If you pay attention, you'll notice a pattern to the way that concepts are frequently expressed by Marxist ideologues such as Abigail Bakan, the new "Social Justice" Department Chair at University of Toronto's Ontario Institute for Studies in Education.
A supposed maxim will be forwarded based not on verifiable facts, but on opinions rooted in antiquated, Marxist axioms. Then, to "prove" it, few if any actual supporting facts will be offered. Instead you will hear quotations of the unsubstantiated opinions of people who share the same views as her.
For example, to prove that Israel is an "apartheid state" she may offer that Desmond Tutu and Jimmy Carter consider Israel is an "apartheid" state.
Forget for a moment Jimmy Carter having expressly said there is nothing resembling apartheid in Israel proper, or that Tutu holds weird, somewhat anti-Semitic views and his outlook on Israel is shaped by factors other than that nation's actual policies.
According to Ms Bakan's dysfunctional logical processes, one has to accept that that something means whatever Desmond Tutu says it means. But then, naturally, only on those occasions when Tutu's opinions align with those of Abigail Bakan and whatever the current Marxist zeitgeist allows.
If this resembles a description of the way conspiracy theorists look at everything, there's good reason for it. Abigail Bakan is a conspiracy theorist; one who makes a living promoting a fallacious, ridiculous,and malign version of global events.
In a speech she made at Lakehead University that was loaded with uniformed, paranoid assertions predicated on her own extremist ideological prejudices, she discussed, among other matters, the primary campaign of Jesse Jackson in the 1980's.
As an example of the power of the dreaded American capitalist elite, she offered that Jackson "ran for President in 1984 and 1988 and at that point his presidency (sic) was withdrawn on the grounds that the Democratic Party would likely split if they put forward a black American candidate. That the party itself couldn't tolerate that type of, just visible diversity. So racism interacts with capitalism..."
Anyone who was an adult while Jesse Jackson ran for the Democratic Party nomination will be aware of a very different reality than the one claimed by OISE's Social Justice Chair Bakan.
Jesse Jackson did well in early primaries and caucuses. But he was eventually defeated not by an elite who forced him out because of a racist conspiracy, but the rather straightforward fact that Massachusetts Governor Michael Dukakis eventually trounced Jackson in open, democratic primary voting and gained enough delegates to win his party's presidential nomination. Among the other candidates Dukakis defeated for the 1988 nomination were Al Gore and Joe Biden.
The fact that the Democrats hadn't named a presidential nominee who never held elected office, such as Jackson, since 1904 when Alton Parker was defeated by Teddy Roosevelt, may have escaped her attention. Or perhaps it's a result of an inability to process information that doesn't coincide with her conspiratorial obsessions.
Whatever the reason, university students, the bulk of whom were not even born when the father of George W. Bush defeated Dukakis for the presidency and whose knowledge of American history is minimal, could easily unquestioningly accept the twisted interpretation put forward by an authority figure like Bakan.
Imagine a generation of students being guided by Abigail Bakan, who is on the editorial board of a website called The Canadian Charger that routinely publishes demented 9-11conspiracy theories.
In Ms Bakan's deranged, conspiracy riddled outlook, the election of Barack Obama was the means by which the ruling capitalist elites planed to replace racism against African Americans with "Islamophobia." In Ms Bakan's mind, the magazine The Economist exists to provide a discourse by elites "maintaining and sustaining American and global imperialism."
Her lunatic assertions are too long to list, but you get the idea.
The world may be terrifying if one believes the idiocies fostered by Ms Bakan. But what should be even more terrifying is that the University of Toronto has given her a substantial platform to proselytize those idiocies as dogma to impressionable students.