Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Cowardice as Foreign Policy

There was a story that circulated some years back about thugs who attacked a woman on the streets of Brooklyn. No one tried to stop the crime in the making; no one said anything nor did anything other than watch or turn away. The story was important as an barometer of the moral stature of our society. Many thought it was an outrage that no one could think of anything to distract the thugs or offer the woman encouragement in her battle. Everyone except for the victim (and she may have been) was a moral coward in this situation.

This is not to say that it was their duty to get into the fray. It wasn't. But there are many things that could be done when a life and death struggle of an innocent person with a thug is happening that would have worked to stop their crime. I guess the onlookers could explain away their passiveness as "I didn't want to meddle." Would anyone accept that explanation?

So I see the moral character of Obama clearly now. He's a coward. He has so many opportunities to stand for freedom, for democracy and give encouragement to the millions of people in Iran and around the globe who want it. But did he. No. Not a drip. His remarks would just as soon support a dictatorship - as if the people would want that which they obviously don't - or a democracy. Sovereignty to Obama means whoever is leading the country regardless of how he got there or how he maintains his control. Obama doesn't choose to display any distinctions in this area. Hmmm. I wonder why?

Hannah Arendt, noted author of The Life of the Mind and The Origins of Totalitarianism, attended the Nazi war trials. She said she was amazed how ordinary and thoughtless these handmaidens to atrocity were. "Not my job." "Not my worry." "I didn't know." No concern about life and what was happening at all.

This is Obama. He doesn't get it and he is thoughtless when it comes to important values. Moral cowardice packaged as seeming "fairness' is our foreign policy. I know this because I have seen it before. He bypassed opportunities to stand for real freedom, rather than give it lip service for the believers back home, in Europe and in South America.

And he doesn't stand for it here either. When dealing with Americans, he becomes the bully. He negates contracts as if they mean nothing for their owners and the rule of law only to give the benefits of the spoils of his winning in November to his supporters. He plans to summarily fire an IG who is investigating fraud and theft in a particular government program that he wants to use to benefit his supporters. He forced banks to take money so he could get control of them when they didn't need it or want it. This list is getting very long. The gays are chafing and the doctors are next in line.

He's not passive at home. He's too directed for that. Ask yourself what he is up to.

Overseas, he is a wuss. At home he is a thug. Always, he is a master manipulator and unless you are good an disentangling what he says, you think it sounds good. My assessment is that it is all a very, very toxic waste.

Anyone who wants to hear his rhetoric like it is the voice of God is free to do so. He always is quick to have the lamb lay down with the lion and the tides smooth out. I expect him to advocate creationism if he thinks it will get him a vote.

A friend got so excited about the demonstrations in Iran because she felt it was because of Obama's Cairo speech. Maybe, but I don't think so. It's not likely that a speech, especially one as tepid and "beautiful" as he delivered, a little over a week before an election could alter it and move millions to march in the streets.

I've never heard that Muslims are committed to getting along or world peace. Have you? I've heard that if you are a non-Mulsim, you have one of three choices: death, slavery or second class status. That's it. Whereas Americans hear Obama in a Christian framework, I don't think Muslims do.

How about this idea? Could two democratic countries flanking Iran have anything to do with it? Whereas before, Iran was one of three dictatorships in that subregion of the Mideast - Iraq, Afghanistan and Iran -now it is the only one. Hmm. Can't consider that one. It's associated with none other than the hated Bush.

Rationality is not a strong suit with many Americans. Unquestioned feelings and finding someone to follow are. This tells me something about them, not something about the truth or rightness of Obama's words.

To get to that, one must think. But most would not know where to start. Opinions: 100; Valid conclusions 0.


EllenL said...

I agree anything Mr Obama says is likely to be too vague to interprete and if it isn't he is likely to contradict it soon after. Is this cowardice? I'm not sure. It may be only manipulation and bad premises.

When people really believe in the good of the community over the rights of the individual, they do strange and destructive things. Obama may actually be such a dreamer and so badly mislead by his bad ideas that he is not stupid but rather very dangerous. His virtues make him more dangerous.

The answer: find explicit principles that lead to a better situation for actual human beings. But how do we get the community to listen and change their premises?

principlex said...

Cowardice is when one does not act for a value. As President he swore to uphold the Constitution of the United States of America and that is the most explicit freedom document on the planet. I hold him to the standard of what he swore to do. He didn't do it. He's a coward.

One could argue that freedom is not his value. If that be the case he should not be our President. To go ahead and falsely swear makes him a liar.

I consider his word worthless for this reason and many others. He's thoroughly immoral in my book. As far as I can tell, he's all show and no go - except to destroy values and particularly the value of political freedom to human life.

Maybe this explains why so many of the people he wanted to work for him had not paid their taxes and by that action not have the moral authority that they would if they did what the rest of us have to do. Either he could care less or he has no moral compass nor see the value of moral authority. He's relying on the fact that "I won" is all he needs to accomplish what he wants to do. I say reality will prove him wrong and no matter if people still like him, that is not what makes the difference. They may give him the power, but they can't give him the knowledge of how to cause the results that all, except those that would destroy this country, want.

EllenL said...

He is a liar and an opportunitist. He says contradictory things and sometimes changes his statements when the audience changes. The Oath was a ritual that would not mean to him what it does to you or me and he may see the Constitution differently.

I only wish he was all talk and no go. He is doing things that at best will be costly for decades and at worst could destroy significant sectors of our economy and enslave some professions.

It is still true that people in power who are committed to actions that we know to be destructive but they think are good are very dangerous. Immoral perhaps, wrong certainly, but not necessarily cowards.

Let's hope that the rest of the country is not so cowardly as to keep his cohorts in power for long. Representatives and a third of the Senate are up for election in 2010. And the Courts will need to look at his actions to decide if they are Constitutional.

Robert said...

Yet he exudes pride after killing a fly on national television...and even brags about it. You have to ask, why is that a source of pride for the man?

principlex said...

I'm judging him by the standard that is the basis of our country.

I will grant you that he is not a coward when it comes to turning our Constitution upside down, rolling over agreements as worthless, and wrecking the basis of civil society. For this he has a lust.

But you notice that he keeps a lot of people morally disarmed because they hear something in what he says they think is good. They are shallow and do not look at the implications of his words and actions. They do not get how they, by granting him approval, are cutting the ground from under themselves.

I say hold him to account for his own words when he swore to uphold the Constitution of the United States and let the cards fall where they may.

I'm sure you and I have a much better apprehension of the full meaning of those words in the Constitution than most people - since we have studied the matter philosophically. He knows how to play the populous like a violin and has mastered it - to the detriment of the rights of individual men and the agreements in the form of contracts.

principlex said...

Ellen, you have to stand somewhere.

Further, when he speaks for our country, are we to judge him from the standard of his speaking for the country and the basis of its existence or him personally?

I have the experience of suffering as a battered wife must suffer. My "husband" gives me nothing. He beats me up at home and uses me however he wants in public. Mostly he belittles me and apologizes that I am not the cool hip intelligent person that he is. He thinks they should get that he is "The Man" and that they can't count on me.

True to the battered wife syndrome, I allow him to keep this story going because I won't call him to account and kick his butt to the curb.

He's bold and brash a lot of the time, but is this a man of courage? In my opinion, granting him that is a shallow interpretation of that virtue.

principlex said...

Although I do not agree with some of the specifics of this video, I do agree with it's basic premise. Stand up and speak in favor of freedom or be moved to the dustbin of history as a moral weakling.