Wednesday, July 26, 2006


The Guru of the American far Left would have to be Noam Chomsky, and, like most gurus, he makes a good thing out of it. But he is marginal to mainstream politics. For the American mainstream Left at the moment, the guru seems to be none other than the hilarious George Lakoff. Lakoff has hitched his wagon to a rather wacky idea that even a few conservatives fasten on to at times: The idea that Leftism is feminine and conservatism is masculine. How GWB and John Kerry split the female vote roughly 50/50 in the last presidential race, such people never seem to explain. And that Joe Stalin sure was a motherly, feminine character wasn't he?

I think you could make a case that the conservative concern for the individual makes conservatives more motherly but the whole debate takes place in a fact-free universe so is not really worth having. For what it's worth, however, I have put together a more extended look at Lakoff's claims here.

What prompted this post is that Lakoff has recently written a book in which he purports to tell Leftists how to win elections and there is a good review of it here. What the review points out is that Lakoff is openly advocating the twisting of language. One would have thought that the Leftists who have renamed racial discrimination as "affirmative action" and killing babies as being "pro-choice", would hardly need to be taught that lesson! Long ago, however, Orwell warned us about the Leftist twisting of language to mean the opposite of what it appears to say so Lakoff is nothing new. That Lakoff is openly advocating what Orwell satirized is however a sad testimony to his personal self-absorption and the general Leftist inability to learn from history.

Speaking of history, one of Lakoff's central proposals is to redefine "freedom" to mean more or less its opposite. Who does that remind you of? It reminds me of an essay called "The Nature of Spirit" by G.W.F. Hegel (1770-1831). Hegel's basic idea there was also to redefine "freedom" to mean its opposite. See here (or here). Hegel was of course the inspiration of Karl Marx.



Good one!: "There is an ill-advised and troublesome effort calling for total or selective divestment from corporations that do business with Israel, and to pressure others, such as Caterpillar Inc., to stop selling products to Israel. Preying on the emotions of well-meaning individuals who think that they are contributing to peace, these divestment campaigns coincides with other efforts which seek to undermine Israel's self-defense, its economy and its legitimacy, and to pressure Israel to make concessions during peace negotiations with the Palestinians. It is time to make it clear that these tactics will not work," Miller said... Miller announced that the American Jewish Congress is launching a coordinated effort in opposition to the divestment campaign and to support Israel's economy overall. These include the following steps: AJ Congress has bought shares of Caterpillar stock and will urge Caterpillar directors and officers to refuse to buckle under pressure; it will use its shares to oppose a shareholder resolution opposing equipment sales to Israel or any entity of the Israeli government... AJ Congress will seek pledges of investment in all companies targeted for divestment, and launch a series of advertisements in financial publications urging investment.

Israel's War: Judged By the Hour: "I'm confused. How long have we been lingering in Iraq? Three years? Four? And how many people are dying, not to mention the trillions of US tax dollars going towards funding this war? Hey, I am not complaining. The extreme Islamists in Iraq are bad guys, who are a threat to their region and the world, and I support our troops, who are doing their best to prevent Islamist expansion beyond that region, and to protect us at home. Yet, there is no outcry to remove forces immediately or rush to United Nation's resolutions. However, just when you would think the Los Angeles Times and their biased ilk could not get any worse, sure enough they prove us wrong.... can someone tell me why, when Israel, after finally reaching her breaking point and no longer able to tolerate the continued Hamas and Hezbollah missile attacks, using Iranian katyusha and other long-range rockets, moves to protect herself, as any sovereign country has a right and duty to do, world opinion is already rushing in to protect the terrorists?"

Arafat got a "peace" Nobel too: "Nobel peace laureate Betty Williams displayed a flash of her feisty Irish spirit yesterday, lashing out at US President George W.Bush during a speech to hundreds of schoolchildren. Campaigning on the rights of young people at the Earth Dialogues forum, being held in Brisbane, Ms Williams spoke passionately about the deaths of innocent children during wartime, particularly in the Middle East, and lambasted Mr Bush. "I have a very hard time with this word 'non-violence', because I don't believe that I am non-violent," said Ms Williams, 64. "Right now, I would love to kill George Bush."

"Three strikes and you're out" is working: "Fear of crime -- once an obsession -- appears to have faded as a major concern for Californians, and for good reason. The state Department of Justice reported recently that the number of violent crimes committed in California dropped from nearly 350,000 in 1992 to well under 200,000 last year, and when population growth is included, the actual violent crime rate is just half of what it was then. There's been a similar, if slightly less dramatic, drop in property crimes. [Locking crooks up for longer reduces crime -- How surprising!]

Old-fashioned France: "Britons who buy a home in France are more likely to be retired local government officers from northern England than wealthy advertising executives from the South East. The typical couple are aged over 50, on a moderate income, and are in search of a land they believe resembles Britain 50 years ago. Those are among the findings of the most comprehensive study of families planning to join the estimated 500,000 or so British home-owners in France. The wealthy upper-class Britons who first settled in the Dordogne three decades ago have given way to the middle classes. French village mayors complain that many spend all their money on their new home and then live off generous French social security... An overwhelming majority wanted to live in the French countryside, which they defined as similar to their vision of 1950s Britain. They hoped to find small, traditional communities where everyone knew each other, where human relations were pleasant, where the pace of life was relaxed and where there was a baker, a cafe and a church."

European inertia at work: "Europeans are taking the concept of driving under the influence to a whole new level. With increasing competition at all but the highest levels of the market from the so-called New World winemakers--notably Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Chile--the European Union's notorious lake of surplus wine is turning into an inland sea, and government subsidies of around $630 million a year are encouraging vintners to transform their unsold plonk into industrial alcohol and even automobile fuel. This year, nearly a billion bottles' worth of French and Italian wine are expected to meet that ignominious end."



"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

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