Sunday, March 22, 2009

A Short Interview With Evan Sayet About The Nature Of Liberalism

Evan Sayet has given not one, but two of the best talks I have ever heard about liberalism (You can see them here and here). So, I was very pleased to get an opportunity to get together with him for an interview to talk about liberals. What follows is a slightly edited transcript of our conversation.

Q. You used to be a liberal, correct? So why are you no longer a liberal? What changed you around? What changed your perspective?

A. Yes, where I grew up you were a liberal or a Democrat. It was practically in your DNA. There was no intellectual rational reason that I was a Democrat. You went into schools. You leave your home. You leave your temple and by the time you go out into the real world to actually experience things, you've been bombarded with liberal ideology from day one.

You know, one of those things that I recognized later on when I went out and sought out Republicans, and attended a Republican meeting, was that it dawned on me that it was the first time I had ever heard what Republicans believed from Republicans.

Q. Now you've been around a lot of liberals. You said that's how you grew up -- and you worked on Bill Maher's show. So you certainly saw them there. What's the difference between liberals and conservatives? What is the basic difference?

A. The basic difference is a recognition that good and evil, right and wrong, better and worse do exist and that's what the conservative believes -- and it becomes his job to do his best to seek out the good of fighting evil, to promote the better end and squelch the worse.

The opposite point of view is that nothing can be recognized as better or worse than anything, not because it doesn't necessarily exist, but because as human beings we don't have the objectivity to know if our belief that something is good is really because it's good or if it's a reflection of our bigotries.

So to eliminate the possibility that our beliefs are bigotries, to eliminate the evil of bigotry, the liberal eliminates all critical rational judgement.

Q. Now you say, and this is related, that the modern liberal will invariably side with evil over good, wrong over right...

A. ..Evil over good, wrong over right. You got it.

Q. ...And behaviors that lead to failure over behaviors that lead to success. You say it's not because they're not stupid or evil, so is it just because of that that they don't discriminate?

A. It's twofold. One, it may be because they don't discriminate between right and wrong, good and evil, better and worse. But indiscriminateness of thought doesn't lead to indiscriminateness of policy.

Indiscriminateness of thought leads to a society with evil, failure, and wrong because if nothing is better than anything else, then that which failed must have been victimized. If it's just as good as everything else, then if it fails or if it's just as good as everything else and it commits an evil act, that evil act must have been de facto, provoked.

Q. College kids and celebrities are often very liberal. Can you explain why you think that is?

A. Sure. In order to hold onto the belief that nothing is better than anything else, you have to remove yourself or have been removed from the consequences of your beliefs. Because once you went to the real world, you recognize some things are right, some things are wrong.

...One of the lines I like to use is that stupidity is a luxury. And when you're young and you're on the college campuses and you don't have a job, you're not paying taxes. You're not starting a business. You don't have to worry about environmental policies that are ridiculous.

You're living on these college campuses where no matter how much you binge drink, no matter how much you projectile vomit, no matter how much you go wild for the cameras in Cancun and strip naked, the next day you wake up on a campus with lush manicured lawns. You wake up in an ivy covered two room mansion. You wake up and somebody else has bought your food, cooked your food, serves you your food, and when you're finished, cleans your dishes for you.

...Then you have the other side that you mentioned, the celebrities who have been retarded at the age of the child by their fabulous wealth. These are people who never have to recognize right and wrong, better and worse. They don't have to make decisions in which those have consequences. You know, of course, Bruce Springsteen doesn't have to choose between putting money away for his retirement or spending it now. He can spend it now and have hundreds of millions for retirement too.

Susan Sarandon doesn't have to choose between not getting a new car this year because the rent may go up. She buys lots of houses and lots of new cars. But, the celebrity is isolated from the consequences of their beliefs by their money. This goes to professors as well that are on the left at college campuses. They can't get fired no matter how bad they are at their job. That isolates them from the need to be smart. It isolates from the need to be right. It isolates from the need to be good -- and these are things that allow somebody to hold onto their childish, foolish, and quite just plainly spoken, idiotic mentality that is modern liberalism.

Q. Well, let me ask you, how does that apply to the media, for example? They certainly don't make as much money. They're not as privileged. They're almost uniformly liberal though. How does that happen, do you think?

A. Remember the real world is an antidote to the stupidity of liberalism -- and it used to be that journalists learned their craft in the real world. If you wanted to be a journalist, you got the most rotten job there was in journalism -- the late night to 8 a.m. at the courthouse shift or whatever -- and you learned your craft and you got a slight promotion. You got a slight raise -- and then 20 or 30 years later maybe, you were the anchor of a network or whatever.

Now you don't do any of those menial jobs where you actually learn your craft. You go to the Columbia School of Journalism where you were taught theoretics, not actuality -- where your childhood is perpetuated not only through college but now through grad school. Suddenly instead of starting out as a working journalist, you start off with the credential from the Columbia School of Journalism -- and you start already hosting the weekend news reports and you never get down and dirty. You never get to the grit. You instantly go from the fanciful life of college to the world of great personal power -- and you're dictating the truth to people -- and the money ain't bad either. Because once you graduate from the Columbia School of Journalism, you know, your entry level salary is pretty darn good.


Leftist British government forced to acknowledge historic occasion

Britain's D-Day veterans will receive the respect and support they deserve during this summer's 65th anniversary after Gordon Brown finally threw the full weight of Government behind the 'great generation of heroes'.

In a resounding victory for the Daily Mail's campaign, Downing Street tacitly admitted ministers had misjudged the public mood in refusing to help. The Royal Family is now expected to play a full part in this year's events both in France and Britain, while Mr Brown will travel to Normandy on June 6 where he will be joined by other ministers and military service chiefs.

In a further major success for our campaign, National Lottery chiefs announced they would repeat the 'Heroes Return' programme - which paid for 39,000 British veterans to revisit foreign battlefields to mark the 60th anniversary celebrations five years ago. That means the dwindling band of surviving veterans hoping to make one last pilgrimage to Arnhem, Germany, Italy, Burma or any other World War II battlefield in the comanying months will benefit from lottery cash to cover their expenses and those of their carers.

Mr Brown also said he hoped to stage a commemoration service at Westminster Abbey for all the veterans who could not make it to Normandy on health grounds.

In the wake of the dramatic rethink by the Government, the veterans themselves voiced their delight and thanks for the magnificent response to the Daily Mail's fund-raising appeal - and called a halt to further fund-raising. Generous readers donated 70,000 pounds on the first day of our campaign, and officials said they were now confident that the final few thousand pounds they need would follow, so that every Normandy veteran fit to travel can join in official events in France on June 6.

But when the Normandy Veterans' Association - which is to disband this year - approached the MoD for help with funding for the June celebrations it was firmly rebuffed, and defence officials even blocked plans for a national service of remembrance at Westminster Abbey. When the Mail first highlighted the veterans' plight on Wednesday, the Government said there were no plans to send ministers to Normandy to represent Britain. Bureaucrats cited a policy of giving official support only to 25th, 50th, 60th and 100th anniversaries, despite the fact that none of the veterans would be alive for the centenary.

Yesterday the Prime Minister completely reversed that position, while Downing Street sources voiced frustration that MoD officials had mishandled the issue. At an EU summit in Brussels, Mr Brown said he 'very much' wanted to be part of the event. 'As some of you know, I have written about this quite extensively in a book I have done for charity, so I want to be very much a part of the commemoration of both D-Day and the huge contribution that British soldiers made by risking their lives for the freedom of Europe. 'Nicolas Sarkozy and I are talking about what we can do together, how to commemorate this important occasion not only in Britain but across the whole of Europe.'

Diplomatic protocol means that Mr Brown and the Royal Family must wait for an invitation from the French government before drawing up plans, but Downing Street confirmed that it would back any invitation to the Royal Family to attend events in Normandy, and that they would also be invited to attend any service in London to mark the 65th anniversary. Palace officials stressed that no invitation had been received and some Royal Family members already had engagements booked, but added: 'We are seeing what we can do.' The Queen is already scheduled to meet some Normandy veterans at an event in Hampshire next month.

Peter Hodge, Secretary of the Normandy Veterans' Association, said: 'There's a special bond between the Queen and the D-Day veterans. 'She was there to take the salute at Arromanches for the 60th anniversary in 2004. I remember overhearing one of her equerries asking her how long she was prepared to stay, and she told him, "As long as it takes". 'If she were able to attend one of the events - perhaps the Cenotaph on June 21 - it would be the icing on the cake.'

Trevor Beattie, the businessman who has overseen fundraising for the Normandy Veterans, said he was 'absolutely delighted' with the response from Mail readers. Any surplus funds will be used to meet carers' travelling expenses, and to help those Normandy veterans too frail to go to France to attend events closer to home.

Tory leader David Cameron said he was 'hugely encouraged' by the response to the Mail's campaign. 'It sent a powerful signal of support to our veterans that the Government could no longer ignore.'


Britain's social work tyranny again

"We had our baby taken away for a year over a doctor's blunder". No second opinion sought, of course. Taking a baby away is a mere bagatelle to hate-filled British Leftist social workers -- unless the baby is really in danger, of course! Then the mother is "supported" and the baby can go to hell -- and often does! There should always be expedited judicial proceedings in an open court before a baby is taken away. Scum social workers are the last people who should be trusted. They are taught in their social work schools to despise the society they live in and it shows

A soldier and his wife had their baby taken away for almost a year after a doctor misread an X-ray. Lance Corporal Matthew Dean and his wife Katie were accused of abusing Louie and were suddenly faced with the threat of losing all their three children. The ordeal started with a hospital scan when Louie was two months old which found blood between his brain and skull. He had been thriving despite being born five weeks prematurely with a slightly enlarged head and floppy limbs.

Further X-rays seemed to show no more injuries until a doctor claimed she could see a broken rib. Louie's father, who has served with the Princess of Wales Regiment in Iraq, Kosovo and Northern Ireland, and mother were told they could not be trusted with him.

It was only after almost a year of misery that a judge ruled that the blood on Louie's brain was the result of an accident and that the rib had never been broken at all. The doctor had misread the X-ray. Social services then realised their case was so weak that they did not even bother to cross-examine the couple in court.

Cuddling Louie, now 18 months, Mrs Dean, 32, said last night: 'Social services treated us like something they'd stepped in and were desperate to build a case. 'Doctors and social workers have an important job but in this case they've over-reacted on a suspicion, rather than facts. Louie had one injury, and that was accidental.' Lance Corporal Dean, 34, said: 'Nothing can ever repay us for that year away from Louie.'

The couple, from Southampton, met in 2002 and have a five year-old daughter Daisy. Mrs Dean has another daughter, Charlotte, nine, by an earlier relationship.

Louie was born in August 2007 near Hanover, Germany, where his father had been posted. Because his head was enlarged, the couple were told to take him to a civilian hospital for regular check-ups. After the scan found the blood between his brain and skull, he needed two operations. Louie also developed meningitis but was eventually sent home with his parents. The cause of the blood remained a mystery but Army social workers said their should be no problem as German doctors could find no evidence of other injuries.

The family returned to England for Christmas but X-rays had been sent to Southampton General Hospital consultant radiologist Jo Fairhurst. Court documents show Dr Fairhurst believed 'there was a healing fracture' of a rib 'suggesting non-accidental injury'. On the strength of her opinion, the Deans were told they were to be arrested for child abuse when they returned to Germany. A document from the British Forces Social Work Service informed them that Mrs Dean's mother Christine Long, 62, would have to take charge of their son. Mrs Long moved temporarily to Germany to watch over Louie 24 hours a day while investigations continued.

The only way the couple could regain the right to look after him was through the UK courts, so LCpl Dean gained a transfer in January 2008. Hampshire social services took over the case and told them Louie would have to live with his grandmother on the other side of the town.

Last December, the couple were finally able to look after their son again when a judge rejected a bid to place their three children in care. The High Court in Portsmouth heard that the blood on Louie's brain was probably the result of an accident or could have simply happened spontaneously. His parents suspected it dated from his difficult birth.

More importantly, a German doctor assured the court that the 'rib fracture' was a misreading of a line on the X-ray created because Louie's lungs and spine had moved.

The judge said: 'I cannot find it proved that Louie suffered a fractured rib. I conclude it is very unlikely either of these parents was responsible for causing the bleeding between his brain and skull.'

John Coughlan, Hampshire's director of children's services, defended the 'necessary but proportionate intervention'. He said: 'We went to great pains to ensure Louie stayed within the care of the family.'

A hospital spokesman said Dr Fairhurst was working overseas and he was unable to comment in her absence. [Someone should fire the stupid bitch]


British council forced to give squatters a list of all its empty properties

Having 800 properties vacant is a huge bureaucratic disgrace but that is no excuse for letting just anyone march into them. Allocating them to qualified applicants should be urgently expedited

A council has been forced to give details of every empty home in its area to squatters because of a legal loophole. Lambeth in South London had to hand over the list after squatters submitted a Freedom Of Information (FOI) request. The Labour-run borough provided details of an estimated 800 properties despite council officers' fears that the move could lead to a marked rise in squatting in the borough.

Critics will ask whether the coup could be used as a precedent by other squatters' groups. They accuse the local authority of 'incompetence' in the way it handled the request from the Advisory Service for Squatters, submitted in September last year.

Liberal Democrat opposition leader Ashley Lumsden said a senior council source told him that housing officers had earlier committed 'a grave error' by publishing a list of all vacant properties in the appendix of a council document. When the squatters presented their demand, the information was already in the public domain so the request could not be denied.

But the council said it had been forced to give out the information because of a legal precedent set by another council. A spokeswoman for Lambeth Living, which manages the borough's council housing, said: 'When responding to FOI requests we have to operate within the letter of the law. 'A legal precedent had already been set in response to a similar FOI inquiry to Bexley Council. 'On challenging the request, they were instructed by the Information Tribunal that they had a legal duty to provide the address details of empty properties which were not owned by individuals.' She added that the number of Lambeth properties with squatters had fallen over the past six months from 49 to 45.

The incident is not the first major embarrassment for Lambeth in its struggle with squatters. Four empty blocks of flats at Limerick Court on the border of Streatham and Balham were occupied by more than a hundred people for six months until they were evicted last summer. Two years ago at least 100 armed police officers used stun grenades in a huge raids on a property in Kennington which had been used as a squat for decades - finding several kilos of cannabis, crack cocaine and six rounds of live ammunition.

Councillor Lumsden said the Freedom of Information incident was in a long line of blunders by the housing department that has seen it overspend by an estimated 23 million pounds, and the number of empty council homes double since 2006 to close to 900. He told the Streatham Guardian: 'The administration seems hell-bent on destroying public housing in Lambeth through a mixture of brain-numbing incompetence and sheer bloody-mindedness.'



Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, DISSECTING LEFTISM, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here. For readers in China or for times when is playing up, there is a mirror of this site here.


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