Don’t flatter yourself Melanie Phillips – it’s called a political debate


8:02 pm - August 2nd 2011

by Sunny Hundal    


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We already know that Melanie Phillips inhabits a weird parallel universe. Now she thinks I’m “obsessed” by her, merely I’ve pointed out the glaring holes in her recent articles.

Don’t flatter yourself Melanie. How about we stick to the politics instead of indulging your paranoia? Let’s ignore the delusional attempt at calling this some ‘obsession’. If Phillips dpesn’t like people highlighting her contradictions – she should stop writing about politics.

She blogs today in response to my piece yesterday:

First, he appears not to understand the difference between someone who commits mass murder because they are deranged and someone who commits mass murder in pursuit of a political, religious or ideological goal.

Even after his attack Breivik was quite clear on why he carried out mass murder. Even today he issued a list of demands that included over-throwing Norwegian and European societies, presumably because he feels they are racially tainted.

Or perhaps Melanie Phillips should go back to the manifesto that Breivik wrote, if she thinks he had no clear ideological goal. He wrote a whole chapter dedicated to how Western society needs to be reformed and what his goals were.

He also makes this prediction:

* * * * * * * * *
European Civil War, Phase 1 – 1999-2030
– Islam, 2-30% based on country
– Open source warfare, military shock attacks by clandestine cell systems.
– Further consolidation of conservative forces.

European Civil War, Phase 2 – 2030-2070
– Islam, 15-40% based on country
– Consolidation continues, more advanced forms of resistance groups.
– Preparation for pan-European coup d’états.

European Civil War, Phase 3 – 2070-2083
– Islam, 30-50% based on country
– Pan-European coup d’états. Cultural Communism/multiculturalism defeated in the first

European country followed by the rest.
– The implementation of a Cultural Conservative political agenda begins.
– Execution of cultural Marxist/multiculturalist category A and B traitors initiated.
– Deportation of Muslims initiated.

* * * * * * * * *

For Phillips to imply Breivik did not have clear ideological or political goals shows how shockingly ignorant and uninformed she is.

Of course, this is part of her attempt to down-play the ideological motivations behind Breivik’s terrorism and pretend he was not driven by specific ideology, but was just ‘mad’.

Phillips goes on to say:

Second, he appears not to understand the difference between the impact of mainstream analysis of social and cultural trends on the one hand and incitement to hatred and mass murder on the other. He seems to believe that the former is just as likely to cause someone to commit mass murder as the latter. He thus defames the former while sanitising the latter.

This is even odder.

Lots of analysis of ‘social and cultural trends’ can be mainstream. An obsession with the birth-rate of Jews and ‘concerns’ that they are ‘changing the face of British society’ could be seen as legitimate by some. But it would also betray a broader anti-semitic outlook that singles out Jews as a possible danger to society.

The same applies to Muslims. If someone is constantly obsessed by the birthrate of Muslims and paints every incident by any Muslim as a sign that they are wrecking society – then that signifies a similar bigotry.

To pretend some analysis cannot be racist and cannot incite people into violence is just painfully clueless.

Her third point doesn’t even make sense.

I also do find it amusing that Melanie Phillips accuses me of ‘obsession’ given I have blogged on her a few times. How does that compare to the thousands of articles she has written just about Muslims? What would that be called?

Update: I forgot to respond to her reference to ‘the Arabs’. That was made on this post – and it’s in the first paragraph of the blog-post. Saying it just refers to specific people not all Arabs looks highly disingenuous since the context isn’t there. I’m sure people can make up their own mind on it.

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About the author
Sunny Hundal is editor of LC. Also: on Twitter, at Pickled Politics and Guardian CIF.
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Reader comments


Typical right wing nut. They have all the characteristics of the school bully. In particular they are very good at dishing it out, but not so good at taking it.

I can feel a ‘madness’ diagnosis coming-on from Phillips.

Sunny, I dislike Mel too, but this battle based on assumptions about a lunatic is really not on. As I wrote before, until we know more it is entirely unjustified to make any point based upon second guesses about that Norwegian murderer’s motives.

There are plenty of tinfoil hatters out there who may have produced manifestos as extensive as that murdering bastard. They may be left, right of in outer space and have deeply eccentric views but they are distinguished by not being mass killers. Why? That is the question, surely?

I find this little spat between you and Philips deeply distasteful because the two of you are trying to use assumptions and guesses about a mass murderer to bolster your arguments. You in particular should be able to rise above such temptations.

You in particular should be able to rise above such temptations.

Rubbish. The idea that his terrorism – aimed at the government and people from the Labour party – on the back of a 1,500 manifesto and years of writing comments and articles utterly obsessed by one topic – were not related is just naive.

You might not like it, but the idea that I’m going to pretend this sort of poison has no impact on people’s actions is not going to happen.

“If Phillips dpesn’t like people highlighting her contradictions – she should stop writing about politics.”

Rofl.

Ok Sunny, but with respect, you’ll have to be very careful not to come out of this tiff looking untainted.

Concern troll at 3.

As Sunny says this kind of right wing hate has been put out there for years by the likes of mad Mel and her loon friends in the US. She must deal with the fact that her views inspire the same kind of fanatic , religious terrorists that she so claims to dislike.

Very little difference between this Norwegian right wing religious terrorist and the kind Mel hates. Except of course they are mirror images of themselves.

Oooh, I’m a concern troll!

For goodness sake, grow up.

I did a little experiment to see how easily M.Phillips’ recent piece (1 August 2011
“Hatred, smears and liberals bullying us into silence”) could be reversed if we replace Breivik and Norway with Nidal Malik Hasan and Fort Hood. The answer is easily. Here is the result:

The baleful effects of the recent attacks in Fort Hood, where Nidal Malik Hasan killed 14 people and wounded 29 others, have not been limited to that horrific carnage.

For the atrocity has produced a reaction among people on the political Right in Britain, Europe and the U.S. that is in itself shocking and terrifying.

Melanie Phillips has said that, in response to the violent attacks, Islamic leaders and groups like the Muslim Brotherhood should use a more ‘cautious’ approach when talking about the West and Israel.

The Muslim Brotherhood has said the West has failed, and has also talked about ‘Western Imperialism’ as a cause of terrorism.

Phillips, however, said Islamic leaders would be ‘playing with fire’ if they continued to use rhetoric that could be exploited by extremists such as Hasan.

This is because Hasan’s so-called manifesto shows that he is violently against Western Imperialism, Israeli expansion — and that he wants the forced repatriation of non-Muslims from Islamic countries and the murder of all who defy Islam.

But to connect such abhorrent ravings with the Mainstream Muslim’s comments is simply grotesque.

First and foremost, this is treating Hasan as if his words deserve to be taken seriously and at face value.

As of now, however, we don’t know whether Hasan is psychotic, a psychopath or under the influence of all the drugs he claims to have taken.

We also don’t know what part, if any, his political views actually played in this atrocity.

After all, since his target was his country’s Military one might just as well surmise that he was motivated by job stresses.

In any event, someone who opens fire on his co-workers cannot be considered rational.

Yet Phillips is treating Hasan as if he is a political terrorist whose words have the authority of a sane and coherent creed.

Even if he was motivated by hostility to the West or Israel, it is perverse to suggest that no one should write about these things because some deranged person raving about such ideas has run amok.

It’s a bit like saying no one should express concern about late abortions or animal cruelty because it leads straight to the firebombing of abortion clinics or animal-testing laboratories.

Israel and Western Imperialism raise entirely legitimate and very serious concerns about defending a culture from attack both from within and from without.

Phillips seems to be cynically exploiting the murder of 14 innocents to make a connection which is as obnoxious as it is opportunistic in order to bully into silence those who express such legitimate democratic concerns.

Shockingly, she is merely one of many who are doing so.

As soon as the atrocity happened, people on the Right saw a heaven-sent opportunity to smear mainstream Islamic thinkers and writers by making a grossly distorted association between Hasan’s attack and their ideas.

They claimed that anyone on ‘the Left’ who had spoken out against Western Imperialism or Israeli agression was complicit in the atrocity and therefore had a moral duty to stop writing about such things.

d alarm all decent people everywhere.

Yeah.. Sunny’s right. Tangle with the Phillips biotch!

11. theophrastus

“The idea that his terrorism – aimed at the government and people from the Labour party – on the back of a 1,500 manifesto and years of writing comments and articles utterly obsessed by one topic – were not related is just naive.”

Are you channelling John Prescott, Sunny?

12. Paul Newman

Breivi isn`t primarily a politically motivated terrorist. He is a fantasist whose fantasies took a political form, of a sort. Is he a Mandela, a Gerry Adams, a Bin Laden a 7.7. bomber ? Ridiculous !
Does he really have goals or stature comparable to these real cold but entirely sane men, their network, their ability to use terror over time ? Is anyone terrified ? Nope,reason being he was a lone nut who aint going to be negotiating a Good Friday agreement in this life .
You are pandering to this man`s delusions about himself, firstly by taking his politics seriously( bet he would love that) and then extending the odium of his blood lust to those in the unfortunate position of sharing elements of his claimed beliefs and concerns Its like comparing someone who likes sex with a rapist on the basis sex is involved. Deeply deeply wrong

12. Fallacious troll. You’re the one making those particular comparisons.

On “the arabs”, that’s a feeble defence.

And anyway, she has form:

the Arabs have made it crystal clear that the real focus of their murderous hatred is Judaism itself…

Just look at her go [my emphasis]:

…the ‘killing’ was staged by the Arabs…the central strategic importance to the Arabs of such blood libels and a multitude of other fabrications which they use to inspire hatred of Israel…So important is it to turn the world against Israel that the Arabs will sacrifice their own children to do so…Such propaganda ‘psy-ops’ are therefore a key weapon in the Arab armoury….

Some people may be prepared to accept that accusing the “the Arabs”, en bloc, of sacrificing their own children to advance their “murderous hatred of Judaism” falls under the banner of “mainstream analysis of social and cultural trends”.

But personally I’d call it inciting racial hatred.

Pual Newman @ 12

Breivi isn`t primarily a politically motivated terrorist.

That is simply outrageous. This man went to a Labour Party camp and unleashed a murder spree on the young people there. He did this because he openly and quite violently disagreed with the political ideology that these people espouse. Not only that he is on record as openly criticising that Party and the ideology. Whether his ‘goals’ are comparable to Gerry Adams or his stature is comparable to a 7/7 bomber (!) is not the point, he was undoubtedly motivated by politics.

Lets say someone turns up at the Tory conference and sprays a dozen or so with bullets, would your first instinct be ‘a random motiveless nutter’? Are you seriously suggesting you wouldn’t look at his internet footprint to find a Left Wing angle? Come on Paul, you are not convincing anyone with that.

I wonder why the ‘Right’ are so loath to accept this? What have the Right got to lose conceding that this guy was motivated by his political leanings?

Paul, who are you attempting to persuade by this nonsense and to what ends? You cannot be possibly be trying to convince anyone with an I.Q. above 80 that someone who specifically went to a Labour Party camp and killed a few dozen was not actually motivated by politics?

So, what are you trying to say? Being a paranoid anti Islamic, anti immigration gun fiend doesn’t make you a bad person?

One of the your mob ran amock with a gun and killed 90 people. Accept that andget over it

16. Charlieman

Sunny, I really think that you should not have posted this piece. I can’t tell you that you should have ignored the Melanie Phillips piece, but your instinct should have told you so. Draft the argument in fury, reflect and delete.

But you shouldn’t have published it. It isn’t a fine piece of writing, and it doesn’t help us to understand whether extremists act on the words of right wing writers, or whether they are extremists looking for an excuse. Neither does Phillips, of course, and you should not be following her logic.

Here is Melanie Phillips writing about the Fort Hood Shooting:

“Nevertheless, people are still suggesting that he just snapped — possibly under the impact of, wait for it, post-traumatic stress arising from military conflict. In other words, he was not a religious fanatic but was merely deranged”

It seems dismissing someone as deranged is not okay when that person is a Muslim.

It seems dismissing someone as deranged is not okay when that person is a Muslim.

That is pretty much how Phillips seems to operate. One standard for Muslims – another standard for white far-right terrorists.

Actually Charlieman, I wrote this piece in bemusement rather than anger. And I’m quite pleased with it. She’s showing her true colours the more she writes on the subject.

19. Paul Newman

Jim you are quite wrong. Lets say a would be messiah spouting some garbled pot pourri of anarchist anti capitalism dogs-on-stringery, working alone, managed to bomb the conference. I would not dream of granting him the sort of significance he dreamt of in his sweaty bed, and certainly not to encouraging the idea that this formed any part of ordinary political disagreement.
I would be saying, “Jim let us sit, you and I ,join hands,and celebrate the bonds of humanity and reasonableness that bind us even though we may disagree”.

Kum bay ya, my Lord, kum bay ya;
Kum bay ya, the Lord, kum bay ya;…….

Are you singing Jim ? ..Are you ?

I always use the bellweather of how many nutters agree with her.

Look at the amount of them in the last Mad Mel link you published

To say the like of Breitvik and others would not be egged on by such journalism is just plain wrong.

I was on the metro in paris once and saw a woman clinging onto her bag for dear life, staring up terrified at every non-white person who got on the train. She looked practically about to faint when arabic man sat down next to her.

Thats how I imagine M.Phillips would ride the underground… if she could bare the risk becoming victim of Islamic anti-semetic anti-zionist, pro-multicultural, pro-marxist Jihad that is…

@ Jim

One of the your mob ran amock with a gun and killed 90 people.

Jesus. Read that again, mate, and be ashamed.

Sunny started this shallow spat with a shameful article trying to score a cheap political point from tragic events and, having got his fish on the hook, he is now trying to play it for all he is worth.

Equally shameful, I’m afraid.

Sunny,

You just can’t stop needling at her can you? Can’t you see how silly all of this makes you appear. Obviously not.

Having put in all the hard work to make Liberal Conspiracy a recognised forum for political discussion you are turning it into a place merely to vent your personal dislikes. Give Glenn Mulcaire a call – I’m sure he can give you a bit of advice about how to do this kind of thing properly.

Well, I cannot wait until you try taking on Peter Hitchens. That really will be fun.

Or perhaps Melanie Phillips should go back to the manifesto that Breivik wrote, if she thinks he had no clear ideological goal. He wrote a whole chapter dedicated to how Western society needs to be reformed and what his goals were.

He also makes this prediction:

And the prediction is totally bonkers.
It’s like Dr. Fu Manchu’s darstardly plan to take over the world.

kojak, pagar – since your every comment on here is some uninformed barb at me – I’m not too fussed what your opinion is on the matter. Play the ball not the man. I’m not particularly bothered if you think this is embarrassing or Phillips thinks its obsessive. Both of you want to deflect from the fact her arguments are being utterly discredited.

damon – the point isn’t whether hje is bonkers – the point is about whether he had political goals and motivations.

This is almost amusing. Almost.

Sunny says the sanity of the murderer is irrelevant, Phillips says the politics of the murderer are irrelevant.

Sunny says the thought-process of the murderer were clear and coherent, implying Phillips incited murder. Philips says the murders were a demonstration of a volatile psychological state and personal criticism from Sunny shows his incoherence.

I say both Sunny and Phillips miss the important point – that murder is not any more or less objectionable because of who committed it, against whom, how or why, but it is absolutely objectionable simply because it is murder – and they are only fighting with each other over established facts because they are both self-important, self-indulgent narcissists unhappily dissociated from the real world, just like the murderer, and none is any better than the other.

I say the politics of Sunny and Phillips two-way bitching is enough to tip any number of people into madness and murder.

Really the two of them should get a room – we know they’re both stimulated by exploitational news coverage on continuous loop and we know they both can’t get enough back-biting…

Apparently Hitler had daddy issues too. Maybe Mel is onto something? 🙂

28. douglas clark

Seems to me that Melanie Philips has made a very successful living out of playing the role of Casandra. What with gigs on the Daily Mail and ‘The Moral Maze’ and the occasional appearance on Question Time she has a recognised brand model of fear and loathing on the streets of London.

Personally i find that sort of person quite irritating. When it is pointed out to their public that the are lacking clothes – so to speak – watching them jump up and down protecting their brand image is quite amusing.

I think I have read more mad mel stuff in the past two weeks, then the rest of my life. Its not good, or healthy. As for the troll word, its been used a bit to much during these comments on the whole mad man/conservative terrorist (circle one please) debate. Most of those righties and even a few lefties have been accused of this for mearly disagreeing with us. That aint a Troll, this just someone who dont agree with me.

kojak, pagar – since your every comment on here is some uninformed barb at me – I’m not too fussed what your opinion is on the matter. Play the ball not the man.

Hmm.

Just so you know.

Sunny started this shallow spat with a shameful article trying to score a cheap political point from tragic events and, having got his fish on the hook, he is now trying to play it for all he is worth.

That was playing the ball.

since your every comment on here is some uninformed barb at me – I’m not too fussed what your opinion is on the matter

That wasn’t.

Sunny re comment 26;

Thank you for your message.

As to ‘playing the ball not the man’ this is a bit rich from you right at the moment.
You are the person who has written numerous articles criticising Melanie Phillips.

Prior to the killings in Oslo your writings did focus more on her ideas rather than be a bit of baiting. However since the Oslo killings it was you who wrote / hosted articles criticising her and trying to discredit her + establish a link between her and the killer, thereby making her in some way culpable.

You are the one who started this current spat, not her.it was you made this personal – she probably was blissfully unaware of you until last week, which hardly be said of you (she probay thinks you’re her cyber stalker). So, it is you who played the (wo)man, not me for pointing this out.

Well, both of you have your own blogs and as she is no longer writing for the Spectator she will not have to heed any one telling her this row has become a closed loop. So it could run without end, with you risking turning into a political version of Perez Hilton and her an even more tenacious terrier.

she does herself no favours by saying “The moral depravity of the *Arabs* is finding a grotesque echo in the moral bankruptcy and worse of the British and American ‘liberal’ media…” (my emphasis) – clearly this was meant to cause a stir, and she knows it – instead, it would have been better to say “The moral depravity of the these particular Arabs blah blah etc”.

but where is the context for this, in a tweet: “Israel not Arabs stands for justice and international law. At last it is starting to make the case” (http://twitter.com/MelanieLatest/statuses/95875951233220608)? Unless she means particular Israels (though to my knowledge there is only one) she must mean to say all Arabs here.

She likes courting attention, why are we pleasing her?

33. Shatterface

‘Personally i find that sort of person quite irritating. When it is pointed out to their public that the are lacking clothes – so to speak – watching them jump up and down protecting their brand image is quite amusing’

Bad enough you made me picture her naked without compounding it by having her jump up and down.

This whole ideologue/nutter argument is based on a false dichotomy: neither is individually sufficient cause to explain his actions.

@32 Carl:

she does herself no favours by saying “The moral depravity of the *Arabs* is finding a grotesque echo in the moral bankruptcy and worse of the British and American ‘liberal’ media…” (my emphasis) – clearly this was meant to cause a stir, and she knows it – instead, it would have been better to say “The moral depravity of the these particular Arabs blah blah etc”.

Phillips knew exactly what she was saying, and meant it. She didn’t say “these particular Arabs” because that’s not what she meant. She genuinely believes that all Arabs are depraved and evil. She knows perfectly well that she’s a bigot, and wants everyone else to know it too.

You won’t win this Sunny. Melanie Phillips is an intellectual.

Pagar @ 22

Jesus. Read that again, mate, and be ashamed.

Be ashamed of what? Someone from the anti Islamic, anti Government Right went on a killing spree. This guy was not motivated by Eurovision, Big Brother or the results of ‘X’ factor.

He was motivated by the the fact that he had a problem with the political direction his Country was taking (had already taken) and wanted to kill people to force others of the same ilk to change their ways. Pagar, to be brutually honest, even you said as much last week when you pointed out that (to paraphrase you) he was driven demented by ‘PC gone mad’. If that does not make him outas a Right Winger in the style of the poster ‘Paul Newman’ mold, then what does?

Difficult to see what else there is to say on the matter. Pretty useless to deny something that everyone can see with our own eyes.

37. Elagabalus

I think the distinction that needs to be made between the views of Melanie Phillips and those of Breivik is that it would be safe to say Breivik is a fascist. Say what you like about Mel, but she doesn’t have Breivik’s scary, Romanticised, jingoistic infatuation with Europe’s past. She is very pro-Western, pro-American and pro-Israel and unhappy with immigration, but she is against the UK’s unsustainable levels of immigration, not immigration full stop, which seems to be Breivik’s issue.

My biggest problem of Phillips is her deeply personal hatred of everybody associated the left and I think this is where her attitude coincides with Breivik. It’s awfully Gestapo and hypocritical since she is so quick to complain of ‘bullying’ when challenged. Her unshakeable devotion to neoconservatism is especially hard to believe for somebody who supported the Labour Party against the SDP in the 1983 election (when it would be safe to say Labour were at their most militantly socialist). If I could play amateur psychologist for a second, I think the reason many ex-leftists do a complete 180 degree turn is because they cannot cope with the loss of absolute certainty, because it presupposes thinking for yourself.

I’m beginning to feel bad for you both anyway. The two of you need to kiss and make up. I suggest a night on the tiles.

@ 36:

So would you go up to a Muslim and describe the 9/11 bombers as “your lot”?

XX @ 38

Well, if I did, I would have been trampled in the crush as every Right Winger on the planet rushed to beat me to the punch.

Everyone on the Rght, Phillips has attempted to hang 9/11 around the neck of every Muslim and few has attempted more stridently than Phillips herself.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that ‘everyone’ or even ‘most’ of the Right would have carried out this attack, nor am I suggesting that most would actually condone it either. This attack was carried out by a man who holds the same political views as many of you and that the person who carried this out has explicitly said he has done so to attempt (however futile) to achieve the political aims that you would like to see, too.

For some reason, you people have sought to pretend that Bervik either did not believe his own views or that his views differ from your own. Why?

Why does she get published in the mainstream media?

Melanie Phillips is giving out known falsehoods as usual.

Imagine if a Palestinian had said ‘the moral degeneracy of the Jews’; would she accept it if he later said the meant it in the “context” of criticising the Israeli government, that it was not not an anti-Semitic statement? She would be foaming at the mouth with rage (I mean more so than usual).

Secondly, she says that his political views are irrelvant as he was ‘clinically insane’, but the psychiatrist sent to evaluate him declared that Brevik was perfectly sane. Therefore his world views based on the paranoid ‘Eurabia’ conspiracy fantasy (Phillips/Geller/Spencer/Bat Yeor/ Steyn’s novel new spin on the protocols of the elders of zion), should absolutely be examined as the motive for his crimes.

Thirdly, no one is ‘singling out’ Jeremy Clarkson, Gandhi, Burke, Locke, and George Orwell (despite being cited by Brevik), because they have never claimed that there is a muslim conspiracy to destroy the West from within as Brevik, Phillips etc believe (or at least pretend to).

@ 39:

Yeah, but you still haven’t answered my question.

43. Charlieman

@37. Elagabalus: “If I could play amateur psychologist for a second, I think the reason many ex-leftists do a complete 180 degree turn is because they cannot cope with the loss of absolute certainty, because it presupposes thinking for yourself.”

Yeah, that theory fits in with many conversions (eg Kingsley Amis’s transformation from Communist to reactionary bigot). There are counter examples such as Alfred Sherman (Communist to free marketeer) which are more interesting.

Liberalism isn’t just identification with liberal philosophers but acknowledging uncertainty in life and politics. Its about accepting that circumstances change, that you are not always going to make the right decision and that people who disagree with you on a philosophical point aren’t “wrong”. Liberals also have to be willing to acknowledge when they are acting as utilitarians.

If we accept, for the sake of argument, that risk assessment is learned early in life, it is unsurprising that a conservative lefty teenager becomes a conservative righty in later years (the reverse is also possible, of course). Relearning assessment of risk (ie accepting that we live in an uncertain world) requires subjects to reject parts of themselves. It is a lot more difficult than switching allegiance from, say, Trotsky to Mussolini.

XXX @ 42

What is there to say? Everyone is aware of the motives of the 9/11 terrorists. I have never heard anyone attempt to pretend their motives were anything other than what was stated in various martyrdom videos. Nor has anyone stated that these terrorists where not followers of Islam, either.

What the Right have attempted to do with Berevik character is pretend that what he says is somehow different from what they say, palpable nonsense. His views are exactly compatible with ‘mainstream’ Right Wing opinion. His beliefs are mirrored right across Europe and especially in this Country on Right Wing bloggs and newspapers .

He is, as far as makes no difference, one of your people. Okay, few of ‘your’ people would directly kill in this manner, but you cannot possibly state that he was not politically motivated and not politically motivated by ‘Right Wing ideology’, either.

The fact that you and the rest of your mob are squirming so uncomfortably suggests that you recognise the fact and it does not sit comfortably with the moderate persona the Right have attempted to foster.

Mel accusing someone else of obsession is hilarious in itself. The Oxford English Dictionary could more than adequately define monomania simply by printing her photograph.

Elagabalus re comment 37:
&
Charlieman re comment 43:

I think this will give you a more informed answer to why Melanie Phillips moved away from the left:
http://melaniephillips.com/why-i-am-a-progressive

Although many people here like to think she epitomises all that is wrong with journalists who write about politics; she is a realist and that’s something you cannot say about many on the left (in particular).

#46

“Although many people here like to think she epitomises all that is wrong with journalists who write about politics; she is a realist and that’s something you cannot say about many on the left (in particular).”

She is as far being a realist as you can imagine. She is a hate filled Israel firster. The two categories are not necessarily intertwined, but in her case her extremist views and uncontrollable ethnic chauvinism colours her views on everything. She is the most violently irrational and illogical persons writing in the Daily Mail (among some pretty stiff competition). The weird thing is that she is oblivious to the gap between her rhetoric and reality (she kind of reminds me of Michael Jackson in this respect). She called her last book on liberalism “World Turned Upside Down” (completely without irony), as if she has not been claiming black is white for the last 20 years.

@ 44:

“He is, as far as makes no difference, one of your people.”

I wanted to see whether you apply your ideas of collective guilt consistently, or whether your use of phrases such as “your lot” and “one of your people” was just a result of your paranoid prejudice against right-wingers. So, I asked you whether you would use similar language and reasoning in the case of other well-known killers to try and determine which was the case. Given that you’ve squirmed around and not given a straight answer to my question, I’m suspecting it’s the latter. Oh, and–

“Nor has anyone stated that these terrorists where not followers of Islam, either.”

Plenty of people have claimed that they weren’t “true” Muslims, so that claim is factually inaccurate.

It’s not paranoia when you Breivniks…

50. Shatterface

“If I could play amateur psychologist for a second, I think the reason many ex-leftists do a complete 180 degree turn is because they cannot cope with the loss of absolute certainty, because it presupposes thinking for yourself.”

If you look at it on two axes (left/right and authoritarian/libertarian) you’ll see those who flip tend to do so around one axis but rarely both: authoritarian left to authoritarian right (or vise versa) for instance, or libertarian right to authoritarian right.

51. douglas clark

XXX,

You do realise Melanie Philips is a ‘birther’?

See here:

http://www.spectator.co.uk/melaniephillips/765631/obama-and-the-giant-blogosphere-conspiracy.thtml

You do realise she rather favours Israel?

See here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aOCjtHagaTw

(It starts in a foreign language but Melanie appears and mangles logic and English equally.)

It is a bit sad to see someone advocate a case so eloquently and without challenge.

Douglas – I just watched the first part of the MP video and I thought she made some fair points actually – about many only seeing one ‘narrative’ WRT I/P, and also about Israeli ‘hasbara’ being ineffective. The problem (for me) is that she also only sees one side of the narrative – and I completely agree with Phil (#41) when he says she’d never have tolerated similar remarks about Jews.

XXX raises an interesting point at 41 – about some saying 9/11 terrorists etc aren’t true Muslims. I’d approach such voices and those saying Breivik was offering only a horrific distortion of conservative views in about the same way – sympathetically, because they clearly are horrified by violence and have a natural urge to distance any ideology they are connected with from it – yet with mild reservations, in that there is a link at some level between the ideology and the violence – it doesn’t mean that there is necessarily anything inherently violent about the ideology to say there is some kind of link. People who make *too* much of the links between conservatives (I mean people much less offensive than Geller) and Breivik remind me of ‘Fitna’ – links between an ideology/religion and specific crimes are used to smear everyone in that group.

XXX @ 48

I wanted to see whether you apply your ideas of collective guilt consistently

What collective guilt? What a fucking idiot you must be if you can find some kind of collective guilt in that. Then again, given that you are a Tory, collective guilt is what you peope do, so I suppose you feel that everyone is the same.

paranoid prejudice against right-wingers

My prejudice comes from long bitter experience with you cunts. This actual thread being the epitome of how slippery you people are. You people have consistently denied this terrorist shares huge swathes of your ideology, even though you people would agree with ninety percent of what he has written. He attacked with guns people who he perceived as ‘the enemy’ in a bid to stop the political movement, but you deny any political motivation!!!! A man goes to political rally to kill people at the rally because he disagrees with ideology they represent and that has ‘nothing’ to do with politics?

Yeah fucking right. Just like every other group of people who you never conflate their motives. Like the way you cunts were all too happy to point out that a tiny minority of violent protesters at anti cuts marches were nothing to do with the vast majority of peaceful protesters. The way the Right Wing gasped in shock and horror at the thought that peaceful protester where being punished for the actions of people who they had no connection. Yeah, of course, no-one in the Right Wing would EVER do that?

Now a Right Winger has went on a rampage slaughtered people for the same political beliefs you have, but he is not really a Right Winger and he isn’t motivated by politics?

Plenty of people have claimed that they weren’t “true” Muslims, so that claim is factually inaccurate.

Ah, but I said followers of Islam, not true Muslims. There is a perfectly legitimate to whether or not 9/11 and 7/7 are consistent with the teachings of Islam, no can deny that that these were at least following the faith in most aspects of their life.

“Speaking as a mother”–sorry, I mean, as a rightie–I think that Jim is basically correct in his comments in this thread, and especially in his assessment of the obvious links and hence disingenuous disavowal of responsibility from the anti-jihadi clowns. Right-wing terrorism belongs to the right. But equally, left-wing terrorism belongs to the left. Since terrorism is obviously a tactic better suited to the radical than the reactionary, it is no surprise that the set of left-wing terrorism is immeasurably larger than the set of right-wing terrorism.

If people on the right want to be consistent, then the same logic has to apply in this case as in all the others. And since there are a lot of other cases, we have a lot to lose by abandoning that logic for what are ultimately petty and tribal reasons.

Douglas Clarke re comment 51:

“You do realise Melanie Philips is a ‘birther’?”

Ah, the old accusation – which is as wide as you fancy spanning between people who think Obama was born in a Kenyan hut to those who wonder why he spend millions of his own money fighting law cases to prevent him having to reveal the certificate he released this spring.

The suspension of enquiry by most on the left about this issue beggars belief as it counters the understanding that to give your enemy something to attack you with isn’t the smartest move in politics.

My take on it is when Obama was put forward as a potential Presidental candidate by the Democrats in 2007 a background check revealed he had either skipped a Veterans Day commemoration, written something too ‘left wing’ or failed some coursework – which could possibly be used to counter his smart, clean intellectual image. So they ringfenced all of his background info so as not to leave clues and help anyone to check up on him – including his medical records, school records, college records and his birth certificate. Hence people’s concerns that he was an unknown quantity. I suppose you would call me a ‘Birther’ for thinking his is why he preferred to blow his own money on legal fees rather than leave it to his kids.

Sure, there would have been plenty of people not too happy with the idea of a black President but that’s the lowest denominator and shouldn’t be sufficient reason not to ask why all of this information wasn’t available given that other candidates and previous Presidents had no qualm in revealing this info for inspection.

So it does you less credit by trying to taint Melanie Phillips with the ‘Birther’ label than just dealing with the subject of this article: Sunny’s spat with her implying a causal link between her article about what the DIly Mail called “Nethergate” and the bozo in Oslo who decided to kill many people.

@55

And thus you perpetuate another conspiracy theory. I wonder how many background checks were made vis a vis other US presidents?

George Bush snr’s dear pater did business with the Nazis. JFK’s old man was also rather fond of them, yet not much was made of these facts while they were in office. Yet as soon as a black man becomes president, he’s suspected of cheating his way to the top. You may not call that racism but where I come from, that’s racism by another name.

Vimothy @ 54

Since terrorism is obviously a tactic better suited to the radical than the reactionary, it is no surprise that the set of left-wing terrorism is immeasurably larger than the set of right-wing terrorism.

Hold the bus there, though. The Right rarely need to invoke terrorism because they own the levers power and have perfectly ‘legitimate’ avenues to address their perceived ‘wrongs’.

When a plane is blown out of the sky via a bomb in the hold, for example, people use the term ‘terrorism’. When the Right put a warship in the gulf and shoot down an Iranian airliner, that is called ‘a mistake’. Okay, we could argue about what caused the ‘mistake’ or the ‘terrorism’ but the end result is the same, a planeload of human body parts. No doubt the Right would use the same type of language as the terrorist. This would have happened had our enemies not done this, the loss of innocent lives are regrettable etc, but never allow yourself to think that the Right are less violent toward innocent civilians than the terrorists. You just get to pick the language used to describe it.

When Afghans where killing Russian conscripts, they were described as ‘freedom fighters’.

buddyhell re comment 56:

Oh, stop being such a muppet.

Just as Edgar J Hoover thought there were ‘reds’ under every bed, some people see racists behind every circumstance. Don’t you know ‘the race card’ is one of the laziest ways to try and close any discussion?

You intimate I am racist because I am surprised Obama has spent millions of his own money on lawyers in an attempt to prevent the disclosure of a document that he later released himself (when the threat of Donald Trump, of all people, effectively forced his hand).

‘Birther’ has become a nebulous term which I explained covers a range of people from those who believe he was born outside the USA to those who think it is odd that he, unlike previous Presidents, refuses to release documents ranging from his birth certificate to medical and academic records – and continues to spend a fortune of his own money refusing to release them.

If you don’t think that’s a teeny bit odd then I suggest you are letting sentiment get the better of the normal assessment of a politician, because, as we know they always tell the truth don’t they?

The issue was not did Obama cheat his way to the top (obviously not) but whether he was given a softer ride by a media and opponents wary being accused of racial motivation. 3 years down the line, your readiness to cry racist shows their wariness to have been well placed.

PS: The term ‘Birther’ was raised by someone else with regard to Melanie Phillips.

I despise Philips as much as i despise the left-liberal wank circle you hold court over sunny.

@ 53:

“What collective guilt?”

The sort in evidence when somebody makes blanket statements like “You people/cunts/vermin all do X” based upon ridiculous strawmen.

Also, for all that you rant about how “you people” are trying to distance themselves from Mr. Breivik (I actually agree with you here, not that I’m holding out much hope that you’ll apologise), you’re pretty quick in post # 57 to shift the attention away from left-wing terrorism onto supposed right-wing equivalents. Not very convincingly, either; so, for example, you say–

“When a plane is blown out of the sky via a bomb in the hold, for example, people use the term ‘terrorism’. When the Right put a warship in the gulf and shoot down an Iranian airliner, that is called ‘a mistake’.”

So, are you really claiming that there’s no difference between deliberately targetting civilians and mistaking civilian targets for military ones and shooting at them? Seriously?

@57 Jim,

Are you saying that what happened in Norway would somehow be different if the killer were not a right-winger?

62. Chaise Guevara

@ Kojak

Your theory, which is pure, baseless conjecture, doesn’t even make sense. Obama was fighting against releasing a single document, his long-form birth certificate. Your suggestion that he fought against the release of his birth certificate to prevent the discovery of some fictional information that is not contained in a birth certificate is nonsensical. If such a ‘smoking gun’ did exist, he could have released the birth certificate without in any way increasing the risk of it being discovered.

I admit that it seems strange for him to spend time and money fighting against the release of this document if he had nothing to hide, but the eventual release of said document did not lead to the discovery of any impropriety so I can only conclude that he in fact did have nothing to hide, or at least that there is currently not a scrap of evidence that he did. Perhaps he fought it because he was sick of the never-ending BS being spouted that was distracting from actual issues of real importance. Perhaps he was standing up to the bullying tactics of a group of people whose questions had already been answered but who refused to be satisfied. Perhaps he know that even the document demanded would not satisfy them (it didn’t). Maybe he later capitulated because he realised that he would be bankrupt before these knuckle-dragging morons gave up their inconceivably ludicrous campaign.

As to buddyhell’s accusation of racism, I agree that we shouldn’t assume that. As with everyone who refuses to accept the presented facts and continue to flog this dead horse without a shred of evidence, you obviously have a deeper motive. Perhaps you continue to sling mud because you are a racist, but it is equally likely that you hate not blacks but left-wingers, liberals, intellectuals or even simply people who are quite tall. We cannot tell, but you obviously have an agenda, and slating buddyhell for making a baseless accusation about you is a little hypercritical, considering that you are slinging accusations at Obama for which you have not even the tiniest shred of evidence (unless you would like to pull a failed high school paper or extreme left trope with Obama’s name on it from your ass?).

PS Melanie Phillips is a troll. She writes this bigoted crap not because she actually believes it but because controversy sells, which is actually worse. She should be denied the oxygen of publicity and, if possible, the oxygen of oxygen. Arguing that she is wrong is not only a statement of the obvious but also suggests that we are taking her seriously as a political commentator.

@62 Re: The Obama birth certificate release thingy – I imagine the reason why he didn’t release it straight away is because the President of the United States probably shouldn’t be beholden to a gaggle of harebrained angry twats. When he did finally release it, it had the added effect of making Donald Trump look more of a tosser than he usually does.
A fantastic result all around if you ask me.

Vimothy @ 61

Are you saying that what happened in Norway would somehow be different if the killer were not a right-winger?

Well, to me it wouldn’t but fucking sure the Right would be having a field day if we saw someone who had published Left wing views comparable to this guy’s manifesto committing these type of acts.

Can you imagine the fallout if someone who had been failed by Atos went apeshit, killing dozens of Tories in the process? Can you imagine if the Norway killings been actually been (as first thought) by Muslims? What if green activists bombed a building owned by BP with the same results?

We would never had heard the end of it and not only that, but everyone on the Left would have to explain the actions of any of the above to the finest point. Just like:

When someone throws a fire extinguisher, EVERYONE has thrown that extinguisher.
When someone climbs onto the Cenotaph, EVERYONE had climbed the Cenotaph.
When a Muslim blew himself up on a tube train, EVERY Muslim became a suicide bomber.

Remember the peaceful protest at the Tory cuts agenda? People going on Newsnight etc where not asked about why they opposed the cuts, they were asked why ‘they’ stormed an upmarket shop. No fucking way were the Left going to get off the hook by distancing themselves from that small minority of people. Nope all for one and all for one is the name of the game when the Left can be painted black, eh?

If this anti Islamic, anti Government killer was not motivated by his politics, when how are we able to decipher a ‘political motive’ for throwing a fire extinguisher from a building? Simply because it was a Left wing protest and a guy went to it?

XXX @ 60


So, are you really claiming that there’s no difference between deliberately targetting civilians and mistaking civilian targets for military ones and shooting at them? Seriously?

Sure, why not? If you are in a plane and it blows up, what difference does it make whether it blows up thanks to a rucksack in the hold or a sidewinder missile from another plane? In fact, given the fact that with the latter, the pilots would have attempted to evade the missile I bet the latter was more terrifying.

How do we define ‘terrorism’? The act of violence for political ends? If you have a standing army and the political will to kill innocent people does that you make you less of a terrorist?

A warship thousands of miles from your own coast is not defending your coast, is it? It is not there ‘by mistake’, nor was it armed ‘by mistake’ and it did not fire weapons in the locale of a flight path ‘by mistake’ either. Nothing in that equation was there ‘by mistake’. The people who authorised all of that knew (or should have known) that thousands of civilian lives were at stake.

These weapons where deliberately put in the middle of a civilian area, in the full knowledge that civilians were going to get slaughtered. The people who put them there were willing to kill civilians to achieve a political aim. So what, in any meaningful way would that be different to terrorism?

“Breivi isn`t primarily a politically motivated terrorist. He is a fantasist whose fantasies took a political form, of a sort. Is he a Mandela, a Gerry Adams, a Bin Laden a 7.7. bomber ? Ridiculous !”
How the hell do you know ?
His writings seem pretty political and he is linked with US survivalist philosophy methods and aims.
You are a typical right wing simpleton who puts all terrorists in the same hate filled box. Unfortunately for you they come in all political colours.
Remember Bin laden was trained by the CIA and other right wing nuts like yourself
Kum bay ya, my Lord, kum bay ya;
Kum bay ya, the Lord, kum bay ya;…….
Grow up

pagar and kojak
Why post snide comments constantly at sunny.
If you don’t like him or his site, don’t post.
What do want to see on a leftist site
Sunny to wed Mel.
Sunny is right to explore Brevik’s motivation and political leanings.
If the killer mowed down 90 kids of the progress party I am sure you would be making the same comments. Phillips certainly would be making comments in blaming leftists generally.
Kojak by your postings , you have the sound of a brevik, lots of hate.
Pagar your just a wimp

@ 64:

“Sure, why not?”

Well, the intent’s different, for one thing.

XXX @ 67

Well, the intent’s different, for one thing.

Is it all that different, though? When the Americans shot down the iranian airliner, what were they trying to achieve? At the end of the day the Warship was in the Gulf to attempt to gain American political goals. They put their ship into a position where it may have to defend itself from an attack, even though innocent civilians would be in danger from this huge weapon. Many Americans are quite happy to admit that foreign civilains are a price worth paying to defend an American warship.

Why is that any different from trying to achieve your political aims via targetting civilians? It appears a very false distinction to me.

Chaise Guevara re comment 62:

This just gets sillier by the posting. Now I’m a racist?

I said my take on the ‘Birther’ saga isn’t that Obama is not an American citizen, more likely his background data was hidden from scrutiny in case it revealed something embarrassing that could harm his chance of election.

Imagine, yes it’s only imagine, what Rush Limbaugh or Glenn Beck would have made of a college essay suggesting an end to the embargo of Cuba or something we might agree to be sensible rather than maintaining the status quo. Something like this would be political dynamite – even if he had written something like it at university. Who knows? I don’t, neither do you, however someone would have done a ‘due diligence’ check on a candidate including reading their college essays. Backers don’t fund an election campaign without some certainty.

So my hunch is that Obama probably wrote an essay suggesting like this but the his campaign chose to conceal this was by concealing everything…. medical records, academic records, professional records and the Birth Certificate in order not to give nosey parkers a clue where to look.

He didn’t get Legal Aid to fight all the requests for this information and it has cost him well over a million dollars in legal fees. However much he might like to say “sod off knuckle-draggers” to anyone insisting to see his long-form Birth Certificate I somewhat doubt he would spend his own money fighting them (which he did).

And for that I’m a racist. Wow.

Cylux re comment 63:

Yes he did make Donald Trump look a bit of a twat, but only after he ‘bottled it’ at the prospect of having Trump turn it into a long running issue of trust by using his big mouth, money and access to the media. Trump did in 1 month what the Republicans / Limbaugh etc couldn’t achieve in 3 years. So Trump was happy enough to look like the twat who forced the Commander in Chief’s hand.

Guttmann re comment 66:

“Kojak by your postings , you have the sound of a brevik, lots of hate.”

OK, I get it …… Kojak has an opinion quite different to mine therefore he must be a crazed killer in the making or full of hate.
Where on earth do you get an impression like that from, it’s certainly not from what I have written?

I come here because it offers intelligent (reasonably) discussion about politics. Sunny seems to have a week spot for Melanie Phillips, or should I say what Melanie Phillips represents, and I don’t see anything wrong in pointing that out.

He is young and will probably find his views go out of favour in a few years time. He might even drift away from the left and be accused of being ‘Mad Sunny’. Or maybe before then Central Office will bounce him into a safe seat and we’ll laugh at his attempts to excuse the administration of politics rather than criticise it.

“How do we define ‘terrorism’? The act of violence for political ends?”

No.

A terrorist act is any act which is designed to have the effect, or has the effect of causing a person to be terrorised.

Political terrorism is a whole separate category, and is subject to the terms of political debate.

So state-sanctioned action cannot be compared accurately with the action of independently acting groups or individuals, since it occurs within the framework of established diplomatic networks whereas non-state action does not.

Non-state action is not held politically accountable, it is held criminally accountable, whereas state action is held politically accountable and within that context responsible individuals may also be held criminally accountable.

Attempts at point-scoring make the person doing it look as bad as the person who committed the act in the first place.

Thomas @ 70

Sorry Thomas, that is self serving bullshit.

Your definition of terrorism is particularly meaningless, because any act that ends up with people ‘terrorised’ is terrorism. Ronnie Kray demanding protection money is a heinous crime, but not really terrorism is it?

Hiroshima? Now that WAS terrorism. Fire bombing Dresden? The Blitz? Of course, paint it how you like but designed to terrorise people into a political end.

What about the dropping of napalm on civilians or spraying Agent Orange in Vietnam? What about the bombing of Tripoli in the eighties or the bombing of Baghdad? And countless other incidents over the years?

The fact that these acts were sanctioned by ‘Government’ is completely irrelevant, because the state goal and end result is exactly the same. An attempt to change the political nature of a Country using civilian causalities as a bargaining chip. There are no amount UN resolutions, Bills passed in Senates or dik tats from the Politburo that makes killing for political gain anything (in any meaningful sense) other than the same as flying a hijacked plane into a building.

George W Bush is every bit a ‘terrorist’ as Osma Bin Laden. He may have better trained and equipped murders and he may have had a ‘more legitimate’ cause, but do not pretend his methods were more humane than strapping a bomb onto yourself and exploding it on a bus.

72. douglas clark

Kojak @ 55.

This is an extract from Melanie Philips own article from the Spectator:

First is his childhood background. Last November, his campaign website carried a statement with the headline:

Barack Obama Is Not and Has Never Been a Muslim

followed by

Obama never prayed in a mosque. He has never been a Muslim, was not raised a Muslim, and is a committed Christian.

Obama has also said:

I’ve always been a Christian

and

I’ve never practised Islam.

But none of this is true. As is explored in detail on Daniel Pipes’s website, Obama was enrolled at his primary schools in Indonesia as a Muslim; he attended the mosque during that period; his friends from that time testify that he was a devout Muslim boy. A former teacher at one of these schools, Tine Hahiyary, remembers a young Obama who was quite religious and actively took part in ‘mengaji’ classes which teach how to read the Koran in Arabic. The blogger from Indonesia who reported this commented:

‘Mengagi’ is a word and a term that is accorded the highest value and status in the mindset of fundamentalist societies here in Southeast Asia. To put it quite simply, “mengaji classes” are not something that a non practicing or so-called moderate Muslim family would ever send their child to… The fact that Obama had attended mengaji classes is well known in Indonesia and has left many there wondering just when Obama is going to come out of the closet.

His father was a Muslim, as was his stepfather. His grandfather was a Muslim convert. His wider family appear to have been largely devout Muslims. Yes, we only know about Obama’s early years as a Muslim; and yes, twenty years ago he became a Christian. The issue, however, is why he has been less than candid about his early background and his family. Indeed, he appears to have actively deceived the public about it. That is why the blogosphere is so exercised about it.

You can read the whole thing here:

http://www.spectator.co.uk/melaniephillips/765631/obama-and-the-giant-blogosphere-conspiracy.thtml

“OK , I get it …… Kojak has an opinion quite different to mine therefore he must be a crazed killer in the making or full of hate.
Where on earth do you get an impression like that from, it’s certainly not from what I have written?”
You can, you are very aggressive and why post on a leftist site, you must want the conflict ?
Also you personalize the argument with Sunny. He is the object of your
aggression, a little like Brevik’s hate was personalized at the labour party.

I come here because it offers intelligent (reasonably) discussion about politics.
Delusions of grandeur, not looking good

He is young and will probably find his views go out of favour in a few years time. He might even drift away from the left and be accused of being ‘Mad Sunny’. Or maybe before then Central Office will bounce him into a safe seat and we’ll laugh at his attempts to excuse the administration of politics rather than criticise it.
I agree with you on that point.

Guttmann re comment 73:

If I come across as aggressive – I apologise, I don’t mean to give that impression. I may cut to the chase of make an attempt at parody, but that is to try and lighten the tone.

Why post on a leftist site? The word leftist says it all. People come in all shapes and sizes and likewise their opinions vary across the spectrum; some with left views, some with right and many with opinions gleaned from both sides. I’m one of those and I don’t feel beholden to agree with everything on LibCon or just post complex ‘Here Here / Nasty Tories’ comments.

As far as Sunny goes I have considerable regard for him. He’s the guy who got off his backside to set up this site and give us a forum he blogs round the clock and good luck to him. My views differ with him on a number of subjects:

1. Rod Liddle. Yes he can be uncouth and dares the question the effect of milt-culturalism on the White working class, often in a rude way, and he can a bit of a knob. I think of him as a smart version of the old lady Gordon Brown flagged off days before the last election. To me he represents where the Labour movement came from. Can anyone question his criticisms of the dimmest politician in the house, Dianne Abbott – or would that make them a racist? I thought that the way Sunny steered LibCon in the vanguard of a campaign to prevent Liddle being appointed editor of the Independent was both personal and unwise.
2. Melanie Phillips. Most people here loathe her. Yes she says some silly things from time to time – but nothing to deserve the animosity people on the left show her. Someone earlier called her an ‘Israel Firster’. Sorry, is that a crime? That’s a bit rich coming from the left who have turned ‘Palestinian ‘rights” into a way to make themselves feel better about themselves without having to do anything at all.
Phillips doesn’t think the PA/Hamas/Arab countries are really interested in a peaceful settlement. She think the Palestinians are used by despotic Arab leaders as pawns in the conflict between them and Israel – can anyone disagree with this point?
Sunny started this recent spat with Melanie Phillips by running a number of articles trying to link the killings in Oslo with two of her article which were referenced in the bozo killers sel-fjustification essay. He then went on to claim he was “attacked” by her when she replied politely on her blog. “Yah-Boo” articles are better suited to Telegraph Blogs of The Daily Mail rather than LibCon. In my opinion.
3. Obama. I like American Presidential elections, the twists, turns, sagas and surprises. The media always manage to drag up something about each candidate – it’s like a fusion of News Of The World and politics. I liked what I saw of Obama when he emerged, he was head and shoulders better than the rest of his side or McCain. But I started to notice the coverage of him on the news, in papers etc was completely different to any other candidate. He was given a non critical ride with endless stories about his intelligence, abilities, background, popularity and that he is black etc. Well contrast the month after month of this stuff with the digs and laughs we got at Bush. Prior to the election McCain’s eligibility was questioned so he produced a Birth Certificate to end all questions aboyt his eligibility (born in US hospital in Panama’. For some reason unknown to us all Obama decided not to disclose his long form birth certificate to shut the buggers up and allowed it to develop into an issue – one which helped galvanise the formation of the Tea Party Movement. All at considerable personal financial cost. Yet still the media left this for Limbaugh and Fox to run with instead of asking why is Obama self-harming at considerable cost in front of us. They also ignored his chain smoking (can you not imagine a better role model for a person giving up fags?), the stutters and teleprompters. Jesus – he even had them installed when he came over here. And weren’t we told Bush was the dumb guy who couldn’t think for himself? So, I’ve lost any respect I had for Obama and also for people who accuse me of being a racist for doing so.

Rest assured, I have absolutely no delusions of grandeur.

75. douglas clark

If anyone is still following this thread page 20 of this weeks Private Eye is quite amusing.

As a dane I noticed her referring to Lars Hedegaard (in the daily mail) as a “Swedish thriller writer” and on her own website lists him among conservative/liberal writers.

Lars Hedegaard is Danish, has never written thrillers, his “Danish Free Press Society” gave MP an award a few years back. By his own admission he still uses marxist analysis when writing.

Jim–In that case, should Norway even bother prosecute the murderer? His crimes seem minuscule relative to that of Bush, Blair and their own government.

@71

Jim,
The Krays didn’t just extort protection money, they threatened violence as a means to enforce it – which is an instrument of fear.

Terrorism is designed to create fear. Violence and destruction are a means to that end. The means and the end are not the same.

So the Blitz was therefore of a very different nature to Hiroshima and Dresden: the former was to cause fear, the latter to break the lock caused by fear.

Equally targetted missile strikes to take out weapons factories or assasinate dangerous insurgents are not terrorism, but a response to terrorism and used as a motivation for further terrorism.

You may not like or agree with either, but they cannot be described in similar categories and you are clearly only doing so because you are confused and are attaching the nearest justification you can find whether it is accurate or not. Here it is not.

Sadly your failure to make accurate distinctions is clouding your political judgement too.

Is authority an agent of terror? Not necessarily.

Kojak – take your point about pro-Israel zealots and pro-Palestinian ones being two sides of the same coin – but I don’t see why Melanie Phillips’ comments about Arabs (noted in the OP) should be viewed any less critically than antisemitic remarks from a Palestinian advocate.


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  17. majda72

    Melanie Phillips responds again, by er, calling me obsessed. And now claims Breivik had no political goals http://bit.ly/oKP9TE

  18. Chris Marshall

    Melanie Phillips responds again, by er, calling me obsessed. And now claims Breivik had no political goals http://bit.ly/oKP9TE

  19. andrewscheuber

    The pitifully confused and obsessed @sunny_hundal vs. famously levelheaded rational person Melanie Phillips: http://bit.ly/oKP9TE

  20. Natacha Kennedy

    Don't flatter yourself Melanie Phillips – it's called a political debate http://bit.ly/oKP9TE

  21. Andreas Schlüter

    Melanie Phillips responds again, by er, calling me obsessed. And now claims Breivik had no political goals http://bit.ly/oKP9TE

  22. jude

    Don’t flatter yourself Melanie Phillips – it’s called a political debate | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/jMfEpH1 via @libcon

  23. jude

    Don’t flatter yourself Melanie Phillips – it’s called a political debate | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/jMfEpH1 via @libcon

  24. jude

    Melanie Phillips responds again, by er, calling me obsessed. And now claims Breivik had no political goals http://bit.ly/oKP9TE

  25. jude

    Melanie Phillips responds again, by er, calling me obsessed. And now claims Breivik had no political goals http://bit.ly/oKP9TE

  26. mike brennan

    Melanie Phillips responds again, by er, calling me obsessed. And now claims Breivik had no political goals http://bit.ly/oKP9TE

  27. ben stewart

    Melanie Phillips responds again, by er, calling me obsessed. And now claims Breivik had no political goals http://bit.ly/oKP9TE

  28. Sam Ambreen

    Melanie Phillips responds again, by er, calling me obsessed. And now claims Breivik had no political goals http://bit.ly/oKP9TE

  29. Mehdi Hasan

    Melanie Phillips responds again, by er, calling me obsessed. And now claims Breivik had no political goals http://bit.ly/oKP9TE

  30. David M

    Melanie Phillips responds again, by er, calling me obsessed. And now claims Breivik had no political goals http://bit.ly/oKP9TE

  31. Mancunian Candidate

    Melanie Phillips responds again, by er, calling me obsessed. And now claims Breivik had no political goals http://bit.ly/oKP9TE

  32. sunny hundal

    Melanie Phillips seems to think me taking apart her arguments is being "obsessive". Pathetic http://bit.ly/oKP9TE (from earlier)

  33. John Hirst

    Melanie Phillips seems to think me taking apart her arguments is being "obsessive". Pathetic http://bit.ly/oKP9TE (from earlier)

  34. nobby-Lobby

    Melanie Phillips seems to think me taking apart her arguments is being "obsessive". Pathetic http://bit.ly/oKP9TE (from earlier)

  35. Meral Hussein- Ece

    Melanie Phillips seems to think me taking apart her arguments is being "obsessive". Pathetic http://bit.ly/oKP9TE (from earlier)

  36. Len Arthur

    Melanie Phillips responds again, by er, calling me obsessed. And now claims Breivik had no political goals http://bit.ly/oKP9TE

  37. Natacha Kennedy

    Melanie Phillips seems to think me taking apart her arguments is being "obsessive". Pathetic http://bit.ly/oKP9TE (from earlier)

  38. Natacha Kennedy

    Melanie Phillips responds again, by er, calling me obsessed. And now claims Breivik had no political goals http://bit.ly/oKP9TE

  39. Khalid

    Melanie Phillips seems to think me taking apart her arguments is being "obsessive". Pathetic http://bit.ly/oKP9TE (from earlier)

  40. Get Political Fund » Blog Archive » Don't flatter yourself Melanie Phillips – it's called a political …

    […] Originally posted here: Don't flatter yourself Melanie Phillips – it's called a political … […]

  41. Sam Ambreen

    Melanie Phillips seems to think me taking apart her arguments is being "obsessive". Pathetic http://bit.ly/oKP9TE (from earlier)

  42. Asaf Hussain

    RT @libcon: Don't flatter yourself Melanie Phillips – it's called a political debate http://t.co/6DBPSH5

  43. joe donnelly

    Melanie Phillips seems to think me taking apart her arguments is being "obsessive". Pathetic http://bit.ly/oKP9TE (from earlier)

  44. Julian Thorley

    Melanie Phillips seems to think me taking apart her arguments is being "obsessive". Pathetic http://bit.ly/oKP9TE (from earlier)

  45. In response to Melanie Phillips: The importance of obsessiveness « Red Tape And Picnics

    […] a twitter account). There is an ongoing feud between Sunny Hundal and Melanie Phillips, the former pointing out glaring holes in latter’s recent articles and the latter claiming that the former is ‘obsessive’ for doing so. This is a blog […]

  46. Tim Easton

    Melanie Phillips seems to think me taking apart her arguments is being "obsessive". Pathetic http://bit.ly/oKP9TE (from earlier)

  47. Pascal Jacquemain

    Melanie Phillips seems to think me taking apart her arguments is being "obsessive". Pathetic http://bit.ly/oKP9TE (from earlier)

  48. Dicky Moore

    Don’t flatter yourself Melanie Phillips – it’s called a political debate | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/0hWSrfz via @libcon

  49. Richard Bartholomew

    @MelanieLatest plays the "obsessive" card against arguments by @sunny_hundal: http://t.co/UTXxKA0

  50. sunny hundal

    @MelanieLatest plays the "obsessive" card against arguments by @sunny_hundal: http://t.co/UTXxKA0

  51. Daniel Gray

    @MelanieLatest plays the "obsessive" card against arguments by @sunny_hundal: http://t.co/UTXxKA0

  52. Its Only A Name

    “@Barthsnotes: @MelanieLatest plays the "obsessive" card against arguments by @sunny_hundal: http://t.co/R0gVD7B” Phillips is a mad zealot





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