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]

Why is this not the world’s biggest ongoing news story?

In a cultural genocide with few parallels since World War II, thousands of Muslim religious sites have been destroyed. At least 1 million Muslims have been confined to camps, where aging imams are shackled and young men are forced to renounce their faith. Muslims not locked away are forced to eat during the fasting month of Ramadan, forced to drink and smoke in violation of their faith, barred from praying or studying the Koran or making the pilgrimage to Mecca.

Fred Hiatt

I am amazed this is not the biggest ongoing news story on the planet. Yet the silence from the world, particularly the Muslim world, is astonishing. Makes one wonder (as if) what is really behind the unrelenting focus on Israel when China can do this with hardly a murmur.

Samizdata quote of the day

There is no idea so stupid you can’t find a professor who believes it.

– H. L. Mencken

Samizdata quote of the day

If you want to wear a poppy, then do so. If you do not, then again, so be it. If liberty is to mean anything, then it means the right not to wear a poppy and the dead of two world wars doubtless wouldn’t have cared overmuch either way – being somewhat more mature than their descendants.

Longrider

Samizdata quote of the day

Based on the reaction from defenders of the new gender orthodoxy, you would have thought Bailey were a Cossack leader announcing a pogrom. “This is frightening and nasty. There is no LGB without the T,” tweeted Owen Jones, who is perhaps Britain’s best-known gay journalist. (This is not new behaviour for Jones, who often starts pile-ons against anyone he regards as transphobic—especially women.) Anthony Watson, an advisor to the opposition Labour Party, said he was “horrified and disgusted,” and described the Alliance as a “#hategroup.” Linda Riley, the editor of Diva, a lesbian magazine that proclaims itself “trans-inclusive,” adapted Martin Niemöller’s famous 1946 confession, First They Came, Tweeting, “First they came for the T…”—thereby suggesting that refusing to prioritize the artifice of gender ideology over inborn sexual orientation is the first step toward some kind of real or metaphorical Holocaust.

Helen Joyce

Samizdata quote of the day

Fascism entirely agrees with Mr. Maynard Keynes, despite the latter’s prominent position as a Liberal. In fact, Mr. Keynes’ excellent little book, The End of Laissez-Faire (l926) might, so far as it goes, serve as a useful introduction to fascist economics. There is scarcely anything to object to in it and there is much to applaud.

– Benito Mussolini (as quoted in “Universal Aspects of Fascism” by James Strachey Barnes, Williams and Norgate, London: UK, (pp. 113-114), 1928)

Samizdata quote of the day

“I came here to die with you. Or live with you. Dying ain’t so hard for men like you and me. It’s living that’s hard when all you’ve ever cared about has been butchered or raped. Governments don’t live together–people live together. With governments, you don’t always get a fair word or a fair fight. Well, I’ve come here to give you either one or get either one from you. I came here like this so you’ll know my word of death is true, and my word of life is then true. The bear lives here, the wolf, the antelope, the Comanche. And so will we. Now we’ll only hunt what we need to live on, same as the Comanche does. And every spring, when the grass turns green, and the Comanche moves north, you can rest here in peace, butcher some of our cattle, and jerk beef for the journey. The sign of the Comanche, that will be on our lodge. That’s my word of life.”

Josey Wales, played by Clint Eastwood in the movie, The Outlaw Josey Wales. Context: the film is based in the aftermath of the Civil War, and Wales is on the run and took refuge in Indian territory. I rather like the libertarian sentiments in part of this quote (such as his line about governments), and Clint Eastwood, by the way, has always struck me as one of the more intelligent men to have worked in Hollywood. His movies are famously delivered on time, and on budget.

The Outlaw Josey Wales is, in my view, his best Western. Terrific supporting performance from Chief Dan George.

Samizdata quote of the day

Regardless of the opinions of Boris, if fusion comes on line in the middle of the attempts by the likes of the Rebellion to turn the western world into a weakened communist hive that the East will invade, high profile teenagers will likely be exposed as the anti-progress communists they are rather than environmentalists.

A certain teenager wants the West to emit less carbon so the East, who already emit over 60% of if, can emit more carbon. Check out her TED talk – she says it out loud (and much of the rest of the manifesto of the people who switched to Green politics in the 80s and early 90s after their preferred ism failed).

– the delightfully pseudonymous BeamUpDenied casting his or her pearls before the Gadarene swine on the Guardian

Samizdata quote of the day

“Did you know that your dog owns your house, or rather some portion of it? If this is not immediately obvious to you, you will find it helpful to consider some aspects of the ethics and economics of redistribution.”

Anthony de Jasay, the political philosopher who died not long ago, and one of those intellectuals that many people will not have heard of. A marvellous writer. The essay from which these words come is a gem.

Samizdata quote of the day

These people who live a vigorous life to 70, 80, 90 years of age—when I look at what those people “do,” almost all of it is what I classify as play. It’s not meaningful work. They’re riding motorcycles; they’re hiking. Which can all have value—don’t get me wrong. But if it’s the main thing in your life? Ummm, that’s not probably a meaningful life.

— Ezekiel Emanuel, chair of the University of Pennsylvania’s department of medical ethics and health policy and “a chief architect of Obamacare”.

Samizdata quote of the day

Emotion-based appeals not only allow politicians to avoid the far more difficult business of rationally and politically justifying themselves and their policies to the electorate — they also help to disguise the character of measures that would be a very hard sell indeed if they were made explicit. The UK government’s declared target of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, for example, apparently feels so good that others have sought to heighten the sensation by declaring a 2030 or 2025 target. The harsh realities of immiseration, upheaval and austerity that meeting such a target would entail, however, are unlikely to be spelled out openly in any election manifestos.

Philip Hammond (no, not that one, a different one)

Samizdata quote of the day

By the end of my teaching career, ahistorical undergraduate students were becoming disturbingly common. They did not know the hellish poverty the vast majority of humanity had endured for millennia. They didn’t believe the past could have been as brutal as writers such as Matt Ridley described in his book The Rational Optimist. Even worse, exposed to hard evidence, some students refuse to question their positions.

Camille Paglia explains that because “Everything is so easy now, [undergrads] have a sense that this is the way life has always been.” Paglia continues, “Because they’ve never been exposed to history, they have no idea that these are recent attainments that come from a very specific economic system.”

Capitalism, she continues, has “produced this cornucopia around us. But the young seem to believe in having the government run everything.”

Barry Brownstein

Samizdata limerick of the day

As seen on a person’s Facebook feed, in relation to those Extinction Rebellion characters as referenced in the post immediately below this one:

There once was an extinction rebellion
Led by a diminutive hellion
Who lives in a yurt
And is covered in dirt
With beliefs distinctly Orwellian.

Enjoy!