Tuesday, February 22, 2011
Look Down, America
What to Make of Fidel?
I heard that Ann Coulter approves of Ron Paul's domestic politics but doesn't pay any attention to his views on International affairs, because she is afraid he might be convincing. I have somewhat similar reactions when I read a particularly convincing argument from someone whose view I know to be "leftist". I generally have to tell myself that although their arguments are persuasive, progressives are economically ignorant and sociologically naive; victims of emotional rhetoric and limited exposure to how real people cope with life's problems. I've been wanting to write an essay touching on these matters for some time, but afraid to take this hurdle, because the facts are that I have a very limited education (B.A. - PoliSci), was an indifferent student anyway, and because, although I love humanity in the abstract, I detest many of the individuals I actually meet, and avoid them in fact. I have even less than average exposure to human nature. Yet, somehow I persist in the notion that my views are more informed and realistic than, for instance, Noam Chomsky. I truly don't know how I can be aware my own deficiencies and remain so unshakeable in many of my beliefs. Romantic existentialism? Cognitive dissonance? Karl Pilkingtonism?
So I obviously don't strongly feel that I know more about politics and human nature than Fidel Castro, in fact, quite the opposite; he is intelligent, well-read and informed on current affairs, and although in a 50-year bubble, of sorts, having to be the Decider of Cuba and undoubtably surrounded by yes-men, he was aided by the same heuristic that I've come to use - "When in doubt, assume the Yankees are lying". Try it! It works every time. Wonder about WMD's? Colin Powell says they're real. Who killed Kennedy? The Warren commission says it wasn't the CIA. Is Goldman Sachs a bunch of crooks? Congress gave them billions. Is Libya being set up for a NATO takeover? Hillary says it isn't. Et-fucking-cetera. Pretty cool, huh? This is really the key to International affairs. "Assume the Yanks are Lying. AYL.
That's why it's so satisfying to read Fidel on Counterpunch - Oil Grab, Does Nato Plan to Occupy Libya?
Maybe naive good intentions outstrip common sense where some interventionists are concerned, but watch out: the Libyan slaughter is creating an opening for those who would have liked to stage-manage the Egyptian and Tunisian revolutions to impose some “control” on unrest in the region. A Libyan intervention will be the first step toward putting an end to all this messy indigenous rebellion, so the task of proper, American-led “democratization” can resume. Considering the interests at stake, I expect the cries for intervention to grow very loud very quickly."
I've mentioned how much I love Counterpunch, even though I seriously disagree with almost every one of their writers (except Paul Craig Roberts who is sui generis) in most respects. I also happen to agree with Stanislov Mishin at Mat Rodina about 99% of the time who is a reactionary Orthodox Russian and likely a KGB mouthpiece. It is so strange and a little exciting that I can agree with so many different thinkers from all points on the political continuum, and it's a constant reminder that almost everything I know is wrong. The internet has opened my eyes; almost nothing is "true" but the path is clear if one knows the mantra - Assume the Yanks are Lying. and the Brits, Israelis, Europe, probably Japan and all the other "Yanks". It's a western disease, really; Sun-Tsu makes lying a high good, with the unspoken idea that one knows the actual truth, but the Brits perfected it and Americans have made it an art-form by not only internalizing but instinctualizing it. Apparently actually believing the totality of lies makes it's own reality, like Wile E. Coyote walking on air until he looks down. Look down, America.