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]

Samizdata quote of the day

A week ago, when 129 people in Paris were massacred as they went joyfully about their Friday nights, there were instant predictions of fury and instability. The cut-off commentariat in particular was worried that ‘ordinary people’ might turn Islamophobic. Hatred will spread ‘thick and fast’, said Scotland’s minister for Europe. Others fretted that there would be displays of jingoism, demands for revenge. Don’t agitate for a ‘clash of civilisations’, observers warned. One expert on international affairs even told us not to get angry, because ‘ISIS counts on anger… to advance its cause’. This elite panic about post-Paris rage spoke volumes about the anti-public mindset of Europe’s opinion-formers, who view us as volatile, easily turned from civilised creatures into warmongers.

In the event, though, in the seven days since the massacres, something even worse than all that happened: nothing. There’s been no fury. No clamour for a fightback, whether of the militaristic or intellectual variety.

Brendan O’Neill

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36 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • David Moore

    The west simply doesn’t seem to have the moral courage that is need to deal with this. It really is an abused spouse in denial.

  • Martha

    Brendan’s response is too extreme (“elites”, “fury”, etc) and most can be safely discarded.

  • gongcult

    No outrage. No feelings of dread about our civilization. Just the sadness over those killed and wounded. What the hell is going on ? This should be an impetus in the fight for liberty. Have we given up already ?

  • JDN

    Perhaps I missed it, but has ISIS ever stated that they are counting on victims’ anger? It appears obvious that what ISIS wants is for everyone else to lay down and die, to surrender, to submit. Seems to me they’re getting a lot of what they want.

  • RRS

    Don’t get too wrapped up in the dialogues of the wordsmiths.

  • I’m with gongcult here. Where is the anger? Yesterday before the Liverpool v Man City match there was a minute’s silence for “the tragic events in Paris” which “took the lives of 129 people”. Tragic events? These murders are being dressed up as an earthquake. There is nothing tragic about a massacre, and I’m getting totally fucked off with these minutes silences and black armbands as if these folk had died in a tsunami. If we want to mourn the dead, let’s do so my making sure their numbers aren’t added to.

    Since Charlie Hebdo I’ve been looking on with a morbid fascination as Western populations get assaulted and humiliated by foreigners who wish us all dead, and react with hand-wringing and, in the manner of a battered wife, forgiveness from the perpetrators. I’m rapidly reaching the conclusion that nothing short of a nuclear blast in a major city will be enough to shake the West out of this malaise.

  • Mr Ed

    I am fairly certain that the silent majority are all for turning those parts of Syria and Iraq under IS control into glass.

    Meanwhile the attacks have caused the Archbishop of Canterbury to doubt the presence of God. Funny, as I never thought that he believed in God, well, the Christian God at any rate.

  • Patrick Crozier

    Perhaps it is because there is very little the West can unite around apart from the shock and outrage.

    Conquer the Middle East? Tried it (twice), didn’t work.

    Persecute domestic Muslims? We are not barbarians.

    Dismantle the welfare state? Politically impossible.

    Border controls? We don’t have the stomach.

    Internment? Goes against our liberal principles.

    Arming citizens? Hey, it’s taken us this long to get the guns out of their hands. And, anyway, it doesn’t stop bombs.

    Invoke treason laws (if they still exist)? Goes against the principle of freedom of speech. And, anyway, if anyone was jailed under them you’d never hear the end of it.

    But governments have to be seen to be doing something. So, they persecute those who won’t or can’t fight back: the ordinary, decent citizen. So, we get more security, more surveillance and (coming soon) blasphemy laws.

  • Perhaps it is because there is very little the West can unite around apart from the shock and outrage.

    I wouldn’t mind an admission that we can’t do much, but our leaders trip over themselves to deny the actual problem is Islamic terrorism. Let’s start by recognizing the problem and calling Islamic Terrorism Islamic Terrorism and not providing state-funded platforms for those whose profession is to bullshit us that Islamic Terrorism is not Islamic. Let’s start with that, and we’ll take it from there.

  • Mr Black

    The problem is, western civilization has become so soft we now refuse to fight a war in which anyone gets hurt. Bombing a school to take out a command post is entirely proper, but the actual reaction would be horror and disgust and a demand that it all stop. How can we ever win with moral cowards such as these controlling public opinion?

  • Patrick Crozier

    Hmm. How did we get on with Republican Terrorism? IIRC, HMG didn’t shy away from calling it such. But at the same time it liked to claim it was all the result of discrimination. Hmm. Dunno. Mind you can’t be a bad thing to call a thing what it is.

  • Yes, the IRA is a good example. Whatever the ordinary, moderate Irish said or thought about the IRA, we didn’t get them putting adverts in The Guardian saying “This has nothing to do with the Irish, the Irish are by definition nice people and so these bombings cannot be the work of Irish”.

  • tomsmith

    Dismantle the welfare state? Politically impossible.

    Border controls? We don’t have the stomach.

    Internment? Goes against our liberal principles.

    These are things that will actually help. But as you say, they are probably politically impossible. I think we are done now in Europe. I don’t see a way back from the trap we have set for ourselves. We are incapable of recognising the threat. We don’t see that Muslims perceive welfare as tribute, that all honest Muslims want a caliphate, that they will destroy us if we let them. It is impossible

  • PersonFromPorlock

    Maybe the way to put things into perspective is to start a movement to absolve fascism of any responsibility for WW2, on the grounds that that was the responsibility of extremists who just happened to be fascists.

    But the twits would probably join the movement.

  • Slartibartfarst

    I recall that the issue of the Koranic mandate of Islamic supremacy was tediously discussed at interminable length in earlier threads/discussions on this blog, with the “minds of the Samizdats” being challenged but apparently unable to come up with anything more imaginative than to kill all Muslims if they presented a threat, or something –

    “developing the social individualist meta-context for the future”

    – my arse.
    .
    To speak of killing, attacking Muslims, or to slander the people of Islam, is to attack or slander the prophet of Islam, and the Koran. This is forbidden.
    .
    All the evidence would seem to consistently indicate that the perfect Islamic religio-political ideology has sustained itself, relatively unchanged, for 1400 years and has a coherence and strength of adherence such that it would seem to be unlikely to be held back for very long by more recently-invented secular religio-political ideologies.
    .
    The Western religio-political ideology of democracy is a mewling infant by comparison, and (judging by the non-response to the Bataclan massacres), is weak and its priests unable to comprehend what to do, being hamstrung by their own sick ideologies not to respond in any direct and targeted manner that might be successful in eradicating the obvious pernicious effects (to them) of Islam within their democratic societies and territories.
    This is simply weakness. The Kaffir would seem to be paralysed by fear and indecision (as Allah had foretold), ensnared by their own godlessness.
    .
    The first step forward to lasting peace could arguably be for the West to stop bombing Islamic nations and respect and embrace Islam, and Islam would embrace them. As POTUS Obama put it in his speech to the General Assembly of the United Nations in New York in Sept. 2012:

    “The future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam”.

    I suspect he knew full well how true that was.

  • Derek Buxton

    “Embrace Islam” and get your head removed from your shoulders. We are weak, we ran down our forces just because some dozy politician or jobsworth thought it would save a few bob. Now we cannot fight because none of the political class have any principles. Their job is to protect us at all costs but not class us as the enemy as is happening.

  • Mr Ed

    Well there is a potentially serious situation in Brussels at the moment, let us hope that all ends safely very soon. However, if the worst happened, and the EU were attacked, you can be fairly certain that the responsibility would be claimed by IS, but the blame would be put by the PTB and media on Nij Al-Faraj and perceived cohorts.

  • Ellen

    Slartibartfast —

    The first step forward to lasting peace could arguably be for the West to stop bombing Islamic nations and respect and embrace Islam, and Islam would embrace them.

    Sheer bull. The death toll among Muslims, killed by Muslims of another flavor, far exceeds anything they’ve done to the West.

  • Slartibartfarst

    @Ellen:

    Sheer bull. The death toll among Muslims, killed by Muslims of another flavor, far exceeds anything they’ve done to the West.

    Really? Do you have the comparative kill-rates from history to back that statement up? If not, then it’s probably not a very good counter-argument, since you would be unable to substantiate the statement made.
    That doesn’t necessarily mean to say that you don’t sincerely believe the statement to be true, just that you can’t prove it to be true.

  • Slartibartfarst

    @Derek Buxton:

    “Embrace Islam” and get your head removed from your shoulders.

    No, you seem to have that quite the wrong way around. Your head remains on your shoulders if you embrace and submit to Allah in Islam. That’s what it means – “submit”.
    Islam protects its own far more fiercely than the weak Western nations seem able or willing to protect their citizens (QED – 9/11 and subsequent attacks, all the way up to the realisation of the long-term stated objective to attack Bataclan).

  • Ellen

    No comparative kill-rates, I’m afraid; I’d have to go back to primary sources, because secondary and tertiary sources are biased. Would you trust any count provided by the New York Times or the Grauniad, let alone government statisticians?

    When we have things like the Iran/Iraq war – with confused motives both from nationalism and the Sunni/Shiite split – it’s definitely Muslim-on-Muslim. I doubt there are that many Christians in the local markets Al Quaeda, Boko Haram, the Taliban, and others shoot up and blow up. The girls Boko Haram is selling and/or raping also seem to be insufficiently pure Muslims by their definitions.

    In short, neither of us can provide solid numbers. Both of us can probably provide numerous anecdotes. And whatever the balance of slaughter may be, the world news shows that being a Muslim among Muslims is not a serene and safe thing. Even if I converted, I’d probably be a heretic by a lot of definitions. As would you, and most of the rest of the population of the world. Heretics either cower and hide, or die.

  • Slartibartfarst

    @Ellen:

    In short, neither of us can provide solid numbers. Both of us can probably provide numerous anecdotes.

    Please don’t lump me in with your inability to substantiate your statements.
    .
    I try to avoid providing anecdotal “evidence” of things in rational discussion, and I could be wrong, of course, but I do not recall making any statements that required substantiation, but I can assure you that if I did make any such statements, then I would generally avoid making them without substantiation.
    .
    However, I was intrigued to see whether you could back up what you said with the facts, because I had never seen that data, though I have long suspected that, if we had such statistics, then we might well find that the death toll amongst Muslims, killed by Muslims of another faction/flavor – simply because they were the wrong ideological flavour, as it were – could indeed be very significant. That could perhaps give the lie to the supposition that all Islamic people could/would “live in peace”, even if there were a real Caliphate. I think recorded history tends to show such a peaceful state as remaining unrealised – an impossibility – so far.
    For example, the Baha’i faith seems to be a pretty harmless sect of Islam and at least respects all other religions – even down to usefully collecting and cataloguing those religions’ texts – which is all blasphemy to the orthodox Wahabists (the mainly Saudi-promulgated sect whose religio-political ideology seems to be the root cause of so much “necessary” death worldwide).
    .
    It would seem to be impossible for orthodox Muslims to co-exist with unorthodox Muslims, simply because the Koran directs them as to what to do with such determined blasphemers and apostates (i.e., kill them). Allah doesn’t mess about or equivocate in such matters.
    .
    Unfortunately, the orthodox/purist form of Islam is the one behind all these Islamic terrorist killings, and it is an incredibly clever, strong and self-sustaining religio-political ideology, presumably engineered and maintained such that it provides maximum power/control over the Muslim population.
    Even if they wanted to, the majority of Muslims are likely to be too afraid to break solidarity and come out and decry the murderous or horrific actions of other Muslims – of whatever flavour – since that could be taken as apostasy, or criticism of Islam, both of which may be punishable by death.
    Fear is thus the Araldite-like (epoxy resin) glue that so successfully binds the Muslims to their faith.
    .
    Thus, not only are Western secular religio-political ideologies incredibly weak and corrupted by comparison (QED), but also they have no rationale to successfully counter such a religio-political ideology as Islam – one that even employs lying as an Allah-sanctioned strategy. For example, as Dr. Sami Mukaram, author of Taqiyya in Islam, writes:

    “Taqiyya is of fundamental importance in Islam. Practically every Islamic sect agrees to it and practices it… Taqiyya is very prevalent in Islamic politics, especially in the modern era.”

    (There are specific references to taqiyya in the Quran, the Hadith, and in Islamic law – see here.)
    .
    None of this invalidates what I said above:

    “The first step forward to lasting peace could arguably be for the West to stop bombing Islamic nations and respect and embrace Islam, and Islam would embrace them.”

    But would that lead to the possibility of a long-lasting peace?
    My personal view is that it might minimise the potential aggregate death toll, but then I would reflect that the Victorian Prime Minister William Gladstone is recorded as once brandishing the Koran in the House of Commons, announcing with great authority and prescience:

    “so long as there is this book, there will be no peace in the world.”

    On another occasion, Mr Gladstone is recorded as referring to the Koran as:

    “this accursed book.”

    Goodness knows why he would have said these things.

    /sarc off.

  • Paul Marks

    Mr O’Neill is correct.

    The “liberal” elite need not have worried.

    Most Westerners were intellectually castrated long ago.

    They are not going to fight.

    They will not even admit they have a civilizational opponent.

    They will waste their energies ranting about “ISIS” – an organisation that did not exist a few years ago, and will not exist in a few years time.

    The basic problem will continue – and most people (with the exception of a few brave commenters above) will not even mention it.

  • Paul Marks

    By the way – one can not accuse the Islamist half of Turkey of much deception about the Paris attack.

    The government lies its head off – pretends to care, but the ordinary people (on the Islamist side of divided Turkey) do not.

    For example during the “minutes silence” at the football game, the ordinary Turks laughed and hooted – and shouted “God is Great” – the Islamic battle cry.

    And the West……

    Did nothing – did not reply to the insult at all.

    Such cowardly “liberals” as the modern West with their endless “they are lovely really” – do not deserve to survive.

    And this is the population – this is “us”.

    Of course Turkey will attack ISIS now – and most likely wipe it out.

    But that will be victory at all for the West – because the Turkish Sultan (from his thousand room palace) wants the Muslim Brotherhood in power in Syria.

    The same objective as ISIS – the crushing of infidels all over the world, but more intelligent tactics than ISIS.

    And if the Shia win instead?

    That means the victory of the “Party of God” from Lebanon and the Revolutionary Guard of Iran.

    Heads the West loses.

    And tails – the West loses.

    While Westerners just close their eyes to their own towns and cities falling in Europe – a little bit more every day.

    Eyes tight shut, fingers in the ears, and going “la, la, la” at the top of their voices.

    How can we survive in the long term?

    I see no chance of it.

  • bobby b

    Mr. Marks:

    My daughter is home on leave this week.

    From conversations, I get the distinct impression that, once we rid ourselves of our current CIC and his successor replaces all of the BHO-fellators who have taken over the general ranks, we have a well-trained and eager crop of warriors ready and willing to go over and enforce our outdated and discredited Western values amongst the barbarians.

    So, I think it’s not as bleak as it seems.

  • Julie near Chicago

    bobby b, from your comment I infer that you believe the Jackasses will be in labor to deliver a stillbirth next November. I certainly hope so. Then replacing the Sithian spawn with something more closely approaching the human species and having some sense of self-preservation may indeed come to pass.

  • Slartibartfarst

    @Paul Marks:

    “While Westerners just close their eyes to their own towns and cities falling in Europe – a little bit more every day.
    Eyes tight shut, fingers in the ears, and going “la, la, la” at the top of their voices.
    How can we survive in the long term?”

    Absolutely, and I would have given the survival prospects a thumbs-down – that is, until today, when I coincidentally stumbled upon this message of hope: Sweden’s Self-Inflicted Nightmare
    .
    Sure, maybe it’s too late to prevent the Swedish suicide from completing, but at least the Swedes would seem to have awoken to the moronic nature of what they have been inflicting upon their people and society, albeit belatedly. The Swedish Experiment should stand as a lesson to all of us and as an example of what happens when you implement policy according to an infeasible and unsustainable religio-political ideology apparently based on political correctness and wishful thinking (magic thinking).

  • Slartibartfarst

    @Julie near Chicago:

    bobby b, from your comment I infer that you believe the Jackasses will be in labor to deliver a stillbirth next November. I certainly hope so. Then replacing the Sithian spawn with something more closely approaching the human species and having some sense of self-preservation may indeed come to pass.

    Some people (not me, you understand) might say that you have put it most aptly and succinctly – though possibly unnecessarily offensively – but I couldn’t possibly comment.

  • Slartibartfarst

    @bobby b:

    “…ready and willing to go over and enforce our outdated and discredited Western values amongst the barbarians.”

    Before they “go over” they might need to address the 5th column within.

  • bobby b

    S:

    The Posse Comitatus Act (18 U.S.C 1385) forbids them from domestic efforts.

    Amendment II to the U.S. Constitution provides an alternative.

    (Well, unless they attack Martha first, in which case we’ve all voted to stay indoors and tremble pathetically while awaiting our betters.)

  • Richard Thomas

    To be fair, the news has reported French bombing of Isis targets which may have blunted such calls somewhat. Calls for “something has to be done” are a little pointless when something is.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Dear Slarti,

    Perhaps you do not realize that I have a reputation to uphold. I would not want to present a deceptive appearance that would lead people to speculate that I might be full of sisterly love, or at least a plausible mockup thereof. I see nothing unnecessary about offending the Sith and Its sycophants. It is what any red-blooded American girl of grandmotherly age would do.

    Therefore I am gratified that you chose not to comment.

    Of course it pains me dreadfully to show appreciation of any sort, but nevertheless I cannot help feeling a bit of warmth upon reading the first part of the comment you didn’t make. (And being entertained by the rest.) :>)))

  • Mr Ed

    Well according to Breitbart London, West Ham football (soccer) fans have a new chant.

    ‘Jihadi John, he’s f***ing dead, he had a bomb dropped on his head.’

    You would have to be a public sector middle class Briton to disapprove.

  • Slartibartfarst

    I wrote above that:

    The Western religio-political ideology of democracy … is weak and its priests unable to comprehend what to do, being hamstrung by their own sick ideologies not to respond in any direct and targeted manner that might be successful in eradicating the obvious pernicious effects (to them) of Islam within their democratic societies and territories.

    Coincidentally I just read on Human Rights Watch a post entitled: France: New Emergency Powers Threaten Rights, where it says:

    “France should apply broad new powers granted under an expanded state of emergency law in as narrow and limited manner as possible to avoid trampling on human rights, Human Rights Watch said today.”

    And so it begins. France certainly seems to have the inclination and the potential to follow the example of The Swedish Experiment (see above) of automatic suicide from unwittingly hosting an immigrant population with a religio-political ideology which forbids acculturation into the host, and which commands its followers to strive for the supremacy of their brand of religio-political ideology in all aspects of society.
    .
    Thus France could well find itself being unable to do what it must to defend itself, and being progressively restrained by a straitjacket manufactured out of its own ethos.

  • Nicholas (Andy.royd) Gray

    Next, you’ll be suggesting that the police should not work 9-5, and not have the weekend off! WE are not the barbarians, and our good example will uplift our opponents, civilizing them in the process!

  • Slartibartfarst

    @Nicholas (Andy.royd) Gray:

    …our good example will uplift our opponents, civilizing them in the process!

    Yeah, right. Very droll.