Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Change the World with Violence

Arthur Silber observes:
the ultimate roots of Bush’s foreign policy, with its plans for “benevolent worldwide hegemony,” are not in anything resembling traditional conservatism, which cautioned against governmental planning from above in all spheres—and the larger the sphere, the greater the caution to be utilized. No, the roots lie in the ideologues of the authoritarian, “transformative” left.
Peeperkorn adds:
Bush is evidently a guy who believes in the creative power of violence.
Silber responds:
the transformative, reordering leftist strain, that relies on force as a means for remaking the world, is one that has now been coopted by the neoconservatives.
Here is an old quote from Jonah Goldberg, which shows that this analysis of the neocon mind is true:
There is nothing we want to see happen in the Middle East that can be accomplished through talking around long tables festooned with bottled water and fresh fruit at Swiss hotels, that cannot be accomplished faster and more permanently through war.
If Goldberg's quote sounds plausible, that's only because the word "war" has been sanitized in the public mind. Usually when we say "war", we mean "the show of force". But war is not some kind of judo or wrestling. To wage war means to use painful violence and cause suffering. This is in turn sanitized by the expression "collateral damage", which makes it sound as if the only victim were shot up walls or hedges.

In reality Goldberg wants people to suffer, because the diplomatic way is not producing results fast enough for them. In fact, they prefer the violence even if it produces the same results, because the show of force makes the other countries more submissive.


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