Thursday, March 31, 2005


Some Links And Thoughts

Courtesy of Eric S. Raymond of Armed and Dangerous, a fascinating article that somehow escaped my attention before now:

And so I have become disillusioned, at least with the Leftists I met in Iraq. So noble in their rhetoric, they looked to the stars, yet ignored what was happening around them, caring only about what was inside their minds. So glorious in their ideals, their thoughts were inflexible and their deeds unnecessary, even harmful. In the end, they proved to me how dogma and fanaticism had transform peace activists into—lifeless peace “statues.”
Read the rest of "How The Left Betrayed My Country" here.

Another intriguing post has to do with attempts by America's Left to understand America's Right. It's a long read, and very much a worthwhile one. For example, he doesn't simply say "you're so full of beans that you don't even know you're full of beans"; he lists topics, explicitly, that many thinkers on the Left don't understand but think they do. And he claims that such misunderstandings are getting in the way of constructive dialogue, with which I sadly agree.

Finally, ESR quotes an intriguing question: What do you believe that you cannot prove?

I believe that ethical behavior is a survival characteristic among human beings. I believe that deeds count more than words, and character counts more than deeds. I believe in the nearly infinite adaptability of my fellow human beings... which, unfortunately, includes the ability to adapt to depths of ethical depravity as well. (The Nazis were not lacking in sympathetic poets and philosophers; nor were the Stalinists.)

I believe in a Power greater than myself, the nature of Whom I do not know, and which I may not be capable of understanding. I also believe in the importance of believing in such a Higher Power, as a means of making us better people. (The vast majority of us can be decent followers but terrible leaders; we do better when we follow an example we cannot reach.) If you're familiar with the Niels Bohr anecdote about the horseshoe, just think of me as believing in it both ways.

I believe in trusting my fellow man, as the saying used to say... and also in keeping my powder dry.

Have a good day!
Daniel in Brookline


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