We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Deleted by the Guardian… spotting the pattern

I found this interesting:

Harun Khan said many young British-born Muslims felt pushed to the fringes of society and that the latest government crackdown could nudge them further into the grasp of radical clerics, instead of drawing them back into mainstream society.

If they want to be in mainstream society in the UK, then their young males need to go down the pub and their young females need to stop wearing a head scarf. But this was my reply:

So if I understand what Harun Khan is saying, it is that monitoring members of the Muslim community for fear of Islamic extremism will cause radicalisation, so the thing to do is to leave it to the imams and community leaders to ensure everything is hunky dory. So a bit like Rotherham then?

And the Guardian’s reply was:

This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our community standards. Replies may also be deleted. For more detail see our FAQs.

Now as I respect private property, unlike the some I could mention, I accept that as the comment was posted on the Guardian’s site, it is up to them what they allow to be published… so no nonsensical bleating about ‘censorship’ please… their house, their rules. I certainly never apologise for deleting comments I think are inappropriate on Samizdata, and neither should the Guardian.

But I do find it interesting that what I think was a pretty innocuous remark gets axed the moment it touches on this particular topic. I sense that a thread is being pulled on the whole morally relativistic carpet that has been draped over the large grunting shitting snuffling pig in the middle of the room, and there is mounting alarm in ‘certain circles’ as they see this carpet coming unravelled. So to me the issue is not “Oh noez! My comment has been cruelly deleted!” but rather “it is interesting to see this particular pattern show where the intolerable sensitivities are”. If that is the weak point, that is where to keep thrusting the dagger.

But then as I said last time I got a comment deleted, that was the sort of mainstream media world view that pushed me into setting up Samizdata in 2001 in the aftermath of 9/11.

And so I introduce a new comment category today: Deleted by the Guardian

26 comments to Deleted by the Guardian… spotting the pattern

  • Mr Ed

    Now is there a Guardian reverse ‘Spambot’ at work? Did it find the words “Rotherham” and “Muslim” and go ‘delete’?

    What if you edited it from:

    So if I understand what Harun Khan is saying, it is that monitoring members of the Muslim community for fear of Islamic extremism will cause radicalisation, so the thing to do is to leave it to the imams and community leaders to ensure everything is hunky dory. So a bit like Rotherham then?


    So if I understand what Harun Khan is saying, it is that monitoring members of the third Great Abrahamic Faith community for fear of 3rd Abrahamic Faith extremism will cause radicalisation, so the thing to do is to leave it to their faith leaders and community leaders to ensure everything is hunky dory. So a bit like that town in South Yorkshire that isn’t Sheffield, Barnsley or Doncaster recently in the news with a former MP convicted of expenses fraud then?

    would it still be deleted?

  • Post it and lets see Ed. Seriously 😀

  • Mr Ed

    I don’t have an ID at the Guardian.

  • As well as the Editor the readers will also be reporting what ‘offends them’ -so probably stone age techno- informants!

  • Me at Home

    consider it done.
    under the name ‘sammyzee’ @ 13.55

  • Mr Ed

    Thank you Me at Home. I have to say that I hovered over the ‘report’ button but desisted.

  • One hour and it is still there 😛

  • Me at Home

    i wonder if maybe, after a while, with nearly all the comments being ‘islamophobic’, the censors just give up the ghost?
    just too many dissident opinions to hunt down!

  • Possibly, as there are waaaaaaay harsher comments up there now than my one that they deleted. Or maybe I am on their shitlist 🙂

  • Me at Home

    the swamping of the comment thread seems in keeping with the results of that BBC poll yesterday (Sunday Morning Live)…
    ie. 95% voters came to the conclusion that ‘multiculturalism was not working’


  • lucklucky

    Welcome to new category. I am afraid you’ll have much work.

  • Mr Ed

    The comment below on the Guardian piece has been reported:

    01 September 2014 1:54pm

    The problems are NOT with muslims, but with Islam or its interpretation.
    As I Christian I object to the tarnishing of our faith by neo conservatives in the USA but I don’t seek to blow them up.
    Leading Islamic Clerics really NEED to address these issues…fast.
    I wish Muslims would not take things so literally. I mean take our Bible its not complete…. a significant amount of stuff on Jesus was left out.
    Bear in mind we have ‘Christains’ like IDS causing real suffering to other christains for no other reason they are poor and need benefits to survive.
    Though in comparison with Islam its mild.
    Neo conservatives in all faiths are the ones causing the problems but Islam seems to have a deeper one.

    The report is:

    The comment offensively compares Islam, a religion of peace with the giving of alms to the Tory austerity and cuts to welfare agenda. The writer may mean Islamism, but does not say so.

    This may give us some calibration on the sensitivity of the moderation.

  • Rob

    95% may think multiculturalism isn’t working but (1) it’s a bit late now and (2) the 5% who disagree are In Charge.

  • Natalie Solent (Essex)

    The Guardian mods are very inconsistent. I have now retired from commenting there, mostly because it is the worst thief of time imaginable (“Someone is wrong on the internet”), but partly because of some very odd deletions.

    One I remember with particular irritation was on a Comment is Free piece about climate change. The writer’s first paragraph said something about climate change being a catastrophe that is almost upon us. I was either the first or the second person to comment. The entirety of my comment consisted of the words “I disagree with this.” It got a lot of recommends before bein deleted, without so much as a “This comment was removed” to remember it by.

  • PersonFromPorlock

    Natalie, obviously you were mistaken when you thought you disagreed, and the Guardian’s mods caught you on it. You should be thanking them for saving you the embarrassment. ;^p

  • Fred Z

    “maybe I am on their shitlist”

    I seem always to be on their shitlist, slipping in and out of “pre-moderation” and even outright banning under several different identities. Puts me to the trouble of getting a new IP and deleting all their cookies, then re-registering.

    Like you, I have no idea what those lunatic lefties find in breach of their nebulous community standards.

    Best event ever was when they banned me and deleted all of my comments, a few dozen made over several months, even the ones not possibly controversial. They then left a note on my activity page to the effect that I had never posted. Lying shites as well.

    Since then I keep a screen shot of most of my comments.

    I also have posted nonsense comments where the first capital of every sentence spelled out silly stuff like “FUCK YOU GUARDIAN COMMIES”. They do not catch it, but it’s more work that it’s worth.

  • AndrewZ

    In the 1970s the establishment remained committed to the “post-war consensus” on economic issues even as public opinion was steadily turning against it. Change was a long time in coming but then happened very suddenly.

    It happened that way because politicians tend to be very risk-averse when it comes to expressing potentially controversial opinions. They know that taking a strong position on anything could cost them more votes than it gains. So they stay close to whatever they think is the political centre because it’s the safest place to be. Every so often they discover that public opinion has moved on and left them behind, and there is a mad rush to claim a place around the new safe spot.

    We’re now going through a similar process on social issues. The establishment remains committed to a “post-modern consensus” on multiculturalism, welfare, etc. that has caused enormous problems and a great deal of suffering. Public opinion is rapidly changing and the political herd is getting nervous. How long until the stampede?

  • How long until the stampede?

    That rather depends on how Nigel Farage does. if he does well, then the stampede is imminent. If not, then business as usual.

  • lucklucky

    Well i don’t think the stampede can occur unless the numbers are big and consistent for years. The power that state bureaucracy has is much bigger than an elected Government. Think Sir Humphrey power multiplied by several times, i guess an episode of Yes Prime Minister today would include a veiled thread to PM if his home green regulations are being respected and a sensitivity class to anything that Bernard would say outside the bubble.

  • Nick (Natural Genius) Gray

    In other print media, the news is better! The Economist nagazine actually thinks that businesses should not be treated as criminals, guilty unti proven innocent, in America! Who’d have thinked it?
    Congratulations on your second ‘Del’, Perry!!! Will you put them on the mantelpiece for visitors to admire?

  • Will you put them on the mantelpiece for visitors to admire?

    Wot??? You think I’m going to let you cunts into my house to see my mantelpiece? 😛

  • Nick (Natural Genius) Gray

    Perry, get your Genders right! I’m a dick!

  • Paul Marks

    Well the Guardian people do not believe in the vital importance of private property rights – indeed their whole philosophical argument is that socialism is compatible with “civil liberties” and so on. By their action (deleting the comment) they have proved that socialism (i.e. the control of everything by Guardian types) is not compatible with the “freedom of speech” and “intellectual diversity” they claim to favour.

    As for Islam in Britain – according to Innes Bowen (“Who Runs Our Mosques” – Spectator magazine June 14th, 2014) 2 (two) of the 1,700 mosques in Britain follow “modernist interpretations of Islam”.

    So are we talking about the two modernist mosques – or are we talking about the rest of the 1700 mosques?

    As for specific groups…..

    Six percent of mosques are run by the Saudi backed Wahhabis (Salafis) -“only six percent”.

    Yes indeed – because 45% of mosques are run by the Deobandi – a movement (originally created in British India to fight the Raj) who teach (among other things) that one should be outwardly polite to infidels (in order to put them off their guard), but never really be their friends.

    Other movements running mosques are rather less open to investigation.

    However, do not worry…..

    Remember two of the 1700 mosques teach modernist interpretations of the Koran.

    Or they say they do…..

  • Allen Farrington

    My only ever deleted comment from the Guardian was on an article musing over how we should respond to the Delhi rapes by all being more leftist, and read as follows:

    “I am opposed to violence against people of any or no gender by anti-women corporatist racist colonialist patriarchal guns.


    which raises the intriguing philosophical question of whether one can be offended by something that has absolutely no meaning.

  • Laird

    Allen, when the concept of “offense” itself no longer has meaning, but has become yet another political gambit, I would say that the answer to your philosophical question is clearly “yes”.