We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
A Pattern of Suicidality from the NYT (and the Left in general)
This time, about Avian Flu. A quote from an excellent and well-researched piece by Miller at TCS:
"It is not surprising, therefore, that commentaries about avian flu often miss the mark. For example, a New York Times editorial, “The Flu Moat,” decried wealthy countries’ “me, first” attitude toward a possible pandemic of H5N1 avian flu, because “[t]he best hope of stopping a pandemic, or at least buying time to respond, is to improve surveillance and health practices in East Africa and Asia, where one would probably begin.” "
Great idea. Let's get the US and the UN to reconstruct Asian civilization from the ground up, before we worry about the bird flu! No doubt our tender concern would be welcomed with open arms.
The NYT, echoing the societal-suicide themes of the Left, feels compelled to adopt a passive stance towards threats of all sorts. The Left wanted to stay out of WW2 until Germany invaded their precious totalitarian Russia. It was "Better Red than Dead" and "Ban the Bomb" during the Cold War. With crime, it was "root causes" not enforcement. With terror, we get the "root causes" thing again - good idea - let's offer Al Zarquawi free therapy. Do I hear "Better Islamic than Dead" yet? And guns in the house? Forget it - "guns go boom." With immigration, it's "don't enforce the law." With Al Quaida wiretaps, it's "Let's stop wiretapping terrorists." I could go on and on. And it always turns out to be wrong.
Perhaps Americans should all just do a Jim Jones deal, or march cheerfully into the gas chamber?
What is this remarkably consistent pattern of self-destructive passivity in the face of danger all about? People used to talk about "liberal guilt" (the psychotically grandiose and/or solipsistic notion that everything is ultimately our fault), and maybe it is that for some people. More commonly today, people talk about "liberal anger": an anger coming from God knows where which is self-directed. Some shrinks think it comes from a "fraidy cat" mentality. Our Maggie's Farm Analyst generously opines that it is about "denial." Others, like Horowitz (who ought to know) assert that the Left contains an anarchistic impulse, deriving from the fantasy that The Revolution will be more quickly born out of chaos than by the stepwise stealthy method that has been going on since the 1930s.
My feeling is that a society that doesn't have the confidence or the will to confront and address dangers to its well-being and traditions doesn't deserve to survive. But we do. I am in favor of walls, moats, guns - whatever it takes.
At the risk of being characterized as humorless, obsessive, and generally not cute, I have to say that I am sick of people using suicidality as a metaphor. It is a vile affliction of mind, body and spirit that crushes sufferer and those near them alike. I'm glad you don't rant on about the breast cancer of the moderates or the erectile dysfunction of the right wing Republicans, or it would become immediately plain how one should not use and reuse a metaphor that was at best a tissue, something for one-time use, and not especially effective at that...
Using it so often to characterize the left is just plain dumb, anyway. About as dumb as those who used to attribute the Kennedy brothers' fascination with rockets and the space program to their fascination with certain body parts and activities.
As someone who agrees often with you, I still object to your dismissing your opponents so callously. You are a Christian. Rememember the passages in the NT about seeking the lost, bringing a sinning brother to repentance, reforming him. Saving his life in the name of the One who saved ours. If someone is genuinely suicidal they are not saved from the brink except by patience,care, gentle exhortation and appeals to all they still hold dear, holy. There is an unholy glee to your descriptions of your political opponents. Remember, we are all miserable sinners in need of God's grace.