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Yes, monopolizing public opinion. Everyone knows the European media, owned by conglomerates, presents a one-sided pro-US view. It's shameful, really.

Alright, that's about it. Despite all that argument on the Islamicist thread, all it will take is one more fool to make me switch sides.

Has anyone heard from Noam Chomsky about this?

Guenter Grass 'took' the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1999?

Did they at least make him give it back?

Herr Grass must have been going nuts these past few months waiting for the "fundamentalists" in the Middle East to actually "respond." I mean, the cartoons were published in September 2005, so for nearly 5 months he has had to bite his lip.

I wonder what he thinks of the fact that Egypt published the cartoons in October 2005 -- during Ramadan.

And, someone explain this quote to me:

"'Where does the West take that arrogance to impose what must and must not be done?' Grass asked, stressing the relativity of the freedom of opinion in the West where the media are controlled by conglomerates 'monopolizing the public opinion.'"

Isn't he practicing the same arrogance he sneers at in the article? Hey, Guenter, turn around and show me your *other* face.

I liked this quote from Jose Saramago:

"It would not be a question of censoring oneself, but of using common sense," said Portugal's Jose Saramago, winner of the 1998 literature Nobel."

Uh, Jose, when was common sense ever a factor in journalism?

"Arrogance to impose what must and must not be done"?? The "West" did not decide to force the Arab News to print them. Denmark decided that Denmark would have press freedom, and Denmark can decide that if the rest of the world doesn't like it, they can go to hell. And before he decries the goosestep of public opinion by the press, he can pick up a newspaper here in Germany.

Grunter Gas is another author who praises any autocrat and excoriates the West, while enjoying the stability and comforts of the West. In a word, a hypocrite.

I guess we whouldn't be surprised. He also thought that the Wiedervereinigung was going to usher in the Fourth Reich and that Helmut Kohl was secretly a nazi. I'm glad he got the Nobel Prize though. Just like Jimmy Carter and Yassar Arafat.

And the logical destination of Grass's so-called argument is "Theo van Gogh deserved it".

We're getting more of the same from the hypocrites at SPON, as what American blogger Josh Marshall would call their "bamboozle-palooza" campaign to divert attention from their own cowardly failure to do their job continues. Predictably, these Pharisees are striking the usual poses from the "moral high ground," pretending the cartoon affair is all about those evil, conservative, insensitive editors of Jyllands-Posten, and has virtually nothing to do with the free speech issues so eloquently raised by Thomas Kleine-Brockhoff of Die Zeit. The shill they trotted out this time from their stable of "Friedensforscher," "Psychoanalytiker," and "Politologen," mouthpieces is even more abject than usual, claiming that, "Der moderne Mythos vom 'kleinen toleranten Volk', das seinen Ursprung in einer Gruppe tapferer Dänen hatte, die ihr Leben aufs Spiel setzten, um Juden vor der Nazi-Deportation im Jahr 1943 zu retten, ist gestorben." "Gestorben," after thousands risked, and in some cases, lost their own lives, because of a few cartoons? Don't even think of speaking for me, Ms. Klausen. I've met one of those heroes personally, and the glory the Danish people gained by those acts of courage will never die as far as I'm concerned.

What a contrast with the abject cowardice of SPON's editors. They would have us believe that they have suddenly become "sensitive," and "respectful," defenders of multi-culturalism. These are the same people, you will recall, who have been conducting an unprecedented campaign of vilification against the American people for the last decade, replete with racist stereotyping, insulting desecration of our flag, and propaganda lies disquised as half-truths. These are the same people whose most significant contribution to German "culture" has been an incredible refinement of the "nuance" and "taste" with which one can express hatred, contempt, and scorn. Now, suddenly, they would have us believe, they've seen the light. Witness the new Spiegel, transformed overnight into paragons of multi-cultural "respect" and "sensitivity!"

I have no doubt that SPON will have no trouble finding another battalion of "Friedensforscher" and "Psychoanalytiker," among its army of shills to explain why "respect," and "sensitivity" are only justified in the case of Islam, not other religions and certainly not the U.S. I also have no doubt about the real reason they have so abjectly failed to inform the German people regarding a matter of vital importance to them. They are physical cowards who have been successfully intimidated.

The fundamentalistic act that "the West" committed? It exists. How dare it!

Yesterday I started writing an OT comment on DMK regarding Grass's comments, and then I just quit. I felt I would drown in my vomit if I spent more time on his words. I don't know how his little brain doesn't explode from this amazingly distorted thought process. Here we have Grass, who adores his freedom of expression when he bashes Bush/USA, but who believes the same freedom of expression is "xenophobic" when used by others. I don't know how those two opposed personalities can peacefully co-exist in one single person. Well in fact, they don't. All the split personalities like Grass (and there are also many in the US) are derranged individuals who are first and foremost at conflict with themselves and, by extension, with the world around them.

Inspite of the constant acts of serfdom I don't believe the civilized world will "go down". It might get extremely close to that, but eventually it will prevail. It's just mind-numbing; I sit totally transfixed in front of the TV or newspaper when I see the Grass-types expressing their perfect understanding for the criminal rioters and condemning freedom of speech. (Sure, they don't condemn they own freedom of speech, they condemn the freedom of speech of others).

Yesterday in the car I happened to listen to Michael Savage (who for my taste is most of the times way too insensitive) for a few minutes and he was repeating something that many have come to understand better lately - the Left is at its core fascistic and totalitarian. In fact, it can't be otherwise. It's poster child, noble Socialism mutated into the most horrendous form in known history - Communism. When I watch this huge upheaval unfolding in the civilized world I know pretty much what the Left will say, what their limitations are, what they try to reach etc etc. I also know that eventually they will not prevail. I have just one question left - how far will they go? The answer to that question always amazes me and gives me new insight into the darkness of the human soul. I am convinced that even after the murderous Soviet genocide, if, by some weird whim of history, Communism gained ground in some Western country, there would be no shortage of home-grown political Kommisars. That's where we are right now.

@Helian. excellent comment and analysis.

@ WhatDoIKnow

A college friend of mine was stationed in Berlin in the mid and late sixties. This was the time that the Berlin Wall was a novelty and there was plenty of cold war intrigue coming in and out of Berlin.

He claims that Guenter Grass used to troll for GI's at the American library and at other venues where GI's used to hang around.

I have no idea if this was a gay thing. But at a minimum, Grass used to idolize Americans and he couldn’t get enough of talking to them.

He has made an amazing metamorphous. He has gone from a cheerleader for JFK and Elvis to a bitter old man that believes that America has destroyed the world's greatest cause: socialism.

It is too bad that Kafka predeceased him. If Kafka were alive, Kafka would change Grass from an Amie-loving, pro-democratic human being to an American bashing, nihilistic cockroach.

More and more voices of sanity are being raised against the "moderates," the triangulators with their unctuous, patronizing attempts to pose as the squeaky clean "voices of reason," people for whom the highest moral value in the universe seems to be appeasing mobs of religious bigots. A powerful and principled one was raised today in the Washington Post by Charles Krauthammer. You have to register to read it, but it's free, and well worth the effort. It's gratifying that so many intellectuals who aren't in the mindless ideological hack category are starting to come down on the right side of this issue. People are finally starting to realize that they, too, have values worth defending, and sometimes it's necessary to take a stand to do just that.

I'm not too worried about leftish chatterboxes like Grass and the elites' media. They're nothing but silly old gigolos to every 3rd world thug and mob, and on top of that, utter cowards, as the cartoon hysteria has shown so clearly. They've long overstayed their welcome. Let's waste no more time on them and plant our ideas in more receptive soil. The people of the West.

Freedom of speech and thought is for everyone or it's for no one. It amazes me that I, a near semiliterate, can grasp this reality and those whom are my intellectual betters can't. I say it's for everyone.

An observation. Often a Noble prize for anything other than science is an indication of one who is out of touch with the real world. You can safely ingnore anything the prize winner says or writes.

Better than that, Helian.

Michael Kinsley is on the same side as Krauthammer.

And believe it or not, Ted Rall.


>>"It is too bad that Kafka predeceased him. If Kafka were alive, Kafka would change Grass from an Amie-loving, pro-democratic human being to an American bashing, nihilistic cockroach."

Not a cockroach, George M, an "ungeheuren Ungeziefer." It took a Czech to show the world that you can do a few things with German that English just can't match. No English translation of that first sentence has ever come close.

Don't miss Andrew Sullivan's posts and links on the cartoon issue. I don't agree with him all the time, but he's a thoughtful, independent thinker, and this time he's got it 100% right. He also has more courage than all the MSM newspaper editors in the US combined.

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