Michael Moore: America Must be “Cleansed” of its “White Male Privilege”

Michael Moore: America Must be “Cleansed” of its “White Male Privilege”, by Paul Joseph Watson.

Far-left film maker Michael Moore called for America to be “cleansed” of its “white male privilege” during a speech in New York last night.

Moore was giving an address at the ‘People’s State of the Union’ event in Manhattan, which was derided by its critics as having nothing to do with “the people” and everything to do with mega-rich celebrities lecturing Americans about how to think and vote.

Michael Moore in 2004

Asserting that the removal of Donald Trump and Mike Pence from office, “Still won’t be enough,” Moore said, “We must remove and replace the system and the culture that gave us Trump in the first place.”

“He did not just fall out of the sky and land in Queens,” Moore continued.” He is a result….of us never correcting the three original sins of America – a nation founded on genocide, built on the backs of slaves and maintained through the subjugation of women to second class citizenship and economic disempowerment.”

“As we seek to rid ourselves of Trump, we must also cleanse our American soul of its white male privilege, its voracious greed,” he added. …

Back in August last year, he celebrated a future where white men were a minority because America’s demographic shift will make it easier for Democrats to win future presidential elections.

“The angry white guy is dying out, and the Census Bureau has already told us that by 2050, white people are going to be the minority, and I’m not sad to say I can’t wait for that day to happen. I hope I live long enough to see it because it will be a better country,” said Moore.

John McDonnell’s excuses for Venezuela just don’t stack up

John McDonnell’s excuses for Venezuela just don’t stack up, by Kristian Niemietz.

At last, we’ve learned what went wrong in Venezuela: it wasn’t real socialism. At the World Economic Forum summit in Davos, [UK] Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell explained:

“It’s not that the issue is socialism vs capitalism. … All the objectives of Chavez… would have been successful if they had mobilised the oil resources to actually invest in the long term. … I think in Venezuela they took a wrong turn, a not particularly effective path, not a socialist path.”

McDonnell is in good company. Quite a few prominent figures on the Left, such as Noam Chomsky and Slavoj Žižek, are now explicitly disputing Venezuela’s socialist credentials.

With this, Venezuela joins a long list of countries that were once held up as role models of socialism by Western intellectuals, until their failures became so obvious and undeniable that they became an embarrassment for the socialist cause. At this point, those countries’ version of socialism retroactively ceases to be “real” socialism.

This has been going on for a long time. Thirty years ago, Friedrich Hayek wrote about, “the intellectuals’ vain search for a truly socialist community, which results in the idealisation of, and then disillusionment with, a seemingly endless string of ‘utopias’ – the Soviet Union, then Cuba, China, Yugoslavia, Vietnam, Tanzania, Nicaragua.” …

Whenever a heavily state-controlled economy fails, socialists think that now would be a good time to embark on a semantic discussion about what socialism “really” means. But this is neither here nor there. It wasn’t socialism’s critics who attached that label to the Chavista programme. It was the regime itself, and its many Western admirers.

In Australia many left wing media personalities and celebrities lauded Chavez and publicly advocated his policies for Australia — including Natasha Stott-Despoja, Phillip Adams, and John Pliger. See The Suicide of Venezuela.

hat-tip Matthew

‘Islamophobia’ Hoaxes and the Rush to Judgment

‘Islamophobia’ Hoaxes and the Rush to Judgment, by Andy Ngo.

Two weeks ago, Canadians responded in horror to a disturbing news story in Toronto: before a bank of cameras, a tearful 11-year-old girl said that a man had repeatedly cut her headscarf with scissors as she walked to school. …

Khawlah Noman … told the roomful of reporters that the brazen attack had left her terrified and screaming. She was flanked by a Muslim activist, her mother, and younger brother Mohammad. Mohammad confirmed his sister’s story, stating that he had witnessed the attack while walking with her to school. …

Politicians … rushed to express outrage at the incident, even though details remained scant. “My heart goes out to the young girl who was attacked, seemingly for her religion,” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said during a televised speech. …

Passionate reactions to the incident were swift on social media. Echoing a common belief, Twitter user @Sakira_writes said: “A no doubt white male monster did this.” … Al Jazeera splashed with the following headline: “Toronto Muslim girl ‘scared’ after attacker cuts hijab.” …

But then, three days after the family’s emotional press conference and the collective rush to judgment, Toronto Police released a terse statement: “After a detailed investigation, police have determined that the events described in the original news release did not happen. The investigation is concluded.” Khawlah Noman and her brother, it turned out, had fabricated the attack. They will not face legal consequences for falsely reporting it. …

Khawlah Noman’s elaborate tale is unfortunately not a one-off incident on the continent. A series of hijab-related attack stories marred the American media landscape shortly after the election of Donald Trump.

  • In November 2016, a University of Louisiana at Lafayette student claimed she was violently attacked and had her hijab torn off by two white men, one of whom she said was wearing a Trump hat. She later admitted to making the whole thing up.
  • The same week, a student at the University of Michigan said a man threatened to set her hijab on fire. A Michigan police investigation subsequently determined that the incident did not happen.
  • The following month, Yasmin Seweid, a college student in New York City, claimed she was assaulted by white men who tried to pull off her headscarf during a subway ride. CCTV footage later confirmed that the incident never happened.

While activists and politicians are keen to move on when these stories unravel, I wonder if anyone bothers to consider how much damage is left in their wake and who stands to benefit from “Islamophobia” hysteria.

The Elephant in the Brain: Hidden Motives in Everyday Life

The Elephant in the Brain: Hidden Motives in Everyday Life, by Samuel Hammond.

“The elephant in the room” is any important and obvious fact that, for whatever reason, no one is willing to talk about.

In their new book, The Elephant in the Brain, authors Kevin Simler and Robin Hanson extend the concept to one the most important and obvious, yet unspoken, facts about the human mind: that we are masters of self-deception, equipped by evolution with an “introspective blind spot” that hides our deeper, selfish motives, even when the same motives are easy to spot in others. …

Our introspective blind spot is not unlike the literal blind spot in our eye, located where the optic nerve connects with our eye’s disc of photoreceptor cells. … Our brain automatically fills in the hole using information from the surrounding context, creating the illusion of a continuous field of vision. We can easily verify that the deception is taking place with imaging techniques or simple optical illusions, and yet knowledge of its existence cannot make us any less blind to our own blindness.

Unconscious self-deception in the social domain works similarly: easy to demonstrate but impossible to switch-off. Thus for any action with a mix of sacred and profane motives — as much Good Samaritan as quid pro quo — we are willfully blind to the latter, not as conscious manipulators, but because strategic ignorance of our Machiavellian side had survival value for our ancestors. As the renown evolutionary psychologist Robert Trivers once put it, “We deceive ourselves the better to deceive others.”

The core thesis of The Elephant in the Brain is that this has major implications for public policy that we are loathe to admit. Thus spending on health care, we learn, isn’t merely about improving our health; it’s also a wasteful way to signal our caring for others. Admitting this, we could conceivably cut medical expenditure in half and be no worse off. Likewise, charitable giving isn’t just, or even mainly, about doing good in the world; it’s also a way to flex one’s wealth and generosity while bathing in the “warm glow” of peer approval. …

Take cheating. “Everybody cheats,” declare Simler and Hanson. “There’s no use in denying it … Most of us honor the big, important rules, like those prohibiting robbery, arson, rape, and murder. But we routinely violate small and middling norms.” Even our ancestors were incorrigible cheaters, as shown by “the fact that our brains have special-purpose adaptations for detecting cheats,” manifested in the elusive search for sincerity in the eyes of a suspected liar. The best liars are therefore the ones who believe their own lies, and “drink their own kool-aid.” It’s a feat humans accomplish with the aid of self-serving excuses, what Simler and Hanson call “pretexts” (“I didn’t steal it. I borrowed it.”), that help us construe our misbehavior in a better light. …

Like our visual blind spot, our cheating natures are impossible to excise. Hypocrisy is our evolutionary original sin.