The Official Blog Of Edward Cline

Month: April 2016

Poisonous Peas in a Pod

The Chancellor was a terrorist

The
Washington Examiner on April 24th, in its article, “Obama:
Germany’s Merkel is right
on refugee welcome,” reported President Barack
Obama’s European musings on immigration:

President Obama says German
Chancellor Angela Merkel is “on the right side of history” in how she has
responded to the influx of thousands of Syrian refugees surging into Europe.
At a press conference Sunday,
the president said he is “proud” of Merkel and the German people for their
open-door policy of migrants fleeing violence and uncertainty in their home
country.
“She is on the right side of
history on this,” Obama said as he stood next to Merkel in Hannover, Germany.
“And for her to take on some very tough politics in order to express not just a
humanitarian concern but also a practical concern, that in this globalized
world, it is very difficult for us to simply build walls.”
And now
many Europeans are fleeing
their home
countries for points that do not welcome hordes of destructive
and hostile Muslim barbarians who have boasted that Germany and other Western
countries are “dead meat.”  Doors are
opening all over the Continent. However, they are swinging doors that can snap
back to strike Merkel harshly on her electoral derriere.
Obama
again:
Obama’s praise comes after
Merkel faced fallout in a referendum of sorts on her immigration policy. In
last month’s state elections, Merkel’s party, the Christian Democrats, took a
beating. An anti-immigration party made significant gains.
Obama has promised to admit
100,000 Syrian and Iraqi refugees into the U.S. this year. He faces pushback
from Republicans who fear a possible security threat. GOP presidential
candidates, like front-runner Donald Trump, have attacked Obama’s pledge to
allow refugees into this country.
But it
is not just a security threat in back of those concerns. The literal invasion
of the U.S. by hordes of Muslims – especially Syrian, Iraqi, and Somalian
Muslims – poses a cultural and political threat, as well. The introduction of
so many hostile and assimilation-resistant Muslims is part and parcel of the Muslim
Brotherhood’s
overall plan to subvert the country from within, per the
General Memorandum of 1991. The
country can be rotted from within through demographics and an overall plan to
perpetuate the welfare state.
The
ideological symbiosis between Obama and Merkel is worth exploring. Obama and
Merkel are political leaders determined to “remake” their countries in
conformance with their mutual ideologies. Obama’s motivation has been
repeatedly demonstrated to be rooted in an undiluted malevolence for America,
one closely allied to his Alinsky/Communist agenda. He wants to swamp America
and Western culture with hordes of people “of color” more amenable to the
welfare state (at least, that is his premise) so that the demographics shift to
perpetuate the welfare state, statism, and the Democratic grip on the country.
He wants to create the “new American” who isn’t automatically “white.”
Dare, if
you will, accuse Obama of racism, of racism by explicit policy and little
disguised malice. Obama’s “resettlement” program, paid to Christian “charities”
with tax dollars, is community-organizing along ethnic lines. It differs little
from Merkel’s except in scale.
I am the “new American man”
Merkel is largely
motivated by her East German Communist upbringing. Her Communist ideology is
proof against all reason. The collapse of Soviet Russia in 1989-1991
with its East European satellites, including East Germany, left her in an
ideological void, as an outlander. In her life, there was no “yearning to
breathe free” of tyranny. Her desire and career path were to become a member of
the East German Communist establishment. How could she “relate” to freedom?
There was no way she could truly sympathize with what millions of East Germans
wanted and what West Germans had enjoyed for decades. She could not “relate” to
it without voluntarily undergoing a philosophical and moral sea change, in her
politics and in herself. And that was not going to happen. She was in her
mid-thirties when the Berlin Wall came down. Too much energy had been invested
in pushing the collectivist line. The girl can’t help herself.
You can
take the statist ideologue out of tyranny and place him in a relatively free
political and social environment, but, after a certain age, you can’t take the
statist out of the person, together with a tenacious need and compulsion to
control things and people. The ideologue isn’t going to be impressed or
persuaded by the cornucopia of wealth available in a free country. He will
enjoy them, and even extol them, but he will always stump for a “higher”
purpose for living other than enjoying life.
Merkel’s
grand design is to fabricate the “new German man” who will be of the old stock
of Germans somehow amalgamated with immigrant Muslims. Germans are proving
highly resistant to the shotgun marriage.
On April 12, 1961, Yuri
Gagarin’s historic spaceflight shook the world, sending enthusiastic crowds of
Soviet citizens onto the streets to celebrate. Just a few months later, the Twenty-Second
Congress adopted new Communist Party program, which set the goal of building
the foundations of communism in the Soviet Union by 1980. This all-out drive
toward communism had two crucial components: the construction of a material and
technical basis of communism, and the development of the “new Soviet man” – “a
harmonic combination of rich spirituality, moral purity, and physical
perfection.” Who better than Gagarin to embody this new ideological construct?
From “New
Soviet Man
: Inside Machine: Human Engineering, Spacecraft Design, and the
Construction of Communism.” Science, Technology and Society Program, E51-185,
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA
02139; April 2005)

From the October Soviet coup d’état of the Provisional government to the wheezy collapse of
the Soviet Union in December
1991
, Soviet citizens and East Europeans were indoctrinated on the vision
of the “new Soviet Man.” He
was a creature who would mindlessly fit into Communist ideology and be in every
way compatible with it, not only in space, but on the ground in industry and
agriculture and economic regulation. He would be “programmed” to make Communism
be his only motivation, to help to make it work, and be instilled to labor ceaselessly
to advance the triumph of Communism in Russia and everywhere else.
Reuters
reported in August 2015 on the mass immigration into Germany:
The number of immigrants living
in Germany rose by 3.7 percent last year to a record high of 11 million and a
fifth of the population is of migrant background, the Federal statistics Office
said on Monday.
The figures highlight Germany’s
growing reliance on foreign-born workers to drive its powerhouse economy,
Europe’s largest, as well as its acceptance of hundreds of thousands of
refugees. Many of the immigrants came from other European Union countries, such
as Poland, Romania, Italy, Bulgaria, and Hungary.
Last year, the number of people
living in Germany of a migrant background had risen by around 1.5 million, or
10 percent, from 2011. The native population – excluding people of a migrant
background – fell by 1.4 percent.
Poles,
Romanians, and Hungarians might assimilate into Germany enough to be taken for
Germans, and perhaps even “feel” German. But Muslims have proven relentlessly
over time to resist becoming “German,” that is, to not surrender their Islamic
identities, but who, not so ironically, expect their host countries to adapt
and defer to Islam. Second generation Muslim immigrants, particularly
Turks
, are not the “new German men.” They are in the vanguard of Muslim
activism and even terrorism. The only thing Muslims are busy doing is preying
on European women, harassing European men, hanging around in refugee and asylum
centers, trashing private property seized by the government to house “refugees,”
and perhaps doing a little dope business on the side to supplement their
welfare state handouts.
Refugees and asylum seekers coming to your town

About
those rape statistics in Germany
and Scandinavia,
one must ask oneself: Are Muslim women so unattractive that they are not the
usual victims of Muslim rapes?  Well, it
might have something to do with their Islamic dress, which is to make them as
unalluring as possible.

But
Merkel, to Obama’s applause and pats on the back, sees the barbarians as the
“new Germans.” They will become the new “workforce” of Germany.  Walid
Shoebat
and others disagree vehemately and pointedly.
German Municipalities
estimates that just two percent of Muslim
refugees
in the rehabilitation program are ready to take a job. “You
are not ready to work.” The stamp is the vast majority of refugees by the
municipalities. Daniel Greenfield, in his article The Death of Europe, said: “The
Muslim migrants are meant to be the retirement plan for an aging Europe. But
the Mohammed retirement plan won’t save European Socialism. It will bury it.”
Politiken: The
figures cover refugees who have been granted asylum in Denmark and 31 in
December were doing an integration program in a municipality. The refugees
receive either cash or integration performance.
Merkel
also wants more propaganda spread through Africa inviting the
diseased beggars there to come to Germany and learn a trade. Good luck with
that. What Europe and America needs, in addition to “resettled” ISIS fighters,
are the killers of Boko Haram and Al-Shabaab planted in our midst.
The
retirement plan that Islam has in store for Europe is to end Europe by
invitation from Merkel and her political ilk elsewhere on the Continent. Islam is
in Europe
. And Europe is now a satrap of Islam.

Chomsky at the Bit

Fast on
the heels of publishing “And
the World Was Made Right
” (Rule of Reason, April 23), which has had an
incredible and positive response from many quarters, I happened to read Cliff
Kincaid’s review of Michael Walsh’s The
Devil’s Pleasure Palace: The Cult of Critical Theory and the Subversion of the
West
on AIM’s
site (Accuracy in Media). The review is titled “Defunding
the Marxist Madrassas
.”

Mortar boards on freshly minted flatheads


Kincaid’s
review of the Walsh book opens with some richly deserved swipes at Noam Chomsky, the MIT
professor of everything under the sun. For decades, the name, “Noam Chomsky,” for
me, at least, has evoked the image of a leftist college professor instructing
his student victims to “thoroughly chew” his latest theory – say, of Cognitive closure, or of Psychological nativism, or of Recursion in
language
— until they can memorize it and recite it back to him verbatim
(preferably in a choral mode). That is, after all, the nature of an Islamic madrassa – to memorize – not to understand
or critique the Koran and other Islamic texts – until one’s mind is completely
subverted by masses of illogic and non sequiturs and one is no longer able to
think. Once one has memorized by rote every little comma, simile, and metaphor
of the Koran, one is ready to join the Taliban (Islamic students) to kill and
terrorize.
And that
is, more or less, what American students of Chomsky (and students of his ilk
elsewhere in academia) to go out and do: become activists for Socialism, Social
Justice, to Occupy Wall Street, occupy your home, occupy your business, and
become the snowflakes for “safe places” and the hoarse hollerers for women’s
restrooms being open to transgenders and LGBTs of every stripe. And also become
advocates and demonstrators for Muslim immigration and trigger-warning
sensitive freshmen.

Noam Chomsky, a Marxist professor who says he
has been at MIT for 65 years, maintains that we need a new economic system. He
has endorsed something called “the next system,” which is supposed to replace
free enterprise capitalism. My counter-proposal is for a “next system” to
replace Chomsky and other Marxists in academia. My old friend, “Jimmy from
Brooklyn,” a legendary anti-communist, says what we need is the defunding of
the “Marxist Madrassas,” otherwise known as college and universities.

The “next
system” appears to be the total collectivization of the country, and especially
of the realm of education. Here, at Alternet,
is Chomsky caught with his socialist pants down:
An initial signatory to the Next System statement, Chomsky
explores the connections between culture, mass movements, and economic
experiments—which in “mutually reinforcing” interaction, may build toward a
next system more quickly than you may think. 
Next System Project: As the Next System Project
engages in dozens of university campus-based teach-ins across the country, what
do you think of such approaches to engaging campus communities in deep,
critical inquiry—can they help transform our society?
Doubtless
Chomsky applauds Bernie Sanders, the socialist presidential candidate. But perhaps
he instead regards Sanders as a doddering, buffoonish, semi-senile old fool suffering
from genuine cognitive closure. That would be a fair assessment of the failure
in carpentry.
And here
is statement by “the next system,” a statement that dances around the term “socialism”
and is an instance of sociological puffery:
We are at or near the bottom among advanced
democracies across a score of key indicators of national
well-being—including relative poverty, inequality, education, social
mobility, health, environment, militarization, democracy, and more.
We have fundamental problems because of fundamental
flaws in our economic and political system. The crisis now unfolding in so
many ways across our country amounts to a systemic crisis.
Today’s political economic system is not programmed to
secure the wellbeing of people, place and planet. Instead, its priorities
are corporate profits, the growth of GDP, and the projection of national
power.
Large-scale system change is needed but has until
recently been constrained by a continuing lack of imagination concerning
social, economic and political alternatives. There are alternatives that
can lead to the systemic change we need.
Kincaid
goes on:
Of course, Chomsky does not want to replace the system
that pays his salary and provides a platform for his Marxism. A real
alternative to the current economic system would take the taxpayers off the
hook for subsidizing state colleges and universities that keep Marxists like
Chomsky on the payroll and undermine traditional values.
It is said that Chomsky is a “philosopher, linguist,
and social critic.” Whatever this means, it looks like he has more time to
spout his Marxism than to teach his students anything worthwhile. Perhaps that
is his intention. By failing to educate students in practical skills useful for
real jobs, he leaves them hopeless and despondent about the system that he
wants them to replace. His students are his cannon fodder for “the next
system,” which is supposed to be brought into being by students who are turned
into activists through brainwashing sessions organized by the likes of Chomsky.
Michael
Walsh, as Kincaid reveals, offers a truly radical solution to today’s college “crisis”
and the unimaginable debt assumed by college students and by the taxpayer:
scrap the Ivy Leagues, state colleges, and community colleges, put the Marxists
out of work, and patronize the plethora of existing and future online
universities each of which would offer tuition costs infinitesimally lower than
the standard costs of about $20,000 per year.

Average, semi-literate
college student,
now smothered in Federal
kudzu debt


Michael Walsh is the latest to document the influence
of cultural Marxism in academia and American society at large. His book, The
Devil’s Pleasure Palace: The Cult of Critical Theory and the Subversion of the
West
, examines how American institutions have been taken over by the
likes of Chomsky. The solution, however, cannot rest simply with exposure or
even reform. The cultural Marxists will not cede power over the minds of the
young. Instead, the solution is to establish new institutions that attract
parents and young people to educational alternatives which promise marketable
skills and jobs in the real economy.
Those alternatives are usually grouped under the
rubric of online learning. These low-cost alternatives to brick-and-mortar
colleges and universities can also address another pressing problem for many
young people—massive college debt through federal loans that in 40 percent of
the cases are not repaid. The current federal student loan debt stands at a
staggering $1.2 trillion. The current system is unsustainable.
It is
unfortunately true that many of these online or vocational schools are already
in hock to or dependent on federal and government financing
schemes
for their students (such as Kaplan
and ECPI).
The ultimate solution is to get the government out of education altogether.

Writes Kincaid:
Judging by the success of Sanders in the presidential race, it
would appear that the real crisis is that higher education has failed to
prepare young people for the future and has instead left them struggling to pay
tens of billions of dollars in student loan debt. However, those turning out
for Sanders have been led to believe that more taxes and debt are the solution.
This approach leaves Marxists like Chomsky, still ensconced in academia,
agitating for the “next system” of socialism that will leave young people even
more hopeless.
Even if their debts
are “forgiven,” and the federal debt monkey is off their backs, most of these
students will be ill-prepared to live independent, productive lives in the real
world. Kincaid writes:

This process of subversion has been going on too long to hope for
reform of the academic institutions that have been captured and rotted from
within. We need to defund those that already exist, and create new institutions
to replace those in the hands of the cultural Marxists. Some of them are online
structures such as Amberton
University
and Western Governors University.
My friend “Jimmy from Brooklyn” says we need to go further, in regard to existing colleges and universities, and demand a “separation of Marx and state,” so that affirmative action for conservative professors can be implemented to strive for some sort of equality and real “diversity.”

Michael Walsh’s The Devil’s Pleasure Palace is a must
read for anyone who is concerned about the costs and the direction of higher
education. Today, in America, “higher” education more often than not means brainwashing
on psychedelic drugs of the Marxist kind.

Academics like Noam
Chomsky should be put out to pasture with Bernie Sanders before they destroy
more minds.
 
The
Devil’s Pleasure Palace
: The Cult of Critical Theory and the Subversion of
the West
, by Michael Walsh. Jackson, TN: Encounter Books, 2015.  280 pp.

And the World Was Made Right

It
would be interesting to chronicle the state of the world on the off chance that
everything in it would be made right per the demands and expectations of
today’s activists, social justice warriors, and champions of Social Progress.
This was done in a speech by Louis Farrakhan, head of the Nation of Islam, in a
commencement address delivered at the University of Chicago, at which he was
presented with an Honorary Doctorate in Racial Harmony.
·    All climate change deniers and skeptics were executed, as
advocated for years the Secret Society of the Global Warming Collect, by
professional hangmen and executioners hired from ISIS. The first executions
were presided over by Al Gore, former vice-president of the old U.S. European
culprits were transported to Raqqah, the capital of the Islamic State
Caliphate, and dispatched there with graphic footage broadcast to Europe. The
experienced executioners there made short work of the liars and falsifiers and
acolytes of false science. North American culprits were transported to Death
Valley, California, and ISIS executioners were flown in to perform their
service. The guilty had been hunted down and rounded up by the combined forces of
the European-Islamic Police, of the Special Multi-Gender Law Enforcement Force,
and of the American Federal Bureau of Intolerance (FBI) in coordinated raids
and dragnets. Once the deniers were gone,
all was made right in the world, and the world breathed easier
.

·  To the resounding cheers and excellently choreographed Maypole
dances of environmentalists
of every age and color everywhere, the Environmental Protection Agency seized
all private property and land in America and imposed rigorous controls on the
former owners (now reduced to the status 
of tenant farmers) governing the use of the new federal possessions. The
rules were so all-encompassing and strict that the tenants were unable to
produce or grow much of anything, but were blamed for dragging their feet.
Trained, armed, and experienced former Bureau of Land Management personnel were
empowered to police the land and to punish violators. Thousands of tenant
farmers were incarcerated in special FEMA camps, called Spotted Owl Campuses,
in Nevada and Illinois and put on short rations. These new felons were also
subjected to reeducation courses and new dietary regimes. And all was made right with the world, and a New Earth Day was proclaimed.

·     President Bernie Sanders presided over the free distribution of
just about everything, including college education, food, personal grooming
products, and gas rations. His taxing of major and middle income corporations and
small businesses at 99% was intended to pay for the program, but when IRS
personnel appeared at these venues, in many instances they found nothing but
closed doors or vacant premises. The Bureau of Printing and Engraving announced
a “temporary” halt in printing all the new money because of shortages of the
proper paper and of the necessary chemicals and inks, while the Treasury
Department also announced a halt in the mailing of “Freedom Checks” to everyone
because of a shortage of paper on which to print the checks. Suppliers of the
currency and check paper to the BPE and the Treasury Department were sued. But
President Sanders said the setbacks were just a “blip.” He was also quoted as
saying, “You can’t make an omelet without breaking heads.” One person was
arrested and sentenced by a kangaroo court to twenty years of hard labor for
having been overheard to say to a friend in private that President Sanders “not
only needed a walker to get to the john but also for his brain.” Still, all was made right in the world and bad-mouthers were taken out of
circulation, resulting in a significant drop in aural pollution.
·    The inauguration of the new  federal Multi-Gender Police (the MGP) was
feted by former U.S. President Barack Obama during a special ceremony in
Seattle. The new law enforcement tool was expected to work closely with the
re-tailored FBI. The MGP’s ranks were filled with heterosexuals, homosexuals,
lesbians, trans-genders, and people of unclassified orientation. True to Barack
Obama’s anti-gun philosophy, the troops were armed with only tasers, electronic
batons, modified cattle prods, and katanas. Cleverly designed uniforms, modeled
after samurai fighting armor, disguised the gender identity of each
policeperson. However, during its first assignment, the MGP retreated from a
food riot in Philadelphia, resulting in half the city being burnt down, its
spokesperson saying that sending the MGP into combat violated the “safe spaces”
of many of its members who weren’t quite ready to impose law and order. It also
claimed that many thousands of lives were saved by the MGP’s non-intervention
in the looting, destruction, and occasional killing. Still, all was made right in the world, as there was no more police brutality.
·    English was demoted from being the official lingua franca of the
U.S. Callers to various federal agencies, bureaus, and “crony” corporations
were asked to “Press 1 for Arabic, Press 2 for Spanish, Press 3 for English.”
Advertising and billboards (where they were permitted) had to communicate in
Arabic and Spanish first, with tiny English subtitles. And all was made right in the world, and illiteracy was no longer a
social stigma.
·        
The Islamic State of America reached a detente with the Hispanic
Speakers Alliance and Latino Lives Matter that would allow members of the three
entities free and unharassed existence in addition to free movement to and from
their particular spheres of influence. The truce was made necessary because it
was expected that most Mexicans would refuse to submit to Islam or become
Muslims (most of them being Catholics, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and Baptists), and
Muslims would refuse to become apostates, and a civil war was imminent. It was
mutually agreed that violence could be visited only on whites and other
infidels and non-Hispanics. And all was
made right in the world, and everyone breathed easier, except for the
disenfranchised.
·    White
privilege
was abolished under the guidance of Alicia
Garza
, Patrisse Cullors, and Opal
Tometi
, Black Lives Matter founders, with the guidance of Melissa
Click
, the former University of Missouri professor who accosted a student
journalist. A federal law was passed compelling all whites to wear the letter
“W” sewn on their clothing when in public. Jews were compelled to wear the
letters” WJ” on their clothing when in public. Whites were compelled to defer
rights of way to blacks on streets, restaurants, bars, laundromats, and in
other public places. Blacks were permitted to “knock out” whites with impunity
and without penalty. College history courses were stripped of all formal “white”
history and replaced with black, Mexican, Islamic, and LGBT histories.
Emulating the Saudi religious police, the Trayvon Martin Brigade was created
and was given the responsibility of enforcing black privilege on whites,
assisted by the MPG. White school children were required to learn “jive” and
“blacklish,” while the speaking of Standard English was outlawed and violators
were sentenced to 100 lashes with a whip or cane, whatever was handy. Whites
were not permitted to assemble in groups larger than four. Classical music was
banned, and also Elvis and Frank Sinatra. The MPG and FBI were tasked with
rooting out white “samizdat” that circulated old classic texts and scheduled
secret concerts, homeschooling, get-togethers, social gatherings, and lectures
in basements. The Statue of Liberty in New York Harbor was dynamited, and
replaced with a giant black tower that some said resembled a penis, but which
was denied by its federally-funded sculptor. And all was made right in the world, and everyone breathed easier,
because whiteness was now out of sight
.
·    
As in Islamic Europe, a vigorous drive was made to submerge
“white” culture beneath the lead-weight of “polypolitical” culture, if not
altogether obliterate it. Street names were changed to Arabic, Latino, or
African names. Germany and Sweden were entirely defoliated of Germanic and
Nordic character. “White” art was banished from public view, statues and
paintings depicting whites were destroyed, and museums were denuded of all
vestiges of “white” supremacy. Scandinavian, German, and French women were
required to “cover up” per Islamic rules, and also to expose themselves to
Turkish, Syrian, Somalian, and African “citizens” on request and to submit
without protest to their desires (complaints earned such women who complained
stiff fines and jail sentences). European males were required to wear abbreviated
tutus to better identify them to the new “citizens” and were a not permitted to
fight back when attacked without incurring automatic counter-charges of assault
and intent to commit riot and bodily harm. And
all was made right in the world, and no one was reminded of the oppressive past
of Western cultural imperialism
.
·    Israel was destroyed by two Iranian nuclear devices. Eager Palestinians
rushed to “occupy” the areas that were once “occupied” by the Jewish state,
although thousands of them died of radiation exposure when they marched into the
wasteland and attempted to settle there. All Jewish males, regardless of age,
in areas not affected by the nuclear bombs, were rounded up and executed; all
Jewish women, regardless of age, were executed in separate camps. Attractive
Jewish women and girls were selected to serve in special “comfort” centers for
the Palestinian elite. Arabs who had cooperated with or were on good terms with
Jews were identified and killed. Resistance to ethnic cleansing and slavery
earned instant death. Clouds of radiation, however, wafted from the wastelands
in shifting winds and caused millions of deaths and illnesses in Egypt, Jordan,
Gaza, and Iran. Radiation was also detected in North Africa, felling or
sickening thousands. Yet, all was right
with the world, as the Little Satan was at last consigned to nuclear flames
.

Not counting the eradication of diseases, inventing
electricity, cars, etc.
·      The Internet was taken over by the federal government, as well as
telephone and all other electronic means of personal communication, and run as regulated public services (when it was working). One could no longer in
private conversation call Muslim women in America fat, ugly, and sweaty; one
could no longer call Mexico’s culture second-rate; one could no longer aver
that the libidos of LGBTs were in corrosive limbos, without being hauled into
court and sentenced to five years hard labor for using offensive language and for
offending the feelings of protected minorities (which were no longer numerical
minorities, but now empowered ones). Informants were everywhere. The only individuals
who could not be charged with racism, bigotry, discrimination, hate crimes, and
other such crimes were Muslims, Latinos, and blacks. Only whites could commit
hate crimes and hate speech. Whites were encouraged to feel shame for being
white, and guilt for crimes committed by their ancestors hundreds of years
before. This act of contrition resembled in action and in speech the Muslim shadada or expression of insignificance
and submission, and was the brainstorm of Anjem Choudary,
a British Islamic agitator and provocateur. It was modified from the
traditional Muslim shadada for
infidels to practice penance for even existing. And the world was made right, when infidels and unbelievers offered
their necks to the sword…..
 
Of course,
you must realize that by the time all these and other conditions could be met,
the world’s population would exist in a pronounced tatterdemalion state, all
the things they were counting on having perished or been eliminated or been
outlawed. The world would stand still and be left in a smoking ruin, with great
masses staring into the void that their their social justice warriors,
environmentalists, LGBT champions, diversity dilettantes, economic levelers and
egalitarians, gender neuterers, and climate changers had created. All people
would be left with is the chance to gnaw on bones, or on each other.
The world
would be made right – according to the nihilists and to the gospel of Immanuel
Kant.

Review: Dangerous Men

A friend sent me a library discard chiefly
because she thought I would be interested in its cover of Clark Gable, for Dangerous Men: Pre-Code Hollywood and the
Birth of the Modern Man
, and the
Birth of the Modern Man
, by Mick LasSalle. The book
was published in 2002, and is available now only on Kindle, although there are
probably numerous scores of hard copies and paperbacks of it that can be had for
a song from various Amazon associated vendors.

The
cover is definitely interesting. The non-mustachioed Gable could very well be
cast as Cyrus
Skeen
, the hero of my private detective series set in San Francisco between
1928 and 1930. The only thing missing from Gable’s arresting and commanding
gaze is the lock of hair that often falls over Skeen’s brow and which his wife,
Dilys, is forever flicking away. Skeen’s ears, however, would be a mite
smaller.
One of
the most memorable contrasts LaSalle marks is the on-screen rivalry between
Gable and Leslie Howard, who both appeared in “Gone With the Wind” and “A Free
Soul” (1931). Howard is steamrolled by Gable over a woman. But Gable “had a way
of making any man in the vicinity look like he should be wearing a dress.”
(p.65) One look at Gable, and you know he’s not “transgender” material. He’d
more likely clean your clock if you ever questioned his virility or his
identity as a man.
LaSalle’s
book is also interesting in that it paints a picture of the changing status and
character of male characters in Hollywood between 1929 and 1934, the Pre-Code era, after
which the Hays Office of “voluntary” censorship put the kibosh on “immorality.”
Will Hays and his mostly Catholic and Presbyterian allies put visual and vocal
fig leaves on men and woman.  There is a
political stance in LaSalle’s book but it is difficult to nail down; he
implicitly endorses from the right, from the left, and from the middle, and he applauds
every position imaginable, as well as the stances taken by the stars he
discusses.
LaSalle
reviews and critiques with lucid and often biting retrospect the careers of
such memorable and forgotten Pre-Code
stars as Lon Chaney, Ramon Navarro, Richard Barthelmess, Edward G. Robinson,
Clark Gable, James Cagney, Robert Montgomery, John and Lionel Barrymore,
Charles Laughton, Gary Cooper, Warren William, John Gilbert, Douglas Fairbanks,
Jr. and Sr., Lee Tracy, Paul Muni, and Fredric March.
But his
principal position is stated about halfway into Dangerous Men:
More than anything else, the
movies of the time emphasized the primacy of the individual and the importance
of individual concerns, treating the government as a malign, or at best neutral
force. Shady characters, sly operators, and fast-talking con men were often
heroes, if for no other reason but that they were individualists making their
way in the world. Meanwhile, anyone representing organized power, such as business
or government, was part of the problem. That’s why private detectives were
almost always good guys, while policemen were usually nuisances. (p. 106)
The
onset of the Great Depression in 1929 helped to promote this narrative even on
through World War II and in our own time. But the “individualism” of which
LaSalle speaks has morphed into a mentally ill kind of narcissism highlighted
by “safe spaces” and “trigger warnings.” These certainly had not been invented
in 2002, when Dangerous Men was
originally published. But try to imagine actors of the caliber, presence, and
rough-and-ready style as Cagney, Robinson, Gable, or William whining about
having their safe spaces violated or requiring trigger warnings before some
actress began vamping them and showing them her legs. It would be too hilarious
for words. The contrast would be so violent that it would send any contemporary
social justice warrior into frothing, white-knuckled paroxyms of anger and
outrage. Oh, the insensitivity!
How did
the Production Code Administration, the enforcement arm of the Motion Picture
Producers and Distributors of America (MPPA),
come about? Through a little judicious arm-twisting and the appeal to some
“higher” moral standard – that is, the altruist, selfless brand.
…It was a result of the
well-organized effort by a small cabal of lay Catholics, who, working within
the church and the film industry, threatened the studios with a loss of
Catholic business if certain demands weren’t met.
Caving into pressure, the
studios appointed publicity man Joseph Breen as the first
head of the Production Code Administration, a new organization empowered with
the right to approve or deny the release of any studio film. As of July 1,
1934, Breen, a political reactionary and a raging anti-Semite, became the final
arbiter of screen content. He kept the job for nearly two decades. (p. xii)
It
didn’t hurt that Franklin D. Roosevelt took office in March 1933, with his
promise to “remake” the country as a welfare state with a population of hound-dog
faced dependents, in much the same manner as Barack Obama promised to “remake”
the country in order to “transform” its political, economic, and demographics
to something far more compatible with collectivism than FDR could ever have
imagined.

“Dangerous”
film censor Joseph Breen


Another
contrast, La Salle writes, is in the difference between most of the silent
films and the Pre-Code films. In Chapter 1, “Why Are These Men Smiling?” he
notes that:
The smiles of the silent heroes
suggested a whole attitude toward life, a confidence about the nature of
heroism and the ultimate forces of good and evil. Silent heroes not only
believed their victories were inevitable, but when they did win, they felt sure
enough to gloat a little. They did not go through life expecting the ground to
shift beneath their feet…. (p. 2)
But
LaSalle prefaced that observation with:
In the Pre-Code era, we find
new-fashioned heroes whose manhood was an authoritative force – not pretty
boys, not cannon fodder, not pawns of the system, but dangerous men. Together,
they represent a vision of manhood more exuberant and contentious, and at the
same time more humane, than anything that has followed on the American screen.
(p. xiii)
LaSalle
dwells on the importance of “irony” in Pre-Code films, a “virtue” hardly lost
in today’s film fare.
The great silent heroes of the
twenties, stars such as Douglas Fairbanks, Rudolph Valentino, Ramon Novarro,
and John Gilbert, were hardly sober men of affairs. They projected the modish
virtues: youth, confidence, physical beauty, dynamism, and personality. What
they…lack was irony. As historian Paul Fussell has asserted, irony was the
great and defining legacy of World War I. That modern sense of irony, seeping
into the culture as the twenties progressed, would ultimately make the silent
hero and his radiantly unshakeable smile seem old-fashioned indeed. (p. 4)
Irony,
in this cinematic context, I take LaSalle to mean that if the “hero” does not
laugh at himself for being a “hero,” then the audience will laugh at him. Or
take him with a grain of salt. Or the critics will. As a rule, critics have
always laid on the internal and external irony super-thick, even when praising
films they have liked.
Carole Lombard as Dilys Skeen

The
dangerous men of the Pre-Code era, however, were not “heroes,” strictly
speaking; they were thugs, gangsters, con men, cheats, a menagerie of ambiguous
moralists, and a variety of Don Juans who treated women like discarded Kleenex
and their victims as marks, patsies, and suckers. They were not of The Fountainhead or Atlas Shrugged caliber. In Western culture, true individualism had
never found a voice until the novels of Ayn Rand. The Pre-Code “heroes,”
however well they were played, were still the non-productive, essentially
parasitical dross of society.

(Gary Cooper’s old-fashioned
heroism was more suited to the Code era than to the Pre-Code era. He thrived in
the late thirties, forties, and fifties, making many signature films, including
“Mr. Deeds Goes to Town” [1936], “Meet John Doe” [1941], and “High Noon” [1952].
He died in 1961, at age sixty. P. 213)
Left
out of this sampling of Cooper’s films are “The
Fountainhead
” (1949) and “For
Whom the Bell Tolls
” (1943).
Now
that there is no enforceable Code, no powerful censor to play Bowdler to
Breen’s latent prurience, the ground keeps shifting under the feet of our
culture’s purported “heroes.” It’s deuces wild.  Anything goes. The Production Code was never
truly enforced. It more or less lapsed into irrelevancy in the 1940’s, and the MPAA
(the Motion Picture Association of America) formally abandoned the Code in
1966, replacing its bizarre guidelines with a wholly arbitrary “rating” system
whose center of gravity seems to revolve around the definition of “mature.” 
However,
I can see it now. Were some director to decide to produce Civic Affairs, and talked about the script with Clark Gable, Gable
would laugh and say, “Hey. I like this scene. I get to kick this Breen
character in the pants. That’ll be fun to shoot! Can we get Jimmy Stewart? And who’s
playing Skeen’s wife? I could really work with Carole Lombard! She’s a lot of
fun!”
Dangerous
Men: Pre-Code Hollywood
and the Birth of the Modern Man
, by
Mick LaSalle. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 2002. 273 pp.

How to Not Talk About Islam

Not mincing words in Boris Johnson’s London

Boris
Johnson, Mayor of London, knows how to not talk about Islam.




Across
the sea, Daniel Greenfield, Stephen Coughlin, and a few others not detached
from reality, also know how to not talk about Islam.
Boris
Johnson wants to find a new term for linking Islamic terrorism without
mentioning Islam or Muslims. Or even terrorists or terrorism.
Daniel
Greenfield et al. do not think you
can discuss Islamic terrorism without mentioning Islam. If you talk about
Kellogg’s Corn Flakes, you are talking about a cereal, and not about sushi or
hummus. Finding a new term for Islamic terrorism isn’t necessary. The current
term says it all.
Boris
Johnson does not believe that Islamic “radicalization” has anything to do with
Islam. “Radicalization” is a very real term to him, yet it has nothing to do
with Islam. By what are British, American, and European Muslims being
“radicalized”? The answer to this question is to Johnson as elusive as Peruvian
guano dung. He tries several explanations but none of them rings true, for they
all avoid “Islam” like the plague. It’s almost funny how finicky he is when
trying to solve a problem by evading the simplest answers.
The
title of this column lends itself, at Boris Johnson’s expense, to an old Monty
Python skit, “How not to
be seen
.” Or, how not to be heard or seen speaking of Islam in any but
praiseworthy and respective language. Language that deprecates or indicts Islam
is out of the question. In Britain, it probably isn’t even legal.
Boris Johnson about a year
ago, in a June 28th Telegraph article, “
Islamic
State? This death cult is not a state and it’s certainly not Islamic,
” tackled the conundrum
with a subheading, “We must settle on a
name for our enemies that doesn’t smear all Muslims but does reflect reality.”
To Johnson, ISIS, or ISIL, is merely a “death cult” and has no relation to
Islam. It isn’t fair to Islam or to Muslims, he says, to characterize Islamic
terrorism as something performed exclusively by hooded Muslims who usually
quote Koranic verses while broadcasting their latest beheading, stoning, or
hurling of a gay from a rooftop. Johnson writes:
If we are going to defeat our enemies we have to know who they are. We
have to know what to call them. We must at least settle on a name – a
terminology – with which we can all agree. And the trouble with the fight
against Islamic terror is that we are increasingly grappling with language, and
with what it is permissible or sensible to say.
Johnson first concedes that it is Islamic
terrorism that is the “enemy.” However, to call it “Islamic terror” is an
unjustified exercise of “profiling.” And in Britain, no longer a bastion of
freedom of speech, profiling Muslims and connecting them with Islamic terrorism
is no longer permissible.
But what are the objectives of this terrorism? Is it religious? Is it
political? Is it a toxic mixture of the two? And what exactly is its
relationship with Islam? Many thoughtful Muslims are now attempting –
understandably – to decouple their religion from any association with violence
of this kind.
Many “thoughtful Muslims,” however, are performing
incredible mental and linguistic contortions to dissociate or “decouple” Islam
from terrorism. The contortions are but exercises in taqiyya, as detailed in
Stephen Coughlin’s Catastrophic
Failure: The Blindfolding of America in the Face of Jihad.
This important work was partly
reviewed in January in “ Interfaith
Bridges to Islam
” on Rule of Reason. 
Johnson
writes:
…They are not
running a state, and their gangster organization is not Islamic – it is a
narcissistic death cult….
Yes, ISIS employs thugs, killers, sadists, rapists, gangsters, and
other homicidal creatures who to a man hope to gain admittance to “Paradise”
and 72 virgins by submitting wholeheartedly to Islam and Allah’s will. Yes,
ISIS is a state. It has a government, of sorts, a currency, of sorts, and it
works ceaselessly to preserve itself as a state. It’s called the Islamic State
of Iraq and Syria. The term “State” is not accidental. It does not call itself
the Islamic Club, the Islamic Fellowship, or even the Islamic Brotherhood. ISIS’s
main goal is to establish a caliphate in as much territory as it can conquer.
Rehman’s point is
that if you call it Islamic State you are playing their game; you are
dignifying their criminal and barbaric behavior; you are giving them a
propaganda boost that they don’t deserve, especially in the eyes of some
impressionable young Muslims. He wants us all to drop the terms, in favor of
more derogatory names such as “Daesh” or “Faesh”, and his point deserves a
wider hearing.
But then there
are others who would go much further, and strip out any reference to the words
“Muslim” or “Islam” in the discussion of this kind of terrorism – and here I am
afraid I disagree. I can well understand why so many Muslims feel this way.
Whatever we may think of the “truth” of any religion, there are billions of
people for whom faith is a wonderful thing: a consolation, an inspiration –
part of their identity.
 The Islamic Anthill, at the Kaaba, Mecca

And we
mustn’t leave them in a state of disconsolation. Somehow, calling killers
killers is “playing into their game,” and “dignifying their criminal and
barbaric behavior.” We are, Johnson implies, granting Islamic terrorists some
sort of legitimacy related to their “hijacking” Islam to better satisfy their
homicidal lusts. But Islam is an ideology that sanctions whatever homicidal
lusts may motivate the killers. It is they who are dignifying their crimes. Boris
Johnson then shakes his head in resignation.

…Why do we seem to taint a whole religion by
association with a violent minority?
Well, I am afraid there are two broad reasons why some
such association is inevitable. The first is a simple point of language, and
the need to use terms that everyone can readily grasp. It is very difficult to
bleach out all reference to Islam or Muslim from discussion of this kind of
terror, because we have to pinpoint what we are actually talking about. It
turns out that there is virtually no word to describe an Islamically-inspired
terrorist that is not in some way prejudicial, at least to Muslim ears.
We must
have a name, a term, one which identifies the killers. Unfortunately, the
overwhelming number of killers are Muslims acting in the name of Islam, whether
they’re “soldiers” of Allah in the fields of ISIS or bombing Paris or Brussels
Airport. “A” cannot be “A” because too many people are in the “A” category, and
resent being so labeled. We must somehow render “A” a non-“A.”
Johnson
then wonders how he can have Aristotle and eat him, too.
If we purge our vocabulary of any reference to the
specifically religious associations of the problem, then we are not only
ignoring the claims of the terrorists themselves (which might be reasonable),
but the giant fact that there is a struggle going on now for the future of Islam,
and how it can adapt to the 21st century. The terrorism we are seeing across
the Muslim world is partly a function of that struggle, and of the chronic
failure of much Islamic thinking to distinguish between politics and religion.
He will
not, in the end, admit that Islam by its nature does not distinguish between politics
and religion. It does not separate church and state or mosque and state. They are
one and the same. Ask any ISIS killer, or any mild-mannered imam, or any humble
mullah. They will tell you the same thing in so many words.

Daniel Greenfield
in his April 20th Sultan Knish column, “The
Fallacy of Focusing on Islamic Radicalization
,” is an antidote to Johnson’s
agonizing folderol.  

Radicalization
programs, under euphemisms such as CVE or Countering Violent Extremism, assume
that Islamic terrorism can be countered by forming a partnership with Muslim
groups and social services agencies. While the West will ease Muslim
dissatisfaction by providing jobs and boosting their self-esteem to make them
feel like they belong, the Muslim groups will tackle the touchy issue of Islam.

These partnerships achieve nothing because social services don’t prevent
Islamic terrorism; they enable and fund the very no-go zones and dole-seeker
lifestyles that are a gateway to the Jihad. Meanwhile the Muslim partners are
inevitably Islamists looking to pick up potential recruits for their own terror
agendas. Western countries fund terrorism to fight terrorism and then partner
with still more terrorists to train their homegrown terrorists not to be
terrorists, or at least not the wrong kind of terrorists. This is what happens
when the “Islam” part of Islamic terrorism is ignored and outsourced to any
Islamist who can pretend to be moderate in front of a television camera for 5
minutes at a time.

None of this actually stops Islamic terrorism. Instead it empowers and
encourages it.

In
other language, CVE prefers squaring the root of pi over naming Islam. Pi is Islamic
“radicalization.” It can have an infinite number of explanations for Muslims being
“radicalized” stretching from Earth to the Dark Horse Nebula and beyond. The answers,
however, always without exception default back to Islam.

But Islam
is a whole number. It can’t be squared. Squaring it only leaves one with “one.”
Put another way, you can treat Islam as a pot of sea water. You can boil the
water away, and leave the salt behind. The violent
verses
of the Koran especially are the salt in Islam. It’s the violent
verses of the Koran on which the killers act.

Language,
for Johnson, is the key culprit. It must be sanitized somehow to both identify
the Islamic baddies and also to deny they have a lot to do with the Islam that
so many blameless Friday-Go-Mosque Muslims adhere to. Language must conform to
wishful thinking or delusions. It must never, never be anchored to reality. That
would be “radicalization” and we want none of that. 

Johnson gives an exquisite demonstration of how
to not talk about Islam, while at the same time talking about it. Quite a feat
of  Saussurean semiotics.

Death Cults in the Culture

There
is a growing obsession with death in what passes today for our culture. This
would not be a disturbing trend were it simply a fringe phenomenon. But it is
ubiquitous throughout the culture.

The first series I discuss here is “Dexter.”  I have watched the whole series (seven
seasons, from 2006 to 2013), but it was brought to my attention by Stephen
Coughlin in his “
Strategic
Overview: Understanding the Threat & Strategic Incomprehension in the War
on Terror,” p. 6, a synopsis of the salient points of Coughlin’s Catastrophic
Failure: Blindfolding America in the Face of Jihad.
Coughlin writes in
“Strategic Overview”:
From Catastrophic Failure [p. 34], “The “Dexter
Standard,” was written to highlight the ridiculousness of the constraints
placed on counterterrorism
efforts to understand the nature of the threat.
It argues there should be no controversy regarding analysis of a self-declared
enemy’s self-identified warfighting doctrine and explains this through
reference to the Showtime series Dexter.
In the fall 2011 season, the plot revolved around a serial killer who acts in
furtherance of an idiosyncratic End-Times scenario based on the New Testament’s
Book of Revelation. Upon recognizing
this, inspectors used Revelation as
an essential analytical tool. The necessity of using Revelation was never questioned even as some inspectors were either
nominally religious or non-believers. No one suggested that only Christian
inspectors were qualified to investigate.
(I
review in part Coughlin’s book in “Interfaith
Bridges to Islam
” on Rule of Reason.)
Dexter” is
Dexter Morgan, a forensic specialist in blood spatter analysis working for a
fictive Miami police department. On the surface he is a calm, likeable fellow
and gets along with most of his police colleagues. But, in secret, he is a
serial killer. In fact, he is a homicidal maniac. He is a kind of vigilante who
kills serial killers, and causes them to vanish. The bodies of his victims,
each of whom is responsible for horrendous crimes and is ritually murdered by
Dexter, are wrapped in plastic and dumped into the ocean. The problem with
this, at least with me, is that once the serial killers have been “stopped,” no
one knows what has happened to them and whether or not they are still at large
and will strike again after a puzzling hiatus. Early in the series some of the
bodies are discovered by a diving class. The unknown killer is instantly dubbed
“The Bay Harbor Butcher.”
Their
crimes are rarely solved by the police. The public is left in the dark about
the status or demise of the killers. The police are left with big question
marks. Dexter chooses not to enlighten them. He continues to analyze crime
scenes and eliminate the serial killers.
My
second problem with the series is that Dexter admits that he is homicidal. He
likes killing killers. But his killing is done within the parameters of a
“code” established by his father, a former (and now dead) policeman. This
figure appears occasionally in flashbacks as a real character in the series,
but mostly as a ghostly embodiment of a “conscience” with whom Dexter has an
ongoing internal dialogue. This device is in addition to the intermittent
voice-over narrative of Dexter.
Dexter
confesses to an overwhelming urge to kill. He began as a child with animals and
graduated to killing men (and some women, particularly the nurse who allegedly
poisoned his ill father). It is something he says he cannot control. He is only
at peace when he has killed someone. His father taught him everything he knows
about tracking killers, capturing them, and finally dispatching them without
leaving a single trace of himself or of the victim behind. He adheres to the
“code” but sometimes questions his father’s wisdom, and sometimes his ghostly
father questions his adopted son’s contemplated actions.
Overall,
however, justice is not served, and
is not meted out by Dexter, whether or not the death penalty can be condoned.
The killers die – and many of them deserve to die – but because society is
governed by a system of laws, their deaths at the hands and knives of Dexter
are outside the law. The premise that society is a system of laws and not of
men is not present in the series. If it had been at the beginning of the series,
the series would not have lasted seven seasons, and Dexter would have been
brought to justice himself very early on. The series ends, however, with Dexter
getting away with his crimes, and sailing his boat into a hurricane and faking
his suicide. In the end, he emerges as a bearded logger in Oregon.
The series
was suspenseful for a while. But something else must account for it having run
for seven seasons. Critics loved or hated it, and critical opinion was divided
over the conclusion, when Dexter simply vanishes and does not retire his career
and moves to Argentina with his soul mate. However, do people feel so doomed in
today’s political and cultural environment that they felt a kind of symbiosis
or empathy with Dexter, and the series served as a kind of dramatic
objectification of their sense of peril?
I discussed
“The Walking Dead” in several other columns on Rule of Reason, concluding with “The
Walking Dead: An Obituary
” on April 11th,  and will not belabor the series here again.
See “Negan
and the Walking Jihadists
” from March 25th, and “A
Walking Dead Postscript
” from March 26th.
What
has astonished me is the enormous “fan base” of the series. When the Season
Six finale
of the series was broadcast on AMC earlier this month, there was
an almost universal outcry or expression relief. This fan base must number in
the tens of thousands. Fans either felt cheated of the introduction of their
favorite villain, Negan, or said that it was about time the TV series adhered,
at least in part, to the Robert Kirkman graphic
comics
series, which the author and his artists have been churning out since
2003 and are likely to for many more. Fans treat the Negan character as though
he were the Second Coming of Christ, or behave online and at personal
appearances of the cast like bobbysoxers once did at the appearance of Frank
Sinatra.
Negan,
according to one mainstream critic, is “charismatic.” Perhaps even hypnotic. Well,
at least he is to “The Walking Dead” fan base, whatever form the series takes. For
the fans, Negan is a “necessary” evil in their hierarchy of values. Negan is a “successful”
looter and killer; Rick Grimes, the “good” group’s leader, on the other hand, has
failed in virtually everything he’s ever attempted.
The debut
of Negan, the apotheosis of
pure, laughing, nihilist evil in the series, who apparently thrives on the
applause of his “Savior” gang as he obliterates the head of a victim with his barbed
wire bat, for the comics fans is for them is a cause for celebration. “Once he
was lost, and now he is found.”
The TV series
of “The Walking Dead,” which began airing in 2010, diverges radically from the
graphic comics.  It treats the Kirkman
comics as a buffett of story lines and adapts specific comics content for the
TV series.  In many ways, the TV series
hardly resembles the comics. The comics fans have never been satisfied with the
TV series, but they watch it anyway. To judge by the comments
left
on the various “Walking Dead” discussion blogs, their
devotion to the comics and the TV series has been literally religious. It is an
obsession with a very crude and second-hand story theme. It is hardly original.
There are countless novels and a quite a few dozen films and TV shows that
dwell on an apocalypse. What the producers and directors of “The Walking Dead”
TV series have done, along with Kirkman and his graphic comics, is string out
the zombie story and fill in the blanks wherever the principals wish. One could
pen a book on the numerous plot holes in the TV series.

“The
Walking Dead” offers a moral conflict to most viewers and readers. In fiction,
moral conflict is necessary and a guide to successful living. But in “The
Walking Dead” the conflict is one in which evil wins, spreads its poisons, and
triumphs. For those enamored of the literature of the past, and for whom their
lives and their values are of paramount importance, evil and misery are not of
metaphysical importance. But, to judge by the reactions to “The Walking Dead”
and its finale (and on what is to come in the next season, and the popularity
of the graphic comics), evil is a necessary condition for living. It is “entertaining”
and welcome as a mode of surcease from the pathetic lives of readers and viewers.
(Parenthetically,
the societies established and sought after by Rick Grimes and others are
demonstrably collectivist in nature. The survivors live off the residue of a
collapsed civilization, but do not attempt to replicate a productive one. Whether
it is Grimes or Negan establishing a society, it is basically parasitical on
the corpse of a better world. That the TV series would begin to take a “left
turn” should not be surprising.

The stress is all on “family,” and “giving,” and
“sacrifice.” People who are too “individualistic” are not to be trusted.)

Islam is
a death cult. That has been demonstrated for one and a half millennia. At this
point, there would be no need to cite any one
of the numerous Koranic verses to
prove that Islam requires every one of its adherents – jihadist or passive – to
live by Allah’s whimsical diktats to better follow the road to Paradise, where,
upon arrival, all restrictive and confining bets and rules are off and the “afterlife”
would become one eternal orgy of wine and women and rivers of honey and trees
that drip raisins. At least, that is what is promised men, especially those who
become “martyrs” by killing Jews and infidels and die in the process. What’s in
it for Muslim women has never actually been detailed or laid out. There have
been plenty of adlib jokes about a pious Muslim woman’s reward in the great
Cloud Bank in the Sky, but neither the Koran nor the Hadith have much elaborated
on those prizes.
But Islam
is a death cult. In Islam the whole purpose of living is to die. And also to cause non-Muslims,
infidels, Jews, and others to die. Especially infidels, because everyone
(except Jews) it is claimed was born a Muslim, and those who stray from the “Eternal
Word” and the “true” faith are guilty of “infidelity.”
All one
really needs to understand Islam and how to live by it is the Secret Magic
Decoder Ring (supplied by Ovaltine) to translate the pretzel-like and often
incomprehensible  language of the Koran
and Hadith. Just follow the advice of Dr. Muhammad Muhsin Khan in his Road to Paradise.

So,
what is an Islamic “Paradise” like? Dr. Khan explains it all.
“The description of Paradise which the Muttaqun (the
pious believers of Islamic Monotheism) have been promised (is that) in it are
rivers of water the taste and smell of which are not changed, rivers of milk of
which the taste never changes, rivers of wine delicious to those who drink, and
rivers of clarified honey (clear and pure); therein for them is every kind of
fruit, and forgiveness from their Lord.
And what
about those poor devils who strayed? They shall:
…dwell forever in the Fire and be given to drink boiling water so
that it cuts up their bowels?” [(V47:15) The Noble Qur’an]
That
cutting up the bowels of the damned part sounds very messy. Looks like a job
for Negan. But, it won’t be a cakewalk to earn a place in the Divine Disco.
The Road to Paradise is full of hurdles and pits, and not so easy
to go through it![1] It needs great patience, self control, and to
avoid all evil deeds such as illegal sex, illegal talk (like backbiting,
telling lies, etc.), illegal foods and drinks; and to perform regularly
compulsory congregational prayers, fasting, Jihad (holy fighting in Allah’s
cause), and to give obligatory charity (Zakat), and to perform Umrah and Hajj.
And to insure that devout Muslims
understand the score, Khan beats a dead horse:
All glory and praise is to Allah, the One to Whom all dignity,
honor and respect are due; the Unique with perfect attributes, Who begets not,
nor is He begotten. He has no equal but He is the All-Mighty, Omnipotent. He
sent His Messengers and Prophets to guide humanity towards Monotheism, to
worship Him Alone, the only One Worthy of worship, and to warn them of the
eternal dire consequences of polytheism, associating partners with One Allah
and the worship of creatures.
What Islam promises is a
causeless existence. To reach that state, one must first die, but, before
dying, one must deny everything that is promised in Paradise. Go figure. It’s
the old carrot-and-stick routine writ large.
In a philosophical and moral
vacuum, it’s the fools of the world who rush in: those obsessed with death as a
means of escaping, or snuffing out, life.

Preview: Civic Affairs

 Welcome to a preview of Civic Affairs, the 17th Cyrus Skeen
detective novel, set in San Francisco in late May, 1929. The novel will be
published in late April, and will be available on Kindle and as a print book. Enjoy.

________________________________________________________________________________

Chapter 1: The
Bum’s Rush
“My wife and I have come to request an
unusual action to be taken by you, which, frankly, we hope you regard is in the
realm of civic duty, Mr. Skeen.” The man paused, waiting to hear some response
from Skeen. “We hope you are amenable to the idea, and respond with the utmost
civility, courtesy and responsibility.”
Jubal Pickett sat
in an armchair in front of Cyrus Skeen’s desk. Next to him sat his wife,
Lucinda Pickett. The Pickets had arrived in his office a few minutes ago,
without having called for an appointment. He did not know who they were and did
not know what they wanted.
Skeen asked, his brow darkening in an ominous frown, “Who are you again?
And what is it you want?”
Jubal Pickett was about half a foot shorter than Skeen. His oiled black
hair was parted precisely in the middle. He was thin, as was his face, with a
smidgen of a moustache crowning thin lips. Skeen observed that the man, whom he
estimated to be in his forties, had that constant, pinched look around his eyes
and nostrils as though everything he ever encountered was sour, displeased him,
and probably caused him upset stomachs. Skeen had the wild thought that Mr.
Jubal Pickett took castor oil with his coffee, regularly. His voice registered
perhaps a tad above countertenor. He wore a plain gray suit, a vest, and a
black bowtie. A gray derby was hooked over one knee.
His wife, Lucinda, was a prim, shriveled, almost emaciated woman with a
prune face that reminded him of Olga Quarre, a creature he had met in April on
a case. He guessed she was in her forties, as well, but it was hard to
determine her age. She wore a Quakerish bonnet and a lacy, high neck collar
that that did not quite encase her scrawny neck. She wore a bland brown jacket,
an ankle-length brown skirt, and brown, old fashioned women’s shoes that were
shin-high and which had to be laced up through a dozen eyelets. One claw-like
hand was wrapped around the handle of an umbrella; the other held a shapeless
cloth bag that was probably her purse. It had not rained in the city for days,
and was not raining now. Some people carried umbrellas regardless of the
weather.
When the Picketts had been shown into his office by Lucy Wentz, his
secretary, Skeen had not come around his desk or even risen to greet the
couple. They had not called to make an appointment, and behaved as though they
had a right to be here. According to Skeen’s code of etiquette, they did not
deserve the acknowledgement.
Mr. Pickett reached inside his suit jacket and produced a business card,
which he put on the edge of Skeen’s desk. “I am Jubal Salubrious Pickett, sir.
I am the president of the local city chapter of the National Committee of
Concerned Citizens for Public Decency.”
Skeen frowned. He had heard of the outfit. It had been campaigning for
years for the government to censor Hollywood movies, tasteless and indecent
material in vaudeville theaters, lascivious language in popular songs and
ballads, and commercial advertisements that displayed women in various stages
of dress or undress. It even condemned some men’s swimming suit ads. Its latest
pronouncements, guest editorials, actions, and interviews appeared in all the
city newspapers’ religion and Society pages every other weekend. It circulated
petitions to Congress and local politicians to have “indecency” banned from the
movie and vaudeville theaters, from the radio airwaves, and from printed
matter.
Committee of Concerned Citizens for Public Decency also campaigned
against the death penalty, against what it deemed “cruel and unusual sentences,
and for the mandatory rehabilitation of career criminals, and even started a
“pen pal” society of Concerned Citizens to write to convicts serving life
sentences. The Picketts themselves claimed to have a dozen “pen pal” inmates in
Folsom and other prisons in the state and around the country. Newspapers had
published some of the correspondence as items of human interest.
But there had always been organizations calling for reining in Hollywood
and commercial advertising and even for the censorship of books, plays, and
popular songs. Skeen could not keep count of the phenomena.  The National Committee of Concerned Citizens
for Public Decency was just another such outfit.
Mr. Pickett creased his brow and spoke in his odd voice. “My chapter had
a meeting last week, Mr. Skeen, and the local Committee has sent me to demand
from you a published apology for how you treated that minister and that
attorney on the occasion of their arrests for murder earlier this month. Your
treatment of them was dastardly, despicable, and utterly heartless. Yes, they
committed horrible crimes, but their prominence in this community was of such a
nature that they deserved the utmost respect and deference.”
Skeen blinked his eyes twice. Was he hearing things? The detective
frowned. His mouth was about to bend into a grin of incredulity. He asked,
“Would you mind repeating that, sir? I’m not quite sure I heard you correctly.”
Mr. Pickett obliged. Skeen grimaced. He could not stand the sound of the
man’s voice.
Skeen sat forward. “Mr. Pickett, fighting criminals is not a
please-and-thank-you business. The criminal’s wardrobe is irrelevant. If a
criminal is violent, he must be met with violence. If he is not violent while
being apprehended by me or by the police, then he won’t be banged up much. The
well-respected minister attacked me with an ax. The well-spoken attorney lied
to me and crushed the skull of a priest.”
Skeen then lost his control and patience. He laughed outloud. “An apology
from me? Are you out of your mind? Is
this some sort of college fraternity prank?”
The Pickett couple’s mouths both pursed in petulance. The man said, “If
you do not publish an apology, we shall launch a campaign to discredit you, and
to pressure the District Attorney to confiscate or revoke your private
investigator’s license. And also your right to carry a gun. We shall do
everything in our power short of calumny to stop your violence!”
Mrs. Pickett offered her own threat. “You are a disgrace to this city,
Mr. Skeen!” Her voice was a tad lower than that of a countertenor. “We shall
see you run out of town! You are an atheist, too! You soil the city with your
presence! You are no better than that atheist, Enoch Paige, who ought to be
electrocuted, but now, thanks to you, he’ll walk free to spread his smut and
anti-Christ filth!”
The woman was referring to the lecturer, Enoch Paige, who had been
accused of murdering his ex-wife, as well. Churches and civic organizations had
been howling for his blood.
Again, Skeen burst out laughing.
Mr. Pickett rose. His face was red with fury. “It will do you no good to
insult us, Mr. Skeen! We are deadly serious! You may laugh at us, and mock us,
but we shall have satisfaction and have the last laugh!”
Skeen rose and said, “I didn’t know you could laugh, Mr. Pickett.” He
came around the desk. As he did, the Picketts quickly rose from the armchairs
and retreated across the room. Skeen said, “Get out of here, you killjoys! How
dare you come to my office to insult and threaten me?” He moved closer to Mr.
Pickett and addressed him, emphasizing his words with a finger that tapped the
man’s nose every other word. “What you and you lecherous, spiritually arid
corpses want to do is ban what you can’t have and what no woman would ever
offer you, even for a price!”
Skeen heard a single hoot of laughter from the front office.
Mr. Pickett’s face grew scarlet. Mrs. Pickett sputtered some inarticulate
sound and raised her umbrella to strike Skeen.
Skeen easily yanked it out of her hands and broke it in half across his
knee. “You could be charged with a variety of assaults, but I’ll let them pass.
I ought to wrap this around your neck!” He handed the broken umbrella back to
the woman. The woman stood gaping at it stupidly. Something like a pained “Oh!”
escaped from her open mouth.
Mr. Pickett was now livid. He stepped up to Skeen and slapped him across
the face. “How dare you insult my
wife?!?”

“You and she are ripe for insults, sir.” Skeen drew an arm back and gave
him a round-house, open-palm slap. If he’d closed his fingers, it would have
been a fist. The man staggered back, lost his balance, and fell to the floor. A
little blood trickled from a corner of the man’s mouth. Pickett put a finger to
his lips and gasped in astonishment when he saw the blood.
Skeen said, “And you could be
charged, as well, Mr. Pickett, for assaulting me in my own office! Here, let me
help you up!” He jerked the man to his feet, spun him around, and then yelled
out to Lucy, “Lucy! Open the front door and stand aside!”
But Lucy Wentz, startled by the loud commotion in her employer’s office,
was standing there, undecided whether to be worried or amused. She rushed to
the front office and held the door open.
Skeen grabbed the belt in the back of Mr. Pickett’s pants and the back of
his shirt collar and marched him out of his office and into the hallway. He
shoved the man outside. “Don’t ever come back!”
Mrs. Pickett followed her husband out the door, still holding the broken
umbrella and looking stunned.
Skeen slammed the door on them, then ran back and retrieved the man’s
derby. He opened the door again and tossed the hat out. It sailed over the
couple’s heads and fell in front of one of the elevators far down the hall.
“Here’s your hat! What’s your hurry?
§

© 2016 Edward Cline

The Walking Dead: An Obituary

Who or
what is “Negan”?

I
answered that question in two columns about the zombie “epic” of The Walking Dead.  Now, with the much anticipated finale
of Season Six
of the series having come and gone, along with the much expected
debut of Negan, purported super villain of the series, it’s time for me to pack
my bags and leave the Walking Dead building.
Negan was
welcomed by uncounted fans of the series. He was true to the malevolent comic
book series written by Robert
Kirkman
.
This is
absolutely the last time I discuss the character or the TV series here.
Negan is a vile, evil character
who debuted in April at the end of Season Six of The
Walking Dead.
Negan is a brutal tyrant who lords over an enclave of plague
survivors and likes to smash victims’ heads with a baseball bat sheathed in
barbed wire. He has a policy of extortion that requires other, productive
enclaves to give him half of what they have in exchange for his not raiding,
raping, enslaving, and killing their inhabitants and trashing their
communities.
Or
perhaps he’ll raid and pillage a productive enclave just for the hell of it.

I will
say at the beginning here that the whole “Dead” series is grotesque. I watched
it for lack of anything else to watch on TV, just as I have watched Dexter
and a few other series about people obsessed with the dead. The Walking Dead had some interesting
conflicts. How should one conduct oneself when society has collapsed into
anarchy and about ninety percent of the population has succumbed to some
zombie-causing plague? What few redeeming elements in it have been diminished
if not altogether abandoned. Two of the principal heroes, Carol Peletier and
Daryl Dixon, played respectively by Melissa McBride and Norman Reedus, have
been sidelined in favor of introducing not only Negan, but his nihilism.
I
commented on an April 4th Forbes Magazine article on the series, “”The
Walking Dead’ Finale Ruined
Negan’s Debut With Its Worst Cliffhanger to
Date”:
For
me, the appeal of the show is not “surviving,” but that in today’s
deteriorating culture, it is one of the few that depicts men and women fighting
for their values.  The show has been inconsistent
in that respect, but the main characters for me have been Daryl and Carol (I
call her my pin-up girl). We’ve seen Daryl grow from a loud mouthed redneck
prone to anger and fighting, to a quietly determined individual who can be
sensitive and caring at the right moments, but not in any maudlin, saccharine
sense. Carol grew from a mousy homebody and dependent on others, to
aggressively self-assertive and independent of mind and values. Love her
character.
But
the introduction of Negan, regardless of the folly of the cliffhanger, was so
overwhelmingly nihilist that I think that will be the tone of Season Seven. I
don’t need that. There’s not a dime’s worth of difference between Negan and any
ISIS beheaders or any other Islamist killer (remember how concert goers in
Paris were tortured before they were killed, their bleeding bodies dragged
around the concert floor). I can get real- life Negans in this real world. I
don’t need to see it in fiction and the main killer being the focus of the
series, practically celebrated by TWD fans. I doubt I will watch much or
anything of Season Seven. The show is over for me.
Nihilism
won. The living zombies won. The animated “dead souls” won. The bloodthirsty Negan
fans will get their pounds of flesh. The clueless directors and writers will
make tons of money by officiating over the death of a series. Much like Muslims
officiate over the slaughter of an animal by slitting its throat and letting it
bleed to death. It’s the halal way.
It’s the Scott
Gimple
way. Don’t outright kill it. Let it die in agony, to please the
bizarre tastes of fans and others.

And now
Carol is shown questioning the moral code that has allowed her to survive and
flourish. Rick Grimes, leader of the group of which Carol has been a member
from the beginning, said recently about Carol: “I’m proud of her….She’s a force
of nature.”
She is
tired of having to kill to protect her values and those who are close to her.
So she is distancing herself from her values and her friends in order not to
kill.
What
Paul Tassi, author of the Forbes article, 
and legions of The Walking Dead fans are exercised about is that the
finale was a cliffhanger, and not the
resolution they were hoping for, which was seeing which character would have
his brains splattered by a baseball bat sheathed in barbed wire.
One
must ask oneself: What are their priorities? Seeing heroes win battles over
creeping demons or seeing heroes get turned into human Jell-O? As they are in
the last scenes of the finale.
My anonymous
correspondent wrote:
Negan and the Savior gang have pretty much
given me the terminal creeps as well. That such nihilism and malevolence are
being portrayed as “cool” and are somehow supposed to mirror Rick and
our Alexandria group is very ominous. If the people behind the series
seemed competent of mounting a individualistic rebuttal of that there might
still be something to hope for, but I don’t really see any signs of it. I’ll
keep my ear to the spoiler sites ground for the summer and see if there
are any hopeful signs, but as of now it does not look good….

 
They’re
upset about the “cliffhanger”? We’re introduced to a monster like
Negan who beats in the skull of one of the series’ heroes, and the fans are
miffed about the damn cliffhanger? The whole series is standing at the
edge of destroying everything that made it worth watching, and they’re running
on about the cliffhanger…?

And I’m sure that, if asked, the directors and writers of TWD would jump all
over each other to be the first to protest the “Islamophobia” of
Negan and the Saviors being equated with ISIS….
About the heroes of
The Walking Dead, my anonymous correspondent said:

They
were our surrogate fighters against the Islamic zombies, and now they are being
treated like the Muslim Brotherhood is writing the story lines. I wish they
could come back from this, but it doesn’t look good….
Well, guess who is
styling himself as the head of “The New World Order”. (I can just
imagine this monster as a fellow traveler of resurgent Islam or the
equivalent.) And yes it is very disturbing that so many fans “love”
Negan because he is teeth-grindingly obnoxious. Also,
Kirkman who
created the comic series was on
Talking
Dead and it is obvious they are trying to draw a moral equivalency between the
Saviors and Rick’s group, ignoring the fact that the former are aggressors,
extortionists, enslavers, sadists, and murderers for gain. So that approach may
be too revolting to take through the next season. 


And that is all I
have left to say about The Walking Dead.
I cannot bear to write another obituary.

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