Wednesday, November 11, 2009

In the gutter

I've been critical of UKIP in the past for the way - when asked a question - they turn every little issue into something about the EU. Whether it is about education, immigration, defence or crime, whatever they are asked to comment on, they mention our membership of the EU.

My criticism is based on the fact that by doing so they tend to alienate potential voters. It's not that UKIP are wrong - it's just that voters are rarely able to see or comprehend the big picture required to fully grasp the implications of how our membership of the affects how some policy areas.

From my point of view, I would rather that when UKIP are asked about something - crime, for example - they would just simply and clearly explain what their policy is on crime without mentioning the EU. If, and only if, someone then says "you can not do that, because the EU won't allow it" then you explain that they can and will do it because they will have taken Britain out of the EU.

There are many, many problems and challenges facing this country. Some of them are a direct result of our membership of the EU; some are an indirect consequence of our membership of the EU and some have nothing to do with our membership of the EU. However, our membership of the EU does prevent us doing what is necessary to start putting a lot of what is wrong right.

UKIP are right to insist that we can not even begin to start sorting out the mess we are in until we leave the EU, but they must be careful not to be seen as blaming the EU for all the ills we suffer. That is what turns voters off.

The fundamental cause of our decline was not our joining the EU, though. It was, instead, the result of Gramscian cultural Marxism and "the long march through the institutions" that began in the 1930's. This "long march" made some limited progress during the next thirty years, but it was slow and remained on the fringe of society. It wasn't until the 1960's when real progress started to be made and the main reason for this was the removal of the one thing that Gramsci foresaw as the biggest barrier to cultural Marxism - the presence of Christianity that underpinned societal morality.

It was only when this morality was torn down - principally, by the students of the 1960's who now sit in government of virtually every western nation - that cultural Marxism really took hold. The vast majority of Britain's problems today can be traced back to the 1960's and that cultural revolution - the explosion of crime, welfare dependency as a way of life, the assertion of rights over responsibilities, the rise of teenage pregnancies and abortion, increased violence - just about everything.

The reason was simple - Christianity was the crutch that upheld society. When you kick away the crutch, don't be surprised when it ends up in the gutter.


Mark Wadsworth said...

I agree on the UKIP points, most helpful, but then you drift off a bit. I'm not sure what the 'demise' of Christianity has to do with anything.

Stan said...

I was trying to explain that the EU prevents us from starting to put right the things that have gone wrong, but it was not necessarily the reason why things went wrong in the first place.

The real cause of the problems that have engulfed this country are a direct result of the collapse of the Christian morality that underpinned British society - and that this collapse was not accidental. Gramsci considered Christianity to be the biggest barrier to Marxism and the whole point of cultural Marxism was to subvert Christianity.

Since then no one has managed to come up with a suitable replacement, but the EU - and its ridiculous attempts to proclaim "human rights" without responsibility - is seen by many on the left and the right as a possible moral stabiliser. Of course it isn't - not now and never will be, but there isn't anything else.

Except Islam. I know you won't agree, but the choice for this nation is stark in its simplicity. Either we regain our historic faith and return to a Christian based society or we will become an Islamic republic. We will not remain in this faith free anarchic mess forever and nothing else will fill the void.

Larry said...

You're so right, Stan. When I watch the news nowadays, I feel like I'm Alice in Wonderland. Black is white, up is down, and the truth has different versions according to the government-media complex.

Christianity WAS the crutch that held up society (and that's coming from a non-believer), but the swine in the media will attack and ridicule Christianity while apologising for and justifying atrocities carried out in the name of Allah.

Microcephalics, the lot of them.

Stan said...

I'm glad that you can see it that way, Larry. Most non-believers see the word Christianity and snort derision even with the reality is staring them in the face (i.e. the collapse of morality in Britain since the decline of Christianity and the rise of Islam in its place).

I think it's important to understand also that I do not advocate a forced acceptance of Christianity - nothing could be further from the truth. What I am saying is that we have to start teaching the ethics of Christianity to our children from a very young age as we once did. It's not easy to explain what that means in a few sentences, but - for example - it means that if we must have sex education then we should teach that sex is not a recreation but something that should be part of a long term loving relationship and preferably between a married couple.

It also means the return of moral certainty over moral relativism. It is wrong to steal, wrong to lie, wrong to cheat and so on. We must be far less equivocal about a whole range of matters. The only way we can do this is by choosing a "moral baseline" upon which most of us agree and beyond which it is unacceptable for anyone to transgress. Christianity provides that moral baseline - more than that it is well known, straightforward and doesn't require religious compliance to accept.

Anonymous said...

Spot on the money as usual Stan.

And to all the 'enlightened' ones who snear at anything Christian. I hope you enjoy life here in the UK, wearing a burqua or watching someone who has been raped being stoned to death for sexual immorality...

It'll be too late by then....


Larry said...

The American media are infected with political correctness also. At present, they're busy trying to find excuses for the muslim who killed and maimed over 40 soldiers at Fort Hood, Texas. They are actually saying that it wasn't terrorism and that Islam shouldn't be blamed, but that he was "stressed". The fact that he screamed "In the name of Allah" in Arabic seems to have escaped their attention.

Liberalism is a mental disorder.

Lawrence Newman said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Larry Newman said...


The problem is that anyone who voices dissent and says it like it is about the threat of Islamification gets told to put their tin foil hat back on.

The Left control the language, therefore they control the argument.

bernard said...

Stan, by partly blaming Antonio Gramsci you are starting to sound like Melanie Phillips.
The impact he had on Western thinking was not that dramatic. For a start he barely budged out of Italy (Rome)and had a brief flirtation with Moscow when his family stayed there. He never came here or visited the USA, which would normally have been high on anyone's itinerary.
The truth is more prosaic; ALL Civilisations come,... and then go.
The Western one looks like a rather short spell as compared to say the mighty Roman empire which, you may recall, only became Christianised towards its very end.
As Edward Gibbons observed, it was then that it started to decline!

Stan said...

Hang on there, bernard - I'm not "blaming" Gramsci - I'm blaming British radical socialists!! Gramsci only gets a mention because he is the one who put the theory into words, but it would be wrong to assume that the idea of cultural marxism was his and his alone. It was partly a response to the cultural Marxism in Italy - and had been going on in Germany for some years after the First World War - that fascism was spawned.

I only use Gramsci because it was he who formulated what was already happening in a disorganised way across western Europe into a recognisable concept. He didn't invent it and it would be wrong to say that it was ever an organised movement.

Indeed, my argument has always been that of Hayek - that it was the rise of socialist inspired intellectualism and the "second hand dealers in ideas" that presented the greatest threat to liberal democracy. There is no doubt that one of those ideas that they dealt wth second hand was Gramscianism. Let me quote from Hayek ....

"Newspapers in "capitalist" ownership, universities presided over by "reactionary" governing bodies, broadcasting
systems owned by conservative governments, have all been known to influence public
opinion in the direction of socialism, because this was the conviction of the personnel.
This has often happened not only in spite of, but perhaps even because of, the attempts
of those at the top to control opinion and to impose principles of orthodoxy...... The result of this is that today in most parts
of the Western World even the most determined opponents of socialism derive from socialist sources their knowledge on most subjects on which they have no firsthand

I hope that explains my view more clearly. Gramsci is important only as a name to apply to the concept. He is no more a direct influence on those who carry out his ideas than Macchiavelli is over the man who cheats and lies to improve his career.

Stan said...

And on the subject of the role of Christianity on the decline of the Roman Empire - well, maybe it did have an effect and maybe it didn't. What I do know, though, is that the nation of England (and western civilisation in general) was built on the foundations of Christianity and only began to decay when we abandoned the principle.

Perhaps it would be more accurate to say that a civilisation goes into decline when the prevailing culture is replaced by something which is foreign to that civilisation?

bernard said...

...point taken, Stan.

Frank Davis said...

I think you've put your finger on a profound malaise. But I don't think you've found the way out.

Either we regain our historic faith and return to a Christian based society or we will become an Islamic republic.

As I see it, it's been our slowly emerging scientific world view - slowly emerging over centuries - that's has been slowly strangling Christianity. There's simply no place for God in it. Nor for the Christian cosmos of Heaven and Hell and the Day of Judgment and the Second Coming. Our science is amoral. It doesn't have a moral dimension. It eats away at Christian faith, but has nothing to replace it with.

And there's no way back. There's no way to recover that lost faith. Or there's no more of a way back to it than there was for the Greeks to recover the pantheon of Zeus and Hera and Apollo. That also is lost forever. Along with the multiple Egyptian pantheons of Ptah and Sekhmet and Nefertum and all the rest (so many). It's gone.

And it's for this same reason that Islam will never triumph either. Because Islam is just another variant of Judaic and Christian monotheism, and it also is being slowly ground into dust by scientific rationality. Which is probably why Islam is up in arms. They're fighting to survive. That's probably the only difference between Christianity and Islam: one has quietly surrendered, and the other one fights on.

No, the future must be for us humans to put together a morality that is independent of these sorts of myths. A rational morality. We don't have one yet. But one day we will.

Or at least I hope so.

Stan said...

Thanks for commenting, Frank - but I profoundly disagree.

First of all I do not see an incompatibilty between God and science - nor do I believe that this is the view of most scientists, just the militant atheist ones. I think most scientists adopt an agnostic rather than atheist position.

Secondly, science has been with us since the dawn of human civilisation. It was science that gave us formed tools to work with, the ability to cultivate crops, build shelters and ships and so on - but it was God that gave us the ability to master science. It's my belief that "The Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil" as mentioned in Genesis is actually referring to science rather than conscience as is usually asserted.

And yet science and religion have lived happily side by side for millenia - it was science that enabled the Greeks to build the Parthenon, the Egyptians to build the pyramids and the ancient Britons to erect Stonehenge. Science has enabled Chrstendom to construct some of the greatest monuments mankind has ever achieved so there is clearly no incompatibility between God and science.

It is only in the last 50 years that there has been a decline in Christianity in this country. Most people of my parents generation still believe in God and still follow Christian principles.

Thirdly, Islam is growing at a massive rate - in this country as well as worldwide. The rise of Islamic militancy is not because they are fighting to survive - it is because they now see that victory is within their grasp.

You will never find a "rational morality" because rationality allows a person to bypass morality if they believe they can do so without their transgression being discovered. Ask yourself the question - if you could obtain a million pounds illegally knowing that you would never be caught and brought to justice then what is there to stop you? It would be irrational to not take the money!

As I have tried countless times to explain on this blog and other sites the whole concept of the "rule of law" breaks down in the absence of God which is why we have an increasingly intrusive state. As I have said again and again - in the absence of an omnipresent God, the only alternative is an omnipresent state.

Frank Davis said...

First of all I do not see an incompatibilty between God and science - nor do I believe that this is the view of most scientists, just the militant atheist ones. I think most scientists adopt an agnostic rather than atheist position.

There is an inherent incompatibility between any two different explanations of the world. Science means, after all, 'knowing'. It's not, as you seem to think, merely technology. And our modern science explains more and more about the world, including about the nature of life itself, which it was quite unable to do only a few centuries ago.

How many people really believe these days that they are vitalised by an immortal soul? It's rather hard to believe that when you have a biological account of life as composed of cells and DNA, and in which there is no place for a soul.

My guess is that most scientists are atheists rather than agnostics. They're just mostly not militant about it in the manner of the rather obnoxious Richard Dawkins. What, anyway, is the substantive difference between an atheist and an agnostic?

And it's not just scientists, but ordinary people who have absorbed a scientific understanding of life.

It is only in the last 50 years that there has been a decline in Christianity in this country.

It's been going on far longer than that. There's been an exponential growth of agnosticism/atheism for centuries. It is in the nature of exponentials that they produce seemingly sudden, overnight changes.

Thirdly, Islam is growing at a massive rate

Only 50 years ago, Islam was moribund. If it is growing vigorously now it can only be among bullied and ill-educated people. Nobody with the scientific mentality of which I speak is going to cease to be a Christian and then promptly become a Muslim. I do not meet native British people who have converted to Islam.

Ask yourself the question -

That is a hypothetical question. In practice I am always able to commit any number of far smaller crimes without attracting penalties, and yet I do not do so. Why not?

the whole concept of the "rule of law" breaks down in the absence of God which is why we have an increasingly intrusive state.

I think that's true if 'the absence of God" is replaced with "the absence of belief in God". And the absence of belief in all the values
attendant on such a belief. So I completely agree with you that we are experiencing a profound moral crisis - and one which, like so much else in our society, is not discussed in our trivial and trivialising media.

Nevertheless, I continue to believe that we must continue in the path of science, of deepening understanding of the universe, and hope for a new moral enlightenment, equivalent to any previous enlightenment. That is, of course, a sort of faith, I realise. But as I see it there is simply no way back. We can't turn back into pious Christians again. Nor can we turn into Muslims either. We must find some other way.

I realise that you entirely disagree, but I would nevertheless like to thank you for your consideration.

Larry Newman said...

"Science means, after all, 'knowing'. It's not, as you seem to think, merely technology. And our modern science explains more and more about the world"

Yeah, like globull warming explains everything and should be viewed as the truth because "scientists" say it's true.