Friday, 24 March 2017

Suicide killers and the limits of the liberal imagination

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(Someone commented on this tweet: 'Look how magnificent we are when we die! We need more diversity on the terrorist side.')


The Westminster murderer came from Deptford in North Kent and not from a Muslim background. He was born Adrian Elms, to a white mother and a black father. He was a thug who had a long history of violent crime. He converted to Islam (like the man who beheaded Drummer Rigby in Woolwich and several other murderers), changed his name to Khalid Masood and grew a beard without a moustache.

He spent a lot of time in prison and some time in Saudi Arabia.

In his CV, which was sent out a few weeks ago, he described himself as “British”, “friendly and approachable” and a good listener. 


What is to be done to stop such people? I really do not know. But it is interesting to read the suggestions made in the press, which make clear the limits of the liberal imagination.

And, this time, by liberal I mean the word in all its seemingly mutually contradictory senses: the big-state liberalism of Hillary Clinton and the European Union and the small-state, classical liberalism of the Victorian liberals. 

The Times editorial this morning expresses the liberal response to Islamism when it says, "It is baffling to most people that decades of exposure to British values can leave someone so willing to kill and be killed in a death cult masquerading as a religion".

Do you find it baffling, dear reader, that exposure to 'British values' does not deter suicide killers? I don't. Any more than going to a church school prevents people growing up to be thieves or adulterers. 

In fact, there is much about British values to dislike, from many widely differing points of view. Even if there were not, there is no limit to how contrarian or perverse human beings often are.

Violent Islamism, like fascism, communism, the Green movement and other extremist nonsense, is a critique of British values. 

But my point is that we should all urgently rethink the world view that not only finds evil baffling but finds extremism baffling. 

Human beings are dangerous. Out of the crooked timbers of mankind no straight thing was ever made. De Maistre said civilisation depended on the hangman. Now that hanging has been abolished, civilisation depends on powerful armies, an effective police and on prisons - yet prisons are the universities where Islamists are created. Was it in prison that Elms was converted to Islam and became Masood?

The Times talks about the successful de-Nazification of Germany but de-Nazification was effective because Germans had perished in huge numbers during two world wars that they had lost, because Germany was divided, ruled by foreigners and a third of Germany was enduring Communism. The discovery of the millions of Jews killed in gas chambers played a part too, though only in West Germany, not in socialist East Germany.

I'd say that Islamism resembles the extremism that swirled around Vienna and Munich before and immediately after the 1914-18 War rather than the situation in 1945.





18 comments:

  1. David in Banja Luka24 March 2017 at 15:56

    Paul,
    A blog worth reading and re-reading several times.
    David

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    1. How nice of you to say so. It was jotted down hastily.

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  2. The West should ban Islam. Maybe a far reach to compare to post war Germany banning Naziism.

    Maybe if they can be pushed back to the hinterlands, it would be best. And, then if they need to be killed, better in Mosul than Piccadilly.

    But, I'm the violent non forgiving sort.

    If you keep punching me in the face, at some time, I either get mad and punch you back or live with the punches. Then it's my fault for living with it and not fighting back, That is the West right now, I fear. We (you) have given up and are willing to keep getting punched in the fact.

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    1. The West should ban Islam. Maybe a far reach to compare to post war Germany banning Naziism.

      The answer is absurdly simple. It's the answer Steve Sailer has been going on about for years. Don't invade the world and don't invite the world. Don't bomb other people's countries and don't invade other people's countries. And don't invite millions of people from the Third World into your own country. It's that simple.

      It's the idiotic policies of successive British governments that have made Islam a problem for Britain. British governments (and French governments and US governments) created this mess.

      This crisis didn't just magically materialise. Western governments deliberately and with malice aforethought manufactured the crisis.

      If you want someone to blame start with Tony Blair. And David Cameron. And Theresa May. The list goes all the way back to Harold MacMillan but he's dead. Blair and Cameron and May are alive - so they could be put on trial for treason.

      But then British voters voted for these traitors so they really have nobody to blame but themselves. It was obvious decades ago that these insane policies were going to lead to disaster but people went right on voting for the very parties that meant to destroy them.

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    2. The fact is only reason that Islam has any presence in Europe is due to the "de-nazification" (i.e. Marxification) of the West which was the inevitable result of the allied victory in that war. Say what you like about fascism but if the bad guys like Degrelle had succeded, Europeans would be conquering Mars now instead of being conquered by African and Arab Muslims.

      We have declined so far and so fast that we are even nostalgic for the Europe of the 1970s that Degrelle describes in this clip as chaotic and miserable.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dUki2-kzJO0

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    3. Nazi's on Mars? I think there was Heinlein juvenile with
      a similar plot?

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    4. The fact is only reason that Islam has any presence in Europe is due to the "de-nazification" (i.e. Marxification) of the West which was the inevitable result of the allied victory in that war.

      The "de-nazification" does seem to have been accompanied by emasculation.

      But it has nothing to do with Marxification. What's happening in Europe today is the end-product of liberal democracy.

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    5. dfordoom

      You are clearly one of the craven and obsequious gender that I find most loathsome in the West these days.

      a. -- one who lives under the history and auspices of the West and maligns and blames.

      b-- a limey who complains of Empire yet is guilt ridden for his own history.

      either way, you are contemptible for your finger pointing.

      and, it's meaningless... conquer die or convert.

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    6. b-- a limey who complains of Empire yet is guilt ridden for his own history.

      I'm not a limey.

      And I'm not guilt ridden.

      either way, you are contemptible for your finger pointing.

      Because it's bad to admit that sometimes the West has been, and still is, in the wrong? Perhaps it's better to pretend that we're always the good guys, the White Hats, just like in the old westerns? If we pretend really hard it will come true.

      Being a grown-up means developing a sense of perspective and being honest with oneself. The West is not responsible for all the ills of the world. The West is not even responsible for most of the ills of the world. But it is responsible for some. And the West is certainly responsible for a good deal of the trouble in the Middle East, the very trouble that is fueling terrorism. That doesn't mean we should wallow in guilt or self-hatred over it. What we should do is throw out the appalling politicians who got us into this mess. A good start for the Brits would be to get rid of both Labor and the Tories.

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  3. I think that the exposure these lost souls get in the West is not to Western values, but to a caricature of the traditional Western values, devoid of all substance. I suppose it is not surprising to see people exposed to this caricature, become violent. It makes zero sense to live in a value-less world where everything is relative.
    It has been said many times that the death of reason creates monsters, and here they are.
    What's surprising is that the man was 52?
    Yes depressing times, when only the hangman seems to be the solution, and maybe it is so.

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    1. I think that the exposure these lost souls get in the West is not to Western values, but to a caricature of the traditional Western values, devoid of all substance.

      It could be argued that the problem is that all we have in the West these days is a caricature of the traditional Western values. In fact the problem is that Muslims see the West as it is today all too clearly.

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    2. Just came across this article about India, so somewhat unrelated, but one phrase reminded me of this conversation: "Without Reason, the Only Stable Institution is a Tribe: It has been 70 years since the British left India. In these years, Indians have systemically destroyed what the British left behind by asserting their tribal, superstitious and irrational culture". http://www.acting-man.com/?p=48912 . Will reason prevail in Britain itself?

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  4. I think you've made a good point about the limits to the liberal imagination.

    One of the things liberals can't comprehend is religion. They treat religion the way they treat everything else - as a sociological phenomenon. They're incapable of understanding people who actually believe in God.

    Liberals are also incapable of understanding people who are prepared to die for their beliefs. Liberals are prepared to kill for their beliefs (or at least they're prepared to pay others to do the killing for them) but they're not prepared to die for those beliefs. Martyrdom is not a liberal thing.

    The Old School Leftists would have understood, but there aren't any of them left.

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  5. It is not too much of a stretch of the imagination to think that acts like this may become more frequent as individuals decide to carry out such attacks just for "the heck of it".

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  6. I imagine so. I imagine that mentally disturbed people are very sensitive to the zeitgeist on a subconscious level. From the mentally disturbed come many criminals, some artists, mystics and prophets.

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    1. I imagine so. I imagine that mentally disturbed people are very sensitive to the zeitgeist on a subconscious level.

      The worry today is the combination of mental disturbance with drugs. Especially cannabis. Combine an innate tendency to paranoia with cannabis and you have a bomb just waiting to go off.

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  7. Some believe mental illness can get mixed up with evil cosmic forces or demons. I find it hard to decide if psychopaths are possessed or simply inhuman. They could be both. This man was described by someone who knew him as a psychopath. Interesting that he was not a loner unlike so many mass killers. He was popular at school and excelled at sport. I remember Garrison Keilor complaining on behalf of.his fellow loners about this. At one time he was the only non-white in the Tunbridge Wells National Front. The murderer, I mean, not Mr Keilor.

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