in the Diaspora.") But in this audience there were hardly any young people, and it did not consist of Israelis as distinguished from Jews. It was filled with "survivors," with middle-aged and elderly people, immigrants from Europe, like myself, who knew by heart all there was to know, and who were in no mood to learn any lessons and certainly did not need this trial to draw their own conclusions.

---

-FJ said...

Thus, the trial never became a play, but the show Ben-Gurion had had in mind to begin with did take place, or, rather, the "lessons" he thought should be taught to Jews and Gentiles, to Israelis and Arabs, in short, to the whole world. These lessons to be drawn from an identical show were meant to be different for the different recipients. Ben-Gurion had outlined them before the trial started, in a number of articles designed to explain why Israel had kidnaped the accused. There was the lesson to the non-Jewish world: "We want to establish before the nations of the world how millions of people, because they happened to be Jews, and one million babies, because they happened to be Jewish babies, were murdered by the Nazis." Or, in the words of Davar, the organ of Mr. Ben-Gurion's Mapai party: "Let world opinion know this, that not only Nazi Germany was responsible for the destruction of six million Jews of Europe." Hence, again in Ben-Gurion's own words, "We want the nations of the world to know . . . and they should be ashamed." The Jews in the Diaspora were to remember how Judaism, "four thousand years old, with its spiritual creations and its ethical strivings, its Messianic aspirations," had always faced "a hostile world," how the Jews had degenerated until they went to their death like sheep, and how only the establishment of a Jewish state had enabled Jews to hit back, as Israelis had done in the War of Independence, in the Suez adventure, and in the almost daily incidents on Israel's unhappy borders. And if the Jews outside Israel had to be shown the difference between Israeli heroism and Jewish submissive meekness, there was a lesson for those inside Israel too: "the generation of Israelis who have grown up since the holocaust" were in danger of losing their ties with the Jewish people and, by implication, with their own history. "It is necessary that our youth remember what happened to the Jewish people. We want them to know the most tragic facts in our history." Finally, one of the motives in bringing Eichmann to trial was "to ferret out other Nazis - for example, the connection between the Nazis and some Arab rulers.

-FJ said...

Eichmann's non-defense:

Hence, no report on the Eichmann case, perhaps as distinguished from the Eichmann trial, could be complete without paying some attention to certain facts that are well enough known but that Dr. Servatius chose to ignore. This is especially true of Eichmann's muddled general outlook and ideology with respect to "the Jewish question." During cross-examination, he told the presiding judge that in Vienna he "regarded the Jews as opponents with respect to whom a mutually acceptable, a mutually fair solution had to be found. . . . That solution I envisaged as putting firm soil under their feet so that they would have a place of their own, soil of their own. And I was working in the direction of that solution joyfully. I cooperated in reaching such a solution, gladly and joyfully, because it was also the kind of solution that was approved by movements among the Jewish people themselves, and I regarded this as the most appropriate solution to this matter." This was the true reason they had all "pulled together," the reason their work had been "based upon mutuality." It was in the interest of the Jews, though perhaps not all Jews understood this, to get out of the country; "one had to help them, one had to help these functionaries to act, and that's what I did." If the Jewish functionaries were "idealists," that is, Zionists, he respected them, "treated them as equals," listened to all their "requests and complaints and applications for support," kept his "promises" as far as he could - "People are inclined to forget that now." Who but he, Eichmann, had saved hundreds of thousands of Jews? What but his great zeal and gifts of organization had enabled them to escape in time? True, he could not foresee at the time the coming Final Solution, but he had saved them, that was a "fact." (In an interview given in this country during the trial, Eichmann's son told the same story to American reporters. It must have been a family legend.)

Eichmann was a Zionist.

-FJ said...

A 'mistake' that both the Jews and the Germans supported.

Gert said...

Eichmann was a Zionist.

Today, as much as back then, many avowed Zionists are anti-Semites.

It makes perfect sense of course: if one believes too many Jews in a country endangers that country (in whatever way) then supporting a Zionist/Jewish plantation is the answer to one’s perceived problems.

Nearly all the European luminaries Theodor Herzl and co approached for support for their Zionist project were of that persuasion: ‘not too many Jews here, please!’ A solution to the ‘Jewish question’ by other means than sheer brutal genocide.

Remember how general assclown, devoted Zionist and ‘journalist’ Tom Friedman described Israel as ‘Yad Vashem with an airforce’?

Speedy G said...

There's no doubt that the Madagascar Plan would have been preferable to the "Final Solution".

-FJ said...

...but since the Germans lost the Battle for Britain, they were forced to re-think their "Jewish Problem".

-FJ said...

o/t - This doesn't bode well for DiEM25, IMO. Walking away from Liberal Capitalism, be you Greek, Ukrainian, or Venezuelan doesn't seem to be an option, Democracy or NOT.

-FJ said...

On a more topical note...

Gert said...

This rather lackadaisical attitude of Zionism toward anti-Semitism starts quite early, with Herzl and (Chaim) Weizmann. From ‘Zionism in the Age of the Dictators’ (Brenner):

From the French Revolution to the unification of Germany and Italy it appeared that the future foretold the continuing emancipation of Jewry in the wake of the further development of capitalism and its liberal and modernist values. Even the Russian pogroms of the 1880s could be seen as the last gasp of a dying feudal past, rather than a harbinger of things to come. Yet by 1896, when Theodor Herzl published his Jewish State, such an optimistic scenario could no longer be realistically envisioned. In 1895 he personally had seen the Parisian mob howling for the death of Dreyfus. That same year he heard the wild cheers of middle-class Vienna as they greeted the anti-Semitic Karl Lueger after he had swept the election for burgomeister. Born amidst a wave of defeats for the Jews, not only in backward Russia, but in the very centres of industrial Europe, modern Zionism's pretensions were the noblest conceivable: the redemption of the downtrodden Jewish people in their own land. But from the very beginning the movement represented the conviction of a portion of the Jewish middle class that the future belonged to the Jew-haters, that anti-Semitism was inevitable, and natural. Firmly convinced that anti-Semitism could not be beaten, the new World Zionist Organisation never fought it. Accommodation to anti-Semitism—and pragmatic utilisation of it for the purpose of obtaining a Jewish state—became the central stratagems of the movement, and it remained loyal to its earliest conceptions down to and through the Holocaust. In June l895, in his very first entry in his new Zionist Diary, Herzl laid down this fixed axiom of Zionism:
In Paris, as I have said, I achieved a freer attitude toward anti-Semitism, which I now began to understand historically and to pardon. Above all, I recognized the emptiness and futility of trying to 'combat' anti-Semitism.1

In the severest sense, Herzl was a man of his time and class; a monarchist who believed the best ruler 'un bon tyran'. 2 His Jewish State baldly proclaimed: 'Nor are the present-day nations really fit for democracy, and I believe they will become ever less fit for it… I have no [2] faith in the political virtue of our people, because we are no better than the rest of modern man. 3

His universal pessimism caused him to misjudge totally the political environment of late-nineteenth-century Western Europe. In particular, Herzl misunderstood the Dreyfus case . The secrecy of the trial, and Dreyfus’s soldierly insistence on his innocence, convinced many that an injustice was done. The case aroused a huge surge of Gentile support. Kings discussed it and feared for the sanity of France; Jews in remote hamlets in the Pripet Marches prayed for Emile Zola. The intellectuals of France rallied to Dreyfus's side. The socialist movement brought over the working people. The right wing of French society was discredited, the army stained, the Church disestablished. Anti-Semitism in France was driven into isolation lasting until Hitler’s conquest. Yet Herzl, the most famous journalist in Vienna, did nothing to mobilise even one demonstration on behalf of Dreyfus. When he discussed the matter, it was always as a horrible example and never as a rallying cause. In 1899 the outcry compelled a retrial. A court martial affirmed the captain's guilt, 5 to 2, but found extenuating circumstances and reduced his sentence to ten years. But Herzl saw only defeat and depreciated the significance of the vast Gentile sympathy for the Jewish victim.

Gert said...

As regards DiEM25, for sure it'll be an uphill struggle.

-FJ said...

I suspect that even if successful, DiEM25 will simply thrust the "American" economic dilemna (progressivism/size) upon you. Of course, it will take you another 20 years to recognize corporate/government "size" as an economic "problem" to be dealt with.

FreeThinke said...

Prolixity, also known in some circles as logorrhea, rarely-if-ever constitutes profundity.

That said whatever happened to the article entitled MARCO'S MILLIONAIRES, which has been listed as being present at this blog since early this morning?.

-FJ said...

...for if "Zionism" (nationalism) wasn't a "solution" for the Jews, it won't likely be a very good one for "Europe," either. ;)

-FJ said...

@ FT - Sorry, I moved it over to my political blog. I had never originally intended to post it here

Gert said...

for if "Zionism" (nationalism) wasn't a "solution" for the Jews, it won't likely be a very good one for "Europe," either.

Jest all you like but as the late Tony Judt once said: 'Zionism is an idea that came too late'. When Europe around the beginning of the 20th Century was turning its back on the concept of the 'ethno-state', there were the Zionists wanting to create one in almost the purest sense of the word! ;-)

Gert said...

Dirty Tricks, part Umpteen:

Yedioth: Soviet Jews were cheated into immigrating to Israel

At the end of the 1980s, Israel found itself facing a problem: the Soviet Union was about to collapse, and its multitude of Jews about to become free. But, alas, Israel held no interest for them, and they wanted to emigrate to welfare countries. Embarrassingly enough, Jewish organizations did their best to aid the “noshrim” (roughly, “those who fall by the wayside”), as they were called in Israel due to their efforts to avoid their Zionist-mandated fate. In a successful covert operation, Israel closed the options to the emigrants, and forced most of them to reach it.

This is the fascinating expose published yesterday in “7 Yamim”, Yediot’s weekly magazine supplement. Yasha Kadmi, who would become the Chief of Nativ, the clandestine organization infiltrating the Soviet bloc, published a book in which he explains how the system worked. Kadmi, who at the time wrote a secret memo saying that if Soviet Jews would be allowed freedom of choice they will not choose Israel, received official sanction from then prime minister, Yizhak Shamir, for the operation.

It went like this: The goal was to prevent Russian Jews from reaching Vienna, from which they could make it to the US as refugees. So Kadmi gathered Jews wishing to emigrate to Moscow, and met with them after 17:00, the time the Austrian embassy stopped working. He then gave them a plane ticket to either Romania or Hungary, which they had to use immediately, preferably that night. Kadmi has already made a deal with the two dictatorships, who would in turn make certain no Soviet Jew had the option of boarding a plane to anywhere but Israel. Often, they didn’t even have the chance to leave the airport. Such deals with the Romanian despot Nicolae Ceausescu – “dear departed Ceausescu, peace be upon him”, as he is described by Kadmi – were common; throughout the 1970s and 1980s he literally sold Jews to Israel. “7 Yamim” summed it thus: “No [Austrian] embassy? No way to reach Vienna. No way to rwach Vienna? No America. So what’s left? What Kadmi gives”.

Kadmi’s conscience’s bothers him a bit, but he is still certain that’s how things should have turned out. Which is not surprising, given he is a Zionist. The Zionist movement always put itself and its interests before those of the Jewish people. In the 1930s, it did everything possible to derail the 1938 Avian Conference, which tried to find place for desperate Jews trying to escape Hitler; the Zionist leaders were very worried, lest those Jews find some other place to live in, aside from Palestine. When the despot of the Dominican Republic, Rafael Trujillo, wanted to allow 100,000 European Jews to emigrate to the Republic, the Jewish Agency did everything possible to torpedo the plan. Ben Gurion’s macabre saying of the Second World War – that if he had to choose between saving a million Jew children by sending them to Britain or half that number, by sending them to Palestine, he would choose the latter – is well known.

Gert said...

Now, not wanting to come across as ‘always wanting the Last Word’ ( ;-) ), it’s clear that the commonly held views among Zionists and very naive fellow travellers that Zionism is all about ‘combating anti-Semitism and looking out for the Jews’ doesn’t even remotely add up. The term anti-Semitism is mainly used to try and denounce anyone who deviates more than a nanometer from the “righteous” path to the Altar of Zionism and Zionist victimhood. Real anti-Semites like John Hagee e.g., get a royal free pass and a standing ovation at AIPAC. US politicians like Ron Paul, who have the temerity to plot a slightly more independent course vis-a-vis the US/Israel relationship, are dragged through the mud, slandered into the ground as ‘Jew haters’ or ‘Jew obsessives’ (at which point even I become anti-PC, LOL).

-FJ said...

I agree that the "ethno-state" is a concept whose time has long past. That being said, a society does require a certain LiteKultur around which to coalesce and function. It cannot develop with open borders or it becomes a Deluezian nightmare of a rhizome, with constant deterritorialization and reterritorialization, of Jackals and Arabs.

btw - You do know that I am Inspector AIPac, don't you? ;)

Gert said...

btw - You do know that I am Inspector AIPac, don't you? ;)

Of course I know that. I even knicked one of your images for my own blog!

Re ethno-states, in the case of Britain that would have become unsustainable after the formation of the Union. There, three rather distinct (not mention perpetually warring) 'ethnicities' had to be brought under one roof and a new Nationalism made up on the hoof, just like that!. And contrary to what a few imbeciles believe, these isles where never demographically homogeneous.

So close these borders all you like, just make sure you don't end up in a prison of your own making! ;-)

Gert said...

As regards Leitkultur, I don’t dispute that nation states benefit from loosely defined common values. But these too change over time and even w/o the influence of demographic composition.

And every time I hear a British luminary expound on a list of 'British Values' what I really hear are... universal values!

In Britain, during my ‘short’ stay (of near 20 years now) I’ve seen attitudes to gays (and sexuality more broadly) change quite dramatically. It’s also less of an ‘inherited class’ based society than ever before. Regardless of any value judgements one can make about these changes, one thing’s for sure: changing demographics did not bring them about.

FreeThinke said...

"Regardless of any value judgements (sic) one can make about these changes, one thing’s for sure: changing demographics did not bring them about."

How could you be absolutely sure of that?

When chocolate meets coffee, both merge into MOCHA. Not an unpleasant thing, mocha, BUT coffee no longer is coffee, and chocolate no longer is chocolate once the two merge.

I believe we've already reviewed the effects butter cream frosting laced with pureed garlic and Roquefort cheese would have on a chocolate layer cake. Not as bad as chicken pieces battered in steel filings and fried in used crankcase oil, of course, but the effect would be profound all the same.

So, you've only been living in Britain for twenty years, eh, Mr. Meyers, and Wales at that? Dare I ask from what country you originated? Was some form of English your first language?

Are you in sympathy with the Scottish separatist movement, or separatist movements in general?

You seem to want to believe that ethnicity coupled with the results of lifelong differences in acculturation have no effect on the essential sameness (i.e. "equality") of human beings. How could you embrace such a notion when wanton cruelty, violent conflict and endless grief between Self and Other have been the rule, not the exception since the beginning of time?

I ask for your views out of honest curiosity nothing else.

-FJ said...

No, it's not so much demographics as education in "support" of changing demographics that has brought these "changed values" about. The "core - Western Civ" curriculum died by the end of the Sixties. And THAT was all about inclusion of formerly "excluded" demographics". The "right" way to go would have been to maintain our Western Civ "Enlightenment" values, and convince the other demographics that these values were and are "Universal". THAT is the "noble lie".

“I sit with Shakespeare, and he winces not. Across the color line I move arm and arm with Balzac and Dumas, where smiling men and welcoming women glide in gilded halls. From out of the caves of evening that swing between the strong-limbed Earth and the tracery of stars, I summon Aristotle and Aurelius and what soul I will, and they come all graciously with no scorn nor condescension. So, wed with Truth, I dwell above the veil. Is this the life you grudge us, O knightly America? Is this the life you long to change into the dull red hideousness of Georgia? Are you so afraid lest peering from this high Pisgah, between Philistine and Amalekite, we sight the Promised Land?”

― W.E.B. Du Bois, "The Souls of Black Folk"

Gert said...

FT:

If we’re specifically talking about sexual mores, then in it’s fair to say that most immigrants are more ‘conservative’ about these matters than the ‘indigenous’ population, so it is unlikely that the former would have supported the more ‘permissive’ society.

I’m of Belgian descent and have been reading, speaking and writing English since I was about 10.

I’m totally opposed to a break-up of the Union: it’s a thoroughly stupid and useless idea.

As regards conflicts between ‘self and other’, most are the result of colonialism/imperialism. As the (hardly Marxist, but sorry FT, another “dirty Joooo”) Jacob Bronowski wrote: ‘war is organised theft’ (*).


(*) Full quote: But war, organized war, is not a human instinct. It is a highly planned and cooperative form of theft. And that form of theft began 10,000 years ago when the harvesters of wheat accumulated a surplus and the nomads rose out of the desert to rob them of what they themselves could not provide.

Gert said...

FJ:

As far as I’m concerned we HAVE maintained the "core - Western Civ" curriculum. What the refugee crisis shows however is that we’re willing to sell these values down the river at the merest sight of perceived ‘barbarians’.

The US’s response of course has been even more shameful: always willing to meddle lethally in the ME but completely opposed to facing the consequences of its destructive handiwork. Greater hypocrisy is hard to find.

beamish said...

I think we do ourselves a disservice when we try to be nice and include third world Islamic countries like Britain and France in the category of "Western Civilization."

Gert said...

As regards assimilation and the inculcating of ‘Western values’ into new immigrants, of either legal residents or new ‘non-indigenous’ citizens can only realistically be demanded that they abide by the Laws of their new country. Anything else is a recipe for Thought Police and assorted absurdities.

As a legal resident here, I feel under no obligation to subscribe to ‘British values’ or eat ‘Fish ‘n Chips’ ( ;-) )

I abide by the Law, the rest is meaningless, unenforceable kvetch.

Gert said...

Beamish:

Keep getting hard-ons by dreaming of 'glassing' some ME countries.

Gert said...

The funniest thing about supremacists like Beamish is that they always represent the dumbest of the dumb of their country/race/ideology/whatever.

beamish said...

I know as an American our most deadly fights are against ourselves.

I don't want to glass the Middle East. The EMP would interfere with hours of entertainment in the form of mothers crying over the corpses of their children.

FreeThinke said...


_______ Child Development _______


As sure as prehistoric fish grew legs
and sauntered off the beaches into forests
working up some irregular verbs for their
first conversation, so three-year-old children
enter the phase of name-calling.


Every day a new one arrives and is added
to the repertoire.
You Dumb Goopyhead,
You Big Sewerface, You Poop-on-the-Floor
(a kind of Navaho ring to that one)
they yell from knee level, their little mugs
flushed with challenge.
Nothing Samuel Johnson would bother tossing out
in a pub, but then the toddlers are not trying
to devastate some fatuous Enlightenment hack.


They are just tormenting their fellow squirts
or going after the attention of the giants
way up there with their cocktails and bad breath
talking baritone nonsense to other giants,
waiting to call them names after thanking
them for the lovely party and hearing the door close.


The mature save their hothead invective
for things: an errant hammer, tire chains,
or receding trains missed by seconds,
though they know in their adult hearts,
even as they threaten to banish Timmy to bed
for his appalling behavior,
that their bosses are Big Fatty Stupids,
their wives are Dopey Dopeheads
and that they themselves are Mr.
Sillypants.


~ Billy Collins (1941-) - American Poet Laureate, and winner of countless awards

FreeThinke said...

____________ The Fabulists ____________


When all the world would keep a matter hid,
___ Since Truth is seldom Friend to any crowd,
Men write in fable, as old Aesop did,
___ Jesting at that which none will name aloud.
And this they needs must do, or it will fall
Unless they please they are not heard at all.

When desperate Folly daily laboureth
___ To work confusion upon all we have,
When diligent Sloth demandeth Freedom's death,
___ And banded Fear commandeth Honour's grave--
Even in that certain hour before the fall,
Unless men please they are not heard at all.

Needs must all please, yet some not all for need,
___ Needs must all toil, yet some not all for gain,
But that men taking pleasure may take heed.
___ Whom present toil shall snatch from later pain.
Thus some have toiled, but their reward was small
Since, though they pleased, they were not heard at all.

This was the lock that lay upon our lips,
___ his was the yoke that we have undergone,
Denying us all pleasant fellowships
___ As in our time and generation.
Our pleasures unpursued age past recall,
And for our pains--we are not heard at all.

What man hears aught except the groaning guns?
___ What man heeds aught save what each instant brings?
When each man's life all imaged life outruns,
___ What man shall pleasure in imaginings?
So it hath fallen, as it was bound to fall,
We are not, nor we were not, heard at all.


~ Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936)

[NOTE: This poem was written in reference to the First World War - 1914-1918]

-FJ said...

The US’s response of course has been even more shameful: always willing to meddle lethally in the ME but completely opposed to facing the consequences of its destructive handiwork. Greater hypocrisy is hard to find.

We mis-learned from the best. After all, we didn't draw the lines.

-FJ said...

As regards assimilation and the inculcating of ‘Western values’ into new immigrants, of either legal residents or new ‘non-indigenous’ citizens can only realistically be demanded that they abide by the Laws of their new country. Anything else is a recipe for Thought Police and assorted absurdities.

Honor killings, arranged marriages, inter-familial marriages (1st cousins), four wives, female genital mutilation... hence the cry for Shari'a law. Isn't it high time the Brits told their immigrants, "No!"?

Isn't it long past time for "tolerating" these cultural quirks?

-FJ said...

Moslems are re-writing YOUR laws, NOT visa versa.

beamish said...

As I said, there is no room in Western Civilization for third world / turd world Islamic nations like Britain and France.

-FJ said...

IMO, that depends upon whether the likes of Boris Johnson might salvage one or two of them... ;)

-FJ said...

note: Writing in The Guardian, journalist Polly Toynbee for instance referred to him (BoJo) as "Jester, toff, self-absorbed sociopath and serial liar"

Britain's "Berlusconi/ Trump.

Gert said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
beamish said...

I wrote off France, I mean New Algeria years ago.

Gert said...

No contest whatsoever, as long as you don't claim it absolves the US.

Re. the Daily Mail, the former Brownshirt supporters really haven't changed a bit and to see these as the defenders of women's rights or secularism can only cause belly laughs to me.

TDM is a paper that LIES for a living: it sells copy purely by means spectacular, mendacious headlines. It doesn't do journalism, they're the lowest of the low of that 'fallen profession'. I wouldn't wipe my arse on it.

At least The Daily Star has mild entertainment value, if you're into gutter snipers

Gert said...

I meant with regards to British teachers, of course.

Gert said...

Boris is a sometimes entertaining buffoon, born toff and almost a clone of Borodaddy, another one born with a chunk of Empire in his mouth.

Joe Conservative said...

When I joined the Scouts de Venezuela in '65, one of the very first things they did was take us on a snipe hunt. We were told that the best way to catch a snipe was to place our hat over them as they ran by...

Joe Conservative said...

I'm very much into gutter sniping. :)

Gert said...

Joe:

Would a condom work? It seems more appropriate for these pricks.

Joe Conservative said...

Some snipe are bigger than others...

Joe Conservative said...

Coney Island Whitefish are another thing, entirely.