Ethical Chaos

Yesterday brought the death of the blogger Anna Raccoon. It was not unexpected. She’d been suffering from cancer for some time.

I mentioned her here a few days ago after Dick Puddlecote had reported she was being forbidden even from vaping in the hospice in which she was now confined. Apparently she just went ahead and did it anyway. And now she has completely escaped these nasty, bullying, controlling people forever.

It’s one reason why I’ve become disenchanted with the NHS. Because it’s state-funded rather than private, it means that NHS patients aren’t customers, and they can’t take their custom elsewhere when they’re mistreated, so abuses like the maltreatment of smokers (and now vapers) pass unchecked. What’s to stop them next banning flowers, chocolates, books written by men with names beginning with the letter O, and anything else they don’t like? Answer: nothing.

Two things that I noticed Anna Raccoon got involved with, were firstly the online appeal for £10,000 to free pub landlord Nick Hogan after he permitted smoking in his pub. They raised the money inside about a week or two.

The other thing she got involved with was the strange case of Jimmy Savile, a celebrity DJ, who within months of his death was being denounced as a serial paedophile, and his reputation left in tatters. At the height of the witch hunt, Savile was accused of preying on young girls in an orphanage in the 1960s. But Anna Raccoon had been one of those young girls, and she declared that he had never been there, because she would have known if he had. Despite that intervention, Savile’s reputation now lies in ruins, along with a number of other DJs, who also got caught up in the ugly widening witch hunt.

I hope somebody will write her obituary. She seems to have lived a remarkable life.

The other thing yesterday was a comment from Joe L:

OT: A Missouri state senator, Maria Chappelle-Nadal called for the assassination of President Trump on her Facebook page today. She posted, “I hope Trump is assassinated!”

Even after being called on to resign by a number of her fellow Democrats, she has refused, issuing this statement (emphasis mine):

“There is no way in hell that I’m resigning,” she said. “There are legislators who have cheated on their wives, they have smoked in the Legislature, in the state Capitol. If they have not been asked to resign for those acts, which I do believe that cheating on your wife or your spouse is immoral, I am not resigning for a mistake that I made and that I’m owning up to.”

That’s right, she admits that calling for the assassination of the POTUS was immoral … and then compares it to cheating on one’s wife or smoking in the state Capitol building.

How do these people judge whether something is immoral or not? I increasingly think that they have no morality at all. Or that – as I was suggesting a couple of days ago – their Political Correctness was the consensus opinion that had emerged from a coalition of separate subcultures. It was the average of what everyone – or everyone who counted – thought. And perhaps not even the mathematical average, but the weighted average with greater weight given to the loudest voices.

This might go some way towards explaining why things like transgender bathrooms and gay marriage (way off the radar a few years ago) suddenly emerge as new dogmas of Political Correctness, rapidly adopted by weathervane politicians like Barack Obama and David Cameron.

It might also explain why they rather oddly declare things to be either “acceptable” or “unacceptable” rather than “right” or “wrong”. For the Politically Correct position on any matter is something that is negotiated between the competing factions in the coalitions of subcultural movements, and it is what is found acceptable to all of them, or to most of them – much in the same way that a group of friends will negotiate among themselves whether to eat at an Italian restaurant or a Chinese restaurant or an Indian restaurant, with the final decision being what is acceptable to all of them.

Perhaps it also points to how Political Correctness will die: it will become increasingly chaotic and contradictory, precisely because there is no logic to it, no underlying moral rationality. For what everybody thinks one day is quite likely to be what nobody thinks the next day.

Idle Theory proposes a simple moral rationality: what is good is what increases people’s idle or free time, and what is evil is what decreases it. Or what is good is what makes life easier for people, and what is evil is what makes it harder. The value of anything is measured by the idle time that it produces, or that it consumes. Useful labour-saving tools – e.g. knives, roads, mathematical equations – produce idle time. Luxuries and amusements – e.g. chess games, movies, love affairs – consume it. One of the merits of Idle Theory is that idle time can be measured (with clocks) in ways that abstractions like “utility” or “satisfaction” or “happiness” cannot. And it seems to me that we currently are in as dire need of an ethical rationality as we once were in need of a physical rationality to explain the seemingly-chaotic world around us. In the meantime we must be subjected to the ethical chaos exemplified by the likes of Maria Chappelle-Nadal. For her confusion is also ours.

Also a hat tip to RdM for yesterday drawing my attention to The Socialist Phenomenon by Igor Shafarevich, written in 1980, and with a foreword by Alexander Sozhenitsyn. Shafarevich was a mathematician, and he had undertaken a survey of socialist thinking down the ages, from Plato through Thomas More to Karl Marx, and he had concluded [200]:

It seems to us quite legitimate to conclude that socialism does exist as a unified historical phenomenon. Its basic principles:

Abolition of private property.
Abolition of the family.
Abolition of religion.
Equality, abolition of hierarchies in society.

I spent much of yesterday reading it, and I’ll probably continue reading it today. I couldn’t help thinking that what is going on today is another attempted socialist revolution in which private property is being abolished (pubs are private properties, but banning smoking in them effectively brings them into state ownership), the family is being abolished (children being state-educated, or taken into state care, and homosexuality encouraged), religion is being abolished (Christianity in particular, and being replaced by Islam). What’s novel about the latest revolution is that it’s being conducted top down by the political elites, rather than bottom up as in prior revolutions like the French or Russian revolutions. Everything – including nation states – is being torn up, under the seeming supposition that it can all be re-assembled together in whatever manner the new socialist revolutionaries want. This is wishful thinking. They will simply end up destroying everything. And, if Maria Chappelle-Nadal exemplifies the quality of their thinking, they have no clear ideas anyway of what they might want to do. And it’s most likely not going to be Donald Trump who’s going to wind up being assassinated: it’s going to be her.

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About Frank Davis

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38 Responses to Ethical Chaos

  1. Rose says:

    “That’s right, she admits that calling for the assassination of the POTUS was immoral … and then compares it to cheating on one’s wife or smoking in the state Capitol building.”

    “Godber recollected that he had said in 1962 to Keith Joseph, another of his Conservative ministers, that “we really have to do something about abolishing smoking”
    “Godber replied: “No, but I want to see it reduced to an activity of consenting adults in private.”
    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/obituaries/sir-george-godber-governments-chief-medical-officer-who-helped-to-establish-the-fledgling-national-health-service-1607201.html

    Some people are so easily led, though sometimes it does take a while to filter down.

  2. Frank Davis says:

    OT, close approach (16,258 km) of asteroid 2017 GM on 4 April 2017. It came from outside the Earth’s orbit and moved inside, so passed from night to day. It was spotted as it approached by an observatory in Arizona. It was only 4 metres in diameter.

    This is a very close approach, only 10,000 km above the surface of the Earth. Geostationary satellites orbit at a height of 35,000 km above the surface of the Earth, so it was well inside them.

    On 1 Sep 2017, Asteroid Florence will pass at a distance of 7 million km (18 times the distance from earth to moon). It’s very big: 4.4 km in diameter.

    • nisakiman says:

      Forgive my ignorance here, but would a 4m diameter chunk of rock make it through the atmosphere, or would it burn up? Because a 4m chunk of rock is still pretty big if it lands near you.

  3. Mark Jarratt, Sydney, Australia says:

    Congratulations yet again on another thought provoking post Frank. Beyond belief that Senator Chappelle-Nadal of the politically correct, paid from public funds, attempts to conflate and claim moral equivalence between assassination of frequently blustering windbag Trump and smoking!

    It is also accurate to state the current ‘destroy the joint’ ersatz Marxist ideology offers no improvement of any kind, and that Utopian myopia indicates the proponents are insufficiently acquainted with reality.

  4. wobbler2012 says:

    I think you’ll find most of your readers (including myself) agree with you on most things Frank but not Savile. He was pure evil.

    • “but not Savile. He was pure evil.”
      Was he? AR never found any evidence to suggest it and a lot of what she did discover has not been made public . Even when she found out that Savile’s family had been lying to her for years. The annoying thing is that the same journalists proclaiming him a ‘monster’ etc knew damn well he wasn’t . Who can forget the epic ‘Savile made rings from eyeballs of the dead’ headlines…

    • Frank Davis says:

      I think that what AR revealed about her orphanage brought into question allegations by girls who were supposedly there, and thereby brought into question all other allegations. As a result I keep an open mind about Savile. I don’t know anything about him for certain.

  5. ” What’s to stop them next banning flowers, chocolates, books written by men “
    Actually in the hospice-from-hell where AR was confined , every M&S sandwich her husband brought her in, every slice of cake sourced externally, had to be examined and certified. So the next step is not far off..

    And here is nothing to stop them from banning whatever they like. Certainly a number (all? most?) hospitals these days ban flowers on ‘hygiene’ grounds.

    • nisakiman says:

      It would be interesting to compare outcomes (medical advances excepted) of hospital stays from the ’50s, when it was a commonsense regime which allowed flowers, smoking, gifts of any sort etc, and the outcomes today, where seemingly half the people who have to stay in hospital end up with MRSA.

      • I saw a photo from 50’s USA where there was actually a ‘cigarette girl’ -with a tray an’ all what went round the wards like in them ‘Cinema’ things my Ol’ Dad would tell me about.

        • nisakiman says:

          Nice! I remember going to visit people in hospital and there being an ashtray on the side table for the smoking patients and their visitors. I think you had to hobble down to the shop in the foyer to buy any cigs, though. But then, back in the ’50s, the Americans had style. Just look at their cars.

        • looking at the uniforms it might not have been the US but somewhere in the Antipodeans?

  6. waltc says:

    Was her real name Raccoon or was that a blog name? I ask bec in line w something over at Snowden’s, I do intend to write (or E if possible) a blistering letter to her hospice tormentors

  7. A slight ‘wrong’ here Frank as the ‘Raccoon’ did not set up the fund to get Nick out of prison, rather, she & Old Holborn colluded to steal the whole thing from the person who did actually set about trying gain Nicks release. To one of the two it was a monumentalego boost and to the other it was an opportunity to flex the legal muscle to keep the originator down! The truth will always out Frank.

    • Frank Davis says:

      ??

      I have the vague memory that somebody else (F2C?) began to organise an online appeal for Nick Hogan, but Anna Raccoon and Old Holborn took over doing it, and were very successful about it, because both were very well known bloggers who were much better placed to promote an online appeal. And they did in fact raise £10,000 very quickly. From memory both said they’d never do it again, because it had caused them too much grief.

    • Justice4smokers sounds rather like someone whom OH, AR and Simon had to slap down on various occasions. OH made very clear that F2C contributed not one penny to the fund.

  8. Richard says:

    Sorry to hear about Anna’s death. I read her posts about Savile and it was a wake-up call for me when I realised that there was nothing but hearsay against him. She was a good writer too.
    Just to be pedantic, hoping that a bad thing happens to the POTUS isn’t the same as calling for the event. It’s a sign of a vicious personality, but not illegal. Unless it’s considered “hate speech” but that doesn’t seem to apply to white heterosexual rich men.

    • Joe L. says:

      Just to be pedantic, hoping that a bad thing happens to the POTUS isn’t the same as calling for the event.

      However, Chappelle-Nadal isn’t just hoping for “a bad thing” to happen to the POTUS (e.g., a nasty fall, or even an accidental death), she’s hoping for his assassination, which is premeditated murder. So while she may not be directly asking people to kill, she is at the very least condoning the murder of someone simply because she disagrees with his ideals, and is also providing encouragement to those who may already be inclined to attempt it themselves.

      It’s a sign of a vicious personality, but not illegal.

      Neither myself nor Frank claimed her words are illegal. This isn’t a question of legality, it’s a question of ethics, morals and values. I don’t think she should be arrested; I think she should resign her position as a public representative.

      However, since you brought up legality, here’s food for thought: Publicly hoping for the assassination of the POTUS is not illegal. Adultery is not illegal in Missouri. However, under current laws, smoking in the Missouri state Capitol building (a workplace) is illegal. Of the three aforementioned activities, the only one that has no chance of causing neither physical nor emotional harm to others is the only one that is punishable by law.

  9. “I suggest that you contact the 15-20 members” -J4S
    I post-edited my original comment to reflect that.
    “sue me if you want but it won’t get you anywhere!’
    I’m afraid if she genuinely said that to the instigator then that would, in my eyes, seriously damage any creditability the instigator might have had. In other words the instigator’s claims were so ludicrous as to make the prospect of being sued (something, as a lawyer, she took very very seriously btw) laughable. Every lawyer knows the one thing, the one remark, you never want read out in court is the sentence ‘sue and be damned’ or ‘ it won’t get you anywhere’.
    As to OH, all I know about him is that he has suffered grievously at the hands of some of the nastiest trolls around and that AR always said of him that he has ‘ a weapons grade ego but is a true friend’. Certainly he stood by her and did everything he could to help her in her final days, for which I will forever be grateful to the man.

    • I noted your edit and thank you for such ‘BD’ but as for the rest of it then I’m afraid that you will have to think whatever you want to think but I know the truth of what was said on the telephone and/or emails over that horrible time. What is gone is gone and the truth is out so whoever wishes to believe can do and those that don’t can choose not to – the point was that the smoking community (and friends) ensured Nick’s release at the earliest opportunity from a totally unjust & contrived prison sentence.

      • release at the earliest opportunity
        To go back to Frank’s comment about ‘grief’ and your reply that it was self induced-I have a feeling (because I only got to know AR way after the NH affair) that any ‘grief’ she might have spoken of receiving about it all was mainly centred around that very point. Reading back through various comments it seems there was a vocal, trollish, element of conspiracy whackjobs who seemed convinced that AR & OH had deliberately delayed payment of the fine at the behest of their Lizard Men masters …or something . So I am pleased you noted that it was ‘at the earliest’.

        BTW I went and checked the J4S website (I used to go there regularly -infact I was directed to it originally by Smoking Hot at the same time, uncannily enough, as i started drinking in the Raccoon Arms to whom SH also introduced me- but not recently). Am I right in thinking that the site hasn’t been updated in a year or is there a new site?

        • Hi ‘BD’, the only delay experienced in the release of the funds for payment (cash) for the release of NH was by PayPal themse4lves as they considered that such a large sum of money must have been drug money or some such illegal activity (laughable really as it was only £10K yet they deal in £millions every day!) When they finally read the story & realised the cause of the sudden influx of ‘donations’ they reluctantly agreed to release the funds for OH to collect. Simon C was then drafted in as the ‘media exposure’ for the grand release! On that point, OH did a great job getting PayPal to understand the situation when they did else NH would have been incarcerated for 4 maybe 5 days longer than necessary instead of the 2 days thanks to PayPal.
          And, as for Justice4Smokers, do not be fooled, lack of updates do not mean lack of industry my friend. In fact they are very much in dispute/debate with a mental health facility that cannot understand that a simple cigarette is a calming factor for an enraged patient – all because of their idiotic No Smoking rules. They seem to think that the slightest wisp of SHS will kill off the entire hospital site!

        • “In fact they are very much in dispute/debate with a mental health facility that cannot understand that a simple cigarette is a calming factor for an enraged patient “
          Then I wish them, J4S, all power to their elbows. The current ‘policy’ regarding mental health patients is an obscenity , nay is just pure EVIL, and a cause very close to my own heart -being the fulltime carer of a paranoid psychotic (it is fortunate for once that she is non-smoker, but the VERBOT will mean visiting her, at her next incarceration, more stressful than it need be…the last time she was committed i wasn’t even allowed to smoke whilst walking with her in the hospital grounds/park- I still did of course).

  10. Frank Davis says:

    Anna Raccoon 1973, smoking Camels

  11. dear freinds, i will miss anna racoon as well. she was an inspiration to myself as frank harley and dick puddlecote and velvet glove iron fist, are. and i do so hope and pray those spiteful nannies at the hospice she was at hang their heads in shame. oh yes one last thing, the troll whom harrassed ms. racoon will be haunted as i have a good notion how GOD has seen who and what he really is.and dioclese and oh and old granddad and blocked dwarf and anyone else who liked anna racoon i salute you.i am only a wee pup who reads each and evey one of you daily. i respect you. as i am in a twelve step program i cannot lift a bottle of beer for to toast her memory but i will drink a coca-cola to her. may she shine bright forever. raymond barfoot

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