"Ich bin ein Berliner."
JFK's words (which actually mean "I am a doughnut", but never mind) have been popular since the latest terrorist atrocity - as of course they inevitably would. We all know well enough, by now, the standard operational procedure that all right-thinking people adopt whenever someone from the Religion of Peace commits another mass murder.
First, the snappy hashtag phrase of solidarity: #jesuischarlie #prayfororlando #ichbineinberliner
Then the decorating of your Facebook/Twitter profile in the colours of the flag of the latest victim country. So: red, gold, and black are this month's red, white, and blue.
Then the candlelit vigils.
Then the hipster playing "Imagine" on a wonky piano in an impromptu and entirely unexpected gesture near the scene of the atrocity.
Then the visit by politicians vowing that the people will remain defiant in the face of this outrage.
Then the good news story about some Muslims who were brave and/or nice - usually members of the persecuted Ahmadi branch of Islam - which proves that it is a Religion of Peace really.
Then the caravan of grief moves on. Till the next atrocity. And so on and so on ad infinitum.
We've all noticed this stuff, many times over. And most of us find it properly sick-making. But there's one other element in the standard left-liberal playbook response to these terrorist atrocities which, I think, hasn't been widely noted yet. And I think it should be because it's as least as disgusting and lame and feeble and hypocritical and dishonest and cowardly and succour-to-the-enemy-giving as any of the responses I've listed above.
I'm talking about the Blame Nigel Farage response.
We saw a perfect example of this in the immediate aftermath of the Berlin atrocity earlier this week when the chattering classes on social media very quickly made up their hive mind who the guilty party was in the Christmas market massacre-by-truck.
Was it, perhaps, the ISIS-inspired terrorist who killed a Polish truck driver, commandeered his vehicle, drove to a crowded Christmas market in the centre of Berlin, turned off the headlights and then accelerated into the crowd of men, women, and children, killing at least a dozen and maiming many more?
Of course not!
The very worst, most evil and culpable person in the world the day after the Berlin massacre was - in the view of progressive types on Twitter and on the BBC and in The Guardian - Nigel Farage.
But what could Nigel Farage possibly have done wrong that was worse than killing lots of people going about their shopping in a Christmas market in Germany?
Well, he'd done the terrible thing of saying this in a tweet:
Terrible news from Berlin but no surprise. Events like these will be the Merkel legacy.
You might be wondering what the problem is here. Me too. I think it's perfectly arguable, indeed entirely reasonable, to suggest that Angela Merkel's bizarre experiment to invite over a million "refugees" of mostly Muslim extraction into her country was primarily responsible for this terrorist attack. Thinking this doesn't make you a bad person or an "Islamophobe". It's a simple numbers game: the more Muslims you invite in the greater the likelihood that among them will be unfriendly ones bent on doing great harm.
But to appreciate this basic, obvious truth is to think clearly and logically - which is not something the liberal-left likes to do. What it much prefers to engage in is emotive demagoguery, dubious moral equivalence and cynical smearing of the type we see expressed in this response to Farage's tweet by a left-wing activist called Brendan Cox.
@Nigel_Farage blaming politicians for the actions of extremists? That's a slippery slope Nigel.
Cox is keen to promote the idea that extremists from the "far right" are just as big a threat as "Islamist" ones.
On the day after the massacre, he tweeted:
Far right &Islamist extremists share same hate driven psychology, intolerance towards difference& tendency to violence. We must defeat both
Well, it's a point of view, certainly. But if you ask me it's a crass, ignorant, and irresponsible one. What on earth does the "far right" have to do with a mass murder of innocent shoppers committed by a follower of Islamic State? And how does the comparison add anything useful to the debate? It doesn't: it does the exact opposite. It's a classic piece of liberal-left "whataboutery", of intellectual evasion, of progressive smearing.
"Right wing extremists are just as big a problem as Islamist terrorists," it seeks to tell us.
And: "Let's not seek to point the finger of blame at any ideology in particular."
And: "But do let's blame the kind of people who think mass immigration is a bad thing because their 'intolerance towards difference' is what's really causing all this violence."
So I'm really not surprised that Nigel Farage chose to take Cox to task on LBC radio.
Hours after the Twitter exchange between the two, Mr Farage went on LBC radio and said: "Well, of course, he would know more about extremists than me, Mr Cox, he backs organisations like Hope Not Hate, who masquerade as being lovely and peaceful but actually pursue violent and very undemocratic means."
What does surprise me - though it shouldn't: I've seen often enough how these people roll - was the speed with which the news cycle shifted its attention. One minute we were being invited - quite properly - to focus on the latest appalling atrocity committed in the name of the Religion of Peace. The next - ooh look, a dickie bird! - everyone from the BBC and The Guardian, to various rentaquote Labour MPs, plus the usual suspects on Twitter had decided that the real story of the day was how disgusting and culpable people on the right were, especially Nigel Farage.
MP Tracy Brabin, who replaced Mrs Cox in her Batley and Spen constituency, said: "Beggars belief... A new low for Farage."
Chris Bryant, the Rhondda MP and former shadow Commons leader, said: "The sheer nastiness of Farage sometimes takes my breath away."
Chesterfield MP Toby Perkins added: "When your entire career has been built on hate, not hope, it perhaps shouldn't shock me, but Farage still sinks lower than I'd have believed."
Jess Phillips, MP for Birmingham Yardley, wrote on Twitter: "I hope Farage never ever feels the pain we feel about Jo, because unlike him I am not a monster."
Again, it's worth asking: what had Nigel Farage done or said wrong to justify phrases like "sheer nastiness" and "monster"? And if Nigel Farage is a "monster", what term would you use for the Tunisian guy who murdered that Polish truck driver and then deliberately ploughed the vehicle into a Christmas market full of kids?
I think we need to be absolutely clear here: these people have no claim whatsoever to the moral high ground. They are stupid, wrong, and evil.
In December 2016, as throughout this year and last and the one before, innocents have been butchered by a merciless creed which deliberately sets out to kill and maim by whatever means. And instead of facing up to this threat and asking important questions like "how did this come about?" and "how can we deal with it?", all these left-wing virtue-signallers in the Labour party, at The Guardian, at the BBC, and on Twitter want to do is duck the issue by pointing in the direction of their favourite bugbear "the far right" instead.
Here is Owen Jones playing the game in The Guardian:
No more pussyfooting around: Nigel Farage and his associates have poisoned our country’s political culture, and it’s time to push back. Their offensive – in every sense of the word – has been so swift, so devastating, that we risk normalising it.
Here is the left-wing comic Mark Steel trying it on in the Independent with some satire which works really well if you're a doctrinaire left-winger and Hope Not Hate fan who believes Brexit was a disaster and that what Europe needs right now is more unchecked immigration, from the Middle East and North Africa especially.
What has fuelled their moral indignation is the fact that Brendan Cox is the widower of Jo Cox, the MP who was murdered in the streets during the EU referendum campaign by a loner with neo-Nazi sympathies called Thomas Mair.
I have never spoken to, read, or met anyone on the Brexit side of the argument who was any less appalled by Jo Cox's murder than people on the Remain side were. Yet ever since her senseless death at the hands of a vile individual, elements in the Remain camp have sought to pin her murder on the "rhetoric" used by the Brexit camp, especially by people like Nigel Farage.
(This is a common trope of the regressive left - and has been since at least the 2011 shooting of Arizona Democrat politician Gabrielle Giffords, which the liberal media also did its best to blame on right-wing rhetoric rather than on a sad, confused, angry nut-job.)
Probably the most egregious example of this was a piece by David Aaronovitch in The Times, which I wrote about under the headline "Aaronovitch: Brexit campaigners kinda, sorta killed Jo Cox MP"
Few people have pushed this notion more assiduously than Brendan Cox himself - who donated a large chunk of the memorial fund raised in Jo Cox's honour to the dubious charity Hope Not Hate, whose speciality is to promulgate this same misleading line - that the "far right" is an equivalent threat to fundamentalist Islam.
No doubt in doing so Brendan Cox believes he is honouring his wife's memory.
The problem is that the "good work" Brendan Cox believes his wife was doing before she died is anathema to over half the country - and indeed to millions of people in Europe whose countries have been swamped by the kind of mass immigration that the Coxes believed would be good for them.
That's why the Remainers lost the referendum: because, contrary to the assertions of campaigners like Jo and Brendan Cox, British people had had quite enough of unchecked immigration and could not see the benefits of remaining shackled to a sclerotic, anti-democratic, supra-national bureaucracy within the European Union.
However, the response of the losing Remainers (the 48 per cent) has not been to accept with good grace the democratic will expressed by the Brexiteers (the 52 per cent). Rather it has been to fight, fight, fight the result with whatever means, fair or foul, come to hand and to try to ensure that Brexit never happens.
Among the fouler means the Remoaners have sought to use to get their way is to try to blacken the motives and character of anyone who voted Brexit, while claiming for themselves the moral high ground as ordinary decent people who represent the "British values" of tolerance and fairness and who are appalled by the supposed outbreak of post-Brexit "hate crimes" in a country they claim not to recognise anymore.
It goes without saying that this is pure propaganda based on the flimsiest of evidence, most of it anecdotal or simply made up.
But it's a line that has caught the imaginations of the losing Remain camp and their friends in the media, not least thanks to Brendan Cox himself.
Whatever phrase you use to describe Cox's activities since
his wife's murder, "maintaining a dignified silence" wouldn't be one of them. This was especially noticeable in the tense days before the referendum vote, when he invoked his late wife's memory to promote this popular Remain trope: that the language being used by the Brexit camp was inflammatory and dangerous and somehow unBritish.
"I think she was very worried that the language was coarsening, that people were being driven to take more extreme positions, that people didn’t work with each other as individuals and on issues, it was all much too tribal and unthinking," Mr Cox said.
"She was particularly worried - we talked about this regularly - about the direction, not just in the UK but globally, the direction of politics at the moment, particularly around creating division and playing on people’s worst fears rather than their best instincts."
He has continued to promote this view ever since - taking advantage of the significantly higher media profile which he gained as a result of his wife's death and finding a ready audience at parti-pris, pro-Remain media organisations like the BBC for his left-leaning, pro-immigration, anti-Brexit opinions. This Christmas he has been given still more space to promote his views by Channel 4 which has chosen him to broadcast their Alternative Christmas Message.
Is there, perhaps, some special rule whereby if you have been tragically widowed, you get a free pass to spout unchallenged whatever views you like in public - even if the cause you are supporting is potentially very dangerous and certainly very offensive to well over half the population?
Brendan Cox's many admirers in the Remain camp - on the regressive left and in Hope Not Hate most especially - would seem to think so.
I got a small taste of this myself when, at the height of the Farage/Cox spat, I tweeted:
"When are we allowed to say that Brendan Cox is a total arse?"
There are worse insults in the English lexicon than calling someone a "total arse" - as I was reminded by the large number of responses I got from Hope Not Hate virtue-signallers telling me as I was a "c***". My view on this remains as it was when I tweeted it: that if you're going to express suspect opinions in the public arena, then you should expect to be called on them, no matter how tragic your personal circumstances. Of course, Cox deserves sympathy as a widower; this does not, however, give him carte blanche to promulgate - uncriticised - the kind of political viewpoint which, unfortunately, goes a long way towards explaining the wave of terrorism we are experiencing in Europe today.
For about 24 hours, I experienced what Nigel Farage has to put up with pretty much every day of his life - and has done for the last 25 years. Wave after wave of self-righteous lefties pouring vitriol, wishing death on me, calling me the worst names they could think of in their limited imaginations.
I'm perfectly OK with the insults. I'm used to it. It's a technique popular with the regressive left known as "point and shriek" and "isolate and swarm". The purpose - as Vox Day explains in this SJW attack survival guide - is to frighten you, isolate you, and silence you. And the key thing is to recognise it for what it is and not be upset by it - and definitely not apologise.
But what I cannot tolerate or forgive - and nor should you - is when these scum-sucking regressive types think they have the right to judge and to take the moral high ground.
Farage was absolutely right when he said in that tweet that the massacre in Berlin was a direct result of the Merkel legacy.
John R Bradley puts it well in the Mail:
The undeniable reality is that Europe’s breathtakingly reckless open-door immigration policy has provided a perfect cover for Islamic State to further its bloody, anti-Christian agenda.
Undeniable and real it may be - but the regressive left shows, as yet, absolutely no sign of accepting it or engaging with it.
This is why I have a very special Christmas message to all those people who attacked Nigel Farage for telling the truth about the Berlin massacre, and to all those who called me a "c***" for being rude about Brendan Cox.
You are the reason Donald Trump won the US Presidential election; you are the reason 17.4 million people voted for Brexit; you are the reason the European Union is collapsing. You are hateful, bigoted and - for all your hypocritical pretences to the contrary - fascistic.
You are an intellectually spavined, moronic, self-righteous and disgusting losers who have been shown by the events of 2016 to be on the wrong side of history. There is nothing noble or worthy or decent about your ranting rage: it is the fury of a vampire stuck with a stake, realising as he shrieks his last that finally the good guys have ended his reign of terror.
I leave you, as a treat, with the delicious words of Owen Jones in the Guardian - as demented a case of psychological projection as it has ever been my amused privilege to witness.
We face a great danger, and not even those who will suffer because of it have realised just how grave it is. Intolerance and hatred have been legitimised across the western world. Dissent is becoming treason. That is bad enough. But there are other violent extremists who are being both radicalised and legitimised across the west. If we don’t take a stand now, new dark chapters are soon to arrive.
No, Owen, my fluffy little ephebe. It's not my side that is guilty of any of that. It's your side that has been doing this for decades - closing down free speech, demeaning people who dare to speak out, promoting hatred and violence while pretending to preach tolerance (so long as it's tolerance of things you think it's OK to tolerate).
You are unconscionable scum. Your philosophy has been responsible for causing untold misery across the world for over a century. The idea that any of you are able to take the moral high ground on anything is as risible as your threadbare arguments.
Happy New Year to all Brexiteers.Still, the great thing is that you guys finally lost in 2016. Happy 2017 everyone - it can only get better from here on in.