Culture wars Global conflict Israel 

How the virus exposes magical thinking and short-term greed

The coronavirus emergency has affected virtually the entire world. In the west, it has brutally exposed the effects of a cultural characteristic that is as amoral as it is self-destructive. There is a refusal to face reality and the difficult choices it often requires, taking refuge instead in magical thinking and short-term greed. It’s a characteristic that has made victims of Israel and the Jews, along with many other people. In the current crisis, the west is paying the price of pretending that China’s communist regime does not represent a…

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Phillips Britain Culture wars Jewish people 

What will Jewish leaders say about Trevor Phillips?

The veteran anti-racist campaigner and former head of the Equalities and Human Rights Commission, Trevor Phillips, has found himself accused by his own Labour party of Islamophobia. The case is grotesque. Phillips has done much for British Muslims. And none of the accusations against him meets any reasonable test of bigotry. His allegedly “Islamophobic” comments are for statements over issues such as the Pakistani Muslim grooming gangs, or polling which found that a quarter of Muslims were “sympathetic” to the aims of the terrorists who killed the Charlie Hebdo journalists…

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appearance Audio Culture wars 

Islamophobia in the moral maze

This week on BBC Radio’s Moral Maze we discussed Islamophobia. The anti-racism campaigner and former head of the Equalities and Human Rights Commission Trevor Phillips, whose own inquiry first cemented the use of the word Islamophobia into British public life, has now himself been accused of this thought-crime. On the Maze, we didn’t discuss his particular case so much as the issue of the word itself. Does it actually describe a real prejudice, or is it used to silence legitimate debate about the Islamic world? Does it seek to prevent…

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revolutionary Britain Culture wars 

The left is eating itself in a trans culture war

The Guardian has been convulsed after publishing an article by its longstanding columnist Suzanne Moore. Its appearance triggered a letter of protest to the editor, signed by 338 Guardian and Observer employees. Getting on for half the workforce thus believe that their readers should not have been allowed to see what Moore wrote. Cue a blazing row at The Guardian’s editorial conference, with one trans member of staff claiming as a result to be too frightened to go to work. This employee subsequently resigned after reportedly receiving anti-trans comments from…

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Culture wars 

The real western civilisation emergency

A few commentators have begun to stumble towards the fact that the policy of becoming “carbon neutral” by 2050, as adopted by the UK and the EU, would undo modernity itself. On Unherd, Peter Franklin observes that, if carried through, the policy will have a far greater effect than Brexit or anything else; it will transform society altogether. “It will continue to transform the power industry, and much else besides: every mode of transport; how we build, warm and cool our homes; food, agriculture and land use; trade, industry, every…

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Culture wars 

Sanitising Soros through guilt by association

The law professor Alan Dershowitz has thrown a legal hand-grenade into America’s political civil war by claiming to have evidence that former President Barack Obama “personally asked” the FBI to investigate someone “on behalf” of Obama’s “close ally,” billionaire financier George Soros. He made his cryptic remark in an interview defending U.S. President Donald Trump against claims he interfered in the prosecution of his former adviser, Roger Stone. Dershowitz, a confirmed liberal, drew the ire of the left by joining Trump’s impeachment defense team —not because he’s a Trump fan,…

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podcast Audio Britain Culture wars 

The cultural chasm over Britain’s place in the world

I took part in a “Brexit breakdown” podcast discussion with Ian Dunt, editor of Politics.co.uk, and Anand Menon, Professor of European Politics and Foreign Affairs at King’s college, London and director of the UK in a Changing Europe initiative. Chaired by podcaster James Millar, our discussion quickly developed from the eponymous issue of Brexit which so divides us. After we talked about what it meant to us and how we saw it developing, we moved into wider and deeper cultural issues. These opened up before us as an unbridgeable chasm.…

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reason Britain Culture wars 

“I need to check your thinking” said the English police officer

At long last, an English court has struck a blow against the cultural tyranny of thought-crime and in support of freedom of speech, reason and sanity. In the High Court this morning, Mr Justice Julian Knowles ruled that the police had been disproportionate in the action they took against Harry Miller, a former police officer and a shareholder in a plant and machinery company in Lincolnshire, when they recorded as a “non crime hate incident” a series of disobliging comments he had tweeted about transgender issues. It’s worth reading the judgment in…

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revolutionary Britain Culture wars 

Tory policies don’t look much like conservatism

When Boris Johnson delivered his effervescent encomium to free trade at the Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich conservatives were ecstatic. At last, they cried, a real Tory prime minister! Just one week later, a great wailing has gone up from the same quarter. Horror and woe, they lament; we’ve got yet another fake Tory in No 10! People in the so-called “red wall” constituencies that used to be solidly Labour are down to earth. They are hard-working and thrifty. They greatly dislike money being thrown down the drain. Red…

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Fox Britain Culture wars 

Laurence Fox faces down the idiot bullies of wokedom. Bravo!

The day after I posted this blog explaining why virtue-signalling “anti-racists” were the real racists in our society, the actor Laurence Fox performed the astonishing feat of going on BBC Question Time and not behaving like an actor. That is to say, he expressed views which were sensible, reasoned and moderate – and thus brought the usual pitchfork-waving mob down on his head. In reply to audience member Rachael Boyle, a beyond-satire lecturer in woke studies who said criticism of Meghan Markle was racist and Fox was guilty of white…

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