Sunday, February 18, 2007

Nick's Fans

People who say things like this:
There’s a definite urge—don’t you have it?—to say, “The Muslim community will have to suffer until it gets its house in order.” What sort of suffering? Not letting them travel. Deportation—further down the road. Curtailing of freedoms. Strip-searching people who look like they’re from the Middle East or from Pakistan. . . . Discriminatory stuff, until it hurts the whole community and they start getting tough with their children. . . . They hate us for letting our children have sex and take drugs—well, they’ve got to stop their children killing people.
Also say things like this:
He doesn’t feel he has become more politically right wing with the advancing years, rather that the centre in Britain has drifted to the left. “It’s not really the left though. Nick Cohen’s book said it all.”

He found Cohen’s book What’s Left?, a controversial and scathing critique of modern left-wing incoherence, spoke to his own politics directly: “It’s a sanitary corrective to a lot of woozy undirected sympathy swilling around.”

14 Comments:

Anonymous thomas said...

Amis really is good for a laugh, you have to give him that.

This is sheer brilliance:

"They hate us for letting our children have sex and take drugs—well, they’ve got to stop their children killing people."

It's the equal of GWB's "they hate our freedoms" speech for penetrating analysis.

Nice to see his term "Horrorism" hasn't caught on.

When quasi-Decents like Amis and Pollard talk about being left-wing I really have to shake my head. In what possible universe could they conceivably be regarded as left-wing?

Btw, do you guys still do any Kam(m)pf-watching? It's worth it just to dissect his wonderful prose. It seems to be somewhere between English and German. Perhaps a combination of Dutch and Frisian?

2/18/2007 11:46:00 AM  
Blogger The Couscous Kid said...

Pollard doesn't talk about being left wing, at least, not since 9/11: see the Maida Vale Manifesto. And, no, life is far too short for Kamm-watching.

I think Amis is more than just quasi-Decent, though, isn't he?

2/18/2007 11:49:00 AM  
Anonymous darkhorse said...

That first quote is absurd: take away the political context of Islamic terrorism and you're just left with one community - the Muslims, harassing the rest of us (never mind that the majority of victims of Islamic terrorism are Muslims, of course). And the answer? Harass all Muslims until they persuade the nasty Islamists, "their children" to stop doing it.

It fills me with rage that a supposedly intelligent man can come out with such bullshit - did she interview Jeremy Clarkson, but mistook him for Martin Amis?

2/18/2007 12:00:00 PM  
Anonymous darkhorse - again said...

"For the past two years Amis has been living with his young family in Uruguay — his wife Isabel Fonseca is half-Uruguayan — which he described as “a detachable interlude” in which he came to love the country but could not quite get his tongue around the Spanish language. He said: “My wife speaks the language well and my daughters have become fluent but I couldn’t quite find the time.”""

So he can find the time to rush out and buy bullshit books like Cohen's, but not to attempt to learn the language of the country he has lived in for TWO YEARS and the wife he has been married to for many more. What priorities this guy has!

2/18/2007 12:04:00 PM  
Anonymous thomas said...

Oh, is Amis a full-on Decent? I thought he was just an admiring observer.

When I saw him on Question Time he just struck me as a raving lunatic (and not a very articulate one at that).

Ah, my bad on Pollard. His columns in The Times did seem to be stretching the term left-wing to its limits, even for the Decents.

2/18/2007 12:23:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Amis claims he can teach his students 'time-management' yet failed to learn any Spanish in two years in a Spanish-speaking country with a Spanish-speaking wife and two Spanish-speaking children.

ps does Manchester University have an Islamic Society? Perhaps Marty baby could be invited to explain his remarks to them.

2/18/2007 03:09:00 PM  
Blogger The Couscous Kid said...

http://www.manchesterisoc.com/

2/18/2007 03:12:00 PM  
Blogger ejh said...

As it happens, I myself left England for a Spanish-speaking country (Spain, in fact) eleven months ago. I too have been pretty short of time ever since. I wonder how my Spanish would measure up to that of the great wordsmith and thinker?

2/19/2007 08:27:00 AM  
Anonymous jmc said...

No doubt Amis would be the first to complain about "Muslims" living in the UK who don't "bother" to learn to speak English.

On this evidence, I think the guy is genuinely insane. I hope at the very least he has to attend plenary Equal Opps sessions as part of his new University post.

2/19/2007 08:40:00 AM  
Blogger ejh said...

Incidentally, did the great wordsmith say "sanitary" or did he say "salutary"?

2/19/2007 10:07:00 AM  
Blogger Chardonnay Chap said...

There are at least two absurdities from Amis's own mouth. He sneers at moving to Manchester (why? he was born in Cardiff; he's moved around a bit) - but he doesn't know London well enough to have noticed that bus conductors have been dying out for two decades (and are now extinct).

Second, he keeps mentioning that his favourite authors and influences are Bellow and Nabokov - both of whom were gifted linguists. Nabokov was Russian and lectured in English (and could do so in French, IIRC); Bellow could converse in Yiddish, Hebrew and at least two European languages (though I've forgotten which ones). He mentions Conrad - English was his fourth language (again, IIRC). When these people went abroad, they learned the lingos.

2/19/2007 11:56:00 AM  
Blogger Bruschettaboy said...

I plan to make Oliver Kamm one of the earlier subjects of the forthcoming "Profiles In Decency" series, although I agree with CCK that this would be a more tempting task if I knew for certain it would give me another 100 years on earth.

2/19/2007 02:57:00 PM  
Anonymous Darius Jedburgh said...

I believe that English was Conrad's third language, CC, after Polish and French.

Nostromo is pretty impressive either way.

2/19/2007 03:16:00 PM  
Anonymous rioja kid said...

"Nostromo is pretty impressive either way."

Surely, apart from the ending: are we thinking "we will rule the world for your own good, whether you like it or not" here?

I know it's a bit of a cliche, but Decency reminds me of the International Society for the Suppression of Savage Practices in heart of Darkness.

2/19/2007 07:01:00 PM  

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