The ‘Sneaking Regarders’ and Their Boundless Hypocrisy

Hypocrisy is a normal but irritating aspect of human behaviour. We’re all hypocrites to some extent, but true hypocrites are almost admirable in their chutzpah because, unlike hypocrites who are caught doing what they try to hide, real hypocrites are outraged by vices which they themselves do in public. Their hypocrisy is so blatant that, after a while, nobody notices – it fades into the background like muzak in a shopping centre.

Religious leaders who condemn homosexuality or extra-marital sex are ridiculed when they’re caught enjoying the sins they rail against. People, though, who secretly indulge in behaviour they publicly condemn are not the worst type of hypocrite. A more blatant form is condemning the behaviour of people with whom you disagree while condoning the same behaviour from people who share your ideology. In other words, the worst hypocrisy is not that of human weakness, but deliberate, selective hypocrisy, which is deceptive and misleading, and which is intentionally designed to further a cause. This is especially true in relation to politics, particularly hypocrisy related to human rights. The extraordinary double standards of those who depict the presidency of Donald Trump as a dystopia of human rights abuse, while simultaneously remaining mute or, worse, putting in a good word for China’s torturers, organ harvesters and murderers, and who pose, and are accepted, as defenders of the oppressed, is one of the mysteries of modern culture.

Hypocrisy, though, has mutated to a higher level and grown exponentially since Donald Trump announced his candidacy for the presidency. We would have to return to the Cold War to see hypocrisy on the scale of the last few years, although many people, to be fair, thought it would be impossible to beat the lunatic commentary that surrounded the George W. Bush administration. A lesson of recent history, one I thought would not be forgotten, is that those who make hyperbolic claims about Nazism coming to America should be treated with the contempt they deserve. The sort of people who made those claims should have been banished to the political wilderness as either idiots or ideologues with no credibility.

This has not happened. The usual suspects, who have never seen a left-wing dictator they didn’t adore, are describing the Trump presidency as the end times. To put some perspective on current American politics, Donald Trump is no better or worse than other politician. If he loses the presidency in November, it’ll take me, and most people, 30 seconds to start thinking about pizza, or how modern music lyrics are crap, or how nobody researches what they post on social media. In other words, it won’t be the end of the world.

Trump’s presidency, viewed historically, will be rated both a success and a failure, or, to refine my analogy further, his legacy will be no better or worse than other liberal democratic politicians. He will, though, to his credit, have a better record than many heroes of the left, like Yasser Arafat or Daniel Ortega, who jailed, tortured and murdered their opponents. Or Hugo Chávez who drove the Venezuelan economy to ruin using the same economic principles left wingers criticise liberal democracies for not adopting — and which have left the Venezuelan people impoverished and without the basic necessities of life.

Trump, when his political career ends, will not be morally bankrupt like the many apologists for Castro’s Cuba, who claim that the Caribbean despotism’s medical system is world class, which is simply not true, because the Cuban government does not allow independent verification of its health-care statistics. Nobody with a shred of decency defends fascism by claiming that the trains ran on time, or that Hitler’s record in reducing unemployment mitigates, in moral terms, the wholesale mass slaughter that was the hallmark of Nazism. Castro’s regime murdered tens of thousands, confined homosexuals to concentration camps and imprisoned librarians. Diverting attention from mass murder by extolling the virtues of the Cuban health system is an obscene lie crafted to defend the indefensible. ‘We murdered your family but we do have an excellent oncology department’ is an argument that only the wilfully naïve or the ideologically stupid believe lessens the evils of mass murder. To put this claim in perspective, many countries have better medical care than Cuba and they have not murdered their citizens. Trump will not be morally bankrupt like the defenders of Palestinian terrorism or Islamic fundamentalist terrorism, who believe that murder is a legitimate response to the perceived sins of the liberal democratic West – or who defend people who murder Jews because not every inch of the former Ottoman Empire is Muslim.

And before anyone uses the specious argument that democracies have diplomatic relations with autocratic regimes: there is a difference between realpolitik, where engaging with human-rights-abusing regimes is the lesser of two evils, and being an apologist for regimes that torture and murder political opponents. All of us, in our everyday lives, deal with people who we, in better circumstances, would cross the road to avoid. We engage with these people solely as a necessary evil. But we don’t defend their behaviour as evidence of their superior morality. We don’t hold candle-lit vigils celebrating the life of Yasser Arafat, as did Ireland’s president, Michael D. Higgins upon the death of the leader of the Palestine Liberation Organisation, one of the inventors of modern terrorism.

Hypocrisy, as Rochefoucauld said, is the tribute that vice pays to virtue, which is why so many socialist ideologues use the rhetoric of democracy and human rights to divert attention from their true agenda. It’s easy to draw a false equivalence between the problems that free people face in a democracy and the human rights abuses that are a constituent part of criminal regimes. Obscurantism, though, from apologists for human rights abuses is an intolerable indulgence when people are being tortured and murdered by the partisans of ideologies inimical to human freedom.

Defending criminal regimes which reject democracy makes their advocates complicit in human rights abuses. It’s one of the strengths of liberal democracy that, unlike the criminal regimes and terrorist organisations defended by the morally reprehensible, democracies don’t jail, torture or execute people who criticise democratically elected leaders or their policies. I say this as a reminder that saying ‘grab them by the pussy’ in a private conversation, subsequently leaked, is nowhere near being in the same league as turning a blind eye to murder.

The hypocrisies of Trump’s critics, along with a compendium of their crimes against reason and decency, would fill a bookshelf, perhaps even a library. Every democracy has people who are fellow travellers of tyranny, or ‘sneaking regarders’, to use an Irish term which describes people who admire political violence, especially terrorism, but who are too sheepish or full of guile to state their admiration publicly. It’s about time, though, these people are called out for what they are: apologists for what they pretend to abhor.

I write this knowing that making an argument about the hypocrisy of the virtue-signalling left won’t make a shred of difference. When the next Republican president is elected, the usual dictator-worshipping true believers, who claim without the semblance of a blush that Trump’s presidency is the end of the world, will resort to the same overblown rhetoric about fascism coming to America.

In other words, the business of hypocrisy as usual.

9 thoughts on “The ‘Sneaking Regarders’ and Their Boundless Hypocrisy

  • Edwina says:

    Donald Trump will go down in history as being one of America’s best Presidents, if not the best.
    He will be talked of and revered as Winston Churchill, Maggie Thatcher and Ronald Reagan are today.

  • johanna says:

    You say:

    If he loses the presidency in November, it’ll take me, and most people, 30 seconds to start thinking about pizza, or how modern music lyrics are crap, or how nobody researches what they post on social media. In other words, it won’t be the end of the world.

    What rubbish. There is a life and death struggle underway about American values, foreign policy and economic policy. The stakes are stupendous.

    It is not like the old days, where you chose between candidates a few degrees this way or that. So, choosing pizza was OK.

    Then he says:

    Trump’s presidency, viewed historically, will be rated both a success and a failure, or, to refine my analogy further, his legacy will be no better or worse than other liberal democratic politicians.

    He knows this already.

    Why are you giving this pretentious airhead space?

  • Biggles says:

    Dear Johanna – “Donald Trump is no better or worse than other politician. If he loses the presidency in November, it’ll take me, and most people, 30 seconds to start thinking about pizza…’. I agree with you Johanna, but, thank God, Quadrant is about the only Australian publication which equally allows a platform to fruitcakes and the rational members of society. I am grateful for that, even though, like you, I deplore the drivel spouted by those like Mansfield.

  • ianl says:

    >” … making an argument about the hypocrisy of the virtue-signalling left won’t make a shred of difference …”

    That comment is true, though trite.

    Donald Trump is campaigning against COVID-19, with the entire of the MSM propagandising for the disease. Hypocrisy doesn’t rate here.

  • Warty says:

    I concur with Johanna in the perception of this being a ‘life and death struggle’, though I wouldn’t confine it to America. Hypocrisy is not the issue, rather the tendency of the Cultural Marxists to ditch Truth in its entirety. When right is regarded as wrong, and wrong right, it is not an opportunity for a mere ‘tut tut’.
    It’s ironic, but I was watching a film called Red Sparrow earlier this evening. Though based on a novel published in 2013, this 2018 film seemed almost tailor-made by the Democrat elites in Hollywood, in its resurrection of a Cold War ‘Soviet’ Russia. No doubt mine was simply a gut reaction, seeing Russia-gates under the bed, so to speak; but the reaction was more a visceral distrust of anything coming out of those ‘liberal’ parts of America.
    So, hypocrisy just doesn’t cut it, when blatant dishonesty, coupled with virtue seeking knee-takers of those advocating the pathology of cultural cringe, or demonstrations of insincere guilt over a black-armband view of the past.
    Nor does hypocrisy cut it with regard to the imposition Black Emus on our children in an Alinsky-infiltrated education system. It used to be that historians did their best to faithfully research a particular period, not rewrite it.
    We are in serious trouble despite the immense backbone shown by a Donald Trump, so God help us if he fails to win another term. No pizzas for that scenario.

  • Mr Johnson says:

    Hypocrites are allowed to flourish now more than any other time because the media refuses to hold them to account. They can sit in front of the cameras and relate the most laughable conspiracies or falsehoods, and the media water-carrieres, who share their beliefs, simply remain mute, or even nod in agreement. If there’s one thing Trump has done, it’s exposed the true hypocrites in the media as, at worst being ‘the enemy of the people’, and at least being the enemies of truth.

  • lloveday says:

    An example of how other “esteemed” publications disallow discussion. In response to an article on the renaming of Coon Cheese at the insistence of “activist and businessman Stephen Hagan”, I wrote:
    I suggest readers look up “Stephen Hagan” on Wikipedia and see the title of a film “directed by Rhonda Hagan, produced by Daryl Sparkes and Stephen Hagan”.
    That’s it in full – rejected.
    I guess The Australian does not want readers to know that the film was called “Nigger Lover”, was shown on the ABC, an complaint made (not about the name) and – get this Geoffrey Luck – “Complaint Finding Status: Upheld”

  • IainC says:

    I well remember in the 70s and 80s, the noisy left could not disparage the “right wing dictatorship” of General Pinochet virulently enough. Pinochet was a sadistic, brutal man to be sure, but his main crime de la crime appeared to be the murder of several hundred Marxists over the years of power as part of the overall repression and authoritarian oversight of the poor Chilean masses. Well, articles were thundered out, fists were clenched in strait-arm salutes (the Marxist fascist ones, not the other fascist ones), marches were marched, suspected international sympathizer governments were denounced, and songs and poems written (thanks, Sting).
    And, at the very same time, Marxist governments were racking up not hundreds of deaths, but tens of MILLIONS of deaths – A YEAR, in the case of Mao a decade earlier in the perfect fascist storm of state-sponsored famine to break the peasantry (a lesson learned from Stalin) and various cultural revolutions to break the bourgeoisie. Yet, from these same compassionate ones, not a march, not a fist raised to the sky, not a harsh word, not a song, to be seen or heard.
    All I can say is, thank God that Solzhenitsyn smashed that little coverup with the political expose of the 20th century, The Gulag Archipelago, where even the Master, George Orwell, barely made a dent in the love affair western “intellectuals” (sic) had for Marxist-derived fascism.

  • lloveday says:

    Yes, I saw “”an””, but no edit facility.

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