Theology of technical rationality

theology-technical-rationality

‘It’s bloody obvious,’ is my frequent, exasperated response to my long-time interlocutor, critic, sometime editor, second harshest critic, and good friend, Dorothy Uckling. Her counsel? ‘You should explain what you mean when you say… because people won’t understand you.’

The critique about not explaining myself more clearly happens less frequently than it did, but with a still somewhat predictable regularity that tells me I need to pause, sometimes, and consider whether I have assumed the wrong audience, and whether I need to do something about that.

This is likely a problem for any writer. You have to think yourself into your subject, but when you then write about it, you may leave behind more casual observers who did not come along for that immersion, and who may not agree with your conclusions. One of the obstacles working against that apparently simple writerly task is an orthodox tradition in the academy, and the public province of readership, of frowning on self-referential pointers about such journeys, and the unwritten prohibition on any self-assertiveness. ‘Who do you think you are to say such a thing?’
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Harden up, namby pambies!

The force is strong with irony this silly season!

 

namby-pambies

 

Wall Street Journal ‘associate opinion editor’ Bari Weiss’s ‘interview’ with senior avant garde feminist icon Camille Paglia was delicious evidence of this disturbance in Jedi mental health.

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Election 2013 Notebook: January

Tony-Abbott

27 January 2013

Abbott courts Westies

Coalition leader Tony Abbott’s (Lib, Warringah, NSW) contrived mini campaign launch in western Sydney’s Auburn was a pretty transparent grab at legitimacy for his party in marginal electorates with large ethnic minorities.

The Coalition has traditionally been easy to paint as anti-migrant and anti-special interests while Labor attempted to claim a monopoly on a demonstrably failed social justice agenda we still pay lip service to as Multiculturalism, which has actually served more to ghettoise ethnic minorities than to integrate them.

The proof of that pudding for realpolitik might well be some damning recent findings about a rise in firearm offences, driven by young men of ethnic descent, precisely in Sydney’s western suburbs.[1]  Picking Auburn as the campaign venue was probably not entirely coincidental, given that it has the highest drive-by shooting rate in the city.[2]

Labor’s other claim to a social justice monopoly is its increasingly farcical anti-discrimination agenda, which attempts to impose a kind of sterile political correctness about ethnicity and gender that is lampooned even by Australia’s ethnic TV network, SBS, in comedy shows like Housos, The Wog Boy, and Fat Pizza [edit: and which wrongfooted the Prime Minister’s own consort in an embarrassing display of its overreaching ambit to create a politically correct culture of victimhood and paranoia (see below)].

Labor should have seen Abbott’s opportunism in his native Sydney coming from a long way off.  In fact, it might be said Abbott really had no choice but to exploit Labor’s pathetic ideological weakness and policy vacuum in this area.  The man who might have staved this off, Bob Carr, is too busy being courted by African nations since becoming a supremo of the UN Security Council, and just a little bit more concerned with the lofty affairs of the world than parochial politics in Australia, let alone his own native Sydney.  A telling reflection of the ALP’s lack of focus on NSW, which could turn into a decisive electoral weakness.

However, that’s where the good news for Abbott ends.

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Political Correctness

Why it’s a scourge of liberty and thought that must be vigorously opposed.

Perhaps the most execrable social and cultural blight on Western civilization since the anti-communist hysteria of the 1950s, political correctness, is the paradoxical triumph of Stalinism in the West, and the fascist impetus of corporatists carried forward into the 21st century.

Political correctness: the triumph of Stalinism in the West.
Political correctness: the triumph of Stalinism in the West.

To be clear about what I mean when I use the terminology, let me identify political correctness as the intended product of a bien pensant leftist agenda of levelling all supposed indicators of inequality in language by coercive and self-perpetuating censorship of all words that anyone might regard as prejudiced about gender, class, race, culture, sexual orientation, physical abilities, age, and religious/political beliefs. The accent here is not on a reasoned case for excluding pejoratives from language, but on excluding all language that might possibly lead to someone claiming they have been offended.

Underlying this insane project is the equally insane idea that there should or could be such a thing as total equality of all people under all circumstances. Such a state of affairs in practice would mean a completely equal distribution of all resources, a diffusion of all nation-states into a single world-wide autocracy capable of such distribution of resources, an absence of any form of competition (including sports, business or academic endeavour), and the consequent absence of excellence or merit, just uniform mediocrity, the way Vonnegut described it in his Harrison Bergeron. My list of qualities that would need to be dispensed with could go on, but I think I have illustrated why the concept of total equality is absurd.

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