~ Continued from Part I ~
Today we're sustaining second instalments on two outstanding issues.
- For starters a follow-up on Thursday's sorry state of affairs in the Dutch Parliament.
- And Germany's magazine Die Zeit  has a commentary by Thomas Assheuer to Pascal Bruckner's polemic in defense of Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Enlightenment: Fundamentalism or Racism of the Anti-racists", a peculiar title if you don't know that multi-culturalists see all that isn't relativist as fundamentalism; yesterday the focus was on Christianity, today it's the Enlightenment ideologies that are the culprits.
I don't have access to the original commentary in Die Zeit, so I'll have to build a refute on the basis of Signandsight's gist of it: the commentary starts with a rather empty qualification, calling Bruckner's article a 'breathless invective'. It's a wonder why they don't leave bitching to those who know how to apply it artfully!.
Having that out of they way, we get to substance of sorts with Assheuer's rather enigmatic conclusion that Bruckner is 'off target':
"... in the field of theory, multi-culturalism was the attempt to undo the Gordian knot of how a society ... treat(s) people who interpret these liberties as an attack on their religion. That is the question of questions." What? In Canada, in 1971?
Well, in the meantime we know the answer to the question of questions, which in fact should be reading "How do we deal with people in our midst that are out to destroy us from within?" I do understand reality on the ground is very disappointing to nice, liberal people who only want the best for everybody, but what can you do? Maybe it's time to start learning how to deal with reality ... In the meantime - it may be Signandsight's translation that's at fault here - but I don't see how Mr Assheuer's comment in any way refutes or even touches Bruckner's points.
Back to the Dutch Parliament, for which a very strong stomach is required indeed. Well, the jury is in. Today there's an avalanche of reactions of feckless peawits shouting 'Discrimination', missing the point altogether. Others seem to be having a vague inkling about what it is they're trying to accomplish - a perfectly legitimate query to be remedied by an Act of Parliament - but they're simply incapable of pinning it down, all fuzzed up as they are by the opposition interpreting their attempt in terms of emotion: "not very nice eh, calling people's loyalty into question", feigning shock and indignation over so much rudeness and ill will.
God give me strength! To think that people have given their lives to make this possible! In May it'll be one year since I emigrated and nobody in Holland as yet has even the beginnings of an inkling there's something wrong in the State of Malcontent. Of course it's relativism in action: there is no truth, only opinion and if you have an opinion that's considered unpleasant, you are at fault for not changing it to a more agreeable one: fact is confused with persons is confused with opinion is confused with bad manners!
Yesterday's developments can be comprised as follows:
- The Moroccan would-be junior Minister ascertains us of his loyalty till death do us part, after which he wants to be interred in heavy Dutch clay soil: that should convince us he's no 007 in His Majesty's Secret Service for the African dessert Kingdom.
- The Turkish junior Minister in spe can hardly wait to put her maiden policy in action, granting a general amnesty to thousands of illegal immigrants to be set loose on the continent, and says to have no intention of jilting the Turkish passport since she isn't doing anything illegal ... you know. Indeed the ditched Act should have seen to that! Oh, have I mentioned her intended place of business? At the Justice Department, top floor ... not the basement day care center!
In the meantime it transpired that the Speaker has no good excuse at all for declaring a member's Motion out of the order! She acted on her own initiative and out of politically correct indignation: and that, as they say, is that - none of her esteemed colleagues gets insulted on her watch! Case closed.
Of course there are academic relativist experts being unearthed who see no problem at all with Ministers and Secretaries carrying passports of foreign powers, but Maastricht University Professor Tak tells Elsevier Magazine that the matter should have been dealt with a long time ago. Unlike others, he does see risks involved. "National security is at risk - to my generation that grew up closer to World War II it is perhaps a more sensitive issue, but yes there is a risk and the point is, are we willing to take it? The Speaker has no business declaring the Wilders party's Motion out of the order. No matter what your take is on that party, from my expertise and perspective it is sheer necessity to debate the matter. But then that party, which has nine seats in Parliament and represents half a million voters is being told to shut up! Totally undemocratic. Pressure must be exerted on the Turkish and Moroccan governments  that force descendants of former citizens to automatically retain the parents' nationality. I ask you, is that acceptable? They want to keep their citizens without accepting the responsibility. It's undermining the principle of reciprocity and it is simply anti-social."
Elsevier confirm my suspicions that - having learnt nothing of the cold-shouldering of Pim Fortuyn (whose party has been decimated in the November elections) - we have all the makings here of a new cordon sanitaire, this time of Wilders' party. Next elections he may well double his seats! Hey, what's that squeak I hear? Oh, it's Leviathan  - ready for hatching ...
Saturday, February 17, 2007
~ Continued from Part I ~