Monday, August 10, 2009


The classic definition of chutzpah is the man who kills both of his parents and then asks for mercy because he is an orphan.

But how about a country which blocks intervention to stop a massacre and then uses the ensuing slaughter as an excuse to invade other countries? And then tries to overthrow established international law in order to continue expanding its empire, under the guise of humanitarian intervention?

The United States, like all other countries, dresses its aggression in pretty words and excuses. They used to "defend democracy", but that was beginning to lose its luster, as the blatancy of US support for brutal dictatorships and overthrow of elected governments gave the lie to its occasional professed concern for democracy.

So now we have concern for human rights and ethnic minorities. This should be laughed off, as the US has the greatest income disparity of all industrialized countries, more prisoners than any other country and the descendants of our original people who live on reservations in South Dakota have a life expectancy of 58 years, while many African Americans, descendants of slaves, live in slums in conditions of extreme poverty.

A country which holds prisoners for years without charge and openly tortures can choose to invade other countries to uphold human rights?

It's absurd. But Americans are raised from birth with the belief that we are the best country on Earth, and ingest the idea of American exceptionalism with our mother's milk, or the BGH laced formula our babysitters feed us with our BPA lined bottles. As we celebrate the anniversaries of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, note that the majority of Americans have no moral qualms to this day about the morality of incinerating hundreds of thousands of civilians.

Europe used to have brutal wars because of moral concerns, mostly about those who weren't the right Christians, or who weren't Christian at all, so could be burned, flayed, hung or butchered with God's approval. The Treaty of Westphalia of 1648 put an end to that, at least in Europe, and established the concept of national sovereignty.

The United Nations was founded to uphold national sovereignty, as well as human rights. World War 11 showed what could happen when a powerful country used human rights (Germans living in other countries who were supposedly oppressed) as an excuse to invade other countries. The United States believes that the UN should rubberstamp and provide a figleaf for US invasions, and when the UN refused to do so in Yugoslavia and Iraq, the US came up with the idea of "responsiblity to protect". (Translation: "Protect" those who live in countries with assets the US covets.)

The absurdity of bombing people into democracy is widely recognized, so now we are told that women are treated horribly in Afghanistan, so we must kill them in order to free them. I guess that's why the US has bombed so many wedding parties, because women have no rights in marriage in Afghanistan. At least, now they don't. They did in 1978, until the US spent billions to overthrow the progressive government and replace it with religious fundamentalists.

A country whose leaders hold hands with the religious fundamentalists of Saudi Arabia, (a country in which women can't vote or drive and which holds Friday beheading rituals), has absolutely no standing to decide whether other countries are worthy enough to escape bombing and invasion.

The US is taking us back to the Dark Ages, when torture and moral-based slaughters were accepted as God's will.

Stand up for the reforms of 1648!!


ryk said...

Well said. The blind hypocrisy of Empire at work. How much of our resources will we expend trying to maintain superpower status?

David G said...

A great post, wage laborer!

If only your words could go into every home then real change might take place in your country.

America needs more people like you!

John Steinsvold said...

An Alternative to Capitalism?

The following link, takes you to a "utopian" article, entitled "Home of the Brave?" which I wrote and appeared in the Athenaeum Library of Philosophy:

John Steinsvold