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A long silence from the luvvies

Blogger, film scriptwriter and novelist Roger Simon notes that there have not been many sounds of disgust from his Hollywood backyard at the murder of Dutch film-maker, Theo Van Gogh (a descendant of the artist) on November 2nd.

I must say there has not been a huge amount of noise from our own British film-makers, documentary producers and big shot journalists, either. I get the distinct feeling that a lot of folk in the artistic community are simply scared or uninterested that a man who made a film about the treatment of women in Islamic culture was shot in broad daylight in Holland, that most laid-back of nations.

I find that there is something rather shabby about this silence. I hope to be proven wrong and that all those who have cause to value freedom of speech and the right to challenge certain ideas will speak out at the brutal murder of Mr Van Gogh.

54 comments to A long silence from the luvvies

  • J

    I’ve never quite understood why the death of a journalist is worse than the death of someone else. I’m not aware that this person was a particularly noteworthy filmaker.

    It’s sad, but people get murdered by extremists all the time. This is not substantially different from doctors being killed for performing abortions, or scientists being killed for performing vivisection, or gays being killed for being gay.

    It all sucks, but this is nothing special. To be honest I never had much sympathy for Rushdie either, so I guess I’m in a minority here.

  • R C Dean

    More confirmation, if anyone needed it, that the rather noisy segment of the artistic community that pretends to be anti-war and anti-Bush is, in fact, at some level on the other side.

    No other explanation is consistent with their silence about the killing of one of their own. Mere criticism of one of their own by some people draws forth the most astonishing and strenuous screeds and objections, but the actual killing of a film-maker because of the content of his work by one of our enemies draws only . . . silence.

    Obviously, the only variable at work is the political identity of the attacker. If the source of the criticism/attack holds certain political views, then the attack is illegitimate, hateful, etc. If the source of the attack holds other political views, well, there is nothing to be said, even if the attack is murder.

    On. The. Other. Side.

  • J

    Much as I dislike all that is Hollywood (hell, all that is LA), I don’t think it’s much criticism to say that they are politically biased. If anyone with such a powerfull platform as the Hollywood A and B lists _didn’t_ use that platform to selectively promote their own world view, I’d be amazed.

    If this guy had made a documentary about the Indian practice of suttee, and had been killed by Hindu extremists, I doubt we would even know about it, much less be asking people thousands of miles away in Hollywood to make statements condeming it.

    Like most of what’s in the papers, it doesn’t really matter.

  • jon

    I want to see the film.

    Why hasn’t anyone stepped up to broadcast it?

    The leftwing media, the rightwing media, the independent media, and the internet media aren’t exactly jumping on the opportunity to let me see it.

    Censorship with a gun and knife works better than any government.

    I won’t call them cowards. And I won’t let the Hollywood liberals be the only one who gets singled out for responses. I want responses from everywhere.

    And I want to see the film.

  • Pete_London

    jon

    LGF is linking to the film.

  • Pete_London

    Christopher Hitchens has a related article about the greater context of religious fanatacism and the left in general.

  • anti-smoker

    It sounds like you don’t really value freedom of speech, J. Or are you just pretending in order to appear sophisticated?

  • jon

    Good for LGF. I usually avoid their site (something about the comments makes me feel like I need a shower), but I really wanted to see that film. I’ve seen part one, and it’s worth it.

    I was amazed to not have any technical difficulties, too. Someone deserves a gold star.

  • GCooper

    And yet again our media betray us.

    The degree of discontent in the Netherlands (as far as one can discern from sources outside the UK) is considerable. Yet the response to this deeply worrying story from both the UK’s print and broadcast media has been predictably downplayed.

    The BBC’s News Online pages, for example, maximised ‘Moslem fears’ of a reaction from the Dutch to the brutal slaying a vocal protester against Islamic fundamentalism – pinned with a note fastened by a dagger driven into his heart, one hears. Even better, when pretending to portray ‘Dutch opinion’ it used a photograph of someone who was clearly of North African/Arabic extraction. Typically Dutch? In the wet dreams of a BBC picture editor, maybe.

    Something is happening in Holland which the media are scared of. Those scant reports that make it through the BBC’s PC filter suggest that the worm might finally be about to turn against radical Islam.

    How wonderfully ironic, if it were the ultra-liberal Dutch who became the first sensibly to react to this manic theocratic cuckoo.

  • jon

    Didn’t the Dutch already react to the theocratic cuckoo? Wasn’t the gay, leftist politician Pym Fortyn (my memory of Dutch names is not what it should be) murdered for speaking up against the intolerance of Islam?

    Of course, he was murdered by another leftist. But that shows the many dangers of speaking out.

    And the very important need to do so.

  • Matt Foster

    Wasn’t the gay, leftist politician Pym Fortyn (my memory of Dutch names is not what it should be) murdered for speaking up against the intolerance of Islam?

    I believe that Pym Fortuyn was a gay, right wing politician who was murdered for speaking up against the intolerance of Islam.

  • anonymous coward

    If Michael Moore had attacked Islam instead of Republicans, he could have looked forward to the same fate. So our movie community is hardly about to court such a fate by criticizing it.

    Salman Rushdie was under a high-level, much-publicized fatwah for blasphemy, which did not succeed (probably because he hid). But it didn’t take much effort at all to knock off the careless film-maker. Probably the Islamistas see this as progress.

  • Donna

    The outrage over Mr. Van Gogh’s murder is louder and the story of his murder is famous because he was famous (in Europe).
    The premise of his murder should be more alarming.
    Here’s an excellent article, a little scary and a bit long concerning the Van Gogh murder: http://www.spectator.org/dsp_article.asp?art_id=7365

  • Donna

    Concerning the response of the “artistic” community in Hollywood:

    I would guess that probably 75% of these people couldn’t find Chicago on a map much less Amsterdam and wouldn’t have a clue who Theo van Gogh is. I never heard of him until his murder but I’m a cretin and should be excused.

  • Assistant Village Idiot

    J, your comment would have more weight if gay-bashers and antivivisectionists were amassing armies, developing nuclear weapons, and killing 1-3000 bystanders at a time with regular frequency, and we had a reasonable expectation it might happen to many others in the coming year. The innocents slaughtered by the Mongols were each worth as much as a filmmaker, but we look at those deaths with little concern because of the severe reduction in the number of Mongols running loose and armed.

    As to the killers of abortion doctors, I belief most have turned out to be insane rather than extremist.

  • Sean

    The left is silent because they think, after a fashion, Van Gogh deserved it.

    Radical Islamists attack us when we disturb them. Under normal circumstances, they’re harmless.

    At least, that’s what leftists keep telling themselves in an attempt to feel safe again. If we just take the time to “understand” their situation, rather than criticize them, those Islamists will come to realize, eventually, how nice we are.

    Targeting Van Gogh, perversely, reinforces their belief system. “See, it’s only when you provoke them that they get violent”.

    They do not realize that first the Islamists go for the critics. Once there are no critics left, they will feel free to go after anyone else.

  • stoatman

    The Dutch are _not_ a tolerant people! I know, I live amongst them. This is why Pim Fontyn did so well (he’s probably going to win KRO’s Greatest Dutchman competition, which will be broadcast on 15th Nov – if you can read Dutch, see http://www.degrootstenederlander.nl for info). The “official” Dutch stereotype is as realistic as the official stories of what life behind the Iron Curtain was like.

    Stoatman
    /often reminded that he is a stomme buitenlander

  • Johnathan

    J, you seem to be very relaxed about this horrible event. But the context is all in these issues. It was the reason for his murder that ought to cause for concern. I find it depressing to have to point that out.

  • eoin

    The inability of the Cultural Marxists to defend Holland shows that theirs is a different agenda to what they claim. If the cultural Marxist was just a social libertarian, he would be defending Holland as it stands, the most socially libertarian State in the history of the world. Instead silence. All radicals become conservative when they achieve their aims, so the Netherlands should have conservative ex-leftists campaigning for Islamic integration, or against Islamic migration, were they *really* defenders of an existent Socially Libertarian State ( in effect, that describes Fortuyn).

    Clearly, however, the left is not demonstrating against radical Islam. What gives?

    It is Gramscian logic to support the minorities most likely to be dangerous to the West, so the cultural Marxist must by design support Islamic immigration into Holland. ( Of course, Gramsci wanted to weaken the West to replace it with Stalinism, now anything will do). To that extent, Hitchens is a naive fool, it seems he spent his life in a movement which he assumed was anti-Theocratic. Not at all. In it’s first form it attacked Western religiosity to weaken the West. It was however anti-Western, not anti-religious.

    Now it will support Islamic religiosity – to the extent of supporting Faith Schools ( Madeline Bunting in the Guardian), and laws against the criticism of religion ( Blunkett), and more. it is inevitable, in fact, that the left will become an Islamic Front. Cultural Marxists are happy to lose one oppressed group ( recently the proletariat) to gain more pro-active “minorities” – look how white workers in the US have become oppressors, rather than oppressed.

    In the Netherlands, the Left will be the political force that shelters Islam, as Islam grows who else would they vote for, or who would represent them? Then the cultural Marxists will accuse previous supporters of the Left of being “supremacist”, possibly including women’s rights movements, and homosexual activists ( well, we have already seen that). It wont matter as the minority that becomes it most loyal follower grows.

    When Islam is the majority religion in holland, it’s supporters will be voting Theocratic laws through the mechanism of organized Left-wing parties.

  • S. Weasel

    It all sucks, but this is nothing special.

    Jesus, j! His murderer pumped six shots into him as he rode by on his bike in broad daylight, but failed to kill him. While van Gogh begged for his life, the killer sawed through his throat, nearly decapitating him, then stuck a note on the knife and plunged it into his heart. The note promises screaming death by torture to, among other things, the Netherlands and America.

    Significantly, I haven’t heard anyone claim he was a lone nutter.

    Anytime someone breaks the ‘sticks and stones’ rule and decides to meet words with violence, I think it’s special. Certainly, whenever someone threatens…well, me…I think it’s really extra super special.

  • Brian

    eoin: Extremely well put.

    Everybody go back and read that post, then read it again.

    It is Gramscian logic to support the minorities most likely to be dangerous to the West

    It is Gramscian logic to support the minorities most likely to be dangerous to the West

    It is Gramscian logic to support the minorities most likely to be dangerous to the West

    Get it? Good.

  • Hmmm...

    Shocking and awful! The typical left-wing reaction is to say the murder and the counter-violence against Muslims is the fault of the one who was murdered – of van Gogh. Their typical way of putting it would be that he “provoked” all the violence (including his own murder). The same view was broadcast in reaction to Palestinian terrorism. A man called Sharon walked onto the temple mount/al-aqsa compound (but not into the mosque) stating that Jerusalem will remain undivided. Something countless others had said a million times before. For that matter, Israelis and tourists commonly walked up the temple mount.

    This could have been a tiny and forgotten item in the paper but the Palestinians began a massive terrorism campaign and explain “Sharon is responsible for everything (repeated suicide bombings, the entire war) because he ‘provoked’ it by going up there”. Needless to say, their violence would have flared up regardless, at some other ‘opportunity’.

    Had Islamic leaders repeatedly warned Dutch TV that “we’re not responsible for the murder that will be unleashed on you or on van-Gogh if you provoke us by airing his film” would that mean that the fault for van-Goghs’ murder and the ensuing counter-violence lies with van-Gogh and Dutch TV who “knew that Muslims are infuriated by the decision to broadcast the film” ?

    Needless to say, this type of terrorism against free speech would not have been restricted to van Gogh and this particular film. It would have been (and will be) another man and another film or newspaper column next month or next year. Should Dutch media not report on problematic issues (like ‘honour killings’ of Muslim women by their families, or any criticism about a face of Muslim culture)?

    People must be held accountable. The “Our feelings were hurt, we had to murder” excuses cannot be accepted!!! Isn’t this not yet clear???

    For many people, it’s not. If British and American film makers don’t talk about their shock at his murder and at the attack on free speech it’s because political correctness bids them to keep silent (that, and a non healthy dose of fear).

    The message sent by Arab/Muslim ultra-nationalist fanatics is deadly clear: Don’t say or do anything which offends us (everything offends us) otherwise, we’re not responsible for what we’ll do to you.

  • I think the reason this sort of thing invokes outcry amoungst creative types (and should do in all) is because this bloke was putting his life on the line. He knew he was risking his life but chose to make what he felt was necessary damn the consequences.

    His death and that of Pim Fortyn is message to all of us that extremist Islamists have no respect for free speech or different opinions. The killing of this man is just the extreme example of those who call anyone who disagrees with them a Nazi, racist or hatemongerer. The apologist for Islamists are empowering this lot of loons to do similar things. This is just the first of many such tragedies…one wonders what it will take for some people to wake up.

  • A_t

    It’s all very well ranting on about ‘lefty’ conspiracies, & looking clever & superior in front of everyone else, but what do you propose we do?

    We’re supposed to ‘wake up’ and what? What do we do once we’re awake?

    Personally, I’m very much aware that there’s a threat from extremist Islam, & that some of that threat is present in Western Europe, but fighting it is not such an obvious task.

    Sure, I’d like the police to identify & watch extremist groups & individuals as best they can, & tbh they are probably already doing so, but beyond that, how far do we go?

    Do we restrict civil liberties on the basis that it might save some lives? Do we celebrate those who are critical of Islam as courageous heroes, acknowledging the risk they’re taking, say to the extremists “taking him down isn’t enough; you’ll have to take all of us if you want to win”? What?

    I’m genuinely interested to know, because so many of you are clearly dissatisfied with the current state of affairs, yet you offer no alternatives that I can see, just condemnation & mutterings about sinister conspiracies.

  • Jamisia

    It is ironic that we, the Dutch, should react sensibly to this sort of thing? How can you be sure that there will be a sensible reaction? Last night the police in The Hague raided an apparent terrorist-house, but instead an handgrenade was thrown to the police! A islamic school was set on fire and yet the prime-minister calls for ‘dialogue’. Information – reports that terrorists, such as Mohammed B. (the murderer of mr Van Gogh), were being watched, was leaked to those terrorists! The minister of the home department (mr Remkes) may well be sacked for all this, although he is still squabbling with the minister for the justice department (mr Donner), for the latter’s apparent failure to implement measures that go as far as mr Remkes wants them to.
    Sensible response? Hahahaha! (laughter is the only thing left…)

  • Joel Català

    I see two main insane trends within the West,

    1) The complicity of the wicked (mainsteam media and pro-EU politicians).

    2) The silence of the lambs (disoriented, partially brainwashed population).

    Partially balanced by blogistas, some conservative politicians and the informed population.

  • S. Weasel

    We’re supposed to ‘wake up’ and what? What do we do once we’re awake?

    There are some fairly obvious measures. Immigrants who have not taken citizenship in their host country are there at the indulgence of that host country. It is unclear to me what rights they can claim, short of the most basic right not to be treated brutally. Radical imams have been operating inside the Netherlands openly calling for violence. Start by sending them home.

    Next would be tightening immigration policies.

    What proportion of the North African population in the Netherlands has taken Dutch citizenship? Anyone know? Because third would be making citizenship requirements stringent, if many of the disaffected and alienated have, in fact, taken citizenship.

    Immigrants who assimilate are good for the host country. Immigrants who don’t assimilate are not.

  • Pete_London

    A-t

    Melanie’s pointing out some alarming stuff. Some would also describe it as predictable. There is of course one sure fire route to alleviating ourselves of the Islamist threat already here in the west. It just happens to be quite illiberal.

    As the great Rolf Harris said:

    Can ya guess what it is yet?

  • Jacob

    A_t
    “Sure, I’d like the police to identify & watch extremist groups & individuals as best they can, & tbh they are probably already doing so”

    Well, to state the obvious – if the police is watching extremist groups it is doing a very poor job of it. It could, and should, and should be required to, do much more.

    The main problem seems to be with the multiculty mentality and policies of most people and politicians: “everybody is just nice and peaceful, leave them alone ! No problem there at all !”

    We must wake up to the fact that this is not so, and a dangerous situation is developing. It is inconcievable that, as reported, there are townships, or areas where police doesn’t dare enter and patrol. The police and secret services must infiltrate the mosques and the social clubs, and neighbourhoods, identify those who preach, or plan criminal acts, and take preventive action: arrest them, charge them with incitement, deport them if convenient.
    Maybe laws need to be adjuasted to make this action possible. Crimes inside the community, such as “honor” killings, etc. should also be severely prosecuted and punished.

    All this is obvious and trivial, but it isn’t done !

    I’m really at a loss to understand you fatalistic approach: “… but… what can we do ???”

  • A_t

    OK Pete_London, I can think of several sure-fire ways to get rid of all radical Islamists from any given European country. However, I find none of them acceptable. That’s why I’m asking.

    If you can think of a a scenario which is acceptable to you, no matter how un-PC, then have the courage to state it.

    SWeasel,
    “Immigrants who assimilate are good for the host country. Immigrants who don’t assimilate are not.”

    Hmm… but how do you measure assimilation? How do you decide who gets let in & who doesn’t. Again, these are practical &, to a degree, common-sense statements, but they don’t automatically point to some correct course of action. For instance, you could argue that the Chinese or Jamaicans in London for that matter, aren’t hugely assimilated; many mix primarily with their own kind, eat ‘their’ food, speak languages or dialects which are not understandable by native Brits, may have quite a different social & moral code in many ways, yet neither group is perceived as a threat to the fabric of the UK.

    I think ‘assimilation’ needs a clearer definition here.

  • Hmmmm...

    Just imagine if Monty Python wouldn’t have been able to laugh at religion – at the figures or at the institutions. Imagine if they’d have been murdered in this awful way. Imagine if Scorsese would have had a Christian fatwa on him. Imagine the effects on society. The culture we’d be living in.

    I don’t know when people will wake up. Obviously – it will be when things are mind shattering in the then present (rather than in the future).

    The unfortunate thing is that by that time, the cost might be a new (and very real) European fascism which will come to combat the Muslim/Arabic facism. Hardly something to look forward to…

  • A_t

    Jacob,

    The police and secret services must infiltrate the mosques and the social clubs, and neighbourhoods, identify those who preach, or plan criminal acts, and take preventive action: arrest them, charge them with incitement, deport them if convenient.

    Aaah, so simple. Yes, just inflitrate them. Why didn’t the police & secret services think of that before. Put it this way, if they’ve not been working on that for a number of years already, they’re even more foolish than I give them credit for.

    Maybe laws need to be adjuasted to make this action possible. Crimes inside the community, such as “honor” killings, etc. should also be severely prosecuted and punished.

    “honour” killings, otherwise known as “murders” are already punishable by the harshest penalties available in all Western countries, regardless which ‘community’ they take place in. New laws are not necessary; what you’re proposing is the right-wing equivalent to “hate crimes”; punishing certain crimes more severely because they reflect social attitudes you disapprove of.

    What’s really needed is some means to catch those who commit the crimes, & if you think that’s an non-trivial problem, I’m sure a number of police chiefs would love your assistance.

    Again, you propose nothing that’s not blatantly obvious, & what’s more nothing that isn’t probably already happening. Yet you & everyone else keeps kvetching on about how not enough is being done. So, do you want the police to publically announce their infiltration of extremist Islamic groups? Or do you believe they’re not doing doing (or trying to do) anythign along those lines at present?

    One assassination does not mean that the police & secret services aren’t taking the threat seriously, or that they’re not working against it, any more than a few murders mean that the police don’t try to prevent murders or arrest murderers.

  • S. Weasel

    I think ‘assimilation’ needs a clearer definition here.

    No, it doesn’t. You’re looking at the wrong end of the process. All Western nations used to have very strict guidelines for allowing immigrants into their countries. These included national quotas, sponsorship, employment requirements, language requirements. Immigration policy was designed to benefit the host country, which is how all national policies should be.

    While we still developed Chinatowns and Italian or Irish or Portuguese neighborhoods, all of the incomers (to the US, at any rate) assimilated to the extent that they found a productive niche in society. Believe me, the Chinese are not trying to keep you out of Chinatown, they are trying to draw you in.

  • GCooper

    A_t writes:

    “If you can think of a a scenario which is acceptable to you, no matter how un-PC, then have the courage to state it.”

    Well if it’ll give you some sort of BBC/Guardian glow to hear such an outrageously Right wing suggestion made in the open air, here goes.

    Round the radicals up and deport them. Having done that, clamp down on illegal immigration and enforce deportation without appeal for all illegal immigrants who slip through the net. Vet all new applications for immigration through a fine-mesh security filter.

    You can get back to your hand-wringing now.

  • Hmmm...

    Joel Català, that was very astute!

    Here is how I see it and I’d like to hear your own opinions.

    As to what can be done? Precious little (in a way) and yet quite a lot! Holland has just begun. As I understand it, they’ll now be deporting those immigrants with dual citizenships who make Jihad-like calls.

    In fact, all calls to Jihad should be forbidden and considered incitement to murder. All calls of “death to [name of person/country/people/race]” should be treated as serious incitements to murder, especially as they come from the same sources – and a call of “death to…” one group of civilians/country legitimises calls of “death to…” other entities.

    When it comes to justifying acts of terrorism (such as suicide bombings) – even when these are ‘limited’ to a specific country/race/entity – even when the speaker explains ‘it’s not terrorism when it’s applied to civilians who belong to a/b/c’ – when it comes to that, we have a bigger problem. The same goes for justifying van-Gogh’s murder – something which many people did.

    If we want to tackle the overwhelming problem of militant Islam then such sentences cannot be tolerated.
    However, the basic approach for this essentially should NOT be through laws but through having society in general refuse to tolerate such things! Just as nobody would tolerate having a group speak on televison explaining that randomly killing black people is desirable or justified.

    If the blanket immunity from criticism were to be entirely lifted from Arabic/Muslim society then everything might still change. Then moderate Arab/Muslim society might take in the understanding that this cannot go on! They might dare to voice far sharper condemnation of it. They might be that much less keen to send their children to such schools/mosques. And, such preachers do need to be arrested.

    This is what “wake up” signifies!!!!! Ironically, this is what needs to be done by those who are the least willing to do it. This is the wake-up call to the leftwing supposedly liberal/tolerant media to condemn such murderous calls and to refuse to glorify/legitimise intolerance and terrorism.

    They’re unlikely to wake up even if the murders were to be loud enough to shatter their ear drums. Their tolerance and acceptance of this type of murder and intolerance is almost a matter of religious faith…

  • A_t

    :) no hand-wringing required, GCooper, & tbh, if the radicals are foreign nationals I entirely agree. I also agree that we should be more careful about who we let in to the country, although I’d be surprised if the vetting hadn’t got somewhat beefed up since 9/11 anyway.

    But what would you do with British-born radicals though, or radicals who have British nationality (eg Richard Reid the infamous & inept ‘shoe bomber’)? You can’t deport them back to ‘where they came from’ because that’s here… so what do we do?

    I’m honestly not asking this so that I can patronise you on how un-PC your views are; I’m just sick of the amount of “Gah! it’s not right!” bitching that goes on in these comment sections, usually without any accompanying improvements proposed.

    (oh, & btw, both the Guardian & the BBC, have been highly annoying recently, with particular ire reserved for the BBC, as at least the Guardian is honest about being a partisan left-wing publication. The Beeb’s election coverage in particular was abominable, and their coverage of the Fallujah assault has been rubbish too. Although I don’t hate them, as many do round here, I certainly don’t view them as any kind of guide)

  • GCooper

    A_t asks:

    “But what would you do with British-born radicals though, or radicals who have British nationality (eg Richard Reid the infamous & inept ‘shoe bomber’)? You can’t deport them back to ‘where they came from’ because that’s here… so what do we do?”

    Put them in prison. Forever.

    It’s not that hard to work out, surely?

  • A_t

    GCooper wrote,

    Put them in prison. Forever.

    It’s not that hard to work out, surely?

    No, it’s true… from the moment you’re certain of a religiously/ideologically inspired intent to mass murder, I have no problem with that. The problem comes with divining that intent prior to the individual taking action. That’s hard, & if we’re interested in living in a country where the term ‘civil liberties’ means anything, that type of pre-crime punishment had better have some seriously robust safeguards around it, otherwise it becomes a license for the government to imprison whoever they don’t like at the time on the basis of scant & easily fabricated evidence.

  • Davie Boy

    Surely the burden of proof needs to be re-evaluated and lessened where the government can prove intention but not action. Does a democracy protect the rights of the individual or the many?

  • GCooper

    A_t writes:

    “….that type of pre-crime punishment had better have some seriously robust safeguards around it, otherwise it becomes a license for the government to imprison whoever they don’t like at the time on the basis of scant & easily fabricated evidence.”

    It doesn’t have to be ‘pre-crime’. We have had laws regarding conspiracy and sedition for many years. And yes, of course we need a robust criminal law system to safeguard our liberties. Which is one of the best reasons for hating this present government, for all that is has done to erode them.

  • A_t

    Which is one of the best reasons for hating this present government, for all that is has done to erode them

    Agreed, wholeheartedly.

  • Steve LaBonne

    Here in the good ole U.S. of Jesusland us cowboy redneck fascists are so degenerate that we will even revoke the citizenship of immigrant hatemongers who managed to become naturalized by concealing their true colors. Quel simplisme! The sophisticated Europeans will naturally want to take care not to follow our example.

  • Steve LaBonne

    Sorry, don’t know why the link didn’t work: http://www.newsnet5.com/news/3906303/detail.html

  • limberwulf

    A_T,
    What I see most of on this particular comment roll is calls for consistency. Vocal outcry, criticism, social stigma, and downright demonizing of bigotry an dintolerance are supposed to be the weapon of the left, but it seems to be employed only against certain groups, particularly right-wing and christian groups. The call to action is to do exactly what they have been doing, but against a different target.

    The market and society can often do a great deal more than any law, including affecting the actions of illegal immigrants. I personally am not a fan of tightened borders and immigration. I dont want an iron curtain in either direction.

    The fix is to stop having individuals cower in fear to violent people. The best way to do this is to move away from the victim mentality, and to bolster the rights of the individual to defend themselves. If there was not such a culture of “just do what the bad guy says and no one will get hurt, cause your life is more important than anything”, then I rather doubt terrorists could have hi-jacked a plane with box knives. I gaurantee it would never happen again, because people have realized that cooperation and appeasement does not work. This is one of the reasons people voted Bush back in, they like his approach. They like it because if the passengers on those planes had the same mentality, a great tragedy may well have been avoided, and dealing with an enemy of that type requires that sort of decisive action.

    We are too risk averse, too scared of everything. The best thing we can do is to speak out and not worry about the social consequences, turn those consequences on the extremists. And arm ourselves, so that the extremist knows that there is a chance he will not be able to even accomplish his physcal goal of damage, but more importantly, the fearlessness of society stops him from ever accomplishing his goal of power through fear.

    You want to do something? Resist your fear.

  • Various silly conspiracy theories aside, I note that Hollywood types are notorious for barely realizing that the rest of the world exists at all, and that there was a certain fairly important election campaign going on which almost everyone in the US was more concerned with.

    I have seen some posts on this from some of your other enemies, such as this one: http://www.reason.com/hitandrun/2004/11/holland_on_edge.shtml

  • Six FootPole

    Regarding the “silence”: I’ve read about this on every liberal blog and in every mainstream news source. What silence? I think your blanket accusations of collusion are stupid.

  • Jacob

    A_t,
    “otherwise it becomes a license for the government to imprison whoever they don’t like at the time on the basis of scant & easily fabricated evidence.”

    On principle you are right, but it is indeed a very long time since a government did “imprison whoever they don’t like” (at least in the Anglosphere). That isn’t the problem we need to be afraid of now. The acute problem is Islamist fanaticism and violence.

    When crime, of whatever type, surges – it is a sure sign that more needs to be done to combat it. Your assumption that the police is already doing all it can is baseless, just an assumption, not a fact. More needs to be done, more of the obvious actions, more – until the crime level declines. An elevated crime level is itself a proof that enforcement is lacking.

    For example: honor killings or murders are already illegal, no doubt about it. The same goes for threats of murder, and incitement. The doubt is about how vigorously the police investigates and prosecutes such cases; what percentage of cases are solved, and what percentage remain unsolved. Saying that it is illegal and prosecutable does not prove that it is indeed prosecuted.

    It seems to me that what is hindering is a conviction among the ruling classes, caused by leftie ideology,
    that enforcement is somehow un-PC.

  • Hmmm...

    World domination seems too insane to be taken seriously. At the same time, it’s clear that even pin-point murderous attacks on public figures who ‘offend’ Arab/Muslim society- do have the accumulative effect and consequence of eventual world domination. It appears that whoever murdered Van Gogh actually understands that.

    The following quote is from the letter which had been stabbed into his body! If this is genuine, it puts the lie to the argument that ‘they’ only react when offended, or ‘only’ hate America/Israel/Russia/India/…

    “The document, attached to the body of filmmaker Theo van Gogh, was titled “An Open Letter to [Aayan] Hirsi Ali,” referring to a Somali-born member of
    parliament. She had scripted Mr. van Gogh’s latest film, “Submission,” which criticized the treatment of women under Islam…
    “Death, Ms. Hirsi Ali, is the common theme of all that exists. You and the rest of the cosmos cannot escape this truth,” the letter said.
    “There will come a day when one soul cannot help another soul. A day that goes paired with terrible tortures, … when the unjust will press horrible
    screams from their lungs.
    “Screams, Ms. Hirsi Ali, that will cause chills to run down a person’s back, and make the hairs on their heads stand straight up. People will be drunk
    with fear, while they are not drunken. Fear will fill the air on the Great Day,” the letter said.
    “I know definitely that you, Oh America, will go down. I know definitely that you, Oh Europe, will go down. I know definitely that you, Oh Netherlands, will go down. I know definitely that you, Oh Hirsi Ali, will go down,” it
    said.

  • The Wobbly Guy

    They can’t take over the world, but they can make life very nasty for the next few decades.

    It took a hundred years and more for Chritianity to even begin to understand the concept of tolerance, and the price was paid with a lot of lives.

    I doubt Islam’s ability to do so, though there is hope. Just two days back, I and two Muslim friends, one male, one female, were playing scrabble on an all-nighter, and they had no problems accepting gay rights and alcohol, and more importantly, the right of others to their own beliefs. That’s the attitude we need to try to spread to the rest of the Islamic world. But then, Singapore is very small. :(

    TWG

  • Hmmm...

    I know it sounds odd, but its more a matter of culture than of religion per se. It’s more a matter of a regional culture. But these days, things have a way of spreading fast.
    Bosnian Muslims or Turks are prime examples.
    In particular, in Bosnia, they’re Western by our standards. Their entire way of life, their entire contemporary culture – including religious culture – is very different from that which exists in Egypt/Saudi Arabia/Palestine/Syria and in (I guess some parts of) Pakistan, and some countries in far east Asia.

    The only ones who can REALLY bring fundamentalist extremist fascistic Islam down, are the Muslims who abhor this type of murderous fanatic behaviour. If they don’t enlist, it might be impossible. However, (and in part, by their very nature) they’re less likely to enlist in a religious war – even fighting for their beliefs. They’d like (and this is understandable) to just live their lives freely.

  • I was discussing this with someone last evening, someone who has lived rather a lot of places in the world, ie not at al “little Englander.”

    One does wonder what has to happen (or rather how many have to be killed) for the great British public to wake up to the fact that they are in danger of being attacked by these lunatics. So far the British security services are doing a decent job at preventing such attacks but can they stop them forever? I rather doubt it.

    Just because people would like it all to go away doesn’t mean it will happen.

    Van Goth’s death was yet another warning about what we are up against…

  • Verity

    Andrew – The great British public is already awake. As is the great Dutch public and the great French public and the great Spanish public. Do you imagine for one minute that the French are complicit in their beloved national landscape being reworked to include their millions of unwelcome Islamics with their foul habits and creepy dress sense?

    This is the major reason the governments, like Blair and his fellow Gramscians over there on the Continong, have to work so hard to get the people to shut up with threats of “racism” and “incitement of religious hatred”.

    The governments have an agenda – starting over 30 years ago with secret deals between the fledgling EU and the Arab League – and that is, bizarrely enough, the destruction of European civilisation. The people in Europe are well awake, but every time someone tries to voice opposition to the agenda, their government hits them over the head with the two-by-four of “racism”, which has been crafted in all European especially for the purpose of silencing the electorates.

  • Six Foot Pole

    How does “Hollywood” make its opinions known on such subjects? Have you read the Hollywood Reporter or Variety?

    I’d be careful about how to interpret “silence”; just because Roger Simon hasn’t heard it doesn’t mean that nothing’s been said. Judging from Simon’s blog, he has a habit of ignoring reasonable liberal opinions and accentuating fringe insanity in order to support the conservative agenda.

    In fact, alleging “silence” on some issues seems to be Simon’s standard practice. It’s a cheap set-up. He phrases a situation to flatter the Right and then laughably calls up a very silly resource from the Left or studiously ignores the obvious.

    His link in this entry to the notoriously inarticulate Streisand is a perfect example of how silly Simon is. His crowing about “bias” at the New York Times is really beyond the pale. Please. Let’s go for some more credible sources.

    The whole basis of this entry is the fabricated conservative paranoia about the “liberal media”. Cleverly buried in rhetoric!

  • Johnathan Pearce

    Six Foot Pole, you are talking through your hat. Roger Simon who is a lifelong screenwriter who knows Hollywood like the back of his hand and knows the film business intimately. When he talks about the silence of Hollywood over the van Gogh business, I believe him. Most of your comment is nothing more than abuse of Mr Simon. He has of course taken the hawkish line over the WoT, which perhaps explains SFP’s animosity.

    In any event, there has certainly been a fair amount of commentary about the Dutch situation in the blogs and parts of the media, but I have yet to see a report of any major film-maker speaking out about this. If Six Foot Pole knows better, perhaps he/she should cite some actual examples.