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Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Human Malice and Ethics

In the late 1980’s I rented accommodation in the same house as two women from Zimbabwe. It came as a surprise to me and my politically correct friends that these ladies were not only jingoistic but profoundly racist.  In retrospect it was illogical, an act of unintended ignorance that we could consider ethnicity, religious affiliation or historical experience as being a bar to prejudice.  Being ‘Black’ and having successfully overthrown the ‘White’ devil regime (Rhodesia) these women knew that because they had suffered only they had the right to judge what was ethical and what was not; only they could define racism.

I then met two ‘doctors’ who had escaped from Poland in the 1970’s and pursued careers in computing science in the UK. They were Catholics.  As was I suppose inevitable, one day they were talking about their homeland. They referred to The Poles and The Jews of Poland.  I naively corrected their ethnic subversion by clarifying that they meant Polish Catholics and Polish Jews. These computer scientists looked at me with pained confusion. Poles were Poles and Jews were Jews. Aryan ideology saw both Slavs and Jews as racially inferior and as being unworthy of existence. A thousand years of national co-existence and the annihilation of three million Polish Catholics and three million Polish Jews meant nothing to this son and daughter of Poland.  Though both Jews and Catholics had suffered Nazi purification my Polish Catholic acquaintances were intellectually incapable of internalising either a shared humanity or, a shared national identity.

But before we condemn either Africa or Europe for this shared racism I recall my discussions with our Arab and non-Arab but Muslim brethren. And they were no different. Edward Said, a towering intelligence and distinguished professor of Harvard University was responsible for much of the moral relativism (different cultures have different standards) and moral equivalence (it is considered acceptable to murder babies because asymmetrical warfare creates the necessity that justifies the action) the Left uses to validate atrocity and genocide in the Islamic world.  Professor Said admitted that even as a Christian, he was sorely jealous of his Muslim brothers because, to be a true Arab one needed the ‘superior’ historic attachment to Muhammad that only a ‘believer’ could genuinely possess.

The universalism of the Left failed to challenge this hypocrisy or perhaps it was simply a fact that the Left was always ethically insipient.

Dozens of racial groups survive in the Near East and all of them have been persecuted by the Arab Conquerors. The dream of global conquest and control has rarely diminished since Muhammad burst out of the Arabian Peninsula in the Seventh Century CE (AD). But that conquest has meant cultural colonisation and theft, ethnic cleansing and genocide.  Animists, Black Christians, Jews, Marsh Arabs, Armenians, Kurds and Assyrians (the massacre of Assyrians in Northern Iraq in 1933 inspired Polish lawyer Raphael Lemkin to coin the word “genocide”).  The Left says nothing but then, rarely either, does the right.
The UN was created out of the ashes of world war two to facilitate dialogue and by multilateral interaction to foreclose on human conflict.  Instead, it remains, like its League of Nations predecessor an Orwellian gaggle of politically promiscuous purveyors of propaganda and elegantly concocted malice. Perhaps that is unfair, a prostitute, by professional design, is indiscriminate while the UN is very discriminating in its targeting of lies.

Here in the UK from time to time we hear that a right wing extremist has been found to be working for some government department or a privatised utility and that we must all be protected from their pernicious and evil influence by their immediate exclusion from the workplace.  But members of the Socialist Workers Party and their Islamic Fundamentalist co-conspirators are permitted to roam freely our corridors even though the threat from them is no less and perhaps even greater.  I have discussed calmly and with careful consideration for the sensitivity of my Muslim acquaintances feelings, their perceptions and desires.  What has most surprised me is the disconnect between the suit and tie, the honeyed words flowing from flawless and refined English mouths and their insistence that human slavery is a natural state of existence. They would never publicly demand a Black racial return to forced indenture but tell the rest of us infidels that we should all choose to live under slavery’s benign Islamic mantle.

So when people tell me that I should be less fearful and more trusting of others intentions, I am unable to make of the enlightenment, my teacher.  I have no desire to pour over the history books for examples of beacons of tolerance and love. All I need is to examine the manifest hypocrisy of my modern Western masters.  Those who always insist only I must turn the other cheek help me to recognize the intellectual decline of Western thought and its concomitant resurgence of and identifying with an anti-Semitic tradition; the all too common insistence that for the sake of world peace and human justice only I need to fall on my own sword.

David Mamet recently wrote that Israel is the modern embodiment of the latent need for human sacrifice.  Perhaps it is the best explanation we have for how we came to excuse hate, proudly celebrated as the legal expression of a particular illumination.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

The Arab ‘Spring’, the Israeli Winter

Moshe Arens, a former foreign minister under Menachem Begin in analysing the Arab Spring summarised its salient features as encompassing the following: No respect for human rights, oppression of women, contempt for democratic values; a school system that is backward and encourages ignorance (even in its graduates) and a radical religious population which is increasing as a percentage of the whole.  The recent Egyptian election results recorded over 34% voting for the religiously chauvinistic Muslim Brotherhood and 26% voting for the even more violently racist Salafist movement.

The question must be asked, how is the direction in which Israel is headed any different to its Arab protagonists? It is a question being increasingly raised by foreign officials and Israelis alike.

There is nothing intrinsically wrong with the celebration of ethnicity. We are all born with labels. Some labels we inherit from our parents while others are imposed on us by society. Too often labels serve no more than to impose the values or prejudices of one group onto another, to reinforce our comfortable prejudices.  When society applies different rules to separate groups it is a form of legalised and intermittent apartheid (another label).

Labels make up our identity.

Identity was initially defined by tribe then by religion and then by nationality. For many of us, it still is.  In the Western world ‘nationality’ supplanted religion in self-identification but did not supersede it.  Religion defined groups and helped create unique national identities.  Built upon multiple layers, identity reinforced the primary group collective.  Again, labels: ethnic, cultural, educational and historical define us.

In totalitarian societies labels are used not only to define limits but also to compartmentalise those who are empowered, those who are disenfranchised and the multiplicity of perceived ‘threats’ in between.

All nations are idiosyncratic. By failing to construct a narrative that unites the nation, Israel has created a mishmash of competing communities for whom tribal allegiances are more important than national consensus. 

Contrast this with the Arab 'world' and the difference could easily pose an existential threat not just to Israel but to all humanity. In attempting to unify all people under ‘the’ one god, the Islamic world created a malevolency of violence and benighted prejudice and Israel is now infected by it.  I repeat; by adapting the Arab-Islamic model of intolerance Israel has itself become contaminated. Israel’s political model is one that respects no-one; its most salient feature is its contempt for diversity of opinion.  The sclerotic fiction bound prejudice of the Arab world justifies every betrayal for its race and its god; the Jewish people must not follow their model.

A people incapable of standing as one will fall as one.  We arrived here because we allowed contempt to take the place of honest dissent. Pure proportional representation empowered a political minority with immense influence far in excess of its numeric size.  Xenophobic pronouncements feed fear, not compromise. But also consider how Israel permitted its university professors to demonise the country. Freedom of speech tolerates the urge to self-destruction but why do we pay our teachers to counsel their students on how they may also self-destruct? This masochistic impulse is one chronic symptom of an immature society that is struggling with and neurotically conflicted by its identity.  Fascism of the Left or of the Right, will always exploit self-abuse which is rightly viewed as a sign of inherent weakness. McCarthyism has been a leftist weapon used to intimidate anyone with whom they differed since the 1960’s. The extremists of anti-Americanism and anti-Israeli’ism share a platform with a pride they would be unable to justify were they to apply the same standards to Islam or Europe.  The gauleiters of political correctness reject diversity of thought because it means accepting that there is more than one path to salvation.

If democracy is synonymous with populism then the early twentieth century’s irresponsibility by which the ruling elites dragged the world into two world wars can only be repeated in the twenty-first century because we have renounced responsibility for an ethical domestic or foreign policy.  It is too easy to blame it all on economics.

Gadi Taub in an opinion piece in Israeli newspaper 'Yediot Achranot' commented that the elections in Egypt did not signify a positive change for the people. He said that “liberating the masses may be the dawn of a new oppression”.

This same trend applies across the globe but a nation that has never known freedom has a greater danger of transferring power from one tyranny to another, even more bloody and with less restraint because the escalation in violence is implicit in the mandate. Witness Russia under Communism and Iran under Khomeini'ism.

The internal threat to society is as great as the external threat. Betrayal does not usually come with a tattooed label.  Israel needs national unity; polarisation is an intellectual failure to which all political parties share guilt, equally. And Israeli laws currently being discussed that target specific groups are not just bad laws, they are divisive and anti-democratic laws.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Democracy in peril

When I first stayed in Israel, almost 40 years ago, I observed the behaviours of Western verses Mizrahi sects of ultra orthodox Judaism as being synonymous with the conflicting visions of modernity and conservatism that divided the nation of secular and religious Jew.   Tainted by centuries of persecution and displaying a reactionary response to modernism much of the orthodox world ejected Judaism’s humanistic values and embraced the misogynistic narrative of the cultures from which they so scrupulously stood apart.  But not the Mizrahim (the Jews of Arab lands).

They, like their western cousins were discriminated against, occasionally they were persecuted and killed.  In Israel almost 40 years ago I observed two male Mizrahi ultra orthodox Jews seated next to each other on a bus. It was a long journey from Jerusalem in the South to Safed in the far north. A pregnant woman got onto the bus and one of the men immediately jumped up to let her sit down.

Today, on a bus filled with the ultra orthodox, that woman would remain standing for the entire journey.  Prejudice has triumphed over piety and we in our naivety and indifference excuse this behaviour and call it ‘respect’. We have allowed ignorance to flower.

Israel, as ‘light unto the nations,’ or at least as a light unto its immediate neighbours, is not doing a good job in Parliament.   Verbal violence and the compulsion to call ones rivals ‘Nazis’ and ‘traitors’ is neither congruent with moderation in speech nor demonstrably classifiable as restrained behavior. Our parliamentarians should lead by example. They do not.  Israel needs an independent Standards committee with powers of enforcement that is able to define Knesset ethics.  Provide them with the greater authority to examine standards for all bodies and individuals receiving public funds, and to determine standards of public discourse for everyone drawing on state monies. Calling MK and Science Minister Daniel Herskowitz a Nazi and threatening him, because he is a member of a right wing government that evacuated three illegal settlements, is a frightening development.

The conceit of some to propose legislation against left wing organizations that are in receipt of overseas donations while excluding donations received by the ‘right wing,’ is similarly alarming. I recall Amos Elon writing that four years after World War One had ended Germany had suffered 376 political murders; 22 by leftists (sentenced to a combined total of 248 years in prison) and 354 murders by rightists who between them received a total of 90 years in prison.  Terror begins with the variable application of the rule of law.

A national debate on standards is required if Israel is not going to end up as just one more sad Near Eastern dictatorship.  Left and Right are equally at fault in this failure of debate.

There are those that will argue against any self-control because in the interlude of passionately held belief it is wrong to conceal ones true feelings or fears. But when we call our adversaries ‘Nazis’ or dismiss them as ‘traitors’ we are expressing more than our beliefs, we are labelling our enemy and rejecting debate as without any value. The British parliamentary model of decorum may be an extreme but it has lasted for almost a thousand years.  It works.

Abuse encourages corruption.  The intent of David Ben-Gurion and his ruling party in enshrining the religious / secular status-quo in 1948, leaving religion to the religious instead of formally separating synagogue and state was that they assumed congruence between ethics and religiosity. The problem is that values are a set of beliefs by which you live your life and beliefs are no more than a structured system of values.  Notice the absence of universal ethical constraints.

When an unrepresentative group holds disproportionate political and economic power against the public interest it damages democracy and the best will flee. Israel cannot afford to encourage separation between religious and secular Israelis in education, housing, the military and the workplace.  Without equality resentment festers and violence grows. Secular Israelis must have a voice in their religious destiny because the multiple Jewish sects are too busy defending their own special interests to be morally responsible for our welfare, or the States.

Universal conscription should be without exception and I would excommunicate the Neturei Karta. You cannot live in a country and actively work against its survival. That they justify their actions on religious grounds does not cancel out the crime against the State or its people. MK’s must sign an oath of allegiance and that means they are Israeli and if they are not, they cannot be a member of parliament. They represent not only their constituents, they also represent the nation. If they do not, then they should find employment elsewhere.  This would create problems for some of the more racist Arab MK’s who stand shoulder to shoulder with their racist Arab brothers against the Jewish population of Israel.  But democracy cannot survive unless it has a core set of beliefs to which all are wholly committed.

To desegregate communities, students should be bussed in until populations cease to be islands of prejudiced uniformity or ghettos of ignorant bliss.

I recall the horrified look on the face of a Hasidic friend when I attempted to scribble down his telephone number on the back of my hand. He explained that it was wrong to do so because we are all human and to write on our bodies is to scribble on Gods work. This universalism did not apply to one people, one race, one religion or one orientation.  It is an extreme view but essentially it is an expression of humility before the creator. Now the ultra-orthodox burn down bus shelters that display what they have decided is inappropriate; they spit at women dressed ‘immodestly’ and they spit on people different to them. They have forgotten the teachings of the Torah and it is they who today defile the creator.  Humility has been replaced with intolerance and spite.

Israel with its imperfect and dysfunctional democracy is threatened by extremism and intolerance no less than its neighbours. A series of legislative efforts by the extreme right and orthodox measures accepted by local authorities are a threat to freedom. It is only right for foreign donors whether they are individuals, charities or nations to be registered and that the public should know who they are. Some of them work with the State; many of them are working against it. In the USA all foreign funding must be registered. That is fair. There is nothing intrinsically wrong in being a lobbyist for a foreign entity. But let it all be out in the open.  If it is not, it undermines the level playing field that is part of the fabric of a democratic nation’s strength.   Foreign financial intervention can have the intent to rend the fabric of national consensus or support an antagonist against the consensus.

But the extreme right demands that only “Left wing” donations be registered in its currently debated legislation. This is a grotesque attack on democracy.  A law that targets one group or another is not just a bad law; it is an anti-democratic law.

And to limit the presence of women in the public domain is to encourage the talibanisation of Israel and the Islamisation of Judaism. It is an obscene reaction by a community that is afflicted with an obsessive self worth bordering on idolatry. The oppression of women and their exclusion from society is symptomatic of a community that has lost its Jewish identity and sociopathically externalised its own neurotic fears.

At the beginning of the twenty-first century Israel’s Supreme Court ruled that “an ideological battle must not be waged at the expense of someone who refuses to be sacrificed on its altar.”   The violence of language has not diminished and ideological exuberance remains a poor excuse for libel.

Israel desperately needs an independent public standards authority that is mandated by Parliament to oversee Parliament. Contempt must have its penalties.  To suspend without pay those people in public employment who are unable to control their speech is a good start. And impeachment should be the response we offer to those people who sail with our enemies or attempt to erase our history. It is time to rein in ‘Lashon ha ra’ – the evil tongue.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Know your enemies as you would know yourself

Israel has a problem. Free speech is never absolute. Throughout the free world violence against those who speak out against Islam is creating the effect its perpetrators desired.  Fear. Intellectual apartheid has arisen across the globe. To criticise Islam for its violence and its blood lust is made unacceptable by fear and by economics. Oil and 1,400 million potential customers make for a persuasive silence in choosing ones sleeping partners. Islam has made the UN its propaganda tool and its cash cow. To defame Jews and to demonise Israel is wholly acceptable. Aided and abetted by the fascist left a kind of intellectual autism informs debate. There can be no other explanation for the excessive doctrinal rigidity that permits Muslims, Arabs and their fellow travellers to commit every abuse against human rights but denies Israel the basic rights we in the West take for granted.

It is with this in mind that Israel, surrounded by hostility, is urged by the current US Defence Secretary Leon Panetta today (3rd December 2011) to address what he describes as ‘The Jewish States growing isolation in the Middle East’.

He suggested that Israel reach out and ‘mend fences’ with countries like Turkey, Egypt and Jordan which share an interest in regional stability. He also said that Israel and the Palestinians should ‘get back to the damned table’.

He acknowledged that “If the gestures are rebuked, the world will see those rebukes for what they are and that is exactly why Israel should pursue them."

It sounds fine. But nothing in the extreme anti-Zionist debate that has taken place over the last decade or two supports Leon Panetta’s view.

And Israel is as much to blame for this state of international affairs as its Western interlocutors.

Israel exists because it is a reaction to Islamic, Arab colonialism and prejudice.
Israel exists because Islam is incapable of peacefully co-existing with any minority in its midst except under conditions of Islamic institutionalised inequality.
Israel exists because Jewish Palestinians have a right to self-determination.
Israel exists because the Arab world is inherently racist.

Israel exists because the Jewish state could absorb and did absorb Jewish refugees from the Arab world. This is the same neighbourhood that discriminated against them, and ultimately, ethnically cleansed them from their ‘pure Arab’ lands. And today Israel absorbs black Christian and black Muslim refugees.  The Arab world rapes and kills its refugees. The Arab world has built concentration camps for its refugees and as the third generation of Palestinians are born in its Arab lands it continues to refuse to absorb even a single individual and illegally, denies them the choice of citizenship.

The Muslim nations of Turkey, Malaysia, Indonesia, Pakistan, Iran and Afghanistan – these nations have all been guilty of ethnic cleansing and at least one or two, of genocide.

Israel should be paying attention to the discrimination, religious bigotry and anti-Semitic propaganda of its neighbours because it is a fundamental construct of the war being waged against it and an inseparable trait of Islamic theological identity. It is a failure of Secular Israel that even without a constitution, Israel is more extreme in its anti-religious identity than any other nation at the UN and because of this it is incapable of seriously addressing any issue that has a religious basis to it.

Israel is isolated because the Islamic world smells blood and is excited by it. Israel is isolated because its diplomatic corps is its most dysfunctional government department. Finally, Israel is isolated because it is politically paralysed and ideologically adrift.

Defence Secretary Leon Panetta would be a little more reluctant to point out Israel’s diplomatic failures without first addressing Israel’s neighbours prejudices if Israel consistently stood up for itself and was diplomatically more assertive in the international field.  You cannot win a propaganda war if you do not participate in the debate.

If I am not for myself, who will be for me? And when I am for myself, what am 'I'? And if not now, when?" Hillel, Sayings of the Fathers.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Israel Bibi Netanyahu and The USA

In all the debate around defence and security in Israel it appears that we too often forget the reason behind Israel’s need for security.

Even neutral nations must have national service and strong military establishments. Japan and Germany call theirs “Self Defence Services”.   The Swiss Armed Forces are viewed as being essential to the maintenance of Swiss neutrality. But an army and an air-force remain instruments of war even when they are labelled as being for self-defence. Pacifism only works when all nations are equally committed to adhering to its principles, otherwise sadly, to demonstrably persuade a potential enemy against interference and hostile intent one must possess deterrence and the stronger the force the greater that deterrence.

Israel is a country at war. It has been ‘at war’ for a longer period than England, which fought the War of the Roses (32 years) and perhaps for not quite as long as the Hundred Years War was fought (118 years).

Security trumps all other topics and for good reason.

But the security debate too often inoculates the political establishment against substantive examination of issues that normally bind politicians to a party and allegiances to a political ideology.  Differences between Parties become blurred by national life and death security issues.  A lack of opportunity means it is easier to leave Israel than it is to stay and neither ‘The Left’ nor ‘The Right’ has the courage to tackle this issue. I put these political terms in inverted commas because in the absence of peace, the differences between the two poles are often ill-defined. To exchange allegiances one simply relegates ideology to an indeterminate and distant future.

A democratic state exists by the principle that only it has the legal right to engage in organised violence. Only the state and its elected officials can adopt a hostile position towards a perceived enemy. When Society becomes polarised and politicians encourage violence the extremists act as proxies to the mainstream and create allegiances between the periphery and the centre. This works to undermine democracy.

Security issues help politicians such as Bibi Netanyahu to blind the people to their faults and Bibi’s biggest fault may well be that he is a fiscal conservative and a champion of the free market. He is convinced that ‘The American Way’ is right also for Israel. For a man of intelligence, his dedication to non-interference, whether it is in education or health, housing, religious affairs or energy is his greatest failure as a leader. In a country that is not America and never can be this is a failure of intellect.

Let me explain why.

The USA is a country rich in natural resources. It is 3.8 million square miles in area (9.8 million km2) and some 7% of its total area is waterways and lakes.  It has between 310 and 320 million inhabitants and is therefore a massive internal market in its own right. Israel has few natural resources. It is 8 thousand square miles in area (21 thousand km2), of which some 2% is water.  Israel has almost 8 million inhabitants. One could place some 500 States of the size of Israel into America.

Israel has a substantial minority that refuses to work (the Ultra-Orthodox), many of whom are financially supported by the State. It also has a substantial fifth column that refuses to recognise its right to exist. Israel is surrounded by enemies that are theologically hostile and intractable in denying the basic right to self-determination of any minority in their midst.

Equality is not just a basic right to life. It is also a right to live without fear of derision, ridicule or persecution. Fundamentalist Islam is predicated on discrimination as a witness to theological superiority. Israel lives in an unforgiving neighbourhood.

No other country on this Earth is denied its legitimacy or its right to self determination by a global community that creatively interprets and then writes its own imaginatively dissolute and disingenuous history of the conflict (between Israel and Palestine) based on a wholly prejudiced agenda and then demands that we trust the good intentions of that same prejudiced international community.

Israel is a country born in fear and threatened with annihilation even by those nations with which it has formally signed Treaties of Peace.

In the absence of a free market Israel has a large non-working population, the constant threat of war, and a hostile fifth column that is supported by nations that even within there own societies provide for unrelenting waves of hate against Israel and that spills over into a religiously inspired hatred of Jews in their own countries while they simultaneously demand that with undeserved faith we trust them implicitly.

So Israel is not the USA nor, can it ever be so.

All this in the absence of a free market because the economy is controlled by a few immensely wealthy families whose support for politicians of both the left and the right means they never have to say ‘sorry’ (but more about that later).

And so to return to Bibi who is not so different to any other Israeli political leaders in ignoring the issues that hurt most Israelis. He is a free market politician and that means he does not care to interfere in the ‘free’ market despite the damage it may cause to the majority of his electorate. His insularity towards those less well off than himself is supported by a belief that only those who succeed deserve his attention and the rest merit subservience.  It is as uncompromising as it is lacking in empathy but it is a basic conservative belief that is only tempered by the need to appear to be caring so that the party and therefore the leader remain electable.

The issues that have been much in the news of late are education, health and housing.

The university budget has been reducing for two decades while class sizes have been increasing at all levels of education excepting within the ultra-orthodox sector which rejects teaching the core subjects required by a modern nation but is left unsupervised.  Israel is living off the huge Russian immigration bonanza of the early 1990’s and has failed to reinforce the wealth of opportunity that came with it either culturally or educationally to create a better, more equal society. According to Professor Manuel Trachtenberg, some 25% of Israeli researchers work abroad and the average age of the faculty in Israel is 55 (compared to 43 in Britain). A ratio of 1:20 faculty to students characterizes those universities rated 50 and lower in the world. 1:10 is the ratio required to maintain the position of being in the top ten universities in the world. In Israel the ratio of faculty to students is 1:24 and it is becoming progressively worse.

In the early 1990’s there was not only more medical doctors than the State required, there was also talk (a fantasy perhaps) of constructing a medical ship manned by doctors and nurses that would sail the globe assisting countries where it was needed and offering emergency care as required. A fine ideal, it never happened. Israel squandered the opportunity to build on the talent it possessed. Instead, hospitals have reached a crisis point because its doctors work too long and compared to their European and American colleagues, are paid poorly. Some years ago in order to alleviate the worsening crisis it was mooted that Israel invest $4bil in a medical university to be located in the Galilee. Of course it also never happened. It seems that Bibi is happy as his predecessors before him to bully those who refuse to bow to government pressure not to strike while never offering a solution that provides anything  but a band-aid to a systemic problem.

Of course Israelis can take private health care, they can seek medical attention overseas but the issue is that most Israelis cannot nor should they have to contemplate either of these choices.

And housing; the struggle the young have, to try to bring down the choking prices of rent and mortgage opportunities makes Israel increasingly, a country to retire to but unaffordable for anyone else.

In Japan between the Meiji Restoration and the end of World War 2 the Zaibatsu exercised de facto control over the Japanese economy.  The Zaibatsu were large family controlled vertical monopolies. Israel has a similar network of controlling families. In competing overseas for market share there is no principled reason that they cannot continue to exist but a mechanism must be found to disempower them within the State.

Whether we learn the lessons of Japan or the ruling families of the Italian renaissance city states; both being examples of abusive economic control, ultimately, uncontrolled, unelected power destroys the society within which it moves.

Health and Education empower the people but they are expensive and a life long investment. The return on investment cannot easily be measured with comparative financial ratios nor do the rich receive an immediately quantifiable benefit.  Perhaps this is the best reason that societies fail their citizens.

A government for the people is a government by the people and not a coterie of super wealthy men and women dictating to the political leadership when to bark and when to bite and when to withdraw and when to make cosmetic concessions.  But it is the lack of an across the board, coherent political vision that squanders the human capital of the nation.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Lewis Carroll, the BBC, and the Business Secretary

On the 13th of November 2011 the BBC began its daily news roundup with a very important news story. The wife of the heir to the British throne (The Duchess of Cambridge) had been spotted wearing the same hat her mother (or sister) had recently worn.   There was no suggestion that any of the Middleton family was suffering from lice or some other socially disagreeable condition. It did however warrant five minutes in every half hour on the national news program.  OK, it was Haute couture, and some hats are more expensive than others, but please, a hat is a hat.  Was there nothing better happening in our world that this ‘national’ news item, with its subsequent analysis by a dedicated, publicly paid, BBC reporter, warranted a five minute slot in every thirty minutes on our national news? A court correspondent pointed out to every one of us that even the Royal Family were “doing their bit” during this period of national austerity (by sharing their hats).

And on the following day, the Liberal Democrat Business Secretary was heard to express the sentiment that “I feel your pain over recession”.  With the greatest of disrespect to the Honourable Mr Vince Cable, words are cheap and feelings meaningless unless they are followed through with action that ameliorates our plight. No government can ‘feel my pain or yours’.

Can you tell me when we fell down Lewis Carroll’s rabbit’s hole? Society does appear to have descended into a theatre of the absurd.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Greece and Apocalypse Now

Greece joined the Euro when it became a local currency in 2001. The immediate impact on the Greek economy according to ‘Stratfor’ (see was that the differential cost of borrowing between Germany and Greece fell by 18%, achieving parity on borrowing, between the two nations.

All nations are thankfully, not alike. It is the national character that defines a nation’s uniqueness; that enables us to celebrate diversity.

Many years ago, in response to the perception that heavy alcohol consumption was viewed as positive the Australian Government ran a nationwide advertising campaign whose intent it was to demonstrate the Neanderthal behaviour of those who drank to excess and thus, to discourage this worrying attitude. The campaign backfired. Australians are a relaxed lot, they like their leisure activities. Sans alcoholic overindulgence, it is not a fault but an enviable part of the Australian character.

To complete this comparison, America and Germany are nations for which making money is embraced with enthusiasm. At least in theory, everyone choosing to thrive has the opportunity to do so.  Their societies are driven by a work ethic that is different to that of Australia, or Greece.

The EC was created because the Americans were looking for a way to stop the European propensity for slaughtering one another and the negative impact this militant imperial provincialism had on the rest of humanity.

Greece, even with its 18% reduction in cost of borrowing can not, at this time in its history, compete with Germany. Although it has been a member of the European Community since 1981 perhaps it never will be as competitive as Germany is. Nor should it have to be. But any economic system that is not based on the ability of the participants to repay their loans within mutually acceptable periods of time is based on charity.

Charities grow for three reasons. The first is self-identification, the second legitimately occurs because of need.  Its end goal must be self-extinction or it becomes a self-perpetuating parasite, living off the living flesh of its victims.  To those people who will be offended by this analogy, some parasites exist within a symbiotic relationship with their host. Most do not.

No nation should be a charity case and those that are, are defined by their corruption, their greed and the excessive degree to which they victimise their own people.

Prime Minister George Papandreou has two choices.  He can lead Greece into default, in which case all its outstanding international loans become worthless to its owners; or it will have no choice other than acquiescence to decades of recovery.

Both Germany and France, as its two main creditors profited from their relationship with Greece. It is not the Global banking system that failed us all, this time.  If Greece does default the repercussions for Global growth will be significant.  For far too long the relentless drive to increased profitability has been achieved at the expense of society and its unrealisable expectations for unlimited Consumerism.

We may be entering a period of sustained economic stagnation.  Perhaps the volatility of markets with its cyclical boom and bust will finally be brought under unintentional control.

The greatest threat to Global stability is uncertainty. It leads to fear. Bad governments create crises to deflect criticism from them-selves. Military insecurity increases the possibility for war. Migration collapses and population transfers cease to occur except by ethnic cleansing and expulsion.  This in its turn accelerates the destabilisation of nations.  Societies are forced to cope with the finite resources at their immediate national disposal.

The clash of civilisations may be realised as isolationism, fear and extremism catapults the fundamentalists everywhere into positions that protect their own communities.

If the party is over, it is possible for a more equitable society to emerge from the debris. If nations can develop humility as a counterweight to ambition and greed it may be worth the hangover.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Musings on Peace, Israel & The Arab Spring

President Anwar Sadat told his Foreign Minister just prior to being the first Arab leader to sign a peace treaty with the Jewish state that “we are dealing with the lowest and meanest of enemies. The Jews even tormented their prophet Moses and exasperated their God.” (The Camp David Accords, a testimony. P321 Muhammad Ibrahim Kamel 1986 Quoted from “Palestine Betrayed,” Ephraim Karsh).  Whether Sadat’s assent to Jerusalem and subsequent Peace Treaty with Israel would have ultimately lead to an entirely new paradigm for Jewish-Muslim and Arab-Israeli relationships we will never know.  Because war is more than just an absence of conflict, it is a state of mind.

And it is a state of mind that Sadats’ successor, Hosni Mubarak, never intended to encourage.   When Sadat started down the road to recognition and limited reconciliation with Israel, Vice President Hosni Mubarak was against it and he never changed his mind, or his conduct.  His contemptuous behaviour provided Egyptians with a role model whose negative attributes towards Israelis as Jews would be emulated throughout Egyptian and other Muslim societies from the moment that Mubarak became Egypt’s dictator.  To believe that the Arab Spring might provide hope for a better relationship with the Arab / Islamic world is at best naive and at worse, dangerously underestimating an implacable enemy whose historic baggage of ethnic conflict and theological hate can perhaps, never be sated.

Mubarak was vice-president of Egypt when Anwar Sadat responded to Menachem Begin’s invitation to speak at the Knesset thus precipitating the peace process that culminated in Egypt regaining everything it had lost in War, through Peace. And while, since the signing of that treaty in 1979 Israel has had 32 years of ‘peace’ it has been a peace of undiminished diplomatic confrontation and hate-drenched antisemitic propaganda. Mubarak the General was the implacable enemy of Jews as religious entity and Israeli's as national polity; he opposed Sadat but accepted the peace reluctantly and without a single act of friendship at any point in the intervening years.

I would suggest that this is because Islam views its minorities as no more than a sacrifice to the Islamic extremists within its own societies.  Full peace with Israel will not be realised as long as Egyptians can take pride in the Korans’ baser statements of ridicule, its bigotry, its perception of religious superiority for the Muslim world and its racial superiority for the Arab world.

The Torah, the Jewish Bible portrays acts of violence as time specific acts of necessity or outrageous deeds that violate human decency,  bringing shame to the Jewish people (such as the rape of Dinah and her brothers subsequent revenge against the Canaanites in Genesis 34).  Modern Orthodoxy theologically and therefore theoretically rejects violence and discrimination perpetrated in the name of God by the Hebrews. Most Jews apologetically find excuses for the unpalatable because as a faith, we have always recognised that not even the Decalogue is entirely sacrosanct. The inclination towards peaceful co-existence, cultural pluralism and universal justice are cornerstones of Judaic development even if the modern ultra-Orthodox fundamentalist reaction to persecution and power has created a frightened, reactionary and backward sectarianism that the more mainstream Jewish groups are horribly reluctant to challenge, thus alienating the secular community from their faith. 

But we need each other, because humility is not a natural state of human consciousness and secular belief without a limiting deity is as dangerous a faith as any form of fundamentalism.

Christianity was foundered by men who deliberately downplayed their Jewish roots so that they could conquer Roman society for their religion.  Nevertheless, the Christian Bible is, for the most part, a testament to peace and co-existence even while its leaders exploited its texts to conquer much of the globe and to this day find it easy to make excuses for collaboration and appeasement with Islam.

Only the Muslim Bible, the Koran, seeks to dominate, to annihilate, to control by conquest.  Violence as an act of religious fulfilment; slavery as an act of demonstrable subservience, these are an Islamic patrimony that precludes equality and co-existence. It is this issue that defines the Muslim relationship with Israel and with the rest of humanity.

Turkey, Iran, Pakistan, Iraq and Egypt as religious nations are incapable of respecting the treaties they have signed with their neighbours unless they deliver their neighbours into their respective spheres of controlling influence.  Peace is not a bi-product of adherence to a literary tradition bound in antiquity that is militantly biased towards its own kind with a preoccupation towards global conquest based on a self inflated worldview of its own religious predestination towards dominance.

Israel, like all nations, is a product of settlement and immigration. But it has been a renewed magnet for religious Jews for almost a thousand years.  While secular Jews began their journey to Israel mainly after the 1880’s, many Palestinian Arabs were attracted to Israel, not by history, but by the phenomenal success of renewed Jewish immigration.  Zionism as a mainstream movement has its extremists on the periphery of society, as all societies do. But Zionists from both the left and the right did not assume a land ethnically cleansed of Arabs or non-Jews, nor did they ever expect to expel the minority from its land.  Only the Arabs did this and continue to believe that this is an option. With the active collaboration of the British Government the Arabs restricted Jewish immigration while simultaneously encouraging Arab immigration to Israel. Its leaders manipulated violent confrontation in order to profit from its chaotic blood-drenched outcome.  And all of their atrocities were committed in the name of their god Allah and their prophet, Muhammad. That the Arab nation was and still is incapable of sharing the land is obvious by Arab pronouncements.  This intolerance of diversity is intrinsic to Islam and Islamic tradition.

It is for this reason alone that any accommodation that denies the Jewish identity of Israel is no more than a cynical deconstruction of Jewish nationhood.  In Islamic terms anything else is theologically redundant; the existence of a Jewish state is the denial of Islamic theological dominance but more important, in Arab terms a renunciation of Arab imperialism. It is therefore curious that the West’s political Left has wholeheartedly embraced the Arab (Palestinian) narrative.

Jewish literary traditions are bound up in antiquity but the difference is one that separates the two religions like night and day. Islam believes its traditions are inviolate, the word of Muhammad are God’s word and therefore unchangeable.  Islam has never permitted its prophets to be anything other than God’s thugs. Judaism interpreted and reinterpreted God’s word so often that the faith of 4,000 years past was unrecognisable with that of 3,000 ago and without much similarity to the faith of 2,000 years ago and certainly nothing like it is today.  But that is what Islam sees as Judaism’s greatest failure, whereas it is what Jews see as our faiths greatest strength.

For those who would assume American support for Israel, History is not always as it seems.  In 1948 as today the US State Department was dominated by Arabists, Pro-Arab establishment bureaucrats not unlike their European or British Foreign Office equivalents.  Israel has always been an irritant that interfered with the orderly process of accommodation and appeasement with nations predisposed towards dictatorship. In 1948 President Truman recognised Israel and not because he liked his ‘Jews’ and not because he sympathised with their plight in Europe. He recognised the legitimacy of Jewish self-determination; something Britain’s University and College Union even today does not. But that was not the reason he recognised the State of Israel in the United Nations vote on the partition plan on November 30, 1947.    On that day the USA and Russia voted, for the first time on the same side because The Jewish far Left in Israel controlled 12% of the vote in Palestine and a vote against partition would undoubtedly have pushed Israel into the arms of Communism, thus providing the Soviet Union with a base in the Middle East that was both reliable as an ally and not dependent on aid to survive (as the Arab countries were.)  Out of fear for its corrupting influence on US society, in the 1950’s the US still banned much of the ‘revolutionary’ music the Jews played on their radio stations in Israel despite that decision on recognition.

Nothing is quite as it seems. In 2011 the USA installs radar systems in Turkey that face Iran but can just as easily relay information on Israel to Israel’s enemies. Satellites can be just as effective but they need to have 24/7 over-flight of a country to ensure complete cover.

On the 7th of June 1967 Defence Minister, General Moshe Dayan, made a vow in the shadow of the Wailing Wall.  “We have returned here, never to part from this city of Old Jerusalem again,” speaking calmly as he addressed his battle weary troops, many of them sobbing with emotion, General Dayan added: “to our Arab neighbours we offer even now our hand in peace….we did not come here to Jerusalem to conquer the religious shrines of others or to interfere with those of other faiths, but to ensure peace and to live in fraternity with others.”   (Quoted from Press Cuttings of June 8, 1967).

Today, imagination is sadly lacking in Israeli political circles on how to engage its enemies on its own terms. Perhaps Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has less time than he thinks.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Gilad Shalit to be released from captivity

The whole nation welcomes home Gilad Shalit. Or it should. But there are prominent Israelis who have argued against the price to be paid for his return to Israel.  The price for swapping him is 1 Israeli for 1,027 Palestinians. People are right; it is an exorbitant price beyond all acceptable standards. And yes, there is a probable price yet to be paid in Israeli lives lost.  And it even sends a message to the Islamic world. After all, the morally corrupt President of Iran, Mahmoud Achmadinejad has unambiguously stated that Islam must defeat the corrupt West because “We (the Islamic world) love death and the West loves Life.”

In the Yom Kippur service there is a passage that refers to Pidyon Shevuyim (redeeming the captives). Islam theologically views the non Muslim as no better than cattle, to be bartered, stolen, abused and despatched to his or her death when no longer of service. As such, Islam is the true spiritual heir to the Roman Empire whose civilisation likewise produced great works of art and literature and, defined statecraft and ethics as the celebration of power and death, imaginatively delivered to lesser beings.

The one thing that has differentiated both the USA and Israel in their statecraft from the rest is the tension between foreign policy pragmatists (realists) and foreign policy idealists.  It is why the home of Capitalism boycotts its enemies and why the most significant opposition to war has always come from within our two societies not outside of them.   It is why Israel’s enemies fired almost 10,000 rockets and missiles at Israel’s citizens; nevertheless Israel permitted its enemies to escape with their families in the assault on Gaza that began on December 27, 2008.   And Israel has the most diligent military prosecution service in the Western world, to ensure that those forgetting the ‘rules of war’ do not escape scrutiny from an Israeli court.

It may not be much but it is what differentiates ‘us’ from ‘them’.

On November 30, 1947 the Arab Higher Committee issued its manifesto to rouse the population to a higher plane of consciousness – it wanted the Palestinian Arab populace to be prepared for the conflict with the Jews. It was titled “Kingdoms are established over dead bodies and skulls.” Rousing stuff.

In a not dissimilar vein, Neturei Karta, the fundamentalist Jewish worlds very own Jew haters may be correct about one thing only and that is that a people with a state will compromise on following God’s commandments.  They bleat that only a God created state is permissible therefore they ignore the state and often actively work to undermine it.  Their ethics are without Jewish foundation. In order to survive,a state will inevitably make compromises and God is in the struggle, not in full time study and disengagement from the life of the nation.

Those who would abandon a captive to his or her fate betray Jewish values.  That a senior Israeli Rabbi could publicly suggest this, is an indication of moral degeneration, not of piety.

Israel must not forget that the ethical foundation of the state of Israel is not Turkish, nor Arab, nor British; it is Jewish, and it is Israeli.  Ethnic cleansing is symbolic of Islam’s foundation mythology.  Pidyon Shevuyim is symbolic of Israel's founding ethic. Some of us appear to have forgotten that.

Pirkei Avot 2.6 (Hillel) "In a place where no one behaves like a human being, you must strive to be human.”

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Ethics and Slavery

Ethics: defined as a system of moral principles and not that different to ‘morality’ which is, in essence, ‘appropriate conduct.’  It is talked at us by self-righteous moralists to berate as opposed to educate, and given to us as an instruction rather than as a choice. This is fascism mixed with a dollop of McCarthyism just for good measure and just in case we think too much.

The world is divided into the West and the rest. Saudi Arabia abolished slavery in 1962 but it needed further legislation in 1990 to reinforce the original law and the reality is that slavery remains celebrated in Saudi Arabia and the rest of the Arab world.  No one should believe, almost 1,400 years after the death of the founder of the Islamic faith that this is a religion of universal peace, justice and mercy; 1,400 years after the death of Muhammad, slavery exists and its greatest supporters remain the Islamic, Arab world.

And the West keeps silent because the West / Rest dichotomy renders the slavery issue an inconvenient distraction and in any case if the focus is turned on them they can always blame it on the Jews or the Zionists.  We engage in dialogue with Islamic fundamentalists whose faith demands we return to inferior status, to a position little better than slavery and to institutionalised, contractually ‘bound’ (dhimmi) inferiority with our rights not even guaranteed if we return to medieval subservience.  And then we have British institutions such as the NUS (national union of students) decreeing that Jews, uniquely, have no rights to self-determination.

In 2007 Slavery was abolished for the fifth (?) time in the Islamic republic of Mauritania (up to 20% of the population are believed to be slaves).

Slavery is subjugation and exploitation and so is prostitution, child labour and female inequality; in Islam it is personified by the burqa covering the female body from head to foot to conceal the shame of their sex. All of these elements are culturally self-inflicted and justified by the benefit of a theologically mandated psychosis which outwardly perceives human beings as being created for the purpose of serving a genocidal God superior to all others (Allah).

In the West we say little or nothing because we fear the accusation of ethnic particularism. France outlawed the veil (niqab) and the burka while we in Britain proudly boast that our freedom is greater than theirs, when in fact it is no more than intellectual cowardice that we celebrate. The undercurrent of violence we too, celebrate.  The ethical should be universal which is why we no longer rejoice in torture as a means of punishing the offender in society.  But we have a moral blindness when it comes to Islam.

Hegel’s idea of morality was the state based on public morality. But if the state is informed by society then who leads in formulating this standard?  During the Inquisition it was the clergy; in Arab society the Imam is often the most racist of the pack of human hyena, using their religious literary patrimony to espouse every evil known to society. A defective psyche does not sadly, preclude flamboyance or charisma. Hatred and violence are intoxicating emotions that are not so difficult to harness; ambition and greed make the rhetoric of demonisation a cheap substitute for compassion, and far more seductive. The language of violence creates its own momentum. The veneer of civilised discourse can easily be erased or with a specific target, create a false narrative. Piety is no guarantee of sobriety. Power is conditional respect which in reality, is not respect but leveraged fear.

To radicalize the youth, create dissent, demand sedition or separation (apartheid), to intimidate secular society through the riots and then bring in the radicals to placate those same rioters, is clever.  It is also what fascism used to bring about the overthrow of the nascent democracy in Russian in 1917 and in Germany in 1933. The emerging mainstream Islamist groups in the so called ‘Arab Spring’ seek ‘respectability’ then power. They censor debate as they did in Iran then they ride to power with the support of their dupes. In Iran it was the Mujahedin (Left wing) and the Tudeh (Communist) alliance.  Here it is the committed Left and their liberal allies. Like Nazism they use a combination of populism and the threat of violence. The Salafi movement of puritanical Islamic zealots are often seen to be synonymous with Wahhabi Islam – the ultra orthodox faction that has ruled Saudi Arabia for two centuries. It is they that are blamed for the murder of Copts and the burning of churches in Egypt. But they are no different to any of the Islamic fundamentalists from Djakarta to Karachi and from Amman to Teheran in their extreme intolerance of difference and their hatred for democracy.  If they account for 5% of the voting public in Egypt, it is best we remember that 10% is regarded as ‘critical mass’ for any movement that wishes to become a serious contender for political power.

In the Babylonian Talmud there is an expression: “The ‘tripartite tongue’ slayeth three parties: It slayeth the speaker, and he that heareth what is said, as well as he that is being spoken about” (Arakhin 15b) - my apologies I cannot find from where I read this. In fact the violence of language has ruled men’s hearts for all of our thinking history and while it is true that it poisons the ‘soul’ it’s impact is usually intended to be much more localised. It is only the person of whom the slander is spoken that damage is intended. Friedrich Nietzsche wrote, “It is easier to live with the no-truth or half-truth, but it is tedious to live with the whole truth.”  Can there be Peace with Islam while their world knows only propaganda, lies and demi-lies?

Our ongoing sanitization of the Arab world is not morally justified nor may we hope for securing a stable future if we acquiesce to it. It is an ethical failure that afflicts all our Societies and it is an issue that will need to be ventilated if we are to survive.  The problem is that in so doing we expose the bankruptcy of Muslim regimes not just in the Arab world but across the globe.

I would suggest it is this ethical betrayal that is at the heart of our inexplicable and wretched obsession with Israel and global ambivalence to Jewish self-rule.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Ethnocentricity and the BBC

Ethnocentricity is a word I first heard in The States in the early 1980’s. It means the tendency to view other cultures through a narrow majority perspective. This was usually accompanied by a sincerely felt shame that our hero or heroine expressed for an insufficient display of obeisance or humility before the cultural attributes or behaviours of the minority.  Inevitably it led to demands for the provision of superior rights to the minority as indicative of sincerity by the majority. Examples of this abound at the BBC. Rageh Omaar’s four-part biopic of the Life of Mohammed asked only two serious questions and glossed over the consequences for human history in his reply to both of those questions. Shappi Khorsandi is a Persian Comedienne who presented a documentary on the contribution of foreign food to Britain last week. What she basically stated was that all Asian / Near-Eastern food is Islamic.  Once again the BBC gave a proponent of Muslim cultural colonialism a platform for propaganda that essentially denied the contribution of any one else to the British way of life.

Claudia Roden was interviewed selectively to support this position which is interesting because the history of British cookery writing can be reductively divided between the contribution by British Cookery writers beginning in the early 1940’s with rationing and the foreign born cookery writers who teased Britain out of its provincial culinary mind set in the 1960’s. The two writers most responsible for the latter were Madhur Jaffrey, an Indian actress and Hindu food writer who introduced the Western world to the diverse cuisines of India (and she, unlike the Muslim, Shappi, credits everyone) and similarly, the Jewish Claudia Roden, born in Egypt and best known as the author of ‘Middle Eastern’ cookbooks who again never attempted to compartmentalise cookery as the inheritance of any one people.

How interesting that the BBC could so shamelessly broadcast a solid sixty minutes of documentary propaganda which was clearly an outrageous, prejudiced attempt to define Britain’s acceptance of diverse culinary traditions as solely Islamic.  The stated conclusion was that the weakening of ethnocentricity in Britain is part of the Muslim inheritance that defines its universal contribution to society.

This programme was no less than cultural rape.

The BBC should be ashamed, but it won’t be. I am sure it is patting itself on the back for yet one more obsequious and toadying biopic of historical revisionism.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Capitalism, Socialism & Norway

Any form of extremism is wrong because it creates a state of expectation that can only be realised at someone else’s expense. Extreme atheism on the one side and extreme religion on the other compel the believer to deny the legitimate aspirations of the non-believer. They share a common dysfunction of intolerance.

As pure philosophies, Capitalism and Socialism are the two sides of the same coin; without compassion or respect for the society without which they would not exist.  Capitalism celebrates individual achievement at the expense of the collective; socialism celebrates the collective at the expense of the individual. Both deny us our humanity as they pursue their ends. Capitalism and socialism are self-justifying.  They are reliant on conspiracy and adversity to flourish; both have annihilated the other in the pursuit of power.  They fail to recognise that morality is the public expression of a personal if imperfect belief.

When I look at the collective I see a vision of the master race without a fixed point on the compass – neither left nor right. The masses as automatons, religious & secular fundamentalists wedded to a cause without thought and devoid of empathy.  And as clarity is their greatest strength, it is a paradox that it is also their greatest weakness because they cannot envision compromise.  If society cannot function efficiently without consensus, conflict ultimately debilitates society.

We have prostituted secular culture to the false deity of self abnegation, the indifference to complexity mistaken for diversity but which has created a spiritually impoverished society desperate for the tangible as if a mixture of material delights and sensory experiences negates the need to confront the ethical contradictions in our society. This destitution of the spirit is a product of modern societies desperate for stimulation and possession. The demand for instant gratification and acknowledgement of self worth has left us impatient, dissatisfied and frightened. Instead of creative dissonance we have chaos and fear. 

A return to less complicated simpler times is no more than an illusion for most people because those simpler times, if they did ever exist were times of terror and poverty, without hope and too often with even less purpose. Humanity has lived through centuries of extremism and we have hundreds of millions of human corpses to testify to our failure of compassionate insight.

The capitalist who demands ever greater returns on investment, inbuilt obsolescence that artificially inflates demand and creates privation; the socialist celebrating the social parasite and excusing evil, selectively, to salve his conscience for his intellectual indigence. The Norwegian model with its intellectual Quislings and its celebration of mediocrity is fuelled by hate to keep boredom at bay. The particularity of the individual expressed within the collective is masked as universal values; its facile universalism concealing a particular prejudice.  Without its wealth the Scandinavian nation would be exposed in all of its hypocrisy.

What do I want? Full employment and work for all those who want it. We could begin with a simplified education system that takes the educationally unsuited out of the school yard and into apprenticeship from the start of the teenage years.  A designated non taxable category of industrial non-competitive advantage which recognises that not everyone can be an office worker or an engineer, a scientist or a doctor but that everyone has the right to work even if the same job can be done at a fifth of the cost in a distant country.   Efficiency is not at issue. But in seeking to drive down costs we have sacrificed the labour force to fear and despair; greed and inhumanity.

The social contract, or a version of it states simply that no one is left behind; the state protects the vulnerable and provides an opportunity to everyone seeking it.   The consideration for this contract is that we agree to abide by the rules that govern society. We accept obligations that protect both ourselves and others.  We renounce a degree of freedom for the common good.  The social contract is disintegrating because it is ill-defined and lop sided.   The assumption that responsibility is defined by legality rather than morality has left society without a vision of itself. When a child has money to buy £70 - £100 Nike's but no money for the books he or she needs for his or her education they are simply aping the most visible attributes of our celebrity society.  The solution is to lower our expectations from top to bottom. And that means a return to a more civil society, a more reliable and less materialistic one where we equally respect each others differences and renounce the language of superiority and hate; where expectation is the mother of invention and not the father of fear.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Civil Disorder in England

The riots that tore through England burning down whole blocks of buildings, threatening the lives of its occupants and murdering innocent bystanders came as a shock to social commentators and the chattering classes alike.  Criminal gangs exploited this violence for their own ends – a brilliant move by them.  Why were we surprised?

At the end of the World War II people talked of a new beginning where wealth would cease to be an important predicator of social mobility.  Class would stop positioning people in stratified layers that defined them.  But in the last half century the opposite has been the case.  Income inequality has worsened. The traditional measure of income inequality in society is called the Gini Coefficient (after Corrado Gini, an Italian Statistician who invented the measure in 1912).  While success is the measure of ambition and translates into reward, the theory does not take into account the widening disparity between separate groups based on sex, education, race and other criteria relating to society.  The gap between rich and poor has continued to expand as the lingering perception of what is possible has simultaneously, in our materialistic society, psychically expanded as it has physically receded.

A liberal will see the merits of income equality but put freedom first. But the ultimate test of a person’s personal morality is their pursuit of life’s goals without violating the freedom of others.  A meritocracy without equal opportunity is not a meritocracy but the continuance of Class advantage. Former World Bank chief economist Joseph Stiglitz noted that “markets do not lead to efficient outcomes, let alone outcomes that comport with social justice” but like all things it is because markets are of human design they take on the greed or altruism of the society in which they operate.  And Social Democracy has become inseparable from materialism and the Markets.

Competition can be rationalised and socially engineered to the point of delusion.  Competition without control and ethical guidelines is subject to a free market of ideas that can lead to totalitarianism.  No market can be truly free because absolute freedom becomes the antithesis of respect.

It would be a neat generalisation to condemn News Corp for the climate of aggressive individuality that created the News of the World scandal. The outraged cries for justice fuelled by a lynch mob mentality neatly disguised the partisan commercial considerations that accompanied the toppling of the news print behemoth.  Realistically News Corp is the fall guy that ultimately facilitated a bloodless coup by the BBC.  It allows global and hegemonic conglomerates such as the BBC to exercise control over news and entertainment. I find this even more frightening than mercantile exploitation by Rupert Murdoch’s capitalist empire. The BBC has the political ‘faith’ and unrestricted global power without even the limitations of commerce to restrain it. It is hardwired into the British establishment, into her government, her Foreign office and into the system of Royal patronage.  It is the propaganda arm of the British Treasury.

As I wrote in an earlier blog (“News of the World - a Peculiarly British Conspiracy”): “An unregulated press has dominated our lives and informed our intelligence since the dawn of the electronic age.  The internet and mobile phones have made the dissemination of information ubiquitous as it has prostituted knowledge to fashion and convenience, gratuitously bestowing sanitised nonsense on the believer.”   After the civil disorder in England much has been spoken about respect.  Respect is an idea, not just a word. Our respect is conditional on what we may gain from it.  And because immediacy of gratification is an affliction of our age we have little or no time for respecting that which does not bring an obvious or instant return.

The principle that legitimised intrusion into the private lives of individuals remains wholly supported across the media which in the electronic age has failed to address the issue of responsibility as it has enjoyed unprecedented power to influence society. The ends justifying the means precludes respecting the Individual and the Group.

There are those now arguing for national service as a sop to solving Britain’s social problems.  But in societies that need it, it is argued that the Army can never replace the social worker and those that committed much of the violence are likely to be excluded from national service.  So this is not the answer.

Respect is a contract that defines us at every level of our society but we as a society do not appreciate that it is intrinsic to every thing we do as individuals and as a group.  John McEnroe screaming at the umpire or the UK Guardian Newspaper columnist on a recent TV program constantly interrupting the other speakers are both of them equally guilty in instructing our bad behaviour.  The corrupt politician and the rap artist swearing are both delivering the same message that what is acceptable is defined by the individual and not by rules of behaviour; not by what society calls ‘ethics’.

Calling for a national commission of enquiry is also without purpose because it will be political and therefore unable to look at what society is, let alone what ails it.  Brutality has always been a hallmark of human society, it is not imagination or more money that we need. Until we recognise that it is society that is at fault at every level, we cannot expect respect to be a solution. Perhaps then, we are returning to darker times where respect is fear and control is the Establishment pulling our strings as perhaps it always has.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

The USA & China

"If the USA, Europe and other advanced economies fail to shoulder their responsibility and continue their incessant messing around over selfish interests, this will impede stable development of the global economy," the People's Daily, the official Communist party newspaper, warned in a commentary.  This was reported in The Guardian Newspaper today, the 9th of August 2011.

Triumphalism is perhaps the greatest impediment to any nation’s vigor and it is not restricted to superpower states which just fail with greater consequences for the world order. China should lecture the USA less in case its calls for greater responsibility are heeded.

Historically China has been better at exploiting the West than the West has been at exploiting China.  The Opium Wars of the 19th Century were an early attempt at regaining the financial initiative from China.

Unlike China, America does not need greater domestic spending. However the USA does have some 200 foreign bases that it pays for – some, like the Philippines, cost billions of dollars every year to maintain them and even more billions of dollars in rent that is paid into The Philippines government coffers.  It is the calculation that Israel’s critics never fail to forget to make when criticizing the State of Israel for the aid as opposed to the loans that it receives but must spend in the USA.

If the USA withdrew from some of its foreign bases the benefit to its economy would be not insignificant while the commensurate loss to many of those nations would be potentially catastrophic for their local economies.  China has the current cash reserves to step in and the Arab world may exploit its oil revenues for interference but superpower commitment has its price and it is rarely in virtue paid and even more rarely in gratitude repaid.

The USA could begin by encouraging investment in its own economy and not just in infrastructure but crucially in jobs. Every job gained will be a job that China will almost certainly lose and that $3.2 trillion dollars worth of foreign reserves China currently holds may finally begin to be depleted.

The solution is simple. Bring the jobs home and eliminate the tax on companies that do this.  The saving in unemployment benefits alone will more than make up for the loss of taxation income to the government and the social benefit will be qualitatively measurable.

America must look inward to salvation not just ethically but economically. The era of massive profits and obscene wages have fueled false hopes and illogical expectations for almost perpetual growth. Fiscal responsibility in government means managing the public and that in turn means the perception within society at the top has to change. Modesty does not mean that we cannot strive or seek to excel above all others. But while a caring society cannot justify the pain it causes to others the demonstration of this care begins, like charity, at home.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Ego Empathy and Individuality

Without the twentieth century movement towards individualism the women’s liberation movement would have stalled at the first barrier. It freed the feminine ego to contemplate limitless possibilities for self-fulfilment.  And it encouraged the other sex to exert a similarly assertive response to the multiple layers of authority that had discouraged public expressions of self-assertion in the pre-‘post modern’ era. Society has admired individual exemplars but even today, it despises, because it fears, the individual as a concept, that is to say, someone who stands apart from the group.

All individualism is, to an extent, a renunciation of the community because it asserts the pre-eminence of the individual over the community.  One may argue that altruism exists to bind individuals as a community but in as much as altruism fulfils a need within the self can it truly exist separately from the ego?  And if all things spring from the ego, how can individuality and altruism co-exist as anything but a transient connection?

A society with its adult males pursuing a course of individual attainment may have survived because only a few individuals ever distanced themselves from the group but they nearly always remained within the community. However a society in which both sexes reject the cohesion of the group damages the community and must test its sustainability. 

Individuality and ego are entangled. Political and religious extremism are no more than the expression of an uninhibited ego. As such the difference, if it exists, between them and pornography is that the latter is usually private while the former is not.

And this leads us onto ‘respect’ because if respect is not mutual it is a deceit. And individualism at its most nihilistic is the antithesis of respect.   This is where society has failed.  Today we are all of us witness to a society that has no respect for the individual and only conditional respect for the group.  We are spectators to the debilitation of the modern community; or worse, its replacement by ethnic based communalism.

In usurping the role of the community in pursuit of the egotists’ agenda, journalism has succeeded in trivialising debate and marginalising the community.  As a profession it is complicit in returning us to medieval ignorance.

Jeremy Rifkin says that we are soft wired to experience the plight of another person as if we experienced it ourselves; that selfhood goes with empathetic development. There is a line we cross in the pursuit of individual attainment where we lose our empathy for the individual and replace it with a group consciousness.

During the American Civil War it was said that The South loved ‘Black’ people as individuals and hated them as a group while The North loved them as a group but hated them as individuals.  Perhaps the essence of being human is that we are only capable of seeing the other as an individual and that when we attain a group consciousness we immediately compartmentalise those who are not like us into neat stereotypical blocks. As a species we appear to be incapable of transcending our need for labels.  In a competitive world this is religions greatest failure because empathy, predicated on faith, is tribal. We have not evolved to the degree we assumed.  Simon Greer wrote in the Washington Post that we are at our best as a society when we put humankind and the common good first. But it is how we interpret the ‘Common good’ and ‘benefit’ that counts.   And past history teaches us that in most cases, even when we transcend our tribalism, ego trumps empathy.

How all that I have referred to previously matters is that it would be truly naive to believe even for a moment that what happened at the News of the World (NotW) was a peculiarity of News Corp.  Phone Tapping and hacking into the mobile phones of innocent people was not a single news corporations’ aberrant behaviour.  The principle that still legitimises intrusion and snooping to uncover non-conformism or illegality remains wholly supported across the media.  Ethically this is wrong.  And while it would be irrelevant to ascribe revenge against feminism as a motive for bringing Rebekah Brooks to account, the pack mentality has been very selective in targeting News Corp.  Ed Miliband demanded the break up of Saint Rupert’s media empire without any mention of the BBC or any other global hegemon.

This pack mentality legitimises disrespect for the individual as well as the group. It is the Media's legacy and has been concealed from us in any discussion of the nature of the present threat to our freedom.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

News of the World – A Peculiarly British Conspiracy?

Go back five years to 2006 and we are told that the police already knew about the phone tapping and not just by a tabloid newspaper which hacked into the mobile phones of celebrities and ordinary folk alike.  We now know that 31 newspapers and 305 journalists were engaged in hacking into private phones. Or so the former Information Commissioner stated when as the scandal broke he was interviewed by the BBC. We learned that competition for the next story had become so fierce; it precipitated violence between journalists from rival newspapers.

So first let us kill a cherished fantasy. Journalism is not about press freedom, it is about fashion, propaganda and prejudice in the pursuit of uniformity and acquiescence.  And it is not a guardian of democracy but rather, its government sanctioned Rottweiler. A ‘Free Press’ to be successful has to be popular.  That should be axiomatic – gone are the days that an elite few wrote for the elite few.  Recognition is as important as truth for without it the ‘truth’ may as well be a lie.  Recognition is legitimacy.  Therefore, to be popular the media must be commercially successful. And newspapers do have massive influence on the way we think and therefore, on the way we behave. We know more about the lives of celebrities and fictitious characters from soap operas than we do about our own neighbours who may be living lives of isolation and poverty. Ethically the media has much to answer for. 

But it is we who choose to read the garbage that is out there and that includes the intellectual sophistry that does our thinking for us.  If people have no shame it is because we find it convenient to not think too much.

On Saturday the 9th of July 2011, the front cover of Britain’s right-of-centre and editorially conservative Spectator stated “They all did it” while the Left-wing Guardian Newspaper elided the obvious by screaming from its front page that Murdoch HQ had destroyed the evidence of its perfidious activities.  So is the News of the World a peculiarly British conspiracy?

An unregulated press has dominated our lives and informed our intelligence since the dawn of the electronic age.  The Internet and mobile phones have made the dissemination of information ubiquitous as it has prostituted knowledge to fashion and convenience, gratuitously bestowing sanitised nonsense on the believer.

We knew that our lives were an open book but for as long as it was our idols whose follies were being publicly exposed, the extensive phone tapping and hacking of mobile phones did not touch on our sensitive psyches. As if we were immune to its corruption. The BBC prognosis is that we are frightened of monopolistic power, that the concentration of too much power in a single news corporation is unwise and undemocratic.  But the BBC is a global powerhouse; it has monopolistic power and almost unlimited resources.  Its recently appointed Chairman, (Baron) Chris Patten is a noted Arabist as well as a former chairman of both the Conservative Party and Medical Aid for Palestine. Of course the response that the BBC is regulated is farcical. The BBC is its own policeman and slavishly follows British Foreign Office policy both in patriotic spirit as well as in its prejudices.  It is a convenient vehicle for controlling society because it is paid with a government mandated Poll Tax; by definition it forces poverty stricken British subjects as well as Her Majesty and the other members of British Royalty to pay exactly the same licence fee. The rat infested hovel and Buckingham palace, with its Rembrandt's and its Jewel encrusted gold baubles, pay equally, for the honour of funding the largest and most wealthy publicly supported news conglomerate on the planet.

The Press Complaints Commission is of course stacked with members of the media and as such has little enthusiasm for ethics, for statutory guidelines or for principled behaviour.  Media plurality means that diversity is permitted but within limits.  McCarthyism informs British society and keeps debate within prescribed limits of acceptability.   A belief that Press self-regulation is workable is not so naive as it is convenient.  Ed Miliband, leader of the Opposition Labour Party, asked what happened to morality in parts of the newspaper industry? But it was Television that gave us Big Brother and it was Television that set itself up as moral arbiter of British as well as Global Society. British television justifies British prejudices rather than dispassionately reporting events.

And while the BBC participated in this populist dance on the grave of what is described as a British institution (the News of the World that is) the reality is that instead of admitting we are all responsible for the situation that permitted the press to be above the law it actively participated in holding the old man down so that he drowned all the more quickly.

People are incentivised by cash. It used to be glory, except that glory does not pay bills.  The BBC’s unlimited access to cash facilitated the debasement of the industry and its sensationalisation of Sports Reporting created this monster by educating both player and spectator as to what could be gained by notoriety and misbehaviour.

The timing of the allegations cannot be coincidental. The final stages of Rupert Murdoch’s acquisition of BSkyB were just a few weeks away.

Control of BSkyB was the jewel in the crown that Murdoch planned for his media empire. He should be satisfied that his empire, at least in the UK, has been rejected but that he still, at least for now, lives. The last foreigner to attempt to hold onto a British newspaper was Conrad Black and he now sits in jail while the media mogul before him was murdered, allegedly by Arab Agents trained by MI6.  One could argue that Murdoch’s assumed demise marks the end of the era of the media mogul, the media autocracy replaced by the electronic media.  But who controls iPlayer in the UK? The BBC of course. The paper based Press is gradually being replaced by its internet partners.  The global names and the minor titles are to be found on the internet; that they are now moving onto a model of paid internet subscriptions is inevitable.  The internet era will eventually make the printed (news) media redundant.

I-Player permits an Orwellian future to be more tightly supervised by our political masters and their acolyte’s in the so called ‘Quality Press’. What scares me most is not the gutter press and its diet of boobs and sport, titillating gossip and frivolous inanity but the purpose driven ‘Quality Press’ with its middle class morality and stereotyped (and therefore acceptable) prejudices, its agenda driven proprietors carefully compliant and subtly sycophantic.

The crucifixion of Saint Rupert of Murdoch is a lesson for those who want to invest in British industry. That they were all of them “doing it” was unimportant.  History has demonstrated that it was who they were that counted.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The Promise - A Conclusion

The Promise was a four part mini-drama produced by British TV that purported to provide an historic narrative of the conflict between Israel and Arab.  Directed by Peter Kosminsky, it has been the subject of many articles in the British press, particularly the Jewish press.  It is the Palestinian Exodus except without the grace and honesty of Exodus. The one true similarity is that it loosely interprets the narrative of conflict. Where it differs however is that while Exodus evades some difficult issues, The Promise in its pretentious, and dualist propaganda entirely rewrites the history of the conflict in a way that it is intended will demonise all of the Jewish protagonists and by association, all Jewish Israelis. Presenting the story from one side only ‘The Promise’ is no more than a deceitful, dishonest polemic which contemptuously disregards all journalistic standards of probity. 

This mini-series is for the Arab World and the Fascist LibLeft (Liberals and the Left) coalition, which sadly today encompasses most of British Journalism, a call to arms and a justification for bigotry, prejudice and McCarthyist terror.  These allies, devoid of an ethical compass have been rewriting the Near Eastern narrative to suit their own prejudices and economic sub-texts.  For far too long they have been creating history in their own grotesque image, and without fear of consequence.

The logic of Islamic and in particular Arab hatred is that ethnic or religious equality refutes their ideological base.  The LibLeft coalition anticipates a Zionist surrender to the greater Arab nation. It is this crime against humanity that drives the Western elite’s ideological purpose. Without its Antizionism it is bereft of any meaningful ideological content around which it can successfully rally.

To quote Sever Plocker of the Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronot (29th March 2011) “The left, even the radical left, is supposed to support unflinchingly the most fundamental human aspiration for liberty without asking who stands to profit from it.”  But Liberty cannot stand without democracy.  And the problem? The left has never supported liberty as a universal principle.  It has always supported repressive regimes. 

And Israel is allegedly born in original sin because it is Jewish and therefore irredeemably middle class (at least according to left wing class theory). The ethical issue that the LibLeft coalition can never reconcile is that Third World imperialism is worse than anything America or its allies can deliver. Some of those Third World countries are leaders in global drug trafficking, prostitution and slavery. And some of those countries have more wealth than most prosperous nations in the Western world but contribute nothing to it, save the dissension they sow and the chaos they celebrate.

Why do so many states within Christendom embrace the Arab and the Islamic narrative? It is partly because Israel has lost the narrative debate about its legitimacy. For more on this see my recent thoughts from 22nd of May 2011 and titled “Hasbara & Israel's Original Sin”. 

There is no payback to supporting an ethical stance if history is no more than the creative output of the powerful and an instrument of subjugation for the weak.

How can it be that history is so openly disrespected? To not place too fine a distinction on the event and its aftermath, history, is an event in past tense. Humanity has justified far greater crimes than the simple act of reshaping history to fit into our own perspective or rewriting a story to fit our own stereotyped image of what ‘the other’ should be. And international finance is far more important than truth and justice.  International relations should be based on ethics but they are not and this is also the problem because without consensus the greedy and corrupt will exploit an ‘altruistic’ response for their own benefit. Witness Switzerland, arguable the most ethically damaged European nation since Hitler came to power in 1933.

The Left has bought into the hegemonic demand for Islamic exclusivity. The Jewish people, their history and their narrative have been refused a place in the market.

The Promise represents one more assault on Israel and Jews by Britain’s hegemonic fascist press. The directors’ responsibility to provide an historic framework has been ignored.  British journalism is not about ethics but about viewer numbers and complex narratives do not win awards.  It is all about time and profits. Cant is the journalist’s bible.

Kosminski is a propagandist, an entertainer, a minstrel; he is no more than that.  Acknowledgement of his talent is its own reward and encouragement for further lies and deceit.  He said that perhaps one day he would write a program, not a mini-series, about Hamas. I can just imagine it.  Human beings will be shown decorously throwing themselves off the top of apartment buildings; Christians will joyously slit their own throats while women, ‘inappropriately’ attired, will exuberantly splash themselves with acid in expiation of their ‘sluttish’ attire.  Of one thing we can be sure. There will be no difficult questions and no uncomfortable silences to inconvenience the television cameras and al jazeera’s viewers.

The truth is irrelevant. Kosminski would have been equally comfortable writing for other more notorious journals of past history. Talent is no predicator of ethics.  In our dying world it is all about fame.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Deligitimization & McCarthyism

In spite of Judaism’s rich literary tradition there has been no effective response to ongoing attempts to delegitimize the State of Israel either from Israel or from Israel’s defenders.

On the States’ side perhaps this is because intervention requires an infusion of resources into Israel’s foreign policy community and Israel’s laissez faire obsession with almost everything leaves it incapable of delivering such consistent forward planning as would be required to tackle a relentless wave of disinformation and lies.  The present administration (and not just the present one) is divided by politics and by corrupt family ties that award key posts to partisans without knowledge or commitment.  This has created a class of civil servants unable to focus on any community but their own and unable to argue for Israel’s inalienable rights.  Jews have suffered persecution for their faith for at least a millennia and a half.  As a consequence many find it easier to adopt the narrative of their enemies in order to assimilate into society, even when it means prostituting all ethical standards save the ones that highlights their opposition to their former community.  These are the Jewish Uncle Toms, the House Jews.

Intermittent acts of ethnic cleansing interspersed by waves of violence, forced conversion, expulsion and mass murder are real events and we sanitise their impact by our use of words. Pogrom and genocide have no impact for anyone but the generation that follows the act and perhaps the unbiased but not too clinically remote scholar of history. How many of us remember the horror of Rwanda and Cambodia? And who cared, who cares, for the ethnic rape, pogroms and genocide being committed by Arab racists against the black nation of the Sudan?

The anti-war movement in the UK refused to condemn Mugabe’s regime because that would have been politically incorrect. It would have created problems for the coalition of extremists within the umbrella ‘Peace’ organisation.  The USA has always been the enemy for a majority within the Left and unsurprisingly, it created no issue at all to align Liberals and their Left wing allies with Islamic organisations so tainted by opposition to every principle of Western Society that the stench of their violent hatred must transfer across.  Any nation aligned with America is viewed as irredeemably damaged.

Colonel Qaddafi bombed his own citizens but then Libya was never an American Lackey.  Assad murdered up to 40,000 of his own people but Syria’s Assad was, like Iraq’s Hussein, an internationalist, a pan-Arab leader, a brother in arms. Robert Fisk – the left wing Antisemite joyously reported the decapitation of Israeli soldiers and the subsequent Arab game of ‘head’ football for the BBC some years ago (he reported on it from Lebanon). He has asked in one of his articles for the British ‘Independent’ Newspaper why Libya was an acceptable target for Western bombs while Israel is not. He said that Israel’s ‘crimes’ were no less serious. But then Fisk is an Arabist and while he is a dab hand at sophistry his tolerance for Jews has never included assigning to them equal rights to nationhood or protection from discrimination or persecution. But he writes well. And he blames American imperialism for protecting Israel. No word of course on Koranic incitement or the racist philosophy of Hezbollah or Hamas, seen as flag bearers for the anti Zionist front.

Fisk, like his LibLeft buddies prefers not to dwell on the past. And like far too many of his fascist friends assumes that Jews turning the other cheek as they have done through millennia of persecution will prevent the revenge filled mob from committing genocide.  And if he is wrong, who cares? The sacrifice of a few million Jews is an acceptable price to pay because LibLeft idealists, like their protean political forebears rarely have to make a personal sacrifice for their ideological folly.  This is the greatest crime of the LibLeft coalition. It has always and will continue to deny the equality and freedom from repression that has at all times been the goal for the Near-East’s Jews.

Similarly, the UN peace keeping force made up solely of African troops is funded to the tune of $1.8bn per annum.  Think about that number – that is one thousand eight hundred million dollars every year. To the black ethnic minority of the Sudan not a penny, cent, euro or a renminbi of those massive funds have been contributed towards the alleviation of their suffering.  The troops of the African Union Peace keeping force have enjoyed the experience of gang raping the refugees but done nothing to ameliorate the awful conditions for the Sudanese minority they were sent to protect. What the AU earned from Western nations allowed ‘the West’ to wash its collective hands of confrontation with an Islamic, Arab aggressor.

The UN throughout its history has provided employment for ambitious politicians and technocrats who have not contributed to the planet and its inhabitants a single altruistic benefit for the annual $40 billion budget they squander on scoring points and political posturing.  If they feed the victims of civil war with Western donations it is so the victims can patiently await their slaughter while we are protected from the vision. It is a cruel irony that hints at the true nature of international cooperation.  There is one organisation within the UN worth saving and that is the World Food Programme without which many hundreds of thousands if not millions of Sudanese would have died.  However, it has saved the people of Darfur (as elsewhere) from starvation so they may be raped, and die of disease.

It is ironic that the one nation theologically threatened with genocide, openly and without too much pretence from its more ‘religious’ member states is the one nation against which the UN has consistently demonstrated prejudice and discrimination since its inception. That state is Israel.  If a conspiracy exists it is here in the UN that it finds its voice. It is inconceivable that Israel can be subjected to this degree of demonization; that mendacity can become the currency of international diplomacy, without that is, the existence of a conspiracy to drive it.

The one and the only protection against contempt is fear of oblivion. The UN is the world’s greatest stage.  And its genre is farce.  It is time it was silenced.

There are two reasons that a people disappears from history. In the ancient world conquerors would first offer ‘surrender’ to an enemy. If they refused the people would be murdered, down to the last baby. The physical location would be raised to the ground.  The next village, town or city would be aware of their fate and therefore have a choice to make. If they were not more powerful than their antagonist they could surrender or be annihilated.  The Egyptians erased the name of those for whom death was supposed to be no more than a transitional stage to a better existence. But erasing the name meant that oblivion became eternal. No physical proof of existence was allowed to remain. The physical record was eradicated.

Islam theologically justifies this same methodology in its quest to conquer the globe.  Islam sanctifies cultural colonialism. The Koran and later writings (the Sura) support the concept of genocide as appropriate to those who oppose it. It is the theological proof of Islamic superiority over all the nations of the World.

Netanyahu, the most committed capitalist leader in Israeli history has also been its most failed propagandist. Benjamin Netanyahu, in his commitment to a laissez-faire economic policy has tried to replicate the American economic model. Instead of being transformational it has encouraged administrative and political corruption. Instead of encouraging reward it has encouraged a climate of short term greed that is contingent on individual attainment being its own reward.  This is only tangentially beneficial to the community.  The problem is that the nation is the community.

A conspiracy to control history is one that places first a restraint on debate and then works to create fear in those who oppose them.  It is what created McCarthyism in the 1950’s and it is what drives the LibLeft Islamic coalition today.  In order to have true debate there have to be rules that all nations follow; there cannot be intimidation and threats. It is essential that we follow equality of narrative.

This does not mean that all narratives are of equal legitimacy or that history is what we decide it should be, irrespective of the truth.  Edward Said’s contribution to the West’s intellectual decline was precisely this morally relativistic myopia.  This was the obscene equivocation of the new historians.  One persons’ history is not another persons’ mythology.

There is a reason that Jews are threatened in British universities and physically assaulted if they try to put forward their version of history. It is that Britain today is a fascist state that has always felt most comfortable in its Antisemitic skin.  Those who speak lies and commit assaults against the Jewish community go unpunished and instead have a public theatre to display their politically correct martyrdom at the hands of “the Jew” (or “The Zionist”). The British legal system has become a circus for Palestinian propaganda and Left wing fascist Antisemites. And Britain continues to profit financially from this situation.  As it has done for over a thousand years.