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February 18, 2003

Anti-democratic sentiments

I noticed this entry on the Weekly James about the protestors marching against the war on Iraq at a moment when James THOUGHT BRIEFLY OF HEADING DOWNTOWN. James said:

'I even ran into a neighbor from up the street, his wife and three children in tow - a nice guy with whom I've shared an after-work beer over the fence.

"You going to The Walk?" he asked hopefully.

"Hell no! I'm going to Cole's!" I replied, laughing, having misread his question and assuming we would have a laugh about the great unwashed heading downtown.

"Oh, that's right! You're American!" he said, a roll of pennies clattering behind his eyes.

As if that explained the whole thing, and that my accent automatically meant that I was like some grinning, bloody-fanged Jewish caricature in an Arab newspaper gleefully eating Muslim children.'

No James, wrong call. Its calling those Australian citizens exercising their political rights ' the great unwashed' that is the issue. That language refers back to the dirty, uneducated proles of the nineteenth century. They were seen as the dangerous classes but they won their political rights through political struggle. The language indicates a resignation to that political reality of democracy, but it dismisses them as uneducated and ruled by emotion and instinct.

And the iconoclastic Tim Blair, who gets his rocks off deflating left triumphalism, quotes the above passage on his Monday post here without comment. So neo-con Tim thinks the protestors as the great unwashed. Tim, we are waiting for you to push things a bit. Why not call them the enemy within? Why not accuse those who marched against a war with Iraq of committing treason.

O, c-mon Tim. Don't disappoint us. Push that envelop beyond 'peace-lovin' idealists', 'Peace Mooks', 'chicken shits' etc. Transgress the boundaries by moving beyond comments like its the '' Iraqi people the crazy Left doesn't care about.' Move beyond being entertained by the absurdities of lefty life----the capering of the love pixies-----to scorning democracy. Let us see the neo-con snarl behind the entertainer.

We want to be entertained.

Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at February 18, 2003 10:57 AM

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It's the smugness that really appalls about you people. Last weekend's rallies have shocked and disgusted decent people all over the world. There is nothing very amusing about it.

Oddly enough, old china, though it may not seem like it now, you are in a minority. A grubby, irresponsible minority. Read a little more widely, old son.

Ignorance is bliss. Enjoy! When Saddam is destroyed, as he certainly will be, your disgusting and bankrupt position will go down the toilet as well.

Posted by: Peter Watt at February 18, 2003 08:24 PM

Wrong call. It's about the fact that being American means you are a war-mongering idiot. Still we'll be at war soon and all this posturing will become irrelevant. THEN you'll be entertained my little chicken.

Posted by: Great Unwashed at February 18, 2003 09:45 PM

Tim posted a response to your drivel. As expected, he rather elegantly kicked your ass.


Posted by: Amos at February 18, 2003 10:27 PM

Wow, being American = being a War Mongering Idiot! We just can't help it -- it's in our genes! Thanks for clearing this up -- I was so confused about my sudden desire to have my country's government defend me against terrorists and their many fans instead of sending them presents and hugs to make them feel better.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at February 19, 2003 02:41 AM

A grubby irresponsible minority? My disgusting and bankrupt position being flushed down the toilet. Ignorant, narrowly and red?

Its close to being charged with treason. The emotions are there not the word.

And that reaction to an argument that Australia should work through the UN and an acknowledgement that the Iraqi regime has not cooperated with resolution 1441?

Hi Great unwashed:I have no truck with Americans being war mongering idiots; nor war being in American genes Andrea: ---I talk in terms of the Bush Admininistration, a realist account of international relations and an unwillingness by the Bush administration to accept constraints on its power by an international governing institution (UN.

And thats drivel Amos? Wheres the argument for that claim?

Posted by: Gary Sauer-Thompson at February 19, 2003 06:23 AM

This is what happens when you spear the credibility of a chickenhawk like Timbo. The conga-line of suckholes has just swept through your comments box Gary. All piss and wind!

Posted by: Mark Worthington at February 19, 2003 08:40 AM

"unwillingness by the Bush administration to accept constraints on its power by an international governing institution "

Oh god, I just bust a gut laughing! The sheer fascist idiocy implicit in that statement marks you out as an irredeemable statist asshole. Your kind are born to be slaves and lick the boots of a strongman. My kind are born to ignore your kind, or, if you look like actually taking over, shooting you in the fucking head.

Listen, moron, in order to control a freedom-loving country you first have to conquer it with an army. The UN hasn't done that to America, so I don't think we'll be seeing an unelected, corrupt socialist junta of hostile foreign powers overwriting the US constitution any time soon, will we?

Will we, asshole?

No. So shut the fuck up. And BTW, I'm not American.

Posted by: Amos at February 19, 2003 10:42 AM

Your kind are born to be slaves and lick the boots of a strongman. My kind are born to ignore your kind, or, if you look like actually taking over, shooting you in the fucking head.

You were saying about sheer fascist idiocy?

And BTW, I'm not American.

Try spelling "arsehole" correctly, then.

Posted by: James Russell at February 19, 2003 11:46 AM

You idiots are the gutless scum of the earth, here's why:

"I lived through war almost my entire childhood in Iraq. When I was in fourth grade in 1980, Saddam Hussein invaded Iran. For the next eight years, my hometown of Basra suffered daily Iranian bombing raids.

Outside our school, my friends and I used to wave at passing military cars with young soldiers in the back, heading off to the front. We would flash them victory signs, but they would shake their fingers at us and make an upside down V -- the opposite of victory. With hundreds dying every week on the front lines and capital punishment the penalty for deserters, these young men were bitter because they knew their lives had been stolen from them for no reason other than Hussein's deadly ambition.

Throughout the war with Iran, students were forced to attend staged rallies praising Hussein and our "martyrs" dying for a holy cause at the front. Teachers would end school early, and police carrying whips would force us out into the streets and hand us signs to hold up for the cameras. The government propaganda made me sick, and I always tried to run away, but the police prevented it. In the late 1980s, the war with Iran (Iraqis call it the first Gulf War) ended, but Hussein's war against his own people continued. Iraq was a dead end, so after graduating from high school in 1990, I left for Kuwait. But Hussein followed me south a few weeks later, with his invasion of Kuwait and terror campaign against its civilians. [...]

As Hussein's forces withdrew from Kuwait, the Iraqi people, encouraged by U.S. leaders, rose up. With very few weapons, thousands desperate for freedom suddenly took to the streets and confronted Hussein's forces. Although I was only 20 years old and a woman, I joined in the fighting. American help never came, and Hussein's forces regrouped and killed thousands to regain control of Iraq. Those of us who survived scattered across Iraq and around the world. Our hopes crushed, we tried to forget what it was like to taste freedom for a few days.

Today in the U.S., as I watch soldiers shipping off, I see protesters chanting against American ambition and greed. Having lived through wars that were all about one man's ambition and greed, I am pained to see how these protesters have missed the mark. On behalf of Iraqis who cannot speak openly with reporters or who have given their lives trying to free Iraq from Hussein's brutal rule, let me say clearly: American, British and other allied soldiers are a sign of hope and liberation."

-Zainab Al-Suwaij

Why so few Iraqis at your hate-America hippydfest, assholes? If you had one ounce of decency you'd be ashamed of yourselves. But you don't. Go to hell.

Posted by: Anonymous at February 19, 2003 04:23 PM

For the person who called me a hate-America hippyfest arsehole. Hi there.

Clearly you don't read this weblog. I have no problem accepting that the current Iraqi regime is oppressive and that the Iraqi people yearn for freedom from tyranny; or that the same regime is playing cat and mouse with the UN.

What I am objecting to are the arguments put forward by the Australian Govt for Iraq being a threat to the national interest of Australia and its refusal to accept that the critics have a variety of third ways (eg. vigilant containment) between war now and peace forever. What I want the Australian Government to do is work through the UN, however flawed that process is.

Posted by: Gary Sauer-Thompson at February 19, 2003 08:31 PM

Funny how opposing an attack by the world's largest military power (by far) on a helpless little third-world country and one thorough-going bastard is deemed the act of 'gutless scum' ...

Posted by: Rob Schaap at February 19, 2003 09:12 PM

gutless scum

Posted by: Amos at February 20, 2003 11:51 AM

Oh yeah! You're gutless scum!
I love this level of debate. The right are so good at it.

Posted by: Gutless scum at February 20, 2003 12:38 PM

Right, left. You all concern me deeply.

Posted by: Adam at February 20, 2003 04:16 PM

gutless scum

That's particularly hilarious coming from someone too chickenshit to include a real email address with his messages...

Posted by: James Russell at February 20, 2003 05:43 PM

Personally I'm a bit fed up of Blairs approach to debate: abuse the opposition to death. He's a bit of a one trick pony to be honest.

Oh, and Amos, grow up or fuck off. Please.


Posted by: Stewart Kelly at February 20, 2003 05:51 PM

can I suggest that you both read and study Tim Blair to pick up a few rhetorical techniques to add to your bag of tricks.

If you dont no one will read you---as you can see by the reaction to your insights into the nature of politics.

Posted by: Gary Sauer-Thompson at February 20, 2003 06:42 PM

Personally I think Tim Blair is a traitor. He clearly puts the interests of a foreign nation above our own.

Posted by: Anthony at February 20, 2003 11:54 PM

I tend to agree Anthony, but we should at least allow the possibility that Blair really believes that the best course for Australia is all-at-sea with GWB and damn the torpedoes. It would be nice if he was honest enough to just come out and say it rather than chunter on with all this saucer-eyed, hand-me-down WMD rhetoric.

He doesn't permit anyone's opinion to do battle with his own on his blog, so we can't ask him direct, which I suspect is just how he likes it.

We meet again Amos and the experience is even less pleasant than before. Go to hell, or rather, go to hell more speedily.

What a gallery of fearful, ignorant dills.

Posted by: Glenn at February 22, 2003 02:53 PM

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