Saturday, August 14, 2010

Homage to Tony Judt

All organized religion is either evil or leads to evil.  I used to think that after a millenia or two, religious leaders and their faithful followers might settle down some and we wouldn't have something like the Inquisition or Holocaust repeated, but I was disabused of this notion when Israel turned to institutional terror, and Jewish people, especially in the U.S., became blinkered about Zionism.  It is true in my opinion, as Alan Sillitoe had noted, that too often anti-Israeli pro Palestinian mouthings are anti-Semitism by the back door, but that does not excuse the ugliness of things when an oppressed people become the oppressor, as here in the U.S., the early settlers, after achieving Independence, began to systematically attempt to eliminate Indian tribes.  Fueled by a strangely quick and for the most part unanticipated economic meltdown, white liberal guilt, a monolithic black vote, and the righteous disgust with years of Republican domination, Obama became our President.  Despite his primary skill, sophism, and a quick intelligence easily mistaken for intellectualism due to the fact that the U.S. is controlled on all levels by lawyers ("laws written by lawbreakers"), the military and police, investment banking honchos/dishonest business entrepreneurs and others of that cultureless ilk, many did believe that a more humane country would emerge.  With eight years of Bush and Cheney and cohorts no one expected anything other than crony capitalism favoring wealth, oil, and war-mongering.  But even a slight amelioration, which is what Zizek said was the best we could hope for, has in no way occurred.  The latest wrongheadedness on the part of the President is his approval of the mosque complex.  I for one do not believe that Islam is a religion of peace.  The Koran is filled with vicious anti-Semitism which cannot be excused as something merely historical.  Leaving aside similarites with evangelical Christianity, with both Moslems and Christians slaughtering each other for centuries in the name of holiness, what we have today is a continued incursion of Arab oil money moving West adjacent to the very spot in New York where so many were killed. Non-Muslims cannot even visit Mecca; what would Islamic leaders say if President Obama asked for a church or synagogue or inter-faith complex to be built there? It is the duty of every Muslim, as stated in the Koran, to convert unbelievers, by the sword if necessary.  More oppressive of women than any other religion in history, the mad mullahs, ignorant imams and their lackeys, especially in Iran, desire to Torquemada the world.  Obama's approving the mosque is another one of his errors in the name of a more forgiving country.  Perhaps he would like to have al-Megrahi dedicate the mosque?  A year now since his release at the behest of Scots nationalists (betraying the ideals of Wallace) working with New Labour corrupt Blairites (indistinguishable from Tories, really), and BP, and their deals in Libya dependent on said release.  As one blogger put it: "Of course there is freedom of religion in the U.S. and the idea of discriminating against a particular religion offends our fundamental values.  But it is a separate question whether the plan to build a mosque is a good one that persons of good will should choose to pursue as they exercise the freedom they are most assuredly guaranteed."  The problem is not simply the wishy-washyness of Obama and centrist republicrats, nor the greed-laden legacies of the Clintons, but the continued lowering of consciousness in America.  There was hue and cry raised by people when Obama called for a moratorium on drilling for six months.  Gulf residents have become dependent on the filth of oil revenue. Health care scams, millionaire doctors, billions for bloated research leading nowhere, big pharma, and insurance companies continue unabated despite the illusion of progress generated by the self-congratulatory smugness of the self-serving congress and their Uriah Heeps.  I don't believe there is an answer.  "There is a plague called man."  To use a convenient myth, we were chucked out of Eden and a return to a pre-lapsarian state is not possible.  We could, of course, be a little kinder to each other.                           

PS & N.B. ... (August 16th).....Even the name "Cordoba Initiative" shows disrespect and intolerance to all who are not of Islam. It is deception (and self-deception on the part of Muslims) to believe that the Muslim army hordes who invaded and conquered and occupied the Iberian peninsula in the Middle Ages for several centuries before finally being driven out, had established some sort of "golden age" in Spain. The "conviviencia" as it is sometimes called was a golden age only for Muslims, everyone else being a second-class citizen at best. The leading Judaic thinker (Maimonides) and the leading poet (Halevi) both were forced to flee Islamic Spain in fear of their lives. Scholars and historians today disagree as to the extent of the oppression in Cordoba, but there is general agreement that towards the end of the occupation it was little more than slaughter of non-believers and a prelude to the horrors of the Inquisition which followed.