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.
Sunday, October 03, 2004
A splendid Iraq policy
The Bush administration continues to divide Iraq between "good" Iraqis who support the American sponsored Iraqi provisional government and those "bad" Iraqis who are part of the general insurgency against American occupation.
Bush likes to lump the insurgency into his catch all definition for the "War on Terror," but as Ahmed Hashim, professor of strategic studies at the U.S. Naval War College in Newport, pointed out over a year ago, "the insurgency lies -- at present -- somewhere between a gut-level resistance to the occupation and a classic guerrilla war."
Hashim divided the insurgents into roughly three groups, each having different motives and goals:
1.)"Regime loyalists who believe they have no option but to continue fighting, and who are convinced that the United States will tire long before them." Regime loyalists include "The General Command of the Armed Forces, Resistance and Liberation in Iraq, Popular Resistance for the Liberation of Iraq, Patriotic Front, Al 'Awdah (The Return), and Jihaz al-I'ilam al-siasi lil hizb al-Ba'th."
2.) "Nationalist and patriotic individuals and insurgent groups who resent the U.S. presence and are angered by U.S. failure to restore law and order. These individuals or groups rely heavily on kinship and tribal ties" for their operations and support. Groups within this category include "Al-Anbar Armed Brigades (Thuwwar al-'arak kata'ib al-anbar al-musallahah) and the Black Banner Organization (Munazzamat al-alam al-aswad), which has called for the sabotage of Iraq's oil industry."
3.)"Islamists who have come out of the woodwork after decades of suppression by the Baathist regime. They include: Al-Faruq Brigades, which refers to itself as the military arm of an Islamic resistance organization called the Islamic Movement in Iraq (Al-Harakah al-Islamiyyah fi al-arak); the Mujahideen of the Victorious Sect (Mujahideen al ta'ifa al-Mansoura); Mujahideen Battalions of the Salafi Group of Iraq (Kata'ib al mujahideen fi al-jama'ah al-salafiyah fi al-'arak); and the Jihad Brigades/Cells, which threatens to assassinate those who collaborate with the U.S. occupation."
Far from limited to a small group of "dead-enders" and Saddam "thugs" as Pentagon officials claim, the armed opposition to the US occupation in Iraq has reached the point where some experts say it threatens to become a full-fledged nationalist insurgency.
Bolstered by former Iraqi military and security personnel, today's insurgents are at the least conducting increasingly sophisticated coordinated attacks. In addition, they have built networks to recruit fighters, make weapons, and funnel funds from Iraqi businesses and charitable groups, military experts say.
Perhaps most important, insurgents are now motivated primarily by nationalism and Islam, rather than by loyalty to Saddam Hussein, they say.
It's also likely that there are outside foreign and Al Qaeda elements lending a hand to this multi-faceted home grown Iraq insurgency, but America, still by far the biggest foreign force in Iraq today, is hardly in a position to point fingers at outside agitators.
As I said at the beginning of this piece, the Bush strategy is to divide Iraqis into friends and enemies. Clearly, those Iraqis who support the American occupation are our friends, and those who would take up arms against us, regardless of their motives, are by definition the enemy.
But it wasn't so long ago that Saddam Hussein was America's enemy. He presumably had weapons of mass destruction that he was getting ready to attack us with. Then, after the American invasion and occupation of Iraq, when no WMD were found, the Bush administration shifted the rationale for invading Iraq to one of liberating the Iraqi people. It appears that a growing number of Iraqis have taken Saddam's place as America's enemy for having the nerve to take up arms against their U.S. liberators.
Now, if liberating the Iraqi people means that they are going to be given the right to choose their own form of government, then it must be said that the Iraqi insurgents have just as much right to make that choice as those "good" Iraqis who support the American led Iraqi provisional government. If the U.S. complaint is that the insurgents have decided to make that choice at the end of a barrel of a gun and through the use of bombs and explosives, then the insurgency has simply emulated the tactics of the U.S. invading force.
America didn't just stroll into Iraq invited, and engineer a peaceful, bloodless coup. All along, America has set the standard in Iraq by which political decisions are to be made: through military might and the use of force. "Do as we say or else be captured or killed."
Judged by this standard the Bush Iraq policy is going splendidly.
"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.