The lunacy of pretending we’re all one big happy family

This is the beginning of yet another must-read Mark Steyn column:

This year I marked the anniversary of Sept. 11 by driving through Massachusetts. It wasn’t exactly planned that way, just the way things panned out. So, heading toward Boston, I tuned to Bay State radio talk-show colossus Howie Carr and heard him reading out portions from the official address to the 9/11 commemoration ceremony by Deval Patrick, who is apparently the governor of Massachusetts: 9/11, said Gov. Patrick, “was a mean and nasty and bitter attack on the United States.”

“Mean and nasty”? He sounds like an oversensitive waiter complaining that John Kerry’s sent back the aubergine coulis again. But evidently that’s what passes for tough talk in Massachusetts these days – the shot heard around the world and so forth. Anyway, Gov. Patrick didn’t want to leave the crowd with all that macho cowboy rhetoric ringing in their ears, so he moved on to the nub of his speech: 9/11, he continued, “was also a failure of human beings to understand each other, to learn to love each other.”

I was laughing so much I lost control of the wheel, and the guy in the next lane had to swerve rather dramatically. He flipped me the Universal Symbol of Human Understanding. I certainly understood him, though I’m not sure I could learn to love him. Anyway, I drove on to Boston and pondered the governor’s remarks. He had made them, after all, before an audience of 9/11 families: Six years ago, two of the four planes took off from Logan Airport, and so citizens of Massachusetts ranked very high among the toll of victims. Whether any of the family members present Tuesday were offended by Gov. Patrick, no one cried “Shame!” or walked out on the ceremony. Americans are generally respectful of their political eminences, no matter how little they deserve it.

We should beware anyone who seeks to explain 9/11 by using the words “each other”: They posit a grubby equivalence between the perpetrator and the victim – that the “failure to understand” derives from the culpability of both parties. The 9/11 killers were treated very well in the United States: They were ushered into the country on the high-speed visa express program the State Department felt was appropriate for young Saudi males. They were treated cordially everywhere they went. The lap-dancers at the clubs they frequented in the weeks before the Big Day gave them a good time – or good enough, considering what lousy tippers they were. Sept. 11 didn’t happen because we were insufficient in our love to Mohamed Atta.

This isn’t a theoretical proposition. At some point in the future, some of us will find ourselves on a flight with a chap like Richard Reid, the thwarted shoe-bomber. On that day we’d better hope the guy sitting next to him isn’t Gov. Patrick, who sees him bending down to light his sock and responds with a chorus of “All You Need Is Love,” but a fellow who “understands” enough to wallop the bejesus out of him before he can strike the match. It was the failure of one group of human beings to understand that the second group of human beings was determined to kill them that led the crew and passengers of those Boston flights to stick with the obsolescent 1970s hijack procedures until it was too late.

It would be so nice to say that Steyn’s point — there is an “us” and there is a “them” — falls into the “duh” category, if it weren’t for the fact that so many Americans seem incapable of understanding it, and do still try for the la-la-la kumbiyah school of international relations.  Of course, these warm fuzzy types are better (if only slightly) than the 30% of their compatriots who have decided that there is an “us” and a “them,” with the “us” being their Birkenstocked selves, and the them being their own government.  That’s not mere denial, that’s insanity.

9 Responses

  1. […] [Discuss this topic with Bookworm at Bookworm Room] Share Article Howie Carr, Deval Patrick, Massachusetts, 9/11, United States, Saudi    Sphere: Related Content | Trackback URL […]

  2. Please read the material in this link by Tom Kratman, Book

    It provides an interesting and slightly comprehensive explanation of “love one another” and “humanity is eternal brotherhood” and various other sentiments like that.

  3. This is what they are taught in cultural sensitivity and diversity training.

  4. I suppose this extraordinary post springs from a juvenile reading of, for example, “The Family of Man” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Family_of_Man). The anticdote to the post’s thinking can be found in the Hall of Names at Yad Vashem in Jerusalem:

    “Remember only that I was innocent and, just like you, mortal on that day, I, too, had had a face marked by rage, by pity and joy, quite simply, a human face!” -Benjamin Fondane, Exodus, Murdered at Auschwitz, 1944 (http://www1.yadvashem.org/new_museum/Galleries/gal10Hall.html)

  5. My short addendum and thoughts on what Kratman said, is that true cosmopolitanism, which I see as closely related to classical liberalism and the philosophy of Aristotle and military science implicit in the study of war by such noteworthy figures as Sun Tzu, Clausewitz, etc, combines both the might of security and the right of liberty. Duties and freedoms, responsibilities and power. They go together in a way. Light and Darkness. Matter and anti-matter.

    Both the Roman and Greek models tried to contain a good hybrid mix of militarism, in order to beat back the barbarians and maintain social order against wannabe Revolutionaries or greedy neighbor city-states, and also forward the elements of progress on the human condition so that the day tomorrow is always better for humanity and its children than the day before.

    Obviously, Book, this “mix” I would call it, was running on a shoestring budget. How much can you really do in freeing the serfs if you are only freeing them so that they could be free to starve because the economy is so shoddy that they can’t get work or the conditions are so bad they might as well be serfs in all but name only? Without the technological progress, slavery would still be popular and is still popular in Europe, Balkans, Asia, Arab oil states, and so forth. As people can see with the War on Drugs, pseudo fake war on drugs that is, it is very hard to stamp out things that is economically profitable since the greed motive will always be more effective than the “live clean” motive, especially when the greed motive is backed by Columbia mafia and Mexican drug lord armaments while “live clean” is backed up by DEA “arrest and get out of jail soon’ cards.

    As Greeks, Romans, Europeans, and so forth outside the sphere of American power, security, and order, they see things the same as Libertarians here in the US concerning drug use. Sure we have points about individual rights and all that, but it is always about the powerful making a living off of the weak. Whether it is government or mafia crime lords, it doesn’t really matter. Regulated slavery is still slavery. Regulated drug use and addiction is still drug use and addiction. That has not changed, regardless of technology from the US or social advacements in the form of the US Constitution.

    I’m just describing the point that when things are economically feasible and beneficial, people will make up excuses to do it, if only because it is more convenient.

    Thus, true human liberty can only come from empowering the individual and making sure that the individual actually has something of a free will before you say that the individual has exercised that will through making a choice. The United States succedes the most in this field of human liberty. People come here because primarily they want to become more powerful so that others don’t stomp on them cause they find it funny to see the fear in the eyes of people that can’t fight back even if they wanted to. They got tired of taking it in the teeth. Outside the United States, powerful and rich folks such as UN bureacrats getting blow jobs and food for sex from 12 year old girls and boys, or younger whatever is available, is the Normal state of humanity.

    A woman forced into prostitution because it is legal and safe and no worse than any other job, or get her benefits cut by the German bureacracy, faces economic destitution, social pressure to conform to the state’s needs, and a choice in name only. Just as a little girl faces a choice between that UN peacekeeping base or the other UN peacekeeping forces from another continent. One pays better than the other one. Does she have a choice, really? All humans have a choice, but this is a pretty crappy one.

    Cosmopolitanism then, as Kratman describes it, is a reaction to these harsh realities by turning to nihilism. Although the first step is more like fake liberalism, in that people want to do good but they don’t really know what “Good” is or how to do it. That’s one of the questions the Greeks spent quite some time wondering about. And much of the information was burned and destroyed in a snap compared to the time it took to create it.

    Say, if you want to do good or help the poor and save humanity from global warming or something. What do you then believe is the valid tool to accomplish such objectives? War is out. Use of force and intimidation is out, that is what people are trying to end. Nationalism is out because they see nationalism as either being Fascism or Western colonial powers trying to impose their rule on “other” sovereign nations.

    The main point then is that if humanity are all brothers and sisters, then wars should end and we should help each other correctly? However, fake multiculturalism doesn’t seek to understand more cultures, it seeks to divide up the differences and equalize them. Which is the opposite of understanding, instead it imposes an artificial framework on people’s cultures, whether they be Muslim, Persian, Japanese, American, or European. Same for fake cosmopolitanism. Instead of being open minded, they are extremely closed minded. Anything that involves war or justice or whatever that could actually lead to secure peace and prosperity, Book? Such things and people must be gotten rid of, is how the mind of a fake cosmopolitan works. As if you could simply get rid of things that differ from your worldview just because of an arbitrary whim or two.

    When all cultures andindividuals are equal, when a stranger in humanity is just as deserving of love and protection as a heroic man or woman fighting beyond human limits, a person starts to believe in nothing. This is connected directly with what I wrote on entropy and how it decays and destroys everything in time. It destroys, if you study the physics, by not erasing energy but by erasing energy’s usefullness. Instead of like fascism and other totalitarian systems, it doesn’t want to kill people so much as erase the differences between them. After all, if a heroic Marine is no better than the atrocity committing Ayrabs, then we are just one step closer to loving humanity because humanity will have no more differences between its members. You see how it goes, I hope. Entropy manifested in human tools.

    Kratman describes this more as an HIV infection that kills our immune system than the disease that directly kills us. It weakens us so that others, strong enough with faith in something, will do the job that HIV cannot or will not.

    True cosmopolitanism, however, is much harder and more worthwhile a goal. In order to bind humanity together, one cannot erase the differences for that would erase free will, as well the uniqueness of our evolution. As the Founding Fathers proved, you can create nationalism from the love of family, but you need more than that. Even things like greed can be used in the mix. The Founding Fathers hit upon what I call the metaphysical immaterial concepts. Things that exist regardless of whether humanity exists, or rather to be more precise, it exists so long as a sentient human exists. Sort of like the argument about “would God exist if humanity disappeared from existence”. Do we create God or did God create us? This concept, this entity that exists without physical form in a non-physical dimension, allows people to bind together as humans, rather than as people with a lot of differences and hatreds. However, these concepts have to be universal, or as far as universal as you can get with sentience in humanity. Here comes military science, Book. Military science otherwise known as the Art of War, when people had really poor logistics and math abilities, studies what is true of humanity since its inception. Using both deductive logic, if this is true then we will win the battle and deceive the enemy (objective reality tests deductive axiom), and inductive logic. (Inductive says, humanity has been at war since its beginning, so it must be true that humanity will always be at war or have war or have cycles of war and peace;useful but not exactly something that is the truth epistemologically speaking. It is true so long as humanity exists, since there can always come a future to prove the hypothesis, sometime eventually)

    Liberty and justice for all. Inalienable rights. Noble ideals, but many people have had noble ideals, Book. Communists, Utopians, Socialists, Democracies, intellectuals, etc. You need more than noble ideals. After all, do you have an inalienable right to speak your conscience if the Salafi Jihadists cut out your tongue and slice out the part of your brain that controls speech?

    When I say it has to be “universal”, I do not mean in the sense that it is ideologically universal or rather that people believe in it. No, rather I am speaking of using amoral familism and the genetic drive for survival of onself and one’s family, to fuel true cosmopolitanism. People are closed minded in one aspect, because they fear strange stuff since strange stuff tends to kill more often than regular and familiar stuff. Strangers in communities were not tolerated and seen with suspicion precisely because you never know if they are Salafis come with suicide bomb packs hidden in cars or just some peaceful traders. Best to be on your guard, the people back in the day said. People back in the day? Heck, People existing right now has found that securing the local community of “strangers” is what lead to Al Anbar getting a grip on attacks by AQI. So there is a proven genetic survival factor this kind of suspicion. However, it often leads to witch hunts or ethnic cleansing or various other civil wars and misery untold on earth.

    How do you then use such to create something that would increase human liberty for everyone then? Because when a person recognizes that you are fighting for his survival or with him as he fights for his survival, then there is a bond that is created. That famous Band of Brothers bond, the bond that war and misery forges that is as strong if not stronger than family and blood bonds. But you would only know of such possibilities, Book, if you had studied military history and military science. For such fields has been witnessing and studying the bonds that are forged in war and that could be used to train or create discipline in a fighting unit, for untold milleniums. Untold milleniums, Book. Far more lengthy a field of study than your average fake liberal talking about Global Warming and “social progressives in social democracies” or whatever. This new intellectual fruitcake stuff is no match for the ancients, except through treachery, which they got down pretty pat.

    This is how you erase petty differences between ignorant folks and cement them into something greater, like a nation or those United States. Yes, those United States rather than the United States. There was a time when people thought of the US as a band of States that were united through common blood and cause, by the Revolutionary War. The further blood shed in the Civil War, cemented the bond even further to THE United States. An entity that stands by itself, composed of all the people in it, devoted for the betterment of everyone in it, rather than just an enlite few that are part of an aristocratic family tradition as was true for the rest of the world back then. (and still is) People are clever enough or brainwashed enough by Leftist propaganda, to recognize that the bond of nationalism in Iraq isn’t as strong as the bond of nationalism inside the United States. (Although I don’t really think that the bond of Nationalism in the United States is as strong as people think it is, if only because people have devoted much time and energy to destroying US Nationalism) But that misses the point. Nationalism is created, it is created by forging bonds that supercede and build upon loyalty to one’s family, one’s close blood relations, one’s friends, one’s neighbors, one’s state, and one’s Country. Stalin was right, one death is a tragedy while one million is a statistic. People don’t really care about who dies or suffers so long as they don’t see their faces, names, or believe they have any blood relation with them. Humans can only grasp and empathize with around 100-200 close folks at any one time. A small company fits the bill. The residents of a building fits the bill when spread across many families. The passengers of Flight 93 fit the requirements. This is why America is seeing such distaste at Petraeus. Petraeus is not only NOT a blood relation to the progressive Leftists and their allies, but Petraeus is harming their cause, and their cause feeds their families. If Petraeus does what he does and wins, MoveOn would be hurt financially and that would affect their families, would it not. Ah, but people think or may say that Petraeus is protecting MoveOn. However, nobody said that amoral familism had to deal with long term survival of the family. All the lives that might be lost in Iraq, the US, or under Petraeus’ command? They don’t care, cause it ain’t their family at risk. America is at the mall, not at war, as people have attested to. How much more true do you think that this would be for MoveON? Let’s MoveOn to something that would benefit us and ours more, eh?

    Who has a better chance of surviving for long periods of time against violence and ill luck: the nation with all its resources, economic safeguards, and military might or the single nuclear family living on the edge of existence? History gives us the answers to that above all else. Even rich families don’t need much killing to be disappeared. Certainly that didn’t stop the Nazis or the Stalin secret police or Saddam’s folks. The family doesn’t have enough members to sustain itself in fighting for human liberty for themselves most of the time, let alone for others. But the nation, ah now that is a different thing. A nation allows petty minor local differences to be submerged in the greater representation and safety net that is present in the knowledge that an attack on one State in the US is an attack on ALL.

  6. Greg, you’re being foolish. I’m not saying we should go out and randomly hate people. I am saying, though, that when people have aligned themselves against us, demanded our slaughter, and acted on that demand, it’s demented to the point of suicide to pretend we’re all in this together. They have withdrawn themselves from the family of man and should be approached accordingly.

  7. Greg, you’re being foolish.

    Isn’t that what you pay him for?

  8. I like Mark Foley but duh ,huh ,asking us all to be red-neck macho feminists,cowboys,oil riggers,soldiers ,hunters (or was I stereotyping?)shoot first and ask questions later. Sorry thugs,it is a little more nuanced ,subtle and more sophisticated than his straight call a spade a spade talk .Folks you just gotta be more James Bond about it..You know take someone OUT while with a women,reading a book and sipping a martini (skaken only please)all at the same time. II doesn’t have to be all YAHOO FOLEY style., Come on a little class you people !

  9. swamp,
    You’re *hardly* even trying. I’ve dispatched a whole frickin regiment of subhuman rabid enemies with my left hand, while walking down the street with my ten year old daughter on my right, gently discussing with her all the beautiful butterflies fluttering about us. She never noticed even one of the dismembered corpses I left sprawled in our wake, so stylish and subtle was I. Now THAT’s doin it right!

    YAHOO FOLEY style, as in Mark Foley? This thug is trying like all heck to figger out what you mean. So far, I haven’t a clue.

    I used to think I asked my questions, answered them, and felt compelled by those answers to sometimes shoot. Now, thanks to swamp, I realize that simply by shooting, it is absolutely clear that I never asked any questions at all!

    If Atlas Shrugged,
    is he nothing but
    a filthy thug?
    I cannot say
    but at least it’s clear:
    he did not first ask questions.

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