Wednesday, 4 March 2009

No PC Here Please, We're British

Dominic Grieve, on whom I've been fairly hard in the past - particularly over his weak response to the sheer horror of Part VIII Cl. 152 of the Coroners and Justice Bill - came up with the following statement today on that gruesome bugbear, 'multiculturalism'. 
 
  •  "A decade of ranking people as members of neatly categorised ethnic, religious or social groups, rather than treating everyone as an individual in their own right; a decade of courting self-appointed heads of minority groups and pandering to special interest lobbies, ignoring the range of opinions and depth of diversity in modern Britain; and a decade of stifling difficult debate, under a blanket of political correctness, that marginalises those ill at ease with prevailing dogma or accepted ‘progressive’ wisdom.”
Categorising people is, of course, part of socialism: to make everyone 'equally represented' (and then to make an extraordinary leap in logic and say that if everyone's represented equally, they must therefore be equal. As Aristotle said, "Democracy arises out of the notion that those who are equal in any respect are equal in all respects; because men are equally free, they claim to be absolutely equal." But surely Grieve is wasting his breath; on the most basic of levels, to talk of multiculturalism is to identify immediately the difference between people. On the most sophisticated level, what has been used successfully over the past 12 years is what Michel Foucault identified as 'governmentality': the linking of modes of thought with governance so that the two become inseparable. That is the true 'genius' of Political Correctness; it is now impossible to talk about issues that affect or determine our notions of individuality and personal interrelations outside the political sphere. 
Over the past twelve years, hierarchical 'top-down power' has been widened to include other forms of social control: the use of marketing to influence social behaviours; indoctrination through an osmotic, rather than rote based educational system; re-education of those ill-disposed to be 'tolerant'. Those of my generation were brought up to debate contentious issues. Based on their life experiences thus far, will the current generation be able to argue about difficult concepts?

  • "The reluctance to exercise reasonable judgment and to criticise or challenge negative cultural imports into our country, including discriminatory practices against women and corrupt political and electoral practices, is one of the most troubling consequences of a culture that wishes to avoid offence and accusations of racism."

In other words, 'moral' issues - the mere mention of which is like dripping acid on to the ear of a hard core socialist and relativist - have gone to the wall. I do hope that the Conservatives intend to abolish the ECHRA: to condemn certain social practises such as those mentioned above will raise the cry of 'discrimination! Discrimination!' from those busily beating their illiterate wives and children like carpets. It is a relief, though, to have it almost acknowledged that one doesn't have to like something just because it's different. However...

  • "It is through contact and the constant exchange of views and opinions that we moderate each other’s attitudes and behaviour. Creating that contact, breaking down ghettos of the mind and instilling confidence in our ability to learn from each other are the essentials. Greater diversity within our society must be recognised and applauded. But it seems to me that the zealous regulation of conduct, the imposition of state-defined orthodoxy on public and private conscience and the overburdening of law and regulation, have the consequence of undermining that confidence and are deterring participation and engagement."

Socialists don't have consciences; if they did, they would not play God: they would permit others to have free will rather than doing their thinking for them. I don't like this sentiment of 'greater diversity'. Why must it be applauded? If I don't agree with some cultural practice am I going to be compelled to applaud it in the name of 'diversity'? Isn't that exactly what NuLab's about? Is that not, in effect, a further form of indoctrination? How is that at all freeing? The mere concept of 'diversity' - the most meaningless and yet most discriminatory nonsense phrase in the NuLab canon - sends a cold chill down my spine. And this snippet seems to suggest that one will be forced to enter into dialogue with the other whether one likes it or not.

  • “Multiculturalism was intended to create a more cohesive and friendlier society by facilitating bringing people together. But instead the laws and concepts underlying it seem to me to drive people apart endangering our traditional sense of community based on common values."

Multiculturalism was intended to create a New Jerusalem, a USA circa 1850-1950 in which everyone could have the dream ticket of capitalism. But whereas the US system did not tear down established class delineations and encouraged people to work their way up from humble immigrant to President, our top heavy benefits system and unconscionable derision of and hatred towards anything that smacks of the middle class - education, breeding, manners - leaves people with nowhere to go. How can you encourage social mobility (climbing) if the only ones who seem to get a leg up are footballers and 'reality' TV 'stars', and the proles whines that they should be entitled to the 'best' just because someone else has it? 
'Multiculturalism' can only work if we return to our essential pre-WWII values. That is, to be proud of our country, our achievements, our culture and our history; to welcome in others - as we always have - and enable them to integrate themselves into our culture whilst maintaining theirs. Read works like Hanif Kureshi's Buddha of Suburbia which illustrates just how both cultural identities are maintained and assimilated.

  • "In schools, the dumbing down of history has resulted in a system where the teaching of a narrative of British history has all but vanished. Instead of children being taught to have respect for past events and individuals who have shaped their lives, they are encouraged to be contemptuous of people who did not live up, in their own era, to the then unknown values of modern Britain. I am convinced that this approach has hindered more recent immigrants to this country developing a sense of belonging."

The dumbing-down of education full stop is to our great shame. And we can hardly be vile to immigrants who can't speak the language when 25% of kids under NuLab can't speak, read or write it either. Go into any town on a Friday night and see how much yoof jargon you can understand; you might as well be in a foreign country. We're around 20th on the list of international academic achievement, and I suspect we'd be a damn' sight lower if it weren't for our independent schools. Our country would be much better off if 90% of our schools were indeed independent and in competition with one another; if those academically inept were allowed to take 2 O-Levels - English and Mathematics - and dispense with education after that point, those wanting entry- to middle-clerical positions or to go on to A-Levels to take a further 5 tailored to their ability at 16, and those most able who want to go to university to take 3+ A-Levels at 18. But it is impossible to see how we can improve education in general and the teaching of History in particular as long as it is a crime - a BNP hate crime - to announce that one is proud of being British.

5 comments:

  1. Or indeed English. (Which I consider myself.) What kind of a country represents its own character as something shameful and tainted?

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  2. Dear MM,

    “Multiculturalism was intended to create a more cohesive and friendlier society by facilitating bringing people together.” - Grieve.

    “Multiculturalism was intended to create a New Jerusalem, a USA circa 1850-1950 in which everyone could have the dream ticket of capitalism.” - MM.

    Neither statement, in my view, is true.

    When we allowed immigration from Pakistan and Bangladesh, 50 odd years ago, the assumption was made that Islam was a religion much like any other and an irrelevance to that decision. Coming on the heels of Partition, that assumption was staggering in its naivety.

    From the very start Muslims refused to integrate, for reasons entirely to do with their religion. This was ignored, in part because it was convenient. The Pakistanis took up residence in the poorest parts of town, the parts nobody else wanted to live, and kept themselves to themselves. This suited everybody.

    Since then, house by house, street by street, neighbourhood by neighbourhood, the “community” has expanded to the extent that in those towns and cities where they congregate, it is not Muslim immigration that the indigenous population face, but Muslim invasion. The bigger these communities become, the more introverted their behaviour and the more self confident and arrogant their demands.

    The reaction of the establishment, both government and the race relations industry, was twofold; firstly, make any mention of the problem a thought crime, allege inherent racism, play, in football parlance, the man not the ball. And secondly, to invent multi-culturalism, with its rallying cry - celebrate diversity.

    All multi-culturalism does is to take the obligation on any immigrant to do their best to integrate and turn it round 180 degrees. It thus becomes the responsibility of the indigenous population to adjust their way of life to suit the immigrants refusal to live up to their side of the implicit bargain.

    Next only, perhaps, to the EU, it is the biggest con-trick ever played on the British people. And even today, people still don’t get it.

    It was, at best, only ever an attempt to paper over the cracks. But underneath those cracks have been growing and developing into a major flaw in the very foundations of our society.

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  3. It was, at best, only ever an attempt to paper over the cracks. But underneath those cracks have been growing and developing into a major flaw in the very foundations of our society.

    An excellent article/post. The blogosphere really is a last bastion. Let's hope we can preserve it. We won't under socialism for sure.

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  4. Incisive, rigorous ... just excellent, if I may say so.

    I am inclining to the belief that Labour has deliberately destroyed the education system in order to create a more pliable electorate. At one time I would have thought this paranoid. Now, as I say, I'm not so sure.

    Tony Crosland and Shirley Williams between them did more damage to our children's prospects and happiness than any other two people in the history of Britain. Crosland's name, in particular, should stand reviled for ever.

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Life is to be lived, not controlled, and humanity is won by continuing to play in face of certain defeat -Ralph Ellison