Category Archives: Marxism

06 May

The Evil Trinity

I am grateful to my friend Alexander Boot for debunking Dominic Sandbrook’s preposterous article about Karl Marx in yesterday’s  Daily Mail. So much bunk was contained in Sandbrook’s piece that the process of debunking it must have taken Alex all morning. Well it’s done now. So open a bottle of that beer you like, Alex and put your feet up.

Sandbrook’s article was very, very Daily Mail, which is to say all golly-gosh and girly.  You can see the exclamation marks winking at you. He wrote of Marx’s “titanic intelligence.” Well, we all know what happened to The Titanic. He would have been more accurate if he had spoken of Marx’s “moronic” intelligence.

Look out, Karl, here comes the iceberg!

Alex has done such a fine job on both Marx and Sandbrook, so I will not waste much effort trying to add to it – save to point out, from the stinking, rotten heap of Marx’s “thought,” just one of the ripest pieces of idiocy. Marx talks a lot about history. Or rather, being something of a sub-Hegelian hybrid, he talks about “the historical process.” And the historical process, says Marx, is “inevitable.” Notice what this means: not just that, as Marx says, “the Communist revolution and the punishment of the capitalists” are inevitabilities, but that if a horse called Emily Thornberry wins the two o’clock at Goodwood on Tuesday, then that horse’s win was also inevitable. Because that horse and that race are also part of “the historical process.” And, at the risk of flogging a dead horse (so to speak), let me say also that if I win £50 by backing Emily Thornberry, then it was always inevitable that I should win £50. So, according to Marx, everything that happens was always inevitable – even his writing Das Kapital ; which means, logically, we can’t even enjoy the pleasure of blaming him for it.

Now look what you’ve done, Alex, bro! Just as I was about to get out into the Sunday sunshine: you’ve made me think about those other two titanic intelligences of which you yourself treat in your yesterday’s splendid blog. That pair of 19th century mystagogues Charles Darwin and Sigmund Freud.

It turns out that these these two titans are firm believers in inevitability: what in the trade philosophers call “determinism.” For Freud everything we do is caused by “unconscious motivation.” And for Darwin it’s all determined by our genes and natural selection.

Eager as I am to get outside, I can’t help but pause and quote a delicious paragraph from Jerry Fodor concerning Darwin:

“The crucial test is whether one’s pet theory can distinguish between selection for trait A and selection for trait B when A and B are coextensive: for example,were polar bears selected for being white or for matching their environment? Search me; and search any kind of adaptationism I’ve heard of. Nor am I holding my breath till one comes along.”

As for Freud, what is there left to say about a man who supposed that the whole range of human thoughts and feelings owes its origin to what goes on in the last eighteen inches of the alimentary canal?

The three titans Darwin, Marx and Freud were all atheists. And their disciples, mostly atheists too, often praise them for their supposedly having freed us from the shackles of religion.

My religion – Christianity – teaches the existence of freewill

Whereas the “liberation” celebrated by the numbskull followers of Evolutionary Theory, Communism and Psychoanalysis leads us straight back into the prison house of determinism.

PS These three determinisms contradict one another: is it my genes which make me a Marxist? Or is it my historical inevitability that makes me a Freudian. Or unconscious motivation which convinces me of genetic determinism? Three nonsenses in one nonsense in which we find ourselves – with reference to Darwin, Marx and Freud – confounding the persons and dividing the substance.

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03 Apr

The Company He Keeps

We learn much about a man by observing the company he keeps.

Over last weekend, Jeremy Corbyn attended a Passover celebration in Islington organised by Jewdas, a near-anarchist organisation described, with eloquent restraint, by The Jewish Chronicle as “a Jewish diaspora group known for its far left anti-Zionism.” Among their more socially-acceptable activities was the organisation of an anti-fascist Yom Kippur ball.

In May 2015, Jewdas took more than thirty people on its inaugural Birthwrong – the satirical mockery of the traditional Jewish doctrine of birthright – trip to Andalusia. This was advertised as “a trip for anyone who’s sick of Israel’s stranglehold on Jewish culture and wants to get away on a raucous holiday. See Maimonides! Get pissed! Do some Jewish tourism! Spend Shabbat with Andalusian Jews! Shvitz in a hammam! Visit a communist village! Get pissed!”

In other words, last weekend’s gathering was one at which Jeremy Corbyn would have felt entirely at home.

Jewdas members have a favourite party game in which a cheerleader calls out names of prominent British Jews and everyone boos. They have a particular dislike for Stephen Pollard, editor of The Jewish Chronicle whom they regularly abuse as “a non-Jew.”

They frequently preach the destruction of Israel: “Israel is a steaming pile of sewage which needs to be disposed of.”

Hearing those words must have greatly cheered Mr Corbyn, the avowed friend of the terrorist organisations Hamas and Hezbollah.

I’m left with just one thought: I wish I could get through to the snowflake, airhead youngsters who are so beguiled by “Jeremy” that they intend to make him prime minister.

I have found much to dislike about many politicians over the years, but I would never have described any one of these as evil – until Corbyn emerged out of his very own steaming pile of sewage.

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21 Feb

A Snowflake Writes in The Guardian

A couple of weeks ago I wrote a piece which I titled “The Guardian: a psychiatric casebook.” In the light of new clinical information I need to revise the judgement I made there. I originally thought the mental disease which The Guardian is suffering from is some form of neurosis. It turns out to be much worse – a full-blown psychotic illness. You know the difference between a neurotic and a psychotic? The neurotic builds castles in the air while the psychotic lives in them.

Young Owen Jones is the psychotic in question. He has written an article in The Guardian which qualifies him for immediate transportation to the nuthouse.

He says, “Corbyn is no enemy of Britain.” And he alleges that recent media coverage of Corbyn’s dalliance with foreign agents is the sort of baseless propaganda we used to hear a lot of in the cold war. Owen says all this stuff has been got up by “the right wing press.”

I’ll come to Corbyn in a minute, but there’s stuff to be got out of the way first. Owen claims that the right wing press has made false allegations in the past. He cites the Zinoviev letter of 1924 and attempts to smear Harold Wilson,  Michael Foot and Neil Kinnock as communist agents or sympathisers.

But Owen dear: just because false allegations were made in the past does not guarantee that all allegations made at present or in the future will be be false too. This is the sort of elementary logical howler which you ought to have been taught to spot while you were at your university and certainly before you picked up your pen to write for a national newspaper – even, Owen, a left wing national newspaper.

(Just by the by and to get the facts straight: Michael Foot did take money from the KGB and used it to finance his left wing rag called Tribune. And, Owen, before you wander far and wide you might as well take a look at what’s been going on on your own midden: a past literary editor of The Guardian admitted that he had been a Russian agent)

But the main event here is Jeremy Corbyn who, Owen says, is not an enemy of Britain. Well, let’s see…

Britain has a nuclear deterrent, but Corbyn has told all our potential enemies that he would never order its use. When is a deterrent not a deterrent? When it’s Mr Corbyn’s deterrent. Corbyn regards the state of Israel as a pariah and he has repeatedly refused to rebuke members of his party who have expressed violent anti-Semitic views. He has an organized rabble of supporters ready to take to the streets in all those 300,000 extra members who were allowed to affiliate to the party at £3 a time

There is worse. Only months after the IRA’s Brighton bomb of 1984, designed to wipe out Mrs Thatcher and her cabinet, Corbyn invited its perpetrators, the Irish Republican leadership, to visit him in the House of Commons. Corbyn is a supporter of terrorists of many hues – refusing to condemn Palestinian violence against Israel and affectionately describing Hamas and Hezbollah as “our friends.” And, turning to Venezuela, Corbyn says of the architect of its destruction Hugo Chavez, “He did a lot of good for Venezuela and the wider world.” Thanks to the policies of Chavez and his successor Maduro, Venezuelans are starving, critically short of medicines and killing zoo animals and domestic pets for food.

That’s how it will be here too, Owen if Jeremy Corbyn – enemy of the people – ever, with The Guardian’s help, gets into Number Ten.

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05 Jan

It’s not the economy, stupid!

The heart is always gladdened when someone in authority makes a definite and determined statement. So congratulations are in order for Sadiq Khan, mayor of London, who stated in his election manifesto of 2016:

“I shall challenge gang culture and knife crime head on.”

Well said, Sir! So how’s he doing at the end of his first year in office?

Homicides in London rose by 27.1%. Youth homicides increased by 70%. Serious youth violence is up 19%. Robbery up 33.4%, while home burglaries rose by 18.7%.

That’s a remarkable increase in serious offences of all sorts. But there’s more…

Thefts increased by over 10,000 incidents in a year, up 33.9%, Alarmingly, there were more than 4000 additional knife crime incidents, a rise of 31.3%.

Rape in the capital rose by 18.3% and there were 2,551 incidents of gun crime, a rise of 16.3% on the previous year.

Meanwhile, we have seen new and ingenious forms of sociopathic behaviour, such as the epidemic of acid attacks.

First the mayoral authorities crack down on the possession of firearms: then incidents of gun crime increase to surpass those in New York.

Secondly, these same authorities “challenge knife crime head on”: then we get those 4000 “additional knife crime incidents.”

Can we expect a ban on sales of Domestos end to the terror of acid attacks?

Mr Khan continuously blames central government’s “police cuts” for this shocking increase. Is he right? There has been a small reduction in the number of police officers but there are still 30,379 of them in the Metropolitan Police. The Met has an annual budget of £2billion and £240million of reserves.

The mayor says it’s all a result of central government’s economic policies as people are impoverished and deprived of adequate social infrastructure by the Tories in Westminster. But London is booming and there are more people in employment than ever.

So instead of subscribing to the prevailing Marxist explanation that increases in criminal behaviour – and just about everything else, actually – are the result of immutable economic forces, let’s try looking somewhere else to find answers. If economic depression leads inexorably to an increase in crime, why is it that – as Christie Davies pointed out in his book The Strange Death of Moral Britain – “Crime persistently decreased in the long economic depression at the end of the 19th century and crime has increased terrifically during the long period of economic expansion since the Second World War. The only people who believe the opposite to be the case are sociologists and left wing politicians.”

Oh, and Mr Khan of course.  

For him and for all those sociologists and lefties, I have a question: “What if virtue and vice, law-abidingness and criminal behaviour are not mere functions of economic forces, as Karl Marx vainly believed, but have actually to do with the individual freedom which makes possible personal and public morality?

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02 Jan

How you gonna keep ‘em down on the farm?

“Do you need to be told that what has been can still be?” asked T.S. Eliot in his Choruses from the Rock (1934).

It seems a daft question which we answer emphatically, “Of course it can!” Not if you’re a Marxist though, for whom historical events are “inevitable.” So the communist revolution, the dictatorship of the proletariat and the punishment of the capitalists will all happen necessarily, as if decreed by the laws of the Medes and the Persians.

There, I’ve gone and done it and mentioned the Persians and so the mind turns to thoughts of Iran. Could it be that Iran is about to present us with one of those historical surprises which Karl Marx said do not and indeed cannot happen? And, if so, might this happening be a bit of good news – perhaps even a lot of good news – for a change?

For six days, Iranians have been protesting in the streets of towns and cities right across the country and so far at least twenty-one people have been killed in these disturbances. It’s hardly surprising that the population is discontented and unhappy. The cost of living has more than doubled in a decade. Unemployment stands at 12.6% and, crucially, 29.2% among young people. The average wage is about £60 per week and the minimum wage £4 per week.

Censorship of the press is ubiquitous and strictly enforced in Iran – one of the worst countries in the world to practise as a journalist. The Ministry of Islamic Guidance decrees what music the people are allowed to listen to and which plays and other entertainments they can enjoy. Discos and nightclubs are illegal and when their location is discovered by the religious police, they are closed down. Women are jailed for campaigning for the ordinary liberties which are taken for granted in the West.

It didn’t use to be so thoroughly oppressive. In the days of the Shah, before the Islamic revolution of 1979, Iranians enjoyed a lively and varied cultural existence. The government spent lavishly on the arts. There was music and dancing with wine and beer in the cafes.

Then arose the puritanical totalitarian Ayatollah Khomenei to breathe Islamic fundamentalism. And the land grew grey from his breath.

After 1979, everything looked set and fixed, as nicely and as inevitably as any Marxist could wish for. But, just as 16th century Europe was revolutionised by the invention of the printing press, so today’s world has been radically transformed by the Internet and social media. Of course, the mullahs in that Ministry of Islamic Guidance try to control this new media.

But they can’t. And a new question arises in succession that the one asked by T.S. Eliot. And the new question is the one asked in the (probably banned) popular song: “How you gonna keep ‘em down on the farm now that they’ve seen Paree?” Thanks to the new media, the Iranians – particularly the 70% under thirty – have glimpsed something like Paree and they will not go back into the shadows of sharia.

So, as we see, nothing is inevitable – not even the triumph of Islamic fundamentalism.

No doubt the Israelis and the Americans are making all efforts to encourage the Iranians who have seen the possibility of a change for the better.

I do hope that our man in the foreign office, Boris Johnson, will lend all his weight to this cause.

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30 Sep

Your supper is in the dustbin

It’s countdown to Corbyn. We shall not be kept waiting for long before we find ourselves living – if “living” is the right word here – under the most extreme left wing government Britain has ever seen. Corbyn’s plans make Michael Foot’s 1983 manifesto – called at the time “the longest suicide note in history” – read like a discussion paper produced by The Monday Club.

The Corbynistas are preaching “Socialism for the 21st century” – an oxymoron to rival “Valve radios for the digital age.”

There will be wholesale nationalisation, massive borrowing and spending, the abolition of all pay restraint and an expanded benefits system. Give Corbyn credit for one thing: he is a true prophet. He rightly predicts that his policies will lead to a run on the pound and a financial crisis.

What he does not foresee is that in this crisis investment will plummet as financiers put their money where it is likely to secure a return: they will not toss it into the stagnant and bottomless pit of Corbyn’s socialism. No investment means no real jobs but only a hugely-expanded and unproductive public sector paid for out of even more borrowing. All that borrowed money sloshing around will lead to high – and eventually hyper – inflation. Millions will be unemployed. People’s savings will be rendered worthless. Thus Corbyn’s foolish and wicked policies will most hurt those he claims to champion: the least well off throughout the country.

But this horrible dystopian nightmare won’t really come to pass, will it? The Tories under Theresa May will get their act together and mount a vigorous defence of capitalism and the free market.

Oh yes, and Ben Stokes will win The Polite Society’s Award for Gentlemanly Conduct.

Mrs May will not outline the virtues of capitalism and the free market – because she believes in neither. If she did, she would cut taxes and abolish strangulating business regulations. Instead since that terrible day she became prime minister, she has declared she is determined that the government will make even greater interventions in boardrooms, the minimum wage will be regularly increased and the cap on public sector pay will be scrapped.

Observing Corbyn’s army of snowflakes – all those innocent young people to whom he is promising the earth – May is promising today “to create a fairer society for the young.” But she can’t bribe them with a pint when Corbyn is offering them a firkin.

Why can’t she see that stealing the left’s political clothes will leave her dangerously undressed?

During last June’s election campaign a commentator remarked, only partly jesting, that Theresa May had “…adopted Ed Miliband’’s manifesto and moved it to the left.”

Is there any support for capitalism and the free market in today’s Conservative party? No, there is about as much capitalism among the Tories as logic in the editorial department of the Daily Telegraph.

Yesterday that newspaper shouted, “May must outline her capitalist policies.”

She doesn’t have any.

Followed by this ripe piece of idiocy: “The intellectual case for capitalism is easy to make. What of the moral one?”

But the intellectual case includes the moral case – otherwise there is nothing intelligent about it.

And if you think the Telegraph couldn’t get even stupider, how about this: “May’s vision is of a free market combined with sensible regulation.”

But if it’s regulated, it’s not free.

I’m probably not such a good prophet as Jeremy Corbyn, that great admirer of Chavez, Maduro and the state of Venezuela where there’s no food in the shops and people are stealing zoo animals to provide their next meal. But let me try my hand at prophecy nonetheless:

The days are coming when a wife shall leave a note for her husband saying: “Darling – I’ve gone to the Labour rally. Scavenge for your supper in the dustbin.”

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16 Jul

Coming soon: Venezuela

I have long wanted to visit Venezuela for its mountain scenery, glaciers, rain forest, great plains and the Orinoco delta. The country ranks seventh for biodiversity, featuring rare and magnificent species. Such colour, variety and grandeur.

But it’s a long way and the cost is off-putting, so I shall probably never manage to arrange my visit. I’m not too disappointed though because, when Mr Corbyn comes to power – sooner than you think – Venezuela will come to me. Corbyn is a great admirer of Venezuela’s former Marxist dictator Hugo Chavez, saying: “He has done so much for his country and for a wider world.” Chavez is dead now but his successor Maduro is carrying on – and even improving upon – the former president’s good work.

As a good Marxist, Maduro understands that you can get that wonderful Communist system to work perfectly only after you have seized absolute power and political control. And here we must congratulate him on his 100% success.

In 2015 Maduro’s party lost the general election – a bit of a blow to any aspiring leader which would have disheartened a lesser man than Maduro. He may have lost but he was not going to be defeated. The day after the election results were declared, he announced, “I’m going to prevent the opposition coming to power by hook or by crook.” Interesting word, crook. So he ignored the verdict of the people, remained in office, sacked the judges, appointed new ones and established personal control of the military.

Forget such hell-holes as Somalia and Syria, Venezuela is the most murderous country on earth. There is a killing every twenty minutes and, over the last decade, millions have been slaughtered – more than those killed on both sides in the Iran-Iraq war of the 1980s.

Crime is the number one national occupation but only 2% of offenders are prosecuted.

The prisons are squalid and holding twenty times the population they were designed for. There is imprisonment without trial. There is widespread use of torture. As one Caracas journalist put it. “Thousands of people just disappear.”

Yes, Corbyn’s heroes Chavez and Maduro  have certainly done a great deal for Venezuela.

The country has greater oil reserves than Saudi Arabia but its people are scavenging for food in dustbins and rioting is constant. Fertile fields are left barren and grain production has fallen by 80% in just a few years.

The currency is worthless and people require wheelbarrows to carry the notes necessary for the daily purchase of what little there is on sale – reminding us of Germany’s hyper-inflation of the 1930s.

Tropical diseases are rife and there is a diphtheria epidemic. But the hospitals have no drugs, medicines or other vital supplies.

The British government has strongly urged none of our people to travel to Venezuela.

Now observers fear the country is on the verge of civil war.

It must require a very special magic for a political leader to bring a fertile and oil rich nation to starvation and the brink of dissolution. It does: it requires a Marxist magic of the sort that Corbyn admires and promises to bring to our country.

Corbyn repeats time and again that he will introduce stratospherically-high taxation. Profligate public spending and borrowing. Endless subsidies to the shiftless underclass and to the “state-uneducated” youth who adore him because he promises them the earth. Massive pay rises to his supporters in the public services and the industries he vows to re-nationalise. The establishment of a nomenclatura of his political cronies. Co-ordinated industrial chaos. The promise to rise to power by months of rabble-rousing on the streets culminating in “a march of a million” to overturn the results from the ballot boxes.

Coming soon then: Britain Venezuelan style.

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