Comment at end
9th March 2010
Glenn Beck/Daniel Hannan/Stuart Varney (2:39)
Glenn Beck, Daniel Hannan and Stuart Varney on freedom of speech and the viability of liberal democracy. (Uploaded June 2009.)
TALKING TO ONESELF
Video opens with Glenn Beck to Daniel Hannan, MEP on Beck’s concerns over Jews being under attack in France. Hannan does not really deal with this, but moves to the issue of how people do not trust western politicians. Then Varney does not really deal with either of those but instead goes on to explain what he sees as the Islamization of Europe.
All typical of how various interpretations and emphases can be put onto the same issue in an unjoined-up way. And the issue?
Islam. But I’m not allowed to talk about that.
Beck: “It’s bad again. All of the old hatreds seem to be starting up again.”
(Start of video) – Glenn Beck says: “Daniel I have a friend who is Jewish and told me just the other day that they have relatives that live in and are successful in France, moved out of France because their synagogue was desecrated, I think they own a deli – their windows were broken, it’s bad. It’s bad again. All of the old hatreds seem to be starting up again. Now you add financial strain to this and really problems with the government and people not trusting the government, they’re calling it ‘the summer of rage’ which could be coming your way this year. How concerned are you on where we’re headed this summer?
Hannan: “We’re not there yet but you would always make a mistake to assume that liberal parliamentary democracy is entrenched forever.”
(From around 00:40) – Daniel Hannan MEP says: “We’re not there yet but you would always make a mistake to assume that liberal parliamentary democracy is entrenched forever. People would have said the same in the 1920s, they would have presumed it was here to stay. I remember much more recently in my lifetime in South America in the 90s you would have assumed that liberal democracy was a permanent fixture, but if you listened carefully people there were people talking the way that people in Europe are now talking about some of their politicians – “they’re all a class apart – they’re in it for themselves – they’re all crooks – they’re all at it”. And look at South America now – there are three countries where basically autocratic leaders have dissolved their parliaments and got rid of any constraints on their power. And if we think that such a thing could never happen in Europe then I don’t think we’re listening very carefully to what people are telling us.”
Varney: “In the absence of REAL honesty… you will not have a civil society.”
(From around 1:33) – Stuart Varney says: “What worries me, Glenn, is the absence of honesty in the public discourse. You are not allowed in Europe, or in America for that matter, to publicly question the role of Islam in your society. Europe has a massive influx of Islamic people and we have massive unemployment in Europe at this point. You’re right, there is a real danger of a summer of rage. But you’re not allowed to talk about this openly and honestly. Consider this – in Holland in the year 2020, ten years away, half of all the people aged 18 and under will be Muslim. Arguably Holland is at the tipping point of a radical shift in its culture. You cannot say that it is going to be in the future a Judao-Christian country. You have to say that it’s turned a corner. You may not talk about that openly and honestly. Geert Wilders, who leads the Freedom Party in the Netherlands, was kept out of Britain precisely because he had challenged Islam. In the absence of real honesty in the public discourse you will not have a civil society.
Are we now speaking freely, honestly? Not Mr Hannan, Conservative member of the European Parliament, it would seem. Is this characteristic of the point made by the last speaker about European denial? And this from the man who has plenty to say on free speech when it comes to Farage and Wilders.
My opinion in those cases? Remember – Wilders was prevented from speaking freely by an EU government, mine, shamefully. Farage was reprimanded for speaking freely but being personally insulting.
The former (exclusion) was the wrong decision by the British government, the latter (reprimand AFTER listening) was the right decision by the European Parliament.
Conflating the two into one “free speech” issue, as does Mr Hannan is entirely the wrong thing to do and blurs the issues yet again.
Hat tip here, though I disagree with this – “Here’s the key difference between Europe and America: liberty. Europe never had it.”
In fact, imho, Europe is one step ahead of the USA in reaching the inevitable goal of Too Much Freedom. Sorry, but there IS such a thing! In unfettered hands, or perhaps wrongly fettered – it’s dangerous.
From Big Hollywood, “The Stoning of Soraya M”
The 2010 Oscar ceremonies have come and gone without a word spoken about “The Stoning of Soraya M.” The searing drama, based on true events, follows the torture of an innocent Iranian woman charged with adultery. It’s the kind of message movie Hollywood doesn’t much care for, stories showcasing horrors that can’t be directly blamed on western culture.