Monday, January 09, 2006

Thought and Language: Do Not Saturate Before Using

ShrinkWrapped is conducting an interesting experiment to determine if it is actually possible for leftists and neo-cons to engage in substantive debate without it quickly degenerating into name-calling and mutual demonization. To make things manageable, ShrinkWrapped is going to narrow the focus down to the differing perceptions between left and right as to the existential threat posed by Islamofascism. Obviously, those of us "on the right" regard it as a much more serious threat than do those on the left, who generally believe the threat has been manufactured by the President in order to consolidate power and impose a theocracy of his own. Not much middle ground between those two positions, for they aren't just "opposite," they're operating in two irreconcilable realities.

Although I am hoping for the best, I am personally pessimistic, as the first day of the experiment didn't seem to go particularly well. Partly my fault (you should read all the comments to get a sense of how it went). As I posted on ShrinkWrapped, "It's very simple. Leftists are naive about human evil, and always have been. For example, during the cold war, leftists refused to characterize the Soviet Union as evil, and castigated those who did. The identical pattern is occuring now with regard to Islamofascism. This has all sorts of ramifications. For example, if one cannot recognize true evil, one will see the non-evil as evil. As such, the left saw Ronald Reagan as evil, and now see George Bush as evil.... Leftists suffer from a poverty of imagination on the one hand (with regard to the true evil of Islamofascism), but an excess of it on the other hand (with regard to the fantasied evildoings of President Bush)."

Harsh words, perhaps, but are they inaccurate?

I find it virtually impossible to debate with most leftists, not just because they are wrong, but because they cannot possibly be right. In other words, they are not even wrong, for being wrong presupposes some rational basis upon which one can reason someone into, or out of, a position. Not so with with the typical leftist of contemporary America. As I posted, it would be pointless "to debate Cindy Sheehan as to whether George Bush is a bigger terrorist than Osama bin Laden, Howard Dean as to whether Republicans enjoy seeing children go to bed hungry, John Kerry as to whether this is the worst economy since the Great Depression, Kos as to whether Americans working in Iraq are mercenaries that deserve to get killed, Kennedy as to whether the Iraq war was 'cooked up' in Texas for political gain, and Michael Moore as to whether those with whom we are fighting in Iraq are 'minute men' analogous to our own founders."

The psychoanalyst W. R. Bion used the term "saturated" to describe a particular kind of pseudo-thinking commonly encountered by the psychologist. That is, the proper use of language in a healthy mind fosters the evolution of thought. A word or concept is saturated when it cannot do this--it is already so full of meaning that it loses its capacity to actually facilitate thought. Words and concepts can become so overloaded with personal meaning that their use for communication with others becomes extremely problematic. Among other problems, when words are saturated, there is no space left for them to accumulate meaning through experience: the word has become functionally dead insofar as its capacity to allow a space for thinking about internal or external reality.

I believe this is one of the key problems that underlies leftist thought. It is so saturated with meaning that it is absolutely useless for conveying ideas to anyone who doesn't already believe them--anyone who isn't already franticly twirling about in the end-times liberal Ghost Dance.

To illustrate my point, I went straight over to Petey's favorite idiotarium, huffingtonpost, knowing that there would be many fine examples of what I'm talking about. I plucked one off the top, entitled Bush as Bad Theatre, by a playwrite named Sherman Yellen. Although I am a film school graduate, I'd never heard of the man, but that doesn't mean anything. Apparently he's quite eminent in show biz circles, having won two Emmys and a Peabody Award, among other various encomiums.

Yellen's bio states that, having grown up in New York under FDR, he "has watched with great sadness the Bush administration’s dismantling of social programs and social progress in this country." That's quite an accomplishment to have escaped my notice, but no examples are given. I can't help wondering if it didn't really happen. Yellen "believes it is the obligation of artists to speak out against the erosion of our democracy during these troubling times." Again, no examples of the erosion he's so concerned about. No need to give any. Everyone who agrees with him already knows exactly what he's talking about, wink wink.

In fact, in the piece, one searches in vain for anything resembling an unsaturated thought--anything that can actually convey a fact or create curiosity in the unpersuaded, but persuadable, reader. Again, note the difference between Yellen's brand of saturated writing vs. writing that would allow a space for you to engage your curiosity as to just what has him so manifestly overwrought:

--"Bush is our own Tartuffe, Molière's insufferable pseudo-religious comedic character who uses his so called piety to gain power over the lives of others.... it is Bush's voice we hear as Tartuffe pronounces, 'How dare you even hinder or annoy when I've the means to ruin and destroy. You should have thought before my toes you trod. Attacking me, you set yourself 'gainst God.'"

Got it? Bush uses religion and so-called piety to gain control over others, whom he will ruin and destroy in the name of God if they resist. (Yellen is a pretty brave--even reckless--fellow to trod on this vindictive President's toes.)

Okay. Next?

--Bush "would serve nicely as a foolish father in a sit-com, or a ridiculous boss in an office comedy, but he is the Commander-in-Chief who can and does send young men and women to their deaths. Sadly, he does not even have the true villain's consciousness of when he has done wrong. This is why apology and admission of error is so difficult for him. He believes in his God-given rectitude in all situations."

Right. Bush is so stupid, he doesn't even know how wrong and evil he is. Plus, he thinks he is infallibly guided by God. This is convincing stuff. How foolish of me not to have recognized it myself.

Next?

--"Nobody can accuse George Bush of eloquence or locate his courage and love of country as he labors to strip it of its natural wonders, and sell his power to its worst exploiters. What he shares with Henry V is a ruthless ambition wed to a sense of royal entitlement. As Henry exploited his soldiers' patriotism, Bush exploits his nation's fears."

Haven't you been curious about what happened to all the natural wonders of the country? Stripped! That's right. Gone. Kaput. Bush did it while he had you looking the other way, at those two big buildings that fell down on TV. Because he thinks he's king. Plus he's not even eloquent. Not like a deep-thinking, silver-tongued New York playwrite, anyway.

Any more Emmy-worthy thoughts from our serious thinker of the left?

--"Like most incurious people Bush starts with a belief and then searches desperately for the evidence to support it. This faith-based approach to the world is one that most often has tragic consequences for others, rarely for the man himself, protected by his power and by the fear he has exploited in others.... In his heart of hearts he still believes that there are weapons of mass destruction in Iraq to be found if only we had the right dogs to sniff them out."

Incurious. When Yellen calls Bush "incurious," this is code for "not interested in what fascinates secular New York intellectuals who have never encountered an alien thought in their hermetically sealed cognitive bubble." Thus, it is Bush who "searches desperately" for evidence to support his beliefs. In fact, Bush was so desperate in his search that he somehow got every single intelligence agency in the world to confirm his wacky beliefs about WMD--before he even became president!

Yellen continues his analysis:

--"... in Bush we have a man who cannot understand and feel the emotional weight of any situation, or recognize the consequences of his actions. If becomes clearer over time that he has never learned in the course of his misadventures, as he kept failing upwards toward the Presidency, the most essential lesson of life -- the value of other people's lives. For this inherited characteristic we need only look at his mother, Lady Barbara..."

So, not only can President Bush not think or understand consequences, he cannot even feel! Now we are in the realm of the truly monstrous--the reptilian. Bush is a sociopath: he places no value on other people's lives. And there's not a thing he or you or I can do about it, because it's an inherited trait from his beastly mother.

Yellen saves the most devastating critique for last. That is, President Bush cannot be dramatized, no, not even by an Emmy award winning playwrite!

--"A character such as Bush who lacks such consciousness may preside over a country but he cannot command a stage. Bush's smirk is a poor stand-in for Richard's hump." Yes, the hopelessly "boring," "self-righteous, unexamined bad behavior," that "we see in Bush on a daily basis" is just impossible to bring to the stage.

Noooooooooooooo! Not that! You can't make a TV movie out of his life? Scott Peterson? Sure. The Menendez Brothers? Of course. Tonya Harding vs. Nancy Kerrigan? Yellen would write that script in a New York minute. George Bush? No way. Worse yet,

--"We have three more years of Bush as the main player in our national drama, three more years of platitudes, certainties, grinning, winking, cajoling, but never owning the consequences of his own actions. Since he cannot change his act, we will continue to get what we see -- an empty man propped up with a foolish sense of his own worth, taking us from one new disaster to another..."

Hmmmm. Platitudes. Certainties. Inability to change. Empty. Foolish sense of his own worth. And, I might add, saturated. Who does that remind me of?

What's that, Petey?

I won't say it. That would just cheapen the debate.

30 Comments:

Anonymous yesandno said...

Once again, hitting the nail on the head. Not only ideas or concepts, but single words are saturated: racism, for example.

Very interesting and thought provoking...a concept the liberal "intellectuals" have done away with because the non-intellectual must be lead, not included in the thought process. So much for democracy!

1/09/2006 08:33:00 AM  
Blogger ShrinkWrapped said...

I agree with yesandno, you have nailed it. I think the odds of my endeavor succeeding are fairly low and just for the reasons you describe. I have yet to meet a "liberal" whose mind has not been closed for so long that the doors have rusted shut. However, in the slight hope that there might be an open minded liberal (Diogenes, meet lamp), I am setting out to see if I can engage one in a real discussion. That is why I have tried to narrow the focus; I do not want to give them any excuse for avoiding a real discussion.
I am pessimistic, but we will see.

1/09/2006 09:18:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have engaged leftists in argument and am always amazed when they look at me in solemnity and say, "You really feel deeply about this, don't you."
I have given them arguments and all they heard was "feelings".
Aaarggg - now I've got feelings.
But, that's not the end of it. There are always those leftists who believe that a conservative should not have feelings. Feelings are truth and conservatives can't have truth, so they can't have feelings either.
Conclusion - I have feelings because I'm insane. That's when they snidely ask if I've taken my pills that day.

1/09/2006 09:50:00 AM  
Anonymous sam b said...

“, it would be pointless "to debate Cindy Sheehan as to whether George Bush is a bigger terrorist than Osama bin Laden, Howard Dean as to whether Republicans enjoy seeing children go to bed hungry, John Kerry as to whether this is the worst economy since the Great Depression, Kos as to whether Americans working in Iraq are mercenaries that deserve to get killed, Kennedy as to whether the Iraq war was 'cooked up' in Texas for political gain, and Michael Moore as to whether those with whom we are fighting in Iraq are 'minute men' analogous to our own founders."

your usual technique, string together caricatures of far out views call it the left and decline from debating it seriously.

Fortunately many members of the "left" have serious ideas on social policy and find serious conservatives to debate with

take a look for example in 11/29/05
wsj for a long, civil and wide ranging debate between Robert Reich ex Clinton Labor Secy, Prof at Brandesi and founder of a "lefty " serious journal and Prof Glenn Hubbard of Columbia B School . Civil, intelligent and even some areas of some agreement.

Want a liberal critique of the war ? Read George Packer's book Assasin's Gate, the New Yorker, the New Republic, articles by Robert Pollack former NSC staff member. I'll give you a large biblio if u want to start reading.

not Cindy Sheehan.

Unless you just want pinatas to hit, not serious opinions to confront

i'll post some excerpts, if you want to save yourself time

1/09/2006 09:55:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Caricatures?

Howard Dean is the head of the Democratric Party. Kerry is their most recent presidential candidate. The beloved Kennedy, along with Robert Byrd, their ranking senator. Michael Moore was given an honored seat at their convention. Not a single Democrat has denounced Mother Moonbat Sheehan.

1/09/2006 10:03:00 AM  
Anonymous sam b said...

there you go again. Why do you cite the post you did from Huffington instead of something like this by Susanne Nossel


"With all eyes on an Iraq and an executive branch both out of control, Iran under President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has not so quietly emerged as about as frightening a rogue state as can be imagined. Iran has long kept us up at night as a proliferator, a terrorist haven, a theocracy, and a regime hostile to the United States....

....A scenario in which it's de facto impossible for the US to pursue what the world would likely view as the legitimate use of force in response to WMD in the hands of a rogue Middle Eastern regime precisely because of our prior illegitimate use of force for the same purported goal is not out of the question. Iraq just might wind up tying our hands in the real battle we may face over nukes in Iran."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/suzanne-nossel/irans-president-is-off-t_b_13493.html

could it be because it's not a Cindy Sheehan type pinata opinion to swing a hammer at ?

1/09/2006 10:13:00 AM  
Blogger D. Vision said...

Contrast Cindy Sheehan with Pat Robertson. Robertson: one or two completely braindead comments trumpeted by the media and quickly and forcefully denounced by conservatives everywhere. The man has been disowned (with good reason).

Sheehan makes completely idiotic statements riddled with complete factual reversals and filled with vitriolic tripe and she's called the "Peace Mom" and embraced by every leftist on this side of the planet. Meanwhile, the MSM doesn't air the most outrageous of her statements but focuses on how her grief makes her unassailable.

Uh-huh.

Enter Michael Moore. The devious fool manufactures a propaganda piece of such outrageous distortion it will serve as a catalogue of intellectual deceit for future generations and MILLIONS of leftists go see it, accepting it WHOLESALE as their belief system.

1/09/2006 10:13:00 AM  
Anonymous sam b said...

last one for now

you wrote a few days ago the NSA wiretaps were a "non issue". Apparently some non partisan folks that researched the issue conclude otherwise:

Jan. 6 (Bloomberg) -- President George W. Bush's assertion that he didn't need congressional approval to authorize wiretapping without warrants isn't ``well grounded'' in law, according to a non-partisan congressional report.
The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, the 1978 law that created a special court to evaluate administration wiretapping requests, doesn't exempt a National Security Agency program Bush authorized, according to a Congressional Research Service report.
``It appears unlikely that a court would hold that Congress has expressly or impliedly authorized the NSA electronic- surveillance operations here under discussion,'' the 44-page report said.

intelligent, reality based debate ?

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=10000103&sid=af_9KRWRfAY8&refer=us#

1/09/2006 11:01:00 AM  
Anonymous jwm said...

I see, sam. The executive branch is out of control. Because the NSA intercepted al qaeda cell phone calls. Well that one's wrapped up.
Next?
It's now de facto impossible to stop Iran. Why? Because the French won't approve? Oh- because we didn't find a huge stockpile of wmd therefore the war with Iraq was illegitimate and so now we can't stop Iran. Makes perfect sense.
Gosh, why won't Bush listen to these people?
I can't imagine.

JWM

1/09/2006 11:21:00 AM  
Anonymous sam b said...

jwm

your constitutionaland legal knowledge and reasoning are overwhelming ,particular as compared to the legal scholars at crs

thks for the
"analysis"

btw US iran policy for the past year and a half: let the french and the rest of "old europe" handle
it and then bring it to the UN

look up some press conferences at whitehouse.gov
or state dept website

thanks for your "analysis" after clearly researching US policy on iranian nukes

want the direct citations ? i'll post them if you don't want to do the research

1/09/2006 11:34:00 AM  
Anonymous AC said...

"the proper use of language in a healthy mind fosters the evolution of thought. A word or concept is saturated when it cannot do this--it is already so full of meaning that it loses its capacity to actually facilitate thought. Words and concepts can become so overloaded with personal meaning that their use for communication with others becomes extremely problematic. Among other problems, when words are saturated, there is no space left for them to accumulate meaning through experience: the word has become functionally dead insofar as its capacity to allow a space for thinking about internal or external reality. "





"Which brings me to this week's scandal about No Such Agency spying on "Americans." I have difficulty ginning up much interest in this story inasmuch as I think the government should be spying on all Arabs, engaging in torture as a televised spectator sport, dropping daisy cutters wantonly throughout the Middle East and sending liberals to Guantanamo. "

dec 21 ann coulter column

2 #1 bestsellers

as she says "the only way to talk to a liberal is with a baseball bat"

1/09/2006 01:32:00 PM  
Anonymous jodie d said...

you go Ann!!!!

1/09/2006 01:34:00 PM  
Anonymous jwm said...

Sam b If you want to do sarcsm, cool. It's good fun, and I can snark with the best of 'em.
So you found yourself some experts who said the NSA intercepts "weren't well grounded in law". Fine. I can go to Hewitt, or Powerline, and find experts who say otherwise. But rather than play dueling citations, how about if you stand there flat-footed and tell me that you are really distressed that the president, in the wake of 9/11, had the NSA listen in on al quaeda cell phone calls. I'm sure you'd reprimand an ambulance driver who didn't come to a full stop at a stop sign while he was rushing you to the emergency room.I know. You're a hard core civil libertarian, and you're sincerely worried about the slippery slope. If we let him get away with this one, next thing you know they'll be listening in on every nickel and dime pot deal, and throwing people in re-education camps.
I call BS.
Or BDS to be exact.

Iran? It ain't over till it's over. Bush said he would not allow a nuclear Iran. I'll take him at his word.

JWM

1/09/2006 02:14:00 PM  
Anonymous curious george said...

just curious what do you people read upon which to base your opinions

i do mean real books or publications, not blogs of course

1/09/2006 03:06:00 PM  
Anonymous sam b said...

congressional research service = blogger

makes sense to me

1/09/2006 03:08:00 PM  
Anonymous jwm said...

http://hughhewitt.com/bio.php Hewitt.
Just some guy with a blog.

But, once again, sam b. Forget your experts. Do you believe that Bush did a bad thing by having the NSA monitor al quaeda cell phone transmissions? Do you believe that this was an illegal act? Do you believe it violated anyone's civil liberties? Whose?
Do you believe Bush should be punished for doing it?

So don't worry about citations. Just say what you believe.

JWM

1/09/2006 03:49:00 PM  
Anonymous jwm said...

Hey, George, have you met Mr. Shift Key and his Punctuation Pals?

They make writing fun.

JWM

1/09/2006 04:22:00 PM  
Anonymous sam b said...

why is what I believe, as a non lawyer, a good answer to what is legal ?

on the other hand the product of legal research and the ultimate judgement by a court would be excellent answers as to what is legal

anything illogical with that mode of analysis ?

moreover since no one (except a select few) knows exactly what the "program' was it's pretty hard to judge it's legality

is that logical ?

http://www.opencrs.com/document/M20060105

1/09/2006 04:24:00 PM  
Anonymous larwyn said...

Posting part of your post in the comment section of
Just One Minute's "It takes a Lefty to Catch ......

As I already informed Shrinkwrapped the argument is engaged there with Farber
in the fray.

Hope all will look in.

1/09/2006 04:52:00 PM  
Anonymous jwm said...

It's logical as can be.

I said. Take a pass on all your citations, all your evidence, and all your experts. I will assume that you have a foundation of facts for all of your beliefs.

That's why I want to cut to the chase and hear you say what you believe insofar as the questions I asked.

JWM

1/09/2006 04:52:00 PM  
Anonymous larwyn said...

Will post an except of your essay in comments to
Just One Minute's "It Takes a Lefty to Catch....."

Have already informed Shrinkwrapped the argument is engaged with Farber in this comment section.

Hope all will join in over
there also.

1/09/2006 04:56:00 PM  
Blogger Assistant Village Idiot said...

sam b, you are digging yourself in deeper. Your argument is now down to "few people know what the program is, but I read newspaper excerpts of a report by unknown bureaucrats that think George W. Bush might not have slam-dunk legal authority." Wow, that's good enough for me. Impeach 'im.

To the original point. Yes there are reasonable liberals out there, or perhaps it would be better to say "reasonable non-conservatives." As Anonymous 10:03 noted, the high-profile liberals frequently make amazingly incendiary and stupid statements. I don't doubt that you've got some better advocates for the liberal cause, but the fact that they are hard to find is significant in itself.

Put another way, whatever system liberals are currently using to assign prominence to individuals has resulted in a pack of bigots and idiots. It's not much good to say "well, there are other guys that are better." Well, send 'em out. Send the current spokesmen to the showers. Joe Lieberman's solidity in the WOT has earned him the right to be attended to when talking about other issues. I may not agree with his views on social programs and the uses of government, but he has earned my ear. He will get a better hearing from many conservatives than he would have otherwise. It's simple. He clearly cares about this country and he's not nuts.

What I'm looking for are people who have actual plans and methods for dealing with the overall WOT. I don't find many liberals even attempting that these days. All the energy is going into trying to show how the neo-cons got it wrong. The Bush opponents offer a few glittering generalities about the international community or winning hearts and minds, but don't mention how this might be accomplished.

If you've got somebody hidden back there who has a set of ideas how we can get our message across to the average Arab worldwide, while undermining the influence of the Wahabbis, and providing some breathing space for democratic elements in the Middle East, we'd love to hear it. Even if it goes in a different direction than we are now, founded on different premises, we'll at least listen.

We don't just want our ideas to win because it would prove what brilliant dudes we are. We believe in our ideas because we think they will work. We don't oppose liberal's ideas because we think they're just poopyheads, but because we think they don't work.

1/09/2006 05:59:00 PM  
Anonymous curious george said...

jwm

thks for your answer.

know i have a better idea of what u read

1/09/2006 06:26:00 PM  
Anonymous sam b said...

jwm
"So don't worry about citations. Just say what you believe."

"ultimately the courts will resolve this issue"

which sounds more reasonable


horrors !!!! second quote is from ted kennedy

1/09/2006 06:28:00 PM  
Anonymous sam b said...

distort again
1. learn what the crs is and its credibility among Rep members of cong vs Hugh Hewitt
2. where did i use the word impeach


reading list

economic policy
robert reich, gene sperling and (yes) krugman

me policy: robert pollack george packer, James Fallows

ever read Foreign Policy ? Nyker ? Atlantic

who is your hall of fame:

rush ? ann ? bernard goldberg" all have massive audiences

politicans ?

frist ? delay ?

I'm a big McCain fan btw
and I would match Schumer anyday in intellect and ethics against the 2 above combined

did you know your pinata Cindy is pushing an anti Hillary for Sen campaign ?

"assign prominence to individuals has resulted in a pack of bigots and idiots"

talk about civil discourse !! who fits the above ?: Barack Obama, Schumer, Reid,Feingold, Reich, Krugman , Katrina Vande Heuvel ? and yes even Hillary, Kennedy or Pelosi

or did u mean
coulter Oreilly and Savage
and their best selling books and multi million tv/radio audience

1/09/2006 06:44:00 PM  
Anonymous jwm said...

Uh- sam:
I'll repeat one question I already posted, and then I'm done for tonight. (warning: sarcasm)

Have you met Mr. Shift Key and his Punctuation Pals?
Not only do they make writing fun, they make it clear.

And you still didn't answer any of my questions.

JWM

1/09/2006 06:49:00 PM  
Anonymous sam b said...

based on my non professional reading of a 44 page 139 footnote
report by experts (sorry but the research of experts is always an input into my forming an opinion) by the nonpartisan research arm of (the republican controlled) congress. I would say:

1. it is quite debatable whether the president exceeded his authority with the program although we don't even know the scope of the program.
2. It is quite likely that wiretaps of the vast majority of the subjects would have been approved if the normal procedure of going through a FISA court was used.
3. The fact that the #2 in the Justice Dept questioned the program is quite troubling. They had to go to Ashcroft on his hospital bed to get a sign off on the program.
4. The extent of the program was not revealed to congress.
5. It is quite possible that the courts will find that the fourth amendment rights of some were violated.It is also quite possible courts will rule that a national security exception exists making the program legitimate.
6. If the program is shut down I would say the admin pushed the limits of the law but it would certainly not be an impeachable offense.

there you go,jwm

But it's impossible to have a civil discussion with liberals and they all wish al qaeda would commit another 9/11,

not only that :

"I'm sure you'd reprimand an ambulance driver who didn't come to a full stop at a stop sign while he was rushing you to the emergency room."

actually jwm, not only do I do that . I hang out every night and write down the numbers of the fire trucks exceeding the speed limit and call the ACLU to file suit.

if you remember my first post was simply to note that the legality of the program is not a "non issue"


anyway enjoy you're echo chamber here.

Congrats it seems you've chased away someone else who tried to engage in a reasoned discourse

1/09/2006 09:51:00 PM  
Anonymous jwm said...

samb;
OK- I'll apologize for snarkiness.
But. I asked you a set of questions, all beginning "Do you believe..." I said I would take you at your word that your beliefs in the matter were backed by facts. I just wanted to hear you say it: "I think Bush did a bad thing by intercepting al qaida cell phone transmissions. He broke the law, violated people's civil liberties, and should be punished for it."

And most importantly, I began by asking if you were really distressed that the president, in the wake of 9/11, ordered intercepts of al qaida cell phone transmissions.
It's a question of values and priorities.
Are your civil liberties more important than national security when the nation is under attack? If you think they are, then OK. That's where you're coming from.


Myself- I'd be outraged if, in the wake of 9/11, the president (Republican or Democrat) was busy dithering around making sure no one's civil liberties were endangered before taking action. Because national security is no longer an abstract notion. It is no longer a threat of massed armies and enemy planes overhead. It is a war of suicide crime- as personal a someone sitting next to you on a plane.

JWM

1/09/2006 10:52:00 PM  
Blogger Goesh said...

There are no real enemies from the perspecive of the Left - they view terrorism as a transient condition wearing a human face. I am convinced that even if a suitcase nuke was set off here in the States, the Left would not regard the doers as enemies needing to be destroyed. They would engage in an orgy of blaming and chastising, nothing more. The Left as a whole is incapable of self protection. Some go as far as to deem them political leeches, parasites. The Left as political parasites - talk about an intriguing paradigm.

1/10/2006 07:33:00 AM  
Blogger Assistant Village Idiot said...

sam b said

Congrats it seems you've chased away someone else who tried to engage in a reasoned discourse

Nope. I'm still here.

sam, you've said it yourself. The government report stated that, at maximum, it's debateable. You have been reading the parts of the report which the general media highlighted. That is simply not the same as your claim to be reading the opinions of experts.

If you bring up teenagers, you find that they stumble on a technique leading to an elaborate rationalization: "If I can get you to debate something, it is by definition debateable. If something is debateable then one opinion is as respectable as another. If one opinion is as good as another, I can do what I want."

Just because someone says something's debateable (or questionable, etc) doesn't mean squat. It's only real use in discussion is as a polite way to suggest someone is essentially wrong.

1/10/2006 04:09:00 PM  

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