Re: WAR: appropriate first use (was: If we do get Afghanistan...)

From: Robert J. Bradbury (
Date: Sat Nov 24 2001 - 23:41:39 MST

On Sat, 24 Nov 2001, Eliezer S. Yudkowsky wrote:

> One also recalls our media's eternal use of the term "strongman" to
> describe Slobodan Milosevic in order to quietly skip over the fact that
> Milosevic was elected.

Hmmmmm... I'm probably more familiar with this than most people on
the list. Its pretty generally accepted that most of the former
Soviet republics are run by "democratically" elected people who
use a fair amount of "strongman" tactics to engineer the election
results. Belorussia is probably the worst, but the Ukraine and
even the central Asian republics that we are so friendly with
right now are pretty suspect. Russia is suprisingly better
with its greatest shortcoming (at least in recent years) being
a tendency towards censorship of anti-government press. (And
the fact that they still haven't really reformed the Justice

I suspect the point may revolve around people who come to power
through democtratic processes in *very* bad economic situations.
Those situations *may* give them opportunities to justify
"emergency" powers that eliminate the checks and balances
of a democracy.


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