Strange place Sweden. At one time the country a beacon of progressive harmony, today a nation destroying itself on the altar of multicultural chaos. The attitude of Church and state to Christianity has drastically altered in recent years.
In the British sit com Dad’s Army Private Fraser, the gloomy Scottish undertaker, has a catch phrase, ‘We’re doomed’.
It is easy to despair and think that we are doomed and that progressives have taken over the Western world.
Our media is painfully politically correct and relentlessly pushes a progressive agenda. If politicians utter a word out of line they are quickly brought to heel by a braying Twitter mob. When students demand safe spaces and trigger warnings and university authorities hasten to appease them it’s apparent our universities have become havens of progressivism.
Does this mean that progressivism has won the day? Not necessarily. If you succeed in shutting down public debate it could mean that you have won. It could also mean that you are well on the way to losing. Continue reading “ARE WE DOOMED?”→
How we think shapes what we think and what we think shapes what we do. The profound cultural changes which have occurred in the West are to a significant extent shaped by the gradual emergence of post-modern deconstruction as the predominant way of thinking being taught and practiced throughout education and the media. In this video we explore the effects of deconstruction.
The very idea of truth in itself has been rejected, leaving only language power plays which are supposedly the tools of oppression. Free speech is shut down, marriage and the family are seen as oppresive structures, individual responsibility is denigrated and the Christian faith which built Western civilisation is shoved into a corner of the public square as an excentric private hobby. Until we become aware of the weapons being used against traditional cultural virtues and practices we will never be able to counter them.
As soon as someone starts praising multiculturalism it’s time to put your headphones back on and return to watching fluffy kittens on YouTube.
Multiculturalism is not about exotic restaurants and musical variety. It is code for moral relativism. It is built on the notion that all ideas and systems are equal, which results in precluding a willingness to think critically about what surrounds us. All cultures differ, but not all cultures are equal, just as all religions differ, but are not equal. Perhaps YouTube is full of videos of Buddhists beheading captives and Quaker suicide bombers, but it is doubtful.
Multiculturalism is a progressive affectation which means something entirely different from what it says on the tin. It is most assuredly not about the comparison and evaluation of a multitude of differing cultures. It is about proclaiming the risible idea of the equal value and validity of all cultures.
For the upholders of multiculturalism it is more of a shibboleth, a code word to separate themselves from the great unwashed, than a belief they actually practice. Just as leaders of soviet communism paid lip service to an equality they did not practice so the proponents of multiculturalism do not actually believe in multiculturalism enough to practice it. Going to a Thai restaurant and having a Filipina nanny is not multiculturalism, it is gourmet grazing and taking advantage of cheap labour, like any capitalist.
Most rational people want to live in an advanced, free Western society, that is why many Somalians risk their lives to get in to Sweden and few Swedes emigrate to Somalia. When it comes to reality few multiculturalists actually choose to abandon a society ruled by common law where they enjoy the fruits of Western scientific progress, to live in a backward failed state ruled by Sharia based tribal law. To assert the superiority of Western values is to state the obvious.
One of the most socially influential of Christian doctrines is that of the Image of God, which teaches that every individual, no matter their race, social standing or background, is of equal value to God. It is in those cultures most influenced by Christianity that individual freedom is most valued and where individual endeavour is most encouraged, to the benefit of all. When this is allied to the doctrine of Creation and our responsibility for its exploration it is clear why it is no accident that science and technology have advanced in the West in a way in which they have not elsewhere.
Western values are fundamental universal values. If we are reluctant to speak up for universal rights, if we fail to say that they should be enjoyed by others in cultures where they are trampled, then we consign those others to a life which we would unhesitatingly reject for ourselves or our children. This is racist, saying in effect, that these values are only for we in the West but it would be wrong to ‘impose’ them on others.
Immigrants to the West in particular should be suspicious of standards which imply that they are too simple minded or backward to become part of their new country and should remain in their Somali or Bangladeshi cocoon whilst living in Europe or North America. Multiculturalism is an open door to the racism of lowered expectations. Instead of giving us the best of all worlds multiculturalism all too often gives us the worst of all worlds; the worst attributes of Muslim culture, the subjugation of women, combined with the worst attributes of western culture, license and self-gratification.
Multiculturalism reinforces that which it purports to abolish, the isolation of people because of their race. By defining society as a conglomeration of groups with differing characteristics which must be equally celebrated society becomes ghettoised into special interest groups. Individuals with their own unique characteristics, abilities and talents are eclipsed, instead we are isolated and defined by our group, the colour of our skin, our country of origin or our religion.
Multiculturalism has the effect, not of bringing us together in mutual appreciation of our differences, but of assuring people that because of their colour, gender or sexual preferences they can never be truly understood or valued by others, and that any evaluation of their practices can never be legitimate.
The multiculturalist is unable to assess religions by any absolute standard, to do so would supposedly be judgemental and result in an expression of Western power and privilege. The intellectually bankrupt concept of moral relativism leads multiculturalists to see literal Muslims, those who practice what they read in the Koran and do what Muhammad did, as the Muslim equivalent of fundamentalists in any other religion. This leads to the insanity of proposed moral equivalence between the squalid ravings of Westboro Baptist Church and the plague of suicide bombings inflicted on the entire world by literal Muslims.
When the British in India banned the Hindu practice of suttee, or burning widows alive on the funeral pyre of their husbands, some Hindu priests complained to General Sir Charles Napier. His reply was succinct: ‘Be it so. This burning of widows is your custom; prepare the funeral pile. But my nation has also a custom. When men burn women alive we hang them, and confiscate all their property. My carpenters shall therefore erect gibbets on which to hang all concerned when the widow is consumed. Let us all act according to national customs.’
Napier knew that not all cultural practices are of equal value. Female genital mutilation may be a cultural practice amongst many immigrant communities in the UK today. It is also a barbaric cultural practice and should be stamped out unhesitatingly. Although technically illegal in multicultural UK it is estimated that there are 66,000 women in Britain who have undergone this practice and 24,000 girls under 15 years old at risk. Someone always pays the price for progressive dogma.
People are weird. We do the craziest things, often fall in love with the most unsuitable people.
We can perhaps understand, often through bitter experience, how this can happen to normal, well adjusted people like us, and we know it hurts. But what about when it happens to significant masses of people?
How do we explain the bizarre behaviour of many well meaning, soft hearted liberals and progressives.
Eighty years ago millions of Germans, especially German women, threw flowers and themselves at the feet of one of the vilest men to have lived, Adolph Hitler. In 1953 when Stalin died the commonest reaction was not joyous relief that the vicious monster was dead, but genuine tears of sorrow.
They were brainwashed we respond, inundated with propaganda for years. We are too familiar with the techniques of mass persuasion to be fooled like that. We are sophisticated, educated, discerning people, up to the tricks and whiles of those who would manipulate us.
The aging adolescents of the Left may still idolise such ghastly creatures as the racist, misogynist Che Guevara; or still believe that last century’s greatest mass murderer Mao was misunderstood and had his good side. But we have learned the lessons of history. They may still pine for the days when they marched carrying Viet Cong flags and waved little red books, but we know better.
Yet we find today’s progressive Left marching arm in arm with anti-Semitic militants and pro-jihadis who threaten the destruction of western liberal democracy. Gay solidarity groups come out in support of the speeches of radical Muslim clerics, who if they were back home would not hesitate to stone any homosexual straying across their path. Feminists march alongside men who denigrate women and would put them into burqas and force FGM on them. Strident Socialists argue the case for people who would ban trade unions.
The progressive Left is, and always has been, largely populated with romantics, often of a racist hue.
18th century sentimentalism gave credence to the idea of the noble savage, the man and woman uncorrupted by civilisation with greater and deeper values than those of pressurised Western society. The French of course played a large part in this, though for once we can’t blame Rousseau. It was Cartier and Montaigne who wrote of le bon savauge. For them clearly the Fall had never occurred. If we ignore Scripture we always end up to our eyes in problems.
The English as usual were a wee bit more hard headed, at the same time as some were romanticising man in a state of nature Hobbes was writing of the state of nature being a ‘war of all against all’ in which lives were ‘solitary, poore, nasty, brutish and short’. Hardly rose-tinted but more accurate than the picture painted by the sentimental romantics of American Indians living in peaceful bliss, at one with nature and each other. A view assiduously perpetuated by Hollywood and media in films such as the multi-Oscar winning ‘Dances With Wolves’.
Our modern day romantics share the same sentimental bias. In the sixties wisdom was supposedly to be found in charlatans such as Guru Maharaji and Bhagwan Shree Rajnesh. The ideology which gave birth to the modern world was to be shunned in favour of the ideologies which kept huge swathes of the Third World in poverty, racked by disease and famine, and ruled by corrupt governments. As long as it came from the East and differed from what was known it got a free pass from questioning scrutiny.
Today the romantic revolutionaries give a free pass to the ‘freedom fighters’ of Hamas and Hizbullah, the ‘vibrant multi-cultural’ communities who live in the West whilst rejecting the West, and any expression of anti-Semitic bigotry. It is to such favoured groups that they apply the racism of lower expectations. Expecting lower standards of behaviour and discourse from non-Western ethnic groups and ideologies is deeply racist.
We even find well meaning liberal progressives such as George Monbiot and Prof Lisa Jardine comparing the young men and women from the West who go to Syria to join in jihad, sometimes with ISIS, with the men and women who travelled to Spain in the thirties to fight Franco. The volunteers with the International Brigades, and others who went to fight Franco, went to support a legitimate government in its struggle against a vicious fascist military junta. Our present day jihadists go to support a vicious fascist military junta in its struggle against established regimes.
Our romantics refuse to learn the lesson of history. In 1979 a coalition consisting of the Iranian Communist Party, the Marxist Fedayeen Organisation, and hardline Islamists led by Ayatollah Khomeini ousted the Shah, killed his functionaries and established a new regime hailed by progressives as a huge step forward. The regime then began to imprison, torture, shoot and hang their one time comrades.
Our sentimental progressive romantics should learn the lesson of history. Love affairs with the unsuitable invariably end badly.
When we look at the widespread and growing persecution of Christians throughout the world we find that prominent amongst the enablers are Western governments, and foremost amongst them is the UK.
The 2014 World Watch List ranks the 50 nations where the greatest persecution of Christians occurs. They are designated as perpetrating ‘extreme’, ‘severe’, ‘moderate’, and ‘sparse’ persecution. Naturally enough North Korea gains top spot. Let’s face reality, it is difficult to compete with a country run by a bunch of communist gangsters as crazy as a box of frogs on steroids. North Korea is an aberration by anyone’s standards, who could beat them?
Give them their due Muslim countries have a jolly good try. After North Korea you have to go some way down to find a persecuting country which is not Muslim majority. Of the 50 worst nations for persecution, 37 of them or 74%, are Muslim. In the 13 other countries, even in Christian majority countries such as the Central African Republic, those doing the persecuting tend to be Muslim.
One can only suppose the reason a report on the widespread persecution of Christians in Muslim countries was largely ignored by the media was because it is a commonplace fact that Muslims persecute Christians, not news at all. What other reason could there possibly be?
Interestingly for our Western governments Syria comes in third place, followed by Iraq in fourth and Afghanistan in fifth. Libya crawls in at 13th. All four countries receive the strongest designation ‘extreme persecution’.
In three of these persecuting nations, Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya the British government has been active in either creating or supporting the regimes which are persecuting Christians or allowing persecution to take place unhindered. In the case of Syria it was only a rare bout of common sense in the House of Commons following public outcry which prevented David Cameron and William Hague from linking the UK even more closely with the ‘freedom fighters’ against the regime, many of whom are more deserving of the label ‘terrorist’.
Open Doors, a non-denominational group supporting persecuted Christians worldwide, says that in 2013 it documented 2,123 ‘martyr’ killings, compared with 1,201 in 2012. There were 1,213 such deaths in Syria alone last year. ‘This is a very minimal count based on what has been reported in the media and we can confirm,’ said Frans Veerman, head of research for Open Doors. Estimates by other Christian groups put the annual figure as high as 8,000.
As a result of the activities of terrorist groupings, Syria a country which was once religiously tolerant, is now in the top three for the extreme persecution of Christians. Amongst Muslim nations only Somalia, the very definition of a failed state, ranks higher as a persecutor of Christians.
Even the slowest on the uptake should be aware by now that the supposed ‘Arab Spring’ so welcomed at the time by our elites has turned out to be less than billed and has failed to live up to its publicity. The unfortunate fact is that wherever Western powers have interfered in an Islamic nation, anti-Christian Islamists have come into power.
In Afghanistan the supposedly ‘moderate’ Karzai government, propped up by British and US service personnel, continues to enforce many of the laws initially imposed by the Taliban. The sharia based legislation includes an apostasy law which viciously persecutes any who convert to Christianity. In 2011, whilst British service personnel were dying and being maimed to maintain Afghanistan’s freedom from the Taliban the last Christian church in the country was deliberately destroyed with the connivance of Western governments.
In Lybia, where the UK dropped bombs in order to help overthrow the dictator Qaddafi and succeeded in installing al-Qaeda backed terrorists, churches have been bombed and Christians have been tortured and killed for refusing to convert. Christians have in large measure fled the country.
In Iraq, where Western service personnel died in a war to topple the dictator Saddam Hussein, it is estimated that a Christian is murdered every two to three days. Terrorist groups with a stated aim of ridding Iraq of Christians operate with impunity, and are succeeding.
We should not expect the elites controlling Western governments and media to have any sympathy for Christians or any other minorities persecuted in the Muslim world. They, however, would do well to remember that wherever anti-Christian factions gain power anti-Western factions also gain power. As religious intolerance grows so does anti-Western sentiment.
At least Islamists recognise what our elites fail to see, that Western civilisation was founded upon Christian principles.
It is possible that the objective of Western intervention, to democratise the Middle East, may yet be realised. Sadly to date democracy in the Middle East is proving less tolerant than the dictatorial regimes it has succeeded. Unfortunately it is highly likely that these democracies will evolve into bastions of intolerance and violence to a degree not seen since the Germany of the 1930’s.
It is questionable that these democracies will progress inevitably toward liberty and pluralism, as some naïve optimists continue to forecast. Rather, they are more likely to end in the ordered barbarism of our ally Saudi Arabia where, according to Amnesty International, legal punishments include beheading and crucifixion.
It is not often that this blog refers to Freud with approval. It does so today because Freud is an A List progressive guru. It is easy to see why. He taught that: 1. It is all about sex, 2. Your parents are to blame, 3. Religion screws people up. Freud therefore ticked all three of the most important boxes for the infantile progressive (please forgive the tautology).
Amongst the many ideas Freud dreamed up was that of narcissism, not just as an over healthy self-regard but as a developed pathology. This concept was later developed by Erich Fromm and Otto Kernberg into the personality disorder known as malignant narcissism.
Your common or garden narcissist bigs himself up, feels really good about himself, and thinks that the world is so much better because of his presence, just think of … (fill in the name of your favourite televangelist). He can love his wife and children and take thorns from the paws of animals, its just that he can also be snobby, inconsiderate and obnoxious. He is not, however, a conscienceless predator.
The malignant narcissist is a different kettle of neurosis. The malignant narcissist can only big himself up by tearing others down. He does not actually feel good about himself, rather he seeks to feel good about himself by demonstrating that others are worse than him. He thinks he can obtain grandeur by negative means, by taking it away from others. This is more than a personality trait, the malignant narcissist has a disordered, a dysfunctional personality.
Hurting people is not something the malignant narcissist does by accident, it is not an unintended consequence of well meaning actions: it is how the malignant narcissist lives.
They affirm themselves by denigrating others. An example of this widespread progressive tendency is the decision by Rotherham Borough Council to remove three children from foster parents because the carers were members of UKIP.
The couple, the husband works with disabled people the wife is a nursery nurse, have been foster parents for seven years, during this time they have cared for about a dozen children none of whom came to any harm. In an emergency placement the couple took on three children from a troubled family with a minority ethnic background, a baby girl, a boy and an older girl. The children thrived, the baby put on weight, the older girl began to call her foster parents Mum and Dad. Everyone was happy.
Except the Rotherham Borough Council that is. Cue shock and horror, they received an anonymous tip off that the foster parents were members of UKIP. UKIP are a mainstream political party which challenges the multicultural orthodoxy which rules in progressive thought, therefore they are racist, or so runs the progressive thinking of Rotherham Borough Council. If you dissent from his orthodoxy you are ipso facto evil to the progressive malignant narcissist.
The foster carers had been described as ‘exemplary.’ The children were thriving under their care. The children were happy. None of this mattered. The progressives had to step in and project themselves as defenders of the powerless.
This whole sad incident is not about the political attitudes of the foster parents, it is certainly not about the welfare of the children, it is about the self image of progressives. They can only feel good about themselves by pulling others down.
Progressivism is not just a cultural stance, it is not just a political philosophy. Progressivism is a pathology.