Tuesday, December 28, 2004

The "differences" of the World

After reading Vin's article it occured to me that, though I do agree with his assessment, the most important part of the argument is that, culturally, there are still those out there who are not accustomed to autonomous behaviour.

That there is a "culture gap" doesn't even really describe the situation.

In this respect, I have no opinions about there being a "better" culture, or that our system, as good as it is, is either perfect, or for everyone.

I can't abide communism, except as a voluntary exercise (hippies living in communes), and the idea of aristocracy is equally repugnant, though both are still seen in the world today.

Iraq was, for a long time, the most progressive society in all of the middle east. There were many western influences prior to the Ba'athist revolution of the 60's, if I recall correctly. Night life, modern conveniences, Liqour, western clothing, all could be had in Baghdad circa 1955. Truth be known, all can still be found today, if willing to risk certain things.

So what went wrong? Why can't these people return to that type of open society that nurtured social reform?

Is that asking the Iraqis to adopt our standards, our lifestyle, or our culture? I don't think so, and I very plainly say that that has nothing to do with "relativism" or an "either/or" situation. It isn't about imposing our supposed Americn "exceptionalism" on them, only about giving them an oppurtunity to have some dignity and determine their own path. This is something that I believe Bush understands and JohnJohn never did, and an issue that the typical Leftist can only deal with by being a member of Amnesty, Int. or something along those lines.

My guess as to why the Iraqis have not taken to the whole freedom thing is that having the Ba'athists stick their collective jackboot on everyone's neck for the better part of 2 or 3 generations had squashed all of the resistance out of them. Fear, afterall, is a very powerful tool.

It may take time for them to come around. Perhaps not. Perhaps they will never know what it is like to grasp the concept of liberty. That is possible, I suppose. All we can do is help that cause along and hope that it takes hold.


Friday, December 03, 2004

Santayana was right.

I am utterly speechless about this.

How can it be that almost HALF of all Brits don't know about this?

Sure, the data (It was collected by the commie, governmentally controlled BBC, afterall) may not have been collected correctly, or the question may have been worded so as to confuse someone, but please, how hard can it really be?

It seems that Santayana was right, those who cannot remember the past are truly condemned to repeat it. Hence the decision to disarm its citizenry, albeit slowly.

I guess it is more convenient to think in this manner. Forget history, for it is bunk. Don't worry about what happened in the past, for you can not change it. Move forward, with a blind eye, and only do what appears to be politically correct.

Witness to what that has brought the U.S. under the Clintonistas. An indifference to, or redefinition of, what is right and wrong. A reactionary, totalitarian, statist, power hungry autocrat, bent on telling everyone exactly what to do, simply because he can.

History can no longer be taught in school, since it attempts to instill certain principles into one's mind about where we came from, or how this country came about. History is written by the winner, but who is the winner? Is it too PC to tell the truth any longer?

These two ideas seem to be diametrically opposed to one another if the Left were to be askance of the issue, since they tell us that we came out of the trees in east-central Africa, and moved north and east to populate the world. I am fine with this stance, and find it to be perfectly plausible. A watertight case. The radicals on the Right would say that we are a, "nation, under God," and this evolution thing is something that is blasphemy. Who cares?

The fact remains that millions died in the camps, Auschwitz being only one of many, and that has nothing to do with perspective or who "won." So why is it that people don't know about this? Why are they forgetting? Do we want to forget because it is too painful? Or do we want to forget, only to make the same mistake again and again?

It seems to me that that is the answer. Mass disarmament of the Polish Jews was one of the cornerstones of the Nazi's systematic implementation of destruction. Slow encroachment. A little here, a little there. Criminalize trivial things. Haul people off with no warrant, reason or information. Send their families a bill to pay for the bullet that was used to kill their loved ones. Tag, badge, belittle and humiliate the "troublemakers" (sounds like the Donk's platform on the issue of "gun nuts" doesn't it?) and, in the end, round them up and do away with them while the public watches your propaganda films (Dan Rather's media), showing the "evidence" of the Jewish conspiracy (Second Amendment advocates, the NRA, Assault Rifles....). Do you see where I'm going with this?

The Second is being, or has been, written off by huge segments of the population as unnecessary and out of step with the times. They claim that the world is different these days. The country is different. We are no longer frontiersmen, and the idea of a militaristic overthrow is laugable, they claim. We have a military to fight our battles and a police force to protect us.

Yet recent world history would suggest to me that this attitude is completely without merit. I need only mention the following; Hitler, Pinochet, Pol Pot, Castro, Saddam Hussein, feel free to insert the African dictator of your choice here. So what does this have to do with Auschwitz? If that many Brits don't know about Auschwitz, hom many would know of the other people and places that were torn asunder? If they don't know about these events, it is far easier to assert that guns have no place in a "civil" society.

For weekend viewing pleasure, may I recommend; The Pianist, Schindler's List, THX1138, Fahrenheit 451.

Keep ignoring the problem, and it will go away.

Not likely.