Monday, April 28, 2008

A region that loves cosmetic surgery

So symptomatic of a region in sociocultural turmoil, in my opinion.

It's not uncommon to hear voices calling for bans on all kinds of tools that make the world so modern, from TV and satellite TV to mobile phones and the Internet.

They know not what they want, because they are going through a crazy transition (a la Emmanuel Todd i.e. increasing literacy and increasingly--or is that 'decreasingly'--lower birth rates cause people to become 'modern').

But it's much easier for these people to accept cosmetic surgery because it plays with the concept of beauty and affects self-esteem.

I love the way human weaknesses and the capacity for hypocrisy are so magnified as they are in the Middle East.

One second you're watching Arab female pop stars half-naked with their Western porno-style make-up, the next second you switch to the next channel to see some bearded religious man blast non-Moslems for being so effete and decadent.


  1. right, you never see such contradictions in the western world.

  2. If this is irony, it ain't working.

  3. Anonymous4:53 AM

    Obviously you are not getting the point. The West is never as self-righteous as the Arabs and Iranians are about certain things.

    Oh well, maybe you have to live here to understand.

  4. Who is 'the West'? Does it include Pat Robertson? The Ku Klux Klan? How about those abortion clinic bombers? The Rev Ian Paisley? Carmelite nuns? Does it include the Viking Jihadists? Avigdor Lieberman? Jean Marie Le Pen? Billy Graham? Jim Bakker?

    Where is this 'West' without hypocrisy, sanctimony, intolerance, and much worse besides?

  5. I sense a crisis in the qlipoth motto.

  6. maybe qlipoth you have an expectation of a certain kind of coherence from one media, and from another you expect competitive dissonance and incoherence, given a kind of overlayer of coherence by the ubiquitous injunction to consume (whatever, bible, porn, big mac, diet, suv, recycled paper...)

  7. self-righteous: "convinced of one's own righteousness especially in contrast with the actions and beliefs of others : narrow-mindedly moralistic"

    Look it up. Look at you.