Thursday, 24 September 2009

What Must be Done (Updated)




When challenged as a ‘limp wristed liberal’, I found it interesting to think about what my political beliefs really are. What really struck me was how ‘politicians’ must be weirdoes: the idea that anyone could write a manifesto as anything but a practical joke to satirise their own pomposity.

Still, I thought I’d list my political opinions, which are extremely weird and will probably have changed by tomorrow.

1) I am a foreign policy isolationist. Unless it’s an ethnic group I like that’s in trouble. I’d intervene for them, mind, but no-one else. I’d tell the Turks that if any ethnic Greeks are harmed in Constantinople, or if any more Greek Cypriots are killed, they’d better find a cure for radiation poisoning by the next day. But aside from that, ‘humanitarian intervention’ is an idiot’s game (as for conflicts between ethnic groups I like, it just makes my head hurt thinking about it).

Instead of a 'war on terror' there would be a war of terror. Meaning that every type of paramilitary organisation would be legal and the professional army would only be allowed to defend a state's borders. For instance the 'muscular secular liberal' paramilitary would automatically draft Christopher Hitchens, Charles Johnson and Roger Simon. They'd be parachuted into Islamabad where they'd promptly be twatted with wooden blocks, dragged through the streets, dowsed with kerosene, set alight and fed to honey badgers. A great tragedy, I'm sure we'll all agree, but a price worth paying for the opportunity to have a practical role in the faith/ reason/ liberalism conflict. Overall, it would be the best thing for muscular secularism since 'Pajamas Media'.

Before I'm accused of hypocrisy, I'd join a Byzantine paramilitary in the blink of an eye, if they took on 5.6 asthmatics.

2) I oppose abortion. Generally I agree with the liberal left, but none of my left/ liberal buddies have yet given me a reason why an unborn child should not be regarded as a human being. Whilst they often claim to be scientific and rational, I notice that their rationality tends to disintegrate at this point. Yes, I know there are many complex issues (rape, incest, birth abnormalities, mother’s life in danger) yet these are a tiny minority of births and dictate people’s attitude to wide laws.

It is interesting that the social democratic revolution in Latin America does not seem to have changed their laws on these issues much.

3) Economically I am a Social Democrat who thinks the Franco-German model makes the most sense and is not as unstable or unjust as the Anglo-American plutocracies. Large industries should be under national ownership, though petit bourgeoisie capitalism should be given minimal taxation and even subsidised.

4) I believe in freedom of speech, though think that social liberalism has become a one way street that protects groups from legal discrimination, which is positive, but also suppresses freedom of speech. ‘Hate speech’ is generally a term used by crypto-fascists who want to take people’s freedom of expression away.

5) I’m for ending the false dichotomy between illegal and legal drugs. Legalise everything, but do not market anything. The war on drugs is a horrific fiasco which could see the collapse of Mexico, Guatamala and Honduras (and which is responsible for their huge homicide rate). There is no debate that these chemicals (unpleasant though they are: and I'm a guy who doesn't even take caffeine after mid afternoon) should be sold by private companies not gangsters.

6) I’m entirely in favour of private gun ownership. Again, this is an issue where I’d disagree with the liberal left, though except for the African-American community, America does not have a very high homicide rate, nor does Germany, France or Switzerland. To avoid being labelled a loonertarian (again), I would have a system whereby no man with a gun should be allowed to watch a romantic comedy or buy albums of love songs. I'm sure that would see the homicide rate flatline.

7) Treatment of the GLBT community should be democratic. If the general public approves of ‘civil unions’, that is their decision. If they do not, that is also their decision. It is not for the state to peep into people’s bedrooms, but it is not for the state to be a killjoy and deprive people of the right to make fun of those who’re different. Especially (incidentally) those Littlejohn/ Peter Hitchens Conservatives who make out that gays are going to come knocking on the door, or that they are victimised by gay propaganda: they're the greatest laughingstocks of the lot. As for the situation in Russia, it seems pretty dumb to want a Gay Pride event when the average Moscow citizen probably feels as much pride at their homicide/ STD rate as they do in their gay community. Still, it is all democratic.

8) I oppose the teaching of Intelligent Design/ creationism, though I also do not think that Darwinism is a perfect scientific theory. The world would adopt my concept of Protagoran materialism.

9) Saying I think banking should be regulated is now like saying I'm for free air, but it is something I’ve long believed in.

10) Job seeker allowance should be changed for a system that gives people an opportunity to work on a government project and use their skills, and meet people.

11) Phone/ internet monitoring and CCTV Surveillance must be abolished.

12) The EU must be replaced by another Euro-phile system based in Athens. This should adopt some of the many good ideas that America has (deregulation of small-scale businesses) whilst keeping European concepts of social justice.

Their first priority would be to create fraternity between the nations. This should encourage travelling and cooperative working, perhaps something similar to the Kibbutz system in Israel.

Their second priority should be to address the demographic catastrophe awaiting Europe.

13) Immigration from Islamic nations with a history of violent extremism (Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Algeria) should be restricted. Immigration from outside Europe should be based on skills and the job market.

14) Film censorship should be stopped and age categories should be moved from restrictions to recommendations. Promoting films will be open to censorship (really guys, I support the right to make ‘Saw’, but a sliced up head on the side of a bus?)

Conversely, I would limit TV stations to three hours of broadcasts a day.

15) Rights to insult everyone's religion, philosophy, race, gender, sexual orientation, job, physical appearance, income bracket, physical courage, mode of transport (etc) will be protected by law.

16) National Anthems are used to stir up boneheaded conflicts, so they would be replaced by pop songs, chosen by me. Scotland's National Anthem would be 'Sunshine of your Love', whilst England's would be 'Agadoo'. Unless they stop causing trouble with Russia, the Visegrad nations would be given a selection from 'Queen's Greatest Hits' with Poland getting 'Old Fashioned Lover Boy'.

17) Ancient Greek would become the Lingua Franca for Europe.

18) A fat tax would be put in place (can't think where I got that idea from). Not for those of us afflicted with bad glands, of course, but for fatty foods.

I’m used to being hated by conservatives and neo-liberals, though I shall now probably be unpopular with leftists and libertarians too. If you agree with me on more than half my points the chances are I’ve stolen some of your ideas and you’ll hate me anyway ;-).

7 comments:

  1. Of course, "limp-wristed liberal" is not necessarily a term of abuse. To a large extent I'm one myself. ;)

    Re-beliefs. The problem with classifying them is that a) should I approach things from the perspective of what is good for me personally, good for society, or good for national power? - in many cases the answers are going to be very different, and b) I abhor any universalist ideological template and believe that any policies should be tempered to the specifics of the culture in question. With those caveats:

    1) Isolationism = yes

    2) I don't mind abortion. Arguments to the contrary rely on the mystical concept of a fully-formed soul from conception, which as a quasi-atheist I don't subscribe to. From the neurological perspective, the foetus is equivalent to a lower life form. There's also research by Leavitt indicating granting abortion rights tends to decrease criminality after about 15 years, which is not surprising given the character of the people typically seeking abortions. I recognize that religious people approach this from a fundamentally different set of assumptions (which are neither inferior nor superior), and thus this is a divide that cannot be breached.

    3) I agree the commanding heights of the economy should be under state ownership, whereas business freedoms should be very relaxed for smaller ones.

    4) Yes

    5) Yes

    6) Yes. I'm always puzzled by the association of gun control with liberalism, considering that this is a freedom.

    7) Yes.

    8) Yes. As a neutral observer I think Darwinism is the best explanation, though of course one could give any number of postmodern-derived refutations of the theory.

    9) Not sure. It's OK to not regulate if you also refuse to bail them out under any circumstances.

    10) Yes. Or get rid of job seeker allowance and make-work government programs entirely. I do support government retraining programs, though, at least from the social point of view.

    11) Yes.

    12) Yes

    13) Yes

    14) Yes

    15) Yes

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  2. Hi Anatoly

    I did actually steal the Kibbutz idea from you, but aside from that I would not have expected that we'd agree on so much.

    Agree with your opening point. It is one thing to create laws in a nation like Norway, and another for a nation like the USA and another for a nation like China.

    Even if I were an atheist I would probably still oppose abortion. From a neurological point of view you could say that a sleeping person is on a very low level. Crime does have many causes, though it seems very low in Scandinavia.

    As for welfare, no mixed-economy nations have created full employment. Whenever the state tries to motivate people by cutting benefits it ususally results in an increase of crime, homelessness, drug/alcohol abuse, reduced life-expectency, etc. because businesses and governments do not create work for everyone.

    I think the best system would be getting people to develop skills and/or to be involved with agricultural projects.

    As for the banks, you may be right. I don't know enough about it frankly. I'd put the bailout on the NWO list of 'achievements'

    I think gun control is a slightly different issue from gun ownership. As John Milius demonstrated in Red Dawn, should there be a Latino blitzkreig against the USA, then government quislings could help the invaders pinpoint any weapons under the registration system.

    However, that is not a very likely scenario now. I do not think that anyone with a criminal record should be allowed a gun and I think all weapons should be registered. But I do think that people should be able to defend themselves both for psychological and practical reasons. The British gun laws are a gross violation of freedom and seem a prelude to the big brother state that followed.

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  3. I find the first point to be something that prevents me from stating any clear position on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I like the traditional Palestinian Christians and must say neither the Jews nor the Muslims do enough to protect them. In Bethlehem, Nazareth or in Gaza this ancient minority is having a hard time. The only place that is exception to the rule is the Holy Sepulchre, but that is to international. I am total non-interventionist therefore.

    With that gun ownership I must agree. The British policy of no guns is silly, it only fuels black market and gun crime still happens.

    I don't like the EU and believe it is digging its own grave by mindless expansion.

    The abortion is a problem but banning or limiting it would open a new avenue for the black market as any ban does. We must create conditions in which women would not think of abortions.

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  4. @Greg,

    Really hate to get into a debate on abortion, but a quick reply to the "so you'd kill a sleeping person?" argument.

    1) A sleeping person is not on a neurologically low level; it's just that much of it is temporarily dormant, but there is a close-to-100% probability it would be reactivated within 12 hours.

    2) A sleeping person is not parasitically dependent on anyone else's body for survival.

    3) Most importantly, there are no significant emotional repercussions to killing a foetus (apart from the mother, sometimes, but that is her choice). That is obviously not the case for most sleepers, unless they're vagrant orphans or something.

    PS. Link to Levitt's study - http://pricetheory.uchicago.edu/levitt/Papers/DonohueLevittTheImpactOfLegalized2001.pdf

    Re-welfare. It's true that there's an underclass comprising c.10-20% of the population in the US and Britain, which leads to significant costs in the form of police, prisons, etc. But the alternative is leeching off taxpayers. It's a difficult issue, and one very few advanced industrial nations have avoided in one form or the other.

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  5. @ Leos
    'I find the first point to be something that prevents me from stating any clear position on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I like the traditional Palestinian Christians and must say neither the Jews nor the Muslims do enough to protect them. In Bethlehem, Nazareth or in Gaza this ancient minority is having a hard time. The only place that is exception to the rule is the Holy Sepulchre, but that is to international. I am total non-interventionist therefore.'

    This is my least favourite political area of debate. But if the West decided to protect Christians they could force Israel to protect its Christian minority. From a totally amoral perspective, I find Israel a real disappointment. I'd have thought a people who'd produced so many great chess players would be far more politically astute (and interesting) than just depending upon indefinite American support (based partially on the declining Jewish American population and also on the largely anti-Semitic and batshit crazy Christian Zionists) whilst p***ing off the rest of the world and any potential allies in their own country. Still, being a great chess player does not stop one from being a political buffoon: look at brother Kasparov.

    'I don't like the EU and believe it is digging its own grave by mindless expansion.'

    Europe is a unique continent, and surprisingly homogeneous (both genetic and culturally): I think there should be an organisation to support this brother and siterhoodhood, especially given the looming demographic problems. Free trade and free immigration can be good things within Europe, but the Brussels bureaucracy has to go. Even putting it in Brussels is pretty weird, given that Belgium's only real global-political 'achievement' has been enslaving Africans. I think the birthplace of Pericles should be the centre of a new organisation with a greater emphasis on freedom.

    'The abortion is a problem but banning or limiting it would open a new avenue for the black market as any ban does. We must create conditions in which women would not think of abortions.'

    I think that would be impossible Leos. As an Orthodox Christian I oppose abortion in any circumstances, but I would not expect a democratic country to reach the same conclusion. Nor do I expect it to reach the same conclusion as the humanist freemasonic status quo that unborn children are like tapeworms.

    @Anatoly
    I am always grateful for your comments, but I think in these two cases we'll probably have to agree to disagree.

    As I said to Leos, I am an Orthodox Christian which forms my attitudes to many things.

    A great modern theologian, Fr John Romanithes said 'religion is a disease and Orthodoxy is the cure'. I agree with that, though I am sure that most believers would agree if they substituted their own faith for Orthodoxy. That is to say that I do not think that faith based arguments are valid, but I am not convinced by any secular arguments for abortion though I find there are compelling secular arguments to its opposition.

    Despite having tertiary education I was unemployed for a while. It just shows that the free market does not guarantee employment nor does the government (which now employs me to do fairly complex work).

    Still, given that jobseeker allowance is roughly £50 a week, which is equivalent to about ten hours minimum wage, I do not see why economic conservatives would object to the government employing people for ten hours as labourers, carers or cleaners?

    As I see it the strange paradox of neo-liberal conservatism is that they see subsidised unemployment as preferable to subsidised employment.

    Perhaps a type of bourgeoise communism is in order, with intense capitalism on a small level but a state that guarantees full employment?

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  6. Ad. abortion

    I don't agree with abortions for much the same reasons but do not find bans as politically realistic. There are other ways...

    There is a thing called the baby box in the Czech Republic where low income, usually drug addict moms or prostitutes can dump their infants anonymously. It sounds horrific but there were cases when such mothers dumped their children into a bin.

    This issue is so controversial it engenders many questions but one thing is clear these women for some reason kept their babies without having abortions.

    Being pro life is hard when you know life wouldn't be good to the infant. The second type are career women who are fully capable to take care of the baby but choose to abort for the sake of their careers. It is hard in our society which expounds gender equality, sexual liberation and other fallacies. I think there needs to be a spiritual revolution that would deal with this confusion.

    Anyway, last thing I would like to see is makeshift, mafia run, abortion clinics.

    Ad. Europe

    People of Europe may share linguistic and cultural similarities but they are still very different. There can be union that respects these differences perhaps but certainly not one that strives for a European supernation.

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  7. 'It is hard in our society which expounds gender equality, sexual liberation and other fallacies. I think there needs to be a spiritual revolution that would deal with this confusion.'

    I dislike the term 'gender equality' because it is very politically loaded. To say that women should be in the army or police is idiotic. But that is not to deny that they have gifts that men don't have: male primary school teachers/ nursery nurses make my skin crawl.

    There will be a spiritual revolution. But I cannot guarantee it will not be a satanic one.

    'People of Europe may share linguistic and cultural similarities but they are still very different. There can be union that respects these differences perhaps but certainly not one that strives for a European supernation.'

    When Europe has been divided it was conquered. Now is probably a unique window of opportunity to overcome these differences.

    Despite Stas Mishin's amusing article recently, I do not think America is anything like as vulnerable as it looks. Despite the large amount of left/right debate amongst Americans on the internet and elsewhere, Ron Paul, Pat Buchanan, George Nader and anyone else who stepped outside of the near indistinguishable R/D party lines has been ignored by the electorate.

    There are many features of the USA that we should avoid, but I think that a European superstate could be a good thing.

    However, I am ambivalent about the EU, given its smothering of small businesses and poor civil liberties record.

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