Jeremy Corbyn (and Others) aren’t anti-war. They’re just anti-West

Jeremy Corbyn

Jeremy Corbyn (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This is from The Spectator (UK), and it’s about Jeremy Corbyn (the head of the Labor party). I think the author, Nick Cohen, is precisely on point. But I don’t think Corbyn is the only one. I would posit that anyone taking that position, and that includes all of the Democratic candidates for President and Obama as well, is in the same place.

To me, at least, it disqualifies all of them from leading our governments, a leader should have the well-being of the led as his first priority, and these people obviously do not.

Before the bodies in Paris’s restaurants were cold, Jeremy Corbyn’s Stop the War Coalition knew who the real villains were — and they were not the Islamists who massacred civilians. ‘Paris reaps whirlwind of western support for extremist violence in Middle East’ ran a headline on its site. The article went on to say that the consequence of the West’s ‘decades-long, bipartisan cultivation of religious extremism will certainly be more bloodshed, more repression and more violent intervention’.

This flawless example of what I once called the ‘kill us, we deserve it’ school of political analysis takes us to the heart of Corbyn’s beliefs. Even his opponents have yet to appreciate the malign double standards of the new Labour party, though they ought to be clear for all to see by now.

Whatever its protestations, Corbyn’s far left is not anti-war. Pacifism may not be a moral position in all circumstances but, in my view at least, it remains an honourable belief, rooted in Christian teaching. Corbyn does not share it. He does not oppose violence wherever it comes from, as the BBC’s political editor claimed this week. When anti-western regimes and movements go to war, his language turns slippery. Corbyn never quite has the guts to support the violence of others, but he excuses it like a gangster’s lawyer trying to get a crime boss off on a technicality.

He defended the Russian invasion of Ukraine by saying the West had provoked the Kremlin. His spin-doctor, Seumas Milne of the Guardian, the nearest thing you can find to a Stalinist in the 21st century, joined the leaders of Europe’s far-right parties at Putin’s propaganda summits. Meanwhile Corbyn and John McDonnell have defended the IRA, Hezbollah and Hamas. Like many on the far left (and right), they are pro-Assad. So committed to Syrian Ba’athism are Stop the War that they tried to stop Syrian refugees from Assad’s terror speaking at their meetings.

Source: Jeremy Corbyn isn’t anti-war. He’s just anti-West » The Spectator

But let’s simplify it a bit. Here’s Bill Whittle o do exactly that.


As Kipling said:

When the Cambrian measures were forming, They promised perpetual peace.
They swore, if we gave them our weapons, that the wars of the tribes would cease.
But when we disarmed They sold us and delivered us bound to our foe,
And the Gods of the Copybook Headings said: “Stick to the Devil you know.”

On the first Feminian Sandstones we were promised the Fuller Life
(Which started by loving our neighbour and ended by loving his wife)
Till our women had no more children and the men lost reason and faith,
And the Gods of the Copybook Headings said: “The Wages of Sin is Death.”

Conservatism’s Essential Element Is Experience

This is really well thought through, and it highlights something that is important. Conservatism, especially the American kind, is based on doing things that work. It is a supremely practical matter, informed by history, which is perhaps why the progressives do their best to pervert and suppress history itself.

I’m going to extract the main points, but their justification and the reasoning is in the linked article

Ultimately, if one is to understand conservatism, one must begin with its essential element: not the mind, the heart, nor the soul, but experience.

 Yet, also unlike so many of its competitors in the world of political ideas, American conservatism remains a philosophy, not an ideology—a way of looking at the world and making decisions in it, rather than a rigid set of prescriptive commands. While American conservatism draws from a variety of sources, it is ultimately about drawing on the wisdom of the human experience of the largest possible number of people over the longest possible period of time.

In many ways, that informs not only our politics, but how we do our jobs, our lifestyle, 9our religious beliefs (if any), everything we believe and do, in fact.

The Mind

Some argue that the core of conservatism is the intellect, the use of reason. These tend, by and large, to be the economic conservatives, doing constant battle with the Left’s efforts to repeal the laws of economic reality in the name of “equality” or “fairness.” Or the legal conservatives, struggling to hold the line for the consistent application of the rule of law in the face of appeals to “progress,” “empathy,” or a “living Constitution.” (The economic-analysis-of-law movement sits neatly at the intersection of both). Or, at times, the national security hawks, arguing for more cold-eyed realism and fewer appeals to the self-abnegating moral vanities of the moment.

Reason is critically important, but reason alone will indeed lead one far astray, as can be seen from many examples in the world around us.

The Heart

The failings of intellectuals give rise to the opposite argument: that the weakness of liberal-progressivism, which conservatives must remedy, is precisely that it is a sterile intellectual creed, reducing man to his wants and his biological imperatives and neglecting what really animates the human animal: pride, anger, fear, and love of family and country and all that is dear and familiar.

[…] Students of patriotism know that men will fight for their homes in ways that they would never fight for international abstractions. Students of culture will tell you that all the studies and programs in the world are no substitute for what a man will do for his family if government stops trying to substitute itself for his role. Critics of abortion will tell you that the cold utilitarianism of the “pro-choice” movement and its clinical approach to the most powerful emotional force known to humanity—a mother’s love for her child—leaves women who make that fatal choice with an emotional wound they may never entirely salve. Critics of big government argue that central planning and the rule of experts is doomed to grief because it passes the point where a man is willing to be nagged.

You know all this instinctively, you will fight much harder to defend your family than for much of anything else, but most of us also know that this can lead us even farther astray than overreliance on reason.

The Soul

A further school of thought is that the core dividing line between conservatives and liberals is faith. Mind and heart alike may be powerful tools, but they can only be properly guided by an informed conscience, which is a gift from God.

For me, this is simply a given, although some others see it differently


Reason, emotion, and faith are all important. But the crucial and distinctive element of conservatism is experience. There’s a reason why people in general tend to grow more conservative as they age: partly because they have more responsibilities and pay more taxes, yes, but also because they have seen more of life. That process is only a microcosm of the broader conservative belief in tradition: not tradition as nostalgia or fear of the unknown, but rather tradition as the proving ground of human experience, the ultimate laboratory of humanity. Experience, as the saying goes, is the school of mankind, and he will learn at no other.

Translating Experience Into Policy

The conservative preference for reliance on life experience manifests itself, procedurally, in four major ways: a preference for democracy and the rule of written law over rule by judges and other “experts”; a preference for free markets over centralized planning; a preference for federalism and deliberative democracy over one-size-fits-all centralized government, direct democracy and pure majoritarianism; and respect for tradition in all things.

In many ways, it comes down to, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it

When coupled with the separation of powers, democratic governments are also, whatever their periodic failings in this regard, less likely to make dramatic changes generally and specifically less apt to toss away long-recognized rights of the citizen and long-established forms of common sense. As George Orwell wrote in explaining the deficiency of government by so-called experts:

The immediate cause of the German defeat was the unheard-of folly of attacking the U.S.S.R. while Britain was still undefeated and America was manifestly getting ready to fight. Mistakes of this magnitude can only be made, or at any rate they are most likely to be made, in countries where public opinion has no power. So long as the common man can get a hearing, such elementary rules as not fighting all your enemies simultaneously are less likely to be violated.

In the matter of reforming things, as distinct from deforming them, there is one plain and simple principle; a principle which will probably be called a paradox. There exists in such a case a certain institution or law; let us say, for the sake of simplicity, a fence or gate erected across a road. The more modern type of reformer goes gaily up to it and says, ‘I don’t see the use of this; let us clear it away.’ To which the more intelligent type of reformer will do well to answer: ‘If you don’t see the use of it, I certainly won’t let you clear it away. Go away and think. Then, when you can come back and tell me that you do see the use of it, I may allow you to destroy it.’ […]

At the end of the day, what makes conservatism both distinct and viable is not the castles it builds in the air, but the roots that hold it deep in the ground. The essential element of conservatism is that by learning from experience and tradition, it reflects the world as it really is.

Source: Conservatism’s Essential Element Is Experience

I agree

The Alarming Signposts that this Could Be a Crazy Year

This is interesting, and amongst all the theories floating around describing events, it makes as much sense as anything else. Does that make it true? Nope, neither does it make it false. Like global warming, global cooling, climate change, it’s a theory, although this one doesn’t have several trillion dollars of rent seeking money attached. It’s a hypothesis, neither proved nor disproved. We shall see.

I was fifteen, it was 1968, and seeking refuge from adolescence and the turmoil of the times, I often curled up with science fiction. When your world spins apart, you can find some respite in alternate worlds. And so I did – until one story wrenched me back to the chaotic present.

It was “The Year of the Jackpot,” in which Robert A. Heinlein stunningly foresaw it all.

The story had been published in 1952, but it conjured up the annus mirabilis/horribilis that I could see flashing before me every day: nudity in public, nudity in the churches, transvestites, draft-dodgers, cigar-smoking feminists, bishops promoting sex education, ludicrous lawsuits, a “startling rise in dissident evangelical cults,” and the Alabama state legislature proposing to abolish physics (not the teaching of physics, no, they wanted to repeal the laws of nuclear physics). Heinlein even predicted that weird antiwar protesters would be arrested in Chicago and disrupt their subsequent trial. In the story, a bespectacled statistician (they always wear glasses) discovers that all varieties of human behavior move in waves, and now (as he plots on graphs) all the waves are cresting at once. “It’s as clear as a bank statement,” he warns. “This year the human race is letting down its hair, flipping its lip with a finger, and saying, ‘Wubba, wubba, wubba.”‘

Source: History News Network | The Alarming Signposts that this Could Be a Crazy Year

Or as some of us might have said back in 1968, ‘Beaucoup dinky dau, redux’. I bet some of my readers recognize that!

P.J O’Rourke has a new book out, it’s called Thrown Under the Omnibus, and it’s an anthology of his earlier works, a greatest hits album, as it were. So if you have his books, it may be a bit repetitive, but it’s a great introduction to the author who has been compared to S.J. Perlman on acid as well as H.L. Mencken, that’s some heady company. Here’s a few quotes:

On the fall of the Berlin Wall:

They may have had the soldiers and the warheads and the fine-sounding ideology that suckered the college students and nitwit Third Worlders, but we had all the fun . . . in the end we beat them with Levi’s 501 jeans. Seventy years of communist indoctrination and propaganda was drowned out by a three-ounce Sony Walkman. A huge totalitarian system with all its tanks and guns, gulag camps, and secret police has been brought to its knees because nobody wants to wear Bulgarian shoes.

On the differences between the parties:

Democrats are in favor of higher taxes to pay for greater spending, while Republicans are in favor of greater spending, for which the taxpayers will pay.

Why conservatives being called Nazis never bothered him:

I don’t let it bother me for one simple reason. No one has ever had a fantasy about being tied to a bed and sexually ravished by someone dressed as a liberal.

Not to mention this:

It is true that Republicans are squares, but it’s the squares who know how to fly the bombers, launch the missiles, and fire the M-16s. Democrats would still be fumbling with the federally mandated trigger locks.

I’ve been reading, and laughing with, O’Rourke since he was a liberal, and I just bought this book, I like greatest hits albums, often they are the concentrated essence of what we loved.

Building on Sand

430Over at AATW today, Geoffrey Sales is talking about how we owe it to ourselves to attempt to live up to God’s standards, even if we don’t often (or ever, for that matter) meet them. We owe it to ourselves to try. This is the paramount curse of modernism, post-modernism, progressivism, and what we currently call liberalism, its willingness to abrogate all standards for the cheap (very cheap, indeed) thrill of feeling good about ourselves. What’s to feel good about doing any damned thing you want to at the moment? Here is what happens when we abandon that quest.

Way back in the day, and we’re talking centuries, Europe was a hotbed for the expansion of Christian ideas and philosophies. They were the foundations of European culture, government, and way of life. […]

The greatest empire the world had ever known, the British Empire, was built upon that foundation which stemmed back to the earliest days of Christendom. France, Spain, even Germany built legacies on top of the essential pillars of the faith.

Did they lose their way at times? Absolutely. But those foundations were there. They were fighting for something greater than people – they were fighting for identity, for country, for God, and for king. But, beginning late in the 20th century, those ideas were being tossed aside in favor of humanism.

Europe is dying because it has become morally incompetent. It isn’t that Europe stands for nothing. It’s that it stands for shallow things, shallowly. Europeans believe in human rights, tolerance, openness, peace, progress, the environment, pleasure. These beliefs are all very nice, but they are also secondary.

What Europeans no longer believe in are the things from which their beliefs spring: Judaism and Christianity; liberalism and the Enlightenment; martial pride and capability; capitalism and wealth. Still less do they believe in fighting or sacrificing or paying or even arguing for these things. Having ignored and undermined their own foundations, they wonder why their house is coming apart.

It is commendable that the West is trying to be more open, to be more understanding of the values of outsiders, but it has lost the capacity for self-love,” a prominent German theologian noted about a decade ago. “All that it sees in its own history is the despicable and the destructive; it is no longer able to perceive what is great and pure. What Europe needs is a new self-acceptance, a self acceptance that is critical and humble, if it truly wishes to survive.”

That’s Joseph Ratzinger, better known as Benedict XVI.

Ultimately, what makes Europe’s downfall so imminent is that it does not seem to recognize, as the Left here in America doesn’t, that its their own policies within this modern era that are killing them.

Source: Europe’s much-needed return to religious roots | RedState

I have little to add, other than that I agree. It’s not a new thesis, though.

24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:

25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.

26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:

27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.

Matthew 7:24-27 King James Version (KJV)

And yet, and yet… Most of you know that Jessica and I often triggered posts in each other. I recapped one of those instances here, and I think it bears on the situation the post posits.

The image of the once and future king is a powerful one, and part of the Arthurian legend. If there was an Arthur, he was most likely to have been one of the last of the Romans, using Roman cavalry tactics to slow down the advance of the Saxons, and like so many of his kind, he retreated into the fastnesses of Wales where the remnants of the Britons kept their faith and their guard for the long years when their country was the prey of invaders. Arthur, real or not, represented the need to believe that the old civilisation had not gone down without a fight, and that all it had represented could rise again.

The Once and Future King. That is indeed a powerful image for all of us cousins, implying as it does that in the end all will be set right, and it also speaks to us as Christians as we remember that our murdered and Risen King will return in Glory. As Dame Julian said, “All will be well, and all manner of things will be well.

Jess’ word in italics, mine not. Perhaps we should end with what Jess said to end the post that one is drawn from:

Chesterton, in the most stirring of his poems, ‘The Ballad of the White Horse’ catches the spirit of that time so well, and remind us to have courage and not to despair. He has Our Blessed Lady tell the fugitive and fearful Alfred:

“I tell you naught for your comfort,
Yea, naught for your desire,
Save that the sky grows darker yet
And the sea rises higher.

“Night shall be thrice night over you,
And heaven an iron cope.
Do you have joy without a cause,
Yea, faith without a hope?”

‘Faith without a hope’? Not whilst Mary’s Son calls us to Him.

Manifest Destiny in the New Wild West :: SteynOnline

At the new afternoon show at the High Chapparal theme park in Vegby Bolsgård, four Syrian orphans (left) wait in line as the Swedish Deputy Minister of Refugee Resettlement (right) moseys toward them with their first welfare check

Time for some common sense, from Mark Steyn:

I was in Malmö, Sweden, a month ago, and struck by tensions in the social fabric caused by the remorseless tide of “refugees” from “Syria”. Yesterday Rossleigh from the “Australian Independent Media Network” suggested that it was all confusion on my part and the bearded Muslims were, in fact, “hipsters”. Whether or not they’re hipsters, they’re now going to be the world’s least lonesome cowpokes.

The High Chaparral, presumably named after the Sixties telly show, is a Wild West theme park in southern Sweden (see right). And, because everywhere else in the country is filled up with as many Muslims as the fire code allows, the chaps at the Chaparral are now opening their swinging saloon doors to the new settlers and their covered wagons – whoops, covered wives. My old chums at the Telegraph report:

Few fleeing the civil war in Syria would have imagined they would end up spending the winter in a Wild West theme park complete with potted cacti, mock 19th century furniture, and cowboy murals.

But Sweden’s Migration Agency is now so desperate for rooms in which to house this autumn’s unexpected surge in refugees that it has signed a deal with High Chaparral, an amusement park in rural southern Sweden, to house 400 people.

Emil Erlandsson, the park’s manager and co-owner, said that the park had initially refused to lease out its accomodation for fear of damaging its brand.

“They have asked us five times and I have constantly turned them down,” he said. “But when we saw on the TV that refugees are now supposed to live in tents in Malmo, we took a decision that we should help.”

At the High Chaparral the only people living in tents are the Canadian Indians Mr Erlandsson uses as extras. Instead, the “refugees” will have a grand old time:

Source: Manifest Destiny in the New Wild West :: SteynOnline

Look it’s becoming abundantly clear that these aren’t political refugees, from Syria, or anyplace else, they are at best, economic refugees, and given that they have no marketable skills, at all, they are simply welfare shopping. The obvious thing is that Sweden and Germany, especially, besides destroying their own native culture are killing the goose that laid the golden eggs. Sultan Knish has more here.

There are likely a lot of reasons, not excluding the guilt many German feel/felt for Nazi-ism, and the bleeding that Europe took of its best men in the wars of the twentieth century, and seventy-five years of outsourcing their defense to the United States-kvetching all the while.

But the past is in some sense, prologue, and what we are watching now, is the dissolution of Europe, into if not the caliphate, into at least a Muslim majority continent. I rather doubt it is fixable, for a very simple reason:

Nothing cannot stand against anything.

If Europe does not grow a pair, and soon, it is irretrievably lost. Better visit soon before the cathedrals are all mosques.



signing-constitutionI’m just going to give you a taste of this. The article is fairly long, it’s also of a piece, and not susceptible of abstracting. (At least by me!)

The GOP needs more than cosmetic surgery. It’s either showing signs of great health or is in crisis, or perhaps a little of both. The party controls both houses of Congress and is hitting historic highs in governorships and state legislatures. An array of bright, young, plausible Republican Presidents campaigns for the Oval Office—a far cry. Read More

It’s important to note that the party would be in much worse shape than it otherwise would be  without the Tea Party. And that’s even taking into account that the disgruntled insurgents have cost the GOP some winnable elections, most notably by blocking the Senate candidacy of former Representative and Governor Michael Castle in Delaware. (GOP insiders also conveniently blame non-Tea Party losses on the Tea Party—Todd Aiken, for example, was not a Tea Party guy.) Establishment figures don’t have the greatest record, otherwise we would have Senator Tommy Thompson, and a re-elected Connie Mack and George Allen.

Meanwhile, as Ben Domenech notes, the Tea Party has, in fact, begun to redirect the GOP, even if most Tea Party people express frustration at not accomplishing more. (Granted, his comments on the budget deal might qualify that judgment.) The most recent debate might indicate that a majority of Republicans are starting to understand that our elite media are, as Glenn Reynolds says, “Democratic operatives with bylines,” and Republicans should treat them as such.

Source: RINO-plasty – Online Library of Law & Liberty

That great quote from James Madison is also in there. You know: this one

This disproportionate increase of prerogative and patronage must, evidently . . . [foster] the transformation of the republican system of the United States into a monarchy,  . . .whether it would be into a mixed or an absolute monarchy might depend on too many contingencies to admit of any certain foresight.

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