First published on The Standard
Kia ora! There have been some terrific posts here at TS on the cancelled Canadian crypto fascists’ speaking tour. I also have some thoughts on the matter.
Firstly, there is no such thing as ‘free speech’. Secondly, Chris Trotter is the very definition of a ‘useful idiot’.
This week, the self identified “left leaning commentator” was the poster boy for NZ’s Alt Reich, claiming that stopping neo Nazis from spreading hate was A Very Bad Thing.
“We accept the case for blocking genuine hate speech, such as incitements of violence or other illegal activity. But curbing free debate under threat of disruption is neither desirable nor acceptable in a free and democratic society. Truth is not afraid of trigger-words. Truth does not need a safe space. Truth is not a snowflake. Truth can take the heat and most certainly should not be forced to vacate the kitchen in the face of a couple of Alt-Right populists and a politically-correct Mayor.”
Note the use of the language of the oppressor. Trigger words, safe space, snowflake, politically correct. How daring to use the sneering memes of the Breitbart (de)generation. And who’s ‘we’, I hear you ask.
Well, Trotter’s Independent Traders include the following right wing hacks:
- Dr. Michael Bassett
- Dr. Don Brash
- Stephen Franks
- Lindsay Perigo
- Jordan Williams
Fine company for a supposed lefty, if you don’t mind holding your nose!
Brash, of course, is a thoroughly obnoxious hypocrite, whose hatred of ‘free speech’ was best illustrated by his recent red faced racist tirade against te reo maori. The rest of the old white men listed above are also Actoids or worse. It shouldn’t be a surprise that the far right in NZ would want to press the flesh of the two Canadian ubermensches, however, it’s shameful and ignorant for the old white man Chris Trotter to fall for this blackshirted bollocks.
There never has been free speech. Even its artsy fartsy cousin, freedom of expression, is a mirage. Real freedom is not what you say, it’s how you live. And we do not live free lives. The world is not free from poverty, is not free from climate change, is not free from fear. Most importantly, we are not free of capitalism, which profits handsomely from our enslavement.
There never has been free speech and there never will be. What the supposed ‘Free Speech Coalition’ actually want is freedom from consequence. That’s the same attitude international capital takes towards climate change; sure we caused it, but cleaning it up is your problem, world.
Yeah, nah. There is always consequence. Chat shit, get banged, as the footballing philosopher Jamie Vardy put it.
Lets be clear; fascism is not an intellectual exercise. It’s the epitome of evil, a cancer on humanity. My grandparents didn’t debate Nazis, they shot them.
Chris Trotter has got a new gig as a fluffer for fascism. Never forget that. Next time you read one of his pompous pieces in the paper or on a blog that should know better, remember that this is the guy who was happy to big up bigotry.