Om VamPus

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er Heidi Nordby Lunde, feminist, aktivist og Høyre-dame. Mer om Heidi. Kontakt meg på VamPus [a] gmail.com. Merk at kommentarer på innlegg eldre enn fem dager blir moderert - ene og alene for at jeg da får varsel om nye kommentarer. Leser ikke kommentarfeltet på gamle innlegg så ofte. Skriver du som anonym er sjansen stor for at det blir slettet sammen med spam.

tirsdag, februar 28, 2006

Paying the Dane-geld

In the good old days, when men were men and women did their laundry, our forefathers ravaged the coasts of England in a quest to improve the general gene pool. Our Danish neighbours apparently had a slightly better idea; avoiding the hard work of raping and pillaging by asking for a ransom not to do so. This was called asking for Dane-geld.

VamPus has been invited to participate in a debate on the freedom of speech by the Oslo Union of Journalists, who tastefully has used a picture of her as a bull's eye in the invitation to all their members (which, I assume, includes most journalists in Oslo). The background is the publishing of the now infamous cartoons of the muslim prophet Muhammad. The vignette of the debate is "Cowardly editors or irresponsible bloggers?" The irony of the name of Rudyard Kipling's poem is hopefully not lost on all. The point is; start excusing one of your democratic rights, and you'll find that "the end of that game is oppression and shame, and the nation that plays it is lost."

I owe this to David Young, who I met at Pokers wedding;

IT IS always a temptation to an armed and agile nation,
To call upon a neighbour and to say:-
"We invaded you last night-we are quite prepared to fight,
Unless you pay us cash to go away."

And that is called asking for Dane-geld,
And the people who ask it explain
That you've only to pay 'em the Dane-geld
And then you'll get rid of the Dane!

It is always a temptation to a rich and lazy nation,
To puff and look important and to say:-
"Though we know we should defeat you, we have not the time to meet you.
We will therefore pay you cash to go away."

And that is called paying the Dane-geld;
But we've proved it again and again,
That if once you have paid him the Dane-geld
You never get rid of the Dane.

It is wrong to put temptation in the path of any nation,
For fear they should succumb and go astray,
So when you are requested to pay up or be molested,
You will find it better policy to say:-

"We never pay any-one Dane-geld,
No matter how trifling the cost;
For the end of that game is oppression and shame,
And the nation that plays it is lost!"

If the choice is to be a coward or "irresponsible" in the defense of freedom, the latter suits me just fine!

29 kommentarer:

Anonym sa...

Men er VamPus den rette til å snakke om ytringsfrihet når hun aktiviseres KUN for å støtte de som er enige med henne (f.eks. hennes syn på Islam), men ikke når noen blir fengslet i Europa for å uttrykke sin egen tro?

seilern sa...

Det var litt av et bomskudd fra Jounalistlaget, å lage en blink av folk som blir truet på livet!

Generelt sett hyggelig at det i denne debatten har kommet frem noen fortsatt kjemper for prinsipper som ytringsfrihet som sak, heller enn å fokusere på ytringer som man liker eller misliker. Den anonyme kommentaren foran, viser nok en person som ikke har fått med seg prinsippet:

Ytringene dine kan jeg mislike, men din rett til å ytre dem vil jeg forsvare.

VamPus sa...

Anonym; hvorfor må VamPus dedikere bloggen sin til kun en sak? Hvis det er Irving du sikter til, så forsvarer jeg hans rett til å ytre seg og tror det er bomskudd å fengsle han. Å nekte meninger vi ikke liker er ikke bare moralsk galt, men vi skaper grobunn for noe som burde vært tatt tak i en åpen og fri debatt.

Ytringsfriheten må være absolutt, ellers er den ikke en frihet, kun en mulighet til å ytre seg under visse omstendigheter - og da tror jeg faktisk jeg har svart på det spørsmålet en gang for alle.

Seilern; skal forsvare Oslo Journalistlags rett til lage blink av meg jeg - mennesker uten ryggrad klarer vel neppe å forsvare seg selv..

MGL sa...

As I think I've said a million times in the course of the free speech-brouhaha, those of us opposing the publication of the drawings are *not* opposing freedom of speech. We're just calling the publishers of the drawings idiots, in the proper sense of the word.

Thinking you have to post the picture to be pro-freedom of speech is an incredibly fallacious argument. We're all down with Voltaire, we just don't like insulting the weak and defenseless for no reason in particular other than it being legal for us to do so, that's all. Call me crazy.

Kjetil Johansen sa...

Lykke til på onsdag, VamPus!

Dersom ikke jobbmengden spiser meg opp - og det kan se litt stygt ut akkurat nå - så skal jeg på møtet selv.

VamPus sa...

If you by the weak and defenseless means the people who phoned in death threats and torched the Danish and Norwegian embassies, I think I'll just continue to post these pictures. I'm not saying that the ones opposing them are against freedom of speach, but doesn't understand what freedom of speach actually means.

If you think I'm insensitivem and therefore shouldn't have posted the pictures - that is another discussion.

Do you think we'd have such an (relatively) open and liberal christian church if pictures, texts and films hadn't challenged the religious dogmas? Do you think that "Life of Brian" or blasphemic texts was less hurtful for christians? Or should extreme muslims be treated with more respect - and if so - why?

People have been jailed and executed for blasphemy against christianity. One of the reasons we stopped doing that is that couragous people never stopped publishing critical or satirical pictures, plays and texts.

There is no intellectual courage in attacking christianity any more - everybody does it. Challenging political and religious dogmas wherever you may find them, however,is.

Kosialist sa...

Skal dette sendes på TV tro?

VamPus sa...

Kosialist: neppe..

Milton Marx sa...

MGL said "we just don't like insulting the weak and defenseless for no reason in particular other than it being legal for us to do so, that's all.

The weak and defenseless are the ones that killed van Gogh? The ones that shot Nygård? The ones that made it so scary to make drawings to a childrens book that nobody dared to, unless they could be anonymous?

Have you no decency?

MGL sa...

Don't you go quoting Welch at me, Milton. If you really want to go down that particular road, the allegory sides with me.

Let me take a detour here. Do you know set theory? It's the study of what designated objects belong to which linguistic/mathematical category. For instance, let's say we have set A, which is all people offended by the cartoons. Then we have set B, which is a subset of set A, which is all of the people who are willing to take murderous violent action to avenge the publication of the cartoons. Set A minus set B = set C, which is all the people offended by the cartoons but unwilling to take violent action in retaliation.

Let's say that set A is roughly equal to 200.000 people (rough number of muslims in Denmark), that set B is roughly equal to 100-200 people, and that set C, then, is equal to 199.800 people. Is it fair to call group A violent? Are we not, then, in effect calling group C (a non-violent group) violent? Can we give a group a description which only certain of its members have? No. There's a word for that, and it is prejudice.

I've seen and talked to the muslim minority in Denmark and Norway. Yes, they are weak - that's what being a minority is mostly about. Yes, they are (mostly) defenseless, because nobody speaks their cause. Yes, they're beset on all sides by a society which only barely tolerates them and occasionally lashes out at them, turns the public discourse against them.

You're all assuming that violence is a first resort for these people. I'm telling you it's a representation of the fact that there are no other means of expression. The fight is not between muslims in general and the police, it is between an uneducated, poor, socio-cultural minority and the society which refuses to let them in. They don't have the education neccessary to see other channels open to them, and the political path has been solidly closed for years now.

Publishing the cartoons, for Jyllands-Posten, was not a defense of freedom of speech. It was the latest strike in a coordinated, decade-long attack on the immigrant population in Denmark. Anybody who reads Danish papers knows - or ought to know - this.

Kjartan sa...

The problem with using Set-theory on this case is that you yourself are using assumptions as your basis to define the different categories. For instance, how can you be certain that only 200 out of 200 000 people support violence? In a survey recently conducted in the UK, almost 40 percent expressed sympathy with the London-bombers. What makes you think that the Muslim minority in Denmark are any different? (Of course, sympathy doesn’t imply violence, but it creates a basis for the violent to thrive in)

Also, the other unsubstantiated assumption you make is that the cartoons are not published in defence of the freedom of speech, but is a part of a coordinated attack on a “weak” minority. Do you have anything to substantiate this claim with? (To me, this sounds dangerously like a political slogan, more than an analysis of current events in Denmark)

And as for nobody speaking up for this weak minority; I can’t seem to open a newspaper these days without reading commentaries from a wide selection of (mostly white and Norwegian) writers, all in favour of demolishing a freedom hard fought and won, in order to defend the defenceless immigrant population. Hardly a group lacking champions?

Anonym sa...

Yoy are speaking generalities which I'am unable to concretise:
What exactly do you mean by weak?
Are they unintelligent, have weak hearts or what?
In what sense are they weak?

They are defenseless, against what exactly? What's the threat
and what is their cause which nobody speaks? I'm a blond ateist
What's my cause and who speaks it?

What do you mean by saying that society barely tolerates them
and refusing to let them in? Do you see society as some kind of living entity or consisting
of individuals? If so which individuals are doing what to whom?
How can I (the blond Ateist) letting somebody in? Into what?

Please clearify and concreticese.

Ragnar D

Anonym sa...

I am eagerly awaiting Set C's condemnation of Set B. Time and time again, they have been invited to do so, but to no avail. Only a small Set D, consisting of "secular" or non-believers do so, and with substantial risk to their lives.

-Simon

Anonym sa...

Exactly.

Anonym sa...

MGL should look to reality instead of set theory, let the facts lead him where logic dictates instead of derailing prudent sense with obscure Ivory-Tower calculations performed without factual basis.

The fact remains that no one claims all Muslims are violent. However, most moderate Muslims are, for now, silent passive voices being led by the Islamists, their stormtroopers and intimidations (By Islamists I mean those who advocate the use of violence to set up an Islamic theocracy, and those who themselves will use violence to achieve this goal).

We saw the same silent majority phenomenon in Germany prior to WW2: most Germans were moderate and did not want all-out war nor industrial annihilation of Jews, if asked directly. But they followed their moral philosophy accepted by faith; that individualism is evil; Du bist Nichts, Dein Got ist Alles, Gemeinnutz bevor Eigennutz etc. All slogans the Islamists use today. When Chancellor Merkel remarked that the European appeasement of the the 30's is happening again in the Western appeasement of nuke seeking islamo-fascists of Iran, she knew what she was talking about.

But turning again to our own county: Who can really blame most moderate Muslims in Norway for being paralyzed and not standing up for the Islamist attack on Western freedom - including the freedom of the Muslim immigrants - given that most Norwegian intellectuals do not either (except a few decent one's one the left)? They know they will risk being killed, that their remaining families in their home countries will be at serious risk, if they attack Islamists in Norway and the Islamist regimes. And they know that the Norwegian government is a weak appeaser and will not do everything in its power to protect them. So, I'm not blaming them for not putting their heads on the block. But oh dear how we need them to educate their own (and most Norwegians) and spread the happy message of freedom and right to speak your own mind.

In Denmark however - due to the honest and hard debate over Western rights vs. Islamists attacks on freedom - the moderate Muslims have finally stepped forward to challenge the monopoly on representing Muslims hitherto held by the Islamists. For this their leader Naser Khader of "Moderate Muslimer" must live under 24 hours police protection because he would otherwise be killed (As other Muslim ideological enemies if Islamism must also face such threats, see for instance the case of Ayaan Hirsi Ali).

You sir, are not on the side of the week: the week are those fugitives from Islamism that have escaped to Europe from vicious persecution in their own barbaric totalitarian Muslim countries.

Once here they find themselves again persecuted by Islamists that multi-culturalists and moral relativist appeasers like you sanction and our governments let reign free to intimidate and threaten. Once again they must on stand alone while the average citizen looks on in passivity.

If you side with the weak then side with those oppressed moderate Muslims who in your own country and Europe at large must live in constant fear of their life for speaking their own mind and defending liberty. The ideological enemy is Islamism - a religious political philosophy - and their representatives in Europe are so strong that they have the power of piece by piece undermining our Liberty. What is happening in Holland and England will spread if not stopped.

The ideological Islamist movement has it's stormtroopers, those who do the dirty work for them. The movement itself often distance themselves from the terrorists in order to be able to spread their ideology of hatred unhindered. But don't be fooled. It's the ideologists who make the terror and intimidation possible; not the other way around.

Our home-grown politically correct Appeasers side inadvertently with the strong and violent Islamist movement in Europe and they attack our society for being cruel to them, when what they should do is criticize our governments pathetic inability to defend liberty and be proud of our values. As for the vile persecution of the courageous Muslim defenders of Liberty, you the politically correct remain silent.

MGL, Check your premises, are you sure you are on the right side? The oppressed and persecuted Muslim minorities defending liberty would disagree.

MVH
Kai Bugge

MGL sa...

(Deep breath)

Kjartan: I forgot to say that I’m obviously not claiming that my fictional number, chosen as an example, has any relationship to the actual size of set B, since that would be dishonest of me. I merely said that set B is smaller by several powers of ten, as should be obvious from the situation in Denmark. My point was merely that you can’t hold set C responsible for the actions of set B, merely because they both partake in group A. In the same way that we, say, don’t hold the pope responsible for the actions of the IRA, merely because both the pope and the IRA claim to be or are catholic. In the same way, you can call group C (most of the Muslims in Denmark) a weak and defenceless minority despite the fact that group B is not defenceless.

As for 40% expressing sympathy for the London bombings, and that number creating a basis for violence… well, no:

“Intelligence indicates that the number of British Muslims actively engaged in terrorist activity, whether at home or abroad or supporting such activity, is extremely small and estimated at less than 1%.” (Source: London Times, quoting a government report)

What they probably were expressing was sympathy for the terrorist’s stance against the foreign policies of the US & UK, or their position on the Israel question. I AM assuming that numbers in Denmark are lower, because the UK is widely known to have one of the most extreme populations in Europe. I still don’t have numbers, though.

My other assumption, that Jyllands-Posten is engaged in an aggressive campaign on the immigrant minorities in Denmark, is a well-known fact, and is based on having had the dubious pleasure of reading said paper. It has consistently over the past ten years (since I first read it) given disproportional voice to those who oppose immigration, disproportionately covered any case in which an immigrant has committed crimes, vs. similar crimes being done by native Danish people, etc. etc. But mostly, I’m upset about the language they’ve used. It’s become ok to use absolutely horrible words to describe immigrants in general in the public sphere, because of papers like J-P. This is not a political slogan, Kjartan. It is an empirical discourse analysis, which is one of the few things I actually have papers saying I’m qualified to do.

Take a look at this, for instance.. Count the number of those quotes coming from Jyllands-Posten, and then count the number coming from any other paper.
And as for demolishing freedom of speech: God, no. Nobody is saying that. Like I just said earlier, we just don’t want it to be used for populist warmongering. And the point is not that left wing intellectuals and editors are defending the minorities now (which I see as a good thing), but the fact that the political sphere, the press and the populists have *not* been doing so. I see this as symbolic of a deep moral deficiency.
Ragnar D: I’m *obviously* not saying that the Muslims are unintelligent. I’m saying that they are, legally, culturally and economically, a repressed minority with very few means to escape that situation.

Me, I’m a sort-of brownish-haired European atheist. Our “cause” is “spoken” by the fact that everything in our system works easier for people like you and me, and that people mostly don’t assume things about the group we belong to. We don’t have a “cause” and therefore no need to speak it. Because everything works fine for us, we – meaning you – assume that it works fine for everybody else.

As for society, well, that’s a difficult issue. Society is *both* a bunch of individuals and a bunch of structures created by the motion and opinions of all of these individuals, and the communications between them. It’s hard to imagine both at the same time, but that’s the way things are. I recommend Thomas Hobbes’ book *Leviathan* for you. It’s freely available online.

Simon: Set C *doesn’t have to* condemn set B, as they are not responsible for their actions. Also, set C has no single voice. There’s no minister of muslim affairs in Denmark who can speak on behalf of them, no? This is like asking all Danish people to condemn the cartoons. I can’t demand it. I’d like it if they did, but how exactly would they do it? And also, why should they, when really only a few Danish people were responsible for the publication of the cartoons? This argument is fallacious and silly and I don’t understand why right-wingers keep putting it in play.

God, this is long. I’m sorry about all this, but I feel that there are too many bad arguments floating around out there.

Steinbukken sa...

Excellent, Kai, you hit the nail on the head. It is we who side with the moderate muslims, the democratic muslims, who side with the weak and the persecuted in this debate.

Good luck in the debate, VamPus!

MGL sa...

Hey, Bugge. Didn't see your comment before I posted.

You give me a long reply, and I'm too tired to give you one of equal length, so here is just a short one (sorry):

We're all appeasing someone. You say that instead of siding with those who would destroy our civil liberties etc., I should side with those moderate muslims who live under fear from Islamist extremism.

And to your argument, I say mu.

You say this as though it is an either-or proposition. I say that to see this is as an either-or proposition is the root of the problem. There is no need to "take sides" here. I hate islamofascism just as much as I hate populist demagogues who turn the tide of public opinion against our ethnic minorities and incite cultural clashes like the one we're experiencing now.

Reading this whole conflict like freedom of speech vs. evil Islamists is just plain too simple. It's a question of both larger/more complex things, like populism, cultural structures, negative feedback loops etc. and of much much simpler things, like common courtesy and dialogue.

So I think that by choosing this viewpoint, you are appeasing another party in this: the populists.

Btw, til de som kan lese dansk, så er dette en bra artikkel fra Politiken om Jyllands-Posten.

Milton Marx sa...

Mengdelære er morsomme greier, du! Theo van Gogh er død, og vi er skjønt enige om at mer enn en milliard muslimer ikke drepte han! Det hadde vært litt spenstig hvis litt over en milliard muslimer fordømte mordet på han også.

Man får ikke lov til å si at man er redd for onde muslimer, men det er fullt mulig å si at dansker er onde.

Det er jo flott at du sier at du leser danske aviser, men snakker du helt sant?

Hvordan kan det være at du glemmer å nevne Naser Khader, innvandreren og folketingsmannen som har stiftet organisasjonen "Demokratiske Muslimer" i Danmark. Det sies faktisk at denne nystiftede gruppen reelt har en langt større tilhengerskare enn imam Laban. Khader føler seg krenket av de radikale muslimene og Saudi-Arabia. Godt gjort å ikke få øye på han i det danske pressebildet.

Flertallet av danske muslimer følte seg ikke krenket av JPs tegninger. Egyptiske muslimer følte seg heller ikke voldsomt krenket, i og med at det ikke ble noe oppstyr da en egyptisk avis trykte bildene midt under ramadan. Muslimene ble faktisk ikke sinte før imam-gutta fra Køben viste frem et bilde av en fransk bilmekaniker utkledt som gris, og påstod at det var Muhammed. Det bildet var aldri trykt i Jyllands-Posten, og dets vei fra å være et pressebilde til å bli et bilde av Muhammed er totalt udokumentert.

I og med at de har brukt bildet til utspekulert desinformasjon, er det et 100% legitimt krav at de renvasker seg. Det er inntil videre de danske imamene som fremstår som opphavet til påstanden om at fotoet av mannen med grisetryne og griseører forestiller Muhammed. Har de ikke noen straff for slikt i sharialovene?

For en gjennomgang av sakens utvikling med en hel del lenker, inviteres du til denne siden.

Forøvrig finner Milton det snodig å se at av alle mulige kandidater, velger dagens sosialister å alliere seg med noen som hater likestilling, trosfrihet og demokrati. Det er underlig at marxister, av alle Arkens underlige skapninger, er dem som blir mest forarget over at noen har fornærmet Gud! De har jo ikke dét engang. De har tegnet en profet. Karl Marx ville vært flau over dere.

Anonym sa...

MGL,

here are my comments.

You write: “Reading this whole conflict like freedom of speech vs. evil Islamists is just plain too simple. It's a question of both larger/more complex things, like populism, cultural structures, negative feedback loops etc. and of much simpler things, like common courtesy and dialogue.”

You are partly right. “This whole conflict” is not just a question of “freedom of speech vs. evil Islamists”, it is deeper than that in my opinion: it is a question of Reason vs. Faith or Reason vs. Mysticism, which reduced is a question of Life vs. Death. If one comes out on the side of reason being the king of virtues in man, then it would lead to seeing the good in guaranteeing man liberty to pursue his reason, unhindered by force or threats. If so then any avenue that a creative and rational free enquiry might take one shall be protected from force; be the inquiry in science, in technology or in business. In the choice between freedom and submission only freedom will provide the possibility of success in achieving the values one’s life requires. Any culture that regards reason as a threat is doomed to not harvest the fruits of freedom. For evidence see the historically unprecedented material abundance and quality of life of Western societies and compare it to the regions of the world mired in religion, mysticism and dictatorships where life is “nasty, brutish and short” (to quote the anti-West, Liberty hating philosopher Thomas Hobbes).

As to your accusation of seeing the whole conflict in the frame of freedom vs. non-freedom being populist, I do not understand it. It is true as I pointed out that one can make an even deeper case (which would require a whole set of books to indicate all the evidence for the case) for the real issue at hand, but why is that needed when the case also at hand is so simple to see? They, the “offended” Moslems and Islamists demand an apology for a free expression by cartoonist. They say:” forbid it! Forbid blasphemy! Apologize! Or else... we will kill you“ So clearly it is an issue of freedom of expression. If it wasn’t a problem of free expression vs. Islamist demands, then why did the cartoons cause this whole mess? Yes, there are deeper issues at stake, but freedom is pretty basic and too important to dismiss as not real issues. What you advocate is that we not debate the real issue.

You wrote: “There is no need to "take sides" here. I hate islamofascism just as much as I hate populist demagogues who turn the tide of public opinion against our ethnic minorities and incite cultural clashes like the one we're experiencing now.” If there ever was a populist simplistic trick in this debate, than this argument is it. You are in all seriousness equating Jyllands Posten (which you use as an example of populism) with Islamism. That is just an incredibly unjust comparison and smear of those who defend freedom. I do not think you actually know what Islamism consists of. It consists of a broad misanthropic ideology of theocratic fascism that aims to wipe out the West. It is a movement that once in power (Iran) hangs teenagers in public for being homosexual, kill or imprison all dissenters, enslave all women, persecute all free minds, flog rape-victims for being “promiscuous” (Leyla M) etc etc ad nauseam. Islamism has bin Laden as one of its main representatives and is responsible for thousands of deaths of Western civilians, from the Twin Towers, to London, to Israel. It is the Islamist holocaust denier Ahmedinejad that seeks nuclear weapons to wipe out Israel and put the West “in its place”.

Comparing the heroes of Jyllands Posten to this Islamist movement is simply too grotesque to even brake down and analyze further.

Kai Bugge

Nostradampus sa...

Oh, for crying out loud, Bugge!

In your struggle of Reason vs. Faith, don't you see that you're confounding Reason with another type of Faith?

Useful idiots like yourself are paving the way for Selbekk and his kind, just when we thought we had gotten them out of most influencial positions in western society.

While you're staring shit scared at the imams, the priests are creeping up behind you ...

Milton Marx sa...

Nostradampus: Last time I saw the priests were bussy travelling the Middle East to excuse. Who are the useful idiots if not the priests?

Anonym sa...

"Nostradampus said...
In your struggle of Reason vs. Faith, don't you see that you're confounding Reason with another type of Faith?"

No. Please point out with some actual arguments how I confound the two.

"Useful idiots like yourself are paving the way for Selbekk and his kind, just when we thought we had gotten them out of most influential positions in western society."

How? By saying they also have the freedom of expression?

Do you think it is good that Selbekk was threatened to submission by serious death threats to himself and his family. And that the representative of Islamsk Råd said he gave his family protection (Televised, at the office of our Minister of Submission, eh Integration)?

Personally I doubt a Selbekk once in power would have allowed me freedom to question his religion (even though he says he would). But once you start treating freedom as a privilege accorded only rational people, you are on a slippery slope toward totalitarianism. Everyone should be free as long as they do not initiate force or threats.

For your information I think the best way to expose religion is by a free rational discourse.

I see Bush as a major long term threat to the USA because he emboldens the fundamentalist Christian movement in the USA. It is Bush's religiosity that has kept him from identifying Islamism as the true enemy now attacking the West from without. It is Bush who condemned the cartoons and only very half-heartedly supported (if you can call it that) Denmark after the Danish PM visited the US. It is Bush who ritualistically chants that Islam is a Religion of Peace. Could you imagine Roosevelt going of in praise of Budism after Pearl Harbor? People would have thought him totally deranged if he had. But Bush does and few reacts.

"While you're staring shit scared at the imams, the priests are creeping up behind you ..."

Please educate me. In Norway, are you talking about Stålsett? Willoch? Who? And how many have they killed in the West in recent years? (Setting aside the vicious abortion clinic attacks in the US)?

I am aware of the long term threat of Christian totalitarianism in the US (but it is not too late to check and it is still in the distant future).

MVH
Bugge

PS! Good point by Milton Marx about the disusting submission and apologies made by our state sanctioned priests and imams touring the Middle East to beg forgiveness for practicing our right to free expression.

Anonym sa...

We appeased then and we appease now. Nothing is leart from history so it repeats itself. Here is some ominous parallells about a cartoon story in the ... 1930s. Not that it will impress any of our appeasers though, but perheps something to bring to the debate for Heidi:

http://timblair.net/ee/index.php/weblog/toons_cause_frenzy_uproar/



Wednesday, February 22, 2006
TOONS CAUSE FRENZY, UPROAR
Current political disputes aren’t the first caused by cartoons. In this 2002 speech, Australian treasurer Peter Costello tells the story of New Zealand-born cartoonist David Low, a troublemaker in Britain during the 1930s:


Low’s regular depictions of the Fuhrer caused enormous diplomatic problems for the British Government, but they were to prove remarkably prophetic. Throughout the decade he portrayed the German dictator as a ludicrous, vain, pompous fool with unbridled ambition.

In 1933 the Nazis banned the Evening Standard and all newspapers carrying Low’s work because of a cartoon he had drawn depicting Germany’s withdrawal from the League of Nations.

In 1936 during the Berlin Olympic Games Low received his first request to tone down his depiction of Hitler in the interests of “good relations between all countries”.

In 1937 the British Foreign Secretary Lord Halifax visited Germany and met with the Propaganda Minister Goebbels, who told him that Hitler was very sensitive to criticism in the British press, and he singled out Low for attention.

Lord Halifax contacted the manager of the Evening Standard to see if Low could be toned down. He said:

"You cannot imagine the frenzy that these cartoons cause. As soon as a copy of the Evening Standard arrives, it is pounced on for Low’s cartoon, and if it is of Hitler, as it generally is, telephones buzz, tempers rise, fevers mount, and the whole governmental system of Germany is in uproar. It has hardly subsided before the next one arrives. We in England can’t understand the violence of the reaction."

It wasn’t only Hitler complaining about Low. In 1938 Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain singled out Low while appealing to newspapers to temper their critical commentary of Germany. Chamberlain said:

"Such criticism might do a great deal to embitter relations when we on our side are trying to improve them. German Nazis have been particularly annoyed by criticisms in the British press, and especially by cartoons. The bitter cartoons of Low of the Evening Standard have been a frequent source of complaint."


Weird to think, from our remove, that anyone would ever have taken complaints from Nazis seriously.

Anonym sa...

MGL said:
Simon: Set C *doesn’t have to* condemn set B, as they are not responsible for their actions. Also, set C has no single voice.

No, but at their own risk. B claim to act in the name of, and on behalf of all of islam.

If a norwegian criminal murder Pakistanis on a large scale, claiming to be acting on behalf of us Norwegian we would put him straight, even though we do not have a single voice. Simple.

-Simon

Kjartan sa...

Mgl: To clarify the issue concerning supporters and sympathisers of terrorism. As you said, less than 1 % of British Muslims engage in or support terrorism. (A qualified guess would leave about the same numbers in Northern Ireland during the troubles (not counting the pope)). The terrorist networks have to be small, both in order to carry out their mission, but also to avoid detections. (Ireland again; the IRA consisted of only a couple of hundred persons, but could draw upon the resources of a much larger population).

However, the number of actual terrorist is irrelevant as long as this 1 % is allowed to drift in a much larger sea of sympathisers and also to draw resources from that very pool. When 40 % of the British Muslims express an understanding of the ultimate goals of the suicide bombers, it gives a very large pool in witch to hide.

To use Norway as an example; when the fatwa against Salman Rushdie was made public, we had a large demonstration (between 5 - 10 000 people) in Oslo IN FAVOUR of the death sentence. When one brave Pakistani-Norwegian (Noman Bashir) tried to rally the Muslim minority in a demonstration against terrorism, only between 50 - 200 people showed up. This sends a very strong signal, does it not, not only to the Norwegians, but also to the militant islamists?

And concerning the question I’ve seen many post; why are the Muslims called upon to denounce something they are not a part of? Well, a couple of years back, some neo-Nazis in Oslo killed a young black youth. We were 40 - 50 000 people marching in the streets to denounce this, although we didn’t have to, because we are not Nazis. But what do you think the signal to the Nazis would have been if only 50 people took part in that march?

As for the link to the Danish website counting racist/anti-Islamic (which seem to be more and more interlinked these days) comments, I am not entirely convinced of the accuracy of the websites claim that these comments are racist. Among clearly racist views there are also many comments merely discussing problems in modern day society, and I must admit that I am somewhat shocked to see them labelled as racist. If any (and all) questions concerning immigration and culture-conflict are automatically racist, how can it be possible to discuss these problems we are currently encountering?

Again, I must reject the basis of your assumptions. Not all expressions concerning immigrants/Muslims are racist, and therefore I still have problems regarding the Muhammed-cartoons as a part of an ongoing “campaign” against the Muslims in Denmark. (Personally I read Weekendavisen, a newspaper that makes any Norwegian newspaper-reader green with envy).

Anonym sa...

MGL,

THX for taking time to comment!
It is unclear what you have in mind when you say the muslims are legally oppressed:
Most common people are rarely in contact with the legal system. When they are it is my impression that our (western)
(what about the legal systems in muslim countries?) legal system is just. i.e. that you are innocent util the oposite are proven and that you are judged equally regardless of colour and belifs.

Do you mean the muslims are treated unfearly? If so how do you know that?

You say that the muslims are culturally oppressed. It is totally unclear to me what you mean be this? Could you give a few examples about who is doing what how to clearify?

It is also unclear what you mean by economic oppression. My first idea about "economic oppression" is taking money and values against the victims will? This can be done by the state or criminals. Do you mean the white criminals are robbing muslims or that the taxing system is extra harsh for the muslims or had you something else in mind?

You are also speaking about the muslim cause and that things works better and easier for non muslims.
This cause and things remains unindentified. Yet the discussions would be much more interesting
if the issues we were disussing where clear. Let me guess, it is difficult for a muslim to get a job? Now what would you like to do about this? Force people non muslims to employ muslims and pay them well?
Then what about your opinions about the legal system: forcing and robbing innocent people, race
based laws etc?

Ragnar D

VamPus sa...

Seems like posting in English dissuaded the usual suspects in this debate and led to constructive comments.. maybe I'll do this more often :-))

Anonym sa...

My conscionusness is still working with the (non?)concept
of "cultural oppression". Culture is something like a poplulations
customs and habits. Oppression is something forceful.
Norwegian culture consists of things like tasless food
and winter sports. But I dont se much oppression here?

Maybe mgl is thinking about things like muslim men being forced to buy
train tickets from women with uncovered faces? Maybe the
train and bus companies should be forced to have special muslim wagons?
That would be a subject to discuss..

I mean when you use a conecpt when writing you must have some
concretes in mind? If not your writing ends up with pretty impressive wording, but meaningless zero content?

Ìf you put toghether to conecepts (like culture and oppression) it is not evident that you a new conecept (which has existing entities)?

Ragnar D