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Did Socrates say "Know Thyself", or was he misunderstood, as all are. Show Thyself is all we can do. The knowing is unknowable.  

I am filled with joy.  It can't be helped.  

Became a Farmer, Builder, Musician, Tank Commander, Librarian, Lawyer and Minister. I have failed at many things. And now retired.  Filled, just filled, with Joy. 

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Karl Rowe is a terrorist and we offer "therapy"....

Rosa Brooks wrote a brilliant review of three books by four distinguished authorities in our society who have addressed the 9/11 attacks. Brooks is counsel to the Open Society Institute and a law professor at Georgetown University, as well as a columnist.
In June 2000, Karl Rove came up with this sound-bite: "Conservatives saw what happened to us on 9/11 and said 'We will defeat our enemies'. Liberals saw what happened to us and said 'we must understand our enemies'."
Brooks is heartsick. Despite the five years that have passed since 9/11, "we're nowhere near defeating our enemies -- in large part because we've never made the slightest effort to understand them." Brooks is too willing to think Rove/Bush/Cheney have simply erred, or that they lack understanding. Big oops. No, Ms. Rosa, the cabal KNOWS what they are doing. They are billionaires now. They never tried to defeat our enemies. They ARE our enemies.
Brooks summarizes three seminal documentations:
(1) Louise Richardson, is a Harvard Dean, who was raised Catholic in northern Ireland during bad times. In WHAT TERRORISTS WANT, she distills decades of research on terrorist movements and concludes that the Bush/Cheney policy is fatally flawed. Although terrorists are filled with invective and hatred, they are not "insane". Most terrorists believe themselves to be altruistic and noble, Davids fighting Goliaths, to reference an ancient Semitic standard. The rhetoric of "evil" and the war in Iraq coupled with genuine abuses of prisoners are tactics that backfire, not only giving Osama bin Laden more recruits, but legitimacy in the "complicit communities" required to sustain them. This point is obvious, but our administration is oblivious.
(2) Thomas H. Kean and Lee H. Hamilton are two members of the 9/11 Commission who are genuine leaders. {I hope the members of the Commission find their way into public office to replace the scoundrels who have stolen our elections.} In WITHOUT PRECEDENT the Commission documents, blow by blow, how the Bush administration blocked the Commission at virtually every step. At the end of the struggle to identify the facts of why we were attacked, they were forced to ask themselves why "nobody within the government had not already done so".
The Bush adminstration thwarted all efforts, even natural ones, to understand what is needed to enhance our security.
(3) Richard Posner is an appellate judge. NOT A SUICIDE PACT is his review of Constitutional norms and he analyzes the degree to which fears about terrorism should trump civil liberties. Both his historical assessments and his legal theories are provocative, and he does not address the specific threats of "terrorism", speaking broadly of "threats" and "emergencies". He acknowledges not knowing much about the terrorists we face, and has no strategy for defeating them -- an inexcusable gap of information by an author on this subject. He has an academic grasp of the Bill of Rights, but seems to believe that torture may occasionally be useful, and he favors restrictions on individual rights during emergencies without grasping the fact that ultimately this leads to abuses of power which is what our Founders, facing terrorism and instabilities more serious than ours, seemed more anxious to restrain.
Rosa Brooks' review of these three books written by mainstream authorities with legacy research was printed 9/10/2006, LA Times Book Review, R5. I wept. We are facing the loss of all we hold dear, and people of understanding seem to know why: our government has been taken over by a cabal interested in restricting our civil rights, expanding their powers, and in the name of a "war" against impoverished people and the minions of oil billionaires abroad, our own leaders are plundering our treasury.
Is it just the money? I weep for the failure to understand our enemies, foreign and domestic. Our foreign enemies are billionaires -- their soldiers are simply desparate minions. Our domestic enemies are billionaires -- their soldiers are...well, us. Our billionaires seem to be rushing to their own aid.