The problem is NOT Islam but more broadly speaking culture and a lack of disciplining and socialization (nothing to do with socialism but more with adopting certain roles in society) What do i mean with that?
In Europe in the middle ages people were eating almost everything with maybe the exception of soup with their bare Hands. A princess of the east-roman empire was shocked to see this in Germany. She herself has learned to eat with spoon, fork and knife.
In the 17 and 18. Century it was common in middle Europe that people wiped their mouths after eating with their sleeves. Now nobody does it anymore.
A while ago the death penalty was widespread in Europe. Now in many European countries and particularly in western and central Europe there is NO death penalty for absolutely no crime whatsoever.
My thesis: Societies evolve through a series of disciplinary and socialization processes that do NOT come from leaders but more from society itself...these are inner mechanisms that may have complex reasons. For example: Peter the Great once forced the Bojars to cut off their beards. But they refused. Peter wanted to enforce it but it didn´t work. You cannot order directly these disciplinary processes. They are more the consequence of indirect actions and processes.
It is for instance VERY FUNNY that 66 years after World War II there is NO death penalty in Germany and Austria but in The Soviet Union and the U.S.A there is. Even funnier is that there is still 50% of people demanding the death penalty for gruesome crimes but the politicians are saying no in parliament. The same is true for France or other EU countries.
The true problem is not a Religion but more how we deal with each other. Are we saying yes to barbarism or not?
Im not sure I agree. There are numerous examples of individuals that changed the course of a nation. George Bush, for example. If Al Gore were elected (some say he was), would we have had the Bush tax cuts, two wars at once, economic collapse, etc.? Maybe not. Would we have ever had Reaganomics, NAFTA, etc. if the Kennedy brothers weren't assassinated? Maybe not. Einstein. Darwin. FDR. Hitler. Also, religion plays a major role in culture: it can enlighten or stunt growth. I agree with your tolerant sentiment but I feel like religion should bear its share of the blame -- as should George Bush. ;)
Posted 10/24/2011 9:18 pm
"But I had been taught, even in my College days, that there is nothing imaginable so strange or so little credible that it has not been maintained by one philosopher or other, and I further recognized in the course of my travels that all those whose sentiments are very contrary to ours are yet not necessarily barbarians or savages, but may be possessed of Reason in as great or even a greater degree than ourselves. I also considered how very different the self-same man, identical in mind and spirit, may become, according as he is brought up from childhood amongst the French or Germans, or has passed his whole life amongst Chinese or cannibals. I likewise noticed how even in the fashions of one's clothing the same thing that pleased us ten years ago, and that will perhaps please us once again before ten years are passed, seems at the present time extravagant and ridiculous. I thus concluded that it is much more custom and example that persuade us than any certain knowledge, and yet in spite of this the voice of the majority is valueless as a proof of any truths that are a little difficult to discover, because such truths are more likely to have been discovered by one man than by a nation. I could not, however, put my finger on a single person whose opinions seemed preferable to those of others, and I found that I was, so to speak, constrained myself to undertake the direction of my procedure.
...Not that indeed I imitated the skeptics, who only doubt for the sake of doubting, and pretend to be always uncertain; for, on the contrary, my design was only to provide myself with good ground for assurance, and to reject the quicksand and mud in order to find the rock or clay."
~ From: Discourse on Method by Rene Descartes (1637)
No you misunderstood the depth of my thrust. What i was talking about were long term very deep disciplinary processes that shape people over the course of a few hundred years. No individual can exert that much influence beyond the grave. What i am talking about is the REAL problem that vexes us: The arabs have smart people too. They had great leaders too. They had inventions too or at least contact to inventions. Still...they are different that us. And not different in a good way but in a negative way. I am not saying that ALL is negative in the near east but much is. Too much is.
There have been deeper processes that seemed to "just happen" and shaped the importance of the west. When you got the middle ages it was very different. Some of the anger the arabs and others point at the west is a basic frustration over how these stinking un-educated savages of the middle ages could suddenly become the innovators of iphone facebook and Co. I mean in the 12. Century arab doctors JOKED about their christian counterparts. One arab doctor even chronicled: And then a man was there with a gaping wound in his leg. And the christian doctor just wanted to cut off the leg! How can you believe the stupidity of this barbarians?
I read the example in school. It was true. Christian doctors were stupid in comparison to their arab counterparts. 1000 years ago.
Posted 10/25/2011 4:42 am
Sure, it takes generations (and a village) to enact change in a society but you've got to start somewhere. Establishing a secular rule of law in a few of these countries could go a long way. A lot of people seem to think the democracy activists are wasting their time, that these countries will slip back into theocracy or be ruled by the military or some new dictator in just another a month or two... that Egypt will fail. Maybe they're right. Who knows. If so, it was worth a try. The people who protested in the streets deserved our sincere support. Then again, if they win, if some progress comes out of this (even a little), it's a giant leap forward for democracy and toward a more peaceful world. It was worth risking the shaky alliances we had in the region. What had Gaddafi done for us lately? Mubarak? Not a lot, really. Stability in the region? We sort of did that ourselves. We're the ones fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan, not Gaddafi. Even if an Islamic party comes to power, who is to say they won't be more progressive than Mubarak? When revolution comes, you can always end up with something worse (Sting, right) but... maybe something better. We didn't lose productive allies... just a couple of dudes promising not to attack us if we gave them money. We were paying protection money for ourselves and for Israel. That's not an ally. It's a thug. It wasn't helping us all that much to walk on egg shells around these guys. Am I wrong?
No you are not. I grow weary of the Realpolitik dealing with these Pseudo-Hitlers. I never understood why the U.S. paid any money to the Egyptian military. To forestall an attack on Israel? Please. To protect yourselves? Riiiight. To hold back the hordes of poor Africans swimming for Europe? That didn´t even went well with Gadaffi.
Israel will never be wiped out in a "normal" War EVER. The real problems lurk elsewhere. So protection money is for nothing - besides paying for the thugs that attacked Lara Logan i mean. No i am not saying they were military. They were fellachs working in the nile delta. I grow tired of all the shitty politics in the U.S. and in the EU Zone where you can already see the seams giving way. It is clear that we are in a huge crisis ourselves. Our politicans are corrupt or meddle with bloodyhanded mass-killer-rapists-torturers and we are accepting it. We do not have a crisis of democracy though. The people are as sharp as ever. But our parties fail us.
I am sick and tired of the whole political elite in the west. We need more direct basis democracy. I trust the basis will not deal as easily with "Schweinehunde"-Dictators.
It´s not about muslim countries it´s more about THIRD WORLD countries. There rape seems to be viral. But even in Russia (Second World Country) i heard ghastly accounts concerning rapes (even rapes of conscripts in the army!)
What seperates a First World country from a Third World Country? Rape is a major crime for us because a human life matters. That is not the case in Third World Countries. There a human life is often not worth more than that of a bug. Because Poverty and Illiteracy and Violence rules the disease and hunger stricken people. What chance then has the sexual integrity of a woman? No chance.
The EU supported Quaddafi. We were even blackmailed by him. Other European countries suffered likewise: There was an incident with his son in switzerland and Quaddafi punished the swiss with withdrawing billions of dollars from swiss accounts. It was a humiliation. And then he even threatened to make the EU BLACK by hurling millions of people from Inner Africa to Lampedusa and beyond. France and everyone just knelt to him at the end. It was a disgrace.
The problem is that these countries are all vastly underdeveloped. No infrastructure no economies but here and there much oil but no civil society and an over-exaggeration of the military make up the mess of this region. Now they are talking about implementing sharia law in Libya. For civil law this is not problematic but with criminal law it has catastrophic consequences: Hacking off members when you steal something and all the shenanigans you can muster
thats because europe uses soft power which has no teeth, the US uses hard power, violence is the only language the third world understands, and America is quite fluent in that language. millions of blacks? don't you people have border patrol and an immigration system. Here in the US we have a target, 400,000 deportations a year. we fund our immigration agency ICE with billions a year to reach that target.