Saturday, November 15, 2003

Idiotarianism on display

The Independent, most notable for publishing the writings of Robert "25 loo rolls" Fisk, is working hard to legitimize the "anti-war" bunch that will be protesting Bush's upcoming state visit:
The Prime Minister would like to write [the protesters] off as extremists - but Andrew Johnson talks to those preparing to protest next week and finds the same diversity that made the anti-war movement impossible to ignore
Impossible to ignore? I thought Bush and Blair and the much-sneered-at Coalition of the Willing did exactly that. But hey, let's check out these protesters, so full of diversity. Surely they will bring credit to the bunch? Well, let's see: there's the 15-year-old who'll be ditching school:
"I've been leafleting in schools. I don't think George Bush should have been invited. It's not just because of the war, I don't like him, or rather, disagree with him, for a number of reasons - his refusal to sign the Kyoto treaty, for example."
OK, so the usual how-could-he-go-against the world stuff. I'm not going to pick on a teenager, so moving on.

Next we have the barrister. This guy provides much comic relief:

Ernest James, 52, is a barrister who joined the national demonstration against war in Iraq earlier this year. He believes President Bush will use his visit to launch his re-election campaign.

"The Americans love the Royal Family," he says, referring to the President's scheduled stay at Buckingham Palace.
As Dave Barry would say, I swear I'm not making this up. But it gets, umm, better:
"The last use of a state visit for a US President was 85 years ago. America has done nothing for this country, we've just done things for them. Pakistan has received more, we're still closing our steel mills."
Nope, the United States has done nothing whatsoever for the British since 1918. And it's our fault that the British steel industry is uncompetitive. (Was this man honestly expecting third-world style aid?)

Anyway, onto The Muslim, as the Independent subtly labels the next rocket scientist they quote:

"I think its disgusting that the world's number one terrorist has been invited on a state visit. I'd like him to know that the British people are not with him on this. When people are occupied they are going to resist."
You know, aside from the lame reference to "number one terrorist," I love this romantic notion of "resistance." Look: the Warsaw Ghetto resisted. The people who rose up agaist Saddam in 1991 resisted. The tiny number of French who actually didn't cooperate with their Nazi occupiers, resisted.

The lamers marching around in Western cities against whatever cause they read about on Indymedia, who smash windows and trash fast-food joints and light other people's cars on fire, only to go home at the end of the day -- they are not resisting. They are not standing up for what's right; they aren't standing up for anything at all. They are there to "make their voices heard," or rather, to be seen making their voices heard. Someday, years from now, they willl look back on this day and smile at how they "did something" and "participated in" the fight "about justice and equality." And it will make them feel good. That's all this is: one giant, loud, and expensive feel-good session, by people whose entire universe is constructed around "feeling good" about "doing the right thing." It's large-scale onanism.

Moving on, there's the war veteran:

"I've been to war, I volunteered to go. That would put me in a situation where I would applaud our military. But I've seen war where it is necessary and unnecessary."
So far so good. The argument about necessity of war is perfectly reasonable. But then it slides off the rails:
"We should act together through the UN. For all its faults it has some legitimacy."
The United States, the world's oldest democracy and savior from totalitarian idiocy several times over, apparently has less legitimacy than "some" possessed by a worthless discussion club populated by adherents of every manner of revolting political theory imaginable. Nice. Oh, and of course:
"And I don't think America has acted properly with respect to Palestine and Israel. The Islamic world must see that as part of the problem."
Bad George Bush! How dare you and America offend the precious Muslim world by not letting Israel be crushed by genocidal religious lunatics! Listen to your betters at the UN!
" If the Democrats had got in I don't think the war would have happened."
Really? Not even with that Lieberman guy as the VP?

On we go to the professional protester (or as the Independent calls him, the "seasoned activist"):

Dean Ryan, 37, from east London has been going on demonstrations for 12 years. He has protested against racism and the BNP, for pensioners' rights, and has attended anti-capitalist marches.
12 years? Somebody seriously needs to get a life.
"The way they are treating the Iraqis is disgusting. It is outrageous, they are taking oil to pay American companies to rebuild the country they bombed."
On the other hand, leaving Iraqis to die in Saddam's torture cells to ensure harmony at the UN -- that's perfectly acceptable.
"If Britain and America are serious about rebuilding Iraq they should pay reparations. The more pressure we put on them the more they are going to think twice about going to other countries, and we are showing people in the Middle East it is not the West against the Middle East."
I'm curious if this "seasoned activist" is willing to pay reparations to all the people that Saddam killed while he was marching to protect him. Also, given the amount of money the U.S. is spending to reconstruct Iraq ($87 billion ring a bell), I'd say reparations are a moot issue.

Finally, we get to "the young mother," whose presense is explained thus:

Jo Lazzarie, 23, from Kent, is not demonstrating against the war. She will go with her son Jack, nine months, to protest against President Bush's policies on abortion.
What, no one to free Mumia?

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