Category Archives: democracy

Motherfucker of parliaments

The political class has set itself against the people’s will

Dalrymple writes that the temporary suspension of Parliament by Boris Johnson

has been depicted, in the world’s Press and in Britain, as all but a coup d’état, the manœuvre of an incipient dictator, at the least an authoritarian measure.

It is, he says,

the opposite. It is designed to prevent a coup. The mirror-image of truth has largely prevailed.

Three years of manufactured chaos

Dalrymple lays out the facts.

Parliament agreed to hold a referendum on Britain’s membership of the European Union. Although it had no force from the purely constitutional point of view, it was not intended as a glorified opinion poll and it was implicit that the winning side would decide the issue. No strong objections were raised in advance by those in favour of Britain remaining in the EU because they felt they would win with ease. Despite — or because of — the support of David Cameron and Barack Obama for the campaign for Britain to remain, those in favour of leaving gained 52% of the votes. Parliament, the majority of whose members were in favour of remaining, passed a resolution in obedience to the result; it would have been too brazen a defiance of the popular opinion that they had canvassed to have done otherwise. But having done this, they opposed both the deal negotiated by Theresa May and the withdrawal of Britain without any agreement. The EU had reiterated that it would not renegotiate the terms: it had no reason to do so, given May’s surrender on all fronts. Thus Parliament wanted neither the only deal then possible nor no deal.

The élite knows best

Parliament was

attempting to prevent any kind of withdrawal whatsoever, even in May’s extremely attenuated form. It set itself up against the will of the people as expressed in the referendum. Parliament was expressing its authority over popular opinion, presumably on the ground that it knew best what was good for the people on whose opinion on the question it had sought. If anyone could be accused of mounting a coup, albeit a slow-moving and indirect one, and of political authoritarianism, it was Parliament.

Suppose, says Dalrymple, that the vote had gone the other way — that 52% of those who voted had done so to remain.

Does anyone suppose for a moment that the disappointed leavers would have refused to accept the vote and manœuvred to thwart the will of the majority? A few might still have argued for eventual withdrawal, but would not have obstructed or threatened the continuance of the government as the remainers have done. Who are the democrats round here?

Those who demonstrate against Johnson’s manœuvre

do so because they claim to want Parliament to have its say. But Parliament has had its say for three years, without resolving the issue, and with a determination to thwart implementation of the resolution it had passed — because it never had any intention of carrying out the people’s wishes as expressed in the referendum.

Dalrymple notes that

to hold a plebiscite and ignore the result is now a European tradition, but to call it a democratic procedure is to twist the word beyond any possible meaning. Both the French and the Dutch publics voted against the proposed European Constitution by a wider margin than that by which the British voted to leave the EU, but got it anyway in a revised form, as a binding treaty rather than as a constitution. The political class thus triumphed over the population, banking on the fundamental apathy of the latter. But this a dangerous game.

Outraged dignity

The protesters against Johnson’s manœuvre

are not trying to defend parliamentary democracy, about which they do not give a fig: what they are protesting against is that the votes of those persons whom they consider ignorant, uneducated, prejudiced and xenophobic have a chance of being taken seriously, indeed as seriously as their own. This is an outrage to their dignity.

But as Dalrymple points out,

the educated are not ipso facto wiser than the uneducated, nor are they necessarily the stoutest defenders of freedom, a fact evident on many American campuses where opinion is free only as long as it coincides with the doxa. Among the greatest foes of freedom today are many of the educated. They are the anointed whose vision must prevail, and mirror-image truth serves that end.

He adds that

time is short, but ample enough for further betrayal.

The political class is a law unto itself

A real ray of sunshine: Philip Hammond is one of the leading Quislings

The anti-Johnson protesters are enemies of democracy

Dalrymple writes:

You would have thought, from the howls that greeted Boris Johnson’s suspension of Parliament, that he had appointed himself prime minister for life. Our democracy was in danger, said the demonstrators, meaning that Johnson’s manœuvre had made it harder for Parliament to obstruct the wishes of the people as expressed in the referendum.

Jacob Rees-Mogg, he says,

was right when he said that the outrage was bogus: it was that of a spoiled child who doesn’t want to go to bed.

Plebiscitary democracy,

in which a government puts questions to the population in the expectation of getting the answer it wants, is dangerous. The modern European tradition is to hold a plebiscite and take no notice of the result if it is ‘wrong’. This is what the demonstrating ‘defenders of democracy’ want. If they had objected beforehand to the procedure, pointing for example to the absurdity of deciding so complex a question on the basis of a single vote decided by 50% of the votes plus one, they might have had a point. But they did not. They expected to win the referendum and only turned against it because of the unexpected result.

Parliament, Dalrymple points out,

has conducted a long rearguard action against putting into effect the vote that it called. The majority of MPs were opposed to Brexit, but instead of coming straight out with it, they prevaricated so long and so efficiently that they almost scuppered the whole process. Having canvassed public opinion in a supposedly binding referendum on a vital subject, to ignore the result can only strengthen the impression that the political class is a law unto itself.

Increase your IQ. Exterminate all the brutes!

Dalrymple explains that Masie Nguema Biyogo Ñegue Ndong, better known as Francisco Macías Nguema,

was democratically elected but no democrat. As Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is reported to have said, democracy is a train — you alight once you have reached your destination, in Macías Nguema’s case, the killing or exile of half his country’s population and the enslavement of the rest.

Among Macías Nguema’s many peculiarities was

a hatred of people who wore glasses, whom he assumed to be intellectuals and therefore dangerous. I surmise that this hatred had its origin in the three times he failed his exams to enter the colonial civil service.

He restored his self-esteem

by the degradation of his countrymen in general, and people with glasses in particular. If you kill all the people of above-average intelligence, your chances of having above-average intelligence yourself rise.

The only real democracy

Switzerland, writes Dalrymple, is

the only country where the people control the government in more than a nominal and intermittent fashion, and can call it to account at any time, on any subject, at any level of the administration.

In no country is central government less important. The president

changes every year, and the position is honorific. Many Swiss do not know his (or her) name.

It is

a matter of pride to the Swiss. Who needs rulers when you can rule yourself? Even the granting of citizenship to foreigners is not a function of the central government. Social security is under rigorous local control. The population makes decisions on the matters of most concern to it.

Unlike the plebiscites sometimes held in other countries, à la Napoleon III or Hitler, the Swiss

have referendums called by the people at various levels: communal, cantonal, or federal, and whose results are binding on whatever level of government they concern. (The modern European tradition is to hold a national election and disregard the results, achieving the worst of both worlds.) The Swiss are forever voting: the citizen feels that he has a real say in how things are organised.

The ‘potential space’ of Islamism

With its ready-made diagnosis and prescriptions, writes Dalrymple, it

opens up and fills with the pus of implacable hatred for many in search of a reason for and a solution to their discontents.

According to Islamism, Dalrymple notes, the West can never meet the demands of justice, because it is

  • decadent
  • materialistic
  • individualistic
  • heathen
  • democratic rather than theocratic

Only

a return to the principles and practices of 7th-century Arabia will resolve all personal and political problems at the same time.

This notion, he points out, is

no more (and no less) bizarre or stupid than the Marxist notion that captivated so many Western intellectuals throughout the 20th century: that the abolition of private property would lead to final and lasting harmony among men.

A stalking horse for unfreedom

Dalrymple writes that the burkini affair

leaves me uneasy. There are two current demands in our societies: the right to mark ourselves out from others, and the right not to be discriminated against if we do so. These two rights are not logically incompatible, but if too strongly insisted upon simultaneously will destroy the cohesion of any society.

Moreover,

I cannot help but recall the words of Mr Erdoğan, well before he became as eminent and powerful as he has since become. Democracy is a train (or tram, in some citations) which is useful in getting you to where you want to go, and then you get off.

Could it be, asks Dalrymple,

that the demand for freedom is here a stalking horse for unfreedom, that a demand for freedom for oneself will end in a demand for the abrogation of the freedoms of others? This would not be unprecedented in recent history: the communists demanded full liberal-democratic freedoms in order later to be able to destroy them.

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Sturgeon is no ray of sunshine

Screen Shot 2016-06-28 at 07.53.42Physiognomy, writes Dalrymple,

is an inexact science. Suffice it to say that Nicola Sturgeon does not have a kindly face.

Her concept of democracy, he notes, is

odd. To call it self-serving would be a very mild way of putting it. When the referendum, to which she had not objected, produced a result that she did not like, she said that it was ‘democratically unacceptable’. You can have a referendum so long as it produces the result that I want. In this she is at one with the bien pensant signatories of the petition to have another referendum, and another, until the population gets it right.

When in the last general election the Scots nationalists

obtained every single Scottish seat in Westminster bar one, leaving more than half of the Scottish voters completely unrepresented, not a peep about democratic unacceptability was heard from Sturgeon. One can well imagine what she might have said, in her sour and grating way, if the nationalists had polled 40 per cent of the votes and not obtained a single seat.

Like fascists,

she knows all about plebiscitary democracy: she has an instinct for it. When the Scots vote again for independence, you may be sure that the million Scots living in England will not be allowed to vote.

And the Scottish nationalists who want to leave the UK but remain in the EU

accuse people who want to leave of xenophobia!

Perpetual US presidential race

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Insufferable

Dalrymple writes that the more firmly politicians believe in their heavenly mandate,

the more the political class is divided from the sacred people from whom that mandate allegedly derives. Increasingly many of the potential candidates in the perpetual American presidential race are close relatives of previous candidates or of high-flying politicians.

Many a monarch and even dictator

has been more physically accessible to the populace than modern democratic politicians, suggesting a deficiency of real rather than assumed or theoretical legitimacy. Democracy in the modern sense encourages monomania in the population, in which every citizen is viewed as, and many actually become, a potential assassin, from whom the democratic politician must be protected like gold in vaults.

A religion of peace

Screen Shot 2015-07-01 at 08.21.04It’s just that Muslims choose strange ways of showing it

At Sousse, 38 people — 25 of them British — were murdered by a Mohammedan fundamentalist gunman at an hotel (in an atrocity prefigured in the 2001 Michel Houellebecq novel Plateforme).

The attack possessed, writes Dalrymple, logic from the Islamo-Leninist ‘the worse the better’ point of view. Tourists

like sun, sea and sites, but not at the cost of their lives. Tourism can survive a dictatorship such as that of Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, but not a democratically elected government that cannot guarantee security.

After the attacks, David Cameron

made a statement in which he reiterated, among other things, that Islam was a religion of peace. He was under no pressure, except that of his own pusillanimity, to say any such thing, which is in flat contradiction both to history and to the state of the world today. President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi of Egypt would not have said anything as stupid or as cowardly.

Leadership, says Dalrymple, should not

propound blatant untruths. It is true that most Muslims are peaceful and want to get on with their lives; the same is true of almost everyone, including Marxists. It is blatantly obvious that not all terrorists are Muslim; but when they are Muslim, their religious ideas are a necessary precondition of their acts.

The EU racket: how it works

Screen Shot 2015-04-04 at 20.55.35Dalrymple answers your questions.

When politico-bureaucrats use cant terms such as ‘ever closer union’ or ‘the construction of Europe’, what do they mean?

The phrase ‘the construction of Europe’ is often used, but never with any reference as to what, even approximately, is being constructed. It is as if the entire population of Europe were being invited on to a magic mystery tour, neither the destination nor the experiences en route having been specified. The population has merely to trust the drivers and the guides.

Screen Shot 2015-04-04 at 20.56.47What is the object of this ‘construction’?

There can be only one aim, one blueprint: a sovereign superstate that, given the modern tendency to centralisation, will leave the leaders of entire countries with fewer powers than governors of the American states.

Why are leaders of nationalisms — Catalans, Flemings, Scots, etc. — that threaten to break up long-established states so in favour of ever closer union?

Those who claim to want independence but who are simultaneously enthusiastic defenders of ‘the construction of Europe’ are enthusiastic place-seekers.

Screen Shot 2015-04-04 at 21.00.49What is the fate of such nationalisms under the European Union?

Ever less sovereignty.

Until that sovereignty withers away?

The respective nations already have such autonomy as they are ever likely to be allowed in the new dispensation to which they claim to be attached.

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Edward Heath (right), the worst British prime minister of the 20th century, and friend

Why are so many members of the French and German élites in favour of the EU?

The European Union gives the French the illusion of power and the Germans a possibility of being something other than German.

Why does the political class of all European countries so strongly favour the European racket?

It gives them the hope of eternal life, or at least of power beyond the normal natural life of a democratic politician. It is a giant pension fund for European politicians.

Screen Shot 2015-04-04 at 21.04.47

Life is good

Does it not give them a bit of a break from chasing votes?

Politicians grow tired of the political game as it is played in parliamentary democracies with its tiresome and anxiety-provoking necessity to be re-elected every now and then, and want to retire to the sunny uplands of the European administration with its large salaries and even more generous expense accounts, where nothing so vulgar as an election ever takes place and where you can be important for ever, avoiding tax in perfect tranquillity and never have to pay for lunch.

Screen Shot 2015-04-04 at 21.12.47What is going through the minds of the corrupt politicians?

Who, after listening to a conversation on a bus or in a bar, would want to make it his life’s work to solicit the votes of the idiotic participants, or to make sure he said or did nothing to upset them? Such would be a life of hell, of never being able to say what you really think, of walking always on eggshells, of being so afraid of saying something that is out of line that you are reduced to langue de bois.