It is remarkable to note in passing that following New Labour’s landslide electoral victory in 1997, the toryite leader of the Labour Party – Tony Blair – actually chose to leave Chris Patten in place, presumably as his naturally rightwing political leanings, or so Blair thought, represented the New Labour ethos exactly. Of course, not to remain insular and Eurocentric about this serious matter, the British rightwing made use of Chris Patten to eulogise a dying idea of the despicable institution of ‘empire’, and inflicted Patten’s ignorance upon the Chinese people of Hong Kong, who had to continue to kowtow to the continuous injustices inflicted physically and psychologically upon them by the presence of foreign invaders, and their proselytising Judeo-Christian church. The measure of Chris Patten’s Eurocentric ignorance, racism, prejudice, and discriminative attitude, can be found with just a superficial reading of his memoirs of his time lording it over the Chinese people. He is unrepentant and fully committed to a ‘Little England’ mentality that simultaneously reduces the rest of the world to an uncivilised and as of yet unChristianised mess that is just waiting for people like him to save it from its own innate, inferior barbarism. It is true that by the time of his tenure, Hong Kong had been preparing for reversion back to Chinese rule for some time, and the British military and police forces were keeping a low profile so as not to antagonise the local Chinese population, or trigger the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) from prematurely coming over the border and freeing the area by force.
Hobsbawm’s work is popular throughout the bourgeois system because it undermines the very Marxism it claims to represent, through the careful and clever presentation of many small, but important misrepresentations of Marxist philosophy and its application. The over-all effect of this policy is a movement away from a correct Marxist analysis and toward a thoroughly (and for Hobsbawm a comfortable) bourgeois interpretation. His deliberate and illogical separation of the Russian Communist Revolution from that of the Chinese Revolution is bizarre in its certainty, and smirks of Eurocentric bias bordering on the racist. Whatever Hobsbawm motivation for this flawed analysis, it is obvious that he does not adhere to the Marxist principle of ‘internationalism’.
The greedy banks would rather pay the FOS £800 than re-imburse the individual client concerned, but even when the FOS is investigating individual complaints, their procedure is actually seeking to absolve the bank from any guilt through various legal sophistries. Obvious illegal behaviour or acts of blatant discrimination are explained away through ‘lack of evidence’, or as ‘matters outside the remit of the FOS’, etc. In reality, the bourgeois FOS is acting in consort with the banking system. The purpose of this cooperation is to limit the extent to which the UK (and international) financial sector is inconvenienced (or damaged) by the legislation finding the banks guilty of fraud.
Bourgeois feminism is very different. This is the feminism of the middle class, and already socially privileged women. These women, as wives of the rich and famous, have had historically a remarkable amount of leisure time and relative freedom compared to their working class counter-parts. This apparent ‘freedom’ exists only within the framework of an unquestionable bourgeois patriarchy. It is freedom at a cost and the cost is humanity living free of oppression. Middle class women have had access to a greater array of educational facilities, be they teachers, books, or academic instruction. Middle class women fought for, and finally secured the vote because their privileged socio-economic conditions allowed them the insight to see partly beyond their own negative conditioning. Bourgeois feminism is nothing more than the exercise of political compromise as whatever concessions are granted to a middle class woman, they can not be allowed to directly challenge or alter the essential framework of the bourgeois exploitative state. Exploitation and class difference must be allowed to continue unopposed, in the old way.
UN anti-racism is thoroughly bourgeois in nature and those of the Left should treat it with the contempt it deserves, whilst simultaneously using the ‘official status’ of the UN day to work for the true ending of racism through the complete over-throw of the inherently unequal, uncaring, and brutal bourgeois capitalist system. Bourgeois ‘equality’ is not equality at all, but a sinister mirage designed to make fools of its intended beneficiaries.
The Christian monastic tradition, as manifest through Western Christianity, has generally combined a stringent discipline with voluntary poverty and celibacy. The idealised image of the Buddhist monk, as it has entered the Western psyche, is one of a man who has abandoned what is here (real material life), for what is over there (imagined religious realms). Of course, as what is over there, by definition, is never here and now, its presence can never be empirically confirmed. The Buddhist rules followed by monastics and the laity take the place of Christian piety in the West, but are adhered to by most Westerners with a similar fanatic attitude that completely misses the point the rule is assumed to be designed to achieve. The physical practice of Buddhist meditation is of course the act of Christian prayer wrapped in saffron robes. Western converts meditate as if they are praying to a divine being, but with the added titillation that the divine being in question is their own imagined self-essence – or god removed from his heaven and relocated into their own head. Chanting mantras – the holy syllables of the East – replaces the singing of hymns and the chanting of monks, and sutra reading is bible study by other means. Just as god in heaven can never be logically verified, enlightenment in the head can not be seen in the environment or known to exist.