Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Nial Ferguson's Article.

Back in the early 80's, before the AID's virus was discovered, doctors became slowly aware that something was afoot by the fact that opportunistic diseases, which were previously rare, were being diagnosed with an increasing frequency. For those of you who aren't familiar with medicine, opportunistic diseases are diseases which only affect the body when it's immunity is impaired. In essence what the doctors soon realised was that the increasing frequency of oppurtinistic disease was a sign of something more serious going on and commenced their search for the AID's virus. In a few years the causative agent was discovered.

Now the important point of this little vignette is to recognise that the increasing frequency and severity of previously trivial problems is to the astute eye a sign of a more significant systemic malaise. Focusing solely on the opportunistic disease without asking why it's cropping up with increasing frequency is a sure way to miss the underlying systemic pathogen.  It's unfortunate, for society, that the best and brightest usually end up in Medicine and do not major in History. Therefore the West gets good medicine and bad History.

Which leads me to Niall Ferguson. I like him. I like him a lot. I would quite recommend his book--with caveats--The Great Degeneration.  However unlike Correlli Barnett, who is a superb historian, he just doesn't make the grade.

Ferguson penned this article, in response to the Paris Attacks, which seems to be have been syndicated to various papers.   These two paragraphs caught my eye:
But they cannot stream northwards and westwards without some of that political malaise coming with them. As Gibbon saw, convinced monotheists pose a grave threat to a secular empire[ED]

It is doubtless true to say that the overwhelming majority of Muslims in Europe are not violent. But it is also true the majority hold views not easily reconciled with the principles of our liberal democracies, including our novel notions about sexual equality and tolerance not merely of religious diversity but of nearly all sexual proclivities. And it is thus remarkably easy for a violent minority to acquire their weapons and prepare their assaults on civilisation within these avowedly peace-loving ­communities.


Here's a few interesting speculations.. How many terrorist attacks occurred in monotheistic France in 1850?  Why is it easy for a violent minority to attack "avowedly peaceloving communities". Why is monotheism a problem for secular societies? It's not like the Anglicans are blowing things up and killing people.

Ferguson paints his response in the the context of Peter Heather's book, The Fall of the Roman Empire, which argues that foreign immigration and overextension presaged Rome's downfall, however this argument misses the point. Why didn't Rome choose to shrink into easily manageable borders and expel the immigrants. It's not like the Romans couldn't be ruthless.

Gibbons analysis is still the best, it was the moral corruption of Rome which rendered it impotent to new challenges. And just as in modern France, the rot was the inside. Foreign hordes only become an issue when either they invade by force or you let them in.

France's fundamental problem is a moral one. It's anti-islamophobic ideal fails to take into account, that Islam is hostile to secularism by its very nature. Good Muslims, who eschew violence, are still going to vote in a way that reflects Muslim ideals, and will try to achieve in the long run, peacefully, what Isis is trying to do by violent overthrow. What differentiates the two groups is the sense of urgency, not aim. (Though there is a wide variety of opinion in Islam as to what constitutes its true Nature. Not every Muslim is a ISIL fanatic.) A culture that that values non-judgementalism, even towards cultures that are hostile to THAT notion is one that will be soon eaten by the latter. Despite all the military hardware in the world.

8 comments:

Hoyos said...

Monotheists? From Amish country insurgency, to Methodist organized crime in cities across the land, a dark shadow is rising...

Willful blindness is amazing. The US spent millions figuring out why the terrorists hate us because the true reason isn't acceptable. You have to tease out some deep psychological connection between just general monotheism and terrorism, because the chaps with the AK-47s who all have the same first name aren't fitting your paradigm. Saying monotheism (again, just general monotheism) is the problem is athletically dishonest.

"But the crusades!" Stow it. Muslims sacked Rome and invaded northern France centuries before the first Crusade got going. "But Christianity was spread by the sword!" Again, stow it, it really wasn't. There was no blade at Constantines throat when he converted, and the Venerable Bede gave us a real picture of how a nation becomes Christian (slowly, with great difficulty, and with frequent bouts of your neighbours murdering you).

If monotheism is the enemy; we know what's next and it surely won't be closer surveillance of the Muslim community.

Robert What? said...

You mention antithetical to all sexual proclivities. It is antithetical to individual liberty, period. As for "women's rights" I have mixed feelings. We now see what a disaster for the West universal suffrage has been.

The Social Pathologist said...

@Hoyos

Yep, every Muslim terrorist attack seems to be a pretext to further monitor and police "radical religious types".

@Robert

I think there is this idea, even amongst some of the alt-right types, that as long as we get rid of the darkies and the yids everything will be all right. They want to reset the world to a White late 60's Utopia where it's liberalism for white people only.

David Foster said...

""But the crusades!" Stow it. Muslims sacked Rome and invaded northern France centuries before the first Crusade got going. "But Christianity was spread by the sword!" Again, stow it, it really wasn't. There was no blade at Constantines throat when he converted, and the Venerable Bede gave us a real picture of how a nation becomes Christian (slowly, with great difficulty, and with frequent bouts of your neighbours murdering you)."

There certainly *were* cases of Christianity being spread by the sword (see for example Charlemagne), but it seems much less of a consistent thread than is the case with Islam.

Hoyos said...

@David Foster

Well, sure. The only point I would make is that as a Germanic tribal chieftain the odds of him being peaceful but for Christianity isn't very high. Still a fair point though.

MK said...

France's fundamental problem is a moral one. It's anti-islamophobic ideal fails to take into account, that Islam is hostile to secularism by its very nature.

France's fundamental problem? Not breeding at replacement. It's the exact problem that happened to Rome. It's really not that hard.

Humans compete with each other over land and resources. A tribe either pushes their own boundaries outward, or they get pushed on by others. France is the latter.

The concept of the nation-state is an abstraction that can last a few hundred years before it changes into something else. It is the people on the ground, marrying and having children, inbreeding and moving in, that matters. Everything else is just window-dressing.

Look at the changes in recent French history. The different racial groups in and out. The Revolution. WWI. WWII. France is over and has been toast for some time. The Muslims are merely the closest tribe with excess population. The French won't be missed. They lost the will to live.

Anonymous said...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_Revolution_of_1848

maybe not *terrorism,* but not exactly peace and political stability.

Mark Citadel said...

"As Gibbon saw, convinced monotheists pose a grave threat to a secular empire"

Since it is intrinsically degenerative, and monotheism adaptive, of course they will pose a grave threat, even in an internally degenerative state. The question is, can homegrown monotheists loyal to their heritage countermand this foreign danger by developing themselves into a threat once more. It seems to be going that way in Russia at least.