Worm Eaton

A couple of days ago New Statesman published an interview between their deputy editor George Eaton and the conservative philosopher Roger Scruton. Here’s how Scruton approached the interview:

I recently gave an interview to the New Statesman, on the assumption that, as the magazine’s former wine critic I would be treated with respect, and that the journalist, George Eaton, was sincere in wanting to talk to me about my intellectual life.

Turns out it was a hit job. Eaton littered the piece with quotes stripped of context which portrayed Scruton as antisemitic, an Islamaphobe, and derogatory towards Chinese. For example, the New Statesman interview contains this paragraph:

Perhaps most remarkably, he commented of the rise of China: “They’re creating robots out of their own people… each Chinese person is a kind of replica of the next one and that is a very frightening thing.”

Scruton’s actual words were:

“They’re creating robots out of their own people by so constraining what can be done. Each Chinese person is a kind of replica of the next one and that is a very frightening thing.”

It is clear from the full quote that Scruton is talking about the Chinese political system and its demands for uniformity from the population. By removing the words in bold, Eaton makes it sound as though Scruton’s saying Chinese people are indistinguishable from one another. Eaton claims he removed the context for reasons of space, which tells you he doesn’t care much for his reputation, that of New Statesman, or journalism as a whole.

When the interview came out, Scruton served as  an adviser on a government architectural committee. For reasons that are scarcely fathomable even for an outfit so inept, unprincipled, and cowardly as the Conservative party, UK Communities Secretary James Brokenshire fired Scruton. A spokesman for the Prime Minister said his remarks were “deeply offensive, completely unacceptable and it’s right that he’s been dismissed”. Even half-sensible Tories stuck the boot in:


New Statesman is less of a news journal than a leftwing agitprop organ. They publish Laurie Penny, for goodness sake. What the hell the Tory party are even doing reading it, let alone letting it dictate who they fire, I don’t know. For his part, Eaton posted this on Twitter before later deleting it:

In other words, it was a deliberate hatchet job by a lefty hack and the Tory party, perhaps thinking their reputation for incompetence, treachery, and cretinism was not quite solid enough from Brexit, walked right into the trap laid for them. As Scruton responded in The Spectator and news reached the dolts in Tory HQ that the interview had been misleading, they removed one foot from their mouths and replaced it with another:


So the sacking of Scruton was a panicked, knee-jerk reaction based on left wing propaganda they didn’t bother verifying. And these are the sort of people who think they should be running the country.

There are a few points to make here. Firstly, it shows the incompetence and lack of principles we’ve seen over Brexit is not a one-off: it runs to the very core of the Conservative party. Like a lot of people these days, they’re more interested in pandering to the metropolitan middle classes and people who hate them than their core constituents. They are also woefully inept. If Britain is to revive its political fortunes, the Conservative party needs to be destroyed, the building razed, and the ground it stood on soaked with anthrax. There is nothing left to save, and nobody to redeem (except the one MP who reads my blog of course, because by doing so she’s proven she exposes herself only to the best ideas).

Secondly, journalists like to claim they are under attack more than ever before. They do so on the rather pompous presumption they are guardians of the truth who hold the powerful to account. I doubt journalists in the UK are in any greater danger than ironing-board vendors, but if I wanted to increase the online abuse and threats media figures receive, and diminish public sympathy if and when one gets smacked in the mouth by a disgruntled citizen, publishing a brazenly dishonest interview and quaffing champagne in celebration when the subject gets fired is how I’d go about it.

Thirdly, I don’t give a damn if Scruton’s words weren’t doctored. The idea that anyone slightly to the right should be hounded from his position for holding opinions which don’t conform to the ever-shifting standard set by lunatics in university social science departments needs to be resisted, and hard. This is especially true when those on the left – even those in positions of substantial power – frequently engage in open racism, antisemitism, and misandry to rapturous applause from their followers. As I’ve said before, if the right are going to join the left in condemning their own every time they utter an unapproved opinion, they’re part of the problem. If the right can’t support Scruton now, regardless of what he said or didn’t say, could they at least have the decency not to complain during the next decade or two of cultural Marxist domination?

And maybe now’s not the best time to talk about principles either, Johnny:


Now where did I put my Gallic shrug?

UPDATE

Keep digging, Johnny:

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LGBThee

From Shell’s corporate website:

At Shell, we care about the diversity of our people because we believe that a fully inclusive workplace allows our employees to flourish and so allows our business to flourish.

When our employees excel, we excel. It’s for this reason that we are proud to support our lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) staff, promoting equality for employees regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.

Also from Shell’s corporate website:

Shell has been active in Brunei since 1929, when the first commercial oil find was made by the British Malayan Petroleum Company, owned by Royal Dutch Shell.

The Company was the forerunner to the present joint-venture company of Brunei Government and Royal Dutch Shell, Brunei Shell Petroleum Company Sdn Bhd.

Through the solid partnership between the Government and Royal Dutch Shell, BSP, Brunei LNG (BLNG), Brunei Shell Marketing (BSM), Brunei Shell Tankers (BST)/Brunei Gas Carriers (BGC) form the Brunei Shell Joint Venture (BSJV) companies which constitute the largest employer in Brunei after the government.

Shell Deepwater Borneo (SDB) is a 100% Shell Company that was established in Brunei as a result of Royal Dutch Shell’s acquisition of New Zealand based Fletcher Challenge Energy in 2001.

From The Guardian:

Brunei is to begin imposing death by stoning as a punishment for gay sex and adultery from next week, as part of the country’s highly criticised implementation of sharia law.

From 3 April, people in the tiny south-east Asian kingdom will be subjected to a draconian new penal code, which also includes the amputation of a hand and a foot for the crime of theft. To be convicted, the crimes must be “witnessed by a group of Muslims”.

It was a directive of the Sultan of Brunei, Hassanal Bolkiah, who is one of the world’s richest leaders with a personal wealth of about $20bn (£15bn) and has held the throne since 1967. He described the implementation of the new penal code as “a great achievement”.

So Shell demonstrates a firm commitment to LGBT rights via ultra-woke initiatives in places where minorities have been treated without prejudice for at least a decade while they bankroll a monarch who decrees homosexuals must be stoned to death.

Similarly, Total caved in to a shakedown by Accenture and signed (pdf) an LGBT charter along with a whole load of other French companies. Meanwhile, here’s their CEO and other senior executives signing a deal with the Iranian government:

Here’s some news from Iran:

The Islamic Republic of Iran publicly hanged a 31-year-old Iranian man after he was found guilty of charges related to violations of Iran’s anti-gay laws, according to the state-controlled Iranian Students’ News Agency.

The unidentified man was hanged on January 10 in the southwestern city of Kazeroon based on criminal violations of “lavat-e be onf” – sexual intercourse between two men, as well as kidnapping charges, according to ISNA. Iran’s radical sharia law system prescribes the death penalty for gay sex.

While oil company HR departments demand acceptance and celebration of LGBT lifestyles from their staff, their bosses are complicit in propping up the most murderously homophobic regimes on earth. But then moral codes have always been for the plebs while the priestly caste gets a pass, haven’t they?

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When they go low, we go lower

Remember Jussie Smollett, the American actor/singer who claimed he’d been attacked by a couple of rednecks in downtown Chicago in the early hours one morning, only for it to emerge that he’d paid a couple of Nigerian lads to fill him in? He was staring down the barrel of serious criminal charges but whaddya know, they’ve been dropped.

Readers may recall that Smollett’s original claim had the entire Democratic presidential field rushing to his aid, and it seems his connections have come through once more. However, the Chicago PD and mayor are less than impressed:

In a striking news conference [which can be seen here – ed], the mayor and the police superintendent, Eddie Johnson, sharply criticized the State’s Attorney’s Office and the actor himself.

Mr. Emanuel said that Mr. Smollett’s celebrity had played a role in the decision, calling it “a whitewash of justice.”

“You cannot have, because of a person’s position, one set of rules apply to them and one set of rules apply to everybody else,” Mr. Emanuel said.

“Our officers did hard work, day in and day out, countless hours, working to unwind what actually happened that night,” he added. “The city saw its reputation dragged through the mud.”

Mr. Johnson said, “I think this city is still owed an apology.”

“At the end of the day,” he added, “it’s Mr. Smollett who committed this hoax.”

Nor are we finding much remorse from Smollett:

Exoneration or no, for Mr. Smollett, who maintained his innocence, the outcome could hardly have been better. After the hearing, he read a statement outside the courthouse without taking questions. He thanked his family, friends and “the incredible people of Chicago and all over the country and the world who have prayed for me, who have supported me.”

That’s right, he still maintains he’s innocent. And I wasn’t very surprised by this:

[T]he state’s attorney’s office had already drawn scrutiny for its handling of the case. The Chicago Tribune reported that after police department sources began leaking their doubts about Mr. Smollett to local reporters, Tina Tchen, a former chief of staff to Michelle Obama, had emailed Kimberly Foxx, the top prosecutor, saying the actor’s family had “concerns about the investigation.”

Firstly, why did Michelle Obama have a chief of staff? Secondly, far from embodying “class and grace” as his worshippers claim, the more I read about the Obamas the more they look like low-grade grifters, neck-deep in the sort of corruption that infests Chicago. If I were to be even more cruel I’d point out that Americans elected a half-African for a president who displayed African-style governance – including the prominent, high-spending wife and an inability to retire gracefully and silently.

Now on the one hand this is nothing new. The wealthy and connected were always subject to different laws from the rest of us – look at Edward Kennedy, for example. But on the other hand, now they’re not even pretending. They’re corrupt, and they don’t care who knows it. Also, I’m sure a lot of young black men will be contrasting Smullett’s fate under what passes for a justice system with their own were they to face similar charges. The American justice system is stacked against black men, and the sheer scale of gross injustices meted out against them should be a matter of priority for any governing party. Kim Kardashian, for all her faults, has done an admirable job in pushing Trump for prison reform, a bill which the president passed.

Which is ironic, don’t you think? The supposedly racist president Trump has signed a bill aimed at putting fewer black men in prison for non-violent crimes. What did Obama do to redress the balance in his eight years in charge? And now his wife’s mates are intervening in the justice system to ensure a wealthy celebrity gets sprung without charge despite overwhelming evidence that he’s guilty. It’s not surprising black Americans became so disappointed with Obama, and this latest incident will hardly have helped. While it’s probably too much to expect them to vote Republican, we can at least hope some will start to see that Democrats are not their friends either. What’s going to be really interesting is whether Kamala Harris can bring out the black vote. She’s on record as going all-in for Smullett, and her black credentials are sketchy to begin with. If she can’t, Trump’s a shoo-in for 2020.

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Body Che

Studying in Geneva I have occasion to cross paths with the sort of people who work in the supranational bodies headquartered here, including the various branches of the UN. They display a lofty air as they casually discuss their proposals on reshaping global society, dismissing the concerns of ordinary people as a simple matter of “lack of education”. Perhaps if the British had explained themselves more clearly they might still have an Empire? I blame the impenetrable provincial accents and a refusal on the part of uppity natives to learn from their masters.

Anyway, something I’ve come to realise is the more self-righteous and sure of their virtues a person is, the more likely they are to hold moral values ranging from questionable to despicable. I was therefore unsurprised to see this:


You can be sure the people who approved a flattering picture of Che Guevara for display in the United Nations building in Geneva make all the right noises in polite company regarding Donald Trump, Brexit, and gender equality. I have an opportunity to visit this place soon: I think I’ll pass.

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The Crying Game

Yesterday I had occasion to read the World Economic Forum’s Global Risks Report. As you would expect it’s largely focused around climate change hysteria, but also warns of “large scale involuntary migration”. What is not mentioned is what I think is a far greater risk to the stability of whole nations: large scale voluntary migration. But what really made me laugh was this passage on page 14:

There has been a period of renewed politicization around gender, sexism and sexual assault in the United States. The #MeToo movement, which began in October 2017, continued in 2018 and has also drawn attention to—and in some cases amplified— similar campaigns against sexual violence.

That a middle class political protest movement, which was as much about who gets to set the Democrat party agenda as it was sexual assault, should appear in a report on global risks tells you much about the worldview of those who compiled it. Then again, they might have observed half a million screaming harpies in pussy hats and concluded humanity is doomed.

Beyond being directly targeted with violence and discrimination, women around the world are also disproportionately affected by many of the risks discussed in the Global Risks Report, often as a result of experiencing higher levels of poverty and being the primary providers of childcare, food and fuel. For example, climate change means women in many communities must walk farther to fetch water.

While the men are slaughtered on the front lines of bloody wars.

Women often do not have the same freedom or resources as men to reach safety after natural disasters—in parts of Sri Lanka, Indonesia and India, men who survived the 2004 tsunami outnumbered women by almost three to one.

Okay, but:

According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), women are also more likely than men to have their jobs displaced by automation.

We’re probably not talking about the same women here, are we? The paragraph lurches between the fate of wealthy western women pushing a political agenda and the genuine hardship of those living in badly-governed countries in the developing world. The two should be dealt with separately, but they’ve been lumped together in order to paint a picture of women being under serious threat globally. They’re using the image of desperate African women having to walk miles for water to drum up sympathy for American women who will soon be replaced by the Samsung Powerskirt 3000. And I seem to recall Laurie Penny cackling with glee at the prospect of automation taking all the men’s jobs.

On top of reports like this, we also have gender diversity being rammed down our throats using unsubstantiated claims it produces better outcomes. In addition, despite being thoroughly debunked, the gender pay gap is still routinely cited as real and a result of discrimination. This is why I’m really not too bothered about stories like this:

Across the U.S. and in many places abroad, transgender athletes are breaking barriers in high school, college and pro sports and being embraced by teammates and fans. But resentments can still flare when transgender women start winning and dominating their sport.

And this:

Two male runners are continuing to dominate high school girls track in Connecticut.

High school juniors Terry Miller and Andraya Yearwood took first and second place in the state open indoor track championships Feb. 16, The Associated Press noted in a report Sunday. Both Miller and Yearwood are biological males who identify as transgender girls.

Miller argued that female runners should work harder, rather than complaining about unfairness, when forced to compete against male athletes who identify as transgender.

On the face of it this is insane, and in a serious society this wouldn’t be happening. But this is just a continuation of what the hardcore feminists started when they launched a war on men. If a handful of politically-motivated extremist women can invent all sorts of garbage to justify upending society for their personal benefit, others will follow suit. Feminists now upset that strapping lads are cleaning up in girls’ high-school athletics can hardly complain about inconsistency, intellectual dishonesty, and hidden agendas, can they? That’s been their stock and trade for decades and it continues to this day backed by corporations, governments, and supranational organisations as part of an industry worth billions of dollars.

I feel a bit sorry for the non-lunatic women who carried no water for hardcore feminism and are looking on with horror at what the trans activists are doing, but it’s not really my fight. If and when I can go through a week without gender politics being rammed down my throat with men told they need to make sacrifices so that privileged women they don’t know can be relieved of imaginary problems while benefiting materially, I may pick up the cudgels on their behalf. Until then, I don’t see why I should care. Women created this mess; they can solve it. Maybe the World Economic Forum can help?

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From the Balls of Montezuma

Staying on the topic of Alexandia Ocasio-Cortez, this amused:


It’s funny how the narrative of Europeans wiping out the natives and their descendants living on stolen land stops at the Mexican border. Presumably some think the indigenous peoples of central and south America were already speaking Spanish when the Conquistadors showed up and had names like, well, Ocasio-Cortez.

I have a theory that everyone wants to be an imperialist overlord, but criticism is reserved for those with the competence to actually carry it out. See this exchange, for example:


The Irish spend half the time moaning about British imperialism and the other half demanding Northern Ireland, Gibraltar, and the Falkland Islands be annexed by their neighbours against the wishes of the population. The irony in the case of Ocasio-Cortez is most Puerto Ricans are wishing the US would hurry up and annex them properly.

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Diversity for thee

You hear a lot of this sentiment these days:

The country’s top judge says her colleagues must become more diverse in order to better represent the public.

Lady Hale addressed the issue as she marked the centenary of the act that enabled women to enter profession.

The first female president of the supreme court called for the judiciary to increase its diversity to avoid the risk of being seen as ‘from another planet’.

This would include greater balance in gender representation at Britain’s highest court and quicker promoting for ethnic minorities and those from less privileged backgrounds, the Guardian reports.

A couple of months back I was at a seminar in which several ageing men on the stage signaled their virtue to the audience by bemoaning the gender balance of the panel, which was around 7:3 in favour of men. About a year ago I listened to another bunch of ageing men on a stage, this time in the auditorium of an oil company, saying they need to do more to promote women into senior positions. My immediate thought was, if these people considered the matter so pressing, why don’t they resign and hand their position to a more deserving female? Similarly, if pasty-white Lady Hale believes Britain’s judiciary should become more ethnically diverse, what better way to kick-start the process by replacing her with a minority?

You can be sure that anyone who has wormed their way onto a panel at a seminar, climbed the greasy pole up to executive management in an oil company, or backstabbed their way to becoming Britain’s top judge has only one person’s career in mind: their own. At every step of their career they would have sandbagged and outmaneuvered anyone who represented competition, be they white, brown, yellow, male, or female. When they were middle managers somewhere eyeing their next promotion they weren’t harping on about the need for greater representation or increased diversity. No, they were promoting themselves. But now the top job is securely under their belt and retirement is on the horizon, they want other people to sacrifice their career ambitions on the altar of diversity politics. The correct response is to either ignore their self-serving virtue-signaling, or to draw attention to their hypocrisy and mock them mercilessly.

Next time you hear someone calling for increased diversity in their organisation, you should ask why they haven’t resigned yet.

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One rule for thee…

Back in the early 2000s, Italy, Portugal, and Greece were being chastised and threatened with fines by the European Commission for breaking the Stability and Growth Pact, which aimed to limit the fiscal deficit of member states’ budget to 3% of GDP. Then something happened around 2001 which caused the French and Germans to blow their budgets and go on a borrowing spree, and all of a sudden the Stability and Growth Pact didn’t matter (see this chart for historical deficits). It became quite obvious that EU rules are only to be enforced against certain countries, and exceptions made when it came to France and Germany; those less charitable thought it quite obvious that the EU was run for the primary benefit of those two member states.

Fast forward 17 years and we had the European Commission refusing to approve Italy’s budget because it breaks the Stability and Growth Pact. Then a short time later French president Emmanuel Macron, with his back to the wall facing the might of the gilets jaunes, decided to throw an €8bn – €10bn bung at them in the hope of saving his presidency. France’s budget was already perilously close to the 3% limit, and this pushed it over the edge. So the European Commission is going to take action, right?

Heh:

The EU will accept a French budget deficit above the EU’s 3 percent ceiling in 2018 “as a one-time exception,” Budget Commissioner Günther Oettinger said in an interview published Thursday.

Now there’s a surprise, eh? If you follow the link and translate from the German, you find out why:

President Macron has lost authority with his budget for 2019, which exceeds the deficit limit of three percent. But he remains a strong supporter of the European Union.

Of course. The rules don’t matter provided you are France or Germany and you are a strong supporter of the EU. What a wonderful club. I can’t think why Britain voted to leave.

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Conflicts of interests

Nothing in this report surprises me:

A rift was growing between Britain and key allies yesterday as European diplomats pushed back on calls for a firmer response to Russia’s weekend naval clash with Ukraine. The fracture in the Western alliance sets the stage for tense exchanges when European, US, and Russian leaders meet at a G20 summit in Argentina later this week.

Anyone want to guess where the fault lines lie? Here’s one side:

Britain, Poland, and the Baltic States have urged other members of the EU 28 to impose extra measures when existing sanctions against Russia are renewed in December.

The calls have been backed by the US.

And here’s the other:

France and Germany, which brokered a ceasefire and tentative peace accord between Vladimir Putin, the Russian president, and Petro Poroshenko, the leader of Ukraine, in 2015, are understood to fear such a move could split the bloc and further inflame tensions.

So much for solidarity over the Skripal poisoning, then. One of the most bizarre spectacles in recent times has been the European media and its gullible consumers portraying Merkel and Macron as standing up for Europe against the Putin bogeyman, while Trump is portrayed as a Russian puppet. Yet whenever it comes to actual policy, Germany and France fall over themselves to avoid anything which might damage the commercial interests of their major firms in Russia, and the same media utters not a peep.

Regardless of what the correct approach to Russia is, the double-dealing on the part of Germany and France – saying one thing, doing the other – is inexcusable. Last week Macron was saying he wants an EU army to protect against, among other things, Russian aggression. Merkel’s approach to NATO, Trump, and Russia requires contortions which are seriously impressive for a woman of her age. The hypocritical, self-serving behaviour of France and Germany who, when it suits them, demand ever-more cooperation and integration from smaller EU states is one of the strongest arguments in favour of Brexit.

On that subject, I’m reminded of something I wrote in a post in April last year:

The Baltic states are completely reliant on Nato to keep the Russians out, which in this case means the United States. However, in diplomatic terms (and probably  a token military one as well) it also means the Brits. If we can imagine a scenario in a few years time when the Russians are massing tanks and troops on the borders of Estonia, Latvia, or Lithuania on some pretext and revving the engines noisily, Britain will be one of the countries they will be pleading with to intervene (meaning, persuade the United States to intervene). How Britain responds ought very much to depend on how the Baltic states behaved during the Brexit negotiations.

I’ve noticed that Estonians and Lithuanians have said very little during the Brexit negotiations, and the Latvians have been urging caution. I’m sure it’s occurred to them that with Britain out of the EU they suddenly become a lot more vulnerable to malign Russian influence, be it commercial or even military.

This is why I think the EU will ultimately fail. The European continent, and the islands off it, do have genuine shared interests and concerns but the EU is structured along very different lines. These conflicts are now coming to a head, and at some point in the near future people are going to be asked hard questions as to which alliances matter most to them. I expect it will take some pretty ugly scenes before they find an answer.

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Some More Equal Than Others

There’s a certain irony about this tweet:

I have no idea what a gender equality breakfast entails, but I wasn’t surprised to learn this particular one featured a commencement speech by Canadian man-child Justin Trudeau. I also don’t know what the purpose of the tweet was, but many responses believe it shows Trump, by arriving late, is a misogynist who has no respect for those present. Which is probably true, especially that last bit.

The irony, though, is that extremely privileged and wealthy men and women in positions of great power and influence held this breakfast in the name of gender equality. Now I would have thought the very presence around the table of Theresa May, Angela Merkel, and Christine Lagarde would have rendered the entire purpose moot, but apparently not. If there is an inequality that needs addressing in most if not all the societies represented at the G7 it is that which exists between the ruling classes and everyone else. Nowhere is this yawning chasm better demonstrated than by Christine Lagarde herself; she is the woman with the pink handkerchief in her blazer in the photo above, and head of the IMF. Here’s an article from 2016:

International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde has been convicted over her role in a controversial €400m (£355m) payment to a businessman.

French judges found Ms Lagarde guilty of negligence for failing to challenge the state arbitration payout to the friend of former French President Nicolas Sarkozy.

Yes, that’s right: she has a criminal conviction after passing a bung.

The Court of Justice of the Republic, a special tribunal for ministers, could have given Ms Lagarde up to one-year in prison and a €13,000 fine.

But they didn’t. Instead:

The 60-year-old, following a week-long trial in Paris, was not given any sentence and will not be punished.

Oh. How fortunate for Ms Lagarde!

I remember when this happened, and the authorities were almost apologetic in their treatment of this pillar of the French elite. It explains why the charge was one of negligence and not the more serious corruption, and why she walked away scot-free, smiles and handshakes all-round despite having been found guilty. And here she is, this convicted criminal whose privileged position allowed her to evade punishment and even keep her job at the IMF, hosting an “equality” breakfast.

Let me ask, if it were you or I who’d done what she’d done, do you think we’d have kept our jobs and be attending breakfasts at jamborees? Or would be languishing in a jail somewhere? Equality, indeed.

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