Friday, September 19, 2014

Scotland - the end of a dream


So Scotland remains part of the United Kingdom. While the SNP will undoubtedly make brave noises about continuing the fight the reality is that the dream of Scottish independence was never much more than that - a dream.

It could be objected that other European countries with comparable populations, like Norway and Denmark, manage to be independent nations. But how independent are they? They remain independent for precisely as long as their more powerful neighbours choose to allow them to do so. What happened in 1940 when Germany decided that Norwegian and Danish neutrality was no longer in Germany’s interests? Denmark resisted invasion for six hours. Six hours. Norway put up a tougher fight but in that case the Germans, with negligible sea power, had to invade by sea. Norway lasted 62 days.

The lesson is that independence for very small countries is largely an illusion. If you lack the capacity to defend yourself independence will always be an illusion. An independent Scotland would be entirely reliant on the UK for its defence. 

When you are economically dependent as well then independence is even more of an illusion. The reality is that an independent Scotland would be ruled from Brussels rather than London.

Part of me is sad that Scotland will never again be a sovereign nation but living a dream can be a dangerous thing. I’m more sad that the United Kingdom itself is no longer a free nation but merely a province of the EU empire. A United Kingdom free of the chains of the EU would offer Scotland a great deal more freedom than a make-believe Scotland subservient to Brussels.

A referendum on British independence from the EU would be a great deal more meaingful than Alex Salmond’s pipe-dreams.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

anti-immigration Sweden Democrats make huge gains in Swedish election

The Swedish election has been almost all good news. The anti-immigration Sweden Democrats made huge gains, more than doubling their vote and their representation in parliament. The rabid loony Feminist Initiative party failed to gain a single seat. The Greens lost ground.

If even the Sweden, the European country which has been most determined to embrace self-destruction, is starting to come to its senses there may be hope for all of us.

And the gains made by the Sweden Democrats were in spite of desperate efforts by the other parties and by the Swedish media to discredit them and to try to bully Swedes into not voting for them.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

politically incorrect books - Bulldog Drummond (1920)

Books don't come much more politically incorrect than the Bulldog Drummond novels of H. C. McNeile (published under the pen-name Sapper). The first in the series was Bulldog Drummond, published in 1920. Apart from being politically incorrect these books are enormous fun. My review of Bulldog Drummond can be found on my book blog here.

Things get even more politically incorrect with the second book, The Black Gang.

The first four Bulldog Drummond novels from the Carl Petersen tetralogy which I recommend in its entirety.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Obama and the Ukraine - not stupidity and cowardice but cunning


A lot of conservatives seem to view Obama’s Ukraine policy as another example of the man’s stupidity and cravenness. In fact I’m inclined to think the whole crisis has played out exactly as Obama hoped it would.

America’s Middle east policy is now a smoking pile of rubble decorated with severed heads. What Obama desperately needed was a diversion elsewhere to stop people from examining that smoking pile of rubble too closely. The Ukraine crisis was made to order. The best thing about it is that 99 percent of the American population haven’t the foggiest notion of what the crisis is actually about. Even people with an extensive knowledge of the history of the region have trouble untangling all the nuances. Which means that the American people will believe whatever their media tells them. It’s the kind of crisis politicians love because they can’t lose, because even if they do lose they can pretend they won and no-one will be any the wiser.  

When Obama’s Ukraine policy turns out to be a lot of hot air his Administration will simply announce it as a foreign policy triumph. The media will cheer - Obama the Great Peacemaker has averted war. There will be demands for him to be given yet another Novel Peace Prize. The Nobel Committee will almost certainly oblige. The godawful mess in the Middle East will be pushed off the front pages, for a while at least.

This is not an example of stupidity and weakness. It’s an example of political cynicism and rat cunning of the highest order.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

towards a minimalist foreign policy


There’s an interesting post at the Upon Hope blog on the differences between traditional conservatism and paleo-conservatism, making the case that the chief difference is the approach to foreign policy, with paleo-conservatives favouring isolationism and traditional conservatives favouring an interventionist foreign policy.

Mostly I agree with the points made in this post. I agree that a do-nothing foreign policy is impractical. Where we possibly differ is in the nature of interventions that should be pursued. My own view is that the wisest course to follow is one of minimalist intervention. The objective should be to remove the immediate threat and then get out.

As an example, in 2003 I think the wise policy would have been to invade Iraq, destroy and weapons of mass destruction that were found, destroy Iraq’s capability to produce such weapons in future, give the Iraqi military the mother of all bloody noses, and then withdraw. I do not believe the objective should have been to change Iraq’s government. I believe Saddam Hussein should have been left in power.

This does not mean that I was a fan of Saddam Hussein. I simply believe that regime changes forced upon a country by outside intervention will generally not work. The result is likely to be massive instability and that instability is likely to result, in the fullness of time, in an even worse regime.

I do not believe it is possible for the West to impose “freedom” and “democracy” on other countries by force. If a country does not have the traditions that underpin democracy then it is unlikely to survive. Even more importantly if the basic cultural beliefs and structures that are necessary to democracy do not exist then democracy is very unlikely to survive. Most of the Islamic world does not have these traditions and cultural beliefs. To put it simply, these countries do not want democracy. They see democracy as a mortal threat to their culture, and they see democracy as being responsible for what they perceive to be the wickedness of the West.

In such circumstances it is better not to destroy an existing stable government, even if that government is by western standards an extremely unpleasant government. It is not only possible but probable that you will end up with a worse situation. By installing a weak democratic government you are providing a golden opportunity for radical Islamists to seize power.

Democracy will not work in situations where most of the population is hostile to the very idea of western institutions. 

There is another reason why exporting democracy is a bad idea. Democracy in South Africa was only achieved as a result of meddling by outside powers. The results have been catastrophic. Democracy can only work when the population is culturally and ethnically homogenous. When a nation is divided on racial lines the inevitable result is voting on racial lines. This means that minorities are rendered powerless and defenceless. Such is now the plight of the whites on South Africa, subject to slow genocide by a supposedly democratically elected government. 
The results in Zimbabwe, once again as a result of international meddling, have been even worse. As former Rhodesian leader Ian Smith pointed out years ago, democracy in Africa means one man, one vote, one time. The inescapable end result will be a one-party state.

I am certainly no pacifist, nor do I believe in isolationism. I do believe there are occasions when military action is desirable or even necessary. A weak foreign policy will always be disastrous. What is needed is a strong foreign policy that demonstrates our unwillingness to allow other states to threaten our vital interests. I do however believe that such a strong foreign policy should not be motivated by well-meaning delusions that western-style democratic institutions can be exported to the Third World.

Monday, August 18, 2014

homosexuality and choice


Liberals seem to be fond of the idea that just about everything is a social construct. They seem to be especially keen to view gender and race as social constructs. In the case of gender they have gone beyond the social construct idea and now view gender as something you can pick and choose at will.

Oddly enough they seem to be extraordinarily reluctant to view homosexuality as a social construct, and even more reluctant to view it as a choice.

This seems rather odd. While the whole concept of social constructs is largely nonsense it is, to many people, very attractive nonsense. It implies the possibility of freedom. So if it is seen as a positive thing that people can go shopping for the gender that most appeals to them then why do they not view sexuality the same way? Why do they cling to the notion that where homosexuality is concerned it is a biological given that cannot be altered?

My own personal experience suggests that homosexuality very often is a choice. Certainly there’s little doubt that lesbianism is a choice. I have personally known four lesbians who abandoned their initial choice of lesbianism and chose to become heterosexual. That is anecdotal evidence to be sure, but it is four separate anecdotes, and it has been noted that the plural of anecdote is data.

Homosexuality seems to be a much better fit for both the social construct and choice explanations than race or gender. Race is fairly obviously a reality. Gender on the other hand is an imaginary concept to begin with. Gender is a grammatical term. Words have gender. People come in two sexes, male and female, although you will have a very difficult job to convince liberals of such an obvious biological fact. Gender as applied to people is essentially meaningless. 

Homosexuality on the other hand seems highly likely to be at least partly a choice. A choice based to a considerable degree on peer pressure, social pressure, an immature desire to shock and fashion. You can’t change your race, your ethnicity or your sex but you can certainly choose to be homosexuality. I am not suggesting that is always the case but I suspect that in a substantial number of cases it is a choice.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

time to give apartheid a second chance?

In the wake of the events in Ferguson Fred Reed argues for a new approach. In fact he seems to be arguing that we need to give apartheid a second chance. It might not only be the only hope for white civilisation but also the only hope for black culture, or for other "minority" cultures.

He may well be right. And in fact apartheid is simply multiculturalism taken to its logical conclusion.

Of course this would mean the inevitable destruction (or at least fragmentation) of any nation that tried it, but it might be a way to salvage something from the wreck.

It's certainly obvious that our current approach, based entirely on wishful thinking, is never going to work.