David Thompson
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January 02, 2008

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herbert

A terrific piece

mojo

One has to wonder if the Witch-finders General still use this...
http://www.malleusmaleficarum.org/

KG

What a lovely post! The more these two-faced, dishonest charlatans (do I repeat myself?) are exposed, the better.

David

As a footnote, I think there’s also the careerist aspect to consider – specifically, the pressure on many academics to have something new to say – some novel (and adversarial) position which they can espouse or write a paper about. The problem is this can encourage the pursuit of shadows. If an academic is regarded as an authority of some kind on, say, racism, then new and more contentious forms of racism may have to be discovered (or fabricated), if only to warrant attention or pad out a book. If the surrounding society is not, in fact, getting worse in this regard, the actual situation may have to be embellished or distorted. This may help explain why the hugely loaded term “cultural racism” is thrown around quite casually, and why Peggy McIntosh waffles on about “invisible knapsacks of white privilege.”

Lovernios

Yes, after the carcass has long been picked clean, only the marrow remains for sustenance.

steveaz

David wrote:

"[...]new and rarer forms of oppression have to be discovered, many of which are curiously invisible to the untrained eye."

This is analogous to another progressive pet-project: "universal" health care. I'm noticing a regular trickle of hyped "superbugs" and supposed epidemics, none of which ever pan out years later. Asian Bird Flu was one, and SARS was another.

5-years after we were subjected to days-long blustering about the SARS epidemic, replete with footage of masked commuters in Tokyo and Malaysia, I can't find any sign of the impending epidemic in any MSM reports.

To your wit: New and rarer forms of diseases are being discovered, many of which are truly invisible to the naked eye! If they ever existed, that is.

David

Steve,

Having trawled through plenty of Guardian commentary on racial politics, it seems to me that, for pale-skinned lefties at least, it’s very often an exercise in self-preoccupation and vanity. Far too many commentators are keen to flatter their own self-image as concerned, virtuous and superior, irrespective of whether the positions they advocate do more harm than good, and regardless of whether they perpetuate precisely the anxieties and fixations they claim to oppose. (The ideological contempt for “colour-blind” policies springs to mind as an example.) The ideologues I’ve highlighted on this site over the last few months are, unfortunately, a sampling of a more pervasive mindset, and one that seems devoid of any credible moral basis, or claim to justice, or connection with reality. The terms “institutional racism”, “white privilege” and “cultural racism” - and the tribal arguments that tend to go with them - should be met with at least one eyebrow raised and, wherever possible, a pelting with soft fruit.

steveaz

Thanks, David,
Unfortunately soft fruit doesn't leave a dent. Maybe if we tossed frozen grapefruits at 'em instead! Just jokin'!

Slightly OT, but still regarding the purposeful generation of societal psychoses that can be exploited politically: here is a link to an Oxford report that says unequivocally that SARS mortality was overstated in 2003: http://her.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/full/21/5/662

This Oxford link documents a more credible 5% mortality. Yet, true to form, the Leftist UK Guardian is pitching their hyped 20% mortality figure. And the NYT's hype is not much better.

Anything will do to scare us Yanks into modeling the UK's NHS!
-s

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