One of the reasons I started to learn Danish was to be able to read the articles in Polemiken. La Kimpolina’s hilarious photoshop jobs were evidence of a witty and entertaining personality, and I wanted to make sense of the text as well.
Alas, her Danish is still too slangy and idiosyncratic for me to translate effectively. But fortunately I have the help of the Danish blogger Mikkel Høgh, who has translated this post from yesterday’s Polemiken. La Kimpolina is referring here to an article from Norge Idag (Norway Today) about the second Global Inter-Media Dialog, which just wrapped up in Oslo on Friday:
When democracy stands in the way of the multicultural utopia, the world press will have to take action… If the goal is to surpass George Orwell’s dystopian vision
Yesterday, 100 editors and journalists from all around the world met in Oslo to take part in an international conference about media and globalisation.
UN Special Envoy for monitoring of racism and xenophobia, Dodou Diene, started the conference by asking the press to actively help to create a multicultural society. He expressed concern that democratic processes can lead to immigration-limiting political parties coming to power. [As here in Denmark — MH]
The terrorist attacks on 9/11 and last year’s cartoon crisis have changed international society. Cultural and religious conflicts dominate the global news in a much greater way than earlier. The conference discussed the role and responsibility of the press in a world where information flies around the world in seconds and dissimilar cultures and ethnic groups live ever closer to another.
Kimpolina’s comment: When it now appears a great problem that clashing cultures and ethnic groups live still closer to each other, would it not be in order to at least think about changing course and dropping the ridiculous, utopian dream about the multicultural world?
When reality clashes with dreams, is it then really the role and responsibility of the press to try to disguise reality? If so, I think the dream is becoming a nightmare, when unrealistic dreams are being forced upon us.
Should the press take action and take over when democracy threatens the dream, as the people vote for politicians with both feet on the ground, and because people want to move in a different direction than… who? Who is it that is really behind all this?
Globalisation, perhaps? Is that the new almighty god, that one cannot or must not thwart? A natural law, that is suddenly higher than human will and force of action?
Yes, I’m just asking. Where is world society is going? George Orwell must be turning over in his grave.
If I could be allowed to decide a single thing, it would be the imminent closure of both UN and EU. Closed.
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The Norwegian article continues:
The UN Special Envoy also claimed that European governments that have implemented a tough policy on immigration, such as those of Austria, Switzerland, and Denmark, are racists. He also expressed concern for democratic processes that could lead to immigration restrictive political parties coming to power.
The UN’s racism monitor (the special envoy) also claimed that it marked a dangerous trend that still more intellectuals and academicians in the western world thinks that some cultures or religions are better than others.
Agnes Callamard, leader of the free speech organisation Article 19, expressed concern that it can become difficult to attain the ideal of equal representation and focus on all groups of society, if you cannot control the state channels. The ethnic, cultural and religious plurality must dominate the media, if we are to succeed in advancing the multicultural society, she said.
God help us!
That an organisation for FREE SPEECH talks about the necessity of manipulating the media’s structure and expression to push through an ideology, one that could not see realisation without democracy and the unidealistic populations getting in the way, is startling.
Limits on freedom of speech are demanded to prevent trouble arising from the fact that information spreads at lightning speed across the entire globe, and that a large mass of people from the culturally undeveloped part of the world are now living in highly developed Western countries. Amazing that no one can see the paradoxes.
Just the designation “monitor of racism and xenophobia” gives me the creeps.
I wonder if the vanguard have studied racism and xenophobia in those countries where most of the immigrants come from? And where they themselves come from? Why is it that people from undeveloped cultures immigrate by the millions into developed and functional societies? Is it not because our own culture and societal structure appears better to the immigrants than their own?
The only mention of the Oslo conference I could find in the English-language news media is an article by Endy M. Bayuni in The Jakarta Post, dating from the first day of the conference (June 5th):
Nations may have become more multicultural thanks to advances in transportation and communication technology but the world is not necessarily a safer place to live in. Some parts of the world are still engulfed in wars and conflicts, others in tensions that divide societies, or pit nations against nations, along racial, ethnic or religious lines.
But what are journalists to do about this?
More than 80 media practitioners are meeting here Monday and Tuesday for the second Global Inter-Media Dialog to discuss this particular issue.
With the theme, “Primetime Diversity — Journalism in a Troubled World”, the gathering is facilitated jointly by the Norwegian and Indonesian governments, and it follows the successful inaugural dialog held in Bali last year.
“The media must transform diversity, which is a fact of life, into pluralism, which is a set of values,” Dodou Diene, a top United Nations official, said during the meeting’s opening day.
Societies must recognize, accept and then defend and promote diversity, said the UN special rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination and xenophobia and related intolerance.
As I mentioned yesterday, the UN, the EU, and all the various NGOs are fond of emphasizing “what must be done”. They know what’s good for us and for the planet, and we must cooperate with the implementation of their plans.
Diversity is good. So we must have diversity. The wrong type of media coverage can damage the cause of diversity, so the media must be controlled.
What do you mean, all these “musts” are not so obvious to you? What are you, anyway, a racist?
Time to get with the program. If we thought that ordinary people should be consulted about these matters, we wouldn’t have created the UN and the EU.
Getting diversity accepted is the role of the education system, and acceptance is the role of the law, Diene said. “Promoting and defending diversity is the task of the media.”
There are so many anti-liberal totalitarian depth charges concealed in that last paragraph that it’s hard to know where to begin.
Getting diversity accepted is the role of the education system.
Who says? The parents of the children being “educated”? The members of the local school boards? Our elected representatives?
Or might it just be those unelected and corrupt bureaucrats in Brussels and Turtle Bay?
Acceptance of diversity is the role of the law.
What law? Whose law? Who passed it? Who enforces it?
Did any elected official in any of the Western democracies attain his office by promising the voters that he would pass laws enforcing the “acceptance of diversity”?
Promoting and defending diversity is the task of the media.
That’s funny — I thought the task of the media was to report the news, to ferret out facts that are interesting to the public at large and present them in an accessible format.
Or is that just a Fox thing?
The Jakarta Post aricle goes on to say:
He noted with concern how xenophobia and racism had found their way into the election platforms of political parties in some European countries, and that once elected they would push to turn their anti-immigration agendas into policy.
He also attacked scholars who give intellectual legitimacy to racism and xenophobia, singling out Harvard University professor Samuel Huntington, who wrote about the so-called “Latin threat” to the U.S. in a recent book.
If he thinks racism and xenophobia are emerging in Europe now, wait until a few more years of press censorship have gone by. When he and his UN cronies are finally forced to take their hands of the top of the boiling pot, the explosion of xenophobia that bursts out will make today’s “racists” look like the organizers of the Ann Arbor Multiculturalism Festival.
Conspicuously absent at the dialog are journalists from Britain, France and the U.S., three countries that are facing the challenges of multiculturalism. Particularly challenging to them is the presence of growing Muslim communities in their midst. The organizers said invitations had been sent but no one took up the offer.
It’s good to hear that the Anglosphere has not entirely lost its collective mind.
The concentration of media ownership also came under criticism from Norwegian Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Stored, who raised questions about the credibility of the media.
Remember: what these folks really mean is that media ownership is concentrated in the wrong hands.
That is, they don’t control all the organs of the press themselves.
Citing the example of Russia’s Gazprom, which owns a large share of the Russian press, he said this situation allowed one stakeholder to claim to present the truth. “Can democracy cope with that?”
Not in Russia it can’t, since Russia has no democracy.
Gahr said freedom of the media is essential for journalists to do their job effectively in multicultural societies. “Freedom of the media is concerned with defending and protecting diversity.”
Do I contradict myself? Very well, then, I contradict myself! I am large; I contain multitudes.
Multicultural multitudes, that is.
The idea for the dialog came in the wake of the controversy over the publication of cartoons deemed offensive by Muslims in European publications last year. The controversy became one pitting freedom of expression against those calling on the media to show greater cultural sensitivity.
Indonesian Information and Communications Minister Mohammad Nuh, in his keynote address Monday, recalled that a consensus was reached in the first dialog in Bali that freedom of expression and sensitivity to the cultural and religious sentiments of others could go hand in hand.
“That is only possible, however, when everyone concerned is aware of the cultural and religious sensitivities of other societies, hence the need for constant dialog.”
Make no mistake: all this doublespeak about “freedom of speech” in partnership with “sensitivity” is just code for “controlling the press”. The process is already underway, with Finland, Sweden, and France taking the lead in enforcing a content-code on journalists.
The other arm of the speech-suppression pincer consists of civil suits by the Islamists against those who dare stray from the multicultural party line. This process is also underway, with bloggers being sued for their “racist” opinions about Islam.
The Project aims to emerge victorious over the decadent West, and suicide bombers and weaponized anthrax are only part of the strategy, and not even the most import ones.
The most important offensive is against our God-given right to speak and write freely. Freedom of speech, as Yggdrasil has emphasized, constitutes the core of Western civilization. It lies at the very heart of liberal pluralism.
When we can no longer speak our minds, it’s only a matter of time before we can’t even think incorrect thoughts. The habits of rational thought require a continuous and reasoned public discourse.
But don’t worry about that. Just relax, and get with the program.
Time to tuck your head back into the good ol’ Multicultural sand.
Hat tip for the Polemiken article: LN.