Sunday, May 30, 2010

A bit of Gove Watching...

The things you learn via Twitter, part whatever. Charlotte Higgins (chief arts writer of the Guardian):

Michael Gove at #Hay speaks from audience and asks Niall Ferguson to help build a new history curriculum for UK schools.

See, almost on topic. Gove, semi-Decent. Niall Ferguson, partner of Ayaan Hirsi Ali, idol of Nick Cohen etc.

If there's one thing worse than a curriculum being set by a committee, it's one set by an ideologue.

'I warned you about this' comments may be deleted. :-p


Anonymous organic cheeseboard said...

this is something i find pretty odd about gove - he tries to be both didactic in terms of education yet also completely open market. you can't have it both ways - you can't say that anyone can start a school then also try to stop certain religiouis groups running them.

this is a set-up, though, since iirc this was already discussed pre-election and it's totally symbolic - as if Ferguson will actually do anything.

5/30/2010 04:19:00 PM  
Anonymous organic cheeseboard said...

am 'looking forward' to Decent response to the Israeli treatment of the Gaza fleet of ships... I wonder what Brett Lock has to say, he's usually so keen on killing pirates.

5/31/2010 09:56:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm sure Denis MacShane will be in full solidarity in demanding that a multinational naval task force proceed at once to the Eastern Mediterranean in order to suppress any further piracy and indeed to destroy pirate vessels and aircraft whereever they may find shelter.

"From the halls of Moctezuma, to the shores of Tripoli..."

5/31/2010 11:38:00 AM  
Anonymous Sonic said...

On HP the Saucer people are refusing to talk about today's massacre, key story is (I kid you not) the lack of Trotskyist support for Allied policy in 1941.

Must not have got the line yet.

5/31/2010 11:42:00 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Could be worse. Could be "Mrs Thatcher's favourite historian" and speech-writer Norman Stone, who was expelled, sorry, retired from Oxford in 1997because of his extreme thirst.

Niall Ferguson was one of Stone's students.

5/31/2010 04:56:00 PM  
Blogger cian said...

HP have moved onto the massacre. Apparently it was the flotilla's fault. I guess the instructions arrived after all.

Apparently members of the flotilla were violent because they attacked with chairs armed special forces boarders. Its an argument, but one I suspect the non crazy will find pretty contemptible.

5/31/2010 05:22:00 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Hey! Less cynicism on here please!!

The Israelis claim they found 'axes and knives' and 'two guns' on the ship on which they shot 15 (FIFTEEN) people dead.

I, for one, look forward to DA & NC giving us an entirely rational explanation for this featuring "Islamofascists".

5/31/2010 05:29:00 PM  
Blogger Chardonnay Chap said...

To be fair, DA has referred to it as a massacre:

Anyway, not looking to get involved in a long whataboutery. The massacre is bad enough, but it amazes how Is-Pal looms larger than all else.

5/31/2010 05:45:00 PM  
Anonymous bubby said...

To be fair, DA has referred to it as a massacre

By engaging in a classic piece of whataboutery? Its basically the same argument that Brett Lock always trots out 'Why does Israel get held to higher standards than other states?'. Now Brett at least has the excuse that he is a moron who doesn't have a clue about news values and how the media functions. DA isn't a moron and does understand the dynamics of news coverage which makes his apologism perhaps even more odious.

5/31/2010 06:02:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Off topic, but how about 'Hand in Gove' for a Gove-watch title? (Hmmm...sounds a bit rude tho', as does this potentially apt line from the Smiths: 'The sun shine out of our behinds'...)


PS: Re. Anyway, not looking to get involved in a long whataboutery. The massacre is bad enough, but it amazes how Is-Pal looms larger than all else. - [Adopts 'HAL' voice] I'm sorry, Dave, but chopped-up prostitutes and outed LibDem ministers was last week. No-one else seems to be shooting up convoys at the moment; if anyone is, we'll RT you.

5/31/2010 06:47:00 PM  
Blogger Matthew said...

A bit weird as Aaro mentioned (indeed condemned, albeit in whataboutery mode) this but didn't mention the massacre in Pakistan, as far as I can see.

5/31/2010 07:08:00 PM  
Blogger Chardonnay Chap said...

He had mentioned it earlier, and I'd replied to him (he doesn't follow me, so no idea if he read it) that that massacre was carried out (allegedly, but plausibly) by the Pakistan Taliban which we are fighting already. Everyone agrees that they are basically bad guys. What can we do about them? What we're doing already, until Denis MacShane wants us to leave of course. (OK, that's disingenuous; I don't believe we're doing any good. But it's not like there are Taliban apologists in the press or we have diplomatic relations with them.)

5/31/2010 07:19:00 PM  
Blogger AndyB said...

Well, having dipped my toes into the HP Sauce, it seems that they have posted a 'neutral' 'open thread' on the massacre and use it to relay IDF produced videos.

And then argue to that the flotilla was driven across the sea on waves of anti-semitism, before topping the post with a new 'Hey, Muslims Bad!' post.

5/31/2010 07:24:00 PM  
Blogger Sangiovese Fellow said...

"The Israelis claim they found 'axes and knives' and 'two guns' on the ship on which they shot 15 (FIFTEEN) people dead.

I, for one, look forward to DA & NC giving us an entirely rational explanation for this featuring "Islamofascists"."

Come now, surely the explanation is obvious, is it not? The flotilla had weapons of mass destruction but managed to move them to Syria just before the Israeli commandos boarded the ships. The weapons were and are so well hidden that they are wholly invisible to the eyes of all but Decents, neocons and Israeli hawks, meaning that only a huge "Shock and Awe" military invasion of Syria will suffice to find them. You know it makes sense! Indeed, this glorious and wholly sensible prospect would be imminent right now if only the Americans hadn't been fooled into electing a limp-wristed, bruschetta-munching relativist appeaser from the academic-media complex...

5/31/2010 07:27:00 PM  
Blogger Chardonnay Chap said...

If you go to the recent (around 8 pm) comments on that Harry's Place thread, it gets really ugly. Eg Latek @ 8 pm quoting another comment, "Israel attack and murder a group which contained a Holocaust Survivor, best selling authors, Nobel Laureates, politicians, charity workers, TV personalities," replied, "Who gives a fuck about luvvies on board?" And three minutes laters wrote, "Shocka! Relations between antisemitic Turkey and Israel may suffer. No big loss." To some people (and I hope he's not representative) no one not Israeli matters, and everyone hates them anyway.

This is crazy.

The only hope is that Israeli lawyers have petitioned the High Court, charging that Israel had violated the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea by capturing the boats in international waters. I hope they win.

5/31/2010 07:31:00 PM  
Blogger Matthew said...


"He had mentioned it earlier"

I meant DA didn't mention the Pakistan matter at the time, but did condemn the Israel action, so perhaps he could just ask himself why he ignores one and talks about the other?

5/31/2010 09:25:00 PM  
Blogger cian said...

That kind of ugliness isn't going to convince anyone who doesn't want to be convinced.

5/31/2010 10:33:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I liked the one on HP source challenging them to explain them self's out of this one. The answer? -human rights violating Turkey cant tell them how to behave, classic.

6/01/2010 12:51:00 AM  
Blogger Chardonnay Chap said...

DA's response isn't mine, but he clearly accepts that it's a huge clusterfuck, he calls it a massacre, he hasn't bought the Israeli line that the people on the ship tried to 'kidnap' a commando, he hasn't denied that the shooting of civilians is murder and so on.

He's doing a hell of a lot better than many commentators. Given that he's retweeting blatantly racist attacks on him by 'Zionism' watch, he's actually being very undefensive. GIve the guy a break.

6/01/2010 05:46:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Also he did tweet the Ahmadi massacre at the time. I read it.

6/01/2010 06:19:00 AM  
Blogger Sangiovese Fellow said...

Jesting aside, I agree that Aaro is handling this one quite well so far. On the other hand if you take a look at the latest blog post - "The truth about the Turkish terror convoy" - from Melanie Phillips, whose path to wingnuttery our Nick sometimes seems inclined to follow, you might see my earlier sarcasm on this thread about reality-challenged Decents as being not quite so far off the mark.

6/01/2010 07:16:00 AM  
Blogger Chardonnay Chap said...

Well, I skimmed some of Mad Mel's post yesterday, and I agree, but I don't her as a Decent; she's out on her own.

6/01/2010 07:33:00 AM  
Blogger Matthew said...

I'm not criticising Aaro's response to the Israeli story(I think we are at cross purposes here), I'm just saying that if he is wondering out loud (and in fact a little more than that, it's an accusation of sorts) why people get worked up about Israel killing people but not terrorists in Pakistan he should mention his own reasons for mentioning the former much more than the latter. Now Anon corrects me that there was no mention, and he is right as I lazily searched for Pakistan, but searching again I see there was this:

"I would like to know how any of this - - remotely fits into usual 'they've been driven to it by the West and poverty'"

This isn't actually a condemnation, but I don't believe for one moment he condemns Israel but not the Pakistan terrorists.

6/01/2010 10:35:00 AM  
Blogger Captain Cabernet said...

No rash of cricket updates at Normblog yet, but a bit of Eagleton-bashing and some Arthurian romance.

6/01/2010 10:46:00 AM  
Blogger Chardonnay Chap said...

Matthew, I wasn't saying that you were criticising Aaro; I intended what I wrote more as a sort of pre-emptive strike against anyone who might come along later and do so.

6/01/2010 11:33:00 AM  

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