Sir Roger Scruton Just Won a Landmark Victory in the Culture Wars

roger
Ian Gavan/Getty

Conservative philosopher Sir Roger Scruton has won a spectacular victory against the New Statesman – the left-wing magazine which interviewed him and then tried to smear him as a racist, bigot and anti-Semite. The smear — a result of selective editing of the interview and malicious tweeting by the magazine’s deputy editor George Eaton — cost Scruton his job on a government advisory body. Among those who initially condemned Scruton for his alleged remarks were various Conservatives, including MPs Tom Tugendhat, Johnny Mercer and James Brokenshire, and former Chancellor of the Exchequer turned freesheet editor George Osborne.

Read the rest on Breitbart.

Global Warming ‘Pause’ Deniers: We Name the Guilty Scumbags

You may say that I’m using a sledgehammer to crack a nest of cockroaches; that rather than crow in victory one should be magnanimous in order to prove oneself a better man than they are, Gunga Din.

I disagree. I want blood. Entrails too, please. Those of us who have spent years of our lives being mocked and traduced and demeaned by these verminous charlatans deserve our pound of flesh, not only for the sake of sweet vengeance, but also for the greater cause of scientific honesty and journalistic integrity.

This is no more than I would expect were the positions ever reversed.

Suppose, for example, that I had written in the Spectator an article on global warming and it subsequently emerged that it was scientifically illiterate, that I’d dragged the name of a good journalist (who had got his facts right) through the mud, and that I’d brought the title into disrepute by adopting a tone of lofty, scornful, apparent expertise entirely unjustified by reality: well here’s what I’d expect to have to do….

Apologise. First to the journalist I’d unfairly, perhaps libellously, maligned; next to the magazine’s editor for having been such a dogmatically wrongheaded prick; finally to the readers for having abused their faith in my due diligence and my supposedly superior knowledge. Indeed, I think if I’d ever got an article as comprehensively wrong as the one I’m about to mention, I’d feel so shit I think I might seriously consider never broaching the topic again.

So now, without further ado, let me introduce MARK LYNAS – activist, prominent environmental campaigner, and author of a very angry, high-handed 2008 article in the New Statesman (the left’s answer to the Spectator) called Has Global Warming Really Stopped?. This was in response to a piece by David Whitehouse which – quite controversially for the time – tentatively noted that the temperature record showed that there had been no “global warming” for several years and that this fact might, at some stage, become a significant issue.

Lynas was having none of it. His response brimmed with righteous indignation.

Read the rest at Breitbart.

The World Needs Caroline Criado-Perez’s Airheaded Feminism like a Fish Needs a Bicycle

Did you know that domestic abuse is the most common cause of morbidity [sickness] in women aged 19 to 44, more than war, cancer or motor vehicle accidents?

No, very probably, you didn’t because it’s just not true. Rather it’s one of those urban myths which has been doing the rounds on the internet since the 1990s and which has been exploded on numerous occasions, including by the BBC Radio 4 statistics show More Or Less as long ago as 2009.

But obviously that wasn’t going to stop feminist campaigner Caroline Criado-Perez employing it to prove her ‘point’ in a recent article for the New Statesman. The piece – called something like “The Moon is a Rapist” or “If trees are a phallocentric symbol of male aggression (and they are) why don’t we kill all the forests now?” – purported to tell us about an “epidemic” of sexual violence which has apparently gone unreported in the phallocentric, sexist media.

Problem is, apart from the fabricated and antique statisticoid, there wasn’t exactly a superabundance of factual evidence to support Ms Criado-Perez’s thesis.

Happily a sharp-eyed masochist with an appetite for reading Ms Criado-Perez’s article spotted the error. And when the New Statesman showed reluctance to remove the offending inaccuracy, he complained to the Press Complaints Commission. Two weeks after the article was published, the New Statesman relented and removed the paragraph.

Read more at Breitbart London

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Dan Hannan Is Not a Racist

The deadly attack gerbils of the liberal-left have had a go at Dan Hannan.

The Daily Mirror, NuLav’s comically useless online propaganda outlet Labour List, and a sweet-looking boy named James Mcintyre who writes for the New Statesman, have all seized excitedly on some thoughtful, unexceptionable remarks Dan made about Obama’s “exotic” background.

Here’s what Dan said in his blog:

“Barack Obama has an exotic background, and it would be odd if some people weren’t unsettled by it. During the campaign, he made a virtue of his unusual upbringing. He was at once from the middle of the country (Kansas) and from its remotest edge (Hawaii). He was both black and white. He was a Protestant brought up among Muslims. He seemed to have family on every continent. Like St Paul, he made a virtue of being all things to all men.”

“On one level, the strategy worked brilliantly. But it could hardly fail to leave a chunk of people feeling that Obama wasn’t exactly a regular guy.”

And here, roughly, is how Mcintyre and his chums chose to translate it:

“My name is Dan Hannan. I wear a tall, pointy white hat with eyeholes cut into it. Our Enoch was right. Send ‘em all back to where they came from. No, wait, better than that: string ‘em all up. And if you think I’m the only fellow in the Tory party who thinks this way you’ve got another think coming. We’re racists, the lot of us. And this my friends is why you should not vote Conservative at the next election but vote instead for the supremely competent and utterly sane Gordon Brown.”

Now I have at least two main objections to this.

First, though it’s true that Dan Hannan holds culpable, deeply objectionable, utterly wrongheaded views about Obama, they have nothing to do with the man’s race or exoticism. They’re to do with the fact – as he brazenly admits – that he likes and admires the guy and supported his presidential candidacy.

But what I loathe and detest far more is what it tells us about New Labour and what they have done to the level political debate. As pretty much anyone with even half a brain cell now realises, Britain is almost irredeemably b***ered after 12 years under Blair and Brown. In this week’s Spectator, Trevor Kavanagh racks his brain and finally comes up with “peace” in Northern Ireland and the minimum wage as examples of two of New Labour’s achievements. Personally, I wouldn’t even give them those. They have been a total and unmitigated disaster from beginning to end.

How, though, did they get away with it for so long? Largely, I’d argue, by manipulating the media – and by extension – the voters more cleverly than the Tories did. New Labour would lie, distort, tweak, smear, exaggerate, spin, announce, re-announce, re-re-announce or anything else that was necessary to ensure that they came across as the party that could do useful things and which cared, while the Tories were the party of reaction, snobbery, racism and cuts.

This feeble and desperate attempt to smear Hannan and, by association, Cameron’s Tories is merely a continuation of the same old methods they’ve been using for the last twelve years. Two or three years ago, it might just have worked. Today, now that we’ve all wised up to their methods, it just comes across as wearisomely predictable and a bit sad – the death throes of a party which knows it’s a busted flush and knows that in the total absence of things to say in its own favour its last remaining hope is to try to slag the opposition.

I understand this. You understand it. But here’s the part that makes me worried and angry: I’m not sure that Cameron’s Tories yet do.

Even now, far too much of their policy-decision-making appears to be based not so much on doing the right thing as on avoiding trouble. The 50p upper rate tax. The ring-fencing of spending on the NHS. These are positions not of a party of principle, but a party whose inner circle reads silly articles like the ones above, and STILL actually takes them seriously.

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