Saturday, October 25, 2014

Oct. 25: Patriotism: the last refuge of a scoundrel

Thought for the day. Harper sternly said that ISIS leaders have threatened to launch attacks on Canada. But, said our  hero leader, we will not allow such barbarism from evil people. We will stand shoulder to shoulder and, in fact, we have already sent jets to kill them.

Isn't that bizarre? The reason ISIS exists is because western power have been killing Muslims and looting their lands for over a century. Among the worst killers in history have been our good friends the US and Britain. We have not only supported what they are doing. We are now actively joining them.

Gad, say our PM and journalists and our commentators, these people must be barbaric and irrational - and evil. And, probably, most Canadians will nod their heads and say we have to stand up to these vicious threats.

Well, maybe. Or it might be that these evil people dress differently from us, have a different religion from us, and are slightly deeper coloured. Different is bad because deep down (and not as deep as we might think) we are all of us bigots and racists.

One of the most dismaying aspects of recent days has been the rise of a particularly ignorant and strident form of patriotism. It's called jingoism. And for a sample of it, check out Brent Mazerolle's column on A 15. The tone he strives for is Julius Caesar addressing his legions. Alas, he just sounds like Brent Mazerolle.

The jingoists, standing shoulder to shoulder from sea to sea, are singing O Canada over and over. Yes. We were attacked by two, Canadian deranged men. Therefore, Islam is evil. Muslims are insane, irrational killers. And we must kill them --kill, kill. And if we write the term our soldiers, we must insert the word
'brave' between our and soldiers.

When the American army killed Vietnamese civilians by the millions, they weren't evil.  Nor were they evil when they killed over a million, mostly civilians, in Iraq and Afghanistan. They weren't evil even when they manufactured a 'civil war' in Syria, and created more millions of refugees. Oh, and especially not evil when they killed a Canadian lay missionary among the 300,000 civilians they murdered in Guatemala.

When I was a child, we still saluted the British flag and honoured the 'brave' British soldiers (with Canadian help) who brought misery and disorder to one-fifth of the earth's surface. It was all glory, glory, glory.

When will we grow up? Muslim hatred of us was created by us with over a hundred years of killing, impoverishing and stealing. And that's what this war is about. Billionaire capitalists, especially of the oil variety, want absolute control of Africa and the Middle East. As well, the so-called military/industrial complex in the US has made enormous wealth out of producing weapons, usually for exorbitant prices in one hell of a corrupt country. Most of the weapons being used by both sides were made in the US.

This war is about greed and murder, nothing else. And it's our side that is greedy and murderous.

So I turned to the Faith Page to read of a greater loyalty that we owe - a loyalty to religious faith, to social princiiples. Some bloody hope!

This one was by Rev. Richard Jackson, a Baptist, and on this traumatic day in our history, he talks about--wait for it ---making up a family tree.

Throughout history, our churches (especially the Christian ones) put patriotism above faith. Tell me where Jesus says "we must stand shoulder to shoulder and sing our national anthem." I am not suggesting the clergy should tell people what to think. (In fact, I see no sign they are capable of doing so.) But they should be encouraging people to see their world in the context of their faiths. For Christ sake, will you people get off your rear ends and out of your pie sales?

Despite the intensity of developments, Section A manages to have no news at all.  Norbert adds his  (half) wit. He says ISIS is made up of sociopaths who butcher people. Norbert, the west has been butchering and enslaving Asians, Africans, our own native peoples for over 500 years. (In fact, until at least 1941, there were prominent voices in the US that spoke in favour of genocide - killiing all native peoples.)  It is not even possible to count all the dead. Talk about sociopaths....

It's true, though. Nobody could call us religious fanatics. Our clergy are just (not very) decorative additions to the podium on Nov. 11

Oh, below Brent Mazerolle's column is one by Peter Stockland. It's a gee whiz ain't we wonderful column that pretends to be modesty.
In NewsToday is a picture of Frank McKenna in  his typical state with his mouth wide open.He was pimping for shale gas. Of course. He has always tried to deliver for those people who can make him richer. Some day, New Brunswickers might realize that the main beneficiary of McKenna's time in government was McKenna.

On C14, Jana Giles, editor of the Whatever pages, has an excellent column, "Dress Codes at not at all Unreasonable." Indeed, they aren't. I've noticed how high school students dress. The boys look like sloppy, ignorant louts. And the girls? Well, when I was 17 or so, I had a spell as preacher (and organist) at a mission church in Montreal's red light district. The hookers I preached to were better dressed than most of the girls I see in our schools.

Quite apart from the distastefulness of how our students dress.with flashing breasts and legs and the boys with their underwear showing, sloppy and sleazy dress profoundly hurts the learning atmosphere in the school. (That's true for teachers, too.)

Aurelie Pare, also in this section, writes on health. But she scares me. I'm sure that if she ever saw me, she would immediately see eight, fatal diseases that I didn't know I had.
We are at a turning point in our history I never thought I would see. We are going ever deeper into a police state (and one integrated with the US police state) that is not there to protect us or the law. Quite the contrary, it is there to control us as a mindless mass..

We are also committing ourselves to wars that can end only in nuclear war - and soon.  We are the aggressors. We are the sociopaths - standing shoulder to shoulder and singing O Canada.

So follow the latest advice from the churches. Get cracking on your family tree.


  1. As my dad used to say, I like the cut of your jib. However, as usual some of the details, like I'm not sure we can say that the US orchestrated the civil war in Syria.
    And I don't agree about the dress code. I see plenty of school girls on the way to school, and easily the most exposed are the catholic uniforms, which show more leg that any you see at public schools.
    As for school behaviour, well, girls in my day were pretty reserved, that didn't stop me from looking at them all day long. It wouldn't have mattered if they completely naked, I'd still be looking. But then maybe its because most of my teachers were SO boring.

    And finally, while I sort of agree that things aren't getting better, they are more reverting to how they were before, in some ways. You have to remember that this is right after a tragedy. I'm thinking about contacting the liberals and NDP just to let them know where this voter stands, so that hopefully having an election in a year will have some deterrent power.

    But I agree, I happened to see another Macleans cover, that talked about the 'barbarians' we were dealing with.

    I was just struck with the thought that air bombing is not particularly accurate, innocent people are almost always killed, sometimes even intentionally. Yet in our backyard, two crazy islamic 'terrorists' specifically targeted soldiers and attacked only them, even though they could easily have killed numerous other people.

    So we are now at the point where we live in a country where we are MORE ruthless and barbaric than the crazy muslim terrorists we are fighting. That's not a particularly pleasant fact, but it is a fact.

  2. I'm sorry to hear about your problems with sexual restraint. Have you thought of asking the TandT for a year of copies of its faith page? Constant reading of those sermons could destroy any interest you have in doing anything.

    The US has consistently supported the "rebels" in Syria.

    I didn't know that girls in Catholic schools had such short skirts. I shall have to broaden my scholarship in religious studies.

  3. You talk about the last hundred years of British and American conquest in Africa and the Middle East and this is very true. To many of the current radical Muslim groups, however, the roots of their struggle goes back to the Crusades of the 11th and 12th centuries. At the dawn of the 11th century Christian soldiers from western Europe entered Jerusalem and went to war with Muslim forces. The holy wars (Jihads) were fought to regain control of Jerusalem and close down whatever Christian enclaves had been established. The Europeans were finally defeated at the close of the 13th century. I suspect that the missionary zeal with which the Europeans fought to convert the Muslim forces was something of a ruse to disguise an outright attempt at genocide, not that an attempt to slaughter as many "non-believers" as possible would have been discouraged at that point in history. Perhaps it's not so very different today. The crust of civilization is very thin indeed.

  4. Dude, 'looking' is pretty much the definition of 'restraint'. Some of us still have some testosterone left. But you say girls dress like prostitutes, which pretty much means you must be noticing them. I've never noticed any such thing, but then I'm not really hanging around schools, but certainly around town I haven't noticed anything particularly scandalous. Catholic girls are pretty hard to miss with those uniforms...I thought you were from Quebec?

    The US supported Assad, just as they supported virtually all arab dictators, right up until it was obvious that the country was falling into chaos.

  5. Let me see...
    We're willing to bomb and kill innocent people all over the world. Maybe up to a million-and-a-half in Iraq alone. Some say 2 million now. How many more millions homeless or near homeless its hard to say. How many malnourished and living in daily terror?

    Our western governments are working with each other under what appears to be an exclusive, psychopaths-R-us membership-only-club with an insatiable blood lust for destroyed human flesh including countless babies,toddlers, and women and did I mention assorted children of all ages and babies and toddlers learning to walk? Simultaneously, our so-called leaders are greedily enriching themselves on the spoils of their most recent conquests and kills.

    Our coalition of western governments who laud the promise of fighting for freedom and democracy and national spirit and values at almost every speech, are themselves criminally guilty of terrorizing their own nations with fake terror warnings, orchestrated false flags, non-stop shooting hoaxes, think-tank conceptualized social engineering, psychological conditioning, deceptions, lies, and general hysteria.

    Meanwhile, our intelligence agencies are running ramshod over whatever constitution a nation thought it might've had at one time, and are either running drugs such as what the CIA did to fund the Contras, or are habitually receiving handsome kickbacks from other assorted slush funds for their efforts in creating perpetual war and profits for the monstrous war machine department.

    And our news media anchors are the lowest of the low by prostituting themselves to protect these horrific crimes until such time the fabric of our society falls apart.

    So, when 2 men who allegedly became recently radicalized converts to Islam and ISIS, and ran a soldier over with a car, and shot and another soldier on Parliament Hill, we're simply expected to subconsciously become a victim to our own cognitive dissonance, and suspend all our critical thinking skills, and simply believe our own governments and intelligence agencies wouldn't have the heart to pull something like that off?
    And we're expected to believe the media's lies once more???
    Oh, yes of course. Silly me. Let us not dare think outside group-think. Let us not think for ourselves. Here folks, just check your coat and brain at the door. Let's be sheep. Bah! Bah! Bah!

    BTW, excellent post as per your usual Graeme.

  6. BTW, my earlier comment was not directed at anyone posting comments on this blog, but was something I was getting off my chest as I happened to bump into a couple of extremely close-minded individuals in my travels earlier in the day. Its really a shame how so many otherwise intelligent and morally decent seeming people prefer to keep their heads stuck in the sand, rather than come to understand and experience what it is to be liberated from the confines of an indoctrinated, psychological prison.

    1. Group-think is the safe haven. With one's head turtled inside the protective shell of those numbers one needn't fear the ax honed on such concepts as conspiracy theorist and loony tunes. On a more positive note, psychologists maintain that due to herd mentality a threat perceived by a small percent of it's population is enough to alert and steer that herd away from that danger. Perhaps the present day crowd is less responsive after being weaned on television content designed to keep them on that consumer controlled path.


    The commenter who posted this link obviously cannot discern what pure propaganda is.

    So, I might mention, this is the usual propaganda drivel written by extremely biased Bush administration insiders, and Kissinger-hand-kissing sympathizers which unfortunately still appears to fool many into thinking the information contained therein is valid.

    The concepts as outlined in this article should not be difficult to understand They throw in a few Pentagon strategics regarding think-tank-driven Levant scenarios,etc; and simply write what an evil murderer Assad is.

    Of course Assad is the bad guy! He's being demonized and painted that way! This ongoing strategy is being carried out by the real war-mongers who always need a new boogeyman to sell to the stone-asleep public.

    This in turn, justifies the war-mongers going after him, bombing the hell out of his nation so that it becomes destabilized and yet another failed state. Then our maniac leaders can share in the profits of picking up natural resources from that failed state on the cheap, not to mention more strategic real estate, and then the psychopaths-R-us club are onto demonizing the next boogeyman, and then once again, the next boogeyman afterward, and they simply repeat the process until they own the damn whole planet! That's the plan. It's how it works. It's a simple process. What's so difficult to figure out about this?

  8. Again, conspiracy theories are pretty unconstructive and don't represent critical thinking. What we know is that the police were aware these guys were disturbed, the idea that the government WANTED this to happen is even silly, let alone played a part in planning it, which is just crazy.

    That they suspected it COULD happen and are now prepared to take full advantage of it, well, that's another story.

    However, to Donna, we have ZERO evidence that ANY muslims today bear any similarity to muslim thought of the 11th and 12th century. Back then 'the west' was composed of monarchs who certainly never ran the world, they barely existed as governments-actually, they didn't exist as governments.

    Isis, or Isil, or whatever it is this week, has clearly said they want to create an islamic state. Ok, fine. Go right ahead. Why would we care when Saudi Arabia is far more sharia based an islamic state than these guys could ever hope to be. And not only are we fine with it, we enter agreements to sell Saudi Arabia canadian military vehicles (and no doubt other things).

    If we have no trouble with Saudi Arabia, why would we be involved here? This is NOT a problem with muslims, you may have noticed when Canada said we'd be sending warplanes, Isil publicly said on social media that muslims in Canada should attack. IF Isil actually had anybody here to inflict terror, then they certainly wouldn't have publicly cried out for help.

    Of course WE couldn't care less about Islam, they can be just like Saudi Arabia and behead people for 'sorcery' all the time, who cares? Its quite obvious the fear is the same fear that the US state department has said over and over that it fears-that it will become a strong nationalistic government which may not play ball with the US.

  9. But its an interesting parrallel, the crusades were essentially the same thing-the 'west' trying to take over part of the middle east. It was AFTER the crusades that Islam really began to spread. I think this reflects an inferiority complex on the part of 'the west' because once the muslims got as far as northern Spain, they had no real interest in going further, it was too damn cold! And vikings for decades never bothered to settle, they just looted and left. NOBODY wanted europe, it was a garbage pile of disease that was freezing cold, and I wonder if that inferiority complex survives even today-particularly in Canada, where even europeans didn't want to stay here, and the British only kept it because they couldn't pawn it off for land in the carribbean.

    Just as an anecdote, a lot of people don't realize some of the first explorers to Canada were Portuguese, who were a large world power. They had contact with the natives, then left. There is the claim that "Canada" means "the village", but coincidentally, you can go to Portugal today and see the word "Canada" all over the street signs-it means 'dead end', and loosely translated means 'nothing there'. Which is quite possibly what the natives were referring to when they later had contact with other europeans.

    Anyway, thats off topic I know, but its my contribution to the conspiracy field (although actually there's far more evidence for it than most conspiracy theories) but its actually a better topic than the silly notion that muslims today are like they were a millenia ago, wait, actually I guess thats right, because the crusades were a war of defense for the arabs, just like today. Maybe thats also part of the inferiority complex, because muslims don't actually proselytize, they don't want converts because under Islam taxes come from non believers. So I wonder if some people are just really pissed off that muslims aren't converting to christianity, yet the number of muslim converts continues to grow.

  10. It's for the exact sentiments of disbelief and the matrix-inducing reality that results from keeping one's head buried in the sand in order to protect one's fragile world view paradigm, that the psychopaths-r-us club both in Washington and Ottawa will get away this false flag on Parliament Hill.

    Here's another question for the Harper regime: Why were all Parliamentary staffers and employees working in all Parliamentary buildings suddenly required to sign a confidentiality clause just last year?

  11. My point is simply that the racism that existed during the Crusades is the same racism that exists today. I'm sure that no one is missing the historical background here. So, what we have today is a radical group that wants revenge for all the past abominations. They have the benefits of 21st century weaponry while perpetuating the mindset that was prevalent in the Middle Ages.

  12. Yeah, I got that, I just think its garbage. If they wanted 'revenge' then we'd have seen some kind of vengeance. They couldn't even muster any support in Canada, they got lucky there was a couple of lunatics that the canadian government was dumb enough to refuse restrictions on.

    Isil said NOTHING about Canada until Harper announced that Canada was going to start bombing them. Now, what would YOU do in such a case? In this case WE are the aggressor, so don't you think it really makes no sense to be talking about the motivation behind somebody's actions who you are attacking?

    Thats like me punching you in the head, and all of us sitting around and talking about how when you say that somebody should teach me a lesson that in actuality you are just looking for revenge for things my ancestors did to your ancestors. Or maybe, just maybe, its because I punched you in the head. Same story here, this group of militants have SAID what they wanted, and the fact is that NONE of it has ANYTHING to do with 'us'. They want to create an islamic state, thats it. They don't give a flying &&&& about us, and that's my whole point of my earlier rant, we just hate the idea that we aren't the centre of the world.

    You will hardly find a muslim who will talk about hatred for the west for things done in the 1950's, let alone things done millenia ago.

    But again for the conspiracty theorist above, vaguely interesting questions you don't have answers for are not evidence for a theory. A confidentiality clause doesn't cover things like this, particularly when there are all kinds of witnesses around.

  13. Let's not be naive. There's a few bad seeds in every intelligence agency, or police force.

    So, what is the motivation?

    Even if we were naive enough to believe the story, instead of simply chalking this up to the actions of a lone, deranged, and marginalized drug addict who happened to get his hands on a deer rifle, our war-mongering leaders in Ottawa are using this as yet, another opportunity to paint this event as a self-radicalized terrorist threat to bring in sweeping spying and enforcement legislation.

    Problem - Reaction - Solution - Hegelian Dialectic.

    Almost all major events in history employ the Hegelian Dialectic of:
    Problem – manufacture a crisis or take advantage of one already in place in order to get the desired Reaction of public outcry whereby the public demands a Solution which as been predetermined from the beginning.

    And it's going to happen because our media can't bear the idea of asking the right questions, and most Canadians believe anything they're told.

  14. First, many pundits have pointed out the obvious-that somebody can be insane AND an islamic terrorist.
    Second, very true, except that the spying and enforcement legislation was already under way, it was supposed to be voted on THAT DAY. The future is another story entirely.
    Third, O lord spare us from amateur philosophers cum conspiracy theorists. If you are going to reference Hegel, at least get it right. It certianly wasn't problem-reaction-solution, it was thesis-antithesis-synthesis, and its silly to say historical events 'employ' the dialectic, the dialectic was simply a way of explaining the event.

    And you sure you want to be referencing a guy who said ""..."the State 'has the supreme right against the individual, whose supreme duty is to be a member of the State" I would think that would be a thinker you'd want to stear clear of.

    And its 'going to happen' if people aren't politically active or just spend their time writing on blogs. You can go to the Toronto Sun and see that MANY canadians were 'believing' the first racist thoughts that came into their head. If this were some grand conspiracy then they would have made up arabic names and said they were terrorists. That didn't happen because the MEDIA followed the story, and of course the government was doing no such thing.

    However, I agree that its a bad situation and that you are right that the government probably will go nuts to butts with it. That's why at least Trudeau has talked less drastically, and its important for us canadians who oppose this to make sure we get heard in the only way possible-during an election. Mind you, it may be as this blogger has said before, and we are simply getting our marching orders from the US.