I am having my car fixed and have three hours to kill.
I continue to be angered by pc attitudes. I have 3 stories, one that happened to me, one that happened near me, and one that I read about, all illustrate self-righteousness, but not only self-righteousness but the right these people feel they have to impose their beliefs on others.
When I was young an ex-friend called me a “right fucker”. It was not meant in a pleasant way, it was meant that I always had to be right. I don’t object to that description although it was not meant as a compliment. I talk about many things in this blog but I always try to tell the truth – be right. This is especially difficult because in this covert political world we live in it is hard to discern the truth. I like to think that where I cannot discern the truth I don’t try to claim that what I say is the truth. I am pretty confident that Assad did not drop the chemical bombs. How would he benefit? Trump wanted to promote jingoism, it would not surprise me if he, or hos strategists – directly or indirectly, instigated the chemical bombing but I would never be able to prove it. So this is not truth but it not intentional lying.
I work hard to varying degrees at truth and in Buddhism truth is predicated on morality. Through meditation I have developed a certain level of insight which has given me a conviction about what I do, about what I say is the truth. I would recommend the practices and moral code associated with the 4 Noble Truths – I would recommend as strongly as I possibly could BUT I would never force anyone to follow them. Even if I was government I would never try to force anyone to do something. The pcbullies feel they have the right to set rules governing all the people at their universities because they have been voted for. OK the voting gives them some rights but demanding such minutiae of social behaviour in my view is censorship and dictatorship. I would argue that their moral code is not as strong as mine because they are so young; they do not have the experience to judge. yet they still feel they can impose.
To the 3 stories. I was in Oman, and parking at a supermarket. I found a space, moved past it, turned the car, and stopped preparing to reverse into the place. It was my view that I had begun the parking manoeuvre. I saw a motor-bike whip past me from the left (I was in a left-hand drive), and cussed the stupidity of these idiots who drive near the knuckle. But he hadn’t driven past, he had nipped into my parking space. I was driving a Pajero and there was no way I could see that he had gone in, having started the manoeuvre it should not have been necessary. Suddenly there was a bang on the back of the 4by4, my truck had hit his bike. Why didn’t he stop me before I hit him?
A policeman came over, and I was explaining that the problem was caused by the reckless driving of the motorbike and that I had started the manoeuvre. But here is the liberal involvement. A white woman came over. I am assuming, I don’t know, that she saw a tall angry white man with an Arab police officer picking on an Asian man. She said that the bike was in the parking place, and that I reversed into him. Whilst he was parked before I hit him, the fact is that he had been “slick” and drove into the parking space after I had started the manoeuvre.
By this time my self-righteousness had completely lost it and I was literally hopping mad with frustration because I had started the manoeuvre and yet this woman said I was at fault. The police officer took a back seat in all this, and effectively allowed the woman to fight the battle. From within my own anger I watched her become entrenched, at the same time I saw fear as I was so angry. Typical liberal attitude – entrenched fear. She came over, interfered when it was not her business, and then gets upset because I was angry with her.
The policeman should have resolved the issue but he stood back and watched white people arguing. In the end when I calmed down the police officer saw my side, I think – nothing said, but asked me if I would pay 20 rials – just over £30 for the damage done to the bike (more than the damage cost). I did so as I didn’t want to get all liberal and righteous in courts etc – with all that expense.
My assessment as to why this was liberalism. In my view the woman had not understood that I had started the manoeuvre, had come over because I was a white male who was angry (and could therefore be an MCP); she wanted to defend the “underdog” Asian – Indian on the motorbike. Did she drive? I did not have the presence of mind to ask. In Oman these motor-bike drivers nipping in and out of traffic were a menace on the roads, I now question whether she did in fact drive. Why didn’t she understand about the manoeuvre, or was she simply too entrenched to listen?
The second incident that I observed was on an overnight bus travelling from London to Manchester – maybe 40 years ago when smoking was not so universally condemned. A person started smoking, and a liberal man stood up and shirtily started to complain about the smoking and grabbed the cigarette out of the smoker’s mouth – he was quite obnoxious about it. A black man in front of me soon after started smoking, and the liberal stood up presumably to act in a similar way. The black man simply said to just try it. I didn’t want the black guy to smoke but I almost cheered the way he put this obnoxious self-righteous man down. Cowardly liberalism again.
Finally a story where the consequences of interfering liberalism mattered – in the above instances the liberalism was only irritating. It happened somewhere in Scotland, maybe 20 years ago. A man’s young daughter, maybe 8 years old, had been having trouble with her teeth for days, had been complaining so the father eventually took her to the dentist. When she got to the surgery she refused to go in; eventually he spanked her and she went in. I am not condoning the father’s actions but he was her father and it was his right to resolve the situation as he saw fit; so I accept what he did – I would not have interfered. However the dental receptionist liberal did not, she phoned the police and reported an assault. Because the matter had been reported the police by their code of practice (again a liberal imposition) were forced to respond, came to the surgery and arrested the father. He was imprisoned overnight.
Part of the reason the father had taken the girl to the dentist was because it was Xmas Eve and he didn’t want his daughter moaning all through Xmas – spoiling Xmas everyone. Because of the liberal receptionist – who takes no further part in the impact of her interfering actions, a family was divided over Xmas because the father was in prison overnight.
It turns out the father was a teacher and because he was involved in a case of child abuse the headteacher could not risk the father being in the classroom – in case of liberal parents complaining, so he was not allowed to teach. He was pushed into being the school librarian – and I have a feeling his livelihood was further threatened but I cannot remember the details. The following June the case appeared in court, and because the father had assaulted the daughter he was found guilty and the judge fined him a £1. What devastation was caused in that family because of the interference of the liberal receptionist.
The characteristic of all this liberalism was that they wish to interfere and impose their values on others. I personally have not met any liberals who are clear-minded and who have thought through the implications of their thinking – their liberal thinking stops at emotionally accepting a human right. But then I disagree with them so I wouldn’t think they were clear-minded. I have no doubts that they are community-minded, and for that reason should be commended. But being community-minded is not the same as interfering and imposing their values on others without responsibility or consequence. Such liberals are not famous for standing up in court as witnesses against violent criminals. I have done that and it is not pleasant, and it affects your life. In my view this type of liberal walks away from such. They will impose when they are in charge, in other words they are bullies – liberal or PC bullies, the violence of the state forces supporting them.
Does that make them any better than other forms of bullies? Such as racists or sexists. Well it does to some extent. Abuse against women or children (not parental punishment) is worse than liberal interference. But such interference has consequences as in the case of the father at the dentist, and the liberal did not face any of that with her interference. It reminds me of the abortion argument. Rich US right-wing Christians demand that poor people give birth into a life of poverty and sometimes ill health when they have the money to prevent both, but they feel they have the right to interfere.
We have to respect the rights of individuals and not impose liberal values (ill thought out in my view) on other people.
It is this self-righteousness that the MIC manipulates to cause war and therefore profit. Liberals have been condemning Donald Trump especially since he became president. But then he drops bombs and the liberals support that, where is the compassion in the dropping of bombs? Liberal mainstream media (such as Trevor Noah, Samantha Bee, John Oliver) has been condemning Donald Trump for lies – or alternative truths, yet they don’t question whether the chemical attacks are from Assad – an assumption that has no logical basis. How much do these liberals know about Syria? Are they informed enough to make a valid conclusion? I am not. What about the “mother of all bombs”? Are they informed about that? And North Korea? They say Trump lies but when it comes to war he doesn’t?
For me this is typical of ill-thought-out liberal thinking. There is an element of emotional compassion but it is superficial – poor babies. Their fear dominates their thought processes. The establishment pronounces there is a threat from radical Islam. Afghanistan, North Korea, and instead of questioning and the demanding of accountability as to the validity of such actions the fear of these liberals allows for unwarranted acts of war (in my view). As usual the MIC gets its profits, and in this case some say Trump has personally profited – I don’t know but I assess it would be possible of such a man.
And with all of this so many people have now been convinced that such people are left-wing!!
This is always worth watching, it is about Occupy – “Rise like Lions”:-
If I am seeking Unity why do I make such a scathing attack on liberalism, surely I want also to unite with these Liberals. The problem is they are so divisive. Firstly their self-righteousness is arrogant. On an individual and global level they interfere because of this arrogance. Secondly they are not analytical. Whilst their approach has a superficial basis in compassion – anti-racist, anti-sexist and pro-LBGT as well as human rights – their fear does not allow them to progress beyond this superficial emotionality. In terms of feminism Bell Hooks described two types of feminism – reformist and revolutionary (non-violent hopefully). Reformism means working within the system, and in general this system known as neoliberalism has proven not to work. The 1% are not going to relinquish their power easily, and a touch of arrogant self-righteousness is not going to produce the change. The fear of these liberals turns a blind eye on the systemic problems such as the profligate wars for profits as evidenced by the support for Donald Trump’s acts of war. So whilst there is Unity with the ideals of these people the arrogant self-righteousness is divisive. This can be evidenced by the stance of US liberal media (Trevor Noah, Samantha Bee and John Oliver) who throughout the election attacked Donald Trump, and now continue to attack him on party lines – they could be seen as humorous party political broadcasts. Yet quite clearly there is support against the Liberals as evidenced by the presidential vote. These satirical programmes which were once of a flavour that was left-wing and progressive are now a pillar of the mainstream media, and as such are causing division because they are not part of a movement against the 1%.
My personal aggression towards these liberals is based on personal experience, and also because their superficial approach has enabled the right to attack left-wing principle by identifying liberalism with the left-wing. Historically on the left genuine socialists have worked within the mass movement such as Labour in the UK and Democrats in the US but now the character of these mass movement parties has changed. They have become Liberal establishment rather than moving towards genuine socialism. Whilst movements such as Momentum surrounding Corbyn and Our Revolution around Sanders are movements that genuine socialism can unite behind, the character of these movements has to be firmly based in anti-1% positions with their wars for profit and this character has to eschew the liberalism that alienates the genuine working-class perspective. How can a working-class perspective ignore the legitimate claims of white working people who have lost their jobs? How can these white people be ignored because they may or may not be racist or sexist? Yet these Liberals did, and continue to do so if Liberal media is anything to go by. Liberal positions might sound acceptable with their compassionate rhetoric but the Liberal fear concerning their materialism and way of life prevents them from targeting the 1% who use their Liberal fear.
Liberalism is divisive, and as such it needs to be attacked for what it is – effective 1%-support. These Liberals need to identify themselves with the 99% and stop allowing their fear to be manipulated by the 1% to divide the 99%.
Archive for the ‘Freedom’ Category
Trump and Brexit have indicated a change in mainstream politics. When I listened to Pilger on Trump then it became clear that there has been a change in the political paradigm. I grew up with politics on the left, mainstream politics that discussed a centrist-right battle of Labour-Conservative with the 1% functioning somewhere towards the right end of the spectrum indistinguishable from the Tories. With Blair the liberals have come into the mainstream. With an ineffective Liberal party, clinging to power in a coalition that provided none of their policies, these liberals have worked with the Blair opportunists and now Labour has even further lost its class identity. Corbyn has been trying to reclaim that identity but these parliamentary Blairites (with the support of the media) have fought him all the way, and whilst Corbyn has Labour movement support these mainstream attacks are affecting the ballot box. Meanwhile these liberals have appropriated a stage in mainstream politics, and their agenda is two-fold:-
• Promoting an alienating agenda of identity politics – PC police
The power of these two positions within mainstream politics has enabled a right-wing reaction throughout the western world, promoted UKIP in the UK, and voted in Trump in the US.
As a consequence of this liberal rise, there has been a profound change in the political paradigm. The left wing (as a purist I do not include liberals as left but most do) has become a legitimate target for the right because of these alienating liberal policies. At the same time the arrogance of this liberal purism (as exemplified here) continues to label the right as racist, sexist and anti-LBGT even though there has been an emergence of some legitimate compassionate populist right thinking and analysis. Within this division the 1% seem to have disappeared, and a naïve liberal agenda continues self-righteously to fan the flames of the division especially in the US.
As a response to this shift in paradigm there needs to be a political change as exemplified by the Unity Platform:-
Once I saw Trevor Phillips “Has Politically Correctness gone mad?”, I watched more. There were flags, and then …. In the intro to political correctness he spoke of losing out on 3 extremists, Brexit May and Corbyn; that was a flag he saw Corbyn as extremist. He spoke often of being the liberal that people like Farage are against so “being liberal” was a flag. When I watched “Things about race etc”, I was pleased to see him raising issues that Liberals don’t usually discuss. Things were going well.
I did however note his discussion of Jews, and he brazenly put up J ……
Yes some Jews do have too much power because some Jews are very rich and powerful. But at the same time some Jews are not rich and powerful, and attack their own “rich and powerful”. He did say they were richer on average but that still does not mean all Jews are the same. Trevor criticised people who said “All blacks are the same”, further discussed diversity training as suggesting erroneously “All whites are the same”, yet he is saying all Jews are the same – rich and powerful. I learnt from black people how not to be racist, because black people should be treated differently and I should not accept media stereotypes. I learnt from Jews through the 6 tenets how not to be anti-semitic, Trevor needs to examine himself in terms of these 6 tenets.
It is not usual for me to describe black people as racist. I subscribe to the maxim that Power + Prejudice = Racism, but in the world of the liberal elite Trevor Phillips has power so he has the potential for misuse of power. In describing the Jews in this way he is being racist, because he has the power to influence. This was a bad flag. When you talk about “all” in terms of race then you take a risk because all black people are not the same nor are whites nor are Jews. I understand this position on Jews, it is common amongst liberals and the left because some Jews are powerful – are 1%. I have to recognise ego in this.
I was also disappointed that he did not confront some black issues. When he addressed the violence of black youth he was extremely careful not to offend black people. This negates the whole point of his programme – to expose the racism that is propagated by liberals avoiding causing offence. At first he used police figures to say that Colombians controlled violent street crime in South London. In the 80s word said it was the Jews in Camberwell who were controlling the street crime because they were supposed to have bought the stolen goods. Then when he discussed the actual figures of violent street crime, Trevor used the sentencing figures rather than stating that black youth were carrying out violent street crime. This was liberal avoidance. There are many institutional issues involved with the criminalising of black youth but how much is there a propensity for black British to be involved in street crime? I cannot answer this as I don’t live there now. In the 80s all the arguments concerning the criminalising of black youth by institutional racism, police racism and the general racism in society were true, but some of the black youth themselves still choose to participate in street violence. In my view Trevor is completely correct in confronting the liberal avoidance embodied in political correctness but in doing this his approach has to be almost perfect – above criticism; again in my view on these two issues his approach has to be questioned.
But the above is nothing compared to what he came out with concerning Muslims – “What British Muslims really think”, I was horrified. After seeing so much good stuff about exposing PC bullies it was a surprise. But in the context of the above flags it is not a surprise, a black person can show prejudice. In my view he also showed typical liberal weaknesses. He criticised violence yet ignored the violence perpetrated on Muslim countries. He focussed on criticisms of homosexuality – a liberal issue, he concentrated on Muslim minority views, and he also criticised the Muslims because of a small percentage of violent views.
He began by quoting Cameron talking about British values, this is well-established code for racists who insist that others adopt a British way of life – whatever that is. It is not an appeal for what non-whites should do but trying to appease white people with having non-whites in the country. Gina Yashere in a comedy routine talks of the anger of her Nigerian mother at immigrants coming taking her jobs. Rather than being an advert for diversity Trevor appears to be adopting Gina’s comic caricature.
To me there is a good deal of inconsistency in his position. I mentioned already that Trevor was “around” when I was learning about racism in the mid-to-late 70s. I am now going to make a comparison between black activists in the 70s and Trevor’s criticism of Muslims. This is a subjective comparison. As this is not an academic blog I offer no proof, and I am making assumptions that the position of black activists I am putting forward is the same position Trevor held at the time – I have no right to do this but I don’t believe I am wrong. My point is this. I believe that many of the criticisms that Trevor has of Muslims parallel criticism of 70s and 80s attitudes towards black people. I assess that he and many people consider that black people have sufficiently integrated now, so by drawing the comparison I am saying “give it time”.
I first want to begin with the issue of terrorism. Evidently there are some British Muslims involved in what the world calls terrorism – as defined by the West in their War on Terror. In the 70s and 80s black people were supporting violence. This would be the violence in which black people were overthrowing the British (or European) colonialists, this would also be the violence of the slaves in terms of their suffrage. There would also be many black people who would be supporting struggles against the neocolonial puppets who were in charge throughout Africa, freedom movements or freedom struggles would be common descriptions.
In Trevor’s programme on “What British Muslims really think?”, he based his criticisms on a Channel 4 survey. The survey asked whether Muslims supported violence, and the answer was 4% did. In the 70s and 80s if black people had been asked if they supported violence, I would suspect far more than 4% supported violence; and many more would have said they understand the use of violence – such as the criminalising of black youth.
In the 70s and 80s the recent history of black people had been affected by the violence of colonialism, and their response at the time would have been to accept that violence could be a legitimate response. The degree of violence that Muslim people have been subjected to since 9/11 is comparable to the violence that black people suffered – I use the word comparable loosely because measuring the violence that black people suffered through slavery as well as colonialism as compared with wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, Somalia and Yemen are horrendous events to try to “compare”. But the violent attacks on these predominantly Muslim parts of the world are “recent”, and therefore feelings amongst Muslims would also be “recent” – comparable with the acceptance of violence by British black communities in the 70s and 80s.
But Trevor did not attack support for violence, the survey discussed the acceptance of violence but Trevor jumped to interpreting the survey’s acceptance of violence as accepting terrorism. This is a big jump. British governments might well have described the freedom struggles of the African peoples as terrorist, history now sees such struggles as legitimate, and because of white control of media little mention is given of the true nature of colonialism and neocolonialism.
If Muslims feel that violence is a possible response to dictatorship in the Middle East, or if Muslims feel violence is a possible response to wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya, or if Muslims believe that violence is a possible response to the drone strikes on Yemen and Somalia, this would be totally consistent with history’s support of freedom struggles in Africa – totally consistent with any black support of violence in their freedom struggles.
But support of freedom struggles is not support of terrorist acts. If the survey had asked “do you support acts of terrorism such as 7/7 or the other bombs within the countries of the NATO hegemony?”, I very much doubt whether the figure would have been as high as 4%. When NATO troops invade Muslim countries for whatever reason, isn’t violence a legitimate response to invasion?
To me Trevor appears to have forgotten his history.
Over the years I suggest that British black attitude to violence has become aligned with the “general” population, and there is no reason to think that British Muslims would not also align themselves as they become distanced from their recent history of experiencing violence.
On homosexuality there is an interesting article in the Guardian on its practise in Muslim countries. When I worked in the Middle East (Muslim Arab countries) I had the feeling – no more than that – that homosexuality was tolerated in those Muslim countries. However there are other Muslim countries where the attitude to homosexuality is so different. I surmise that the attitude of the Taliban towards homosexuality would be very different to that of more tolerant Muslims in the Middle East. Traditionally black communities have not been tolerant of homosexuality, and some African countries to this day show intolerance – Uganda and others. However over the years this intolerance by black people in Britain has liberalised, and has aligned more to that of white people. It would not be unreasonable to expect British Muslims also to align themselves with the more liberal attitudes that are accepted “generally” in the wider population.
On segregation Trevor is again fanning flames. When I grew up white middle-class lived separately from white working-class, and held different values. In the middle-class community of my youth it was not written but understood that these classes were separate, and bringing home a working-class girl was almost as bad as a black woman. Separation is not a problem, and is normal for British life. How many people have been invited to the home of a lord?
This is also inflammatory. If this was going to be used as an indicator of Muslims creating problems through segregation, it would have been an appropriate comparison to ask now how many white people have been in black homes. Back in the 70s and 80s it was just as rare for black and white to meet outside work – sunset segregation. Equally it was rare for Indians and whites to meet outside work. Again my point is that it is not Muslims creating this issue.
How many white people invite Muslims into their homes? If such an invite occurs, how many Muslims have not reciprocated? I have only known Arab Muslims, and not in Britain, they were hospitable but I was never invited into their parents’ home because I was a lowly teacher. Back in the 70s and 80s I was in and out of black peoples’ homes but that was because my personal life involved black people but I doubt very much whether there was anything other than sunset segregation for most of the teachers. I also think it significant that white culture accepts drinking, but on drinking Muslim culture is better (not dependent on drugs) as it is expected that people abstain. Much sunset socialising is done in pubs after work, I don’t know whether Muslims would join in – I know how uncomfortable I feel when I watch friends deliberately moronicise themselves when drinking.
Separate schools for Muslims is always considered a segregation issue yet back in the 70s and 80s British black people advocated supplementary schools. If black people are now considered integrated such an advocacy hasn’t hurt.
In the late 70s and early 80s I taught in Brixton, and also taught part-time at Gresham. This was a black only school, and it was a tradition that came over from the Caribbean where black children were additionally taught in supplementary schools. These supplementary schools were especially important for black students because teacher expectation in mainstream schools, amongst other factors, was lowering their achievement. Bernard Coard’s book “How the West Indian child is made educationally sub-normal in the British school system” was typical of black viewpoints at the time. It was written in the early 70s, and is discussed here in the Guardian 10 years ago, and here.
This separate schooling was part of a Caribbean tradition of “Saturday schools” (supplementary schools) to promote their cultural interests, and to avoid the institutional racism that existed in schools.
What is wrong with Muslims wanting separate schooling now? In fact it could be considered that the issue is worse for Muslims because of the War on Terror which has been turned into a powerful Islamophobic movement across the world. This probably means that the anti-Muslim racism is far worse in schools; when I taught in the UK in 2003/2004 there was a serious tension regarding Islamic students. It must be worse when teachers are expected to report on potential “student-terrorists”.
In general Trevor confronts liberal weaknesses, this is positive. I have observed certain characteristics, this is not all liberals but these characteristics can be seen. Some Liberals I have known have not overcome their own racism, they do not have a deep commitment to equal rights and tolerance. There is a level at which their commitment turns to fear. Typically Liberals welcome black people who subscribe to their same Liberal views, would welcome black people in their parties etc., but they are still afraid of meeting a black man on the street. This is not all Liberals, and it might be a bit dated as a scenario but it illustrates liberalism. There is not a commitment to black culture – whatever that is, there is not a deep tolerance but if black people want to behave the same liberal way (Cameron’s British values) they will be welcomed. This liberal fear is significant because such liberals are afraid to face themselves, they don’t want the depth of their commitment to be questioned. It is similar to the difference between intellect and insight, there is intellectual acceptance when there is agreement but there is not the insight that is committed to accepting difference. In this Trevor is the same because he cannot accept the illiberality of Muslim dogma.
What is this iliberality? The usual traditional Muslim bugbears – anti-gay, women walking behind men, etc. Let me be clear I dislike those attitudes, as a compassionate man I cannot accept such. But I completely accept the right for communities within any country to have such values, and so long as they comply with the laws of the country there is no conflict. There are conflicts that arise with such communities within a liberal country. When traditional Muslim children attend Liberal schools such conflicts are exposed. Liberal education would expose such traditions, but so long as such conflicts are resolved within the community there is no issue. In many ways there is a requirement of such communities to live separately in order to maintain their Muslim identity, no problem with this.
As a leading Liberal I would have hoped Trevor would have stood up against Islamophobia but his programme propagated it disgracefully. My Google search showed only the right wing press commenting on his efforts, did he achieve his objective in questioning liberal attitudes? Perhaps not if he was fostering Islamophobia and antisemitism. Confronting liberal prejudice is a noble aim but is no excuse for prejudice – overall disappointment.
To consider Trevor Phillips’ contribution it is useful to consider the old maxim
Prejudice + Power = Racism
Back in the 70s/80s many black people would use the word “honky” to speak derogatorily of white people. As a result white people would say black people were racist. But there was a big difference, these people dishing out this insult had no power. White people controlled jobs, housing – basically the money black people could receive, so when white people applied their prejudice it had an effect; being called a honky qualifies under “sticks and stones can break my bones but names can never hurt me”. What I want to get at here is that because Trevor is black does not mean that he is free from prejudice. With regards to Jews and Muslims Trevor has shown prejudice, but worse because he has some power his poor attitude has impact. I welcome Trevor’s opening up of liberal weakness – weakness that means issues are not faced. In my view it is this weakness that has created PC madness, and the resulting alienation of so many white people. But because Trevor has shown his own prejudice, such questioning will have had its impact lessened.
In my desire to understand Trump and the right I came across this libertarian piece. Now I have a lot of time for libertarians because I consider them genuine people who hold freedom with high regard. I too hold freedom with high regard but I hold compassion higher. The main area in which I therefore have disagreement is deregulation, there are regulations in place to benefit the less fortunate – I want those. There were financial regulations in place that when removed led to repossession of homes, I wanted those regulations. Because of the nature of the world today libertarians working for freedom enable the 1% because they remove restrictions that hold back the 1%. But of course most regulation benefits the 1%, and I understand where libertarians come from.
There is an interesting libertarian article on individualism vs collectivism. Now I believe in collectivism and it is a very frustrating principle to hold. Because of this acceptance of collectivism I wanted to counter some of the arguments made by this libertarian because as I see it what he is describing as collectivism is his libertarian view of collectivism.
My history with collectivism has been involved with democratic meetings on the left where a policy is decided through putting forward a motion which is then debated and a collective policy agreed. Quite often attendees at such meetings are representatives and such policies have wider implications. In such debates positions are put forward, and a compromise position is agreed and there was some intention that all those involved in such a process (including those represented) would enact the policy.
In Occupy they never had voting either, what is the point of a policy voted in by 51%? How can that work? Look at everyone fighting Trump yet under the rules of the election he won. Is he still representing a majority? Occupy wanted a consensus for what it did. Under Occupy’s approach we would not accept “wars for profits” as there would never be a consensus. But such wars happen now because sufficient representatives are bought off.
The manipulation that occurred on the left happened because of intellectual egotism. Various intellectuals (Marxist of a form) would disrupt collective decision-making by repeatedly demanding that a particular position be discussed and voted in. There was no desire on the part of these intellectuals to reach a consensus of what the collective wanted, it was always what they wanted. They did not wish to compromise with what the mass movement wanted, they just wanted to drag the mass movement to their position. The Russian revolution would never have happened if the revolutionaries had waited for the mass movement so the left wing accepted a minority group, the Bolsheviks, because the left wing desired a revolution. This flaw dogged the whole revolution and the communist government (who accepted minority representation who then told people what to do) until it eventually fell.
What has become clear to me is that all the desires that I had for mass movement were so dominated by the ideal that the practise was completely flawed. The notion that the mass movement can be persuaded to accept a genuine democracy is never going to happen because of the power of the 1% to create division. As such there has to be a compromise. Equally I would say to those people who are genuine and compassionate on the right – such as libertarians, they also cannot make a dent in the 1% on their own; there has to be unity (see Unity Platform).
Until the rise of the populist right, as evidenced by Trump and Brexit, I had dismissed the intellectuals of the right as just being egotists. However that position was myopic – a convenient dismissal to avoid headbanging discussion. There could never be a united 99% until all 99% are working together – and that includes some kind of unity that would involve the left and right.
Before I deal with individualism and collectivism it is important to understand a huge stumbling block. This stumbling block I met on the left and on the right – and I am guilty of it myself – egotism. I am right, what I am saying is right¸ my ideas are the ones everyone should follow. Even if those ideas have some strength in numbers such as Marxism or Libertarianism, they are still just sets of ideas put forward by individuals. These individuals become invested in the ideas, and there becomes this idea set or ism that everyone has to squeeze into. Libertarians demand that all seek individual freedom, however free this sounds it is still an idea set that others must squeeze into – in other words, not free and not individual. Egotism has always been a problem on the left and it is a problem on the right. And the problem with such egotism is that it is so easy to buy off. The internet is full of individuals who are sponsored by the 1% to promote their egos and ideas. And what is the result – deep division of the 99%. These egos need to understand how deeply they are the problem because of their leadership, and learn to take a backseat. But the collective instead of following leaders needs to respect their own creativity and understanding, and come to their own conclusions based on understanding provided by leaders. Following per se needs to be discouraged because it creates two problems – ignorance of the followers and egotism in the leaders. Individuals need to be discerning and work within collectives, and the collective needs to be more active in their understanding and respect the individual; this is the yin-yang.
Now I want to look at this libertarian’s view of individualism and collectivity. And to do that I want to set two provisos:-
The priority is compassion and not freedom. I contend compassion is natural (ask the Buddha) whereas freedom to do what you want is not natural – not when it infringes on the natural. Freedom per se risks egotism. Freedom at a deep level is only compassion but more superficially desire diverts freedom to egotism, and needs discipline – personal or otherwise.
The second proviso is to recognise that government and collectivism is not now the same. Originally government “might” have been for the people and by the people, but it is now not that – it is 1%-by-proxy. The voting systems and other checks and balances have established a government that often pretends to be for the people but in fact benefits the 1%. If the individual contrast with government that is not the individual contrasting with collectivism as government is now not for the people. If the individual is contrasting with collectivism then that individualism might be putting the individual before compassion and as such is contradicting the first proviso and is exhibiting egotism.
So now to the article.
Free trade as a principle is not a problem, but how it is practised today is there to benefit the 1%. If trade is considered as barter or using money to represent value, there are no issues. But our economic system with a tenet of free trade does not happen in this way. Our economy is dominated by the 1% whose raison d’etre is to accumulate – increase their personal wealth. This accumulation is carried out by controlling trade through cartels, imposing tariffs to the benefit of the 1%, manipulating currency and finance to increase their accumulation. None of this trade is free, so although it is called free trade it is protectionism and protectionism is the dominant mode of business in the western world – because it is the 1%-system. Deregulation is one of the libertarian platforms. It sounds good in that it sounds as if it is supporting freedom. Because the power lies with protectionism, that is the system that would continue when there is some partial financial and trade deregulations; this will only benefit the 1%. Hence some deregulatory measures or partial deregulation lack compassion. Free trade as in an equivalent barter system is a compassionate trading system but that will not occur when there are corporations and protectionism.
Western societies have benefitted from exploiting the third world initially through European (mainly British) colonisations that then became neocolonial exploitation through a US hegemony. This is historical fact, and needs to be recognised for a proper contemporary economic understanding. Education needs to change to be telling this historical truth. But this is not the same as “imposing” diversity training. For there to be compassion in the US or other places there needs to be recognition of equality for all its peoples including whites – compassion. Privilege wherever it occurs needs to be discouraged as it is encouraging benefits for people who do not deserve them. Within a proper historical understanding some might choose “reparations”, this happens in Australia to some extent because of expropriation of aboriginal lands unfairly; is this not justice? Would it not be justice for Native Americans? Should there be justice for people whose ancestors were enslaved? These are difficult questions, and there should not be a carte blanche solution. Should a wealthy black business owner get reparations? Should there be gratuities paid to black gangs to further their criminal activity? Compassion and justice should deal with these questions but it is my view that if there were a wider sense of justice in society such claims for reparations might well disappear. When there is little compassion and justice unreasonable demands can emerge. “I can see how the leftist race activists have created such an environment of hostility and even violence toward white people, based on collectivism and ignorance,” This is just emotive. I have no understanding as to how awareness of history or issues of justice concerning black people can possibly be ignorance, and what has it to do with collectivism? The writer himself was not afraid of minority white America, why was such a statement necessary except as an appeal to populism?
Health care is a compassionate right for all. When a requirement for health care is insurance then insurance should include finance for “pre-existing conditions”. But a compassionate society that is working for all would provide health care rather than seeing health care as a business. The US health and insurance system needs to be radically reconsidered in the light of showing compassion to its people. Defending insurance practices is not defending the compassionate interests of the health of the people. Supporting insurance companies against the interests of the people whose freedom is being limited by health issues and corporate interests (insurance) does not sound like a freedom principle. Maternity leave – do we return to the days when a woman forcibly loses her job because she has a child? Do we return to the days where women were not employed because they might have to leave and have children? Obviously there lacks compassion in this position. Having children is natural, should a woman’s freedom be restricted in not employing her? This is not collectivist, this is compassion and respect for nature.
Trade agreements are part and parcel of the “free trade” practise that is protectionism. To adopt a position that says hands-off some protectionist practises whilst leaving others in place plays into the hands of the 1% who would benefit from such apparent “free trade” practises. The current economic practise benefits the 1% in corporations and lacks compassion. Once trading is compassionate, when protectionism at all levels has disappeared regulations need not occur. Setting deregulation as an objective without putting compassion at the forefront is a dangerous policy. Disband cartels, remove market mechanisms, remove the money manipulators, then you have free trade. But the 1% will not allow that. The free trade they want is trading without restrictive regulation maintaining existing cartel mechanisms, because they have accumulated money and will control the economy further to the detriment of ordinary people – no compassion. Eminent domain needs to be considered on an individual level based on compassion, the pipelines are disastrous ecologically and should not be allowed.
Taxation has to be considered historically. Taxation was introduced by the British in Africa because they couldn’t get anyone to work for them as the people were trading through barter. Once the people were taxed they got the workers, built the infrastructure that enabled the businesses to make profits. Will businesses accept infrastructure costs, environmental costs as part of production costs? Should a compassionate society not care for those who are unable to care for themselves? Should a compassionate society not educate poorer people? Complaining about taxes as a principle is a compassionless act. Examining taxation expenditure is common sense. Why do our taxes pay military businesses huge amounts of taxation money for wars that increase their profits, do not defend democracy, kill people and damage the ecology? Yikes, no taxes as a position lacks compassion, and puts principle before people.
When he talks of human rights and presumption of innocence he is talking compassionately and I have no issues. However he seems to associate disagreement with him on these human rights issues as collectivism. It is compassion, it might be called collective compassion – compassion for all. Individual human rights have to be respected; at the same time compassion for others has to be respected. There can be no principle here, if there is a conflict the matter has to be resolved through communication and justice.
Two paragraphs on immigration. Firstly criminal acts should be punished whoever you are – rich or poor. Small business people being arrested because they employ illegal immigrants is more difficult. If a principle is established that immigration is illegal then business people who benefit from illegality need to be punished, the immigrants come because they are looking for work. Because of the policies of the US hegemony as a whole, the US is rich and becomes a place where immigrants want to work. A more equal world means there is no such problem. People should be protected from inequities in the law. Of course these business people should be paying equal wages, do they? If they were I would want to defend them. Most pay exploitative wages taking advantage of the people whose poverty has turned them into criminals, I have far less sympathy with them because there is no compassion. Again principles other than compassion present a problem, people should not be free to exploit.
Why is blocking people entering the US collectivist? It is certainly against the freedom of an individual but why collectivism? It is protectionist, it is protecting the indigenous people (by this I mean the people of the US) by preventing people from entering and possibly competing on the job market. It is not compassionate, and if “blocking” is collectivism then it is against compassion, and I don’t support such “blocking”. But this is not in the interest of the mass movement although I must admit that in my years working with trade unions their policies were interested in such protectionist measures – something I fought against. I can understand this as a collective measure against the interests of the individual (the immigrants). But for me this was a small part of what mass movement politics was about, but I have to accept it was a weakness in many trade unions . My mass movement is the 99%, and I fight the interests of the 1%. Such protectionism is part of 1% divide-and-rule tactics, and is not part of any Unity of the 99%. To apply the sophistry of US territory as a property is just another form of protectionism.
“Collectivism is a bad thing” seems to me to be “inventing” an enemy leading to “the individual against the collective”. Applying such a paradigm tends to make compassion confusing, because there is collective compassion and individual compassion. It is the very paradigm, and the clinging to that paradigm that causes libertarians to be in conflict with what is happening. It is not the heart of these people who I believe think that the application of their paradigm would benefit all humanity. In the meanwhile compassion suffers as in the interim people will suffer.
The same benchmark of compassion can be applied to socialism and the paradigm that creates. When you have a dogma and apply that dogma, people suffer. Was the Soviet revolution acceptable when so many suffered even though theoretically in the long-term Marxism could benefit all? You cannot put theory before compassion so any libertarian measures in my view need to be placed in a pragmatic compassionate framework. What are the results of the actions? Not do the actions because they have a sound theoretical basis – freedom. This is a 1%-world, and freedom in such a world cannot be attained when 1%-governments are applying it. To describe the problem as collectivism, the individual against the collective, is a diversion against compassion.
But if we accept a Unity platform against the 1%, morally and compassionately all people should be included if they can leave personal egos behind.
This Trevor Phillips documentary “Has Political Correctness gone mad?” has seriously disturbed me, this PC stuff is now just censorship.
I have known censorship all my working life. In teaching one of the bigger hypocrisies is that they say they give a balanced outlook and let the students decide. Then they want to protect the students. I taught in Hove (actually) for nearly 6 years, and the censorship I came across was horrendous – and along with being the union rep cost me promotion. My head was a feeble bully who was incompetent. He used tactics to stifle opposition to him, and most teachers deeply resented him but were scared for their jobs so did little – his bullying easily allowed him to affect promotion; the lay governors had made an ignorant appointment and the teachers paid the consequences. However because he was so feeble he ignored his staff, and if parents or governors said anything he jumped and kept his job. I was a semi-public figure in the local trade union movement, Brighton and Hove, and Hove is very right wing so parents were always willing to complain about me. Because of this I was forced to censor myself, although I saw my job as maths teacher and not purveyor of left-wing wisdom so had no desire to spend lessons teaching Marxism or whatever. Other teachers who were not so threatened did put across their viewpoints because they were safe and acceptable; I knew the lie of the land and accepted this censorship even though it was not educational. I remember feeling angry because a good-hearted teacher was able to promote environmental awareness, and gained favour because of this. He did things for the environment but refused to comment on whether accumulation, capitalism or the 1% were the causes of problems. I doubt if he wanted to make such comments, he was just happy collecting bottles etc. The head liked this – perfectly safe, good practice for the kids and yet they never learned the truth so it was not very educational. Students had the personal strength to make judgements for themselves. Show them facts and let them assess for themselves – sadly that is not now an option with the manufacturing of fake news that confuses knowledgeable adults let alone children trying to learn.
Any form of censorship is a measure of failure for a society. PC first came in because society had failed. The problems of racism and sexism were deep-seated, and controlling the way people spoke about black people and women was a positive step; I understood at the time that it was always to be integrated with good education. At that time this positive step towards inoffensive language was however only community pressure, a pressure that I thought was acceptable in that disapproval was the only legal punishment.
Legislation on what can be said where and when can never work, what is said is a moral action and morality cannot be dictated to by law. This clip from the Trevor Phillips documentary horrified me.
I have no problem with these people discussing these issues but what they were then doing is enacting them as policy within their universities. Such repression is counter-productive. People have to reach such conclusions for themselves, morality is a personal activity. Repression through censorship or otherwise just produces a backlash. In the UK typical expressions of that backlash are UKIP, Manosphere and Brexit, none of which make any sense other than understanding they are backlashes against repression.
When Trevor says Trump is a consequence of PC repression, he is right, but these liberals are so self-righteous they appear not to be altering their approach. These are not people working for the 99% but intellectual liberals working for their own self-importance – ego. When I see this I understand why the right wing is so critical of leftists, and how they have been able to mobilise around a racist sexist bigot like Trump. Extreme actions produce extreme reactions.
It is far easier in the short term to repress, misuse power and prevent differing views from being aired. But repression is never a solution, it is only violence. Communication produces solutions when people try to listen. These students were not listening in the same way UKIP voters are not listening, in the same way that the Trump deplorables are not listening. Without communication there is no unity, such censorship is completely illiberal – and dangerous.
Later I will discuss the problems I have with Trevor Phillips (LINK to be added) but there is no doubt that he is right on the money when he describes this political correctness as mad. Unfortunately these liberals are so self-righteous they cannot see the damage they are doing. So many people have been alienated by their tactics that establishment parties more favourable to the left (and liberalism) such as Labour or Democrats are now losing out. If there is no education to go along with PC legislation, then it is just censorship and in my view society is better without it.
I am afraid of this – deeply afraid.
I have spent a long time considering my position on Trump and Brexit. Where did I end up? Attacking the liberal left for their failure to include the moral right. There is only one thing that can prevent the rise in fascism – unity. Unity of purpose against the 1%.
What could happen? The Left are taking to the streets. The Left are taking their right to demonstrate as being accepted, and especially in the US assuming that that right will be accepted. It was not accepted with Occupy, why is it going to be accepted now?
But there is a big difference now. Trump has let the deplorables out. Rather than being muzzled by token liberalism these deplorables are now being encouraged by Trump. These deplorables appeared to form the bulk of his election train, are they going to stand by and allow the Left to demonstrate freely?
What happened in Germany pre-Second World War? Hitler was VOTED in. There was a backlash in the street (Rotfrontkämpferbund ), and this backlash was met by Hitler support (Sturmabteilung). The German streets developed a pretext that the streets were unmanageable, the state took over and there was fascism. “In the mid-1920s, the party engaged in electoral battles in which Hitler participated as a speaker and organizer,[b] as well as in street battles and violence between the Rotfrontkämpferbund and the Nazis’ Sturmabteilung (SA).” References from wiki Hitler’s rise to power.
Is it conceivable that such forces exist in the US?
Is it possible that the Left will mobilise on the streets? They are doing so now.
Is it possible that White Supremacists would go out on the streets to support Trump?
Is it possible that Trump would let this happen?
Is it possible that the 1% would allow this situation to escalate to such an extent that more and more troops would be needed to keep the streets quiet?
If all these things are possible, is that not fascism?
Am I right to be afraid of rising fascism?
Now there can be only one solution – unity of purpose against the 1%. It is time to build bridges between the moral left and the moral right, at the moment it is not possible for the dogmatic left and racist right to meet – they are too entrenched. The meeting points are morality and compassion that can then build communication to unravel all the propaganda that now exists on the Net. It is only by both moral sides getting to know each other that the barriers will get taken down.
Am I right to be afraid of rising fascism?
If so, do something about it now.
At least since the end of the second world war we have had a neoliberal system – probably since we had universal suffrage, now ordinary people are paying for this compromise. Neoliberalism allowed for public political parlour games in the West. Over regular periods (usually 4 or 5 years) we went through a sham of electoral democracy in which politicians stood up for marginally different versions of the same deal, neoliberalism, with the parties (usually two in each country) offering different levels of token support for ordinary people whilst carrying out 1% policies.
And the left has now paid for their own compromise with this neoliberalism.
Here is an example that happened to me. I don’t know what the current CP tactics are but back in the 80s the CP asked its members to compromise with the neoliberal system in order not to split working-class or union support. Typically this involved extremely distasteful actions. In my own case I attended the NUT conference, and at this conference I was asked to support the Broad Left which included the mainstream leadership. I attended their disco (I attended discos then) and watched a degree of sycophanticism that was so distasteful I walked out. It was undoubtedly true that the Trots, known as the Socialist Teachers’ Alliance then, were adopting policies that would have split the union if their conference motions had been passed. So I understood why the CP asked me to do what I did, but it was distasteful. More attempts at building bridges on the left against the neoliberalism could have been made but they weren’t, and there was an impasse with built-in stagnation. Such analysis concerning these bridges was not around then, so all of the left needs to accept responsibility for this. I think it significant that there was no recognition at the time concerning neoliberalism. The analysis was simply bourgeois and proletarian, and working within the labour movement, either in the unions or the labour party, to remove the impact of the opportunists. The weakness of this analysis, lacking any emphasis on the neoliberal system, was significant in the lack of bridge-building. Because the emphasis was on mass movement unity, battles existed on the left (typified by Trots vs Commies), and the direction of the discourse was always towards unity within the mass movement. However that unity, supposedly considered as unity of the proletariat, effectively meant unity on the left, and there was never any real efforts to unify with the right wing – whether in the union or the labour party. In the minds of the left the populist right, because of their politics lacking compassion for liberal issues were being identified with the 1% when in fact they were populist right and needed to be included within the mass movement against the 1%. To me this weak position was the early causes of the separation of the populist right and move to fascism that is indicated by votes for Brexit and Trump.
Soon after this NUT conference I left the UK so I don’t know how the CP and others on the left have dealt with neoliberalism since then, but I do feel this stagnation continued. Supporting the 1%-Labour, Blair Labour and Blair unions, might well have been CP strategy in order not to split the Labour movement. How awful – supporting war.
As a result populism, those on the right against the 1%, has taken the stage. Now we have a far harder battle, how to unite with this populist right, against the 1%. If we don’t accept that this is the way forward, then fighting against the 1% will be self-evidently impossible when the 99% are so divided. How many of the 99% could now be described as on the left and against the 1%?
I suggest that the left in the 99% have dissociated themselves from the populist right, primarily because of the platforms that I have assessed as being part of the populist right:-
1) Work against the 1%, its influence, the lobbyists that Trump described as the swamp.
Whilst the first two are clearly unifying the third is intended to be divisive by the 1%.
However if the power of the 1% is to be minimised, both the populist right and the liberal left need to compromise against the real enemy – the 1%. In the US such a compromise seems almost impossible but it has now become necessary otherwise people are in for a very difficult time with the increasing rise of fascism. This is a compromise that is far more distasteful than the compromise I had at the NUT disco but without it fascism will increasingly take centre stage.
It is my understanding that Trump supporters actually believe he will support them against the 1%. Undoubtedly he has strategic plans for buying off his supporters such as providing jobs in Trumpland, and it is conceivable that whilst adopting 1% and anti-liberal policies (racist, sexist and against LGBT) he will maintain his vote-base.
This division of the 99% between the liberal left and populist right can be laid straightforwardly at the hands of neoliberalism, what has neoliberalism done for these hard-working white people on the right – in Trumpland? Nothing, why would they? The 1% seeks only to exploit for their own profit. But what is far worse, what has the left done for these people? Nothing. The left has fought other legitimate battles, often involving identity politics, and as a result these working people whose personal politics have not been compassionate – such as racist, sexist and anti-LGBT – have lost their incomes and become attracted to the populist right. Yet our interests are the same, and it is self-defeating to turn around and demand that because they are part of the 99% they should change their views and join us. They haven’t, and in the US they have chosen Trump – been conned by Trump – been conned by the 1%.
Because the liberals have supported neoliberalism, have been myopic in the politics they have been involved in, and ignored a significant proportion of the 99% – a proportion that Trump has strategically manipulated, the US now has a 1%-government that will move the US towards fascism.
There is an aspect of US media that I have not seen discussed but is the practise. I watch US comedy progs such as John Oliver, Daily Show, Samantha Bee, Saturday Night Live – these are the only US comedies I find funny. When I am watching them I see nothing but pro-Democrat party propaganda. I see attacks on Trump – OK I agree he is preposterously funny, not attacks on the 1%, and I see the progs increasing divisions within the 99%. These progs add to the problem because they perpetuate and increase the divisions with the rest of the 99%. I can enjoy the humour without being sucked into the division, but can most of the watchers? Can they see that the intended divisions are also part of the 1% mainstream media strategy of dividing the 99%? Without discernment liberals and the left will continue to be part of the problem.
Similarly left-wing media in the UK are attacking and ridiculing Trump, they are perpetuating the situation. The populist white right who are inclined towards UKIP are being ignored by this left-wing, and the 1% are agitating against the 99% using similar tactics to the US. This situation is different to the US because the government is right-wing. However it is functionally the same. Divide the 99% – left against right. Identify the media as left wing, identify the mass movement – labour party and unions – as not being interested in white people. Not being interested in protecting the jobs of white people. Similarly there are attacks on PC in general thus the populist right are ignoring much truth that is spoken by professionals such as teachers, social workers and care-workers. Underlying the rhetoric of this populist right will be blame – blaming the left (liberals in general although the use of that term is not as common in the UK because of the Liberal party and their alliance with Cameron). Neither right nor left are sufficiently focussed on the impact of the 1% in the UK.
Because liberals have supported neoliberalism, the 1% has divided the 99% by financing the populist right. Because liberals have failed to persuade more white people that what liberals are doing is right, we now have a situation where the populist right has grown significantly; liberals and the left do not put forward uniting policies such as fighting the 1% and maybe morality and compassion, they simply promote their own dogma and expect the populist right to accept it. We now have a situation where the liberals, left-wing and populist right need to court each other in order to provide a united front against the 1%. For years the liberals and left have ignored this populist right, and the 1% have managed to cleave apart the 99%. The populist right have peddled preposterous statements such as left-wing mainstream media, and because the left has previously ignored this populism such statements now have significant traction. The 1% have financed this populism with their main purpose being to divide the 99%, and there is such a strength of rhetoric against the left-wing, much of it built on lies and propaganda such as the anti-PC movement, creating unity will be hard. Not all of the populist right can be won over as there is a significant proportion of deplorables, but amongst the rest are compassionate, moral people, who, because of the propaganda, in the US manage to support a horrendous man (Trump) who is immoral and lacking in compassion – being racist sexist and anti-LGBT. In the UK the pattern similarly shows support for the Tories and UKIP, both of which are parties for the 1%. These moral people, quiet white people, need to feel ashamed for supporting Trump and Brexit (and UKIP) but that also means that liberals need to eschew their neoliberalism, and show the non-deplorable on the populist right that there is a unity of interest against the 1%. Both populists and liberals need to change their focus away from each other and towards the real enemy – the 1%.
I have looked a little into the mindset of this moral populist right, and I do not understand it. Yet we must understand each other. Through unity of purpose against the 1% communication needs to be built between the left, liberals and the populist right. This will be difficult because of the years of antagonism, but if we don’t do this Trumps, and to a lesser extent Farages, will continue to arrive on the scene as fascism increases.
To my mind the onus of communicating lies with the liberal left. For all of last century the left has recognised the need to build the mass movement, yet after a century of such building in the US a member of the 1% standing for president has managed to divide the 95% in only one campaign. Not only is the candidate a member of the 1% he is an overt racist and sexist, yet he still split the vote. Why?
1) He promoted racism and sexism and other forms of bigotry. Voicing such enabled the deplorables. But those that should be ashamed also voted for him because they have been convinced that within the propaganda their compassion does not have to recognise racism and sexism.
2) Trump has managed to convince many on the populist right that he is the person to vote for in fighting the 1%. To people on the left this seems ludicrous but this is because the left has failed to see how they have been compromised by neoliberalism. Below I discuss Obama as an example of neoliberal failure. Because of this neoliberal failure leaders on the populist right have been able to convince members of the 99% that mainstream government and media is controlled by the left. How can the liberal left have been so remiss? Because they failed to identify and attack neoliberalism, even with Occupy opening the territory the left within the Democrats failed to take advantage. The Democrats did not identify themselves with Occupy, and so they lost the high ground with regards to attacking the 1%. Left-wing press clearly do such 1%-attacks, the Democrats don’t as a whole, and the populist right have identified the 1%-Democrats as the Left enabling a right-wing vote for the Deplorable.
3) And of course the main failure of the left has been its failure to embrace all in the 99% including those on the right. White racists and white disguised racists have lost their jobs as a result of 1% accumulation. Despite their lack of this compassion many of these people are hard-working trying to look after their families, and the left-wing have not represented them. This is shamefully ignorant as they have had years of analysis, understood that it is only through unity that the 99% can win yet such people have been ostracised because they lack liberal values – and compassion. If you genuinely believe in mass movement politics then you have to embrace white racism with all its faults. By being inclusive these people will hopefully see beyond the racism into recognising their interests are the same as all working people including liberals. At present they don’t and that has been as a consequence of the neoliberal system – a system that too many on the left have accepted.
4) The liberal left have become pre-occupied with identity politics. Rather than attacking the 1% the liberal left have focussed on legitimate issues such as gender equality, racial equality, LGBT equality etc Because they also failed to dissociate themselves from the neoliberalism, much of this focus worked on getting these identity groups better pay. From the perspective of the populist right all that appears is that the left agenda is to increase the pay of these identity groups at their own expense. Identity politics needs to fit into the struggle against the 1%, and this is clearly not the case. This is again a failure of the left to struggle against neoliberalism.
Voting a black man as president in the US alienated this populist right. This could have been alleviated if Obama had adopted policies that included the white right. When you consider the rise of Black Lives Matter, he didn’t even promote the interests of black people. When you examine with discernment, what he has done he has mostly acted as a puppet for the 1%. Prior to the elections and soon after mainstream left-wing media, what little I know of it, were fawning over Obama. But what has he done in the struggle against the 1%?
To conclude, the blame for the rise of the populist right and their manipulation by the 1% into accepting Trump and Brexit can be laid very clearly at the hands of the liberal left. They failed to focus on the real problem – the 1%, and the majority of them have colluded with the neoliberal system. The left have focussed their energies on identity politics thus alienating the populist right who have started to identify with neo-fascist groups. Even moral compassionate white people have thus identified because they have become alienated from the left part of the 99%. It is time for the left to change, re-orient their dominant strategies into fighting the 1%, and work towards including the populist right even though there is divisive racism and sexism within the right.
I would like to see a change in the use of the term neoliberalism – new liberals? How can the populist right recognise the difference between left liberal and neoliberalism? Without such a recognition how can there be a united 99%? A long blog!
Brexit and Trump have also brought home to me another important issue – what is truth? Speaking the truth is part of the 8-Fold Path, Magga (4 Noble Truths), and never has it been more important to recognise the truth when the representatives of the powerful are lying so much.
The first thing I learned about the truth as an adult was when I started on the Path and began to develop insight. At that time seeing people or knowing stuff was so important. Basically it was a reaction to all the lies that education and upbringing had given me. Developing insight is the most important tool for understanding the truth, and very few people discuss this. Insight is definitely not taught in schools!!! At the same time, in the search for truth recognising insight in others became an important aspect of discerning truth. It is not possible for one person to know the truth in all things. So a pre-requisite for truth is insight and the recognition of insight. One key aspect of recognising insight is that of sila – moral integrity. Recognising moral integrity is almost as difficult as recognising insight but there is an obvious corollary to this:-
If a person does not have moral integrity, then they certainly do not have insight and would not see truth as important.
Having moral integrity and talking about morals is definitely not the same thing. There are many people who use morality within religious institutions as a means of control, and yet they themselves do not have morality. In other words religion and morality are not the same although within the religious institutions there are people with insight and moral integrity.
Compassion is the most important fundamental concerning truth. Compassion means the freedom from suffering for all, and in this I include Gaia. So in seeking the truth the person must show compassion. Therefore a person speaking the truth will be working towards compassion, and therefore someone who is sexist, racist, or does not support LBGT rights is not compassionate, and is therefore not speaking the truth. So there are yardsticks, how compassionate is the person and how much insight do they have?
Of course these yardsticks are absolutes, and applying these absolutes in everyday situations especially in something as criminal as politics is very difficult.
But trying to use these yardsticks let’s examine the political situation but not as yet in terms of party politics. What politically exhibits the least compassion? Quite obviously the first political yardstick is war. Who benefits from war? People don’t but corporations do, the global MIC, Military Industrial Complex does. So we have a political question to ask as a benchmark concerning support for the MIC and the corporations – I will use the vernacular the 1%. The most heinous weapon of war is the drone, these are hugely expensive to make and generate huge profits, a definite plus for the MIC. The immigration crisis is blowback, a huge consequence of interfering wars and the heinous use of drones.
These corporations work hand-in-hand with global finance institutions such as banking and insurance. So for me the 1% of MIC, banking and finance are those that control global politics, and politicians who stand against the 1% are those who I support. I have not mentioned BigFood and BigPharma but these corporations have similar interests as the other corporations of the 1%.
For me Occupy stood against the 1%, so I support the Occupy movement. It is my understanding that the Occupy movement stood behind Bernie in the US and Corbyn in the UK. Whether this is true or not what Bernie and Corbyn say stands against the 1%.
But is what they say what they mean, are they telling the truth? Or is it just rhetoric?
In Corbyn’s case I have sufficient personal knowledge of the man to know that he is genuine although I haven’t always agreed with his tactics. In the UK in London from 1985 through to 1992 I was a political activist, and this brought me into contact with Corbyn’s sphere of influence – he was an MP and community activist in North London then. For me there was no doubt about his moral integrity and compassion, but at the time I was active I felt his tactics were mistaken. Now I support him, times change.
I support Bernie. His rhetoric is good, and I have a general feeling that he is moving in the right direction. But because of the lack of personal connection I cannot be so definitive. My intuition makes me feel he merits support, but I would not go beyond that because of my lack of personal contact.
What is most interesting about these two political candidates is that they are both struggling with their party hierarchies. There is a movie I often recall called Lifting the Veil. Whilst the movie does attack both the Labour party and the Democrats, it is more concerned with attacking the system. It is my understanding that the movie claims that the electoral system has been manipulated by the 1% as a media circus, and that there is never any intention of genuine democracy – government by the people for the people. This is in line with the approach of neoliberalism as most notably discussed by Noam Chomsky (for me).
Given that I accept that the political system of neoliberalism is the problem, the question then is how it is to be defeated and what is it to be replaced with? For me compassion means that I am seeking a system that treats people as equals without regards to “race creed or colour”; I would also now add gender preference. This is fundamentally the rights of all people over the few, the 99% compared to the 1%. At present we have governments directed by the 1% against the interests of the 99% who they want to exploit as their workforce. So the question is how do we organise for a government by the 99% (or 100% where the government treats all people as equal)? In determining veracity I would be investigating whether the politician is genuinely interested in a government of and by 100% of the people.
So far I have avoided political terminology in describing truth. And this is because of problems with the media and education. It is my view that western societies (and probably global societies) are inundated with propaganda that is directed by the 1% for their benefit. The terms 1% and 99% are very similar to the Marxist terminology of bourgeois and proletariat, and there has been continued propaganda against Marxists, socialists or any who subscribe to Marx’s theories. There is much to be learnt from Marx’s dialectical approach. But the main point of Marxism is that all the people need to work together against the self-interests of the 1%. In my adult years I have never seen people more divided, and I think propaganda and obfuscation by the 1%-media are the main causes. Typically I have seen mainstream media organisations described as left-wing when I have always described them as right-wing. In terms of compassion this site might well have the same objectives – healthy people, but in terms of the media our descriptions could not be further apart. In this the 1% have been so successful in dividing us.
There is another reason I have not promoted myself as socialist, I believe that sticking to ideas or an ideology is a mistake. While ideas can guide, holding to an ideal restricts the mind. Adhering to dogma stagnates an institution whether it is religious or political, people also become restricting if others are expected to fit in with ideals. So another point of truth is enquiry. Does the truth hold up to inspection of the enquiring mind? For many years dogma has been thrown at me either from the left wing or in religious circles, but none of this dogma alone produces clarification. It is only with insight that dogma moves beyond the idea. Examining a situation in the light of compassion and through enquiry examining the dogma and situation is a process to determine the truth. Does what is said fit a set of rules is not truth-determining?
I often draw parallels between US and UK politics, typically Republicans vs Democrats and Conservatives vs Labour. In the UK historically the conservatives have supported the 1% with token liberal rhetoric for the welfare of the people and nationalist populism in the interests of the white population, and whilst historically Labour grew out of the working-class its representatives are now simply opportunists. In the UK a nationalist populist, Nigel Farage, has arrived on the scene promoting racism, and this populism has recently been accepted by many people – a significant factor in Brexit; his party UKIP primarily attracts disillusioned working-class Labour voters.
The I in UKIP stands for Independence, and I think this term independent is significant. In UKIP’s case it maybe means independent from the EU – Brexit. But in character UKIP supposedly represents an alternative to the conservatives and labour (the neoliberal system). At the same time it discusses the people’s interests over that of an elite – again appealing to an understanding of those against neoliberalism, but its appeal to the British electorate is because it is white nationalist. In my view UKIP is an appeal to white popular racism, and although sadly they are increasing in popularity their only impact so far has been their contribution to Brexit which also included majority conservative influence. In the UK this populism has divided the 99%, and in the UK I believe that is why UKIP has been funded and given more coverage in mainstream media than is warranted for a small party.
In the US the situation is slightly different but the impact of nationalist populism combined with the conservative interests has led to the election of Donald Trump. Because of my compassion I cannot support either UKIP or Trump because of their racism – and in Trump’s case overt sexism. (I suspect also LGBT issues but I am not certain of that). Initially I said that if a person does not have moral integrity I cannot believe that they will tell the truth, that applies particularly for Trump although I also distrust Farage.
In the US many people rue the election because Hillary was not elected. However in the neoliberal system Hillary represented the 1%-system elite of the Democrat party, and so she lost the populist vote. For the same reason support from Occupy was not strong because of the same neoliberalism, and because of the way the Democrat party cut out Bernie.
In terms of truth it is worth examining how events have panned out in terms of the way they have benefitted the 1%. Particularly in the US nationalist populism has benefitted the 1% by splitting the 99%. The populists have however elected a member of the 1% to deliver an anti-1% platform, can that ever happen? We will have to wait and see. Is Trump a political “whistleblower”?
In terms of truth this splitting is very important because it explains much that goes on with populism. Within the framework of blaming the elite the primary purpose of the populism is division. When you examine much of the analysis in both camps it places the source of the problem with the 1%. Two important platforms of US populism were “draining the swamp” and “against Wall Street”, both of which any left-winger would be happy to support. But then comes the division because the most important attack politically is to blame the left. And here is the inconsistency, the swamp and Wall Street are not the Left.
When considering the populism we have to examine emphasis. The 1% have no problem with being blamed if their strategy of dividing the 99% works so the rise of this nationalist populism just benefits them. For me the main political truth is that the 1% cause our problems, and that we should all fight against the influence of the 1%. In blaming the 1% I seek unity against the 1%, and seek strategies that negate their financial power and influence. This strategy unites all working people, it unites small business owners who are trying to balance their books, but it works against people who manipulate financial laws for their own profit. Such small business owners do not go bankrupt and start up again. Such people pay taxes however unfair the tax system might be because those taxes provide education and infrastructure for ordinary working people. The 99% have all this in common, and if we all worked together then the 1% cannot exploit us.
However divided we become manipulable so it is in the interest of the 99% to divide the left and right. The internet has succeeded in doing this. By investing in the internet the 1% have developed websites that present their divisive populism.
At the same time populism has inconsistencies because the strategy is division and not the interests of the people themselves. The government is described as left-wing and yet a major popular platform is the swamp – the revolving door of the 1% that controls the government. How can the government be left-wing and 1%-controlled? And Trump himself is a major inconsistency, how can a member of the 1% be interested in fighting 1%-control? However these inconsistencies don’t matter if the purpose is division, that division is a consistent purpose:-
Consistency – division
Such inconsistency is for me a good measure of the truth.
Where next do I go in terms of the truth? Over the years I have developed mechanisms for determining the truth. These are based primarily on the arena of politics that I know – what has been called the “left”. I know these people, and have developed some insight into their degree of truth-telling. Over the years I have seen how important the truth is to the left wing, if there are any doubts in the veracity of a left-wing statement there is a huge mainstream backlash. More responsible left-wing people are very careful with the truth, but that is not all left-wingers for sure with some of the more vociferous getting carried away with rhetoric; so there has to be truth-discernment from within. Based on my experience and insight I would use certain left-wing evidence and avoid the rhetoric. This can only be a personal approach to truth.
Political correctness is also worth discussing when examining the truth. PC developed throughout my lifetime, and in my view it developed because language was a significant part of racism and sexism. Demanding that people were not racist or sexist in the language they used was a good position when trying to remove the embedded racism and sexism in society. As a result racists and sexists were expected to improve their use of language. This gave an illusion that people were less racist or sexist but in the UK Brexit showed that people had not truly changed. At the same time there has been a backlash against the “PC police”, people who have too vehemently reinforced the change of language without helping people change their attitudes. With UKIP and Trump those people who have been straitjacketed by the PC police have been allowed to express their racism and sexism. Because there was a repression there has been a backlash against PC in general, and as a result truth has suffered because much truth came out of the research those people did.
At the same time it is populist to reject what PC people have said because populism attacks the left wing. As I have said, this is a change that I find hard to understand as the government has always been a puppet of the 1% so for populism to claim government is left wing is difficult for me to grasp. Again this is an indication as to the ability of the 1% to influence. Look at what has happened. The 1% continue to dominate and their profits continue to increase despite the crash of 2008. Governments have applied austerity measures as a consequence, awarded bankers bonuses, and yet populism has divided the 99% so that there is an obfuscation concerning the left wing. The power of money is amazing.
So to conclude how I determine truth:-
1) Overlying everything else is compassion
Finally since this has been mainly concerning truth in politics, I ask that we recognise a political delusion that has been perpetrated. Most people vote for economic reasons ie vote in a way that they think will give them most money. Vote for greed. When greed is voted for we get manipulated by the greedy. Why not change the way we vote to that of compassion, vote for people who genuinely talk about caring for others and the environment. This would change the political arena.
Trump upset me – quite depressed, and led me to a rethink. Am I sufficiently up-to-date and in touch if I didn’t see it coming? This is a summary of my blogs to give a context.
In Trumped I guess at the impact. In Left supports Trump I attack a Jewish activist who is very knowledgeable but is missing an understanding of neocolonialism – the Veil and elections. Blame the liberals takes a similar tack about the Veil – neocolonialism.
Shame of White People begins to look at the real problem – the racism of white people, why aren’t these people ashamed to vote for a DEPLORABLE like Trump? 53% of white women voted for a blatant sexist and exploiter of women, how can they? Growing up afraid starts to look at my background community – the white people who voted for Brexit and who are typical of the silent Trump supporters. In Brexit is racist I make it clear that I see Brexit as a racist vote, and point to the problem that is not the deplorables but “nice” white people. In “nice” white people I detail a description of the demographic of the silent foolish racist white people who have supported Brexit and Trump. In Rising Fascism I point out the fascism that these “nice” racist fools have been tricked into creating. And finally I look at what the left needs to do to consolidate.
To what avail? These “nice” white people will be bought off and matters will get worse. At least I know not to listen when people tell me racism is better now, and millennials are you any different to the mentalities of the hippies and so on I grew up with whose materialism changed them to Brexit? Millennials when you are invested in the economy will you also be fooled into this “nice” white racist position – especially when the rising fascism will mean that good understanding through controlled media will not be as easily accessible?
The insecurity surrounding the Trump presidency is creating fear throughout the world, and fans the ego of this horrendous man. When you look at Hillary you see a career politician, a paid-up member of the Veil and a Bilderberg agent. With Trump nothing is certain, and much of the following is speculation.
Liberals see the vote as an aberrance that can be fought and possibly reigned in but I see it as far worse than this. About the only policy that he has been democratically certified for is no-policy. There appears to have been an electoral deal – Carrier. Apparently they had said they would move their plant to Mexico, now Trump has given them tax breaks maintaining some of the jobs in Indiana – his heartland. The cost of these jobs seems prohibitive, and effectively the tax-payer has funded a new automated Carrier plant.
This type of manipulation, if repeated, will make Trump a favourite with business and his “nice” white people leading to a further presidency. I foresee a term in office that will be 100% self-serving – promotion of his presidency and his business with targeted benefits for his voters.
What this means for the rest of us is not certain. Government will not act as a break on the wars-for-profit hawks behind the scenes of Washington. At the same time he will not act as a break to the Wall Street demons so long as they will enable his second term; his finance picks support Wall Street. He has not drained the “swamp”, but given them access through his picks. If the “nice” white people get jobs and his “nice” white communities are favoured, they will ignore the promises about the “swamp” – ultimately this personal wealth is all that interests the racism of “nice” white people.
Who does it look bad for? The state sector and the minorities. The state sector offers him nothing, and he has no votes there. As for the minorities the future looks bleak. On the campaign trail Trump gathered around him a violent mob of horrendous people, these people Hillary accurately described as deplorables:-
For some reason the campaign withdrew this slur, I don’t understand this. Those deplorables will always vote Republican – or not at all; Democrats have no chance with those votes. But they were never Trump’s target audience. His target was the Klauses, arrogant white people connected to small businesses who seek security at whatever compassionate cost. For these “nice” white people there is no concern for the wider society, their communities are relatively peaceful and there is still a community ethic. They help each other, and look after each other. The costs of the wider society are just a drain on their resources. Their contact with minorities is limited, the minorities who live up the road fit into their community and will be helped as would any of their neighbours. The slums and the ghettoes of the inner cities are not their problem. Trump need not target the compassionate society to maintain his votebase.
Hillary was not talking about “nice” white people when she talked of deplorables. She said 50% of Trump supporters were deplorable. I am ashamed that the community I was born in were part of the other 50%. I am ashamed of them, I am ashamed for them, and I am sad that they are not ashamed. Hillary’s tactic was to try to separate the deplorables from “nice” white people, and to try to make those “nice” white people think for themselves. The tactic failed miserably but personally I don’t think the tactic was wrong but she did not follow through on it.
Basically people will be left to fend for themselves, and this suits the relative affluence of rural white societies. But in the inner cities this will lead to greater vulnerability to gang culture.
As for Muslims there will be increased Islamophobia where every Muslim will be seen as a terrorist. Because Trump has given credence to the deplorables, they will feel they have the right to demand the US for the whites. This would be especially so given some of the right-wing picks of the Trump government. As Trump will not want to “waste” money policing the inner cities and protecting the Muslims from these deplorables, their lives will become much worse – suffering random acts of violence.
The insecurity of the Hispanic community will worsen. Throughout his campaign there has been talk of the wall and Mexican rapists, this will allow the deplorables to be violent to Hispanics. At the same time Trump will continue to allow cheap labour where his votes are not affected, I am not sure how this will work; it will be a balance in which he will curry favour with business to enable jobs for his voters.
This of course will lead to a rise in racism, why do I see it as a rise in fascism? Here is wiki on fascism. Reading this do you not see mega-similarities with the Trump campaign – with Brexit. The fear of war that was at the basis of my upbringing has not dissipated but morphed into racism, and appeals to that racism echoes authoritarian nationalism– the basis of fascism. “Nice” white people who believe in their own compassion are hastening the emergence of fascism as a solution, how can that be??