The ends justify the means?
I’ve been very overwhelmed and I’m still learning how to balance life with my attempt at citizen journalism (mostly crowdsourcing on Twitter). The gap in blogging was characterized by a major identity crisis – I had been trying to convince myself that I was a socialist of any sort, when I knew in my heart that communalism is completely incompatible with who I am. I’m an individualist, a libertarian bordering on anarcho-capitalist. I believe in everyone’s inalienable rights, unless they’ve attempted to take the rights of another person. Rights are ideas, possibilities, opportunity. Rights aren’t a guaranteed outcome, that your life will be regulated until it’s the same quality as your neighbor’s. I have no problem with communalist ideas. I just can’t advocate them.
That perennial question, “Does the end justify the means?” is meaningless as it stands; the real and only question regarding the ethics of means and ends is, and always has been, “Does this particular end justify this particular means?” -Saul Alinsky, Rules For Radicals
Our year began with a brilliant uprising and overthrow of a powerful regime. Tunisia’s revolution inspired multiple other uprisings, the most successful and influential being Egypt. Two months, two dictators. Since the fall of Ben Ali and Mubarak, a majority of countries in the Arab world have been met with some form of mass protest, the most significant occurring in Libya, Yemen, Syria, Bahrain, and Iran.
The UN responded to Gaddafi’s attempted genocide, sending NATO to interfere. The US seems to have taken it a step further – the only measure of success being the dictator’s head. While this illegal war is waged (Obama insists the War Powers Act doesn’t apply, and Congress’ approval isn’t necessary), a separate covert military operation is being conducted in Yemen. There are reports that the US intervention is intensifying sectarian conflicts and pushing the country closer to civil war.
I will never suggest that intervention wasn’t necessary in Libya – it was; there is no reasoning with a man as crazy as Gaddafi, who is completely comfortable with ruling a dead, but compliant country. But wars are sold on humanitarian grounds, and fought for much less appealing reasons. The usual suspect – oil – has been suggested. But I believe it may go further than that.
There are people in this world who are radicals; then there are people who take radicalism seriously. Risking the loss of half my audience, I will suggest that the community of people around President Obama are among the latter. One of these people is Regulatory Czar Cass Sunstein’s wife, Samantha Power. Those who have heard of her likely know her “Responsibility to Protect” doctrine, which gained UN fame. Most, however, are either unaware or disregard her globalist ideology.
The ends justify the means, according to radical legend Saul Alinsky. What if war is the means? An article by The Nation regarding Power’s influence on Obama’s decision to involve the US in Libya suggests just that:
[Power] began to see war as an instrument to achieving her liberal, even radical, values.
Many will disregard this idea. It’s disturbing and unthinkable to most people.
But to radicals or liberals who disregard: why? It means that your side has the upper hand. It means that your side fighting much harder and much more cleverly than your opposition is even bothering to look. These people have served your cause very well, if you share their same idea (globalism, for the most part). If you don’t, you may want to reconsider your alliances, because most lead back to the same few, very powerful people. Progressives and the far left have been waiting for this period of time for nearly a century, and people like Samantha Power are keeping the opportunity alive.
But to what end? And why?
For any radically different system of government to be introduced as a legitimate alternative, the current system must be proven an utter failure, collapse, and the people demand a new one. Riots may be thrown in for good measure. Indirect or direct attempts to initiate the fall of the current governments, immediately or over a period of time, is just a series of means to a general end. If that end is a powerful enough idea, most anything is acceptable.
Like most ideas, there are people will kill and die for the cause.
We’re fed these empty fairy tales. Will you believe them?