This blog initially set out to focus primarily on Islam and the Islamisation of the UK. However, since that time the subjects covered have broadened. They now include (amongst other things): IQ tests, Jean Baudrillard, global warming, sociobiology, Marxism, Trotskyism, David Cameron, Foucault, Nazism, Ralph Miliband, economics, statistics and so on. - Paul Austin Murphy
I've had articles published in The Conservative Online, American Thinker, Intellectual Conservative, Human Events, Faith Freedom, Brenner Brief (Broadside News), New English Review, etc... (Paul Austin Murphy's Philosophy can be found here.)

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Jeremy Corbyn and Stop the War aren't Pacifists!



… or even “anti-war”.

American readers may not be aware that the British Opposition – the Labour Party – has appointed a communist (or, in his own words, a“democratic socialist”) as its leader.

Jeremy Corbyn MP was the chair of the Stop the War Coalition (StWC) from 2011 until September 2015. A week after his election as leader of the Labour Party (in September 2015) he announced that he was stepping down from the role. He also said that he'd continue to support Stop the War.

The StWC has been actively campaigning against military action in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria since it was created in 2001. Thus it was inevitable that both Jeremy Corbyn and StWC would be against any military action in Syria. Though, as we shall see, not because they are pacifists or even anti-war.

The British Prime Minister, David Cameron, has only just accused those who are against air-strikes against the Islamic State in Syria as being “terrorist sympathisers”. He's right. However, Leftists are terrorist sympathisers not because they oppose air-strikes; but because they are literally sympathetic towards terrorist groups (e.g., Hamas and Hezbollah) and terror-supporting states (e.g., Iran and Syria) and their various causes. Isolationists and others, on the other hand, will be against Syrian intervention for very different reasons.

**********************************************************************

First things first. Jeremy Corbyn is not – repeat not – a pacifist and it's a disgrace that certain tabloids and commentators have described him in that that way. He is self-described as a "anti-imperialist campaigner" who's working within the system he ultimately wants to destroy. This is a stance which dates back to Antonio Gramsci in the late 1920s and 1930s. After that, the Frankfurt School, Saul Alinskyand many others have updated Gramscian theories for their own countries and for their own times.

Thus Corbyn is not against war – he's only against wars fought be Western “capitalist states”. The Stop the War Coalition too is only against supposedly “capitalist wars”. Many other forms of violence - carried by Islamists, communists or those who aren't white (e.g. “national liberation movements”) - are supported by Stop the War. In other words, the Stop the War Coalition has zero to say (in terms of demonstrations, activism and rhetoric) about wars and violence carried out by non-capitalist states and Islamic terror groups.

The founders of StWC were all members (or former members) of the Socialist Workers Party (SWP). Indeed it was only the other day that I saw Corbyn share a platform with SWP member and Unite Against Fascism (UAF) leader: violentcriminal,Weyman Bennett.


Since we're on the subject of the StWC, it's also worth mentioning the strong connections between its leaders and activists and the Iranian theocratic state. Various StWC leaders have presented programmes for Iran's Press TV channel; along with other Islamist outlets. George Galloway, for example, is also an important leader of the Stop the War Coalition.
John Rees and CAGE


One other leader - and a founder - of the StWC (its 'national officer') is John Rees; who's also a founder and leader of the very recent Trotskyist frontgroup – The People's Assembly. Rees also effectively works for the Iranian state and does itspropaganda business via Press TV and the Islam Channel. (Here's a CST link on John Rees's work for the Islam Channel.) Indeed recently John Rees took part in the infamous press conference held by the Islamist group CAGE in which Britain's 'Jihadi John' was both defended and supported.

John Rees, then, will receiving thousands of pounds (minimum) a month from the Iranian state. Rees, as a leader of The People's Assembly, also once said that he'd support Iran in a war with Britain. And, as everyone should know, Iran supports both Bashar Assad and Hezbollah – all at the heart of Syria's current civil war.

Now what does Stop the War and John Rees think of the Iranian state killing gays, persecuting Christian minorities and oppressing women? Actually, they don't think that any of this is wrong. Why is that? It's partly because Iranians have brown skin and they're also – or the state is – against the West and semi-officially (at least) anti-capitalist. That's all it takes for Trotskyists/progressives like John Rees to reverse their previous deeply-held political standards. Change the oppressor's skin colour from white to brown (or to black) and the oppressor simply ceases to be an oppressor. That's how simple Trotskyist logic is.

Now set John Rees views on Iran and indeed Syria within the context of a Trotskyism - now called 'progressivism' – which states that black and brown people can never be racist; or even be held responsible for political violence. This is true, apparently, by (Marxist) definition. Why is that? Because brown and black people never have 'political power'. This means that they are always 'oppressed' and always victims. Thus, like a mathematical equation, they simply can't do either political or criminal wrong... just like children really! This is the stipulation/diktat behind the hypocrisy and (positive) racism of the Left.

Thus Stop the War and Jeremy Corbyn are against military intervention for two main reasons:


i) They are strong supporters of Iran. Iran is a strong supporter of Bashar Assad's regime in Syria. (Here is John Rees saying “Don't Attack Iran!''.)

ii) 'Western capitalist states' would be carrying out the military intervention in Syria. Therefore that's automatically wrong because, according to Marxist logic, it will be exclusively driven by the “inevitable laws of capitalist accumulation and imperialism”.


So, to recap. Jeremy Corbyn and the Stop the War Coalition aren't against military intervention in Syria because they're against war or violence. They're certainly not pacifists. Indeed they are Trotskyists and communists who have a strong commitment to what they themselves call “revolutionary violence”. This also partly explains their tacit defence - and sometimes support - of Islamic terror.

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*) Some examples of John Rees's work for Iran, via Press TV:

Friday, 4 December 2015

Oldham Votes for Islam



Oldham: 25% Muslim (2001)...

Blackburn: 11.45% Pakistani (2001)
Burnley: 6.6% Muslim (2001)
Calderdale: 6.8% Pakistani (2011)
Derby: 5.9% Pakistani (2011)
Hyndburn: 7% Pakistani (2011)
Kirklees: 10.1% Muslim (2001)
Pendle: 13.1% Pakistani (2001)
Peterborough: 9.4% Muslim (2011)
Slough: 17.7% Pakistani (2011)
Tower Hamlets: 32% Bangladeshi, 34% Muslim (2011)
Walsall: 25% Muslim (2001)
Woking: 6.7% Muslim (2004)


(Some surveys only supply ethnic - not religious - demographics: hence the fluctuation between “Pakistani”and “Muslim”.)

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Labour's Jim McMahon has secured a 10,722-vote majority for the Labour Party in Oldham. And that's despite the endless reports of Muslim victimhood, Muslim grooming-gangs and council corruption.

Labour Party appeasement of all things Islamic has certainly paid dividends in Oldham. Oldham has one of the highest levels of Muslim voters than any other town or city of the UK. It stands, as whole, at a 25% of the entire population.

Basically, the Labour Party has bought these votes and that's without looking into the problems of Muslim “block-voting” and rigged postal votes.

Welcome to Oldham – twinned with Islamabad.

Working Class Votes?

The BBC doesn't mention the fact that 25% of people in Oldham are Muslim; although it does talk about... yes, you guessed it, “Asians”!

The BBC even had the audacity to state that despite the claims that the modern Labour Party is only a party for the metropolitan elite, this election result proved that Oldham's working class is still behind the Labour Party.

No it didn't!

It shows that Oldham's Muslim population is firmly behind the party... and it is so in a block-voting-and-rigging-kind-of-a-way.

This is how the BBC's Brian Wheeler interpreted the result:


“Reports from the campaign trail in Oldham had suggested Labour was haemorrhaging votes among its traditional white working class supporters, horrified by what one commentator called the party's transformation into a 'poncified' party of middle class Metropolitan liberals.”

Then BBC's Mr Wheeler smugly rounds things off by saying that the“London-based away-day pundits have been proved wrong”.

Predictably, Corbyn and the Labour Party generally have painted this victory as an example of “driving the Tories back” and a revolt against their “austerity agenda and narrative”. I'm willing to say that austerity (whatever that is) is part of the story, but the main explanation is the large Muslim population of Oldham.

Muslim Corruption

As for Nigel Farage on this issue.

He claims that the postal vote was rigged. He said that there are "stories of things that shouldn't have been happening". That included Muslims turning up at polling stations with multiple postal votes. Farage went on to say that UKIP “will file a formal complaint about the abuses that our people saw yesterday".

To top all that, Farage claims that in some boxes 99% of the votes were for the Labour Party.

Farage rounded off his synopsis by stating the following:



"It means effectively - in some of these seats where people don't speak English, but they're signed up to postal votes - effectively the electoral process is now dead."

All that rings very true. Why is that? Because council and voting corruption is endemic in all areas with large Muslim minorities. That includes Bradford, Keighley, Tower Hamlets... and places like Oldham. I've personally seen extensive documentation of Muslim corruption in newspapers such as Bradford's Telegraph & Argus. Though, of course, the T & A also uses the word 'Asian' as a euphemism for the word Muslim.

More broadly, the Electoral Commission has already identified 16 “high risk” areas across the country: areas where there is a high-risk of electoral malpractice. Now take in the cities and towns cited by the Electoral Commission: e.g., Blackburn, Bradford, Burnley, etc.. and Oldham. All cities and towns with large Muslim populations.

However, the usual suspect, Tower Hamlets, really clinches the deal here. It seems that this London fiefdom can't keep itself out of trouble. It comes with the Muslim territory.

What about Syria?


Sincethe Labour leader is against military intention in Syria, that would have also played well to Rochdale's (Sunni)Muslims. However, Mr Corbyn and Rochdale's Muslims will have very different reasons for being against military intervention in Syria.

Mr Corbyn and his Stop the War Coalition (StWC), on one hand, have a dangerously close relationship with Iran. And Iran, in turn, has a dangerously close relationship with Syria's Bashar Assad (Shia-Alawite) as well as Hezbollah (Shia).

But the clear majority of Oldham's Muslims are Sunni.

That means that before the growth of the Islamic State (IS), many Sunnis in the UK were in favour of military force – force used to try and destroy Assad's “Shia state of Syria”!

And then everything changed.

Now many British Muslims (i.e., Sunnis) will be against military action against their fellow Sunnis of the Islamic State (IS).

Isn't it strange how things change around so quickly?

Hilary Benn's Tony Blair Moment




When Shadow chancellor John McDonnell said that Hilary Benn's speech reminded him of the speech made by Tony Blair just before the Iraq War of 2003, you can be pretty sure that it wasn't meant in an entirely complimentary way. After all, Blair became one of the most despised politicians in recent British history precisley because of that war.

Indeed Mr McDonnell gives with one hand and takes with the other. He gave when he said he was impressed Benn's speech. And he took when he finished off by stating the following:


“I’m always anxious that the greatest oratory is going to lead us to the greatest mistakes.”

Mr McDonnell is right - great oratory can be a disguise for great falsehood. Think of Hitler - the Master Orator.

However, there was nothing to stop a skilled oratory putting the case against air-strikes or war generally. Think of Neville Chamberlain's “peace in our time” speech. That only became renowned after-the-fact. Indeed even though Chamberlain was shown by history to have been a naïve and gullible appeaser, his speech can still be seen as fine oratory. So, yes, Mr McDonnell, “the greatest oratory” can “lead us to great mistakes”. Indeed great oratory can take people in all sorts of direction.

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

EastEnders: Hindu Muslims & Agitprop

 




QUESTION: I’m thinking about the different careers I can be involved in and one of them is acting. I really like acting and am thinking about acting in movies. Would income from acting in movies be considered harraam income?... I would really like to do something that would be Islamically encouraged and one that would please Allah.

ANSWER:
Income from acting in movies is Haraam. This is because of photography which is the main component of movies. In Islam, photography of animate objects is a major sin. Besides photography, there are other sins also involved, e.g. intermingling of sexes, music, fiction, idle pursuit, gossip, etc...

and Allah Ta'ala Knows Best


Mufti Ebrahim Desai


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The Muslim Characters in EastEnders

Kush – played by Davood Ghadami

Tamwar Masood – played by Himesh Patel

Masood Ahmed – played by Nitin Ganatr

Shabnam – played by Rakhee Thakrar

Afia Masood – played by Meryle Fernande

Amira Masood – played by Preeya Kalidas

Ayesha Rana – played by Shivani Ghai

Syed Masood – played by Marc Elliott

Yusef Khan – played by Ace Bhatti

Zainab Khan – played by Nina Wadia

AJ Ahmed – played by Phaldut Ahmed

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EastEnders' Masood Ahmed embracing diversity.

EastEnders has consistently portrayed Islam in a positive light. That's true even when Muslim characters do bad things. That is, the writers make sure that any wrongdoing or suspect behaviour carried out by Muslims has nothing at all to do with Islam. Islam, as ever, is the elephant in the room which no one dare mention... unless what they say is positive!

EastEnders is now featuring the slow conversion of a non-Muslim female character (Nancy Carter) to Islam. To think that this was being shown during and immediately after the Islamic slaughter in Paris. If anything, I would bet that the writers of EastEnders will increase their positive portrayals of Muslims as a result of what happened in Paris.

Yet EastEnders writers must know more about Islam than they do about other religions. They must know, for example, about sharia law. Why is that? Because virtually every Muslim featured in the show so far has been played by either a Hindu or a Sikh (all mainly of Indian descent). Just look at these names above – which immediately give the game away.

So the irony of all this is that EastEnders is proselytising on behalf of Islam at the same time as knowing that Islam has a very dim view of the acting profession (as well as of music, fun, etc.).

EastEnders is also keen on portraying Muslim men having relationships with non-Muslim women. However, there's been no storyline about Muslim women having relationships with non-Muslim men. Why is that? Because Islam allows men to marry non-Muslim women; though it doesn't allow Muslim women to marry non-Muslim men. Thus the writers of EastEnders have conveniently sidestepped this issue as well.

Another issue that EastEnders has ignored is the situation between the two characters, Shabnam and Kush. Shabnam is supposed to be a Muslim of a Sunni Pakistani background. Kush, on the other hand, is supposed to be Iranian. The vast majority of Muslims in Iran are Shia. Sunni and Shia Islam have been at war with each other (on and off) since the 7thcentury. Indeed even in places like Bradford there's been bad feeling between Shia and Sunni Muslims. And, of course, in Iraq, Syria and Pakistani Sunnis frequently carry out terrorist bombings of Shia mosques.

EastEnders sells itself as the show that's “not afraid to tackle serious issues”. That's true... up to a point. However, it has been afraid to show Islam in a negative light, if not Muslims themselves. Sure, sometimes some of the Muslim characters are portrayed in an unflattering light; though the writers cleverly divorce that Muslim bad behaviour from Islam itself. Thus, as ever, Islam itself isn't to blame for anything. Yet it is to blame for the palpable fact that EastEnders producers and writers have to employ non-Muslims to play Muslims!

A Muslim wedding procession right through the heart of Cockney Land















*) The BBC’s portrayal of Muslims is an extreme example of the Leftist ideological notion of “lying for Justice”. It's also pure agitprop (i.e., “agitation”, “propaganda”).

The particular Muslim families has been the home of open gays, drinkers, hipsters, comedians. In actual fact, so far we’ve had gay Muslims, illicit relationships, Muslims in pubs, Muslims in Churches (during weddings/funerals), Muslims fraternising almost exclusively with non-Muslims and, last but not least, a Muslim wedding-procession (with music, etc.) through the streets of an otherwise cockney neighbourhood.

The writers of EastEnders? I can only (partly) guess. They'll be mainly - or exclusively – white, middle-class Leftists (or Left-Liberals).

The writers of EastEnders will indeed see soap drama as entertainment: though entertainment necessarily mixed with numerous social and political messages. Their purpose is to both entertain and to educate.

Of course EastEnders is sometimes entertaining! How could the writers' political and social messages get through to many people if those messages weren’t tarted up with some good-old-fashioned soap entertainment? Hell, even Leftists don’t want to preach to an empty audience.

So the silly fictions about Muslims and Muslim families (amidst an almost-exclusively white community) don’t matter much. The lies don’t matter. The surreal and absurd situations don’t matter if they get various and many social or political points across.

None of that matters. The Leftist/liberal writers of EastEnders are indulging in good old-fashioned agitprop. Sure, such agitprop isn’t as bad as it was in the 1960s and 1970s; but it's still pretty blatant.

The writers are tacitly suggesting to its viewers that Islam "is just like any other religion" and that Muslims are just like the people at a BBC dinner party.

Everyone I've ever spoken to finds the EastEnders' Muslim families both unreal and absurd. But that doesn't matter. What matters is that these fictions (or lies) help the fight against the perceived racism of Islam's critics. And we all know that every Muslim on the planet belongs to the same race or ethnicity... don't we?

Sunday, 15 November 2015

The British PM vs. the European Union? No, not really



Tory Eurosceptic John Redwood summed up what is – or what should be – at the heart of the debate about the European Union. He said: "It's about more than borders and migration: it's about who governs."

Of course immigration and borders are important subjects; though they become almost irrelevant if those who call the shots aren't listening to the British government, let alone the people of Britain. In other words, in order to sort out the mess that is mass immigration, we have to ask (as Redwood put it) “who governs us?”. The fact is that on this and on other issues unelected bureaucrats and European politicians govern the UK. And they're all in favour of mass immigration and open borders. Or, to use the EU jargon, these Europhiles firmly believe in the “free movement of peoples”.

UKIP leader, Nigel Farage, has also focussed on the fact that the“democratic deficit” is the core problem. He said that David Cameron "is not aiming for any substantial renegotiation" and that there's


"no promise to regain the supremacy of Parliament, nothing on ending the free movement of people and no attempt to reduce Britain's massive contribution to the EU budget".

Labour's shadow chancellor, John McDonnell, also said that Cameron's words were "a lot of bluff and bluster". The majority of British people agree.

McDonnellfinished off by saying that Cameron is “appeasing” Tory backbenchers. That's true too... up to a point. However, McDonald obvious meant that Cameron is appeasing Tory Eurosceptics. Yet the fact is that it can just as easily be said that he's appeasing Tory Europhiles. After all, the Europhiles have a stronger position in the Conservative Party (at present) than the sceptics. In fact Cameron is probably trying to appease both Eurosceptics and Europhiles at the same time. That's the sort of politician he is. In other words, if he can appease both sceptics and Europhiles, then that will guarantee him continued power within the Tory Party. Of course in principle it's almost impossible to appease two mutually-contradictorysegments of a party. Nonetheless, that's clearly what Cameron is trying to do.

The other strange thing is that Labour's position (or the Opposition's position) is more or less the same as Cameron's. After all, McDonald said that we need to "negotiate our reform agenda as members of the club", which is exactly what Cameron is saying.

What are David Cameron's new demands in the run-up to the opt-in-or-out vote in 2017? They include, in the BBC's words, the following:

    i) Protection of the single market for Britain and other non-euro countries.
    ii) Boosting competitiveness by setting a target for the reduction of the "burden" of red tape.
    iii) Exempting Britain from "ever-closer union" and bolstering national parliaments.
    iv) Restricting EU migrants' access to in-work benefits such as tax credits.
     
     
    i) and ii) above are vague beyond comprehension. Deliberately so, of course. (Has any European politician ever argued against cutting red tape?) As for iii). It can justifiably be said that the very nature of the EU (along with its principles and laws) is designed to bring about an “ever-closer union” between the EU's central institutions and national parliaments. Finally, iv) is a no-no because it infringes fundamental European law on the “free movement of peoples”.
     
    So not only are those four claims vague and unachievable, Lord Lawson also said that they're “disappointingly unambitious”.
     
    Just how difficult Cameron's task is can be shown by the simple fact that in order to bring about radical change he'd need the cooperation of the other 27 European Union countries. Now of course some of those countries do indeed benefit from the EU – specifically when it comes inter-European immigration (including emigrating to the UK). So that's a few countries which would say 'no' to start off with.
     
    What's more, a spokesman for the Commission President, Jean-Claude Juncker, said that talk about cutting benefits is "highly problematic" because it impacted on "fundamental freedoms of our internal market". In addition, it added up to "direct discrimination between EU citizens".
     
    As David Cameron, the British people and the EU's unelected bureaucracy all know, any talk about doing something radical and concrete about immigration is basically just that – talk.Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond exemplified this all-talk-no-action facade when he said that the the government is indeed open to ideas about how to reduce immigration. Yes, open to ideas and ideas alone. That is, open to more talk and little (or no) action.
     
    You know these forthcoming discussions are a “gimmick” when you take on board what the European Commission has said about them. It says that any changes in benefits for immigrants would break free-movement laws. In non-EU speak, that means that they will break these laws because it's the European Commission itself that helped create them in the first place.
     
    Cameron himself tacitly admits that there can (or will) be no change on immigration when he said the following:



"I understand how difficult some of these welfare issues are for some member states, and I'm open to different ways of dealing with this issue."


So there's very little room for manoeuvre - even when it comes to the fact that 40% of recent EU-area immigrants - even some they have jobs- receive (on average) £6,000 a year in state benefits. Put simply, the fact that some actually have jobs is almost immediately cancelled out by that £6,000 a year of benefits they receive.



In a sense it's almost impossible to restrict benefits to recent and long-term immigrants. It just won't work. It won't work because if benefits were completely cut - or even severely restricted - you'd then have many immigrants living below the breadline. That would result in more crimes and an outcry from the “rights industry”:i.e., from Leftist lawyers, professors and journalists. In other words, what would happen if immigrants suddenly found themselves without any money whatsoever? Two things may happen. One, they'd try to price out indigenous labour. Two, they'd resort to crime.
 

The solution to this is simple: don't let any immigrants in unless they have definite skills which the UK genuinely requires. There can be no other reason for immigration at this moment in time. Since we've already imported at least seven millionimmigrants in the last 15 years, we're now left with a situation which requires radical policies and action.

Thursday, 5 November 2015

Jean Baudrillard vs. America?

Paul Murphy's photo.




Jean Baudrillard was a well-known French philosopher and sociologist. He died in 2007.

Baudrillard, along with Jean-François Lyotard, more or less invented postmodernism – or at least he provided its theoretical underpinnings. He also said (amongst other things) that “[r]eality itself is too obvious to be true” and that “truth does not exist”[in Fragments: Cool Memories III].


As hinted at, Baudrillard is often sold to the public as a“postmodernist” and a lover of America. Marxist writers - such aChristopher Norris, Frederic Jameson andAlex Callinicos -have been particularly critical of Baudrillard's seemingly“pro-American” stance. Yet until he was 40 (in 1969) Baudrillard was (more or less) a revolutionary Marxist. And it can also be seen that despite the criticism he has got from Marxists/socialists for his “relativism”, “support of the status quo” and “lack of political commitment”, the ghost of Marx still haunted him. Much of what he did, essentially, was to take some of Marx's theories and ideas in a radically new direction.


Since postmodernism has just been mentioned, I'll let Baudrillard himself tell you what postmodernism actually is. He wrote:


Postmodernity is... a culture of fragmentary sensations, eclectic nostalgia, disposable simulacra, and promiscuous superficiality, in which the traditionally valued qualities of depth, coherence, meaning, originality, and authenticity are evacuated or dissolved amid the random swirl of empty signals.”


As for Baudrillard's indebtedness to Marxism, what’s non-Marxist or postmodernist about, for example, talk of a “classless society”and the “naturalisation of the proletariat”? There are many other aspects of Baudrillard’s thought which are Marxist in tone and in political objectives/hopes. For example, his critiques of the “bourgeoisie” and “capitalist humanism”; along with his fetishisation of "Otherness" and talk of “liberation”and “emancipation”.


What Baudrillard did, then, was substitute certain Marxist variables (i.e., theories and technical terms) and juggle them around a little. Thus Baudrillard kept himself in the Marxist épistème and then played his postmodernist games within it.


Again, it may still seem strange to class Baudrillard as, well, a lapsed Marxist. So just sample this wee diatribe against liberal democracies to be going on with:



“One has never said better how much 'humanism', 'normality', 'quality of life' were nothing but the vicissitudes of profitability.”[Simulacra and Simulation]


As for Baudrillard's texts, quite frankly you often don't know what to make of them. Is it poetry? Is it prose? Or is it philosophy? Is it all these things?


If it's philosophy, then if you take his statements literally, almost all of them come out false, meaningless or as silly - though sexy- generalisations. Thus none of his pronouncements can be taken literally: we have Baudrillard's word on that. He once urged us to“[n]ever resist a sentence you like, in which language takes its own pleasure”.


                                    *****************************************


America& Americans


When you read Baudrillard, you get a huge sense of a French intellectual being condescending towards America and Americans. After all, the French are known to have a low opinion of all things American. And if you add to that the extreme pretentiousness and outré radicalism of French philosophy, then Baudrillard's America is one result.


According to Baudrillard, America has no history. Or to use Baudrillard's own prose: “America ducks the questions of origins.” He goes on to say that America “cultivates no origin or mythical authenticity”.It addition to that: “it has no past and no founding truth”.


Yes, despite the museums, the American Civil War, the abolition of slavery, the fight against the British state, etc., America has no history. Or at least according to a French intellectual America has no history. But, then again, are you meant to take these oracular pronouncements literally?

Disneyland

Various postmodernists, post-structuralists and other philosophers (includingSlavoj Žižek, Judith Butler, etc.) often talk about what they call “the real” (sometimes with a Platonic 'R'). Baudrillard is no exception to this. To put it as simply as he doesn't put it: America is unreal. Disneyland is real.


To put more meat on that claim, Baudrillard tells us that “Disneyland exists in order to hide that it is the 'real' country, all of 'real' America that is Disneyland”. More specifically, “Disneyland is presented as imaginary in order to make us believe that the rest is real”. This inversion of real for the unreal works as some kind of "ideological blanket” to hide the monumental truth (yes,truth) that the entirety of American life is a “simulation”[from Simulacra and Simulation].


What we have here is an “ideological representation of reality” which pretends not to be an ideological representation of reality. Thus Baudrillard is effectively giving new life to ancient Marxist dogmas. That is, this American ideology is “concealing the fact that the real is no longer real, and thus of saving the reality principle”. Yes, he's resurrected two classic Marxist tropes:“false consciousness” (or “manufactured consent”, as Chomsky puts it) and ideology as “class rule”.


That's America's (lack of) history dealt with. What about its politics?


It should come as no surprise that this postmodernist ex-revolutionary Marxist believed that America


is a world completely rotten with wealth, power, senility, indifference, puritanism and mental hygiene, poverty and waste, technological futility and aimless violence”.


He goes on to say that America is a “[a]norexic culture” and “a culture of disgust, of expulsion, of anthropoemia, of rejection”. A land of “obesity, saturation, overabundance”. Feel that smug hatred underneath the fairytale that Baudrillard actually embraced America and all things American.


So what did Baudrillard think about Americans?


Well, apparently “Americans may have no identity, but they do have wonderful teeth”. As you can see, Baudrillard's racist condescension of Americans knew no bounds. (Be sure, he wasn't talking about American blacks or recent immigrants.) This stuff reads like the Der Stürmer of the postmodern age. I mean this man thought that Americans can't even “analyse or conceptualize”. So does all this effectively mean that Baudrillard believed that all white Americans were essentially subhuman?


Sinful Poverty: Sinful Wealth


Baudrillard’s take on “consumerism” is also firmly set within a Marxist paradigm.


This time, instead of “capitalist ideology” integrating classes (which should otherwise be at war with each other), consumerism does that trick instead. Baudrillard believes that to be the case primarily because all classes (from the proletariat to the upper-class) consume pretty much the same things: from Rihanna to microwaves to chat shows.


Baudrillard even has the audacity to say that the US is a “country... without hope”. Apparently America is without hope because “its garbage is clean, its trade lubricated, its traffic pacified”.


Yes, once upon a time Leftists criticised America for creating - and then allowing - poverty and inequality. Then, in the 1950s and 60s, the very same Leftists criticised the very same country for its“consumerism” and “decadence”.


Baudrillard himself is part of a tradition which goes all the way back to, amongst other things, Herbert Marcuse's One-DimensionalMan (written in 1964). So although Marcuse wasn't as poetic and pretentious as Baudrillard, he might well have written Baudrillard's following words:


... life is so liquid, the signs and messages are so liquid, the bodies and the cars are so fluid, the hair so blond, and the soft technologies so luxuriant...”


False Consciousness & the Hyperreal


Even Baudrillard’s notion of the “hyperreal” can be seen as a Marxist construct. Or at least it must have fed off a particularly Marxist way of looking at things.


In this instance, instead of the “false consciousness” of the working class being a phenomenon of, well, consciousness; this time false consciousness is found in “what we take to be reality”.This is the ancient philosophical - and then Marxist - distinction between “reality and appearance”. So with Baudrillard’s“hyperreality” we have nothing but “simulations” which people (the working class again?) take to be reality.


And because capitalism is essentially about selling products, everything becomes (or must become) a product – even reality itself. Thus the Gulf War of 1990/1, according Baudrillard, was also a product. It was a “simulation”.“Hyperreal”. The Gulf War simply “did not take place”.


Thus the “capitalist Media” gets to work on reality and in so doing it turns reality into hyperreality. A system of “sign-values” which are variously “aesthetisised” for our consumption and enjoyment –even the killings and bombings of the Gulf War.


Conclusion


To sum up. The central claim in this piece isn't that Baudrillard was a outright Marxist or even a kind of Marxist. It's simply to argue that he was profoundly influenced by Marxism and that this influence can be seen in his philosophical work. Thus Baudrillard fell into the snare of Marxism as so many others have done. (Marx himself fell into the snare of Hegel.)


In the late 1960s and early 1970s, Baudrillard must have come to believe that Marxism had atrophied – as it had. Thus, despite still using Marxist theories and even Marxist technical terms, he set off in his own direction. I can't say if he was attempting to rejuvenate Marxism or to simply leave it well behind. Whatever the case may be, it's clear that countless Marxist intellectuals found the move from Marxism to postmodernism (as well as to structuralism and post-structuralism) very easy and indeed natural. Baudrillard, Derrida and Lyotard, for example, kept the same political goals and hopes they had when they were Marxists; though they went about achieving them in very different ways.


In the future, Jean Baudrillard may be seen as a true successor to Marx.



Friday, 16 October 2015

Nazis seek to join the Conservative Party's 'Strength' group


Members of the English Nazi Party seek to join the Conservative Party's 'Strength' group.

There are fresh questions over the new Strength group (set up deep within the Conservative Party) after it emerged that the National Socialist English Workers' Party is encouraging its members to sign up.

Strength presents itself as the successor organisation to David Cameron's successful campaign in May 2015. It has been welcomed by Mr Cameron and Chancellor George Osborne. But some centrist Conservative Party figures have expressed concern that it could be used as a vehicle to murder moderate Tory MPs.

The National Socialist English Workers' Party website reads:

Strength doesn't seem restricted to Conservative Party members, though it says it will aim to encourage people to join the Tory Party. We should go along to any local Strength meetings with the aim of taking over the Conservative Party, which is something we're very good at.”

Meanwhile,The Times reports that Tory MPs who defied Mr Cameron and abstained on the fiscal charter have been inundated with emails from unhappy Nazis. There was criticism of the Tory whips’ office for putting out the names of the 21 MPs who opposed the party line. One of the MPs said:

I’ve never seen the whips’ office behave like this. They put our names up in lights on social media, effectively telling the Nazi Brown Shirts to come and get us — they have duly obliged.”

Strength's mission is to “transform” the Conservative Party into a
Sir John Major in his prime.


“genuine nationalist and socialist entity and to bring about a mass movement for change - for real racial, nationalist and socialist change in every town and city change. And for genuine change... As well as change....”

Former Conservative leader Sir John 'No Panties' Major said:

I hope that Davy Boy will develop this new, fresh and virile politics, but I also hope that it will be the open politics that he’s preached because we don’t want organisations setting up like Strength, which that’s been established this week, being a party within a party within a party, and I think that’s the challenge for Davy Boy.”

Finally, the Nazi Party website reads:

Many Nazi socialists will consider joining Cameron's party to defend him, but is it the right move for racial nationalists and socialists such as unto us?

Sir Alexander Theodore Callinicos and Lord Charles Kimber [of the Nazi Party Central Committee] have outlined how important it is for Nazis— even revolutionary ones — to back and defend Cameron. But if we’re so keen to help Cameron hang onto his position, why don’t we just join the Conservative Party? Surely that’s where the battle will take place and where Cameron needs numbers of defenders against the left of the party?”



We can only wait and see what the British public thinks of these very strong and widespread collaborations between the Conservative Party and the National Socialist English Workers' Party.

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Fukuyama's Dangerous Biological Truths


Francis Fukuyama has stated what he takes to be certain biological truths. Consequently, many on the Left have come down as strongly on Fukuyama as virulently as they have done previously on any other kind of truth that doesn't fit their agenda.

For example, Fukuyama says that men

have a biological disposition to be more promiscuous and less discriminating than women in their search for sexual gratification”.

This is where Leftists commit the is/ought fallacy. (Sometimes intentionally, sometimes not.) That is, when scientists (of whatever description) say that

Xis the case.

that doesn't mean that they also believe that

Xought to be the case.

In fact knowing that X is the case means that you can do something about X (if society or individuals so desire). In this case, saying that men are
“more promiscuous and less discriminating than women in their search for sexual gratification”
isn't to say that this is a good or a bad thing. It's to say that it's a... thing. Not only that: this fact is true “statistically” and over “large populations” (as Fukuyama puts it). In other words, it's not true of every man who's ever existed on the planet. In addition, this isn't a denial of female promiscuity either. How could it be?

The thing is that some (perhaps the minority) of Leftists know they're committing the is/ought fallacy when they criticise such statements. However, that doesn't matter. They believe that too many people knowing certain truths or facts (or, rather patronisingly, “misusing”certain truths or facts), is a state of affairs they simply can't allow. Thus Fukuyama and other scientists must be reprimanded, ridiculed and, in some cases, even denied tenure. Certain truths or facts are deemed to be dangerous by Leftists.

Fukuyama himself comments on this Leftist denial of truth as it can be found in sociology.

As many people know, sociology has been a largely left-wing discipline - especially since the 1960s. That doesn't need to be the case. Leftism or “progressivism” isn't (as it were) built into sociology. Nonetheless, that Leftist bias is why Fukuyama says the following:

The more I read the more it became evident that the social sciences were operating on a principle that was ideologically based.”

This has been particularly true of biological phenomena as they are interpreted by sociologists. I mentioned male and female sexuality before: Fukuyama says that sociology took this Leftwards turn as a“reaction to the Holocaust and to the genuine misuses of biology by assorted racists and bigots”. What's more, the social sciences “had been turned in the opposite direction – to say that one's genetic basis meant nothing”.

Perhaps more importantly, Fukuyama himself interprets biology politically. (Thus it can be said that he's contradicting himself.)

For example, knowledge of biological givens

shows you that there are certain constraints in social engineering that limit the kind of society you can create”.

Consequently, the many 20th century experiments in communism “provide a negative lesson that there are certain types of utopias that aren't realizable”.

Reference

Fukuyama, Francis. (1999) quoted in Predictions: 30 Great Minds on the Future