Vehemence is the tribute egotism pays to guilt

Jeremy Corbyn compares the Israeli government to the Nazi, appears to mean it, and is applauded by many for doing so

The easy resort to the most extreme possible descriptions of people and actions that one detests seems, writes Dalrymple,

to be a characteristic of our times.

This combination of moral imprecision and verbal inflation has occurred in the West

with the large expansion of tertiary education.

The word fascist has come to be used

lightly, almost joyously, to describe anybody or any policy which conflicts with the moral orthodoxy of the moment.

Its employment

obviates the need to examine and refute arguments, just as no one needs (or is able) to refute a paranoid delusion.

The label

by itself is enough to stifle discussion, a word without definite meaning but with a connotation like the grin of the Cheshire Cat that remains when all else of that creature has melted away.

Vehemence, Dalrymple notes, is

the tribute that egotism pays to guilt. I ought to feel the wrongs of the world deeply because that is how good people feel them: therefore if I express myself strongly enough I will at least appear to be good. The stronger the words the deeper the feeling I appear to feel.

For instance,

a possible future prime minister of Great Britain, Jeremy Corbyn, compares the Israeli government to the Nazi, appears to mean it, and is applauded by many for doing so.

Trackbacks are closed, but you can post a comment.


  • barebones  On September 25, 2018 at 02:44

    I am new to your site, and I arrived here from where “Vehemence is the tribute egotism pays to guilt” was re-presented. I have the following comments:

    Fascist/Nazi – It is colloquially understood to imply Criminally Abusive Behavior.

    Corbyn – Zionism and the Talmud together muchly synonymize to Nazi and indeed appear to be the tacit if not de facto Israeli “Law of the Land”.

    Israel – The word Nazi being applied to Jews, while may be perceived by some to be accurate given the above definition is, if based on history, a literarily poor choice. On the other hand, the Jewish religious sense of superiority of being, claims of mitochondrial evidence defining Jews as a “race”, and required, proven Jewish heritage as prerequisite to Israeli citizenship all attesting to the establishment of an apartness, doesn’t do much to minimize the impression of non-Jews with the descriptor Nazi being associated with Israel!

    Actually – With some substitutions, this article is equally applicable to Israel/Jews, or, for that matter, most constructions based on the individual as the paradigm!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: