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 night that identifies as a day

Kathleen Stock’s latest article in Unherd is titled “The emptiness of being queer” and subtitled “Sexual libertarians and rainbow bureaucrats created the perfect racket”. She should have subtitled it “Sexual libertines and rainbow bureaucrats created the perfect racket”, but given Stock’s own background and orientation, I happily overlook the minor misphrasing of her subtitle in view of the free-speech-forthrightness of her title.

Perhaps it won’t have escaped the reader thus far that there’s a biological element to all this too. The sexual libertarians are mostly men; the staff and trustees of Mermaids are nearly all female — no matter how they identify — and, in my experience, so are most other rainbow bureaucrats. Despite foundational intellectual myths, it turns out biological sex matters in the queer world too. And though they won’t like it, it’s tempting to see these two factions as part of a tediously conventional nuclear family, with rebellious jack-the-lad Dad and solicitous stay-at-home Mum, and with many confused children shunting between the two.

It was always inevitably a Stalin or a Mao who rose to rule any free-speech-hating communist party, unhindered by the purgeable presence in its early ranks of sincere types like Victor Kravchenko or Jung Chang’s father. I explained here why, similarly, groomers and pedophiles would come to control the free-speech-hating ‘identify’ movement, whatever other motives also helped start it.

However I forgot to add (as yet another example of oppressive tyrants pretending to be oppressed rebels, of those who hurt you pretending they help you) that the rainbow-bureaucrat-groomer side of that movement would aggressively self-identify as protective helpers.

Compared to that, it is indeed “no matter how they identify” otherwise.

14 comments to Samizdata quote of the night that identifies as a day

  • Lee Moore

    Or as Robert Bolt put it in “A Man For All Seasons” in the context of the venal Richard Rich seeking a position at court :

    “a man should go where he will not be tempted”

    If “should” is not part of your personality, then you’ll go eagerly and directly to where you WILL be tempted, and then bathe luxuriously in the temptations.

  • bobby b

    I think we should be careful not to mistake the self-proclaimed “leaders” of any cohort of similar people with those people. Loosely, the map is not the territory. The vast majority of people I have known who have been homosexual, or bi-sexual, and even a-sexual, have been normal, functioning, and moral in proportions that seem to match society at large.

    But every group now tends to be overtaken by those damaged purple-haired people who want power – who want power far more than they want “equality” for their group – and they end up being the ones who arrogate their own permission and power to define what is important to their group. Thus, we get very campy and damaged people speaking “on behalf of” a rather boring and normal membership.

    As for “libertine” in place of “libertarian” – I note that “libertine” means (in one source) “a person, especially a man, who behaves without moral principles or a sense of responsibility, especially in sexual matters.”

    I note that it fails to define moral principles, but the subtext is clearly “my moral principles.” Were I a gay man looking for love (or a reasonable facsimile) in an anti-gay world, I might have to resort to furtive and scattered assignations with random co-believers instead of forming open longstanding monogamous relationships too. Is that immoral? Or did the rest of us make it necessary because we want to think of ourselves as the proper norm? Can I destroy all of your food and then denounce you as a thief when you take what you need?

  • I think we should be careful not to mistake the self-proclaimed “leaders” of any cohort of similar people with those people. (bobby b, May 8, 2022 at 7:43 pm)

    That would relate to my remark about communist parties being run by people like Mao, Stalin and Kim il (whatever), despite also having members like Jung Chang’s parents or Kravchenko. Indeed, it could also relate to why someone like Kathleen Stock writes that article (with that title).

    Libertine is an old word – older than libertarian, I’d guess – so it’s no surprise a living lesbian feminist like Kathleen Stock turns to a phrase like ‘sexual libertarian’ to express her idea. However I thought people on this blog might prefer a synonym to so negative a use of ‘libertarian’.

    I note that “libertine” means (in one source) “a person, especially a man, who behaves without moral principles or a sense of responsibility, especially in sexual matters.”

    Bobby b then focusses on the word ‘morality’ but it distorts the meaning not to fold in the “sense of responsibility” clause accompanying that. Refusing to own any responsibility for foreseeable consequences of sexual indulgence to the object of desire – just indulging oneself – is essential to the meaning (including to my use of it as a synonym in Kathleen’s very modern context).

    A libertine is a sexually selfish, self-indulgent person. Adam Smith noted that in his day, and in earlier times, the lifestyle was sometimes advocated by the ‘enlightened’ rich and powerful, whereas a stricter one was typically praised (though not always practised) by the poor. He explained the difference by saying that those with riches and power could painlessly pay off that lifestyle’s consequences, and so philosophically hide from themselves any need for a ‘sense of responsibility’, whereas the poor could not afford the same ignorance.

  • Snorri Godhi

    Bobby: your comment finds me mostly in agreement — indeed, i have been saying for some time that all this Frankfurt BS is a new “political formula” (using Gaetano Mosca’s terminology), an attempt to justify the rule of the establishment, after the failure of previous attempts (Divine Right, General Will, Class Struggle, etc).

    A corollary is that those of “us” who attack the LGBT+ and/or other “oppressed” groups, instead of hitting the head of the snake, are playing into the hands of the regime.
    (Excuses for the combination of metaphors.)

  • Shitty behaviour towards people we don’t like is nothing new though is it? The Jews were targets of oppression by the Romans long before a certain someone may or not have been crucified in Jerusalem.

    We don’t do that any more because we consider it reprehensible behaviour in our society.*

    Most Romans wouldn’t have batted an eye at a wealthy man owning a cute little slave boy for sex or raping his female slaves when the urge was upon him, simply because they were his property.

    We don’t do that any more because we consider it reprehensible behaviour in our society.

    The reasons we legalised homosexual acts in the UK in 1967 were complicated, but at least partly was the dismissal of Victorian morality / hypocrisy and the view that what consenting adults do in the privacy of their own homes is not the business of the state.

    Once again, society has moved on and become more socially liberal and we all benefit when members of our society no longer live in fear of physical violence, imprisonment or social ostracisation simply by virtue of who they are or what they believe.

    The problem inevitably comes though when liberty turns to license and activists keep pushing and pushing the envelope until there is an outright refusal of “THIS GOES TOO FAR!“.

    We’re kind of getting there with the tranny delusion and we are absolutely there when it comes to paedophilia. That shit didn’t cut it with NAMbLA or PIE in the 1970’s and it still doesn’t cut it today.

    I find the practices of teachers and social services in indoctrinating young children in their tranny delusion absolutely reprehensible and have no problem calling people that do that “Groomers” (something which they hate because it cuts to the truth).

    It’s not just the “Woke agenda” (including racist identitarianism) that is the problem, it is pushing that agenda onto the very young that is offensive in the extreme and needs to be stopped dead in its tracks.

    * – Certain members of the Religion of Peace notwithstanding

  • bobby b

    Niall Kilmartin
    May 8, 2022 at 9:46 pm

    “Refusing to own any responsibility for foreseeable consequences of sexual indulgence to the object of desire – just indulging oneself – is essential to the meaning (including to my use of it as a synonym in Kathleen’s very modern context).”

    But . . . following a 30-year stable society-approved relationship, I have three “consequences” running around, loosed upon the world. Had I instead taken a gay male lover for that period, there would have been no consequences. Maybe a better-decorated house, but . . .

    (And there should be no comfort in an assertion that frequent gay sex is a bad consequence in and of itself because it’s gay sex. Too circular. I think we need to look to external consequences.)

    So, who are the libertines, in the “responsible for consequences” sense? It would seem to be the hetero me. (I’ll gladly accept responsibility now that I know that my kids are exceptional, but they would have been mine even were they not, and I fathered them without even wondering if they would be good or bad for the world.)

    (I apologize if I’m hijacking the point of your post with my tangent here.

    Reading Ms. Stock’s writing, I was wondering who was it who said that you start out as the avant-garde, but you’re soon just the garde. That’s her complaint. She wants that rebel cachet, she wants to be the outlaw intellectual transgressor, but she also likes how that phase led her into the secure rich leader-of-people position she currently occupies, and she’s whining that she wants both, she deserves both, dammit!)

  • John

    My favourite John Otway song rhymes the words Libertine and Josephine to good effect.

    I’ll get my coat.

  • Snorri Godhi

    I seem to remember reading that the word ‘liberal’ was originally an alternative spelling of ‘libertine’.

    As for ‘libertarian’, i am uneasy with the word; partly because many self-defined libertarians are cranks, but also because of its association with ‘metaphysical libertarianism’, which i see as an argument *against* political libertarianism.

  • Stonyground

    Isn’t part of the problem that all kinds of activists can apply for funding from the government in order to promote their causes? If the government stopped paying them they would have to go and get a real job.

  • If the government stopped paying them they would have to go and get a real job.

    Nah. Someone like George Soros would probably fund them at a pinch, although they would have to abide by his terms and conditions which are a bit more opaque than the governments.

  • bobby b (May 8, 2022 at 11:33 pm), you are, as you say, “hijacking the point”. 🙂 My earlier reply was to clarify my meaning and in doing so check whether you were knowingly hijacking it or unwittingly missing it. Your apology for hijacking is appreciated, but perhaps needless or excessive, as this is not the first time, and won’t be the last, that threads go off-topic – the typical etiquette I observe is merely that commenters acknowledge when they are a bit (or a lot) OT.

    To start what will turn into a relevant reply to your comment’s main point, I’ll quote the first paragraph of an old comment of mine. Far above it in the thread of Mr Ed’s post, titled “Marking Stalin’s victims in Russia“, someone went so off-topic as to start talking about abortion, and led other commenters astray likewise. By all means compare the amount of true penitence 🙂 present or absent in your apology for ‘hijacking’ with my old apology for eventually following them:

    I guess I should confess I’m just not good at restraining myself from off-topic remarks when tempted, consoling myself with apologetic side-notes like this one. Here, however, I think I can drag the topic of abortion that has arisen back towards the topic of totalitarian murder that the original post addressed. See what you think.

    For the rest of your comment, I refer you to this paragraph from a later comment of mine in that same thread that discussed Sir Walter Scott’s novel ‘The Heart of Midlothian’.

    The novel is set towards the end of a period when the Scottish state and society, thanks to John Knox and similar, had produced this law but had also created very powerful incentives – much more powerful than in England – for an illegitimate birth to alarm mother and father too; the female was found first, of course, and then the kirk session was often both savage and effective in hunting down the father. (Some modern historical research has argued that male homosexuality, despite the punishments which also attached to it, saw some actual rise in Scotland in the period; the greater danger of detection through the appearance of a baby made sex that could not have that effect attractive to some.)

    In the very particular sense your comment imposes on the word ‘consequence’, those olden-time Scots chose ‘consequence-free’ sex, but – to take one example from many – when Scotland (so much more brutal and less liberty-loving than England before the union) did catch a couple, two offenders might be strung up or only one, the other being judged the first’s victim. Surely some were indeed victims of assault or exploitation – yet died because their abusers were also liars. And surely others died alone who could have been acquitted for insufficient evidence because their partners hung them out to dry to ensure the safety of their own skins. And maybe someone died alone after falsely testifying their partner was their victim.

    It is understandable that sexual morality be aware of the most natural consequence of sex (and was even more focussed on it when contraception was not easily available), but just as Kathleen observes

    it turns out biological sex matters in the queer world too

    so I suggest that there are moral consequences, and they matter, in the queer world too, both in the old days when they also had to concern themselves with malum prohibitum and today, when the malum prohibitum is more likely to be inflicted on people like you and me.

    Meanwhile, I will +1 John Galt (May 8, 2022 at 10:40 pm)

    The problem inevitably comes though when liberty turns to license

    in the hope it will encourage more on-topic comments to appear – while promising to forgive, in the the name of free-speech, any more off-topic ones. 🙂

  • Penseivat

    I assume that there are shed loads of heterosexual men and women who feel that they are, in certain ways, being ostracized and victimised because of their sexual and lifestyle views, but where are the publications or sponsors to promote their concerns and accusations?

  • Lee Moore

    I assume that there are shed loads of heterosexual men and women who feel that they are, in certain ways, being ostracized and victimised because of their sexual and lifestyle views, but where are the publications or sponsors to promote their concerns and accusations?

    The BBC is there for all of us. It will happily, not to mention earnestly, present our concerns and accusations, promoting those which are right and pointing out what is wrong with those that are wrong. If anyone’s concerns are left out, be sure it is only to save them embarrassment.

    OK – off topic, I confess.

  • I assume that there are shed loads of heterosexual men and women who feel that they are, in certain ways, being ostracized and victimised because of their sexual and lifestyle views, but where are the publications or sponsors to promote their concerns and accusations?

    Male incels are evil, and need to be ostracized more. Female incels are victims of The Patriarchy.

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