Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Bury. Head. Sand.

Doctor, I have a problem. I keep hallucinating. No, not all the time; it happens mainly when I read articles in the British media. I bring up a news site to see what's happening in the U.K. and I go mental. These bizarre fantasies take the stage. And they're so real looking, as though they're actual news stores.

No, I'm not on drugs, Doctor. Other than the ones you've prescribed.

You want an example? Right then, how about this:

The Government has drawn up a controversial phrasebook on the language of terrorism and is insisting civil servants no longer blame fanatical extremism on Islam, for fear of upsetting the Muslim community.

The new counter-terrorism guidelines suggest that phrases such as "Islamic terrorist" and "jihadi fundamentalism" are too inflammatory and imply that all Muslims explicitly are responsible for extremism.


You see what I mean? I've got to be barking mad to hallucinate such an absurdity. I know that Britain stands for common sense and civility, courage -- you know, Winston Churchill, "Britain can take it" in the middle of the Blitz. But I also seemed to see this:

It also claims that the use of concepts like "the struggle for values" or "a battle of ideas" plays into the hands of those who wish to frame the issue in terms of a clash of civilisations between Islam and the West. A more productive approach is to stress the idea of shared values, it suggests. ... The guidelines make up part of a £45 million plan to tackle violent extremism in local communities and win the "hearts and minds" of Muslims.
"Hearts and minds." I've heard that somewhere before. Am I confusing past and present?


Why are you giving me a blank prescription form? Oh, excellent symbolism, got it. You want me to just ignore my disordered senses. Let my mind go empty, like I'm in one of those transcontinental meditation ashrooms or whatever you call 'em.

Or skip the U.K. news and focus on the American presidential campaign? Wait till I tell you what I'm hallucinating about that ...


No comments: