Commenter Profile

Total number of comments: 7226 (since 2009-12-17 04:46:00)

Showing comments 7226 - 7201

  • Jeffrey Goldberg is Jewish
    • “I consider Phil’s relationship to the jews problematic”

      Phil and the Jews need to sort out their relationship problems. They should find a counsellor with dangly earrings and a droopy Indian skirt, sit down together, and discuss everything.

  • Clues to the end of the world shared during final 2016 presidential debate
    • Good comment, gamal.

      Mr Duterte should expect a visit from Ms Nuland, at least. And he should stay out of Elm Street.

    • One would hope that the General has studied all the intelligence reports on Russian military capabilities.

      But history shows that incompetence and idiocy are frequently combined with high military rank.

  • Trump is losing the Israel vote almost as bad as he is losing in New York
  • Lesson from Kahane and Trump -- ideology outlives the ideologue
    • War mongers.

      Damned predictive text.


      If what the NATO diplomat says is true, this suggests that Russia is not planning an invasion of Poland and the Baltic countries in the next few weeks. Perhaps the squawking war mangers of those countries could give it a rest, at least until Russia is finished in Syria.

  • New ad campaign in college papers calls out Israeli leaders' bigotry against Palestinians
    • There are two assumptions in play.

      (1) Anti-Semitism is single, unified, view.
      (2) Anti-Semitism is bad.

      But if we question 1, and recognize multiple anti-Semitisms, then 2 comes into question.
      I suspect this will shock some readers, but bear with the argument.

      Person A is prejudiced against Jews because his church taught him Jews are Christ killers.
      Person B is prejudiced against Jews because he believes that Jewish bankers and financiers are parasites on him and his country.

      Although these views are quite different in origin*, they are both subsumed under the blanket term “anti-Semitism”. (I, however, would call them “types of anti-Semitism”. )

      Person C takes an anti-Zionist and anti-Israel view, based on the immorality of Zionism.

      Person C’s view is also classed (by Zionists and their stooges) as anti-Semitism.

      But C’s view is morally correct. It is not bad.

      Thus, the Zionists and their stooges have led us to the position where we can say “This anti-Semitism is not bad, but actually good.”

      Of course, since anti-Semitism is a blanket term, this carries the risk that people will start thinking that all anti-Semitism is good. To avoid this risk, we have, I think, three choices.

      The first is to declare C’s view morally mistaken, and say that it is bad. But this involves a rejection of common morality.

      The second is to stop classing C’s view as anti-Semitism. But this means that the Zionists lose a propaganda ploy.

      The third is to acknowledge that there are multiple anti-Semitisms. But this vitiates the force of the “anti-Semite” accusation.

      I don’t know whether the Zionists recognize the difficulty, but, since they already reject common morality, the first choice seems to be their current preference.

      (*It is quite possible for both these prejudices to be held by the same person, but they need not be. A may have no ideas about finance at all, while B may be an atheist.)

    • How many people will read these ads as criticism of the Israeli leaders, and how many will read them as endorsements or as guides on how think about Palestinians?

    • "No other minority is treated in such a fashion"

      It seems to me that I have seen many minorities, gay people, and women treated in that way.

  • Trump and Clinton blast UNESCO statement on Jerusalem
    • "Trump and Clinton blast UNESCO statement on Jerusalem"

      Of course they did. They are running for President of the US.

      'UNESCO included a paragraph stating the “importance of the Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls for the three monotheistic religions.” '

      Someone should tell UNESCO that there are more than three.

  • Necessary Transformations: Ending the claim to exclusivity
  • Despite groping revelations, Israeli-American Trump supporter says all five of his daughters will vote Trump
    • I'm pretty sure Netanyahu played no part in sending American forces into Vietnam, and I can't see his influence in America's current posturing towards China.

    • Trump's hair trigger temper? Scott Adams begins this analysis of Trump by asking when you last saw him punch anyone on the nose.

      link to

      I will ask when you last knew of him killing someone. I can't even remember an accusation, though perhaps you can. (He's a big businessman. Surely he's had someone whacked.)

      Trump just might start a war or two. But Hillary (who is surrounded by not just the corpses of people who inconvenienced her, but also by the corpses of her war victims) will almost certainly start more wars.

      Perhaps Trump is this mysoginist, racist, rapist, who will plunge America even deeper into red-neckery.

      I don't care.

      The world needs a rest from America's wars, and if Trump is what it takes, then so be it.

    • "then this country deserves to be washed away."

      You don't say which country you mean by "this country", but, whichever one it is, it won't be the only one washed away by Hillary's wars.

    • They are clearly trying to throw as much dirt at Trump as possible, so I have doubts about all these stories of him being a serial groper.

      But even if the stories are true, I can't convince myself that groping women is as bad as blowing them to pieces, and Trump seems less likely to do that than Hilary.

  • Destruction of Israel is theme in new Foer novel, and no one seems to care all that much
    • "the stories it generates are not all that helpful to others in charting their lives, which after all is the business of a novel."

      The business of some novels. Some are simply written to entertain.

  • 'State of Terror,' by Thomas Suárez
  • The battle over Obama's legacy, featuring Netanyahu, Zogby, liberal Zionists, and 88 senators
    • If this goes on, the entire US will consist of nothing but an aggregation of presidential libraries. Who, then, will be able to pay for the upkeep?

      Would it not be better to shove all these papers into a couple of cardboard boxes and store them in a back room of the National Archives? There will only be about seven people a century who will actually want to read any part of the stuff.

  • The Jewish confession on a future Yom Kippur
  • Why I left the cult
    • I see nothing to make me change my idea, but mine is an outsider's view. If someone with a bit of inside knowledge were to pass it on, that could be a reason for me to change.

    • And in the hope that, if I am wrong, someone will correct me.

    • I prefer Sailor Moon, but I'd get arrested if I told you why.

    • Page: 72
    • "It’s human psychology once you have been abused, to feel that you are no longer the same as everyone else. "

      1. The majority of living Jews, including Israeli Jews, have never been abused, oppressed, or persecuted by Gentiles.

      2. I thought that the belief that you are not, and never were, the same as everyone else was a core principle of Jewishness. In my opinion, instilling this belief is a form of abuse.

  • No responsibility. No morality. No comment. No boycott.
    • Jewish ethics? Jewish values? "The well-maintained Jewish moral compass"?

      I see what appears to be the majority of the world's Jews supporting Israel, supporting tribal solidarity over decency and common humanity, and I find myself thinking that these actions show exactly what the vaunted Jewish values really are.

      The values that Robert Cohen wants Jews to follow are the universal, compassionate, humanitarian, values accepted by Stoics, Confucians, Buddhists, and many others.

  • NetanyaBOO!: Page Six punching bag Benjamin Netanyahu heckled at 'Hamilton'
  • In full page NYT ad, liberal Zionist group calls for ethnic segregation to retain Jewish majority within Israel
    • " the iconography in question does seem to suggest that the Egyptians of that tine thought of the people of Canaan as fairly homogeneous in culture,"

      I have no doubt that there were experts who knew exactly who was who, but I am also pretty sure that the Egyptian establishment, and Egyptians in general, simply thought of them as "those trouble-making Northern buggers, with their unpronounceable names, weird customs, and disgusting personal habits."

      (I don't know if you spell that with an owl or a vulture.)

      But, as you said else where, "These facts are not much of a foundation for a right to exclude Palestinians in the 20th century, are they?"

      Do let me know how Davies responds to Davidovits.

    • The Merneptah Stele isn't a major part of my bedside reading, so I looked it up.

      link to

      According to Wikipedia (for what that's worth) it was discovered by Flinders Petrie. It was translated for him by Spielberg (who was, no doubt, gathering local colour for Raiders of the Lost Ark ) and they were both terribly excited to see that it made the earliest known reference to Israel. (It seems, though, the Israel was not on the same cultural level as the Canaanites. They were referred to as cities, whereas Israel was referred to as a tribe. )

      But according to Davidovits, here,

      link to

      the alleged mention of Israel comes from mistakenly reading owl as vulture. (And I'm sure we've all done that at one time or another.) When read as owl, the reference to Israel disappears.

      I cannot say whether Davidovits is correct, but, if he is, the problem discussed here

      link to

      also disappears.

      No doubt this has profound implications for the moral and political status of the Palestinians in the twenty first century.

  • Palestinian fishermen struggle to survive next door to Netanyahu's palatial suburb
    • Fewer kids.

      And if it is true that the Ghawarnah tribe moved into Palestine in the mid 1880s, then they have at least as much right to live there as the Jewish migrants who moved in later.

      (I would suggest more right, since they integrated with the local Palestinians and, it seems, had part of the territory named after them.

      If the maps showing their name pre-date the 1880s, then either they were there before the 1880s, or the changed their names to match the territory. Anyone got dates for the maps?)

  • NYU pro-Israel group blocks public from IDF terrorism talk at last minute
  • UC Berkeley reinstates Palestine class, rejecting pressure from pro-Israel groups
    • Yes, that is pretty much it, but, since they were Ancient Greek frogs, they pronounced the β more like b than v.

    • βρεκεκεκὲξ κοὰξ κοάξ,
      βρεκεκεκὲξ κοὰξ κοάξ.

    • "a stance defined as anti-Semitic by the U.S. State Department."

      And why should anyone give a hoot for the definitions of the U.S. State Department? Those dopes have hardly a glittering track record for being right about anything.

    • This was about as blatant an attempt at suppression as one is likely to see short of mobs burning books and thought police arresting dissidents. I am delighted that the attempt has failed.

      (And thanks, Wilson Dizard, for writing "descent" instead of "heritage".)

  • US aid deal gives green light to Israel's erasure of Palestine
    • For all his lauding of mists and mellow fruitfulness, he kept catching cold, and, ultimately, TB. Ended up going to Rome for the warmer climate, but too late.

    • Incidentally, Annie, what has happened to the user profiles?

    • Probably not happy because he's British. The combination of climate and history has taught the British that gloom is the natural state of affairs, and they feel uncomfortable when anything threatens to lift their depression.

  • 'Shame on you,' Israel, for turning Obama 'into some Jew hater,' Tom Friedman says
  • Amos Oz would never stand in the street in Tel Aviv shouting 'Kill all the Arabs'
    • "Migration of Jews through Europe is well documented. To deny it is to deny the entire history of Western Civilization."

      Nonsense. It would just be to deny a portion of European history, just as denying the migration of Gypsies would be denying a portion of European history.

    • "This site is not about you."

      It wasn't in the old Pre-Raphaelite days, but surely it should be now.

      What could be more important than Raphael's tortured "self-identity"?

  • Dozens of Spanish cities declare themselves ‘Free of Israeli Apartheid’
    • "Actually, the Jews are the indigenous people of the area. Try to disprove that fact."

      Disproof is a tall order, but I do have an old book, supposedly written by and highly esteemed by Jews, which seems to suggest that Jews are the descendants of guy called Abraham, who moved in from what is now called Iraq and bought a chunk of land from the indigenous locals. Or have I misunderstood the story?

    • "I don’t pretend to be the arbiter of language "

      That's my job, of course.

  • Why segregation is the single most important issue in Israel, and practical ways to confront it
    • " if all countries were obligated to extend citizenship to refugees it would be very difficult to find host nations."

      Agreed. But I am only arguing for granting citizenship to children born in the country, not to all refugees.

      (And, as you know, I advocate strict conditions on both refugees and immigrants - learn the language, obey the laws, respect and try to follow the culture and the less repellent of the customs of the host/new country, do not form separate "communities".)

      "the moral obligation is place on the nation of origin."

      But in this case the nation of origin (or, rather, its successor) refuses to take up, or even acknowledge, that obligation. I have to ask how many generations of Palestinian refugees must remain effectively stateless while we are waiting for a little common decency from the Israelis? The longer we wait, the more we are adding injustice to injustice.

    • "nations hosting refugees, by granting citizenship to refugees, alleviates that moral obligation of countries to allow the return of those refugees to their country of origin."

      It may "alleviate" the moral obligation, but I would contend that that it does not remove that obligation.

      " what you consider right or wrong. that doesn’t make it law"

      I know that. I explicitly said that I was referring to morality, not law.

      "but it doesn’t deny them US citizenship or as you stated “any” citizenship"

      O.K. I'll amend that to "denying them any automatic, guaranteed, citizenship". To get Paraguayan or Singaporean or any other citizenship, most of the refugees would have to apply for it, and with no certainty of getting it.

    • Sorry to have taken so long in responding, Annie. I have been travelling, and had to change my travel plans part way through.

      Thanks to the brackets, it was not clear that by "native" you meant "indigenous", but let that pass. If "indigenous" is "originating or occurring naturally in a particular place", I have to say that I cannot think of a more natural way of originating in a place than being born there.

      But the term "indigenous people" usually refers to the descendants of the first wave of immigrants into an area with no human residents. In many countries, Lebanon included, there have been many waves of immigrants, and they have interbred, so that it is impossible to decide who is a descendant of the first wave. The distinction in Lebanese law is actually between people who are descendants of Lebanese citizens and people who are not descendants of Lebanese citizens.

      Law notwithstanding, I consider that everyone has a moral right to citizenship in the country of birth. However, I will just argue for the children of the Palestinian refugees.

      From the concept of human equally, I derive the idea that everyone has a right to be a full member of a polity. Under current arrangements, that means full citizenship in a functioning country. Since the Palestinian children in question have (on current showing) little chance of going to any sort of functioning Palestine, restricting them to Palestinian citizenship is pretty much denying them any citizenship. But Lebanon is the country they are born into, where they will spend their formative years, and where they are likely to spend a good deal of their lives. It seems to me that this gives them the moral right to Lebanese citizenship.

    • I have to disagree with you there, Annie. Being born in the country is the very definition of "native born". What else could make a person "native born"?

      Of course, you are correct in saying that being native born does not necessarily give a legal right to citizenship, since the legal rights vary from country to country, but I would suggest that it gives a moral right.

      In the case of the Palestinian refugees and their descendants, I would argue that they also have a moral right to Palestinian citizenship. I base the right for the descendants a combination of factors. The first is that they can show that they are descended from Palestian citizens with the right of abode. The second is that, as echinococcus suggests, denying them such a right would be tantamount to legitimising the Zionist crime.

      (Zionists should note that the vast majority of the foreign born Zionist invaders can not show that they are descended from citizens of any state on that territory, let alone that their ancestors were expelled from the territory.)

  • After building a protest movement, West Bank village of Nabi Saleh steps back from weekly Friday protests
    • I think you are absolutely correct about this. Equal rights for all within the territory of Palestine is the way to go, and the Palestinians should work for that. But, as you also note, they would have to convince the cruel and racist Israeli Jews to change their attitudes. No easy task.

  • The United States of Innocence -- the worldview of Major Todd Pierce (retired), Part 2
    • "Overall, our “system” — gov’t-media-entertainment-corporations — has been ignoring or greatly underplaying the dangers of global warming/climate change (GWCC)"

      Actually, the gov’t-media-entertainment-corporations have been greatly exaggerating the dangers. The world, and the human race, have done well in warm periods. It is the ice ages that kill.

      "and the consequential need for immediate action to forestall GWCC. "

      Climate change is a natural process. Attempting to forestall it wastes effort that would be better used in adapting to it.

  • Many leftwing Israelis are leaving the country -- 'Forward' breaks an important story
    • So you think the Arabs should emulate the bad behaviour of the Jews and set up a society within a society.

      How would this gain them their full rights, in what is their own country?

      The Gentiles tolerated this when the Jews did it, but would the Israeli Jews allow the Arabs to do it? Especially when there are people like you who want to destroy the mosques and churches.

    • "The Arabs should seek a nation within the nation of Israel; because a two state agreement is never going to happen, ever. "

      I don't understand what you mean by this. How can the Arabs create a nation within Israel if a two state agreement is impossible? Regardless of which bit of Israel the nation is created in, it will be a second state.

  • Liberal Zionists see 'window of opportunity' for two states in last three months of Obama administration
    • Raphael,

      "I got into all this Jewishness stuff, years later, in my life."

      You would have done better to put you efforts into learning punctuation. It is much more important, much more useful, much more moral and socially beneficial, and far, far, better for your soul.

    • "I believe that a two state solution is really the only path to resolve this conflict, where one preserves both the Jewish and democratic nature of Israel "

      But why is it necessary to preserve the Jewish nature of Israel?

      "and provides freedom, dignity and sovereignty to the Palestinians "

      Would the Palestinians not have sovereignty as full, equal citizens of a unified state?

  • Marc Lynch warns against the U.S. escalation in Syria
  • Daniel Berrigan's 1973 prophecy: Israel is becoming 'the tomb of the Jewish soul'
    • Xanadou,


      I wholeheartedly applaud every idea in this comment. I have made a copy, and will, eventually, quote it at length and pretend it is mine.

    • "I think I read that militant Arabs, barbaric Arabs in nature purposely built the mosques over key Hebrew/Israelite sites. "

      And you only have to look at the Dome of the Rock to see that it is a product of primitive barbarians

      "See the Dome of the Rock it was built over Solomon’s Temple. "

      Well, Solomon didn't need it any more, did he? But the story I know is that the Dome of the Rock is built over the Temple of Jupiter Optimus Maximus in Aelia Capitolina.

    • If there is nothing under it, we just put it back together again, and no harm done. After all, it's made of Lego, isn't it?

    • Mooser, don't say such terrible things. I remember 1973 well, so it can only have been a year or two ago.

  • Trump team campaigns hard for votes one place it stands to do well -- Israeli settlements
    • Curses! Foiled again! You have exposed my cunning plan.

    • It would be interesting, and perhaps even useful, to know how many are British, Australian, and so forth.

    • Yonah, I don't know whether English is your first language or not, but here are two rules you should know. They apply to British, American, Australian, and even Canadian English.

      First rule. There are two kinds of relative clause in English - defining and non defining.

      link to

      The rule is that a defining relative clause has no commas at all, and a non-defining relative clause has two, one preceding and the other following. If "who are most passionately opposed to the iran nuclear pact" is defining, then it should not be followed by a comma. If it is non-defining, then there should be a comma after "Israel" as well as after "pact".

      Second rule. A subject clause is not followed by a comma.

      "The cat sat on the mat."
      No comma between the subject ("the cat") and the verb ("sat").

      "The cat with curly whiskers sat on the mat."
      No comma between the subject clause ("the cat with curly whiskers") and the verb ("sat").

      "The cat with a tendency to sneeze violently on Thursdays sat on the mat."
      No comma between the subject clause ("the cat with curly a tendency to sneeze violently on Thursdays") and the verb ("sat").

      The punctuation rules in other languages may well be different, and I can only hope the poor benighted souls who have to use those languages are well versed in the punctuation rules of those languages. However, when you are writing English, it is the English rules that are to be followed.

      They are not difficult.

    • A politician using subterfuge to gain votes? I've never heard the like!

  • Church of Sweden explores BDS as 'only chance to liberate Palestinians and Israeli Jews'
  • Huma Abedin dumps Anthony Weiner, occupation denier
    • Marnie, if God were at all compassionate, we wouldn't get fat, and bald, and old, and die. And chocolate cake would be health food.

    • My says she has found the perfect husband as well. The problem is that he's married to someone else, and she's stuck with me.

  • 'Everything that we have done since 9/11 is wrong' -- the worldview of Major Todd Pierce (Retired)
  • Critiques not fit to print: Students and allies respond to 'NYT' coverage of Palestine activism on campus
    • Exactly, Froggy.

      When I read this stuff about "microaggressions" and "safe spaces" and so forth, even I, as delicate a flower as ever blossomed in my generation, cannot forbear from muttering "bunch of big sooks".

  • Liel Leibovitz wants to excommunicate most American Jews, beginning with Beinart
    • Echinococcus, I keep trying to respond to your question, but every response I make gets cut. I don't know why.

    • No harm in swearing to do good things, and no harm in swearing that to Apollo. He's a pretty good God, as they go. I don't recall him drowning nearly everyone or encouraging mass slaughter.

      (He encourages philosophy, science, and music, as well as medicine, so it should be no surprise to you that I think highly of him.)

    • "The idea is that babies are born with different loyalties and with different expectations, directed at them."

      And there is a fine example of a misleading comma. The comma separates the "directed at them" from the "loyalties and expectations", and so gives the impression that the babies are born holding the loyalties and expectations. Yet what is really meant is that the loyalties and expectations are held by the parents.

    • It does not matter whether he is famous or powerful. The important issue is whether what he says is interesting and worth thinking about. Is it true and not trivial?

    • This Leibovitz person has no moral sense.

      If "real" Judaism is at odds with universal moral values, then one is morally obliged to give up "real" Judaism. Of course, this does not mean that one is obliged to give up other forms of Judaism, but nor is there an obligation to follow any sort of Judaism.

      "Ethnicity is what’s left, says Leibovitz; and that special feeling of being God’s chosen people; and Jewish law."

      Forget about common humanity, and enjoy that feeling!

      " Jews did not become what they are today one day long ago at the foot of Mt. Sinai. "

      That's a relief. I was beginning to think that Mooser was a lot older that me.

  • Many Clinton Foundation donors oppose BDS-- and so does Clinton
  • 'Democracy' and 'terrorism' and the parameters of thinkable thought
  • Clinton Foundation's 'good friend' Bahrain quashed Arab spring without protest from Sec'y Clinton
    • Another damned video. I refuse to waste my time listening to some talking head wurfling on about it when I can read the same information in a matter of seconds. If the ideas are worth knowing, they are worth writing down.

      You stress the difficulty in understanding racism, but I'm sure you don't mean to imply that I cannot know what racism is, for you tell me that I must acknowledge that it exists. I cannot acknowledge the existence of something if I do not have some idea of what it is.

      However, I gather that you think of racism as the discriminatory practices, rather than just the attitudes. This seems fair enough, and not difficult to understand at all. Nor is it so very different from what I previously thought.

    • Please enlighten me. I'm quite prepared to learn what racism is and what makes Trump racist. Perhaps you can start from here:

      "1Prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one’s own race is superior...

      1.1The belief that all members of each race possess characteristics, abilities, or qualities specific to that race, especially so as to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races..."

      link to

      For my part, I would question whether "the belief that one's own race is superior" is a necessary part of the concept, but I'm sure you will take up that issue as you elaborate.

      (I will, however, point out that, even though you might persuade me that Trump is as racist as he is reputed to be, I think a racist, mysogynist, etc. president who does not start wars with Russia and China, and who does not bomb the unmentionable out of black, brown, Muslim, etc. people is preferable to an unracist, feminist, etc. president who is enthusiastic about reducing the world to smoking piles of rubble.)

    • Mooser, I'm already a philosopher.

    • I'm not convinced that Trump is the racist monster that some people suggest. One point in his favour is that both the power elites and the poncey fashionable elites are against him. Nut I don't know whether he has the firmness to be a President. Has he whacked as many enemies as Hillary?

      But American politics are depressing, and will remain so until the Americans come to their senses and take me as their King.

      Another interesting comment from Scott Adams.

      link to

    • Interesting comment on Trump from Scott Adams.

      link to

      As I've said before, my main concern is which candidate is most likely to lead Australia into war with Russia and/or China.

  • Let's talk about Russian influence
    • Yonah, put down the riding crop. That horse is not resting.
      It has expired.
      It is bereft of life.
      It has checked out, bought the farm, dropped off the twig, kicked the bucket, carked it, and gone to join the choir invisible.
      It's dead.
      Stop flogging it.

    • I'm a bit dubious about this "4th most powerful conventional military" claim. China, Russia, and the US are the current big three, but India, both Koreas, Japan, and Turkey are pretty big hitters as well. Does Israel really outrank them?

    • "our current enemy, Russia."

      Not my current enemy. Russia hasn't done anything to me recently. What has Russia done to make it your enemy, hophmi?

  • A French, a Palestinian, and a black woman all wade into a pool
    • Test for what?

    • I admit that I am rather too attached to the grossly physical. Unlike those chaps in India, I cannot teleport. My cat can perform the feat with consummate ease, of course, and her diet consists almost totally of the flesh of animals. However, she doesn't eat pie, so that must be the deciding factor.

      (I grew up with cats, so I know their talents. When I told my son that they have invisibility cloaks, can see ghosts, and can teleport, he didn't believe me. He has a healthy, strong, scepticism. But, after three days with our new kitten, he admitted that his agéd father was, for once, telling the truth.)

    • "Krauss, are you saying that you don’t have any limits to your level of comfort with exposure?"

      No, he is saying that an argument that treats the voluntary as analogous with the involuntary is a really bad argument.

    • The Hungry Moths

      Poor hungry white moths
      That eat my love’s clothing,
      Who says very soon
      Ye’ll leave her with nothing,
      Here under the moon
      I make bold to persuade ye,
      Ye may eat all her clothes
      So ye leave me milady,

      Ronald McCuaig (1931)

  • A new milestone: BDS at the Olympics
    • He was a man who refused to shake the hand of an Israeli. But you want to make it about Jewishness.

      And what twisted reasoning leads you to say Marnie is standing up for the Egyptian dictatorship?

    • Eljay, the very thought is sufficient to give me an attack of the vapours.

  • The Palestine-Israel language trap
    • What about half an interest in looking at colons? Is semi-colonoscopy OK?

    • Crotchety, comma-obsessed Australian?

      I'm sure no such person exists.

    • I am indeed humbled. As you noticed, I inadvertently omitted the opening parenthesis in my explanation of the term "superior" man. My inadequate self-cultivation has not developed the virtue of attentiveness sufficiently.

    • "And if you are anti jewish, then why get upset when people call you antisemitic? "

      Usually, when people call you "anti-Semitic", they mean that you are an evil, irrational, bigot. This is rather irritating for the rational opponent of Jewishness.

      "Why not explicitly say, “I am antisemitic and I’m proud to be antisemitic "

      Being rational, as a rational opponent of Jewishness, is an achievement, but surely rationality is one of those minimal achievements, like walking in a straightish line when sober, that justifies only minimum pride.

      And yet, when I see how rare rationality is, I think that perhaps a bit more pride would be acceptable.

    • The Master did not say "The superior man remembers his opening parenthesis as well as his closing one", but he would have approved of the sentiment. He was an editor as well as a philosopher.

    • I'm back in Britain, dealing with estate matters, so I can't write the essay this topic deserves. I will just add some comments to the words of the Master and a blend of the Legge and Moffat translations.

      Zi Lu said, "The ruler of Wei has been waiting for you, in order with you to administer the government. What will you consider the first thing to be done?"

      The Master replied, "What is necessary is to rectify names/a correction of terminology."

      And correct punctuation, of course.

      "So! indeed!" said Zi Lu. "You are wide of the mark! Why must there be such rectification?"

      The Master said, "How uncultivated you are, You! A superior man, in regard to what he does not know, shows a cautious reserve.

      Think before speaking. Check facts are true and arguments are well-formed. The "superior man" (君子) is the exemplary person, the person we should all aspire to be.)

      If names be not correct, language is not in accordance with the truth of things/what is said cannot be followed.

      If language be not in accordance with the truth of things, affairs cannot be carried on to success. /If what is said cannot be followed, then work cannot be accomplished.

      This applies at many levels. If criticism of Israel is called "anti-Semitism", it will be condemned and rejected regardless of how well founded it may be. If mass murder is called "mowing the grass", it will not receive the condemnation it deserves. Eliminating moral judgement from language is as dangerous as making wrong moral judgments. Clear, careful thought is necessary, and correct use of language is part of that.

      When affairs cannot be carried on to success, proprieties/ritual and music will not flourish.

      Ritual and music are not just the standards and the foundation of the social order, they also serve to develop good character and moral behaviour. When they fail, when we no longer have moral standards, we no longer know what is right and wrong.

      When proprieties/ritual and music do not flourish, punishments will not be properly awarded.

      If we are uncertain about what is right and what is wrong, we must be uncertain about the principles and procedures needed to maintain a just society.

      When punishments are not properly awarded, the people do not know how to move hand or foot.

      And without those principles and procedures, society will fall into chaos.
      Therefore a superior man considers it necessary that the names he uses may be spoken appropriately, and also that what he speaks may be carried out appropriately.

      What the superior man requires is just that in his words there may be nothing incorrect."

      Correct use of language, calling things by the right names, is essential to intellectual clarity. Moral order requires intellectual order, so the superior man maintains his intellectual integrity.

      Analects, 13:3

    • Do you mean that some of those millions of genealogies that prove modern Israeli Jews are direct descendants of first Century Palestinian Jews might be fakes?

      Surely not!

  • Jill Stein defends BDS in CNN town hall
    • OK, hophmi, the article is anti-Semitic.
      So what?
      Tell what claims of fact in the article are untrue. Tell us what arguments are fallacious. Tell us what moral standards are breached.
      Those are the things that matter, not your whines about "anti-Semitism".

  • The politics of Jewish ethnocentrism
    • "this philosopher (Bernard Henri-Levi)"

      On behalf of MHughes and myself, I hereby make my usual protest at the insult.

    • Mooser, perhaps you should toss the book into the shredder. It sounds as though it is full of anti-Semitism.

      But check with hophmi first. He's the expert, and any minute now he will be answering my questions in order to give us better guidance.

    • Since we are indulging in cod group psychology, I will toss in a little unsubstantiated speculation of my own, based on my own well-substantiated ignorance of Jewishness.

      I have remarked before on the Zionist inability to understand that legality is not the same as morality. My speculation is that this stems from the Jewish concentration on Jewish Law as the guide to behaviour. Jews come to think that the Law is the true embodiment of everything that's excellent. It has no kind of fault or flaw, and they, the Jews, embody the Law. This attitude is then generalized to secular law, so that they believe that anything legal is acceptable.

      Of course, the existence of Jews who do recognise the distinction between the legal and the moral are a fine argument against this speculation. A more likely explanation is that the Zionists have no moral arguments, and so cling to such legal arguments as they can cobble together.

    • "I think that if any comment suggested the self destruction of Islam in the terms used to celebrate Judaism’s failed paradigm, that the commenter would be censored and if not, condemned for islamophobia."

      I'm sure someone would scream "Islamophobia", but I would, again, argue that was not a sufficient reason for banning it.

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