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Aug. 8th, 2011

Looking at photos of Anders Breivik, am I the only person who thinks this is what would have happened if no-one had slept with Julian Assange?

One of the worst things, twinkling away in an entire constellation of worst things, is that he was right—not in his beliefs, but in his calculations. He knew that an atrocity of this magnitude would inevitably harden positions on both sides: those who already believed in democracy and tolerance for other cultures would see these as an even greater necessity, while those who consider them dangerous weaknesses, if not flat-out treachery, would also feel the need to entrench.

You can see this already both in the response of the Norwegian prime minister, with his urgent calls for more openness and democracy—even on the day, before it was clear who was behind the attacks—and in the defensive postures of the professional hate-stirrers, who are currently on the back foot but determined to redouble their efforts: “What Breivik did was probably wrong but…”

If you read this blog it’s a reasonable bet that, whatever you believe, you don’t subscribe to the view that the white race is under siege from the twin evils of Islam and multicultural Marxism. If that’s the case, you may not feel as if you are at war with anyone, but it’s important to know that there are people out there who feel that they are very much already at war with you.

Of course, the tiny proportion of Muslims intent on a violent interpretation of “jihad” also feel that they are very much at war with you. And both sides feel that you should choose between them. Much as you might like both sides to go and thrash out their grievances somewhere distant, preferably under the sea, you are their chosen battlefield. Both the jihadists and the Melanie-Phillipsistas seem intent on recreating the 1389 Battle of Kosovo on your face. I suggest that we invite all these self-styled warriors to keep their fucking apocalypse, and concentrate instead on what’s probably going to be the far harder long-term struggle of maintaining decent living standards as the oil and the credit run out.

In the meantime, I sympathise with the staff at the Norwegian supermarket who, confronted yet again with Breivik’s picture all over the tabloid front pages (Norway has only two tabloids), took the decision to place them in the racks back to front. It’s not about censorship or avoiding difficult debates; they just don’t want to look at him any more.
Dear customers

VG and Dagbladet have a perverse need to publish pictures of “he who shall not be named” on their front pages.

We do not wish to have pictures of him in our workplace.

He will be forgotten, not constantly exposed.

As long as the newspapers choose to cover him, we choose to turn around the newspapers.

Help us keep the store clean of such tabloid crap and keep Dagbladet and VG reversed.

I also sympathise with this guy:

Mate, I know you can’t help your own name, but… it might be time to think about a change. I’m sure there were plenty of Harold Shipmans[1] who felt the need to undergo some quiet personal rebranding in the 2000s.

[1] That’s “Harolds Shipmen” — Hansard ed.


( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 8th, 2011 10:00 am (UTC)
Wait. Are the Goodies looting BHS for guns now? I've totally lost track.
Aug. 8th, 2011 03:01 pm (UTC)
I thought that on looking at the picture, too. I guess Bill Oddie is being kept under wraps for this.
Aug. 8th, 2011 03:54 pm (UTC)
The other Goodies are deeply ashamed of him.
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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