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

Being nonwhite leaves one protected in this environment only to the extent that one toes the ideological line. An assistant professor of color who cannot quite get with the program writes, “At the moment, I’m more anxious about this problem than anything else in my career,” noting that “the truth is that over the last few years, this new norm of intolerance and cult of social justice has marginalized me more than all racism I have ever faced in my life.”

John McWhorter

21 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • Flubber

    You would have thought any person of colour (yuk) with any sense of decency would object to one of BLM’s core values – the abolition of the nuclear family.

    There’s nothing else that has damaged the black community more than the lack of nuclear families.

  • bobby b

    Sadly, as in so many situations today, 5% of the population is going to make an impact all out of scale to their merit because the rest of us are going to sit back and watch.

    If there was ever a time when Niemöller’s “first they came for . . .” was apropos, it’s now. If, as the author asserts, more than 50% of academics worry for their own fate during this cancellation celebration, they ought to be able to quash it. But they won’t.

    I’m in bear country right now. There’s an old bit of wisdom about that – you don’t need to be faster than the bear, just faster than one person in your group. But eventually there’ll be no one behind you, and it’ll be your turn to be eaten.

  • Robert

    Flubber said:
    “You would have thought any person of colour (yuk) with any sense of decency would object to one of BLM’s core values – the abolition of the nuclear family.”

    Is this what you’re referring to?
    “We disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure requirement by supporting each other as extended families and “villages” that collectively care for one another, especially our children, to the degree that mothers, parents, and children are comfortable.”
    https://blacklivesmatter.com/what-we-believe/

    That paragraph is quite vague, and the phrase “Western-prescribed nuclear family structure requirement” is pretty meaningless, but I don’t think the paragraph taken as a whole really says anything terribly objectionable. Do you?

    It’s also very clearly not calling for “the abolition of the nuclear family” as you claimed.

  • staghounds

    I like it that the other kind of parent is carefully unnamed.

    Easy divorce and welfare broke the family fifty years ago. These people are the second and third 50% abandoned by father generation.

  • The BLM sentence ‘Robert’ (September 3, 2020 at 10:12 am) quotes states that BLM will ‘disrupt’ the family – i.e. will give themselves the power to disrupt the family. The very vagueness he claims to find reassuring informs us that the this disruption will be be at their whim, unhindered by definitions. The anodyne assurances later in the quoted sentence (that this disruption will not go beyond what parents find ‘comfortable’) are best assessed in the light of other pro-BLM assurances – that the riots are ‘mostly peaceful’, for example – and other statements by the sort of woke white women who represent BLM far more than the average black person does:

    “Unless revolution uproots the basic social organization, the biological family … the tapeworm of exploitation will never be annihilated.” (Shulamith Firestone)

    “Want to Dismantle Capitalism? Abolish the Family.” (interview with feminist theorist Sophie Lewis)

    This is just the PC’s usual presentation of what they want to do anyway as part of their solution to any new issue.

    I’d say Flubber’s point is only a minor aspect of how BLM neither helps nor represent blacks or their families, but revealing about much white marxists run the movement. (If BLM let the comfort of families affect them, black or otherwise, they’d riot in the daytime and let young children sleep at night. They’d also try to avoid gunning down 8-year-old girls – or at least black ones.)

    I don’t suppose many besides ‘Robert’ needed that pointing out – or that ‘Robert’ will benefit (none so blind as those who have decided in advance to keep their eyes shut).

  • Fen Tiger

    It’s also very clearly not calling for “the abolition of the nuclear family” as you claimed.

    Motte and bailey. BLM intends to “disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure requirement” by abolishing it. The vague wording is there to allow weaselly denials (for the benefit of the credulous) should they be expedient.

  • It’s also very clearly not calling for “the abolition of the nuclear family” as you claimed.

    Sure, it’s possible to argue that, but BLM are a Marxist organisation, setup by a group of avowed and committed Marxist, therefore we have to apply the basic principles of “Kremlinology” to anything they say.

    By providing support structures outwith the state, the standard nuclear family essentially undermines the state and creates the seeds of its own destruction. No matter how strong or compulsory your Hitler Youth / Young Pioneers program is, you never get enough Pavlik Morozov’s or Lei Feng’s or Herbert Norkus’ types.

    Sure, they could seize kids at birth, but then people just stop having kids as far as was possible. This was such a big problem for places like Romania that their Communist dictator Nicolae Ceaușescu did.

    In 1966, in an attempt to boost the country’s population, Ceaușescu made abortion illegal and introduced Decree 770 in order to reverse the Romanian population’s low birth and fertility rates. Mothers of at least five children were entitled to receive significant benefits, while mothers of at least ten children were declared “heroine mothers” by the Romanian state. Few women ever sought to receive this status. Instead, the average Romanian family had two to three children during this period

    The fact that BLM wants to destroy the nuclear family (despite hiding that in muted terms), doesn’t surprise me, since it is the standard approach of Commies/Marxists.

  • It’s also very clearly not calling for “the abolition of the nuclear family” as you claimed.

    Seriously? Not sure how you can read that and conclude that is not exactly what they are calling for.

  • Nullius in Verba

    “That paragraph is quite vague, and the phrase “Western-prescribed nuclear family structure requirement” is pretty meaningless, but I don’t think the paragraph taken as a whole really says anything terribly objectionable. Do you?”

    It depends on how much you know about the Marxist view of the family. The ignorant would probably interpret it as something vaguely like a community of families supporting one another. But if you know any Marxist theory, it’s pretty obvious what it’s alluding to.

    This is actually more from Engels than Marx, who only discussed it in a few places, but in Marxist theory the family is part of the superstructure of society that maintains capitalist exploitation by indoctrinating the young to believe in the rightness of the hierarchical nature of society (i.e. that those at the top deserve their place, those at the bottom are there because they’re unskilled or don’t try, and capitalist society is fair); by providing a structure for the inheritance of wealth to one’s descendents; to divide the working classes into individual groups in competition with each other, to which they give their ultimate loyalty and sacrifice their own interests to, rather than uniting as a group with their loyalty given to their class; to engage in consumerist competition with one another, creating the demand that capitalism relies on for its profits; to provide the workers with an outlet for their frustrations and misery, either as a source of comfort away from work, or in the case of feminist theory, wives becoming a punch bag for husbands to take their frustrations out on, which stops those frustrations with work building up into a revolution; and the patriarchal structure of the family provides a hierarchical model for society as a whole – the kids learn that they’re at the bottom, their duty is to obey their parents, and it’s a wife’s duty to obey her husband, and thus we all learn obedience to authority.

    Essentially, the aim of dissolving the family is to replace family loyalties with class loyalties; to replace parents with the communist party.

    Then there is no escape from the party, no alternative support group besides the party, no space for alternative worldviews to hide in and survive. It’s the essence of totalitarian society – a world with no private sphere separate from the state’s oversight and control.

    “I don’t suppose many besides ‘Robert’ needed that pointing out – or that ‘Robert’ will benefit (none so blind as those who have decided in advance to keep their eyes shut).”

    If nobody ever points it out, there is a risk of it becoming dogma – things people believe without knowing why, just because everybody around them says it’s true, but don’t explain. Eventually, the reasons are forgotten and the defences lost, and doctrine becomes a game of Chinese whispers.

    And if somebody who evidently doesn’t know the reasons is willing to politely ask why we think as we do, it’s important to tell them. It’s the only way understanding can spread. (Nobody is convinced by appeals to somebody else’s blind dogma/faith.) Even if the person asking isn’t listening, somebody else may be. It provides a guard against our own misunderstandings, if our beliefs are constantly tested with the challenge to explain. It’s more likely to persuade them that we’re reasonable people. And it keeps the reasons and arguments alive.

    Nobody should want to live in an echo chamber.

  • lucklucky

    “That paragraph is quite vague, and the phrase “Western-prescribed nuclear family structure requirement” is pretty meaningless, but I don’t think the paragraph taken as a whole really says anything terribly objectionable. Do you?

    It’s also very clearly not calling for “the abolition of the nuclear family” as you claimed.”

    Are you incapable of reading even what you wrote?

    The fact that they want to destroy some family structure also does not tell you nothing… Well i guess i can count you on Totalitarian Left.

  • Nullius in Verba

    “Seriously? Not sure how you can read that and conclude that is not exactly what they are calling for.”

    They don’t say it explicitly, and if you’re not aware of the Marxist context you could be excused for not seeing it. I’m sure this is deliberate. They’re looking for support (or at least, indifference) from non-Marxists until the revolution starts. They’re not going to put anything on their main website that’s going to put potential supporters off.

    An alternative way of looking at it is to interpret them as saying that nuclear families should not be compulsory, not that they should be forbidden or abolished. It’s why they used the word “requirement”. They may be only proposing to provide a community support network in case it’s needed, so having a nuclear family is no longer a requirement, without necessarily advocating for the family’s destruction.

    You and I know what they really mean, because we know that the organisers are heavily Marxist, but if you don’t know that (and I suspect most of their supporters don’t, and wouldn’t understand why that was a problem if they did) then it’s not obvious.

    Whether Robert knows, I can’t say. But I’m sure ‘Bob from accounts’ or whoever it was in reading this won’t see anything to alarm them in that.

    It’s all about the meta-context, you know.

  • lucklucky

    What part of word “disrupt” is not understandable?

  • Itellyounothing

    The bit that involves acknowledging there are bad people who do bad things, life has risk and you can’t avoid it, there is no free lunch, protests aren’t all peaceful, Marxists always lie….

  • bobby b

    Remember Mrs. Parsons’ children in Orwell’s 1984?

    They were Junior Spies, and they eventually turned Mr. Parsons in for Thoughtcrime. He was then disappeared.

    That’s what this quote means:

    “We disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure requirement by supporting each other as extended families and “villages” that collectively care for one another, especially our children, to the degree that mothers, parents, and children are comfortable.”

    But they forgot to ask Mr. Parsons, before he left, if that made him comfortable.

    And where do you think Hilary Clinton got the word “village” in her “it takes a village” book title?

  • Nullius in Verba

    “What part of word “disrupt” is not understandable?”

    That’s not the question. The question is whether they said “We disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family” or “We disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure requirement”?

    So there’s an argument that people are forced into fitting into a nuclear family pattern, or they get punished economically. If the guy abandons his wife and child, and she has to bring him/her up on their own, with a minimum wage part-time job, it’s a nightmare. It causes poverty, and that leads to crime, and another generation of kids who will repeat the same story.

    The idea is that you’re forced to live the way society says you must live, in nuclear families of wage slaves with people you come to hate, or suffer dire consequences. That’s how a lot of the black community live.

    So how about instead of abandoning individuals to poverty and deprivation, you instead support people who find themselves in broken families as a community. Charity and mutual aid. Looking out for one another. Child benefit and welfare, even. Don’t punish the wives and children for the sins of the fathers. End the cycle of poverty.

    It’s a perfectly reasonable interpretation, and how I suspect 90%+ of the people reading it will interpret it. It says nothing at all about eliminating the family. Only if you read it knowing that they’re Marxists does the Marxist interpretation come through. You see it only if you are expecting to see it.

    “A meta-context is not a philosophy or a political belief, but rather the lens through which someone sees the world. It is a tradition of thought, a vibe, set of ‘givens’, the frames of reference within which questions are posed and answers found.”

  • APL

    Marxist race baiter, ‘outs’* herself for the racist race baiter she is.

    all these white New Yorkers who waited four hours with us to be able to speak and then did not yield their time for Black and Brown indigenous New Yorkers” — Jessica La Bombalera AKA Jessica Krug.

    *”Jess Krug, professor at @GWtweets, is someone I called a friend up until this morning when she gave me a call admitting to everything written here. She didn’t do it out of benevolence. She did it because she had been found out“. — Hari Ziyad

    Honestly, I thought this was an Onion article. But no, it’s true.

  • Nullius in Verba (September 3, 2020 at 11:53 pm), it is indeed (or was fairly recently) perfectly possible to meet intelligent UK citizens who would look rather blankly at you if the word ‘woke’ chanced to enter a conversation (I speak from experience of replying to such a person who had started an amicable political discussion), and while they know what Marxism is, any reference to the Frankfurt school or more modern terms might be more likely to have them thinking the one using such terms was the fanatic, not the one deserving them.

    This is not the first time Robert has appeared and I don’t think he is any such person. That said, there can indeed be value in practicing how to explain a sense of the danger to those who (maybe sensible enough in other spheres) have not yet grasped it. At other times, the propaganda is sloppier, the true intent easier to draw out, and the sense of this can be part of the argument – sometimes should be, to avoid normalising absurdity. You suggest 90% might see the propagandist’s intended soft-soap, not their intent, and offered your argument for that case. I’m guessing a lower percentage and made a different presentation. Our points overlap: we both stress that BLM is a marxist-run organisation.

    One size does not fit all – and of course, sometimes we are talking to each other, not preparing for any who could honestly, if very foolishly, not pick up on the sinisterness of the BLM sentence.

  • Paul Marks

    “Whiteness” is not really about skin colour – the description of “whiteness” used by people who teach American government employees (including those in charge of developing nuclear weapons) is mainly about a series of cultural and personal traits – such as heard work, believing in objective truth, logical reasoning, honesty, and-so-on. This is what American government employees are being taught to HATE.

    In short black people can be guilty of “whiteness” as this means what people in the past (regardless of skin colour) regarded as VIRTUE – which the Frankfurt School of Marxism (which dominates the education system, the media, and both government and Corporate bureaucracies) regard as EVIL – for they have inverted morality.

    In the past if someone did something honourable and good it was said “that was white of you” and it was NOT about skin colour.

    Now if someone is honest, believes in objective truth, presents logical arguments and is hard working – they are guilty of “whiteness” (regardless of the colour of their skin) and they MUST BE DESTROYED.

    Twitter and the most of the rest of Big Business (as well as the education system and the government bureaucracy) often act against black conservatives now – as black conservatives are (by Frankfurt School of Marxism standards) guilty of “whiteness”.

  • Paul Marks

    In the British context – the Home Office had senior academic advisers pushing Marxist racial theory as far back as the 1970s (for example the father of the Labour politician Lisa Nandy), and it goes back before the 1970s.

    The word “woke” is new – but the doctrines of the Frankfurt School of Marxism are not new. They have got stronger and stronger over time – because they are not really challenged, or even correctly NAMED.

    The Conservatives running round in the 1980s talking about “Political Correctness Gone Mad” showed they did not even understand what “PC” is (Frankfurt School of Marxism) and how it was nothing to do with “gone mad”.

    How can people defeat an enemy, in this case the Frankfurt School of Marxism, when they do not even know what it is? When they lack even basic knowledge.

  • In the memory-hole world of PC, I’m never sure who should be the more annoyed when a loudly-proclaimed policy is silently discarded – those who spent time and effort refuting it or those who spent time and effort defending it. 🙂 (Of course when, as above, the time and effort is mere comment writing, neither side has overmuch to moan about.)

    BLM have stealth-edited their website to remove the “what we believe” page. No more will BLM “disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure” or “foster a queer-affirming network” or “free ourselves from the tight grip of heteronormative thinking”. Just a little spat within the intersectional hierarchy, I guess. 🙂

    Actually, I guess supporters are expected to place their absolute trust in the movement’s utter dishonesty, and assume (in the face of earlier evidence) that this is all just pre-election PR (I’m sure some will). Just as

    No properly-indoctrinated communist felt the party was ‘lying’ in thus proclaiming one set of policies in public and its exact opposite in private.

    so no properly-indoctrinated woke person will think the marxists who run BLM were or are ‘lying’ either when they put this page up or when they took it down.

  • […] and effort refuting it or those who spent time and effort defending it. 🙂 (Of course when, as in this recent thread, the time and effort is mere comment writing, neither side has overmuch to moan […]

    This comment links to my recent comment in the 20-day-old post linked from the words “this recent thread” in the OP. The ‘shadowy cabal’ correctly deduced that, because that post was called ‘Samizdata Quote of the Day’, people would overlook it in the blogroll.

    I am flattered that my comment be deemed worthy of being a post. I urge the shadowy cabal again, as I and others have done in the past, to use ‘Samizdata Quote of Sep 2nd’ or ‘John Whorter Quote of the Day’ or some title (e.g. ‘John Whorter: BLM marginalized me more than racism’) or whatever, so continuing discussions can be followed in the blogroll.

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>