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July 03, 2021

A Few Current Examples of Robert Conquest's Three Laws of Politics

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7 ways 'The Hobbit' films didn't ruin all of Middle Earth's goodness

In his Thursday Morning Report, J.J. Sefton picked up a discouraging piece on the Tolkien Society going woke.

The society asked for papers about "diversity," and the presenters did not disappoint.

Leading off the discussion on Saturday will be Cordeliah Logsdon with "Gondor in Transition: A Brief Introduction to Transgender Realities in The Lord of the Rings." Yes, the first speaker will discuss "transgender realities" in The Lord of the Rings. Tolkien, an orthodox Roman Catholic, would have been extremely surprised to discover that his work included "transgender realities." Deconstructionists claim that a text has no meaning except what a reader decides, so LGBT activists can read all sorts of sexual mumbo jumbo into The Lord of the Rings.

Other speakers will address "The Invisible Other: Tolkien's Dwarf-Women and the 'Feminine Lack,'" "Projecting Indian Myths, Culture and History onto Tolkien's Worlds," and "The Lossoth: Indigeneity, Identity, and Antiracism." . . .

. . along with the discussion of "transgender realities," the seminar involves not one, not two, but three papers with "queer" in the title. . .

Deconstructionists claiming that "a text has no meaning except what a reader decides" is one of the reasons universities have become destructive institutions today.

Not everyone is happy with the takeover of the Tolkien Society by today's hard left. A rival event has been scheduled.

The Tolkien Society, a society of dedicated fans of the Lord of the Rings franchise and the works of J.R.R. Tolkien has a new competitor, The Society of Tolkien after they announced an ultra woke diversity seminar on July 3rd. . .

Many in the society felt alienated by the new push to impose the woke and social justice agendas and decided to push back by scheduling an alternative event on the same day. The alternative event focuses on a scholarly approach to Tolkien's work. The schedule includes events such as "Solving Gollum's Riddles: An Ode to Tolkien and Old English," "Mapping Middle-earth," and "Tolkien is Timeless, Tinseltown is Trite," according to the Daily Wire.

The new Society of Tolkien said it will not accept lectures on "concepts not included in Tolkien's writing." Keith Casey, the founder of the Society of Tolkien, describes himself as a software developer, entrepreneur, startup founder, parent, and a voracious reader of all things and confirmed to the Daily Wire that he started the event to push back against the "nonsense" of the Tolkien Society.

"For an organization 'devoted to the study and promotion of the life and works of the author and academic J.R.R. Tolkien' - I question how their own bizarre viewpoint, which reads like fan fiction, took center stage," Casey told the conservative news website. "Tolkien's works are wonderful and should be cherished and understood as he wrote them instead of twisted to fit current social fads."

This contrast reminded someone I know only through social media of Robert Conquest's Second Law of Politics. Here are all three:

1. Everyone is conservative about what he knows best.

2. Any organization not explicitly right-wing sooner or later becomes left-wing.

3. The simplest way to explain the behavior of any bureaucratic organization is to assume that it is controlled by a cabal of its enemies.

The post linked above includes some discussion, starting here:


John Derbyshire added this:

Of the Second Law, Conquest gave the Church of England and Amnesty International as examples. Of the Third, he noted that a bureaucracy sometimes actually is controlled by a secret cabal of its enemies -- e.g. the postwar British secret service.

(And that may have been before Black Liberation Theology and Critical Race Theory took possession of the Church of England.)

John Moore thinks the third law is almost right; it should read "assume that it is controlled by a cabal of the enemies of the stated purpose of that bureaucracy."

From the comments:

Conquest probably adapted those from communism (his scholarly field). Leftists said that any socialist or labor organization would eventually be taken over by hardened communists, and it's reasonable to assume that any communist is not a communist when it comes to his own possessions.

Conquest's Third Law

3. The simplest way to explain the behavior of any bureaucratic organization is to assume that it is controlled by a cabal of its enemies.

Oh, my. I can think of some remarkable examples of the Third Law just from this week. How about you? Any examples of this law come to mind?

Conquest's Second Law

2. Any organization not explicitly right-wing sooner or later becomes left-wing.

An observation from a young poet:

Have a look at the mottos of some of our most esteemed institutions of higher learning:

Harvard - "Truth"

Yale - "Light and truth"

Oxford - "The Lord is my Light"

Columbia - "In Thy light shall we see light"

Colgate - "For God and for Truth"

Princeton - "Under God's power she flourishes"

University of California - "Let there be light"

California Institute of Technology - "The truth shall make you free"

University of Chicago - "Let knowledge grow from more to more; and so be human life enriched"

Ohio University - "Religion, Learning, Civility; Above All, Virtue"

University of Michigan - "Arts, Science, Truth"

University of Colorado - "Let your light shine"

Loyola Marymount University - "For the greater glory of God. -- Direct us by thy light."

Stanford University - "The wind of freedom blows"

Syracuse University - "Knowledge crowns those who seek her"

University of Pittsburgh - "Truth and Virtue"

West Virginia University - "Add to your faith virtue and to virtue knowledge"

University of Toronto - "As a Tree Through the Ages"

University of Washington - "Let there be light"

It would seem that most Universities of the West were founded on the principles of learning, virtue, and seeking a higher truth by the light that illuminates us all, building upon what has been discovered by those that came before.

Do these Universities live up to their mottos? Perhaps a better question: if they were to reformulate their mottos based on what they've become in the present day, what would they convey?

"For Social Justice"

"There is no truth"

"Dismantle, destruct, destroy"

"Criticize, collectivize, conquer"

"Virtue is not a virtue"

"Above all, activism"

"Gender, Sexuality, Race"

"Science... if it fits the narrative"

"Let there be contention"

"My truth shall make me free"

With the overwhelming majority of our young people being indoctrinated with these anti-values for decades, is it any wonder society is mired in mistruth, mistrust, and moral relativism?

Conquest's First Law

1. Everyone is conservative about what he knows best.

Critical Race Theory survived for decades in universities but it ran into problems in its first encounter with the public.

. . . in CRT we are not talking about some hidden theory; we are talking about a school of thought which was openly heralded within American academia and has now been forced upon the wider world. Yet just at the point that it has infiltrated the public sphere, Goldberg and others claim that our understanding of CRT has become confused -- as if an ideology that is wilfully obscurantist ought, in fact, to be straightforward and agreed upon.

In the Washington Post and elsewhere, this debate has come to define American politics in recent weeks. Most prominently, Joy Reid of MSNBC has taken to claiming that CRT is not being taught in schools, is not what its critics say that it is and is both too complex for people to understand and also an exceptionally obvious demand for social justice.

What prompted such a desperate defence? Well, American parents have finally woken up to what is being taught to their children. . .

But now, just at the moment that the American public are starting to push back, supporters of CRT are stepping away from their creation, pretending that concerned citizens have misunderstood it, or are railing at a mirage.

The aforementioned Reid, for instance, recently interviewed a leading CRT scholar -- indeed the person who reportedly coined the term -- Kimberle Crenshaw, who has described the backlash against CRT as an effort "to reverse the racial reckoning unlike anything we've seen in our lifetime".

When they started coming after the kids . . . .

Perhaps we should encourage some conservatism with regard to the Independence Day Weekend as well. There is a July 3rd Celebration in the City of Orange, California. Did you expect that? In California?

There will be a patriotic music program, food trucks offering food and beverages for purchase, children's activities, and more, all beginning at 4:00 p.m. "A musical performance by Orange Community Master Chorale will begin at 8:00 p.m. The fireworks spectacular will begin after the performance at approximately 8:45 p.m."

Some quotes to consider:

"You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness. You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism." - Erma Bombeck
"Years ago, a group of good, wise, brave, God-fearing men stood up to claim and defend the human right for independence. Those men are now dead. Their work is not. If good, wise, brave, God-fearing men fail to stand up in their stead, that independence will cease to exist." - Richelle E. Goodrich
"Liberty is a constant battle between government; who would limit it, people; who would concede it, and patriots; who would defend it." - Samuel R. Young Jr.
"To celebrate the Fourth of July meant something definite in those days." - Carol Ryrie Brink, Caddie Woodlawn's Family
"From every mountain side Let Freedom ring." - Samuel F. Smith

Education, 1965

Remembering our History. More important now than ever.

Music

American aspirations, 1966.

A tradition here. The Stars and Stripes Forever. Don't give up.

Hope you have a great Independence Day Weekend!

This is the Thread before the Gardening Thread

Serving your mid-day open thread needs

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posted by K.T. at 11:12 AM

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