Idiots Reporting On Idiots

Okay, we all know that Amnesty International got captured by the militant left years ago and went from a group fighting for the release of prisoners of conscience to a run-of-the-mill political lobby group masquerading as a charity. Anyone who took them seriously after their general secretary said the US prison at Guantanamo Bay was “the gulag of our times” in 2005 is an idiot. Naturally, this means those at the BBC take them seriously, hence an Amnesty report singling out Trump for special criticism is front page news:

Politicians who have used a divisive and dehumanised rhetoric are creating a more divided and dangerous world, says rights group Amnesty International.

Its annual report singles out President Donald Trump as an example of an “angrier and more divisive politics”.

There’s a spectacularly odd notion out there that Donald Trump is a divisive President, implying he approached a unified country and split it in two via “dehumanised” rhetoric. Hopefully there is at least someone out there besides me who thinks Trump’s success was born of the fact that America was already deeply divided long before he threw his hat in the ring for the Republican nomination.

But it criticises other leaders, including those of Turkey, Hungary and the Philippines, who it says have used narratives of fear, blame and division.

It would be easier to list those politicians who don’t employ such narratives. Or are we to believe that the vitriol being poured onto those Brits who voted to leave the EU by the likes of Jean-Claude Juncker and the anti-English bile spewed by Nicola Sturgeon is somehow different?

The group also says governments are exploiting refugees for political ends.

By importing them by the million as voting-fodder and (laughably) to shore up collapsing government finances?

The report, which covers 159 countries, cited a rise in hate speech across the US and Europe targeting refugees and said the reverberations would see more attacks on people on the basis of race, gender, nationality and religion.

Alas, the Amnesty Report doesn’t say what they mean by “hate speech”. What’s the betting their definition includes a mere questioning of the merits of unfettered immigration?

“Instead of fighting for people’s rights, too many leaders have adopted a dehumanizing agenda for political expediency,” Salil Shetty, secretary general of Amnesty International, said in a statement.

“The limits of what is acceptable have shifted. Politicians are shamelessly and actively legitimizing all sorts of hateful rhetoric and policies based on people’s identity: misogyny, racism and homophobia.”

Yes, identity politics is an awful thing, isn’t it? Causes all sorts of rifts and divisions. Just the sort of divisions a man like Trump could come in and exploit, actually. Only he didn’t create them, did he?

The group made special reference to Mr Trump’s executive order last month that banned refugees and immigrants from seven mostly Muslim countries from entering the US.

It said Mr Trump put “his hateful xenophobic pre-election rhetoric” into action by signing the measure.

Whereas Obama’s decision to end the policy of America accepting Cuban refugees doesn’t warrant a mention. Here’s what the report does say about Obama and Cuba (page 25):

Notable events during 2016 included US President Barack Obama’s historic state visit to Cuba, which put the two countries’ human rights challenges – including the ill-treatment of migrants in the USA, the impact of the US embargo on Cuba’s human rights situation, and the lack of freedom of expression and the repression of activists in Cuba – in the international spotlight

It does also say this, though (page 12):

[Trump’s] predecessor, President Barack Obama, leaves a legacy that includes many grievous failures to uphold human rights, not least the expansion of the CIA’s secretive campaign of drone strikes and the development of a gargantuan mass surveillance machine as revealed by whistleblower Edward Snowden.

Not that the BBC included this snippet in their article. For reasons of space, presumably.

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14 thoughts on “Idiots Reporting On Idiots

  1. The sort of people who believe a politician’s speeches can cause division are the same people who think that The Sun somehow influenced the course of the election.

    It’s classic cart before horse logic.

    It’s no more true than believing betting on a specific team causes them to lose a match.

  2. The sort of people who believe a politician’s speeches can cause division are the same people who think that The Sun somehow influenced the course of the election.

    Exactly.

  3. Your point about Junker/Sturgeon and their ilk also speaking of division and yet this going ignored by the media is a good one.

    For Christ’a sake, Sturgeon is constantly threatening a referendum- that’s more an act of division than simply blaming ‘them other wrong ‘uns’ for woes.

    Although, as it appears the U.K. not only let’s the wrong people out of jail, but gives them a million quid to bankroll a training holiday for suicide bomber hood with IS, I’m kind of hoping for more locking up of wrong ‘uns in future

  4. It is said advice is easy to give and hard to follow, but in the minds of the Graun, CNN, NYT, WashPo and the good old Beeb (among the many other caring branches of the media) it is even easier to pin blame on imagined causes and harder to accept that events might just be more than the simple matter of one elected monster in power.

    But deadlines clearly demand lightweight thinking and the recycling of worn out idealism, and well-paid and responsibility-free pointing fingers don’t just jab themselves.

  5. Division in politics is kinda the point, isn’t it?

    Otherwise you aren’t getting much of a choice at all, like when the UK had New Labour vs Blue Labour from at least 1997 to 2015.

    “Hate speech” is just meaningless drivel for “stuff we don’t like”, so has about as much value as when “Fascist” or “racist” is used.

  6. “It’s no more true than believing betting on a specific team causes them to lose a match.”

    Hmm, not betting, but me watching Scotland play rugby, even walking in to the room when the Mrs has them on the telly, is strongly correlated with them conceding points (or failing easy opportunities to gain them.)

  7. “UK had New Labour vs Blue Labour from at least 1997 to 2015”.

    Considering that May thinks the state is a force for good, and can pivot from remain to brexit just to gain power, I’d argue that we still have blue labour.

  8. The hijacking of Amnesty was the death of one of the few major charities that I had respect for. I find it ironic that for a sect that values ‘diversity’, their control of all these organisations has made them indistinguishable from each other. Seriously, I’m sure their press releases all come from the same group of people and just get the logo switched around now.

  9. “Hopefully there is at least someone out there besides me who thinks Trump’s success was born of the fact that America was already deeply divided long before he threw his hat in the ring for the Republican nomination.”

    Ah, now they all knew America was divided. The difference was that they were in power and therefor those who believed differently to them could be punished and shoved down without remorse, because clearly, they were on the wrong side of history. They were deplorable, and not worthy of discussion in polite company.

    Ben Shapiro has a wonderful video showing Trump getting roasted by Obama at a dinner, if you substitute Trump for all the ‘deplorables’ then what has happened in the States makes a lot more sense.

  10. @monoi, February 22, 2017 at 6:01 pm said:

    “UK had New Labour vs Blue Labour from at least 1997 to 2015”.

    Considering that May thinks the state is a force for good, and can pivot from remain to brexit just to gain power, I’d argue that we still have blue labour.

    +1

    May is more left-wing statist than Cameron – eg mandating workers/union-reps on company boards, male/female/alphabet pay in private firms public disclosure etc

  11. @Surreptitious Evil

    I hate to break it to you but, well, I think the Renton speech could be as relevant to Scottish rugby as it is to general Jockistanishness. https://youtu.be/29-LRuuqFT0

    Stuart Hogg is mercurial however. Him and Richie Gray get Seat 1a and 1b on the Lions’ plane this year.

    By the way, I do enjoy how Sturgeon uses “Westminster” as a synonym for “English bastards”, as she doesn’t want to be accused of the R word.

  12. @TNA

    Well, she can’t be a racist, can she? As any fule no, you can’t be racist against white people (funny how that became a thing just as equality was- broadly speaking- achieved, eh?)

    Also- Nicola is provably racist as she demands independence from those English bas- I mean Westminster, whilst determinedly trying to become a province under the European yoke. If not anti English, then what?

  13. Seriously, I’m sure their press releases all come from the same group of people and just get the logo switched around now.

    I expect you’d find that the individuals who work in these “charities” hop from one to another with barely a thought of what the organisation is purportedly for, bumping up their pay and perks with each move. It’s an industry, no different from banking, for example.

  14. I expect you’d find that the individuals who work in these “charities” hop from one to another with barely a thought of what the organisation is purportedly for, bumping up their pay and perks with each move. It’s an industry, no different from banking, for example.

    I’ve worked a lot in a few different charities as an employee. That rings true, and not just at the top level either.

    You often get colleagues looking at you funny when you remind them “this is a charity”.

    Anonymous, because. But your point was worth endorsing.

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