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31 May 2014

Kippers and Curtains

Nigel Farage, saying the unsayable

By Mark Steyn

As I was saying:

Ukip — like Nigel Farage's bar bill at ten in the evening — will climb a lot higher yet.

And so it did. Sunday's UK election results were the first since 1910 in which a party other than Conservative or Labour came out on top in a national vote. That's to say, Nigel Farage did something nobody from outside the two-party system has done in over a century: he won.

If you don't remember that December 1910 election, Asquith's Liberals came first - but with just one seat more than the Tories, so they were forced to govern with the support of John Redmond's Irish nationalists.

In other words, it was another world. The old British Liberal Party no longer really exists, merged a generation ago into the modishly opportunist Europhiliac "Liberal Democrats". And nor does Redmond's Irish Parliamentary Party, which survived in Ulster as the rump Nationalist Party until the late Seventies, when it merged with some even rumpier rump and became the Irish Independence Party, which sank to all but undetectable levels in the Eighties, although for all I know it may still run the occasional candidate for council seats in Fermanagh.

As I said, another world - in part because that December 1910 election proved consequential: as the price of his support, Redmond extracted a third Home Rule bill from the Liberals, and the rest is misty shamrock-hued history.

This time, unlike 1910, Britons were not electing a government, but merely members of the European Parliament. The European Parliament isn't really a parliament, in the sense that it does not have "legislative initiative", which is a polite why of saying these guys have no say over anything that matters. And, aside from not being a parliament, there isn't any "Europe". The more the Eurocrats insist that their subjects are voting as "European citizens", the more the horizons shrivel: in the Parliament of Euro-Man, the French vote for French nationalists, Hungarians for Hungarian nationalists, Greeks for Greek nationalists, etc. There is no European polity, which is why there should be no European parliament.

My old boss Boris Johnson, now the Mayor of London and eying Downing Street next, analyzed the vote thus:

To a greater or lesser extent, the story of this Euro-election has been the rise of the minor parties – some of them bizarre, some of them downright potty, but all of them united by a visceral dislike of the EU bureaucracy: its arrogance, its remoteness, its expense, its endless condescension and its manic and messianic belief in its right to legislate for all 500 million people in the EU.

There is a kind of peasants' revolt going on, a jacquerie. From Dublin to Lublin, from Portugal to Pomerania, the pitchfork-wielding populists are converging on the Breydel building in Brussels – drunk on local hooch and chanting nationalist slogans and preparing to give the federalist machinery a good old kicking with their authentically folkloric clogs.

Lovely stuff, but I don't think it's quite right. Yes, Ukip voters hate the EU bureaucracy, but the only reason the EU is in a position to put the screws to them is because the British political class gave away British sovereignty to Brussels. And Ukip wants it back. So, in that sense, it's not so very different from 1910. Like John Redmond and his Irish caucus, Nigel Farage leads a nationalist party and, like Redmond with Asquith, he'd be happy to enter into an arrangement with the Prime Minister in exchange for a Home Rule bill.

But none of the Westminster parties is serious about Home Rule for Britain - which is to say withdrawal from the EU, or at any rate the kind of meaningful clawback that would dramatically reduce Brussels' jurisdiction over the United Kingdom. Dear old Boris doesn't seem to get that everything he says about the EU bureaucracy - "its arrogance, its remoteness, its expense, its endless condescension" - is exactly how Farage's voters feel about the Conservative-Liberal-Labour-Media Permanent Political Class in London. For the most recent examples of arrogance, remoteness and condescension, see the coverage of Ukip throughout this election campaign.

Is that going to change? On Friday, David Cameron was insisting that he shared voters' frustration with David Cameron. If he were Obama, Cameron would say that no one is madder than Cameron at all the stuff this Cameron guy's been pulling. But by Monday the Prime Minister had recovered:

David Cameron has attacked Nigel Farage for claiming to be a "normal bloke down the pub" when he is in reality a "consummate politician" who is "supremely tactical".

This is a relatively sophisticated line of attack from Cameron, who had previously dismissed Ukip as a bunch of "fruitcakes, loonies and closet racists". Evidently, it has dawned on him that what marks a chap as an obvious "fruitcake" to all the smart people in "the Westminster village" strikes less perceptive fellows out there in the hinterlands as a "normal bloke".

Let's stipulate that nobody who prospers among the creeps and misfits who infest politics in an advanced western democracy these days can be that much of a "normal bloke". That said, on the one occasion I've met Farage, he struck me as more normal than most, and, even if he isn't a "normal bloke", he gives a much more convincing impression of one than Cameron does. As I wrote last year:

After Ukip cost the Tories control of Oxfordshire County Council, that body's longtime leader offered some advice to the Prime Minister: "You have to work out how to be one of us without affectation." Good idea; maybe we can focus-group it.

As for the "down the pub" boozing and puffing, if that's all a put-on, Farage is in seriously deep cover. But there too the Oxfordshire Tory chappie made a good point about him:

"He is unafraid to be filmed with a pint of beer and a cigarette in his hand when all of our media training tells us to eschew either image."

The "normal bloke" terrain was consciously abandoned by the tripartisan consultant class from which Cameron emerged. But it's more than just a few stylistic tics like 14 pints every photo-op. As an example of normal blokiness, consider Farage's reaction when, late in the campaign, a Ukip candidate was revealed to have once described homosexuality as "abnormal". The Ukipper in question, Roger Helmer, is 70, and Farage responded to the ensuing "controversy" by saying that "if we asked the 70s and over in this country how they felt about it [homosexuality], most of them still feel uncomfortable."

That's a very normal-blokey reaction: He's not saying he feels like that, he's just saying Helmer grew up at a time when homosexuality was illegal in Britain, and in a fast-moving world you can't expect everyone to stay au courant, and it's no big deal, and certainly no reason to hound the chap from public life. Farage's response was not just decent and humane, but, indeed, genuinely "diverse" and "tolerant". Can you ever in your life imagine Cameron or Clegg or Milliband saying such a thing? Or would they be standing there po-faced droning on all finger-waggingly about how such bigotry has no place in our politics today? And isn't that sort of thing part of the reason why not only do they not sound like "normal blokes down the pub" but, in fact, come over as deeply weird blokes? A day or two before the election, Cameron was huffin' and a-puffin' that Britain had had enough of the "appalling" Ukip. It must be awfully tiring going around being fakily indignant about piffle all day long.

But perhaps not, if you never address anything of actual importance to voters.

I see I've quoted my year-old Farage profile a couple of times already, so I might as well make a feature of it. I've no reason to believe that anyone who matters in the three "mainstream" parties or even my old colleagues in Fleet Street ever read the piece, which is their loss, because they (the politico-media class) might not have waged this election so ineptly. For example, Steyn in 2013:

Farage is too funny to make a convincing fascist, but, with the great unwashed pounding on the fence of their gated community, the Westminster village have redoubled their efforts. To be sure, as with any fledgling party whose candidate-selection process lacks the ruthless filtering of the Big Three, Ukip's members are somewhat variable: One recently expressed an antipathy toward women in trousers, another was glimpsed in a cell-phone photograph either doing a Nazi salute (albeit sitting down and with his left hand) or reaching out to seize the phone in mid-snap. Considering the oppo research launched against Ukip by all three major parties plus the media, these are thin pickings.

And, as the case of Mr Helmer demonstrated, they've remained thin - and entirely ineffective. So why not stop the labeling? Yes, this or that candidate will once in a while say something capable of being presented as "racist" or "transphobic" if you all work yourselves up to get sufficiently "appalled" over it, but it's never going to be enough. You can't keep calling these guys "fringe" "extremists" when they get more votes than you. So instead of shrieking about "fruitcakes" and "loonies" why not try engaging on the issues? Me last year again:

The Tories in particular might be better off thinking seriously about Ukip's appeal: If you reckon things are grand just as they are, having a choice between three indistinguishable "social democrat" parties — as Farage calls Labour, Liberal, and Conservative — is fine. If you don't think things are grand, then it seems increasingly strange and, indeed, unhealthy that not one of the three "mainstream" parties is prepared to support policies that command the support of half the electorate (EU withdrawal) and significantly more than half (serious border enforcement). Underneath the contempt for UKIP lies a careless assumption by the antiseptic metropolitan elite that their condescension is universally shared...

Talking to themselves across the dinner tables of Highgate and Holland Park, the ConLibLabMedia United Front gave themselves a bad case of Pauline Kael Syndrome (the New Yorker critic supposedly bewildered by Nixon's victory because no one she knew had voted for him). There is a danger here for the Labour Party, too, which in some ways had a worse night than the Tories. Me from a year ago:

The Britain to which Ukip speaks resonates beyond the 19th hole. It was not just that the party won an unprecedented number of seats in May's elections, but that they achieved more second-place finishes than anybody else. Beyond the leafy suburbs and stockbroker counties, in parts of Britain where the traditional working class has been hung out to dry by Labour in pursuit of more fashionable demographics, Ukip has significant appeal.

And so it proved. The Tory vote fell by 3.8 per cent, but the Ukip vote went up by 11 per cent. Which means they took votes from the other parties, too. Labour likes the idea of Ukip as a right-wing vote-splitter, but once it starts eating into their own base all bets are off. And last week Ukip proved it could do that just enough to make a difference.

The Westminster system is implicitly designed for two players: one to be the Government, one to be the Loyal Opposition. Until the 20th century, other than the various transient Irish Home Rule parties, there were literally only two parties. In that 1910 election, a fledgling Labour came fourth. Within a decade and a half, they'd displaced the Liberals as the alternative to the Tories, and the Libs never again held power until Cameron so bungled the last election that he was forced to form a coalition with them. It's obviously premature to suggest that Ukip will replace the Conservative Party, but I'd say we're now in for an era of four-party politics at Westminster.

And the reason for that is that (per Boris) in their "arrogance", "remoteness" and "endless condescension" the other three parties all sound the same.

So in a way it's still a two-party system.

Related Reading:

10 Tens Other Politicians Should Refrain From Saying In The Aftermath of Farage & Ukip's Triumphant

UKIP Victory Sends A Message To EU's Elites About Failure Of Big Government

Are We All Racists Now?

UKIP’s Tremor

After The Earthquake: What Will The People Do Next When They Realise Their Votes Concerning The EU Just Don't Matter?


The people of Britain have spoken and our political life will now have to be conducted on quite different terms, right? Wrong. Here’s another statement that seems to have passed for a truism over the past week which is equally wrong: large swathes of the populations of Europe have shouted a warning to their governments, and thus shaken the confidence of the whole European Union edifice. And another: national leaders in most of the major EU member states realise that they must respond to the demands of their electorates and reconsider the basic principle of ever-closer union. 

When I say that all of these statements are false, I do not mean to detract from the thunderous importance of recent electoral events. I am not one of those delusional commentators who believe (or claim to believe) that nothing much of any significance has happened and that all this excitement is just overblown media froth. On the contrary, my reason for insisting that none of the things that are assumed to be self-evidently true about the post-elections world will actually prove correct, is that the results were too important – so devastating, so cataclysmically mind-altering that they cannot be assimilated. There is no way that the European Union – which is to say, those who run it, think entirely within its conceptual parameters, have their political and personal futures invested in it and can conceive of no reality outside of it – can come to terms with the consequences of these elections. 

The facts do not compute. They are incomprehensible. Therefore they must be dismissed as some irrational, contemptible spasm to which the masses are occasionally susceptible and which the enlightened institutions of the EU were specifically designed to over-rule. 

Here in Britain, in our own little bastion of denial, party leaders are jamming up behind one another to assure voters that they “get it”: they hear you, they understand your concerns, they are going to address your anxieties, blah-blah. So what does all this lesson-learning and self-abnegation amount to? David Cameron announces firmly that he knows the EU is seen as “too big, too bossy and too interfering”, which makes the whole thing sound like a children’s playground squabble. Is it just me or does the word “bossy” sound just a little bit patronising and trivial – especially given that what we are talking about here is the withdrawal of our right as a democratic polity to have power over own criminal justice system and our national borders? 

Ed Miliband insists that he now recognises that people’s concerns about immigration must be taken seriously. I’ll bet he does – especially as so many of the voters with the greatest concerns are likely to have been ex-Labour supporters. But what exactly does this commitment to taking people’s concerns seriously amount to? A change of Labour policy on immigration? An explicit admission that the decision by the last Labour government to permit immediate unlimited migration from the new East European accession countries – when most other member states did not – was a mistake? Not that I’ve heard. Until it translates into some meaningful new policy, this is just pious codswallop. Saying “we hear you” in a soothing voice means nothing. It just buys a bit of time – which is the real object of the game.

The Conservatives can play at this with the most confidence. So far as they are concerned, they emerged from the bloodbath with barely a scratch. All they need do is murmur a few attentive platitudes, re-affirm their promise of a renegotiation with a supposedly humbled EU, wait for the public hysteria to fade in the face of good economic news, and then face an utterly demoralised Labour party led by (ha, ha, ha) Mr Miliband.

What’s to worry? If they beat Ukip in the Newark by-election – even if their 16,000 majority is drastically cut – they will privately (and possibly even publicly if they are particularly foolish) declare the present emergency officially over. Their most urgent worry, bizarrely, is that the Lib Dems are now dead in the water, which leaves a lot of disenfranchised voters who could become a dangerously unknown quantity at the general election. (We could yet be faced with the nightmare possibility of a tiny rump of Lib Dem MPs still holding the balance in a hung parliament, if the Conservatives cannot manage a working majority.)

Yes indeed, the Tories know how to manage this “crisis”. Sit it out. Hunker down and let it blow over. I promise you that, within weeks, they will be doing and saying exactly what they had been doing and saying before The Earthquake. As will Labour, for a slightly different reason: because it simply does not have the philosophical resources to cope with this shift in reality.

So everybody in mainstream British politics – even Nick Clegg, the dead man walking – will lie low, stay calm, and hope that when summer comes, this will all be forgotten. Because the awful truth is that nobody in politics actually knows how to respond to a spontaneous demonstration of public anger any more. They have become so practised at manipulating, image-projecting and rebranding, that a full-frontal confrontation with raw democratic outrage leaves them stupefied.

But what about the EU itself? Hasn’t it been shaken in its sublime self-regard? Won’t the mass revolts of electorates across its member states force it to reassess its own size, role, power, fundamental precepts, etc, etc, thus making Mr Cameron’s mission to reform it more practicable?

Wrong again. EU institutions are transcendentally oblivious to the democratic will: they were, after all, created precisely to ensure that the serious business of government could never again be taken over by volatile popular movements of dubious provenance. One of the EU Commission’s first acts after the elections was to demand a further £1.76 billion in contributions from member states, in order to subsidise those whose problems are almost entirely attributable to EU economic policy.

The European parliament, supposedly the elected voice of the governed, is so committed to the momentum of the federalist project that even in the wake of those spectacularly anti-EU election results it nominated Jean-Claude Juncker, an arch-federalist, as president of the Commission. Has anybody learnt anything? Presumably if there was to be an honest statement of basic principle engraved over the doors of the Brussels headquarters it would say: “The people are dangerous. Don’t listen to them.”

It has become received wisdom that the reason for that massive electoral rebellion against the EU was that the people were throwing a harmless tantrum: they were just letting off steam because they knew that their votes in this election did not matter. And what do people do next when they realise that their votes don’t matter?

Pic of the Day: When Does An EnviroNazi Progressive Love An SUV? When She Can Turn It Into This...

Do Most Americans Agree With Democrats On The Issues?

I guess it is perfectly acceptable for a Progressive to drive a SUV provided she uses it as a moving billboard for every politically correct issue known to humankind.   

Why do I feel the need to send the owner a big bumper sticker of Che?

Hitler's Debt to American Progressives

The Nazis' extermination programme was carried out in the name of eugenics - but they were by no means the only advocates of racial purification. In this extract from his extraordinary new book, Edwin Black describes how Adolf Hitler's race hatred was underpinned by the work of American eugenicists.

By Edwin Black, The Guardian,  

At 4am on November 12 1915, a woman named Anna Bollinger gave birth at the German-American Hospital in Chicago. The baby was somewhat deformed and suffered from extreme intestinal and rectal abnormalities, as well as other complications. The delivering physicians awakened Dr Harry Haiselden, the hospital's chief of staff. Haiselden came in at once. He consulted with colleagues. There was great disagreement over whether the child could be saved. But Haiselden decided the baby was too afflicted and fundamentally not worth saving. It would be killed. The method: denial of treatment.

Catherine Walsh, probably a friend of Bollinger's, heard the news and sped to the hospital to help. She found the baby, who had been named Allan, alone in a bare room. Walsh pleaded with Haiselden not to kill the baby by withholding treatment. "It was not a monster - that child," Walsh later told an inquest. "It was a beautiful baby. I saw no deformities." Walsh had patted the infant lightly. Allan's eyes were open, and he waved his tiny fists at her. Begging the doctor once more, Walsh tried an appeal to his humanity. "If the poor little darling has one chance in a thousand," she pleaded, "won't you operate to save it?"

Haiselden laughed at Walsh, retorting, "I'm afraid it might get well." He was a skilled and experienced surgeon, trained by the best doctors in Chicago. He was also an ardent eugenicist. Allan Bollinger duly died. An inquest was convened a few days later. Haiselden defiantly declared, "I should have been guilty of a graver crime if I had saved this child's life. My crime would have been keeping in existence one of nature's cruellest blunders." A juror shot back, "What do you mean by that?" Haiselden responded, "Exactly that. I do not think this child would have grown up to be a mental defective. I know it."

After tempestuous proceedings, the inquest ruled: "We believe that a prompt operation would have prolonged and perhaps saved the life of the child. We find no evidence from the physical defects that the child would have become mentally or morally defective." But they also decided that Haiselden was within his professional rights to decline treatment. No law compelled him to operate on the child. He was released unpunished, and efforts by the Illinois attorney general to indict him for murder were blocked by the local prosecutor. The doctor considered his legal vindication a powerful victory for eugenics. "Eugenics? Of course it's eugenics," he told one reporter.

Haiselden became an overnight celebrity, known for his many newspaper articles, his speaking tours and outrageous diatribes. In 1917, Hollywood came calling. The film was called The Black Stork. Written by Jack Lait, a reporter on the Chicago American, it was produced in Hollywood and given a massive national distribution and promotion campaign. Haiselden played himself in a fictionalised account of a eugenically mismatched couple whom he advises not to have children because they are likely to be defective. Eventually, the woman does give birth to a defective child, whom she then allows to die. The dead child levitates into the waiting arms of Jesus Christ. It was unbridled cinematic propaganda for the eugenics movement; the film played at movie theatres around the country for more than a decade.

National publicity advertised it as a "eugenic love story". One advertisement quoted Swiss eugenicist Auguste Forel's warning: "The law of heredity winds like a red thread through the family history of every criminal, of every epileptic, eccentric and insane person. Shall we sit still ... without applying the remedy?" In 1917, a display advertisement for The Black Stork read: "Kill Defectives, Save the Nation and See 'The Black Stork'." Various methods of eugenic euthanasia - including gassing the unwanted in lethal chambers - were a part of everyday American parlance and ethical debate some two decades before Nevada approved the first such chamber for criminal executions in 1921.

As America's eugenics movement gathered pace, it inspired a host of imitators. In France, Belgium, Sweden, England and elsewhere in Europe, cliques of eugenicists did their best to introduce eugenic principles into national life; they could always point to recent precedents established in the United States.

Germany was no exception. From the turn of the century, German eugenicists formed academic and personal relationships with the American eugenics establishment, in particular with Charles Davenport, the pioneering founder of the Eugenics Record Office on Long Island, New York, which was backed by the Harriman railway fortune. A number of other charitable American bodies generously funded German race biology with hundreds of thousands of dollars, even after the depression had taken hold.

Germany had certainly developed its own body of eugenic knowledge and library of publications. Yet German readers still closely followed American eugenic accomplishments as the model: biological courts, forced sterilisation, detention for the socially inadequate, debates on euthanasia. As America's elite were describing the socially worthless and the ancestrally unfit as "bacteria," "vermin," "mongrels" and "subhuman", a superior race of Nordics was increasingly seen as the answer to the globe's eugenic problems. US laws, eugenic investigations and ideology became blueprints for Germany's rising tide of race biologists and race-based hatemongers.

One such agitator was a disgruntled corporal in the German army. In 1924, he was serving time in prison for mob action. While there, he spent his time poring over eugenic textbooks, which extensively quoted Davenport, Popenoe and other American ethnological stalwarts. And he closely followed the writings of Leon Whitney, president of the American Eugenics Society, and Madison Grant, who extolled the Nordic race and bemoaned its "corruption" by Jews, Negroes, Slavs and others who did not possess blond hair and blue eyes. The young German corporal even wrote one of them fan mail.

In The Passing of the Great Race, Grant wrote: "Mistaken regard for what are believed to be divine laws and a sentimental belief in the sanctity of human life tend to prevent both the elimination of defective infants and the sterilisation of such adults as are themselves of no value to the community. The laws of nature require the obliteration of the unfit and human life is valuable only when it is of use to the community or race."

One day in the early 1930s, Whitney visited Grant to show off a letter he had just received from Germany, written by the corporal, now out of prison and rising in the German political scene. Grant could only smile. He pulled out his own letter. It was from the same German, thanking Grant for writing The Passing of the Great Race. The fan letter called Grant's book "his Bible". The man who sent those letters was Adolf Hitler.

Hitler displayed his knowledge of American eugenics in much of his writing and conversation. In Mein Kampf, for example, he declared: "The demand that defective people be prevented from propagating equally defective offspring is a demand of clearest reason and, if systematically executed, represents the most humane act of mankind. It will spare millions of unfortunates undeserved sufferings, and consequently will lead to a rising improvement of health as a whole."

Mein Kampf also displayed a familiarity with the recently passed US National Origins Act, which called for eugenic quotas. "There is today one state in which at least weak beginnings toward a better conception [of immigration] are noticeable. Of course, it is not our model German Republic, but [the US], in which an effort is made to consult reason at least partially. By refusing immigrants on principle to elements in poor health, by simply excluding certain races from naturalisation, it professes in slow beginnings a view that is peculiar to the People's State."

Hitler proudly told his comrades how closely he followed American eugenic legislation. "Now that we know the laws of heredity," he told a fellow Nazi, "it is possible to a large extent to prevent unhealthy and severely handicapped beings from coming into the world. I have studied with interest the laws of several American states concerning prevention of reproduction by people whose progeny would, in all probability, be of no value or be injurious to the racial stock."

Nor did Hitler fail to grasp the eugenic potential of gas and the lethal chamber, a topic that was already being discussed in German eugenic circles before Mein Kampf was published. Hitler, who had himself been hospitalised for battlefield gas injuries, wrote: "If at the beginning of the war and during the war 12,000 or 15,000 of these Hebrew corrupters of the people had been held under poison gas, as happened to hundreds of thousands of our best German workers in the field, the sacrifices of millions at the front would not have been in vain. On the contrary: 12,000 scoundrels eliminated in time might have saved the lives of a million real Germans, valuable for the future."

On January 30 1933, Hitler seized power. During the 12-year Reich, he never varied from the eugenic doctrines of identification, segregation, sterilisation, euthanasia, eugenic courts and eventually mass termination in lethal chambers. During the Reich's first 10 years, eugenicists across America welcomed Hitler's plans as the logical fulfilment of their own decades of research and effort. Indeed, they were envious as Hitler rapidly began sterilising hundreds of thousands and systematically eliminating non-Aryans from German society. This included the Jews. Ten years after Virginia passed its 1924 sterilisation act, Joseph Dejarnette, superintendent of Virginia's Western State Hospital, complained in the Richmond Times-Dispatch: "The Germans are beating us at our own game."

Most of all, American raceologists were proud to have inspired the strictly eugenic state the Nazis were constructing. In those early years of the Third Reich, Hitler and his race hygienists carefully crafted eugenic legislation modelled on laws already introduced across America and upheld by the supreme court. Nazi doctors, and even Hitler himself, regularly communicated with American eugenicists from New York to California, ensuring that Germany would scrupulously follow the path blazed by the US. American eugenicists were eager to assist.

This was particularly true of California's eugenicists, who led the nation in sterilisation and provided the most scientific support for Hitler's regime. In 1934, as Germany's sterilisations were accelerating beyond 5,000 per month, the California eugenic leader and immigration activist CM Goethe was ebullient in congratulating ES Gosney of the San Diego-based Human Betterment Foundation for his impact on Hitler's work. Upon his return in 1934 from a eugenic fact-finding mission in Germany, Goethe wrote Gosney a letter of praise. The foundation was so proud of Goethe's letter that they reprinted it in their 1935 annual report.

"You will be interested to know," Goethe's letter proclaimed, "that your work has played a powerful part in shaping the opinions of the intellectuals behind Hitler in this epoch-making program. Everywhere I sensed that their opinions have been tremendously stimulated by American thought, and particularly by the work of the Human Betterment Foundation. 

"I want you, my dear friend, to carry this thought with you for the rest of your life, that you have really jolted into action a great government of 60 million people." 

Related Reading: 

Eugenics And The Nazis -- The California Connection

The Darwinian Basis for Eugenics

Progressives' Dirty, Little Secret

Sterilising the Left’s Eugenics History

'War Against the Weak--Eugenics and America's Campaign to Create a Master Race'

Progressivism, Eugenics, and the Jewish Butcher of Buchenwald

The Return of the Anti-Chinese League

"Being A Progressive Means Never Having To Admit That You Were Wrong Or Saying You're Sorry."

The Left's Lie About Fascism Will Outlive Cockroaches In A Nuclear Winter

George Bernard Shaw Favours Euthanasia

Taking Life: Humans 

Carrie Buck, 'Three Generations, No Imbeciles, But A Mandate'

How Progressives Killed Robert Goldstein Through Censorship, Police State Tactics, Unconstitutional Laws, & Railroading All The Way Into A Cattlecar On The Road To A Nazi Concentration Camp
Sterilisation in America

30 May 2014

When Do Public Accommodation Laws Become Discrimination And Oppression?

AP:  Colorado panel: Baker must make cakes for gay weddings

He added his bakery has been so overwhelmed by supporters eager to buy cookies and brownies that he does not currently make wedding cakes. 

The couple who sued Phillips, Dave Mullins and Charlie Craig, were pleased that the commission roundly rejected Phillips’ arguments. “We’re just thrilled by that,” Mullins said… 

The panel issued its ruling verbally. It ordered Phillips to stop discriminating against gay people and to report quarterly for two years on staff anti-discrimination training and any customers he refuses to serve.

Read the Article

Gays are making a big public relations mistake. Why would anyone want to force a person to provide a service that has enormous emotional importance when they quite obviously aren’t interested? I wouldn’t want someone to bake my wedding cake or photograph me if his heart and soul weren’t in it. I would want my cake to be memorable and to have photographs that were beautiful and loving. Could I be as assured as possible that my cake or photographs would be the best if I forced someone to do them for me, especially when that person disapproves? Would a militant homosexual want to bake a wedding cake with the message ‘Marriage between one man and one woman is the only true marriage’?

The fact of the matter is that everyone discriminates in one form or another every single day. I like Coke, but hate Pepsi. I’m not a big fan of Mexican food, but love French cuisine.  I discriminate.

I'm a supporter of gay rights, but I also understand why people like Mr Phillips hold the beliefs that they do.  After all, they do have thousands of years of tradition and custom on their side.  I certainly understand why some have been slow to 'come around' and why many never will regardless of the actions of the Thought Police.  I, for one, no more want to live in a society with a secular form of the Taliban or the Committee for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice than I do in Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union, North Korea, or Iran.  The Political Correctness Police have come to the point where they are engaging in nothing more than a 21st-century version of the Salem witch trials.  An intellectual Mao jacket is nothing more than a straightjacket on society. 

Should Sylvia’s in Harlem be forced to host a Neo-Nazi wedding? Should Sylvia Weinstein, the famous and incredible baker of wedding cakes, be forced to bake a cake for the Aryan Nation complete with swastikas? Should anyone be forced to bake birthday cakes for Adolf Hitler Campbell, JoyceLynn Aryan Nation Campbell, and Honszlynn Himmler Jeannie Campbell? Should a woman be forced to take photographs of a female genital mutilation celebration? Should a Muslim service company be forced to provide the wait staff for a party mocking Mohammed? Should a white person be commanded to service a meeting of black militants, who call for the extermination of the white race? Should a black baker be forced to make cakes in the shape of nooses?

Apart from the fact that making obviously uncooperative people perform a service increases the odds of a lower quality product, why would the LGBT community pick this sort of fight when it is quite apparent that they have chosen purposefully to impose their beliefs, opinions, whatever on others to coerce acceptance? It isn’t like this baker was the only person who could have baked the gay couple’s wedding cake. They chose him because he is a Christian and they wanted to force the issue.  This is a case of pure intimidation, spite, and intolerance.  Mr Phillips' religious beliefs were well known and he was targeted specifically because of his Christianity.  Of course, they would never have chosen a Muslim bakery.  As the current CEO of the New York Times Company and former Director-General of the BBC, Mark Thompson, once said, Christianity is treated with far less sensitivity than other religions, especially Islam, because it is 'pretty broad-shouldered' and its adherents are far less likely to react in a violent manner towards the media and society, in general.  I think that it is fairly safe to say that Dave Mullins and Charlie Craig wouldn't have dared demanded that the 'Religion of Peace Bakery' bake a wedding cake for them.

Gays are running a huge risk of a backlash. They have been oppressed in the past and the public has made tremendous strides in acknowledging that fact and accepting them, but how does becoming an intolerant oppressor of others further their cause and increase acceptance? Can they not see that some of them are becoming everything they once claimed to hate?

As someone who supports gay rights, I must say that stories such as this turn me off and make me pull for the underdog. Americans, as a whole in general, usually root for the underdog and I’m not too sure that gays will continue to be the underdog if they begin to be seen as intolerant bigots.

I believe in the rights of freedom of religion, conscience, contract, and association.  There is a tremendous difference between refusing service to an entire class of people based solely upon the colour of their skin and declining to enter into a commercial transaction with an individual or individuals with whom they have an ideological  disagreement that is the product of genuine and deeply-held beliefs not animus.  While Justice Kennedy and others have argued that there is no other reason to oppose gay marriage than bigotry and animus, I disagree.  There are millions of compassionate, honest, and good people that oppose SSM, but nevertheless love homosexuals as they do heterosexuals.  Do some people honestly believe that Pope Francis opposes same sex marriage because he is an intolerant bigot, who despises homosexuals?  Really???  Should he be forced to perform the marriage ceremonies of homosexuals even though SSM violates his deeply-held, honest, and faith-based beliefs?  Doesn't he have as much of a right to decide not to enter into an association as those that choose to enter into the relationship of their choice?

As David Harsanyi once wrote, 'if the state’s authority over consumer choices continues to expand, and societal norms and demographics continue to change, and orthodox Christians find themselves as a minority, as some believe is inevitable, it’d be nice to have a serious debate about the role of the state and faith. Like my colleague Ben Domenech, I trust markets and people over government to regulate bigotry and “bigotry.” The problem is that secular liberals aren’t content with coexistence.  I’ve been writing pro-gay marriage posts since I became a columnist at the Denver Post a decade ago. And though I don’t believe any of those columns or interviews with many gay Coloradans made much of a difference in the world, I do realize I was exceedingly gullible in believing that any group would be content simply being “left alone.” It’s clear that coexisting doesn’t only mean having the freedom to take part in the civil institution of marriage, but it also means compelling others into participation and acceptance. As Will Cain pointed out, the Arizona bill kerfuffle soon became an excuse to hunt for homophobes — some real, most imagined. I know too many religious Americans — Catholics, Evangelicals, Lutherans, and many other denominations — whose generosity and patience have humbled me. It’s nothing more than contemptible bullying to paint entire communities, whose faith has been built on thousands of years of theological and intellectual history, as dogmatic bigots. It’s no better, in fact, than the bigotry the gay community had to deal with for decades.'

In a free society, people must be able to live according to their own consciences and beliefs.  Will there be some people who are offended or have their feelings hurt?  Absolutely, but there is no right not to be offended.  Yes, homosexuals may have their feelings hurt and be offended by the beliefs of some faithful, but is the answer to, instead, enforce conformity of one position thereby hurting the feelings and causing offense to others?  We are told that we must strive to achieve a more equitable, fair, and just society, but how do we attain such if we value the heartfelt opinions, beliefs, and feelings of some more than others?   Will our society be more just and equitable if we force one segment of the population to violate their consciences in order to protect the sensitivities of another?

There is a reason that societies where there is only one permissible thought are littered with millions of corpses.  Human beings are not of one mind.  Their thoughts are as different as their very DNA.  To achieve uniform beliefs, force must be employed.  For some, that might be an acceptable course of action to achieve their agenda, but it is certainly not the sign of an equitable, fair, and just society.

Something to think about for those that believe that an establishment must do business with whomever demands it…

Some Strange Consequences of Public Accommodations Laws

There is a German restaurant called the Alpine Village Inn, in Torrance California. A group of four neo-Nazis went there to eat, each wearing a lapel pin with a swastika on it. The management asked them to take off the lapel pins. They refused. The management asked them to leave. They refused. The management called the police, who arrested them.

Then, remarkably, the Southern California ACLU gets involved, and sues the restaurant for calling the police on the Nazis! This much I’ve confirmed from media accounts. According to the commenter who first alerted me to this story, “the defendants’ insurer eventually settled following unsuccessful pretrial challenges to the complaint, believing they could not prevail under California law!” I’m informed that the restaurant actually lost at trial, and the insurer refused to foot the bill for an appeal.

The lawsuit was brought under California’s Unruh Act, which provides that “all persons within the jurisdiction of this state are free and equal, and no matter what their sex, race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, disability, or medical condition are entitled to the full and equal accommodations, advantages facilities, privileges, or services in all business establishments of every kind whatsoever.” The California courts have held that the protected classes delineated by the Act are not exclusive; the Act also protects arbitrary discrimination by a business establishment based on similar characteristics to the above. Apparently, the insurer thought that “political views” was sufficiently similar to “religion” that the courts would likely rule against the insured. (This was, after all, the Rose Bird Court, which issued a series of absurdly broad and illogical rulings under the Unruh Act; in one of those opinions (Isbister) Bird personally gratuitously insulted a little old lady who donated money to a Boys’ Club as one of the “select few” who wish to be “insulated from the 20th century” because the Boys’ Club didn’t admit girls.)

There are several remarkable things about this story, which occurred in 1986. First, the ACLU of Southern California represented the Nazis, yet, at least by the late 1980s, this local ACLU branch was known as a vigorous proponent of hate speech regulations. How to square that circle, I don’t know. Perhaps the organization had a sudden and dramatic leadership shift. Perhaps the local ACLU leaders saw this as “discrimination based on ideology in public accommodations” and somehow didn’t notice it was also the suppression of hate speech. Perhaps they just had their heads up their behinds.

Second, why was the ACLU concerned about the rights of the Nazi patrons, but not the owners? Why didn’t the owners have a right to send a message that they disapprove of Naziism?

Third, even accepting the absurd premises apparently underlying this lawsuit, that the Unruh Act somehow protects Nazis from discrimination in public accommodation, where was the discrimination here? The restaurant didn’t refuse to serve the Nazis, it simply refused to serve them so long as they were turning the restaurant into a forum for promoting their Nazi views by wearing swastikas. A restaurant couldn’t discriminate against Satanists, does that mean they are required to let the Satanists wear T-shirts showing Jesus being tortured by a gleeful Lucifer?

Fourth, under current hostile environment law, the restaurant could get in serious trouble for not ordering the Nazis to stop wearing the swastikas. Tolerating swastika-wearing patrons would be considering by some to be the creation of an “illegal hostile public environment” for Jews, Gypsies, and others.

If you’re familiar with my views on such issues, you know that I don’t think the restaurant owners can or should be forced to censor the Nazis’ expression of their views (unless the owners censor all points of view except Naziism, which could then be seen as their way of getting around the law and excluding Jews), but I also don’t think that the Nazis can or should have the right to impose their speech on the unwilling owners of the restaurant, who are acting not only on their own behalf, but as agents for their patrons.

Anyway, my jaw just dropped open when I read about this case, and it hasn’t closed yet.

How did a civil rights principle meant to aid African Americans and others who suffered grievous discrimination for generations come to protect the “right” of Neo-Nazis to parade their Nazi wardrobes in a privately owned restaurant against the wishes of management? The short answer is that legislation and its interpretation doesn’t develop from a coherent set of moral principles, but instead based on who is able to persuade the legislatures and the courts to adopt the principles they prefer. The principle involved in Alpine Village case appears to be hostility to the rights of private property owners, not “civil rights.”

When do public accommodation laws become the tools of oppression, intolerance, conformity, and discrimination to be wielded by those that seek to impose their beliefs on society, as a whole?  In other words, when do public accommodation laws, which were passed to redress past discriminatory practises, cross the line and become codified discrimination?