Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 8142 (since 2009-12-17 04:46:00)

Showing comments 8142 - 8101

  • Hillel's segregated lunch counter
  • White House says Netanyahu offers no alternative but military action (and Liz Warren won't say if she's attending speech)
  • Banksy goes to Gaza
    • Excellent work by Banksy.

      "on the internet people only look at pictures of kittens”

      We do sometimes look at other things. But kittens are what the internet is for.

  • Leading NY institutions discuss the Nakba -- and there is not a Palestinian in sight
    • That is a tricky one. I pondered a little about it myself.

      On the one hand, "with the assumption" certainly refers to "start the story", and is equal in status to "from 1920".

      On the other hand, my fingers automatically put it in, and I am inclined to presume they have good reason for punctuation. Perhaps they thought it was something in the style of an Oxford comma.

      On reflection, I think you are right to question it. I was not writing a list, so the Oxford excuse does not apply.

      I will institute a Commission of Inquiry for my fingers, which might lead to disciplinary action and a spell in the re-education camps in the North.

    • I sometimes think that Zionists cannot distinguish between legal and moral because they simply do not understand morality. If they understood morality, they would not be Zionists.

      But that is the Socratic position that if people really understood that what they were doing was wrong, they wouldn't do it. And look what happened to Socrates.

    • Be that as it may, Walid, it is important to stress that none of this absolves or in any way mitigates the evil of Zionism.

    • Incidentally, the Arabs offered a pretty good deal. They offered to integrate the Jewish immigrants who were already present as full citizens with equal rights, and (if I remember rightly) had even agreed to Hebrew as an official language.

      No partition, no "ethnic/religious" state. No further waves of Jewish immigration.

      Seems fair to me.

    • You want to start the story from 1920, and with the assumption that the establishment of a Jewish State was morally justified.

      But the story starts before then, with the origins of Zionism among European Jews. From Herzl on, the Zionists planned to take over a country already occupied by other people, and to create a state for themselves there. This was not for the benefit of the people who lived in the land, nor for the benefit of humanity as a whole, but for the benefit of their group.

      This was morally wrong. It does not matter how often it has been done in the past by other people, or by whom it has been done, or when it was done, or how many other people have got away with it.

      It was wrong.

      And the idea behind it, that Jews are more important than other people, and so their wishes and needs outweigh those of other people, was also wrong.

      Not surprising, then, that Arabs started resisting when they saw their country being invaded by people who showed themselves to be enemies of the Arabs.

      The Zionists were uninvited foreigners. They entered the country with the avowed (loud and often) intent of taking over the country and setting up a state in which they would be top dogs, run for their benefit.

      They set up an alternative society, with institutions for the promotion of Jewish interests and from which locals were excluded. They bought up some land and drove off the tenant farmers.

      The people of Palestine understood perfectly well that this bunch of European settlers intended to take the land from them, and this intention was there even before the settlers arrived.

      If the Europeans had entered modestly with the intent of becoming part of the community instead of rejecting and replacing it, I suspect things would have been very different.

      " Those state-building efforts were legal under the Ottomans, then the British."

      Zionists never seem to understand the distinction between "legal" and "moral".

      "Also, the Yishuv knew there were millions of Jews in Europe facing considerable danger (one wonders if even they fully understood it). The Yishuv couldn’t possibly hope to provide refuge to at least some of those millions with belligerent irregulars nestled in densely Arab areas under loose Jewish control."

      The Yishuv had no right to provide refuge to those Jews at the expense of the Arabs. Once again, this is the attitude that Jews matter more than other people.

      And building barns does not mitigate this wrong.

    • "Shapira says, at least says here, that if BG wanted a Jewish country, this is the only way to get it. She is not saying “inadvertence” here; she is saying “necessity”.

      Shapira's attitude is that the wants and needs of Jews are more important than the wants and needs of other people. "We matter and you don't."* And for that very reason the creation of Israel was wrong. Basing a state on such contempt for humanity was itself a crime.

      "Shapira went on to say that ethnic cleansing– “population movements” — was the norm at that time of history. They happened across Europe and in India and Pakistan. Judging Israel for its conduct then by today’s standards is like judging George Washington for holding slaves."

      It's the old "we can't judge them by today's standards" cultural relativism again. The idea is that right and wrong are just the attitudes of the majority. When those attitudes change, right and wrong change.

      Philosophers have written so much criticism of this view that it amazes, and depresses, me that it still hangs around, but it seems to be still established in the artsy-fartsy set. (Applied selectively, of course. we do not hear the alleged decapitations performed by ISIS dismissed as "It's just their way.")

      Ethnic cleansing is wrong. Always was. Always will be.

      (And there were plenty of people in America during and before GW's time who held that slavery was wrong. Thomas Paine was not the least, but the legislatures of Vermont (1777) and Pennsylvania (1780) passed laws abolishing slavery. Pennsylvania Quakers protested against slavery as early as 1688.)

      (*Thank you yet again, Saleema.)

  • Kerry says Netanyahu was wrong the last time he pushed war for the U.S.
    • Is he bullet-proof as well, or just brave enough to take the risk?

    • "life was better for most Iraqis under Saddam"

      There was a time when I never thought I would write that a country was better off when it was run by a brutal, repressive, murderous, war-mongering, CIA-sponsored, paranoid, thug.

      Only cynicism and my cat save me from total despair.

  • Forensic expert says Israeli forces killing of 19-year-old Palestinian 'similar to an execution'
    • Aspiring chef shot dead by Israeli soldier
      Palestinian girl injured after being hit by settler vehicle in Silwan
      Palestinian injured after being rammed by an Israeli car in Hebron
      Israeli extremists attack shop in Hebron
      Four injured by live Israeli fire in Bethlehem
      Dancing children attacked by Israeli forces
      Israeli extremists open fire on Palestinian homes in Bethlehem
      Five Palestinians kidnapped in the West Bank
      Several Palestinians injured near Jenin; three children kidnapped in Jerusalem
      Settlers burn mosque near Bethlehem
      Christian center set on fire, vandalized in Jerusalem hate crime attack


      This is why I look for pictures of kittens.

  • Israel gives out 'security Oscars' at the UN to Iran, Hezbollah, Saudi Arabia and PA
    • Bit confusing, there, Taxi.

      It's pretty obvious that the US engineered the coup that overthrew the government, but I haven't seen anything to suggest they gave any support to the Russian speaking rebels in the East. Those rebels got a lot of their equipment from the Ukrainian army. I'm pretty sure they are getting some supplies and advice from Russia, but I haven't seen any decent evidence of Russian regulars crossing the border. The chief of the Ukrainian armed forces recently denied that they were fighting actual Russians.

      The official language of the Ukraine is Ukrainian (very similar to Russian) and as far as I know Ukrainian speaking Ukrainians generally regarded themselves as Ukrainian. I don't know whether previously they regarded themselves as being a subgroup of Russians in the way that the Welsh are a subgroup of the British, or whether they regarded themselves as distinct from Russians in the way the Welsh are distinct from the English.

  • Netanyahu speech is 'destructive' of 'bipartisan, immutable relationship' between US and Israel, Rice says
    • "What we are doing on these sites."

      Mostly commenting on and criticizing the evil of Zionism.

      Anything wrong with that?

      Fairly often commenting on the flaws of the Arab world and the various evils of Arab governments.

      Anything wrong with that?

      "Whataboutery: it’s deep."

      What is that supposed to mean?

  • Israel turns off power to hundreds of thousands of Palestinians in the dead of winter
    • "criticizing minor auto-correct spelling mistakes as a last resort"

      My ire was misdirected. I apologize. That blasted auto-correct creates more errors than drunkenness and illiteracy combined. (Or so I suspect. I haven't tried typing while illiterate.)

      Not a last resort, though.

    • "for not towing the Qatari’s line.

      "For not TOEING the Qatari's line", dammit.

    • Americans don't like to write naughty words, but they think that British or Australian versions aren't really naughty. (After all, we write them all the time, and they even get published on MW.)

      Americans were quite happy to advertise "Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me", even though "shag" is a very naughty word in Britain. (And you can have fun buying carpets and pipe tobacco.) I doubt that an American equivalent (if there is one) would have been allowed.

  • Cycle '48: Remapping the Nakba
    • The Canadian Government should mount a military operation in Israel to rescue these persecuted Canadian Jews and take them back to Canada where they would be safe.

    • "If nationalism is bad why not find non-nationalistic solutions like settling Palestinians in other parts of the ME (plenty of empty space) or assisting there emigration to the west as Millions of Muslims have been doing in the last two decades?"

      Alternatively, instead of sending the Palestinians to places they don't want to go, why not send the Israeli Jews to the lands of their forefathers? Quite a few are going to Germany already, and there is plenty of empty space in Poland, Russia, and the Ukraine.

      Or what about assisting their emigration to the US, as millions of Jews have been doing for the last century or so?

  • Inflammatory posters at UCLA call Students for Justice in Palestine 'Jew haters' (Updated)
    • "Jews on campus don’t owe anyone anything."

      Are you suggesting that Jews on campus have no duties to their fellow students, to the University, to the society which sustains them, or to humanity as a whole?

      Why are they exempt, and does this exemption cease when they graduate?

  • Ten year old Palestinian boy attacked by settlers and abducted by Israeli soldiers while playing in the snow in Hebron
  • Racism is in the air: Video showing racist exchange between Israelis and a flight attendant goes viral
    • " proper British accent may sound patronizing,"

      If, while using said accent, you drawl a little, look down your nose, and toss in a Latin phrase or two, the lower orders will recognize their cultural and intellectual inferiority, and subjugate themselves accordingly.

      On the other, using the same accent, but with a sort of reticent politeness (Hugh Grant and Martin Freeman can give lessons in this), and you can charm your way into almost anywhere.

    • "I actually addressed them with a posh British accent "

      I've got one of those. Very useful at times. Combined with old fashioned, reticent, courtesy it gets amazing results in Asia, and especially those bits that were once British. Scares Americans. They think you are a super-villain.

  • Netanyahu flips off Harry Truman
    • " Israel to purchase 14 more F-35 planes from U.S."

      If Israel actually had to pay for those (perhaps from the money they get by selling the best bits of the technology to China) it would serve them right. The plane is, by most accounts, a turkey.

      Of course, we in Australia will have to pay for ours. For a fraction of the price we could have bought Russian, French, or Swedish planes that actually work.

  • Jewish groups that blindly support Israel make US and European Jews potential victims of violence -- Avnery
    • "It is antisemitic to blame Jews for their own persecution."

      So what? The important question is whether Jews are, to any extent, to blame for the persecution of Jews.

      (JeffB seems to suggest that they are.)

      Note that saying "the persecution of some Jews is, at least partially, a result of the anti-social activities and/or attitudes of some other Jews" does not in any way imply that the persecution is justified.

  • How two Palestinian Americans plan to PIVOT the world
  • 'Large group' of indigenous Indians are cleared to immigrate to Israel and convert to Judaism
    • "Pretty soon the Israelis will be claiming to have invented ... chai, too!"

      They already do, don't they? In the pattern of "Toys R Us" they go around saying (ungrammatically) "Israel Am Chai".

    • Importing Indians into Israel might help to make Israeli food a bit tastier and Israeli manners a bit better.

  • Is flying a nationalist flag ever a progressive act?
    • "I know that claiming to be against capitalism and wearing Che Guevara T-shirts counts as edgy these days"

      It used to be "edgy" when I was young, but that was a long time ago, and we didn't use the word "edgy" to mean "at the forefront of a trend" (OED) in those days.

      Has it come back into fashion?

    • You don't define "progressive act". From your context I'm guessing you mean something on the lines of "an act that promotes some sort of socialism".
      And I think that, in some contexts, flying a nationalist flag could help to promote socialism. Consider the following.

      People in the US have had it drilled into them that socialists are the ultimate evil. Socialists will eat their children, kick their cats, and bring an end to apple pie, motherhood, baseball, and everything that is pure, beautiful, and good. Worse, they will hand over the U.S. to Cuba or Britain. Americans will be governed by foreigners, and forced to learn geography and grammar.

      Now suppose (and now we are, I admit, moving into the realms of wild fantasy) that the U.S. had real socialist party. For such a party to expand and gain support, it will need to convince Americans that not all of the terrible things listed above will happen. Since Americans believe that the American flag is the flag of the American people (and not just the elite), surely it would help to promote socialism for the party to use the American flag.

      But there is another aspect to the use of a nationalistic flag. As pablemont points out, it can also be the symbol of an oppressed group. If we take "progressive" in a broader sense to mean "promoting social justice", then flying that flag in defiance of the oppressors would also count as progressive. There is more to social justice than just economic justice.

  • Hate in the aftermath of Chapel Hill
  • Dershowitz's comments are 'shockingly vicious and sexist,' says Harvard Law Record article
    • "Brutalized by Epstein, betrayed by federal prosecutors who refused to pursue justice,"

      I haven't been following the details of this case. Has it been established that Jane Doe 3 was brutalized, etc.?

  • Israel sentences Palestinian teen Lina Khattab to 6 months in prison for protesting
  • One-state 'fantasy is very dangerous' because it cannot tell us what the military looks like -- Manekin
    • Iyay oughtthay eway allyay ouldcay eakspay igpay atinlay ybay adegray ourfay.
      Eway ouldcay inyay ymay oolschay.

    • Let’s have a look at the Zionists.

      "The practice of Zionism inevitably erodes character because it rests on a foundation of dishonesty and injustice." (Thomas Rutherford.)

      Zionists say that Jews have a right to establish a state for Jews. (Variously, for protection, a cure for their neuroses, to resolve their existential crises, and so forth. But always and only for the betterment of Jews.)

      In creating this state they are guilty of injustice, racism, aggression, grand larceny, murder, ethnic cleansing and war crimes, and a host of other transgressions against humanity.

      They say that the rights of Palestinians, the needs of Palestinians, the interests of Palestinians, and the desires of Palestinians must all be secondary to the wishes of Jews. First the Jews must get what they want. The Palestinians can have the leftovers.

      They say that the real suffering of Palestinians is not as important as the possible (but not actually happening) suffering of Jews.

      But it is not just the Palestinians that they discount. The basic opposition is not Jewish settler vs Arab indigene in Palestine, but Jew vs gentile everywhere. Palestinians just happened to be the ones on the land they wanted. Anyone else, anywhere, who opposes Zionism will, if the Zionists can manage it, get the same treatment.

      Zionists say to the world "We matter and you don't."

      So, yes, I think we can fairly say the Zionists (not the Jews) are enemies of mankind.

    • “Israel was established out of the need (or perceived need) for Jews to have an army”

      Whether real or perceived, that need does not necessarily outweigh the rights of non-Jews.

    • "Zionist are intrinsically incapable of having or even imagining a loyalty to any *common cause, principle or country except what they regard as the Jewish People’s Cause/Country. "

      I agree. This is an aspect being the enemies of mankind.

      But are Zionists doomed to be Zionists to the end of their days? Will all their children be Zionists?

      People and institutions can and do change their ideas and practices. I have seen it in my lifetime. And, even though they reject humanity, Zionists are human.

      So although I do not anticipate a sudden enlightenment of Zionists in the next twenty minutes or so, it is possible that the road to equal rights for Palestinians in a single state would not be as hard as you imagine.

      By formally setting up a single state, and acknowledging the Palestinians as citizens, the Israeli government would be rejecting Zionism, and that would have an influence on people.

      And, as Mooser says, a lot of the hard-liners would leave and come to whine at the rest of us.

    • Page: 81
    • "I think the easiest solution is the Palestinians get assimilated."

      Do you mean all Palestinians become Israeli citizens with equal rights to Jewish Israeli citizens? I'm pretty sure they would accept that. It isn't on offer.

      Do you mean all Palestinians become Israeli citizens with equal rights to those Palestinians who are currently Israeli citizens. I think they might accept even that as a step in the right direction. Is that being offered?

      Do you mean they should become Jews? That might be a little less acceptable.

    • Don't put your hopes on global warming. Global warming stopped 18 years ago, so I don't expect it to do anything about the status quo In the ME unless it starts again. At the moment a period of global cooling seems at least as likely as more warming.

    • I prefer "The Socialist and Democratic People's Republic of the Holy Land".

      ("Palestinians were/are a certifiable people"

      You might want to rephrase that, to avoid misunderstandings.

      Certifiable: adjective.

      1. Able or needing to be officially recorded: ‘encephalitis was a certifiable condition’

      2. Officially recognized as needing treatment for mental disorder: ‘it is possible that he will have to return to hospital, but at the moment he is not certifiable’

      2.1 informal Mad; crazy: ‘the world of fashion is almost entirely insane, the people who work in it mainly certifiable’

      link to

  • Boteach and Israeli ambassador say everything from BDS to Abbas places Jews under threat
  • Closed-door debate on divestment by U of Toledo student gov't to include officials from Jewish Federation
    • "When the Jews founded their state in Palestine no other people claimed political sovereignty over it."

      I'm pretty sure the Palestinians were claiming political sovereignty over the whole even when it was under British Mandate.

      But even if they did not, how does that justify driving them out of their homes, and stealing their property?

  • How a Washington state teacher is bringing Palestine into high school classrooms
    • 'using frames of “competing narratives”'

      I'm not happy with that phrase. To me it suggests a lack of concern with establishing facts or delivering justice.

      But I still wish her well. And I expect her to be thrown out of the teaching profession very soon for daring to mention the Palestinians.

  • Warriors for 'the ultimate truth' gather in New York
    • Kris, I can't put a lot of trust in an author who doesn't know the difference between "flaunt" and "flout".

      That said, I agree that JeffB is talking about some sort of personality disorder. (Unless by "their almost undead existence" he is telling us that Jews are vampires.)

      And replacing that personality disorder with another does not justify the evil of Zionism.

  • US and Israel divorce rumors over Iran
    • "That is building a 21ft wall and embracing a 66ft wave of water that engulfs it. It completely disrupted whatever backup/s TEPCO had"

      Bit more complicated than that. Even under those conditions, it should have been possible to shut the thing down fairly safely.

      "and the result, well.. we all know what happened next."

      Actually, we don't. It is still not clear exactly what went wrong, and what is happening there right now.

    • "We must look like uncivilized barbarians to the rest of the world."

      Actually, Kay, even before the Iraq war ...

      But until Vietnam it was mostly cultural snobbery. After that it was clear that a humanitarian mission by the US forces was something best avoided.

    • Based on the following.

      1. Stuxnet is allegedly and Israeli/US joint product, intended to shut down the Iranian nuclear programme.

      2. The security at Fukushima was provided by Israeli firm Magna BSP. Shortly after Magna started operations, Stuxnet cropped up on computers all over Japan. The Magna people scurried off back to Israel shortly before the disaster. The system they instsalled included an internet link back to Israel.

      3. Stuxnet works by disrupting Siemens industrial hydraulic control systems, while sending normal readings to the control stations.

      4. The cooling systems which failed at Fukushima were controlled by Siemens software. They failed in the way Stuxnet causes failure.

      5. One system was not on Siemens software. That one kept running.

      Not proof, but reason for suspicion.

    • "Stuxnet! Yeah, thanks a lot"

      I suspect that Stuxnet played a role in the Fukushima disaster. If so, I, all the members of my family who live next to the Pacific, and especially those who live in Japan, have cause to be really grateful for that. It will be a long time before that gift stops giving.

  • Netanyahu calls on Jews to leave Europe en masse in wake of Copenhagen synagogue attack
    • ews are not a nation. Zionists are not a nation.

      France is a nation, and the French are citizens of that nation.
      China is a nation, and the Chinese are citizens of that nation.

      France and China defend their territory and act (or should act) in support of all their citizens (French and Chinese Jews as well), regardless of the ethnicity or religion of those citizens.

      The Zionists did not have a territory, but chose to take the territory of another country and drive out the people who lived there. They are not concerned with citizenship but with ethnicity.

      If you wish to refer to Algeria and Tibet as examples of France and China behaving like Zionists, go ahead. That might make the French and Chinese governments of the time enemies of mankind. It won't stop the Zionists from being enemies of mankind.

      As for Judea, it has long ceased to exist. Israel is a new invention, not a continuation of that ancient country.

    • Well, that's a weird moderating decision. Ban the main post, but publish the coda.

      I don't understand why my previous attempt was moderated, but I'll try again. Perhaps if I make it clearer, they might pass it. (Was sich überhaupt sagen lässt, lässt sich klar sagen…)

      Thanks for those reasons. A reason based on Christian belief, and another based on Jewish practice. Much better than the nonsense about some sort of inbuilt anti-Semitic instinct.

      Of course, since Christianity is waning dramatically in Europe, the first reason will soon cease to apply.

      It seems to me that your second reason is suggesting that that Jews bring a lot of anti-Semitism onto themselves by refusing to be part of the society they live in.

      I am not allowed to say that. (…und wovon man nicht reden kann, darüber muss man schweigen.)

      "by abandoning Judaism (which they call Zionism)"

      So Judaism is the same as Zionism? A lot of Jews on this site disagree with that. But, since Zionists are the enemies of mankind, you (and not I) have just declared that Jews - followers of Judaism - are the enemies of mankind.

      "Judaism is not a religion of belief but one of practice."

      So the God stuff is just an optional extra?

      "Those practices are often the cultural components of what was until recently the dead country of Judaea. To be Jewish is to be a foreigner."

      All those centuries of keeping up the practices of a defunct country for no discernible reason, and being persecuted because of it, when the easy (and morally preferable) alternative was just to become part of the surrounding culture. (Or is it that which I am not allowed to say? A similar sentiment was edited from another post.) And we keep getting told that Jews are smart.

      Incidentally, Judea is still defunct.

    • Accentitude, Mooser, stop thinking about Annette Funicello's ... erm ... attributes. Go and have a cold shower. But not together.

    • Also, on the topic of clinging on to "cultures", I came across this the other day.

      "To complicate things further, the Brits have main meal dishes which are described as pudding - black pudding and white pudding. These are revolting subsistence foods from the dark ages made with offal, ground oatmeal, dried pork and rubbish from the kitchen floor. The difference between the black and white puddings is that the black one contains substantial quantities of blood. This, much like haggis, is one of those foodstuffs that modern life has saved us from but that people insist on dredging up because it’s a part of their “cultural heritage.” Bathing once a year and shitting in a bucket was a part of your cultural heritage too, you know. At least be consistent."

      link to

    • The comics are hilarious. The films are best avoided.

    • "Recently Denmark hasn’t tolerated pro-Israeli sentiments from its Jewish population. This is a clear statement by Danes that Jews are Danish by gift not right."

      Does Denmark tolerate pro-Israeli sentiments from any part of its population? If not, this is not discrimination against Jews.

      And how does this show that Jews are Danish by gift and not by right?

      Recently Germany hasn't tolerated sentiments questioning the Holocaust story from some Germans. Is that a clear statement that those Germans are German by gift, and not by right?

    • "That preference for killing Jews is not because of Israel. "

      So why do they have a preference for killing Jews? Give us real, concrete, reasons, and not some vague waffle about "accepting the Other" or similar tripe.

    • "We don’t all agree here"

      Yes we do.

    • Well, that was boring. From that video it looks as though Jews walk just like everyone else.

      Walking like an Egyptian is much more fun.

  • 'American Sniper' is an antiwar movie
    • "Nobody ever has a good word to say for lemmings."

      I do. They are wonderful things. Make your mouth pucker up if you try to eat them raw, but add a wonderful flavour to lots of dishes, both sweet and savoury. Squeeze the juice out, add water, a bit of sugar, ice, and you've got a refreshing drink. You can make a pie filling with them. (Top it with meringue.) And lots of other uses.

  • A place where Palestine doesn't exist (Notes from a Zionist education)
    • "This is nothing more than a Jew demonstrating his disconnection from his own identity"

      What is his "identity"? How does he become "disconnected" from it.

      I think of "identity" in either philosophical terms (I wrote a book about that)

      link to
      link to

      or in legal terms of DOB, Nationality, etc.

      But with both those types of identity, I can't see that anyone (Jew or not) can have any other identity than his own, and I can't see how anyone can be disconnected from it.

      "This assertion is plainly false as Jews have been amongst the most prominent in popular movements worldwide that have fought for the rights of minorities and the oppressed. "

      And there are Jews prominent in movements for the rights of the Palestinians.

      "On the other hand our ‘Palestinian’ counterparts have truly adopted a narrative"

      What narrative? Palestinians have taken the line that Jews should live in Palestine as equals, not as overlords.

      "that will not entertain any accommodation to the Jewish predicament, as is most evident in the anti-normalization movement and the bigotry of Holocaust deniers."

      What predicament is that, and why should Palestinians concern themselves with it?

  • 700 UK artists pledging not to go to Israel include Soueif, Ali, Waters, Eno, Leigh, Churchill
  • No one's talking about peace in Israeli election, U.S. liberal Zionists are warned
    • Nothing about the Sartre twins, Jean and her brother Paul, in the song.

      Mention here, though.

      (Annie, the song is here. I used to play it to my first year students to encourage them to take further courses.)

    • Mooser, the facticity of existentially eliminated options enables you to realise your freedom to interpret them in good faith, and recognize the absurdity of Being with its underlying Nothingness. Through the Angst and Sorge they generate, you can rescue yourself from inauthenticity by accepting Dasein as being-towards-death, and choose an authentic life in the World of Others you have fallen into.

  • The left needs to stop hounding Elizabeth Warren on Palestine, says Warren supporter
  • Leila Sansour in Bethlehem: 'When your city is being destroyed, what would you do?'
    • "18 yr. old drafted soldiers own their own with no training, officers, or command structure, is always a recipe for trouble. "

      Indeed. The traditional role of the IDF is to help old Palestinian ladies across the road and hand out ice cream and fluffy kittens to Palestinian children. These untrained draftees often get it the wrong way round.

  • Netanyahu's disaster: speech cost 'omnipotent' lobby a veto proof majority for Iran sanctions
    • @straightline.

      Tee Hee.


    • Thanks for the reassurance, Annie. When you see "In the US, the democrats are the SOCIALISTS", it's hard not to take it as a parody.

      If the Democrats are socialists, the Australian Liberals are Maoists, and the British Conservatives are a bunch of anarcho-syndicalists.

  • Remembering Bob Simon
  • Three Muslim-Americans murdered in North Carolina by gunman (Updated)
    • " it’s always a good idea for Jews, whether from Europe, North or South America, Oceania, or Africa, to leave Diaspora lands and make aliyah to live in their own country, Israel, whether a particular host country is hospitable to Jews or not."

      So you are saying that Australian Jews, Australian citizens, born and brought up in Australia, are not Australians but a sort of guest?

      Sound anti-Semitic to me.

  • Stanford petition misrepresents resolution to divest from occupation
    • ''The Iranians may very well fail to appreciate what the USA army would be capable of if our goals weren’t rather humane. "

      With Iraq on one border and Afghanistan on another, I'm sure the Iranians have a very clear idea what the US army, at its most humane, is capable of.

    • "We trust one side not to sell the technology to Iran "

      Selling US technology to China, on the other hand … meh, gotta make a living somehow.

  • 'She dedicated the whole of her young life to helping those in need of freedom, justice and peace': American hostage killed in Syria remembered for work in Palestine
  • I misremember Iraq
    • We knew that CNN was lying in 1991 when they called Arnett "the only Western journalist in Baghdad" because we saw the reports from Alfonso Rojo in our newspapers.

    • Healthy natural scepticism. (And it is a basic requirement of scientific method.) It is frequently reinforced by "scientific" claims that contradict previous claims or that run counter to experience.

      Anyone who completely believes something because "scientists say" is naive, and that's if they are working from the original reports from the scientists.

      Believing something because newspapers, etc., say "scientists say" requires deep, principled, gullibility.

      The history of science shows that major scientific progress mostly comes from showing that the standard, well-established, belief was wrong.

      (I would give examples, but I don't think the moderators really like science.)

  • Muslims are Nazis, 'USA Today' jokes
    • "And go work on a moral defense for Zionism. An amoral defense won’t cut it."

      The problem there, Mooser, is that Zionists don't understand morality. They think it includes exception clauses for the Jewish "people", and that all they have to do is invoke those clauses and - bingo! - Zionism is moral.

      Then they think there is something wrong with us when we don't agree.

  • In historic vote, UC Student Association endorses call for divestment in support of Palestinian rights
    • Baffled me in Ausralia, too. Didn't help when my elders, under the influence of old songs, referred to Betws-y-Coed as Betsy Co-ed.

      And whilst I can make sense of "daydream believer", I've no idea what a "homecoming queen" is.

      They do hand out pills at pep rallies, don't they?

  • Ari Shavit pimps AIPAC in Scarsdale
    • "This argument is superficially true but when you examine why the ‘ indigenous population became increasingly alarmed’ you will discover that this is so because of a fundamental xenophobia and judeophobia that eventually grew into full blooded anti-semitism in the Christian tradition."

      So all the loudly proclaimed plans of the Zionists to take over the country and expel or subjugate the indigenous population were ignored?

      The Zionists active discrimination against the indigenous population had no effect on the attitudes of the indigenous population?

      Nope. None of that made any difference.

      Even though Zionists drove indigenous farmers off the land they farmed, the indigenous population would have still loved the Zionists, except for that old fundamental xenophobia and judeophobia.

      And the evidence for this is overwhelming, isn't it?

  • New leftwing anti-semitism is when Jews feel 'attacked' over Israel's conduct
    • "many Jews now define their identity as, Support for Israel."

      Surely they aren't being forced to so define their "identity".

      (I don't think they are even being forced to have an "identity".)

      Then if they get upset when Israel is criticized, it's their own silly fault.

      All they have to do is say "Sod Israel", and all this nasty new anti-Semitism goes away.

  • Gideon Levy's argument for Netanyahu
    • "The land, he thought, would be the perfect home for a retreat where Orthodox Israelis could come to meditate."

      They can't do that in Israel? And would Orthodox want to meditate with Hindu swami?

  • Let liberal Jews weep for their dream of Israel, and move on -- Alice Rothchild
    • I mentioned some of the things people were going through in Asia and North Africa, pointed out that nothing of that sort was happening in the US, and then hinted that "her emotions were there" was not quite the same as being there.

    • “Let liberal Jews weep for their dream of Israel, and move on”

      Even the liberal Jewish dream of Israel was unconscionable.

      Let them weep that they were ever so debased as to hold that dream.

    • "But it isn’t merely trauma, it’s DEATH."

      No it isn't. When real death occurs, the stream of consciousness ceases to be associated with the body.

      What you are talking about may be a fate worse than death*, but it isn't death. You may want to use "death" as a metaphor, but it isn't death.

      And those who grieve are not the dead. People who are so attached to their fond ideas may grieve when they have to abandon those ideas, but those people are not dead

      "And before we can find out who we are, we must first find out who we are not. "

      No, we just have to look at our passports or birth certificates.

      (*Though not the one that many girls have regarded as better than starving.)

  • Do we really want Benjamin Netanyahu guiding U.S. foreign policy?
    • Less common is "whoopsie". I am not sure whether homosexuals would regard that one as a term of abuse or not, so I've decided to avoid it. I would not want to accidentally offend someone towards whom I have no animosity.

    • Thanks, Walid. I was wondering who she was.

      Rather apposite that it is a Minister of Culture that Yahoo pushes aside. He has no culture, and is no gentleman.

    • So the grapes of Yonah's wrath are just wax fruit?

    • As I said before, N's bodyguards pushed aside the Asian-looking woman (French Cabinet Minister?) but didn't have the nerve to try it with the very large African-looking military guy.

      No chivalry, no manners, and only moderated courage.

    • "A light bulb has gone off"

      In the dark again.

  • Pro-Israel campus activists acting as agents of state propaganda and intimidation
  • Biden will skip Netanyahu's speech
  • Ros-Lehtinen removes pro-Palestinian activists from Congressional hearing on punishing PA for joining ICC
    • A much better response than whining about anti-Semitism. I agree that the operations of the Zionists and their supporters are, in general, rather too public to be called a conspiracy.

      I also think that calling it a conspiracy suggests a rather tighter organization, with carefully crafted master plans, than the International pro-Israel movement seems to show.

      They do seem to follow the strategy of the Protocols , but I do not believe there is a bunch of Jews hunched over it saying "This forger had great ideas. Here's what we do next."

    • That's good. Do you "figure" this on the basis of research you have undertaken?

    • "You wrote that there’s a global conspiracy, led by Jews. That was your formulation and it’s a classic anti-Semitic theme. "

      It matters not a jot whether it is anti-Semitic or not. What matters is whether it is true.

    • O. K. That gives us reason to be a bit suspicious of the list, though not to reject it entirely. Can you provide a list from a more trustworthy source?

  • John Lewis tells D.C. crowd he will not attend Netanyahu speech
  • Chair of Democratic National Committee opposes Jewish intermarriage and MSNBC showing Gaza carnage
    • And which half? Top? Bottom? Left? Right?

    • "I don’t object to the fact that people wanting to keep their cultures and faiths alive."

      I object to the fact that some people do it at the expense of their children. We get 21st Century British, French, American children, living in the land of their birth and citizenship, being brought up in cultures from 19th Century Subcontinent or North Africa, or 17th Century Poland. Denying children the opportunity and background to be fully part of mainstream society is both cruel and unjust.

      Here's one of the bizarre results of that sort of thing.

      link to

      [ Mods, PLEASE put “Reply” buttons next to each comment. Having to scroll dozens of posts above the one I want to reply to to find a button is really frustrating. Thanks! :-) ]

      Please, please, PLEASE!

    • " mooser is firmly opposed to dialogue"

      And yet we get some pretty snappy dialogue from him.

    • "Yonah has never married"

      He'd better watch out that he isn't kidnapped and forced into marriage by one of those predatory Gentile women.

    • Don't forget Brian Gould. He was a New Zealander. I don't know whether he had dual NZ/British citizenship or not, but as a Commonwealth citizen he was eligible without British citizenship.

      Several of our Australian MPs and Senators are foreign born (including PMs Gillard and Abbott) but they were required to renounce their other citizenships before they ran for office.

      There is some question about whether Abbott ever did renounce his British citizenship!

    • Interesting.

      Britain is pretty free on that score. An MP has to be a British citizen or citizen of a Commonwealth country or the Republic of Ireland. As far as I can tell, any number of additional citizenships is permissible.

      Australia is very strict. Australian nationality only for Federal MPs. (States have different rules.)

    • "Oh God, Gentile women haven’t started kidnapping us, have they?"

      Could be. In the diaspora, you are never safe from persecution by Gentiles.

    • Your members of Congress are allowed to have dual citizenship?

  • The New England Patriots and Israel
    • "you should be the ones explaining..."

      In other words, you cannot tell us more because you do not know.

    • "And the Palestinians have had opportunity to improve their situation and have wasted it provoking more conflict instead. "

      Please tell us more about that opportunity.

  • Lawrence Summers says BDS movement is 'persecuting' Israel
    • Even if they do learn the "no comma after subject clause" rule.

      Incidentally, I was browsing through my copy of Heidegger's Being and Time (as one does) and I was horrified to see the translators had committed that error. Clearly an existential threat there.

    • "No doubt students preparing papers on the relevant social pathologies will be much enlightened by your offerings on the various subjects you cover. "

      The poor dears!

      If they read your archive, Mooser, they will spend so much time laughing that they will be unable to complete their PhDs.

      If they read mine, they will fall into despair, overcome by the recognition of their own intellectual inferiority.

    • "The holocaust and the events since then proved Hertzl’s point that the alternative to Israel is the death of the Jewish population of earth. There are lots of less destructive ways to handle the Palestinian displacement than that."

      The Holocaust didn't kill all Jews. Lots of Jews survived because they lived in countries that the Nazis couldn't reach. And it was over by the time Israel was created and the Zionists started seriously persecuting Palestinians.

      If you are arguing that Israel is necessary to provide a shelter from possible future holocausts, then:

      1. You are saying that Jews are so much more important than other people that they are justified in taking Palestine and pushing out the Palestinians just to have a safe place for Jews. You are saying that the real suffering of Palestinians is not as important as the possible (but not actually happening) suffering of Jews. This is just going back to the basic claim of Zionists: "We matter and you don't".

      It is downright immoral.

      (The establishment of Israel did not stop the suffering of German Jews, and it caused the suffering of Iraqi Jews.)

      2. Morality aside, it is absurd to set up a "shelter" from possible enemies in a way that guarantees the creation of new real enemies.

    • "RoHa, you should be ashamed of yourself. This is a basic Hasbara point."

      I am covered with rue.

      " Jews are on the verge of non-existence because they have only one. Thus we need to cut them some slack."

      We had better cut the Mongols and the Japanese some slack as well, since they have only one state each, and so are presumably on the verge of non-existence as well. Not the Koreans, though. They've got two states.

    • "what conditions must a group fulfil in order to have national rights?

      1) A territory in which they are a population or a key component of the population
      2) The ability to hold and defend that territory against other claimants (weaker than political autonomy, a nation can be part of an empire)."

      Unusual. A right that is only held by those with the power to enforce it. If the people cannot enforce their claim, they have no right to set up a state. This is contrary to the standard idea of a right. Rights are usually held to exist regardless of whether they can be enforced or not. Here the distinction between might and right is collapsed. The might is required for the right to exist.

      Also, it has the interesting implications that a group who fails to effectively defend their claim loses their national rights, and that the mere existence of a rival claimant who is more powerful, and therefore, who cannot be defended against, annuls the national rights. If we accept this implication, it seems that only the few, most powerful groups, have national rights.

      It is clear, then that Jews in general did not have national rights (qua Jews) for many centuries before Zionism, since they had neither territory nor the power to enforce. (English Jews had national rights as Englishmen, of course, so not all Jews would have lacked national rights.) If Jews had national rights (qua Jews) in ancient times, clearly those rights lapsed.

      Even Jews in Palestine did not have national rights until the time they had the military muscle to take over the place.

      This raises an interesting question. When the Zionists started planning to take over Palestine, they did not have national rights. What other right, then, did they have to take over Palestine?

      "Even if the putative Jewish national rights exist, and have not lapsed, why should they be exercised at the expense of other people.

      If the Palestinians were a people at the time of Jewish immigration it wouldn’t have been successful."

      I wrote "people", not "a people". Individual human beings were killed, raped, robbed, and driven from their homes in order for the "national rights" to be exercised. I will contend that was too high a price. I will further contend that the suffering Israel Jews inflict now is too high a price.

      Incidentally, how do you come to the conclusion that if the Palestinians had been "a people", the Zionists would not have succeeded? The Maoris were "a people" in your sense, but they were not able to prevent the British from taking over.

    • "Doesn’t this website confirm these crazy suspicions?"

      No, but those crazy people probably think it does.

    • "The doctrine that Jews should be forever disenfranchised from national rights because a century ago they missed the starting gun is bogus."

      Now you don't expect that to go unchallenged, do you?

      1. What do you mean by "national rights"?

      2. Why do you think that there are any such rights?

      3. Assuming that they are some sort of group right, what conditions must a group fulfil in order to have national rights?
      (This is likely to be a tough question to answer. You will have to fine-tune those conditions pretty carefully. Make them too loose, and you include stamp collectors and the much-loved West Brisbane Cheesecake Photographers Club. Make them too tight, and you will end up saying that only Jews have national rights, which would make your claim tautologous. And MHughes will argue against the general notion of group rights.)

      4. Why do you think that such rights cannot lapse if not exercised at a particular time?

      5. Even if the putative Jewish national rights exist, and have not lapsed, why should they be exercised at the expense of other people. Can we not say that they are outweighed by the greater moral requirements of non-maleficence, justice, and beneficence?

      6. Previous you seem to have taken an "injustice happens - suck it up" line. Even if the putative Jewish national rights exist, and have not lapsed, why should we not use that line when refusing to acknowledge a Jewish state?

      ' “Other people’s lands” is the fundamental name calling in that it argues that Jews are permanently illegitimate forever the bastards of humanity. '

      British lands are as much the lands of British Jews as they are of British Christians, Danish lands are as much the lands of Danish Jews as they are of Danish Christians, and so on. Why are Palestinian lands necessary to save Jews from being "permanently illegitimate forever the bastards of humanity"? (Whatever that phrase is supposed to mean.)

    • And he drags in that "world’s only Jewish state" line again.
      What moral significance is that status supposed to have?

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