‘The left’ doesn’t matter; but its cowardice does

17 December 2013

6:02 PM

17 December 2013

6:02 PM

I know it’s not quite the year’s end. But I think the sweetest words I heard in 2013 are already set: ‘The left doesn’t really matter’. Those words were said to me by a pollster. The point he was making was that although the commentating classes obsess about the state of the left, it doesn’t really matter. Among the public as a whole only a handful of people take any interest in where the left does or doesn’t stand on issues and what this does or doesn’t mean.

If there is anyone who thinks that a shame they should just look at the contortions ‘the left’ is going through now over the issue of gender segregation. This is the process – which has been occurring on certain university campuses for some time and which a number of people, including colleagues of mine, have long highlighted – that consists of separating audiences according to gender. This segregation occurs because of the demands of some immoderate Muslims.


Anyhow – having been around as an issue for some time, the process has finally been picked up on more widely with such a head of steam that Channel 4 News has repeatedly focussed on the matter, there has been a public demonstration against such segregation, and now the Prime Minister himself has come out opposing it.

Which led me to spend some of the last hour reading the contorted posts and messages which self-described ‘leftists’ have been exchanging about all this and I think it is fair to say that there are several divides. A small number recognise that separating men from women in publicly funded institutions is a concerning and backward trend. Others disagree with that and (Muslim and non-Muslim) agree with that large number of people globally who believe that religion trumps women’s rights. Most interesting, though, are those who see that there is a problem with gender segregation but are fearful of saying so. The particular reason – and this really is a fascinating window into their minds – is that if they do oppose gender segregation they will put themselves in the same camp as certain ‘right-wing’ or ‘conservative’ people. Worse they will risk putting themselves on the same side of the argument as ‘right-wing’, ‘conservative’ people who are also male and possibly even have white skin. I discover that David Cameron and I are often cited as examples of where all this horror can lead.

Anyhow – as I say, it probably doesn’t matter very much. But it is a fascinating glimpse into what is not just a confused but (and I try to use the word sparingly) a perverted mindset. If you create your ideas of right and wrong according to how you think your peers might judge you, or what company they might then accuse you of keeping, it is highly unlikely that you will often find yourself in the right. The gender segregation issue shows this rather beautifully. We get to witness the sight of proud ‘liberals’ and ‘leftists’ desperately trying to find a way not to oppose a movement which is deeply hostile to the most basic rights of women. The reason? You may find yourself boosting a concern expressed by white conservative men.

I’m not desperately surprised of course. The same process has occurred plenty of times before. But as I read all this my mind wanders back over all those other issues which people like me – and David Cameron, on occasion – have spoken about over the years. Which other issues did we hold the left back on by daring to speak about? I think FGM (female genital mutilation) was almost certainly one. We are just about at the stage where the ‘left’ is no longer as worried as it once was about discussing FGM. And perhaps as they contort themselves over gender segregation that same left could cast their mind back over that debate and ask themselves a question. How many young girls’ clitorises had to be mutilated while they busily curated their left-wing credentials?

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Show comments
  • denise smith

    David Cameron is a coward and a bad man he is letting all these illegal migrants in and does not do nothing about just talk. He supports the EU and their agenda of mass immigration and getting rid of the Nation state. The left ally with them too historically they often have. He lets terrorists back in the country. Their just festering and growing and one day it is going to get really bad for our children, or maybe before that the way things are going, because of cowardly immoral leaders.on the left and right and in Nato and the EU who are only out for themselves. I am sick of them all and think a lot of people are.

  • global city

    The ideas of the New Left always have been pointless, but never irrelevant. Cameron has shaped the whole Tory modernising project round their soft edges.

    They are irrelevant to people’s every day lives and there isn’t a single vote in them… so in that context they are worse than irrelevant.

    Nice of formonitoring and anosrep to so readily identify Labour with the silly twisting sort of Left Murray describes.

  • formonitoring

    that would be the pollster who told you Miliband was leading Cameron by 10 points, three years after Gordon Brown was in No.10, right Douglas?
    One-term government. Who doesn’t matter?

  • anosrep

    Congratulations, Mr. Murray – you’ve achieved the remarkable feat of spending 666 words* saying absolutely nothing.

    * No, really, count them (or have your software do so).

    • Cosmo

      Mr. Murray could have just condensed it down to “the left are a bunch of posturing d*ck heads”. Either way he is right.

  • pdhan

    Business as usual; the only time conservatives talk about women’s rights is when they try to bash ‘leftists’ and their supposed intellectual inconsistencies. Like you care Douglas. Using ‘young girls’ clitorises’ for cheap political point scoring – nasty.

  • #NoFGM

    PS And if you want to consider the core rationale behind FGM and
    forced marriage etc, you might like also to support this Feminist Statement on
    FGM –
    – which very seriously points to the underlying power structures which oppress women at a fundamental level… and just happens to be written by an international group of socially conscious women. (You will note it has been supported by quite a lot of similar men, as well.)

  • #NoFGM

    Sorry to spoil things, but this is rather unpleasant nonsense, not least in terms of the grim realities of FGM and other ways (such as forced / slave / premature marriage) of oppressing and harming women.

    There are many on the Left who care very much about protecting little girls in Britain from FGM.

    If you would actually like to support these efforts, please add your voice to this e-petition to Enforce the UK Law on FGM: The Police and CPS to date have not managed to achieve one single prosecution (I hope a case will go to court soon). As far as I’m aware these are not Left-inclined institutions, but they are way behind eg the ‘socialist’ NHS in their response to this appalling cruelty.

    Please don’t try to manufacture shallow ‘Left’ / ‘Right’ contests about violence against women and girls. Everyone can do their part to make this history; and, whatever their politics, men are at least as important as women in doing this.

    Hilary Burrage

  • The Laughing Cavalier

    In a similar manner, many boys were abused in the Islington care homes while the ultra left wing Leaderette, Margaret Hodge refused to act.

  • greggf

    “Among the public as a whole only a handful of people take any interest in where the left does or doesn’t stand on issues and what this does or doesn’t mean.”

    There is some truth in this, although the issue you have taken up is part of a recent attempt to fuse the left with Islamism and may or may not develop.
    But “issues-politics” are still there and, for example, help explain why, although Britain has plenty of laws to deal with excesses of immigration, welfarism and education etc., many if not most are rarely enforced. Because most of the public sector employees running the services concerned are of the left and apply their “issues-politics” to the management and interpretation of the services with hardly a thought for the taxpayer. The left’s interpretation of the welfare state is not simply that of a safety net but a cradle-to-the-grave haven entitlement for all and sundry!

  • Cosmo

    Pat Condell hits the nail on the head, as usual.

  • Blazeaway

    The left is in thrall to islam and Antonio Gramsci explained why.

    They saw the working class as a busted flush and turned to other people/groups to undermine bourgeois society.

    Thus they have formed an alliance with some very reactionary people.

    The irony is that the islamists will turn on their friends. If the islamists ever come to power they will surely kill the left, feminists, gays etc.

    The left have to wake up to this.

    • hellosnackbar

      The astonishing thing about Gramscian political correctness is that Islamonausea(based on what one reads at is regarded as illegal by these so called progressive turds!
      Truth has become a modern corrupt irony!

  • Blazeaway

    I am no supporter of Nick Griffin but wasn’t he prosecuted for some ‘hate speech’ offence or other when he made allegations of FGM and also rape gangs?

    I stand to be corrected if necessary. But if true, what an indictment of the cultural mire our political and bureaucratic classes have led us to.

  • andy_gill

    Once again Douglas cuts to the heart of the matter. The reason so many obnoxious alien cultural practices are becoming widespread in the UK is the failure of the left – who largely control the media and academia – to oppose them.

    The left will abandon every last principle they ever held if defending it involves agreeing with a conservative white male – or giving Israel any credit.

    Gender equality, anti-racism, gay rights and the prinicple of national self-determination have all been sacrificed by the left to preserve their obscene alliance with Islamism.

  • James Lovelace

    “If you create your ideas of right and wrong according to how you think your peers might judge you, or what company they might then accuse you of keeping, it is highly unlikely that you will often find yourself in the right. ”

    Is this the same Douglas Murray, then Director of the Centre for Social Cohesion, who refused to even speak to the EDL or be seen in the same room as them, for fear of what others might say about him, his policies, and the company he keeps?

    • zestman


  • sardindukurup

    When Stlinists, Maoists, etc who call any one fascist and iit is taken as a fatwa by the liberals then the language has been corrupted and with it the politcal thinking.

  • jazz606

    I gave up being reasonable with lefties a long time ago. Nowadays I just wind them up…it isn’t hard.

  • Zimbalist

    The Left has virtually already won. When 50% of 16 year olds in Britain have no father living with them, when there are 200,000 abortions per year in Britain (yet no mainstream TV programme is allowed to let the public see what an abortion actually does/looks like), when politicians feel they cannot criticise the interpretation given to Islam by certain groups after fanatics inspired by that interpretation kill people, when two men may be considered by the law to be married, the Left pretty much has the field.

  • Eddie

    Agree totally. The left is morally bankrupt now and comprises a tiny number of state-funded fantasists (academics, especially). Their prattling lead and influence the Mob – all those bullies who hate free speech and individuality (unions, councils, the entire education system).

    The left has tied itself in knots because it feels it always has to support anyone with a dark skin and a religion (even if their views and values are practically fascistic or 11th century). The Left in the UK would be pure comedy if its racist, bigoted, dogmatic adherence to such absurdities didn’t hurt so many people – all those girls forced into marriage or victims of honour killings; all those children denied a good education through their comprehensive mess of a school system; all those unemployed people who lack a job or training because of mass immigration; all those homeless people unable to find anywhere to live because of the left’s ethno-philiac immigration-loving diversity-fetish fixation.

    Most people who vote Labour are not of the left of course – they just do so out of tradition and selfishness and tribal loyalty. No wonder the perpetually Labour-run north of England produces such great comedians!

    Worth mentioning however that this is a problem with the British left. In France, the left supports integration NOT segregation which the silly policy of multiculturalism has created and encouraged. There are some admirable French feminists who make those on the left in the UK look like the appeasers of Islamofascism which they are.

    British universities are a total disgrace anyway – I am not in the least surprised they pander to Islamists; after all, our home grown Islamic terrorists were radicalised at these negligent bomber-factories and continue to be so. The two Michaels who killed Lee Rigby studied al Greenwich University – one of the many former polys where Islamism and extremism festers happily in its bigoted filth, and all tolerated by a craven academic establishment who should share responsibility for the Islamic extremists their negligence and tolerance of the intolerable (if it has a brown face and a religion) produce by the thousand.

  • StephanieJCW

    “Which other issues did we hold the left back on by daring to speak about? I think FGM (female genital mutilation) was almost certainly one.”

    It’s illegal – what more do you want them to say? I don’t really hear the Right speaking about FGM either. You are rather childish aren’t you.

    • C_monsta

      What more do you want them to say??! How about an uproar condemning the mutilation and suffering of thousands of children in the UK through mindless cultural practices?

  • Fergus Pickering

    When my daughter was about twelve she found herself in a minority of one at her girls’grammar school over cultural relativism. The issue of genital mutlation, then called female circumcision, came up. These girls (not all middle class I hasten to add) thought it was OK if your culture said it was OK. They also thought all tories wicked. When my daughter protested that her parents weren’t wicked they were nonpllussed, since they knew us, and didn’t think so either. Of course some of their parents were Tories too but it hadn’t come up, don’t you know. My daughter is now twenty-six.and wil probably note vote Tory (what twenty-six year old who is not a poltics wonk, would ever do so. I certainly didn’t. I bought the New Statesman and all that. Follies of youth!

    It’s the grown-up Leftists I can’t abide. Nick Clegg should be roasted over a slow flame..

    • StephanieJCW

      “These girls (not all middle class I hasten to add) thought it was OK if your culture said it was OK.”

      Hardly surprising. Many people use that defence of male genital mutilation. So some people will apply it to women too.

      • Eddie

        Yes, but illegality seems to be tolerated by the authorities, the police, every cowardly little jobsworth in the state-funded hierarchy, so long as it’s done by those with a brown face who belong to a minority religion – these are the new untouchables, immune to criticism or attack because those who do so and point out the reality of the Emperor’s nakedness, are immediately accused of racism and so-called ‘Islamophobia’.
        And yes, you are right, all parts of our absurd political spectrum support such a way of behaving. Anyone who speaks the truth about Muslim communities can expect to get disciplined by their party and accused of not worshipping at the diversity altar as all good little sheep should.

        • StephanieJCW

          Where is the evidence that FGM is being tolerated by all those you mention. And no – lack of prosecution is not evidence of something being tolerated.

          For starters you need evidence that a girl has been subjected to FGM. How do we obtain that – impose genital checks on all brown girls at school? I’m being serious what would you implement to identify all girls who have had their genitals altered / mutilated etc?

          Then point 2) once you do that – how do you convince then to identify their assailant and, testify against their parents, grand parents etc?

          If there is an easy way of tackling those problems I ask you to let the appropriate authorities know.

          • crosscop

            “How do we obtain that – impose genital checks on all brown girls at school?”
            Yes. Then kick out the entire family.

          • bigmax

            “How do we obtain that – impose genital checks on all brown girls at school?”

            They do that in France. It’s a medical check done by a nurse. I don’t know if it’s restricted to “brown” girls as you put it, or all girls undergo this medical check.

          • Penny

            While I take your points, Stephanie, one would think that the appropriate authorities already know how to tackle the problems.

            If we have made the practice illegal, then it would be reasonable to assume those who drafted such a law had at least an idea as to its practical application.

            I’d imagine it is the fact that a law exists, and yet seldom (if ever) applied,that triggered the recent EDM’s by MP’s.

            • Eddie

              There have been prosecutions in France – but they do not worship multiculturalism as we do and prefer integration (good for them – they are right!).
              Just to add: much abuse is NOT done by men either (the usual feminist assumption); it is older women who force girls into marriage and force them to have FGM. Even ‘arranged’ marriages are in effect forced by pressure from families, Those middle-age women are the ones to target; I doubt most Muslim men care either way.

              • Penny

                Yes, I know it’s very often the women who see this as a necessity – but I’ve also heard it recommended by Clerics. I remember listening to a reporter interviewing Egyptian women, and their beliefs about why it must be done don’t lend themselves to modern knowledge!

                Chinese women no longer have their feet painfully bound and disfigured; Indian women aren’t climbing on suttee pyres. There are other practices that have been successfully outlawed – although I do think this particular one is less easy to prosecute due to difficulties in detection. I don’t think all girls should be forced to undergo some kind of genital inspection simply because mutiliation is the practice of a sub-group of a minority. Social services already have an *at risk* register, and medical inspections to check for abuse already exist so I’m not sure why we cannot add FGM to the list of physical abuses.

                • Eddie

                  No doubt plenty of people would recommend slavery too, if you asked them.
                  Tradition is all it is; clerics are biased of course, and hardly empirical research: that shows that in hot sandy countries in an age BEFORE water and hygiene, circumcision prevented infection. Some stats from 20th century wars here too with troops in north Africa.
                  But really, a foreskin is a necessary part of the male body. to remove it for dubious reasons, and because ancestors did it, is no reason to do it.
                  Add to that the fact that operations can and do go wrong, and the case against is overwhelming.

                • Penny

                  Eddie – re: “And why the F do women think they can speak with authority..” You write as if I am attempting authority – but as I very clearly said above “only a circumcised man could say whether circumcision has any long term negative effects…”.

                  I don’t know why on this particular issue you’re getting het up about women. I very much doubt the decision to circumcise is solely that of a mother. I also doubt that a pro-circumcision mother would get her way in the face of an anti-circumcision father.

                  Several times now you’ve asked who are women to comment on male circumcision. Men – including yourself – are commenting on FGM.

                  I am allowed to comment based not on experience (obviously!) but because I’ve not come across men thinking of starting a campaign against circumcision.

                  I am allowed to comment because I know what is involved in both circumcision and FGM and to even say they are comparable is, in my view, trivialising FGM.

                • Eddie

                  But I do not believe a man circumcised at birth, whose penis is desensitised because a thick layer of skin has built up over its tip (to protect the now damaged organ) can know either – he has nothing to compare his unlubricated numb organ too.
                  Males need a foreskin as we need eyelids. Its removal should be illegal.
                  Of coursem in countries where it is common – the USA< Australia – the look of a circumcised penis is normalised, as once bound feet and extended necks were normalised in other cultures.
                  There is a big campaign against circumcision in the USA. In Britain now, because no more than 5% are circumcised (esp if you don't count Muslims).

          • Eddie

            Plenty of evidence – just contact any feminist group to get some. The authorities know abuse like this (and much else besides) happens in many ethnic minority families and cultures, with girls often being sent overseas for FGM or underage or forced marriage. Many Asian girls vanish from school aged 13 (their pc hypocrite teachers do nothing – for fear of being called racist and because they have been brainwashed into celebrating diversity and respecting any ethnic and religious culture even if it is vile).
            Maybe you just don’t want to believe there is a rotten heart in so many UK ethnic communities?
            Put it this way: if whites behaved like this, the authorities and police would be down on them like a tonne of bricks. But a dark skin and a religion works wonders eh? Oversensitivity from the diversity-trained police and authorities make them tolerate the intolerable if done by those of minority races and religions. That is actually racism – not treating those of different races equally in law.
            Maybe we do need to interfere more in children’s lives to prevent abuse – maybe we should have cameras in mosques and churches? Maybe the police could spend their time in a more useful way by targeting certain groups (instead of trying to boost their stats by arresting those who have squabbles online).

          • Daniel Maris

            Of course lack of prosecution in relation to a crime is evidence of toleration.

            In Sweden I believe they do have annual checks. Why not?

            As regards responsibility it should be an offence for the parent to have a child with FGM unless they have some good defence. There is no need for the child to give evidence agains the parent.

            It would stop overnight.

            • Eddie

              Yes, annual checks – why not?
              However, our teachers and schools are so in thrall to diversity-worship and misplaced multiculturalism, that they believe is being hyper-sensitive to all cultural and ethnic values and opinions and traditions.
              They have turned a blind eye to so much abuse in ethnic and religious communities, and many children have been abused and even killed because of it. But hey, they’ve ticked their diversity boxes and respected minority races and religions, so they’ve done their job perfectly (according to them).

      • Fergus Pickering

        Oh come Stephanie. The cases are not at all comparable.

        • StephanieJCW

          Yes they are, they really are. We are talking about the mutilation of children’s genitals for cultural/religious reasons. You think they’re “not the same” because one is more readily accepted in our culture. Of course the reasons for FGM are different and, at its most extreme it has far more negative outputs, hence why I am far more outraged by it.

          But I cannot pretend that MGM is objectively speaking, a ok. I just do because the culture I grew up in says it is.

          • Penny

            Male circumcision isn’t just a cultural practice, though, Stephanie. It can be a medical necessity. Its purpose does not have long-lasting effects in terms of physical and later, sexual, function.

            By contrast FGM is a cultural practice that has no parallel as regards medical necessity. It is considerably more invasive, dangerous and its effects are long lasting. As a cultural practice its purpose is to remove female desire.

            • Ridcully

              Precisely. Also, some parents have their sons circumcised because they believe it to be more hygienicand reduce the risk of infection. Granted, there is no medical evidence to support this, but at least there is a rational thought-process behind the decision, unlike FGM.

              • Daniel Maris

                There is medical evidence to back that up re MGM but it is not a good argument in my opinion. Mutilation is mutilation.

                • Penny

                  It depends on how far you want to take the “mutilation” argument, Daniel. In recent years I’ve noticed many baby girls – just months old – with pierced ears. I can only speak for myself but I had my ears pierced at age 21 – it hurt as the piercing was done and, because the sites became infected, it hurt even more afterwards! My at-the-tiime experience is probably unusual, but the soreness afterwards is perhaps more common.

                  There’s no good reason to pierce a baby’s ear – it may hurt at the time and for a while afterwards – but in the long term it has no ill effects. Only a circumcised man could say whether circumcision has long-term negative effects but the millions who have had it done seem not to be making any such claims. I really don’t think this is the case for girls who experience FGM. Their suffering seems to me to be not only during the procedure but in one way or another be that subsequent infections, intimate relationships, childbirth etc, long-term and damaging.

                • Eddie

                  But circumcised men cannot compare what they have to what they have lost! There is NO medical benefit or purpose to circumcision – the foreskin exists for a good reason, as do all the parts of female genitalia.
                  My opinion: all mutilation of children should be made illegal. Once children grow up and turn 18, they can chop or pierce anything they like, but the choice should be theirs, NOT mummy’s (and how the F do women know what is best anyway? Do they have penises under their arms to compare or something? And no, mummy does nOT know best.)

              • Eddie

                You are wrong there. FGM is also thought to be better and more hygienic in communities where it happens, and it protects a girl’s purity, which in those cultures is essential for marrying her off well – a whole family’s future can rest on it.
                No medical benefit to Male circumcision – or MGM as some call it. It’s a tradition, but then so was binding Chinese women’s feet, or leaving disabled babies on a hillside for the wolves.

            • Eddie

              Male circumcision is never a necessity, despite what you might think (why do ignorant women think they’re experts on owning a penis anyway?)
              Would you cut a child’s eyelids off because he got an eye infection? Chop the end of a finger off because it got a slight infection?
              Use anti-septic cream and remember hygiene – that is all you need.
              My advice would be never to listen to doctors who want to operate – they love slicing stuff off, and also most are circumcised so like others to be just like them. Ignore doctors; you’ll live a long unmutilated life…

          • Hexhamgeezer

            Comparing circumcision with FGM is like equating a haircut with beheading.


            • Eddie

              Oh no it isn’t.

              • Hexhamgeezer

                Oh Yes It Is

                (some panto this..:-))

                • Eddie

                  He’s behind you (with a little sharp willy knife)!

          • Penny

            Stephanie, to say that MGM and FGM are the same is to hugely trivialise the life-long suffering of the girls who have undergone this procedure.

            • Hexhamgeezer

              Which makes me suspect that ‘Stephanie’ is either male or the modern equivalent of the Aufseherinnen

            • Eddie

              She did not say they are the same; she said they are comparable and she is right.
              Why should a parent (usually a mother) have the right to decide to mutilate a perfect baby boy, to whom nature and evolution has gifted a very necessary foreskin?
              Might as well remove his eyelids in case they get infected; or chop his fingers off in case they get dirty.
              The puritan USA mutilates baby boys as a vestigial practice to prevent ‘self-abuse’. It is mutilation, nonetheless. And circumcised males with mutilated members simply don’t realise what they have lost.

          • Eddie

            I agree. There is absolute NO need whatsoever to mutilate ANY child, male or female. Circumcision has a long history, mainly in the hot sandy places of the world, to stop infections – these days, it is unnecessary. The USA routinely mutilates its baby boys of course – maybe why its men seem always to be so insecure and angry?

  • Chris

    I think a good tactic with regard to issues like FGM, grooming gangs and the whole issue of non white females being sh*t upon by the left is to set them into a civil war. Goad them, get them to prove their piousness to the marxist semi-religion.
    Ask them do they not believe in the equality of woman of colour to women of non colour? are they not sufficient believers of the god of equality? are they unbelievers of equality? are they therefore heretics? Stick to the subject of equality and force them into circles so they argue amongst themselves. Remember, treat them as religious unthinking zealots. Demand they prove their faith.
    Split them like Christianity, Islam and all other religions have split into sects.

  • atticus1900

    “If you create your ideas of right and wrong according to how you think your peers might judge you, or what company they might then accuse you of keeping, it is highly unlikely that you will often find yourself in the right.”

    An excellent sentence, and one which cuts to the root cause of why the Left fails so badly in positions of power: a lack of courage to say and act in the interests of what you really know to be true and right.

    Jung Chang called the (extreme) Left “the brain-death of a nation”. So true!

  • Chris

    Thats due to marxism being a vile genocidal creed. This goes back all the way to Engel’s call for all reactionary races to be murdered in the “the magyar struggle”.
    This pedigree was maintained by Hitler whose assault on Poles, Jews, Gypsys and and slavs is a clear continuation of this theme. This has also been continued to this day, as can be seen in the lefts hatred of Israel, the USA and England – all bastians of materialism and reactionary people (whom happen to be white).
    I personaly think that following the failure of a communist and socialist peoples to develop post industrialization, the left has decided that a return to pre-industrialization is the best bet for the creation of a socialist people, hence the support for Muslims (their pre industrial “red brigade”ish fighting force, hurling themselves at the capitalistic west), and non western cultures which could be regarded as pre-industrial. This can be seen in their lauding of multicultural enrichment from the third world, and never from other “developed” countries.
    These strains of thought (amongst others) have led the left to a racial Marxism in which whiteness is evil and capitalistic, and non whiteness is socialistic and pure.
    Basically they are racists.

  • The Red Bladder

    I think in this, as in so much else, Marx was right when he said “I wouldn’t want to belong to any club that would have me as a member”.

    • Fergus Pickering

      I wouldn’t want to belong to any club at all. Except maybe a music club for people who wanted to hear proper music. Or a cricket club when I culd play the bloody game.

      • The Red Bladder

        Played before have you? You should nip over to Australia, you’d probably get a knock or the chance to turn your arm over!

        • Fergus Pickering

          Don’t hit a man, or even eleven men, when they are down. However, I think they will win one of the last tests and Pietersen will score a double century. THAT is the triumph of hope over experience. I once took four wickets in one over.

          • The Red Bladder

            From now on you will be my yardstick for sheer optimism! Four in an over is impressive. Mind you I am still convinced I warrant an entry in Wisden, I once had five byes run off a ball, yes five, yes run! I might add that there was not a single overthrow involved!

            • Fergus Pickering

              The over went 4w6wwww. The last man charged down the wicket, missed it by a yard, turned round and fell flat on his face a foot short. as the fat wicket-keeper removed all three stumps. A triumph on tour in Dorset somewhere. 1967. England were crap in those days,

              • The Red Bladder

                Yes, we’ve got a few like that down here in Dorset!

    • anotherjoeblogs

      groucho and not karl !

      • The Red Bladder

        Yes but often is Karl quoted for his wisecracks?

  • Julieann Carter

    Aren’t Western values, bigoted…racist…homophobic….Islamaphobic….xenophobic?
    Aren’t we not allowed to hold to a singular value because everything is now relative?

    Common sense is a sin if that conflicts with fairness as defined by equality of outcome. So we fade away, or are shouted away, or we find comfort in the way of sanity on blogs such as this. As though it were Mary Hopkins Tavern!

    Oh my friend, we’re older but no wiser
    For in our hearts the dreams are still the same…

    Nothing much makes sense anymore. Where once we recognised a set of values as a majority – even if an often silent majority, a poison spread throughout the West that forced us into separate communities where quality of life depends upon where in the hierarchy of victim hood between these communities, one belongs.
    Divide and conquer!
    Calm, reasoned, intelligent, and evidence based counter argument to the consensus dogma is scorned as reactionary. Or/and, worse.
    If you dare to venture an intelligent and reasoned opinion to the contrary, then you will likely be subjected to a collective and vile hatefest, as Peter Hitchens was on Twitter last night.
    Surely pogrums next. Evidently many willing foot soldiers of the young Left, by their threats and abuse.

    One of their Messiahs, Owen Jones, trumped to his army of followers about the success of the stop-the-war-coalition. Eh?

    I agree with others that Assad is less of a threat. But…his military might could be a threat to the West, Israel in particular, in terms of on the path to Iran.
    We no longer have to worry about the military might of Iraq, Libya, Egypt, eg. (So called, Arab Spring).
    For that reason, I would be for the so called, ‘intervention’.
    But not if it were just an intervention, without that end game.

  • ohforheavensake

    Strange this- I’m a leftie, and I don’t recognise any of this. As far as I knew, us bunch over here have always been against gender segregation; and we lefties have been shouting about FGW for decades.

    Which leads me on to another, wider thought. Strikes me (and I’m trying to be as objective as I can here) that there’s a kind of blindness that afflicts the Right in the country. We know you: you bunch are pretty transparent- and if you read the Guardian/New Statesman etc, you’ll get a pretty nuanced image of the Right (which The Spectator, The Telegraph and The Mail in their various ways all confirm).

    But, when I read Right wing journalists discussing the left, what I tend to read bears no relation to current Left-wing thinking. What you’ve written here doesn’t reflect how we think. Why are you so far off the mark, d’you think?

    • ProperDave

      A nice loaded question, of the “have you stopped beating your wife?” variety!

      As a child of the welfare state I wouldn’t characterise myself as a ‘rightie’, as such. But as a secularist and someone who prizes free speech above all, I share the unease of people on here – and many of those I meet in everyday life – about (a) the growing influence of Islam on a traditionally agnostic culture and (b) the jumped-up politically correct twerps who run our lives these days from the comfort of their public sector offices.

      If lefties have been shouting about FGM for decades, why hasn’t there been a single prosecution in this country? Could ‘cultural sensitivity’ be getting in the way, do you think? The same cultural sensitivity that did nothing about Muslim rape gangs for years? (And I use that term deliberately, since part of their modus operandi was to target kuffar girls they regarded as worthless.)

      Listen, I was right behind Ben Elton in the 80s when he and his pals wanted to banish the likes of Bernard Manning from our airwaves. I was flabbergasted to think that my parents enjoyed Love Thy Neighbour in the early 70s. Now, though, I wonder if the ‘so right-on, it hurts’ mentality was the thin end the wedge that led to people being arrested and jailed for voicing their opinions on Twitter. I don’t care if their views are obnoxious. People should be free to air their opinions, and to have their views challenged, without the threat of a knock on the door from Plod.

      I haven’t moved in many right-wing circles socially, though I’ve encountered the occasional “Enoch was right” saloon-bar boor. I’ve more experience of left-wing groupthink, and of how, if you step out of line – by sympathising with Israel, say – they will turn on you viciously. They think they’re so open-minded when in reality, very often, they’re the biggest bigots of the lot. It’s the old “I hate Tories” cliche.

      I suspect you flatter yourself when you say you have a nuanced view of right-wingers. I’m interested, though, in the “current left-wing thinking” you allude to. Perhaps you’d like to expand on this?

      • Fergus Pickering

        But Enoch WAS right.

      • StephanieJCW

        If lefties have been shouting about FGM for decades, why hasn’t there been a single prosecution in this country?


        a) You need to know it has been performed on someone.
        b) You have to convince that person to testify.

        Good luck with that.

        • Daniel Maris

          Nonsense. You put in place a parental duty to protect the child and you have regular checks. The checks demonstrate (a) and failure in the duty is good enough to cover (b) without need for testimony. Only a nurse or doctor would have to testify.

    • Weaver

      Really? I thought us reactionary rightists we had a much balanced view of the left that the left had of us. After all, we only think you are misguided, rather than evil.

      I’ve seldom found a left-wing writer who actually understood my ethical reasoning or correctly modelled my behaviour. I’m not claiming my ethical reasoning is correct, merely that I’ve seldom found a left wing writer capable of comprehending it.

      I’d be interested if we could move this to experiement, if you can suggest a way.

      • Colonel Mustard

        It is because they exist only in propaganda as that comment reveals.

    • Rainsboro

      This is a joke? Nuance? In the Guardian? Reasoned analysis? In the New Statesman? Mehdi Hasan was their political editor.I would still place myself on the political left but the idea that the left, as a whole, has been shouting about FGM for years is bizarre. Shouting down anyone who mentioned it is nearer the truth. Exactly the same happened with the grooming gangs – I don’t remember the Labour establishment and commentariat rising up and backing Anne Cryer when she warned about Muslim grooming gangs? I remember the bien pensant left calling her and others like her racists and Islamophobes.

      There is still a worryingly large section of the left which is driven entirely by hatred and lust for power over others. They are the direct ideological descendants of the witchburners and freedom haters of previous centuries. No wonder they will excuse any Muslim oppression or atrocity, something deep down in them approves, they are soulmates
      Time for the left to split, those of us who genuinely believe in democracy need to recognise that those we once, stupidly, thought were allies are a far greater danger to our ideals than the Tories

      • Fergus Pickering

        The New Statesman is much better of late. The Guardian is still crap from cover to cover, but it won’t last much longer as a newspapr because nobody buys it.

    • Alexandrovich

      “… and we lefties have been shouting about FGW (sic) for decades.”

      I must be deaf as a post. Unless what you meant to say was ‘ a few of us raised our voices once, at a post-Donmar Warehouse party.’

    • edlancey

      “current Left-wing thinking”

      as if you clowns have any opinions of your own…

  • Bonkim

    It is difficult to alter social mindsets and issues such as FGM, arranged/forced marriages etc, can only be tackled with the active involvements of the communities that such criminality takes place. Most people in Britain have only a vague notion of minority cultural practices and know even less what they can do. There are more pressing issues affecting Britain than FGM or forced marriages amongst Muslims. Politicians only act when the issus impact on their next election.

    • atticus1900

      Cutting off clitorises is extreme child abuse. It is a very pressing problem that has recently come to this country, and I want it eradicated as a matter of priority.
      I would also support the outlawing of marrying first cousins. A huge amount of Pakistani couples (I forget the percentage, but it was around 70%) in Bradford are married to a first cousin, often forcibly. The effect on the children who have to live with terrible genetic diseases goes against the laws of nature.

      And finally, you don’t have to involve communities, you just have to enforce the law on all people equally with the powers that already exist. This is not being done, as there has yet to be a conviction in the UK for FGM.

      • Bonkim

        agree with that – the point was unless there is a formal complaint or a doctor caught red-handed committing FGM the law is helpless.

        Regards close/forced marriages – once again formal complaints and evidence essential for conviction. Hope the UK law enforcement take this seriously – at the same time encourage people from within the affected groups to come forward. Social pressures can be very powerful – the same in many expatriate communities overseas where much is hidden from the local law enforcement.

        • StephanieJCW

          “agree with that – the point was unless there is a formal complaint or a doctor caught red-handed committing FGM the law is helpless.”

          That’s what a lot of people don’t get. Unless they advocate forcibly subjecting all and every muslim female minor to periodic examination of her genitalia.

          • Bonkim

            FGM is barbaric yes – but what about people voluntarily subjecting themselves to tattoos, parents carrying out circumcision of their young, etc.

            FGM has been raised by Muslims from some of the affected countries – the best the public can do is to encourage these people to change their mindsets – the question is how?

            • Hexhamgeezer

              Tattoos = FGM?

              You m0ron

              • Bonkim

                won’t press it but all mutilation of body. The degree of injury is relative. Local culture dictates what is acceptable and what is not – but as said – how do you enforce contravention given that some societies clam up when attacked and difficult to get evidence or formal complaint from those affected.

                • JackyTreehorn

                  Not difficult, as soon as someone who has been affected by this barbaric practise comes to the attention of medical staff for whatever reason, the parents should be prosecuted at least then anybody else evidence permitting. At least it would be a start. It would matter little if the ‘societies’ clamed up if it could be seen that the clitoris was missing.

                • Bonkim

                  You have no idea of how the justice system operates in Britain.

                • JackyTreehorn

                  So you think that if a five year old child was to be seen by a doctor for whatever reason and for the sake of argument he notices that an ‘unnatural’ disfigurement has occurred such as the absence of a clitoris and labia or perhaps something as ‘innocent’ as a tattoo, he would not inform the social services and or the police? You do not need the child to disclose such information, the abuse is evident.

                • Bonkim

                  Not what I think – if any health/social worker notices something suspicious – need to report to the Police.

          • Penny

            Stephanie, do you not see this as being exactly the same as any other child who may be on the *at risk* register? Why should suspected and/or potential victims of FGM be ignored? In what way is FGM different from a child living in conditions of neglect and/or being physically, mentally or sexually abused?

          • JackyTreehorn

            If you were a Muslim girl about to have your clitoris cut off with a broken piece of glass or a razor blade, don’t you think you would ‘advocate’ compulsory examinations by trained medical staff?
            You really are a disgusting cowardly individual

  • mrsjosephinehydehartley

    But this article too shows a very narrow and dualistic mindset, to me. This is because the gender segregation thing is not an “issue” even though everyone is quite rightly concerned about how unconventional it seems to our normal way of life. To me it’s about public convenience and public space, public interests and the interests of members of the general public.

    Ladies use toilets marked “ladies” normally .. but nothing is stopping us using the mens ( especially if there’s a big queue). And let’s face it .. if there’s a big queue or a big cost attached to the mens loos, men are wont to go behind a bush, up a corner or even at the side of the main road. The whole of the public space is treated as a convenience for some men who otherwise don’t give a toss, it seems.

    It’s an economic fact that people can do whatever they want to do voluntarily and if we don’t want to attend segregated set ups we don’t have to. We can attend lectures or universities that don’t do segregation. So I wonder if it’s a free market thing that’s turning our institutions into over-blown, over-paid and over here type corporate jobbies.

    But it would be better if these big organisations clearly informed the public that they practice gender segregation before we spend any money on them.

    • Weaver

      Maybe its something we shouldn’t spend public money on…let the Muslims segregate on their own initiative and dollar.

    • StephanieJCW

      “even though everyone is quite rightly concerned about how unconventional it seems to our normal way of life”

      Not even – I went to a girls school and I think they are fairly normal!

    • Penny

      Rather too much is being woven into the fact that there are separate facilities (e.g. toilets, changing rooms, schools etc) for males and females.

      Taking the case of the lecture at Queen Mary university (London). Men were directed to the front of the room, women had to sit at the back. During the Q & A session, men could ask a question by raising their hand, while women had to write their questions down and pass them to the front. To argue the case that all segregation is equal, you would have to say why the underlying reason for segregation at the QM university was no different from the same women going into a changing room.

  • ProperDave

    Imagine some maniac kidnapping girls off the street, cutting off their clitorises and sewing up their vaginas. Say this had happened to three or four girls. It would be on every front page and at the top of every news bulletin, day in and day out until he was caught.

    Now change the circumstances a little, so that the child is likely non-white and her parents are in on the torture. As far as we can tell, this happens thousands of times a year in the UK. Yet we barely hear a peep about it. It’s one of the horrors of our age, and something future generations will damn us for. Savile x 1,000.

    • StephanieJCW

      What do you want done about it? Serious question – but you will need to identify those who have been mutilated (how?) and then get them to testify against their parents.

      Don’t you think both of those will be slightly more difficult than you believe them to be?

      • Pootles

        You might as well say the same thing about other abuse crimes. The fact is many of the girls mutliated in this way end up in hospital suffering from appalling complications – the medical staff have the evidence of the crimes, and it would take the police very little effort to identify the doctors (and others) who carried them out. Yet this does not happen – still not a single person has been convicted in the UK of this disgusting practice

        • StephanieJCW

          Ok so you find those who end up in hospital (and a large number won’t if done by an unethical professional.)

          So yes you have a victim. You then say with little effort those who carried out the crime can be identified. What do you mean by that? Seriously what ‘little effort’ would it take to identify perpetrators and gather evidence?

          I do say the same about other abuse crimes incidentally. Domestic abuse is far more prevalent than prosecutions would suggest because it’s not as easy as you make out.

          Do you have any evidence at all, of police choosing not to charge when they had adequate evidence and willing witnesses to an act of FGM?

          • Pootles

            Just because one would not identify all victims (e.g., the girls mutliated by family members, or ‘unethical’ professionals) does not mean to say that the other victims shouldn’t be given justive. What sort of argument is that ? There isn’t a single crime in which all perpetrators are brought to trial.
            Imagine a victim in hospital, mutilated and sewn. There is the evience of a crime. The next step is to identify the person who did it – which is often, in the UK, a doctor. The victim will, in al likelihood be from the age of 8-12. The police are practiced in acquiring evidence from young victims as much as anyone else. What appears to be needed is the political will to carry out prosecutions.
            The evidence for failue in this respect? Not a single person has been brought to trial for this crime. Not one.
            You need to think a little about the horror of this crime. Your moniker suggests that you are a woman. I knew a woman who had been mutilated, at the age of 12, in North Africa, by other women, with a knife. What do you think that did to her mentally, as well as physically.

            • StephanieJCW

              “Just because one would not identify all victims (e.g., the girls mutliated by family members, or ‘unethical’ professionals) does not mean to say that the other victims shouldn’t be given justive. What sort of argument is that ?”

              Not one I have made – so either learn to read or, pour petrol on your strawman and set it alight.

              I am just defending authorities from those who seem to think prosecuting FGM would be easy as pie, and lack of prosecutions necessarily points to an unwillingness to do something.

              France used as the great example has managed to prosecute 29 in as many years.

              And spare me the heartstrings, I have a friend who has undergone FGM. I know the impacts it has.

              You would also have greater joy getting blood from a stone than in getting her to testify against her parents (although she doesn’t live here and it wasn’t done in the UK so besides the point.)

              • crosscop

                In my opinion, it would be far more effective (and better for Britain) to deport the whole family immediately that this barbaric crime came to light. All it should need is for a doctor to say that the deed had been done to the child. That is all the evidence we should need. And if the individual who did the cutting could be identified, then obviously, the order of the boot would apply for them too.
                FGM should not exist in Britain. It should not be our problem and those who practice it do not belong here and should leave.

                • James Lovelace

                  There are thought to be 100,000 girls/women in Britain who have had this done to them.

                  That means 200,000 parents (plus cutters & other family members) who have been party to this crime. Deport them all.

              • Pootles

                ‘Defending the authorities’ ? Because they pass laws about filthy crimes then do damn all to prosecute them? Because there is more than a suspicion that this crime has been treated with kid gloves because nobody wants to be ‘racist’, ‘institutionally racist’ etc ? Because if this was a crime that a white ‘community’ was carrying out something would be done to stop it.
                The tone of your posts is unpleasant, unnecessarily so. It is possible to debate without that. In fact, unpleasantness is corrosive of democratic discourse, and is, often, the mark of the Left – one of their nasty habits.

                • Moa

                  Isn’t it clear that StephanieJCW is a Leftist?

                  A closest-totalitarian who opposes people from criticizing ‘the authorities’?

                  Someone who puts the reputation of The State ahead of the wellbeing of vulnerable young women?

                  Someone who argues by attacking “The Right” (as all Cultural Marxists do, reflexively) rather than proposing *viable solutions*?

                  StephanieJCW is entitled to her opinion, but understand she is part of the *problem* afflicting modern Britain.

              • Moa

                So what, because it is difficult to prosecute then nothing should be done? with this argument *you* are providing cover to the practitioners of this barbarity.

                The moral thing to do is to argue that prosecutions are automatically started by the State against any doctor that performs this and any family that has it performed on one of their family members. Automatic. The child does not need to testify in this case. Automatic. No “ifs” “buts” or “maybes”. And no wimping out by the State.

                Yes, one can argue that families will do this in secret and not bring girls to hospital. Well guess what, genius, that already happens. But without automatic and inexorable action in *every* case this will not be stopped nor even reduced.

                ps. don’t provide cover for such evil barbarity through your arguments (which is clear that you are doing through your posts in this thread). By deflecting from evil it makes *you* evil. Stop it right now!

              • JackyTreehorn

                Surely the parents should be prosecuted? How hard would that be? I mean, if the daughter of a Christian was found at any age of development with her clitoris torn off the authorities would go ballistic, they may not be able to prosecute some tribal grand mother back in Africa but they could charge the parents for allowing it. We all know why there have been few prosecutions and that is because of cultural cringe and not wanting to offend or in the case of Labour politicians losing potential votes.

      • ProperDave

        Good question, defeatist answer.

        In France, there have been 29 trials and 100 convictions in the past three decades.

        The following article from CBC has some interesting suggestions, however:

        • StephanieJCW

          I actually just made a simple statement of fact.

          Your link to is all known. And yes a start would be training professionals to recognise FGM and then report this to the authorities. I don’t disagree. However how often will the situation arise when a young girl has to have her genitals examined by a medical practitioner? And even once that is done – how do you go about identifying culprits and persuading children to give evidence against their family members (far and away the hardest part.) Going back to the French conviction rate, what is 100 is as a total of the whole?

          50%? 5%? 0.05%?

          I mean France, like much of Europe tolerates a far greater state intrusion into the lives of citizens than would Britons.

          How likely do you think something such as this:

          ” Its systematic examination of young girls has led to some hundred prosecutions?” Would be to happen? Seriously? Maybe on babies during health checks – but as they get older. And also recall the French convictions took place over almost 30 years. It really isn’t as easy as you seem to think it is.

          • crosscop

            Regular examinations of “at risk” groups could be done at school – much as those once carried out by the Nit Nurse. It would of course, cause uproar in the Muslim community – but then almost anything does.

          • Penny

            It isn’t easy – but we have to start somewhere.

            I would imagine the authorities have some idea about which girls are at risk. It isn’t all “brown skinned girls” by any means, but mostly those from some parts of Africa and the ME.

            Perhaps a start could be made by ante-natal and maternity wards who can quite easily identify women who have already suffered FGM – as they do those who are drug and alcohol abusers and/or in other ways putting their infants at risk. It’s not at all unusual for social services to leap into potential abuse cases at this stage and they tend not to need a heap of outside witnesses before putting a child on an *at risk* register. They very often rely on medical, social or other local authority evidence. There are quite obviously experts who help a child or young person discuss their experiences while minimising distress: this is very often how sexual abuse is discovered and prosecuted.

            I’ve no idea how experts go about deciding how at risk a child is, but chatting to the parents and getting a feel for their cultural beliefs, while making it abundantly clear that FGM is against the law of this country might give them some idea as to whether the infant girl is at risk.

    • James Lovelace

      “Say this had happened to three or four girls. It would be on every front page and at the top of every news bulletin, day in and day out until he was brought to justice.”

      No, it wouldn’t. Not if he was a muslim.

      CROP estimated that 10,000 British schoolgirls were lured into a life of rape and prostitution by muslims. Muslims were doing this from 1988 (at the latest). One branch of SOCA even produced a documentary in 2008 to be shown to schoolgirls to warn them. The documentary has never been shown (thanks to the Left).

  • Two Bob

    The BNP are left, just look at their economic policies.

    • Chris

      Yes. This highlights probably the greatest lie of our civilization. The premise that the presence of racism therefore means you belong on the right of the political spectrum, on the basis that it is a manifestation of inequality. This is at best a gross misuse of a technicality, at worst a designed ploy by left wing academics.
      Race should not be on the political spectrum, and inequality does not mean right wing in this instance. For example, Communist have inequality and hierachy – communists are superior to non communist, whom must be turned to communists or removed. Is this not a hierarchy? an inequality? and as such does not communism belong on the right wing?
      Statism and individualism should be the defining factors, but then Hitler (a socialist) would be on the left, and that would mean there are no “right wing” dictators with which to smear libertarians.

      • Knives_and_Faux

        Racism is a natural thought process, to look after ones own tribe.
        Making this illegal is as ridiculous as allowing homosexuals to play at being ‘married’.

        • James Lovelace

          “to look after ones own tribe.”

          If you can trace 20 generations of your family tree back to the same 30 square miles were you now live, maybe you are right. If not, you are just a hypocrite who revels in hating people.

          • Knives_and_Faux

            You’re a simple fool who equates loving ones own and putting them first before outsiders as a hateful act.

  • MikeF

    “And perhaps as they contort themselves over gender segregation that same left could cast their mind back over that debate and ask themselves a question. How many young girls’ clitorises had to be mutilated while they busily curated their left-wing credentials?”
    Not a question the left would bother with any more than they would care about the number of vulnerable young women raped by organised gangs of Pakistani Muslims in Northern England because it might have been deemed ‘racist’ to intervene. ‘Curating’ their credentials is what being on the left is all about. It is a comprehensive but also closed (self-)belief system the sole purpose of which is the continuous vindication of and reinforcement of its adherents estimation of themselves. Everything else is conditional, transient and disposable.

  • Julieann Carter

    I think there are so many on the Left who are very, very frightening. A solitary rude and abusive Lefty launching a sneering personal attack on an online forum such as Twitter, will generally eventually disappear rather than respond in turn, to a reasoned counter-question. Or, will disappear in the face of concrete counter fact, rather than acknowledge ‘that they were wrong’.
    Only to then tweet their followers, distorting the thrust of the argument, while at the same time adding abusives slurs. And God help you when the collective start! It can go on for days, with each of them in turn retweeting to their own followers, while adding their bit of vitriol too.

    Why so angry? I really do not understand? It’s eye popping!
    From making an initial comment on child benefit – to being ultimately accused of (in partnership with IDS) of plotting, ‘The Final Solution’!!
    IDS’s wife is referred to as ‘bitchwife’.

    A young female was about the first to verbally abusive Peter Hitchens after his Newsnight debate, including making a threat of violence. The gutter language, the hatefest hysteria, are these people parents of children?! I fear for the children!

    Very often they will begin exploding on cue, detonated by the likes of Polly Toynbee/Owen Jones.
    They must enjoy the power it affords them?
    Owen Jones tweeted he could ‘go for’ supporting the campaign against gender segregation, but we must at the same time campaign against single-sex schools.
    That old ‘moral equivalence’.
    It is plain, even he cannot think for himself. He’s been weaned and indoctrinated on this stuff. Pre-programmed too I think, to believe in his own Messiah-like greatness.
    He is poison for young and uneducated/academically challenged minds.

    Unfortunately, until Left Wing/Communist agitators are excavated from the foundations of our state broadcaster and educational establishments, then truth and integrity cannot withstand and this country will implode, I fear.

    • atticus1900

      I agree. I never understood why it was acceptable to call people ‘Tory Scum’ – a truly hateful and dehumanising term. The Left constantly try to dehumanise their political opponents, and we know where that led in the past… Rwanda… gas chambers etc…

    • Chris

      It’s religious like mania. Like a flock whipped up by a particular sermon from their favorite priest.
      Don’t view them though the prism of politics, view them through the prism of religious power structures. Their obsession with morals and their zealot like certainty is evidence of this. Gramsci always said that Marxism needed to occupy the spiritual needs that the church occupied, and that’s what they are doing.

  • Austin Barry

    The left, fearful of tacit alignment with sensible people, will do anything to accommodate Islam, which is all about separation: men from women, Christians from Muslims, clitoreses from genitals and, ultimately, infidel heads from infidel bodies.

    Cohesion and Islam seem incompatible.

    • Chris

      They do not fear Islam. They believe it is a “useful” idiot with which to attack the west.

      • Alexandrovich

        Funny that, because that’s just what Islam believes about the left.

      • James Lovelace

        The jewish communist who went on to form the SWP said that if the Nazis attacked (pre-Israel) Palestine, he’d help the Nazis.

    • James Lovelace

      Socialism, communism, national socialism, fascism are all compatible with islam. They are all forms of collectivism.

      The founder of the jihadist Muslim Brotherhood modelled it on the communist and national socialist parties. Mawdudi, the most influential muslim of the 20th century, said the islamic state was a fascist state.

      • alex_charnley

        I love it when I hear this messianic denial of collectivism. Capitalism is ofcourse collective, but collectively divided. This is its foundational contradiction. In the hope I will preempt accusations of being a marxist zealot, I will at least attempt to illustrate this point.

        What if we understand the production of the internet as a tool developed through the interactions of the collective: people use the internet and then others produce developments based on these interactions. In this sense, we all co author the development of the internet. Or put another way, if people stop using the internet then their is no longer any need for its development – and vica versa. Moreover, what is particularly unique to digital technology is the ability for anybody to hack code. This means that anybody has the means of production, if they commit to learning this language – and there is plenty of tutorials online in order to do so. This is your collective – you live and breath it. The contradiction ofcourse is that it is in the interest of a minority to pretend that it is the captains of industry who make the things we use. The expert or wealth creator gifts us the society we create. Well, not so. Pre digital and indeed today, it was the publicly funded university that provided the innovative space for the collective to develop the technologies capital needed to reproduce itself. But, now the means of production have been democratised through the internet, the lie of “the expert” becomes even harder to sustain.

        The greater point I suppose is that the right wing cannot do very much about this, because people (whether you call them left or not) rationally move to claim more equal grounding in any social setting. We can surely agree on the history of this claim. So all those self assured rightists, like the author of this article, have little more than fear as their only material. Oh lonesome them.

  • ProperDave

    I was once a fairly right-on leftie myself, and I cringe when I think of the self-righteous cant I used to come out with. With hindsight, it was mostly about patting myself on the back about what a good person I thought I was.

    One thing that set me on the slow road rightwards around the turn of the millennium – apart from the ageing process and general life experience – was reading PJ O’Rourke’s brilliant comedic prose. “But he’s so right wing!” said a friend of mine at the time (a genuine Hampstead socialist, living in Islington). Which got me thinking: isn’t that inverted McCarthysism?

    On the issue of Islam and Islamism, I’m with that other disillusioned leftie, Christopher Hitchens. Think back to 11 September 2001, and one of the principal challenges of our century. Faced with choosing between free, liberal, Western, pluralistic democracies and an oppressive death cult, an alarming number on the left asked: “Well, what about East Timor?” Since then, their contortions have only become more strained. Which, to cut a long story short, is why I’d rather read Douglas Murray in The Spectator than the bizarre moral contortions and left-wing orthodoxies of, say, Comment is Free.

    • Julieann Carter

      So many current right of centre thinkers were Lefty when young. Douglas Murray is one of them, if I recall correctly. Melanie Phillips, Toby Young are two more who come to mind.

      • Fergus Pickering

        Well of course they were.

      • James Lovelace

        Friedrich Hayek was a socialist in his youth. As was Thomas Sowell. James Burnham was a Trotskyist. That is why such people see so clearly what is going on with the Leftists.

    • Weaver

      Yeah, that fits. I suspect a lot of Left-wing belief is just social-signalling and naricissism. It explains the greater tribalism and self-regard they seem to have.

      • James Lovelace

        Absolutely. Go to any leftwing event and socialise. You will find yourself being constantly judged and denigrated. It is all about them saying the right thing, whilst doing something completely different. Like my friend in the SWP who doesn’t work but has a domestic cleaner, or the other friend in the SWP who drives a £60,000 sports car. Or the Lord who runs the SWP.

    • Chris

      “With hindsight, it was mostly about patting myself on the back about what a good person I thought I was.”
      There it is. Left wing politics is religious like. I hate to term it as religion, as I’m not sure it qualifies. I think like Confucianism (sorry to any confucists, not saying you are on a par with left wingers) it hovers on the edge.
      Left wing politics uses the same structures as religion, and apes the manner in which religion exerts a control on people who seek received wisdom. These people are not stupid, or bad, they are merely trusting in a way, and look for guidance on how to be a good person as they may lack confidence in making a strong moral decision. That is a good trait, as it shows a level of restraint, and an understanding that they are not all knowing and wise, but it is easily corrupted by socialism and marxism.
      That’s why left wingers spend their time defining themselves against conservatives, they have been told they are evil, and as such they seek to not ally themselves with evil. They must also stay with the group, and within orthodoxy, or become heretics and outcasts. It takes strong minds, and decency to break out of this orthodoxy, and luckily people do do it, as you have evidenced.

      • ProperDave

        I take your point, but I can’t entirely get behind this.

        My late father was pretty much an old-school communist. Even as a child, I used to roll my eyes at his rose-coloured view of the USSR. But this stemmed from his own experience of poverty. When my dad was a toddler in the early 1930s, his own father died in an industrial accident, leaving his Catholic mother (then pregnant with her 10th child) to bring up a family in the Great Depression. There was no health and safety, no compensation culture and no welfare state. I don’t blame him for idolising Nye Bevan and getting all misty-eyed about the Russian workers’ paradise.

        Though I’ll never vote Labour again, and am much more sceptical of its economic record than I used to be in my youth, I’d be lying if I said the Labour movement’s achievements hadn’t made a difference to my life.

        Perhaps we should differentiate between yesterday’s left-wing idealism and the metropolitan obsessions – chiefly, the identity politics – of today. My dad, for one, would have been appalled to see Labour taken over by – to use a great phrase of Julie Burchill’s – so many “middle-class know-alls”.

        • Daniel Maris

          Very good post. You can look at these tectonic plate movements in history in a kind of Hegelian way. The industrial revolution – with its barbaric exploitation of working people – provoked the reaction of socialism (co-ops, trade unions, political parties and so on). Communism in due course produced the reaction of Fascism. The post war synthesis that emerged from all this upheaval was the mixed economy/welfare state/liberal democracy model – probably the most successful societal form in all history.

          But that model is under extreme pressure from globalised free trade, mass immigration, mass casualty terrorism and rising health and social care costs.

          That’s where we are now. I don’t think the model is sustainable.

  • James Strong

    Many on the ‘left’ are racists and fascists.
    We see the Unite Against Fascism crowd disrupting peaceful demonstrations.
    We see the ‘left’ failing to condemn the barbarities and oppression that are so much a part of mohammedan theory and practice when, if those barbarities and oppression were advocated by white men they would be denounced. The ‘left’ treat brown people differently from the way they treat white people;they are racists.

    • James Lovelace

      The Left have no principles. Every cause they take up (e.g. the enslavement of black Africans), is only a means to bash the establishment.

      Other parties in the west have totally failed to point out that Mussolini, Mosley, Hitler were all socialists. Instead, nazism/fascism has been described as “right wing”. Is anyone surprised if every generation since WW2 hasn’t thought socialism was somehow less evil than being “right wing”?

      • Daniel Maris

        Mussolini was a socialist. Hitler was never a socialist in any meaningful sense. He loathed social democrats.

        • Moa

          What part of “National Socialism” do you not get Daniel?

          Socialism is collectivism is statism and all are anti-personal liberty.

          Hitler was a socialist, as are all the great mass-murdurers of the 20th Century.

          Fascism is a socialist economic system where the “means of production” remain in private hands but the “fruits of production” are controlled by the State and/or political elite.

          It was one of the greatest pieces of disinformation of the Cultural Marxists (infesting universities for a century now) that rebranded the Fascist (Leftist collectivist) Hitler as “Right Wing”.

          The true right wing is not collectivist as fascists are. The Right goes from the center-right to conservatives, then libertarians, the anarchists (who are the “Far Right”). Fascists are “Far Left”/ Don’t let the disinformation fool you!

      • Moa

        Fascism is a socialist economic system where the “means of production” remain in private hands but the “fruits of production” are controlled by the State and/or political elite. This means that Fascism is a “Left Wing” ideology.

        As I point out to Daniel below, it was one of the greatest pieces of disinformation of the Cultural Marxists (infesting universities for a century now) that rebranded the Fascist (Leftist collectivist) Hitler as “Right Wing”.

        Hitler was head of the *National Socialist German Worker’s Party*. See the magic word “socialist”. That means he was anti-personal liberty and all for the Big State. That means he was politically *Left*. When Hitler and fascists get called “Right Wing” the caller is either ignorant or deliberately misleading. Please don’t propagate that particular lie!

    • Hexhamgeezer

      And don’t forget CMD is an enthusiastic supporter of the UAF as are many ‘Tory’ MPs including my local one Guy Opperman.

  • Ian Rydier

    These two underneath comments are, as they say, bang on

  • Noa

    That Douglas Murray even uses the language of the left, in referring to ‘gender segregation’, to refer to this issue demonstrates that ‘the Left’ does matter, very much.
    The left has been so successful in transforming the British political landscape from a clear adversarial dichotomy between Conservatism and socialism to a consensua model where the parties principles-where they have any-and policies are now indistinguishable.
    Nowhere is this seen more obviously that in the way in which the Left has usurped our very language to control the public debate on crucial issues of liberty and personal freedom. Reference to discrimination between men and women because it is muslim practice, would focus debate on the real issues, not sideline the debate as a ‘feminist’, or ‘equality’ issue, themselves part of the langue and agenda of the Left.
    The Left has not gone or been defeated. Quite the opposite, as long we continue to use its thoughts and language, it has won.

    • Mike Barnes

      If the left doesn’t matter, they’ve certainly done a good job of hijacking the Conservatives into doing everything the left wants anyway.

      Gay marriage, green crap, EU, income inequality, crime and the courts, education, social work, drugs, feminism…

      The left orthodoxy dominates every area, and if you disagree you a branded a racist and or loony by a Conservative Prime Minister.

      • Chris

        you are branded a heretic, a heretic against left wing dogma; not a racist.
        Begin the language war now. call it for what it is.

      • StephanieJCW

        The Left wants income inequality and crime???

        What have the Conservatives done on drugs that the Left wanted?

        • Moa

          > “The Left wants income inequality and crime???”
          Yes! Oh, for sure they talk about reducing income inequality but every policy they have eventually increases dependence on the State. The only policy known to work is to grow the overall economy yet the Left are all for redistributive policies that shrink growth and hurt the poor the most.

          Why is this? because talk about inequality is simply talk for Leftists. They will say anything they need to because what they are really after is power and control. They will do anything they can to grow that power.

          With regard to crime the Left definitely has policies that increase it. For the Left who is the victim and who is the perpetrator is largely determined by skin color; an African mugger is the victim of white oppression, and a white muggee is a co-conspirator in colonial oppression and “shouldn’t have been walking in that area anyway”.

          The Left also claim to be non-rascist but they are the ones who treat people as stereotypical ‘identity groups’ and not as individuals. The Left are comepletely *obsessed* with race and minorities – provided the minority is not some christian outfit getting exterminated in Syria or Egypt or Indonesia or Malaysia. You see, Muslims are the ‘minority du jour’ (despite they having 56 countries + the Palestine jihadi disputed territories, and 1.6 BILLION Muslims) so they are always the ‘victims’ even if they are hacking heads off in Aleppo or Cairo or London etc.

          The fact people even support the political Left given their massive number of killings in the 20th Century (Hilter with his National *Socialism*; Stalin and Lenin with their Societ *Socialism*; Mao with his Chinese *Socialism*; Islam with their religious socialism; get the picture?) shows the triumph of “Cultural Marxist” propaganda in warping the minds of the “Free World”. You’re in “The Matrix” constructed by the Cultural Marxists but are completely oblivious to the bars. Britain is particularly biased in its reporting (eg. BBC lies by omission *all the time*).

          Sorry to hit you so hard with the ClueBat(tm) Steph, but really you have no idea about the World of deliberate disinformation you are living in.

    • Rocksy

      The Left matters only to the chatteristas.. The rest of the country are actually right wing and when you ask them the ‘right’ questions, they find to their surprise, that they are all Thatcherites.

    • James Lovelace

      “The left has been so successful in transforming the British political landscape from a clear adversarial dichotomy between Conservatism and socialism to a consensual model where the parties principles-where they still have any-and policies, are now indistinguishable.”

      Nothing’s changed in 50 years. Back in 1960, Hayek, von Mises, James Burnham all wrote articles/books where they said “the British Conservative Party is a socialist party”. The only reason you think this was not the case comes down to one individual: Margaret Thatcher. Her reign was geared around the policies of Hayek, she was self-consciously at war with those Tories who had become socialists. The Tories stabbed her in the back, and returned to being socialists.

      It is amazing how ignorant supposedly “right wing” people are. I suggest they read Hayek’s “Why I Am Not A Conservative”.

      • Noa

        I distinguished between Conservatism and socialism. I do not claim that the Conservative party, then or now, actually holds conservative principles or values.
        In fact, quite the opposite, its leadership is clearly much more comfprtable in bed with the socialists of the Lliberal Democrat and even the Labour party, than it is with its withering grass roots support.
        Otherwise, I accept your analysis of an all too brief, conservative flirtation with if not a renaissance with Conservatism under Mrs Thatcher.

    • Tom

      Personally I don’t find ‘cliterodectimy’ to be an apt word to describe the viciousness and savagery of that procedure as performed in certain traditional communities. It makes it seem too clinical, too medical, too humane. I think Female Genital Mutilation is a far better description of that butchery.

      • Noa

        I suggest that the word we should both be using, in the interest of gender equality, is castration.

        • Tom

          I don’t think that is accurate either, as castration renders a male infertile, but FGM doesn’t make women infertile. For gender equality I would suggest Genital Mutilation.

          • Noa

            Both male and female victims may castrated for direct or indirect sexual purposes, which may orginate from religious or cultural beliefs, or both.

            And being castrated will not necessariy render a man infertile.

    • Moa

      Even you use the words the Left choose. Why not call them for what they really are “Cultural Marxists” ?

    • James Allen

      They matter only insofar as the modern consensual right-wing politician seeks to appeal to the “middle ground” by speaking the language of the left (and in many cases appeasing them with soft-left policies). That this is an ultimately self-defeating strategy is of no consequence to them; it helps create a dividing-line between the party’s ruling elite and their ‘neanderthal’ backbenchers, thus creating an ‘us and them’ narrative that enforces party discipline.

  • First L

    Being on the left requires such a twisted contortion of logic that it’s a wonder that Socialists can even tie their own shoelaces. To them a knot is equal to a straight line.

    • Weaver

      You’re saying that shoelaces can’t be bent? That’s homophobic hate speech. 😉