Tuesday, January 10, 2012
Almost 80 percent of Egyptian Muslims in nine provinces voted for radical Islamist parties in the second round of Egypt’s election. Roughly 5 percent voted for a moderate Islamic party and about 15 percent voted for liberal parties.Me neither.I think I keep a pretty good idea on the news but had no idea that the Islamic Brotherhood were getting around 80% of the vote.That is and ought to be worrying for anybody who approves of democracy and freedom as principles or even who just wants to live in a peaceful world.
That says it all. In the overall vote — that is, including the Christian voters — 70 percent supported radical Islamists, 47 percent (4 million) supported the Muslim Brotherhood (86 of 180 available seats so far; they might win more), and 32 percent were for the Salafists (3.2 million; the Washington Post seriously underestimated their votes).
The liberal (but not overtly anti-Islamist) Wafd won 1 million; the liberal Egyptian Bloc won almost 800,000; and the moderate Islamic Wasat Party got 370,000.
Incidentally, the vice-chairman of the Wafd said in an interview last July that the U.S. government carried out the September 11 attacks and Anne Frank’s diary was a fake. At least he doesn’t like Iran, though he thinks it is right about the Holocaust being phony. And he’s the liberal...
Egyptians and foreign observers now have two choices: face reality or retreat into comfortable fantasies about moderate Islamists. The Christian population cannot afford to engage in fantasies so it is increasingly fleeing, as documented by Lucette Lagnado in a moving, detailed article on Coptic refugees in the United States.
One might wonder what the diplomats; the great and genocidal; government experts; and all those politicians we are expected to trust to know what they are doing think about it.
The answer is Nothing. If you think we are kept ignorant by the government, the government is even more eager to keep itself ignorant.
As the article's author points out the government has specifically banned this article from the websites it uses to "inform" its own "experts" on the grounds that mentioning the victory of a party with at least significant neo-Nazi views is encouraging hate. It seems certain this is merely the tip of the iceberg of censorship going on there.
I presume the BBC and the rest of the "responsible" media have adopted a similar, though perhaps slightly less firm, line.
The practical, as opposed to principled, objection to big brother style censorship is that it prevents even the dictators learning the truth. So long as even those in charge can't find out what is going on they can't do anything to improve things even if they wanted to.
I have limited interest in how Egypt runs itself, just so long as it doesn't attack other countries. However attempts at the adoption of full scale totalitarian fascism in Britain concerns me greatly.
That this is not alone and that the alleged concern about ethnic niceness is being used to suppress free speech & promote fascism widely in Britain is shown by the recent imprisonment of 17 year old Stephen Birrell as part of the equally evil and equally stupid SNP campaign against free speech. He is, by any normal definition of the term, a political prisoner and has thus earned the support of both Rangers and Celtic fan groups.
It takes a particularly high degree of ineptitude, blinkered devotion to censorship and hyhypocrisy to unite both the practitioners of free speech and its alleged victims in opposition to our leader's inept fascism.
The more we accept the idea that the state should curb harmful and offensive language, the further we retreat from Mill’s plea to protect free speech even when we find words distressing. Mill’s suggestion that adults should be free to say whatever they want, short of causing harm, meant something in societies that defined harm in physical rather than psychological terms and that judged humans as capable of making that distinction.
The society we live in today is very different. A newspaper editor, reacting to my objections to the new laws, recently pointed out to me that Mill and Voltaire are long dead.