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The Expulsion from Eden;John Roddam Spencer Stanhope, 1900 Secularism Culture wars 

Secularism and religion: the onslaught against the west’s moral codes

It has become the orthodoxy in the West that freedom, human rights and reason all derive from secularism and that the greatest threat to all these good things is religion. I want to suggest that the opposite is true. In the service of this orthodoxy, the West is undermining and destroying the very values which it holds most dear as the defining characteristics of a civilised society. War is being waged against Western culture from within which is in essence a war against Christianity and its moral origins in the…

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king-and-queen-of-hearts Culture wars 

Trump on trial – or kangaroo court?

This evening, I attended a panel discussion at Jewish Book Week in London entitled “Trump on trial”. The three panel members were all distinguished writers who viscerally loathe US President Donald Trump. What follows is an account of highlights of this discussion which I provide without further comment. The first panellist was historian Simon Schama, who immediately after Trump’s election called it a “cataclysmic moment” and said “democracy often brings fascists to power, it did in Germany in the 1930s”. The second was Guardian journalist Jonathan Freedland whose new thriller…

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isaacs-circumcision-regensburg-pentateuch-c1300 Culture wars 

The cutting edge of secular illiberalism

The chill winds of secular intolerance are blowing ever more strongly across Europe, with Jews now struggling against the blast. A bill is being considered by Iceland’s parliament to ban circumcision for children under 18 years old. So here we go again. Back in 2012, a court in the German town of Cologne ruled that the circumcision of a four-year-old Muslim boy constituted “bodily harm.” After an uproar, Germany hastily legalized ritual circumcisions if performed according to medical practice. German objections to circumcision nevertheless did not die down. The Icelandic…

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Minerva and Mercury protecting Painting against Ignorance and Calumny; Simon de Vos, 1603-1676 Britain Culture wars 

Brexit and the abuse of cultural power

Nearly 40 prominent economists, lawyers, philosophers, historians, scientists and policy experts have formed a “Brains for Brexit” campaign to counter claims that Leave voters are idiots and challenge the intellectual distortions in the argument. Yet some academics say they are too frightened of career-ending repercussions to join the group. Similar anxieties have been expressed by Artists 4 Brexit, a group of creatives and performers who think the arts will thrive outside the EU. They fear that if they “come out” they’ll be dropped from commissions or galleries. What views are…

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dr-jordan-peterson Culture wars 

Defenders of free speech have a new prophet

If you want to know what the culture war is about, look no farther than the spectacular eruption in Britain during the past few days over Jordan Peterson, a psychology professor at the University of Toronto. For Peterson, who reportedly holds many liberal views, the concern is not over transgender issues or pay gaps or any of today’s causes. It is rather that truth and freedom are now under assault from neo-Marxism, which defines everything in terms of relativism and power and which has taken over the universities. The threat…

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hermaphroditus-roman-copy-of-greek-2nd-centuryrestored-1619-by-david-larique Culture wars 

How feminists have weaponised androgyny

The culture war now raging over issues such as women’s pay, transgender or inappropriate sexual contact graphically illustrates the phenomenon I identified two decades ago. I wrote a book called The Sex-Change Society: Feminised Britain and the Neutered Male. In this, I argued that the contract between the sexes had been destroyed, that women’s equality was being confused with identical outcomes, and that masculinity was being run out of town altogether with men being reduced to little more than sperm donors, walking wallets and occasional au-pairs. You’ll doubtless be amazed…

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Liberty Leading the People;Eugene Delacroix, 1830 Culture wars 

Idiocy and intimidation in Britain’s culture war

The culture war now openly raging in Britain continues to plumb ever deeper levels of idiocy and intimidation. The BBC was convulsed last week when Carrie Gracie, its China Editor, resigned over her claim that she was not being paid the same as other BBC foreign affairs editors who happened to be men. Her protest was on behalf of all BBC women employees who weren’t being paid the same as men doing the same jobs. An admirable resignation, then, on a point of principle? Well, not exactly. For she hadn’t…

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snowstorm Culture wars 

Colder is warmer. But of course

You know how anthropogenic global warming proponents have said for the past quarter of a century that higher carbon dioxide levels mean the atmosphere is catastrophically heating up and the planet is going to fry? You know how some AGW proponents predicted that “snow is starting disappear from our lives”? You know how “inconvenient truther” Al Gore said back in 2009 that snow and ice were melting much faster than anticipated? Well, now warmists are claiming the the extreme cold and heavy snowfall on the US east coast are being…

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