Sunday, March 11, 2007

Who are the "good guys" in the Middle East?

On Wednesday, Israeli troops arrested 18 fugitive terrorists. Were these operatives of the evil Hamas movement or the Iranian oriented Islamic Jihad? No, they were members of the Fatah movement of "moderate" Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas. part of the Fatah Al-Aqsa brigades. Where they were arrested is even more interesting, since they were hiding in Palestinian Military intelligence headquarters, where they were supposedly going to be absorbed into the Palestinian Police Force!.

This raid points out one of the absurdities and double binds of an increasingly absurd situation. On the one hand, Mahmoud Abbas is supposed to be a "peace partner." In that capacity, the United States has been supplying his forces with arms. On the other hand, the Fatah remains committed to "resistance" (=terrorism) against Israel. When your "peace partner" attacks you, or harbors terrorists, what are you supposed to do? And after you do it, how do you meet your "peace partner" for further talks? True, these people were supposed to be absorbed into the Palestinian police force. This absorption was supposed to happen in 2005. It is not happening. If some Al Aqsa brigade members join the police force, others are quickly recruited for the role of terrorists. Security in the Palestinian authority turns out to be a comic opera farce in which the police and the terrorists are the same people in different uniforms, guarding themselves against themselves. Of course, there have also been too many instances in which Palestinian police in police uniforms have attacked Israelis.

After Abbas succumbed to Hamas demands and agreed to allow Hamas to take over the PLO as well as forming a government with them in the Mecca agreement, the question of "who is the good guy?" in the Palestinian Authority must be addressed with new urgency. Israel and the United States have to rethink have to rethink their attitude to Mahmoud Abbas. If he wants support as a moderate, he must show some signs that he has earned that support.

Source (See the original for links)


The sources of Leftism in intellectuals

Excerpt from here. I have written on this at greater length here (or here)

Schooling, maintains Nozick, breeds in intellectuals a sense of superiority, and with it a sense of entitlement to the highest rewards society has to offer - not just top salaries but praise comparable to that lavished on them by their teachers. After completing their formal academic training in the centralized environment of the classroom, intellectuals go forth into a seemingly chaotic capitalist society, which purports to reward individual citizens by merit but in fact applies a different standard of merit from the one imparted in the classroom.

So an open, capitalist society falls just short of satisfying intellectuals' sense of entitlement. At least three points are worth teasing out of Nozick's essay. One, capitalist society allows wordsmiths to live comfortable lives-but those who excel outside the classroom often reap the highest material rewards. Entrepreneurship in business or other applied disciplines -- disciplines that may or may not depend on pure academic knowledge or verbal dexterity -- can bring a far more extravagant lifestyle than a career in journalism, government, or the academy.

This runs afoul of intellectuals' sense of their place in the natural pecking order. But it should have little bearing on intellectuals' attitudes toward the armed services, given the less-than-generous salaries and benefits paid to soldiers, sailors, and airmen. Servicemen rank well below wordsmith intellectuals from a purely material standpoint. This disparity should seem to reinforce intellectuals' sense of superiority.

But, American society reserves the highest respect and admiration not for professors or journalists but for those in practical disciplines such as the armed forces, law enforcement, firefighting, or emergency medicine. Americans typically rate the military at or near the top of the nation's institutions, with journalism and lawmakers near or at the bottom. This status deficit rankles intellectuals. While America certainly needs academic skill and enterprise, an open society maddeningly-prizes other things as much as if not more than the ability to turn a clever phrase.....

Nozick observes that academic training teaches intellectuals to prefer a centralized environment in which an authority figure, not the vagaries of the market, sets standards and dispenses rewards and punishments according to certain rational standards.


Brookes News Update

Keynes' errors, fallacies and contradictions: No less a personage than John Stone, considered one of Australia's arch economic rationalists, described Keynes' 'General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money' as a monumental work . As I have tried to make clear, the only thing monumental about the General Theory is the sheer magnitude of its fallacies, inconsistencies and embarrassing contradictions
South America's resurgent left is a threat to liberty: South America's cultist left, led by political gangsters like Chavez, is aligned with Muslim terrorists and Colombian narcoguerrillas. Its goal: to utterly destroy any possibility of liberal societies emerging in South America
Australian media's support for Clinton and the Democrats explains their hatred of Bush: Australia has no equivalent of the 'Washington Times' or the 'American Spectator' to counter the country's leftist journalists. In fact there genuine media criticism is basically non-existent
The liberals compulsion to apologise: Nothing more epitomizes liberals' fear of envy than their compulsion to apologize. Apologize to the world for the existence of exploitative America. Apologize to the Earth for the existence of polluting humanity
Income inequality and leftist bigotry: Income inequality: exchange in a free market is based on voluntary transactions. If the so-called distribution of incomes is unjust then the exchanges that brought about the distribution must also be unjust
Why Hillary Clinton's plan to impose price controls on the drug industry will fail: There is a single historical example of prices controls succeeding. Nevertheless, Hillary Clinton, the genius that created the vaccine shortage, and her fellow band of economic illiterates insist on apply the same destructive policy to all drugs



"Why should the German be interested in the liberation of the Jew, if the Jew is not interested in the liberation of the German?... We recognize in Judaism, therefore, a general anti-social element of the present time... In the final analysis, the emancipation of the Jews is the emancipation of mankind from Judaism.... Indeed, in North America, the practical domination of Judaism over the Christian world has achieved as its unambiguous and normal expression that the preaching of the Gospel itself and the Christian ministry have become articles of trade... Money is the jealous god of Israel, in face of which no other god may exist". Who said that? Hitler? No. It was Karl Marx. See also here and here.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party".

Comments? Email me here (Hotmail address). If there are no recent posts here blame and visit my mirror site here or here. My Home Pages are here or here or here.


No comments: