From the summer of 2006.

An Irreversible Path to World War?

“Einstein,” I said to Two Tonys, “in a letter to Freud, indicated that war comes about when politicians aided by munitions makers and other war profiteers brainwash the masses via schools, the media, and the church. Freud agreed, and replied to Einstein that the ruling class use the illusion of nationalism to harness the destructive instinct of the masses.”
“Our destructive instinct is natural,” Two Tonys said. “According to my buddy Schopenhauer: man is the only animal which causes pain to others without any further purpose than just to cause it. The working class are sendin’ their sons and daughters to get maimed and ruined in the Middle East so rich motherfuckers like the owners of Boeing, Raytheon, Remington, and General Electric can get even richer.”
“It’s a dangerous game to play in this age of nukes,” I said. “The last world war came about from a big power, Nazi Germany, gobbling up its weaker neighbours. I don’t see much difference between the Nazis conquering Czechoslovakia and Poland, and the Bush clique invading Afghanistan and Iraq. Hitler created national security justifications for his aggrandizement. Bush used 9/11 as a pretext although the attackers were mostly Saudi Arabians linked to his financial backers, the bin Laden family, who he allowed to hurriedly leave the US after the attacks.”
“Politicians are trained to say whatever it takes. They’ll get up in Congress, and advocate bombin’ and shellin’, and the destruction of another race, when nothing’ is further from the truth.”
“I’m reading,” I said, “annual reports of defence manufacturers – Cobham, Umeco, Chemring, Meggitt, Ultra Electronics – and the common theme is that business is booming because of our peace-keeping missions. The peace our politicians talk about equals more bombs. And it’s not only the defence companies, look at Exxon Mobil’s recent $10 billion quarterly profit, one of the highest quarterly results for any publicly traded US company ever, and Royal Dutch Shell’s $7 billion. It’s clear who Iraq’s oil was seized for - and it wasn’t for the good of the public who are getting gouged.”
“Don’t forget Halliburton,” Two Tonys said. “That’s Cheney’s baby, and I wouldn’t be surprised if Dubya works there when he gets out of the White House.”
“The difference between the Nazis and the Bushites is that the Nazis, especially Goebbels, did a successful propaganda job on the public, and during their first four years they were actually an economic success, whereas here we’re teetering on the brink of economic disaster, and the government is conducting a war against the will of a good section of the public. Lafayette said that when the government violates people’s rights like this, insurrection becomes the most indispensable of duties. I’m not advocating the government be overthrown. I’m bringing that up to get your opinion.”
“The unwashed of America have been dumbed down,” Two Tonys said. “The average citizen has two cars, a TV in each room, a PC with Internet access, his daughter tap dances, his son plays soccer, he goes to church on Sunday, his workin’ life is invested in a pension. The average American has too much to lose. He ain’t gonna grab a pitchfork, run down the street, charge the castle, and guillotine the king his dukes and earls. He’s got a Saturday afternoon barbeque to go to, where he’ll drink Bud Light and talk about the game.”
“If the public is being manipulated into world war,” I said, “ - the world war that Churchill predicted would be over the world’s resources – is there nothing we can do about it? Are most of us as oblivious of the coming death on home soil as the Germans were when the Nazis began expanding? The passivity of the average American is astounding. Even Thomas Jefferson wrote that a little rebellion is as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical.”
“The closest thing here in the US was the Vietnam crisis,” Two Tonys said. "The country was on the verge of rebellion. That younger generation now have the things I just described. They got haircuts, got jobs, and rebellion now means smokin’ some weed every now and then. They are gonna do somethin’ though: they’re gonna elect Hilary Clinton.”
“But will that change anything?” I said. “Both parties answer to the same corporations and lobbyists. It’s an illusion. Left and right in the two-party system are shades of the same thing.”
“They need to dress members of Congress like racing car drivers, showin’ who’s sponsorin’ them,” Two Tonys said. “Imagine Condi Rice negotiatin’ for peace in the Middle East, emblazoned with logos of Boeing, Hughes, Citicorp, and Bank of America. The public’s gonna hafta wake up. The CEOs of these companies are rippin’ and tearin’ heads off, and shittin’ on people’s jugular veins.”
“If the German people had stopped the Nazi leaders maybe millions of people wouldn’t have died. My hope is that the current US aggression – as acknowledged by Milton Friedman in the Wall Street Journal – is reined in by legitimate means before the rest of us have to live with the consequences.”

I am interested in readers' comments on this subject. Before anyone brands me a leftist, I would like to point out that I have little faith in politicians of any party. My conclusion is based on my studies of economics and history. The Israel-Lebanon conflict seems to be part of the escalation. Is it any wonder that Iran wants into the mushroom-cloud business when a superpower is gobbling up its neighbours? What happens when China, Russia or India stop in to protect their resource interests around the Caspian? Isn’t Blair’s idea of sending a stabilisation force to Lebanon just a euphemism for the kind of Western expansion in the Middle East that’s stirring up the Moslem's, solidifying the Moslem Brotherhood, and leading us closer to resuming the ages-old war between the Christian and Moslem civilizations? When explosions start happening in American malls, will anyone stand up and blame the foreign policy of aggression implemented by our politicians?

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Copyright © 2006-2007 Shaun P. Attwood


Thane Eichenauer said...

Free will is out there, active as ever. I assume there is always a reversible path to world war (up until the bombs drop).

I think the average American and Englander are either opposed or indifferent to expanded wars of aggression. The only thing that keeps the government from engaging in one more war is the limitation of their keeping 51% of the elected legislature along with 51% of the orthodox media (TV/radio/newspaper) on message (fear the foreigner).

While I am a book person, I do think that a video on may well do more to prevent needless war than Ron Paul's reading list

Anonymous said...

The world powers are all in this together. The opressor and the oppressed. It is only that one hand is washing the other. The US is little more than a corporate whore for Israel. But hey, better them than us. This is the way it is supposed to happen...-Jose in San Diego.

Anonymous said...

It is a god-damned shame that Tony is in the slammer - he's a fucking genius.

I agree with him. And I figure we are fucked so long as the masses are so content to eat McDonald's, buy a couple mangoes on the way home, and act like sheep being lead to a slaughter.

It seems that thinking got outsourced - replaced by convenience.

Just desserts...painful ones, though. You stay in touch with him, man. He'll keep your ass on the straight and narrow.

joannie said...

I really think what's needed here is a statute of limitations on the generalization of anything, especially something as complicated as war. Hindsight is 20/20 as usual, and even then truth is hard to find.

But it seems agreed by all that Allied involvement in WWII was warranted. It was a sin of the highest order for people to close their eyes to the suffering of the Jewish people. How is it that America could be blamed for not paying attention then until it was almost too late and now blamed for supporting a strong Israel?

It seems all too easy to me to paint everything with a very broad brush. Iraq is not Vietnam. Total passivism is not the road to freedom. The thing we need to decide is, what is it? With great wealth comes great responsibility and many in the US take this very seriously. To lump every corporate entity, politician, soldier and citizen into one big box of stupid is an insult. There are still many intelligent and thinking people all over the world who try to make a difference in it, whose belief systems are powerful enough to sacrifice everything, and not to run planes into buildings or strap bombs on children, and I'm talking all sides of the political aisle and religious spectrum.

joannie said...

I'd like to offer an analogy upon thinking about all of this...something close to home-the prison system. Is it corrupt? Yes. Does the average person really want it? Not really. Is it being manipulated and used by government and companies to make money? Yes. But here's the rub-why does the prison system exist? Because people break the rules of civilized society due to their own free choice. How do we as a society deal with people who break the law, perpetrate crime on other citizens?

Did this whole comment on war totally ignore the possibility that it is a response to something? Say, human aggression, acts of terrorism? Again, I feel that to totally ignore international unwarranted aggression on nations is foolish, just as foolish as ignoring someone who shoots someone else? Does not the possibility exist that that person may shoot again if nothing is done? On the other extreme, there is the "eye for an eye" solution. Our court system doesn't do that. Neither do our soldiers.

Let's make this really close to home. My son murdered someone and then tried to commit suicide. How do I respond as a citizen? While I think our police force here is very lacking in certain ways, I was quite glad they responded at 2 in the morning to apprehend my son. What other decision could we make? Further, the justic system showed him mercy. I'm not going to complain about his sentence nor that a justice system and a prison exist. Finally, I became aware of the system because of personal experience and opted to make a difference if I could, to go inside, see what could be done. I am also clearly aware that average taxpayers feed and house my child. I will not call them ignorant for supporting the system.

I do not support war without cause, but people do evil things. How do we respond as a global community?

Bill from KC said...

I would hardly say that America is on the brink of economic disaster, as Two Tony's said: “The average citizen has two cars, TV in each room, a PC with Internet access, his daughter tap dances, his son plays soccer, he goes to church on Sunday..."
What he didn't add, is the fact that most of us are so busy working shitty jobs that pay half of what they used to in 70's inflation adjusted dollars (at least those in the lower or lower-middle classes), trying to pay off huge amounts of student loans, credit card debt, medical bills, on top of the traditional mortgage and car payment,insurence, etc, there isn't enough time to really give more than 2 seconds worth of a damn as to what is happening outside our own narrow lives.

Especially too, there is the constant barrage of how generous we are as Americans, and how lucky we are to live in this country, instilled in us from a young age and bombarded at us from every mainstream media outlet. It takes alot of time and studying to find out what is really happening, what our foriegn policy has actually been up to since WWII, specifically in the 80's for places like Nicaragua, El Salvador, Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan. I mean, ask the average person what something like Habeus Corpus is, (Is that in Texas?) those moldly old first ten amendments, (is that from the bible?) and how globalization operates. (Fedex service?) Hell, even in college macro economics at the University of Colorado, they still try to impress upon you the idea that dumping subsidized commodities on a foriegn nation is good for them, good for the consumer, and good for their economy.

My point is, with so much absolute crap and misinformation flying around, it takes a fairly major effort to get it sorted out into a coherent picture. People just don't have the time, inclination, interest, and certainly not in this country, widespread access to quality educational institutions.

Bottom line- until the economy does crash, and I'm not talking $100 oil, I am talking $15 a gallon gas, not a few thousand housing foreclosures, but a 50% drop in average home values, not the Fed raising interest rates a half point, but a 10% rise on the 30 year T-bond yield, things are going to keep going on as merrily as ever, especially with the rise of ever better anti-depressant medications.

I really think it will take an event on the scale of California falling into the Pacific ocean before the mainstream turns off the tube and starts looking for real answers.

Anonymous said...

"people willing to trade their freedom for temporary security deserve neither and will lose both"..................transcribed by a fellow Widnesian here in the US.

Anonymous said...

People aren't the only species to inflict harm on others for fun. My mother used to own a cat that would bring mice into the bathtub where they couldn't run away. The next morning the tub and much of the bathroom would be covered in blood and guts. That cat was one sick vicious killer.

Anonymous said...

Specifically addressing post questions:
Iran's interest in nuclear weapons is not disturbing in and of itself. The fact that the leaders of Iran have a total and unequivocal hatred of the US is a much more important focus. Who controls the "button" if they do get the ability?
The only US involvement in the Middle East that is easily questionable is the recent 2003 Iraq war (the invasion in the search for weapons of mass destruction). The occupation afterward was and still is necessary to prevent the very real possibility that enemies of the US would wind up with power in the absence of Saddam. The US is not conquering nations around Iran in the real sense of the word. Whatever side effects exist they are secondary to the primary purpose (such as defense of an ally or pursuit of enemies).
How would we avoid that age old war between religions (and the predominant coutries representing them)? Encourage people to become free of religious bonds. Discourage extremism and excessive "bible thumping" for example. Encourage rational thought and critical thinking.
The US already has the world trade center events as reminders of the power politicians have to shape views of the countries they represent. Giving them more power is not the answer. The Patriot Act has done more harm to freedom than it has done good.
In ending, citizens of the US and potential future residents/citizens must realize that their support of the right to bear arms is very important. The slow erosion of the power of the people is no different in the end than a sudden power grab. It is this fundamental right to protect oneself that has allowed the US to survive for centuries.