Sunday, November 12, 2017

The case for colonialism

I reproduce below just the abstract and a bit of the Introduction of a most "incorrect" academic article.  It provoked a huge outcry from the usual suspects and was promptly withdrawn by the journal that originally published it.  At least as far as Britain's African colonies are concerned, there is little doubt that they have steadily gone downhill in all sorts of ways since independence -- so it is long overdue for a systematic survey of that

Note, for instance, a recent report that Zimbabwe is again on the point of collapse, with a worthless currency and food shortages creeping in again.  As Rhodesia under British rule, Zimbabwe was a prosperous and well-run country that was a major exporter of grains and other agricultural produce --JR

Bruce Gilley


For the last 100 years, Western colonialism has had a bad name. It is high time to question this orthodoxy. Western colonialism was, as a general rule, both objectively beneficial and subjectively legitimate in most of the places where it was found, using realistic measures of those concepts. The countries that embraced their colonial inheritance, by and large, did better than those that spurned it. Anti-colonial ideology imposed grave harms on subject peoples and continues to thwart sustained development and a fruitful encounter with modernity in many places. Colonialism can be recovered by weak and fragile states today in three ways: by reclaiming colonial modes of governance; by recolonising some areas; and by creating new Western colonies from scratch.


For the last 100 years, Western colonialism has had a bad name. Colonialism has virtually disappeared from international affairs, and there is no easier way to discredit a political idea or opponent than to raise the cry of ‘colonialism’. When South African opposition politician Helen Zille tweeted in 2017 that Singapore’s success was in part attributable to its ability to ‘build on valuable aspects of colonial heritage’, she was vilified by the press, disciplined by her party, and put under investigation by the country’s human rights commission. It is high time to reevaluate this pejorative meaning. The notion that colonialism is always and everywhere a bad thing needs to be rethought in light of the grave human toll of a century of anti-colonial regimes and policies.


End of the 'bachelor pad' as almost a third of men live at their parents’ home until their mid-30s

For young men, moving out of the family home and living independently was once considered a rite of passage.

But the "bachelor pad" could be consigned to the annals of history, as new figures show that almost a third of men do not move out of their parents’ home until their mid-30s.

Now 32 per cent of men aged between 20 and 34 are living with their parents, compared to a fifth (20 per cent) of females, according to the Office for National Statistics’ latest data release on families and households.

Frank Furedi, Emeritus Professor of Sociology at the University of Kent said that number of young men who live with their parents is increasing due to a lack of aspiration among men and the “feminisation of society”.

He said: “A lot of young men find the transition to adulthood particularly difficult because male values and masculine values are regarded less favourably than feminine values. Masculine norms have been devalued quite considerably.

“Female values and seen as better than men’s values in culture. There is a lack of aspiration among men because they feel more insecure. There is no clear construct of what it is to be an independent man.”

He went on: “The aspiration for independence [among men] has been undermined by the way their world has changed, so they find it difficult to find points of reference about how to make their own way.”

Prof Furedi added that men are now more insecure about entering into relationships in a way that was “unthinkable” in the past.

He said that economic factors also contributed to the trend, since working class women are now more likely to get a mortgage than working class men.

In 1996, 27 per cent of men and 15 per cent of women aged 20 to 34 lived with their parents, which has been steadily rising over the past two decades.

The ONS said that larger numbers of young adults tending to stay at home for longer may be explained by staying in education and training for longer. Other factors include having children at older ages, as well as the increased costs in renting or buying a home.


Irish government minister told to quit because he asked a woman if she was married

Taoiseach [Prime Minister] Leo Varadkar has expressed confidence in Independent Alliance minister John Halligan who is facing calls to resign. Mr Halligan said he “regrets” asking an official if she was married in a job interview last year, writes Daniel McConnell and Gordon Deegan

However, speaking to the Irish Examiner, Mr Varadkar said Mr Halligan has his confidence. The support for the Taoiseach is significant and should see him keep his job.

“Minister Halligan has expressed regret for what he said. This incident should not have happened. Minister Halligan has accepted that,” a source close to the Taoiseach said last night.

Mr Halligan said of the incident that it was “an innocent mistake”.

“I have always strived to be a family-friendly employer. The people I have working for me have kids and I try to be as flexible as possible. The question was asked in that context. I regret the incident but certainly I meant no offence,” he told the Irish Examiner from Thailand where he is on a trade mission.

Last night in a statement, the Independent Alliance members said they have full confidence in Mr Halligan. “He made a mistake and he has apologised for it.”

However, the Labour Party condemned his actions saying he “broke the law” and said he should consider resigning from office.

“This is a very serious matter. The minister broke the law. The minister discriminated against a civil servant. He should do the decent thing now and consider his position,” said Labour TD Sean Sherlock.

The Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation, where Mr Halligan is based, has been told to pay €7,500 in compensation to a senior official who was deemed to have been discriminated against after Mr Halligan asked her in a job interview ‘are you a married woman?’.

He said his staff members had offered to write character references and the Workplace Relations Commission accepted his bone fides as a “good employer”.

The union representing the civil servant yesterday described the questions as ‘shameful’.

General secretary of the Public Service Executive Union, Tom Geraghty said “it beggars belief that 40 years after the enactment of the first Employment Equality Act 1977 anybody, let alone a government minister, would think that it is acceptable to ask questions based on an outmoded view of the role of a mother”.

“We hope that that the publicity around this case makes it clear that it is never okay to ask discriminatory questions or to make discriminatory assumptions regarding candidates simply because of their family circumstances.”

The executive officer has been employed by the Civil Service since 1993. She had applied for one of two posts of private secretary in May 2016 to two junior government ministers in the same government department.

At the interview, Mr Halligan said to her “I shouldn’t be asking you this, but ... ‘Are you a married woman?’ Do you have children? How old are your children?’.

Taken off guard, she confirmed that she was married and that she was the mother of two children and she indicated their ages. In reply, the minister observed, “you must be very busy”.

At a Workplace Relations Commission hearing into the official’s claim of discrimination under the Employment Equality Acts, the junior minister’s words at the interview were neither challenged or denied.

In her ruling which found that the woman was discriminated against, adjudication officer, Penelope McGrath found the comments to be “so outmoded”.

“It was ill-advised of the minister of state to have so pointedly obtained information that had nothing to do with this candidate’s suitability for a position, and a position for which she had determined she was eligible to compete.”


California NAACP seeks to abolish ‘Star-Spangled Banner,’ calling it ‘racist’

The California chapter of the NAACP has a solution for the NFL take-a-knee flap: Get rid of “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

The organization is urging Congress to jettison the national anthem after passing a resolution at its Oct. 26-29 state conference describing the tune as “one of the most racist, pro-slavery, anti-black songs in the American lexicon.”

A second resolution was passed in support of former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, a leader of last season’s protests during the national anthem.

“We owe a lot of it to Kaepernick,” California NAACP President Alice Huffman told the Sacramento Bee. “I think all this controversy about the knee will go away once the song is removed.”

The NFL kneeling began as a protest against the deaths of black men at the hands of police, not the lyrics of the national anthem, and has since grown to encompass social-justice issues in general.

Those who argue the song is racist point to a rarely sung and little-known line in the third verse that says, “No refuge could save the hireling and slave/From the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave.”

“It’s racist. It doesn’t represent our community. It’s anti-black people,” Ms. Huffman told CBS13 Sacramento.

The passage’s meaning is the subject of debate. Critics argue that the line celebrates the deaths of black U.S. slaves who fought with the British during the War of 1812, while others say it condemns anyone who fought on the side of the British regardless of race.

“No one has ever seen any racial overtones. There aren’t any in the song,” said Fox News host Tucker Carlson, adding that, “the truth is it’s not inherent to the text. It’s not there.”
He sparred over the issue on his Wednesday night show with University of Maryland professor Jason Nichols, who said that “we shouldn’t argue tradition for tradition’s sake. That’s the argument that people made for Jim Crow.”

California Assemblyman Travis Allen, who’s seeking the Republican nomination for governor, denounced the idea. “Our flag and national anthem unite us as Americans,” said Mr. Allen in a statement. “Protesting our flag and national anthem sows division and disrespects the diverse Americans who have proudly fought and died for our country. Real social change can only happen if we work together as Americans first.”

Critics note that “The Star-Spangled Banner” didn’t become the national anthem until 1931, although it had been recognized by the U.S. Navy in 1889 and President Woodrow Wilson in 1916, according to Wikipedia.

Marc Clague, musicologist of the University of Michigan and board chairman of the Star Spangled Music Foundation, has argued that the song is not racist.

“The social context of the song comes from the age of slavery, but the song itself isn’t about slavery, and it doesn’t treat whites differently from blacks,” Mr. Clague told The New York Times in a September 2016 interview.

“The reference to slaves is about the use, and in some sense the manipulation, of black Americans to fight for the British, with the promise of freedom,” he said. “The American forces included African-Americans as well as whites. The term ‘freemen,’ whose heroism is celebrated in the fourth stanza, would have encompassed both.”

The issue has received more attention in the light of the NFL protests as well as efforts to take down statues celebrating U.S. historical figures who were slave owners.

The anthem’s author, Francis Scott Key, who penned the lyrics about the battle of Fort McHenry, owned slaves in Maryland.
The California NAACP is still seeking legislative sponsors to rescind “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

“This song is wrong. It shouldn’t have been there, we didn’t have it ‘til 1931,” Ms. Huffman said. “So it won’t kill us if it goes away.”



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, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here


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