….the current year may change, but the current year it always remains.
And I’ll be emerging from hiatus to once again comment on the salutary and shitheaded shenanigans that’ll inevitably ensue—sorry, John Oliver!
Catch you cunts in 2017!
….the current year may change, but the current year it always remains.
And I’ll be emerging from hiatus to once again comment on the salutary and shitheaded shenanigans that’ll inevitably ensue—sorry, John Oliver!
Catch you cunts in 2017!
Originally posted on the now-defunct Build Freedom site, this noteworthy piece by one Mack Tanner fell beyond the reach of even the Wayback Machine. Fortunately, I had a printout lying around from way back when, and with a scan here, a conversion there, a bit of help from an online OCR reader after that, and a few paragraphs of typing to cover whatever ground all that failed to, it now has a new home, here at MRDA’s Inferno; happy reading, reprobates!
Must We Have Myths To Be Happy?
By Mack Tanner
Can human beings live happy, contented lives only if they are sustained by religious beliefs? Is reality so depressing that the human intellect can’t function unless it hides itself in mythical structures of paranormal gods, magical controls over nature, or imagined beliefs about human nature? Do myths play an important, perhaps a critical role in achieving a happy, contented personal life? Because myths are such an important part of all historical cultures, must we conclude they may be necessary for successful human survival?
I use the term myth to describe any belief that effects human existence, behavior, or history that can not be demonstrated by empirical evidence. A myth is not necessarily a false belief, it’s a belief that can’t be falsified using the scientific method.
While we generally think in terms of the paranormal when we talk about myths, myths don’t have to be based on the paranormal beliefs to be considered myths. The belief in the superiority of the white race, the inevitable success of communism, or faith in the goodness of democratic government are myths just as much as is a belief in the psychic power of crystals.
Every single human culture is designed around a complicated network of myths that have developed over the eons through an evolutionary process in which the myths often seem to take on a life of their own, much like genes. Cultural myths control human personal behavior in a myriad different ways ranging from toilet and feeding habits to civic duties. It would be an extraordinarily rare event for any child to grow up without collecting a set of mythical beliefs which he or she will accept throughout his or her lifetime as eternal truths.
Even those who renounce paranormal beliefs in gods, souls, and eternal life, often still continue to believe in a collection of cultural and secular myths. They regularly use such non-paranormal myths as basic assumptions in determining what kind of behavior is most likely to produce a happy, well adjusted person and society.
These secular myths include such concepts as natural rights, social justice, equality, altruism, the common good, democratic government, the brotherhood of human kind, and the moral requirement that humans respect the rights, property, and lives of others.
Such secular myths don’t just serve a feel-good purpose but they can have a profound impact on the life of the believer. For example, a young man or woman may decide to go into teaching or join the Peace Corps, a mythical good, rather than accept a lucrative job in business, a selfish, and therefore mythically bad, choice. These secular myths play an important role in a person’s definition of him or herself and his or her position in society.
What we call moral imperatives must either be rules imposed on humanity by some supernatural being or they are nothing but human artifacts. No empirical evidence can be found in nature that provides a justification for why any individual must follow any moral rule. God doesn’t punish the murderer, the thief, the rapist, nor the liar in this life, and neither does nature. We can easily demonstrate that all animals must feed, defecate, maintain certain body temperatures, and escape predators or suffer serious personal consequences. We can not demonstrate that any individual animal, even a human animal, will suffer inevitable serious consequences if it kills and eats its siblings, or steals food from other members of its species.
If our fundamental secular beliefs and values cannot be justified on a rational, scientific bases, then they are mythical beliefs, and all value systems and ideologies which are based on such values and beliefs must be considered mythical systems.
Does the recognition that our fundamental beliefs can not be empirically justified mark the end of reason, or is this where the journey into a world of rational thought must really begin? Does the person who examines and questions the validity of the very basis of his or her moral personality risk stepping off into a chasm of hopeless despair and nihilism, or does that thought process offer a possibility of greater understanding of oneself and one’s relation with humanity as well as the opportunity to achieve true intellectual freedom and maximum mental health?
The plain fact is that the scientific examination of human existence strips away every claim for a special status of humanity that would put us above the rest of nature. We discover that we are just one more animal and every human attribute is nothing but the sum total of a chaotic, purposeless evolution. There is no scientific proof of god, no evidence of special meaning for human existence, no set of eternal moral and ethical values, nothing in nature that can be described as good nor as evil.
Most humans find this a frightening conclusion, so frightening it’s been given a dirty name, nihilism. Having made the inevitable result of a scientific, rational examination of the human condition an obscenity, the conclusion is dismissed as something too dangerous to even consider, and even the philosophers retreat back into the last level of myths. If they are honest enough to admit they are doing so, they justify the retreat with claims that civilization couldn’t survive without belief systems where words like justice, rights, fairness, ethics, morals, good and evil are concepts that require no scientific justification.
With the exception of a few tough-minded philosophers, philosophy since the enlightenment, and especially since Darwin, has cut itself loose from any serious claim to adherence to scientific empiricism, especially when attempting to address the issues of moral behavior. Some philosophers who do dare to recognized the inevitable nihilistic truths of existence, still choose to avoid examining such truths by claiming that the human mind is incapable of dealing with them.
One such author, John F. Schumaker, in his book Wings of Illusion, proposes that paranormal myths are an evolutionary solution the allows human beings to cope–with life by avoiding the dismal reality of our own inevitable death and the lack of a transcendental meaning in our lives. Schumaker argues that reality is so distressing that the human propensity for paranormal beliefs is a form of evolved insanity that allows humans to ignore the dismal truths while getting on with the business of living and propagating.
Adopting an intellectual elitism, Schumaker admits the truth of the nihilistic conclusions and seems to have no trouble with his own sanity as a result, but then suggests that the vast majority of humanity is incapable of surviving the same shock of understanding.
Schumaker doesn’t just argue that humans must have myths to survive, he argues that the myths which best serve humanity are paranormal myths. He offers statistical evidence suggesting that people with strong paranormal religious beliefs experience better mental health than those who have no paranormal beliefs. He concludes that most humans can not live mentally healthy lives without their paranormal myths and that although we have reached a stage of technical development in which myths may threaten the very survival of the species, there is little hope that humankind will give up their myths.
Schumaker’s conclusions can be challenged on both his basic assumption and at the strength of his empirical research. His basic assumption that the human mind evolved its myth making ability as a defense against the horrors of rationality is pure conjecture. Schumaker ascribes to evolution a purposefulness that doesn’t exist in nature. Evolution is a chaotic process with no purpose nor plan, nor is there an inevitable specific result for any species. While survival of the fittest is the primary control, it is by no means certain that every attribute of a species was necessary nor critical for survival. For example the ability to create and appreciate art, literature, and music may be nothing but a pleasure freebie we collected as a part of the evolutionary development of a conscious, rational mind.
A simpler explanation than the reality-is-too-horrible-to-contemplate theory might be that myths result from an instinctual need for the human mind to explain the world around us and to gain control over it. The myth-creating ability would have allowed primitive humans to explain things they couldn’t understand, like why the sun comes up every morning, so that they could concentrate on more practical matters, like when the elk herds migrate through the territory and what time of the year the family should plant the corn.
Another alternative, or complementary, explanation of myth making might be that human societies evolved mythologies as effective tools for organizing and controlling the members of a culture and instructing the children in the working traditions of the culture. The proposal that myths were utilized as a form of societal control—the original boogie man—does as much to explain the universality of myths as Schumaker’s argument that humans had to go insane to survive the reality of existence. This theory suggests that myths and the needs for myths are cultural memes, not gene-based instincts.
Myth explanation theories based on a human need to explain and understand nature, or as tools for cultural control, or as a combination of the two needs, would also suggests that it might be much easier for humans to break out of the straight jacket of myth-believing than it would be if myth-believing is instinctual insanity.
Schumaker used a very small number of self-professed atheists in his comparison of the mental health of atheists versus religious believers. The criteria of separation was belief in the paranormal myths, not belief in myths in general. No effort was made to identify as a separate group those who had not just rejected a belief in the paranormal, but who had also rejected popular secular mythologies about human behavior.
If all that Schumaker has done is compare the level of happiness of those who believe in religious myths versus those who believe in non-religious secular myths, he has only established that some kinds of myths have greater utility for mental health than other kinds myths. He hasn’t addressed the possibility of whether or not the person who rejects both paranormal and secular myths is better off for the experience.
Most Christians are probably much happier these days than the atheistic, communist true believer and for good reason, the communist myths have failed on a grand scale. Schumaker himself concludes that the best myths are those that cannot be falsified. He makes that suggestion in comparing the old time religions with modern paganisms and new-age beliefs, but his arguments apply equally well to secular myths. One can’t prove that God doesn’t exist, but it’s easy to empirically demonstrate with recent historical evidence that socialism is not the best, nor the inevitable economic system for a human society.
A good argument can be made that it makes no sense to trade the old time religion for a half-way house of secular myths that make promises for this life that are not delivered. One may be better advised to either stick with the proven mythologies or go all the way to myth-free thinking.
While many secular humanists who reject paranormal beliefs correctly argue that religious beliefs have been directly responsible for much of the human misery and blood shed through history, they are seldom willing to examine and recognize the damage and havoc wrought by the secular mythologies and ideologies that they espouse.
The twentieth century stands out as the single bloodiest century in human history in terms of the massive numbers of people who have been killed, maimed, imprisoned, or starved as a direct result of deliberate human action. With only minor exceptions, all of this Twentieth Century misery resulted from attempts to forge societies that would guarantee a collection of secular ideological goals such as social justice, the common good, and economic equality.
As Jean-Francois Revel points out in his book The Flight from Truth: The Reign of Deceit in the Age of Information , secular intellectuals passionately defend their liberal, socialists, and Marxist myths despite the overwhelming evidence of the horrendous practical results of such secular mythologies. Revel outlines in considerable detail the way in which intellectuals selectively scorn and ignore historical evidence, always insisting that the ideologies would work if only a few new wrinkles were tried. Such intellectuals demonstrate a cognitive dissonance in defending their mythically based secular ideologies that follows the same irrational thought process of any true believer in the paranormal religions.
These same tendencies continues in America today. While the experience of more than eighty years of attempts at social engineering through the democratic process provides a solid empirical base of evidence of failure, proponents of such things as public education, government welfare systems, and central economic planning continue to refuse to recognize the repeated failures of such ideologies.
This is not to argue that we may not eventually design a human social system that works better than the chaotic system inherited from our ancestors. But we will achieve that future utopia only if we are willing to describe human behavior on a scientific basis that includes the empirical examination of our most basic beliefs and values to determine if they do indeed reflect real human behavior or if they are myths that should be discarded or ignored.
Must the recognition of the nihilistic reality that we are nothing but one more speck of meaningless dust in the universe lead inevitably to self destruction either as an individual or as a whole species?
The popular image of the nihilist is one in which the individual eventually turns to crime or to despair and suicide.
Yet, we all throw out a few myths along the way. No adult claiming to be mentally healthy believes in Santa Claus or the tooth fairy, no matter how fervent their belief may have been as a six year old child. Skeptics, agnostics, and atheists often have abandoned beliefs they may have once held in a personal god who cares, life after death, faith-healing, astrology, fortune telling, and the evil of sex outside of marriage, even though they may have been raised by parents who were totally committed to such beliefs.
Those of us who had taken the intellectual journey out of a strong religious belief system (I was once a Mormon missionary), know well how painful the process can be, both in terms of the loss of a psychological anchor, and the sad, often angry, reaction of friends, family, and loved ones who are convinced that we have given up something precious and desirable and that we are lesser, perhaps even evil, creatures for having done so.
Yet, it’s a one-way trip. For those of us who abandoned religion through a scientific thought process, there is no way we could ever go back to belief in abandoned myths.
I find my personal life better and happier for the experience of losing my religious faith. Old friends and family still mired in the beliefs of Mormonism may think they live a happier, more contented life than I do, but my experience has been that I live much happier because the old myths no longer prevent me from doing what I want to do to achieve a happy, contented status. The important question is not, what makes other people happy, but what makes me happy.
Is it enough to simply reject the myths about supernatural beings, or must the rational mind examine all the myths that make up “our fundamental beliefs”? More important, perhaps, do we have any choice, once we have started the journey, other than taking the process to wherever it might lead?
Myths are like placebos. They sometimes work, but only until we learn what they really are. More important, placebos can be extremely dangerous when taken in place of medicine that might cure the illness.
Those of us who have taken the intellectual exploration of human existence to its final, nihilistic conclusion find that the claim that the rejection of all myths is so terrible it can’t be tolerated by the human mind is one more myth that can not be demonstrated by empirical evidence.
Strip away all the myths, and the human mind is still driven by instincts and learning to survive and to engage in pleasurable activities. We are all a chaotic combination of instinctual drives, culturally acquired learned instructions, and individual experiences. The human being is a social animal and our best chances for not just survival but personal contentment and happiness are most effectively enhanced by cooperating with others. Even the most rational of human beings must be constantly evaluating how one can best enlist others in cooperative efforts that will achieve the chosen goals of each individual.
We discover through the continuing experiment of daily living that abiding by the so-called common decencies usually does pay of in terms of our own selfish interests. The large majority of the cultural rules can be explained by examining their potential to contribute to individual survival and self-fulfillment. Many of the cultural myths and moral beliefs reflect what is very probably gene-driven instinct. Other moral myths represent a cultural memory of behaviour rules that help grease the cooperative social effort and teach the young the common rules of behaviour. They may be mythical values, but they work in encouraging cooperative behaviour.
The fact that a rational, empirical examination of the human condition leads to the inevitable conclusion that all our beliefs and basic values are based in myth does not require that we abandon all such rules as guidelines for personal behavior. It does allow us the freedom to examine each rule and to determine whether or not any single social or cultural rule actually contributes to our own personal happiness, well being, and immediate survival, and to discard those which don’t.
If we examine the evidence of results, we find that abiding by the common decencies works very well for us as long as we live in a cultural setting in which there is a general consensus that all will comply with the same decencies. The difficulties occur when we must deal with other cultures which observe a different set of common decencies, or when we deal with individuals who have opted in their own selfish interest to ignore the rules, or to use the rules to manipulate us and maximize their advantage at the expense of ours.
In the complex world in which we live, the latter conditions have become the norm rather than the exception. As a result, rational, mythless individuals must be constantly re-examining their personal set of social responses in order to insure that they achieve their own expectations of a cooperative social effort. The person who is able to make decision’s on the basis of the reality of the situation has a considerable advantage over the individual who must also measure his/her actions against some mythical code of behavior that restricts his/her options. The one-eyed man may be king in the kingdom of the blind, but in the kingdom of the morally honest and altruistic, it’s the selfish liar who ends up with all the wealth and power.
The only way to judge the value of any human artifact is by judging its utility as demonstrated by the evidence of results. But while most secular humanists will readily admit that situational ethics are the only choice for the rational human being, they do not take the next step, addressing in a rational, scientific examination the basic question, the utility of whom?
The philosophical utilitarians always assume that the best behavior must be the behavior that serves the utility of the common good. But there is no empirical evidence that the common good has any value in nature that is greater than, or even equal to, the selfish good. The idea of the common good is another myth, another human artifact. As Richard Dawkins points out in The Selfish Gene, natural evolution is based on individual survival of the fittest, not species survival.
The unresolvable difficulty in choosing between a selfish good and a common good is the question of how one determines what constitutes a common good. Common-good utilitarians tend to ignore this question, and with good reason. In any complicated human cultural situation, it is impossible to determine the common good because so many different conflicts exist between individuals.
Most discussions about common good moral dilemmas revolve around the question of who must sacrifice him or herself for the common good. This is a contradiction in terms. If the common good means the good of all, then it can’t be in the common good if one person must sacrifice an advantage while others benefit from that sacrifice. The lumberman wants logs, the ecologists spotted owl habitat; some want legal abortion financed by public funds, others want to make all abortions illegal; the fundamentalist Christian wants prayer and creationism taught in public schools, the secular humanists science and evolution. These are irreconcilable differences that can not be settled by reason and logic. There is no common ground, no common good, because each side uses a different set of basic assumptions in describing what is good and bad. The only way to finally settle such conflicts is by combat at the ballot box, in the courts, on the streets, or by bargained separation. The end result too often is that the winning side will take advantage of the losing side through force of numbers or strength of arms.
A scientific examination of human behavior demonstrates that human beings always act selfishly, not altruistically. They may claim to act in the common good, but they always describe the common good so that it insures the satisfaction of their own selfish desire.
The same thing also happens when humans claim to be acting in any morally correct manner. Humans have not only developed moral myths, they have developed an uncanny ability of self justification that allows every human to personally convince him or herself that he or she is acting in accordance with their personal moral principles and the common good of all.
Just as the rejection of myth in favor of the scientific method leads to the inevitable conclusion that humans have no special meaning nor purpose, so too must a rational examination of situational ethics lead to the conclusion that the only sound way to judge the value of a given cultural rule is by judging the impact the rule has on one’s own individual survival, happiness, and general contentment.
This is what all people do all the time. No one ever makes any decision regarding relations with anyone else for anything but a selfish reason. Even when someone lays down his life for a friend or an ideology, he or she either initiates the action with the expectation that he will survive to reap the hero’s reward or he does so in expectation of a heavenly reward or a hero’s grave. Give a person enough time to think about it, and he or she won’t do it at all.
Like the recognition of the nihilistic conclusions of existence does not necessarily lead to a state of permanent mental despair, neither does the recognition that all acts are selfish and all claims of selfless behaviour are nothing but self-justifications lead to social breakdown. instead, the recognition of the basic selfish nature of all human beings is the first step toward building more effective and enduring methods of cooperation. Any theory of social organisation which is built on the assumption that people will serve the common good rather than their own selfish interest is doomed to failure. The free enterprise economic system works not only because it is a morally superior system, but because it recognizes the basic selfish nature of human beings.
Human society does work. But it doesn’t work because of religious morality nor because of mythical secular values like altruism, fairness, justice, nor moral excellence. It works only because each individual can best maximise his or her own selfish desires by participating as a member of the society and culture.
Mostly, the driving selfishness that makes society works, occurs on the unconscious level. Our genes make cooperation and socialization a pleasurable activity and loneliness a misery. Our baggage of cultural learning greases the way and makes cooperation and voluntary exchange easy and pleasurable activities.
A rational human who rejects all mythologies, including the popular secular mythologies, can still recognise that it is in his or her own best interest to live and work in a functioning society in which people cooperate with each other, not for the common good, but for mutually identified selfish goals. People who give up faith in all the secular myths don’t have to give up sexual pleasure, family love, the joys of friendship, the economic rewards of cooperative effort, nor any other social pleasure of life. Such a person is seldom disappointed in what other people do, because he or she expects that other people will always act in their own perceived selfish interests.
Because one recognizes that there is no eternal moral imperative that prohibits lying, rape, theft, murder, nor slavery, one is not compelled to commit such acts. Any rational person can very quickly identify empirical evidences that suggest that such acts will not improve one’s long term chances for survival and happiness. Rational people who reject all myths cannot claim to be moral people, but they can claim to be good neighbors.
The human, rational mind has developed into the single most effective survival tool in nature because it allows a human being to overrule both instinct and learning when a changing condition makes any instinct or cultural rule an impediment to personal survival. In the modem, rapidly changing world in which we live, the rational mind becomes a critical tool for survival as we are bombarded by conflicting claims from all sides on how we should live our lives. Myths are the handles which tyrants, politicians, and intellectual ideologues use to manipulate us and enlist us in hopeless social and political causes that feed their egos and purses while stripping us of our personal wealth and happiness, and sometimes our very lives.
All myths eventually fail. The best of the paranormal myths survive because they postpone the promised payoff until after death. The secular myths all promise payoffs in this life. Inevitably we all must discover that justice seldom prevails, that altruism doesn’t always pay back dividends, that life isn’t fair nor can we make it fair, that politicians and government bureaucrats care only for their own selfish interests, that no matter how much we sacrifice for what we call the common good, those who learn to manipulate the common good to their own selfish desires will be the ones who prosper, and that government can not give us an economy that works to the advantage of all.
The myth-free individual has no expectation of such rewards. He or she knows that this is a chaotic world in which we have little control over events, and that our only chance of happiness will result through our use of our intelligence in exercising what control we can over the environment around us so that it serves our own selfish needs.
Whether the process of myth-free living makes one a happier, mentally healthier individual can only be determined by each individual. Most people are so terrified by the reality of existence, they refuse to even consider the possibility that they can live without their myths. Every secular institution from public schools to government bureaucracies do all they can to keep the terror alive because the secular institutions of social control can only survive if people believe the secular myths, just like the churches can only survive if people belief the paranormal myths.
I’ve personally met so few individuals who were consciously trying to live without myths that I can count them on the fingers of one hand. While those few all appear to be dealing better with life than the myth addicts, that’s not enough people to prove the case.
For me there is no choice. I jumped into the brink and found that the rational, scientific, hard-headed, no-nonsense, myth-free living serves me, my wife, and my children much better than all the myths we left behind.
“The trouble with fighting for human freedom is that one spends most of one’s time defending scoundrels. For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at the beginning if it is to be stopped at all.”
– H.L. Mencken
Well, it looks like they finally did it! After years of trying to nail him to the wall, only to be met with a chorus of ‘U Can’t Touch This’, the British state finally succeeded in shivving hate-preachin’ Islamist icon Anjem Choudary last month. The media let forth a collective cheer upon announcement of the news, with columnists from various outlets expressing their elation that the clown prince of the caliphate had finally received his comeuppance. I found myself somewhat entertained by the coverage, particularly the parts which shone a light on the pious propagandist’s party days as Randy “Andy”.
I found myself considerably less amused by the pretext under which he was arrested; according to reports, Choudary, along with co-Islamist Mohammed Rahman, faces a decade-long incarceration for swearing allegiance to desert pirates Daesh (a.k.a. ISIS) and exhorting his YouTube audience to take up arms and sod off to Syria to join them. Understandably, I found it outrageous: They want to lock him up just for that? I expected something approaching material support to invite the retribution of Scotland Yard and the Old Bailey—a bit of funding here, an ironclad terror plot there—but nope!
Instead, I got the story of a bloke dragged before the gavel for being nowt more than a bit of a mouthy cunt.
As such, the torrent of triumphalism gushing through the press left me cold. For every Brendan O’Neill contesting the courts, there were a thousand columnists applauding their crazy measures; even so-called free-speech advocates and classical liberals like Douglas Murray and Maajid Nawaz congratulated Choudary’s capture in a disappointing dissent from form (then again, given how they exempted “Holocaust denial” and “hate speech” from their “defence” of free speech following the Charlie Hebdo massacre, I can’t say I was terribly surprised). And, even keeping in mind her nationalistic sentiments and marked animus towards Islam, I thought Katie Hopkins would’ve known better than to endorse collar-clutching for talking bollocks on the Internet, given her own run-ins with the rozzers; to quote the title of a more recent column of hers: “Big Brother is watching all of us – and YOU could be next”.
Choudary, for all his cancerous caliphatism, groks the disconnect between rhetoric and reality when it comes to freedom of speech in England and the rest of the Western World; as well as entertaining me—and enraging the general public—with calls to claim “Jihad Seeker’s Allowance” (and blocking me for making a perfectly innocent enquiry on Twitter), he posted a series of tweets spotlighting inconsistencies in the official narrative of Western civil liberty (now removed, along with the rest of his account—thanks Twitter!).
And, boy, does the UK justice system seem bent on making an example of its love of civil liberties out of him!
Now, I’m well aware that they and, from the looks of things, most Brits, see his words as belonging to some special category of speechcrime called “incitement”, a magical realm where rhetoric resembles remote control, but even a mulish misanthrope like me finds it hard to believe Man is that much of a machine! Whatever oratory opiates those two murderous Michaels imbibed from Chutiya Choudary, the decision to cleave Lee Rigby to death in the broad daylight of a Woolwich street rests squarely on their shariaphilic shoulders. And as for the whole supposed invocation to die for Daesh, a trip to Syria takes a bit more planning and foresight than a drive down to South London. Sans a painstakingly specified target (I’m looking at you, Spike Lee!), talk of “incitement” sounds like a hollow, unwitting pass of the buck, as well as a sterling example of the soft bigotry of low expectations: Those poor, dumb Muzzies can’t help being so easily led—it’s the nature of the beast!
As things stand, this bloviating bhenchod faces a decade inside for a campaign of slack-jawed slacktivism, reminiscent of that Kony baloney, those pathetic French-flag Facebook filters following the Paris attacks, and the (admittedly hilarious) #DicksOutForHarambe hashtag following the shooting of that silverback at Cincinnati Zoo. For all the furore thrown his way for his jihadist invective, the only triggers Choudary pulls are the emotional ones belonging to his most fervent detractors. Yet, his social media cry of #DicksOutForDaesh has been found absolutely haram by a court of law.
Which makes me wonder: what if Choudary’s caging, like the similarly pathetic burkini ban in France, is meant as a symbolic show of “strength” from an institution ill-equipped to deal with actual Islam-related predations? Just as the burkini ban comes off as a way to take attention away from the French state’s contributions to the migrant crisis and inept anti-terrorism measures, could the overly harsh treatment of Choudary be an overcompensation for the British state’s timorous response to the Machete Michaels or their decades-long cover-up of the now-infamous Rotherham “grooming” gangs? Methinks the Bailey doth protest too much.…
Or perhaps it’s merely another time-tested move in the Trojan Horse long game of plying the populace into laying down their liberties: single out an Acceptable Target saying something “unacceptable” to sling in the slammer. I remember the chorus of cheers back in 2004, when the filth collared ex-BNP bigwig Nick Griffin for “inciting racial hatred”, based on undercover footage of him slamming Islam as a “vicious, wicked faith”(though I don’t recall Islam ever meeting the necessary criteria to be considered a race); now that Islamists outstrip ethnonationalists in the bête noire leagues, if only by a sliver, what better way for the totalitarian humanist overlords of this island state to make the muzzle seem all snug ‘n’ seductive? Looks like the perfect prelude to the implementation of the “Snoopers’ Charter”, conjured up ‘n’ championed by the Wicked Witch of Westminster herself, Theresa May; it’s not like her recent relocation to Number 10’ll exactly be a hurdle to her desire to turn proposal into policy. If they can wheel actual blasphemy laws back in through the gate, anything’s possible!
In light of this encroachment of secular sharia, a bit of civil-libertarian countersignalling might not be such a bad preamble to a more palpable pushback. If imprisonment will inevitably make (more of) an icon out of Anjem, I can think of nothing more haram than to appropriate him for an ideal that both he and the state silencing him (not to mention a sizeable slab of the populace, Muslim and otherwise) clearly find contemptible: #ChoadsOutForChoudary, liberty-lovers?
ADDENDUM (9/9/16): Two days after I published this post, Choudary got five-and-a-half years for his agency-arresting speechcrime. Only half as bad as projected, I guess….
You first came to my attention in the run up to the election that put you in office, when you were pitted against your fellow vote whore Zac Goldsmith in a neck-and-neck PR rivalry. Being a bloke with a sliver of pride, self-respect, and anti–democratic sentiment (Brexit aside, but that’s a tale for another time), I rolled my eyes at the carnival barking, secure in the conviction that I’d be voting for neither of you cunts (nor for any of the other cunts gaming for the London throne). That said, I found the smears by Goldsmith exceptionally slimy, what with him playing up your Islamic affiliation to invoke fears of a terrorist Londonistan in the electorate. That hardly jived with my impression of you as a chilled-out, queer-friendly, Jew-friendly moderate. Sure, you’d rubbed shoulders with some exceptionally sketchy fellows-in-faith in the past—endorsers of jihad and the like—but more out of political pandering pragmatism than ardent affinity, going by the overview of liberal Muslim reformist Maajid Nawaz; in short, more a case of typical politician than typical Islamist.
As such, when London’s ballot-botherers elected you as mayor, I figured—contrary to the doomsaying by pearl-clutching, race-baiting YouTube personalities—that your tenure in office would be anything but remarkable; like your predecessors Red Ken and BoJo, you would be another mundane mayor pushing out policies that’d piss people off in perfectly pedestrian ways. As such, when you ragged on Donald Trump’s (admittedly sweeping and likely unworkable) proposal to ban foreign Muslims from entering the States, and started yapping about there being too many white men on the Transport for London board, I put it down to the political correctness endemic in the Western world, encouraging those in its thrall to see dastardliness behind every disparity.
And then, you banned this billboard:
Such a decision did you no favours with those seeing you as the poster child of Islamification, who branded your ban a step toward a future Saudi Albion, characterised by fatwas against bikinied bodies, amongst other ills.
However, a quick read of your reasoning made clear your actual motivation, rooted, once again, not in any imported ideology but in an outlook all too indigenous to the modern West; more concretely, it’s the outlook of the regressive leftist, the so-called “social justice warrior”, made mandate, evidenced by your claim to be banning the billboards because they supposedly “demean people, particularly women, and make them ashamed of their bodies”. Some stubborn souls will nevertheless call your rationale an example of taqiyya—the cry of the caliphatic conqueror concealing his true intent (or is it?)—but I think your stance sincere and awful enough to be judged on its own (lack of) merit. To paraphrase the now-infamous chant of bingowinged SJW bint Trigglypuff, I’d sum up your stance with the slogan: “Keep your hate sleaze off this transport!”
But that’s not all that seems to be driving you, seeing as you made the point of justifying your decision “as the father of two teenage daughters”, worried about “unrealistic” bikini bodies molesting the fragile eyes of your adolescent crotchlings. You remind me of professed “anarchist” Noam Chomsky when he compared the supposed “humiliation and degradation” of pornography to kiddy-fiddling, calling for it to be stopped in a similar fashion. Like him, you infantilise those past the age of infancy, effectively sticking a stranglehold round the larynx of female agency: Ban this sick filth…‘cos that’s what Daddy likes!
Not that there aren’t women who don’t eat dat discipline up; indeed, many a shehadi of the sisterhood—those strong, empowered, hear-me-roar grrls who need a man like a fish needs a bicycle—splooshed her knickers, seduced by the certainty of never again having to suffer the sight of a toned physique on her morning commute to the NPO. I lost count of all the feminist fuckwits who sprang to your defence last week; for all their protestations against “the patriarchy”, they seem all to eager to slob on its knob to secure or reward a desired outcome. Just ask Stateside actress (and Sinead O’Connor impersonator) Rose McGowan, who (somewhat hypocritically, given her resume) kicked up a social media stink over another billboard, this time for the recently-released X-Men: Apocalypse movie, calling on the company responsible to nip the depicted “casual violence against women” in the bud, despite the picture’s poor put-upon “victim” being a superheroine, taking her lumps with the lads. It seems that lip-service notions of “equality”can’t override the tried ‘n’ true perks of playing the damsel-in-distress to a budding knight in salving armour…or a placating yet phallocratic papa.
So, yeah, unlike most of your other detractors, I think your secularism sincere enough; however, given the therapeutic, authoritarian strain you subscribe to, I can’t say that it makes much of a difference. Still, take solace in the fact that you’re well and truly part of a Western legal tradition exemplified by speech prohibitions in various European nations, “Nordic models”, strip club bans, and the reintroduction of literal blasphemy laws via the Trojan Horse of “tolerance”; in effect, a softer, secularised sharia.
No wonder you slobber over the supranational scrotum of the E.U., you prohibitive, paternalistic, vote-whoring fuckwit!
I’ve kept up intermittently with the bloggings-on of Janet Bloomfield, more commonly known by the nom de guerre JudgyBitch; opining on subjects such as misandry, the race-IQ gap, Donald Trump, and the failures of feminism, the Bitch has made quite a name for herself amongst the denizens of both the manosphere and the alt-right. My own limited reading of her gives me the impression of a writer with a penchant for provocative, push-button prose.
Over the weekend, manospherian and one-time guest poster at JB’s site Dre Morell brought a recent post of hers to my attention; it was an interesting piece, covering the clash between holding onto a creed and holding onto a career. Should one suffer unemployment merely for holding beliefs one’s employers and/or customers may find objectionable? JudgyBitch, seeing past her own schadenfreude at a “man-hating feminst [getting] fired by her female boss”, says nay.
I’ll confess to enjoying a few moments of petty glee at her comeuppance, but serious reflection forces me to acknowledge that this is a disturbing event with the potential to cause much more harm than good, if adopted widely.
In order for the clinic’s patients to be offended over the videos, they would have to know about them. And even if they did know about them, and were offended, who cares? The only thing EliSophie should have been fired for was her behaviour, in my opinion. The moment she treated male patients with contempt or disrespect, buh-bye. Her poems about men having small dicks are her business, and if she keeps them her business and does not let her beliefs affect her job performance, then she deserves to have a job.
She then goes on to defend Christian bakers refusing to cater to homogamous unions; but does that not constitute an on-the-job example of belief informing behaviour? JB agrees, whilst pointing out that, unlike the fired femorrhoid, the caterers in Christ stand at the helm of their businesses; if they’re gonna incur the full costs of self-employment, why not the perks? The clientele foot ‘n’ wallet vote will decide, one way or another. Admittedly, it leaves little defence for employees who choose to express views inimical to the party line, like the misandrist mentioned above. Could a professedly atheist employee hope to flourish in such a foxhole? Is self-censorship the price one has to pay for productive and sustaining employment? The JudgyBitch finds herself flummoxed, citing nowt more than a feeling (which I share) that a too-liberal exercise of hiring ‘n’ firing based on one’s off-the-clock opinions sets a shitty precedent (e.g. picture the scenario of a professed anarchist or anti-statist having nowt but public-sector slots available as sustenance—it is to laugh…and cry!).
And then, she goes and throws those pesky Muslims into the mix:
Should Muslim bakers be allowed to refuse?
This will be hard to articulate, and I am going to do a clumsy job of it. I apologize. Fundamentalist Christians who oppose gay marriage and refuse to bake cakes for gays are on the wrong side of history when it comes to how the Christian public sees the issue. North America is still a Christian nation, founded on Christian principles, adhering to basic Christian doctrines like forgiveness, honesty, kindness, sin, redemption, etc. It doesn’t matter if you personally believe in God, or believe in some other God: we are a Christian nation founded on distinctly Christian values. The occasional baker who refuses to serve gay couples doesn’t, and won’t, dramatically alter the landscape for the majority, who have no issues with gay couples getting married and eating cake.
Muslim bakeries are refusing to bake cakes on the grounds of a hateful, violent religious and political belief system that is murdering gay men in horrific ways right now. And given the opportunity, they will bring that religious and political system into force across the whole planet. Part of forcing them to integrate with our values includes forcing them to bake cakes for gays, and if they can’t handle that we don’t want them here because they pose a legitimate threat in a way that Christian bakers simply do not.
As if the cake mix wasn’t conflicted enough, she slaps this fallacy fromage into the bowl, rendering the whole concoction inedible. This incongruous slab of special pleading seems to be a by-product of an amygdala-affrayed animus towards Allah’s abids, no doubt fuelled by reports of beheadings, bombings, and multiple gang gropings. To quote a friend of similar inclination: “Islamists are so aggressively aggressive that they trigger aroooga! aroooooooga! levels of arousal in other primates….It’s hard to calm yourself down when you’re dealing with this level of hatred.”
That said, I’ve yet to see said friend albatrossed by Allahphobia to the same extent as JB; the latter, in a glaring display of blame by association, proposes to penalise American Muslims for the dastardly doings of their co-religionists across the Atlantic. Going by my observations, and the accounts of fellow infidels Stateside, the American acolytes of Allah generally strike me as the least god-pozzed adherents of their faith by a considerable stretch; thus, JB’s call to strip that demographic of their freedom of association comes across as doubly laughable. Imagine, for instance, being an Ahmadiyya Muslim—like the Sunni-slain shopkeeper, Asad Shah—and having to submit to Bloomfield’s Saileresque “solution” on account of those who murder and persecute those of your sect a whole ocean away, despite the fact that your subcreedal lineage stretches back almost a century in the States sans significant strife; the tragicomedy writes itself!
Whatever the stuffy, conservative views of Allahphile-Americans regarding homosexuality, refusing to bake a cake for two blokes tying the knot is still a considerable distance away, conceptually and geographically, from blokes tossing blokes off buildings for tossing off blokes. Besides, why would any homogamous couple trust a fuddie-duddie fundie to cater to their wedding wants; what if manhandled Muslim bakers suddenly decide that phlegm, faeces, boogers, and cum would make absolutely halal ingredients for their special confections?
The issue of freedom of employee expression vs. freedom of employer association is one I intend to revisit in a future episode. For now, I’ll just say that if JudgyBitch fancies herself as a spokesperson for Western Enlightenment values, she really needs to step up her game; too much has already been compromised and conceded without her ordering fresh kindling for the dumpster fire.
Failing that, she might as well just quit wasting keystrokes, hand the ball over to the opposition, and bend face-down-arse-up in the direction of Mecca.
Amidst all the usual bombings, bigotries, and bureaucracies that characterise modern life, it’s nice to have the odd thing to smile, if not outright belly laugh, about. Hulk Hogan’s financial ravishing of the sex-tape-leaking hacks at Gawker springs to mind, news of it giving me a raging schadenfreude stiffy a few weekends back. Prior to that, however, I found myself awed and amused by a bold show of defiance toward another organisation I hold in contempt—the United Nations.
Ostensibly formed as a global peacekeeping organisation in the wake of World War II, the United Nations, or U.N., has, over time, made it clear that the peace it means to impose on the world resembles the Pax Romana (or Pax Islama), mandated and managed by way of a top-down global hegemon.
This was illustrated to me in glaring Technicolor back in 2009, when the U.N. Human Rights Council, at Pakistan’s behest, democratically declared “defamation of religion” to be a human rights violation, effectively endorsing every fatwa and blasphemy law decreed by mortal men. Who’d have thought that, all this time, Dar al-Saud were fighting for social justice one flogged apostate at a time? A lash to the back is a privilege well and truly checked!
Speaking of social justice warriors, I didn’t know whether to laugh or sigh when the organisation—as part of a gynocentric drive to muzzle opinions inflammatory to the ol’ femorrhoids—invited game-policing special pleaders Anita Sarkeesian and Zoe Quinn to mewl into a microphone about mean tweets and the existential threat they pose to women everywhere. Clearly, coddling a coven of censorship-friendly “fucking cunts”, to quote a formidably furious Mercedes Carrera, is just as pressing a priority as stopping Saudi stonings and forced child marriages, if not more so; I can still hear those September sobs, even as I type.
With that precedent, the next thing to come to my attention hardly proved a great surprise, scorn-inducing though it was. Whilst browsing the social media feeds back in February, I cast eyes on a link from the Niche Gamer site detailing the U.N.’s latest liberticidal lunge:
The UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), will be examining (SOURCE, our mobile URLs show up the same as regular text – working on a fix) Japan’s record on women’s rights.
The reason this has gotten onto our radar is that one of the possible talking points is the “banning of the sale of video games or cartoons involving sexual violence against women.”
The wording of the phrase could imply that they’ll be discussing banning eroge games like Rapelay (or other games of that nature), but with no clear guidelines as to what “sexual violence” entails, it feels like the definition can be used to include games that aren’t even eroge.
As expected, the readership of said site reacted with uproar at the possible intrusion upon their entertainment by questioning the priorities of the organisation, what with more severe ills infesting the global landscape.
A glance at the U.N. commission report confirmed the corrosion running through the CEDAW cerebrum:
Among the possible issues for discussion between CEDAW and a delegation from the Japanese Government are: Banning the sale of video games or cartoons involving sexual violence against women; employment equality, illegal dismissal of women due to pregnancy and childbirth; sexual harassment in the workplace; reintegration into school textbooks of issue of “comfort women”; compensation for women with disabilities sterilised against their will; effect on women, particularly pregnant women, of health programmes introduced after the Fukushima nuclear disaster; difference in pension benefits for men and women, poverty among older women.
In short, a few rapey pictures ‘n’ pixels constitute as much of an existential concern as poverty, irradiation, and forced sterilisation, in the mind of a CEDAW delegate: the kind of shitbrained sentiment which gets me thinking that a few forced sterilisations wouldn’t be such a horrible idea, applied to those jokers.
All that said, my scorn elevated to schadenfreude upon reading the response of one Kumiko Yamada, representative of the Japanese wing of the Women’s Institute Of Contemporary Media Culture; unimpressed by the UN busybodies’ piss-poor priorities, she took it upon herself to remind the retards that the rapey goings-on in hentai and the like weren’t fucking real and thus constituted no threat whatsoever to living, breathing women; furthermore, she went one better by drawing attention to the female mangaka, and other creatives, who would likely be out of jobs (and on the street) as a result of the U.N.’s meddling:
If we are asked to consider whether “Protecting Women’s Rights in Japan” requires us to “Ban the Sale of Manga and Video Games Depicting Sexual Violence,” then we must reply that that is an absolute “no.”
Reasons for Our Opinion:
Reason #1 – The so-called sexual violence in manga and video games is a made-up thing and as such does not threaten the rights of actual people; therefore, it is meaningless in protecting the rights of women.
Reason #2 – In Japan, and especially when it comes to manga, these are creative fields that women themselves cultivated and worked hard by their own hand to create careers for themselves. If we were to “ban the sale of manga that includes sexual violence,” it would do the opposite and instead create a new avenue of sexism toward women.
As stated above, we cannot say that banning the sale of manga and video games that “depict sexual violence” is valid, even if we were to agree that the goal of protecting the rights of women is correct.
There is nothing to be gained from regulating fictional sexual violence. However, while you’re trying to fix the rights of fictional characters, you’re leaving the human rights of real women in the real world left to rot. As well, in Japan, the entire reason we have a media genre such as manga that developed to take on themes such as the sexual exploitation of women came from an attitude to tolerate “drinking the pure and the dirty without prejudice.” It’s because we had the freedom to express our views and with that to express the view of a world of humans that live and die, that there are pure and wonderful things and dirty and nasty things mixed with each other.
The failure of the blue-helmet bluestockings to save cartoon cunny from a drawn demon dicking becomes all the more hilarious upon remembering the spate of rape scandals dogging their global “peacekeeping” efforts. Yes, “question and verify” still applies, even to the United Nations, but it’s rather telling that the wretched organisation initially suspended one of its own, Anders Kompass, for passing on reports of child sexual abuse by “peacekeepers” to the French authorities. With allegations of Nations noncing stretching decades back, to locales as diverse as Kosovo, DR Congo, Haiti, and Liberia, it wouldn’t surprise me if a raging inferno lay beneath the smoke (even bearing in mind that it’s not always the case); after all, don’t those who shout loudest often have the most to hide?
I mean, when one’s already suspect stable of troops works alongside another group of “peacekeepers” accused of forcing the local girls to gape for canine cock, protesting against forced fucks of fiction serves as a cheap ‘n’ easy means of distraction; it certainly beats getting one’s house in order!
For all the criticisms levelled at desert pirates Daesh, their M.O. seems to resemble the U.N.’s in several key ways, with its fatwa-friendliness, universalist aspredations*, and a heralded, hypocritical hard-on for pious prohibition and penile predation. If one didn’t know any better, it’d be easy to suspect the Muslim Männerbund of taking more than a few notes.
Have any sons, brothers, boyfriends, or any other males of note in your life? Be sure to shoot ’em a side eye should they suddenly develop a wanderlust-inducing fetish for burqas or blue helmets.
Then toss ’em a terabyte of tentacle porn so that they can stroke it well ‘n’ truly out of their systems.
ADDENDUM (5/4/16): It just came to my attention that the current chair of the U.N. is none other than one Faisal Bin Hassan Trad, ambassador for that Wahhabist desert paradise, Saudi Arabia; perhaps my Daesh analogy carries much more in the way of currency than I first thought! Granted, he’s only held the role since June, but quite a bit has taken place in his godridden land since then, including the lashing of liberal dissident blogger Raif Badawi.
Methinks the fuckery so far witnessed from this outhouse of an organisation won’t even touch that which is to come—assume that prayer position, infidels!
*Aspredation = aspiration + predation (…or perhaps ass-spread-ation is apt?)