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we in the West

What determines whether someone belongs to The West? Are you in The West? If the people who claim to speak for The West don't speak for you, are you in?

Can the last politician to go out the revolving door please turn the lights off?

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Jul 17th, 2007 at 11:38:24 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Is this going to turn into one of those philosophical "how can you prove this is a chair?" debates?  

I'm going on geography (what people refer to as the "Western Hemisphere"), religion (Judeo-Christian tradition), tradition of classical liberal values, shared cultural traditions, etc. etc.

"Pretending that you already know the answer when you don't is not actually very helpful." ~Migeru.

by poemless on Tue Jul 17th, 2007 at 11:46:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
No. I'm asking you
  1. who speaks for The West?
  2. do those people speak for you?
  3. does that mean you're in The West?

Also, what happens when more than one different group claims to speak for The West? To pick up Colman's and your WWII reference, Franco claimed that Spain was the "Spiritual Reserve of the West". Not that anyone else in The West, especially the Leaders of the Free World, was listening to him, but he represents another tradition of murderous thugs claiming to represent The West.

I'm going on geography (what people refer to as the "Western Hemisphere"), religion (Judeo-Christian tradition), tradition of classical liberal values, shared cultural traditions, etc. etc.

Who speaks for The Western Hemisphere? Who speaks for Judeo-Christian Tradition? Who speaks for Classical Liberals?

Can the last politician to go out the revolving door please turn the lights off?

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Jul 17th, 2007 at 11:52:46 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I do.  :)

"Pretending that you already know the answer when you don't is not actually very helpful." ~Migeru.
by poemless on Tue Jul 17th, 2007 at 11:53:58 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Migeru:
Who speaks for Judeo-Christian Tradition?

Apparently Mark Rutte (I think...) and Geert Wilders.

DutchNews.nl

Right condemns minister's Islam comments

16-07-2007

Right-wing MPs have condemned remarks made by integration minister Ella Vogelaar in an interview with the Trouw newspaper on Saturday in which she says the Netherlands will become a country with 'Jewish-Christian-Islamic traditions.'

In the interview, the minister points to the arrival centuries ago of Jews in the Netherlands and says that the country has been formed by Jewish-Christian traditions. 'That's how it will be with Islam,' she told Trouw.

She also said the Netherlands will have to learn to live with fundamentalism. 'There are ideas within Protestantism and Catholicism which make me raise my eyebrows,' she said. 'The SGP's standpoints on homosexuality and women are not mine.'

The fundamentalist SGP, which has two MPs, believes homosexuality is a sin and that women should not have the right to vote.

Her own Labour (PvdA) party has yet to comment, with the exception of MP Samira Bouchibti who called the remarks 'fantastic'.

But the anti-immigration party (PVV) and the Liberals (VVD) have reacted angrily, saying she has put the immigration debate back 20 years.

VVD leader Mark Rutte commented in Monday's Volkskrant: 'She's completely wrong. Christianity and the Bible are Jewish and Christian. That has nothing to do with Jewish integration.'

PVV leader Geert Wilders said if Vogelaar did not take back her comments he would call for her resignation.

The Christian Unie, the small orthodox Christian party which is part of the governing coalition with the PvdA and Christian Democrats, said it is 'worried' about her view of religion.

by Nomad on Tue Jul 17th, 2007 at 12:13:04 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The fact that it's always the Europeans that get testy over usage of the term "the west" says to me that Europeans are uncomfortable with implied linkages and commonalities between the US and its cultural forebearers (Britain, France, Germany, and Scandinavia top the list IMO), because that's what "the west" generally refers to.

you are the media you consume.

by MillMan (millguy at gmail) on Tue Jul 17th, 2007 at 03:53:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
We get testy over the term "Europe" (poemless can attest to that ;-), and over other things too.

Personally, I am increasingly convinced I don't have an allegiance to "The West" in any of its definitions. I also get testy over the use of the term "Spain", come to that.

Can the last politician to go out the revolving door please turn the lights off?

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Jul 17th, 2007 at 06:24:58 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You're just testy in general.  

"Pretending that you already know the answer when you don't is not actually very helpful." ~Migeru.
by poemless on Tue Jul 17th, 2007 at 06:35:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Are you testing me?

Can the last politician to go out the revolving door please turn the lights off?
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Jul 17th, 2007 at 06:41:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Rootless cosmopolitan indeed.

So when I'm in Europe in early '09, how will I know when I'm in Spain?

you are the media you consume.

by MillMan (millguy at gmail) on Tue Jul 17th, 2007 at 07:05:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You will know when you're in the geographical extent under control of the Kingdom of Spain, but you won't be able to know what Spain is, nor should you believe what anyone (including me) tells you it is ;-)

Can the last politician to go out the revolving door please turn the lights off?
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Jul 18th, 2007 at 04:06:47 AM EST
[ Parent ]
This is not the Europeans, this is really Colman and Migeru, who have taken on the thankless task of reminding us that there are a number of words that we use without really thinking about it, and trying to make us explicit what we have in mind when we do use these words.

I personally think it is a worthwhile exercise. Their tone is not testy, just genuinely curious, i think - it's just that it's uqestions that seem so strange to us because we don't ever think about these things otherwise.

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Tue Jul 17th, 2007 at 06:58:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You're too kind. The truth is Colman and I are both mathematicians, versed in category theory, and grumpy to boot. So we mess with your heads.

Can the last politician to go out the revolving door please turn the lights off?
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Jul 18th, 2007 at 04:10:12 AM EST
[ Parent ]
versed in category theory ... So we mess with your heads.

Well it has to have some practical use.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Jul 18th, 2007 at 04:20:27 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Are you saying you do it on purpose?

Can the last politician to go out the revolving door please turn the lights off?
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Jul 18th, 2007 at 04:28:28 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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