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There's basically no difference between alt-right extremists and jihadists. Both are mostly made up of angry young men that achieved nothing in their lives and in search of a life goal. Both are made up of "offended snowflakes" that take every opportunity to invent themselves a victim status to be able to whine. Both justify their actions with an ideology they usually know very little about. The only current true difference is geography: jihadists mostly live in regions unstable enough to actually cause great damage, while most alt-right fanatics live in stable countries that don't just let them go on a rampage. But put alt-righters in a power position in an unstable country and they would behave exactly like the jihadists (just look at what happened in the 1930s).
"What happened in the 1930s, Ace, was that a leftist movement -- fascism -- caused mayhem.
But, thanks for sharing your hard-won philosophy with the rest of us.
Fascism is far right extremism. Let's not rewrite history with something so absurdly preposterous and so easily disproven.
Well, Captain Ron, fascism in Germany was known as National Socialism. It was not known as National Right-Wingism.
The essence of the Nazi plague was racism. It was promoted as a Left ideology and if you know anything about National Socialism -- which you don't -- it promoted equality (and delivered on that to a certain extent), vast public spending on improved housing and living conditions and cowed German business.
It was left-wing, NOT right-wing and, in its first years, regarded as a radical egalitarian movement. Hitler despised Imperial Germany, the right-wing industrialists and anything that smacked of class privilege.
There are hundreds of monographs that confirm what I just wrote. You simply never read them.
The Saudi state has lots of oil and bribes its citizenry with lots of perks. Is it socialist or rightwing?
How about Israel?
UN Charter is the very foundation of UN but US/NATO have no qualms to break laws to attack (Iraq,Libya,Syria,etc) illegally which are war crimes, destabilizing the region leading to more violence and killing fields with millions of innocents (including children, women) being killed / raped / injured / traumatized/ displaced, setting fires to many countries... all unfolding daily and endlessly, unprecedented atrocities committed by these war criminals (Bush/Blair/Sarkozy/Cameron, etc).
This refugee crisis -a humanitarian catastrophe unfolding in Europe - is the direct result of illegal invasions/attacks (Iraq, Libya, Syria, etc)
A.Greenspan is right, "I am saddened that it is politically inconvenient to acknowledge what everyone knows: the Iraq war is largely about oil"
Obama made biting remarks about then U.K. Prime Minister D.Cameron, blaming him for Libya’s descent into chaos after the ouster of long-serving M.Gaddafi in 2011.
Even Tony Blair admitted that the illegal invasion of Iraq was wrong.
These illegal attacks/wars are very very serious war crimes which not only wasting trillions of dollars with millions of weak and defenceless victims suffering, they also have simply radicalized and created more and more terrorists, they also create huge security vacuum skilfully exploited/filled the vacuum by al Qaeda, Islamic State and many other terrorists which simply prolong, infuriate and enlarge all these endless violence/conflicts which these war criminals have a lot to answer and account for.
These heinous war crimes require global response and actions to charge/jail these war criminals (Bush/Blair/Sarkozy/Cameron, etc).
Russia must initiate action to get UN to investigate these illegal attacks (Iraq,Libya,Syria,etc) and the war crimes committed by these war criminals (Bush/Blair/Sarkozy/Cameron, etc).
Until these war criminals (Bush/Blair/Sarkozy/Cameron, etc) are charged/jailed for life, otherwise all these ugly truths must be told and re-told.
This post goes to show that the Russian propaganda machine is alive and well and still trying to destabilize the west. The 40 recommends show it to be a highly coordinated attempt. Russia is pretty complicit in Syria itself and has a far larger military contingent there than the US. They have also been known to threaten their supposed ally of the US with close flybys. One can debate the justification to go to war in Iraq but at least it was done with a legal declaration of war unlike Russia in the Ukraine and Georgia. In Libya it was the actions of long-serving M.Gaddafi that led to US led airstrikes protecting Libyans from attacks. That you can claim that Russia has the moral high ground in any of these situations is ludicrous in the extreme.
> the nihilist fury of ultra-militant Islam
A Jihadist is about as far from "nihilist" as one can get. In fact, they suffer from too much belief, channeled via an ideology that sanctions violence against those that believe too little.
What a bizarre interpretation of reality, ideology and intent.
Is the remainder of the article this poor? Finding such a fundamental error in the opening paragraph destroyed the will to read on.
It seems that the term Nihilism has been blurred to point where it means nothing.
Thank you for injecting wit into an otherwise tedious discussion.
You did not comprehend what I wrote.
Christianity went through a reformation. Islam has not.
Christianity did not go through a reformation. Part of it did, the rest (Catholicism and the Orthodox churches) did not.
What the article points to, and what the comments illustrate - and for that matter what technologies such as suggested by the Russian adverts on Facebook and Youtube, and by Cambridge Analytica, are beginning to reify - is that identity has become a battlespace. Since an informed citizenry is among the most basic assumptions behind democratic systems of various flavors, this is a challenge not just to existing Western governments, but to democracy as a viable governance system. It's fair to say that neither the US nor the EU is doing a very effective job of responding - indeed, it may be the case that the alt-right/alt-left/weaponized narrative phenomena are simply the emergent properties of a failing model of governance.
Informed citizenry is indeed the assumption behind democracy, but where is your proof that Cambridge Analytica, the Russians, et al, are engaged in some conspiracy to confuse the citizenry? Certainly efforts by Facebook and Twitter to promote antidotes to alleged fake news are in total shambles, as you would know if you followed the topic rather than mutter darkly about "weaponized narratives". I don't even know what you mean by that term, and doubt that you do.
As you are probably aware, "proof" is a characteristic of scientific discourse, not of a disinformation environment (and increasingly rare in public discourse about science, as far as that goes). Doubt is sensible, but can be manipulated; if you don't see Russian influence in the advertisements and discussions around the social media campaigns before, during, and after the elections, you have a different weight of evidence test than most people. As for "weaponized narrative," google it. It's there.
"if you don't see Russian influence in the advertisements and discussions around the social media campaigns before, during, and after the elections, you have a different weight of evidence test than most people."
So . . . the very LACK of evidence is what proves your point?
I like your line of thought. It supports my long-held theory that Abraham Lincoln and Geronimo were actually the same person. We do not, after all, have a picture of the two of them together!! What are the chances of THAT being a coincidence?--
Watch the skies . . . the Truth is out there!
"So . . . the very LACK of evidence is what proves your point?" Not what was said at all. The evidence has been proven by our own intelligence agencies. What was said that if you are too dim to recognize the evidence is out there, you haven't been paying attention and probably should get some information before you do comment. Even the comments section here are full of Russian propagandists like our Latvia is evil guy. Good luck with that Lincoln/Geronimo thing. I had the same feeling with Bruce Wayne and Batman.
I would point to an article in The Observer of Sunday 7 May 2017 by by Carole Cadwalladr:
The great British Brexit robbery: how our democracy was hijacked
Sample of Russian Spy Paranoia Central (courtesy FT blog) - watch the criteria, you might be next :)
"Jim Waterson ✔ @jimwaterson
This Twitter user was named as a Russian troll by ByLine who cited his "horrific use of English" and "pro-Russian posture". In reality he's just a Glaswegian security guard. http://www.scotsman.com/news/politics/i-m-not-a-russian-troll-i-m-a-secu... …
9:07 AM - Nov 15, 2017 "
Thank you, this is the closest link
You appear to be making the same mistake as poster Zappa above: "proof" is a mathematical concept, subject to the very strict rules of that discipline. In the sciences, "proof" is never used, theories are based on inference from repeatable experiment. The data in the article you cite at most indicate some partial evidence of psychological propaganda deployment. Hardly a new concept, not proof of anything, bordering on conspiracy theory. Even the author is not suggesting illegality, as the title would indicate.
You clearly have no idea what you are talking about, first by mentioning "proof" in the sciences, as opposed to mathematics, and second by exhibiting appalling naivete in suggesting a person you do not know should "google" the phrase "weaponized narrative". I have already run several simulations of Louvain algorithms on that very phrase, and find it overwhelmingly associated with extreme leftist nodes. Go ahead, it's easy to duplicate these results :)
"proof" is very much not part of scientific discourse or the scientific method. Scepticism is central to science. All scientific knowledge and explanations are tentative. (Indeed all knowledge and explanations are tentative.)
I have long regarded Pepe the Frog and the whole alt-right business as a joke. I have a hundred students and not one of the could tell Pepe the Frog from Kermit and his lament about how hard it is to be green.
But, there may be such a body of opinion. Check today's "Atlantic" for an article in which the author presumes that such a body of opinion exists (I remain skeptical.) IF it exists then he has a plausible explanation for why -- alienated young, white males have no place else to go.
A good rule in politics is "Never apologize, never explain." Rather than attempting to do the impossible -- reason with the Left -- the author suggests that these alienated whites are in the process of forming their own political movement --one that is misogynistic and hostile toward political correctness. As is their right.
The politically correct Left, in this interpretation, is Hegelian and its antithesis is in the process of formation. It has no intent on "making nice."
To repeat, I know of no one who is in the much-dreaded Al-right and don't believe such a thing exists outside the paranoia of the PC Crowd. But, it is easy to understand how it might come into existence.
The Atlantic article contains a very valid warning concerning the First Amendment:
".....The lawsuit is scheduled to enter the pretrial stage in December. It marks the first time a notorious internet troll has been sued for instigating a campaign of harassment and intimidation. It could force the courts to decide whether calling for a troll attack—Anglin’s admonition to “hit ’em up”—is protected speech. The risk, however, is that if Anglin prevails in court, sadistic trolls will be free to tear across the internet with even greater abandon.
For his part, Randazza argues that restricting Anglin’s trolling would set a dangerous precedent. Anglin “has every right to ask people to share their views, no matter how abhorrent those views are,....""
Given its new owners, the magazine is a sitting duck for damages for libel, should Anglin prevail in court.
The subject of the Atlantic cover story has already posted a response on his own website
I agree with you the whole thing is a joke, more like The Onion than some neo-totalitarian threat, as the Atlantic would have us believe. But that brings me back to the French professor in the article here, is the man seriously comparing a bunch of gamers who never killed or even harmed anybody with a group of terrorists who have killed thousands and tried to establish their own caliphate?
The only explanation I can come up with for professor Atran's weird equivalence between alt-right and al Qaeda is that Atran is a disciple of the late professor Derrida, who maintained words have no fixed meaning. Everything depends on context. Maybe the Derrida followers should stick to literary pursuits and stay away from political analysis.
Be charitable toward Professor Atran. He cannot help it.
He is French.
This guy posts you a link to an actual neo-nazi website (the name is inspired from "der sturmer", a ww2 nazi propaganda magazine), and you just shrug and agree with him? Holy f*ck. We knew you were far more to the right than you try to portray yourself on here, but this beats everything... immoral hypocrite.
How about "actual websites" that retail accounts of alien visitors?
You worry about these as well?
The Economist should employ some fact-checkers before promoting fact-free theories like those peddled by prof. Atran. In an article published by yet another leftist rag, the good professor claims that:
".....In Charlottesville the week before, the white supremacist attacker who killed civil rights activist Heather Heyer....."
Surely the coroner's report conclusively showing that Heather Hayer, an obese woman with a weak heart, died, on what was a very hot day, by a heart attack, with no sign of wounds by car impact, is relevant? Her mother admitted as much in an interview to NBC:
Drawing conclusions from third-hand talking points is unworthy of someone writing under the name "Erasmus".
Shrug, What triggered the heart attack?
Obesity and a weak heart.
Somehow, I can't imagine being run over by a car helped.
Funny the coroner wrote "no sign of wounds by car impact" in the autopsy report!
Found the video showing 8 (eight!) paramedics carrying Heyer after she suffered her heart attack. It's less than one minute:
It was 94 degrees in the shade at the time, she was standing in the sun, shouting slogans, these may also have been contributing factors.
Had she not been hit by the car, would she have had a heart attack? How obese was she?
In the description of the video Ecoute Sauvage linked;
"Heather Heyer's family returned to the site where Heyer was ran over by a car and killed during protests in Charlottesville, Virginia"
You tell me.
I don't know . . . how big, after all, is "stupid?"
Missing the point as usual. Here we are discussing what caused the heart attack instead of wondering why more people weren't killed by this snowflake whose feelings were hurt because people yelled at him for believing the white race is the master race.
This is a collage of several videos, most including Heather Heyer.
She seems to have weighed over 300lbs, and in addition to all the other risk factors, she was a chain smoker, all the pictures of her show her holding a pack of Newports. There is no blood on the street or on the stretcher, and the coroner couldn't possibly have missed wounds from a car accident, so the heart attack is conclusive cause of death. As to what caused it, the ambient heat, commotion, obesity, smoking, known heart problems, are enough. The driver of the car can't be convicted of murder (requires intent) or even manslaughter (his car didn't touch her) but possibly some other charge applies. However the video also shows the man was in genuine danger, with Antifa breaking his car windows with bats, so if he drove in a panic fearing for his life that would count as extenuating circumstance. At any rate he's in jail awaiting trial, so these questions will be settled in court.
There may be something much simpler involved here. I suggest that recent 'terrorist' attacks are primarily suicides and only secondarily mass murder. This puts them on a par with shootings in Las Vegas and in hundreds of other places annually. It also explains why 'terrorists' take such pains to be killed - such as wearing false suicide belts and running at armed police. Ideology's only contribution may be telling people this is OK with God, even though suicide is expressly forbidden. I note that the demographics are also similar.
Some very interesting comments but they all seem to miss an essential point. There is NO democracy in the US, only a lobbyocrazy whose purpose it is to shift massive amounts of wealth from the lower and middle classes to the top one percent who can legally bribe the Congress to do their bidding.
Now, we have arrived at the point where three individuals possess more than 50% of all the wealth in the country. And sadly, we are only getting started. With an AI robot with 10,000 times the computing power of humans, will the wealth continue to rise to the top Or fall to the bottom? The outcome is fairly predictable. Much of the economic disenfranchisement that many people feel drives their fanaticism, on the left and on the right. They each has their own bogie man but the hatred generated continues to polarize each to the other. Minus a sea change in this situation, it will only get worse. A sense of powerlessness all to frequently produces psychosis.
What is fool is this Atran. There is no meaningful democracy in places like the EU. Brussels and media and political manipulation by the wealthy see to that. Die? For what?
Does the author believe that it is solely a response for self-glory? Would he consider that people have lost a sense of belonging in a homogeneous group to which they identify? In so doing, many people have lost the ability to control their lives and they have difficulty providing the supporting structures required, upon which to build their lives. It is called marginalisation and membership of such groups provides an identity, provides collegiality and a belief system which appeals to their uneducated self and there prejudices. Much of the left wing or those who call themselves democrats are no different. Their ideology is just two sides of the same coin. It creates radicalisation, not inclusivity.
Blaming these foot soldiers is to direct anger at the result. The cause must be dealt with and that is the job of politicians and leaders of society. However, their quality of strategic thought, their ability to mobilise a population without political rhetoric is in doubt.
One wonders whether Brexit, as it hands power back to the people, will be an unforeseen consequence, of tackling such marginalisation.
What a great way to rationalize racism
Continue to let your ignorance shine through! It is quite obvious that you have no idea as to critical assessment from any perspective. You must be American?
So I'm ignorant while you espouse a worldview that people are sad because people who are different from them want to live in their communities. I don't know how you can be more blatantly racist than that. Racism is the height of ignorance. The idea that we don't want their kind here is an old idea and has always been wrong. I am an American. I am also a Christian who was told by my savior to treat those who were down on their luck as I would treat him. He also didn't put an except after he said to love thy neighbor. We can have a discussion on any number of opinions, but when you espouse that one race is better than another then there is no discussion. Its wrong and demonstrably wrong. Its an argument built on the ultimate in ignorance and delusional self importance.
It appears as if ignorance has firmly latched onto you by the short and curlies.
My suggestion is that you return to my post, read it, slowly and carefully, check the spelling to see that you understand each word. Take cognisance of each punctuation mark and sentence construction. Think about it all carefully and once you have undertaken this strenuous mental exercise, deciphering simple English language, please take a deep breath, hold it for 7 seconds and breathe out slowly, in a controlled fashion. Allow the brain to oxygenate, sweeping away the cobwebs and plaques. Re-read the primary article and ensure you understand or comprehend each word, phrase, punctuation mark and the meaning of life, which could be achieved by walking around the football field and thinking about yourself. Once that has been the focus of your existence for the next year, please reply to me again and apologise for believing that you see a racist under every leaf. Maybe it's a homophobe, a leftist, a misogynist, a communist, a moslem fundamental terrorist. Paranoid delusions are not a concrete reason for such replies but nothing that an anti-psychotic is not capable of relieving!
Once I return to North America next week, I will be sure to pray for you at my usual church attendance, at the following Sunday service and beg God's intervention, that he may heal you of your affliction and cleanse you of all evil.
Yet another glib "book report" from TE that masquerades as analysis. For most Americans, it will be cold day in hell before the scribbling of some European savant qualifies as knowledge of the American South -- the least hostile racial environment in the United States.
The whole essay is just one more "blame Whitey" screed. Where, after all, are all these thousands of neo-Nazi white supremacists? We need to create a new category: "Hallucinatory Reporting."
"In his view, both kinds of fanaticism reflect both the failure of the liberal democratic order to inspire anyone to defend it," Take out the world "liberal" from that sentence and one can imagine countless hundreds of millions who will defend "the democratic order." Some of those defenders, sadly enough, have long resided in American military cemeteries both at home and overseas. These are the "defenders" who are routinely insulted every Sunday by Colin Kaepernick and his ilk and, also, TE. (You may remember last month's article in which TE objected to the respect and admiration that Americans show toward their armed forces.)
Well, who would want to defend "the liberal democratic order" when:
* It cannot tell boys from girls.
* It clearly hates males.
* It especially hates white males.
* It idolizes those tranches of the general population that are the most crime-prone and ill-educated.
* It ignores the law and defends those who enter the USA illegally.
* It ignores the law with "sanctuary cities."
* It misuses and corrupts "higher education" to propagandize the young.
* It accuses anyone who thinks for themselves as "racist."
* It creates phony labels (a la the Bolsheviks) such as "white nationalists."
* It gleefully sends American jobs to Mexico via NAFTA.
* It is subservient to a sexually deviant Hollywood and its sexual desperadoes.
* It simply lies.
I would not lift a finger to save this "liberal democratic order." In the civil war that we all know is coming, whatever is the opposition to this "order" then three cheers and a tiger for that opposition! I suspect we would all be more free under Sharia and the imams than under the "liberal democratic order."
The historical "Erasmus" wrote "In Praise of Folly." The current TE "Erasmus" exemplifies what the real thing wrote about.
So that's clear. You will not defend your own country and you advocate violence to achieve your political objectives. Which makes you a criminal and (at least) an accessory to murder.
Precisely who is it you advocate killing?
Liberals have a creed that is based on arrogance (it is possible to say that all creeds, including Conservatism have arrogance in their mix). The Liberal arrogance is "I'm superior to you (Conservatives) because you're racists and I'm not." Liberals thereby embed racism in everything they talk about, even if the subject is as far removed from race as the Man in the Moon.
And, yes, Conservative Southerners are the least racist people in the USA. Which state has elected a Republican African American Senator? Why, it is South Carolina. Perhaps the Liberals are busy smearing Senator Tim Scott in their parlors; calling him "Uncle Tom, Oreo Cookie" and all the other slanders they hurl at Conservative African Americans like Clarence Thomas, Herman Cain, Thomas Sowell, and Walter Williams.
1. I do not advocate violence and your comment is a lie.
2. No -- I would not defend the USA because in its current state it is not worth defending.
"* It cannot tell boys from girls."
We can tell the difference. We also know that not all boys like girls and not all girls like boys.
"* It clearly hates males."
Wanting equal opportunity for females is not hating males.
"* It especially hates white males."
That's why Obama was going to set up the FEMA camps. BTW you forgot Christian.
"* It idolizes those tranches of the general population that are the most crime-prone and ill-educated."
Idolize, no the word is empathize for a people who again and again are left behind by a revolving system that leaves them ill-educated and with no hope turn to crime. Aren't these the same people Jesus called the least of us and asked us to treat them as you would treat him?
"* It ignores the law and defends those who enter the USA illegally."
Again its called empathy. As a Christian I feel the need to feel empathy for people who are trying to escape poverty and violence. Its that old love thy neighbor thing. Plus God commanded us to treat sojourners well as the children of Israel were once sojourners.
" * It ignores the law with "sanctuary cities."
Sanctuary cities are created in mind that with their limited police resources that cities do not take it upon themselves to uphold federal laws. If immigrants are otherwise not breaking the law they are not going to be sought out.
"* It misuses and corrupts "higher education" to propagandize the young."
Not that I agree with your premise but there are plenty of right wing universities out there, plus Fox News which a propaganda arm of the Republican party for the older generation. Plus you have The Blaze, Breitbart, InfoWars and any number of media outlets that create conspiracy theories like stating the Las Vegas attacks were staged to promote gun contro.
"* It accuses anyone who thinks for themselves as 'racist.'"
Thinking that your race is better than any other race is not thinking for yourself, its racist. Its absolutely wrong and there is no defense or discussion that we need to have to debate that issue.
"* It creates phony labels (a la the Bolsheviks) such as 'white nationalists.'"
Ronald Reagan used the label liberal to make his America hate the other part. Some right wing people have been known to sling around the term socialists or even communists to describe liberals. I've not heard white nationalists. I've have heard alt-right used to soften the term white supremacists or neo-nazi.
"* It gleefully sends American jobs to Mexico via NAFTA."
George HW Bush negotiated NAFTA.
"* It is subservient to a sexually deviant Hollywood and its sexual desperadoes."
The New York Times was the source of the Weinstein story. You're all to happy to talk about Hollywood when its James Woods. You also elected a reality star who is himself a sexual predator.
"* It simply lies."
Fake news is what got Trump elected. He has been caught in dozens of bold faced lies which are on tape and he still denies. Fake news to him is any negative story about him.
Remember "Casablanca" and rounding up "the usual suspects?
Well, you have round-up the usual cliches.
Breaking the law is "empathy" (how nice for you!) and people are "ill-educated and without hope turn to crime?" And why are they "ill-educated?" And is crime the inevitable result of being black and not finishing a free public education? With friends like you, African-Americans don't need enemies.
I have, during campaign season, been pestered by robo-calls that were more thought-provoking and original than your stale rehashing of weary conventional wisdom.
Um, it does appear you are advocating violence. Let me remind everyone here what you posted: " I would not lift a finger to save this "liberal democratic order." In the civil war that we all know is coming, whatever is the opposition to this "order" then three cheers and a tiger for that opposition! "
Giving three cheers and a tiger is violence?
I guess you've never been to an Army/Navy game.
Or, anywhere else.
You are the worst kind of troll. You pick apart the smallest part of an argument by twisting words and believe that you in your cleverness have won. I took on every one of your points in your manifesto and the only thing you can do is score cheap points. Breaking the law is not empathy. Empathy is feeling sympathy for people who are trying to escape poverty and violence. I can understand they had the choice of breaking the law or dying. You might want to try empathy, its what both Jesus and God asked us to have in regard to immigrants.
Nowhere did I say that crime is the inevitable result of being black and not finishing a free public education. Since you can't understand the correlation between poverty and crime I can't really help you. If you really believe that the schools are equal to the opportunities available to others and can't understand why there is a circle of poverty, then you aren't really the expert you make yourself out to be. You mock what others are trying to do for blacks without offering any solutions of your own.
Now what are ranting on about?
An absolutely terrible analysis, this Atran-"study" - typical academic sophistry! And biased to the nth degree! First, no mention at all of LEFT-WING fanaticism which dominates every US and UK campus almost 100%, and whose violent attacks in Europe outnumber the Right-Wing by 5 to 1, acc. to EU statistics! And now Jihadism: Over 31,000 deadly attacks the world over since the year 2000, compared to which those of the Right are incrediby minuscule. Can anyone even remember a recent bomb, knife or car attcack in the UK that was definably "Right-Wing"? And finally, Right-wingers come and go, whereas Islamic Jihad has been around and active for 1400 years! How can anyone in his right mind even compare these two?
Islam has been around for 1400 years, but today's radical Islamism is quite novel. A generation ago the defining political movements in the Islamic world were secular and nationalistic, including the violent ones like the PLO. That began to change with the revolution in Iran, but particularly with the resistance to the USSR in Afghanistan, which began as a nationalistic resistance, but developed into a religious Jihad, and spread throughout the Islamic world when the fighters attracted to a nationalistic fight returned home as Jihadis. This religious movement has come about as a result of decades of poor governance in post-colonial Arab countries. Islamism is the label put on it in the Arab world, but the same angry young men can be found anywhere there is dissatisfaction with economic change, economic failure, and rapidly changing societies.
I assume the reason why Scott Atran, as summarized by Erasmus, omits to mention “LEFT-WING fanaticism” is that it is less comparable to Islamic jihadism than Neo-Nazism and white supremacy are. Left-wing university students (to which you refer) don’t believe in an inevitable apocalyptic all-encompassing showdown the arrival of which can be hastened by challenging the liberal democratic order. And although many of them stridently oppose inviting right-wing ideologues (as they characterize them) to give speeches on campus, it would be ludicrous to suggest that they are against the liberal democratic order as a whole. They just don’t want these so-called “plutocrats” or “fascists” to be given a forum at their university (“Don’t invite them to shit where we live”). Misguided and self-sabotaging as that attitude is, it’s a long way from advocating the revocation of these prospective speakers’ right to free speech or the elimination of elections, the equal protection of the laws, and other features of liberal democracy. “The liberal democratic order” is not, for left-leaning university students, a pejorative term; but it definitely is for Islamic jihadists and Neo-Nazis, and I bet it is for white supremacists, too.
Your other criticism of the article (or perhaps of Atran as summarized by the article) is that, recently, Islamic jihadism has been more violent than white supremacy or Neo-Nazism. So what, though? Atran’s argument is that Islamic jihadism and white supremacy/Neo-Nazism are comparable in that both arise from (1) the failure of the liberal democratic order to inspire passionate allegiance and (2) the insidious attraction of a tribal ideology that contemplates an apocalyptic challenge to the liberal democratic order. This seems to me a fair, insightful comparison. That Islamic jihadism has been, as of late, more violent than white supremacy/Neo-Nazism does not logically invalidate that comparison as far as it goes. Valid comparisons can be made between non-identical things.
"In his view, both kinds of fanaticism reflect both the failure of the liberal democratic order to inspire anyone to defend it, and the insidious attractiveness of ideologies which challenge that order.'
I, for one, am not prepared to defend it.
Others may do so if they wish but I think such a thing is folly.
What is there worth defending in a race-hustling "liberal democracy" that festers on political correctness.
What is there worth defending in a "liberal democracy" that cheers-on a stooge like Caepernik while U.S. forces are in the field.
Perhaps it is time that imams took over. That would put "paid" to the entire rotten structure of feminism and official contempt ("Basket of deplorable") of whites and males.
"Liberal" democracy has no defenders for a very good reason . . . it isn't worth defending.
Let it die and then go on from there.
I didn't think you were a Russian troll but you write so much like one that I'm no longer sure. Their purpose, as I'm sure you know, is to sow discord and dissatisfaction in a society which is far more successful than their own, thus causing fraction and discord which makes their poor outlook look the same as everyone else's. Welcome to the crappy World of Cambridge Analytica.
Consider this. You promote yourself ad living in the USA. Very well, let's take you at your word. Where would you prefer to live right now? The USA? Russia? China? A western European country? A Mediterranean country? Would you be prepared to fight for your preferred homeland if it was threatened, assuming you aren't too old and irresponsible? If not do you think you are entitled to live in any of these countries if you aren't prepared to fight for your entitlement? You may have rights but too often you have to fight for them to actually benefit from them.
"First, no mention at all of LEFT-WING fanaticism which dominates every US and UK campus almost 100%, ..."
I used to hear this sort of rubbish all the time when I was a student in the 1970s and 80s. It was crap then and crap now.
So precisely what is your preferred alternative to "liberal democracy"?
Democracy -- without the diseased strain of "liberal."
So . . . in the forty years since you were a student, nothing has changed?
Tell me . . . do you believe that the rest of us still use black Bakelite telephones with wires leading into the wall and then up onto a series of poles to make phone calls?
I agree with your insight, Tom Meadowcroft.
I think what you observe is most true to facts. ".... the same angry young men can be found anywhere there is dissatisfaction with economic change, economic failure, and rapidly changing societies."
Whatever Religion label they slab on the anger has got nothing to do with the Religion itself. You'll find the same thing in ALL religions (no need to name each one specifically, suffice it to say there are 10 of them - the major Religions in world civilization - Huston Smith, MIT theologian).
I also would note the anger is not confined to young men. I think the anger is across age democgraphic. In point of fact, as far as the comparison between Islam and Christianity, in Islam the Jihadis are indeed mostly young men. In Chriatianity, I think it is mostly old men, much much older men, who are disgrauntled with social change (they can't keep up with it), who want to keep condoms away (even as prophylactic against venereal diseases), forbid dissenting opinions from their own, by calling the bearers of those opinion the nastiest of names (even as they would avow in the most self-righteous fashion the First Amendment is a right for ALL), and keep arguing who is to use which public toilet when unisex will solve the problem once and for all in one day, etc. etc. They also seem particularly invested in policing what other people do in the privacy of their own bedrooms.
I think the fight is all about POWER. Both Jihadists and Mean Nasty Christians (NOT all Christians are like that!) share the same craze about POWER. They also both need some convenient "thing" or people or persons to trample on - be the target for trampling a person or group of the wrong color, the wrong faith, the wrong gender, the wrong social class (they seem to, at least on TE community boards, love to hate anyone EITHER richer than they OR poorer than they <<-- this is the strangest bit of their psychology, better educated than they, etc.etc.etc.).
In other words, anything can trigger their wrath. Their clamor is for a Safe Place to do their in-amelioratable wrath.
They seem also to be temperamentally predisposed to VIOLENCE (in cyberspace, this violence manifests in the WORDS they speak, obviously ACT - the kind that makes a bullet hole is not possible in cyberspace), and seem not be able to pass a day without blaming someone and something for the dissatisfaction that must fill their lives (who can be continuously angry 24/7/365?!!) due to, as you put it, economic change, economic failure and a rapdily changing society. In short, there will ALWAYS be someone, something, they can dump all the blame on, just so they can after a fashion maintain their precarious mental equilibrium. Not a good sight. When a society has too many of this element in its citizenry, it is a sick society.
Liberalism is at the heart of democracy, which itself is a liberal, progressive, concept. If the liberals are not allowed a say in the democratic process, the system isn't democratic.
Anyway, now you have made it clear that you believe no one has valid opinions if they are liberal, I retain the view that you are in favour of settling political conflict using violence rather than the ballot box and debate..
Yer, very droll.
I did not say that liberals are should not be allowed a say in the democratic process.
I simply intimated that it is a pity that anyone listens to them.
Liberals DO, on occasion, have "valid principles." They are just not very important.
I don't advocate either violence or nonsense. The first principle keeps me out of jail and the second principle keeps me out of nonsense.
"Liberals DO, on occasion, have "valid principles."
Fair enough question -- I'd prefer to live in a pleasant place like Costa Rica -- and still may.
Norway, also, would be nice.
Those who fight for their homelands will, within a few decades, be ridiculed as fools and treated with contempt by the posterity whose lives they made possible. Every generation needs to murder the memory of the previous generation. It is a rite of passage.
NO ONE has rights! They simply don't' exist -- unless you can provide me with a local habitation and a name. We conjure "rights" out of the air to justify what we want to have and what we don't want the other fellow to have. If there is a superintending Deity that we must revere then, yes, there ARE such things as "rights." If there is no such Deity and we live in a meaningless universe then "rights" are as meaningless as anything else. That includes the "right" to racial, ethnic or sexual "equality." In a dead material universe, such "rights" are simply conceits.
I see no reason whatever to defend the "rights" I have. There are plenty of others will do so on my behalf and their thanks will consist of being portrayed as evil by future scribblers.
General Custer was defending the "rights" of settlers . . . what do we think of him now? The men who piloted the "Enola Gay" did so to preserve democratic "rights." Pick up any recent history book and see how they are treated.
You think I am a Russian troll (that is rich -- if you only knew!) because I dissent from the usual bullshit that seems to sustain so many of you. I don't care if I am liked -- it matters more to me whether I like others. I don't' care if I am not respected by the likes of you -- decades ago I decided that whether I respected someone else was far more important.
Whether it is you, Evidence Matters, Captain Ron or that queen of insipidness --I think you know who I mean -- not one of you thinks outside the liberal box.
"The Last Hurrah" features a political creature known simply to the readers as "Ditto."
You remind me of him.
You and I both know what your previous version of your reply looked like. This one is fair(-ish) that one, not. However you have done me a favour. For some reason I cannot see pages later than page 1 of comments. Your reply finally allowed me to do so, as TE's report-back mechanism takes you directly to the place a reply is made.
However I I suspect that you comprehensively missed the point, both then and now. I would agree that 'rights' are a human construct, but they are also a convenient shortcut for red-lines for civilised living. And for about 95% of the time humanity, in the sense of what one might call an anatomically modern version, has not lived in a civilised manner. We are optimised for the paleolithic, genetically and anatomically speaking, not the recent fad for staying in one place in made-up structures, tending crops and animals for food. And in those days tribes fought each other for dominance of the land pretty much all the time. My point was, and is, that those tribal instincts persist to the present day. The article for which this is a thread supported that in a more stripped-down way.
One of the most important of these primitive issues was fighting for the territory you occupied. If you lost it your tribe would probably perish in short order, so having prototribalism wired into your brain wold be a survival factor. That has carried forward to the present day in the reverence in which those who have volunteered for military service are held. While those who actually undergo military service might do so for a variety of reasons, the fact is that they could be called, without option to defer, to lay their lives on the line in a real shooting war. People so exposed, especially in hunter-gatherer times, were revered by the tribe for their preparedness to lay their lives on the line. They had gained moral authority by that choice.
And that was my point. People,are too prepared to poor-mouth their own society without thinking about what would happen if that society was existentially challenged. I did not BTW actually say you were a Russian troll, just that you were behaving like one, their motivation being to sow division and lack of support for the society you find yourself in. The point there (why do I need to to explain this?) is that their motivation and, apparently, yours, looked the same. The question then was whether you aligned yourself with their wider motivation, or not. I don't actually think you've answered that.
Instead, even here, you cannot resist the ad hominem argument. You could accuse me of the same, but my justification is that I was trying to show up the inconsistency of your position, something you tend to resist or ignore. I can see no such justification in your version. And you don't have a monopoly on the truth.
"One of the most important of these primitive issues was fighting for the territory you occupy."
I must accept that -- but, there is more to it. If the Cheyenne fight to keep whites out of Colorado than that is instinct and, indeed, "paleolithic" and all together understandable. But, if native-born Americans fight to keep illegal aliens out of OUR country then that -- according to liberals -- is racism. Who is correct?
During 1914-1918, Russians, Brits, French, Germans, Austrians and Yanks were willing to die for their country. Now, historians insist, for the most part, that the conflict was meaningless and tut-tut with academic condescension over those fools who gave their lives for, respectively, Russia, England, Germany, Austria-Hungary and the USA. Now, perhaps the historians are wrong -- but you'll never know it. Not with the current PC crowd.
When the men came home in '46 we were in awe of them. One of my uncles survived a kamikaze crash off Okinawa, a second uncle was nearly killed at Tarawa and yet a third uncle operated behind Japanese lines in China. My generation was intensely patriotic -- and we were wrong.
In, say, 1943, the USA was ninety percent white and immigrant families, such as my own, had it hard, barely survived the Depression, and then gave years of their lives to the war. But, weren't they all guilty of "white privilege" and shouldn't we now despise them? That seems to be the current diktat from the Left and I wish I had been around in '41 to say to my relations, "Don't bother -- the Future will hate you for risking your lives for democracy."
As for "sowing division," just what have phony organizations like Black Lives Matter done for some years now? What did Roe v. Wade do -- unite our nation into one big, happy family. And, when a serious presidential candidate refers to one-quarter of the population as "Deploreables," why on earth would those so denominated want to risk their lives for a nation that deplores them?
There is, I believe, no inconsistency in my position. The fighting men I knew when they were still in their twenties were just that -- men. You know -- the same "gender" that is now accused of every crime under the sun. They were Christians and Christians are now hated unless, of course, they are little more than adjuncts of the Democratic Party. And, they were white . . . and nearly all Americans were at that time.
We should not, also, forget the 55,000 Americans who died for nothing in Vietnam or the million+ Vietnamese who died to send us back home -- where we belonged. As for the 2003 Iraq War, we were the aggressors and that is that.
MLK's dream is dead. We are now a nation of race-hustlers. We live amid a welter of pornography and at the same time insist we are upset by "sexual harassment" (ThingkHarvey Weinstein.) We insist that we honor women but have destroyed the family structure that sustained mothers and replaced much of it with a contemptuous toss of the dole. Our political language, especially from the Left, has become vicious and corroding and, as a result, more and more Americans despise our government institutions.
We had the greatest country in the world, one that was making enormous progress toward racial peace (to cite one example) and we trashed it and now it is not worth a damn. Defend it, and, you can bank on it --you'll be regarded in a few years as a fool and a villain.
I remember George Carlin, a "comedian" who liked to get a big laugh by referring to "military intelligence" as an oxymoron. He did not, of course, risk his life at Tarawa. Just a snarky, arrogant, liberal big-mouth. (Think Steven Colbert today.)
Now that love of country is considered a conservative abnormality, young men have seen through the scam and refuse to wear the uniform. In fact, last week the NYT reported that the Army is reducing its standards for enlistment to near-idiot levels. Young males, especially those who are white, think it foolish to defend America. Young men, especially whites, are correct in their assessment.
Nope -- I'm ready for the imams. They, at least, stand for something.
You should really listen to yourself sometimes. He you are wishing for a return to an America that never was. By using your own arguments you prove that. Everything is us versus them in your world. You can't even recognize that the people you demonize might have more in common with you than you think. George Carlin was just a snarky, arrogant, liberal big-mouth who was speaking out against those who kept telling us that victory in Vietnam was just around the corner if only we had more troops. You yourself agree we shouldn't have been there. You talk about pornography and sexual harassment while being oblivious to the fact that both are symptoms of a society that represses sexuality as something dirty. Women haven't destroyed the family structure. The economics that one income can no longer support a household have. You ignore that the military that is having trouble recruiting now has 40% of its recruits being black. Most of these events you are speaking out against were backed by conservatives. I get the feeling that if you were living in those old days that you seem to revere you'd just find somebody else to hate.
"both are symptoms of a society that represses sexuality as something dirty. "
At which point, the most intelligent response is (and I crib from a Brit) to hold one's sides and roll about the carpet in hysterical laughter!
Who are the sexually repressed: Bill Clinton, Al Franken, Harvey Weinstein, John Conyers (America's own Robert Mugabe), Charlie Rose . . . etc., etc.? Haven't liberals had their panties in a bunch now for some time because not enough men ARE "sexually repressed?" Are the Washington staff females complaining that the cavorting senators and representatives are too diffident in matters of sex and not the fun they used to be?
If anyone should "listen to themselves sometimes," it sure as hell isn't me!
The economics of one income can no longer support a household." Well, no . . . not if having the latest electronic gadget and a sense of wild entitlement is what qualifies as a "household."
Gotta run . . . it's almost time for Charlie Rose (the poor man needs to loosen up. Holding it all in simply is not healthy!)
Fukuyama's book was entitled "The End of History and the Last Man". The latter half of the book was much more downbeat about the future, and spoke to the disillusion and malaise which would likely result from the end of the clash of ideologies of the 20th century.
"Age of Anger" by Mishra from early this year discussed in depth how every civilization that has gone through dramatic economic and technological change, starting with the Renaissance but certainly since the French Revolution, has generated angry young men who have reacted violently to the changes in their society. This anger and violence has and continues to take many forms. It is important to realize that militant Islam is one of many branches of the same phenomenon. Most of the examples are not in Islamic countries, although quite a few of these movements use religion as basis.
Tom M again,
I haven't read Age of Anger by Mishra. I came across a review of it somewhere when it first came out.
Again, I think religion is an "excuse" , a cloak to hide behind, to cover up, to justify, to rationalize, to sanctify, acts of violence done by one human being to another human being.
You see this kind of violence in Islam, Hinduism, Christianity, Eastern Orthodox, Vatican Roman, Buddhism... you name it. Any time someone tells you their "God" is better than your "God", and they in fact are Deputized God , that they have a direct Wifi line to "God", they are up to no good.
"For the love of Allah, I kill you" is no different from "For the love of God, I declare you an inferior person, to be abused and bullied about as I please". BOTH are exactly the same thing on a qualitative measure. Both are crimes against humanity. Although a 60-second beheading kill is in fact more merciful than death by a thousand cuts. The mentality of HATE inherent in BOTH is identical, even as the methodology of transgression and violation is externally different.
I have many many friends, some of whom very close friends, who are Christians - Catholic and Protestant both. NONE OF THEM are like the self-claimed "Christians" I have encountered on TE community boards. NONE.
Any concept can be misused when taken to the extreme, religion, patriotism, commercialism. That should be more a reflection on those persons instead of the religion or other ideas they claim to follow. Christianity doesn't teach to treat others as inferior, quite the opposite. It teaches to love thy neighbor as you love thyself and judge not lest ye be judged. Nor does Islam ask one to kill in the name of Allah. People forget that both Islam and Christianity are offshoots of Judaism so whether you are praying to Jesus (Son of God), Allah or Yawe, its all the same entity, just a different point of view.
coworker once said humans are not rational beings but rationalizing beings.
Not sure if its his or not.
Sure. We all rationalize. We resort to it to explain thoughts and feelings, attitudes and motives otherwise unacceptable to the super-ego (this is the original Freudian - Sigmund and daughter Anna - concept of the term).
I suppose only "God" does not need to explain anything, for its is NOT Man. Hence if a person believes he is "GOD", not he believes in "GOD", he doesn't need to explain anything. Anything he does is acceptable.
[Above is 10,000 pages of treatises on Freudian, Neo-Freudian and Kleinian theories condensed. Don't take it too seriously, or you will turn into a pale, dandruffed bookworm. :) ]
Thanks. I knew that.
I think when people act out in violence, seeking to destruct others and/or self, a lot in the inner psyche had taken root a long time ago. Violence is the tip of the iceberg.
Mark a qualitative v. quantitative differentiation in acts. Not all violent acts come from the same tree.
I speak densely here, I think teacup above and you could follow the thought.
The author does not address what an acceptable religion should reflect as its values and goals.
Christianity went through a reformation. Islam has not.
Defending your person, your family, your country from attack and invasion from those forcing a violent, terrorist, genocidal ideology on western civilization...is ...not ... islamophobia ....or racist. ....It is just common sense.
The West does NOT need to allow thousands of backward, 7th century, unvetted and violent muslim savages into our countries that have 'enshrined' sexual slavery, rape, forced conversion, murder and genocide in their FAKE religion!
Define an 'acceptable religion'? Do I go along to my local belief-system supermarket and choose the one that looks the fruitiest?
You haven't read the bible. It has all of those things. Rationalizing judging an entire religion based on the actions of a few is not common sense. The history of Christianity is not exactly clean either lest you forget the Crusades, the Inquisition, the KKK and the Holocaust.
And present day Extreme Far Right White Supremacists. For example - and this ain't no fake news - Charlottesville, SC, some of whom IN FACT carried the Swastka sign. Please refer my reply posts above to Tom Meadowcraft if you have a few minutes.
It is interesting how some of these Extreme Far Right White Supremacists deny Charlottsville ever happened, and deny the continuing existence of KKK in America, though far dwindled in number.
What might be the reason for their denial? I think this is a legitimate Q. But of course if you confront them, they will change the subject and play moron (which they are NOT, they only pretend so they can evade - their well-practiced MO - folks with no spine)
I will not debate that crimes have been done in the name of religion. That doesn't make that religion evil, only prove that some within it are misguided. What about those who use their religion to help their fellow man like Mother Theresa? A vast majority of people don't use their religion to promote violence. As usual painting with such a broad brush covers some things that shouldn't be. There are good religious people just as there are some who are not. The same can be said of non-religious people.
Oh great Christian person living in the name of its founder, for whom will you cast the first stone of savage? Which one have you talked to?
Hate and intolerance, frustration with governments offering nothing but misery for joining a cause of world class ignorance......The west is still making major gains, terrorism is a drag but not the kind that is going to stop the west from devising a better way to stomp the hell out of terrorist and put a foot on the necks of those who support them..it is now a crusade on behalf of the west, slow to come, long in scope but the west is realizing these vermin are not going to stop until you take away their fallacious cause...killing for the cult of a phony religion is going to sour, it's just a matter of time...
'...surveys suggest that very few people, these days, feel inclined to give up their lives for democracy.'
That's probably because people see no serious threat to democracy or capitalism. And I think they're right. Let's keep in mind that violent jihadists and far-right nationalists form absolutely miniscule minorities, and they are attempting to swim against immense and unstoppable historical currents. The liberal free-market democracies have so outperformed any alternative form of government or economy in making good lives for their citizens, that the others aren't even close. The jihadis and nationalists perform their atrocities because that's about the only way they can make an impression.
"That's probably because people see no serious threat to democracy or capitalism. And I think they're right."
That is exactly what I thought after reading the article, and I had to read all the comments following yours (starting with the most recent) to, finally!, find that I was not the only one to think that way. Thanks for saying it.
Yeah, nationalism and religion are much and such. Junk food for the brain consumed all to readily by the gullible. Unfortunately such in group tribal identification is hard wired into our brains. In Chimapanzees, the males of the group will pretty much murder on spot any male who is not not a group member they come across. Muslim fundamentalists and the far right haven't advanced much beyond this knuckle walking stage of development of hostility to outsiders.
"Unfortunately such in group tribal identification is hard wired into our brains. "
I'm not convinced that nationalism or religion are hardwired into the brain. I've never found any religion to be at all convincing and, indeed, it is religious believers who have put me off religion (repeatedly). Nor am I a nationalist, for much the same reasoning.
The more dexterous among them post on the Internet, too!
Listen who is talking!