How to Make Extremism Mainstream and Fake a Debate about Islamophobia

Should be required reading for all people calling themselves journalists.

ZERO ANTHROPOLOGY

Is there a genuine debate taking place about Islamophobia? When and why did the “concern” about Islamophobia reach the highest levels of government in North America and western Europe? On which particular goal do all governmental parties fundamentally agree in this alleged debate? What does the nature of the debate, and the interests that are vested in the debate, reveal about the ultimate goals and values of the key parties concerned? Those are just some of my questions about Islamophobia.

Now for some questions about extremism. In a recent speech after the latest London Bridge terrorist attack, UK prime minister Theresa May stated: “While we have made significant progress in recent years, there is—to be frank—far too much tolerance of extremism in our country. So we need to become far more robust in identifying it and stamping it out across the public sector and across society”. She is…

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BDS, the AAA, and Academic Imperialism

The insidious nature of ideological conformity…

ZERO ANTHROPOLOGY

We Disagree to Agree

Support for a particular cause can come from numerous sources and points of view, each representing different interests. Similarly, people can arrive at the site of a demonstration, united in protest against an injustice, having arrived there from many different routes (whether the routes are understood in terms of physical transportation, or different social positions, i.e. “walks of life”). One might be in agreement about the basic point made by another speaker, but disagree entirely with that speaker’s reasoning. The wrong path can be taken to the right conclusion, seen from one person’s perspective—or a momentary coincidence of agreement between two otherwise very different perspectives. That would seem to partly describe my reactions to the arguments made by some US anthropologists in favour of the American Anthropological Association showing support for the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, against Israeli occupation of Palestinian territory. Here are…

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The “Science” of Global Domination

ZERO ANTHROPOLOGY

While it is an odd mix of physics, biology, and geometry that has captured the communications strategy of military planners, the messages themselves are very telling about how such planners go about envisioning US global domination, and the parts to be played by others in assuring that dominance. Some thus speak about the “center of gravity” in “hybrid wars”—writing in Military Review, Colonel John J. McCuen declared: “We in the West are facing a seemingly new form of war—hybrid war. Although conventional in form, the decisive battles in today’s hybrid wars are fought not on conventional battlegrounds, but on asymmetric battlegrounds within the conflict zone population, the home front population, and the international community population” (McCuen, 2008, p. 107). Everyone is a target population. How do you combat resistance to such a monumental ambition to dominate all of us? By using us against ourselves. Thus here is…

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Scientific Imperialism

ZERO ANTHROPOLOGY

“A fundamental law of Netwonian physics applies also to military maneuver: one can achieve overwhelming force by substituting velocity for mass”. (Maj. Gen. Robert H. Scales, 2003)

“Are we to reserve the techniques and the right to manipulate peoples as the privilege of a few planning, goal-oriented and power-hungry individuals to whom the instrumentality of science makes a natural appeal? Now that we have techniques, are we in cold blood, going to treat people as things?” (Gregory Bateson quoted in Price, 2008, pp. 35-36)

Scientism and Imperial Statism

Bob Scales Bob Scales

Major General Robert Scales is a fan of scientific allusions. In one publication he classed world wars into a typology where World War I was “the chemists’ war,” World War II was “the physicists’ war,” World War III (the Cold War) was “the information researchers’ war,” and World War IV (the “war on terror”) is “the social scientists’ war,” based…

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Dimitri Lascaris raises “serious questions” about Andrew Weaver’s political orientation

Citizen Action Monitor

Lascaris’ misgivings began with Mr. Weaver’s criticism of the federal Green’s BDS resolution.

No 1956 Posted by fw, May 13, 2017

“Weaver’s conduct during the BDS debate raises a serious question about his commitment to progressive values. For 50 years, Israel has been stealing Palestinian land in flagrant violation of international law. In 2004, the International Court of Justice unanimously ruled, with the concurrence of a U.S. judge, that Israel’s settlements violate the Fourth Geneva Convention. After decades of dispossession, the Palestinian people remain stateless. Their prospects for a viable sovereign state are more remote than ever. In the face of such facts, it is unfathomable that an individual of Mr. Weaver’s intelligence could claim that the imposition of peaceful economic sanctions on those who are responsible for these crimes is stepping away from the values of social justice, non-violence and respect for diversity — three of the B.C. Green…

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The Spectacle Continues

 

I haven’t been following the latest Chumptastic spectacle closely but I have noticed the FBI guy who was much derided by the losing party and its media sycophants is now being reinvented in a more….heroic mold. You really can’t make this stuff up. If Chump announced his fondness for, I don’t know, bacon, say, there would be all kinds of energy spent slamming the evils of bacon. And when he announces he really doesn’t like bacon after all bacon will be talked about like it’s the food of the gods. Looks like he will have to bomb Syria or another approved “enemy” country before the west’s political leaders the  various sleazy media pundits show him some respect again. 


The same media and its somnambulant audience apparently find nothing at all odd about its vocally  professed love of refugees, many who are fleeing from countries the US has destroyed or is destroying (to loud media approval of course). 


The media says refugees from wars it approves of deserve to be welcomed to the US and other Western nations but they do not deserve to live in peace as citizens of sovereign states that wish to remain free of Western subjugation. That is punishable by death. And nobody with influence and access to the mainstream media thinks serious contradictions like this are worthy of calling out. Or they just don’t have the guts. What does that say about the psychology of Western citizens? After all these things need to be actively repressed Are these signs of a healthy society?


Rhetoric Trumps War

In the post-truth, late-capitalist mediascape that passes for reality since the US general election last November hundreds of thousands of people across North America and Europe heeded the call of the pro-establishment media and the Democratic Party’s PR hacks and loudly demonstrated and marched against US president Donald Trump, protesting the crude and inflammatory rhetoric he regularly deploys to demean and demonize women, ethnic minorities and Muslims. Tens of thousands of people in Canada, the UK, Germany and other nations whose citizens have zero influence over US politicians joined their American counterparts in denouncing Mr. Trump, who has been vilified nonstop in the mass media since his election victory against Hillary Clinton.

Thousands of people headed to American airports to protest Trump’s temporary travel ban preventing citizens of six Muslim majority countries from entering the United States. Celebrities and supporters of the Democratic Party took to the media to passionately rail against the new American president, who has even been compared to Adolf Hitler by some media commentators. The demonstrations were, of course, given blanket coverage by the western world’s mass media outlets. Trump is evil, Trump is a Russian stooge, Trump is a bad dude who badmouths people they reminded their audience. This went on nonstop for months.
In early April, the evil President Trump ordered the US Navy to fire a few dozen cruise missiles at an air force base in Syria, ostensibly in reaction to a poison gas attack allegedly orchestrated and carried out by the Syrian government. The establishment media was ecstatic. Finally! Trump is a real capital P President pundits and sycophants crowed. The reaction across the spectrum was orgasmic. A few of the media commentators were so excited by the cruise missiles launching they probably rubbed one out in the toilet facilities after the broadcast. The moment the missiles fired the hysterical anti-Trump rhetoric was dialed down by several notches. It was an instructive spectacle.
So what did we learn? Inflammatory rhetoric directed at women, ethnic minorities, homosexuals and gender-confused individuals is beyond the pale…the stuff that turns a person into Hitler 2.0, the worst transgression an American president can commit. Preventing people from certain countries from traveling to the United States is also pretty bad and worthy of protest and loud shouting. The good news is that all a president has to do to get the establishment media off his back is violently kill people in countries that pose no threat to America or Americans. (Indeed, the much lauded Barack Obama was a prolific killer of foreigners and the media, along with much of the slack-jawed public,  approved wholeheartedly of his actions.)
This are not signs of a healthy society. Quite the opposite, in fact. All of Trumps vocal critics among heads of state and government in Europe and Canada made public statements approving of Trump’s right-of-passage to Murderer In Chief. This little spectacle is one of many that shows how diseased and putrid the moribund West has become as its imperial rampages are blocked by countries like Russia and China which will no longer allow the United States and its sycophantic club of wannabe imperialists to run roughshod over the world. In the midst of it all the West is losing its collective mind.