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Sunday, July 15, 2007


Dangle a wee bit of bait and watch the pseudo wannabe left-wingers bite! The more arrogant they are the more likely they are to put on a show for you as they tug on the bait. Those that are on the right but call themselves ‘left’ are the ultimate liars and deceivers.

Hats off to Jenny Hume’s husband, Ian MacDougall, who, while not quite as arrogant, nor even as bright, as his wife, did nonetheless dash to defend her honour at Webdiary. Ian MacDougall’s piece at Webdiary did, however, demonstrate one thing; that the charge I had levelled at his wife needed to be responded to. Only the guilty respond with anger to an accusation – the innocent ignore it.

But this isn’t about Ian MacDougall, it’s about Jenny Hume; perhaps I’ll catch up with Ian MacDougall another time.

Margo Kingston claims that her friend Jenny Hume is left of centre. I argued that she was nowhere near the left and that her attitude and some of her views demonstrated otherwise. To show this I invited Webdiarists to do an online political ‘self-test’ designed to show where individuals are on the political spectrum. The test itself was of no particular merit and its accuracy has not, a far as I’m aware, been qualified. All that, however, was incidental in this case because the prime idea of introducing the test was to see if Jenny Hume would respond.

She did of course. It was a challenge she couldn’t resist. This was her response:

“Well I am always curious to know where I stand on these sorts of scales and am not afraid to have a go. How accurate they are is another matter and my political leanings have changed considerably over my lifetime and could do so again. Those who never change their mind on anything must live in a very rigid mental cage.
When one does not have to reveal what the scale result is one can be totally honest with oneself, so I was. And yes, it was a bit of a surprise.
But for what it is worth it tells me I am -6.63 on the left/right axis and on the A/L axis -0.56 on the A/L axis.
I would have thought I was more to the centre on the L/R axis, but there you go. Is it a reliable measure? Who knows? I found a few questions a bit obscure as to what was meant so had to take a punt on those. But on the face of it, it looks like the country party would not take me back.
Incidentally, you take my remarks about class far too seriously. I happen to value the poor settler side of the family the most, by a British mile.
But BTW: You refer to Al Quaeda as a myth. Are you saying there is no such organization, that there are no and never have been any training camps run by such an organization for the purpose of committing terrorist acts, and no such acts have been perpetrated by any such organization? Now don't post me a long list of links as I do not have time to read them. Just tell me, briefly what you mean by Al Quaeda, the myth. I am sure you can summarize the conclusions you have reached in that regard.

I then wrote this in reply:

“Jenny, the ‘Political Compass’ test is, in the way that I used it at least, more about psychology than it is about accurately measuring peoples position on the political spectrum.
I should explain.
I’ve used this test before to subliminally measure people’s psychological reaction. I won’t bore you with how it’s used in an experimental setting but I’m happy to explain how and why I used it in this instance. It needs to be done in a group setting and in this case the group was Webdiarists. It also needs a target; in this case it was you. You were the obvious target both because of our recent vehement debates and the fact that I had already made an assessment of your political position – one which Margo, presumably on your behalf or to your satisfaction, denied. It was at this point that I thought of the political compass test.
You see Jenny; I knew that, for you, the test would be a challenge from me to you. (For other Webdiarists doing the test it would just be a personal challenge out of idle curiosity.) Historically you’ve always responded to me when challenged; you’re the sort of person that likes to have the last word, so you couldn’t resist this challenge. The reason why you couldn’t resist is because you needed to prove me wrong. There was two ways you could have done that. First, you could have said words to the effect that it is ‘a silly boring piddly little test that I couldn’t be bothered with’ or some such, or you would have done the test. Either way I would have succeeded in getting a reaction from you. You needed to respond to my challenge in order to prove me wrong either by showing that you wouldn’t lower yourself by doing such a test or by doing as you did, actually doing the test. But not only did you do the test but – and this is the really important bit – you couldn’t resist mentioning the result.
I don’t know how many other Webdiarists did the test; it’s not really important, but what is important is that you did, and, furthermore, you just had to mention the result. You needed to prove me wrong. No one else even said they did the test and certainly no one else gave their score – only you.
The problem with disclosing your score is that it’s unverifiable. This is where your deceit comes in. You wanted so desperately to prove me wrong that you almost ‘willed’ yourself if not deliberately then at least subconsciously to do the test in a way that would provide an answer that would prove me wrong. In a way you verified that because you actually admitted pondering over a few questions claiming that they were a bit obscure. (Frankly, I don’t believe for one moment that a person of your intelligence would have found any of the questions ‘obscure’.) You see Jenny, your psychological profile, based on reading your work here on Webdiary, doesn’t at all fit the political profile that you claim. There are little things that you say – and sometimes don’t say – which provide clues as to your psychological profile.
I’ll give you two examples. In the post regarding your queries about my views on al Qaeda you wrote: “Now don't post me a long list of links as I do not have time to read them.” This tells me a great deal about you. You hadn’t given a thought to the idea that other readers might like to have links even if you don’t. It demonstrates self-centredness and shows lack of consideration for others, in a word, selfishness, all traits – among many others that you have displayed in your writings – that are not associated with the position you have located yourself on in the Political Compass test.
In the same post you wrote in the first paragraph: “…my political leanings have changed considerably over my lifetime and could do so again. Those who never change their mind on anything must live in a very rigid mental cage.” In the first part it’s all about you and in the second part it’s all about what you think of other people relative to you. It indicates judgemental arrogance and self importance, in a word; conceit, neither of which, again, are traits that would place you where you would like to think you are on the political spectrum. And then there is always the right-wing’s classic favourite last resort in debate; ‘I don’t want to debate with you any more’, followed up in your case by ‘over and out’, when it all gets too hard or frustrating for you. And have you noticed it always ends that way with people you are debating with who really are on the left.
Interesting is it not!
Try the test again only this time don’t tell us the result.”

Needless to say, this post wasn’t published.

But what makes Jenny Hume’s remarks deceitful is the way she delivers what she says is opinion as ‘fact’ without any attempt whatsoever at substantiation. Example:

“I suspect most Australians anyway do not subscribe to the view here that Australia and the US is in Iraq deliberately murdering for oil. Most are able to see that the deaths in Iraq are a direct consequence of internal hatreds and power struggles between the Sunnis, dispossessed of their brutal power, and the Shia’s who are determined not to be the oppressed ever again.”

This is a most subtle form of deceit that borders on lying and is a typical trait of the extreme right-wing. She says to start with ‘I suspect’ using her well-known conceit as the qualifier for what she is about to say as being a given, and then says ‘most Australians anyway’ without any qualification at all; not even a link to any survey to substantiate her suspicion. She goes on to say: ‘Most are able to see that the deaths in Iraq are a direct consequence of internal hatreds and power struggles between the Sunnis, dispossessed of their brutal power, and the Shia’s who are determined not to be the oppressed ever again.’ This again is a totally unsubstantiated remark delivered as fact. The reality is that most Australians are only able to form an opinion (and that’s assuming that they actually are interested enough to want to have an opinion anyway) based on what the Western mainstream media has told which means, of course, that it remains only an opinion, one that is not based in any way at all on substantiated fact. The fact is; most Australians do not have a clue about what is going on in Iraq nor, indeed, do they have any interest. Jenny Hume knows that.

To sum up, it is Jenny Hume’s calculated and deliberated deceit that makes her a liar. To claim to be on the left of politics when she demonstrates all the traits of being on the right and up there with the likes of Pauline Hanson, is a claim that is a deliberate lie.

And, of course, having an interest in animal rights does not a left-winger make – even Hitler had an interest in animal rights.


Jacob said...

Lest I be accused of telling tales out of school or something, Damian, I said the following over at Harry's (or David's, whatever you prefer):

I want to say something to Damian but I can hear the refrain already: "You can spin it any way you want, Stam, etc. etc. etc." So why bother??

The Lataan Test will flush them out every time. Whether they take the test or not. Damian's devastatingly clever inquisitorial method is infallible.

Damian Lataan said...

I wouldn't dream of saying a thing like that Jacob!

Damian Lataan said...

But wait for the next exciting episode.

Jacob said...

Damian, your 'test' is the intellectual equivalent of chucking her in the pond to see if she floats. Get a grip.

Damian Lataan said...

She won't float but she'll need a good grip of the ducking chair. (I should remind you Jacob that the 'inquisition' analogy is yours; not mine.) As I say, wait for the next exciting episode!

Kurt said...

Damian, this post says more about you than it does Jenny.

Damian Lataan said...

Kurt, I really couldn't care less about what people think of me. I'm just the messenger exposing the liars and deceivers.