Pondering whether or not Jews are ’smarter’ than everyone else is like asking if basketball players can sink more three pointers than everyone else.

The evidence speaks for itself. The real question, is why Jews are smarter. There are of course, many theories. Some point to genetics, others point to culture. Yet others see the Jewish achievement as a combination of factors, giving no added weight to culture or genetics. Let’s examine that.

The case for superior genetics is pretty easy to make. The smart Christian kid became a priest, or, if she ‘heard the call,’ became a nun- and that was that. The smart Jewish kid married the Rabbi’s daughter and produced more smart kids- and that was that.

From a cultural standpoint, there is an equally easy connection that can be made. Even in the most religious of households, Jews had to read and write in at least two languages, Hebrew and the ‘language of the land.’ In addition, Jews were obligated to participate in the welfare the community- not just their own, but the community of which the were a part. While many people have referred to the Jews as ‘clannish,’ the facts clearly indicate otherwise. As a group, Jews give more charity per capita than any other group. Various studies have concluded that most charity is given to make the donor feel good. Jews, on the other hand, historically give money because it’s the right thing to do. Within that community, there is a whole subculture of anonymous giving.

It is to that subculture we wish to look. We believe that there is much that can be learned. We’ll start by the world we live in and how we see ourselves within that world. That idea is not as clear as one might think.

We are told that our world can be looked at in one of two ways. We either focus and concern ourselves with personal productivity, managing the information we have, or we look to gather as much information as possible, from as many sources as possible, before we direct our attention to the task at hand.

To be clear, these are not ethereal ideas. This battle of ideas has been picked up by Microsoft and Google. They are slugging it out and the winner will have a huge impact on society and culture as we know it.

Microsoft’s new search engine focuses on personal productivity. It searches your hard drive for whatever it is you might need. They believe that web search results mixed in with your own work are too cumbersome and unwieldy. Too much information, from too many sources, only serves to slow productivity down.

Google search engines not only search your hard drive, but the web and email as well. They believe that having as much knowledge as possible at your fingertips is really enhanced connectivity- and that connectivity, shared, is all empowering.

What does all that have to do with the Jews? Everything. They are the embodiment of both those schools of thought- and they have the track record to prove it. Personal productivity and shared connectivity, amongst themselves and the human efforts to excel and achieve.

The Jews, it seems, understand that what is on the menu aren’t the only things that can come out of the kitchen. With those same ingredients and a bit of creativity, we can expand our choices. We are not limited to what we are offered- or taught.

That may be the lesson we can learn from the Jews- that success and achievement are components, a recipe which we can all put to use.

In other words, maybe the Jews aren’t really smarter than us, IQ tests notwithstanding. Maybe it is because Jews, as culture and as part of their faith, accept as dogma certain truths, despite having seemingly opposite foundations. For example, they are as committed to justice as they are to education. They are as committed to helping others as they are committed to God. They commit to personal and communal truths, each in equal measure.

Success is the result of individual effort, initiative and productivity. Knowledge is the result of that connectivity. When fused together, they make for a powerful culture- and belief structure.

What is their secret? How do they know? We can only guess. Still, there must be a recipe. The Jews are the only people that have survived from antiquity. As we noted in The SC&A Idiots Guide To Zionism: What It Is And Why It Matters:

Where are the Hittites? Why does no one find it remarkable that in most world cities today there are Jews but not one single Hittite even though the Hittites had a great flourishing civilization while the Jews nearby were a weak and obscure people? When one meets a Jew in New York or New Orleans or Paris or Melbourne, it is remarkable that no one considers the event remarkable. What are they doing here? But it is even more remarkable to wonder, if there are Jews here, why are there not Hittites here? Where are the Hittites? Show me one Hittite in New York City.

Doesn’t get much clearer than that. It is also true that we know the Jews because they know themselves. They have not wiped the memory of their history, faith or culture from their collective minds. They have assimilated- and yet they have managed to retain their identity- an identity clearly tied to the past and an unshakable set of values. They remember the joys and the tragedies, as if they happened yesterday. On the Passover holiday, Jews are taught to regard the liberation from Egypt as if it happened to them. As we noted, there is much we can learn.

While we may not all share the history of the Jews, we all share in the legacy of those men who founded this great nation. As the French playwright and philosopher, Moliere said, “The less we are like our ancestors, the less we deserve them.”

The history and memories of a people are comprised of individual lifetimes- not necessarily in detail, but in the collective understanding that by applying certain truths and commitments to family, culture and community, we will succeed, no matter the adversity.

Some have predicted the demise of democracies, comparing free nations to the decline and eventual collapse of the Roman Empire, but in fact, the exact opposite is true. The empires that have declined are those dysfunctional regimes that made it their business to attempt to control every aspect of the lives of their citizens. The unstoppable juggernaut that was Communism and Socialism of the 20th century is no more, having been replaced by ideologies that embrace freer expression and individual initiative. Russia, China and Vietnam are all works in progress. There will be fits and starts, stumbles and falls, but in the end, the freedom genie was let out of the bottle in Philadelphia- and there is no going back.

Via Darcey (whom we don’t visit nearly enough as of late. SC&A have been working- you have no excuse):

GapKids recently featured a white, crocheted string bikini you’d likely see Anna Kournikova wearing on the cover of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue. The bikini was for a 12-month-old

There’s more. Read the rest here and be sure to click on the Arizona Republic link.

Dancing Queens

June 29, 2007

In 2000, Hugo Chavez demanded that Venezuela’s powerful union elections be overseen by the state. That provocation led to the condemnation of international labor federations. As has been noted by many observers, when the state interferes with labor unions, fascism follows.

Chavez was just getting warmed up. In a page taken from the national socialism play book, Chavez passed the Enabling Act, allowing for rule by decree for an entire year. The Confederation of Venezuelan Workers called for a general strike in response. Predictably, the man with those kind of national socialist tendencies, wasn’t done. In a further attempt to silence critics and to tighten his choke hold on Venezuela’s free media, Chavez closed down a major opposition TV network (not just a single station, as as often been misreported by Chavez apologists). The Venezuelan president has threatened to further use the “Law of Social Responsibility in Radio and Television” to shut down other media outlets that is critical of his regime or supports any kind of opposition.

Hugo Chavez also has the organized support of the racist neo-Nazi movement in Germany, embodied by the National-Democrat Party. He allied himself with the late Holocaust denier and anti Semite Norberto Ceresole of Argentina (Ceresole adamantly denied the use of gas by the Nazis and insists that ‘no more than 40,000 died in Auschwitz). Chavez himself has embraced Ceresole’s ideas:

“…that is why I say that today more than ever and in 2005 years we need Jesus the Christ, because the world, the world, the daily world is ending, each day, the wealth of the world, because God, nature is wise, the world has sufficient water for all of us to have water, the world has sufficient wealth, sufficient land to produce food for all of the world population, the world has enough rocks and minerals for all of the constructions, so that nobody would be without a home. The world is for all of us, then, but it so happens that a minority, the descendants of the same ones that crucified Christ, the descendants of the same ones that kicked Bolivar out of here and also crucified him in their own way over there in Santa Marta, in Colombia. A minority has taken possesion all of the wealth of the world, a minority has taken ownership of all of the gold of the planet, of the silver, of the minerals, the waters, the good lands, oil, of the wealth then and have concentrated the wealth in a few hands: less than 10% of the population of the world owns more than half of the wealth of the world and …more than the population of the planet is poor and each day there are more poor people in the whole world. We are decided, decided to change history and each day we are accompanied and will be accompanied by more Chiefs of state..

Chavez’s loving relationship with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, given the Iranian leader’s overt anti Semitism, is to be expected. While there are those who might argue that Ahmadinejad’s obsession is with the Holocaust and not Jews, that argument can be easily dispensed with. Ahmadinejad’s embrace of David Duke, former Klan Grand Wizard, speaks volumes and underscores and reveals an absolute truth. All bigots want to be perceived as mainstream and reasonable, and will say just about anything that might mitigate their bigotry. In the end however, their visceral hate and bigotry reveal them.

We noted, in distinguishing between Western democracies and fascist-like states like Iran and Venezuela

Great nations are defined by their sense of purpose. America is about freedom. This great experiment in democracy has served as a blueprint for nations in search of the same. The influence America has had on democracy is evident in all the free nations of the world. Americans may be critical at times of their governments, but they all cherish their freedom. While it is true that there are those who believe that freedom- and the vote- should only be available to those who agree with them, thankfully, they are only a fringe minority. There are still others who believe we should abandon democratic allies and instead, support terrorist and avowed racist regimes. They are an even smaller, fringe minority.

Great nations are also defined by what they stand for. Great nations will not allow political correctness or ideologies that have been watered down, to mar the principles on which they stand.

No great nation has ever sustained itself by highlighting the ideologies or nations they hate. Only small, pitiful and failure-states do that.

Finally, Tariq Ali, Pakistani born ‘intellectual’ is determined to blame ‘Colonialism,’ Empires and democracy for all the ills, failed economies, terrorists, religious fundamentalism and misogyny, everywhere. No one makes choices, no one is responsible for their own actions. The European and American white man are to blame for all the world’s problems. Read Imperialism? Colonialism? Oh Really? and Ignorance, Deceit And The Petri Dish Of Failure for a less obscured vision of reality.

TariqAli praises unrepentant bigots like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Ismail Haniyah, Muqtada al-Sadr and Hassan Nasrallah (most of whom cannot be bothered to hide their racism and bigotry) as real magnificent heroes, not unlike his deferential treatment of Castro:

“I think that the Cuban Revolution has made incredibly important gains—and you can see these when you go, despite the hardships.”

Why would anyone be bothered with Castro’s record of oppression, poverty and murderous record over decades? As for the Cuba’s much vaunted ‘health care,’ even that has proved to be a sham. See Fausta, here and here for more on Cuba’s ‘progressive’ reality.

In Clash of Fundamentalisms, Tariq Ali works himself into a frenzy in attempting to portray Osama bin Laden and George Bush as moral equals. Naturally, he implies a certain darkness:

“[T]here exists no exact, incontrovertible evidence about who ordered the hits on New York and Washington or when the plan was first mooted..”

A few paragraphs earlier, Ali says with definitiveness that on 9/11 the “subjects of the Empire had struck back.”

Naturally, Ann el Khoury and like minded bigots and apes in tuxedos can hardly wait to bring together the dysfunctional racist bigots of Latin America with the dysfunctional racist bigots of the Middle East.

Tariq Ali addressed a Sydney Ideas audience this week, with a lecture on lessons for the Middle East from Latin America, entitled Latin America and the Arab World: Resistance and Occupation. While one region serves to some degree as a good model of regional autonomy and has broken away from becoming a laboratory of neoliberalism, the other is struggling less successfully, so far, against the designs of neoconservatism.

Look to el Khoury to defend the racists, bigots and fascists of both South America and the Middle East- and to defend anyone who sides with them. As we have noted, Ann el Khoury opining on the Middle East is like a whore opining on family values.

Dance, Ann, dance. Show us that intellectual faux trot you do so well.

Palestinian Insight

June 28, 2007

From MEMRI:

On June 17, 2007, renowned Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish published his reflections on the internecine fighting in Gaza in the London daily Al-Hayat. Darwish is known both for his literary output and for his political activism; he was a member of the PLO Central Committee from 1987 until 1993, when he resigned in protest of the Oslo Accords.

The following are excerpts:(1)

“Did we have to fall from towering heights and see our blood on our hands, in order to grasp that we are not angels, as we used to believe? Did we also have to expose all our faults before everybody, so that our true nature should not remain virginal? How much did we lie when we said: ‘We are an exception.’ That you believe yourself is worse than to lie to another. To be friendly with those who hate us and cruel to those who love us – that is the baseness of one who aggrandizes himself and the arrogance of the lowly.

“Oh Past: Do not change us as we get farther from you. Oh Future: Do not ask us: ‘Who are you? And what do you expect from me?’ Because we too do not know. Oh Present: We have borne little, for we are but insufferable passers-by.

“Identity is that which we bequeath, and not that which is bequeathed us. What we invent and not what we recollect. Identity is the false mirror, which we should break whenever the image pleases us.

“He wore a mask, took courage, and murdered his mother, because she was an easy prey for him, and because a woman soldier stopped him and exposed her breasts to him, saying: ‘Does your mother have such as these?’

“Were it not for shame and darkness, I would visit Gaza, without knowing the way to the house of the new Abu Sufyan, nor the name of the new prophet. And had not Muhammad been the Seal of the Prophets, each tribe would have had a prophet, and each Companion would have had a militia.

“June has astounded us on its fortieth anniversary. If we do not find one to defeat us again, we defeat ourselves with our own hands, lest we forget.

“No matter how much you look into my eyes, you would not find my sight there. Disgrace has snatched it away. My heart does not belong to me, nor to another. It has come to do without me, [but] without becoming a stone.

“Does he who cries over the corpse of his brother ‘Allahu Akbar’ – does he know that he is an infidel, because he sees Allah in his own image, smaller than a normal human being? The prisoner who aspires to inherit the prison concealed a smile of victory from the camera, but he did not succeed in suppressing the joy which spilled out of his eyes. Perhaps because the hasty text was more powerful than the actor. What do we need Narcissus for, so long as we are Palestinians, and so long as we do not know the difference between a mosque (jami‘) and a university (jami’a), because they both come from the same root. What do we need a state for, as long as it and [the passing] days have the same destiny?

“A sign on the door of a nightclub: Welcome Palestinians returning from battle. Entrance is free, and our wine does not intoxicate…

“‘Me and the stranger against my cousin; me and my cousin against my brother; and me and my sheikh against myself.’(2) This is lesson number one in the new national education under the vaults of obscurity.

“Who will enter Paradise first? He who died by the bullets of the enemy, or he who died by the bullets of a brother? Some sages say: Sometimes your enemy is one born of your own mother.

“The fundamentalists do not make me angry, for they are believers in their own way. But I am angered by their secular supporters and by their atheist supporters who believe but in one religion – their own pictures on television.

“Someone asked me: Will a hungry guard defend a house whose owner traveled to spend his summer vacation on the French or Italian Riveria – whichever one of them. I said: He will not guard. He asked me: Does me + me = two? I said: You and you is less than one.

“I am not ashamed of my identity, because it is still [a work] in progress. I am, however, ashamed of some of the things mentioned in Ibn Khaldun’s Prolegomena.(3)

“You are, from now on, another.”

*Note: the following post was written jointly by Dr. Sanity and Sigmund, Carl and Alfred and is cross-posted.

Classical Marxist socialism predicted that because of the exploitative nature of capitalism and the oppression of the workers (proletariat) by the capitalists (bourgeoisie) that the masses of the “exploited” would become revolutionaries and sweep the evil capitalists out of power, instituting a “workers’ paradise.”

Sadly for them, the places where this process was helpfully encouraged in the last century by actual violent revolutions–such as in the Soviet Union and Cuba–the “workers’ paradise” thus created turned out to be more of a workers’ hell on earth. Nevertheless, indoctrinated little socialists and communists elsewhere–such as in the U.S, where unimaginable wealth was apparently being created off the backs of the poor proletariat.– waited hopefully for the oppressed workers to join the revolutionary wave.

Much to their surprise and dismay, the clever capitalist system was actually co-opting the oppressed workers, and helping them enter the dreaded “middle class”.

Marx always expected that the middle class–which he described as composed of the small manufacturer, the shopkeeper, the artisan, the peasant etc–would own some property, but not sufficient to have all work done by employees or workers. Those in the middle class must also work in order to survive and are thus simultaneously members of Marx’s proletariat as well as his bourgeoisie. He expected that the middle class would disappear as capitalism developed, since the only sustainable positions were the ones of his dialectic.

This, however, is not what actually happens in the real world as it turns out.

Whenever the workers are given liberty and allowed to pursue their own happiness (and not the state’s), the middle class has continued to expand. In fact, the values of this particular economic group have come to anchor society in the United States. Far from wanting to ignite a worker’s revolution as Marx predicted, they enjoy the creature comforts of the capitalist system and feel themselves empowered by it. Worse (from the communist/socialist’s perspective anyway), the typical person in the middle class believes that he or she can better themselves by using the many opportunities offered by a liberal, capitalistic democracy.

Even in Communist China, capitalistic pursuits and entrepreneurship have become the true “opiates” of the masses–in the sense that to the degree people are free to pursue their own happiness and work for their own interests–i.e., where they have economic freedom, even if they don’t have political freedom– they are relatively content, and are unlikely to fulfill the ardent communist/socialist’s revolutionary fantasies.

Let’s switch gears now and look at the scenario that has been playing out in the Middle East for the last half century or more. The Palestinian-Israeli conflict has all the trappings of a perfect Marxist drama: the oppressed and poverty-stricken proletariat who have been dispossessed from the land that should be rightfully theirs; and the evil, oppressive and exploitative Jew.

There is only one way that the Israelis could have achieved a country of plenty in the midst of the arid and empty desert –and that must be by exploitation, oppression and abuse of the Palestinians. I mean, just look at what Israel has been able to accomplish since its founding! Not only have they managed to create a country that exemplifies western values, but their people are prosperous, industrious, educated, and contribute to the advancement of humanity in every way. And, they managed to do all this in only a few decades; while their Arab counterparts (including the Palestinians) have not been able to create much of anything over hundreds of years. In fact, if it wasn’t for the discovery of oil in the Middle East, there would not be any wealth at all to sustain most of the countries surrounding Israel.

As this Marxist play continues act after repetitive act, highlighting the dialectic of oppressor versus oppressed, we can begin to understand why the political left have supported the Palestinian and Arab cause against Israel; and why jihad and shar’ia have become the preferred “revolt of the masses”.

It was no coincidence that the Al Aqsa intifada was unleashed when it was.

Whoever thinks that the Intifadah broke out because of the despised Sharon’s visit to the Al-Aqsa Mosque, is wrong,” Imad al-Faluji, the Palestinian communications minister, declared in March. “This Intifadah was planned in advance, ever since President Arafat’s return from the Camp David negotiations.

The Camp David negotiations that might possibly have lead to a real peace accord between the Palestinians and the Israelis was the doomsday scenario feared by every faction of the corrupt Palestinian regime and even Palestinian opposition parties (who wanted their turn at the trough). Why? Because peace with Israel meant the Palestinian psychological dynamic would change for good.

When nations that are that are led by or are under the influence of tyrants or dictators, attempt to justify their actions, we can rightly assume that justification is false. Tyrants and dictators do not make moral choices, because moral choices can only lead to the demise of the tyranny.

Peace with Israel would highlight a few realities that the Arab world leadership does not want to face. Overnight, the Palestinians would have the most successful Arab world per capita economy. The Palestinian standard of living would be unparalleled in the Arab world. That economy would grow as foreign investment would flood the region, pouring into already established, but dormant free-trade zones with Israel and themselves. This is no small matter- free trade is is the truest expression of peaceful relations. Countries and regions at peace manage to put aside the differences they have and instead, focus on the things that unite them so that trade and the resulting growth and wealth, remain facilitated.

Wars are not good for free trade. Notwithstanding the ‘military industrial complex’ (who make far more money in peaceful times than they do during war), the generations of free trade of goods and services provide far more money, income and benefits to society at large and demonstrably raise the standard of living for those nations.

Wars interrupt growth and the process of wealth creation. For the Palestinians, peace with Israel would mean the emergence of a middle class; and a middle class is necessary for all healthy and civilized societies.

For the Palestinians, a healthy middle class means that their focus would be redirected away from the dysfunctional values that promote an endless conflict, to those that promote growth and opportunity for its citizens. In a healthy Palestinian society, parents would want their children to go to school and use the tools of education to build a life and a future filed with possibilities. In the current unhealthy society, parents take pride in sending their children to schools where they are taught to hate. Those parents beam with pride as they hear their children commit themselves to kill and destroy; and are rewarded by the society at large when their children blow themselves up.

Nations with a healthy middle class have some other things in common, something that makes both Hamas and Fatah as they vie with each other for power, tremble in a common fear: a successful middle class demands that government answer to them, and not the other way around. Democracies are not developed or sustained by the political extremes- they are the trust and legacy of a vibrant, functioning middle class.

A healthy middle class can be defined in many ways, but in the end, it is human nature that dictates reality. If an individual desires to achieve and succeed are recognized and rewarded by the society, then that society will be a healthy society.

In the most successful societies there is a large middle class, and anyone has the potential to succeed if they have a good idea, commitment to work and plenty of drive. America, Canada, the UK, Australia and Israel are all examples of societies that while very different, are very successful. As the barrier to entry into the middle class becomes more onerous and difficult, requiring expensive and hard to obtain permits and licenses; societies are less successful and become progressively more likely to fail. The nations of the Arab world is a good example of that. There is no middle class in most of the middle east; only an elite, plundering class who are the beneficiaries of the oil wealth the land is blessed with; and a lower class, condemned by the elites to poverty, ignorance and oppression.

When there are few barriers to entering the free market, then the middle class can thrive; and the more successful the entrepreneurs and community becomes, the greater the stake the people have in maintaining peace and prosperity. Thus, it is far more likely that the society will refrain from making war upon it’s neighbors except to defend itself. A prosperous and free middle class, engaging in free trade and pursuing their own lives, liberty and happiness is the ultimate expression of commitment to peace.

The Palestinians live right next door to a very successful society–certainly the most successful and free society in the entire middle east. Israelis know and understand the value of higher education. They know and understand the value of a healthy and free press. A peace treaty with Israel would be the first step to a Palestinian middle class. Within one generation, Palestinians working in economic partnership with Israel would find unheard of economic empowerment.

A peace treaty with Israel would mean that the Palestinians would dictate their own future. A peace treaty with Israel would level the playing field and thus offer each and every Palestinian the opportunity to succeed, and not be subject to failure before they even began. Success is not always easy and success is never guaranteed; but even with failure, a middle class mindset sees new, open doors and possibilities.

It is no coincidence that the Israelis have for years, attempted to facilitate the emergence of a Palestinian middle class. It is also just as clear that successive Palestinian regimes, political leaders and religious authorities have done everything they could to thwart those plans. When Israel pulled out of Gaza, they attempted to leave the structures–apartment buildings and greenhouses and such that might raise the standard of living for the Palestinians who moved in. The results of this generosity can be seen to the right.

It is in the interest of both Palestinian and Arab leaders to blame the failures and poverty of Palestinian society on Israel. In this, they are simply acting out the middle eastern variation of the Marxist drama by claiming that they have been “oppressed” by the very existence of Israel and cashing in on their victimhood. Thus an empowered middle class with a stake in peace and a desire for prosperity and commerce is the last thing the tyrants and terrorists of the middle east would want to emerge from the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. A middle class demands accountability. A middle class demands responsible government and a middle class demands opportunity. Thus, the Palestinians are forever doomed to exist in poverty and misery (whether in the primitive “camps” in Gaza; or Lebanon or anywhere in the ME) as an everlasting testament to Israeli and Western “oppression.”

The Palestinian political, cultural and religious leadership in both Hamas and Fatah are united in one area: they are afraid they will rightly be held accountable for the poverty, misery, havoc and destruction they have wrought for the last half century; and for the dark curtain they have drawn around the Arab world. It is the Arab world that has kept generations of Palestinians impoverished and without hope.

Redemption for Palestinians will come about as the result of peace with Israel and the establishment of healthy and vibrant middle class, with middle class sensibilities and values. The hate, bigotry and racism of Islamist extremists will have the potential of finally being replaced with openness and the same commitment to equality and fairness so valued by the middle class of healthy societies worldwide.

For over six decades, the racism and bigotry of the Arab world has been rejected by the middle class of civilized societies. That is something the Palestinians need to think about.

Marx believed that the capitalist system would ignite a worker’s revolution, but the reality is that those workers began to enjoy the creature comforts of the capitalist system and felt themselves empowered by it. As stated earlier, the worse aspect of this reality–from the communist/socialist’s perspective anyway–is that the typical person in the middle class believes that he or she can better themselves by using the many opportunities offered by a liberal, capitalistic democracy. The middle eastern variant of the Marxist dialectic holds that Palestinians–indeed, all Muslims–are oppressed by the decadence of Western/Christian/Jewish capitalism and democracy and that the only way to get rid of this oppression is through jihad. Thus the elites are invested in encouraging jihad and endless war as they live off the oil profits and bask in their own corruption; while the Arab (especially the Palestinian) proletariat can only look forward to blowing themselves up for Allah as the highest achievement they can aspire to. The pursuit of their own happiness or working for their own interests is simply not an option.

From infancy on, the individual is taught to believe that he or she belongs to the Islamic state and exists solely to fulfill that state’s religious revolutionary fantasies. But in reality, those in power are nothing more than the petty bourgeois Marxists whose sole concern is in maintaining their power over others and enriching themselves along the way. Without a chance to pursue their own happiness, there will never be a Palestinian middle class who will have a stake in peace with Israel; and neither will they ever have a stake in peaceful coexistence with any other successful culture or society.

A year ago, two spectacular events crossed our horizons at the same time. Firstly, Warren Buffet made the decision to make the largest charitable donation in history- 37 billion dollars, to be used for the good of as many people as possible. Also this week, the Palestinians made the decision to take that final step into the abyss of complete detachment and dysfunctionality as they escalated their confrontation with Israel.

The two events are closely related.

Warren Buffet’s decision will be remembered for a having changed the values of a nation. Sure, Americans have been generous- more generous as a nation than any other nation in history- but the extent of Mr Buffets action will have tremendous repercussions , because Mr Buffet has changed the way rich people ‘do business.’ The actions of the ‘Oracle from Omaha’ will have an impact on the actions and attitudes of future generations. To those that might argue (wrongly) that it is only American economic interests are the reason for our generosity, it bears remembering and noting that unlike European monarchies and empires, our foreign aid and nation building included enormous investments in education, health-care and infrastructure.

Mr Buffet’s actions have reversed the course of history. In the past, great fortunes of money accumulated were used to build empires, wage wars and gain power and influence. Sure, money was left to charity, but that was a side matter, a few pennies thrown out to satisfy an ego and social standing. Mr Buffet’s money will not be used to further economic conquer or to fund monuments to his greatness.

It also bears remembering that when great wealth is gained through aggressive or criminal activity, that money is usually used to perpetuate that crime and corruption. Those who have earned money by way of crime and corruption will rarely use that money to serve a common good.

When the accumulation and distribution of wealth and power are driven by self serving and short term needs and agendas, it is inevitable that those needs and agendas will be pushed aside by the next dominant group or individual. The cycle is continuous.

The fabulous wealth of Greek and Roman Empires has been lost. The wealth of the Incas and the Ottomans has disappeared. Each conqueror confiscated the wealth of the vanquished- and the wealth of each empire now, is barely remembered.

Warren Buffet’s material fortune will have a direct bearing and influence on generations not yet born. His money will not be used for political purposes or to further control of any ideologies or agendas (contrast Warren Buffet with George Soros!), but rather, his money will be used in the furtherance of life and opportunity.

We are witnessing a shift in history, culture, and sociology of man, in one fell swoop. We are witnessing the elevation and highest potential of man. Whereas yesterday, the most powerful men were takers, today, they are givers.

Contrast these higher ideals with the ideals of the Palestinians.

As this is being written, the Palestinians are demanding the release of 1,000 prisoners in exchange for an kidnapped Israeli soldier. Why? Because they know that the Israelis value and cherish each life- not for the sake of life, but for the sake of the potential of each life.

The Palestinians and many Muslims mistakenly believe that the Judeo-Christian ethic loves life itself. This is a fatal error. We love life, not for the sake of living, but rather, for the potential of each of our lives reflects. The Holocaust is not only remembered for that period of slaughter, but also for the Holocaust that was inflicted on all of mankind. How many potential Nobel Prize winners were killed or weren’t born? How many diseases might have been eradicated through the research of scientists that were ‘experimented’ upon? How many more wonders and miracles might we have seen, had generations of children been allowed to have been conceived? Might hunger and famine have been eliminated?

Nevertheless, the Palestinians proudly proclaim they have fired chemical weapons into Israel (see Dr Sanity’s cold observations). As one culture elevates itself, another culture descends. Whether or not the claim is true, is irrelevant. That the Palestinians would claim Hitler’s legacy is yet another example of a failed and corrupt society. The Palestinians and their supporters claim a high morality, even as the publicly embrace an evil rejected by civilized societies and cultures.

As tens of thousands of Chinese in Hong Kong march for democracy, tens of thousands of Palestinians and their supporters marched in defence of a regime that espouses hate, bigotry and promises death.

While the Palestinians would have you believe they wanted peace, their actions say otherwise.

If the Palestinians and much of the Arab world wanted peace, they would teach tolerance and peace in their schools, not racism, hate and death.

If the Palestinians wanted peace, there would be no training camps for ‘militants’ teaching children how to kill, for the Israelis to bomb. If the Palestinians wanted peace, there would be no arms factories and development of chemical weapons.

There would be no concerted effort to glorify death. The Palestinians and much of the Arab world espouse death because they have been robbed of a future and potential by their own leadership and a religion that has been bastardized to serve and enrich the needs of a few. As long as the current regimes and attitudes will remain a reality in the Arab world, there will be no potential and no promise of a future. As long as western Muslim communities live in that same dysfunctional mindset and support the regimes and corruption that have served to denigrate and demean entire populations, those communities will never be a part of a western mainstream. See this as an example of that kind of disconnect (h/t Dust My Broom. See Darcey’s post here).

The Israelis will no longer allow themselves to descend to the level of the Palestinians.

If the Hamas government rejects them, they have every right- and many would argue, an obligation, to reject the Hamas government. If the Hamas government rejects past accords signed on behalf of the Palestinians with the Israelis, they have every right to reject members of that kind of government.

If the Hamas government makes clear that their intention is to eliminate Israel, they have made their choice clear. Had Hitler’s cabinet and high government officials been captured and taken prisoner, there would be no clamor for them to be released. In fact, they probably would have been justifiably executed. Just as Hitler was an obvious target marked for death by the civilized world, so too has Israel the right to mark Ismael Haniyeh to that same fate. That the Arab world sees fit to associate themselves with Hamas and all that Nazi like political entity stands for, speaks volumes.

We have written about some of the more visible differences between Israel and her detractors, here. Those differences are clear and unambiguous. That difference is as clear as the difference between philanthropists like Bill Gates and Warren Buffet, and despots like the Saud and Assad families and the ‘clerics’ and leaders of Hamas and Hizbollah.

The Israelis- and all civilized nations- are not obligated to descend into the Palestinian abyss and deal with Palestinian and Arab world dysfunction. Now that the Hamas government has made clear to all what the Israelis have known for years (the Hamas clean and unapologetic anti Semitism) , those supporting the Palestinians are now taking a new tack- they no longer talk about the political aspirations in term of the ‘will of the people.’ Now, they talk in terms of an ‘oppressed and psychologically traumatized people’- as if trauma were the cause of their hate.

The Israelis, we are told, are victims of hate because they have victimized the Palestinians- who, with their Arab world bretheren, have declared open season on Jews long before the state of Israel existed.

Now, Palestinians have become children, in need of our protection. Well, consider this: Why are the Palestinians more emotionally wounded than the victims of Chechnya, Darfur or Rwanda? How come the Lebanese and Jordanians, who suffered far more horrendous suffering than the 3,000 deaths of the current Palestine intifadah, weren’t immobilized and driven into incessant conflict? Hafez Assad had ten to twenty five thousand butchered in Hama in one week- and yet Syria did not implode.

If the legions of sympathetic therapists rushing in to help the Palestinians ‘cope’ are to be believed and prove anything, it is that the Palestinian level of dysfunctionality is something the Israelis should not have to deal with. In any event, Palestinian trauma is not severe enough from keeping the Palestinians from having an infrastructure of hate in the media, schools and from religious pulpits. Nor is the level of psychological trauma enough from keeping the Palestinians from having a network of terror training camps,sophisticated weapons procurement programs and of of course, a chemical weapon program.

In the meantime, the UN is taking Israel to task:

Egypt, Iran, Jordan, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and Syria were among the resolution’s sponsors. Western countries, including Britain, Canada, France, Germany, and Japan, voted against it.

Look at some of the countries voting for the motion- and then look at some of those voting against.

How many Warren Buffets do you think will come out of Egypt, Iran, Jordan, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and Syria?

From the SC&A archives

Today, the President of the United States will deliver a speech at the Washington Islamic Center, home to the American branch of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Dymphna, co author of Gates of Vienna, has written an important open letter to the President. The letter is eloquent, heartfelt and most apropos.

Dymphna’s passion can best be understood in the proper context. Below is some relevant clarity and information with regard to the Muslim Brotherhood.

Muslim Brotherhood Children’s Website: “America Aspires to Control the Muslim World & Our Role is to Prepare Ourselves for Jihad Against the Enemies of Allah; Murdering Children is Part of Judaism…”

Outside the Middle East, the Brotherhood has expanded its operations to the United States. Muslim activists affiliated with the Brotherhood have founded the Muslim Students’ Association, the North American Islamic Trust, the Islamic Society of North America, the American Muslim Council, and the International Institute of Islamic Thought. The Brotherhood also reportedly exercises a strong influence in Muslim communities throughout Europe.

In recent years, the Brotherhood has attempted to forge a reputation as a moderate and reformist Islamic group that has renounced its violent past. Lending plausibility to this reputation has been criticism of the organization by radical Islamist groups, who have condemned the Brotherhood’s willingness to participate in the political process as heretical. These groups have also criticized the Brotherhood for supposedly abandoning violent struggle as a means of establishing an Islamic empire.

However, numerous statements by the Brotherhood’s leadership belie its moderate posture. Ali Sadreddine Bayanouni, the leader of the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood, has repeatedly disavowed violence while concurrently pledging his support for the terrorism of Hamas and Hezbollah. Muhammad Mahdi Othman Akef, a prominent leader of the Brotherhood, has expressed his support for suicide bombings in Israel and Iraq…

Many other leaders of the Brotherhood have likewise justified terrorism against Israel and the United States, with many defending the September 11 terrorist attacks against America. Jews are another common object of the Brotherhood’s hatred. Of the Jewish people, Sheik Yousef Al-Qaradhawi, the spiritual leader of the Brotherhood, has written: “There is no dialogue between them and us other than in one language — the language of the sword and force.”

Here’s how the story began. In the 1920s there was a young Egyptian named al Bana. And al Bana formed this nationalist group called the Muslim Brotherhood. Al Bana was a devout admirer of Adolph Hitler and wrote to him frequently. So persistent was he in his admiration of the new Nazi Party that in the 1930s, al-Bana and the Muslim Brotherhood became a secret arm of Nazi intelligence.

The Arab Nazis had much in common with the new Nazi doctrines. They hated Jews; they hated democracy; and they hated the Western culture. It became the official policy of the Third Reich to secretly develop the Muslim Brotherhood as the fifth Parliament, an army inside Egypt.

When war broke out, the Muslim Brotherhood promised in writing that they would rise up and help General Rommell and make sure that no English or American soldier was left alive in Cairo or Alexandria.

The October 1980 children’s supplement to the Brotherhood newspaper Al Dawa, for
example, was designed to instruct young children on “the enemies of your religion”: “Such are the Jews, my brother, Muslim lion cub, your enemies and the enemies of God. …Muslim lion cub, annihilate their existence.”

It matters little that the Muslim Brotherhood will from time to time, sound conciliatory and even rational.

Ask yourself a question: Who is more likely to deceive and speak out of both sides of his mouth? Would a decent man want to be perceived as a bigot, or would a bigot want to be perceived as a decent person? The answer is clear.

The Muslim Brotherhood are in the end, just another group of apes in tuxedos.

With the release of Paris Hilton from jail, media coverage of the event made it painfully clear that we  are a nation obsessed celebrity and entertainment. The coverage isn’t about Ms Hilton and her accomplishments (she has no discernible talents or achievements that would distinguish her from a lab rat). Rather, the media frenzy (and our own obsession at staring at the car wreck of her life) is directed at her shamelessness. This is a woman who made a sex tape, took advantage of the situation without shame or embarrassment and revels in the notoriety. Her parents, co conspirators in this farce, have enabled their daughters dysfunction. They too, have no shame and they too, bask in the sunlight reflected off their daughter’s celebrity.  Paris is an individual, they say. Paris is special, they say, Paris has so many wonderful qualities, they say. All that may be true, but is just as true and even more evident that also Paris Hilton is a slut and it is also true that her parents have enabled her. Paris Hilton is a very young Leona Helmsley.

The artist’s ‘self expression’ in art, that much worshiped testimony to self absorption, has found it’s equivalent in popular culture: Individualism, even in failure and dysfunction is now celebrated ‘self expression’

There is now a justification of a sacred belief that each of us carries within us, by virtue of our very existence, not only something unique, but something that must be shared with and recognized- and accepted and appreciated-  by, the world. If it isn’t shared (or forced) upon the world, that most precious gift might be lost forever. It matter little if we contribute, share or better the world around us. Nowadays, our very existence is what matters, and not our behavior or contributions. Paris Hilton is of equal merit to the world as Albert Schweitzer or Mother Teresa.

Mamacita, of Weekly Scheiss, once remarked that kids today believe that it is their right to celebrity (To understand where she is coming from, read this). Somehow, this romantic notion has become more and more the norm. There isn’t one kid who doesn’t believe that if they could be bothered to stand in line, they would walk away the winner of some version of American Idol, hands down.

Of course, most of us do not have anything worthy of foisting upon mankind. Shakespeare will not lose influence because some our poems were not published, Mozart will not be usurped because pimply faced kids can lip synch rappers and play air guitar. Those aspiring to emulate Gene Simmons (Kiss) or Jerry Garcia by making noise, will not have the equivalent impact of of Albert Einstein’s Theory of Relativity on mankind  no matter how much they believe they  are deserving, by the simple virtue of their existence.

Those masses driven by the need to express themselves (read: force themselves upon others), irrespective of whether there really is anything worthwhile to express, has led to the rejection of the notion of actual contribution to society. Society and societal needs can be rejected because their need to self express trumps all. ‘Worship me because I exist. Celebrate me because I  demand the attention.’

The idea is a kind of perverse religious expression:

Because I profess faith on myself, good deeds and good works are irrelevant. It is irrelevant that I might be offensive to you. I believe that I have something to contribute to mankind- therefore, you must acquiesce to my greatness. I may contravene your conventionality. You must dare not contravene mine.

Often, this need to self express kind of drivel is actually foisted on kids by their parents.

Giving a child a traditional name, just won’t do. For many parents, it is de riguer to give their precious- and unique- offspring, unconventional and fashionable monikers (Moon Unit and Dweezil come to mind). It is a shame that the practice of naming one’s child after antecedents or relatives is being withered away. The connection to the past and ideals are being abandoned. There is the hope that naming a child ‘Running Yogurt’ will somehow instill a new and greater ideal, not by virtue of accomplishment but rather, by virtue of  existence. The narcissism drips- 

We parented this child- we  did. Therefore this child  is more special than any other child and there fore this child is exempt from the rules that govern society.’

Ask Mamacita about parents who demand that kids caught cheating be awarded Valedictory honors. Ask her about parents who demand their child not only be given a passing grade in subject matter they have not mastered, but be awarded Honors status. 

World leaders, too, are quite happy to be referred to in diminutive form- as if referring to Jimmy, Bill or Tony, for example, somehow makes them more ‘like us’ and thus more worthy of our support. There are those who like the idea of our leaders not setting an example, but rather being a part of the herd. Being a part of the herd means those leaders won’t ask us to exceed ourselves, to be better that think we can be. Being a part of the herd means we can be pedestrian and be happy about that. Being a part of the herd means we are in no need of heroes to look up and inspire us.

There is another school of thought that likes the idea of our leaders not being just like us. If nothing else, perhaps we ought to recognize that the office and mantle of leadership in a free society is worthy of profound respect, notwithstanding the temporary occupant. Those so honored with that temporary pass would  do well to lead by example when it comes to leading by example- especially when it comes to respect, selflessness and the commitment to ideals other than those that serve the self.

The tidal wave of narcissism, so carefully nurtured by the media, allows for and encourages other avenues of self expression for those not blessed with an unusual name.

Tattoos and body adornment are other forms of (some would say desperate) forms of self expression. Those who put miniature spears and other sharp pointed objects through various body parts want to believe that they too, are ‘self expressing.’ Of course, the reality is that the need to break from  conventionality is shared by millions and millions of others (and thus is not really all that an expression of individuality).  More often than not, that truth is lost on the well pierced. What is more important to these less than stellar thinkers is that the well pierced are the objects of attention- and that is the object of the game (not unlike car wrecks and the reptile exhibition at the zoo).

It is curious that more often than not, the well tattooed and pierced are of the middle class, attempting to express their solidarity with the poorer classes (most of whom would give their eye teeth to be a part of that middle class). Throughout that middle class, body art is a statement.

Our beliefs lack prejudice. We are in solidarity with everyman. Not only are tattoos for poor working class people- we will stand shoulder to shoulder with the poor- and by the way, check out my tattoos- pretty cool, huh?

(Note: We realize that not everyone who gets a tattoo does so for the reasons stated above.  We have now concluded our daily dose of obligatory PC)

That is what you have to say when you have nothing to say. It is not enough to be a contributing member of society, good and decent. Now, the priorities  are self perceived uniqueness. That alone is sufficient to be acknowledged as  recognized as great. Meaningful contributions or efforts are irrelevant and in fact, aren’t fair because after all, what if someone contributes more or works harder? They might be recognized as more important. How fair is that?

The cult of celebrity has fostered much of this- and indeed, it is the kind of celebrity that we worship that speaks much about who we are. Not enough of us want to be Albert Schweitzer, Louis Pasteur or Mother Teresa. That requires years of work, study and commitment. Too many of us want to be rock stars, actors and by virtue of decree, want to influence society.

Can you imagine the loss if we had worshiped actors instead of playwrights, centuries ago? We would not know Greek tragedies or Shakespeare. Can you imagine the kind of world we’d live in if Jonas Salk, Thomas Edison and Albert Einstein, for example, pursued fame rather than the burning passion to contribute to society?  They understood  that success is achieved as the result of failure. Every  scientific experiment  that led nowhere contributed to the  body of knowledge that eventually led to  the eradication of  disease and plague. Can you see Paris Hilton toiling away for decades, with no spotlight  and no recognition?

We know who Paris Hilton is and we know the Hollywood A, B and C lists. Do you know who won the Nobel prizes this year? Do you know who won the Congressional Medal of Honor and for what? Can you name the books that were awarded literary prizes?

We live in a world of mass communication, mass transit and mass self importance.

It is a pity we demand so little from ourselves and even less from our kids. Maybe, if  we’re lucky,  our daughters will make sex tapes and  we can cash in in the fame.

Parts of this post have been previously published.

Tasteless, tacky and crude is the best way to describe the video posted by the Baron, at Gates of Vienna.

The posted video is of a group of kids that burn an effigy of Mohammed.

The Baron is pointed, clear, and direct with a deliberate silence.

Will we see more summer riots? Will some kinds of free speech come under attack, while other kinds of free speech be given a free pass?

The Baron and Dymphna  say a whole lot without saying a whole lot. Impressive.

Wars end because of disproportionate responses. If wars were fought on a ‘tit for tat’ basis, they would last indefinitely.

After September 11, 2001, the decision was made to go into Afghanistan and rid that nation of the beasts that claimed that country as their own. Lots of people died and there has not yet been an attack of consequence on our shores. Afghanistan is no longer stoning women in soccer stadiums, girls are now going to school and the Taliban’s Mullah Omar (who made sure his animals, but not his people has potable water) and Osama bin Laden are hiding in caves bereft of indoor plumbing. All in all, a good thing.

In the event the Iranians or any of their proxies (Syria, Hizbollah, Hamas, et al) manage to mount an attack that kills innocents, the appropriate response is as follows: attack the sponsor of the attacks and/or the regime where the attack originated and inflict as much damage as possible.

Will many innocents die? Yes, they will.

The moment the first innocent dies in a war, that war becomes immoral. Civilized societies understand that all wars are immoral. That does not mean the war is unjust. Uncivilized societies do not understand that war is immoral. In the case of much of the Islamic and  Arab world, not only is war that targets innocents politically moral, it is also a religious expression.

Dr Sanity, in The Brilliance Of The New Barbarians, quotes Wretchard:

The brilliance of the new barbarism is that you cannot fight it without destroying your own value system into the bargain.

Traditionally the solution has been to consider wartime a discontinuity, when civilization’s rules are suspended. It becomes possible, for example, to lay waste to the Monte Cassino Abbey. Berlin was bombed without regard for its buildings, churches or people.

The alternative is to create methods of fighting so discriminating that we can literally shoot between the raindrops. But that creates a different problem, for we will need an intelligence system so comprehensive that it will become intrusive.

Either way, the war cannot be won without cost. And the fundamental fraud foisted on the public is to claim we can have war without horror, conduct an intelligence war without dishonesty and cunning and obtain victory without sacrifice.

Dr Sanity, in her own words:

The cost of this war will be more than all the lives lost; it will also be for the humanity and civilization we must temporarily abandon to win. I love to read fantasies as much as anyone, but in the real world, the good and virtuous whose cause is just do not always win.

When we are finally cornered and must allow our own barbarism to surface to combat theirs head to head, then we must be prepared to live with the consequences, including the agonizing guilt that will ensue–or everything we hold dear, everything we aspire to become, will forever perish from this earth.

I’ve said it before, but this reality is what I hate and despise most about these Islamic fanatics–who do not let reason or life interfere with their jihad; who abide by no treaties, follow no rules, and scorn the very values upon which western civilization is founded. We could have lived with them they did not insist that we must become what they are or die. But they have defined the groundrules (or the non-rules) of this conflict; and eventually, we will have to meet them at their level–or they will win. We should hold tight to the thought that it is they who have set the playing field.

As Wretchard notes, wars are fought as wars, not as tea parties. Innocents die, great cities are laid to waste and vast populations suffer for years. Bad things happen, and in the heat of battle, barbarism will occur. That is all part of the cost of war.

If most people had their say, there would be no aggressive wars. They after all, are the ones who suffer the most. The leaders of nations and faiths that demand war, aren’t usually made to pay the price till long after most if the damage has been done- if ever.
The problem is that most people don’t have a say. Nations and leaders that demand aggressive wars are not free nations. They are ruthless tyrannies that exist only to serve themselves and their needs. They do so by institutionalizing bigotry, hate and racism.
When nations that are that are led by or are under the influence of tyrants or dictators, attempt to justify those actions, we can rightly assume that justification is false. Tyrants and dictators do not make moral choices, because moral choices can only lead to the demise of the tyranny.

Anyone that comes to the defense of tyrannical regimes and their leaders, have themselves made a conscious choice to defend and stand by what is immoral.

It really is that simple.

The problems in the Middle East are not derivative of Israel’s existence, notwithstanding the deceit that would have you believe that.

American troops would have been invited to the region by Kings, Princes and Sheikhs, regardless. Those invitations had nothing to do with Israel.

Saddam would have invaded Iraq and the Egyptians would have used chemical weapons in Yemen. Hafez Al Assad would have butchered 15,000 to 30,000 in Hama, irrespective of American policies .

Israel’s fight with Hizbollah and Hamas is not political and never was. Hizbollah and Hamas see the conflict with Israel as an existential, having nothing to do with politics or borders.

Nasrallah, Fadlalah, Haniyah, et al, have made clear that the existence of Israel, with any borders, cannot be tolerated. They do not make even the slightest effort to hide their respective agendas. Nasrallah, openly expressed his delight that there are so many Jews in the land he wants to eliminate. In speaking of his murderous intentions, he is deliberate- ‘It will save us the trouble of rounding them up.’

Clearly, as far as Hizbollah and Hamas are concerned, violence in the region is not predicated in political differences. The violent elimination of Israel remains a clear and unequivocally stated goal. In their world, Israel is simply not permitted to exist.

Much, if not most of the Arab world share those beliefs. They have thrown down the gauntlet, by refusing to recognize the Jewish state. They have issued the challenge.

The very real threat of a disproportionate response underscores the truth that calls to ‘Slaughter the Jew!’ or ‘Slaughter the American!’ are not considered acceptable forms of political or religious expression by the civilized world.

The rules of civilizations are far more preferable to war. Those rules however, are applicable to those who understand that war is preferable to peace. For over 60 years, we have been ‘talking’ and ‘discussing’ with regimes that would harm our interests at at moment notice, and regimes who openly admit that if given the opportunity, would eliminate Israel, America and for that matter, the western world that doesn’t share the ‘values’ that celebrate misogyny and the subjugation a of women, the slaughter and oppression of some non Muslims, including Jews, gays, apostates and others.

That is no exaggeration. In 2002, Saudi Arabia’s ‘religious’ police prevented schoolgirls from escaping a burning school building because they weren’t wearing ‘appropriate’ religious garb. Do regimes such as these really understand civilized behavior? 

For sixty years, the American position on Israel and the Arab nations in the Middle East under every administration since Truman has been remarkably consistent. Irrespective of the Republican or Democrat occupants of the White House, American policy has been remarkably consistent and clear: Cessation of hostilities, diplomatic recognition and secure borders.

After 60 years, those things have yet to be fully accepted by the Arab world.

Imagine negotiating with the Nazi Party for 60 years, during which time it engaged in a limited- but relentless terror and war- as well as their stated genocidal aims.

From Der Speigel, in response to the war with Hizbollah:

The pacifist reaction that the Israeli defensive war has triggered in Germany and Europe is not well thought out and is disingenuous. It is also counter-productive. An immediate cease-fire would merely result in a worse conflict in the future. The consequences drawn from Adolf Hitler’s World War II — “Never again fascism! Never again war!” — were intended to prevent an anti-Semitic war from ever again taking place. Today, that lesson has been forgotten. “Never again war against fascism” is all that remains.

Israel must not be forced to abandon its war against Hezbollah, rather it must win the conflict. Just as Hezbollah is fighting the war as Iran’s proxy, Israel is fighting genocidal Islamism as the proxy for the rest of the Western world. The least Israel should be able to expect from the West is that it not be betrayed.

There is a cost to war and to abrogating the the rules of civilization. Sooner or later, the disproportionate response to wild and frenzied calls of ‘We will finish what Hitler started’  will be paid, once and for all.

The final cost will be determined by the Arab world. Whatever the cost is, they will have no one but themselves to blame.

The Bigot Bounces Back

June 25, 2007

It seems like Ann el Khoury, Phd candidate, wants another beating. The author People’s Geography, has replied to a comment we left (surprisingly, after she refused to post earlier responses to her efforts) in response to yet more drivel posing as ‘considered thought.’

The scope and breadth and her deceit is wide. El Khoury is unhappy with the way we treated some other bigots and frauds that are among the great poseurs of our time. In fact, Ms el Khoury ought to be pleased she is a part of such a distinguished group of recognized frauds.

We urge you to read each of the posts Ms el Khoury refers to (we have changed the links to reflect our WordPress blog posts, for technical reasons).

For example, the case of Robert Fisk is instructive. The ‘highly regarded’ Fisk, was so unaware of reality that he actually published an ‘analysis’ that noted that he was absolutely sure that

‘there are no Hizbollah rockets in Southern Lebanon, as the UN will confirm…Hizbollah Resistance…Hizbollah missiles… are a myth.’

We noted in our post

On April 29, 2004, when The Independent asked Hitler-admiring historian David Irving for a quote about his plans for a lecture tour of Britain, Irving replied: “I will be happy to assist any journalist on the newspaper that publishes Robert Fisk.”

No surprise Ann el Khoury is fan.

We also noted

Mr Fisk is at it again, this time accusing Israel with the use of uranium weapons (of course, ’secret weapons’ are the tried and true mantra’s of Israel hating left (this is our favorite example). Inasmuch as he either lied or was totally misinformed about Hezbollah’s rockets (either scenario is sufficient grounds to ignore and/or distrust Fisk’s reporting), it is clear that Robert Fisk’s ‘analysis’ skills are woefully lacking, at best.

That said, they are clearly good enough for el Khoury.

Before you read the posts that so enraged el Khoury, we want to address some of the drivel she posted. Our words are in bold. What follows is her response.

* the ‘occupation’ of the Palestinian territories has been the most benign occupation in history.

This is a false statement and an utterly absurd claim. The longest running military occupation in history has been devastating for the Palestinians in the OPT (West Bank and Gaza Strip), with a ratio of 1:4 deaths – four Palestinians killed for every Israeli, most of them civilians, women and children. Is withholding Palestinians own money to invest in infrastructure, taxes Israel collects, benign? Is bombing an electricity station in the Gaza Strip “benign”? Is subjecting children and civilians to terrifying sonic booms “benign”? Humiliation at numerous checkpoints? Torture, strip-searches, strikes, bulldozing of houses, starvation, targeted killing, kidnapping of Palestinian ministers — the list could go on and on — “benign”?

More bigoted drivel. See this for a reality pill. The Palestinians wanted a violent intifada. They got one and they don’t like the outcome. On daily basis, institutionalized bigotry, racism and hate are forced on Palestinian society, exhorting them to embrace the ideology of slaughter. See here and here for a look at el Khoury’s ‘victims,’ for whom hate has long preceded the intifada. In the end, if it weren’t for the Israelis, the Palestinians would still be crapping in the streets (using Jewish tombstones from Mt Olives to line latrines and for sewage conduits).

* Cessation of hostilities and terror
* Secure borders.
* Diplomatic recognition of Israel.

Those are the minimum requirements as noted by Israel, the UN, the US, and the EU.

Which of those requirements are too onerous for the Palestinians and the Arab world?

El Khoury again attempts to manipulate the truth. We write (in bold) and she answers.

* Just because it is au courrant to say criticism of Israel is not anti-Semitic, does not make it so. It an absurd and skewed look at reality. Criticism of Israel has become anti-Semitic because there is a different standard of measurement for Israel than there is for any other country (the same applies to the US. When America is criticized, is also by a different yardstick).

Whether it is au courrant or not is irrelevant, the simple fact is that criticism of Israel in and of itself is most certainly not anti-Semitic. Judith Butler has written a good piece here, No, it is not anti-Semitic. The standards Israel are measured by are the standards it claims for itself – that of being democratic, claiming purity of arms, holding itself up above others (“light of nations). We already know most current Arab governments are despotic and authoritarian, but not uniformly so, but nor do they claim to be western-style democracies, nor are western-style democracies themselves the yardstick or paragon of virtue for other nations. In the region, Lebanon is also democratic and diverse along multi-religious lines.

The US is both praised and criticized by a hegemonial yardstick for the common-sensical reason that it’s a superpower. There are vastly different types of states, and it would not make sense holding Tuvalu or the Congo to the same set of standards, in part because they do not even claim the same standards as the US.

Indeed. Criticism of Israel is not anti Semitic. Criticism of Israel that holds that nation to a different standard from other nations is profoundly anti Semitic. As you denigrate Israel on a daily basis, by way misrepresentation, misinformation and outright deceit, is clearly anti Semitic. In addition, while Ann el Khoury excoriates Israel regularly, she has yet to refer to the Palestinians and Arab world that bask in the institutionalized hate and bigotry, as ‘racists,’ or other such terms with which she prefers to label the Israelis. That isn’t so much because those labels aren’t warranted- clearly, they are- but rather, because el Khoury can’t tear herself away from her own bigotry even long enough to pretend to be ‘even handed.’

The argument that the Palestinians need not be held top same standards as civilized nations, because ‘they do not even claim the same standards’ is idiotic. Who in their right mind then, would agree that a society as corrupt, broken, dysfunctional, racist, bigoted and violent as the Palestinians, deserved their own state? While that kind of bestial behavior is not noteworthy in the Arab world, it is behavior that is repulsive in the civilized world.

El Khoury would do well to read Dr Sanity’s Are Idiots Of This Magnitude Born Or Made? (we can only hope el Khoury finds Dr Sanity’s work as ‘promising’)

If all this Islamic intellectual discussion sounds familiar, it should. Jewish Conspiracies is another discipline (along with Genocidal Studies) that is a favorite academic field of study in the institutions of higher learning (such as they are) of the Middle East. Indeed, these complex disciplines are taught even in institutions of lower learning, so that a vast majority of the Islamic population are completely conversant with them and find them extremely helpful for explaining away the oppressive, barbaric, and primitive aspects of their culture and religion.

The ubiquitous unwillingness to look within themselves or their cultural and religious practices to understand the serious defects that keep them among the most backward and ignorant people on the planet, despite their access to great wealth, is the psychological foundation of their dysfunction.

The psychodynamic explanation has been discussed many times on this blog, and it is a psychological defense mechanism called projection–which in more extreme and bizarre forms is referred to a paranoia. And this cultural projection and paranoia serves a very important purpose for the culture: it allows them to maintain a delusional sense of grandiosity and superiority, despite the obvious evidence to the contrary in the real world. Thus, they never have to confront their own inadequacies and failures. If everything is the fault of the Jews, then the solution is to eradicate the Jews and all will be well!

Onward. Our words in bold and the bigot’s response.

SC&A wonder why el Khoury singles out Israel for such treatment. What is it about Israel that is so special? Why does el Khoury treat Israel so differently from other, real human rights violators? Of course, the answer is clear. Simply put, it is anti Semitism. To point to Israel as the worst human rights offender in the world is laughable.

First of all, where exactly do I claim that Israel is the worst human rights offender in the world? I’ve not claimed that, this constitutes yet another false claim and straw man fallacy.

Second, is Sigmund trying to circumscribe the content of my posts? That is my choice of what to post on, not his. I am not choosing to focus on human rights abuses in China, or the United States, or Australia. That is not my chosen area. My chosen area of interest on this occasion in this blog venue is the Middle East, and by pointing out Israel’s egregious abuses and the fact that it does not live up to its own claims, does not constitute singling out. Does someone interested in China get accused of singling out China? Hardly, that’s their area of focus.

So let me put the question back to Sigmund. What is it about Israel that is so special that one can not choose to legitimately focus upon its foreign policies without attracting the absurd charge that one is singling it out?

Is anyone telling him not to focus upon the Arab world? Or the Left? Or Islam, which he systematically vilifies?

The apparent difference between us is that I include Israeli voices of dissent, as well as right-of-centre voices too, whereas the left only appears in his posts to smear and slander them.

Finally, a fair response. El Khoury admits that Israel is not the worst human rights violator in the world. She also admits to singling Israel out to service her own anti Semitic agenda.

If el Khoury is going to single Israel out, let her do so in context. On the one hand, she says Israel and the Palestinians are moral equals- on the other hand, she points to what she says are Israeli hypocrisies.

Pay attention, bigots. There are comparisons to made in the world of hypocrisies, too. Does Ann el Khoury really want to play the comparison game? Does Ann el Khoury really want to examine what is published in Arab and Palestinian media on a daily basis? Does Ann el Khoury want to talk about human rights abuses in Israel and compare them to human rights abuses in the Arab world? We could go on, but human nature dictates that criticisms always invite comparisons.

There is simply a closing of doors and a cessation of communications, as if the case against Israel were so egregious that it stood out in a most singular fashion.

Sigmund, first you say I expended thousands of words, now you claim a “cessation of communications”. How exactly was the door closed? Did I not engage you point by point and address all key points? I’d say my communication was quite comprehensive, whatever its merits.

El Khoury believes that parroting and upholding bigotry as moral equivalence is keeping the door open. That is like saying ongoing discussions that allow for the KKK or Nazi ideology (‘We’ll finish what Hitler started’) as an exchange between moral equals is a good and worthwhile idea. That may make the Arab world feel good, but in the end, Arab racism, bigotry and hate are not acceptable forms of political or religious ideology in the civilized world.

It is the Arab world and Palestinians that have closed the door to civilized behavior. We wrote:

What we see in the Middle East are members of a group so desirous of love (worthiness) and attention, that they make a deliberate choice to opt out of the rules that define civilized society. They refuse to deal with or even interact with non members. This is no small matter or self imposed isolation. Human progress of every single type has it’s origins in the interaction we have with each other. By deliberately choosing to not participate in an honest exchange with others, or by believing that forced or coerced interactions… are the equivalent of real exchanges, many in the Arab world separate themselves from the reality, even as they perceive that their forced interactions place them center stage, or in a position to dictate reality. The Cartoon Riots are an example of that. In the end, free speech in the west will not simply disappear (notwithstanding shrill cries to the opposite).

We also wrote

There is no desire for peace or accommodation. The Arab world, influenced by the fundamentalists, desires to be both victim and victimizer. They at once see themselves as tormented and passive, and in the same breath, declare their wild desire to be tormentors and inflict all kinds of punishment. As long as there is a single Jew left, they are justified in their primal desires. Religious authorities indoctrinate entire populations with hate and fundamentalism, knowing full well that these citizens, frustrated by their own impotence, will react to their exhortations with an almost sexually driven kind of frenzy that releases pent up emotions in the form of murderous rage, sadism and the urge to dominate.

The need to hate is not about hate, per se. The more one hates, the more one wants to destroy. Hate the Jews enough and you will want to destroy them. Hate the west enough and you will want to destroy that, too.

Finally,

In a shame culture, the success of the other only deepens the sense of failure and humiliation. In most cultures, in order to overcome a sense of shame, huge efforts are expended to correct and then exceed and excel.

In the Arab world, pride can be regained not by excelling or achieving, but rather, by destroying. If the source of humiliation is no longer visible, then the humiliation no longer exists. No matter the cost to the society, culture, individual or community, destruction is preferable to achievement. Why? Because in order to achieve, you have to fail before you find the formula for success. That is the price of achievement- decades, and sometimes a lifetime of hard work. That is a formula that remains a mystery to most Arabs in the Middle East. They believe they are entitled to the successes that elude them.

One last bite for now. Our words on bold, el Khoury’s ‘response’ follows:

Her defense of Hamas- and even worse, her implying that they and Israel are moral equivalents- is no different from support of the KKK, Nazi or any other racist and bigoted ideology.

I said Arabs and Israelis were both human beings and moral equals as such, get your facts straight first of all. Then apply the same standard rather than double standards.

Nowhere do I say that I “support” Hamas, rather I say they should be recognized as the democratically and legitimately elected government.

I also made a clear distinction between recognition of a regime and between active support for it, citing the fact that the current Bush-Cheney presidency are also responsible for a genocidal war yet recognizing them is not tantamount to “supporting” them, nor to supporting any other regime. And for all your touted racist and bigoted ideology, no word about Israel’s mutated militant Zionism, very racist and very bigoted.

Yes, Arabs and Israelis are human beings. That, sadly, is not enough to make them moral equivalents. There is a difference between murderers and your grandmother. There is even a difference between you and cannibals.

Simply walking upright does not convey moral equivalence.

Further, as we have mentioned before,

…Adolph Hitler too, was democratically elected. Had free European nations boycotted or even eliminated the Nazi leadership, 50 million lives would have been spared. We are under no obligation to recognize or support any regime, even if democratically elected, that promises ‘rivers of blood.’

We have also noted that the Nazis attempted to hide their evil intentions. Hamas cannot be bothered- and for good reason. The Nazi ideology was not fully known or understood by the Germans until after Hitler was in power. Hamas has never made a secret of it’s ideologies and beliefs that have espoused hate, racism, bigotry and violence. The Palestinians that voted for Hamas knew exactly what and who they were voting for. They made very clear who and what they are, as do the Arab nations that support Hamas.

National political parties and social service agencies that want to be considered moral equals to with those in the western world cannot preach and teach hate- and be surprised when violence becomes a way of life. Hamas and Jihad for example, make no effort to hide their bigoted and racist agenda. In fact, Hamas, Jihad, et al, are no different than the Ku Klux Klan and other neo-Nazi organizations (many of which maintain relationships with Hamas).

Imagine a the Ku Klux Klan insisting it were the equivalent of other political party and organizations. Imagine a network of Ku Klux Klan schools. What do you suppose that curriculum would be like? Now, imagine that the children that attended those schools went home every day and were then exposed to Klan TV. Imagine those ideologies reinforced by the clergy, each week.

Imagine Klan summer camps that taught children guerrilla warfare and how to kill the neighbors they hated.

Imagine Klan schools, camps and other institutions bordered on a black, Jewish, Catholic or other immigrant neighborhoods.

Do you still see Hamas in the same way?

That el Khoury attempts to legitimize the morality of Hamas speaks volumes to her own bigotry. Now, no one ever said Hamas was not elected. They were. That said, we are not obliged to deal with that government, by virtue of her win at the polls. If that were mandatory, why doesn’t el Khoury demand the Arab world recognize a democratically elected Israeli government, one far less bigoted, racist and committed to violence than Hamas?

That ought to be quite a dance, Ann.

In any event, below are the SC&A posts referenced by Ann el Khoury as offensive. Apparently, she doesn’t like her kinds of deceit exposed.

Dr Saree Makdisi: Tenured Deceit

Cindy Sheehan Another Cow Put Out To Pasture: Cindy Sheehan’s Last Dance

Phillip Weiss: Deceit, Dysfunction and the Dance of the Left *

Dr Joseph Massad: Joseph Massad, Columbia’s Comedian

The Left: “Yeah, leftists really do care about justice. Just like pedophiles care about children”

Dr Steven Soldz: Gagdad Bob Finds The Blogosphere’s Holy Grail

We will address Ann el Khoury’s other deceit in subsequent posts.

Slouching Towards Gaza

June 24, 2007

MHNN (New York)- As events in the Middle East unfold at a breakneck pace, sources have informed MHNN that Dr Pat M Santy, therapist of world reknown and author Carnival of the Insanities, has agreed to a request by Ismael Haniyah, the Hamas Prime Minister, for a series of therapy sessions to deal with Haniyah’s anxiety.

Sources tell MHNN that Haniyah initially refused to speak with Dr Santy until she was recommended by Iranian leader, Mahmoud Ahmadenijad.

Despite a rocky start, Dr Santy has been working with Iranian leader. Ahmadenijad requested some time with Dr Santy after seeing an MHNN report published in March. In referring to Dr Santy, the Iranian leader had said

That so called American psychiatrist would be nothing here. Just because she worked for NASA, that American agency that disguises American imperialist aggression, is of no consequence.

The Peaceful Iranian Space Studies (PISS) project has launched 27 secret satellites that can detect Jews, Americans and other westerners from space. Our satellites orbit Uranus so as to avoid to detection by the Americans and Israelis.

Dr Santy applied for and was rejected by PISS. It is clear she is upset about her rejection when faced with the realization she was ill equipped to deal with superior Iranian technology.

The Iranian leader later contacted the renowned Dr Santy, former NASA flight surgeon and organic waste in space disposal expert and asked for help.

It was her analysis skills and ability to sift the desert sands of my mind that made me realize she could be of help. We found out her colleagues at NASA referred to her as ‘Flush Santy.’ We here in Tehran had to laugh- we are sure they meant ‘Flash Santy.’

We asked Dr Santy about her sojourns to Tehran and her upcoming sessions with Ismael Haniyah.

MHNN: Welcome. How does it feel to be so widely accepted in the Middle East?

PMS: Thank you for having me. It feels strange to be doing so much traveling. On the other hand, Tehran isn’t all that much different than Ann Arbor or Berkeley.

MHNN: Surely you jest! There must be some very big differences.

PMS: Mostly, the differences can be found within the student populations. Here, they resent the repressive authoritarian regime. In Ann Arbor, they celebrate the regime. Ahmadenijad laughs when talk about it in our sessions. He admitted that the regime gives out very few visas to American students- “If they came, the jig would be up for us. ” Also, in Arbor, better pizza and deli are to be had. On the other hand, the Middle East has better falafel and humus.

MHNN: Do you see any hope for a peaceful Middle East? Will Ahmadenijad come to his senses?

PMS: You are a reporter. Pretend you are smart. Ahmadenijad can no more come to his senses than Ann el Khoury or Ismael Haniyah can tell the truth. The idea is to change behaviors, not mindsets. To change the way a society thinks takes couple of generations.

MHNN: So how do you change behaviors?

PMS: In the case of Ahmadenijad or Haniyah, threats are most effective- Hi! Meet MOAB! Couple that with support for political opponents and they will pay attention. For the el Khoury’s of this world, simply pointing out our awareness of their hypocrisy and their deceit is enough to further dull an already blade, so to speak. When you remind a fool that he or she is nothing more than an ape in a tuxedo, the ape has two choices. He or she can learn or he or she will spiral into an ever deeper pathology. Civilized people don’t care which they choose. As three brilliant and erudite friends like to say, “the disconnect from reality is always amusing to watch. They really believe that they can and will mislead the decision makers of the west. It’s always a treat to see their faces, after the dance, when they realize the westerners really do know the reality and the truth.” When things in therapy go badly, I threaten to bring in the three shrinks. It is usually at this point the whack job understands why I make them wear the Santy’s Panties.

MHNN: Are you saying they are so disconnected?

PMS: Any idiot can tell you they are that disconnected. Ismael Haniyah believes the Palestinian problem is Israel. He sees the corruption, deceit and hypocrisy as a right. to be exploited so that he can further exploit. As far as he- and his supporters, like Ann el Khoury are concerned, the populations can be conned into believing that Israel is a source of ‘shame’ and ‘humiliation.’

MHNN: Isn’t that true?

PMS: Don’t be an idiot or this interview is over. Do you wear Santy’s Panty’s on your head?

Now listen up. If the Arab world and Palestinians were really humiliated and shamed, they would build schools, not bombs. If they were really shamed, they would actually educate their children and not teach them to hate and kill. If the Palestinians were really ashamed and humiliated, they would demand their leaders make peace with Israel. It isn’t as of the conditions were too tough.

* Cessation of hostilities and terror
* Secure borders.
* Diplomatic recognition of Israel.

Those are the minimum requirements as noted by Israel, the UN, the US, and the EU.

Only the Palestinians, the Arab world and their supporters think so. I suppose there is hope. Egypt has become the first Arab nation to actually go ‘first world.’ They are now building (read: assembling) washing machines. Of course, if the Israelis weren’t supplying the parts, that achievement (the equivalent of building the pyramids in present day Egypt) would still be on the horizon.

MHNN: What will you tell Haniyah?

PMS: First I’m going to tell him I’m wearing a secret Israeli tracking device that also monitors conversations. If his lies get out of hand, I’ll tell him to make a few very fast goodbye calls.

MHNN: But won’t that put you in danger?

PMS: Don’t be an idiot. I’ll tell him the Israelis have a secret gas bomb that only kills Arabs and not Italians or Jews. He’ll respond by saying, ‘THAT’S NOT TRUE! WE ONLY SAID THAT FOR PROPAGANDA REASONS! ONLY IDIOTS WOULD BELIEVE THAT!’

I’ll respond by telling him to shut up and stop blaming his mother for his problems. I’ll tell him the Israelis wanted me to thank him for giving them the idea.

MHNN: But won’t he know you lied to him when he sees this interview?

PMS: Did I?

MHNN: Do you give your famous patients any homework or assignemnets?

PMS: Of course I do. They have to read Carnival of the Insanities. I like to come into a therapy session when the patient knows just how far down the sanity ladder he really is.

MHNN: Doesn’t that hurt their self esteem?

PMS: This interview is over, you dumb bitch. Keep the Santy’s Panty’s on your head- you are going to need them.

Souvenirs

June 23, 2007

“My parents went to Alaska and all I got was this lousy….”

You just can’t make this stuff up.

Like hundreds of other Israeli security start-ups, SDS boasts that it was founded by veterans of Israel’s secret police and that its products were road-tested on Palestinians. Not only has the company tried out the biofeedback terminals at a West Bank checkpoint, it claims the “concept is supported and enhanced by knowledge acquired and assimilated from the analysis of thousands of case studies related to suicide bombers in Israel”.

In other words, the technology has proved proved effective at preventing terror and suicide bombings. Of course, ‘biofeedback’ must now be categorized as new form of torture. Clearly, preventing terror and suicide bombings are an egregious example of racism.

The article goes on to say that

Political chaos means Israel is booming like it’s 1999 – and the boom is in defence exports field-tested on Palestinians.

That’s a serious charge, so let’s examine the possibilities.

If the Palestinians really wanted to defeat the Israelis, they would cease their obsessive devotion to terror. The burgeoning security industry would collapse and the Israeli economy would spin into a recession. If all Islamist terror would cease, Israeli expertise in security and terror would no longer be needed anywhere in the world and that nation would be reduced to irrelevance (it’s not as if Israel has anything to offer, unlike the Arab world)

That would teach those damned ‘sons of apes and pigs’!

In Israel, unlike the US, the high-tech homeland ’security’ industry is tried and tested on apartheid checkpoints and on the Palestinian people. This will be another reason for neocons to stoke the fires of fear to prolong profit, and to increase the matrix of control. Guarding against the influence of this complex, to invoke Eisenhower’s famous injunction, starts with educating ourselves.

Can you guess who came up with those remarks?

Yes, it’s yet another conspiracy. Testing and implementing security devices and protocols on one’s own borders is now an apartheid practice.

Yunis Al-Astal: “In the second Al-Aqsa Intifada, females martyrdom-seekers emerged. These are young women, in the prime of their life, at a time when girls like these think only about jewelry and preparing for marriage. Nevertheless, they went to their martyrdom, advancing head-on with a great fighting spirit. This intifada of ours has recorded more than 15 exemplary cases of girls who were martyred for the sake of Allah. But not before making the Jews – the brothers of apes and pigs – taste the bitterness of death, and not before avenging the blood of the martyrs, the wounded, the bereaved, the prisoners, the displaced, those whose homes were destroyed, those whose lands were bulldozed, and all those who were affected by the earthquake of the sons of Zion…”

The women of Islam, especially in regions of tension – and I emphasize Iraq and Afghanistan, where the Americans run rampant. … If we are capable – and, Allah willing we are indeed capable – of shattering America’s might and rubbing its nose in the dirt, we will deliver the world from this global American bully, from the European Crusader hypocrisy, and the hateful paganism worldwide. What is required of the men and women of these peoples – but especially the women – is that they take [an example] from Rim Al-Riyashi, from Fatima Al-Najjar, and from the long list of women, and especially from Umm Nidhal, the mother of Muhammad Farhat, who sacrificed three children as martyrs, and who threatens the enemy that her remaining children will become martyrdom-seekers, and will make the Jews taste the evil consequences of their deeds.”

That’s quite the dance there, Ms el Khoury!

This is the second of a three part series. The last and final installment will be published on Monday.

We received an email yesterday, from a reader of Reclaiming Space (otherwise known as ‘People’s Geography’). Our correspondent thought we were too harsh in our treatment of Ann el Khoury, the author of that blog (yesterday, we mistakenly misspelled Ms Khoury’s first name. Our apologies). The email missive touted Ms Khoury’s ‘record’ of ‘inclusion’ and her ‘desire to be even handed.’

Like Ms Khoury, our correspondent is sadly out of touch with reality and like Ms Khoury, a creation of postmodern drivel (we will look at that later on).
Ms Khoury’s ‘even handedness’ is rarely if ever, seen in her work and even less visible is any kind of commitment to the truth. While she claims to be versed in politics, she displays what is either a profound lack of understanding of political fundamentals or an unhealthy addiction to deceit.

In A Sacred Right: The Palestinian Right Of Return, el Khoury breathlessly emphasizes the opinion of Jew who takes issue with and then rewrites Israel’s past. She presents the opinion piece by Alex Stein, as Gospel and this Phd candidate is only too happy to go along with the revisionist history:

Why should I, a Jew from north London, be permitted to take up Israeli citizenship, when that right is denied to a Palestinian who languishes in a refugee camp in Lebanon? Especially when I acknowledge that a large majority of those that left in 1948 were ethnically cleansed by Israeli forces.

If Ms Khoury had even fundamental understanding of political reality, or a any kind of desire to be honest, she would have at the very least acknowledged the truth about Israel’s rather unremarkable immigration policy.

We wrote

…appears to be woefully ill informed when it comes to immigration policy. As a free and sovereign state, Israel has the right to have any immigration policy it chooses. Further, Israeli immigration policy is remarkably similar to the immigration policies of other nations.

Citizenship status is derived by way of one of two criteria- ‘blood’ or ‘land.’

In the United States, for example, citizenship is primarily derived by ‘land’ status. That means that if you were born here, you are automatically awarded citizenship.

Conversely, being born in Switzerland is no guarantee of citizenship. In fact, there are generations of people that have been born in Switzerland that are not entitled to Swiss citizenship according to Swiss law.

Descendants of British, Irish and Polish ancestry, for example, are all entitled to enhanced and privileged immigration status by those nations. Throughout most of Europe, having even a bit of ‘preferred’ blood entitles one to a citizenship ‘fast track.’

Israel has every right to determine her own immigration rules.

Consider too, the rescue of Ethiopian Jews (the largest rescue of Blacks by whites in history) and compare that to the slaughter by the Arab tribe janjaweed in Darfur and the ongoing slave trade by Arab slave traders in Mauritania. It isn’t surprising that Muslims that made their way from Sudan want to stay in Israel.

In fact, when the Israelis pulled out of Lebanon after occupying an 11 mile security zone (After years of rocket attacks against civilians and the Lebanese government’s inability or unwillingness to halt those attacks, the Israelis had enough), even the Alawites, the clan than claims the ruling Assads of Syria, pleaded to remain under Israeli jurisdiction, preferring Israeli rule to that of an Arab country.

Ms Khoury appears totally unaware of the political realities, preferring instead her own interpretations and racist world view.

Her racism becomes clear in Iran’s President Did Not Say Israel Must be Wiped Off The Map. She quotes one Arash Norouzi:

Across the world, a dangerous rumor has spread that could have catastrophic implications. According to legend, Iran’s President has threatened to destroy Israel, or, to quote the misquote, “Israel must be wiped off the map”. Contrary to popular belief, this statement was never made, as this article will prove.

In el Khoury’s world, Mahmoud Ahmadenijad is really a nice, but misunderstood man, and a ‘victim’ of all kinds of ‘misunderstandings.’

El Khoury’s blog tag, ‘Holocaust Related’ is perhaps the best indicator of her intellectual dishonesty. Only articles (preferably written by Jews) that are dismissive or belittle the Holocaust are on her radar. She herself is very careful- she posits not a single word when it comes to the horrors of the Holocaust. Ahmadinejad would be so proud!

What is it about Israel that el Khoury finds so offensive?

In the end, el Khoury is a fraud- and an anti Semite, notwithstanding el Khoury’s protestations and assurances ‘that some of her best friends are Jews.’

To be sure, Israel, as a nation, is not above reproach. There are policies that deserve renunciation and reconsideration. Nevertheless, to single Israel out from the body of world nations that have for decades and longer have been far more repressive than Israel has ever been as an expression of ‘anti-Zionism’ is patently anti-Semitic. That is especially true when real instances of genocide and ethnic cleansing are occurring and el Khoury and her ilk ignore the tragedies in favor of singling out Israel for excoriation.

The utter hypocrisy and duplicity of el Khoury is clear. Where is the outrage directed at Russia, considering the atrocities in Chechnya? Where is the outrage directed at Kuwait after the expulsion of 350,000 Palestinians? Has she ever expressed outrage directed toward Syria, after the slaughter of 10,000-30,000 in Hama and the occupation of Lebanon? How about boycotting China for human right’s abuses that are legendary? How about Castro’s Cuba? Then there is Darfur, a decades long tragedy that has resulted in 2 million deaths, so far. Mauritania is where Arab slave traders, to this day, go to ply their trade. That too, is off el Khoury’s ‘inclusive’ and ‘even handed’ radar.

Criticism of Israel is one thing- that is, a free exchange of ideas, a back and forth. There is none of that. There is simply a closing of doors and a cessation of communications, as if the case against Israel were so egregious that it stood out in a most singular fashion.

SC&A wonder why el Khoury singles out Israel for such treatment. What is it about Israel that is so special? Why does el Khoury treat Israel so differently from other, real human rights violators?

Of course, the answer is clear. Simply put, it is anti Semitism. To point to Israel as the worst human rights offender in the world is laughable. Now, two UN Secretaries General have openly pointed out what el Khoury cannot be bothered to address- the hypocrisy and deceit of singling Israel out as a horrific offender of human rights. As far back as 2003, Reporteur sans Frontieres have labeled the UN Commission on Human Rights a travesty- and yet el Khoury, who is obsessed with seeing herself as champion of human rights, understandably has yet to acknowledge yet another truth that would upend her her deceit.

There are tens of millions of women that have suffered FGM- and the world, for the most part, el khoury included, remains silent (SC&A wonder how quiet el Khoury would be if Jews were committing these atrocities).

Simply because there are people like el Khoury who close their minds to reality or accept and promulgate deceit as truth, does mean those deceits are expressions of democratic values. Just because it is au courrant to say criticism of Israel is not anti-Semitic, does not make it so. It an absurd and skewed look at reality. Criticism of Israel has become anti-Semitic because there is a different standard of measurement for Israel than there is for any other country (the same applies to the US. When America is criticized, is also by a different yardstick).

One more, Jews are being ‘ghettoized’ by the likes of el Khoury- this time, in their own country, singled out and set apart.

The fact remains that Israel is as legitimate a country as any other nation (probably more so than some of her neighbors), notwithstanding el Khoury’s intellectual deceit.

Virtually every country in the world was founded on the basis of conflict. Whatever your country of origin, it’s very existence today, is as the result of conflict. That said, el Knoury’s bigoted, sanctimonious, irrelevant opinions and feelings about Israel as being a special and particularly egregious case is hypocrisy at it’s peak. The criticism of Israel under the guise of ‘outrage’ at the ‘treatment’ of the Palestinians or the ‘violation of human rights’ is a laughable outrage. As we noted earlier, the ‘occupation’ of the Palestinian territories has been the most benign occupation in history.

The old canard of ‘ethnic cleansing’ is often touted as the goal of Israeli policies in the region. That is simply a tired excuse, hauled out, when legitimate argument cannot be made.

Ethnic cleansing is what occurred in East Timor, when the Christians were slaughtered by Muslims, or forced to convert at ‘edge of sword’- and were forcibly circumcised. Ethnic cleansing took place when the GIA in Algeria raped and murdered children as a matter of course- because the GIA wished to instill it’s own version of Islam. Ethnic cleansing has resulted in the death of hundreds of thousands in Darfur (you know, the place Israel’s critics don’t give a damn about)- women raped to the music of singing Arab women. Hundreds of thousands- if not millions- dead, and nary a word from the AUT.

The death toll as a result of the intifada? Just over 3,000 Palestinians in the five year period from 2000 to 2005.

Lets be clear. The hatred of Jews pre-existed the establishment of the State of Israel. What Israel is facing now is a continuation of a long honored tradition- excoriate the Jews, any way possible. Those that profess to be anti Israel only, have been given a gift, of course. They can spew their Anti-Semitism because they can make the claim they are protecting an ‘underdog,’ the Palestinians, from the ‘evil’ machinations of the Jewish lobby, Jewish ideology and the Jewish State.

It bears to remember that the Arab world had no part in the persecution of Jews in Europe (though they certainly did an admirable job of it in the Arab countries). The Muslim community, if they chose, could point to the Christian world and say, ‘This is your shame, not ours.’ Instead, they celebrate and identify with the horrors perpetrated by the Nazis and even glorify the evil, pining in their writings, ‘If only Hitler had finished the job…’

We wonder why.

El Khoury cannot contain her bigotry. She is like a pedophile who professes to love children.

When El Khoury and her ilk deliberately refuse to divine the difference between Hizbollah, with their committed and stated anti Semitism (Nasrallah has often referred to Jews as ‘descendants of apes and pigs’) and Israel, she and they identify themselves liars or idiots. When Mein Kampf remains a best seller for decades in the Arab world and decades old promises to ‘finish what Hitler started,’ el Khoury cannot be taken seriously when she feigns outrage (and even then, mildly). Her refusal to to take a stand against proactively against those kind of outrages speaks for itself and undermines her credibility.

Why some forms of racism are given a pass, Ms el Khoury? Why does ‘even handedness’ mean only the constant excoriation of Israel? How is it that el Khoury seems to have missed the institutionalized racism, bigotry and hate that come to define the Arab world? How is it that el Khoury sees fit to ignore that kind of hate?

The good news is that el Khoury’s deceptions serve an important purpose- they invite comparisons between Israel and the Arab world. In fact, we were introduced to Ms Khoury after we published The Israeli Beast. She could not abide the sunlight. In her absurd world, Israel’s achievements are not the result of hard work, effort or the determination to excel- they are the result of the exploitation of Palestinians.

Therein lies an evident truth. Jews escaped the Holocaust as victims and built a state with world class educational institutions, a viable economy and a free and democratic government. In fact, the Jews built in 50 years what the Arab world, with all it’s obscene wealth, could not build in 2,000 years. Ann el Khoury would have you believe that is the fault of the Jews.

To repeat-

Of all the states on Earth, every one of which was created in bloodshed, only one has its existence constantly challenge…And then we wonder why people equate anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism.

Indeed Ann, what is it about Israel and her inhabitants that is so special? What exactly is it that enrages you so?

What does Ms Khoury think happened at Sabra and Shatilla? Why did the Phalange go into the camps? Was it out of a sense of unbounded love? Does Ms Khoury and the Lebanese Army today see the Palestinians comrades in arms?

Will Ms Khoury rewrite history again? Will she misrepresent the findings of the Kahane Commission? Will she dismiss Nagi Najjar’s eye witness account of the events?

Ann el Khoury, graduate student of ‘Human Geography’ is a product of wide but shallow pool that is postmodernism.

Dr Sanity, in the Children of Postmodern Nihilism:

These are the children of postmodernism; steeped in the nihilism of our day. They believe in nothing and stand for nothing. They utter the same old tired and worn self-serving platitudes of a defunct and dangerous world view, but anyone can see that the fire has gone out of their movement. They are losing, and they know it. But they are so narcissistically invested in that world view, that they tremble in fear whenever the real world presents them with something that contradicts their religiously held beliefs.

They are in a great deal of terror at the moment. Not, of course from Jihadis (which would be rational) but because their world view is under attack whenever a George W. Bush is elected; or a Sarkozy or Merkel, for that matter. They cling to the Hugo Chavez types for dear life; and pray that thugs like Ahmadinejad and Zawahiri are able to humiliate and defeat their real enemy, which is America and all it stands for.

These children were raised on postmodern milk; and their brain development has reached a point of no return and is functioning now for the sole purpose of blocking out the real world; rather than trying to understand it. Reality, truth and reason are far too dangerous for their childish beliefs and behaviors.

If you can convince children that objective reality is an illusion; that A does not equal A; that black is white; and that good is bad; if you can make them accept that everything is subjective and relative; then you own them. They will believe any drivel. Through the appropriate manipulation of language, everything can be distorted, without the messy need to resort to facts, logic, or reason.

Without a rational metaphysics–or worldview–that explains the nature of existence and reality; and without an epistemology that says our minds are able to acquire knowledge of that reality; then it is easy to enforce conformity, totalitarian thinking, and political passivity.

Ethics, or the study of how man should behave in the world–or, what is good and what is evil–is totally dependent on both metaphysics and epistemology, because it is impossible to make choices withoug knowledge; just as it is impossible to have knowledge without a reality that can be known by our minds.

What matters in the postmodernist’s convoluted thinking is not truth or falsity–only the effectiveness of the language used. Lies, distortions, ad hominem attacks; attempts to silence opposing views–all are strategies that are perfectly satisfactory if they achieve the desired effect. Ideas and reason must make way for reification of feelings; and freedom is replaced by thought control.

If you wonder why they exhibit so much animosity and emotional hysteria directed against traditional values and ideas; and against Republicans, neocons, Christians, Males etc. etc.; then understand the nature of the postmodern nihilism that defines and sustains them. The pervasive and unrelenting trickle down of postmodern theories and thinking in education, art, politics and all the social areas of life has resulted in a crop of humans who are opposed to thinking because it is far to dangerous to their secular religious beliefs. Even science has not been immune from the nihilism and anti-reason, anti-reality agenda of the postmodernists.

If you want to understand why nothing seems to make sense and the most blatant contradictions and relativistic meanderings are presented as absolute truth; why language is abused and words don’t seem to have the same definitions anymore; and can sometimes even mean the opposite of what they used to; why photographs can lie; why contradictory discourses and distortion of truth; and ad hominem attacks and a distinct reluctance to face reality are all a part of the “reality-based” community–you need look no further than postmodernism.

And finally, if you want to understand why that which is truly evil –embracing death, slavery, and nihilism–is now presented and even trumpeted as the “good” while the good is dismissed, denigrated and mocked; then you would do well to understand the psychology and ideology of the covert enemies of America and of civilization–the adult children of postmodern nihilism.

Dr Sanity, in Postmodern Leftist Tripe,

Well, there are two reasons we are being subjected to this kind of propaganda. The first is that historical revisionism is not something that is confined to psychotic regimes in the Middle East who convene “scientific” conferences to “prove” that the Holocaust did not even happen (I’ll bet a Gallup poll in Iran, or anywhere in the muslim world for that matter, would have even more than 54% of the population agree that it didn’t. Are we supposed to believe that such a poll has anything to do with reality?).

The second reason is that in our lovely postmodern world, where reality and truth are only relative and anybody’s “reality” is as good as anybody else’s; is is just a matter of a poll or two, constructed along ideological lines to fit a particular template; that can somehow determine today, what history will say many tomorrows from now. With enough repetition and passion, “history” can be set in stone in the temporal present…

For them, popularity will always trump truth and reality. They will never acknowledge, let alone take responsibility for the millions that their ideology killed in the last century and the unbelievable depths of human misery their ideas wrought. They will only continue their con, protected by the fog of postmodernism.

Today’s political left might have a few transient moments of glory left in them, but the perfidy and nihilism that is destroying civilization and which is relentlessly promoted by their mindless minions through the irrational postmodern rhetoric we’ve come to expect from the MSM has now been fully exposed.

The left deeply fears neoconservatism and the economic and political freedom that it supports, and will stop at nothing to discredit its ideas. But they cannot do it using reason, reality, and truth; so these impediments they must abandon.

In our last installment, we will look at the postmodern environment that has birthed ‘Human Geography’ and how that environment attracts intellectual lightweights and agendized bigots like Ann Khoury.

In the end Ann el Khoury has yet to answer the question we posed.

* Cessation of hostilities and terror
* Secure borders.
* Diplomatic recognition of Israel.

Those are the minimum requirements as noted by Israel, the UN, the US, and the EU.

Which of those requirements are too onerous for the Palestinians and the Arab world?

In Ms Khoury’s defense, her response to our posts noted under ‘pages’ in our sidebar, was that they ‘showed promise.

No doubt our clients will appreciate her endorsement.

First And Last Resorts

June 21, 2007

Dr Sanity has written Rushdie Rage And The Religion Of Perpetual Whining And Outrage, a look at the current brouhaha over the knighthood awarded to Salman Rushdie. The award winning author went on to more fame and notoriety with the publication of the Satanic Verses, a novel in which it is alleged he portrayed Mohammad in a less than savory and simplistic light. The book was the cause of much outrage in the Islamic world, complete with fatwas calling for Rushdie’s assassination.

Dr Sanity provocatively notes

After the Danish Cartoon drama; after the flushing the Koran fiasco; after the latest Rushdie rage hysteria, it should be obvious to anyone with a brain (which sadly, excludes most of the robots on the left these days) that multiculturalism and the politically correct mindset has been repeatedly exposed as a complete fraud. With each increasingly bizarre and histrionic reaction from the religion of perpetual outrage, the shocking consequences and deadly potential of that fraud are suddenly becoming all too clear…

Having given up any objective standard by which to mediate such vastly different perspectives and feelings; having abandoned reason altogether in favor of expressing one’s feelings no matter what the cost; and, finally, having endlessly touted the critical importance and essential need to “belong” to one’s race, tribe, religion or group first and foremost; the outcome is what Stephen Hicks refers to as “group balkinization” –with all its inevitable and inescapable conflict.

Why, in other words, would peaceful coexistence result from a movement that has done everything in its power to eradicate universalism and foist multiculturalism into the public consciousness?

Multiculturalism, or that which celebrates–not belonging to the family of humanity– but one’s sexual, racial, ethnic, or religious identity above all else.

Like many ideas of the left, it should now be apparent to anyone with a brain, that the exact opposite of what is promised ends up being delivered.

Just as the false promises of socialism and communism were found to lead to misery instead of happiness; poverty instead of wealth; enslavement instead of freedom–so too, have multiculturalism and political correctness, instead of harmony, brought lethal discord.

In western culture, violence or even the threat of violence, are responses of last resort. In much of the Islamic world, violence or the threat of violence, are reactions of the first resort.

It is clear the knighthood angered many in the Islamic world.

That said, it is also clear that rather than ask for explanations or clarifications, or even ask to be heard, many in the Islamic world have threatened violence. Pakistani government officials have chimed in, threatening violence- and worse. The Minister of Religious Affairs remarked,

“If someone blows himself up he will consider himself justified. How can we fight terrorism when those who commit blasphemy are rewarded by the West?”

The Minister later retracted his remarks, saying they were ‘misunderstood.’ What he meant to say was that he didn’t believe he would be busted by the western press.

Mr Rushdie was awarded a knighthood for his literary achievements, which extend well beyond Satanic Verses. He not awarded the honor because of his being a Muslim, a lapsed Muslim or for any other reason.

In western cultures, criticism and parody have become integral parts of our culture- and Rushdie has made his life in western society. Clearly, Rushdie offended many. That is regrettable, but in the end, in a western democracy, that is his right. Those who take umbrage at Rushdie’s literary efforts seem to have no trouble offending or excoriating others. It is interesting to note that some of the most vociferous objections to Rushdie comes from Iran, a nation that has a less than stunning record when it comes to violence, persecution and the execution of minors and the mentally handicapped.

The basis of civilized exchange and growth is predicated on just that- exchange. Resorting to violence or threatening to resort to violence as a first response is backward, to say the least. Muslims have every right- and obligation, even- to make their views known, heard and understood. That effort however, does not include the right to violence, to incite violence or to upend western freedoms.

Hopefully, a time will come, when representatives of Muslim societies can sit down and talk reasonably with their western counterparts. If there is mutual respect and an eye to actually share exchanges rather than threats, there is ground for meaningful and productive cultural exchanges.

Until then, the adversarial relationships between western and Muslim societies will continue.

Bigots are a strange lot.

They come in three varieties, the overt bigot, the unaware bigot and the covert bigot.

Overt bigots are up front about their repulsive beliefs. They are what they are and they make no apologies for their beliefs. They are so committed to their beliefs that they openly attempt to recruit for their cause. They are a kind of zealot or religious fundamentalist. The unaware bigots don’t even realize they are bigots. That of course, occurs in a small window of time, when they believe they ‘see the light’ and sign onto what is usually an effort in displacement- faults, troubles, failures and bad judgment are the fault of the ‘other.’ When their bigotry is pointed out, healthy people recoil- they want no part of the ugliness. Unhealthy people are very different. Even when pointed out, they refuse to see the bigotry, they deny the bigotry, they justify the bigotry or they attempt to recast the bigotry into something very different than what it is. They are not proud of their bigotry like the overt bigot. They are not as pure as the unaware bigot.

Covert bigots are equally as bigoted as their overt cousins, but they spend an enormous amount of effort pretending they are not bigots. For them, the bigotry fills a real need. Often, they feel like failures or persecuted or they lack direction in their lives. Being in the company of bigots alleviates or further obscures some of what they know is failure on their part. Being a part of an unhealthy community of bigots lends itself to a gratifying and satisfying individual and mass denial of very evident dysfunction and psychopathies.

Covert bigots need to see themselves as noble or as a persecuted, so as to justify what they know is plain, run of the mill bigotry. In reality, that bigotry does more to assuage the bigots own feelings of inadequacy than anything else. They will claim a noble cause, they will claim a kind of morality and ‘selflessness,’ that centers around their good intentions- and thus drawing a line in the sand. ‘Agree with us and you are good. Disagree with us and you are evil.’

In Selfless Narcissism, The Political Left And The Betrayal Of The Good, Dr Sanity clearly defines and differentiates the selflessness that elevates man, from the selflessness that is toxic and destructive. By way of example, Dr Sanity uses a classic scene scene from the film, The Bridge on the River Kwai, to illustrate her point.

Colonel Nicholson becomes so narcissistically invested in the Bridge and his role in creating the structure, that he loses all perspective of the larger picture and ends up betraying his country and the very values he believed he was supporting by working with his captors. The moment when he suddenly realizes that his commitment to an abstract ideal has led him and his fellow POWs down the path of betrayal is the climax of the movie…

There are two kinds of “selflessness”. One derives from the humility and insight that comes when both the grandiose and idealistic sides of the self work together. This psychological synthesis leads to true benevolence and is psychologically healthy for both the individual and the society in which they live. And then there is the kind of narcissistic and self-serving “selflessness” we see regularly displayed by the thoughtless, irresponsible, and destructively pandering Democrats (and many Republicans for that matter–what ties them together is that they act only out selfish interest, but despicably disguise it as selfless); as well as most of the morally righteous, posturing members of the political left; whose self-aggrandizing antiwar antics only lead to prolonging war and increasing the number of deaths as their own fanaticism serves to inspire and encourage the fanatical jihadists. Those jihadists must be rolling on the floor laughing, as they prepare their next suicide attack against the troops.

Pelosi trots out Tom Lantos as her “moral authority” because he happens to be a Holocaust survivor. Indeed, the Holocaust is a good moral lesson to learn from, particularly since the very people that Pelosi et. al. want to negotiate and have tea with are actively planning the next big one. But, like Pelosi, Lantos’ supposed ’selflessness’ in this matter is self-serving and driven by his own hubris.

If you want to tap into some real moral authority regarding the Holocaust, then you should look to someone like Elie Wiesel who truly speaks for the dead of WWII’s Holocaust. When he is asked, if he can personally forgive those who perpetrated the Holocaust:

“It depends. If it were an individual person, of course I could. One person coming up. But for the whole . . . Who am I to forgive?

Later, when talking about the jihadists, Weisel notes:

Fanaticism in the name of God is a real problem now, with the jihadists . . . Those people who kill for God make God into their accomplice, an accomplice to murder.”

It is very easy to get caught up in the narcissism and selflessness of the toxic kind. The destiny of the covert bigots, those who wrap themselves in the ‘blankies’ of their own phony self esteem. They are failures, with no sensibilities or grasp of reality. Willingly, they fell under the spell of hate and racism and then basked in it.

Anne, the author of People’s Geography, is one such bigot. Like all covert bigots, she sees those who disagree with her, or point out the obvious flaws in her bigoted ideology, as inferior (‘dhimmi,’ if you will- tolerated, but reviled and inferior). She spends as much time pretending to be mainstream or defending as her bigotry as mainstream, as she does promoting her bigotry. As we have noted in more than one occasion, she is the proverbial ape in a tuxedo, mimicking civilized behavior, furiously dancing in the hopes that no one will recognize her bigotry and deceit. She seems to be truly unaware that the only ones who believe that a tuxedo will camouflage the truth, are the apes themselves.

Healthy people do not regard bigots with any great affection. The only people that accept dysfunction as healthy are other other very dysfunctional people. In fact, they need each other to validate their pathologies.

In the insightful Pied Piper of Palestine, Neo-neocon highlights the dysfunction of a society that deliberately uses children as fodder to serve a political purpose. That very deliberate kind of child abuse is camouflaged as appropriate religious fervor (in the same way Anne camouflages dysfunctional and racist behaviors):

These children do not get the idea to do this all on their own. Martyrdom is not a natural youthful aspiration, but the plasticity and vulnerability of the very young can be exploited to mold many of them in just that direction, much in the way advertising works to form habits.

There is a concerted effort in many parts of the Arab world–and, most particularly, among the Palestinians–to glorify martyrdom in such a way that it specifically appeals to children. There’s nothing subtle or hidden about this campaign, which uses modern media tools in a most effective manner. It’s another example of the pernicious power of the wedding of new technology with a medieval mindset.

Here’s a description of the way it worked for the Vietcong:

A member of the Viet Cong would later confirm that: “Children were trained to throw grenades, not only for the terror factor, but so the government or American soldiers would have to shoot them. Then the Americans feel very ashamed. And they blame themselves and call their soldiers war criminals.” It was not rare for small children to wave an American patrol into a booby trap or minefield. Additionally, the Viet Cong would use women and children as lethal ploys or ruses to lead Americans into deadly ambushes.

A rational and civilized person would see the situation for what it is. A desperate bigot would will rationalize and attempt to divert attention away from the obvious- because in acknowledging obvious realities, they have to acknowledge their own failures. To a bigot or anyone with with clear psychopathies, that is intolerable. To see that the emperor they worship has no clothes is for them, catastrophic, because they cannot tolerate the truths that expose them. For example, supposedly ‘liberal’ and ‘progressive’ ideologies are ferociously adamant in their support of the Palestinian and Arab causes, notwithstanding the openly misogynistic, anti gay and racist ideologies they espouse. They cannot repudiate those agendas, because to do so would be to admit that their supposed ‘liberal’ and ‘progressive’ ideologies are a facade. Their primary interests lie in their own gratification and self aggrandizement. Violence against gays, women and minorities is acceptable as long as it takes place far away. The moment someone speaks in away they don’t like, they work themselves into a frenzy. To attack an unknown in a faraway place is acceptable- to attack their ideas is to unleash an irrational and even violent fury.

The process is escalatory in nature- each revelation of reality has to result in an even greater denial. As with every psychopathology, if left untreated, the psychopathology escalates, until it is virtually out of control.

Why does Anne of People’s Geography and others like her embrace bigotry? There are many answers, but in the end, the answer is found in the definition of psychopathy.

While there are many clinical definitions for ‘psychopath,’ one of the clearest definitions of a ‘psychopath‘ is anyone with a deficient conscience. It doesn’t matter how the deficiency is arrived at. If a person’s conscience is deficient, chances are psychopathic behavior is in the picture.

For example, to a psychopath, ‘guilt’ has no meaning other than as a tool to manipulate others. The impact of that psychopathy is directly related to the amount of influence the psychopathic person has upon others. ‘Guilt‘ has no personal meaning to the psychopath.

Anne and her ilk do not feel any guilt whatsoever in their own deceit, bigotry and hate, nor do they feel guilt in their attempts to manipulate others with that same deceit, bigotry and hate. They want to persuade you to adopt their ideologies because in doing so, they have exerted control over you.

Anne is hardly alone- nor is it our intent to elevate Anne into someone relevant. Clearly, she is adept at what she does, but so is any good gardener or baker. In the universe of bigots, she remarkably unremarkable.

We are in the midst of an Age of Psychopathy and it is the times that give Anne a platform. For her, and others of her ilk, ‘guilt’ is a dirty word or irrelevant, except as a tool to manipulate others. Guilt about hurting others does not seem to be enough to stop the psychopath from trying to get his or her way. Guiltless exploitation and exercise of power brings pleasure to the psychopath. It matters little what the cause is- ‘professional’ protesters concern themselves only with themselves, rather than any one cause. They can eco-conscious one week, animal rights supporters the next and pro Palestinian supporters the week after that. As long as they are at center stage, as they are perceived as a ‘martyr for the cause’ and as long as they espouse any ideology that holds anyone responsible or accountable, they are ‘happy in their work.’ In their world, everyone is equal, every culture is equal and every ideology has equal merit- unless of course, you are white, American, Israeli/Jewish and espouse democratic principles- then you are irreparably evil.

This kind of broken thinking is more than relevant, because this kind of thinking allows for the real perversion of reality.

For example, in Israeli Funding For Hamas And Making it Simple For SC&A, Anne promotes the idea that it Israel that is responsible for the Hamas debacle we see today:

…according to several current and former U.S. intelligence officials, beginning in the late 1970s, Israel gave direct and indirect financial aid to Hamas over a period of years. How unsurprising to some of us that a terrorist state would support what it calls a terror organization.

Israel’s support for Hamas “was a direct attempt to divide and dilute support for a strong, secular PLO by using a competing religious alternative,” according to a former senior CIA official interviewed by Richard Sale of UPI.

Anne’s deceit is predictable and tiredly unremarkable.

Even if the reports (they remain unsubstantiated) are accurate, so what? Israel had every right to defend itself from Arafat’s murderous and corrupt Fatah. Indeed, Israels first obligations are to do whatever is necessary to defend her citizens from vicious attack. If they cut a deal with Hamas, so what?

We gave Osama bin Laden weapons to fight the Russians. That he decided to turn and point those weapons at us was his decision. We gave Saddam, among dozens of others in different nations, chemical precursors to be used in pesticide research. That he decided t0 use those precursors and develop the gas that used against the Kurds was his decision. That Israel cut a deal with Hamas to deal with Fatah, and then Hamas decided to go after the Israelis, was a decision made by Hamas.

If you are given a car to go to work and then decide to drink, drive and end up killing someone, don’t blame your problem on whoever gave you the car.

That is the logic and deceit employed by the bigots. The attempt to distort, evade and dismiss are paramount and all the while, the psychopathy escalates.

The most volatile regional issues in the Arab world are religious and not political in nature.

The most horrible of crimes in Algeria, including the rape and dismemberment of children, were the result of purported religious dedication.

The civil war in Lebanon ended after 14 years of bloodshed, with no real resolution between the Christian and Muslim communities there.

Egyptian discrimination against the Copts went from a generations long simmer to a violent boil in the 1990’s and continues on today.

Saddam made no secret in his excesses against the Shia and Kurds, resulting in over a million deaths.

Former Syrian president Hafez Assad, an Alawite, had 20,000-30,000 people slaughtered in Hama and more in other lesser known massacres.

Anne defends Hamas, an organization that revels in the chant, “Hamas! Hamas! Jews to the gas!,’ by furiously screaming that Israel and the Palestinians are moral equals. Two UN Secretary Generals have decried their own organization’s Human Rights Commission as bigoted- and yet Anne and company pretend to be unaware of that reality and all it implies.

We noted that Adolph Hitler too, was democratically elected. Had free European nations boycotted or even eliminated the Nazi leadership, 50 million lives would have been spared. We are under no obligation to recognize or support any regime, even if democratically elected, that promises ‘rivers of blood.’

We have also noted that the Nazis attempted to hide their evil intentions. Hamas cannot be bothered- and for good reason. The Nazi ideology was not fully known or understood by the Germans until after Hitler was in power. Hamas has never made a secret of it’s ideologies and beliefs that have espoused hate, racism, bigotry and violence. The Palestinians that voted for Hamas knew exactly what and who they were voting for. They made very clear who and what they are, as do the Arab nations that support Hamas.

The facade of democracy is not the equal of democracy. A society for whom terror is an acceptable form of political expression will inevitably have to deal with violence. Along the same lines, a society that consumes, as opposed to a society creates, is not the same as a productive society. A society that builds is not the same as a society that destroys. As we watch Hamas executes their opponents, it becomes painfully clear that their ‘democratic elections’ mean nothing- the emperor has no clothes. They are the same barbaric and ruthless thugs they have always been.

We have noted before that,

In our world, environment helps to shape values. The values found in free societies are very different than the values taught in dysfunctional, oppressive and repressive regimes.

The values of free societies are passed on to free citizens. We engage in free dissent, debate, argue and we are free to challenge each other, our government and especially, ourselves. We are free to formulate our own opinions and if we wish, we are free to change those opinions.

The values of repressive and dysfunctional societies become the values of citizens living in those societies. Subjugation, repression and hate are a part of everyday life in those societies.

When we compare the values of the western free societies with the dysfunctional and oppressive values that are force fed in the Arab world, we have to ask ourselves…

‘The Arab world see the rejection of their values as a rejection of themselves- they do not see or understand that by rejecting the ugly values they have had forced upon them, they can only elevate themselves.’

In the end, we asked Anne a simple question, one that she has gone great lengths to avoid. Peace in the region is achievable at a moments notice.

* Cessation of hostilities and terror
* Secure borders.
* Diplomatic recognition of Israel.

Those are the minimum requirements as noted by Israel, the UN, the US, and the EU.

Which of those requirements are too onerous?

The failed and dysfunctional Palestinians and Arab world has become a place of refuge for Anne and thousand bigots like her.

What a waste.

Hamas Political Platform

June 20, 2007


The SC&A Academy of Extremely Peculiar Pathologies, is pleased to announce this week’s winners of the Weekly Wednesday Whackjob Awards, commonly referred to as the ‘Whacky’s.’

First, some fine print: nominations will open each week until 10:00 PM, EST (After the broadcast of House, M.D.-sadly, now into summer reruns).

That’s it for the fine print.

The directors of the SC&A Institute are pleased to announce this week’s winners of the Whacky Awards are examples of nut jobs, whack jobs and people with way too much time on their hands.
This week’s show is being broadcast from the Mellaril Test Facility, a fine institution where world class scientists bet on who can induce Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome the fastest. Whoever said science wasn’t fun?

A ‘Whacky‘ has been been awarded this week in each of the following categories:

The Thorazine Shuffle and Dance Award, presented each week to the politician who dances and shuffles without actually addressing reality or answering a question, is presented to Jimmy Carter and those of similar ilk (who embrace his kind of thinking sans the surreptitious Arab oil money) who refer to the American and EU refusal to accept the Hamas government was ‘criminal.’

Far from encouraging Hamas’ move into parliamentary politics, Carter said the U.S. and Israel, with European Union acquiescence, sought to subvert the outcome by shunning Hamas and helping Abbas to keep the reins of political and military power.

“That action was criminal,” he said in a news conference after his speech.

Yes, western nations should be supporting racist and corrupt regimes that refuse to renounce violence and who continue to escalate bigotry.

As we have noted many times, Adolph Hitler too, was democratically elected. Had free European nations boycotted or even eliminated the Nazi leadership, 50 million lives would have been spared. We are under no obligation to recognize or support any regime, even if democratically elected, that promises ‘rivers of blood.’

We have also noted that the Nazis attempted to hide their evil intentions. Hamas cannot be bothered- and for good reason. The Nazi ideology was not fully known or understood by the Germans until after Hitler was in power. Hamas has never made a secret of it’s ideologies and beliefs that have espoused hate, racism, bigotry and violence. The Palestinians that voted for Hamas knew exactly what and who they were voting for. They made very clear who and what they are, as do the Arab nations that support Hamas.

Not only does Israel have every right to reject Hamas, they are well within their rights to vigorously root out and eliminate those who threaten her very existence.

Of course, it isn’t just Carter that is unmasked in his duplicity. Cal Thomas notes of Hamas, et al,

…their objectives are identical: the annihilation of the democratic Jewish state and the elimination of all Jews, either by death or displacement, from the land. To argue otherwise and to continue believing the fiction that “infidel” diplomats from the State Department or European Union can magically transform people commanded to hate Jews and Israel based on a twisted mandate from their corrupt notion of God, is to be in extreme denial.

The proof is in the pudding, notwithstanding the bigoted drivel posited by those who claim to stand for justice (see this and this for examples) and at the same time need to engage in deceit. “Oh, Israel is at fault. Hamas recognizes Israel,” or “There is no institutionalized hate in the Palestinian territories or the Arab world.”

We asked one such mindless bigot, masquerading as ‘seeker of justice’ a few simple questions. We wanted to know how she could support Hamas given their blatant antisemitism, adoption of the ‘Protocols’ and racist hate taught in their schools and broadcast from media and pulpits (her response was that we were the bigots!). We also noted

In the final analysis, peace in the region is around the corner.

* Cessation of hostilities and terror
* Secure borders.
* Diplomatic recognition of Israel.

Those are the minimum requirements as noted by Israel, the UN, the US, and the EU.

Which of those requirements are too onerous for the Palestinians?

Sadly, that question proved to be too much of an affront and outrage for the ape in the tuxedo. In the end, asking a bigot to opine Middle East peace is like asking a whore to opine on family values.

This week’s Thomas Szasz Psychotherapy Award, presented each week to the biggest idiot therapists we can find, goes to the American media that has whipped us into a near frenzy when it comes to young children and online safety. As it turns out, the numbers are clear. While online safety for young people needs to always be a priority, the fact is that it’s people the kids know and not strangers that turn out to be the real problem. See this and this.

The Valium Award, presented to the dullard of the week goes to writer Nicholas Lezard who when suffering writer’s block, appropriated the Vatican’s 10 Commandments for Drivers. The following are a few selected Lezard Commandments.

4. Thy children shall not ask “are we there yet?” two minutes after thou hast driven off from home, and every three minutes thereafter, all the way to Devon. For lo, it is sorely vexing.

6. Thy children will shut up back there for thou art trying to drive.

9. Thou shalt not write “I wish my girlfriend was as dirty as this” in the dust of the back of a van, for (a) it is not funny any more, and (b) thy children shall ask what that meanest, and thou shalt have no convincing explanation.

The Trojan Award is presented each week to the person or persons we wish had never been born. This week’s award goes to an PETA Junior Achievement member, Oregon chapter:

A Corvallis teenager has been arrested after a surveillance camera captured him preparing to sexually abuse a horse inside a barn.

The owners of the barn installed the camera after reporting an assault on the horse last summer. When they checked the video, they saw a young man sexually assaulting the horse.

An unidentified PETA spokesperson issued a cautionary warning.

“By what right can we interfere with love?”

You just can’t make this stuff up.

The men heard in the film are remarkably honest about their motivations. One of them argues “mammal to mammal” love should not be seen as wrong.

Another firmly rejects the tag “bad person” his employer lays upon him before he is sacked. They all say the horses were willing participants.

The NutriSystem “I’m Not So disgusting to My Spouse Anymore” Award, goes to the biggest loser of the week. This week the prize is awarded to Mokhtar Mohamad Noor. He took his wife to a Shaman healer and then was outraged at the quality of ‘medical treatment.’

…a teacher who wanted his sick wife to be cured, said the healer gave his wife a drink and spoke an incantation before she and some male followers in their 20s and 30s started dancing in the nude, the Star newspaper reported.”She kept muttering unintelligible incantations which sounded like the singing of Koranic verses,” Mokhtar said, adding that the woman sat under a yellow umbrella and the dance continued before he left with his wife, tired of the group’s antics.

The bomoh, or shaman, whom some superstitious Malaysians believe can call on spirits to assist in curative rituals, is based in the city of Kota Baru, Kelantan state.

“I want the state religious affairs department to take stern action against the bomoh whose healing practice is against Islamic teachings,” the Star quoted a neighbour, Fuzi Nor, as saying.

Malaysia is a relatively modern and relaxed Muslim country where about 40 percent of the population is non-Muslim, but authorities in Kelantan, which is ruled by an opposition Islamist party, frown on departures from Koranic injunctions.

Apparently, the use of Koranic incantaions by nude, dancing Shamans is problematic. Had the healer just stick to Shamanology, everything would have been fine.

Don’t you just hate it when specialists dabble in areas of expertise outside their own?

The Haldol Honor, awarded each week to the person or persons most out of touch with reality, goes to Shiv Charan Yadav.

The 73-year-old Indian farmer has been taking – and failing – his high school exams every year since 1969 and has just flunked again for the 38th time.

He has vowed not to get married until he passes the exams, which are normally given to schoolchildren at the age of 15.

In his latest attempt he failed in every subject apart from Sanskrit, scoring just 103 out of a possible 600 points.

He said he found mathematics particularly hard, blaming the subject for draggnig down his score.

“Once I pass I want to get married to a girl who’s under 30,” said Yadav.

He is now revising for his 39th attempt next year.

The Methamphetamine Medal, awarded each week to the most hyper, histrionic, hysterical, spaced out documented behavior is shared by two most deserving idiots. Troy Newman, president of the Wichita-based anti-abortion group Operation Rescue and Rep. Vaughn Flora, Topeka Democrat:

An anti-abortion protester is suing a legislator who was fined for assaulting the cockroach-costumed protester at last year’s Kansas State Fair.Troy Newman, president of the Wichita-based anti-abortion group Operation Rescue, alleges that Rep. Vaughn Flora, Topeka Democrat, violated his free speech rights. The lawsuit, which calls Flora’s conduct “socially outrageous, politically oppressive and beyond the bounds of decency which a civilized society should tolerate,”

Our great nation is blessed with a bounty of idiots.

The Viagra Statuette, (male or female), is awarded to two gay and lesbian gangs.

The victim, a 15-year-old boy, was waiting at the bus shelter area on the night of May 19 after an earlier fight with members of a rival gang, officials said. He told investigators that he was attacked by six members of the rival gang, including a woman who allegedly stabbed him four times and another person who hit him in the head with a stiletto heel.

While it obvious the kind of damage stiletto can inflict, activists are starting a campaign to raise awareness the danger flats, pumps, and sandals can inflict. A study examining the potential hazards of flip flops was inconclusive.

The ECT Battery Award, presented to the most shocking news story of the week, goes to an idiot 16 year old.

A 16-year-old Berlin student was so worried he would have to repeat a year at school because of poor marks he convinced two friends to storm his class and steal the report cards with his bad grades.“The student probably honestly believed that he could avoid repeating the school year if he made the report cards disappear,” said a spokesman for local police Monday.

The youth sat quietly at the back of the classroom as the two masked robbers, aged 14 and 15, burst in and threatened his teacher with a steel bar if she did not hand over the reports.

After grabbing them, the two tried to flee but dropped the reports as other students leapt to defend the teacher. The two were arrested close to the school, and told police their friend had devised the raid

The good news is while the student received poor grades in his academic subjects, he received high grades in Multicultural Studies, Wiccan Studies, Shamanology and a literature class referred to as ‘The Misunderstood Poetry of Pol Pot, Che, Stalin, Arafat and Hitler.’

Finally, The HRT (Hormone Replacement Therapy) Prize is awarded to the administrators and producers of the Miss Spain Pageant.

The Miss Spain beauty contest has changed its rules to allow transsexuals and mothers to compete for the title for the first time in order to avoid any discrimination among candidates, organizers said Friday.

“Transsexuals and mothers will be able to compete in the next edition,” an organizer of the Miss and Mister Spain contest told AFP.

They decided to change the rules as well to allow transsexuals to compete in both the Miss and Mister Spain contest in the wake of a new law which came into effect in March that allows transsexuals to change their name and official gender without the need for a surgical operation.

Spanish pageant officials are working out the rules that will govern the ‘bulge’ competition.The Miss Spain pageant orchestra is reworking their opening musical number to to include a selection from the baritone ensemble.

Now while we’re on the topic of crazy, be sure to visit the latest Dr Sanity Carnival Of The Insanities for more bizarre, arcane, insane and incredible examples of what can be found in the whackosphere, blogosphere, MSM and NASA.

There is a thin line between genius and insanity. I have erased this line.”- Oscar Levant

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