Thursday, December 28, 2017

The Middle Of The Octave Is Where I Always Go Flat...

     ...which means you get another of those dreaded “assorted” posts today. Apologies, Gentle Reader; I’m just not “up” for anything more ambitious.

1. The Kwanzaa Scam.

     The great Mike Hendrix reminds us about the provenance of this supposed “celebration:”

     Ron Karenga (aka Dr. Maulana Ron Karenga) invented the seven-day feast (Dec. 26-Jan. 1) in 1966, branding it a black alternative to Christmas. The idea was to celebrate the end of what he considered the Christmas-season exploitation of African Americans.
     Now, the point: There is no part of Kwanzaa that is not fraudulent. Begin with the name. The celebration comes from the Swahili term “matunda yakwanza,” or “first fruit,” and the festival’s trappings have Swahili names — such as “ujima” for “collective work and responsibility” or “muhindi,” which are ears of corn celebrants set aside for each child in a family.
     Unfortunately, Swahili has little relevance for American blacks. Most slaves were ripped from the shores of West Africa. Swahili is an East African tongue.
     To put that in perspective, the cultural gap between Senegal and Kenya is as dramatic as the chasm that separates, say, London and Tehran. Imagine singing “G-d Save the Queen” in Farsi, and you grasp the enormity of the gaffe.
     Worse, Kwanzaa ceremonies have no discernible African roots. No culture on earth celebrates a harvesting ritual in December, for instance, and the implicit pledges about human dignity don’t necessarily jibe with such still-common practices as female circumcision and polygamy. The inventors of Kwanzaa weren’t promoting a return to roots; they were shilling for Marxism. They even appropriated the term “ujima,” which Julius Nyerere cited when he uprooted tens of thousands of Tanzanians and shipped them forcibly to collective farms, where they proved more adept at cultivating misery than banishing hunger.
     Even the rituals using corn don’t fit. Corn isn’t indigenous to Africa. Mexican Indians developed it, and the crop was carried worldwide by white colonialists.

     But wait; there’s more! This Karenga clown doesn’t seem the type to deserve anyone’s attention:

     The man who created the holiday, Maulana Karenga was convicted in 1971 of torturing two women who were members of US (United Slaves), a black nationalist cult he had founded. A May 14, 1971, article in the Los Angeles Times related the testimony of one of the women:
     “Deborah Jones, who once was given the Swahili title of an African queen, said she and Gail Davis were whipped with an electrical cord and beaten with a karate baton after being ordered to remove their clothes. She testified that a hot soldering iron was placed in Miss Davis’ mouth and placed against Miss Davis’ face and that one of her own big toes was tightened in a vise. Karenga, head of US, also put detergent and running hoses in their mouths, she said.”

     I don’t care what race you claim to be; that doesn’t sound like a guy whose lead I’d follow.

2. A Celebration Of Sorrow.

     Today, December 28, commemorates the most horrifying consequence of the birth of Jesus Christ:


     The Holy Innocents (1st c.) are the children mentioned in the account of Jesus' birth in Matthew's Gospel (2:16-18). When the Magi came to Jerusalem to find and adore the Baby Jesus, the newborn King of the Jews, King Herod requested that they inform him of the Child's location under the pretense of offering Him adoration, too. After paying the Child homage and offering Him their gifts, the Wise Men were warned in a dream not to betray Jesus' location, and departed for their home country by another route. Meanwhile the Holy Family was warned by an Angel to flee into Egypt. King Herod fell into a jealous rage over the Magi's failure to report back to him. He ordered all the baby boys aged two years and under to be killed, according to the appearance of the Bethlehem Star to the Three Wise Men, in an attempt to kill the Baby Jesus. These baby boys died not only for Christ, but in his stead. The Church venerates them as martyrs. It is uncertain how many children were killed, whether a small number, or in the thousands. The Latin Church instituted the feast of the Holy Innocents in the fifth century. The Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls in Rome is believed to possess the bodies of several of the Holy Innocents. Their feast day is commemorated on December 28th.

     This aspect of the Christmas season is as important to remember as the birth of the Savior. It underscores the lust and savagery to which they who value power above all other things are prone.

3. Ideologies And Confusions About Them.

     Courtesy of the seemingly indefatigable Charles Hill, I made my way to this blog, maintained by film critic Sheila O’Malley, commemorating the late, great Robert Conquest:

     Conquest was a very important part of my political education, along with other “apostates” like George Orwell, Rebecca West and Arthur Koestler. I have no political “ideology.” Not really. I distrust ideology. I distrust Orthodoxy. I distrust GROUPS. I’m great at parties! If I had a political “ideology” it would be something along the lines of the Hippocratic Oath, I guess. But the one constant in my sparse personal political system is that Man should never be trusted with power. Neither should Woman. Either. Neither should be trusted with power.

     To which I replied:

     You say here:
     I distrust ideology. I distrust Orthodoxy.

     But these are two separate things. They should not be conflated.

     An ideology is a model for how some aspect of human nature operates. Within its proper domain, it might well be highly useful: i.e., its predictions might be more accurate than those of other ideologies applied to that domain. Orthodoxy is a decision by someone to accept the prescriptions and proscriptions of some doctrine in whole and in part and to refuse to question them. But the refusal to question elevates the doctrine to a faith – and an ideology, like a scientific theory, loses the confidence (and much of the interest) of rational minds at that point.

     “Question “even the existence of god; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blindfolded fear.” – Thomas Jefferson, in a letter to a nephew.

     Continuing on, you say:

     But the one constant in my sparse personal political system is that Man should never be trusted with power. Neither should Woman. Either. Neither should be trusted with power.

     If you’re serious about this and mean this as it stands — i.e., if you assert that this model is applicable to human societies and functions better than others in that domain — you have asserted your confidence, though perhaps not your orthodoxy, in an ideology. It’s called anarchism.

     You see, we can’t really avoid ideologies. They’re the product of goal selection plus rational thought, tempered by the gathering of available evidence. It’s when we cease to look critically at them and try to find better ones that trouble really starts. But this is far too large a subject for a comment at anyone’s blog.

     Miss O’Malley immediately accused me of “mansplaining.” Well, some people are just like that, I suppose.

4. Migrants?

     Jorge Cardinal Bergoglio, a.k.a. Pope Francis, does terrible harm to the Church and the Faith nearly every time he opens his mouth:

     Vatican City (AFP) – Pope Francis was Monday to give his traditional “Urbi et Orbi” Christmas address, after urging the world’s 1.3 billion Catholics not to ignore the plight of migrants “driven from their land” because of leaders willing to shed “innocent blood”.
     “So many other footsteps are hidden in the footsteps of Joseph and Mary,” the Argentine pontiff, himself the grandson of Italian migrants, told worshippers at Christmas Eve mass in Saint Peter’s Basilica.
     “We see the tracks of millions of persons who do not choose to go away but, driven from their land, leave behind their dear ones.”

     Robert Spencer replies thus:

     Yes, of course, today’s Muslim migrants are exactly like Joseph and Mary. Exactly. Jihad Watch reader Mark says, “Somehow I missed the part about how Mary and Joseph traveled to Bethlehem to plunder, rape and steal from the residents there…”
     All of the jihadis who murdered 130 people in Paris in November 2015 had just entered Europe as refugees. Is it racism and xenophobia to recall that in February 2015, the Islamic State boasted it would soon flood Europe with as many as 500,000 refugees? Or that the Lebanese Education Minister said in September 2015 that there were 20,000 jihadis among the refugees in camps in his country?
     Meanwhile, 80% of migrants who have come to Europe claiming to be fleeing the war in Syria aren’t really from Syria at all. So why are they claiming to be Syrian and streaming into Europe, and now the U.S. as well? An Islamic State operative gave the answer when he boasted in September 2015, shortly after the migrant influx began, that among the flood of refugees, 4,000 Islamic State jihadis had already entered Europe. He explained their purpose: “It’s our dream that there should be a caliphate not only in Syria but in all the world, and we will have it soon, inshallah.” These Muslims were going to Europe in the service of that caliphate: “They are going like refugees,” he said, but they were going with the plan of sowing blood and mayhem on European streets. As he told this to journalists, he smiled and said, “Just wait.”

     The case for dismissing Bergoglio as an anti-pope gets stronger with each passing day.

     That’s all for today, Gentle Reader. Have a serene day...if you can after reading the above. I feel soiled by some of it, but, well, I suspect that few of you come here for the jokes and cat videos.

1 comment:

Pascal said...

"and let me guess. You’re a man." LOL.

That's the shortest form of "Hey, buster, I'm a bigot, and beyond reach of your ilk besides" that I've seen.

Her later "like I care" added an exclamation point. Just in case we dim-bulbs missed her hubris.

Critical Theory keeps on working.