From: "Pat Fallon" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
> No. Nor do I think a group of twenty fanatics decided to get on board some
> airliners, hijack them, and ram the WTC and the Pentagon because we are "a
> shining beacon of freedom" as Bush said.
Bush was referring to the freedom enjoyed in the US compared to the repression
of the Taliban and similar regimes (obviously). The religious fanatic
hijackers did what they did because they were sick -- infected by the brain
disease called religion.
> To take one past example, the US helped replace the popularly supported
> Prime Minister of Iran, installed and propped up a dictator, the Shah, who
> ruled Iran with an iron fist for 25 years. When he was finally overthrown,
> the Iranians stormed the US embassy and took hostages. They hated the US for
> what we had done to them. Not because we are a shining beacon of freedom.
> They didn't take hostages or storm the embassys of other countries. Why?
Some Iranians hate the US (but not all Iranians do so). Similarly, some
Germans hated the US for what we had done to them in the 1940s (even though
they asked for it, and deserved what they got). Some Japanese hated the US for
what we had done to them in the 1940s (even though they asked for it, and
deserved what they got). The Iranians, like the Germans and the Japanese, will
probably come around in due course.
> The motives arn't hidden, just unmentioned in most of the hysterical media
> commentary. IMHO America should practice free trade with all, and entangling
> alliances with none. We should get out of the business of creating and
> propping up monarchies, micomanaging world affairs with military
> interventions and embargoes. If an oil company wants to business with a
> sultan and later finds their investments threatened with nationalization or
> seizure, that is the price of doing business with such people, and that
> price should be reflected in the cost of that oil, so we can all make
> rational choices.
We can't all make rational choices because we're not all rational.
If everyone were rational, we would all agree on how to conduct this kind of
business, or we'd simply put it to a vote. Entangling alliances are a
nuisance, but that's what we pay politicians to handle. You say oil companies
have to pay the price of dealing with sultans who nationalize, and I say the
sultans should live up to their contracts or the sultans will have to pay the
price of their dishonesty and aggression, and that price is reflected in the
cost of US economic security, so everyone who wants to can join the modern
civilized world, despite despotic sultans and religious fanatics who try to
subvert and sabotage the free world. The bottom line is, it really doesn't
matter why fanatics hate the West, because Western civilization is more
resilient and robust than the hatred of fanatics, and we'll prevail no matter
what sick and wrong and ugly schemes they try.
--- --- --- --- ---
Useless hypotheses, etc.:
consciousness, phlogiston, philosophy, vitalism, mind, free will, qualia,
analog computing, cultural relativism, GAC, Cyc, Eliza, cryonics, individual
uniqueness, ego, human values, scientific relinquishment
We move into a better future in proportion as science displaces superstition.
This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Sat May 11 2002 - 17:44:13 MDT