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September 23rd 2017 print

John Rigo

Jackboots in Rainbow Hues

I fled communist tyranny to breathe and speak freely, to live without the fear and obligatory debasement of paying lip service to evil. Don't think me dramatic when I say the the Left in general and same-sex marriage bullies in particular have inspired a deeply unsettling sense of deja vu

gay hitlerThere are times in life when at last you can fully recognise a deadly, half-hidden danger. Reading an intensely perceptive analysis helps, and there is a relatively recent one by the Polish philosopher Ryszard Legutko, published in English as The Demon in Democracy: Totalitarian Temptations in Free Societies (brief excerpts featured in Quadrant‘s April 2015 edition). Professor Legutko and I grew up in the same epoch and political environment in the communist tyrannies of Eastern Europe. I escaped and came to Australia as a refugee in 1981, while he became involved with Solidarity in Poland. Now he is a leading member of the European Parliament.  

My point of view differs in part from his in that I have more sympathy for today’s voters, who must swim and struggle in the filthy oceans of propaganda the Left elite churns out. But I find his main thesis strikingly true:

“There are increasingly ominous parallels between the communist tyranny we have known and currently developing versions of ‘liberal democracy’ ”.

Totalitarian tendencies in those who increasingly dominate public life in the West – let’s call them the progressive elitists; Legutko hyphenates them, somewhat ambiguously, as “liberal-democrats” – have been pointed out before. It is the way these forces have behaved in Australia during the same-sex marriage and Safe Schools debates that awakened me so sharply. Don’t think me overly dramatic when I say you can smell the totalitarian threat in the air. Yes, right here in Australia.

Decisively, it is the progressive elitists – on the Left and elsewhere – who control the marriage-fakery and gender-confusion pushes, and who, in effect, are exploiting same-sex attracted people for their own purposes. Powerful enablers do far more harm than noisy activists. Of course, not all advocates of false marriage belong to this camp. Some are honestly misguided. There are puppets and there are puppet masters.

Marriage fakery and gender confusion should be seen as parts of the elitist push. There are other parts, too, in other fields. Going by recent experience, we can expect new forms of inhumanity threatening us year by year, with the aim of destroying traditional foundations and herding us towards the prison camp of progressivist utopia. And we are not talking about “fringe elements”, not at all. The tell-tale is their deviousness as they deny obvious interconnections, all the while crying “Red herring!” and “scare campaign!” even as the consequences of legislating for gay marriage are manifest in other countries. Take the Ontario experience, for example, where grade-one children are taught there are six “genders”, as even the program’s defenders concede.

Let me illustrate a couple of the parallels between the elitist social engineers and the commissars of the country and system I thought I had left behind.

 

The word forgers

Confusing, distorting, reversing and destroying the meanings of words was a major characteristic of communism, as much as the constant threat of state terror. The elitists in Australia also depend on word forgeries. “Homophobe” has become a term for the hysterical condemnation of ordinary people, and it is as manipulative as any communist cant. You may be democratically tolerant and compassionate; as a Christian, for instance, you will try to love all people “as yourself” and accept that all share in the highest possible inherent dignity as children of God. Nothing can more dramatically demonstrate the polar opposite of hating people than the Sermon on the Mount, but today stating as much is of no use. If you still dare to recognize the natural complementarity of man and woman as a fact and a norm, then you are a homophobe and, of course, “a hater“.  This from the the very same people who so loudly and often say they wish only to promote “respect”!

That abuse might well have ben directed at people like my mother, who survived the Nazis and the Communists with her kindness and humanity tested but intact. Her generosity, open mind, unselfishness and self-sacrifice, her deep concern for the true needs of children, would count for nothing. Had she dared to disagree, she would have condemned herself to being vilified with the homophobe label. There are others of similar perspective who come readily to mind: a staunch old friend, an Anzac hero, wonderfully welcoming; Chinese migrant friends with traditions deep and fresh; a generous colleague, living in a joyful African Christian family culture. These are good people with valid objections and reservations about same-sex marriage and Safe Schools-style indoctrination, but they are automatically cast as “enemies” for all their goodness and the charity of their characters. They disagree and that is enough to be declared pariahs by those with the loudest megaphones.

Man-woman marriage is the heritage of humanity. Defending it, in all its implications, against all forgeries, is a basic and unquestionable human right — unlike the suddenly concocted and bogus “right” to same-sex marriage. Did the Anzacs fight and die for an Australia where we must beg exemptions and indulgence to be heard when we defend true marriage? Functioning, viable societies need freedom of speech. In the framework within which the current debate is conducted, a devious attack on this basic democratic freedom is already implicit.

Meanwhile the painted mask is peeling off the faces of shameless politicians, including the person-of-faith-whenever-convenient variety, who keep reassuring us about religious freedom not being under any sort of threat. If that is genuinely the case, why not release the draft legislation that has been privately circulating in Canberra for months? By their words shall ye know them, by the absence of their words as well. Their bland assurances that there is nothing to worry about, nothing to see here,  (“clergy will not be compelled to officiate” and the like) is so narrow and open to amendment as to be worthy of any communist tyrant. After all, those despots silenced and terrorised believers, but still boasted of religious freedom. Weren’t people graciously allowed to go to church?

 

More verbal engineering

And what about equality? The word is dragged into the propaganda slogan of marriage equality as fraudulently as any favourite slogan whose language the communist elite twisted and controlled in order to suit its ends?

For those who have lived through communist state-controlled propaganda drives, there is a stomach-turning sense of déjà vu — the spectre of that same monstrous inequality of power.  Most media, universities, even sporting and professional associations regardless of their members’ wishes, the usual celebrity noise-makers — all pressed into service in support of one side only. The former AFL footballer, professional controversialist and sometime vulgarian Sam Newman nailed it this week on, of all TV programmes, The AFL Footy Show. Watch him take the AFL commissars to task in the video clip below. Notice also how host Eddie McGuire honours the legacy of true apparatchiks by marshalling irrelevance and sophistry in defence of authority.

Top managers of big banks and sundry enterprises, with their obscene and gargantuan incomes, are joined by million-dollar-a-year careerist vice-chancellors, plus rich and devious ABC presenters and the like in posing as the new champions of equality. All the while, most of these are working, directly or indirectly, to entrench their own power and privileges over small businesses and ordinary people. I asked my mother not long before she died:

“Apart from fear, what was the worst infamy you had to endure under communism?”

Her answer:

“The degrading feeling of being taken for a fool by propagandists.”

I, too, tasted the bitterness of ideological servility at workplaces in the old Soviet bloc: going through pitiful pretences to avoid victimization, mass meetings and marches where we had to cheer and celebrate the lies we were fed and knew we were being fed. What next for Australian workplaces now that top managers are regularly issuing their enlightened edicts on “correct” opinions? Will employees be required to celebrate the Emperor’s New Marriage Act, as Hans Christian Andersen might have put it? It is no use hoping Labor will protect workers from such degrading servility. That party has finally and comprehensively betrayed those it claims to represent; just look at its support for green energy policies which have killed jobs and grossly inflated the power bills of its working-class constituency. Labor now works on the theory that the best thing for the proletariat is that it be taught obedience.

Unless we want to surrender ourselves and our children to a nightmarish future where speech is controlled, thoughts regulated and those who deviate brought to book, we must keep fighting in our own spheres and circles, be they parental, cultural, educational, political, professional. Let us first support those who already fighting, then start working with a fresh sense of solidarity on new initiatives, new alliances. On new political parties, too, because they are desperately needed. Labor has become an accomplice in the oppression of young and old, telling its voters that ruinous energy costs are good for them and that the correct response to contentious policies is a group cheer and unquestioning acceptance. The Liberals, after stabbing a good man and decent prime minister, have betrayed the “forgotten people”. Leading politicians of both parties now swell the ranks of the arrogant, progressive elitists. Want an example? Watch Attorney-General George Brandis below defend the burqa — that foul, oppressive, impractical, misogynist sack — as (has he no shame?) a sacred “religious garment”.

We are bullied and confused by multiple machines of propaganda and distraction. Their noise keeps us from understanding the message rising from the “democracy of the dead”, as Chesterton’s resounding phrase puts it, from the tradition of life-giving marriage — the tradition that fathers and mothers should not and never can be interchanged.

But let me return to my theme, as inspired by Ryszard Legutko’s wonderfully perceptive work The Demon in Democracy: Totalitarian Temptations in Free Societies, and address the increasingly ominous parallels between communist tyranny and elitist trickery. I will focus first on schoolchildren.

I began primary school in Budapest in the year following the 1956 anti-communist uprising, a counterrevolution in communist terms. It was a revolution of truth, with many students and others becoming heroes in the fight against the marxist lies of the day. After the movement was crushed and its heroes killed, imprisoned or driven into exile, parents had to warn their children never to utter the word “revolution at school, as we could never know whose parents were regime-friendly informers. If only I could lend readers my eyes of memory to see the panic, even in 10-year-olds, when someone blurted out something ill-advised about the uprising. The fear of consequences was palpable. Today, I think of the Orwellian Safe Schools program and its inevitable future variations and extensions. Must 10-year-olds live under the same stress to use the “correct” and approved term, as once fear obliged me to do?

The fake marriage and Safe Schools propagandists often use suicide prevention as a rationale, even as they ignore far better and more general anti-suicide and anti-bullying programs. And they ignore this: in Eastern Europe communist indoctrination led to masses of schoolchildren losing their bedrock cultural and religious heritage. Multitudes of lives sank into an ethical quagmire, with despair, alcoholism, family breakup and, yes, suicide the result. To save my future children and grandchildren from that same danger was one of the main reasons for escaping to the freedom of the Australia I loved and still do.

Yet now in my Australia, what kinds of distress, including suicide, could eventually flow from the religious confusion and loss of cultural bearings produced by gender-blurring programs and boosted by same-sex marriage? Are those potential suicides and ruined lives somehow less worthy of considering? Naïve question. The whole point of the progressive elitist agenda is to undermine traditional cultural-religious foundations. Why would they start acknowledging the real costs now?

The suicide of logic and compassion

Consider another push occurring right now and the Rainbow Brigade’s emphasis on stopping suicides as a rational for gay marriage becomes even more transparent. Often the very same ideological voices are pushing “voluntary euthanasia”, lately packaged in the stomach-turning trickery of “assisted dying”. Like the commissars, they will have their way with words and meanings! Undoubtedly over time the euthanasia push will see a despicable pressure on the old and sick to agree to end their lives early. Voluntary? Drugging her coffee and getting helpful family members to hold her down for the lethal injection because she was fighting back – that was the way it was done for a poor and confused Dutch woman with dementia, as reported earlier this year. So-called progressives who say they want to decrease the pressure towards suicide among young homosexuals by promoting fake marriages and misleadingly branding Safe Schools an anti-bullying program are often the very same people who do not object to increasing the pressure for the old and disabled to end their inconvenient existence.

Once more I think of my mother, who last year died a natural death last year completely helpless in a nursing home. I remember the last flicker of her warm smile two days before the end. There was infinitely more love and infinitely more dignity in that smile than the progressives, with their conditional  utopias, could ever comprehend.

 

Universities of servility

Straight after retiring from universities in Australia, after 28 years and three institutions, memories of a climate of servility are uppermost in my mind. Places full of enhanced “21st century organic outcomes”, in vice-chancellorspeak.

Earlier, in the 1970s, I spent five years at a Hungarian university where I studied engineering. The fear of communist state terror had by then sunk deep into everyone’s mind. I am thinking of one particular physics lecture with several hundred students in attendance, during which the professor stopped suddenly and asked everyone to remain seated.

A door opened.

Four academics from the institution’s party committee filed in. Without any meaningful introduction, their spokesman started making a speech in support of some Soviet propaganda drive. Very monotonous it was. To such a captive audience those marxist phrases verged on the narcoleptic. Ironically, it was the wooden delivery that excited and maintained interest, as that seemed to suggest the speakers were simply going through the required motions. They didn’t believe. We didn’t believe. But the words had been spoken as required and that was enough. Soon, a vote in support for the Soviets was demanded. All students without exception, including me, promptly raised our hands. The committee filed out. The physics lecture resumed. Clockwork.

And now, with that memory freshly revived, a recent experience in Australia. One day there is a minor media outcry – entirely justified — about slimy, government-sponsored “gender ideology” materials aimed at schoolchildren and produced at the university where, coincidentally, I happened to be working at the time. And what is the official university response? Immediate recourse to  high-minded indignation that critics would dare to call a spade a spade. In due course the university declares it has now officially endorsed “marriage equality”. And now? Let us await the next propaganda crusade … and then the next … and the one after that. Those Hungarian academics, by their conspicuously wooden performance, were moving away from enthusiastic servility. Australian universities have been steadily moving towards complete servility to the progressivist powers.

Sometimes I still turn my mind’s eye back to that Hungarian lecture, trying to recall what I saw straight after, outside the building. The luminous colours of autumn leaves following rain, or the small, hopeful flowers of spring – I cannot now remember the details, just the impression. I knew then that I longed to live in a country where I could feel the fresh air of freedom inside a university building as well as outside.

Today, as I write, I imagine confronting senior Australian academics and administrators with memories of that longing, and of what has become of it. I would say:

“Unlike you, some of us have not come here for stellar salaries or career coups. We came for the fresh winds of free debate, where fear has no place. When I became a refugee, I bet my whole life on that proposition. Can you understand that? If you can grasp what it means to be able to speak without fear, why are you now educating the youth of Australia for lives of doctrinal servility?”

What would they say to that, I wonder? But again, what a naïve thought! Of course they would have plenty to say – through their departments of marketing and propaganda (whatever the official name). They never allow themselves to be short of excuses and obfuscatory explanations for the inexcusable and self-evident.

 

Right side of history?

One of the most hateful aspects of living under marxism was being constantly bombarded by the message that history was on its side – “the forces of progress”, as the apparatchiks liked to say – and the concomitant conclusion that resistance was useless. To make our subjection total, we had to be demoralised, stripped of any and all hope.

Now I hear the same hateful message: anyone daring to oppose gay marriage is on the wrong side of history. Sure, if we bow before the piled-up power and privilege of the elitists, they win. Then we can expect in other fields new inhumanities, fresh deceptions, more servility. And always, because this is the way of the preening Left, new penalties and sanctions on its critics. Inside every leftist wardrobe of assertions and responses, as history has demonstrated time and again, there is a pair of much-loved jackboots.

That is the crux of the matter. We have allowed ourselves to be put to sleep, instead of fighting back. Let us now join the fight and in all the spheres available to us. And let us build new alliances.

The progressive elitists are fond of putting on shows to demonstrate their loudly professed virtue, especially where “racism” can be dragged into it. Yet they keep sneering at the cultural values of people from outside the West, which means most recent migrants to Australia. That superior, sneering attitude of the elitists is as bad as racism, probably worse; it certainly comes with the same stench of arrogance. Of those alliances we need to build and which I mentioned above, well we should build networks of solidarity with migrants against devious assaults on all of us. We are their natural friends and allies — us social conservatives, if you will — not the progressivist hypocrites who, in one breath, can cite their “respect” for multiculturalism and, in the next, demand the adoption of policies and attitudes to make a Confucian or a Muslim blanch.

We have seen the progress of the “progressive forces on the right side of history” fail, their tyranny crash, against all odds. There can be a different kind of progress in decent directions that do not make us trample upon the democracy of the dead.

Yet despite it all I cling to a hope that Australians will defy the elitists, will keep on fighting and do so without hate, but with spirit and courage.

Comments [52]

  1. Doubting Thomas says:

    Bravo. My pious hope is that the repulsive behaviour to date of those proselytising for “Yes” campaign will be as counterproductive as the similarly outrageous campaign of the Democrats in the recent presidential elections in the USA. They are, quite obviously, cut from the same shoddy cloth.

    I see where Commissar Brandis, whose infamously ignorant description of the burkha as a religious garment startled realists everywhere, has doubled down and declared that the attack on Tony Abbott had nothing to do with the “Yes” campaign. With people like that in Cabinet positions, what hope do we have?

    • Ian MacDougall says:

      Oh, I dunno. I intend to vote ‘No’ when this schemozzle of a referendum/plebiscite/checkout or whatever you may call it document turns up, probably in a packet addressed to me which someone will find on the local garbage tip.
      But I salute Brandis. “….Attorney-General George Brandis’ thundering condemnation of Pauline Hanson’s pathetic burqa stunt in the Senate on Thursday afternoon was not just a moment of fine moral and political clarity, it was also bloody common sense.”

      http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/pauline-hanson-burqa-stunt-george-brandis-pulls-off-his-finest-speech-by-calling-out-a-dangerous-fool-20170817-gxyf7f.html

      Brandis has established himself as a genuine liberal-democrat. Well done, George!!!!

      • Jody says:

        What sort of dangerous fool demonizes an average Australian and yet will not put the words muslim or islam with the word terrorism. “Don’t mention the war; I did mention it but I thought I got away with it” (the Australian political system). I’m afraid George is like most morally weak people – sheep, if you like; whenever the heat is on they revert to pc bromides which is equivalent to saying, “hey!! look over there”!!

        • Jody says:

          In short, one man’s “liberal democrat” is another’s useful idiot.

          • Doubting Thomas says:

            Exactly. I was about to ask Ian exactly how he can believe that an intemperate rant, in Parliament or elsewhere, based on factual errors is the mark of “fine moral and political clarity” let alone “bloody common sense”. As someone who has lived for a significant time in a devout Muslim country, I can assure him that if the burkha were the religious garment that Brandis claims it to be, all Muslim women would be wearing it. They aren’t. There are many reasons to disagree with some of Pauline Hanson’s views, but she has shown herself to be a woman of great courage representing her constituents as best she can in a ferociously hostile environment. Ten ‘liberal democrats” of the Brandis stripe do not make a person of the calibre of Pauline Hanson.

      • Bill Martin says:

        I make an exception to my vow of never to respond to a comment by Ian MacDougall. “I salute Brandis” he writes. Saluting Brandis or any other intellectually and ethically challenged Muslim apologist is tantamount to treason through wilfully colluding with the enemy of one’s own western culture. Whether that is motivated by conviction or howling ignorance, it is equally as despicable. There is very good reference to the phenomenon in Rigo’s excellent article.

        • Ian MacDougall says:

          Bill:
          “I don’t agree with a word you say, but I will fight to the death for your right to say it.”
          That sums up liberalism, as practised openly by George Brandis, rather well IMHO. To advocate freedom for Muslims, Calathumpians, Rastafarians and 7th Day Adventists etc, etc, to preach and practice according to their wacky creeds is not to either endorse or preach those same creeds.
          Historically, that epigram has been attributed to Voltaire, though there is some dispute as to the accuracy of that.
          In Australia, thanks to our magnificent and world-leading Constitution, we have absolute freedom of religion. (If you doubt the value of that, can I suggest you take a trip to some benighted country like Pakistan, where such freedom is yet to be achieved, and see the results for yourself.)
          Hanson’s bourker* stunt was just that: a cheap stunt by a politician who got her original publicity through a cheap and gutless attack on the unluckiest of all Australians: the Aborigines.
          George Brandis was simply standing with the Founding Fathers and the Constitution.

          • Ian MacDougall says:

            *Bourker.
            I use this spelling instead of the conventional ‘burqa’ in honour of the Western NSW town of Bourke. Because any Muslim forced by religion, culture, convention or whatever to spend a considerable part of her life hiding underneath one, it must be as hot as bloody Bourke, and with not the slightest breeze either.

  2. StephenD says:

    I too find the Leftist elites deeply sinister. I am astounded, frankly that they have so much support in the community and so little opposition. Perhaps too much damage has already been done, particularly in the schools.

    Australians who value liberty need a bigger and more positive agenda. They are always on the back foot. Always in a position of weakness. The agenda might include the following: discontinuation of government funding for the media, including privatisation of the ABC; privatisation of the State School system; dismantling the AHRC; working out some way to reign in State anti-discrimination laws and regulations; plus necessary economic reforms.

    Public discourse must be rescued from the nihilistic and morally-impoverished language of ‘human rights’. The history of ‘human rights’ is littered with their use to justify oppression of the weak by the strong. They are a very modern invention, traceable perhaps back to the French Revolution, but more accurately in their current form only to the UN Declaration of 1948. They are a con. Their purpose is purely to justify actions taken by those aspiring to world government. ‘Human rights’ define an illusory utopian dream that hides within it the mailed fist of totalitarianism.

    True freedom depends on restoring to public discourse the traditional category of moral duties. It is morality, defined by precepts like the ancient Ten Commandments, that needs to regain its place in political debate. There is such a thing as right and wrong. If we accept the fable that all we need to worry about is ‘human rights’, we have lost the battle for human dignity before we even start.

    • Jimbob says:

      Stephen

      I couldn’t agree with you more! I am a confessing Christian (modern day nut-job according to the popular view) and I actually don’t believe there is anything such as “human rights”. These two words are empty words, devoid of any real meaning. They are used solely as rallying cries by inane, vicious and heartless people who only see humans as (expendable) members of “tribes” that should fight to assert their “rights” (mostly at the expense of the rights of other tribes). This assertion of rights can be done either by the “vote” in a relatively civilised nation like ours or by the “gun” in less civilised and barbaric nations.

      I believe that rather than having “rights”, all human being have “privileges”. It’s actually a privilege to come into being as a living soul rather than never to be; it’s a privilege to live in Australia, rather than say North Korea; it’s a privilege to have enjoyed some freedoms up until this point in time and it’s only now in creeping old age that I realise how great that privilege was as the chanters of “rights” seek to take away my freedoms, make Australia as similar as possible as North Korea and may one day even violently end my hitherto “privileged” life.

      I tend to think (and I’m open to correction by wiser heads) that morality can only be a real thing, when we see ourselves in others (….’there but for the Grace of God go I’…so to speak). Until we see ourselves mirrored in all humanity, rather than as members of “tribes”, there is no potent morality, only the will to power. That will to power finds expression in the desire to assert the “rights” of one tribe over the “rights” of another. As we can see, even in the lead up to the vote on SSM (a most absurd cause – a war over definitions and empty words rather than anything of substance) the thin line between civility and violence, is easily crossed.

      As you have correctly pointed out, the disjoint between the words centred on rights and the behaviour engendered by those words is quite ironic and a mockery of humanity. I tend to think it has always been so (Spartacus in Rome?) but particularly so since the French Revolution and carried on through it’s children and grandchildren, Nihilism, National Socialism and Marxism. The current epidemic of intellectual madness is just a pre-cursor to the natural violent outcomes of fighting (the operative word) for “rights”. It’s the gathering of the war camps before the bloodshed actually begins.

      Which brings me to my final point. What a privilege that this short, mean and brutish life does not go on forever and I don’t have to watch the same mistakes made over an over again by what seems to be a damned humanity.

    • Ben says:

      I agree Stephen D. It’s been a long time coming. Imagine a majority of Catholics being in favor of SSM! A majority! And when I talk to my so called Catholic friends who are around the 50 year mark then cannot for the life of them defend nor define marriage. This is a big reason for why there is no defense for what is happening. On the Catholic side, we are now into generations which have not been taught what is morality. They don’t know what it is.

    • Ian MacDougall says:

      As eloquent an argument for a restoration of medieval society as we are likely to find anywhere. No ‘human rights’ for witches, warlocks, and above all, heretics!

      • Jody says:

        I just wrote this comment on “Spectator Australia” and I think it nicely covers the issues, if I do say so myself!

        The Left doesn’t like the idea of ‘character’ because it implies ‘morality, ethics’ and the like. The Left runs from such notions because they are seen as belonging to conservatives; hard-earned and immutable. And the Left fetischizes change so anything seen as bedrock just has to go. Unlike most conservatives who act from established moral premises the Left likes to make it up as it goes along – just in case change is needed. But they’re in a twilight zone, in reality, because a belief in everything is a belief in nothing. So they must use the agency of the state to do their thinking for them. Read “Dr. Zhivago” to find the stark similarities in thinking between the modern Left and the incipient Soviet project.

        • Ian MacDougall says:

          Jody,
          With all due respect, and I mean that:
          “The Left” as you attack it is an amorphous creature arising out of a swamp of generalisation; a nebulous straw man you set up in order to easily knock down.

          The Left doesn’t like the idea of ‘character’ because it implies ‘morality, ethics’ and the like.

          Who from this ‘Left’ are you actually talking about? George Orwell? Christopher Hitchens?
          Those two remained fast to their principles to the end, unlike many of the apparatchiks they were attacking.
          I have known a fair number of left-inclined people in my time: most in the organisations set up in opposition to the Vietnam War. Some were Melbourne Maoists; in a later age many of them would re-emerge as Carlton supporters. Some were what you might call in each case a Stalin-out-of-power. And many were not.
          And if you have any doubts about the cause of Vietnam that we were all campaigning for, google up Robert McNamara, The Fog of War.

          Here is what I consider to be about the best piece of music from the time. (And no, it’s not by Bach, Handel or Vivaldi)

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7SX-HFcSIoU

          • Jody says:

            I mean the ideological left, not the genuine people who help others and who want to improve the lives of others. The inner urban left, in particular; those people light years away from the people and for whom they long ago abandoned the fight for better pay and conditions. Doctrinaire lefties who infiltrate the institutions – education and the law in particular. Their brand of lenience hasn’t brought us a better society; far from it – a more entitled, angry, aggressive and rights-driven one. And they’re more than willing to use Orwellian language. And they see themselves as above the ordinary people, for whom they have a considerable degree of contempt. They simply “know better”, educated and morally virtuous as they are.

            I’ve read most of the writings of Christopher Hitchens and he actively despised the Left I’ve just described. The turning point came at 9/11, after he’d moved to America, and he saw the full panoply of hatred on ready exhibition from the likes of Vidal, Chomsky and their vicious acolytes. And scratch beneath a ‘compassionate’ Lefty and you’ll soon find envy and resentment of anybody who has really made good – particularly entrepreneurs. (I didn’t listen to your piece of music because I despise complaint rock, and that’s probably what it is.) As I write this I’m listening to Schubert Sonata in A Minor, D845, played by Kempff. A lot more of this and the world would be a far better place.

          • Ian MacDougall says:

            Jody: (I have to fit this one in here, as no room left.)
            “I didn’t listen to your piece of music because I despise complaint rock, and that’s probably what it is.”
            That is certainly what it ain’t. It ain’t complaint. More celebration, IMHO.
            BTW: Hitchens made a useful distinction between the pro-totalitarian left and the anti-totalitarian left: his mob.

      • Jimbob says:

        Ian

        A lack of a Bill of Rights is hardly a return to “medieval society” but while we’re on that particular topic, given the choice of life on Lindisfarne in the 11th century or life in Soviet Siberia in the mid-twentieth century, you can probably guess what I would choose!

        A Bill of Rights is a nonsense which guarantees absolutely nothing and surely it would be better to have people educated to pursue a virtuous life, rather than have cocooned lawyers write up a whole bunch of silly statements that do nothing to get people to treat each other as they would have others treat them….but my gripe with the modern Australian education system for another time and place!

        As for a “Bill of Rights”, Australia has done very well without one since the “white-fella” came to these sunburnt shores. Even the better leftists with a modicum of intelligence get my point. The only one’s screaming for their rights are those who are also displaying banners asking for Churches to be burnt and Christians to be crucified and who show up to meetings to scream obscenities and try and shut down any one with a point of view different to theirs. Another example today of exactly what I was saying above. A bit long winded but here is a quote by Bob Carr, erstwhile state premier and national foreign minister – not man I would normally agree with, but we should give credit where credit is due:

        “How can anyone be opposed?” ask the frustrated enthusiasts who’ve tried to agitate for this issue. Well, to start with, a charter or a bill of rights guarantees nothing.
        Britain abolished slavery in 1772 with a court decision based on the common law. The US, as late as 1857, confirmed slavery was valid, notwithstanding its constitutional Bill of Rights.
        Indeed, America had a Bill of Rights for 150 years before black Americans in the south could vote. And they didn’t get it through the Supreme Court; they got it because black Americans mobilised politically.
        Joseph Stalin’s 1936 constitution was eloquent on rights but he murdered 20 million Soviet citizens.
        I’ve probably made the point but bear in mind some of the least democratic countries have enumerated freedoms in their constitutions: Zimbabwe and Sudan, for instance. (http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/inquirer/bill-of-rights-is-the-wrong-call/news-story/1d2d7e62d97bcb451dcafca284c5c150)

        Same old, same old….damned humanity!

  3. StephenD says:

    An addendum. I have been contributing comments to The Australian online regarding SSM and related issues. The comments are moderated. I have persistently tried to post a comment regarding the children created to satisfy the emotional needs of SS couples. These children are created with the intention of depriving them of the nurture and knowledge of one of their biological parents – either the biological mother or the biological father.

    My comment is that I hope that one day these children will be able to take legal action for damages. It seems reasonable to me. If ever there was a Stolen Generation, these children are it. And some of them have already spoken about their sense of loss. But apparently The Australian finds this idea intolerable, as the moderator has repeatedly deleted my various formulations of this comment.

    I hasten to add that The Australian has given every opportunity to the No side of the debate on SSM to have their say, and has presented a very balanced coverage of the debate. Many comments of mine have appeared online in The Australian, and I am most grateful for the opportunity to present my views in that forum.

    • Ben says:

      I have done the same! The censoring of my comments is now very common. I am very happy to hear someone else is having the same trouble. I feel most of what I put up there is quite reasonable and would be normal banter up to a few years ago. For eg the word sodomy is completely ruled out. Or SSM is “gravely immoral”.

      Every now and again someone does get a hard hitting comment up. Maybe the censurer is asleep. Very interesting under one article where this person wrote that The Australian was little different to the ABC and Fairfax. Certainly on SSM that has been the case.

      The Australian has lost its way. This is frightening because you can see conservative writers, views, being increasingly removed from the MSM.

      The positive side is that there are so many other websites – high quality websites, including this one – offering fantastic articles and insights.

      The only reason I continue to subscribe to The Australian is that I need it for work. Otherwise it is garbage. The opinion writers trot out the same, predictable commentary. In contrast when you come here it is filled with intelligent, refreshing, well-researched and articles. Well done Quadrant!

      • LBLoveday says:

        Even using Copy and Paste of the writer’s words into a comment can result in auto-deleting – does not even make it to the moderator. James Jeffery said he’d look into it, but it seems bizarre that a reporter can use words in the print (and on-line) edition that a commenter cannot.

    • Matt says:

      I last commented in The Australian on the subject of same sex relationships in the late 1980′s. My letter was published but the last sentence was edited by the deletion of the first word, ‘If’, such that it had the effect of inverting the original meaning — undoubtedly deliberately. I later found others who had had a similar experience. I have not bothered to write (or read) comments to The Australian since and have discouraged others from the folly of thinking that it is a worthwhile use of time.

  4. Patrick McCauley says:

    Thank God for the Australians of Polish heritage who still can formulate their first hand memories into such beguiling prose.Thanks Ryszard Legutko and John Rigo for this dire warning … I agree that we are weak against this vicious and sustained attack on free speech.

  5. Clive Dorman says:

    Thank you, John Rigo. This is the most important essay I have read at Quadrant.

  6. LBLoveday says:

    How good it would be if all who objected to receiving texts at all hours telling you “Voting YES is the most powerful step you can take to make marriage equality a reality for all Australians” (there was I thinking it was about SSM) emailed and, or, left a voice mail objecting. They were authorised by:

    Mr Alex Greenwich, MP
    Ground Floor
    21 Oxford Street
    DARLINGHURST NSW 2010
    P(02) 9267 5999
    F(02) 9267 5955
    E [email protected]
    W http://www.alexgreenwich.com.au

    • ianl says:

      These texts are trivial spam. Just delete them, as you do with email junk.

      But: how did Alex Greenwich MP et al aquire the mobile phone numbers list to begin with ? I notice the “sender’s” number is blocked. No reverse phone number lookup to find their address.

      • LBLoveday says:

        Delete is just an extra, and to me meaningless, step and I don’t delete texts, in or out. I am on the No Call list and object to spam, trivial or otherwise, from people to whom I have not given my number. These YES pests claim exemption from the No Call obligation while I get maybe 5 a year from others in total.
        I did not, but have read of people being woken at all hours by the sms (I leave my phone on as I expect any call/text at such hours will be important, not spam, so could have).
        I have read they employed “whiz kids” who set up auto-dialling with texts being sent to computer-generated numbers – eg start with 0418 then send to 0418 000000, 0418 000001…..0418 999999).

        • ianl says:

          > ” … “whiz kids” who set up auto-dialling with texts being sent to computer-generated numbers – eg start with 0418 then send to 0418 000000, 0418 000001…..0418 999999)”

          Ok, makes sense. Objecting to this, then, has absolutely no point. Delete or not, as you wish, but this intrusive form of marketing is here to stay, I expect. We’ve already seen it on landline numbers during election campaigns. Irritating it is, but as I’ve said, trivial.

          • LBLoveday says:

            I’m not up on the law sufficiently to do other than pass on what others have postulated – it’s an unlawful usage of the telephonic system under Federal law. I can only hope so, but even if it is, the chances of Brandis taking action I would put at close to zero.

  7. Matt says:

    For campaign strategy training to fight against tyranny look up The Centre for Applied Nonviolent Action and Strategies (CANVAS). Another good resource is How to Win Campaigns by Chris Rose. Both of those authors are sympathetic to the left, but they have a proven track record and are worth learning from.

  8. Keith Kennelly says:

    Ian

    That salute, was it the Nazi salute and is it accompanied by the words
    Seig Hail?

    • Jody says:

      It’s “sieg” = ‘victory’. “I” before “E” in German sounds the same as “see” – and looks and sounds the same as ‘grieve’ in English. What you wrote was “seig” which is pronounced “sigh-g”. I first got confused when living in Vienna; Meidling Bahnhof I used to say as “Meed-ling” until I realized it was “My-dling”. It’s much the same in English, from the German; the Zeitgeist = zite-gyst.

  9. ArthurB says:

    John: thanks for your excellent article, I agree with what you have said.

    I see the push for SSM in Australia only as a stage in the Left’s campaign to dissolve the bonds which hold our society together, and to reconstruct society so that it conforms to their ideology. If the Left wins this battle, they will move on to the next stage of their campaign.

    The Left is not at all consistent, and is able to hold contradictory views — doublethink, as Orwell described it. A good example is the Left’s reaction to the Muslim invasion of the West, anyone who speaks out against it is labelled as an Islamophobe, and threatened with severe punishment (for “hate speech”). Islam’s attitude to women and homosexuals is ignored.

    Civilisation and culture are fragile entities, and can be destroyed with relative ease, a relevant example is the Muslim conquests of 1400 years ago, which obliterated cultures, such as those of Egypt and the Roman colonies of North Africa, and imposed their second-rate religion on everyone.

    The aspect which most dismays me is the craven attitude of the West’s intellectuals, who refuse to recognise what is happening.

    • ianl says:

      > ” … the West’s intellectuals, who refuse to recognise what is happening”

      Well, actually they refuse to admit it publicly. That it is happening (what I’ve labelled the Disenlightenment) is well recognised, if tacitly.

  10. Keith Kennelly says:

    The words of Ghandi ring in my memory these days.

    ‘You need to be the change you want to see in the world.’

    Fat chance eh Malcolm?

    Ghandi also said, ‘throughout history the ways of love and truth always win’.

    With the foul mouthed headbutt numb bum Yes vote pin up transgender person(?) in Tasmanian as an example, is this the change we want in the world. Is it a coincidences espouses hate and lies?

  11. Keith Kennelly says:

    The managerial classes are not intellectuals. They are mindless idealogues.

  12. IainC of The Ponds says:

    The proportion of latent totalitarian enactors and committed supporters in any country is probably pretty constant. It only takes around 2% of a fanatical hard-core committed cohort to effect state totalitarianism in a much larger uncommitted population. Given the right conditions, 400,000 Australians are more than enough for a jackboot army, secret police and concentration camp guards, and some. This is well under the fraction who vote Green, the most likely reservoir for this scenario (as unlikely as I think it is). The problem is that, although a Soviet or Nazi state is fanciful, there are still many legal or quietly sanctioned outlets for those of a leftfascist bent, making it possible for them to impose their 1% of extremist ideological rigour on the passive 99% more tolerant outlookers, provided that the pushing doesn’t go too far too often, or is seen by most to affect an unrelated minority demographic. The old leftfascist tools of lies, vilification, hypocrisy, hate-speech and exaggeration coupled with relentless pursuit of goals and total support of those in the team, often achieves a goal analogous to those observed under military and state security oversight (“disappearance”, ruination, termination of position, etc), yet under a small l liberal, democratic system. Once can never relax your guard against fascism, even in a benign system such as ours.

    • Jody says:

      I accept all that; the difference today is that the so-called progressive left (which Ross Cameron calls “the fetishization of change”) see themselves at the moral vanguard and wiping their hands of any links to their soviet or Asian communist models. In short, the Left takes the high moral ground when it is apparent that a tectonic plate decades ago in that same high ground left a body count and untold misery. As long as they think they can get away with airbrushing history they’ll continue to do so. Only people like Jordan Peterson, Mark Steyne, Brendan O’Neill and Camille Paglia are prepared to do that calling out.

      Forget Brandis; he’s just a sore on the body politik. And when is he going to go public and ‘fess up’?

  13. Bill Martin says:

    I fervently hope that we will hear a lot more from John Rigo before very long. The depth of his understanding of the issues he addresses and his skilful mastery of the language are awesome.

    It is obvious to those of us with similar background to John’s that people without first hand experience of leftist tyranny are quite incapable of recognising the signs of it creeping upon them. The citizens of western countries which were spared of communist rule are sitting ducks for the “progressive” left, exemplified by the Scandinavian nations, Great Britain, France and the former West Germany (as distinct from the former East Germany). Those are the countries which are blindly marching to their demise under the banner of Commissar Merkel, who learned her craft at the feet on her former communist masters. At the same time Hungary, Poland and other former communist-oppressed countries are in fierce battle against the tyranny of the EU, which they well recognise for what it truly is, i.e identical to that of Soviet communism.

    • ianl says:

      > ” Hungary, Poland and other former communist-oppressed countries are in fierce battle against the tyranny of the EU, which they well recognise for what it truly is, i.e identical to that of Soviet communism”

      Yes. Local populations have some chance of holding local bureaucrats and politicians to account with elections. They have no chance of doing that with the unelected apparatchiks in Brussels.

  14. Ian MacDougall says:

    The fake marriage and Safe Schools propagandists often use suicide prevention as a rationale, even as they ignore far better and more general anti-suicide and anti-bullying programs. And they ignore this: in Eastern Europe communist indoctrination led to masses of schoolchildren losing their bedrock cultural and religious heritage. Multitudes of lives sank into an ethical quagmire, with despair, alcoholism, family breakup and, yes, suicide the result. To save my future children and grandchildren from that same danger was one of the main reasons for escaping to the freedom of the Australia I loved and still do.

    Yet now in my Australia, what kinds of distress, including suicide, could eventually flow from the religious confusion and loss of cultural bearings produced by gender-blurring programs and boosted by same-sex marriage?

    John Rigo:
    In a liberal democracy, anyone has the right to express a political or religious opinion, including of course opinions that you and I might disagree with. You and I are not prevented by any law from disagreeing with those who call for SSM or anything similar. What you are not free to do is stop people from expressing that viewpoint.
    It is actually quite common for people who have grown up in repressive environments to call, once they get the freedom to do so, for repression of those they disagree with.
    I do not support SSM, and for a variety of reasons. But I support the right of people who favour it to campaign publicly for its legalisation

  15. Jody says:

    @Ian MacDougall: loved the Bunyan hymns and what a fabulous voice that singer has!! Hitchens was a supporter of George W. Bush so he had well and truly sloughed off his lefty inclinations. Besides, his own father had been a serving British naval officer and Hitchens always felt ambivalent about his parents’ conservative views and his own religiously-inspired upbringing. The more he grew to love America (he refers to it as “I fell in love”), the more he hated the Left. In the end he directed his anger towards religion itself and he grew to be a bit of a bore on that subject, IMO. Still, he’s very much missed!!

    • Doubting Thomas says:

      Once again, I can only agree. Like you, I have read, and possess, most of Hitchens later writing. To your list above, we should add Thomas Sowell (another Marxist ultimately turned conservative), Lionel Shriver, Joanne Nova, Bettina Arndt, Brendan O’Neill (self-proclaimed Marxist, but a fierce voice of reason), Frank Furedi, and our own Quadrant heroes. When you put your mind to it, it’s surprising how many such sane voices there are. Camille Paglia must drive the virulent LGBTIQUERTY crowd nuts.

      • Jody says:

        Shriver has just taken on a regular gig as a writer for “The Spectator”. Yes, most grown-up people eventually shed their lefty illusions and undergraduate ideologies and join the pragmatic world of very realistic people. Again, look no further than Jordan Peterson and what he has to say. I think you can tell he’s a hero of mine.

    • Ian MacDougall says:

      Jody:

      Those linked hymns have been favourites of mine for yonks.
      Sadly, Maddy Prior of The Carnival Band and also of Steeleye Span is no longer alive, but she was a great performer. I saw her at a Span concert years ago. Very impressive.

  16. Doubting Thomas says:

    I’m profoundly deaf so Jordan Peterson’s stuff on YouTube is hard for me. So I went looking for his books. Oooops! Way beyond my budget. Any advice as to where to find his writings at a reasonable price?

  17. Keith Kennelly says:

    Jody

    The left right thing is from last centurythinking.

    How do you account for the life likes of Brandis, Trumbull, Pyne etc who all hold and support traditional leftie views but who claim to be liberal?

    Mate they all fit into the educated elites of Burnham’s managerial class.

    • Jody says:

      Left and Right are still extremely relevant. Now it’s Alt-Left and Alt-Right or, if you’re German it’s “Far Right”. Anybody who doesn’t agree with the Left is “far” something or other.

      I can see you’ve got issues with the “managerial class”, whereas I don’t care about them at all. They couldn’t be more stupid than the BHP board which is scoring an own goal on criticizing coal. Seems like some shareholder activism is needed to get a new board!