07 February 2009

A Little Help????

I got this question from a reader:

Sometimes I get a little confused and need a little help, and I'm asking you for it. There's part of me that has a very tender heart and just weeps at things, and I need a voice of common sense, so help me here.

"Obama, speaking to about 200 House Democrats at their annual retreat at the Kingsmill Resort and Spa, dismissed Republican attacks against the massive spending in the stimulus.

"What do you think a stimulus is?" Obama asked incredulously. "It's spending — that's the whole point! Seriously."

Ok, now this is really dumb, but THAT (as silly as this is) makes me feel a little sorry - I mean, he seems so stupid, he obviously doesn't know what he's doing at all.

BUT - and this is where I'm running into trouble - I remember what you just posted about this guy making it so that all the charges were DROPPED on the bombers of the USS Cole. And THAT makes me say "Evil." Not just stupid and ignorant, but evil.

At the same time, even that might be ignorance, but - what do YOU think? I'm a cynic, I want to say evil, and I'm willing to accept that we don't quite know yet whether he's stupid or evil, but that Cole thing? That smacks of evil to me.

Maybe we just don't know for sure yet. But I don't want to give the benefit of the doubt where none is due either.

Let me know what you think. Thanks.

My reply:

I don't think he's evil. Stupid, naive, and misguided, but I truly don't think he's evil.

You know how they say that good intentions pave the way to Hell, well every misguided government program has a well meaning idiot behind it. As far as the Cole goes, the idiots truly believe that war is bad and killing is bad and it would be better to bare your own throat to the assassin's blade than to fight back. I don't understand that thinking, to me anyone who thinks that can't have more than two operating brain cells and those cells must not have spoken to each other in years.

Anyway, they think that the military tribunals are somehow unfair and the terrorist suspects will be railroaded; that the use of waterboarding is torture and any confession extracted under torture is inadmissible; and so any future trials need to be held under the aegis of the US courts system. These are the people who elected Obama, he made them a promise, and he is honoring it.

Obama made the call that any ongoing trials be halted for a review, and the top dog judge in charge of said trials made it happen. That doesn't mean that charges cannot be brought at a later date, and in fact I believe they will be, which is why I posted Justice, Interrupted rather than Justice, Denied. However, I also believe that the new charges will be made in civil court and any evidence gathered by use of torture (yes, I believe that waterboarding is a mild form of torture, but I also believe that if it works it should be used for a wide variety of reasons) will not be admitted. In other words, I believe the terroristic son of a bitch will walk, and I truly hope that someone from those dead 17 Sailor's family is standing by with a scoped rifle when he pops out of the courthouse.

But, getting back to the people out there who truly believe it is better to submit to the assassins blade than to fight back: I cannot believe these people to be evil, but the fact is they are protected by the very system they protest against. In their worldview there is no "violent but protective (US Marine) vs violent and predatory (common street punk)", there is only "violent" and since all violence is bad, all who engage in violence is also, by definition, bad. These are the people that Orwell was talking about when he said they slept peacefully because of dangerous men ready to do violence on their behalf.

(More of this here, where Kevin does a much better job explaining it.)

To me the mark of evil is the intent to do harm against those who have not done , nor intend to do, harm against you. Ergo, Arafat, evil; Bin Ladin, evil; any one who purposely uses a religion as an excuse to do violence, evil; but anyone (Obama) who assumes passivity will prevent violence is merely stupid, not evil, and should be put somewhere in a padded cell where the banging of their heads against the floor won't cause permanent injury. The intent for harm against innocents is the key.

The refusal to protect oneself is suicidal, but in my view not evil. I just do not choose to join them in their suicide, and so I will defend myself. If that means I save their lives in the process, and that they fear and hate me for it, then so be it. They must draw breath to express that fear and hatred. And since they will do no harm, their hatred is impotent.

I don't understand these people; in my mind they don't have the faintest shred of logic and they will be the playthings of whatever master will have them. I will not be a slave, not to any man or master. At the same time they do not understand me, but they can't do anything about it. I, and my brothers in arms, remind them that there is a black force of evil in this world, that it is not all fuzzy bunnies and warm sunny days. This scares them, and I believe that is why they hate me and those like me.

I am strong enough to bear their hate. I refuse to bear their burden.

I hope that helps.

UPDATE: A second reader asks, "At which point does ignorance become evil?"

I can only answer that ignorance becomes evil when the outcome is determined without a doubt to be harmful to the innocent, and yet the decision is not made to change course.

If, as I believe will happen, the closing of Gitmo and the induction of these terror suspects into the US Criminal Courts system results in the terror suspects being let free (even though the military has plenty of evidence to convict if the military tribunals had been allowed to continue), resulting in these same terror suspects end up killing more Americans in more terror attacks; and the decision is not made to revert back to military tribunals that would result in removing these terrorists from circulation permanently; then evil is present.

I say this because at that point it should be clear that the path that was chosen was incorrect, and the refusal to correct it will lead to more harm being done to more innocents. Refusing to correct the mistake is a conscious decision that will lead to the harming of innocents. Therefore, the intent to harm innocents (through inaction) has been achieved.


Steve said...

Very well put, my friend.

Larry said...

Thanks Steve.

Of course Reader # 2 still thinks I'm being too lenient.

This is the same guy that says Limbaugh, Hannity and all the rest are OK for a bunch of liberals ;-)

OK, maybe I made that last part up...