Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Freedom must come first, or nothing genuine and new can enter the world

The news is bad but it needs to be widely known to what degree the west is now home to people who are at war with it, more specifically at war with the nation-state and the culture of democratic self-rule, and with the necessary political and cultural boundaries between an us and a them that go with self-rule and with the healthy forms of competition and mutual respect in inter-national mediation that go with free, competitive, creative, and self-ruling polities.

A recent poll (HT: Jay.Mac) reveals what a large majority of British Muslims are willing to tell a pollster:
The recent homegrown plot in Britain to blow up transatlantic flights will intensify the fear that the country's 1.6 million Muslims are rejecting political tolerance and free speech for a violent, radicalized version of Islam. There is a real concern that British Muslims do pose a threat to that country and its traditional values. So how prevalent are such radical views among British Muslims?

Some answers are provided by the most comprehensive survey to date of Muslim opinion in Britain. The results from NOP Research, broadcast by Channel 4-TV on August 7, are startling.

Forty-five percent say 9/11 was a conspiracy by the American and Israeli governments. This figure is more than twice as high as those who say it was not a conspiracy. Tragically, almost one in four British Muslims believe that last year's 7/7 attacks on London were justified because of British support for the U.S.-led war on terror.

When asked, "Is Britain my country or their country?" only one in four say it is. Thirty percent of British Muslims would prefer to live under Sharia (Islamic religious) law than under British law. According to the report, "Half of those who express a preference for living under Sharia law say that, given the choice, they would move to a country governed by those laws."

Twenty-eight percent hope for the U.K. one day to become a fundamentalist Islamic state. This comports with last year's Daily Telegraph newspaper survey that found one-third of British Muslims believe that Western society is decadent and immoral and that Muslims should seek to end it.

The news is no less alarming on the question of freedom of speech. Seventy-eight percent support punishment for the people who earlier this year published cartoons featuring the Prophet Mohammed. Sixty-eight percent support the arrest and prosecution of those British people who "insult Islam." When asked if free speech should be protected, even if it offends religious groups, 62 percent of British Muslims say No, it should not.
The scary reality is that only three percent of British Muslims "took a consistently pro-freedom of speech line on these questions." The Muslim threat to British security is so severe that the assistant London police commissioner, Tarique Ghaffur, has called for an inquiry into the radicalization of young Muslims. Ghaffur sadly describes "a generation of angry young people vulnerable to exploitation."
Meanwhile, British Muslim "leaders", after sending the government a letter blaming its foreign policy for the rise of home-grown terrorists, and making it rather clear that they could only guarantee the safety of Britons if Britain adopts what they consider pro-Muslim policies, were called in to consult with the government about what could be done to help stop the growth of home-grown terrorists in wake of the recent police arrests of 24 young British Muslims alleged to have plotted to blow up ten airliners and kill thousands of innocents. But these "leaders" did not come to the conference meekly promising to do all they could to protect the nation. No, they came instead as angry victims of western culture and made demands on the government, with the implied threat that if they were not met, there would be hell to pay (HT: jonz):
Muslim leaders summoned to talks with the Government on tackling extremism in their midst called for public holidays to mark their religious festivals.

The Whitehall meeting was set up in response to last week's airline bomb plot discovery.

Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly had prepared an uncompromising message on the need to tackle dangerous radicalism.

But, in what she admitted were 'sharp' exchanges, some senior Muslim figures turned the tables yesterday and made a series of demands which also included the introduction of Sharia law for family matters.

Dr Syed Aziz Pasha, secretary general of the Union of Muslim Organisations of the UK and Ireland, said: 'We told her if you give us religious rights, we will be in a better position to convince young people that they are being treated equally along with other citizens.'
Sharia law, which is practised in large parts of the Middle East, should also be introduced in Britain, they argued. While it specifies stonings and amputations as routine punishments for crimes, Dr Pasha said he wanted it only for family affairs.
Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott and Communities Minister Meg Munn also attended the meeting. Moves being discussed include 'de-radicalisation forums' to help young Muslims engage with Government policy, improved spiritual guidance for Muslim university students and support for training of imams. Haras Rafiq, of the Sufi Muslim Council, said: 'The first thing that we need to do as a community is admit there is a problem.

'It is like being an alcoholic - we need to stand up and say these things and have an open and honest debate.'

Kharshid Ahmed, chairman of the British Muslim Forum, said: 'We believe that the threat is still external - it is people coming from outside and leading the radicalisation.

'We need to deal with that before people inside our communities are leading the radicalisation.'
I find it amazing that the British government is still talking to some of these extortionists. Is it not yet obvious that these unelected Muslim "leaders" need to be replaced with a new set of "Muslim" leaders, if Britain as a self-ruling nation is long to survive? The tiny islands of Britain have contributed far more to humanity than the wide swath of "Muslim lands" ever have or likely ever will if Sharia and a totalitarian form of Islam continue to prevail. The reason for this is rooted in political or civilizational forms, some having more creative potential than others, because some respect the need for there to be aggressive, creative, free, and hence variously differentiated, peoples, and some, in the name of universal submission to some law or word of God, do not. England was one of the first nation-states to emerge from the ruins of the Roman empire, developing a church and law that was distinctively English, making the local vernacular into an organ of high culture distinct from the old Latin high culture. This anglophone legacy remains central to the freest and most creative nations on earth, and, notwithstanding western Europe's widespead fear of the power of the nation-state and nationalism, this suggests to me that the nation-state is still the political form best suited to human freedom and creativity, even though it is a form that can be corrupted like all the others. The present attempts by Muslims in tandem with western white guilters to transcend the nation state in some kind of multicultural empire run by the UN and international NGOs, presumably in constant appeasement of the angry "victimized" Umma, must be resisted. The billions of resentful people, along with the gnostic fantasists who believe our unavoidable human propensity to conflict can be transcended through "international law", or some such, can spin many gnostic philosophies and bureaucracies that act to tie the creative and successful and militarily powerful down; but they cannot do what the productive few hundred millions on this planet, those who presently are largely responsible for ensuring the only economic and (competitive, inter-national) political system that can feed 6.5 billion people, do. Give the terminally resentful more power and a lot of people have to die.

Much of the world cannot feed itself. The dependent populations are understandably resentful, but if their resentments get appeased, instead of put to productive work, the result will be a much less productive world. Consequently, who, or what wars, will choose which billions must die? When will the appeasement stop and the hard truths of reality be driven home? The longer we wait, the harder the blows must be. Let the succesful and free individuals in the global economy, and the successful and free nations in an inter-national political order, run the world. It's time to close down much of the UN and the post-national, western-hating MSM, time to ruin the careers of a lot of academics and Muslim "leaders" and put the creative and free people in charge again. People must be told the truth: that they can support a system in which more and more live freer lives, or they can die; and the one thing a free person cannot do is choose to enslave himself, either to a man or to a book. Become obedient to God, to his creation, to reality, by all means; but obedience to a book that is not or cannot be interpreted in such a way as to constantly expand the freedom of its readers is a book that deserves only a home in a musty library. A book that claims to have the final, or first and only true, word, and need not be continually supplemented by ongoing revelations and interpretations, is simply a bad, anti-intellectual joke. And those who are not laughing have no business being in the seats of power in formerly free countries.

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