Friday, October 30, 2009

What does the term "Far Right" mean?

The term "Far Right" evokes the fear of tyranny; of jackboots; of oppressive, cruel government; the elimination of individual freedoms, happiness; and of the crushing of the human spirit.

In short it evokes the image of Hitler and Nazi Germany. Why then are free-market, pro-individual rights thinkers considered “far-right?” Because right is no longer a term that has a meaning on its own; it simply means not-left. Whatever the etymological origins of the term left and right (French Revolution) it no longer stands on its own. Whatever philosophy is not left and opposes the left is now considered right. The more it opposes whatever currently stands for left the more it is called right.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

What makes one Left-Wing or Right-Wing?

Are there points or positions that all left wing people share? Are there points which all right wing people share? What makes someone left or right wing?

If you are pro-choice are you left or right wing? If so, what about abortion is left or right wing? Can you be left-wing and not be pro-choice? Can you be right-wing and be pro-choice?

For years socialist countries were opposed to abortion in their attempt to keep population levels high? Does that mean that being pro-choice is really "right wing?" No, the contrary decision by the Chinese to lower their population and increase abortion shows that there is nothing intrinsically "left" or "right" about abortion.

What about gay marriage? Can you be left-wing and be against it or be right-wing and be for it? If gay rights, culminating in gay marriage, was a left-wing issue then gay marriage, or at least greater rights for gays, would have been achieved in the former Soviet Union, China, Eastern Europe, Cuba, North Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia and other places in the world which have embraced Marxist-Leninist philosophy.

Instead we saw homosexual men and women imprisoned and executed simply for being gay excuse me, for being a counter-revolutionary. The Soviet Union, Eastern Europe, China, and revolutionaries such as Che Guevara, considered homosexuality to be part-and-parcel of the bourgeois, decadent west.

What makes someone Left or Right? It's simple: do you want to live in a state which respects individual liberty or a state where experts/bureaucrats/those-who-know-better/dictators make virtually all decisions for you.

Is it more complicated than that? Yes. But not much - as it all boils down to the nature of individual liberty.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Soldiers Sent Unprepared to Combat Zones

Here's a disgusting story from France24.

The ten lightly-armed French soldiers who were on patrol with other members of their parachutist regiment were killed on August 18, 2008 after being ambushed by an estimated 170 Taliban fighters, only weeks after taking over from Italian troops in what seemed a comparatively peaceful district 65 kilometres east of Kabul. The Italian forces they had replaced in July had suffered only one combat death in the previous year.

“The Times is alleging that the Italian secret service has been involved in paying off the local Taliban to allow Italian civil reconstruction workers to get into that area and do projects… The problem seems to be that the Italians didn’t inform the French of this”, said Jon Boone, the Guardian correspondent for FRANCE 24.

The ambushed French patrol was trapped overnight by heavy insurgent fire, until airstrikes called in by US Special Forces forced the Taliban to withdraw.

“They had no heavy weapons, no pre-arranged air support, no artillery support and not enough radios (…) The French were carrying just two medium machine guns and 100 rounds of ammunition per man”, said a senior NATO official quoted by The Times.

A mix of Taliban and insurgent Hezb-i-Islami fighters claimed responsibility for the attacks, which shocked France after it emerged that many of the bodies of the dead soldiers had been mutilated after they had died.

Looks like Sarkozy is not the Guilliani of France. The point is not that Italy may or may not have bribed local Afghanis. The point is that soldiers were sent unprepared into a combat zone.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Reform of Islam

An excellent article by Abolhassan Bani-Sadr focusing on Islam and Afghanistan but really about the fight for the Muslim soul.
Afghanistan is a deeply religious society, but the dominant interpretations of Islam, as in most Islamic countries, is one that fosters submission to force. More specifically, under existing sharia law, which is completely detached from the message of the Koran, human beings are understood to be at the service of religion and not vice-versa. Because this belief is entrenched deeply in the popular psyche, the struggle for social and political dominance expresses itself through religious discourse.

Religion has become about power. The most abhorrent form of this violence, suicide bombing, is the direct result of the dominance of a religious interpretation that sanctifies violence. Unless this changes, religion in Afghanistan will continue to serve the fundamentalist powers and those who are nourished by the politics of fear.

What is required instead is a revival of the repressed traditions of Islamic thought and practice, such as the concept of "Tawhid." This is a worldview that regards the whole of existence as a single form. There is no separation between everything existing. The whole of existence is a single living and conscious organism, possessing will, intelligence, feeling, and purpose. This encompassing existence is damaged by conflict and by separation from others.

Through this lens, the exercise of submission to power is regarded as anti-Islamic rather than as intrinsic to the faith. The expansion of freedom and development is understood as the pathway to the divine. From this perspective, human beings are created with the talents, rights, and responsibilities of initiative and self-determination.

All forms of censorship within "self" and "society" have to be removed because they are obstacles on the path to realization. This means that no individual or group can legitimately dominate another, and that challenging all forms of domination in oneself and others is an ethical responsibility. This Islam is a religion of freedom.

What does this mean in practical terms? The task of revolutionizing Islam in Afghanistan should begin with attention to the plight of women. Presently, half the population is absent from the public domain, veiled from head to toe, branded as inferior to men and treated as sexual objects to be kept at home

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Sweating with the Socialists

This is old but I've just found it.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Facebook: The Obama and Bush Story

A Facebook poll on killing President Obama has created an uproar, as it should have. We do not want to go down the road of killing political opponents.

And yet where is outrage regarding killing President Bush? Five minutes searching Facebook came up with numerous "Kill Bush," "BushHitler" responses.

The graphic with George Bush Hanging was cropped and altered to fit the width constraints of the blog. The complete photos and descriptions are up at The Classical

Obama Socialism

Remember the morons who said that the Obama Socialism image was racist and offensive. Which is more offensive?

At Zombietimes as well. (Yes I did think of it before I saw it at Zombie, that's why it's posted here.)

Strange Fruit, Obama and Bush Hatred

Imagine if Obama was hung in effigy as Bush is here. What would the outcry be?

R A C I S T!

hmmm. A double-fucking standard.

Bush Hatred

There is a blindness in people, especially partisans, where they think the best of those they are temporarily aligned with and the worse of their politican enemies. I'm not saying anything new here but it comes to mind as I have discussions with otherwise intelligent people regarding the "current political discourse." They seem to think that the animosity towards Obama is frighting and unparallelled since the Kennedy assassination, or the Rabin assassination in Israel. And yet they forget the animosity towards Bush.

I'm told that the animosity towards Bush was over policy. Well can't the same be said about those opposing Obama? In addition Obama polls considerably higher than do his policy objectives. This was true 6 months ago when his approval was in the 60s and even before he was elected. Obama is a likeable guy.

To those who say the left was nowhere as despicable, nowhere as disrespectful, nowhere as hateful as the right is today I have a few photos for you. I pulled most of them from

Friday, October 2, 2009

Another Obama Pledge

Tell me this isn't fu*king creepy.

Obama Nation Billboard

How do you like your change now???
They are coming for you! The Taxpayer.
1st & 2nd amendments are in jeopardy.

I would have worded it differently. I don't think there will be a play on the Second Amendment in the near future. Loved the Hammer and Sickle. All I can say is Thank You to the people who created and paid for this billboard.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Land of the Free and Home of the Brave

Welcome to liberaltopia. Apparantly in some school districts it is against the law to ride a bicycle or walk to school. Ah, the joys of a paternalistic government. Welcome to our future if we continue down the present road. The article below refers to the Saratoga Springs school district in the great state of Florida.

While the school district does not allow elementary school or Maple Avenue students to ride bikes to school, that could change in the coming weeks, Superintendent Janice White said. The Board of Education could vote to amend the policy on Oct. 13, when it is scheduled to discuss a recommendation from a district-formed committee.

"Supervised, parent/guardian bike riding may be permitted at specific sites in the future," White said in an interview Friday. The school has no legal responsibility over what occurs on Route 9, she added.

The biking debate started last spring, when school district officials told Kaddo Marino that Adam was violating school rules by biking to class. Walking to the school also is not permitted.

Kaddo Marino challenged the policy and asked the school board to change it. The district charged a committee to review the rule, which was instituted in 1994.

At the start of school in September, Kaddo Marino thought that she had a nonverbal agreement with school officials to allow her son to ride his bike until a new policy was resolved. But on the night before classes started, school authorities called parents to say that walking and biking to school would not be tolerated.

When the pair stuck with their plan, they were met by school administrators and a state trooper, who emphasized that biking was prohibited, Kaddo Marino said.

Read more:

Euroscepticism, A great article

I despise the way the European Union is going. It's a tyranny waiting to happen.

From The Independent:
It is natural for anyone who cherishes the democratic process to lament that their chances of having any contact with their MEP – or even knowing who he or she is – is about as great as winning the National Lottery. And it says little for the incorruptibility of this great European institution that its reaction to having the whistle blown on its own finances was to sack the brave woman – its own chief accountant – who exposed the malpractice. Neither would a true democrat rely on that tired old line that Euroenthusiasts still trot out: that we had a referendum on Europe, and we voted "yes". That vote was in 1975, which means that no one under the age of 52 had the chance to participate; and it was, in any case, on membership of the European Economic Community, whose name alone should be sufficient to suggest that we are talking about a very different body to that European Union whose advances we seem powerless to resist.

But above all, it is the EU's attitude towards democracy itself that we should question. Why is Ireland having a second referendum? The answer is that like the Danes before them, at the time of Maastricht, they voted on a treaty: and they gave the wrong answer.

I especially like the part Labour liking the problem. That's politicians for you. There is no care about the issue at hand, only that it causes problems to their adversary.

Is it just like the Republicans and Medicare? No. Not quite.

It's a solution without a problem

The Senate Finance Committee Democrats rejected a proposal which required that immigrants prove their identity with photo identification when signing up for federal healthcare programs. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) said that current law and the healthcare bill under consideration are too lax and leave the door open to illegal immigrants defrauding the government using false or stolen identities to obtain benefits.

Democratic Sen. Jeff Bingaman, New Mexico, disagrees. He thinks that the type of fraud Grassley said he wants to prevent is highly uncommon. "The way I see the amendment, it's a solution without a problem," Bingaman said.

If it's highly uncommon then why not agree to it? You calm a fear and perhaps get more votes for the total bill, all in exchange for agreeing to something that isn't a problem in the first place.

Infant Mortality

Bad United States Bad. We have higher rates of infant mortality than in the EU. Why is that? Can it be explained by something aside from the fact that the US does not have socialized medicine?

The US tabulates every birth, illegal-immigrant and citzen, even in poor and remote areas. Is France including the infant deaths in the banlieus? I think not.

France is a wonderfully advanced country, especially in comparison to fat, ignorant Americans. France, as it is said, has a larger percentage of its population going to higher education. Of course the US counts the entire population and France ignores those that are not on college track.

So, as with the infant mortality issue, it is a fradulent comparison. To those devotes of the NYTs how do you explain this. Is it deception on the part of the media or ignorance?