Political language -- and with variations this is true of all political parties, from Conservatives to Anarchists -- is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.
In a time of universal deceit - telling the truth is a revolutionary act.
If you want a vision of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face - forever.
But if thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought.
Sometimes the first duty of intelligent men is the restatement of the obvious.
Whatever is funny is subversive, every joke is ultimately a custard pie... a dirty joke is a sort of mental rebellion.
In our age there is no such thing as 'keeping out of politics.' All issues are political issues, and politics itself is a mass of lies, evasions, folly, hatred and schizophrenia.
All political thinking for years past has been vitiated in the same way. People can foresee the future only when it coincides with their own wishes, and the most grossly obvious facts can be ignored when they are unwelcome.
At fifty everyone has the face he deserves.
Most people get a fair amount of fun out of their lives, but on balance life is suffering, and only the very young or the very foolish imagine otherwise.
John Stuart Mill
Conservatives are not necessarily stupid, but most stupid people are conservatives.
The amount of eccentricity in a society has generally been proportional to the amount of genius, mental vigor, and moral courage it contained. That so few now dare to be eccentric marks the chief danger of the time.
The general tendency of things throughout the world is to render mediocrity the ascendant power among mankind.
Whatever crushes individuality is despotism, by whatever name it may be called and whether it professes to be enforcing the will of God or the injunctions of men.
A man who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself.
Don't let schooling interfere with your education.
All generalizations are false, including this one.
A classic is something that everybody wants to have read and nobody wants to read.
Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please.
Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.
The Public is merely a multiplied "me."
Only kings, presidents, editors, and people with tapeworms have the right to use the editorial "we."
Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.
Only one thing is impossible for God: To find any sense in any copyright law on the planet.
Don't go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first.
The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.
I like pigs. Dogs look up to us. Cats look down on us. Pigs treat us as equals.
Don't talk to me about naval tradition. It's nothing but rum, sodomy and the lash.
Never hold discussions with the monkey when the organ grinder is in the room.
Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfils the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things.
However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results.
In war as in life, it is often necessary when some cherished scheme has failed, to take up the best alternative open, and if so, it is folly not to work for it with all your might.
Otto Von Bismarck
When you want to fool the world, tell the truth.
I have seen three emperors in their nakedness, and the sight was not inspiring.
Never believe anything in politics until it has been officially denied.
Be polite; write diplomatically ;even in a declaration of war one observes the rules of politeness.
A witty saying proves nothing.
If God created us in his own image, we have more than reciprocated.
When he to whom one speaks does not understand, and he who speaks himself does not understand, that is metaphysics.
I have never made but one prayer to God, a very short one: "O Lord make my enemies ridiculous." And God granted it.
To succeed in the world it is not enough to be stupid, you must also be well-mannered.
Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is absurd.
It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.
The best way to be boring is to leave nothing out.
Philosophy stands in the same relation to the study of the actual world as masturbation to sexual love.
All I know is I'm not a Marxist.
The writer may very well serve a movement of history as its mouthpiece, but he cannot of course create it.
Wednesday, May 26, 2004
Tell me why I'm wrong
What is a "Liberal" in the minds of conservatives? My impression is that they seem to use the term to denote:
a. A non-conservative
b. Pro-Big government intellectual
c. Anyone who disagrees with conservative politicians or pundits
I will explicitly state *WHY* I oppose the Iraqi war, on the grounds of morality, evidence and philosophy. The purpose is to open debate, not to pidgeon hole and label. Only by challenging each other's assumptions can we evolve our view of the world. If I am wrong, I'd like to know.
Simply put, I see Bush as a radical who is threatening Americias security at home and abroad. In addition, I've been frightened by the nationalistic rhetoric from some of the war's supporters. I use George Orwell's Definition of Nationalism:
By "nationalism" I mean first of all the habit of assuming that human beings can be classified like insects and that whole blocks of millions or tens of millions of people can be confidently labelled "good" or "bad." But secondly -- and this is much more important -- I mean the habit of identifying oneself with a single nation or other unit, placing it beyond good and evil and recognizing no other duty than that of advancing its interests. Nationalism is not to be confused with patriotism. Both words are normally used in so vague a way that any definition is liable to be challenged, but one must draw a distinction between them, since two different and even opposing ideas are involved. By "patriotism" I mean devotion to a particular place and a particular way of life, which one believes to be the best in the world but has no wish to force on other people. Patriotism is of its nature defensive, both militarily and culturally. Nationalism, on the other hand, is inseperable from the desire for power. The abiding purpose of every nationalist is to secure more power and more prestige, not for himself but for the nation or other unit in which he has chosen to sink his own individuality.
What frightens me is the lack of discussion regarding the ethics of deadly force against other human beings. War is not something to be taken lightly, and it should always be open to debate and reconsideration. Those who support the war may say that although thousands of Iraqi civilians have died during the occupation, it was worth the price to free 25 million. However, the more one unravels that defense, the more tangels one will find. Under what circumstances is it acceptable to put innocent civilians at risk of death or disfigurement without their consultation? In International Law, the one exception is that deadly force may be used in self-defense even when innocent people will be killed in the combat required to defeat the aggressor. Where is the evidence that Iraq posed an imminant threat? You must skew the very definitions of imminent and threat to argue that it existed. Forget flags and slogans, people have a right to live, even when a majority thinks their death serves a greater good. Ghandi once said, "What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism or the holy name of liberty or democracy?"
So, you may retort by noting that we saved Iraqis from mass slaughter at the hands of Saddam. Yet, such intentions cannot be argued retroactively. We raced to war with an administration using the wrong intelligence, from the wrong people. As a matter of International law, the United State's occupation is illegal. It is violently opposed by most of the world community, infact a world gallup poll before our invasion cited the United States as "The most dangerous Country" followed by North Korea, Iraq, and Israel. You see, the lack of WMDs and the torture are the tip of the ice burg. I oppose the war on the grounds that it has isolated the United States from the International community, made the world even MORE dangerous, and was admittedly built on lies (see Wolfawitz and Pearle). In the process, we've spent unknown quanities of money that could have been used to neutralize the true threat to our security- Russia's poorly guarded stock pile of 20,000 nuclear warheads. The CIA knows that warheads are missing, but the Russian's refuse to give us a straight answer on how serious is the situation. I don't whole heartidly support Kerry, but I consider Bush's strategy a grave danger to our security. Moreover, I do not think his administration will ever gain legitamacy in the world community. Call me arrogant, but the evidence against the war is overwhelming. It goes beyond slogans, and sound bytes... its a tangled web of deception, inhumanity, and arrogance; its heavily documented from multiple sources of varying affiliations, political spectrums, and nationalities. Are they really all wrong, and fox is right? Or have I missed the big picture? If you want the sources of my information, let me know, i'll happily send it to you.
"The Price of Liberty is Eternal Vigilance"- Thomas Jefferson
Good summary of the arguments against the war... Liberals need to start wondering why this happened in a supposedly free democracy. I think the answer lies in a well-organized right-wing that is taking advantage of the extreme political apathy and ignorance that characterizes our consumerist society.
Hey, I posted an artical mentioning "inverted totalitarianism". I think it is a good answer into how this happened. We must never forget: Democracy is historically a fragile institution that must be maintained by active and vigilent citizens.
"Netpolitik is a new style of diplomacy that seeks to exploit the powerful capabilities of the Internet to shape politics, culture, values, and personal identity. But unlike Realpolitik — which seeks to advance a nation’s political interests through amoral coercion — Netpolitik traffics in “softer” issues such as moral legitimacy, culturalidentity, societal values, and public perception." - The Rise of Netpolitik
PUN-DIT (n) : A learned man; a teacher; a source of opinion; a critic: a political pundit.