Monday, May 21, 2007

Hughes and Hugh: Dumb and Dumber

Once again, Hugh is simultaneously perspicacious and grievously myopic—about the same thing.

In this comment he made about Karen Hughes, Under Secretary of Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs—particularly concerning an address of hers for the Ambassadorial Washington group of the Organization of Isamic Conference—Hugh is of course eminently correct to brand Hughes as “dumb”. But, alas, he proves himself even dumber when he fails to note that a Hughes would have little or no sociopolitical traction, let alone sociopolitical influence, were there not a dominant and mainstream sociopolitical culture of Political Correctness surrounding her on all sides, from which, moreover, she has evidently derived all her dumb shibboleths which she repeats in her address.

Hugh writes:

“Her speech should be introduced into the Congressional Record as an example of all that is wrong with the Bush Administration's understanding of Islam and of what that Administration still insists on calling ‘the war on terror’.”


“There are dumb people running things. Dumb people no doubt have their place. But not, at this time, high up in the American government.”


“I just re-read Karen Hughes' speech. God is she dumb.”

Hugh makes the mistake of delimiting the problem to the Beltway, as elsewhere he delimits the problem to Academe, or to the Mainstream Media—i.e., to that sinister bugagoo, the “Elites”—when it is obviously a much wider and more socially amorphous phenomenon. And Hugh makes the mistake of reducing the problem to one of “dumbness”, which obscures, or rather ignores, the systemic and sociological dimensions of this most formidable problem we face that is hindering our collective Western ability to take rational action against the problem of Islam.

Here are excerpts from the address by Karen Hughes, from which it is easy to cherry-pick her abysmally dumb—yet, alas, all-too common—axioms, seeing as it is, like life, mostly a bowl of cherries.

“We at the State Department have worked hard over the last year to strengthen our relations and interaction with the OIC.”

“We have a shared interest in making sure that the mainstream voice—which is the dominant voice—is heard from Muslim communities.”

“And I believe you and I share a common mission—creating a more constructive dialogue between your countries and mine—a friendly, frank and honest dialogue that is vital if we hope to achieve a better and more peaceful world.”

“I know His Excellency Secretary General Ihsanoglu and the OIC have made promoting East-West dialogue a top priority—and I hope this Washington working group will be an important step in furthering that goal.”

“The world is hungry for progress toward peace—and that is, after all, a core message of all the world's great religions—‘Salaam’.”

“The vast majority of people in our world, Muslim, Christian, Jewish, Hindu, Buddhist or those of no faith at all—want to live secure lives of opportunity—this is not a goal owned by any country, but a shared human goal...” [Comment by me: The Islamic system of Sharia law by which human rights are systematically and officially abused would also, to a Muslim, entail “living secure lives of opportunity”—and therefore, this is a meaninglessly value-neutral phrase.]

“...we live in a world where misunderstanding and mistrust are spreading, often being fanned by extremists, their murderous acts and their rhetoric of hate. One of our great shared challenges is to isolate and marginalize these extremists, and nurture our common interests and values by finding ways to bridge differences...”

“Together we must address the misperception fostered by extremists that there is a ‘clash of the civilizations,’ that the West is somehow in conflict with Islam, because I know—and you know—that simply isn’t true. Islam, as a major world religion, is part of the West and an important part of America.”

“One of the things I’ve worked to do is to empower their voices and demonstrate respect for Muslim culture and contributions both here and abroad. In today’s diverse, global and multi-cultural world, people need to be more respectful of each others and of all faiths.”

“Many important Muslim voices have made that argument for many years—even centuries—as I was reminded last night at a celebration sponsored by the Embassy of Turkey honoring the 800th anniversary of the birthday of the great Sufi poet, Rumi, whose message was one of love, acceptance and tolerance. ”

1 comment:

tanstaafl said...

Never did read that Qur'an, did you Erich?