• Epic Fail,  Labour Party,  Racism

    Food For Thoughtlessness

    Labour shadow cabinet minister Dawn Butler has accused celebrity chef Jamie Oliver of “cultural appropriation” because he’s marketing a Jamaican-themed recipe meal. “Your jerk Rice is not ok. This appropriation from Jamaica needs to stop,” she ranted on Twitter. She was soon joined by her colleague Clive Lewis who claimed Oliver’s product was a continuation of the ‘rape and pillage’ of slavery and a symptom of ‘structural racism’.  Both argued that Oliver somehow stood in the way of black enterprise. This “denies too many black people a fair shot at doing the same thing,” claimed Lewis – which was odd since Butler had copied in Levi Roots into her original…

  • Racism,  Stateside,  Vote 2016

    “Taco trucks on every corner”

    Sounds good to me. Latinos for Trump founder warns that “you're gonna have taco trucks on every corner” https://t.co/lLaB0WY8E7 — BuzzFeed News (@BuzzFeedNews) September 2, 2016 I’m reluctant to call someone a “self-hating Latino” (or a self-hating anything). But what would we think if a Jewish Trump supporter shrugged off the undisguised antisemitism of other Trump supporters by sounding similar warnings about the alleged dangers posed by his fellow Jews?

  • Brexit,  Racism

    Ugly

    These are just some of the incidents that people are reporting. How many others are going unmentioned? I think the decent non-racist Leavers now have a more important task than finding a way out of the EU. Update: Check out this Facebook page. It chronicles acts of compassion and solidarity as well as acts of hatred and vileness.

  • antisemitism,  Racism,  Vote 2016

    Trump and the white nationalists

    I’ll give Donald Trump the benefit of the doubt: when he declared last summer that Mexican immigrants to the US were drug traffickers and rapists, he probably didn’t realize the kind of people with whom that would resonate most deeply. Like white nationalists and neo-Nazis. And I hope no one is shocked to learn that people who regard the “white race” as superior and under threat often do not have the highest regard for Jews. Andrew Anglin of the neo-Nazi Daily Stormer “decried ‘Jewish ethnic activism’ against Trump’s campaign. He doesn’t think there’s an actual Jewish conspiracy against Trump, he added, just that it’s in the nature of the ‘ratlike’…

  • Racism,  Stateside

    Observations on Charleston

    I was away from home (and a reliable Internet connection) last week, and I want to thank Sarah for posting about the awful massacre at the African-American church in Charleston, South Carolina. But I do want to make a few observations of my own. Here is something I posted a couple of days ago in response to some of the comments to Sarah’s post. I stand by it: You know, if your first reaction to this massacre is not outrage at a vicious racist crime, but rather a need to make a point about black-on-black violence (as if black people don’t care about that), then there’s something fucking wrong with…

  • antisemitism,  Racism,  Stateside

    Fringe candidate in Kentucky runs on slogan: “With Jews We Lose”

    I’d be shocked if the antisemitic white supremacist Robert Ransdell– running as a write-in candidate for the US Senate from Kentucky– gets more than half a percent of the vote. What’s more disturbing is that his noxious campaign signs are popping up in northern Kentucky, and he has plans to post hundreds more throughout the state. Unlike in many European countries, there are no laws prohibiting such signs in the US. But if the signs are posted on private property with the owners’ consent, those owners ought to be named and shamed. Of course if the signs have been posted without consent, they can and should be removed. A quick…

  • Book Review,  Racism

    On Slave Reparations: A response to Boonin: 2. Recipients and beneficiaries

    This is the second post in a series of three responding to the arguments made in favour of reparations for slavery by David Boonin in his book, Should Race Matter? Unusual Answers to the Usual Questions. The first post can be seen here. As I commented in my last post, Boonin argues that “the U.S government has a moral obligation to benefit the current generation of African Americans because of the wrongful harms that were inflicted on past generations of Africans and African Americans by the institution of slavery and its aftermath.” One of David Horowitz’s objections to slave reparations is that “Most Living Americans Have No Connection (Direct or Indirect) to…

  • Book Review,  Racism

    On Slave Reparations: A response to Boonin: 1. Causation

    In 2011 Cambridge University Press published philosopher David Boonin’s book, Should Race Matter? Unusual Answers to the Usual Questions. Chapters 2 and 3 of the book deal with the idea that America owes slave reparations to its black population. In 2001 the conservative commentator David Horowitz wrote Ten Reasons Why Reparations for Blacks is a Bad Idea for Blacks – and Racist Too. Horowitz’s points were published as a one page advertisement. In chapter 2 of his book, extending over some 53 pages, Boonin responds to Horowitz critically arguing against each of them.  In chapter 3, at 58 pages in length, Boonin extends Horowitz’s points and comes up with further arguments in…

  • Freedom & Liberty,  Racism

    Racism at the Libertarian Alliance

    On Tuesday evening I attended a talk by Dr. Jan Lester entitled “A Critical Commentary on the Zwolinski 2013 ‘Libertarianism and Liberty’ Essays on libertarianism.org.” It was hosted by the Libertarian Alliance at the Institute of Education in London. In itself it was an interesting talk, although it was largely an argument by one self-declared libertarian that another self-declared libertarian does not have a theory of freedom or liberty. (This could be compared to a lecture by a member of Workers’ Power claiming that the Socialist Workers Party does not understand Marxism.)  A video of the talk can be seen here. Like many political meetings across the political spectrum –…

  • North Korea,  Racism

    North Korea denounces “crossbreed” Obama

    George Galloway, Andrew Murray and Dennis Rodman notwithstanding, the Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea is, as I observed some years ago, the most Nazi-like, openly racist state on the face of the earth. More evidence of the North Korean obsession with racial purity emerged in a recent screed from the regime’s Korean Central News Agency. In terms that might draw assent from Ted Nugent, the KCNA described President Obama as a “crossbreed with unclear blood.” (Texas attorney general Greg Abbott, the Republican candidate for governor, was willing to overlook Nugent’s description of Obama as a “subhuman mongrel” when the rocker/rightwing loony joined him on the campaign trail– which puts him…