Category Archives: Europe

Heresies About The Hebdo Headache

Europe, Free Speech, Islam

“Heresies About The Hebdo Headache” is the current column, now on WND:

WINNING IN THE WEST. A French “documentary maker”—a title everyone with a camera assumes these days—told CNN’s Anderson Cooper that the West was winning. The docu-dude felt that the people of Europe were displaying a winning resistance to the imposition of Islamic blasphemy laws.

How was the West vanquishing the enemies of free speech? In response to the craven, yet characteristic, massacre of staff at the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo, hundreds of thousands of Europeans—in Barcelona, Brussels, London, Paris, Nice, Lyon—came out en masse to plonk teddy bears on sidewalks and point pens and pencils to the heavens.

“Winning,” as Charlie Sheen would say.

The winners also flaunted their feelings with placards that read: “Je Suis Charlie” and “Not Afraid.” The CNN signatories to the dhimma “pact of surrender” celebrated the triumphant “outpouring of art in response” to the executions in Paris. Meek, wishy-washy drawings popped up everywhere. An example: Patrick Chappatte’s New York Times cartoon, in which a sunken-chested white male sheds a tear, holds a flower. The caption: “Without humor we are all dead.” Fierce.

The terrorists in the midst of the winners were in for more blows. A plural option was added to the rallying cry “Je Suis Charlie”: We are Charlie Hebdo—Nous Sommes Charlie. “Say no to terrorism” was another winning slogan.

Then there was the showy and meaningless parade of parasites in Paris, from which Onan No. 1 was absent:

The world’s leaders united against murder, an insight that was already well within the ken of leaders of the ancient world (Ten Commandments?). The charade of charlatans featured the very people responsible for legislation that authorized the round up, around them, of “54 people … for hate speech or other acts insulting religious faiths, or for cheering the men who carried out the attacks.”

THE SWORD IS MIGHTIER THAN THE PEN. No wonder author Martin Amis spoke of clichés of the mind and the heart. The orgy of sentimentality and helplessness came with its share of clichés. Particularly enveloping in its preposterousness was “the pen is mightier than the sword.”

Remember the iconic scene in the film “Raiders of the Lost Ark”? Challenged to a duel by a scimitar-wielding, keffiyeh-clad Arab, Indiana Jones draws a pistol and dispatches the swordsman without further ado.

In my (allegorical) more accurate adaption, the roles are reversed. The Prophet Mohammad’s avenger faces his somersaulting Western offender, who comes at him with a pen, convoluting about freedom of expression, inquiry and conscience. How does Mohammad’s mercenary respond to the penman’s lofty ululations? As Indiana Jones did: He aims his automatic weapon and drops the prophet’s offender.

Before Charlie Hebdo came the 12 Danish Jyllands-Posten cartoons. In 2005, JP drew cartoons that joined Muhammad to the violence that disfigures the Muslim world. While clucking about the sanctity of free speech, countless commentators climbed into the Danes. The illustrators were called juvenile, obnoxious, Islamophobic, even immoral. They were accosted for doing nothing to advance enlightened argument; of acting in “terrifically bad taste”; and indulging in “gratuitous provocation, not worthy of publication,” to quote some of the pieties disgorged by politicians and pundits.

Having been where Charlie Hebdo finds itself today—a catalyst for eruptions across the Islamic Ummah (now innervating the West)—Flemming Rose, JP’s cultural editor and publisher, knows of what he speaks. He informed BBC’s HARDTalk that the sword is mightier than the pen. “Violence works.” The great Danes of JP will not reprint “Charlie Hedbo’s post-attack front cover.”

Winning. …

The complete column is “Heresies About The Hebdo Headache”, now on WND.


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In Paris, A Parade Of Parasites; Charade Of Charlatans

Barack Obama, Europe, Free Speech, Media, Politics, Propaganda, Terrorism

President Barack Obama was a no-show at the showy and meaningless parade of parasites in Paris, where world leaders united against murder, an insight that was already well within the ken of leaders of the ancient world (Ten Commandments?). NYT:

More than a million people joined over 40 presidents and prime ministers on the streets of Paris on Sunday in the most striking show of solidarity in the West against the threat of Islamic extremism since the Sept. 11 attacks.

“A storm in a D.C. tea cup” is how CNN has chosen to depict the absence of their favorite onan from the parade. David Gergen of the Obama Channel commented on how “refreshing” it was for this administration to “admit [he] messed up.

To paraphrase the Paul Simon lyrics about an old lover: Still crazy about him after all these years.

Myself, I don’t give a tinker’s toss about the march of our tormentors in Paris. The only thought that crossed my mind at the charade of charlatans had to do with al Qaeda’s incompetence. Why do they only ever hit on innocents? … But since unfettered speech is no longer a natural right in the West, because of legislation passed throughout the free world—I shall remain mum.


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Best Commentary So Far About Charlie Hebdo Headache

BAB's A List, Britain, Europe, Free Speech, IMMIGRATION, Left-Liberalism, Multiculturalism, Paleolibertarianism, Terrorism

Penned by friend and fellow paleolibertarian Sean Gabb of the British Libertarian Alliance, the following piece is simply the best commentary so far on the Charlie Hebdo headache.

Hot Air and the Paris Atrocities
By Sean Gabb

For the avoidance of doubt, I will begin by saying that the murders this week at Charlie Hebdo were a barbarous crime, and deserve the strongest punishment allowed by law. This being said, the smug chanting of the politicians and media people is getting on my nerves. Here, without further introduction, are the more objectionable mantras:

Je suis Charlie

I will repeat that this was a barbarous crime. But there seem to be barbarous crimes and barbarous crimes. Suppose the attack had not been on a cultural leftist magazine, but on the headquarters of the Front National, and the victims had been Francine le Pen and the party leadership. Would all those city squares have filled with people reciting Je suis le Front National? I hardly think so. Nor would the media have given blanket and uncritical coverage.

Indeed, we had our answer before the gunmen had opened fire. When Pim Fortuyn and Theo van Gogh and Lee Rigby were murdered no less barbarously, we were all urged to moderate our response. In the first two cases, we were told, with more than the occasional nod and wink, that the victims had brought things on themselves. As for the third, the protest demonstrations were broken up by the police.

Cultural leftists have the same right not to be murdered as the rest of us. So far as the present lamentations indicate, they are seen by the directors of public opinion as having a greater right.

We will Never Give up Our Right to Freedom of Speech

The continuing hymn of praise to freedom of speech would sound better if it were seriously meant. I believe that the writers and cartoonists at Charlie Hebdo had the moral right to say whatever they pleased about Islam, or anything else. But I also believe that Luke O’Farrell and Garron Helm should not have been sent to prison for being rude to or about Jews. Nick Griffin should not have been prosecuted for saying less against Islam than was published in Charlie Hebdo. The Reverend Alan Clifford should not have been threatened with prosecution in 2013, when he handed out leaflets at a gay pride march in Norwich. Almost every day, in England alone, someone gets into trouble for opening his mouth. Where for them are the defenders of freedom of speech, now more fashionably than bravely holding up pencils or waving candles?

I and my colleagues at the Libertarian Alliance can praise freedom of speech, because we are there for the people mentioned above. Just about everyone else I have seen on the television is a hypocrite. In general, we are free to say only what the authorities want to hear. Even when the law does not cover dissent, there are administrative or economic punishments. See, for example, the UKIP members who were denied the right to foster children, or the difficulty that dissident writers have to find paid work.

These were Cowardly Crimes

The men who shot up the Charlie Hebdo offices are not cowards. They took a considerable risk, and it is generally believed that they will not let themselves be taken alive. This is part of what makes them and their like so dangerous. The Sinn Fein/IRA terrorists were cowards. Their speciality was to plant time bombs in shop toilets, and then run away before they went off. These killers seem to regard themselves as already half way to the company of the seventy two virgins they were promised. There is nowhere they will not go, and nothing they will not do – they and those like them. To call them cowards is a comforting falsehood.

These were Senseless Crimes

The only senseless crime is one that has no evident purpose, or is unlikely to achieve it. The purpose of the Charlie Hebdo killings was to punish outrages against Moslem sensibilities, and to deter their repetition. Can anyone say they failed, or will fail? Some outlets of the mainstream media have republished some of the less offensive cartoons. But it was difficult not to, and there is safety in numbers. From now on, Moslems abroad and in Europe can expect a still more delicate handing of their sensibilities than is already the case. No one wants to be murdered, and one of the surest ways to avoid being murdered will be not to say anything untoward about Mohammed or his alleged teachings.

I now feel obliged to comment on mass-immigration from the Third World. Anyone who said this would be other than a disaster must have been a fool or a villain. It has forced down working class incomes. It has raised housing costs for everyone. It has increased crime and welfare dependency. It has Balkanised politics and administration and law. It has been the excuse for a police state. I am not a violent or an uncharitable man. I am committed to an abstract and universalist ideology. I do not object to a certain porosity of borders. But, like most Jews in Israel, or most Chinese in China – or like most people in all times and places – I regard every square inch of my country as the birthright of my people, and do not look favourably on levels of immigration that seem likely, within the next few generations, to dispossess us of that birthright. Yet this is where we now are, in England, in France, and in many other European and European-settled countries. I have no convincing answers to the problem we face. All I can do is predict one of two outcomes:

First, present trends will continue, and growing weight of numbers, and a greater willingness to resort to violence, will bring about the transformation of our societies in the image of the newcomers.

Second, there will be a nativist reaction, attended by expulsion and the removal of citizenship rights for those allowed to stay, and an authoritarian political settlement.

I do not look forward to either outcome. But, thanks to the conscious or negligent treason of our rulers, it seems likely to be one or the other of these. Anyone who can suggest a less unpleasant outcome that is other than wishful thinking will have at least my gratitude.

The question now outstanding is whether these killings will only contribute to the breakdown of the multicultural illusion, or whether they will be seen, by future historians, as one of its key events. Are they in the same dividing category as the defenstrations in Prague or the Oath in the Tennis Court? Or will the continued chanting of the mantras discussed above keep everything under control? Does the continuing uproar in France mean that something has begun there of wider significance than the murder of a dozen cultural leftists?


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Only Dutchman Geert Wilders Edifies

Europe, Free Speech, IMMIGRATION, Islam, Jihad

It is to be expected. The only edifying words to come from a politician, worldwide, in response to the craven, yet characteristic massacre, today, of staff at the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo, come from Dutch parliamentarian Geert Wilders:

The West is at war and should de-Islamize.

“… Wilders, leader of the anti-Islam Party of Freedom PVV … responded quickly via Twitter. ‘Just requested a debate with Prime Minister Rutte after the terrible attack in Paris,’ he tweeted.”

While Wilders’ full statement, via Vlad Tepes, is not endorsed here in full—it does contain more than a kernel of truth regarding the solution to “Islam’s bloody borders,” in the worlds of Harvard political scientist Samuel Huntington.

Said Geert Wilders: “We have to close our borders, reinstate border controls, get rid of political correctness, introduce administrative detention, and stop immigration from Islamic countries. We must defend ourselves. Enough is enough.”

If experience tells us anything, there are certainly better candidates for immigration to the West—minority South Africans, perhaps?—than practitioners of the religion of peace.


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EU Government Is A Monopoly, Not Google

Business, Capitalism, Economy, EU, Europe

The economic sluggards of Europe don’t much like competition; it’s too much like hard work. Competition means that a business has to please the only real boss: a picky customer with many options. Google has raised the ire of the European competition and its proxy, the European Parliament, which “overwhelmingly backed a motion urging antitrust regulators to break up Google.”

“Google’s dominance,” writes Jörg Brunsmann for DW, “didn’t arise from the company employing unfair measures to push its competitors out of the market. It’s become a market leader because of its innovation.”

Put more precisely: Google has arrived at its market share by pleasing search-engine users.

I was part of a worthy group of Austrian economists who published “The Microsoft Corporation In Collision With Antitrust Law,” in The Journal of Social, Political and Economic Studies (Winter 2001, Vol. 26, No. 1.). In section (4) for which I was responsible (“Economic Freedom, Monopoly and the Government,”), I wrote:

Antitrust legislation considers a large market share or a concentration in the market to signify both monopoly and predatory practices on the part of a company. As such, the antitrust chimera is based on discredited theories about competition. Relying as it does on a model of ideal or perfect rather than rivalrous competition, the legislation aims at a market neatly carved among competitors (32).

The principle applies to Google.

In Austrian economics, moreover, a large market share does not a monopoly make. “The only true monopolies are government monopolies. A company is a monopoly only when it can forcibly prohibit competitors from entering the market, a feat only ever made possible by state edict. In a truly free market, competition makes monopoly impossible.” (From “Media Concentration Is Not A Threat to Free Expression, Government Is.”)


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NATO’s Worth Nothing

Europe, Foreign Policy, Iraq, Islam, Jihad, Middle East, States' Rights

Why doesn’t he provide a solution to the siege by the Islamic State (ISIS) of Kobani (or Ayn al-Araba in Arabic), a Kurdish city in the Kurdish regions of northern Syria? He is Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey’s president, who has issued a dire warning to the West: “dropping bombs from the air will not provide a solution … the time [has] come to ‘cooperate for a ground invasion.’”

Turkey is a NATO ally with a sizable, modern army, quite capable of tackling ISIS. The problem Turkey, the US, the European Union and NATO face stems from these great centralizers’ opposition to the PKK. The PKK is a long-standing Kurdish, separatist movement, which the US, Turkey and the rest aim to eliminate or undermine, for obvious reasons. Statists struggle with secession, separation or States’ Rights.

National Post:

The Turkish leader is strongly mistrusted by the Kurds of Turkey and Syria. Many accuse his government — anxious about Turkey’s own Kurdish separatist movement — of conniving with ISIS and of failing to act to prevent it committing atrocities against the Kurds in Syria. Meanwhile, Washington is becoming increasingly frustrated with its NATO ally. There’s growing angst about Turkey dragging its feet to act to prevent a massacre less than a mile from its border,” an unnamed U.S. official told the New York Times. “After all the fulminating about Syria’s humanitarian catastrophe, they’re inventing reasons not to act to avoid another catastrophe. “This isn’t how a NATO ally acts while hell is unfolding a stone’s throw from their border.”

If the US is so cut up about Turkey’s craven indifference to the Kurds, it could collude with NATO members to strip Turkey of its NATO membership, for what that’s worth.

Excoriated though he was, in his attempt to “absolve the US of any guilt in the matter,” to quote an RT expert, Vice President Joe Biden had a point. Via RT:

“our allies in the region were our largest problem in Syria,” elaborating that Turkey, Saudi Arabia and the UAE were “so determined to take down Assad,” that they started a “proxy Sunni-Shia war.” Biden went on saying that “they poured hundreds of millions of dollars, and tens of thousands of tons of weapons into anyone who would fight against Assad. Except that the people who were being supplied were al-Nusra and Al-Qaeda and the extremist elements of jihadis coming from other parts of the world.”

DER SPIEGEL on the quagmire:

The country has been strangely reserved when it comes to dealing with the Islamic State. It is the neighboring country that is perhaps most threatened by the jihadist fighters, but it has refrained thus far from joining US President Barack Obama’s anti-terror coalition, even if Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan strongly hinted over the weekend that it might do so soon. When it comes to combatting the Islamic State and putting an end to the Syrian civil war, Turkey has a key role to play.

The government in Ankara had justified its hesitancy by pointing to the dozens of Turkish diplomats taken hostage by the Islamic State in Mosul. Now that they have been released, however, all eyes are on Turkey to see what responsibilities it might take on. On the way back to Turkey from the United Nations General Assembly in New York, Erdogan told reporters that his country is now prepared to join the coalition. At the World Economic Forum meeting in Istanbul on Sunday he added, in reference to the fight against the Islamic State: “We cannot stay out of this.”


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