The Coming Civil War

The coming civil war in the West will be fought in the parliaments and the streets, will certainly begin in Europe, and may, one hopes, end there before it spreads.

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Police guard mosque, Ajaccio, Corsica. 25 December, 2015.

There will be fighting between native Europeans and immigrant, largely Muslim populations. The first skirmishes have already started, as in Ajaccio, Corsica on December 25, 2015.

Muslims attack firemen and police. The following day, after a rally in support of their first responders, at which some of the injured appeared, some Corsicans trashed a Mosque. The full security force of the French State, as well as its media and academic components has come down against the protestors and on the side of the immigrants against “Islamophobia.”

Here we see the fissures that will define the conflict. The most important fight will be in the minds of the native European population. Nothing indicates any substantial part of the Muslim population joining the forces of secularism. Rather, they will sit it out while the Europeans, and other Western nations, deicide where they stand. The ruling class has demonstrated that it will not listen, so the choice will come down to acceptance, or resistance.

I see this divide in my own circle of family and friends. In a family of very progressive

Police hold back Corsican demonstrators in front of Arab populated housing project. Saturday, December 26, 2015.

Police hold back Corsican demonstrators in front of Arab populated housing project. Saturday, December 26, 2015.

Obama supporters, one spouse is worried about Islam. The other asked me what I thought about the probability of ISIS terrorism in the US. At the time, I said it was low. Events proved me too optimistic, yet the woman who asked me this question, clearly concerned, will not hear anything against Islam, and is joined in this obduracy by their gay son

I’ve been a little coy with the references here. This is a same sex union. One of the spouses clearly understands that such as she and her family are in the sights of Islam, and while hopeful for “reform” and an ascendance of “moderate Muslims” is reaching out to learn more about the threat.

Yet for her partner and one of their sons it it is as if to criticize Islam is to somehow betray liberal and progressive values. They prefer to support Bernie Sanders and worry about the Koch brothers.

At a Christmas dinner here in Bali with European friends the same division arose, to the point where it was best to pour more – lots more – drinks and calm everyone down. The husband is firmly committed to the European idea, proud of the welfare state. No dependent he, a good earner all his life, he happily pays taxes  in his home country and makes his contributions to social programs. While he shakes his head at the inroads of Islam in Indonesia, he’s always been committed to pluralism, and the idea of a Europe incorporating new strains of ethnicity is something he has, and does support.

Recent events have shaken his confidence that assimilation and integration would take place, bringing a Europe that is still itself but renewed. His wife, however, has seen the videos CNN never shows: the vast columns of young men surging through the European countryside. She is terrified.

They spoke of parents who had always been liberal now sounding “almost racist.”  And being “racist” is the worst thing one can be.

Not long ago, I ran into a British guy I’ve worked with on and off over the years. We never before discussed politics, but as a university educated teacher of English abroad, he’s from a demographic that doesn’t include many Tories.

Out of nowhere, a torrent of rage and despair at what Britain has become, and anger at those who seem to feel that this invasion is payback for the white man’s sins.

Such discussions, I’m sure, are now common between families and friends, in millions of homes. Many will have to go through a wrenching reappraisal of their values, and perhaps make common cause with people at whom they have long looked askance, even despised. A coastal progressive lesbian finds herself agreeing with Franklin Graham; an urbane European finds he may have to agree with the Front Nationale.

It is a realignment I have already gone through, but my change was not quick, nor was it pleasant. I had two immigrant grandparents. I knew many fine immigrants, some legal, some not, and in the 80s supported Reagan’s amnesty. One night, the first Christmas season after the law passed, I found myself in a miles long traffic jam headed North along the Mexican coast, most of the vehicles with California plates, as the newly legalized Mexicans returned from their holidays.  I didn’t mind the delay; I celebrated it, and the change it represented.

I can no longer do so.

Our liberal values have served us well. Recent decades have seen an end to institutionalized discrimination and a vast expansion of opportunity for all. Now superseded by an anti-assimilationist ethos, a denigration of Western Civilization, and the introduction of Islam, they must be reexamined, reformulated, and thoughtfully applied

An increasing number of secular conservatives, liberals, and libertarians have realized is that Islam is antithetical to our values. Thus, having truly bettered our societies by discarding the idea of judging groups of people, we now find that we must judge one group, and find it wanting.

This is a war that will divide families, end friendships, and raise discourse from Sunday dinner discussion to matters of life and death.

Parents against children.

Brother against brother.

Civil war.

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Refuting the Borg: Arguing With Leftists about Islam.

Perhaps you’ve had this experience: You’re discussing historical events or the issues of the day with a liberal or left friend, and suddenly he seizes up. His eyes glaze over, lids droop, and out comes something like,

“Republicans are racists!”

“The science is settled!”

And the show stoppers:

“Sarah Palin!” “Bush!”

They seem to derive the same comfort from this as might a Buddhist chanting the Lotus Sutra. And while you may observe this in a wide range of settings, with men and women of different ages and skin tones, there is a remarkable consistency, down to vocabulary and syntax, in these ejaculations.

borgThis is the voice of the left-progressive- liberal Borg.

On no other issue is the assimilation of these once (perhaps) individual minds into a collective voice more complete than it is in matters pertaining to Islam. More than once I’ve startled friends and acquaintances by pre-echoing what I knew was about to come out of their mouths.

What with beheadings and jihad in the news, I thought I’d provide a public service for those of you who may not have been as aware of the, ahem, problematic nature of Islam, as I have for so long, but are savvy enough to know that whatever liberals in government, academia and the media say about Islam, it has to be a crock.

Islamophobia!

This one is really worthy of no more than an eye roll and gag mime. A phobia is an irrational fear. Any thinking person will know that there are, at the very least, currenst within the Islamic world that are cause for concern.

The term itself was invented by operatives of the Islamic Circle of North America, a Muslim Brotherhood front group, in a quite clever piggyback on the success of “homophobia,” which –given Islam’s attitude towards homosexuality – is worth an ironic giggle.

Racism!

This is the standard condemnation– and, in Europe legally sanctioned to the point of trial, fines and incarceration – of criticism of Islam. It hasn’t gone that far in the U.S. yet, but racists are bad people who leave comments on Stormfront. You wouldn’t want to be one of them, would you?

But, you might ask, Islam is a religion, so what has it got to do with it?. This is another example of leftist induction based on an irrelevant truth. While there are many Muslims, particularly in the Caucasus and former Ottoman territories who would not look any different from the average white Mid-westerners, the majority of them are of non-European stock.

But, so what? Ronald Reagan might have been accused of being a war monger, and mindless anti-communist, a Soviet Union hater, but he wasn’t called anti Russian.

And, secondarily, in the leftist mind, people who don’t like Islam tend to be Republicans, fundamentalist Christians, Reich Wingers, and other undesirables who especially dislike President Obama, and are, therefore, racist.

 The Inquisition!

The burning of heretics at the stake is not a Catholic monopoly

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The burning of heretics seems to have become standard around the8th Century in Eastern and Western Christianity, as well as Islam, but the Inquisition reached its apogee in the High Middle Ages. Here,Knights Templar burned in 1314.

In the earliest days of Islam, during the 7th Century Ridda Wars in Arabia following Mohammed’s death the Caliph Abu Bakar burned many apostates. Death by fire for apostates and heretics were reported among the Ottomans and in the Barbary States well into the 18th Century

The 9th Century Abbasid Caliph al-Ma’mun instituted an inquisition to punish and at times execute those who contested the eternal and uncreated nature of the Koran. The most prominent victim was Mansur al-Hallaj, Persian born Sufi mystic, who was slowly chopped to bits, and his remains then burned in Baghdad in 922.

all hallaj

The execution of al-Hallaj

One can get into a numbers game, but this is fruitless and irrelevant as it is striking that death for apostasy remains uncontested in Islamic jurisprudence, and is applied under the legal codes of a number of Muslim countries today – most prominently, Saudi Arabia.

 

“What about the Crusades?”

Yeah, what about them?

The proximate cause, was, as any Catholic school child, at least, learned in the 50s, was the Seljuk Turks cutting off pilgrimage routes to the Holy land, as well as robbing and murdering pilgrims and local Christians.

The greater cause was Islamic imperialism. One again, going back to my 50s classroom, I remember the history book, the arrows advancing from Arabia across the Middle East and North Africa and into Spain and beyond.

Tours, Charles Martel. Roland at Roncesvalles. Ok, Roland was actually fighting Basques, not Muslims, as the legend has it, and Tours was not a decisive as I was taught, but Islamic forces did reach Central France in the 8th Century and were in the end turned back.

The Near East and North Africa once were Christian, and Greek, Latin and Syriac speaking. Now that vast area is primarily Muslim and Arabic speaking. The Crusaders may then be seen as a belated response to Muslim aggression against the disordered post-Roman West.

martel

Charles Martel, ” The Hammer,” whacking Saracens at Tours(Or maybe Poitiers, not exactly clear),732.

The Wars of the Crescent preceded the wars of the Cross by centuries.

 

Religious inspired terrorism isn’t just a Muslim thing. What about Timothy McVeigh, The IRA and abortion clinic bombings?

While you might not get all these in one sentence, you probably will in a single session as you bat them down one by one. There is more than one thing going on here.

First, is the old moral equivalence game. We saw this back in the Cold War. Segregation and lynching in the American South, for example, while perhaps not equivalent to the Gulag, showed that at heart we were no better.

This is a rhetorical trick which leftists think is pretty slick, but which merely exposes the poverty of their reasoning. State a truth so general as to be useless as a reference point, but which, in the leftist mind, is all encompassing and subsumes your argument to theirs.

If a guy smacks his wife and lays her flat, do we respond by saying, ”Everybody gets angry?”

Next there is the leftist’s habit in argumentation of spitting out isolated snippets of fact, which in his mind, are signifiers of entire narratives that are, in his world, given, and need not, indeed should not be questioned. These isolated facts are almost always irrelevant or outdated.

The last abortion clinic bombing in the United States was in 1998.

More than ten years later, the last fatality I could find was the murder of Dr. George Tiller in 2009. His killer is serving life with no parole for at least 50 years. Worldwide, total fatalities in anti-abortion violence, to date fall far short of the average market bombing in Baghdad.

Anti abortion violence is also an example of the Left’s love of weak, or more often, entirely faulty syllogism. These embedded causal chains are the mortar that holds the Left world view together.

This one is about as strong as it gets, which is not much.

There is no doubt that anti-abortion violence has a religious dimension. While there are secularists and even atheists uneasy with abortion (I recommend reading Christopher Hitchens on this), opposition   comes largely from believers, with the Catholic Church in the van.

The religious horror at abortion comes from scriptural injunction against the taking of life. This also precludes the killing of an abortionist. Thus, we have a religiously inspired motivation for this violence, without any basis in religion.

Islam, starting with its (in)famous Verse of the Sword, has no such scruples in employing homicide in its advancement.

Unless you’ve been in such talks, a Lefty shouting “Timothy McVeigh!” in defense of Islam, might seem like a bit of Tourette’s, but is in fact an example of deductive absurdity that underlies much of their thinking.

mcveigh

Murderer Timothy McVeigh: Bright, misguided, and a decent prose stylist, but not at all concerned with religion.

 Here’s how it works: McVeigh blew up that federal building, because he didn’t like big government. People who don’t like big government, such as the Tea Party, believe in God. So, Timothy McVeigh bombed for God, just as Muslims do for Allah, when they are not bombing because of poverty or imperialism, that is.

That baptized, but non practicing as an adult, Roman Catholic McVeigh was a self professed agnostic to the day before his death, who only a few hours before the needle, decided to make Pascal’s wager and took the last rites, is something that evades the Left.

Then there is the IRA. It works the same way here. The IRA bombed and killed on behalf of Northern Ireland’s Catholic majority, so clearly they must have been motivated by religion. The Provos, the most extreme of the bunch, were basically Trotskyites with brogues, but somehow that doesn’t signify. Much as in the conflict between Serbs and Croats, religion in Northern Ireland defines ethnicity between groups who are otherwise identical in appearance and language, and the IRA had no interest in imposing Catholicism on anyone, least of all themselves, as they would have to rise early on Sundays after a night at the pub.

There’s a lot of bad stuff in the bible, too.

This comes up when you quote the Koran and relate it present day Islamic violence.

Indeed, Ecclesiastes is a byword for cruel punishment, particularly for moral transgressions. However, you won’t find its strictures in the civil code of Israel.

The genocides conducted by the Hebrews as they occupied Canaan are a favorite of the moral equivalence crowd. These slaughters are pretty gruesome, and too numerous to go into here. However, one reading other chronicles of Middle East peoples such the Hittites and Assyrians will be struck by the similarities. Islam has been largely consistent in offering the option of conversion over death, whereas the Israelites seemed to have had little interest in increasing the number of Jews. Ancient Israel had an expansionist phase, but located between other massive powers as it was, never got very far. Nor is there a consistent imperative to spread Yahweh’s religion to the ends of the earth.

victory-of-joshua-over-the-amorites-5046

Joshua fighting the Amorites, Nicholas Poussin. 17th Century. Why people tend to lose their clothes in these kinds of paintings isn’t clear,but hey, it’s French.

So, overall, pretty much a wash.

As to the leading characters of the Old Testament, even the best are flawed. We are told to admire David’s bravery and love of the Lord, but not encouraged to steal other men’s wives as he did Bathsheba.

In Islam, though, Mohammed, “al-Ihsan(the Perfect One) is held up as a model for all Muslims in every aspect of his character and deeds. Conquests, enslavement of non Muslims, and their killing, rape and plunder, may thus still be admirable ends to Muslims, as they were for Islam’s founder.

Those looking for equivalence in the Bible to Islam, focus on the Old Testament, the Hebrew
Torah, because the new Christian dispensation is of no use to them at all. Jesus had some hard words for sinners, but killed none, nor asked that others do so.

Israel is the problem.

This one introduces positions that range from the end of Israel to a “fair” deal for the Palestinians. Again, refer to the history of jihad. And not to go all wonky, but Hassan al-Banna, founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, which is the font of the modern Jihad, acted in response to the Kemalist abolition of the Ottoman Caliphate in 1924, when the ink on the Balfour Declaration was barely dry.

If we didn’t bomb and invade Muslim countries they wouldn’t dislike us so much.

blackhawk

Black Hawk Down, Mogadishu, Somalia, 1993.

I certainly agree that this is waste of lives and money, but it is curious to note that, since the Viet Nam War, aside from Grenada and Panama, every American military intervention abroad has involved Muslims, and aside from the Balkans, where Orthodox Serbia was the enemy, the U.S. has been defending one bunch of Muslims from another.

 

Radical Muslims are a tiny minority

Here we are getting into area where the Borg speaker rather than deflecting from Islam, purports to know something about it. As usual, his facts are irrelevant or distorted.

So, how tiny is tiny? Surveys of opinion, in both of Muslim countries and in Muslim populations in the West, consistently show very large numbers supporting sharia law, jihad, suicide bombers, Hamas and Hezbollah, and the destruction of Israel. These figures rise and fall and vary from place to place, but in the aggregate amount to hundreds of millions of Muslims. Pew Research reports regularly on these issues.

There is also, again, the matter of thirteen centuries of jihad in Europe, Africa and Asia.

Islam is a religion of Peace. “Islam” itself means peace.

While the word is derived in Arabic from the same root of that for the word for peace, Islam means submission. In the Islamic view a peaceful world will arise when the entire globe submits to Islam. Islamic geopolitics sees the world divided in twain: Dar ul Islam, the house of Peace, has already submitted. Dar ul Harb, the house of War –that’s us – has not.

It is also important to note that while Islam is seen as, and sees itself as a universal religion, the Koran says that it was revealed in Arabic, to the Arabs as they ”… are the best of peoples, evolved for mankind, enjoining what is right, forbidding what is wrong, and believing in Allah.”

Radical Muslims misunderstand their religion.

This is something the Borg talker will repeat when they hear explanations of Islamic violence from Muslims.  So what is it exactly that they misunderstand? Ask for citations from Islamic scripture, and classical Muslim commentators.

Note also that there are many Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists who engage in worship, but are weak in, or even largely ignorant of their respective theologies, but there doesn’t seem to be a problem with them and religiously inspired violence.

Conclusion

There is probably more, but I’ll stop here. Writing this has been almost as wearying as arguing with leftists. I don’t at all care for Islam, but there is an injunction against “arguing with fools” in Islamic law. I kind of get that, but persist.

Looking back at these pages, I see that a few leftie discourse markers have inspired me to write more than a couple of thousand words in rebuttal. Behind these words are entire libraries and disciplines, which I have barely plumbed.

I persist because I’m interested. Practically speaking, these points likely won’t change any Leftists’ minds, but they might just shut them up. That’s why I haven’t included much in the way of links.  I’ve done my research. Let the lefties support their own assertions, with their own research.

They won’t, of course. But, hey, whatever.

Then, if your friends are like mine, you can put it aside, have a few drinks, and enjoy the fruits of the civilization bequeathed to us by fighters such as Charles Martel, one in which I and my friends can hoist a craft beer, and agree to disagree.

Without beheading anyone.

Randy Newman Has No Reason To Live

After all, he’s an old (born 1943) white guy. And these days nobody much gives a shit about white guys, especially if they are old, and don’t work in the Left Coast entertainment industry or are paid up members of the Right Coast chattering classes.. So, in the typical  submissive pose adopted by liberals towards the blinding authenticity of minorities, Mr. Newman has written a song mocking white people.

The song, “I’m Dreaming of a White President” was hailed by NBC Entertaiment :

” Randy Newman has released a swooning, lyrically wicked new cut, “I’m Dreaming,” that finds the songwriter stepping into the shoes of a narrator who’s “dreaming of a white President/ Someone whom we can understand/ Someone who knows where we’re coming from.”

Mr Newman says:

“For me it’s a reaction to the Republican Party, which seems to have drifted farther to the right than a major party has drifted in my lifetime in any direction,” added Newman. “It seems to have become almost a radical party. The hate and . . . I don’t think it’ll last. That kind of thing doesn’t seem to last.”

The Hollywood Reporter and the New Yorker are on board as well, with the latter praising “the heavily ironized refrain:”  “Heavily” is the operative word; leaden, in fact. Liberal wit seems to be based on cliched articles of faith with which they hope to beat their audience into submission.

In the Reporter, Newman says;

“I think there are a lot of people who find it jarring to have a black man in the White House and they want him out,” Newman said in a press release. “They just can’t believe that there’s not a more qualified white man. You won’t get anyone, and I do mean anyone, to admit it.”

What Mr. Newman, and the sorts  who read the Reporter and New Yorker, cannot comprehend is that there are legions who believe there are many more qualified to hold the President’s job, of both genders and any range of colors,

The song writer is  putting over the baseless( and by this time, utterly tedious) but unquestioned trope that anyone opposed to President Obama is a racist, because the President is black. Mocking people for the color of their skin is not of course, hate, when that skin is white.

Newman has written a theme song for what has been an ecstatic festival of white liberals flagellating others for being white and disagreeing with them. He needn’t have made the effort. Simply take his classic “Short People,” which says the little guys have no reason to live, and substitute “white people.”

Geoffrey Dunn  of the Huffington Post described the Tampa GOP Convention as “Snooze Fest–better known as the Gathering of Pasty White People-”  and looked forward in dizzy ancticipation to the opportunity to mock Old White Guy Clint Eastwood, who was once mayor of “the upscale and frighteningly white community of Carmel” (Mr. Dunn lives in Santa Cruz, California, not exactly overrun with brothers, either)

Mr. Eastwood did not disappoint, his Empty Chair routine throwing out red – er, white – meat for Caucasian  paleface haters. Sen Tom Harkin(D) of Iowa said “I got to thinking he is the perfect icon for today’s Republican tea party: an old angry white man spewing incoherent nonsense.”

MSNBC’s Chris Matthews is a dependable source of incoherent nonsense. He describes the GOP message as “a relentless dog whistle” that “treats black voters with disdain and treats white people like well, well-trained canines.” Those opposed to this racist assault should be “be on the alert for the tribal messages, the war drums of racial division” says Mr. Matthews.

Now that reminds me of those old movies where the planter says “The natives are restless tonight,”  a little bit racist, dontcha think?  In any case, Matthews is allowed to say such things without accusations of dog whistling because he’s a white guy who doesn’t like white guys

Joan Walsh of Salon has a nifty little cash cow gonig with her hate on white guys.  During the primaries she described Republican Newt Gingrich as the “Face Of ‘Resentment, Racism And Angry White Male Rage’ and can be found all over the net talking about aggrieved whites and hawking her new book “What’s the Matter with White People: Why We Long for a Golden Age That Never Was” ( I’m not giving this bitch a link to Amazon!)

You get the picture.  Examples of this phnomenon are endless.  I’m not about to go into a Stormfront( no link for them, either) style rant on race traitors.  It’s far simpler than that: These people want to hang ot with the cool kids, and they are not old and white. President Obama is the sine qua non of cool kids these days.

Whites are white; they cannot be non white, but they can apologize for their whiteness and thus hope to earn their way into the charmed inner circle. It’s amusing, at first glance, but deeply disquieting given some thought. Barack Obama was to be the post racial president, and has instead brought race back to the forefront, as a place marker and bargaining chip. Early in the campaign season, I wrote with of tentative optimism about race relations in America, specifically between blacks and whites.  My sanguinity was unfounded. Mr Obama has given us no hope that race can ever be overcome, and has opted against change, instead cleaving to divisive interest group politics, well beyond the simple black-white divide, a 21st century high tech social networked Tammany Hall, with a society fractured along uncounted fault lines of self interest defined by grievance. .

Race politics are here to stay.  There are too many people, with too much invested, for them to vanish.

In fact, racial analysis of society is a growth industry in academia, with courses and departments devoted to exposing “white privilege,” even as America becomes more and more mutiracial. This invidious subversion creates an endless feedback loop as participants embrace their roles of victim and penitent former oppressor.

And it spreads far beyond campuses and think tanks, informing the world views of ordinary people. Recently, I had a Twitter encounter with a young Latina.  She wrote that “White” equalled wealth and privelege.  A few more tweets and she conceded that white did not necessarily equal wealth, but that privilege was given. She had to admit that all white people were not rich,  as her partner was one, as was the father of her child.

This nastiness, wherein  race hustlers push their ideologies, can then divide families.

I know, because this is true for me. One daughter studies public administration and writes her thesis on racial profiling.  She looks mixed – if you now that she is. Yet she has thrown her lot with those who would divide us, and is canny enough to see potential gain in her position.

The other daughter, while pale, does not at all look Caucasian.  She told me not long ago that in a mandatory “diversity training” session, the trainer singled her out, and said “This looks like someone who may have been treated differently bcause she looks different.”

My daughter replied, “Not until now,” and flipped her off when she turned back to the white board.

She is angry about all this and so am I.  First there was sadness, but in the end anger is just. I never enslaved, nor discriminated, nor disparaged anyone because of race.  And this is what I get for my good will. This poison is spread for political and career gain, and those who do so do not think of the social and psychic wreckage they create.

I’m old.

I’m angry.

I’m white.

To paraphrase the great Ring Lardner,

“Fuck you,” he explained.

“Dreams From My Father”: Obama’s Fables

I read “Dreams from My Father” about a year ago.  It was pretty much what I expected, and I gave it little further thought.  But now that cynophagy and composite girlfriends have produced virtual reams of electronic copy across the internet, I realize I missed something.  I coudda been a contender.  Few of the millions who bought the book read it closely, if at all.

The juicy cuts have been ingested but, perhaps like a hungry man three days after Thanksgiving I can still pick something of interest from the carcass.

I quote from the 2004 edition, published just as State Senator Obama was in his first – and only – term.–

It doesn’t take long to see that Obama is a fabulist, and not a skillful one.  Anecdotes conveniently support his narrative of alienation and oppression with a clumsy didacticism that one would expect in a Stalin Prize winner.

 

From the Introduction:

 

“My wife’s cousin, only six years old, has already lost his innocence.  A few weeks ago he reported to his parents that some of his first grade classmates had refused to play with him because of his dark, unblemished skin”

This seemed unlikely. It’s just too pat.  The boy’s parents had moved to an affluent suburb so that he might flourish in a better school system and live in safety rather than perish in the gang culture of inner city neighborhood from which his parents came.  In this century with America’s institutionalized concern with race, fairness, and multiculturalism, I’m sure someone would watch out for a boy in such a situation, and I have faith in the general decency of my countrymen, even first graders.

Mr. Obama may have congratulated himself on his nice sense of irony as he wrote this, but I don’t buy it.  Notice that the racial slight is at one remove:  it’s something he heard, so, if it didn’t happen, or was exaggerated, it’s not his fault.

One might think that my reaction is rooted in my antipathy to the President, a feeling I freely acknowledge, but consider an anecdote in the first chapter.  The young Obama, living in a low rent apartment in Manhattan, hangs out on the fire escape where he observes whites from a nearby affluent neighborhood walking their dogs and letting them crap everywhere in an arrogant and demeaning challenge to the poor folk who live there.

Not only is the metaphor overdrawn and cartoonish; it’s simply not believable.  Any New Yorker could tell you this would be a very risky practice.  It’s crap all right.  It didn’t happen.

What did happen is that a publisher first paid well for Mr. Obama’s amateurish mythologizing, and years later, a nation is paying dearly for its belief in him and his empty fables.

The Toulouse Murders: Anti-Zionism is Racism

This week in Toulouse, France Mohammad Merah killed a rabbi and three children, dragging the youngest by her hair before he blew her brains out.   Merah stated that he was avenging Israeli murders of Palestinian children.

On November 10, 1975,  the United Nations passed General Assembly Resolution 3379. Which condemned Zionism as a form of racism.

Thirty years after the ovens went cold, the Jews were again labeled a people apart.   We have since reached the point where anti-Semitism, disguised as empathy for “opressed Palestinians” is not only acceptable, but fashionable.

Immediately following the killings in France, we heard from the Baroness Ashton, E.U. foreign policy chief, deploring the murders but somehow equating the with dead children in Gaza.  She has since somewhat nuanced her words, but not so far as to acknowledge that the innocent dead in Gaza have been and always are, killed as a result of conflict initiated by Palestinians.

And  when Islamists kill it’s not their fault.

Tarik Ramadan, Oxford Don, and doyen of the Islamic apologetic circuit, said this:

(Merah was)”…A French citizen frustrated at being unable to find his place, to give his life dignity and meaning in his own country, he would find two political causes through which he could articulate his distress: Afghanistan and Palestine. He attacked symbols like the army, and killed Jews, Christians and Muslims without distinction.

Mera hmade his motives quite clear, targeting Jews in the name of Palestine, and French soldiers as revenge for France’s role in Afghanistan.  What do Palestine and Afghanistan have in common?  Of course, it is Islam

Ramadan’s air brushing is typical of his ilk; that such people are lionized n western intellectual circles demonstrates that we are, in our own way, as sick as the Islamic world,
where Jew hatred has a provenance almost as ancient as that of Europe.

Sahih Bukhari Hadith Volume 4, Book 52, Number 177: Narrated by Abu Huraira: Allah’s Apostle said, “The Hour will not be established until you fight with the Jews, and the stone behind which a Jew will be hiding will say. “O Muslim! There is a Jew hiding behind me, so kill him.”

It is time to dispense with the term “anti-Semitism.”  Let’s call it what it is, Jew  hatred. and those who practice it what they are – Jew haters.

You who toss a keffiyeh around your neck and sip coffee as you discuss “Israeli apartheid,“ you are Jew haters.  Your black and whitechecked fashion accessory is your brown shirt.  Call yourself progressive, antifash, or whatver you like, but only the empty  abstraction and post modern obfuscation of your mimicked discourses distinguish you from Stormfront.

When you sign  “Boycott and Divestment“ petition you are a Jew hater.

Your hatred, you think, is chic concern for the down trodden  You are an engage.  In fact, you are appallingly stupid.  Your hatred is born in ignorance and intellectual superstition,  What you regard as facts are instead mythical incantations, intended to conjure up a past that never was, and to transform the present into a future that will never be.

You repeat the baseless and self important assertions of whichever half lettered disciple of Edward Said filled your vacuous, but selfish minds in some overpriced classroom.  Israel you say, is a colonial construct, a Western imposition on the Arab World.  Yet you cannot make the parallel conclusion that the map lines which define every Arab country today were drawn in Western foreign ministries.  All of these ramshackle polities calling themselves Arab states, miserable failures at providing anything but want and strife for their populations, hate Jews.  And so do you.

“Palestinians deserve to be free,” you say. Yet Israel is the only country in the middle East where all can worship freely, or not at all, and whose citizens can choose to live as religous, atheists, gays, secualar democrats, indeed any identity the wish to choose  or fashion on their own.   The extant Palestinian territories are morasses of petty despotism, extortion and nepotism.  This you would extend to a tiny, but highly successful, country in the name of a freedom that the Palestinians have long since shown they have no wish for, and you wish this on Israel because you are a Jew hater.

You would laugh at a Greek irredentist demanding a march on Constantinople.  While vast areas of Central and Eastern Europe  were once German and now are not, you do not demand right of return for Silesians, Pomeranians and Prussians.

But you do so for Palestinian Arabs.

Because you hate Jews.

If you truly cared for the Palestinians you would not urge them to continue on their fruitless absolutist quest.  For when Palestine is free, from the River to the Sea, it will be the freedom of utter devastation.

It would be a lesser rhetorical excess than those you use against to Jews to say that the blood of Janathan Sandler, his sons Aryeh and Gabirel, and the little girl Miriam are on you  hands, but it is fair to say that your are close enough to catch the spatter.

Tarik Ramadan is a liar. And so are you when you say You aren’t anti Jew, just anti-Zionist, so you support the One State “solution.”  Jews understand when they hear talk of “solutions.

Muammed Merah was honest.  You should be too.

Say it.

I don’t love Palestine.

I hate Jews.

All Rise: Immigration: It’s Not about Race.

"Minnesota Women" (Amina Farah Ali and Hawo Mohamed Hassan)

“A Minnesota woman on trial for allegedly funneling money to a terrorist group in Somalia was found in contempt of court Monday when she refused to stand for the judge and jury, citing religious grounds.” (October3, 2011)

Reuters, the AP and  the Minneapolis Star Tribune refer to these “Somali Americans” as “Minnesota women.”  Rather than the stereotyped interests one might associate with a Minnesota woman – baking, out door sports, PTA and so on, these ladies have an interest in jihad back in Somalia,  You know, just like the “Massachusetts man” whose interest in  miniature aircraft got him a jam the other day.

The Daily Beastis a bit more to the point with “Feds Accuse 14 Americans of Aiding Somalian Jihadists” (Aug 5, 2010 2:30 PM EDT), but also refers to the defendants as “Minnesota women.”

Some Minnesota Women

One wonders at the use of “Americans.”  Are we then to think that these jihad ladies (and one is engaged in jihad simply by supporting the armed conflict.  All major schools of Islamic jurisprudence agree on this point) are people just like you and me, or our neighbors.  Or is it shock that “Americans” would do something like this, as if the bestowal of nationality necessarily changes attitudes, or that citizenship acquired by naturalization or birth right will automatically trump centuries old tribalism?

American these ladies may be in nationality, but in attitude they are something else, as Aminah demonstrated when she refused to stand for the judge.  No doubt she recognizes no law but shariah, under which of course she would not be accused of any offense,

It can be tedious pointing out this endless linguistic obfuscation on the part of  the legacy  media.  Minnesotans have a certain stereotyped appearance: Generally white, although we do think of Prince, Scandinavian  and German origin, interested in fishing and hunting, hardy snowmobilers.  It may seem brutal, but I will say it outright: the accused don’t look like Minnesotans.     The reason they don’t is not because of their color but  their demeanor.

“Here come da Judge.”  There are civic institutions for which we demonstrate respect, even if we may not feel it in our hearts.  This is the deal.  This makes us Americans.

Apparently, this was unsatisfactory in some quarters, and Minnesota,  a state the NYT described as “lily white,”  was chosen as a primary destination for  Somali immigrants.  On a smaller scale, quite similar to the “Blair Immigration Project,” in which the Labor Party elite opened Britain to mass immigration, largely from Muslim countries, especially Pakistan and Bangladesh.

A former speech writer for Blair describes the idea:

“The huge increases in migrants over the last decade were partly due to a politically motivated attempt by ministers to radically change the country and “rub the Right’s nose in diversity”, according to Andrew Neather, a former adviser to Tony Blair, Jack Straw and David Blunkett.

He defended the policy, saying mass immigration has “enriched” Britain, and made London a more attractive and cosmopolitan place. ”

A fairly common scene in Londonistan

Well, it certainly has, without doubt, increased the availability of kebab and curry takeout. Other changes have not been so desirable.

Diversity  The sophisticated left and right coast mentality has always been drawn to cosmopolitanism.  New York and San Francisco – and begrudgingly, Chicago, and also New Orleans, which while cracker, was also French – were the preferred roosts of the bohemian: These cities had French and Italian restaurants, Chinese, and were as close as we could come to Europe.  Snobbish as this outlook was, it was at least looking in the right direction.  We have been immeasurably enriched by immigration.  It’s not just the exponential growth in dining choices, but the validation of our inclusive way of life,  and how we see ourselves.

Thus it is easy to fall into the trap of looking at all immigration through a sentimental lens,  The immigration now is not always what we knew, a Greek or a Chinese who started a small business, and whose kids went to college, maybe joined the military, and happily moved to the suburbs, where they lived in houses with space and amenities people in the home country only saw on the silver screen.  Filipinos, Latinos, Chinese, Arabs, washing  their trucks on weekends, barbecuing in the park.

There has always been that tension, particularly with immigrants from more traditional societies, between the immigrant generation, and their progeny who move away form “old country ways.”  It’s a familiar story.  The children were drawn to the main culture because it provided opportunity, and because the message was overwhelming,.  Those few blocks of the old country became to seem a prison when the hyphenated Americans looked out to that vast continental possibility.

Our culture is a blend, first settlers from the British Isles, all white yes, but not in themselves homogeneous, the churchmen of New England and entrepreneurs very different from the land grantees of the south, or the hardscrabble Scotch Irish of the Piedmont, and a generous leaven of felons from throughout the home islands,  Huguenots here and there, the absorbed Dutch.

“White” is not, and never has been an ethnicity.

Few  remember that the WASPS were not at all happy with e arrival of the
Germans.  They only went to Church Sunday morning, and instead of going back for evening services, spent the rest of the Sabbath having picnics, playing sports – women too!  Scandalous and depraved.  They drank and danced.  The Irish had their troubles in America, but came in droves from a far worse alternative. The million or more Scandinavians encountered no difficulties other than being called dumb Swedes or square heads.

Later groups from southeast and south Europe did encounter resistance and even racialist contempt, but they too were  assimilated.  Assimilation doesn’t mean vanishing entirely. The Boston Irish, and the New York Italians are vital and distinct to this day, but consider themselves nothing but American, as do Americans regard them.

So why get upset about arrivals from Somalia and other Muslim nations?

After all, with mass Latino immigration,there is  the possibility of immigrant concentrations  so large they cannot be absorbed, because in their sheer numbers, they can be self referential.  Little Italies and Greektowns were a matter of a few city blocks;but we may soon be dealing with enclaves the sze of small states. And while hardly mainstream, Chicano irrredentism, with its call for the return or seizure by resettlement, of the Mexican Cession, exists.

Mexico North

A problem, yes; and a massive one, but one that is still manageable.  With high out-marriage rates, it is clear that Hispanic immigrants in the main assimilate. And in Latin America we see a branch of European civilization, with its civic institutions derived, via Spain, from ancient Rome.

In Somali immigration, and that of other groups coming from Islamic countries, the case is entirely different. Although  Hindus, Chinese, Japanese, Koreans, and Vietnamese are from non-Western traditions, their cultures contain nothing like this injunction from the Koran:

Surah 3:28

Let not the believers take for friends or helpers unbelievers rather than believers: if any do that, in nothing will there be help from Allah: except by way of precaution, that ye may guard yourselves from them. But Allah cautions you (to remember) Himself; for the final goal is to Allah.

Assimilation, which requires full participation in the host community, is scripturally prohibited in Islam.

In “Minnesotastan” we have the seeds of the “Islamic emirates” being established in Britain. Amina Farah Ali and Hawo Mohamed Hassan will never be “Minnesota Women,” and if the trends in Europe are an indicator, neither will their children.

Tower Hamlets, London

Campaign 2012: The Souls Of Black Folk

(Living abroad, I have little cause  to think much about American race relations but the coverage of Morgan Freeman’s remarks on CNN September 25 caught my attention.  Like millions of Americans,I’ve long been a Freeman fan.)

Morgan Freeman as God: Not as wise as the Almighty, after all.

Given past statements on race, Morgan Freeman taking on the Tea Party is not as predictable as might appear, and is thus deeply disappointing to many.  Freeman has played America’s wise grandfather for so long, that many thought that he was that for all of us.  His semi-coherent diatribe on Piers Morgan Tonight is just one more, and quite prominent, indicator that post racialism is as far away as ever,

Early in, there is an echo of the Freeman, who in an interview with Mike Wallace in 2009 said the best way to solve the race problem was to stop talking about it, when asked  whether he wanted to be perceived as a black actor:

MORGAN: You don’t think the word “black” should now really be used in any context to–

FREEMAN: Not really, you know, it — what use is it? What good does it do? You know, what we’ve almost always done, when you label someone, you know, say for example, while he’s the best Chinese this or he’s the best Latin that or the best black that, nobody ever says the best white anything.

But that doesn’t last.

In his later remarks, Freeman exhibits the same vague unease, but lack of facts, that accompany much Tea Party Criticism.   He doesn’t care for Senate Minority leader Mitch McConnell, but seems unsure of just exactly who the senator is.

MORGAN FREEMAN: Made it(the election of President Obama) worse. Made it worse. Look at, look, the Tea Partiers, who are controlling the Republican Party, stated, and what’s this guy’s name, Mitch O’Connell. Is that his, O’Connell?

.He ascribes this sentiment, but not a statement, to the Minority leader and the Tea Party
“…we are going to do whatever we can do to get this black man out of here.”

The interviewer points out that a white Democrat President also had problems with Republicans, to which Freeman can only say “…Clinton, they tried, but still…”

What can one say?  Mr. Freeman, it’s politics and this goes on in all election cycles, regardless of party?

Then we get to the money quote:

“Yes. Well, it just shows the weak, dark  underside of America… “
“…And then it just sort of started turning because these people surfaced like stirring up muddy water.” 

Racist Scum

Vicious racist pond scum just waiting to spread.

Sad.  I hope, and really don’t doubt, that most Americans are still well disposed to Black people.  When people have asked me what I miss about America, I found myself responding, the sound of Spanish, and Black people.  Like many white Americans, I can’t say I really know any black people.  In the course of my life I’ve only been fairly friendly with a couple, but am in touch with neither anymore.

So many decades after the March on Washington, it is deeply troubling to see these

1963: The March on Washington. The most inspiring event of my lifetime.

controversies go on and on.  I’m sure many ,if not most of my generation, had you asked us in the late sixties, would have confidently predicted a post racial America by now.

I have my issues with Black folks, the high crime rate, bloc voting, elevation of charlatans like Sharpton and Jackson to prominence,  although in the last instance, one wonders if the white dominated media are the real culprits. Rowdy kids acting out on buses.  And yes, a certain hollow feeling when I have strolled unthinkingly and suddenly found myself in a neighborhood that was entirely black.

And then to return to one of those neighborhoods for services at great small businesses. A friendly bar where I could have a beer and a bit of chit chat between work and night classes.  A fantastic takeout where the Korean War vet owner presided over amazing smells, and great food that the Asian kids he hired served up with big smiles, as if it were not a a job but just a great big goof.  Hot links, and brisket sandwiches, slaw an potato salad.  Sweet potato pie if you possibly had any room left.

Compton

I get to the States only occasionally and a few years back, staying with a friend and lifetime resident of largely white West side LA, I remarked that the black people we encountered,  working at restaurants, cashiers, salespeople and so on, seemed not only quick at their work, but genuinely outgoing and friendly. Many were young, and casual chats revealed that they were working part time and going to  the colleges and universities that abound in West LA. My cynical friend thought that this relaxed interchange between races was due in part to a feeling of solidarity with whites, versus the Latino migration.  He had to agree, however, that things seemed to have improved,  “It’s not all Compton, anymore,” he said,

A long time back, a different friend was railing against  blacks, and my response was, “If they all disappeared one day, you would miss them.“

The first cargo of Africans arrived in Jamestown quite by happenstance, but the trade grew quickly.

Who, after all, is more American than black people?  Schoolchildren still learn, as I did, that the first cargo of African arrived In Jamestown in 1619.  What wasn’t taught back then was that there were some who were free men from the start.
This certainly beats  snooty Mayflower descendants.  As the legal importation of Africans for slavery ended in 1803, it’s a safe bet that the ancestry of the average Black American will predate that of many whites.

I make a choice in this post to use the term “Black.”  People of my age

The memory of merely seeing the segregated South is indelible; It is not possible to imagine what living there as blacks was truly like.

clearly remember signs saying “No colored,” “No Negros,“  and while these were polite terms at the time, it was easy to understand why Blacks would shed them.

How many remember Jesse Jackson decreeing in a Chicago speech sometime in the 80s that henceforth, Blacks would be called African-Americans?  And the Orwellian speed with which the media and academia adopted it?

At the time, and now, it seemed to me that hyphenating this group whose migration, involuntary as it was, predated that of most of the ancestors of their fellow citizens, was insulting, and more importantly, inaccurate.  Black Americans are foremost among the very first Americans and their unique history and culture, and their contributions to the nation they inhabit were made here, not in Africa.

Of course, as a white person, I have no “right,” to take a stand on this, but everyday usage indicates that Black is still preferred.  After all, W.E. Dubois wrote about “Souls of Black Folks,” not African-Americans.  Yet, the term African-American does indicate the distance that many blacks still feel from their country, an estrangement that in some quarters seems to be entrenched, and growing,

The clearest signs are bloc voting, with 95% of Black voters going for President Obama in 2008 and the frenzied, and paranoid stockade mentality many prominent blacks are taking in defending his, at best debatable record as Chief Executive. Take Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick on  conservatives and the Tea Party, when commenting on the Freeman CNN Interview:

“I can tell you that it’s clear from the evidence that the ‘Heck with the interest of the common good and whatever we need to do to derail this presidency’ has characterized some if not all of Tea Party behavior in the Congress of the United States, no doubt about it,” Patrick said.

O.J. The Verdict

46% of the electorate did not think electing Obama as President would foster the common good, and after the fact,  more have come to the same conclusion. If many more blacks approve of the president’s performance than do whites, is this because they are right, and whites racist?  This divide trumps any facts because it is consistently so lopsided.  I remember too well the sinking feeling at the conclusion of the Simpson trial, when my black colleagues gave out a shout and fist pumps when the acquittal came in.

If the Tea Party, and conservatives in general, are predominately white, is Governor Debal a racist for criticizing them?

“The governor also described conservative behavior as ‘seditious,’ saying that patriots come together in crisis to work on a solution.”

“Sedition: Conduct or speech inciting people to rebel against the authority of a state or monarch. ”

Or even worse: “Conduct or language inciting rebellion against the authority of a state.
2. Insurrection; rebellion

Yes insurrection , such as the rebellion of the South, the suppression of which resulted in Emancipation.

“The notion that the singular focus of the hard right today is to defeat this president,  even if there’s an idea he puts forward to help-that they used to support-is incredibly worrisome to me and a very different political climate, I think, that we’ve been dealing with for a long time,” he said.

The governor does not specify which of the administration’s ideas might be ones
Republicans once approved, but now oppose.  Once again, there is nothing particularly remarkable here. It’s called an election, much as Governor Bev Perdue of North Carolina might like to dispense with them.

“Patrick was not the only one to respond to Morgan’s comments. GOP presidential contender Herman Cain had told Fox News that Morgan’s remarks were “short-sighted.”

“Most of the people that are criticizing the Tea Partiers about having a racist element, they have never been to a Tea Party,” Cain said.

“Short sighted,” indeed.  This hysteria among the black electorate, that the Tea Party wants to bring back slavery and lynching as Rep. Andre Carson of Indiana and others have said , is more than silly: it is a sad and depressing indication that much of Black America has no memory of its proud history before its open-ended indenture on the Great Society plantation.

“Black History is American history,” Freeman said in a better and very lucid moment in the Wallace Interview.  It is indeed, and a proud part of it. I said the same thing in introducing my self to the Black Literature Club, of which I was the sole white member, where I worked in the 90s. ( This was no statement as to my enlightened racial outlook. I like to read, and the stuff these people were doing fit  well with some night classes I was taking.) We had lunchtime meetings, read Zora Neale Houston, slave narratives, MLK, and Toni Morrison, who sadly racist that she is, is a wonderful story teller and stylist.

Sojourner Truth

A high point was MLK day, when members brought their scrubbed and dressed up kids, to deliver memorized speeches and sermons of Dr King, Fredrick Doublass, Harriet Tubman, Sojourner Truth and others, The art of memorization and declamation was alive there, long after being lost in the public schools

Downsizing and brutal hours put an end to the club’s activities, but that was the not the only glimpse I have had into black America where I think something good, decent remains, an older culture in opposition to the underclass rage, one that if revitalized would not only help black America, but the nation as a whole.

One reads of inner city hell hole schools.  I did sub in one predominantly Black and Latino High School on the western edge of Phoenix.  The first day I had that same trepidation as in entering an unknown black area.   Immediately I was flagged down by some big black adults, sitting on a courtyard bench.  They were security, ex military mostly, some studying for the police academy exam.

They knew everything that went on.  A kid even thinking of acting up got his name called out, and a meek “yes sir” and apology usually followed quickly. They were funny guys and made me welcome at break times.   This assignment came after a few weeks at a school in an affluent area, where kids drove their own new SUVs to school.  There were a lot of spit wads and backtalk,

It struck me immediately that these kids said “Sir,” and “Mr.”.  There was an old fashioned level of courtesy towards adults.  Sure ,they acted out, and sometimes it was hard to discipline them because they were so hilarious. Two in particular I remember, Jimmy a gawky kid, Mississippi dark, with a constant smile who simply could not keep still.  More than once I had to send him out, but he just went with the same smile. And came back the next day and did it all over again.

Then there was Sheniqua. (Yes, that was the name)  a tall Nilotic exotic just a little too aware of her looks, who once flashed me her tummy, and very taut it was.  The shorts that barely met dress code requirements were bad enough.

Yet she submitted a highly readable and passionate assessment of her favorite singer, Usher, complete with musicology references and footnotes, making an argument for placing him in the tradition of black jazz and blues singers.

I had much less trouble with these kids than with their far more well off peers in the other side of the valley,  Indulging in amateur sociology, looking back at the small business men in San Francisco, the church going book readers in the literature club, the firm but caring security guys and the sassy but bright students at that Phoenix school, did I see an echo of an earlier black America, one that began in the rural South where blacks had no choice but to do for themselves, and which carried over into the urban neighborhoods that people like Bill Cosby fondly remember, before they were destroyed by welfare and redevelopment?

One must take political biographies skeptically, yet a look at people like Herman Cain seems to say that this Black  America is still out there. Whether it can prevail against those who would exploit it for political purposes, as they have for so long, is a question that will  effect not only the election outcome, but the lives of all Americans. Campaign 2012 will be about many things, but one will be the souls of Black folks.