Hypocrisy is the claim or pretense of holding beliefs, feelings, standards, qualities, opinions, behaviors, virtues, motivations, or other characteristics that one does not actually hold. It is the practice of engaging in the same behavior or activity for which one criticizes another.One of the side effects of the recent Paris events was showing the gap (or a chasm by now) between the supporters of freedom and what Salman Rushdie perceptively called "But Brigade" in a sharper contrast.
The author said there should be no conditions placed on free speech; anyone who does, he referred to as the “but brigade.” "The minute I hear someone say, 'Yes, I believe in free speech, but...' I stop listening," Rushdie said...To present some of the “but brigade” mental shenanigans, I have chosen (arbitrarily, I know) three outstanding representatives of the clan.
1. Noam Chomsky, the Mastermind of the (last) Century.
The distinguished professor of linguistics who considers himself to be an expert on life, the universe and everything, is one of the foremost upholders of absolute and untouchable freedom of speech. Including freedom of speech of Holocaust deniers, with some of whom he seems to be on the best terms.
Our subject appears to be also a master of "do as I say, not as I do" hypocritical variety. How else would you explain this staunch supporter of freedom of speech brown-nosing the chieftains of Hizballah (in the picture above) - people for whom freedom of speech is as alien a concept as pickled pig's knuckles?
Of course, one could mention that the famous fighter against capitalism, the valiant anarcho-syndicalist is not only a wealthy man but also accepts money from the capitalist institutions he so despises and invests money in corporations he reviles.
So this is the man CNN has chosen to pen an article on the subject of hypocrisy (yeah, no kidding): Paris attacks show hypocrisy of West's outrage. And what is the main thrust of the piece? Not only it is a great representation of the "but brigade" stance, it uses for the "but" part the NATO "missile attack on Serbian state television headquarters" in 1999. Just a reminder: Chomsky, while knowing practically nothing about the case, remains an unrepentant denier of Bosnian Genocide. This is the man that complains about Western hypocrisy.
The principle of using the "but" logic was brilliantly debunked by Howard Jacobson in his article Try ‘and’ instead of ‘but’ and.... I would say that the headline itself conveys very well the Jacobson's main point, but do not deny yourself another example of his prose. Especially since Chomsky is debunked there as well.
2. Norman Finkelstein, "world renowned political science professor"
The "world renowned" part will remain on the conscience of the interviewer and his editor, of course. If the Fink is world renown, it is not exactly because of his prowess in the dense forest of political science. His "fame" is stemming from his preoccupation with the so called "Holocaust industry" - the phenomenon of Jews profiting from Holocaust - that he himself "christened", described and continues to profit from as long as he is able to. If this is not a prime example of hypocrisy, show me a better one.
Not to be outdone by prof Chomsky (his hero), prof Finkelstein has also made the pilgrimage to Lebanon (see the picture above), to prove his loyalty to the values of Mr Nasrallah. But no, he is no hypocrite, of course.
And, returning back to the interview, prof Finkelstein was much cruder than prof Chomsky. He considers the cartoons by Charlie Hebdo to be "political pornography no different than Der Stürmer".
I have no sympathy for [the staff of Charlie Hebdo]. Should they have been killed? Of course not. But of course, Streicher shouldn’t have been hung. I don’t hear that from many people," said Finkelstein.Smashing, that, but then prof Finkelstein is in a much tougher (financially speaking) situation than prof Chomsky. He has to work for his daily bread and, being found not exactly suitable for a job in US (I wonder why, after all even professors that share his political views haven't lend a hand to their stricken comrade, as the comrade himself testifies), he teaches something in Turkey (Sakarya University, whatever it means). So he must make himself likeable to his hosts, I assume. But no, no hypocrisy in that, not at all...
And of course, he found his "but" point too, not to worry:
The characterization by the French of Muslims as being barbaric is hypocritical considering the killings of thousands of people during France’s colonial occupation of Algeria.Why didn't he add the burning of Jeanne d'Arc and Napoleonic wars will remain forever unknown, I'm afraid, but this is the nature of Poli Sci professors.
3. Hon. George Galloway, MP: tyrants brown-nosed, straw men slayed.
Being a politician, on top of his other gainful employments, Mr Galloway easily tops the list as far as his range of activities is concerned. Many a tyrant on this planet experienced the restorative effects of our subject's tongue on his posterior. Many a radio/TV transmitter blushed of shame, being forced to transmit the insufferable crapola spewing from this character's mouth.
This time was no exception. The bounder has outdone even the previous subject, prof Finkelstein, in his rabid speech:
George Galloway boldly declared “Je ne suis pas Charlie Hebdo” during a damning address at a freedom of speech rally in Bradford on Saturday.As you can see, this time Hon. George Galloway has succeeded to perform an ass-licking maneuver on a whole religion - no mean trick, I have to add. But then, years and years of practice lead to this shameful exhibition.
The Respect MP told a crowd of protestors gathered outside Bradford City Hall that the French government should be ashamed of themselves for standing by the “racist, Islamophobic, hypocritical rag” in the wake of the attacks in Paris that killed 17 people last week.
These are not cartoons, these are not depictions of the Prophet, these are pornographic, obscene insults to the Prophet and by extension, 1.7billion human beings on this earth and there are limits.
There are limits. There limits to free speech and free expression especially in France.
To conclude: the three protagonists of this post come from different backgrounds. All three are deeply damaged by some irreversible process or event in their lives, but this is a matter for a psychiatrist. It is easy, though, to find common symptoms: each one has visited Lebanon and served in his own lowly way this murderous terrorist outfit; each one is a liar and a hypocrite; all three hate Israel; etc. Given time and opportunity, I guess we'll see the three gracing the fledgling Islamic State capital, explaining to the world how just and awesome it is and how it should be understood in its true glory.
And we should fully expect each one of them explaining to us how hypocritical it is to object.
P.S. For the sake of fairness: Israel has its own set of blasphemy laws, preserving some remnants of a British rule.
In Israel, blasphemy is covered by Articles 170 and 173 of the penal code.Fortunately, the 173.1 and 173.2 are not enforced too eagerly, if at all. The fact is that the latest edition of Charlie Hebdo could be obtained quite easily and freely here - albeit only as an Internet order.
Insult to religion
170. If a person destroys, damages or desecrates a place of worship or any object which is held sacred by a group of persons, with the intention of reviling their religion, or in the knowledge that they are liable to deem that act an insult to their religion, then the one is liable to three years imprisonment.
Injury to religious sentiment
173. If a person does any of the following, then the one is liable to one year imprisonment:
(1) One publishes a publication that is liable to crudely offend the religious faith or sentiment of others;
(2) One voices in a public place and in the hearing of another person any word or sound that is liable to crudely offend the religious faith or sentiment of others.