Thursday, July 21, 2005

Brit Links!

One - The Independent has an interview with Roger Scruton that includes this:
When I arrive at the farm in Wiltshire where Scruton and his wife Sophie raise their two children, Sam, six, Lucy, four, and their various animals, there is little sign of the suffering, sensitive Scruton. As he is just back from America, I ask if he is suffering from jetlag. "Jetlag is a proletarian defect," comes the crisp answer, as he leads the way into a book-lined living room stuffed with tatty furniture and a Bakelite telephone. After a drink, we move through to begin lunch, components of which have been produced on the Scruton farm. "That's Singer," declares Roger, pointing at a plate of leftover sausages. Singer the pig, mischievously named after Peter Singer, the philosopher and animal-rights theorist, has been "ensausaged" personally by his former owner. Roger beams as another lunch guest, his publisher Robin Baird-Smith, asks if he can take the final morsel. Singer, it must be said, does taste pretty good.
Interestingly, Scruton almost became a candidate for the Tory party but gave up the idea after an interviewer told him there could never be such a thing as a 'conservative philosopher.' Wot? Perhaps Scuton should run in Canada. According to Andrew (no relation to Harry) Potter, Canadians have beein sitting around pining for a philospher king ever since Pierre Trudeau left the scene. His article in today's Post, btw, is excellent and if you can get your hands on it, by all means do so. Two - Blimpish says what's on everyone's mind:
My theory is that most of us on the Right are like that - being conservative means you really, badly want to be in the mainstream, because that's what you're conserving, after all. But most people on the Left want to be considered outside the mainstream - a bit of a rebel, a bit edgy and dangerous. The problem is that, today, neither side gets what it wants - Right-wingers are always having to apologise, and Left-wingers have to resort to shock tactics (sometimes bordering on the absurd) in order to be non-mainstream again. This is why, obviously, the Left should surrender and let us have our way - then they can be all rebellious, and we can be elitist and return to unthinking defence of the status quo, which is surely when we're at our best...
Three - Blimpish (again) - A Mulsim groups's spokesperson is said to have justified suicide bombing in the past, and the spokesman 'refutes' it by saying, basically, yes I do...
He moved quickly to clarify, saying that that justification was with reference to the Palestinian situation, which was very very different. The more moderate participants in the discussion moved quickly to... agree! They said, too, that Israeli oppression in the occupied territories made that a very different situation, and that they were in solidarity with those struggling against it. Now, here is my point: for all the time that decent Muslims are willing to justify the use of suicide bombing as a legitimate means of warfare anywhere, they are leaving the door open to its use in other situations. Let's be clear on what we're talking about here. It's a legitimate opinion to believe, to take the most extreme view, that the whole of Israel is an occupation of Palestinian soil and hope for that situation to come to an end. I think that opinion is wrong, but it's fair enough. There's also some argument, if you take a certain (wrong) view of the occupied territories seized as a result of the Six Day War, to give support to armed action against that occupation. There is though no argument, in any circumstances, for the support of Palestinians' use of terrorist violence against civilian Israelis, whether suicide bombing or not.

No comments: