An alternate history Iraq parallel
Posted by aogFriday, 21 January 2005 at 18:37 TrackBack Ping URL

I got in to another long and pointless argument recently, but it did bring up some interesting points that didn’t fit in that conversation.

One is that the caliphascists in Iraq are now focusing on killing and intimdating election workers and candidates, a technique that was used in this country by the Ku Klux Klan. Among the chattering classes, the KKK is considered an archetypical evil, yet the caliphascists have managed to avoid anything like the same taint even tough the KKK never did anything as brutal as the things the caliphascists are doing in Iraq. The suggestion that the human shields go back and protect polling places is a wonderful one, as it perfectly illuminates this point.

On a relate theme, I was asked whether I would join a resistance against a successful Chinese invasion of the USA. I responded that if the USA had been under a brutal Communist regime and China was a rich, liberal democracy, then I’d be a collaborator (presuming I hadn’t escaped to China already). It’s an odd sort of patriotism to fight, kill and die for whatever government last happend to rule your country even when it’s clear that that government was a terrible disaster and much worse than the occupation. Yet that’s what many seem to expect of Iraqis. In fact, as an intelligent observer would expect, those fighting are either members of the former ruling class trying to re-instate their privileged position or people who expect to become the ruling class if they win.

An excellent analogy for the Lefties would be a South Africa where apartheid was toppled by an invasion instead of a willing transfer of power. The question answers itself of whether the Left and Old Media would be so sympathetic to armed members of the apartheid government conducting civilian reprisals to bring themselves back to power. Would such people be called “insurgents”? Would their violence be blamed on the presence of American troops?

But here, I suppose, we seen the essential racialism of the modern Left. It has a very “blood and soil” feel to it, where people are expected to fight against their own interests, and that of their nation, to maintain the racial / ethnic purity of their government. I don’t understand that, but then again I’m an American, a citizen of a nation of ideas, not bloodlines.

Comments — Formatting by Textile
Jeff Guinn Saturday, 22 January 2005 at 09:11


The character and conduct of your “pointless argument” only cemented in my mind the essential, irrevocable, difference between those on the left and the right.

That is, to be on the left requires being right-brained, hence practically incapable of rigorous analysis.

Conversely, those on the right are left-brained, and, therefore, constitutionally inclined to rigorous analysis.

In particular, I liked:

As for resisting an invasion of China, if the USA had a repressive Communist regime and China was a rich, liberal democracy I’d help China out against the resistance, presuming I hadn’t already moved to China

As it highlighted how out of context, and consequently empty, their argument from analogy was.

Anyway, full points. And congratulations for getting out of the conservative weblog echo chamber.

Annoying Old Guy Saturday, 22 January 2005 at 12:57

Thanks. I suspect that it’s one more aspect of cocooning, where one is rewarded for the most over the top rhetorical flourish rather than fact based argument.

It was also kind of funny to be accused of being mean and scornful. At work, that would have been considered mild warmup. Any sort of real technical discussion was far more vicious. Nothing delighted the gang more than finding some obvious flaw in a person’s statement and then ripping it to shreds. It certainly encouraged a high level of both precision and evidence. It also made misrepresentation a heinous offense, which is why I find that far more rude and uncivil than sharp pointy arguments.

Jeff Guinn Sunday, 23 January 2005 at 19:26


Thanks. Now you have me doing it.

aog Sunday, 23 January 2005 at 20:05

Hey now, those are my soft targets!

End of Discussion