Jews Don't Count

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by monkey » Tue May 04, 2021 9:58 pm

individualmember wrote:
Tue May 04, 2021 6:42 pm
I wonder about this: when I see people uttering (usually posting on basefook) conspiracy theories that involve George Soros, I invariably read the mention of Soros as a huge red flag that it’s based in antisemitism. Often I’ll mention this but usually get some argument. I’m not entirely sure that I’m right every time but... what’s the hivemind’s view?

ETA, this isn’t exclusively from people who identify as being on the left. It comes from a section of the right as well.
The trope that Jews control the world by controlling it's finances is an old one. Soros is new by comparison, but conspiracies about him have the same roots. The thankfully few times I have seen Soros conspiracy theory on the internet it has been linked to Cultural Marxism (Soros is paying for it), which is definitely a right wing one, and is also an Antisemitic conspiracy theory by itself, without adding claims about Jewish financiers.

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by discovolante » Tue May 04, 2021 10:03 pm

individualmember wrote:
Tue May 04, 2021 6:42 pm
I wonder about this: when I see people uttering (usually posting on basefook) conspiracy theories that involve George Soros, I invariably read the mention of Soros as a huge red flag that it’s based in antisemitism. Often I’ll mention this but usually get some argument. I’m not entirely sure that I’m right every time but... what’s the hivemind’s view?

ETA, this isn’t exclusively from people who identify as being on the left. It comes from a section of the right as well.
This might be helpful: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/w ... 0515311182
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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by Millennie Al » Wed May 05, 2021 12:42 am

nekomatic wrote:
Mon May 03, 2021 4:29 pm
Minority groups that have historically been oppressed get to have a say in how they are described and portrayed by the majority. The majority don’t get the exact reciprocal right because not being historically oppressed in the same way, they don’t need it. That’s a fairly well established principle and I’m surprised you’re not familiar with it.
And, of course, it is a completely wrong principle which perpetuates the very thing it purports to oppose. It discriminates against a person for being a member of a group rather than on their own personal merits - which is the very basis of sexism, racism, and other prejudices. It embodies the principle that two wrongs make a right.
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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by noggins » Wed May 05, 2021 7:04 am

I think

“we stand against anti-Semitism and all types of Racism”

Isnt just a diversion

From some mouths it means

“we stand against anti-Semitism and all types of Racism [eg the apartheid policies of the colonialist Zionist state]”

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by nekomatic » Wed May 05, 2021 8:51 am

Millennie Al wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 12:42 am
And, of course, it is a completely wrong principle which perpetuates the very thing it purports to oppose. It discriminates against a person for being a member of a group rather than on their own personal merits
And this, of course, is a completely disingenuous argument that rests on the idea that all discrimination must be equally terrible no matter the privilege of its target and from which we get All Lives Matter, men’s rights activists, and the rest.

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by tom p » Wed May 05, 2021 9:32 am

Tessa K wrote:
Tue May 04, 2021 11:08 am
nekomatic wrote:
Mon May 03, 2021 4:29 pm
tom p wrote:
Mon May 03, 2021 1:50 pm
I suppose that if one were to object to gentile actors playing jewish characters, then the converse would also be objectionable
Minority groups that have historically been oppressed get to have a say in how they are described and portrayed by the majority. The majority don’t get the exact reciprocal right because not being historically oppressed in the same way, they don’t need it. That’s a fairly well established principle and I’m surprised you’re not familiar with it.
His objection was more that non-Jewish actors often play Jewish characters in a stereotyped, cliched 'Jewish' oy vey alright already way. It's always been the Hollywood norm for anyone of brownish skin, even Mediterranean, to be cast as any non-white ethnicity, Ben Kingsley and Al Pacino are just two examples.
That makes sense. Seems that I inadvertently created a straw man by arguing against a broader point that wasn't being made*.
Objecting to people who aren't from your background playing a crude caricature of you or your family is perfectly justified.

*I think it was conditioned partly by my dislike of people who whinge about cultural appropriation & so I half saw that argument there, but that's my own bugbear infecting a different discussion

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by Bird on a Fire » Wed May 05, 2021 11:53 am

monkey wrote:
Tue May 04, 2021 9:58 pm
individualmember wrote:
Tue May 04, 2021 6:42 pm
I wonder about this: when I see people uttering (usually posting on basefook) conspiracy theories that involve George Soros, I invariably read the mention of Soros as a huge red flag that it’s based in antisemitism. Often I’ll mention this but usually get some argument. I’m not entirely sure that I’m right every time but... what’s the hivemind’s view?

ETA, this isn’t exclusively from people who identify as being on the left. It comes from a section of the right as well.
The trope that Jews control the world by controlling it's finances is an old one. Soros is new by comparison, but conspiracies about him have the same roots. The thankfully few times I have seen Soros conspiracy theory on the internet it has been linked to Cultural Marxism (Soros is paying for it), which is definitely a right wing one, and is also an Antisemitic conspiracy theory by itself, without adding claims about Jewish financiers.
Yes. Obviously wealthy elites do often conspire to control the world, undermine democracies, etc etc, but it's a lot bigger than one guy and being Jewish has nothing to do with it. I think it's pretty clear that Soros was singled out because he's Jewish.

There might be some naive people who repeat the conspiracy without realising it rests on historical antisemitic tropes, I suppose.
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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by Bird on a Fire » Wed May 05, 2021 12:20 pm

noggins wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 7:04 am
I think

“we stand against anti-Semitism and all types of Racism”

Isnt just a diversion

From some mouths it means

“we stand against anti-Semitism and all types of Racism [eg the apartheid policies of the colonialist Zionist state]”
Yes, it's no small irony that Israeli policy is probably one of the main drivers of antisemitism on the left.

Obviously it's completely possible - and indeed entirely congruent - to be opposed to the racist colonialist policies of Israel and be against antisemitism, as many Jewish people and indeed many Israelis are. But people on both sides of the argument conflate Israeli policy with Jewishness, which is profoundly unhelpful.
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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by tom p » Wed May 05, 2021 12:29 pm

Bird on a Fire wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 12:20 pm
noggins wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 7:04 am
I think

“we stand against anti-Semitism and all types of Racism”

Isnt just a diversion

From some mouths it means

“we stand against anti-Semitism and all types of Racism [eg the apartheid policies of the colonialist Zionist state]”
Yes, it's no small irony that Israeli policy is probably one of the main drivers of antisemitism on the left.

Obviously it's completely possible - and indeed entirely congruent - to be opposed to the racist colonialist policies of Israel and be against antisemitism, as many Jewish people and indeed many Israelis are. But people on both sides of the argument conflate Israeli policy with Jewishness, which is profoundly unhelpful.
Massively.
I do wonder if the fake accusations of antisemitism that Israel has repeatedly made against pretty much all criticism of its policies over the last 20 or so years (they may have been doing it earlier, but I wasn't aware) have led some people to conclude that if reasonable criticism of Israel's latest outrage is antisemitic, then maybe antisemitism isn't such a bad thing, in a boy who cried wolf sort of way.

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by Tessa K » Wed May 05, 2021 12:43 pm

The Balfour Declaration is a part of British history that's often conveniently forgotten. A lot of the problems and violence of the last 100 or so years are directly attributable to it.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-41765892

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by tom p » Wed May 05, 2021 12:55 pm

Tessa K wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 12:43 pm
The Balfour Declaration is a part of British history that's often conveniently forgotten. A lot of the problems and violence of the last 100 or so years are directly attributable to it.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-41765892
Forgotten by the brits anyway.
The population of much of the middle east certainly haven't forgotten it!

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by Tessa K » Wed May 05, 2021 1:04 pm

tom p wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 12:55 pm
Tessa K wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 12:43 pm
The Balfour Declaration is a part of British history that's often conveniently forgotten. A lot of the problems and violence of the last 100 or so years are directly attributable to it.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-41765892
Forgotten by the brits anyway.
The population of much of the middle east certainly haven't forgotten it!
Funny that. It's a bit like how we don't get taught much about the appalling way the British government (and monarchy) behaved in Ireland for hundreds of years, as if the IRA came out of nowhere. Anyway, that's a different thread. I haven't looked into the real motives behind the Balfour Declaration yet.

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by dyqik » Wed May 05, 2021 5:16 pm

Tessa K wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 1:04 pm
tom p wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 12:55 pm
Tessa K wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 12:43 pm
The Balfour Declaration is a part of British history that's often conveniently forgotten. A lot of the problems and violence of the last 100 or so years are directly attributable to it.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-41765892
Forgotten by the brits anyway.
The population of much of the middle east certainly haven't forgotten it!
Funny that. It's a bit like how we don't get taught much about the appalling way the British government (and monarchy) behaved in Ireland for hundreds of years, as if the IRA came out of nowhere. Anyway, that's a different thread. I haven't looked into the real motives behind the Balfour Declaration yet.
IIRC from Richard Rhodes' "The Making of the Atomic Bomb", then at least one motive came from the influence of Chaim Weizmann following his contribution to the production of acetone from chestnuts and maize for making explosives in WWI, as a solution to the Shell Crisis of 1915.

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by bob sterman » Wed May 05, 2021 6:04 pm

noggins wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 7:04 am
I think

“we stand against anti-Semitism and all types of Racism”

Isnt just a diversion

From some mouths it means

“we stand against anti-Semitism and all types of Racism [eg the apartheid policies of the colonialist Zionist state]”
That is probably what some people mean.

But why should a Jewish person in the UK, who feels they have been a victim of antisemitism, need to have their concerns diluted by somehow linking their experiences to the behaviour of state that they may have nothing to do with? i.e. why should a non-Zionist, potentially atheist person from a Jewish background who has experienced antisemitism not be able to have this condemned except in conjunction with a condemnation of Israel?

Can Islamaphopic racism only be condemed in conjunction with a condemnation of other Middle Eastern states?

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by Squeak » Wed May 05, 2021 11:04 pm

bob sterman wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 6:04 pm
noggins wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 7:04 am
I think

“we stand against anti-Semitism and all types of Racism”

Isnt just a diversion

From some mouths it means

“we stand against anti-Semitism and all types of Racism [eg the apartheid policies of the colonialist Zionist state]”
That is probably what some people mean.

But why should a Jewish person in the UK, who feels they have been a victim of antisemitism, need to have their concerns diluted by somehow linking their experiences to the behaviour of state that they may have nothing to do with? i.e. why should a non-Zionist, potentially atheist person from a Jewish background who has experienced antisemitism not be able to have this condemned except in conjunction with a condemnation of Israel?

Can Islamaphopic racism only be condemed in conjunction with a condemnation of other Middle Eastern states?
I read you and noggins as being in agreement here. I took noggins' description to mean that from some people's mouths, it's not just a broadening of the condemnation of anti-semitism but actually an undermining of the accusation itself. I don't think they were trying to say that the behaviour is ok. Noggin? Am I reading you correctly?

For those who explicitly made the all lives matter link to statements of all racism matters, thank you. That's a very useful formulation that I will carry in my mind.

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by Millennie Al » Thu May 06, 2021 1:42 am

nekomatic wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 8:51 am
Millennie Al wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 12:42 am
And, of course, it is a completely wrong principle which perpetuates the very thing it purports to oppose. It discriminates against a person for being a member of a group rather than on their own personal merits
And this, of course, is a completely disingenuous argument that rests on the idea that all discrimination must be equally terrible no matter the privilege of its target and from which we get All Lives Matter, men’s rights activists, and the rest.
That is complete nonsense. There can quite easily be different severities of discrimination which all deserve to be opposed. Just as you can oppose theft in principle while recognising that stealing $1 is different to stealing $100 or $10,000.
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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by noggins » Thu May 06, 2021 10:56 am

Squeak wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 11:04 pm

I read you and noggins as being in agreement here. I took noggins' description to mean that from some people's mouths, it's not just a broadening of the condemnation of anti-semitism but actually an undermining of the accusation itself. I don't think they were trying to say that the behaviour is ok. Noggin? Am I reading you correctly?

For those who explicitly made the all lives matter link to statements of all racism matters, thank you. That's a very useful formulation that I will carry in my mind.
Yes thanks I meant it that way.

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by nekomatic » Thu May 06, 2021 11:14 am

Millennie Al wrote:
Thu May 06, 2021 1:42 am
There can quite easily be different severities of discrimination which all deserve to be opposed. Just as you can oppose theft in principle while recognising that stealing $1 is different to stealing $100 or $10,000.
To me though, your argument sounded more like ‘theft is wrong, therefore the government has no right to impose fines or taxes’. We can allow confiscation of people’s money or property if by consent it’s for the common good, and we can allow some discrimination if by consent it’s to try and rectify ingrained injustice. I’m not overlooking the importance of the consent bit.

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by bjn » Thu May 06, 2021 3:21 pm

Badiel talks about the book, Jewishness and antisemitism on the “we have ways of making you talk” history podcast which came out a few days ago.

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by Millennie Al » Sat May 08, 2021 2:06 am

nekomatic wrote:
Thu May 06, 2021 11:14 am
Millennie Al wrote:
Thu May 06, 2021 1:42 am
There can quite easily be different severities of discrimination which all deserve to be opposed. Just as you can oppose theft in principle while recognising that stealing $1 is different to stealing $100 or $10,000.
To me though, your argument sounded more like ‘theft is wrong, therefore the government has no right to impose fines or taxes’. We can allow confiscation of people’s money or property if by consent it’s for the common good, and we can allow some discrimination if by consent it’s to try and rectify ingrained injustice. I’m not overlooking the importance of the consent bit.
Whose consent? Those discriminated against, or those benfiting from it?

But discrimination rarely rectifies ingrained injustice. Suppose there has been chronic antisemitism and as a result, twenty years ago, Ben lost out to John for a part. As a result he got discouraged, gave up acting, and became an accountant. Today, Ruth and Jane are competing for a part. If Jane is slightly better, but you choose Ruth in a misguided attempt to correct past antisemitism, you are actually not achieving that but further reinforcing divisions in society by showing that you think Ruth and Ben are characterised by their Jewishness rather than simply being individuals. And, of course, in reality Ben does not benefit from what happens today - you can't fix the past, but misguided attempts to do so can damage the present.

That does not mean that past prejudice should always be ignored. It's possible you might be choosing between people where one is currently not as good due to the effects of past prejudice. You can take care to consider whether they might actually be just as good or better due to their potential if given a fair opportunity and choose them over the others on that basis. This is considering them on their merits. You are still making a fair choice even though at first glance you appear to be picking a worse candidate.
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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by Squeak » Sat May 08, 2021 3:38 am

All this assumes that the person deciding the merits of the candidates is truly impartial and I believe it's been repeatedly shown that people are much better at thinking they're impartial than at actually being impartial. The classic example shown to demonstrate this is the Philadelphia orchestra, which tried to gender-balance their hiring decisions by picking the best candidates regardless of gender, with minimal effect until they started auditioning musicians behind a screen. It turns out that these well-meaning selectors were as biased as the society they grew up in.

The small decisions early in a person's career about potential are most vulnerable to these kinds of subjective judgement calls, and they snowball as the perceived better early career folk get given opportunities that are denied to people who aren't seen to be made of the right stuff.

Meritocracy is one of those wonderful ideals that turns out to be a wonderful cover for not actually changing the status quo. Forcing people to actively consider whether their idea of merit is actually just their old prejudices in shiny new clothes is really important. And sadly, ingrained biases are really hard to root out.

In a performance space, this is only part of the picture. The stories our culture tells show people who they are and who they can be. Majority groups dressing up as marginalised people tells a very important narrative about whose stories get told and how.

Millennie Al, I suspect that you're not a member of a group who grew up never seeing anyone on screen or in novels who you could relate to. Or at least, the people like you probably got to have starring roles and not just sidekick/tortured tragedy type roles. I listen to people who aren't so lucky and many of them really value seeing People Like Them telling nuanced stories about life. I think that's an important value.

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by Tessa K » Sat May 08, 2021 7:46 am

Squeak wrote:
Sat May 08, 2021 3:38 am
In a performance space, this is only part of the picture. The stories our culture tells show people who they are and who they can be. Majority groups dressing up as marginalised people tells a very important narrative about whose stories get told and how.

Millennie Al, I suspect that you're not a member of a group who grew up never seeing anyone on screen or in novels who you could relate to. Or at least, the people like you probably got to have starring roles and not just sidekick/tortured tragedy type roles. I listen to people who aren't so lucky and many of them really value seeing People Like Them telling nuanced stories about life. I think that's an important value.
Agreed. It's also important for people to see someone different from them on screen/stage etc. It normalises all kinds of people doing all kinds of jobs, for example, and this has a knock-on effect in real life. For me it was seeing women being more than set dressing or a token, playing active, central roles. There was very little of that in the late 60s and 70s and even then it was most often presented as a novelty. It took very much longer for ethnic minorities to be well represented and even now, as we see from this discussion, there's a way to go.

If I think about representations of Jewish people when I was a kiddie, it was pretty much just Fagin in the Oliver! film; although Ron Moody was Jewish, the role was hardly a positive one. The only other film I can think of is Fiddler On The Roof and although that was more positive in some ways, it was far from being present day.

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by basementer » Sat May 08, 2021 9:23 am

"Jewish" was used purely as a synonym for "miserly" by the boys at my secondary school. It didn't signify a cultural group at all.
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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by bjn » Sat May 08, 2021 11:34 am

Squeak wrote:
Sat May 08, 2021 3:38 am
Meritocracy is one of those wonderful ideals that turns out to be a wonderful cover for not actually changing the status quo. Forcing people to actively consider whether their idea of merit is actually just their old prejudices in shiny new clothes is really important. And sadly, ingrained biases are really hard to root out.
Michael Dunlop Young, the chap who coined the word Meritocracy did so sarcastically in the essay The Rise Of The Meritocracy. It pointed out that selection bias would be a thing, that it would lead to a set of smug self selected folk who think they deserve to be there, shutting out others.
Michael Dunlop Young wrote:It is good sense to appoint individual people to jobs on their merit. It is the opposite when those who are judged to have merit of a particular kind harden into a new social class without room in it for others.

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Re: Jews Don't Count

Post by bjn » Sat May 08, 2021 11:36 am

basementer wrote:
Sat May 08, 2021 9:23 am
"Jewish" was used purely as a synonym for "miserly" by the boys at my secondary school. It didn't signify a cultural group at all.
"Jew" was also used as an insult for misers at my primary school. I didn't know it actually was the name for a group of people until years later.

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