Wednesday, February 21, 2007

"Anti-American feelings soar among Muslims"

Is the unsurprising result of a Gallup poll amongst Muslims world-wide.

There's a couple of points that confirm what anyone interested in this whole area should know already:

1) 'Radicalisation' has nothing to do with religiosity as such:
""They often charge that religious fervour triggers radical and violent views," said John Esposito, a religion professor, and Dalia Mogahed, Gallup’s Muslim studies director, in one analysis. "But the data say otherwise. There is no significant difference in religiosity between moderates and radicals. In fact, radicals are no more likely to attend religious services regularly than are moderates.""
Anyone familiar with the insights that can be gained from Max Weber understood this already. It is assumed that the more religious a person is, the more likely they will be to express this religiosity theocratically. This is not the case. Weber's insight was that religious virtuosity can express itself theocratically - but it can also drive a person to either retreat from the world in a spirit of quietism or engage with it in a spirit of asceticism, without any recourse to politics. Those who think otherwise, if I may say so, are thinking too idealistically. Those of us that call themselves liberals should be unconcerned with what people believe unless this expresses itself in terms of political power. Dawkins, Hitchens, Hari et al take note. Or read a book or something.

2) 'Radicalisation' has nothing to do with poverty:
"But are radicals any poorer than their fellow Muslims? We found the opposite: there is indeed a key difference between radicals and moderates when it comes to income and education, but it is the radicals who earn more and stay in school longer."
This also should have been understood already. Those involved in Al-Qaeda operations are, on average, more likely to have received further and university level education than the average American. The reason this demonstrable fact hasn't filtered through is because there are still some who insist on trying to lever the phenomenon of jihadism into a Marxian framework. Pity for them.

Other news: Kulvinder of Pickled Politics defends the right of pupils to wear whatever they damn well please, even if it happens to be a moveable tent. Yeah, that's gonna help. I have to repeat the question because 'libertarians' on the subject of education have yet to furnish me with an answer. Not just a satisfactory answer - any answer. So let me repeat the question: why not follow through the logic of your position and make school voluntary? Hmmm?


The Editor said...

They just get all fired up when they have contact with the West and see how debauched we all are.

Anonymous said...

I wonder what the result would be, though, if one conducted a poll amongst the anti-American muslims and asked them:
"If you were offered a visa to go and live in America and become a citizen, would you accept it?"

Mr Grumpy said...

I notice that anti-American feelings have actually declined since 2001... in Iran. Which I suspect might not have been the case without the overthrow of Saddam. You can't please everyone.

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