Wednesday, 14 January 2009

“We feel your pain – tee hee.”

COMPASSION is the New Year 2009 buzzword among thuggish world statesmen.

The Israeli prime minister, Ehud Olmert, says:

[It is] compassion and tolerance which characterize us."

His opposition number, Binyamin [‘Bibi’] Netanyahu, says:

"We grieve for every one of them [the many hundreds of Palestinian casualties in Gaza]; we genuinely do."

But the Isreali foreign minister, Tzipi Livni, has assured the world that

"there is no humanitarian crisis in the [Gaza] Strip, and therefore there is no need for a humanitarian truce."

So THAT’S alright, then.

These gems of humbug are easily outstripped, however, by the mercifully retiring US President George W Bush, who asserted at his farewell presidential news conference that:

“the world respects America for its compassion”.

As Paul Craig Roberts -

- sarcastically enquires, did he mean

The compassion of bombing a UN school for girls?

The compassion of herding 100 Palestinians into one house and then shelling it?

The compassion of bombing hospitals and mosques?

The compassion of depriving 1.5 million Palestinians of food, medicine, and energy?

The compassion of violently overthrowing the democratically elected Hamas government?

The compassion of blowing up the infrastructure of one of the poorest and most deprived people on earth?

The compassion of abstaining from a Security Council vote condemning these actions?

Will there ever be an end to this shameful Orwellian doublespeak?


Madeleine McCann's father, Gerry, has returned to Portugal "to discuss what more can be done to find his daughter".

He, Kate, and their dining companions, the 'Tapas Nine' , all agreeing to being questioned after taking a truth drug might help.

But don't bank on it.


"Some of you may have misunderestimated me."

- GEORGE W BUSH at his farewell Presidential press conference

Tuesday, 13 January 2009

Goebbels lives!

The Israeli prime minister, Ehud Olmert, has said:

"We are dealing with brutal terrorist organizations devoid of the compassion and tolerance which characterize us."

Sunday, 4 January 2009

New Year food for thought

In his Financial Times Maverecon blog, Willem Butler says:

“I have become convinced that the price of freedom is eternal vigilance against the encroachment by the powers of the state on the private domain. The better-intentioned a government professes to be, and the better-intentioned it truly is when it first gains office, the more it is to be distrusted.

“After even the most liberal-minded, open-government-committed party takes hold of the reins of government, it takes never more than a single term of office, four years - five at the most - before paranoia takes over. Disagreement becomes dissent, dissent becomes disloyalty, disloyalty becomes betrayal and betrayal becomes treason. The public interest merges seamlessly with the private interest of the incumbents. The state bureaucracy, where it has not been taken over by government loyalists on day one of the new administration, is gradually transformed into an arm of the government. Some formal checks and balances often remain, parliament and the courts among them, but they too are often feeble to begin with and weaken further as the term office of the incumbent government lengthens.

“I have watched this process at work in the UK since I returned here in 1994. It was breath-taking and depressing to observe the transformation of New Labour after 1997, from the party of open government, human rights and civil liberties into an increasingly paranoid group of power-hogging and repressive political control freaks, who have done more damage to fundamental human rights in the past 11 years than any other (sequence of) government(s) in any comparable-length stretch of time since the Glorious Revolution. Fortunately, despite their worst intentions, they have not been very competent - a more competent government could have done much more damage to our freedom and civil liberties.”

There are some interesting comments, one of which, by ‘Blissex’, points out that

“New Labour’s major fault is that they are too poll driven (following rather than leading public opinion), and therefore they have been unwilling to resist the strong demand by a majority of the voters for more repression, less civil liberties, more state interference in private lives.

“If you notice, the Tories have been campaigning for the same, but even further to the right, as it were.

“The big driver is the growing number of elderly rentiers among voters, people who much prefer (the illusion of) safety to liberty, people who are just a little less authoritarian than the usual flog-n-hang them class.

“ASBOs, CCTV, detention without trial, … are all wildly popular with voters, and every time the government or the opposition want to pander to buy themselves some votes without spending they propose new nasty attacks on liberty, especially the liberty of nasty young people to misbehave and irritate their elders.

“The greatest threat to liberty is not the parties, which only do what the polls tell them, but voters, whose demand for practical fascism has driven a lot of politics in the USA and the UK (and several other countries, as in many the baby boom generation has reached middle and old age) over the past 2-3 decades.

“These voters are sitting pretty, vested in careers, pensions, properties, and their main feeling is fear; they see all change as a threat, not an opportunity, a threat to their enjoyment of all they are vested in.”

Fear and self-interest rule OK?

My thanks to Tyger for highlighting the above.