Category Archives: self-control

In Britain, abuse will be tolerated

Compared to the old days, writes Dalrymple, England

has managed the difficult trick of being both much richer and much nastier.

He remembers an Indian doctor in the hospital where he worked half a century ago,

whose exceptional sweetness of character inspired the instant affection of all who met him, telling me that he considered Britain the most civilised country.

No one, Dalrymple points out,

could make that mistake now, not for an instant, for even at the airport at which he arrived he will have noticed prominent written warnings to the British public that violence or abusive behaviour towards staff will not be tolerated: meaning, of course, that in most instances it will be ignored.

From having been among the most self-controlled populations in the world, the British

have gone in half a century to being among the least self-controlled.

Dalrymple notes that the British population is also

the most spied-upon. Britain has almost as many closed-circuit television cameras installed as the rest of the world put together, but they seem to have hardly any effect on the general level of civility. Testifying quite often in court as an expert witness in murder trials, I am astonished to discover in the course of those trials just how much of British life now takes place on camera: every Briton, indeed, spends more time on screen than the most ubiquitous of film stars, whether he knows and approves of it or not.

At the same time,

menace and incompetence have become the twin characteristics of British officialdom.

Dalrymple reflects that societies fall apart when (among other causes)

their ruling élites, political and intellectual, lose faith in their own right or duty to prescribe standards. They become Hamlet-like: the native hue of resolution is sicklied o’er with the pale cast of thought, and they become persuaded that generosity of spirit and broad-mindedness are the only true virtues, even if they result in paralysis in the face of disorder, with all the accompanying miseries of those who suffer it.

Société pour la prévention de la cruauté envers les mouches de l’Ardèche

A new organisation dedicated to protecting this vulnerable group

We have always, warns Dalrymple,

to keep a hold of ourselves, and temper our inclinations by conscious thought and self-control. The fact is that the Kingdom of Cruelty is within us.

Flypapers cannot be permitted in a civilised society

The misery of these oppressed insects must end

He writes that certain people, when for instance hanging up flypapers, and after the cloying ribbons have been hung,

enjoy watching flies arriving on the flypapers and engaging in a struggle that can lead only to their slow death.

Such people delight in

witnessing the suffering of flies.

Outlaw flyribbons now!

They can

happily watch it for many minutes on end.

Therefore Dalrymple has founded the SPCMA, which will campaign for the outlawing of flyribbons.

He points out that

it is not the fault of a fly that it is a fly and not a kitten.

He notes that

if things had been otherwise, we could all have been born flies. There (that is to say the flypapers) but for the grace of God go we.

It is not the fault of a fly that it is a fly and not a kitten

The sadist-moralists

The dehumanisation of people is one of the mechanisms by which atrocities are committed and accepted

The dehumanisation of people is one of the mechanisms by which atrocities are committed and accepted

Committing evil for goodness’ sake, writes Dalrymple,

satisfies the inner sadist and the inner moralist at the same time.

That is why, he says, the beheadings in the Middle East and recently in the Philippines are, for those who conduct them,

such fun.

The latest outrage, Dalrymple reports (though he is sceptical about its veracity), is the

freezing to death by ISIS of 45 of their fighters who retreated, or ran away, before the advance of Iraqi forces; ISIS is alleged to have put the men into a freezer in a forensic morgue in Mosul and then put the bodies by the roadside as a warning to other would-be cowards. For myself, I was a little surprised that as sophisticated an institution as a forensic morgue was still in existence and still functioning in the Islamic State.

Dalrymple is interested in a reader’s comment underneath a report of the alleged atrocity. The commenter describes ISIS as vermin, to be eradicated as such. Dalrymple warns:

There is by now good reason to fear resort to such metaphors, the dehumanisation of people being one of the mechanisms by which atrocities are both committed and accepted. We should fear our own worst thoughts and refrain from giving them expression, for far from assuaging such thoughts, expression of them only goes to make them more frequent and more extreme. By means of such thoughts and such expressions, we become a little more like those who are supposedly the occasion of them, who have also persuaded themselves that there exist human vermin in the world to be eradicated.

This is, he says,

a call to decency and self-control, not to political correctness. Political correctness is the means by which we try to control others; decency is the means by which we try to control ourselves. There is no doubt which is the easier to undertake, and the more pleasurable and gratifying. There is a considerable element of sadism in political correctness.

From Dr Johnson's dictionary

From Dr Johnson’s dictionary

You do realise, don’t you, that your horse is homosexual?

Equus africanus asinus

Equus africanus asinus

The law in England today, writes Dalrymple, is an

ass.

The British State

does not know how to deter, prevent, or punish.

In England, where

an aggressive popular culture glorifies egotistical impulsivity and denigrates self-control,

the violent and evil

may destroy other people’s lives with impunity, for the British State does not care in the least about protecting them,

Equus ferus caballus

Equus ferus caballus

being

indifferent to and incapable of the one task that inescapably belongs to it: preserving the peace and ensuring that its citizens may go about their lawful business in safety.

The result is that England has

the highest rate of (real) crime in the Western world.

But that does not mean the British State is inactive. It takes some things very seriously indeed. For example, there is the case of the Oxford student who, slightly drunk after celebrating the end of his exams, approached a mounted policeman. ‘Excuse me,’ he said. ‘Do you realise your horse is gay?’

The policeman called two squad cars to his aid, and, in a city in which it is notoriously difficult to interest the police in so trivial a matter as robbery or burglary, they arrived almost at once. The mounted policeman thought that the young man’s remark was likely to ’cause harassment, alarm or distress’. He was arrested and charged under the Public Order Act for having made a ‘homophobic remark’ and spent the night in jail. Brought before the magistrates the following day, he was fined.

Mankind’s increasing tendency to blubber

Screen Shot 2015-08-23 at 08.22.23The blubber, says Dalrymple, is

particularly grotesque in the Anglo-Saxon world, but is spreading at an alarming rate elsewhere.

Obesity, he writes,

Screen Shot 2015-08-23 at 08.30.56is not straightforwardly a disease like any other, but rather (in most cases) the consequence of human weakness. I hold this view not only or even mainly because of the evidence in its favour, but because I am afraid that to hold the opposite view, that obesity is in principle no different from, say, Parkinson’s disease, is to turn mankind from subject to object.

We cannot

Screen Shot 2015-08-23 at 08.39.05become good, sensible, or temperate by purely technical means that require nothing of us as moral beings endowed with agency except compliance with treatment and obedience to technicians.

Appetite will not

Screen Shot 2015-08-23 at 08.41.33come under the control of geneticists, who will relieve us of the necessity to exercise self-control.

Screen Shot 2015-08-23 at 08.43.35

Screen Shot 2015-08-23 at 08.01.52

Cradle of democratic corruption

Screen Shot 2015-07-26 at 07.39.26

Popular dishonesty, writes Dalrymple, is ‘an inherent problem wherever the universal franchise is unaccompanied by widespread virtues such as honesty, self-control, providence, prudence, and self-respect’.

Mass-produced muck

Screen Shot 2015-07-25 at 07.30.41

Splendidly titled

To an infantilised people, it has a strong appeal

Dalrymple detests soft drinks and

the plastic bottles in which they come; to see people carry them around with them as if they were dolls infuriates me.

These drinks, he points out,

don’t relieve thirst, they create it: a perfect recipe from an unscrupulous commercial point of view.

Dalrymple is delighted to read in a paper in the British Medical Journal

that those who drink these disgusting concoctions are more likely than others to develop type 2 diabetes. Such diabetes is not only the wages of sin—gluttony—but of something that affects our everyday lives even worse, namely mass bad taste.

Screen Shot 2015-07-25 at 07.41.57

Abominably written

The peoples of the US and Britain,

having no proper culinary tradition, are childishly attracted to mass-produced muck. Only in such countries could you sell industrially prepared doughnuts with blue icing; people eat with their eyes, not with their mouths.

In what kind of culinary culture, Dalrymple asks, could a product advertise itself as a Whopper? A crude and childish one, he answers. More self-control in food consumption is needed than ever before,

just as self-control has been derided as an oppressive or even ridiculous notion.

Screen Shot 2015-07-25 at 08.15.02

Only for the US and UK markets

Dalrymple comes across a book called Fat Chance (2013), which, though

abominably written,

comes,

persuasively enough, to the conclusion that John Yudkin came to in the neglected, splendidly titled Pure, White and Deadly (1972).

Dalrymple notes that the author of the 2013 book, Robert Lustig, blames

the food companies and farming subsidies for the epidemic of type 2 diabetes (they are, of course, guilty as charged), but never the people. This is because it is regarded as proper to blame only the rich for anything and never ‘ordinary’ people, including the fat, though where the sins of the rich come from then becomes a little mysterious unless it is assumed that they are a caste biologically apart from the rest of humanity.

Screen Shot 2015-07-25 at 08.21.09As for those who swear by organic carrots and the like, this is only because

in Anglo-Saxon countries, meals tend to be regarded as medical procedures. If it were proved that industrial doughnuts with blue icing were the very thing for health, queues of joggers would form to obtain them.

Dalrymple urges that it be made a criminal offence to take a child to a fast-food restaurant.

If someone were to tell me that children love those restaurants, I should reply, ‘But that is precisely why it should be a criminal offence.’

Drunken retching as self-realisation

Screen Shot 2015-07-03 at 08.15.24The British, Dalrymple points out, are

despised throughout the world wherever they congregate in any numbers.

In any English town on any night of the week you will see

scenes of charmless vulgarity, in which thousands of scantily clad, lumpen sluts scream drunkenly, and men vomit proudly in the gutters.

It has been suggested that the English might be able to develop civilised Mediterranean café culture. Dalrymple remarks:

You might as well preach the comforts of the igloo and the tastiness of whale blubber to the Maasai.

Much of the British population believes

not only that it has no duty to control itself, but that it is harmful to try to do so. It believes that screaming, smashing bottles, vomiting, urinating against walls in full view of others, swaying drunkenly in the gutter, and hailing strangers to give them lifts, are essential to its health and emotional wellbeing, that drinking in this fashion is Aristotelian catharsis.

For the English,

there can be no higher accolade for a night out than that no trace of it remains in the brain. ‘Getting wasted’ and then behaving antisocially before passing out is the pinnacle of social life.

Just as the British government is so corrupt that it does not know that it is corrupt, so the British people

are so lacking in self-respect that they do not know that self-respect is desirable.

In England, drunkenness

to the point of brutish amnesia is regarded as admirable, a high achievement.

Grave errors of the Greeks

Screen Shot 2015-07-02 at 08.07.10

Time for many Greeks to look in the mirror

Political and popular dishonesty

Greek politicians, writes Dalrymple, erred in

offering a substantial proportion of the Greek population a standard of living that was economically unjustified, maintained for a time by borrowing, and in the long run unsustainable, in return for votes. They borrowed the money and then dispensed largesse, like monarchs throwing coins to the multitudes.

The Greek people erred in

accepting the bribe that the politicians offered; they were only too prepared to live well at someone else’s expense.

Cradle of democratic corruption

Popular dishonesty is a problem

wherever the universal franchise is unaccompanied by widespread virtues such as honesty, self-control, providence, prudence, and self-respect.

A reduction in their salaries and perquisites of many Greeks

is not only economically necessary but just.

Potty-training in reverse

Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 07.40.22The emotional incontinence of the British

Dalrymple notes in the English

  • lack of dignity
  • absence of self-respect
  • shamelessness of public conduct
  • militant slovenliness

Almost the entire population of Britain

looks as though it has let itself go: and considers itself right to have done so.

Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 07.46.46The change has been wrought

by a gestalt switch in attitude to the public expression of emotion. Where once emotional restraint and self-control were admired, now it is emotional incontinence that the British aim for. It is as if they had undergone potty-training in reverse.

The English have been persuaded that emotions

are like pus in an abscess. If they are not released — by screaming and shouting, hugging and crying, wailing and raging, and the more publicly the better — they will turn inwards and cause emotional septicæmia. The person who controls himself is not only a figure of fun, but a traitor to his own best interests.

It is no surprise, then, that the British are

despised around the world.