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Friday, May 30, 2008

Culturst School Lessons

Yesterday the U.K. University and College Union’s Congress (UCUC)voted to discriminate against Israeli academics. We should discriminate, but our culturist discrimination should be FOR OUR SIDE! Accepting that both sides of the Israel / Palestinian conflict think they sit on the side of right, we first must acknowledge that a conflict exists. Then we should notice Muslim nations support Palestinians and Israel is Western aligned. Finally the U.K. should notice that it is a Western nation. After this analysis, the UCUC should vow to take the appropriate side in this conflict. These basic culturist steps should be taken throughout Western schools.

The multicultural agenda is not neutral. It denigrates the West just by asserting that we have no core culture to promulgate in Western lands. The UCUC’s referendum took it as axiomatic that no one is neutral. Even in scholarship that tries to be rigorous, people take sides on important issues. Geopolitically, there are no neutral observers. Our pretending to be neutral in the Middle East, while the other side is one hundred percent pro- Palestine, puts us at a disadvantage. All nation’s schools teach the glories of their nation and try to inculcate devotion to the values the majority culture holds dear. U.K. universities advocating for the Muslim side is abnormal and dangerous.

The West values freedom of speech. In universities that means, if they take no money from the government, they should be able to be biased. Being educated means absorbing a point of view based on a body of knowledge. If a university wants to announce that it is multicultural and does not want to teach any particular values are preferable to any other, they are only going to “celebrate diversity,” I would not waste money there. If a private university wants to be pro-Palestinian and teach social justice for 3rd world grievances, they have that right, but I would stay away. It might be popular to start universities, like Hillsdale College, who are openly pro-Western civilization. Western governments should encourage this trend and, at very least, recognize the rights of private universities on Western soil to take a pro-Western stance.

Public universities work for us. We, again, do not want to stifle debate. But public universities get paid for by Western citizens via Western governments. Academics who work for public universities do not work for third world or Islamic states. To understand this point we must understand the culturist view. The West has a very long and rich tradition which goes back to Athens and Jerusalem. We have many heroes. Democracies are fragile and new. Universities, again, in all nations teach the heritage of their people to their future leaders. It is the function of Western universities to help to perpetuate our fragile vision of Western values and democracies. Turning our institutions against us in the name of multiculturalism or a “neutral” and “international” vision of “social justice” endangers us. If our universities educate Western people to resent our nation, where will their understanding and appreciation come from? Public universities should fulfill their normal public function and teach to sustain our civilization’s majority culture and its values.

In Western university curriculum, of course, as we are not a top-down theocratic state, controversial views will be aired. Teaching about George Washington’s glories does not mean you do not investigate his failings. The Vietnam War, undertaken with noble intentions, remains controversial. America’s racism did not end with the 640,000 killed in the Civil War and the Reconstruction efforts that followed. Each of these examples can be used to frame questions that lead you to critical thought and make you a better citizen. Having an educated populace that can critically appraise issues is vital. No sane Western culturist would advocate a curriculum of propaganda. But too often our schools do dish up one sided propaganda. The U.K. vote recognizes only one side as right. It shows overwhelming sympathy with the non-Western side. It does not ask, as all critical appraisals of our past should, “What lessons can we take away that will help the West?” At the end of the day, after our critical look, we must affirm that we want democracy and rights, not Islam and theocracy, to prevail in Western nations.

Public k – 12 schools should be the place where teaching about Western heritage and values should be the least problematic. The young are impressionable. Public schools, in all nations, exist to socialize the young into the majority culture. Multiculturalism is destructive of these ends. It says we have no special values to which to adhere. It undermines our sense of duty and ethics when it asserts that no progress has ever happened. It, in fact, lies when it does not teach about the horrors of honor killings, theocracy and mass human sacrifice in other nations and their history. Our young people need to know that our democracy and rights culminated from a long struggle against the usual state of barbarism. They need to know that the dark ages happened, we are in competition, and none of our freedoms can be taken for granted.

In the U.K. I hope that leftists multicultural academics wake up to the fact that all that they cherish, from women’s rights to gay rights, will be washed away if Islamic terrorism destabilizes us. I hope that more universities join Hillsdale College in overtly defining themselves places that teach about Western civilization. I hope that our government drops its stance of neutrality concerning the employment of anti-Western professors. And I urge all of us to stop the multicultural madness that has manifested in Islamic themed public schools in Brooklyn and Minnesota. Our schools need to join other nations’ school in discriminating for the majority culture and traditions. We need to adopt culturist public school policies now.

To get active in fighting the Islamic public schools in Brooklyn go to http://stopthemadrassa.wordpress.com/

Those who are in the U.K. can help reverse academic discrimination against Israeli's at http://www.stoptheboycott.org/

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Hillary, Feminists and Culturists

The Educating Women Conference’s keynote speaker, Jane Roland Martin, chose Hillary Clinton and misogyny as her main topic. When a man is aggressive, she told us, people admire the trait. When a woman is aggressive she gets called the “b word.” This puts Clinton in a lose – lose situation. If she comes off as feminine, people will say she is not tough enough to be President. If she tells people she is tough, they consider her outside the pale of normal female behavior, an aberration, or even "a monster" Martin declared.

During the Q and A Martin got asked about Margaret Thatcher. Her reply was culturist on two fronts. First of all, she said, I do not know much and am not talking about other nations. Secondly, that nation has a tradition of strong women leaders going back to the first Queen Elizabeth. Yet even Elizabeth had to consider gender. The "Virgin Queen" put on armor to rally her troops against the Spanish. In her speech to the military she said, “I have but the body of a weak and feeble woman; but I have the heart of a king.” But, in a culturist move, Martin noted that Hillary is only running in America and so was only speaking about American culture.

The woman I spoke about at the conference, Frances Kellor, has been labeled an invert. That was the official term of the early 20th century for people who assumed the gender characteristics of the opposite sex. In my work I tried to show Kellor taking an increasingly male view of immigrants. The academic challenge question here is how to connect gender and policy. The feminist question is whether you can say men are like “x” and women are like “y” without being sexist. When we say Kellor acted like a man, we implicitly accept that there are male behaviors and female behaviors.

The conference was held in Chicago’s famous Hull House. This turn of the 20th century service center’s head was Jane Addams. Addams, likely the most famous woman of her times, was a gender essentialist. She believed women different and superior. She lost her fame when she consistently berated World War One as a man’s game. People thought her pacifism traitorous and unreasonable. If we say women are naturally mothering and nurturing, they may be reasonably disqualified for being President in a world of countries run by men. Our other alternative is to declare that there are no gender differences. But that does not seem right either.

Do men and women differ? Traditionally America has had a lot of tough women. The Puritan settlers, frontier sojourners and the film noir vixens were as tough as any man alive. Biology, sorry feminists, puts women and infants together. That does not mean, however, that women cannot be tough. Feminist thought is one of the great glories of the West. Traditional cultures treat women like beasts of burden. So while I will say long live gender differences, I will not say women cannot be tough or President. But to qualify women, like everyone else, have to be able to take the heat and stay in the kitchen. Thatcher was called the “Iron Lady.” It would be a loss for all of us, men and women alike, if women such as Thatcher could not run for office or lead a nation.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Kobe is a Genius!!!

Culturists need to celebrate greatness in Western civilization. Opera and film recommendations have appeared on this blog. Yesterday, in the first game of the Western finals, Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers merited his second appearance on this blog. Kobe is simply the greatest virtuoso playing basketball in a very long time. Half way through the third quarter the Lakers were down by 20. They won by 4. What happened? Kobe displayed his genius.

This was no accident. Kobe only took about three shots in the first half. This is the basketball equivalent of letting two strikes go by because you only need one pitch to hit it out of the park. Kobe's game said, "I only need a quarter and a half to beat you." It is the equivalent of the rope-a-dope. Kobe stood up against the ropes and said, "Go ahead and hit my for 11 rounds. I won't hit you. Let's see what you've got." Kobe is in a class with Ali.

The close score was not a coincidence. Kobe has been at this so long that he can time comebacks. And the timing in this one was amazing. First lead coming with some 2:42 left to go in the fourth. Amazing. It was the ultimate in cool. But, it really is a science.

A beautiful attribute that comes from Kobe's ingenious control and calm is his ball sharing. A few years ago, down the stretch Kobe might have tried to take over and not passed the ball. Now down the stretch Kobe is distributing just enough to take the defense off of him. He can let Sasha miss a distant three or let Turiaf fumble a pass. He knows how much we're going to win by and that dishing out the ball keeps players honest. Kobe controls the entire other team with his distributing.

Never before in the history of basketball, that I know of, has a player so obviously and blatantly shaved it just right. In Hollywood he is the King of Drama and the King of Cool. You think that his not shooting in the first half was a coincidence? You think the final score being so close was a coincidence? THINK AGAIN.

Kobe Bean Bryant is a genius. Beyond MVP, he is at a whole other level than everyone else in the league! For those of you not watching, Kobe Bean Bryant's current play is easily at the same level of greatness of Ali. He plays with the grace and assuredness of the greatest artists of all times. When Kobe plays we witness great moments in American sports history, a role model of greatness for all of us. We should take culturist pride in his achievements. But, beyond that, to watch him is to enjoy seeing genius in action.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

China's Terrible Earthquake

My friend Laura sent around a call for donations to aid those killed, injured and / or left homeless by the recent earthquakes in China. This mass mailing went out to a lot of people, but as I have known Laura for quite some time I imagined what I might say to her if we had a conversation concerning her relief efforts. Of course, sentimentally, my heart goes out to all the victims. But, my imagined conversation led to callous realities. For the sake of our nation and my friendship with Laura, I’m just going to ignore her e-mail.

As caring and supposedly wealthy people, Americans often want to give and are always expected to provide disaster relief. This giving spirit reflects a belief in a human community. Yet, as culturists know, that community is often more illusory than real. When America stepped into stop violence in Rwanda, Somalia and the Balkans we backed and protected some unsavory people in the middle of torrential violence. In such cases, someone will always resent your helping the other side. We are yet to see gratitude for our supporting Muslims in the Balkans. When it comes to interfering in nations we know little about, my culturist instincts always lean towards caution.

In the case of major nations, how much of a sense of community is there? When Katrina happened, Japan sent us $500,000. That is not enough money to buy one condominium in New York. While it goes further in New Orleans, it verges on being an insult. How much money did China give us? If we were broke and had a disaster, how much relief would China send us? We already have a major trade deficit with them and in normal times they do not seem to mind playing hardball to increase that deficit. As it is, we send them a lot of money and they send much less back. They seem to think our nations are competitors. The trade deficit seems to confirm this impression.

Diversity exists. Myanmar refused to distribute the aid sent to them. The North Korean government regularly takes U.N. aid, puts it in bags labeled “North Korean government,” skims the bulk off for their military, and pretends like it is providing the relief. Whatever China spends in aiding its poor, they will not spend propping up the murderous regime in Sudan nor fueling their incredible and secretive military growth. As per my Western bias, I feel more akin to nations that promote democracy and rights and do not back terrorists. Even if it were eventually getting to the people, giving free money to China and Myanmar seems problematic.

Culturism does not put stock in abstractions. Rights, for example, only come from countries that believe in them and can afford them, not from a metaphysical reality. Even if we did consider all peoples one and looked past nationality and culture, we would still have limited resources to spend on the world. We currently have tremendous debts and deficits. Our very own infrastructure is old and collapsing. We have many homeless. And neither Katrina nor the World Trade Center has been rebuilt. While it might feel good to Americans to imagine the world shuttles money back and forth whenever there is a disaster, there are limits and one must prioritize.

I send those in China and Myanmar my condolences. I truly hope that their governments spend money on their people. I’ll be watching their governments and judging them accordingly. Laura might ask if I would not want other nations to give me money if I needed it. Certainly I will take all the free money I can get. But, in reality, the lion's share of help I'd get would come from my own government and my personal resources. And the money our government spends to help in disasters comes out of real American’s incomes. I do not resent that other nations do not take in refugees willingly or send other nations much money in times of need. I think they have their priorities straight. I truly hope China and Myanmar get relief to their people quickly.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Muslims Believe in Islam

Today I attended a counter protest to a nakbah rally near the U.N. building in New York. Nakbah means “Palestinian Catastrophe” and refers to the creation of Israel. Apparently, other Muslim nations also considered the creation of Israel a disaster. All of Israel’s Muslim neighbors attacked Israel on its birthday. They lost. Israel exists. But I did not attend the counter demonstration because I think it obvious that Israel is right and the Palestinians are wrong. Culturism accepts the possibility that the Palestinians believe they are right. Muslims believe the Koran represents perfect morality.

Though we cannot say who is right, we do have a dog in this fight. With small lulls, the West has been fighting Muslims for 1400 years. The Muslims religion started in 622 ad and quickly took over the Middle East, North Africa and attempted to take Europe. The Crusades were aimed at allowing Christians to visit areas the Muslims had conquered. September 11, 2001 echoed the battle of Vienna on September 11th, 1683. In that battle the Europeans halted Muslim expansion into Europe via the East. This mirrored the Western front where the Muslims held Spain from 711 until 1492.

Upon reaching the rally I met up with the beautiful and inspiring Pamela Geller of Atlas Shrugs. She does not know it, but we disagree philosophically. She considers Islam savage and backwards. In her reporting she considered it ironic that women would parade for Islam. Culturists acknowledge that Muslims believe Islam is right; they are willing to die for their side because they believe in it. We, of course, believe in our side, but no international judge or destiny can prove who is right. If our truths were obvious, they would have been converted a long time ago. Muslims believe in their values as firmly as we believe in ours.

If culturism had a weakness it would occur in cases of genocide and hatred. One Jewish man at the rally was greeted with chants of “Jew! Jew! Jew! I hope you die today!” We who study know of the concept of “dhimmitude” whereby Jews and other non-believers receive humiliating second class citizenship under Islamic rule. In response, first of all, culturism respects majority culture’s rights. That means Muslim states have no right to attack other states such as Israel. Secondly, where such dhimmitude gets implemented, the majority consider it right. They can enforce it via power. Culturism is very realistic. Morality only exists in practice where it can be enforced.

Strategically we are better off understanding those who believe in Islam hold fundamentally different values, are willing to die and kill for them, and will show no mercy once in power. The United Nations will not rescue the West. Their pretended stance of moral neutrality does not exist. The nations there in have a point of view that has nothing to do with impartial declarations of justice. Many in the U.N. sympathize with terrorists and would cheer the day any Western nation, including Israel, fell. When we put our faith in “international,” and “humanitarian” ideals we deceive ourselves. Peace and security can only come about when we realize we are different and respect each others right to define and protect our respective ways of life. We should not assume fundamental agreement. Those in the United Nations take sides and we must too.

Culturism hates multiculturalist belief that we all share fundamental values and are all on the same side. Multiculturalist thinking allowed the Muslims to bring school children in from public school Madrassas to scream hatred towards Western nations and Jews. Multiculturalism fails to realize that Islamic values are diametrically opposed to Western values. They do not agree with Western notions of democracy, feminism, freedom of speech and separation of church and state. U.N. votes show this to be true. Terrorism in Europe over cartoons confirms our differences. Marches against Israel’s existence confirm we have diametrically opposed agendas. The United States and other Western nations need to realize there are irreconcilable sides and Muslims believe theirs is right.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Nice to Meet Nice People

Some times you meet really nice people. This weekend I spent time with spectacular people. The couple who hosted work as academics at various universities. They, an international couple, she British and he American, live on a wide and manicured farm. And there this couple entertains so hospitably. The farm nor the rustic atmosphere made the evening memorable. The food neither, though it had all the incomparable attributes you associate with home cooked carefulness. These senior hosts made everything; while others, the setting and fare added greatly.

We discussed the friendliness of Muslims to England in the 19th century. And Al, the father of the house, who boxed as a youth, needed a book for statistics of Indian demographics from the correct years. I never doubted that he knew exactly where the book with that information sat. And mother’s questioning, direct and personal questioning. Prim and yet invasive relentlessly, the first night she interrogated author Glenn about his religion book especially and, later, my work, books her husband and even she had written and a book their son, and my friend, Adam plans to write: International high grade of people. Lots of wine. Fun.

I play music with their son Adam. He makes films and presently occupies himself by getting ready to move to Brazil. He actually, believe it or not, has an operation on his thyroid on Monday WISH HIM LUCK!! And for his mother’s Mother’s day weekend we played lots of music above the barn. Me, Richard, Adam, Tim, Justin, Jeff and Glenn took turns before the day and night played out. But one moment that outshone them all was the arrival in the music space of Adam’s parents. They both danced and even sang a little bit.

At that very moment their grandchildren also played music in the room over the barn. Two on drums and little Ester singing “eight days a week” over and over. A little ham! And their parents who brought them were also just nice folks And it is a real joy to hang around with family such as that because they make one believe. They make one believe in what niceness our cultures can produce and appreciate women to whom to say, Happy Mother’s Day!! It’s refreshing to meet such nice people.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Kobe for Culturist MVP!!!

Kobe Bryant deserves the MVP award from the National Basketball Association for numerous culturist reasons. Before writing on this, however, I must confess that I am a HUGE and PROUD lifelong fan of the Los Angeles Lakers. Culturism does not believe in objectivity. Be warned that I have long loved, rooted for and admired Kobe Bryant. That said, there are legitimate and important culturist reasons to celebrate Kobe's being awarded the MVP award.

Kobe's work ethic provides a culturist standard towards which we should all aspire. Kobe answers nearly all questions on bad nights, "We have to work harder, we have failings that we need to address and we have not reached our potential or personal goals." More impressively, Kobe answers questions on winning nights the same way. Kobe's poor personal relationship with Shaq O'Neil led to the dismembering of their three-time championship team. They were winning, but Kobe did not respect Shaq's poor work ethic. If more people consistently valued the work ethic, as Kobe does, we'd be a better nation.

People have criticized Kobe for being egotistical. This comes from an expectation of entertainment and clown like behavior in celebrities. Kobe smiles often, but he does not show up at parties and provide scandal. His public persona and answers to questions reflect seriousness. He has been accused of not helping his teammates and hogging the ball. His decisions all have to do with winning. Would you call Michelangelo conceited for not making small talk with the Pope? Was it selfish of Einstein to not teach much? Kobe has had harsh words and criticized teammates who do not work. This reflects his taking his craft seriously. Those who want a populist should not watch competitive endeavors. To call Kobe ungenerous is to misunderstand greatness.

The League has ignored Kobe due to the rape charges in Colorado. Kobe deserves some blame for this. But, our sick society deserves more. The woman who accused him had semen from several men in her underwear when the police came. She sought fame or infamy and did not mind the difference. We know where she got these values. Kobe was found not guilty. Since that time, four years ago, Kobe has been - as far as we can tell - totally dedicated to his wife, children and craft. How many NBA players do interviews with their children on their laps? Very few people daily display the devotion and dedication that Kobe displays. I am glad the league cares about morality. Yet they are long overdue in recognizing that Kobe has long been a role model for hard work, dedication, respect and good morals.

Kobe received a lot of flack for his anger at management and made remarks about leaving the Lakers early this year. As a Lakers fan I hated this and it scared me. But Kobe has only a limited number of years to dominate and he is competitive. Management was surrounding him with players who were not of his caliber. Kobe is not a socialist. His dedication is to excellence and winning. His pronouncements likely led to management getting off their duffs and trading aggressively. His complaining reflected real reasons for worry and showed leadership that has likely made our playoff success possible. Quietude in the face of mediocrity is not a virtue.

Kobe Bryant deserves the MVP award. All who honor achievement, dedication, the work ethic, excellence and competitiveness should congratulate him. Sports provide one of the only mass media areas where we actually still have the joy of seeing people dedicated to craft. Basketball has teams that are small enough to see the results of seriousness in individuals pay off. Actor's success comes via agents, lucky breaks and despite themselves. Interviews with important people do not discuss the work they put in to get that way. When we celebrate Kobe Bryant we celebrate the ethics that have made America a top competitor on the world stage. Kobe Bryant has earned the MVP award. He deserves a great culturist congratulation from all of America. Congratulations to Kobe Bryant, the 2007 - 2008 NBA MVP!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Multiculturalists Gone Wild

Buddha is Hiding by Aihwa Ong shows the perils of multicultural policy compounded by multiculturalist thought. Ong's book follows the lives of 50,000 Cambodian refugees we accepted in the 1970s. During the reign of Pol Pot in Cambodia approximately one third of the population was killed. Many of those given asylum ended up congregating in Northern California.

Ong considers our welfare system complicit in "ethnic cleansing, in the sense of removing the features of the immigrants' supposedly primitive cultures that are socially determined to be undesirable." Ong recoils at calling any culture primitive. And, I agree that if Cambodians live in Cambodia, we have no right to judge them. But once they move into America we must judge them by American standards. And from our point of view, Cambodian culture has some primitive features.

"In Cambodia," one person Ong interviews says, "a man might have different wives or mistresses, whereas if his wife had a lover, he could go to court and get permission to kill both of them." Of course, Ong tells us, this is not true. Multiculturalists only see positive diversity and are blind to the rest. As she cannot avoid admitting some sexism in Cambodian culture she accepts testimony that, "if we [women] used harsh words with them [husbands] they had a right to strike us. In Cambodia, men were more valued than women." It is odd to have the possibility of extremely negative cultural traits dismissed in a chapter that depicts the Cambodian genocide and the rape that often accompanied it.

Ong celebrates one "quintessentially American" in which a fourteen year old Cambodian runs away to live with her Salvadorian boyfriend. He is nearly 21 and so this could be statuatory rape. Instead, they use a "cultural defense" to escape punishments. "With the the flood of mullticultural immigrants" this has been used to stop prosecution of "Hmong kidnap-marriage practices (Borat is real) Japanese rituals of parent-child suicide and even wives killed by husband by husbands." Well, at any rate, the fourteen year old Cambodian has the child and they live happily ever after. Problems disappear if you accept indigenous cultures.

The best part of this book comes when the multiculturalists attack the feminists. The "family reformer" social workers are charged with class dominance. They come in and stop men from beating their women and thus manipulate the families. They stop men from beating their daughters and thus destroy Cambodian culture. The arrogance of feminists get berated through and through. They do not respect that in "oral cultures" people change their testimony and that is okay. Ong has to thus defend a father beating his daughter with an electric chord until it broke. Essentially, one cannot have both multiculturalism and feminism. Ong chooses multiculturalism.

Ong does a great job of showing us what multiculturalism offers. It paints all of our institutions as evil. One funny result is that this includes our welfare system. Seventy-seven percent of Laotioans and Cambodians are on welfare. And, Ong and I agree, this system infantilizes them and breaks up their families. The social workers stop the spousal abuse and ferocious protection of daughters. But whereas culturist see stopping such behaviors, in America, as laudible, multiculturalists must celebrate diversity. Ong has given us a stark portrait of what is at stake.