three on a match   Leave a comment

I respect and admire the professed goals of Conservative or Libertarian leaning sites.  Certainly this is the case with NewsReal, at least as reflected in their mission statement, as it shows a respect for ideas and an understanding of their importance. I only wish that that much understanding and respect was reflected in the actual analysis and reporting. We are all engaged in the battle for man’s mind, and we all are fighting for the recognition of man’s right and his need to use it. When political writers are so concrete bound that they are unable or unwilling to see the implications of evading central points or completely miss the most crucial intellectual issues underneath the material they are looking at, those writers are not helping the cause, they are standing in its way or harming it. One cannot fight a battle if one does not know the stakes, the enemy, or the means to fight it.

It has become a near cultural myth that in the battle trenches of WW1, soldiers found that if three of them took turns lighting a cigarette on the same match (commodities such as matches were conserved due to short supply) , that there was enough time and light for the enemy to hone in on their target. Hence the superstition regarding using the same match for more than two smokers at once. In much the same way, when one reads three articles out of three from the same source, and those articles provide little analysis that is appropriate to the subject matter, yet much in the way of hyperbole and standard talking points, it is a sure bet that it would not be likely that one would derive much benefit by sticking around while the enemy, who ought to be easy to disarm, takes easy shots at the straw men those writers created in attempts at avoiding making philosophical arguments.

In How to Make Sure the Flight of the Intellectuals does not Become the Flight of the Conservatives, Obama Health Care Czar’s Motto? Rationing for Thee, but not for Me. And Has Obama (of all Presidents) Finally Silenced the Rap Industry?,, the writers took such a superficial approach that it allows a less than fully engaged reader to miss or to ignore the fundamental issues each article ought to address.

As an illustration of my point, in Ron Radosh’s five paragraph letter of July 17, 2010, ostensibly written to discuss the threat of Islamafascism, he spends four of them worrying about a concrete; the wishiwashiness of other Conservatives when it comes to prosecuting the war and the threat such fence sitting creates for Republicans in future elections. Seriously? Where is the discussion of the nature of religious thinking, and the mystic and statist view of reality and man, which by definition must be held by those who approach to politics via religious fundamentalism? What about the refusal of our government to assert its right to self defense? Why not face head on the specific views within Islam that lead to direct attacks on freedom and, ultimately, enslavement? Electoral concerns are treated as the most crucial thing in a letter that begins by showing sincere concern about “the very real threat posed by radical Islam” as well as worries about conservatives who “either ignore or deny that such a threat exists, or believe that it is not a dire one, and that we can pursue a modern policy that comes close to appeasement”.

If Conservatives continue in this vein and evade the crucial issues, not only are we guilty of appeasement, but we will be surrendering any claim we would have as defenders of Americanism and America. All this in a piece which announces that it will offer a way to avoid “the flight of the Conservatives” following the flight of the intellectuals. If this be the nature of today’s Conservatives, it is appropriate that intellectuals fled already.

Greg Victor’s post on July 17, 2010 ought to have charged headlong into the most pertinent criticisms possible about the nature of rap and it’s effect on those who are it’s intended targets. It could have looked at the nature of the artists who create such trash; how they show disdain for the interests of their minotity fans by presenting such horrendous attitudes in regards to women, education, responsibility, and family and the role these things play in black success. It could have decried the de-volution of the music; an art which once celebrated black individualism and creativity and placed upon an alter the notion of success in the face of adversity. Instead of focusing directly on the major complaints which black men and women themselves have about rap; that it is the modern equivalent of a minstrel show and that it reinforces the worst racial assumptions of its target and largest audience – 15-25 year old suburban white males, Victor assumes it will be far more effective in the quest to promote conservative values to take pot shots at the intellectual vigor (or lack of it)of two bit artists and their non-abandonment of a black president.

If this is the state of cultural analysis in America, it is no surprise that our culture has gotten to such a state.

Finally, in David Catron’s work on the appointment of President Obama’s “health care” czar, who is an advocate for rationing, there is no mention of the rights of the doctor to practice medicine with his mind free from coercion, no mention of the danger presented to patients by doctors willing to work under such a system, and not a hint of criticism of the prior crown jewels of socialized medicine, Medicare and Medicaid, which most Republicans and Democrats support. Despite their failure to perform, their outrageous costs, and the implied premise smuggled into the programs – that we as individuals owe another human being health care simply because they don’t have any, Conservatives remain fans of Johnson and Roosevelt’s little children. Medicare and Medicaid (as well as Social Security) are still that pesky third rail, even for the alleged defenders of Capitalism and individualism. In a third showing in three articles, the ability or willingness of the writers to “say something original that isn’t just conservative boilerplate”; consists of avoiding the mere mention of the methods by which Conservatives could fight socialized medicine, if they genuinely desired to, and the writer focuses instead on a range of the moment weak jab against rationing and a backhanded slap at Barack Obama. If we Libertarians and Conservatives fight against Obamapelosi care in this manner, we deserve to have our healthcare rationed.

That would be three on that one match of fellow conservatives and libertarians. As an atheist, I hold no superstitions, but as committed to reason as I am, I understand that this will most likely earn the ire of potential allies, but with friends of liberty such as these, or at least with the non-message message these friends bring to the table, who needs liberals?

As a closing point, in emphasis of the three articles above, I offer three quotes by America’s philosopher.

Reason is not automatic. Those who deny it cannot be conquered by it. Do not count on them. Leave them alone.

The hardest thing to explain is the glaringly evident which everybody had decided not to see.

Throughout the centuries there were men who took first steps, down new roads, armed with nothing but their own vision.

© 2010 by carl cervini

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Posted July 19, 2010 by cchashadenough in Uncategorized

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