05 January 2014

The power of the brains of the BDS lobby strike again...or not, possibly

Yet again, I am reduced to stunned silence and amazement by the astounding command of intellectual niceties by the BDS brainiacs (not really: irony alert). In today's Algemeiner, there is an article noting the election of NYU Social and Cultural Analysis Prof Lisa Duggan as head of the American Studies Association. She informed the NY Daily Post that she supports the boycott of Israel.

Now here's a thing: according to the article, New York State Senate Co-leader Jeffrey Klein (D-Bronx) and Assemblyman Dov Hikind (D-Brooklyn) introduced legislation this week to withdraw state funding from any New York college that boycotts Israel, according to the New York Daily News. This means that, should the bill become State law, then her College (it might go down to the Departmental level) risks losing funding, possibly quite a chunk of funding. Further "“Our state is under no obligation to support institutionalized discrimination — against Israel or anyone else,” Klein told the Daily News."

The real intellectual mastery of meaning comes here, when "NYU spokesman John Beckman, questioned its approach as an assault on freedoms. Beckman told the Daily News that while the university opposes the boycott, it views the Klein-Hikind bill as a potential attack on academic freedom, the newspaper reported."

Umm...now let me get this right: it's an attack on my academic freedom when you stop me attacking someone else's academic freedom. Not, note (before someone raises this point) stopping me attacking their ideas or arguments or conclusions, but stopping me stopping them from having any academic freedom in the first place is an attack on my academic freedom.

Surely, the only possible response is either huh?! or the Monty Pythonesque "my brain hurts". This threat to withdraw funding is exactly what I have been saying faces the UK's UCU should it get its heart's desire and get an active boycott of Israeli universities.

By Brian Goldfarb.


SnoopyTheGoon said...

Ha! Good one Brian! Well spotted.

Intellectual niceties have never been the strong point of the BDS-ers. According to them, as long as Israel is hurt, it doesn't matter who else gets hurt along the way: Palestinians, other Israelis or even themselves.

So far at least 100 universities have opposed the ASA boycott so it looks like our side has won anyway.