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Saturday, March 19, 2016

Left vs. Right on free speech

There's really no better way to sum up the difference between the mentality of the Left and the Right than to point out that the Left tries to shut down the conservative speakers, and it never even occurs to conservatives to do the same to the Left.

All of these protests aimed at preventing Trump from exercising his right to free speech -- the latest one being in Arizona -- underscore the fact that the Left simply doesn't seem to believe in free speech.

This dichotomy can be observed regularly on college campuses across the country: conservative speakers are denied the right to speak on a regular basis, whereas conservative students never try to shut down Progressive speakers.

What does that say about each side's basic attitudes?

The other striking thing about the leftist protesters is that they seem to feel that they are accomplishing great things by disrupting others' lives. The Arizona protesters parked their cars on a highway and shut down traffic for miles.

What did they think they are accomplishing by doing that? What did the Chicago protesters think they were accomplishing by stopping Trump from speaking there? Did they think that by misbehaving they were winning more people over to their side?

Ray Bradbury wrote Fahrenheit 451 , a novel about the burning of books and the suppression of dissenting ideas in 1953. He was inspired to write it because of the McCarthy era and its dampening effect on free speech. And for a long time, Fahrenheit 451 was an iconic symbol on the liberal landscape.

But….who's trying to suppress dissenting ideas now? Is that why the book is never mentioned anymore?

9 comments:

Terrekain said...

If they thought they could win by engaging in an open discussion, or using organized military tactics, they'd do so. But they know they can't win in that fashion. And the burden of that expectation is the poison of their culture.

It's why these people gravitate towards terrorist tactics.

It's not that a black hoodlum doesn't want a six-figure job doing something honorable and productive? It's that he "knows" he doesn't have a chance. Realizing that his problem is merit - from personal integrity to basic arithmetic to macro-programming multi-ganged CNC - he'll make up excuses about "racism".

On the merits, where the truth hurts - where the truth matters - these people "lose".

That's "why" the hoodlum is "justified" in selling drugs.

And the Muslims are "justified" because "they're oppressed".

And the Anti-Trump rioters are "justified", because "they have to" and "he's Hitler".

And their enablers make excuses for it because, after all, "What else can they do? It's Trump's fault anyway" (what else can they say about their fellow ideologues running rampant)

"It's all I got" (the refrain of a loser)


Craig said: "Ray Bradbury wrote Fahrenheit 451 , a novel about the burning of books and the suppression of dissenting ideas in 1953. He was inspired to write it because of the McCarthy era and its dampening effect on free speech. And for a long time, Fahrenheit 451 was an iconic symbol on the liberal landscape."

Let's put it this way: If Ray Bradbury were an American Patriot and a solid Cold Warrior who fought Soviet Communism and Political Correctness, his books would never have been required reading in public schools across the US.

Of course, the truth is otherwise.

Bradbury libeled the best of his own countrymen with a caricature (a lie) while they were fighting the real life Firemen of the Soviet Union and their liberal cohorts in the United States.

Being condemned in open forum is a part of public discourse. Whenever I hear someone pining about "Free Speech", the only substantive point I hear is "shut up" - a childish pantomime of an argument. "Free Speech" has become a cliche to evoke moral preening.

You can be fired from your job if your employer for whatever reason (he signs the checks).

You can be ostracized by your community if they deem your political positions impromptu (they have that right).

You can (or should) be thrown in jail, exiled or executed for supporting an enemy of the United States, whether you are Alger Hiss or Bowe Bergdahl (All ideas are not equal and some are criminal, treason being one of them).

These are tenets in a healthy American culture - if you want to preserve it.


McCarthy was right.

And there are millions of people of the era more deserving of scorn and condemnation - but I note one in particular who advanced the horror of Communism at home and abroad, a founder of "Political Correctness" which protected Communists then, just as it protects all manner of liberal "Protected classes" now...

...and his name is Ray Bradbury.

Leave McCarthy with his vindication.

Pavonine99 said...

It's been a while since I've read the book, but I have no idea where the above poster got the idea that Bradbury was a founder of Political Correctness. Here's a line from the villian of the novel:
“Coloured people don't like Little Black Sambo. Burn it. White people don't feel good about Uncle Tom's Cabin. Burn it. Someone's written a book on tobacco and cancer of the lungs? The cigarette people are weeping? Burn the book.”

Terrekain said...

Anonymous Pavonine99,

Ray Bradbury was a traitor who championed every communist from Alger Hiss to the Rosenbergs (who were at the center of the 1953 Soviet H-Bomb tumult). I'm not even sure the opening of the Soviet archives sealed their guilt in his mind, nor do I care. The vast majority of American academics boycotted Yeltsin's invitation to inspect one of the greatest troves of source-material in history - and that boycott itself is one of the most revealing episodes in academic history.

Hell, even the Rosenbergs' Soviet handler extolled them for their service to the USSR, while people like Bradbury banished those tidbits as a continuation of "McCarthyism" (they were correct in the label, just not in the way they intended).

Nemesis has not been kind to the author of Fahrenheit 451, however much the memory of Bradbury's crimes has being blotted from the history's pages. After all, in order to absolve American Communists, he had to smear American Patriots. His Firemen and dystopia were intended to represent Middle Americans, the "bourgeoisie" (middle-class, average Americans). He was not lampooning Soviet populaces, propagandists or even machine politics in American inner cities.

Are things becoming clear to you now?

Where do children (now in their middle age today, I guess) get the idea that Bradbury was describing the Soviet utopia he admired for so long? Was his "reinvention" that convincing?

The quote you just read, Pavonine99, looks like it was meant to shame white Americans in favor of Blacks (who were, and remain overwhelmingly and instinctively communist/anti-American).

Granted, the fact that Ray Bradbury is an admirer of the Soviet Union hasn't gotten much notice since the 60s. Instead, I hear about his "reinvention" as some kind of Cold Warrior, as if he were the Soviet propagandist's greatest enemy.

Huh?

Bradbury espoused America (specifically, Americans who saw Communists as their enemy) as the greatest danger to free expression in the Cold War.

I have no idea whether Bradbury's libel has receded in importance in Communist circles. I don't care and don't keep up with it. Like Uncle Tom's Cabin, it is a fiction dressed up as fact, because reality did not conform to the author's ideology. Why would anyone of quality care? Why not access a physical archive or microfiche and learn to immerse yourself in actual history? Even if what you're reading is a lie, at least it's a lie "of the period" rather than a lie written 50 years later.

That is what you should be using to cross check Bradbury's fables.

It's infuriating every time someone "references" a fiction like Fahrenheit 451 for real life events.

Why not start with even low-hanging fruit like Congressional testimony about the Fair Deal and Grand Jury transcripts of the Rosenberg trial? It is no mistake that one of the greatest and peaceful political revolutions and economic expansions in history coincided with the roll back of Communism, the New Deal, a fact which infuriated Bradbury.

Where most of his countrymen saw prosperity and freedom from the yoke of government dependency and propaganda, and Communism, Bradbury felt threatened and "silenced" - because he was a Communist.

Isn't this rather obvious?

This capitalistic-individualistic expansion is the backdrop from which the author of Fahrenheit 451 saw doom and dystopia. Not unlike the whining of today's establishment, mind you.

And if, by some unintended irony, Fahrenheit 451 is now being used against the Political Correctness that people like Bradbury intended to protect Communists, feral Blacks, anti-Americans, etc...

Why is Fahrenheit 451, "an iconic symbol on the liberal landscape", "never mentioned anymore?"

If the answer has a question, both should write themselves.

John Craig said...

Terrekain --
Thank you for all of that, that was a real education. I'd had no idea about any of it, knew nothing of Ray Bradbury other than that he was a writer who'd written a famous book which at one time was regarded as a metaphor about the kind of repressive (conservative) Heartlanders who disapproved of learning.

Of course, the fact that he's no longer mentioned much anymore is a perfect metaphor for the hypocrisy of the Left. (I also hadn't known that the academic establishment had mostly boycotted the owning of the Soviet archives, by the way.)

But anyway, thank you for all that background, next time I hear his name it'll evoke a lot more.

Pavonine99 said...

The point of the quote, as far as I can tell and from what I remember of the context, is that censorship by all races and for all causes is a possibility.
I don't know anything about Bradbury's personal life (I assume what you've said is true, I also assume that you've read the book and that there is evidence for your interpretation of it). I was just thinking in terms of the novel itself, which I read as a protest against anti-intellectualism rather than McCarthyism. One of the major points of the novel is that things don't begin with the censors; the censors are allowed to do what they do because things have gotten to the point where no one cares anyway.
I agree with you that fiction should not be a guidebook or a historical reference.

Terrekain said...

Pavonine99 said: I don't know anything about Bradbury's personal life (I assume what you've said is true, I also assume that you've read the book and that there is evidence for your interpretation of it). I was just thinking in terms of the novel itself, which I read as a protest against anti-intellectualism rather than McCarthyism.

Bradbury protesting for "intellectualism" and later against "McCarthyism", is like Omar Ahmad protesting for "religious freedom" and later against "Islamaphobia".

I don't think those words meant what you to think they meant.

You don't have to look at their personal lives (although that is definitely a legitimate starting point, one that I recommend). But before you indoctrinate generations of American children with a fable, it may be wise to learn about the context in which that "little red book" was written (white book, if I remember correctly).

To make it easier for contemporary people to understand:

Who in their right mind would take Ahmad's entreaties about "Religious Bigotry" at face-value without inspecting his history in Islam and about 9-11?

Who in their right mind would take Bradbury's entreaties about "Newspeak" at face-value without knowing his history in Communism and about the Soviet H-bomb?

"Anti-intellectualism"...now there's a throwback from the 50s and 60s, where any American who didn't unquestioningly, uncritically submit to Communist dogma was labeled an "Anti-intellectual" by self-professed "Intellectuals"....how "intellectual" of them.

[What a crock]

They even wrote a book in the 60s titled "Anti-intellectualism in America" (something like that), all bound in red-white-and-blue colors and telling us how we murdered John F Kennedy because he was an "Intellectual" (I didn't read it, but leftists kept "referencing" it).

Oh wait.

Kennedy was murdered by Oswald, who counted himself as part of the Communist "Intellectual" crowd. And the "Intellectual establishment" was so disconnected with reality, unable to handle the truth, that they built monuments of conspiratorial fantasy blaming on "Anti-Intellectuals" and Right-wingers like me, similar to the "Intellectual" mania of 9-11 conspiracy.

That's right, I murdered John F Kennedy and demolished the Twin towers.

You got me!

Pavonine99 said...

I think you are under the assumption that I am a teacher. You might be gratified to know that I am not. I am also not currently a Bradbury reader; I lost my taste for most allegorical fiction some time ago.
I, like many others, read the novel as more critical of "mass culture" (an oxymoron) and the shallowness of visual media than anything else. The author may or may not have intended more, and while I agree that historical context is important, I would also argue that the text itself should be the starting point.

Dave Moriarty said...

in terms of tough guy I don't have the feeling kids took Trump's lunch money

I do think everyone in he school took Bernie's money.

Cruz thought school was below him as he had already read the books and didn't bother to go so it want an issue for him.
Rubio STILL has kids take his lunch money.
Hillary had thugs take lunch money and gave them a cut but denied it .
Romney bought everybody lunch anyway.


John Craig said...

Dave --
Ha! Very good.

Not sure I agree about Trump, he's always looked a little soft to me, but the others are all perfectly on target.