“There is nothing like a dame!” :>)))
* WWI icon Field Marshall Horatio Herbert Kitchener died on June 5 1916
* On mission to Russia his ship the HMS Hampshire exploded off Scotland
* HMS Hampshire sunk in Scapa Flow, the scene of recent Battle of Jutland
* Lord Kitchener widely known for being face of WWI recruitment posters
Emphasis mine. From here.
I dispare. That is like saying the Somme occurred in the Yorkshire Dales.
I can take any quantity of editorial bias but when it comes to simple, checkable facts about a battle that has been heavily in the news recently due to the centenary.
But wait there is more! The farticle also gives the oxygen of publicity to the idea that Kitchener made it to Russia and… became… Joseph Stalin.
Regular readers will know I have little or no time for the only country on the planet that forbids women from driving. They also stone homosexuals. I on the other hand have got stoned with homosexuals. I have also been in cars driven by women. The times we live in eh?
It’s coming out. I knew. I just knew the camel-fucking bastards were up to their fucking necks in 9/11 (and the rest).
I don’t care for their depravity but depravity is just that. Being implicit in the murder of nigh on 3000 people is another matter entirely. I don’t care if they want to make my ancestors who embuggered monks on Lindisfarne and stole their plate look civilized. But that was over a thousand years ago. Things move on. The last gift my country got from Norway was a Christmas Tree. What have we ever got from Saudi Arabia? Hatred, evil and 15/19 on 9/11.
The time has come…
We build nuclear because Saudi you have nothing but oil. Nothing. I mean nothing. Let’s put this bluntly. This is not Islamophobia – oh, no! This is straight horror at our bending-over for a vile regime. I have visited some of the great Mosques of the World. I was treated with respect and I showed them respect.
I have dirty little secret. I do. I like photographing religious buildings and Islam does seem much more amenable than Catholics for example.
This is not Islam. This is an unspeakably corrupt regime we have enabled.
This has to end. Now.
Herewith economist Dr. Ronald Coase, interviewed in 2002 by Richard Epstein for the Liberty Fund’s “Intellectual Portrait” series. Dr. Coase sketches his background, and then discusses such topics as public utilities, in particular the water supply and the Post Office, how these came to be state-owned in Britain, and the reasoning that led to the state-owned BBC. Notes that the Educated Classes approved: for it was necessary to raise the tone of the culture of the lower classes. He explains that having started as a socialist, sheer observation persuaded him that free enterprise works better. He discusses the famous Lighthouse Example, and states that in the end, governments are necessary to determine (i.e. define) what will be the property rights, and to enforce them.
About an hour.
Antony Flew cites an observation by Bertrand Russell, and an Islamic manifesto from the Islamic Council of Europe:
When in 1920 Bertrand Russell visited the
USSR — decades before the Politburo found it convenient
to present itself as the Protector of the Arabs — he discerned
similarities between Bolshevism and Islam: “Bolshevism
combines the characteristics of the French Revolution with
those of the rise of Islam”; and “Marx has taught that Com-
munism is fatally predestined to come about; this produces a
state of mind not unlike that of the early successors of Ma-
hommet.” So Russell himself concluded:
Mahommedanism and Bolshevism are practical, social,
unspiritual, concerned to win the empire of this world
… What Mahommedanism did for the Arabs, Bolshev-
ism may do for the Russians.
As a clear, commendably honest and altogether authoritative
epitome of the totalitarian character of Islam consider this
manifesto issued in Leicester, England, on behalf of the Is-
lamic Council of Europe:
The religion of Islam embodies the final and most com-
plete word of God … Departmentalization of life into
different watertight compartments, religious and secu-
lar, sacred and profane, spiritual and material is ruled
out … Islam is not a religion in the Western under-
standing of the word. It is a faith and a way of life, a
religion and a social order, a doctrine and a code of
conduct, a set of values and principles, and a social
movement to realize them in history.
—–From “The Terror of Islam,” 1995.
“They say [disapprovingly] that we were Cold Warriors. Yes, and a bloody good show, too. A lot of people weren’t Cold Warriors — and so much the worse for them.”
As quoted by Jay Nordlinger in “Robert Conquest — An Appreciation,” republished Sept. 15, 2015; originally publ. Dec. 9, 2002. Brackets in the Nordlinger quote.
Paul added the following comment to his original posting, and requested that it be posted. Happy to oblige. Minor editing to original (typo fixed, unnecessary break in exposition removed); Categories added. –Julie
[Original: Comment to "Bacon, Hobbes and a Coke Anyone?" by Paul Marks
November 2, 2015 at 7:51 pm]
Bentham gets worse over time. He starts off horrified by the violence the American War of Independence and (more) the French Revolution – he then draws the wrong conclusion that talk of “rights” and “natural law” is the cause of this violence (and can not even seem to tell the difference between the private property based American Revolution and the collectivist, Rousseau style, French Revolution) .
Bentham then decided to throw the baby out with the bath water – by rejecting any of natural rights (“nonsense on stilts”) or natural law, just accepting the Hobbesian Positivist definition of law as just the will of the ruler of rulers (despotism – tyranny).
But Bentham remains, sort of, free market for awhile – in that he wants the state to have absolute power (no natural rights or natural law either) but NOT use it much. But then he comes up with more and more statist ideas – ending in the 13 Departments of state that he hoped would control just about everything in a despotism that would have made the Ottoman Empire blush.
But Bentham is not an isolated example – this follower of Francis Bacon and Thomas Hobbes is the master of the Bowood Circle and the “Westminster Review” crowd. People such as James Mill and his son John Stewart Mill.
The new “liberalism” of endless attacks on the Crown (part of what Bentham claimed to be defending against the French Revolution), endless attacks against the Church of England (the Anglican Church) “Tory” people (many of whom were actually Old Whigs such as Edmund Burke) and so on.
Notice the TRICK (and it is a trick) – freedom has gone from wanting the state to be limited, to wanting “freedom from tradition” and “freedom from God” (“free” thinking as automatic atheism) and the desire for a NEW STATE.
A professional civil service (not people appointed by minister) controlled by “scientific” experts – as with Francis Bacon’s “The New Atlantis”.
An elected government with the vote for everyone – but the elections to be essentially FAKE, as the professional “experts” (people like James Mill and J.S. Mill) would really control everything regardless of who won the election – via a professional Civil Service and “education”.
And the land owners?
The people who the Old Whigs had rightly understood to be the foundation of liberty against the danger of an all mighty state.
The Westminster Review crowd Bentham’s bastard “liberal” children HATED the land owners as the “landed interest” – they wanted “free trade in land”, presented as the end of entails and so on, but really a Trojan Horse for land nationalisation.
For the domination of the STATE over land – as with the Ottoman Empire (and justified by the economics of David Ricardo – refuted by Frank Fetter).
This is the “little” secret behind the “liberalism” of Bentham and the Mills.
It is a “democratic” door way into the all mighty state of the Ottoman Empire – but without Islam.
Instead of Allah it is the state (the “scientific” “liberal” state) that would be worshipped – as long as it was controlled by “enlightened” experts (themselves) serving “the greatest good of the greatest number”.
Yes the above is unfair to the Mills – they (especially J.S. Mill) did have a real believe in freedom of speech and so on.
But they have no philosophy to back it up their belief in freedom of speech – the attempt to of J.S. Mill to reconcile his (sincere) belief in Freedom of Speech with his support for the unlimited New State (with an end to the “landed interest” and so on) is a terrible failure.
It is not “just” a lack of faith in God – it is the lack of any faith in any higher law (one can believe in natural justice without believing in God). Legal Positivism – the idea that the state has no foundational limits and that “law” is just the will of the ruler or rulers.
That is at the heart of the new “liberalism” – and it is what Mill (and modern “liberals”) get from Bentham, and he got from Thomas Bacon and Francis Bacon.
And Bentham (where ever you are) please note – this Legal Positivism is at the heart of the French Revolution you said you opposed.
Rousseau is not so different from Hobbes as people imagine – indeed they share fundamental principles.
The King (or rather despot) of Hobbes is like the “Lawgiver” or “the people” of Rousseau – there are no limits on their power.
The land of the Church (or individuals) can be looted by such a state and given to anyone they feel like giving it to.
Edmund Burke was correct – the “freedom” of the French Revolution was just old slavery in disguise.
The French Revolutionary regime was much the same as the despotism of the Ottoman Empire.
And so is an aspect (a side) of the new “liberalism” today.
And note this:
Religion is not actually the key point here.
For example Martin Luther was sincerely religious – but he embraced determinist philosophy and collectivist politics.
The Anglican position is (or was) fundamentally different – due to the influence of Richard Hooker and others.
And Ayn Rand was a passionate atheist (a mocker of silly religious people – people like me).
Yet Rand was also a passionate defender of humans as beings (agents – not the flesh robots of Martin Luther and Thomas Hobbes) and of natural justice.
Dark green jackets and black buttons – liberty and voluntary service can defeat Collectivist tyranny.
This day of evil is finally drawing to a close. The leftists in Paris may well have (as they do every year) slaughtered a pig – as part of their celebration of the treacherous betrayal (“come out – we promise you and your men safe conduct”) and savage murder of the Governor of an old fortress in Paris – a fortress in which there were seven (7) prisoners, none of whom were there for their political opinions.
Thus the left celebrate the principles of the left. Treachery, robbery (for the real goal of the operation was to steal weapons and other goods) and murder.
Soon all of France was to be convulsed in mass robbery (of the Church – and of many ordinary people who were far from “aristocratic”) and the murder of hundreds of thousands of people (see the works of William Doyle and others). And Europe was to be convulsed by the designs of the French Revolutionaries to bring the collectivist doctrines of Rousseau to power everywhere. His idea that the Law Giver knows the “General Will”, better than the individual persons themselves, so (in Marxist fashion) people have to be “forced to be free” against their false consciousness. If need be robbed and slaughtered – for their own good. And with their own consent – as their cries of protest (and screams of pain) are but mental confusion, not what they “really” believe.
The French Revolution does not show the danger of taking liberty too far – because it was not about liberty, it was about power. The Revolutionaries talked of liberty – but they lied, as followers of Rousseau tend to do (using their words as a mist to blind the unwary).
Paper money (forced on people on the pain of death), theft of property, the murder of the innocent (of all levels of society) – these were and are the principles of the French Revolution. Its criminal lust for unlimited power (not just in France – but over the world) under the mask of “liberty”, which destroyed the rule-of-law and the security of persons and possessions.
People who cried for religious tolerance (in fact granted by Louis XVI years before), and practiced religious persecution – of the most savage kind.
People who cried for the end of serfdom (largely unknown in France for centuries), and an end to torture (“putting the question” had actually already been abolished in French Roman Law), but actually introduced serfdom to the state, and reintroduced torture (in all its forms).
These were the French Revolutionaries – if one judges them by their deeds, or even looks carefully at the meaning of their words (rather than the nice sound the words make).
But let us leave the Rousseau evil of the Revolutionaries aside – and turn to more hopeful things, dark green jackets and black buttons…….
Sir William Stewart (Colonel Stewart) in 1799 (some ten years after the Revolution started – and after its forces had overwhelmed most of Europe with vast slaughter) published his thoughts on “light infantry”.
People who fought as individuals and in small groups – but could (if worked with correctly) help defeat vast enemy forces.
Colonel Stewart studied the Croats who had resisted (for the Hapsburgs) the invasions of the Ottomans – for centuries. Helping hold back the forces of despotism (that recognised no rule-of-law, no protection of property rights from the state) that might otherwise have destroyed Europe.
He also studied the mountain people of the Tyrol – famous for both their individualism and their loyal service (there is no contradiction – the people of Eastern Tennessee are much the same in these aspects, Southerners who supported human freedom over tribalism in the 1860s and have supported the elephant over the donkey ever since ).
The great revolt of Andreas Hofer – the innkeeper turned leader of the “Reactionary” forces of the Tyrol was yet to come (but the spirit had been known for centuries).
Hofer opposed the takeover of the Tyrol by Bavaria – not the relatively conservative place we know today, but then an ally of Revolutionary France and ruled by the bureaucrat (and rumoured ally of the illuminated ones) M. Von Montegelas – a man who made a great show of “abolishing serfdom” (actually just a few old rituals by this time in Bavaria) whilst actually introducing serfdom – both for children (via his system of compulsory state brainwashing of the young) and adults (via mass conscription). Nothing (not Church property, or even other countries, if they were small and weak – he was not a man of great courage ) was safe from Montegelas, a sort of “mini me” Napoleon. And Bavaria was backed by the vast forces of France.
Andreas Hofer eventually lost and was killed – famously giving the order to fire at his own execution. But the idea of light infantry is sound – it just can not win major wars on its own.
Nor should the experience of the North American wars, against the French and some Indian tribes, and against the American colonists, be forgotten. The “King’s Rifles” had already been born – although still in red jackets….
Sir William Stewart was supported by Colonel Manningham (Equerry to the King) and in 1800 the Rifle Corps (the 95 regiment of foot) was born.
It was the first British infantry regiment since the Civil War to have green uniforms – I recently went to a Civil War re enactment, and whilst everybody raves over the red uniforms of the New Model Army (red because the dye was cheap), but there is something about dark green uniforms against the green fields and woods (and not just of England). Yes it is camouflage – but it is more than that, but I lack the gift of words to explain what I mean.
People will be familiar with the exploits of “the Rifles” from such things as the “Sharpe” novels – but the basic message is historically accurate and simple to state.
By out fighting French skirmishers (not so well trained, or so well TRUSTED, and armed with muskets not Baker rifles) British skirmishers – fighting as individuals and in small groups, were able to help change battles (and thereby help change wars). Negate some of the advantage of the enemy in numbers – and cause confusion and chaos among French (and other) armies that were organised as vast masses of conscripts.
The forces “equality and fraternity” could be defeated by the forces of liberty. Skill, creative thought, and voluntary service.
Those men in dark green jackets with black buttons have (under various names of regiment) fought in many wars since then – surprising people who assume that the British army is a force of robots who do not fight as individuals and in small groups, and who can not think without detailed orders.
Their story is little known – and the reader should look it up for themselves.
It is all too easy to dismiss Enoch Powell as being both as bigoted and as racist as the members of the National Front (predecessor to the BNP) who adopted him as their latter day patron saint were, but to do so is to fall into the trap set by our enemies.
As with all intellectuals, he believed that even in politics, those with the better argument, supported by facts would win the day – how astonishingly naïve this now appears in our more cynical age, even then many of his fellow Tories knew he was likely to be proven right, but kept their own counsel and remained silent.
Nearly 50-years on since his infamous “Rivers of Blood” speech, the picture of the impact of immigration that he painted (at least in terms of pure numbers) appears worse than he predicted, but he also seems to have presumed a higher degree of ongoing ghettoization than has actually been the case.
NOTE – All indented quotes are taken directly from the text of the “Rivers of Blood” speech, my annotations are shown in red, between square brackets.
In 15 or 20 years [i.e. 1983 and 1988 respectively], on present trends, there will be in this country three and a half million Commonwealth immigrants and their descendants.
That is not my figure. That is the official figure given to parliament by the spokesman of the Registrar General’s Office.
There is no comparable official figure for the year 2000, but it must be in the region of five to seven million, approximately one-tenth of the whole population, and approaching that of Greater London.
Although his projected figures were described as “inflammatory” and “grossly exaggerated” by senior politicians at the time, comparing them with census records for 1981 he was pretty much spot on (3,429,100) and the 2001 census was at the lower end of his “five to seven million” estimate (4,896,600) although this census is acknowledged to be understated by about 500,000 people, the majority of which are believed to be missing immigrants numbers.
Although Powell touched on “integration” he did not seem to appreciate that it was the inherent fear of the unknown, simply passed off as “the inherent racial prejudice of the British lower classes” that created some (but not all) of the ghettoes.
The other dangerous delusion from which those who are wilfully or otherwise blind to realities suffer, is summed up in the word “integration.”
To be integrated into a population means to become for all practical purposes indistinguishable from its other members.
Now, at all times, where there are marked physical differences, especially of colour, integration is difficult though, over a period, not impossible.
There are among the Commonwealth immigrants who have come to live here in the last fifteen years or so, many thousands whose wish and purpose is to be integrated and whose every thought and endeavour is bent in that direction.
But to imagine that such a thing enters the heads of a great and growing majority of immigrants and their descendants is a ludicrous misconception, and a dangerous one.
One area where he was clearly lacked foresight was that many of the immigrants from the commonwealth were the educated middle class (at least in the context of their country of origin) and sufficiently aspirational that they broke the boundaries of the ghetto and relocated to suburbia as quickly as they were able, in fact I would go further and say that the injection of Hindu and Sikh immigration of the 1970′s forms the basis of much the entrepreneurial spirit of the subsequent decades and the strength of the SME sector in the UK today.
It is often forgotten that the context of his speech was the Race Relations Act of 1968 and his genuinely held belief that it would lead to the silencing of criticism over immigration and the impact on the working class.
But while, to the immigrant, entry to this country was admission to privileges and opportunities eagerly sought, the impact upon the existing population was very different.
For reasons which they could not comprehend, and in pursuance of a decision by default, on which they were never consulted, they found themselves made strangers in their own country.
They found their wives unable to obtain hospital beds in childbirth, their children unable to obtain school places, their homes and neighbourhoods changed beyond recognition, their plans and prospects for the future defeated; at work they found that employers hesitated to apply to the immigrant worker the standards of discipline and competence required of the native-born worker; they began to hear, as time went by, more and more voices which told them that they were now the unwanted.
They now learn that a one-way privilege is to be established by act of parliament; a law which cannot, and is not intended to, operate to protect them or redress their grievances is to be enacted to give the stranger, the disgruntled and the agent-provocateur the power to pillory them for their private actions.
In the final analysis, his fears may have been parochial and based upon a paternalistic attitude which I find patronising, but much of what he predicted has come to pass, especially in the context of Islamic and Romany immigration.
No Jewish person is going to look–especially if their family is originally from Czarist Russia. They’re never going to look on anything of Russian Communism with the same pure horror and fear and revulsion that they are going to bring to a reaction to Nazism.
–Christopher Hitchens, Christopher Hitchens, “Uncommon Knowledge,” July 15, 2004
Au contraire. I give you Ayn Rand.
The following post was occasioned by commentator Philip Scott Thomas in his remark “Perhaps I am naive, but I hadn’t realised until this week that the nihil nisi bonum rule was time-limited”
Given the ongoing attempt by the BBC and others to expunge Jimmy Savile from positive mention, for example by showing reruns of Top of the Pops*, but excluding or selectively editing those including the man himself, then surely the same should happen with the works of other sexual deviants such as Eric Gill (whose sculptures surround the exterior of Broadcasting House) or even Samuel Pepys, whose exploits with young Frances Tucker were documented in his own hand?
Young girls were his regular targets, some apparently pre-adolescent, like ‘little Mrs. Tooker’ the ‘very pretty child’ he made free with during the plague winter of 1665. She seems to have been accustomed to such treatment; there was no age of consent, and her mother was perfectly willing to hand her over and she to cooperate with Pepys; but to us she appears as a child victim, and by today’s standards, what he did would have earned him a prison sentence”
Eric Gill was arguably worse, committing acts of incest and bestiality of which a Julio-Claudian emperor would be proud.
His personal diaries describe his sexual activity in great detail including the claim that he sexually abused his two eldest daughters, had incestuous relationships with his sisters and performed sexual acts on his dog.
This aspect of Gill’s life was little known until publication of the 1989 biography by Fiona MacCarthy.”
Given the apparent return of Damnatio memoriae, should we similarly expunge the works of historical diarists, sculptors and the like or simply acknowledge the honest truth that those beyond this world are beyond the reach of sanction, if not post mortem condemnation.
I would imagine there would be a public outcry if Pepys tomb in St Olave’s church were ripped up and thrown in a skip as Jimmy Savile’s grave was, but then again, Samuel Pepys doesn’t still have a multi-million pound estate to plunder.
* – This is disputed by the BBC, but given the sheer volume of TOTP shows Saville either hosted or co-hosted, it is difficult to determine if this is absence of evidence or evidence of absence.
In this fight to retain our freedom, which is the root of the Garland flap, Shari’ah Law and Islamicisation of the West are the adversary. But the principles for which we fight are just as much if not more at risk in the project to Fundamentally Transform the Whole World into some Marxist-Leninist-Progressivist nightmare, and the means by which we fight Islamicisation are to be applied also in this other, all-encompassing fight.
As for the present instance: If we held such events as “Draw Mohammed” every month (but responsibly, as the Garland event was held); if we met every attempt at intimidation by being unimpressed, for instance if our own papers had published the Danish cartoons; such actions would show our enemies that we mean what we say, we will stick by it, we will stand by our principles and defend them in word and deed. If the enemy then wants to impose his will on us by force, by terrorism and war, he will have at least some evidence that we will not run from the fight, fearfully and virtuously clucking our disapproval of it.
With luck he might conjecture that while we would prefer not to meet force with force, we certainly will do so if it is necessary in order for us to live our lives as free men and women and not as serfs or slaves who are at the disposal of other human beings and who are allowed to exist only at their pleasure; and that if we are forced to war in self-defense, we have more than enough strength of will to prevail.
In the ’30′s, Britain and France telegraphed their reluctance to face the facts and to defend themselves against force with force. The guy with the moustache picked up the message and calculated that he could get away with it…and almost did.
How many times must we repeat the same mistake!
Now this, on relatively recent American History.
You Brits aren’t the only ones who play the Election Game, y’know. Ours comes up in about 18 months, and at Salon some unrepentant underminer of liberty named Eric Lee has seen fit to write “A Lesson for Bernie Sanders” on the topic.
For those who are going, “Bernie Sanders — Who He?”: He is the avowedly Socialist Senator from Vermont who has decided to run for the Presidency next year.
So why should Zanzibarians, or even Americans for that matter, care about Bernie Sanders’ political ambitions? No particular reason, except that we all have a liberty interest in seeing that such ambitions die like a beached flounder, but with less fuss.
(Although Sanders has annoyed many by refusing to get with the gun-control program. In fact Slate throws its toys out of the pram over his non-compliance with the Democratic-Progressive required stance on the issue.
(Additionally, many find Sanders far more honest than Shrill, not terribly difficult of course.)
I wouldn’t lose any sleep over this one, but the history is interesting.
Mr. Lee’s “Lesson” describes Michael Harrington’s insinuation of socialism into the ideology and agenda of the Democratic Party, with its successful shoving of the Party leftward, and the result (as Mr. Lee believes, anyhow) of Mr. Harrington’s being persuaded not to run for the Presidency himself in 1980.
For a fuller account, see Dr. Ron Radosh’s book Divided They Fell.
The column commences:
The socialist revolt that America forgot: A history lesson for Bernie Sanders
Bernie Sanders is a singular figure in modern U.S. politics, the lone self-identified socialist to serve in Congress, at a time when mainstream American attitudes, if not actively violent towards socialism as they have been in the past, remain nonetheless fundamentally suspicious. As such, his plans to run against Hillary Clinton in the 2016 Democratic primaries represent something of an anomaly. What bears mentioning about Sanders’ run, however, is that it is not the first time a prominent socialist has considered a bid for the Democratic nomination. To understand the significance of Sanders’ candidacy, it’s worth flashing back to the summer of 1978, as liberal Democrats were growing increasingly disillusioned with Jimmy Carter’s presidency.
The Mail has a non-story about the Duke of Wellington. Apparently the BBC has a thing coming soon about the Iron Duke’s shagging. Obviously not about his strategy and tactics because this is the BBC. So are they trying to gut a national hero? We all knew he had he liked the ladies but who doesn’t?
The Mail commentariat seem obsessed with Blucher. Like I haven’t heard of the Prussian! Like anyone hasn’t? And a lot of snark at Wellington being a git.
Now, what I do know is a quote from the Iron Duke,
My heart is broken by the terrible loss I have sustained in my old friends and companions and my poor soldiers. Believe me, nothing except a battle lost can be half so melancholy as a battle won.
Letter from the field of Waterloo (June 1815), as quoted in Decisive Battles of the World (1899) by Edward Shepherd Creasy
So, I doubt he was hated by his men.
Wellington outdid himself. Not only did he defeat Boney he then went to Paris and shagged his mistress.
I like the cut of his jib. That is like Ike knocking-up Eva Braun (and Zukhov giving Blondie a good seeing-to). When you defeat someone stick ‘em on St Elba and then shag their bird. No come-back from that is there? I think the phrase is “Utterly Pwned”.
I kinda thought they should have called the channel tunnel the “Napoleon Line” (it was sort of his idea) for it would terminate at Waterloo.
But that is for The Iron Duke – he shoots, he scores. top quality handing it to the Froggies in Spades.
We need to do much the same to ISIS and Pooty. We gotta get medieval on their asses. And I mean proper medieval. I saw the video of them burning alive the Jordanian pilot in a cage. I’m not linking but you can find it if you wish. It is the most horrific thing I ever saw and if I live to 100 I doubt it will be bested. After seeing that – no mercy. None. It is bayonet work on the wounded. Sorry, but it is.
A couple of the questions for the post Christmas period: Ancient Greek learning and English freedom – religious and political.
The Republic of Venice, like some other Italian States, was in contact with the Greek (Byzantine) Empire to the east, where Ancient Greek learning was preserved, from the most early days – contact was never lost in the Dark Ages. And the other states of Europe were in close contact with the Republic of Venice and the other Italian states. Yet the education system teaches that Greek learning came only from Islamic Spain. Is this theory really true?
Did, for example, thinkers in the British Isles such as the Irish thinkers from the 5th (indeed reaching back to Patrick and Pelagius [yes Pelagius, that free will scholar of Greek and possibly Hebrew, - of course I would drag him into it] of Roman Britain) century to the 9th century (before old Ireland was destroyed by the Vikings), or the English thinkers of the 12th century and so on (not just Roger Bacon there were other great Greek scholars and scientific thinkers also), really get their knowledge of Greek from Islamic Spain? Of course both the Greek Orthodox Church and the old Irish Celtic Church are not known for the delight in the predestination of Augustine – even if philosopher theologians do strange twisted gymnastics to try and reconcile predestination and moral responsibility (the reality of choice – of the existence of the human agent). Just as Judaism has always rejected predestination (unlike mainstream Islam) and stood for individual moral responsibility – the reality of choice, of the human person.
In almost every case the Reformation of the 16th century led to a Church that was committed to Predestination and was a department of State – after all Predestination was the central doctrine of Martin Luther and John Calvin (they both HATED freedom and reason), and Luther taught that the State should control the State and Calvin taught that the Church should control the State – the autonomy of Church and State was utterly alien to both these thinkers. In England it led, by the 18th century, to a Church that was far MORE in favour of moral responsibility, free will, (hostile to Predestination and so on) than the Roman Catholic Church was, and to a Church that was largely part of the landed interest (backed by local patrons and so on as well as being a, largely, independent landowner itself) rather than being a department of state – an “Established Church” rather than a “State Church”. A Church that was theologically and socially radically different from the rest of Protestant Europe. Why?
Even in the 16th century someone like Richard Hooker (the three legged stool – scripture, tradition, and REASON) seems distinctly English – distinctly “Anglican” (a possible misuse of language – but I hope you get my point), by the 17th century philosopher theologians such as Henry Moore and Ralph Cudworth, perhaps the greatest Greek and Hebrew scholar of his age, are quite acceptable in England, but would have seemed radially alien in the Protestant nations of Europe (and in the centralised Counter Reformation Catholic world) – with the possible exception of the minority tradition in Holland, the Arminian tradition (and remember it was the MINORITY tradition in Holland).
Why was England so weird in its Church development? Unlike both Catholic Europe and Protestant Europe.
I have asked these questions before – but just received utterly irrelevant answers such as “Ralph Cudworth believed in witchcraft”, yes he did (so did the great Common Law thinkers Hales and Selden), but why did the Church in England (both Anglican such as Granville Sharpe and William Wilberforce and Dissenting such as Richard Price [but also his Anglican political opponent Edmund Burke] – or a bit of both such as John Wesley) contain so many people, such as Cudworth and Moore and….., who believed in religious toleration and moral responsibility, free will – hostile to predestination. Why did the English Church turn out, in the main, so differently from the rest of Europe?
So was there no movement of Greek learning from the Byzantine Empire directly to the states of Italy? Was it all via Islamic Spain? Even though Venice was technically part of the Eastern Empire itself? The “Islamic Spain is what matters” idea seems like a unlikely theory. But I am willing to be corrected.
And why did the Church in England, certainly by the 18th century, turn out so different from both Protestant and Catholic Europe? I suspect that the answer to this question is the key to the different POLITICAL development of this land in the late 17th century and the 18th century, compared to the rest of Europe.