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July 09, 2014

Comments

Jacob

It's funny how so many far-left posers get a hard-on for violence and smashing stuff.

David

It’s funny how so many far-left posers get a hard-on for violence and smashing stuff.

There is, I think, an inordinate fixation with destruction and physical dominance among such people. It crops up rather a lot and a little too readily, suspiciously so. At the time, many self-styled “anti-cuts activists” were practically exulting at the sight of other people’s homes and businesses being smashed, looted and burned to the ground – among them, small ethnic restaurants and the evil conglomerate Mothercare. Some, like the “activist,” chronic liar and Independent contributor Jody McIntyre, were excitedly urging more acts of vandalism, robbery and arson.

All of which was to be inflicted on other people.

And this sociopathic wanker was, at various times, a darling protégé of not only the Independent but also the Guardian and the New Statesman. Three for three.

Anon

'For it is a hard matter for men, who do all think highly of their own wits, when they have also acquired the learning of the university, to be persuaded that they want any ability requisite for the government of a commonwealth, especially having read the glorious histories and the sententious politics of the ancient popular governments of the Greeks and Romans, amongst whom kings were hated and branded with the name of tyrants, and popular government (though no tyrant was ever so cruel as a popular assembly) passed by the name of liberty.'

Thomas Hobbes

Anna

The Dalrymple link is down. I think you've crashed the New English Review website.

rjmadden

This “conspicuous forgiveness,” a kind of vicarious tolerance,

Forgiving criminals when you're not their victim sounds a bit presumptuous.

Watcher In The Dark

Forgiving, like giving, on behalf of others at no cost to oneself is so much easier when you are gifted with socialism.

DH

The growth of the intellectual class is not a response to consumer demand, but to the expansion of higher education.

Which is why so many of them end up in the public sector. Where else for graduates of go-to-university-for-the-sake-of-it degrees but to join the growing ranks of Behavioural Change Managers, Real Nappy Co-ordinators, Transformational Change Officers and Diversity Outreach Wardens?

This is the root of their anger - they cannot reconcile the fact that they spent three years or more gaining a qualification in media studies with the abrupt realisation that it is considered completely useless by any private business with a shred of common sense.

But, now too saddled with debt and a sense of intellectual superiority, our graduate cannot admit to themselves that they've been conned, and will harbour a life-long resentment of the private sector for valuing the skills of the Sun reading joiner across the road above their understanding of dialectical materialism and Noam Chomsky.

DH

Apologies for the italics. I attempted IT skills beyond my capabilities.

David

Forgiving criminals when you’re not their victim sounds a bit presumptuous.

It would be unkind to wish on such people a taste of the thuggery they excuse in others, but still, you can’t help but wonder how their pretensions would hold up with themselves on the receiving end. Having been dragged from their vehicles and then mugged and beaten, would they still construe their assailants as righteously “protesting against entitlement” and “social injustice,” or would they register the rather pronounced sense of entitlement of the people who’d just robbed them and given them a kicking?

As I’ve mentioned before, years ago I worked at a large recording studio, often through the night. The studio was in a converted factory in a fairly rough part of town. Every so often a local gang of youths would try to break in after dark when the offices in the building had closed, presumably unaware that we were still working inside. Their attempts to break in weren’t successful, but it’s not pleasant to hear the hammering of half a dozen youths armed with crowbars and knives. We once saw the same gang from an office window. The youngest members – aged 10 or 12 or so – rode bikes and scouted the area for potential witnesses before giving the all clear. Then the older members, in their late teens and early twenties, would attempt a spot of burglary. The fact that they carried knives and other weapons did not bode well for those of us on the other side of the steel door they were trying to prise open.

So far as I could make out, the people trying to rob us weren’t inflamed by a concern for social fairness or some lofty principle. They were, however, organised and determined predators.

It’s also interesting that protestations like those of Mr Miéville are generally presented as compassionate, as ostentatious displays of personal virtue. And yet it’s often hard to discern much, if any, compassion for the victims of the predators that Mr Miéville and his peers wish to excuse. As Dalrymple said elsewhere:

Miéville’s commentary… demonstrates an ability to avoid social reality common in a certain kind of educated fool… One cannot say often enough that the victims of crime are, like the perpetrators, more likely to be poor than rich. For example, single-parent households in Britain have a more than one-in-20 chance of being burgled in any given year; and since most burglars are recidivists, indeed multiply so, it follows that the class of victim is much larger than the class of perpetrator. Leniency toward criminals is not therefore a form of sympathy for the poor, but a failure to take either their lives or their property seriously.

I suppose the actual victims, the ones whose lives and property are implicitly dismissed as unimportant, are just props and set dressing for Mr Miéville’s own Marxoid drama.

David

Apologies for the italics. I attempted IT skills beyond my capabilities.

[ Fixes avalanche of italics. Mutters under breath. ]

R. Sherman

It's amazing that these people believe that they can discharge their individual moral duties by demanding that others pay the bill. In my Bible, Christ tells me to feed the poor, not to force the grocer down the street to hand out his food for free. But so it is with the Left. For all their preening, they never seem compelled to do anything themselves.

The Phantom

I recall at this time the old saying: "There is no hawk so fierce as a liberal who's been mugged."

Liberals are great at two things, forgiving trespasses against other people, and spending other people's money. For anything else you really need a Christian conservative.

Forgiveness and Tolerance are both poses of the Left, mere tactics that they trot out on occasion to either gull or brow beat people who actually -are- tolerant and forgiving. Leftists in my experience tend to be bigoted, grudge holding revenge seekers.

See "Lying Jackal" for reference.

LM

So far as I could make out, the people trying to rob us weren’t inflamed by a concern for social fairness or some lofty principle. They were, however, organised and determined predators.

That.

*hits tip jar*

Jeff Wood

"I recall at this time the old saying: "There is no hawk so fierce as a liberal who's been mugged.""

True enough, my dear Phantom. I managed to stay something of a liberal for some time, despite experience doing its best to teach me the error of my ways. I recall among other instances turning out late one night to help rescue fellow students being attacked by ferals in Edinburgh's Meadows.

But later, when I was husband and young father, I had a bit of a problem with a goblin, perhaps in his early twenties. I had boxed - not well - at school, so simply amused myself with him for a while, waiting for the fellow to sober a bit. He reached into his jacket and began to pull out a blade. When he woke later, I doubt if he had the faintest idea what I did to him then, despite the pain he must have felt.

It was after, when I reflected that I was, after all not bullet-, bomb- or knife-proof, that I decided it was time to really begin discriminating among people; between Them and Us; and up with Us and to the Devil with Them.

I had already spotted the hero-worship that leftists feel for violent criminals, and including leftists with Them came easy.

David

Cheers, LM.

But it’s interesting to think of any personal experience you might have as a victim of crime, or a witness to such, and then mentally contrast it with the blathering of people like China Miéville or Nina Power or Laurie Penny. The mental comparison – of Guardianista excuses and actual criminality - is almost funny, in a twisted sort of way.

Or if your home, or the home of an elderly relative, has ever been violated and robbed, picture the grinning face of Guardian favourite Clive Stafford Smith, who tells us, confidently, that crimes like burglary are undeserving of prison sentences and are “really quite inconsequential.” In his mind, such things have “zero” emotional impact on the victim, even if it happens, as it often does, over and over again. Only a bourgeois rube would be upset by a little thing like that.

Mr Stafford Smith and his fawning interviewer, the ludicrous Decca Aitkenhead, are both well-heeled middle-class lefties who claim to feel sympathy with working-class criminals - often habitual criminals who prey on their neighbours for years - while dismissing their equally working class victims, whose expectations of lawfulness are much less compelling.

Sam Duncan

“One cannot say often enough that the victims of crime are, like the perpetrators, more likely to be poor than rich. For example, single-parent households in Britain have a more than one-in-20 chance of being burgled in any given year”

That's the problem, right there. The Leftists assume that criminals must be the poor opressed masses rising up against the Rich. The Rich have all the stuff worth stealing, right? So Poverty is the Root Cause of Crime™. Stands to reason. But the truth is that they're just a crowd of scrotes picking on the easiest target: their own neighbours who can't afford, or are physically unable, to defend themselves.

WTP

who tells us, confidently, that crimes like burglary are undeserving of prison sentences and are “really quite inconsequential.”

There's never a feminist when you need one. Having been robbed twice in the early 80's, well actually my parents were robbed while I was at college and I was robbed at college when home visiting my parents one Christmas, and having a college friend and his girlfriend robbed, I observed that men take such things differently than women. As men, we were all quite pissed about the situation but it didn't strike at us on a fear/violation/emotional level. My mother and my friend's girlfriend were both very upset and disturbed by the situation in ways that we men were not. Much sleep was lost and much anxiety created. To say that such was "really quite inconsequential" shows a stunning lack of comprehension of the impact of such crimes when they happen where women sleep.

David

To say that such was “really quite inconsequential” shows a stunning lack of comprehension of the impact of such crimes when they happen where women sleep.

There’s a moral and emotional tone-deafness, certainly. But it’s not just women – the elderly, the frail, and people who can’t afford insurance and who have no hope of replacing whatever was stolen from their home. It’s an appalling violation, and anyone would be entitled to feel upset about it. Though apparently not in the fantasy world of Mr Stafford Smith.

David Gillies

We are constantly enjoined, usually by people who are extremely comfortably situated, not to set too much store by material things. But for someone towards the end of their span, those material things are tokens of an entire life lived. A particular knick-knack, be it ever so unimportant to anyone else, might recall a happy memory, or a poignant one. It's no surprise that so many elderly people die shortly after having been burgled, even if they are physically unharmed. The urge to vengeance might call for those responsible to be flayed and fed to pigs, but we can probably agree that the severity of punishment is only loosely correlated with rates of offending. However no-one seems to be able to articulate exactly why, when they are mentioned in the press, burglars almost always have prior convictions numbering in double figures. Even if the punitive and rehabilitative aspects of prison are stripped out, there remains the prophylactic, incapacitative effect. If you're banged up, you're not thieving. It should be literally impossible to rack up more than a handful of convictions, if sentencing became progressively more severe (perhaps exponentially so). If you get a stern finger wagging and a suspended sentence for the first one, five years for the next, 7 1/2 for the third, 11 1/4 for number four, then by seven convictions total sentence is longer than a normal human lifespan. Or maybe you invoke a three-strikes-and-you're-out rule, and stick to it.

I've said before (including here) that a hefty chunk of the ills of modern life can be ascribed to the fact that actions are almost devoid of consequences. This is obviously true for the feral scum who are barely inconvenienced by the criminal justice system, but it is also true for the magistrates, judges, social workers and politicians who let it happen. It is not only just that these people should be robbed, violated and killed like the rest of us, it is probably the only way they could ever be persuaded to change their ways.

Joan

Or maybe you invoke a three-strikes-and-you're-out rule, and stick to it.

Works for me.

Hal

. . . our left-leaning, status-conscious intellectual caste:

Ahhh, hang on . . . .

Whether right wing extremist or left wing extremist, the choice is status-conscious or intellectual . . . where the intellectuals do tend to sort through all the details, and see where those details actually lead . . .

Remember, hipsters, by definition, are not the counterculture, they are the lackingculture.

Jeff Guinn

The fact that they carried knives and other weapons did not bode well for those of us on the other side of the steel door they were trying to prise open.

Where I live, that is called a target-rich environment.

Which could well be why that sort of thing doesn't happen where I live.

David

It occurs to me that the Miévilles of the world might benefit from watching a few episodes of the reality series Cops. I doubt they’d enjoy its depiction of underclass criminality, recidivism and general dysfunction, but there’s a slim chance it might, once in a while, make them hesitate before speaking.

JuliaM

"I've said before (including here) that a hefty chunk of the ills of modern life can be ascribed to the fact that actions are almost devoid of consequences. This is obviously true for the feral scum who are barely inconvenienced by the criminal justice system, but it is also true for the magistrates, judges, social workers and politicians who let it happen."

Amen! But such is life. It's unfair.

Were it fair, it would have been the expedition leader's head in the mouth of that polar bear in Svalbard, and not the head of the poor bloody student whose parents had been shown a risk assessment and assured everything was covered...

David

Where I live, that is called a target-rich environment.

Quite. Thankfully that was years ago in the rougher part of a different city. It would, though, be nice if the people who still have to live and work there could do so without vermin preying on them. And without Guardian columnists making endless excuses for those who do it with near impunity.

pst314

"Miéville’s commentary… demonstrates an ability to avoid social reality common in a certain kind of educated fool"

I increasingly lean to the belief that they are not so much fools as friends of evil who hide their true intentions behind a facade of intellectualism. Consider, for example Cory Doctorow, who is very good at constructing rhetorical justifications and evasions for evil: He has said that his mind was trained by growing up the child of two hard-core Trotskyites who constantly argued the fine points of genocidal theories (not that he would put it quite so honestly.)

pst314

Theodore Dalrymple "I worried that I was more likely to suffer punishment for having caught the assailant's fingers in the window than was the assailant for having grabbed me by the collar in the first place."

I wonder if that worry is a significant factor in the desire for vengance that he worried about feeling: If he felt more confidence in the criminal justice system would he feel less desire to mete out his own rough justice? We know that British courts tend to only lightly punish career criminals while severely punishing honest citizens guilty of minor infractions or of the "crime" of self-defense.

Hal

There is a rather simple tool to make use of---and to continue my reaction several paragraphs back . . .

David comments that It occurs to me that the Miévilles of the world might benefit from watching a few episodes of the reality series Cops. . . .

That does point to the screamingly blatant flaw in McCaffery's comments, where one can address the flaw---and then keep going with much greater facility . . .

Intellectuals do not participate in the market (at least not in the areas they write about), and do not generally rely on satisfying consumers to earn a living. Add to this their naturally critical attitude… and it is easy to see why intellectuals would be hostile to the market. In other words, . . .

. . . In other words, the sorts of idiots being discussed are not intellectuals.

They certainly may be monofocused on Having Things, and Being Upscale, and We Demand There Must Be, but that's not thinking, that's just demanding . . . . and in that is the sort of error we see both the right wing liberal "intellectual" idiots making, absolutely as much as we see the left wing liberal "intellectual" idiots making the same error . . .

Therefore, whether Miéville or McCaffery, when dealing with someone, right wing liberal or left wing liberal, when enduring someone who keeps reciting ideology instead of reality, do point out the lack of reality, do point out in this case that the intellectuals are the ones who will sort through the details---when the facts change, I change my mind . . . no amount of right or left wing hand waving or applying of ideological labels will have any worth, the basic reality will trump every time . . .

rxc

The enviro-left is dedicated to the collapse of western civilization, as we know it. They talk about this - Maurice Strong said it explicitly at a conference in Switzerland a while ago. Obama has always said that he wanted to transform the US.

I know it sounds like conspiracy thinking, but you have to consider:

1. All the green efforts to de-industrialize and stop producing anything anyone would want to buy;
2. The bleeding-heart expressions of compassion for feral youth that urge them on to more destructive behavior;
3. The buildup of the large welfare state that, in Scotland, wants to assign a "named person/bureaucrat" to each and every child;
4. The destruction of any competitiveness by the unions;
5. The PC movement that shuts down any discussion of any topics that they don't like, and even the cleansing of the language of any words they find hurtful, especially now in science and politics

I used to think that it was not really a conspiracy, but just a shared vision of the future by everyone in the left/green camp, but it is hard to get over the feeling that someone, somewhere is at least nudging us over the precipice. How much evidence do we need to figure out where the guidance is coming from?

pst314

Hal "Intellectuals do not participate in the market "

Intellectuals are rewarded for being "new" and "innovative". It doesn't much matter if their new ideas are true or practical, only that they are original.

Furthermore, intellectuals never suffer the consequences of their bad ideas. Entrepreneurs with bad ideas go bust. Authors who fail to please their readers soon are forced to find other employment. But intellectuals can turn out foolish and harmful ideas and recommendations year after year with no harm to themselves, and with no sign that they care about the harm they cause. Perhaps if this system of rewards and punishments were to be changed... :=)

TimP

@David Gillies and Joan:

If you get a stern finger wagging and a suspended sentence for the first one, five years for the next, 7 1/2 for the third, 11 1/4 for number four, then by seven convictions total sentence is longer than a normal human lifespan. Or maybe you invoke a three-strikes-and-you're-out rule, and stick to it.

In general I like the idea of escalating punishments for crimes depending on criminal history, but you need to be cautious to make sure they don't escalate to much. As the old story goes:

In Ancient China a group of spearmen where on their way to meet up with the rest of the army. They where a couple of days out from the rendezvous point when the village elder sat them down around the campfire and started to ask them questions:

"Does everyone know what the punishment for being late is?"

"Death" one of the spearmen replied.

"Does everyone know what the punishment for rebellion is?"

"Death" said another.

"Well boys ... we're late."

And you don't want the absurdity like the Californians throwing shop-lifters in jail for life, that's just silly.

Still prior-record should be taken into account for crimes. If you're going to reform it's probably going to be during the first prison sentence afterall.

There is the option of encouraging judges to hand down suspended sentences. Perhaps all crimes have reasonably aggressive minimum suspended sentences (there's some problems with minimum sentences, but giving the Judge the ability to decide if it's suspended or to be served straight away would alleviate some of them). Of course with suspended sentences you get the funny case of a Burglar who's now mostly reformed getting a major time in jail for shoplifting.

Another possibility is a simple percentage add, for burglary you might add +50% for any future sentence, or for shoplifting +5%, or mugging +75%, with the add on percentages adding together. An example sentence might be something like:

No criminal record: 5 years.
2x shoplifting: 5 years 6 months
1x burglary, 2x mugging: 15 years

The advantage of this is that I suspect Judges would be more likely to use it. It's easier to say "In future if you continue down this route you'll be punished more harshly" than "You are going to be punished harshly here and now". I'd probably leave it up to the sentencing authority to decide what percentage increase was appropriate for each case though, perhaps with guidance in the laws as we now have for number of years.

Another option would be to have prior convictions increase the "without-parole" period. I think I've read that parole is the big problem here, in that most criminals get out before serving their full time, so leave the total sentence the same, but prior convictions increase the minimum time until parole is possible.

MikeG81

He has said that his mind was trained by growing up the child of two hard-core Trotskyites who constantly argued the fine points of genocidal theories (not that he would put it quite so honestly.)

I bet his birthdays were a blast.

rabbit

Many years ago, we had two university professors come in to conduct a seminar on how to make our company more productive. They began by asking why the company does what it does. What is its purpose?

Of course someone piped up that the company's purpose was to make money. Now the proper response was to say "Damn rights!" and then ask for other opinions. Instead these professors turned red and muttered that mere money grubbing was a rather base motive.

We passed up a great opportunity to ask the professors how they felt about not getting paid for the seminar, given how demeaning the profit motive is.

pst314

Speaking of moronic defenses of violent thugs:

David, have you seen this Jeremiad in the Grauniad against fascist cupcakes?

Thugs=good, cupcakes=evil.

WTP

Yeah, pst, DT posted that before. But I was reminded of that story after running across this yesterday and I am now rather confused. If cupcakes are fascist and (as it is oft said) Wall Street is fascist, why is Wall Street trying to kill a cupcake company?

http://time.com/2966994/crumbs-wall-street/

pst314

"why is Wall Street trying to kill a cupcake company?"

Or maybe it's the evil fascist bourgeoise who are killing the cupcake company by not buying enough cupcakes. Except that the bourgeoise are fascists. Oh I'm so confused. :-)

Hal

Hal "Intellectuals do not participate in the market "

Intellectuals are rewarded for being "new" and "innovative". It doesn't much matter if their new ideas are true or practical, only that they are original.

Furthermore, intellectuals never suffer the consequences of their bad ideas.

Ah, no, what I'm pointing out is that intellectuals do suffer the consequences; When there are ill consequences, then intellectuals suffer such consequences in all such cases.

The point is that assorted idiots being discussed are not intellectuals, so unless you're enamored of them, or unless you're McCaffery and equally mistaken, stop calling them intellectuals . . . . .

Consider, by contrast:

James Burke is an intellectual.

Albert Einstein was an intellectual.

Groucho Marx was an intellectual.

Marie Curie was an intellectual.

Clive James is an intellectual.

Irving Thalberg was an intellectual.

Neil deGrasse Tyson is an intellectual.

Richard Feynman was an intellectual.

Grace Hopper was an intellectual.

Andrew Beal is an intellectual.

JK Rowling is an intellectual.

Nathan Mayer Rothschild was an intellectual.

William Shakespeare was an intellectual.

Benjamin Disraeli was an intellectual.

Thomas Jefferson was an intellectual.

Now.

Of the people that McCaffery is discussing while being quite incorrect in describing them, are they intellectuals?

Or, is the better and honest and accurate practice to call 'em what they are?

As pst has just pointed out; Speaking of moronic defenses of violent thugs: . . . . . . .

pst314

Hal, I get your point but disagree: I don't define 'intellectual' by the quality of the thinking but by the professional niche. I think Thomas Sowell defined an intellectual best: "Intellectual" is an occupational category, not an honorific. An intellectual is somebody who deals primarily with abstract ideas, not practical applications of ideas.

"The term 'pseudo-intellectual' has sometimes been applied to less intelligent or less knowledgeable members of this profession. But just as a bad cop is still a cop--no matter how much we may regret it--so a shallow, confused, or dishonest intellectual is just as much a member of that occupation as is a paragon of the profession."
--Intellectuals and Society by Thomas Sowell.

Hal

An intellectual is somebody who deals primarily with abstract ideas, not practical applications of ideas.

Albeit pointing to a what more than a who, according to your definition, the pomo generator would count as an intellectual.

The issue is not good cop vs bad, where both are cops.

The issue is that both a practical mathematician and an abstract mathematician are both mathematicians and thus represent the elite---and thus both remain quite distinct from, to pick the easy local target, Minnow.

Would you consider Minnow to be an intellectual?

Hal

To expand further, with a

---I'm Not getting movie editing done while I'm typing this, but then the kettle is on, so I'll type fast before the whistle starts---

couple of matters, I am aware of being among a variety of minority of usage when I insist on accuracy, or minority so far, in that there is a majority that has a common usage . . . but definitely an incorrect usage . . .

I've commented on the rather immense gulf between parents being those who raise children, vs breeders being those that merely contribute some egg and sperm and go their own way---or even remain in the vicinity, but emphatically have nothing to do with raising a child . . .

Again, see any headlines in the news that tell of some breeder abusing, harming, murdering a child, and consider that even if the lazy headline writer states "parent", does that story truly involve an actual, genuine, mother or father?

In turn, I've had no problem pointing out that right wing extremists are just as liberal, gimme my agenda Right Now!!!, as the left wing liberal extremists that equally demand their mirroring agenda.

So again, noting assorted headlines, when the equally lazy headline writer tries to blame conservatives for some openly loony right wing extremist agenda, the actual conservative is still going to be the one totally equidistant between the liberal extremes, is still going to be the conservative who notes, and observes, and considers, who changes his mind when the facts change . . . . yes, by the way, is the conservative candidate who beat the right wing liberal candidate in the last two U.S. Presidential elections . . when to the disgust of the left wing liberal supporters, they had to support that clearly conservative candidate because, tactically, he is Democrat in party, just not liberal in practice . . .

. . . . so a shallow, confused, or dishonest intellectual is just as much a member of that occupation as is a paragon of the profession."
--Intellectuals and Society by Thomas Sowell.

. . . and also therefore, Sowell getting into print remains as much as example of accuracy and quality as, oh, if Laurie Penny managed to get something into print . . .

---and I didn't beat the whistle, oh, well, now back to the editing anyway . . .

dicentra

Hey, the bitty fish hasn't appeared.

Interesting.

Hal

Hey, the bitty fish hasn't appeared.

Oh, no, no, no, you have to say the name three times consecutively.

Once each in two different sentences doesn't count.

David

Morning, all.


pst314,

David, have you seen this Jeremiad in the Grauniad against fascist cupcakes?

Oh yes. That one was particularly inscrutable. On account of Mr Whyman being so desperate to let us know just how clever he is, and of course how leftwing:

The constellation of cultural tropes that… paradigmatically manifest in the form of the cupcake… the paradigmatic mechanisms of social oppression operative today in the form of a cupcake… the ideology of cupcake fascism… violently imposing a particular set of bourgeois values on society…

Needless to say, our furiously socialist philosophy student was so busy throwing around jargon, almost randomly, he didn’t have time to actually argue his points, logically, or check basic facts - say, regarding the 2011 riots and those who took part in them. A model student, then. And one day, perhaps, a model lecturer.

And the Guardian seems to have a thing about cupcakes and their allegedly corrupting effects on women. Presumably that’s why they’re banned in at least one of the Guardian’s offices.

See, when you say it out loud it sounds a little insane.

David

As I said to Julia a while ago, quite a few Guardianistas seem to base their moral calculus on vanity – on wanting to be seen caring (or pretending to care) for the latest, most exciting (or contrived) victim group, as defined by them. An effect of which is to shift empathy (or pretend empathy) from the working class victim of crime and social disorder to the working class thug or criminal, on grounds that the criminal is in some way being oppressed and, unlike their neighbours, being made to misbehave.

Imagine for a minute that you’re a Guardian columnist. It could be Zoe Williams, for instance, who rails against the word “chav” and thinks that people who live in the rougher parts of town shouldn’t have a word to describe those whose behaviour, not their income, lowers the tone or makes their lives a misery. Say, by playing loud music at 3am or throwing pets from a tenth floor window. The same Ms Williams who wants us to believe that the problem with ‘problem families’ is simply that they’re poor, and nothing whatsoever to do with how they abuse their equally poor neighbours.

Or Barbara Ellen, who tells us that unprovoked aggression against posher people and the bullying of posher kids is “part of an instinctive protest against inequality” and all about “socio-political emancipation.” And therefore tickety-boo. You see, it’s not just routine thuggery or driven by petty malice, it’s “protest,” an “art form.”

If those don’t appeal, you could be Polly Toynbee or Owen Jones, or Fabian intellectuals Tom Hampson and Jemima Olchawski, all of whom make very similar noises.

Now picture the scenario. If Mrs Wilson’s life is being made hell by her equally poor but much more troubled neighbour – the one whose fatherless children run riot, who blasts out loud music at 3am and whose pets fall from the sky – who are you going to pick as most in need of your solidarity and compassion? Remember, your peers may be watching. Mrs Wilson is just an old dear who scrapes by without much fuss or need of social workers. Her troubles aren’t self-inflicted and are therefore rather dull. She may even, God forgive her, vote Conservative.

From the viewpoint of the devout Guardianista, there are more Bogus Compassion Points to be scored by picking the household with all the exciting and intractable problems, all those lovely pathologies, any number of which can, with squinting, be blamed on capitalism or Conservative governments. And so, like Zoe and Jemima and Polly, you rush to their defence - rhetorically, of course – excusing their behaviour, insisting they stay put and be indulged in some way, with little if any thought for Mrs Wilson and the nightmare she puts up with.

[ Added: ]

As we’ve seen many times, our middle-class Guardianistas tend to be sympathetic to the working class - as a concept – only when the working class agrees with Guardian orthodoxy. Which, it has to be said, isn’t very often. Hence the tireless efforts to “correct” them from on high. And if the “oppressed” working class start expressing views directly at odds with Guardian orthodoxy, then the “voiceless” proletariat mysteriously become “middle Englanders” or “little Englanders” and therefore the Guardianistas’ favourite objects of disdain. It’s a complicated relationship.

And don’t forget George Monbiot’s bewildered encounter with the not-so-noble savage.

present & correct

educated fool

an explanation of the phenomenon here...

http://medicalhypotheses.blogspot.co.uk/2009/11/clever-sillies-why-high-iq-lack-common.html

"Conclusion

Because evolved ‘common sense’ usually produces the right answers in the social domain, yet the most intelligent people have personalities which over-use abstract analysis in the social domain [9] and [10], this implies that the most intelligent people are predisposed to have silly ideas and to behave maladaptively when it comes to solving social problems.

Ever since the development of cognitive stratification in modernizing societies [29], the clever sillies have been almost monopolistically ‘in charge’. They really are both clever and silly – but the cleverness is abstract while the silliness is focused on the psychological and social domains. Consequently, the fatal flaw of modern ruling elites lies in their lack of common sense – especially the misinterpretations of human psychology and socio-political affairs. My guess is that this lack of common sense is intrinsic and incorrigible – and perhaps biologically-linked with the evolution of high intelligence and the rise of modernity [35].

Stanovich has also described the over-riding of the ‘Darwinian brain’ of autonomous systems by the analytic system, and has identified the phenomenon as underlying modern non-adaptive ethical reasoning [36]. Stanovich has also noted that IQ accounts for much (but not all) of the inter-individual differences in using analytic evaluations; however, Stanovich regards the increased use of abstraction to replace traditional ‘common sense’ very positively, not as ‘silly’ but as a vital aspect of what he interprets as the higher status of modern social morality.

Yet, whatever else, to be a clever silly is a somewhat tragic state; because it entails being cognitively-trapped by compulsive abstraction; unable to engage directly and spontaneously with what most humans have traditionally regarded as psycho-social reality; disbarred from the common experience of humankind and instead cut-adrift on the surface of a glittering but shallow ocean of novelties: none of which can ever truly convince or satisfy. It is to be alienated from the world; and to find no stable meaning of life that is solidly underpinned by emotional conviction [37]. Little wonder, perhaps, that clever sillies usually choose sub-replacement reproduction [6].

To term the Western ruling elite ‘clever sillies’ is of course a broad generalization, but is not merely name-calling. Because, as well as political correctness being systematically dishonest [33] and [34]; in relation to absolute and differential fertility, modern elite behaviour is objectively maladaptive in a strictly biological sense. It remains to be seen whether the genetic self-annihilation of the IQ elite will lead-on towards self-annihilation of the societies over which they rule.


Note: I should in all honesty point-out that I recognize this phenomenon from the inside. In other words, I myself am a prime example of a ‘clever silly’; having spent much of adolescence and early adult life passively absorbing high-IQ-elite-approved, ingenious-but-daft ideas that later needed, painfully, to be dismantled. I have eventually been forced to acknowledge that when it comes to the psycho-social domain, the commonsense verdict of the majority of ordinary people throughout history is much more likely to be accurate than the latest fashionably-brilliant insight of the ruling elite. So, this article has been written on the assumption, eminently-challengeable, that although I have nearly-always been wrong in the past – I now am right…."

Matt G

@David,

Well thanks for reminding me of the peerlessly repugnant Jody McIntyre! I'd mercifully forgotten all about him, until now.

A truly unscrupulous sh^t-stirrer is our Jody, even by left-wing standards and of whom one suspects has channelled all the frustrations of his disability into unbridled extreme-left political activism - with disastrous results.

And lest we forget that it was the 'inconsistently disabled'* McIntyre who, valiantly aided by his ever compassionate mates, deliberately got himself wheeled out in front of mounted police prior to charging during the 2010 student 'protests' in the hope of generating some unfavourable headlines against the police or better still, forcing them to remove him for his own safety. The police naturally carried him off in the interests of safety thus enabling comrade Jody to disingenuously proclaim 'police brutality', 'fascism' amongst a plethora of blatantly false allegations to an ever-receptive media as a consequence.

*Jody also reputedly scaled Tory HQ and even got on the roof during said protests.... despite paradoxically being confined to a wheelchair whenever interviewed on television or photographed for news articles.

Personally, I can conceive of only two possible explanations for this apparent miracle of near-Biblical proportions: A) Jesus has indeed returned to us once more and been selflessly heeling the physically-impaired, including Jody, on the quiet, or B) Jody shamefully exploited/exaggerated his disability to elicit undeserved sympathy and to further his dubious agenda...

Hmm, too close to call methinks.

Either way, Jody's a repellent little Trot sh^t by any standard and it's little wonder that The Graun and The Indy are receptive to his boundless fantasies!

Phew, I feel better now. :)

Nonnymuss

Perhaps a little off topic, perhaps close to it in some ways.

A relative of mine attended a meeting with a council worker who was unashamedly of the left. The subject came up of children who were being fostered or cared for. The socialist was furious that one child had been placed with a family who "went to church" and demanded the youngster be found another care home away from what was described as a pernicious influence. I believe the lefty said "we don't want a child growing up in that sort of environment." While others at the meeting pointed the child was well cared for and settled, this was not good enough for the loudmouth who demanded upheaval and change.

For me, that sums all lefties all up. There is no examination of a situation, no real compassion in them. All they have is the mindless repeating of vogue words and stock phrases that might please other lefties but have no bearing on reality.

pst314

Hal "Would you consider Minnow to be an intellectual?"

I don't know, because I don't know what Minnow's profession is. All I can gather is that, based on Minnow's comments here, Minnow is a fool or a liar.

Minnow

Hey, the bitty fish hasn't appeared. Interesting.

I have a few devastating points that need making but I seem to have an attack of itchy thumbs and ear-burn. Will drop in later.

pst314

Hal ... and also therefore, Sowell getting into print remains as much as example of accuracy and quality as, oh, if Laurie Penny managed to get something into print...

You don't know what you're talking about. Learn something about Thomas Sowell before you comment again.

fnord

where the intellectuals do tend to sort through all the details, and see where those details actually lead . .

If one uses this as a definition then there would seem to exist precious few intellectuals.

Minnow

Some George Orwell might be useful though:

The whole idea of revenge and punishment is a childish day-dream. Properly speaking, there is no such thing as revenge. Revenge is an act which you want to commit when you are powerless and because you are powerless: as soon as the sense of impotence is removed, the desire evaporates also.

Minnow

As we’ve seen many times, our middle-class Guardianistas tend to be sympathetic to the working class - as a concept – only when the working class agrees with Guardian orthodoxy.

Well, maybe, for the (possibly straw-stuffed) 'Guardianista', but I think most lefties are closer to Orwell (again):

I have no particular love for the idealized “worker” as he appears in the bourgeois Communist’s mind, but when I see an actual flesh-and-blood worker in conflict with his natural enemy, the policeman, I do not have to ask myself which side I am on.

Jo

And don’t forget George Monbiot’s bewildered encounter with the not-so-noble savage.

Actually laughed out loud. Brilliant.

WTP

Yeah, Orwell was speaking in the context of post war Germany, not a specific criminal responsible for a specific crime. Which itself puts aside the undeniable FACT, mentioned earlier as well, that a locked up hooligan is incapable of committing more crime.

The quoting of Orwell by some is often quite ironic.

And thanks, Hal, for the charm. /sarc

Steve 2: Steveageddon

Hi Minnow

I thought it was a strange and distressing dream on Mr Dalrymple's part. I often have violent dreams myself, but usually involving more agency on my part.

Recently I dreamt that I was fist-fighting a polar bear and my ursine foe tore my left arm off. Enraged, I picked up my severed limb with my remaining arm, and beat the magnificent arctic beastie to death with it.

There were a bunch of elves from Santa's workshop watching the fight, betting on the bear, and they booed when I won. So I took them all on, knocking them with my arm like it was a cricket bat. The little buggers were biting my legs and trying to stab me with sharpened candy canes.

They say revenge is a dish best served cold, like soup in a fancy restaurant. I say balls to that - revenge should always be served nuclear hot, like a freshly stirred Pot Noodle.

I've never been able to get into this "turn the other cheek" thing. That may work for saints and martyrs, but I'm no saint and don't want to be a martyr.

Now, does that mean revenge and punishment are childish? If the film "Payback" by Mel Gibson taught us anything, it's that revenge is always justified, and you shouldn't cross Mel Gibson.

More broadly, criminals in Britain no longer fear the law. We ought to change that.

Minnow

More broadly, criminals in Britain no longer fear the law. We ought to change that.

Since we put more and more poeple in jail each year, you'd think the opposite, wouldn't you? What else could we do to increase their fear?

David

revenge should always be served nuclear hot, like a freshly stirred Pot Noodle.

In other news, I’ve just discovered that Waitrose do a posh version of Pot Noodle. I may have to investigate. For science.

Steve 2: Steveageddon

Hi Minnow - we have a rapidly rising population, so yes, you'd expect more people to be in jail.

We need more prisons and stiffer sentences. It'll be expensive, but law and order is the most basic function of government. We can't afford to skimp on it.

Take the London riots for example: many of the rioters had dozens of prior convictions. Had they been in prison where they belonged, lives would have been saved.

Plus, think of all the new jobs a major prison building programme will create. It's a win-win.

Steve 2: Steveageddon

David - :)

"Failure to follow instructions will bring great shame to yourself and your family."

A tiny seppuku blade is included in every pack.

Minnow

We need more prisons and stiffer sentences.

How many more would like to see imprisoned, more or less? We are already beating the rest of Europe bar one, but perhaps we should be aiming to imprison as many as South Africa, say? Or maybe Russia? How ambitious should we be?

Steve 2: Steveageddon

Hi Minnow - I think aiming for a rate of imprisonment is the wrong way to look at it.

We should build as many gaols as we need to accomodate violent recidivists. Whether that means we end up with a higher rate of incarceration than Belgium or whatever is irrelevant, because we don't live in Belgium.

David

A tiny seppuku blade is included in every pack.

It may be a way to quickly ingest large amounts of MSG without the proletarian stigma.

Minnow

We should build as many gaols as we need to accomodate violent recidivists.

What reason do you have for thinking that violent recidivists are not already in jail?

Smudger

Prison doesn't work! (Man!)

Setting repeat offenders up in free houses next door to Minnow and other clueless bleeding hearts... that works.

For shits and giggles.

Walling such ghettos in after a month or so with millions of copies of News From Nowhere would be sex.

Thornavis.

Minnow

What's your suggestion then for how to respond to criminals ? Please don't respond with some vague generality about social justice and how crime would wither away if we were all equal, what do you think our response should be to people who commit crimes especially serious ones ?

Minnow

What's your suggestion then for how to respond to criminals ?

Look at similar places that have smaller prison populations and less crime than we do and copy them. I don't think anyone doubts that the following would reduce crime: less poverty, more education, more devolution of political power. Of course some people will still be locked up. I just get a bit queasy when I meet people who seem to be enthusiastic at the prospect. Although I tend to agree with Orwell that the urge is a childish one based in impotence.

Steve 2: Steveageddon

Minnow - What reason do you have for thinking that violent recidivists are not already in jail?

Apart from the fact that so many crimes are committed by repeat offenders? Many of them with dozens of prior convictions and multiple ASBOs? Yet they're free to walk the streets?

Minnow

Apart from the fact that so many crimes are committed by repeat offenders?

First of all, don't believe everything you read in the Daily Mail. Second of all, you can't keep people in jail forever if you want a functional jail system. Maybe there is another way to put a stop to repeat offending? I mean surely people have tried schemes?

http://www.cheshire.police.uk/news--appeals/latest-news/2012/01/scheme-to-reduce-re-offending.aspx

Steve 2: Steveageddon

Hi Minnow - I don't think anyone doubts that the following would reduce crime: less poverty,

We are one of the richest societies on Earth. Even most of our "poor" can afford three square meals a day, Sky TV, cigarettes, booze, and accomodation that most people on the planet would regard as luxurious.

more education,

We have more university places and more kids getting high marks in their GCSE and A Levels than ever before.

more devolution of political power.

Your other points were just wrong, but this one is delightfully eccentric as well as wrong.

"Sorry guv, I wos gunna join your crew to do a bit of armed robbery at the local bookies. But then I remembered we ave a Greater London Authority now. So it's the straight and narra for me!"

You're just pulling our legs now, aren't you? :)

Minnow

We are one of the richest societies on Earth. Even most of our "poor" can afford three square meals a day, Sky TV, cigarettes, booze, and accomodation that most people on the planet would regard as luxurious.

Most people in the world would find two rooms and internal running water luxurious, but I bet you wouldn't, because you live here not there. And the poor people here feel poor. Personally I don't blame them. I know what it is like.

We have more university places and more kids getting high marks in their GCSE and A Levels than ever before.

But these are not the repeat offenders. We have to reach them.

more devolution of political power. Your other points were just wrong, but this one is delightfully eccentric as well as wrong.

No, there really is good evidence that people act more lawfully when they feel that they have more control over their lives. In fact, you may even have experienced this in your own life.

pst314

"Second of all, you can't keep people in jail forever if you want a functional jail system. Maybe there is another way to put a stop to repeat offending? I mean surely people have tried schemes?"

Some have suggested whipping for some offenses: severe physical pain as a deterrent, and no incarceration means no long-term living with other criminals to learn how to be a more skillful criminal.

Thornavis.

Minnow

I should have known you wouldn't be able to resist a Marxist response to my question and I should perhaps have phrased it differently. There is nowhere where crime does not exist and I was trying to establish whether you see any moral aspect to this at all, do you think that criminals, for whatever reason, are doing something wrong, If so then what do you suggest is an acceptable response to that ? This is the problem with all essentially utilitarian approaches to crime reduction, if you ignore the need to see crime punished then you are in effect telling the victims that their loss or suffering is not really important, further you undermine general confidence in the trust that we need in one another for society to function properly.

Here's another question for you, what do you think of the constant feminist complaint that rape convictions are too low ? Leaving aside the accuracy or otherwise of this statement how does the feminist/leftist desire to see more convictions and punishment for this crime square with the view that such responses aren't needed for other crimes ?

Minnow

Some have suggested whipping for some offenses

Some have. But surely nobody around here would like to see this sort of grotesquerie return to Britain? Not sure how it prevents violent recidivism either.

R. Sherman

But these are not the repeat offenders. We have to reach them.

Where I live, we reach them out to about 500 yards or so with a 5.56mm.

Steve 2: Steveageddon

Minnow -I'm disappointed in you. Daily Mail indeed.

And the poor people here feel poor. Personally I don't blame them. I know what it is like.

So naturally, you turned to crime, yes?

But these are not the repeat offenders. We have to reach them.

I agree. Reach them, then jail them.

No, there really is good evidence that people act more lawfully when they feel that they have more control over their lives.

Political devolution = more control over their lives. Ha! :) So there must be no crime in Wales and Scotland now, right?

In fact, you may even have experienced this in your own life.

The only crimes I've committed were under the influence of alcohol. Did you know the police frown on public urination? Fascists!

Minnow

There is nowhere where crime does not exist and I was trying to establish whether you see any moral aspect to this at all

I do of course. It is entirely wrong for example that so many billions have been robbed by bankers at the cost of so many lives blighted or destroyed without there being any significant retribution. But do we really want to fill our jails with bankers or would it be better to reform the institutions and processes that encourage and facilitate their criminiality, educating them away from antisocial behaviour, helping them to become productive citizens?

Here's another question for you, what do you think of the constant feminist complaint that rape convictions are too low ?

I think this is probably true and needs to be addressed. You agree with that I am sure. I mean, you don't want to exempt rapists from retributive justice? But, along with those feminists, I think the most pressing concern is to change the social conditions that make rape likely.

Rafi

"Vote Minnow. Doom civilization in five years or less."

WTP

Although I tend to agree with Orwell that the urge is a childish one based in impotence.

Again, Orwell was speaking specifically about revenge and again in the specific context of one Jew's understandable (as Orwell stated) reaction to the Nazi's who tormented and killed his family. To call such a thing "childish" is childish itself. You are ignoring the other positive aspect of keeping the criminals off the streets during their incarceration time along with any sense of safety and security the known victims that such criminals cannot prey upon them during their incarceration.

And you can help yourself to abide by Thornavis' request to "Please don't respond with some vague generality about social justice and how crime would wither away if we were all equal".

As for crime and poverty, every one of my first and second generation ancestors grew up poor. Coal miners, farmers, laborers, etc. None of them stole. They had values. A point recently reinforced when discussing such with my 98 year old cousin. There have been times and histories past that you have no understanding nor consciousness of but what you have been fed by left wing and Marxist ideology.

And actually "Since we put more and more people in jail each year, you'd think the opposite, wouldn't you?" in the US it has shown that crime rates go down as incarcerations go up, relative to population size. Of course many other factors are involved but to argue that locking up criminals does not affect the crime rate is ivory tower BS. See P&C above re "educated fools". Though I would argue that persons such as yourself are not so much educated, nor even of high IQ. The more dangerous aspects of P&C's post are those hangers on/followers who lack even the education and intelligence to understand the dogma you repeat but simply pose as such by adopting the rhetoric. Similar to certain pious religious and cult followers who lack the understanding of the words they spew.

Lastly, don't believe everything you read in Les Miserables. It was an idealized work of fiction and as such, for all its good points, has its flaws.

Minnow

Political devolution = more control over their lives. Ha! :) So there must be no crime in Wales and Scotland now, right?

There really is one than one way to devolve power. I would want to see a substantial increase in economic power too.

I am slightly bemused by all the people who think that social circumstances have no effect on criminality. Do they think it is just a coincidence that repeat offenders tend to be poor people, with low levels of education and a history of violent and/or sexual abuse? Or is it a genetic thing?

Minnow

Where I live, we reach them out to about 500 yards or so with a 5.56mm

Ah, how excitingly butch! I bet you have an eye patch too!

Minnow

As for crime and poverty, every one of my first and second generation ancestors grew up poor. Coal miners, farmers, laborers, etc. None of them stole.

All that you can confidently claim is that none of them was ever caught stealing.

Steve 2: Steveageddon

Hi Minnow - I would want to see a substantial increase in economic power too.

That's easy. They have these things called jobs... ;)

Do they think it is just a coincidence that repeat offenders tend to be poor people,

Course not. Poverty and poor decision making skills, lack of impulse control etc. go hand in hand. A wise man once said "the poor will always be with you", and he was right. Even if we divvied up all the world's wealth equally today, within a year or two we'd go back to having relatively wealthy and relatively poor people. Because we're not all the same.

Minnow

That's easy. They have these things called jobs... ;)

Unfortunately, not enough for everyone.

A wise man once said "the poor will always be with you", and he was right.

We can choose whether he was right or not. We don't have to wait until the next world, although I can see it is convenient if the poor can be persuaded that is true.

WTP

All that you can confidently claim is that none of them was ever caught stealing.

There is only one proper response to that, given the distance. Fuck you. Who the $%(& do you think you are? So if wildly speculating is the game today, you little worthless shit sitting in your basement while your wife delivers cupcakes to your (admittedly) fat ass...What have you contributed to society? How do we know that you're not a common thief who has grown too damn fat to commit crimes so now you subsist on the dole, possibly while your poor wife goes out to make the dough. I mean, it's certainly possible, of course. Can't rule it out.

Steve 2: Steveageddon

Minnow - Unfortunately, not enough for everyone.

Nonsense. We have so many jobs going, we import immigrants by the lorryload to fill them.

We can choose whether he was right or not. We don't have to wait until the next world, although I can see it is convenient if the poor can be persuaded that is true.

Well, I found that being poor sucks, so I decided not to be poor any more. It's worked out well so far.

If others want to sit on their backsides and cry about how they're not getting enough freebies, well, let me just find my invisible tiny violin so I can play them a sad, sad song...

Minnow

How do we know that you're not a common thief who has grown too damn fat to commit crimes so now you subsist on the dole, possibly while your poor wife goes out to make the dough.

You can't. Just as you can't know what crimes your ancestors committed if there are no records of them. Of course you are highly motivated to think the best of them, but that has no bearing at all on reality.

your wife delivers cupcakes to your (admittedly) fat ass...

Arse, my wife delivers the cupcakes to my fat arse. Although her action is so poor that an awful lot of them go wide.

pst314

"There is only one proper response to that, given the distance. Fuck you."

Too bad we're not all in the same room: You could bust Minnow's face while we all fail to notice.

Thornavis.

Minnow

The number of bankers committing actually criminal offences is tiny, the problem certainly is systemic however but I suspect our approaches to changing that would be very different, which is where the problem lies with the thorny question of crime and punishment, we all have different views on the appropriate levels of punishment but just about everyone thinks there should be some, which implies that there is a universal human need to see criminals suffer some sort of unpleasant consequence for their actions. Viewing crime as a purely social phenomena is neither possible or desirable, that was my point about the rape question, which you have, I suspect deliberately, missed. If progressives truly believed that crime was simply a by product of social injustice then they would be no more inclined to demand greater retribution for rape than for burglary.

Btw rape convictions aren't particularly low in comparison to other crimes, higher than some in fact, which leads me on to the disturbing tendency of radfems to demand an erosion of due process in bringing more cases to court and obtaining a higher conviction rate, something they would recoil from in horror if it was suggested for most other crimes. Which is a good example of where the rationalist, utilitarian, sophisticated metropolitan approach to crime breaks down, when it involves a crime the progressive finds particularly abhorrent or fears they could themselves be the victim of they become as red in tooth and claw as the most fire breathing, Daily Mail reading, hanger and flogger.

Minnow

Nonsense. We have so many jobs going, we import immigrants by the lorryload to fill them.

All capitalist economic theory posits a minimum level of unemployment. And a quick look around you will show that it isn't just theory.

Well, I found that being poor sucks, so I decided not to be poor any more. It's worked out well so far.

I am glad you got lucky. It doesn't work for everyone, because some people don't have your advantages.

Minnow

Too bad we're not all in the same room: You could bust Minnow's face while we all fail to notice.

More stirring machismo. Thrilling!

Minnow

which leads me on to the disturbing tendency of radfems to demand an erosion of due process in bringing more cases to court and obtaining a higher conviction rate

I suggest you find a radfem and take it up with hir.

Steve 2: Steveageddon

Minnow - sure, there will always be some level of unemployment, because some folks will always be between jobs. An economy with permanent zero unemployment would be a moribund economy, like in the Soviet Union.

I am glad you got lucky. It doesn't work for everyone, because some people don't have your advantages.

Well, being handsome hasn't hurt me, I'll give you that. But it really wasn't luck. I worked my backside off!

Minnow

Well, being handsome hasn't hurt me, I'll give you that. But it really wasn't luck. I worked my backside off!

Maybe, but working your backside off doesn't work for everyone, you have to get lucky. Some people are unable to work hard, some work hard to no avail, some work hard at things that make lots of money because they are good at those things, others find they are good at things that don't have a great deal of market value. It's luck. And you are right, being good looking increases your lifetime income substantially. So does being tall. Luck.

Thornavis.

I suggest you find a radfem and take it up with hir.

No I'm taking it up with you because you are the one here who suggested that rape convictions were too low. My point being that if you think that convictions and punishment for crime A are inadequate it doesn't do to dismiss the claims of others that convictions and punishment for crimes B to Z are also too low and suggest that it is just a desire for revenge.

My wider point being that progressives generally and not just radfems, claim to believe that crime is a product of injustice and inequality but their revealed preferences when it comes to the punishment for rape tell a different story.

Steve 2: Steveageddon

Minnow - people think it's easy being really, really, really ridiculously good looking. It isn't! Driving a car is much more hazardous than for normies, because if I catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror I risk being bewitched by my own reflection.

I also worry that I might be too sexy for my shirt, Milan, New York and Japan, and/or my cat.

Anyway...

working your backside off doesn't work for everyone, you have to get lucky. Some people are unable to work hard, some work hard to no avail, some work hard at things that make lots of money because they are good at those things, others find they are good at things that don't have a great deal of market value.

So we have this thing called the market, that allows us to find the most valuable ways to serve one another.

Not everybody comes out with equal rewards, but so what? We've fixed the age-old problems of famine, people living in ditches, pooping in the streets, etc. There is no absolute poverty in the UK any more, thanks to the excess wealth generated by markets.

Yay for capitalism!

Thornavis.

Minnow

Let me see if I've got this right, inequalities are the result of capitalism and the loaded dice of its economic system. However whether individuals thrive or not is entirely a matter of luck, that seems to be your, somewhat contradictory, take on the way of the world. I'm confused as to whether you are a Marxist or a fatalist.

DH

Do they think it is just a coincidence that repeat offenders tend to be poor people...

So handing repeat offenders shedloads of cash, redistributed from the pockets of law abiding citizens, will just magically transform them into better people?

WTP

Do they think it is just a coincidence that repeat offenders tend to be poor people...

I know this is a waste of time, and yet...and yet...Correlation is not causation. But even given that, the kind of mind set that leads one to commit crime, to take what isn't yours, to thwack people over the head for the sheer joy of it, to rape, to pillage, to plunder, is not the sort of mind set that is capable of making positive, productive contributions to society. Of course one would have to be mighty dense to not understand this. Or be too highly "educated" thus conditioned to pretend to not understand this.

And curse you Hal and Dicentra for conjuring this $&%# back up again. And I suppose I must curse myself for participating. Curses.

Steve 2: Steveageddon

Guys, no need to be so anti-Minnowite.

He's just arguing his point of view on the internet, not delivering poop through your letterbox.

BTW, if you need to send someone poop by post, I recommend:

http://www.poopsenders.com

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