Sunny Days in Heaven
Spiritual/Political/Philosophical Blog on the Nature of Truth and Falsehood and Heaven

Saturday, October 09, 2004  

Scoundrel Time

The aftermath of the Afghan election does not bode well for the future. Before the votes have been counted, the 15 candidates opposing the current preseident, Karzai, have declared the election a fraud.

No doubt there were irregularities, snafus, and what have you in a country as backward, disorganized, and tribally divided, but in this first attempt at democracy we might have hoped that its participants might have the magnanimity to accept the process, despite some flaws, for the sake of their country.

Are we to believe
that every opponent of Karzai has proof that he got jobbed and is individually infuriated with his tiny percentage of the national vote?

If all the would-be leaders of that nation are going to protest the results of every election to come, democracy can never take root. When the participants undermine the process, the situation must become hopeless.

It can happen not only in places like Afghanistan, but also in the U.S.A.. Unless our own voting process frees itself from incompetence and fraud, becoming impervious to challenges such as Al Gore launched in 2000, we, too, will lose confidence in our government and leaders in time.

What these 15 men in Afghnistan don't seem to realize is that by working with the system or process, they will all have another chance to be elected and lead. Will that poor, pathetic land ever have enough people who can act with grace and put the interests of a nation above their own for just one brief moment in time? It seems doubtful, doesn't it? Are there any or enough patriots in Afghanistan?

Iraq may not look
any more hopeful in January.

If we cannot transform something of these cultures toward a more positive social behavior and cohesion, what is there to do? Basically, we must simply allow them to degenerate into chaos, and go in and stomp them from time to time as new Talibans and Saddams arise here and there.

If Bush is re-elected,
we will have a pretty good idea after those four years exactly what is possible in the Islamic world regarding reform and polity. We hope for the best, but must also prepare for the worst.

Some say these cultures need more time. That we should install and support more benevolent dictators and encourage modernization and human rights. Yet, we know that the Shah of Iran was far from the monster he was complained of in Iran, and his liberalization programs and social reforms incited more antipathy; not less. The people traded a relatively benign autocrat for a much worse and more merciless theocrat.

Heck, we have had Haiti in our own backyard, and never been able to establish any kind of order and hope in that small, half, island state. Granted, we have not put that much effort into it, but it is not likely that even a great effort would transform that nation and people into something good.


Has there been any century
of civilizations which has not been filled with upheavals, disorders, slaughter and mayhem? Of course not. We are fools if we expect the 21st to be any different. And one has to wonder if the micro doesn't apply to the macro.

The old wisdom that no one can change unless they want to, and can only be helped when they want to be helped -- do we apply that to cultures and peoples as we do to individuals?

It would seem so. And the fact that most people live and die with having changed little in their life or accepted beneficial aid and wisdom is a truism. Then we should not wonder that most peoples have also perished through their own truculnce, obstinacy, and folly.

Does the Islamic world
and nations seek aid, wisdom, and positive change? I would argue that it does not, and times are not static enough to permit long, slow development. A people either adapts to rapidly changing orders (creates reasonable coping mechanisms in the form of flexible, but rational institutions) or it does not and suffers as a result.

The barbarism emanating from the Islamic world is clearly a projection of the madness within those cultures, an externalization of its own psychosexual diseases.

What this means is that there are dysfunctions so deeply embedded in the culture that they may be beyond amelioration. The demonic qualities of Mohammedism which are foundational from the start are unamenable to reform.

The situation of the West
and America is not entirely dissimilar in that we have a spirit of hedonism which is becoming increasingly foundational in this country, and which has undermined the nations of Europe much more so.

Whether it is easier for the hedonist to rouse himself to acts of altruism or the Muslim to reject his death wish remains to be seen, also.

I fear that the neo-cons in Washington who believe in the transforming power of freedom shall not have their hopes fulfilled, for the historical and psychological record does not favor their project. The Islamicist is not merely drunk on the idea and hope for power as so many hedonists are, he is entirely maddened with desire for power. He is Legion.

posted by Mark Butterworth | 1:20 PM |