Thursday, January 04, 2007

The Seven Deadliest Sins I Committed in 2006

I set them out in my Chronicles column this week.

Why, I keep getting asked, have I suddenly decided to go after the left? Never mind that nothing sudden has happened here, and never mind whether it’s really the “left” I’ve been going after. I reckon I owe everybody an explanation.

That's what I attempt.

So, in hindsight, is there anything in those seven columns I wish I’d written differently?

I deeply regret to say, no. Not one dang word.


Blogger double-plus-ungood said...

One should, of course, always hold one's own to a higher standard, and I for one would not fault you for that. But it should be remembered that every political movement has its own loons, crackpots, and nutcases. This will never change, and they will always be there to criticize, and they should certainly be noted. But it shouldn't be assumed that they are representative.

At any rate, if I may, I absolve you from your sins in the name of the Socialist International, and of the NDP, and of the true spirit of warmest solidarity.

5:26 PM  
Blogger tglavin said...

"It shouldn't be assumed. . ."

No, it shouldn't. No indeed.

I've been meaning to say, besides, that I hope your kid's doing fine. That must have been traumatic all round, buddy.


5:57 PM  
Blogger Stephen said...

I was going to make roughly the same point as double-plus-ungood, that it is important to avoid lumping fringe nutcases in with the larger progressive movements, and that includes the anti-war left. I also strongly disagree with you on the apartheid wall.

I completely agree with you on 9/11 conspiracy theorists, though, and am glad to have met Clemente Apak at human rights functions.

6:40 PM  
Blogger tglavin said...


The "fringe nutcases" I've reported on in the anti-war left hold key organizational and staff positions on the anti-war left, so, unfortunately, they're not just on the "fringe" of it. See my Tyee piece on the subject especially. And I don't know that I've expressed an opinion on the "apartheid wall" (so I don't know what you're disagreeing with) except to report the fact that it isn't a wall, and to report the facts as to why it was built, which have nothing to do with what any reasonable person would call "apartheid."



8:29 PM  
Blogger Stephen said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

9:43 PM  
Blogger Stephen said...

When I talk about the anti-war left, I am talking not only about people in key positions, as you say, but rank and file members, volunteers, people who merely attend anti-war events. I have problems with some of the elites in the anti-war movement myself, how they seem to have been unduly influenced by certain intersts. That said, it is unfair, as double-plus-ungood says, to suggest that they are representative of the anti-war movement.

Well, I disagree with you that it's not an apartheid wall. I would also say that I have seen several pictures of the wall, and it sure looks like concrete to me. Maybe there are wire sections. I don't know, maybe they ran out of money for a good solid concrete wall from end to end.

9:50 PM  
Blogger tglavin said...


Just fyi: Those pictures you saw?


The Washington Post says it is "a massive complex of walls, fences and trenches," and also "fences, walls, concertina wire and patrol roads." The Israel Virtual Library notes: "Only a tiny fraction of the total length of the barrier (less than 3% or about 10 miles) is actually a 30 foot high concrete wall, and that is being built in three areas where it will prevent Palestinian snipers. . . from shooting at cars" And Wikipedia: "Most of the barrier (over 95% of total length) consists of a wire fence with an exclusion area on each side, often including an anti-vehicle trench, and averaging approximately 60 m in width. Some sections (less than 5% of total length) are constructed as a wall made up of concrete slabs up to 8 m in height and 3 m in width."

What is it you disagree with again?

10:53 PM  
Blogger Stephen said...

It wasn't my intention to delve into this issue on this thread, but if you insist...

OK, lets drop the semantics. I wish I hadn't split hairs in the first place with you on this because Palestinians who are kept behind it probably don't really care what word you use for it.

Some of it is concrete. Some of it is barbed wire. In the end, you can call it a fence or you can call it a wall. All of it is impassible. As far as I am concerned, none of it is justifyable. And, as the International Court of Justice in the Hague rightly determined, it is illegal under international law.

1:01 AM  
Blogger double-plus-ungood said...

I've been meaning to say, besides, that I hope your kid's doing fine. That must have been traumatic all round, buddy.

Thanks Terry, I appreciate that. He's seems to be mostly recovered now except for some ongoing leg pain. Kid must be made of rubber or something.

Regarding the wall, my own opinion is that the Israelis have every right to build whatever wall they want on their land to ensure their security. The problem is where they've put portions of it. They seem to have snagged some extra land in the process, which creates some confusion as to whether the purpose is security or annexation, or both.

10:14 PM  

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