Tuesday, September 28, 2004
AUSTRALIA'S ELITIST LEFT
("The Coalition" is Australia's Conservatives. "Labor" is the major Leftist party)
Most candidates for federal elections hold values on economic and social questions that are unlike those of most voters. However, Coalition candidates are much closer to the people who vote for them than Labor candidates are to Labor voters. Labor’s electoral base is divided between a relatively small number of new-class social professionals and a relatively large number of people in traditional working-class occupations. These two groups often hold different values on political questions, such as border control, the size of the immigration program, cultural pluralism and so on. Labor candidates in federal elections are more likely to sympathise with the social professionals’ values than with those of their traditional supporters.
Monday, September 27, 2004
Brains that Rarely Think
If anyone has attended college or kept abreast on the views of our intellectual betters, they would find a pervasive consistency of skepticism among the elites of the intelligentsia. These are certainly wise folks. They're smarter than us and probably drink better wine. In their eternal battle for recognition, many of these esoteric snobs have come to despise the country that bestows reward most upon those who "serve the customer." The citizen/customer in capitalist society has typically not chosen to shower adulation upon winners of coffee shop poetry competitions or woman's studies doctoral candidates -- so, they're pissed! Oh well.
While the brain caste looks down their noses at us inferior bourgeoisie drones, the cash and the power keeps flowing to the real world champions of achievement, entrepreneurs and common citizens who may choose to read Sartre, write novels, or raise a family, drink beer, and go bowling.
The high polished self-inflated egotist of the intellectual Left despises the United States -- they always have. They will never acknowledge the country's value or goodness until we plebs acknowledge our own "inferiority" and obey a state erected under one of their own pet philosophies (hint - it won't be a free market constitutional republic).
Socialism is, and always has been, the vehicle for the establishment of rule by intellectuals. There are no cases in history where a businessman has slaughtered millions. Indeed the most violent purges in history have all been the work of poets, philosophers, failed artists, and "thinkers" (with a few lawyers thrown in for good measure) hoping to create the latest utopian cage. With this in mind, it's no coincidence that the Leftist intellectual is so sympathetic to dictators and authoritarian government whether it be Castro's Communism or Hussein's Fascism.
There are of course many intellectuals who have no such admiration or aspiration for dominance and destruction. There are some who do not possess the envy so characteristic of many among their caste, but when an intellectual spouts praises to Marx and a collectivist social order take that as a warning. That little dweeb in the corduroy jacket has a vision that can kill, and his or her "insights" into America's "injustice" are no more than what one should expect from a character that despises free, open, and diverse society.
Post reproduced from The Promethean Antagonist
Wednesday, September 22, 2004
Mrs Kerry's elitist view of her fellow Americans: "Oh, there is a lot of scumbags everywhere. Not just in politics. In everything. There are a lot of immoral people everywhere."
AN EMAIL FROM A LEFTIST READER
I got one of the usual sort of leftist hate-mails from a Kerry fan called Suzee, to which I replied: "Only a hate-filled person would send such an email to someone they did not know. Try Valium" She replied: "Hmmm, valium is used to treat anxiety - not anger. Seems - your website was filled with a lot of hate and anger towards a man you obviously know nothing about. I'm not angry - just surprised at how stupid people can be. And when you create a factless website for anyone, on the Net to view you leave yourself open for criticism. The scary thing is, your probably a registered voter. They really should revoke voting privileges for those who can't pass a competency test or for those who can't answer a multiple choice test, showing they know all the facts about each candidate." Note the elitist dislike of democracy that is so typical of the Left: "They really should revoke voting privileges for those who can't pass a competency test". And someone who doesn't know the difference between "your" and "you're" thinks she is competent? Typical Leftist ignorance, more like it. The worst sort of ignorance, in fact: Ignorance that thinks it is competent. And her assumption that I am a registered voter is amusing too. If she had really looked at my site, she would have soon noticed that I am an Australian! Or perhaps she thinks Australians can vote in U.S. elections! All in all, I think she gives quite a good demonstration of Leftist "competence".
Tuesday, September 21, 2004
There is a review here of a Leftist historian who calls genocidal violence "the dark side of democracy". I guess Hitler and Pol Pot must have been great democrats! Elitist Leftists sure hate democracy!
Monday, September 20, 2004
Only Leftist elites deserve the best. No vouchers to give the poor any choice, of course. This article is from a little while back but nothing has changed.
"As candidates for governor, Democrats Robert Casey Jr. and Ed Rendell promise to improve public schools and oppose providing state grants to students to attend the school of their choice. Yet, Casey's four daughters attend the same Scranton Catholic schools as their father did, and Rendell's son, who is now in college, had attended Quaker-run Penn Charter School in Philadelphia.
The two men's press secretaries offered similar explanations as to why both candidates decided not to put their child in public school. "It is a reflection of what he and his wife believe is the best choice for their children," said Karen Walsh, spokeswoman for Casey.....
Casey and Rendell want to increase the state's share of the cost of kindergarten through 12th grade from the current 35 percent to more than 50 percent, what it was 30 years ago. They both emphasize a focus on early childhood education. Casey's plan and Rendell's plan would provide for all-day kindergarten, funding for pre-school and enhanced school safety.
In contrast, Mike Fisher, the Republican candidate that one of these men will face in November, does not believe there is a need to increase state funding of education. Fisher's daughter is a recent law school graduate and his son is a Penn State graduate, but he had sent his children to public schools in the affluent Pittsburgh suburb of Upper St. Clair. Fisher supports the idea of school choice".
Sunday, September 19, 2004
AN INTOLERANT LEFTIST ELITE BEHIND THE BRITISH HUNTING BAN
"The ferocity of the reaction against the hunt protesters was not motivated by the way that they made a little scene in the Commons. It was motivated by the fact that many in the political and media class think that these people are scum. This provides an instructive insight into the limits of New Labour's much-vaunted belief in social inclusion. We are forever being lectured about the importance of tolerance, minority rights and respect for other people's lifestyle choices in modern Britain. But the vitriol poured on the hunters' heads shows that there are new dominant prejudices at play. The illiberal elite cannot tolerate the choices of these people, whose attempt to exercise their 'rights' is deemed not just wrong but repugnant.
It is often said that this hatred of the hunters is a class issue, because they are all 'Toffs'. The upper class types who invaded the Commons certainly seemed to be trying to live up to that caricature. But even if that was really what it is all about, what would be the point of such a petty 'class war' today? It is not as if the aristocracy exercises any power over the rest of us any more. But in any case, this is no old-fashioned class war. It is more like a one-sided twenty-first century culture war against people who do not conform to the norms of New Labour's Britain. Everything about the hunting community - traditional, rural, conservative, parochial - flies in the face of how we are supposed to live now. Hell, these people even insist on treating animals like, well, animals!
It was striking to see how, in dealing with the pro-hunting protests outside parliament, the Metropolitan Police took their lead from the illiberal elite. Under New Labour since 1997, the police have largely felt able/obliged to remove the iron glove that they used against inner-city rioters and striking miners in the 1980s, and briefly against the poll tax rioters in 1990. This week they chose to put that iron glove back on, in order to deal with a crowd of self-consciously respectable rural citizens. The hatred directed at those whom the Mirror branded 'Tally Hooligans' gave the Met the green light to baton charge the men and women in waxed jackets.
You do not need to be a toff or a foxhunter, or support their silly PR stunts, to want to oppose the puffed-up witch-hunt against them. The campaign to ban hunting is a politically motivated crusade about sanitising society by taming 'wild' people, not saving foxes. In response to the pictures of bloodied hunt supporters who had been beaten by the police outside parliament, many on the left sneered about 'toffs getting a taste of what happened to the miners'. Those of us who defended the miners in the past would do more for the cause of democracy by taking a stand against the victimisation of hunters today.
When an opinion or a pastime that goes against the tastes of our illiberal elite can be dismissed as 'Out of bounds' - something that should not only be opposed, but outlawed - it ought to be obvious that the pressing threat to political freedom does not come from five posh boys being rude to some MPs.
Saturday, September 18, 2004
ELITIST CLASS PREJUDICE BEHIND FOOD CORRECTNESS
"In the docu-blockbuster-cum-human-experiment Super Size Me, released in British cinemas over the weekend, New York filmmaker Morgan Spurlock eats nothing but McDonald's meals three times a day for a month.
Sounds radical, right, taking on the Golden Arches of America and charging them with making poor folk sick and miserable by forcefeeding them junk? In fact, Super Size Me, like so many other anti-McDonald's campaigns, comes with a generous side order of snobbery. Its real target is the people who eat in McDonald's - the apparently stupid, fat, unthinking masses who scoff Big Macs without even asking to see a nutritional and calorie breakdown first. Spurlock and his ilk might hate McDonald's, but they seem to loathe the McMasses even more....
So Spurlock grosses out in order to see what it's like to be one of those gross Americans. Fellow American Cosmo Landesman of The Sunday Times praises him for taking a 'kamikaze dive into the gargantuan blubber-gut and buttock-mountain serial heart-killer and cholesterol free fall that is obese America's fast-food blowout'...
It is striking how morally loaded some of the discussions about food are. In one of the funnier scenes, Healthy Chef Alex - a holistic health counsellor who believes in 'integrating appropriate food choices and lifestyle options' - tries to coax Spurlock away from the 'corrupt' world of meat-eating and towards a Good Life of nuts and lentils. Spurlock visits a school where the pupils are calm and attentive and claims that it's a result of their eating healthy school dinners from the Natural Ovens Bakery rather than the sugary fare stuffed down kids' throats in other districts. Food, it seems, is not only about taste, enjoyment or nutrition; what we eat apparently reveals something of our moral character.
In this, Super Size Me chimes with the times. On both sides of the Atlantic there's a large portion of moralising in the panics over obesity, school dinners, junk-food-guzzling and the rest. What is presented as straightforward medical concern for our health and wellbeing is often really a judgement on lifestyle and behaviour - and especially the lifestyle and behaviour of a certain class of people. In debates about 'bad' foods (McDonald's), fast foods (microwave meals), and fat mums in clingy leggings who make their kids fat too by feeding them 'junk', there's a barely concealed contempt for the working classes, who are presumed to be lazy, feckless and not sufficiently concerned with healthy cooking and fitness. It's there in the terminology: they are seen as 'junk' people....
Instead, at a time when few are willing to say what kind of lifestyle is right and wrong, the lower orders are lambasted for their eating habits and lack of food-consciousness - all in the name of helping to transform them into better healthy happy citizens, of course. The moral divide today is ... between those who eat healthily and those who (allegedly) don't, between good foodies and bad burger-eaters.
Such cheap McMoralism is best summed up in a leaflet produced by McSpotlight, an anti-McDonald's campaign group that encourages local communities in the UK to resist the building of new McDonald's restaurants. Under the heading 'Litter, noise and smells', the leaflet says McDonald's will 'result in noise and disturbances at all hours....the smell from the kitchens, from waste storage and from litter disgarded [sic] by customers may become offensive and attract vermin'. What these campaigns really hate about MaccyD's is the kind of people it attracts; in McSpotlight's leaflet, offensive 'customers' and 'vermin' all merge into a mishmash cautionary tale about the apparent horrors of the modern McDonald's. Meanwhile, inside my local McDonald's, normal-looking families can be seen enjoying their Happy Meals....
Leftist journalists occasionally let their real thoughts out. Note this comment from one such elitist in her interview with Jay Leno: "But surely "Jaywalking" [Leno's man-in-the-street segment] shows you what morons Americans are." How Leftists hate ordinary people! I wonder how it is that "morons" have created one of the freeest, most dynamic, most prosperous, most powerful and most generous nations the world has ever known?
Saturday, September 11, 2004
THE POST-REAGAN LEFT
Would-be elites attack business: "In his new book, Biz-War and the Out-of-Power Elites: The Progressive Left Attack on the Corporation, Jarol Manheim, professor of media and public affairs and political science at the George Washington University, documents the rise of the new anti-corporate Left. The book looks closely at the ideology, organizing strategies and communications tactics that liberal activists are using to challenge both this country’s business elite, as well as politically ascendant conservatives.... To build unity among the various factions, the reconstituted Left settled on an identifiable enemy— for-profit American corporations... Biz-War describes the activists, organizers, and institutions of the new liberal Left— a loose alliance of liberal foundations, labor unions, religious activists, environmentalists, activist pension funds and CSR boosters. And it explains how they are coming together to take back the power and authority they believed was unduly stripped from them."
Friday, September 10, 2004
A REAL BLAST OF ELITISM
"We know best"
"Teresa Heinz Kerry says "only an idiot" would fail to support her husband's health care plan. But Heinz Kerry, the wife of Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry, told the (Lancaster) Intelligencer Journal that "of course, there are idiots."
Kerry's proposal includes health care subsidies for children, the unemployed, small companies and more; and government assistance to insurers and employers that keep premiums for workers down. If Kerry is elected, Heinz Kerry predicts that opponents of his health care plan will be voted out of office. She says, "Only an idiot wouldn't like this." "
Tuesday, September 07, 2004
THE ARROGANCE OF LEFTISM
A recovering Leftist recalls his Leftist indoctrination
"What is most fascinating to me now, from my current vantage point, is how intensely conformist I, and my friends who thought as I did, actually were; and how extraordinarily ironic this was considering our own opinion of ourselves. We were absolutely convinced of our identity as innocents in holy revolt, indeed, we fancied ourselves nothing less than morally ascendant dissidents in a corrupted society, a society which, of course, from our point of view, consisted mainly of our teachers and school administrators, for we knew no other establishment. Of course, none of us had the perspective to look and see that, far from rebelling or offending, we were, in fact, the very fullfillment of that establishment's dreams. They came from a generation which had aggrandized rebellion and alienation -- combined with a ferocious moral arrogance -- as the highest form of human expression and the highest expression of human values. I realize now, with a certain measure of rueful irony, how much of that surety was simply manipulation -- unconscious perhaps, but manipulation nonetheless -- in service of that establishment's highly selfish and material interests.....
So I began too to see deeper flaws in those sureties I had so long accepted. I began to sense, or perhaps at last to admit to, inherent contradictions at work in the machine in which I had once placed so much faith. The leftist catechism denounced the United States government as inherently corrupted and beyond repair, and the solution had been to hand massive swaths of the American society and economy over to the control and regulation of the state; in other words, the United States government. It extolled civil liberties but proposed a collectivist creed which fundamentally negated the individual. It claimed to oppose concentrated, monopoly power but proposed to concentrate it to a degree unprecedented in American history. There seemed no connection whatever between these ambitions, and I began to suspect that the entire formulation was ultimately nothing more than an expression of the will to power; that the first had been concocted merely to enable the second....."
Monday, September 06, 2004
AUSTRALIAN LEFTIST LEADER TAKES ON THE LEFTIST ELITISTS
He needs to if he is to win elections
"After Gough Whitlam, the Labor Party became an uneasy alliance between the educated middle class and the workers. Whitlam's reforms, Mark Latham has written, had created "a new generation of insiders" - the progressive establishment, led by academics and artists. For Latham, the culture wars of recent times have their origin in the old elite's resentment of the new "insiders".....
"They have little experience of suburban life and suburban values. Both practise a symbolic and abstract style of politics, based on the concentration of power and the preservation of the ruling elite. They are both out of touch," Latham has written.
The crisis of Labor in recent years is that the alliance between the educated middle class and the workers lies in ruins. Evan Thornley, a Labor Party insider and the publisher of some of Latham's books, uses the terms "academics" and "punters" to describe the two sides of the fracture. Latham has coined more confronting terms. He speaks of "Tourists" and "Residents". He says the insiders live like tourists in their own country. There is a sense in which they don't live in Australia at all.
"They travel extensively, eat out, and buy in domestic help. They see the challenges of globalisation as an opportunity, a chance to further develop their identity and information skills. This abstract lifestyle has produced an abstract style of politics. Symbolic and ideological campaigns are given top priority. This involves a particular methodology: adopting a predetermined position on issues and then looking for evidence to support that position."
The outsiders, on the other hand - the people who live in the outer suburbs and the regions - are the Residents of Australia. Their values are pragmatic. They cannot distance themselves from the problems of the neighbourhood, and so good behaviour and good services are all-important. There is no symbolism, and also no dogma, in the suburbs, Latham says. The Residents look for small, pragmatic improvements; they are not interested in "big pictures".....
The academic David Burchell has noted on this page that the most atypical Australians, as measured by their attitudes to immigration, multiculturalism and ethnicity, are the graduates of the universities. In their attitudes and beliefs they are "foreign" to their fellow Australians.
The 2001 Australian Election Survey, conducted by political scientists at the Australian National University, showed that only one in five Australians disagreed that asylum-seekers should be turned back. But 44 per cent of graduates were against turning them back. Twice as many graduates as other Australians disagreed with the statement that migrants should try to be "more Australian". Overall, Australians supported the return of the death penalty by more than two to one. Among graduates, the proportions were reversed. The residents of Western Sydney - home of the Howard battlers that delivered him power - varied from national opinion on seven key questions of migration, multiculturalism and national identity by just nine percentage points. Graduates differed from the rest of Australia by almost 18 percentage points - in the opposite direction.
Some of those in Latham's inner circle refer to the favoured issues of the Tourists - such as refugees and Aboriginal reconciliation - as "totems". In their view, the left-intellectual approach to these issues is built on faith and conviction more than on reason, let alone political pragmatics. If Labor lets down the Tourists on these matters, the party will be denounced as betraying its true values. Yet the people Labor needs to win back - the Residents - are either hostile or indifferent to these issues".
Saturday, September 04, 2004
Dubious French culture: "Himmelfarb's basic contention... is that the great 18th century French Enlightenment has been vastly overrated and that the British and American Enlightenments have been comparatively underrated.... So who stole the Enlightenment and gave credit for it to the French? Himmelfarb never says so directly, but one can venture a guess: liberals in academia. Her critique of the French Enlightenment is twofold: First, the French philosophes, from Rousseau to Voltaire to Diderot and the rest, were anti-religious, and second, they were elitists who scorned the common people... The great Voltaire, Himmelfarb points out, opposed education for the children of farmers on the grounds that they were mired in religious superstition and thus largely unredeemable. This kind of elitist thinking, Himmelfarb tells us repeatedly, pervaded the French Enlightenment. So did totalitarian impulses, impulses embodied in the French Revolution and "the Terror."